Artificial Stars in a Neon Sky

neonskypBLACK SCREEN

All the following is voice over.

AUTHORITY
You had a another bad dream?

BEAT.

AUTHORITY (CONT’D)
Do you want to tell me about your dream?
BOY
Do you like Stars?
AUTHORITY
Do you want to talk about your dream?
OURMAN
No.
BOY
I like stars too.

FADE IN:

INT. THE MALL – DAY.

OURMAN stands alone in a sea of busy people, rushing with purpose. Alone in thought. Out of place but in the way.
He stands there obstinately refusing to go with the flow. The sea of people made up those hustling along, all dressed differently but somehow the same.
Scattered around The Mall, Burly armoured security officers watch the traffic. OURMAN observes one officer pick someone out the crowd and scan their ID.

OURMAN turns and walks out of the river of hurried souls…

ANOTHER ANGLE:
…to a shop window filled with discount delights.

He presses his nose against the glass,lost in thought staring through the toy shop window. Staring at the blister pack of “glow in the dark stars”.

INT. THE BOSS’S OFFICE – LATER.

OURMAN is standing on the weak side of THE BOSS’s desk, allowing the tirade of abuse to be thrown at him.

OURMAN zones out so that the sweaty mans rant becomes a buzz of mumbling gibberish.

The hum of the Air-con unit becomes more pleasing to him.

The hum becomes a rattle, the rattle becomes a violent vibration.

The lights in the bland office spark, but the BOSS continues his tirade uninterrupted merely raising his voice to counter what sounds like an incoming train.

All of a sudden there is silence.

BOSS
You hear me? Are you even listening?

WHAM!

A giant mutant Chinese dragon rips through one wall into the office and gobbles up the BOSS and exits through the opposite wall. Leaving behind a cartoon-like bite out of the office space revealing hissing pipes, sparking power cables and a uninterrupted view of the night sky.

A single tear runs down the cheek of OURMAN.

EXT. BOOTLEGGERS MARKET – NIGHT

OURMAN is looking around the market amongst the filth and the dirt. The market looks for all the world like the hastily cobbled together stalls of a music festival that was abandoned decades ago, but now refuses to pack up and leave.

The people down here are not as well dressed as the mall people and have their own kind of hurry. Hungry and poor they do seem happier then the mall dwellers or maybe they just have a better sense of irony.

Out of nowhere, THE KID knocks into OURMAN who doesn’t react, except to check his pockets as the kid runs off.

THE KID joins his mate wearing a playboy bunny T-shirt (BUNNY) and together they perform an elaborate game of “steal the food parcel”.

BUNNY plays obvious and loud.

THE KID plays it cool until he sees all eyes are on BUNNY then he lifts the package, then both dart back into the crowd.

A GYPSY WOMAN calls out to OURMAN. He ignores the gnarled woman and moves on.
She walks in parallel to him trying, market sellers and their wares between them, trying to head him off.

GYPSY WOMAN
I have what you want.

OURMAN looks at her for a moment but doesn’t reply.

GYPSY WOMAN (CONT’D)
No point reading your future.

OURMAN keeps walking. The GYPSY WOMAN comes over to him, blocking his way and grabs his arm with a vice like strength.

GYPSY WOMAN (CONT’D)
The fat man said I would find you here.

INT. THE MALL – DAY.

OURMAN carries a large brown parcel under his arm. He moves with the current of Mall Dwellers but is frustrated – now they move too slow.

Rush hour?

THE KID appears out of nowhere and runs right in the path of OURMAN, sending THE KID flying.

OURMAN steps out of the stream of people and goes to help the kid.

THE KID
You can’t use it. You mustn’t use it.

POW! BUNNY snatches the parcel from OURMAN and tries to escape with it, heading for an open vent. BUNNY runs and dodges the crowd with the energy of his namesake on an early summer morning.

