Author Topic: Screenplay extract  (Read 1712 times)

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Garam

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Screenplay extract
« on: April 20, 2006, 08:28:19 AM »
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Here's a screenplay extract I did a few months ago for my A level film studies course. The limit was 2000 words (10% either way) and we could write about anything. Apparantly I'll get a decent mark for it, but only because the examiners are relieved to read anything that isn't a Pulp Fiction/Adaptation knock-off. I think there're some continuity errors, but I can't be bothered fixing them. I tried to make it fairly realistic, but I think it came across as slightly boring. Oh well.

Enjoy, or at least endure.

1.  EXT. PHILADELPHIA STREET – AFTERNOON

(A desolated industrial complex casts a reflection upon the damp grey streets. A convoy of trucks charge through, leaving a small cloud of pollution. When the fog clears, we SEE a man, dressed in a grey tweed trench coat. His brown hair is slightly messy. He looks confident and he is smoking a cigarette, the smoke blending into the fog above. He seems to be in his late thirties. A heavy rain sets in.

He walks down the street and runs across the road, causing the trucks to come to a halt. We HEAR the drivers beep and shout while the confident man chuckles to himself. He slows down.

With a third of the cigarette left to smoke, he flicks it into a nearby puddle, and enters a liquor store. A store clerk is leaning on the counter, reading a dog-eared paperback book. A bell rings and he notices the confident man in the grey trench coat and puts down his book. The man in the tweed coat starts picking bottles from their shelves.)

STORE CLERK:

Hey Will. Thank God, I’ve been bored out
 of my fucking mind here.

(WILL walks up to the counter and unloads an armful of whisky and wine bottles.)

WILL: (Nonchalantly)

Uh huh.

(WILL grabs another armful of bottles.)

STORE CLERK:

All well, is it? How’s Elaine?

(WILL unloads another armful of bottles. There is some rum and vodka too, this time.)

WILL:

What? Elaine moved to Canada a year ago,
 remember?

STORE CLERK:

Oh yeah. Sorry, I forgot.
WILL:

No need to be sorry.

STORE CLERK:

Yeah, I know. Why’d she move?

WILL:

It was a year ago, Dave. Ancient fucking
history, man.

DAVE:

Yeah, but I forgot. Why’d she move?

(WILL unloads one more armful of bottles on the desktop. One of the bottles rolls over the edge and smashes on the dirty floor.)

WILL:

I’ll pay for that. This is all I’m getting,
 for now. She went to college there.
 How much?

DAVE:

That is… thirty dollars exactly.

WILL:

Well, I only have twenty. I owe you ten.
 It may be a while before you get it
 because I quit my job today.

DAVE:

What? Why?

WILL:

I just felt like it.

(WILL looks at his bottles.)

WILL:

Can you drive my bottles and me to my car?

DAVE:

Is it far?

WILL:

It certainly is not. Not far at all.
 Two minutes, tops.

DAVE:

Well, all right then. Turn the sign to
 ‘CLOSED’; I’m going to get my keys.

(WILL turns the sign and DAVE leaves the room. WILL quickly fills his pockets with small bottles of vodka from the shelves. He opens the cash register and takes out a bundle of money. He takes a look at it, then puts the majority of it back and closes the till. DAVE walks back into the room, looking glum.)

DAVE:

Ready?

WILL:

Ready. Help me with all this booze.

(They each grab an armful of bottles and leave the room. A bell rings as the door shuts.)

WILL:

You gonna lock that?

DAVE:

Nah. Two minutes, right?

WILL:

Sure.

2.  INT. DAVE’S TRUCK -- AFTERNOON

(DAVE is sat on the right, looking irate. He scratches the back of his head, while WILL sits next to him drinking. The whisky bottle he holds up to his mouth obscures his face and he looks like a Picasso portrait. He rolls down the window.)



DAVE:

This is a little more than two minutes,
Will.

(WILL throws the empty bottle out of the window.)

WILL:

That’ll save us some grief. What? Oh,
stop being so pathetic. You said yourself
that no one’s been in all day but me
anyway.

DAVE:

That’s not the point.

WILL:

Uh huh. It’s a real tragedy.

(He opens another bottle. He drinks half of the bottle in one swig.)

DAVE:

How’s that guy. Uhh, you know…Charlie.

WILL:  (Laughing)

You kidding me? Christ, Dave. Get with
the times. He killed himself a year ago.
 Jumped off the bridge and shot himself
before he hit the floor. Extravagant bastard.

DAVE:

Jesus! That was Charles? I always
thought he had his shit together.

WILL:

Nah, he was a nutcase. God knows why he
did what he did though. He always told
me suicide was a sign of weakness. For
cowards, he said. Exactly those words.
But then, he always was a self-deprecating
little prick.


DAVE:

How do you mean?

WILL:

I’m not really sure. My car’s over there,
near that bunch of pigeons.

(DAVE turns towards the pigeons. They stay put.)

WILL:

What the hell are they doing?

(WILL leans over DAVE and honks the horn.)

WILL:

Get the fuck out of the way, you stinking
animals!

(The birds fly away.)

WILL:

Ignorant pricks. Help me with the stuff.

(WILL walks out of the car, towards his own; a rusting red Chevrolet. He leans against it and swigs the rest of his whisky. When he is finished, he throws the bottle into some nearby bushes.)

DAVE:

Come and fucking help me. I’m doing you
a favour by being here at all.

(WILL walks up to the bushes and starts to piss.)

