To kill or not to kill is the question...

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  • To kill or not to kill is the question...

    Hello everybody
    It's my first time here at Done Deal and I have a question that I know you can help me with. I'm writing a horror script and there is a scene where a demon kills a rat but the rat comes back to life as an undead killer rat.
    I read this :
    "Horror and Thriller Don't's
    Don't kill an animal on screen. It just isn't done, not by good directors. It's a cheap and repulsive way to get an emotional effect. I will generally stop reading a screenplay where this happens."
    Now my question: Is it all right to kill the rat in that context or should I avoid that?

    Thank you.

  • #2
    imho

    do it.

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    • #3
      Re: imho

      Kill the sumbitch!

      rats are okay, cats, dogs [unless rabid] sheep, squirrels etc are no no's

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      • #4
        mind you, the squirrel killing sequence in Dennis Potter's "Blue Remembered Hills" made for some truly compelling drama; but probably only Dave, Jake and the older Brits here have ever seen it as it was a tv piece.

        and it wasn't a genre horror, or thriller either.

        great stuff though!

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        • #5
          To kill or not to kill is the question...

          Granted Kilty, Dennis potter can gwet away with slaughtering squirrels. Those 'Kids' were evil little fvckers

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          • #6
            Those 'Kids' were evil little fvckers
            :rollin :rollin

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            • #7
              Yup, I saw it when it was first on TV in the UK. Helen Mirren played the little girl, right?:smokin

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              • #8
                Trust you to remember Helen Mirren the best. :lol

                Colin Welland , screenwriter of CHARIOTS OF FIRE (I know you already know this, Jake, but others here won't), was in the cast, and so was Michael Elphick, who played Jake the Poacher in WITHNAIL AND I.

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                • #9
                  You don't have to necessarily show the animal getting killed. That wouldn't stay in the script either way.

                  Butterfly Effect killed the dog in the bag and had great emotional conflict with the characters and the audience.

                  Another reason is it shows back story. If a serial killer is flashed back to as a child and the child began his torturous nature with animals. We don't need to see this to get the information across to the reader. It's not unusual for killers to start their psychological profile in this manner.

                  I say put it in but have squeaks, and blood on a knife, or whatever. But don't show it on screen. It's funny. You can do people. Just not animals.

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                  • #10
                    If he has to die to be reborn then kill the bastard.

                    And remember in Hollywood, nobody knows nothing.

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                    • #11
                      Didn't they eat rats or something in 'interview with a vampire' can't remember if it was actually shown.

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                      • #12
                        I have a scene in which a lonely boy befriends a feral kitten. Another boy, his tormentor, later kills it - not on-screen - by hanging. The tormentor's father was a Japanese war criminal who had been hung by the Americans after WWII. The lonely boy's father had served on the tribunal that sentenced him. The manner in which the kitten is killed becomes a clue that later effects the final showdown.

                        Would this be acceptable or should I leave it out? If okay, can the dead kitten be shown so the method is clear? Or should I just have others discuss it?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Interview with a Vampire

                          They did kill rats onscreen in that.

                          As for after an offscreen killing, I personally was disturbed when the family dog's bloody head was dropped through the doggy door in "Fear".

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