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Captain Planet
07-24-2003, 02:19 AM
Hello,

Below are more scenes from my first script. These are the same characters from here (http://ww.joblo.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=57023&highlight=my+first+attempt).

Few things to note. Any word that looks like this: *word*-- means it is underlined or should be emphasized by the actor. I can't get underline to work in CODE.

One of the settings, THE CONTROL ROOM-- is established earlier on the script as a small room full of audio equipment that has a large window pane that looks out into the MAIN RECORDING AREA. Kinda like those rooms outside interogation rooms where the cops can observe an interview silenty. The glass in the CONTROL ROOM is just regular see through glass though. The above may seem frivolous, but is important to the geography of the scene.

The character of Duffy is introduced in an earlier scene. This is what I wrote about him then:
He is well built, white- mid 50s, dressed in a body length brown trench coat with a white shirt peeking through. He has a sharp narrow face, and a near permanently furrowed brow that indicates a long career of gritty police work.

Please note: opinions expressed by the characters do not always reflect mine. I only say this, because I got kicked out my writing class after sharing this scene plus another scene involving some contreversial situations involving Arab Americans. I hope to post that soon and let you decide.

One more disclaimer: This is not a serial killer film. This is just a subplot.

Read on Below in the next post:

Captain Planet
07-24-2003, 02:21 AM
INT. RECORDING STUDIO - HALLWAY - DAY

A SHACKLED MAN is CENTER FRAME as he walks towards the
camera flanked by three POLICE OFFICERS on each side. One
can sense the atmosphere of danger in the air.

Severe apprehension can be read on the POLICE OFFICERS'
faces. One of the OFFICERS is Duffy, on the Shackled Man's
direct right. Unlike the others, he is cool as ice.

The Shackled Man wears a muffle over his face. His piercing
eyes burn through. He is a white man (mid forties), average
height, and is loosing his hair. His hands are bound at
the front. He wears leg irons.

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - DAY

ON Gordon as he notices something. He gulps.

ON Rex. He faces Gordon. He reads his face and turns around.

The Shackled Man and the Officers have entered the MAIN
RECORDING AREA.

GORDON
(Hushed tone)
It's showtime.

Gordon and Rex stand. The others stop short of them. Duffy
steps forward.

DUFFY
Gentleman...

GORDON
Duffy...I see you've brought a
guest.

DUFFY
Let's get the introductions out of
the way.
(beat)
McCabe, this is X...
(Indicates Gordon)
...and this is Y.
(Indicates Rex)

Tentative waves from Gordon and Rex.

REX
(Barely audible)
Hi ya...

McCABE's HEAVY BREATHING can be heard. Although he is
wearing a muffle, we can tell he is smiling broadly.

He speaks.

MCCABE
What are you the algebra twins?

He speaks...with an English accent? Yes, our serial killer
sounds cockney.

MCCABE
What did your mammas' call you?
Where's the harm? Be dead in a
week.

DUFFY
No, absolutely not. No names.
(Reaffirming to
Gordon and Rex)
No names, you got that?

REX
Got it, D.

McCabe laughs. Duffy rolls his eyes.

DUFFY
He knows *my* name, you idiot.

Duffy seems to really hate Rex. This catches McCabe's eye.

DUFFY
Let's just do this thing.

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - MOMENTS LATER

Everyone is gathered around the EQUIPMENT DESK. McCabe is
seated at the desk, his MUFFLE REMOVED. He sits very still
and very straight. His hands are still bound but he is
able to place them on the desk. Every movement of his body
is slow and deliberate. He is very methodical.

GORDON
Do you understand the process--
what needs to be done?

MCCABE
Yes X, I do.

GORDON
Don't be afraid to voice your
objection where the film makers
have taken liberties with the truth.

MCCABE
Afraid? Me?

Gordon and Duffy share a look.

GORDON
Rex, fix up his mic.

A microphone lies on the table near McCabe's hand. It's
lead has not been plugged into it. Without thinking, Rex
reaches for the microphone.

ZIP! One of the Officers freaks out and whips out his
pistol, WAVING it at McCabe and Rex. He is a young cop
whose head is COMPLETELY SHAVEN.

