the problem is closing in on the objective characters
Overall, stories feel like "uppers" or "downers." This is not a description of whether or not things turn out okay in the end, but a sense of direction created by the kind of tension that permeates the story up to the moment of climax. When the focus is on characters doggedly pursuing a Solution, the story feels positive. When the focus is on characters being dogged by a relentless Problem, the story feels negative. Another way to appreciate the difference is to look at the Main Character. An audience can sense whether the author feels a Main Character should or should not change. If the character is growing toward the proper choice, the story feels positive. If he is growing toward the improper choice, the story feels negative. Both these views are created by the friction between the Objective view that indicates what is truly needed to solve the problem and the Subjective view of the Main Character as to what seems to be the solution to the problem.