An excerpt from our guest script review for The Gambler which will be available 12/28/14:
Marketability of Idea
As a re-make of the 1974 film of the same name, there is some “brand awareness” coming into this. Older moviegoers may remember James Caan’s critically lauded performance from years past. Nevertheless, adult dramas in this day and age are unlikely to be as popularly viewed and talked about as they were in the 70s. Thus, it is in some ways surprising that the film was re-made, especially by a major studio like Paramount.
The plot progresses logically and as a result the story becomes darker and darker as our protagonist Jim’s prospects worsen. There are no surprising or implausible structural shifts and the efficient and relatively quick pacing successfully increase the tension (and to some degree, stakes) throughout the script. One can also argue that in the mold of the classic studio film it was based on the story is more or less forthright with no intricate twists and turns. In other words, we know that Jim is an incredibly self-destructive person and is going to gamble all he has until he loses everything (including very possibly, his life). This straightforward structure matches the nature of the story, so screenwriter William Monahan (“The Departed”) does a solid job here.
Want the full review by cityworshipper? Follow this link to the Gambler Script Analysis.
And be sure to check out our Notes Service, where I give my detailed thoughts and suggestions on your script.