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One thing I didn’t like about Rene’s character is that Rene is very unlikable. I think that, even though Rene is supposed to be an antagonist, you can make her unlikable in a sense that she is likable. I feel that Rene didn’t really want to fight for Travis’ and her marriage in the first place. Please take this review as a grain of salt and not as a negative review. I think that you made Rene this way because of the natural of her personality. I think that she can do everything as she could to fight for her marriage, and then later on in the story she should give up. Then that’s where Travis looks for answers through his Clone Wife.
I also think that Clone Wife could be used to start life over again with Rene. Maybe Travis could find the answers from Clone Wife, and, at the end, find a way to negotiate with Clone Wife before Rene comes home from vacation. Other than this, I think everything else is fine.
So, what did I think of it...? I really liked it, and can see why others have as well
The concept of the script was great. And not only was it great, but it is very sellable (which explains why you've got producers interested!).
The script was also a very fast, easy read. This was because your writing throughout was superb. I loved your descriptions. They were brilliant.
Now, whilst I did really enjoy the read, I did have one or two issues with it. My major issue was that I was never really rooting for Travis and Renee to get back together; if anything, I was rooting for him to actually stay with Clone Wife! I think the reason for this was that you never really showed us Travis and Renee before their relationship is completely over. OK, you do throw in a few flashbacks throughout, but I'd like the screenplay to start with them on the rocks, but that spark, that something still there between them. That way, I feel that it would actually give us a reason for rooting for them to get back together. I also think it would make Renee's decision to go back to Travis more believable. Because as it stands, I was a bit confused as to what was motivating her to travel halfway across the world to go back to him.
Another potential issue I had, this time with the concept, was wouldn't Clone Wife have realised everyone was nine years older? I know she did say something about Travis' wrinkles, but maybe have her say something similar to some of the other characters?
Below are a few notes I made whilst reading:
Page 3- “Renee’s not talking about accessories.” Is this necessary?
Page 10- Really decent use of the story to weave in back-story, without making it seem forced or unnatural.
Page 12- Not really sure if the (weeks later) in the slug is necessary, as in the scene after, you tell us that Travis hasn’t shaved in weeks?
Page 13- Not really sure what the relevance of this scene is: “A bird lands on the corner pocket of the pool table”?
Page 21- Stig: “I mean, he’s been working a hard on.” I lol-ed
Page 24- I personally thought the nightmare scene lasted a little too long, and it seemed
Page 40- I believe this slug needs a time? “INT. SKY ZONE TRAMPOLINE PARK”
Page 62- Something about this line reads a bit awkward: “Astrid, I know the difference between real WIFE and my work.”
Page 64- Travis is coming across quite obnoxious and unlikeable here. Especially with the "boo-ya!"
Page 70- Renee: “Take me home now.” I think this line would read better with a full stop before “now”.
Page 97- I’m not sure Guy would have admitted to sabotage straight away?
Page 101- I’m not really sure what this line means: “Clone Wife takes a tall drink of Mr. Charming.” Is it meant to read “takes a drink OFF”?
Page 103- “A lonely volunteer sits at a booth full of Guy’s book.” Should be “books”?
But yeah, as I said at the start, I really enjoyed this.
Best of luck with everything, you deserve all the positive attention you have received with this.
Sent through my coverage on "Clone Wife" to Mr. Shapiro a while back. Thought you might want to know what I said in my comments. I didn't have many negative to say. All in all, a brilliant script. Hope all goes well for you.
Here is what I wrote:
“Clone Wife” is an original tale that beautifully portrays the power of true love overcoming apparent impossible odds. With brilliant one-liners and hilariously funny character traits, the screenplay is an opportunity one should not miss reviewing. With the main character, Travis battling against the possibility of losing the love of his life twice, the dramatic stakes are enough to keep audiences of all ages enthralled around the world. While a little slow in places, the story builds on the tension tremendously, delivering some comical scenes with the return of Renee. There is a good presence of sub-plots that make sense, with Stig’s backstory involving him being bullied as a teenager and some minor characters that entertain to the best of their ability. The story works incredibly well within the genre, with the key features of Romantic Quality still there. This couple is separated by odds that seem to be impossible to overcome, yet they still manage to do so. A truly heart-warming story with a decent ending, likely to make an audience smile.
