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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Comedy Scripts  ›  In Search of Hysterical Jesus Moderators: bert
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  Author    In Search of Hysterical Jesus  (currently 3927 views)
Don
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 1:36pm Report to Moderator
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In Search of Hysterical Jesus by David Lambertson - Comedy - When a famous atheist comedian literally dies on stage, he makes a bargain with God to avoid damnation - make the bible funny. 108 pages - pdf format

CW: Would not recommend for anyone who might be offended by religious related humor.

Writer interested in feedback on this work



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Revision History (4 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Don  -  April 18th, 2020, 11:34am
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Matthew Taylor
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 2:31pm Report to Moderator
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Hi David

I saw your thread about this a few days ago, so when this popped up I started giving it a read at work.

Unfortunately I have to stop at page 7 - I say unfortunately, because I am bloody loving it so far lol I only have to stop because my shift has actually finished and I have to drive home.

I can't wait to read more - I have nothing useful to add at the moment, I'm really liking the characterisations, the dialogue - so far I'm liking it all.

Regards

Matt


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eldave1
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Hi David

I saw your thread about this a few days ago, so when this popped up I started giving it a read at work.

Unfortunately I have to stop at page 7 - I say unfortunately, because I am bloody loving it so far lol I only have to stop because my shift has actually finished and I have to drive home.

I can't wait to read more - I have nothing useful to add at the moment, I'm really liking the characterisations, the dialogue - so far I'm liking it all.

Regards

Matt


Thanks,  Matt. Appreciate it.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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MarkItZero
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 5:50pm Report to Moderator
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Dave, that was awesome. I think your writing went to a whole other level on this one. And before it was page finalist level so I don't even know what it's at now. So many great moves... Sharon's new boyfriend's occupation... the familiar faces at the wedding...

I should note I am beyond ignorant about any religious stuff or really most basic history. None of which interfered with my enjoyment of the script. In case you were wondering how it reads for someone who's not religious at all.

I hope I have time to do notes before you send this in to contests. Not that it needs it, but hopefully I can give some feedback in the next couple weeks or so.


That rug really tied the room together.
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eldave1
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 6:29pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks, mate. Much appreciated


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Zack
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 6:36pm Report to Moderator
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Comedy usually isn't my thing, but the logline definitely peaked my interest. I'll download it and read it at work whenever the boss isn't watching.

Zack
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eldave1
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 6:42pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Zack
Comedy usually isn't my thing, but the logline definitely peaked my interest. I'll download it and read it at work whenever the boss isn't watching.

Zack


Thanks


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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HyperMatt
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 8:56pm Report to Moderator
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Would you say this is along the same lines as ‘The Life of Brian’ Dave?


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Mr.Ripley
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Will definitely read this. What’s CW stand for?

Gabe
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eldave1
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Quoted from HyperMatt
Would you say this is along the same lines as ‘The Life of Brian’ Dave?


A little


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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eldave1
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 9:08pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Mr.Ripley
Will definitely read this. What’s CW stand for?

Gabe


CW?


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Mr.Ripley
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CW: Would not recommend for anyone who might be offended by religious related humor.
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eldave1
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 9:25pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from eldave1


CW?


Don't know what it stands for. It is my note when I posted


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from eldave1


CW?


Don't know what it stands for. It is my note when I posted


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Mr.Ripley
Posted: January 7th, 2019, 9:30pm Report to Moderator
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No problem then. Read 10 pgs. Will continue to read further.
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LC
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CW: cautionary warning?

Pages are fairly flying by, Dave. Effortless writing. Loved the bit with the 'round up'.

The worst part is that
she left me for the dude next
store.


Typo? Next door?

Will post more after I've read the lot.
Gotta say I'm not a fan of the title so far...



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eldave1
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Quoted from LC
CW: cautionary warning?

Pages are fairly flying by, Dave. Effortless writing. Loved the bit with the 'round up'.

The worst part is that
she left me for the dude next
store.


Typo? Next door?

Will post more after I've read the lot.
Gotta say I'm not a fan of the title so far...



Ah- that makes sense for "CW." I typed the note as I did not want anyone to get inadvertently offended - just not the CW.  You are a sleuth!

Thanks for the typo catch - s/b door.

Will have to see if you change you mind on the title.......


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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MStandage
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I read this and really enjoyed it. Great work!

Michael
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eldave1
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Quoted from MStandage
I read this and really enjoyed it. Great work!

Michael


Thanks. Michael


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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MichaelYu
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Dave,

Just read the first five pages because I have something to take care of. The first five pages were up to standard especially the description of Barry and Sharon and the conflict between the two.

Michael
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Warren
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Just saw this, Dave.

Will read the lot tomorrow. Just going to finish off Paul's scripts and I'll drive straight it.

Can't wait.


To View All My Scripts Please Use The Link Below

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MarkRenshaw
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Well done on writing this feature, Dave. It's always an achievement to get FADE OUT done on such a massive effort. Below are the notes I typed as I was reading so you know exactly what my frame of mind was at each page.



Page 2 - parentheticals (at Booker) there's no one else in the room and Barry is interacting with the dog, I don't think the parentheticals are needed. There's a lot of parentheticals throughout. Personal preference I know, I avoid them like the plague unless absolutely necessary simply because I know actors hate them. This shouldn't affect any screenwriting competition though.

First few pages and I really dislike Barry. Is that intentional? I've no idea why he's being such an ass. Probably these guys deserve it but I don't know why. Page 10, oh, he loves her? Weird.

If I were giving this script an evaluation and reached page 10, I'm 50/50 if I would carry on. It's well written, but 10 minutes of Barry being a dick and flaunting the fact that the law can't touch him may not be enough for me to want to continue. But I will! Also, I do realise this kind of setup can work perfectly. Bill Murray in Scrooged for example. The thing with that example is everyone expects Scrooge to be nasty.

Page 12 - the dog bowls - This gag, the same one was used in season 1 of the Good Place. Not suggesting you copied it, just that The Good Place is going to be an obvious comparison due to the source material.

Barry's death scene feels like it's missing something. I'm not even sure what, maybe it's rushed? Dunno, but it's missing something. It feels wrong.

You can streamline some of the action. For example, page 19 - "Barry reaches in his pocket, retrieves the pack of smokes and
hands them to Saint Peter." It reads like giving instructions to an actor robot fashion. Considering the action and dialogue above this, something as simple as "He hands them over." would suffice.

I'm enjoying the banter with St Peter. The DMV and IRS lol. I'm just wondering, why Barry is getting personal attention from Peter? Or does everyone entering heaven get their own personal Peter? I see all the workstations are manned by a Peter, so maybe everyone has a Peter with them like a virtual app? It makes the scene so expensive it probably blows most budgets but if you are gonna aim high, aim higher!

"As soon as he was Abel" - lmao.

The chat with God is a little cliche. I'd suggest giving god form, something ridiculous. Like a turnip. Well, maybe not a turnip but something we don't expect, something that Barry can't take seriously. At the moment it makes zero sense why Barry is being given any special treatment (which maybe is the point) but it would help if we could see that there is something wrong and Barry is maybe in a position to help. What if God had forgotten how to do humour or never had that capability and the only reason he keeps humans around is because they make him laugh but he's incapable of humour, he can just mimic what humans do. It puzzles him and Barry is the conduit of God's attempts to solve the mystery.  Something like that anyway.

The Three Stooges is a funny scene. You could have a lot of fun reimagining bible scenes. Issac Asimov once had this idea to re-write the bible as a sci-fi. He only managed to re-write Genesis before giving up on the project but that's well worth a read if you can find it.

Barry & Jesus. The scene had its moments, particularly when they came across the sentries, but I did find myself drifting quite often with their chatter. It needs more umph, more action, more comedy that isn't relying on Barry's attempts at humour or Jesus misunderstanding him.

At this point, I still don't root for your protagonist. I don't particularly care if he ends up in the bad place and still don't understand why God is putting so much effort into redeeming him. I agree with all of Peter's comments about Barry.

I got to page 66 and my lunch break ran out but I've started skimming and drifting. I don't think any more notes from me will be useful. I'm going to call it there and offer the above in the hope that they are useful and helpful. Comedy is very subjective, so take my comments or leave them - they are offered freely.  


For more of my scripts, stories, produced movies and the ocassional blog, check out my new website. CLICK

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
MarkRenshaw  -  January 8th, 2019, 10:17am
typos; bible study
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StevenClark
Posted: January 8th, 2019, 10:25am Report to Moderator
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i remember a movie/documentary by that name many many years ago—In Search Of Historical Jesus. Is this a riff on that?


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Mr.Ripley
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Loving this.

On pg 20, how about having different angels manning the stations?  It if you do stick with saint peter, wouldn’t Barry make a joke about seeing all the saint peters?

Interested in how you describe every scene in heaven without int/ext. Not having a problem with it but, surprisingly works for me lol. So simple.

Pg 33. I think the exchange between god and Barry can be shortened. For instance, Barry: can I say beam me up Scotty. God: how about phasers on stun? Crash of lightening followed by branch breaking. Barry: point taken.

So finished it.

I would find it interesting if satan got involved but that will go against the main story which was Barry starting a new life without Sharon.

Good luck with this.
Gabe

Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Mr.Ripley  -  January 8th, 2019, 1:31pm
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khamanna
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Hi, Dave.

Reading this, on p20 now.
The first impression is - yes I'm loving it. I do have a gripe--

I think it's the fact that he has to go and perform. I didn't get why. I know the guy with the Rolex (his name is hard to remember) put a bail down, but still.

I also don't see the proper resistance to go - so this "going to perform" is out of blue for me. It's not fully connected and I wish it was.

And I continue with the read.

By the way, do you watch The Marvelous Mrs. Maizel? Maybe you should. It's about a female comedian. Something tells me you'll like it.
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eldave1
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Quoted from MStandage
I read this and really enjoyed it. Great work!

Michael


Thanks. Michael - glad you liked it.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from Warren
Just saw this, Dave.

Will read the lot tomorrow. Just going to finish off Paul's scripts and I'll drive straight it.

Can't wait.


Thanks, mate.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from StevenClark
i remember a movie/documentary by that name many many years ago—In Search Of Historical Jesus. Is this a riff on that?


Yes - that is the source of the title


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from Mr.Ripley
Loving this.

On pg 20, how about having different angels manning the stations?  It if you do stick with saint peter, wouldn’t Barry make a joke about seeing all the saint peters?

Interested in how you describe every scene in heaven without int/ext. Not having a problem with it but, surprisingly works for me lol. So simple.

Pg 33. I think the exchange between god and Barry can be shortened. For instance, Barry: can I say beam me up Scotty. God: how about phasers on stun? Crash of lightening followed by branch breaking. Barry: point taken.

So finished it.

I would find it interesting if satan got involved but that will go against the main story which was Barry starting a new life without Sharon.

Good luck with this.
Gabe


Thanks for reading, Gabe:

Thought about the angels - somehow multiple Saint Peters just stuck me as funnier.

On the INT/EXT - yeah, omitted them as I didn't think they made sense in terms or "Heaven" - glad it didn't cause any hiccups for you.

Like your suggestions for p. 33. Thanks

Re: Satan. Maybe for the sequel


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from khamanna
Hi, Dave.

Reading this, on p20 now.
The first impression is - yes I'm loving it. I do have a gripe--

I think it's the fact that he has to go and perform. I didn't get why. I know the guy with the Rolex (his name is hard to remember) put a bail down, but still.

I also don't see the proper resistance to go - so this "going to perform" is out of blue for me. It's not fully connected and I wish it was.

And I continue with the read.

By the way, do you watch The Marvelous Mrs. Maizel? Maybe you should. It's about a female comedian. Something tells me you'll like it.


Hey, Khamanna - much thanks for reading.  He has to perform because he's a stand-up comedian and he's shooting an HBO special that night.

I do like Mrs. Maizel


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
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Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Well done on writing this feature, Dave. It's always an achievement to get FADE OUT done on such a massive effort. Below are the notes I typed as I was reading so you know exactly what my frame of mind was at each page.


Thanks so much for reading, Mark.


Quoted Text
Page 2 - parentheticals (at Booker) there's no one else in the room and Barry is interacting with the dog, I don't think the parentheticals are needed. There's a lot of parentheticals throughout. Personal preference I know, I avoid them like the plague unless absolutely necessary simply because I know actors hate them. This shouldn't affect any screenwriting competition though.


I don't mind parentheticals and try to limit them to physical movements. Here, I wasn't sure if the reader would be confused without it - i.e., they may think he's talking to himself.


Quoted Text
First few pages and I really dislike Barry. Is that intentional? I've no idea why he's being such an ass. Probably these guys deserve it but I don't know why. Page 10, oh, he loves her? Weird.


Barry is supposed to be an ass.  


Quoted Text
If I were giving this script an evaluation and reached page 10, I'm 50/50 if I would carry on. It's well written, but 10 minutes of Barry being a dick and flaunting the fact that the law can't touch him may not be enough for me to want to continue. But I will! Also, I do realise this kind of setup can work perfectly. Bill Murray in Scrooged for example. The thing with that example is everyone expects Scrooge to be nasty.


Don't know what to say. He is supposed to be unlikable - he's literally going to hell. Scrooge is a good example. Melvin in "As Good As it Gets" is another. I think the story doesn't work if he is likeable.


