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Old 01-10-2017, 10:20 PM   #1
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How do you know if a script is good if there is no them or message behind the story?

I'm going through short film scripts to see which one I would like to direct the most. However, I find that they just don't have any real themes to tackle. They are just sort of stories that can grab your attention for the short time span, but it feels like they are disposable, like one ear and out the other.

Some movies are kind of like that. For example the movies Alien (1979), or The Silence of the Lambs (1991), don't really tackle any deep themes per say, and just want to deliver simple thrills, debatably.

What do you think? The thing is, when it comes to a script like that, it's hard to tell if it's good, especially on paper.
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Old 01-10-2017, 10:49 PM   #2
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Silence of the Lambs has a ton of depth, tons of symbolism and was based on a bestseller novel.

Multiple themes as well.
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Old 01-10-2017, 11:18 PM   #3
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Disposable stories like alien and silence of the lambs

Oh H44. You're incorrigible
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Old 01-10-2017, 11:26 PM   #4
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Ryan, you saw "Growing is Forever" as just some girl "describing what the plants are doing." In fact, that short was a narrated poem that told a story of creation. It told how the trees first sprouted and how other vegetation followed. Then it personified the trees and told of their conversations, their family/community, and their adapting to the changing world around them. It was very abstract. The images were shot and edited to add a visual concept to the spoken word.

To assert that Alien and Silence of the Lambs were just for thrills and had no themes, or were just disposable stories with no purpose, is absurd.

This is why I gave you the poetry suggestion. Which at this point you should just take as homework and go out and do.

Record a poem from the website I linked in the other thread, then shoot and edit images to that recording, to visualize the poem. Add some sound design... music, nats, SFX, whatever you need to complete the image. It'll be a good exercise for you, because every poem tells a story and gives you plenty of room for visual interpretation. And I'm not talking about literal interpretation. Read through the poem several times and just write down whatever images come to mind. Then start organizing those "images" into a storyboard. Then shoot.

Seriously. Do this. And stop waffling on everything else, especially your short scripts. We all know that you're not going to get those done anytime soon. Do the poem exercise. Bring the finished product back here. Set all your other threads and conversations aside until you're done.

Last edited by AcousticAl; 01-10-2017 at 11:31 PM.
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Old 01-11-2017, 12:01 AM   #5
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Yeah okay, I should do the poem maybe. I got caught up looking at some scripts to do...
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Old 01-11-2017, 12:28 AM   #6
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Alien (1979), or The Silence of the Lambs (1991), don't really tackle any deep themes
lol... and Trumps Golden Foot in Mouth Award goes to....
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Old 01-13-2017, 08:57 AM   #7
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Having done some work as a reader, writers often are too blunt with their themes and sometimes the subtle ones need to be up on screen for you to see them.

The Alien series does have some deeper themes and they more into that in the latter films - debates on morals, ethics, cloning, arguably race in the fourth Alien film (look at the white, human-faced Alien) and you an even get into psychoanalysis with that fourth film.

I don't personally believe a script can be any more than say a 6/10 if there is no theme to it, but then again all some people want is a decent story to lose themselves in.
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