Sunday, April 29, 2007

1,000 Words

This is another idea I had for a story, although I'd prefer this one be done as a movie. I guess you could call it historical fiction, but it takes place during the current Iraq war so it's not all that historical.

The opening of the movie introduces the first protagonist. It's fairly standard, the only key events are him getting a camera from a friend/relative before he leaves, and him setting up his photo blog. Quick progression to him with his squad on the ground in Iraq, he explains to a friend of his that if anything happens he has to post any pictures he has left to his website. Once that plot device is in place the film begins in proper. It's a series of short stories told in a fairly formulaic way. The initial frame is just a splash screen of the photo that is the basis of the story, and a voice over leads in to the story itself. After a number of stories the picture shown is a coffin with an American flag draped over it, a narrator with a noticeably different voice comments that he's not supposed to show those photos. A few more by this new protagonist, and we come to one which is opened not with a photo but with the grainy low quality video you can get on digital cameras. It's a POV shot from a transport rolling through an Iraqi city. You can hear dialogue in the background.
"What are doing man?"
"I'm recording the city. This is what we're fighting for, we're going to make this place free."
"Psh, All you're going to do is waste film."
"It's digital bro"
"Waste batteries then, you know what I mean"
There's a cataclysmic shift at black clad insurgents materialize out of the back alleys, light conversation turns to shouted commands, and a stream of machine gun fire hurtles almost directly at the camera. You can hear the person who was filming get hit, and the camera rolls into the street. From this point on the film is in Arabic with English subtitles. The next picture is of some Iraqi market worker yelling, it tells the story of two kids who found the camera in the street selling to to him. The camera changes hands a few times, until it ends up in the possession of a young adult Iraqi man. Further stories tell of members of his family being killed in an accidental bombing, it tracks his progression from an innocent bystander, to an embittered native, to a full blown insurgent. The last story told in Arabic tells of him arranging to become a suicide bomber. As he rounds the corner into the market for what would feel like the climactic end of the movie he's unceremoniously gunned down by coalition forces. The camera holds still on his body laying slain on the street, then pulls out and uses that same image as the photo that opens the final story. U.S. soldiers discussing his attempted attack, and one telling the other how he found this camera, and he's going to keep a photo blog, and if anything happens to him that he should take the camera and keep it going. Having returned to where we started from the screen fades out.

I think it'd make a great, if highly controvertial, film if you got a good cast and a good writer to turn it from blog post into actual screenplay.


Blogger Stephen said...

I like the idea. Would you be willing to do a draft of the script?

12:50 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home