Screenplay Review: The Death of Jeremy
Written by David A. Seader, The Death of Jeremy is a full-length drama screenplay that tells the story of Kyle Shaw, a man who is haunted by memories of the time he spent as part of a class of gifted children who secretly helped craft the technology, culture, and commerce of the 1990s.
The story takes place in Los Angeles at two-time points - present and 1989 and describes the process that a class of 11-year-old students goes through at Pacifica School. The content that is taught there is different from what is taught in any other school, and the experiments done there can change the world, but can also become tragic for some of the participants.
The non-linear narrative structure moves between two time periods throughout the story, and in fact, the plot is built and developed in parallel as it follows a group of children in 1989 and the people they have become today. The recurring transition between the two time periods creates a great deal of interest in the story and the main characters, without confusing the reader too much.
The characters are well written. Each character is presented clearly and very quickly the reader connects to the positive characters in the story and dislikes the behavior of other characters. Kyle Shaw leads the plot in both time periods, but many more characters get a lot of "screen time," like Charlotte Roberts and her brother Ryan Roberts who tries to prove a control theory through electro-shock therapy, or fascinating characters like Sydney Grace, Andy Bujy, Erica Reiser, Mr. Sobb and his daughter Lynn.
Another interesting character who creates empathy and compassion is Christopher Gerry, on whom some of the experiments are performed.
While the dialogue usually flaws, some of the dialogue is repetitive and could have been shortened and tweaked a little bit. At some points, it's hard to identify the character speaking just by reading their line as the way some of them speak sounds the same. The dialogue in the dramatic scenes is well written and makes the reader feel the emotions in the scene.
In general, most of the dialogue is clever ("This is why I love you. You'd rather kill someone who cares about you than help someone who doesn't") and sometimes even amusing ("No more hidden government repositories; No porn archives!; No urinals!").
We are all familiar with the theory that our world is developed and controlled by a small group of people or companies that drive the economy and set world orders. In his screenplay "The Death of Jeremy", David A. Seader uses this theory to tell a sweeping and refreshing story that will make readers experience up close a group of people who have done so, and the implications for group members in particular and the world in general.