The central idea of this book has been that the director of a film must have a concept, an interpretive idea that I have called the director’s idea, to determine an effective approach to the text, the performances, and the camera. With a clear director’s idea, the film will be deeper, more layered, and more powerful. Without the director’s idea, the film can still be made, but the audience’s experience of the film will be flatter. In this sense, the director’s idea is the path to better directing, possibly even great directing.
I suggested in Part I that directors fall into particular categories: competent, good, or great. Competent directing is the baseline for directing. This category is characterized by a particular view. ...