This is a transcript of SYS Podcast Episode 417 – Have 10 Minutes… You Can Write Your Screenplay .
Welcome to Episode 417, the Selling Your Screenplay Podcast. I’m Ashley Scott Meyers, screenwriter, blogger with sellingyourscreenplay.com. Today I’m interviewing author and screenwriting consultant Pilar Alessandra. She has her own podcast called On The Page. But she’s also written a number of books, including the coffee break screenwriter, where she’s come up with a plan for busy people to write their screenplays in short, 10-minute bursts, which I think is how a lot of busy people have to write their screenplays, especially when they’re just starting out. So, stay tuned for that interview.
If you find this episode valuable, please help me out by giving me a review in iTunes or leave me a comment on YouTube or retweeting the podcast on Twitter or liking or sharing it on Facebook. These social media shares really do help spread word about the podcast, so they’re very much appreciated. Any websites or links that I mentioned the podcast can be found on my blog in the show notes. I also publish a transcript with every episode in case you’d rather read the show or look at something later on. You can find all the podcast show notes www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/podcast and then just look for episode number 417. If you want my free guide How to Sell a Screenplay in five weeks, you can pick that up by going to sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide It’s completely free. Just put in your email address and I’ll send you a new lesson once per week for five weeks along with a bunch of bonus lessons. I teach the whole process of how to sell your screenplay in that guide. I’ll teach you how to write a professional logline and query letter, and how to find agents, managers and producers who are looking for material, really is everything you need to know to sell your screenplay just go to sellingyourscreenplay.com/guide. So, a quick few word about what I’ve been working on over the last week or so, we’re finally ready for the release of The Rideshare Killer and have the deliverables all together. I spent a good part of this week just getting all the deliverables onto a hard drive. If you’re curious about what the deliverables are, I thought I would just run through it quickly here. Obviously, there’s the actual film, which is a high resolution 2k version, which is about 100 gigs. But we also created a 4k version, which is about 400 gigs. And then there’s the 5.1 Surround Sound version. The other versions I just mentioned were both stereo and then we also did what’s called an M&E version, which is the film but without all the dialogue it has the sound effects, and M&E stands for music and effects. It has the sound effects like footsteps, doors opening closing, and of course it does have the music, but it has no dialogue. So that then if other countries want to show the movie, they have a version that they can use to make a dub in their language. So, there’s actually if you do the math on this quickly, there’s actually six versions of the film, 2k stereo, 4k stereo, 2k 514 K, 512 K, M&E and 4k, M&E, I suppose we actually as I was, writing this, I think I suppose we actually should have created a 5.1 M&E in both 4k and 5k too, but we didn’t. And I wonder if bigger films actually do that, I honestly don’t know the answer. But we basically created these six versions of the film. So that’s the film part of it. But we also had to put the trailer on the drive. And that gave me a little bit of an issue. My trailer editor delivered it in mp4, but the distributor wanted it in Pro Res 422. And then we have three different versions of the poster, there’s sort of the traditional one that has more height than width. And then we had another version created that has more width than height, you need these different versions for the various platforms. Some platforms want a wide version, somewhat of taller version, I had to create what’s called a chapter break sheet. Basically, it’s a bunch of time codes where the companies can put in advertisements. And it’s you know, not just in like the middle of a scene actually went through the movie and tried to find some logical places where you could insert some advertisements and not actually disrupt the flow of the story that’s going to be used on advertised supported what’s called a VOD-platforms, platforms like 2BTV, they are free, you can download their app onto your Roku or Apple TV or, or any number of devices like that. And then you can watch movies for free but how they make money is they actually insert advertisements. So, that will be a platform that we probably end up with. And then there’s also what’s called a music cue sheet. This is something that composer created for us we have to include that as just the as a deliverable. I think it’s used to keep track of the music and pay the composer through ASCAP and BMI. I’m honestly not even sure but you always deliver a music cue sheet, we had the signed contract that goes on the deliverable, the hard drive as well. And then I had to go through the film and actually pull out five stills from the film. They’ll use these in various ways. Again, just promoting the film, the distributor needs all of this stuff. So anyways, this ended up being about two terabytes of information. So once I had it all onto a drive, it literally took the computer I mean, it’s not like I’m sitting there watching it, but it literally took almost two days just to copy two terabytes from one drive to the other. I did it one day was like nine hours the next day it was like another 12 hours or something, just pulling these files across. So that just took some time again, it’s not hard because you’re not sitting there watching it or anything you’re doing, you’re out doing other stuff, but it does slow things down. Anyways, I’m sending it out to the distributor tomorrow in the mail. So hopefully they’ll have it, and then we will talk to them and set a release date. They will do some QC, quality control checks on it, and just make sure everything is up to snuff. I did have an issue with the pinch, when I delivered that a few years ago, some frames got dropped in the outputting of the film, there was a couple of frames, they didn’t they actually get dropped, they got like transformed where one frame was before the other and they run these films through some sort of like, you know, automated system that just goes through and checks all the frames and made sure this caught it with the pain. So, we had to like re output that film, obviously, that’s going to be a major, it’s not going to be hard, but it’s going to be a major pain in the neck. If something like that happens, it will definitely slow us down because it will take my editor either to create those six versions, you know, it takes his computer to output one of those versions of 4k, you know, version, I think it takes us computer like 18 hours just to output that one version. Again, those 4k versions are like 400 gigs. But hopefully there’s no problems, my editor is really excellent. So, I’m hoping that his system didn’t have any hiccups and everything was output correctly. So, we’ll see on that. But as I said, I’m sending the drive to the distributor tomorrow. And we’ll hopefully have an announcement here in the next couple of weeks about when the film’s actually going to get released and where it’s going to be released.
