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I need help here...
I am told by a contest that my script is indulgent?
What does this mean?
The last time I heard this word when it was used to describe a script KILL BILL 1 AND 2. But those were great scripts.
I think if the dialouges is "INDULGENT", then it shows the eccentric side of the characters.
I think being INDULGENT is o.k. and the readers won't mind, is this true? Please advise?
Without reading your script, I cannot give you any advice on what these people picked up on.
However, I can make one guess... and it's ONLY a guess. When someone does something that's indulgent, it's usually referencing something that only that person would like. Like self gratifying. It's a small possibility that the people who said this felt that the subject matter of your script was of only interest to you the writer and possibly not an audience.
Like I said, it's only a guess.
Perhaps it means you indulged your characters rather than challenge them.
If you really want to know, I recommend a script consultant. Someone like Barb Doyon.
I read so many scripts where the characers were indulgent, but these were great films.
I don't know for sure, but my gut feeling tells me that indulgence in small doses is a good thing to give spice to your scripts.
Like everyone else said, I can't offer advice on your particular script because I haven't read it.
But I would like to caution you about a writer's trap you're nearing. It's the "but it worked in that movie" trap (and it's snared me many a time).
The thing about Kill Bill is that it was written by the man who would direct it; a man who has enormous creative freedom in Hollywood. So he only needed to transcribe his vision to himself, unlike most of us who need our vision to appeal to an endless string of readers.
I seriously doubt Kill Bill would progress in any competition. I doubt it would make it out of the story department in any studio or production company.
I always find it tempting to overlook the faults in my own scripts by saying, "It worked in Silence of the Lambs!" "It worked in Tootsie!" "It worked in Adaptation!"
It's great to use existing scripts to figure out ways to work out problematic scenes or characters (you want a great reveal? Read Usual Suspects). But never point to them as rationale for overlooking a problem.
Sorry if it seems as though I'm singling you out. That was my advice to everyone.
Thanks Walter, you solve 80% of my quesiton.
Thank you for clear thoughts and advice.
Hey John and Walter
Would you say that this is reason why Grind House flopped -- because the directors and writers were "indulgent".
Which means that producers will pay attention to writers who are indulgent.
I suggest that you write an email to the contest and ask for clarification on what the judge means when he/she says your script is "indulgent." Add that you have discussed the comment with other screenwriters and script doctors and all you get is wide-ranging speculation. Then, tell us what answer you get, if any.
The coverage provider is not replying to my email.
Sounds like a sub-contractor?
But I will send him another email..
You said in your original post that this comment was from a contest. Now, you refer to a coverage provider. Was this purchased coverage or a comment from a contest? If it was purchased, then they absolutely owe you a clarification. If it came from a contest, they don't OWE you any clarification, but they SHOULD make an effort to clarify the comment. Most contests would, unfortunately, ignore your request.
Its was a contest and for another fee they would provide converage.
They had an option for coverage.
But I will contact them again.
I did not see Grindhouse, so I cannot comment. All I can do is speculate and that wouldn't help. Sorry.
Probably means too much TELLING, not enough SHOWING. Action descriptions might be too wordy and/or flowery, with a lot of unnecessary overkill. Now I’m only speaking from experience, so not trying to slam you or anything.
If you’ve only written a few scripts, you might be too busy getting your thoughts on paper to actually consider ways to “keep it simple”, as they say. So first drafts/beginner scripts end up reading more like a novels than screenplays.
In that sense, the writer can be seen as being indulgent – giving the reader a WHOLE lot of work to do, as they must “interpret” all of your flowery language, forcing them to guess what the gist of the scene is supposed to be.
You’ve written all these nice words for YOURSELF – but it does nothing for the reader.
I’m only meaning this in a constructive way. Good luck :)
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