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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Comedy Scripts  ›  Pursuit Moderators: bert
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Don
Posted: January 7th, 2011, 2:30am Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Pursuit by Boris Jacobson - Comedy - Two D&D nerds go on the run with stolen mob cash. 102 pages - pdf, format


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Trojan
Posted: January 7th, 2011, 11:27am Report to Moderator
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Sorry, but I closed this after the first page. You reference the camera about a dozen times in that opening page, not a good way to start. Your job as the writer is simply to tell the story, let the director decide what the camera will be doing.

I'd suggest reading some scripts on here to learn proper formatting (hint: your title page gets things off to an ominous start) and then have a go at rewriting this without all the techical jargon.

Cheers,
Tim.
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TattooGigolo
Posted: January 15th, 2011, 3:57pm Report to Moderator
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I have to agree with Tim. Numerous extraneous camera directions makes for a tedious read. It also keeps reminding the reader that this is a movie. We want to get immersed in the story, but that is difficult if we are continuously pulled out of the story to be told how the camera is moving. There are tricks to writing a scene so the most logical approach to filming it matches up with your vision/words.

I'm a fan of D&D and was looking forward to this screenplay. I'd love to check it out once the camera direction has been omitted.

Best,
Jason


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cloroxmartini
Posted: January 15th, 2011, 5:15pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Trojan
Sorry, but I closed this after the first page. You reference the camera about a dozen times in that opening page, not a good way to start. Your job as the writer is simply to tell the story, let the director decide what the camera will be doing.

I'd suggest reading some scripts on here to learn proper formatting (hint: your title page gets things off to an ominous start) and then have a go at rewriting this without all the techical jargon.

Cheers,
Tim.


I think you might be missing out...

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cloroxmartini
Posted: January 15th, 2011, 7:01pm Report to Moderator
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Quick read.

Except for some major plot points, I think the character actions come off as natural. Rob not finding toilet paper and
having to go look for it to set up the next plot point. Rob kicking getting mad at himself after telling Kasey he loves
her, then kicking a car that sets off an alarm and he runs away. It's naturally humorous stuff.

I didn't get Jeremy telling Rob about the money. I'd think Jeremy would just tell Rob to stay out of his money and it's
nobodies business, get it, and hands Rob $500.

I don't think Kasey and Rob would turn so non-chalante at a dead body, laughing, holding hands. Didn't seem real.

I like the set ups. The body being dumped off the bridge only to be seen by Rob and Kasey. Kasey putting the money in the
trunk after Jeremy had thrown the hand in there after he was startled by Kasey showing up in the cab. The come off as
unforced natural reactions that carry the story forward. Good stuff that you carry all the way through.

I would set up and support Rob and Kasey's first conversation about keeping the money. What I mean is have them do more
during their D&D stuff. Talk about the Orcan's doing something else during the game so we tie it back better. It's another
natural thing for these two to do and I buy it but I could buy it better with even a few lines of set up earlier on.

I don't get why the cop said fuck it.

The scene with (garage) Mike is funny.

The gun store scene is funny.

You don't move out of the way just in time AFTER a gun is fired.

Kasey getting phones with a fake name with all those pay as you go phones? That didn't ring true.

The ending was good. Raising the stakes. But the wrap up was flat, being in prison, that somehow seemed like less, like the final flourish wasn't there. And how did Kasey get off and Rob didn't?

I liked it a lot but wasn't blown away. It needs some punch. I like the gags and jokes. They are told well and have a good punchline right at the end of the scene and you cut away to the next thing, not wasting time.

Good character count and sub plots. The FBI. Jeremy and the mob. Kasey and Rob's love story.

Solid dialogue with good humor.

A bit of a stock story, but I think you had enough good stuff in there to keep it better than average.