The other big thing I’ve been working on doing I mentioned this last week, I’ve been doing some Tik Tok videos on screenwriting, I’m basically doing like one minute movie reviews from a screenwriting angle. So, I try and just pull one screenwriting lesson out of a movie that I saw and post a Tik Tok about it. I’m not really getting any traction with this, they tick tock seems to kind of give you 150 300 views just for uploading a video. But I’m not really getting much past that on most of my videos, I was cutting up the podcast and putting that on there. And again, it just sort of was flatlining. So, I thought I will make some original Tik Toks. I really enjoy Tik Tok as a user, I actually spend time watching it. So, it’s fun to kind of create these things. So, if you use Tic Tok, please do check out my channel and give me some likes. It’s just my name Ashley Scott Myers, you can look me up there. Again, it’s just it’s really a fun, I just find it really just a fun, entertaining platform to be a consumer on. But I also find it fun to actually create these Tik Toks. Because they’re only one minute, they’re really not that hard. You know, I watch movies anyways, and have, you know, thoughts as a screenwriter on these movies anyway, so it’s not really that hard for me to generate these things. And as I said, I actually kind of enjoy doing it. So, I’m going to try this for a few weeks anyways, and just see if I can start to get a little traction on the platform. Hopefully, there’s some screenwriters over there. And you know, all of this stuff is sort of falls under this umbrella, much like this podcast is sort of a marketing, you know, channel for selling your screenplay. So, you know, just combining some things that I think are fun and interesting things I know about. And then hopefully, there is some actual value to me where, you know, I get other screenwriters get introduced to sort of what I’m doing. I actually did one on the new Netflix film called Don’t Look Up, that was one of the first ones I did over the weekend. And I’m going to be doing that I’m going to just show you I write like a little script. So, I’m going to be going through that one here at the end of this podcast, just to kind of show that people know, as I said, sort of what to expect on these Tik Toks. But if you’re on Tik Tok, definitely give it a look and check it out. And I’m open to feedback as well. You know, you got any ideas. I’m definitely new to the platform, and there’s definitely sort of a style that Tik Tok has. So, if you do use Tic Tok, or you’re an expert at it, definitely reach out I’d love to hear what you think of my videos. Anyways, those are the things that I’ve been working on the last couple of weeks. So now let’s get into the main segment.
Today I am interviewing podcast or screenwriter consultant and author Pilar Alessandra. Here is the interview.
Ashley: Welcome Pilar to the Selling your Screenplay Podcast. I really appreciate you coming on the show with me today.
Pilar: Thank you so much for having me.
Ashley: So, to start out, maybe you can tell us a little bit about your background. Where did you grow up? And how do you get interested in the entertainment business?
Pilar: Oh, where’d I grow up? Well, I grew up all over the East Coast. I graduated from a high school near Boston. I came out to LA when I was 22. And I started reading scripts when I was 25. And through being a script reader, I got very interested in analysing scripts. What was working and not working and why, started teaching classes. Those tools really worked for people and they were translated into a book. And I continue to teach and consultant. That’s what I do, and I love it.
