Genre: Sci-fi
Premise: In the far off future, humans live in a “utopia” where there is no hate, no fear, no sadness, and most prominently, no knowledge of human kind’s history. When a young boy discovers the shocking truth about that history, he knows he must escape the community.
About: The Giver was a book published back in 1993 and quickly broke out as one of the most popular dystopian novels ever written. It eventually made its way onto school reading lists. The adaptation I’m reviewing was written back in 2004 by Todd Alcott, who wrote the animated movie, Antz. However, since then, the script has obviously been rewritten a few times, and is now credited to Michael Mitnick (who looks freakishly like Ferris Bueller. Look him up!). I believe the film is almost done shooting, and has a fancy cast that includes Alexander Skarsgard, Meryl Streep, Taylor Swift, Jeff Bridges, and Katie Holmes. The film comes out in August of next year. “Salt” director Phillip Noyce directed.
Writer: Todd Alcott (based on the book by Lois Lowry)
Details: 118 pages – 12-14-04 (listed as “final” draft)

The_Giver_Poster_FINAL1

So after hearing 3 separate people over the past year tell me that The Giver was a great script (and 2 OTHER people tell me it was one of their favorite books growing up), I finally decided to take a whack at it (get it? “take?” Cause like, it’s called “The Giver?” Mm-hmm, good right?)

Truth be told, it’s the old “bad title bug” that keep me from chomping on this piece of script celery. The Giver?? It sounds like a depressing Western where a Silas Marner like character, homeless and half-clothed, offers kind favors to passerbys. Ugh, shrug, no thanks Doug. I want to read something called GOOD scripts. GOOOOO-OOOOO-OOOO-DDDD. Good scripts.

Shows you how important a title is. The wrong one makes readers run like Panama Canal workers from mosquitos. Of course, this WAS a novel adaptation, so they were kind of stuck with what they were given (get it? Because “The Giver” and then I just said… oh forget it). But if you’re writing a sci-fi spec, make sure you title it something a little more sci-fi sounding.

So is The Giver as good as the praise it’s been given? Or am I going to GIVE it a failing grade? Only one way to find out. Join me in my Scriptshadow time machine so we can travel faaaar off into the future, into the world of… The Giver.

Jonas is a 12 year old boy who’s a little brighter than the rest of the kids. More astute, I’d say. Jonas lives in a future town of 3500 people, and boy is this town rad. First of all, no cars! That’s because there are no streets. Everyone rides around on bicycles and wears trendy clothes and enjoys each other’s company and seems genuinely happy with life.

There are some negatives. Nobody ever questions anything. Nobody’s allowed to go outside the town. Nobody’s allowed to lie. And there’s hardly any color in this world. It’s like everything is muted. Oh, and your job is chosen for you.

That’s right. In fact, as the story begins, a ceremony is coming up where all the 12 year olds (12 is the last year of childhood in this community) will be told what they’re doing for the rest of their lives. So they all go, and out of the 50 twelve year-olds, Jonas watches patiently as his friends go one by one and get jobs like “fisherman” and “helping the elderly” and “director of recreation.” But when it’s Jonas’s turn… he’s PASSED OVER.

This draws a concerned muttering from the crowd and naturally, Jonas is freaked out. Finally, after all the twelves have been designated, Jonas is called up. His job will be “The Receiver Of Memory,” a job that is only given once in a blue moon. And it appears to be bad. Because Jonas’s family is FREAKING OUT.

Jonas heads home, but now everybody treats him like he has West Nile Virus (I don’t know what my obsession with mosquito-transmitted diseases is in this review – honest). Nobody’s too fond of this Receiver of Memory crap. Even his parents look at him weird. So the next day, Jonas meets with the current Receiver of Memory, an old man whose job it is to pass on all the memories of the world’s history before he dies (he’s our “Giver”). You see, the Receiver of Memory is the only one who knows what human kind’s past really was.

