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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board    Unproduced Screenplay Discussion    Short Scripts  ›  Blood in the Rain Moderators: bert
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  Author    Blood in the Rain  (currently 1263 views)
Don
Posted: November 1st, 2011, 6:16pm Report to Moderator
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So, what are you writing?

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Blood in the Rain by Jeremy S. Noe (jerrynoe_17) - Short, Crime-noir -  A man leaves a bar after a conversation and in a tragic twist of irony, experiences what the conversation was about. 11 pages - pdf, format


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You will miss 100% of the shots you don't take.
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Revision History (2 edits; 1 reasons shown)
Don  -  November 16th, 2011, 5:52pm
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13thChamber
Posted: November 2nd, 2011, 11:01am Report to Moderator
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- Jeremy

Only problems here were the ending (my opinion) and the use of "Continued" at the top of the pages.

Get rid of the continues, it can be distracting. The ending was meh. Maybe I didn't get it completely, it just seemed like it ended too soon, and without real resolve.

Overall, I liked this one alot. Your dialogue flowed nicely, even the chunkier bits. The story was solid, just the ending was kind of "meh" for me. Good job though, kept me interested all the way through.


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darrentomalin
Posted: November 2nd, 2011, 1:59pm Report to Moderator
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A good read but a little too "novelly" needs streamlining as some of it was over described.  I too didn't "get it" the psycho at the end came out of the blue and who actually shot Bridges? so I agree with 13thChamber on the ending.
THe continueds at the top need turning off, as does the title on each page - all distracting.
Some of Pam's dialogue was too chunky.
The other thing is the time period, I was unaware for several pages what time period it was set in and then Bridges put his rain coat and fedora on and I had to rewind to the start to put the scenes into a 50's perspective.
A bit of obvious 50's colour at the start might correct that.

On the positive, the atmosphere was excellent, stranger's dialogue was creepy and well played out.
I enjoyed reading it and wanted to keep reading to find out what was going to happen.
The premise was great and with a bit of tightening would make a great script.

I am unfamiliar with the short story so any critique regarding dialogue and ending may be off point.

Daz


http://darrentomalin.webs.com/index.htm

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screenplay_novice
Posted: November 17th, 2011, 3:12am Report to Moderator
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I have no idea why my PDF software is putting CONTINUED at the top of the pages. It never did it before. I'll have to toy around with it and see if I can correct it. The story itself isn't set in any specific decade so I tried to covey that by describing Pam as being someone who could fit in with the 80s or 90s, and Bridges, though he wears a raincoat and fedora, could still fit in in any decade. My brother and I wear fedoras from time to time.
In the short story, you never learn who shot Bridges. All you really know is that it wasn't The Stranger. All we really get to learn about him is that he's one demented scumbag. My cousin wrote this story for his Ebook called Dig Ten Graves, published by Trestle Press. All of his stories have some sort of message, whether it's the every man doing the irrational to prove a point, or reflecting over past sins and trying to make up for it, or a character reflects whatever he's experiencing emotionally, physically, and spiritually at the time.
I felt the story was one of pure irony. I had a hard time trying to end the short without it being too hurried. My cousin didn't want me to stray too far from his original work and was pleased with the way it turned out. The dialog between the stranger and Bridges I had to lengthen a great deal. In the original story, Bridges is tells it all through inner monologue in the first person, so I had to turn that into actual dialogue between he and Pam, who is a new character created on my part so that the inner dialog problem could be solved.
I love the story and I think this is some of my best writing to date. And I agree, a time period should be set for the story, and something more needs to happen at the end. I have an idea that's been buzzing around in my head for a couple of weeks now.
Thanks for the read and giving it a review.


If you can't beat 'em, then get yourself a bigger stick!
John Mavity
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James McClung
Posted: November 19th, 2011, 6:25pm Report to Moderator
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Hey Jeremy,

I'm afraid I wasn't much of a fan of this one. It has an interesting premise that would best be treated with simplicity. I'm not really sure you did that at all. I mean there's a lot of mystery to the characters and their respective motives, which I think was the right choice. But your writing drags and feels very overblown and is ultimately a disservice to your very basic premise, which you've elaborated nicely in your logline.

When I say the writing, I mostly mean the dialogue. However your descriptions needs to be tidied up as well. I believe in proper formatting when it yields smoother writing. Some rules are just there to be rules; they don't necessary serve much purpose. However, in regards to yours, you need to break up your paragraphs, watch your passive voice and clean up your orphans. Your story will flow better to the reader... you want that.

