Friday, 22 March 2013

Silent Seduction - Sensual Scenes From The Silver Screen

The old saying, 'one picture is worth a thousand words' may be a hackneyed cliche these days, but there is no escaping the impact of some of the classic love scenes from cinema of the silent era.

As a writer, it is my job to convey with words the kind of strong passion and emotion the eye can see and comprehend for itself on screen. It's no easy task, as any author knows, and particularly daunting when you look back at some of the most powerful love scenes ever portrayed - and the actors did it without saying one single word.

Take a look at this scene between Greta Garbo and John Gilbert in the 1926 classic silent, Flesh and the Devil:

Their expressions, movements and those amazing Garbo eyes say it all. You know exactly what's going on and, if anything, the interspersed dialogue boards are something of an intrusion.The screen positively sizzles with the chemistry between these two, doesn't it? 

Now try writing that scene - not as a screenplay but as part of a novel - creating as much sexual tension as Garbo and Gilbert achieved. Quite an exercise!

In complete contrast, here's another scene of a very different, intensely passionate kind. Here the seduction is much more deadly. Louise Brooks stars in the 1929 silent, Pandora's Box:

For me, there is so much going on in this scene. The complex relationship between all three characters, the passion, emotion and tragedy. 

Try and convey that scene through the written word. If you succeed, congratulations. Now write the novel and get it off to a publisher. You could have a bestseller on your hands!