Stunned silence as I looked to where she stood across the bookstore. There she was, still the same person she always had been. I knew her instantly. I remember my thought leading up to this moment. I had things all planned out to say, things I wanted to do, things I needed to know. As I stood in line all these preconceived ideas went right out the window. She went back into an isle and I was starting to sweat. Should I talk to her? Should I just let it be? This was the first time I had seen her in many, many years. Rex's voice was in my ear now - "She's still in your system," he said, "Still there and you've stopped admitting it." This was during a particularly gruesome beer fest. Fifteen or so Miller High Life beers drunk and many still yet to go. "I am over her - WTF, I have to be over her by now." That was three years ago. As I continued toward where she was looking at something in the middle of the isle, I heard Harry Chapin's voice singing now. "Half the time thinking what might have been and half thinking just as well." She crushed me twice. Why in the hell would I want to talk to her ever again, let alone now? This was a pit stop at Exit 7 in Bristol to kill some time before the final stop in Abingdon to see Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. I had just had a nice meal at Ruby Tuesday's and it was my idea to go the to book warehouse. Now, as I stepped closer, she still hadn't noticed me. Of course I have changed dramatically since the last time I saw her. My head is shaved and I, unshaven for a few days looked like shit. Closer still, the seconds were like hours walking over to her. My left hand started quaking with a nervousness I had forgotten. Butterflies in my stomach with just the thought talking to her were almost unbearable. Fuck. What has she done to me? My next thoughts before I said the first words to her in almost nine years were of another girl I went out not too long ago. She knows her too and had told me I was still hung up on her. It may have been partially the reason we did not work out. I apparently had placed this girl, in the direction I was moving, on a pedestal that was so high and casting a shadow so large that was overwhelming to our mutual friend. She had mentioned this indirectly many times. At the time I thought she was nuts. Now I am not so sure. "Hey You," I said as I finally reached her. She looked up to see who had spoken (God, she hasn't changed) and, after a few seconds, I saw recognition in her eyes. Harry Chapin sang to me again - "And the look on her face as she opened the door was like an old joke told by a friend. It had taken ten more years to find her smile and I watched the corners start to grin." Not to say she hasn't been happy these years - I am glad to find out she had. She had a little version of herself running around the store and, luckily, her husband was in another isle away from our reunion. I am not sure it was all good and definitely know it wasn't all bad. I did find out I am in a lot of trouble because it suddenly seemed like yesterday and not eight years later. What is the pull? I still am not sure. I didn't get to meet her daughter and that might be good too as it might have made it even worse for me. Maybe this was a kick in the pants I needed. A wake up call for me to get off my ass and get a family, if that is what I want to do. When I am with someone else I don't even think of her, but now, being alone again for the holidays and seeing her and her perfect family, it makes me sad to think about what could have been. It could also be the wine buzz talking as well. Merry Christmas, such as it is....
Monday, December 15, 2003
Memento all over again
Recently I watched Momento again. This film still blows me away for its style and direction. Christopher Nolan - with this film - definitely proved that he is here to stay. I just hope he pulls off his Batman project because 1) I would love to see a Batman film done right and 2) I would hate him to have to work out from under the 'Batman Curse'.
Seeing the film again reminded me about a paper on the film I did for one of my film classes. I wrote this paper...then put all the paragraphs in reverse order than they originally appeared. It worked surprisingly well. I am gonna post it here...
Backwards is Forwards: A Unique Style
By Rob Biller
Some viewers will not like this new kind of technique, for the most part because it betrays the traditional style of narrative that they are used to. Others, like myself, will watch the movie over and over, picking up something new every time, and tell anyone who will listen that Memento is quite possibly the best film ever made.
While you watch Memento, things are definitely happening to your mind and emotions. Audiences get to stretch parts of their movie brains that they haven't had to for a while. They have to get used to a different way of perceiving a movie narrative. This kind of storytelling demands the closest kind of attention and is highly rewarding to the viewer. The scrambled-up film noir Memento proves that audiences do not need to be babied and that it's okay to confuse them by raising questions that will only be answered at the end. It is a movie that is best appreciated not while you are watching it, but while you're thinking back on it later.
By presenting events in Memento backwards, Nolan allows us to get into the mindset of the main character. Every scene starts the way it does for Leonard, with a sense of where am I confusion. Like Leonard, we don't have a clear indication of what happened before the current segment of time. We know some things from the past, but not the recent past. Like him, we are presented with numerous cryptic clues, some of which may mean something other than what they initially appear to represent. After throwing the audience in the middle of things, the film takes a step back to show the context for the action that we have just seen, in effect giving us the information that Leonard has forgotten. And, although it might seem that such an approach, which reveals the story's conclusion in the first five minutes, would lack tension, that's far from the case.
In addition to telling the story backwards, Nolan makes use of an ingenious narrative structure. He starts at the end and finishes near the beginning. The main narrative is presented as a series of three-to-eight minute segments, each of which ends where the previous one began. A second thread, which starts at an unspecified time in the past and moves forward to intersect with the main storyline, is used to buffer the "reverse" segments as well as to provide background information. Although this approach might at first seem confusing, it doesn't take long to get used to it, and to understand how well it works with this film.
Memento begins with a scene that summarizes what is to come. A man is looking at a just developed Polaroid picture. The picture begins to undevelop and goes back into the camera, the bullet goes back into the gun, and the victim is alive and talking. The film's plotline moves backward from that corpse on to the floor to reveal the series of events that led him to be there. We learn all of this in fragments.
Director Christopher Nolan tells the story subjectively in a way that mirrors Leonard's point of view, which creates a despairing backwards thriller. He creates a dystopia for one man that sends shock waves rippling toward anyone that he has contact with. Some see his problem as a handicap while others try and take advantage by manipulating him as a mean to their end.
