An excerpt from my script review for Ma which will be available 06/11/19:
2.) Plot Stability
Once we’re past the premise of the previous section, this story was a bit of a mess.
We get Sue Ann and the teens interacting, and it’s obviously weird, but it takes too long for anything structured to happen.
I use the word “structured” because (and SPOILER) Sue Ann at one point in the script is pissed and randomly runs over and kills a former classmate on page 69.
No set up, no consequences, just a hit and run that knocks the lady into the woods dead as shit.
Maybe her family just assumed she ran away. 40 something women often run away from home, I hear, at the drop of a hat…highly unstable creatures those.
Sarcasm aside, I kept waiting for a gradual build to Sue Ann’s insanity.
It never came. Just lame ass jump scare after jump scare.
I even wrote a note that all the “fun” from the trailer doesn’t seem to happen until the final 10 pages of a 119 page script.
That’s too long, but they sure as shit set up a sequel!
Instead of worrying about that they should have answered more questions…
Was Genie a burden on Sue Ann? Why didn’t she play into the teens more, aside from Maggie helping her up a ramp once?
What was the point behind Ma’s final photo with the group, aside from just a creepy visual?
How did all these fires keep happening to Sue Ann’s homes and no one’s investigating? People know that fire inspectors can generally tell when there’s two super duper bolt locks on doors, if fuel is used to start fires, etc. right?
And lastly, Sue Ann was a veterinary assistant. Where did she get all the cash for these booze, decorations, etc.?
Even if you’re writing a script with a lower budget and even if that’s a horror with a dedicated audience who are quicker to forgive than most…
Why not write the best, compelling story possible?
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