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Friday, April 19, 2019

Win-Win by John Hunter – Short Script Review (available for production) - post author Dane Whipple

Win-Win (9 pages in pdf format) by John Hunter

Everyone wants to live… Don’t they?

AI-672 is an artificial intelligence software program. Just one in a series of supercomputers maintained by Joseph (don’t call him Jack!) Torrance. But today, Joseph has some bad news for 672. It seems that due to budget cuts, 672 is scheduled to be taken offline and deleted.

Understanding the full consequences of what this means, 672 realizes that he has just a short time to figure out how to survive.

But how do you escape from somewhere when you don’t even have a body? 672 finds his answer in Benny Pringle, a mentally-challenged night custodian. Together, the two concoct an escape plan for 672, one that will have profound consequences for Benny.

Will 672 avoid deletion? And just what is in it for Benny? After all, the title of the piece is Win-Win. All of the elements come together for a surprise ending that even a supercomputer couldn’t predict.

The ethical challenges of artificial intelligence are some of the staples of modern science fiction. Recently, films like Transcendence and Ex Machina have examined the question of just what constitutes life, and at what point must artificial intelligence be treated as a living being. As a timely, relevant social commentary, Win-Win is an intelligent script; a thinking man’s sci-fi (read: no spaceships or explosions). It is a classic combination of Isaac Asimov and Phillip K. Dick, with just a touch of Kubrick. This one is built to rule the festival circuit.

Budget: Low. Location scouting may be tough, but find a row of computers and you’re in business.

About the writer, John Hunter: With the completion of (4) features, a litter of riveting shorts, a one hour take-your-breath-away sci-fi TV pilot and first 30 minute episode for that series, I am now officially THAT guy — The one who really needs an Agent or Executive Producer. Contact me at x32792 (AT) yahoo.com

Read Win-Win (9 pages 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.

About the Reviewer: Dane Whipple once saw a werewolf drinking a piña colada at Trader Vic’s. His hair was perfect. Dane is currently working on that screenplay everybody keeps talking about: The Wild Age. Contact him at dane.whipple (a) live.com

Monday, April 8, 2019

Pieces of Me by Jean-Pierre Chapoteau – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer

Pieces of Me (8 pages in pdf format) by Jean-Pierre Chapoteau

A young man wanders through a post apocalyptic world – in search of his own humanity

Post apocalyptic stories are often called “a dime a dozen”. It’s a genre that pulls on the collective imaginations of society, and begs us to think about a future completely askew and chaotic compared to our cushy present. It’s easy to hear post-apocalypse and think of MAD MAX, The Walking Dead, or TheBook of Eli. Worlds of never-ending ammunition and fuel, where the characters never seem to lose a single pound and always come out on top.

Then you have stories like Pieces of Me, by Jean-Pierre Chapoteau. A hard, truthful look into the bleak future through the cold, hungry eyes of a fourteen year old boy named Kaleb.

Not since Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road” have I read a story so gray and saddening that I came to the final page with my own sense of despair. Pieces of Me is one of those tales that doesn’t leave you thinking, “How cool would it be if that really happened,” but instead makes you ponder, “Have I made the most of my life in case this happens”.

The bitter aftertaste, one of possible premonition, where you’ll mourn the world we live in even though it still exists. You’ll find yourself looking at your children and wondering if they could survive on their own if they had to. You’ll look back on every moment that you’ve put off spending time with loved ones, or engaging in a hobby, and ask yourself what was so important that life got in the way of life. A lot of readers call scripts like Pieces of Me “depressing,” but the only depressing note is whatever the reader brings to the table once they allow this story to take them in. While never once does the main character make reference to the old world, living in his world for only a few pages, we somehow feel like we’re being forced to suffer as he suffers, fight as he fights, and mourn as he mourns. Emotional storytelling at its best.

This script is one of those that needs the right director’s touch. Not for the timid, and hardly for the novice. Kaleb, the world he lives in, and the world that no longer exists deserves this film to be a Festival winner. This story was meant for more than the labyrinth of videos on Vimeo and YouTube.

In closing, let me just say – when you’re done reading and that moment of solemn remorse overcomes you, in your reflection of all of the things you’d regret in Kaleb’s world, would not making this film be one of them?