And so he begins telling Jonas about cars and sleds and Paris, as well as violence and murder and wars. Jonas learns it all. He’s both horrified and fascinated. But it’s when he learns about death – specifically the way in which death is secretly administered in the community – that he really changes. This is not a place Jonas wants to grow up. Which is why he decides to get out. But will he make it before they find out his plan? And what will happen if they stop him? What will be Jonas’s fate?

You know, I’m starting to understand the appeal of adapting these young adult novels to film. They’re relatively breezy in terms of plot and concept, making them ideal for the limited space that is a movie script. The more “adult” novels tend to be complex and heavy, and when you have a lot of layers (a lot of complexity), that’s hard to fit into 120 pages.

I will say I’m getting a teensy bit worried about all these dystopian movies hitting the circuit, though. When you read enough of them, they all start to blend together. But The Giver is good. What I liked about it was how it established its world. From the number of people (3500) to the geography (the town’s boundaries are laid out nicely) to the way people dress, to the way people learn, to the way people work – I got a great sense of this community right away. And that’s something I rarely see in amateur sci-fi scripts, where the worlds and boundaries all feel like they were conceived during an early morning Denny’s breakfast after a night of drinking (“Yo dude, check it out.  What if everyone, like, has a third ear??”  ”Yeah man!  But then, ironically, they’re all deaf.”  ”Yeah!!!  Brilliant dude!  Hey stewardess!  Another round of pancakes!  Future millionaires in the house!”)

I loved the way the opening act built. This is something I don’t talk about much, but you want your story to always build. You want to feel like everything’s getting bigger, heavier, more complex and harder. I read too many scripts where we just stay at that flat level the whole way through, and when you do that, the read gets boring.

It started with this mysterious community, continued with Jonas seeing strange things the other kids couldn’t see, and moved on to a mysterious old man who would watch Jonas at school. We then get the shock of him not being picked at the ceremony. The reveal of his unique job. How that job changes the way the town perceives him. The mystery of earth’s history. The mystery of what happened to the previous Receiver of Memories. And it just kept going from there. It never slowed down.

All this reminded me of the importance of the mystery box. I know some of you guys hate JJ and his mystery box. But it really works when it’s done well. And here, it’s used perfectly. This thread of “What happened to the last Receiver?” is powerful enough (we wonder, if it happened to the one before, will it happen to our hero? And a script is always more exciting when you think your main character may be in danger) to keep the pages turning. It’s a prime story engine.

Having said that, I moist sointantly have some questions. Let me ask you guys something? Would you want to live in blissful ignorance in The Matrix? Or would you like to be released and live in the “real world?” Because when I saw what the “real world” was like in those Matrix sequels, I wanted to stay in the damn Matrix! I am perfectly fine living in a pretend world if I don’t know it’s pretend. Sign me up.

And with The Giver, I kept asking the same question. Is this community that bad? I mean, everyone seems to get along. Everyone’s happy. People don’t ask questions about things but that’s because everyone knows they’ve got it good. I mean there’s no war. No hate. No fighting.

So what is it, exactly, that we’re running away from in The Giver? Free will? Choice? I mean, yeah, those things are important, obviously. But The Giver makes too good of an argument for its utopian community. Everybody is really freaking happy. I can count the people in my life who are happy on one hand! So I ask it again: What’s so bad about this society here?

Now yes, (spoiler) there is a baby killing scene. I am not for killing babies. But can’t Jonas focus on maybe amending that little policy rather than run away? He’d do a lot more good. And you know what The Giver was missing? A villain. It needed a big fat villain because we needed someone to represent the corruption of the system, someone who used it for his own gain. We needed EVIL. Like I said, beside baby-killing moment, there really wasn’t anything that bad about this place.

Of course, just the fact that The Giver is making me think about all this stuff is great. It’s breaking that elusive “5th Wall” (the 5th Wall is the wall that makes the reader actually place themselves in your story and ask what they’d do). And once you have your reader doing that, you’re golden, baby. You’re screenplay golden.

So yeah, this script is good. It just has a few anomalies here and there. I’m eager to find out what they changed in the shooting draft. Id’ be shocked if they didn’t add a bigger villain. I’ll definitely see this when it comes out.

