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Dustin
Posted: April 19th, 2015, 3:24am Report to Moderator
Of The Ancients


Action speaks louder...

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Quoted from Colkurtz8

- So that means you do read scripts. You got over 2200 posts!


I meant professional scripts. I downloaded Tarantino's Hateful 8 once and only read 2 pages.


Quoted Text
Not always of course but I see it happen a lot. Important details can get lost in a sea of monotonous looking prose. Even in just a block of three lines. Iíve been guilty of it myself reading other scripts and itís happened to me with folk reading mine. I think itís safe to assume that the majority of people reading scripts, read them quickly. Prose-wise, youíre not there to bask in the writingís aesthetic qualities, thatís what novels are for. Which is why brevity is king for so many, they want the reading experience to be nearly as fluid as watching the film itself.


I don't agree that novels are for basking in the aesthetic qualities of the writing... if I were to see random words capped in a novel, I would also be put off reading those. Brevity is also king in a novel. Often the examples given to screenwriters regarding novels are not something we'd ever find in a well written book. The way the information is relayed in a novel allows for tells, so images can be conjured and stories told that would probably be impossible to film.



Quoted Text

I donít mind prose heavy scripts as long as the writing is worthy of it. I enjoy good writing full stop and read much more prose than screenplays but since Iím far from a good writer I use the least words possible so thereís less chance of my deficiencies being exposed. There is nothing worse than an overwritten script littered with clunky phrasing and bad grammar. Thatís the epitome of delusion, not recognizing your own limitations.


Well yes, I agree... however you can also go too far the other way. You shouldn't see yourself as a not very good writer. To write screenplays you need to be a good writer too, else it will show just as badly as it would in a novel. I noted that you have a natural flow, but I felt that flow was broken at times with your choices.




Quoted Text
- Like I said, itís more about highlighting the key points in the visual make-up of a scene. Iíll take the block of prose in question:

ďHe holds up TWO SUIT JACKETS of varying shades of navy, debates...selects the DARKER SHADE...moves onto FOUR NECKTIES laid on the bed of varying shades of navy, MUTTERS to himself.Ē

- A quick glance at that and registering the capped words tells you very quickly what Angus is doing. Youíre right, in the grand scheme of the story these arenít significant details, itís just Angus getting dressed after all. However, for this particular scene, they are the essence of whatís happening on screen, what weíre seeing so within that context they are all that matter for now. My goal is clarity, communicating the primary images of a scene with only a cursory skim.

As I acknowledged, itís not to everyoneís tastes and Iím cool with that.


He holds up TWO SUIT JACKETS of varying shades of navy, debates...selects the DARKER SHADE...moves onto FOUR NECKTIES laid on the bed of varying shades of navy, MUTTERS to himself.

He holds up two suit jackets in varying shades of navy, debates...selects the darker...moves onto four neckties, in varying shades of navy, laid on the bed, mutters.


I've given the second version a bit of an edit. No need to mention that he mutters to himself. Also, once you've described the neckties and moved onto the bed, you shouldn't really make the final part of the sentence about the neckties. In your version, it could be interpreted that the bed is in varying shades of navy. Anyway, the point is that the information is all there just the same and it isn't important so doesn't matter if one misses it.

But, like you said, if that's how you want to do it, then it's up to you. I've been looking over scripts with a producer's eye recently and I have to say that, were I so inclined, it probably wouldn't stop me from making it. So there's that.



Quoted Text
Fair enough. Have you ever seen someone mutter to themselves and not catch what theyíre saying, as in talk under their breath? Think of a Muttley from the Dastardly and Muttley cartoon or your average wino vagrant Angus is in rehearse mode here, going over his lines like an actor before an audition.


Yes I have... but then people can mutter in all sorts of ways. Anger, in exasperation, moaning... etc. I think you need to make clear exactly what this muttering is and why he's doing it.



Quoted Text
- I guess I didnít think I needed to specify he was looking at his own reflection, I figured that would be assumed. Especially in light of what Sheila has just said to him. Heís psyching himself up, taking a long hard look at himself in the mirror, etc, so itís appropriate that heís looking at himself. Again, itís about context within the scene, that is important. I will change ďstares hard at the mirrorĒ to ďstares hard in the mirrorĒ though as it seems more apt but I donít think further direction is needed.


Using the in makes a lot of difference.


Quoted Text
On a purely straightforward level, we know he has flossed because we saw him doing it in the last scene. On a more aesthetic level itís to give the impression of Angus being ready to go out on the trail. Itís like when you say someone is ďin their Sunday bestĒ for an event or a woman is ďprim and properĒ. They can be seen as somewhat abstract or vague language but it instantly stirs up an image of that person because of its connotations. That was the intention behind the ďdressed, combed and flossedĒ phrase here, itís emblematic of Angusís careful attention to superficial preparations. Heís all set for the day ahead. Some might see it as a redundant aside but I feel it earns its place because of the visual it conjures up.


Maybe you could show him combing his hair? If you showed him dressing, flossing and combing, making sure that everything is impeccable (the old, not a hair out of place thing) that that would show how careful he is.



Quoted Text
All good, I was just curious as to why the bulk of your remarks focused on technical minutiae with little to no mention of the story as a whole. Iím glad you got a few smiles out of it anyway as its meant to be satirical above anything, a bit of a laugh.


