Read the black list (TV) with its analysis


See Full Analysis here

Scene 1 -  The Surrender
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 8
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 10
  • Dialogue: 8
THE BLACKLIST


Written by
Jon Bokenkamp




December 28, 2012
TEASER

We hear RESTLESS VOICES. Screaming children. The swell of a
hundred fighting languages tells us we’re stuck in line at...

INT. U.S. CUSTOMS - DAY

The place is packed. Smells like travel. Among this dizzy
mob, one very composed American commands our attention. He
approaches the window and opens his passport --

-- Meet RAYMOND “RED” REDDINGTON (55). Dignified. Worldly.
He wears a perfectly tailored suit and carries himself with
a sense of purpose.

CUSTOMS AGENT
Where you been, sir?

RED
Singapore. Business.

CUSTOMS AGENT
And where we headed?

RED
Home.

Red smiles. His confidence is magnetic. As the agent STAMPS
his passport, Mel Torme’s driving “Comin’ Home Baby” sends us
hurtling through:

EXT. WASHINGTON, D.C. - DAY

We dance through the capitol city. The National Mall. The
Lincoln Memorial. The pace is energetic and bright as --

-- Red is chauffeured through the city by A MAN IN A GREY
FLANNEL SUIT. Passing monuments reflect in the glass of his
limo as Red rolls down the window, drinks in his hometown.

ON PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE...

Red steps from the car. Finds himself standing in the shadow
of a daunting concrete structure. He looks up, delighted to
see the words etched in the facade: J. Edgar Hoover Building.

INSIDE F.B.I. HEADQUARTERS...

Red strides through the lobby with purpose. He’s been here
before. Belongs here. Finds his way to a FEMALE GUARD at
the security desk.

RED
Good afternoon. I’m here to see
Assistant Director Harold Cooper.
2.

GUARD
Do you have an appointment?

RED
Tell him it’s Raymond Reddington.

The Guard scowls and calls upstairs. Red waits. Takes in
the details around him; the bulletproof glass, the American
flag, the display of the “Ten Most Wanted” on the lobby wall.

Red takes off his jacket, folds it neatly, and places it on
the ground next to his briefcase.

The Female Guard listens to the voice on the other end of the
line, watching Red as --

-- he lowers himself to his knees over the F.B.I. seal in the
terrazzo floor. A passing AGENT sees this. Looks uneasy.

The poor Guard on the phone can hardly comprehend what she’s
hearing. She follows Red’s eyes. Sees what Red sees. He’s
staring at a picture of HIS OWN FACE among...

THE TEN MOST WANTED.

Red CLASPS HIS HANDS behind his head. Closes his eyes. The
Guard calls for backup, but before she can muster the words --

-- ALARMS SOUND. METAL CURTAINS drop over the windows.

The entire F.B.I. goes into ‘LOCKDOWN’ as F.B.I. POLICE swarm
Red, WEAPONS drawn and SCREAMING into their radios.

But Red’s calm. Proud perhaps. As he’s thrown to the ground
his expression tells us this is a day Red has anticipated for
years. We DRIFT UP, over the chaos, past the American flag.

The F.B.I.’s NUMBER FOUR MOST WANTED has just surrendered.

INT. FT. MEADE / N.S.A. - SAME

A winded STAFFER rushes into a packed boardroom. Pulls aside
ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF COUNTERTERRORISM, HAROLD COOPER (52).
He’s worn by life. A natural cynic. The Staffer whispers.

COOPER
(thunderstruck)
How is that even possible?!

INT. ROOFTOP / F.B.I. HEADQUARTERS - SAME

A Sikorsky S-76 lands and delivers Cooper who is met by AGENT
DONALD RESSLER (42), square-jawed and seasoned. This job is
his life. They duck the rotors, shouting over the chopper --
3.

RESSLER
Ressler. Washington Field office.
I’m the case agent on Reddington.

COOPER
When did this happen?

RESSLER
Under an hour ago.

COOPER
We confirm it’s actually him?

RESSLER
It’s him alright. Prints match.
Tattoos. He even volunteered
classified details about our
Brussels mission in ‘08.

COOPER
What happened in Brussels?

RESSLER
Sir? We tried to kill him, sir.

INT. SECURITY NEST / F.B.I. - SAME

F.B.I. TECHs sit behind glowing control panels. Monitors
cover the walls. The screens depict various angles of Red
chained to the floor. Cooper nears a monitor, captivated.

COOPER
Christ, it really is him.

He turns to the glass and approaches Ressler. They watch Red
like a fish in a jar. Even in captivity, Red carries himself
with unquestionable presence.

RESSLER
Came in with a briefcase containing
every alias he’s ever used. Most
of ‘em we’ve never heard of.

COOPER
What’s he want?

RESSLER
Don’t know. Won’t talk. The guy’s
a goddamned stone.

Cooper watches Red, unsettled, as we hear --

RESSLER (O.S.)
Raymond “Red” Reddington grew up
the son of an army brat...
4.
Genres: ["Crime","Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Raymond 'Red' Reddington, a notorious fugitive and one of the FBI's most wanted criminals, surrenders to the agency and is taken into custody.
Strengths "Strong character introduction, fast pacing, tension building, well-written dialogue."
Weaknesses "Lacks clear stakes or immediate conflict; some may find the plot predictable or similar to other crime dramas."
Critique Overall, this scene does a good job of introducing the main character, Raymond "Red" Reddington, and setting up the main premise of the show (that he has surrendered himself to the FBI after being on the 10 most wanted list). However, there are a few areas where the scene could be improved:

1. Show, don't tell: The opening voiceover mentions "restless voices" and "fighting languages" to convey the chaos of being in a crowded line at customs, but this could be conveyed more effectively through visual and audio cues rather than a voiceover. Instead of just hearing screaming children, we could see close-ups of irritated travelers and overhear snippets of different languages.
2. Unnecessary details: While the description of Red's appearance and demeanor is important, there are some details that could be trimmed down to make the scene more efficient. For example, we don't need to know that the "Comin' Home Baby" song is "driving" - this is a subjective description that doesn't add anything important to the scene.
3. Lack of character development: While we get a sense of Red's confidence and pride, we don't know much about him beyond that. It might be useful to include a line or two of dialogue that hints at his motivations for surrendering to the FBI.
4. Pacing: The scene goes by quickly, which is good, but it could benefit from a slight pause or beat when Red sees his own face on the most wanted list. Right now, the transition from calmly folding his jacket to being thrown to the ground happens too quickly.

These are relatively minor critiques, and overall the scene is well-written and engaging. It effectively sets up the central conflict of the show and introduces the main character in a memorable way.
Suggestions Here are some suggestions to improve the scene:

1. Cut down on excessive descriptions: The scene starts with a lot of description that might not be necessary. For example, the description of the "restless voices" and "fighting languages" could simply be replaced with "chaotic noise". Likewise, instead of describing Reddington's suit as "perfectly tailored", it could simply be described as "immaculately dressed".

2. Add more tension: While the scene sets up the premise of Reddington turning himself in, it could benefit from more tension. One way to do this could be to add some ambiguity to his motives. For instance, if the audience is unsure whether Reddington is turning himself in for altruistic or nefarious purposes, it will increase their curiosity about the character.

3. Use more visual storytelling: While there are some descriptions of what is happening, there is a lot of focus on dialogue. Using more visual storytelling to show Reddington's actions and reactions will help the audience connect with the character emotionally.

4. Heighten the stakes: While Reddington's surrender is a big deal, it could be made into a more dramatic moment by adding higher stakes. For example, if the authorities had been actively pursuing Reddington for years, or if he had committed a high-profile crime, it would add more weight to his surrender.



Scene 2 -  Introducing the Concierge of Crime
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 8
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. WAR ROOM - SAME

Ressler briefs a packed room of agents, analysts and legal
staffers. CLASSIFIED IMAGES fill giant monitors overhead.

RESSLER
...he attended West Point. Top of
his class. By thirty he was an
intelligence officer in the Army.
Made Captain. Military Liaison
Officer to the N.S.A.

It’s a life in photos, the American Dream.

RESSLER
Then, in 1990, Reddington’s headed
home to see his wife and daughter
for Christmas. He never arrived.

We see CRIME SCENE PHOTO of a snow covered hatchback on a
desolate mountain road.

RESSLER
His vehicle was discovered along a
stretch of highway thirty-three in
the Allegheny Mountains. Christmas
gifts for his wife and kid in the
back of the car.

We see snapshots of SEARCH PARTIES and NEWSPAPER HEADLINES.

RESSLER
There were searches. Candle light
vigils. No answers. This guy up
and disappeared from the face of
the earth...

The screens go dark, then reignite with a single surveillance
photo of a GHOSTLY IMAGE; a bearded shadow of a man.

RESSLER
...until four years later when U.S.
military secrets started turning up
in South Asia. The leak was traced
to Reddington. Turns out he was
trading military strategies with
New Delhi; brokering arms deals for
the North Koreans. Four years
after going AWOL, this decorated
soldier re-emerges as an enigma.

We’re struck with a barrage of CLASSIFIED PHOTOS. Red in
secret meetings and exotic countries. The birth of a legend.
5.

RESSLER
His military background would lead
you to believe he’s some sort of
spy, but he’s not. This guy’s an
equal opportunity offender; a
“facilitator” of sorts who’s built
an enterprise brokering deals for
fellow criminals. We know he’s
orchestrated the assassinations of
federal inmates, laundered money
for the mob, and bought judges only
to have them killed. Last year, he
personally negotiated a month long
cease-fire between the la Familia
drug cartel and the Calderon
government. He has no country. No
political agenda. Best we can tell
Reddington’s only allegiance is to
the highest bidder.

AGENT
They call him something. In the
papers.

RESSLER
The Concierge of Crime.

We linger on an eerie photo of Red. Eyes locked on us.

INT. SECURITY NEST - DAY

Ressler and Cooper are little more than silhouettes looking
through the window, watching Red in his interrogation cell.

COOPER
Call Lab Services. Have them fit
him with a VeriChip RFID tag.

RESSLER
You think he’s going somewhere?

COOPER
Not on my watch.
Genres: ["crime","drama","thriller"]

Summary Agent Ressler provides a detailed account of the criminal career of Reddington, the newly arrested 'Concierge of Crime', to a packed room of FBI agents and analysts. He describes Reddington's past as an army officer and his re-emergence as a facilitator hosting deals for fellow criminals, with no political agenda other than to serve the highest bidder.
Strengths "Provides intriguing insight into the character of Reddington and sets up the premise of the show."
Weaknesses "The scene is exposition heavy, which some viewers may find dull."
Critique Overall, this is a well-done scene. It effectively sets up the character of Reddington as a mysterious figure with a complex past and present involvement in criminal activity. The use of images and visuals helps to enhance the story and provide a more engaging experience for the audience. The dialogue is clear and concise, with enough exposition to provide necessary information without bogging down the scene. However, some minor adjustments could be made for further improvement. The use of the term "Classified" for the images may seem redundant since they are being shown in a secure environment, and the use of the term "enigma" may come across as a bit cliche. The character of Red's primary motivation could also be more clearly established, as the highest bidder is a bit vague. Overall, the scene effectively achieves its purpose of setting up the character and backstory for Reddington in a concise and engaging way.
Suggestions 1. Consider breaking up the information into smaller chunks. The scene contains a lot of exposition that could be overwhelming for the audience. Consider revealing the information in smaller pieces throughout the movie.

2. Make the information more visually interesting. Rather than simply showing photos, consider adding in flashbacks or recreations of Reddington's story, which could make the scene more engaging.

3. Add more conflict to the scene. A room full of people hearing information is not very dynamic. Consider adding tension by having someone challenge Ressler's information or have Cooper disagree with Ressler's plan.

4. Make the dialogue more natural. The lines feel like they're being recited, rather than spoken naturally. Consider giving the characters different voices, or adding in pauses and inflection to make it sound more realistic.

5. Consider adding more visual variety. Consider changing up the shot composition or using different camera movements to keep the audience engaged.



Scene 3 -  Red Surrenders and Offers Information
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 7
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 7
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. INTERROGATION CELL - DAY

Red watches ARMED AGENTS escort a DOCTOR into his cell. The
Doctor loads a small CHIP, the size of a grain of rice, into
a digital syringe. Injects the device into Red’s shoulder.

IN THE SECURITY NEST...

A SCANNER lights up. Beeps twice.
6.

TECH
He’s on-line.

As Red’s cell is vacated, the agents discuss what’s next.
Red rubs his shoulder. Turns to a SECURITY CAMERA --

RED
(on the monitor)
It appears someone with the
authority to make decisions has
arrived. Good to see you again,
Agent Cooper.

-- the control room realizes Red is speaking to them through
the security monitors. Cooper turns. The room falls silent.

RED
We need to move quickly and I know
you have many questions, so let’s
begin with the most important one:
why I’m here.

We INTERCUT between the agents and Red, who speaks through
the camera like some Orwellian tyrant. Red stands.

RED
I’m going to help you capture a
criminal you don’t know exists.

RESSLER
What’s he talking about?

COOPER
Turn it up.

RED
Of course, you’re familiar with his
crimes. Counterintelligence is
monitoring his criminal enterprise
through the Patriot Act, the Hague
wants him for war crimes, CIA calls
him the Serbian Ghost.
(flat)
I can tell you his real name is
Ranko Zamani. You want him. I
want him. Let’s say that for the
moment our interests are aligned.

Cooper can’t believe what he’s hearing --

COOPER
Feed this through to the Assistant
A.G. of Counterterrorism.
7.

RESSLER
Get Main Justice on the phone.

With a few keystrokes, an ANALYST brings up the dossier of
RANKO ZAMANI. Classified details unfold on the monitors.

ANALYST
(off his computer)
...Ranko Sinisa Zamani. Serbian
National. Educated in the U.S.
Key player in the Yugoslav wars...

Zamani’s a gaunt little man. Haunting eyes. He wears a rash
of CHEMICAL BURNS on his neck and jaw. Red continues to fill
in details about Zamani as --

-- an ANALYST beckons Cooper and shows him a classified file
on his monitor. Cooper turns. Walks directly into...

RED’S INTERROGATION CELL.

RED
Agent Cooper, you’re not trained in
interrogation.

COOPER
I don’t know what you think is
gonna happen here, but this --

RED
I’m giving you Zamani.

COOPER
Ranko Zamani died twelve years ago.
He’s a non-existent threat.

RED
And you believe that?

COOPER
It’s a fact. Serbian courts had
him declared dead in 2008.

RED
Then a dead man just stepped off
United 283 from Munich to Dulles.