The man, Leonard, was an insurance salesman and after a blow to the head he lost the ability to create short-term memory. Ordinary life would be tough enough with this handicap, but Leonard is trying to find the murderer of his wife. The catch is that even if he gets justice for his wife's murder, he won't remember it.
Memento, Latin for remember, means a reminder of the past, something that can be used to stimulate the memory or warn about the future. This title sets the stage for a thriller about a man who can remember nothing at all.
The film technique used in Memento is quite unique. Memento is a straightforward narrative told backwards. It is made up of color and black and white scenes. The color sequences are told in short, forward sequences, chronology arranged in reverse order; where each color sequence begins is where the next color sequence ends. The black and white sequence is actually the first sequence in the film that has been broken up into smaller segments and inserted throughout the film in real time. When the color sequences, at the end of the film, reach the beginning, the ongoing black and white sequence switches to color to reveal that it was indeed the first sequence in chronological order.
All people are at different levels of what we can remember. Some of us are able to instantly recall whatever we did yesterday or last week while some can't remember what they had for lunch. Forgetfulness can be a problem, but imagine if you can't remember what you did fifteen minutes ago. To have any distraction make you forget what you were thinking, who you were talking to, and to lose complete memory of any related events. Complete loss of short-term memory. Christopher Nolan tackles this subject in his movie Memento. Hang on for it will be quite a ride.
Have you ever forgotten to do something that you had been meaning to do all day? Remembering all day but still managing to forget? Have you ever forgotten what you did a previous day or evening? When someone asks what you did sometime in your recent past can you remember what that was?
Monday, December 08, 2003
Behind Blue Eyes
The biggest writing project I have done to date was turned in today for my Writing for Radio and Television class. It is a screenplay that I collaborated on with another student. He kinda vanished at the end so most of the ideas are mine and all the writing is mine. He was a poor pledge to a fart -- err.. I mean fraternity so his time was prioritized somewhere else I suppose. It is the pilot episode for an "upcoming" television show that had to be a continuing series. We chose the horror genre and was given a plot about a shapeshifter who is attending a college campus. When someone see them shapeshift - that person died. That was all we had to come up with -- after a few brainstorming ideas - and approving it with our teacher (the wonderful Candi Bryant and her assistant Yasmeen), this is the story that was produced. It's long (damn near 5,000 words!) and it will probably dominate the blog...if it screws it up I will make two posts...
Final Screenplay Dec 8, 2003
BEHIND BLUE EYES
SEASON 1 EPISODE 1
SCENE 1 - MEETING SHERYL DAVENPORT
AERIAL LS EXT CAMPUS...THE SHOT BLENDS IN CLOSER TO THE CAMPUS. MANY COLLEGE STUDENTS ARE WALKING TO CLASS. THIS SHOT BLENDS IN CLOSER AGAIN TO A MEDIUM SHOT OF A STUDENT WALKING SLOWLY ACROSS THE CAMPUS. SHE LOOKS UNSURE AND TENTATIVE. SHE DOES NOT KNOW ANYBODY AND PEOPLE ARE STAYING A GOOD DISTANCE AWAY FROM HER. HER DRESS IS A DARK SHIRT WITH LONG SLEEVES, SKIN TIGHT GLOVES, BLACK JEANS, AND WHITE ATHLETIC SHOES. SHE HAS VERY LITTLE MAKE UP WHICH MAKES HER HAVE A PALER THAN NORMAL COMPLEXION WITH DARK HAIR THAT IS SHORT TO THE SHOULDER BLADE. STRIKINGLY BLUE EYES STAND OUT. SHE STOPS IN FRONT OF A BUILDING AND LOOKS UP. CUT TO CLOSE UP OF NAME ON THE BUILDING WITH A BIG OUTDOOR CLOCK
Sine qua non
CUT BACK TO SHERYL (CLOSE UP)
SHERYL: (READING AND SPEAKING TO HERSELF) Something absolutely indispensable and essential...I can think of a lot of things more essential than English. (LOOKS BACK DOWN AT A SCHEDULE THAT HAS BEEN PULLED OF BOOKS BEING CARRIED. IN A PANIC YOU SHE BACK UP TO THE CLOCK ON THE BUILDING THEN TO HER WATCH. SHE MUTTERS A CURSE AND RUNS INTO THE BUILDING.)
SCENE 2 - LATE FOR CLASS
INSIDE THE ENGLISH BUILDING. LS OF THE HALL EMPTY HALLWAY. SHERYL ENTERS, RUNNING DOWN THE HALL TOWARD THE CAMERA. SHE STOPS IN FRONT OF A CLASSROOM AND LOOKS UP AT THE DOOR NUMBER .
CUT TO CS OF THE DOOR SHOWS IT TO BE SHUT AND LATCHED. THE SHADE IS ALSO PULLED DOWN OVER THE BIG WINDOW IN THE DOOR.
CUT TO CS OF SHERYL LOOKING AT CLOSED DOOR
SHERYL: (DISGUSTED AND TALKING TO HERSELF) So much for making a favorable first impression in English Lit...(SHE SLOWLY WALKS UP TO THE DOOR AND TRY TO LISTENS INSIDE. SHE HEAR WHAT APPEARS TO BE A TV PLAYING. SHE SLOWLY STARTS TO OPEN THE DOOR)
SCENE 3 - THE PROFESSOR
LS FROM THE BACK OF THE ROOM. STUDENTS SIT IN A DARKENED CLASSROOM WATCHING A CAMPUS POLICE VIDEO ABOUT CAMPUS SAFETY. THE TELEVISION IS HELD FROM ABOVE IN THE CORNER OF THE ROOM. THE DOOR SLOWLY STARTS TO OPEN ALLOWING LIGHT TO FLOOD INTO THE ROOM
CUT TO CU OF THE DOOR SLOWLY OPENING AND LIGHT PIERCING THE DARKNESS OF THE ROOM
SHERYL: (SHE SLOWLY ENTERS THE ROOM TRYING TO BE AS QUIET AS SHE CAN WHILE HER EYES ADJUST TO THE DARKNESS)
CUT TO MEDIUM CU OF CLOSING DOOR
SHERYL: (GETS THE DOOR SHUT QUIETLY BUT SHE MOVES TOO FAST AND RUNS SQUARELY INTO THE KNEE-HIGH, METAL GARBAGE CAN THAT IS JUST INSIDE THE ROOM. THIS CAUSES HER TO FALL DOWN AND LOSE HER GRIP ON THE BOOKS IN HER HANDS. THE BOOKS FALL TO THE GROUND AND LOOSE PAPERS GO EVERYWHERE)
CUT TO MEDIUM LS AS THE OVERHEAD LIGHTS TURN ON
SHERYL: (SHE IS STILL ON THE FLOOR DESPERATELY TRYING TO GET HER PAPERS PUT BACK INTO HER NOTEBOOK. SEEMINGLY OUT OF NOWHERE THE PROFESSOR APPEARS)
PROFESSOR MACKEY: (WALKS BARELY INTO VIEW) Ms. Davenport I presume.
