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SimplyScripts Screenwriting Discussion Board  /  Comedy Scripts  /  The Inventist
Posted by: Don, March 25th, 2016, 12:22pm
The Inventist by Frank J. Dellipoala - Comedy - A frustrated middle age inventor clashes with everyone he meets while trying to find his niche. 102 pages - pdf, format 8)
Posted by: HyperMatt, December 1st, 2017, 7:48pm; Reply: 1
I love Eugene. This would be a great role for a veteran actor good at comedy roles, like Micheal Keaton, Bill Murray, etc.
Posted by: HyperMatt, December 1st, 2017, 10:20pm; Reply: 2

I quite enjoyed reading this script, read it in a day.
The main characters were really engaging. It had a warm family-friendly feel good feel about it. It feels like a Dramedy that veers towards the comedy side. I was feeling that animals and insects play too prominent a part but then I realised this story was more of a Noah/ Dr. Doolittle, which would bring in the family crowd. It has a final act that I did not see coming.
The strongest thing in the script I think is the dialogue, even Eugene’s made long rants have a sense of poetry and wisdom about them, and is often very funny. Some scenes are quite amusing, I’m thinking of the prosthetic limb scene and the drone attack on the police. The comical tone is consistent throughout the script.
Eugene is a really good protagonist, It is impossible not to love him. He’s a child-like adventurer who sees the positive no matter what happens, and some of his inventions are quite imaginative and serve the plot. And there’s a One Flew Other the Cuckoo’s nest thing going on, Eugene against the system. I loved the scenes where the police and authorities were hunting him down. They were not repetitive. He kept reminding me of those quirky comic characters from the 60s/70s that Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau use to play, plus
I thought the characterization, including minor characters was spot on for the most part. Some of Gloria’s dialog seemed unnecessary, and she may be a bit too tolerant of her brother’s actions.  
There were some scenes I wasn’t sure were supposed to be surreal or not. The butterflies are definitely surreal. I did like that surreal angle, reminded me of Pan’s Labyrinth/ Birdman.
I really liked the Act 3 scenario and the comparisons with the Noah story, instead of water we have fire. That was a very imaginative angle and I think that would play well with an audience.
You might be a bit too specific on certain descriptions in scenes, choices of music and so on, not leaving a lot of room for alternatives. The descriptions feel more like they belong in a novel. But some of those descriptions are very charming i.e. like an old Samsonite suitcase covered with psych hospital stickers.
The final scenes after the fire may be a bit too mushy for me. You don’t necessarily have to show Eugene meeting his brother in law’s attorney friend.
I would have like to see a better resolve on Eugene’s mental illness issues. The two butterflys plot line was not resolved (unless I missed it).
Animals are very important in the story, I was thinking some of it could be cut, but of course, when you get to Act 3 you realise why there are so many. It goes without saying that filming this many animals is going to be a nightmare, even with CGI. The animals play a more important part than, let’s say, Turner and Hooch. You could tone some of the stuff down with the insects, although I really liked the scene where Eugene went back to rescue the bee from certain incineration.
Some stuff you describe in action which you don’t need to because what it is is right in front of us. E.g. the ‘Purple Haze’ description on page 20.
I’d cut out the in-jokes, e.g. ‘He screams in a manly voice… not really, he screams like a little girl’. I was warned about doing this myself.
I would like to see specs from Eugene’s inventor notebook, I can’t recall seeing any in the script. You could have a lot of fun with that.
I think you basically have a very good story here, and it would make a great vehicle for a veteran comic actor – I’m particularly thinking this would be a good Michael Keaton vehicle, especially after Birdman.
Posted by: Bogey, December 2nd, 2017, 11:17am; Reply: 3
Frank-

I read 7 pages, but sorry to say that there was so little happening that I bailed. I think you could easily condense those 7 pages into 3.

Also, you should avoid unfilmables. Examples:

- Page 1: DOCTOR MCKEE, 60, but looking much older [Is his actual age vs. how old he appears relevant?]

- Page 5: She slipped on the loose carpet that Eugene promised to fix and forgot. [How do we know that Eugene promised to fix the carpet?]

- Page 6: Eugene’s sister. She has a keen sense of her surroundings, which comes from raising three young boys. [How do we know that she's raising three young boys?]

Good luck.
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