OFFICER #1
(Shaky)
BACK AWAY! BACK AWAY FROM THE
SUSPECT!

There is mass hysteria. What is happening?

Rex is frozen. Gordon looks frantically at Duffy begging
him to do something.

DUFFY
Office Banes, holster your weapon.
(Banes doesn't
comply. He's lost)
I SAID HOLSTER YOUR WEAPON, OFFICER
BANES! NOW!

Officer BANES is breathing heavily. Throughout all this,
McCabe is cool as a cucumber. His head has not even turned
towards Banes. Then...

... his head slowly turns in the direction of the drawn
pistol. He looks up at Banes, his face challenging the
young officer to shoot him down.

DUFFY
(Mild; calming)
Don't freak out on me, Jim.

Duffy's outreached hand slowly guides the weapon down.

DUFFY
Slowly...slowly...

Gordon shoots Duffy a wide-eyed "What the hell was that?!" -
look.

McCabe turns to Rex, who is still catching his breath,
terrified.

MCCABE
Don't worry, Z. I've never killed
a *man* before.

INT. CONTROL ROOM - DAY

Gordon is recovering as he double checks his equipment.

Rex is in the MAIN RECORDING AREA with McCabe. The Officers
watch him like a hawk.

Duffy walks into the room and shuts the door. Now the room
is completely sound proof-- they can speak their mind.

GORDON
What's up with Kojack?

Duffy sighs. It's his bad and he knows it.

DUFFY
He's a just a rookie. Wasn't ready
for this. Shouldn't have brought
him along. That was my mistake.
I'm sorry.

Gordon seemingly accepts the apology but still looks shaken.

DUFFY
Don't worry, he's never killed a
*man* before.

GORDON
Oh great. 27 victims and none of
them had a penis. What a relief.

Duffy can't read Gordon. Is he joking, or still bitter?

Gordon stares out into the MAIN RECORDING AREA.

GORDON
Look at him. Imagine the will power
it takes to rape and kill that
many woman. And not always in that
order, I hear.

DUFFY
Nope...it was never in that order.
He's a necrophiliac. Know what
that is? Google it and find out.
Had to do some research before I
testified at the trial. Didn't
want to look like a bonehead in
front of the jury. This guy was
something else. He wanted to break
records; make Bundy look like a
boy scout. 27? That's just a number.
That's 27 woman we know of. He
won't talk, though. Won't tell us
where the bones are buried. I don't
blame him. What's in it for him?
No DA is gonna take the needle off
the table for a few bodies.
Closure's nice, but justice is
supreme.

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - MOMENTS LATER

Rex is seated opposite McCabe. The Officers flank the
killer, watching him like a hawk. Bane seems to have
recovered.

Everybody is silent. They all seem to be waiting for
something.

McCabe's gaze is transfixed on Rex.

Rex senses this. It makes him very uncomfortable. He doesn't
know where to look. Occasionally, he sneaks a look at
McCabe.

INT. CONTROL ROOM - CONTINUOUS

Gordon impatiently looks at his watch.

GORDON
When is this going to arrive?

DUFFY
I don't know. It should be here.

GORDON
We can't start without the film.
You do know that, don't you?

DUFFY
It'll be here.

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - CONTINUOUS

MCCABE
You a faggot, Y?

OFFICER #2
Keep your mouth shut, McCabe!

McCabe turns to OFFICER #2. A chill goes down his spine.

DUFFY (O.S.)
What's going on!?

The Officers whip around to see Duffy with his head poking
out of the CONTROL ROOM.

OFFICER #2
Nothing chief, it's under control.

Duffy grudgingly heads back inside.

MCCABE
(To Rex)
So, Y-- why oh why, haven't you
answered my question?

Rex doesn't know what to say. He looks to the officers for
support. Nothing.

MCCABE
I'll take your silence as a 'yes'.

REX
What?

MCCABE
He speaks! So, it's a no then?

REX
No to what?

MCCABE
Do you find men sexually attractive?
(Off Rex's confused
look; leans forward)
Do men give you a boner?

