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  Author    Pearl Dive  (currently 7716 views)
Don
Posted: June 27th, 2007, 7:14pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Pearl Dive by Mark Lyons (rc1107) - Short, Dark Drama - Tenses rise for a woman returning home for the birth of her nephew, who is the result of a rape. 20 pages - pdf, format


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Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Don  -  March 28th, 2011, 5:50pm
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Seth
Posted: June 28th, 2007, 2:16am Report to Moderator
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Hey mark,

Very interesting script . Excellent story -- fantastic ending. My only problem was with some of the descriptives as noted below.

PAGE 1

As you probably know, with a spec script, you want to present a quick, easy read. With this in mind, you might consider avoiding unnecessary words --

"ELLIE CUNNINGHAM, in her early thirties..." Etc. Also, given that your slug line identifies the scene as taking place in a hallway, there's little reason to, again, in the action block, tells us that it's taking place in a hall. We already know.

"Soon" isn't necessary. If a word can be removed without loss of meaning, cut it.

Lots of adverbs -- briskly, soon, abruptly, instead, reluctantly, quickly, noticeably, sadly, slowly, lovingly, immediately, seductively, heavily, passionately, awkwardly, roughly, softly, finally, gently.

Below is a quote from http://www.aidtopia.com/fiction/regexp.html  

It explains the evils of adverbs better than I can, so...

"Adverbs, especially those ending in -ly, often weaken writing. Eliminate the adverb whenever possible. In many cases you should be able to find a more precise verb.

Example:

Suddenly, the thief came at me with the knife.
The thief charged at me with the knife.

I hope you agree the second sentence is better. I find that when I draft action scenes, I have a tendency to overuse adverbs like suddenly, quickly, and immediately.

Removing the adverbs speeds up the action. Short quick sentences and paragraphs are better at increasing the tension than these adverbs."

PAGE 2

"Ellie stares in nostalgia at her nephew." This line confused me. What does she hold a nostalgia for?

PAGE 3

"The two embrace each other." Just a another example of where a cut could be made.

PAGE 4

"Ellie begins to get noticeably upset now." There's no need to tell us that she's "noticeably" upset. If she's upset, but we didn't notice, it'd be irrelavant -- it couldn't be recorded.

"Jenna sadly nods her head and wipes away a slow tear." That Jenna wipes away a tear tells us that she's sad. That said, sadly is redundant. Also, head isn't necessary in that nods, by definition, means to "lower and raise the head quickly." Cut, cut, cut.

PAGE 5

NEXT NIGHT -- I've never seen this at the end of a slug line. I'm not sure it's appropriate. In fact, many of your slug lines seem off.

INT. HOSTESS STAND

Does the scene takes place inside the hostess stand? If not, you might just want to write INSIDE, meaning the restaurant.

PAGE 8

ELLIE goes nympho. This was a surprise. I hope there's a reason, a  payoff. (having read further -- Oh, there is, and it's a good one!)

PAGE 9

Ellie puts her head to the back of Vito's head and roughly forces him to kiss her." If her head is positioned behind his, how are the two, as you go on to say, able to "gnash their teeth a few times..."?


Seth


Scripts

Stranger Than Yesterday
Diplopia

And Sweetie XD



Revision History (3 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Seth  -  June 28th, 2007, 2:40am
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Helio
Posted: June 29th, 2007, 11:06am Report to Moderator
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Better to die with vodka than with tedium!

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Hey Mark I'm not sure about it...I think wasn't necessary Ellie go to the toilet with Vito...unlees she wanted taste something diferent.

The flashs with the baby I think you have to open another scenes with him.

And finally the final scenes were a little compicate to understand...maybe because I was so excited with sex descriptions that I got lost.

all in all it was a good try anyway.
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Scar Tissue Films
Posted: June 29th, 2007, 5:40pm Report to Moderator
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It's a good script. The only thing that stops it being great is the fact that the logic isn't tight enough.

SPOILERS.

There is no way Ellie would get away with just gunning him down in his apartment. She's been seen at the restaurant, she's left her DNA all over the flat and all over the potential victim.

It also borders on the unbelievable that she would be so intimate with such a guy, even knowing there is such a reason.

Realistically she could just gun him down in the street and people would assume it was a mugging.

Perhaps you could transplant the scene to a Public Park or something? You know she follos him from work and makes the meeting appear spontaneous. That would cover that polt-hole.

Rick.
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mgj
Posted: June 30th, 2007, 7:18pm Report to Moderator
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This is a pretty good, straight forward revenge tale with a 'cringe' nice payoff.  

I think it would be more effective if you concealed Ellie's motivation until later on though.  Instead of opening, as you do, with the scene at the hospital - where we learn of her reasons for wanting to get back at this guy - perhaps you could use flashbacks to slowly reveal this to us as the story unfolds.  Then the surprise wouldn't just be on Vito but the audience as well.  Just a suggestion anyway.  

