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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Action/Adventure Scripts  ›  Warborn Moderators: bert
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  Author    Warborn  (currently 1656 views)
Don
Posted: December 29th, 2014, 3:07pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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War Born by Elijah Cooksey - Action, Adventure - An action/adventure set in a fantasy world where two clans who have waged a hundred year war negotiate an ultimatum.  116 pages - pdf, format


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-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky

Revision History (1 edits)
Don  -  February 5th, 2015, 3:57pm
revised draft and logline
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Trevor
Posted: January 16th, 2015, 11:09pm Report to Moderator
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Hi Elijah,

What great story! Certainly a unique political situation you've created. I really enjoyed it, and the action scenes are well written. I could really see it and each of the characters personality was consistent in the action. Kudos for that. It reminds me of Dumas and how he writes action.

I had a few thoughts to pass on from a first time reading perspective, feel free to ponder or ignore:

The premise of the two "Warborn" is a great dramatic opportunity. You might consider a way to build up the tension prior to their first meeting. That moment is a big deal! ...but other than the history narration in the beginning we don't know much as an audience who they are or why we care about them on a personal level. Maybe try moving some of their backstory flashbacks sooner, so we get to know them a little. That way the audience feels the weight of that first meeting a bit more.

Also, nice twist ending! Had me fooled there for a few pages! (I won't spoil it here for anyone else)
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ECooksey
Posted: January 21st, 2015, 8:05pm Report to Moderator
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Hello Trevor!

Iím ecstatic you took the time to read my script.  Sorry for the late reply, I wasnít a member of the forum yet.  This is my first full script so I am looking for all the feedback I can get.  
You make a great point about the missed opportunity to build tension between the Warborns.  As it is currently written, MIKASA is supposed to be mysterious in the first act.  Now that you pointed it out I completely agree with you, a build up between them would make the whole script more powerful.  
If you have any other comments please share, I am anxious to soak in all the feedback I can.  
Also Iíd love to return the favor, do you have any scripts posted?
Elijah Cooksey


Elijah Cooksey
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DS
Posted: January 22nd, 2015, 6:45am Report to Moderator
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Hi Elijah, welcome to SS!

I took a look at the script, but I stopped reading on page 3. I'll try and explain why I stopped and hopefully you can get something out of it.

My thoughts:

The main issue for me was the writing, there were a few others such as overall confusion on where and when this was happening and formatting issues, but those alone probably wouldn't have stopped me. The writing on the first pages consisted of simple sentences that didn't flow and read awkwardly and sometimes confusingly. I closed the script because I didn't feel the writing could carry the script, no matter how good the story behind it could be.

As for the confusion on where and when: There are names like Crow, Clay, Ragnarock, Mikasa and Pierce on the first pages. Along with Ninjas. I have no idea where or when this is taking place and guessing is hard because the information is kind of contradictory. A fictional world sounded the most likely, but I still have no clue.

I believe this is something that should be apparent when a reader gets into the script. If you don't use a super to tell it it should be in the premise, the logline. I felt that the current logline also was too vague for a script like this.

Then the formatting errors: Instead of OVER BLACK: there's a description of black "hanging". Hanging? I don't think this is the right word for it.

Character names are always capitalised, even in dialogue. They should only be capitalised when they're first introduced and never in dialogue. Capitalisation in dialogue means yelling.

On Page 1 you have - LATE NIGHT and then you hop to - NIGHT for one scene heading and back again. Is that a different time? Night would suffice, but any way there's no consistency.

In some more detail with a few suggestions:


Quoted Text
Logline: A tenderhearted warrior is forced to kill in order to end the war.


Your script has a big concept, add more information on the war, the setting you're in etc. Also don't give away that he's forced to kill in the logline, add ambiguity  to make us interested in the script and question whether he's going to have to kill or not. There's good conflict here just needs some rewording imo.


Quoted Text
The screen hangs black.

A high pitched scream rings.


(A high pitched scream doesn't ring, a phone rings. Also if you have something over black you should use a fade in.)

OVER BLACK:

A high pitched scream.

FADE IN:


Quoted Text
EXT. VILLAGE - LATE NIGHT
Fire covers the village. It illuminates a cold night.
Smoke blankets this empty sky. People panic with weapons in
hand. Abandoned children cry out.


(The confusingness starts here imo. Did people just grab what they could find or are they actual weapons and if so what weapons? I'm also unclear as to why the village is burning. Arson? Cannons? What happened?

I think you could also merge a few sentences and get rid of the repetition of the same meaning in two of the sentences above.)

Smoke billows as huts burn intensively throughout the village. Amidst the cries of abandoned children, people run around panicking, armed with whatever they could find.



Quoted Text
YOUNG CLAY steps through the hut's opening. Blonde and
blue-eyed as well, he wears a hat made from raccoon hide.
The raccoon's face blankets YOUNG CLAY'S scalp. YOUNG CLAY
is twenty.


