Saturday, February 20, 2010

Rhyme or reason?

Did you know that scenes in screenplays can rhyme?

I'll give you an example.

"Master and Commander" tells the story of two friends, Captain Jack Aubrey and Doctor Stephen Maturin, who enjoy playing music together (violin and cello) when they're not busy leading and healing the ship's crew. Aubrey is a wonderful leader, sailor and fighter, a man who thrives on danger and action. Maturin is a wonderful healer, botanist and poet, a man who thrives on peaceful musings and quiet learning.

Towards the end of the story Captain Aubrey finds himself standing in the Captain's quarters of the enemy ship he has successfully won in battle, and he notices a sheet of music on the floor. As he stands and stares at the sheet of music, he is suddenly attacked by a French sailor who had been lying in wait for him. After a struggle, Aubrey succeeds in fighting the sailor off and forcing him to tell him where the French Captain is hiding - in the infirmary. Upon arriving in the infirmary, Aubrey sees two men, one lying dead on a cot and the other a doctor who explains that the French Captain lies before him, having only just died from his battle wounds.

The twist which we discover several scenes later, is that the French Captain had in fact disguised himself as the doctor.

Captain or Doctor? Warrior or healer? Friend or foe? And music too, of course. This is in fact the theme of the film, and the very essence of the quite beautiful and complex friendship between these two men. All of which is portrayed via these rhyming scenes.


Alby Mangroves said...

Dear Eleanor,
I would like to let you know that this scene is my favourite in the whole movie. Even if it does have Russell Crowe wielding a musical instrument, which clearly, is the insanity here.

Anna of Helylle said...

A male friend told me this was a lousy movie so I never went to see it. Should've known better than to trust a tone-deaf chemist on film issues. It goes straight to my list of "Eleanor recommends..."

herhimnbryn said...

I adore this film, so full of contrasts. The book is better though! I have muso friends that cannot watch the scene here, the fingering is not quite right. Fortunately, I am not a muso!

The Coffee Lady said...

Dear lord, I must get myself a new brain. I watched all of this film and can't remember a minute of it.

Anonymous said...

I loved this movie, too, and you should read City of Thieves -- also the two unlikely friends theme.

Julia said...

That is a fabulous scene, and I read every one of Patrick O'Brian's novels on its recommendation. (Plus, it turns out that all the men in my extended family love those books and have read them at least three times, so tracking them down was quite easy.)

Jeanette said...

Have to confess ( like Anna) that I haven`t seen it either. Is this a swedish thing maybe?? Need to see it now though. Obviously!

Take care