amateur offerings weekend

Read this week’s Amateur Offerings collection and offer constructive criticism below, plus your vote for which script should be reviewed on Friday!

TITLE: ADAM
GENRE: Sci-fi Thriller
LOGLINE: A bio-mechanical man wakes with one memory: he must bring the woman he loves back to life. But his creator is on the hunt to catch his experiment, before the secret gets out.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ: A biologically engineered superhuman whose mind is half computer on the run through a post World War Three metropolis. Chased by cannibals, a cyborg with an identity crisis, a mysterious thin man, and corporate kingmakers. Helped only by an apathetic news anchor with hedonistic tendencies. — This is a story about the inevitable melding of man and machine, the digital world and the real one. The future of the internet and the human body. It questions how we will maintain our human identity in the face of exponential technological growth. — It’s Bourne+Blade Runner+Frankenstein with a hint of Hitchcock style thriller, Cronenberg and the Matrix.

TITLE: Haves and Have Nots
GENRE: Noir
LOGLINE: An investigative reporter returns home, delving into Las Vegas’ underground of addicts, prostitutes, and degenerates, to find her missing brother.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ: Carson writes that a lot of great specs are derived from the concept of taking a “seen-it-before” story and flipping it on its head. I took a noir, threw in a female protagonist and set it in Las Vegas. I integrated all of the set pieces of Vegas (casinos, strip clubs, pimps, vast expanses of emptiness) with the hallmarks of the noir genre: (tight, stylized dialogue, grittiness, femme fatales, a troubled hero with a cross to bear). I hope I did well.

TITLE: Tuesday’s Gone
GENRE: Dark comedy, meta-horror.
LOGLINE: Tuesday Wilson is a new mom. She spends her free time on Facebook. Uploading pics and bragging about her baby. When an ornery high school girl and her friends leave bad comments about said baby…she tracks each commenter down and takes their lives in funny, horrific ways. All the while a famous Hollywood actor and an old broken Detective are hot on her trail.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ: My name is Derek Williams. I had a pretty fucked up script called Goodbye Gene reviewed on AF early last year.

I’m now submitting my next script. It’s called Tuesday’s Gone. Nobody gets raped. No child molesters pop up. In the AF review Carson said, “the next thing this guy writes is probably going to get made. That’s what my gut is telling me.” Well…here it is. Let’s see how well you know your gut, sir.

This is a satire about “Facebook Moms.” Come on. We all know an annoying Facebook Mom.

TITLE: Big Bear
GENRE: Action/Thriller
LOGLINE: Two married elite special operatives infiltrate a southern California terrorist cell in order to thwart a major terrorist attack and ultimately take out Bin Laden’s successor– a man who is under increasing pressure to carry out a fresh act of headline-grabbing terror to cement himself as the new #1.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ: This script placed in the top 15% of the 2012 Nicholl Fellowship Screenwriting contest. (Somewhere between 720-1080 out of 7200 scripts!!) Considering that this script is far from a Nicholl-style script, I believe it fared pretty well. And since then, it’s been optioned, and undergone a few rewrites. BIG BEAR is an independent action movie. I personally wanted to focus more on the struggle between two married special operatives on the mission of their lives than blowing shit up. Bottom line: It’s different. I’d love to put the script out to your readers to see if it can be upgraded further.

~*COMEBACK SCRIPT*~
TITLE: THE HARVESTER
GENRE: Horror
LOGLINE: Murdered to advance the construction of an exclusive golf resort, a mountain man is resurrected by Death himself to take revenge as an undead killing machine.
WHY YOU SHOULD READ: I’m a lifelong horror fanatic and very much a product of the VHS generation. This is my sincere attempt at horror the way I lovingly remember it; gruesome and gory, but also imaginative, cinematic and, most importantly, FUN! THE HARVESTER is a high-concept, blood-soaked blast of old-school carnage with an ending so wild and explosive that it needs to be read to be believed. Hope you enjoy!

  • Ryan Sasinowski

    Wow. All of these sound REALLY good! Can’t wait to dive in.

  • Nick Morris

    WOOHOO!!! The Harvester lives!
    Okay.
    Large glass of red wine – check.
    Metallica – check.
    AOW…annnnd, check!

    • Linkthis83

      Congrats, Nick. And good luck.

      Is this a new draft btw?

      • Nick Morris

        Yeah. It’s seen lots of changes since the last AOW. Thanks, man! m/,

        • astranger2

          Congrats! Only read the first 10 last time and found the opening enticing… been busy, but looking forward to reading more… ; v )

          • Nick Morris

            Thanks! Hope you do and can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

  • Malibo Jackk

    The votes are in.
    So far they heavily favor The Harvester 2.0.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks! It looks like a really strong batch of scripts.

  • Randy Williams

    I was under the impression AOW would take another skip. Nice to see some writers honored this week. Congrats for making it past the slew of loglines that are your competition! The comeback kid, Nick Morris is back. I really like his writing. Even more he seems like someone anyone could work with. So level headed, so polite and full of insight. I’m more than happy to push him to the front of the line any time but first I need to see whom he’s come to the party with.

    I’ve started with “Tuesday’s Gone”

    You know, if you want to write fucked up, write fucked up. If you almost apologize for writing fucked up in the last script you shared, then why are you writing fucked up in this one? Not bashing it, the fucked up part was the best of the 30 pages I read. All the detective and gangsta stuff, the porno set. A subplot, however, but it really shined. The main plot, however, I felt was lacking. The amusement level was really low, I really tried. Even with the fast and breezy writing style which was always a pleasure to eyeball, I couldn’t find her or the humor in her. Maybe my problem was I was dropped into her story with her already having a history of murders. She’s already a cold blooded killer when I meet her.
    I want her to be a mom first.

    • Nick Morris

      Wow. Thanks for the kind words and support, Randy. If I’m polite, it’s because I’m Canadian. It’s the law.

      • klmn

        I guess there’s an exemption for hockey players?

        • gazrow

          LOL.

        • Nick Morris

          Yes. And Rob Ford, haha.

  • Randy Williams

    HAVE AND HAVE NOTS

    Read to page 36. The writing here is as seductive as the opening visuals. I want to keep reading. I can’t see how anyone would not.
    The early family scenes, gosh, how you’ve captured this family’s pain. So palpable. I was almost in tears.

    I, however, felt, especially with such a leisurely pace, and such character work, the lack of action, that it felt like a well produced, top drawer written, hour long TV drama instead of a feature. I’m not qualified to really say that, but just my reaction.

    Never understood how a child’s breakfast cereal is supposed to endear us to an adult character so at that first mention, (although it’s used to better effect later) I was taken out of the read at that point. Also, didn’t like that she insulted the “ogre” at the massage place in that fashion. Thought better of her to do that,maybe she can do it in a more “thinking man’s” way where the punchline comes with some thought.
    He didn’t deserve it, especially since he utters what I thought a great line, “You come here again, I’ll be the last person to know how pretty you were”

  • Linkthis83

    (still typing up other reviews)

    Congrats to these writers for making it into AOW. This was a good set of scripts. I
    didn’t have to stop and note a lot like I usually do.

    My vote: THE HARVESTER

    P25 = stopped

    Summary: It’s no secret I’ve been a supporter of this script since it first appeared in AOW. I think I’m more fan of the concept than I am the actual story. However, I still feel it was the best combination of concept + story (for me and my interests).

    Nick, I dig your writing. I’m into some of these visuals you create and I feel like there’s “fun” in these pages. I like scripts with some fun (TUESDAY’S GONE is fun too). I still stand by the notes I gave you the your first AOW about Death’s entrance. I think it’s MORE fun to have Maria alive, him kill her, throw her against the truck, and then reveal him when he pulls David out of the truck. Or even kill her by throwing her against the truck. I just think there can be a few more details added here to heighten/enhance this opening moment.

    The next thing I think is lacking in these opening pages are the “relationships” and “emotional responses.” I think you need to allow David to dwell for a moment or two longer regarding Maria’s death before Death steps in. Also, David’s lack of a reaction when Bergman acknowledges that he killed them is a missed opportunity. Unless the fact that he’s dead has removed his emotional attachments to Maria. But to me, it should still be extremely fresh in his mind/heart because we transitioned from his death to the meeting with Bergman. I think David she be a little more emotional.

    This is also true of Sasha. I’m assuming she’s traveled a long way to get to here.
    Something internally, or externally (or both), have pushed her here. If you aren’t going to tell us her motivation, we need to see it. I think she’s too middle of the road.

    I got to 25 pages and I don’t know any details really of who is doing what or why. This is something I constantly complain about regarding scripts. To be fair, I guess I could say that I know Jay is coming for a summer job. But basically, after 25 pages, what is it I’m
    looking forward to? I don’t know why Sasha is here or why she is continuing to push on after finding out about their death (which is also unclear because Dale states that he didn’t know what happened to David and then says he heard a story about them going over the cliff and Sasha says “they died here” or something – as of right now, I’d say
    Dale was driving the snowplow :) I don’t know what Bergman really wants or why David didn’t ask for more details or how long he has to do this or what his goal is or what. And this is when I suggest writers LIE. And what I mean is this: put something into the story that is relevant and true for your characters at that time. Depending on their motivations. Like
    a goal, even if it’s a fake one. It’s no secret that Sasha is looking for her parents, but when we learn that they are dead, she keeps going. Why? And why doesn’t Jay ask? Jay should ask and Sasha could say simply “I need to know what happened. It’s why I’m
    here.” That could be true, total bullshit or a combo of both. But now I’m with her. I have details.

    Bottom line though, I’m difficult on this because of what I want from it. It has so much potential. Ask Gazrow about what I did to OFFLINE when I first read it. I love his concept. I gave him 15 pages of notes. I ripped into it. Lol.

    Truth is, it could be good enough as it is, but a script can always be more and that’s how I
    look at them in AOW. Not to just say “oh yeah, this is good.” It’s to see if I my perspective can help it in any way.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks for the vote. Man. I hope you read on…

      • Linkthis83

        Was I right about Dale?

        • Nick Morris

          No.

          • Linkthis83

            Oh well, in that case, you’ve missed a story opportunity and I must do some deleting…;)

      • Linkthis83

        (this is just one amateur opinion/assessment. Only you know what is right for your story. I don’t believe in one-off declarations about what is right for another person’s scripts/stories. Conversations are what help me. You don’t have to respond to any of this. Also, I don’t mind when writer’s defend their work. It helps me understand their intentions and what I missed as a reader.)

        Read to page 64 and then skimmed to the end.

        Have you thought about calling this FAIRWAY THE 13TH? Just kidding :)

        Whose story is this? I can’t quite tell if it’s David’s or Sasha’s. Feels like Sasha’s. If so, I think she’s a little too gray as she is written right now. Sixty four pages into your story and I don’t know what I’m rooting for because nobody has stated a clear want/goal. Sasha says she’s trying to find her parents a couple different times, but she’s not very determined. It’s intermittent.

        At her core, she seems like she’s stronger than you’re showing her. And true, that might be part of her real character, but we identify with her as the emotion spine of the story. So if she shows us nothing, then we feel nothing.

        We got to see her lash out at Mike, and we all know how good it feels when we think we’ve put a Mike in his place, but it was just a flash. Just a moment. Have be a little more bold right from the beginning. She’s arrived in Prosperity Falls with no plans other than “find my parents.” No place to stay, no place to go, etc. So I take that to mean she’s uber focused, but then she just kind of gets info that’s only a rumor and then heads off to the road that no longer exists because her parents had a cabin there.

        Instead, have her being proactive in the diner. Have her going patron to patron maybe. Then we she gets the news, she sinks into a booth and gets a little emotional. This is when Jay makes his move. When they get to know each other, Sasha uses Jay a little bit because he’s going to work where she thinks more answers lie.

        The other thing that makes her gray, is I don’t know WHY she’s even on this journey to begin with. If they were alive, would she have been excited? What spurred her on this journey to begin with? Is that revealed in the pages and I missed it? Character motivations are essential.

        Also, I feel Bergman would emotionally manipulate David. He wants him to become the Harvester and take out all these people at this golf resort. I would think killing Vargas would be more motivation for David to accept this offer as opposed to being tortured. And that is what i think you make Bergman’s proposal in the beginning. He sells David on the revenge. This is clear. Then we know why David is doing what he is doing. Then we will learn later what Death’s motives really are. This is what I mean about telling the audience a LIE to get us invested.

        I now understand why you wanted me to read further or why you possibly disagree with my suggestions for the scene with David and Maria. Death can’t kill people. Well, didn’t he kill David? David wasn’t dead and he just tossed him into the air. Also, if you want to remain true to that, it still works. I’d prefer Death to be a bit of a mystery before he gets to David. And you can still have Maria alive, and Death kneeling at her side and her final breath gives out. That’s when he picks her up and throws her against the truck. It stays true to the rule without us knowing who he is.

        Before I even got to page 64, I was thinking…what are we building towards? Because it didn’t feel like we were building. I think the cause of that is the lack of declared goals and stakes by the primary characters.

        I love the actual being of the Harvester. Very cool. Extremely cinematic. Well done. Like I mentioned in my review, I love this concept, it’s just the story doesn’t get me INVESTED. and I don’t mean invested like we should cry when Sasha cries. I simply mean caring about where all of this is headed.