I often read stories and simply enjoy them. If the choices made are good then I rarely have any complaints. I saw this as a light hearted comedy.


Quoted Text
Itís interesting that you say you could never write anything like this. Iíve noticed from the stuff Iíve read from you that its dark, gritty dramas you gravitate towards or perhaps feel most comfortable with. I was like that for a long time too in that the vast majority of my scripts were dramas which often ended tragically. However, in the past couple of years most of my shorts have taken a much more humorous tone. The cynicism remains, it just has a different inflection now. This was a conscious decision to lighten things up and see if I could diversify.

My features are still as depressing as ever though

Anyway, it could be worth exploring yourself. You got a sense of humour, right

Thanks for the back and forth, man. I love discussion like this, itís the main reason I post on here.

Cheers.

Col.


I am writing another comedy. My first attempt, Donny and Floyd failed because my first draft was 146 pages with lots of funny in it. My second draft ended up as a 90 page drama.

Anyway, I'm trying again with a concept I've wanted to write for a couple of years now. I've done 23 pages in two days so far. Should hit 35 today. Still though, it's more of a darker comedy than a light hearted one. Maybe with age, I'll get there.

Good luck.


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Colkurtz8
Posted: April 21st, 2015, 7:10am Report to Moderator
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Mark

Thanks for giving this a look, man.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Great imagery of the poster. The name Angus McGinty does actually sound like an independent politician.


- Yeah, I thought opening with the election poster would be the most succinct and effective way to introduce the character by purely visual means. I had a bit of fun with the name alright. Same with Noreen Twohig and Cyrill Duffy.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
For some reason I imagined the two woman commenting on the poster sounding like the guys from Monty Python when they put women's voices on. It made me smile.


- Anything that invokes Monty Python is cool with me.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Maybe give the two women names, it would help me identify with  them more.


- Since they only appear in that scene so I didnít think it was necessary. Plus the idea of just numbering them is to give the impression they are just two of the anonymous electorate, the average voter.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Angus and Sheila introduced nicely, it's flowing along quite smoothly.  There's a lot of ellipses in the action and dialogue. I don't suppose there's anything wrong with that it's just an ellipsis in a script normally means a train of thought that has just sort of drifted away...whereas here they also seem to signify natural pauses. A minor niggle though.


- Yeah, they signify pauses in dialogue, the phrasing of its delivery. I see it in prose all the time and scripts for that matter and it makes sense to me so I employ it.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
Another minor niggle, lots of-- interruptions. It could get a bit tiresome.


- Eldave1 had a problem with that to but itís intentional and for a reason. The character doing the interrupting is usually the dominant one within a given scene. Their insistence on speaking by cutting off the other is a reflection of this, itís indicative of their character.

For example, in the scenes between Angus and Shelia itís usually the latter because sheís clearly the alpha presence there while in the Angus and Colm scenes itís usually the former for the same reason. I liked that changing dynamic. Then in the radio interview scene its more even handed as Angus is trying to get his points across while Phil continuously steers the conversation towards a new topic to stop Angus from rambling or to poke fun at the error which has marred his campaign so far.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
The characters were rich, well rounded and realistic. I understood everything that was going on and could visualise the scenes perfectly. You describes small town politics and the people who live in such rural areas perfectly and this was a good tale of how the public's perceptions can change dramatically on a whim.


- Thanks. Yeah, you nailed it, itís more about the fickle nature of public perception, which is more reactionary than ever now, then it being specifically about Angus. He is more of a vehicle in which to expose these absurdities.  


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
You can sense there's a but coming along so here it is. But, the comedy as such for me is extremely light.  I liked Angus, but I felt more sorry for him than maybe I should. I neither laughed at him nor with him.


- Ah, the inevitable but! Thatís a pity you didnít get any laughs out of it as I did predominately write this as a comedy with some dramatic elements. Itís meant to be broadly satirical and a little exaggerated in order to explore the theme I mentioned above.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
He only makes one bumble and that is the messiah comment, the Witch issue was out of his control, yet he's described in the logline as a bumbling first-time politician.


- Yeah but we see how he interacts with his wife, how much she calls the shots, how off he was when he suggested what he should talk about to Phil. I tried to indicate in those opening scenes with Sheila how much she dictates his actions, how lost he would be without her. When he pontificates in front of Colm we again get an idea of what kind of guy he is. True, the only tangible bumbles are the printing error and his ďmessiahĒ slip up but overall I wanted to give the impression that this guy is always one line away from saying something stupid or misguided. Heís a bit of a fool, means well but not taken very seriously. In his ramblings to Phil he needs to be reined in and cut off and when trying to placate the voters at their front doors he is ill-equipped and unable the salvage his pride with any of them.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
There's potential here for a 'Last of the Summer Wine' type sitcom, the problem is the characters are too realistic and it's more drama than comedy. Maybe that was the intention but there were moments when it was an effort to read rather than a joy; the radio interview for example. There could have been a lot more comedy here but all we have is Angus boring us with the usual politics speech that we've all heard many times.


