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  Author    Simpatico  (currently 10998 views)
Don
Posted: January 13th, 2015, 6:00pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Simpatico by L. Chambers - Short, Drama, Comedy - Two know-it-all friends believing themselves to be the authorities on love, sex, dating, and finding 'the one' recount the events of a one night stand. 21 pages - pdf, format


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Angry Bear  -  April 23rd, 2015, 8:26am
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StevenClark
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Hey Libby!

Was keeping my eyes open for something new from you. For someone who likes her shorts "short"... 21 pages isn't what I was expecting but hey, it's cool.

I say this in almost all of my reviews -- could be alot shorter.  But I see what you were building up to here, and why it took this long to get there. I thought your use of Intercut would be bothersome the way it was set up, but it never really threw me. I pretty much know who I was with at all times.

One suggestion I could make, aside from the obvious "trimming," is that if you're gonna have two talking head (or four) for the duration, then you need to make whats going on around them a bit more interesting. Here you have one guy getting his arse pinched, and then a waitress getting ogled by the guys. It just won't do. Now maybe you could have thrown another flashback or two in there going back to the night they had sex. Or perhaps the morning after. Was the morning, her leaving his apartment, uncomfortable? Was anything said between them? We know they both had different issues with each other that set them apart, and some crossed wires as to what each was thinking and trying to accomplish. I believe you need to dig a little deeper here to give more weight to the main story. Or you could have different things going on in the beer garden that sort of mimics their feelings and the misunderstandings they had. And intersperse them throughout so there's not too much of them just talking. It might certainly liven things up further.

Not that I was bored, mind you. Just the opposite. I was entertained by their banter and was wondering how this all would end. And in that respect you did not disappoint! I absolutely loved the twist with their friends making their seperate ways to the bar, and like the Red Sea parting, they found each other. That was skilled, and the high point of the script for me. It felt a touch magical, and I think you could have played it up even more and turned it into something fantastical! Go deeper and make it wonderfully surreal. It really was a touching moment and I felt it deserved more. And...

Okay, here it is... I think that's where you should have ended this. That was such a brilliant moment, I really didnt care what happened between the two mains. Honestly. Perhaps you can tie that up earlier, like having them meet on the way to the bathroom. Tie that shit up. I think it can be done because I'm now more interested in the other two at this point.  Seriously.

Anyway, very good effort, Libby. An enjoyable read, trim it down, and think again about the ending. Hope I helped and touched on some things to think about.

Steve


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Stumpzian
Posted: January 13th, 2015, 9:00pm Report to Moderator
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Libby,

Smartly handled -- I should say choreographed -- all the way. You make it look easy, though it's quite the opposite. I laughed a bunch of times.

Good comments by Steven, but I didn't agree with all. I'd say don't trim (it goes fast) and don't add more about what was going on around. It would take away from the smart dialogue. Nor would I lop off  the restroom scene at the end. I don't think the Ann-Bob happy hook-up would work as well without the epilogue.

Henry



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LC
Posted: January 13th, 2015, 11:42pm Report to Moderator
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Thank you Don for posting this, much appreciated.


Quoted from Steve
Hey Libby!... For someone who likes her shorts "short"...

Ha, did I say that? Obviously I meant reading and reviewing them.


Quoted from Steve
I say this in almost all of my reviews -- could be alot shorter.  But I see what you were building up to here, and why it took this long to get there.


I was expecting this from some. I'm pretty sure it will run quicker than it reads. A lot of its interest and vitality/energy would depend upon casting the talent, actors and a good director and  especially in editing. The way it plays out it is a talking heads piece - some will like it, and some not so much. I quite like dialogue-heavy narratives as long as they're interesting enough and hopefully this will hold attention.


Quoted from Steve
I thought your use of Intercut would be bothersome the way it was set up, but it never really threw me. I pretty much know who I was with at all times.

Excellent. That's very good to hear. I tried writing it the conventional way but it dragged. I was concerned myself especially with the first few pages but I think it develops a rhythm. I experimented a bit but it's really the only way to do it.


Quoted from Steve
One suggestion I could make, aside from the obvious "trimming," is that if you're gonna have two talking heads (or four) for the duration, then you need to make whats going on around them a bit more interesting. ...maybe you could have thrown another flashback or two in there going back to the night they had sex...


Hmm, maybe. I do get your point as I mentioned above. Perhaps quick flashes are in order. What I want to avoid is making the running time any longer than it is but I will give this some thought and see what the general consensus is.


Quoted from Steve
Not that I was bored, mind you. Just the opposite. I was entertained by their banter and was wondering how this all would end. And in that respect you did not disappoint!


