CRUEL REALTY – CHAPTERone
I’m posting the first 10 pages of several screenplays I wrote. Which ever one gets the most interest (if any) will be the next experiment in my PICTUREplay format.
First up, we have CRUEL REALTY. This is a movie in the same vein as something like BASIC INSTINCT ( a sexy R-Rated murder mystery ) with an affable (almost goofball) author writing about a female serial killer inspired by the Occult.
CRUEL is a dramatic thriller concentrated on deceit and murder and understanding, but it does have its share of lighter moments.
The film also thematically examines humanity’s cruelty in destroying nature to make skyscrapers and plug & play subdivisions.
(click, listen, scroll – CHOPIN … NOCTURNE op.9 No.2)
Pages 1 – 11
C R U E L R E A L T Y
copyright, all rights reserved, 06/14 – thelastfountain (at) gmail (dot) com
INT. UPPERCLASS HOUSE – AFTERNOON
A framed photograph of a happy family.
Delicate hands pick it up. A nail-polished finger glides over the face of the smiling mother.
The reflection bouncing off the glass frame shows a sad thoughtful woman.
This is MARILYN STONE, early-30s. Her sad face examines the photo in her hands. Slowly, a bizarre smile reaches across.
Marilyn stands at the fireplace, examining decorations on the mantlepiece of this ornate upper-class house.
This long haired, long legged, Brunette glides across the hardwood floors, as she examines the rest of the room.
Click, CLACK. Her red stilettos echo in the empty house, as she strides along. Marilyn’s dressed to kill. A short business skirt and tightly fitting dress-shirt.
EXT. HOUSE – CONTINUOUS
The upper-class house has two stories above ground. A well-manicured lawn is claimed by a REAL ESTATE sign, reading: “OPEN HOUSE TODAY”.
VOICE Do you like what you see?
INT. HOUSE – CONTINUOUS
Marilyn turns to the voice, her hair whipping in the air.
She sees a real estate AGENT, in her late 40s.
AGENT I have a brochure adjusted for décor inclusion.
MARILYN Yes. It’s rather opulent.
AGENT Opulent? Well, I’m sure the price isn’t.
MARILYN Looks expensive.
AGENT That’s the idea, no?
The Agent smirks as she looks Marilyn up and down, scrutinizing her “expensive” clothes and her slim figure.
AGENT (CONT.) By the way, I like your shoes.
MARILYN Really? Wanna walk a mile in em?
AGENT (laughs) It works though. Your legs look great.
MARILYN I’ve worked for those too.
AGENT (smirks) My name is NICOLE. I’d be glad to show you around.
They shake hands. Nicole shows Marilyn around the house.
MARILYN Nicole. I’m MARIE LeFRANCOISE. Have I seen you at the gym?
AGENT/NICOLE Me? No. I’ll do yoga every now and again. You know, when they have those entry specials.
MARILYN Hmmm. I’ll have to look into that.
NICOLE It’s trending, I guess. But I realized I could do a lot of that from home.
MARILYN Quite right.
NICOLE Have you seen the kitchen? It’s fully remodelled with a large central island.
MARILYN Good. My husband’s a chef. You might have seen him on TV.
NICOLE Really? Is he the one who swears at everyone.
MARILYN No. No.
NICOLE You’re lucky. A man who cooks.
MARILYN I suppose. I’ll let him cook most nights. Especially, when his kids are over.
NICOLE Nice role reversal.
MARILYN Not really. I’m quite an accomplished chef myself. I’m more of a health nut I suppose.
NICOLE No meat? No dairy?
MARILYN I try not to.
NICOLE Oh. Are you vegetarian?
MARILYN You say it like it’s a bad word. I left something in the kitchen actually. I thought it’d be a nice surprise.
NICOLE For me?
MARILYN Yeah. If you want it? The vegan menu isn’t that bad.
NICOLE Thank you. I’ll have it once we’re done.
MARILYN Oh, am I your last appointment?
NICOLE So to speak. The open house is over soon. So, Marie, what do you do? If you don’t mind–
MARILYN That’s a secret.
MARILYN No, no. I’m joking. I’m in human resources.
NICOLE What, like a secretary? Or do you hire people or–
MARILYN Something like that. It’s so boring. So I mix it up. I’m into adventure.
NICOLE Hmmm. So do you box or something? Is that how you get that body?
MARILYN A little of this. A little of that.
NICOLE Don’t be so modest.
MARILYN (quick) Traditional boxing. Muay-thai. Gymnastics. Skydiving. Base-jumping. Motorcross. Surfing, when I can. Free diving. Free running. Parkour.
NICOLE Are you serious?
MARILYN (sarcastic) I’m not modest.
NICOLE (laughs) Then you might like the bedroom. Follow me.
EXT. HOUSE – AFTERNOON – A BIT LATER
A crystal door knob turns. The front door opens. Marilyn steps out and casually strolls the laneway.
