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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    One Week Challenge    October, 2011 One Week Challange  ›  The Open Casket - OWC
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  Author    The Open Casket - OWC  (currently 6618 views)
Don
Posted: October 15th, 2011, 9:02am Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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The Open Casket by Darren Tomalin (darrenjames) - Short, Gothic Horror - Artist, Charles Drayton, has been commissioned to paint the viscount Corwin Redwinter's portrait at his remote castle in the mountains. Redwinter's intentions towards Drayton's fiancee, Melinda Hartwell, may be less than honorable and the stuff of nightmares. 11 pages, 5 characters, PG Rating - pdf, format


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Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Don  -  October 29th, 2011, 4:58pm
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Pete B. Lane
Posted: October 15th, 2011, 3:16pm Report to Moderator
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A quick, fun read indeed. Solid writing all around. I've read a half dozen scripts now, and this is my favorite so far.

My grade: A

~Pete
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stevie
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Well researched, meticulous period detail and written nicely

BUT...

There is no real feel or emotion to the story. I know there will be a few pure Gothic horror scripts in this challenge and that's fine.
But they need to have something original to make them breathe.

The writer here has used some nice horror refs, like Poe and characters from Stoker( I think)

I dont mean to be disparaging this early in the readings but I skimmed while reading this as there was too much detail and not enough writers voice

Still congrats on your effort


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jwent6688
Posted: October 15th, 2011, 5:07pm Report to Moderator
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Definitely my fave thus far. Very well written. I thought the wife apologizing in the mirror was a nice touch. It foreshadowed things to come for me. Overall, very good entry, I will remember this one...

James


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Ryan1
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This is a classic Gothic horror piece, from the setting to the characters to the madness.  My favorite character by far was Poe, and how he named his instruments of torture.  I like how you went all out on the Goth.

I would liked to have known more about how Corwin initially killed Madeline.  Apparently it was bad enough that Madeline has been waiting for revenge all this time.  And, I did find it rather odd how easily Corwin could converse with her ghost at the beginning.

"Your odious dwarf is dead!"

Now that's what I call a line!

Bloody good ending.  Overall, I enjoyed it.  I think you could have found a way to make Corwin and his castle a bit more distinctive.  And like I mentioned, the backstory of Madeline's death felt like a missing piece of the narrative.  But this was very well done for a week's notice.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: October 15th, 2011, 8:09pm Report to Moderator
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I thought you did a sterling job trying ot capture the Gothic feel.

That being said, this struck me as more Rocky Horror Show than it did truly Gothic "horror". Too many cliches made it slightly comical for me at times....but that's being very, very harsh.

The overall story arc was good, but didn't do a lot for me personally....felt like I'd seen it before and I didn't really care for any of the characters either way..good or bad. I think part of the problem was that they were simply there as guests and had no real drive in the story...the convenience of it sort of over rode the narrative drive.

Still a  good effort that a lot of work clearly went into.

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darrentomalin
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I would like to have seen more of Corwin's past and what actually happened to his wife. Poe was cool and his "pretty ladies" were an original touch.
A bit more detail in the scene descriptions would have added more character to the script.
Good effort.


http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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feat747
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 12:24am Report to Moderator
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I liked it. It had a classic Gothic atmosphere to it. The only thing I suggest is changing the names of Madeline and Melinda. Their names are a bit too similar. I found myself misreading which character is which.


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Electric Dreamer
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 1:39am Report to Moderator
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Good feel from this tale right on page one.
Stout flow, gothic vibe, distinct characters.
Effective descriptions, a refreshing page turner.
Then comes the expository misunderstood ghost scenario.
I’m just about twisted out with ghostly vengeance.
Solid pacing, visual style and crisp action. Kudos.
Thanks for playing OWC.

Regards,
E.D.


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leitskev
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 8:55am Report to Moderator
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Despite being cliche in many ways, this one is BY FAR the best of the bunch so far for me, and I'm about half through the entries.

The execution of the story is polished. Nothing at all to trip or slow the read, believable dialogue, logical story. And the parameters of the OWC are adhered to flawlessly, and yet in a way that will be unique.