        • Nick Morris

          FAIRWAY THE 13th, LOL!

          Dude. I really appreciate the time you’ve put into this.

          Establishing Sasha’s motivation was tricky. Her true goal is
          to find love and/or something to be a part of – a family. She’s lost and isn’t really sure how to go about picking up the pieces of her life. In the wake of a failed suicide attempt, she sets off to try and find her biological parents. Instead, she finds a golf course where their home should be.

          Having reached the end of her road, literally and figuratively, her only option is to try to prove and expose what she believes
          happened to them. But she starts to realize that Jay and indeed the resort itself could possibly provide the companionship that she’s so desperate for. She’s conflicted. Whenever she thinks she’s found a path to follow or a goal to pursue, something outside of her ability to control complicates things. So, I wanted to build her character around that inner turmoil. Perhaps I’ve failed to express that clearly in the writing, but I’ll definitely be looking closely at this going forward.

          I think of Sasha and David as dual protagonists, one living
          and the other not so much. David is lost and confused too, with nothing to guide him but grief, whatever Bergman tells him and an instinctive need to kill. When Death first appears, both David and Maria exist within the space between life and death. Vargas is responsible for having them killed. Like everyone that dies, Death is only there to collect their souls for delivery to the powers that be – to usher them into the afterlife. Only he chooses to do something else with David’s. I’ve tried to make Sasha and David’s journeys run parallel until their paths inevitably converge.

          Thanks again for your insights, Link! You’ve given me lots
          to think about.

          • Linkthis83

            Thanks for this. I didn’t get some of this from these pages. And I will totally own that it could be me.

            Is her having a failed suicide attempt in here?

            When I say I want to know what the characters want, or what their goals are, I simply mean that the character should give us some idea.
            Little details that could help…if the suicide attempt was really recent, maybe she still has the hospital bracelet on her arm. Although, it also depends on how she tried to create suicide – maybe have some sort of visual indicator of this attempt.

            I do like, and understand, what your intentions are with the summary above. Keep after it, man. Hopefully I don’t know what I’m talking about and you get the AF and all kinds of phone calls!!

          • Nick Morris

            “Is her having a failed suicide attempt in here?”

            Bergman reveals this to David on page 33. She never brings it up herself.

            “Hopefully I don’t know what I’m talking about and you get the AF and all kinds of phone calls!!”

            I’ve been reading SS long enough to know that you know your shit, dude. But I hope you’re right about the AF and the phone calls!

          • Linkthis83

            Page 33 = yep. It’s there. and I even remember the Goliath connection with the event that’s taking place. My apologies.

            I think I know some shit. Still lots to learn ;)

            I don’t know for certain, but it’s possible I glossed over the suicide attempt because I wasn’t connected to these characters. I can’t say that is a fact, but only a possibility.

            Most of the time I’m focused on “emotional weight/impact.” You’ve done the work here with Sasha’s depth, I just think it needs to be a little more prevalent.

            I’m usually better/clearer at this by having real conversations. If at some point down the road, you want to discuss this stuff, just let me know. Skype or cell. I’ve done that with others (and one was also Canadian).

            linkthis83 at yahoo dot com

          • Nick Morris

            Sounds great! Maybe we can talk scripts over beers at a horror film fest some day…

        • Bifferspice

          great comments as always, Link.

          i disagree about liking her lashing out at Mike. it felt a little clunky and unrealistic to me, just didn’t hang right. he wouldn’t be put in his place by some pseudo-psychology. he’d tell her to fuck off, straight off the bat.

          I love your paragraph about revenge. i think this is what this script is missing for me. he gets all these powers, and the logline sets it up as a revenge thing, and he just doesn’t go for revenge at all. he’s too busy killing innocent people. he should be all about getting to vargas, and death should be tripping him up at every turn, making him do things he doesn’t want to do, moving the goalposts.

          the final thing should be he gets to vargas, his moment of triumph, and then works out (or is told) that killing vargas helps death with all of his dastardly plans of putting innocent people into the pits of hell. what the hell does he do then? it would be the first time the harvester has been ‘tested’, and it gets right to the heart of revenge. what price are you willing to pay?

          • Linkthis83

            Hey Biffer, thanks.

            I highlighted her lashing out at Mike as a thing that felt like this is who she really is, but we haven’t seen it until now, and it’s only for a moment. So I agree with you. That’s why I said if this is who she is at her core, we need to see this core driving her right from the beginning.

            Also, I threw in the joke about putting Mikes in their place because…my name’s Mike. And I tend to get lashed at on here. Lol.

            Agreed on the rest. It feels like these characters aren’t being driven by what’s actually driving them. If that makes sense. So their motivations make absolute sense, but it feels like those motivations are actually muted in the script. That should be the fun of David’s revenge. The “emotional weight” portrayed in character actions.

          • Nick Morris

            “the final thing should be he gets to vargas, his moment of triumph, and then works out (or is told) that killing vargas helps death with all of his dastardly plans of putting innocent people into the pits of hell.”

            Bergman threatens David with hell in an effort to nail down his compliance. But it isn’t Bergman’s intention to damn innocent people to hell. Hell is not his jurisdiction. He doesn’t judge. He’s a numbers man. He explains on pg 67 that he needs human energy/souls to save humanity. Of course, we don’t know if he’s lying or not.

            Now, whether this revelation is appropriate, effective or necessary to the script is something that I’ve gone back and forth on for a while. How much info is too much here?

          • Bifferspice

            I fully understand it from Bergman’s POV but its David I don’t get. He doesn’t seem to go after Vargas and co. He’s as aimless as a tornado which isn’t the premise I remember being promised. Im on my phone so can’t check the wording but I wanted to see a guy get docked on, get superpowers from hell then get all creative death merchant on those who killed him. We don’t ever find out who was driving the truck and vargas’s death is pretty much an irrelevance. As is Sasha’s subplot. I’d have liked more between them once they realise who the other is. Anyqway as I say, Bergmans intentions are plenty mapped out. But his not caring who the dead people are doesn’t explain why David doesn’t target those who killed him in the first place. So he needn’t be a wronged guy at all. Could just be a passing harvester demon guy with nothing personal invested in either Vargas or Sasha.

          • Nick Morris

            Sorry, Biff. I just wanted to clarify that point re: “death with all of his dastardly plans of putting innocent people into the pits of hell.”

  • Randy Williams

    ADAM

    Read to page 20.

    This is rich stuff. If the rest of it proves to be as captivating, I wish it was a mini-series.

    I laughed out loud on page 3, was presented with a literal “mystery box” Not one, but two actually very soon afterwards. How quickly I accepted this world and everything in it! Page 8, there’s a real goal, we know where we’re going.

    How endeared I was to Bob! I wanted those scenes with him and the bionic man to go on and on and on. Even SPOILER…….when Bob was out to get him, with the rat trap, it still panged me that Bob was killed.

    What I read included a continuing visual “gimmick” which I thought would be effective and memorable on screen, that whole word association visuals from the bionic man.

    I’ll be honest though, once they left Bob’s place and entered the urban area, It dropped in captivating quotient. Then that nun and her cross and God. I know you want to establish some philosophical underpinnings, this is ADAM, but it seemed blatant and unarguable. I yearned for the complicated humanity of a Bob.

  • Randy Williams

    BIG BEAR

    I didn’t read the logline and when I started reading, I was thinking this was something else. I really liked the writing, put me wherever I was supposed to be. I was feeling a story about two military specialists staking out a middle eastern couple in an odd place, and that was all. How it would twist and turn, be full of tension and make me think and I’d be surprised more than once and totally floored at the end.
    SPOILER. In what could have been a tension filled scene (what I wanted) at a dinner table turned into for me a surprisingly quick cartoonish murder of at least one seemingly innocent person. It was later explained that she would have “slit your throat” so I killed her? (again, not what I wanted) The operation was bigger than I thought. I couldn’t read any more after that, it wasn’t what I wanted. Can’t say more beyond that. Sometimes expectations ruin everything, not the writer’s problem.

  • Sebastian Cornet

    I started with “Adam” because it’s a sci-fi thriller and the logline made me think it’d be a thrilling ride.

    However, I read the first 10 pages and no more.

    What killed it for me was that those pages felt mostly like set-up. The stage is being set for something i guess..but then the writing it’s description and scenery with no conflict, slowing the pace to a crawl.

    Of course we need set-up, but we need to be entertained at the same time, and watching a guy talking to a dog skull and operating futuristic machinery is not my idea of engaging action. It’s not even much of a hook.

    There’s some motion here, but not much emotion.

  • bl2d

    I never comment on here and I mean never but there’s something here — While the visuals are quite hard to put together — The story takes off quick. The more impressive thing and the reason why I’m breaking my silence is the script has a sense of honest creativity. These ideas are influenced not fabricated. And while incredibly over detailed picking out these creative gems amidst the unnecessary will help it more than anything. The hardest part of writing and especially writing sci-fi is containment. These are new worlds that don’t apply to the rules and physics of our world and it’s all to easy to get caught up in this. Find your theme and I can’t stress that enough it’s the heart. You can make us accept the world you created with some fine tuning of course but now you’ve got to make us relate to what’s in it. It can suck sometimes but scene by scene line by line make it count and I’m not saying you haven’t tried but now ask WHY for ever word that you write.
    Good luck.

  • Randy Williams

    THE HARVESTER

    Read the first 30.

    The writer promises fun and he delivers. Like all good horror, it’s visceral, even the jokes. I laughed out loud at the horse shit joke. It came out sounding like James Earl Jones. (my laugh, that is).

    I think Linkthis83 has some good suggestions for improving it, but I imagine a director with some visual sense and a rapport with actors could nail this down tonight.

  • Randy Williams

    My vote

    Great writing from every script, this week, I thought. I laughed the other day reading a review of the new Transformer movie. The critic remarked, “the kindest thing I can say about the script is it’s incoherent” None of the scripts this week did I find confusing. All were easy, clear reads, full of interesting characters, interesting locations.

    VOTE GOES TO THE HARVESTER

  • Malibo Jackk

    Still too early to call the election
    but there does appear to be a heavy Canadian turnout.

    • Marija ZombiGirl

      Adding my vote to the count for THE HARVESTER :)

      Good luck with this, Nick !

      • Nick Morris

        Thank you, Marija!

  • GoIrish

    I made it to p. 22 of Tuesday’s Gone. Good title. I think the premise has potential. I found the writing style to be quick and easy to read. But I’ll echo what others have said – I think we need to see Tuesday transform into a killer. To see the moment where she cracks and has “gone” over the edge. I wasn’t really buying into the Walmart scene – so, I wouldn’t use that as her turning point; or if you do, I’d suggest revising it. The Mouthy Woman came in too over the top. I think a little more subtlety would be beneficial. Maybe have her start out nice (“oh, cute baby”) and asking seemingly innocent questions (looks at her watch, “wow, little later than I thought, huh?” or “What time do you have? 3. Yeah, that’s what I have, too”)/offering her own motherly advice (“my kids were all in bed by 8 – never had a problem” or cite some CDC study). With each question/statement, it becomes more apparent that the Mouthy Woman is actually questioning Tuesday’s parenting skills. You could have a final confrontation in the parking lot – maybe they parked next to each other and the Mouthy Woman questions whether the baby is properly buckled in. Anyway, just some suggestions – good luck.

    Suggested edits:
    p. 2 – “it’s hanger” – its
    p. 3 – “taught fetal position” -taut??
    p. 3 – “it’s full diameter” – its
    p. 3 – “24 hour WAL-MART” – 24-hour WALMART
    p. 4/5 – Sometimes you call her “MOUTHY WOMAN” and sometimes just “WOMAN”
    p. 7 – format: “six hundred and eighty-eight” (missing hyphen); a little further down you used “600 photos”
    p. 18 – “isles” – aisles

  • Robert M

    I started to read Have and Have nots as it seemed good from the logline. But as it turned out, I couldn’t get further than the first ten as it was to many things that I felt was to difficult to believe.

    First of was that the the police would work together with a journalist (our protagonist) to set up a politician.

    Second. She did it to get a scope as she is a reporter. Now, if that was so, she must have done some tremendous investigation beforehand and most likely be on the politicians radar. A story like this is, which would be huge, would probably involve not one, but a whole group of reporters doing different tasks during a long period of time. This leaves us to the

    Third, which is that her boss doesn’t even know what story she was working on, or what super story she had. That was just to unbelieveble. And obviously she’s the most amazing reporter there ever was, and her Boss won’t even listen to her and tells her to take time off.
    I’m sorry sorry to say I couldn’t go on. Maybe there is some explanation later on that causes this to make sense. I just didn’t see it.

    However, if there aren’t, I do believe there is some small changes you could do to have it make sense. Since i haven’t read more than the first ten, take it as you like, it might not fit with the rest of the story.