OURMAN grabs hold of THE KID as he struggles to release himself from the Man’s iron grip. BUNNY barely a metre away from an open vent slides under the legs of his final obstruction and disappears into the vent with the parcel.

OURMAN turns to THE KID and for the first time we see real emotion – anger.

A small metal canister sails over the crowd and bounces into the open vent.

WE HEAR the clink-clink of the grenade bouncing to a halt on metal grates.

WE HEAR a tiny BLEEP.

A Hiss.

Smoke slowly bellows out of the hole literally smoking out the now choking BUNNY, pushing the box out ahead of him.

Heavy black boots step into frame reveal their owner – a security officer in full riot gear.

BUNNY starts to protest but a second security officer, again in full riot gear, Tazers the lad into a quivering semi-coma.

OURMAN turns his gaze back to THE KID he’s still holding onto. THE KID’s bravado all gone, the Man releases his grip and lets the kid go.

FIRST SECURITY OFFICER
Hey you Citizen. Wait there!

The First Security Officer goes off after the kid. The Second positions a cordon around the BUNNY and signals to OURMAN to explain himself. OURMAN doesn’t see this he simply stares at the open, shocked eyes of the still twitching BUNNY.

INT. OURMAN’S APARTMENT – NIGHT

OURMAN, barefoot, sits on his bed staring into nothing – The Parcel, unopened, next to him.
His apartment is a small studio, in reality a one double bedroom that has been converted into a flat. The underlying structure of the fixtures and fittings is utilitarian. It’s former life looks like it was once an office.

On top of that, OURMANS’s touches. A collection of cacti where your would imagine there should be a fire. Old plastic toys, framed national geographic pictures of beautiful skies. Day, night – all beautiful. In the centre of the room a large fake wool rug holds the Mans unlaced high-tops and socks.
OURMAN gets up and tries the handle of his apartment, but it is locked. Behind him the view screen illuminates into life.

AUTHORITY
You are under 48 hour house arrest for aiding a criminal activity pursuant to the outland citizen act of 2037. Any attempt to break house arrest will result in criminal proceedings. Penalties including a reduction in citizenship privileges, a fine representative of two years pay and a possible cryo-sentence of 3 to 5 years. Would you like to speak with a legal representative? You are reminded that doing so in no way implicates your guilt.
OURMAN
No.
AUTHORITY
This message is brought to you by Monsanto-Smithkline, a family business. Have a nice day.

The screen goes blank again. OURMAN goes back to the bed and looks at the parcel. There’s a Security stamp on it that reads “Scanned for Possible Security Risk”.

The parcel has been opened and resealed – very badly. OURMAN slowly unwraps the brown paper and reveals a solid plastic box.

A few dents and burns but the box is intact.

OURMAN struggles to find a way into the box, but does so and finds crumpled up balls of paper protecting another box inside.

He takes the inner box out. This one too is wrapped in paper. Resealed too.

Again badly.

He takes this out and turns the box over. Gives it a little rattle. Nothing.

Again he takes off the paper, throws it onto the floor with the rest of the wrapping and opens the new box.

Inside…more paper…and another box.

This continues a few times until OURMAN is left with a large pile of wrapping paper, balls of crumpled newspaper and 6 boxes all progressively smaller.

The last box he holds in his hands – a tiny cigar box.

OURMAN opens the box and inside is a receipt. On the receipt is a hand written smiley face and a thank you.

OURMAN angrily throws the box against the door, setting off the house arrest message.
He walks to pick up the pieces of the box and starts to put the pieces back together absentmindedly looking at the piles of rubbish on the floor.

…seeing something.

INT. THE FATMAN’S BAZAAR – NIGHT.

FATMAN
I gave you what you asked for?

OURMAN grabs the FATMAN’s tie and slams his face down on the desk and when the FATMAN get’s back up OURMAN presents the bloody nosed FATMAN the smiley-faced receipt.

FATMAN (CONT’D)
And you have my receipt?

Again OURMAN slams the FATMAN’s face into the desk.