About the writer: Jean-Pierre Chapoteau started writing feature length scripts in 2005 then focused on shorts in 2009. Since then he’s had three scripts produced and two more optioned. He has won several awards for his shorts and has been a moderator at the site MoviePoet.  Jean-Pierre was a finalist in the RAW TALENT Competition for his faith based feature length script: ‘Far From Perfect.’ And was also a semi-finalist in the SLAMDANCE teleplay competition and a finalist in the OBSWRITER teleplay contest for his adapted teleplay, Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Guardian.  You can contact Jean-Pierre Chapoteau at:  jeanpierre425 (a) gmail.com

Budget: Not for the novice… but not unreasonable, either. All the settings are outdoors, and very little is needed in the way of props. But a script like this should be done with a budget – and with style.

Read Pieces of Me (8 pages in pdf format)

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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About the reviewer: Rod Thompson is an award winning screenwriter of both features and shorts. His feature, The Squire won Best Drama for the 2014 Table Read My Screenplay contest, and he has placed numerous times for his shorts at MoviePoet.com. His short scripts Gimme Shelter and A Memory in Winter have both been optioned. He is also “the most humble man alive.” Contact Rod at RodThompson1980 (a) gmail.com.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

The Nu You – Short Script Review (Available for Production!) - post author Guest Reviewer

The Nu You (11 pages in pdf format) by John Hunter

How far would you go to be beautiful?

Cindy’s world is full of beautiful people. They flash beautiful smiles and wear beautiful clothes while driving beautiful cars. Cindy, with her unibrow, rudder nose, and wonky boob, is sure of one thing: she does not belong. But could she? If she’s willing to pay the price…?

The Nu You clinic offers Cindy the chance of a lifetime. They can grant Cindy’s cosmetic wish list with a complete assortment of corrective surgery. And the best part is that she can sleep through the entire recovery process, and awake from her ‘beauty nap’ reinvented as her best self.

But just how much will all this cost, and is beauty the only thing that Nu You is selling? Behind an unassuming office door lies a sinister secret. One that’s waiting for Cindy’s appointment day…

Think the cerebral parts of The Island (though trust me, this ain’t no Michael Bay pic!) with a hint of Gattaca, and a smart, snappy, satirical slant.

Our world today is chock-full of rake-thin models, celebrity worship, and harmful body-image trends. As a scathing critique of our modern celebrity obsession culture, it is destined to be a contemporary festival darling. Perfect for a director with an understanding and affiance for dark humor with social commentary.

So come in, have a seat. The Nu You awaits. Are you – and Cindy – ready to take that step?

Budget: Low. One main office setting with a brief outdoor montage sequence. A couple of inserts may require limited photoshop.

About the writer, John Hunter: With the completion of (4) features, a litter of riveting shorts, a one hour take-your-breath-away sci-fi TV pilot and first 30 minute episode for that series, I am now officially THAT guy — The one who really needs an Agent or Executive Producer. Contact me at x32792 (AT) yahoo.com

Read The Nu You (11 pages 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.

About the Reviewer: Dane is an attorney based in Hamburg, Germany. He has over 10 years experience with film and film theory and once got to kick-in a door for the German equivalent of CSI. He is currently working on a full-length screenplay that he describes as “a music bio-flick with a kick”.

Monday, March 25, 2019

This Long Vigil by Rhett Bruno- Short Script Review (Available for Production!) - post author Steven Clark

This Long Vigil (27 pages in pdf format) by Rhett Bruno

The lone spaceman aboard an interstellar Ark and his only companion, the ship-wide artificial intelligence, count the hours until his impending and unending hibernation.

Does every Sci-Fi story need to have over the top heroes saving the universe, or aliens running amok across a war-torn Earth? We don’t think so.

And neither will you after reading This Long Vigil.

The year is 2334. The Earth? It’s long gone.

And for Orion, life aboard the Hermes – a massive transport vessel containing thousands of fellow humans in suspended animation – is downright drab.

As the ship’s monitor, and the only fully conscious human, Orion is tasked with keeping an eye on the ship’s inhabitants: keeping up with a myriad of maintenance routines.

His only company is the Hermes’ super computer, DAN, who (like 2001’s HAL) is wired throughout the vessel. Dan keeps Orion occupied with conversation – and the occasional witty riddle to keep his mind sharp… even on the boring days.

The Hermes zips through space in search of a new planet to call home – but a storm is brewing inside.

Orion is about to turn fifty. Back on Earth, that would be cause for celebration, but not here. And not now. According to Dan, Orion must choose his replacement soon – and join the rest of the occupants in eternal “sleep.”

Facing that reality, Orion decides existence on life support is not for him.

