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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Comedy Scripts  ›  Red Balloons and Rollercoasters Moderators: bert
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  Author    Red Balloons and Rollercoasters  (currently 5526 views)
Don
Posted: February 10th, 2008, 4:16pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Red Balloons and Rollercoasters by Adam Butt (limey) - Comedy, Romantic, Dramedy - When Ben Pearce falls for his best friend's girlfriend, vanity, family and history combine to utter destruction. Can love salvage something from the wreckage? 104 pages - pdf, format


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Limey
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Dear All

Would be grateful for any feedback on this, even if it's just to read the first 15 pages (which I'm still not happy with). Couldn't decide whether to classify it as a Comedy or a Drama so would be interested to hear what anyone else thinks. I think it's got a very definite "British" flavour to it and in anticipation of any ensuing confusion here's a brief glossary;

"The Vs" (aka "The Two-fingered Salute") - British alternative to "The Finger"

"Jammy Dodgers" - biscuit / cookie with, surprise surprise, a jam/jelly filling

"Pork scratchings" - pub snack - basically fried pig fat. Nice.

"Tenner" - ten pound note

"Heat" - celebrity gossip magazine

"Brighton Pier" - typical pier common to British seaside towns; tend to be crowded with kiosks selling food and cheap souvenirs, video arcades and fairground rides. And seagulls.

There's probably loads more but I'm bored now. Happy reading  

Adam


EDIT: JUST TO LET YOU KNOW THAT THIS THREAD CONTAINS A COUPLE OF SIGNIFICANT SPOILERS THAT AREN'T FLAGGED, SO IF YOU'RE THINKING OF READING THE SCRIPT I'D SUGGEST DOING SO BEFORE READING THE REVIEWS.


If you still want to know what the reviewers thought before reading it, this is your last chance not to spoil it for yourself;


Quoted from Hoody
Although the concept wasn't that original, I liked the story and characters and still think it's better than half the cr** Hollywood prodcues.  It's very, very funny and very dramatic -- without going overboard -- when it needs to be.  I give it an 8.5/10.



Quoted from mikep
What a great script. Seriously, I loved this, it's a funny charming, sweet romantic comedy. I was totally taken by surprise here, intending to read a few pages and then finish it later, but I was hooked and put everything else on hold to finish it as soon as I could.



Quoted from Scoob
Wow, that was something. It was funny - hilarious in parts - enjoyable, witty and it had great characters. Once the story really got going it was very difficult to stop reading. Well, I couldnt stop.



Quoted from Shelton
I noticed that you had mentioned having some trouble with defining this as a Comedy or Drama, and I can certainly see why.  To be honest, I don't think it really falls heavily into either one, it's more of a straight romance script. But, since SS doesn't have a romance section, I would have to say that this is better defined as a drama.  There's some good comedic stuff in here, but a lot of the conflicts the characters face are pretty dramatic (...CENSORED!...). That being said, I didn't stress too much on genre as I read, and I did enjoy the script.



Quoted from alffy
I didn't think I'd like this as much as I did, not really my kind of movie but I guess the best thing I can say about it is... If I had to take our lass to the cinema to watch something romantic I'd pick this hands down.  The comedy was really funny and the twist at the end came out of the blue to me, I only twig moments before.



Quoted from RobertSpence
Overall, I thought your script was very good, had a unique voice, great spin on a somewhat predictable genre, and your great sense of realism made me identify with the characters and plot. Good work, a pretty solid script.



Quoted from JD_OK
I like the story and I can see it being made. Now alot of the dialog doesnt makes sense but that is cuz i dont know British slang/talk, but u had good amount of actual funny things. But the dialog was defiantly ur strong suit here and its flowed well. Characters were all good,well ur main ones that moved the script along. Biggest gripe I have is ur bad format.


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/

Revision History (6 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Limey  -  February 20th, 2008, 5:40am
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Hoody
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Forgive me for this -- most likely -- crappy review.  I'm gonna try and make it as small as possible so I'm gonna avoid pointing out typoes (I'll let others do that).

Premise and storyline: This story has been done countless times.  Usually the only way to stand out is to have good, round characters.  I think you managed this though, so it was easy to forget about the concept and focus on the characters.

Characters and characterization:  All your characters were good.  Ben was instantly likeable and Matt was kind of a dick, but not enough for me to ever hate him and it was easy to understand why he was getting suspicious and angry towards the end.  I think you got their relationships down perfectly.  And Pooley was great comic relief.  Everything he said and did got a laugh out of me.

Dialogue:  From what I gathered, the dialogue was very good and natural for the most part.  There were times where I had no clue what the hell they were talking about, but that's mostly due to the "British flavour".  There's also spots where it's hard to tell what's sarcastic and what's not (ie: conversation on page 25).

Formatting:  The formatting is spot on for the most part.  Sometimes, you do this, "... (beat) ..." when I don't understand why you just use the ellipsis (the actor will then know to pause).  Also, I think you can do without the inserts.  It's just as easy and much cleaner if you just describe what we're looking at in the action without the use of the "INSERT:".  Other than that there wasn't much that bothered me or made the script hard to read.

I loved the David/Karen subplot.  I actually had no idea what was going on and I loved the transitions.  I'm glad the reveal at the end surprised me because if it didn't, it would of been a wasted subplot.  Good job with that.

Perfect length, too.  Not too long, not too short.

Summary: Although the concept wasn't that original, I liked the story and characters and still think it's better than half the crap Hollywood prodcues.  It's very, very funny and very dramatic -- without going overboard -- when it needs to be.  I give it an 8.5/10.  I think with some revisions, you could get this produced, or at least get you an agent.  You're a very good writer.

Things I would consider looking at:
-The 2 girls from the bar (the ones Pooley hits on) don't need names.
-I had no clue who Helen was up until we met her, so I assumed Ben didn't know her either, so her asking him, while they're drunk, if he wants to go to Helen's with her doesn't work for me without any kind of explanation of who she is.  This can be fixed by just changing "Helen's" to "Sister's".
-On page 29, Matt only tells her who David is, when she asks who they both are.
-I'm confused about the ring ordeal(page 79).  Didn't Pooley have the ring when it got stuck on his finger?  How could Matt later present it to Soph?  I think you need to clear that up with me, or consider fixing it(if I was right).

I think that's about it.  I keep trying to add more, but I'm constantly getting interrupted(online poker).  If you have any specific questions for me to answer or specific things you wanted me to critique, let me know and I'll try my best to help.


Please, read Elvis The Goat or Cold Turkey.  Thanks in advance and I'll make sure to review your script in exchange.
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Limey
Posted: February 11th, 2008, 6:34am Report to Moderator
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Hey Hoody


Quoted from Hoody
Forgive me for this -- most likely -- crappy review.


You're forgiven - any review that gives me 8.5/10 is fine by me   . Seriously though, I really appreciate you taking the time to read and review this (and for the rapid turnaround!)


Quoted from Hoody
I'm gonna avoid pointing out typoes (I'll let others do that).


Damn it! Sorry, hope there weren't too many


Quoted from Hoody
Premise and storyline: This story has been done countless times.  Usually the only way to stand out is to have good, round characters.  I think you managed this though, so it was easy to forget about the concept and focus on the characters.


Absolutely, this is definitely not a fresh plot. My biggest beef with the RomComs that actually get produced is that a) they're not funny and b) the characters are so flat you don't ever really care what happens to them. I really wanted to make this a character driven script, realistic (-ish) and funny so the plot was really secondary to this (not ideal, I know, but most RomComs have ludicrous plotlines anyway)


Quoted from Hoody
Matt was kind of a dick, but not enough for me to ever hate him and it was easy to understand why he was getting suspicious and angry towards the end.


Glad to hear that, it's what I was going for - he's not a bad guy but I didn't want the audience to side with him over Ben


Quoted from Hoody
And Pooley was great comic relief.  Everything he said and did got a laugh out of me.


Again, glad to hear it - that's exactly why he was included but I'm thinking compared to the others he's a little 2D (1D?) so I might try and weave in a mini-subplot for him in the next rewrite, assuming it doesn't add too much length to the script.

I note you didn't mention the female characters - did you have any reservations about them? I'm slightly concerned that people may find Soph and Beth too similar (which is in part intentional) and have a problem with that.


Quoted from Hoody
Dialogue:  From what I gathered, the dialogue was very good and natural for the most part.  There were times where I had no clue what the hell they were talking about, but that's mostly due to the "British flavour".  There's also spots where it's hard to tell what's sarcastic and what's not (ie: conversation on page 25).