I might also make Ellie flirt a little with Vito at her table when they first meet.  She could at least give a hint of her intentions before she jumps him in the bathroom.  

Hope this helps.



"If at first, the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it." - Albert Einstein
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rc1107
Posted: October 22nd, 2007, 9:58am Report to Moderator
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Oh yeah... if anybody's written anything new in the past couple months, please post what I missed so I could go check it out.


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Mr.Z
Posted: December 25th, 2007, 12:53pm Report to Moderator
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Ouch! You cruel bastard!

I must say that this revenge tale was pretty well crafted. Iíve got no major complains here and I enjoyed it pretty much.

Just a couple of suggestions about minor details:

-I felt like this ended a fraction of a section too early. Vito going hard at the fake pussy was fine, but I think you should end with him screaming or with the look in his face in order to round up the whole point of Ellieís plan.

-In the last pages of this tale you jump back and forth in time pretty much. For a brief moment I was confused but then I got what you were doing here. The way this was writen (with scene headings telling exactly what happens earlier and what happens later) really helped me.

But have something in mind: the audience just watches the movie, they canít read the script (and its clarifications). What looks complicated on the page, usually is complicated plus one on screen. I wonder if the shuffled timeframe would be understandable on screen. Canít tell for sure since I already read this and got it.
Just something to consider.

Just minor points as you can see. The important stuff works fine. Although -browsing through the previous comments- I must say that I liked Mike's suggestion about concealing the protagonists' motives for a while. Something to think about.

This was a good read. Good job, man.


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Hoody
Posted: December 29th, 2007, 9:30am Report to Moderator
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Hey there, I owe you a review and since I've already reviewed the Glim Dropper script, I thought I'd read this one.

First of all, that ending.............wow.  I'd expect something like that to make me laugh out loud but I actually cringed.  Brilliant!

No major complaints on the story, it's a pretty straight forward revenge tale and I really enjoyed it.  There's just a bunch of minor things that you could improve upon it to make it seem more logical and better it:

-I don't like her saying "He's so fucking precious" about the baby.  It just doesn't sound right.  I have no problem with the word, it just doesn't sound right talking about a baby.

-Condom is spelt with an "o".  Wasn't sure if there were multiple spellings used by different countries but I thought I'd add it.

-Jenna doesn't seem to have an immediate reaction to Ellie asking about the father.  I also think that she gives in to telling her the little story too quickly.  It has to be a painful memory and it seems kinda rushed for pacing's sake.  I, for one, don't really think that works in emotional scenes like this one.  That's just me, though.

-Also, there's no mention of her going to the cops.  I know the revenge angle is a better story but I think she at least has to try and persuade Jenna to go to the cops.  And then what you can do is have Jenna not wanting to cooperate and Ellie realizing that she's gonna have to take it into her own hands.

-I think the more commonly used term is "squirt", not "spray".  They pretty much sound the same so it's just a matter of what sounds better in the dialogue.  I think "squirt" does.

-I don't know if this is a solidified rule but when a character is talking to someone on a phone, the character on the other end usually has a "(V.O.)" beside their name.  Nothing big but it will save space because there will be no need to write "(filtered)" underneath every time.

-I don't see a need for the flashes of the baby.  I think we already understand her motive at that point.  That is if it was meant to be flashed on-screen.  It's kind of written like it flashes in her head and we don't see it-- which is a no-no.

That's about it, I think.

So all in all, I really liked the story.  I don't think it needs any major rewrites, just go back and polish up a few things and it will be even better.  I'll review your other script when I find the time.


Please, read Elvis The Goat or Cold Turkey.  Thanks in advance and I'll make sure to review your script in exchange.
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Murphy
Posted: December 30th, 2007, 7:24am Report to Moderator
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Hi Mark,

I wanted to read one of your stories as you gave me such a good and honest review of my script "Saving Amy Ryan", Thanks for your feedback and kind words, very much appreciated.

So onto Pearl Dive, first question - Why the name? Maybe it is a US thing but I don't quite get it (unless i am being really really thick?).

I really liked your story, I love revenge flicks and they are probably my favorite movie genre of all - if done right, however so many fail to deliver at the end which I think it very easy to do in this genre, the whole second act is usually building up to something incredible and as a consequence if the climax is not incredible it can be very disappointing.

I like the way you developed the story and built it well towards the climax, It was very well written and the dialogue seemed on the whole very realistic. But I was a bit disappointed in the end but only because you built it up so well. The tension you built was fantastic, the bathroom scene really does help to build that up and I really thought that the guy was going to suffer in a big way. It did leave me with some questions that i feel if addressed would make this script much stronger.

