S04E04 Script Discussion

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Ah, I just recalled what I think of when I hear 'training montage' - it's actually a movie about a horse from 1983, Phar Lap.

Naturally, he's a racehorse and you have to train him, so there are multiple horse training scenes in that that can be described as training montages.

As an example - this clip from running the horse in steep sand dunes. According to the movie, the horse didn't really want to race/run, so had to be trained - this was his owner/trainer making sure he worked hard. Later, there's a scene where his keeper gets him to race by overtaking other horses, since he won't run all out just on his own.

The dialogue prior to this scene.
Wife: What's wrong?
Henry: He still won't run.
Wife: Give up. Or sell him.
Henry: I'll not give him that satisfaction. He's going to learn to work hard even if it kills me.
 
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Haakon

Administrator
Staff member
Ah, I just recalled what I think of when I hear 'training montage' - it's actually a movie about a horse from 1983, Phar Lap.

Naturally, he's a racehorse and you have to train him, so there are multiple horse training scenes in that that can be described as training montages.

As an example - this clip from running the horse in steep sand dunes. According to the movie, the horse didn't really want to race/run, so had to be trained - this was his owner/trainer making sure he worked hard. Later, there's a scene where his keeper gets him to race by overtaking other horses, since he won't run all out just on his own.

The dialogue prior to this scene.
Wife: What's wrong?
Henry: He still won't run.
Wife: Give up. Or sell him.
Henry: I'll not give him that satisfaction. He's going to learn to work hard even if it kills me.
I don't know if we've said this exactly but the training montage could actually be combined with the montage showing the passing of time. Since Elves live for ages, and become extremely skilled, not only because of great talent but also because of millions of hours of training, we have the opportunity to show this. For example, Glorfindel could train Idril in Gondolin while it is being built and developed.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
@Rhiannon So, I’m finally getting a chance to go through these in detail and here’s a fiddly bit.
Same as ever, same as ever. Had a bit of personal trouble with thieving relatives just when I got back. Then last winter was more harsh than usual, and there were a few wolves about. Nothing major. The 4 Shire’s a fine place to return to after an adventure. But once you’ve seen the wide world and acquired the taste for travel, it’s difficult to stay put.
The term “nothing major” was bothering me, so I did a little digging. According to Google’s Ngram Viewer, the term seems to have originated around the end of the Great Depression. A bit too modern for Bilbo. He might have likely said, “Nothing of great note,” instead. Or if he’s feeling fancy (he is speaking to a king) he might say “import” rather than “note”.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
@Rhiannon So, I’m finally getting a chance to go through these in detail and here’s a fiddly bit.


The term “nothing major” was bothering me, so I did a little digging. According to Google’s Ngram Viewer, the term seems to have originated around the end of the Great Depression. A bit too modern for Bilbo. He might have likely said, “Nothing of great note,” instead. Or if he’s feeling fancy (he is speaking to a king) he might say “import” rather than “note”.
Thanks! I'll change that in the script. Please let me know if you find anything else that seems to modern.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
So, I'm noticing that the scenes with Bilbo are rather short, at least the two I've looked over in the first act. I can certainly understand why it would be difficult to make those have much substance, especially since we just glossed over them in the outlining phase. The first seems to come in around 90-120 seconds (depending on the speed of the dialogue [which, based on the writing, appears fairly spritely] and how long the camera lingers during the setup to the scene), and the second, a minute or less. The issue becomes one of comfort level. Especially when showing Bilbo in the beginning of this episode, we definitely don't want to feel unsettled when we're with him. We want to sit down, relax, and enjoy our time. If things get more tense towards the end of the episode, that's fine, but in the first act, we want to take our time a bit.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
So, I'm noticing that the scenes with Bilbo are rather short, at least the two I've looked over in the first act. I can certainly understand why it would be difficult to make those have much substance, especially since we just glossed over them in the outlining phase. The first seems to come in around 90-120 seconds (depending on the speed of the dialogue [which, based on the writing, appears fairly spritely] and how long the camera lingers during the setup to the scene), and the second, a minute or less. The issue becomes one of comfort level. Especially when showing Bilbo in the beginning of this episode, we definitely don't want to feel unsettled when we're with him. We want to sit down, relax, and enjoy our time. If things get more tense towards the end of the episode, that's fine, but in the first act, we want to take our time a bit.
I see what you mean. Do you think both scenes need more dialogue?
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I see what you mean. Do you think both scenes need more dialogue?
In scenes with little action, that is often the only recourse. Alternatively, placing the scene in a place where something else is happening to which we can cut to between lines might help a little. The final scene of Act III could certainly use some of both. In a 2-4 minute scene, you can usually expect to have between 5-8 exchanges of dialogue, depending on how many people are in the scene and whatnot. Actually, one thing that helped me in envisioning how these things look was to look over some of the scripts from GoT. Here's the pilot in PDF. If you look at the scene after the beheading, where you are meeting the Starks, notice how we kind of linger on them for a while. The show is telling us to get comfortable with these guys. They're important, and we like them (well, maybe not Theon).
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I’m serious. Bard spoke of recovering the past glory of Dale, but Erebor now is every bit as wonderful as the old songs tell. If I didn’t know better, I never would have guessed a Dragon once lived here. There’s not even a whiff of his stench. Everything is so clean and bright.
This is another example of something to watch for. "I'm serious" also seems a little modern for Bilbo. I mean, the term existed as far back as the 18th century as far as I can tell, but wasn't used with any kind of frequency until the mid-twentieth century. Perhaps something like, "I'm in earnest" or just "Truly" might work as well.

https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=I'm+serious&year_start=1750&year_end=2000&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1;,I 'm serious;,c0
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I feel like I'm going to be nagging about issues like this a lot. I'd recommend having a look at the Google Ngram Viewer. It isn't perfect, but it is helpful in determining when a term or word came into popular use. I'd say anything that spikes after 1900 is probably too recent for Bilbo (hobbits in general), and with the Elves of the First Age especially, I'd be careful with anything that didn't rise to prominence prior to 1800.

