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g_howie View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Groupie
NYC Midnight Groupie

Joined: 24 Mar 2021
Location: Scotland
Status: Offline
Points: 106
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote g_howie Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2021 at 8:15am

I placed 5th in my group which I am extremely happy with. The feedback was very encouraging and really helpful. I completely agree on giving Douglas' a bit more background on his relationship with Kier. I also think the whisky's existence as well as it's value should have been much more concrete and present much earlier.- this would've solidified Douglas' motivations to get to and explore the island. 

Big Tam seems to have divided the judges opinion. I can see the point that he didn't add much to the outcome of the story. I think my intention with Big Tam was to ground the antagonists and overall story slightly so it didn't get too cartoonishly violent or dark. But yes, I agree he could have had more to do! 


''Baroness Brandy'' by Gordon Howie -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY –

{1744}  You did such a great job creating the world of this story, particularly the weathered, rocky cliffs of the island. I was immediately drawn into Douglas's panicked quest to find something of value to pay off his debts, and his treacherous journey into the tidal cave kept me hooked until the end. I also really liked the character of Big Tam, and your writing worked well to show his personality and sympathy for Douglas. Nice work! 

{2120}  A fast-paced and gripping story as Douglas is put under ever-growing threatening pressure to pay of debts to the menacing Kier. The narrative ends with a bittersweet ending for Douglas as he receives his need in finally finding some peace with the relationship he had with his estranged father, rather than his want of just finding easy money. Douglas is a determined protagonist who we gain sympathy for and root for him to win making his inevitable doomed ending ever more heart breaking. 

{2044}  The momentum of the script pulled me straight through to the end. The pacing was excellent and the intercuts between POV's was well done also. 



{1744}  I think it would be helpful to have just a little more background knowledge about how Douglas came to owe money to Keir. I also think it might make the ending stronger if it had some ambiguity to it—that is, maybe the waves don't come up to the top of the island, and there's a chance of Douglas surviving the night. 

{2120}  Thought might be given to showing us more of the imminent dangers of the island much earlier on, for example when Douglas meets with Shona. If we were to find out here that the island posed great danger of drowning itself every night, then later, when Douglas gets the warning of being left there, our concern for Douglas’s safety would have an even stronger emotional reaction from the audience. Perhaps too it might be Keir that threatens Douglas about leaving him on the island if he doesn’t find the money, which will enhance the suspense further as currently, it’s not until they get to the island that we find out that he faces peril and might serve better if this reveal was used as early as possible instead. 

{2044}  There is a lot of build up in the Big Tam character, but in the end nothing happens. Even though his character seems to care about Douglas, it didn't add anything to the story because his feelings for Douglas didn't change or alter anything. The story would have been essentially the same even if Tam hated Douglas. If you are going to focus on a character that much , then his actions need to have more of a bearing on the story.

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jugglet View Drop Down
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NYC Midnight Newbie

Joined: 28 May 2021
Location: UK
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Points: 34
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jugglet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 May 2021 at 12:25pm

 I placed 2nd in my group not bad for a first timer :)

''B ZERO FIVE'' by thomas leadbetter -   WHAT THE JUDGES LIKED ABOUT YOUR STORY - 

{2089}  There are a lot of great ideas in this, and the story feels very original and high-concept. I especially love the exoskeletons - they remind me of the robots from Laputa in their description.

You've described your action very well, and the conclusion is very heartfelt, just the right balance we need after the exciting and fast-paced action.

Your dialogue is strong too, and I think you have an interesting cast of characters here. There's room for improvement and development, but there's also a lot of potential in this piece. I think you've crafted an interesting world, and I'd love to see more in it.

You've included a 'boss' character throughout, and the 'immortality' subject is present too. You've written a complete sci-fi story with a beginning, middle, and end, and you've submitted this within your page limit.

Overall, a good effort. Good luck with your subsequent drafts and future development.  

{1689}  Strong opening as Razz attempts to make sense of the Exos' repetitive refrain of B ZERO FIVE. I love how Laston's outburst clarifies the dire nature of the situation and the desperate need for water. Strong turn when Laston discovers that the Exos have a Life Span. 

 {2075}  The structure is well written and enables the story to move along at a good pace. There is a nice build within the story and this is paid off by the big reveal scenes at the end of the film.

There is also a good use of conflict and emotion within the structure so that the audience are kept on their feet throughout with the continued action and the constant threat to the main characters.

