Yeppers, it’s time to examine some bad screenwriting and see how and why it got that way so we – of course – don’t make the same mistakes.
From a cool site that never lets us down…and has a really cool name as well: Shadow and movies.
Are you looking for a way to make sure that the people who read your book or watch your movie leave angry and frustrated? Well, you’re in the right place because I’m about to explain what is a plot convenience and why you should totally use it whenever you have the chance.
What is a Plot Convenience?
Having a great idea for a story is not hard, but sitting down and writing that story actually is.
There are many plot points and characters to keep track of. And, right when you’re about to write that spectacular scene that you had in mind at the beginning, you realize that logic stands between you and your masterpiece.
So what do you do?
A. follow the logic of the story
B. just ignore the logic and hope that your audience will do the same
If your answer is B… you should change it into A.
A plot convenience is an element of the story (an event, a certain behavior, a coincidence etc…) that doesn’t really make sense in the context but is necessary for the writer who wants the plot to take another direction.
Normally, in a screenplay or in a novel, every action is either motivated by the will of a character who wants to reach a certain goal or is the consequence of another character’s action.
But a plot convenience is an action that contradicts the logic of the story without a reason.
An expert sniper is trying to kill your protagonist. You know that he must fail otherwise the story is over but you’ve already established that this sniper has never missed a target in his life.
So what do you do?
If the sniper accidentally missed for no reason at all, this is a plot convenience. On the other hand, if the sniper missed because the protagonist notices him and cleverly manages to hide, the plot is moving on organically.
Here there are a couple of examples of plot convenience using the movie Batman v Superman…: