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  Author    Max's Traveling Carnival  (currently 11355 views)
Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 12th, 2012, 7:17am Report to Moderator
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Thanks Stevie

Dammit. Hopefully, it's not that bad. :/
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Grandma Bear
Posted: March 12th, 2012, 9:39am Report to Moderator
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Gabe, I read through the first 10 pages. I'll continued on later today. At this point in the story, I do want to know what's going to happen next and where this story is heading. I want to know what Max, Zane and Nathaniel are up to. So that's all good. I do think however, that you have way too many things going on in these 1st few pages. I have lost track of how many people you have introduced and I am also not sure who our protagonist is and who the antagonist is. And although, I liked Smiley's entry, I'm sitting here wondering what happened to him? I thought he would be an important character, but after his break dance he disappeared.

The following are some comments I made while reading. I hope they can be of some help.

Page 1. Past, not pass.

Long beer bottle? Do you mean long neck beer bottle. Just a nitpick since I'm trying to get a good visual over the place. The way I 1st read it, I thought it was some special bottle that was extra long.

Page 2. Past, not pass.

Little bit confused about the montage here. Smiley has just got here, is he already performing? If so, is it in front of an audience?

Page 3. Max comes out to loud applause. A slight confusion here again. The way it reads right now, is that Max enters the stage as well and there is loud applause. Who is applauding? Is there an audience there? Or do you mean that Max applauds Smiley?

In your earlier descriptions of the Carnival, Max pointed out various areas of the carnival. There was no mention of people other than some of the carnival employees. I got the feeling that they were walking through the carnival during off hours. Now we have Ben and Julie walking around in the rides and games area. I think you need to mention earlier if this place is full of people or not in order for the readers to get a better idea of this place.

Your descriptions of Ben and Julie doesn't really say anything about them. And, is Julie's beautiful butterfly barrette important to the story or her character?

It has been a while now since Smiley entered the scene. He's been shown around the carnival and did some breakdancing in the big tent. Yet, those kids are just now mentioning him. Ben's comment that the clown is so cool would have fitted better if he had said it when Smiley landed rather than way after the fact.

Medium length hairstyles? That is not a hairstyle. That is just the length of hair and again adds nothing to the story or describes the character. Also, did Eleanor just show up or was she walking next to Julie this whole time?

You say that Eleanor scowls at everything on their left side, but you don't tell us what is on the left side. So far I do not like Eleanor at all. I'm guessing that is your intent however.

Page 4. Julie sticks her tongue out at Ben. I thought she was 13.

The regenerator dude is pretty impressive! Since this is going to be horror, I think that was a good choice to add that here. My only gripe here is that I think you should give us the audience response to his act before you move on to the next performer. It is an impressive act so I imagine an audience going wild or at least being amazed.

Page 5. Your description of the strongman works, however, your description of candidate one is pretty bad. 45-year-old mother wearing a sleeveless shirt… And why did you describe the mother as candidate one when the following woman is described by name? And Angela is wearing a longsleeved shirt. Is this significant to the story? If it is then it's all right, but if it's only a description of the person then it is not.

In your series of shots, instead of saying she meets up with her husband, you should say candidates one meets up with her husband. Same for the next shot, you should say candidate one and her husband eat hotdogs. And ditto that for the rest of the shots as well.

Page 6. I think int. and ext. are only used in slug lines/scene headings, not to describe what is shown on a computer screen. It seems very odd to see that written into the regular sentence. Just right interior and exterior of trailers.

Why write a few centimeters to the side of the laptop is a walkie-talkie? What's wrong with next to the laptop is a walkie-talkie?

You have a lot of pullbacks on this page. How far can you really pull back?

Page 7. Nathaniel's name should be in capital letters when he is 1st mentioned.

If I was watching this on film, how would I know that Nathaniel is the head honcho? And how can we tell that he's a middle-aged man just by his voice.

Page 8. On this page we meet Grace Galloway. She introduces herself as Heather. Is this a typo or is she lying?

Wherever is one word.

Page 9. Gabe, you really need to work on your people descriptions.  

Here is where it gets odd again. You have a new scene with new people in it. You'd describe the people and what they're doing, but there was no mention at all about Max and grace. So when Aster asks, who is she, it reads very weird because I had no idea that they had been watching Max and grace.
At first I thought you meant that that the Carney was who she was referring to.

Page 10. You described Daniel and Ben hanging out by the porta potties. That's pretty funny. Probably better to describe them as waiting.


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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 12th, 2012, 11:35am Report to Moderator
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Thanks Pia.

SPOILERS!


Quoted Text
Gabe, I read through the first 10 pages. I'll continued on later today. At this point in the story, I do want to know what's going to happen next and where this story is heading. I want to know what Max, Zane and Nathaniel are up to. So that's all good. I do think however, that you have way too many things going on in these 1st few pages. I have lost track of how many people you have introduced and I am also not sure who our protagonist is and who the antagonist is. And although, I liked Smiley's entry, I'm sitting here wondering what happened to him? I thought he would be an important character, but after his break dance he disappeared.