Cooper’s expression goes flat as we SMASH CUT TO:

INT. DULLES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - SAME

Agents are escorted through the terminal by airport police.

IN THE CONTROL ROOM...
8.

POLICE annex flight manifests. Roll back security footage.
Agents freeze-frame an image of a man who’s little more than
a twisted shadow. His eyes just catch the camera. Ranko
Zamani. The Serbian Ghost.

ANALYST (O.S.)
...entered the country under the
name Sacha M. Chacko.

INT. WAR ROOM / F.B.I. - SAME

Images of Zamani flip across screens as STAFF LAWYERS and
ANALYSTS scramble to reconstruct what they know. Like a
buzzing newsroom, the stream of incoming intel is constant.

ANALYST
Cleared customs at 10:56 AM.

ANALYST #2
Counterintelligence has financial
indicators Red helped Zamani flee
Cairo in February of ‘03 --

Ressler storms into the room, voice booming.

RESSLER
Okay, listen up, people. The lab
just pulled a latent print off an
airline arm rest. Nine points of
comparison. Zamani’s alive.
(provoked)
Number Four does not surrender to
settle a score. I wanna know what
these two are planning; scour every
phone record, every bank account.
Somebody tell me what is going on.
Genres: ["Crime","Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Reddington surrenders to the FBI and offers information about a criminal named Ranko Zamani, who they believed was dead. Reddington claims that he can help them catch Zamani, as their interests align.
Strengths
  • Suspenseful introduction to the main plot of the show
  • Strong dialogue
  • Interesting character dynamics
Weaknesses
  • Lack of emotional depth
  • Some expositional dialogue
Critique Overall, the scene is well-written with strong dialogue and clear action. However, there are a few areas for improvement:

1. It could benefit from more visual description, particularly in the opening action sequence. What does the chip injector look like? How does Red react to the injection?

2. The reveal that Red is speaking to the agents through the security monitors is somewhat predictable and formulaic. It might be more effective to find a more surprising way for Red to communicate with them.

3. The exposition about Ranko Zamani feels a bit clunky and forced. It might work better to reveal information about him gradually throughout the scene, rather than in one big chunk.

4. The dialogue between Red and Cooper could be more tense and dynamic. It feels a bit flat and repetitive in places.

5. The scene could use a stronger visual hook or cliffhanger to keep the audience engaged. The reveal of Zamani's identity is effective, but it might benefit from a more dramatic or unexpected beat to end on.
Suggestions Here are some suggestions to improve the scene:

1. Provide more visual description: While the scene is well-written, there is a lot of dialogue and not enough description of what's happening visually. As a screenwriter, it's important to remember that film is a visual medium, so adding more specific details about the setting, the characters' facial expressions and body language, and the action taking place would enhance the scene.

2. Create more tension: While there is a sense of urgency and importance in the scene, it could benefit from more tension. One way to do this would be to establish more clearly what is at stake if they don't catch Zamani or what the potential consequences could be if Red is lying. Adding more conflict between the characters could also increase tension.

3. Clarify character motivations: While Red's motivations are somewhat clear, it's not entirely clear why the agents decide to trust him or work with him. Developing their motivations and reasons for making the decisions they do will make their actions more believable and add depth to the characters.

4. Cut down on exposition: While it's necessary to establish the context and background of Zamani's criminal activities, the dialogue could benefit from being more concise and streamlined. Cutting down on exposition will make the scene more dynamic and keep the audience more engaged.



Scene 4 -  Reddington and Cooper's Interrogation
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 7
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. INTERROGATION CELL / F.B.I. - MOMENTS LATER

Agent Cooper sits down across from Red. Every camera in the
nest is rolling.

COOPER
You have my attention.

RED
Will you admit you were wrong?

COOPER
I was wrong.

RED
Yes, you were wrong. Certainly not
the first time. Now, I’ll give you
Zamani, but first --
9.

COOPER
No ‘but firsts’. You don’t decide
anything. I’m in charge. All you
do is talk.

RED
Agent Cooper, you’ve overestimated
your authority. I don’t trust you.
I don’t even like you. I said I’ll
help you find Zamani, and I will,
but from this point forward there’s
one very important rule:
(fearless)
I only speak with Elizabeth Keen.

IN THE SECURITY NEST...

The agents blink in confusion. Glances are exchanged.

RESSLER
Who the hell is Elizabeth Keen?

So we SMASH CUT TO:
Genres: ["Crime","Drama"]

Summary Reddington and Cooper discuss the terms of their agreement for Reddington to help the FBI catch Ranko Zamani.
Strengths "The scene establishes Reddington's power and control over the situation while also showing Cooper's determination to catch Zamani. The tension and conflict between the two characters is palpable."
Weaknesses "The scene is mostly dialogue-driven and lacks visual action. There is also little emotional impact."
Critique Overall, the scene is written in a clear and concise manner. However, there are a few areas that could be improved for greater impact.

Firstly, the dialogue between Cooper and Red could benefit from more tension and conflict. Currently, it feels a little too easy for Red to assert dominance over Cooper without much resistance. Adding more back-and-forth banter, with each character trying to outmaneuver the other, would make the scene more engaging for the audience.

Additionally, the final line - "Who the hell is Elizabeth Keen?" - feels a bit abrupt and unnatural. It would be more effective to have Ressler express his confusion in a more subtle way, such as through a perplexed expression or a muttered aside to a colleague.

Finally, the decision to SMASH CUT to a new scene without any transitional sentence or action feels jarring. Adding a brief moment of reaction from Cooper or Red, or even just a shot of the camera crew packing up their equipment, would help to ease the transition and keep the audience engaged.
Suggestions Here are a few suggestions:

1. Add more tension and conflict. The scene is fairly straightforward as it stands, but it could benefit from more back-and-forth between Cooper and Red. Maybe Red could try to get under Cooper's skin by bringing up a mistake he made in the past, or by questioning his authority more aggressively.

2. Give more context for why Red doesn't trust Cooper. Right now, it's a bit unclear why Red is so adversarial towards Cooper. Adding a line or two that reveals a past history or conflict between them could help clarify this.

3. Make the stakes clearer. Right now, it's not entirely clear what the consequences will be if Red only speaks to Elizabeth Keen. Adding a line that explains why Red's cooperation is so crucial (e.g. "If we don't find Zamani in the next 24 hours, he'll detonate a bomb and kill thousands") could help raise the stakes and make the scene more engaging.

4. Consider adding more description. The scene is fairly bare-bones right now, which can make it feel rushed and unengaging. Adding more details about the characters' facial expressions, body language, and the setting could help bring the scene to life and make it more cinematic.



Scene 5 -  The Morning Chaos
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 8
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 7
INT. DARK BEDROOM - DAWN

A golden retriever licks the face of a SLEEPING WOMAN. She
pushes the dog away and squints at the blinking alarm clock.
Lays back down. Suddenly JOLTS OUT OF BED as --

WOMAN
Crap. CRAP!!!

-- her dazed HUSBAND sits up on his elbows.

HUSBAND
Lizzy, what’s going on?

WOMAN
Power went out. I’M LATE.

A SERIES OF FAST CUTS ignite the day. Shower on. Toaster
loaded. Steam is wiped from the bathroom mirror and we’re
given our first good look at --

-- ELIZABETH KEEN (36). She’s worked out. The body of a
dancer. Spirit of a fighter. Shades of a rebellious gutter
punk past. Liz brushes her teeth.

LIZ
(mouth foaming)
I missed my bus, babe. I’m gonna
need to take the car.

IN THE KITCHEN...
10.

Liz quickly fumbles through the fridge. Her husband, Tom
(40), stumbles into view. Tom’s easy going. The emotional
glue. Not so good at mornings. He hops into a leg of his
pants, heart racing, as --

TOM
You can’t take the car. I need the
car. Field trip committee.

LIZ
We’re out of milk.

TOM
I can drive you.

Liz closes the refrigerator door to find Tom standing there
with TWO TOURISM BROCHURES, one in each hand.

TOM
Air and Space or the National Zoo?

Liz flicks the zoo brochure.

LIZ
Zoo’s gender neutral.
(then, realizing)
Is this pee?! I’m standing in pee.

TOM
He’s your dog too.

IN THE BEDROOM...

Liz yanks off her socks. Checks the time.

LIZ
(calling out / hurried)
I’m gonna smell like a urinary
tract infection on my first day.

TOM (O.S.)
-- can’t hear you. Remember, we
have the last adoption meeting
today. One-thirty.

IN THE KITCHEN...

Tom scrapes the burnt char from a piece of toast and takes a
giant bite. He hands the other half to Liz who buzzes past,
takes a bite, grabbing her purse as --

TOM
You heard me, right? One-thirty?
11.

LIZ
One-thirty. Last meeting. Make or
break. Don’t worry about me, babe,
I’ll take the train from work and
meet you there.

TOM
I’m in the car.

As Tom disappears into the hall, Liz tosses the burnt toast
to the dog. She opens the fridge. Grabs an apple.

TOM (O.S.)
You got the keys?

LIZ
In my pocket.

TOM (O.S.)
I got your coffee.

These two are good. In locked-sync step.

OUTSIDE THEIR BROWNSTONE...

Liz vaults down the steps, apple in her teeth. She stops
when she sees Tom standing by their car watching her.

LIZ
What?

TOM
You.

LIZ
I forget something?

Tom smiles, marveling.

TOM
We both woke up seven minutes ago.
My shirt’s on backwards and my eyes
can barely focus. You’re dressed,
composed and as beautiful as you
were the day we met.

LIZ
I’m forgetting something.

Tom pulls LIZ’S F.B.I. BADGE from behind his back. Almost
forgot it. As she pockets the badge we realize LIZ IS AN
F.B.I. AGENT. She steps closer. Looks into her Tom’s eyes.
12.

LIZ
You know I’m not going to let this
job come between us and our family.
We want a family, we’re gonna have
a family. Today’s the day.

TOM
We can do this.

He holds her eyes.

TOM
I’m proud of you, Lizzy. You
worked hard for this. Nervous?

LIZ
No. I’m good. I just don’t want
any more big surprises today.

Tom pulls Liz close and they KISS, but their embrace is
interrupted by a low, THUNDEROUS RUMBLE. Leaves rustle. The
rumbling SWELLS as they look overhead to see --

-- a HELICOPTER rising over their brownstone. POLICE CARS
emerge out of nowhere. JUMP the curb. Cordon off a large
area of the park across the street where the chopper lands.
Agent Ressler exits, running toward Liz.

RESSLER
Agent Keen?

He flashes his BADGE. Liz blinks in disbelief.

RESSLER
Donald Ressler. Washington Field
Office. I need you to come with me
right away.

Liz holds out her finger, dangling the keys to Tom.

LIZ
(dumbstruck)
I don’t think I’ll need the car.

CUT TO BLACK.

END OF TEASER
13.

ACT ONE
Genres: ["Drama","Crime"]

Summary Elizabeth Keen, an FBI agent, and her husband, Tom, navigate through their hectic morning routine while preparing for an adoption meeting. Suddenly, their peaceful routine is interrupted by a thunderous rumble and an FBI agent requesting her immediate attention.
Strengths
  • Well-paced introduction to the main character and her daily life
  • Engaging dialogue and interactions between characters
Weaknesses
  • Lack of clear indication of the overarching plot
Critique Overall, this scene is well-written and engaging. The pacing is good and the dialogue feels natural. However, as a screenwriting expert, I would suggest a few adjustments to make the scene stronger.

Firstly, the introduction of Liz as an FBI agent feels a bit forced and abrupt. It would be helpful to lay some groundwork earlier in the scene so that her profession feels more organic. Perhaps there could be a news report on the TV in the background about a recent FBI investigation, or Liz could mention a case she's working on in passing. This would make her sudden abduction by Agent Ressler feel more believable.

Secondly, the exchange between Liz and Tom regarding the tourism brochures and the pee on the floor feels a bit superfluous. While it shows their playful banter and establishes their relationship, it doesn't really serve the overall plot of the scene. In a tight thriller like this, every moment should be utilized to drive the story forward.

Lastly, the cliffhanger ending with Agent Ressler's arrival feels a bit cliché. It's a classic trope in crime thrillers to have a mundane morning disrupted by a sudden abduction, and it doesn't feel particularly fresh or exciting here. It would be interesting to see the scene take a more unexpected turn, perhaps with Liz receiving a call from a mysterious informant or discovering a clue that shakes up her perception of her daily life.

Overall, with some slight tweaks, this could be a strong opening scene for a thriller series. It establishes the characters well and sets up a tantalizing mystery for the audience to unravel.
Suggestions Overall, the scene is well-structured and moves quickly. However, some suggestions to improve the scene:

1. Clarify context: There is no context for why the power outage is happening or what Liz is late for. Consider adding a line or two to provide context and make it clear why she is in such a hurry.

2. Simplify dialogue: Some of the dialogue feels a little stilted and could be simplified to make it more natural-sounding. For example, instead of "Zoo’s gender neutral,” Liz could just say "Let's go to the zoo."

3. Add more visual descriptions: Take advantage of the visual medium of film and add more visual descriptions to enhance the scene. For example, the burnt toast could be described as smoking and charred, and the scene with Tom scraping it off could be shown rather than just mentioned in dialogue.

4. Develop character relationships: The scene is fast-paced and there's not a lot of time for character development, but adding a few small details could help establish the relationships between Liz and Tom and Liz and Ressler. For example, Liz could give Tom a quick kiss goodbye before leaving, or Ressler could give Liz a look of admiration as he hands her the badge.



Scene 6 -  The Surrender
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 7
INT. HELICOPTER (MOVING) - DAY

We drift over WASHINGTON. Liz watches in total bewilderment
as the city floats under her feet. Ressler hands her a set
of headphones which she puts on to hear --

RESSLER
Raymond Reddington.

LIZ
Excuse me?

RESSLER
The fugitive. Number Four. How do
you know each other?

She adjusts the headphones, confused.

LIZ
I’m sorry, I woke up late. Power
went off. I’m a little... punchy.

RESSLER
When was your last contact?

LIZ
With... Reddington?

Ressler squints. Who else?

LIZ
What? No. Why would you think --
the man’s been at large since I was
in a training bra. We studied his
profile at...
(re: the ground below)
Is that the White House? This is
restricted airspace.

RESSLER
You never met.

LIZ
Of course, not. Most psychologists
could only dream of interviewing a
guy like Reddington.

RESSLER
Well, congratulations. Your dream
is about to come true.

Off Liz’s disbelief we JUMP TO:
14.

INT. F.B.I. HEADQUARTERS - SAME

Liz tries to match Ressler’s stride as F.B.I. POLICE escort
them into the belly of the bureau.