We don't know all that much about the characters, but for one thing, this is a short, and for another, when I think of the classic films of this sort, we generally don't know the characters any better than we do here. If the writer chose to expand this to a feature, those characters could easily be fleshed out more, and the writer seems to have the competence to do it.

Like I said, certainly this was very archetypal to put it nicely. The evil dwarf ogre, the poisoned drinks, the dinner where the lord lusts for the young fiance, the secret door into the room, the torture chamber...all of these can be cut and pasted from standard 1950s and 1960s horror movies.

And I would like to see Charles escape in some more respectable way. The current escape just seems like the writer ran out of time or ideas, or space.

Nonetheless, this story easily shoots to the top of my charts until another can knock it off! Nice work.
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Reef Dreamer
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 4:04pm Report to Moderator
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Hello Don,

A sound piece of writing, with good pace and flow.

A small issue but we are in Austria but the language was as expected in the Scottish highlands and I just wondered whether we needed a bit more understanding. Why are they there?

I find it difficult to challenge such good writing but it kind of felt like a hammer house of horror episode where the young lovers end up at a dodgy castle and just escape.

P10 belinda? Did I miss something

Good stuff, strong writing.

All the best.

EDIT NOTE : decided to read this again. Often the reads on the OWC are at night and busy. Not sure I fully appreciated this  first time around. Second time notes are: 1) beautifully written, a joy to read. 2) more depth than I first considered 3) still - how is this different to standard black and White films, other than the explicit nature of the 21 st century. This would be the only criticism.

So the question to me is, how do we differentiate this from a more unusual, maybe creative,  script that is written to a weaker standard? A joy of a question to consider.

All the best again.

I have booked marked this as a how to write. Fab!!


My scripts  HERE

The Elevator Most Belonging To Alice - Semi Final Bluecat, Runner Up Nashville
Inner Journey - Page Awards Finalist - Bluecat semi final
Grieving Spell - winner - London Film Awards.  Third - Honolulu
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IMDb link... http://www.imdb.com/name/nm7062725/?ref_=tt_ov_wr

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Reef Dreamer  -  October 18th, 2011, 2:35pm
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bert
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 5:02pm Report to Moderator
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This one was suggested to me -- and another suggested that perhaps I had written it.

Quite a compliment.  This one is top-notch.  A pastiche of cliches with a few fresh touches, and to me, none of them misses a beat.

The names of Melinda and Madeline are far too similar, however, and you should rename one or the other of these women.  My sole grievance.

And the end?  To me, I think it would be improved were Madeline to retain Melinda's body -- with poor Charles none the wiser as to what had transpired.  Thus, the story adheres even more to its Gothic roots.

Cheers to this author.


Hey, it's my tiny, little IMDb!
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wonkavite
Posted: October 16th, 2011, 5:08pm Report to Moderator
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Dammit, this one was 95-99% perfect!  Clean writing, gothic atmosphere.  Interesting story and characters.  I got worried when Poe pulled out the implements of destruction, afraid that it was going to turn into torture porn.  But it didn't go that far, and the denouement was a great twist in the story.

With just one problem.

Nowhere in the story is it hinted that Madeline has reason to hate her husband.  Drop some legitimate hints, and this script will be perfect (well, maybe change one of the women's names too...Melinda and Melissa are so close as to be confusing.)

Cheers - job well done! (99% anyway..) )))
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grademan
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Thank you for the story. Excellent!

Personally, I think the author chose the two M names on purpose.

Yeah, Wonkavite is right, a little foreshadowing of her hatred would put a shine on this.


Gary
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albinopenguin
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the melinda/madeline thing served as a nice parallel. it was a bit confusing at first, but it worked well in the end.

furthermore, you absolutely nailed the genre on the head. you did your research and it shows. meticulously written for sure.

the dialogue was my favorite part. it was so well written and very reflective of the genre. the only bit i didn't quite feel was the "pretty ladies" part. for some reason, it just didn't sit well with me.

besides that, the best entry so far. A


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Hugh Hoyland
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Okay read it.

Very well written as far as I could tell.