I structured this script to follow four characters: Max, Daniel, Angela, and Aster.  They develop two big storylines: Daniel's relationship with his ex-wife and Nathanial vs. Leonard.  I'll see what I can do to make the opening more clearer and less clustering.  

Smiley pops in the script. He has a unique character bio that hopefully you will like. If not, let me know.  


Quoted Text
The following are some comments I made while reading. I hope they can be of some help.


All of this helps. From Jeff, Stevie, you, and any others who want to contribute.


Quoted Text
Page 1. Past, not pass.


I'll fix this. Like I explained to Jeff, tried to make everything present tense as it's happening.


Quoted Text
Long beer bottle? Do you mean long neck beer bottle. Just a nitpick since I'm trying to get a good visual over the place. The way I 1st read it, I thought it was some special bottle that was extra long.


I was thinking of a wine bottle but preferred going with a alcohol bottle since I thought it will give some detail about his character b.g.


Quoted Text
Little bit confused about the montage here. Smiley has just got here, is he already performing? If so, is it in front of an audience?


Smiley is the first performer and he is performing in front of an audience. We are represented as the camera in first pov. I did this for budgetary reasons (avoid getting extras when it's not necessary). trying to keep the budget down.  


Quoted Text
Your descriptions of Ben and Julie doesn't really say anything about them. And, is Julie's beautiful butterfly barrette important to the story or her character?


Like I said before, I sometimes get descriptions right, other times not so right. lol. I'll work on it. Especially for the family.


Quoted Text
It has been a while now since Smiley entered the scene. He's been shown around the carnival and did some breakdancing in the big tent. Yet, those kids are just now mentioning him. Ben's comment that the clown is so cool would have fitted better if he had said it when Smiley landed rather than way after the fact.


I wanted to set up the world where Daniel's story takes place in the beginning.


Quoted Text
Eleanor just show up or was she walking next to Julie this whole time?


Elenore and Daniel have been walking alongside Ben and Julie. i write as a I view in my director's eye. Hence, alot of detail that shouldn't be in.   


Quoted Text
You say that Eleanor scowls at everything on their left side, but you don't tell us what is on the left side. So far I do not like Eleanor at all. I'm guessing that is your intent however.


She's scowling at the area she's in. Nothing specific just the area in general. Also, she's avoid looking at Daniel whose on her right side. Wanted to show how much they dislike one another.

I wanted you to dislike her since this is Daniel's story. Show you what Daniel has to deal with.


Quoted Text
Page 4. Julie sticks her tongue out at Ben. I thought she was 13.


Wanted to show her relationship with Ben. Their childish. I prob have to ffix that so.  


Quoted Text
The regenerator dude is pretty impressive! Since this is going to be horror, I think that was a good choice to add that here. My only gripe here is that I think you should give us the audience response to his act before you move on to the next performer. It is an impressive act so I imagine an audience going wild or at least being amazed.


See? Some characters just come too me. Glad you liked him. Hope you like the other ones.

Budget. I think we already know what's expected from the people's reactions so i decided to not include it.  


Quoted Text
Page 5. Your description of the strongman works, however, your description of candidate one is pretty bad. 45-year-old mother wearing a sleeveless shirt� And why did you describe the mother as candidate one when the following woman is described by name? And Angela is wearing a longsleeved shirt. Is this significant to the story? If it is then it's all right, but if it's only a description of the person then it is not.


Candidiate One doesn't matter. Angela does cause of her ability. The clothing matters since Angela needs to touch candidate one to use her ability.


Quoted Text
In your series of shots, instead of saying she meets up with her husband, you should say candidates one meets up with her husband. Same for the next shot, you should say candidate one and her husband eat hotdogs. And ditto that for the rest of the shots as well.


I get what your saying. I'll probably mention Candidate one in the first shot and the rest she.


Quoted Text
Page 6. I think int. and ext. are only used in slug lines/scene headings, not to describe what is shown on a computer screen. It seems very odd to see that written into the regular sentence. Just right interior and exterior of trailers.


Was trying to keep things short. Fight for those white spaces.


Quoted Text
Why write a few centimeters to the side of the laptop is a walkie-talkie? What's wrong with next to the laptop is a walkie-talkie?


My detail. Will eliminate.


Quoted Text
You have a lot of pullbacks on this page. How far can you really pull back?


Wanted to show Zane's character a bit. He's very detailed.


Quoted Text
Page 7. Nathaniel's name should be in capital letters when he is 1st mentioned.

If I was watching this on film, how would I know that Nathaniel is the head honcho? And how can we tell that he's a middle-aged man just by his voice.


Nathaniel give cell phones to those he finds important. But I'll see if I can include more in dialogue.


Quoted Text
Page 8. On this page we meet Grace Galloway. She introduces herself as Heather. Is this a typo or is she lying?


She's lying.


Quoted Text
Here is where it gets odd again. You have a new scene with new people in it. You'd describe the people and what they're doing, but there was no mention at all about Max and grace. So when Aster asks, who is she, it reads very weird because I had no idea that they had been watching Max and grace. At first I thought you meant that that the Carney was who she was referring to.


I'll see what I can do.


Quoted Text
Page 10. You described Daniel and Ben hanging out by the porta potties. That's pretty funny. Probably better to describe them as waiting.


Thanks Pia. Thankfully I still have your interest. Hopefully that lasts.

I will keep all these reviews in mind when I plan my next rewrite. All of it is appreciated.

Gabe

P.S. You all do know that if you have something you want read, let me know and I'll review it.

Revision History (1 edits)
Mr.Ripley  -  March 12th, 2012, 11:51am
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Grandma Bear
Posted: March 13th, 2012, 1:42pm Report to Moderator
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Gabe,

I reached page 20 today. That is all I have time for today. I'm sorry to be breaking this up in such short pieces. I will read another 10 tomorrow. I have to be honest with you though. This glory is getting more and more confusing. I think you have too many characters, way too many actually. Character seems to come and go and new ones keep popping up all the time. I have no idea who is important and who I need to follow and pay attention to. I know you explained some of this in your early response to my previous comments, however, a screenplay should not have to be explained. If the story needs to be explained a lot then you didn't do a good job with the telling of your story. I hate to say this because I know you have been working hard on this, but I feel that it's crucial that I'm honest too.

I just reread your log line and I think that explains why this story seem to be getting off track. The log line says, A father has to team up with his children and ex-wife to escape a fun house. In other words, this story is about Daniel and his kids and his ex-wife. Daniel, as the protagonist should be in almost every single scene. we only get occasional glimpses of him.

We'll see what happens tomorrow. Maybe things will straighten themselves out.

Page 11. I find Daniels last piece of dialogue to be very weird. Would a father really say that to one of his kids? He is always going to love his kids even if they turn out to be like their mother? That makes Daniel sound like a complete idiot. I would rework that piece of dialogue if I were you.

Page 12. You have one scene heading that is followed by one description. Top left side. Top left side of what?

I noticed this school description of Angela earlier too. You write that she � preps herself�. What does that mean?

Page 13. Again you have a series of shots where you just referred to the people in the shots as either he or she. For clarification and ease of reading you should name them by proper name.

I am not sure who wavy haired man is, but if he's going to be part of this story which he seems like he will since he says I'm here to take you home should probably have a proper name.

Also, during those series of shots, I'm not quite sure I know what happened exactly.

Okay, I'm starting to get a little confused. Why did the wavy haired man show up and show Angela a picture? And why are the others suddenly after him and Angela?

Page 16. And now we have a gray-haired man too...

It is true that we should avoid exposition in dialogue, but some explanation of what is going on here if necessary I feel. I feel lost with these jumps between series of shots of things that have either happened or will happen and now we also have stored memories.

Page 17. You haven't scene heading and the 1st line of description after that is � getting the gist, Zane closes his eyes. That line feels extremely weird to come directly after a slug line.

Page 18. Did I miss something here? Zane says to Max, killing you was only for her benefit. Now I'm lost Gabe. Did someone try to kill Max and failed or is he dead? He doesn't seem dead so what exactly does Zane means by that statement?

Another odd start for an action paragraph. You write that this is the middle area. You need to describe these areas better, because it's hard for me to try to visualize what the middle area is. Why not just state that Patrick and Aster stand near this or that? That would help get a better idea of the scene and situation.

You described Gabe as a nerd and then you described his brother Danny as a popular guy. How can he be a popular guy when he is a ghost and nobody can see or hear him?

Page 20. I'm starting to see more and more typos. That is why I'm not mentioning them anymore.

Smiley sort of reminds me of Harpo Marx. That's actually a good thing.

Smiley entered this script in a grand way and I remember Max welcoming him to the carnival. Now all of a sudden, and it is sudden because not much time has passed yet, he seems to be in cahoots with Max and Zane. How did that all happen?


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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 13th, 2012, 2:42pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks Pia,

Sorry that its becoming like a chore for you. If you want to stop, I won't hold it against you. I'm working on another script at the moment but will come back to this to edit. I appreciate it that your reviewing it and giving your honest opinion. That's what I want.


Quoted Text
I reached page 20 today. That is all I have time for today. I'm sorry to be breaking this up in such short pieces. I will read another 10 tomorrow. I have to be honest with you though. This glory is getting more and more confusing. I think you have too many characters, way too many actually. Character seems to come and go and new ones keep popping up all the time. I have no idea who is important and who I need to follow and pay attention to. I know you explained some of this in your early response to my previous comments, however, a screenplay should not have to be explained. If the story needs to be explained a lot then you didn't do a good job with the telling of your story. I hate to say this because I know you have been working hard on this, but I feel that it's crucial that I'm honest too.


