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I've heard the advice about cutting those. I know. Every script I write tends not to have them. This script, on the other hand, was written with a certain looseness in mind when it comes to the "rules" of screenwriting. Yes, directions can be annoying, I know.
Mostly, I cut them all out in the second draft after I've done a more "visual" first draft. But, as you can tell, I didn't get that far yet.
I wont read script with that in there,UNLESS this script is being turned into a REAL movie. Writers here are to write SPEC scripts. SPEC scripts DO NOT have camera directions. Good luck finding someone to review, that wont tell you the same about the directions...
I started this, and I hope to finish it, but I have to say, I'm not horibly tempted. The dialogue is pretty weak, and everytime Rifkin talks to himself, you lose me. Everything he says to himself is exposition, and should come out later in the script (if at all) and through dialogue. Another problem with Rifkin is that I think he is suposed to be badass, but when he's trying to be tough, he comes off as stupid, and NOT funny. Decide if this is an action film, or a bad comedy. If it's action get rid of his stupid remarks, and put in a few powerlines. (For a refreshher on powerlines, watch Army Of Darkness) Finally, the script is moving much to slowly for me to stay with it. I say remove Davis, start Rifkin with his job already, change Leo so that he and Rifkin get along, and make Scarelli more of a father figure to Rifkin, than a mob boss who can offer protection.
As for the comments in action like "Not a good time..." and "Fucking physics" it is my honest opinion that this will either make or break a reading of this by a production company (if it gets that far). It adds a funny kind of style to teh script, but DOES NOTHING TO PROGRESS THE STORY. Every single word--be it action, dialogue, parantheticals, whatever--needs to further the story in some way.
The only reason I want to continue is because it's a good tagline. I hope it gets better, and I'll let you know as I continue.
I really enjoyed reading this. Rifkin's witty remarks is what makes him likeable character. The only thing that had me confused is how he and Elaine fell in love so quickly. Maybe I missed something. Overall all, I thought that it was very interesting and original.
This is my first review, so I’m going to throw as much as I can at you. So take it with a grain of salt and hopefully something I say causes at least a little spark. Opening line. Make it better. Who actually says this line? I think its Davis but it could be Rifkin. I think you need to have Davis sum up the entire movie in your first line. Davis “You’re about to be dragged through the shit-holes of hell my friend.” Again here’s another example. Davis “You thought you’d f**k with me, now I’m f**in with you.” (crash, bang, bam!) Rifkin “ow, come on give me a break.” Davis “I’m givin you a break you prick.” They slam the trunk and push the car, as Davis shoots bullet holes in the trunk. Davis “Give my regards to the Devil mother F***er.” Maybe have him thrown into the trunk while the screen is black and all we hear are the words and the sound effects of Rifkin getting beat. (I’m throwing examples of what I might do, ways I might tighten it up, its your script & you get final say. The way I look at it is, for myself, If something is the way I want it and its for a reason, I probably wont change it. But the further I get away from my script the more I’m opt to change something.) P.11 The feds are watching Scorelli? Why? Just for realism? Use it or lose it. P.12 Georgie calling from jail? Unrealistic. Maybe have him paroled or this is his last day. It’s very hard to believe Georgie would be talking to Scorelli on a prison phone, without the feds listening in. If this was the past, then fine, but with the tech gadgets, it doesn’t fly. This is your Plot Hook. It needs to be stronger. Use tech gadgets to blackout the prison and have the Germans get busted out by other terrorist Germans, and Georgie gets away too. Something with the tech. P.17 Rifkin vs. Georgie, sick. Again, not necessary. p. 21 Ed “what are my orders.” This tells me Ed works for Reinheit. Parallel this with p.57 Reinheit needs to grab Ed not Cal. Show us what a bad-as* Reinheit is, and he’s not afraid to screw with Ed the assassin. P. 60 Int. Motel Room – Night. I’m all thinking he’s going to jump all over her. It made no sense to me. It’s almost like Rifkin is about to change, but I (we) haven’t seen or felt it yet. Maybe I missed something but I don’t get his change here. Maybe he should have sex with her, and then change. Or gets started, he thinks of some other girl then can’t get it up, or has second thoughts or something. Basically Rifkin panicking when it comes to women doesn’t seem to be the same Rifkin that got put into the trunk for sleeping with someone’s wife. P.66 Line is perfect. “You could have any man you want…” P.78 She doesn’t know who said it, “when bad meets evil.” So make Rifkin use this as his own line, instead of quoting the other guy. P.95 Cal should wrestle with Isobel, before she kills him with the panty line. I really loved this part, but I think they need to confront each other here, mono to mono. It was a let down not seeing this fight last longer. Have them really go at it while dangling from the wires. Maybe even almost to the ground, reaching for a gun or something. P.96 Have Ed say a final word to Cals dead body as he leaves the scene. Maybe even make them related. “so long my cousin. Or brother. It might explain why Ed put up with Cal. This could put Ed further over the edge. P.114 Helicopter battle, necessary? P.119 Ed dies. Rifkin gets the info from him. How does Ed know this? Ending. The final words. I feel they are very important. Pop stand? Simply change him to say the words after the cart crashes to the ground. Rifkin “okay then, lets blow this pop stand.” Elaine “I don’t blow pop stands.” Rifkin “What do you…”
There’s a lot of potential, with just a few minor tweaks here and there. After reading through the whole thing I like the story a lot. It needs to be tighter. Rifkin needs something extra. I feel he’s missing a feature, like Dirty Harry’s gun, Indy’s whip. A quirk like Wilson from Castaway. Even use his notebook he keeps notes in. Make him draw things or write poetry. Something to let us in to the inner Rifkin. He conquers his past and is now ready (changed) to take on the bad guys, and get the girl. You mention he used to smoke. And you have him writing and taking notes in a little notebook. You could expand one of these ideas. Example, if he carried around a flint lighter because he used to smoke. And smoking reminds him of someone (a girl) who is dead. Rifkin “I haven’t smoked in two years.” Maybe even have Isobel about to light up in bed while trying to seduce him, he’s about to jump all over here, and then her lighting up reminds him of his past dead girl. He has a quick flashback, and changes his mind about sex. Then later, after Isobel dies, he throws away the lighter, which he has carried around like a reminder. Getting over both his smoking habit, and his sadness for his old girls death. Thus changing, now able to be with Elaine. Germans and the Police and the Feds? Can you get the other two to play a role? I reread the prison Georgie part again. Ed walks into the prison, shoots people and Georgie. Then gets Georgie to say Rifkins name. Have the Germans escape from prison, Georgie does to. Have Georgie find Rifkin as Ed finds Georgie. How does Ed Know about Georgie? Reinhiet? Davis and the Germans need to be integrated more, (come full circle), play a part, if possible. The Hook needs to be stronger to snag a big production fish. If you strengthen the plot hook (Plot point one) (PPI) the audience will follow you wherever you and Rifkin take them.
Email me back and let me know your thoughts, and what exactly your hook is. And if anything I said was useful or too much, or too negative. So hopefully I can work on getting better. Peace out: JoeM
My scripts: Starfall Love trouble on family game night