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HOW IT RATES
A former champion in the absurd sport of horseshoes fights to defeat the rival who stole his fame and his girl.
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Reviews of The Leaner 20
by T Martin on 08/04/2011THE GOOD I really liked the idea of a sports movie focusing on horseshoes. I liked the small town vibe of the project. The piece has a good sense of setting and could be utilized even more...more on that later. Like the idea of serious gambling on horseshoes. I like the FLASHBACK stuff. Technical writing ability is pretty tight, so script was a breeze to read for the... THE GOOD
I really liked the idea of a sports movie focusing on horseshoes.
I liked the small town vibe of the project. The piece has a good sense of setting and could be utilized even more...more on that later.
Like the idea of serious gambling on horseshoes.
I like the FLASHBACK stuff.
Technical writing ability is pretty tight, so script was a breeze to read for the most part.
So when I started reading, I thought this was going to be a take on the comedy sports genre ala DODGEBALL and BALLS OF FURY. As I kept reading it seemed as if the writer was more interested in exploring the pathos of the characters and striking a chord with the reader in the reality of the situation ala TIN CUP or ELECTION.
Now I don't know which direction you should go. Personally I would like to see the reality explored. Ditch the State Finals, commentators..etc. Keep it a small town tournament. One that they gamble on and people have so much pride that they can lose much more then they can afford. I would make it so LANCE basically ruins SEAMUS' dad in the beginning which leads to the father's death and sets up Seamus' quest to beat him. I would really show this small town and the lack of good women and boredom and show that the annual game is a big source of pride.
OK, but maybe you want to go the route of a big studio comedy ala. DODGEBALL...your choice. In that case, you have to up the jokes. I mean there has to be a laugh on every page. Read DODGEBALL, granted a lot of the humor falls flat (pirate character i'm looking at you) but man, that script is trying to make you laugh on every page...same with a lot of the great broad comedies including AIRPLANE and SOMETHING ABOUT MARY.
Either way I think it's important to decide on the tone you want to pursue. As is, it sits in the middle with some really broad humor (Mrs Jenkins) and some serious character work, but the piece never gives enough of either to quite work.
Some more specific notes:
Dialogue especially between Seamus and the ladies is very melodramatic and on the nose.
Angie was too empty to make me care if Seamus gets her back. I know it's your point that in the end he doesn't want her, but still we have to see something in her to even follow Seamus in his quest. If you give her some good characteristics it makes her more human and expands upon Seamus' dilemma a bit more. Once she starts hanging with Lance, it's obvious as to where it's going. Maybe the guys even secretly bet her...a bit crass, but I could imagine a group of small towner's doing something like that.
Like I said script is technically well written so it was a fluid read, but there were a couple of things.
Way too many characters to keep track of in the beginning. If someone isn't that important don't give them a formal name, just say FAT HORSESHOE GUY...CLERK...etc. Every time you give someone a name I think they are important so I put them in my mind and it distracts from Seamus' story.
You use a lot of adverbs: page 28 "suddenly storms out" 29 aggressively 32 angrily, etc. when you don't need to. Just stick to good verbs, it's better writing.
Good luck with the project. You're trying to make people laugh and that's a very admirable thing. Also this script really made me jones for a good game of horseshoes. read
by ozvalue on 03/05/2011Romance I'm no expert in any of this but I try to give helpful advice. Just don't take my word for anything. No title page? The normal format for film scripts has a title page previous to first page of the script. While in this case where we aren't meant to put in our addresses etc, so it doesn't have much use, it would appear to me to be a format violation not to have... Romance
I'm no expert in any of this but I try to give helpful advice. Just don't take my word for anything.
No title page?
The normal format for film scripts has a title page previous to first page of the script. While in this case where we aren't meant to put in our addresses etc, so it doesn't have much use, it would appear to me to be a format violation not to have the title page.
Stop being a such pansy. I'll be
waiting right here when you come
back with that trophy."
First sentence should be
'Stop being such a pansy.'
