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critique First 6 Pages of my script -Pulling Weeds

Does the set up create intrigue?
Is there anything that is off?
I care less about grammatical stuff
 

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OK I read first part of the script.
I could not find much in terms of intrigue, at least on first pages. Story is confusing and it is not clear how all these characters are interconnected, the impression is that some random things happen here and there, in that town. Without understanding where they come from, it is hard to feel any emotional connection to those empty names. Sorry if it was too harsh.
What was the story about?
 
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The story is about false appearances. The characters introduced so far are
James: he is pretending to be the manager of a fast food restaurant where he works as a cashier.

Marco: Monica's brother, dating Penelope. Their relationship is strained because she is going off to college and rejects him sexually.

Monica: hairdresser by day, cam girl by night. Sister to Marco. She is struggling to keep them afloat since their parents died.

Penelope: going to out of state university on scholarship, james dog Walker, marco girlfriend, in love with james. Doenst think marco is man enough.

Loraine: shes interested in her young handsome neighbor, james, has a distant or completely lost relationship to her son. She has been battling with james over the maintenance of his house.


I wanted to set up the characters in the first 5 pages or so as having shown that they are apart of eachothers lives somehow.

The next set of pages I wrote include the following
* james is finally cut off from his parents and fired from work after the real manager cat hes him in the act.
* the regional celebrity of a self help line comes to the hair dresser shop where monica works.
* Penelope and marco break up after she refuses to have sex with him and says that he doenst have a future.

The story is influenced by magnolia and American beauty. There are intertwining stories.
 
I think that you should summarize your story in 1 page before writing it in screenplay format. That would really help you to crystallize what you want to present.

"The story is influenced by magnolia and American beauty. There are intertwining stories." - but I could not find what was the story itself. You said it is about false appearance - but your answer just describes some characters, their actions and that's it.

It is not a story, at least now, and the planned continuation is nothing but some random happenings again (someone came, someone broke with someone). One may ask so what? What is so important that someone pretends to be a a manager of a fast food cafe? To be honest, that position itself is not that important and pretty much close to cashier so what the use of pretending to be only one level higher? What are things that make him to pretend to be one he is not? And in this small town, would not everyone know about everyone?
What is important that someone refused sex with someone? How it is linked with false claims? Right now, these scenes are not connected by an arch line and without it, they are just random happenings.
 
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I have an outline I just didn't want send everything in because it's a feature and I like to be critiqued in chunks.

My outline is about 6 pages approx 40 scenes.

I know its confusing since I havent given much, I'll send in more pages of the script as I go to this thread
 
I have an outline I just didn't want send everything in because it's a feature and I like to be critiqued in chunks.

My outline is about 6 pages approx 40 scenes.

I know its confusing since I havent given much, I'll send in more pages of the script as I go to this thread
Hey, you don't have to send more pages. But either it is hard to have impression based on few scenes as well. It is good that you have that condensed outline. Good luck! For a feature movie with 60-80 scenes 2-3 page outline might be enough.
 
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My feature screenplay outlines are generally between 15 and 17 pages, so it's a matter of personal preference.
Absolutely. When I was producing TV episode screenplays, typically consisting of 45 minutes of footage or about 30 scenes, I would first write 1 page treatment divided into 3 parts: beginning of the episode, middle part and ending of the episode. This allows very clear understanding of a story in the episode. From that I would develop the larger outline of 2-3 pages, which covers all action in all scenes, and then move to full script. 15 page outline for 90 minute would be probably on long side for me personally, but it is only my experience. Generally, very condensed outline is good for understanding the overall flow of story (in my opinion). But once you include dialog in the outline, yes it may become quite long.
 
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I'm not an expert like many of the guys on here but for what its worth, here is my feedback - You mention "body" twice in the first sentence, delete one of the references. Your descriptions are trying to be evocative but I would suggest you say more with less. Keep it concise. Also, you cannot describe things the audience cannot see, an example is "unaware that the bus has already turned the corner". To describe this I would describe the action first, then the result. for example: the bus departs around the corner, the school girl arrives at the bus stop, looking around.
On other thing I notices is the use of "CONTINUOUS" in the slugline after the FRONT YARD scene. It cannot be considered "continuous" when James is in the the yard and in the next scene he is sat inside, it is a new scene. CONTINUOUS implies the action moves from one location to the next in the same beat.
Overall, I think the script gets better as it goes on, it's hard to judge without the context of the full story, but it's certainly not bad. I like some of the casual dialogue, and it seems like the story is setting up for something better. Keep going with it, would like to hear the next stage of the story!
 
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