For example, when Aredhel says "too much fun" to Fingon in Scene 6, it certainly feels to me like a modern term. The likelihood of coming across it in anything written prior to the 1920s is fairly low. I certainly could see a Hobbit saying it, but perhaps not an adult Noldor. You could even have her make a joke about "hordes of angry ants" to get a similar effect.

If anyone thinks I'm way off base on this, do let me know.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
Or a car chase. Those take a long time.
EXT. STREETS OF DALE - EVENING

BARD leads BILBO, GANDALF, and BALIN through the streets of Dale, gesturing with his arms as Turgon was doing in the last scene.

BARD
And the warehouses were largely undamaged because, of course, Dragons have no interest in eating grain, so they only took us a few weeks to rebuild and are almost restocked. The towers we have yet to raise again, but we have begun the work and expect them to be done by next spring.

BILBO
Splendid!

BARD
Not yet, not quite yet. Dale of old was splendid, and our new city is as yet but an echo of its former self. But we will persevere. We are determined not to forget our past glory.

They come to an immense relief carving, which the camera pans over. Dale of old. Dale burning. A line of carven people from moving Dale to Esgaroth. Barrels floating in the lake. Esgaroth aflame. A carving of Bard with his bow drawn and the thrush by his ear. The camera suddenly flicks along the path the arrow would take to a carving of the Dragon in the sky.

BARD
(off screen)
Nor will we forget our past sorrows.

Suddenly, Bilbo, Bard, Gandalf, and Balin hear a screeching sound behind them. RAGNA comes careening around a street corner at the wheel of a sports car. Behind her are nine black SUVs with tinted windows. Ragna screeches to a halt.

RAGNA
Get in!

Bilbo, Bard, Gandalf, and Balin quickly climb into the car. Bard and Balin are in the backseat with Bilbo between them. Gandalf sits in the passenger seat. Ragna takes off again. Bilbo glances back at the SUVs through the rear windshield.

BILBO
Who are they?

RAGNA
I have no idea.

GANDALF
There are nine of them. They were once men; great kings of men. Then Sauron the Deceiver gave to them nine Rings of Power. Blinded by their greed, they took them without question, one by one falling into darkness. Now they are slaves to his will. They are the Nazgûl: Ringwraiths, neither living nor dead. At all times they feel the presence of the Ring, drawn to the power of the One. They will never stop hunting you.

BILBO
What?!

BALIN
Hey Bilbo, do you still have that magic ring?

BILBO
I -

Ragna suddenly makes a sharp turn, throwing everyone in the car to one side.

EVERYONE
AAAAAHHHHHHHH!

Gandalf leans out the window and begins shooting fireballs from his staff. The SUVs have to swerve to avoid them.

A fireball hits one SUV, causing it to explode in a huge ball of flame. A high-pitched screech is heard.

Bard retrieves his bow and quiver from behind a seat. He climbs out the window and perches on the back of the car, shooting arrows at the SUVs.

Bard pops the front tire of the nearest SUV. The SUV flips forward and crashes upside-down beside their car, Ragna has to swerve to avoid it. As they drive away, another SUV crashes into the upside-down one. Both erupt in flames.

They are outside Dale now. and driving through some pine forests towards the Long Lake. As they leave the pine forests, the remaining black SUVs gain on Ragna's car. Gandalf and Bard are still shooting at them, though now with little effect. Bard runs out of arrows.

BARD
Ragna! There is another quiver by your seat. Give it to me!

Ragna reaches down beside her seat and picks up a quiver of arrows.

RAGNA
Balin, take the wheel!

BALIN
I can't drive!

RAGNA
Bilbo, take the wheel!

Before Bilbo can tell her that he cannot drive either, Ragna has climbed out the window and is standing on the running board of the car. She inches along it, holding the quiver out for Bard to take.

Bilbo quickly climbs into the driver's seat. He takes the wheel, but his feet cannot reach the pedals. Balin chucks a piece of stone at the pedals, and it lands on the accelerator. The car begins to move faster. Bilbo does his best to steer.

Ragna has reached Bard and handed him the quiver. She climbs into the backseat.

The car drives over a slanted rock and catches some air. The SUVs behind it do the same. As the last one comes up off the ramp, one of Gandalf's fireballs hits it, causing it to explode. A piece of flaming car hits the side of Ragna's car, setting it on fire. Balin leans out the window and tries to blow the fire out but only succeeds in making it spread.

RAGNA
Head for the lake!

Bilbo sets a course for the lake. Bard, glancing over his shoulder, sees that they are approaching the water and climbs into the backseat. Gandalf continues shooting fireballs.

Their car, the back of which is now significantly burning, reaches a long, rickety wooden pier. It rumbles straight down the pier towards the water.

EVERYONE
AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!

The car drives off the end of the pier and lands in the lake with an enormous sploosh and a huge rush of steam. The remaining black SUVs stop along the lakeshore. A HISSING VOICE comes from one of them.

HISSING VOICE
Give up the Halfling!

Ragna, Bilbo, Bard, Gandalf, and Balin swim to the surface.

RAGNA
If you want him, come and claim him!

The SUVs try to drive into the water. A huge tidal wave in the shape of watery horses suddenly rises up and washes them away.

Ragna, Bilbo, Bard, Gandalf, and Balin climb up onto the pier.

BILBO
Dale is certainly more exciting than I remember it!
 
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