The paragraphs are the biggest issue here. I mean I really have to sigh every time I see a script open with an eight-liner. Break them up. Try to do so according to ideas. If you can sum up a given idea in one sentence, start a new paragraph. These aren't college essays. You can scatter your sentences. Try not to exceed four (fix, max) per paragraph. Same goes for lines.

If you fix your passive voice, I think most of these paragraphs will shrink, substantially. Avoid the use of "is" and "ing." Of course, it's not practical to do this all the time but you've many instances where you would benefit from it. In fact, active voice is probably better 99% of the time, if only to punch up your writing.

Orphans (single words which take up entire lines) are a minor nitpick but they're so easy to fix, I can't help but hone in on them. You really just need to tweak your wording slightly.

Your writing paints a nice picture but it's clunky. I think you can paint the same picture by removing the clunk. I really think you'll have to compromise very little, if anything, addressing these issues.

Okay, onto the dialogue. Let's start with Pam. Sorry, man. Her stuff came off as really forced. I mean, why would she waste so much time on this guy seeing him for the first time? I really didn't buy it and even if I did, I wouldn't buy how convenient all her responses to Bridges are. Her "fantasy" feels especially tacked on. I've got nothing against character foils but Pam might as well have FOIL written on her forehead.

I'd try to find a way to have more natural dialogue. I don't really know what to suggest other than a complete revamp. I suppose you can preserve the basic point that Bridges wants revenge on someone but you need to find a better way to get there.

One thing I might start with is have Bridges be a guy who's come into the bar many times before and behaved the same way. It'd make him an oddity. Pam might just be more inclined to come over out of curiosity. If it's a really dive-y bar, maybe she doesn't have as much to do. Basically, I'd establish that these two have some sort of limited knowledge of each other. They need not outright know each other.

Onto the stranger...

His introduction is really poor. Why draw out the scene so much having Bridges try to communicate that he's been shot. I understand that you want to establish the stranger's cruelty but his "tough break" line totally sends that home by itself. In fact, his coaxing of Bridges dilutes the impact of that line.

His whole "play along with my questions" schtick doesn't work at all either. "Are you in pain?" Not very interesting a question and it doesn't come off as cruel, just silly. As is his "medical fact."

Really, the whole scene is much more drawn out than it should be by the stranger trying to weedle responses out of a dying man who is, honestly, much too responsive. I dare say, this man could walk it off.

I think the stranger's curtness is crueler and more interesting than his more sadistic, manipulative behavior, which only serves to dilute his more interesting qualities. I'd exploit that more and cut back on his teasing. Have him answer the questions Bridges asks him and stick to the point.

As for the final image. Well, frankly, I found it... quite nice. Good job!

So yeah, man. Sorry to be harsh but I felt your execution was really poor. The story is great and you paint a nice picture but you need to tighten it up and make it feel less forced.

Hope this helps.


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screenplay_novice
Posted: November 29th, 2011, 7:44pm Report to Moderator
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Thanks James. I agree about the dialog and the long paragraphs. I read the script again last night and I'm already doing another outline. Gonna totally put a different spin on it. I think I can do it without smashing the original premise. I toyed with the idea of having Pam and Bridges knowing each other while I was writing the first couple of drafts. but thought it would be more interesting to have her be a stranger.
I do, however, have a cool idea about the stranger's relationship with Bridges. If I can do it right, it will work nicely. Also, I wanted the time period to be one in which, if filmed, could be the present, or the past. I think I'll make it the 50s. It's supposed to be a noir piece after all.
Thanks again for the feedback.


If you can't beat 'em, then get yourself a bigger stick!
John Mavity
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screenplay_novice
Posted: December 1st, 2011, 1:42am Report to Moderator
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I'm currently rewriting the script. It's going to be radically different from the original, but the concept is the same. I think I can stay true to the original story though I'm taking great leaps with the characters and situations. Wish me luck y'all!


If you can't beat 'em, then get yourself a bigger stick!
John Mavity
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screenplay_novice
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I read the script again last night (probably the hundredth time I've done so) and I can see where I can make some changes, but after considering it, I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out. I spoke to my cousin who allowed me to adapt it from his book and he stated that he was pleased, so I'm going to leave this version just as it is. However, the rewrite I'm working on changes it to a point that the original story isn't recognizable until the character of Bridges gets plugged.
I've tried to give it more of a story and make it a bit more complex, and in doing so, I might have killed it off. I'm going to finish it anyways within the week and then I'll post it to see what you all think. I really am content with the last draft. Has anyone here on the board ever written something that they were pleased with and then rewrote it and found that it didn't resemble the original version and wasn't what they expected? I'm afraid that is what is going to happen.
But, like I said, I'm going to finish it because I hate to leave something unfinished.


If you can't beat 'em, then get yourself a bigger stick!
John Mavity
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