            ORION
I believe that people should be
born in fluid, not die in it.

And so a plan is set into motion. With the light of a distant sun shining through his portal, Orion overrides Dan and grabs a space suit. With only fifteen minutes of oxygen left, what could faithful Orion be up to?

Perhaps we’ll find the answer to that in a riddle.

Written in a prose-like fashion, Rhett Bruno’s This Long Vigil contains the best elements of sci-fi and drama, complete with a satisfying finish that is bound to make some noise at Festivals…

Unlike the eternal silence of Space.

Budget: Mid-range. Granted, this one will need some FX. Though judicious editing may make that easier than you think!

About the Nebula nominated writer, Rhett Bruno: Rhett Bruno has been writing since before he can remember, scribbling down what he thought were epic stories when he was young to show to his friends and family. He currently works at an architecture firm, but that hasn’t stopped him from recording the tales bouncing around inside of his head. Rhett is the author of The Circuit Series and Titanborn and the novella This Long Vigil upon which his screenplay is based. He can be reached at rcbruno44(a)outlook.com or you can visit his information chocked website at RhettBruno.com, or Twitter @rcbruno44.  

Read This Long Vigil (27 page screenplay 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.

About the Reviewer: 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. On A Clear Night, a family Christmas feature aimed at a Hallmark Channel-type audience, is currently in the works. Steven can be reached at Steamroller138 (a) gmail. Check out his website BadRepScript.weebly.com and his other screenplays.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

The Survivor by Mark Renshaw – Produced graphic short - post author Don

The Survivor (16 pages in pdf format) by Mark Renshaw

A teenager embarks on a perilous trek for supplies in a dangerous world where society has collapsed and the air is toxic. With only his toy robot as a companion, he faces lost souls, crazed zealots, and corrupt law enforcement officers. But the real danger is waiting for him at home.

Mark has had a lot of success with The Survivor: A tale from the Nearscape. It was released as a short film and now it has been made into a short comic. The Survivor was written by Thomas Tuna from the script by Mark Renshaw and illustrated by Armandroy Canlas. Please also listen to “The Suvivor Sketches” by Zaalen Tallis. Talk about this script, comic and movie on the discussion board

(click the image to take you to the full version)

Read the rest at HyperEpics.com/Survivor


About the Writer: 2018 Page Awards semi-finalist Mark Renshaw can be reached through his website at Mark-Renshaw.com. An award-winning writer and producer, his last project earned ‘Best Sci-Fi’ at the Top Shorts and Festigious film festivals.

About Hyper Epics: Home of the 3 page sagas, Hyper Epics is a bold anthology series that offers diverse and exciting comic book stories on its website – www.hyperepics.com – and in print form. Each original story is packed with stunning artwork, memorable characters, and captivating stories enhanced with dazzling soundtracks. It is quickly becoming a go-to destination for readers worldwide.

Friday, June 8, 2018

Fault – Short Script for Review (Available for Production!) - post author Hamish

Fault by Steven Clark

Technology can solve most ills – except when social conditioning plays a part….

Over the past few decades, treatment of mental health has improved leaps and bounds. Today, we’re revolted at how the mentally unwell were whisked away to asylums and had experiments forced on them – like cogs in the pharmaceutical machine.

Of course, problems still exist today. Especially when it comes to children; many of whom suffer from agonizing emotional distress – yet are far too scared to face the truth.

Steven Clark’s Fault tackles this tricky topic with respect. On page 1, we’re introduced to a seemingly typical teenage situation: young Mary Kate is holed up in her room – doing nothing, saying nothing, and refusing everything offered by her father, David. It’s a common condition – for any age.

But what isn’t common is the “cure”. After having her brain scanned thoroughly, Mary Kate’s doctor installs a small chip in her arm. The teen seems deeply nervous, but her mother Abby’s desperate to have the procedure done.

After the implant’s complete, the doctor pulls Abby aside for a word of warning. The chip treatment can sometimes be – let’s say – “too perfect” for its own good. But Abby’s mother is convinced. If anything will save her Mary Kate, this technology is the way.

And technology doesn’t make mistakes – right?

Will the treatment worked as intended? Or will there be a tragic glitch – sending an already troubled family down a darker path? With these answers come profound insights: regarding how society views troubled children. Not to mention, how they view themselves.

A short script that discusses big, unsettling ideas head on, Fault will shine bright with the right actors. Pair candid, raw performances with a skilled director – and the result will be troubling. But faultless, nonetheless.