As others have mentioned above you captured the Gothic feel very well. I also agree with others that say the story is bit "been there done that before" but IMO most are, even the more "esoteric" ones.

If this would be filmed it would look Gothic to a tee.

Good Job on getting it done.


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Grandma Bear
Posted: October 17th, 2011, 8:54am Report to Moderator
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I won't have the time to read all of the entries this time so I'm picking and choosing. Noticed some good comments on this one and thought I'd give it a read.

The writing was excellent IMO and the dialogue fit the time and place perfectly. The story was okay. I would have liked to see a little more of the actual portrait painting. Some cool things could have been done with that.

I chuckled when I read the room was filled with antique furniture. What else would there be in 1806 (I think)?

Belinda?

Great work for one week. The best one I've read so far.  

PS. are you sure about the PG rating?


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DarrenJamesSeeley
Posted: October 17th, 2011, 9:42am Report to Moderator
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I don't know if I can add anything to the discussion. The only mild issue I have is the "C' names (Corwin, Coachman, Charles -*why not just "Drayton"?) and the scuffle between Charles and Poe (which kind makes me think of ol' Edgar Alan, but that's not really a bad thing--just a tip of a hat) - which gets a bit wild and winded.

Other than that, I quite enjoyed it.
Would love to see this filmed. Really good stuff.


"I know you want to work for Mo Fuzz. And Mo Fuzz wants you to. But first, I'm going to need to you do something for me... on spec." - Mo Fuzz, Tapeheads, 1988
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Dreamscale
Posted: October 18th, 2011, 1:33pm Report to Moderator
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Wish I would have started with this one.  Very impressive.  Good read.

Pretty well written - a few awkward lines and some incorrect comma use, but leaps and bounds above every other script.  Easy and enjoyable read.

Great Gothic feel and tone.  Good characters, with well thought out dialogue.  With another look and draft, this will be great.

#1 with a bullet!  Great effort!


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Eoin
Posted: October 18th, 2011, 2:27pm Report to Moderator
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This was written by a writer who understood the challenge, did some research and has honed their craft. I have seen, some 'paint by numbers' comments on another thread - that's not what this script is about - this script just looks effortless, it flows.

For those with grand designs and artistic ideals of being liberated and free to express themselves understand the craft first - reading this script is seeing that craft. Very sharp for a weeks work.

There's a genuine sinster sense to this, a real period feel. Under currents of lust, passion and desire right off the bat.

The dialouge has purpose, it moves the story along and has a nice period ring to it.

Page 6 - was this an error, or did I miss something? 'Charles gazes at Madeline, they gush at each other.'

Don't you just want to give Poe a cuddle - 'I prefer my pretty ladies to the machines. You can get closer with the pretty ladies.' Great dialouge.

Great script.

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Sandra Elstree.
Posted: October 18th, 2011, 5:26pm Report to Moderator
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This is very well written and fits with the gothic theme. The only problem I had with it was I swear to G-d I've read it before or had seen it before. I knew what was happening and I knew that our lovely ghost lady was going to go into the body of our female guest.

Why such a long logline inclusive of personal names?

You've done such a splendid job with visuals, might we have some sound, too?

I don't know you know... I feel like this could easily have been something sitting on the shelf and it wasn't pure OWC.

I feel like Stevie. I feel it needs something else to make it special. If I were sitting behind a big desk with my feet up, an unlit cigarette in my hand (because I don't smoke) and a crystal glass full of scotch and rocks, I would say to you,

"What else have ya got?"

And if the next one did for me?

I'd say yes.  

Sandra



A known mistake is better than an unknown truth.
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ReneC
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 2:32pm Report to Moderator
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Your descriptive passages are rock-solid, beautifully written. I love the tone and setting.

The characters are cliché and two-dimensional but that actually works in your favour. We know these characters because we've seen them a thousand times before. The story is what really drives this piece. The twist comes almost without warning, it would actually be better without that single warning of "I'm sorry!" to Melinda. You probably felt it was necessary to satisfy the requirements of the OWC but consider cutting it if you decide to polish this further.

