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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Sci Fi and Fantasy Scripts  ›  Inescapable
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Don
Posted: September 8th, 2018, 11:07am Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Inescapable by Matthew Lincoln - Short, Sci-fi, Horror, Thriller, Action - A kidnapped CEO of a robotics company finds himself hunted by a droid programmed to kill him. 23 pages - pdf format

Writer interested in feedback on this work



Visit SimplyScripts.com for what is new on the site.


-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky

Revision History (1 edits)
Don  -  September 27th, 2018, 1:36pm
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eldave1
Posted: September 9th, 2018, 11:23am Report to Moderator
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Hey, mate - took a look at the first few pages - seems like a cool concept - some clean-up is needed.


- either put the Doyle quote on the title page or in the actual script as a SUPER

- No need for the extra space between page 2 and 3


Quoted Text
The Nightly News plays.

NEWS ANCHOR (V.O.)
This is Channel 9 news with
Breaking news. The CEO of Palmer
Robotics, Robert Foster, has been
reported missing. He was last
spotted leaving the nightclub Tech
Noir...


No need to tell us what we are hearing. You don't need "]The Nightly News plays."

Quoted Text

INT. FACTORY-NIGHT


Should be:

INT. FACTORY - NIGHT

Space after factory and before Night - an issue in all your scene headings


Quoted Text
We find ourselves in a large, spacious factory. Itís a
decrepit joint that looks as if itís been around for years,
decades maybe.


A style thing I guess. But not a fan of the we find ourselves. Better as:

A large and spacious decrepit joint that's decades old.

Also - you don't need to repeat a location in your description that is in your header - i.e. Factory.

IMO - don't waste the space on the We stuff and the asides - if it's important - describe decrepit e.g., cracked concrete floors, rusty I-beams, etc.


Quoted Text
MAN
SOMEBODY HELP! LET ME OUT! HELP!


No need for CAPS.  The ! already gets the job done.

Best of luck with this



My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts

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eldave1  -  September 9th, 2018, 11:48am
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MatthewLincoln
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eldave1,

Thanks a lot for the feedback. At some point, I'm going to look through the script and I'll make those changes.

MatthewLincoln
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eldave1
Posted: September 9th, 2018, 3:22pm Report to Moderator
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No problem


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Dustin
Posted: September 14th, 2018, 1:54am Report to Moderator
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Action speaks louder than dialogue.

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Code

He looks at the logo, baffled. Heís in one of his own
buildings but has look of one whoís never seen this place
before.



This is a tell. How do we know it is one of his own buildings?

Code

Fosterís photo, and that of another MAN(40ís) are the only
pictures that arenít crossed out. 



Unnecessary info. We would have figured this out from the line before.

Code

 exoskeleton-like 



It is an exoskeleton. It isn't 'like' one.

Code

As Fosterís about to move, He hears a sound. A faint BEEPING
SOUND.



Why not just call it a beeping sound? Why repeat that he hears a sound twice?

Code

He looks around to see what it is, but the sound is
quickly drowned out by a loud, and mechanical.



A loud and mechanical what?

Code

As Fosterís about to move, He hears a sound. A faint BEEPING
SOUND. He looks around to see what it is, but the sound is
quickly drowned out by a loud, and mechanical. Thereís an
strange hiss to it.



A faint beep jerks Foster's head to the right. The beep is drowned by
a loud and mechanical hiss.


Code

It GROWS louder. Itís coming. His. Way.



Stop with the uppercase shite. It's only supposed to be for sound effects and that was in the old days. You're mixing it all up and it's wrong. It's not even right when it's right, it's still wrong. The full stops before every word... a novelists trick. You don't need those tricks in a screenplay... plus you haven't pulled it off correctly anyway.

This is where I run out of time.

Good luck.
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Nomad
Posted: September 14th, 2018, 2:41pm Report to Moderator
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I'm going to read through the whole thing before I dissect it.  
Sometimes the whole is greater than the sum of its parts...

