"Bygone Heroes" by James McConnell

Logline: Commander Ty Stallone and retired operatives Johnny Van Damme, Steven Seagull and Chuck Morris must unite one last time to stop disgraced former operative Rolf Lungren from destroying the world's last chance for peace.

Genre: Action - Comedy

Cast Size: 10+

Production Status: Available (Please contact the author to negotiate the rights)

Contest: Feature ~ Round 1 of 3: Logline (Jan. 2009)

Contest Scores
PoorFairGoodVery GoodExcellent
7%41%31%14%6%

Comments Made During the Contest

Adam Grage (Level 4)

When I saw the first name I cringed because it made me think of Stallone but once I read the rest I saw the premise. I think this has promise but I think it could be beefed up more.

If you are going at satire you could exploit the outlandish plots of the movies they were in also. Just a suggestion though as this seems good right now.

Alex Hollister (Level 4)

Not hiting my funny bone. Substituing famous action hero names for plot isn't the best idea. Without those names this logline says nothing and suggests a lack of story. Apart from the names it's all too vague. The apt title scrapes it a fair.

Ali Barr (Level 4)

This could be fun. I would work on the title a little bit to bring a more powerful feeling of a comeback rather than the word Bygone because it gives a sense of being over before it started. There may be a cliche or play on words that discusses coming out of retirement or one last run at glory. I think of words like Encore, Reprise, Out of Retirement, Glory Days...Again, or something. I don't know, something less melancholy because the story sounds lighthearted and fun.

"A disgraced former operative" is a little clumsy on the tongue. I would search for a cleaner sounding description.

Ammar Salmi (Level 5)

Sounds like an interesting comedy. But would a comedy with such famous names be produced? This comedy seems to have potentials but it's the possibilities that producers won't like such a risk is what I am worried about.

Audrey Webb (Level 5)

Well, I love action movies, so that aspect of the logline appeals to me. But it's too jokey for my tastes. I'll stay middle of the road on this one and give it a "good". I think the biggest problem I have with it is that they "must unite one last time". To my knowledge, they've never all been together...the heroes with the real names, that is. I don't know why they would all have to come together except for one big joke-fest.

Bill Davis (Level 3)

Still a mouth full... maybe too many names - slows you down trying to read it all. but still, very good. Maybe even take out the word 'disgraced' that tells us why he's doing it, leaves nothing to the imagination. I don't need to ask you for anything more or get in contact with you. You've got to leave me with wanting more.

Bill Delehanty (Level 4)

This sounds like one of those fan-made dream movies, which could be cool. But it's also lazy writing when you depend on real world and other successes for you own idea. Also, changing the names by a letter isn't the best way to show creativity.

Brian Wind (Level 5)

The title is okay, but not a great attention grabber. The logline is constructed well with all the necessary elements in place. The story sounds like it could be pretty entertaining, but also could run the risk of being riddled with cliche after cliche and those kind of gags can get old in a hurry. I do get the sense that you could probably fill a feature length script based on this concept. The genre is clearly defined as action comedy.

Calvin Peat (Level 4)

This is an amusing concept, but the joke names don't work as well, at least not in the logline. The title is good, though.

This sounds like a comedy version of the upcoming film The Expendables (which should be good, in a more serious way).

This has the potential to be a funny spoof of action movies, and possibly also to have some great action sequences itself, like Tropic Thunder or Hot Fuzz. Exactly how funny it'll be depends on the quality of the writing, which isn't conclusively proven by the logline, although it does establish the basic storyline.

Some subplots could have been included in the logline, in order to assure the reader that there'll be enough funny material. Also, something of what the characters will be like could have been indicated: for example, whether they're simply comedy versions of their almost-namesakes, or if they're distinct characters who happen to have names which reference past action heroes. Moreover, the interactions between different members of the team could be funny, and so this could also have been mentioned.

Caroline Coxon (Mod Emeritus)

The title was fine.

I don't know about the logline. It seemed amusing with the first name, then it got less funny as the logline progressed. It seemed to end up like The A-Team or, I don't know, The Magnificent Seven (Four?)

I really do get the references to all these guys but...it's an enigma how you could make this into a logline that would entice me to be interested in the film. It came across as an exercise in 'I'm smart at making up spoof names based on action hero actors'

Harsh? Maybe. But honest. It's not that I don't like the genre, it's just the way it was put across.

