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Thursday, November 30, 2017

Hell Bent – Short Script Review (available for production) - posted by Don

Hell Bent (10 pages in pdf format) by John Staats writing as Louis No’mour (JEStaats)

Three bandits on the run must choose their own path to Peace.

Three horseback riders must ride through an Indian cemetery to get to freedom. But Indians don’t like it when white folks wake them up.

Characters – 3 main
Locations – 3 – desert, mountains, hotel
CGI – skeletons, ghostly horses, real horses

John Staats is a talented and prolific writer who can be reached at: jestaats (a) hotmail.com.


This is an October 2017 One Week Challenge is a short. The OWC is a screenwriting exercise wherein writers are given a week to write a short script on the theme and genre provided. These are quickly done and may be a little rough around the edges considering the short time frame in which they are written.

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer: Khamanna Iskandarova has several features completed, as well as a dozen shorts, some of which have been independently produced. Khamanna can be reached at khamanna (a) hotmail. Check out her IMDB Creds

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Living Nightmare – Short Script Review, Available for Production - posted by Don

Living Nightmare (10 pages in pdf format) by Warren Duncan

A woman with severe Insomnia finally gets some rest, but it comes with horrific consequences.

Two identical twins, Jemma and Cassie, used to be inseparable. One day Jemma leaves without a notice. Everything goes downhill since then. Cassie develops severe insomnia that wouldn’t let go. Her doctor finally finds a cure – now Cassie can fall asleep and see Jemma in her dreams all she wants.

Characters – 2 main, 1 episodical
Location – 3 – 2 houses, doctor’s office

About the Writer: Warren Duncan is a multi produced writer from Australia. He has email and can be reached at Warren_Duncan (a) hotmail.com. He has a website where you can find his screenplays.


This is an October 2017 One Week Challenge is a short. The OWC is a screenwriting exercise wherein writers are given a week to write a short script on the theme and genre provided. These are quickly done and may be a little rough around the edges considering the short time frame in which they are written.

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer: Khamanna Iskandarova has several features completed, as well as a dozen shorts, some of which have been independently produced. Khamanna can be reached at khamanna (a) hotmail. Check out her IMDB Creds.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Damn Your Eyes – Short Script Review, Available for Production - posted by Guest Reviewer

Damn Your Eyes (9 pages in pds format) by Steve Miles

A scopophobic recluse finds his quest for answers takes him closer to the truth than he ever expected…

Damn Your Eyes is a quirky tale about Brookes, a young man living under the constant scrutiny of neighbors. Brookes is onto them. He watches them right back. One day he realizes that it’s not about the neighbors watching him, but another unknown force that sees everything and everyone around him.

Characters – 1 main, 2 extras
Location – 1 – house
Prop – telescope

About the writer: Steve Miles is an award-winning writer who can be reached at stevemiles80 (a) yahoo.co.uk. Please check out his wonderful works here: SJMilesScripts.webs.com.


This is an October 2017 One Week Challenge is a short. The OWC is a screenwriting exercise wherein writers are given a week to write a short script on the theme and genre provided. These are quickly done and may be a little rough around the edges considering the short time frame in which they are written.

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer: Khamanna Iskandarova has several features completed, as well as a dozen shorts, some of which were produced by independent producers. Khamanna can be reached at khamanna “AT” hotmail. Check out her IMDB Creds

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

QC Challenge Results - posted by James Barron

The QC Challenge results are in!

Writers faced a grueling, time-sensitive challenge and came through in spades. These scripts are light on page count and locale, but heavy on drama. No surprise that one short has already been snatched up for production. Don’t miss out on the rest!

 

Top voted script:

Cyborn by Mark Renshaw

A hunted, dying android crawls beneath the broken alter of a gutted Church. His name is Braxx. To the enraged Luddite mob outside, he has no name. He is a thing. An abomination of metal and wires they’ll soon rip apart the moment they’ve cleared the barricades.

Braxx’s sole comfort in his darkest hour – a set of dice. A very special set designed to trigger memories, each roll eliciting panoptic bursts of random past experience.

So, as the hordes close in, Braxx rolls. And remembers. And spends his last moments in the most human way possible – clinging to every moment before that, to life, through the wonderful vagaries of chance.

