Amateur Friday Submission Process: To submit your script for an Amateur Review, send in a PDF of your script, along with the title, genre, logline, and finally, something interesting about yourself and/or your script that you’d like us to post along with the script if it gets reviewed. Use my submission address please: Carsonreeves3@gmail.com. Remember that your script will be posted. If you’re nervous about the effects of a bad review, feel free to use an alias name and/or title. It’s a good idea to resubmit every couple of weeks so your submission stays near the top.

Genre: Crime-Thriller
Premise: (from writer) After looting one of two priceless statuettes known as the Twins in Iraq, a couple of down-on-their-luck veterans must traverse the U.S. criminal underworld on a quest to sell it — not realizing that the owner of the other Twin is a high-ranking intelligence official who will stop at nothing to get his hands on their statue.
About: (from writer) Ever since uploading my short “J-W-G” at the tail end of Shorts Week, I’ve been fielding a surprising number of requests from ScriptShadow readers for a feature-length script of mine. So here it is — a classic crime road movie in the vein of “True Romance” or the original “Getaway.” I don’t think there was a single decent example of the subgenre written in the 2000s, let alone in the 2010s.”
Writer: Ellen Starkweather
Details: 116 pages

h2_29.100.370

So last week around 12am Friday morning, I started getting e-mails, like lots of e-mails, all thanking me for an opportunity to finally read one of Ellen Starkweather’s scripts. I was confused. Who was Ellen Starkweather? I’d never heard of her before. Was she some sort of internet celebrity? I started doing some investigating. And what I found was that during shorts week, Ellen had posted her short in the comments section and a lot of writers had really liked it. They wanted to know if she’d written any features. Hence the excitement over her script.

Having said that, The Twin came out on what some people have called the best Amateur Offerings Week ever. The quality on display was impressive. So I’m setting the bar pretty high today. If this is taking a spot that could have gone to several others, then it has to prove its worth. I wasn’t thrilled when I noticed a six-line paragraph on the first page (more on that later), but I was excited to be a part of the Ellen Starkweather story!

The Twin starts out with a really nifty 8 page montage starting in the year 1349 (during the bubonic plague) and ending in the present. In it, we see a Sculptor construct two little mini-statues of a girl. The only difference is that one is nicked. We then watch, through the years, as the statues change hands many times, usually through war and bloodshed. At some point they’re split up, and hundreds of years later is when our main character, Ann, becomes a part of their lore.

Ann is a marine who happened to be on the patrol that invaded Saddam Hussein’s palace during the Iraq War. While strolling down the halls, she comes upon a room full of art. And there it is. The twin! Ann, for reasons that aren’t clear to us yet, knows exactly what the twin sculpture is and discreetly slides it in her backpack.

The plan is obviously to sell it once back home, but on her way back to base, her and her patrol get hit by an IED! Half of Ann’s face is blown off, making her look like the female version of Two-Face! Lucky for Ann though, she survives, and she’s able to take the statue back to America. But when she gets there, someone else has found out about the twin, and is holding her OWN twin sister, Carol, for trade (yes Ann has a twin sister)! She must give them the statue or her sister dies.

Ann, however, has no interest in saving her sister. Her sister stole her boyfriend three years ago and she’s still bitter. She just wants to kill all these men except for one so she can get the name of the secret collector who’s willing to pay 17 million for the twin. Why would anyone pay 17 million for a sculpture? Because this collector has the OTHER TWIN. If he gets Ann’s twin, he’ll have the set!

So Ann finds one of her old platoon members, Travis, to help her infiltrate the place where Carol’s being held. The infiltration goes bad, however, and they accidentally kill all the bad guys, leaving them with no one to give them the Collector’s name. This forces Ann to go back to her ex-boyfriend, Paul, the one who banged her sister, and cut him in on the deal if he can give them the name of the person who knows the Collector (never really understood how he’d know this person).

In the meantime, a federal agent, Brian, finds out about this madness and wants in! So he kidnaps Carol and forces her to tell her where her sister’s going. Also, independent of all of this, there are some ex-marines who were screwed over by Travis in some deal-gone-wrong who now want revenge! So THEY come after Ann and Travis as well.

Ann and Travis go to Indianopolis to meet someone named Spider, and eventually to Miami, where they finally meet “the Collector.” But it turns out the Collector is the CIA DIRECTOR! And to be honest, I still don’t know what that means. Either the director DID own the other twin piece, or this was all a big trap, or both. Naturally, then, Ann and Travis are going to have to take him down if they want to survive!

You may have noticed that I went into a little more detail today with the summary than I normally do, and I did that for a reason. The Twin’s big problem is it’s over-plotted. There are too many disparate things going on. Now I’ve seen this practice work before, but only when a writer is meticulous in his plotting and in his attention to detail, when he/she makes every single story thread clear as day so we always know who’s who and what’s going on.

I didn’t get that here. Everything felt rushed and sloppy. You can’t rush a story when there are this many things going on. For example, Tex? The guy after Travis? We don’t care about him. Why? Because we don’t even know what Travis did to anger him. The stuff about the black market bullet trade was never explained well. And to be honest, I didn’t really know Travis either. I just saw him as some guy Ann bumped into on the street (literally) who decided to join the mission. But that’s what I mean. Nothing is really clear (Travis, Travis’ pursuers) so it all felt sloppily thrown together.

Or take Carol. Why is Carol a twin? I can’t think of any reason for it. The fact that we have twins never plays into this at all. They could’ve just as easily been regular sisters. Or friends. When you include twins in an intricately plotted thriller, there’s gotta be a plot reason for it. There has to be some switching places (which, I know, would mean removing the whole damaged face thing). There’s gotta be some cool reason for why you do it. Or else what’s the point?

Or the fact that Ann wanted this statue in the first place. I’m not opposed to someone’s sole motivation being money. But it’s better to have a compelling motivation for why they want that money. Maybe it’s to save a family member, save a home, leave and live on the pristine beaches of Mexico forever. Why did Ann want this money so bad? The motivation is sold to us in the middle of the script that she wants the best reconstructive surgeon in the world to redo her face. But she didn’t lose her face until AFTER she snagged the sculpture. So what was her original motivation?

And then you’d just get strange scenes, like in the middle of the script, Travis tries to sneak out of their motel with the sculpture. Ann catches him, tries to slit his throat, fails, he tries to shoot her, fails, then they both just look at each other, go back inside, and act like it never happened. Like they didn’t just try to kill each other. What??? Nothing here felt thought-through at all.