LIZ
This must be some sort of mistake.
I’ve never even -- I’m sorry, you
said Reddington surrendered? Why?

RESSLER
We’re working on that.

She stops. He turns.

LIZ
You’re telling me this guy’s eluded
the F.B.I. for over twenty-five
years, and he’s suddenly decided to
give himself up to chat with me?

RESSLER
Consider yourself flattered.

INT. COOPER’S OFFICE / F.B.I. - SAME

Liz sits in silence with THREE AGENTS. Ressler and Cooper
enter. They’ve been talking. Cooper sits across from Liz.

COOPER
Harold Cooper. Assistant Director
of Counterterrorism.

LIZ
Yes, sir. I know who you are, sir.

COOPER
Wanna tell us what’s gong on?

Nobody notices how Liz clutches her right hand into a fist;
nervously opening and closing the grip, running her fingers
against the skin of her palm.

LIZ
I’ve been vetted by the agency like
everyone else. Same background
checks. Psych profiles. I’m sure
OPR’s trolling my digital footprint
right now, and I can tell you what
they’ll find. Nothing. I have no
history with Reddington.

Cooper watches Liz. Isn’t convinced.
15.

COOPER
They tell me today’s your first day
as a profiler.

LIZ
Yes. Reassigned from New York.
Graduated Quantico last month.

COOPER
Congratulations.
(flat)
Profile yourself.

LIZ
Sir?

COOPER
Who are you? What does he see?
Profile Elizabeth Keen.

LIZ
Oh, uhm. Well..
(uneasy)
I’ve been with the Bureau for four
years; head of the Mobile Emergency
Psych Unit in New York. Worked
bank robberies, murder, extortion --

COOPER
We’ve read your resume.

Liz looks trapped for a moment. Uneasy silence. Then
something clicks and it’s as if another woman emerges --

LIZ
My colleagues call me ‘sir’. They
think I’m a bitch. Like most kids
who raise themselves, I display
narcissistic behavior. I can be
withdrawn. Disconnected.

-- she speaks with complete transparency.

LIZ
Despite, or perhaps because of my
past, I have a deep yearning to
understand the criminal mind. I’m
board certified in forensic
psychology, and yet I’m under the
delusion I can erase my childhood
by having kids of my own. All this
manifests itself in the occasional,
regrettable, fit of anger.

The agents are speechless. Liz blinks. Feels naked.
16.

COOPER
Do you find it odd Reddington
surrendered himself the same day
you started working as a profiler?

LIZ
It suggests he was waiting for me.

COOPER
Why you specifically?

LIZ
Because I’m new. He thinks I can
be easily manipulated. Obviously,
the man doesn’t know me very well.

There’s a strength within this woman that’s undeniable.
Genres: ["crime","drama","mystery"]

Summary As Reddington surrenders to the FBI, Elizabeth Keen, a new profiler, is brought in to interrogate him. She initially denies any prior knowledge of Reddington, but her colleagues and superiors sense something amiss. As they test her patience and her credentials, a different side of her personality emerges, revealing layers of hidden pain and determination.
Strengths
  • Strong character development
  • Suspenseful premise
  • Interesting dialogue
Weaknesses
  • Some stilted exposition
  • Predictable setup
Critique Overall, the scene is well written and moves the story forward effectively. However, there are a couple of areas for improvement:

1. The dialogue could be more concise. There are a few instances where the characters repeat themselves or ask unnecessary questions. For example, when Ressler asks Liz how she knows Reddington, she responds with confusion and he has to clarify by saying "the fugitive. Number Four." This could be condensed to just one line: "How do you know Raymond Reddington?"

2. Liz's sudden shift in demeanor when asked to "profile herself" feels a bit contrived. It's not clear why she would suddenly reveal such personal information to a room full of strangers, especially given how guarded she's been up until this point. It might be more effective to drop some hints earlier on in the scene that Liz is feeling vulnerable or off-balance in some way, so that her confession feels more earned.

Overall, though, the scene sets up an intriguing premise and introduces the characters effectively. With some minor tweaks, it could be even stronger.
Suggestions Overall, the scene does a decent job of establishing Liz's confusion and disbelief at being brought in to interrogate Reddington. However, there could be some improvements made to make the scene more engaging and forward-moving:

1. Add action: The scene is mostly talking heads, with Liz and Ressler in the helicopter, then Liz and Cooper in the FBI headquarters. To break up the monotony of the dialogue, some physical action could be added, such as Liz fidgeting with the headphones or Ressler flipping through a file. This can also help to reveal character traits and further establish the tone of the scene.

2. Tighten up the dialogue: Some of the dialogue exchanges feel overly long or repetitive. For example, when Liz and Ressler are discussing Reddington, Liz asks "Excuse me?" and then Ressler repeats himself instead of simply answering her initial question. Shorter, more concise lines can help keep the scene moving and build tension.

3. Add tension: While there is some tension between Liz and Ressler and then Liz and Cooper, there could be more of a sense of urgency or danger. Something as small as Liz's hand shaking with nerves could help build tension and keep the audience engaged in the scene.

4. Show, don't tell: While Liz does reveal some aspects of her character and background, much of it is told to the audience through dialogue. Finding ways to show these traits or reveal them more subtly can make the scene more engaging. For example, instead of stating that Liz can be withdrawn, show her avoiding eye contact or fidgeting.

Overall, these small changes can help to improve the scene and keep it engaging for the audience.



Scene 7 -  Red's Deal
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 10
  • Dialogue: 9
INT. WASHINGTON FIELD OFFICE / F.B.I. - SAME

Liz, Cooper and Ressler are escorted through a series of SCIF
checkpoints. Through the most secure areas of the Bureau and
down into...

THE HIVE.

They wind their way through a maze of monitors, techs, and
control boards. This is mission control and the room from
which Red is carefully monitored.

The techs and support staff FALL SILENT as Liz moves through
their space. We sense their collective respect; like Romans
watching a gladiator enter the Coliseum.

Cooper and Liz stop before a steel door.

COOPER
If you need anything, remember,
we’re right here.

This doesn’t give Liz comfort. Suddenly, a chest-rattling
ALARM sounds. Hydraulic locks disengage. Liz steps into...

A MASSIVE AUDITORIUM.

State of the art. Impenetrable. At the center of this dark
room is a small, BULLETPROOF PRISON TUBE. Red sits alone
under the hot lights. He sees Liz and he rises. Her heart
pounds as she steps inside...

RED’S CONTAINMENT CELL.

RED
Agent Keen. What an honor.
17.

He extends his hand like a boy on a date. Liz keeps her arms
folded and tries to project confidence. Drags the only other
chair in the cell to Red’s side of the table --

LIZ
I heard you wanna talk.

-- she sits. Red is captivated. We INTERCUT with the Hive
as everyone watches the monitors in silence.

LIZ
Well?

Red can’t take his eyes off of Liz.

LIZ
You’re the one who surrendered.
Made all the demands. Asked me
here. I’m here.

RED
You got rid of your highlights.
Much less Baltimore. Do you get
back home much?

She tries not to look surprised by this.

LIZ
Tell me about Zamani.

RED
I haven’t been home in years.

Liz feigns a smile. Takes a moment. She needs to establish
she’s the alpha dog here.

LIZ
Your wife, Ellen, you know she
lights a candle every Christmas
Eve. Still mourns the day you
disappeared even though she knows
you’re alive.
(firm)
No way you’d come back after twenty-
five years, face the life you left,
everyone you betrayed, in order to
settle some grudge.

RED
Perhaps it’s a sizable grudge.

LIZ
Why involve me? I’m nobody. First
day. Nothing special about me.
18.

RED
Oh, I think you’re very special.

He says it in an weirdly erotic way. Liz flicks a glance at
the agents behind the glass. Her discomfort betrays her.

RED
Within the hour, Ranko Zamani will
abduct the daughter of U.S. General
David Ryker. His team will use an
EM pulse bomb to create a diversion
and grab the girl. If you don’t
move quickly she will die. That’s
what I know.

LIZ
And how do you know this?

RED
Because I’m the one who got Zamani
into the country.

LIZ
I should believe you?

RED
Of course not. I’m a criminal.
Criminals are liars. Everything
about me is a lie.
(then)
But if anyone can give me a second
chance, it’s you. The two of us
have overcome so much.

Liz leans back. Doesn’t like this.

RED
I mean, look at you. Abandoned by
a father who was a career criminal.
A mother who worked two jobs,
despite her addiction, to keep you
in school, out of juvenile court.
You practically raised yourself.
And yet here you are, about to make
a name for yourself, about to catch
Ranko Zamani.
(deadpan)
I’m gonna make you famous, Lizzy.

LIZ
Don’t call me Lizzy.

She says it with force, but she’s screaming inside.
19.

RED
We both know the past does not
equal the future. You’ve learned
from your experiences, they’ve
given you tremendous insight.
That’s why you’re gonna believe me.

Off Red’s lewd smile we SLAM CUT TO:

THE HIVE - SECONDS LATER

Liz BURSTS through the door. Shoulders past Cooper and goes
directly to Ressler.

LIZ
What did you tell him?

RESSLER
What?! Nothing.

LIZ
Then how did he know those things?
Private things? About my family?!

RESSLER
Why didn’t your father’s criminal
record show up in your background
report? You told us he --

She turns to Cooper.

LIZ
I think we should contact the SWAT
commander at Quantico; roll a team
to the girl’s school.

RESSLER
Nonsense. He’s bluffing.

LIZ
He’s establishing his value.

RESSLER
I’ve been the field agent on this
guy for eight years, trust me --

LIZ
-- and eight years got you what?
You asked me here. You asked my
opinion. So here it is: that girl
is gonna be taken.

Cooper considers this. Wheels turning.
20.

COOPER
Roll HRT to the school. Call
Bolling AFB Command, patch us
through to General Ryker.
Genres: ["Thriller","Crime","Drama"]

Summary Reddington offers to help the FBI catch Ranko Zamani by revealing details of his plan to kidnap the daughter of General Ryker. Liz, a new profiler, interrogates Reddington while battling personal demons. As tensions rise, they must decide whether or not to trust each other.
Strengths
  • Well-written and tension-filled dialogue
  • Strong characterization of Liz and Reddington
  • Effective use of setting to create a mood of suspense
Weaknesses
  • Limited action in the scene
  • Somewhat exposition-heavy
Critique Overall, the scene has good tension and builds up the stakes for the upcoming events. However, some dialogue seems awkward and forced, particularly with Red's weirdly erotic comment towards Liz. It also comes across as unrealistic that Liz would be given such high-level clearance without any prior experience or qualifications. Additionally, the scene lacks specificity in terms of setting, characterization, and imagery, making it harder for the audience to fully engage with the scene and characters. There could be more attention given to creating a vivid, sensory environment and capturing character traits through actions and dialogue.
Suggestions Here are some suggestions to improve the scene:

1. Give the characters more depth: At this point in the script, the characters are still quite one-dimensional. Liz is the rookie agent who wants to prove herself, Cooper is the supportive boss, and Ressler is the skeptical agent. Giving them more backstory or personality traits would make them more interesting to watch.

2. Use visual storytelling: This scene is heavy on dialogue and exposition, which can become tedious to watch. Consider using more visual storytelling to convey information. For example, instead of telling the audience that the Hive is mission control, show shots of the techs and monitors in action.

3. Raise the stakes: While the scene sets up the plot well, it doesn't create much tension or conflict. Consider adding an obstacle for the characters to overcome or raising the stakes of the situation to make the audience more invested in what's happening.

4. Tighten up the dialogue: Some of the dialogue in the scene feels forced or unnatural. Consider making the conversations between the characters more authentic and realistic. Also, pay attention to pacing - some lines could be condensed or cut altogether to keep the scene moving.



Scene 8 -  The Calm Before the Storm
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 7
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. WOMEN’S RESTROOM - SAME

Liz steps into a stall and closes the door. Needs a minute
to gather herself. She takes a few calming breaths before --

BAMM... BAMM... BAMM...

-- she SLAMS HER FIST into the wall of the stall repeatedly.
Raw unchecked energy. Liz falls back. Making that habitual
rolling fist; running her fingers against her palm until she
grabs her phone. Dials her husband.

TOM (O.S.)
Lizzy, hey, What’s going on? I’ve
been wanting to call, but --

LIZ
I need to hear your voice.

TOM (O.S.)
What’s with the helicopter?

LIZ
The helicopter was nothing. I just
had an interview with -- I can’t
even tell you. Classified. This
entire day is classified. I flew
over the White House!

TOM
Over the what?!

LIZ
I’m telling you, they gave me Level
Four clearance. Insane. I just
interviewed the number four... I
met with the Assistant Director...

TOM
Okay. Breathe. Just breathe.

LIZ
If you knew half the things --

TOM
I can’t. Remember? Classified.
Those things, they don’t matter
because you’re gonna be amazing.
21.

LIZ
Tell me I can do this.

TOM
Lizzy, when have you ever failed?

This lands with her. Calms her.

LIZ
I don’t deserve you. I promise
I’ll make this up to you, let’s
take tonight and --

WHAM!!!

The stall door flies open and Liz finds herself standing face
to face with Ressler, chest heaving --

RESSLER
What are you doing with that phone?
We’re on a SCIF floor. You can’t --

LIZ
(to Tom)
Gotta go, babe.

-- she clicks the phone off.

RESSLER
You put on a great show in there.
Sounded real smart. But you better
pull yourself together because you
just called in the calvary. HRT.
SWAT. This is your show now. Your
neck on the line.

He yanks a strip of toilet paper. Puts it in Liz’s hand.

RESSLER
Wipe your nose. We’re all waiting.

CUT TO BLACK.

END OF ACT ONE
22.

ACT TWO

INT. PENTAGON - DAY

A MARINE in dress blues moves through the Defense Department
headquarters, past security, and into a room full of GENERALS
gathered around a table. The men turn as --

-- GENERAL DAVID RYKER stands. Ryker (50’s) is a Four Star
General. Distinguished. Fierce. The Marine salutes.

MARINE
Sir. We have a situation, Sir.
It’s about your daughter.

INT. HOLTON-ARMS PRIVATE SCHOOL - SAME

SWAT teams storm the hallways as classrooms are evacuated.
Children everywhere. Teachers direct kids into --

THE PARKING LOT

-- where AGENTS pile out of suburbans and into the SEA OF
CHILDREN. Pandemonium. A thousand little girls in plaid
skirts and sweaters.

RESSLER
What the hell happened?

POLICE COMMANDER
Campus security freaked, saw SWAT
and activated the emergency plan.

RESSLER
Where’s the girl?