I'm wondering why their hair colour and eye colour are so important. They won't make it into a casting call anyway. I think you should rather describe their personal traits or more important phsyical traits that would be relevant to the character or plot. The order of it all is messy too, needs some merging and reordering imo.



Quoted Text
INT. NINJA HOUSE - NIGHT
Shadows hide the house. A girl's shrouded figure shakes
within the shadows. She is twelve.

YOUNG MIKASA
No!


Okay, it's definitely a ninja house if shadows are hiding it. Akward and confusing phrasing making it difficult to get the full picture. You should mention that the girl is indeed young misaka to make sure it's clear, too.


Quoted Text
PIERCE is large, a head taller than YOUNG CLAY. He holds a
giant sledgehammer with one hand. He is Twenty as well, but
looks much older than YOUNG CLAY.

To the side of PIERCE is YOUNG RAGNAROCK, his younger
brother. YOUNG RAGNAROCK is the same age as YOUNG CROW, but
could be mistaken for a fifteen year-old. YOUNG RAGNAROCK
stands behind PIERCE. He shelters himself behind his hero.


More awkward and clunky character introductions.

I think a lot of people would close this script on the first few pages. I'd suggest working on the logline and the writing. Good luck, hope my thoughts on this gave you some notes you can use. Good luck.

Revision History (1 edits)
DS  -  January 22nd, 2015, 7:21am
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ECooksey
Posted: January 22nd, 2015, 3:26pm Report to Moderator
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Hello DS,
Thanks for taking the time to look at it.  You make some excellent points.
LATE NIGHT to NIGHT is a typo that I failed to catch.  Good call.
My professor insists we always capitalize character names.  I have two files saved, his way and the normal way.  I uploaded the wrong file apparently.
I am in no way in love with my logline.  You make a strong point about including a description of setting.  To be completely honest it is something I am not finished with.
The first scene is supposed to be confusing.  It is followed by a massive exposition drop on page four.
That being said a little more description would be beneficial.  For instance classifying the weapons from the start.  But as far as why the fires are burning, thatís a good question to keep in the readers mind.
The Characterís description is important to the story because of the race conflict.
Imo screams can ring.  I actually believe any noise can ring by make a clear resonant or vibrating sound.
I try to stay away from calling camera shots.  That is the directorís job.  If he/she thinks the description of the ďscreen hangs blackĒ call for an OVER BLACK:, FADE IN: then thatís up to him/her.
That description does feel chunky now that you mention it.  But I want to steer away from long sentences.  I overcompensated here, thank you for the advice.
I have a question about the Ninja house scene.  I Mikasa is on screen but isnít visible.  All the viewer can tell is that she is a young girl.  But I need her voice.  Any ideas on how I should describe this scene instead?
I will continue to work on the script, the first pages are vital.  If they fail the reader will stop as is the case with yourself.  I hope you might decide to give it another chance.  I believe that at least ten pages are necessary before one can judge a script.  Plus imagine all the advice I could get from you! 




Elijah Cooksey
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DS
Posted: January 23rd, 2015, 5:46pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Elijah, quick response to your response before I log off for the day:


Quoted from ECooksey
My professor insists we always capitalize character names.


Oh, okay. I do know it's not the most uncommon thing. Does your professor always make you capitalize the names inside dialogue too? I'm confident that one's definitely an error.


Quoted from ECooksey

The first scene is supposed to be confusing.  It is followed by a massive exposition drop on page four.


Yeah, I wasn't saying that everything needed to be explained really early. I mainly just think the best option would be that a glimpse information about the time & setting would be present in the logline or perhaps through a super to avoid that overall confusion feel about the world that in this case doesn't work in your favour imo.


Quoted Text
But as far as why the fires are burning, that's a good question to keep in the readers mind.


I more so had in mind how it would look like on the screen. It was hard for me to picture how the scene was looking (e.g how much was actually on fire, how big the threat was to the people etc.) due to the lack of description.


Quoted Text
The Character's description is important to the story because of the race conflict.


Ah.


Quoted Text
Imo screams can ring.  I actually believe any noise can ring by make a clear resonant or vibrating sound.


Resonates, vibrates would be much better to use here in that case imo. Awkward wording if you ask me, but agree to disagree.


Quoted Text
I try to stay away from calling camera shots.  That is the director's job.  If he/she thinks the description of the screen hangs black call for an OVER BLACK:, FADE IN: then that's up to him/her.


Aren't these two exactly the same things? You have the screen as black, a scream and then go to the first scene heading that we could actually see. The only difference I see is that OVER BLACK: is the correct way to format it.


Quoted Text
I have a question about the Ninja house scene.  I Mikasa is on screen but isn't visible.  All the viewer can tell is that she is a young girl.  But I need her voice.  Any ideas on how I should describe this scene instead?


Never mind my comment about this. As I read it over the second time... it's clear that the girl is Mikasa. Exactly why you should take all my comments with a grain of salt.

Hope you can get something out of this as well. I look forward to seeing you around the boards more.
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