CUT CU OF SHERYL SLOWLY LOOKING UP
PROFESSOR MACKEY (CONTINUING VOICE ONLY, SARCASTICALLY): Glad you could join us.
CUT TO PERSPECTIVE OF SHERYL LOOKING AT PROFESSOR MACKEY FROM THE GROUND. THE PROFESSOR IS QUITE TALL AND THIN WITH COLD, DARK, BEADY EYES. HE HAS A SMIRK ON HIS FACE. HE CONTINUES TO SPEAK BEFORE SHE CAN GET UP
PROFESSOR MACKEY: You are in college now Ms. Davenport and I would appreciate you getting to my class on time. If I was your employer... I would fire you on the spot...but I am not your employer...only your professor...but you will show me the courtesy of being on time.
CUT TO MEDIUM SHOT OF SHERYL AND PROFESSOR MACKEY. SHERYL IS FINALLY GETTING TO HER FEET. SHE IS STANDING IN THE CENTER OF THE ROOM. HER PAPERS ARE STICKING OUT OF HER BOOKS
SHERYL: (HER FACE IS DISTRAUGHT AND SHE IS TRYING TO APOLOGIZE) I am so sorry sir...my watch hasn't been set for...
PROFESSOR MACKEY: (VERY IRRITATED AND PACING; INTERRUPTING): Ms. Davenport...I think we should be well past petty excuses. The fact of the matter is that you are late and I will not have my time wasted with excuses. There is a strict attendance policy at this university and I feel that tardiness is kin to absenteeism. (HALF TURNS TO ADDRESS THE STUDENTS IN THE CHAIRS) So let's make that a rule...shall we? For every two times a student is tardy...that will be one absence.
SHERYL STARTS TO MOVE TO TAKE HER SEAT BUT BEFORE SHE CAN GET FAR
PROFESSOR MACKEY: Ms. Davenport? Did I say you could sit down?
SHERYL STOPS IN PLACE - PROFESSOR MOVES CLOSER TO SHERYL
CUT TO CU OF SHERYL
SHERYL: No sir.
CUT TO MS PROFESSOR MACKEY
PROFESSOR MACKEY: Although I'm not interested in excuses... but I do think that it's only fair that you tell the class why you were late on the first day and responsible for our first new rule of the semester. Don't you?(MOTIONS TO CLASS)
CUT TO CU OF SHERYL LOOKING NERVOUSLY AT THE IRRITATED CLASS
FADE OUT AND THEN TO INTRO OF SERIES
INTRO OPENING SEQUENCE OF PROGRAM
A MEDIUM LONG SHOT OF SHERYL DAVENPORT THAT SLOWLY MOVES IN TO A MEDIUM CLOSEUP. HER INTENSE BLUE EYES STAND OUT AS HEAVY FX GENERATED MORPHS BEGIN TO TAKE PLACE. SHERYL'S FACE MORPHS INTO OTHER PEOPLE ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â‚¬Å“ WHILE THE BLUE EYES STAY THE SAME AND DO NOT MORPH. THE WHO'S BEHIND BLUE EYES IS PLAYING IN THE BACKGROUND. THE SONG HAS BEEN CUT DOWN AND EDITED TO ONLY THESE VERSES:
No one knows what it's like
To be the bad one
To be the sad one
Behind blue eyes
No one knows what it's like
To be hated
To be fated
To telling only lies
But my dreams
They aren't as empty
As my conscience seems to be...
I have hours; only lonely
My love is vengeance
That's never free
FADE AUDIO - FADE OUT
SCENE 4 - FLASHBACK SEQUENCE 1
CU SHOT OF SHERYL DAVENPORT STRUGGLING TO GET FREE. SHE IS TIED, GAGGED, AND BEING PUSHED INTO A WHITE, STERILE ROOM WITH LIGHT FIXTURES AROUND THE PERIMETER BY TWO MEN IN WHITE LAB COATS. HER HANDS ARE IN GLOVES THAT GO MIDWAY UP HER ARM AND THE REST OF HER IS IN A REVISED HOSPITAL GOWN THAT COVERS HER ENTIRE BODY. THERE IS A SINGLE TABLE IN THE CENTER OF THE ROOM.
KRIS: (IMPATIENT) All you have to do is help me get her secure on the table.
DOUG: (AGGRAVATED) Don't forget these little favors...I should turn you in for these little experiments of yours.
KRIS: (RUSHING) Listen...I don't have time for this right now. We have got to get her secure on the table so I can administer this last dose. If it is not done soon...the results could be disastrous.
DOUG: (QUESTIONING) What the hell are these tests you've been...
