Sunday, April 15, 2012

Creating a Flowchart for "Run Lola Run"

In "Writing for Multimedia and the Web" by Timothy Garrand, chapters 3 and  5 focus  on creating flowcharts and script formatting. Garrand explains that in order to be successful in multimedia, your organization must be simple and easy to understand for anyone who is looking at your site, hypertext, movie, etc.. To make organization simple, it would be best to first create a flowchart that breaks down the main points of your project. After the flowchart is complete, a writer can then write the script for their project much more easily than is the flowchart had not been created. A great example of where a flowchart can be useful can be seen in the film “Run Lola Run”.
“Run Lola Run” is a somewhat experimental German film that was made in 1998. In the film, time is extremely crucial. The main character, Lola, must race against time to obtain $100,000 in 20 minutes or less for her boyfriend, Manni, who needed the money to save his life. The film follows a mainly linear format; however, the entire plot of the film is carried out 3 times from start to end. The first 2 times that it is carried out, the end result was death, but the final time victory was achieved. Each attempt yielded different outcomes based on interactions Lola had with characters throughout the film. The slightest interaction changed the entire course of history for both Lola and the minor characters. This style may seem experimental to many people, but in the end, a beautiful film was the result.
“Run Lola Run” can be very complicated to understand if someone only watches it once. Every little detail is important and effects the entire course of the plot. In order to keep track of the important details, a viewer of the film could take Garrand’s advice and make a flowchart of the plot. By making a flowchart with a few rows and columns, the details can be very easy to keep track of; also, the slight differences between each of Lola’s 3 attempts at saving Manni become clear. For example, in the first run through, Lola passed a boy and a dog in the stairwell of her apartment. In the second run through, she passed the same boy and dog, but the boy tripped her, causing her to lose time. By creating a simple flowchart, these slight differences become much more apparent and easier to understand. The same flowchart concept can be applied to creating multimedia for the web.

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