C H A P T E R 1 5

15 SPACE, STYLIZED

ENVIRONMENTS, AND

PERFORMANCES

SPACE

Film abridges space as well as time in the interest of narrative compression. A pro-tagonist suddenly remembering at dinner that he forgot to feed his parking meter might be shown in four brief shots: (a) leaping to his feet, (b) his spoon splashing soup on the tablecloth, (c) his feet running downstairs, and then (d) arguing with a meter maid. Because we can imagine what’s left out, only the key actions in dif-ferent locations are necessary. Likewise, you will need to show only key aspects of a location. You can set three scenes in a baronial hall—one against the fireplace, one by the great stairway, and the last by a doorway flanked with suits of armor— and the audience’s ...

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