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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›  Cobb Hill Massacres Moderators: bert
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  Author    Cobb Hill Massacres  (currently 3870 views)
Don
Posted: December 1st, 2005, 8:08pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Cobb Hill Massacres by Gregory J. Baldwin - Short, Thriller - Many men went into the Cobb Hill steel mill in 1940 and never came out.  Now a curious detective is determined to find out what happened all those years ago, but the secret that he is trying to unveil may be too much for him to handle. - pdf, format


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Martin
Posted: December 1st, 2005, 9:06pm Report to Moderator
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Wow, Greg. This is a real departure from your usual stuff and I think you nailed it.

SPOILERS

A big, big story for 30 pages. This could easily be a feature but it works just fine as a short too. It's cleverly structured and kept my interest throughout.

You set the tone right away with some nice vivid descriptions. I absolutely love the way you describe Sidney. The opening exchange between the two of them had me hooked.

A few minor quibbles:

On page 8 you introduce a WOMAN in CAPS then EMILY, I thought there were two women for a second.

pg 11- slugline says day, description says evening?

pvg 14- who is Jimmy Joe? He's never introduced unless I missed something.

I was gonna call you on plausibility for the Emily thing but then Xavier did it for me. You were way ahead of me on that one.

Pg 17 "smashing several skulls on the way down" skulls or people's heads? I was a bit confused by this description.

pg 29- typo OJBECT

Overall, I'm really, really impressed by this. You've shown you can write the darker stuff as well as the family flicks. I couldn't put it down and I have the attention span of a 2 year old so props for that.

I thought your three central characters were great (Sid, Xavier, Otto) but Emily remained something of an enigma. The brainwashing thing was mentioned but we never really saw it first hand. She did seem a little too compliant at times.

Anyways, impressive stuff. I reckon you should visit the dark side more often.
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Shelton
Posted: December 1st, 2005, 10:20pm Report to Moderator
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Greg,

Just finished this up, and it was pretty impressive.  The exchanges between Sid and Xavier, plus the historical aspect of it made for a pretty cool read.  However, I did have one issue.


SPOILER

How could someone with such a Jewish sounding name like Sydney Jacobsen be making bombs for the Nazis?  I'm not sure if you did this as a bit of irony, but I found it kind of odd.


END SPOILER



Other than that, I thought this was a very well executed short.  Nice job.



Martin,

Jimmy Joe was introduced on page five during the first flashback.


Mike


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bert
Posted: December 1st, 2005, 11:40pm Report to Moderator
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You really create an effective sense of dread and suspense that left me wondering what could possibly be going on in this mill.  Really nice work with the back and forth, too, moving between then and now.  It’s one of those stories where I kept thinking, “Man, I hope the payoff is good enough to justify all of this great buildup.”  And there is a good payoff here -- two, actually -- one in Sid’s room, and another later, at the mill.  I like this story.


(SPOILERS)


*  I love that the first words uttered by a 106-year-old man are…well, you know.  But it seems like Xavier and Sid might chat a bit before getting right down to business.   Not so much as a “hello” before he whips out the photos?  It might be a little abrupt if this was actually played out.
*  I have to agree that the “…smashing several skulls on its way down” description doesn’t make much sense.  It's weird, and I would have said something even if Martin hadn't.
*  And later, how do we know, exactly, that these guys are FBI agents?  Are they in suits or something?  That is a detail that we should have.
*  Don’t give the groundskeeper a key.  Have Xavier shoot the lock.  I think that would be better.  (Hmm.  OK, now I see that you will need a fresh lock later.  Either way, I guess.)
*  And don’t have Xavier say, “Well, found the bodies.”  It is trite, and not necessary.  Just have him look shocked, or disgusted, or whatever.  We’ll get the picture.  And then he says, “Oh my God” twice in a row.  Once is enough.  Characters that talk to themselves too much look kind of weird on the screen, I think.

So, anyway, this is a really good story, Greg.  It is great to see you branching out and trying different things.  And succeeding, even.  You make me want to try a comedy.  (I do have one, actually; a little-seen episode of “Better Days”, but that’s another story…).  I will be curious to see what you come up with next.    


Hey, it's my tiny, little IMDb!

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bert  -  December 1st, 2005, 11:42pm
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-Ben-
Posted: December 2nd, 2005, 10:48pm Report to Moderator
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It's not really horror. It seemed like a drama/mystery. Anyway, the ending was unexpected, and with the whole Jewish name thing, Sidney Jacobson doesn;t sound jewish to me. Then again, i don't really know exactly what a jewish name sounds like.

When  i read the sypnosis i was thinking it would be more about the deaths, sort of like a horror/slasher, but it worked well as a mystery.

SPOLIER
The ending, with Hitler's signature on the folder, i'm just wondering what Hitler's sig actually looks like. Oh, and making the groudskeeper be Otto, also unexpected. The ending reminded me of the ending of Saw, too.

Good script, by far.


