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critique WORK IN PROGRESS scripts

There are also couple of things i would like to add: i'm on page 25, it means that i just spent 25 minutes in front of the screen watching the film you wrote, and there is nothing really happening. Normally, i would expect to be introduced to main character and understand character's desires and goals. And then i looked at number of pages in your script. Is it 243 pages? It's like a four hours long film. The best advice i can give you is to write a really short synopsis, like one-two pages, and tell us a whole story using that two pages. Then you write a script using core elements of your story from the synopsis you wrote and keep your script up to 90-100 pages.
 

directorik

IndieTalk's Resident Guru
Well, i' ve just read ten pages of "life as a screenplay". And all ten pages is one scene. There is a dialogue for the first three pages with nothing going on and there is no obvious purpose of that dialogue. Then it's another seven pages of a dialogue. It's ten minutes of just talking. Usually, maximum scene length is around two-three minutes. And there is a reason for that - no one is going to watch ten minutes of people talking. It's just not interesting. Sorry, mate. You should aim for two minutes scenes and try to give us as much information as possible through dialogues.
This "two minute scenes" statement is unworkable. Not every screenplay needs to follow
that notion. There are many great films that use long sequences of dialogue. Each project
is as unique as the writer.

I'm sure you could name a dozen screenplays that didn't follow this maximum scene length
of around two-three minutes. I know I could. The reality is, many people will watch ten minutes
people talking. Your statement that "no one" would is false.

What clark doesn't like, and the reason he has left indietalk, are comments like that. If the
dialogue is excellent and moves an interesting story people will watch and enjoy it. If
nothing is going in his pages of dialogue that is a valid comment. Suggesting that usually
scene length is two-three minutes isn't.

Granted, I'm not going to read it because clark has made it clear he will not return to get
any help from us.
 
And i'm not saying that scene with dialogues can't go over three minutes, sure it can. But there should be purpose for that, some kind of conflict, it should be intriguing. Not just two people standing and telling each other their lives.

Still want to see some examples )
 
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I have a personal problem with writing screenplays lol 😂. See I was an author a while back so the way i make my stories and lines is i just write down the story, then I make a list of each scene and what dialogue each scene has. When filming comes around I have a sheet of paper for that scene with just normal lines of what to say. It’s far easier, simple for me to do it that way and so the actors can just look at it and say it. I don’t really write a full on professional styled screenplay. I just stay simple and easy. Kinda lazy I know lol. But it allows me more time to focus on story, plot, production design etc.
I just have a laid back style of directing lol. If anyone here makes another film you should try it that way lol. Or if your writing a films story. Just do it a simple way.
 
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indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
That's a selfish act. Let me explain. You are only thinking of yourself with that process and not the cast and crew. There's a screenplay format for a reason, and that reason is not only the director. It's the DP, the prop department, wardrobe, the actors, etc. Your film should run like a well oiled machine. Having a proper screenplay/shooting script is essential. If you are still at the "YouTube with friends" stage, fine, but you've been posting about a "real" feature that you want to be bigger than Lord of the Rings, or something like that. You should start learning now!
 
That's a selfish act. Let me explain. You are only thinking of yourself with that process and not the cast and crew. There's a screenplay format for a reason, and that reason is not only the director. It's the DP, the prop department, wardrobe, the actors, etc. Your film should run like a well oiled machine. Having a proper screenplay/shooting script is essential. If you are still at the "YouTube with friends" stage, fine, but you've been posting about a "real" feature that you want to be bigger than Lord of the Rings, or something like that. You should start learning now!

I prefer to make my own styles of “screenplays” that are simple, easier to read and more effective. Generally I’m involved in every aspect of my films. Just because i don’t have the “standard” format of scripting and screenplays as others doesn’t mean my films are “youtube with friends” stage. Or don’t run like a smooth machine. I try thinking outside the box with every single aspect of film. From the way my scenes are planned, script flow and film shooting. To make the process easier, more effective and all. I often get criticized that my films are made too differently and the process is way off. I just like exploring new territories if you get what I mean. “Proper way to do it” is only a point of view that everyone has from their own experiences. There are only ways, no proper.
I don’t think I could make a feature bigger than lord of the rings, thats suicide. But I definetely can try to re-create it’s feel with new stories and new ways of production.
I reckon everyone who hasn’t already should at some stage try going way off the general line of production. Try new ways to make a film. Make your own special scripts that don’t stay to the usual run of the mill formula. Try new ways to handle budgets. Thats what im aiming to do. For example for my next film I’m trying to find ways to make massive set piece battles, castle seiges, magical battles with no CGI, only hard made sets and time and imagination. Low budget and all.
To do the impossible.
Sticking to run of the mill production processes should only be for when we all start out.
Wow sorry for saying so much lol. Kinda went off topic from this threads conversation.
I might make another thread on this topic soon though, about how the film industry is generally stagnating.
 
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indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
Yeah yeah yeah, too late you already said it's because you are lazy. :P

If you want to work in the industry or ever submit a screenplay you will need to know proper format. It's not only the blueprint, it's the language everyone knows how to speak and already understands.
 