    My suggestion would be to change her to a freelancer/PI. Don’t have the police come in, but the politician find out she rigged the room with cameras or something similar. She tells him she has him on tape. You could have her tell him she was thinking of having him pay for her not going to the press. But as he was such a fucking sleezeball, she has changed her mind and will do so. (She’s human to us, witty yeah, but not perfect and she obviously has a heart that somehow works as a compass as she navigates in the murky waters she wants to be)

    She tries to sell the story, but somehow everything has turned, and the sleezeball has greased the papers she goes to, making it impossible. Instead the police is after her, arrests her. Have her released after the 24 hours only to come home and find her apartment been smashed. Her evidense is gone.

    Then you could have her leave for her old shitty reporter job in vegas to start over and your story continues.

    Hope you find this constructive and that you can use something of it to improve the script.
    Good luck with it.

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

    HARVESTER gets my vote

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks, Matty! You rock.

  • Citizen M

    My vote goes to BIG BEAR as the best of an indifferent bunch. The loglines were enticing but the scripts didn’t deliver.

    ADAM

    Read to page 21 when it took an unexpected religious direction. Some good descriptions of a future world but I see no reason to care about any of the characters. I don’t know who they are or what they want. There’s Bionic Man and Bionic Woman. It’s unclear just how human-like they are, so I don’t feel I can identify with them. A Desert Man who dies at the hands of subhuman cannibals, and a robotic servant called Gideon, so far the only “person” with a name. How Man and Woman came to be lying in a pile of trash is not explained, nor why a cyborg needs a doctor not a mechanic, nor why a machine should get relief from speed-reading the Bible. (I never read it — it’s too terrifying.) Given the logline and title it will probably turn out to be some sort of Edenic allegory. I don’t find it convincing and I’m not invested enough to read on.

    HAVES AND HAVE NOTS

    Read to page 16. I liked the intro to Marlowe but not much else. I was hoping for the promised Vegas sleaze but it’s taking too long to get going. We’re not even in Vegas yet. I had to look up “cut steakhouse”. I thought maybe it was like “dive bar”. Call it “upmarket steakhouse” for we non-Americans. The flashback from pages 10-14 is too long. It breaks the momentum of the story. Tell us Mr and Mrs Phillips and Jeff are Marlowe’s dad, mom, and bf. Don’t make us wonder who they are and look for clues. For a long flashback that has more than one scene I recommend the START FLASHBACK … END FLASHBACK format. On page 16 Mrs Phillips says “Ray had been arrested…” not Marlowe. I liked the logline but it’s not delivering. A vigorous pruning would help.

    TUESDAY’S GONE

    Read to page 27 and the dead wife. I feel no sympathy for the surviving spouse. I had high hopes from the logline and the script had its moments but went past quirky black comedy into events so implausible it lost me. I was hoping the first killing of the lady in the Volvo was a fantasy, but when it turned out to be real I started having reservations. Had the writer stuck with just Tuesday’s world and the high school kids I might still be on board, but mixing in Elijah Wood and the Crips and Bloods was too much. That a detective can’t identify the same handwriting on two different murder notes was ridiculous. It adds a farcical element that is tonally wrong. Others might enjoy this, but not me.

    BIG BEAR

    Read to page 31. Well written but seems to move a little slowly and has a ‘seen it before’ feel (channeling Clouseau and Cato in 1964). So far it has all been preparation for the main story which is only just starting. This should be page 25 not page 31. The banter between Frank and Rider could be crisper and punchier. I’m not really getting a feel for their characters. They’re fit and professional, but how do they feel about their work and whoever they work for? Might read further.

    THE HARVESTER

    Read to page 16. I see this script has a lot of fans. I have no idea why, nor do I know what’s going on. Are the people in the boardroom dead or alive? Where is the story headed? Definitely not my thing.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks for having a look, Citizen! Sorry you’re not feeling it.

  • BSBurton

    Really like the idea for ADAM, it’s almost there. Congrats to the writer. I think Big Bear is really high up there and the Harvester is of course a favorite of many folks. I would split my vote between these two scripts.

  • Nicholas J

    My vote: TBD

    Reading on and off while watching World Cup today. So the writers are competing for my attention with what I find to be one of the most exciting sporting events in the world. Also, I’m pretty grumpy, tired, and the weather sucks. So, uh, good luck writers, lol. But hey on the bright side I gotta vote for someone! So you don’t have to outrun the bear, you just have to be faster than everyone else.

    TUESDAY’S GONE
    The bad news is that this concept doesn’t work for me on any level. It’s kinda funny, but would work better as a skit or something, not a feature that people would want to watch. The good news is that ridiculous concepts like this are an automatic read because of how out-there they are, and if the execution is on point, you can really take these types of scripts places. Unfortunately the execution isn’t there. There’s no buildup or subtlety. We’re thrown directly into the ridiculous. There’s nothing to ground us. The only way I can see this working is if it starts out innocent as Tuesday tries to one-up people with her baby, and eventually resulting in murder deep deep into the script. Starting right off with her beating her husband and murdering people does nothing to form a connection with the reader. It’s like how when you read a news story about someone dying in a car accident you get sad, but when you read a news story about a dude taking bath salts and trying to eat someone you just laugh because it’s so far outside your reality. Don’t just throw me into the absurd, build up to it. It also gives nowhere for the character to go in terms of progression since she’s already full throttle extreme.

    ADAM
    This one seems like it could be a cool story, but the writer doesn’t feel the need to help me access it. There’s nothing here for me to latch onto. Am I supposed to relate to the creepy desert guy that digs corpses out of garbage piles and tries to have sex with them or whatever it was he was doing? Am I supposed to relate to the cyborg running from the desert guy and scanning the world like robocop? True, I maybe didn’t give the writer enough time to give me something, and to be honest I’d probably keep reading but THE WRITING style is too EXHAUSTING the way it JUST TELLS YOU everything and RANDOMLY EMPHASIZES every other ELEMENT OF THE SCENE. When the writer focuses on everything it confuses things and I end up focusing on nothing. Keep it simple! All that said, I like the world and the story seems to have potential here. Wouldn’t count this one out of a vote.

    HAVES AND HAVE NOTS
    coming soon

    BIG BEAR
    coming soon

    THE HARVESTER
    coming soon

    • mulesandmud

      HAVES AND HAVE NOTS – Would argue that noir is neither dead nor a genre, but agree about the title and that character name. ‘Marlowe Phillips’ crosses the line between homage and parody, and since those are the script’s very first words, it’s hard to take this one seriously from the get go.

      Then, to add insult to injury, in the very first scene our protagonist with a ham-handed name uses an even more ham-handed pseudonym on her date with the Senator. Referring to each other as Romeo and Juliet is neither clever nor practical, it just demonstrates a pattern of dead-obvious literary references.

      I stopped reading at the next scene, in the hotel room. Marlowe does a striptease, shamelessly revealing she’s wearing a wire, at which point the cops bust in and arrest the Senator. They seem to be arresting him for something he said at dinner, though, so why the hell did Marlowe need to go up to his room, get fondled, and strip for him? Why not bust him at dinner? Because the writer wants to show the strip tease? Fine, but it needs to make logical sense; make the Senator withhold the key evidence until sexy time.

      That kind of easily noticed, easily fixed gap in logic demonstrates minimal consideration from the writer, and loses me completely.

      • Nicholas J

        Educate me then, mules. Name a few recent film noir successes.

        I try not to get too critical of plot details when voting on AOW, especially when it’s based on opening pages. Sometimes what seems like errors or lapses in logic become clearer later on as the plot develops. Maybe she had one more piece of info she wanted and fuzz busted in early? Or maybe Marlowe is just super sadistic and likes to toy with her victims, dangling what they want right in front of them before ripping it away? I dunno, but I think you get the point.

        I try to focus more on things like, does the writer know how to properly write a scene, form a connection, establish a character, entertain the reader, etc.

        • mulesandmud

          Depends on what you mean by ‘recent’ and ‘success’ I guess, but both Winter’s Bone and Inception are financial and artistic wins of wildly different genres, styles, and budgets, both of which fit most definitions of noir, and take great care to incorporate all of its classic elements.

          Am not sure if you really want to discuss this (“Educate me”?), but just in case you do: film noir was never a proper genre, more of a sensibility that carried across many genres, often involving crime in some way since noir centers so strongly on the ideas of corruption and mistrust. Nowadays it tends to get conflated with detective or hard-boiled films, but boxing in noir that way limits one of the most central noir ideas: that everyone has the capacity to be bad, not just gangsters.

          When you call noir a dead genre, what kind of film are you referring to as noir, exactly?

          As for AOW feedback, our foci seem to be in different places, which is fine because it gives the writer a wider variety of reactions to work with. I stand by my note: the logic of the hotel scene is problematic regardless of what plot or character beats come next.

          • Nicholas J

            Didn’t mean to come off as hostile if I did (I warned I was grumpy!) as I legitimately wanted to hear what you had to say.

            Winter’s Bone is a great example. Not sure I’d call Inception film noir, just has some noir elements.

            But just like music, as the amount of content becomes greater, the lines of genre become more blurred, so it’s really hard to say a lot of times, especially with something that isn’t as concrete like film noir.

            Hey, they still make westerns too, but it’s considered a dead genre. I wouldn’t advise an unproven writer to expect success by writing one, just like I wouldn’t with film noir.

          • mulesandmud

            I mean, hey, who the hell knows what noir is, but HAHN is a sexy crime story set in the present (or near future, actually…it says 2015). If that genre is off limits, then we should all just sell our laptops and call it a day, no?

          • Nicholas J

            Well considering the Tracking Board’s 2013 Year in Review doesn’t even have noir or westerns listed as genres, much less have any sales attributed to either, tells you something. The writer here listed their genre as “noir” and spoke about it in the WYSR, so that’s what i went by.

            I’m all for writing whatever you want and wouldn’t say anything is off limits, but just know you’re trying to sell a donkey to someone who’s looking for a horse.

      • Randy Williams

        The writer includes a line of description about Marlowe slowly putting her clothes back on, not embarrassed about her state of undress in front of the authorities. If you read on, this woman has issues, they are not blatant, but you sense it in the details. I can believe she did it on purpose. There is a scene a few pages later in a massage parlor where you sense she makes herself vulnerable on purpose again.

        I hope comments like this don’t refrain anyone from reading this. I’m continuing to read it. This writer has a grip on human frailty and drama starts with that. It is a very fine piece.

        • Nicholas J

          I haven’t read far enough to verify, but this is exactly the type of thing I’m referring to in my response.

        • mulesandmud

          In fairness, you’re quite right. There’s room for an interesting character to emerge from a woman’s decision to go further than necessary in an undercover stint as an escort. I hope it goes somewhere interesting.

          My issue is less with her behavior than with the behavior of the cops in allowing the scene to happen. She can be as kinky as the writer wants, but when the real world gets bent to accommodate her psychology, you start to chip away at the believability of your world. Since this could be fixed in all kinds of ways (perhaps she hides details from the cops until she’s satisfied with the encounter), it registers as sloppy storytelling, not as a character trait.

        • http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1888937/ Rick McGovern

          Maybe she would have done it on purpose, but she would never have been given the chance because the cops waiting outside listening would not have waited and would have went in as soon as they got what they needed to bust the guy.

          • Malibo Jackk

            The typical scenario has a cop say–
            ‘What the fuck is she doing!?’
            And then they burst into the room.

          • mulesandmud

            Even though that’s pretty standard, it’s still an improvement, because it points a finger at her exceptional behavior, instead of having us wonder whether we’re looking at a character eccentricity or a world with different rules or just a sloppy scene. Don’t gloss it as a mystery to be unpacked later: tell us that we’re seeing something important as it happens, so that when we dig deeper later on, we have those earlier dots to connect.

      • Stephjones

        +1 here on the lack of logic of her accompaning the guy to his room then performing a striptease to show she has a wire. I stopped reading for the same reason. Made no sense. Sorry.

    • Nick Morris

      Awesome notes here, man. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope you decide to read on. I’d REALLY like to hear your thoughts on how it all plays out. Cheers!

      • Nicholas J

        Sorry if my notes are going against the type of story you want, but I was drawn to the Sasha’s search aspect to it, and less so to the David side of things, so I’d like to see a more limited POV with her as the focus. I think it would make for a much more powerful and grounded story that doesn’t give away your hand, which will allow you to surprise us left and right while creating a lot of mystery and intrigue. But again, that’s going on very limited info. It was still entertaining regardless.

        Probably won’t get to read on anytime soon, very little free time this week. But I’ll make sure to send you anything else if I do, good luck with it!

        • Nick Morris

          “I like the setting, and I’m not positive how the writer does it or if it’s just my own imagination at work, but I can really see these early scenes on screen with very little description.”

          This comment made my day! Thank you, sir.

  • astranger2

    Read first fifteen pages of each:

    Have and Have Nots:

    I like Marlowe. She kind of has that Kathleen Turner V.I. Warshawski feel and swagger.

    I don’t normally like flashbacks, but I enjoyed the small peek into Marlowe’s insecure past – and was curious how that developed later. The first pages didn’t really pull me in, however, and while I iked the dialogue, some of the lines were too clever, or overly familiar.
    Strong writing though.

    Big Bear:

    I can see how this script received so many accolades. A tight, well-constructed work with nicely drawn characters.

