Overall Recommendation:
4.4 stars
(12)
5 Stars:
50.0%
(6)
 
4 Stars:
41.67%
(5)
 
3 Stars:
8.33%
(1)
 
2 Stars:
0%
(0)
 
1 Stars:
0%
(0)
 
Premise:
4.9 stars
(12)
 
Story structure:
4.3 stars
(12)
 
Character:
4.4 stars
(12)
 
Dialogue:
4.1 stars
(12)
 
Emotion:
4.3 stars
(12)
 
 
1-10 of 12 reviews
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1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Let's Hear It For The Bad Guys

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
3 stars
 
Character:
4 stars
 
Dialogue:
4 stars
 
Emotion:
4 stars
 
February 10, 2011
Overall, this was an enjoyable screenplay. the action is well described and allows the story to flow nicely. I like the general plot and the characters as well as the conflicts that arise. Naomi's erotic fascination with Asterius was an intriuging plot line and the death of Professor Bounakees was a great plot twist. I also enjoyed Asterius ripping off his own head although I'm not sure why he did it since his body wasn't pinned. There's a good mix of the supernatural and more realistic villians. I can see this as something a studio might be interested in since there appears to me a dearth of good monster movies and the Minotaur has name recognition. P 19 - Liked - "eats her with his eyes"

My big story note is that the antagonists don't completely work. On the one hand, you have Asterius who wants to awaken from his imposed sleep so that he can get a bride, have a son, and start his own empire. Then you have the avenging Greeks who want to kill Naomi and Hackett as well as punish the USA for killing their brother. Neither assumes the role of lead villian, and they don't work in concert with each other. Once Asterius reveals the full extent of his powers, the Greeks seem insignificant. They also disappear for a large portion of the second act at least in relation to Naomi. After the Greeks capture the President, they don't seem to know what to do with him. In fact, the whole story of breaking into the White House could be a story unto itself. Another issue is that the protagonists are passive in the second act due to fact that the Greeks are out there but Naomi doesn't know it.

My suggestion is that you have the Greeks dupe Naomi and Hackett into bringing Asterius to the United States. Since they are subversive Greeks, they would need Naomi and Hackett to get Asterius close enough to the President to unlease him. This would also explain the discovery of Asterius as more than luck. As it is, Hackett quickly decides to smuggle the cocoon out. It makes Hackett and Naomi appear to be thieves from the beginning not just reluctant caretakers of history.

I thought it odd that Hackett would be the one to take the ring off Asterius and not Naomi. I got this idea Naomi was falling into Asterius's spell and would be the one to do it. I also didn't understand why Naomi went to her town home instead of sticking by the cocoon until it was opened. It seems to me that there's room for a love triangle plot between Teddy, Asterius, and Naomi.

My last big story issue is that Asterius' awakening happens so late into the screenplay, and I wanted him to do more destructive things. Like my son says, "When are they going to stop talking and start fighting?" Think of what the trailer would need to be like to sell this movie.

Nit-Picks:
P. 1 - Maiden - Capitalize ALL speaking roles when first introduced and as proper nouns throughout.
P. 2 - King Minos(') White Citadel
P. 4 - (T)estarosa
P. 7 - A little on the nose. Hackett - " We just can't turn this opportunity..." Avoid dialogue that feels mechanical and too formal.
P. 12- one of the chair's horn(s)
P. 40 - Professor Walhstein should be Walhstein or Professor Walhstein not just "Professor" in the character listing unless you're on Gilligan's Island.

All of the ingredients are here for a saleable screenplay. You're good writer. I just think some things need to be played up more and other issues cut down.
Good luck. Feel free to email me if you have any questions.
 
1 out of 2 people found the following review helpful:

Mess with the bull, get the horns...great movie.

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
4 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
4 stars
 
Emotion:
4 stars
 
February 02, 2011
I had to take a deep breath when starting Asterius. I knew it was going to be something I would either really like or really hate. As soon as we start we are thrust in the midst of a archaeology expedition that doesn't bode well for the two main characters Naomi Slokum and Douglas Hackett. They are professionals; but they don't really shake off that whole Tomb Raider vibe. In Asterius's case that is a good thing. It doesn't feel like Tomb Raider to me; and I am a big fan of the series game and movie wise. Richard takes it someplace else; more akin to Indiana Jones. The story continues on after some of the workers die but they still manage to get what they came for. This is where the story starts to slow down; but that's also not a bad thing. It begins to build up like a soda fizzing up until it spills everywhere. I have not finished it; but I get a really strong vibe that things will get worse for Naomi and Douglas before it gets better. I will complete the review once I complete the script; but so far here is what I think.