The characters in “Clone Wife” are brilliantly developed, with all characters completing some sort of arc. There is a lesson to be learned from each character, therefore creating an element for every audience member to take from the story. For example, Travis realizes that with a little determination, true love can be rediscovered where it was once lost. On the other end of that spectrum, Clone Wife discovers that love isn’t always a two-way street and sometimes we may have to make sacrifices in order to discover our own true love. While each characters have their individual themes to portray, there are other traits which make them admirable as well. In general, the characters are typically quite lively and compelling, with different quirks that set them apart. Stig, for example has his eye-twitch and Travis is infatuated with his work to a point where an audience would have to admire him. Even Travis’ robots have unique characters, bound to amuse audiences. Eli is a childish robots with some amusing and sometimes hilarious hand gestures to portray his thoughts, while Emma is a more sophisticated robot, well beyond her “years” in terms of maturity and wisdom. Despite their very different personalities, these robots are a characterization masterpiece, showing what caring for someone is truly about.
Despite being a comedy, the screenplay isn’t too heavily reliant on dialogue, which is a common fear among many film directors. Brett Martin has found a nice balance between dialogue and action, forcing both these elements to compliment each other, as opposed to conflicting features. Additionally, each character sounds real and incredibly believable an incredibly good thing for comedy, as often punch-lines come across as a little cheesy. With this screenplays complimentary contrast between dialogue and action and believable character dialogue quirks, this particular aspect in screenwriting has been executed to perfection.
In terms of structure and pacing, all looks well with “Clone Wife”. Act 1 gets right into the thick of things, quickly establishing Renee’s irritation with her husband’s enthusiasm. The inciting incident in act 1 (Renee leaving) is brought in at the perfect time, rolling into the second act in a nice fluid motion. Act 2, however, could roll along a little faster with some redundant detail included. Just after Travis finds out that Renee is coming back to town, we spend more time watching the relationship between Clone Wife and Travis develop. This is essentially something already witnessed in “Clone Wife” therefore rendering this particular action sequence a little redundant and unnecessary. This, however, is the only glitch in Act 2, with the rest of the story development progressing well. Act 3 runs through without any glitches, with a nice, clear resolution to a well thought-through story.
“Clone Wife” should be considered as a potential filming product when taking the criteria provided by the Director into account. The film is a clear depiction of real, relatable characters in a slightly surreal situation. With Travis’ marriage on the line, he is essentially in an incredibly vulnerable position, with his life as he knows it on the line. The main conflict is played out through his relationship with his wife, challenging his priorities in life and whether he could really live a healthy life without the existence of his partner. With this romantic component in the story, the stakes are incredibly high and easy to relate to. After all, what sane audience would want to lose the love of their life over a simple thing such as work? CONSIDER FOR PRODUCTION.
Hey Brett, seems I’m the only person round here that hasn’t read this so...
As you’ve had a ton of good reviews I thought I’d simply read this through and give my two bob thoughts.
The opening experiment was very descriptive and at times a little confusing which slowed my pace. Actually this continues and there was a description of Montana Tony’s that had me completely baffled...I didn’t make a note of it but it was something about a cocaine cowboy or something, went right over my head it did lol.
There’s also a lot of character traits and background given out in the description; not sure where I stand on this really?
I enjoyed the scene that told us of their back story, played put out through the old photos. Pretty clever that.
The burrito scene had me chuckling.
So far I’m 20 odd pages in and I have laughed at numerous scenarios. I’m pretty impressed so far and hope it continues in this vain.
So the main storyline kicks in just after the 20 minute mark and kicks in with a great dream/nightmare scene.
I did notice that clone wife sits on Travis’ bed but we’re only told she’s naked when she leaves.
I had to write this bit down as I read it. ‘Clone wife kisses Travis all the way down to his...ding dong. The door bell rings.’ I chuckled out loud at this but then realised the gag would be watered down a bit on screen.
I had to re-read the CREAMERY slug, lol
There are some nice touches with Clone Wife and Renee copying their actions.
Brett, I’m not sure you’ll have heard of this show but when I read over the bookshop scene with Guy I couldn’t help but imagine a scene from an episode of ‘Black Books’. A travel writer visits the shop for a talk and the customers act like giddy school children in his presence.
There’s a nice switch of mood at about the hour mark when Travis realises how he and Renee have drifted over the last 10 years and failed to live up to the dreams they both had.
I did wonder why Officer Pitt waited around in the cul-de-sac long enough to hear the explosion? Or did he return, I was a bit confused by the timeline here? I did think Pitt was funny though.
I enjoyed how Travis became like a ‘mad scientist’ character toward the end.
The final 15/20 minutes concluded everything nicely. One thing that came to me though was, everyone tried desperately to hid modern things from Clone Wife so she wouldn’t realise what year it was and she thought she was living the present but would she not think that everyone suddenly looked older than they did yesterday?
I’ve kept it short, like I said, as everyone seems to have read this already and you’ve plenty of good feedback so I’ll just say that I thought this was excellent. I breezed through it in no time and found it very entertaining from start to finish. Also a few minor characters came and went but injected good humour, Wade and Pitt spring to mind. Excellent work, Brett.
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