"Shamus’ sister, SHELLY (20), cute and toned, a female-looking
version of Shamus, scampers over."
Shouldn't that be "Shamus's sister".
"MOUSE STACHE (60), little and bald, adjusts his awful
And what is wrong with handlebar mustaches?
I'm trying to grow one!
Me and Mack are newlyweds."
On the nose exposition. Obviously for the audience to know the situation.
I think this line needs rewording to something a bit more subtle.
I’m back on the horse. Meet me at
Strange Lands in two hours."
Our protagonist accepts the challenge on page 27.
This seems a bit late as per normal structure of a story.
They say Barry Sanders retired in
his prime. Same for Michael Jordan.
Well...the first time at least. In
our world, those sports ain’t shit.
Them players, less then shit. We
live and die in the pits. And look
what I dug up. Found me a goddamned
ghost. It’s --"
It's a bit long winded. Suggest you shorten.
"The shoe nails a TALL MAN smack between the eyes. Drops him."
"Barton, fresh, huge welt under his eye, rapidly shakes Shamus’ hand.
So great. So great to have you.
Come back again, Champ.
Maybe bring some ice next time."
Is the TALL MAN and Barton meant to be the same man?
Otherwise I don't understand the huge Welt reference.
In that case, why not just state that it was Barton rather than saying TALL MAN?
You don’t have the brains to beat
me anymore. Got Angie to prove it."
I don't understand the reference to Angie here. Seems out of place for Ron to be mentioning
Angie since Lance now seems to have Angie. I think this RON and the next RON are meant to be LANCE
You do fully realize that’s my
mother, don’t you?"
This comment just seems too late in the relationship to be stated here. By this state in their relationship I would have expected no more than a head shake as a response to 'she's a little tuckered out'.
"Shamus emerges from the hallway as Barbara sews oversized
socks. Mack watches JUDGE JUDY, yanks away on beef jerky."
If I understand the last term correctly then I think that it is way over the top and not appropriate. While you have so far set Mac up as being oversexed etc, you have also set him up as a good step father and husband and jerking off in the living room with his wife and step son still there is just not right in this context... Or did you actually mean real beef jerky? Sorry, here in Australia, almost nobody eats beef jerky at home.
Note: I had a gap of several weeks between when I read the first 70 pages and when I read the rest.
pedestrian laughs in his direction, halts at a red light."
This doesn't read right or isn't understandable.
"Walks FORWARD through doorway."
Why is FORWARD capitalised?
"I just want to let you know, I’d
did this whole Lance thing for us."
Maybe that should be
'I just want to let you know, I
did this whole Lance thing for us.'
You have "A SNEAKER" in capitals twice
"She holds Shamus’ guitar."
Shouldn't that be Shamus's guitar
I don't like the ending or near ending where Shamus walks off from the competition without finishing the competition. He is meant to be the hero and he is deserting his friends, his family and the competition audience who are all rooting for him. I think that you are trying to change the ending so that it is not so predictable and that is good but this is not the way to do it. We want to like or empathise with the protaganist, particularly near the end and we wont like or empathise with him when he does this. You need to make him win the contest then find some other way for him to pass Angie to Lance.
I did like it when Lance decided to be the hero near the end. That was a surprise. It was also a bit of surprise for Ron and Carl to get together romantically. Other than that the script was a bit predictable. I suppose that was more due to the fact that it was a romance and romance stories tend to be.
Good luck with it.
by Hankster266 on 02/13/2011I remember reading your script, although the title threw me. I finally found you as “Open Pit”. I did not go back to re-read the earlier version, but I do like the changes you’ve made in this version. I am still a little concerned when Shamus gives up everything when his father dies. He knew Dick was very ill when he left the hospital, so I was surprised when he was so... I remember reading your script, although the title threw me. I finally found you as “Open Pit”. I did not go back to re-read the earlier version, but I do like the changes you’ve made in this version.