Good to hear. As you know when you write, after a while it's hard to remain objective and keep perspective.  


Quoted from Steve
I absolutely loved the twist with their friends making their seperate ways to the bar, and like the Red Sea parting, they found each other. That was skilled, and the high point of the script for me. It felt a touch magical, and I think you could have played it up even more and turned it into something fantastical! Go deeper and make it wonderfully surreal. It really was a touching moment and I felt it deserved more.


Ooh, that's interesting. You've really got me thinking now - the word 'surreal' did it. I'm going to experiment with this. Thanks so much for this comment it just proves how valuable feedback is. I'm not sure I'll be able to pull it off but I'll give it a go.


Quoted from Steve
And... Okay, here it is... I think that's where you should have ended this. That was such a brilliant moment, I really didnt care what happened between the two mains. ... I'm now more interested in the other two at this point.  Seriously.


The script originally did end at that point but I was encouraged to add more where Chad and Melissa were concerned - that it might be a lost (mildly) comedic opportunity if not. The bathroom scene was tacked on.

In that regard I'll be interested to know what others think.

So far it's one each - you and Henry.

Bear in mind I visualise this as a scene that should come in post or mid-credits.  I contemplated writing it like that with the whole ROLL CREDITS: - FADE IN: etc. but not only did it look pretentious but it's also the director's domain so I took it out...

I'd be interested to know what you think visualising it that way?
  

Quoted from Steve
Anyway, very good effort, Libby. An enjoyable read, trim it down, and think again about the ending. Hope I helped and touched on some things to think about.


Thanks so much Steve, glad you enjoyed it. And yes you definitely got me thinking in particular about that scene with Ann and Bob.



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LC
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Quoted from Henry
Libby, Smartly handled -- I should say choreographed -- all the way. You make it look easy, though it's quite the opposite. I laughed a bunch of times.

Henry, thank you for giving this a read and review.   Interesting too that you used the word 'choreographed' - it definitely did feel that way when writing it. And I'm chuffed to hear you laughed at some of it.

I don't regard comedy as my forte or genre of choice so it's great to hear you enjoyed the comedic elements of this.

Quoted from Henry
Good comments by Steven, but I didn't agree with all. I'd say don't trim (it goes fast) and don't add more about what was going on around. It would take away from the smart dialogue. Nor would I lop off  the restroom scene at the end. I don't think the Ann-Bob happy hook-up would work as well without the epilogue.

See, now this is also what's great about feedback - the different points of view. I'm really happy to hear all of this worked for you, - especially the dialogue and that you felt it goes fast. I was hoping the momentum of the dialogue would be interesting enough to carry it.

Thanks so much again for the read and review.


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Kyle
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Hi LC.

I almost didn't read this because of the page count, but I'm glad I did. It seemed to go faster than a lot of the ten page scripts I've read.

The most important thing with dialogue heavy pieces, is obviously the dialogue.  It has to be good enough to keep the reader interested and turning pages and I think you pulled it off here.

A couple of (very) minor suggestions.

Chad's line on page 13 'I s'pose I could do her once more,' felt a little off to me. The 'do her' part just didn't seem like something he'd say. Maybe 'shag her',  'nail her' ect.

The fade out at the bottom of page 19 threw me for a minute. I was about to close the window as I thought it had ended. (not that it would've mattered, I liked what came after but if it did end there, it would've been fine) Maybe move to the next page to avoid possible confusion.

Apart from that, I haven't got much to add, other than I enjoyed it.  Nice job.


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PrussianMosby
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Hey Libby,

Your feedback is very useful around this place, so it's good to see you got something going yourself. I'm actually quite excited what you do here.

I haven't read the comments.


The first point I've got to mention is that I'm not so pleased about the length. It's a taste thing I guess anyhow.

Simpatico

From the title I expect to feel good.

BEER GARDEN – One of the best slugs ever Feel good atmosphere's already established.

I better start reading now.


"MELISSA, a buxom brunette - spilling out of her top,
her skirt hiked up to reveal long tanned legs."

This is very good. Not often I read something meant as sexual is also written clearly sexual.


"CHAD
What’s with that? Have I got bad
breath or something?

Chad leans forward huffs his breath on Bob."

They're drinking beer, so that doesn't make sense to me. I think you could easily give him another reason to doubt about himself.


p4
"MELISSA
He was a little shy at first -
MELISSA
Yeah, so I took matters into my own
hands, if you know what I mean..."

in opposite to p5

"MELISSA
I figure the
kissing can come later. When we’re
a couple, you know."