Yeah, we English are naturally sarcastic race   but I do probably need to make it clearer for the international market. Hope the dialogue wasn't too confusing (even bigger thanks for finishing it if it was) - were there any particular phrases / exchanges that need clarifying? I'm intending to enter this in a number of US competitions so it'd be good to know what I need to "internationalise" (I'm not going so far as to internationaliZe" though)


Quoted from Hoody
Sometimes, you do this, "... (beat) ..." when I don't understand why you just use the ellipsis (the actor will then know to pause).


I think this is one of those "flexible" rules of writing where you can show pauses in a number of ways - the screenwriting books I've read suggest "..." is a short pause and "...(beat)..." a longer one but I think it's a case of whatever works for you (or I hope it is)


Quoted from Hoody
Also, I think you can do without the inserts.  It's just as easy and much cleaner if you just describe what we're looking at in the action without the use of the "INSERT:".


Ha, I saw this method used in a number of scripts on this site and thought it made things a bit clearer - guess that's subjective  


Quoted from Hoody
Perfect length, too.  Not too long, not too short.


Thanks. I was worried about it dragging a bit from p64 to p90-ish - did you feel the pacing was OK there?


Quoted from Hoody
Summary: Although the concept wasn't that original, I liked the story and characters and still think it's better than half the crap Hollywood prodcues.  It's very, very funny and very dramatic -- without going overboard -- when it needs to be.  I give it an 8.5/10.


I can live with that  


Quoted from Hoody
I think with some revisions, you could get this produced, or at least get you an agent.


Flattery will get you everywhere. I suppose it's too much to hope for that you work in the industry and have a load of contacts queuing up for a script like this?  


Quoted from Hoody
I had no clue who Helen was up until we met her, so I assumed Ben didn't know her either, so her asking him, while they're drunk, if he wants to go to Helen's with her doesn't work for me without any kind of explanation of who she is.


Point taken. He knew who she was anyway from previous (off screen) discussions they've had but sounds like I should make this clear.


Quoted from Hoody
I'm confused about the ring ordeal(page 79).  Didn't Pooley have the ring when it got stuck on his finger?  How could Matt later present it to Soph?  I think you need to clear that up with me, or consider fixing it(if I was right).


Pooley did manage to get the ring off, I just didn't bother showing it. I'll see if I can make it clearer in the script.


Quoted from Hoody
I'm constantly getting interrupted(online poker).


Hope you took those suckers for all they're worth  


Thanks again for the read. I'll check out your scripts and get back to you tonight or tomorrow.

Cheers

Adam


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Limey  -  February 11th, 2008, 2:22pm
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Hoody
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Question answerin' time:


Quoted Text
You're forgiven - any review that gives me 8.5/10 is fine by me.


I had to take a point off for the concept, and a half a point because it does need some work.  I did love the script, though.


Quoted Text
d*rn it! Sorry, hope there weren't too many


No, there were maybe a couple that I noticed (remember, I wasn't looking), but not enough to take me out of the story at all.


Quoted Text
...really wanted to make this a character driven script, realistic (-ish) and funny so the plot was really secondary to this...


That's what I noticed -- and I applaud you for it: you let the characters move the story forward.  You didn't have any of the stock scenes that you expect from a script like this -- you put original ideas into an unoriginal plot, which is fine by me.


Quoted Text
that's exactly why he was included but I'm thinking compared to the others [Pooley's] a little 2D (1D?) so I might try and weave in a mini-subplot for him in the next rewrite, assuming it doesn't add too much length to the script.


I agree that he is a stock character (but the only one, I believe).  The problem with adding a sub-plot for him is that I don't want to see the script go over 110 pages.  If you can manage to add more to him without taking away from the pace and adding on 6 pages, that's awesome.


Quoted Text
I note you didn't mention the female characters - did you have any reservations about them? I'm slightly concerned that people may find Soph and Beth too similar (which is in part intentional) and have a problem with that.


I though Soph was fine.  She's what you would expect, but she's "real" enough to believe that this could happen (and I'm sure it happens in real life all the time).  I thought the similarities between Soph and Beth were intentional.  I assumed that since Ben couldn't get Soph, he would attach himself to the first person that would remind him of her...maybe that's just me, though.


Quoted Text
I'm intending to enter this in a number of US competitions so it'd be good to know what I need to "internationalise"


Please, don't "internationalise" this.  If you were to Americanize this, it would just fall in with all the others, but your British take is what makes it somewhat unique (unless, they make these movies all the time in Britain...)  True, I had no clue what they were saying at points, but in the long run, I knew exactly what was happening.  I don't know if you should change any of the dialogue, just make it clear when they're being saracastic or not.

With the inserts and "... (beat) ..."s I was just trying to save you a page or two (yes, it's amazing how easy it is to shave off a page in feature length scripts).  If you want to keep them, that's fine because I knew exactly what you meant with them.  P.S., I think INSERTS look ugly...but that's just me


Quoted Text
I was worried about it dragging a bit from p64 to p90-ish - did you feel the pacing was OK there?


I honestly thought that the first 2 acts were slower than the last one because, obviously, you have to set up the relationships.  I thought the last act was fine, pacing and everything.


Quoted Text
...I suppose it's too much to hope for that you work in the industry...?


Ha, I wish!  But to tell the truth, I think you could get an agent with this script.


Quoted Text
He knew who she was anyway from previous (off screen) discussions they've had but sounds like I should make this clear.


You gotta remember that the audience is very naive.  They don't want to have to assume things (I try to, but here, I'm just helping you).


Quoted Text
Pooley did manage to get the ring off, I just didn't bother showing it. I'll see if I can make it clearer in the script.


Same with here.  You're gonna have all the IMDB nerds yelling, "CONTINUITY ERROR!  CONTINUITY ERROR!"


Quoted Text
Hope you took those suckers for all they're worth.


Sadly, no.  The problem with freeroll tournaments is that people will play any 2 cards...and me not focusing 100% on it didn't help either.

Hope this helps!


Please, read Elvis The Goat or Cold Turkey.  Thanks in advance and I'll make sure to review your script in exchange.
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Limey
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Quoted from Hoody
I agree that he [Pooley] is a stock character (but the only one, I believe).  The problem with adding a sub-plot for him is that I don't want to see the script go over 110 pages.


My thoughts exactly, it'd have to be short and sweet.


Quoted from Hoody
I thought the similarities between Soph and Beth were intentional.  I assumed that since Ben couldn't get Soph, he would attach himself to the first person that would remind him of her...


Exactly. Also, although consciously he's trying to "get over" Soph, subconsciously he has no intention of doing so and that fact that he's rejecting someone who, for all intents and purposes, is pretty similar to her is testament to this (or does that contradict the first point  . Hey, love's confusing)


Quoted from Hoody
Please, don't "internationalise" this.  If you were to Americanize this, it would just fall in with all the others, but your British take is what makes it somewhat unique


Yeah, I don't think I can really change the dialogue, I'm thinking more the description / action (and the sarcasm, of course) or did you feel that was clear enough?



Quoted from Hoody
Sadly, no.  The problem with freeroll tournaments is that people will play any 2 cards...and me not focusing 100% on it didn't help either.


Ah man, now I feel all guilty  


Cheers



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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mikep
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What a great script.

Seriously, I loved this, it's a funny charming, sweet romantic comedy. I was totally taken by surprise here, intending to read a few pages and then finish it later, but I was hooked and put everything else on hold to finish it as soon as I could.

The characters were well written and the conflicts set up nicely. Ben, Matt, Soph all seemed to have their own voices, and although one of the rules of romantic comedy is that everyone is funnier than we'd be in real life, the jokes seemed to flow as normal dialogue, effortlessly. Twice I was laughing so hard I had to actually stop reading for a moment, the ring incident with Pooley, and Beth's line "thanks for the sex, you tried really hard". That was brillaint :p    The comment above with Pooley being a stock character may technically be correct, he's the comic relief, but he is also hilarious, very sharp stuff there.

I hope you don't mind and find it a compliement if I compare this to a Richard Curtis script. Personally , Notting Hill and Love Actually are two of my favorite films and are filled with both big laughs and sweet heart-felt moments, moves I can watch again and again. This charming screenplay put me in mind of those scripts.

Your pacing was fine, the story never dragged, the fact that I essentially stopped working for 90 minutes to read it is all I can say The only thing I would even suggest


******* SPOLIERS AHEAD**************************

is to pull back a bit on Matt's final voice over, either shorten it or extend the scene a bit so the final moments are ALL Ben & Soph. We've come this far and want Ben & Soph to be together, Matt's final words, for me, kept my attention on
him, not them.

********END OF SPOILER*************************

....but otherwise, I was charmed. Would highly recommend this as a read to anyone who wants a nice realxing, fun read.



13 feature scripts, 2 short subjects. One sale, 4 options. Nothing filmed. Damn.

Currently rewriting another writer's SciFi script for an indie producer in L.A.
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Scoob
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Hi Adam,

I usually read scripts from start to finish and write down my points as they happen. Im not quite on the level of Barry Normon so my reviews are more based on events as they happen. Of course I do try and summarize things at the end so I hope this helps.
This is my first attempt at trying to review a comedy or a romantic drama so I might be out of my fish bowl here. But here goes:

The first 9 pages or so I wasnt sure what I kind of humour to expect so I might have to go over it again once I have finished - I like the balloon phobia, could cause some amusing scenarios. It feels like Friends Vs American Pie Vs Game On ( although I dont think you are aiming to go in either of them directions ) at the moment for some reason but with an English touch. Still way to early to tell of course. The jammy dodgers line was pretty amusing.

Im beggining to look at Ben as Ben Stiller - hardly an amazing comparison - but he seems that type of character. The photo scene ( P:11)was funny, a little cliched but amusing all the same. By the way, I have no problems with cliches as long as they work and this did, I feel. At this stage I can now kind of tell what type of script you are aiming at here but I could be wrong, you might flip it completly.

P15: Just something that lost me momentarily when you restart the line with Who. I know you mean Pooley after I re-read the previous line but it just took a little momentum away. Nothing major, it's possibly more me adapting to your style of writing.

P22: Some good funny lines here that I liked. I know I should probably dislike Matt, but he does make me laugh. He's just as crass as can be.

P24-25: Just thought Id point out that by this stage I have got into the script, I feel I know the main characters ( Ben, Soph and Matt ) and you have also written a bang on time second act.  I like the humour, and so far, I like the characters.

I think the way you introduced Helen was well done and even brave to an extent.. A good well delivered scene. I'd say you mixed humour with drama here very well.

Fun little scene on the bus. I think it worked really well and it was a good scene that added some moraility to Ben.

I liked the roller disco scene, I thought the way the you wrote how Matt goes about telling Ben he wants him to move out and then rely on him to help him out in front of Soph was really well delivered. Both funny and dramatic.

Im up to page 53 and I really like the way you pace your writing. It's quick and to the point. The story is really begining to unfold and I like it that you have great humour for a few pages and then a more dramatic scene. Its a nice mix which works well. It also helps that you have written characters which I like and look forward to what they will either say or do next.

Beth and Ben's chat where she dumps him had me laughing.

At the point now where Matt tells Soph the lie about Ben. What a bastard! I liked Matt despite his lack of tact and compassion but that just made me go off him completly, which is great for the story. It's also typical of him to come out with something like that, it's definitly in his character. Really enjoyable stuff so far and hard to put down.

The image of Matt going ape in the mini and his actions being heard over the phone loud speaker cracked me up.

And finished - I was getting a little anxious towards the end about Soph not coming back to the scene but a great ending to a really entertaining story. I liked how Ben's backstory was played out throughout the script and finished at the ending. I mean it was pretty obvious what was happening or going to happen but that wasnt the point. It was a really satisfying conclusion.

Wow, that was something. It was funny - hilarious in parts - enjoyable, witty and it had great characters. Once the story really got going it was very difficult to stop reading. Well, I couldnt stop. The love triangle between Matt, Soph and Ben was always pretty obvious I felt from the get-go but that is fine because I feel this was more about how and why the inevitiable would happen. It made for some great lines, good fun and charm.
Your writing was great. I especially enjoyed how you described characters expressions or reactions - it just made things a lot more clearer to see. The action was quick and to the point without ever over doing it. The real highlight for me was in the dialouge. The way the characters interacted with eachother was cleverly written, and some of the lines in this are priceless. Too many to pinpoint but it seemed very real and accurate from my point of view.
I think the Helen subplot was also well written. It definitly gave the story a more dramatic turn but it never really bogged the script down into being miserable.
I think you paced the script just about right.
The characters were great. They were all pretty funny to me and all likeable, to a degree. I had to forgive Matt at the end because he just made me laugh so much before.

Great job!



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Limey
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Hey Mike

Thanks for read and review, I really appreciate it - I knew there had to be a fellow feature lover out there somehwere . And I'm certainly glad you enjoyed it.


Quoted from mikep
I was totally taken by surprise here, intending to read a few pages and then finish it later, but I was hooked and put everything else on hold to finish it as soon as I could.

That's really great to hear - I've been struggling with the first 15 pages or so and I'm still not completely happy with them but it sounds like you felt they worked OK and drew you in. Anything you think I could improve there?


Quoted from mikep
Twice I was laughing so hard I had to actually stop reading for a moment, the ring incident with Pooley, and Beth's line "thanks for the sex, you tried really hard". That was brillaint :p

Probably one of the best things a comedy writer can hear! As long as you weren't drinking anything at the time - happened to me a few days ago and I sprayed a mouthful of tea all over my keyboard   . And that line of Beth's is my favourite line of the script - don't think I'll ever top it.


Quoted from mikep
I hope you don't mind and find it a compliement if I compare this to a Richard Curtis script. Personally , Notting Hill and Love Actually are two of my favorite films and are filled with both big laughs and sweet heart-felt moments, moves I can watch again and again. This charming screenplay put me in mind of those scripts.

I definitely don't mind that! I'm a huge fan of Mr Curtis (as you can probably guess) - OK, so he's never going to win an Oscar but like you say you can watch his films over and over and still come away with a warm, fuzzy feeling. That's good enough for me.


******* SPOLIERS AHEAD**************************


Quoted from mikep
is to pull back a bit on Matt's final voice over, either shorten it or extend the scene a bit so the final moments are ALL Ben & Soph. We've come this far and want Ben & Soph to be together, Matt's final words, for me, kept my attention on
him, not them.


Good point. I was going for that "Didactic" ending that Robert McKee's always banging on about and hoping that because, visually, we're focussed on Ben and Soph I could drum up a little compassion for Matt to make the ending more bittersweet but it's a fine line and I probably overstepped it a bit. I'll definitely be looking at it in the rewrite.

On a related note, people go into these scripts knowing the outcome and the only vague intrigue is what obstacle the protagonist is going to have to overcome to get there. I've tried to inject a bit of suspense with the David / Karen flashbacks (ie what's going on there) and also with Soph's letter / the disappearance of the bear to suggest maybe it won't be a happy ending - did either of these "twists" work for you or did you see the ending coming anyway (not sure you can escape it in this genre!)


********END OF SPOILER*************************


Thanks again. I've been meaning to look at your other two scripts seeing as I liked Feral - any particular order you'd like me to tackle them in?

Cheers

Adam


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Limey
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Hey Malc

Thanks for taking a look at this, I really appreciate it, especially as you say it's out of your usual "fish bowl".


Quoted from Scoob
Im not quite on the level of Barry Normon

Ha, ha, whatever happened to old Bazza? Jonny Ross is OK but doesn't quite have Mr Norman's gravitas


Quoted from Scoob
The first 9 pages or so I wasnt sure what I kind of humour to expect... It feels like Friends Vs American Pie Vs Game On ( although I dont think you are aiming to go in either of them directions )

Yeah, I think the first 10-15 pages have a slightly different tone to the rest of the script, mainly from trying to establish that Ben and Matt are old, old friends and we all know we boys are incredibly crass and childish when we get together. Hopefully it moves away from that, though, as the script progresses.


Quoted from Scoob
Im beggining to look at Ben as Ben Stiller - hardly an amazing comparison - but he seems that type of character.

Careful... Ben Stiller's one of those people I'd never get tired of hitting in the face >


Quoted from Scoob
P24-25: Just thought Id point out that by this stage I have got into the script.

Anything you think I could change to have got you into it faster?


Quoted from Scoob
I'd say you mixed humour with drama here very well.

Thanks. I've tried to put some real drama into the script rather than the watered down nods towards conflict you usually get in RomComs. Glad you think it works.


Quoted from Scoob
Beth and Ben's chat where she dumps him had me laughing.

Ha ha, sounds like it's proving popular. Not based on real life, I hasten to add  


****************SPOILERS********************************


Quoted from Scoob
I was getting a little anxious towards the end about Soph not coming back to the scene but a great ending to a really entertaining story.