AT THIS MOMENT - SHERYL GIVES OUT A BIG KICK TO DOUG'S CHEST. HE IS SENT BACKWARD VIOLENTLY INTO THE WALL. HIS HEAD HITS A LIGHT STRUCTURE AND HE LOSES CONSCIOUSNESS. SHERYL'S LEGS FALL TO THE FLOOR. THIS SUDDEN ABRUPT FALL CAUSES KRIS TO LOSE PARTIAL GRIP. SHERYL'S TORSO TWISTS AND FALLS HALF ON THE TABLE AND HALF OFF. HER HEAD HALF CLIPS THE SIDE OF THE TABLE AND HER GLOVED HANDS GETS CAUGHT ON THE GURNEY BEFORE KRIS CAN ESTABLISH A BETTER HOLD. AS HE IS TRYING TO GET HER SECURE ON THE TABLE, A GLOVE TEARS - EXPOSING ONE FINGER. WHILE RE-SECURING HER FEET TO THE TABLE HER HAND SLOWLY COME TO KRIS' ARMS AND SHE SLIGHTLY TOUCHES HIS WRIST. STILL NOT REALIZING WHAT HAS HAPPENED, KRIS TURNS BACK TO SHERYL, BUT NOW IS LOOKING AT A REFLECTION OF HIMSELF AND SEES A HEAD RAPIDLY MOVING IN HIS DIRECTION. NOT ABLE TO MOVE FAST ENOUGH, THE KRIS DOUBLE SLAMS HIS HEAD INTO KRIS SENDING HIM BACKWARD TO THE GROUND. HE STAGGERS BACK UP AND IS LOOKING AT A DOUBLE OF HIMSELF EXCEPT THE DOUBLE HAS BLUE EYES. HIS DOUBLE PUNCHES KRIS IN THE FACE AND IS ABLE TO GET FREE. DURING THE FIGHT WITH KRIS, THE DOUBLE OF KRIS IS ABLE TO GET THE SYRINGE AND PLUNGES IT INTO HIS NECK HOPING JUST TO STUN KRIS SO THE DOUBLE CAN ESCAPE. UNKNOWN TO THE DOUBLE OF KRIS, THE SYRINGE WAS NOT CALIBRATED YET AND A BIG AIR POCKET WAS STILL BETWEEN THE NEEDLE AND THE VIAL. WHEN IT IS PLUNGED INTO HIS NECK AND INJECTED IN, IT KILLS HIM. QUICKLY DECIDING WHAT TO DO - THE DOUBLE PULLS THE DEAD MAN UNDER THE TABLE AND COVERS THE TABLE DOWN TO THE FLOOR WITH THE SHEET FROM THE ROLL AWAY BED AND PUSHES THE ROLL AWAY BED OUT OF THE ROOM, AND TENDS TO DOUG WHO IS STARTING TO COME AROUND
DOUBLE KRIS: (CARING) Hey...are you OK? That looked like a nasty fall.
DOUG: (DAZED) What the hell happened??
DOUBLE KRIS: (HELPING KRIS TO HIS FEET - JOKINGLY) She kicked your ass...that's what happened!
DOUG: (LOOKING AT KRIS) Where'd she go?
DOUBLE KRIS: (MOVING SOMEWHAT BEHIND KRIS AND ANGLING HIM TOWARD THE DOOR - AVOIDING EYE CONTACT - DODGINGLY) I sedated her and took her back to her room...then I came back here to see how you were. You had best get to the infirmary and have that head checked out.
DOUG: (STILL DAZED AND CONFUSED) Yeah, I suppose you're right...Hey! what am I supposed to say? That some crazy bitch kicked me into a wall? I'd be questioned for hours!
DOUBLE KRIS: Just come up with something and I'll back whatever you say. Let's do our best to keep this under wraps...
DOUG: You really owe me this time...I think that bitch broke my head. (HIS HANDS ARE RUBBING HIS HEAD AS HE LEAVES THE ROOM)
ZOOM TO EXTREME CLOSE UP OF DOUBLE KRIS' BLUE EYES
SCENE 5 - PRESENT
EXTREME CLOSE UP OF SHERYL DAVENPORT'S BLUE EYES.
SHERYL: (SITTING UPRIGHT IN BED SCREAMING)
LEONA: (ROOMMATE - HAVING BEEN WOKEN UP - GROGGY AND CRANKY) Jesus H. Christ Sheryl! What's your problem?
SHERYL: (CALMED HERSELF) I'm sorry...just not used to having a roommate...I guess.
LEONA: I hope that's all it is...(NOW AWAKE)...you should just drop Mr. Mackey's class...He can be such a prick.
SHERYL: (DISAPPOINTED) That's just it...I can't. He is the only professor that teaches honors English and I won't give him the satisfaction of making me quit.
LEONA: Well...you'll have to do something.
SHERYL: I have a meeting with the campus psychologist today after class.
LEONA: Just great! I'm living with a crazy person...perfect...and for God's sake don't be late again!
SHERYL: That is not what a psy...oh... never mind.
SCENE 6 - PSYCHOLOGIST'S OFFICE
CUT TO PSYCHOLOGIST OFFICE OF DR. CANDI BRYANT
DR. BRYANT'S OFFICE IS SMALL BUT VERY NICE. IT HAS AN ADJOINING ROOM WHERE HER GRADUATE ASSISTANT YAS MEEN WORKS. IT HAS LOW, WARM LIGHT AS SHE USES SMALL LAMPS INSTEAD OF THE STRONG LIGHTS FROM ABOVE. THERE IS AN INSTANT COMFORT ZONE INSIDE THE OFFICE. A SMALL COUCH IS ALONG THE RIGHT WALL AND HER DESK IS ON THE LEFT. A CHAIR SITS ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE DESK. A BOOKCASE ROUNDS OUT THE OFFICE WITH MANY BOOKS, CDS, AND FILES IN IT.