FATMAN (CONT’D)
This is a little out of character for you my friend.

OURMAN goes to slam the FATMAN again but…

FATMAN (CONT’D)
No. No. Enough. Christ. This nose cost me a pretty fortune. Now it’s broken. I don’t understand. I gave you what you wanted and you lost it.

OURMAN says nothing

FATMAN (CONT’D)
Why would I risk my reputation and stiff you? I may be many things but my word is my business.

OURMAN notices that everything has gone deadly quiet.

FATMAN (CONT’D)
Help. He’s trying to kill me. Help me.

EXT. THE FATMAN’S BAZAAR – NIGHT.

Three Security Officers storm the bazaar to see the FATMAN lifting his head up off the desk – nose all bloody. The curtain behind him flutters like someone has just left – OURMAN has fled.

Two officers go after him – one stays behind.

FATMAN
Ow my nose!

OFFICER 3 seems not to be bothered.

FATMAN (CONT’D)
Tell me the truth…is it bad?

EXT. BOOTLEGGERS MARKET – NIGHT.

OURMAN runs through the crowd. Chased by the two Security Officers.

As he runs, he pushes people over, throwing stalls, pots, anything to slow his pursers down in a desperate bid to get away. The Officers in their heavy armour find it hard to dodge the items, but they are still close behind.

The crowd opens up allowing OURMAN a free run to an storm drain half buried in the ground. The crowd assists OURMAN by throwing objects at the officers, momentarily slowing security down.

This works for a moment until the Officers start shooting Tazer bolts into the crowd sending random bystanders into spasms of electrified convulsions.

Man slides into the exit tunnel, slams the grate behind him and is gone.

The security officers stop at the grate careful prodding the gate open, peering cautiously inside.

Both commit to the chase and start stripping their armour off.

WE HEAR their Comms bleep.

OFFICER ONE
Yes Sir. He’s in the tunnels. Sorry sir? Yes sir.

Officer One looks to his partner.

OFFICER ONE (CONT’D)
We gotta report back. Call it off.
OFFICER TWO
What?
OFFICER ONE
Call it off.

INT. OURMAN’S APARTMENT – LATER

The door swings open and OURMAN walks in barefoot, boots in hand, muddy and literally covered in shit.

INT. OURMAN’S APARTMENT SHOWER – LATER.

OURMAN washes the crud off himself. Blood streams down his leg into the plug hole, mingling with the grime of the tunnels.

WE INTERCUT to his’s daydreams of the night sky. A small boy looks up at him as OURMAN stares through a telescope, ignoring the child.
The boy scared standing in his parents doorway.

OURMAN in bed with his wife.

OURMAN
Bad Dreams?

The kid doesn’t answer just climbs into bed.

OURMAN (CONT’D)
You wanna talk about it?
BOY
No.

The bright eyes of the Dragon hurtles towards us, smoke bellows from his nose. Teeth razor sharp.

CUT TO:

INT. OURMAN’S APARTMENT – NOW.

OURMAN runs his hand over his newly shaved head. Clean at last.

OURMAN standing drying himself looks down at his feet, at Something stuck to the sole.

He half bends meeting his lifting foot and peels the packing paper off his foot.

He studies the paper a little and it reveals itself to be a newspaper clipping.

Something about it upsets OURMAN and he turns to slam it on the wall now covered in the scraps of paper from the boxes.

A collage of articles stuck to the wall all are about various ecological disasters, nuclear accidents, man made catastrophes.
In the middle the wet paper from his foot – an article about a car crash. Drunk driver. Family killed.

The Video screen comes on. THE BOSS starts screaming at him about being late for work.

OURMAN hangs up.

Screen goes blank.

BOY (V.O.)
Tell me about the stars?

Then flickers up a moment with Boys face.

BOY
Do you like stars?

Man picks up the cactus and throws the plant pot at the screen.

Not satisfied he smashes up his room.

