Category Archives: Dialog

Dialogue Example #1: Lost in Translation

After viewing the clip above, answer the following questions in complete sentences. Leave a comment to this post. Click on the bubble to make the comment.Compose your answer in Word first, then copy and paste. Remember the rubric for leaving comments on Tutorials.

How do the camera angles in this scene support the dialog? What sort of feeling do you get from the dialog in this scene? What sort of mood is created with the combination of dialog and camera angles? The pace of the scene is quite slow. Why do you think this is? How do the visuals match up with the dialog? Why did the director, Sofia Coppola, make these choices?

Dialogue Example: #3 Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

The above clip occurs towards the end of the movie, and the situation is strange, it’s really the main character (played by Jim Carrey) having a discussion with himself about the breakup of his former girlfriend, Clementine.He’s had her systematically erased from his mind, and this scene represents the last part of her that is left. The house they are in is the house where they met.

The last line ends with a twist, since that is where they met, so they are on a Mobius strip, destined to repeat their lives, forever.

After viewing the above clip answer the following questions?

Why is the house falling all around them as they talk? What sort of tone does the dialog set up? How does the writer let the audience know that Jim Carrey’s character is having a conversation with himself? How do we as an audience know this?

Dramatic Dialogue vs. Melodramatic Speech

Reading: Read the following, then write your own example of Dramatic Dialogue, about as long as the snippet of Dramatic Dialogue.

Dramatic dialogue is where there is lots happening – but it’s realistic, and the characters are reacting passionately but realistically.

An example of this might be:

“I’m afraid,” John said, “that I’ve lost my job”.
“Oh no!” said Mary, raising her hand to her mouth in shock. “That’s awful. What on earth are we going to do?”

An example of melodramatic speech might be something like this:

“Oh Mary,” John said, “I’ve some dreadful, awful news. Sit down dear, it’s all going to come as a dreadful shock.”
“What? What is it?” said Mary tremulously, sinking to the chair, her hand to her mouth.
“It’s terrible. I don’t know what we’ll do. The fact is that I’ve lost my job”.
“Oh no!” said Mary, gasping at the news. “That’s awful. What on earth are we going to do? How will we survive? I don’t believe it. Such a shock I can’t tell you.”

Do you see the difference? The melodramatic version is just overplayed and overblown. Think of it as hammy acting in print.

EXERCISE: Write your own bit of Dramatic Dialogue, and post it to this post as a comment. Think of a tense situation, and provide some dialogue to go along with it. Leave out the pleasantries, the exclamation points, and the all caps please.