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Just posting my thoughts on what I have read and will subsequently post when I finish.
About a fifth of the way in at the minute, and it's a testament to your writing that it's been an absolute breeze. Nice, quick read then. The set-up with the Aussies is nice, and the bumbling idiots chasing them sets us up for an amusing romp. First off the bat, I must say that this type of script, genre-wise at least, is not my thing, but it doesn't feel like a chore to read it. You're peppering the opening with stevie-isms which helps give it a familiarity; however, for a wider audience, the Beatles touches, for example, may fall flat, so it's something to bear in mind.
On a side note, you've made some funny comments on Aussies and how they're perceived. Yourself and my other Aussie friends have always been amusing, relaxed and chilled people, which is contrary to the popular depiction, but in Thailand recently I met one of the single most annoying people I have ever met. All she did was talk about Australia, and how it was so much better, etc. Dear God, so I think your minor Aussie-bashing was a good touch, but I still think you guys are cool
The one glaring thing that stuck out to me at this point was that you need to establish the characters a little better in the script to help us visualise the fact it's about a set of bumbling idiots. A subtle character description, or a finely-tuned description can help eliminate any nagging feeling that this would straddle another vibe. To SSers who are familiar with your work, this isn't really an issue, but with newcomers who have no precedent, it may be confusing what you're trying to achieve, IMHO. Blackwoffe referenced some classics with which this script shares thematic similarities, but I keep seeing 'Dumb and Dumber' with how you've set this up.
The problem with the Jawís quotes is that people that havenít seen it wonít get it. Well done for picking a popular film, but I wouldnít have quotes from the Jawís too important in the script.
I absolutely have to pipe up here and say that I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE JAWS QUOTES.
It's been a long time since I had seen Jaws and I don't remember lines in movies like many of you do, but it didn't matter one bit.
To me, the funny aspect was this guy mouthing lines that were totally unrelated to the topic, and I just had to laugh and laugh. And then somehow, the way Stevie had written it, I'd be immersed in one aspect of the script and then he'd always faithfully pull me back to something I'd forgotten.
I understand that everyone's sense of humor is different. Some people have a hard time even laughing at themselves and take everything too seriously. We're all different and that's the way it should be.
Just so you know though Stevie, I really did love the Jaws quotes and the script wouldn't be the same to me without them.
I think I'll always remember the time I spent one morning in December 2009, reading your script and laughing so hard and my whole day was changed because of your writing.
You Man, have talent. And don't let anyone ever tell you otherwise.
Hi Sandra! Thank for the kind words. Jaws is my favorite alltime film, so that's why I picked it for Pop to qoute. Look, I understand that most peole grew tired of it; it was just pure self indulgence on my part. But if you dug it, hey, I'm happy! The qoutes were meant to be thrown in randomly but a few ended up sort of fitting into what the current conversation was. I have to confess I snuck a few from IMDB - I can remember nearly all the dialogue from Jaws but had to check the exact lines on some instances.
My actual favorite quote not used is Quint's reply to Hooper's statement when they first see the shark:
Hooper - That's a 20 footer Quint - Twenty five...three tons of him.
If I can fit that into the re-write, I'll be doing very well! Cheers stevie
Let me congratulate you on getting this finished in seven weeks, especially at 112 pages - that is some achievement! After making my notes, I've read the feedback from everyones else, and I think I'm pretty much covering the same ground, but what the hell - I've written them, so I may as well put them up!
Firstly, this was a breeze to read and I found it very enjoyable and entertaining. You've got a great concept that allows for a lot of funny situations, but I don't think you made the most of it. I liked the over-the-top screwball nature of the second half of the script, and I think some more of this in the first half would have worked a treat.
Perhaps having Brent and Jason getting into a couple of scrapes or crazy situations before they meet up with Andrea & Tommy would accomplish this as well as helping to build their characters a little more early on.
With regards to the rest of the cast, I didn't have a problem with the number of them, but some of them did feel a little like throw-away characters - Jack, Rose & Henry being the main culprits.
Also, there didn't seem much point to Andrea's character at all, other than being Tommy's sister. I initially thought that there would be a love triangle between, her, Jason & Brent, but nothing developed.