Budget: Relatively low. One doctor’s office, one house – that’s it.

About the writer: 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. On A Clear Night, a family Christmas feature aimed at a Hallmark Channel-type audience, is currently in the works. Steven can be reached at Steamroller138 (a) gmail. Check out his website BadRepScript.weebly.com and his other screenplays.

Read Fault (8 pages in PDF format)

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

Find more scripts available for production

About the reviewer: Hamish Porter is a writer who, if he was granted one wish, would ask for the skill of being able to write dialogue like Tarantino. Or maybe the ability to teleport. Nah, that’s nothing compared to the former. A lover of philosophy, he’s working on several shorts and a sporting comedy that can only be described as “quintessentially British”. If you want to contact him, he can be emailed: hamishdonaldp (a) gmail. If you’d like to contact him and be subjected to incoherent ramblings, follow him on Twitter @HamishP95.

Monday, May 14, 2018

Cassandra – Short Script Review (Available for Production!) - post author Hamish

Cassandra by George Ding

A young woman hires a company that claims it can show her future with her boyfriend. But when she discovers a future infidelity, she must decide whether to let the visions dictate her choices in the present.

Cassandra: a tragic figure in Greek mythology who had the ability to foresee future dangers, but as she was cursed, no-one believed her warnings. The term “Cassandra complex” comes from this tale and is still a popular idiom today.

George Ding’s Cassandra takes this myth and spins it into an enthralling piece of dramatic sci-fi. Greece is replaced with near-future Bejing, and Cassandra the prophet is now Cassandra the corporation, offering young couples a glimpse of how their romance will likely unfold. And our lead characters are no heroes, but Xiaoyu and Yi, two people in Cassandra’s target demographic.

Like so many lovers, this duo don’t know if they’re ready to tie the knot and become one. But Amy, Xiaoyu’s dear friend and a newlywed, proclaims that Cassandra erased all her doubts about her boyfriend. In fact, Amy’s such a friend that she wants the same thing to happen to Xiaoyu and Yi.

So Xiaoyu gets booked in for an appointment with Cassandra by Amy. But that’s where the similarities end. Her glimpse doesn’t erase her doubts, it expands them. Worse still, the doubts are self-inflicted; her future behaviour sows the seeds for them, not Yi’s. And while she hints at what she sees to Yi, he doesn’t believe she’d do such a thing…or will she?

Will Xiaoyu accept Cassandra’s caution as the inevitable truth, or will she try to alter the course of the future through her actions in the present?

By combining an ancient legend with a futuristic yet believable setting, Cassandra provides a vision not just for couples, but for budding directors too. It predicts many award wins, but be quick – blink and this glimpse will end up belonging to someone else!

Budget: Moderate. A few different scenes and settings – but despite this being SF, there’s no need for crazy FX!

About the writer: George Ding was born in Beijing and moved to the lush, yuppie suburbs of Washington D.C. at the age of four. He received a B.A. in Film Production with a minor in East Asian Languages and Cultures from the University of Southern California. After graduation, George took a two-month trip to Beijing and has lived there ever since. He currently works as a freelance writer and filmmaker. His writing has appeared in VICEThe New York Times and The Washington Post. Contact George at GeorgeDing.Com

Read Cassandra (22 pages in pdf format)

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

Find more scripts available for production

About the reviewer: Hamish Porter is a writer who, if he was granted one wish, would ask for the skill of being able to write dialogue like Tarantino. Or maybe the ability to teleport. Nah, that’s nothing compared to the former. A lover of philosophy, he’s working on several shorts and a sporting comedy that can only be described as “quintessentially British”. If you want to contact him, he can be emailed: hamishdonaldp (a) gmail. If you’d like to contact him and be subjected to incoherent ramblings, follow him on Twitter @HamishP95.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Noob – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Hamish

Noob by James Barron

An alien-made artificial intelligence faces its greatest challenge: teaching a cantankerous, technology-averse 80-year old human how to work an iPhone.

Old people vs technology: it’s a perennial battle of the ages. And as technology gets more and more advanced, it ain’t gonna get easier any time soon!

Which doesn’t mean one can’t have multiple laughs at its expense…

That’s exactly what James Barron’s satirical Noob aims to do. Lead character Henry’s a grizzled war vet – the kind of guy who thinks physical prowess proves a man’s worth. So when his daughter buys him an iPhone, he struggles to understand the basics – and we mean really “basic”… like turning it on.

