We love a good beat sheet here at No Film School. but movies are more than just that.
Movies are more than just a series of events linearly. A great movie is one that not only hits the key plot points and character arcs but also takes the audience on a journey through the development of its story and characters.
What happens between the beats of a movie is often what separates a great movie from a good one. These are the details and nuances of the story that make it come alive and resonate with the audience.
In this article, we will explore what happens between the beats of a movie and why it is so crucial to the success of the film.
Let's dive in.
'The Rocky Horror Picture Show'Credit: 20th Century Fox
The Secret To A Great Movie Is What Happens Between the Beat Sheet
Yes, what happens between the beat sheet in a movie is often what separates a great movie from a good one. While the beats of a movie provide a solid foundation for the story, it is the details and nuances in between that make the story come alive and resonate with the audience.
A great movie is not just about hitting the key plot points and character arcs, but also about how the story is told. It's the dialogue, the visual storytelling, the pacing, and the emotional beats that make a movie truly memorable. These details are what create a sense of immersion and allow the audience to connect with the characters and their journey.
'Hearts Beat Loud'Credit: Gunpowder & Sky
What Are The Typical Beats Of A Movie?
The beats of a movie can vary depending on the genre, style, and structure of the film, but there are some common beats that many movies follow. Here is a general outline of the typical beats of a movie:
Opening: The opening of the movie establishes the setting and tone while introducing the main characters.
Inciting Incident: This is the event that sets the story in motion and creates conflict.
Rising Action: The protagonist faces obstacles and challenges that increase the tension and move the story forward.
Midpoint: This is a turning point in the story where the protagonist faces a major setback or revelation that changes the course of the plot.
Climax: The climax is the most intense point of the story, where the protagonist faces their biggest challenge and the conflict is resolved.
Falling Action: The falling action follows the climax and shows the aftermath of the conflict.
Resolution: The resolution ties up loose ends and brings the story to a satisfying conclusion.
This is just a general outline, and movies can deviate from this structure in various ways to create a unique and engaging story.
'10 Cloverfield Lane'Credit: Paramount Pictures
What Happens Between the Beats of a Movie?
What happens between the beats of a movie is the development of characters, plot, and themes that move the story forward. The beats of a movie are key moments in the story where there is a change or shift in the direction of the plot or character development.
However, what happens between the beats is just as important, as it sets the stage for the beats and helps to build tension and anticipation.
Between the beats, the movie develops the characters, their relationships, and their motivations. The audience learns more about the protagonist and antagonist, their backgrounds, their personalities, and their desires. The story also establishes the setting and the world in which the characters exist, providing context, and adding depth to the story.
Plot development happens between the beats as well, as the story unfolds and the audience learns more about the conflict and how it is being played out. Themes are also developed between the beats, as the story explores deeper ideas and messages that are conveyed through the events and characters in the film.
Ultimately, what happens between the beats of a movie is the building of tension and anticipation that leads up to the key moments of the story. Without these developments, the beats would lack impact and the story would be less engaging and meaningful.
'20th Century Women'Credit: A24
Summing Up The Secret To A Great Movie
What happens between the beats of a movie is just as important as the beats themselves. It is in these moments that the story is developed, the characters are fleshed out, and the themes are explored.
The details and nuances of the story in these moments are what can take a movie from good to great, and make it a memorable and impactful experience for the audience.
Filmmakers who understand the importance of what happens between the beats can create rich, engaging, and meaningful stories that resonate with their audience long after the credits have rolled. So the next time you watch a movie, pay attention to what happens between the beats and appreciate the care and attention to detail that went into creating a truly great film.
Let me know what you think in the comments.