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|Introduction: They Were All Successful||ix|
Posted May 23, 2001
These stories are superb, and should have been produced. Each is well written, and in the case of American Psyche, very suspenseful. Mr. Taylor's Introduction is also illuminating. His admonishment that 'you get what you pay for' and 'if you're any good, you will be ripped off' are good advice for hopeful writers. Very well done!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 20, 2001
'3 Screenplays In Search of a Lens' was recommended by a friend of mine who is also a struggling screenwriter. Having just finished it, I can say that the forward alone is worth the price of admission. Taylor, a money-making screenwriter, carefully details all the dead ends, scams and runarounds which he experienced at the hands of Hollywood film companies, producers, wannabes and rip-off artists before finally selling a screenplay. Every aspiring screenwriter should read this book--it will save you years of wasted time. Taylor candidly shares his disappointments before treating us to his successes: three oft-optioned but unproduced screenplays which are text-book studies in powerful, economical screenwriting. 'Unknown Causes' is a Rockford-style mystery with a journalist-hero in search of who (or what) is responsible for a series of eerie cattle mutilations. 'Psyche' pits a a deeply troubled female news-anchor and a reluctant, burned-out psychic against a superhuman serial killer. Creepy Lecter-like dialogue and compelling action sequences keep this thriller careening toward a shocking revelation. My personal favorite however is 'American Mythic'--a rousing western and homage to the classic John Ford cavalry films. Disguised as a straight-forward adventure story, this deep and affecting screenplay awakens us to the often-ignored damage wrought by imperialism. On a much more profound level however, 'American Mythic' celebrates the nearly-forgotten attributes which made America great: loyalty, family bonds, accountability, courage, and heroism--qualities that seem so distantly ingrained in our basic tapestry that they seem fresh and newly inspiring in Taylor1s expert hands. Three tales well-told and an insider's look at how Hollywood works. This book belongs in every writer's library!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 15, 2001
I actually didn¿t buy this book, but I¿m going to. It was loaned to me by a friend. I¿ve purchased other books containing produced scripts, and I¿ve downloaded them from the internet, but this was the first time that I got a chance to read screenplays that were successful enough for a production company to pay for, but weren¿t produced for some reason. Richard Taylor, the author, is not a big-name screenwriter, as he points out in his foreward. He¿s very experienced in the way Hollywood works, though, and he tells a number of stories about his experiences that I found enlightening. He answers the one question I¿ve heard aspiring screenwriters ask the most, about having material stolen. He¿s had several screenplays ripped off and provides advice about what to do when that happens. He also throws in a little philosophy about it, too. Of the three screenplays, I liked American Mythic the best. It¿s better than most of the produced screenplays I¿ve read. Actually, on second thought, it¿s the best script I¿ve ever read. Psyche has a great beginning and some good moments, although it lacks enough action for today¿s audiences. It¿s a little too people-oriented. Unknown Causes shows its television pilot origins. The author says that Unknown Causes was ripped off for a major feature film, but he only hints about which movie that was. If you¿re a screenwriter want-to-be, or someone with a casual interest in writing scripts or in Hollywood itself, then I¿d say it's a must buyWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.