Stranger than Fiction written by Zach Helm is one of my most favourite movies of all time, as I write this blog I am watching it as well. I have seen it at least fifteen times, and every time it inspires me to write and create.
A little bit about the movie, it is about a man Harold Crick (Will Ferrell) who is a tax auditor who wakes up hearing a voice narrating his life. And in this movie, again not wanting to spoil it, he finds outs something, and this drives the plot along. To understand what is happening he goes to a Literature Professor (Dustin Hoffman) who helps him figure out what is going on. Unless you have seen this movie, I don’t want to go into the whole thing, but it is fantastic.
Why I think this is a must watch, is the blurring of the illusion between the author and your character. We talk about as writers that our characters can surprise us and cause us, the author, to go down a path that we did not plan for. Being a freeform writer over a planner, this is more natural to run on the whims of your characters.
This movie makes me think if my character was real; one he would hate me because I am a massive dick to what is continually happening to him. But this allows my imagination to go on a tangent as if one of my characters changes their mind and change the direction of the story. Like when he is talking to the unconscious Stinky Pete in the first chapter to him just standing in line thinking of drinking a few ales. It always felt that he did this; I just merely tapped into this reality and words flow.
So Stranger than Fiction shows the complex relationships between the writer and their creations, and at that moment you realise you do not have full control over said characters. All you can do is enjoy the journey.