And that’s the big problem. I think Ellen’s got a lot of talent. In fact, I’d even say, please send me any future scripts you have, Ellen. You can write! But you can’t send subpar stuff out there that you whipped up on a tight time frame and expect to compete with people with the same amount of talent who’ve done 20 drafts. Because believe me, those people are out there. No matter how many terribly written movies hit the theaters, I can promise you, the competition in the trenches of the screenwriting business is FIERCE. You got a lot of smart good writers all competing for those big checks.

This script started out great and has potential. If I were Ellen, I’d strip out all the unnecessary stuff (like Tex), spend more time building up your characters (I want to know why Ann wants this money so bad. I want to know who Travis is period), and slow down. Take your time explaining the plotlines so we actually understand what’s going on. I never understood the black market ammo business backstory. I wasn’t clear on who the Collector was in the end or what his motivation was. In the act of trying to outsmart the audience, you outsmarted the story. Keep it simpler and stupider!

Script link: The Twin

[ ] what the hell did I just read?
[x] wasn’t for me
[ ] worth the read
[ ] impressive
[ ] genius

What I learned: I often rail against large paragraphs in scripts (anything over 4 lines). They just aren’t necessary. HOWEVER, there is an exception. It’s okay to use a big paragraph when you’re actually describing something interesting. Not a person, or a home, or a club. All of those things can typically be relayed in 2 or 3 lines. But something that conveys a powerful image. The reason I ended up being okay with that 6 line paragraph on page 1 of The Twin was that it conveyed a powerful image.  It was striking. And in those cases, a big chunky paragraph is fine. Here it is: “The dead in the cart are men, women and children, piled together haphazardly. Commoners’ rags, soldiers’ tunics, the bright green spill of a noblewoman’s gown… Their extremities are either blackened by gangrene or covered with pale, golf ball-sized swellings. These swellings are buboes, the tell-tale signs of bubonic plague.”

  • Gregory Mandarano

    I thought this script had an incredibly strong opening. I wasn’t expecting much, and by the time we reached Iraq I was completely riveted and invested in the story. Well, sort of. There’s no character to latch onto in the beginning, so we developed an attachment to the statuette. Unfortunately after the story got back to the states I sort of felt the bottom drop out, and found myself finding it difficult to care for Ann or identify with her after her injury. The story got convoluted and hard to follow as it went on. I agree with Carson’s appraisal and think more time should be spent really fleshing things out and eliminating unnecessary sub plots and characters. Also, what’s up with all these scripts I read where action lines aren’t proper sentences. I know people do it for pacing or style, but I am always thrown off by incomplete sentences and broken phrases. Is it really that hard to keep pacing and descriptive writing while also writing full sentences? It seems like about half the writers out there do this, and I don’t know if it’s ultimately good or bad. What do you folks think? All in all I think Ellen is a good writer, but the twin just isn’t there yet.

    • IgorWasTaken

      It’s also disorienting for me, at first. But so is Shakespeare. Once I calibrate my brain for it, all is good.

      “A grand piano in the tiny living room of a small apartment.”

      GM, is that one of the sorts of things throwing you off?

      Or: “Jane enters, desperately searches for her bag. Finds it!”

      • Gregory Mandarano

        The first one igor. Little snippets never bothered me, but the first example drives me bonkers. It’s like, is it so hard to write “A grand piano sits in the tiny living room of a small apartment.”

        What doesn’t bother me though is when it’s use to save an action line from going to two lines instead of one. I’m all for saving space, but not nonstop at the sacrifice of the read. Granted ultimately stuff like this takes a distant back seat to the story and dialogue, but wouldn’t a writer, especially an amateur, want to maximize the read?

        • IgorWasTaken

          But, wait? A grand piano rests on its legs. So does it STAND in the living room?

          Actually, on reconsideration, I might write that it “owned” the room or the like.

          Sometimes I write without the verbs, and then as a read it later, it feels dead that way. OTOH, “dead” may be what I want sometimes. Almost any verb suggests action of some sort. Not that I’d write it this way (probably), but “There’s a piano in the living room” somehow is not the same as “A piano in the living room.” For me, even with just the verb to be, the first way seems part of a continuum, while the latter is… THERE.

          For example, after an action-packed chase scene. The good-guy cop, Tony, chases and chases the bad guy… but he gets away. Shit! Then cut to: “A grand piano in the tiny living room of a small apartment. Tony enters.”

          Versus, a couple sneaks off from a big party back to the girl’s place. “A grand piano owns the tiny living room of April’s small apartment. The sound of her front door opening…” Bill (O.S.) says, “Wait, I thought you said you played the flute.”

          Sure, some things bother each of us regardless of the context. But often, we notice them because (for us, anyway) they simply don’t work.

          • Gregory Mandarano

            You’re absolutely right. Having a verb in the sentence brings it to life and allows you to flavor something that otherwise feels empty. A grand piano in the living room. A grand piano dominates the living room. The living room has a grand piano. The living room is cut by a grand piano. Full sentences convey more information in a more enjoyable way, especially when you take it a step further.

  • Alexander_B

    It seems to me Ellen has mastered smaller forms — absolutely loved her short and TV pilot.

    But a feature is a different beast entirely. You can’t just weld three shorts (or two TV pilots) together and hope it’ll work.

    Agree with Carson on this.

    Look forward to Ellen’s next script.

  • cjob3

    You should review a Colin O’Brien script. His script finished just above Ellen’s in the Post your TV Pilot competition. Granted, I’m Colin O’Brien, but still.

    • Steve

      Classy.

  • http://www.jorgeosvaldo.com/ Jorge Osvaldo

    I’m always intrigued by openings that deviate from the Blake Snyder/Michael Arndt template. They almost never work, but when they do they feel fresh. I enjoyed The Twin’s first 10 pages. I encourage Ellen Starkweather to consider rewriting the rest of the script so it resembles her intro; follow one unique character through interesting situations, and strip away anything that detracts from that main story driver. Force yourself to shave off 10 pages from the script, and the fat will naturally come off.

  • ximan

    This woman has talent, as Carson said, but I have to agree with his review. After being riveted and enthralled by the intro/prologue, the rest of the script just seemed to digress from there. But I truly wish her the best with the rewrite. Her style is completely admirable, she just needs to reign it in. Maybe even try a writing partner, or someone who could bring it in for her. Either way, best of luck!

  • Steve

    Hey Carson,

    Where’s the Grendl script Hunting For Nessy? I’ve set up a grendl script reading barbecue for this weekend, the beer’s already bought and the meat’s marinating, so hurry it up, man.

    Did a grendl script read with friends a few years ago and we almost bust a gut laughing. This was his 130 page psycho drama called Undertow. Completely drama free, but the dialogue was so ripe and pretentious it was a huge comedy hit, so we’re really stoked for the weekend.