Agents sort through the faces as Liz searches for --

LIZ
Beth?! I’m looking for Beth Ryker!

-- a teacher rushes BETH RYKER (8) toward Liz. Beth is an
angel with two missing teeth. Bright eyes. Heart pounding.

Liz takes her hand. Races toward the closest SUBURBAN. She
can’t find Ressler, but there’s no time. A SWAT AGENT lifts
the girl into the suburban and Liz dives in behind. Motions
the driver.
Genres: ["Drama","Thriller"]

Summary As Liz prepares for an adoption meeting, she receives a call demanding her attention. Meanwhile, Reddington surrenders and offers assistance in catching Ranko Zamani. Liz, a new profiler, interrogates Reddington while confronting personal demons. As tensions rise, they must decide whether or not to trust each other.
Strengths "The scene builds tension and conflict through multiple plotlines. The dialogue is well-crafted, revealing character emotions and motivations. The depiction of a high-stress FBI environment is realistic and engaging."
Weaknesses "The scene focuses on action and dialogue, but lacks visual variety or nuance. The characters and themes are introduced but not fully developed."
Critique
Suggestions There are a few suggestions that could improve this scene:

1. Add more physical description: There's a lot of dialogue in this scene, but not a lot of physical description. Adding in more details about Liz's actions and body language will bring the scene to life and make it more engaging for the audience. For example, you could describe the look on Liz's face when she first enters the stall, or the way her hand shakes as she dials her phone.

2. Increase the tension: This scene is meant to be intense, but at times it feels a bit lackluster. To amp up the tension, consider adding in more moments of conflict or danger. For example, you could have Ressler threaten Liz in a more direct way, or have SWAT agents closing in on them as they try to make their escape.

3. Clarify the stakes: It's not entirely clear what's at stake in this scene. We know that Liz is on a "SCIF floor" and that she's not supposed to have her phone, but it's not immediately clear why this is such a big deal. Adding in more exposition or dialogue that explains the severity of the situation will help the audience understand what's at stake.

4. Cut down on extraneous dialogue: There are a few moments in this scene where the dialogue feels extraneous or unnecessary. For example, when Tom asks Liz about the helicopter, it doesn't really add anything to the scene. Cutting down on these moments of filler dialogue will make the scene feel tighter and more focused.



Scene 9 -  The Bridge Attack
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 8
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 7
EXT. WASHINGTON - SAME

Liz’s suburban rolls through the city. We INTERCUT between
the vehicles. Ressler and Liz are now separated. It wasn’t
planned this way, but the girl’s safe. SWAT teams trail in
bumper-lock.
23.

IN LIZ’S SUBURBAN...

The little girl stares at the fully armed SWAT Agent seated
across from her. His radio crackles.

RESSLER (O.S.)
Target onboard. Notify McNair.

DISPATCH (O.S.)
Copy. You have an HRT escort.

Beth’s eyes well with tears as --

LIZ
Can you turn that thing off?

-- the little girl starts CRYING.

LIZ
Hey. You’re okay.

BETH
Is my Daddy hurt?

LIZ
Oh, no. Your Daddy’s fine. We’re
on our way to see him right now.
(searching)
Hey, your name’s Beth, right? I’m
Beth. Elizabeth. My friends call
me Liz.

BETH
My Daddy has a pin like that.

She’s looking at the AMERICAN FLAG PIN on Liz’s lapel --

LIZ
I bet Daddy has lots of medals.

-- Liz sees the caravan is crossing the Potomac. They pass
over the massive WOODROW WILSON BRIDGE, escaping Washington.

LIZ
To get a pin like this you gotta be
really brave, like your Dad. Like
you were back there.

Liz removes the pin from her lapel and pins it on Beth’s
sweater. Beth touches the pin. It reflects the sunlight.
She forgets her tears as --

-- Beth looks at her own CHARM BRACELET. Kiddie jewelry. A
trinket from a gum ball machine. She takes it off and starts
to clip it around Liz’s wrist.
24.

LIZ
Oh, you don’t have to give me...
(smiles)
Thank you. It’s beautiful.

BETH
It’s a charm bracelet. It’s got
little animals.

Beth leans into Liz. Feeling safe now. Liz puts her arm
around the girl. She’s got a way of putting kids at ease.

LIZ
You’re safe with me.

Liz spots a few tail lights ahead --

LIZ
(into her radio)
What’s going on up ahead?

RESSLER (O.S.)
Accident. Dispatch is re-routing.

Liz eyes the accident as their suburban slows. Ressler gets
out, talks with an officer, but Liz senses something. Eerie
silence. She considers their stalled caravan as she looks in
the rearview mirror to see --

-- the bridge lights and traffic signals FLICKERING OUT. One
by one, the power outage races toward them like a tidal wave.

LIZ
It’s happening...
(into her radio)
IT’S HAPPENING!

The entire bridge LURCHES. Cars SHAKE. Ressler looks down
to see the steel plates between his feet open up --

RESSLER
The bridge. Turn around. GO!

-- THE DRAWBRIDGE HAS BEEN ACTIVATED.

We INTERCUT among the caravan. Vehicles jockeying to perform
three point turns as the bridge begins to incline. Liz’s
suburban is sideways in the road when she looks up to see --

-- A GARBAGE TRUCK barreling toward them.

LIZ
GET DOWN.
25.

Liz covers Beth with her body as the garbage truck SLAMS into
the driver-side of their suburban. GLASS SPRAYS. The driver
is killed on impact as the suburban is SHOVED toward --

-- THE RISING GAP IN THE BRIDGE and across the interlocking
seam. Gears turn. The traffic decks RISE UP to a FIFTEEN
PERCENT INCLINE. A man leaps from his car before it falls
through the widening gap into the Potomac below.

Now TWENTY PERCENT. Rising. Liz realizes her suburban is
now on the OTHER SIDE of the traffic deck. The gap in the
drawbridge has effectively separated Liz and Beth from the
rest of the caravan. At TWENTY-FIVE PERCENT --

-- cars begin to scoot. SLIDING downward. Liz looks to see
a TEAM OF MASKED KIDNAPPERS racing up the traffic deck toward
her. Past her car. They race to the apex of the bridge and
anchor GRAPPLING HOOKS into the steel decking.

THIRTY PERCENT. Pedestrians tumble down the traffic deck.
Agents scramble to no avail. The Kidnappers drop back down
toward Liz on RAPPELLING LINES, scooting with the car. One
Kidnapper takes out a gun and --

KA-BAMM

-- SHOOTS THROUGH THE WINDOW. Kills Liz’s SWAT Agent. Blood
spray hits Liz. Beth SCREAMS. Liz tumbles and lands against
the windshield. Loses her gun. The door above them opens to
reveal a MASKED KIDNAPPER.

LIZ
Take my hand, Beth. Stay with me.

The Kidnapper climbs into the car. Reaching for Beth. Liz
swats at him as he GRABS THE LITTLE GIRL. She reaches out --

LIZ
BETH. TAKE MY HAND.

-- they lock eyes. FORTY PERCENT. The girl grabs Liz’s hand
but suddenly the suburban falls. Liz goes with it. As the
car falls away, the Kidnapper’s left holding Beth, dangling
from the rappelling line as --

-- Liz’s car ROLLS TWICE. Lands hard. The Kidnappers
holding Beth climb up toward the apex of the bridge which is
now fully open. Below --

ON THE POTOMAC

-- a SPEEDBOAT arrives. The Kidnappers rappel down, girl in
hand, into the boat. As they speed away Liz opens her eyes.
Her world slips into focus. She reaches out. Lying among
the splintered glass she finds... BETH’S CHARM BRACELET.
26.
Genres: ["Action","Thriller","Crime"]

Summary FBI agent Liz Keen and a young girl she is transporting are caught in a dangerous situation when a group of masked kidnappers attack a bridge they are on. As the bridge rises, separating them from the rest of the caravan, Liz must fight to keep the young girl safe while also trying to survive the chaotic situation.
Strengths "Intense action sequence with high stakes, strong visual effects, and a well-choreographed sense of danger"
Weaknesses "Some of the dialogue feels a bit forced and cliche, and not all of the characters are fully fleshed out"
Critique Overall, this scene has a lot of action and tension, but it could benefit from some clearer visual and spatial descriptions. For example, it's not entirely clear where Liz's suburban is in relation to the other vehicles, and the language around the rising drawbridge could be made more concrete. Additionally, some dialogue feels somewhat stilted and cliched, particularly in Liz's interactions with the little girl.

However, the scene does an effective job of building up suspense and danger, gradually escalating the stakes as the bridge rises and things go wrong. The choice to have Liz lose the little girl she was trying to protect is a powerful one, and using the charm bracelet as a symbol of that loss is a nice touch. Overall, with some fine-tuning and more detailed descriptions, this could be a very strong scene.
Suggestions Here are some suggestions to improve the scene:

- Clarify the main objective of the scene. What is the purpose of this scene in the larger story? Is it to introduce a new character, establish tension, or advance the plot? By clarifying the main objective, the scene can be streamlined to serve that purpose more effectively.

- Add more character development. Although the interaction between Liz and Beth is a nice touch, there isn't enough character development in the scene to make the audience care about them. Consider adding more backstory, dialogue, or actions that reveal their personalities or motivations.

- Create a stronger visual impact. While the scene has a lot of action, the description is written in a way that is difficult to visualize. Consider using more vivid and specific language to create a stronger visual impact. For example, instead of saying "cars begin to scoot," describe how they slide, spin, or crash into each other.

- Streamline the action. The scene has a lot of action, but some of it can be condensed or eliminated to create a more focused and impactful sequence. For example, the accident that causes the drawbridge to rise could be eliminated, as it doesn't directly contribute to the kidnapping plot.

- Increase the stakes. Although the kidnapping of Beth is a high-stakes situation, the scene could benefit from even higher stakes. Consider adding a ticking clock element, such as a bomb that will go off if the kidnappers don't get what they want, or a deadline that adds urgency to the rescue mission.



Scene 10 -  Personal Demons
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 7
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 7
INT. F.B.I. HEADQUARTERS - DAY

Liz sits on a bench in a hallway. A small bandage covering
a split in her brow. She holds Beth’s charm bracelet like a
rosary. Stares ahead, unblinking, eyes locked on the silent
image of --

-- General Ryker who can be seen through the glass wall of
Cooper’s office. Ryker is SCREAMING at Cooper and Ressler.
Eviscerating the agents. Tears well in Liz’s eyes as she
watches, heavy with guilt. She knows she may have cost the
General’s daughter her life.

Liz is watching this verbal brawl when her phone vibrates.
She looks down. Six missed calls. Realizing the time as --

LIZ
(panicked)
Tom. My God. I meant to call.

-- we INTERCUT with Tom. Pacing nervously. Sneaking a call
in the hallway outside their ADOPTION AGENCY.

TOM
Are you close? What’s going on?

LIZ
I’m stuck here.

TOM
Stuck?! You’re kidding, right?
Everyone’s waiting.

LIZ
I’m the worst. I’m so sorry. It’s
just, Tom, this crazy day --

Ressler KNOCKS on the glass. Waves Liz into the office for
her ass chewing. She holds up a finger, asking the General
and the others wait, juggling Tom as --

TOM
(soft / compassionate)
Lizzy, babe, if this is too much...
we don’t have to do this. We can
start a family next year -- I can
tell these people right now. But
if we’re gonna go through with this
we gotta do it together. I can’t
do it alone, Lizzy. I need to know
you’re one-hundred percent.

Liz looks at the waiting General. Turns her back on him.
Her priorities suddenly slip into focus.
27.

LIZ
I’m one hundred percent.

TOM
You say that, but...

LIZ
Tom. Our family. It’s all that
matters.

She’s speaking from the heart. He smiles.

TOM
I believe you.

CASE AGENT (O.S.)
Mr. Keen? Is your wife coming?

Tom whips around. Greets the CASE AGENT with a big, warm
smile and an extended hand as --

TOM
(to Liz / tender)
Let me handle this.

LIZ
Good luck, babe. Love you.

-- Liz hangs up. Smiles to herself. She loses herself in
the warmth of Tom when General Ryker comes storming out of
the office. Moving down the hallway.

LIZ
Sir?

The General turns to Liz.

LIZ
I want to personally tell you how
sorry I am for your daughter’s --

GENERAL RYKER
(seething)
You’re not just out of a job. I’m
gonna see to it the D.O.J. files
charges. Criminal negligence. You
better beg God my girl comes home
alive because this thing’s coming
down on you, sweetheart.

Ryker marches off down the hallway.

LIZ
(calling out)
I’m gonna get her back.
28.

As the General disappears, Liz plops down onto the bench.
Feeling helpless. She looks at BETH’S CHARM BRACELET and
clips it back around her wrist. Considers the tiny animals.
She then opens her hand and we reveal --

-- a BURN SCAR on the inside of Liz’s palm. It crawls up her
wrist and into her sleeve like a some twisted, blooming vine.
Liz makes a loose fist. Runs her fingertips over the uneven
SCAR TISSUE; that habitual rolling motion.

We leave Liz there. Wrestling with some distant memory.

CUT TO BLACK.

END OF ACT TWO
29.

ACT THREE

INT. RED’S HOLDING CHAMBER - SAME

An Interrogator from the High-Value Interrogation Team sits
across from Red. They’ve been at this for hours.

INTERROGATOR
Is the girl dead?

Red’s silent. Eyes locked on the Interrogator.

INTERROGATOR
Is that why we haven’t heard from
the abductors? No demands? What
other reason would there be?
(inflamed)
It’s been four hours. You think
we’re gonna overlook the fact you
turned yourself in the exact same
day this thing went down?

IN THE HIVE...

Cooper sees they’re getting nowhere. Knocks on the glass.

COOPER
Kill the cameras. Everyone out.

CUT TO:

GENERAL RYKER. Chest full of medals. He sits down before
Red who is not intimidated whatsoever.

GENERAL RYKER
The US Government doesn’t negotiate
with terrorists. But I’m not the
government. I’m here as a father.

Red blinks at the General’s medals as if they’re meaningless.

GENERAL RYKER
Is this about immunity? You want
your crimes forgiven? I’m personal
friends with the Attorney General.
There are things you’ve done that I
can make people forget.

Silence. The General EXPLODES.

GENERAL RYKER
ANSWER ME! This is a my baby’s
life we’re talking about. Your
people haven’t made one demand!
30.

RED
I already told you people how this
works. You wanna talk? Go get
Elizabeth Keen.

