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    Monsters at Dawn -- by Michael Traven
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    First time entering. Started the script a few hours ago, and just finished at 4.5 pages. It's okay to send it off to friends/fellow writers for critique, right?

    Also, is it okay to use a Google image for the poster or does it have to be original? I'm assuming since the poster is voluntary and not part of the judging, it's okay to use a plate background image. If not, let me know and I'll change it!

    ------------------------

    "MONSTERS AT DAWN"

    written by Michael Traven


    Forest Night title.jpg
    "Trying to make a movie in Hollywood is like trying to grill a steak by having a succession of people coming into the room and breathing on it." - Douglas Adams


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    Poster's a little small, but apparently that's what you get when you crop an image three times...
    "Trying to make a movie in Hollywood is like trying to grill a steak by having a succession of people coming into the room and breathing on it." - Douglas Adams


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    #3
    ScriptFEST Mod Chris_Keaton's Avatar
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    Welcome to the mad house!

    No worries about reviews prior, we all need them. As for the poster, I don't see a problem with since I doubt you are going to sell the poster, but you may want to consult your lawyer.
    Chris Keaton - Writer | Website | Email | imdb |
    ______________________________________________
    Samurai ScriptFest: A Dream of Electric Revolution (1st Place)
    Suspense ScriptFest: A Clockwork Darkened(2nd Place)
    Trapped ScriptFest: Trapped (3rd Place)


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    #4
    Member DarrenJSeeley's Avatar
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    Didn't know what to make of this, but I liked it. A lot. A vampire and a zombie (I would have though more of a ghoul, but I'll roll with it) on the run from hunters/army. Daylight's coming. Trapped under a tree and other debris. Love it. A little B-film/Corman-esque but in a good way. One of my early favorites thus far.

    Only minor downsides...some repeated words aren't needed I think, also, the use of 'then' isn't needed.


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    Senior Member taylormade's Avatar
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    I liked this one, but have to agree with Darren that a ghoul would be more appropriate. I'm no expert, but aren't zombies souless automations on the hunt for human flesh. Seems more like he'd try to eat McCaver than be his friend. And at the end you have him being hefted up and dragged away. Why save him, he's a zombie! They'd shoot him in the head! Plus (I watch The Walking Dead, so I know) nobody would get close enough to a zombie to lift and drag him. They would never risk being bitten. Also, don't vampires have superhuman strength? Why is McCaver trapped under the tree, and why is he bleeding?

    Technical problems aside this was a nicely written story that did a good job of turning the conventional hero/badguy scenerio on it's head. Good descriptions, good, dialogue and a fast pace. The scenes of then running through the woods would make a terrific visual up on the screen. Thanks for a good read.
    "If they move, kill'em!"


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    ScriptFEST Mod Chris_Keaton's Avatar
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    Notes:
    - I like the way you show the piece through the view of the monsters.
    - Not sure how to show a silver bullet, but that bullet-time effect could do this just fine.

    I probably would've enjoyed the ending if they put the beasts out of their misery. I just didn't feel it, because you just took normal people being hunted and changed it to monsters. I figure their emotions and stuff may be similar to ours, but expressed maybe differently. But then again I doubt you could get that out in a short. Overall a nice script.
    Chris Keaton - Writer | Website | Email | imdb |
    ______________________________________________
    Samurai ScriptFest: A Dream of Electric Revolution (1st Place)
    Suspense ScriptFest: A Clockwork Darkened(2nd Place)
    Trapped ScriptFest: Trapped (3rd Place)


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    Senior Member DarkElastic's Avatar
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    Hi Michael,

    Thanks for the read.

    Good:
    Nice twist to classic legends.
    I like the characters that you have created. I like that you have Tommy unable to form words.
    The tension is built up so well and you really get behind these two usual villians.
    The battle scenes really come out from the page. Easy to visualise them.

    Not so good:
    I suppose this is trapped, but it is loose.
    Would blood loss effect a zombie?
    It ends well, but feels like there is more to this. And that makes me think how we came into the script, that there is more before.


    Overall, I really enjoyed this. I think you could really have something good here if you develop it further. Well done.