    And while I could totally visualize the action, and see this as a film, it’s not something I’m drawn to. But it’s a personal preference; I’ve just seen too many of this genre. (But that’s not to say it’s not marketable. Reads very well. I wasn’t a Mr. and Mrs. Smith fan
    either, and that obviously was a huge success.)

    Tuesday’s Gone:

    Very clever and witty exchanges between the characters. I laughed out loud at this:
    WYNN
    Baby shits look just like guacamole. I swear to god.

    Like others here, I feel this has great potential—but needs some tweaking. Certainly doesn’t lack in humor – which is the most difficult part, imho.

    Adam:

    Starts fast. A little grisly, but starts fast. Has a Terminator/A.I./Blade Runner feel. Some of the action is a hard to follow, or takes a second reading. Still, a very visual read and a lot
    to captivate the imagination.

    The Harvester:

    I enjoyed the opening scenes. There was enough intrigue, and grounded elements in dialogue and action to balance out the horror sequences. The interaction between Jay and Sasha reads natural, and reveals necessary plot details in a seamless way… and of course, especially with this script… the Devil is in the details… ; )

    I really thought this was an extremely strong AOW group, much stronger on the reads than other offerings, imho. And I could see ANY of them being selected. I was torn, and split my vote.

    My Pick(s): The Harvester and Adam.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks for that. Glad you enjoyed it!

      • astranger2

        I thought you did a great job with the initial pages. I’m trying to catch up on some other scripts, and do some of my own (procrastinated) writing on a project — otherwise I’d read it in its entirety.

        But, I have a feeling I’ll have that opportunity to enjoy it this coming Friday… Good luck to you, Nick!

        • Nick Morris

          Thanks, Stranger. Hope you’re right!

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks, Joker! m/,

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks for checking it out, Rachel. Glad you enjoyed it!

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks, Sebastian!

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks for checking out THE HARVESTER, Patrick! My thinking was that this body would be better preserved than an ordinary one, but nice catch. I’ll try to clarify this. Hope you decide to read on!

  • Bluedust

    Three loglines caught my eye: ADAM, Tuesday’s Gone, The Harvester. Read about twenty of each.

    ADAM
    Great apocalyptic visuals to begin the tale. Really sets mood and tone. The coffins were an intriguing discovery, but later on I was wondering what Bob, our desert man, was smelling when he took a whiff of these caskets. At first I thought he was about to feast on rotting corpses, which I have to admit kept me turning the pages. But then it’s revealed these caskets were hermetically sealed and contained cybernetic humans. So, not quite sure what got him salivating like one of Pavlov’s dogs. When Bob reveals himself, he’s described as a “subhuman creature.” That covers a lot of territory. Would have liked some more detail there. But, I kept picturing Bob as a human who bears the scars and sores of this harsh, possibly radioactive environment. And, what separates him from the marauding cannibals? They too are described as subhuman. I think this stretch of script would have worked better if Bob was a more sympathetic character. Someone who’s managed to hold onto his humanity throughout the post apocalypse. IMO, it would have made his death scene more impactful. Those issues aside, I thought this was a fascinating first twenty. I’ll continue reading.

    TUESDAY’S GONE
    Great title. Shades of John Waters’ Serial Mom here. Sharp, witty, dark writing. Some of these lines had me cracking up. When the detective calls Elijah Wood “Corey”, that was gold. I would agree with some of the commenters who said the story would work better if Tuesday’s descent toward murder should happen gradually. As it reads now, she’s already a psychopath when we meet her, so as a writer you don’t give yourself much room to work with. It’s only a question of will she be caught. Showing her as a decent woman driven to madness by Facebook word assassins would help us identify with her. Who hasn’t wanted to off a troll at some point?

    THE HARVESTER
    This had a fast, gonzo opening. The Grim Reaper as ass-kicking action dude. Very nice. I found the sudden transition to executive boardroom rather jarring, though. Felt like a tonal shift. The following pages didn’t seem to build on that wild opening, IMO. It felt like Bergman(what a name for Death) was spilling out the entire story to us, e.g. the accident, who was behind the accident, why David was killed, etc. And intersplicing this scene with the scenes of Sasha just sort of confused me. I wasn’t feeling the horror or tension here. This felt like setup for the coming bloodbath. Still, I like the idea of a human given the powers of the Grim Reaper. Family Guy and The Simpsons milked the concept for laughs, but the idea feels like a natural for scares. I’ll keep on reading.

    A good bunch of scripts this weekend. My vote: ADAM

    • astranger2

      I loved Serial Mom… from that film, I, and Patty Hearst learned an invaluable lesson… never wear white after Labor Day — even if you THINK it’s a dated fashion rule… ; )

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks for checking out THE HARVESTER, Bluedust! Hope you do read on…

    • Poe_Serling

      Any word on the fate of Black Autumn?

      • Bluedust

        No word from C on that. Maybe it will have a Harvester-esque reemergence at some point. Thanks for asking.

  • Poe_Serling

    My Pick: THE HARVESTER by Nick “The Comeback Kid” Morris.

    I enjoyed this shot of retro horror waaay back on April 19th… so let’s roll the dice again.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks, Poe! I still remember how happy I was when your comment first popped up on AOW last time. “He read it all. And he liked it!” Lol! You’re the man.

      • Poe_Serling

        Hey Nick-

        Congrats!!! Just saw that The Harvester advanced to the next round in the 2014 ScreamCraft Horror contest.

        • Nick Morris

          Just saw that too! Thanks, Poe! So pumped.

          • Poe_Serling

            That kind of news is always a great way to start off your week.

          • Nick Morris

            Hell yeah!

  • charliesb

    Only had time to dive into a few this weekend, but I’m going to try to start Tuesday’s Gone if I get a minute tonight.

    This was a tough pick but my vote is The Harvester (with Big Bear a close second)

    The Harvester
    So much hullabaloo around this script, I had to see what all the fuss is about. I’m not the biggest horror fan (though I love 80’s slashers), so I didn’t think I would like it, but the writing is fairly solid, and I got up to about page 45 before I stopped. A few things I would work on: Your antagonists and your heroes. I don’t quite know how I’m supposed to feel about Death, is he horrible but you can’t help but like him? Is he a nasty piece of work that I should dislike immediately? The fact that his goals are murky doesn’t help. I’d have him give David a concrete reason why he wants him to “Harvest” or just leave it at, “I’m giving you a chance for revenge”, it doesn’t have to be the truth, I just think that it shouldn’t be a question until it needs to be (later on in the script).

    Superman Returns really turned me off any plots that involve real estate as a motivation for a character, so as soon as I found out that Vargas killed David for his property I have to say I did sigh a little – but that’s me, I would prefer something stronger, but it’s not a deal breaker. I do however think your villain Vargas needs some fine tuning. He needs to do more than strut and crow, give him a life, and make one thing about him likeable so that he doesn’t just feel like person we can’t wait to get axed (scythed?).

    Sasha and Jay, overall I like their conversations and interactions, but everything between them also feels a little convenient. Make things harder for them. Maybe he still has a girlfriend. Maybe the club isn’t hiring and he sneaks her in. Look for harder ways for your characters to get what they want. Congrats on getting picked and good luck with it!

    ADAM
    I read up to about page 25. The writing is strong, and the world is interesting. The Bionic man wandering through the streets reminded me of the street chaos in the movie Franklyn. But by page 25, we were still in setup, I wanted to know what this movie was going to be about, who I was rooting for, who I was supposed to booo! Also I couldn’t wrap my head around the imagery of this coffin. It was dragged, towed, picked up, carried. How big is this thing? Congrats and good luck!

    Big Bear
    i can’t quite decipher the tone of this piece. It’s starts off with the feel of an episode of Strike Back (right down to a character’s name) but then veers off into romance novel territory, with a little Mr. and Mrs. Smith thrown in for good measure. I know this script has placed well, and been optioned, so if you’re happy with it, by all means ignore my advice, but I would suggest some character work.

    You said you wanted to focus on the struggle between a married couple, more than the ‘splosions. But right now Frank and Rider don’t feel like a real fleshed out married couple. There is no sense of history, no back story, no tension, no subtext. Their conversations are too light, their sex, dispassionate, their fight over “nothing” felt forced. Married couple do not fight over nothing, there is always something there beneath whatever is being said. Frank telling Rider she needs to work on her “rapport skills” didn’t feel like anything more than a reason to show the audience that she can handle herself. That scene could have been a lot more dramatic, or telling(exposition) or fun.

    For example, let’s say Frank is worried about Rider’s safety whenever she’s on her own. Even though he knows it’s irrational he can’t help it, so he’s constantly attacking her unexpectedly (like when she comes back from the neighbours) to prove to himself that she’s fine. Of course she’s always ready for him and every time he loses he has to pay her 50 bucks, or do the dishes, or agree to try some new spa treatment that she’s obsessed with trying whenever they are stateside.

    You need to use these moments to sketch in your characters backstory and personality. Shortly after that fight your characters lay in bed and tell each other that they’re good fighters. Why not use this scene to show us what it’s like to be married and special forces. Do they lay in bed and talk about the assignment? Do they try to pretend that they have normal jobs and talk about TV and household chores? I quit reading around page 18, after the second uninspired sex scene, I think that there is a movie here, but I need to get a lot more invested in the characters within the first 20 pages. Congrats on your success and good luck with it!

    • Nick Morris

      “I’d have him give David a concrete reason why he wants him to “Harvest” or just leave it at, “I’m giving you a chance for revenge”, it doesn’t have to be the truth, I just think that it shouldn’t be a question until it needs to be (later on in the script).”

      Bergman does reveal his reasons later in the script, and I’ve struggled a lot from draft to draft with how much he SHOULD reveal and when. Tricky to strike that balance between too much info and not enough, particularly with a bloodbath like this, lol!

      Thanks for your vote and for sharing your thoughts!

  • Midnight Luck

    Congrats to all the chosen writers for AoW
    Ok, read at least 10 pages of each.

    BIG BEAR
    Ok, my feelings on this, are… I have seen most of this before. The Chisel jawed muscular man, the Hot fit woman, both so skilled, throwing clever words back and forth, showing off their skill, being cool, and driving fast hot cars. Everyone so slick and cool.

    The idea of high level snipers in a remote cabin trying to evade and take someone out, just makes me think of SHOOTER. So much is reminiscent of that movie. Yes it is a different story, but even the rest of the story reminds me too much of other movies.

    Now, take into account this isn’t my kind of story to begin with, so it may be exactly what others want if they want a Militaristic, testosterone driven movie like this.

    ADAM
    This script (from the log line) sounds too much like ROBOCOP mixed with BLADE RUNNER, so I had reservations.

    Then it surprised me, there is something in the opening, something about the guy climbing the piles of garbage in this post apocalyptic world and well, in all honesty, I don’t know what. I think you have something you can work with in this story. Sadly I don’t think you are there yet. Too much of this steals directly from BLADE RUNNER. Even down to someone having an OWL in his office. Yes it isn’t a robot itself like the BR one is, but just about everything in this is taken from BL.
    If you want to do something that is an homage to something, you can’t blatantly do exactly what they did.
    Then the rest of the story components are too similar to ROBOCOP. It has flashbacks of him remembering times with his wife, etc. The Cyborg bits and pieces can only make others remember that movie.

    I would take some of the gritty, interesting parts of this post apocalyptic world, but come up with a different angle, a much more unique angle.
    Unless this is just a part of the opening, and then becomes very different than those movies.

    HAVE’S and HAVE NOTS

    I agree with another poster, title is a bit tough.
    I also have difficulty with the name MARLOWE for a woman in this. I keep having to remind myself it is a woman because I keep picturing a guy. Just too known of a name for famous guys. Also too on the nose / obvious for a NOIR detective story. Then you immediately follow it with another on the nose obvious and odd thing of having everyone be involved in a Romeo and Juliet reference.

    I am sorry, I had difficulty with this one. I would think about not referencing so many of the most known names / stories / ideas as you are. It doesn’t allow it to seem fresh and personal. It feels like you are just picking and choosing things we already know and that we are getting the same old.

    TUESDAY’S GONE

    First, the log line needs some work. I believe RIPLEYY below offered one, and it was good. Yours has too much info and doesn’t get to the core of what the story is. It has too much extraneous info.

    Ok, as for the story, I am having some troubles with the why’s and how’s. I don’t quite see what the story is, and the logic of why this might happen, or how. What is the thing that will carry this story for 100 pages? Why would this woman do this? Because people didn’t respond correctly to her posting a bazillion pictures of her baby? So that makes her want to go out and actually kill them? And are we supposed to be behind her in this? No one is going to want to support the protagonist in this situation. Maybe that is the purpose, but if it is just for humor, well, humor is based in character, and usually in character darkness and drama. I don’t see where that is pertinent in this particular log line or character. It feels like a quick one of idea that was extended into a whole script.
    Now yes, I haven’t read it all, but it still feels too thin and superficial.
    As I have said to many scripts and writers, DIG DEEPER.
    Really try to find the core of the idea, the characters, something with a truth to it that people will respond to.

    THE HARVESTER

    Read to page 12 on this one.

