|Title: See You Around|
|Author(s): Amin Osman
|Locale: College campus|
Analyst: Lily Hamilton
Log Line: College student Nicole begins seeing an odd classmate everywhere, leading the audience to believe he is stalking her – only to find out Nicole is the one stalking him.
|Hook (High Concept)||x|
NICOLE, a college student in her early 20s, is sitting on a bench in the park when MAX, another student at the school, runs her foot over with his bike. The two have a conversation and realize they met at a comedy show during their freshman orientation.
Nicole visits her friend TESS and Tess’ boyfriend, STEVE. She tells them about her interaction with Max, and Tess says that she is suspicious of Max’s motives. Nicole seems to agree.
Nicole runs into Max again at a coffee shop, and they re-introduce themselves. Then, Nicole starts seeing him everywhere — at the library, on campus at night and at the gym. She becomes more shaken up with each interaction.
Nicole and Tess get ready for a party together. Nicole brings up Max again, and Tess says that she will confront him if she sees him. Nicole says she has the situation under control and the two leave for the party. Steve is not in attendance.
At the party, Nicole and Tess realize they don’t know anyone there. Tess wanders off to get drunk and Nicole confronts Max, who she sees at the party chatting with a GIRL. Nicole tells Max she knows he is stalking her but Max denies it. The two continue their discussion outside the party on the front porch, and a masked thief tries to steal Nicole’s purse. Max punches the thief, who runs away, and returns Nicole’s purse to her. Overcome with emotion, Nicole starts crying and thanks Max. The two agree to go on a date sometime and Nicole goes home.
Steve is at Nicole’s house when she returns, and tells her “you’re welcome.” It is heavily implied that he was the masked thief, especially after Nicole thanks him. Steve leaves, and Nicole logs onto her computer. While it loads, Nicole opens her closet and reveals that, behind her clothes, the wall is covered in photos of Max. Her computer finally loads to her homepage: Max’s Facebook page. It becomes clear that Nicole is the one stalking Max, and the final scene fades to black.
See You Around combines elements of romantic comedies and thrillers to turn what could be a cute boy-meets-girl story into a suspenseful one, in which Nicole’s paranoia that she is being stalked becomes understood as fear that she will be found out as Max’s stalker. While the basic plot idea is effective, the way it is conveyed needs work.
The dialogue needs the most help. It does not accurately portray the way college students talk and creates hollow characters. Some examples include Max and Nicole’s first meeting, when Max attempts to explain and apologize for running over Nicole’s foot, Tess and Steve’s discussion about Woodstock, Nicole and Tess’ interaction before they go to the party and Nicole’s confrontation with Max outside. The writer uses wordy and awkward phrases, seemingly in an attempt to make the characters quirky and humorous, and it falls flat. The dialogue as is would distract from the plot and the tense nature of the story — being stalked should seem scary, not cutesy.
The characters are also problematic. While the twist at the end of the story explains Nicole’s strange behavior, Max’s behavior comes across as odd without explanation. He’s supposed to the straight man. While it is weird that he and Nicole often show up in the same place, Max should either be more neutral or have a reason for acting strange around Nicole. Alternatively, it should be more obvious that Max is creeped out by Nicole. Tess, presumably the comic relief of the story, has very little substance. In the script she is described as “best friend material” — she needs to be more than just a trope. Finally, while Steve is a minor character, he has a major role at the end of the story. There is no explanation for why he helps Nicole, or if he even knows that she is stalking Max. His motives need to be explored and expounded upon in the script.
There are some plot holes in the story as well — the writer never explains why Nicole is obsessed with Max, why she thinks confronting him about stalking her would be effective, how Nicole knows where Max is at all times or why she thinks that Steve pretending to rob her would be effective in getting Max to like her. Nicole’s motive is also unclear. Why is she stalking Max in the first place? Is she in love with him? Has she been stalking him since they met during freshman orientation? In that case, has she been stalking him for four years, since they are now in their 20s? Why is Max just now noticing her wherever he goes? While some questions need to be left unanswered to keep the ending a surprise, not being able to answer these questions after knowing the ending means that there are plot holes.
The plot is dramatic, if not a little overdone. Cleaned up, it could be very suspenseful. The length is appropriate for this type of story — the audience does not need to know every single detail of every single time Nicole and Max meet. However, it is important to include Nicole’s motives at the very least, since she is the main character. The plot is fine, but the script definitely needs to be rewritten.
NOT RECOMMENDED FOR PRODUCTION