Laston is also well developed and it is nice to see a strong female that is able to look after herself and does not need a man to come and rescue her from difficult situations that she may find herself in.  WHAT THE JUDGES FEEL NEEDS WORK - 

{2089}  I've highlighted a couple of points I feel that you could work on to improve this piece.

Pg. 1 - 'The frozen wasteland is no longer what it once was. Humans had perished or so the AI presumed.' Your opening line of scene description/action could use some work. This seems prosaic, or information that the audience would only know if they had a script in hand. Write the visual. We open on a frozen wasteland. Then into the exoskeleton.

Pg. 1 - The Exoskeletons' dialogue should be displayed in (V.O.) as it's presented through technology.

Pg. 1 - 'EXT. UNKNOWN' - a location can't be unknown. It has to be a place where the scene takes place. It's a technical marking. Just write 'cruise ship' - we need to know where the scene is and how the action in it corresponds. Again, always remember that this isn't prose. It's a technical document telling a story and explaining the visuals on screen.

Pg. 2 - Script the code as (V.O.) dialogue if they're saying it out loud.

Pg. 3 - 'Before the exos took over...' how does the audience know this information? It's tertiary unless it's shown on screen. The audience won't have the script.

You explain this all in expository dialogue anyway, so remove it here.  

{1689}  You have a strong world and a great character in Laston. A couple of things to think about. ONE -- Don't be coy. Draw a strong connection between B ZERO FIVE and Laston's discovery. Make sure we understand what is going to happen next -- or better yet -- show us. Go for the strong ending. TWO -- You have a rich idea here. I think you can develop it into a full length screenplay. Let this be the introduction to that world. What is the turning point? How are Razz and Laston going to have a showdown? What comes next after their discoveries of each other? Do they draw the right or wrong conclusions from their discoveries? THREE -- Make room for this resolution by cutting back on the water outburst. We get it. Move on as quickly as you can to the critical need to stop the Exos so that they can supply themselves with water.  

{2075}  There are a few things that you may want to look into:

You should try and not convey important information within the action, as the audience will not be able to see this. For example the initial description of the world. If this is information that you feel is important to be portrayed, then it should be inserted as writing on the screen, or placed in a voiceover.

You should also make sure that you capitalize a character when they are introduced for the first time.

Lastly, it does feel as though there should be some mention of Laston's daughter before the reveal at the end, be it through a picture or her talking to other members of her party.

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Libby90 View Drop Down
NYC Midnight Newbie
NYC Midnight Newbie

Joined: 20 Mar 2021
Location: Australia
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Points: 79
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Libby90 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 May 2021 at 8:12pm

I came in 4th in my group which was awesome. The feedback was very encouraging, though with this being my first attempt at a screenplay I would have liked a bit more criticism to give me more of an idea of what to work on.


''On Mission'' 


{2143}  This is such a clever script and really creative response to the prescriptions for the task. The twist is a really satisfying pay off and the ending is perfect. I really enjoyed reading this script and feel it's a great example of how to use the 12 page format.  

{1774}  What a thrilling surprise! It seemed that Connor might've suffered some injury instead of him being a character in a game. The action in the game brought great moments of intrigue and adventure. Even real-life Mike found it difficult to set such compelling characters aside. Quite clever.  

{2058}  Overall this screenplay is well written, especially the action scenes. The opening sequence really draws the reader in and is high-paced and exciting. Then later when Connor goes to the basement with Peter and protects them. The descriptions are excellent and easy to visualize. The twist at the end is also quite enjoyable, adding another element to the script. It perfectly sums up everything that's going on. Great work.  


{2143}  Without being aware of the twist, I admit to finding the first two thirds a little confusing and slight. But as soon as I became aware what was happening (the reveal of the screen) I absolutely got what was happening. And wanted to go back and re-read the first part to uncover the clues you'd very subtly laid.  

{1774}  You could play with the reader more by offering additional clues to this being a game. The glitches and 300 credits did provide hints, but it's truly interesting when the errors confuse Connor (and the reader).  

{2058}  While this story has a very complete and well-structured plot. At times it doesn't really seem that his head injury causes his world to fall apart. The case drops through the table, the arm he sees poking through the solid wall. While these are interesting and confuse Connor. They don't seem to have an effect on the plot itself. The mission goes off without a hitch (until the twist ending). This element definitely makes the script more interesting but doesn't read like it's an integral part of the story or belongs in the logline. That being said, this is a great script. Keep up the fantastic work.

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