    I used to be a Huge horror fan as a kid, read every KING book I could, my favorite movie was NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (the first one), and many many other horror related things. Don’t know if things are just different for me now, but overall most horror stories nowadays don’t seem to be as inventive as they were before.

    A lot of possessed children, devil in human form, possessed houses, cabins in the woods.
    No inventive ideas like being killed in your dreams by a madman who was killed long ago by your own crazy parents. That shit was awesome.

    I read to 12 and I am not sure where we are going, what this is about. A ghost story? a devil / death in human form? a Dream?

    Honestly, I am just not captivated by it yet. It feels too familiar. Yes you set up a mystery as to what is going on with the Protag, but I don’t know that I care enough to continue.

    Sorry if that sounds harsh, the writer and this script have a lot of love on SS.
    I am just not seeing what is exciting. By page 12 we have to be grabbed and not let go of.

    —-

    I wish everyone good luck, and am interested to see who comes out on top in voting.

    • Nick Morris

      “A lot of possessed children, devil in human form, possessed houses, cabins in the woods. No inventive ideas like being killed in your dreams by a madman who was killed long ago by your own crazy parents. That shit was awesome.”

      I couldn’t agree more with your assessment of modern horror. I too have a lot of love for ANOES and for the imaginative vibe of 80’s horror in general, which is what I’ve tried to celebrate with THE HARVESTER.

      Admittedly, I have some pretty serious “world-building” happening in Act 1 which can slow things down and lose some readers. I’ll try to streamline these elements more in the next draft.

      Thanks for checking it out, Midnight!

      • Bifferspice

        i wouldn’t worry about losing the reader, Nick. I blazed through your first act. You do a lot of building, but in a good way, and I found it no trouble at all to keep up :)

        • Nick Morris

          Thanks, Biffer!

    • Nicholas J

      Good notes, I agree totally with the ones for Tuesday and Have Nots as you pretty much nailed the reasons I passed on them. No vote though?

    • Bifferspice

      i think your review of tuesday’s gone highlights the dangers of making assumptions after a few pages. she’s meant to be a crazy psycho. she’s the antagonist not the protagonist.

  • Craig Mack

    I have to disagree with a lot if folks on #tuesdaysgone. This isn’t a character driven drama… it’s a dark comedy. Her starting as a PSYCHO throws us right into the story. I don’t want to read 5- 10 pages getting pushed over the edge… I want to read about this CRAZY mother that kills people over Facebook posts. Sometimes you don’t need to know how someone got there… just that they are THERE.

    Furthermore — the story was CRISP and read quickly. Great structure and pacing.
    The Elijah Woods ‘character’ was fantastic.
    This was original. This was different. This was relevant. Kudos.

    The Harvester rewrite was done well. I have a different take on the story…. I’ll save it for the AF if it takes down the prize Good job Nick.

    Adam– wasn’t feeling it from the start.

    C

    • Linkthis83

      I agree completely, C, with her starting as a psycho. I feel it’s a completely different tone to watch her transform.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks, Craig. Look forward to hearing your thoughts on the rewrite either way.
      m/,

    • Bifferspice

      totally agree. there isn’t time for her to transform. that’s a totally different type of film.

    • Beautiful Derek

      Dude….thanks, Craig. I want to buy you a couple of beers.

  • Linkthis83

    I appreciate what you did with this concept and these pages. People tend to have trouble with the scripts that are fun and bold for fun and bold’s sake.

    Congrats, man, and good luck.

  • Malibo Jackk

    The poles closed at 7PM on the west coast.
    I understand that there are still some precincts in Australia
    that have not yet reported.

  • Nick Morris

    Not a big fan of horror? Really?! With a name like cronenbergmorty? Lol!

    ADAM looks awesome too, man. I’d definitely go see this movie. Great job!

  • lonestarr357

    TUESDAY’S GONE – …I liked Tuesday’s “victims” a lot more than I liked her. Way more. Neat dialogue and the subplot got better as it went along, but how am I supposed to sympathize with a complete psychopath?

    • Malibo Jackk

      Become one.

    • Bifferspice

      you’re not :-S

  • bex01

    I’m not sure how this happened but AOW has become my favourite weekly posting on Scriptshadow. When I first discovered the site I wasn’t that interested in the amateur scripts, but now I hang out for them each week. I think it’s because I see all these people who have found the time and inspiration and self-discipline to sit down at their computer and complete a script. Sure, they’re not perfect, but it doesn’t matter. It’s more than I’ve done. I hope to enter AOW one day when I feel I have a piece of work ready, but until then I am so inspired by all the amateurs who submit. Makes me want to hurry back to my computer, bust open Final Draft and just fucking write. So congrats to all the entries! I’ve only had time to read a couple of pages of each so far but the quality seems pretty high up there this week! Will figure out my fav and be back with my vote :)

  • craktactor

    I just came down. It took a little over a week. I’m still a little iffy on the whole “awake and aware” thing, reality and fiction, ya know?

    It was psilocybin… and that goddamn Undertow script. Last time I do that. Anyway… what’s goin’ on?

  • bex01

    Adam

    I really enjoyed the opening of Adam. Like
    the idea of this Bob character living in mountains of waste, scavenging for
    food… I was really drawn in! However, when the Bionic Man escapes from the
    tunnels and reaches Downtown, I feel the story started losing momentum. Too
    much time is given to describing our surroundings, to the Bionic Man learning
    about ‘religion’… and then who is this Dana character? She just feels very
    random. I enjoyed the mysterious opening, but I think we should be getting a
    few answers as to what is actually going on by now (I’m up to page 30).
    Although the Bionic Man has a goal (find a doctor), I still feel like the
    script has become quite vague and meandering. We need more answers. Also, I’m
    not sure how it will translate to screen with the Bionic Man carrying around
    this massive coffin everywhere. Particularly when he is in the club, amongst
    ravers – surely this will look ridiculous? Anyway. Enjoyed the beginning (and
    the character of Bob) but it’s losing steam, however hoping to read further to
    see if the story picks up again.

    (Also – didn’t like the robot sex in the
    club. Really? Can’t you just keep it to a bit of a strip tease and lap dance?
    Do we need robots having sex with crying strippers on stage? Unnecessary.)

    Have and Have Nots

    This script is well-written. They all seem
    to be this week. However, I was lost when the police burst in and Marlowe is
    revealed as a journalist wearing a wire. Ummm…
    I don’t think this would happen. It gives the script a very TV movie or
    straight-to-DVD sort of feel for me, with this apparent disregard for
    plausibility. I’m sure if the cops decided this was the best way to proceed,
    they would have their own undercover agents to work with, rather than resort to
    some journalist who is hungry for a story. However, I like noir and like the
    writer’s style, so would like to read on to see where it goes.

    Big Bear

    I feel this script has a lot of potential but
    I’m not drawn in yet. There’s no tension or suspense at the cabin – I’m not
    even entirely sure what they’re doing here. Obviously something to do with the
    middle-eastern couple… but what? To kill the man? Why? Some clarification might
    help draw the reader into the story. Also the relationship between Frank and
    Rider feels a bit forced to me. Their physical fight came out of nowhere – just
    an excuse to have the couple show off their skills. Stops the story in its
    tracks. The dialogue in the dinner scene is boring and uninspired. You can
    pretty much cut ALL of it out without affecting anything. If there was NO
    dialogue it would probably even be better – at least it would be replaced with
    a silent sort of awkwardness. At the moment I don’t feel like there’s anything
    going on under the surface, even though there is so much potential for there to
    be! I assume this man is very dangerous? Give us some more details! Punch up
    the tension! Make us feel like things could go very wrong in this scene.

    OK – just read to the end of the dinner
    scene, I see what the writer was trying to do here. Make everything seem very
    boring and mundane and then turn the scene. I still stand by what I said
    though, the dialogue was way too boring. At the very least, we should get a better
    sense of Frank and Rider’s characters. And if dialogue really isn’t coming to
    you, then have something else going on. Maybe Frank and Rider just had a fight?
    They’re trying to ignore it and get on with their jobs but it still comes
    through somehow… This is just a quick suggestion so may not fit and would have
    to be fleshed out… but you say you want to focus on the characters and their
    lives, yet I don’t see any focus on the characters and the complexity of their
    marriage so far.

    The Harvester

    Nick, I would love to see your script
    reviewed just because it has such a strong following here and I think you
    deserve a chance. But I’m so sorry to say, horror is REALLY not my thing! So
    you’re fighting a losing battle with me unfortunately. I don’t love the concept.
    I think your writing is competent, although I only sort of skimmed through…
    unfortunately I don’t really have any constructive notes. Nothing grabbed me.
    But like I said, losing battle. Good luck to you! I’ll try and give it another
    shot if you are picked for Fri so I might be at least slightly helpful

    Tuesday’s Gone

    Sorry – the concept doesn’t grab me. Would
    normally crack it open and at least try, but I’m at work and have limited time
    and know that however well this script is written, I am not going to like the
    story. Another losing battle. Sorry!

    Conclusion – I don’t know who to vote for!
    If I’d read only the first 10 or so of each, I would’ve gone with Adam, but I
    read enough to feel like the story started falling apart… so I’m going to read
    a bit more tonight, hopefully one of the scripts will grab me!

    • bex01

      Ahhhhhh….. I may be changing my mind. I did go back and read Tuesday’s Gone, and it was actually really funny. I loved the humour. Loved that Elijah Wood turns up. Loved the “babies are douche bags”. But I’m torn! Cos while I enjoy reading it, I don’t think I would watch this film. So I vote for Have or Have Nots for the characters and dialogue, or maybe Tuesdays Gone because it made me laugh, but also would like The Harvester to have its chance because it probably deserved it last time, and also I did like Adam at the beginning, and I like the concept for Big Bear, just not the execution… In conclusion, I’m clearly indecisive so should probably be ignored

  • Kirk Diggler

    Tuesday’s Gone – For some reason Tuesday reminds me a little of Nicole Kidman’s character in “To Die For”.

    The title is also a great song by Lynryd Skynryd.

    This is fucking funny.

    “DECLAN…strapped to TUESDAY’s back in a backpack carrier. The baby is also wearing a SKI MASK. A tiny one.”

    The descriptions of the 16 year old girls amuse me.

    “This is WYNN. She’s sixteen and flippant.” and … “SADIE. She’s a little jerk.”

    The dialogue on babies is making me laugh. Not sure what it says about me.

    SADIE:
    “Ugh. Ladies like this need to realize that nobody cares. And that their lame babies suck all the dicks.”

    WYNN: ” I hate babies.”

    SADIE: “Babies are douche bags.”

    LOL.

    Only read the first twelve so far but I like it. It’s satirical, well written, funny. Can no one else see that?

    I will read more tomorrow.

    • Citizen M

      This type of script is as fragile as a bubble. You absolutely have to believe that what is happening could happen, otherwise POOF! the whole thing collapses into an implausible mess. That requires some very careful pipe-laying from the author.

      “Alice laughed: “There’s no use trying,” she said; “one can’t believe impossible things.”

      “I daresay you haven’t had much practice,” said the Queen. “When I was
      younger, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve
      believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
      — Alice in Wonderland

      I’m no Red Queen. I can manage maybe two impossible things. After that my brain explodes.

      • Bifferspice

        “This type of script is as fragile as a bubble. You absolutely have to
        believe that what is happening could happen, otherwise POOF! the whole
        thing collapses into an implausible mess.”

        wow, i completely disagree with this. the ludicrous over the top nature of it is what makes me laugh. why so serious?

      • Kirk Diggler

        I dunno, Citizen. Once you accept someone can walk on water you’ll believe almost anything after that. You said it yourself, once you categorize it as absurdist or farce you can just sit back and enjoy the ride. Granted, I haven’t read the whole script and it could completely fall apart, but I thought there was enough promise in the opening pages to continue reading.

        • Citizen M

          You have to draw the line somewhere otherwise it’s just silly. Ever listen to two stoned people talk while you’re not stoned? Like that.

          • Bifferspice

            do you like “airplane”?

          • Citizen M

            Loved Airplane. Hated Top Secret! which was directed by the same team. It went too far. Over the top and down the other side. Way down.

          • Bifferspice

            agree entirely. but airplane is completely ludicrous. how does that fly (!) with your claim that “You absolutely have to believe that what is happening could happen,
            otherwise POOF! the whole thing collapses into an implausible mess”?

          • Citizen M

            I don’t think Airplane was completely ludicrous. I’m sure the production team came up with good gags that weren’t included because they felt they didn’t fit. In other words, it wasn’t “anything goes, as long as it’s funny”. I’m just guessing, admittedly.

            It’s like fragrance. The concentration makes a big difference. Goat’s pee at very low concentrations has a pleasant smell, apparently, and is included in some perfumes. But in high concentrations it has a dreadful stank.

            Similarly in movies. There is a point beyond which something goes from hilariously funny to just plain stupid. But it’s a subjective decision. It’s not the same point for everyone.

          • witwoud

            The way I see it is, every comedy lies somewhere along the scale of believability. At one end, you get those comedies which take place in a more-or-less realistic world (e.g., When Harry Met Sally.) Right at the other end, you get Monty Python and the Holy Grail, where nothing makes sense and isn’t supposed to.