OFFICER #2
Watch your mouth, McCabe.

MCCABE
(Phony)
I'm surry, I'm surry...

REX
No.

MCCABE
I was just checkin'. These days,
faggot don't look like faggots no
more. Back in the good old days,
you know where you stand. Faggots
nancied around in their sisters'
clothing, and men were men-- real
men. Nowadays you can't pick a
fudge packer in the crowd. Can
you? So I was just checkin', that's
all.

INT. CONTROL ROOM - MOMENTS LATER

Duffy and Gordon stare silently observing a conversation
begin between Rex and McCabe.

DUFFY
Can they hear us?
(Gordon shakes his
head)
Too bad we can't hear them either.

GORDON
Well, I don't know about that.

Gordon flicks a button and the CONTROL ROOM comes alive
with sounds of the MAIN RECORDING AREA. Duffy is impressed.

McCabe is talking.

MCCABE (O.S.)
So what are you tellin' me, Z?

REX (O.S.)
I just don't get this girl...

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - CONTINUOUS

REX (CONT'D)
...some days she's flirty, friskier
than a customs agent. And then
there are other days when she's so
cold she brings the room temperature
down.

McCabe and Rex are slightly chummier than we last left
them.

MCCABE
Let me ask you something. Is she a
14.9?

REX
Fourteen point...I dunno what that
means.

MCCABE
On a fuckability scale of zero to
ten-- is she a 14.9?

Rex smiles, blushing, embarrassed at McCabe's sexual
frankness.

REX
Yeah, I suppose so.

MCCABE
Those bitches are hard to get under
control. Believe you me, I've tried.
(Points to scar on
his face)
See this? 14.9. Strong bitch, she
was.
(Reminiscing fondly)
I killed her, though.

REX
Oh...

MCCABE
But back to your problem. I take
it she's of the rotating fan
variety.
(Off Rex's confused
look)
Oh, I don't expect you to know
what that is. It's a little theory
I've been cookin' up in the many,
many hours of solitude I am blessed
with. You see, Z, it's like this:
It's a hot stinkin' day and you're
stuck in the waiting room from
hell. In the corner of this tiny
fuckin' room is your only relief--
a rotating fan, no less. It's a
tease, though. Cause it can only
ever blow air in one direction.
You get that relieving gush of
cold air. You revel in it...but
then it leaves you a like cheating
whore. It's a tease. Like givin' a
Somali kid a can soup and tellin'
him piss orf when he wants a can
opener. Once everyone's had their
turn, it comes back. At which point
you're like: "No, sorry. You'll
just break my heart again". You
gotta be like that with this bitch
who's stringin' you along.
Personally, I'D GUT HER AND FUCK
HER CORPSE! But that's just me.



CONTINUED BELOW:

Captain Planet
07-24-2003, 02:22 AM
INT. CONTROL ROOM - CONTINUOUS

Gordon and Duffy have been privy to McCabe's relationship
advice.

GORDON
McCabe's a little cheery for someone
on the verge of extinction.

Duffy smirks.

DUFFY
He thinks the hand of God is going
to come down and save him at the
last minute. So he's not worried.
(beat)
He's taken a shining to your pal
though.

GORDON
Who? Rex? Nah...

DUFFY
I'd say McCabe's shopping around
for a protege-- someone to carry
on his life's work.

GORDON
Well, he's barking up the wrong
tree.

DUFFY
Don't be so sure. Under 'ambitions'--
you know what McCabe wrote in his
yearbook? 'To rid the world of
hunger'. We think he ditched his
Mother Teresa ambitions at around
the same age as our Rexy boy. Word
is, Mac resorted to killing woman
because he had trouble pulling the
ladies. This sound like anyone you
know?

GORDON
Yeah, Rex struggles with the ladies,
alright. But he's no killer.
Absolutely not.

DUFFY
We've already established he has a
dark side. Those phone calls he
made to the pizza place-- that was
some scary shit-- don't you agree?

GORDON
It was one phone call. He was just
fucking around. I was in the room--
he was probably just showing off.

DUFFY
(Insinuating)
Why would he feel the need to that?

