View Full Version : Trapped - by Chris Keaton

01-21-2012, 05:02 PM

Searching for a bit of the past a survivor of the apocalypse finds himself trapped.

One location
3-5 Actors

01-21-2012, 05:08 PM
Genius. Naming it after the festival.

01-21-2012, 09:01 PM
I'm all about being original. ;)

01-22-2012, 01:25 PM
A little "on the nose" Keaton. :happy:

02-08-2012, 10:43 PM
I dig this a lot, Chris. Very cool.

The “he thinks he’s alive but he’s dead” twist at the end got me good. Didn’t see it coming, and I really loved how that moment is what FREED HIM.
In fact, that’s pretty much my only note on the whole thing: that moment, that climax of the script, the transformative moment for our hero, got this:


Now, I KNOW that economy of words is not my thing and that I’m about to try to talk you in to a cardinal sin: getting all blah blah blah in your action….BUT…I just kind of wish you would have reveled in that moment a little more. Talk us through it. Tell us about the shock, then the horror, then the panic, then the acceptance, then the glorious, glorious RELIEF that Dave goes through in that moment. It’s a big, big moment.

That’s some small beans though. I really like this script.

And what’s with this EXHIBITION stuff? Move your script into the contest with everybody else! Who’s going to argue with that? You deserve it! And hell, I think you’ve got a decent chance to win. And if anybody says boo about you trying to put the fix in…well…I’ll be the first to drop an engine block on their ass.

02-09-2012, 05:04 PM
TRAPPED by Chris Keaton
Overall: 9
Plot: 9
Characters: 9
Dialogue: 9
Theme: 9 Thing can always be worse
Structure: 9
Originality: 9
Style/Quality of Writing: 9
Entertainment Value: 9
Cinematic Quality: 8

Synopsis: Society has fallen. A man stumbles into a garage and spies a DVD player left in a grease pit.
When he tries to get it he accidentally release an engine suspended by a chain which lands on him.
He lays there for days pondering his life and situation. Some people show up. He asks for help but
gets none. It's revealed he is already dead. His ghost figure thanks them for release.

Pg 1
***Love this opening visual starting in the middle of the story.
Itís been months since Iíve seen anyone else
***Interesting add
Pg 2
I shouldíve finished myself off a year ago when Kristen died.
***Good story telling
Pg 4
Whispered voices echo
***If these are audible words then they need told. I'm loving this story.
Jim gives his head a little shake.
***As in no or as in sorry?
Pg 6
It probably took him hours to die.
Shock crosses Daveís face.
at the corpse of Dave
***Now he is dead?
I thought I heard something.
***Fantastic finish. If I had one suggested change it would be to
add MARK Poor bastard. We should bury him. and delete the sentence after.
I'm sorry you disqualified yourself as this should be a shoe-in winner.
This is an easy, low budget, can do, production. Well done!

02-09-2012, 05:24 PM
Pretty good story. I wasn't a fan of the structure, but it works.

I really liked the twist. Didn't see it coming early.

I was really loving the ignoring sequence and understood then that Dave was dead. Some of the dialog kind of hammered it.

The ending I also found a bit weird. I imagine he thanked them because they told him he was dead, which freed him? I dunno, I think there is a cleaner way to end this.

Can't say I understood what happened exactly, as far as his accident. I'm not familiar with mechanical repair shops. I don't know anything about the chain or pulley or engine. So all that was just letters on a page to me. Way too specific.

Rustom Irani
02-10-2012, 12:16 PM
The stark visuals, bleak play of visuals, especially detailing the type and sources of light, are all things that should really entice a producer to pick this up.

Personally, I would've loved to play out the silences without VO and only let VO come in without serving on the nose exposition. Instead of him talking about silence, or dogs, maybe just let sounds prey on his fear and in turn, ours.

Sniffing, a distant howl, packs fighting over some poor animal, hell even somebody getting torn to pieces late at night.

Otherwise, love the twist, the present/flashback structure and love the ending.

This would make top three in most competitions, let alone this one.

Great stuff Chris!

02-10-2012, 03:04 PM
Thanks for the feedback guys. Nice ideas Rustom.

Sarah Daly
02-15-2012, 03:19 PM
Ooh I do love a bit of dystopia! Really nice pace to this Chris and a very smart idea. I like how the apocalypse was mostly backdrop - sort of just a vague mood rather than an in-your-face set of circumstances. Genuinely tragic too when you realise he's dead - that whole part just after the family arrive is great. The V.O. worked well enough but yep you could cut some of it and replace it with other forms of exposition. There was one line that stuck out as being a bit clunky that I reckon you could cut:

'Funny how something like losingmusic can push you to do something
stupid to get it back.

But yep - great little set up, lots of drama, I cared about the character plus it should be easy enough to produce. Nice job, Chris!! And great job with the fest too!!

02-15-2012, 03:19 PM
I've got a lot of admiration for Chris Keaton's writing, his particular style has always been instantly recognisable to me (and that is a positive) in the way i might expect Rod Sterling to walk on set - so too are there some ironic crafty twists and surreal stylisations in his stories. There is usually a big and ridiculous monster (that i delight in reading) and some hard bitten character (reminding me of Clint Eastwood!) Not always mind but usually!

So with that in mind I set myself to 'Trapped'

Page 1
(Our introduction to Dave - nice macho setup!)

righto and so this story was (and did) nothing like you might normally do! Which is fine - its a good solid story, I like the manner of the dialogue, the grittiness, its unashamedly American, and it feels it - rugged et all.

You made the production values plausible for a film of this type (imo) and I enjoy the ending as well. Its good (and i hope this isn't too cheeky, but another script of a similar trapped individual story took that twist ending a little further conceptually) thats the only thing that could have made this even stronger.

I saw 'even' stronger because its solid good hardworking entertainment right now as it is. It all works, and its perfectly competent! I can imagine a director or art director maybe coming up with some cool ideas for the reveal (of the body) which could juxtapose with our more 'alive' version of Dave we see!

This also reads easy - it reads easy in the way (and the style in fact) of a Dean Koontz novel! The more i think about it the more your work reminds me (of just some aspects of his writing style) and well, that's great.

So I enjoyed the script, entertaining and something that could be shot tomorrow by many filmmakers.

//edit (just to add as Sarah had picked up on this, the dystopia setting - i loved that too. nice one.

02-15-2012, 03:39 PM
Thanks guys. I can't believe I left that line in like that.

Bill Clar
02-21-2012, 05:48 PM
I like your reveal of the rucksack. Casual, yet a natural action. I've certainly dropped my bag plenty of times and nearly spilled the contents.

Ow! That's a helluva way to be trapped. Brutal.

I did not see that coming. Wow. That's a great twist.

Great job!