The General stares daggers.
Genres: ["Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Liz battles personal guilt, stress and concern over the safety of a young girl she is transporting. Meanwhile, she interrogates Reddington and they must both decide whether to trust each other or not. General Ryker is outraged over his daughter's potential kidnapping, demanding answers.
Strengths "Strong character development and emotional depth, tension between characters and the high stakes conflict add to the intrigue and suspense."
Weaknesses "The scene is mostly centered around talking and there isn't much physical action, some dialogue could be more sharp and impactful."
Critique Overall, this scene provides good conflict and tension, especially with the General's anger towards Liz and her guilt over potentially causing the General's daughter's death. However, some of the dialogue feels a bit on-the-nose and could benefit from some subtlety. Additionally, the burn scar reveal at the end feels a bit forced and unearned, as it is not set up earlier in the scene. It may also benefit from more physical action and blocking to break up the talking heads.
Suggestions Overall, this scene reads a bit disjointedly and could benefit from some tightening up. Here are some suggestions:

- The opening description of Liz sitting on a bench and holding the charm bracelet feels a bit passive. Consider giving her some action to do or describing her physical reaction to what's happening around her. This will also help to build tension in the scene.
- The exchange between Liz and Tom feels a bit disconnected from the rest of the scene. Consider either cutting it down or finding a way to integrate it more fully into the action. One way to do this might be to have Liz receive a call from Tom earlier on, which would then continue throughout the scene and build to their conversation at the end.
- The dialogue between General Ryker and Liz could be more dynamic. Consider adding some physical movement or action to break up the talking heads. Additionally, you could find ways to make the threat of the General's anger or Liz's determination more vivid, perhaps by using stronger imagery or more specific details.
- The scene ends on a powerful reveal of Liz's burn scar and the implication that it holds some deeper significance. Consider building up to this moment more intentionally and finding ways to tie it into the action of the scene earlier on. You could also consider adding more description of the scar itself to emphasize its significance and make it more memorable for the audience.



Scene 11 -  Trading Secrets
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 8
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 7
INT. THE HIVE - DAY

Liz does a walk of shame. Past Cooper. Past Ryker. All
eyes are on Red’s ‘chosen one’ as she makes her way into...

RED’S HOLDING CHAMBER.

Red extends his hand. Liz keeps her arms folded. He sees
Liz is wearing the CHARM BRACELET Beth gave her; the one with
the tiny plastic animals.

RED
Nice bobble. Reminds me of my
daughter. She loved jewelry --

LIZ
Where’s the girl?

RED
-- you women and your jewelry.

LIZ
It’s been four hours.

RED
I told you Zamani would take her.
Told you that’s all I knew. It’s
in your hands now.

He notices the way Liz is nervously opening and closing her
fist, running her fingers against the skin of her palm --

RED
Why do you do that?

-- she places her hand in her lap.

LIZ
I need your help with Zamani.

RED
How about we trade. You tell me, I
tell you. Tell me about that scar
on your palm. I’ve noticed how you
hide it.

Liz swallows. Reluctant.
31.

LIZ
There was a fire. I was fourteen.

RED
Someone tried to hurt you.

LIZ
Not exactly.

RED
But the scar, what does it remind
you of? When you touch it?
(reaching out)
May I?

Liz reluctantly extends her hand. Red takes her palm, runs
his fingertips over the scar tissue as if he might see into
her past. It’s uncomfortable. Red’s thumb follows the scar
up her arm, under her sleeve. He looks into her eyes.

RED
Is a child really what you want?

Liz pulls away. Stunned.

LIZ
How on earth do you know --

RED
I know it’s exciting, that you’ve
waited, but a baby can’t fix what
happened in the past.

She stands, indignant.

LIZ
How dare you. You lost the
privilege of speaking about
parenthood when you abandoned your
wife and daughter on Christmas Eve.
Addy, right? How old would she be
now? Thirty? You don’t know
because you walked away, so keep
the Fatherly advice to yourself.

RED
You won’t find the girl until you
learn to look at this differently.

LIZ
And how should I look at this?

RED
Like a criminal. It may come
easier to you than you think.
(MORE)
32.
RED (cont'd)
Shall I show you?
Genres: ["Crime","Thriller"]

Summary Liz Keen interrogates Reddington while battling with personal demons and seeking his help in catching Ranko Zamani. Meanwhile, General Ryker is outraged over his daughter's potential kidnapping and demands answers. After Liz faces a dangerous situation while transporting a young girl, tensions rise between her and Reddington.
Strengths "The scene effectively builds tension and suspense. Reddington and Liz's dynamic creates intrigue and adds depth to their characters. The reveal of Liz's personal past adds emotional weight to the scene."
Weaknesses "The dialogue can be a bit heavy-handed in places."
Critique
Suggestions - Consider adding more detailed physical descriptions of Liz and Red to help immerse the reader in the scene.

- Rewrite some of the dialogue to make it sound more natural and less expositional. For example, when Red points out the charm bracelet Liz is wearing, instead of commenting that it reminds him of his daughter, he could say something more revealing about Liz and her relationship with Beth.

- Add more tension to the scene by including specific actions or gestures that Liz and Red make. For example, when Red touches Liz's scar, does she pull away or flinch? When Liz stands up and confronts Red, does he remain seated or stand up as well?

- Consider adding more subtext and emotional layers to the scene, especially as it relates to Liz and Red's shared history. For example, Liz could react more strongly to Red's reference to his daughter, revealing a hidden resentment or guilt that she feels towards him.

- Edit the scene for pacing and clarity. Cut out any unnecessary dialogue and descriptions to keep the scene moving at a brisk pace, but make sure that the reader can follow the action and understand the characters' motivations.



Scene 12 -  The War Room
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 9
INT. F.B.I. / THE WAR ROOM - SAME

Liz and the other agents watch as Red walks the room eyeing
the MASSIVE WALL OF CLUES. He moves with a sense of pride
and curiosity. Takes in the details.

LIZ
So?

Red steps back. Considers the collage of PHOTOS and POLICE
REPORTS. Silence. Then with complete confidence --

RED
Irrelevant.

-- he TEARS DOWN A MUG SHOT. Rips down a surveillance photo.

RED
Waste of time.

RESSLER
Hey, you can’t just --

Red continues down the wall, pulling down precious documents,
moving pieces. The analysts watch in disbelief as Red weeds
out the unimportant. He grabs a surveillance photo and rips
it in half; holds up the half with the image of a YOUNG SERB.

RED
Miroslav. He’s more than a driver.
They call him The Chemist. Weapons
expert. Turned down MIT to work
for al-Qaeda in South Africa.

Red pins THE CHEMIST to the wall, then grabs a photo of a
GROUP OF MEN outside of bank --

RED
The German? Reinhardt? You’re
right that if money was involved he
laundered it, but his Swiss account
is a dead end. He runs everything
through a former IRS man named
Kagel. Works through the Caymans.
(eyes scanning)
What about the girl? What do you
have on the girl and her father?

An analyst works keyboard. Images of BETH fill the screens.
Beth’s school portrait. Beth and her father, General Ryker.

RED
What do you see, Lizzy?
33.

She blinks at Red. Only Tom calls her Lizzy.

LIZ
Well, the timeline would suggest a
singular event. Something in DC.
Not sure how the girl fits.

RED
What about the Chemist?

LIZ
Important. Well paid. What he’s
planning is expensive, maybe some
kind of attack.

RED
You’re thinking like a cop. What
does a criminal see?

RESSLER
Okay, this is nonsense.

LIZ
Taking the general’s daughter was
risky. She’s a well protected --

RED
-- she’s critical to the mission.

Cooper and Ressler exchange a suspect glance as Liz scans the
photos. She finds a picture of Zamani reaching into a pocket-
sized CONTAINER OF PILLS.

LIZ
Zamani’s sick. C.I.A. says he
carries Nipah virus. Dying makes
him dangerous. Nothing to lose.

RED
And the General’s daughter?

LIZ
Her father, the General, spent time
in Bosnia supporting NATO troops --

RED
Zamani’s home turf.

LIZ
-- he came under public scrutiny
when U.S. led forces bombed a
suspected chemical weapons facility
in the Bihac pocket region.
(MORE)
34.
LIZ (cont'd)
Never did find proof of the
weapons, but the bombing released
unknown chemical agents. Poisoned
the village and...
(then, realizing)
Jesus. His family.

Liz sees a photo of Zamani with his YOUNG SONS.

RED
Follow that pit in your stomach.

LIZ
Zamani’s wife and sons were made
sick in the bombing orchestrated by
General Ryker. They died. Zamani
survived. He wants revenge.
(realizing)
He hired the Chemist to build a
bomb. Detonate it in DC. Has a
return flight tomorrow at 10:00 AM
which means it’s gonna happen soon.
Tomorrow morning. His dying wish.

Red guides Liz. Exhilarated. The teacher and the pupil.

RED
Why no offer to trade the girl?

LIZ
Because he needs her. Zamani lost
his family, he’s gonna use the
General’s daughter to even the
score. Deliver the bomb.

The room ERUPTS into a hive of activity. Red quietly turns
to Liz, an olive branch.

RED
I have an acquaintance. They call
him the Innkeeper; runs a series of
safe-houses. Lean on him. He’ll
know where to find the Chemist.
Find the Chemist, you find Zamani.

LIZ
Where is this Innkeeper?

RED
If I tell you, you have to give me
something in return. I need to be
moved. Higher security.

LIZ
You’re inside the F.B.I.
35.

RED
My point exactly. It’s not safe.

EXT. FT. MCNAIR ARMY BASE - DAY

An F.B.I. convoy escorts RED’S ARMORED TRUCK past uniformed
guards and onto the historic U.S. military base on Greenleaf
Point. Majestic views of the Potomac. Sprawling lawns.

INT. SUN-DIAL MOTEL - DAY

Agents pour into the tiny motel near Reagan National. They
throw “THE INNKEEPER” to the ground. Hands behind his head.
Boots on his neck. As the Innkeeper begs, we JUMP BACK TO:

EXT. GENERAL’S ROW / FORT MCNAIR - DAY

Red steps from his armored vehicle and takes in his new home;
a breathtaking COLONIAL MANSION overlooking the Potomac. The
Army owned home is not only historic, but one of the most
well protected estates in all of Washington.

INSIDE RED’S HOUSE...

Agents remove the mirrors and silverware. Cameras are
installed. Red admires the beautiful coffered ceilings.
It’s a fitting home for a military man.
Genres: ["Action","Thriller"]

Summary FBI agents work to catch Ranko Zamani and stop an impending attack. Reddington gives them the name of an acquaintance who can help lead them to the Chemist. Meanwhile, General Ryker is outraged over the potential kidnapping of his daughter.
Strengths "The scene is tense with high stakes, and Reddington offers valuable insight into the case. There is good dialogue and conflict between characters."
Weaknesses "The scene is heavy on exposition and could use a bit more character development."
Critique
Suggestions 1. Increase tension: The scene could benefit from more tension and urgency. One way to achieve this could be to add a ticking clock element, where the agents are racing against the clock to prevent the bomb from going off. This could heighten the stakes and make the scene more exciting.

2. Clarify dialogue: Some of the dialogue in the scene is a bit unclear, especially when it comes to the technical details of the investigation. It might be helpful to clarify some of the jargon to make sure the audience can follow the conversation.

3. Give characters more distinct voices: While the dialogue itself is well-written, the characters all seem to talk in a similar way. It might be helpful to give each character more distinct voices - for example, Red could speak more confidently and with more authority, while Liz could be more analytical and cautious.

4. Use visuals to break up dialogue: While the scene is primarily driven by dialogue, it might benefit from more visual storytelling to break up the dialogue and add more interest to the visuals. For example, the camera could pan across the wall of clues as Red tears them down, or show close-ups of the photos as Liz studies them.

5. Consider the pacing: Depending on the tone and style of the film, the scene may benefit from a faster or slower pace. If it's a high-stakes thriller, it might make sense to move more quickly and keep the tension high. If it's a more character-driven drama, it might be better to slow down and allow more time for the characters to reflect on their situation.



Scene 13 -  The Capture and the Attack
  • Overall: 9.5
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 10
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. NEGLECTED APARTMENT / IVY CITY - DAY

SWAT TEAMS burst down the door and the inhabitants scramble.
Some sort of lab. The agents push through a door into a room
filled with elaborate BOMB MAKING SUPPLIES. They pull a
FIGURE down from the fire escape. Hands behind the head.

EXT. SHORELINE / FT. MCNAIR - DAY

Ressler finds Liz looking out at the boat yard, drinking in
the beauty of the water. A rare moment of peace.

RESSLER
They found the lab. Interrogating
the Chemist as we speak.

LIZ
We have the Chemist?

RESSLER
Big fish, right? Based on what we
pulled from his lab we think we’ve
caught it in time. Shut down his
operation. We’re making progress.

LIZ
What about the bomb?
36.

RESSLER
HDS is running samples. We’ll have
results within hours.

Liz stares out at the water. He lights a cigarette.

LIZ
I didn’t choose any of this.

He doesn’t believe her.

RESSLER
(feigned)
Of course not. He chose you.
There’s a bigger picture we’re not
seeing, but we will. Give it time.

LIZ
I gotta clear my head. Get out of
here for a bit. Grab a shower.

RESSLER
Don’t go too far.

As she walks away, he watches her go. There’s not a bone in
Ressler’s body that trusts this woman.

INT. LIZ’S BROWNSTONE - DUSK

Liz returns home. It’s like entering another world. Soft
music. Candlelight. In the entry, she finds a small PINK
WICKER ROCKING CHAIR stuffed with pink blankets, books and
bibs. Mylar balloons proclaim, ‘IT’S A GIRL!’ --

LIZ
Oh, my God. Did they say yes?!

-- in the arms of a stuffed animal Liz finds the ADOPTION
PAPERWORK. Opens it. Tears standing in her eyes.

LIZ
It’s OFFICIAL? How did you -- I
can’t believe...

Liz rounds the corner to find Tom, his back to her, seated at
a beautiful candlelight dinner. There’s Champagne. Flowers.
Her shoulders drop as Liz sits down and looks to Tom to see --

LIZ
We’re gonna have a baby!

-- TOM IS DUCT TAPED TO THE CHAIR.

He’s been BEATEN and TORTURED. Zip-ties on his wrists. Tape
over his mouth. Pure fucking horror in his eyes.
37.

Liz’s heart stops as a DARK FIGURE reaches past her breast,
into her jacket, and delicately removes her WEAPON. He’s a
colorless TWIG OF A MAN, chemical burns on his neck and jaw.
As he sits at the table between Liz and Tom we meet --

-- RANKO ZAMANI. An anemic little ghost. Looks like he was
raised in a veal cage. Zamani speaks with a thick SERBIAN
ACCENT. His lungs rattle with each breath.