The dialogue, however, is terrible. It tries far too hard to fit the period when it's clear you don't know the language of that period. If you do re-write this you should bring it to a more contemporary setting or conduct a bunch of research to fully grasp Old English before attempting it again.

An excellent read, one of my favourites, despite the poor dialogue. However, this would fail on the screen because of the dialogue. I'd gladly read the rewrite.


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rdhay
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Hi I'll echo what's been said re the names - Melinda and Madeline, Charles and Corwin, and yes, Belinda and Melinda - when you're reading quickly, they kinda blend together a bit, but an easy fix

You did an amazing job at setting the mood - congrats! I admit I was a bit disappointed when it turned into a bloodbath (would've liked to see the psychological torment played out instead), but overall you did a great job
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Dreamscale
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 9:11pm Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


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Reb, why do you have to "read quickly"?  Always a problem, as you'll miss things you shouldn't miss.

IMO, the names are obviously chosen to be alike for a reason. Don't fault the writer for that, as he put alot more time into this than anyone who has spent 15 minutes reading it.

Rene, I'm very surprised you'd comment on the dialogue being poor, or unrealistic.  Is it spot on?  No, of course not. It was written and conceived in a week...probably alot less.  Compared to not 99%, but 100% of the other entries, this is not the script to call out for bad dialogue...IMO, of course.

And no, I did not write this, either.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 9:22pm Report to Moderator
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Whether people consider Dialogue good or bad often depends on how they "act" it out in their head. Choose the wrong voice and it can sound unrealistic, over the top..or whatever, but in reality it may be good, just geared towards a type of performance the reader isn't considering.
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Ledbetter
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 9:28pm Report to Moderator
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Mmmmm...

Script written by Don...

OWC by Don...

Mmmmm...LOL

It was a very nice read. Some times in an OWC, you read one that stands out.

Well done!

Shawn.....><
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Dreamscale
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 9:28pm Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


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Yes, Rick, but let's be clear...there is "good" dialogue, and there is "shit" dialogue.

This is definitely not "shit" dialogue, and therefore, should not be called out, unlessof course, you're goiing to call all the scripts out for their "shit" dialogue.

Know what I'm saying?


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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leitskev
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 9:56pm Report to Moderator
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1806 would not be old, or even medieval English. I've actually read a lot of books and essays from that period, and it's pretty similar to what we hear today, certainly not difficult to understand anyway.

But this is in Austria anyway. So it's English interpretation, whatever that means. I thought it worked.

Also, please note the opening, which done the way I think opening should be done. An opening shot to set the mood and time period, and to be a strong and appealing visual. Then right to the story. No long descriptions of the castle interior. And the very first lines get right to the heart of things. The heart of the story is set up before the end of page one. We have the strong goal of this character, to be with his wife, and we touch on his sin which led to their separation to begin with. Perfect. That's how it's done.
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Dreamscale
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 10:01pm Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


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Exactly!!!

We're back on the same page, Kevin.  Glad to see it.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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leitskev
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 10:13pm Report to Moderator
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I meant no disrespect to Rene's reviews, which I have found to be quite excellent all around this OWC. I just think the dialogue was fine here, that's all. But keep up the good work, Rene!
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rc1107
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Poe by far is the standout character, with his lady tools.  That was fun.

Very well written for the most part, too.  However, I did feel a couple hiccups with the dialogue, though.

"Your odious dwarf is dead!"
"No matter."

Just read stale to me.  So matter of fact.  Not all the dialogue mind you, but just some of it didn't ring true to my ears.  However, I have been very concentrated on dialogue lately, so it could just be me looking too deep into things.  Or it could just be the word odious, because at first, I read it in my head as odorous and I couldn't help but laugh.

Pia brings up a very good point about the furniture.  If this takes place in 1806, wouldn't it still be rather new furniture?  It wouldn't be antique, yet  :-)  I just thought it was a funny point.

I also have to agree that this is the best of the bunch so far.  Excellent job.

Hmm.  Those detailed slugs on the first few pages are making me wonder.  Are people actually starting to listen to Jeff, now, or did he actually enter?

There is one fail in this one, however.  The PG rating.  Just a little too much detail in the violence.  It'll definately pass for a PG-13, though.