I am still a little concerned when Shamus gives up everything when his father dies. He knew Dick was very ill when he left the hospital, so I was surprised when he was so devastated when he comes back and his father is dead. Although I did like the little bit of misdirection you had on page 10. I was anticipating something else, so when his final act was to have his toenails painted made me chuckle.
The changes of the Carl and Ron’s characters were surprising. They both fill the character of side kick, so the “rules” about them are a little more lacks, as opposed to heros. They seemed a little slap-stick, but then Lance’s side-kicks were equally slap-stick, Ding Dong and Butt Ugly. I think you changed their names from the earlier version too. I’m not sure their activities added to the story, but that’s just me.
I did like the Shamus and Ever interaction. Their looking for his “lost” dog was a hoot. I especially liked the line when Shamus goes to Ever’s house and finds her and Ripped Guy appear at the door, and she says “You’ll need a leash next time.” Doesn’t sound like much here, but in context it was a hoot.
Finally I’d like to say I liked the ending. For Shamus to leave the pit without throwing the last shoe didn’t give Lance the clean victory or defeat that Lance needed. Lance needed that clean win to recover or loss to give himself a place to rebuild. So without that last shoe being thrown he was lost. And by not throwing that last shoe, Shamus proved everything he’d gained. That was a scene well done.
This was a nice re-write on your script. You had to do what most writers hate to do, cut out good scenes. I remember a scene where Lance attacks Shamus outside of the bar, but rather then tricking him with the horse shoe throw, as in this version, you had to cut out where Lance tried to break his throwing hand. Tough call to leave that scene out, but I think the script is better for the new scene.
by Mike Souder on 02/09/2011First, this was a surprisingly good story. I almost removed the assignment because “romcom” and “horseshoes” didn’t exactly blow my skirt up. But I figured what the hell, I need to broaden my horizons, and, it turns out, I liked it. It had all the usual beats, so I knew how it would end (except for one thing), but I think that’s typical of the genre, so I don’t know if this... First, this was a surprisingly good story. I almost removed the assignment because “romcom” and “horseshoes” didn’t exactly blow my skirt up. But I figured what the hell, I need to broaden my horizons, and, it turns out, I liked it. It had all the usual beats, so I knew how it would end (except for one thing), but I think that’s typical of the genre, so I don’t know if this is a problem to be fixed.
The only big problem I see is the dialog. A lot of times you leave out the subject of the sentence in the dialog. This would be okay if one, maybe two characters did it, but when they all do it, it gets very unnatural and sounds horrible to my mind’s ear. Sometimes it makes sense, but plenty of times it is confusing. If I was watching an actor deliver the line, there’d be no confusion, but since this is a spec, I think you need to clear things up. Because of this problem, all the characters started sounding the same to me… well, now that I think about it, really just Shamus, Shelly, and Ever.
One thing that was very unpredictable was Carl and Ron (maybe) being gay in the end. If you set this up at all in the beginning, I just plain missed it. It seemed so out of place, I thought you had some dialog mixed up between the characters (see notes below). It’s fine that they end up like this, but I was sure Shelly would end up with Carl after their first interaction. This isn’t the case, so I was wondering, what’s the point of Shelly’s character other than her OC behaviors for comic relief. Shelly just kinda feels tacked on there to me.
You made a big deal about a DVD near the beginning. Are they watching it on pg83? If so, you should point it out. If not, what happened to it?
Anyway, thanks for the well formatted, almost typo-free read. My running notes are below.
Pg17-18. Didn’t really understand what was going on in the break up scene. Seemed like half the time they were talking past one another, the other half on the nose.
Pg21. Firing is kinda abrupt.
Pg30. I’ve noticed a couple of times you leave out words from the dialog like “Just wish you had more kids.” Does Shamus wish Dick had more kids or does Shamus think Dick wishes he had more kids? I think you do this to make the dialog flow better, but I think it’s better to be clear and let the actors decide what words to leave out. It’s happening again and again and again.
Pg48. You are in need of a few the-s.
Pg54. You should definitely have Ever hear about Angie in the scene with Lance outside the bar.
