The Difference Between A & B

Last week, I watched Mega Piranha and it got be wondering about the difference between A & B movies (or perhaps, better stated, the difference between a well-acted versus not-so-well-acted movie, since there are some REALLY stellar B-movies & some horribly stinky A-one).

I know there’s the usual factors in a good versus a bad movie: better costumes, stronger plot, more money on special effects, but as I watched the Mega P., I began to wonder if part of the difference is this: when I watch this particular movie, I was very conscious that the actors were actors.  (Well, save one of the guys who played the scientist & the other who was the lead).

When the cast was in the scene, it felt like, “I’m TIffany, playing the role of the lead heroine.”  Whereas with other movies—say Colin Firth in The King’s Speech—Firth seems to believe he is the king, and so do I…the whole thing had me wondering about the self-consciousness of acting—when the actor isn’t fully committed to the role & so creates a disconnect between the viewer and the story.

And it got me wondering about books and how authors do the same thing: often you read a story and there’s a plot hole or a character inconsistency, and it’s as though the writer is trumpeting, “Don’t worry. It’s just a story. It’s just make-believe.”

Well, yeah, but isn’t the point to make me believe these people & their situation really exist?

It’s stuff to think about as I start my latest WIP…am I fully committed to the story, the characters, and the plot or am I creating a gap between my readers the the novel?

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