Screenwriting Workshop 1 – First Draft Feedback

Screenplay here:  THE CLEANER [1st Draft]

After having the first draft of my screenplay read out at the first workshop session, I was overall very pleased with the feedback I received from the group.

The general consensus was that my script had a good twist at the end and that the black comic nature of the dialogue was entertaining, but that it also had similarities to Pulp Fiction. This was something I knew would be pointed out very early on as Pulp Fiction did serve as an inspiration when writing this screenplay, but the truth of the matter is that my main inspiration for this film was from an episode of The Sopranos where Tony Soprano helps clean up the murder of Richie Aprile after his sister Janice kills him – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3X6AaNbZZfQ

It’s fair to say that I am influenced by Tarantino’s writing style so I wanted to write something that would allow me to emulate that style in my own way. Throughout further drafts of this screenplay however, I guess I will try to differentiate my screenplay as much as I can from Pulp Fiction.

A few points I received to consider was that the death of my main character at the end, being strangled with a belt, was too messy and that it would have been better if my main character’s neck was snapped.

To be fair, the inspiration for my character being strangled by a belt was from The Godfather in which Luca Brasi is strangled in a bar by a piece of string:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GqYYlqkPdM

There was also an issue with the phone call one of my characters, Fat Charlie, makes toward the end of the film in which there was divided opinion on whether it should be more cryptic or not. My intention with that was to make it that the audience knows what’s going to happen to the main character Dominic from what they hear in that phone conversation, creating a sense of objectivity in that they are expecting Dominic’s murder to happen. It was never my intention to make the ending a “twist ending” per se. I guess with this information on board, I will perhaps try to tweak the dialogue during that sequence.

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Filed under MDA2100 - Screenwriting: The Short Film

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