Once Upon A Time…
How is time being considered in your film?
Time is indeed a fascinating element to factor into your script. How each archetype uses their time allotment clues your audience in to how they operate, it provides a solid foundation. It speaks volumes in fact, and if done right it can quickly welcome your audience into the world of your entire story. For example… How much time your villain has been plotting their deceptive evil plan will provide a logical context to your audience, they can simply relate to time because we all experience it. How much time your hero has been experiencing their set of circumstances provides a kind of story depth for your audience. Because we can all relate to time it is a common denominator between us. While we all experience time, each if us chooses how to it. We are only given so much time before its time to go. This depth of time or use of time can dramatically equip your writing, provide a layer of understanding. It can help it’s construction. Or at the very least it can give you something to ponder.
Time slips into the future… so fly like an eagle until you are free!
How much time do we waste here?
I suspect a lot. People tend to waste time. Time they could be using to learn a new craft or improve a skill they decide to focus on what other people are doing.
A wasteland is the effect where time itself seems to become a negative aspect of their story. Wasted time will guide you to this wasteland where nothing happens. It’s dark there. The wheels do spin but it feels they only turn out more nothingness. Hero’s are the spark that must work themselves out of here. The hero must be disciplined.
Let’s churn this concept of time through the lens of the monomyth. How are the archetypes each relating to time? How are the using time?
This process I hope helps your creative process. I hope you can go through your script and ask yourself how each archetype is using time. Perhaps, for the sake of this blog, look at time as currency. We are all given a certain amount of it. How we use it will tell us how rich we can be. What we see as valuable determines this richness and is up to each of us to understand its value. For example I have seen people with a lot of money completely miserable, while I have seen people with very little money but are spending their time with family quite happy.
The hero is stuck in what feels like a time wasteland. The first ten to fifteen minutes of your script the hero is not happy with how time is being used. They seek a better time. A time when their goals are met. A time when their dreams are realized. A time in which it feels like time itself is an ally and as time unfolds it bring a new gift to the hero. Once the hero decides to embark on the adventure they fight for a better time. They conclude the villain is to blame for their time being stolen, and they be right but in the end the villain’s role is to aid the hero to go within, to make the absolute best use of time. It’s the hero’s greatest journey to master their use of time. To not waste another moment on useless topics.
Villains in time films seek to steal time from others. They steal the time it took for others to achieve a success for themselves using a crafty materialistic means. They use time against others by introducing stress. This crafty use of pressure constricts others to met their demands. They terrorize the imagination of others by introducing a future use of time that generates only pain and sorrow for them. This time whip is quite vicious and a powerful tool the villain wields. They will tell their minions if they don’t do this task then their will be a painful time consequence ahead. Villains use their time chasing false, unsustainable realities. This pursuit of power, materialistic possessions, social popularity and all other self indulgence or egotistical ambitious desires rots the villains heart. These dark patterns is finally what the hero sees and in the end of your film the hero chooses to use their time to educate themselves on the proper use of their time.
Mentors have learned how to think, maximising every moment of their day into a life giving pattern. The wheels in the sky keep on turning and this spinning is an immutable law. The mentor has earned the position through their own personal choices. They have indeed come through their own horrific circumstance and now it is their self proclaimed duty to lend a helping hand. They desire more mentors around them and the more they deem others who pursue good intentions they come to their aid. They have to show the hero how they are wasting time. This is quite creative. How the mentor shows this to the hero is a wonderful decision for you. Music is a wonderful device to help the hero understand the lessons of the mentor, allowing them to sink in.
The prince/ princess energy represents the saving of time. If the hero can rescue the princess then a time of love, of security awaits the hero, time after time. It’s the great reward. Love, security here awaits us all. The prince/ princess awards the hero with their love wisdom. The hero’s heart will beat stronger once they save the princess and bloom a time of a golden age. This time spent in love, in coordination with the laws of love will bring forth a new time. This time around the new patterns emerge. These quality times are earned. For the screenwriter you can use this to create pressure for the hero. For example a time limit is such a powerful device to create real tension in your script, go back and watch your movies through this lens. Watch how screenwriters use this concept. A montage of time passing, characters aging, villains limiting time…
in your story minions serve the villains authority. The villain has promised the minions fame and fortune for their loyalty. They use time to construct false realities based on these broken promises twisting the minions belief system. The minions are the cards that build a house of cards which wobble throughout the story. As a whole the house of cards appears complete. But time itself works against the Minion. They will face the lies of the villian. Usually a great scene if you can add it is when the Minion realizes every promise the villain has told them is broken in nature and the Minion confronts the villain.
For a time in your script the shapeshifter takes the form of ally to your hero then shifts to a minion. The hero takes time to confide to the shapeshifter. How the hero uses their time is priceless information for the villian. When the time comes for the hero to discover the truth about the deception it hurts the hero. The hero realizes they wasted time telling the shapeshifter things only to have that conversation used against them. Time wars.
Your allies seek to use time as an adventure. Their enthusiasm for using time to get closer to the fall of the construct of the villain for the hero is contagious. For the Ally the hero’s journey is not laborious as it may feel for the hero. The hero needs this passion, this freedom in order to be reminded of the fun that awaits once the princess is saved and the new world begins to pattern. More allies and the often wonderful adventures they embody awaits the hero. For the ally immense gratitude awaits for they know once the hero finds their new world they will be proud of this success.
It’s TIME to start!
To much precious time has already been wasted. Time is so valuable. The time we have here is so short. Let’s all work to use it to ensure better times ahead. It’s time now to create these new patterns. Your villains are paper dragons designed to piss you off enough until you figure out how to do something about it. Do something about it. Write your script. Take that class. Enroll in that workshop. Venture forth mighty hero.
Take small steps in this.
Perhaps write about it.
For your script… How does the hero in your story see time? How do they experience it? Are they reliving a time in their lives?
How is the villain manipulating time? How are the forecasting dark times ahead for others?
What is the time period in which your story is set? What are the rules of this time frame?