Stuck on a bit of dialog



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  • #16
    Why not make the pivotal scene one of action, rather than one of dialogue?

    While the hero is passed out drunk, a couple of bounty hunters show up. The heroine engages the bounty hunters in gun battle and kills them. The hero vows to quit drinking, and not endanger his woman with a life crime any more.


    • #17
      No longer stuck, thanks

      Tent: I believe you are restating the problem I started with. My imagination went south.

      Kosk: Your points are valid, but I may have misled you. This story is a western in that it takes place in the west with gunfighters and all that stuff, but it is really a drama about a dying lonely man who lives recklessly making a sort of descent into "hell" if you will, becoming more and more violent. His lady companion had been born into Eurpopean aristocracy, but fate caused her to end up in America, orphaned at 16. Like many women of the day in that situation, she ended up a saloon prostitute. The scene I describe is important and I didn't like the way I handled it, but with all this help, I cannot fail!

      UniSol: Great idea, but won't fit my story which is a true one. Hey, remember in "High Noon" when the sheriff's devout Quaker wife ends up killing a man to save him? That is HEAVY stuff! Real drama in a cowboy movie.

      Bill M.


      • #18
        My input

        Remember the function of dialog is to expose character and of course move the plot forward. Look at your character of this guy carefully. I think the most interesting characters have CONTRADICITONS in them. It's very possible that somewhere in the script you have included some piece of action or dialog (even unwittingly) that points to this guys inner desire to do exactly what she says she wants him to do. Maybe she has seen this and can point it out to him.


        My other favorite in this situation is to focus on her character and have her use a very original METAPHOR to get her point across. Metaphors are not used enough and can really make it fun to watch the other character think about what is being said to him. People speak in metaphors all the time. The deeper and more tied to your story's plot and events, the better the metaphor.



        • #19
          Re: My input

          Thanks Peach.

          As I look back on this, I realize that what I was trying to do was come up with that zinger of a line that is really memorable. I think now that the scene moves well as a whole, so I rewrote the lines kind of blending in the suggestions here and I am done with it. At least until tomorrow. It's hard to call a script "finished", isn't it?

          Bill M.


          • #20
            Here's your line

            She pours the whiskey onto the floor.

            She: Let me ease your pain.

            Thank you. You can send a check to POBox 2072, CP, TX 78630. Just make it out to "Cash". Thankee kindly.

            Tips hat, walks into sunset, spurs jangling.

            Your pal,


            • #21
              Re: Here's your line

              Wow! You're Johnny Cash? The check is in the mail.

              BILL EM


              • #22
                what's up bill - a little help

                how bout' hardly any dialogue from the guy, just have him repeating his fatal flaw ON SCREEN and have the women speak as she is watching. . .

                She's watching him, and she realizes that he must change and through the visual we see his decision.

                if the dialogue is to painstaking to write because it is the cliche of the world, don't do it. Put the words in her mouth and the camera shot on the guy making decisions. That would be powerful. also streamline a thread earlier in the movie that helps strenghten this scene, therefore giving your actor a strong moment of dialogue that links the scenes to one another without him having to say squat.

                Dialogue is all in the set up.



                • #23

                  The liqour's not your life, the guns aren't your life, those things take lives . . . I'm your life. . .

                  a long stare, he does a shot puts his gun down and whamo you got the scene.


                  • #24
                    Less is more.

                    She pours out the liquor. (ACTION, NOT WORDS)

                    She says "Let me ease your pain."

                    And everything else is implied from that. He won't need his guns, he won't need his liquor, he won't need to blah blah blah because of blah blah blah and even if blah blah blah.

                    And goody goody, we don't get a cliched lecture on the evils of the world.

                    Now...whether he actually LETS her ease his pain...

                    Your pal,