Mindhunter: A Game Called Dialogue

Debra Minoff & Susannah McCullough
April 12, 2018
ScreenPrism (YouTube)

David Fincher’s Netflix hit Mindhunter shows the power of dialogue done right.

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In conversation with… Lee Child on David Fincher’s Se7en

A video of Lee Child’s intro to last year’s BFI screening of “SE7EN“. I was there that night for the specially imported, ‘privately owned’ (QT?), original CCE 35mm print. I would have preferred a 4K DCP…

Joe Frady

November 30, 2017
BFI (YouTube)

Thriller author Lee Child talks to the BFI‘s Stuart Brown about David Fincher’s dark crime thriller, which follows a detective duo who find themselves pursuing a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins to theme his murders. With a great ensemble cast and Darius Khondji’s camerawork helping to bring out the bleak, urban landscape, Se7en was a worldwide success.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo — Breaking Convention

Michael Tucker
January 30, 2018
Lessons from the Screenplay (YouTube)

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is an exciting thriller about an unlikely pair of misfits trying to solve a forty-year-old crime, but it’s also interesting from a structural perspective. It uses a non-conventional, five-act structure. This video breaks down the anatomy of an act, to examine how the film breaks the rules while following them at the same time.

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Books in this video
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Into the Woods: A Five-Act Journey Into Story by John Yorke
Screenplay: The Foundations of Screenwriting by Syd Field

Watch the previous video on The Avengers and traditional act structure:

David Fincher quote:
BFI LFF: MINDHUNTER Q&A with David Fincher hosted by Nev Pierce. Audio
Min. 1:05:28

Other Lessons from the Screenplay:
Gone Girl — Don’t Underestimate the Screenwriter
True Detective vs. Se7en — Creating Light Amongst The Dark

How Mindhunter Gets Under Your Skin

 

Overanalyze
Published on 15 Nov 2017
YouTube

A video essay analysing what makes Mindhunter so creepy.

Mindhunter is a Netflix original crime drama series executive produced by David Fincher set in the late 1970s in which two FBI agents expand criminal science by delving into the psychology of murder and getting uneasily close to all-too-real monsters.

Features portrayals of real-life serial killers such as Ed Kemper, Richard Speck, Monte Ralph Rissel and Jerry Brudos.

The Plot Twist Checklist

Ciara Wardlow
August 8, 2017
Film School Rejects

A toolbox for the construction of plot twists, not an instruction manual (nobody reads those anyway).

A great plot twist is the stuff movie legends are made of. It’s what separates the good from the mind-blowingly great; the fertile ground from which many a movie meme and some of the most iconic lines in all of film history have sprouted (“No, I am your father,” “What’s in the box?!”, Bruce Willis is a ghost, etc.). As a good plot twist thrives on innovation and doing the unexpected, it is impossible to put together a genuine “how-to” guide for the crafting of plot twists. Instead, included below is a curated collection of some of the tools most frequently used in the construction of the best cinematic twists and turns. Maybe some of you might want to use these to craft some of your own twisting narratives, but even if not, as with any art, identifying and understanding the tools being used only enables a deeper appreciation of the finished product.

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Cross-Examining David Fincher’s Interrogations

Sheryl Oh
August 8, 2017
Film School Rejects

Allegiances are never simple in a Fincher film.

David Fincher makes some seriously memorable films. That’s like saying water is wet, but his movies are impeccably crafted without seeming ostentatious or painfully clinical. Arguably, the best part about his films is the talking. You won’t find a film of his where character dynamics aren’t laid bare in the form of a lengthy conversation. Literally putting words on screen has been a landmark of his since the beginning of his film career.

Notably, many of Fincher’s movies crescendo to significant arguments and interrogations, and it is never just run-of-the-mill grilling. He has the ability to make talking – for want of a better term – interesting. Part of what makes his interrogations so enveloping and immersive is the insistent, intimate focus on the subjects at hand. Characters are thrust into settings but also command them in cinematically satisfying ways:

Fincher gives us just enough of any given setting, and the details are always overshadowed by the manner in which the characters move and interact within them. (Jones, 44)

Fincher has a new Netflix series coming out in a couple of months; one which will undoubtedly feature some of his signature wordy conversations. While awaiting the release of Mindhunter, we examine what it takes for him to put together the perfect interrogation scene.

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