This is a superheroes type of script like Xmen. That's why there are so many characters. I even gave some of these characters more powers to reduce the number of characters. It also shows their importance.  

The Wavy hair man or Grey hair man are not important. That's why I gave them those types of names.

There are also secondary storylines going on to create tension. Like Grace and Wavy Hair man, Grey haired man are trying to get Angela out. That interferes with Max's plans. That creates tension.      


Quoted Text
I just reread your log line and I think that explains why this story seem to be getting off track. The log line says, A father has to team up with his children and ex-wife to escape a fun house. In other words, this story is about Daniel and his kids and his ex-wife. Daniel, as the protagonist should be in almost every single scene. we only get occasional glimpses of him.


I admit his essential, but I'm also trying to explain why he's essential in this story. It's more than just getting along with his wife.

Like I mentioned before, there's two big storylines going on here. I'm trying to develop Daniel since he's a important character in this piece but also develop the bigger picture which is Leonard vs. Nathanial. I have some sequels in mind for this.  But you do have a point about making Daniel more important for this piece so I'll see what I can do.  


Quoted Text
Page 11. I find Daniels last piece of dialogue to be very weird. Would a father really say that to one of his kids? He is always going to love his kids even if they turn out to be like their mother? That makes Daniel sound like a complete idiot. I would rework that piece of dialogue if I were you.


I meant that has humor. Never going to write comedy.


Quoted Text
Page 12. You have one scene heading that is followed by one description. Top left side. Top left side of what?


This goes to me being very specific. . Wanted to show where in the area the booth is located. I'll delete that.


Quoted Text
I noticed this school description of Angela earlier too. You write that she � preps herself�. What does that mean?


She has a regimen before doing her thing. She breathes, holds her breathe and then touches. I did this with Candidate One. I didn't want to repeat that so came up with "she preps herself".

Page 13. Again you have a series of shots where you just referred to the people in the shots as either he or she. For clarification and ease of reading you should name them by proper name.

Alright. Fair point. Will do.


Quoted Text
I am not sure who wavy haired man is, but if he's going to be part of this story which he seems like he will since he says I'm here to take you home should probably have a proper name.


He's not.  


Quoted Text
Also, during those series of shots, I'm not quite sure I know what happened exactly.


She saw his future.


Quoted Text
Okay, I'm starting to get a little confused. Why did the wavy haired man show up and show Angela a picture? And why are the others suddenly after him and Angela?


This out of behavior for Angela. Zane keeps a watchful eye. I established early on with the video surveillance system.


Quoted Text
Page 16. And now we have a gray-haired man too...

It is true that we should avoid exposition in dialogue, but some explanation of what is going on here if necessary I feel. I feel lost with these jumps between series of shots of things that have either happened or will happen and now we also have stored memories.


It's Zane's ability. He enters people's minds. I think alerted you to that with Zane focusing on her right eye.


Quoted Text
Page 17. You haven't scene heading and the 1st line of description after that is � getting the gist, Zane closes his eyes. That line feels extremely weird to come directly after a slug line.


Why? Sincerely asking. I already described the room previously before. After watching the video, Zane understands what's going on.


Quoted Text
Page 18. Did I miss something here? Zane says to Max, killing you was only for her benefit. Now I'm lost Gabe. Did someone try to kill Max and failed or is he dead? He doesn't seem dead so what exactly does Zane means by that statement?


Wanted to create intrigue here. Not explain everything all at once. If I did, this would be a longer script which I didn't want. So, I thought I'll leave some mystery to later on explain.  

It would be revealed later on that Grace was there to distract Max but she wanted to kill him.  


Quoted Text
Another odd start for an action paragraph. You write that this is the middle area. You need to describe these areas better, because it's hard for me to try to visualize what the middle area is. Why not just state that Patrick and Aster stand near this or that? That would help get a better idea of the scene and situation.


Will delete those.


Quoted Text
You described Gabe as a nerd and then you described his brother Danny as a popular guy. How can he be a popular guy when he is a ghost and nobody can see or hear him?


Gabe and the audience will see and hear Danny. The other characters won't. Think of the movie Ghost.

And the '"popular guy" was meant has a description of the character.  I'll work on that  though.


Quoted Text
Page 20. I'm starting to see more and more typos. That is why I'm not mentioning them anymore.


Will fix.


Quoted Text
Smiley sort of reminds me of Harpo Marx. That's actually a good thing.


Thanks.


Quoted Text
Smiley entered this script in a grand way and I remember Max welcoming him to the carnival. Now all of a sudden, and it is sudden because not much time has passed yet, he seems to be in cahoots with Max and Zane. How did that all happen?


He wasn't welcoming him. If your referring to the arm over the shoulder, that shows their buddies. But, I'm curious why would you think he was not working for Max?