Quoted Text
Page 12 - the dog bowls - This gag, the same one was used in season 1 of the Good Place. Not suggesting you copied it, just that The Good Place is going to be an obvious comparison due to the source material.


I have never seen this show and this came out of my head - but if the scene is similar to mine, that is a real concern. I'll check it out. Much thanks for pointing it out.


Quoted Text
Barry's death scene feels like it's missing something. I'm not even sure what, maybe it's rushed? Dunno, but it's missing something. It feels wrong.


Will take a look at it.


Quoted Text
You can streamline some of the action. For example, page 19 - "Barry reaches in his pocket, retrieves the pack of smokes and hands them to Saint Peter." It reads like giving instructions to an actor robot fashion. Considering the action and dialogue above this, something as simple as "He hands them over." would suffice.


Will look at this.


Quoted Text
I'm enjoying the banter with St Peter. The DMV and IRS lol. I'm just wondering, why Barry is getting personal attention from Peter? Or does everyone entering heaven get their own personal Peter? I see all the workstations are manned by a Peter, so maybe everyone has a Peter with them like a virtual app? It makes the scene so expensive it probably blows most budgets but if you are gonna aim high, aim higher!


It's a dream - sort of - so I didn't really worry about routine logistical issues - pretty much thought I could go anywhere I want.


Quoted Text
The chat with God is a little cliche. I'd suggest giving god form, something ridiculous. Like a turnip. Well, maybe not a turnip but something we don't expect, something that Barry can't take seriously. At the moment it makes zero sense why Barry is being given any special treatment (which maybe is the point) but it would help if we could see that there is something wrong and Barry is maybe in a position to help. What if God had forgotten how to do humour or never had that capability and the only reason he keeps humans around is because they make him laugh but he's incapable of humour, he can just mimic what humans do. It puzzles him and Barry is the conduit of God's attempts to solve the mystery.  Something like that anyway.


In terms of God's form - an interesting area of debate. I had  several ideas on what he would look like and ultimately abandoned them all and went with just a voice instead. I ultimately found it more compelling for the reader to insert any image that suits them.


Quoted Text
The Three Stooges is a funny scene. You could have a lot of fun reimagining bible scenes. Issac Asimov once had this idea to re-write the bible as a sci-fi. He only managed to re-write Genesis before giving up on the project but that's well worth a read if you can find it.


Thanks - I'll look for the Asimov thing - interesting.


Quoted Text
Barry & Jesus. The scene had its moments, particularly when they came across the sentries, but I did find myself drifting quite often with their chatter. It needs more umph, more action, more comedy that isn't relying on Barry's attempts at humour or Jesus misunderstanding him.


Don't agree here - but if people don't find this funny - then - yeah, I've probably failed.


Quoted Text
At this point, I still don't root for your protagonist. I don't particularly care if he ends up in the bad place and still don't understand why God is putting so much effort into redeeming him. I agree with all of Peter's comments about Barry.


Don't know what to say - he is suppose to be unlikable.


Quoted Text
I got to page 66 and my lunch break ran out but I've started skimming and drifting. I don't think any more notes from me will be useful. I'm going to call it there and offer the above in the hope that they are useful and helpful. Comedy is very subjective, so take my comments or leave them - they are offered freely.  


Thanks so much for the notes and the efforts. I truly appreciate them. I knew when I did this, it would have a wide range of reactions and am expecting some folks to hate it. It is important that I get all POVs on this. I value yours.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Warren
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Back to jump into this. Notes as I read. I'm hoping to do it in one sitting.

SPOILERS

Barry quite often comes off pretty stupid, which is a little hard to believe because he can't be a complete idiot if he has managed to forge a successful comedian career, one where he has a HBO gig.


Quoted Text
BARRY
Sharon...?
Peter turns, see what’s got Barry’s attention.
PETER
No - no. Mary of Magdala.
BARRY
How did Sharon get here?


He personally takes on the hard task of adding humour to the Bible, but fails to grasp pretty simple concepts, such as the one above. That might be his character, but for me it just felt a little too dim witted.

There are a few typos and unintentional double spaces. A suggestion if you don't already do it. I know you use Final Draft, I find the read-back feature really good for picking up typos that spell check misses.

Quick example:


Quoted Text
VOICES FROM THE MOB
Stone here! Stone her! Stone her!



Quoted Text
JEWISH ELDER
(holding up the coin)
Is it lawful of not? To pay Cesar
taxes?
J


Spell check isn't going to flag "here", but in the read back it will be pronounced "here" and you will know it's wrong immediately. Likewise with "of" being "or". Sometimes you can read the same incorrect word the same way 100 times, as we all know

Really liked this bit of dialogue, just damn good writing.


Quoted Text
JESUS
Perhaps a win-win. Cesar has a
right to mint coins with his image
and demand the return of those
coins. God has minted the human
soul. Cesar has no claim on that.
Offer your soul to God. Offer every
part of yourself to him as an
instrument of righteousness.


And I'm done.

So I remember from when I read Dark World you preferred I didn't dwell on the nit-picky stuff. So there is a few typos, etc that I haven't mentioned but they are there and need a clean.

Lots of the humour worked for me, the majority I would say, but some of it didn't. For me what didn't work the longer it went on was how idiotic Barry was, he says and does some really stupid things and I feel it takes maybe too long for his few redeeming characteristics to show through.

One other issue for me was that Barry and Jesus' relationship feels like it comes a bit out of no where. For over half the script Barry is screwing around, not taking anything too seriously, and seemingly not learning anything, then all of a sudden (at least that's how it felt to me) he's saying he loves Jesus and he's breaking down at the last supper. I feel their bond is underdeveloped. They do spend a lot of time together, I just think Barry's input should be more meaningful earlier on. This will remedy the two things that stuck out for me, Barry being too idiotic and building a more solid and caring relationship with Jesus.

All in all, its a fun read and a unique idea. The dialogue, as always, is a stand out.

I think with with a little massaging, and a tiny clean up this is going to be another winning script. But what do I know, I'm not the Page finalist

Congrats on another fine feature, Dave!


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Revision History (3 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Warren  -  January 9th, 2019, 9:33pm
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Dustin
Posted: January 9th, 2019, 4:59am Report to Moderator
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I've only ever read of screenwriting gurus claiming actors don't like parentheticals. The actors I've spoken to couldn't care less. They'll ignore them if they choose to anyway. Just as directors will feel free to ignore large sections of your story, or even 'improve' it in certain ways.

We should write our stories in the way we believe they should be written, not how another writer thinks they should be.

I'll try and find some time to read this. In the meantime, good luck.


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MarkRenshaw
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Dustin - personal preference aside I'm quoting actors I've worked with (indie unknown actors I admit) but I've also attended several screenwriting classes run by famous actors in which they go into detail about what they look for in scripts. It's not just actors, but their agents read the script first. Agents know what their actors like and dislike and many scripts don't get to their clients if certain elements are included or missing!

Dave - I didn't hate the script. I see great potential. It is just hard work at the moment when you've been so effective in making the reader dislike the main character. I think with a polish and some tweaks this could be amazing.


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GregoryM
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I read the whole script. I think its very clever in its approach, but I think theres a few issues which can be worked on to make it better.

Most importantly is barrys relationship with jesus. At the moment the script feels very 'surfacey' like the sarcasm and quips of barry are entertaining enough to carry interest through jesus' journey, there isnt enough realism or gravitas to help foster an environment where a real bond can form between the two of them. When he tells god hed rather him die than jesus at the last supper it feels unearned and thus rings false. Like its not that we dont believe him and think hes lying to god just to get what he wants. But it feels like since there was never any threats present or major road blocks which made us feel like barry or jesus wouod fail that their relationship ends up feeling a little one sided in the end.

There was this feeling of impending obviousness to the ending. Everyone knows what happens to jesus. We could all guess what would ultimately happen to barry. Ita difficult to create doubt when the story is so well known so its an uphill battle and a problem thats not easily solved

I think you need create a b story here and figure out a way to get ahead of the reader. Sacrifice some ofnthe humor for darkness and maybe shift the jesis character from being a charicature of himself to beinf something more real. Jesus portrayal feels like a cutout of quotes from the bible which was itself written by other people so many times, that by the time it reaches the script it feels one note and played out.

Solutions: maybe try shortening the time frame which the jesus story takes place in. Lose pages by getting to jesus faster and lose some of the jokes and fluff dialogue (which may seem counterintuitive)

My instinct is that if barry is sent by god to jesus not for barrys benefit but for Jesus' benefit to save jesus from the temptation of satan, then youd have enough for a b plot that adds enough complexity to the story and allows for you to play with irony. Make barry save himself by saving jesus so jesus can save barry by saving mankind. Ditch the i cant take it anymore take me instead revelation and try to find something real in there. Right now it feels stale and barry isnt believable and there isnt enough emotion. Create additional drama and complexity by reimagining jesus as a flawed individual struggling with himself and allow barry to 'find him' by trying to help jesus become the person barry believes he should be.

Just my 2 cents. Apologies for typos this was written on my phone.
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Dustin
Posted: January 9th, 2019, 6:05am Report to Moderator
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The only place I've ever heard of a complaint in this area is from other writers that claim actors believe this. I used to parrot this information too, but in my actual experiences with real actors (not just unknown ones), parentheticals are not an issue at all. It's just words on a page that serve as a guide. They can be ignored. Indeed, the director may even decide to shoot the same scene using a variety of tones. However, as far as I know, the writer's intentions will usually be considered first.


Rejecting scripts due to parentheticals does not make good business sense, so we're better off not working with them anyway. Mate, those classes you paid for are a load of bollocks. Actors, giving lectures on screenwriting? Come on. That would be like me giving a lecture on acting. I can't believe you sucked that bullshit in and paid for it. Why? You're a great writer. Seriously. You don't need to pay for bad advice like that.


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GregoryM
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Regarding parentheticals. I dont understand why they're being discussed in this thread. The script uses them for function and clarity. Who the person is talking to when it might be confusing. Or to clarify sarcasm when it might be missed. And sometimes for pauses in lieu of a beat. Or for brief actions when interrupting dialoue is wasteful. All perfectly acceptable and efficient uses of parentheticals. Id recommend checking out the Godfather script which employs heavy use of parentheticals for action quite effectively.

That being said, id swap 'at' for 'to'

Instead of 'at Booker' make it 'to Booker'

But i dont think it matters either way.
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Mr.Ripley
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David

Spoilers!

Something occurred to me: if the story is focused on Barry getting over Sharon, why not have Sharon as Jesus? Sharon and Jesus are alike in their messages such as “letting go and merciful”. It’ll also create some interesting dialogue exchanges.

Gabe
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Matthew Taylor
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Hi David

I managed to grab a few more pages at work today.
I have jotted down thoughts and feelings as I have gone, so they may not make sense, or they could be completely wrong lol Who knows

I am up to page 33 - So my notes only cover those

Up to pg 10, I don't hate Barry. He is an arsehole, but he's a lovable arsehole - You can see the good there, loving his dog, his mutually respectful interaction with the police     
Strikes me as a good guy gone astray
     
I really like your dialogue so far, a strong point. The "I still love her" line seemed a little bit, honest, kind of like he is wearing his heart on his sleeve which didn't fit with what I have seen of him so far
     
The Catholics and children joke in his stand up - This joke was met with silence and audience being uncomfortable - In my experience watching stand up, this would be met with laughter followed by "ooo"
I have heard lot's of these jokes on stage, and they are met that way, but not silence - I guess it depends on the make up of the audience and the location of the stand up
Addition to the above - Is this his stand up show? As in, the audience knew who they were buying tickets for. If so, they know what type of jokes he does. Anyone buying a ticket for Frankie Boyle won't be offended by the things he says, as they know it is coming.
Anyway this is a small point and doesn't affect the story any
     
Don't like the description of Saint Peter being a skinny Santa Claus. I'm guessing you mean the face and white beard, but now I keep picturing him in a red Santa suit
     
I find some of the parenthetical unnecessary (a lot of them are necessary) - Ones such as (remembering) and (re:himself) I already get those from the context and dialogue.
     
Pg 18 - randomly a character called ASSISTANT speaks, think this should be Saint Peter
     
The montage could have been funnier I thought - what was he doodling in the bible? What was the comic book, could it have been a seriously inappropriate one?
     
I think I am a little disappointed that you went with the typical fluffy white clouds and pearly gates form of heaven - Was hoping for something different, but that's just me.
     
I like the multiple Saint Peters - and on a plus side, if this gets made, they will only have to hire 1 actor lol
     
I like that the script is littered with characters using God's name in vain - I am assuming this was intentional
     
Two jokes in his test paper killed me - the Able one and the created man before woman one.
     
Character wise - I am liking Barry more and more, seems like the kind of guy who hides his true feelings behind jokes. Hopefully later on, his barrier of jokes is broken down and more about him is revealed, We shall see
     
Getting confused about your God character - at times his dialogue is dry and to the point, then he throws out jokes and sarcasm - can't get a good feel for him.

I am still really enjoying this. Will read more when I get the chance


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Nolan
Posted: January 9th, 2019, 11:51am Report to Moderator
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Dave,

Finished this today.  Overall I enjoyed it.  After reviewing some of the other comments I can reiterate what a few others have said about Barry's redeeming qualities coming through a little late.  