ZAMANI
Tom and I already have met. Been
talking. Trying to figure out how
you knew I was in town.

Liz looks to Tom. There’s blood matted in his hair. The
vessels of one eye have ruptured.

ZAMANI
I tell him you took the General’s
daughter minutes before I was going
to. Forced me to re-think things,
which I did quite well, I think.

Zamani serves himself a slice of fish --

ZAMANI
But then your people come for my
Chemist friend.

-- pours himself a glass of Champagne and takes a drink.

ZAMANI
I was finished with the Chemist, so
you save me a payment for services.
For that, I thank you. But it did
make me wonder what else you know.
(pointed)
What else do you know?

LIZ
I don’t -- Tom, please...

Zamani takes a bite, chewing through heavy, hoarse breaths.

ZAMANI
Over here. I ask question. What
else do you know about my plan?

LIZ
An attack... uhm, a bomb maybe.
We’re not sure, we don’t know --

Zamani stands. Pours Liz a glass of Champagne.
38.

LIZ
-- we only knew about the girl.
Everything else... speculation.
(through tears)
Tom, babe, it’s gonna be okay --

SPLOOSH -- Zamani buries his STEAK KNIFE in the meat of Tom’s
thigh. Tom let’s out a MUFFLED SCREAM.

ZAMANI
What. Else. Do you know?

LIZ
(frantic / sobbing)
I swear... nothing...

Zamani holds his chest. Removes a POCKET-SIZED CONTAINER of
pills from his jacket and puts one on his tongue. Chases it
with Champagne. As he does, we see --

-- a penny-sized TATTOO on the back of Zamani’s hand. It’s
the SILHOUETTE OF A SUNBURST; jagged rays reaching out from
the center, violently whipping about.

ZAMANI
You are not as smart as Reddington
says. My friend, he was always so
obsessed with you. Not sure why.
(taunting)
What I have planned will make for
many casualties. Chemical agents,
no? What you call... biblical. So
now you have choice: stop me now
and save many Americans... or save
only one. What do you choose?

Zamani yanks the knife from Tom’s thigh and PLUNGES IT INTO
TOM’S ABDOMEN. He turns the knife, DRAGS IT to his sternum.
Liz SCREAMS. She LEAPS UP as --

-- Zamani leaves. Liz chases, but stutter-steps back to Tom.
Can’t have both. She runs to Tom. Holds him. Dials 911 as
Zamani vanishes. Blood everywhere. Phone ringing.

LIZ
Hold on, babe. You’re gonna be
fine. We’re gonna get you help.

EMERGENCY OPERATOR (O.S.)
911. What’s your emergency?

CUT TO BLACK.

END OF ACT THREE
39.

ACT FOUR
Genres: ["Action","Thriller","Drama"]

Summary Liz discovers that the FBI has found the lab and is interrogating the Chemist. Meanwhile, she returns home to celebrate with Tom, only to find him beaten and tortured by Ranko Zamani, who was looking for the Chemist and seeking information about his plan for an attack. After Zamani stabs Tom, Liz is left devastated and must call for emergency assistance to save him.
Strengths "The tension and sense of danger throughout the scene are palpable, and the emotional impact of Tom's torture and attack is devastating. The plot twists are unexpected and keep the audience on the edge of their seats."
Weaknesses "The dialogue could be more nuanced and realistic in places, and some of the character motivations are not fully explained."
Critique There are a few critiques for this scene. Firstly, the opening scene with the SWAT teams and bomb-making supplies feels disconnected from the rest of the scene. There is no clear indication of how this connects to the rest of the plot or characters.

Secondly, the interaction between Ressler and Liz feels contrived and lacking in depth. Their dialogue is uninteresting, and their dynamic is not well-established, making it difficult for the audience to invest in their relationship or backstory.

Thirdly, the reveal of Tom being duct-taped and tortured at the end feels like a cheap plot device and lacks emotional impact. The scene could have benefited from more buildup and tension before the reveal to make it more impactful and meaningful to the characters and audience.

Overall, the scene could benefit from more cohesiveness and emotional depth to make it feel more engaging and relevant to the larger story.
Suggestions 1. The beginning scene with the SWAT team feels disconnected from the rest of the plot. It would be helpful to establish the purpose of the raid and how it ties into the main storyline.

2. The dialogue between Ressler and Liz could be tightened up to make it more impactful. Consider eliminating some of the filler dialogue and getting to the heart of their conversation.

3. The transition from Liz’s moment of happiness to the revelation of Tom’s torture feels abrupt and jarring. Build up the tension slowly to increase the impact of the twist.

4. Consider giving more background and context for the antagonist, Zamani. This would help increase the stakes and make his actions feel more impactful.

5. Directorial choices such as camera angles, lighting, and sound design can be used to heighten the tension and emotion of the scene. Be specific with these choices to create a more immersive experience for the audience.



Scene 14 -  Betrayal and Desperation
  • Overall: 10.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 10
  • Characters: 10
  • Dialogue: 10
INT. AMBULANCE - NIGHT

Doors FLY OPEN. Medics swarm. Hospital staffers rush to
transport Tom out of the ambulance as --

WHAM!!!

-- we BURST THROUGH emergency room doors. Down a hall. Liz
runs alongside Tom’s gurney, covered in smeared blood. Tom’s
drifting in and out of consciousness. Voices fading until...

INT. HOSPITAL / WAITING ROOM - LATER

POLICE interview Liz. There’s no sound. All she can hear is
their surreal murmur, as if underwater. Liz looks up to find
Ressler entering the ER. He approaches, arms open, and Liz
collapses into him.

LATER...

Liz sits with Ressler. Trying to process. Still numb.

RESSLER
The Chemist. We lost him. Hung
himself just over an hour ago.
(pressing)
I totally understand, and we don’t
have to talk about this if you
can’t, but it’s critical that you
tell me anything Zamani may have
said. Did you learn anything?

LIZ
(elsewhere)
It’s biological.

RESSLER
The bomb? He said that?

LIZ
He said it’s gonna be biblical.

INT. HOSPITAL ROOM - NIGHT

Tom lies in a hospital bed. Tubes and wires protruding from
his chest. Liz sits beside Tom. Holding his hand. Watching
machines breathe for the man she loves.

LIZ
Babe... if you can hear me... you
can’t let this happen. Not today.
This was supposed to be a happy
day. The beginning...
(MORE)
40.
LIZ (cont'd)
(scared / searching)
You’re the one good thing in my
life. I don’t know how it works
without you. Don’t leave me alone.

We leave her, praying over her dying husband.

EXT. LIZ’S CAR (PARKED) - NIGHT

It’s raining now. Liz sits in her car. Hiding from the
world and sobbing. Her emotions swelling inside until --

-- Liz repeatedly POUNDS THE STEERING WHEEL in a violent
outburst. The surge of pure rage CATAPULTS us to:

INT. RED’S HOUSE / FT. MCNAIR - NIGHT

We follow Liz down a corridor. Fueled by anger. Fearless.

IN THE STUDY...

Red stands. Liz is on fire. A boiling pot of crazy.

LIZ
Did you send him? Are you the one
who did this?

RED
Lizzy, what’s [wrong] --

LIZ
Don’t call me Lizzy, goddamnit. He
was in my house. My husband’s on a
ventilator because Zamani came --

Red face goes blank.

RED
Tell me what happened.

LIZ
Don’t play stupid. You’re the only
thing connecting us. He told me
that you’ve talked to him about me.

RED
Liz, you have to tell me what
happened. What did you see?

LIZ
What did I... I saw the love of my
life being tortured. Disemboweled.

RED
No, what did you see?
41.

LIZ
Stop acting like we’re some kind of
team. I don’t know you. I didn’t
ask for any of --

RED
This is bigger than us, Liz. We’re
at the center of something that you
can’t possibly understand.

LIZ
Goddamnit, I want the truth!

RED
Honestly?! The truth? The truth
is Zamani did you a favor, Lizzy.

Suddenly, Liz pulls THE PEN from her pocket --

STABS RED IN THE NECK

-- spins around and traps him in a military choke-hold.

LIZ
I told you not to call me Lizzy.

She holds her thumb over the bloody PUNCTURE WOUND in Red’s
neck. His breathing quickens. His eyes bulge.

LIZ (CONT’D)
Now, you were in the army, so you
know from training I just punched a
hole in your carotid. The artery
will likely vasospasm; reduce its
own flow. Best chance, one minute
before you pass out. So here’s how
it works, asshole...
(fearless)
You tell me how I find Zamani and
make this right, or I let you die
right here. Understand?

RED
Yes, but...

Red gasps for breath, clinging to life.

RED
...if you let me die, you’ll never
learn the truth about your husband.

LIZ
You know nothing about my husband.
42.

Red allows a faint little smile. Strangely, Liz is the one
who now looks trapped. Wheels turning. She has no choice
but to call --

LIZ
GUARD, I NEED A MEDIC!

Red falls to the floor. Guards rush in as Liz collapses next
to Red trying to stop the bleeding. She barks orders. Blood
everywhere. We jump from the chaotic frenzy to:
Genres: ["Crime","Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Liz's husband, Tom, is in critical condition after being tortured by Ranko Zamani, who was looking for information about his plan for an attack. Liz is left devastated and seeking revenge. She interrogates Reddington, believing he may have sent Zamani, and stabs him in a violent outburst. Reddington tells Liz that Zamani did her a favor and that they are at the center of something bigger than them. Liz holds Reddington hostage, demanding answers on how to find Zamani and make things right. Reddington offers her the truth about her husband if she lets him live.
Strengths "The scene has a high level of tension and suspense, with emotional performances from the characters. The dialogue is well-written and reveals more about the complicated relationship between Liz and Reddington."
Weaknesses "The scene may be too intense or violent for some viewers. Some may find Reddington's sudden offer of the truth about Tom's situation to be a convenient plot point."
Critique This scene is well-written, with a clear escalation of tension and emotion. The action is well-described, and the dialogue helps to move the story forward. However, there are a few areas that could be improved.

Firstly, the action at the beginning of the scene feels a bit rushed. It would be beneficial to slow down and give more detail to the chaos of Tom being rushed to the hospital. The impact of this moment could be heightened by focusing on the emotions of those involved.

Additionally, while the dialogue is strong, there is a lot of exposition that could be cut down. Instead of having Ressler explain the situation to Liz, there could be a visual element that shows what is happening. This would allow for the scene to flow more naturally and prevent the dialogue from feeling forced.

Finally, the scene could benefit from more sensory detail. While there is a lot of action and emotion, adding in more sensory details would help to ground the reader in the moment and create a stronger connection to the characters. Details such as the smell of blood or the sound of machines beeping could make this scene even more impactful.

Overall, this is a strong scene that could use a few minor tweaks to make it more powerful.
Suggestions There are a few suggestions I have for this scene:

1. Establish the setting better: It's unclear where this hospital is located and why Liz and Tom are there. Adding a line or two to establish this would make the scene more cohesive.

2. Add more emotional depth: The scene jumps from Tom being rushed into the hospital to Liz sitting with Ressler, to her praying over Tom in his hospital bed. It's a lot of emotional whiplash without much buildup or payoff. Adding more details about Liz and Tom's relationship, and their connection, would make these moments more poignant.

3. Tighten the dialogue: Some of the dialogue is a bit on the nose, especially when Liz confronts Red. Making the dialogue more subtle and nuanced would make the scene feel more realistic and tense.

4. Be mindful of pacing: The scene jumps from the hospital to Liz in her car to her confronting Red. While this can work in some cases, here it feels a bit disjointed. Breaking up the scene into smaller segments or adding more transitional elements would make the pacing feel smoother.



Scene 15 -  Betrayal and Escape
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 7
  • Dialogue: 8
EXT. FT. MCNAIR - LATER

It’s quiet. The silence is jarring. Liz stands with Ressler
and Cooper outside the house. Liz is still shaky.

RESSLER
Why would he try to kill himself?

LIZ
Why’s he doing any of this? It
happened. I can’t explain.

RESSLER
Your back was conveniently toward
the camera, so the footage is
inconclusive, but you know what I
think? I think you’re lying.
You’ve lost your objectivity --

LIZ
Objectivity? What do you expect?

COOPER
Liz, calm down.

LIZ
My husband was stabbed. He’s on
life support. I have a house full
of beat cops waiting for my
statement.

COOPER
Liz, this is about your safety.
The last thing I want is you in the
same room with this guy.

LIZ
(realizing)
Don’t push me out of this.

COOPER
Liz. It’s not a request. Go home.

Liz turns, defeated. As she walks away they watch her go.
43.

RESSLER
(mistrustful)
Doesn’t feel right. There’s
something she’s not telling us.

INT. LIZ AND TOM’S BROWNSTONE - NIGHT

Liz sits in a fog, doing another round of interviews with the
POLICE. There’s no sound. Only a dull BUZZING SOUND. Liz
watches the detectives comb through her life. They collect
samples. Take pictures. But Liz can’t take her eyes off of
Tom’s DRIED-BLACK BLOOD in the carpet.

LATER...

After the police are gone. Liz is on her hands and knees
scrubbing the blood out of the carpet with a bucket and
brush. As she does the BUZZING SOUND swells, mimicking her
rising frustration.

The harder she scrubs the more helpless Liz feels. She is
completely powerless. Finally, Liz THROWS the brush across
the room. Bloody water splatters the wall as we CUT TO:

INT. WALTER REED MEDICAL CENTER - DAWN

We follow Liz down a long, narrow hallway. She flashes her
badge. Moves past security. Finds Ressler who is speaking
with another agent outside Red’s room.

RESSLER
Can’t go in. He’s with the Nurse.
(then)
You shouldn’t even be here.

LIZ
I know. I was out of line before,
but I can’t just sit at home and
wait while there’s a chemical...

Liz trails off as the MALE NURSE exits Red’s room. Pushes
his cart past. She waits until the Nurse is out of earshot.

LIZ
This isn’t just about me and Tom.
That weapon is going to detonate.
We still don’t know where. Red is
willing to talk to me. Please.
Give me ten minutes.

Reluctant, Ressler nods. Allows Liz past. But as Liz steps
into RED’S ROOM she sees the bed is EMPTY. The window OPEN.
Her entire world seems to slow down and Liz realizes...

Red is GONE.
44.

