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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board  /  Comedy Scripts  /  Dirty Old Bastards
Posted by: Don, October 5th, 2009, 8:57pm
Dirty Old Bastards by Terrence Huang - Comedy - A post-college slacker working as the events coordinator and self-elected drug dealer at a retirement home follows an aging World War II vet on a quest to find an alien spaceship. 118 pages - pdf, format 8)
Posted by: Orange, October 15th, 2009, 3:22pm; Reply: 1
I got bored of reading this at page 50. Mostly because it fell under the bar of believability and after that there isnt much left.

It started out okay, I feel like you need to work on your dialogue and character relationships a little more. In the beginning its hard to pinpoint how the nameless woman feels about Garbo. First she's completely willing to go against her job and dump a giant ball of ....crap essentially into earths atmosphere...then she acknowledges him as an idiot who can't do his job correctly SECONDS before she pushes the button. It doesn't make sense.

It would make more sense if she accidentally hit the button, because of something Garbo did and instead of mentioning it, then decide to cover it up. As opposed to willingly putting their jobs on the line in the first place and doing something that stupid then not telling anyone.

Format is okay as well, nothing too big. Other than a crap ton of "WE's" and a few scene misheadings, I.e make sure the place where you say  your characters are, is really where they are.

For example:

PAGE 8 :
"The old man turns around to reveal his naked backside. We are
disgusted."

Are We?

and

INT. HALLWAY - MOMENTS LATER
Alex and Liz walk back to Alexís room.

That is a  confusing scene setup. Pick where you want the characters to be. If you want them to be in the hallway, have the scene in the hallway, in his room have the scene in his room. You canít set up a scene and then have the character MOVE into a different location without setting up the new location. It's confusing and it slows the reading down, which is bad.


Also, work on your descriptions. There was a few paragraphs I read in which I felt half of it was unnecessary and/or redundant in relation with the following dialogue..

Examples:

A TELEVISION SET. The channels are changing quickly, but we see
that we are passing shows that are only ever on during the middle
of the day, the kinds of shows that are only there to fill the
pathetic lives of those who have nothing else: Maury, commercials
for trade school, Sesame Street, old reruns of the Fresh Prince
of Bel Air. We settle on the Tyra Banks Show.

I understood what you meant by the end of "only ever on during the middle of the say"...everything after that is fluff that is unnecessary and a pain to read.

and on Page 41:

Alex and Sully are now quietly gazing at the stars. They are clearly sleepy, but want to continue a conversation.

ALEX
Iím sleepy, but I donít want to
sleep.

It's redundant, you can come up with something better for him to say.


The thing that made me stop reading however is the set up you gave for the main plot of this story, him following Sully to look for an Alien spaceship.

So they are high and talking and it's late and Sully is falling asleep and Alex sees a bright light go across the screen and he says this:

ALEX
(Still too stoned to think
straight)
What was that?
(Beat)
Oh, my god, was that...
(Beat)
Ah, Iím just so...sleepy.

I'm sorry but i find it hard to believe that someone could be high to the point where they see someone get shot and then feel the need to go to sleep or play video games. That's what this feels like, he sees something unnerving, or that is how you are presenting it, and then decides to go to sleep. Then in the morning he wakes up and it hits him, OH MAN I THINK I SAW AN ALIEN CRASH! and he goes around freaking out. That delayed reaction i feel is completely unbelievable. It would make more sense if he saw it, joked about it and then went to sleep then woke up and thought, maybe this is really what it was? sat on it for a while, had a conversation with Sully and then agreed to go help him look for the space ship. Even if he didn't believe it was so. That's my feelings about that.

There were a few funny lines that made me laugh and  a few parts where i though the scenes and dialogue were really well written. Other than all that, up to what I read was okay.

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