- Not so sure about the Last of the Summer WineĒ comparison but I guess itís a institution of British TV The radio interview has been an issue for some and Iíve already explained my intention behind it so I wonít repeat myself here, not out of laziness or disrespect to you, itís just ground Iíve covered already in previous posts if you want to check them out.

What I will say, is that I think itís generally more important to stay truthful to your character and the situation even if it means sacrificing drama or in this case, comedy. I couldíve made that scene more snappy and conventionally funny but that would betray Angus character and the nature of these type of interviews which are dull, PR exercises where the politician gets to drone on about themselves and what they are going to do if elected. It was actually listening to one of these last summer during our local elections that gave me the idea for the script.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
All it would take is slight tweaks to turn this into more comedy than drama.


- Iíll look into this and thanks for the suggestion, there can always be more jokes injected into something but this aligns with my own sense of humour and what I respond to in films. Comedy that comes more from character and dialogue than laugh out loud gags.


Quoted from MarkRenshaw
I also don't think the name Blank Canvas represents what this story is about, although I get the intent of it.  


- Yeah, Tiger mentioned this above too. Yes, Angus does have things to say but the impression I wanted to give was that they are opinions and point of view largely adopted from other people, the customers at the store he works and of course his wife. Heís very much trotting out the same old local concerns we hear all the time. I do believe heís enthusiastic and driven and cares about the parish but a lot of it fuelled by what heís other folk say. Plus, the word ďblankĒ has associations with stupidity and cluelessness which can certainly be found in parts of Angusís character.

Thanks again for the read, Mark, much appreciated.


Manolis

Good to hear from you, havenít seen you around for awhile. Thanks for the read.


Quoted from Athenian
My only gripe is that the robbery scene isn't totally plausible in my eyes. The robbers having left the door ajar, not looking out to see if anybody is coming, not noticing AngusÖ It seems that these guys aren't very clever or experienced either, are they? What if the curtains on some window weren't entirely closed and Angus saw them through it, for instance? Just an idea.


- Fair point. My thinking is that yes these are not the brightest thieves, there are just local no-gooders looking for a quick score. It wouldíve been very much a smash and grab operation. Thatís why I specified they were in tracksuits and peaks caps. It might be a cultural stereotype but in Ireland, young males in this attire in an urban areas suggests a certain unsavoury demographic.

- Of course I will admit that the door had to be open for the story reasons too. I wanted Angus to enter, see what was going on, fleeing, before gaining courage but by then he has locked himself out of the house. Only for the two boys are leaving at that time and crash into Angus he wouldnít have been the hero he is now being made out to be. Of course we know different.  That whole scene was intentionally un-heroic and accidental. Yes, he does show some balls by turning back but the rest is pure luck.

Which is why I couldnít really have Angus just see them through the window. It was important for me to have him make that critical decision of flight over fight when inside the house. If he remained outside it would be much easier for him to react accordingly. Having him in the house puts him in more immediate danger and tests his true colours.


Quoted from Athenian
Also, when Angus finally decides to intervene, what is his plan exactly? To confront the robbers alone? I'd expect him to call the police first, at least, and ask Colm for help. Otherwise, he puts Mrs. Hogan in even greater danger, trying to play the hero. Perhaps this is something you could stress though: That Angus was lucky enough not only to become a hero by accident, but also
not to become the hero he intended to. That would have been a disaster, most likely.


- Thatís a good question. I donít think even Angus knows. Itís that spur of the moment reaction. Heís sees a crestfallen Colm in that car, realises his political ambitions have taken another beating after the radio interview and just knows he has to do something to prove himself. Itís time to man up. Youíre right, he probably wouldíve made matter worse if heíd actually gotten back onto the house and tried to be the hero. We can only speculate how it wouldíve went down. I guess in cases like that one hopes to catch the thieves by surprise and scare them away.

The most apparent thing I wanted readers to take away from the scene was that Angusís actions were chiefly inadvertent and far from heroic and how that is not going to matter in terms of the media and public perception. Theyíll just want to simplify and streamline it into a clear, unambiguous narrative where heíll be held up as the night in shining armour...and Angus understands this much.


Quoted from Athenian
Finally, I don't mind interrupted dialogue, but I would avoid interruptions like: ďWe're just dropping by, hopping you'll keep me in mind fó". It would probably be better if the reader could figure out what the full word would have been.


- Thanks for the suggestion, Iíll look into this.


Quoted from Athenian
Anyway, I liked the script a lot Ė especially, your portrayal of Angus. You managed to make him likable despite all his flaws. Who knows, perhaps I could even vote for him.


Thanks for the kind words. Ha, yeah, heís incompetent, an idiot but has a spark...and is probably no worse than the rest of them.

Thanks again for taking the time, appreciate it.

Col.


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Colkurtz8
Posted: May 1st, 2015, 8:48am Report to Moderator
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Dustin


Quoted from Dustin
I meant professional scripts. I downloaded Tarantino's Hateful 8 once and only read 2 pages.


- Ok, I was just talking about scripts. I read both but wait until after Iíve watched the film if itís indeed one I plan to seek out. Tarantino is definitely on that list for me. There has been a few occasions where I broken that rule though with Steve McQueenís ďShameĒ, ďBuriedĒ with Ryan Reynolds and ďThe DescendantsĒ


Quoted from Dustin
I don't agree that novels are for basking in the aesthetic qualities of the writing...


