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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short  ›  The Wife's Not Speaking Moderators: bert
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SimplyScripts
Posted: November 10th, 2008, 5:59pm Report to Moderator
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The Wife's Not Speaking by Javier Torregrosa (jayrex) - Short, Drama - Dan and Linda get into an accident.  When the incident is over, Dan is nowhere to be seen. 6 pages - pdf, format


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jayrex
Posted: November 10th, 2008, 6:08pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks Don for posting my short so quickly.

I wrote five loglines and I went with this one.

I hope this script is an improvement on my previous attempts.


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dogglebe
Posted: November 10th, 2008, 11:28pm Report to Moderator
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I liked the story, here, though the dialog hurts it a little.  There's a lot of on-the-nose dialog sprinkled through out it, which makes a conversation between Dan and the bartender seem forced and artificial.

The ending was a nice twist.  It caught me off guard and was very satisfying.


Phil


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An ancient relic disappears.  And Heaven and Hell will fight to get it back.


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BryMo
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 12:31am Report to Moderator
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i laughed some here. I thought Dan was hilarious.

I must be missing something becuase i didn't understand the ending. I must be challenged becuase i need it explained lol. Why is he saying sorry? Was it a flashback?

Guess i'm slow.


Shorts:
Good Golly Miss Molly
No Place Like Home
New Moon Rising
Yuno - BRAND-*SPANKIN*-NEW!
The Ballad of Uncle Sam: An Anarchists Melody
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mcornetto
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 2:21am Report to Moderator
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Hey Javier,

Not bad.  You have a nice little story happening here of a man who imagines he is at a bar while he is unconscious at the side of a river, or perhaps he is in some alcoholic limbo and rather than moving on he goes back to the living.  That is what's happening isn't it?

If so, I think you need to make it a bit clearer.  If it's his imagination maybe he should be bewildered when he first arrives at the bar.  Maybe at the end you can make something surreal happen like the bartender grows a flower on his nose - just to clue us in that it's actually a dream.

If you are going for the limbo thing then you probably need to have more references to it.  Maybe there's a bright light coming out of the bathroom door and Dan keeps saying he really has to go. Something like that. Of course the bartender would be savvy about what's really going on and he helps Dan make the right decision.

Finally, you should tie it all together at the end and make some reference to the bar scene other than I'm sorry to let us know that we understood what you were aiming at.

Overall you did a good job with a few changes it could be excellent.
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NiK
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 2:35am Report to Moderator
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This was a nice little short.

I wouldn't say there was much of a twist. I do think that you need to rewrite a few parts of the script, the dialogue especially.

Overall i really enjoyed it.

Cheers





Gift of Blood - NEW! co-written tonkatough
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stebrown
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 7:46am Report to Moderator
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I thought this was pretty good Javier, especially the descriptions. I found the script to be more of a comedy than a drama though, was that intentional?

I agree with the other comments that the dialogue could be improved. There's many different ways you could take this script so I recommend experimenting with a few different outcomes.

Good stuff


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colkurtz8
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 10:20am Report to Moderator
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Hey Jay

I thought this was a great little piece. I didn't find the dialogue to be too "on the nose" either. Again like anything thats only 5 pages long, more development is needed to flesh out the story properly.

I wouldn't have Dan waking up at the end. The Barman was his good conscience, telling him to do the right thing, ya. And by the end of their conversation Dan knows he has to apologize (that could have been expanded too but again brevity is paramount here) so for me, not allowing Dan to reconcile leaves a greater impression.

The tragedy of him experiencing an epiphany of some sort (or "a moment of clarity" to quote Jules Winfield) but doesn't get a chance to redeem himself would make a powerful ending, just my opinion. Good read, man.

Cheers

Col.


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jayrex
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 2:57pm Report to Moderator
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Wow, alot of comments after the first day.

Thanks for the read Phil, Brymo, Michael, Nik, Ste & Col.


Quoted from dogglebe

The ending was a nice twist.  It caught me off guard and was very satisfying.
Phil


I actually had four possible endings.  I went with the positive ending.