Pg64. All you characters sound the same when all of them leave out words in their dialog.
Pg80. Instead of having them go camping, have Shamus go to Ever to try to work things out. Just when he’s about to decide to be with her, he gets a call about Kranski’s heart attack. I’m very anti-camping since the last Harry Potter.
Pg83. “Ignores pedestrian laughs in his face”
Pg88. “I’d did this whole Lance thing”
Pg91. Shelly and Carl’s dialog switched? I guess not. I must’ve missed any clues you left about Carl being gay. read
by William Mandell on 02/02/2011CONCEPT: I don’t know anything about playing horseshoes. I certainly didn’t have the slightest realization that there were serious competitions for the game. So that being said, the concept seems original and fresh to me. Also, I have to comment that it’s got great, high concept title. STORY: You have this story listed as a comedy, but it feels more like a comedy/drama... CONCEPT:
I don’t know anything about playing horseshoes. I certainly didn’t have the slightest realization that there were serious competitions for the game. So that being said, the concept seems original and fresh to me. Also, I have to comment that it’s got great, high concept title.
You have this story listed as a comedy, but it feels more like a comedy/drama. It does have funny moments, but not on a consistent basis. However, it did prove to have other things to offer. Basically you’re not reinventing the wheel here. All of the ingredients to a typical romantic comedy are present. The protagonist has a goal that drives him through the story, we know what he wants, or at least what he thinks he wants.
As the story opens up, it immediately had decidedly more dramatic scenes. The plot line with Shamus’s father dying obviously set up Shamus with a sense of loss and made him sympathetic.
I strongly disliked Angie, but by the end of the story I think that I was supposed to. The fact of the matter is, I really felt like I could identify with Shamus on a personal level. That’s probably what makes this a strong piece of work more than anything. That feeling of having a huge loss or hole in your life. Then the people closest to you (Angie) jump ship as soon as the chips are down. Probably my aversion to Angie came from a personal experience, but fact that this made a connection like that to me on a personal level shows the strength of this piece.
Ever was well played. Very likeable personality. You certainly set her up nicely as the rival love interest that Shamus should really be pursuing and you’re face palming that he isn’t seeing it. Though it’s slightly telegraphed, you make a fair attempt at masking it.
The payoff is what stood out most in this spec. It was well played and satisfying. I really liked the scene of Angie’s renewed interest in Shamus now that he is back to form. But she comes to discover that “She missed the boat”. Well played, all parties seemed to get what they deserved.
For the most part the characterization was strong. Specifically when it comes to character descriptions. There were a few examples that really stood out to me. As far as the characters “popping” some of the characters did, and some didn’t. Shamus, Ever, Angie and Lance were the ones who were the stand outs to me. The others seemed to blend together.
I also felt that maybe you have too many characters in the story. You may consider reviewing the roles of certain characters to the overall story and seeing if you can cut anything. I specifically felt like this towards the beginning of the story. Though with creative character names, this reduced the problem. However, I would still advise to reduce the character count wherever possible. In this piece and as general advice.
As far as character arc, this was nicely executed with Shamus. He goes through a lot of transition through the story. The loss of his father, his depression, Angie leaving and his rise back to form. Then finally his self discovery that he needs to be his own man and follow his own dreams. Very nicely executed.
I don’t feel like there is a very strong star appeal on the basis of the characters, however, I think the originality of the concept and the execution of the script could potentially catch the interest of actors who happen to read the script. Of course, a screenplay like this would likely only appeal to actors who are staples to the romantic comedy genre.
Presentation was very well polished. My only complaint in regards to structure is the fact that there didn’t seem to be an inciting incident that kicks the second act. Perhaps I missed it, but I feel that this is something that is lacking in this draft.
Dialog was very strong in this spec. I can’t really think of any time that I felt something was out of place. There were some very nice moments. Specifically something that comes to mind was the subtext of the conversation between Shamus and Ever regarding the “dog” ie: Angie.
It seemed to me that this spec had a reoccurring theme of self discovery. Again, nicely executed.