MEDIUM SHOT OF DR. BRYANT SITTING AT HER DESK LOOKING THROUGH SOME FILES. HER SHOULDER LENGTH BLOND HAIR IS PINNED BACK AND SHE IS WEARING HER READING GLASSES. HER PERSONALITY IS INSTANTLY LIKE-ABLE BUT SHE WILL LET YOU KNOW WHAT IS ON HER MIND. YAS MEEN HAS LONG, WAVY, JET BLACK HAIR AND IS TALLER THAN AVERAGE HEIGHT.
DR. BRYANT: (OUTLOUD BUT TOO HERSELF, DISGUSTED) They told me when I was hired that I would only be in this office for a couple of months. It's been two years and I still can't find anything! GRRRR! (TURNS TO FACE THE ADJOINING OFFICE BEHIND HER) Yas...is the file for Sheryl Davenport in there?
YAS: (OFFSCREEN) Yes...it's right here. Do you need it?
DR. BRYANT: Yeah, could you bring it in here please? Ms. Davenport will be here shortly and I haven't been able to review her file yet.
YAS BRINGS THE FILE INTO THE OFFICE, PAUSES, LOOKS AROUND AND COMMENTS TO DR. BRYANT
YAS: This office just wouldn't be the same without you in here. I'm glad you didn't take the office that was offered to you.
DR. BRYANT: (STUNNED AT THIS DEVELOPMENT) What office?
YAS: (HANDS THE FILE TO DR. BRYANT AND CONTINUES AS SHE HAD NEVER LEFT OFF): Because if you had, we wouldn't have been able to continue to work together. (HAPPY AND SMILING, SHE TURNS TO LEAVE. ON HER WAY BACK TO HER AREA) I'm glad you stayed.
DR. BRYANT: (STILL STUNNED AND SAYS TO YAS, BUT MORE TO HERSELF AS YAS HAS ALREADY LEFT THE ROOM): We need to have a serious talk.
SCENE 7 - APPOINTMENT SCHEDULED
CUT TO FRONT OFFICE IN THE PSYCHOLOGIST DEPARTMENT- NORMAL OFFICE ENVIRONMENT. A SECRETARY IS SITTING AT HER DESK TALKING ON THE PHONE. SHERYL DAVENPORT WALKS INTO THE OFFICE HOLDING HER BOOKS. MEDIUM SHOT OF SHERYL ENTERING THE OFFICE, SHE WALKS PAST THE CAMERA AND IT FOLLOWS HER TO THE DESK OF THE SECRETARY WHERE SHE WAITS PATIENTLY. THE SECRETARY, A SHORT, DUMPY, HARD LOOKING WOMAN IS TALKING ON THE PHONE. SHE HOLDS UP A FINGER TO SHERYL WITHOUT LOOKING UP. A FEW MORE SECONDS PASS, THE SECRETARY FINALLY HANGS UP THE PHONE AND LOOKS UP AT SHERYL.
SECRETARY: (AGGRAVATED) Can I help you?
SHERYL: (NERVOUS) Yes, I have an appointment with Dr. Bryant. My name is Sheryl Davenport. I can come back later if this is a bad...
SECRETARY: (INTERRUPTING) No...no... that won't be necessary. (FLIPPING THROUGH APPOINTMENT BOOK) She is expecting you...go on in.
SHERYL: Thank you.
SCENE 8 - PSYCHOLOGY SESSION 1
CUT TO INSIDE DR. BRYANT'S OFFICE - DR. BRYANT IS SITTING AT HER DESK LOOKING AT A FILE. IT IS A CLOSE UP OF DR. BRYANT FROM THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DESK LOOKING AT THE DOOR. DR. BRYANT IS IN FOCUS WITH THE DOOR FRAME OUT OF FOCUS. WHEN SHERYL DAVENPORT APPEARS IN DOORWAY, THE FOCUS POINT BLENDS TO HER.
SHERYL: Dr. Bryant?
CUT TO MEDIUM SHOT OF BOTH SHERYL AND DR. BRYANT FROM THE VANTAGE POINT OF THE DOORWAY INTO YAS MEEN'S WORK AREA.
DR. BRYANT: Yes?(LOOKS UP) Ms. Davenport...please have a seat.
SHERYL WALKS INTO DR. BRYANT AND SITS DOWN IN THE CHAIR NEXT TO HER DESK. SHERYL IS A LITTLE DOWN BUT WARMS UP QUICKLY TO DR. BRYANT.
CUT TO MEDIUM CU OF DR. BRYANT
DR. BRYANT: (HAPPY DEMEANOR AND SINCERE, CARING) How have your first few days on campus been?
SHERYL: OK...I suppose. Mr. Mackey hates me.
DR. BRYANT: (TRYING TO LIGHTEN THE MOOD) Well, no one really likes Mr. Mackey...M-KAAY...
DR. BRYANT AND SHERYL: (LAUGHING)
DR. BRYANT: Seriously though...how are you adjusting to life on campus?
SHERYL: To be honest...it's harder than I thought it would be. I don't fit in anywhere. I can't get my schedule straight...Most of my teachers are understanding...except for Mr. Mackey of course. If he hadn't humiliated me in front of the class it wouldn't have been so bad. But he didn't even give me a chance to get up after I fell over the trashcan. He just started yelling!
DR. BRYANT: OK... First thing is to try and forget out what happened. Try and make a fresh start to his class. Leave extra early to make it to his class on time.
SHERYL: (QUESTIONING) I'll try...
DR. BRYANT: I want you to do more than try. Has you ever heard K.I.S.S. formula? Keep...It...Simple...Stupid. (FLASHES HER MILLION DOLLAR SMILE)
SHERYL: (SMILING) Yeah...I like that...Keep it simple stupid. Makes sense.
DR. BRYANT: Alright. (SLAPS HANDS TOGETHER) I think that we need to schedule some more sessions so I can help you adjust better. Take this form and fill it out. Bring it to me tomorrow at...umm...(FLIPPING THROUGH HER APPOINTMENT BOOK) how about 2 o'clock in the afternoon?
