An excerpt from my script review for The Snowman which will be available 10/23/17:
4.) Dialogue and Description
Sometimes it’s fun how the script for a current week addresses issues mentioned in the previous week’s review.
For those of you following along at home, last week we took a look at The Triangle and one of my criticisms there was all the introductory dialogue.
“Hi so and so. Nice to meet you. I’m blah blah blah.”
This script not only entered late, but had an entertaining level of subtext that made the characters come alive.
Steps in yawning, and is presented with a PORTLY man smashing
holes in his walls with a hammer. Portly startles…then:
You got fungus.
A private matter, no?
Aspergillus I think. I knocked.
I didn’t answer.
The Super let me in.
What’s the Super’s name?
Peter. Tall guy.
Harry stares a moment longer. Itches his ass. Makes coffee.
You get any headaches? Fatigue?
For as long as I can remember.
Harry glances at his calendar. Marked on today’s date:
Television. Several hours blocked out. Strikes us as funny.
Beneath that, at 9 PM: Dinner. Rakel. Mia Francesca.
I bet its because I’m an Alcoholic.
Harry’s witty, and although he doesn’t like the intrusion, it’s justified so he allows it.
Even skinnier than you were on TV.
Flipped between you and Tresko.
They’re re-running his poker
Or lack thereof. Has he recovered?
He was 1 hand from 9 million bucks.
You haven’t called him have you?
You don’t have many friends.
Leave the ‘m’ off ‘many.’
A girl I work with had sex with the
guy who was sitting to your left.
Not an exclusive club. Handsome.
And smart and rich.
She was on a panel with him in Ann
Arbor. He invited her to his room.
She told him she’d had a
mastectomy. Step said he’d ‘think
about that’, went back to the bar.
Why are we talking about this?
Matt and I are getting married. In
Harry stunned. Eyes on the table. Waiter shows up with wine.
Just water…then her boyfriend is
gonna come touch it.
Pour anyway, just in case my
Fiancee doesn’t show.
Waiter pours, leaves. More silence.
What’s good about this bit, other than coming in mid-conversation, is that there’s a tension between Rakel and Harry.
A relationship we’re not yet aware of, and we continue reading because the information is presented in a fashion that makes us want to find out.
So we’re left playing catch up as they chat, and that’s good.
Harry points back to her smiling face in the photographs:
A telling hesitation from Ada. Harry moves an inch closer.
She has a good smile.
Wow. That’s pretty good!
(Because we’re learning Betty didn’t have a perfect home life without Ada coming right out and telling us.)
And there’s more throughout the script. Excellent example of writing entertaining dialogue that works.
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