    We still yell Hand! Hand! Hand! Hand! at each other when we’ve had a few too many drinks. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, try to get your hands on the Mystery Science Theater 3000-bad Undertow.

    • Alex Palmer

      Its on the newsletter, and the review is going to be posted on wednesday including the script link.

      I’ve read 15 pages of the script so far. I’m withholding judgement until finishing it, but it seems to be competent enough. Not exactly high praise, I know. The opening strikes me as a bit derivative; a glossed up version of the start of this trailer:

      • Awescillot

        Holy sh*t, it’s here. Checking my mailbox right now.

        I haven’t been here long enough to fully grasp what exactly will go down on Wednesday, but I’m sure the comment section won’t be the same ever again.

        • m_v_s

          I started reading and it’s actually quite endearing…up to page 15 so far.

  • Ellin Banks

    “In fact, I’d even say, please send me any future scripts you have, Ellen.”
    Wow. I’d actually prefer such sentiment to any script rating except for maybe “Genius” or “Impressive (Top 25)”. Is she really that decent of a writer?
    I haven’t read “The Twin” yet, sorry. Read her TV pilot and liked it.

  • Thomas China

    There’s a certain desperation… a hard-edged streetwise knowledge in this that I really admire.

    It reminded me of Paul Schrader’s early work — although I do hope Ellen doesn’t live out of her car with a gun in her lap.

    You can really tell “The Twin” wasn’t written by a soft, white, middle-class screenwriter… which probably makes it a first on Carson’s site!

    I guess that’s where most of Ellen’s problems stem from — she knows how things work in real life, but has no idea how they should work in a well-made script.

    Didn’t stop Paul Schrader, though.

    • Alexander_B

      Yeah, hah-hah, can you imagine a L.A. screenwriter singing such an ode to the mean streets of Indianapolis? “Extinguish me, bitch”… I don’t think so!

  • drifting in space

    The first 10 are extremely well written and captivating. That’s all I’ve read so far. Seems to be the trend in the comments. I’ll finish up later and report back!

  • ElectricDreamer

    Congrats to Ellen, I haven’t read the script yet. But…

    I was struck by Carson’s plot description when the brother-in-law gets sucked in.
    Exploring the relationship between those two on a wild adventure to unite the Twins.
    Now that scenario CRACKLES with CONFLICT.

    If it were me, that’s the dynamic I would cross-section and exacerbate in Act Two.
    Forget all those other post-it note characters. Stick to family for the most part.
    Let them run into your other characters TOGETHER.
    Then spin it for Act Three (somehow) to make it feel like a “new facet” of the same story.

    Maybe the heroine discovers that the brother-n-law isn’t the 2-D a-hole she thought.
    She learns more from him about her sister than she thought possible, etc.
    That kind of drama makes readers wish away those bullets that could end the protags.

    My two cents. *plink*

  • Panos Tsapanidis

    Carson, was that the best statue you could find in Google Images? :p

  • klmn

    OT: Here’s my review of Miss ScriptShadow’s sketch in the latest newsletter. The most telling detail is that Grendl is missing the lower part of his body. I interpret this as a portent of Carson’s pending review.

    Also, Grendl has attracted three flying insects. Flies, perhaps? Maybe this is a natural consequence of losing his lower body. Or is it a further comment on Grendl’s work? It is noteworthy that Carson is shown insect free.

    Be very afraid, Grendl.

    • GeneralChaos

      “The most telling detail is that Grendl is missing the lower part of his body. I interpret this as a portent of Carson’s pending review.”

      Half-assed?

      • Linkthis83

        Per the drawing, wouldn’t that be no-assed? Or that the story just doesn’t have legs to stand on.

        • GeneralChaos

          Grendl gets cut off at the knees?
          Didn’t see the drawing. I can’t seem to find the newsletter in my email.

          • Linkthis83

            Pretty much at the waist. Do you want me to forward you the newsletter.

          • GeneralChaos

            Sure. juemad12 at gee mail dot com
            Thanks

          • Linkthis83

            Sent

          • GeneralChaos

            Got it. Thanks!

  • GeneralChaos

    Cage fight.

    • Ellin Banks

      Carson should make a Friday out of it!

      Two TV pilots enter, one leaves.

      • drifting in space

        That would be a fun theme every now and then. Battle of the Amateur Fridays! A la Hunger Games.

  • Alexander_B

    Oh, one more thing I wanted to add: this script is really damn quotable. “Marble action figure,” heheheh. For some reason, Travis reminds me of Christopher Moltisanti, the dumb fuck.

  • drifting in space

    As long as they are spares, I don’t have an issue with a few longer paragraphs. It’s when they chain together where I feel like I’m plugging through a novel rather than a screenplay.

  • Alexander_B

    Oh jake that! Please review her TV pilot.

  • cjob3

    Assuming this isn’t sarcasm; thank you!

    • thelastglance

      No sarcasm intended! Love your work and rooting for you! NSFW is one of the funniest damn scripts I’ve ever read. Hope it gets the attention it deserves!

  • Citizen M

    A well written hard-boiled action drama, but I agree with Carson — the individual parts don’t fit together. There are too many unexplained developments and relationships.

    I think some of it is deliberate. In general terms, the writer is withholding information that the bad guy is on their tail so we can get a jump scare when the bad guy turns up unexpectedly. But there is a cost to doing it this way. Lack of suspense. If we know the bad guy is on to them, we anticipate the moment of confrontation. We stay involved and anxious instead of being mere spectators to the action.

    Then there’s a pet bugbear of mine: when characters refer to some incident that happened in the past or off-screen, and we never learn what it is. For instance, there was some snafu between Travis and Ann in the past that causes him to punch her in the face. We never learn what it is. Then there’s something about a marine sniper recon patrol comprised of three snipers and three spotters. Four of them were Oswald, Whitman, and their two spotters. I assumed Travis and Ann were the other two and something happened between them. But no, Tex was the other sniper and the connection between Tex, Travis and Ann is never explained AFAIK.

    Who was Spider in Detroit? Who the fuck was bad boy Hollander? Seemingly some ex high-up in the CIA, but no motivation for him to get involved or do what he did to the statue. Why was Tex involved? Was Brian a real cop? Too many damned questions. It left me unsatisfied. I assumed that by the end of the script all would be revealed and we’d understand the whole chain of events, but no. I don’t understand.

    Maybe the writer knows her story too well and doesn’t realize the rest of us can’t easily fit the puzzle pieces together. If she is willing to take notes and do some rewriting I think this could be a pretty good script.