Good job on this one.

(Here's a note several hours later after I wrote the original review.  (I read this one this afternoon, but I'm not posting until now.))

I took a look at some of the recent comments about dialogue.  It's not that the dialogue was bad at all, and that's not what I was talking about in my reply.  But I do remember reading lines that didn't seem to match the vibe of the rest of the dialogue.  It seemed off of what we were already hearing.  Besides the one I mentioned above, I can't think of any other examples exactly offhand, but I can point out a few more examples when I do a reread.


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leitskev
Posted: October 19th, 2011, 10:36pm Report to Moderator
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Agreed, Mark, good points.
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Eoin
Posted: October 20th, 2011, 8:07am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from ReneC
Your descriptive passages are rock-solid, beautifully written. I love the tone and setting.

The characters are cliché and two-dimensional but that actually works in your favour. We know these characters because we've seen them a thousand times before. The story is what really drives this piece. The twist comes almost without warning, it would actually be better without that single warning of "I'm sorry!" to Melinda. You probably felt it was necessary to satisfy the requirements of the OWC but consider cutting it if you decide to polish this further.

The dialogue, however, is terrible. It tries far too hard to fit the period when it's clear you don't know the language of that period. If you do re-write this you should bring it to a more contemporary setting or conduct a bunch of research to fully grasp Old English before attempting it again.

An excellent read, one of my favourites, despite the poor dialogue. However, this would fail on the screen because of the dialogue. I'd gladly read the rewrite.


This is set in Austria - from what I understand this is not supposed to have Olde English dialouge, just a period feel - that's exactly what it achieved.
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ReneC
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I'm not going to defend my review and further de-rail this thread. I stand by it, it's up to the author whether or not to accept the note. Based on the contrary views about the dialogue I may very well be in the minority, that's up to the author to decide.


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darrentomalin
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Just ahd a thought - If the room has "antique" furniture, maybe it's antique from the perspective of someone living in the 1800's...  


http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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CindyLKeller
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Wow, I am glad I wasn't able to put my script together for this one because the story I was working on was similar to this one (a man brings his lover back from the dead only for her to kill him at the end).

The writing here is excellent though.  

I think I know who wrote this, too.

I liked the story, but I have to agree with bert about having the girls change places at the end. Maybe show Melinda's tortured eyes in the painting of Madeline???

Very well done though.

Cindy


Award winning screenwriter
Available screenplays
TINA DARLING - 114 page Comedy
ONLY OSCAR KNOWS - 99 page Horror
A SONG IN MY HEART - 94 page Drama
HALLOWEEN GAMES - 105 page Drama
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Breanne Mattson
Posted: October 20th, 2011, 9:02pm Report to Moderator
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Charles and Madeline gush at each other? Think you got a name mixed up. While on the subject of names, I think your names are too similar. Corwin and Charles, Madeline and Melinda. I don’t know if there’s some reason but it gets jumbled.

The bond snapped? Seemed kind of convenient. I guess sometimes you have no choice but still...

The ending was out of nowhere. Madeline wanted revenge? For what? By all accounts, Corwin genuinely loved her.

Overall, it’s got some solid writing but needs a little more development, both with characters and with story. Good effort, though.


Breanne


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Sandra Elstree.
Posted: October 20th, 2011, 9:09pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from grademan
Thank you for the story. Excellent!

Personally, I think the author chose the two M names on purpose.

Yeah, Wonkavite is right, a little foreshadowing of her hatred would put a shine on this.


Gary


Me too, Gary. And even as it is, it's got loads of shine!

Sandra



A known mistake is better than an unknown truth.
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mcornetto
Posted: October 20th, 2011, 9:23pm Report to Moderator
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Oh, I liked that.  

Obviously someone was watching a lot of Vincent Price movies.  Once I pictured Vincent Price as Corwin the whole thing worked for me.  

Well done - I think I know who you are -  good job for a week.  

My fav so far.
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TheUsualSuspect
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 1:51am Report to Moderator
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I finished this and said "Hey, where was the ghost?" Since it was like possession and not true "ghost" for me.
Gothic tone was nailed.

