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Valen Crimes by B. Hynde Bars - Short, RomCom - A party business has issues, but from what? A computer virus or a deep-seated Valentine's fear. Perhaps it's AMORaphobia and unfulfilled dreams. Whatever it is: Revenge is sweet on an ugly street where two struggling love birds play a different kind of role. 10 pages - pdf format
A couple strange formatting things right off the top: the date being listed in the slugline instead of a super or something like that. Then, "MALE CUSTOMER", but he's immediately referred to as "BUCKO". Some other strange choices so far: You use "wha-haut" and "whahaut" interchangeably and I'm waiting to see if it matters that Jack isn't married to Janet, otherwise why refer to him as a "common law boyfriend"? After the explanation you give, not necessary to include. You can get across that they've been in a relationship for a long time without getting married without ever bringing it up.
I'll be entirely honest when I say that, by the time this was over, Joe Louis just beat the shit out of me. I couldn't make sense of the plot, the word phrasings, the (I assume) jumps in time, except that she and Bucko (I'm guessing) did the Valencrimes Virus? From a pure writing standpoint, it feels like a veteran of the site, but there were a lot of misspellings and almost no commas anywhere to be found. It was tough to read through and one that I didn't particularly enjoy, not because it's bad but because it's... dense.
Ok, first one out of the gate, let's see what we got...
As always, just my two cents...
This is a strange sequence to begin with. The dialogue and action sequences are really off-kilter.
Okay, so it was a dream. What was the point of the dream? Will it have any applicability to the rest of the story?
Jack and Janet seem to have strange interactions for people that are living together. Not sure how to view that.
I'm trying to follow the story, but it's just all over the place and the dialogue is nonsensical. I really do not get anything going on here at all. There doesn't seem to be a plot, other than the Valencrimes virus seems to be affecting Janet's shop. That's about all I'm getting out of it. Sorry, but congrats on getting an entry in.
Needs plenty of work, from the too-long logline to the clunky dialogue and the clumsy descriptions. Plus, where's the romance in this romantic comedy. (The comedy needs some punching up, too.) Back to the drawing board.
I have no idea what i just read and I got through to the end...ROMCOM? I don't think so Neither romantic or funny... or chocolates, flowers and red for that matter.. Or maybe the welsh costume was the RED but i don't think some other readers would know that.
Wow, not sure where all that was going and then went.
It kinda bumbles along, full of tally talk that just doesn’t really say or go anywhere. There was some kinda romance there, comedy was lacking for my own taste (obviously completely subjective). You basically could hack lines out of this and make it a 5 page work, but I’m still not sure it’d resolve itself with the current through line.
On the upside, you're hitting the zany sauce pretty hard, and I likes me some zany. I think some of it is genuinely, and organically funny. On the downside, I had a hard time following what the heck was going on, so my interest wandered.
I think this needs a significant overhaul, from content to writing... with a sharp focus on what is relevant to the story, on what establishes story -vs- what doesn't establish story... and then cull the excess stuff. This is JMHO.
I'm guessing this is written by someone who isn't fluent in English. The grammar suggests a different primary language.
There are some really good lines hidden away in here, but they're lost in the mess. The dialogue is nonsensical and the story is really hard to understand. The humour is kinda there, or at least you tried with the dialogue.
If you are new to screenwriting, you're off to a great start, aside from the language barrier. There are some mistakes in the formatting, but nothing that can't be fixed simply by reading more professional screenplays to see how things are done.
Hello Writer - This is my last one soooo... please make it a good one
That title page - hideous
Wait, you have written that she mistakes this guy for someone else BEFORE it actually happens, gave me a head scratch moment - Also, remember that the reader is also an intelligent being (most of the time) In other words, we all know a bell above a shop door signals a customer has come in and let us see that she mistakes the guy for someone else, don't tell us first.
The conversation, why can't she call him Bucko? he literally just told her that was his name - and she is rude as fuck for a shop owner, but not in a 'Black Books' funny kinda way.
I'm trying to follow this - I just can't. I don't know what's going on - whats crypto? where did the computer come from?
Wait all that was a dream? come on, is it relevant at least, I'm gonna skip ahead and find out... nope not relevant, no Bucko and no Men in Black in the rest of the script.
This is my last one, I'm fatigued, I can't go on anymore
The script opens with a 3-page dream scene that doesn't seem to connect with Janet and Jack's relationship. And there's the 2 1/2-pages spent with Lady Stuck-Up that also has no connection to the relationship. And the final page is about the street people. As far as I could tell, it was pretty much business as usual for this couple, and the relationship wasn't impacted in any meaningful way with what went on.
