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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›  Serial Killer Moderators: bert
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Don
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 4:46pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Serial Killer by Alex Sarris - Short, Comedy - A serial killer wanders through an unlocked door to take out his evil revenge on an unsuspecting victim in an ending that you will never forget. 2 pages - pdf, format



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-------------
You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
- Wayne Gretzky

Revision History (4 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Don  -  June 26th, 2012, 11:13am
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bert
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 4:55pm Report to Moderator
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Buy the ticket, take the ride

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The "ending I will never forget" might be more humorous if the title did not completely spoil it.

And for only two pages, this script is also stuffed with unnecessary details that slow the read way, way down.  This could easily be trimmed to a single page if done right.

I have a few more comments for this one should the author chime in to say hello.


Hey, it's my tiny, little IMDb!
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danbotha
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 5:27pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Alex.

I'm in agreement with Bert, here. For a two page script this one does seem to drag on for awfully long.

Page 1: Great to see a FADE IN .... I may be mistaken, but they should be above the slugline.

You have definitely falling victim to overwriting, something I haven't gotten over yet. I'm willing to specify if you're around these boards.

Cut down on unnecessary words and you should have a good short.

Daniel


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B.C.
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 6:05pm Report to Moderator
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I think this is a clear example of a writer taking his first shot at writing a script. It might even be the first draft of a first script.

So, lets be nice.



To the writer, here's some brief observations (if you're around).

The first page - the little girl, the electrician, the painter, the gardeners and the small Honda.

You don't need any of these. You could literally have the man walk up the path to the house, for what it's worth.

I 'get' the attempt at humour (I think) with regards to the title of the script and the final scene, but...it's not enough, even for a two pager (which could essentially be a one pager if the needless detail was cut). It's not clever enough to be a sketch, unfortunately.

Also - unless we inhabit the world of 'Repo Man' (awesome movie from the 80's) a box of cereal generally doesn't just say 'Breakfast Cereal' on it. You could make up your own brand name to avoid any copywrite issues.

Hope this helps.
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Forgive
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 6:35pm Report to Moderator
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Let The Sky Fall

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Okay - I'm not going to go against the general consensus - post deleted.
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Ledbetter
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 6:56pm Report to Moderator
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There is some good stuff I here but a lot of fat too. Your opening sequence is way to long considering what it is you are trying to say.

You need to make sure you CAPITALIZE you main characters when introducing them for the first time. That’s is important.

You tend to use passive verbiage a lot too. When describing action in your script, it’s good to lose the “ing” in your action.

The first sentence is a good example. A well dressed man is walking…

Should read as a well dressed man walks.

You don’t want your action to sound continuous rather something that happens and is done.
You might want to make your characters more personal as well. Instead of schoolgirl, perhaps give her a name. That way, we become more invested in her.

You have to watch the un-filmable’s too. When you say something in your action like, CK says nothing as she passes by. Basically what you are saying is nothing. That is like saying the wind showed itself. You might be describing something but can you show it on screen? If not, don’t put it in your script.

Also, let’s work on being somewhat more creative with the action line as a whole. Take the time to decide how you want them to begin. The reason I say this is because in your action lines, you use “He” 15 times in a row to begin those sentences. After a while, it sounds like instructions, not action.

Bert’s right, this can either be trimmed down to a page, or take the time to fatten it up and developed into a story. As it stands, you are telling a story but in the end, you lose the readers interest.
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bert
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 6:58pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from Forgive
Okay - I'm not going to go against the general consensus - post deleted.


Thanks, S.C.  That was the correct call.  I was trying to figure out what to do with you, since that post seemed (generally) out of character.


Quoted from Ledbetter
I've made comments like this in the past and Don would pull it, and PM me crawling up my a$$ for beating down a writer.


Really...you get beat-downs from Don?  I thought that was my job?

I did not know he did that -- at least, not often.

Take heart author -- if you are around.  All is not lost haha.  Now I am like I really hope he shows up.


Hey, it's my tiny, little IMDb!
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Pale Yellow
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:13pm Report to Moderator
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I hope the writer chimes in. We all have to start somewhere. And here is where I started and have grown..and need to uh grow a lot more. We all start somewhere and you can't really be a writer unless you ...write.