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

What I learned: You want your story to build. That includes, but is not limited to a) throwing bigger and bigger obstacles at your hero over the course of the script, b) a number of revelations/surprises that also increase in importance as the script goes on, and c) upping the stakes as the script goes on. The stakes for your hero on page 90 should be much higher than they were on page 45, which should be much higher than they were on page 10.

  • klmn

    Who’s that old bastard on the poster? He looks like Si from Duck Dynasty. What could he give you but some old shot-up duck?

    • carsonreeves1

      I’m hoping it’s The Giver, cause if it isn’t, we’re all in trouble.

  • klmn

    You joke about West Nile Virus, but I gotta tell you it’s no laughing matter. I had it and for about a week I was walking like an Egyptian.

    But seriously, folks…

    • BSBurton

      Nailed it!! When’s your stand up DVD coming out?

      • klmn

        Never done stand up. Just a wannabe writer.

        • BSBurton

          Keep at it! What have you been working on lately?

          • klmn

            Just “finished” a black comedy. Early reaction is that it’s not finished. I think I’ll put it away for awhile and work on other things.

            I’ve been researching a true story but a screenplay is maybe a year away. I might move away from comedy- I think it might be the toughest genre- you have to do all the character stuff and structure stuff and be funny too.

            What are you working on?

          • BSBurton

            I completely agree, I’m still struggling on a comedy that’s been through about eight drafts. I’m also working on two sci-fi thrillers, a horror short, and a crime thriller. In addition to that, I also score music for films. :)

          • klmn

            I’d like to hear some of your music. Do you have any sound files or videos on the web?

          • BSBurton

            Thanks for your interest! I’ve got a drop box account. What’s your email? I’ll send you private links when I get home.

          • klmn

            kenklmn AT yahoo dotcom

          • BSBurton

            Thanks, I’ll send them soon. How did you outline your comedy? Story before jokes or did you write the jokes and make the story fit them?

          • klmn

            I started with character first. One thing I’ve heard from my limited contact with producers is that audiences want to follow one character the whole way.

          • drifting in space

            With great characters and a good story, humor can be extracted without a ton of jokes. Unless what I’m writing now is just complete garbage, LOL.

          • klmn

            That’s true. The trick is writing great characters and good story. Good luck with your script.

          • BSBurton

            Is your central character zany? Kleptomaniac? Lol

          • klmn

            No. I’ll tell you more when I get your music links.

          • klmn

            Somehow I posted twice. Ignore this one.

  • tom8883

    Exactly, Carson. When I read the first part of the premise I started feeling like this might be a hopeful movie. “No hate, no fear, no sadness”. Movies which explore deep, complex truths are different than movies which let us escape into an ideal world we want to believe can exist. Especially these days, I’d say the latter is much more commercial.

  • Paul Clarke

    Sounds like a young-adult safe version of Demolition Man. A great concept. Demolition Man is one of the few movies that could actually benefit from a remake. The tone used was just too campy. A gritty updated version would be great. In the age of push-button parking, and gluten free soy-latte’s the premise is even more valid.

    As for the Matrix. I’d rather live in the real world, not matter how horrible. It’s just a matter of curiosity.

    • charliesb

      Agreed about Demolition Man, except Hollywood doesn’t really know how to do gritty, profitable and good all at once. Maybe AMC?

    • wlubake

      You don’t know how the three sea shells work?

  • nawazm10

    SPOILERS

    I think I might be that one guy that’s pestered you about this script forever, sorry! Really glad you read it, and most importantly, that you enjoyed it. One of my favourite scripts, would easily be in my top 10. The whole world building, the fact that nobody even bats an eye at how much of a shallow life they’re living and how it makes the reader feel while watching these characters. It’s just great storytelling, both in the book and the script.

    I had to read the book in high school and I remember being entranced. Loved it then, and love it now. The baby killing scene was pretty controversial, a few states and countries have (had?) banned the book from the school curriculum. But I think the scene really did show you the extent of how much these people are lost. It might be confronting but it gets the message across.