    • IgorWasTaken

      Citizen M wrote: “Then there’s a pet bugbear of mine: when characters refer to some incident that happened in the past or off-screen, and we never learn what it is.

      There are two kinds of people in the world: Those who are bothered by that sort of thing, and those who aren’t. You’re in the first group; I’m in the latter.

      Now sure, sometimes it’s dangling in a bad way, but sometimes it’s not.

      Unfortunately for me (and others) as a writer, there are a substantial number of people in your group, CM. So any writer shopping a script with your pet bugbear in it is taking a true chance.

      • Alexander_B

        Why the fuck Marcellus Wallace threw Tony Rocky Horror out of that four-story window?

      • Citizen M

        It depends how important the missing information is to the story. In this case our two heroes have a bunch of snipers intent on killing them. I think that needs an explanation. What did they do to earn their enmity? It’s a bomb-under-the-table scenario. If we know there’s a bomb there we experience suspense. If we know our heroes have pissed off a bunch of marine snipers who have sworn revenge we experience suspense.

        Or take when Travis goes to Spider to learn who The Collector is. It is highly unlikely a motor mechanic would know of a wealthy mystery art collector. Let that pass. Travis walks in, and walks out with an email address, a body on the shop floor and the place on fire. What went down? More than just throwing someone out the window (to cite another comment). There was some serious mayhem there and I want to see it. This is an action movie. Don’t leave out the action.

        Put it this way: allow the audience to connect some dots, but don’t make it too difficult. Guy thrown from window — we can figure out what happened. Two carefully-aimed shots come through window — WTF? We need to know more.

    • Alexander_B

      “Who was Spider in Detroit? Who the fuck was bad boy Hollander?”

      I think it’s more a question of writing style than not thinking stuff through. Some writers explain every detail in their script to their readers’ satisfaction. Some go for the big laugh: we never ever SAW the murdered dude’s face, let alone learned his hopes and dreams and motivation!

      My rule of thumb is, you can get away with one such scene per script. After that, it’s not big laughs, it’s confusion.

  • charliesb

    I’ve been reading this site for 2+ years. And for the first time since I found it, I really started to feel for Carson. I read maybe 2 or 3 scripts a week at most. Most of the time I read the first few pages of the Amateur offerings and then either quit because I get busy doing something else or the script doesn’t grab me. I cannot imagine what it’s like to be Carson or a paid script reader and have to read a shit ton of these scripts every week, because lately these scripts are really starting to piss me off.

    Now of course who am I to be pissed off because someone has spent hours and hours carefully crafting their script and then submitting it Scriptshadow looking for feedback? That’s definitely not something to get pissed off about right? – Especially when we have the bounty that is the Batman/Affleck casting to get our panties in a bunch about. But I’m really having trouble getting past the first few pages in anything that has been posted in the Amateur offerings over the last little while (today’s script not included – I haven’t read it yet), even the ones that people are raving about in the comments.

    Now I figured that there was a good chance I was projecting my frustrations with my own work onto others and so decided to go through the Top 25 recommended scripts from Carson and his Readers and surprise surprise, for the most part those scripts are great examples of what to do.

    Here are some suggestions on what not to do:

    1. Don’t submit until it’s perfect (or pretty freaking close). If this is your first or second (and for some of you third, fourth, fifth) draft. Keep working at it. If 25% of your script sucks* KEEP WORKING AT IT.

    2. A script is not a novel. Keep your flowery descriptions to a minimum. Your metaphors about your protagonists eyes make me want to jam a fork in mine.

    3. Your dialogue sucks. Ya I said it. Try reading it out loud. It’s clunky, awkward and it’s obvious. A strung out addict is not going to say “We’re nothing but income to you”. She’s going to say “Go fuck yourself!” Write, read, say aloud and then rewrite. Pretty please.

    4. Get clinical. I mean it. Take the Heisenberg approach, leave all emotion out of it and edit your script. Anything that even sounds like it might be a bit extraneous needs to be cut out salted and burned.

    5. Don’t think of Amateur friday as a way to get some great feedback on your almost there script (use the comments for that). Think of Amateur Friday as a way for your awesome ass script to get the attention of Carson and the industry; as a possible way behind the rope.

    Anyways, thanks for indulging my rant. I look forward to reading this weeks entries.

    *Sucks – obviously this word is relative. But if you really squint, I’m sure you can see something that sucks when it on the computer screen in front of you.

    • Linkthis83

      I understand the frustration. After going through the first 25 pages of three of the scripts last week, I could only skim the first 15 of the other two. But here’s what I realized and why I think your frustrations will continue:

      You/we are basically asking/demanding the amateurs to stop being amateurs. I could argue all day with a writer that they probably could’ve put forth more time and effort. That they should’ve had more people read it and give them feedback (who may be telling them they are ready). But if you are an amateur, you probably truly don’t KNOW when it’s ready. Right?

      If you have spent an incalculable amount of time in your own story, and add in that you don’t know what you don’t know, then you don’t know not to share it.

      I’m not saying you shouldn’t demand better because hopefully that will influence writers from here on out to truly challenge their stuff before submission. However, you also have the ability to understand the vast numbers of writers who submit incomplete stories. Heck, the stories from READERS alone make us aware of that.

      But ranting/venting can be a completely useful thing. Take note WRITERS, review that sh*t at least one more time…and treat it like a story that was handed to you to be viewed with a critical eye. Challenge the hell out of your choices, don’t make us do it for you ;)

      • charliesb

        While I do understand what you’re saying and can agree for the most part. I want Amateur Friday to be a place where we can read scripts that inspire us to do better. Where we can find gems that help good writers get their foot in the door. And where scripts that are pretty close to be being great can get that feedback that helps move the writer forward.

        We should be treating this site like the Olympics, where Amateur doesn’t mean substandard it just means you’re not getting paid.

        Obviously I know I have to be realistic, we are not going to find an awesome script every week. But we as writers need to be pragmatic. You’re only gonna get 1 shot if you’re lucky to make the front page.

        Make sure it’s your best work.

        • Linkthis83

          Charlie, honestly, I’m on your side. I want the same thing, but I believe it’s also our responsibility to understand where we are at. Every week each of us is hoping to find that gem of a script. Im fairly certain that was the genesis of AF by Carson. Why not increase the possibility of finding the next unknown, great story.

          There are just so many stories. So many. I honestly feel that AF could/should be used as more of a development tool. That’s why I lobbied a few weeks back for White Label to get a different rating other than ‘wasn’t for me.’ Carson stated that it wasn’t for him but that it deserved to be read. And I have to recognize that this is his site, I just felt adding in another designation ALONG with ‘wasn’t for me, deserves to be read’ would suffice.