Ashley: Gotcha. Gotcha. So, talk about that transition from Boston to LA was the purpose to come out here and get into the entertainment industry, or was there some other reason you moved from Boston to LA?
Pilar: It was to follow my boyfriend, Ashley, it was to follow my boyfriend who was like, let’s go to LA and I was like, hey, yeah, right. And he went, you know what, you should go first. So I went, and he just never showed up. So, then it was like, well, the weather’s really good. And a friend of mine, who I’d gone to college with and knew that I love doing analytical papers on literature, said, hey, you know, writing a script cover just kind of like the same thing. It’s a book report on a script, why don’t you, you know, read a couple of scripts for me for free. And I did, and I was like, well, that’s really fun. And then I found out you could get paid for it. So that’s what sort of launched me into script reading and script analysis.
Ashley: Okay, interesting. And I had a similar experience. When I got to LA, I found an agent, there was the same thing. There was no payment, it was like; Hey, come in and read some scripts pile of scripts. How do you recommend in this day and age that was again over 20 years ago, so, it was in, you know, more physical walking into things? What do you recommend to new writers, if someone wants to start to read other scripts and do analysis? How can someone find those internships or even unpaid that eventually move into paid analysis work?
Pilar: You know, in my day, being a paid script reader was definitely a thing. Everybody had a reader pool, a paid reader pool. Now, it is different because what production companies started realising is they could cut costs by just having their already overworked assistants also read and analyse, and then they could cut costs even more by having free interns come on in and do that kind of work. So really, as far as paid readers reader, go, there just isn’t that much work that is non-union anymore. The main studios have union readers, and that’s it, the production companies do not. So, what I’d suggest to people is, if they’re interested in story analysis, they might also be interested in being a creative executive or producer. And to have that kind of a track where they’re not just reading to make money, because they’re not going to, they’re reading to help them understand an analytical career that can move them forward toward being a producer, or working for a production company.
Ashley: Gotcha. Gotcha. So, I want to just talk just quickly about your podcast, before I started my podcast, you were already podcasting. And in fact, you were one of the first screenwriting podcasts that I listened to way back. How many years have you been doing it? As I started my eight years ago, and you’ve been around for years, eight years ago,
Pilar: Ashley, I think this is gonna be 15. I think I might have hit 15. I don’t know. It’s so old. I can’t count.
Ashley: And what was it? How did you even hear about podcasts, I started listening to podcasts. And I was just reading someone’s blog, and he had the link on his blog. So, I would just literally just listen on like a web browser, and then started to get into it. So, I didn’t even really know what these were 15 years ago. How did you get into them? And how did you sort of be? How were you so bullish on them so early?
Pilar: Well, I don’t know if I was bullish. So much as I was too lazy to blog, you know, and that was a, you know, I saw people were logging and my husband’s friend had a comedy podcast, he wanted to use my writer studio. And I said, yeah, if I can use your equipment, and your producer for my own podcast, and then I started, you know, talking about scripts on a Sunday or talking, you know, first it was what I thought about everything, and then it was, you know, talking to other people. Either way, I didn’t really think anybody was listening. And I wish I knew people were listening because they were listening, because like you said, there just weren’t that many screenwriting podcasts. And you know, I was drinking beer and I was just chatting, it was really loosey-goosey. And then when I realised people were paying attention, they were really trying to get a nugget from the show. I started taking this very seriously and made sure that they left every episode with a takeaway for their own screenwriting.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah, for sure. And so, what do you tell writers that are coming up? I mean, there’s so much information now between podcasts and blogs and YouTubes and Tik Toks and Facebook and Twitter. How should an aspiring screenwriter, someone coming into the space, how should they handle just this tidal wave of potential information that nobody could really keep up? No, reasonable person could keep up with, what do you tell writers how to navigate that?
Pilar: Sure. Ah, gosh, I mean, it’s just as far as the learning part of it.
Ashley: Just how do they find the right information? How do they get through that sea of information? I mean, there’s a lot of bad information, mediocre information. How do you actually find the stuff that’s good for screenwriters, how can they find this information?