Did that red herring work? It's really hard to counter the genre expectation that everything's going to work out


*****************END OF SPOILERS***************************


Quoted from Scoob
The real highlight for me was in the dialouge. The way the characters interacted with eachother was cleverly written, and some of the lines in this are priceless.

Thanks, I think dialogue will turn out to be my strong suit - I just need to remember it's a visual medium!


Thanks again. I posted a review of Malevolent III (not sure if you've seen it) but haven't given it quite the attention you gave this because I thought it sounded like you'd pretty much decided to can it. Let me know if you'd like me to flesh out that review, though, or in fact look at any other of your scripts.

Cheers

Adam



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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mikep
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The first 15-20 pages worked fine for me. Ben had a very funny introduction ( I didn't think of Stiller here, I'm more along your lines, but I'd prefer to hit him with a large sock full of horse manure) and we get to meet Soph right away which I liked a lot. The triangle is skillfully set up I feel, we get to see what we need to see right off, and later you add nuance to all.

Towards the end, for me there WAS suspense as to if Soph was going to show up. Events became so bittersweet, I was thinking the resolution would be Ben patching things with David and maybe some final voice mail from Soph , something to twist the knife just once more lol. I was fully prepared to see Ben walk off alone and was glad to see Soph come back. It's true usually in this genre , boy does find girl in the end but there's always the exception and you had me doubting the outcome.

Again I just can't say enough about the dialogue here, it's fresh, funny and never ever reads as forced. There are so many good lines here, not just funny ones, but things like Beth's " Tell me, is it hell being in love with her?" that made me stop reading for a moment. Lines that made me wish I had written the script. I hate you.

I didn't find any typos, at least nothing jumped out at me, and I didn't see any formatting problems. The bit with Pooley wearing the ring and Matt having it back, you can either address it or not. Addressing it right away might take away from the impact of the laugh -maybe when Matt gives it to her he says "never mind the bits of soap and Pooley on it" or she says "it's greasy" Matt: I had to oil down a fierce beast to get it back" - whatever, I'd resolve it with a throwaway line. And if you DON'T specifically mention it, I think it's understood he gets it back.

You should be proud of this one, both Scoob and I admitted we had to stop what we were doing and finish it right away,,,and Hell I was at work!


13 feature scripts, 2 short subjects. One sale, 4 options. Nothing filmed. Damn.

Currently rewriting another writer's SciFi script for an indie producer in L.A.
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Limey
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Quoted from mikep
I hate you.

Ha, being hated by one's peers - what more can a writer aspire to?  


Quoted from mikep
The bit with Pooley wearing the ring and Matt having it back, you can either address it or not. Addressing it right away might take away from the impact of the laugh -maybe when Matt gives it to her he says "never mind the bits of soap and Pooley on it" or she says "it's greasy" Matt: I had to oil down a fierce beast to get it back" - whatever, I'd resolve it with a throwaway line. And if you DON'T specifically mention it, I think it's understood he gets it back.

I'm glad Hoody pointed it out because I'd forgotten that audiences can be picky about this sort of thing but as you say it'll be hard to add anything without it seeming out of place. I am tempted to just leave it as it is but I'll see what I can come up with.


Quoted from mikep
Scoob and I admitted we had to stop what we were doing and finish it right away,,,and Hell I was at work!

Ha ha, hope you've still got a job  

Cheers


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Shelton
Posted: February 15th, 2008, 1:38pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Adam,

Was looking for something to read on the light side, and figured this would be a good choice.

I noticed that you had mentioned having some trouble with defining this as a Comedy or Drama, and I can certainly see why.  To be honest, I don't think it really falls heavily into either one, it's more of a straight romance script.  But, since SS doesn't have a romance section, I would have to say that this is better defined as a drama.  There's some good comedic stuff in here, but a lot of the conflicts the characters face are pretty dramatic (infidelity, cancer...etc.)

That being said, I didn't stress too much on genre as I read, and I did enjoy the script.  I  don't think you need to include the countdown as the flashback story progresses, but that's not an overly big deal.

I was really hoping to see more of Beth since she was my favorite of the secondary characters, but that'd be kind of hard considering the way you cut things off with her.  Maybe a little more of her prior to that?

I ended up being a little confused with the ring thing near the end myself, but just assumed that you chose not to show him getting the ring back, which was fine.  I will admit to thinking that Matt was going to give her an empty box though, which would have been pretty damn funny and made Soph even more pissed off.

Pooley served a pretty good purpose I think in having the place that Ben ends up moving to, and I think when David shows up there is his best scene.

Also, in regards to your first 15 pages or so.  I think they work fine, but don't serve as  a hook.  Maybe add a scene in with Ben and Pooley out the night before where we get a better idea of Ben's "near hopelesness".

Anyway, just some random thoughts for you.  Use what you like and discount the rest.

Oh, and I don't remember which page it was, but you have a typo in there "photo dairy".  I think it's near the middle of the script.

Nice work.


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"I think I did pretty well, considering I started out with nothing but a bunch of blank paper." - Steve Martin
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Limey
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Hi Mike (S)

Thanks for the read. Sounds like it wasn't quite what you were expecting but I hope it was suitably entertaining anyway.


Quoted from Shelton
I  don't think you need to include the countdown as the flashback story progresses, but that's not an overly big deal.

Yeah, this was my attempt at adding a sense of increasing suspense, trying to show that we're drawing nearer and nearer to some important event. Guess it didn't really work for you  


Quoted from Shelton
I was really hoping to see more of Beth since she was my favorite of the secondary characters, but that'd be kind of hard considering the way you cut things off with her.  Maybe a little more of her prior to that?

She's my favourite, too. I tried a scene or two of her and Ben dating but ultimately felt it didn't really add to the story and cut them for length. Might see what I can do in the rewrite.


Quoted from Shelton
I will admit to thinking that Matt was going to give her an empty box though, which would have been pretty damn funny and made Soph even more pissed off.

Ha, didn't think of that! I'll see if I can clarify it


Quoted from Shelton
Also, in regards to your first 15 pages or so.  I think they work fine, but don't serve as  a hook.

Yeah, there's something missing. I was hoping the flashback would draw people in but I need to find something else as well, I think


Quoted from Shelton
Oh, and I don't remember which page it was, but you have a typo in there "photo dairy".

Ah, the old diary/dairy typo - I've been making that one for the last 20+ years. Thanks for pointing it out.


Thanks again for the read

Adam


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/

Revision History (1 edits)
Limey  -  February 16th, 2008, 5:51am
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alffy
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Hey Adam sorry for the delay in my review.  Excuse anything that’s already been mentioned.

I must admit I read the word ‘romantic’ and shuddered.  If there’s one thing that brings me out in a cold sweat it that word.  Thankfully the word comedy was in there too, and that drew me in.

It’s nice to read a Brit flick.  Love the Britishness of the V’s and tea drinking.

Bottom of page 6 you write that Ben ponders before dropping the letter.  A little petty but this isn’t written in the present tense, should be Ben ponders then drops the letter.

Your next Slug’s a bit confusing.  You have a super with a count down but you don’t super the 8 years earlier?

Jammy Dodgers, mmm I love jammy dodgers, you just made me go to tesco.

‘Haemorrhaging food’.  Love this line.

Not sure you need things like ‘previous week’ in your slugs.  The viewer wouldn’t know.

Page 15 Susan and Kerry aren’t really introduced, I’m nit picking again lol.

The chemistry between Soph and Ben is excellent.  You’ve nailed that sexual tension, Ben’s joke cracking and Soph’s laughter is very believable.  It’s also very funny in places, always good in a romantic comedy.

Oh what’s with the flashbacks, I’m all intrigued!  Not sure bout the count down though.

I have to admit Ben is very likeable character.  The awkward flirting and using comedy as a distraction from it, it kinda reminds me of… well a younger me lol.

I’ve noticed Soph does a lot of arm punching…does someone punch her in the face for it later?  It might be a bit annoying.  Also the comedy is a bit relentless at the moment.  It’s very funny, I’ve chuckled out loud a few times, and got some strange stares from my fiancée in the process but 30 pages in I’m still waiting for the story to really kick in.  I guess the flashbacks play an important role?

When Soph asks who David and Karen are, Matt says ‘his brother’?  This just reads a bit odd to me.  I think he’d say ‘David’s his brother or somet.

Right I’m up to page 30 and I’m gonna stop cos Ant and Dec are on…did I just say that!  Anywho I’ve been really impressed so far, the dialogue flows realistically and like I said your characters are likeable.  A good love triangle and plenty of branching story lines that will hopefully fill in the background.  I’ll defo be back to finish this as soon as I can.  Sorry it took so long for me to start, moving house soon so things a bit hectic lol.