Dialogue was great, I had a fun time reading it.

Very descriptive, I pictured everything perfectly.

Good job.


A Picture Is Worth

If you want me to read your script, send me a link.
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dogglebe
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 9:19am Report to Moderator
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This was very well written, IMHO.  The darkness, the fear, suspense, it all came out nicely.  It had a very nice build up (maybe a little slow at first).  


SPOILER

I wasn't happy with Madeline blindsiding her husband the way she did.  She, supposedly, loved him and out of the blue, she hates him.  I know women change their minds like that, but this one is dead.


Phil
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Grandma Bear
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 9:45am Report to Moderator
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This one is my favorite of the ones I've read. When can we start guessing who wrote what?


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leitskev
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 10:31am Report to Moderator
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Top of my list still, too. I still have I think 9 more to read. In theory, there are other scripts that could have a more interesting premise or might intrigue a producer, but this is the only script I've read that really executes the way a script should. Some things to tweak, but IMHO, this one is rock solid, and the only one that is.
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darrentomalin
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 11:41am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from dogglebe

I wasn't happy with Madeline blindsiding her husband the way she did.  She, supposedly, loved him and out of the blue, she hates him.  I know women change their minds like that, but this one is dead.


I think she had to blindside him, otherwise he wouldn't have gone ahead with the ceremony and she would never be able to get her revenge.
Could have done with a few more clues to the audience that she was planning to betray him, she had waited 16 years for revenge and had to tread carefully.
But then, that was the twist, that she only wanted to "come back" to exact revenge. The fact she released Madeline after the deed was done indicates that she isn't evil, just vengeful.  Thats why she apologised, knowing that she would have to perform a terrible deed through Madeline.
Daz



http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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bert
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 11:45am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from dogglebe
I wasn't happy with Madeline blindsiding her husband the way she did.


To the author's credit, early in the script he has Corwin ask, "And forgiveness?"

Implying that he has done something that needs to be forgiven.

And we can assume she is still holding a grudge, it would seem.

So the author does try to at least hint at this, and I think given more pages (and a little more time), this aspect of the story would have been fleshed out a bit better.


Hey, it's my tiny, little IMDb!
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RayW
Posted: October 21st, 2011, 11:42pm Report to Moderator
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Locations & Sets  -   Mountain range castle with turrets (matte/CGI), INT. great fireplace study, EXT castle courtyard, grand entrance hall with stairwell and general castle furnishings, guest room with opulent furnishings, INT. Crypt, INT Dining hall, INT. torture chamber
Actors  -  CORWIN (40s), MADELINE's voice, COACHMAN (50), CHARLES (28 ), MELINDA (17), POE (40)
Costumes  -  1806 Austrian Viscount, Charles and Melinda's period dress, Poe's uniform
Props  -  Dour portraits x12, wingbacked chair, wine & glass, gargoyles and stone angels, oil lamp, room lamps x 4, casket w/ "contents", Madeline portrait version 1 & 2, dining hall place settings w/ glasses, decanter w/ wine, mirror, false wall with sliding door, long gold chain necklace with giant ruby setting, torture chamber accouterments, array of foul metal devices, wooden strapping pole, leather binding straps, gore soaked table, mutilated/eviscerated coachman remains, stunt knife
Audio FX  -  breeze, howling wind, storm wind and lightning, knife clatter, steel cutting flesh
Visual FX  -  lightning, circling crows, CGI/greenscreen two black horses and carriage to castle via mountain road, breeze into fire, mirror crack, blood running on Madeline, swirling dust effect, hook through neck, Corwin's throat slit and blood
Other  -  gotta get a fire going! big fan for blowing in curtains, might need MUA for Madeline in mirror, bright lights for lightning flashes, MUA for cheek hook rip, wirework for supernatural pounce, wirework Charles lift by throat
Comments  -  Dinner at seven, pg 3. Must be summer! Ha - page 5! The Melinda/Madeline thing would likely be fine on screen, but in writing some may get confused with the (likely purposeful) alliteration on your behalf. Turn off your program's dialog (CONT’D) feature. This one is just a wee pricey for a short, but just dandy for a Stephen Sommers flick. Oh, and this is definitely NOT a PG rated short. It's an R.



