An excerpt from my script review for Ghost in the Shell which will be available 04/03/17:
2.) Plot Stability
Being perfectly blunt, I fell asleep 3 times while reading this…in the middle of the day.
Part of that could have been that the previous day I read a script by our very own Cap’n (for something we will announce shortly), and maybe my body isn’t used to reading back to back script days, but I don’t think that’s it.
All the “good parts” seemed to be there. Action. Sci-fi. Futuristic shit.
Overall it just lacked a sense of urgency…
Until about page 60, none of it had me flipping pages to see what would happen next.
And there was cool stuff in those early parts, like how Maddy became an actual ghost in the shell. Fast forward to her as a super soldier though, doing things we’ve seen before, and it certainly wasn’t enough to keep me awake.
Here the Puppet Master hints to Maddy that she’s not who her bosses are telling her she is. Since she’s the recipient of frequent “software updates” it’s plausible because she’s not exactly super trusting of her makers anyway.
Now THIS got me to finish the script. I wanted to know WHO was messing with her. Puppet Master? Ouelet? Anyone on her team?
I wanted to know WHAT really happened. Terrorist attack? Plane crash? Car crash?
This is good, and you need to inject this sort of mystery into your own script, while also forcing your characters to solve it against a ticking clock of some sort.
As they rush towards discoveries, so too do we rush through the pages wanting to help them.
Action for action’s sake isn’t enough, just as cool visuals aren’t enough to make a plot successful.
(I mention that because this script felt like this futuristic version of Hong Kong would be visually overbearing.)
In the end, this plot, and its twists worked. I was satisfied, even if it did take me nodding off three separate times to get there.
This begs the question, “Does your script take too long to get going?”
Are people losing interest too early? Is the action/visuals stuff we’ve seen before, leading to yawns from your audience?
You better hope not.
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