- True, not always but there are certain novels that focus more on aesthetics than a functional narrative. Form over content. My point is that prose writing is far more suited and accommodating to that type of writing than screenplays which is purely functional. Where you are to convey whatís happening on screen and little else.


Quoted from Dustin
if I were to see random words capped in a novel, I would also be put off reading those.


- You see them as random words but have my reasoning behind every one I cap.


Quoted from Dustin
Brevity is also king in a novel.


- I donít agree. It totally depends on the type of novel and perhaps more importantly, the type of writer.


Quoted from Dustin
  Often the examples given to screenwriters regarding novels are not something we'd ever find in a well written book. The way the information is relayed in a novel allows for tells, so images can be conjured and stories told that would probably be impossible to film.


- Yeah, there is a lot more artistic freedom in a novel naturally, both in the external and internal. Thatís why I dilettante like me gravitated toward screenplays


Quoted from Dustin
  I've given the second version a bit of an edit. No need to mention that he mutters to himself. Also, once you've described the neckties and moved onto the bed, you shouldn't really make the final part of the sentence about the neckties. In your version, it could be interpreted that the bed is in varying shades of navy. Anyway, the point is that the information is all there just the same and it isn't important so doesn't matter if one misses it.


- I debated whether to leave out ďto himselfĒ or not actually. To me, itís extra clarity to prevent the reader thinking he is muttering to someone else or louder than I intended. If I could fit it on the line, I would include it but if it meant going onto a new line I would omit it. In both cases I was able to squeeze it in but I remember in the earlier stages when the action line was longer I just had ďMUTTERSĒ. Iíve become very conscious about spilling onto a new line with just a couple of words, seems so wasteful.

Good call on rearranging the ďlaid on the bedĒ part, Iíve made that change.


Quoted from Dustin
  Yes I have... but then people can mutter in all sorts of ways. Anger, in exasperation, moaning... etc. I think you need to make clear exactly what this muttering is and why he's doing it.


- I hoped the subsequent dialogue would give an idea of how he was saying it. Yes, at this time we donít know who Phil is or grasp the full picture of what he is talking about, that only comes later when we hear him repeating it; loosely in the first case (his affinity with the parish) and verbatim in the second instance (his slogan). Then we really understand what heís rambling on about.

However, we do know from the opening shot that he is a politician and its election time so again, I hoped the reader would join the dots and surmise that Angus is preparing for some kind of speech or interview.


Quoted from Dustin
  Maybe you could show him combing his hair? If you showed him dressing, flossing and combing, making sure that everything is impeccable (the old, not a hair out of place thing) that that would show how careful he is.


- I could but I felt I had showed enough with him dressing and flossing to get the idea across. Plus, his hair is mentioned already in the opening scene, both in the action lines ďcombed hairĒ and in the dialogue ďHis hair is greasy.Ē


Quoted from Dustin
  I am writing another comedy. My first attempt, Donny and Floyd failed because my first draft was 146 pages with lots of funny in it. My second draft ended up as a 90 page drama.


- Yeah, itís interesting how we gravitate towards what we respond to, and often subconsciously, without realising it. Itís that auteur thing of how they return to explore similar themes over and over.

Cheers, best of luck with your writing going forward too. If you want me to read anything let me know.

Col.


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DanC
Posted: May 12th, 2015, 2:35pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Howard,
    I'm gonna read your screenplay.  

Good luck and here goes:

1.  I know this is probably just me, but when you open with "fixed to a telephone pole" I imagined that he was nailed to it, like crucifixion style.  Perhaps you want to add the word photo in there somewhere

2.  Wait, so he spends all that time flossing so he can eat cereal?  Wouldn't he eat first then floss?

3.  You give an AWFUL lot of back story to explain why he feels he's right for this job.  I wonder if his monolog is really all necessary.  I understand that he's reciting and improving his speeches, but, all this back story tires out the reader.    I know you break it up, but, it's all him reading about his life.  I wonder if there isn't a better way to do that.  Perhaps a funny "this is your life" skit...

4.  I wonder when Angus goes door to door if you shouldn't do that as a montage-like setting.  It's a funny thing when he screws up again.  You could easily show different faces responding to his latest gaffe.

5.  I think it's funny how you guys spell Kerb when we spell it curb.  I wonder every time what the heck is that word for a second or 2.  

I just finished it.  It was good.  I don't like the ending b/c I think you leave it too open.  I think a lack of dates also hurts.  

When you write for people who aren't from your country, we don't know the rules.  For us, most of election day is on the first tuesday of November.  Why would Sheila tell him to stop going around unless it's nearly election time.  I think we need to know that.

I also think I'd like to know who the mysterious hand was.  Was it the second thief?  That'd be cool.  Also, the second thief knows the truth about the accidental arrest.  It'd be awesome if that somehow came into play.  I imagine that was who wrote opportunist on his poster.   I could imagine the other candidates looking for that second thief to try to discredit Angus from his new-founded bump to front runner.  

