This week's Answer:
the last page. The last hurrah. The denouement final
moment. The last image or the last dialogue. I've often
spent a disproportionate amount of time on that last
moment. We want our screenplay tied up just right with the
perfect bow. Maybe we're looking for the last satisfying
"ah" or at least "the viewer/reader
thinking, I'm glad I stayed all the way to the end even
though I wasn't always sure that I would"
this moment is a "feel good" beat. The hero has
overcome, won, beaten the odds, risked it all and is
coming up golden (albeit often somewhat tarnished). Many
times he/she's with a love interest that is now more
interested in him/her, or an ally who is more allied with
him/her. It's a "they lived happily ever after if
you're a fool to believe that" point in script time.
Often, in the horror genre, it's a "I know you
thought it was over, but it really isn't because the
screenwriter wants to make another sale so there's going
to be a sequel that most likely won't be as good"
can be a final twist, the last discovery that, even though
we were hoping everything was going to turn out perfectly
fine, something is still rotten in the state of Denmark
(reference: Shakespeare's "Hamlet" or the actual
yearly Denmark report).
usually a time of reward for the hero. He or she has given
his/her all and has been transformed in some way and
deserves at least some ice cream or something sweet after
all that bitter turmoil and gallant confronting self and
sacrificing it all to face his/her greatest enemy, which
is ultimately self.
a time for the viewer/reader to breathe a little more
deeply after going through an emotionally cathartic
passage. We're now in a new place where the horizon looks
different -- and the hero is often heading towards it with
a love interest or ally -- and our systems have been
cleansed and we want to go along for the last ride and
feel the wind in our hair and believe we're in a better,
Jason or Michael Myers is still on the loose.
My Weekly Offer: I'll read and consult on the last
page of your script for a r