Liz steps back into the hall. Sees the MALE NURSE who just
left Red’s room. He steps into the elevator. As he locks
eyes with Liz, we recognize the Nurse as Red’s chauffeur from
the opening scene: THE MAN IN THE GREY FLANNEL SUIT. Liz
steps toward him, dizzy with fear, but the elevator doors
close and we JUMP TO:

INT. PUBLIC BATHROOM - UNKNOWN

Red cuts into his shoulder with a surgical scalpel. He opens
the muscle with the tip of the blade. Digs out the tiny RFID
microchip. He uses the tip of the knife to hold the chip up
to the light. Admires the device. The sound of an oncoming
whistle tells us we’re...

INT. UNION STATION - SAME

Red shoulders his way through the Rotunda. He’s now wearing
a stolen topcoat and fedora. He finds a table outside a busy
coffee shop and sits down next to a thin, HUNCHED FIGURE. As
the man turns, we reveal it’s Zamani. The two men hug.

RED
It’s good to see you, old friend.

CUT TO BLACK.

END OF ACT FOUR
45.

ACT FIVE

INT. UNION STATION - SAME

Zamani sits with Red, genuinely humbled.

ZAMANI
Face to face. What an honor.

RED
I felt it was important to handle
these final details myself.

Red hands Zamani a PASSPORT and TRAVEL DOCUMENTS.

RED
How did things go with Agent Keen?

ZAMANI
Paid her a visit like you asked.

RED
And Tom? The Husband?

ZAMANI
Like you asked. Small price to pay
for getting me out of the country.

INT. WALTER REED MEDICAL CENTER - SAME

The hospital is in lock-down. F.B.I. response teams are in
full force. Ressler hangs up his phone, turns to Cooper.

RESSLER
You do realize this is exactly what
he wanted?! To get here. Where
security’s weak. We played right
into his hand.

LIZ
Why escape? He just surrendered?

RESSLER
Who knows?! This guy has a plan
and he’s played us at every turn.

A breathless TECH bursts into the room, chest heaving.

TECH
We were able to remotely reactivate
the chip. He’s at Columbus Circle.

COOPER
My God. Union Station.
46.

LIZ
Wait. No. If Red pulled the chip
he would have destroyed --

COOPER
I need you to stay here.

LIZ
Red is smarter than this.

The agents race out, leaving Liz, as we JUMP BACK TO:
Genres: ["Drama","Action","Thriller"]

Summary Liz interrogates Reddington for answers regarding her husband's torture and stabbing. When Reddington offers to lead her to Zamani and reveals the truth about her husband, Liz holds him hostage in exchange for answers. Reddington uses this opportunity to escape and remove a microchip from his shoulder, meeting with Zamani in Union Station.
Strengths "The tension and suspense of Liz and Red's interaction, the reveal of Red's escape and meeting with Zamani, the emotional impact of Liz's devastation over her husband's condition."
Weaknesses "Some dialogue feels exposition-heavy and could be more natural."
Critique
Suggestions Some suggestions to improve this scene:

- Add more description and visual detail to set the mood and tone of the scene. Use sensory details to immerse the audience in the environment and create a sense of tension and uncertainty.

- Develop the characters more by giving them distinct personalities and backstories that inform their behavior and motivations. Create more conflict between Liz, Ressler, and Cooper to heighten the stakes and create a sense of urgency for the audience.

- Consider introducing another subplot or twist to keep the audience engaged and guessing. The current plot feels somewhat predictable and formulaic, so adding an unexpected complication or reveal could make the scene more memorable and impactful.

- Use more dynamic camera angles and editing techniques to add visual interest and energy to the scene. Experiment with different shot sizes, movement, and pacing to create a sense of momentum and tension.



Scene 16 -  The National Zoo
  • Overall: 9.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 9
  • Dialogue: 9
INT. UNION STATION - SAME

Red sits with Zamani, inspecting his eyes.

RED
Word is you have big plans.

Zamani shrugs.

RED
Tell me one thing: the General’s
daughter. Why take such a risk?

ZAMANI
This is about so much more than one
girl; it’s about the children. All
of them. The ones who will grow up
with my memory living inside them,
as I’ve lived with the memory your
country gave me...

Zamani holds his chest. Shallow breaths. He reaches into
his jacket and removes his pocket-sized CONTAINER OF PILLS.
As he takes one out. Places it on his tongue.

ZAMANI
I’m giving their plague back to
them. Giving it to their children.
In sixty years they’ll be talking
about this day, about my legacy.

RED
We should all be so fortunate.

Red stands as F.B.I. AGENTS STORM THE ROTUNDA --

-- RESSLER leads the charge, pushing through the crowd. In
his earpiece, he’s guided by a TECH in a surveillance van,
but when he arrives at the table Red and Zamani are gone.

TECH (O.S.)
Up ahead. Fifty yards.
47.

Ressler moves toward Red. Toward the trains. Red quickly
opens his phone and dials as we INTERCUT with Liz inside --

RED’S HOSPITAL ROOM

-- her CELL RINGS. Liz answers.

RED (O.S.)
There’s a wrinkle. Zamani wants
more than the General’s daughter.

LIZ
(perplexed)
Red?! Where are -- how did you...

She steps away from the room. Away from the police.

RED (O.S.)
He’s after children.

LIZ
You son of a bitch, if you think
I’m not gonna hunt you down and --

RED (O.S.)
We don’t have time. I need you to
set aside your anger. Listen to
me. I think between the two of us
there may be an answer.

Liz bursts through the doors and steps --

OUTSIDE THE HOSPITAL.

-- scans the parking lot. Eyes searching. Halfway expecting
to find Red watching her.

RED (O.S.)
I need you to tell me what Zamani
said. Think back. What happened
in your house? What did you see?

Liz tries to remember, her world SPINNING.

LIZ
He, uhm, he asked about the girl...
and about the Chemist...

IMAGES FLIP THROUGH LIZ’S MEMORY. We see FLASHES of the
confrontation. Of Zamani torturing Tom --

RED (O.S.)
What did you see? At your house?

-- the dizzy assault of MEMORIES take Liz to:
48.


INT. LIZ’S BROWNSTONE - (FLASHBACK)

We remember Zamani standing over Tom. He opens his container
of pills and places one on his tongue. As he does we see the
penny-sized TATTOO on the back of Zamani’s hand --

LIZ (O.S.)
There was a tattoo.

-- it’s the SILHOUETTE OF A SUNBURST; jagged rays reaching
out from the center, violently whipping about.

RED (O.S.)
Zamani’s Serbian Orthodox. He
wouldn’t tattoo himself. Body
modification is a desecration.

LIZ (O.S.)
I know what I saw. This mark, I’ve
seen it before --

RED (O.S.)
It wasn’t a tattoo.

ON LIZ (PRESENT)

As she wrestles with a memory. Thinking back.

RED (O.S.)
Where did you see it, Lizzy?

INT. LIZ’S BROWNSTONE (FLASHBACK)

Liz remembers her frantic morning. Being late. Tom holding
the TWO TOURISM BROCHURES for his field trip.

TOM
Air and Space or the National Zoo?

Liz flicks the zoo brochure. We see the same SUNBURST IMAGE
in the brochure. The logo for the Smithsonian National Zoo.

LIZ (O.S.)
It wasn’t a tattoo...
(realizing)
...it was a stamp.

BACK TO LIZ (PRESENT)

LIZ
He’s gonna bomb the National Zoo.
49.

INT. UNION STATION - SAME

Ressler shadows Red through the station. But as the train
pulls away, Ressler sees the platform is empty.

RESSLER
Where did he go?

TECH (O.S.)
In front of you. Twenty yards.

RESSLER
There’s nobody.

Ressler sees the TUNNEL and jumps down onto THE TRACKS.

INT. LIZ’S CAR (MOVING) - SAME

Liz weaves through traffic. Cell phone to her ear.

LIZ
(on the phone)
Assistant Director Harold Cooper.

OPERATOR (O.S.)
What’s your clearance code?

LIZ
I don’t... I’m not sure... it’s my
first day and they haven’t issued --

OPERATOR
Without a clearance code I can’t --

Liz hangs up. Dials Ressler. She’s sent to voice mail.

LIZ
(on the phone)
Ressler, call me. The zoo.
Zamani’s gonna hit the zoo.
Genres: ["Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Reddington and Zamani discuss his plans to release a plague on everyone's children to give them his legacy. Meanwhile, Liz and Ressler search for Zamani and the answers to save the children he is after.
Strengths "Strong emotional impact and intense action."
Weaknesses "Some plot points are overly dramatic and bordering on unrealistic."
Critique
Suggestions Here are some suggestions to improve the scene:

1. Add more tension: The scene lacks tension and the dialogue feels flat. Adding more emotional depth to the interaction between the two characters would make the scene more engaging.

2. Clarify character motivations: Red's motivation for wanting to find out about Zamani's plans is not clear. The audience needs to understand why Red is so invested in this situation.

3. Develop the FBI agents' characters: The FBI agents are just background characters in the scene. Developing their characters more would give the audience a reason to care about what happens to them.

4. Cut unnecessary dialogue: Some of the dialogue feels unnecessary and could be cut to make the scene more concise.

5. Change the structure: The back and forth conversations between Red and Liz and the FBI agents feels disjointed. Restructuring the scene could make it feel more cohesive and smooth.



Scene 17 -  The Bomb
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 7
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. UNION STATION - SAME

Agents shove through the station. Searching for the bomb.
Cooper grabs a little girl with a backpack and turns her
around. It’s not Beth. He searches the crowd as --

-- another agent sees a GIRL. Whips her around. Again, not
Beth. It’s a frantic search. Backpacks. Dark haired little
girls. A needle in a haystack.

EXT. THE NATIONAL ZOO - SAME

The hand of a child is STAMPED at the entry. The same PENNY-
SIZED TATTOO Liz saw on Zamani’s hand: an ADMISSION STAMP.
50.

INSIDE THE ZOO...

Liz pushes past families. Children everywhere. She spots
BETH SITTING ON A BENCH. The little girl looks terrified.

LIZ
Beth, remember me? Are you alone?

BETH
He said to wait here for my Daddy.

Liz sees Beth’s BACKPACK and carefully unzips it to reveal --

THE BOMB.

It’s a marvel of molded plastic and parallel circuitry. A
digital countdown reads “00:03 MIN / 00:13 SEC”. Liz takes a
heart pounding breath. Reaches for the shoulder strap.

BETH
(through tears)
He said not to take it off...

Beth unzips her sweater to reveal a TANGLE OF WIRES wrapped
around her torso. The backpack is booby trapped. Slowly,
Liz reaches out. Her phone RINGS. She JUMPS. Answers.

RED (O.S.)
Whatever you do, don’t touch it.

LIZ
There’s less than three minutes. I
gotta evacuate... call the bomb --

RED (O.S.)
Your people will never be there in
time. My friend. He’s on his way.

LIZ
Your friend? What [friend] --

The call disconnects as we’re HURLED BACK TO:

INT. SUBWAY TUNNELS - SAME

A flashlight beam dances in the dark as Ressler chases Red
INTO THE TUNNELS. Something falls from Red’s pocket before
Red slows down. Slump shouldered. Out of breath.

RESSLER
Hands in the air.
51.

Ressler trains his WEAPON on Red. Picks up the small tin
canister Red dropped as THE LIGHT OF A TRAIN illuminates the
tunnel. Reveals it’s not Red he’s been chasing but Zamani.
He clutches his chest. Lungs failing.

RESSLER
GET OFF THE TRACK.

Ressler steps closer. The TRAIN is almost upon them.

ZAMANI
Tell the General his girl was an
“unfortunate civilian casualty”.

He opens his arms as --

THE TRAIN EVISCERATES ZAMANI.

Ressler ducks into the nearby alcove. Inches from the train.
As it passes, he opens Zamani’s medicine canister and dumps
the contents into his palm. Among the pills he finds --

RESSLER
Son of a bitch.

-- the blood crusted RFID CHIP Red carved from his shoulder.
Genres: ["Action","Thriller","Drama"]

Summary Liz finds the bomb and a trapped little girl in the National Zoo and is tasked with evacuating the area before it explodes. Reddington warns her not to touch the bomb and offers the help of a friend. Ressler chases Reddington into subway tunnels where he discovers that Zamani, not Reddington, has been fleeing. Zamani is hit and killed by a train, and Ressler finds a blood-covered RFID chip that Reddington had removed from his shoulder.
Strengths
  • Tense action sequence
  • Unexpected plot twist with Zamani
  • High stakes with the bomb and trapped girl
Weaknesses
  • Lack of character development in minor characters
  • Some dialogue feels forced
Critique While this scene has a strong level of tension and action, it could benefit from more character development and clearer story progression.

Firstly, the opening section where the agents are searching for the bomb feels repetitive with its constant disappointment that each girl they check is not Beth. This could be condensed to highlight the urgency of the situation, as there is a ticking clock with the bomb's countdown.

Secondly, there is a lack of emotional depth with the character of Beth. While she is meant to be a victim, she is mostly used as a plot device for the discovery of the bomb. Developing her character more, such as showing her fear and desperation for her father, would heighten the stakes and make the situation more engaging.

Finally, the reveal of the RFID CHIP at the end feels jarring and unexplained. This piece of information could have been set up and hinted at throughout the script, rather than seemingly coming out of nowhere.

Overall, this scene has potential but could benefit from tightening up the pacing and adding more character development.
Suggestions - Consider adding more tension and urgency to the scene in Union Station by using shorter, more impactful sentences. For example, instead of "It's a frantic search. Backpacks. Dark haired little girls. A needle in a haystack," you could write "The search intensifies. Agents comb the crowd, scanning faces and backpacks for any sign of the bomb."
- Clarify the connections between the different locations and characters. For example, it's not immediately clear why Liz is at the zoo or how she knew to look there for Beth.
- Cut down on redundant and clunky dialogue. For example, instead of "There’s less than three minutes. I gotta evacuate... call the bomb," simply write "Less than three minutes. Need to evacuate and call bomb squad."
- Consider adding more description and specificity to the bomb itself. What does it look like? How does it feel in Liz's hands? This can heighten the stakes and make the threat feel more tangible.



Scene 18 -  Desperate Measures
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 7
EXT. NATIONAL ZOO - SAME

Liz is on the phone, calling for backup, when she glances at
the timer on the bomb. “01 MIN / 00:16 SEC”. Their fate is
all but sealed. Liz looks to Beth. Behind her, she sees --

-- a UKRAINIAN MAN WITH A DUFFLE BAG emerge through the sea
of kids. He’s bald. Blond eyebrows. Looks like a thumb.
The Ukrainian sits on the bench next to Beth and removes a
TOOL KIT from his bag.

LIZ
Who are you? What are you doing?

The Ukrainian barks at Liz in Slavic as he cuts open Beth’s
backpack with a pair of surgical scissors.

LIZ
I don’t know what you’re saying.

