There are at least four elements of whole book and movie. The first is conflict. Conflict is the number one driving source for the plot and it defines the characters. Conflict is everywhere. It’s seen in the relationship between the protagonist including the antagonist. If it’s a love story, the antagonist is anything that keeps the lovers apart. In the movie Seven starring Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, the conflict wasn’t limited to the characters; it was the weather. A damp day is conflicting for many people. Conflict is putting several characters in a room and each number has a different opinion. Conflict is trying to get through the silva to grandmother’s house before it get’s dark. Each scene duty have conflict for your avant-garde or movie to be successful.
Sex and violence is the second. Now this doesn’t necessarily mean a hot three-way with the character Patrick Bateman in American Psycho. Nor does this mean Joseph Gordon-Levitt is going to blast his way through buildings hunting for Bruce Willis counterpart in Choice Rush. Although it could be both of these things, it’s not limited to them. Sex could mean the tension between enchanting characters like in, well, pretty much every movie ever. Sex and charity is part of life and in nearly equally movie, film and novel there is always almost permanent a love interest or love subplot. Everything from action movies like The Expendables has a distaff temperament who has caught the sedulous regarding the leading man. In Romancing the Stone, Kathleen Turner’s lonely character, Joan Wilder is on a mission to rescue her sister and along the way she meets heroic Michael Douglas.
As for the violence, a simple car accident where love-struck Ashton Kutcher is pulling out of the driveway mere watching his beautiful neighbor is, on some level, considered violence. There is also slap-stick violence like in many Adam Sandler movies. Playful pushing moreover shoving to a bully picking on a kid in Diary of a Wimpy Deceive is still a flush about violence, although we don’t always consider it violent when compared to bloody films like Dwindle Hard, Scarface or Biker Chicks in Zombie Town.
The third thing that ever novel either story contains is more about structure. No matter how short, long, romantic, violent, pornographic, hilarious or hairy a movie is, it will invariably gain a beginning, middle and an end. Simple as that. In fact, Earnest Hemmingway was once visiting with colleagues who were debating that Earnest Hemmingway could not have possibly written the world’s shortest story-only six words. He wrote the short story on a napkin and passed among his colleagues who all had agreed he won the bet. The short story was six simple words: For sale. Baby shoes. Never worn.
The final element that every book and movie contains is more tricky for novelists than for filmmakers. It’s audio and picture elements. A flick has moving pictures and there is noise. In a horror film and all the lights go out, audiences may still eavesdrop the heavy breathing of frightened characters.
In books, this is a bit more tricky because novelists create images with words that will stay as words while screenwriters will write words that turn into physical images. Save even as a novelist, it’s important to paint beautiful imagery depending on the kind of your book. The audio doesn’t come from speakers that are connected to our television, but rather comes from our thoughts and how we silently read the character’s dialogue and thoughts.
Together, these elements combined create a successful story. Story functions in a linear motion that may hold many subplots, flashback and even time-travel for science-fiction writers. Cause and effect push and pull the characters into growth so that by the end of the novel or movie, they have emerged from their trials and tribulations and grown into something excel (or worse depending on your ending). Either way, they are different. Story causes the events that follow and drama is the effect. Catharsis and mimesis, imitating life. Plot is most important. A colorful characters regarding characters is great, but if there is no plot then they are just sitting around being boring.