I did like the story, but, I do think it needs some work.  The back story really detracts from the actual story.  I'd rather you focus on his 2 errors and the robbery rather then the back story.  OR if you are gonna work on the back story, have him practice with his wife and perhaps screw up that part at home.  Have that screw up on his mind as he gives the speech live and then have him screw up.  I could imagine him swearing to himself in his mind.  

Good luck with it, I'd read any rewrite you do.

Dan


Please read my scripts:
http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-series/m-1427564706/

I'm interested in reading animation, horror, sci fy, suspense, fantasy, and anything that is good.  I enjoy writing the same.  Looking to team with anyone!

Thanks
Dan
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Colkurtz8
Posted: May 16th, 2015, 5:53am Report to Moderator
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Dan

Many thanks for the read, much appreciated.


Quoted from DanC
1.  I know this is probably just me, but when you open with "fixed to a telephone pole" I imagined that he was nailed to it, like crucifixion style.  Perhaps you want to add the word photo in there somewhere


- Ha, I see what you mean but I donít think itís necessary because the slugline tells us itís an ďELECTION POSTERĒ. I try to avoid repeating the slugline in the prose where possible, itís redundant.


Quoted from DanC
2.  Wait, so he spends all that time flossing so he can eat cereal?  Wouldn't he eat first then floss?


- Thatís a great point which no one has ever picked up on before. Iíll omit the cereal eating but the flossing stays!


Quoted from DanC
3.  You give an AWFUL lot of back story to explain why he feels he's right for this job.  I wonder if his monolog is really all necessary.  I understand that he's reciting and improving his speeches, but, all this back story tires out the reader.    I know you break it up, but, it's all him reading about his life.  I wonder if there isn't a better way to do that.  Perhaps a funny "this is your life" skit...


- In a purely storytelling sense it might seems like blatant exposition but itís a reflection of his character and the circumstance heís in. Itís meant to be dull and boring, such is the nature of these political PR campaigns. The sheer banality of Angusís  life story and background is the point and his efforts of trying to inject it with some purpose and significance is where I hoped the humour would come from.


Quoted from DanC
4.  I wonder when Angus goes door to door if you shouldn't do that as a montage-like setting.  It's a funny thing when he screws up again.  You could easily show different faces responding to his latest gaffe.


- You mean cut away to a succession of reacting faces? That could work but I wanted to stay with Angus through all of this and have him experience first-hand how the electorate have taken his latest slip up. That immediacy of direct interaction is where I was looking to get in some humour too.


Quoted from DanC
5.  I think it's funny how you guys spell Kerb when we spell it curb.  I wonder every time what the heck is that word for a second or 2.


- Ya there are lot of cases of that. We feel the ďuĒ deserves its place in favour, colour, odour, neighbour, etc...while you crazy Amercians treat it with scorn!


Quoted from DanC
I just finished it.  It was good.  I don't like the ending b/c I think you leave it too open.  I think a lack of dates also hurts.  


Ok, sorry it didnít work for you. I felt I had enough in there to suggest how Angusís campaign has been irrevocably changed for the better but thatís not really what the script is interested in; whether heíll win or not. Itís more about the fickle, knee jerk, context-less nature of public perception. Not the most groundbreaking of themes to explore I know but it is something thatís become increasingly problematic in todayís society where everything is instant, information is disseminated, interpreted, distorted and judged quicker than ever before.

This is why Angusís error are so minor. I couldíve had him drop an f-bomb or say something homophobic, racist, sexist, etc but that wouldíve been too easy. The insignificance of his mistakes were to amplify the ridiculousness of the situation, accentuate the satirical aspect of the script. The bookended scenes of the woman assessing the election posters on a purely aesthetic level with diametrically opposed points of view was an extension of this theme also.


Quoted from DanC
When you write for people who aren't from your country, we don't know the rules.  For us, most of election day is on the first tuesday of November.  Why would Sheila tell him to stop going around unless it's nearly election time.  I think we need to know that.


- The reason why Sheila tells him to stop campaigning is informed by the theme I mentioned above. She understands that Angus is in the good books of the electorate now and knowing his character, will just as easily put his foot in it again so she adopts the ďquit while your aheadĒ approach. I donít think knowing the specific election dates is important.


Quoted from DanC
I also think I'd like to know who the mysterious hand was.  Was it the second thief?  That'd be cool.  Also, the second thief knows the truth about the accidental arrest.  It'd be awesome if that somehow came into play.  I imagine that was who wrote opportunist on his poster.   I could imagine the other candidates looking for that second thief to try to discredit Angus from his new-founded bump to front runner.  


- Yeah the hand writing ďopportunistĒ is intentionally left ambiguous but I did anticipate people to assume it was one of the thieves, which is fine too. Again, I donít think itís important to find out who it is, itís more about the idea that although Angus has won over the vast majority of people with his ďperceived heroicsĒ there will always be folk that wonít be seduced by the black and white, yay or nay media hoopla surround it and see through the bullsh?t.

Those additional plot development you mentioned are great suggestions and would be worth exploring if I were to expand this. Thanks.


Quoted from DanC
I did like the story, but, I do think it needs some work.  The back story really detracts from the actual story.  I'd rather you focus on his 2 errors and the robbery rather then the back story.  OR if you are gonna work on the back story, have him practice with his wife and perhaps screw up that part at home.  Have that screw up on his mind as he gives the speech live and then have him screw up.  I could imagine him swearing to himself in his mind.


