An excerpt from Reals’ script review for Power of the Dog which will be available 03/14/22:
What Needs Work
The Marriage – Strangely enough, George and Rose happen to get married OFF-SCREEN and kind of out-of-nowhere. On Page 31 George just tells Phil, “Oh, yeah. We got married Sunday.”
I never got a real sense of how time was progressing at this point in the narrative. We go from George getting back from Beech at night when it is snowing to what I assume is the next day where Phil is going about his chores.
Then, we get a scene with Phil and George’s parents, and then we are back to the ranch where George tells Phil that he and Rose are now married.
It was confusing and I had to go back and reread several times to make sure I didn’t miss something.
Typos Galore – Lots of grammar mistakes in particular, which seems strange for an Oscar-nominated script.
Upon giving this another look, part of me wonders if the author just copied and pasted text from the novel into Final Draft and did a rushed polish before sending it off.
Telling Us How Characters Feel – Once again, in my Moonfall review I mentioned a note I got on a recent script which I think is very applicable here:
I described how a character felt after being told off by another character, and the reader commented:
Show us that information, don’t tell us!
The same reader should have taken a look at this script before it was sent out, as it was littered with descriptions of how characters were feeling.
For example, on Page 17:
Phil takes a breath he feels strangely lonely.
And, for bonus points, this entry also has a grammar mistake included at no extra charge!
The Whole Dinner Scene – I suppose this was to increase tension in the story, as Grandpa, Grandma, the Governor and his wife are all coming to the ranch for dinner.
I’ve got to be honest – I just didn’t care.
And it didn’t help that this goes from Page 45 – Page 56. It was just too long of a stretch where nothing really happened to a bunch of characters I didn’t care about.
Pacing – This is a poorly paced story. Things take far too long to happen and there is so much filler that you can skim large sections of this script and not miss much of anything.
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