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The Sacrifice Trilogy

This blog is for persons to comment on my screenplay, SACRIFICE, available at http://dvc.org.uk/sacrific.txt/ in PDF.

Please read the screenplay and give me feedback - which may well help in building the sequel.

It's a horror-sci-fi set in the near future, with themes and imagery not for the easily offended.

Go to it.

sim's picture

About "Sacrifice"

For those who haven't read the script... it's a mish-mash of science fiction and Christian myth, with your overly familiar images of '80s style totalitarian state and Anti-Christ ratchet-jaw despot as "the Leader".

Improvements. Axe the spaceship scenes. The Genesis, all of it. If you're going for some kind of theme, it should be a unified theme. The Phoenix Nebula, the Megalith, all the space stuff, make things less coherent. Have everything take place on earth. If you still need the Sarcophagus scene, put it in Palestine with a stone that gets rolled from the cave entrance -- it fits your theme and imagery, no? Mary could be an archeologist or something. If the Leader/The Man is alien [see "Questor Tapes"], so be it, but keep it earthbound. The cussing robot scene is cute, maybe you can keep it with a battledroid.

I think your best bits are the battle scenes. They're the ones you've packed with detail and that you seem most comfortable with. These also require the least characterization and dialogue. Maybe to focus on your strengths, you could make it all from the perspective of the soldiers or the Rebels. Think about how "Robocop" managed to add all the little details of its world.

Finally, the script felt dated. Like, over a decade. It really seemed like I was ready something from the Reagan/Thatcher era. No one has cell phones; advanced tech isn't ubiquitous, but you've got FTL and artificial gravity derived from black hole technology; AI is sufficient for domestic bots, battledroids, and ships' computers but that's it.

Personally, it wasn't my cup of tea. But I tried to make helpful comments.

=S=

re 'about "Sacrifice"'

Thanks for your comments.

It's not surprising it's dated a bit - I wrote it in the early 90s - then again these things come around again.

The reason nobody has cellphones is because they weren't necessary to the plot, any talking is done over encrypted packet radios (military). Cellphones are, after all, a good way of giving away your position and letting everyone who's eavesdropping know what you're doing.

The AI vs Strong AI / GAI debate is a big one. It's hard to get into it in a script. The comments about problems with the Battle Droids' software allude to it. The robots aren't alive like Commander Data, they're simulcra - clever automatons. I think too many people spend too much time reading Ray Kurzweil's stuff! I'm not sure how I can make that clearer, tho it should come out more in the sequels.

I thought it's made clear in the script that the Leader was the source of the advanced FTL stuff, and indeed pretty much anything todo with what was necessary for the Genesis Mission.

I don't understand your point about the tech - the thing about sufficiently advanced tech is that it becomes invisible. Unless it's necessary to the plot why would we see it? Also, the destruction of the Spaceport caused a massive degradation in telecomms capabilities - imagine what taking out all the LEO and GEO satellites would do today! But maybe I didn't spell that out enough - then again, how much hand-holding can you do in a screenplay?

Perhaps more things will become clearer (including to me) as the sequels arrive.

Anyhow, I think I'll need to write quite a few screenplays before I get it right.

AI

For more on my thoughts on AI, check...

http://dvc.org.uk/sketches/storr.html