Being a low budget film and the fact that this piece doesn’t have any of the typical strikes against it (period piece, war film, etc…) it seems that it could have a good possibility of being picked up as an independent.
I must say that this was a well written and well polished screenplay. Romantic comedies are not within my typical tastes. However, your execution of what Shamus was going through was something that I could really connect with. If a screenwriter is able to do this, that certainly puts you ahead of the curve. Well done.
5: Mouse Stache, Beat Box and Butt Ugly, nice names.
6: Just an impression, I feel like a lot of characters are being introduced, perhaps too quickly, it’s a little hard to keep track. The funny names for the minor characters help out with this though.
7: Another impression, so far this is feeling more like a drama than a comedy.
8: Okay, that’s morbidly humorous.
14: I like this action description.
Ron lurches back like a
vampire who entered sunlight.
16: Another great description
Subtle lighting, stuffed giraffes, and an abundance of fluffy
pillows whisper, “Woman in charge.”
26: From your logline I am assuming that Shamus is going to be pursuing Angie. “Get the girl back.” This issue I’m having at this moment is, I don’t really feel like the girl is worth getting back. She seems kind of heartless to me. I’ll see where this is going, maybe you have an alternate love interest for Shamus when he puts things together. But if Angie is really the end goal, right now I’m feeling like she isn’t sympathetic enough. Or rather, her reasons for kicking Shamus to the curb haven’t really stood out to me. You’ve alluded to it, that Shamus isn’t the same since his father died, but it just doesn’t seem to be showing as much as it should. In short… I don’t like Angie.
28: I like this exchange
A forest full of trees will
eventually drop some branches.
And a mouth full of fist will shut
thee the fuck up.
30: nice line
‘Bout eight years and one vasectomy
34: I like this exchange of dialog.
Then save it. When you fall head
over heels for me...
(looks up longer)
...this will be a conversation you
could never take back.
I never fall.
Maybe you’ve never been pushed.
You’re some kind of freak show,
huh? I was just gonna tell you my
beloved dog ran away.
35: I’m digging Ever.
Sure. And if you need help hunting
down that bitch, give me a jingle.
39: great line
She’s in the shower. Washing off my
love, if you get my drift.
41: I’m wondering what Shelly’s deal with the camcorder is.
49: great subtext.
102: I was genuinely worried that I was going to hate your ending. I’m not worried anymore. read
by capper on 01/31/2011Hi I read this when it was called Open Pit. I don't have a copy of my original review, but I remember enjoying it. Opening: Okay, looks like the opening has changed from past to present. Spandex scene could have been milked more, but I know you didn't want to make his relationship with Violet too awkward or else how would Ever like him, right? Perhaps you can make him... Hi
I read this when it was called Open Pit. I don't have a copy of my original review, but I remember enjoying it.
Opening: Okay, looks like the opening has changed from past to present.
Spandex scene could have been milked more, but I know you didn't want to make his relationship with Violet too awkward or else how would Ever like him, right? Perhaps you can make him more blubbering outside the store so Violet feels like she needs to listen, rather than offering to? I don't know, but it felt like you missed a good opportunity for more conflict and comedy here.
You could have stayed a bit longer in the sports store to work on Shamus' patheticness. People could come in and recognize him as a former great, etc.
You mention a guitar in the log line and I only really see it mid-way through the story....
PG 95: Should be "we'll see about that"
Consider removing -ly words, they don't add anything you can't do without them, i.e.: "Fat Redneck drags his streamer on the ground", "Mack pauses picking his teeth" etc.
Consider removing a lot of your little descriptions/directions of small extraneous movements. Let your dialogue discreetly direct how your characters should react. Things like "putting down a guitar” and eye rolling, arm crossing, people elbowing each other, etc. These hinder the read and are directive. The also extend the page count for no reason. If the movement is not pivotal to the plot/story, it can be left out.
