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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board  /  February 2011 One Week Challenge  /  Captive - Feb 2011 OWC - Filmed
Posted by: Don, February 26th, 2011, 2:04pm
Captive by by Brian K. Millard (shootingduck) writing as Albert Gustaf Dahlman - Short - A motorist intervenes in an act of violence on a young girl and gets them both into a life and death situation, at the mercy of a malevolent masked madman.

A February 2011 One Week Challenge script. - pdf, format 8)

Posted by: Scar Tissue Films, February 28th, 2011, 8:57pm; Reply: 1
Pros

Great atmosphere.

Great imagery...good setting with a real horror texture.

Excellent mix of modern brutal, industrial horror with a strange supernatural undertone.

Fantastic ending.

Cons

Not totally sure there are any major ones....I don't thoroughly get what the Welder is doing during the action...seems he has some sort of a plan, but I don't fully see how that relates to the ending.

Be interesting to hear the author chime in on that.

Impressive effort.
Posted by: RayW, February 28th, 2011, 9:30pm; Reply: 2
Hi, Albert

Decent enough straight up story with a odd little circular thing going on there at the end.
The (unannounced) flashbacks regarding Jessica were... additional.
Don't really get the match thing.
Walden kinda pussed-out on the cell rather fast.
The whole "Tie you up in the living room while I putz around in the basement so you can escape" thing is a skosh cliche.

But I definitely do like the idea of "The big bad wolf ain't the baddest thing in town" scenario.
Personal fave of mine, actually.

Good writing, though.
Congratulations!
Posted by: stevie, February 28th, 2011, 9:41pm; Reply: 3
Yeah, this was pretty good. It only had touches of supernatural to it - but these could be developed as Rick noted.
The first three quarters its just your average kidnap/serial maniac/torture story but done well.

The flashbacks should have been marked as being flashbacks - the first one i thought walden had been dreaming everything up til then.

There is a tiny error in the lockup - Lark knows Walden's name?
Posted by: screenrider (Guest), February 28th, 2011, 9:46pm; Reply: 4
Okie dokie.  This one broke the camel's back.  No more horror OWC's for me.     Twisted plot, writing flowed, lots of white space.   Not much else to say.   I'm done.
Posted by: bert, February 28th, 2011, 9:50pm; Reply: 5
Checking in to see what Rick liked so much, I concur that this one is pretty tight.

Well-written, and your welder is an effective nemesis.

I am not sure that the flashbacks offer that much to the story, however, and your final turnabout is interesting, though Walden's actions do not make complete sense in this context.

Still I get what you are going for, and I think it is something that could be ironed out in a rewrite.

So, yeah.  Nice one.  I would give this one a recommend to people trying to decide which of these to read next.  Unless you have got tummy trouble like ol' Screenrider up there.
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., February 28th, 2011, 10:23pm; Reply: 6

This one worked well with The Welder being one of those evil dudes that, well, needs to have a get-up.  ;D

I thought it worked until here:

Walden’s eyes follow the length of the Welder’s intestines until he sees Lark, hunched over in the corner, EATING.

If Lark had this special ability, she wouldn’t have been in this predicament; thus it voids the premise. Also, she wouldn't have allowed her thumb to be broken.

I was confused by the part with Jennifer. Who was she?

Sandra

Posted by: c m hall, March 1st, 2011, 1:51am; Reply: 7
I very much liked the first three quarters of this -- liked the flashbacks, liked the dialogue and the strange mystery of the welder.  The ending seemed forced, to me, kind of a waste of good characters.
Posted by: leitskev, March 1st, 2011, 2:44am; Reply: 8
Excellent writing. My only problem is not understanding some things yet, I look forward to the explanation.

I don't get the flashback. Is it simply the case that Walden's wife...actually, scratch that. I have no clue. Will wait for the writer or smarter people to explain.

I also am not sure about why Walden becomes the new Welder. Actually I am missing a lot more than that now that I think about it. What is this creature? What was Welder doing? Was the girl a creature all along, or became one in the cellar? If she was the creature all along, she went through all of this why? And who was the Welder? Did I ask that already? I am completely lost now. I need cookies. Or better yet beer. This, though fantastically written, has left me exhausted.

Just one more thing: hasn't the welder thing been done before? I guess that doesn't matter.

Definitely an expertly written story on all levels. I just need someone to explain it to me.
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 1st, 2011, 3:09am; Reply: 9
I liked it.  It was definitely exciting and visual - as well as circular.  Had no problem understanding it - even got what the welder was up to.  So excellently done on the writing account.  

There was one thing I would have moved earlier and that is when he was at the welder's house - he should have made the phone call before he went to look.  Just going over there for a peek seemed less intelligent than he ought to be.

Production wise the only issue that will cost much are the head effects.  If they are going to give the impression of muscle and bone then they will need to be built and fitted.   I didn't see any stretches as far as actors would be concerned.  

So well done.
Posted by: DarrenJamesSeeley, March 1st, 2011, 3:40am; Reply: 10
If there is anything, and I do mean anything that could be wrong its FADE IN on the right. Once, not long ago, I got crucified on SS for that. Bugged the stuff outta everyone so I caved and put it left. You do know that if you flushed left this horror short would be outstanding? Don't worry too much though, it kicks @$$.

One of the best in this OWC.
I have nothing further to say, everyone upstairs pretty much covered it.

Posted by: wannabe (Guest), March 1st, 2011, 4:47am; Reply: 11
Expert writing.  Seriously.  The story was very cool and told so well.  I like the bookend open/close also.  

Not sure about the Welder thing though.  That came across menacing but vague.  Then Waldon becomes the welder and I just think that needs a little more clarity.  Why a welder's mask?  Maybe I missed the significance.

The flashes of Walden seeing his daughter were a little confusing.  Especially the first one.  I thought I somehow missed that he went home and had to reread.  I finally got it but it was a little confusing.

Anyway, I more than half way through all the entries and this one is by far my fave.  Very nice work.
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 1st, 2011, 5:02am; Reply: 12
I'm confused as to why people might be having trouble understanding the welders mask.  I wish I did, but I did not write this, yet I feel the need to defend the author here.

SPOILERS

The welders mask is a protective mask to cover up the acid-burned face of the "Welder".   At one point Walden (was that his name) falls into the green brew and his face burns leaving bone and fleshy bits.  Very much the same as the original "Welder" implying similar origins.  Also the author implies that the brew the "Welder" creates and possibly Lark's blood are caustic.  The fact that it's a welders mask probably is because whoever did this originally had one nearby and it fit the bill as being both protective and a cover-up.  
Posted by: leitskev, March 1st, 2011, 10:09am; Reply: 13
The Welder's mask was not one of the things I needed explained, but if you're in the mood, there are several things I didn't get. Just getting up, and I will reread, but my biggest problem was understanding the creature. Why was she tie up, despite her power? What was her relationship to the Welder? I might have a few more.