Richard has an excellent grasp of how to tell a story; and tell a good one. His characters are vividly described in short sentences that tells you everything you need to know about them. Nobody seems the same as another. His set ups are spot on. His dialogue needs work at spots but that is a minor issue at the least. I am really excited to see how it all plays out.

So far it has the makings of a really good film.

Bravo
 
0 out of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Bullet-paced action/FX fest has everything but the kitchen sink...and maybe that.

Overall Recommendation:
3 stars
 
Premise:
4 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
3 stars
 
Dialogue:
3 stars
 
Emotion:
3 stars
 
February 02, 2011
I have to start with the clear caveat that this isn't my kind of story. That's not a good/bad judgment, it's just not my kind of thing. But if it were, this would be the kind of script that, back in The Day, we used to call a rip-snorter.
It has a nice build, an appropriate sense of the grotesque and creepy, and the finale where a museum's skeletal relics rise from the dead to wage war on the White House (kind of like a dark-hearted version of NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM) would be a hell of a screen-filler! The action builds to a nicely handled full-scale war on the WH grounds where even the President takes a hand. I can see this piece following in the line of such successes as THE MUMMY, Indiana Jones, the Nick Cage archeological adventures, etc.
I think some of the main characters accept the supernatural aspects of the piece way too readily; there's hardly a WTF moment among them and it's hard to imagine them NOT having a BUNCH of WTF moments considering the ever-greater mystical moments of the story.
Some of the dialogue feels a bit stilted, and while that may suit the period elements, it seems odd that Naomi falls so easily into it as well when she's speaking with the Minotaur.
I have some other quibbles, but they seem very minor, like how easily the WH is penetrated, but then this is hardly a docudrama on WH security, and I wonder if dragging the president into this isn't a little bit over the top (but this IS a story that's all about going over the top so I don't know if that's legit even as a quibble).
I do have one significant concern and it's not over the quality of the material. The writing is, in my view, quite accomplished, the bizarre and grand-scale story solidly-crafted. But it's also quite gory, and the amount of effects works promises a fairly expensive film. Can this kind of movie at that kind of cost recoup if it's saddled with an R-rating (which, as written, I feel fairly sure it would earn)?
Well, that's for minds better placed than mind to fret over. Qualitatively, on balance it's a well-put-together big-scale actioner done by someone who, clearly, has what it takes.
 
0 out of 0 people found the following review helpful:

Kept me reading

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
4 stars
 
Character:
4 stars
 
Dialogue:
3 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 25, 2011
I think the opening scene of the professor working on the translations would tie the movie together more than having him pop up later alluding to the fact that he and Naomi had known about his translations. It would also set the stage for the dig.

A small item - don't have Douglas and Leeza use each others names when talking to each other. They, and we, know who they are talking to.

It seems as if everyone knows where all the rooms in the White House are, even the guys from Greece. Make make for interesting scenes if they got a little lost.

Love the statment "Something dead is coming your way".

The dialog at the end seems a little rushed and generic.

All in all, I really liked the screenplay.
 
1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Great Storyline, Good writing and Dialog...I can see this SP in theaters!!

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
4 stars
 
Character:
4 stars
 
Dialogue:
3 stars
 
Emotion:
4 stars
 
January 24, 2011
I must interject off the bat that I am not a big sci-fi/fantasy person as far as reading preference, and when I saw that the sp was 141 pages my heart sank. But The opening was powerful and descriptive to say the least and kept my attention and I liked how clear and precise the action was as this is mainly the reason why I don’t like necessarily reading sci-fi, I typically get lost in the action and just don’t know what’s going on but from the beginning I was able to follow and was pretty much hooked in to the story. I think overall this is a great screenplay and I can see it becoming a viable movie that will draw in a good audience to see this film. Great job Richard. Below is just a few things of notation that I made when reading the sp, hopefully its helpful if not just disregard!lol Thanks for a great Read!

I like how on page 2 the action is precise and to the point, clear and action understood with the attraction of the maiden to Asterius…visual.

I would have liked to have seen a more specific time as far as ‘Ancient Past’ and a descriptive narrative of what is this fantasy time we are in? What are these beings that we are seeing?
Pg 4, 14, 25, 26, 29, 32 (and a few other pages) there’s a bit of a space issue, I know the rtf messed my spacing up as well!

