Private Project


Well-off high schoolers, Marcus and Riley, test out a new app called “hourglass” which gives them the ability to pay to time travel. Riley pressures Marcus to utilize “hourglass” in pursual of excitement. Marcus succumbs as his own insecurities surface through conversation about his ex-girlfriend, Erica. Wanting to prove that he can let loose and take risks, Marcus joins his friend in petty thrills, recognizing his invincibility as they time travel to escape consequence.

Still caught up on Erica, Marcus decides to sneak into her house. His intentions are unclear. In her room he is infatuated with old memories, yet it seems as if she has moved on. There’s a new boy in her life: Trevor. He immediately runs to the car. He wants to go back to the night they broke up. As a result of Marcus’s obstinance, they travel back in time.

Marcus walks to Erica’s door with a newfound confidence. To his dismay, she will not take him back. He storms back to the car and is met with Riley’s pleas to return to the present. However, things take a turn Trevor is seen going to Erica’s house, exposing an affair. As Trevor begins his walk home, Marcus turns on the car. Marcus runs into Trevor at full speed, killing him.

The boys return to present-day. The true consequence of Marcus’s actions are solidified: a failure to get the girl and the decimation of Riley’s friendship.

  • Chadd Alciati
    Wilted (short)
  • Kevin Nikroo
    Mainland (short)
  • Luke Trester
    Humanity (short)
  • Connor Williams
  • Project Type:
    Short Script
  • Genres:
    Thriller, Sci-Fi
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
Writer Biography - Chadd Alciati

Chadd Alciati is a writer and director based in Los Angeles, California. Currently studying at the University of Southern California, he is set to graduate in 2022 with a degree in Cinema and Media Studies. His most recent short drama, Wilted, had a run at festivals in the United States and abroad, receiving a nomination for Best Cinematography and Best Drama at the All American High School Film Festival.

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Writer Statement

Ingested through screens of all shapes and sizes, we are constantly witnessing violence, both real and fictional. The crave to see gore from the safety of the theater or the living room and to inflict sadistic cruelty through computers and gaming consoles is what inspired hourglass. Yes, I have watched countless car chases and murderous rampages on the big screen, while also virtually taking part in my own. Therefore, this film is not as much of a critique but more of an exploration.

I came up with a concept that presented a pair of friends with the ability to do whatever they pleased without foreseeable consequences through the time-traveling app, “hourglass”. With seemingly no stakes, the boys are able to live out thrills without punishment like their own action movie or video game, abusing their privilege and exploiting the device. As power and one’s usage of it thematically forefronts the narrative, obsession and revenge become prominent through our protagonist Marcus’s twisted objective. As an audience, we will see him grow from a timid and restrained individual to someone so confident in his newfound potential, all for the girl of his dreams. His obsession is what drives his evolution and leads to his downfall, where is dealt the punishment for his actions.

I believe that hourglass will be exciting and enjoyable, the ultimate goal for the project. While allowing the viewers to go on a thrill ride with two teenage boys, I hope to also make them contemplate their own action, looking at their consumption of violence and lust through modern mediums. I also want them to consider their own morality, slightly doubting their answer when it comes to the question of “would I do the same thing?” Personally, I think everybody is capable of evil, and, if granted the power to get away with their wildest fantasies, they might just do the unthinkable.