After the tumultuous months of the 2007-2008 WGA strike, one important message bubbled back to the surface: As much as Hollywood might forget the pens behind the scenes, there would be no business called show without them. (Okay, there would still be reality tv, but let's not go there.)

What, perhaps, didn't come through was why a writer is so important. What it is about a script that makes it something Hollywood masses would strike and picket for? The Washington Post has published an excellent piece on the subject, one that reminds us that scripts are a heck of a lot more than good dialogue and catchy lines. "But to call a movie well written is far more than a question of dialogue -- in fact, most filmmakers agree that dialogue is the least of it. Instead, good movie writing comes down to what defines good writing in general: a command of structure, voice and momentum, all in the service of a story that grabs spectators by their throats, then leads them along a path they simply must follow or they won't be able to eat, sleep or lead a happy life."

We're talking down to the minute details, like ScarJo's pink underwear in Lost in Translation. Sure, the piece takes the easy road when comparing character descriptions from He's Just Not That Into You with Moonstruck, but sometimes extremes make an impression. And this piece might just make you question a lot: Is the director that amazing? Was the actor really that good, or just given good material they couldn't mess up?

With scriptwriting on the mind, which screenplays float your boat?
categories Movies, Cinematical