Pilar: Well, gosh, I mean, my first I think that the best way to learn is to watch is to watch movies, then look at the scripts and do your own analysis. Where is the script on the page meeting, what’s on the screen? Where does it differ? What’s the timing of it? At what point do the plot points shift, so that you’re educating yourself as a viewer, as a fan, as an expertise in a genre, start there. And then, as far as you know, the glut of information out there, I really feel like you have to go with what speaks to you as a viewer. And as a writer, I know that sounds pokey, but sometimes you’re with a teacher and you go oh, yeah, that’s it. That’s a process that will work for me. Not everybody’s works for everybody. I’m hoping mine works for everybody. But who knows? Right? And, and the one thing I would sort of argue not to do is chase a formula. I do you feel like sometimes people get so rigid, in what has to go at what page, okay, that they, they start writing to formula, instead of letting that formula, maybe help analyse their material or strengthen certain parts of it. When you write a formula. You may check every box and be really good student, but your script is going to be really safe and probably not very original.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah. Sound advice, for sure. So, let’s dig into your book, the coffee break screenwriter writing your script 10 minutes at a time. Maybe you can just give us a quick pitch or logline for this book, what is this book all about?
Pilar: They’re talking about people who, who write books right through. So the coffee break screen writer, writing your script 10 minutes at a time. So, I created it, because I was already I had been teaching classes for years. And what I started realising was not only was this people’s learning time, but it was often their writing time. So, I would sort of say, okay, here’s a writing tool you can use to crack open a certain element in writing story or dialogue or character. And then I would stop and say, why don’t you do that right now? You know, you got 10 minutes. And I’d be amazed at how people with focused 10 minutes would come up with extraordinary things. So, it taught me as I was teaching them that, that bite sized moments in your script, put them all together, you’ll finish the script. So, I created a bunch of writing tools called the coffee break screenwriter that would take you step by step through that process. Or if you’re a rewrite mode, or just trying to strengthen your craft, you could jump around in the book, and go to the rewrite section, or go to the craft section, and find a writing tool that could help you in 10 minutes, strengthen something in your script. So, that’s at least the goal of the book.
Ashley: Gotcha. Gotcha. And yeah, when I was reading about it, it sounds like great. I mean, as a parent, just as a busy person, I think we all find ourselves in those situations where we’re just strapped for time. And we do find these little kernels of No, so I thought was a great premise. For a writing book. Can you give us some examples, like you mentioned templates and stuff, some of these work workshops that you create tools in your book, can you give us some specific examples to kind of think about to work through?
Pilar: So, in the book, actually, I’m going to, you know, if you turn him into the end of the book, they are pitching templates. And they are fill in the blank kind of pitching templates. That doesn’t mean that I want you to pitch like everybody else in the whole world. But it gives you a way to change one word and change your story, change one verb, you change the action, change one adjective, you change your description of your character. And as you’re doing that your pitch is evolving. Well, you could even start with that. And you’ll have a sort of a modest little outline. So, it’s little things like that, that you can use throughout. You can stop, you can do this work, and boom, you know, you’ll move forward.
Ashley: Gotcha. Who is this book for more, TV writing? I noticed on your podcast, you do have a lot of TV writers, would you say it’s more helpful for feature writers more helpful for TV writers, both people writing shorts, who really is this book geared towards?
Pilar: When I first wrote the book. It was more geared toward feature writers because I taught features mainly because of my experience over the years, because of what’s happened to all the platforms that are out there for content. Many of my writers became successful TV writers. And so I started Teaching TV because I was working with them privately on their TV pilots. So, teaching people teaches you and so I really learned how to teach TV. And I integrated those TV techniques into the newer edition, if you will. Newer being I think it was 2017 was the one with the white cover. So, if you guys get this book, the coffee break screenwriter look for the one with the white cover. Eventually, I think I’d like to update it even more, because the TV that I teach now is probably, I now divide my classes. I’ve got one for feature, one for TV. And I think there’s even more to say, especially as TV has evolved. But yes, it can work for feature people. It can work for TV people. I’ve had novelists tell me it works for them. People who write shorts, people who do web content, etc.
Ashley: I’m curious, do you see TV writers versus feature writers? Do you see it as a personality thing? As some people may be a little more adept at one or the other? Or is it more of a story thing? This person comes up with this type of story? And that would be better suited for television? What are some of your thoughts on that? And this is really sort of gets at when a new-screenwriters coming into the space. And they’re wondering should I pursue feature, should I pursue TV, what is sort of your advice?