SHERYL: Yeah, that sounds OK. What's the form for?
DR. BRYANT: It is just your basic information for my records. It is like the form you filled out when you registered...but provides a little more information about your family. All information will be held confidential...but important for our sessions.
SHERYL: (SUDDENLY HESITANT) Why do you need more family information? I thought this was about me.
DR. BRYANT: We will be talking about you...but if you would rather...we can fill out this form later if you would like...(TAKING BACK THE FORM)
SHERYL: I would appreciate that. Thank you...
DR. BRYANT: OK... see you tomorrow then.
SHERYL GETS UP AND LEAVES. AFTER SHE LEAVE THE OFFICE...DR. BRYANT MAKES A FEW NOTES IN HER FILES AND CALLS YAS MEEN BACK IN THE OFFICE.
DR. BRYANT: Yas...would you come in here please?
YAS: (ENTERS OFFICE FROM HER WORK AREA) Yes ma'am?
DR. BRYANT: I need some background information on Sheryl Davenport. Something is going on with her.
YAS: How in-depth should I be?
DR. BRYANT: As in-depth as you can...
SCENE 8 - FLASHBACK 2
CAMERA SET IN THE FIRST PERSON VIEW FROM THE EYES OF THE PATIENT. WHITE WALLS AND CEILING GOING BY AS SOMEONE IS BEING PUSHED ON A GURNEY DOWN A HALL. THE GURNEY GETS PUSHED INTO A ROOM THAT LOOKS THE SAME AS THE HALLWAY. THE PERSON IS LOOKING UP ... THEN TO THE LEFT WHERE A SINGLE MIRROR SITS. WE FIND OUT IT IS SHERYL AND SHE IS DRESSED IN A HOSPITAL GOWN. A PERSON DRESSED IN DOCTOR'S SCRUBS MOVES INTO HER VIEW AND EXTENDS HER ARM OUT. SHE SEES A NEEDLE MOVING TO HER ARM. WE HEAR MUFFLED NOISES AS SHE IS TRYING TO SCREAM BUT HER MOUTH IS GAGGED. THE NEEDLE GOES INTO HER ARM AND BLOOD FILLS THE SYRINGE. THE NEEDLE IS REMOVED AND BANDAGE IS PUT OVER THE WOUND. THE SAME PERSON PUTS HER ARM BACK INTO A SECURE STRAP. ANOTHER PERSONS FACE IN A SURGICAL MASK COMES UP TO HERS AND LOOKS AT EACH ONE OF HER EYES WITH A LIGHT. SHE IS THEN WHEELED INTO ANOTHER ROOM. THIS ROOM IS A NORMAL HOSPITAL ROOM. SHE LOOKS TO THE RIGHT AGAIN AS AN I.V. IS STARTED IN HER ARM. AFTER THE I.V. IS STARTED ANOTHER SYRINGE IS BROUGHT TO THE EXTENSION OF THE I.V. AND A DRUG IS ADMINISTERED. AS THIS DRUG IS SENT INTO THE TUBE HER EYES DROOP...ONCE, TWICE... CLOSED.
SCENE 9 - CONFIDING IN HER ROOMMATE
MEDIUM SHOT OF SHERYL QUICKLY SITTING UP IN BED...STARTLED AWAKE FROM HER DREAM. SHE DOESN'T REALIZE IT BUT SHE SCREAMED JUST BEFORE SHE WOKE UP. SHE REACHES UP AND RUBS HER EYES.
SHERYL: Damn it!
LEONA: (SLEEPY - WOKEN UP AGAIN - OFF SCREEN) Jesus...(MEDIUM SHOT OF HER SITTING UP IN BED) just one nightÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â¦just one night I wish you would sleep the whole night.
SHERYL: (MEDIUM SHOT IN BED) Oh God...I...I'm so sorry.
LEONA: (MEDIUM SHOT LYING IN BED) Oh...I know that...now tell me what these dreams are you keep having.
SHERYL: (CLOSE UP) No...Go back to sleep. It's late and all...
LEONA: (CLOSE UP SITTING IN BED) Too late already up. Now spill it.
SHERYL: (CAMERA PLACED LOW POINTING UP. CU OF SHERYL AND MEDIUM SHOT OF LEONA) Just between us?
LEONA: Of course...
SHERYL: (MEDIUM SHOT SLOWLY MOVING IN TO HER FACE) I'm not really sure what they mean. (AS THE CAMERA REACHES HER FACE IT CIRCLES SLOWLY FROM ONE SIDE OF HER FACE TO THE OTHER) They are like memories coming in flashes in my dreams. I don't remember what I am seeing...but I remember everything after I wake up like it has awoken something in my memory.
LEONA: (CLOSE UP) What do you think happened?
(PROFILE SHOT) I think I was tested on with experimental drugs...but am not sure. Something about my hands...that is why I am always wearing my gloves. (CAMERA COMING AROUND TO THE FRONT OF HER FACE - HOLDING UP HER HANDS) I know I was restrained. (CAMERA STOPS AT CU OF HER FACE) I'm... I'm really scared.
SCENE 10 - TROUBLE AT THE PIZZA PARLOR
THE INSIDE OF THE PIZZA PARLOR IS OF RECTANGULAR SHAPE WITH A BAR AT ONE END. THE REST OF THE MAIN ROOM IS TABLES. ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE OF THE ROOM AWAY FROM THE MAIN ROOM IS THE KITCHEN. THERE ARE TWO WAYS IN TO THE KITCHEN - ONE THAT IS VISIBLE TO THE CUSTOMERS AND ONE THAT IS IN THE OPPOSITE END OF THE BUILDING NEAR THE RESTROOMS.
CUT TO SHERYL AND LEONA SITTING AT A TABLE. DOUG IS VISIBLE TO THE CAMERA WALKING PAST THE WINDOW AROUND THE OUTSIDE OF THE BUILDING. MEDIUM SHOT
SHERYL: Class today was rough. Mr. Mackey kept us the entire time. Can you believe that crap? At this rate we will be done by mid terms...