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greg
Posted: December 4th, 2005, 2:43am Report to Moderator
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Hey guys, thanks for the words here.  I'd been developing this story since July and originally it was going to be feature length but I decided, what the hell, let's try it for a short.

The "smashing skulls" thing, I was trying for some vivid description but I guess it didn't work to my advantage haha.  It was supposed to mean the column was falling onto a couple people, thus smashing their skulls.  Oh well.

Sidney Jacobson.  I'll tell ya, it's a good thing you're saying this instead of a producer.  I added in the little nazi bit after the first draft was completed and didn't realize that Sidney Jacobson was indeed a Jewish name.  Aye Carumba.

Bigwhoop-thanks!  I'm guessing Hitler's signature looks like his name...only scribbled.

Thanks again, guys!


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Shelton
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Quoted from greg
Sidney Jacobson.  I'll tell ya, it's a good thing you're saying this instead of a producer.  I added in the little nazi bit after the first draft was completed and didn't realize that Sidney Jacobson was indeed a Jewish name.  Aye Carumba.



I knew, if I kept at it, sooner or later one of my reviews would have something to offer.


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greg
Posted: December 4th, 2005, 3:47am Report to Moderator
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Mike, all tidbits of feedback are always noted, appreciated, and considered for future works


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dogglebe
Posted: December 5th, 2005, 10:37am Report to Moderator
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I thought this story was a little rushed.  It easily could be feature length with Xavier doing some footwork.  What do the surviving locals have to say?  What local urban legends have popped up?  Was the mill run by Satanists who needed the sacrifices?  Was it a gateway to hell?  With the ending being what it was, you don't want to rush it.

I thought some of the dialogue between Xavier and Sid was a bit on-the-nose.  Stretching out the stretch would probably eliminate it.


Phil
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Jonathan Terry
Posted: December 5th, 2005, 2:23pm Report to Moderator
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I do have to agree that this piece would work much better as a full length script.  I think you have a great idea and a talent for story telling but it is hard for anybody to convey a story of this magnitude in a 30 page slot.

Also, I think that Sid talks very good for a 100+ year old man.  If he is about to die shouldn't he have trouble speaking?

Great job, though!


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greg
Posted: December 5th, 2005, 7:06pm Report to Moderator
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I appreciate the feedback, gang.  One day I probably will extend this to full-length because I really like this story, but I must take it cautiously since the last time I extended a 30 page short, it turned into a disaster.

Errr, spoilers for those who haven't read.

100 year olds on their death bed can still talk alright.  My great grandmother was 101 when she died and was still able to talk up until her final week, and then she just kind of drifted away.  Of course in this feature, Sid doesn't die, but in a feature version there's no question that he will, and the dialogue will probably be more fitting for a person in his situation.  Maybe this will be my next project...in fact I think it should be.  I'll look more into this.  

Thanks!


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Jonathan Terry
Posted: December 5th, 2005, 8:16pm Report to Moderator
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The whole reason I asked about him talking was because you labeled him on the "verge of death."  This made me think he was very sick with a disease or virus or something along those lines.  Recently I visited an older fellow who was also in the hospital on the verge of death and couldn't speak more than 5 words at a time because he was so fatigued.  Maybe I'm just reading to far inbetween the lines.

Good luck on extended this.  I can't wait to read it.


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greg
Posted: December 5th, 2005, 8:29pm Report to Moderator
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Good observation, my friend. I guess that line can go side by side with the "crushing several skulls" one.  Anyway, it's good to read in between the lines, especially in this story because there's so much information.

So thanks again, your comment is noted.  


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Breanne Mattson
Posted: December 7th, 2005, 12:40am Report to Moderator
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Hey Greg,

Good story. Great ending.

Yeah, there is a bit of a hole with the Jewish sounding name. But, hey, he could just be a traitor. He’s already betraying the U.S. if they created the factory in the first place. Maybe he’s a profiteer playing both sides.

Or perhaps that’s not even his real name. It does need to be reconciled though just to keep people from wondering, particularly since the character’s background is so foundational to the plot.

You could easily expand it with a little more character development. I was curious as to why Emily would go for Sidney, especially when it was so obvious that ordinarily they (Sidney, Otto, etc.) would have killed her. I would need more of her background to understand her motivation.

There are a lot of angles though and a lot of directions you could go. Who knows? Maybe the U.S. government was going to sell the bomb to Germany at one time???

Overall, it was an interesting read. In some ways it did seem, as another poster noted, rushed. In some areas it was very tight and in others, it wasn’t as tight as some earlier work I’ve read. Sometimes it reads like your inspiration was flooding faster than you could type.--haha

It did seem inspired, though. It needs a little work but who’s doesn’t?

Good job.

Breanne


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greg
Posted: December 7th, 2005, 1:03am Report to Moderator
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Breanne,

I love you!  Your interpretation of the ending was like magic to my eyes.  I was afraid that maybe there was too much going on and that it would kind of slip away.  Lots of shtuff going on, ya know?

Anyway, thanks!


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