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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.

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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.

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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
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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.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Love Glow – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer


Love Glow (5 pages in pdf format) Marnie Mitchell Lister

Weird things can happen when love is involved.

Love is a powerful motivator – whether it pertains to friends, family or significant others. What people will not do for loved ones is a short list; and it has the possibility of becoming even shorter, when that bond is tested ‘til it breaks.

In Marnie Mitchell Lister’s short script Love Glow, Rick Turner is your typical easy going twenty-something guy who is focused on one typical thing: his dream girl. As far as he’s concerned, Laura’s the best of the best – and deserves nothing but the best in return. Expensive mansions, luxury cars, unlimited shopping sprees – the sky’s the limit, he thinks.

There’s just one problem…Rick is broke. Painfully so. There isn’t even a glimmer of available funds in his bank account, and Rick can feel his dream life fizzling out before it becomes reality.

So Rick does what any “sane” person would do: he checks himself into an experimental medical trial for a few weeks, one that promises to fund his new life. Success! Or so it seems.

Weeks later, Ricks completes the trial, collects his check, and enlists the help of best friend Matt to give him a ride back home. But there’s one thing he’s neglected – side effects.

Despite giving Matt a “glowing” review of his experience, Rick quickly finds his body going wrong. Coughing fits. Luminescent sweating spells. And that’s when Rick’s ears start to melt.

Will Rick turn into a radioactive pile of goo? Will his dream girl find his ever worsening body desirable? And will Matt ever be able to clean his car?

Love Glow isn’t your typical love story. Instead, it’s a hybrid of the best kind – balancing light humor with the universal theme of love, and a bit of over-the-top sci-fi flare. If you like your SF mixed with comedy, snag this one before it melts away!

Budget: Mid-range. Yes, there’s a bit of FX involved. But it’s worth it for the festival raves (and laughs)!

About the writer: Marnie Mitchell Lister is an award winning writer AND photographer, her website is available at BrainFluffs.com. Marnie’s had multiple shorts produced and placed Semi-final with her features in BlueCat.

Read Love Glow (5 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: Karis Watie is a writer from Texas who got accidentally transplanted in New England. She is coping by eating dangerous amounts of doughnuts and closely studying television shows that she hopes to one day emulate as a screenwriter. She is pursuing a second bachelor’s degree while not on the couch, to help her dream along. If you want to talk television or drop Karis a spoiler or two, she’s at watiekaris at yahoo & @kn_watie on Twitter.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Changer – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author KP Mackie

The Changer by David Troop

Two bickering police detectives must find a way to capture the world’s most elusive criminal.

Some stories are tons of fun. Isn’t that what we go to movies for?

Angst, terror and philosophical symbolism isn’t needed for every film we see. Sometimes simple is the best. “Entertainment for the sake of entertainment” is a spectacular experience when done right. Especially when the jokes are primed to fly.

In his latest short The Changer, master storyteller David Troop makes a fun story live and breathe; resulting in chuckles galore!

Yet, for cops Kennedy and Harris, the events of The Changer are pure business. As often happens with film law enforcement types, these partners are different as two guys could be:

Kennedy’s a Caucasian veteran cop in his 40s – lacking any form of fashion sense. Of course, film-logic requires him paired with African-American Officer Harris. Ten years Kennedy’s junior, Harris is a “poster boy for Reebok.” Together, the two are on the job, seeking a mysterious master-of-disguise known simply as, “The Changer.

Tense and bickering from Page One, the couple track “the dude” to urban apartment 4D. With police badges on display, they bust down the door – only to find screaming hooker Petunia inside. Encouraged by the officer’s raised guns, Petunia points to the bathroom. Harris searches the area quickly, yet finds only – a cat inside.

Harris shrugs, turns his back. Allowing the Bizarre “Changer” to make his escape. Out the open bathroom window – down a rusty fire escape. Pretty soon, the chase is on (ala the Grand Budapest Hotel!).