Comedy is subjective, which we all know, so this will work more for some than it will for others.  In saying that, there were definitely some moments where I had a good laugh!  

**Spoilers**

After the introduction of Jesus, and especially when he went back to talk to God a few times, it was quite apparent that he wasn't going to reach his objective and it was obvious that the story was more about his redemption.  When I knew that was coming on, I was able to just enjoy the story and not dwell on him trying to make the bible funny.  Not sure if that was what you were going for, but I have an assumption that it may have been???

Anyhow, as always, well written and I thought it was a fun story.

All the best,

Nolan
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Pale Yellow
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I love this title. I love this concept.

Before even reading the script, I think this is VERY marketable Dave. Even as a limited series. Netflix and others are gobbling them up in 2019... gonna be a good year I think.

Best of luck with this one!
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eldave1
Posted: January 9th, 2019, 1:46pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Warren
Back to jump into this. Notes as I read. I'm hoping to do it in one sitting.


Thanks for the read, mate - as always - grateful for the time.

SPOILERS


Quoted Text
Barry quite often comes off pretty stupid, which is a little hard to believe because he can't be a complete idiot if he has managed to forge a successful comedian career, one where he has a HBO gig.


Interesting point. A lot of the humor stems from his ignorance. But one can be ignorant without being stupid (hope that makes sense).  So I'll take another look at the dim-witted vs ignorant parts. i.e., the goal is for an ignorant character - not  a dumb one.

Ironically, I am currently working on another draft of this where Barry is really smart (think a cross between Christopher Hitchens and Bill Burr).  Want to write some jokes from that perspective. At the end of the day I will probably end up with a mish-mash of the two.


Quoted Text
There are a few typos and unintentional double spaces. A suggestion if you don't already do it. I know you use Final Draft, I find the read-back feature really good for picking up typos that spell check misses.


Great idea - thanks.


Quoted Text
Lots of the humour worked for me, the majority I would say, but some of it didn't. For me what didn't work the longer it went on was how idiotic Barry was, he says and does some really stupid things and I feel it takes maybe too long for his few redeeming characteristics to show through.


See above response



Quoted Text
One other issue for me was that Barry and Jesus' relationship feels like it comes a bit out of no where. For over half the script Barry is screwing around, not taking anything too seriously, and seemingly not learning anything, then all of a sudden (at least that's how it felt to me) he's saying he loves Jesus and he's breaking down at the last supper. I feel their bond is underdeveloped. The do spend a lot of time together, I just think Barry's input should be more meaningful earlier on. This will remedy the two things that stuck out for me, Barry being too idiotic and building a more solid and caring relationship with Jesus.


My wife had the same issue. The way she put it as they start off as strangers - they need to becomes friends sooner. Will look at it.


Quoted Text
All in all, its a fun read and a unique idea. The dialogue, as always, is a stand out.

I think with with a little massaging, and a tiny clean up this is going to be another winning script. But what do I know, I'm not the Page finalist

Congrats on another fine feature, Dave!


Thanks, Warren and thanks for weighing in.


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eldave1
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Quoted from Dustin
I've only ever read of screenwriting gurus claiming actors don't like parentheticals. The actors I've spoken to couldn't care less. They'll ignore them if they choose to anyway. Just as directors will feel free to ignore large sections of your story, or even 'improve' it in certain ways.

We should write our stories in the way we believe they should be written, not how another writer thinks they should be.

I'll try and find some time to read this. In the meantime, good luck.


Thanks, Dustin.


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eldave1
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Quoted from Mr.Ripley
David

Spoilers!

Something occurred to me: if the story is focused on Barry getting over Sharon, why not have Sharon as Jesus? Sharon and Jesus are alike in their messages such as “letting go and merciful”. It’ll also create some interesting dialogue exchanges.

Gabe


Interesting idea, Gabe - but too much of a stretch in my mind. On the other hand, might be interesting if he looked like Reverend Jackson - although I'd lose some nice Judas jokes


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eldave1
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
Hi David

I managed to grab a few more pages at work today.
I have jotted down thoughts and feelings as I have gone, so they may not make sense, or they could be completely wrong lol Who knows

I am up to page 33 - So my notes only cover those

Up to pg 10, I don't hate Barry. He is an arsehole, but he's a lovable arsehole - You can see the good there, loving his dog, his mutually respectful interaction with the police     
Strikes me as a good guy gone astray
     
I really like your dialogue so far, a strong point. The "I still love her" line seemed a little bit, honest, kind of like he is wearing his heart on his sleeve which didn't fit with what I have seen of him so far
     
The Catholics and children joke in his stand up - This joke was met with silence and audience being uncomfortable - In my experience watching stand up, this would be met with laughter followed by "ooo"
I have heard lot's of these jokes on stage, and they are met that way, but not silence - I guess it depends on the make up of the audience and the location of the stand up
Addition to the above - Is this his stand up show? As in, the audience knew who they were buying tickets for. If so, they know what type of jokes he does. Anyone buying a ticket for Frankie Boyle won't be offended by the things he says, as they know it is coming.
Anyway this is a small point and doesn't affect the story any
     
Don't like the description of Saint Peter being a skinny Santa Claus. I'm guessing you mean the face and white beard, but now I keep picturing him in a red Santa suit
     
I find some of the parenthetical unnecessary (a lot of them are necessary) - Ones such as (remembering) and (re:himself) I already get those from the context and dialogue.
     
Pg 18 - randomly a character called ASSISTANT speaks, think this should be Saint Peter
     
The montage could have been funnier I thought - what was he doodling in the bible? What was the comic book, could it have been a seriously inappropriate one?
     
I think I am a little disappointed that you went with the typical fluffy white clouds and pearly gates form of heaven - Was hoping for something different, but that's just me.
     
I like the multiple Saint Peters - and on a plus side, if this gets made, they will only have to hire 1 actor lol
     
I like that the script is littered with characters using God's name in vain - I am assuming this was intentional
     
Two jokes in his test paper killed me - the Able one and the created man before woman one.
     
Character wise - I am liking Barry more and more, seems like the kind of guy who hides his true feelings behind jokes. Hopefully later on, his barrier of jokes is broken down and more about him is revealed, We shall see
     
Getting confused about your God character - at times his dialogue is dry and to the point, then he throws out jokes and sarcasm - can't get a good feel for him.

I am still really enjoying this. Will read more when I get the chance


Thanks, Matt. You raised a lot of food for thought here. Will definitely look at these in the re-write. I am for sure redoing the opening montage - my mind was just dry there.

Glad you liked what you liked.


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eldave1
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Quoted from Nolan
Dave,

Finished this today.  Overall I enjoyed it.  After reviewing some of the other comments I can reiterate what a few others have said about Barry's redeeming qualities coming through a little late.  

Comedy is subjective, which we all know, so this will work more for some than it will for others.  In saying that, there were definitely some moments where I had a good laugh!  

**Spoilers**

After the introduction of Jesus, and especially when he went back to talk to God a few times, it was quite apparent that he wasn't going to reach his objective and it was obvious that the story was more about his redemption.  When I knew that was coming on, I was able to just enjoy the story and not dwell on him trying to make the bible funny.  Not sure if that was what you were going for, but I have an assumption that it may have been???

Anyhow, as always, well written and I thought it was a fun story.

All the best,

Nolan


Thanks, Nolan - this:


Quoted Text
After the introduction of Jesus, and especially when he went back to talk to God a few times, it was quite apparent that he wasn't going to reach his objective and it was obvious that the story was more about his redemption.  When I knew that was coming on, I was able to just enjoy the story and not dwell on him trying to make the bible funny.  Not sure if that was what you were going for, but I have an assumption that it may have been???


Is spot on. Yes - the goal is shifting and I want everyone to realize that before Barry does. As an atheist myself, it was a a bit of a sticky widget writing about redemption since I don't believe in God (wish I did - just don't). I know there is a story risk in the goal stake and the protag doesn't even realize he's pursuing it - Will have to wait to see how this lands.

Thanks again for the read and the notes - appreciated



My Scripts can all be seen here:

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eldave1
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Quoted from MarkRenshaw

Dave - I didn't hate the script. I see great potential. It is just hard work at the moment when you've been so effective in making the reader dislike the main character. I think with a polish and some tweaks this could be amazing.


Thanks, Mark.



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MarkRenshaw
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Quoted from Dustin
The only place I've ever heard of a complaint in this area is from other writers that claim actors believe this. I used to parrot this information too, but in my actual experiences with real actors (not just unknown ones), parentheticals are not an issue at all. It's just words on a page that serve as a guide. They can be ignored. Indeed, the director may even decide to shoot the same scene using a variety of tones. However, as far as I know, the writer's intentions will usually be considered first.


Rejecting scripts due to parentheticals does not make good business sense, so we're better off not working with them anyway. Mate, those classes you paid for are a load of bollocks. Actors, giving lectures on screenwriting? Come on. That would be like me giving a lecture on acting. I can't believe you sucked that bullshit in and paid for it. Why? You're a great writer. Seriously. You don't need to pay for bad advice like that.


I'm flattered you consider me a great writer, but I didn't just wake up one day as such. It's taken a lot of reading, writing and studying the craft, which has included attending carefully selected workshops and seminars. I'm not daft enough to accept scriptwriting lessons from actors (unless said actors are renowned writers themselves like Mark Gatiss, then I do pay attention)  but when they tell me what they look for when reading a script, I believe them.  And you would be surprised at the some of the reasons agents reject scripts, whether that makes business sense or not.

When I have been lucky enough to sit with writers, producers, actors and directors from Die Hard, Robocop, Starship Troopers, Doctor Who, Trading Places, The Girl With All The Gifts and the head of the BBC writers rooms among others, as well as the agents of these people, and they tell me what they look for in a script - I take notes, bear it in mind and thank them for their time.

Dave - sorry for hijacking this thread. Parentiticals is a personal preference. I was just trying to pass on what I've been told from people in the business. In the end, if you network with a director and they like your work, you can pretty much do whatever you like with the script. I'll leave the conversation now so you can focus on your script.  



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StevenClark
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Dave,

Notes were written as I read. Here goes.

Pg 4 Liking how you set the tone here. I can see everything you want me to see. Good job so far.

Pg 10 Is Barry black or white? I get the sense the Rev Jackson is black, but you didn't make a mention of that either. I feel it's important to know this, as I'm kinda lost with this detail. I'm picturing Barry white, Rev Jackson black, and Sharon white. Comedically, I think these are details we need to know. I think what's throwing me off is the name Jackson. Can you clarify your intention please...

… Another reason I mention the above is that if The Rev Jackson is black, and Sharon is white, that in itself could be, visually, comedic.

Pg 20 I believe someone else mention how natural the dialogue flows, and it does flow well, comes off natural. Pretty much the whole script reads well, but that's a given. Nothing I can pinpoint as awkward or needs changing yet.


One thing I'd suggest is changing the title. A buddy of mine wrote a script entitled The Unlikely Temptations Of Christ. It was funny, and it got produced and turned out absolutely fantastic. Problem was, when the filmmaker tried to enter it into contests NOBODY would touch it. Why? The inclusion of Christ in the title turned everyone off. So they retitled in Unlikely Temptations. Everyone accepted it! It won awards, garnered several laurels and everyone loved it. So, just something to bear in mind here.


Pg 35 Bottom of page you use the word pace in consecutive paragraphs and it reads a little off.


Page 55 Love that Booker returns. I liked that dog and was sad to see him go.


Page 90 Jesus: Yes, I got it. One of my favorite lines so far and the first, I think, for Jesus to sort of break character.


Page 103 Barry: But after that you were a whore. I laughed out loud there!


This was really good, Dave. Quickly paced, almost too quick, I read it in one sitting. My lack of notes means that nothing much stood out to me that needs changing. I'm sure more astute readers will find fault, but other than the odd typo...


Liked Barry's arc. Everything was tied up neatly with a bow.


Very bold subject matter to take on. Good tht it's a comedy, and it works on several levels for me.


Poking good natured fun at religion is one. You also managed to - WOW - humanize Jesus, and that was pretty amazing. Not for nothing, I'd bet that's how Jesus would speak. Don't know how much research you did here, but everything, Biblically, seemed plausible the way you wrote it, whether or not it was accurate. Though when you introduce Jesus he is 30, but I'm sure you're aware he was 33 when he died. So, by having Barry come back to God to ask questions we should be aware of some sort of time jump there.


Also, the story never managed to take itself too seriously,but splicing in Barry's one-liners alongside the travels and miracles of Jesus made entertaining fodder.


Barry's longing for Sharon was heart wrenching at times, and it was in those moments the story became more human, and Barry more likeable. So likeable at that point that you were rooting for him, so that was good.


Funny, but I never found Barry detestable. I kinda liked him all the way through, and early on I found his hijinks more amusing than anything. Kind of like the guy we love to hate.


Also, in Jesus' final hours is where Barry's arc turns. He'd "made a friend in Jesus" like to song says.

Wonderful comedic moments. Saving the final FU - the cut cypress trees flipping the bird is brilliant, and I believe that joke was set up in the beginning somewhere, then revisited in the end. Well plotted out, and nicely executed.