            Here’s the thing: you need to indicate firmly to your audience where your comedy lies on the scale, and you have to be consistent. I read a few pages of Tuesday’s Gone, and didn’t enjoy it, because I had no idea what the rules of the game were, what sort of comedy it was meant to be, what sort of world we were in. It was a jumble of different styles.

    • jamesbrownband

      thought this was very funny if not a little too far out there.

  • Gilx

    I would go with TUESDAY’S GONE for review.

    Read the entire script. Almost stopped reading shortly after Elijah Wood showed up as himself. It seemed pretentious and “one-too-many” on the element scale, but it was actually well-handled overall, and added to the script. Not sure what that does to your marketing potential, but, as far as the script goes I surprised myself by finally believing it should stay in.

    I don’t have a lot of notes…

    It feels like you maybe have some pacing (and geographical) problems in the script, starting primarily after everyone gets to the Glowing Tombstone party. That happens on page 65, but that is also the site of the climax. In retrospect, it felt like you needed to delay everyone getting there until somewhat later, even 15-20 pages later, and then kick it all into high gear. Instead, things slump there a little, even though several murders are taking place in the vicinity and a bunch of very entertaining characters are running around. Is there some way to take some of the action back out into the community, the mall, the hood, or even into Tuesday’s home, anywhere, just so we don’t spend 45 pages at the final party? (And why is the tombstone glowing???)

    I questioned the use of Jeremy, Tuesday’s husband, since his arc seems like a tease. He’s about to grow as a character when he arrives and takes Tuesday down, but then she recovers, as menacing as ever, and Jeremy sort of stumbles off out of the story, stabbed. Since his actions amount to very little, I wondered whether you could somehow combine the characters of Fred and Jeremy? (Since they are both in need of a type of redemption.) Fred’s so comically clueless, making his own wife the villain could be fun, although it’s a major restructuring. I would first try to beef Jeremy up a bit and make us want to see him give Tuesday her final comeuppance, then feature him more actively at the end. Maybe he and Fred can jump in the car together to take her down? You might have to nix a teen character or two in order to beef him up, for length. If somethig like that didn’t work, it might be worth considering getting rid of Jeremy altogether, or making him a one-off.

    Wondering if you need all of the Wynn, Sadie, Avery characters.They occasionally ran together, when they were not filling specific plot needs. You have a LOT of kids running around at the end. By the time Wynn stumbles out of the woods to announce Brandt is dead somewhere else, and Avery is also somewhere else, my reaction was “Oh. I guess they haven’t found those kids yet. *sigh*” Maybe focus on one girl who is on Tuesday’s hitlist but doesn’t deserve to be…make us care about her and make her the focus of Tuesday’s trip to Glowing Tombstone, but kill the rest off earlier? Also, Kevin the Crip seems to be in the script because you had a (very funny) gag where Elijah reads the supposed letter from the Crips out loud and now you were stuck with Crips in the movie. The scene with Spookie providing some meager rationale for Kevin to show up at the end was perhaps unnecessary. Is there some way to keep the gag with the letter, but then leave the Crips out of the climax? Kevin serves to finally move the action out of the graveyard, but it feels convenient/contrived by then. Too many people running around. (But congrats on making most of them stand out.)

    The tone is a problem at times. That, or I’m just getting old. But you have some really, really broad Will Ferrel-type humor in Fred Dekker. Once I read him that way, he was hysterical. And then you have teenage girls being strangled and immolated alive, and boxcutter throat slittiings. All together on screen. Some director might make that work, but it’s not obvious in the reading as to how. In the reading, it feels disjointed (to me). Definitely some deep dark black comedy moments if kept in, but how they will play with the broader humor of Dekker is a question mark. And, of course, it could all be genius and I’m just not seeing it yet.

    And that last sentence is the reason I want to see it reviewed this week.

  • bex01

    This comment makes me want to read on with Adam. Not the mention of the “syringe-into-testicles” scene! The fact that Zero seems to love the story. I did enjoy the beginning a lot, so would like to see where it goes. I love the world so far, just thought the story slowed down a lot after Bob’s death (RIP Bob, he was my favourite character). I’ll give it another shot!

  • Midnight Luck

    you just read the scripts, or the ones you can, or as much as you can or want to, and then in your post on this blog you say which one you vote for….

    see above^^^^^ and below vvvvvvv

    hope that is clearer than mud

  • gazrow

    If I had as many first time (probably one time only) posters gushing over my script as one of this week’s entrants. I’d be… I dunno? EMBARRASSED? GUILT-RIDDEN? ASHAMED? GRATEFUL?

    Just saying.

    Oh, yeah and my vote goes for TUESDAY’S GONE.

    • Nicholas J

      They’re even all upvoting each other. These drive-by voters are getting smarter!

      • gazrow

        They’re definitely getting smarter. Hopefully, Carson won’t be fooled by this blatant cheating?

        • Nicholas J

          The real key to doing this is the long con. Create multiple accounts and post great insightful comments using each of them. Do it for a few years, lying in wait and slowly building up community cred with each account. Then when you submit your script to AOW you can vote using these fake regular commenters and nobody will be the wiser. It’s the perfect plan!

          • Matthew Garry

            That’s what the guy behind the JakeBarnes and Grendl accounts thought, and then something happened…something terrifying.

          • Bifferspice

            that’s my favourite SS comment for a long while – proper laugh out loud :-D

    • Matthew Garry

      It’s up to a degree now where I find it humourous, with fake twirly moustaches, ill-fitting beards and wigs, top-hats and over the top accents.

      Especially neat is the combination “I’m a long time reader” with “incidentally, how does one actually vote?”

      I guess it’s just someone’s class or writer’s group or something trying to be supportive. I fully trust Carson’s highly trained deductive skills will manage to pick out these cleverly disguised voices and weight their opinion accordingly.

      • gazrow

        “Especially neat is the combination “I’m a long time reader” with “incidentally, how does one actually vote?”

        Or the other classic. “Long time lurker first time poster, this script is so great I was compelled to vote!”

        Yeah – hopefully Carson will pick up on this? Would hate to see THE HARVESTER miss out on an AF review because someone tried to stack the deck!

      • Nicholas J

        http://i.imgur.com/cDWGWEq.jpg?1

        Yiss, ‘ello, I am a first time commenter. I vould like to vote for zee script that I think is zee best written and not at all one that my friend wrote.

  • Stephjones

    Hey, beautiful,
    I loved your concept. Only read the first 15 pages and I like what you’re going for. I agree we don’t need to see Mom descend into psychosis but I think your set-up in the very first pages should be darker…and funnier.
    What if, instead of hubby being in bed, have him duct taped in the bottom of the closet…wearing a diaper? Tuesday talks to him as if it’s perfectly normal. He just makes muffled noises of panic because he has a pacifier duct taped over his mouth.
    In Walmart, have the woman SNIFFLING, rather than talking. She obviously has the flu. She barely notices Declan. Tuesday doesn’t like her being anywhere near Declan and then…Declan SNEEZES. That’s it. Tuesday decides the woman must die. But I wouldn’t have Tuesday kill the woman directly. Let her murderous impulses build a bit. Maybe she just causes the women to run into a telephone pole and the woman gets carted off with a sheet over her?. Maybe Tuesday is a tad freaked out by what she’s just done. then Declan…SNEEZES again? We see Tuesday harden. Whoever fucks with her baby…dies.
    Just a thought. Needs a tad better set- up somehow, then we can be off and running with it.
    get’s my vote.

  • Malibo Jackk

    It’s 6AM. The poles have closed. But the voting goes on.
    YOU CAN STILL VOTE ONLINE!
    Vote for the script of your choice.

    Press the START key — and fire up your computer.

  • Citizen M

    If you have a touch screen, press the big red button.

    If you do not have a touch screen, you’re shit out of luck.

    • Craig Mack

      Well played, Citizen… well played.

  • Nicholas J

    I think your logline is what confused people and is what got me. You presented it as if Tuesday were the protagonist and it was a story about her.

    The logline to Halloween isn’t “Michael Myers is a crazed psychopath that has penchant for killing teenagers.” It is instead “Laurie runs from a crazed knife-wielding psychopath.”

    A story is a progression, and by selling Tuesday Wilson as your story, people expected to see her progress.

    I expect if you sold this as “Elijah Wood goes on a ride along and hunts down a crazy killer mom” or “Teenagers run from a crazy killer mom after making harmless comments on Facebook” you would get a much better response.

    And along those same lines, Tuesday, like Michael, will become the star of your film, but don’t write it like she is. We don’t typically see things from the monster’s perspective, and it’s for a very good reason.

    We get limited encounters with Michael, and that causes him to be a mysterious and scary force. If we watched the world through Michael’s eyes and saw him walk around all day and hunt down teenagers, yeah it’d be cartoony and laughable. This is what happened with Tuesday, at least in the limited pages I read. But maybe that’s the point since you say it is a satire?

  • Bifferspice

    three grabbed my attention: tuesday’s gone, haves and have nots, and the harvester.

    so far, only read tuesday’s gone. i really liked it. lots of good comedy, a clean driving script that kept me reading. i’ll comment on the other two if i get time to read them, but they’d have to go some to top this, i think.

    • Nick Morris

      Hope you get a chance to check out THE HARVESTER, Biffer!

      • Bifferspice

        Hey man, I read the whole thing. It’s really good. I tell you what, your ACTUAL horror (with that, I mean the real violence, deaths and nasty visceral stuff) is fucking amazing. you are so imaginative and visual and energetic that it kind of terrifies me – are you a serial killer? :-D it’s definitely your strongest suit, and here you have fitted it with a good premise, and some excellent ideas. it all fits within a solid structure too, so you have an awful lot going for you.

        i’m less keen on certain bits, but they’re not major, I don’t think. i would like you to go more all out on sasha. she’s not troubled, man. you clearly want her all messed up, but she just isn’t. she’s well spoken, well adjusted, polite, enthusiastic, pulls guys attention left right and centre, knows how to choose the one she wants, discards the rest effortlessly. then, to make her troubled, you throw in a bit of self-harming and a nose ring. and that accounts for the murdered parents, shitty foster home background and complete loneliness. i don’t buy it, man. that self harming thing is a horrible shortcut that’s pretty insulting to people who do self-harm. your solution is to live in the moment? jesus! if i was still a fucked up teenager (who is the type most likely to love this film), man i’d be pissed off at that! she should be snarling at everyone, especially jay, who she clearly falls for but won’t let herself get near. you make it all so goddamn easy for her, and him, that we don’t find out anything about either of them. and everyone is itching to tell her about how her parents died, even alex, who should be denying they ever fucking existed, flat out lying that they even had a place there. not saying how he remembers a “random” car accident twenty years ago, that screams “it was US!”

        speaking of which, i liked alex. i liked how he wasn’t evil, and was actually doing all the running around. i liked how it became more and more of a headache for him. (one thing, i liked vargas being pissed off about the storm – nice tie in with the harvester appearance horror trope of lightning etc, fucking with his non-horror trope golf course. but i didn’t like him saying he could control the weather. he should do the throwing the plant pot in the fountain, but just not say anything. he knows he can’t control it, so does alex. throw it in, glare at alex and everyone else, and then say “clear that up” and storm off.

        i didn’t like any of the psychiatric stuff, the speeches where characters open up by saying what they’re feeling. the less of that, the better. it’s pretty damn difficult not to be cliched there, and i think it works better by suggestion and subtext anyway. her shrugging jay away saying she’s fine is a lot better than saying how she’s all fucked up cos her parents died. we know her parents died. as far as i can see, it doesn’t matter a jot whether jay knows or not.

        all the deaths at the end were brilliantly written, as i say, but i felt underwhelmed by vargas’s death. you had us wanting it throughout, and then it got so lost among the more imaginative ones, or maybe there were so many that by then it just didn’t matter. this is a tough one. it’s clearly the whole point of the script that he kills so many, but there are so many innocent deaths, the guilty ones carry no weight. it was the one where he killed the two golfers i think, that had me confused in the shift. he reluctantly killed fred, and then said he didn’t want to, and then all of a sudden, he was stabbing people through the face with golf clubs with such vicious creativity that he was all ends up a fucking psycho loving his job. i never really understood why. this carries through. the premise made me think it was going to be ‘empowered revenge’ (no idea if that’s a genre, but it is now, in my mind anyway). someone killed by injustice is granted unlikely powers to wreak all sorts of justice and revenge. and then, reading it, i thought it was going to be great seeing how him and sasha interacted, etc, and to see him get revenge on this vargas guy. but that all got lost in the wash. he was so busy slaying innocent pensioners that he didn’t seem to give a shit who he was killing, including going for sasha, her love interest, and pretty much ignoring vargas. you show us him finding out that he was murdered, and his only remit is to kill people. so why does he go after randoms and not the people who killed him and made his daughter an orphan. nothing in there seems to indicated he needed kill EVERYONE. it didn’t really hang together, and i wanted to relish the harvester’s crazy all-conquering powers (we were never really in doubt as to his awesomeness, he was never in ‘trouble’, i guess except the end, but that was a bit confusing). it felt like his awesome destructiveness was going to be targeted at vargas, but it wasn’t. and i couldn’t really relish all these nice people getting killed, including many that we hadn’t even been properly introduced to.

        man, i’m rambling. it’s very well written, and i really enjoyed it. take it as a good sign that i’ve written so much. my vote still goes to tuesday gone, but i have to say on any other week i’d have voted for this. it must be the strongest AOW lineup i’ve seen, and i’ve only read two scripts!