          My other point would be, if amateurs KNEW for certain that their stories were ready, then there wouldn’t be so many consultants making money off of them. I think the burden is on both the writer and the reader. I think this is a relationship we need to accept.

          But again, I am on your side. I want the same thing too.

        • thedudespeaketh

          “Make sure it’s your best work.”

          I do agree. But I would guess that at least 99.9 % of the writers that submitted to Amateur Friday believed that their script was the best it could be.

          Am I missing something here?

          • Jonathan Soens

            I don’t know for sure, but I bet it’s not uncommon for somebody to submit something,and then once they get chosen they very quickly begin apologizing for it. Saying how it’s an early draft or how they have a handful of other changes in mind that haven’t been reflected yet in the draft that was submitted.

            I remember Carson saying something along those lines once, about how some people feel like gold when they submit the thing and it’s not until they get chosen for a review that they realize how far from ready they really were.

    • drifting in space

      I echo this. I said it a few weeks back about people submitting “almost there” scripts. I think of AmFri as a showcase of amateur talent, not a free notes section. Sometimes I feel we are sloughing through some real clunkers here.

      DISCLAIMER: I do think this script, although some longer paragraphs, is well written. But again, needs to be tightened up. I guess we all fall into the trap of rewrites. You’ve read something in your script 1000 times, you know what happens, it gets cut. We read it and are lost. It happened in my recent project, pretty bad too.

      Take some time away from it, come back and ruthlessly go through it again.Then do that again. THEN submit it.

      • Linkthis83

        A common issue for ME in regards to a lot of the AF scripts on here =

        The writer BELIEVES their core concept is cool/unique enough to carry the story. That if they make cool/unique/bold/dark character/story choices that will carry it. They BELIEVE that the reader will hang on long enough for their big/cool/unique concept to play out…..and we (I) won’t.

        I need to FEEL your characters. I need to FEEL your scenes. I need to FEEL the motivations.

        Next week’s AF script Beth Aven is a perfect example of this. Based on the logline most people would buy in. It’s a cool concept. However, in the first 20 pages of that script the logline is basically non-existant.

        It suffered (for me) greatly in it’s motivations for getting the story to the retreat. Because essentially, there were none. There were no discussions, conversations or arguments about going to the retreat. No explanation as to even why they would want to go or should go. On page 11 there’s some history given about the retreat and on page 12 they’re pulling into the parking lot. Doesn’t work for me. No matter how cool your concept is.

        But then, I will see readers/posters giving these things positive feedback. So then I must challenge myself as to what I am missing that these others are praising. So that’s why I qualify it by saying it’s my issue. But, I think that’s what a lot of the stories are missing the majority of the time = connecting to the reader (that’s what it is for me).

        EDIT: My apologies to all those who will re-read this rant again next Friday.

        • drifting in space

          From talking to you off this site, trust me, it isn’t your problem. You’ve got great insight into well told stories and character development.

          A lot of people, as you said, think their concept is enough to carry the story. An interesting, cool concept is just the beginning. Well crafted stories push this idea out, give it its legs.

          I don’t read a lot of the AmFri past the first 20 pages because nothing is MAKING ME need to finish it.

          However, on this site, on an article like AmFri, we’re going to also have AmReaders. 90% of us in the comments have not done coverage or given any notes. That is a very useful tool.

          If you read and give notes on something that CONNECTS to you, you’re going to take that feeling and translate it into your own work (hopefully, and not straight stealing btw).

          I personally know that from speaking with you, my rewrite is going to hit on that level. I broke it back down to the core and started working from the ground up again. It’s a whole new story, same idea, but it blossoms throughout. And part of that was having someone else take a look and discuss it with me.

          We’re all hear to help but you only get so much through comments. Connecting is key, forming relationships with other writers, having others take a look at your work. It’s a beautiful thing. And only helps your story.

          • Linkthis83

            Thanks…and uh….thanks. :) I may not be able to use story element terminology yet, but I do believe I can find the CORE of the story (the heart). I may like helping more than I like writing. Is there a career in that?

          • drifting in space

            Pretty sure that’s all Carson does, right?. Unless he also writes. In which case… we should have a turn the table day here on SS where we review HIS work. :)

          • Linkthis83

            I think the key difference is that you and I had a discussion about your story. I think that is what I’d be good at. Helping people develop their story and making their audience connect. I could be full of shit though. To date, I’ve helped ONE person. LOL. But as I continue down this road, I may discover where my true talent lies. Will people pay me to work WITH them to make their stories better? Anyone want to hire me for that? LOL. For now, I’ll just keep doing it for free because it’s making ME a better writer.

          • drifting in space

            I think if you continue down that path you’d be a great script consultant. Probably would need to provide coverage for a major studio before people hire you unless your rate is just unbelievably low. For what it’s worth, I thought you did a fantastic job. And whatever helps you become a better writer, it all works.

          • Linkthis83

            That’s a fun challenge. Carson, will you let me read one of your scripts and give you notes? To see if I’m any good at enhancing where a story may be lacking?

          • drifting in space

            I would love to read one of his scripts. Grendl would tear the SHIT out of it, I’m sure. ;)

          • http://atticofthefilmaddict.blogspot.com/ Matty

            I’ll read Carson’s script :-)

          • klmn

            This is from the About section of this site:

            “I was a terrible screenwriter. Like, beyond bad. I can’t tell you how many terrible screenplays I wrote. I once wrote a script about a man who was half-llama. I’m not kidding.”

            I want to read this script. Carson should post it.

          • Midnight Luck

            Is Carson: Cronenberg, or Carpenter?

          • klmn

            I don’t know, but there should be a Llamaman movie. America has Batman and Spiderman. Canada has Wolverine.

            Shouldn’t there be a Peruvian superhero?

          • Jonathan Soens

            That half-llama idea might sound bad. But it’s only a stone’s throw away from Jim Breuer’s Goat Boy character. And I’m not gonna lie: if they made a Goat Boy movie, I’d have watched it.

          • Midnight Luck

            In the Book world it would be an Editor.
            In Screenwriting, it would be Robert McKee.

            There’s always room for another.

          • Linkthis83

            I own McKee’s book and at times it’s great and other times I’m like “what?” He definitely emphasizes what I want from my own stories and the stories of others = heart. And I honestly wouldn’t say that these stories are missing it, but maybe lacking in their ability to convey it. I think that’s what I’d be good at.

            It’s still too early in my development to know yet. All in due time.

          • Awescillot

            I’m actually curious, what sort of script are you working on currently?

