Reflections of a Motor City (Manuscript)



This is the story of the birth of Motown and its stars as Berry Gordy struggles to get some big talent into record deals. The result is that Marvin Gaye, Smoky Robinson, Diana Ross and the Supremes, The Temptations, and many other acts land record deals. However, the struggles never entirely end for Berry or for his talented artists.

Dove Review

The front of the manuscript says “An original work based on a true story.” The story is about Berry Gordy, a man who served in the military, failed as a boxer, a record store owner, and in other endeavors, but dreams of making it big in the record business. He goes after his dream but encounters many disappointments along the way. Once he starts adding some real talent and producing records, he deals with being cheated out of royalties. However, he hangs in there and is involved in the birth of Motown, the great record company and historical time which produced artists Diana Ross, Smoky Robinson, Marvin Gaye, and many other great talents.

Mr. McMillian Jr. is a talent himself, having written a literate and interesting screenplay. I finished the 164 page manuscript in slightly over two hours of straight-through reading time. There is some humor included, for example a scene which involves Stevie Wonder. Wonder, who of course is blind, is about to speak with three women he knows. He asks a friend what they are wearing and when he talks with them he compliments them all on their attire. They are amazed and believe he can now see! Wonder and his friend share a good laugh over the inside joke.

The screenplay is dramatic and features a female character who endures several miscarriages, a man who has two women leave him, and the great pain of losing someone to death. The script includes some strong language, but comes in at a level two in our rating. Had it been a level three, it could not have received our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal. As it is, it is a well written story but parents will need to look at the content listed below to determine if they want their children ages twelve and above to read the story. The time period, including a flashback scene, covers the late 40s to 1969 and winds up by mentioning Billy Davis and Michael Jackson.

This script takes you back to the fifties and sixties and includes the reader in the news of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. It is a gritty story but reflects realistically the time period which it covers. We gladly award our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal to “Reflections of a Motor City”. Let this script take you back!

Content Description

Sex: A few couples kiss in a few scenes.
Language: H-16; A-2; D-2; B*tt-1; S*cker-2
Violence: A boxing scene in the beginning with some thrown punches; a fight in a bar; a few moments when characters are angry as they speak; a character seems to be hiding the fact her husband beat her; a car runs off road into ditch but no one is hurt.
Drugs: Several scenes of drinking beer; a few scenes of consumption of champagne; a character says he is going to go have a beer; the smoking of cigarettes and a cigar.
Nudity: None
Other: The subject of divorce and death and it's subsequent pain are featured in the script, as is a character who has several miscarriages.


Company: EastWest Films
Writer: Clark B. McMillian, Jr.
Genre: Drama
Reviewer: Edwin L. Carpenter