Charlie Hebert (Mod Emeritus)

This is really cute, but I don't see how it's going to work.
Are you planning on finding actual actors who look like the real actors or do they just have similar names and that's supposed to be funny? I mean it could be, but from this I really can't tell. Need to know what direction this is headed in.

Otherwise, sounds like a hoot.

Good luck.

Chris Keaton (Level 5)

Is this about the characters they played or their real persons? What happens if they fail? Why, since Rolf, is a normal guy would he be some kind of bad guy? Sorry this doesn't make much sense to me.

Chris Messineo (Founder)

I think this title is good, but given the logline, I wish it was more comedic.

It seems like this will be a larger than life spoof. I wish the actual logline was funnier and contained some of the sense of humor I would expect to find in the script. Also, I know who the people are, but I really have no idea what the story is about.

Chris Villafano (Level 3)

Sounds like a parody movie. I am torn because most parodies aren't that good.But I do have a guilty pleasure for a few.

Damien Deefholts (Level 3)

the premise is not a bad one.

the names could almost be funny.

too short...not enough meat in the logline. take out the names and you have more room to announce the premise better.

Dan Lennox (Level 4)

Interesting idea. Sounds like this will be more of a parody type story than anything else. The logline just about says it all for me, short and to the point. Not much else to say on this one.

David Birch (Level 5)

very unique...some things to like here...action, drama, comedy...tall order...good luck...

David Jagernauth (Level 2)

The logline suggests an action movie spoof -- the character names do a good job with that. But I want more of the funny. Are they overweight? Old? One in a wheelchair? What is funny or clever about this other than the names?

Right now the logline is too generic. How is the bad guy threatening the world? What must our heroes do to save it?

The title is good. I wouldn't change it.

Elisabeth Dubois (Level 4)

great transformation of the actors names; hoping they play their own characters.
Sounds like you have a great combination for a superb comedy, lol
Good luck!

Erich VonHeeder (Level 4)

You took a risk here...you put all your eggs in this basket:

PEOPLE WILL FIND CARICATURES OF OLD ACTION HEROES TO BE FUNNY.

The problem is, I think you stacked the cards against yourself. By not including any other significant story elements, you are banking 100% on the hilarity of those caricatures.

For me, personally, it didn't work. Just didn't hit my funny bone.
But that's not to say it won't work for others. Luckily, this contest will give you a pretty clear answer, I believe.

Ethelyn Boddy (Level 4)

This is guy stuff. I reserve the right to make "no comment."

Faith Friese Nelson (Level 5)

I can see the story in my mind's eye. The title is appropriate for the premise!

Garrett Box (Level 4)

This sounds totally over the top, and I’m sure that you’ll probably get in trouble for the character names, but I suppose that’s the point. Just remember, if you’re going for over the top, then go all out.

Hector Gutierrez (Level 3)

Nice title, I liked it. Interesting concept having "bygone heroes" in a new mission. Reminds me a little of the "Space Cowboys" concept.

However I would like to know more details about Rolf Lungren's plan and why Ty, Johnny, Steven and Chuck must be the ones to save the day instead of younger heroes or an elite squad like Delta Force, SEALS or Black Ops.

Jane Beckwith (Level 4)

The title is pretty good. The logline drives along and I have a clear picture of the kind of parody/spoof in store. Good work.

Jay Arbry (Level 3)

Old, decrepit, uninteresting heroes, you mean. Okay, just making puns on the names of defunct eighties action movie stars does not a script make. This is not a movie idea; it's an SNL sketch. Pass.

Jeannie Sconzo (Level 5)

I enjoyed the spin you put on the stars names.

Jeff Ferry (Level 5)

The title is apt and pretty good. Now I like a spoof or satire movie as much as the next person, but this seems like one of those cheesy epic/date movie scripts. You could make the characters sterotypical without resorting to just naming them after people.

Jeffrey Slocum (Level 4)

Need to use celebrity names? Definite lack of originality and creative style. Reminds me of old SNL skit, the movie announcement, "Die, forigner, die!", starring Shwarzenegger, Norris and Stallone. Could be really good or terrible. Previews should not show whole movie.

Joel Davis (Level 5)

This sounds like "The Last Action Hero(es)". Is it supposed to be a spoof like "Scary Movie" or "Meet the Spartans"? That could be interesting if you're a fan of action movies, and they are ripe for spoofdom.

