An excerpt from my script review for The Green Knight which will be available 08/02/21:
4.) Dialogue and Description
No notes on the dialogue, because there wasn’t much of it.
When the boss asked me about this script, I explained to her it was an elaborate series of shots.
Some cool. Some spooky. A few even memorable.
Very little plot linking them all together however.
For instance on page 25, we’re given a page of shots of Gawain’s mother just…doing stuff.
It’s supposed to show us the weight of Gawain’s lack of dedication to his quest, and how that’s affecting her.
First, stop living vicariously through your child.
Second, how do you show:
Something weighs heavy on her heart.
That’s an unfilmable, which will be hard to convey onscreen.
(Especially in a period piece where everyone and their brother will be trying to look stoic, some failing and coming across as constipated.)
Don’t get me wrong, some of the visuals once Gawain sets out are kind of cool, but him just riding a horse and occasionally bumping into things isn’t a story.
And when he does bump into things, we’re rushed through them because…selfish!
This script read more like a novel, and the trick with unfilmables is they can sometimes work when implemented properly.
Instead of long winded “directing” via the description, a single unfilmable line conveys to the actor what the character should be feeling or reacting.
A few minor points…
Page 43 – We’re given Gawain following a band of giants across a bog, which must have been used as inspiration by J.R.R. Tolkien for the Dead Marshes.
Page 49 – Not quite sure how the photograph album worked. Maybe this would work better onscreen, but this bit jerked me out of the story, asking myself, “Is this a modern day interpretation I missed like Leo’s Romeo and Juliet?”
Page 60 – Um…what did Gawain do with the girdle? Like jerk off on it?
Please stay away from shit like this last example. Try to sound too clever with sexual topics/situations and you might accidentally make your hero out to be a pervert.
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