Overall, very fine effort here and I wish you all the best with it!!

Steve




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eldave1
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Quoted from StevenClark
Dave,

Notes were written as I read. Here goes.

Pg 4 Liking how you set the tone here. I can see everything you want me to see. Good job so far.

Pg 10 Is Barry black or white? I get the sense the Rev Jackson is black, but you didn't make a mention of that either. I feel it's important to know this, as I'm kinda lost with this detail. I'm picturing Barry white, Rev Jackson black, and Sharon white. Comedically, I think these are details we need to know. I think what's throwing me off is the name Jackson. Can you clarify your intention please...

… Another reason I mention the above is that if The Rev Jackson is black, and Sharon is white, that in itself could be, visually, comedic.

Pg 20 I believe someone else mention how natural the dialogue flows, and it does flow well, comes off natural. Pretty much the whole script reads well, but that's a given. Nothing I can pinpoint as awkward or needs changing yet.


One thing I'd suggest is changing the title. A buddy of mine wrote a script entitled The Unlikely Temptations Of Christ. It was funny, and it got produced and turned out absolutely fantastic. Problem was, when the filmmaker tried to enter it into contests NOBODY would touch it. Why? The inclusion of Christ in the title turned everyone off. So they retitled in Unlikely Temptations. Everyone accepted it! It won awards, garnered several laurels and everyone loved it. So, just something to bear in mind here.


Pg 35 Bottom of page you use the word pace in consecutive paragraphs and it reads a little off.


Page 55 Love that Booker returns. I liked that dog and was sad to see him go.


Page 90 Jesus: Yes, I got it. One of my favorite lines so far and the first, I think, for Jesus to sort of break character.


Page 103 Barry: But after that you were a whore. I laughed out loud there!


This was really good, Dave. Quickly paced, almost too quick, I read it in one sitting. My lack of notes means that nothing much stood out to me that needs changing. I'm sure more astute readers will find fault, but other than the odd typo...


Liked Barry's arc. Everything was tied up neatly with a bow.


Very bold subject matter to take on. Good tht it's a comedy, and it works on several levels for me.


Poking good natured fun at religion is one. You also managed to - WOW - humanize Jesus, and that was pretty amazing. Not for nothing, I'd bet that's how Jesus would speak. Don't know how much research you did here, but everything, Biblically, seemed plausible the way you wrote it, whether or not it was accurate. Though when you introduce Jesus he is 30, but I'm sure you're aware he was 33 when he died. So, by having Barry come back to God to ask questions we should be aware of some sort of time jump there.


Also, the story never managed to take itself too seriously,but splicing in Barry's one-liners alongside the travels and miracles of Jesus made entertaining fodder.


Barry's longing for Sharon was heart wrenching at times, and it was in those moments the story became more human, and Barry more likeable. So likeable at that point that you were rooting for him, so that was good.


Funny, but I never found Barry detestable. I kinda liked him all the way through, and early on I found his hijinks more amusing than anything. Kind of like the guy we love to hate.


Also, in Jesus' final hours is where Barry's arc turns. He'd "made a friend in Jesus" like to song says.

Wonderful comedic moments. Saving the final FU - the cut cypress trees flipping the bird is brilliant, and I believe that joke was set up in the beginning somewhere, then revisited in the end. Well plotted out, and nicely executed.

Overall, very fine effort here and I wish you all the best with it!!

Steve



Thanks for the notes friend. I really had thought of a race in terms of Reverend Jackson. Interesting note on the title. I hadn't thought of that push back. Glad you enjoyed it
Thanks much for the read and notes.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
Posted: January 9th, 2019, 11:35pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from GregoryM
I read the whole script. I think its very clever in its approach, but I think theres a few issues which can be worked on to make it better.

Most importantly is barrys relationship with jesus. At the moment the script feels very 'surfacey' like the sarcasm and quips of barry are entertaining enough to carry interest through jesus' journey, there isnt enough realism or gravitas to help foster an environment where a real bond can form between the two of them. When he tells god hed rather him die than jesus at the last supper it feels unearned and thus rings false. Like its not that we dont believe him and think hes lying to god just to get what he wants. But it feels like since there was never any threats present or major road blocks which made us feel like barry or jesus wouod fail that their relationship ends up feeling a little one sided in the end.

There was this feeling of impending obviousness to the ending. Everyone knows what happens to jesus. We could all guess what would ultimately happen to barry. Ita difficult to create doubt when the story is so well known so its an uphill battle and a problem thats not easily solved

I think you need create a b story here and figure out a way to get ahead of the reader. Sacrifice some ofnthe humor for darkness and maybe shift the jesis character from being a charicature of himself to beinf something more real. Jesus portrayal feels like a cutout of quotes from the bible which was itself written by other people so many times, that by the time it reaches the script it feels one note and played out.

Solutions: maybe try shortening the time frame which the jesus story takes place in. Lose pages by getting to jesus faster and lose some of the jokes and fluff dialogue (which may seem counterintuitive)

My instinct is that if barry is sent by god to jesus not for barrys benefit but for Jesus' benefit to save jesus from the temptation of satan, then youd have enough for a b plot that adds enough complexity to the story and allows for you to play with irony. Make barry save himself by saving jesus so jesus can save barry by saving mankind. Ditch the i cant take it anymore take me instead revelation and try to find something real in there. Right now it feels stale and barry isnt believable and there isnt enough emotion. Create additional drama and complexity by reimagining jesus as a flawed individual struggling with himself and allow barry to 'find him' by trying to help jesus become the person barry believes he should be.

Just my 2 cents. Apologies for typos this was written on my phone.


Gregory - much thanks for the read and the notes. You are the second or third person that has commented on feeling that the depth of their relationship at the end was unearned - this is definitly an area for me to look at.

Many of the quotes from Jesus are indeed from the bible.

Not a fan of going with Jesus as a flawed individual or putting Barry in a position of saving him - just a bridge too far for me.

Again - much thanks for the thoughts on this - really appreciate that you took the time.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Zack
Posted: January 10th, 2019, 3:34am Report to Moderator
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Hey Dave,

25 pages in and i'm really digging it, Dude. Everything Barry says is funny. he's such a smart ass. I think I now where this is heading, but I'll hold of on predictions. All I can say is that I'm enjoying the read. My favorite part so far is when Barry meets Saint Peter. The line "Everyone smokes down there." made me crack a huge goofy grin. Good stuff.

As for the technical aspects, pretty much no complaints. A couple of minor typos, and one instance where you refer to 'Saint Peter' as just 'Peter". I think you should remain consistent with his name. No biggie though. I love the way you write, Man. I'm really breezing through this.

Have to stop for the night. I've got a doctors appointment in the morning and I need to get to sleep. But I'm really looking forward to finishing this up after my appointment is finished. Thanks for sharing this, Dude. I'm really learning a lot from you.

Zack
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eldave1
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Quoted from Zack
Hey Dave,

25 pages in and i'm really digging it, Dude. Everything Barry says is funny. he's such a smart ass. I think I now where this is heading, but I'll hold of on predictions. All I can say is that I'm enjoying the read. My favorite part so far is when Barry meets Saint Peter. The line "Everyone smokes down there." made me crack a huge goofy grin. Good stuff.

As for the technical aspects, pretty much no complaints. A couple of minor typos, and one instance where you refer to 'Saint Peter' as just 'Peter". I think you should remain consistent with his name. No biggie though. I love the way you write, Man. I'm really breezing through this.

Have to stop for the night. I've got a doctors appointment in the morning and I need to get to sleep. But I'm really looking forward to finishing this up after my appointment is finished. Thanks for sharing this, Dude. I'm really learning a lot from you.

Zack


Thanks a lot Zach. Glad that you were enjoying it. I appreciate the feedback


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Matthew Taylor
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I picked this up again today at work - Before I knew it I got from page 33 to 66 and was so engrossed I forgot to make any notes.

I'm sure my notes aren't helpful anyway so I won't go back and write any.

I honestly hope this is produced, it is very clever and very funny. You have obviously put a lot of time and thought into it, and it shows through in the writing


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eldave1
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Quoted from Matthew Taylor
I picked this up again today at work - Before I knew it I got from page 33 to 66 and was so engrossed I forgot to make any notes.

I'm sure my notes aren't helpful anyway so I won't go back and write any.

I honestly hope this is produced, it is very clever and very funny. You have obviously put a lot of time and thought into it, and it shows through in the writing


Thanks buddy. I am glad you enjoyed it I appreciate the kind words


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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BarryJohn
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Different -  A REAL GOOD READ! - I'll buy that cinema ticket!!
PS: Not religiously offensive at all.. I think God himself loved the read.

Barry John


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eldave1
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Quoted from BarryJohn
Different -  A REAL GOOD READ! - I'll buy that cinema ticket!!
PS: Not religiously offensive at all.. I think God himself loved the read.

Barry John


Thanks- appreciate the kind words


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Zack
Posted: January 12th, 2019, 12:52am Report to Moderator
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Gonna be 100% honest with ya, Dave. When I first started reading this, I didn't believe I'd finish it. Not because it was bad. I just have an incredibly short attention span, and like I said earlier, comedy isn't usually my thing. But something happened that I wasn't expecting. The more I read, the more I wanted to read. I became so absorbed that I couldn't wait to read the next page. I had to know if Barry would find redemption. More importantly, I really wanted him to.

I said earlier that I thought I could predict the way this would end. I was a little right, but mostly wrong. If that makes sense. You see, I expected Barry to redeem himself by the end. But I also expected the vulgar humor from the first act to carry through to the 2nd and 3rd acts. I was way off there. The more Barry failed to make the bible funny, the more he grew as a character. And, not trying to be sappy, I honestly felt like I grew a little bit with him. Full disclosure, I've had a rough past couple of years. It's been my own fault. I've been selfish and cruel to those who care about me. In many ways, I empathized with Barry. I've had drug problems. Been in and out of jail for stupid reasons. Lied and taken advantage of those who have trusted me. Not trying to sell you a sap story. Just saying, I really connected with this character more than I thought I would.

I fully expected Barry to make the bible funny by the end. In hindsight, that wouldn't have been satisfying. Instead, he learned to become a better person. In my opinion, that's a much better ending.

And even though the vulgarity mellowed out as the story went along, it remained funny throughout. The ending actually got pretty emotional, which I really didn't expect. You truly put a ton of effort into this and I really hope someone picks this up. Thank you so much for sharing this, Dude. I learned so much by reading through this. I actually plan to read through this a few more times and take some notes. I hope one day I can write this well.

Great job. This put such a big smile on my face.

Zack
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eldave1
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Quoted from Zack
Gonna be 100% honest with ya, Dave. When I first started reading this, I didn't believe I'd finish it. Not because it was bad. I just have an incredibly short attention span, and like I said earlier, comedy isn't usually my thing. But something happened that I wasn't expecting. The more I read, the more I wanted to read. I became so absorbed that I couldn't wait to read the next page. I had to know if Barry would find redemption. More importantly, I really wanted him to.

I said earlier that I thought I could predict the way this would end. I was a little right, but mostly wrong. If that makes sense. You see, I expected Barry to redeem himself by the end. But I also expected the vulgar humor from the first act to carry through to the 2nd and 3rd acts. I was way off there. The more Barry failed to make the bible funny, the more he grew as a character. And, not trying to be sappy, I honestly felt like I grew a little bit with him. Full disclosure, I've had a rough past couple of years. It's been my own fault. I've been selfish and cruel to those who care about me. In many ways, I empathized with Barry. I've had drug problems. Been in and out of jail for stupid reasons. Lied and taken advantage of those who have trusted me. Not trying to sell you a sap story. Just saying, I really connected with this character more than I thought I would.

I fully expected Barry to make the bible funny by the end. In hindsight, that wouldn't have been satisfying. Instead, he learned to become a better person. In my opinion, that's a much better ending.

And even though the vulgarity mellowed out as the story went along, it remained funny throughout. The ending actually got pretty emotional, which I really didn't expect. You truly put a ton of effort into this and I really hope someone picks this up. Thank you so much for sharing this, Dude. I learned so much by reading through this. I actually plan to read through this a few more times and take some notes. I hope one day I can write this well.

Great job. This put such a big smile on my face.

Zack


Thanks so much for the kind words. Much appreciated. I'm glad you enjoyed it and glad that it meant something to you. Again thanks for the read and the notes. Glad I struck a chord


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Max Ruddock
Posted: January 14th, 2019, 6:56pm Report to Moderator
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I was reeled in by the log line but only read so far as it's not really my cup of tea. However, I thought the writing was really decent. I'll keep an eye out for anything else you post up in the future.

Cheers

Max
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eldave1
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Quoted from Max Ruddock
I was reeled in by the log line but only read so far as it's not really my cup of tea. However, I thought the writing was really decent. I'll keep an eye out for anything else you post up in the future.

Cheers

Max


Well, thanks for the look in, Max. Truly understand the cup of tea thing - I have a hard time with horror by the way of example - just not an enjoyable genre for me.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Max Ruddock
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You're welcome mate.

Ever heard of a guy called Doug Stanhope? American comedian. When I was reading it that guy kept popping into my head.

Wondered if it was someone like him who you had in mind whilst writing.

