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The Judges: Week 18

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.

RING-IN


“The ‘story behind the story’ of the infamous 1984 Fine Cotton horse substitution scandal”

The judges’ votes:


Do you want to see this film?

Yes: 10% – No: 20% – Not sure: 70%

Would Australians want to see it?

Yes: 20% – No: 0% – Not sure: 80%

Would it work in rest of the world?

Yes: 0% – No: 40% – Not sure: 60 %

The judges’ verdict:


Jack: This is one of the great Australian racing stories and if done correctly could make a great film. The synopsis doesn’t tell us much, so anyone who doesn’t know the story would not be interested. A more gripping synopsis might mention some of the famous characters involved.

This is one of the great Australian racing stories and if done correctly could make a great film.

Robin: Even if a story is infamous (I’ve never heard of it) it has to work as a film. I’ve looked it up but still not sure I want to see it. It would depend on whose point of view that story is told from.

I’m not even sure what the genre is because historical fiction can be anything from a drama to a comedy.

Margaret: Well, I have never heard of the 1984 Fine Cotton horse substitution scandal. So in short, I have no idea what this is about. Who is the main character? What kind of challenges does he/she face? I’m not even sure what the genre is because historical fiction can be anything from a drama to a comedy.


BLOOD IN THE STREETS


“Being cops turned them into criminals.”

The judges’ votes:


Do you want to see this film?

Yes: 10% – No:  80% – Not sure:  10%

Would Australians want to see it?

Yes: 0% – No:  60% – Not sure:  40%

Would it work in rest of the world?

Yes:  0% – No:  70% – Not sure:  30%

The judges’ verdict:


Dan: This is just lazy. It’s a tagline – and a crap one at that. Awful, awful, title.

This is just lazy.

Karel: This is not a logline, rather a tag line. But an intriguing one. I would love to hear the film’s proper logline. Who are ‘they’? And what sort of crimes are we expecting? And what specifically turned them into criminals? Once the cops are breaking the law, the tension is on. This has been proving by great movies such as TRAINING DAY, BAD LIEUTENANT etc. and I’m surely interested to see it again.

I would love to hear the film’s proper logline.

Steven: This could conceivably work as serious drama. But, at a minimum, we need to know who the two key ‘cops’ are. In particular, we need to know what kind of people they are as they first walk their beat. In addition, we should be given some hint at what they are going to change into as they become transformed by their street experiences. For example, “a bubbly blonde country girl partners with an idealistic and by-the-book crusader. The two young constables walk their first beat together with good intentions in their hearts. But the streets they walk is an unforgiving jungle. Both will be blooded and irrevocably changed. Neither will recognise what they will become. One will be corrupted irredeemably. The other must decide if the price is worth the risk.”



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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About the Author

Adrian Kok

Comments 1

  1. RE: Blood on the Streets

    Perfect tagline. It implies a partnership (cops), corruption (turned them) and conflict (criminals). It is a tagline which hints at an expected storyline we have all seen before – so it works on many levels in wanting to find out more. A strong trailer/teaser would convince me to watch it.

    This is an example of when less is more.

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