Hope this explains alot. Sorry for causing this confusion.  

I have alot of work to do when I get back to it. Thanks. Let me know if want a review.
Gabe
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Grandma Bear
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I didn't say it was a chore.   I've just got a lot on my plate, plus I'm doing this at work.

Why did I think Smiley was new to the carnival?  This is Max' first dialogue and he says it to Smiley.

"Glad that you can join us! I�m your
host, Max. So much is in store for
you. Let me give you the grand
tour."


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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 13th, 2012, 3:23pm Report to Moderator
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Take your time, Pia.

I think I'm going to have to use "Us" in the opening.

Thanks.
Gabe
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CoopBazinga
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Hey Gabriel,

I remember reading somewhere about you posting this on SS, believe you’ve been working on it a while so congrats on finishing a feature. I’m still pretty raw and am yet to complete one myself and the signs don’t look good that I ever will if the OWC is anything to go by.

Anyway, I read through the first 23 pages tonight and one word to describe it would be "confusing" so far.
I’m guessing the Thomson family is the protags from the logline but they’ve hardly been in the opening 20 pages.

Also things like Danny the ghost and when we moved to Grace’s apartment were like WTF, what’s happening? I’m guessing as I read on all will become clear and begin to make sense so I’m not making a complete assessment of your script here yet. I’ll wait until I’ve completed it and make an overall summery.  

I have to say that I have found it hard to visualize, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of scene descriptions. It’s nice for the reader to get some visual picture but I’m finding it very difficult. Just a thought.

These are the notes I took during the read.

P. 1  “Meet SMILEY (25)”  Don’t think you need the “meet” here?

Would have been nice to have a description of the scene, I wasn’t sure if there was an audience or not here.

“pass” think should be past. And again at the bottom of page one.

P. 2 Is Max talking to an audience?  I’m guessing he is but nothing’s been mentioned about them unless I missed it.

“Soon, Smiley” the “soon” seems redundant here.

P.5 Who was the woman in the series of shots? Was it candidate one?

P.6 “(a 50 year old husband)” Should this be man instead of husband? How do we know he’s married?

“etc.” I’m not sure on the use of etc in a script but the reason I brought it up was it reads like a funny orphan on this sentence. If you took out the “pull back” at the beginning of this sentence which isn’t needed IMO, you could solve that pesky orphan.

“Hairless” That’s an awkward description, do you mean bald or literally hairless all over his body like a seal.

“Nathanial Maitlorm” Isn’t capped on first intro. Also you're telling here about the head honcho.

P.8               GRACE
        I was wondering if it would be
        possible that I can interview you
        about your carnival?

This reads awkward?

“Wherever” is one word.

P.10 & 11 There’s a few missed capped letters at the start of Ben’s dialogue. I understand it’s supposed to be continuous but I believe it still needs to be capped.

A lot of “yours” going on in the dialogue here, I’d look out for that.

P.12 Okay, I’m going to come off stupid here but I have to ask. What’s with the “top left side”?

P. 14 “The” isn’t capped at the start of one of the sentences.

Although I like the name “wavy hair man” It feels like he needs a proper name, he seems to be a meaningful character?

Again “where” isn’t capped at the start of a sentence.

Also “where” in the rear master bedroom scene isn’t capped.

P.15 “Max stands.” Superfluous IMO.

P.16 Now I’m not sure about these missing capped letters because you seem to do it on every continuous scene? I thought you capped the start of very new sentence but my grammar isn’t the best so maybe I was wrong. If so then I apologise.

“A medium sized TV” Does the size matter?

Now we have “grey haired man” A lot of hair descriptions throughout.

P.18 “No one except for Gabe notices or hears Danny because he’s a ghost.” This came out left wing, unexpected but surely this is telling.

“peaks” think you mean peeks.

P.19 “stop at the first trailer and knocks” Should be stops.

“Danny passes through couch.” Missing “the”” between through and couch.

                      MAX
              (to Zane and Smiley)
                 On the floor.

Don’t think there is any need for parenthetical here, who else would he talking to?

P.20-21 A few inconsistencies with the slugs IMO. You did the mini slugs earlier for different rooms of the trailer but now it’s all morphed into one slug.

“What a interesting” an instead of a. Typo’s are becoming more frequent now.

P.23 “20 minutes” should be twenty. Maybe a personal choice.

“Danny leaves.” Forgot about Danny, I would reference him a few more times in this scene if it’s important.

Right, I’ve stopped at page 23 for now. Will continue as time allows through the week.

Cheers,

Steve
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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 14th, 2012, 10:55am Report to Moderator
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Hey Steve,

Thanks for the review.


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I remember reading somewhere about you posting this on SS, believe you’ve been working on it a while so congrats on finishing a feature. I’m still pretty raw and am yet to complete one myself and the signs don’t look good that I ever will if the OWC is anything to go by.