        • Nick Morris

          “(I mean the real violence, deaths and nasty visceral stuff) is fucking amazing. you are so imaginative and visual and energetic that it kind of terrifies me – are you a serial killer? :-D”

          I take this as high praise! Not sure what that says about me, lol!

          These are really great observations, Biffer! The questions that are raised for you as a reader identify key issues that, as the writer, I don’t even see anymore and gaps that need to be filled. I’ve been over it so many times that I often cut things that should be left (and vice-versa) because it’s already clear in my head.

          With regards to the self-harm, I do have some experience (albeit 2nd hand) with this. It’s been described to me as means of controlling one’s emotional pain and that (even moreso than Sasha’s past) correlates with the theme of ‘control’. It’s the only definite way that Sasha knows how to feel like she’s in control.

          David is fighting for control of his own soul (and eventually, his body too). Sasha wants control of her life. Bergman/Death is trying to take control of a looming war between heaven and hell and, thus, the fate of mankind. And Vargas, obviously, needs control over everything.

          We spend our entire lives seeking control. Over ourselves, our environment and over others. But in the end, something random and unexpected is gonna fucking blindside each and every one of us and, try as we may, there isn’t a damn thing anyone can do about it.
          Which is why I really wanted the Harvester’s path of destruction to be as wide, random and chaotic as possible. As he absorbs the souls of his victims, he loses more and more of himself until, in the end, it’s all he can do (and then some) to resist killing his own daughter.

          There’s some business on pg 39 between Bergman and David about it not being their role to judge and that one is as good as the next for Bergman’s purposes.

          I’m not saying that any of this is necessarily what’s best for the script or not. Just where my head was regarding some of the things that didn’t work for you.

          Thanks again for reading the whole thing, dude! I really appreciate that. I always enjoy your comments here and respect your opinion. It’s awesome insight like yours that will help me strike the right balances.

  • Bifferspice

    i think your script was fantastic – read the whole thing. made me laugh a few times. by the way, i really liked the idea of her trying to kill a guy by watching a youtube vid of how to break someone’s neck, and i think you missed a trick by having it work first time. you could have him just going “OW!” and her having to rewind and play it again, maybe it lags just at the important bit, etc. i think that’s a great moment, and one you could milk for more comedic gold :)

    i did roll my eyes at her saying “and i don’t know anything about gangs” and him going “aha! i didn’t mention them!” man, that shit’s so old, and your script is so daring and fresh, i’d rather you avoided the cliched shit. unless you’re mining the cliche for laughs, but you didn’t there.

    you had so many good ideas for this, and mingled them all so well, and your dialogue was great, so different for each character. oh, forgot to say, i loved the gangs, especially the one doing positive things in the community. hahaha! brilliant. i could really see that playing out on screen. wouldn’t be at all surprised if someone wanted to make this. i think it’s fresh, funny, and really well executed. great job, man.

  • Nick Morris

    THE HARVESTER has advanced to the next round of the 2014 ScreamCraft Horror Script Contest!!!

    Check out the list here: http://www.screencraft.org/blog/2014-screamcraft-horror-script-contest-quarter-finalists-announced/

    Thanks to Poe for the heads-up. Very exciting!

    • Linkthis83

      See, told you I’m probably wrong ;)

    • Craig Mack

      Great Job Nick. Hope you advance to the finals. Good luck.

      • Nick Morris

        Thanks, Craig!
        m/,

    • astranger2

      Nice job, Nick. Congrats!

      • Nick Morris

        Thanks, stranger!

    • Beautiful Derek

      Just finished The Harvester. Easy read and I dug the hell out of it. Nice work and congrats, Nick!

      • Nick Morris

        Thanks, Derek. I haven’t finished TUESDAY’S GONE yet, but I’m loving it so far! Anyone who seeks to bring a sense of fun back to the horror genre is an ally of mine. And this is loads of fun! I hope Carson digs it too and I look forward to reading your AF review. Congrats, brother!

        • jamesbrownband

          same. Tuesday’s Gone was really really well written. This was maybe the best week for AOW since I’ve been reading SS, even with a spot of controversry… I think every one of these scripts could have won most weeks. if they hadn’t been paired against each other.

  • ElectricDreamer

    Congrats to all the AOW Thunderdome victims, I mean candidates.
    Five scripts enter. All get notes. But only 1-3 of you will land in the AF spotlight. ;-)

    AOW Winner: TUESDAY’S GONE.
    Honorable Mention: THE HARVESTER.

    ADAM —
    Five pages for a post-apocalyptic anonymous body drag and sniff is a lot.
    The lack of character names makes it hard for me to relate to anything.
    Not even sure if this is our galaxy. Save for the “Germanic roots” bit.

    P. 7 Make Bob a little more hospitable up front. He’s nice here.
    If he’s a genial subhuman from the stat, I’d be more invested in your opener.
    The first five pages have decent prose, but didn’t engage me.

    P. 7 I’d reconsider using your slug line for a weather report.
    Set the mood with your prose, not format choices.

    P. 8 Have some kind of INDICATOR activate when Bob opens the coffin.
    That way you can FORESHADOW the reader meeting Ferraira.
    It’s boring to be told that’s how the Bionic Man was located.
    Give the reader a VISUAL CUE so we do some narrative math and stay hooked.

    P. 9 Have Ferraira REACT to the news of the coffin detection.
    Show the reader when he first finds out and use that to intro Ferraira.
    That’s a stronger way to make an impression on the reader here.
    Let us meet him as he emotes about his new found goal. It will crystallize his character.

    P. 11 The emotional aspects of the Bionic Man are fuzzy for me.
    In prose, he emotes his “heart sinking”. Then you have him imitating smiles.
    Shouldn’t he be learning facial expressions before complex emotions?
    Jeff Bridges in “Starman” can best illustrate what I’m saying here.

    P. 13 Bob reads dumb here. He agrees quickly to go against his own advice.
    I can’t see why he’d risk his life in the apocalyptic night.
    I also wish Bob and Bionic Man would give us some INSIGHT into HISTORY.
    What happened to this planet? Is it even Earth?

    P. 15 I’d be more moved by Bob’s death if he wasn’t such a dumb ass.
    Who goes out searching for junk in the middle of a cannibal-filled night?
    How did Bob survive this long without some mad self preservation skills?

    P. 17 The Old West here feels random and very old school Crichton.
    Maybe if there was any kind of set up for this, I could get behind the story.

    P. 20 I’m stopping here. Nuns in the Old West spotuing scripture.
    Seems we’re borrowing heavily from A.I. in this section and Blade Runner all over.
    And that connects to my overall issue here. Nothing new going on.
    I need at least ONE SPIN on these tropes to freshen up the narrative.

    PASS.

    • ElectricDreamer

      HAVES AND HAVE NOTS —
      P. 2 Bates’ sucky campaign slogan wouldn’t win him anything.
      Take the bait implies you’re being set up. Who votes for that guy?

      P. 5 Marlowe should SIGNAL the cops somehow.
      How’d they know when to break into the room?
      Give her a signal or establish how the cops were keeping tabs on Marlowe.
      That way you can generate SUSPENSE with the DRAMATIC IRONY.

      P. 6 Not sure cops can get away with gut-punching a politician anymore.
      That’s a little too 20th century in this 21st century L.A.

      P. 6 Marlowe stands there with her dress at her ankles for two pages?
      That paints a pretty silly and gratuitous scene for the reader.
      No one would let her stand there like that. Come on, author.

      P. 7 No way cops and journalists are that chummy and sting criminals together.
      Why did they specifically need Marlowe to incriminate Bates?
      They would never send in a civilian like that for a routine entrapment.

      P. 8 Marlowe should say “peace”, not piece.

      P. 9 Now Marlowe’s getting a week off for helping out the cops?
      Bates is super dumb for not recognizing a top reporter in town.
      Frank Underwood in HOUSE OF GAMES knows them all. And uses them like tools.
      Sorry, but this whole opener doesn’t stand up to even mild scrutiny.

      Newspapers don’t REWARD reporters for going on illegal stings with cops.
      That brings LAWSUITS to the newspaper. You see where I’m going here…
      Marlowe should be PUNISHED for her reckless behavior in pursuing a story.
      Why isn’t her boss furious with her? Human behavior not lining up here.
      She should be THROWN OUT, not given a vacation.

      P. 10 Since when are giant peace signs iconic for the 90s?

      P. 12 A shattered glass and slurred lines of dialogue.
      You’re playing the alcoholic card here awful hard.
      Perhaps a more subtle human approach to alcoholism is the way to go.
      Drunks with a conscience tend to be the ones wrapped up in juicy conflict.

      P. 13 If Marlowe knows Raymond has a short fuse, why ANTAGONIZE him?
      She’s wise-cracking it up the moment he arrives. Marlowe’s a nutter.
      Why do that if you know your brother has an epic short fuse?
      Then she tries to put out the fire after she riles Raymond up.
      The plot agenda here is trampling most of the logical human behavior.

      P. 15 Now Marlowe’s crying, but she started it all! She’s the manipulator here.
      I’m confused. Are you intentionally throwing your protag under the bus?
      She’s really sociopathic in this scene. No regret for egging on Raymond.

      I’m stopping here. The story elements aren’t gelling for me.
      Like a lot of noir specs, there’s plenty of elements nicely arranged here.
      But the nifty sociopathic character stuff is obliterated by poor plotting.

      PASS.

    • ElectricDreamer

      BIG BEAR —
      P. 3 How would someone’s breathing be detectable in a speeding car?
      And not sold on the Art of War quote. Reads a tad pretentious.
      Dazzle me with how your story connects to history, instead of quoting it.

      P. 6 Commenting on the savageness of man seems a bit redundant here.
      I think two killers already know that fact pretty well about humanity.
      Less empty calories in the dialogue, more character beats please.

      P. 9 I’d be more likely to get invested in your tale if I knew the MISSION.
      Establishing any part of a mission sets up goals and potential stakes.
      Give me something concrete to ground me in any semblance of a story.

      You’re being deliberately vague to the reader about the mission.
      Problem is, VAGUENESS does not equal MYSTERY. It never does.
      The absence of any information trail simply leaves the reader confused.

      P. 11 I doubt a milk request would flush out anyone truly wishing to hide.
      People in hiding tend not to stick their heads up for something so trivial.

      P. 12 Why would some super smart assassin reveal her identity so easily?
      Can’t they just look into cabin 2 with a scope to verify the target?
      I mean, now the guy’s tipped off that people are hanging around.
      Folks that do wetwork and black bag ops for a living are pretty smart.

      P. 15 With the amount of skin in this script, the name Rider comes off seedy.
      I mean, that phonetically pretty much sumps up women in this story so far.

      P. 23 I have no idea what just happened or why? Zero investment.
      Why is the reader the only one that doesn’t know what’s going on?
      Yeah, I recall that movie, it’s called “The Village”. No thanks.
      If these are terrorists, why were they so easy to dupe?

      I’m stopping here. The elasticity of my disbelief has been snapped.
      The author chooses to keep the reader in total plot darkness.
      You have to throw us a bone to keep us turning pages.

      There’s no way Rider could’ve known that guy would be mad at her and come over.
      Which is the PLOT CONVENIENCE you’re hanging this entire sequence on.
      People in Frank’s line of work do not rely on circumstance to complete missions.
      Plot convenience works best when it COMPLICATES things for the Protag.

      Everything comes too easy for your Protags here. These terrorists are idiots.
      Anyone with half a brain could’ve seen through Rider.
      It took over twenty pages to bring down these two bumblers.
      Action beats should be earned, not force fed through convenient plotting.

      PASS.

    • ElectricDreamer

      THE HARVESTER —
      I wrote up a full set of notes last week for this.
      So, I’ll be curious to see if any of those suggestions helped out.

      P. 2 Still struggling with Death’s portrayal here. He kills David. Why?
      If there was a special reason why Death chose David, I’d be more invested.
      Perhaps Death watches the murder, sees the killer. But we don’t.
      Death can later take off his “work clothes” and reveal himself to be Bergman.
      Show us here that he has the data that David will crave later.

      P. 4 I’d be more specific about the “baby girl” thing.
      It doesn’t come across that Sasha is an infant at the time of David’s death.
      Be clearer about that… “Our baby’s with a friend. She needs us, please.”
      Bergman can say, “Don’t worry, your spawn grew up just fine on her own.”
      David learns he’s been here twenty years waiting for Bergman. Bummer.

      P. 10 All this data from Bergman should come before we meet Sasha.
      It’s too soon to smash cut to Sasha on page four.
      We need to be grounded more in your MYTHOLOGY before meeting her.
      Then slide in there, “You can call me Bergman.”
      David says he needs to know what happened to Sasha.
      Bergman tries to dissuade him from living in the past.
      David’s confused… Past? What past? Bergman reveals She’s twenty. What?!?