Gordon stops and narrows his eyes at Duffy.

GORDON
Look, if you are gonna suggest
some sort of sexual thing--

DUFFY
I'm just saying, he could be looking
to you as some sort of ideal father
figure. One that was perhaps missing
in his own life. McCabe's father
was an alcoholic who beat on his
mother. And he hated him for it.

Gordon begins to reevaluate the situation with what he
know about Rex's father.

Without as much of a word he leaves the CONTROL ROOM and
steps into:

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - CONTINUOUS

We follow Gordon as he approaches Rex and McCabe.

MCCABE
...woman are dogs. They should be
put down like 'em.

McCabe notices Gordon standing with his arms crossed. Rex
catches on next.

McCabe smiles broadly.

MCCABE
Ah Mr. X...I was just chatting
with your friend. He's quiet the
fellow.

Rex forces a weak, embarrassed smile at this endorsement
from a mass murderer.

Gordon ignores McCabe and approaches Rex.

GORDON
Can, I speak to you for a sec?

REX
Huh?

Gordon tugs on Rex's sweater and stands him up.

GORDON
I just want a word.

REX
About what?

Gordon ushers him aside away from McCabe's earshot.

They stand face to face. McCabe observes with a steely
resolve.

GORDON
Why are you socializing with the
murderer?

REX
I am not.

GORDON
Yes you are. And Duffy heard every
word of it. Are you out of your
fucking mind? He's a police officer
for Christ's sake. The phone call
and now this. He thinks you are a
regular nut job.

Rex, looks at Duffy standing in the CONTROL ROOM, watching
them. He refocuses on Gordon.

GORDON
Just don't say another word to
him. What were you trying to do?
Form a relationship? Become prison
pen pals? 27 women, Rex. He killed
27 woman. Come Friday, he's a dead
man.

Ronaldinho
07-24-2003, 03:00 AM
Okay. Where to begin? I want to knock some format stuff out of the way. It's a minor point, here, but I'm going to mention it.

You're opening is just confusing, largely for format issues. The man on the right, the man on the left, the shackled man.

You don't need to hide folks names from us. On screen, you get a face when you see somebody. On the page, you need a similar hook to hang your hat on, or else you get lost. "McCABE stands shackled between two police officers." It's shorter, more to the point, and helps me not get confused. And I got confused. I had to stop and go back and reread to make sure I had who everyone is. That's bad. Can-be-fatal bad.

Similarly, you use too many caps. They're a distraction. They take me out of my reading rythym, and that hurts comprehension.

The "on gordon's" and walking towards the camera--it doens't help. It muddles things. I know you don't believe me when you say this, but you're making the script harder to read. You can write it cleaner--I know you can write it cleaner because through most of the script you're not writing like that, and I don't have any trouble following you. But when you do that, I have to work to figure out what the story is. That's bad.

(hushed tone)--leave it out. Not neccesary. And the (beat)--the elipsis accomplishes that (although you don't need it, either. Again, you're mucking up your lines, making them harder to read. That's not a good thing.)

Okay, that's enough for format. Let's move on to content.

The whole underlining words of dialog thing? I think you've found a place where it's appropriate: the second time the word men is emphasized. That's when it's crucial, for content reasons. The line doesn't make sense without it. (although in truth we could figure it out from the context, but it's okay). All the other ones? You're directing from the page. Drop it.

Contentwise, I really think I've seen this before. The super-badass serial killer. Sorry... you've got to work harder than this to grab me, because, well, I've seen Silence of the Lambs. It's become a cliche. Even the muffle--I assume you mean some sort of mask. That was terrifying in SOTL because I hadn't seen it before. But sometime--perhaps it was in Con Air when they pulled the mask off to reveal Steve Buschemi--it became a joke. A cliche. I read that and I think, "crap, another SOTL knockoff."

Maybe this isn't that--but that's what I'm thinking until you prove me wrong. And you don't prove me wrong in these pages, which means you've got a strike against you already, and a pretty big one.

The rookie-cop-freaking thing is a little, well, again, I've been there. I've done that. You really need to push yourself to come up with something new here. What you're doing isn't /bad/--it's just that I've seen it before.

