Rise of the Guardians

Movie: Directed by Peter Ramsey.

Inciting Event: Nicholas St. North, the Guardian of Wonder, assembles the rest of the guardians to warn them of the possible rise of the Bogeyman, Pitch Black. Their leader, the spirit of the Man in the Moon, decides their only hope is the recruitment of winter spirit Jack Frost.

First Plot Point: Upon bringing Jack Frost to North’s lair in the North Pole, the Guardians are dismayed to learn Jack has no interest in joining their team as a Guardian. Telling him the Man in the Moon handpicked him only succeeds in pushing him farther from the idea, though Jack is now part of the conflict whether he likes it or not.

First Pinch Point: Toothiana, the Guardian of Memories, is horrified to learn Pitch has stolen and hidden away her fairies and teeth. They learn this is part of a much bigger plot to erase the Guardians from the minds of children, so Pitch can replace them as the sole object of the children’s beliefs.

Midpoint: While the Guardians trying to collect the children’s teeth to restore belief in Toothiana, Pitch intervenes with his army of nightmares in the physical form of horses. Using them, he overpowers the Sandman and kills him, successfully ensuring that children only have bad dreams, strengthening their belief in him in turn.

Second Pinch Point: While beginning the process of painting eggs for Easter, Jack is led to Pitch’s lair while returning a small child home. Pitch then taunts him with his memories and fear of non-belief, distracting him long enough for Pitch to destroy the eggs, causing children to stop believing in Easter and Bunnymund, the Guardian of Hope.

Third Plot Point: Losing the Guardians’ trust, Jack isolates himself in Antarctica, where Pitch tries to convince him to join his side. When Jack refuses, Pitch threatens to kill Baby Tooth unless Jack gives him his staff. He agrees, but Pitch breaks Jack’s staff and throws him down a chasm, leaving Jack powerless, trapped, and dejected.

Climax: After unlocking his memories with the teeth encased in one of Toothiana’s stolen tooth cases, Jack learns he died saving the life of his younger sister by using fun to ease tension and distract her from fear. Inspired, Jack fixes his staff and travels to the home of Jamie Bennet, who is on the verge of losing hope in Bunnymund. Jack renews Jamie’s belief in the Guardians and himself, and assembles the Guardians and a handful of Jamie’s friends to battle Pitch and his army.

Climactic Moment: Thanks to Jack’s use of joy and personal connection to children, Pitch and his influence is weakened, resulting in the Sandman’s resurrection. Outnumbered and disbelieved in, Pitch tries to retreat, but his nightmares cause him to be trapped in his lair.

Resolution: With Pitch defeated and the Guardians’ power and belief partially restored, Jack earns his place among the Guardians as the Guardian of Fun, and flies off with his new comrades to finish restoring children’s faith around the world.

(Submitted by Evian Williams.)

Sign Up Today

hwba sidebar pic

Sign up to receive K.M. Weiland’s monthly e-letter and receive her free e-book Crafting Unforgettable Characters: A Hands-On Introduction to Bringing Your Characters to Life.