      P. 11 Feels way too soon for Sasha to achieve her quest with Dale.
      Now what is her purpose in staying in town? Mission over. Is she broke?
      Did Sasha use the last of her cash to get to town on a wing and a prayer?
      Perhaps Dale doesn’t tell Sasha they’re dead. Dale only leads her to the CABIN.

      At the cabin, an OLD SHERIFF pulls up and questions Sasha & Jay.
      She shows him the picture. Sheriff has a visceral reaction to the image.
      Then tells her the sad story of her parents. Jay empathizes with Sasha.
      The Sheriff suggests Sasha move on, there’s nothing left here for her.
      Perhaps he’s harsh with her because he’s one of the CONSPIRATORS?
      The old Sheriff was a young deputy that played along with the “accident” maybe.

      P. 20 Feel like there’s too much intercutting early on that’s diffusing the story.
      Give us longer beats, there’s a certain burden of investment to your tale.
      Scaling it back the edits will help ground the reader in some mythology.

      If the Sheriff is a prick, that EXTENDS and TOUGHENS Sasha’s GOAL.
      This way, she has to confront Vargas if she wants any answers.
      Let’s say… Sasha will go to the golf course, she fails to reach Vargas on her own.
      Jay offers to get her on the inside, by helping her get a job. Mission continues…
      With this new trajectory, Sasha has a plan of attack we’re on board with.
      She’s got to go through the motions of the job to eventually get to Vargas.

      As written, everything comes too easy and too fast for Sasha.
      Her GOAL is fulfilled on PAGE NINE. Why is she still in this story?
      Consider deepening and extending her GOAL with MINI-QUESTS along the way.
      Too soon to resubmit to AOW, the early pages still need attention.
      I like the overall story, but Act One is not setting up the gorefest well.

      CONSIDER WITH REVISIONS

      • Nick Morris

        Can’t thank you enough, Electric, for the amazing notes last week and more great stuff today! Awesome insights and ideas, all always. Sorry as hell that it didn’t get your vote, but I’m gonna look at all of these things with my “next big swing” at it.

        Did you see the Harvest Moon?!!!

        • ElectricDreamer

          Next one’s a supermoon on September 8th.

          Good scripts inspire good notes.
          Nick, you’re still getting my vote of confidence, pal.
          You know were to send the next big swing. :-)

    • ElectricDreamer

      TUESDAY’S GONE —
      I never read Goodbye Gene, but heard good things.

      P. 4 The writer can turn a phrase, but man this is cartoonishly SHRILL stuff.
      Everything’s pretty much pegged to eleven from the get go.
      Where else is there to go from here?
      It’s a style choice, just not sure it’s endearing me to the story yet.

      P. 5 I don’t get how Tuesday threw that hammer through the window.
      Was she driving parallel in her Mom Tank? That would be obvious.
      There should be a beat of prose to explain this, if that’s the case.
      As written, your flashy action beat confused me right out of the scene.

      P. 6 The baby’s matching ski mask is funny. Cute visual.
      You see, that tidbit sparked a scene in my imagination.
      I could see Tuesday knitting everything herself. Tells me a story.
      Please give me more weird but still motherly beats like this.

      P. 10 The girls’ dialogue could use some character dynamics.
      I get that how both girls feel about Tuesday.
      But what’s lacking in the scene is how they feel about EACH OTHER.
      For instance, I knew how the friendship of the girls in GHOST WORLD worked.

      As in, I don’t get the hierarchy or dynamics of this friendship here.
      Who’s the leader? Who’s the poser? Who’s the closet case/extrovert?
      “This is the End” does a great job of establishing how friends relate.
      Check it out and find a way to ground your snappy chatter in some humanity.

      P. 11 Shouldn’t Wynn want to trash Tuesday? She hates her.
      She can get school credit for defaming someone Wynn loathes.
      I think she might be a little more enthusiastic about her petty mission.
      You set up the vitriol, but then Wynn sputters instead of relishes the evil.
      Consider making how Wynn knows Tuesday some kind of personal connection.
      You leave that highly conflict-raising fact on the floor. Bad call author.

      P. 13 Someone likes to name ancillary characters after filmmakers?
      John Carpenter did it too: Cronenberg & Romero are “in” Escape from NY.
      Cool that “Black & Dekker” are back in the news for a Predator flick.
      Hmm let’s see… John Waters & Leslie Bohem in there too? :-P

      P. 16 And we’ve gone full speed ahead with the meta-movie shenanigans.
      To be honest, it’s hard for me to get invested in tales like this.
      They tend to throw characters into blenders for the sake of a meta-chuckle.

      P. 20 I’m stopping here. Your female duo seem to be the feature attraction.
      Seems that your logline is for some other script. That doesn’t help at all.
      The bumbling screenwriters, I mean cops, clunk something fierce for me.
      The script’s better at skillfully arranged bells and whistles than narrative thrust.
      Find a way to tighten up the conflict by de-randomizing the girls.
      Good writing, but I’d like to see the author portray more human behavior.

      CONSIDER WITH REVISIONS

  • http://propagandery.tumblr.com propagandery

    Big Bear! Big Bear! Big Bear! seems like it could be a classic thriller in the vein of Arlington Road, also a Nicholl favorite back in the day.

  • Craig Mack

    Ill go THE HARVESTER followed by Tuesdays Gone.

    Good job everyone.

    • Nick Morris

      Thanks, Craig!

  • ElectricDreamer

    Ahh, he wrote my favorite Andrew Dice Clay flick.
    Well, since JW helmed SERIAL MOM, that’s where my brain went.
    But yeah, being a script more about the girls, Heathers fits better. :-)

  • gazrow

    “I wasn’t trying to cheat, I thought anyone who got up on AOW would encourage friends to check out the page.”

    That’s fair enough. You’re not the first person to do that and I dare say you won’t be the last. Though I’m sure you can see if you were to win AOW because lots of your friends voted for your script then that would be wrong.

    Because some of the posts supporting your script sounded very similar: “Best AoW I’ve ever read” – “Best sci-fi script I’ve read in years” I did wonder if you were using multiple accounts to bolster your vote. Hence, my “blatant cheating” comment.

    I take your point that some of the long time commenters were gushing as well. I read some of your pages and liked your writing. I think your script is good enough to stand on its own two feet.

    If you miss out on the AF spot this time – my advice would be to stick around – don’t be a drive-by. Use the notes you got already to tweak the script and resubmit as a COMEBACK SCRIPT much like the writer of The Harvester has done.

    • Kirk Diggler

      Exactly Gaz. Don’t be a drive-by. There are plenty of people who come here with their script looking for free notes and then are never heard from again.

      As for encouraging friends to come to AOW to vote for a certain script and then feigning shock as to the possibility that it would be very unsporting to do so…. spare me.

  • Bifferspice

    Hey Rachel, I wanted to thank you for your review of my screenplay the other week. if you ever want the favour returned, please drop me an email :) (bifferspice at yahoo dot co dot uk)

  • cronenbergmorty

    thanks for the in depth notes! those are very helpful. I’ve tried to differentiate mine from those scripts while still paying homage to my favorites, like Ghost in the Shell, Blade Runner, Frankenstein.

    glad you appreciate the theme and also that you think there’s more space for development with the human identity themes.

    do hope you come back and finish the script! think you’ll like where it goes.

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks, man!

  • jw

    What I find interesting in the feedback here is that the over-arcing genre of the script itself largely impacts how it is reviewed. Tuesday’s Gone is the best written script here, in terms of a script that reads like a “professional” script, but it’s not going to get the votes because of the genre. Carson’s take on why Transformers cracks $100M could be better summed up by this very premise — GENRE. The genre’s promoted on this site in particular skew heavy in one direction and that means anyone else sending in a script to be reviewed that does not cater to that genre is likely not to even be noticed. It is what it is, just like Transformers, but I don’t find it helpful to other writers. Writing is writing, regardless of the genre and I think it should be judged as such. First 5 pages of most of these scripts IMMEDIATELY tells the reader that it’s not written by a professional writer. Just like Carson’s comments about “the masses” following the herd to Transformers, it is much the same around here, so it shouldn’t be of any surprise, especially from the person running the site.

    • jamesbrownband

      it’s not necessarily about genre, I mean you can sell any genre. It’s more about concept that I think you have a point on. Tuesday’s Gone was the most pro writing of the ones I checked out, but I just don’t know if it will ever be more than an impressive screenplay.

      most of the other concepts sound similar enough to movies that come out regularly that they could (if the execution is there) be real movies one day.

      • jw

        The issue with that, like most things in society today, is WHO gets to be the judge of that? Who defines the difference between an “impressive” screenplay and something that becomes a film? I had an industry friend send me Prisoners long before it was ever shot and I thought it was fuckin stupid. Then I saw it when it came out and it was equally stupid, so if I was making the decision there would have been so many things I’d change about it, but the stars that read it and hopped on the bandwagon went with it, so what some felt was an “impressive” screenplay then became a film. In terms of “what is easier to get made” yes, genre has everything to do with that. The Purge is a perfect example. What a horrible film that made a crap ton of money (and spawned a sequel) because of the genre and the pull it had with small budget horror audiences. It is a lot of timing, as they say.

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks for taking a look at THE HARVESTER.

  • jamesbrownband

    I agree, Tuesday’s Gone was very professional, just not sold on the premise. Maybe a little more character work with the protag n it’ll function. Gotta say tho, the prose was excellent and the dialogue even better. I genuinely laughed out loud, which never happens when I’m reading! Adam sounds good. Will check out tonight.

    • Casper Chris

      I genuinely laughed out loud, which never happens when I’m reading!

      Same. I was surprised at catching myself repeatedly laughing or chuckling out loud. Can’t remember the last time that happened.

  • Casper Chris

    Tuesday’s Gone for me. I think it’s about time we had another comedy review.

    The concept of this script is utterly ridiculous, but it made me laugh. I imagined the Facebook Mom as an over-the-top Annie Wilkes.

  • Nick Morris

    Definitely! I’d love if you’d read on and please have a look at my comments to Bifferspice below with regards to theme. Thanks, Adam!

  • Nick Morris

    “What happens when our desire for control takes control over us? And, in the end, does it even matter?”

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks for checking out THE HARVESTER.

  • Kirk Diggler

    Tuesday’s Gone – my vote

    Elijah Wood: “I play a young Southern Detective, named Jett Cozby, who lives on the edge-”

    It keeps making me laugh. No easy feat for any writer. Yes it’s a little absurd, but I’m laughing so I don’t care. It’s got the best chance of nabbing Carson’s attention and a possible worth the read.

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks, man. Hope you do read on!

    • jamesbrownband

      I will tonight! have it ready to go after work. I’ll keep going and see how far I get. I’ll let you know my thoughts afterword.

  • Nick Morris

    Thanks, man. Interesting stuff to ponder going forward. Really appreciate the read and the insights!
    m/,

  • ElectricDreamer

    Seen Dose of Reality, keep up the good work!

  • jamesbrownband

    so I was planning on reading some more, but I ended up fnishing it last night. bored at work so I’ll let you know some more thoughts.

    what a third act! Felt hints of the matrix in there too, like Zero said. I’ve never seen anything like it, so good on you.

    however, I think you have maybe one too many sequences in the 2nd act. I think you need to get to your midpoint (where Adam takes the Woman to Northshire) about 10 pages sooner. You really surprised me with this section! but I’ll be honest I was getting a bit fatigued with all the mysteries. you weren’t giving us enough in the second act. Right now you’re at 110, you need it to get down to 100. The second act does drag before we get to Northshire. Maybe combine the hospital/Thin Man info dump sequence into the one with Dana helping for an underground Doctor. I don’t know, it just seems like it takes too many stops along the way. stay focused. the gladiator scene was cool and I like how you are developing him as accepting of violence just to fit in, but it’s like 4 or 5 pages out of the script on what’s really just an action scene roadblock.

    there is still a LOT of description. It’s a very dense read, almost novel like. I found it highly entertaining, but that was in spite of how much description there is. You keep telling us the same stuff. Hologram ads, towering buildings. We get it. I guess you want to emphasize setting, but you are going to offput some script readers with how thick these pagers are. you need more white space. like a lot more.

    Gabriel’s arc isn’t fully dealt with. you have a beginning and an end, but not a middle. It feels sorta like you know you needed one of your villains to arc so you just forced it in there. It is salvageable though.

    One problem I had is that all the characters sound the same. Ferraira uses big words, but it’s very obvious that you just padded his dialogue as much as possible. Adam starts with a very unique way of talking, he’s still learning the language which was great, but at some point his leaning curve is sort of abandoned and he just sounds like everyone else. go through and focus on selling us on his dialogue. differentiate every voice more.

    the last 40 pages or so are excellent. you have a strong build up and like I said, a stunning climax. I loved the ending too, though I don’t know if studios will like at as much as script readers.

    summary:
    I think this is a very strong sci-fi spec. You have the basis for something truly great here. But it’s all a bit clumsy. I think you need atleast one more serious rewrite, with some pro notes plus AOW and you could get the problems hammered out. Seriously stick with this script though because there are a TON of great ideas in it.