story I CHANGED MY STORY IDEA, NOW I NEED ADVICE ON THIS NEW ONE

DNAFILMZ

Member
Hi, i am working on a story for a short film competition, it must be under 3 minutes, i have the idea of what i want to do but i need help expanding on it and creating a good script and storyline. The story is about a guy 16-22 years old who lives with his parents and two younger siblings, he's a "wannabe" gang member and his parents advise him against it and tell him he could bring that to the house, he doesnt care/believes them, until one day he comes back home to find all of his family shot dead and tortured by the rival gang.}

I decided to change my story to something simpler, However, I was wondering if anyone knows how i can get psychology help to develop a character who's mentally unstable in a violent kind of way, He or she is teased and picked on a lot, not really in a bad bad kind of way, but still lightly hurtful, however he or she being mentally unstable, {almost a normal human but on the verge of going insane like joker from the dark knight} he or she goes violent and murders his or her friends. The story has a different plot line, but that is the general rundown of this character, I just want it to be scientifically as accurate as possible, and what medications might this character be taking and what mental illness this character has
 
Last edited:

mlesemann

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
I think it's do-able if you cut any preamble and go straight into him fighting with the parents about the gang, they don't understand, etc.
He joins anyway, he loves the gang as family - again, this has to be very brief.
He pledges loyalty to gang x, and undying opposition to gang y.
And then he comes home to find gang y killed his family.

So what does he do? That's the big question, I think.
Is he consumed by guilt and kills himself?
Goes after the rival gang and goes down in a blaze of glory?
Or simply buries his sorrows in the comradeship of gang x, which now really IS his only family?

There's no real room for character development but it's possible, I think.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
You don't need to expand this - it's too complex as it is.

Think of a 3 minute movie as a joke - not that it must be funny, just the structure. 30 seconds to set everything up and good punch line/ending.

So the end is he opens the door and sees his entire family dead? Do you want to show the killing and torture? What is it you want to tell the audience?
 
Keep in mind that it is EXTREMELY unusual for someone who lives with both parents to become involved in the gang scene. That may stretch the credibility of your narrative. Gangs tend to become a substitute for family, especially a father figure. Also, the influence of the gang lifestyle tends to start much earlier, in the tweens.

I might make him much younger (12/13) and then start with the wake, the people there bemoaning what happened to his family, as your set-up. That would lead into "Does he join a rival gang as a way to reap vengeance" and/or the gang becoming a substitute for family.
 

DNAFILMZ

Member
Keep in mind that it is EXTREMELY unusual for someone who lives with both parents to become involved in the gang scene. That may stretch the credibility of your narrative. Gangs tend to become a substitute for family, especially a father figure. Also, the influence of the gang lifestyle tends to start much earlier, in the tweens.

I might make him much younger (12/13) and then start with the wake, the people there bemoaning what happened to his family, as your set-up. That would lead into "Does he join a rival gang as a way to reap vengeance" and/or the gang becoming a substitute for family.
Yeah that's true, but me having come from public schools in Fort Worth, many kids from middle to high school try to join "gangs" trying to fit in no matter what their home situation is, but yeah making him younger is actually a good idea. Maybe his parents are in the verge of divorce. I'm still writing and brainstorming the idea
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff member
Admin
How about something like at home he enjoys silly stuff with his family like jokes and noogies but some of his gang buddies stop by and he starts acting tough in front of his fam. They help themselves to food on the table and the fridge, they take some sodas, bagged chips, or whatever and leave. The parents warn him. He ignores. He sneaks out and does street stuff with the gang but he tells them not to take stuff from his house anymore. They act like they agree with him, being sarcastic. The next day he returns home from school and the place is tossed, and parents missing. On the table are the empty items taken previously (chip bag, 2 liter)... YOU decide what happens from here.... this was just a brainstorm! ;)
 
That's a LOT for 3 minutes. You need something way simpler.
My thoughts exactly.

As for your idea about mental illness causing someone to get violent, I happen to be very familiar with bipolar disorder (family members). Sadly, especially when combined with alcohol addiction (which it often is), a person can become very violent when having a manic episode. They can have paranoid delusions and delusions of grandeur.

My two cents on this though -- please don't make this movie without having done your proper research. There are far too many movies that vilify and/or make fun of the mentally ill, which is basically like kicking someone when they're down. If you can do your research and treat the subject with respect though, the movie could actually help end the stigma associated with mental illness. Don't get me wrong -- I'm totally gonna watch "Joker" but I'm expecting it to be more of a pop-culture cash-grab with no realistic reflection of mental illness in real life (hopefully I'll be wrong about that). The most accurate depiction of mental illness I've ever seen is in "The Soloist", starring Jamie Foxx and RDJ, and not only was it accurate, it also treats it's subjects with respect. There's probably a memoir out there somewhere that would be a good start for you to start figuring out what it's like for someone to live with this mental illness. And one more idea -- maybe it might be smart to tell the story primarily from the perspective of family members who are afflicted by their relatives mental illness and how heartbreaking it can be to want to help someone you love but have no way of doing that.

Regardless of what you decide, I wish you the best. :)
 

Top