She isn't consistent in my eyes. Maybe I'm wrong and she's just a bit jumpy and frivolous... I guess I'll see.
I see it, I'm wrong. The way it is: it's very good developed. All fine. I haven't erased the above from my notes to make you know that it works in its structure very, very good. You play with the audience. So, the explanation why she turned away her face when they were having sex, and those doubts I had about her behavior, turned out exactly as it should be.


P6 When Chad tells Bob about overnight privileges I think Bob's answers "your funny..." aren't needed and sound on the nose anyhow. Here, imo, an answer of him isn't needed at all. Maybe even shorten Chad's speech and leave it like that. You slow it down that way in my eyes, especially with those answers of Bob. Because, there's tension in the air - better keep that flow. The interchanging conversation between both tables, about the same subject, is beautifully interwoven.


P 15 the country stuff distracted me. I'd have liked it more if you stay close on the subject men-women only, puristically as you did before – not a big point though

p18 is delightful


Hahahaha great. But this is too much for me: "A quick glance at the mistletoe hanging above them." BUT MAYBE IT'S NEEDED. You make it bold that way,  but same time it's getting kind of satiric. I don't know....

Sidenote: I think fade out period is fade out period, you know.

Great ending.

Let me say this. You women here at ss are writing dramas dammmmnn good.

I enjoyed this read throughout. There's not a lot too critique. The points I made are marginal.

At 16/17 I found myself thinking about seeing this one on a stage.


The characters are grounded and natural. And, I think, the audience needs those plots of everyday people too. So, the stuff is justified of course. You also did well in transforming the men-women conflict into the social circumstances of 21 century – I mean, the psychology has changed and developed, right? and it's all there


Last thing: If you're aiming for a movie streamed within social medias as youtube and such, think about the title again. On the other hand, if you aim for festivals this point isn't so important "IMO"

Who wants to see it? Who are those peops exactly?

Simpatico? Common...

Why don't have an eccentric title?

I expect something creative, playful, and maybe even avant-gardish.

Such as:

Philosophy of the tomorrow lovers
Wo/Men's mentality problems

Libby, those titles I invented above are rubbish. But I hope you understand that I'd focus 100% on exact that audience who adores to watch this clever play of relationship between the genders. You already have to arrive at them with the title.

It was a lot of fun for me.

I hope some of my notes help.

Alex


No End of Wolves   (9p - psychological horror)


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DS
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Libby,

I thought this was great. The dialogue flew by with a lot of stand-out lines, the characters were well defined. I think this would look really appealing to actors as well, which most talking heads scripts might not. Anyways, writing this comment on the clock so I'm not going to harp on what I liked exactly too much.

There's heavy reliance on coincidences in the script, with that in mind I think you could put more emphasis on the destiny angle. Maybe throw in a tongue-in-cheek meta-reference about it? It could make two things rather clear. One would be a theme/the theme depending on what you had in mind when writing this. The other would be that the script, especially with coincidences is taking itself lightly and it's just not poor plotting, which though, really is already obvious enough.

I liked all of the coincidences of the same place, the same conversation topics. All worked great, but the fact that they noticed each other at exactly the same time.. maybe it was too many of them for me already at that point. I think one should notice the other first, ending up with the other noticing the one from actions there onwards... eventually leading them up to the respective bathrooms.

P19: I'm not a fan of Bob's "wow" right before the kiss.

I don't necessarily think that the scene after the kiss fits either. I think it worked well to find out that we were actually following Bob & Ann's story and it all clicks into place there. Perfect for a fade out imo. Otherwise we're ending on the note of not finding out what happens to Chad & Melissa, not as perfect.

Also, I'm not sure, but I was quite surprised to see drama listed as a genre. Looks more like a RomCom or just a comedy to me.

Hope this helped. Very much enjoyed the read - hoping this gets picked up. Good luck!
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eldave1
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First - well done, a very enjoyable read - great dialogue, perfect voice for the characters.

I got lost a little at the beginning with the lack of secondary scene headings as you switched back and forth between the guys and the gals - but picked it up after awhile. Where the lack of scene headings made it a bit confusing at first, I do think the use of them would disrupt what is a very snappy flow between the girls and the guys.

This a real nit, but there is one place where I would make a change:

CHAD
Jesus titty-fucking Christmas, look
at the arse on that.
- loud enough that the waitress can’t help but hear.

She turns, smiles.


I would change that to "She turns, rolls her eyes." It was just a hiccup for me - i.e. - these are fairly average looking dudes, she's a waitress that must have heard this a million times before - I think she would be put off.