But really, the flaw here is that it doesn't tell us enough about the movie. If you take away the clever puns of the names, you're left with "A band of retired operatives unite to stop a former operative from destroying the world's last chance for peace." But what does "destroying the world's last chance for peace mean"? It sounds bad but isn't specific enough.. i.e. "blowing up the U.N." or "smuggling a nuke into Los Angeles" or something tangible.

Without those specifics, there's really nothing to grab me.

Also, I'm reviewing all these with the assumption that it's a perfect world and any concept has an equal chance of showing up at my theater.. so this didn't affect my scoring but... there's zero chance that a script with four of the world's biggest action heros making fun of themselves will get made. You absolutely must change the names if you want this concept to work.

John Brooke (Level 5)

I can’t wait to see that crowd of pseudo action stars packed into one sure to be explosive bad assed movie. This is going to be a rock-em sock-em mother of all action flicks send-up parodies.

Wonderful title suggest these tough super heroic guys have not faded away but have changed their names and returned to do battle in the present so that we can enjoy a future.

Jon Hill (Level 4)

Normally I would criticize loglines which contains character's names but in this case the names make the logline. It sounds a very promising parody, I can't wait to see what you do next with this.

Kirk White (Level 5)

I"m getting that this is a parody of Action movies ala Scream? If I'm wrong....you should rework it.

Kyle Patrick Johnson (Level 5)

Title: Wonderful. Immediately intriguing. It does make it sound as if the cast will all be in their 60s, though, which isn't an immediate seller of movies. People like to watch youth, for whatever reason.

Story: Yup. They're all in their 60s. I don't know if that'll fly in the real world. You need to tell us why Rolf is such a formidable antagonist. How will he destroy the world's peace? Give me a clue.

Craft: It seems like you rely too much on character names to enthrall us. Personally, I don't care about names. I haven't met them yet. Delete all those names, and then look at your logline again, and I think you'll see how it needs to be fleshed out.

Laureen Muller (Level 4)

Cute title. I am guessing this is a comedy, cute play on names. Would capture the target of the teenage, young 20's male, or maybe even kids (10+). Just seems like a thrown together logline without much thought to the storyline. One last time implies that this would be a sequel or that these would be familiar names from prior stories. Would have to do a lot of character building to get to the story line. Or maybe it is a live action interpretation of "The Incredibles" whereas the characters are friends instead of family.

Lewayne White (Level 4)

This sounds like a total Mad Magazine action hero spoof. I'd totally love to see this.

Margaret Ricke (Level 5)

Title: This movie is going to be about old warriors of some sort - military, sports, etc. - and they're probably making a comeback or rescuing someone younger. After reading the logline - I see how your title fits the story. The title is okay.

Story: I recently watched "Tropic Thunder" and that's looming large in my mind as I read your logline. I think you need to put in something that makes your story leap out on its own. I don't think that relying on the names of the characters to tell the reader what your story is going to be about is working here. Fair story.

Craft: Your spelling and punctuation are good. Again, I think you could replace the names of the characters with something more general (Led by their old commander, a group of retired...). Okay craft.

Fairly good work.

Marla Brecheen (Level 4)

Interesting title since the names you mentioned in the logline are all action hero actors who haven't done a movie in quite awhile. Nice. By placing their names in the logline is a bit distracting and I wonder if you'll be able to get them to play the characters if you were to get this script made. Leave the names out.

Marnie Mitchell Lister (Level 5)

I like the title. The logline is okay. Not a movie that would appeal to my taste in any way but there is definately a target audience for stuff like this. Good job.

Martin Jensen (Level 5)

This seems a bit like a one-joke idea. There's nothing wrong with that, as long as the joke's funny enough and you are free to deviate from it on occasion (e.g. Team America: World Police). But inventiveness is lacking here, where you rely on small alterations of names as jokes.

This doesn't give any idea of the story, characters, or why I should be excited by this or think it's funny.

Matt Johnson (Level 3)

I like the name, but the story seems too much of a Scary Movie spoof. I'm sure that this would lead to comedy gold but I really don't want to see a movie like this when there are plenty others that spoof the same genre.

Another thing, I've been told to never name character names in a logline.

Other than that, the log line ain't all that bad.

