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I am working on a script for a sci-fi horror movie. It's inspired by "The Tempest" and "Forbidden Planet" and is meant as a very unofficial sequel to that film.
A small spacecraft on a "three hour tour" type of flight (basically a bunch of people taking the bus) crashes on an exotic alien planet. When they arrive, almost as soon as their barge manages to reach a coastline, they begin disappearing one by one. The ad hoc leadership that develops forms a buddy system so no one is left alone, but one of the survivors, a man named Edwards, seems to have advanced knowledge of the planet and its properties, including the mysterious underground dwelling monsters that are stalking the survivors. It is discovered and revealed that he was not on the transport. He crashed on the planet years ago, and is no longer completely human. He claims that the planet's ecology evolved as a gestalt, and that the gestalt absorbs whatever it can. He calls the gestalt the "Caliban" (both singular and plural) and warns that if the people don't find a way off this planet, the Caliban will absorb them. Edwards claims that he only survived and was partially, incompletely absorbed, which gives him some power over the planet's ecology, but the planet/the Caliban recognizes him as a foreigner now and is "at war" with him. This turns out not to be quite true. Edward was absorbed a long time ago and allowed to think he'd gotten away. He is slowly turning into one of the Caliban, a formless black tentacled sandworm-like creature that "swims" underground and only comes up to prey on the unsuspecting, unabsorbed. The planet's gestalt is actually using him to lead the survivors to a point of absorption, too.
I'm going for "The Tempest" meets "Alien." And yes, Edwards is named for "Edward Morbius" from "Forbidden Planet."
So... feedback? Ideas? Roads to take?
edited 2nd Dec '13 2:32:36 PM by fulltimeD
One of the crew members has a daughter who falls in love with another crew member and they try to prevent the passengers (and crew) from getting absorbed?
edited 2nd Dec '13 7:42:38 PM by MorwenEdhelwen
^ Yeah, that would work well, except there's only one surviving crew member (and this is a non military crew, basically the crew of an airliner in space, so it's not like it was a very large crew). He happened to be in the passenger module when the ship exploded; apparently he was trying to disconnect the two modules from each other so both would survive the reactor's explosion, but he failed and the reactor exploded, damaging both modules. Every one in the command module (all the rest of the crew) were killed, and a number of people in the passenger died, too, but about 50 passengers and this one crew member survived. This guy's the protagonist so a romantic angle would work well; I just have to make sure I show that I show how his feelings chafe against his responsibilities. I hadn't thought of the "daughter" character but I really should write one if I want to parallel "The Tempest" and "Forbidden Planet." But she would need to be Edwards' daughter, not the daughter of one of the survivors.
Maybe she's not actually human, she's part of the Caliban, but takes the form of Edwards' beautiful daughter. Maybe she looks like Edwards' REAL daughter, who was absorbed years ago when they first crash landed!
WHOAH! THANK YOU FOR THAT IDEA!!!!!
edited 3rd Dec '13 6:18:30 AM by fulltimeD
It's perfect. It gives the Caliban a face and form other than slimy black underground critters.
The planet has a crust that is its shell, its exoskeleton, and it has "pores" (holes, caves, points of access) where the Caliban, which is like the actual body under the shell,and is really one big underground black sea that can form pseudopods, which the survivors initially believe are multiple sandworm-ish creatures. These are really more like the planet's fingers. It's how the planet "scratches itself."
Beneath the Caliban are various other "functionally differentiated strata." All the plants and animals in the ecosphere of the planet play various roles in the planet's "metabolism," but it is the Caliban that absorb people.
edited 4th Dec '13 12:36:01 PM by fulltimeD
I think weird eyes should be the first sign of the beginnings of Absorption but I don't want to make them all-white or all-black. Maybe if they started tearing blood, and then the blood turns black and viscuous.
Or just blood-shot, then the next step is them turning yellow.
Are people getting what I'm trying to do visually and thematically with the concept of "The Caliban?" A "spirit of the land," hence its name. Although in this case the Land is a living planet that absorbs any raw materials deposited on its surface, for example, it would absorb a meteorite rich in heavy mnetals or radioactives in addition to humans.
edited 7th Dec '13 5:25:03 AM by fulltimeD
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