I also was not sure why Walden became the new Welder. His burns cannot be the only reason. I will look at it again, but would certainly welcome some revelation from someone...many thanks!
Posted by: leitskev, March 1st, 2011, 11:15am; Reply: 14
Just gave another careful read. My understanding is the same as it was, and I have the same questions.

spolier>>>

I'll start with what I know. The Welder is trying to kill Lark because she is some sort of foul creature that easts the entrails of people and animals. Apparently it will take a powerful acid concoction and a magical knife to destroy her. Walden confuses Lark as the victim and sets out to rescue her. Lark escapes from Welder, kills him; Walden gets burned by the acid and ends up in the position of Welder, trying to destroy the creature.

That much was all plain from the first read.

The questions begin with the flashback, and the writer has them there for a very important reason. It cannot be as simple as Welder's wife(not daughter, there was a waking in bed scene) was also killed by the creature, which encourages his desire to protect and rescue Lark, who ironically turns out to be the creature. It just can't.

This could be a clue: when he calls the police, he says he is on "some road". That made me wonder if this was a dream. Otherwise you would certainly know the road, have some idea. If Walden is local, he would definitely know the road. If he is not local, how did the creature kill his wife?

So the issue of the flashbacks is question number one for me.

Then I want to know how this creature is generally weak and frail, human; but occasionally mighty, such as when it kills wild dear and imposing Welder.

Finally, I would love to know what this creature is, something about it.

Ok, thanks. These are NOT criticisms of the work, but weaknesses in my own comprehension. If someone can shed led, I am grateful!
Posted by: leitskev, March 1st, 2011, 12:27pm; Reply: 15
I forgot to add that the killing of his wife by the creature is his motive for becoming the new Welder, the reason he wants to kill the creature. So you have the irony of these flashbacks being a possible motivation for wanting to save the girl, and then ironically being a reason to want to kill her later.

Just seems kind of coincidental that the creature who kills his wife later becomes so closely encountered. Might be acceptable though. Then the only thing I would change is have him know the name of the road he is on, since he would have to be a local. I guess that creates a problem of the police showing up. so maybe just kill the cell phone, have there be no service.
Posted by: Electric Dreamer, March 1st, 2011, 2:03pm; Reply: 16
I'll give you this much, you got me to fully reread the entire script.
Taut writing, crisp visuals, effective dialogue and an eye for detail.


***MASSIVE SPOILERS***


My spidey sense was tingling as Lark and Walden were back to back.
Something's amiss, she knows his name. Why does Welder stay silent?
Welder goes to the window earlier but not for the reason we think.
It's not because he "hears an intruder", he's expecting Walden, cute.
As the ending played out, it hit me where I've seen seen this before.

"Timecrimes". http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0480669/
The 2008 Spanish time loop thriller.
Right down to the cryptic flashbacks of his wife in mysterious peril.
And then I was reminded of "Triangle". http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1187064/
In both films the protag pursues a masked antag, only to discover, its themselves.
As both stories unfold, the protags descend into chaos and fulfill the time loops.

I'm all for established properties inspiring new stories, that can work out fine.
My last short did that very thing to take a new spin on an old ride.
However, I don't think it works quite as well when the concept is reversed.
To borrow liberally from another source for your ending, doesn't have the same effect.
It left me feeling flat after all the expertise you drilled into the script.

I don't claim to have everything figured out in this intensely labyrinthine tale.
But I do know my enjoyment was diminished by it invoking two feature films.
If that's not the case, I'd be shocked and apologize, the resemblances are striking.

In the end, I wonder if the script needed the loop at all.
I was immersed in your craft without all the fancypants timey whimey light show.
There's a lot of talent on display here, no doubt, you got some serious chops.
Ultimately, I felt like the kid that peeks behind the curtain and ruins the magic.

I respect the talent and effort, just wish I hand't seen those films first.

E.D.
Posted by: grademan, March 1st, 2011, 2:06pm; Reply: 17
CAPTIVE * I liked this one too * weird time flow * lighting a match as a way to ca1m down - never heard of that one before * clever naming of Walden and Welder * Lark’s role was nicely done * unclear as to what myth this was based on though * this script walked a fine line between clarity and confusion.
Posted by: Leon, March 1st, 2011, 3:06pm; Reply: 18
Excellent writing, great atmosphere, I think one of the best I've read so far.

I do have a few things that stuck out to me though.
Walden's flash backs felt a little unnecessary,  we see it is the monster that killed his wife, but he himself does not seem to engage that, so emotionally I felt it didn't pay off.

Why did Welder stab Walden?, makes him seem pretty evil
Posted by: Ryan1, March 1st, 2011, 6:32pm; Reply: 19
I wish I could say I enjoyed this as much as some of the others, but unfortunately I can't.  Maybe I'm just not seeing all the connections, but to me this was a story that became overly complicated.  The flashbacks seem unnecessary and I'm curious to find out what the author's intentions were with them.  I couldn't figure out when they were actually happening.  That same day?  Far in the past?  I assumed it was recent because Walden stumbled across the body of his wife, eaten by the creature.  But, how that figures into the circular nature of the plot, I don't know.  Another poster mentioned the significance of the dagger and I look forward to that explanation as well.  The final sentence:

"Walden grabs the dagger off the passenger seat, gets out..."

Puzzled me.  Was Walden the driver of the blue car or did that mean Walden, now the Welder, reached into the car and took the dagger?  And how did that dagger get into the car?  Seemed like a slug line was missing there.

All that being said, this was an extremely ambitious story.  You can tell real effort was put into the characters and the dialogue.  The structure is clever and intricate, but I just didn't buy the time loop at the end.  In my mind, there were too many unexplained loose ends.  I haven't seen the movies Brett mentioned, so maybe watching them would help illuminate the plot of this script.

But, you obviously struck a chord with some readers, so congrats on that.  Very well done for a week's time.
Posted by: khamanna, March 1st, 2011, 6:50pm; Reply: 20
I really liked the story and the way it was told.

I think it was too convenient though - Walden sees Welder hunting Lark, the creature and then Welder gets a hold of Walden and takes him to his house (apparently Walden saw Welder near his house) where the creature ate his love.
"eating Jessica" was a bit convenient.
Why Welder didn't kill Lark in the first place when he could? --this bothers me too.

The rest of it was clear. I really liked the pacing of this, very nicely done. Flashbacks didn't bother at all and came at the right places. ANd I liked the transitions too, overall it has an amazing flow.
Posted by: Eoin, March 1st, 2011, 7:25pm; Reply: 21
This was a story crafted by an experieced writer. Very professional and certainly knows their way around a script. A few little things were out of place. Don't know if have ever done some welding, but it's impossible to see through the glass on a welder mask. I thought this might be the newer LCD type that auto dims, but when you said it was blacked out and his eyes were visible, I was confused. Why the plastic apron with the rest of the leather welding gear? Didn't understand how the girl had put a hand print on the rear windscreen only to pulled out of the van in sack? I know, I'm nit picking. Overall, very enjoyable. Great job on completing the OWC.
Posted by: leitskev, March 1st, 2011, 7:50pm; Reply: 22
The story made much more sense to me today when I read with a clear head...if I got it right now! The flashbacks are mostly needed to give Walden the necessary motive to attack the creature at the end...to become the new Welder. They serve to humanize him perhaps, and encourage his heroic protectiveness of Lard, but those were just bonus elements. The real need for the flashback comes from fact that there needs to be a reason for Walden to dawn the mask and chase the creature.