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
cloroxmartini  -  January 15th, 2011, 9:33pm
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bojacobson
Posted: January 16th, 2011, 10:36pm Report to Moderator
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CloroxMartini,

  thanks so much for reading! I noted everything you said and will keep it all in mind for the next rewrite. I'm also working on incorporating more D&D references and elements into the entire thing. I can't wait to read a script of yours and return the favor

As for TattooGigolo and Trojan,
      The camera directions don't really extend past the first scene, but I understand your sentiment. I would encourage you to read on (and I will read your scripts as well). The reason those camera directions are in there was because I really envisioned that scene a particular way...if you have any suggestions on how to get that across without using specific instructions like that, I'm all for hearing them

Thanks all!
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cloroxmartini
Posted: January 17th, 2011, 12:06am Report to Moderator
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Don't incorporate too much D&D, only enough to support what comes later. You may change all that to WoW to be more relevant.
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_ghostwriters
Posted: January 17th, 2011, 1:26am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from bojacobson
The camera directions don't really extend past the first scene, but I understand your sentiment.  The reason those camera directions are in there was because I really envisioned that scene a particular way...if you have any suggestions on how to get that across without using specific instructions like that, I'm all for hearing them


I'm sure we all have a certain vision when we sit down to write our scripts.  Especially me, but there's one difference... I make sure they seem like they (the rules) aren't broken.

Here's some advice...

There's a better way to get it across.  Get more creative.  When you go back and do your re-writes you'll be amazed at what else you can come up with.

Of course this will help in your future endeavors...

Avoid the use of camera directions to describe shots in a spec script. Once your script becomes a film in production, camera angles and shots will become the responsibility of the director and the director of photography.  (I'm sure you know this)

As a screenwriter, your responsibility is to craft words that trigger the desired imagery so those individual "shots" move naturally through the reader's mind.

When writing a script, screenwriters have a very vivid mental picture of the images they are trying to convey. Most of us think in film, meaning we imagine our story unfolding as a series of images or visual scenes. The best way for a writer to direct the script is to format the description in such a way the shots appear to separate themselves. This is called the White Space technique. With the correct use of this technique, you can pace your script and divide each image as if it were its own shot.

As you write your script, imagine where you would change the camera angle or shot. At that point, begin a new paragraph of description. Keep your paragraphs shorter for a rapidly paced scene and slightly longer (but still only a few sentences!) to maintain a slower paced scene.

Side note; I'd re-do your title page,  it screams... "Your soul will be damned to eternal amateur damnation."   
  
Good Luck

Ghostwriter


"When I dive... I go deep, only to surface the hub when necessary."


Revision History (4 edits; 1 reasons shown)
_ghostwriters  -  January 17th, 2011, 4:08am
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bojacobson
Posted: January 17th, 2011, 5:02am Report to Moderator
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Ghostwriter,

   Thanks for the input. For everyone's information, I do have an "industry standard" title-page, but for the purposes of submitting my scripts to this site, I've removed all information I don't want everyone knowing, and left just the title and my name.
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SarahMiller42
Posted: January 29th, 2011, 6:11am Report to Moderator
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First off I'd remove the (working title) from the title page. All titles are subject change up to the moment of release.

Second start with FADE IN: at the top left of the script. Also it took me a moment to figure out that C.U meant close up. (I'm sure it is a well abrieviation know but it is also putting a shot in and that should be left to the director.)

Besides the thing with the camera moves being unneeded, you also have the passive voice verb instead of the active. This is using the words "is" and "are" with "-ing" verbs. "The players, now dressed normally, are walking up a flight of stairs single file." could be rewritten as "Now dressed normally, the player walk up a flight of stairs single file." The second is both shorter and more active.

Page 4 "and carrying duffle bags filled with their costume." Costume should agree with the bags and their and therefore be costumes.

Also all the CUT TOs aren't always needed. Those get put in shooting scripts. At least so I've read that this the practice these days.

You also don't need the scene numbers. Those are another mark of a shooting script not a writer's draft.

On page 18, if they were at Kasey's house why are she and Jeremy getting into a car to go anywhere? Aren't they already home?


Ok I've gotten to the bottom of page 21 and will finish later.

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