***Script currently in contest consideration. Only available upon request. Mark Renshaw can be reached through his website at http://www.mark-renshaw.com. An award-winning producer and director, his last project earned ‘Best Sci-Fi’ at the Top Shorts and Festigious film festivals.

 

Other top picks:

Ice Cream Soda pdf format by Steven Clark

Death is an everyday presence in nursing homes. But after a well-liked patient’s expiration, Nurse Helen begins to sense a more immediate, tangible force. Something sinister in origin, lurking like vapors from a faulty gas valve. It’s so near, this presence, she can hear it. A tap tapping coming from down the hall. Drawn to it, to the strange sight of a little girl at the end of the hall. A little girl singing a haunting nursery rhyme that chills Helen to the core.

Read the full script here. Based in upstate, NY, Steven Clark is the writer of over 30 short scripts, several of which are under option, in pre-production, or have already been made into films. He can be reached at Steamroller138 “AT” gmail and his work can be found on his new website.

 

Eeny Meeny pdf format by Dustin Bowcott

For octogenarian Imani, time has not healed the wounds of racial bigotry suffered growing up in an all-white 1950’s neighborhood. Nor has it helped reconcile her single, horrible act of retaliation. Time has only sharpened dueling emotions of guilt and indignation down to a fine, cutting shame. Haunted by images of her past, trapped in a maelstrom of self-loathing, Imani will make one last desperate attempt to break the cycle of remembrance.

Read the full script here. Dustin Bowcott is a BBC Writer’s Room and Shore Scripts finalist. He is a produced and optioned writer, and has recently turned his hand to production. You can reach him at dustin7375 “AT” gmail.

 

Skip pdf format by Gary Howell

Caring for a loved one with dementia is a special challenge. Anna’s learned to steel herself to the blank stares and tepid responses that dominate her mother’s once ebullient charm. But on this particular visit, Anna’s brought along her granddaughter. And for one fleeting moment something truly magical is about to happen. Something that will briefly unite four generations in shared harmony.

Read the full script here. Gary is an attorney and accomplished author who can be reached at garymhowell “AT” gmail.

 

Sunset View pdf format by Pia Cook

Senior citizens Todd and Martin have vastly different views on their twilight years. Todd sees opportunity, an aura of significance to each day with a multiplicity of joys yet to be discovered. For Martin, it’s an inevitable march to the grave blighted by lonely nights and illness. Determined to change his friend’s outlook, Todd arranges the perfect date with a vivacious female resident. But will it be enough?

Read the full script here. Born and raised in Sweden, Pia Cook has four produced features, a fifth one in pre-production, and twenty five shorts to her name. Check out her IMDB creds. She started writing screenplays in 2006 and has written seventy short screenplays and ten features. She can be reached at gatortales “AT” gmail.

 

On a Pair of Dice pdf format by Dena McKinnon

Love your neighbor. Feed the hungry. Comfort the sorrowful. These are some of the most basic Christian principles. Notions that will be put to the test when a mysterious beggar stumbles into a prosperous Church during tidy Sunday worship. And the item he places in the offering plate just might send shock waves through the entire community.

Read the full script here. Dena McKinnon is a talented writer with a number of produced shorts under her belt. Check out Dena’s IMDB credits and website at DenaMcKinnon.com/.

 

Congrats to Warren Duncan, who’s script Numbers of the Beast was optioned before the contest even finished. You can find more of his work here. Last but not least, be sure to check out all the other QC Challenge scripts for more great stories!

These screenplays may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer and runner of the Quickie Challenge: James Barron is a former law student turned screenwriter who loves to write comedy along with the occasional horror/thriller. Check out his work at JBarronScripts.com

Thursday, August 17, 2017

At the End of My Day – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - posted by Gary Rowlands

At The End Of My Day by Rod Thompson

A ghost hunter takes off in search of an urban legend… only to find some mysteries are best left in the past.

Since the dawn of time, mankind has been held spellbound by ghost stories. Be it around the campfire, in print, or up on the silver screen, there’s something spine-tinglingly good about a spooky tale laden with creepy atmosphere and supernatural tormentors.

Much like the apparitions themselves, good ghost stories never die. They simply haunt our memory. Forever.

Some of the very best ones also serve up a twist ending that not only terrifies us to our core, but hits us on a deep emotional level as well. One need only think of M. Night Shyamalan’s superb The Sixth Sense – to appreciate just how effective this type of storytelling can be.

