Friday, March 29, 2013

The Wrong Block - Gina Thorwick


How Feedback Friday Works

Email Rob the first ten pages of your feature length screenplay (in pdf. format) along with a logline and title. 

Every Friday, one of our reviewers (or guests) posts one writer's work along with notes and a:

Rating

Trash It (Start over.)
Take Another Pass (You're onto something, but it needs more work.)
More Please (I'm hooked. What happens next?)
Somebody Shoot This!

Readers then comment on your work.

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THE WRONG BLOCK
Gina Thorwick

Logline:


After losing his son in an accidental gang shooting, a high-powered lawyer violently opposed to guns finds himself developing an unlikely bond with a cold blooded killer—a 15-year-old orphan—as they struggle together to rebuild their lives.

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These Screenplay Notes are brought to you by Script Doctor Eric
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Dear Gina,

First off, when you send over your script in a PDF, it's a good idea give it the title, so that when a reviewer is looking for it on his or computer they can search by the name of the script, or perhaps your name, and not "First Ten Pages - Rough Draft."  

The little things count.

Because, hypothetically, by the time the reviewer finds it, they might be a little more frustrated than they had been five minutes before!  

Raawwr!

In all seriousness, it's these little things that will really piss off an agent, manager, producer or their assistant.  Yes, they are petty little details, but some of these guys and gals have 10-20 scripts to read a day.  Yes, in A DAY.  So, five minutes looking for a script really WILL get them to think "Oh, the screenwriter couldn't take two seconds to title their ef-ing file?  Yeah, I'll be lenient..."

Trust me.  I've been there.  The coldness and pettiness sets in quickly after shitty script number six on a Thursday evening.


<Rant><Flashback>

Phew.  Alright, so let's see what you got for me...

THE LONG BLOCK


After losing his son in an accidental gang shooting, a high-powered lawyer violently opposed to guns finds himself developing an unlikely bond with a cold blooded killer—a 15-year-old orphan—as they struggle together to rebuild their lives.

Okay, so I've read the pages.  Solid start!  You've got an intriguing character in your orphan girl, and an immediate story with the killing of the lawyer's son.  Good work - it already feels like a movie!

As you'll see in my notes below, there are a number of screenwriting techniques that you really should pay a bit more attention to.  The script is OK, but feels like a first effort.  

First efforts are fine, by the way, but if you want to improve, I'd get my hands on as many scripts as you can - there are a TON online.  Read, read, read scripts, then write, write, WRITE them!  That's really the best way to improve.

Anyhow, back to the notes.

To be honest, it feels like you're enjoying writing the orphan much more than the lawyer.  So why not make it the orphan's story?  

If this were the story of the orphan, who befriends a lawyer, that could work, and be something a bit more original then yet ANOTHER story about a lawyer.

I do not want to see another movie about a lawyer.  But maybe that's just me.

Also, I didn't get the sense that the orphan was a "cold blooded killer."  Maybe she is, maybe she isn't - perhaps that can be a mystery of the script!  That way, the audience would be guessing...and they just might be following - and liking - a potential killer!  Creepy, compelling, edgy...like a movie should be.

Again, this is a good start, and I hope you continue writing this script and others.  

And READ scripts.  As many as you can!  

Seriously.

Logline Friday Rating: 
Take Another Pass (You're onto something, but it needs more work)

Your page by page notes are below, and can also be found at THIS LINK

Hope they help!  Best of luck on this script, and all the rest.

-Eric
www.scriptdoctoreric.com




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