- I already gave my reasoning behind the emphasis on Angusís speech making so I wonít repeat myself. I take your point all the same though. Itís interesting that you bring up him making mistakes in his rehearsals as I took this into consideration when writing them. While he delivers them confidently when selecting his suit and tie, in front of the mirror and with Colm there are some subtle differences to what he says in those instances and what he says to Phil during the interview.

Despite Angusís lack of tact and general incompetence he knows enough to not blame the townspeople for the state of the town, instead calling out the headquarters in Dublin. This is in stark contrast to how he views the issue in the privacy of Colmís car. Also, he voices his small minded, provincial opinion about Cyril Duffy running for office and criticises the incumbent candidate while graciously espousing their virtues in the interview. I thought it was important to show that Angus has picked up a trick or two along the campaign trail.

Thanks again for the read and sorry again it didnít work for you on the whole.

Col.


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stevemiles
Posted: May 18th, 2015, 3:43pm Report to Moderator
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Col,

Nicely played swipe at the fickle nature of (local) politics.  

Took me a little while to figure out where we were in the world, but no bother.  No real gripes here -- thought the characters and situations were well drawn.  Particularly like the bookend approach as set-up and payoff.

If anything the radio interview ran a touch too long.  Dialogue felt dry -- almost too natural.  The messiah slip-up works fine, just took a while to get there.  Maybe more fun along the way?  The previous in-car conversation with Colm benefitted from the Ďsalutesí breaking up the conversation.  An extra quirk or two could perhaps give it a little more flavour.

Nice touch with Angus going back only to find the door locked.

Different and thatís no bad thing.

Steve.


My short scripts can be found here on my new & improved budget website:


http://stevemiles80.wixsite.com/sjmilesscripts
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Colkurtz8
Posted: May 23rd, 2015, 12:56am Report to Moderator
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Steve

Thanks for taking the time.


Quoted from stevemiles
Took me a little while to figure out where we were in the world, but no bother.


- Yeah there are a few turns of phrase and charcterisatons in there which would be familiar to an Irish person.


Quoted from stevemiles
If anything the radio interview ran a touch too long.  Dialogue felt dry -- almost too natural.


- As I've explained in previous posts this scene was intentionally drawn out and dull as its a reflection of what these things are like, formal, on-the-nose and over rehearsed. Also, it provides an indicator of what kind of person Angus is, just another mouthpiece trotting out the same old stuff. Phil is essentially the reader here and his impatience and restlessness hopefully mirrors the reader's.


Quoted from stevemiles
Nice touch with Angus going back only to find the door locked.


- Yeah, having the door locked was to drive home the point that Angus's initial cowardice had fucked things up and only for the robbers were leaving at that time, he would have essentially locked the hapless Mrs. Hogan in with them, sealed her to her fate. All this was to reinforce the notion that Angus was far from heroic and only inadvertently saved the day, at least in terms of getting Mrs. Hogan's money back.

Thanks again for your thoughts and I'm glad you picked up on some of the things I was going for.

Col.


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SteveDiablo
Posted: May 23rd, 2015, 2:03am Report to Moderator
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These dropboxfiles are fricking annoying.
Would a producer want to go throught the crap I just went through to reead this? Probably not!"

Ditch Dropbox. Great for people that have it, but for those that don't --

It's an annoyance.

So I'm interested -- once I finally found it -- and would like to read it.

comments are based on how I read it as I went. May need editing themselves.

The opening is a mixed bag.
I get what you mean, but it's a very awkward scene.
No, it's just awkwardly set.

*sorry for being such an asshat, but I am only trying to help. I can only say what I see.

If I'm honest, the opening is pretty poor.

I'll try and explain why if you can make a decent pdf.

Very difficult to read.

Post in correct format in pdf.

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SteveDiablo  -  May 23rd, 2015, 3:37am
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DS
Posted: May 23rd, 2015, 7:17am Report to Moderator
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Quoted from SteveDiablo
These dropboxfiles are fricking annoying.
Would a producer want to go throught the crap I just went through to reead this? Probably not!"

Ditch Dropbox. Great for people that have it, but for those that don't --

It's an annoyance.

So I'm interested -- once I finally found it -- and would like to read it.

comments are based on how I read it as I went. May need editing themselves.

The opening is a mixed bag.
I get what you mean, but it's a very awkward scene.
No, it's just awkwardly set.

*sorry for being such an asshat, but I am only trying to help. I can only say what I see.

If I'm honest, the opening is pretty poor.

I'll try and explain why if you can make a decent pdf.

Very difficult to read.

Post in correct format in pdf.


Looks like you're taking your own disdain and/or not knowing how to use Dropbox into absolutes here. The file is clearly a pdf and the "new to Dropbox?" window that pops up? You can just close it and start reading whether you have a Dropbox account or not.
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rendevous
Posted: May 23rd, 2015, 7:57am Report to Moderator
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Works fine for me too. I don't have Dropbox either. I thought the start was pretty good. I would read on but there's something good on the telly and I'm having a drink.  