And then we've got all this control room chatter. It's dull. It's dry, exposition. You're spoon feeding me information and I don't like it. All this chatter-- I don't know. It's dull. Basically, once we get the guys in the room I'm waiting for something to happen, and nothing does. So I start to skim, something happening yet? Nope.

And it just keeps going-- all this exposition. Zero dramatic content. Here's the thing: in movies, people can't sit around and talk. They have to DO things. They have to want things that they're not getting. Otherwise film gets boring, very quickly.

30 seconds of film can be an eternity. And you've got pages and pages of stuff here. And it's not bad dialog--you've clearly got some interesting thoughts, some good lines, I can tell you've thought about this and worked on it.

The problem isn't the surface. The problem is that these scenes are structually unsound-- there is no unresolved want. There is no dramatic tension.

Don't be discouraged. This is hard stuff, which doesn't come to anyone naturally. But keep working on it. You'll get there.

Captain Planet
07-24-2003, 06:52 AM
Thanks for your criticisms. I appreciate it. I agree with you regarding nearly everything. I just have a few clarifications.

Similarly, you use too many caps. They're a distraction. They take me out of my reading rythym, and that hurts comprehension.
Can you point out which ones, please. Is there a rule to caps? I capped some important stuff like COMPLETELY SHAVEN because on screen, it is pretty easy to notice a shaved head. On the page, people might miss it, and wonder why Gordon calls him Kojack.

And the (beat)--the elipsis accomplishes that (although you don't need it, either. Again, you're mucking up your lines, making them harder to read. That's not a good thing.)
Which beat are you referring to? Didn't get that one, sorry.

Contentwise, I really think I've seen this before. The super-badass serial killer. Sorry... you've got to work harder than this to grab me, because, well, I've seen Silence of the Lambs. It's become a cliche. Even the muffle--I assume you mean some sort of mask. That was terrifying in SOTL because I hadn't seen it before. But sometime--perhaps it was in Con Air when they pulled the mask off to reveal Steve Buschemi--it became a joke. A cliche. I read that and I think, "crap, another SOTL knockoff."

Let me try to tentaveily explain away this criticism. This script isn't about a serial killer. It's about two guys whose previous biggest hurdle was dealing with egotestical celebrities. They are forced into this session as a result of a deal with Duffy to forget about a couple of misdemeanors. So when you thrust this bad-ass serial killer into this environment, isnt't that kinda funny, or amusing. In Con-Air, Buscemi was a bad-ass among bad-asses. Here McCabe is bad-ass among ordinary people. McCabe being this larger than life cliche is kinda part of the joke. Anyway, tell me what you think.

And it just keeps going-- all this exposition. Zero dramatic content. Here's the thing: in movies, people can't sit around and talk. They have to DO things. They have to want things that they're not getting. Otherwise film gets boring, very quickly.
I want the Gordon-Duffy relationship to turn into father-son relationship. Because of Gordon's loss of a father and Duffy's loss of his son. So I just thought I'd give them a bonding session. That is subtext to the scene. You probably read it as expository because I didn't do a good enough job communicating my point or because you are reading the scene out of context.

A question about exposition. I always thought it was when person A said dialogue out aloud to person B for the sake of the audience. Even if person B knows this information and person A know person B knows this information. I bring it up because Gordon has no idea about most of the stuff Duffy tells him. He's learning for the first time, like the audience.

And it's not bad dialog--you've clearly got some interesting thoughts, some good lines, I can tell you've thought about this and worked on it.
Thanks.

Just for the sake of interest, below is the scene that sets up the Serial Killer scene above:


INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - DAY

Rex answers the intercom.

REX
Yeah?

DUFFY
It's detective Duffy. I am looking
for Pereira.

Gordon's ears perked up as soon as he heard Duffy's voice.

GORDON
Now what?

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - MOMENTS LATER

Duffy has entered.

GORDON
Didn't expect to see you back so
soon.

DUFFY
Is that a fact?
(Scans the room)
What are you having a party?

Duffy is referring to the table full of food.