Cheers

Max
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eldave1
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Quoted from Max Ruddock
You're welcome mate.

Ever heard of a guy called Doug Stanhope? American comedian. When I was reading it that guy kept popping into my head.

Wondered if it was someone like him who you had in mind whilst writing.

Cheers

Max


No - have not heard of him - I was thinking of a mash-up between Bill Burr and Steve Carrell


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Warren
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Quoted from eldave1


No - have not heard of him - I was thinking of a mash-up between Bill Burr and Steve Carrell


With a few changes Ricky Gervais was literally made for this role!




To View All My Scripts Please Use The Link Below

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eldave1
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Quoted from Warren


With a few changes Ricky Gervais was literally made for this role!




Oooh - that is a good one!


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Grandma Bear
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Dave, finished your script. Sorry it took awhile. Sometimes if I'm busy I have to read just a few pages at the time.

So, your story here is a classic, he learned his lesson in the end. That works. That is not to say that this was a home run for me though. I thought the premise of Barry having to make religion fun in order to get more followers was a great one. Then it turns out that Barry finds out that was pretty much impossible, but he still gets a second chance at life because he makes Jesus laugh once at the end. Not the same thing. In other words, you didn't deliver on the premise, IMHO. Instead of making religion funny to attract more people, Barry quips occasional funny one-liners and occasionally does humorous things. None of which would attract new followers or believers. This was a bit of a letdown.

I also felt that I would've liked to see Barry try harder. Getting a second chance or a chance to go to heaven instead of hell is pretty serious, yet Barry doesn't take it seriously at all. He also seems too dense to get what Saint Peter and God are telling him. This makes him come off as stupid. Not in a good and charming way like Gump, but in roll-my-eyes kind of dumb. Add to that that he's not very likable and the middle was a bit slow for me as I didn't really care what happened to him.

I would also rethink the scenes at the DMV if I were you. GREAT idea, but visually really boring after the first time.

All in all, not bad at all, but needs more to stand out.

Hope any of this can be of help. No need to answer the points I've made, but if you have any questions, feel free to ask.  


Page 1     A walking postal carrier. I guess he's new on the job if he's surprised to see the condition of Barry's property. Perhaps have him say something that suggest he's tired of seeing this place instead?

Also, you write that this is morning, which makes Barry drinking a beer say a lot about his character. However, an audience will not know this is morning unless you show it somewhere. My mail lady doesn't show up until afternoon, so that's not a give away.

Page 2     Good joke with the crap cannon.

Page 4     Can't say I'm a big fan of Barry at this point. I hope he does something fairly soon that makes me empathize with him a little. Even if he's supposed to be a jerk and eventually change, I think it would be good if he can just do a little something to make me root for him soon.

Page 9     Nice little ending there on this page. Peaked my interest and I want to know more. Expertly added to make the audience immediately empathize with Barry.

Page  11   George Lopez. I met him at a pitch fest in LA ten years ago. He was real nice and offered to read a friend of mine's comedy TV script.  

Would be funny if Barry tried to appeal too Sharon's soft spot by saying something like, He still talks about you (Booker).

Page  13   A drink on the bar stool on the stage reminded me of Dave Allen. Lol. Did you ever watch him? Maybe they all use that set-up nowadays. I wouldn't know since I never watch comedies. I like comedy, just like other stuff even more.

Page  18   Do you have a smoking area! Funny and timely with smokers being shunned from public places these days.

Page  19   Did they go through the gate or just off to the clouds on the side?

Page  20   Funny with the DMV and IRS. Should have a comment there about how everyone hates the IRS too.

Page  23   James Carville's wife, LOL!

A string of funny here. Not necessarily ROFLMAO, but still funny for a longer time. That's good for keeping an audience in the comedic mood.

Page  27   Good point. I think it would make people more interested in at least reading the book. I say this as an atheist who has read the bible cover to cover. In old Swedish no less. A bit of humor would've made the read a little more interesting.

Page  28   Barry, "then maybe I'd of read it.... Shouldn't that be have instead of, of?

Page  30   I think some of that dialogue in the previous pages could be trimmed some. You were doing good with the jokes and then it sort of petered out as it went along.

Page  31   Would be cool if the three stooges scene was in black and white.

Page  33   WOMEN...

Page  42   Something weird happened. Last time I was using the computerI had some more notes that are no longer here. I don't remember them from memory either. Sorry.  

Barry the Atheist. Funny.

Dips "him" back into the river.

Page  45   Just a thought. Shouldn't Barry prove to God that more people would be religious if the bible was funnier instead of trying to make God laugh?

Page 48   Funny that Barry thinks it was cool to encounter satan. A lot of people nowadays would think so, until they actually did.

Page  50   Not being a religious person myself, my mind is starting to wander here a little bit, to be honest. Not sure what to offer up as suggestion, but it just seems as if old stuff is being regurgitated. I feel that maybe there needs to be something happening that is more about plot and not just talking to Jesus in the desert. Something needs to happen.

Page  53   I'm thinking there's not enough visuals going on. A lot of talk, but nothing interesting to watch if this was a film.

Page  60   We are now past the mid-point and I don't really sense anything in particular that has changed. Barry's objective was to make the bible more humorous, but instead, it just seems he ends up in places where he attempts a couple of jokes. It doesn't seem like he's really trying. Not even after God reminds him of this does he attempt to make things funny. Instead he says things that are funny to us the audience due to the situation he is in, but nothing that has to do with making the bible funnier. This sort of makes him come across dense and IMHO, of course, funny people are usually pretty smart.

Page  61   On this page, this same thing is proven again. Peter has just told him that their faces are familiar, but they are not the same people as they are in our present time, still he goes up to Mary Magdalene and apologizes. I know he's drunk, but he just seems to be really stupid at this point.

Page  67   Barry doing the rap thing was funny.

Page  68   I'm with Peter here. Barry is so unbelievably stupid, it's starting to get annoying. He's not even trying to take this mission seriously. By seriously, I don't mean it shouldn't be funny. It's just that he doesn't seem to get anything. He doesn't deserve these chances, IMO.

Page  70   George Harrison, lol!

Page  71   These pages are actually not that bad because they expose that Barry is not that bright, nor likable. A bit of a fraud. Although funny, none of the words are his own.

Whenever I hear Spirit In The Sky, I always think of that scene in Contact.  

Page  72   The sea of Galilee at nigh...

Page  82   I agree. Barry is a crappy person. Lol. Funny here would be if God only gave Barry a "darn minute", so Barry has to hurry or beg for more time. Just a few seconds, please!

Page  83   I think we actually need to see God. Barry spends way too much time at the DMV where we only hear God's voice. It's dull watching. Why not show him to us? I know the answer, but you might want to consider it. It's a moving pictures medium after all.

Page  89   Santa!

Page  95   Glasses, not classes



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eldave1
Posted: January 17th, 2019, 5:27pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Grandma Bear
Dave, finished your script. Sorry it took awhile. Sometimes if I'm busy I have to read just a few pages at the time.

So, your story here is a classic, he learned his lesson in the end. That works. That is not to say that this was a home run for me though. I thought the premise of Barry having to make religion fun in order to get more followers was a great one. Then it turns out that Barry finds out that was pretty much impossible, but he still gets a second chance at life because he makes Jesus laugh once at the end. Not the same thing. In other words, you didn't deliver on the premise, IMHO. Instead of making religion funny to attract more people, Barry quips occasional funny one-liners and occasionally does humorous things. None of which would attract new followers or believers. This was a bit of a letdown.

I also felt that I would've liked to see Barry try harder. Getting a second chance or a chance to go to heaven instead of hell is pretty serious, yet Barry doesn't take it seriously at all. He also seems too dense to get what Saint Peter and God are telling him. This makes him come off as stupid. Not in a good and charming way like Gump, but in roll-my-eyes kind of dumb. Add to that that he's not very likable and the middle was a bit slow for me as I didn't really care what happened to him.

I would also rethink the scenes at the DMV if I were you. GREAT idea, but visually really boring after the first time.

All in all, not bad at all, but needs more to stand out.

Hope any of this can be of help. No need to answer the points I've made, but if you have any questions, feel free to ask.  


Page 1     A walking postal carrier. I guess he's new on the job if he's surprised to see the condition of Barry's property. Perhaps have him say something that suggest he's tired of seeing this place instead?

Also, you write that this is morning, which makes Barry drinking a beer say a lot about his character. However, an audience will not know this is morning unless you show it somewhere. My mail lady doesn't show up until afternoon, so that's not a give away.

Page 2     Good joke with the crap cannon.

Page 4     Can't say I'm a big fan of Barry at this point. I hope he does something fairly soon that makes me empathize with him a little. Even if he's supposed to be a jerk and eventually change, I think it would be good if he can just do a little something to make me root for him soon.

Page 9     Nice little ending there on this page. Peaked my interest and I want to know more. Expertly added to make the audience immediately empathize with Barry.

Page  11   George Lopez. I met him at a pitch fest in LA ten years ago. He was real nice and offered to read a friend of mine's comedy TV script.  

Would be funny if Barry tried to appeal too Sharon's soft spot by saying something like, He still talks about you (Booker).

Page  13   A drink on the bar stool on the stage reminded me of Dave Allen. Lol. Did you ever watch him? Maybe they all use that set-up nowadays. I wouldn't know since I never watch comedies. I like comedy, just like other stuff even more.

Page  18   Do you have a smoking area! Funny and timely with smokers being shunned from public places these days.

Page  19   Did they go through the gate or just off to the clouds on the side?

Page  20   Funny with the DMV and IRS. Should have a comment there about how everyone hates the IRS too.

Page  23   James Carville's wife, LOL!

A string of funny here. Not necessarily ROFLMAO, but still funny for a longer time. That's good for keeping an audience in the comedic mood.

Page  27   Good point. I think it would make people more interested in at least reading the book. I say this as an atheist who has read the bible cover to cover. In old Swedish no less. A bit of humor would've made the read a little more interesting.

Page  28   Barry, "then maybe I'd of read it.... Shouldn't that be have instead of, of?

Page  30   I think some of that dialogue in the previous pages could be trimmed some. You were doing good with the jokes and then it sort of petered out as it went along.

Page  31   Would be cool if the three stooges scene was in black and white.

Page  33   WOMEN...

Page  42   Something weird happened. Last time I was using the computerI had some more notes that are no longer here. I don't remember them from memory either. Sorry.  

Barry the Atheist. Funny.

Dips "him" back into the river.

Page  45   Just a thought. Shouldn't Barry prove to God that more people would be religious if the bible was funnier instead of trying to make God laugh?

Page 48   Funny that Barry thinks it was cool to encounter satan. A lot of people nowadays would think so, until they actually did.

Page  50   Not being a religious person myself, my mind is starting to wander here a little bit, to be honest. Not sure what to offer up as suggestion, but it just seems as if old stuff is being regurgitated. I feel that maybe there needs to be something happening that is more about plot and not just talking to Jesus in the desert. Something needs to happen.

Page  53   I'm thinking there's not enough visuals going on. A lot of talk, but nothing interesting to watch if this was a film.

Page  60   We are now past the mid-point and I don't really sense anything in particular that has changed. Barry's objective was to make the bible more humorous, but instead, it just seems he ends up in places where he attempts a couple of jokes. It doesn't seem like he's really trying. Not even after God reminds him of this does he attempt to make things funny. Instead he says things that are funny to us the audience due to the situation he is in, but nothing that has to do with making the bible funnier. This sort of makes him come across dense and IMHO, of course, funny people are usually pretty smart.

Page  61   On this page, this same thing is proven again. Peter has just told him that their faces are familiar, but they are not the same people as they are in our present time, still he goes up to Mary Magdalene and apologizes. I know he's drunk, but he just seems to be really stupid at this point.

Page  67   Barry doing the rap thing was funny.

Page  68   I'm with Peter here. Barry is so unbelievably stupid, it's starting to get annoying. He's not even trying to take this mission seriously. By seriously, I don't mean it shouldn't be funny. It's just that he doesn't seem to get anything. He doesn't deserve these chances, IMO.

Page  70   George Harrison, lol!

Page  71   These pages are actually not that bad because they expose that Barry is not that bright, nor likable. A bit of a fraud. Although funny, none of the words are his own.

Whenever I hear Spirit In The Sky, I always think of that scene in Contact.  

Page  72   The sea of Galilee at nigh...

Page  82   I agree. Barry is a crappy person. Lol. Funny here would be if God only gave Barry a "darn minute", so Barry has to hurry or beg for more time. Just a few seconds, please!

Page  83   I think we actually need to see God. Barry spends way too much time at the DMV where we only hear God's voice. It's dull watching. Why not show him to us? I know the answer, but you might want to consider it. It's a moving pictures medium after all.

Page  89   Santa!

Page  95   Glasses, not classes



Thank you so much for the read and the detailed notes. A lot to think about there.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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eldave1
Posted: January 18th, 2019, 3:57pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Grandma Bear
Dave, finished your script. Sorry it took awhile. Sometimes if I'm busy I have to read just a few pages at the time.


Okay, home now and wanted to address some of the issues you raised. Read them on my phone at first so didn't have a chance to give full response (I type on phone one stroke at a time).


