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I forgot to add that the killing of his wife by the creature is his motive for becoming the new Welder, the reason he wants to kill the creature. So you have the irony of these flashbacks being a possible motivation for wanting to save the girl, and then ironically being a reason to want to kill her later.
Just seems kind of coincidental that the creature who kills his wife later becomes so closely encountered. Might be acceptable though. Then the only thing I would change is have him know the name of the road he is on, since he would have to be a local. I guess that creates a problem of the police showing up. so maybe just kill the cell phone, have there be no service.
I'll give you this much, you got me to fully reread the entire script. Taut writing, crisp visuals, effective dialogue and an eye for detail.
My spidey sense was tingling as Lark and Walden were back to back. Something's amiss, she knows his name. Why does Welder stay silent? Welder goes to the window earlier but not for the reason we think. It's not because he "hears an intruder", he's expecting Walden, cute. As the ending played out, it hit me where I've seen seen this before.
"Timecrimes". http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0480669/ The 2008 Spanish time loop thriller. Right down to the cryptic flashbacks of his wife in mysterious peril. And then I was reminded of "Triangle". http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1187064/ In both films the protag pursues a masked antag, only to discover, its themselves. As both stories unfold, the protags descend into chaos and fulfill the time loops.
I'm all for established properties inspiring new stories, that can work out fine. My last short did that very thing to take a new spin on an old ride. However, I don't think it works quite as well when the concept is reversed. To borrow liberally from another source for your ending, doesn't have the same effect. It left me feeling flat after all the expertise you drilled into the script.
I don't claim to have everything figured out in this intensely labyrinthine tale. But I do know my enjoyment was diminished by it invoking two feature films. If that's not the case, I'd be shocked and apologize, the resemblances are striking.
In the end, I wonder if the script needed the loop at all. I was immersed in your craft without all the fancypants timey whimey light show. There's a lot of talent on display here, no doubt, you got some serious chops. Ultimately, I felt like the kid that peeks behind the curtain and ruins the magic.
I respect the talent and effort, just wish I hand't seen those films first.
LATEST NEWS CineVita Films is producing a short based on my new feature!
CAPTIVE * I liked this one too * weird time flow * lighting a match as a way to ca1m down - never heard of that one before * clever naming of Walden and Welder * Larkís role was nicely done * unclear as to what myth this was based on though * this script walked a fine line between clarity and confusion.
Excellent writing, great atmosphere, I think one of the best I've read so far.
I do have a few things that stuck out to me though. Walden's flash backs felt a little unnecessary, we see it is the monster that killed his wife, but he himself does not seem to engage that, so emotionally I felt it didn't pay off.
Why did Welder stab Walden?, makes him seem pretty evil
I wish I could say I enjoyed this as much as some of the others, but unfortunately I can't. Maybe I'm just not seeing all the connections, but to me this was a story that became overly complicated. The flashbacks seem unnecessary and I'm curious to find out what the author's intentions were with them. I couldn't figure out when they were actually happening. That same day? Far in the past? I assumed it was recent because Walden stumbled across the body of his wife, eaten by the creature. But, how that figures into the circular nature of the plot, I don't know. Another poster mentioned the significance of the dagger and I look forward to that explanation as well. The final sentence:
"Walden grabs the dagger off the passenger seat, gets out..."
Puzzled me. Was Walden the driver of the blue car or did that mean Walden, now the Welder, reached into the car and took the dagger? And how did that dagger get into the car? Seemed like a slug line was missing there.
All that being said, this was an extremely ambitious story. You can tell real effort was put into the characters and the dialogue. The structure is clever and intricate, but I just didn't buy the time loop at the end. In my mind, there were too many unexplained loose ends. I haven't seen the movies Brett mentioned, so maybe watching them would help illuminate the plot of this script.
But, you obviously struck a chord with some readers, so congrats on that. Very well done for a week's time.