Matthew Belanger (Level 3)

I get the punny names, but is this a comedy or war drama? Without the names, it sounds like a typical war movie, but with them, it sounds like a comedy. This is kind of confusing. I'd need more information to know what to look forward to here.

Micah Ricke (Level 4)

I don't know, the use of the psuedo hollywood star names comes across as a copout. If those were to be stripped out, or just turned to ordinary names like Bob and Jim, would there be anything there? Perhaps, but as it is the names detract. You need to sell the story. It just doesn't work for me.

MJ Hermanny (Level 5)

ROFL! Hysterical, I laughed out and that's just from your logline. How come you haven't got Harold Schwarzenmayor in there?

This would be an absolute world wide smash hit if those guys would deign to send themselves up, it would be awesome!

Can't wait to see who wrote this.

Brilliantly crafted logline and fabulously chucklicious.

Nathan Goldman (Level 4)

This is very interesting. I assume it is a comedic send-up of the action genre. If so, I like it. The title is appropriate. I assume that the action will be tongue in cheek. It'll be interesting to read.

Neal Barringer (Level 0)

My score is based on clearly stating each of these major story elements (Get a Yes in each to earn an Excellent):

Protagonist: Yes
Goal: Yes
Antagonistic force: Yes
Stakes: Yes
Accurate Portrait: Yes

my personal opinions about your log line:
I hope this is satire. I think you should spend your energies on creating something original rather than riding the coat tails of mega-stars.

Nick Miranda (Level 4)

Unless you are opting for a slapstick comedy along the lines of "Tropic Thunder" I would change the names. Heck, even if you're going along those lines, still, change the names. Celebrities love their names and don't take kindly to being lampooned; and production companies are less likely to take a chance on a story that could damage their relation with big name talent.

As for the story, I would have to guess that there are some hilarious situations that transpire between the action heroes. But since you don't give any information as to what those might be, or even if they do occur, I can't be sure. This also sounds too much like a campy, predictable tale where the friends have a falling out and then come back together in the begining of the third act when they realize that there are more important things at stake than themselves.

Nicky Muddle (Level 3)

I assume you've got a comedy here and this is certainly a ripe area for parody. Unfortunately all you have really demonstrated to me so far is an ability to change one name each for a list of action movie "stars". Maybe a little more detail will clarify exactly what you are going to do with them. Don't get me wrong, this could be hilarious - its just you haven't given me enough to know for sure.

Oliver Webb (Level 3)

Take out the names!!! There "titles" are more important, plus it will save you words to add in the situation. What is the former operative's plot in order to destory the world's last chance for peace? Include it in the logline. That can not be a secret, or something i have to read the script to find out. A logline tells me what the story is about, it's not a teaser.

Paul Jaworsky (Level 4)

I see this as Tropic Thunder II. That is , if you're planning a comedy. Not sure if you have Action Comedy in mind, but that's what I get from it. The premise is a bit unusual, but I guess you can make it work. Good luck.

Paul Williams (Level 5)

I'd like to think I have a good sense of humor, but the spoof genre isn't always my favorite. But, some are very successful and I do acknowledge that their is a fan base for it.

Title: Good, fit for this genre and story.

Pete Barry (Level 5)

This is tightly written, with clearly delineated heroes, villain, conflict and objectives. You're obviously going for parody, and the plot already resembles dozens of choice target movies.

I have to say, the names make me groan, not laugh. It makes me afraid that the bar for this script has been set low, and it will strive ever lower. I would certainly give it a look, but it would have to make me laugh hard and fast.

But, in the end, I would probably give it that chance, so it does what it's written to do: get your foot in the door.

Peter Tolosa (Level 4)

This is awful. I have to keep typing to leave you a longer comment so you can chop this for abusing the system but I really mean it this is awful.

Rich Keel (Level 4)

HA! Wow this could be a really great spinoff!!!! I would pay to see it! The idea itself has me laughing and the title is great! Your logline is right to the point and would pull a lot of us mid 30s guys in. Very Good!

Rick Hansberry (Moderator)

When the logline is comprised of name jokes, I can't see the script going very far. I'm glad you had fun with the box office heros of the genre but this gag would grow unfunny quickly. Still, the logline was worth a chuckle. Justin Time

Rob Gross (Level 4)

Plenty of opportunity for exagerrated characterizations here. Gotta be a animated flick for best impact!

I would change the title to reflect to tie in their movies. That's not to say the title isn't good. It is.

This is clearly a comedy and one that people could relate to. Everyone knows these guys and I would definitely want to read the first 10 pages.

I have to give this a very good.

Ron Hooker (Level 4)

I'm laughing already. The characters, and more specifically their interactions with one another, are the defining points in regards to what will make or break this unique approach to the "save the world" concept, but I think you can pull it off. I'm curious to find out what happens.

Sally Meyer (Moderator)

I like the idea of the story. I'm not sure if this would work, by changing the names of the real live actors thouch. The title fits the logline well. I think it would be a fun idea. I just don't know if it would be 'allowed'.

Sarah Daly (Level 2)

I can see this as a great skit but just don't know if it's got enough depth to sustain a whole movie. I like the spoof vibe and certainly this is a popular genre and there is the cult appeal of these old cheesy stars. Ultimately though, would you expect these actors to get on board for this? Because the success of this movie depends on their participation. Or would you have actors playing them? Because I think the gag would wear thin after a while. I think maybe it would be better to write a spoof movie in the genre of these big cheesy action thrillers without actually naming the characters as such. Very funny idea though - with a little tweaking it could work. The title is perfect!

Scott Merrow (Level 5)

Aside from the "clever" names, there's really no substance to this logline. A bunch of "retired operatives" uniting to stop a "former operative" from destroying the world's last chance for peace doesn't really tell us anything useful about the movie. You might as well have written, "This is an action movie." We need more information.

Stephen Brown (Level 5)

So a spoof action film then, yeah? Hasn't that already been done with 'Hot Shots'?

I think the script would be very funny and, to be honest, I'd like to read it. I'm not sure how you'd fair legally with using such blatant alias' and basing your entire logline on that isn't quite enough. I want more of the story.

Why no Arnie too? haha.

Steve Dexheimer (Level 4)

The title's not too bad, but I don't really get the concept. Are these supposed to be the real actor's playing themselves, or just caricatures of those actors? "They must unite one last time" - did they ever unite in the first place? That leads me to believe these are just stereotypes with funny names, and you'll build their history within the script.
The logline gives us the obstacle - Rolf will destroy the world's last chance for peace - but it doesn't say how he'll threaten it, or what kind of adventure we might expect the heroes to go on to stop him.

Sylvia Dahlby (Level 5)

Very punny. You forgot James Band.

Tim Aucoin (Level 4)

Sounds goofy. I don't get what you're trying to accomplish with using alternate names for older action stars.

Tim Westland (Moderator)

Title: Fair.

Logline: Fair.

I get the joke, but it's not enough. You needed more. How is Rolf endangering Peace? How are they going to stop him? What are the time stakes?

Too much is missing and your logline relies on humor instead of content.

Bottom line: Fair

Tom Shipley (Level 4)

I'm going to look at this through the eyes of a studio exec. As it's written now, I'm not sure if you're angling to actually cast all the names you parody in the script. If so -- or even not if so -- I'd describe the characters these guys played rather than parody their names so that you get the impression that it's supposed to bring all these characters from '80s actions movies together, but don't give any indication about possible casting. Not that you necessarily are here, but for some reason the parodied names turn me off somewhat.

It's an interesting idea. Though, I'm not sure I'd use the "unite one last time" line since I don't think these guys have worked together before?

Vicki Davis (Level 3)

Is this supposed to be a farce - comedy? I get the joke of using the actor's names from action stars but your log line doesn;t really tell us anything. Is this an action feel meant to be taken seriously? or just a joke. And what is the obstacle these hero's will overcome.

Wes Worthing (Level 5)

Makes me think of "Starship Troopers", and I mean that in a good way. Maybe a more current comparison would be "Tropic Thunder". I would take out the second "last" to avoid repetitiveness. I like the title.

William Bienes (Mod Emeritus)

I would not have any interest in seeing this film. It doesn't resonate with me at all. I understand what you are doing with the spoof and all, but I just don't find it funny.

William D. Prystauk (Level 5)

Sounds like a cute, action-comedy parody. How is this better, different and more original than the "Scary Movie", "Date Movie" and "Epic Movie" franchise, which hasn't faired too well after the original "Scary Movie"?


Comments Made After the Contest

Rob Gross (Level 4) ~ 3/1/2009 12:37 AM

Dude, I thought this was pretty good... I would definitely give this a read.


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