* How did she not know that her Sister was pregnant?, I found this very hard to believe and ore mystified as to why you felt it necessary to add this in? The story would not have suffered had she known about her sisters pregnancy and just turned up for the birth. If you were just using it as a way for the sister to admit she was raped then how about a much darker beginning but one that would work better and have her reject the baby once it is born, as soon as she see's his eyes or whatever she would break down and admit to her sister what happened. This would create a level of tension that could easily send the sister on her mission.

* Where did the gun come from? Is she the kind of person who carries a gun with her? If so then why did she not use it?  The ending was a let-down to me, She was loading a gun presumably to blow his dick off or something and instead decided to stick a paper clip in his sex toy? It just does not add-up to be honest and added some humor into a story that did not seem to need it. I would rather you had stuck to the ending it seemed to be building up to, although of course that does lead to many questions that have already been asked - how she ever thought she would get away with it. Maybe lose the gun completely and hint that she was there to humiliate him instead of blowing him away.

Anyway hope you don't mind my feedback, It was a great story and is definitely up with the best stories I have read on this site.

Thanks Murphy






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rc1107
Posted: January 4th, 2008, 2:46pm Report to Moderator
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      Hey Matias,

I was just sitting down to do the rewrite for this before I checked these posts again and I was thinking about adding a reaction to Vito's little surprise.  I tried to when I first wrote it, but everything I came up with made it seem a little too comical to me.  Don't get me wrong, everytime I read the ending, for some reason I still laugh heartily after my cringing's done.  (I also grab my crotch while cringing I've noticed, also.)

But, I think I came up with something that'll work as a reaction.  I still have some more to work on with the rest of the story, so I probably won't repost this for a few more weeks.

I'm also going to be tweaking with the time shuffling, too, hopefully to fix up some of the confusion the audience will see.  Of course, I'll probably have to use some photography and camera techniques, but I figured out a way to word it without telling the camera what to do.

Thank you very much for taking a look at this.  I'm glad that you enjoyed it.

      Hoody,

Done.  'He's so fucking precious' is gone.  Everytime I was reading that after I posted, the more it occured to me that line seems out of place.  I actually based Ellie on a really good friend of mine, and that's how she talks.  (That's why I'm really good friends with her.  I like girls who have dirty mouths.  You should hear her say cocksucker.  It's so damn sexy.)  For her to say that in that moment, though, is a real distraction.

And while we're talking about words, you're right, 'squirt' does sound better than 'spray', so that's being changed, too.  But, just for the record, they're both sexy, but I think a girl spraying is a lot sexier then a girl squirting.  Squirting is just a single stream or two, but I was with my friend (the one with the potty mouth) the first time she ejaculated, and she actually sprayed.  In one shot, she nailed not only me, who was directly in front of her, but also my dresser mirror and my Michael Madsen 'Reservoir Dogs' poster that was on the wall way to the right of us.

But squirt does sound sexier, though, so I'll go with that.  Plus, some people might take spraying as peeing on him, and I don't want to ruin the premise for my next screenplay*.

Thank you guys for your insights and kindness.

- Mark


* - Just kidding**.

** - For now.


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rc1107
Posted: January 4th, 2008, 3:38pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Murphy,

I'm referring to you seperately because I wanted to do a little bit more web-searching before answering your first question.  Unfortunately, for the tenth time, I still couldn't find the definition that I was taught of Pearl Diving.


Quoted from Murphy
So onto Pearl Dive, first question - Why the name? Maybe it is a US thing but I don't quite get it (unless i am being really really thick?).


There is a definition of pearl diving I did find on the web, but it's not the same pearl diving that I was referring to.

The one I found is (I'll speak scientifically so hopefully nobody will be offended) when a guy ejaculates in a woman's mouth, and then they kiss, swapping the semen back and forth in their mouths.  I always referred to that as snowballing, but I'm sure there's other people who have other names for it.

That's not the definition I heard, though.

Are you ready?  Here it goes:

I had a friend who was telling me about some of his experiences in Iraq.

They came across a couple of young Iraquii men who had grotesquely told them about a common masturbation practice they had over there called 'pearl diving'.

They would take the wax from a candle and whittle it down to a very sharp point.  Once it was needle thin, they would stick the wax into the tip of their penis and slide it down.

(I'm wincing from just writing this.)

Apparently, this causes an incredible sensation and causes an intense orgasm and ejaculation.

My stomach's aching from just imagining this.

As for the legitamacy of the story, I don't know if it's an actual practice over there or not.  They might have just been messing with them.

As for if it actually causes orgasm and ejaculation, I, for one, will never find out for myself.

Anyway, thank you very much for reading this and I'm sorry I failed a little bit in the end.  You mentioned some very good points that kind of opened up the story for me.  I'll address them in a pm to you.

