Don’t Try to Reinvent the Wheel
Take a look at the following synopsis: “A high school senior from the wrong side of the tracks longs for adventure, sophistication, and opportunity, but finds none of that in her Sacramento Catholic high school. Our film follows the character’s senior year in high school, including her first romance, her participation in the school play, and, most importantly, applying for college.” That is the official synopsis for the Oscar-winning film Lady Bird – and it should serve as a lesson to everyone who thinks that they need a “great idea” before they can start writing a movie.
No need to over react if you can't think of a good idea.
The great ideas in this film came out of the screenwriter’s effort to produce an original piece of work, and they are integrated into the screenplay, but the core idea itself would be categorized by “idea pitchers” as “boring” at its worst or “simple” at its best. Movies like Lady Bird, The Florida Project, Before Midnight, Reservoir Dogs, Friday, Dazed and Confused, Dark River, Beast, and Wild, to name just a few, are the ultimate proof, in my opinion, that a great movie plot idea is nice to have, but it means nothing at the end of the day. The only thing that matters is “the screenplay” as a whole, the complete body of work. It’s your ticket to making an amazing film, not the “great plot idea.”
"Storytelling is about two things; the Character and the Plot" ~George Lucas
A story about a young girl being molested by her father has been done many different times and ways. Dark River was still able to turn an unoriginal premise and turn it into an original plot.