The endings were.  Dan wakes up outside the bar, when Dan returns home, Linda has gone.  Dan wakes up drunk at home to find his bags are packed.  Or goes to the hospital and finds Linda passed away.

I went with Dan unconscience in the water, works out his problems in a dream-like state and comes around with an answer.  But I do like some of the other suggestions posted.


Quoted from Brymo

I must be missing something becuase i didn't understand the ending. I must be challenged becuase i need it explained lol. Why is he saying sorry? Was it a flashback?


Dan is having a little trouble at home.  And the bartender is there to point out what he was doing was wrong.  The crash could be seen as another moment to get upset about with Linda, pointing the finger etc...  Dan was taking the blame and apologising.


Quoted from mcornetto

If so, I think you need to make it a bit clearer.  If it's his imagination maybe he should be bewildered when he first arrives at the bar.  Maybe at the end you can make something surreal happen like the bartender grows a flower on his nose - just to clue us in that it's actually a dream.


I like where you're going with this.  I love surreal.  I might take your lead on this.  I'm more than happy to change the ending as I was toying around with it and I wasn't 100% happy with it.


Quoted from stebrown

I found the script to be more of a comedy than a drama though, was that intentional?


The comedy aspect of the script was intentional.  The surreal idea Michael has given me could be the gem I was looking for to finish this script.


Quoted from colkurtz8

The tragedy of him experiencing an epiphany of some sort (or "a moment of clarity" to quote Jules Winfield) but doesn't get a chance to redeem himself would make a powerful ending, just my opinion. Good read, man.


I agree that this would make for a powerful ending, but I'd like to end on a happy note.  But if people think I should end with an unhappy ending, then I may have to do a rethink.

Thanks to everyone who kindly took the time to read my new script.

Kind regards,


Javier


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tonkatough
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 4:15pm Report to Moderator
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er . . . I don't get it.

A nice read but I didn't have a clue what the story behind story was about with this one.

Yeah I get he had an accident, but did he run all the way to the bar, did he astral project or was it all in his mind. I hope its not the third option cause that's about as much as eye rolling clique as someone wakes up and - Gosh! I'll be darned -it was all just a dream.

Like Brymo said up above, I also must be a bit challenged too.

while the story was ambiguous, your writing was nice and well done.

Oh! and I noticed some great suggestion posted above to improve your script/ Play around with it.  

  


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jayrex
Posted: November 11th, 2008, 4:28pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from tonkatough
...or was it all in his mind. I hope its not the third option cause that's about as much as eye rolling clique as someone wakes up and - Gosh! I'll be darned -it was all just a dream.

while the story was ambiguous, your writing was nice and well done.


Hi Tonkatough,

Thanks for the comments and I will be playing around with this story.  The story isn't the first or second option.  Guess I'm cliqué.  But when I add the surreal angle, I'm hoping for an eye-opener of a finish.

Kind regards,


Javier


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James R
Posted: November 18th, 2008, 2:19pm Report to Moderator
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Not bad, Javier. When I read the opening scene was in Waxy's Silver Treehouse I was expecting some sort of sci-fi story. I wasn't disappointed though!

I like these kind of scripts where all is not as it seems but I think the story needs to be darker. I know you went for your "happy ending" but with a car accident and death being involved I was expecting an unhappy ending. Could just be my opinion.

I liked the exchanges between Dan and the bartender. There could have been more there, though. Are they supposed to be old friends or did Dan create him?

The part about Dan not opening the door seemed off to me. The whole portion about the car accident could be tightened up.

If Linda is the type who is always annoyed with Dan she might have a different reaction when she sees him lying face down in the mud.

Good job.

James


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jayrex
Posted: November 19th, 2008, 2:47pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks for the read James R.


Quoted from James R
Not bad, Javier. When I read the opening scene was in Waxy's Silver Treehouse I was expecting some sort of sci-fi story. I wasn't disappointed though!


I was please with that name and might reuse it elsewhere.  If you're ever in London go to Waxy O'Connors, it's an Irish bar with a massive dead tree inside.