As for when you said why did she not use the gun when she had gone through all the trouble...  I could see how I didn't convey her reason for not shooting him enough.

Notice how she changes her mind after she finds her wedding ring and kisses it?  At that point, she realizes what she's doing and has a moment of clarity of the consequences.  She'll never be with her husband again and she'll never be able to hang out with her nephew.

I was hoping people would think it was a let down with no violence at the end.  But, then, I thought the people would be rewarded with a very sickening moment at the end.  At least to me, it's sickening.  Humorous, but sickening.

I got a lot of work to do in making that more clear also.

Hopefully, if you come across Meladori, which just got posted a few days ago, that one won't be a let down.

Thanks for everything Murphy, and I'll be in touch.

- Mark


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Murphy
Posted: January 4th, 2008, 4:46pm Report to Moderator
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Now I get you, the Pearl dive sounds disgusting - unfortunately I cannot test it out as we have no candles in our apartment for some reason. I will buy some later today Or maybe not.

I may owe you an apology because now you mention it i remember the ring bit but like an idiot never put as much significance into it - my bad and of course a sudden jolt of reality is a good way to pull yourself back from the edge of someplace dark.

You probably think I am full of BS but I swear its the truth i have actually had 'Meladori' here open on my desktop for the last hour ready for a read, Just gonna get to it it a moment.

Due to completely overdoing it over Christmas, last night was the first Friday night in a long time we have not been out on the raz, I tried to go to bed early and just could not sleep (my missus snores) so got up for a ciggie and a quick read and here I am it's 6.40am here in Aus and I am still not tired, I have managed to catch-up on some scripts though which is good - hence your one. But next week I don't care I am getting drunk!

Cheers Murphy
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dkw208
Posted: January 23rd, 2008, 1:08am Report to Moderator
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hey, this was the tightest script of yours i've read.  delivered a very nice end and everything was set-up.  the only thing, and i'm not even sure this is a problem,i might be just reaching, that i'm unsure of is it seems the conversation about the rape would have come up much earlier than the actual day of the delivery.  i'm not sure how i feel about the whole thing taking place in day or two, because so much happens.  i did enjoy it and breeze right through it, however.


please read:
canyon lake-21 pages - american gem quarterfinalist (contest ongoing):
http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1200534890/



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rc1107
Posted: January 23rd, 2008, 1:19pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Kumar,

Thanks for taking a look at this one and I'm glad you liked it.

I breathed a sigh of relief when you said you breezed right through it.  I was kind of worried about the length.  This is a rewrite from the original version I posted, which was only 13 pages.  When I sat down to do the rewrite, I planned on trimming it down for a smoother read.  Which I did trim about three pages off, but somehow, along the way, another 8 pages got added just to push the build-up a little more.

Yeah, what you've pointed out is a real hang-up I had trying to figure out.  I tried stressing in the sisters' conversation that Ellie was just too busy with work and her life that she didn't get a chance to be there for Jenna, but you're right, they would've at least talked over the phone about Jenna's situation.  I thought about adding that phone scene, but figured there would just be too much time jumping from nine months ago until the present, especially with all the time jumping just going on in those two days.

But, I really wanted to add the scene where Jenna rejects her baby and then explains herself to her sister in person to see both their reactions together.

I'm also glad to see that you didn't seem confused by the time jumping in those two days, or between Ellie's plant and Vito's masturbation.  There were a few that had complained about that in the first post of this.

Anyhow, thanks again for taking a read and I actually did read Canyon Lake last night.  I was just going to take another browse through it and going to reply to it when I signed on.  (Sometimes, when I read something, I like to let it stew a little bit before I form any opinions or judgments about it.)

I'll see ya around.

- Mark


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dkw208
Posted: January 23rd, 2008, 3:34pm Report to Moderator
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hey, i think what might work best is if you play around with time a little more.  not necessarily going back and forth to confuse us, but maybe show more scenes.  You can even show an earlier scene (maybe even a flashback) that takes place after the rape where ellie asks jenna 'who did this?' but jenna wont say who.  then, after the delivery, jenna finally confides.  that way, it would eliminate the problem of why it took so long for ellie to find out.  and i personally would prefer if you didn't add the phone cponversation.  one, for such heavy stuff, a phone call seems too impersonal (even if they are long distance, it doesn't register strongly on screen), and two, viewers know phone calls usually tend to be purely for expositionaly purposes, and are inherently uninteresting.  i know my suggestions makes you re-write a script which i've already described as 'tight', but they're just suggestions.  with a script like this, it's obviously tough to tell if audiences would forgive a minor hang-up like that or not until it's actually filmed (kind of like with pirates of the caribbean, will the audience care that the ghosts couldnt be killed?  clearly, they didn't)  


please read:
canyon lake-21 pages - american gem quarterfinalist (contest ongoing):
http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1200534890/



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