You tended to over describe too. Even though you cut out "the", "and", etc. you still went a bit too overboard, things like Angie and Shamus' room, the opening descriptions, small extraneous movements. The leaner could be, well, leaner (I know, bad pun, but I couldn't help myself).
Scenes felt like they went on a couple of lines too long. Remember, start late, finish early (opposite to sex!)
STORY: The whole guitarist thing feels really, really, tacked on. We don't get a whiff of it until mid-way through the story. It definitely shouldn't be part of your logline as it has no bearing on the plot in any way, shape or form.
The previous version I read did not have any reference to a guitar, and I feel it should stay that way. Removing it will drop the page count below 100; it's up to you of course.
If you have to keep it, you need to really work it into the story more, make it a part of the plot, i.e.: Shamus is a mini rock star, never played shoes. His dad dies on the pit by Lance's doing, so Shamus takes up the shoes to get back at lance, win the title for his dad, and blah, blah, blah - This would mean that the guitar stuff should be mentioned in the logline.
Shamus quitting, then going back in was fine enough, but he seems to totally forget why he quit (not being with his father) when he gets back in. In fact, I don't recall Shamus even caring about any of that from that point onwards. There is no real self-realization that his dad was fine with Shamus not being in the hospital, or whatever point you wanted him to realize, other than, hey, Ever is the girl I should be with, which is fine, but you need to tie all the loose ends
Characters: Everybody seems to do Confucius sayings in your story. Carl , Ever, Mack, Angie, Shamus, Barb, practically everyone. It's good for Carl cause that's his "thing" but everybody else does it making it less effective when Carl does.
Apart from the above they were individual and felt real for the world you created.
OVERALL: I still enjoyed it, though I found the guitar bit extraneous. I would have liked more comedy injected personally, but it still had some amusing moments.
Good Luck. read
by craigpau on 01/30/2011I liked your story. Great job. Maybe if it was simpler with less characters and longer scenes, it would be easier to read, but I thought you did a good job given all that. I like the idea of a story taking place in the world of horseshoes. Hasn’t really been done before, at least not to my recollection. And it seemed like it’s ripe for a comedy because it’s one of those... I liked your story. Great job. Maybe if it was simpler with less characters and longer scenes, it would be easier to read, but I thought you did a good job given all that.
I like the idea of a story taking place in the world of horseshoes. Hasn’t really been done before, at least not to my recollection. And it seemed like it’s ripe for a comedy because it’s one of those dorky sports like bowling, darts, etc. People like to riff on it because they think anybody can do it. Not true, by the way.
I felt a little lost at the beginning with all the ‘horseshoe lingo’.
A lot of characters are introduced in the first 15 pages. Hard to keep track of everyone. Having said that, as the story progressed, it was easy to follow each character because they were distinct.
Reminds me of the Farrelly Bros. film ‘Kingpin’ a little bit.
I like the ending a lot, even though I saw it coming. Made me smile. I wanted him to go back to Ever.
There was a little too much ‘Mrs. Jenkins’. It was funny at first, then got a little predictable and less funny.
p.8 – The BJ thing was kinda funny.
Did the story jump ahead two years? You should put TWO YEARS LATER in slugline.
p.41 – typo – ‘Uses it to opens door’
p.72 – Ever turns on Shamus pretty fast. Didn’t seem like she was this type of person. It feels more like – now that I know how it ends – that you needed them to break up here so you have it turn around at the end. Something to think about.
The tournament between Lance and Shamus goes on pretty long. It’s too long when it’s on paper and I’m reading it, but in reality, on film, it would probably be this long. Your call.
p.97 – ‘you’re’, not ‘your’
Even though the characters were fairly typical, it was still a fun read. Please disregard my notes if they don’t make sense to you. It’s just my opinion. Keep writing. read
by mcbrainder on 01/29/2011Well, to start out with, I honestly never thought I'd read a script or see a movie that was about horseshoes, but I think you did the game itself justice in that you made it as exciting as I personally imagine horseshoes could be. (that's not an insult. Just my way of saying I know nothing, nor have I ever been very interested in knowing much about it). I thought you did... Well, to start out with, I honestly never thought I'd read a script or see a movie that was about horseshoes, but I think you did the game itself justice in that you made it as exciting as I personally imagine horseshoes could be. (that's not an insult. Just my way of saying I know nothing, nor have I ever been very interested in knowing much about it).