WILL:

You can do me a favour by shutting up.
Stop being so damn melodramatic, man.
It’s a couple of bottles; you’re not
carrying your cross to your crucifixion.
Ship-shape, man.

(DAVE walks up to the rusting car, balancing a small mountain of alcohol bottles in his arms.)

DAVE:

You need to open the trunk. I’m having
enough trouble holding the things.

(WILL walks up and unlocks the door. He opens the back door of the car.)

WILL:

Throw ‘em in the back. Trunks piss me
off.

DAVE:

Hah. Whatever you say, Nadire.

(DAVE drops the bottles onto the back seat of the car.)

WILL:

Thanks for this. I’ll see you later.
You’ll get the money from me soon, I’m
sure.

DAVE:

No rush. Don’t hit any kids on the way
home.

WILL:

Don’t worry. It’s about three. Still at
school. Plus, I’m sober as a judge
anyway.

DAVE:

Whatever you say. See ya.

(WILL nods and enters his car. He reverses, and DAVE drives away, beeping once while he nods once again. WILL raises his eyebrows in acknowledgement. He drives away, in the direction of a flock of pigeons.)

3.  CUT TO: INT. HALLWAY -- NIGHT

(WILL rushes through the door and down the hallway. He enters a room and walks back into the hallway 10 seconds later with two suitcases. He leaves the hallway with a suitcase in each hand.)


4.  EXT. STAIRWAY -- NIGHT

(WILL places a suitcase on its side and pushes it down the stairs. It flips over halfway down and the lock breaks. Clothes and books spill onto the wet street below. He turns from locking the house door and looks horrified.)

WILL:

Oh…for FUCK’S SAKE! FUCK FUCK FUCK!
MOTHERFUCKER!!

(Several lights turn on in the surrounding houses. WILL takes no notice. He runs down the stairs and grabs a bundle of clothes. He opens his car door and throws them in. He makes three trips to gather all the clothes and books together. Some neighbours are looking out of their windows at him.

WILL throws the broken suitcase in the middle of the road, and then walks up the stairs again to retrieve the other suitcase. He grunts as he lifts the suitcase up onto the back seat of the car. Several bottles clink together as the huge black bag crashes on top of them.

WILL sits down at the wheel and lights a cigarette. He turns on the radio. A husky-voiced presenter informs him that this is ‘the twilight hour’. Gentle jazz music begins to play. He drinks the remainder of the rum left in a bottle on the seat next to him and starts the engine. He attempts to run over the broken suitcase he left in the road, but it is too large. It scrapes along the front of the car for 20 feet or so, and then careens to the side of the road, into a murky gutter. He drives on above the speed limit for another three blocks and then swerves a right turn. He laughs. He’s drunk.

WILL drives on, in a soulful mood. He hits his car horn in unison with the shrill sound of the trumpets in the jazz music playing, which has become much more aggressive. He slows down, rolls down the window and spits at a gang of youths. They run into the middle of the street, cursing and waving their fists at the speeding car. He laughs some more.)

5.  INT. A COFFEE SHOP -- NIGHT

(The coffee shop is lit by dangerous looking electric lights. There is a solitary soulless clerk dressed in a degrading green hat and a stripy apron. He stands behind an array of neatly assorted donuts. Possibly the one thing he takes pride in. Possibly. There is one other customer in the café. An attractive looking woman aged around 25. She is dressed in black; she is smoking and reading a book.)

WILL:  (Under his breath)

Clever lady, have we?

(WILL turns towards the clerk. It takes him a couple of seconds to notice his customer. He also seems transfixed on the young lady.)

COFFEE CLERK:

How can I help you?

WILL:

Don’t I deserve a ‘sir’?

COFFEE CLERK:

Pardon me, sir?

WILL:

Much better. I’ll have a coffee and …
a donut, please. One of the tasty ones.

COFFEE CLERK:

Which coffee would you like?

WILL:

What? I want one of the ones that contain
caffeine. Give me some milk and sugar
too. You clerks always mix it wrong,
and it tastes like porridge.

(The coffee clerk smirks.)

COFFEE CLERK:

Of course. Sir.

(WILL turns around while he’s waiting and looks at the young woman. WILL squints his eyes to check the author of the book she’s reading. It’s a female author that WILL doesn’t recognise. The coffee clerk appears behind the donuts again.)

COFFEE CLERK:

Coffee’s ready. Sir. Way you like it.
Caffeine and all.

WILL:

Don’t get too ahead of yourself, son.
I’ll see if it’s up to scratch. What
about the donut?


COFFEE CLERK:

Take your pick.

(WILL examines the large variety of donuts available. After a good 25 seconds of tough decision-making, he chooses the perfectly round donut filled with purple goo. A light substance is sprinkled over it with a taste he cannot describe.)

COFFEE CLERK:

Nice choice. That’s two dollars, sir.

(WILL grabs a handful of coins from his coat pocket and drops them on the counter.)

WILL:

I think there’s enough there.

(While the clerk sorts out the pennies from the quarters, Will takes another chance to admire the elegant woman.)

COFFEE CLERK:

Your change, Sir.

WILL:

Thanks. You think she’s trying to look
French?

COFFEE CLERK:

I really wouldn’t know, sir.

WILL:

Of course not. Enjoy your life.

COFFEE CLERK:

You too.

(WILL grabs his coffee with his right hand, and scoops a handful of coins up with his left. A couple of pennies escape his grasp and fall on the floor, where they will stay. After he drops the coins into his pocket, he picks up his donut and walks towards the young woman. He places his coffee down on the table adjacent to hers, and sits down.)

 

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