Much of our day to day existence is lived in the gray areas. A world with simply black and white situations would be rather dull don't you think? Wouldn't give us writers much to work with... As my journey into filmmaking continues forward I've come to learn that sometimes it's what is not said that is almost more important then what is said. The audience does not want you to spell everything out for them in minute detail, if that were so; they'd read an instruction manual, not go to the movie theater. Sometimes in my rich fantasy life I wish we all still talked as they did back in Jane Austen's time period. Rarely did one simply blurt out what one was really thinking. It was conveyed with subtle, but very specific words.
An example of the importance of what is not said, rather then what is said would be the recent development of a possible engagement my older brother is preparing for with wonderfully sweet girlfriend. It is a very delicate matter and its rarely spoken of in my household without a thin veil of the mundane interjected... Just this morning, I was sitting on the couch reading a book in our living room and my mother and said brother were standing in the hallway talking not 3 ft away. I was very aware of what was being said (like every good nosy sister would be) and they were very aware of my presence so the conversation went a little like this.
INT. HALLWAY - DAY
So I drove her home last night and of course I was a little distracted.
I can see why.
I glance up from Shot by Shot. They both share a knowing smile.
I kept looking for my keys and finally her dad pointed them out on my belt loop when he got her into the house. What can I say; it took me a little while to calm down.
He grins again, more sheepish this time.
Are we still going out on Tuesday?
Yep, I definitely want you there.
I finally decide to drop in my two cents.
Where you guys going on Tuesday?
Mom and brother exchange glances.
Just out for lunch.
I roll her eyes and go back to my book.
Tuesday hasn't come around yet but when it does you can bet lunch isn't the only thing on the agenda. It's that sort of subtext, the information applied that makes an audience grin, or sigh or even tear up. Get that and you got something going for you. It won't be perfect the first time, but neither is life.