Quoted Text
So, your story here is a classic, he learned his lesson in the end. That works. That is not to say that this was a home run for me though. I thought the premise of Barry having to make religion fun in order to get more followers was a great one. Then it turns out that Barry finds out that was pretty much impossible, but he still gets a second chance at life because he makes Jesus laugh once at the end. Not the same thing. In other words, you didn't deliver on the premise, IMHO. Instead of making religion funny to attract more people, Barry quips occasional funny one-liners and occasionally does humorous things. None of which would attract new followers or believers. This was a bit of a letdown.


Yeah - this is a sticky widget. I shifted gears from the log line. I don't want him to achieve that goal - making the bible funny. I want him to change his character - I do see the promise of the premise problem with the log line. Will toy around with this.


Quoted Text
I also felt that I would've liked to see Barry try harder. Getting a second chance or a chance to go to heaven instead of hell is pretty serious, yet Barry doesn't take it seriously at all. He also seems too dense to get what Saint Peter and God are telling him. This makes him come off as stupid. Not in a good and charming way like Gump, but in roll-my-eyes kind of dumb. Add to that that he's not very likable and the middle was a bit slow for me as I didn't really care what happened to him.


The try harder part is a solid point. I think I can ramp this up - put a little more desperation in there as he continues to fail. Several folks have commented that Barry is too stupid. Going to have to take that to heart.

I don't think he can be likable per se as he is destined for hell. I do think there are spots where I can make him more empathetic. e.g., thinking of adding a shot where he is sobbing over an old wedding pic of him and Sharon at the same time the Reverend is looking at the pic of him and Sharon. Toying around with it.  


Quoted Text
Can't say I'm a big fan of Barry at this point. I hope he does something fairly soon that makes me empathize with him a little. Even if he's supposed to be a jerk and eventually change, I think it would be good if he can just do a little something to make me root for him soon.


See above - yes - got to find empathy somewhere.


Quoted Text
Page  11   George Lopez. I met him at a pitch fest in LA ten years ago. He was real nice and offered to read a friend of mine's comedy TV script.  


Love George!


Quoted Text
Would be funny if Barry tried to appeal too Sharon's soft spot by saying something like, He still talks about you (Booker).


Love this! Just added it to the script - thanks.


Quoted Text
Page  13   A drink on the bar stool on the stage reminded me of Dave Allen. Lol. Did you ever watch him? Maybe they all use that set-up nowadays. I wouldn't know since I never watch comedies. I like comedy, just like other stuff even more.


Never came across him - will have to check him out.


Quoted Text
Page  28   Barry, "then maybe I'd of read it.... Shouldn't that be have instead of, of?


Yep - good catch

Page  30   I think some of that dialogue in the previous pages could be trimmed some. You were doing good with the jokes and then it sort of petered out as it went along.


Quoted Text
Page  31   Would be cool if the three stooges scene was in black and white.


Like that

Quoted Text

Page  33   WOMEN...


Yep - good catch

Quoted Text

Dips "him" back into the river.


Yep - good catch


Quoted Text
Page  45   Just a thought. Shouldn't Barry prove to God that more people would be religious if the bible was funnier instead of trying to make God laugh?


Hmm. No - but, I think I could insert an interesting exchange in this regard somewhere since it's a relevant thought - does reading the bible make someone more religious??


Quoted Text
Page  50   Not being a religious person myself, my mind is starting to wander here a little bit, to be honest. Not sure what to offer up as suggestion, but it just seems as if old stuff is being regurgitated. I feel that maybe there needs to be something happening that is more about plot and not just talking to Jesus in the desert. Something needs to happen.


Food for thought for sure. There is a bit of rinse and repeat here.


Quoted Text
Page  60   We are now past the mid-point and I don't really sense anything in particular that has changed. Barry's objective was to make the bible more humorous, but instead, it just seems he ends up in places where he attempts a couple of jokes. It doesn't seem like he's really trying. Not even after God reminds him of this does he attempt to make things funny. Instead he says things that are funny to us the audience due to the situation he is in, but nothing that has to do with making the bible funnier. This sort of makes him come across dense and IMHO, of course, funny people are usually pretty smart.


Others have note this issue as well so - well, it's an issue.  I've got of got a Wizard of Oz approach to this in my mind for the next draft.  She - in a magical land - just wants to go home. But she picks up a great cast of B characters (Lion, Scarecrow, Tin man) along the way with their own goals. I think if I can find my Scarecrow et al for this one, I can develop Barry as more empathetic and add some curves to the plot line.  


Quoted Text
Page  61   On this page, this same thing is proven again. Peter has just told him that their faces are familiar, but they are not the same people as they are in our present time, still he goes up to Mary Magdalene and apologizes. I know he's drunk, but he just seems to be really stupid at this point.


I think the drunkenness explains the behavior - it may be prior stupidity that makes this too much.


Quoted Text
Page  72   The sea of Galilee at nigh...

Thanks - got it.


Quoted Text

Page  82   I agree. Barry is a crappy person. Lol. Funny here would be if God only gave Barry a "darn minute", so Barry has to hurry or beg for more time. Just a few seconds, please!


Like this


Quoted Text
Page  83   I think we actually need to see God. Barry spends way too much time at the DMV where we only hear God's voice. It's dull watching. Why not show him to us? I know the answer, but you might want to consider it. It's a moving pictures medium after all.


Going to stick with at as is - couple of folks have said they want to see him - I just can't pull the trigger on that.


Quoted Text
Page  95   Glasses, not classes


Got it - thanks

Again - much thanks for the read and the notes - a lot of food for thought in there.




My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Philostrate
Posted: January 21st, 2019, 5:21pm Report to Moderator
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Dave,

Just finished reading.

I wasn’t a fan of the title or the logline but I started reading and the script pulled me in and didn’t let go. It is very well-written and has a smooth pace. Lots of humor worked for me and I especially liked the irony in Barry’s death.

SPOILERS

My only gripe is that Barry’s change of heart at the end felt a bit unexpected.

Jesus and Barry form a relationship in the second half of the script, but I never felt like Barry would give away something precious for him for Jesus, not even at the end. So, when he self-sacrifices himself for him I didn't quite believe it. And it was a shame, because the arc of the character was there but, at the end, it felt a little off. It may have worked if Jesus had self-sacrificed himself before for Barry, so he then feels in debt with him or something and acts in the proper way… I don’t know… Just thinking out loud…

It was a great read, anyway.

Best of lucks with this one!


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eldave1
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Quoted from Philostrate
Dave,

Just finished reading.

I wasn’t a fan of the title or the logline but I started reading and the script pulled me in and didn’t let go. It is very well-written and has a smooth pace. Lots of humor worked for me and I especially liked the irony in Barry’s death.

SPOILERS

My only gripe is that Barry’s change of heart at the end felt a bit unexpected.

Jesus and Barry form a relationship in the second half of the script, but I never felt like Barry would give away something precious for him for Jesus, not even at the end. So, when he self-sacrifices himself for him I didn't quite believe it. And it was a shame, because the arc of the character was there but, at the end, it felt a little off. It may have worked if Jesus had self-sacrificed himself before for Barry, so he then feels in debt with him or something and acts in the proper way… I don’t know… Just thinking out loud…

It was a great read, anyway.

Best of lucks with this one!


Thanks for the read and the comments, friend.  I do have to work on the point you mentioned. It has been a hiccup for several peeps here.

Thanks again.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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khamanna
Posted: January 27th, 2019, 5:17am Report to Moderator
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Hi again, Dave.

Sorry to be late with the read, I've been on vacation, going far away lands and just finished this.
I read half of it on the plane, so, can't be accurate with the first half re page numbers etc.

Anyway, just want to say:
It's very witty, like extremely witty. It's funny too. I liked Barry. There's redeeming quality to him that makes him appealing - he loves his wife and wants to win her over. That makes him likable. At the same time he manages to piss the reader off - he's a fun little character. You drew all of them super well as always.

I'll stick to what I said about the beginning. It's a bit of disconnected I would say - Barry suddenly has to leave his dog for work. Why now? I don't get a clear sense of why now. That's what I was trying to say there about the first 30.

My gripe with the story is - I think on p86 is when Barry has sudden change of hearts. When he was later weeping for Jesus - I think you build well to that. But the first change reads kind of out of nowhere. Don't know - might be just me.

And another one for me is - the first half is a bit much of talk albeit extremely funny. Like conversation between Barry and Peter - I'd say shorten it. and that kind rings disbalance a bit. It gets more visual towards the end for me. But from p24 to  41 is more about them just walk and talk. I'm not saying to get rid of the talk as it's very funny, but maybe move it around.
Maybe Barry could be even more offensive - like meditation, teaching yoga (some silly suggestions just in case) singing gospels... I know he raps something later on - maybe it could be done earlier.

I also wish he conversed with Mary more. For some reason. Want a bit more romance in this. Or maybe he could confide in Peter about Sharon. I know he tells him about her at the end, how he cheated etc. But maybe at the beginning, he could mention that she was unfair to him only to accept his mistakes at the end. That would feel like better pay off I'd think.

Anyway, great work as always. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
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eldave1
Posted: January 27th, 2019, 11:27pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from khamanna
Hi again, Dave.

Sorry to be late with the read, I've been on vacation, going far away lands and just finished this.
I read half of it on the plane, so, can't be accurate with the first half re page numbers etc.



Quoted Text
I'll stick to what I said about the beginning. It's a bit of disconnected I would say - Barry suddenly has to leave his dog for work. Why now? I don't get a clear sense of why now. That's what I was trying to say there about the first 30.


I'll check the opening again - I thought it was clear - he got a surprise week long gig covering for a sick George Lopez. I'll check again.


Quoted Text
My gripe with the story is - I think on p86 is when Barry has sudden change of hearts. When he was later weeping for Jesus - I think you build well to that. But the first change reads kind of out of nowhere. Don't know - might be just me.


Not just you. A lot of peeps think the change is too sudden. I am going to address that in the next draft for sure.


Quoted Text
And another one for me is - the first half is a bit much of talk albeit extremely funny. Like conversation between Barry and Peter - I'd say shorten it. and that kind rings disbalance a bit. It gets more visual towards the end for me. But from p24 to  41 is more about them just walk and talk. I'm not saying to get rid of the talk as it's very funny, but maybe move it around.
Maybe Barry could be even more offensive - like meditation, teaching yoga (some silly suggestions just in case) singing gospels... I know he raps something later on - maybe it could be done earlier.


Interesting view - I'll take a look. One of the problems I have as that I am trying to stick with the actual chronology of Jesus' life - but point taken.


Quoted Text
I also wish he conversed with Mary more. For some reason. Want a bit more romance in this. Or maybe he could confide in Peter about Sharon. I know he tells him about her at the end, how he cheated etc. But maybe at the beginning, he could mention that she was unfair to him only to accept his mistakes at the end. That would feel like better pay off I'd think.


Will take a look.


Quoted Text
Anyway, great work as always. I thoroughly enjoyed it.


Thank you and thank you so much for weighing in.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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Philostrate
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Quoted Text
Thanks for the read and the comments, friend.  I do have to work on the point you mentioned. It has been a hiccup for several peeps here.

Thanks again.

Great read, Dave. My pleasure.



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khamanna
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Quoted from eldave1

Thank you and thank you so much for weighing in.


Sure, Dave, anytime. Will be waiting for the next one of yours.
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Andrew
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In for about 40 pages, but that's going to be it for me.

Not because the writing isn't good (you're a talented writer, no question), but the subject matter (religion, essentially) is just not my bag.

For example, I've always been a fan of Kevin Smith, and Chasing Amy is one of the underrated movies of the '90s, but give me Dogma, and I pass. Not quite sure what it is that leaves me to give this subject matter / genre a wide berth (I'm neither religious nor anti-religious); much the same way I do with fantasy. They're just the type of movies I need to be arm twisted into watching.

So I think it's important to preface my thoughts with that.

Right through to the point where Barry (with the dressing gown and demeanour, I assume this was a nod to The Duderino) passes away, I was on board. Even through to the passage with God. I was basically done at the point he is on a mission with Jesus. The writing is lean and economical, and there are some funny moments. Me checking out is a reflection of me rather than your script.

That's the beauty of film, of course; different people respond to different things. You can't please all of the people, all of the time.

There is absolutely an audience for this type of movie, and it's certainly plotted in those early pages attractively.

This is a personal feeling, but I feel that title will put some people off. I think you need something shorter and more accessible.

Good luck with it.


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eldave1
Posted: April 2nd, 2019, 3:49pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Andrew
In for about 40 pages, but that's going to be it for me.

Not because the writing isn't good (you're a talented writer, no question), but the subject matter (religion, essentially) is just not my bag.

For example, I've always been a fan of Kevin Smith, and Chasing Amy is one of the underrated movies of the '90s, but give me Dogma, and I pass. Not quite sure what it is that leaves me to give this subject matter / genre a wide berth (I'm neither religious nor anti-religious); much the same way I do with fantasy. They're just the type of movies I need to be arm twisted into watching.

So I think it's important to preface my thoughts with that.

Right through to the point where Barry (with the dressing gown and demeanour, I assume this was a nod to The Duderino) passes away, I was on board. Even through to the passage with God. I was basically done at the point he is on a mission with Jesus. The writing is lean and economical, and there are some funny moments. Me checking out is a reflection of me rather than your script.