    When I first read the book, I actually thought long and hard about the community and how it works. Yes, the whole community is living a perfect existence but only because they’ve trapped themselves in this bubble. They’re not aware, it’s a similar concept to the matrix – except errr they’re not being harvested for energy. I came to the conclusion that I would rather live in a world with emotion, pain and hardship, but also with real happiness, families, love, dreams. There was this big subplot in the book, and it’s been a while since I’ve read the script, but I don’t remember it being in it, although I remember the father trying to sing some kind of tune. Anyway, it was about experiencing music, how strong of an emotional presence music actually has in our lives. Everybody likes music! And then it’s just gone, thrown away. Everything that one can enjoy is compressed into the void of a memory which only one person holds.

    But I do agree that a lack of villain might annoy the mainstream crowd of film goers. I’m very sure they won’t put one in there, it’s just a tough job considering what the script deals with. Which kind of reminds me of another problem I had with the script. The tension refuses to escalate between a certain point, we feel as if Jonas is in danger but in reality, he isn’t. And he never will be. Nobody is in danger really. It has stakes but not ones which could carry the script. Everything is more long term.

    But besides that, I thought this was great. Loved every page of it. Definitely a script I’d recommend.

  • charliesb

    Re: The Matrix – Isn’t that actually the point? Knowledge and awareness
    change you. If you didn’t know the Matrix existed, then you’d be
    content (or some sort of content). As I’m assuming all the other 3498 people in this town are.
    But if you were given a choice to have a “truth” revealed to you that
    would change your perception of what it means to be content would you
    take it? And if you said yes, how would knowing that “truth” change
    you?

    I haven’t read the book, but I’m assuming that once Jonas learns
    about earth’s history from the Giver, he can’t choose to be content with
    the muted utopian world he grew up in. Much like everyone who “woke up” in the Matrix.

  • jlugozjr

    Given the opportunity, I would definitely choose to stay in the Matrix.

    A chance to live like The Merovingian… I’m all in.

  • gazrow

    Read this one fairly recently. Have to say I really liked it! What struck me, was how well the writer managed to inject a sense of foreboding right from the very beginning. Even when everything seemed perfect in this world, there was always a vague feeling all was not quite right.

    One other thing that struck me, was how screenwriting styles have changed in the last ten years. This script was pretty dense, with some action paragraphs taking up a whopping 12 lines! Truth be told, it was a bit of a slog to get through, but an enjoyable read none the less!

    Looking forward to watching this one!

  • Alex Palmer

    I would live in the matrix. It’s the idea of solipsism, isn’t it? Nothing in reality is irrefutable except yourself. Who’s to say the matrix Neo wakes up from is actually another false reality?

  • JWF

    I enjoyed the script and it was a quick read for 119 pages. To answer your question about why their utopia was so bad…

    (SPOILERS)

    they didn’t have love – I mean that scene where he asks his parents if they love him and all they do is laugh and tell him it was an obsolete word! I felt the kids pain!

    That was what was so bad about the world they had constructed – once he knew what love was how could he not try and give it to everyone else?

  • Wes Mantooth

    “But it’s when he learns about death – specifically the way in which death is secretly administered in the community – that he really changes. This is not a place Jonas wants to grow up. Which is why he decides to get out.” This sounds exactly like a junior version of Logan’s Run. Remake supposedly coming soon.

  • jigglypuff

    And “The villian” is the fact they live in a colorless world with no emotion stronger than “oh, I hope I do my job well” and there are no relationships based on love and they kill off babies cause they’re a bit underweight? That’s not utopia, that’s a world full of robots.

  • ThomasBrownen

    I remember quite clearly when I read this book. My mom had bought it and stashed it away on a bookcase because she had heard that it was a good book and was always encouraging us to read good literature. But then one day, a friend of my mom’s was talking to her about The Giver, and how she had just read it with her kids, and they all incredibly shocked by what it was about. My mom’s friend meant that as a warning, but I immediately went and read the book. Youthful rebellion, and all that…

    It started out good, and got better. It was an easy read, then WHOA. Suicide. Euthanasia. Infanticide. It’s all in there. In a “kids” book!