GORDON
We just had a client...it's all
catered.
(Picks up a tray)
Here, have some.

DUFFY
Is this a bribe?

Duffy's playing around. Gordon notices this.

GORDON
No, it's left overs. We've got
salmon and grilled tuna, cucumber,
the works.

DUFFY
Don't like seafood.
(Indicates another
plate)
Watchu got there?

GORDON
That's cheese and bacon.

DUFFY
Toss me a cheese and bacon.

Gordon serves him the indicated plate. Duffy picks up a
party sized bacon roll and takes a bite.

DUFFY
Mmm...

REX
(Indicating bacon
roll)
Isn't that cannibalism?

Rex is chuffed at his own cleverness. Duffy is less
impressed. Gordon is mortified.

Duffy takes his time. He patiently chews his food while
staring down Rex who becomes increasingly fearful at the
reprisals.

DUFFY
Comments like that, you best keep
to yourself. You're in enough
trouble.

REX
Me?

DUFFY
Yeah, you. You threaten to shoot
the delivery boy if the pizza wasn't
to your liking-- not smart.

REX
That? That was just a joke.

DUFFY
They didn't think it was funny.
The manager lodged a complaint. I
told them you were harmless. Don't
make me change my mind.
(Turns to Gordon)
Listen...can we speak outside for
a moment.

GORDON
Yeah...let me get my jacket.

EXT. STUDIO ENTRANCE - MOMENTS LATER

Duffy and Gordon have been talking for a few minutes when
we join them.

ON Gordon who looks apprehensive and flustered.

GORDON
I don't know about this. I
mean...we're not really equipped
to handle this kind of client.

DUFFY
We'll handle the security. All you
need to worry about is what you
normally do.

GORDON
Christ...

DUFFY
You'll be completely safe.

GORDON
You know, *he* punched *me*.

DUFFY
I know, I know...but these are
celebrities. They can spin all
sorts of fairy tales and make your
life generally unpleasant.

GORDON
If Brando tries anything, you can
siphon it-- nip it in the bud?

DUFFY
Absolutely. It'll be like it never
happened. Back at the precinct,
they call me the Magic Man. You
wanna know why? Because I make
things disappear. You help us out--
I'll make it all peachy again--
I'll make it vanish.

Gordon is cornered. He has no choice. Unenthusiastically
he asks:

GORDON
When?

DUFFY
It has to be before Friday; before
he's executed.

GORDON
So, that gives us what...6 days to
do this thing.

DUFFY
Great...it's agreed then. I'll be
in touch.

Duffy begins to leave.

GORDON
Duffy...

DUFFY
Yeah?

GORDON
Why do this?

Duffy stops in his tracks and returns.

DUFFY
There are one hundred thousand
reasons. That's the offer on the
table if we can pull this off.
(beat)
Do you know anything about bullet
proof vests? They do squat. With
the kind of arsenal on the street,
we might as well be wearing paper
mache. But there's these new vests,
new design, lightweight, real sleek
but real expensive. I am wearing
one now, can you tell?
(Duffy sighs and
continues)
One vest's not enough, though.
Hundred grand buys a lot of vests,
saves a lot of lives. If you help
us out, then you're a life saver,
my boy. Keep that in mind if you
are having second thoughts.

ON Gordon: he says nothing but is clearly less hesitant
than before.

DUFFY
Alright...I gotta be somewhere.
(He takes a few
steps and turns
back)
I'll cya later, Gordon.

GORDON
Yeah, take care.

Duffy leaves. A faint smile across Gordon's lips as he
realizes that this is the first time Duffy has called him
by his first name. Gordon doesn't realize this yet, but
he's taken a shining to Duffy and perhaps vice versa.

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - CONTINUOUS

Rex has been awaiting Gordon's return ever since he left.

Speak of the devil, he enters.

REX
What was that about?

GORDON
Guess who's coming to dinner?

INT. MAIN RECORDING AREA - MOMENTS LATER

Gordon and Rex are seated opposite each other. Rex looks
flabbergasted.

REX
(Protesting)
He's a serial killer.

GORDON
Yeah, I know. But Duffy assured me
that we'd be safe-- that he'd take
care of security.