Unfortunately, that's not the case here.

I guess my biggest question is, why?
What's the point of this story?
Did you write this for fun?
Is this a writing exercise?
Is this a piece on the pitfalls of greed?
Are you saying that unchecked automation will lead to the downfall of society?

All of these are valid reasons to write something like this.  I'm just curious as to your "why".

There's a lot wrong with the plot, the writing, and the overall structure of the script.
I'd venture to say you're a new writer and are trying out new things.

But there's nothing all that new here.

It's a bit of Terminator, Oblivion, and I, Robot all mixed together with an aperitif of Law Abiding Citizen.
The scenes where Foster was chased by the Nemesis dragged on for way to long.  
The whole script could be shortened to about 10 pages and not lose anything.

I applaud your effort, but this falls short for me.

-Jordan


Read my scripts here:
SOCIAL EXPERIMENT 8pg-Drama
THE BRIDGE 8pg-Horror
SCHEISSE 6pg-Horror/Comedy
MADE FOR EACH OTHER-FILMED
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MatthewLincoln
Posted: September 14th, 2018, 7:53pm Report to Moderator
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Nomad,

Thanks for the read. I understand it didn't work for you. I'll try to address your points. You asked why I wrote it? It was a combination of all of those. I wanted to write a short that was largely driven by action/visuals as opposed to driven by dialogue. So it was a bit of a writing exercise. I wanted to have fun, too since I love the movie The Terminator, and wanted to do my own version of it.

The core story is that of a man who schemes to acquire a company/technology, and is ultimately hunted by the very technology he sought to steal. That's the essence of the Doyle quote at the beginning.

As to your point about problems with the plot of the film/structure: Without specifics, it's hard for me to address your comments. So come back with specifics, and I'll address them further.  However, you weren't far from the mark when you brought up movies like Terminator, Oblivion, and Law abiding citizen. iRobot is the only movie that I'd leave off on your list(Instead, I'd replace it with the film Runaway, directed by Michael Crichton).

It's essentially a revenge film, that plays out like a sci-fi/horror film. Think Death Wish, by way of The Terminator.

The plot is pretty straight-forward, even though the structure isn't:

A.) Dr. kirk Palmer created Palmer Robotics. Foster helped him but, eventually got greedy and wanted the company for himself.

B.) Foster hires criminals to kill Palmer so he can, take control of the company.

C.) Palmer survives, and sets into motion a plan for revenge.

Anyway, thanks again for the read.

Matthew Lincoln

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MatthewLincoln  -  September 14th, 2018, 10:28pm
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MatthewLincoln
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Dustin,

Thanks for the read. I get that the film didn't work for you, and I'll address your points to  the best of my ability.

"This is a tell. How do we know it is one of his own buildings?"

It was already established that the Man is Robert Foster, the acting CEO of Palmer Robotics. With that said, it shouldn't be hard to figure out that it's a factory associated with Palmer Robotics, and thus, one of his buildings.  The logo on the wall practically spells it out. Not to mention the scene where Foster uses the Palmer Robotics keycard, to no avail.


Fosterís photo, and that of another MAN(40ís) are the only
pictures that arenít crossed out.

"Unnecessary info. We would have figured this out from the line before."

Perhaps, but I don't see anything wrong with setting up the fact that there's another man, other than Foster, who's photo isn't crossed out. That was supposed to add to the mystery of why Foster's being hunted by Nemesis, and why the Scarred Man orchestrated these events.

You'll see him later in the flashback, and the very end scene. Setup, followed by payoff. Screenwriting 101. Setup: Photos of Foster and the other men. Payoff: The revelation of the home invasion, and Foster's involvement in it.

"It is an exoskeleton. It isn't 'like' one." Yes it is. I described it as an exoskeleton-like life support mechanism. It's more of a life support system, but it resembles an exoskeleton.  I'll clarify that in my next re-write.


