Completely crazy, yet sophisticated comedy hits many right notes with the appropriate balance of witty dialogue and terse descriptions. Picture a 1950's Ealing comedy fused with the contemporary, edgy flavor of say, a The Full Monty -- and you have something approximating The Biggest Collect of All.
You clearly know your subject well and have invested a great deal of thought into these characters. Does it have an "inciting incident?" Probably not. Not really. But who cares? Did Five Easy Pieces have an inciting incident? Ten different people will give you ten different answers. So much for conventional screenplay methodology.
Basically, this is an ensemble piece about a hapless group of deadbeat dads, walking a precarious tightrope over a canyon of martial troubles, shattered dreams, failing health, alcoholism, ubiquitous support groups, and gambling addictions. And somehow, it's often very funny, thanks to a gallery of colorful characters Damon Runyon would be proud of. It was a fast-paced read.
I will admit, though, I am none too familiar with all the racetrack vernacular you liberally sprinkle throughout this script, and for me, it was, admittedly, difficult to follow at times. And may be for others. For what it's worth. I had to back up and re-read several passages. But that's just me.
Sometimes you forget to CAP your character introductions. All character introductions should be in CAPS.
You have a lot of characters to introduce in your first 6 pages and it was a bit overwhelming, trying to visualize and digest one introduction right after the other without a lot of dialogue to establish their voices before being shuttled to the next character. This leads to a plethora of the "who's who" category of confusion. I will say, it gets easier as the characters unfold during the first act at the racetrack. Ironguts and Rory definitely have their own voices!
Pg. 7 - Should "a thousand the win" be "a thousand TO win?"
The obvious thing to say would be you "have too many lines of description." Although, all description could usually use some editing, just breaking up the paragraphs with five lines of more into smaller paragraphs should suffice.
Overall, I think you have a solid character-driven story here and I like that you ended it on a poignant note. The characters deserved it.
The best of luck with your script.
Review of: The Biggest Collect of All
reviewed by MiltonDaggett on 05/07/2011
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