It's a great effort, probably the best of the challenge I think. The flashback might present a problem. It seems necessary, and yet it tends to confuse. I think this would be the case with a film too, perhaps even more so. Prodding the reader/viewer to try to figure things like this out is good, gives the story depth. Question is if this goes too far, or could be made a smidge clearer.
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 1st, 2011, 10:44pm; Reply: 23
OK...read this and then read all the feedback and felt like I must have missed something.  Skimmed over it again, and came to the conclusion that it wasn't me who was missing anything, but everyone else.  We'll see when things are revealed.

First things first...this is well written for the most part.  Not great by any means, but very solid, especially compared to the vast majority of OWC entries, and actually, even compared to most SS shorts in general, so Kudos!

I think I know who wrote this, and if I'm right, this is leaps and bounds above what "he" has churned out up till now, so again, Kudos, if I'm correct.  I'm basing my assumptions on a few things...the action sequences (which are pretty good, but not quite there, IMO) and the way that the "generic" cars were given colors.  Again, we'll have to wait and see.

So, for me, this isn't anything to do with merging time lines or the like.  Other than the incorrectly not labeled Flashbacks, this all plays out just like it appears to.  Not sure why everyone feels differently.

I see this as a pretty generic/standard torture porn slasher type short, melded with some sort of creature Celtic myth in Lark.  It all works OK and again, is written pretty damn well, so I applaud you, but I do have issues that don't jive at all for me..but again, maybe I'm missing something.

Let's go back to those Flashbacks that aren't labeled.  It's something that irritates me.  If a scene is a Flashback or dream, it needs to be labeled as such.  No way around it.  If you're trying to fuck with your reader, I understand, but there really isn't any reason to do so.  It makes things unfairly confusing.  So, if these are indeed Flashbacks, you need to come out and tell us.

What Lark is, is a mystery to me.  I'm not going to go back and look at all the various options we had to work with, but let's assume she's some sort of evil creature that likes to eat the entrails of the living.  She may be small, but she's obviously very formidable...so...I have an issue with the whole setup.  For some reason, she let this Welder dude grab her, tie her up, stab her, etc., before killing him and eating his innards.  Why?  Why then also attack Walden?  And why couldn't she overcome Walden?

The whole Welder thing is both good and bad, IMO.  It's a cliche character that we've seen in various forms in thousands of movies.  Nothing inherently wrong with that, but for a short that runs along typical torture porn themes, IMO, we need reasoning, as well as strong characters and I don't see either here.

So, in the end, Walden subdues Lark, but she escapes, and he decides to don the Welder suit and mask and do what?  Start a killing spree of his own?  I don't know...it doesn't fly with me, but maybe I am actually missing something here.

Looking forward to the reveal and some clarification.

Whatever the deal turns out to be, this is a solid, thought provoking OWC entry and one of the better ones for sure.  Strong writing, lots going on, and you seem to have hit a nerve of interest in the masses here.  Congrats on that!
Posted by: leitskev, March 2nd, 2011, 12:02am; Reply: 24
Dream, I think I missed the boat on this last night but figured it out today enough to answer your questions, some of them anyway. Walden, at the end, does not set on a killing spree. He sets out to kill Lark, and just Lark, who had killed his wife. Presumably something similar had happened to original Welder. So while we think he is the villain, in a way he is not.

The flashbacks really are just to set up a motive for why Walden goes after Lark at the end. Without them, he would just call the cops or something.

What the creature is, I have no idea. It may be that this story was in the head of the writer a while and he adapted it to the contest. No idea. If it is one of the creatures from the list, the writer can maybe expand on that a little in the rewrite.

A lingering problem is how this creature is both powerful and helpless at the same time. I can't answer that one, and it troubled me. Best I can come up with is that it is some kind of clawed creature, not that strong, but capable of gutting someone. The shapeshifting aspect is even harder to match to the story.

These are just my interpretations. Could be wrong.

The idea of the girl in the woods, the guy with the heavy apron and the mask is certainly cliche. But at least a new twist was added, or the attempt was made.

I have read all of the stories in the challenge, and in my amateur opinion they all have flaws. I guess it's a matter of which stories can have the flaws fixed without too much trouble.
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 2nd, 2011, 12:11am; Reply: 25
After reading what E.D. said I was kind of hoping that this was an actual loop because that would be really cool - even IF it's been done before.  So I went back and checked the script.  It isn't.

Red car in front, blue car in back which would actually be the correct colours for the corresponding light shift if this script was travelling faster than the speed of light.    
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 2nd, 2011, 12:19am; Reply: 26
You may be right, and I understand that...but...let's be real for a sec here...

Old Walden wasn't written as a very formidable guy, IMO, He took a hammer to the head, a big knife stab and twist to the thigh, and then I think he was bitten and attacked by Lark.  All potential life ending things.  If he's in survival mode, I can suspend disbelief with the best of them, but to don the Welder's suit and go after Lark just doesn't work, IMO.  It's one of those tacked on endings that we see all too much in horror and for me, takes away from the res of the script.
Posted by: pwhitcroft, March 2nd, 2011, 12:20am; Reply: 27
This is a solid horror story that’s well written. For me I’d like to get some wider sense of meaning from it, however I realized I might be asking for something the genre doesn’t require.

These are notes I made as I read:

Pg 1 – It’s a good energetic start.

Pg 5 – The story has moved along well. For some reason I’m not quite engaged with it, I suspect it’s because the stakes seem to be limited to these characters’ lives which means we really have to care for them.

Pg 9 – The action and horror works well. I’m still wondering what the purpose or wider stakes will turn out to be.

Pg 12 – I like the altered positions of the ending, although I’m a bit confused on what it means. Perhaps I’m supposed to be.


Philip
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 2nd, 2011, 12:23am; Reply: 28

Quoted from Dreamscale
I can suspend disbelief with the best of them, but to don the Welder's suit and go after Lark just doesn't work, IMO.  It's one of those tacked on endings that we see all too much in horror and for me, takes away from the res of the script.