INT. HALLWAY OUTSIDE MANS APARTMENT.
They are all the same.
Rows upon rows of identical cubicles, rundown and stacked together like a madman’s vision of Kowloon tenement blocks.
Neighbours poke their head out of their rooms to see what the noise is. A door swings open and broken bits and pieces of his apartment fly out and crash onto the walkway.

Then it all stops.

The neighbours lean in.

Another item careens out of OURMAN’s Apartment and another…

And another.

The violent excommunication of OURMAN’S property continues until there seems to be nothing else that can be thrown out.

BEAT.

OURMAN walks out of his apartment. As one brave/Nosey neighbour steps forward.

NEIGHBOUR
Are you throwing this stuff out?

INT. THE SHOPPING MALL – NIGHT.

OURMAN, hidden in the shadows, watches the sealed off vent where BUNNY was gassed out.
A night Security officer, less armoured much older and fatter than previous examples, walks past as OURMAN retreats into the darkness a little more until security has gone.

WE SEE the vent rattle a little. Something inside pushes the vent out – struggling with it unable to budge it.

Tiny little fingers push through the mesh and violently fight with the mesh to no avail.

The fingers disappear and WE HEAR muffled swearing.

Arguing?

BLAM! A swift kick of a boot kicks the grill out clattering onto the malls walkway.

Two arguing kids push out the box – the original box and quickly head over to where OURMAN is hiding.

OURMAN retreats into the darkness and back into the corridor only to have his exit blocked by a gang of kids headed up by THE KID.

THE KID
You again!

OURMAN looks at the gang weighing up whether he could take them all. He turns his attention back to the THE KID.

OURMAN
Give me the box.
THE KID
Really? Give me the box? Can’t have it not yours. Property of the revolution now.

OURMAN just looks at them – This is the revolution?

THE KID (CONT’D)
You fucking people make me sick. Consume and devour that’s all you know. Fucking arseholes. Look at what you did. You happy?

No answer from OURMAN.

THE KID (CONT’D)
It’s your generations fault that we’ve ended up here. Trapped like rats. Subdued by your ego and your endless dissatisfaction.

OURMAN is unmoved.

THE KID (CONT’D)
Why you want the box? You can’t use what’s inside. You know that don’t you?

Nothing.

THE KID (CONT’D)
Fuck you old man. I should drop you where you stand.
OURMAN
Give me the box.
THE KID
No pleases or thank yous? Give me one good reason why I should even entertain the idea of giving you the box.

OURMAN leans in close to THE KID – putting “The Revolutionaries” on edge. THE KID signals them to be be cool.

OURMAN then whispers into THE KIDS ear then pulls back awaiting an answer.

BEAT.

THE KID (CONT’D)
Give him the box
THE KIDS HENCHMAN
But the…
THE KID
Give him the fucking box.

THE KID’s henchman does so and OURMAN leaves.

THE KID (CONT’D)
You can’t use it old man. You know that don’t you. You can’t fix what’s broken.

OURMAN keeps walking.

THE KIDS HENCHMAN
Why’d you give him the box?
THE KID
When it’s finished with him, we won’t need it anymore.

INT. THE APARTMENT – SOME TIME LATER

On the floor, Naked with his back to us, OURMAN solders the last component onto the unseen device. A wisp of solder smoke snakes up towards the smoke sensor in the ceiling. Before it has a chance to set of the sensor a polystyrene cup is slammed over it – the layers of tape, crushed lip is held in place until a new temporary fix can be applied.

WE SEE the room is now stripped bare. The smashed view screen flickers unwilling to accept it’s own demise.

WE HEAR the door alarm go off and on the broken plexiglass split screen CCTV images of a Pair of Security Officers and OURMANS nagging NEIGHBOUR bending their electronic ears about her “Horrible neighbour”.

OURMAN doesn’t answer. SECURITY 1 pushes THE NEIGHBOUR back as she continues to rant – He speaking into his radio for instructions. SECURITY 2 impatiently bangs on the door

WE SEE the apartments door has been welded shut and two gas bottles standing by the door.