In hot pursuit of a “tall figure in a trench coat”, the partners race through alleys, down gritty streets. Eventually, Harris corners the perp. (Kennedy joins the chase somewhat late… having stopped to “question” the hooker privately!). But soon, Kennedy and Harris have their man…

Still – given The Changer’s “special set of skills”, the question is… Do they have him cornered?

Really?

Tongue planted firmly in cheek, The Changer is a fun – and very funny – ride.

Think movies like Ghostbusters, Back to the Future, Police Academy, Naked Gun or Groundhog Day. If you’re a director who loves goofy comedy, then TC is your blockbuster. Set your humor on stun. And pull the cinematic wool over your audience’s tears-of-laughter-filled eyes!

Budget: Relatively low. Three talented male character actors (with good comedic timing) are required for the main roles. Plus a handful of extras. Settings include: Apartment interior rooms, stairway, streets, and an alley – all of which are easy to stage.

About the Writer: 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.

Read The Changer (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: California über reader/reviewer KP Mackie is working on a historical feature.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Good Sam – Short Script Review – Available for Production - post author Ingrid Short

Good Sam by Sylvia Dahlby

An old man encounters an alien in need of assistance.

Aloha! Looking for a script to knock out over a couple of weekends? You’ve found it with Good Sam.

Good ole’ Sam is heading home one night and happens across the wreckage of another vehicle. Being the Good Sam[aritan] that he is, he stops to lend a hand. The occupant of the vehicle do Sam a solid in return. Or does he/she/it?

Production: Pick up truck. Alien space craft. Two actors that look vaguely similar – one old and one young. Alien voice. Two locations – dirt road and spaceship interior. Slime. Colored lights. A fog machine would be really, really cool. You can F/X the shit out of this of you have the resources.

Budget: Micro to low

About the writer: I’m a one time advertising copywriter who has fallen in love with screenwriting. I’ve written a handful of features, one has been produced as a Role Playing Game (RPG) and made its debut at CarnageCon. I enjoy writing short scripts since it’s a fun exercise for sharpening my skills; so far one of my shorts has been produced as a student film project, and I welcome the opportunity to have more of my work produced via participation on SimplyScripts. Sylvia can be reached at sylviedahl (a) AOL.

Read Good Sam (2 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: Ingrid Short is the love child of Carolyn Keene and Franklin W. Dixon.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Imagination, Smagination – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author LC

Imagination, Smagination by Nolan Bryand

Little boys have crazy imaginations… Or do they?

The topic for today is Monsters. Mwa-ha-ha -haaaa!

In his inaugural address, F.D. Roosevelt famously paraphrased Francis Bacon’s line by saying: The only thing we have to fear… is fear itself.

I don’t know about you but I’ve always found cold comfort in that line… Fear itself is pretty darned scary.

Monsters, ghouls, devils, demons, the boogeyman – all strike fear into the most hardened of hearts and can turn even the most cast-iron of stomachs to jelly. From Ghoulies to Gremlins, to Chucky (Child’s Play) and The Babadoo – monsters not only have a long and illustrious history on film but they continue to fascinate, disgust, horrify, and if the writer is especially talented (like this one is) even make their audiences laugh.

Now cast your mind back to your five-year-old self lying in bed in the dark – your nightlight casting ominous shadows onto the walls, your super-hero bed-covers pulled up tightly around your chin, wide eyes darting back and forth into the foreboding darkness.

What was that?!

Did you hear that barely perceptible creak across the floorboard? Did you see that lightning-fast flash of movement just out of the corner of your eye? What about that inky black cavern that is your wardrobe with its door slightly ajar, or that cavernous space under your bed where all manner of dastardly things could be lying in wait, ready to pounce when you least expect it.

Ooh, it’s enough to give you the heebie-jeebies, make you crawl into the fetal position, yank those bed covers over your head while you mutter over and over and over again: not real, not real, not real, in a desperate attempt to prove to yourself that what you just heard, what you just saw, was all just the result of a bad dream or an overactive imagination.

But what if it wasn’t your imagination…?