          • drifting in space

            It was a dramedy but after a few brilliant members from this community gave it a read I’ve started a page 1 rewrite. It is a pure drama centered around alcoholism/family. I took a lot longer planning this draft out and I think it’s hitting a lot deeper.

            Irony is that I thought my real life humor would translate to the page but it didn’t. I’m much more comfortable writing drama/thriller. My next couple projects on the back burner are thriller/horror if I don’t start working on my pilot idea first.

          • Awescillot

            Okay, very interesting. I’d love to give it a read sometime, when it’s ready for showing.

    • IgorWasTaken

      charliesb wrote: “3. Your dialogue sucks. Ya I said it. Try reading it out loud. It’s clunky, awkward and it’s obvious. A strung out addict is not going to say ‘We’re nothing but income to you’. She’s going to say ‘Go fuck yourself!’

      Or, she might say, “We’re nothing but income to you.”

      • Linkthis83

        Or, she might say. “Go fuck y…..” Couldn’t resist the obvious next reply ;)

        • IgorWasTaken

          Oh, absolutely.

      • IgorWasTaken

        Gee. Two (so far) anonymous critics have down-voted my comment. I guess they think strung-out junkies can only say “fuck you.” Maybe they’ve never dealt with such people. Maybe they’ve never even seen Trainspotting.

        • charliesb

          Meh, don’t sweat it. I may not like the original line. But “Go fuck yourself” ain’t better. I just felt the line should have been rawer, considering the situation.

    • Rob B.

      You get further than me. I still can’t past the loglines. I don’t like to read drama’s and horror scripts so 99% of the Amateur scripts get tossed aside already.

    • Midnight Luck

      I really feel your rant.

      #5 big time.

      While I understand people just starting out wanting to put it out there and get some free feedback, it is really frustrating when so much of the work we read feels like it is a first draft of a first ever script. It really needs to be meticulously combed over before ANYONE reads it.

      Maybe after 5 drafts you can have your other best friend read it, then when you think it is ready to go you have your Best Best friend read it (since you don’t want to lose them as a friend if they end up hating what they read, and then hating you for making them do it). THEN have MOM read it, since that is what she’s put on this Earth for right? Once all that has been done and you’ve rewritten it 5-10 more times and are SURE it is ready to go, then, well, then send it to an actual proofreader to catch mistakes (spelling, grammar, etc.). That last one might just be me. I like to have my work as free from grammatical and spelling mistakes as possible. If I don’t get the simple shit right, I feel like the whole thing is shit.

      But please, approach this like it is your ONE SHOT at Juliard or that Job you have to have. No one would just phone those things in, so why do so many people put their stuff out for everyone when it isn’t ready? Go to Triggerstreet and do that. (No don’t, please, make sure your stuff is ready over there also).

      You never know who is on any of these sites. Why not give your script the best chance of success and your name the best chance of being noticed or remembered?

      That’s how I approach it.
      Could just be my OCD, ADD, ADHD or PTSD coming out. Damn those acronyms.

      • charliesb

        “But please, approach this like it is your ONE SHOT at Juliard or that Job you have to have. No one would just phone those things in, so why do so many people put their stuff out for everyone when it isn’t ready? Go to Triggerstreet and do that. (No don’t, please, make sure your stuff is ready over there also).”

        ^THIS!!!

        If your comment was a person I would marry it and do right by it.

    • http://www.twitter.com/esporter Evan Porter

      As the writer of that horrendous line of dialogue, let me just ask…

      Who do you think you are?

      What do you expect to happen here? I’m sorry but there aren’t hundreds of Sorkins perusing amateur screenwriting blogs and submitting their work. We’re just a group of people working really fucking hard to get better. I don’t know how it got to be that I’m supposed to be grateful to someone for glancing at the first page of my script and then bluntly telling me why I suck. I really don’t see a place on this board for comments like this.

      Oh, and don’t feel bad for Carson. He’s vacationing in Paris thanks to talentless hacks like me who visit his site and pay for his notes.

      • charliesb

        I have to admit I was waiting for this. And while I’m not going to back down from hating that line of dialogue or having trouble getting past page 3 of your screenplay, I will say that obviously my criticism (of that line) could certainly have been a lot more constructive.

        If you read the rest of my post and what I’ve said since then, you’ll know that I have a strong opinion of what Amateur Friday offerings should entail. Obviously there are people here that will disagree with me, but I think the amount of “Worth the read” or “Impressive” grades received on AmFri in the last few months speaks for itself.

        No one is expecting a bunch of Sorkins (your measure, not mine) to show up week after week. But I expect that if you’re going to submit your work with the hopes of getting a great review and feedback, that you’ve read the articles, and the posted screenplays (amateur and professional) and you’ve taken those lessons to heart and applied them to your work.

        That’s who I am. The person who get’s pissed off when I can tell from the first few pages of a screenplay that the writer has not done that.

        I didn’t ask you to be grateful. You can take my advice or leave it, you can take it personally or you can look over your work and see if you can do better. I think you can, I think a lot of us can.

        I can’t believe that I have to say this, but if you can’t separate the criticism of one line of dialogue of your script from criticism of yourself, you might want to find another line of work.

        Oh, and ya, I think it’s safe to say that Carson’s vacation is well deserved.

        • Jonathan Soens

          Yikes. Seeing you be tough on the writers here, I’m not quite sure how it is that you had some nice things to say about my pilot submission a few weeks ago (particularly my dialogue).

          I agree with some of your frustration, though. There are definitely times when I have that instinct to get indignant about reading something that obviously isn’t ready yet.

          Still, I think it’s productive for amateurs to put work out there and invite the community to assess it. We probably need the cold light of day splashed on our writing to let us know just how far we have to go.

          I don’t suppose we do very many follow-ups around here, but I suspect everybody who got some tough love regarding their Amateur Friday script probably bounced back and wrote a much improved version on the next draft. That’s what it’s about sometimes. Either your stuff’s ready or it’s not. If it’s not, you need to be made aware that it’s not. Sometimes, that’s also what it’s about.

          As a reader of the site, I don’t mind when the Amateur Friday picks aren’t quite ready for the spotlight. I probably learn more about writing by examining a script that isn’t there yet.

          • Alexander_B

            “I don’t suppose we do very many follow-ups around here, but I suspect everybody who got some tough love regarding their Amateur Friday script probably bounced back and wrote a much improved version on the next draft.”

            Fuckin’ A.

          • MaliboJackk

            Some disappeared.
            Some don’t listen.
            And some need to be told to move on, write another script.

            Good to know it’s working for others.

          • charliesb

            That’s because you really do write dialogue well.