R


Out Of Character - updated


New Used Car

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SteveDiablo
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Quoted from DS


Looks like you're taking your own disdain and/or not knowing how to use Dropbox into absolutes here. The file is clearly a pdf and the "new to Dropbox?" window that pops up? You can just close it and start reading whether you have a Dropbox account or not.


Looks like you're right.
I tried opening this at home and it works fine, sorry about that.

I will give it a read ( bet you can't wait) and write a few thoughts later.



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Colkurtz8
Posted: May 25th, 2015, 9:39am Report to Moderator
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Gents


Quoted from DS
The file is clearly a pdf and the "new to Dropbox?" window that pops up? You can just close it and start reading whether you have a Dropbox account or not.


- Thanks for explaining this, Marko. I had Dropbox long before I actually started using it but assumed you didn't need to download it in order to access files.


Quoted from rendevous
Works fine for me too. I don't have Dropbox either. I thought the start was pretty good. I would read on but there's something good on the telly and I'm having a drink.


- Good stuff, Ren, just two (of many) excuses why one should pass on reading my drivel. Keep her lit.


Quoted from SteveDiablo
The opening is a mixed bag.
I get what you mean, but it's a very awkward scene.
No, it's just awkwardly set.


- Not sure what you mean by "awkwardly set". Perhaps you will elaborate if you read the script and post your thoughts.


Quoted from SteveDiablo
I tried opening this at home and it works fine, sorry about that.
I will give it a read ( bet you can't wait) and write a few thoughts later.


- Its all good. I'm glad you were able to get it sorted. Looking forward to seeing what you think should you check it out.

Col.


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rendevous
Posted: May 25th, 2015, 9:45am Report to Moderator
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"Good stuff, Ren, just two (of many) excuses why one should pass on reading my drivel. Keep her lit."

You always make me smirk, you cheeky bollocks. I like your stuff. It's good. I'll come back to this. Whether you like it or not. I might indeed be lit at the time.

R


Out Of Character - updated


New Used Car

Green

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The Deuce - OWC - now on STS

Other scripts here
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rendevous
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I'm not lit. But I might be later. See how it goes.

I said I'd come back to this when I had time. I like to keep my word, despite my reputation. It's all lies, your honour.

Not really my subject, but that shouldn't stop me. I might learn something.

Reminded me a little of The Casual Vacancy. The book I mean, haven't seen the TV version. Heard it didn't go down too well, so I'm not casting aspersions.

I see the word 'parish' being bandied. I presume we're in the auld country. Glancing back, I should have picked up on it earlier. I think it was the fact he was called Angus put me off the scent.

Dialogue's good, believable. You've always had a knack at drawing well defined characters. I really quite enjoyed him practising for the radio while he was getting dressed.

I thought it was going good up to the radio station. Might be me, but I think that bit needs some trimming, as it felt long. Especially compared to the length of previous scenes. Don't get me wrong, a lot of it is very good and I don't know where you'd cut. The messiah bit is rather inspired. But you get what I mean.

It's picky, but I'm fairly sure you lose the 'e' and should stick an apostrophe in witch's hat. I only mention it as you use it a few times.

At first I wasn't having a good time reading this. I'm interested in politics, but not usually in fictional politicians. But it grew on me. There's lots of gentle humour, the type of stuff that makes the pages go by faster.

I think you're a bit too fond of... Ellipses are useful. But overuse should be avoided. And they definitely need a space after them.

I liked the line about the view of page 4 / 5. Made me laugh out loud. It's exactly what people say there, way too often.

I have to question the wisdom of putting a Ted in such a humorous Irish story. I suppose if he's different enough and no Dougals, Jacks or Bishop Len Brennans also appear, you might get away with it. They're still showing it all around the world all the time. Maybe you're referencing, or not. But even for such a small part, I'd stray away.

Also wondering about the POV in Mrs. Hogan's house. I think you're cheating a bit with headings. Hang on, I'm gonna read it again. Hmm, on second thoughts I think you got away with it. Adding a new heading would kinda mess it up. You did well there.

I did rather enjoy this. Some nice topping and tailing going on. And a lot of the dialogue is very good, some of it is great. You could do a series of these. God knows they've made series about a lot less. Hmm, that last bit sounded a lot better in my head.

Not bad at all. Rather good.

R


Out Of Character - updated


New Used Car

Green

Right Back

The Deuce - OWC - now on STS

Other scripts here

Revision History (1 edits)
rendevous  -  June 5th, 2015, 8:46am
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Colkurtz8
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Ren

Thanks for checking this out, brother, much appreciated.


Quoted from rendevous
Not really my subject, but that shouldn't stop me. I might learn something.


- Iíve seen you say this a few times in your reviews and it make me curious as to what is your thing. What makes McManus tick, floats his junk about, rocks his world, turns him on, gets his juices flowing and so on and so forth...storytelling wise of course.


Quoted from rendezvous
Reminded me a little of The Casual Vacancy. The book I mean, haven't seen the TV version. Heard it didn't go down too well, so I'm not casting aspersions.


- Never seen, read nor heard of it to be honest. I see its Rowlingís first foray into adult fiction. It passed me by.


Quoted from rendezvous
I see the word 'parish' being bandied. I presume we're in the auld country. Glancing back, I should have picked up on it earlier. I think it was the fact he was called Angus put me off the scent.