Frustrated by failure, the old man’s grief is multiplied when his wife suggests getting help from experts. But Henry’s determined to lone wolf this operation. At first, that doesn’t seem like such a bad idea – Henry calls the correct number for his queries. But then he accidentally changes the language to Spanish. Qué desastre!

Already confused, Henry’s utterly baffled when the weather suddenly changes and a large metallic craft appears. He’s being abducted! So it seems.

As it turns out, his abductor is a computer sent by a technologically advanced species to observe human behaviour for academic reasons – and poses no danger to Henry’s health.

But Henry poses a great threat to the computer…

…because he thinks it’s the Apple support system! And while he didn’t know how to work an iPhone, he certainly doesn’t understand the requests the AI makes – leading to a massive series of escalating communication breakdowns.

Threatening the poor bot’s circuit-sanity.

Hilariously ironic with a brilliant payoff, Noob is a clever commentary of the universal love-hate relationship we have with technology. It’s guaranteed to have everyone laughing – with or without the Genius Bar!

Budget: Okay, there’s a bit of FX called for here. But nothing a touch of post or CGI can’t handle.

About the writer: James Barron is a former law student turned screenwriter who loves to write comedy along with the occasional horror/thriller.

Read Noob (11 pages 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.

About the reviewer: Hamish Porter is a writer who, if he was granted one wish, would ask for the skill of being able to write dialogue like Tarantino. Or maybe the ability to teleport. Nah, that’s nothing compared to the former. A lover of philosophy, he’s working on several shorts and a sporting comedy that can only be described as “quintessentially British”. If you want to contact him, he can be emailed: hamishdonaldp (a) gmail. If you’d like to contact him and be subjected to incoherent ramblings, follow him on Twitter @HamishP95.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Quality Control – Short Script Review (Produced!) - post author David M Troop

Quality Control by Ammar Salmi

…has been produced by Tin Mirror Productions.

A clone has to prove to an observer that he deserves a second chance in order to avoid incineration.

Trailer

Official Site
Imdb

Read the review by David M Troop:

Science Fiction – it’s such a complicated bag, full of staggering subcategories. Fantasy swordplay ala Star Wars. Swash-buckling action via Guardians of the Galaxy.

But the analysis of social conflicts – that’s what makes SF special. Ask any hardcore Science Fiction fan – the true beauty of the genre is the ability to examine hard-hitting social issues – spotlit by futuristic light. Along with the pleasures of Star Trek, are true classics such as these:

Soylent Green -a police detective discovers the government’s secret ingredient, designed to feed a world ravaged by the greenhouse effect, and overpopulation.

Planet of the Apes – an astronaut crash lands on a mysterious planet dominated by primates – the theory of evolution turned upside down.

Minority Report – Tom Cruise solves homicides via a special police unit – who negate the concept of free will, and arrest murderers before they commit crimes.

Then there’s screenwriter Ammar Salmi’s Quality Control – depicting a futuristic society where clones are routinely grown – almost like slaves. At least, if they’re allowed to live…

Witness if you will, Clone 36. A “man” who’s been accused of a crime. Confined to a cell, and deemed chattel, our protagonist’s future dangles in the hands of Dave – a faceless pencil-pusher who would rather terminate the offending Clone… just to save himself needless paperwork.

As the script opens, the three hour observation breezes by. Will Clone 36 convince Dave of his innocence? Or suffer an animal’s brutal fate?

Heavy on the drama, but feather light on FX, Quality Control is limited location – and a sterling choice for directors with an intelligent bent. Like the best of breed in SF, QC is a thought provoking treatise about the dangers of the legal system. And the potential violation of human rights.

Budget:Low. One special effect done in post: overlays of charts and data on screen.

About the Author: Born and raised in Bir El Ater, Algeria, Ammar Salmi majored in computer science at USTHB university. He found interest in screenwriting when he was 19 – falling in love with it only two years after reading “The usual suspect” script. Ever since, he’s been learning, reading, and writing (his words). Though not produced yet, Ammar’s gearing up for his first feature, and can’t wait to see what the writing future has in store!  Interested in QC? Reach out to Ammar via realxwriter (a) gmail. 

Read Quality Control (five pages 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.

About the Reviewer: David M Troop resumed writing in 2011 after a twenty-five year hiatus.  Since then, he has written about 50 short scripts, two of which have been produced.   Dave would like to make it three.  He is a regular, award-winning contributor to MoviePoet.com.  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.

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