Check out my scripts...if you want to, no pressure.

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Limey
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Quoted from alffy
Right I'm up to page 30 and I'm gonna stop cos Ant and Dec are on -did I just say that!

Ant and Dec!?! Mate, that really hurts... worse than a kick in the nuts. Not sure I can ever forgive this  


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Limey  -  February 17th, 2008, 7:38am
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alffy
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OK I’m back…

Beth reads her book on the night bus?  I guess it’s pretty late as Ben and Matt have been drinking so it just seems a bit weird that Beth is sat on a bus of drunks reading.

I may have read this wrong but when they are roller skating I thought Matt was in front, as he pushed Ben away, but Soph pushes Matt in front of Ben?  Oh wait I get it now…they skating backwards aren’t they lol.

The toilet scene is very funny, had me chuckling as I pictured it.

The chat between Ben and Soph was good, it showed how the characters are getting closer and showed them in a serious light.

‘Thanks for the sex, you tried really hard’ ouch! Lol

I like the way you describe the looks between the characters but I’m not sure everyone will take to them?

Love the Uri Geller joke.

Pooley’s character is funny.

Jesus, page 96 and I think I’ve seen my first grammatical error, you missed out ‘a’ I think when David says ‘let’s go for walk’?

A nice Spinal Tap reference thrown in there.

When David slaps Ben’s hands, wouldn’t David notice his cut and wouldn’t Ben show some pain?

Oh so close…a camera direction right at the end! Lol.  I know it was the only way to show what you wanted so I’ll let you off.

OK finished, sorry I didn’t comment much in the second half.  It’s not cos I was bored or anything, I was too involved lol.  Like I mentioned, I only noticed one mistake which is very impressive.  I didn’t think I’d like this as much as I did, not really my kind of movie but I guess the best thing I can say about it is…If I had to take our lass to the cinema to watch something romantic I’d pick this hands down.  The comedy was really funny and the twist at the end came out of the blue to me, I only twig moments before.

This was very impressive and I really enjoyed it.  My only negative comment will be that it was a bit wet at the end lol.  Shouldn’t finish with a negative comment but that’s the only thing I could come up with.

Good stuff Adam.


Check out my scripts...if you want to, no pressure.

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Limey
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Hey Alffy

Thanks for the read, mate - hope all the romantic slush didn't impinge too much on your no nonsense northerness    


Quoted from alffy
I have to admit Ben is very likeable character.  The awkward flirting and using comedy as a distraction from it, it kinda reminds me of… well a younger me lol.

Ha ha, we've all been there


Quoted from alffy
Also the comedy is a bit relentless at the moment.  It’s very funny, I’ve chuckled out loud a few times, and got some strange stares from my fiancée in the process but 30 pages in I’m still waiting for the story to really kick in.  I guess the flashbacks play an important role?

Guess it builds a bit slowly for you, then. When did you "get into it" (or didn't you?  )


Quoted from alffy
Beth reads her book on the night bus?  I guess it’s pretty late as Ben and Matt have been drinking so it just seems a bit weird that Beth is sat on a bus of drunks reading.

London's a strange place! You do see it now and then but I guess it does come across as odd. Maybe I could just have her listening to an iPod or something.


Quoted from alffy
The toilet scene is very funny, had me chuckling as I pictured it.

Ha ha, it's based on personal experience - beer, skates and urinals don't mix.


Quoted from alffy
A nice Spinal Tap reference thrown in there.

Glad someone picked up on it. Awesome film.


Quoted from alffy
When David slaps Ben’s hands, wouldn’t David notice his cut and wouldn’t Ben show some pain?

Yes, very good point sir. I'll have to sort that out


Quoted from alffy
I didn’t think I’d like this as much as I did, not really my kind of movie but I guess the best thing I can say about it is…If I had to take our lass to the cinema to watch something romantic I’d pick this hands down.  The comedy was really funny and the twist at the end came out of the blue to me, I only twig moments before.

Thanks for persevering - hope it wasn't too painful  


Quoted from alffy
My only negative comment will be that it was a bit wet at the end lol.  Shouldn’t finish with a negative comment but that’s the only thing I could come up with.

Yeah, need to tone it down a bit. I'm just a big old softy.


Cheers

Adam



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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alffy
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Quoted from Limey

hope all the romantic slush didn't impinge too much on your no nonsense northerness    


Lol...after reading this I had to go stand outside for over an hour in the freezing cold with my shirt off, just so I felt northern again.


Quoted from Limey

When did you "get into it" (or didn't you?  )


Straight away.


Quoted from Limey

Thanks for persevering - hope it wasn't too painful  


Not at all, it was very entertaining.  In my opinion, this is much better than most of the romantic cack Hollywood throws on us.




Check out my scripts...if you want to, no pressure.

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RobertSpence
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Adam,
          Just finished your script and I have to say, it's great. There are many things in this script which make it stand out from other romantic comedies that are released today, and that dimension of Britishness you bring to it makes this screenplay succesful in a large way.

PLOT - Firstly, no argues with the plot at all. I feel everything you brought up, you tied off effectively with no large loose ends, well done with that. Only problem I have is with the whole Beth introduction. I feel she was a good character and you could have shown another meeting with Ben and her before introducing her to Matt and Soph. I think this was done too quicky, I mean she "dumps" him when it was alluded they only arranged to meet like once. I feel yes, this character was integral to trying to make Soph jealous and for revealing other things, but maybe just a little scene added in there would make it look ok when she turns around and decides to end things because then the reader/audience will actually believe they went out, if you get what I am saying. As for your ending, I loved it, taking us back to the Pier that virtually destroyed Ben was a very good idea to convey how he has beaten it and forgiven his brother. However I feel you could add a few more signs throughout the script to show just how affected Ben is by what happened to him. Oh and that reminds me, only one thing bothered me. Page 31 - Not a strong enough reason not to get the cab home, I feel something else should cause him not to get in. Yeah this was needed so he could meet Beth but I don't think "his morals" is a good enough reason. I got strong morals but I wouldn't pass up a taxi journey, even if the driver was a fake (let alone let my mate get in the car).


CHARACTERISATION - Nothing wrong with any of your characters other than the fact I feel Beth could be used more. Ben is pretty solid, has many dimensions and he is your protagonist which is what you want. I started to dislike Matt throughout, seemed like a large perv, aye a bit pervy is fine but he just starts to become a complete wally. No real arguments with Soph, but there are some moments where she comes across as completely annoying, which brings me to the punching issue. Why does she keep doing that? Maybe a couple of playful punches but I she kept doing it and it kept getting more annoying. Slightly reminded me of a girl Joey dated in "Friends" that kept pounding him everytime he told a joke. Pooley was great in the few scenes he was in. His one liners were great and he lightened the mood when it struck. Liked when they were in the pub ad he was eavesdropping on the girls conversations and replies with bollocks and so on. He is a great character and serves his purpose.

DIALOGUE - Youre dialogue was very good throughout the script. No real moments where I thought it lacked. You did a great job in making me laugh out loud at certain points. More of it in the first act of story. Lines like "Give me cheeky", "there's a lot of your arse" and "Girl, you're going to be walking like John Wayne" were fantastic.

Genre - Because I'm really into the rom com genre, I took one look at this and started to read. But as I read Mike saying above, it would be hard to categorise this script because there is a lage case of drama throughout. In terms of bankability, I think you have a good concept and a fairly original story. Unlike my script which I totally looked back and picked up upon, I can see that everything you have added to your script was highly thought out and original, no cliches and so on. I also like this because it is British and the dialogue was genuine. I could see this script being made because the budget would be next to nothing, and because you are from London you could possibly try Working Title. Loved the jammy dodgers line, they are that damn good.

STRUCTURE - Good, everything happened when it needed to in order to continue the story.

EFFECTS - I read above and some people didn't like the timer type thing evertime you took us back to Brighton. I thought it was unique and should definetely stay in the script. Yeah, cliche as it is, I didn't see any montages or anything in the script. Maybe this could add a few things, possibly about Ben meeting with Beth.

Overall, I thought your script was very good, had a unique voice, great spin on a somewhat predictable genre, and your great sense of realism made me identify with the characters and plot. Good work, a pretty solid script.


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Scripts

Reservoir Pups

Short Comedy 14 pages

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1348865321/

The Break-Up Chronicles


Short Comedy/Drama 20 pages

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1388849749/s-0/#num4
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Limey
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Hey Robert

Thanks for reading this, mate, I really appreciate it.


