Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Miami Vice Draft Screenplay

Happy New Year everyone! A new year, a new Michael Mann film....can't wait!

I recently had a look at the Miami Vice movie screenplay, Michael Mann's first draft. Oh goodness, from first draft to final film it is obvious it has been hacked to pieces. It's worth looking at if you are interested in the cross over from story and character development to practical screen writing. The refining of script, as if refined by fire, is very apparent. In the first draft one senses a similar character style development from the 80's series, but this is obviously mostly cut out for the final draft, which feels more sombre. The earlier draft seems to see the film set for one of Mann's epic length, 3 hour adventures. I have never understood why critics and film company owners complain of lengthy movies - I much prefer getting a fix for 3 hours rather than just 2, or even a measly 1,5 hours. In truth, perhaps Mann realised that his character development of Crockett and Tubbs just could never have the depth, to bear any relevance to the main plot line of this movie, as limited within the framework of the screenplay already written. For this reason, it appears that a shorter script would be tighter and more appropriate.

Those are my initial reflections - if you have any, I would be interested to hear them. Those most critical of Miami Vice the movie, have said that the dialogue was incomprehensible most of the time. I personally disagree, although I did find myself straining to hear what they said occasionally. But critics also meant that the screenplay was weak. I admit to saying Miami Vice didn't in my view achieve the same alchemy as Heat or The Insider and wasn't near Mann's best work in terms of emotional engagement with the viewer, but there were some special moments and I have enjoyed watching it over and over.

Well, if you would like to see this first Miami Vice Screenplay draft then click here!

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