Elliot Maxwell

Actor, Writer, Director

19

56

Consequence

 Step 1: Selected Text:

Ollie McGee ( by Edward Lee Masters)

HAVE you seen walking through the village
A Man with downcast eyes and haggard face?
That is my husband who, by secret cruelty
Never to be told, robbed me of my youth and my beauty; Till at last, wrinkled and with yellow teeth,
And with broken pride and shameful humility,
I sank into the grave.
But what think you gnaws at my husband’s heart?
The face of what I was, the face of what he made me! These are driving him to the place where I lie.
In death, therefore, I am avenged.

I chose this text because I think it tells a harrowing tale of the terrible consequences of relationships, of how one can lose their youth, beauty, and life through being sucked dry from an abusive relationship. I also like how the ending points to revenge, and how while Fletcher can be seen as a inhumane abusive character, the audience can feel bad for him because he is being driven to death by his guilt. I wanted to explore what can cause two people who love each other to do terrible things to each other, and what is the dark underbelly of love? I also wanted to explore the consequences of a death, and in particular a suicide. What does witnessing a suicide, or in this case causing a suicide, do to a person? 

In this story, there are a lot of interesting points to explore and develop. 

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Step 2: Drafting my Screenplay

FIRST DRAFT (July 9th, 2014):

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B7VE8Z4xEJSXbDJSSUFJeW5DbkE/edit

SECOND DRAFT (July 16 2014):

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B7VE8Z4xEJSXeXNOUHNJUGZ6MUU/edit

Notes: Thanks so much for all the feedback on the First Draft! I tried to dig a lot more into the characters and really flesh out the relationship this time! Let me know if you think it works! 

THIRD DRAFT (FINAL DRAFT) (July 24th 2014):

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B7VE8Z4xEJSXeWJSTkRtZ1NfMGs/edit

Notes: Thanks for all the feedback on the Second Draft, I am really happy with this one. The only problem is due to getting rid of the Intercut and instead using Scene Headings, this added additional space to my script, so it pushed me to 11 pages. But the 11th page is only a little bit of dialogue, and not a full page, so I hope that's fine! And it was due to formatting, not too much writing, so I think the film would still be only 10 minutes on screen. Anyways, hope that's okay!

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Step 3; The Logline: 

 An alcoholic husband with a tormented past, the instigator of an emotionally abusive relationship, is stricken with guilt after his wife's suicide.

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Inspiration: 

Blue Valentine (especially Ryan Gosling's character in the present where he's very emotionally abusive)

V in Orange is the New Black (extremely emotionally manipulating, complex, selfish) 

Hero Brother by Sarah Neufeld; this album captures the feel; 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jt4bvacwc9I

The Garden by July Talk (the feel of this song, especially "this ain't Johnny Carson, I've got thoughts that aren't my own") 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCN6OlpVuxw&feature=kp

For the suicide scene, I'm imaginging the feel of the hanging scene in Girl, Interrupted

The feel and the build up of Another Love by Tom Odell. This is just such a beautiful but also angry and intense song, and that's the feel I want for Consequence. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwpMEbgC7DA

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Characters;

For my second draft, I want to dig more into the characters of Ollie and Fletcher, and flesh out their relationship more. Here are some ideas I have come up with on the backstory of Fletcher and Ollie

FLETCHER:

He was raised by just his mother in a very difficult financial environment. When he was nine he was sexually abused by his 16 year old cousin. He was told that if he told anyone, his cousin would kill him. Fletcher repressed this memory, and invested in a relationship with Ollie, the most beautiful girl at school. Fletcher fell madly in love with Ollie, and they got married when she was 18 and he was 20. When Fletcher was 40, his mother, who he was really close to, died. This triggers Fletcher to start drinking, and he starts drinking to the point where he blacksout almost every night. When he is close to blacking out, the rage truly explodes out of him and he becomes a completely different person. He basically becomes the devil, being extremely cruel and physically abusive. All of this rage is stemming from the abuse, but this is not something he consciously knows. Fletcher feels awful in the morning, and doesn't want to hurt Ollie because he does truly love her. However, the addiction and seduction of alcohol is strong, and it's hard for him to pull away. He attempts at many times to overcome his alcoholism, but fails, and on one drunken night where he is especially cruel, and physically abusive, and for the first time comes very close to trying to rape her, Ollie runs upstairs and hangs herself. Fletcher has spent 3 years since her death blaming himself and his alcoholism for the suicide. He is also attempting at coming to terms with the abuse that happened to him so long ago, and with the combination of this and the guilt, he has many suicidal thought attacks and self-hatred. 

OLLIE: 

Ollie had a very physically, emotionally and sexually abusive father. Between the ages 7-12, she was sexually abused by her father. She tried to tell her mother, but her mother would refuse to believe her. The sexual abuse ended when her father died when he went swimming one night when he was really drunk. Ollie saw what alcohol did to her father, and decided she would never ever drink. Ollie fell in love with Fletcher because he was the kindest, and most confident boys at her school. When they got married, they vowed they would always love and care for each other. Ollie opened up to Fletcher about her abuse, and he told her that he would always be there for her, and she could always trust him. Ollie had one suicide attempt when she was 17, where she tried to kill herself in the river next to the meadow. Fletcher saved her, and said that he would always make sure she would love breathing and feeling alive. Since the first suicidal attempt, and getting married to Fletcher, she hadn't had many suicidal thoughts. Her suicidal thoughts started up again when Fletcher started drinking and this triggered her father's abuse. When Fletcher got angry drunk, she not only saw the devil in Fletcher, she also was drawn back to the devil in her father. Therefore, whenever Fletcher was drunk this was absolutely awful for Ollie, and she started having viscious sucidal thoughts. Ollie tied the noose, and planned her suicide for when she needed to escape from Fletcher, but never knew if it would happen or not. When Fletcher tries to rape her, and he literally becomes the devil her father was, she is forced to kill herself. This is the last time Ollie will let someone abuse and manipulate her trust. 

My aim is to explore how different people deal with sexual abuse, and the consequences of our actions. 

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