The Pickleball Killer I Written By Jim Carroll I Reviewed By Sucheta Halder

Title: “The Pickleball Killer” 

Written by: Jim Carroll

Genre: Thriller 

Intended Audience: Adults

The scene opens in a downtown alley in 1952. We see two homeless Asian women Miyako and Sunny, resting next to a dumpster. This same shabby women, in a later scene, are running as they shield a baby from the angry guards who are running towards them. It is an uncanny turn of events that fate (and flies) bring them to the Zhang Laboratories. Then on Miyako, the courageous one, convinces Sunny to look for some good stuff around the place. They witness a worker pushing a dead body into an incinerator, and upon opening a nearby cart, find a crying baby. Miyako takes the baby, and they try to escape. In the scuffle, Sunny is caught and captured by the guards while the courageous Miyako, who had hidden under the filth, survives. She names the baby Brigg Lee. Meanwhile, with the sudden arrival of the police, the experiment does not finish over Sunny. Mad Scientist Kido and his wife are killed in the gunfire while Sunny is still unconscious and getting swallowed up by the raging fire in the building.

The set-up:

Jim Carroll’s script, The Pickleball Killer, sets up the opening scene to instantly draw his audience into the piqued action. The mood is perfectly thrilling- a mad doctor, a homeless mother and a possibly superbaby; the stakes are instantly established. The audience is curious as to what happens to Miyako and Brigg Lee next and this sets up the groundwork for the exciting journey ahead. 

The Story Ahead:

The following scenes are cut to Brigg Lee, a 70-year old grey hair man being challenged by young players to play pickleball. He is called the “Pickleball Killer”. The whole plot is carefully strategized like a game of Pickleball. The players are introduced early in the story, but the rules of the game are explained soon after Brigg Lee meets Amy. From there onwards their relationship slowly develops as they learn to navigate daily life as a family. 

The story definitely has a lot of violent moments, but they are all necessary for the progression of the plot. Right from the meeting of Amy and Brigg Lee, the audience is showcased a wide range of gory details, although necessary cannot be watched by children under 18 years old. The representation of the cartel, with all their systematic killing and dealings, is a true picture of the aggressive drug and women trafficking which Jim Carroll had been successful in uplifting in his action-packed script.

Script to Film:

This script with all its exciting details and quipped humour can be a fantastic project as a film. There’s a perfect blend of magic realism with mystery and even science that would make it really interesting watch. The addition of violence in The Pickleball Killer with all the realistic details might seem uncomfortable but are a realistic stab for the audience. The plot is not far too removed from reality which helps the audience connect better with the story. Moreover the slice of mundane filial love, for members who are closer than blood relationships, brings a certain sense of pathos that highlights itself to a captivating range of viewers. Little moments of happiness between Amy and Brigg, her cooking for Brigg, learning to play Pickleball, her relationship with Julie and the final fight between the Enforcer of the cartel and Brigg all build themselves up into an excellent catalyst of the thrill which would be an amazing film to enjoy.


Jim Carroll’s The Pickleball Killer is a beautifully poignant yet expansive potboiler which is ready to transformed into a project for the audience. 

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