Author Topic: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855  (Read 3330 times)

Offline LukeGodfrey

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Recently posted this in the wrong thread I apologise, I have moved it to the right thread.

Okay I am in my final year of television and film at Plymouth College of Art.
I have recently dabbled in the arts of script writing despite most of our work being Improv, please give it a read, as much creative criticism as possible, please tell me things you think I should change.

Here is the script.


          FADE IN:

          EXT.FEMALES HOUSE - MORNING

          In a quiet suburban shared house, in the heart of Plymouth,
          run down, derelict appearing.

                                                     DISSOLVE TO:

          INT. FEMALES HOUSE - BEDROOM - MORNING

          POPPY, An outcast, drug fueled party animal, stumbles out of
          bed.
                         (Still intoxicated from the
                         previous night)

          

          POPPY, Crawls from her bed, into the bathroom and pauses as
          she looks into the mirror.

          Dazed and confused POPPY, An alarm bell chimes.
                         (A look of disgust on the face
                         of POPPY)

          POPPY, charges into her room, hitting the alarm to silent
          and begins to apply makeup over her unclean canvas from the
          night before.

          POPPY, turns music on at full volume, procrastinating from
          her current attempts to get ready for College.

          POPPY, Sits back and relaxes in her feeble attempt to get
          ready and pulls a spliff from her rucksack, and enjoys
          listening to her music.
                         (Euphoric appearance, high
                         facial impressions, with not a
                         care in the world)

                                                     DISSOLVE TO:

          EXT. MALE HOUSE - MORNING

          In a quiet suburban, religiously clean and tidy street,
          perfectly groomed appearance.

          INT. CHARLIE BEDROOM - MORNING

          CHARLIE, prized golden boy child, social recluse, academic
          master eagerly anticipates his alarm which is about to
          sound.

          CHARLIE, leaps out of bed, beginning his morning routine,
          into the bathroom to wash his face in front of the mirror,
          brushing his teeth, polishing his glasses.

          As CHARLIE finishes his morning routine, he is waiting his
          his alarm to switch it to silent.
                         (Alarm sounds, CHARLIE gently
                         presses it off)

          CHARLIE, begins to prepare his books, writing notes and sets
          in 5 minutes of revision time before leaving his house.

                                                       SWITCH TO:

          EXT.FEMALES HOUSE - MORNING

          INT.SUBURBAN DOORWAY - STREET - MORNING

          POPPY, unhinges the several locks on her front door and
          immediately leaves the house.
                         (Slamming the door)

          POPPY, struts down the road with generic cool girl routine
          texting her friends about the night before, emphasizing the
          use of drugs and the boys she was with.

          Heading for the a sharp 90 degree corner she is unable to
          see who is walking from the other direction, neglectfully
          she approaches the corner as if she owns the pathway.

                                                         FADE TO:

          EXT. MALE HOUSE - MORNING

          INT.SUBURBAN DOORWAY - STREET - MORNING

          CHARLIE, begins to leave his house, checking his mirror on
          exit.

                              CHARLIES MOTHER
                    Don't forget your lunch sweetheart!

                              CHARLIE
                    I'm off now, I'll see you after
                    class

          CHARLIE enters porch, opening the secure door leaving his
          house, timidly entering his quiet neighborhood, with no
          sense of security.

          CHARLIE, pulls his bag straps tight and walks down his road
          unaware of the incoming, train wreck POPPY; shy and unsure
          CHARLIE keeps to himself, looking at his feet and the ground
          as he walks in an attempt to gain no unwanted attention.

          Approaching the 90 degree corner from the opposite
          conjoining street to POPPY, CHARLIE is about to have the
          most attention on the street handed to him.

                                                          CUT TO:
          camera is position symmetric to corner seeing both angles of
          incoming street pathways.

          THE COLLISION - SUBURBAN STREET - MORNING

          POPPY AND CHARLIE Approach the corner in synchronization, at
          the same time, pace, neither paying attention to the
          possible incoming collision.

          Turning the corner, CHARLIE bumps into POPPY, scaring the
          life out of her.

          Flaying her arms out in displeasure POPPY immediately begins
          to shout at CHARLIE.