Pg 8 are we seeing Asterius or not? There’s skulls I know but it says staring at Asterius?? If we are seeing this ancient creature for the first time in present day, This is a big deal and the description should reflect as much, but I am unsure if this is the case.

Pg 8-10 love the dialog between Naomi and Hackett here and the action

Pg 11 Great descriptive action here: ‘His light ricochets off the tunnel's walls, revealing again the various drawings, adding a horrific sense of impending claustrophobic terror.’

Pg 13 We are still at the archeological site, I’m wondering if the entire sp is underground at this point?? Since it is not I suggest breaking this long scene up some…I know some movies are 90% one-two locations (like the Descent) but this movie is not that so my suggestion would be breaking up this long underground scene some. And by Pg. 18 we have spent nearly 20 mins underground which is when the next scene takes place. Yes I would suggest breaking the underground scene up some.

Pg 13-14 The set up of the Nightmarish dream is done well.

Pg. 14 This dialog is a bit contrived for me: When Naomi says out loud “what the hell just happened”…suggestion why say anything at all, a horrified look is good enough.

Pg. 15 Are you subtitling your Greek words (Tombaroli??) I see that you are explaining the meaning in the dialog??Just curious.

Pg. 18 Last dialog Hackett gives on the page, this is almost an exact repeat..was said already early on in the sp.

Pg. 23 (dialog/tone between Naomi and Hackett is awesome) I had to scroll back up to the interchange between Hackett and Bounakees to see if this was the same Hackett because He becomes a different man when with Naomi…from Mr. suave to a bumbling schoolboy almost…I’m assuming this was intentional on your part.

Pg. 32 dialog seems a bit forced/contrived to me, the interchange between Augusto and Angelo

Pg. 33 the introductory description of girlfriend Leeza is dead on!lol

Pg. 40-41 Finally we encounter the great Asterius…kinda had to wait a little while but the description was worth the wait.

Pg. 67/68 like turn of things with the bone matter probability.
Pg. 69 Why waste dialog space at all just a description of their lovemaking should suffice and you save half a page!

Pg. 75-76 the moment Asterius and Naomi meets there is almost 2 pages of no dialog here which is 2 mins of time, I suggest interjecting some dialog before the cut to Teddy and Charlie.

I like how the action starts to pick up from about pg 80 and on as we get to experience Asterius powers as well as the other ancient creatures coming on the scene a bit later. Because of the length of the sp I would suggest pulling some of the action scenes back to about pg 50 which also may mean pulling our meeting with Asterius back as well since he is the center of the story, I would have liked to have met him a bit earlier in the sp.

Again overall great story and good writing, liked the ending was somewhat predictable but sci-fi/fantasy typically have a predictable ending where good most times prevails over evil. The storyline itself was the strongest feature of the sp, the dialog I thought could use a little work with less proper English, I have this problem too being a book writer myself, there is that tendency for us to write in perfect grammar and perfect sentences but this is not how people talk in real life.
I think this is a viable sp that can make someone some big bucks!!
 
0 out of 0 people found the following review helpful:

Very unique concept! Definitely love the story!

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 22, 2011
 
0 out of 0 people found the following review helpful:

Revised Teddy adn Naomi Love Scene is great!

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 22, 2011
Love the new revised scene between Teddy and Naomi...
Very sweet!
 
1 out of 1 people found the following review helpful:

Go Greek!

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
5 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
5 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 22, 2011
Great read! Would make a great film! A powerful Minotaur, a beautiful Redhead and an evil ruthless man!
What is not to like?

The story movies along quickly and leaves you wanting more--is there a sequel? Is that why Naomi does what she does at the very end?
 
0 out of 0 people found the following review helpful:

Indiana Jones' Evil Twin meets an intelligent woman!

Overall Recommendation:
5 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
3 stars
 
Character:
5 stars
 
Dialogue:
4 stars
 
Emotion:
5 stars
 
January 21, 2011
I knew I was going to love this from the first scene heading. I’d go across town to see movies on this topic.

He jams the bloody knife right into the picture of the White House on the poster hung on the wall. I love that scene. It plays directly into the common hatred of the U.S. we hear so much about. I wouldn’t walk out of the movie now for money.

If this movie was made right, with the right actors, I know it would be a big hit. It’s a great idea. Very intriguing. The prologue in the Greek isles is a sure winner. Archeology mixed with Greek mythology can stand alone as an absorbing topic, but add some good old hatred of America and Americans and viewers would love it. Each viewer will have something to hope for.


