Wednesday, 3 February 2016

SCRIPT TO SCREEN: Online Greenlight Review - Part 2


  1. OGR 03/02/2016

    Hey Tom,

    Okay - lots to enjoy here - and one quibble: in your script, you have it so that the ballerina version is the character who winds up the music box... But isn't the ghost girl 'powerless' in this scenario, as she's already passed (or rather the alive girl is on the threshold of dying)? In story terms, this moment is about the little girl 'deciding' to live as opposed to surrendering to death (i.e. watching inertly as the music 'winds down'). Doesn't it make more sense that the alive girl makes the connection, so she's the one who decides to wind the key (i.e. decides to fight to live)? You could have it that the ballerina girl (who is truly the ghost of the girl's future that will never be) starts to fade into shadow as the box winds down; filmically, it could be a series of intercuts that go like this: alive girl looking at ghost girl; ghost girl is looking at the music box sadly; cut to music box ballerina slowing; cut back to ghost girl, who is now a little further away from the alive girl, a bit more in the shadow of the room; cut to alive girl's face, showing confusion; she looks at the music box ballerina: cut to ballerina slowing: cut to ghost girl, now a little further away and greyed with shadow; cut to alive girl; we see her thinking, we see her understanding something: cut to music box ballerina (it's nearly stopped turning!); Cut to alive girl - she looks for the ghost girl: the ghost girl is gone! The music box ballerina comes to a halt... the alive girl snatches the key, winds it, winds it, winds it - she's awake (she's alive!).

    For me, it doesn't make narrative sense that the ghost version makes the decision, as it's actually about the alive girl 'choosing life' - so the decision should be seen as hers.

    One further tweak; it might make sense that the hospital room in which she awakens at the end of the film is not the sombre twilight world that we've been introduced to originally, but a slightly more 'upbeat' version of the room we saw; it can be subtle, but maybe consider the way in which dialling up the saturation a little might get us thinking that she's 'made it back'.

    In general terms, your storyboard communicates nicely (though in line with suggestion above, I think you could crank more tension out of the 'slowing ballerina' sequence, by intercutting between your characters, and the music box ballerina), and your character design sits nicely with your story and its tone. I think you're pretty much there, Tom - so well done for pushing this project during the first few weeks; you can really see those efforts paying off now.

  2. oh yeah - and maybe think about your proposed title: 'Revival' gives your ending away a bit, doesn't it? It cues us in to the meaning of the film before we get there. I think something as simple as 'The Music Box' would do nicely; it's evocative, but opaque in terms of what kind of story we're going to watch.