            And while I’m still frustrated, I am feeling a little less belligerent, and I do hope you’re right about the writers “bouncing back”. But we’ve all seen some successes here. Writers going from obscurity to getting repped and getting sales. I just want everyone (myself included) to put their absolute best work forward.

          • ElectricDreamer

            “I don’t suppose we do very many follow-ups around here, but I suspect everybody who got some tough love regarding their Amateur Friday script probably bounced back and wrote a much improved version on the next draft.”

            I know for a fact that two AF “[x]Wasn’t for Me’s” bounced back…
            And went on to get optioned by prodcos this year.

        • http://www.twitter.com/esporter Evan Porter

          Charlie, it’s not even that I disagree with your points. And really, this isn’t about my script. I just think the last thing aspiring writers need is another angry, belittling lecture. That’s all. I believe you have the best intentions, but this game is harsh enough without getting drilled and accused of half assing it in what’s supposed to be a supportive place.

          • charliesb

            You know what? You’re right. And that’s why I labeled it a rant at the end. My mistake was calling out your specific line to make my point about dialogue. That was rude and a bit childish and I apologize. I still stand behind what I wrote, but I don’t think I needed to point any specific fingers to make my point. (I could probably have done without the word suck as well but I think editing it would be a copout ).

            You’re right this isn’t about you or your specific script. This is about my opinion of the caliber of work that is being submitted to AMfri. And I while I do think that we all need an angry lecture once in a while to make us take a harder look at our work. That lecture should never be belittling. I want to be supportive, I want to give helpful advice and one day receive some as well. But when I get frustrated… well we’ve seen what happens.

            If most of the people on this site feel that AMFri is working as is, and is a great place to read, give feedback and grow as screenwriters, then I guess that’s all that matters. My wants are irrelevant as this is not my site.

            Good luck.

          • http://www.twitter.com/esporter Evan Porter

            No hard feelings. Like I said, I don’t think you’re wrong in your views, per se. I believe people should take the AmFri opportunity seriously, and I’d hope to see scripts that have gone through rigorous editing and rewriting so we know we’re getting people’s best efforts.

            Good luck to you as well.

      • JakeBarnes12

        The question, Evan, is if after posting your script on SS you understand why this is a bad line of dialogue.

        It’s a bad line because it clearly reflects more a message the writer wants to impart (on the nose) and less what your character would say. It shows the writer isn’t working from the inside out, probably THE fundamental strategy needed to write good dialogue.

        This is the kind of dialogue we all write. Hopefully over time we write less of it, but I think we’re always going to slip and do it. Sometimes experienced writers use it as a placeholder as they power through a scene, knowing they’ll return and insert a line truer to their character.

        It’s not helpful for someone to tell you your line sucks. It is helpful for someone to tell you why your line sucks and to point to techniques that will help you create more believable dialogue.

        That’s how we all learn.

        • Citizen M

          The line is from Crossfire. Spoken by a 40-yr old female addict as she cradles the body of her BF killed by a dose of bad drugs. I didn’t have a problem with it. It suggests the addict is an educated person fallen on hard times and wondering how her life turned out so bad.

          “Fuck you.” would be the cliched line.

          • JakeBarnes12

            I agree that “f*ck you” would be a lazy choice. However that’s not the only choice the writer had.

            It rings as false that a drug addict whose BF has just died would say this line which perfectly analyzes the situation.

            Those who have just lost someone close to them tend to have an emotional response rather than an analytical one. If we extend that to a drug addict then it would hold even more true.

            A character saying a line which accurately sums up the scene or makes the writer’s point often comes across as “on the nose.”

            Less experienced writers tend to rely on dialogue in this way. If you look at more skillful writers, you’ll see that they have the EVENTS OF THE SCENE carry the message, freeing them to allow the dialogue and the characters’ understanding of what is happening to work against that.

            This is the layer of meaning that actors love to play known as subtext.

            It’s harder to do than simply have a character sum up a situation, but it makes for much richer and more compelling scenes.

          • http://www.twitter.com/esporter Evan Porter

            I appreciate the back and forth on this, guys. But I wish I had come across a little less defensive about my script because that’s not really my issue. Believe me, I am no stranger to criticism and feedback, and j have never responded negatively to a thoughtful (or otherwise) critique of my work.

            What ruffles my feathers is the insinuation that because I wrote a line of dialogue that didn’t land with a particular reader, that means I didn’t try and that I’m viewing this experience as some sort of get rich quick scheme or something.

            Grendl made this same rant last week (although I think Carson deleted it). I just think its really selfish to get pissed off at other peoples efforts based on a snap judgment.

          • JakeBarnes12

            Hey, Evan,

            Yeah, I absolutely agree with you. I think most of us here are trying our best and we all genuinely want to get better at something that’s really difficult to do. The only way we can do that is keep practicing, which involves making lots of mistakes and hopefully learning from them over time.

            I don’t mind if someone puts something bluntly (I’ve been told over the years by writing partners and UCLA professors things like my main character’s boring, I had weak plotting, etc., etc., all of which were true and hopefully helped me to produce better scripts) but it’s certainly insulting to be told you’re not trying.

            I think maybe if someone submits a script that’s riddled with spelling errors or grammatical problems then you wonder how serious that person is, but otherwise I think it’s best to assume the writer is working in good faith but is at a point where they can’t yet see certain problems or know certain techniques. Only way for us to learn is to keep going.

            Have a productive weekend!

        • Jonathan Soens

          The question of whether dialogue is bad dialogue by itself isn’t always easy.

          Is it a clunky line? Maybe. I’d have worded it differently, myself. But it might just be how that character talks. Just because somebody is an addict doesn’t mean they were never educated, or that they aren’t capable of (or prone to) philosophizing by saying things like that.

          Personally, my problem wasn’t that the line sounded improbable because I’ve never heard addicts talk like that. If anything, my problem is that I’ve actually heard too much of addicts talking like that. Too much ranting and philosophizing about the “business” of drugs. About consumers and product and profit and income and price versus cost, etc.

          If a guy shows up to buy some drugs, he might rant a bit about the decay caused by the drug culture because he sees what it’s doing to him and everyone around him,and he needs to talk tough about it for a minute before caving in and buying more poison to shoot into himself. He might just be trying to sound deep or smart, so people don’t think he’s just another “fiend” who mindlessly pursues this substance. Or maybe he’s already high and he just gets talkative like that when he’s high.

          • JakeBarnes12

            What you say is true, Jon. Context, however, is everything.

            This line is said after the woman addict’s boyfriend has died from a drug overdose and it’s addressed to the dealer.