INT. CAR – CONTINUOUS
Delicate hands flip a visor. Marilyn looks to herself in the reflection. That same sad face from before.
She wipes off her bright lipstick with a Kleenex.
She looks to herself – a moment. Then flips the visor shut.
INT. HOUSE – A BIT EARLIER
The mantelpiece. The photo of the smiling family. Another ornament next to it. Then a blank spot.
Something is missing.
The large counter is filled with beauty products. The large mirror is surrounded by large bulbs.
Something strange stands out. Next to the brass sink.
It’s a small ornament, weaved from reeds and decorated with sticks. It resembles the figure of a woman with straw hair.
Nicole stands. Puzzled. She WAS wiping some food from her mouth, now her napkin is held, frozen, in mid-action.
The strange woven ornament stares back at her.
Nicole picks it up. Confused. She examines it. Turning it around in her hands. She’s creeped out.
She looks in the mirror. Wondering. Who left this behind?
(click, listen, scroll – CHVRCHES … UNDER THE TIDE)
EXT. APARTMENT COMPLEX – NIGHT
The stars are out, but they are covered by smog. All the lights in apartment windows, and the neon, act as the stars below – illuminating this dark night.
INT. APARTMENT – CONTINIOUS
Fingers type away at a keyboard. No nail polish.
A leggy blonde is curled up in a comfy chair. She twirls about a curl of hair in her fingers.
The computer displays the online BLOG of some OCCULT site.
There are ancient symbols, like pentagrams, lining the border of this framed world.
It’s MARILYN. She has curly blonde hair that reaches to her shoulders. She wears a RAINBOW BRITE t-shirt, and white cotton underwear.
BLOOP. She gets an alert from her TWITTER subscription feed.
It’s the headline of the city newspaper.
“ANOTHER REAL ESTATE AGENT KILLED.”
Her feet swing down to the ground. She hunches over, and leans into the monitor.
Marilyn scans the article.
“…POINT TO THE OCCULT…”
Marilyn blinks several times. She moves her soft lips slightly, as she reads the article.
“…POTENTIAL BUYERS PREVIOUSLY KILLED…”
“…LINK TO BLACK MAGICK…”
Marilyn stretches her arms and cracks her knuckles.
She reaches for a cigarette. And lights it.
She exhales a thick plume of smoke, as she uses the mouse.
An option box is clicked. It reads: “CREATE NEW BLOG ENTRY”.
Marilyn hunches over her keyboard. Furiously typing away.
The cigarette bobs in her mouth as she inhales. She winces her eyes to filter out the travelling smoke. She’s focused.
The logo for her blog site is a dripping heart. The name: “THE DAILY BLEEDING”. Her pen-name is “IVORY ROSE WHELAN”.
A black cat runs by, and approaches Marilyn. It rubs against her ankles, purring. Then meows.
MARILYN Not now, Zombie. Once I finish this.
The cat, Zombie, meows again. Marilyn blindly reaches down and pets the cat.
She stares at the monitor, and finishes off the sentence.
“SO I ASK AGAIN, WHO IS THIS CRAZY WITCH?”
She clicks on “COMPLETE” and sends off her blog.
A delicate hand opens a cupboard. A few cans of soup. Some stacked Ramen noodles. Kraft Dinner.
Marilyn grabs a tin of cat food.
The wet meat slides and plops into the cat dish.
MARILYN (disgusted) Here. Take it, Zombie. Wish you ate veggies. Ewww.
The cat gulfs down its food. Savage gulps.
Marilyn grabs an apple from a fruit bowl.
She takes a bite. The juice drips from her lips, down her chin. She sucks in the juices, and takes another bite.
She strides down the hall in her underwear, eating.
(click, listen, scroll – THE STOOGES … I WANNA BE YOUR DOG)
INT. OFFICE – MORNING
Fingers type away at a keyboard. Fast and with intent.
A man hunches over his computer.
The office walls are lined with papers and photos. Case details that reference the Occult and the Realty murders.
This is MYLES HARKAWAY (late 30s). Slightly messy, scruffy beard, unkempt hair. He’s been awake for too long. The bags under his eyes say it all.
The page he’s writing now is headlined: “CHAPTER 5 – IN WHICH WE LEARN OF THE OLD ONE.”
Myles relaxes back, cracks his knuckles with a heavy sigh.
He rubs his eyes.
He moves the mouse and CLICKS on “SAVE DOCUMENT”.
He looks to the photos plastered all over the office.
He looks to a reprint of a crude ancient drawing. A horned god – human looking, with the antlers of a deer.
MYLES The Old One?
BRRRD BRRRD. His phone vibrates on his desk, underneath a few sheets of paper. They glow see-thru, under text describing: “THE LIGHT AND DARKNESS OF BEING”.
Myles swears. Then snatches the phone. He swipes across its surface. It’s an alarm. It reads: “GO TO BED, MYLES”.
