Posts Tagged ‘movie’

2024 June 4, 12:54pm; June 5, 10:43am; June 6, 19:46 California (Mille merci, chere Sabine!)


Claudine's balcony garden, Paris

Dear Readers

I wish you a good day and night, always.

Thank you, Mr. Roald Dahl, for having written ESIO TROT (  esiotrot is “tortoise” spelled backward)

Thank you, screenwriters Richard Curtis and Paul Mayhew-Archer, for the movie ROALD DAHL’S ESIO TROT

When depression robs my creative energy to write, I look for “happy movies” to lift me which then inspires me to write about the themes in the movie which then leads me to resume working on my own projects.

Yesterday (June 3), the names (“tags”) of these two actors helped me find the movie ROALD DAHL’S ESIO TROT

Judi Dench (as Mrs. Silver) and Dustin Hoffman (as Mr. Hoppy) and James Corden (as Narrator)

Soundtrack includes Louis Armstrong’s singing “A Kiss To Build A Dream On” composed by Bert Kalmar, Harry Ruby and Oscar Hammerstein II.


This is a movie I want to watch again and again… it’s like re-living a joyful day.

In the movie… Narrator tells us:

“Mr. Hoppy, the hero of our story, lived in a nice flat in an apartment block in London. There are three things you should know about Mr. Hoppy.  He’s kind, he’s shy, and, most importantly, he’s not that guy in the hat.”

(Mr. Hoppy is the man holding the elevator door for  Mr. Mavrokoukoudopolous the old man with the hat and cane. By the way, since the setting is London. Elevator is called a “lift”)

At the fourth viewing of this movie … I see just how wonderfully the story is crafted.

At  two minutes into the movie – first foreshadowing of Mr. Hoppy’s door which is crucial for the “climax” scene.

He turns on his CD player – Louis Armstrong’s singing “A Kiss To Build A Dream On”

Mr. Hoppy reaches into his satchel and places into his fruit bowl – one apple, one orange, one banana.  He opens his refrigerator, we see one tomato.

Narrator tells us “It’s [This story is] going to be full of passion, surprises… as indeed is our Mr. Hoppy.”

As the volume of the musical instrumental increases, we see Mr. Hoppy affectionately tending to his balcony-garden; his irrigation system drips water onto the colorful plants.

Narrator says:

“The truth is, there were two loves in Mr. Hoppy’s life. One was his flowers. The other was his secret love that he kept all to himself. Like so many secrets, it was the most important thing of all about him. Because Mr. Hoppy was in love… with the girl downstairs.”

(“the girl” is the vibrant Mrs. Silver, a widow,, probably in her seventies. Mrs. Silver’s balcony is on the floor below Mr. Hoppy’s.  We hear her at around four minutes and thirty-three seconds into the movie when she says “Good morning, Mr. Hoppy.”  Then we see her.    Her main love is her tortoise named Alfie.)

By the end of the first five minutes, I am pulled into the story world.

By the end of the first seven minutes, I am completely hooked with these two characters.

At 13:36 when Mr. Hoppy has the courage to say something personal to Mrs. Silver, he can’t see from his balcony that Mrs. Silver (in her wide-brimmed straw hat) has just inserted earbuds and couldn’t possibly hear him.

At 28:57 we see the second foreshadowing with Mr. Hoppy’s door.

At 54:38 we see the third foreshadowing with that door.


In the scene where Mr. Hoppy is approaching the lift in the lobby with THE gadget, Mrs. Silver (wearing happy colors) is coming out of the lift. She tells him that she’s going to a dance marathon to raise money for charity and that they need sponsors. Mr. Hoppy says he would like to be a sponsor, would donate a pound. When Mrs. Silver reminds him that this is for charity, he says:
“A pound a minute”

(I laughed out loud; laughing shifts energy, lifts depression. So does smiling for one’s self.  For me, laughing is a stronger elixir.)

I learned these British phrases:

“very good news”  -  In the lift (elevator), Mrs. Silver says:  “What a quiet lift. It’s very good news.”

She calls herself “a silly sausage”

“a good old knees-up” means “to dance”

The little boy’s mother says to her son: “I’m doing dinner.”


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

In the children’s book, Mrs. Silver never finds out about Mr. Hoppy’s using deception to win her affections; in the movie, her finding out that he used trickery serves as the climax of the story.

In the children’s book, there is no Mr. Pringle;  in the movie, this character serves as archetypes Herald and Trickster and is the person who creates complications for protagonist Mr. Hoppy.

 * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Directed by Dearbhla Walsh

Writing Credits:

Richard Curtis and Paul Mayhew-Archer

Based on the novel by Roald Dahl


Stars (in order of appearance in the movie)

    • James Corden
    • Salo Gardner
    • Dustin Hoffman
    • Richard Cordery
    • Judi Dench
    • Awards
      • 1 win & 1 nomination
    In the movie, Mrs. Silver tells Mr. Hoppy and Mr. Springer that her favorite book is THE RAILWAY CHILDREN, children’s book written by E. (Edith) Nesbit

    Sasa's vibrant garden 2024.05.22 photo by Jade

    Thank you for reading my blog post: “Roald Dahl’s story ESIO TROT, Judi Dench, Dustin Hoffman, Balcony Garden, Love, Kindness Themes…Lift Depression”

    Wishing you all the happiness that a vibrant garden would bring.


     Teresa Jade LeYung

    My short short movies of Paris 2024 goes to Teresa Jade LeYung’s Blog on Wellness, Themes, Archetypes
    Published author, blogger, lover of Paris (France), Writing Coach, Photo Historian Teresa Jade LeYung says:
    “I love helping writers identify the themes in their manuscripts to hook readers, and, build and fortify their platforms before and after publication. Reach out, not stress out.”

    Love Made Of Heart ®





    Writing Coach Teresa Jade LeYung on Editing Panel at 2015 San Francisco Writers Conference

    Filmed by author Margie Yee Webb



    2012 May 13 Blog Post

    Writing Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan asks:

    “If your protagonist doesn’t want anything, then what is the story?”


    Happy Mother’s Day to mother-archetypes all over the world! To honor my MaMah today, I’m watching the movie Garbo Talks (written by Larry Grusin; directed by Sidney Lumit; music by Cy Coleman)  about a son who takes action to get the one thing his dying mother really wants–to meet the movie star Greta Garbo.

    One of my favorite scenes in this movie is the conversation (at the beach) between Gilbert Rolfe (the son, portrayed by Ron Silver) and the gay man/kind stranger Bernie Whitlock (portrayed by Harvey Fierstein).  The dialogue shows not only what Gilbert wants but also what Bernie wants.  What Gilbert wants is specific; what Bernie wants is universal.

    A photographer who has spied on Garbo before tells Gilbert “. . . she’ll disappear if she sees you . . . ”

    When Gilbert finally finds the movie star (after 3 months of doing), he knows that he must make every word count to hook her attention before she runs away.

    Then, the monologue by the mom (Estelle Rolfe, portrayed by Anne Bancroft) in the hospital bed as she speaks to Garbo . . . oh my goodness.

    Lines are beautifully written, directed, delivered, and edited.  What a story! And the music! I will study the script again.

    * * * * * * *

    Speaking of what a protagonist wants, mothers, meetings, monologues . . . I’ve written a 10-minute play (Answer Me Now–a monologue) about a middle-aged woman asking her dead mom a question.

    My play and eight colleagues’ plays will be performed on June 29, 30 and July 1st, 2012 at the Redwood Writers & 6th Street Playhouse Play Festival in Santa Rosa, CA.   I’d love to see my friends there.

    * * * * * * *

    Writers, go through your manuscript and look for the “want” on every page. Who wants what in this scene, in this conversation, or passage? How does each character go after (or not) what she/he wants?



    Coach Teresa

    Editor, Story Consultant, Platform-Building Coach




    Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan has helped over 1,000 writers.

    “Reach out, not stress out, to materialize your dearest dreams.”



    In The Apartment (script by Billy Wilder and  I.A.L. Diamond ), the 2 protagonists are C.C. Baxter, an insurance clerk (whose apartment is much in demand by four executives for their extramarital activities) and Miss Kubelik, an elevator operator in the insurance company (who is described by Baxter as a “perfectly respectable girl”).

    Then there’s Miss Olsen. She is secretary to Jeff Sheldrake who is head of Personnel. Miss Olsen appears in only a few scenes, yet, she personifies multiple archetypes—shape-shifter; herald, but also threshold guardian; antagonist, but also ally. Her character fascinates me. Baxter’s and Kubelik’s heroes’ journeys would not have begun if not for the action of this not-so-minor character.

    For more information about the movie







    C.C. Baxter -  portrayed by Jack Lemmon

    Miss Kubelik – Shirley MacLaine

    Jeff Sheldrake – Fred MacMurray

    Dr. Dreyfuss-  Jack Kruschen

    Miss Olsen – Edie Adams





    May your major and not-so-minor characters be memorable!

    I recommend your studying The Writer’s Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers by Christopher Vogler and The Plot Whisperer: Secrets of Story Structure Any Writer Can Master by Martha Alderson.

    Happy writing and rewriting!

    Editor / Manuscript Consultant / Coach Teresa LeYung-Ryan

    Teresa is author of Build Your Writer’s Platform & Fanbase In 22 Days: Attract Agents, Editors, Publishers, Readers, and Media Attention NOW

    Teresa is author of Love Made of Heart

    Coach Teresa edits manuscripts (contemporary novels; thrillers; children’s novels; memoirs) for authors who want to attract agents  & publishers  OR  want to be their own publishers.


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