            Within that context, the line doesn’t read as coming from the character but as the writer wanting to making a point and trying to use a character to just say it.

            To be clear, having ANYONE say the line within the scene would be a poor choice because it’s so on-the-nose. The fact the writer chose a character who’s just lost her boyfriend simply heightens the incongruity.

            Much more powerful if the point we want to make in a scene is dramatized as opposed to spoken by a character, the old show don’t tell thing.

          • Linkthis83

            I’m really glad you brought context up, Jake. That was going to be my response. Plus, it’s the first words this character speaks. We have no frame of reference for this character or the situation.

            Had this been further into the story and we had plenty of other scenes with this character, then it probably works just fine. It might even be the thing that needs to be said.

          • Jonathan Soens

            I could still imagine a context where the line makes sense, though.

            If it were my line and I were in love with it and I wanted the character to say it in that scene, I’d do some grunt-work in other scenes to set up or justify the line. (Although an argument can be made that it’s a counterproductive line if I’m having to re-work other scenes just to justify this one line.)

            Maybe it’s something she’s felt all along, but never said anything to the dealer because she was too afraid. Maybe it’s something her boyfriend felt all along, and they had talked about it together, so the sentiment has a connection to her boyfriend and it isn’t just a spur-of-the-moment poignant realization that perfectly sums up the situation. Maybe she only said it after boyfriend died because she was trying to lash out with the most vicious thing she could think of to say to the dealer (and the joke would be on her, because of course the dealer only looks at the users as being symbols of his cash-flow, so those words would probably just amuse him anyway, not hurt him — he’d probably just agree with the accusation).

            I dunno.

            I was just making the point that I don’t like saying dialogue sucks because you throw out one line that you don’t think a person like the speaker would say. Sometimes, it’s interesting writing to have lines coming out of a people you wouldn’t have expected to say the line. You have to create a context for it, though.

        • sweetvita

          “It’s not helpful for someone to tell you your line sucks. It is helpful for someone to tell you why your line sucks and to point to techniques that will help you create more believable dialogue.”

          Now I know you really are one of the good guys ;)

          A few days ago, The Writers Store offered a webinar with Corey Mandell called “How Professional Writers Structure Their Scripts”. He said writers who write from the outside in tend to have thin characters because they approach their writing conceptually – from their head. And conversely, writers who work from the inside out have strong characters that drive authentic dialogue but their weakness is typically story form (structure). So instead of getting bummed as what approach we use to tell our stories, he said we need to attack our weaknesses and turn them into strengths (he gave insights on how to do this). He calls it creative integration.

    • Alexander_B

      Get off your high horse, will ya?

      I did the whole circuit — friends, relatives, screenwriter pals, interest in my loglines, professional feedback… But it wasn’t until a script of mine was destroyed on an Amateur Friday I learned that my problem was the lack of clarity in my action lines. Everybody complimented my dialogue and gave advice on improving structure and shit, but nobody bothered to mention that little fact.

      I’m still a good ways from being an actual screenwriter (still need to learn all this emotion crap), but after some very hard work I can write clear, crisp, precise action that doesn’t raise any questions from any reader — amateur or professional.

      It’s like Carson taught me to walk in his review. Never would of happened if not for AF.

      So screw you and your elitism — Amateur Fridays are for writers, not for readers.

    • http://www.andrew.fm/ Andrew Stoeckley

      On the topic of dialog, while I agree, I recently read a spec that sold about a hunt for a cop-killer in some Detroit-like downtrodden hell of a city. So, it sold, the writer made money and I thought “there aren’t many specs that sell, let’s see how good it must have been.” I was astonished by just how awful, truly horrendous, the dialog was. Absolutely one line of cliches after another. Every stereotypical phrase from decades of tv shows and movies found its way into this script. And the plot was weak too. I’ll tell you something, it’s great to get meaningful criticism from this site and other sources, but I think very often the things that are making their way into producers’ stockings are not necessarily the best scripts you’d ever read. Dialog can be fixed later in another pass and sometimes it takes a fresh writer to make dialog ring on an existing script. In the end, I think all that matters more than anything is the story concept itself, and a close second to that is how well it is plotted out. Just about everything else seems forgivable. I think producers are looking at scripts in a different way than the typical academic approach and it largely just comes down to each individual producer’s tastes and needs. Granted, this is a site for writers, not necessarily for producers, but it helps to have some perspective.

  • Linkthis83

    This comment surprises me, grendl. You’ve never seemed like the type to have to validate your work. Methinks this is humanizing you a bit.

  • klmn

    My review was of the sketch, not your script. I’m going to recuse myself from commenting on your script.

    Good luck with it.

  • Steve

    Didn’t get you representation. Didn’t get you a sale. Didn’t get you an assignment.

    Get over it.

  • Alexander_B

    The problem is, “Smoking Aces” took place in a single location (the hotel/casino thing). Can you imagine those 100+ assassins chasing something all over across the U.S.? Joe would go bananas.

    • Linkthis83

      It would be like the Cannonball Run of assassins. I’d probably watch that.

      • Alexander_B

        Team up for “Smokin’ Aces Part 4″?

  • Alexander_B

    Perry: Go. Sleep badly. Any questions, hesitate to call.

    Harry: Bad.

    Perry: Excuse me?

    Harry: Sleep bad. Otherwise it makes it seem like the mechanism that allows you to sleep…

    Perry: What, fuckhead? Who taught you grammar? Badly’s an adverb. Get out. Vanish.

  • carsonreeves1

    No way. Pulp would’ve done really well. The scene structure in that script is amazing. Resevoir not so well. Natural Born Killers probably not so well either.

    • klmn

      Post your half llama man script.

    • Alexander_B

      Tarantino would probably rage-quit screenwriting after your NBK review, or turn all Grendl on us.

      • MaliboJackk

        Did you use Grendl and Tarantino in the same sentence??

        • Alexander_B

          I did put a comma between them!

        • klmn

          As did you.

          • MaliboJackk

            Corrected it.

  • Marija ZombiGirl

    Disqus tip : Just click on it again and it disappears ;-)

  • Citizen M

    The infiltration goes bad, however, and…

    I don’t have a problem with ‘bad’ here. It’s using ‘bad’ in the sense of food going bad. But ‘badly’ would also work.

  • http://www.andrew.fm/ Andrew Stoeckley

    this writer has great skill at putting words on a page. very talented. everything else can be fixed.

  • sweetvita

    True that. It’s the characters’ emotional arcs and what they have to trudge through to become whole (or not) that hang with us long after the car chases and explosions are gone. I love characters that leave their imprint on the recesses of my soul.