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Sandra Elstree.
Posted: October 22nd, 2011, 12:01am Report to Moderator
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I have chosen this as my # 1. It gave me everything I would desire and expect from a gothic piece. As I mentioned before, (and Phil has generously given his knowledge of the subject too and is much appreciated by me) this really worked with the environment of gothic as we (I) would typically feel and understand it...

Not that it needs to be castles and such, but this piece delivered.

The portrait smiling in the end was a strong visual. It wouldn't have worked if it were just pasted on, but it wasn't. The writer has earned any praise he/she is given and...

The rosy feeling we get when the portrait smiles only comes (we know) because the writer did one helluva good job!!!!!

Sandra



A known mistake is better than an unknown truth.
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darrentomalin
Posted: October 22nd, 2011, 12:10am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from RayW
Locations & Sets  -   Mountain range castle with turrets (matte/CGI), INT. great fireplace study, EXT castle courtyard, grand entrance hall with stairwell and general castle furnishings, guest room with opulent furnishings, INT. Crypt, INT Dining hall, INT. torture chamber
Actors  -  CORWIN (40s), MADELINE's voice, COACHMAN (50), CHARLES (28 ), MELINDA (17), POE (40)
Costumes  -  1806 Austrian Viscount, Charles and Melinda's period dress, Poe's uniform
Props  -  Dour portraits x12, wingbacked chair, wine & glass, gargoyles and stone angels, oil lamp, room lamps x 4, casket w/ "contents", Madeline portrait version 1 & 2, dining hall place settings w/ glasses, decanter w/ wine, mirror, false wall with sliding door, long gold chain necklace with giant ruby setting, torture chamber accouterments, array of foul metal devices, wooden strapping pole, leather binding straps, gore soaked table, mutilated/eviscerated coachman remains, stunt knife
Audio FX  -  breeze, howling wind, storm wind and lightning, knife clatter, steel cutting flesh
Visual FX  -  lightning, circling crows, CGI/greenscreen two black horses and carriage to castle via mountain road, breeze into fire, mirror crack, blood running on Madeline, swirling dust effect, hook through neck, Corwin's throat slit and blood
Other  -  gotta get a fire going! big fan for blowing in curtains, might need MUA for Madeline in mirror, bright lights for lightning flashes, MUA for cheek hook rip, wirework for supernatural pounce, wirework Charles lift by throat
Comments  -  Dinner at seven, pg 3. Must be summer! Ha - page 5! The Melinda/Madeline thing would likely be fine on screen, but in writing some may get confused with the (likely purposeful) alliteration on your behalf. Turn off your program's dialog (CONT’D) feature. This one is just a wee pricey for a short, but just dandy for a Stephen Sommers flick. Oh, and this is definitely NOT a PG rated short. It's an R.


This is awesome!  I agree with the PG but there is no profanity and the gore (poe getting stabbed, using the knives, impaled on the hook) is as visceral as you want to imagine/film it.  
The disemboweled Coachman could be filmed from the side.
I got a definite 'Hammer' feel from this, rarely an 18 cert (by today's standards!)
Oh, and If anyone does want to film this, they can use my castle as the location... bwahahahahaha!


http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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Dreamscale
Posted: October 22nd, 2011, 9:36am Report to Moderator
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I would definitely give this an "R" rating, as well.

Using "(CON'T)" for dialogue being spoken by the same person, broken up by action/description lines is not incorrect.  I see that some writers here are against it and say it's something that isn't used anymore, but in reality, it's a personal choice, and in a Spec script, I feel it is a good thing, as it helps with the read, keeps things 100% clear, and also really helps in a table read.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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greg
Posted: October 22nd, 2011, 4:49pm Report to Moderator
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I've been seeing everyone raving about this one.  I thought it was good but nothing ground breaking.  

Why is Madeline out for revenge?  I figured Corwin would get his but he goes through the trouble to try and bring Madeline back only to get his ass kicked.  Why?  

Who's Belinda?  1800s lingo?