As we open on Nolan Bryand’s, Imagination, Smagination, this is the very real dilemma facing five-year-old, Owen. He’s just run the five-metre dash down the hallway and into his parent’s bedroom. What he knows is: this is not his imagination in overdrive. There’s a monster in his closet, and he needs his dad to get rid of it! Actually, he’d prefer to sleep in his Mom and Dad’s room, where there is no monster, but they’re not having it. Big sigh. Thanks, Mom. Thanks, Dad.

The Monster in The Closet and The Monster Under The Bed are familiar tropes in horror fiction and filmmaking, but Nolan Bryand’s rendition is about to surprise, not only with its freshness and originality, but also with its perfectly timed comic-horror twists. That’s right, not one, but two. Just when you think the story’s done and dusted, Nolan expertly hits his audience with yet another comical twist in the final seconds of a denouement that will have you jumping in surprise and laughing out loud at the same time.

Suspense, comedy, acerbic wit, mixed with clever barbs aimed squarely at jaded grown-ups with their all too familiar rationalizing that ‘monsters don’t exist’, Imagination, Smagination is a finely orchestrated monster-lite tale that is sure to be a crowd pleaser for kids and adults alike.

Filmmakers: Now’s the time to banish your fears, scare up your own special brand of cinematic ‘smagination’ and take your best shot in the dark. Best not sleep on it though, cause this one’s gonna’ get snapped up fast.

Budget: Low. One location. Two adults, a plucky talented five year old, and a couple of ‘monsters’. A talent for gruesome make-up fx will also come in handy.

About the Writer Nolan Bryand: While completing a minor in film studies back in 2005, I took a keen interest in the screenwriting aspect. Acting and directing wasn’t for me. In 2015 I came back to writing as a way to spend some free time, and remembered how much I enjoyed it. Since revisiting my passion, I’ve optioned two short scripts, which were both read and picked up after being read on the SimplyScripts discussion board. It’s the actors and directors that really make a script come to life, but it’s the screenwriter that gets them there in the first place! And that’s what I love about screenwriting.

Read Imagination, Smagination (6 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: 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.

Friday, June 30, 2017

The L Equation – Short Script Review (Available for Production) - post author Guest Reviewer

The L Equation by Anthony Cawood

A talented mathematician slaves over an equation that could change the face of humanity, as her dedicated assistant struggles to tell her exactly how he feels. 

Love is never logical. But wouldn’t it be great to live in a world where relationships were easy? If you knew from the start a relationship was “meant to be”, heartache becomes a distant memory.

The L Equation certainly tests out this theory. Like ‘Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind’, The L Equation aims to cut the hassle out of dating, by building the perfect equation for love.

As the script opens, dedicated mathematician Samantha slaves away in her lab. Her ambition? To discover an algorithm for love – creating perfect couples: A + B. A world where happiness is guaranteed and finding ‘the one’ is a breeze – surely that would be a marvelous thing. But while Samantha’s drive keeps her focused on work, her besotted and loyal assistant Brendan wishes she would concentrate on him instead. She barely notices his existence… leaving Brendan feeling side-lined. And very, very hurt.

But what’s Samantha’s real motivation? Her purpose, her reason for everything? You guessed it: Brendan. After months of gruelling work, Samantha finally finds the code she needs. But it fails to give her the answer she desires in her heart. Will she abandon logic and give chemistry a chance? Crack L open, and give it a read… Maybe there’s a happy answer to the equation after all.

A charming script, The L Equation’s as easy as pie to shoot. There’s nothing technical to be found here. But acting and chemistry – just like X and Y – those are essential ingredients!

Budget/Cast — Low. Only 3 characters, a few simple props, a couple lab coats, and you’re set!

About the Writer – Anthony Cawood – I’m an award winning screenwriter from the UK with over 15 scripts produced, optioned and/or purchased. Outside of my screenwriting career, I’m also a published short story writer and movie reviewer. Links to my films and details of my scripts can be found at AnthonyCawood.co.uk

Read The L Equation (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 — Elaine Clayton — is a London-based screenwriter, who has written several well-received shorts and is currently working on her first feature length scripts. Comfortable in a broad range of genres, Elaine has an innate sense of structure and arc development. Contact her at Elaine_clayton (AT) Hotmail(.)co(.)uk

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