Quoted from RobertSpence
I feel she [Beth] was a good character and you could have shown another meeting with Ben and her before introducing her to Matt and Soph. I think this was done too quicky, I mean she "dumps" him when it was alluded they only arranged to meet like once. I feel yes, this character was integral to trying to make Soph jealous and for revealing other things, but maybe just a little scene added in there would make it look ok when she turns around and decides to end things because then the reader/audience will actually believe they went out, if you get what I am saying.

You're the second person to mention this, so I guess it's something I need to take another look at. I did have a scene or two of them dating but felt they ultimately just slowed things down. I'll see what I can come up with.


Quoted from RobertSpence
Page 31 - Not a strong enough reason not to get the cab home, I feel something else should cause him not to get in. Yeah this was needed so he could meet Beth but I don't think "his morals" is a good enough reason.

It was also included to show just how strong his morals are and that he's a bit sanctimonious but I agree there's something about it that doesn't quite work. Something to look at in the next rewrite.


Quoted from RobertSpence
Soph, but there are some moments where she comes across as completely annoying, which brings me to the punching issue. Why does she keep doing that?

Again, you're the second person to bring it up so it'll be getting some attention in the rewrite  


Quoted from RobertSpence
I could see this script being made because the budget would be next to nothing

Yeah, I tried to keep locations etc minimal. Fingers crossed it works!


Quoted from RobertSpence
I read above and some people didn't like the timer type thing evertime you took us back to Brighton. I thought it was unique and should definetely stay in the script.

Good man, I agree!  


Thanks again for the read. Good to know I'm not the only RomCom fan out there  

Cheers

Adam



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Scoob
Posted: February 19th, 2008, 10:23pm Report to Moderator
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Hi Adam,


Quoted Text
Careful... Ben Stiller's one of those people I'd never get tired of hitting in the face >


Heh, I dont mind him but sorry for making a reference to someone you obviously are not too keen on I was thinking more of his character from Something About Mary in resemblance.


Quoted Text
Anything you think I could change to have got you into it faster?


I think the way you have it start out is fine, it was just me trying to really grasp who the characters were and then finding what was going to happen. I dont think the plot really opens up until the 20-25 page part and I think that is pretty much perfect. I wouldnt really change much from the first act - but the humour on from this point was much more funnier and seemed more fluent and continuous from that point on.


Quoted Text
Thanks. I've tried to put some real drama into the script rather than the watered down nods towards conflict you usually get in RomComs. Glad you think it works.


I think you did a great job. You made it clear how serious an illness it was and the drama worked but it never made the script become morbid because there was always a light hearted moment that followed. I thought you dealt with the issue really well and in a very respectable manner.  There are some comedies that just like to be in bad taste for the sake of it and there is a time for every taste, but Im glad you took this route as it suits the script and it did give it more depth and feeling.



Quoted Text
Did that red herring work? It's really hard to counter the genre expectation that everything's going to work out


It worked for me, I was getting pretty concerned! It seems a couple of other readers did also so I would say it worked very well. It was a great ending, although I would have liked maybe Beth to have coincidently ended up on the plane with Matt heh ( I think the ending was fine seriously, but Matt did crack me up )



Quoted Text
Thanks, I think dialogue will turn out to be my strong suit - I just need to remember it's a visual medium!


Apart from describing houses and buildings, I was entertained by the characters and that what moved the script along and made me visualize what was happening anyway. I think you did fine - especially for something that does not need all that much description. If you put too much in, no doubt it would be a case of too much tell and no see. I think you did fine on both.


Malc



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Private Message Reply: 21 - 31
JD_OK
Posted: February 20th, 2008, 4:03am Report to Moderator
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You are miss using ur "..." there are for dialog. to indicate a pause, so u dont have to say (beat)... beats r to be used sparely

day and night only in slugs

pg 7. You dont need THEN after David and karen, since this would be their first introduction. Just DAVID (24)

pg 7 No camera directions should be n  spec. Write it ithout saying it
pg 14, u have sarah and keely talking and they were never introduced
pg 18 " my man bits" - funny
pg 31 " ur mum" lol, good one

by pg 33, You havent hit ur end of act one, end of old world

by page 38, yet still to end of act one, now becuz of this ur script is dragging. I'm not feeling any goals for any of the

characters. No one is trying to achieve toward something. Just seems like days in their lives.

Side note REGARDING FORMAT****

As of now, script is filled with over description and telling rather then showing. The descriptions are over worded, you want

to say the most with the fewest words as possible. White space is ur friend and PA readers like to see it. See at times ur

scripts reads like a book with  telling and overly details which do not push the plot forward.

And alot of unnecessary INSERTS
*************************************

page 40, finally the end of act one come with him being asked to move out and yes...it comes way too late. You have alot of

cutting to do to get this by 30, removing alot from ur descriptions should help alot.

Your (over phone) should be under character name
pg 52, I really like a better reason or reason why Matt is hardly ever around and Ben is always around with Soph. Matt

should be also realizing the are spending too much time together by now

pg 57,dumping , i dont think it suits the situation well right here to say that word. Also since its their first date and there doesnt

seem to be any real bad blood between them to say "dumping"

63 ben admitting to matt and the fight would be raising the stakes and it should hit by pg55
Matt:" Dont send smoke signals" Thats real good line, i like it
pg 65 u say to inter cut ( which i think u place these wrong throughout) so u dont need the SLUGS between thm talking
"--" mean interrupted dialog, not "toni..." TONI--"

pg 70, lol "ill need mug shots" U do have some good funnys moments througout the script

pg 77 'all is lost' when soph turning on Ben. Funny I would think this would be far off too, but its only 2 pages ahead of pg 75

where it should happen by

82. I really like all ur reasoning  have for their fall outs and make ups. Very realistic
85 leaving on speaker phone only changes the voice coming out of the phone. Not the mic, so that line isn't right.
90 periond after MR(.)
95, hmm everything was goin to good and ur basic setup of a cliche that u made it ur own from beginning to here.  The girl

leaving town, please come up with something different, cuz as always it follows the guy chasing after what he lost.
Like me she does this thing and u keep it the same but she is outside his house waiting to see after he reads if he comes

running after her and he like " hey, your still here", so it turns back to let hearted/comedy and they go together to see his

bother and Matt is left thinking she went to zurich, cuz it got serios real quick after matt got there and that serious tune stayed.

Just something different this those whole ending cliche

104. Ok u got me! u did good, predictable from long way that his brother stole the girl, but what u did works here.

I like the story and I can see it being made. Now alot of the dialog doesnt makes sense but that is cuz i dont know British

slang/talk, but u had good amount of actual funny things.

But the dialog was defiantly ur strong suit here and its flowed well.

Characters were all good,well ur main ones that moved the script along.

Biggest gripe I have is ur bad format. Tightening these up and getting rid of ur things u dont need to be indicating in the strong

which doesnt push it forward needs to be removed and ur sentences shorter.

The structure should fall better in place when this is done.


Newton's Cradle - action/fantasy, 10th draft 109pgs pdf

IN QUEUE - Comedy - Coming soon!


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Private Message AIM YIM Reply: 22 - 31
Limey
Posted: February 20th, 2008, 4:40am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Scoob
I wouldnt really change much from the first act - but the humour on from this point was much more funnier and seemed more fluent and continuous from that point on.

You're right, the humour in the first act is still something I'm not quite happy with. I can't tell you how much I've struggled with those first 15 pages.... grrrrrrrr  >


Quoted from Scoob
It was a great ending, although I would have liked maybe Beth to have coincidently ended up on the plane with Matt heh

You great big softy!

Cheers


Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Private Message Reply: 23 - 31
Limey
Posted: February 20th, 2008, 5:13am Report to Moderator
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Hey JD

Thanks for the read, it's much appreciated


Quoted from JD_OK
You are miss using ur "..." there are for dialog. to indicate a pause, so u dont have to say (beat)... beats r to be used sparely

I think this is writer's choice - a number of screenwriting books I have list this as a valid method and I like it because "..." can be used as a short pause and "beat" as a longer one. But maybe this is giving too much direction to the actors.


Quoted from JD_OK
pg 14, u have sarah and keely talking and they were never introduced

Good catch, I'll add in introductions for them


Quoted from JD_OK
by pg 33, You havent hit ur end of act one, end of old world

The end of Act 1 is at the bottom of page 23 - at this stage all the characters' worlds have been irreversibly altered - Soph has found the birthday card, Ben has taken the decision to go with her to Helen's - to become part of her life, and this in turn has started to place a strain on Soph's relationship with Matt.