Pilar: So, I don’t think you have to pick right away I think eventually TV or feature picks you, whatever you whatever project really takes hold. That’s the thing that an agent or a manager or somebody who represents you and wants to push your work forward will ask for more of, but in the beginning, people tend to write whatever they sort of feel like writing, the thing I would say is back to you know is a personality or story its story. You if you have a story that’s very goal oriented, okay, very goal, to process to outcome oriented, okay, like, what does somebody want? How do they do it? And how do they get it? That’s probably a feature. Okay, if it is world and character, meaning, you know, what is this world that lends itself to conflict? And who are the people in it where you can mind stories in this world week after week? That’s a TV show. So that’s what I asked my writers to think of before they’re going into a project to determine whether it’s feature TV.
Ashley: Gotcha, gotcha. And this might be a good time to talk about some of your classes, maybe you can tell us a little bit about that. What are your classes all about? When are they where are they? And how can people learn more about those?
Pilar: So, I used to have a writer studio in Studio City. When COVID hit like everybody else, I had to shut my doors. But it opened up a world of possibilities online that I’ve really been enjoying, I love teaching on Zoom. And a lot of people hate it. I love it, because I had taught all over the world. And it allowed me to bring in all those people from around the world into online zoom classes. And that’s what I do now. So, I teach a writing feature film class, writing TV class, a rewrite techniques class, and occasionally a story analysis class. And I believe I’m going to be adding something new in 2022 that I’m still brewing, so I’m not going to say right now. The next class is a rewrite techniques class. And anyone at any level really can take it. You don’t have to have a completed screenplay or tele-play, it will just strengthen your tech your writing techniques in general.
Ashley: Gotcha. Gotcha. And how can people find those just your website, PilarAlessandra.com?
Pilar: No, my website is onthepage.tv. So, anything that I’m associated with is on that Page, the podcast, all that stuff. So, it’s onthepage.tv
Ashley: Gotcha, gotcha. And what do you have coming up on your podcast?
Pilar: On my podcast? Boy, okay, well, let’s see. We just finished our logline competition, which everybody who listens to the podcast always waits for every year. We had 85 submissions this year. And it was really fun to go over them because we could talk about the strength of the written logline, but also the strength of the idea. So that was fun. I have Lee Jessup, who is a career coach who comes in once a year as well, to give sort of a State of the industry. Like what were the changes this year, and what does she see going forward. So, that will be on New Year’s Eve. And then got a couple of guests lined up that as usual, our you know, writers, producers, some managers are coming in and occasionally I’ll just do a podcast myself. That is all about craft.
Ashley: Gotcha, gotcha. So, I’m curious. And that sounds like a great episode with Lee Jessup. I’ve had her on my podcast. So, I know her, I’ll definitely check that episode out. What are some things that you’ve seen both for the benefit, like, there’s some things in the 20 year career, things that have changed that you say, for the benefit has been good for writers, and there’s some things that have changed that maybe have been detrimental to writers?
Pilar: For the benefit, it’s all of the content that that’s out there. There are so many opportunities. I mean, 10 times as many as when I was starting teaching, it was just the big studios. And there was cable, I wasn’t, you know, not a dinosaur, but I mean, everything blew up, right? So that’s wonderful. And I love it, because there’s something for everybody. And there’s a producer for every project now, you know, people are always worried, like, I have to, like is a commercial, it’s like, well, commercial for which audience, you know, which producer, somebody is going to find it and love it. So that’s good. I would say the bad is a, again, this idea of formula as you know this idea that there’s one way to write, you know, you think with all these different styles out there, and all this content, people would understand it’s no, it’s completely opposite. There are a million ways to write. So, there’s that. And also, I think people have to watch out for nostalgia, not making it their projects derivative. So sometimes people will be like I’m paying homage to, but they’re really just sort of stealing from their favourite movie. You know, these are movie lines that are coming out of people’s mouths. They’re not your lines. And I love that, you know, people are such fans, but they have to also be careful to make things their own.
Ashley: Yeah, yeah, for sure. And so, okay, so it sounds like onthepage.tv is the main website, how can people find you on Twitter?
Pilar: I’m never gonna make anybody spell my name, right? It’s too quickly, though. It’s always onthepage. It’s onthepage on Twitter, on Instagram, and on Facebook @onthepage.
Ashley: Perfect, perfect. And I just like to wrap up these interviews by asking my guest, is there anything you’ve seen recently that you thought maybe was a little under the radar that would be good for screenwriters to check out? You know, Hulu, Netflix, HBO, anything out there recently?
Pilar: This is where I drove flag because I’ve only seen everything and I can remember nothing.
Ashley: Well, what’s something you’ve watched just recently? It doesn’t have to be that profound. But what is something you’ve just enjoyed recently?