Ohh-kay, so that happened. What the hell was this all about? Snookums? Wookams? Methinks not. Why? I was in a coma! Hmm. I still can’t figure this script out! Why? Valencrimes! Oh yes. Then there’s that utter nonsense. The what? Nonsense! You know, as in the characters? Yes! We’re they French? No. Does it matter. Well, one was. Who! Wookams, you turd! Oh right. Dafuckwasdisabout? Dunno. Maybe nothing? Yes! A dream! Maybe. Crypto currency is your fancy? Yes! Who’s? Snookums! Who? Yes! A gang of hoodlums down the street. Watch out. Hey! Where did Buckhoveritz go? Who? Buckhoveritz. Dunno. Maybe he’s with Jack. Oh yes... Wookams!
Not a fan of upper case font in dialogue nor underlined words. And when you read the dialogue word "EX-claMATION", it made me cringe. I almost thought this script was a pisser. No offence if this was a serious effort.
I suppose the wackiness could be seen as comedic. But with a story that's hard to follow. It makes it feel like there was no story.
I won’t judge a script by its title page, but the style coupled with the title, writer and the “blah blah blah” makes me think you think you’re quite clever. As someone who delusionally (which is not an actual word according to Microsoft word?) thinks he’s quite clever, I may be a little harder on this. … but I’ll hold back until I start reading.
I think I was right. Bucko… at least she has a normal name. Half page in I’m not sure what’s happening.
This is absurd… intentionally, but nevertheless
Feel free to hate me, but I don’t want to finish this. Not hating on the attempt or the style, I’m sure people like it, I just don’t have the patience.
I'd list my "work" here, but I don't know how to hyperlink.
"Career" Highlights -I have a single credit on my IMDB page. -One time a fairly prominent producer e-mailed me back. -I have almost made $1000 with my writing! -I've won 2 mugs... and a thong. (polaroids of me in thong available for $10 through PM)
Thank you to everyone who took the time to read and review. I appreciate your time.
A good writer shouldn't have to explain anything; so there's obviously been a lack of transmission on my part.
Here's some of what I had in mind. For those people who felt like they were in the dark, I apologize. It was not my intention.
So let's see...
This is a story about Janet, a lady who has an aversion to Valentines’ celebrations. Nevertheless, as a party shop owner she must rise to the challenge to decorate her shop.
One day, near the big event, she awakes from a disturbing dream. At first she believes she’s front and center with an important casting director, but it’s all just her subconscious wishful thinking as the dream shifts and she learns it’s some guy with an almost unpronounceable name ( ) who calls himself Bucko.
Bucko is really her longtime common law husband, but in the dream, he’s an unhappy customer who bought a defective Jailbird costume at Halloween. Ridiculous! Why’s he bringing it back now?! What’s this guy trying to pull anyways?! Making up lies he was in a coma. Well maybe he was, but that’s besides the point. He’s a big black and white striped pain in the keister as far as she’s concerned.
But then... the ominous sound of shots from outside and Men in Black are slinking about.
Bucko has apparently been involved in some kind of crypto currency scam and he’s usurped Janet’s password to do it.
There is an “almost” romantic interlude as they hide away from the Men in Black, the big time criminals, but in the haze of the craze:
Janet awakes with a snort.
It’s Status Quo now and she as usual, puts on one of her costumes for work while her common law boyfriend tries to wrap his mind around the concept of her cranky demeanour.
The problem appears to have its roots in two things: A computer virus dubbed Valencrimes which ruins the otherwise smooth running of the business and has her doing more talking to people than she would otherwise like.
And secondly, the whole marriage conversation will inevitably crop up between her and Jack aka that Dream Pest, Bucko.
We learn that Janet has had a secret dream of being an actress, hence her love for dressing up in costumes, assuming different personas and working with the themes in the shop.
Jack comes up with a small solution to one of her problems: Do a youtube video.
In the meantime, it’s back to work: Jack has been on a Folsom Prison Blues song kick and that’s just another irritant that had made it into Janet’s dream as Jailbird Man.
After dealing with a snooty customer, Janet is finally done and she’s ready to take out her frustrations not only through the making of a youtube video, but getting a little personal satisfaction in the realm of “pay back” to a group of street people that hang out downtown and bully people for handing over money. (this part is based on a true story).
Janet and Jack dress up like them and infiltrate the horde. Janet, impersonating one of the gang, gets fifty bucks from one of them to “apparently” go get them fried chicken. And, just to be nice, she gives him some Valentines’ chocolate, in the form of Ex Lax.
In Janet’s final transformation, she peels off the homeless garb, revealing her new improved Valentines self, wearing a sexy red dress and a satisfied smile.
I imagine that Janet and Jack might finally tie the knot, but I never indicated that.
There’s something strangely satisfying about karma though... When Mr. and Mrs. Stuck Up get swarmed by the hoard. And Wookims dolls out some of his cash, it's good. But I do feel sorry for Wookims because he has to be married to the snoot.