The Blogger’s Tale

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With apologies to Chaucer, dear me! Thanks to fellow IL Computing Educator and twitterist, Beth Pollock-Burke, I was able to attend the Chicago premiere of “Dear Me: A Blogger’s Tale.” Beth went to high school with both of the producers who are married, but oddly enough didn’t meet until they were out in L.A. This is a feature length movie about a nervous girl who can’t help but blurt out the truth. She cares for the plants in office buildings, but dreams of writing copy for an ad agency. No longer able to afford her therapist, she turns to the Diary of the Mouth blog service and starts journaling as Dear Me. So, what can we emulate here for our students’ less than three minute features? Plenty!

Let’s start with the story since there’s nothing worth filming without that. I’m a big fan of books and movies that start at the end and go back to build up to that point. That’s a great device to set the stage and create instant anticipation. Along the way in this story there is a wide range of characters, from the immature and nerdy, to the suave and on to the fatherly owner of the agency. And it’s a love story to boot (that’s how I got my wife to attend with me). Along the way they freeze the frame now and then to let the main character’s voice reflect on what she was thinking (or not thinking) at the time. And that’s kind of ironic/reminiscent since the ad agency’s owner was the father in “The Wonder Years.” Which brings us to the visual part of the storytelling…

This is where I tell you to go check out and take a good look at their very creative, interactive website and especially watch the trailer (keep an eye out for glimpses of the storyboard). Regular readers know I’m a big proponent of students making movie trailers to illustrate pieces of literature and their own creative writing, so you HAVE to watch this one. What’s in it for your students and you? Well…

Door scenes! Revolving and bathroom

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OTS, over the shoulder shots to put you right into the conversations

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Rule of Thirds and ”looking room”

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POV/Anthropomorphization – the computer screen’s point of view

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I hope “Dear Me: A Blogger’s Tale” comes soon to a screen near you.

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