The torture route was also meh, mostly because Charles makes a freakishly convenient escape from Poe.  I will say this - usually with the horror OWC's there's tons of torture pornographies but this one's been pretty tame.  For this script the atmosphere of the torture chamber was almost a character in itself, so that was cool.

It's flawlessly written and polished, quality-wise top notch.  Story-wise I've seen it before.

Nice job anyway.

Greg


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SpecialAgentDaleCooper
Posted: October 23rd, 2011, 10:45am Report to Moderator
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This is exquisite. I noted a few errors, nothing too severe and nothing that hasn't already been addressed, so I've really nothing new to offer in terms of feedback.

Just...well done!
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Leon
Posted: October 24th, 2011, 1:45pm Report to Moderator
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Wonderfully written and executed.  Hats off to you.

An enjoyable story, it was familiar and lacked a sense of originality, but it captured the gothic vibe superbly, what more can you ask for.

I didn't think the twist carried enough of an impact though, mainly because there wasn't much depth or details given into the nature of the Melinda's betrayal (or vice versa).  I think there is only one line of dialogue in the script which foreshadows it.

Great work.


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Scoob
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Writing is excellent here, such a great use of words. Same with dialogue, I thought it all sounded very apt in a hammer horror way! I got a serious Prince Of Darkness vibe for the second time in the OWK - not a bad thing at all.

Not much to not like, although I thought it was a bit predictable. That said, I didn't see the twist coming and unless I missed something, I suppose its down to the imagination what Corwin did to Madeline to give her reason for revenge.

Good job.




Revision History (1 edits)
Scoob  -  October 25th, 2011, 9:11pm
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Quiou
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I have no comment concerning this script. I loved it. Great job. The story is good and the atmosphere gothic.
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rdhay
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Quoted from Dreamscale
Reb, why do you have to "read quickly"?  Always a problem, as you'll miss things you shouldn't miss.


It's not so much about having to, just that when the pacing of the script compels you to read faster and then you stumble over character names that are too similar, it kinda takes you out of the read a bit, IMO

Yes, I'm definitely thinking you wrote this one...
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Dreamscale
Posted: October 27th, 2011, 7:43pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from rdhay
Yes, I'm definitely thinking you wrote this one...


Who...me?  I thought I didn't enter a script this time around...





To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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rdhay
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Quoted from Dreamscale


Who...me?  I thought I didn't enter a script this time around...





Haha, yeah, cuz you would NEVER try to pull one over on unsuspecting (read: looking for an excuse not to have to submit a lame entry) SS members
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Ectoplasm
Posted: October 29th, 2011, 5:31pm Report to Moderator
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I really enjoyed this from beginning to end. I thought Poe was great, both disturbing and threatening. It was very well written in my opinion, and I could vision everything happening onscreen.
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Grandma Bear
Posted: October 29th, 2011, 6:37pm Report to Moderator
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Congratulations to the win! Well deserved.


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Sandra Elstree.
Posted: October 29th, 2011, 7:09pm Report to Moderator
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Darren, your logline really sucked the big banana!!!!!!!!!  

But you bloody well nailed a good script!!!

I hope you are gearing up for one big time Halloween celebration!!!! Rock on!!!!



Sandra



A known mistake is better than an unknown truth.
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darrentomalin
Posted: October 31st, 2011, 11:38am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Sandra Elstree.
Darren, your logline really sucked the big banana!!!!!!!!!  



LOL I know, it's on the (long) list of things to improve and look into.



http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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Sandra Elstree.
Posted: October 31st, 2011, 9:11pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from darrentomalin


LOL I know, it's on the (long) list of things to improve and look into.



Wella, my list stretches on to eternity. I might wind up spending a lot of time in Izabiza Castle. Maybe if I play it right, I can get some time roaming the streets at night, (you know, reward for good behavior). Wait, that really didn't sound right. Just had a "Pretty Woman" image in my head.   ... fun is subjective. Or is it?!

Sandra




A known mistake is better than an unknown truth.
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darrentomalin
Posted: October 31st, 2011, 10:10pm Report to Moderator
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Yes, fun is subjective, from a certain point of view.


http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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