Writer Rod Thompson continues this proud tradition of spooky ghostly tales with his excellent At the End of My Day.

When eight year old Norman Ellis is confronted by a weeping apparition at the foot of the stairs, his entire world is changed. Though assured by his parents that there is no such thing as ghosts, Norman finds his belief system turned upside down. And a life long obsession forms. What exactly is the Crying Man? And what mystery lies beyond those tears?

Flash forward some forty years. Norman, now a practising parapsychologist, arrives at his childhood home determined to solve the mystery once and for all. Not that he comes alone. This time he’s forewarned and forearmed: with state-of-the-art equipment, and energetic assistant Curtis.

All to soon, darkness falls. Footsteps can be heard upstairs. The wood floors creak and moan… hints of some ghostly presence.

Sure enough, the Crying Man apparition floats towards them. And Norman looks upon it with terror and disbelief…

Will Norman and Curtis survive this ghostly encounter,or will yet more tears be shed – this time, at their grisly end?

Budget: low.

About the writer, Rod Thompson: I have been writing creatively since I learned how to write. There is just something about telling a story that I can never get over. Storytelling in itself is like an old flame that occasionally comes to me and just says, “Use me.” The ability to watch a movie through words, or to craft a world in such a manner is the closest to Godliness that man will ever come. True story. Contact Rod at RodThompson1980 (a) gmail

Read At The End Of My Day (8 pages in pdf format)

Find more scripts available for production

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer: Gary Rowlands cut his teeth writing sketch comedy and was a commissioned writer on the hugely popular Spitting Image broadcast on national television in the UK. His contained horror Offline was the ‘featured script of the month’ in March and has since been optioned. He is seeking representation and can be contacted at gazrow (a) hotmail.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Chemistry of Life – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - posted by David M Troop

Chemistry of Life by David D. DeBord

 Maybe Timmy’s brilliant ten-year-old mind can fix the horrors of his life.  Right after he re-animates his dead gerbil.

 We’re all familiar with Mary Shelley’s story of Frankenstein – the mad doctor who creates a living, breathing monster by reanimating a corpse.   The film version starring Boris Karloff is an American classic that’s been scaring us for almost one hundred years.  In that time we’ve seen countless remakes and re-imaginings .  Not to mention merchandising, cartoons, and comics – the Frankenstein monster is an icon even preschoolers can identify.

With all that diluting, it’s easy to forget the truly horrific question posed by Shelley.   If it were possible, would you bring a dead person back to life?  And even more important: should you?

Chemistry of Life asks that very question, albeit on a smaller scale.

Timmy is the ten-year-old mad scientist from Jackson Heights Elementary School, with a home life that’s less than ideal.  He lives with his drug-addicted mother and her boyfriend Spider in the remnants of a dilapidated home.  His older brother recently died.  And if that isn’t depressing enough, his only friend in the world is a gerbil named Ralph.

One day after school, Timmy decides he must fix the horrors of his life – even if that means Ralphie has to take one for the team.  So little Timmy unpacks his back pack full of borrowed equipment from the school lab, assembles his Dr. Frankenstein Junior Starter Kit, and gets down to grisly work.

What happens to poor Ralphie? And what further horrors lie in store? Give this script a read, and you’ll see. We guarantee some shivers down your spine.

Decanted from the mind of scriptwriter David D. Debord, Chemistry of Life is a unique take on Frankenstein. A mini monster movie begging to be “brought to life”!

Budget:  Low to Medium.   The biggest cost will be the gerbil brain dissection scene.  (I told you this script was awesome.)

About the writer: David D. DeBord has been a professional scriptwriter for twenty years. Recently he had three short film scripts produced, one in Fairfield, Iowa, a second in Houston, Texas and a third in Matulji, Croatia. In past years, his award winning scripts have been produced on radio, stage, television, and film. He is a past president and founding member of the Iowa Scriptwriters Alliance and lives in Des Moines, Iowa with his wife, the best woman on the planet, Kris Sutton. Contact him at downtowndave “AT” att “DOT” net!

