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CLOSE TO THE EDGE is a character driven drama. It explores the themes of believing in dreams and making them come true. It also examines themes about trust and abandonment, as well as second chances and making the right life choices. It’s the type of story that sends an appreciated message about how one can overcome adversity regardless of one’s background. The story centers on Ray, who is determined to make a difference for young, disadvantaged teens. Once from the ghetto, he returns. Ray is driven by his need for redemption; not there for his son, he now wants to reach out to other teens. He sees them as representing his son. The goal is clear and the stakes are personal. Eventually, the stakes rise when Ray is accused of sexual abuse.…show more content…
While this is an important message and there’s an attempt to leave the audience feeling inspired, the script would benefit from more development. First, there’s a defined three-act structure. The opening sets the tone and the idea that Ray wants to be successful and own his own company. However, the concern about the opening is, that it doesn’t establish enough of Ray’s ordinary world in the hood or ghetto. In fact, it’s not even clear that he lives in the ghetto. The audience doesn’t get a good sense of what his life is like. So when the script transitions to his present day life, there’s really no major divergence between his old world and his new world, because because the audience hasn’t seen his old world. Thus, consider describing his world in the hood, before transitioning to the current storyline. It doesn’t have to be long, but it should be…show more content…
Thus, reconsider if the sexual abuse direction is the correct plotline to go with vs. the setup made in the first act. Ray is clearly the protagonist who has an external goal to help kids from his old neighborhood. He gives up a lot to do this. He has great inner struggle about not being a father to his son. However, the events with Tony all happen too quickly. He learns he has a son and immediately leaves to find him, although his mother is dying. This makes Ray less likable. Give him more resistance about having a son. When he does find Tony, Tony almost immediately dies. Because it’s all so quick, it’s really challenging to develop any emotional investment in these series of events. It might be different if Ray knew Wanda was pregnant, but left her when he was a teen to follow his own dreams and was never a full-time father. Maybe he only sent cards and never visited his son. Then maybe he hears about his son’s death. It’s a creative choice, and another possible way to structure

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