Extended phone consultation until you are complete
The Analysis expands the writer’s perspective on the story, especially if s/he may sense that something isn’t working but can’t see the forest for the trees. It assists the writer in understanding current script-writing standards in today’s movie industry. It also provides a great deal of knowledge specifically applied to your story that can’t be found in books and seminars.
John reads the script 3 times, dives deep into the crevices of your story and takes detailed page notes. Then, he breaks down the global notes into specific sections titled as follows:
1 — OVERVIEW – A summary of impressions of the strong points of the writer and the script. The commercial and artistic merits of the script in general are addressed as well. Then, there is an overview of suggestions for discussion that will be covered in the critique.
2 — GENRE (TONE) – Type of movie and explanation if the story ventures outside of the tonal environment that is set up. Hybrid genre mix is one thing; aberrant tone is another.
3 — THEME (INNER EMOTIONAL JOURNEY) – The abstract ideas that permeate the story. The underlying universal value (moral) implied by the story, usually through the main character’s internal journey, which unfolds as a result of the inner conflict provoked by the external quest. The resolution of the inner struggle within a philosophical, political, or social framework implies theme. Yes, even silly comedies need one of these. It’s what makes the story worth telling. Otherwise, it’s just a mindless series of events.
4 — PLOT (OUTER PHYSICAL JOURNEY) – Addresses the principles of tying theme to plot in an organic manner that implies the theme without blatantly stating it. These principles are applied specifically to your story and characters. The subjective part of your script is broken down and the elements are discussed with an eye toward story cohesion.
5 — STRUCTURAL BREAKDOWN – Detailed comments on the inner design of the story, pacing of the plot, relationship of the subplot to the main plot thematically, and the proper order of structural steps that the protagonist should be taking in his/her transformation while advancing the conflict toward the plot’s resolution. (Notice how all these elements of plot, theme, structure, and character unite in an intricate relationship with each other.)
6 — CHARACTER – Observations on how well-defined they are regarding needs, wants, motivations, flaws, ghosts, and character traits. Do they act and speak in keeping with their intentions, drives, and motivations? Are they sufficiently different from each other?
7 — DIALOGUE – Does it match the character’s semantic universe? Does it move the story and/or character forward? Does it reflect the character’s needs within that situation? Is it really the character speaking, or the writer? Does it imply character motive, or does it bang the audience on the nose?
8 — WRITING STYLE + JOHN'S BOOK ON SCREENWRITING STYLE – Once upon a time, I was a lonely voice screaming in the wilderness about inadequate writing style – poor grammar, punctuation, spelling, passive verbs, non-dramatic description, telling without showing, etc. It seems that I’ve been heard. Now, others are teaching this and writing books on it. Why? A screenplay is more than a mere blueprint. It must evoke emotion and passion without distraction. The writing requires a certain kind of immediacy in its expression. The writing should be efficient to make the mind and eye of the reader zoom down the page. I used to write all my suggestions out. Now, I’ll just send you my book on Screenwriting Style for free along with your written In-Depth Analysis, which has all this info spelled out and suggestions on how to edit your script.
9 — FORMAT (CURRENT INDUSTRY STANDARD) – Is the screenplay formatted according to current industry standards? I’ll mark improper or antiquated formatting and refer you to my CRAFT NOTES page.
Your script needs to be in New Courier 12-point type with margins of one inch at top (page # as a header), bottom, and right side at one inch, and left side at 1.5 inches. Do not cheat the script with the software. That means there are 57 lines per page. Plus, all description paragraphs need to be no more than 4 lines, and preferably less.
Mailing info below, or we can accept the script by email in Movie Magic Screenwriter, Final Draft, Word, RTF, or PDF.
25-30 pages + extended phone consultation until you are complete