That's the beauty of film, of course; different people respond to different things. You can't please all of the people, all of the time.

There is absolutely an audience for this type of movie, and it's certainly plotted in those early pages attractively.

This is a personal feeling, but I feel that title will put some people off. I think you need something shorter and more accessible.

Good luck with it.


Thanks for the read and your thoughts- appreciated.  Yes - this is the type of thing that won't be for everyone


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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JayF
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Hi David,

Went through the first 16 pages. Reads fast.

For your consideration, you might look at compressing the script before his death. "Kill your darlings?"

For example:
If his lawn was perfectly manicured, his mail collected, and to show him firing dog shit into his neighbour's pool? We ask...Why does he hate his neighbour? With a ratty lawn, it's not a stretch...he's an asshole. But, with a perfect lawn, it's something the neighbour did.

Eventually, he gets to the Comedy Club and then talks about something that we (the audience) are already aware of...Kill all of the expositional dialogue he has with the neighbours, his ex, in jail, his lawyer about his ex and only present it during his comedy routine.

Then we go...OH, THAT'S why he's firing dog shit into his neighbour's pool. And if he ends his routine with "...So I fired dogshit in their pool." Which, from the patrons of the Comedy Club would be funny and outrageous, that they would think it's just a comedy bit, that's it's not true, but we (the movie audience) knows that it's something that is truly painful to him. His external self vs. his internal self.

Funny stuff, though. Will continue on with it and send further if you would like.

Keep at it.

Cheers.
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eldave1
Posted: April 2nd, 2019, 6:32pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JayF
Hi David,

Went through the first 16 pages. Reads fast.

For your consideration, you might look at compressing the script before his death. "Kill your darlings?"

For example:
If his lawn was perfectly manicured, his mail collected, and to show him firing dog shit into his neighbour's pool? We ask...Why does he hate his neighbour? With a ratty lawn, it's not a stretch...he's an asshole. But, with a perfect lawn, it's something the neighbour did.

Eventually, he gets to the Comedy Club and then talks about something that we (the audience) are already aware of...Kill all of the expositional dialogue he has with the neighbours, his ex, in jail, his lawyer about his ex and only present it during his comedy routine.

Then we go...OH, THAT'S why he's firing dog shit into his neighbour's pool. And if he ends his routine with "...So I fired dogshit in their pool." Which, from the patrons of the Comedy Club would be funny and outrageous, that they would think it's just a comedy bit, that's it's not true, but we (the movie audience) knows that it's something that is truly painful to him. His external self vs. his internal self.

Funny stuff, though. Will continue on with it and send further if you would like.

Keep at it.

Cheers.


Thanks,  mate. Good notes.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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JayF
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Hi David,

Finished up the script, so my thoughts....?

What is missing is a consistent story spine and structure. The scenes seem episodic as there is minimal connective tissue between them. Maybe your sensing that as well? It's funny, the scenes are funny, but don't move the story forward...it's just Barry cracking jokes.

Consider having him go back to Sunday School.

If I may...?

Barry, a funny, foul-mouthed, blasphemous comedian. Does drugs, snorts coke, and has a heart attack on stage.
Goes to heaven and fails the DMV exam. He is given a choice, go to hell or go to Sunday School. (He was forced to go and hated Sunday School as a kid, so that's why he hates religion...)
He says okay to Sunday School, thinking its in a church classroom. But, to his surprise, he is literally living in the Bible stories alongside Jesus. Which takes him into all of those stories and his comedy.
(Take out all the back and forth to heaven stuff, keep him in the Bible world until the end.)
Throughout his 'living' beside Jesus, he learns the lessons that Jesus teaches and recognizes the errors of his ways of his life on earth. Leading to his redemption and change of heart.
Finish up with him waking up in the hospital and finding even greater success in his life (on Earth) by giving and getting forgiveness from his ex and living a cleaner life.


And, just for the record, I am not religious. And that is a movie that I would watch.

Cheers.
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eldave1
Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 7:20pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from JayF
Hi David,

Finished up the script, so my thoughts....?

What is missing is a consistent story spine and structure. The scenes seem episodic as there is minimal connective tissue between them. Maybe your sensing that as well? It's funny, the scenes are funny, but don't move the story forward...it's just Barry cracking jokes.

Consider having him go back to Sunday School.

If I may...?

Barry, a funny, foul-mouthed, blasphemous comedian. Does drugs, snorts coke, and has a heart attack on stage.
Goes to heaven and fails the DMV exam. He is given a choice, go to hell or go to Sunday School. (He was forced to go and hated Sunday School as a kid, so that's why he hates religion...)
He says okay to Sunday School, thinking its in a church classroom. But, to his surprise, he is literally living in the Bible stories alongside Jesus. Which takes him into all of those stories and his comedy.
(Take out all the back and forth to heaven stuff, keep him in the Bible world until the end.)
Throughout his 'living' beside Jesus, he learns the lessons that Jesus teaches and recognizes the errors of his ways of his life on earth. Leading to his redemption and change of heart.
Finish up with him waking up in the hospital and finding even greater success in his life (on Earth) by giving and getting forgiveness from his ex and living a cleaner life.


And, just for the record, I am not religious. And that is a movie that I would watch.

Cheers.


Thanks.  Jay. A lot of good thoughts to consider there. Appreciated.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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CrackedAces
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David, I took a glance at your script.  Very well written.  But may I be nit-picky on the POV shot on page 2.

BARRY’S POV

A row of tall CYPRESS TREES, densely packed, on the neighbor
side of Barry’s cinder block wall rise twenty feet in the air
- a green fortress.

BACK TO SCENE

Why NOT just say: Barry’s view of a row of tall  . . .  . .
And strike the POV and the BACK TO SCENE.

As this would also save four lines.

Steve






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eldave1
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Quoted from CrackedAces
David, I took a glance at your script.  Very well written.  But may I be nit-picky on the POV shot on page 2.

BARRY’S POV

A row of tall CYPRESS TREES, densely packed, on the neighbor
side of Barry’s cinder block wall rise twenty feet in the air
- a green fortress.

BACK TO SCENE

Why NOT just say: Barry’s view of a row of tall  . . .  . .
And strike the POV and the BACK TO SCENE.

As this would also save four lines.

Steve




Excellent suggestion - thanks, mate


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StevenClark
Posted: April 18th, 2019, 5:41pm Report to Moderator
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As a comedian just recently died on stage, in Europe I believe, this suddenly becomes very topical.


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HyperMatt
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Quoted from StevenClark
As a comedian just recently died on stage, in Europe I believe, this suddenly becomes very topical.


And they thought his death was part of the act.

Just like Tommy Cooper and (I think) Sid James before him.


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eldave1
Posted: April 18th, 2019, 6:45pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from StevenClark
As a comedian just recently died on stage, in Europe I believe, this suddenly becomes very topical.


Interesting.  Buzz


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stampede331
Posted: April 17th, 2020, 9:01pm Report to Moderator
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I'm on page 44.  I'm curious: how many drafts did this undergo?  Would you revise as you wrote and then once a segment was complete, it was complete, or did you reread and revise the script several time?  Barry comes off to me as a mixture of Peter Griffin, when he's being a bit lazy, and Hank Moody, when he's being clever.  I am enjoying the script even though I am bible illiterate.  Thanks for taking the time to assist my screenplay on the Doubles board.
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eldave1
Posted: April 17th, 2020, 10:29pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from stampede331
I'm on page 44.  I'm curious: how many drafts did this undergo?  Would you revise as you wrote and then once a segment was complete, it was complete, or did you reread and revise the script several time?  Barry comes off to me as a mixture of Peter Griffin, when he's being a bit lazy, and Hank Moody, when he's being clever.  I am enjoying the script even though I am bible illiterate.  Thanks for taking the time to assist my screenplay on the Doubles board.


I'm on my third draft of this - I revise as I write - try to blow out some stuff on the pages and then get back to it later


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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stampede331
Posted: April 21st, 2020, 2:08pm Report to Moderator
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Up to page 71 now.  Now I'm kinda reminded of early Woody Allen, like Bananas era, sort of mumbling the jokes under his breath and continually being reprimanded for the sin of blasphemy.  Is early Woody Allen the character you are going for?  I'm curious if I'm envisioning what you were thinking.

If I had to guess right now, I'm guessing Barry fails in his task to make the Bible funny, which an omnipotent God knows is already the inevitable.  However, in his journey to make humor from the Bible, he finds how to genuinely repent for his sins, which is what God seeks the whole time.  We'll see if I'm right.

Love the George Harrison and Norman Greenbaum references.  Perfect for the tone of the script
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stampede331
Posted: April 21st, 2020, 2:51pm Report to Moderator
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Alright, I finished.  This script moves like a breeze.  I actually felt like I was Barry, floating through it because of how smoothly the scripts. is written.  There are times where I thought Barry got away too easy, but then I thought the tone would have to shift radically for Barry to be tested more thoroughly.  I'm not Christian and I'm not religious.  That said, I can't imagine anybody is unfamiliar with the main biblical stories you walked us through.  Thanks for sticking with the less esoteric stories from the Bible.  

One question that I have: how come Barry feels like Jesus is in true peril when he already knows Jesus is the son of God during the last supper.  Does Barry not know that he's walking through the stories of the Bible to learn messages?  Does he believe in this dreamlike/near death state that he is experiencing the here and now?  This is the one point of confusion for me.

Enjoyed the read.
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eldave1
Posted: April 21st, 2020, 3:20pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from stampede331
Alright, I finished.  This script moves like a breeze.  I actually felt like I was Barry, floating through it because of how smoothly the scripts. is written.  There are times where I thought Barry got away too easy, but then I thought the tone would have to shift radically for Barry to be tested more thoroughly.  I'm not Christian and I'm not religious.  That said, I can't imagine anybody is unfamiliar with the main biblical stories you walked us through.  Thanks for sticking with the less esoteric stories from the Bible.  

One question that I have: how come Barry feels like Jesus is in true peril when he already knows Jesus is the son of God during the last supper.  Does Barry not know that he's walking through the stories of the Bible to learn messages?  Does he believe in this dreamlike/near death state that he is experiencing the here and now?  This is the one point of confusion for me.

Enjoyed the read.


Thanks for checking this out, mate - glad you enjoyed it.  It was an interesting tackle for me since I am an atheist - to answer your true peril question - yes, that does stick out since he knows it is coming - the point I was trying to get across is that he only knew that academically, since he lived his live as an atheist he never  really experienced the weight of that until that moment - as I am writing this it seems that might be a could thing to add to the script. Thanks again!


My Scripts can all be seen here:

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ajr
Posted: April 26th, 2020, 7:06pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Dave,

So congratulations once again - it's a marvel that you can put together so many feature scripts so competently, and on a variety of subjects.

I had a special interest in this one since religion is subject I like to imbue in my scripts as well.

Just finished the read so my notes will be random, and I wanted to comment before I read the others' notes - starting with what I thought worked really well:

I really liked the fact that part of Barry's redemption was more about saying goodbye to Sharon than about winning her back.

I thought the self-sacrifice of Barry, where he does not want to see Jesus die, was very well executed. I felt that emotion. That is where the script lives, for me.

Barry comes off as a bit of a hack comedian - so much so that his plagiarism is a running joke, and while it just had started to become tedious, when you steer into the skid at the end and have Barry do it line after line and have Peter call him out on it, it did start to become funny.

I get the fact that writing a comedian is hard. It's something I would never attempt to do. Because not only do you have to write an entire script, you have to create a person with an act, and a history of acts. You have to write comedy routines, and if it was easy, we'd all be doing it, and performing on stage to guffaws. So I get that it's easier to make him a hack who steals.

But in the age of social media, hacks are exposed quickly. And you have Barry as a successful comedian, having done, or ready to do, an HBO special. Perhaps standup shouldn't be his profession? What about giving Barry a show, similar to what John Oliver and Samantha Bee do? This way he can rail on without the worry of whether he's funny or not, he just has to be clever and biting. And his target, instead of politics could be religion. And perhaps he doesn't take on the easy fodder, the kid touching and such, but concentrates on the institution at large - whether the church should be taxed, the ridiculousness of the Catholic dogma and the fervency to which some follow it, etc.

And dying on stage - yes, I realize you'd lose that. But it's a bit of a trope. And it's actually happened in real life. He can die during a taping just as well in front of a live audience?

I think with this approach, you preserve what for me is the heart of the story. For Barry, religion is just words in an ancient book. However, when you LIVE those words - it changes your perspective. This is the movie where you show Christians how un-Christian-like they are, by showing them how much they are NOT like Jesus.

So this takes me to a couple of other points - one, the logline, similar to STEP SEVEN, threw me for a loop. We expect a flat-out slapstick irreverent comedy, once you tell us that a comedian has accepted the charge from God to make the Bible funny. That line really messed up my expectations as I read this. One, why would God need more followers? In other words, Barry does not have something God needs. Two, the Bible is the Bible, no one is rewriting it, are they?

Which takes me to the ending... because all along, I knew it was a dream, so I read the script as if it was a dream. If you do that, then you have to say to yourself - this is a manifestation of Barry's mind. Saint Peter's constant berating is Barry's own self-loathing, which makes some sense. But then, you have Barry exhibiting an almost encyclopedic knowledge of scripture. It's cool if he knows the stories, but the literal quotes, if in fact Barry is dreaming this, is a stretch. He would have had to study quite a bit and then reject all things Catholic.