He rises from his chair. Crooks his back. Pats down his messy hair. And turns away from the desk.
His bare-feet slip into some officious slippers.
The office door closes.
A nametag hangs, and swings in motion. It reads: “MYLES HARKAWAY – AWESOMEST AUTHOR YOU KNOW.”
The last name HARKAWAY has been vandalized with magic marker. Altered, it reads: “HACKAWAY” instead.
Myles shuffles along the hallway in his blue slippers.
He shields his eyes with his arms, as he passes through some sunshine streaming in.
It’s becoming clear this isn’t an office, but rather an APARTMENT. He walks to a door and opens it.
Slippers stand at the toilet. Myles relieves himself.
He looks at his dishevelled appearance in the mirror.
MYLES Uggh. Shave. Tomorrow. I promise.
Bare-feet exit the slippers.
Myles climbs inside some comfy sheets, of his twin bed.
His bedroom looks like a college dorm. Posters for movies and bands performing at underground clubs.
An eerie poster for “AMERICAN PSYCHO” stares across from his bed. A poster for “BLACK SABBATH” hangs over his door.
Myles rolls across his pillow and stares at his clock. It reads 11:38 AM.
He sighs in frustration. And rolls over again, the other way, away from the clock.
He stares out at the dark wall. The dark nothing.
(click, listen, scroll – TANGERINE DREAM … SORCERER)
INSERT: TELEVISION NEWS
A square-jawed news anchor, JULIAN WINTERS, debates current affairs behind a large desk with a well-dressed woman, JANE FINCH, in her early 60s.
WINTERS May. July. August. September. Two in October. So far. Surely this indicates escalation. The killer can’t control their impulses. And now it seems he’s shifted his focus to the realtor agents themselves. Miss Finch? Should we be scared?
FINCH Are you in the market for a house?
WINTERS I. I don’t–
FINCH We must develop a thick skin when dealing with cases such as these, Julian. A sense of humour helps.
WINTERS But isn’t that what’s so unusual about these cases. We haven’t had a murder here in decades.
FINCH Decades ago, this was all farm land. The green belt is retreating. When the population increases, well, everything else increases. Crime being one of those things. Murder being another.
WINTERS Is it possible that the killer roams from state to state? And this is why we are suddenly thrust into our current state of terror.
FINCH Serial killers are known to switch up their methods and location to evade capture or discovery. Yes.
WINTERS Is it possible that other murders are not attributed to serial cases?
FINCH Quite right. If they are successful in evading connection the killer may get away for years and years.
WINTERS Tell our viewers who you would suspect. What would your profile say?
FINCH Since I am retired, I no longer have the same access to the case files, but from what I can extrapolate, I would say he is a single white male in his mid-to-late 30s.
WINTERS That’s rather vague.
FINCH Well, Julian, most serial killers happen to fit into these parameters. Experience tells me he toys with the police as he gains confidence. Evading capture loses its appeal. The killer craves attention for his superiority. He wants them to know how smart he is. How much better he is.
WINTERS You make it sound like a sport, Miss Finch.
FINCH Perhaps, that is how he sees it, as well. He wants to win. And we want to win. He exhibits increasingly braggadocios behaviour – he is trash talking, if you will.
WINTERS You mean the artefacts left behind?
FINCH Precisely. Julian Winters. While the authorities are very careful not to describe them in any detail. It is important to with-hold some evidence, so as to weed out those who would take credit for these heinous crimes.
WINTERS Why would someone admit to something they didn’t do? And something like that?
FINCH In a way, they get the attention they no doubt have seeked out their entire life. Or they may simply be attracted to the darkness of man. The eternal mystery.
WINTERS Like you, Captain Jane Finch?
FINCH Precisely. There is a darkness which propels me forward. I am quite curious as to how he can do that and I can’t. Aren’t you? How can man slaughter his own kind merely for pleasure? It something so compelling.
WINTERS But you’ll never know the answer.
FINCH Perhaps. Yet each time I learn a little more. A complete picture slowly forms.
WINTERS I ask again. Should we be scared?
FINCH There are numerous ways in which you can die today. This is merely one. We should never be afraid of anything.
WINTER How many does our open house killer need to murder before you are afraid?
Jane Finch, doesn’t answer, but she smiles. An eerie smile.
INT. LIVING ROOM – LATE AFTERNOON
The television plays the news. Finch smiles on screen.
MYLES (OS) She did it.
Myles sits on his couch with his friend, PENELOPE (early 30s) beautiful, with shoulder length curly RED hair.
They both laugh.
What do you think?
This thriller is focused on character, but murder will be in no short supply. And it gets a lot steamier as it goes too.
What do you think of AMBER HEARD? I’m ready to see her portray more complex characters?
Have you given up on TAYLOR KITSCH? I can’t wait to see what he does on TRUE DETECTIVE.
Do you like the Canadian content? We the North, right.
I’m highlighting some ATOM EGOYAN regulars for supporting characters.