Quoted from James R
I like these kind of scripts where all is not as it seems but I think the story needs to be darker. I know you went for your "happy ending" but with a car accident and death being involved I was expecting an unhappy ending. Could just be my opinion.


Well, with the rewrite when I get around to it.  I might just try a darker routé to take.  I want to add a surreal angle so hopefully a better version.


Quoted from James R
I liked the exchanges between Dan and the bartender. There could have been more there, though. Are they supposed to be old friends or did Dan create him?


They are casual friends.  I'm thinking of changing this scenario.


Quoted from James R
The part about Dan not opening the door seemed off to me.


This was not meant to be realistic.  But as we all know, people who panic can act irrationally.


Quoted from James R
If Linda is the type who is always annoyed with Dan she might have a different reaction when she sees him lying face down in the mud.


Point taken.

Kind regards,


Javier


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JonnyBoy
Posted: November 23rd, 2008, 8:47am Report to Moderator
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Hey Javier, thought that since you replied to my thread I'd start my readin' 'n' reviewin' with your latest.

I liked it, found the dialogue funny, but didn't really...get it? I mean, maybe a shot of the car going into the water at the start would give the bar scene some context, or something. Start with a car hitting the water, then cut to the bar? I don't know.

One little specific thing that niggled me: on page 2, Dan first says, "This time, I think it's kinda my fault", and few seconds later says, "Well it's not my fault this time." Is that intentional? Can he not make up his mind?

I had no problem with the dialogue, unlike some people. But why is Dan dreaming this in the first place? Why is he in a guilty dream if he hasn't ACTUALLY done anything wrong? Unless at the end he did swim out and leave her there. And how come in the middle, dream sequence there's an ambulance and paramedics, but in the real life all the couple get is two fishermen poking them with their rods?

I like the idea, just think it needs more flesh on the bones! Although as I've said before, my entirely amateur opinion may well be entirely wrong.

Finally, some very boring grammar and spelling mistakes:

PAGE 1
- Dan picks up the shot glass and gulps down ITS contents
- DAN: In a MANNER of speaking.

PAGE 4
- BARTENDER: WHY'S she not talking to you?

PAGE 5
- DAN: With what? The CAR'S at the bottom of the river.

Hope some of my comments are useful!


Guess who's back? Back again?
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jayrex
Posted: November 24th, 2008, 2:22pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JonnyBoy
I liked it, found the dialogue funny, but didn't really...get it? I mean, maybe a shot of the car going into the water at the start would give the bar scene some context, or something. Start with a car hitting the water, then cut to the bar? I don't know.


I don't want to give everything away.  If I had a shot of a car going into the water then another scene in a bar and then back at the river.  It would seem odd having the bar scene.


Quoted from JonnyBoy
One little specific thing that niggled me: on page 2, Dan first says, "This time, I think it's kinda my fault", and few seconds later says, "Well it's not my fault this time." Is that intentional? Can he not make up his mind?


People can get confused, assuming guilt then back-tracking.  Plus dream-like states aren't suppose to be straight-forward.  I'll be trying to make this a little surreal in the description and throwing in strange lines.  So it will be weird.

One of my weirdest dreams was when I was on a road trip to Paris.  I was dreaming that I was consoling the main actor from a film as he knew he wasn't going to win an Oscar but the supporting actor in the film was.  Pretty strange.


Quoted from JonnyBoy
I had no problem with the dialogue, unlike some people.


Happy to hear that, apart from the boring bits.


Quoted from JonnyBoy
...there's an ambulance and paramedics, but in the real life all the couple get is two fishermen poking them with their rods?


The dream is not suppose to be a reflection of real-life and so the ambulance doesn't exist.  Just a thread of guilt and possibly a leaving wife.  Who knows.  I had so many ways to finish this.  I wasn't totally happy.  It's an ending that kinda fits.


Quoted from JonnyBoy
Although as I've said before, my entirely amateur opinion may well be entirely wrong.


It's all valid points in the end of the day.


Quoted from JonnyBoy
Hope some of my comments are useful!


Sometimes my grammar gets the worst of me.  Thanks for your comments.

Kind regards,


Javier


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