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I'm wondering first of all why you at least didn't name your one and only character. I felt that the voice over kept going on and on and on... and I knew the story from the beginning and there was nothing that all that voice over was going to do to change anything. Thus, nothing happens in this.
The tape recorder playing is interesting, but why does she make the tape? For whom? Everyone's dead.
This is pretty good. The first film that sprung to mind was the massively underappreciated Right At Your Door., which deals with a guy locking himself away from the world after a dirty bomb goes off. It's a claustrophobic thriller that chucked out a number of different difficult choices and conflicts.
Whilst reading I was thinking to myself how could you justify the VO and thought a tape recorder would be a neat idea, so was pleased to see you've done that. That said, the tape recorder's impact was diluted, IMO, by placing the VO throughout - I would've thought peppering it intermittently or just at the very end would up the ante. Silence in this scene could, and should, be its own character. I think you missed a trick there.
The good thing about playing tape recorder just at the end is that you could play around a bit with the narrative as this would be the 'discovery moment' where some sense is found amongst the madness of the world's collapse. We, the audience, make the 'discovery', but we'd surely feel more invested if we felt that discovery through a character.
You've clearly set up a scenario for a self-contained story and created a compelling enough base to build for rewrites if you so choose.
I think this would work really well if some fixes are made.
The V.O. doesn't bother me at all. I never understood why some people are so bothered by them. Your V.O. however needs to be trimmed way down. Right now it's way longer than the few visuals you have. I also think it would run long/boring on film.
The idea here definitely works and I like the tape recorder thing and her going out to join "them". IT just needs to be way shorter as a film to keep people's interest. I'd say 3 minutes max.
This one worked pretty well and would be an easy shoot. This kinda had a contagion feel to it, just with zombies. It might not be the most original idea out there, but it still works for the most part. It is a bit too long for what does go on, and having it all voice over is kinda strange, maybe have her at least talk to herself once or twice. Still, good job on completing the OWC.
This is a clear story that easily fits the OWC rules IMO. Congrats on creating a coherent script that plays by the rules. I don’t care for excessive V.O. I’d prefer more visual cues and less taking. The story goes on for too long, but has an effective conclusion. This is pretty well written, I’d read more from this author.
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My first review of the OWC. I enjoyed this and it grabbed me. I wanted to carry on reading knowing there would be a cool reveal (worried there wasn't) and the tape recorder is a great one. Zombies have been done to death (pardon the pun) but this is an interesting take and I liked the claustrophobia presented here. Negatives have already been mentioned - there are also a couple of orphans (thanks Dreamscale for telling me what one of those is!) and a few clunky descriptions. Naming the character gives her an identity to invest in as a reader, but when would you hear her name if watching this on the screen? I dug the fact she was anonymous. The visuals are enough for me to 'feel' for her predicament and isolation. I don't have a problem with V.O. and thought it was well used but it does need trimming.
As for my understanding of the disease and her intentions - The contagion is a mutated bird flu taht turns you into a zombie. And she intends to join them by becoming one of them.
unfortunately this one didn't do too much for me either. to be honest, i was bored most of the way through and was hoping for something to happen at the end. anything. but nothing happened. the dialogue repeats what movies like contagion have already expressed. so theres not much new here.
however it was well written and it flowed nicely. the tape recorder was a nice touch at the end as well and added a little bit to the story, but not enough to save it IMO
Lol. Of course the first story I choose to read is a zombie story. :-) It was kind of a nice try at a twist, but as soon as I saw 'pandemic', I said to myself right away 'Probably zombies'.
I actually like Voiceover more often than not, so that part didn't bother me at all or dampen my enjoyment of the story.
However, that being said, some of the dialogue in the voiceover was a little too on the nose and would probably sound a little weird on actual film.
Something that did kind of dampen my enjoyment of the story, though, was the awkward phrasing in the descriptions, and the whole six paragraphs it took to talk about light coming through the blinds.
Not a bad story here, I feel, but I don't think it's particularly good, either. It's not really anything that hasn't been done before, (actually, it's been done to death, probably), but it wasn't terrible at all. Probably exactly an average story, maybe just a little below.
Page 1: The opening description could be much more succinct. If we're going to be listening to Girl talking to herself for a long time, I wouldn't mind if there was a bit more spice to the dialogue. It just comes off as dull to listen to.
Page 2: Some awkward wording in the VOs, too. Probably just needs a general dialogue tuneup. To be expected with an early draft.
Page 5: She keeps saying, everyone's dead, everyone's dead, with certainty. Then on Page 5, she suddenly says, "most likely dead". An odd switch.
I think I would enjoy watching this if it were shot well.
I think that she could spend her time thinking about a lot more interesting things, though. What is it that you really want to say about being alone with this story? I wasn't quite clear what the focus was. The ideas presented that weren't exposition were definitely interesting, but there didn't seem to be one main idea that the story was about.
I like the idea of her choosing to be a zombie so as not to feel alone any more. That said, all of the VO doesn't really lead up to that choice, which means that the sudden realization of the choice lacks punch. What is needed here is a series of thoughts leading up to the idea that being dead with others is better than being alive alone.
Very good suggestions above, I notice, so I will leave it at that.
I thought this was okay. Written well enough but not too much happened. You could have shown us the girl a few days, or weeks even, before she decides to ultimately leave. Getting more and more desperate, eating mouldy bread, sniffing a bottle of milk, gagging then drinking it anyway. Something along those lines maybe.
The little thing that niggled at me was the 'locked locks'. I think we can assume they are locked so she can just stare at the locks. I know that's not a massive deal but it's something that didn't feel right to me. Unless they are bolted locks and you can see the bolt across the door of course, but then tell me that instead.
Long time no talk, everybody. A lot of you probably don't even know who I am.
I've been gone for some time and haven't been on SimplyScripts muchï¿½or at all, for that matter. I've been busy with school, trying to finish up my BFA in Digital Film and Video Production, and have finally graduated in December of 2012.
I want to get back on these boards, as quite a few people here are my friends and there are some damn good screenwriters here. This would be a wonderful opportunity for me to really get started on building my portfolio and helping others see their scripts come to life if I find one that piques my interest and if the budget allows. But, that's for later (and I don't want to sound like a businessman after being gone for over a year...). I digress...
Anyway, here I am, the author of this script. Why I never replied to any of these comments is beyond me, but I'm back, and I want to thank you all for reading this script. I know that people here don't like old threads to be bumped up, but I've also wanted to update you all with the news that this script has been filmed by some friends of mine and me. We had a blast doing so, and it would be an honor for anyone to watch this for their own entertainment (if they get any out of it).
Again, thank you for taking your time for reading this script, and it's great to be back. I look forward to seeing what's been popping up lately with old and new screenwriters on this website! Now, where to begin...