LEONA: (INTERRUPTING) Listen...I've sat here for thirty minutes and heard you bitch about everything. Christ...I didn't think there was that much stuff to bitch about...shut up and drink already!
SHERYL: Sheesh... If this were how you treat your friends...I would hate to see how...
THE CONVERSATION BECOMES BACKGROUND CHATTER AS THE CAMERA MOVES TOWARD THE BACK ENTRANCE OF THE KITCHEN. IT ROUNDS THE CORNER AND ENTERS KITCHEN COMING TO A STOP AS A CU VIEW OF THE LOCK ON THE BACK DOOR. IT SLOWLY TURNS AND THE DOOR OPENS. A BODY MOVES THROUGH THE DOOR
CUT TO MEDIUM SHOT OF SHERYL AND LEONA STILL SITTING AT THE TABLE. DOUG IS NOW SEATED BEHIND THEM WATCHING THEIR CONVERSATION.
SHERYL: ...So what about Richard from Geography? He's cute...
LEONA: Richard? The guy with the long hair and so many freckles it makes him look sick? No way!
SHERYL: Like you will find anybody in here.
SHE GLANCES AROUND THE ROOM AND STOPS WHEN SHE SEES DOUG. SOMETHING IS RECOGNIZABLE ABOUT HIM BUT SHE CAN'T PLACE IT.
MEDIUM CU OF DOUG WORRIED THAT SHE RECOGNIZES HIM.
SHE TURNS BACK TO LEONA
SHERYL: Hey...See that guy sitting at the table behind me? Do you recognize him?
LEONA: (LOOKS OVER SHERYL'S SHOULDER) No...But I would like to. Damn...he's hot!
LEONA STARTS TO GET UP TO GO TO DOUG'S TABLE WHEN THE LIGHTS GO OUT IN THE BUILDING. THERE IS A SCREAM FROM THE KITCHEN AND A LOUD ANIMAL GROWL COMES FROM THE KITCHEN. THE OTHER CUSTOMERS GET UP AND RUN TO THE DOORS AND FIND THEM LOCKED. THE GROWLING GETS LOUDER - CLOSER. SHERYL FINDS HER WAY IN THE DARK TO THE BACK ENTRANCE OF THE KITCHEN. SHE IS SCARED BUT CONFIDENT THAT SHE CAN DO SOMETHING. SHE HEARS SOUNDS OF THE KITCHEN BEING TORN UP AND CAN SMELL FRESH BLOOD IN THE AIR. SHE SEE THE CHEF LYING IN A POOL OF BLOOD. THERE IS A LARGE CREATURE STANDING ON HIND LEGS JUST PAST THE DEAD MAN RUMMAGING THROUGH ALL THE PANS WHILE SNIFFING WILDLY. THE CREATURES HEAD IS JUST OUT OF SITE BUT THE ENTIRE BODY SEEMS TO BE COVERED IN HAIR. HER IMMEDIATE THOUGHT IS WEREWOLF...BUT SHE KNOWS SUCH THINGS ARE FICTIONAL. SHE TAKES OFF ONE OF HER GLOVES - BEING CAREFUL NOT TO TOUCH ANYTHING. SHE SEES A BUTCHER KNIFE THAT THE CHEF THREW DOWN BEFORE HE RAN OUT OF THE KITCHEN. SHE GRABS IT AND SHAPE SHIFTS INTO THE BIG CHEF. (FOR THIS SCENE THE CAMERA SHOT WILL BE A CLOSE UP OF HER GRABBING THE KNIFE THEN CUT TO A MEDIUM CLOSEUP OF SHERYLÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢S FACE AS IT CONTINUES TO ZOOM IN. AS IT IS NEARING AN EXTREME CU OF SHERYLÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã¢â€žÂ¢S BLUE EYES WE SEE SPECIAL EFFECTS OF HER FACE STARTING TO CHANGE. AT THE POINT OF EXTREME CU OF HER EYES THE CAMERA PULLS BACK TO REVEAL HER IN THE FORM OF THE CHEF) STILL HOLDING THE KNIFE THE CHEF CHARGES THE BEAST. SWINGING WILDLY - THE BEAST TAKE A SWIPE IN THE CHEF'S DIRECTION. NOT BEING ABLE TO DODGE QUICK ENOUGH THE CHEF IS HIT AND SENT FLYING ACROSS THE ROOM. THE CHEF LANDS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE DOUGH TABLE AND ONTO THE FLOOR. THE BEAST RUNS OUT OF THE DOOR AND BACK INTO THE NIGHT. THE LIGHTS FINALLY COME BACK ON AND SHERYL IS FOUND BY LEONA (IN HER NORMAL FORM) LYING UNCONSCIOUS ON THE FLOOR.
LEONA: Sheryl! Oh God! Sheryl!
SHE RUNS TO HER AND CRADLES HER HEAD IN HER ARMS. SHE SEES A GLOVE, GRABS IT AND PUTS IT BACK ON HER HAND BEING CAREFUL NOT TO TOUCH THE UNDERSIDE OF HER HAND.
LEONA: Help! I need help here!
DOUG RUNS INTO THE KITCHEN AND HELPS LEONA GET SHERYL TO THE HOSPITAL.
DOUG: Here...let me help.
LEONA: Thanks...What the hell happened in here? Did you see?
DOUG: No...I didn't. What was the growling?
LEONA: Beats the bejezus out of me...We had better get her to the hospital.
THE DOORS SHUT AS THEY TAKE SHERYL...IN DOUG'S ARMS... OUT OF THE PIZZA PARLOR AND TO THE HOSPITAL.