    One of things I think is most memorable about the book is that it’s a kids book dealing with adult issues. And there’s a sort of irony in that juxtaposition that makes murder seem more shocking when compared to the innocence of children. A Brave New World, for example, is similar (what would it be like to live in a world without Shakespeare??), but there’s such a grittiness in that story, that the drugged-up-on-soma world always struck me as being somewhat more attractive than Huxley would have liked.

    The good news is that the script sticks close to the book. Any calls for a bigger villain, etc., are misguided and a distraction to the story. The mysteries are enough to pull the reader in, and the reveal is shocking enough to be memorably disturbing. And the villain isn’t just infanticide, but having to live in a world without love or meaningful family. Movies have explored these issues before with bigger villains (Equilibrium for the action lovers; The Lives of Others for history lovers; etc.), but this story is distinctive in the way it approaches the issue with childish innocence. And that makes it all the more compelling.

    I don’t know why it took so long to make a movie from the book. I suspect that the success of The Hunger Games helped. I mean, The Hunger Games has kids killing each other, so what’s a little infanticide on top of that? The difference between this story and The Hunger Games, though, is that this deals with big issues (Is it better to enjoy life with the pain that comes along with such freedom?), while The Hunger Games doesn’t seem to get quite as deep.

    Anyhow, this remains one of my favorite books, and if they stick to the book (which it looks like they’re planning on doing!) it could be a great movie.

    • Fistacuffs

      Think you can send me a copy of the script? I remember reading this book back in grade school as well. One of my favourites! sucram2@hotmail.com

  • carsonreeves1

    I could be 1 and it would still irk me.

    • wlubake

      Seems to me that “The Receiver of Memory” has more of that Sci Fi feel. Guess it didn’t hurt the book, though.

      • ximan

        Or just “The Receiver.”

      • Midnight Luck

        I like “The Twelves” or “The 12′s” since the other looks like we are talking about elves.

    • ximan

      I know right. It’s like that Mark Romanek sci-fi film “Never Let Me Go.” What does that title have to do with cloning humans for organs?

      (Loved the film, BTW).

      • Kirk Diggler

        Did you read the book? The title comes from a song from a fictional singer that one of the character likes. But beyond that, I would say the title can allude to the fact that the “donors” give a part of themselves away to people who need it, until there is nothing left to give and they die. I find the title haunting in this sense.

  • drifting in space

    So it’s a darker version of Idiocracy?

  • jridge32

    I found the first 10 pages of this to be overwritten. Makes sense that it would be prosy, based on a novel (I guess), but still..

  • fragglewriter

    I liked living in the Matrix’s pretend world cause I loved the fight sequences LOL

    So you’re not for killing babies on screen but if an old person gets kidnapped (or worse) it’s no big deal? I think it all depends on how the killing takes place and if it is shown on scene or just talked about. I’m thinking once they get to filming the movie, in editing, they’ll probably work something out.

  • Citizen M

    They’re shooting here in Cape Town. Read Katie Holmes’ Twitter feed. with pics.

    Can’t get over how beautiful it is here in South Africa.

    Loving South Africa. Me with a zebra

    • gazrow

      And I can’t get over how beautiful Katie Holmes is!! :)

      • Kirk Diggler

        She has ugly feet though.

        • klmn

          Umm. Who cares?

          • Kirk Diggler

            The person who told me this seemed to care quite a bit.

          • gazrow

            Only because he or she is a chiropodist! Katie’s amazing eyes more than make up for her ugly feet!! – And no, I’m not an optician!! Lol.

          • BSBurton

            Where did you learn that term?

          • gazrow

            Which term? lol

          • BSBurton

            Chiropodist lol. I was unaware

          • gazrow

            Ah, right! I’m guessing you’re not a Brit?! It’s fairly common here in the UK. :)

          • BSBurton

            No, I wish I was! In from KY in the US. I love English music though. I’ve seen Snow Partol 3 times, Coldplay 4, Richard Ashcroft, The Vaccines, Keane, Ed Sheehan, and Paul McCartney. :). And I know you call band aids plasters lol.