I think it was too convenient though - Walden sees Welder hunting Lark, the creature and then Welder gets a hold of Walden and takes him to his house (apparently Walden saw Welder near his house) where the creature ate his love. "eating Jessica" was a bit convenient. Why Welder didn't kill Lark in the first place when he could? --this bothers me too.
The rest of it was clear. I really liked the pacing of this, very nicely done. Flashbacks didn't bother at all and came at the right places. ANd I liked the transitions too, overall it has an amazing flow.
This was a story crafted by an experieced writer. Very professional and certainly knows their way around a script. A few little things were out of place. Don't know if have ever done some welding, but it's impossible to see through the glass on a welder mask. I thought this might be the newer LCD type that auto dims, but when you said it was blacked out and his eyes were visible, I was confused. Why the plastic apron with the rest of the leather welding gear? Didn't understand how the girl had put a hand print on the rear windscreen only to pulled out of the van in sack? I know, I'm nit picking. Overall, very enjoyable. Great job on completing the OWC.
The story made much more sense to me today when I read with a clear head...if I got it right now! The flashbacks are mostly needed to give Walden the necessary motive to attack the creature at the end...to become the new Welder. They serve to humanize him perhaps, and encourage his heroic protectiveness of Lard, but those were just bonus elements. The real need for the flashback comes from fact that there needs to be a reason for Walden to dawn the mask and chase the creature.
It's a great effort, probably the best of the challenge I think. The flashback might present a problem. It seems necessary, and yet it tends to confuse. I think this would be the case with a film too, perhaps even more so. Prodding the reader/viewer to try to figure things like this out is good, gives the story depth. Question is if this goes too far, or could be made a smidge clearer.
OK...read this and then read all the feedback and felt like I must have missed something. Skimmed over it again, and came to the conclusion that it wasn't me who was missing anything, but everyone else. We'll see when things are revealed.
First things first...this is well written for the most part. Not great by any means, but very solid, especially compared to the vast majority of OWC entries, and actually, even compared to most SS shorts in general, so Kudos!
I think I know who wrote this, and if I'm right, this is leaps and bounds above what "he" has churned out up till now, so again, Kudos, if I'm correct. I'm basing my assumptions on a few things...the action sequences (which are pretty good, but not quite there, IMO) and the way that the "generic" cars were given colors. Again, we'll have to wait and see.
So, for me, this isn't anything to do with merging time lines or the like. Other than the incorrectly not labeled Flashbacks, this all plays out just like it appears to. Not sure why everyone feels differently.
I see this as a pretty generic/standard torture porn slasher type short, melded with some sort of creature Celtic myth in Lark. It all works OK and again, is written pretty damn well, so I applaud you, but I do have issues that don't jive at all for me..but again, maybe I'm missing something.
Let's go back to those Flashbacks that aren't labeled. It's something that irritates me. If a scene is a Flashback or dream, it needs to be labeled as such. No way around it. If you're trying to fuck with your reader, I understand, but there really isn't any reason to do so. It makes things unfairly confusing. So, if these are indeed Flashbacks, you need to come out and tell us.
What Lark is, is a mystery to me. I'm not going to go back and look at all the various options we had to work with, but let's assume she's some sort of evil creature that likes to eat the entrails of the living. She may be small, but she's obviously very formidable...so...I have an issue with the whole setup. For some reason, she let this Welder dude grab her, tie her up, stab her, etc., before killing him and eating his innards. Why? Why then also attack Walden? And why couldn't she overcome Walden?
The whole Welder thing is both good and bad, IMO. It's a cliche character that we've seen in various forms in thousands of movies. Nothing inherently wrong with that, but for a short that runs along typical torture porn themes, IMO, we need reasoning, as well as strong characters and I don't see either here.
So, in the end, Walden subdues Lark, but she escapes, and he decides to don the Welder suit and mask and do what? Start a killing spree of his own? I don't know...it doesn't fly with me, but maybe I am actually missing something here.
Looking forward to the reveal and some clarification.
