The Judges: Week 17

In 2011, each week 10 judges will review two short synopses from films that are currently in development.

The objective is to all (that includes us judges) learn from the exercise.

Please comment on our comments!

Creative Commons License photo credit: swanksalot

If you have an opinion on any of these synopses or the feedback from the judges, please share it with us in the comments below.

Please keep the discussion constructive. Even if your first instinct may be subjective, try to give us as objective a reply as possible.

SAVE YOUR LEGS!


“Edward ‘Teddy’ Brown lives for his suburban cricket club and his two best friends, Rick and Stavros. But when he realises that his beloved teammates are moving on and growing up, he’s forced to remind them of just how good cricket can be.”

The judges’ votes:


Do you want to see this film?

Yes: 20% – No: 80% – Not sure: 0%

Would Australians want to see it?

Yes: 20% – No: 10% – Not sure: 70%

Would it work in rest of the world?

Yes: 10% – No: 70% – Not sure: 20%

The judges’ verdict:


Margaret: How does he remind them? This sounds like a comedy about a fanatic, so one would assume he takes some extreme measures and tries a few zany stunts to achieve his goal. The synopsis should tell us what kind of ride this movie is going to take the audience on.

This sounds like a comedy about a fanatic

Nina: I am not sure what this film aspires to be, a comedy or drama. In either case, taking the synopsis at face value, the inciting incident, goal and stakes, are too low to capture and sustain the interest of an audience. However, if the central themes are abandonment and transition to adult life, then men’s relationships with each other through sport could form an effective vehicle. The writer should make this clear if this is in fact the case.

I am not sure what this film aspires to be, a comedy or drama.

Adrian: Maybe the logline is poorly worded, but it seems to me to be only an excuse for cricketing in-jokes and references. Are his friends cricket fans as well? I imagine that they would be as they hang out at the cricket club together. Why then would they need any reminding about the merits of the game of cricket? It would be a better story if it is based around the cricket club, the people around the place and the friendships forged, which are what the friends will be leaving behind when they move on.


THE TURNING


“Seventeen extraordinary Australian directors respond to the hauntingly beautiful collection of short stories by Tim Winton. Spanning 30 years, The Turning’s overlapping stories of second thoughts and mid-life regret are set in the brooding small-town world of coastal Western Australia.”

The judges’ votes:


Do you want to see this film?

Yes: 40% – No:  60% – Not sure:  0%

Would Australians want to see it?

Yes: 20% – No:  20% – Not sure:  60%

Would it work in rest of the world?

Yes:  0% – No:  60% – Not sure:  40%

The judges’ verdict:


Robin: What have the directors got to do with anything? Is there17 short films spread over 30 years? Even at 10 minutes each, it can’t do justice to short stories and would seem very long for a film. I don’t like episodic films spanning a long period.

it is a series of subplots stretched out to a feature length.

Steven: This concept is not a true feature film, Instead, it is a series of subplots stretched out to a feature length. Having the small town in common is not enough to make the whole thing taut enough to engage a paying viewer. Instead, this concept should have one key character taken from this town and the story of that character should be the backbone basis of the film. In particular, the chosen character should be facing some life-changing (if not life-threatening) challenge that he or she can not avoid, but can not clearly overcome as well.

Portmanteau films are hard to break out of the arthouse (but if you cast it right).

Dan: Portmanteau films are hard to break out of the arthouse (but if you cast it right). Winton is one of the most cinematic of modern Australian authors and I see real potential here – a kind of summing-up of what being an Australian means. I’d go and I’m a New Zealander. Title’s a bit weak but otherwise it’s a good, efficient logline.



The Judges (click for details)



So what is your verdict? Would you want to see these films? Why (not)? Did the judges get it right? How would you improve the synopses/loglines and what do you feel might improve the stories behind them?

Please give us your opinion in the comments at the bottom of this page.


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Adrian Kok

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