How do movie fights make broken arms/legs look so real?

Answer by E. Thompson:

A lot of it is what is called "sound design" in the post production process. The visual part is just a fake arm or leg that they "break" while hiding the real limb out of the shot or in the clothing. What really sells it is the sound design, which is the sound of the breaking and cracking that is added in the post production of the film. If you which a fight scene with the sound off, you will notice it is much less impressive and you may catch some mistakes because your attention is purely visual.

On a side note, there is bit of a flaw at the end of the Ip Man scene from above. You notice that after the fight his first two knuckles are bruised and bleeding. In Wing Chun Gong Fu the last three knuckles are the preferred striking surface to maximize vertical bone alignment and center line theory.

How do movie fights make broken arms/legs look so real?


What’s the best screenplay ever written?

Answer by David Berman:

I know that Birdman would be a great modern contender, since the writing team had to make sure they LOVED every scene in the film, or else it would ruin the effect they were trying to achieve.

Though, I think I'd have to go with Jaws, specifically in reference to the scene where Robert Shaw is talking about his experience on the USS Indianapolis.

What’s the best screenplay ever written?

Chiwetel Ejiofor’s ‘Doctor Strange’ Character Revealed: He’ll Play Baron Mordo


EXCLUSIVE: Deadline has learned definitively what role Chiwetel Ejiofor will play when he suits up for Doctor Strange, the Scott Derrickson-directed Marvel Studios film that will star Benedict Cumberbatch as the title character. Ejiofor, rumored to be joining the film, will play Baron Mordo, an enemy of Doctor Strange who first appeared in the comic Strange Tales in 1963.

Chiwetel EjioforAlthough he’s an enemy in the comics, don’t look for him to be necessarily a completely villainous character. Rather, he’s an amalgamation of characters culled from Doctor Strange‘s mythology. His isn’t the first change-up in the film; Swinton’s The Ancient One character is another, as the movie has gender-swapped the Tibetan male sorcerer from the comics. Both Strange and Mordo were mentored by The Ancient One, but Mordo tried to kill his teacher. Scripted by Jon Spaihts, the film follows the story of the brilliant and arrogant neurosurgeon…

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What’s the best screenplay ever written?

Answer by Ken Miyamoto:

Yikes.  The eternal question that sits just behind "What's the best movie ever made?" 

The problem with these questions (And I get and love that it's more about starting a discussion and not really about finding an answer) is that A) Film is subjective, so one's best screenplay is another's overrated boring tripe, and B)  There are different genres to consider.

You also have to look at the context. 

While Casablanca is highly touted, most people don't know that it actually had upwards of twelve to sixteen writers.  The studio system ruled the day back then and writers came and went, leaving their own contributions.  Four teams of writers were hired to rewrite that film while they were shooting.  So I'd moreso chalk it up to great filmmaking with a lucky collage of writing in the end.

  • You've got different genres.
  • You've got different core audiences.
  • You've got Memento, which had a structure like virtually no other and managed to tell an amazing mystery.
  • You've got Pulp Fiction, unlike anything else at the time, when you consider the new age of dialogue, the unique structure, the excellent character arcs, etc.
  • You've got The Godfather II, which is one of the most flawless screenplays I've ever seen.  But at the same time, it bores the hell out of many people as well.
  • You've got Adaptation, which is a lesson in screenwriting itself and the very neurosis that screenwriters struggle with.  The brilliant third act, in which Kaufman himself goes against all he believes a script should NOT be, and we see that the script, and Kaufman himself, needed those elements that he detested.  Brilliant.
  • You've got Fargo with its tension filled, yet humorist gaze into the lives of both corrupted souls, and pure goodness.
  • You've got Unforgiven, taking the "go to" western formula to literally the next level, as we see a former gunslinger in the twilight of his life, taking on one last crusade against evil… and maybe becoming evil himself once again to do so.
  • You've got Groundhog Day, a hilarious and unique take at comedy.  High concept scenario with near perfect execution.
  • You've got The 40 Year Old Virgin, which changed the way comedies today were made.  Gone were the days of gross out humor.  It paved the way to a new type of comedy that utilized real thoughts, real feelings, and turned them on their head with bromance (and romance) charm.
  • You've got The Shawshank Redemption, perhaps the best novel adaptation ever made.
  • You've got The Graduate, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Annie Hall, Chinatown, It's a Wonderful Life, When Harry Met Sally, The Usual Suspects, and so so so many more…

But in the end, the question should not be about "What is the best screenplay ever written."  Instead, it can only be "What's the best screenplay for the mood I'm in."  Do I need to laugh?  Do I need to cry?  Do I need to cheer?  Do I need to be inspired?  Do I need to see shit blow up?  What's the best screenplay, and eventually the best movie, for any of those? 