As Fosterís about to move, He hears a sound. A faint BEEPING
SOUND. "Why not just call it a beeping sound? Why repeat that he hears a sound twice?"

That's also fair, and I'll change that on the next re-write.


"He looks around to see what it is, but the sound is
quickly drowned out by a loud, and mechanical."

A loud and mechanical what? Sound, I must've been typing so fast that I forgot that. I'll add it.


As Fosterís about to move, He hears a sound. A faint BEEPING
SOUND. He looks around to see what it is, but the sound is
quickly drowned out by a loud, and mechanical. Thereís an
strange hiss to it.

"A faint beep jerks Foster's head to the right. The beep is drowned by
a loud and mechanical hiss."

Same as my above comment. I'll clarify that.


It GROWS louder. Itís coming. His. Way. I'll change that.

"Stop with the uppercase shite. It's only supposed to be for sound effects and that was in the old days. You're mixing it all up and it's wrong. It's not even right when it's right, it's still wrong." I'll look into making some corrections, but provide specifics on "It's not even right, when it's right. It's still wrong."

"The full stops before every word... a novelists trick. You don't need those tricks in a screenplay... plus you haven't pulled it off correctly anyway."

Provide some more specifics, and I'll address that. Hope this doesn't come across as combative. For the most part I got a lot of your issues--there were only a few things  that you raised that I had problems with.  Anyway, thanks for the read.

Matthew Lincoln


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MatthewLincoln  -  September 14th, 2018, 10:40pm
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Nomad
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Matthew,

I emailed you the first six pages of my review.

-Jordan


Read my scripts here:
SOCIAL EXPERIMENT 8pg-Drama
THE BRIDGE 8pg-Horror
SCHEISSE 6pg-Horror/Comedy
MADE FOR EACH OTHER-FILMED
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MatthewLincoln
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Jordan,

I got your e-mail. First off, thanks for reading my script and offering feedback. I got some of your issues and will make some changes. I do however want to address some of your points.

1.) Foster finding the gun.

As you know, the shotgun had tracking devices in it. The way I came up with the idea of the droid is that it has the entire layout of the factory uploaded into it's computer system--that's how it was able to find a zone to reload. It was programmed to kill Foster, and the quickest way to find him was via trackers. The Scarred Man/ Palmer implanted the gun with trackers, and left it for Foster because he knew he'd take it-- given his situation.

The whole thing was a ruse to fool Foster into taking the tracking devices. I wanted there to be action in the script, but Foster just finding a gun out of the blue made no sense. By doing this-- I'm setting up the action and explaining how the Nemesis was able to find him so quickly.

The tracking thing is significant. When he destroyed the trackers, the droid used its back-up function--the security cameras. When Foster destroyed both, he put the droid in  a position where it had to "guess" his location--which prompted the Scarred Man to confront Foster, personally. Foster had essentially turned the tables on Palmer and the droid.


2.) The Red dots.

You asked how Foster could see the dots from behind, and why didn't he hear the droid first. He did hear it, but didn't know what it was or where it was. He knew enough to run. How did he see the red dots from behind? Because the droid's targeting system is laser based(Think of the targeting system from The Predator). It fired a laser- based target on Foster. He was supposed to see one of the dots, followed by a cluster of dots-- and turn to see the droid. I'll clarify that, if needed.

3.) Say hello to Nemesis

You said you personally hated that. Just curious, what about that did you hate?

4. It's Coming. His. Way.

I wanted to build a bit of tension. But I'll change that, if necessary.

5.) Marks in yellow.

I was curious as to why some of it was highlighted in yellow.

6.) Scene headings. I get where you're coming from the headings.

EX: INT. FACTORY-LAIR-CONTINUIOUS instead of INT. LAIR, FACTORY-CONTINUOUS

I have seen headings in scripts done the other way, though. Two examples are scripts for The Dark Knight/The Dark Knight Rises.