Speaking of Tommy, I found him really annoying. I don't know what it was about him, but something really bugged me. However, saying that, most child characters in films tend to annoy me.
I liked the Slick character a lot, but I'd have liked him to be an even more over the top cartoon villain. Have him both more threatening, violence-wise, as well as being completely moronic - a psychotic imbecile.
Most of the characters speak in Aussie slang, using terms like "crims" & "arsehole" - this kept throwing me off every time it happened.
The Jaws quotes made me laugh (especially as it's one of my favourite films), but you totally overused them. The very last last quote did make me laugh out loud though. I wouldn't remove them completely, just use them sparingly & definitely keep the last one!
I've got a great list of suggestions from everyone, most unanimous onto who to cut from a re-write. Henry will definitely go, as will Tommy. Jack and Rose are 50/50 with most people but I like them! And I guess they are my creations to use at my whim!? I've been doing some brainstorming to make the start kickoff funnier, so then the first half will be up to speed with the second per wackiness. I want to make Jason crazier, Brent will stay the straight man, Andrea will be a tough bitch, Slick even more psycho but ultimately harmless. i intend to cut the Jaws quotes but make Pop quote from a range of well known movies. I can keep thebetter Jaws ones - and yes, the final line has to stay. Cheers again Steve, and well done on Dark Soul Vallley.
I wanted to read this when it first went up but I had a few others to read and then I got really busy. Iím not going to point out any spelling mistakes, as I think theyíve probably been pointed out by now, so Iíll concentrate on the story.
Maybe Iím being a bit picky but Slick believes Coreyís story without question and also doesnít doubt heís given him the correct RV number, not even a Ďyou better be telling the truthí. I will say that I liked the opening few pages though.
The three mobsters are pretty standard, Slick, the leader and intelligent one and Ray and Antonio are the stupid ones. This is no negative though, as from the first few scenes they come across well and funny to boot. I can see Slick getting pissed at Ray And Antonio as they have a conversation in the office while he waits for them to finish.
All Beatles CDís eh, I wonder why? Lol.
Taylor was driving alongside Brent and Jason so did he turn around because he was later driving alongside Slick and the others, but they are behind Brent and Jason?
Tommy sometimes comes across as being older than twelve years old, just some of his dialogue, for instance, asking for the bill in the restaurant. Pop and Henry are pretty funny, I love the farting and pop walking about naked lol. I did find Henryís talk of the undead a bit annoying for some reason but Pop quoting Jaws, I found hilarious.
I like how the chasing pack grows but not sure about Rose and Jack, they appear and then seem to bond with the group too easily. After the chase they get involved with money talk having been oblivious to everything earlier while they smooched the day away.
There seems to be a bit of change, the story starts as a bit of black comedy but for me as we near the hour mark it, it turns into more straight line comedy. The characters are believable but donít seem to care that a truck went over the canyon having just tried to ram them off the road. Even the police seem uninterested with the possible death of Slick. The chase scene was OK though.
Thereís some pretty funny scenes, Jimmyís story of the accident and the two men in the dingy spring to mind. Lol.
Iím wondering why Pop only ever speaks after Henry does?
I like the Beatles run-in but again it emphasises the comedy change. With three million in a stolen bag and knowingly being chased by lunatics, would they stop and pick up four strangers who are probably wearing suits? Their suspicions are commented on when they hit Vegas though.
Whatís with the Coyoteís?
Jack and Roseís story is OK but I think these characters could probably be cut as they donít really offer much but a few gags about Titanic. Also when Coop arrives at the dam and picks them and Slick up, the Paramedic says theyíve been floating a while but I didnít think that much time had passed, have I missed that?
How does Adam know the money in the briefcase is in connection with Bradshaw?
Whatís with the Matt Damon thing at the end?
This was entertaining and I read through it pretty quickly to be honest. I only noticed a few minor spelling mistakes so you did good on that. My main beef is with the change in comedy, which Iíve probably mention two or three times already. It kind of makes it hard to like because itís neither one nor the other. The opening is a dark comedy, with Slick roughing up a few people and then Brent and Jason share a few laughs but then it spirals toward the dreaded slapstick conclusion with one-liners and insane situations. Iíd prefer it to be one or the other really. Iím not saying I didnít enjoy it but it needs more focus. There are a lot of characters too, some appear for reasons only for comedy value, like Matt for instance. These characters work great for the slapstick part but donít fit with the opening. Iím really impressed that you did this in seven weeks and itís the outline for pretty good comedy...which one is up to you.