Pilar: Last night, I watched the Jane Campion, Benedict Cumberbatch, power of the dog. That movie was really interesting. I don’t know if it’s everybody’s cup of tea. But I like being surprised. And I was happy to say I was surprised. So, I don’t know if I’m going to give it like a good like, everybody has to go see it. But if you’re interested in like, I want to just like, talk my way through a movie and try and figure this out and talk about it with somebody and you know, one of those kinds of thoughtful movies. Power the dog, check it out.
Ashley: Power the dog. Perfect. Good recommendation. Pilar, I really appreciate you coming on and talking with today. Good luck getting this book done. And I look forward to hearing from you in the future.
Pilar: Thank you so much.
Ashley: Thank you, will talk to you later.
A quick plug for the SYS screenwriting analysis service, it’s a really economical way to get a high-quality professional evaluation on your screenplay. When you buy our three pack, you get evaluations at just $67 per script for feature films, and just $55 for teleplays. All the readers have professional experience reading for studios, production companies, contests and agencies. You can read a short bio on each reader on our website, and you can pick the reader who you think is the best fit for your script. Turnaround time is usually just a few days but rarely more than a week. The readers will evaluate your script on six key factors concept, character, structure, marketability, tone, and overall craft which includes formatting spelling and grammar. Every script will get a great pass consider or recommend, which should help you roughly understand where your script might rank if you were to submit it to a production company or agency. We can provide an analysis on features or television scripts. We also do proof-reading without any analysis. We will also look at a treatment or outline and give you the same analysis on it. So, if you’re looking to vet some of your project ideas, this is a great way to do it. We will also write your logline and synopsis for you. You can add this logline and synopsis writing service to an analysis or you can simply purchase this service as a standalone product.
As a bonus, if your screenplay gets a recommend or a consider from one of our readers, you get to list the screenplay in the SYS select database, which is a database for producers to find screenplays and a big part of our SYS select programme, producers are in the database searching for material on a daily basis, so it’s another great way to get your material in front of them. As a further bonus, if your script gets a recommend from one of our readers, your screenplay will get included in our monthly best of newsletter. Each month, we send out a newsletter that highlights the best screenplays that have come through our script analysis service. This is a monthly newsletter that goes out to our list of over 400 producers who are actively looking for material. So again, this is another great way to get your material out there. So, if you want a professional evaluation of your screenplay at a very reasonable price, check out www.sellingyourscreenplay.com/consultants. Again, that’s sellingyourscreenplay.com/consultants.
On the next episode of the podcast, I’m going to be interviewing actor, writer director, Kent Moran. He’s doing a big online acting event, which I think might be interesting to screenwriters. So, we talked about that a little bit. But he’s also written and directed a number of features. So, we talked about how he got those films produced. And he’s also an industry judge of SYS a six-figure screenplay contest. So, if you’re interested in learning more about our industry judges, this is a great episode to listen to. So, keep an eye out for that episode next week. So here is my Tik Tok from a few days ago where I’m reviewing the new Netflix movie, don’t look up. So, I got about 15 minutes into this film before I turned it off. This is a screenwriter’s review of the new Netflix film don’t look up and there’s going to be some spoilers. In screenwriting, one of the first pieces of advice you get is make sure your first 12 pages hook the reader and for me, this was the biggest problem with this film. After 15 minutes. There was nothing about this film that made me want to keep watching. I think structurally, the screenwriters whiffed, typically the inciting incident is around page 12. And essentially with this film, it was on page one, the scientists discovered there’s an asteroid headed for the earth. So, I think the screenwriters probably thought they were okay since it was so early. But here’s the problem. The premise is so concise and integral to the story, everyone watching this film already knows what’s going to happen. So, watching it unfold isn’t the least bit interesting. You can’t let your audience get that far ahead of the story or they will be bored, which I was. Even the performances felt tired and cliched. We’ve seen so many of these characters a million times, the bumbling scientist, the young hippie intern who smokes pot, the totally detached White House aide who doesn’t give a shit. And the vacuous president who cares more about her hair than an asteroid that’s about to destroy the planet just seemed really over the top and unhinged, just unreal to me. There’s a long scene where the scientist and intern are waiting to talk to the President and they keep getting pushed back. I’m so sick of seeing this sort of incompetent bureaucracy in real life. I don’t need to see it in my entertainment. Watching a movie is supposed to be fun. I literally found this scene frustrating to watch.
Anyway, that’s our show. Thank you for listening.