It's foreshadowed through the whole script.  It doesn't suddenly happen.
Posted by: RayW, March 2nd, 2011, 12:24am; Reply: 29
It's the Thai Pop
http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?b-feb2011/m-1298084400/s-90/

Pop - The phi Pop are fearsome ghosts from Thai folklore. They can possess a human being and feed on the intestines. They can be expelled by a spirit doctor who performs a "whirlpool dance." The ghost, watching the dance, is sucked into the whirlpool and is thus removed from the body.
The legend of this ghost originated with a prince who found a magical way to enter the body of another living person or animal. When he performed this feat and entered the body of an animal, his servant, who had been listening to the magic words, repeated the incantation and entered the body of the prince. The prince, unable to return to his own body, transferred to that of a bird and flew to his wife to tell her what had happened. She immediately had the servant's body destroyed and challenged the false prince to enter the body of an animal. When he did, the real prince quickly re-entered his own body. The servant, unable to return to his body, is since then forced to going from one body to the next, eating the intestines.

The phi Pop is also said to be a female ogre who feeds on human intestines and/or the blood of animals at night.


Someone asked if these folklores and mythologies had to be followed with any historical accuracy.
General consensus was "Nah. We're entertainers, not historians."
Viola!

And the story could be circular if the husband of the wife Lark ate the guts out of last week happens to be driving down the same country road as Walden chases her across it.
Rinse and repeat.
Rinse and repeat.
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 2nd, 2011, 12:25am; Reply: 30
How is it foreshadowed?
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 2nd, 2011, 12:27am; Reply: 31

Quoted from Dreamscale
How is it foreshadowed?


In the flashbacks.  And with the deer.  
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 2nd, 2011, 12:28am; Reply: 32
That pertains to Lark, not the Welder.  
Posted by: leitskev, March 2nd, 2011, 12:37am; Reply: 33
Without the flashbacks, Walden doesn't have the rage motive to attack the Lark/creature. Afterall, all he saw was her kill the Welder.
Posted by: jwent6688, March 2nd, 2011, 12:58am; Reply: 34
I worked as a welder for a year. You're completely blind in the sheild save for the intense arc of a weld. I think you should pick a better mask for the pursuit. Also why Walden couldn't have stared into his eyes before he took off the mask.

I've always had a problem with people waking up, tied to a chair in a dungeon or bloody atmosphre, and the first words out of their mouthes are "Help!"

This had some good moments, but just seemed like history repeating itself type script. I'll assume this goes on and on. Lark being the monster here was a decent twist though. The writing was pretty good too.

Good job completing a script in a week.

James
Posted by: GirlO, March 2nd, 2011, 1:27am; Reply: 35
It’s cool to see all the discussion about a short. It’s got to be either something good or totally flop when you get people talking/asking some questions – right?

Flashbacks were good motivation for Walden to, not only wear the welder’s mask and pursue Lark, but to actually follow a mysterious van/bloddy-kidnapped chick  down ‘some road’ at night, instead of just phoning it in. I was thinking ‘why would he do that.' Trying to play superman here? Hmm...So I like that we don’t find out his motivations, in the flashback, till a little later on. You got one up on me :-)

I admit these loop to loop scripts do piss me off. No matter how much I ‘get it’ and have it explained, something about the whole ‘egg /chicken’ thing just doesn’t sit right with me, always this nagging voice in the back of my mind, sorta like my ex...Anyway, I appreciate the concept. Kinda

Some good visuals. Well thought out. Few kinks others have pointed out.
One of my main issues – I, like a couple others, do wonder about your creature’s sporadic fits of strength – just saying, is all?

Good work!

This is the most interesting/fave one I’ve read so far. Admittedly I have only read five…

Naomi
Posted by: Ryan1, March 2nd, 2011, 1:30am; Reply: 36

Quoted from leitskev
Without the flashbacks, Walden doesn't have the rage motive to attack the Lark/creature. Afterall, all he saw was her kill the Welder.


No, he has plenty of rage motive, seeing as how Lark attacks him and acid gets splashed on his face.  I just didn't understand how the flashbacks, particularly that last one where he finds his wife's corpse, figure into the present timeline.  There was never any recognition from Walden that "This is the creature that killed Jessica."
Posted by: leitskev, March 2nd, 2011, 1:56am; Reply: 37
Maybe he has enough motive, maybe. The last flash is to show his wife was killed by the creature.

Like I said, there are a lot of things you have to accept to buy into the story, and in the end, it might be too much. His wife is killed by a creature he ends up saving then grappling with; he doesn't even know the name of the road he's on; for some reason acid is required to destroy this creature, and just happens to keep splashing on people's faces; Welder really has weak motive for what he does to Walden.

I just saw an explanation posted of what the creature is. Not sure if it helped me. Was Lark ever just a girl...one who ended up possessed by the creature? If so, then why does she take on hideous form near the end? For that matter, even if a shapeshifter, why take on the new form? Does it revert to form when eating?

Def a lot of questions. And yes GirlO, been fun trying to figure it out!
Posted by: greg, March 2nd, 2011, 3:09am; Reply: 38
Ambitious, yes, but the ending didn't do much for me.  I felt that there was one too many "big moments" going on in addition to the flashbacks which, even after going back and rereading, I still don't get how they fix into everything.  Nor do I really "get" Lark being this creature thing.  

It started off pretty good - a story we've seen before with some mysterious creep torturing his hostages, but it was written very effectively and eerily.  But as I said, I just couldn't tie things together at the end.  Not really sure what you were going for but am interested to know.

Regardless this is well written and had good imagery.  Nice job anyway.

Greg
Posted by: bert, March 2nd, 2011, 10:24am; Reply: 39
I get it, and props to the author for generating so much discussion.

There are a few logic gaps in "the loop" -- primarily where The Welder is unjustifiably attacking Walden -- but I think a good rewrite -- with more time than one week -- and a sharp focus on the internal logic of this piece could really whip it into shape.

Look forward to finding out who this is -- and I sure hope it is somebody around and contributing.  I will be so disappointed if this one belongs to a leech.
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 2nd, 2011, 11:10am; Reply: 40
There's no loop that I'm aware of.
Posted by: bert, March 2nd, 2011, 11:19am; Reply: 41

Quoted from Dreamscale
There's no loop that I'm aware of.


Walden becomes the "new" Welder, pursing Lark.

Whoever arrives in the next car becomes the new "Walden".

And the cycle repeats.
Posted by: Dreamscale, March 2nd, 2011, 11:32am; Reply: 42
Personally, I disagree that's the intent...and if it is, it makes even less sense then.

Are these killings and abductions taking place on a daily basis?

Do these people feel no humanly pain?