Check out my scripts...if you want to, no pressure.
Hi alffy. Thnaks for the read mate and the comments. Its interesting in that you mention stuff you liked in the script that other readers didn't really like , and vice versa. Also you make some good observations.
Not sure if you read any previous reviews but I've mentioned that originally this was a darker type comedy. The first 20 pages were full on swearing and Slick had a gun, etc. But Jeff read it for me and suggested I make it straight comedy as the mix of violence and funny lines didn't gel. So the rest of the script I wrote as straight comedy As i went alng, I deliberately threw in all sorts of shit, to enhance the wackniess. Thus the coyote, Matt Damon, Titanic, the crashes, pileups ,etc. I based it on the crazy road trip films and even harked back to say, Cannonball Run type movies.
Ok, a few answers: Taylor cruised up and down the highway, looking for luv... Adam was involved in the sting that traced the briefcase. I really dig how you liked the scene at the GC with Jimmy's story of the crash! It diidn't come out in the writing as I'd planeed and a few other ppeople found it a bit tedious. Cheers for that. A few months back I started reading Pub Lunch but sort of lost my way a bit. I'll check it again as it seems a good premise. Thnaks again mate. stevie
Hey Stevie. It's taken me a while to get to the other 7WC scripts so I figured I'd check out yours for starters.
Not sure how much I liked it. I didn't hate it or even dislike per se but it never quite struck a chord with me. The humor is fresh and creative but very quirky in a way I can't quite wrap my head around. I am a fan of quirky humor but I suppose I just couldn't figure out what you were going for. All the characters seemed completely different and had different styles of humor that mixed together in a strange way. I don't know. Maybe I'd have to read it again to catch on.
Some of the characters were interesting. The Aussies were all well and good for protagonists and I did get a kick out of the continuous cracks about "roos." Tommy was a fun character that I think you could've expanded more. Child characters are usually awful but this guy had spunk and I think you could take it further. Pop and Henry were a strange mix. They essentially had the same lines, just in their respective schticks. Occasionally Pop would come out of his Jaws phase but Henry never seemed to. I think he could benefit from snapping out of it from time to time. Even Silent Bob from Kevin Smith's flicks talks every once and a while. Jack and Rose were an interesting idea but I don't think you gave them enough of a chance to shine.
Of course, the Beatles had to make an appearance. Even if I weren't well aware of your love for the Fab Four, I might have been able to guess. They felt like the most genuine characters throughout. Very well done.
The antagonists, in which I'll also include Taylor, Steakhouse, etc. were probably the biggest issue I saw here. They were weak characters in the sense that they just couldn't rattle the protagonists' cage sufficiently. It actually seemed like the RV was smooth sailing for the most part. I think you got it backwards, dude. It was the bad guys who kept running into problems on their journey rather than the people we're supposed to be rooting for. They were rather incompetent and a poor match for the protagonists. I'd work on them having a bit more impact on the Aussies and co.
Also, not a huge issue here, but where's the Christmas, dude?
Anyway, a different sorta read for me. I suppose different is always good in some regard. Hope this helps.
Hi James! Thanks for the read, and the comments. Its interesting seeing how some people like ceratin characters in this and others not so much. At least i have a variety to pick from, which is good in some ways.
Yeah, I just sort of threw everything into this, an amalgamation of road movies and crazy chase films. So the humour is all mixed up too, depending on the current line. I thought i made the bad guys pretty clumsy and hopeless enough. I wanted Slick to be this hood who thought of himslef as bigtime but actually wasn't. So I made him keep getting smashed but he keeps on chasing them. when I do a re-write(?!) the start will show how inept the baddies are immediately, and the general wackiness will begin from there. Christmas? Yeah, this was originally set at xmas, with the boys driving to Vegas for xmas. But Jeff pointed out to me early on how cold and miserbale it would be in Arizona that time of year. So no one in their right mind would be camping! I didn't want the weather affecting the story so moved it to March. which is when I travelled this route myself. Cheers again James. I can check out 'Complete' if u like.
