When two siblings piece together the truth behind the ‘Here be dragons’ symbols on medieval maps, and learn of the possible existence of the last remaining dragon, powerful opposing forces converge in a see-sawing battle of wits, steel, meerkats, and witty repartee.
This sounds like fun!
I think there’s a fair amount of information that’s not needed here to understand what the story is about. There’s a lot of detail but not that much that helps the reader to visualise the story and that’s really important. The siblings “learn of the possible existence”. Learning something isn’t particularly visual and it’s only a possible existence. They need to find something that damn near proves it, at least enough to start their quest. Think of The Goonies – they find the treasure map and translate the text – yes they learn something, but the logline would be “when they find a treasure map and decipher the location of the loot”. It’s all visual, exciting, and gets the team involved. It’s not 100% confirmation but it’s enough to get them excited and starts them down the road to the treasure.
“piece together the truth” – how is this represented on screen? Visually, what’s happening?
“Powerful opposing forces” – what are these? Again, think visually. The reader has to either make assumptions or speculate as to what these are and that’s one of the last things you want a reader of your logline to do. If the assumptions or speculations are wrong, and based on them the reader chooses not to read your script, that would suck! Be more specific – is it a company? A group of dragon killers? A medieval wizard who banished all the dragons and is resurrected once the siblings put the puzzle together (in the inciting incident).
“see sawing battle of wits, steel, meerkats, and witty repartee.” – In a family film about rival forces trying to each find something first, personally, I think most of this is a given. Obviously the meerkats is the exception. I don’t need this information as this is what I’d expect – what I do need though is (as dpg pointed out) to know what the prize is? What’s the goal? What are the stakes? And again, think visually, make it a tangible goal that the reader can understand. Ideally, this is “to find the dragon and…” maybe save it from the opposing forces or gain control of the dragon to stop the bad guys using it for death and destruction.
Hope this helps… keep going with this! It sounds great!
Perhaps strengthen the inciting incident: “When they discover a strange map while touring an old English castle…”
Also, you say, powerful forces, but that is vague, what powerful forces? it would be helpful to be specific.
“When they discover a strange codex while touring an old English castle, two siblings begin following the trail of the dragon marker shown on the map within its pages, all while using their wits to outsmart a group of bubbling Knights Templar who wants the book for themselves.”
The logline sets up an interesting situation and discovery; now it needs to follow through and provide a (brief) description of what becomes their objective goal. What is the dramatic question raised by the discovery that the rest of the story will (eventually) answer?
>>>powerful opposing forces converge in a see-sawing battle
What will the winner of the battle achieve? -What is (the McGuffin?) everyone is fighting for? What’s at stake?
I agree with all said.
If I may add something unsaid, this would be a question about the duality of protagonism. Why do we have two protagonists? If this is a buddy- (or sibling-) movie, I need to get a hint of the chemistry or tension between the two protagonists. Just a hint.
Otherwise, why not one? Or a whole group? (Like Goonies.)