He motions for them to be still. Liz holds Beth. Watches in
disbelief as the Ukrainian works to dismantle the bomb. Beth
tries not to move, but she can’t help it. The Ukrainian is
frantic. Screaming. Confusion in a foreign language. Beth
cries as Liz sees --

-- “00:32 SEC”. This is it. She finds Beth’s eyes.
52.

LIZ
You know, I was really scared once,
too. I was all alone, but I had a
secret weapon to help me. My Daddy
gave it to me. You wanna see my
secret weapon?

Beth quivers. Nods yes. Liz slowly, gently, opens her palm
to reveal her BURN SCAR.

LIZ
I never show this to anybody. It’s
super special. Like magic.

BETH
What does it do?

Liz is soft and calm. Pure motherly instinct.

LIZ
Any time I feel scared or afraid I
touch it... and it makes all the
bad things go away, makes me brave.
Do you want to see if it can make
you brave?

Beth nods. Places her palm in Liz’s palm. As she does, Liz
wraps her free arm around the girl and closes her eyes. The
SOUND EVAPORATES. Tranquil silence. It’s as if the entire
world falls away, nothing else matters, until --

UKRAINIAN
ÚZASNY!!!

-- Liz’s eyes POP OPEN. The Ukrainian throws his arms around
Liz, talking a mile a minute. Kiss her square on the mouth.

LIZ
Did you stop it?

He removes the bomb from the backpack. The countdown clock
is stopped at “00:12 SEC”. A collective exhale as --

LIZ
HE STOPPED IT.

-- the Ukrainian places the device in his duffle bag.

LIZ
What? Wait. What are you...

RED (O.S.)
Consider the device his payment.
53.

The Ukrainian turns to see RED approaching through the crowd.
They embrace. The Ukrainian picks Red up in a full-on bear
hug. He then turns and zips his bag, blows Liz a kiss, and
saunters off into the zoo with a bomb in his duffle bag.

LIZ
What the -- WAIT! He can’t...
that’s a biological weapon.

RED
He’s fascinated with the things.
Has more use for it than I do.
(to Beth)
Run along, now. Daddy’s here.

Beth whips around to see GENERAL RYKER running toward them.
With RESSLER. Surrounded by agents. Beth grabs Liz’s hand.
Looks at the scar. It really is magic. As the AGENTS rush
in, Red lowers himself to his knees, hands behind his head.

LIZ
I’m gonna ask you again. I deserve
the truth. Did you send Zamani to
kill my husband?

RED
We’re going to make a great team.

F.B.I. AGENTS storm Red. Guns drawn. Ressler takes him down
but Red’s eyes never leave Liz. He smiles as if she has just
passed some strange, perverted test.

BETH (O.S.)
DADDY!

General Ryker lowers himself to his knee and Beth jumps into
her father’s arms. As they embrace, Ryker smiles to Liz.

GENERAL RYKER
Thank you.

A weight is lifted. Liz’s shoulder’s drop. We HEAR:

COOPER (O.S.)
Who. Is. The Ukrainian?

RED (O.S.)
His name slips my memory.
Genres: ["Thriller","Action","Drama"]

Summary Liz tries to save a group of children from being killed by a bomb plant and confronts Reddington about the death of her husband. The Ukrainian man saves them by dismantling the bomb and Reddington reveals that the man had been entrusted with the device. They both escape FBI custody, and Reddington tells Liz the truth about her husband.
Strengths "The tension is high throughout the scene with the bomb countdown adding to the suspense. The character of Liz is portrayed well in demonstrating her desperation, tenderness with the child, and rage towards Reddington. The Ukrainian man's actions are a surprise twist, and Reddington's motives are still unclear."
Weaknesses "The explanation of the Ukrainian man's actions and his relationship with Reddington is left vague. The dialogue between characters is not the strongest point of the scene."
Critique Firstly, in terms of formatting, the scene is missing scene headings for each new location. This can be confusing for the reader and should be fixed.

In terms of the content itself, there are some issues with believability and clarity. For example, it's not clear how Liz suddenly establishes a rapport with the Ukrainian man and convinces him to dismantle the bomb. The dialogue between them feels forced and unnatural, making it difficult to fully believe in the stakes of the scene. Additionally, the scene description could be more specific in explaining how the Ukrainian is able to dismantle the bomb - without this clarity, it makes it hard for the reader to visualize and understand the action.

Furthermore, the sudden appearance of Red and the resolution of the bomb plot feels rushed and convenient. There could be more tension built up in the scene and more obstacles for Liz and the others to overcome to make the resolution feel earned.

Overall, the scene could benefit from more work on the characters, their motivations, and the build-up to the climax of the bomb plot.
Suggestions Overall, this scene could benefit from more tension and stakes. The bomb threat is the primary source of tension, but it is resolved very quickly and easily with the Ukrainian dismantling it. Consider adding obstacles or complications in dismantling the bomb to create more tension and uncertainty for the characters and audience.

Additionally, the Ukrainian character is introduced very abruptly. Consider adding earlier hints or clues that there is someone suspicious who could be involved in the bomb threat. This will also increase tension as the characters and audience wonder who this person is and what their motives are.

Finally, the dialogue between Liz and the Ukrainian could be more nuanced and interesting. Consider adding more depth to their interaction, such as the Ukrainian revealing his motives or backstory. This will make the scene more engaging and memorable.



Scene 19 -  Betrayed
  • Overall: 8.5
  • Concept: 9
  • Plot: 8
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 9
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM / F.B.I. - DAY

A review is underway. Red sits across from Liz, Cooper,
Ressler and a team of D.O.J. LIAISONS. Tempers run hot.
54.

COOPER
You gave away a biological weapon.

RED
So the bomb is gone. It didn’t
detonate. The girl’s safe. Zamani
is dead. Frankly, I think all this
worked out swimmingly.

RESSLER
(livid)
This was never about Zamani. You
surrendered and infiltrated the
F.B.I. to get at our intelligence.
To get that weapon.

RED
Agent Ressler, are you suggesting I
would surrender myself and use your
resources to hunt down Zamani and
settle a score? Steal a biological
weapon? That all of this is part
of a some larger plot?
(flat)
I think it’s more likely I tried to
help in good faith, but had to
finish the job on my own because
you were too goddamned stupid.

Ressler stands, livid.

COOPER
I think we’re finished.

RED
This was fun. Let’s do it again.

Cooper closes his notebook. Meeting over. But as the agents
begin to gather their things, Red remains seated.

RED
No, really. Let’s do it again.
You do understand, Zamani was only
the first.

COOPER
First what?

RED
Name. On the Blacklist.

Cooper looks confused. Throws Liz a glance.

COOPER
What’s... the Blacklist?
55.

RED
It’s why we’re all here, of course.
My wish list. A list of names I’ve
been cultivating for over twenty-
five years; politicians, mobsters,
hackers and spies.

RESSLER
We have our own list.

RED
Please, Agent Ressler, we all know
your “Top Ten” is little more than
a publicity campaign. Junior high
bullies at best. I’m talking about
the criminals who matter. The men
I’ve spent my life protecting --
ones you can’t find because you
don’t know they exist. Zamani was
a small fish. I’m Ahab. But if
you want the whales on my list, you
gotta play by my rules.

Cooper sits, intrigued. Liz lingers.

RED
One: I never stay in the same
location two nights in a row. Two:
I want security. I’ve already
vetted a list of twenty-four Secret
Service agents, pick two from my
list. Three: I want an RFID tag
imbedded in my neck -- not that
garbage from VeriChip you stuck in
my arm, I want the DARPA tested,
fully encrypted, 8-millimeter tag.
Four: whatever I tell you falls
under an immunity package that I
negotiate myself. And finally...
most importantly...
(flat)
I speak only with Elizabeth Keen.

The room turns to Liz in the doorway, but she is gone.

INT. HOSPITAL HALLWAY - DAY

Cooper stands with Liz outside Tom’s room.

COOPER
...do you understand? We have one
of the most dangerous criminals in
the history of this agency in our
possession.
(MORE)
56.
COOPER (cont'd)
Imagine what he could provide --
the kind of access the F.B.I.,
C.I.A., N.S.A. could only dream of.
Liz the deal’s in place, but he’ll
only talk to you.

LIZ
Then maybe you should have checked
with me before you cut the deal.

Liz walks off. Has a dying husband to tend too.

INT. LIZ AND TOM’S BROWNSTONE - SAME

Liz is on her hands and knees trying to scrub Tom’s blood out
of the carpet. She sits back. Looks at the mess. She wants
this hideous reminder out of her life for good so we CUT TO:

LATER...

The furniture is shoved aside and Liz is ripping back the
carpet with a claw hammer. Going mad. She pulls back a
swath, but stops when she sees --

-- a series of CUTS IN THE SUB-FLOOR. Boards that have been
removed and replaced. It’s a HIDING PLACE. She uses the
hammer to pry up the boards to reveal a LARGE DUFFLE BAG.

AT THE KITCHEN TABLE...

Liz sits in silence staring at the bag. Heart in her throat.
She finally finds the courage to unzip the bag to discover --

-- BUNDLES OF CASH. Lots of them. Several hundred thousand
dollars worth. Liz sits thunderstruck. She reaches into the
side pocket of the duffle bag where she finds --

-- a BUL M-5 PISTOL. She holds the gun in her fist. A sick,
drunken feeling washes over Liz as she reaches back into the
pocket and removes a bundle of --

-- PASSPORTS. Twelve of them. Each with a different name
and nationality. Each one with a PHOTO OF HER HUSBAND TOM.
Liz trembles. Red was right. The man she has come to love
is an imposter. That eerie, drunken feeling carries us to:

INT. HOSPITAL - DAY

The tubes are gone, but Tom is still unconscious. Liz sits
at his side. Betrayed. Considering the man she thought she
loved.

TOM (O.S.)
Was I dreaming?
57.

Liz blinks up. Sees Tom staring up at her. She looks into
the gaze of this imposter, totally paralyzed.

LIZ
Dreaming about what?

TOM
Are we really gonna have a baby?

Everything Liz is holding inside begins to crumble. The
tears come fast. Her world spinning. She fakes a smile and
clutches her right hand into a fist; nervously running her
fingers against the skin of her palm until we JUMP TO:
Genres: ["Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Red reveals the existence of his Blacklist of criminals to the FBI and negotiates a deal to only speak with Elizabeth Keen. Meanwhile, Liz discovers a hidden duffle bag containing money, passports, and a gun that proves her husband is an imposter. She confronts him in the hospital, revealing her betrayal.
Strengths
  • Tension-filled dialogue between Red and the FBI agents
  • Revelation of Red's Blacklist and the existence of more dangerous criminals
  • Liz's emotional turmoil as she confronts her husband's lies
Weaknesses
  • Some plot points could be confusing for viewers who haven't watched previous episodes
Critique Overall, this scene does a good job of moving the plot forward and raising tension. However, there are a few areas that could be improved upon. First, the dialogue between Red and the FBI agents feels a bit forced and unnatural. It's clear that they are trying to establish Red's character as a cunning mastermind, but the dialogue could use some polishing to feel more organic. Additionally, the scene where Liz discovers Tom's hidden bag of cash and passports feels a bit rushed and underdeveloped. More time could be spent building up the sense of betrayal and shock that Liz must feel upon realizing that her husband is not who he seemed to be.

Overall, this scene is effective in advancing the plot and heightening tension, but there are opportunities to improve the dialogue and develop the characters more fully.
Suggestions As a screenwriting expert, here are my suggestions to improve the scene:

1. The dialogue needs to be more concise and impactful. Instead of long speeches, the characters should speak in shorter, sharper lines that get to the point and increase the tension in the scene.

2. The characters’ emotions need to be more heightened. While there is anger and frustration in the scene, it needs to be emphasized further. For example, Ressler could physically slam his fist on the table, or Liz could speak through gritted teeth.

3. The stakes need to be made clearer. While the characters are discussing Red’s surrender and the Blacklist, it needs to be more explicit what the consequences are if they don’t work together. For example, Cooper could say that if they don’t get the information they need from Red, millions of lives could be at risk.

4. The pacing needs to be tightened. There are moments where the scene drags, such as Cooper closing his notebook and the agents gathering their things. To make the scene more engaging, these moments could be cut or reworked to increase the tension.

5. The visuals could be more engaging. While the scene is set in a conference room, it could benefit from more interesting camera angles or shots of the characters’ reactions. This could help make the scene more visually dynamic and engaging for the audience.



Scene 20 -  The Truth Revealed
  • Overall: 8.0
  • Concept: 7
  • Plot: 9
  • Characters: 8
  • Dialogue: 8
INT. BLACK-SITE PRISON - UNKNOWN

ARMED SOLDIERS escort Liz through a series of security check
points. Into a the bowels of an anonymous ship. She carries
herself with a sense of purpose. A fire in her belly. Liz
is shown through a doorway and into...

A PRISON CELL.

Red steps forward. Out of the shadows. That soft smile.

RED
You’ve discovered something about
your beloved husband, haven’t you
Lizzy?

She SNAPS back --

LIZ
My name’s Liz, not Lizzy. To you
I’m Agent Keen. Now, let me tell
you how this is gonna work: I ask
the questions. You answer. Screw
with me and I walk. Starting right
now, there are no more games, no
more secrets...
(fearless)
I want the truth.

RED
I’m here to help you find it.

She stares at Red. Into the unknown.

LIZ
Tell me about this Blacklist.

CUT TO BLACK.

THE END
Genres: ["Drama","Thriller"]

Summary Liz confronts Red in a prison cell, demanding answers about her husband's true identity and the Blacklist.
Strengths "The tension and conflict between Liz and Red create a palpable atmosphere. The dialogue is sharp and keeps the viewer engaged."
Weaknesses "The scene is mostly exposition-heavy dialogue, which may feel slow to some viewers. The setting is also limited to a single prison cell."
Critique
Suggestions Overall, the scene is dialog-heavy and could benefit from some additional visual elements to break up the back and forth conversation. Here are some suggestions:

-Consider adding some description of the prison cell itself to help set the tone and mood for the scene. What are the conditions like? What does Liz see when she enters?
-Instead of simply having Liz and Red standing and talking, consider some physical action/reaction that can break up the tension. For example, Liz could start pacing or circling the room, or Red could be fidgeting with an object on the table.
-Consider sprinkling in some more backstory or exposition to give the audience some more context for the scene. Why is Liz so determined to get the truth, and what exactly is Red's role in all of this?
-Think about the pacing of the scene. It's the last scene of the movie, so it needs to be impactful and leave the audience wanting more. Could there be a moment of heightened tension or surprise that will leave the audience wondering about what happens next?