                              POPPY (ANGRY)
                    What the fuck man, do you own this
                    fucking road, are you stupid?

                              CHARLIE
                         (Timidly doesn't say anything)

                              POPPY
                    Are you going to say anything, or
                    are you just going to stand in the
                    way, fucking twat!

          CHARLIE doe not know what to do as he stares at the ground,
          to scared to answer back to CHLOES frantic over the top
          behavior, he begins to look up, checking out every part of
          POPPIES body scanning her with his eyes.

                              POPPY
                    Good enough look there? Want me to
                    strip naked for you? Look I don't
                    do this often but you can take a
                    picture, it might last a bit
                    longer.

          CHARLIE looks POPPY in the eyes with shear amazement at what
          she just said, almost immediately POPPY pushes through
          CHARLIE and carries on strutting down the road.

                              POPPY
                    What a fucking idiot

          CHARLIE turns around, and follows POPPY with his eyes as she
          walks away, plucking up the courage to run after her,
          catching up to her, he cowardly asks

                              CHARLIE
                    Are, are you in my English class?

          POPPY stares blankly at CHARLIE and mumbles

                              POPPY
                    English class? Maybe
                         (Confused, as she cannot
                         remember herself last
                         attending college)

                              CHARLIE
                    Are you going there now?

          POPPY gets a devilish look in her eye

                              POPPY
                    Is that your way of asking me out
                    on a date? Bumping into me in the
                    street and chasing after me, I'll
                    give it to you it's very inventive

          CHARLIE is stumped, hesitating on what he is about to say.

                              CHARLIE
                    N, n, n, nooooo, not at..

          Before CHARLIE has time to finish his words

                              POPPY
                    Oh come on then, ill walk with you
                    soppy bollocks

          POPPY grabs CHARLIE by the hand and drags him away with her

                                                   SLOW FADE OUT:

        



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« Last Edit: March 17, 2014, 09:20:53 AM by Alice, a Country Gal »

hillwalker3000

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2014, 06:14:38 AM »
The first thing I'd advise is you look closely at the Scene Headings and actions.

         EXT.FEMALES HOUSE - MORNING

Is a Females House different to a House? And if so, how will this be shown on-screen.

         In a quiet suburban shared house, in the heart of Plymouth, run down, derelict appearing.

I don't see a need for this ^ .

           INT. FEMALES HOUSE - BEDROOM - MORNING

Same problem again.

and now you're describing your MC instead of having her act out her part and speak. It's not the script-writer's job to do this.

         POPPY, An outcast, drug fueled party animal, stumbles out of bed.              (Still intoxicated from the previous night)

And you continue for an age telling us what she does and how she looks, followed by CHARLIE doing the same. Almost 400 words to describe two people getting up in the morning without a single line of dialogue.

a) It's boring
b) It's not a script. The director will decide what to show on-screen, the camera angles etc., and how the actors respond. Your job is to come up with a story - or more to the point, some dialogue.

Nothing happens until this point in the screenplay:

                 CHARLIES MOTHER
                    Don't forget your lunch sweetheart!
                              CHARLIE
                    I'm off now, I'll see you after
                    class


Does it add anything to the plot?

Then we have another +150 words describing even more 'action'.

This is not a screenplay. It's a story-board, so I wouldn't know where to begin to give you constructive criticism. But if you're looking to attract a studio with a view to getting someone to film this you have already blown it. No one is going to read through reams of stage directions in search of dialogue.

Maybe you should take a look at some of the free scripts available on-line for download and see what screenplays are meant to do.

H3K
« Last Edit: March 17, 2014, 09:21:19 AM by Alice, a Country Gal »

Offline patforster22

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2014, 09:27:46 AM »
Hi,

Like the concept and the contrast between the two characters works really well.