PS glad u liked the Beatle dudes! They were the easiest lines to write.
It did seem like the antagonists were intentionally incompetent which is fine to an extent. I enjoy villains who are really pathetic and hopeless. It's fun to watch them fail. My issue was how little affect they had on the protagonists. Even if each of their schemes actually had a positive affect, it would work. As of now, it seems like they can barely make their existence known. The problem lies in the lack of obstacles for the protagonist, not so much the abundance of obstacles for the antagonists.
No worries about Christmas. Unlike the OWC, these are features and it wouldn't be appropriate to knock a feature for not following the "rules." I was just curious.
Glad I could be of service. I could certainly use a look at "Complete." I submitted a rewrite last week. I can let you know when it's been posted.
Right. More delays that British trains. And passports. Sorry for that. What was that about the road to hell? Hmmm. Must bear that in mind.
As Freddie Mercury once declared before perfectly playing Crazy Little Thing Called Love live...
Quoted from Farouk(sic) Bulsara
This fucking guitar never plays the chords that I want it to play.
I digress. Oh Freddie. We miss you. Come back! We have to put with Cowell, Westlife, Arsezone, The Back Door Boys. RnB that has absolutely nothing to do with rhythm and blues. Women who call themselves divas who should not be singing outside of their own bathrooms. Fred! Come back. I'm begging you. And bring Jonathon Ross back with you. And Jimi! and don't forget Janis. Good lad.
"hooks through a drive-in burger joint"
Liked that line. It's very early on too.
Seven weeks to right a full length screenplay. No small task. Of course for the fella with the ideas and discipline and time it wouldn't be a huge task. Whether it's any good or not is of course a different matter.
I've had a read thru. And it's pretty good. Not bad at all. All things considered.
My first impression is that it starts off a lot better than it finishes. This is a common problem. Not least with me own gear.
"Yes. I can smell him."
Is a big statement on the first page. We know where we're going now. Everybody rants on about the first ten pages. But if the very first one ain't perfect then it's going in the bin. In some offices.
Glad to report yours is very good. So. Confidence installed. We shall continue...
Dialogue's a bit erm, wordy. Do these guys actually say all that? Would they? How's that look?
I'm quite fond of... Many are. But I'd be using that in a certain way.
Now. I'm no script doctor. Piss of piecely tell you what's wrong with it. But the cure and prognosis is what you're really after.
And. Popular word. Maybe too much.
Do people stand absolutely still when they speak?
Do blocks of anything look as interesting as a varied sparsely populated page.
Now. All this is that tech gumff. And Denny Laine and Snyder god rest him spout plenty of good stuff on all that.
Story. Small word. Always a big bleeding problem. Leaky too. How do you patch the fecker up?
The other Snyder has some idea. Fincher knows. Kubrick was certain. Scorcese's fairly sure. Spielberg manages sometimes. When he's stopped being bloody soppy. Or plain weird. Or nicking.
I can tell you puta lotta time in here S. And that shows.
So. I'll post again soon with thoughts on the actual story rather than its delivery. I do know this though...
Subtext. It exists as much as characters and action lines do. Whether we like it or not. John Paul knew all about it. They cracked jokes as quick as lightning....
Quoted from B clip
BBC: Is Ringo the best drummer in the world? J: He's not even the best drummer in the Beatles
I'm coming off of two weeks on the road and was swamped in the evenings so I am only half way through with your script. I have no more out of towners left on the books for this year so I can get into this more in depth now.
I have one question though. Which script is posted on page one of the thread? The old or new one. If it is the old one, where is the re-write?
I think I will just start over with your script. That will tell me after a few pages which one it is.
I will get back to you in a couple of days with my thoughts.
Take care man.
By the way, what I have read so far is top shelf Stevie. It reads very good.
Steve I finished this one about 3 days ago "finally" and will definitely give you some thoughts and likes and dislikes late tonight or tomorrow. I'm glad this was bumped up on the portal page because it put priority back into perspective.
I'm strapped for time right now, so don't think I forgot about ya.
P.S. Then again, all I did here yesterday was pretty underwhelming and unproductive. Time would've been much better spent giving you some honest feedback.