Quoted from JD_OK
by page 38... I'm not feeling any goals for any of the characters. No one is trying to achieve toward something. Just seems like days in their lives.

Soph's conscious goal is to "live life for Helen", which I tried to show through the photographs, reference to climbing etc - generally being active. Her subconscious goal, however, is to be free from Helen - this first starts to manifest itself in the scene where the climbing trip is cancelled. Ben's conscious goal, once he starts to fall for Soph, is not to act on his feelings. His subconscious goal, however, is to be able to justify "making a pass" at her. Hence he's stuck with the awkward flirting and going with her to Helen's etc - a sort of halfway house where he's "hoping" he can make her make the first move by being "a great guy". Sorry if these don't come across - I admit, they're not presented in an "in your face" kind of way.


Quoted from JD_OK
As of now, script is filled with over description and telling rather then showing. The descriptions are over worded, you want to say the most with the fewest words as possible. White space is ur friend and PA readers like to see it. See at times ur

Are you refering to the way I describe characters' looks and reactions, because I think that's really the only thing I spend space on in the blackstuff. I think it's important to include these because if a character's not speaking (show don't tell) how does the reader know what they're reaction is to another character unless I describe it? I think it's particularly important in this kind of script where everything is driven by the characters' interactions.


Quoted from JD_OK
And alot of unnecessary INSERTS

Ha ha, someone else mentioned this. I'll take a look  


Quoted from JD_OK
I really like a better reason or reason why Matt is hardly ever around and Ben is always around with Soph.

Fair point, I'll see what I can add in


Quoted from JD_OK
pg 57,dumping , i dont think it suits the situation well right here to say that word. Also since its their first date and there doesnt seem to be any real bad blood between them to say "dumping"

This is definitely something I need to rework. Ben and Beth have actually been going out for a while and I need to make that clearer - I cut the scenes of them dating for pacing purposes but it's obviously caused problems as a number of people have mentioned it. Thanks for pointing it out.


Quoted from JD_OK
63 ben admitting to matt and the fight would be raising the stakes and it should hit by pg55

The halfway point is when Soph breaks down and Ben comforts her at the Motorway Services - ends on page 52. From this point on their relationship has reached a new, deeper level - she knows she can confide in him and he's prepared to listen and help. Soph's relationship with Helen and hence her outlook on life changes as a result and this then impacts her relationship with Matt... which in turn places greater pressure on Ben and makes it harder for him to follow his conscious goal of "not falling for Soph". Phew, that was a mouthful.


Quoted from JD_OK
82. I really like all ur reasoning  have for their fall outs and make ups. Very realistic

Thanks, I've tried for an element of realism.


Quoted from JD_OK
104. Ok u got me! u did good, predictable from long way that his brother stole the girl, but what u did works here.

Ha ha, glad to hear it  


Thanks again for the read

Cheers

Adam



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Private Message Reply: 24 - 31
JD_OK
Posted: February 21st, 2008, 3:18am Report to Moderator
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Glad to me of service. Anything u wanted to know I didnt mention?


Newton's Cradle - action/fantasy, 10th draft 109pgs pdf

IN QUEUE - Comedy - Coming soon!


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Private Message AIM YIM Reply: 25 - 31
Limey
Posted: February 21st, 2008, 9:58am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JD_OK
Glad to me of service. Anything u wanted to know I didnt mention?

Actually you did mention this but I forgot to ask - when did you catch on to the fact that David "stole" Karen from Ben? Sounds like you saw it early on. Anything you think I could change to make it less obvious?

Cheers



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Private Message Reply: 26 - 31
JD_OK
Posted: February 21st, 2008, 11:40pm Report to Moderator
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Well u start off the flash backs with Davis, Ben and KAREN

obviously since she not in the picture with him and u show David and Karen together with a baby after the "accidental call" from ben. Since there is bad blood with them.. he stole the girl. I would get rid of karen in the flash backs until the very last one, as where David and her come out and say like "she is pregnant" or something that says they r together and he is sorry.

O and that one line matt says" Girl stealer must run in the family" well what he said was almost a spoiler on it that shold be changed


Newton's Cradle - action/fantasy, 10th draft 109pgs pdf

IN QUEUE - Comedy - Coming soon!


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Private Message AIM YIM Reply: 27 - 31
spesh2k
Posted: February 29th, 2008, 7:30pm Report to Moderator
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Adam,

So I read Red Balloons and Rollercoasters. I don't really like romcoms too much, but I thought your script pretty good. You're characters were well drawn out and you put a lot of thought into them. All of them were very well rounded. All of them were likeable, but they had dimensions to their personalities that made them complex, and a few of your characters unlikeable at times.

My favorite character was Ben, which is a good thing since he's your protagonist. I thought the strong points of your script were in the scenes with Ben and Soph. The dialogue was always sharp between the two, especially when Matt was not in the room. The best dialogue was between Ben and Beth. It's a shame Beth was only in the script briefly -- she was very sharp and very likeable.

As for the premise...it's been done before and done often. A guy falls in love with his best friend's girl. There's even a few songs about the same premise (I Wish That I Had Jesse's Girl). The story was somewhat predictable, but your snappy dialogue and strong characters really held it together and kept my interest through out.

Overally, the structure was okay, but at times I thought the flashbacks were confusing. Case in point...on page 11 when you say PREVIOUS WEEK in the slugline. I had to actually go back to realize that it was a flashback. It made sense after reading it again, but it did slow down the read a bit.

Another thing that confused me at first were the flashbacks with David and Karen. It's not until 15 or so pages after they're introduced that we find out who they are. And I didn't feel that each flashback revealed enough new information every time. It wasn't until the end that we, the audience, are shown that Karen was Ben's girlfriend and that his brother, David ended up taking her away from him.

Though the flashbacks did confuse me a bit, the transitions from flashback to present time were good (the noise from the roller coaster transitioning into loud noises in present time). The roller coaster, seems to me, has the same purpose as they do in Annie Hall -- to show turbulence in a person's life.

You have some really funny one-liners. Ex. When Beth says, "Thanks for the sex...you tried really hard" -- good stuff. I also like when Beth and Ben talk on the phone -- BETH: OK. Have you seen "Stomp"? BEN: No. But I've read the book". -- very witty conversation.

As for format, a few things threw me off.

When you go from INT. MATT'S HOUSE. LOUNGE and then say Ben walks into the kitchen you have INT. MATT'S HOUSE. KITCHEN. You don't have to put INT. again. It almost felt like a whole different location.

One thing that really bugged me, though, were the constant ellipses (...) in the dialogue, and especially the action blocks. A lot of the action blocks end with...as if it were like a TO BE CONTINUED, but we get the rest of the information on the next action line. You'd save some space by taking out the ellipses.

Also, in the dialogue, you often use ellipses and (beat). You don't really have to use beat if you already have the ellipses. They can both be used for pauses in dialogue, or ellipses can be used in dialgue when someone trails off a bit. You do use the ... when someone trails off a few times, but then you reveal in the next action block that the character trails off, which is not economically wise. Also, you use them at times when a character interrupts. I guess I don't have much of a beef with that, but using -- at the end of a dialogue to show someone interrupting seems easier to follow.

There were times in the descriptions where you don't really show us what's going on, but rather you tell us.

For instance on page 4 you have -- The champagne is finished and Ben is now dressed in genuine Swiss Liederhosen. -- This doesn't really paint much of a picture. You could just write -- an empty champagne bottle sits on the table as Ben, dressed in Swiss Lederhosen, and Matt sip tea.

Also, on page 5 -- SOPH: You're toasting Hemmingway? Then you write -- Soph creeps in freshly showered and grinning at her own joke. -- We already can tell that she was joking by her dialogue, you should just say -- Soph creeps in, freshly showered, and grins.

A few questions about some things, maybe it's cultural references that I don't understand...

What's Jammy Dodgers?
Who's Ems?

Anyway, I might've been nitpicking a little bit with your formatting, but I thought your story was pretty good, once again the strong point being the characters and razor sharp dialogue.

Thanks for the read...


THE SUICIDE THEORY (Amazon Prime, 79% Rotten Tomatoes) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt2517300/?ref_=nm_knf_i1
RAGE (Coming Feb. 2021) https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8874764/?ref_=nm_knf_i2

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Private Message Reply: 28 - 31
Limey
Posted: March 3rd, 2008, 5:05pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Michael

Thanks very much for the review, especially considering you don't like RomComs  


Quoted from spesh2k
It's a shame Beth was only in the script briefly -- she was very sharp and very likeable.

By popular demand (well a couple of people mentioning it) I have added another short sequence with Beth and Ben in the latest draft.


