Monday, February 9, 2009

Five By Five

My exercise today is to write five pet peeves accompanied by five log lines or mini summaries loosely based on them:

1: Being blamed for something I didn't do.

2: People who think anything but a g-string constitutes granny-panties.

3: Parents who cannot stand up to the mind games of their three year old.

4: Co-workers who get away with laziness because they possess a minimal amount of charm.

5: Unsolicited advice on a consistent basis

1: A woman is found jobless after she is accused of embezzling large sums from her company. A few days later, agents show up on her doorstep questioning her about her connection to a terrorist cell. Soon after she is accused of the murder of her elderly grandmother, whom she cares for. Not trusting anyone, the woman goes on the run, in an attempt to clear her name and track down the person who has set her up.

2: Local DJ and avid womanizer rates his conquests on his popular "hot-or-not" website. His plans for blogging domination are thrown askew when he falls for the Queen of the Cat-Ladies, and his priorities begin to shift.

3: Welcome to baby Stepford, where the kids are in charge and Cheerios are serious weapons. Don't expect cuddles and colouring, these kids have worn down their parents through months of parental weakness. They hold the strings now, and plan to keep it that way.

4: Wilson Wicks has spent his whole life doing things by the book, and being walked all over. His best assignments given to the pretty girls, overlooked for a promotion, given instead to the lazy, yet charming bus boy, critisized by the parental unit for being less athletic, and more antisocial. When Wilson finds a manual at the used bookstore on how to charm his way through life, he begins to notice a dramatic change in how others respond to him.

5: Abby Watts, known as Dear Abby by her friends is the queen of friendly advice, even when its not asked for. Solving peoples problems is Abby's heroin, until the day she recieves an anonymous document on her doorstep, outline all her shortcomings and offering a suggestive "fix" for each mistake.

OK, so some of these are uber lame, but it's a valuable exercise. Favorites? Least Favorites (*ahem* Baby Stepford). Let me know.


  1. 1 and 2 are awesome! They're totally something that I would read. Even just those little summaries raise a lot of questions about details, and that's usually what draws me into a story.
    And that does seem like a very interesting exercise. It's something I should look into doing too.

  2. Those ideas wouldn't do too badly at Insight!

    Wait, that's not an insult. ;)

  3. Ha, even Baby Stepford? My crowning achievement? Well, hey, I'm open to any devo deals Insight wants to offer ;)

  4. Honestly, just looking at these as loglines, I'd have to say that 3 and 5 probably work the best.

    1 seems confused. What is it about? Embezzlement? Terrorism? Murdering your grandmother? All of those could be movies, but together it's just too much. Also reminded me of 'Eagle Eye' a lot, but that's neither here nor there...

    The beginning and end of 2 seem like a typical RomCom (player boy meets girl of his dreams and gives up his player ways), but what threw me off was the bit in the middle about blogging. Is that his "hot or not" website? How does his "plans for blogging domination" jive with the meet-cute romance with the Cat Lady? Is she a blogger too? Clarify the connection and it'll work.

    4, again, suffers from a lack of clarity / focus. I'd pick one, maybe two, things from that laundry list and craft the rest of the logline around it. The point of the movie would be what happens once he's found the magic book, not everything that led up to his finding the book (which is kind of how this logline reads).

    The reason 3 works for me is largely because the way you've written it is really entertaining and evocative. It evokes a series of really clear mental pictures of what the movie might be, though really I don't really know what it's about. And it has a great title ("Baby Stepford")!

    5 works for the same reason, it's just super clear and concise. Queen of Advice gets anonymous advice on how to fix her own life. Simple, concise, and something that is pitchable in a sentence.


    Anyways, cool exercise! I'll have to give it a try sometime.

  5. Thanks for the feedback. I'd be happy with even ONE positive one out of that mess, and the messy headspace I was in when I wrote them. I appreciate the input - thanks!