What is the relationship between the story and the plot in narrative films, explaining the film narrative in terms of range and depth?introduction to screen analysis

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mstultz72 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The dramatic arc in most film plots is geared toward epic (ideal hero) and melodrama, (combination of tragedy and comedy).  In Aristotle's classic tragic plot triangle for drama, the tragic hero suffers through two acts II & III.  In Shakespearean tragedy, the hero dies at the end.

In film, the hero struggles in Acts II and III but rarely suffers an unahppy, irreversible fate or death.  In other words, most film plots and stories are shaped like tragedy but with the happy ending of comedy. 

A good example of this is the film adaptation of The Natural.  Malamud's novel is a kind of tragedy, of an anti-hero who fails on personal, professional, and romantic levels.  He is exposed as a fraud publicly, ruins his chances at marriage and family, and walks away penniless.  Mighty Casey strikes out.  In the film, Roy Hobbs hits a homerun to win the pennant, and it is implied that he will become husband to Iris.  It's the classic Hollywood ending.  The hero gets love and money: a total mismatch of theme and plotting.