Hidden Talent: Writers Within Movies


Here is a short list of my favorite movies that feature writers (that are not biographies). If you can think of any more, please be sure to include them in the comments!

Stand  By Me

This movie was based of a Stephen King’s novella, or a portion of one of this other novels, I can’t remember.

The narrator is writing a story that took place when he was 12 years old. He and his childhood buds took it upon themselves to hike off into the wilderness to see a dead body. Even though that is the center of their mission, you get to witness these four boys and their coming-of-age realizations.

The narrator’s name is Gordie. As a little boy, life was rough, but he always had the support of his great friends. He was the black sheep in his family. While his older brother was into sports, Gordie hung back and wrote stories. After his brother died, he became a stranger to his parents, who simply wished he were more like his brother

Gordie’s closest friend was Chris Chambers. He was the town ne’er-do-well, his reputation set up by his asshole siblings before him. He saw Gordie’s talent as a great gift.  There’s an excellent scene were they’re walking down the train tracks while Gordie’s trying to talk himself out of being a writer because it’s so stupid. Chris stayed determined, repeating to him that he had a great gift that needed to be shared.

I think, as writers, we often have to go through struggles in order to get good writing material. It’s sad, but those experiences make up some of the greatest stories of all time (just look at the book of Job in the Bible). When things get tough, it’s hard to see the good, especially in ourselves. As writers, we really do need that outside encouragement every once in a while.  It’s true you should always believe in yourself, but nothing beats the glow that comes from others having faith in your talents.

Riding in Cars with Boys

I can’t remember if this movie was a hit or not. I know when it first came out, I was far too young to really understand it. Today, even though I haven’t experienced half the stuff that occurred in this movie, I understand and embrace it now.

The main character is Beverly. She, like every other young girl, likes boys. They’re fun to kiss, they’re fun to talk about, so on and so on. But, unlike many other girls, she wants to be a writer.

Her writing talents start off a little awkward. She’s got the beautiful words ready to put together, but she struggles with finding an appropriate audience. For example, she feels she will win over a popular jock she has a hard crush on with a poem of her own writing. Sadly, even though she requested he read it later, the jock recites her poetry to his friends and mocks her use of the word ‘loins’.

But she is able to make it through the embarrassment and continues her dream of becoming a writer…. until there was Ray. Ray is a common partier who Bev falls in love with. And, at the age of 15, Bev is impregnated by this man. Therefore, her dreams fall to the wayside. It becomes too much of a struggle to finish high school, so college is clearly out of the question.

I won’t give away any more details with this movie so I insist you check it out. The whole story is sort of written like a narrative. Bev, in the beginning, is all grown up. She wrote this book about her quest to become a writer, and the movie is like the story plot within the pages.

Moulin Rouge

Now from the realistic to the whimsical! If you haven’t seen this film, I strongly urge you too. There is so much I can say about it, but I must contain it to only a few words.

Here are the basics: The whole movie is the narrative from the main character, Christian, and the novel he is working on. Christian is a young English lad who moves to Paris to become a poet to write about truth, beauty, freedom, and love. Especially love. Upon arriving and setting forth to work, he discovers that ‘he’s never been in love!’ Uh oh! One of my writing fears includes lack of experience taking a toll on my writing quality.

Without going into much detail, let’s just say that Christian stumbles into a world of experience and falls in love.  And the best part, the greatest part, is the whole movie is one giant musical! We, as creative writers, often have a whimsical imagination that stays within our minds only becoming a textual vision when printed/typed on paper. I feel this movie brings to life many of those day dreams writers get.

And don’t you sit there and tell me: “Hey, I’m a writer and I don’t daydream.” That is a lie! Even people who don’t write day dream. It’s part of being human.

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Filed under Articles Written by Me, The Tales of a Weary Writer

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