If you have tried financing a genre film or get development funding for your script in Australia over the past ten years, chances are at some point you were rejected by the gatekeepers on the basis of plausibility. Some people simply don’t understand how film works.
If anyone did understand how film works, it was Alfred Hitchcock.
I keep rewatching Alfred Hitchcock’s movies and to my taste, they never date. He was known to be irritated by people questioning plot twists based on plausibility and he used to call that breed of people ‘the Plausibles’.
Today my 7-year old son reminded me how much he loved The Adventures of Tintin, which we watched together last week. Yet, the day after our viewing, he asked me “Papa, who stole Tintin’s ship?”. I believe he detected a plot hole in the film… Still he loved the movie.
This is exactly what Hitchcock meant: a well-written script in terms of anticipation and suspense may well succeed despite issues of plausibility.
Do you have any examples of movies you loved, despite any plot holes you found?
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Karel Segers wrote his first produced screenplay at age 17. Today he is a story analyst with experience in acquisition, development and production. He has trained students worldwide, and worked with half a dozen Academy Award nominees. Karel speaks more European languages than you have fingers on your left hand, which he is still trying to find a use for in his hometown of Sydney, Australia. The languages, not the fingers.