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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    One Week Challenge    May, 2020 Challenge  ›  Sword of Damocles - May OWC Moderators: Administrator
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  Author    Sword of Damocles - May OWC  (currently 279 views)
Don
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 10:41am Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Sword of Damocles by The Poet and the Pendulum - Short, Drama - When their relationship turns sour, an adulterer seeks the help of a mentally unstable doctor to save her husband with devastating results. - pdf format

Writer interested in feedback on this work



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-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
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Reef Dreamer
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 4:29pm Report to Moderator
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Like the title -  not New but makes  you think

Logline - has conflict, but I am also a bit confused, let’s see...

Ok, one scene, with a reversal drama

The one scene option is strong, easy to film and adds tension.

Overall it Felt a bit rushed. A Last minute option perhaps - if so, well done. Better than I would do.

The dead coming back like that was hard for me to buy, in this context.

But you could sense a real writer in this - betrayal, lust, death, rebirth, and betrayal again

Now who does that remind me of...


My scripts  HERE

The Elevator Most Belonging To Alice - Semi Final Bluecat, Runner Up Nashville
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eldave1
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 5:41pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted Text
INT. HOSPITAL - ROOM 1345 - NIGHT

A half-naked Brad plumps a pillow under his head, gets comfortable. She’s tidying up, unzipped dress back on.


Why are you repeating the exact same header – just put LATER there.


Quoted Text
BRAD
Aside from his aorta, the big artery from the heart, is leaking, he’s in perfect health.

The above read a bit clunky to me. I’d lose the big artery from the heart.


Quoted Text
Marla ponders the heinous nature of this –


Marla???

Hard for me to believe that Paula cared about anybody finding anything out or saving her marriage if she is willing to hump a dude next to her ill husband’s hospital bed.  


Quoted Text
A misty-eyed Paula nods her head “yes.” Brad slips the pulse monitor off his finger. A thunderous boom.

Got lost here on the boom. Not sure what you are conveying.


Quoted Text
The pulse monitor beeps - he writhes an awful gurgling, flatulent sounds erupt from his out-of-control body.

Lost the flatulence – it is a tone killer!

Didn’t buy for a minute that a man on his death bed could choke a healthy dude out. You lost me there.

Writing was generally solid – I think the story though suffers from some logic leaps and some odd toned-shifting.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Gary Howell
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 6:46pm Report to Moderator
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My initial takeaway from this was that it was almost like a scene from a soap opera.  They’re having sex in the hospital room next to her incapacitated husband?  And have you ever been in an ICU?  There’s literally no way they’d be able to have to sex without every nurse and doctor being able to hear what’s going on.

While it’s not badly written, I’m just having a hard time buying the setup, but maybe that’s what you were shooting for.  A man comes back from the dead and kills Brad?  He couldn’t extricate himself from the grip of a recently deceased guy?  I mean, it’s a fun turn but just hard to buy into.  Still, a breezy, fun read.  Best of luck with it.


My web site and scripts can be found here:

Gary's web site
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_ghostwriters
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 11:30pm Report to Moderator
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Ho, boy! Where to begin, cool title.

I kind of like it but felt it bordered on too cute. I wouldn’t completely nix the scene where Harry comes back but I’d re-work it somehow.  At the moment, it feels a bit of a stretch.  Also, I think believability counts in everything we write, even if it's ultimately a silly popcorn flick.

Small mistake in the parenthetical - (Marla should be Paula)

The ending seems a bit rushed. Solid writing on display. So kudos for that.-A


"When I dive... I go deep, only to surface the hub when necessary."

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spesh2k
Posted: May 16th, 2020, 11:45pm Report to Moderator
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Hmm... not sure what to make of this one. It's well written and the dialogue is good. The characters were despicable, which is fine, I suppose... sometimes rooting against someone is just as good as rooting FOR someone. I guess Paula (you call her Marla on page 3) was the lesser of the two evils... but, damn, she just had sex with a dude next to her husband's unconscious body. And her child doesn't belong to Harold -- both he and Jen are unaware. That's pretty messed up!

The ending felt SUPER rushed... I didn't really buy Harold choking out Brad and killing him that quickly, adrenaline boost or not. And then the nurse and Paula's daughter hurry in and embrace her... while Brad's dead body is on the floor?

This kinda felt like a mini soap, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But, with nobody to root for, it was difficult who exactly to root against... I guess we would root for Harold, but, lying unconscious for the majority of the story, I just wasn't connected to him despite him being wronged.

Not bad by any means -- again, good dialogue and well written (only a few typos). I just don't think the story was for me.

-- Michael


MY FEATURE FILMS:

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Check out my latest horror script, HONEY MUSTARD - https://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-horror/m-1585433547/
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khamanna
Posted: May 17th, 2020, 2:03am Report to Moderator
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Nice idea. A bit pricey  to film though, with the hospital and all.
I thought the idea was to write low-budget and something you could film while . This is not something I would be able to film for instance but your call.

I think you could cut on dialog. I found myself drifting away because not all of it was full of texture. The characters at the beginning repeated the thoughts in my opinion.

I also thought that the resolution was somewhat convenient. You kind of pushed it to be the way you wanted if it makes sense.
But it was a fresh idea, different, so I appreciated the different setting.
Anyway, good luck. And thanks for sharing.
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ajr
Posted: May 17th, 2020, 8:02am Report to Moderator
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So this was a pretty ambitious attempt, and different, and I like the noirish feel of it, and the dialogue is snappy and biting.