Is there a police force somewhere, within 500 miles?
Posted by: leitskev, March 2nd, 2011, 1:10pm; Reply: 43
I don't think it's a loop, in the sense that it will necessarily keep going. It's more just a twist on how someone can end up like the Welder. We usually assume the Welder is a psychopath, but this gives a different understanding. I have been kind of oscillating on my opinion on this story. But if the author intends this to be some kind of infinite loop, I will swing back towards frustration with it.
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 2nd, 2011, 5:45pm; Reply: 44
That's why I think it would be much more cool if the ending were rewritten so that it was more like a mobius strip.  Where the ending is exactly like the beginning except from the POV of the Welder in the van.  Both the Welder and the person in the car are Walden.  Of course you might have to subtly foreshadow some of this during the script itself because it would bring up some interesting and different questions.  
Posted by: James McClung, March 2nd, 2011, 5:57pm; Reply: 45
One of the better ones I've read so far. I liked the setup. Sometimes it's more interesting to follow someone then just wake up in a situation. It makes room for a lot more dread. I liked the writing, the imagery, the character (that is to say The Welder) and the fact that our victims had a little more bite than usual.

The twist with Lark, I somehow expected. Walden becoming The Welder, not so much. I wouldn't been a little more impressed with it, as well as the twist of the cycle repeating itself, had I not seen Dario Argento's Jennifer for Masters of Horror. Same basic premise. A guy tries to rescue a girl from a would-be killer only to find out she's the bad one and become the would-be killer himself. Not always fun to come across the same basic idea twice. Still, the application of the theme is quite nice.

The flashbacks were kinda meh. I'm getting sick of the faceless wife plot device. I really don't care how much it tugs at the everyman's heartstrings. It's as flat and cliche as can be. But whatever.

Good one. Favorite, so far. Not sure why so many people are having a hard time with it.
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., March 2nd, 2011, 8:55pm; Reply: 46

Quoted from Dreamscale
OK...read this and then read all the feedback and felt like I must have missed something.  Skimmed over it again, and came to the conclusion that it wasn't me who was missing anything, but everyone else.  We'll see when things are revealed.

First things first...this is well written for the most part.  Not great by any means, but very solid, especially compared to the vast majority of OWC entries, and actually, even compared to most SS shorts in general, so Kudos!

I think I know who wrote this, and if I'm right, this is leaps and bounds above what "he" has churned out up till now, so again, Kudos, if I'm correct.  I'm basing my assumptions on a few things...the action sequences (which are pretty good, but not quite there, IMO) and the way that the "generic" cars were given colors.  Again, we'll have to wait and see.

So, for me, this isn't anything to do with merging time lines or the like.  Other than the incorrectly not labeled Flashbacks, this all plays out just like it appears to.  Not sure why everyone feels differently.

I see this as a pretty generic/standard torture porn slasher type short, melded with some sort of creature Celtic myth in Lark.  It all works OK and again, is written pretty damn well, so I applaud you, but I do have issues that don't jive at all for me..but again, maybe I'm missing something.

Let's go back to those Flashbacks that aren't labeled.  It's something that irritates me.  If a scene is a Flashback or dream, it needs to be labeled as such.  No way around it.  If you're trying to fuck with your reader, I understand, but there really isn't any reason to do so.  It makes things unfairly confusing.  So, if these are indeed Flashbacks, you need to come out and tell us.

What Lark is, is a mystery to me.  I'm not going to go back and look at all the various options we had to work with, but let's assume she's some sort of evil creature that likes to eat the entrails of the living.  She may be small, but she's obviously very formidable...so...I have an issue with the whole setup.  For some reason, she let this Welder dude grab her, tie her up, stab her, etc., before killing him and eating his innards.  Why?  Why then also attack Walden?  And why couldn't she overcome Walden?

The whole Welder thing is both good and bad, IMO.  It's a cliche character that we've seen in various forms in thousands of movies.  Nothing inherently wrong with that, but for a short that runs along typical torture porn themes, IMO, we need reasoning, as well as strong characters and I don't see either here.

So, in the end, Walden subdues Lark, but she escapes, and he decides to don the Welder suit and mask and do what?  Start a killing spree of his own?  I don't know...it doesn't fly with me, but maybe I am actually missing something here.

Looking forward to the reveal and some clarification.

Whatever the deal turns out to be, this is a solid, thought provoking OWC entry and one of the better ones for sure.  Strong writing, lots going on, and you seem to have hit a nerve of interest in the masses here.  Congrats on that!


I am just going to quote the whole thing Jeff said because that's how I feel too as I stated before.

This is no doubt a very well done script, but:

If Lark has these special powers, why does she allow her thumb to be broken and to suffer through that to get free?

It's a deliberate "fool" on the part of the writer which isn't good. So, the thing is, we need to figure out how to make this work. Maybe she needs to "pretend her thumb is cracked" Show it being bent... Use a phony rubber finger (the crack sound comes from her unique powers) for the shot, and then show her smirking off to the side, when she "oomps" a bit of pain out of her mouth.

Does this make sense to anyone or am I off course?

I did not get the "Walden is the Welder" thing that I'm not sure the author intended, but someone made that leap. Am I also off course with that? I did do a skim again, but I didn't see it.

Also, there's no logic to why the girl allows herself to be taken captive. Maybe here we've got room for development.

Seriously, might we consider:

The girl knew The Welder and loved him. He died. They're ghosts and they seduce others into their world in order to, together, kill them, take their energy.. and carry on in their screwed up loop of time, as ghosts often do, because they can't move on.

There! There's my contribution to making this better.  ;)

Sandra
Posted by: stevie, March 2nd, 2011, 9:15pm; Reply: 47
On a second read, I picked the 'loop'. But it doesn't come over well in the writing, if that's what the author intended.

Also, I might add that, though Lark is meant to be a sprite/faerie type critter, there's no explanation or 'local legend' kind of hint.

Liked the writing, overall, except the non-use of flashbacks, but it only vaguely fits the challenge, with Lark.
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., March 2nd, 2011, 9:20pm; Reply: 48

Quoted from stevie


Liked the writing, overall, except the non-use of flashbacks, but it only vaguely fits the challenge, with Lark.


Maybe she was written on a lark.  ;D

Sandra
Posted by: RayW, March 2nd, 2011, 9:26pm; Reply: 49
The author has my sincerest sympathies watching all of this.   :B

http://www.fmlifecoalition.org/humptydumpty.jpg
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 2nd, 2011, 9:29pm; Reply: 50

Quoted from RayW
The author has my sincerest sympathies watching all of this.   :B

http://www.fmlifecoalition.org/humptydumpty.jpg


Are you kidding?  The author has gotten a bonanza of comments and ideas.   They can use those to make this a really sold script.   Plus most people, even though they might not have gotten it, liked it.   Not a cracked egg at all - more like one about to hatch.
Posted by: leitskev, March 2nd, 2011, 10:00pm; Reply: 51
Yeah, I am sure the author is loving the attention.  I don't know how it usually works, but it's good to have a few scripts people can debate and try to understand, improve.
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., March 3rd, 2011, 12:47am; Reply: 52

Quoted from leitskev
Yeah, I am sure the author is loving the attention.  I don't know how it usually works, but it's good to have a few scripts people can debate and try to understand, improve.


To be able to question and study it-- that's the fun. I love being able to think about how this can go to the next level. This is an OWC and it's a really excellent one. It has its kinks, but writers often like things kinky.

