Daily Dialogue theme next week: Revelation.
Scott Myers

Daily Dialogue theme: Revelation

Taken from Stranger Than Fiction:

Harold Crick: I’m not exactly sure it was plot. I was hoping you’d say it was just a really bad coincidence.

Professor Jules Hilbert: Meeting an insurance agent the day your policy runs out is coincidence. Getting a letter from the emperor saying he’s visiting is plot. Having your apartment eaten by a wrecking ball… is something else entirely. Harold, you don’t control your fate.

Harold Crick: I know.

Professor Jules Hilbert: You do?

(They leave the building to walk outside.)

Professor Jules Hilbert: You were right. This narrator might very well kill you so I humbly suggest that you just forget all this and go live your life.

Harold Crick: Go live my life? I am living my life. I’d like to continue to live my life.

Professor Jules Hilbert: I know. Of course. I mean all of it. However long you have left. You know, I mean, Harold, you could use it to have an adventure. You know, invent something, or just finish reading ‘Crime and Punishment’. Hell, Harold, you could just eat nothing but pancakes if you wanted.

Harold Crick: What’s wrong with you? Hey. I don’t want to eat nothing but pancakes. I wanna live. I mean who in their right mind in a choice between pancakes and living chooses pancakes?

Professor Jules Hilbert: Harold, if you’d pause to think I believe you’d realize that that answer’s inextricably contingent upon the type of life being led and, of course, the quality of the pancakes. You don’t understand what I’m saying.

Harold Crick: Yes. I do. But you have to realize that this isn’t a philosophy or a literary theory or a story to me. It’s my life.

Professor Jules Hilbert: Absolutely. So just go make it the one you’ve always wanted.

On Revelation: Immediately prior to this scene, at Professor Hilbert’s request, Harold had agreed to an experiment to determine whether or not he could control the outcome of the narration he’d been hearing in his head throughout the movie. When Professor Hilbert tells Harold that he doesn’t control his fate, his surprise at hearing Harold admit that he already knew that is evident (which begs the question why they needed to conduct the aforementioned experiment in the first place). This scene comes halfway through the movie and Harold’s behavior noticeably changes now that he’s accepted his fate. In this scene, both characters have their own revelation that determine how the plot unfolds from that point on.