Recently we ran the First Draft Contest with our friends of Circalit in the UK. Weekly on Thursdays we publish the loglines from participants of the contest and the Judges give us their considered feedback.
by The Judges
If you have an opinion on any of these synopses or the feedback from the judges, please share it with us in the comments below. Please keep the discussion constructive. Even if your first instinct may be subjective, try to give us as objective a reply as possible. The objective is to all (that includes us, judges) learn from the exercise.
A woman shows a group of home invaders that blind doesn’t mean defenceless.
The judges’ verdict:
Dave: “I don’t think that this is a perfect logline but I instantly know exactly the genre, the antagonist and her flaw. I can see the end and I have an idea how she will defeat the home invaders. It appeals to our primal instincts and fear and I would watch/read this. I do think it could be better, for example giving her some characteristics- not just blind- and giving the invaders some purpose. Why are they attacking that house in particular? Also, why should the character act now, why not hide until they have gone- giving her some motivation and ‘why now,’ would give it some punch. In general though I like the idea and as a logline, it is economical with words.”
“I do think it could be better, for example giving her some characterstics- not just blind- and giving the invaders some purpose.”
Steven: “Interesting and clear premise. Although would have preferred to know a bit more about the protagonist and also the antagonist. Also about what twists are there to ‘fil’ a feature length film. ( Probably works better as a short).”
“…would have preferred to know a bit more about the protagonist and also the antagonist”
Hannah: “A stronger depiction of the ‘woman’ character would benefit this logline.”
Family By Heart
This is a drama about an African American man who reluctantly adopts a Caucasian English boy now living in America. Troubles begin when the boys biological dad returns.
The judges’ verdict:
Adrian “This is a typical ‘adopted child meeting his biological parents,’ drama, with the race issue giving the story some complexity. If race is an important element in the story, or if it is some comment on race relations in America, then maybe it might be better to frame the logline along those lines.”
” If race is an important element in the story…then maybe it might be better to frame the logline along those lines”
Steven “Not a compelling premise. Nothing distinctive about this concept versus all the other ‘race relations,’ films that have already been made (particularly American ones).”
“Not a compelling premise”
Jack: “This looks like a good story, but starting a logline with ‘This is a drama about…” doesn’t work. How about ‘When an African American man reluctantly adopts…’?”