Sandra
Posted by: keaton01, March 3rd, 2011, 11:03pm; Reply: 53
Not a lot to say that hasn't been said.

- Why don’t you try that on someone closer to your own size? - Humor at times can be good, but this wouldn't be one of those moments.

Interesting horror tale. Could look nice with a budget. I would worry about the larger appeal, but I think the twist at the end would leave most people captivated.
Posted by: leitskev, March 5th, 2011, 11:32am; Reply: 54
Since there are some still reading, figured I would give this a boost with a post. No idea who the author is, I promise.

In many ways this is the best of the bunch. It starts out in a classic horror setting and hits the suspense rail almost right off the bat. The match thing humanizes Walden in a visual and simple way. We sense his anxiety without seeing him quiver or anything that blatant. Brilliant.

In following the van and getting out of it, there is a sense of the heroic which attaches us to the character. You find yourself saying, "don't get out of your car, call the cops!".

You suspect almost from the outset that the girl is the creature, but that's ok. You know there is at least one twist coming, you think that's it, but when a story is well crafted, you don't mind, and you want to hang around and find out.

If you don't try to reason it out, you like the ending. You're intrigued that the hero now finds himself the Welder.

There were some downsides to the story. The first is that there is nothing Celtic about it I can see. The OWC did have a couple non-Celtic creatures on the list. This probably should have been better explained, but my personal assumption on that was that if one used such a creature they should somehow "Celtify" it.

The other potential problem here is there is so much of the story that is cliche. Not necessarily bad, as that is common in horror, and I suspect that the abundance of these cliches in this story is evidence that the effect was intentional by the author. The girl being chased in the woods, the masked, aproned villain, the guy and girl tied up, the villain stirring a potion in the cellar with "Satanic" books on the shelf...all this was perhaps intentionally designed to tweak with an ending that is not cliche. So one could either be really annoyed by it, or play along and be amused by the ending.

The next problem is the main one raised above: the problem of the creature itself. Not gonna go into what has been covered above. I'm gonna see if we can discuss fixing the situation, if I can be so bold.

Let's look at basic facts, and see if we can make them work:
1) Lark is fast enough and strong enough to kill a dear, probably without a weapon
2) Lark is captured by Welden, who is large but slow, limited in sight by his mask, and does have an ax
3) Lark has trouble escaping being bound to a chair
4) Lark overpowers Welder and eats him in the cellar
5) Lark attacks Walden, but cannot overpower and flees
6) Walden is fast enough to chase Lark on foot
7) Larkcan to some degree adopt different human forms; we see her beautiful and hideous.

note: it is mentioned in a post that Lark can possess others, meaning Lark is one who had been possessed by the creature. There is no evidence for this in the script, and the obvious question would be why she did not attempt to possess Welder or Walden.

My first attempt at making Lark work was this: she is fast and clawed, but her strength is less than that of a large man. So she can catch a deer, gut it, and gut a man, but cannot overpower a man, especially if he is armed with an axe. She was able to kill Welder not because she was stronger, but because it was dark, his vision was constricted, and she is fast and clawed. She swooped in and sunk her claws before he could react. Then lunch.

But if she's that fast, how can Welder catch her in the woods? In a welder's mask?

Ok, maybe Lark is not that fast. Then how did she kill the dear? Maybe she has some other skill. She puts the dear in a trance, holds it still. She lies for hours on a deer path patiently waiting. Plausible.

Then how does she kill Welder? Dam it!

Maybe she's the ultimate sprinter. Super fast over extremely short distances, but then she runs out of gas. That's how slow humans catch her. But she has the short burst to kill an unguarded human or a an unwary deer.

What about magic? Does she have any magical powers, besides changing appearance? Could that be used to make this work? Maybe she has the candle from the Flesh script, she can freeze time, but only for a moment?

Well, I tried. That's what coffee does to me! Maybe someone else can chip in. I wanted to bump this one back up so people will read it and wrestle with it. It's a great script.

My sense is there was a great starting concept: Walden will become Welder. The theme would be, "there, but for the grace of God go I!" The challenge was to pull it off, to get from A to B in a believable way.

The question is did the writer pull it off? Can we buy it? If not, can it be saved with tweaking? The writer may have ideas. He's probably pissed at the audacity of my questions, but he doesn't know where I live! Nothing he can do!

The more important question is what would a film festival audience think. Never been to one, can't help with that. It probably will be that how we get from A to B won't much matter. The fact that Walden becomes Welder will be enough to impress a large chunk of the crowd. However, if the journey between A and B can be made a little more sensible, so much better the chance for this will be! If one idea from a reader helps the writer, he has given great service. So hate me if you want, but hopefully something helped. And great job on the script, a master at work.
Posted by: leitskev, March 5th, 2011, 11:47am; Reply: 55
How could I forget to discuss the flashbacks?

As I mentioned in a previous post on this, I think the flashbacks were something the writer felt was necessary to give Walden sufficient motivation to assume the mask of Welder and continue the hunt. The fact that the creature attacked Walden is not enough. It was a defensive move, and it is a creature after all. Would you put on the mask and hunt it if it was just a wolf? No, you would go to the hospital and treat your wounds, and tell the police.

But the fact this killed his wife gives him the animus needed to put all that aside and go after it.

Will it be hard for an audience to buy into the coincidence that it killed his wife?
Hmm. I don't know. If he lives in the area, it could be plausible.

Finally, a word on the "loop". Ah, no. If this is a loop, so there will be an infinite procession of Welders, I'm out. That just doesn't make any sense. I am ok with Walden becoming Welder. It's kind of his destiny; look at his name, a twist on Welder. That's cool. No infinite loop. Ok, cool beans, look forward to hearing from others.
Posted by: Baltis. (Guest), March 5th, 2011, 5:21pm; Reply: 56
Too familiar for my taste.  Right fade in sucks monkey fuck.  The welder has been used in many films... I even wrote a script where a killer wears a welders mask and carries a flame thrower, yes it was inspired by my love for ' the exterminator 2'.  

My script was called 'all the way home'.

You also touched upon the Jenifer bit from masters of horror.  You write well enough, a few old school formatting quarks aside on my end.  But congrats on the win... It's easily filmable.
Posted by: leitskev, March 5th, 2011, 5:48pm; Reply: 57
Have I been here long enough to say this? Well, live with it...you people that make a big deal about whether the "fade in" should be right or left...seriously? Is it really that important. For the love of...I'm pretty sure "fade in" will not appear in the film.

Whoever the author here is, very nice work and congrats! I strongly suspected this was the winner the moment I read. This writer knows what works. Great job!
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., March 5th, 2011, 5:50pm; Reply: 58

Quoted from leitskev
Since there are some still reading, figured I would give this a boost with a post. No idea who the author is, I promise.

In many ways this is the best of the bunch. It starts out in a classic horror setting and hits the suspense rail almost right off the bat. The match thing humanizes Walden in a visual and simple way. We sense his anxiety without seeing him quiver or anything that blatant. Brilliant.