I would also flip the last two scenes - I would go to the couple in the restroom first and close with the couple at the bar (just the reverse of what you have). Mostly because I think the second couple hooking up is the PERFECT close for this (great twist) and going back to the restroom for the primary couple just seemed anti-climatic.  

I think you have done a great job of intertwining humor and poignancy.

I would love to see you develop a feature from this. It would make for a great ROMCOM. You could write similar scenes for men and women at different stages of their lives (e.g., high school, twenty something, married, married with children, retired, ill/facing the end, etc.).  The arc could be that while men and women start far apart, they eventually reach a similar point of view).

Anyway - really liked it - nice work.



My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Dreamscale
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Yo, Libby, good to see a new script from you.

Seeing this is 20 pages and looks to be almost all dialogue and talking heads, I checked my clock to see if I really wanted to invest 20 some minutes in it.  I've got some time, so let's go.

I'll just preface this by saying this is simply my opinion, so take what you will and discard the rest.

Opening page is bloated and overwritten, IMO.  What we have here is really 2 sets of intros for 2 groups of peeps and a little dialogue - no way should this take up a whole page.  I'm sure many will vehemonantly disagree and say your intros are well done - and they are rather well done, it's just that they contain too much unnecessary description.

Remember that ALL characters need to be CAPPED when they're first intro'd, including this "waiter".

One of my "few"   Pet Peeves is when writers use an INTERCUT, as I just find it to be lazy writing and also hard to follow at times...and this is one of those times, as you change back and forth frequently and it takes much more attention to make sure we know where we are and who we're focusing on.

The reality is that you have 2 separate "scenes" here, yet you're playing it out...and writing it, as if it were one. It really comes across like all 4 of these peeps are together and talking together.  I understand the effect you're after, and filmed, it would work just like you want it to, but, to film it, this script would have to be totally broken down and Mini Slugs would need to be added, to make sure everyone knows exactly where we are at all times.

On Page 3, you have a Flashback, but it's not formatted correctly, at least IMO, that is.  Using Flashback in the actual Slug, just doesn't work nearly as well as using "BEGIN FLASHBACK:, and then setting your scene with a new Slug.  And in this Flashback, you don't properly set the scene, IMO, by starting with 3 one line passages that show really nothing, including who's even in the scene.

On page 4, the Flashback ends, and you use BACK TO INTERCUT, which isn't technically correct...and you start out with dialogue, which again, is not correct.

It's odd because Page 5 is all Ann and Melissa, as in the back and forth "intercut" has been forgotten.  It changes the pacing and comes off strangely.

All of Page 9 and all but the final 2 dialogue boxes are Melissa and Ann again, which throws off this intercut again.

And now, all of Page 11 to 15 is Chad and Bob...and most of 16 even!  Really?

OK, finished...now for the good news...

Dialogue is pretty good...very good in many places.  Tone is fun and playful.  Ending is nice.

For me, it's just way too long with nothing going on.  I'd cut several of the dialogue exchanges and probably add a few more Flashbacks of the "other" peeps in their lives - I think there could be some funny scenes there.

I'd also rethink the formatting with the intercut being the vast majority of the script.  It's a tough read for me, because I'm looking for new Slugs (Mini's would work perfectly) when the scene changes and it changes very, very often here.

I'd also format the Flashbacks better and get it out of the actual Slug.

You did a good job portraying both male and female attitudes and personalities here.  They may be cliche, but who cares, they're well done.

For what it is, which is really a long drawn out talking heads piece, it's impressive, but overly drawn out and long winded. I'd try and bring this in, in under 15 pages, and I think you could easliy do that without losing much of anything.

Overall, I liked it, though.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Dustin
Posted: January 14th, 2015, 12:04pm Report to Moderator
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Code

MELISSA, a buxom brunette - spilling out of her top,
her skirt hiked up to reveal long tanned legs.


Nice.

Code

And ANN, a curly blonde - shorter, rounder and more modestly
dressed, but with a cheery smile.


She even gets a 'but' the poor girl. Let's all pity her. I think the above could be written a little less patronisingly. I think even just dropping the 'but' would do it.


I like the intercut. There's some comedy value in having the conversations interrupted while also following both at the same time.


Code

MELISSA
Exactly. Beer, shag, kebab, and not
necessarily in that order.


Or even separately.


Code

MELISSA
Destiny? Please. That’s a pre-
feminist myth perpetuated by our
grandmothers to stop us tarting
around. Gotta put yourself out
there kiddo.


LOL.

Code

ANN
I think guys can smell fear and
desperation. Remember Scary Helen?



I'm pretty sure I've mistook that for psychosis a few times.


