The tone of the film and the catalyst
Detective story always carries a tense and dynamic tone with elements of thriller such as sharp turning points and strong confrontation between protagonist and antagonist. However, The Witness includes love story, which means it brings melodramatic, humorous and carefree tones into the plot.
A-story: Catalyst happens in station scene, when boy Samuel accidentally witnesses brutal murder of a man in bathroom. This scene pushes the story forward and grabs viewer’s attention.
B-story: Catalyst in side (love) story happens when detective John Book meets Rachel for the first time at the station.
Major dramatic question of the story.
The Witness poses the question „Will detective John Book, the defencer of truth, succeed in investigation of policeman’s murder, facing with all obstacles or he will fail?”
The First Turning Point of "The Witness"
A-story: First turning point in the main story takes place when Samuel identifies murderer from the station’s bathroom as a police lieutenant James McFree. It means that the corrup policeman will be ready for everything in order to keep his plans secret.
B-story: First turning point in the relationship between John and Rachel is when they dance together in the barn while car radio plays Wonderful World. They almost share a kiss, but strict rules stop them. Even Eli’s critique can not change her opinion and attitude towards John Book.
The Second Turning Point
A-story: Second turning point in the plot happens when John Book calls to the office and finds out that his partner Carter has been killed. Enraged, he calls the corrupt Schaeffer and threatens him. This act provokes Schaeffer to come to Amish village and end up with Book and the witness.
B-story: The second turning point appears when Rachel got the news that John is leaving next day, she decides to show her feelings openly and shares with him a passionate kiss in the field. This point becomes the „point of decision“. After they both revealed their feelings to each other, each of them should decide what they are going to do afterwards-be together or go on without any changes in their lives.