I thought you did a good job of matching it up against movies like it. The characters and their dialogue for the most part seemed to blend in well with what was happening. I found it to be a smooth, believable read and enjoyed it quite a bit.
I felt you had a missed opportunity or two. The best example is Shamu being fired with the spandex comments. It was funny, but it happened quickly and you could've milked the moment a little more. That said, I had a hard time truly determining the genre here. I thought it had a lot of heart and you toyed with some pretty serious issues and motives with the characters, and some of the comedy fit into it well, but then at other times, it seemed like you were trying to be spoofy. The names of the characters, the overly perverted characters, falling down the steps, getting kicked in the balls... These aren't things I'm entirely against, but you seemed to be writing one story with two different comedic styles. My opinion is that it would make a better dramady than comedy, and half the time, that's what it felt like. The other half, it felt silly, and like you were going for something else entirely.
More lines like: "I'm gonna get you an English/asshole dictionary" would've been nice too. I think you seem like you're pretty sharp with comedy and that you're capable of thought-provoking dialogue and themes. I think you under-used this ability throughout. There was just an odd balance of comedy/drama and styles of humor. I'm sure this isn't what happened, but it was as if you wrote ten pages, and then passed it on to someone else to write ten. I hope that makes sense. It's not a huge criticism and is only my opinion, but to put it in a nutshell, I would say to simply decide what voice you want to tell this in.
I mention dramady, because the things that take it away from that are usually easy-laugh moments. Running into stumps, falling down steps, or being kicked in the balls are jokes that are recycled over and over again in movies. To me, (not to everyone though), they're the things I roll my eyes at, because it feels as though the writer was only doing it because they were writing a comedy.
I also felt Shamu's motives in quitting and then getting back into it was weak. Yeah, his father died, but his father was also a horseshoe-man before him and was proud, and it almost seems to me that would almost be a reason to put more into it. Then whe he does go back to it, unless I overlooked something, he just does. There was the competition with Lance, but that was there from the start anyway. I think this would be an opportunity to add more depth to Shamu and really explain what was traumatic enough to warrant the break and then what was motivating enough to return.
While it followed the storyline or plot of a lot of other movies before it, it was definitely unique with the horseshoes, but not entirely unpredictable, which could go in your favor, because that's how things are generally done these days anyway. You followed a formula, but kudos to you for having some sharp dialogue and thoughtfullness on your way through. I also can't say I noticed any typos, and can appreciate that.
I wish you luck with your writing. I think you have all the right elements in place and the kind of style that keeps a person glued because its an easy read with mostly good and real dialogue. Best of luck and thanks for the read!
by red_shadow on 01/27/2011Ok it took me quite some time to read this script and when I went to reviewed it I accidentally removed it. So in fairness I am giving you a free will review but it won't be so detailed. Ok I cannot fault you on writing, formatting descriptions and all that. You know the craft of screenwriting as far as I am aware so and are able to create characters with their own flaws etc... Ok it took me quite some time to read this script and when I went to reviewed it I accidentally removed it. So in fairness I am giving you a free will review but it won't be so detailed.
Ok I cannot fault you on writing, formatting descriptions and all that. You know the craft of screenwriting as far as I am aware so and are able to create characters with their own flaws etc etc.
The story is a universal one, a guy is after the wrong girl and then has an epiphany and goes after the right girl, all with a sub story. Yours in this case is Horseshoe throwing.
So with everything working well I wondered why I could not get into it and why it was much harder to read than far thinner stories and one dimensional characters.
Maybe being an Aussie I just don't get horse shoe throwing, and my father has owned horses all my life, in fact there are horses a few hundred yards from me as I write and I live in the city.
