Next Stop, Salvation by Warren Duncan | Script Revolution

Next Stop, Salvation

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8pp

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A supply run turns deadly for a group of commuters when they encounter a monstrous storm.

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Next Stop, Salvation
A supply run turns deadly for a group of commuters when they encounter a monstrous storm.

The key to persuasive world building is to start with a snapshot: a pinhole view into a slither of a different world. This minute morsel of another existence offers a taste of something much larger and alluring. It leaves the audience or reader yearning to learn more. See more. Experience more. Which is why Warren Duncan’s Next Stop, Salvation short is compelling to its core.

Starting with the opening description, you’re immediately immersed in a future world, bereft of life and hope. The very definition of a nightmarish, dystopian landscape:                 

A gas mask sits propped on top of (Mac’s) head, ready for immediate use.

He stares vacantly out over an arid wasteland. Red dirt covers everything for as far as the eye can see.

It’s as if even the light itself is tinted red.

The aptly named Mac drives a rickety ‘heavily fortified’ school bus through a vermillion-hued city, characterized by dust and destruction. His task appears to be the pick-up of a few solitary humans to bring them back ‘home’. Wherever home is.

The first passenger he picks up is Linden: a woman in her 30s who’s been scavenging for supplies. It also becomes clear through their initial taut exchange that Mac and Linden are romantically entwined.

She flings her arms around him, pulls him in tight.

MAC
I missed you.

LINDEN
Me too.

MAC
How’s it go?

Linden releases him, removes the backpack, and opens it.

It’s filled to the brim with medical supplies.

LINDEN
Prosperous day, indeed.

Following his brief reunion with Linden, Mac picks up the twins, Cody and Kane, in their mid-20s. Both weighed down by items they’ve foraged and armed with rifles. All three passengers are in equal parts exhausted, relieved and fearful.

When a frenzied ‘operator’ sends a distorted transmission to Mac via his CB, warning of an impending storm, we witness the true extent of dread this unseen evil entity elicits from the human survivors.

OPERATOR (V.O.)
Mac - - massive – your way –

He lifts the receiver.

Linden, Cody, and Kane all lean forward to listen in.

MAC
Say again, not received.

OPERATOR (V.O.)
The storm’s coming! They’re coming!

Mac throws the receiver down.

LINDEN
Mac? What storm?

MAC
I didn’t want to worry you. It’s ok, I’ve got this.

Kane stands up.

KANE
You’ve got this? They’re fucking coming for us, we’re screwed.

What follows the storm is a nightmarish horror, one that’s presumably responsible for the devastated world in which they now live. Or, we should say… survive?

Their only hope is to make it through this storm to reach salvation. But at what cost?!?

Warren Duncan’s imaginative short will leave you at the edge of your seat wanting to both read more and hide behind a pillow simultaneously.

It’s the perfect proof-of-concept story for directors and producers looking to stretch their skills in VFX and world building production design. Likewise, if you’re looking for a story that emulates the vision and style of such greats as John Carpenter and George Miller, this script might just be your Salvation, too!

Review by Jeremy Storey
Submitted: August 26, 2018
Last Updated: August 26, 2018
Times Downloaded: 16
Last Downloaded: August 19, 2019

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The Writer: Warren Duncan

I am an aspiring screenwriter from Australia. I have had multiple shorts produced and currently have several on option. I typically enjoy writing horror, thriller, and drama scripts. Please feel free to contact me at Warren_Duncan@hotmail.com or check out my website using the link below. Thanks for taking a look. Go to bio

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