Even though I've got books on Screenwriting( and taken classes in college), much of what I learned about screenwriting has come from reading screenplays. I'll do a bit more reading on the matter, before I change those.

7.) Schematics

The schematics for the droid are in the same room as the "People I have to kill" photos, because that's his lair. The other room that Foster found was more for his benefit-- a subtle way of letting him know why he's being hunted. He didn't know about the others until he found the room.

8.) ONE OTHER THING...

You said in an earlier post that It could've been shortened by 10 pages and not lose anything. Gott disagree on that one. The whole idea behind Inescapable, is that I wanted Foster's situation to live up to the title. I wanted the audience to get a sense that every time he thinks he's making some headway, the rug gets pulled right from under him.

EX: He finds out he's being tracked, and destroys the trackers. The droid finds him via a backup method--the security cameras. He destroys one of the Nemesis units. Another one emerges, only this time he's nearly out of ammo. I wanted his situation to be truly "inescapable" I don't know how I could've conveyed that by shortening it by 10 pages.


Also, I get some  of the other things you were saying. It was a pretty fair review. Thanks again.

Matthew Lincoln

P.S. The line about "Drowned out by a loud, mechanical" was supposed to be sound. I was typing so fast, I didn't catch that. It's in my re-write. Chinese, short order cook. Funny.

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MatthewLincoln  -  September 17th, 2018, 1:33am
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Nomad
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Quoted from MatthewLincoln
The whole thing was a ruse to fool Foster into taking the tracking devices.


I get that, but ultimately Palmer wants Foster dead.  Why go through this whole ordeal and give Foster a chance to live?  When the droid has Foster in its sights, why does it wait?  Why does it miss?

Now if Palmer wants to toy with Foster a little bit before he kills him, then that should be shown.  When Palmer gets frustrated it shows that things aren't going according to his plan.  This whole thing should be his plan.  Every single thing that happens should be according to Palmer's plan.



Quoted from MatthewLincoln
...He was supposed to see one of the dots, followed by a cluster of dots-- and turn to see the droid. I'll clarify that, if needed.


This wasn't clear to me.  Take another look at it and see if you can rewrite it.  Maybe I need to re-read it.



Quoted from MatthewLincoln
3.) Say hello to Nemesis


I think this is cheesy.  That's my opinion.  Nothing more.


The marks in yellow have a note associated with them.  If you hover your cursor over the highlight, the note should show.  You may be able to double click on it to bring the note up.




Quoted from MatthewLincoln
The schematics for the droid are in the same room as the "People I have to kill" photos, because that's his lair. The other room that Foster found was more for his benefit-- a subtle way of letting him know why he's being hunted. He didn't know about the others until he found the room.


I understand that visually it makes sense, but why would Palmer let Foster into his inner sanctum?  There's a better way to accomplish this.

The thing with screenwriting, and writing in general:  There's no one way to do anything.  
Sure there are some accepted practices that if you stray to far from you'll get some snide comments, or worse, no comments at all.

-Jordan


Read my scripts here:
SOCIAL EXPERIMENT 8pg-Drama
THE BRIDGE 8pg-Horror
SCHEISSE 6pg-Horror/Comedy
MADE FOR EACH OTHER-FILMED
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MatthewLincoln
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Hi everyone,

Just want to let everyone know that a re-write for Inescapable is coming soon.  It's mostly to clean some things up. I'll post it soon.

Matthew Lincoln
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Dustin
Posted: October 3rd, 2018, 1:56am Report to Moderator
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Is this the rewrite?
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MatthewLincoln
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Dustin,

Yeah, it is. I got rid of some of the uppercase words, and sharpened  up a few things.

Matthew Lincoln
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HyperMatt
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I would put 'Written by' as opposed to a 'film by'.

It is important that you put the Conan Arthur Doyle quote should be put on the first page with SUPER: I see that Eldave has already suggested this. Makes it seems to much like a book.


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