It's hard writing a feature. Need alot of discipline and motivation.

I wrote this as a short which some SS members liked. One of them suggested that I turn it into a feature. Hence, the product. It became bigger than I what I expected.


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Anyway, I read through the first 23 pages tonight and one word to describe it would be "confusing" so far.


Damnit. lol.


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I’m guessing the Thomson family is the protags from the logline but they’ve hardly been in the opening 20 pages.


They are, but I'm also developing a bigger story: Leonard vs. Nathaniel. I intend to write sequels within that realm.

This is also a superhero type of story so they're going to be a lot of characters. I tried to eliminate as much as possible.

I show them but I don't want to give too much info. The story's setup in following 4 characters: Max, Daniel, Angela, and Aster.      


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Also things like Danny the ghost and when we moved to Grace’s apartment were like WTF, what’s happening? I’m guessing as I read on all will become clear and begin to make sense so I’m not making a complete assessment of your script here yet. I’ll wait until I’ve completed it and make an overall summery.


It's their supernatural abilities. I gave characters more abilities to show their worth to the group.  


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I have to say that I have found it hard to visualize, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of scene descriptions. It’s nice for the reader to get some visual picture but I’m finding it very difficult. Just a thought.


I will work on the characters. Pia and Jeff mentioned it. Do you also mean the environment as well?

These are the notes I took during the read.


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P. 1  “Meet SMILEY (25)”  Don’t think you need the “meet” here?

Would have been nice to have a description of the scene, I wasn’t sure if there was an audience or not here.

“pass” think should be past. And again at the bottom of page one.


I'm writing under budget. Having a large audience, will require funds so I decided to eliminate that by having the camera represent us. I tried not using We. I guess some people get it while others don't. I'm not saying anything bad about it, just it's a fact. lol. I'll correct the pass.


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P. 2 Is Max talking to an audience?  I’m guessing he is but nothing’s been mentioned about them unless I missed it.

“Soon, Smiley” the “soon” seems redundant here.


Like previously before.  


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P.5 Who was the woman in the series of shots? Was it candidate one?


Pia mentioned it and i will make it clearer.


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P.6 “(a 50 year old husband)” Should this be man instead of husband? How do we know he’s married?


Wanted to let the reader know what type of people Angela's looking for. there's a pattern.


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“etc.” I’m not sure on the use of etc in a script but the reason I brought it up was it reads like a funny orphan on this sentence. If you took out the “pull back” at the beginning of this sentence which isn’t needed IMO, you could solve that pesky orphan.


that's just me being a director in the most subtlest way. lol, I wanted to show. I 'll see how to make this shorter.  


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“Hairless” That’s an awkward description, do you mean bald or literally hairless all over his body like a seal.


I'll write bald.


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“Nathanial Maitlorm” Isn’t capped on first intro. Also you're telling here about the head honcho.


I thought that if you reveal a person on screen that their name gets capped. I guess I was wrong. Will change.



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P.8               GRACE
        I was wondering if it would be
        possible that I can interview you
        about your carnival?

This reads awkward?


I'll eliminate "it would be possible that". Better?


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P.10 & 11 There’s a few missed capped letters at the start of Ben’s dialogue. I understand it’s supposed to be continuous but I believe it still needs to be capped.


Duly noted.


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A lot of “yours” going on in the dialogue here, I’d look out for that.


Will check it.


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P.12 Okay, I’m going to come off stupid here but I have to ask. What’s with the “top left side”?


You're not stupid. I wanted to be specific in the area. That's just me being too detail. I'll delete it.


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Although I like the name “wavy hair man” It feels like he needs a proper name, he seems to be a meaningful character?


He isn't. But I might change it. lol.


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Again “where” isn’t capped at the start of a sentence.

Also “where” in the rear master bedroom scene isn’t capped.


Check out screenwriting websites in reference to slugs. I think they also have the explanation here as well. Ask someone they'll explain it better than I can. Just know that it works. lol.


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P.18 “No one except for Gabe notices or hears Danny because he’s a ghost.” This came out left wing, unexpected but surely this is telling.


Wanted to create new superheroes. And, thought people would have a hard time understanding everything after that scene.  


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P.20-21 A few inconsistencies with the slugs IMO. You did the mini slugs earlier for different rooms of the trailer but now it’s all morphed into one slug.


I see what your talking about. Will rectify that.

Let me know if you have something you would like me to review.
Gabe
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mcornetto
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 12:40am Report to Moderator
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Don't hate me but I got to page 25 and I'm going to give up.    I've honestly tried but I can't seem to find a story here.   Things aren't making logical sense at this point and I've kind of started to just go through the motions of reading because any little distraction distracts me.  Kind of like when you're reading a technical manual - except one where you have no clue about the technology.  

And it's surprising that I can't find a story because you seem to relish in the detail of telling this "tale".  Sometimes much more detail than you really need.  

