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This one was pretty decent, I liked it. I liked how Andrew is dealt with a moral dilemma and chooses to go with what is MORALLY right rather than what is legal. Especially considering his stance on Covid in the earlier scenes. He actually has a decent arc, which is good for a short, especially written in such a tight time frame.
The writing overall was pretty good, at least in terms of the description and presentation. My main issue was the dialogue. It didn't seem to fit two LA cops. I could tell that the writer wasn't American just by the spelling of the word, "favourite". But the dialogue just feels off and sounds awkward.
ANDREW What is the favourite color of your wife?
It would be more like -- "What's your wife's favorite color?" As is, it sounds like maybe English was the officer's second language.
ANDREW What did she wanted to become when she was a little girl?
Should be "What did she want"
ANDREW Twenty years and yet so less information about the details.
Again, awkward. Should be something more natural like -- "Twenty years and, yet, you know so little about her". Even that sounds a little stiff. "Twenty years? Sounds like you barely know her."
ANDREW Please Carl, do me a favor and change the channel if I just hear one word more of the big bad wolf government I might forget to--
It was clever to frame the script around bored cops on a beat. That's a pretty unique perspective of the virus. I like the interplay between the officers and the differences they have with wearing masks. The discussion of the novel and the details not always coming sharply into focus is good.
I feel like a bit more tension could be added to the end. It needs to be more clear that the older cop would have arrested the family--that he was a no mercy type. Putting the older cop in the building might have added more tension. What if he was just about to open a door to find the family, but was distracted by the younger officer just in time? Nothing in there, the younger cop would tell him.
Writer... this was decent, but I can't help adding that the initial dialog exchanges between Carl and Andrew just felt a bit stilted. Logic issues with the 459. Andrew was pretty nonchalant for a burglary call. I get what you are trying to do, but still, not buying a single officer going in alone.
(holding a flashlight)
LAPD, I'm coming in.
Um, I don't know???
Nonetheless a good entry.
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So there are some jarring things a the top of the script - "empty, almost abandoned" doesn't really tell me what's going on. If the streets are empty, they are abandoned as well - no need for the qualifier "almost" or to use both words. And "some" advertisements - better to say "a voice-over guy hawks pimple cream on the radio" or something innocuous like that. And chewing calmly should be calmly chewing.
And these two cops speak with almost the same voice, and it's not really indicative of street language or the banter between officers.
And I don't know police lingo so I'm not sure what the ramifications of not sending a CIT car is. And if you don't want it pronounced in dialogue as "SIT", it needs to be written with periods (C.I.T.).
All that said - I liked the story and the message it delivered. At the top, I was thinking, wow, this is called "Justice" - that's a meaty subject and a tall order to live up to. And what I liked most about this is that the young cop delivered justice on the job, and then you tied it back to the banter about not knowing what the book was about. So really great job on that.
Execution-wise, this can use a scrubbing, but story-wise, I really did like it. Nice effort!
A nice effort with a clear message. I recommend doing a bit more research into the day-to-day life of a police officer. Much of Carl and Andrew's interactions, as well as the lingo they use when communicating with each other, felt very unnatural to me. If you were to read up on police officer procedures, you can apply the info to this story and make it feel more grounded.
There are numerous typos and grammar issues, enough to distract from the story. Extra attention should be given to the proof reading process. There's definitely something here... it just needs to be cleaned up.
So minus the grammatical things, it's a decent story that you have laid out here. Two cops from very different backgrounds in the middle of the pandemic without much to keep them busy. A disturbance causes one of them to investigate a business which has become inhabited with homeless people looking for safety and shelter, and the younger cop essentially looks the other way, showing some compassion.
The story makes a good comment about life in the pandemic and how it affects those that are less fortunate. I think there were some awkward moments in the writing, but I'm guessing this is from a newer writer or from a writer for whom English is a second language, which I have no problem with and try to overlook and focus on the story itself. From that standpoint it was pretty good. My only nitpick is that a police office would never let his partner go into a place like that alone -- it would be a dereliction of duty and a firable offense, especially if the partner got hurt. So maybe in a rewrite you have the older partner in another part of the building, and Andrew finding the family in a second part of the building.
Setting aside the grammar and language problems...
The core story here is worth the read, though I think you can tell it more effectively. You really don't get into the story until page 3. If you cut the first 2 pages of this script, I don't think you'd feel a measurable loss. And, when you're talking about 6 pages max, you can't afford to stall 2 pages.
I think you definitely need to get Carl more active, to build tension. Maybe even make it clear that Carl wouldn't agree with Andrew's decision. (As it sits, Carl probably would agree, as he says the virus thing is a government plot to get rid of poor people.)
Those 2 pages could have been used to build more tension, or to spend a bit more time with your key moment... Andrew's reaction to finding the family.
I like where you're going here. And, the idea is a good one, worth exploring.
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Did enjoy the interplay between the two officers. One us hard and grizzled. The other is young and idealistic. Story that unfolded showed Andrew's morals. Strongest parts for me was the dialog between the two at the beginning, before the action takes place. Later in the script some of the dialog might need to be cleaned up but reading it again reminded me how good that opening dialog was. Enjoyed it.
Story is actually good, but this script suffers from lack of knowledge of police radio speak, procedures and English. Don't take that as a total cut of your potential. My English when I first started writing was atrocious. But, with the help from people here at SS and reading a massive amount of scripts and books, I can now hold my own. In fact, I often get complimented on my writing these days. Also, another non native English speaking writer who started out here at SS, went on to win PAGE one year and $25K and a Hollywood movie produced. It takes hard work and a long time, but if you have the basic natural story telling skills, and based on this short you do, you can do it too. Good Luck!