Read Chemistry of Life (five pages in PDF format)

Find more scripts available for production

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

About the reviewer:  David M Troop has been writing since he could hold a No.2 pencil. In 2011 he began writing short films for MoviePoet.com and Simplyscripts.com. His produced short scripts include INSOMNIAC and THE DINER. Born on the mean streets of Reading, PA, Dave now resides in Schuylkill Haven with his wife Jodi and their two lazy dogs Max and Mattie. He can be reached at dtroop506 (a) gmail.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

3 Hours till Dead – Film Review - posted by Anthony Cawood

3 hours till dead film review

An AWOL soldier and his buddies stop at an abandoned farmhouse and encounter the living dead.

Writer/Director, Jason Mills, has taken a basic limited location/limited cast premise and thrown some zombies at it rather than go the normal thriller route.

There’s an attempt at giving the characters a little three-dimensionality, with one of the leads an AWOL soldier with PTSD, but the majority are stock roles. For example, thrown into the mix is a guy who is positioned as dangerous and worse than the zombies, there’s always one!

But the main twist here is that the ‘infected’ live for three hours, so can our plucky bunch survive long enough to outlast them? I personally think this was a good idea but wasn’t used effectively enough.

Obviously, this is a low budget effort and tries hard to overcome this with a number of decently staged, and occasionally tense, attack sequences. The effects too are reasonable for this type of film, but…

Ultimately the problem here is that there is nothing that you’ve not seen before, it’s a zombie movie after all, so it’s all a bit too familiar.

Fairplay for a decent effort but it needed something to elevate it.


IMDB Watch it Streaming on Amazon

About the reviewer: Anthony Cawood is an award winning screenwriter from the UK with 4 short films produced and another 10 or so scripts optioned and/or purchased. Links to his films and details of his scripts can be found at www.anthonycawood.co.uk.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Play Dead – Short Script Review – Available for Production! - posted by LC

Play Dead by Stephen Wells

In the aftermath of the zombie apocalypse, one man believes he has the perfect strategy to survive, but what will his plan cost him?

Decades before George Romero’s Night Of The Living Dead ever hit the screen, the first feature length zombie horror film made its début. Its title: White Zombie, starring the inimitable Bela Lugosi. Prior to this in 1920, Robert Wiene mesmerized audiences with his silent film: The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, which depicted a killer in the guise of a sleeping-walking zombie.

Fast forward to the 80s and Romero set the gold standard in popular culture with his unique and oft imitated vision of the Undead as plodding lumbering cannibals.

Various Zombie incarnations have proliferated since. Though the source of Zombie plagues is often not divulged, zombie outbreaks often represent a decaying society, and are depicted as allegorical and cautionary tales. In a post apocalyptic world, corrupt governments, leaked mutant viruses, radioactive fallout and even supernatural occurrences frequently act as catalyst to any outbreak.

Zombie settings and genres are equally diverse. From outer space, to period drama, and movie musicals such as: Zombies On Broadway. From the brilliantly funny Zom-com: Shaun Of The Dead, to Zom-Rom-Com: Pride And Prejudice and Zombie, and the angst-ridden romance that is Warm Bodies. From the lumbering and kooky to the frenetic superfast avalanche of zombies in World War Z, and the grim and bloodthirsty mutants of Richard Matheson’s, I am Legend. How can we forget Danny Boyle’s provocative and intelligent reworking of a world gone to rack and ruin with its special brand of Rage-Zombies in 28 Days Later and its sequel: 28 Weeks Later.

From book, to comic strip, to video game, to movie and television, it seems our fascination and appetite for the Living Dead is insatiable.

So what makes a good Zombie script? Well, a fresh angle and originality is key. An audience wants to see something they haven’t seen before.

No easy task, but writer, Stephen Well’s short script Play Dead ticks all the boxes with his very cleverly crafted story.

We open on:

    A SKELETON sits propped up against a gas pump.

            MAN (V.O.)
In every city and every country
people died in record numbers. It was
a global pandemic. The end of mankind
as we knew it.

    Suddenly, the sound of FOOTSTEPS. Slow and listless.

            MAN (V.O.) (cont’d)
Then the darndest thing happened. The
dead started to rise.

    A SHADOW looms over the skeleton and a figure staggers into
    view… A ZOMBIE.

 

We meet: Trapper Hat, the protagonist and narrator of the piece. By his own admission Trapper’s a survivor, doing his best to blend in with the Undead around him. Its also clear Trapper Hat will do anything to survive. Through every word he utters it’s clear he’s capable and smart, but he’s also conceited, full of pride, and ruthless.