However, it needs quite a lot of work. These are some things that stood out to me:

-When Poppy is insulting Charlie, it doesn't sound like the kind of thing a normal human being would say. Play it a bit more naturalistic. I'd tone down the swearing too because I think it's too easy and cheapens the film a bit.
-The resolution happens too quickly. It's all build up and then the story is resolved far too quickly. You need something else to happen in that last scene for me
-As Hillwalker has said, you don't quite get the balance right in the story. We need less time on them getting ready and more time with the actual event of the story.
-You give so much useless information away in the action lines, that there is no way the director can convey that. You can't give all the background information in action lines, you need to scrap it and think of a way to show it or say it through dialogue. I had this problem with my script recently. Just go through and everything that the director can not show, get rid of it. It will be so much cleaner.
-You've put there being dialogue when "Charlie timidly says nothing". That should be an action line.

So what I'd say is, give an article on basic screenwriting a read, just to confirm your knowledge of the basics. This will tidy up your script no end. Hope I haven't been too harsh! Best of luck with your FMP,
Pat.

Offline heidi52

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2014, 09:38:15 AM »
Sorry, don't help people do their homework. You are in school to learn. You won't, if the answers are just given. Smacks of cheating, IMO.


Offline Gyppo

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2014, 10:53:53 AM »
I'm no scriptwriter, but I do have one question for you.  See the section below.

=====

 CHARLIE doe not know what to do as he stares at the ground,
          to scared to answer back to CHLOES frantic over the top
          behavior, he begins to look up, checking out every part of
          POPPIES body scanning her with his eyes.

=====

Who the hell is Chloe?  A disembodied name which drops in from nowhere and vanishes equally abruptly?

I suspect you originally called your character Chloe and then changed her to Poppy, but missed one ;-)

Others can tell where you're going wrong in layout, etc, but continuity errors like this are, quite frankly, inexcusable.  If you're in your final year I can't help wondering how you've managed to avoid learning some of what any writer would consider the basic building blocks.  I can only assume either you, or your teachers, or both, haven't been paying attention.

I'm not being cruel here.  Nor were the others who've answered you.  There are many who would have just dropped your offering into the bin without comment.  It's a tough world out there, so don't give people any excuse to say no.

Gyppo
My website is currently having a holiday, but will return like the $6,000,000 man.  Bigger, stronger, etc.

In the meantime, why not take pity on a starving author and visit my book sales page at http://stores.lulu.com/gyppo1

Offline Slow_Walker

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2014, 11:42:31 AM »
I think that I'm echoing what Hillwalker said...it reads more like a badly-written novel than a script...you start by telling us it's a female's house, then you move on to the female...and describe her...then the male's house, etc.

When you see the script for a Shakespeare play, it starts with "Dramatis Personae"...which is where you put all you need about "POPPY, An outcast, drug fueled party animal".  I appreciate that times have changed, but it still seems the most sensible place to introduce all your characters.  Whoever is putting the play on doesn't need to have the characters drip-fed to them in little bites, the way that you would introduce them to a "Joe Public" readership.

Offline greyman

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2014, 07:26:59 PM »
Feel like everything else has been said already, but I feel like I should mention that in any kind of writing, you don't need to use proper nouns in single-character scenes. What reads more fluidly?

A) Poppy woke up. Poppy went downstairs. Poppy ate cereal. Poppy needed to buy milk.

or

B) Poppy woke up, went downstairs and ate cereal. She needed to buy milk.

It's all about them pronouns; he, she, they etc

Tony_A20

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Re: Script For College Final Major Project! Help Please Word Count 855
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2014, 02:30:11 PM »
Hello Greyman,

  • Cut everything before "Charlie begins to leave house." It's garbage!
  • After Charly says, "I'll see you after class,"  give Poppy the same type and length of scene  as she leaves her residence (in a hurry, still getting dressed).
  • Cut all the direction, that the Director's job.
  • Next scene show Charlie and Poppy approaching sharp  corner of building. Pan from Charlie walking sedately, to include Poppy, in a hurry. Hold wide angle corner shot until collision (about 5 seconds).
  • Cut profanity. It adds nothing. Poppy's anger is excessive and unnatural. Mutual apologies are natural.
  • Charlie has no reason to care about Poppy. Poppy has no reason to care about Charlie. Give them a reason.

You have at most 20 sec of film. The direction for this whole opening scene is: Charlie and Poppy leave home and collide. Or, even shorter, Boy meets girl.

Next comes:
  • They fall in love.
  • They break up.
  • They reconcile and get married.

Try to think of something better—please.

Tony