Preaching aside, if I had to really pick one… Die Hard.  It'll shock most, but this is a screenplay that served multiple needs.  It had mad skills with action set pieces, it had great comedy to make us laugh, it had drama, it had touching moments, it had romance between John and Holly, it had thrills, it had suspense, it had wonderful characters, and it was even a damn good Christmas movie to boot! 

No other script, in my humble opinion, above or in other answers to come, accomplishes so much within one screenplay.  Lethal Weapon may be a close second in that respect.

The true answer is that there is no answer, but it starts a great discussion for sure!

What’s the best screenplay ever written?

What’s the best screenplay ever written?

Answer by Dan Goodswen:

Most of the greatest screenplays ever written were never produced. Here is a list of some of the best;

1) Napoleon by Stanley Kubrick

This meticulously researched epic (Kubrick hired Oxford University professor and reknowned Napoleon expert Felix Markham to serve as his advisor, and set 20 of Markham's graduate students the task of compiling a complete biography on the 50 principal characters in Napoleon's life) is one of most famous examples of the greatest movie never made.

Kubrick was obsessed with the Frenchman, he read hundreds of books on him, and would borrow his manners and idiosynchracies – the most prominent of which was Napoleon's habit of bombarding every person he met with questions, a habit Kubrick kept for the rest of his life.

Malcolm McDowell tells an anecdote of watching Kubrick eat; At a restaurant he watched as Kubrick took a bite of dinner, a bite of dessert, then a bite of dinner – the director smiled at the bewildered McDowell and explained 'This is how Napoleon ate!'

The film was to be an epic. A bloody, war and sex driven character study encompassing the entire life and times of the French Emperor.

Unfortunately after Waterloo (1970) bombed, funding for Napoleon was cut and the project was never made. The script was lost for years, and eventually turned up, naturally, in a salt mine vault in Hutchinson, Kansas.

Apparently the salt mine had been used as a storage safe for years. The United Artists executive who found the script, Jeff Kleeman, exclaimed in a press interview, "The last scene of Citizen Kane had nothing on this place."

The script itself has been online for a while, surfacing shortly after Kubrick's death. You can read it here;

Note that Kubrick came from the blueprint school of screenwriting. You won't find poetry here, but if you read his other scripts, you'll realise exactly how he turns his vision into reality on screen, and how epic this epic could have been.

2) I Am Legend by Mark Protosevich

Though this film was actually made with Will Smith in the lead role, this script is superior to the produced one in almost every conceivable way. For starters, it sticks closely to Richard Matheson's original story.

Well worth a read for fans of Matheson and sci-fi in general;

3) Watchmen by Sam Hamm

I am a devotee of the graphic novel, and of Alan Moore. I enjoyed Zack Snyder's slick adaptation. I thought he handled the transition to the screen well. I even accepted his re-imagined ending. But something about it didn't work…

Sam Hamm is perhaps most famous for writing Tim Burton's Batman. In 1989 Joel Silver was trying to scrape together $100million for Terry Gilliam to direct Watchmen, and hired Sam Hamm to draft the screenplay.

What Hamm came up with would have blown Burton's Batman to pieces. It has infinitely more substance the Zack Snyder's version, and with Terry Gilliam's style could have been… well, we'll never know.

Joel Silver couldn't get $100million and the project was shelved, consigned to development hell for two decades.

You can read Sam Hamm's Watchmen here;

4) Alien III by William Gibson

There were 30 scripts written for Alien III. Three-Zero. There was the famed 'wooden spaceship draft'. David Twohy, who went on to write Pitch Black and The Chronicles of Riddick, wrote an excellent treatment of the story.

His draft involved a prison spaceship, killing off Ripley and following a pack of prisoners who must stage an outer-space prison break while simultaneously survivng the alien terror.

Kind of like the best scene in Riddick for a whole movie. With Aliens.

But my favourite draft is from Neuromancer writer William Gibson, and it is my favourite for this one simple reasons; William Gibson wrote it.

This is the man who invented the internet, people. Conceptually anyway. No William Gibson = no matrix, no cyberspace.

His vision for Alien III is a dark treatise on the meaning of humanity, the role of darwinism in the evolution of the universe, and it properly tackled the Alien-Human hybrid long before Resurrection f-ed it up.

You can read it here;

What’s the best screenplay ever written?