But then you turn it on us - you have Barry swear that it actually happened, ala The Wizard of Oz... and then you have Sharon confirm it. Which takes you off the hook about Barry's knowledge of the Bible, and suggests that he was actually taught the lessons from a divine place... but which takes me back to the original premise - why would God grant him this journey? I guess I felt that you should have chosen one way or the other, and not have it morph, or be revealed, in the denouement. Not sure I'm explaining this correctly.

Also, Barry is very passive on this journey. He walks along with Christ, and things happen to Christ, and Barry reacts. It's what would happen if any of us "modern humans" were present during these events. None of it feels intrinsic to Barry, if that makes any sense. And you tackle two very well-known scenes - the Sermon on the Mount and the stoning of the prostitute, and I don't think anything unique was added. For me, this script in parts strayed very close to THE INVENTION OF LYING, but more so to LIFE OF BRIAN, which I revere as the greatest cinematic achievement in history. I can do 80 pages on why that movie is great, but #1 is because they did not attack religion, they attacked the fervency in which some people FOLLOW religion. And the Sermon and the stoning scenes are two of the funniest things ever filmed. So if you're going to go there, it has to be different, and done with reverence (to the Pythons).

So for me, this was written as big-budget PG-13, and it should be written more as an Adam Sandler dramedy lower-budget hard R. Really lean in to Barry as irredeemable. BUT give us the reason. Spend more time with him up front. Because right now all we know about him is that he's a creepy lout. And along the way he becomes sorry for being one, mostly because he hurt his wife. Let us know WHY he was a jerk, and the scenes will resonate more. Did he have a domineering father? Did he grow up in the movie HEAVEN HELP US? (I did, and it seriously effed me up.) You spend 10-12 pages doing the dog poop cannon and going to jail stuff instead of feeding us who Barry IS. Does he want Sharon to move away? If he wants her back, the poop thing doesn't make any sense. And if she's too close, and he wants to forget her? All he had to do was move, like he did 100 pages later.

And just a couple of random notes as I flipped through - script is really clean, btw -

p. 68 - should be "resonate"
p. 95 - no one but the readers would ever know this because he's not addressed in the script, but you have PAUL THE APOSTLE saying "who Lord?" Saul of Tarses was not one of Jesus' original 12.
In the last scenes, LOWENSTEIN changes to DAVID.

I find this subject matter fascinating, so thank you for writing this. Interested to see where it goes from here. Best of luck!

AJR


Click HERE to read JOHN LENNON'S HEAVEN https://preview.tinyurl.com/John-Lennon-s-Heaven-110-pgs/
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eldave1
Posted: April 26th, 2020, 9:32pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from ajr
Hey Dave,

So congratulations once again - it's a marvel that you can put together so many feature scripts so competently, and on a variety of subjects.
AJR


Thannks, bud - appreciated.


Quoted Text
Barry comes off as a bit of a hack comedian - so much so that his plagiarism is a running joke, and while it just had started to become tedious, when you steer into the skid at the end and have Barry do it line after line and have Peter call him out on it, it did start to become funny.


Interesting you should mention - looking to cut down on the plagiarism angle in the next draft. Just a bit - you know, going to one well too often.


Quoted Text
I get the fact that writing a comedian is hard. It's something I would never attempt to do. Because not only do you have to write an entire script, you have to create a person with an act, and a history of acts. You have to write comedy routines, and if it was easy, we'd all be doing it, and performing on stage to guffaws. So I get that it's easier to make him a hack who steals.

But in the age of social media, hacks are exposed quickly. And you have Barry as a successful comedian, having done, or ready to do, an HBO special. Perhaps standup shouldn't be his profession? What about giving Barry a show, similar to what John Oliver and Samantha Bee do? This way he can rail on without the worry of whether he's funny or not, he just has to be clever and biting. And his target, instead of politics could be religion. And perhaps he doesn't take on the easy fodder, the kid touching and such, but concentrates on the institution at large - whether the church should be taxed, the ridiculousness of the Catholic dogma and the fervency to which some follow it, etc.


That's an interesting take - That being said, I have to keep him under the level of being too successful - known. i.e., He can't be Jon Stewart level - more of a d-list celebrity type.  So, while I appreciate that idea - not quite sure it works in terms of keeping his status (or lack thereof).  Let me mull it over.


Quoted Text
So this takes me to a couple of other points - one, the logline, similar to STEP SEVEN, threw me for a loop. We expect a flat-out slapstick irreverent comedy, once you tell us that a comedian has accepted the charge from God to make the Bible funny. That line really messed up my expectations as I read this. One, why would God need more followers? In other words, Barry does not have something God needs. Two, the Bible is the Bible, no one is rewriting it, are they?


That's a good point on the logline. I think I need to add a bit of the twist to it - i.e., a comedian that mistakenly believes he is on a mission to...is instead....


Quoted Text
Which takes me to the ending... because all along, I knew it was a dream, so I read the script as if it was a dream. If you do that, then you have to say to yourself - this is a manifestation of Barry's mind. Saint Peter's constant berating is Barry's own self-loathing, which makes some sense. But then, you have Barry exhibiting an almost encyclopedic knowledge of scripture. It's cool if he knows the stories, but the literal quotes, if in fact Barry is dreaming this, is a stretch. He would have had to study quite a bit and then reject all things Catholic.


I'm a bit lost on the point here - I think Barry generally demonstrates that he is an idiot when it comes to the Bible other than the basic premises that are drilled into us in Catechism - e.g., baptism, etc.


Quoted Text
But then you turn it on us - you have Barry swear that it actually happened, ala The Wizard of Oz... and then you have Sharon confirm it. Which takes you off the hook about Barry's knowledge of the Bible, and suggests that he was actually taught the lessons from a divine place... but which takes me back to the original premise - why would God grant him this journey? I guess I felt that you should have chosen one way or the other, and not have it morph, or be revealed, in the denouement. Not sure I'm explaining this correctly.


I get that - I take your point here. I think I have to pick my poison. Good note.


Quoted Text
Also, Barry is very passive on this journey. He walks along with Christ, and things happen to Christ, and Barry reacts. It's what would happen if any of us "modern humans" were present during these events. None of it feels intrinsic to Barry, if that makes any sense. And you tackle two very well-known scenes - the Sermon on the Mount and the stoning of the prostitute, and I don't think anything unique was added. For me, this script in parts strayed very close to THE INVENTION OF LYING, but more so to LIFE OF BRIAN, which I revere as the greatest cinematic achievement in history. I can do 80 pages on why that movie is great, but #1 is because they did not attack religion, they attacked the fervency in which some people FOLLOW religion. And the Sermon and the stoning scenes are two of the funniest things ever filmed. So if you're going to go there, it has to be different, and done with reverence (to the Pythons).


I somewhat understand the passive part here - others have chimed in similar - I am torn because I want him to be lazy and passive = lazy.  Not sure why I understand the Life of Brian reference - I don't see the scenes as the same.


Quoted Text
So for me, this was written as big-budget PG-13, and it should be written more as an Adam Sandler dramedy lower-budget hard R. Really lean in to Barry as irredeemable. BUT give us the reason. Spend more time with him up front. Because right now all we know about him is that he's a creepy lout. And along the way he becomes sorry for being one, mostly because he hurt his wife. Let us know WHY he was a jerk, and the scenes will resonate more. Did he have a domineering father? Did he grow up in the movie HEAVEN HELP US? (I did, and it seriously effed me up.) You spend 10-12 pages doing the dog poop cannon and going to jail stuff instead of feeding us who Barry IS. Does he want Sharon to move away? If he wants her back, the poop thing doesn't make any sense. And if she's too close, and he wants to forget her? All he had to do was move, like he did 100 pages later.


I actually want more Ricky Gervais and less Sandler.  I like some of the ideas here on Barry's back story.


Quoted Text
p. 68 - should be "resonate"

p. 95 - no one but the readers would ever know this because he's not addressed in the script, but you have PAUL THE APOSTLE saying "who Lord?" Saul of Tarses was not one of Jesus' original 12.

In the last scenes, LOWENSTEIN changes to DAVID.


Got it - thanks


Quoted Text
I find this subject matter fascinating, so thank you for writing this. Interested to see where it goes from here. Best of luck!

AJR


Thanks a ton, Anthony - much appreciated.  I entered it in three contests last year and got pretty close - two finalists and a quarter.

So - it at least made a cut in all three - I made some revisions since then - I think I have another couple swipes left in me and these notes will help in that journey


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts

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eldave1  -  April 26th, 2020, 10:03pm
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ajr
Posted: April 28th, 2020, 7:30pm Report to Moderator
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My pleasure - just to clarify, I probably mislead you with the Sandler comparison - I don't think he should be the archetype for Barry, I was more talking about the kind of films he's started to make lately, where he moved away from the slapstick and the over-the-top stuff and added more gravitas... and curiously, I did not get Gervais when I read this - it was more Jim Jeffries for me... was that ever in your head when you wrote him?

Again, liked what you did with Jesus. You didn't write him as a revolutionary or a fire and brimstone preacher, you wrote him as a Rabbi, which was quite refreshing.

AJR


Click HERE to read JOHN LENNON'S HEAVEN https://preview.tinyurl.com/John-Lennon-s-Heaven-110-pgs/
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eldave1
Posted: April 28th, 2020, 7:55pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from ajr
My pleasure - just to clarify, I probably mislead you with the Sandler comparison - I don't think he should be the archetype for Barry, I was more talking about the kind of films he's started to make lately, where he moved away from the slapstick and the over-the-top stuff and added more gravitas... and curiously, I did not get Gervais when I read this - it was more Jim Jeffries for me... was that ever in your head when you wrote him?

Again, liked what you did with Jesus. You didn't write him as a revolutionary or a fire and brimstone preacher, you wrote him as a Rabbi, which was quite refreshing.

AJR


Got it - thanks again for the read - good stuff to consider.


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Geezis
Posted: April 29th, 2020, 9:33am Report to Moderator
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Finally got around to reading this and have to say I liked it. A lot.

I loved the interplay between Barry and Peter and the dialogue with Barry and God.

I didn't like Barry as a character but I suppose that was the point, he had to find redemption and become less annoying at the end.

For me, and only because it's what I would have liked to have seen, is a comedian counterpart to Barry in biblical times, someone who was funny and left Barry questioning his own ability to be funny. Not a criticism, just a wish.

Well done Dave, a funny, mature and emotional read.

I have read all the posts in this thread but if it hasn't been mentioned before then I saw Paul Giamatti playing Barry. I just think he's a great actor.


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eldave1
Posted: April 29th, 2020, 12:39pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Geezis
Finally got around to reading this and have to say I liked it. A lot.

I loved the interplay between Barry and Peter and the dialogue with Barry and God.

I didn't like Barry as a character but I suppose that was the point, he had to find redemption and become less annoying at the end.

For me, and only because it's what I would have liked to have seen, is a comedian counterpart to Barry in biblical times, someone who was funny and left Barry questioning his own ability to be funny. Not a criticism, just a wish.

Well done Dave, a funny, mature and emotional read.

I have read all the posts in this thread but if it hasn't been mentioned before then I saw Paul Giamatti playing Barry. I just think he's a great actor.


Finally a review from "Geezis" himself

Thanks. bud - glad you enjoyed it.  The counterpart idea is an interesting one - will surely put that in the hopper. Thanks much.



My Scripts can all be seen here:

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Robert Timsah
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I'm 12 pages in, and generally I find it readable and well structured. I admire anyone who takes a crack at a full length comedy. Couple o' notes, don't kill me, they're sort of nits.


Quoted Text

Oh - yeah. I need you to go to the
store and get some dog food too.
This is the brand he likes.


Comedy is such a bitch to write, but I think it'd help a lot if it were done quicker and with less words?


Quoted Text
BARRY
Booker - can you feed him while I'm gone?

She just stares at him, blinking in amazement at his audacity.

BARRY
(raises empty bag up)
"This is the what you need to buy". (LOL)

SHARON
"No".

She starts closing the door.

BARRY
He still talks about you..

SHARON
(holds the door)
Then tell him I'm allergic to him! (now she's getting in on the sarcasm)

BARRY
(Pauses)
I thought your immune system would adapt..


We also get the added bonus of pissing off the parenthetical police at the same time. Anyway, I'll keep reading but it'll take me awhile because I wear my mask while I read (alone) and it reduces my oxygen levels.


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eldave1
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Quoted from Robert Timsah
I'm 12 pages in, and generally I find it readable and well structured. I admire anyone who takes a crack at a full length comedy. Couple o' notes, don't kill me, they're sort of nits.



Comedy is such a bitch to write, but I think it'd help a lot if it were done quicker and with less words?



We also get the added bonus of pissing off the parenthetical police at the same time. Anyway, I'll keep reading but it'll take me awhile because I wear my mask while I read (alone) and it reduces my oxygen levels.


Hey, mate - thanks for the note - appreciate it.

Careful of that mask - don't want to get oxygen deprived.


My Scripts can all be seen here:

http://dlambertson.wix.com/scripts
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