    Marshall Dean

    Writer/Producer


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    #8
    Senior Member Sunk99's Avatar
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    MONSTERS AT DAWN by MICHAEL TRAVEN

    Overall: 5
    Plot: 4
    Characters: 6
    Dialogue: 5
    Theme:
    Structure: 6
    Originality: 4
    Style/Quality of Writing: 6
    Entertainment Value: 4
    Cinematic Quality: 6

    Synopsis: Various monsters flee from soldiers. A zombies and a vampires, who are friends, help each run.
    The vampire is trapped by a falling tree. The soldiers arrive and taunt the zombie as they watch the sun rise
    and cook the vampire. The soldiers drag the zombie off.

    Comments:
    Pg 1
    trees, explodes
    ***and explode
    Hordes of creatures
    ***Needs defined even if simply "various" I would drag the Zombies and Vampires from the next line and add it with the creatures.
    his friend
    ***This is a character and must be introduced by description for visualization. Can't wait until the next action to descibe.
    around, races
    replace comma with and
    ***Side note - I thought vampires were super strong?
    Pg 2
    again, again
    ***and again
    Tommy, come here!
    ***I thought he was right there
    Listen, you’ve got to go. Run, just go. Just go!
    ***Realistic dialogue?
    Yes, the buttons.
    ***???
    soldier - DOUG.
    ***Reason to name a soldier?
    ***why didn't they shoot both of them?
    Pg 4
    I wonder, are those your cousins?
    ***Realistic?

    The story isn't a complete story. It's more just a single plot point of something bigger.The dialogue is not realistic and too much.
    Monster scenes such as this should have non-stop action. Sorry - didn't work for me, but you can write.


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    #9
    Senior Member Bill Clar's Avatar
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    Great opening. Very intense.

    Soldiers are not capitalized when introduced.

    Unnecessary use of "(cont'd)" in Macaver's dialogue.

    Great action, but the story is incomplete. You have the second and third act, but no setup. I need to know why Tommy and Macaver are running from the soldiers. Without it, I have no attachment to the characters.
    So, you hate your job? There's a support group for that. It's called EVERYONE. We meet at the bar at 5:00.


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    #10
    Senior Member themightyshrub's Avatar
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    Hey Michael - really liked this! There's going to be plenty of people pointing out things like 'vampires can't bleed' or 'zombies and vampires can't be friends', but when writing something like this, I'd bear in mind a conversation that Max Landis (son of John Landis) once had with his Dad about writing with supernatural creatures -

    John: Son, how do you kill a vampire?
    Max: Stake through the heart, garlic, crosses, sunlight ...
    John: Wrong. You can kill a vampire however the poo poo you want, because they don't exist.

    I think that's basically what you've done here - taken two types of monsters and created your own mythology around them, which is really hard to do in this amount of space. The friendship between the two felt real, and I really felt for Tommy. You did a really good job of fleshing out his character without the use of speech - actions really do speak louder than words!

    I liked the ending, and I think the dialogue between Walter and MaCaver is brilliantly twisted.

    There's only a couple of things I'd pick you up on though. I didn't see the need to name all of the soldiers. They're not real CHARACTERS, we get no back story or personality from them, they're just bodies to move the story along, so I think you could have gotten away with just referring to them as SOLDIER, and saying things like "two soldiers hold Tommy back". Giving them names made them feel important and like I was supposed to have an interest in them, when really they were just necessary fluff.

    The other thing is that it really felt like part of a bigger story. I didn't particularly care why the zombies and vampires were getting chased by the army - that's kind of obvious really, but I wanted more. It seemed like it was over too soon for me. I don't really know how you could have changed that within the word limit, so you won't be getting marked down for it, it just bugged me a little. If you're thinking of doing anything at all with this, I'd flesh it out a little more (which you can do without a page limit!), and then it'd be great!

    Overall, a really entertaining read, and I loved the way you put your own spin on some classic monsters.
    Don't Say I Didn't Warn You! - Top Ten - DVXScriptFest III, Top Three - Zoetrope Short Script of the Month
    http://www.heathergreig.co.uk


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