The Lightbringers
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Rating: 1.7/5 (3 votes cast)

The Lightbringers

Three European dissidents are caught up in a war between Heaven and Hell while investigating a mysterious cult in the US.

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  1. July 7, 2013, 4:33 am
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    This seems like a very broken up story, progressing very quickly but seeming to jump all over the place without enough description, was quite difficult to visualise at times. It seemed like the main three characters experienced almost the exact same things some of the time, whereas having more depth and descriptions in getting to know the characters and extending the story out would be better. Some interesting ideas though, and very fast paced!

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  2. July 5, 2013, 12:36 am
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    Concept: I think the concept here has strength – an international conspiracy, evil super-science, near-superhero soldier protagonists – there’s a huge number of great blockbusters made out of these ideas. However, the core ideas are let down by the script’s weaknesses and really, the only part of the concept that really sets it apart from other action thrillers is the direct intervention of God – which isn’t handled well enough to justify its inclusion.

    Story Structure: The story moves poorly. Events move too swiftly, with too little time or exposition. Set pieces occur with no build up and no introduction. Descriptive details are too sparse – for example, we are told that the lightbringers wear a “makeshift uniform” of some sort (p3) but the uniform is never described or explained in any other way. The narrative pacing is also uneven characters meet and fall in love in seconds, becoming devoted to each other at the drop of a hat.

    One last point to make is that many of the key story elements are not explained – why are the lightbringers a team, where do they get their resources or their moral authority from. I realise that this script is developed from the novel, but I think many of the key details from the novel are missing from the script. The three paragraph intro text is not enough to hook the audience to the film’s concept and the flashbacks feel too cold to give that to the confused audience later.

    Character: As a long time fan of Blakes 7, it’s great to see the series isn’t forgotten, but I think it’s a little too obscure for modern producers to use it for their character inspirations. The series is really sf niche nowadays.

    Too many character details come in strange ways – for example all three of the lightbringers give the girls they have just met their life histories in speeches that are so plainly infodumps for the audience’s benefit. It feels completely unnatural.

    Too many characters are introduced with full names and no other details – except perhaps hair colour, which reveals too little.

    Dialogue: Because the characters feel disconnected from the action of the story, much of the drama of their dialogue seems too extreme; it feels too much like cliche action movie dialogue. Almost all of it is “on the nose”.

    Grammar: I can’t really fault your basic grammar, but you do make a couple of “Screenwriting 101” errors. Descriptive paragraphs should never be longer than five lines. Longer paragraphs should be broken into smaller chunks for ease of reading. Camera angles, lighting direction and cuts should not ever be included in a spec script – these are issues for the director. Putting them in is considered rude and unprofessional. These two are industry standards for spec scripts.

    Budget: The only way to film this would be as a big budget blockbuster – anything else would sell the story short, I think.

    Overall: There’s no reason this story can’t be a movie, but this script is no where near ready. I think the best thing would be to find a screenwriting mentor, someone with professional experience ready to work with you through the story’s problems over a series of drafts to get it film worthy.

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  3. Profile photo of EugeneMcCrann
    July 1, 2013, 11:25 pm
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    Not trying to be overtly harsh, but just putting forth my honest critique and, most importantly, opinion of this screenplay.

    References to Blake’s 7 elude me, so perhaps seeing such late 70’s sci-fi entertainment would solidify some of this for a reader who comes in cold. Otherwise, this is nearly incoherent imo. I can only seeing this working as complete camp, which may be the point. Examples that place this into camp territory: declarations of love within minutes of characters meeting each other; conversations with Satan; backstabbings that chime with literal muhahaha’s; incredibly self-serious discussions about the destruction of the universe at the hands of mutant armies.

    Even if this sounds appealing, the story moves in huge chunks with almost no minor sequences to transition set pieces. With one sentence, we move from one enormous set to another enormous set, with little description of the location. Characters beckon about powers, like telefragging, and yet there’s nearly no foreshadowing of consequence when such a power is unveiled. Satan is eventually killed by a sacrificial gesture, but there’s no indication of Satan’s mortality via such an act. Characters blend together, dialogue comes from people who are never previously introduced, the entire ordeal feels like it could take 100 years or two days, and yet there’s no sense of clock of time based conditions on the characters.

    I do not understand. And it could be me. But, imo, this story could be extrapolated into a thousand page fantasy novel, and it’s being condensed into a 99 page script without a hint of self-awareness.

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