For example, there's no reason to introduce the acts in the ring - they don't really do anything for any story as far as I can tell.   Then you go on to tell us what's on all the monitors but it doesn't really matter because you don't mention them again in that scene - plus nothing is really happening on any of them.   Then those directions on the slugs - I'm certain they mean something to you but completely lost and confusing to me.  Just make up a place, Cup Cake Stand, Toilets, Pathway, whatever.  What direction it's in isn't important (and it will especially not be important when it's produced).  

Then the moment you introduce the circus we're somewhere else.  That should be another indication of why you don't need to give us the tour.  I learned nothing on the tour.

Also, you really need to work on your dialogue.  And this surprises me but for a script where I've completely lost my bearing, your dialogue tells me exactly what you want to say.  Some of it exceedingly on the nose.  

MAX
I understand about protecting loved
ones. However, I'm placed in a
predicament. She's not leaving
without you. Neither is this man.
And you have a duty to fulfill. So,
they're staying for the time being.
Once the job's done, they both
leave.

I think Gabe that you really need to go through this and clean up those slugs and get rid of excess description.  Then decide what the story is and introduce it in the first 10 pages.   You can worry about the carnival as it figures into the story.

Once there's a story to latch onto people will have an easier time reading and be more likely to finish it.  And if you are really successful in keeping their attention then they might even forgive some of the mistakes.

Your job is to provide that story, upfront.  I just don't see you doing that here.

Michael

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Mr.Ripley  -  March 15th, 2012, 1:46am
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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 11:02am Report to Moderator
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Hey Michael.

SPOILERS!


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Don't hate me but I got to page 25 and I'm going to give up.    I've honestly tried but I can't seem to find a story here.   Things aren't making logical sense at this point and I've kind of started to just go through the motions of reading because any little distraction distracts me.  Kind of like when you're reading a technical manual - except one where you have no clue about the technology.  


Staring daggers at your fishbowl at this very instance. lol.

It's cool. It was not going to my first masterpiece. I'm going back to this eventually and rewrite it some more. I've improved in the shorts dept. a bit so I can improve on this.


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And it's surprising that I can't find a story because you seem to relish in the detail of telling this "tale".  Sometimes much more detail than you really need.  


I did a lot of drafts on this. lol. And even came up with bio for almost all the characters. lol. I even worked out the structure. lol. I have to work on making this more clearer though.


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For example, there's no reason to introduce the acts in the ring - they don't really do anything for any story as far as I can tell.  


The characters in the show are going to be shown again in the end. And, it's part of the show welcoming the audience.  I wanted to open with a bang.


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Then you go on to tell us what's on all the monitors but it doesn't really matter because you don't mention them again in that scene - plus nothing is really happening on any of them.


Also, Wanted to show that Max' s crew is watching the carnival. Also give a bit of character on Zane {he's attention to detail).  


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Then those directions on the slugs - I'm certain they mean something to you but completely lost and confusing to me.  Just make up a place, Cup Cake Stand, Toilets, Pathway, whatever.  What direction it's in isn't important (and it will especially not be important when it's produced).


That you have point made by Pia and I think Jeff. I'll fix the top on the left stuff.

In regards to Southwest and southeast, I placed them there so the reader can have a sense of where they are in the carnival.  Readers need to know where they are. I give the reader the quadrant and the booth.

So, this is out of sincerety and that I want to write this correctly, if I just wrote EXT. CUP CAKE STAND - DAY, would that have been sufficient info for location?


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Then the moment you introduce the circus we're somewhere else.  That should be another indication of why you don't need to give us the tour.  I learned nothing on the tour.


I'm introducing you to the world that the stories going to take place. A world where a clown just flew, landed, and survived.  


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Also, you really need to work on your dialogue.  And this surprises me but for a script where I've completely lost my bearing, your dialogue tells me exactly what you want to say.  Some of it exceedingly on the nose.  

MAX
I understand about protecting loved
ones. However, I'm placed in a
predicament. She's not leaving
without you. Neither is this man.
And you have a duty to fulfill. So,
they're staying for the time being.
Once the job's done, they both
leave.


Get it right at times and get it wrong at times. I think sometimes on the nose dialgoue works. People talk to each other directly. That piece of diagloue you quoted Michael is where Angela is tied up. Max has Grace hostage. Max is telling Angela straight up what's her options. lol. I'm just explaining some of my writing. But I will go back and see what I can do.


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I think Gabe that you really need to go through this and clean up those slugs and get rid of excess description.
  

Going to definitely work on that.


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Then decide what the story is and introduce it in the first 10 pages.


I did. The family is introduced and I even created the problem: they can't stand each other.      

Thanks Michael for the review. Sorry you didn't like it. Sorry I made you confused. I'll work on making this clearer.  Hopefully my next work will not be confusing.