One piece of advice, and this it to myself as much as you, read. Read scripts... all you can stand to read...

For the writer...I'm in the same boat...learning...I still have an overwriting habit I'm trying to break. Anyway, keep writing..look forward to reading some more of your work.
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GerryBuilt
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:14pm Report to Moderator
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That's it man, game over man, game over!!!

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I have to say, I have learnt more about scriptwriting finesse here, than anywhere else; by reading other people's scripts and reading constructive feedback (the key being constructive). Harsh words like those of SiColl do nothing to help build a writing community.

Whilst this script is fledgling at best, we all had to start somewhere. He some ACTUAL constructive feedback:

You need to read a few of the better written scripts around here; I like the shorts section, because I am time poor and want to learn technique. A quick read of thd first few responses will tell you if the structure and technique used are 'good'. Also read the Academy's script writing guide (you'll find links through a search of this site or Google for it). Your structure is bad, but it is a little out of whack in places. The story isn't particularly good; but we all need to develop a comfort zone before we can break out of it. An artist doesn't pick up a brush and simply start painting masterpieces...

You've got a good handle on structure; develop that and play around more with story ideas. You have built up some good visuals in your action lines; but you need to tighten them(you'll get some advice on this by reading responses to the work of other people here). Keep at it; and don't get caught up in the occasional negativity.

No writer improves his craft, or anyone else's, by beating up the less capable...


GerryBuilt: Blog - IMDB
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Winning the Fox Hunt (Short) - Art Director ("Lights! Canberra! Action!" Winner 2012)
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GerryBuilt
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:18pm Report to Moderator
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That's it man, game over man, game over!!!

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Corrections to my post:
Para 2
-He some = here's some
Para 3
-structure us bad - structure isn't bad

Hard to post from iPhone... :/


GerryBuilt: Blog - IMDB
Theatre of the Dead (Post-production) - Set Carpenter / Scenic Art
Winning the Fox Hunt (Short) - Art Director ("Lights! Canberra! Action!" Winner 2012)
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GerryBuilt
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:31pm Report to Moderator
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That's it man, game over man, game over!!!

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Quoted from Ledbetter


You tend to use passive verbiage a lot too. When describing action in your script, it’s good to lose the “ing” in your action.

The first sentence is a good example. A well dressed man is walking…

Should read as a well dressed man walks.

You don’t want your action to sound continuous rather something that happens and is done.

see! This is awesome feedback!!! This is my learning for the day... Take this and learn from it; I certainly did...


GerryBuilt: Blog - IMDB
Theatre of the Dead (Post-production) - Set Carpenter / Scenic Art
Winning the Fox Hunt (Short) - Art Director ("Lights! Canberra! Action!" Winner 2012)
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Ledbetter
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:36pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from bert
  Really...you get beat-downs from Don?  I thought that was my job?

I did not know he did that -- at least, not often.



Do not let Don's outward appearance fool you. You pi$$ him off and he comes whipping.

And I learned. Oh how I learned...

It's been a while sense I got a good chiding from you Bert. I need to step up my game.

Shawn.....><
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jwent6688
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 7:50pm Report to Moderator
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Meh, this could've been better. I like how you set up the shower scene, very Psycho-esque.

I think the box of cereal should have an expiration date which he checks. When he sees that it's out of date, he kills it.

It's all set-up for one quick laugh. I think most people would roll their eyes if they saw this on film. I would cut it down to one page. Feels more befitting of a commercial. To sell what? I have no clue...

James


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CoopBazinga
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 9:08pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Alex,

Let me start by saying it will be nice to have someone else from W.A on the boards, I live south of the river myself.

The logline drew me in with “an ending that you will never forget” I wouldn’t go that far but it certainly gave me a chuckle. Other than that, there was nothing here. It was basically all set up for that scene which is fine of course, that’s what it was meant to be.

However, the writing does need some work and I’ll be happy to elaborate if you’re around…hope so?

If not then all the best.  

Steve
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danbotha
Posted: May 19th, 2012, 9:15pm Report to Moderator
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Quoted from CoopBazinga


Let me start by saying it will be nice to have someone else from W.A on the boards, I live south of the river myself.



My Dad lives in Perth if that counts...


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