Overall Recommendation:
4.8 stars
(4)
5 Stars:
75.0%
(3)
 
4 Stars:
25.0%
(1)
 
3 Stars:
0%
(0)
 
2 Stars:
0%
(0)
 
1 Stars:
0%
(0)
 
Premise:
4.5 stars
(4)
 
Story structure:
4.5 stars
(4)
 
Character:
4.3 stars
(4)
 
Dialogue:
4.8 stars
(4)
 
Emotion:
4.8 stars
(4)
 
 
1-4 of 4 reviews
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0 out of 0 people found the following review helpful:

Rewarding and satisfaying page turner

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 27, 2015
Starting with the title of the script: Quicksand

Very appropriate title because Quicksand hopelessly reels in the reader deeper and deeper into this witty tale of a teenage boy who quickly loses his way.

That teenage boy is Jaden. And, if not for Sydney, he'd have no chance at redemption.

I love how the writer, Lisa, throws clues throughout the story. She lines up all the characters such that we only see their flaws. We tumble into the tale thinking we know where it will end.

Jaden becomes infatuated with a troubled girl because he is troubled himself. Sydney is puppy love over Jaden who does not notice her. Mikka is the neighborhood jerk who pretends Briana is his toy. Briana is a user, a thief and a liar who is only out for herself. Henry is the ruthless store manager who catches Briana stealing and takes advantage of the situation. Big Dog is the shady owner of a car lot who tries to blackmail Jaden after car parts disappear from his shop. Renne and Lonnie are the naive parents of Jaden who fail to see the wrong turns their son's life is taking. Jaden himself is not quite so bad but he is too easily given to self-sabotage and destructive behavior. He is basically an accident waiting to happen.

I have to admit here that I've on the outset of the quest to read the script, I underestimated it because the title is so simplistic and predictable.

Simplistic and predictable, this tale is not.

Lisa is a professional writer. Her penmanship never fails the reader. She expertly weaves a fast-pace, action-packed, feel-good story around Jaden and his lot. She brings us ful circle in the conclusion.

It is a breathless tale. We feel bad for Jaden. And we become so committed to the story that we can't turn away from it because it spells doom. But her writing is so tantalizing that we, as readers are drawn deeper and deeper.

The ending is satisfying. Every turn is satisfying.

Lisa, the author of Quicksand, rewards us for sticking to the story and reading it in full.

In fact, she never left us a way out.
 
2 out of 2 people found the following review helpful:

I have a feeling you have a lot more stories to tell that will make it to the screen.

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 12, 2013
This is my first review, ever, Lisa.

Consequently I will start with the reason I picked this story, it was your passion.

I vote you keep writing at the typewriter this morning. That's for sure.

Okay, I don't know how to do a pro review but I can try a quick impression.

This story is so wired for tension it sizzles to a kid. So, keep that stuff cookin'.

My only real impression is there could be a (don't stick your tongue out) a real character here to build a series of neighborhood stories around and that is Sydney.

She is the star.

Endless lines of other believable characters, but dare I say it, Sydney can be a 21st century Nancy Drew.

'Jaden's Story' seems like a great beginning. Run with it!

It is only a suggestion.

I wish you all the encouragement you need to take it where you want to be with it.

I have a feeling you have a lot more in you.
 
0 out of 1 people found the following review helpful:

A delightful spiral into darkness

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
4 stars
 
Story structure:
4 stars
 
Character:
3 stars
 
Dialogue:
4 stars
 
Emotion:
4 stars
 
August 04, 2012
This is a very endearing story, well written, with excellent pacing and quite a few laugh out loud lines. I enjoyed it! From one misstep for Jaden to the next, the tension builds up nicely, to the point that I figured poor Jaden had reached the point of no return! Very well done!

The characters are all great and well imagined, distinct from one another. I wouldn't change any of them, except maybe for...

And this is probably my biggest quibble: Jaden. Throughout the story, while he's doing all these things, getting himself deeper into trouble, he basically comes across as an innocent being pushed from one situation to another. As it stands, he's maybe a little too one dimensional? Granted, he's likable. He cries a lot. Feels sorry. But this is his story and it seems like he needs an emotional arc. Like he needs a struggle besides the circumstances he's thrust into.

Of course, he wants to impress Briana, but he does it in such a puppy dog way. As a suggestion, maybe show him a bit more frustrated, or even angry, in the beginning. He's young. His emotions are in overdrive. Why can't he be angry that Briana doesn't notice him? Why can't we see him jealous? He's still a good kid, but his journey into darkness should, it seems, stem from a place of darkness, so that when he does eventually see the light it's more meaningful.

Also, can we see him enjoy that darkness a bit? The sequence where he and Briana break into the mall, could he not enjoy the fact that she's helping him? He's infatuated with her, and though he's in trouble, could he not take comfort that his childhood friend, the girl whose attention he's been vying for, is there, supposedly for him? Maybe he can take a bit of courage from her being there? It seems this would make his heartbreak all the more substantial when she takes half the money.

Of course, this will make him less likable, but I think for his journey, to see him be a little more selfish will give the ending a greater impact. As it stands now, I didn't feel like he really learned anything of substance about himself, that him as a person had no real arc.

Which leads me to the ending: Does he do anything to really earn Sydney's affection? Of course she's in love with him, but in the context of the story, it seems like he should do something to really earn her to stick by him. He spills his guts to her, to Henry...what if he confesses everything to the cops? I can see him on the side of the road, tired of it all, and just mans up and tells them everything, while looking for the gun. I can see Sydney and Henry trying to stop him. And when the cops take him away, I can see Sydney looking at him in a different light, with a deeper affection, prompting her to take action, to try and clear his name. I don't know, but it seems like he should do something, demonstrate a measure of growth, by that point in the story.

Also, I'm not sure what happens in the cell, when Briana sees Jaden. It seems like there should be some closure there, but a streetwalker interferes, comments on her dress, and that's the end of the scene. Not sure what to make of it. Not sure what to make of Jaden saying she wasn't treated right by him. (In fact, the whole backstory of Briana not being treated right is a bit fuzzy, especially since she seems so popular now)

And speaking of the end, shouldn't there be some kind of consequences? Yes, Jaden is on house arrest. But I couldn't see him and Mika becoming friends. What Jaden did was wrong, and it seems for Mika to forgive so easily is a little too easy. Something like that, it seems it would take years to sort out, if it ever does. Having Mika ultimately be a good kid who is now jaded toward Jaden, could really hit home that wrong actions do have lasting consequences. Not sure how it would play out, but that one point seemed a little too easy for me.

Anywho, like I said, I enjoyed the script and laughed out loud at certain points, felt the genuine tension at other points, and the story itself is very well plotted out. My opinions on Jaden are, of course, just my opinions, so take from them what you will. But again, very well done!
 
3 out of 4 people found the following review helpful:

The more you fight the faster you sink!

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
4 stars
 
Story structure:
4 stars
 
Character:
4 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
November 16, 2011
Hi Lisa,
I just finished reading Quicksand and it was a delight.
On page 70. She is about to say something she knows is wrong. ( I personally get it and I do like it).
But I can see other Reviewers saying: that belongs in a novel because you can’t read her mind.
On page 93. She’s just (a) bad girl. (Wow just one error in your whole friggin Script!) Bravo!!!
You built the tension up high and I felt really sorry for Jaden. So glad it ended differently than I anticipated.
One of my favorite scenes was the last two pages as they talk matter-of-factly and the soft humor at the end.


BTW: You should be given a Black Belt as an editor and reviewer; you are awesome!
 

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