OURMAN gets up ignoring the banging and sticks another glow-in-the- dark-star to the black ceiling where it joins a myriad of other stars – all of various shapes and sizes.

OURMAN takes the still unseen device and plugs into the jumbled guts of cables now spilling out of the apartments wall onto the floor. Carefully he positions the device to face him and he switches it on.

At first, nothing happens.

He steps back into the furthest corner and waits.

XCU almost macro of tightly wound coil of slowly warming wire. Inert Black turns white as decades of dust and neglect are burned away.

Slowly we begin to DOLLY OUT in time with the gently warming coils. The smoke ends and the now white blue steel becomes a dull red.

WE HEAR the analogue PING of components and cold metal come to life as the dull red becomes brighter and brighter.

As we continue to DOLLY OUT the three bar electric heater comes to life. The bright warm glow and heat illuminating OURMAN’s apartment and body.

He closes his eyes and we now see OURMAN is standing in his own replication of a desert morning. The Stars Glow above. The walls are not black but deep blue of the most beautiful skies. The electric heater as it warms, mimics the rising of the sun.

We continue to Dolly out past OURMAN, as the walls of his apartment seem to disappear. We get lost in his fantasy as he gets lost in his desert.

We keep going and going. The sun keeps rising. The stars move across the sky making room for the sun until all we see is desert.
And then…

We glide out into space and see we’ve been on a space station the whole time. OURMANS’s block just one arm of a giant spoke in an even greater wheel all watched by the brown wasted corpse of a ravaged Earth.

And there, from where we came from, a now tiny explosion bellows into space.

FADE OUT:

NEXT STORY

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Double sided Business Card designs, for the Diary and for myself. What do you think? Which splats or pics or wording do you prefer? Let me know in the comment. Ta. 
#businesscards #design #screenwriting #behindthescenes #makingof #sexybathrobe #nolife #mostpeoplewouldbematerbating #notme #sittingwriting #allalone DiaryofShortDisturbances.blog #screenwriting #DarkPathMovie "Every great magic trick consists of three parts or acts. The first part is called "The Pledge". The magician shows you something ordinary: a deck of cards, a bird or a man. He shows you this object. Perhaps he asks you to inspect it to see if it is indeed real, unaltered, normal. But of course... it probably isn't. The second act is called "The Turn". The magician takes the ordinary something and makes it do something extraordinary. Now you're looking for the secret... but you won't find it, because of course you're not really looking. You don't really want to know. You want to be fooled. But you wouldn't clap yet. Because making something disappear isn't enough; you have to bring it back. That's why every magic trick has a third act, the hardest part, the part we call "The Prestige". Christopher Priest, The Prestige #screenwriting too close to what I am writing right now! Motherfucker! Damn! Wait....it's a PG?!??? #DarkPathMovie. #MidnightRun #blackandwhitephoto #MidnightRun #WintersComing Time to loose a few kgs. 
#abstractphotography #artifical #colours The Frankenbeast gets power mad. Now it balances on my shoulder. #filmmaking #dslr #cameraoperator  #grip #canon #magiclantern This came today. 
Sooo exited. Sooo beautiful.  #loomis #howtodraw #backtothedrawingboard #screenwriting #DarkPathMovie part 10 releasing later tonight. Just wrote probably the most horrific scene today. This is the scene that breaks the movie to the audience and shows them how... Nope you'll have to read it to understand.
 After this script is done I'm writing a movie about pink bunnies  that live in a world without predators.  End of act two? Heading into the third and final act of the film. Heading into the home stretch now.  #moviemaking #script #horror #thriller #camerarig The Frankenbeast is taking shape. New secondhand #alphatron EVF and cage from @smallrigchina  took a gamble and very happy with the products. Cheap but not chearful. More to come... #moviemaking #DoP #cameraoperator #director
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