Didn't feel very COVID-y, again, one that for me, could have taken place in an environment outside of a pandemic.

Some plot points that didn't feel realistic, however I think that when the restriction of the page count is lifted, the "bad doctor" and the "adulterous wife" are pretty interesting characters to explore.  The doctor attempting to kill  the husband under false pretenses, without giving out all the information, was a good turn.

AJR


Click HERE to read JOHN LENNON'S HEAVEN https://preview.tinyurl.com/John-Lennon-s-Heaven-110-pgs/
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LC
Posted: May 17th, 2020, 8:25am Report to Moderator
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I think you missed your comic calling here. Really? Straight drama?

Your opening line:
The thunderous LIGHTNING STORM dances across the room.

Reads as if it's already been established.I think it might be better to intro it something like:
A lightning storm dances across the room.

I'm getting a distinct melodramatic/soap opera vibe here and if it's unintentional (I don't see it listed as comedy/satire) then I really think you should tweak a few details and reboot it. So kooky it almost works. I keep expecting Dorothy Michaels  (Tootsie) to make a cameo appearance.

For it to really work on this level a lot of your descriptions, or a few at least, need to be embedded as part of the dialogue. Your viewing audience will otherwise miss out on a lot of the hidden gems of description.

I'm now reading some of the feedback and thinking maybe I'm completely off track. Not the first time.  
Very entertaining and off the wall. Not getting a lot via Covid-19 which seems incidental at best.


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PedroS
Posted: May 17th, 2020, 2:00pm Report to Moderator
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Dear Artist, thank you for sharing your story.

I like Brad and Paula. Nice Dynamic between them. Spicy dialog. Big secrets. Actually all you need for a nice short story, however did it sometimes feel a little all over the place and I not clearly got the vital connection to Covid-19.
Anyway I wanted to read a spicy script, you gave me one. So thank you.
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Yuvraj
Posted: May 18th, 2020, 6:18am Report to Moderator
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Well, it felt to me like an Opera.

A few problems.


Quoted Text
INT. HOSPITAL - ROOM 1345 - NIGHT


You repeated the same slugline twice. Presuming, this is to be a continuous shot with a time lapse, just write LATER.


Quoted Text
Marla ponders the heinous nature of this -


Who's Marla? You miswrote the character name.


Quoted Text

The pulse monitor beeps - he writhes an awful gurgling, flatulent sounds erupt from his out-of-control body.


Not written properly.

A bit of exposition, but then OK it is a short.

Overall, nice effort.

Good luck.





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Dreamscale
Posted: May 18th, 2020, 5:02pm Report to Moderator
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Oh boy.  Ummm...

Well, first of all, your logline is a real mess.  Read that thing back out loud a few times.  As written, it's very poor.

Sadly, I'm out on Page 2, as the writing is very poor, what's taking place is redonkulous (unless this is a comedy/spoof/pisser), and the dialogue is so completely unrealistic, I just can't go on.

I'm sorry.

zero


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JEStaats
Posted: May 18th, 2020, 7:04pm Report to Moderator
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A little witty drama with a dash of sex and horror. For me, all the components fell short and the attempts of wit were met with groans at best. I'll give you points for spelling 'oh my god' about every way possible. Also loved how Paula responds to Harry in a straight forward conversation after he comes back from the dead and kills Brad. And daughter Jenny...must've missed something.
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The Moviegoer
Posted: May 19th, 2020, 11:58am Report to Moderator
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I’m not sure what the point of this was.

The scenario was far-fetched and implausible. The characters were paper-thin caricatures.

The dialogue was too brusque and meandering, like it was written in a stream-of-consciousness rather than towards a clear end-point.

It seemed to rely on shock humour; there were too many non-sequiturs, i.e. Lazarus syndrome shoehorned in with clunky exposition at a key plot point.

The humour didn’t resonate as it didn’t come from realistic character situations. It came across like a spoof version of The Bold and the Beautiful. Maybe this is what the writer was aiming for in the first place but it didn’t work for me on any level.


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Grandma Bear
Posted: May 19th, 2020, 2:10pm Report to Moderator
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This was one of the first scripts I read when they were posted. I didn't know how to review it properly, so I decided to let it sit for a few days. I read it again today and I'm still not sure what to say about it. I read through all the reviews too and I agree with most of them, so I'm just going to leave it there. Sorry to disappoint.


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Spqr
Posted: May 19th, 2020, 4:55pm Report to Moderator
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As far as I can tell, the only thing Covid-related about this story is Brad's line "We still have a virus out there." And the plot and characters are soap-opera stock. This story would have worked better had Brad tried to knock off Harry in a Covid ICU.

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MarkRenshaw
Posted: May 21st, 2020, 6:29am Report to Moderator
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This read to me like a scene out of The Bold and The Beautiful, more soap opera than comedy or drama and not my cup of tea but it met the criteria.

-Mark


For more of my scripts, stories, produced movies and the ocassional blog, check out my new website. CLICK
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Rob
Posted: May 21st, 2020, 8:35pm Report to Moderator
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What this hospital needs is more sex and murder! Brad checks all the boxes for a really bad dude. Harry sure turned the tables, didn't he? Not sure I've seen something like that before. Some good moments. I did a fair amount of re-reading to get it all down.
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