- Yup, its one the few scripts Iíve written that is firmly set in Ireland. Angus is more of a Scottish name I know but itís an amusing handle that I wanted to get in there. Its derived from the Gaelic name ďAonghasĒ, in case youí werenít wondering... I mean, why would you?


Quoted from rendezvous
Dialogue's good, believable. You've always had a knack at drawing well defined characters. I really quite enjoyed him practising for the radio while he was getting dressed.


- Cool, thanks. Yeah, I tried to get a bit of humour out of his dutiful rehearsals while giving you an idea of what type of guy he is.


Quoted from rendezvous
I thought it was going good up to the radio station. Might be me, but I think that bit needs some trimming, as it felt long. Especially compared to the length of previous scenes. Don't get me wrong, a lot of it is very good and I don't know where you'd cut. The messiah bit is rather inspired. But you get what I mean.


- A few have said this and my response has been the same in that I wanted to reflect the nature of these type of interviews. They are extremely dull and perfunctory with the politician laying out his mandate...not before prefacing it with some horribly forced bio to ingratiate themselves to the electorate. I wrote this during the local election last summer but specifically got the idea when hearing one of these interviews on the radio in the car with my dad. It was pathetic, a cringe worthy experience for all concerned but at least I got a script out of it.

Frankly, Iím disappointed that more people havenít picked up on this and just automatically judge it as too long because the rule of thumb for scenes is ďto start late, get out earlyĒ. That holds some value of course and is a good guideline to adhere to in many scenarios but itís not always the case, not always the primary objective of a scene. Sometimes a scene is protracted for a reason, itís operating on a different level other than entertainment or moving the story along as quickly as possible.

Angusís ramblings during the interview again give us a window into the type of person and candidate he is. Plus, they vary tellingly in certain parts to the lines he fed Colm in the car so that although heís is a bit of a dope, he is still playing the political game, cultivating a PR persona. It was important to show he's not a complete fool because then you'd wonder how he would've gotten this far. Although I see Sheila as the real driving force behind his campaign, she has to constantly re-steer him in the right direction when he veers off track.

I see the scene as going though five movements: Angus talking about himself...his competing candidates...his polices to which Phil brings up the ďwitchĒ printing error but Angus deflects this and gets back talking righteously about the changes he will bring... his slogan... before he makes the ďmessiahĒ slip up. So there is a progression itís just that a lot of verbose padding happens en route because this is inherent to his character and the circumstances. What do politician have at the end of the day only their words and how they spin them?

Remaining true to those elements at the risk of an extended scene is totally justified in my opinion.

Iím glad you liked the messiah bit. As Iíve said to others I couldíve easily went a sexist, homophobic or racist comment... or just threw in an f-bomb but I intentionally made Angusís mistakes inconsequential and minor as a way to comment on the outrage, shaming culture we live in today where people are excoriated for saying the most innocuous things. A slip of the tongue can go viral in minutes and the perpetrator is vilified and ruined within hours thanks primarily to the self administered judge, jury and executioner mentality of social media... but itís ok, that person will give a heartfelt apologise on Jimmy Kimmel the following night and all is well again in the world.


Quoted from rendezvous
It's picky, but I'm fairly sure you lose the 'e' and should stick an apostrophe in witch's hat. I only mention it as you use it a few times.


- I concur, good catch. Cheers.


Quoted from rendezvous
At first I wasn't having a good time reading this. I'm interested in politics, but not usually in fictional politicians. But it grew on me. There's lots of gentle humour, the type of stuff that makes the pages go by faster.


- Good, I thought you might appreciate the humour, glad you go some amusement out of it.

Quoted from rendezvous
I think you're a bit too fond of... Ellipses are useful. But overuse should be avoided. And they definitely need a space after them.


- Yeah, Iíve had this conversation with people before but I stick by them. Theyíre very useful to convey phrasing in the dialogue and breaking up the action in the prose. Iíll look into putting a space after them though. Thanks.


Quoted from rendezvous
I liked the line about the view of page 4 / 5. Made me laugh out loud. It's exactly what people say there, way too often.


-Yeah, much like Alan Partridge, Angus is a celebrator of the mundane, he champions the ordinary!


Quoted from rendezvous
I have to question the wisdom of putting a Ted in such a humorous Irish story. I suppose if he's different enough and no Dougals, Jacks or Bishop Len Brennans also appear, you might get away with it. They're still showing it all around the world all the time. Maybe you're referencing, or not. But even for such a small part, I'd stray away.


- I love the show in question but never even thought of it to be honest. Itís just because Ted is such a common name around my parts.


Quoted from rendezvous
I did rather enjoy this. Some nice topping and tailing going on.


- Yeah the bookend scenes with the two sets of women were to show that fickle nature of public perception. Perhaps itís a little overt but I was mainly going for humour with their terribly shallow and superficial remarks.


Quoted from rendezvous
You could do a series of these.


- Of just Angus? I dunno, I hoped it would be a self contained story in its own right. The outcome of the election isnít really the central concern of the script but more the absurdity of the political circus itself and the society (dys)functioning around it.

Thanks again for taking the time and sharing your thoughts. Glad you got a kick out of it.

Col.


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