Or maybe it was just that I was not into that part of the story, and I think that is what it is. I am just one audience member who did not have an interest in that story even though the characters etc are done well.
I kept thinking of Dodgeball and wondering why it was so good, and basically because of the over the top comedy. Dodgeball is pretty boring but they made it exciting through the outrageousness (made up word) of story and characters. I know that would have worked more with me.
That does not say it does not work for others but it may limit your marketability for the story.
Otherwise a fine effort. Good luck if you make into SOM. read
by macaggiano on 01/24/2011This script worked really well on a lot of different levels. Structurally, it was very sound, while at the same time making good use of reversals to mix up a genre that can be very predictable. This type of concept has shown to be very marketable, and I think you've chosen just the right genre and tone to tell your story. Due to the solid execution of this script, I... This script worked really well on a lot of different levels. Structurally, it was very sound, while at the same time making good use of reversals to mix up a genre that can be very predictable.
This type of concept has shown to be very marketable, and I think you've chosen just the right genre and tone to tell your story.
Due to the solid execution of this script, I really only have a couple suggestions.
First, while there is plenty of depth to Shamus as a character, I think he could use some more. It's a good conflict that his father dies and he gives up horse shoes. But I think you need to make more of a connection as to why one leads to the other. His father was a legend and wanted Shamus to continue to the legacy. It'd be different if he had a more traditional father who told him he was wasting his life. I didn't really buy the part about him "not getting to say goodbye," they already had a good relationship, he didn't need to make amends. And while his "giving up" is a theme carried throughout the movie, even into the climax, it's a lot less cimimatic that what other similar stories have done. The act of giving up has tons of internal conflict, but nothing external, and nothing you can bring humor to. When adversary strikes, Happy Gilmore has trouble controlling his anger. Tin Cup has to prove to everyone that he's better than them. We watch them gradually struggle with these issues and when the big match comes we know they're going to have to deal with their issues.
The question to ask is, what is it about Shamus that is keeping him from beating Lance. You've portrayed from the opening and a flashback, that Shamus is clearly the better shoe player. So, I think we need something tangible, something visual that we see Shamus battle. Some of the most memorable scenes from those films were when the characters are dealing with it. Happy Gilmore flipping out while putting, and losing his temper on the course. Tin Cup breaking his clubs and having to play the back nine with the 7-iron. While Dodgeball was amusing, I think it lacked this dimension in character as well. Sure they wanted to stop the gym from closing, but we don't see the characters struggle with their internal flaws.
The only other aspect of this script that I think can be improved upon - and this is totally objectionable - is the humor. There was a lot of humor built into the script, but as in Dodgeball, they didn't seem to be organic to the story or concept. Of course everyone's humor is different, but my favorite type of humor tends to be when it comes about naturally as a result of the characters in the scene or the concept of the script. Shamus comes off as the straight guy - surrounded by a erection-wielding step dad, crazy friends, an OCD sister, and a sexually over active elder neighbor. And while these supporting roles add humor as Shamus interacts with them, that seems to be all they're there for. For example, if Shamus had anger management issues and was frustrated chucking horseshoes (like Happy Gilmore), I'd take his friend that spouts off all the philosphy, and make him a pacifist. Your supporting characters should all mirror some aspect of Shamus and his internal struggles. This is where my favorite type of humor lies.
Other than that, congrats on a job well done! Best of luck with it. read
- Writer: Dana Garrity
- Uploaded by: xpertcage
- Length: 108 pages
- Genre: comedy
- Due to software issue, please excuse the absence of a
This comedy is a re-write of the previously titled, Brewin' The Pits.
1st Place(out of 2313) Cherub Film's Screenplay Contest; 1st Place - The-Greenlight Screenplay Contest; 4th place - Script Vamp; finalist - Exposurama; finalist - Writer's Place; semi- finalist - Blue Cat; quarter-finalist - Scriptapalooza.
- Bio: After seven scripts and one option, I feel like I'm starting to get the hang of this... while continuing to learn with each scene I write and script I read.
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