Quoted from spesh2k
As for the premise...it's been done before and done often. A guy falls in love with his best friend's girl. There's even a few songs about the same premise (I Wish That I Had Jesse's Girl). The story was somewhat predictable, but your snappy dialogue and strong characters really held it together and kept my interest through out.

Yep, I can't really claim this is a groundbreaking premise. Glad you felt the characters and dialogue held it together.


Quoted from spesh2k
Overally, the structure was okay, but at times I thought the flashbacks were confusing. Case in point...on page 11 when you say PREVIOUS WEEK in the slugline. I had to actually go back to realize that it was a flashback. It made sense after reading it again, but it did slow down the read a bit.

Agreed. I never liked that flashback and it's gone in the current rewrite.


Quoted from spesh2k
Another thing that confused me at first were the flashbacks with David and Karen. It's not until 15 or so pages after they're introduced that we find out who they are. And I didn't feel that each flashback revealed enough new information every time. It wasn't until the end that we, the audience, are shown that Karen was Ben's girlfriend and that his brother, David ended up taking her away from him.

True. These flashbacks are more for a "sensory" experience than to relay information - I wanted them to inject a bit of intrigue and give a sense that we are moving inexorably towards some momentus event. That said, they are effectively in their first draft forms (I only added them this draft) so they still need tweaking.


Quoted from spesh2k
One thing that really bugged me, though, were the constant ellipses (...) in the dialogue, and especially the action blocks. A lot of the action blocks end with...as if it were like a TO BE CONTINUED, but we get the rest of the information on the next action line. You'd save some space by taking out the ellipses.

Yeah, when I read through the script again before starting on the rewrite I noticed there are far too many and I've cut a lot out. But I'm keeping some because I like them  


Quoted from spesh2k
Also, you use them at times when a character interrupts. I guess I don't have much of a beef with that, but using -- at the end of a dialogue to show someone interrupting seems easier to follow.

I've changed the dialogue to use "--" for interrupting - thanks for pointing that out.


Quoted from spesh2k
For instance on page 4 you have -- The champagne is finished and Ben is now dressed in genuine Swiss Liederhosen. -- This doesn't really paint much of a picture. You could just write -- an empty champagne bottle sits on the table as Ben, dressed in Swiss Lederhosen, and Matt sip tea.

Again, thanks for pointing this out. I've made some changes in the current rewrite.


Quoted from spesh2k
What's Jammy Dodgers?

They're a type of cookie with a jelly (jam) filling


Quoted from spesh2k
Who's Ems?

She was just one of Matt's exes, the "one that got away"


Cheers and thanks for the read

Adam



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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Private Message Reply: 29 - 31
dresseme
Posted: March 4th, 2008, 12:43pm Report to Moderator
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Limey-

Ok, so normally I start writing my initial thoughts on a script after I get to page 30, but I didn't end up doing that for this script.  Mainly because I didn't really know what to think by page 30.   I know you've expressed concern for the first part of your script, and I think I might suggest a re-write is in order.  The first part of your script just tended to drag a lot for me, and having not read the logline, I just kept asking myself "What is this story about?"

Once the story got moving, however, I found it to be pretty interesting.  Your dialogue is pretty solid, and while your formatting seemed to be a bit off at a few points, it didn't take me out of the story.

I did have a few problems with the script that stick out in my mind.  One, and I'm sure you're sick of hearing it; the story's been done so many times before.  So much to the point where I could basically map out every single turn it was going to take several pages before it happened.   But no one else seems to really have a problem with it, so maybe it's just me.

Two, the ending was really abrupt.   When I turned the page to see it was the end I could barely believe it.  I don't know what more I wanted, but it just seemed to be lacking.  I mean, you have the revelation of the roller coaster incident on the very page you end on.  It just seemed like you should have had some type of epilogue.

Three, and this relates to one, you might really want to consider changing it up a bit.  I found it difficult to care about the characters b/c I just found them all fitting into these stereotypical rom-com roles, placed in their usual places in the formula.  The jerk boyfriend, the hopeless romantic, the crazy/quirky friend, etc.  And because I always knew where everything was going, I never really cared too much for them.  I hope this makes sense.

I don't mean to bash your script b/c I did enjoy it.  I just think that it could be changed up a bit.  Throw in some unexpected twists and turns.  Maybe a b-plot not usual to most rom-coms.  

Good work though, ya limey bastard.  (Sorry, just wanted to say that.)  

-Matt
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Limey
Posted: March 5th, 2008, 5:58am Report to Moderator
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Hey Matt, ya yankee... er... b*stard (just returning the favour   )

Thanks for the read and sorry it didn't do much for you - I guess you can't please everyone.


Quoted from dresseme
I know you've expressed concern for the first part of your script, and I think I might suggest a re-write is in order.

Yep, still working on it. Think I have something better but still not perfect.


Quoted from dresseme
The first part of your script just tended to drag a lot for me, and having not read the logline, I just kept asking myself "What is this story about?"

I thought you said you could map out every turn before it happened...?   Just kidding


Quoted from dresseme
your formatting seemed to be a bit off at a few points, it didn't take me out of the story.

Anything in particular? I cut out a lot of the "..." in the latest rewrite and used "--" to show interruptions. Is there anything else I need to worry about?


Quoted from dresseme
One, and I'm sure you're sick of hearing it; the story's been done so many times before.  So much to the point where I could basically map out every single turn it was going to take several pages before it happened.   But no one else seems to really have a problem with it, so maybe it's just me.

It's a fair point but I didn't intend this to be about "what's going to happen" as much as "why it's going to happen". To be honest there's very little that hasn't been done in this genre - there's only so many obstacles to love - and what I hate is that most RomComs rely on increasingly fantastical situations in an attempt to be "unique". This, for me, makes them so unrealistic that I just can't get into the world of the characters and as a result never care about what's going to happen, regardless of whether or not I can predict it. Here I'm much more concerned with the reader empathising with the characters and caring about what happens, even if they can pretty much guess what that might be. But it sounds like you didn't "buy" the characters so there probably wasn't much left to keep you interested. Sorry.


Quoted from dresseme
I found it difficult to care about the characters b/c I just found them all fitting into these stereotypical rom-com roles, placed in their usual places in the formula.  The jerk boyfriend, the hopeless romantic, the crazy/quirky friend, etc.

I agree they fit into stereotypical roles (hell, this is a RomCom and there are certain conventions) but what I've tried to do is make the characters themselves unique. Ben isn't your typical hopeless romantic - he's pretty bitter, sanctimonious and hypocritical and actually destroys his best mate's relationship (even if he's acting on a subconscious level). Yes, Matt's kind of a jerk but not in the usual sense where's he's simply using "the girl" for his own pleasure - he really loves Soph, he doesn't cheat on her, he tries to do nice things for her, he wants to marry her, he just doesn't, as he says, always know the right thing to do. But if these things don't come across in the script then it's bad writing on my part. As for the crazy/quirky friend... yeah, you got me on that one. Just as long as he's funny  


Quoted from dresseme
I don't mean to bash your script b/c I did enjoy it.  I just think that it could be changed up a bit.  Throw in some unexpected twists and turns.  Maybe a b-plot not usual to most rom-coms.

Bash away, I'm a grown-up, I can take it   . Seriously, though, if you feel there's nothing new here then I need to go back and take another look. In my mind I have some (what I consider to be) unique takes on the genre but it's quite possible they haven't come across because I haven't done them justice with my writing. I do think the Soph / Helen subplot is pretty unusual, though - can't remember seeing it in a RomCom before.


Quoted from dresseme
Two, the ending was really abrupt.   When I turned the page to see it was the end I could barely believe it.  I don't know what more I wanted, but it just seemed to be lacking.  I mean, you have the revelation of the roller coaster incident on the very page you end on.  It just seemed like you should have had some type of epilogue.

Ha, ha, I hate epilogues . I wanted the various plots (Ben/David, David/Karen, Ben/Soph and Soph/Matt) to all tie up in the same scene. And once they do, what more is there to show? I'm looking at maybe extending the final renunion of Ben and Soph a bit but as for an epilogue... unlikely.


Thanks again for the read. I'll have my review of Douchebag up by tomorrow night at the latest.

Cheers

Limey b*stard



Bored of shorts? Try a full length feature;

Red Balloons and Rollercoasters (Comedy / Romantic Dramedy)

Read it...

http://www.simplyscripts.com/scripts/REDBALLOONSANDROLLERCOASTERS.pdf

And rip it to shreds in a review...

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-comedy/m-1202674615/
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