And yet…

            TRAPPER HAT (V.O.)
I shouldn’t have left them alone.

Trapper is also plagued by a guilty secret. A secret that could either redeem him, or could prove deadly.

    He rips the knife from the creature’s skull and uses it to
    open up its mid-section.

            TRAPPER HAT
I don’t need backup. I just do what it takes.

    He reaches in, takes two handfuls of blood and innards,
    smears them over his body and face. Gives himself a fresh
    coat of gore.

At this point the reader may well jump to the conclusion that this trope (above) seems a little familiar, but what happens next will shock and surprise you. From here on in this one definitely ain’t treading clichéd ground.

With its original storyline, visual writing and universal themes of love, loss, and betrayal, its multi-layered well drawn characters, and masterful twist, Play Dead is guaranteed to not only shock audiences but also bring a tear to the eye.

Play Dead was one of two Reader’s Choice picks in the April ’17 Apocalypse themed One Week challenge on Simply Scripts.

Filmmakers: We just know you’re dying to sink your teeth into this one and bite off all you can chew. You’d better move fast though, or you may well be left for dead.

Medium Budget: Depending on skills, but this one’s well worth it.
Exterior day-time shoot.
Three main characters: 40s male, mid 30s female, young lad of 14.
One motorcycle enthusiast.
Blood and gore FX, pyrotechnical skills would be handy, or use stock footage for one scene.
EXTRAS: A modest swarm of The Undead.

About the Writer:Hailing from Derbyshire, England, Stephen Wells is a graphic designer who has been writing for several years after first getting the screenwriting bug in 2009. He had a feature script optioned in 2013 and placed as a Quarter-Finalist in the 2014 Bluecat feature competition.

About the Reviewer: L. Chambers has been writing all her life – especially in her head, and on scraps of paper. It’s only in the last few years she began to get serious about screen-writing. Prior to this she worked in the Features Department for ABC TV as a Program Assistant, and trained as a FAD. She currently works as a freelance web-content editor and lives with her husband (also a screenwriter) in Sydney, Australia.

Read Play Dead (9 pages in PDF format)

Find more scripts available for production

This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Not My Son – Short Script Review, Available for Production - posted by James Barron

Not My Son by Glenn Doyle

After the death of her husband, a mother is convinced her son has been replaced after an accident leaves him paralyzed.

Nothing tests the human spirit like the loss of a loved one.

Martha’s just lost her husband. But life doesn’t wait for gaping hearts to heal. There’s bills to pay, a house to clean. And, thankfully, her son Sean. Her stalwart against the storm.

Then tragedy strikes again — Sean sprawled out, motionless, beneath his favorite climbing tree.

Everything happening in a blur.

Martha pacing hospital corridors, Doctors offering condolences, her only son slumped in a wheelchair.

How could this be? Her son, lifeless, unrecognizable. Her Sean could run and smile and light up a room. Her Sean didn’t need food shoveled in his mouth. No, this thing is not her son.

But the Doctors won’t listen. They tell her she’s not thinking clearly. She needs rest, and pills.

If only she could stop the squirming thoughts in her brain. Then a solution arrives. In the form of a mysterious woman, dressed in all black, with a very important message:

            THE DARK LADY
     (loud whisper)
It is not your child. Kill it.

Is this a case of a fragile mind broken? Or are there forces at work beyond our comprehension? Time is running out for Martha to make a decision. One that could have devastating consequences for everyone involved.

Production: One adult female, one male child, and a few extras. A house, a front/back yard, a sidewalk, maybe one other interior location.

About the writer: Glenn Doyle is a 27 year old from Dublin, Ireland. He grew up writing short stories and studied film at Dublin Business School. To date, he’s written close to twenty shorts and one feature. You can check out his IMDB page here.

About the reviewer: James Barron is a former law student turned screenwriter who loves to write comedy along with the occasional horror/thriller. Check out his work at JBarronScripts.com

Read Not My Son (8 page short horror in pdf format)

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This screenplay may not be used or reproduced for any purpose including educational purposes without the expressed written permission of the author.

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January 19, 2018

    Meeting The Other Woman by David Lambertson (eldave1) writing as Anonymous

    A wife discovers something important about her own life when she finally meets the other woman. 12 pages
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