In following the van and getting out of it, there is a sense of the heroic which attaches us to the character. You find yourself saying, "don't get out of your car, call the cops!".

You suspect almost from the outset that the girl is the creature, but that's ok. You know there is at least one twist coming, you think that's it, but when a story is well crafted, you don't mind, and you want to hang around and find out.

If you don't try to reason it out, you like the ending. You're intrigued that the hero now finds himself the Welder.

There were some downsides to the story. The first is that there is nothing Celtic about it I can see. The OWC did have a couple non-Celtic creatures on the list. This probably should have been better explained, but my personal assumption on that was that if one used such a creature they should somehow "Celtify" it.

The other potential problem here is there is so much of the story that is cliche. Not necessarily bad, as that is common in horror, and I suspect that the abundance of these cliches in this story is evidence that the effect was intentional by the author. The girl being chased in the woods, the masked, aproned villain, the guy and girl tied up, the villain stirring a potion in the cellar with "Satanic" books on the shelf...all this was perhaps intentionally designed to tweak with an ending that is not cliche. So one could either be really annoyed by it, or play along and be amused by the ending.

The next problem is the main one raised above: the problem of the creature itself. Not gonna go into what has been covered above. I'm gonna see if we can discuss fixing the situation, if I can be so bold.

Let's look at basic facts, and see if we can make them work:
1) Lark is fast enough and strong enough to kill a dear, probably without a weapon
2) Lark is captured by Welden, who is large but slow, limited in sight by his mask, and does have an ax
3) Lark has trouble escaping being bound to a chair
4) Lark overpowers Welder and eats him in the cellar
5) Lark attacks Walden, but cannot overpower and flees
6) Walden is fast enough to chase Lark on foot
7) Larkcan to some degree adopt different human forms; we see her beautiful and hideous.

note: it is mentioned in a post that Lark can possess others, meaning Lark is one who had been possessed by the creature. There is no evidence for this in the script, and the obvious question would be why she did not attempt to possess Welder or Walden.

My first attempt at making Lark work was this: she is fast and clawed, but her strength is less than that of a large man. So she can catch a deer, gut it, and gut a man, but cannot overpower a man, especially if he is armed with an axe. She was able to kill Welder not because she was stronger, but because it was dark, his vision was constricted, and she is fast and clawed. She swooped in and sunk her claws before he could react. Then lunch.

But if she's that fast, how can Welder catch her in the woods? In a welder's mask?

Ok, maybe Lark is not that fast. Then how did she kill the dear? Maybe she has some other skill. She puts the dear in a trance, holds it still. She lies for hours on a deer path patiently waiting. Plausible.

Then how does she kill Welder? Dam it!

Maybe she's the ultimate sprinter. Super fast over extremely short distances, but then she runs out of gas. That's how slow humans catch her. But she has the short burst to kill an unguarded human or a an unwary deer.

What about magic? Does she have any magical powers, besides changing appearance? Could that be used to make this work? Maybe she has the candle from the Flesh script, she can freeze time, but only for a moment?

Well, I tried. That's what coffee does to me! Maybe someone else can chip in. I wanted to bump this one back up so people will read it and wrestle with it. It's a great script.

My sense is there was a great starting concept: Walden will become Welder. The theme would be, "there, but for the grace of God go I!" The challenge was to pull it off, to get from A to B in a believable way.

The question is did the writer pull it off? Can we buy it? If not, can it be saved with tweaking? The writer may have ideas. He's probably pissed at the audacity of my questions, but he doesn't know where I live! Nothing he can do!

The more important question is what would a film festival audience think. Never been to one, can't help with that. It probably will be that how we get from A to B won't much matter. The fact that Walden becomes Welder will be enough to impress a large chunk of the crowd. However, if the journey between A and B can be made a little more sensible, so much better the chance for this will be! If one idea from a reader helps the writer, he has given great service. So hate me if you want, but hopefully something helped. And great job on the script, a master at work.


Leitskev,

Thank you so much. You said so very extremely well, what I tried to say about her "thumb breaking episode" in the chair. I felt that it has lost validity there.

My suggestion to fix the whole Lark problem is to make her powers unstable. I think it's valid and justifiable especially when we consider people in general and their everyday performance. Some days they're miracle workers, other days, they need a miracle.

Hope this helps.

Sandra
Posted by: Baltis. (Guest), March 5th, 2011, 5:56pm; Reply: 59

Quoted from leitskev
Have I been here long enough to say this? Well, live with it...you people that make a big deal about whether the "fade in" should be right or left...seriously? Is it really that important. For the love of...I'm pretty sure "fade in" will not appear in the film.

Whoever the author here is, very nice work and congrats! I strongly suspected this was the winner the moment I read. This writer knows what works. Great job!


It's very important for Flow and Pace.  What people, mainly amateur's, overlook is the structure of a script and how important it is that you nail certain criteria and aspects down to a science.  

Can you right FADE IN: right justified to the 1.5?  Sure you can... But we can also read books backwards.   Having FADE IN: on the left of the page means we jump into our movie and read it from left to right.  It's a flow and pace thing.  It's a blueprint thing.  It's a traditional thing.

I don't know about you or anyone else but I like reading left to right... It might be old school, but it works.  I like ending a book by turning pages to the left too.  It's just how I am.

Can you get away with putting it on the right side of the page?  I'm sure many have to a level of success -- But why change the record if people are still dancing to the current one?   Some people, myself, don't like change.  Others do.  It's a taste thing.  It's a style thing.  You do what works best for you and your style -- Some, myself included, will pan it -- Others will applaud it.
Posted by: Sandra Elstree., March 5th, 2011, 6:05pm; Reply: 60

Quoted from Baltis.


It's very important for Flow and Pace.  What people, mainly amateur's, overlook is the structure of a script and how important it is that you nail certain criteria and aspects down to a science.  

Can you right FADE IN: right justified to the 1.5?  Sure you can... But we can also read books backwards.   Having FADE IN: on the left of the page means we jump into our movie and read it from left to right.  It's a flow and pace thing.  It's a blueprint thing.  It's a traditional thing.

I don't know about you or anyone else but I like reading left to right... It might be old school, but it works.  I like ending a book by turning pages to the left too.  It's just how I am.

Can you get away with putting it on the right side of the page?  I'm sure many have to a level of success -- But why change the record if people are still dancing to the current one?   Some people, myself, don't like change.  Others do.  It's a taste thing.  It's a style thing.  You do what works best for you and your style -- Some, myself included, will pan it -- Others will applaud it.


Seriously,  ;D sometimes I screw up because I study Hebrew as a hobby. And I'll be writing right to left as is normal for Hebrew, but then every so often, I go in reverse.

I do prefer FADE IN at the left, but that's just me. Left, Gevurah, strength and judgment. Right, Chesed, kindness and mercy. I have a solution!!!