REX
I can't believe you agreed to this
shit without asking me.

GORDON
What was I suppose to do? He holds
the cards here. Besides the Brando
incident, there's your death threats
to Pizza Palace, and my abusive
phone call to the housing
commission.

Gordon leans over, his face buried in his hands.

REX
Duffy knows about that?

Gordon, looking up.

GORDON
He's knows everything. It's all on
record. A shit storm waiting to
bear down. We do this one session
and we're in the clear...for good.

REX
Jesus...I just hope this guy doesn't
end up wearing my face like a ski
mask.


I can cut this:

DUFFY
Absolutely. It'll be like it never
happened. Back at the precinct,
they call me the Magic Man. You
wanna know why? Because I make
things disappear. You help us out--
I'll make it all peachy again-- I'll make
it vanish.



to just: Absolutely. We just need this one favor from you first.

The stuff about the bulletproof vests: I'd like your opinions on that. Again, I am trying to bring Duffy and Gordon closer. Thus Duffy revealing his motivations and all.

Ronaldinho
07-24-2003, 03:11 PM
Can you point out which ones, please. Is there a rule to caps? I capped some important stuff like COMPLETELY SHAVEN because on screen, it is pretty easy to notice a shaved head. On the page, people might miss it, and wonder why Gordon calls him Kojack.

No--people won't miss it. Not if you're writing well, and not providing unneccesary information. Have a little faith in your reader.

The rule? Cap a character's name the first time their introduced.

After that? You may occasionally cap a word for emphasis. But I mean occasionally. I mean fewer than five-times-a-script occasionally.

And that's it.

Which beat are you referring to? Didn't get that one, sorry.


All of 'em, actually. You don't need them. Even the ones in the new section. You also don't need the (sighs and continues). Don't interupt a line to tell us how somebody is delivering a line, unless it's neccesary for comprehension.


So when you thrust this bad-ass serial killer into this environment, isnt't that kinda funny, or amusing. In Con-Air, Buscemi was a bad-ass among bad-asses. Here McCabe is bad-ass among ordinary people.


Well it's possible that I just completely missed something, tonally, because I wasn't picking this up from the beginning. But I didn't think this was funny. I didn't see the joke. I don't see the humor, really-- although if it's very dry, it's possible that I'd ahve to get it in context to understand it.


I want the Gordon-Duffy relationship to turn into father-son relationship. Because of Gordon's loss of a father and Duffy's loss of his son. So I just thought I'd give them a bonding session. That is subtext to the scene. You probably read it as expository because I didn't do a good enough job communicating my point or because you are reading the scene out of context.

Here's where I think it'd be a mistake to assume that context is providing the problem. If you want people to bond, you have to really have them bond. But it has to happen in a dramatic context-- I read it as expository because it is expository. And I understand that the have family history issues--it's all there on the page.

But the scene is dull because it's just idle chitchat. Even if it's important idle chitchat to them, it's just idle chitchat. There's nothing at stake in the scene. Neither of them would lose anything of significance if one of them was called away and they couldn't finish the conversation just now.


A question about exposition. I always thought it was when person A said dialogue out aloud to person B for the sake of the audience. Even if person B knows this information and person A know person B knows this information. I bring it up because Gordon has no idea about most of the stuff Duffy tells him. He's learning for the first time, like the audience.


Well, one person telling another something they both know is one of the ways you see exposition handled, badly, in amateur scripts. But exposition, in general, is any information about the characters' prior states that you have to tell the audience.

And you have to disguise it, because it's boring. I talked a little about disguising it in another thread, just yesterday. There has to be a reason why the characters would say this now, there has to be something at stake.

And if the stakes are high enough, your characters can say just about anything.

This new scene has all of the same problems. It's not neccesary-- there's nothing at stake. It's just a chance for the characters to stand around and talk. It's slow and it's talky and there's nothing at stake.

And you've got way to many parentheticals and elipses. Don't direct from the page. The underlining is unneccesary. Your lines should speak for themselves.

This as setup doesn't help the other scene. It makes it worse, because it's too much. It's just folks standing around yakking.