Gabe
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Grandma Bear
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 12:02pm Report to Moderator
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Gabe, I read through page 30 today. I hate to do this, but I am going to have to quit here. IMHO, this script has too many issues with it already at this point that I would suggest a complete overhaul. I think what I said the other day though, is that you have lost sight of the core of your story. You know how most screenwriting gurus always tell us to write the log line 1st and then write it on the piece of paper and tape it to your computer monitor. That way you will never lose track of what the story is really about. I think that is what has happened here. This story is not about Daniel having to team up with his ex-wife to get out of the fun house. At least not so far.

I know you have worked a long time and very hard on this script. If I remember correctly, it's your 1st feature. I don't think there is one single person here at SS who wrote a fantastic script the 1st time, so don't feel bad, but this particular story, just doesn't seem to work. Whatever you decide to do with it I wish you the best.

Pia

Page 21. MMMMM... Not sure what that means.

You're right that Max points, but not what he points at.

Page 22. I have no idea what Angela is talking about. Nor do I have any clue what Max is talking about. And I have absolutely no idea why Zane suddenly goes brutal.

Page 23. I had totally forgot about Danny. While this whole scene goes on, you probably should mention him a couple of times even if it's just standing in the corner watching.

Slight confusion here about Gabe. Who is he and what is he going to do? I know you introduced him earlier, but you gave me no indication that he was also part of this, whatever it is. The same goes for Patrick and Aster. I thought they were just visitors to the carnival.

You don't need to tell us what direction someone is heading. South, East, West or North, because it doesn't matter. It is not relevant to the story.

Page 26. I don't think that the enormous tent would have a fabric that could catch fire just from a cigarette. Those types of fabrics are usually very thick canvas type covered in plastic or similar. I do however, like your idea of Danny whom no one can see or hear being the one that sees the fire and tries to alert people. That was good. At the same time, it seems to me that Danny would know by now that no one can see or hear him...

Page 27. I'm rather curious how all the cars' engines could end up on the ground. I can see the tires being slashed, that can be done other quick, but getting the engines out?... On all the cars?

Page 29. I am confused why Max won't let the customers go.

I don't really like MAN #…. Gets to be a very confusing read when you have that many people without names and just a number.

Page 30. Who is Xavier? I don't remember being introduced to him earlier.

I'm actually a bit confused here by the end of this page. It seems like all the customers at this carnival are somehow involved in whatever it is that they are doing their. Whatever illegal stuff they are doing. Seems like there are no regular customers at all.


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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 12:24pm Report to Moderator
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No problem, pia. I have a lot of work to do on this script. thanks though.

Gabe
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Dreamscale
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 12:35pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Gabe, I don't want this to seem like dog piling here, but I do feel the need to chime in.

I actually read the entire script, and I've been fighting with myself about whether or not to say anything.  Since both Cornie and Pia stopped after 30 or so pages, I feel like honesty is the best choice here.

Gabe, I was much more than just confused throughout the script.  I was completely clueless as to what was going on, and more importantly why whatever was going on, was going on.

Nothing made any sense at all.  No characters made any sense at all.  No dialogue exchanges made any sense at all.  And finally, no action sequences made any sense at all.

On top of all these story elements, the writing on display was extremely difficult at best to get through.

There were numerous instances when you were flashing between scenes in which you'd write something to the point of, "So an so moves." - and that would literally be it.  To make matters worse, you'd then come back to this same scene, less than a page later, and write the exact same line, "So and so moves.".

My point is that your writing was so far from visual writing.  It was literally impossible to "see" anything that was supposed to be going on.  This was prevalent throughout the entire script.

As both Cornie and Pia said, not only is there no story here, but the story you laid out in your logline has so little to do with the overall "story" or action.

SPOILERS     SPOILERS     SPOILERS     SPOILERS

It looks like you are going after some kind of action hero/comic book setup of 2 groups of warring super powers.  What they are warring over and why they're doing what they're doing, I have no idea.  But, to make this work, or have any chance of working, you have to set up this world and these characters first...and in no way did you do that.

I don't want to be negative, but as Pia recommended, I have to agree 100% that you need to ditch what you have here and go back to square one and figure out exactly what it is you actually want to write about, because as it sits now, no one who's looked at it has a clue.

It seems like you have a very big story here with lots of unique characters, and that's a tough story and script to write by any means.  It really takes alot of planning and figuring, and it may just be too much for you at this point in your writing.  IMO, you should practice your craft by writing something much smaller scale and much simpler.

I appreciate the effort here, but in its current form, it ain't working.  Hope this helps.

Best of luck going forward.


To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
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Mr.Ripley
Posted: March 15th, 2012, 12:46pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks Jeff.

Honesty is the best policy. I appreciate that. I get great feedback from SS members. Hopefully, I reciprocate that back.

I'm working on another feature (my soulshadows entry). Once, I'm done with that, I'll return back to this and see what I can do. I have a long list of things to work on.

Thanks again to those who've read it and reviewed it.  
Gabe
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