Yeah yeah yeah, too late you already said it's because you are lazy. :P

If you want to work in the industry or ever submit a screenplay you will need to know proper format. It's not only the blueprint, it's the language everyone knows how to speak and already understands.

to be fair. Doing what everyone always does. The “blueprint” and standard is the lazy way. No offense 😂. I’m not sure if I’ll be submitting screenplays more like making them into films myself.
you don’t have to stick to the standard “way” to work in the industry. Maybe for other films, but for your own. There is free reign.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
:lol:
All the people on here learning proper formatting and asking for help... you are lazy! You heard it here!
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
to be fair. Doing what everyone always does. The “blueprint” and standard is the lazy way. No offense 😂. I’m not sure if I’ll be submitting screenplays more like making them into films myself.
you don’t have to stick to the standard “way” to work in the industry. Maybe for other films, but for your own. There is free reign.

There is nothing wrong with writing your way if you are the one creating the film, but if you try to submit a screenplay to the industry without the industry standard, it will immediately be thrown into the garbage before they even see how great the story is.
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
Well, i would like some examples of long dialogue sequence, maybe i'm missing something.


You aren't wrong about boring dialogue, but as you also said, it depends on what they are talking about and whether it is interesting enough. You can up the watch-ability by adding on screen action too.
 
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You aren't wrong about boring dialogue, but as you also said, it depends on what they are talking about and whether it is interesting enough. You can up the watch-ability by adding on screen action too.
Love this film. Great scene, but actually there two dialogue scenes in that one. There is boss with his note book trying to remember girl's name and tarantino with madonna and dicks, dicks, dicks - it's a set up for the first conflict. When harvey keitel grabs the bosse's notebook that is beginning of scene one. "Give me notebook back. No, im tired of you toby, moby" first conflict. When conflict resolved "you get your notebook, when we leave restaurant" that is the end of scene one. Now there is a set up for a new conflict - boss stands "tip the waitress, i'll pay for your coffe". He leaves. Second scene begins. Everyone tip. Steve buschemi "i don't tip". Bam, new conflict. It resolves when boss comes back and says "tip, i payed for your breakfast". He tips. End of scene two. You see, there are two dialogues scenes in there and i bet both of them around three minutes.
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
Love this film. Great scene, but actually there two dialogue scenes in that one. There is boss with his note book trying to remember girl's name and tarantino with madonna and dicks, dicks, dicks - it's a set up for the first conflict. When harvey keitel grabs the bosse's notebook that is beginning of scene one. "Give me notebook back. No, im tired of you toby, moby" first conflict. When conflict resolved "you get your notebook, when we leave restaurant" that is the end of scene one. Now there is a set up for a new conflict - boss stands "tip the waitress, i'll pay for your coffe". He leaves. Second scene begins. Everyone tip. Steve buschemi "i don't tip". Bam, new conflict. It resolves when boss comes back and says "tip, i payed for your breakfast". He tips. End of scene two. You see, there are two dialogues scenes in there and i bet both of them around three minutes.

Isn't written as two dialogue scenes... You might be over analyzing.


And the next "scene" is on page 11, which from industry standard is 11 minutes in.
 
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indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
They are all at the table like any group of people. All present but some speak, some listen, some talk to certain people. One scene.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
However you are wrapped up in the semantics of it... your point is it can work with the right dialogue. Tarantino is a dialogue king, so yeah, he figured it out. You can too. ;)
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
I don't think so, it's a basic structure. It's like inner montage. There are two different scenes wrapped in one.

This is something I've had to accept myself... It's cool to theorize your own opinions about scenes... But you are making it sound like you wrote the script (which we all know isn't true).

We as filmmakers can argue for days about these things.... But in the end, the script is the script, it is written a certain way to convey what the WRITER wants to convey. Anything we say or analyze afterward is not going to be anything like what the original writer intended.

How do you really know Tarantino is writing two dialogue scenes? Do you really? Or is that what YOU take from it? And even further, how can you say that was the intention to split the dialogue using a 2-3 minute rule? That doesn't apply to writers, and I highly doubt that any script writer is thinking "I better cut the scene 3 pages in, because it will bore people".

That seems to apply more to Cinematography, but that is my thought... Not a hard fact.

Its the monkey chain lesson we all did in middle school. There is no right answer, there is only the original intended piece, and then everyone's opinions after the piece is released.

That said, for the original post, everyone is just trying to help OP improve the story. Its going to die before it is born because it isn't exciting enough. It needs some spice and some Act/Plot messaging. The beginning needs cut a lot, the conflict needs introduced earlier, etc. etc.

My scripts suffered from this too. Heck, my last short film is a slog to most people. They can't even get through the first 5 minutes! It sucks to hear, it hurts my heart, especially after working so hard on that film!

But at the same time, I can use that information to make the next film just a little better.
 

indietalk

IndieTalk Founder
Staff Member
Admin
However in saying yeah it worked because it was two "dialogue scenes," means, he admits it worked! ;)
 
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