Family Values | Skillshare Projects



Family Values

Family Values 2nd Draft

LOGLINE:  After a life of privilege and power, a man discovers he isn't who he thinks he is.


Family Values 1st Draft


I chose the stories of Elsa Wertman and Hamilton Greene from the Spoon River Anthology as the subject of my short.  I found the story that must have been behind their lives intriguing.

I also found it very interesting that on Hamilton's epitaph it said "I WAS the only child..." and not
"I was the only child...".   It made me wonder if the point was a literal one pointing out that at some point he must have been made aware of his true lineage.  The other possibility, as I saw it, was that for a period of time he was an only child and ultimately became a big brother to a sibling.

I followed the advice of our class videos to keep a low budget short heavy on dialog and short on action.

I look forward to your feedback.

From Spoon River Anthology

Elsa Wertman

I was a peasant girl from Germany,
Blue-eyed, rosy, happy and strong.
And the first place I worked was at Thomas Greene's.
On a summer's day when she was away
He stole into the kitchen and took me
Right in his arms and kissed me on my throat,
I turning my head. Then neither of us
Seemed to know what happened.
And I cried for what would become of me.
And cried and cried as my secret began to show.
One day Mrs. Greene said she understood,
And would make no trouble for me,
And, being childless, would adopt it.
(He had given her a farm to be still. )
So she hid in the house and sent out rumors,
As if it were going to happen to her.
And all went well and the child was born--
They were so kind to me.
Later I married Gus Wertman, and years passed.
But-- at political rallies when sitters-by thought I was crying
At the eloquence of Hamilton Greene--
That was not it. No! I wanted to say:
That's my son!
That's my son.

Hamilton Greene

I WAS the only child of Frances Harris of Virginia
And Thomas Greene of Kentucky,
Of valiant and honorable blood both.
To them I owe all that I became,
Judge, member of Congress, leader in the State.
From my mother I inherited
Vivacity, fancy, language;
From my father will, judgment, logic.
All honor to them
For what service I was to the people!


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