Let's put FADE IN in the middle!!!

Sandra
Posted by: mcornetto (Guest), March 5th, 2011, 6:11pm; Reply: 61

Quoted from Sandra Elstree.

Let's put FADE IN in the middle!!!


I think this thread really isn't the place for a screenwriting format discussion.  So let's get rid of FADE IN altogether.
Posted by: wannabe (Guest), March 5th, 2011, 6:24pm; Reply: 62
Congrats!  Much deserved.

Captive was one of my top three picks.  Out of the three I chose, this one really had that filmable quality.  I can't wait to see the finished product.  :)
Posted by: khamanna, March 5th, 2011, 7:15pm; Reply: 63
Congrats on a fine script!
Posted by: SteveUK, March 5th, 2011, 8:20pm; Reply: 64
Congratulations!  Definitely a deserved winner.
Posted by: shootingduck, March 7th, 2011, 4:51pm; Reply: 65
Thank you all for reading and commenting.  I'm still in the process of reading everyone else's work from the OWC, so over the next couple days I'll be bouncing back and forth between doing that and responding to the critiques/questions on this board.  I'll try and make sure I address at least all of the bigger questions...

Obviously MAJOR SPOILERS will follow...

What was The Myth...?

In the rules/guidelines we were instructed that we could combine, modify and modernize these myths.  My myth is something of a mash up, featuring elements of a few of those on the list to create a new myth.  The main one that I wanted to use was the Phi Pop, as RayW noticed and pointed out in the thread.  I didn't much care for the "whirlpool dance" method of vanquishing the Pop, however, as it didn't seem like something that would come across well on film... At least not without a bunch of overt, direct exposition, which I was clearly trying to avoid by not overly explaining much at all in the script.  I wanted to leave a lot to the imagination.  So I took some liberties...

I also included elements of The Bogeyman (The Welder - abducting a small girl... in my research I read that he is referred to as Sack Man in some cultures, which is the origin of the sack he carried her in), The Siren (young female luring a seaman - or in this case a motorist - to his doom), Goblin (Lark's evil trickster nature and her grotesque appearance) and general purpose witchcraft/the occult (The Welder's caustic brew, mixed with Lark's blood).


What's the deal with Lark...?

She is not an overpowering, dominant force...  She does not have any super strength or special abilities as some thought she might...  She is a small creature, but she is quick and sneaky.  That's how she can take down a deer, that's why she had to knock out the lights to take down The Welder, that's why she stuck to the shadows when circling Walden.  She is an intelligent creature and a hunter, she uses the cover of darkness and the element of surprise to get the drop on her victims.

Some folks were unclear on why Lark would "allow" Walden to break her thumb.  She didn't allow it, she needed it to be done to facilitate her escape.  She can't cut through her ropes, but her hands are small enough that without the added tension from the rigidness of her thumb, she can slide out of them.  Once she got out, one could speculate that her likely next move would be to leave Walden behind and run away again OR she might even cut him free in hopes to pit him against The Welder to distract them both during her escape.  But before she could collect herself, The Welder returned.


Why is Lark "beautiful and normal" in one scene and then grotesque at the end...?

There is no transformation, Lark is always grotesque.  This is something that I thought I had gotten across in the writing, but perhaps could have been spelled out more clearly.  At three separate points in the script, I mention Lark's face being mostly covered, either by her hair or by The Welder's glove when he carries her downstairs.  The intention, which will obviously come across clearer on screen, is that her face is never seen until the scene in which it is described.  I wanted the audience to go on the journey that Walden went on.  So, I tried to never give any information to the audience that Walden himself did not have.  Therefore, since he has never seen her face, we never see her face.  At least not her full disfigured form.  We may catch glimpses of her, but we never get the whole picture until Walden does in the basement.


Why does Lark attack Walden in the basement but not kill him...?

Walden comes down, catches her eating The Welder's intestines, sees her for what she really is and she feels trapped, cornered by her former ally.  She attacks, the way a feral animal would in the same situation.  She has no interest in feeding on him, she's already eaten.  She doesn't necessarily need to kill him, she just needs to fight him off long enough that she can get away, so she attacks.  Even if she wanted to kill him, once the caustic potion gets on his hands and face, she cannot continue with her attack for fear that it will get on her... and it's already been set up that she knows what the potion is and that it is fatal to her.  She can't take the risk, so she flees.

I am going to go read some of the other entries now... will return with more answers to questions in the thread later.
Posted by: leitskev, March 7th, 2011, 5:43pm; Reply: 66
Very well answered Duck. I had wondered about the possibility of her face just not being seen. It does say at the beginning, if I recall, she is 20, which is probably what threw me down that direction. So it is not that she turns into a hag, it is just that to humans her appearance is grotesque. I got it.

Curious about how you would want that filmed. If the audience never sees her face, what will they assume? That might reduce some of your intended twist effect, though the main twist is Walden becoming Welder. If we don't see her face, certainly we will assume the worst about her.

I think you answered most of the questions, except maybe the flashback. As I mentioned before, my assumption was that it was needed to animate Walden at the end to take the role of Welder.

Very nice work, Duck!
Posted by: dogglebe (Guest), March 13th, 2011, 12:17pm; Reply: 67
I thought the storytelling was better than the story, itself.  The story was your basic slasher chase scene and follow up with an interesting twist at the end.  I did catch the clue you left in the story.  After that, I was waiting to see Lark reveal her hand to the point that it was distracting.

You can cut back on a lot of the headers you used; this read more than a shooting script as a result of them.  Taking them out could possible reduce the page count to eleven.


SPOILER SPACE

One thing that puzzles me is that where all the scenes took place.  Walden lost his wife/girlfriend to Lark in the flashback.  And he and Lark run into each other in the story.  How much territory does Lark cover?  I would imagine quite a bit as Walden had no idea where he was, driving.


Phil
Posted by: Andrew, March 13th, 2011, 12:55pm; Reply: 68
I gather this will be filmed by Rick, so congratulations to the writer and best of luck with the production, Rick.

Obviously I am reading the rewrite, so I am not sure how much this differs from the initial script.

This script immediately stands out by virtue of its filmable moments and potentially memorable shots:

- The Welder's mask as it passes the rear of the car.
- The hand on the back of the van as it passes.

Also, you created an instant charisma with Jessica, and with minimal words, involve me in the relationship with Walden - excellent writing. There is resonance in the flashbacks as it reveals Jessica also falls to Lark, which in view of Walden's desire to help leaves an ironic twist as he was unable to help the one he loved, or himself by the end.

This script is also evidence of keeping your characters quiet, unless they have something to say.

Overall, this is a good little script reminiscent of a 'Twilight Zone' or 'Outer Limits' cautionary tale.
Posted by: Don, October 13th, 2017, 6:27pm; Reply: 69
See this thread for info on the filming and showing

http://www.simplyscripts.net/cgi-bin/Blah/Blah.pl?m-1507886929

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