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EricMLevy
10-14-2005, 05:57 AM
Eric & Nick invite you to read their new feature length screenplay, TRANSIT.

Three friends backpacking through Italy get caught up in a thriller, set it Italy.

http://www.ericmlevy.com/TRANSIT_FINAL.HTM

___________

Oh, and if you are an agent...say, from Hollywood, call us. Or email:

transitscreenplay@yahoo.com

EricMLevy
10-15-2005, 08:43 PM
hey, how about someone responds. this is a screenwriting forum afterall, and this is an entire screenplay.

jeez.

fwtep
10-16-2005, 01:59 AM
Reading it now. Here are a few things right off the top in scene 1:

1) The first sentence says that the guys "heave their enormous backpacks through the crowded Italian train car." First, I don't think you need "Italian" there, because that's not something we can know by seeing it. A minor point, but if you send this out to studios or agents they'll be pickier than that. More importantly, I think "heave" isn't the right word. Heave means to lift. Are they lifting the bags up? Sure they're holding them up as they carry them, bu the point I think you're trying to make is that they are trying to carry heavy bags through the aisle, not lifting them up to something. "Lugging" might be a better word; it implies weight and difficulty. I know you use that later though, so you should probably use the second instance. You also use "heave" incorrectly on page 3.

2) Second paragraph: "... packed full of Italians, none of which speak..." Should be "none of whom." The Italians are people, not things.

3) Second paragraph: How are you going to get across to the audience that Chris is uncomfortable in his own skin? Things like this may seem trivial and nitpicky, but if you have a lot of them they can be very bad, because you will know things that the audience can't, so, for example, you'll think the character of Chris is more interesting than he actually is to the audience. If you felt that bit of info was necessary to know, then you need to figure out a way to let the viewing audience know it.

4) Second paragraph: How do we know, at this point, what's in his bag? It should just say that he's lugging a large bag. We find out in the next sentence what's in the bag.

5) At the end of the first scene it says "Josh shoots the large gutted man a dirty look." "Large gutted" should be "large-gutted," so it doesn't read that there was a large man who was gutted. :)

6) Scene 6: What is "jukes"?

Side note: You really have a thing about weight, don't you? By page 3 we've already got a large-gutted man, and a man with a beach ball gut who's then referred to as the Fat Man (in caps like that).

I'll continue reading, but in the mean time, check your punctuation. Some of the mistakes have thrown me in reading.

Fred

EricMLevy
10-16-2005, 02:07 AM
Now THIS is what I'm talking about. I love that you're finding things I (we...this is written by two people) would not think of.

After reading your bullet list, I think it would be wise to hire an editor to tear through this script.

I hope you enjoy the story as it is now.

Oh, and:

v. juked, juk·ing, jukes
v. tr.To deceive or outmaneuver (a defending opponent) by a feint; fake. v. intr.To deceive or outmaneuver a defender by a feint.
n.A feint or fake.

It like pressing L2 or R2 in Madden :)

fwtep
10-16-2005, 07:25 AM
Re: Jukes
You want to be very wary of using unfamiliar words in scripts. Anything that brings the reader out of it is not good. You want them to be entranced by the script and not break the mood until they get to the final fadeout. Part of the reason is that they'll be impressed that you kept their attention, and part is because if you get taken out of it you have time to think and start noticing flaws and questioning things.

If it's a film you're making yourself, that's a little different; but if you plan on sending it to agents or production companies it's not good. Even if it's in dialog it's not good (put a more common word in, then if it goes into production you can put that other word back in if you want). And remember, contrary to what you and the media might think, not EVERYONE plays video games and is up on all of the current lingo and colloquialisms.

In the whole scheme of things this is just a minor point, but it's still something to keep in mind.

Fred

EricMLevy
10-16-2005, 08:44 AM
Did you like the story?

Juke is common as far as my partner and I are concerned. The NFL is one of the most common things in America, besides NASCAR. It's a football term. It's common.

But more...much more importantly: did you enjoy the story?

pconsidine
10-17-2005, 02:56 PM
Okay - here's the 10 page analysis (sorry, but that's sorta the professional way):

Your opening is a little too familiar to really hook me as a reader. "American college kids traveling through Europe and stumble across intrigue" is a pretty well-worn story (for example, American Werewolf in London did the same thing, but mixed it up with a horror angle). The thriller genre also tends to hint at what the drama is going to be about fairly early on (usually we get a little teaser of the big story before we meet our heroes). But I got up to page 30 before I got anything more thrilling that a Turkish dude, a credit card, and a break-in in their hotel room. I think you need a little more action to hook a reader enough to make him finish.

Just my 2˘.

EricMLevy
10-18-2005, 03:02 AM
Do you not feel as though the stakes are raised high enough by page 30? I encourage you to read on until the mid 40's where things really heat up.

_____________________________________________________

An American Werewolf in London was made in 1981. It's 2005 now-- close to 2006. That's riiiight around 25 years. I don't think our target market has seen that film. Also, that film is about 2 americans being attacked by werewolves. Yes, they are American, yes they are tourists. That's where the similarities end.

Oh, sorry to ruin the screenplay, but there aren't any werewolves.

As far as the thriller genre goes, we are aware that it breaks away from the traditional thriller in that there is a mix of genres. This has been brought to our attention by a director/producer at NFL Films that recently read the script. This does not look to be a deal-breaker in terms of the marketability of the screenplay, yet it's something we are aware of. In fact, subsequents drafts may have to specifically address that.

It is a thriller, make no bones about it.

-Eric & Nick

pconsidine
10-18-2005, 02:02 PM
Do you not feel as though the stakes are raised high enough by page 30? I encourage you to read on until the mid 40's where things really heat up.

It seems not. Not to put too fine a point on it, but you don't have 40+ pages to hook a reader. You have 10, tops. If there isn't enough in those first pages to make the reader think he's going to see something exciting or something new, he won't read farther.

Also, that film is about 2 americans being attacked by werewolves. Yes, they are American, yes they are tourists. That's where the similarities end.

I didn't bring that movie up to say that your script is a knock off or anything. I was just pointing out that the same opening has been used elsewhere and won't read as fresh as a different approach might.

Like I said - it's just my opinion. And my opinion was that is was pretty dull for the first 30 pages. You certainly don't have to do anything with that information.


Edited to add: Okay. I went back and read further to see if you were right about things kicking in around page 40 or so (which was actually page 50). You're right - things do get going about then. Which makes me ask one question - why doesn't that happen sooner?

Here's my analysis of what happens up to page 50: We meet three college kids on a backpacking tour of Europe. We meet a fat guy who appears to be a good guy. We meet a Turkish guy who appears to be a bad guy. We meet a pretty girl seems to be involved with the bad guy against her will. She and one of the college guys fall for each other. They meet a rich guy who lends them his swanky loft. The bad Turkish guy catches up to them and kills two of the three college kids. I don't really see any reason for that to take 50 pages.

I'm sure you didn't post your script here to get it taken apart, so I understand if you don't want to listen to what I'm saying. That's cool. Chances are you'll get as many positive comments as you get negative ones. That's the nature of the business.

Good luck.

dbates
10-18-2005, 04:10 PM
And I'll just add: Congrats on actually writing a feature-length script. It's a lot of hard work, but you guys managed it. . . Even if it isn't actually filmed, you've gained all this valuable experience. Keep at it!

EricMLevy
10-18-2005, 04:58 PM
We absolutely did post here to get it taken apart, but the only way to get anywhere is to challenge and discuss opinions.

Velk
10-18-2005, 05:32 PM
What would happen if the scene around pg. 50 where Dean finds his friends is moved to the very beginning of the story. You don't know who they are at the time—he doesn't say their names and in fact the cut only shows one of them... then flash back to your opening. Shorten their trip up to that point and continue showing the full scene. That will cause the story to pop a bit more at the opening without giving too much away.

I do find some of the dialog stilted and boring with too many references to 'jerk' (6 times) and other key phrases that really stuck out. The getting love/introduction to new characters also seemed really familiar and awkward.

pconsidine
10-18-2005, 07:42 PM
And I'll just add: Congrats on actually writing a feature-length script. It's a lot of hard work, but you guys managed it. . . Even if it isn't actually filmed, you've gained all this valuable experience. Keep at it!
Sorry. That should have been the first thing I said. Considering how many people never get that far, it's worthy of a high five at least.

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