I have recently identified a genre of films that feels as if it connects with me very deeply. I am not sure how niche this is but am hoping that the examples provided will push others to dip into the comments section and add any that I have not yet included.
This specific genre can best be described as “Films where the protagonist discovers their passion for writing”. At least three of these films have made me cry in recent years and I find myself drawn back to them, watching them over and over in the way I took to The Social Network during the pandemic, watching/listening to it each night as I fell asleep, the pace of Aaron Sorkin’s script lulling me all the while. While the characters there are mostly deplorable, there’s something to be said for someone who takes to their new passion with a newfound honesty and affection. I couldn’t tell you when I first recognised that I wanted to write. It feels like it has always been here. Then again, through therapy I have found out a lot of things about my past that I had suppressed with the urgency of the trash compactor from A New Hope.
This is far from being a complete list. They’re just the films that I have rewatched recently enough and identified that they have that arc in place. They include:
Can You Ever Forgive Me?
Blinded By The Light
Tick, Tick… Boom!
[Spoilers for the above] There is something about the way Lee Israel finds her own voice through copying other writers. I sobbed at the end of Blinded By The Light when Javed recognised that it was his own hometown that gave him the inspiration for his writing. I had no frame of reference for Little Women before Greta Gerwig’s version, and yes, I know, that’s on me.
As I’ve said, there are undoubtedly more. I considered Rebel In The Rye, Tolkien, Ruby Sparks, Coming Through The Rye, Capote, Finding Neverland, Midnight In Paris, Kill Your Darlings and Adaptation as part of this list but the five above hit me the most.
Let me know of any others I may have missed.
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