SCENE 11 - RECOVERY
SHERYL WAKES UP IN THE HOSPITAL. A DOCTOR IS LOOKING AT HER AND CHECKING HER PULSE. SHE IMMEDIATELY PULLS HER ARM BACK AND NOTICES HER GLOVES ARE BACK ON HER HANDS. DOCTOR DRAKE...A YOUNG...ATTRACTIVE...MID 20'S DOCTOR IS SMILING DOWN AT HER.
DR. DRAKE: (MEDIUM CU) If you are wondering how your gloves got back on your hands...your roommate was quite insistent that you keep them on...said you have a thing about your hands. Since it was your head injuredÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã‚Â¦and not your hands...I didn't see a problem with letting you keep them on. What happened to them?
SHERYL: (DEFENSIVE - CU) Accident when I was a kid. They are scarred.
DR. DRAKE: I can take a look if you li...
SHERYL: (TOO FAST - MEDIUM CU) No! (SLOWING DOWN) I mean...no thank you. (FORCES A SMILE) I have been to many doctors...too many...if you know what I mean.
DR. DRAKE: (SMILING - MEDIUM) Of course...I understand completely. You have a mild concussion and you will be fine. I am going to let you rest and I'll be back in a few hours to check on your condition.
SHERYL: (MEDIUM CU) A few hours?
DR. DRAKE: (MEDIUM) You took a nasty fall. I am still not clear exactly what happened but you're fortunate for it not to be any worse than it was. After a few hours of rest I think you will be ready to go home.
SCENE 12 - DOUG
DOUG AND LEONA ARE MAKING OUT ON THE COUCH IN THE DORM ROOM. THE DOOR OPENS AND SHERYL WALKS IN. IT IS A CLOSE UP SHOT THAT PANS OUT AS THERE ARE FAINT SOUNDS OF KEYS OPENING THE DOOR. AS SHE ENTERS THE APARTMENT SHE IS FIDDLING WITH THE KEYS AND SPEAKS TO LEONA WITHOUT LOOKING UP.
SHERYL: (MEDIUM SHOT) Thanks a lot. I had to take a taxi back here. It cost me fifteen freaking dollars. Where have you be...
SHERYL LOOKS UP AND SEES THE TWO STILL MAKING OUT ON THE COUCH. DOUG HAS HIS BACK FACING THE DOOR.
SHERYL: (MEDIUM) Oh...I'm sorry. I didn't know you had company. I see you have been keeping busy.
THEY STOP KISSING AND LOOK OVER TO SHERYL.
LEONA: (BACKPEDALING AND LOOKING AT WATCH - CLOSE UP) Oh crap! I can't believe I've let time get so far away from me. I'm so sorry!
DOUG: (TURNS TO FACE SHERYL - PAN FROM SHERYL - HOLD CLOSE UP) Hello Sheryl. How are you feeling?
SHERYL: (CLOSE UP) I'm sorry...do we know each other?
DOUG: (MEDIUM CU TO MEDIUM OF BOTH DOUG AND LEONA) I don't think so. I helped Leona get you to the hospital.
LEONA: (HOLDING MEDIUM SHOT OF DOUG AND LEONA) Yeah Sheryl...He was great. He picked you up and carried you to the car like is came natural to him. He is such a natural at helping others...
DOUG: (INTERRUPTING ON PURPOSE - CHANGING SUBJECT - MEDIUM CU) You may have seen my band play before. Have you ever seen the group Downbleed play? It's just Dawg...our lead guitarist...and me right now. I play drums and sing. We are looking for a bassist if you know anyone.
LEONA: (SLAPS DOUG ON THE ARM - MEDIUM SHOT OF DOUG AND LEONA - HOLD THROUGH THEIR CONVERSATION) Hey! I play the Bass!
DOUG: (SURPRISED) Too freaking cool! Wanna play sometime?
LEONA: Hell yeah!
SHERYL: (CLOSE UP - NOT SOUNDING CONVINCING) That must be it...
DOUG: (MEDIUM SHOT - GETTING UP AND HEADING TOWARD DOOR) Well, I must be going. I will give you a call. That is just too cool you play the Bass.
LEONA GIVES DOUG A LONG PASSIONATE KISS AT THE DOOR. CLOSE WIDE ANGLE SHOT WITH SHERYL IN THE EDGE OF THE SCREEN WATCHING.
AS THE DOOR CLOSES DOUG MAKES EYE CONTACT WITH SHERYL AND SMILES - A CREEPY SMILE (CLOSE UP OF SHERYL'S FACE REACTING TO THE SMILE. SHE TILTS HER HEAD IN CONFUSION AND FEAR.)
SCENE 13 -FINAL TEASER
THE CAMERA SHOT IS SKIMMING ALONG THE TOP OF THE GRASS AT A HEIGHT OF ABOUT TWO FEET THROUGH A PARK. AN OPEN MANHOLE COMES INTO VIEW AND THE CAMERA DROPS DOWN INTO THE SEWERS. IT MEANDERS ITS WAY THROUGH THE BIG, OPEN SEWERS THAT ARE BIG ENOUGH TO STAND IN. AROUND ONE MORE BEND AND THE CAMERA EYE PICKS UP SOMETHING MOVING IN THE DISTANCE - JUST AS THE BIG ANIMAL MOVES OUT OF FRAME - IT TURNS THE CORNER. AS SOON AS THE CAMERA HAS TURNED THE CORNER THE VIEW IS REALLY CLOSE TO THE ANIMALS FOOT - A DOG STARTS BARKING - GROWLING AND ATTACKING WILDLY AT THE LARGE ANIMAL. THE CAMERA MOVES SLOWLY UP THE BIG ANIMALS LEG AS IT IS SLOWLY RAISED UP. IT STOMPS DOWN AND THERE THE SOUND OF THE DOG SQUEALING - THEN ABRUPT SILENCE. THE CAMERA STILL PANS FARTHER UP THE CREATURE UNTIL WE SEE THE FACE OF KRIS FROM THE LAB - THE BLUE BLINDING BEHIND HIS EYES.