          • gazrow

            Yep! And cell phones mobiles! :)

          • BSBurton

            You live near London ?

          • gazrow

            No – In the North. In between Manchester and Liverpool. By the way, you forgot to mention One Direction on your list of favorite English musicians! lol

          • BSBurton

            I’d rather watch Emma Watson in a bathtub than listen to them… Of course, that probably goes for any of The aforementioned acts. How’s the weather in those parts? Are you a fan of the BBC’s Sherlock?

          • gazrow

            Weather’s wet and miserable. Not really a fan of Sherlock – Think his character’s far to brilliant to be totally believable. Much prefer Dexter – shame it’s finished!

          • BSBurton

            I was Dexter for Halloween lol, had the kill shirt and everything. The first 4 years were the best. The finale was so strange and rushed. I do miss it though.

          • gazrow

            Lol Dexter for Halloween. Have to say Jennifer Carpenter’s character was my favorite! I really miss Debra Morgan AND her filthy mouth! :)

  • kevin thomas

    Could someone email me the script by chance?

    Email: kevthomz@gmail.com

    I’ve got the script for Nolan’s ‘Interstellar’ if you’d be willing to trade for this. Thanks in advance.

  • Andrew Mullen

    I can tell you one thing they changed. They aged up the main character from 12 to 19-20. The guy playing Jonas is 24.

    Expect lots of gratuitous shots of him shirtless for no reason.

    • Trek

      Now that is just unfortunate. Why Hollywood thinks a young actor can’t genuinely carry a blockbuster is beyond me. Here’s hoping The Book Thief puts them in their place when it hits later this month.

    • hickoryduck

      Actually I’m pretty sure the character will be 15/16. Lois Lowry herself addressed it and said they aged the character up to make some of the bigger action more believable.

    • K.B. Houston

      Thank god. I’m getting real tired of these 10-16 year-old-kids who just so happen to be the most precocious freaking little bastards of all time!!! Seriously. Am I the only one who’s bothered by this? It’s one thing to suspend your sense of reality in a film, but when we’ve seen one after another where the hero is a kid who would NEVER be able to be that mature/intelligent/witty/everything, it just gets old.

  • Trek

    Crap young adult fiction? I find it to be a disservice when people call The Hunger Games YA fiction simply because it doesn’t conform to the mold of most YA fiction (unless they’ve read it and genuinely didn’t like it, that is).

    If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend you do and judge for yourself. It has very strong characters and plot, which is why it appeals to a much broader audience than the real YA crap that’s also being produced.

    • hickoryduck

      Actually yes, I’ve read the entire series. It’s terrible and it gives a bad name to “young adult” books. The only serviceable one was the first book (which made an atrocious movie), and they went drastically downhill after that.

      • Kirk Diggler

        I’ve read the entire series too. Why did you read all three books if it sucked so bad? I read them as entertainment, nothing more. A strong central female character was also a plus. But bad? Fluff maybe, but very readable fluff.

        • drifting in space

          They are good books. They might not last centuries but as far as entertainment, yeah, Kirk is right.

  • klmn

    Who villain truly is?

    Are you Jar Jar?

  • ff

    Sounds like 12 movies we’ve already seen.

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

    Somebody is having fun trolling the comments section with the powerful little down-vote button today….

    • drifting in space

      Almost everything I write gets down-voted. It’s ridiculous it won’t display who it is.

      COWARDS!!!!!! Haha.

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

        Not just you, man. Every single post on here has been down-voted today.

        • Mike.H

          It must be Scriptshadow’s once feeble competitor Scriptbreaker who’s gone defunct in less than six months sans of reader participation.

        • gazrow

          Same thing happened the last AOW. Some sad little person obviously hasn’t gotten anything better to do!

      • gazrow

        Hey – Don’t call me a coward!! Oops…

      • BSBurton

        You should fight back. Quick, turn on the bat signal!

    • Mike.H

      I noticed that.

      I know it’s not Grendl. He’s mellowed through the years with calmer, gentler effect. He switched to better scotch would be my educated guess.