Whatever the deal turns out to be, this is a solid, thought provoking OWC entry and one of the better ones for sure. Strong writing, lots going on, and you seem to have hit a nerve of interest in the masses here. Congrats on that!
To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
Dream, I think I missed the boat on this last night but figured it out today enough to answer your questions, some of them anyway. Walden, at the end, does not set on a killing spree. He sets out to kill Lark, and just Lark, who had killed his wife. Presumably something similar had happened to original Welder. So while we think he is the villain, in a way he is not.
The flashbacks really are just to set up a motive for why Walden goes after Lark at the end. Without them, he would just call the cops or something.
What the creature is, I have no idea. It may be that this story was in the head of the writer a while and he adapted it to the contest. No idea. If it is one of the creatures from the list, the writer can maybe expand on that a little in the rewrite.
A lingering problem is how this creature is both powerful and helpless at the same time. I can't answer that one, and it troubled me. Best I can come up with is that it is some kind of clawed creature, not that strong, but capable of gutting someone. The shapeshifting aspect is even harder to match to the story.
These are just my interpretations. Could be wrong.
The idea of the girl in the woods, the guy with the heavy apron and the mask is certainly cliche. But at least a new twist was added, or the attempt was made.
I have read all of the stories in the challenge, and in my amateur opinion they all have flaws. I guess it's a matter of which stories can have the flaws fixed without too much trouble.
You may be right, and I understand that...but...let's be real for a sec here...
Old Walden wasn't written as a very formidable guy, IMO, He took a hammer to the head, a big knife stab and twist to the thigh, and then I think he was bitten and attacked by Lark. All potential life ending things. If he's in survival mode, I can suspend disbelief with the best of them, but to don the Welder's suit and go after Lark just doesn't work, IMO. It's one of those tacked on endings that we see all too much in horror and for me, takes away from the res of the script.
To ski or not to ski...that's not even a question.
This is a solid horror story thatís well written. For me Iíd like to get some wider sense of meaning from it, however I realized I might be asking for something the genre doesnít require.
These are notes I made as I read:
Pg 1 Ė Itís a good energetic start.
Pg 5 Ė The story has moved along well. For some reason Iím not quite engaged with it, I suspect itís because the stakes seem to be limited to these charactersí lives which means we really have to care for them.
Pg 9 Ė The action and horror works well. Iím still wondering what the purpose or wider stakes will turn out to be.
Pg 12 Ė I like the altered positions of the ending, although Iím a bit confused on what it means. Perhaps Iím supposed to be.
I can suspend disbelief with the best of them, but to don the Welder's suit and go after Lark just doesn't work, IMO. It's one of those tacked on endings that we see all too much in horror and for me, takes away from the res of the script.
It's foreshadowed through the whole script. It doesn't suddenly happen.
Pop - The phi Pop are fearsome ghosts from Thai folklore. They can possess a human being and feed on the intestines. They can be expelled by a spirit doctor who performs a "whirlpool dance." The ghost, watching the dance, is sucked into the whirlpool and is thus removed from the body. The legend of this ghost originated with a prince who found a magical way to enter the body of another living person or animal. When he performed this feat and entered the body of an animal, his servant, who had been listening to the magic words, repeated the incantation and entered the body of the prince. The prince, unable to return to his own body, transferred to that of a bird and flew to his wife to tell her what had happened. She immediately had the servant's body destroyed and challenged the false prince to enter the body of an animal. When he did, the real prince quickly re-entered his own body. The servant, unable to return to his body, is since then forced to going from one body to the next, eating the intestines.
The phi Pop is also said to be a female ogre who feeds on human intestines and/or the blood of animals at night.
Someone asked if these folklores and mythologies had to be followed with any historical accuracy. General consensus was "Nah. We're entertainers, not historians." Viola!
And the story could be circular if the husband of the wife Lark ate the guts out of last week happens to be driving down the same country road as Walden chases her across it. Rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat.