ACTION ADVENTURE APOCALYPTIC CRIME DETECTIVE DRAMA EPIC FANTASY POLITICAL SCI-FI SUSPENSE/THRILLER
Well-known online government conspiracy theorist becomes a threat, gets set-up on false charges, is arrested, convicted and incarcerated in the Prison Pyramid, the largest building ever created, the home to 2 million convicts. Axel Storm becomes the pawn of prison czar Dr. Vladimir Zordic...
...his assignment allows him the run of the prison and he discovers that convicts are being re-educated to work upon release for Quackenbush, the world’s largest private security firm bent on taking over the world. Storm’s life in peril, he must find a way to escape....
but no one has ever escaped from the Pyramid. Storm must defeat automated robots and a monstrous guard, fool sophisticated electronic surveillance, find his way through a thunderstorm to a crystalized cavern, only to be apprehended by government men and escape again.
Based on a True Story
Plot - Premise
Overcoming Monster/Villain,Internal Journey/Rebirth,Quest,Rebellion Against 'The One',Voyage and Return
Plot - Other Elements
Happy Ending,Meaningful Message,Philosophical Questions
Mature Audience Themes
Extreme Violence,Nudity, Language/Profanity
Main Character Details
Name: Axel Storm
Key Traits: Adventurous,Aspiring,Badass,Aggressive,Charming,Clumsy,Complex,Confident,Crazy,Decisive,Desperate,Empathetic,Engaging,Faithful,Flexible,Gracious,Heroic,Masculine,Modest,Sexy,Outspoken,Skillful,Visionary,Educated,Honorable,Leader,Underdog,Secretive,Sophisticated,Strong Moral Code,Lone Wolf
Additional Character Details
Name: Dr. Vladimir Zordic
Key Traits: Aggressive,Charming,Complex,Confident,Crazy,Criminal,Masculine,Villainous,Narcisstic,Blunt,Power Hungry,Skillful,Engaging,Greedy,Educated,Leader,Manipulative
Additional Character Details
Name: Dr. Carmela Kleo
Key Traits: Charming,Complex,Empathetic,Engaging,Faithful,Obedient,Sexy,Skillful,Educated,Insecure,Sophisticated,Unapologetic,Romantic
Additional Character Details
Name: Darka Lane
Key Traits: Charming,Obedient,Sexy,Crazy,Desperate,Empathetic,Engaging,Romantic,Heartthrob
Prison Pyramid can be a blockbuster feature or mini-series. It is a complex story with many interesting characters and locations - most can be created in a sound stage using green screen. This story ticks many boxes of viewer interest: crime, prison, sci-fi, romance, sex, underdog, man against the machine, etc. Strong male heroic protagonist vs. formidable villain with three strong female co-stars. The setting is vast and imaginative: the largest building ever built by man, one mile high and a mile wide across its octagonal base, home to 2 million convicts… imagine what atrocities could occur in such a place. The story is told through the eyes of the protagonist who experiences the inner workings of this incredible structure firsthand and must find a way to defeat the system and gain his freedom. And, this is just the first book in a three book series. Control of the world is at stake… Can one man – an amalgam of James Bond, Jason Bourne and Batman – save the people of the world from domination and slavery? Come on man. This is a great unique story. People will love it. It has to make it on the screen! I am easy to work with and ready to go. Thank you for your kind attention.
ACTION, DRAMA, FANTASY
Axel Storm is set up and sent to the Prison Pyramid a vast network of two million convicted felons. There he must always navigate the lesser of two evils in a place where escape is not an option. When he finally does escape the clutches of Dr. Zordic, on of the prison heads, Storm is captured and put back to work in the prison by the government. In order to keep his family safe he returns to his old life in prison but surveils for a different boss with a bionic secret eye.
Authors Writing Style: GOOD
Franchise Potential: EXCELLENT
Accuracy of Book Profile
The short summary and the logline are interconnected in the profile. It might be better to separate the logline to summarize the entire plot in two sentences and then create a short summary which also explains the concept in its entirety but with more detail. This way the entire picture is known if only one section is read. The development pitch follows its function well, but it is unclear how Batman comes into play outside his self-sacrificing human relationships for the greater good. The narrative seems more science fiction and conspiracy based rather than the clear good versus evil of superhero action films so perhaps removing the Batman reference would better align the expectation of genre.
Draw of Story
The worldbuilding of the prison pyramid is intricate, creative, and intense. The twist that the government agents who rescued Storm in the dialogues also plan to use him in the same way to work for them in the prison was satisfying.
Because there is so much to explain about the prison and to set up the characters, there can be large blocks of exposition with little subtext which create unrealistic sounding info dumps and pacing fatigue. The women included in the narrative are largely also just romantic objects. Yes the women are smart and distinct and the prison is a men's prison, but there are powerful positions they could hold in the infrastructure of either the prison or in the prison espionage mission without being sexualized. The dialogue structure that give a trajectory to Storm's escape success take away some of the tension as to the mystery of whether he will survive or escape prison life.
Use of Special Effects
THE STORY RELIES HEAVILY ON SPECIAL EFFECTS
Primary Hook of Story
There are two hooks. The first is that Storm is put into prison under false pretenses but uses their instructions of respect and compliance to gain the doctors trust, access privileges and escape. However the second hook is when he does escape and is rescued by the secret agents he is sent back in to work in the prison.
This could have a large fan base as mass incarceration issues are a discussion topic in today's political climate but also should be talked about more. The action is easy to follow and the universe built is a complex network of intricate settings and dynamic character relationships.
Although dipped in the issues of criminal justice and prison for profit, the action treatment and science-fiction conspiracy laced drama make the film unlikely to gain awards in the more serious circuits. This may do well in popular awards shows however depending on how iconic Storm is as an action hero.
Similar Films/TV Series
PRISON BREAK, LOGAN, CON-AIR, THE FINAL CUT, 24, ALIAS, GOOD TIME,
What’s New About the Story
The concept of the pyramid and its inner workings are very fantastical and yet realistic at the same time. Less focus on the dialogue scenes as they create flashbacks rather than progress the story would better emulate a more authentic confusion as Storm must have felt before his escape.
Storm is upstanding and clever. He is opportunistic and yet loyal to those he trusts. Zordic is twisted and narcissistic and possibly sadistic.
Uniqueness of Story
The structure of the dialogue give away that Storm eventually escapes which strips the first part of the story of its narrative tension about Storm feeling trapped and hopeless. Although Storm works the system and loses his eye, having consequences for being a double spy to make him feel guilty could create further motivation and raise the stakes.
Film - Studio, Film - Streaming, Film - Indie
WORK IN PROGRESS
While the story has many positive points, it has room for improvement (see possible paths below). If you can't change the story at this point, my suggestion is using your notes as a guide to highlight the best aspects of it when taking the next steps, either putting a pitch page together, a treatment, or a presentation.
Tips for Improvement
Making the dialogue more nuanced and splitting up the exposition could help with the pacing of the worldbuilding. Structurally removing the dialogue chapters to increase the psychological tension could help authenticate Storm's world and thought process.