That's a very well done story. Nice work. Maybe you could run through and tighten the dialogue, maybe make it sharper... not that any particular area stood out to me, I have to say... but I've only read it once.

It's an excellent idea though, well executed and deserves to get made.
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RichardR
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LIbby,

Take all comments with a jaundiced eye.

Nice setup.  You have the plain Bob and Ann vs. the preening Melissa and Chad, even the names show their inherent differences.  And the players act their part.  I might be the one off here, but do guys really talk about women this way?  I understand sports, careers, politics, etc., but getting into the women/dating talk seems a convenient construct--or maybe I've been out of the dating rat race too long.

The dialogue is spiffy and quick.  Makes for a lively read.  You might look for more slang for the couples.  Don't women have specific names for these guys?  Don't men have equally slang titles?  

The ending seems a bit too good to be true.  Love at first sight for the plain ones while the peacocks play the I-can't-let-you-see-how-much-I-want-you game.  But it makes for a good ending.  The peacocks are doomed to bypass each other.  The Wing-people find romance.  Works for me.  

Best
Richard
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Reef Dreamer
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Hi Libby

I thought i had read this before on the title, but i hadn't . i think there was an OWC script with a similar title.

a bit like others, the 21 pages was a concern but it reads faster. However, to me this is feels like a 10-12 pager. The dialogue is smooth and the tone solid, it just feels a tad meandering.

On the up side this should be easy to film so i hope it gets picked up.

Mind you I have to say that sometimes when things are shortened they also lose feel, but a few pages off this would be easy and may give a crisper focus.

I didn't make notes as i went but i did keep on thinking to myself, why can't they just see each other? and then they did. Did i miss something? May be a better reason for the change could occur. e.g. - Large man - which the women look at to se if he is attractive and the men look at cos he looks fierce -  and sitting in between them, gets up and goes etc Could be anything really.

Random thought - with scripts like this i like it when a theme comes back at the end, something discussed at the beginning arise as a conclusion. A bookend so to speak.....mistletoe.....aha just remembered that.    Possibly the man who kisses the girl at the end could mock mistletoe at the beginning - touch of irony etc Mr Bah humbug gets to change.

The flashbacks when the actions were contrary to what they were saying also slightly threw me. I was just trying to understand why, what were they getting out of this?. Again i may have missed a common thread.

all the best


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The Elevator Belonging To Alice - Semi Final Bluecat, Runner Up Nashville
Inner Journey - Page Awards Finalist - Bluecat semi final
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IamGlenn
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Hey Libby.

Nice one here. Really entertaining stuff. Normally if something is this dialogue driven I get a bit bored but not this one. It's really well written and there are some very funny parts in there too. I think Chad's line "Jesus titty-fucking Christmas" has potential to be a highly quotable line.

The conversations between the characters are expertly handled and from my two years living there I definitely think it's very Australian.

Then the twist at the end. Brilliant. About mid-way through I could see something like that happening but the way you brought it together was wonderful. Really liked it. Have to say though, I agree with StevenClark, I would have ended it there. The ending with Chad and Melissa did nothing for me. But maybe works for others.

Well done with this and good luck with it


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**I just want to say thanks guys for all the very helpful reviews so far.  I'll get to your suggestions in order and try not to be too long winded about it.  



Quoted from Kyle
I almost didn't read this because of the page count, but I'm glad I did. It seemed to go faster than a lot of the ten page scripts I've read. ...It has to be (dialogue) good enough to keep the reader interested... and I think you pulled it off here.

Thanks Kyle, I'm really glad you gave it a go and were happy with your decision.


Quoted from Kyle
Chad's line on page 13 'I s'pose I could do her once more,' felt a little off to me. The 'do her' part just didn't seem like something he'd say. Maybe 'shag her',  'nail her' etc.

I think 'do her' might be a regional thing - 'shag' and 'nail' would work just as well I agree. 'Do', as a euphemism is quite common around my parts and Chad's not the most sophisticated of blokes. But I'll bear in mind what might be more universal.


Quoted from Kyle
The fade out at the bottom of page 19 threw me for a minute. I was about to close the window as I thought it had ended. Maybe move to the next page to avoid possible confusion.

Ooh, that one got by me. Thank you for pointing that out. I'll remedy that.

I might actually change it to the original idea I had of formatting it so that extra scene comes in post/midway through the credits. At the very least I'll move it on to the next page as you suggest.


Quoted from Kyle
Apart from that, I haven't got much to add, other than I enjoyed it.  Nice job.

Thanks Kyle. So glad you enjoyed it.


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