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

        Moved up from Johnnie Walker Red to Johnnie Walker Gold

        • Mike.H

          if so, then he’d have no money$$$ left for toilet paper.

          So, at the grocer, when asked paper or plastic… [ do I even need to type the answer, my fellow SS readers...? ] :)

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

            Fine. Johnnie Walker Black. Now he can afford TP.

          • drifting in space

            Just go at work and/or Starbucks. Problem solved.

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

            When I lived out of my car I just went to the library, or the park, or Starbucks. Plenty of options, I never bought any TP… had plenty of Jim Beam though ;-)

          • drifting in space

            I hear ya. Back in the day I did whatever I could to avoid buying any sort of toiletries.

  • UrbaneGhoul

    I think I’d watch your version of The Giver. Maybe he trades his knowledge for favors as he hitchhikes while getting depressed over all the suffering in the world. This sounds interesting I guess. They cast Meryl Streep as Chief Elder, so she must be evil. I don’t know the character but she has to be cold, unfeeling and, well, evil.

    • hickoryduck

      The Chief Elder is literally only in one scene in the book. She just announces stuff at a ceremony. I have no idea if they beefed up the role for Streep, or if it’s the same and she just did it anyway.

  • Mike.H

    Carson, I noticed in the home page banner, you no longer seek “Scripts I”m looking for, please send” PDF’s you wish to read…?

  • drifting in space

    Not related: Does anyone have a copy of “Going the Distance” by Geoff LaTulippe?

    Send to: driftinginscripts at gmail dot com

    Thanks!

  • Writer451

    I am wondering if people who’ve read the book will be bored with all the mystery and (what appears to be) a long setup since we know who the creepy old man watching him is and what’s going to happen. The few who managed to escape reading this book as a child may enjoy the suspense.

  • lesbiancannibal

    Do you think Sci-Fi is dead as a creative genre? I mean every logline starts with “Set in a dystopian future” – now and again that’s replaced by Utopian but we all know it’s really a dystopia. I understand the man v environment element, but it should be the genre of original ideas.

    What’s the most recent truly original sci-fi idea do you think?

    Also, no-one seems to be really trying to predict the future, save for hologramatic screens you operate by touch. yawn. Even the Matrix ripped of Red Dwarf’s Better Than Life although probably not intentionally. Johnny Depp’s upcoming film about The Singularity looks interesting.

    • Montana Gillis

      I thought Oblivion was a great script read for recent sci-fi. Recent, as in the movie came out this year (I think) and I didn’t go see it because I was spending every spare moment re-writing and gave myself the excuse that I would catch it on Blu-Ray when it came out although I’m not sure it has yet, can you say run-on sentence?

      • lesbiancannibal

        hardly original though – it actually angered me in the cinema how derivative it was.

        We’ll take a bit of Solaris, bit of Moon, The Island, Blade Runner and everything else, the ending from Independence Day…

        I love sci-fi but I want more. I’m still reeling from Elysium.

        • drifting in space

          Ugh. Elysium. Fun movie lacking substance.

          • Kirk Diggler

            Actually, after awhile I didn’t think it was much fun either. Not very well thought out. Sharlto Copley, so good in District 9, was just chewing the scenery down to nubs. And the message and ending was pure treacle.

          • drifting in space

            I guess, yeah. I was hoping more to come from the bad-ass suit he got. Not even that saved it.

  • Montana Gillis

    Okay, I read to page 30 and then checked out. Well written pro script with believable characters but I thought it was a yawner of a story. Not my cup of tea.

  • Thunk24

    I’ve only just started reading this so can’t pass judgment on the story yet. What I did immediately notice was how wordy it is. That might sound petty but I just read Monster Problems and what a beautifully succinct, descriptive and economic piece of writing that is, just saying.

    • drifting in space

      You can say so much more with less. I’d rather be given a general idea so I can imagine the world I’m in, rather than be told exactly what I’m looking at.

      • Thunk24

        I was just thinking the same thing Drifting. Leave something for my imagination. But, hey, the guy was asked to write it so all power to him!

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