“Handsome... in his own way.” – Love that line! It says a whole lot more than is on the surface.

Pg 41: Now we’re really getting into the story well. I totally fear that Hackett will remove the ring, or someone will, but not Naomi. She’s the cool headed one, though she has fears.

Will be interesting to see how Angelo thinks they will take over the White House. (p 47) Aha, I see, but how will they remain there in the future? (p 51) The line later where one of the brothers says they didn’t expect to get out alive was good. It settled that question.


Wow, Richard. You found a perfect ancient myth to rework into a modern day intrigue. I’m jealous. Why didn’t I think of this?

After finishing, I gave some thought to the protagonist, and I don’t think that was very clear all the way through. In the beginning I was certain Harrison Ford was reincarnated, but almost halfway through that idea lost its momentum. I never get tired of female protagonists, and would like to see Naomi become an even stronger heroine here – beginning right at the start – a female Harrison Ford. But that might be asking too much for anybody except maybe Angelina Jolie. She’d have to dye her hair red for this one.

The biggest thing, however, is the possibilities in this story. I hope it’s given a chance to materialize into something big.

Patsy
 
1 out of 2 people found the following review helpful:

Great story. I can see the novel.

Overall Recommendation:
4 stars
 
Premise:
5 stars
 
Story structure:
3 stars
 
Character:
3 stars
 
Dialogue:
3 stars
 
Emotion:
2 stars
 
January 20, 2011
First off, you are an excellent writer. The way you describe your scenes are rich and full of detail. And you always have imaginative and different ways to describe a scene. Asterius is a joy to read. I imagine your novel to be just as wonderful to read.

OK, so down to business...

You have an interesting story here. The mix of mythology, monsters and action (in my opinion) will always make for a great movie.

In your current draft, your biggest strength is Asterius. He's a dangerous and complex character, not your usual monster fare. I liked him from the beginning, his mannerisms and curiosity to certain things. But he's also menacing and a force of nature.

The weakness of the script seems to be the amount of time you spend on your most expendable character: Hackett. We start the movie with him, follow him around for a good amount of time, and then...well you know what happens. By the end of the script I know who the main characters are, but I spent most of the script rooting for one guy who turns out not to be the guy. I think you could get away with this bit of misdirection, except for one glaring problem:

From the start of Act 2 (Which I figured to be when they got back to D.C.), to about midway through the act (which I figured to be when Asterius wakes up), Hackett just seems to be going through the motions, as most are. He's featured prominently, but then falls into the fold of everything else going on and does nothing of significance.

Of course, if misdirection was not your intention, and if you were going for a fall from grace story with him, the amount of time we spend with him does not need to be as much as you have now. It threw me off. And I felt a little betrayed that I had to spend so much time with him. Betrayed only because of how you determined his fate. It just happens. Nothing special. And I'm like, I was invested in this guy, and now...he's not even in Act 3?

So, structure...

I was trying to find the acts in here, and figured Act 1 ends at pg. 30, Act 2 ends on pg 95 (65 pages), Act 3 is 34 pages. You've got a great big Act 2 in there, and I felt it during the read. I divided Act 2 into two parts: Part 1 (38 pages) and Part 2 (27 pages). Part 1 of Act 2 spends a lot of time giving us information, but seems like connect the dots. There's nothing about this part of the story that kept me on edge. It just seemed like you felt you had to get through it. There's nothing really going on to hold interest. And there is potential, you have the components, and with some revising you could give this section of the story some punch or streamline it.

For example, you spend pages 34-41 pretty much studying Asterius, taking pictures. And there is a long intro in the museum that goes on too long (And I figured you were setting up for later, but it drags).

Which brings me to the biggest problem with Act 2. Your terrorists have four pages in Act 1 and then we don't see them again until page 50. That's a long time. They have two pages dedicated to them between 50-54. Maybe half a page on 63. One and half pages 77-79. And then they start to kick in by 84. That's about eight pages altogether until their storyline goes into high gear. So when it got into Part 2 of Act 2, when these guys started their plan it felt tacked on. I know it isn't, as they play a roll in Act 3, but my initial response was an overwhelming sense of exhaustion, only because I'd seen so little of them and now to tack them in to the last part of the story. I eventually liked them, but when they get into the big leagues late in Act 2 it seems to throw the story off kilter a little.

But yeah, with some revising, the two stories might balance out.

Now to characters...

The detriment to your main characters is the focus on Hackett in the beginning. Especially Teddy. Starting on page 42 you have this exchange:

TEDDY
I can't. I've got a potential buyer for the plane.

NAOMI
(looks surprised)
Without big bird, what will you do for a living?

TEDDY
Run a little seaplane service in Seattle. Cascade Mountains and Puget Sound. Nature at its finest. Be home every night.

NAOMI
You make it sound very nice.

TEDDY
It could be... for both of us.

NAOMI
I need... I want... that feeling of achievement in science. I just haven't made my mark yet.

TEDDY
Hey, you've made your mark on me. I've been crazy about you, forever.

With so little time on their relationship, this comes across as awkward. It's almost as if it comes out of the blue. Next thing you know, they're sleeping together. Teddy seems like a good enough character to develop through their relationship, and he becomes very important towards the end. But the impact of his importance is diminished by the lack of development.

Side characters:

Artie - He's bland until you throw the curve ball with the skeletons and his reaction to Leeza. If he's a creep, writing him creepy from the beginning would have more impact on the revelation with what he did to his father. As it stands now, his creepiness seems tacked on.

Leeza - She seems to play no real role except to give Hackett a hard time and then throw nervous glances around. She doesn't even give Hackett a real hard time, but comes across as a minor annoyance. You have a chance to give her a strong personality, for good or bad, and sway a reader to feel something for her. Right now, I just rolled with where her character ended up and didn't feel one way or the other about it.

Professor Walhstein - This guy reminded me of Walter from Fringe. A guy who goes with crazy theories without question. I don't mind it. Good to have such a character. The only problem with him is the influence he wields. He tells Naomi what he believes will happen, she believes it, and she tells Teddy, and he believes it, and then she tells the President and he believes it. It's like the professor is a device to get everyone on the same page. And no one stops to question it. No one is unbelieving. No one is skeptical. The professor conveys information and people step in line. Too easy.

Onto the story!

Like I said, I liked the story. There are two great big glaring plot holes that took me straight out of the script, and one logical point that I questioned.

First, the logical point: Why would Naomi go along with Hackett's plan? With such a find at the excavation site, why not get the media involved? She had pictures, evidence. If she was afraid of the doctor stealing it, wouldn't it make sense to get as many people involved as possible? Stealing the cocoon seemed to go against her character.

Plot point 1: How did the plane get into America? There's regulations. Protocol. And the plane landed somewhere around D.C. no less! Probably the most heavily monitored airspace in the U.S.

Plot point 2: The terrorists getting into the White House. Here's the problem with the plan - it's too simple. The way you write it, they basically waltz right up to the President. This plot point might throw most people off. Most people know the heavy security around the President and the White House. A tunnel that has been forgotten isn't compelling enough. If you want people to perk up with such a plan, it needs to be slightly more elaborate. (But to tell you the truth, maybe if they somehow coerced Asterius into invading the White House, that might be a good part of their plan. A plan that goes horribly wrong?). Well, the plan needs something extra to make it believable.

Alright, now for the prose!

You write really well! And as I stated in the beginning, you are very descriptive. There are places you tell the reader what's going on, rather than showing:

Page 1 - evoking a chronicle of unspeakable violence.

Page 13 - Nerve-shattering.

- Her heart pounding in her ears. (Do we hear this? If not, it's telling)

Page 21 - She's an immediate turn-on.

Page 24 - Some history here,

Page 26 - He is the SECOND SON of DOCTOR BOUNAKEES (36) and a violent hot head.
On the quiet side, but desperate to prove his worth to the others.

Page 31 - A little unsettling.

Page 42 - Teddy is really more interested in Naomi than business.

Page 43 - No small talk here.

Page 47 - A skin-crawling, creepy atmosphere.

Page 58 - With all this activity we have a sense that Asterius' eyes will pop open.

Streamlining will pace the read better. And as much I love your writing, some places it seemed a literary flourish that isn't necessary.

Page 47 - The silken cocoon has been completely removed. Like laundry, its draped over the piping. (Like laundry does invoke a certain image, but simply being draped over the piping should be enough)

Page 63 - She smiles, lays back on the pillow. Her hair radiating like a bed of fiery charcoal. (How will her hair radiating like a bed of fiery charcoal translate to screen? Mostly, it will just be red hair)

Page 73 - Asterius nudges her like some egotistical artist would a patron looking for a critical opinion. (I don't even know what this means)

You do have some good descriptions that give a little more detail to a scene, but there are others that don't need to be there, or are confusing. It might be good to go through I ask yourself what is important and what is not.

All in all, I think with some tuning up, this will be a great read. Interesting and action packed.
 

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