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by Elizabeth (elizabethayoub@bellsouth.net)

Rated: PG-13   Genre: Drama   User Review:

A lonely man spies on his neighbors. One night, he witnesses what he believes is a crime, only to later find out it was a misconception.

This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.


RICHARD HOLBROOK, age 38, rather lean except for the
discreet belly. He is wearing a pair of Dockers, a white
shirt and a worn beige army jacket with a logo on the side
that reads "Company 467." He's smoking a cigarette.

RICHARD walks toward his building complex, comprised of two
towers with a center courtyard.
RICHARD overhears an argument between SAID and LYLA as they
head toward the opposite tower block.
But dad, I want to go! Why can't I
go to my prom party? Please let
me...uncle Tony is letting Mariam
and Mary go, why can't I go? I
promise I'll be...
I said no! When I say no, I mean
SAID looks at LYLA's pants. Her belly button shows.
And I don't want to see you
wearing those pants again, you
understand! Cover up!
The elevator door rings. The number 9 lights up at the top
of the elevator.
The elevator door opens. Richard walks out with his mail in
hand. The number 9 is on the wall.

Richard passes by two girl friends talking and laughing


As they walk away, he turns and looks at their behinds.
      (to girlfriend)
What a weirdo...
Richard walks to his apartment, key in one hand mail in the
Richard throws his keys on a table next to the door. He
places the mail on his kitchen counter and heads quickly
into his bedroom.

His apartment is simple and void of anything that spells
family. There are two posters hanging on the wall, in
between a bookshelf. One poster has the photo of a gun, with
a tagline that reads: NRA - Effective Handgun Defense. The
other poster is the first page of the U.S. Constitution,
with "WE THE PEOPLE" in big, bold, black letters.
The three-stack bookshelf is filled with books and
magazines. There's a stack of porn videos in the bottom

On his living room table, there's a collection of PLAYBOY
magazines as well as a magazine that reads: THE MODERN
PARTRIOT - As Seen on Fox News. There's a pack of
cigarettes, an ash tray with three cigarette buds.

Accross the living room, next to the window, there's a
tripod stand with a blanket covering it.

Next to his bedroom matress, on his night stand, rest
several medications: a large bottle of sleeping pills, a
bottle of Scotch and a glass.
Richard comes out of his bathroom. He sees the light
blinking on his answering machine. He presses the button as
he walks over to the kitchen.

The machine announces he has one new message.


                       MOTHER (OS)
Rich, honey...it's mom...are you
there? I'm calling...to see if
you're coming to visit...it's been
a while...and...we miss you...I'll
bake that pie that you love!
      (sigh of defeat)
Well, I just wanted to tell you
that I love you...and that we miss
you...All right son, take care
now. Bye, bye.
Richard, with beer in hand, walks to the answering machine
and deletes the message. Next to the phone is a dusty
picture frame of an elderly couple.

Richard takes a sip of beer and walks over to the window. He
lifts the cover from the tripod stand. We see a night-vision

Richard peeks into the scope and he scans the opposite tower
block, focusing his lens. He stops at a window and sees an
obese woman getting dressed.
CU Richard squints.
Richard moves focus to the next window. He sees Lyla in
front of her mirror, placing a red, sexy dress against her
chest. Richard zooms in on her face, breasts and legs. Lyla
is talking on the phone, smiling flirtaciously.
Lyla's mother, a 40 year-old Muslim woman wearing a
headscarf, is sitting in the living room watching TV with
her husband, Said. Richard sees Lyla's mother pick up the
phone and listen while Lyla continues to talk in her room.
Richard scans back and forth between Lyla's bedroom and the
living room.

Richard sees Lyla's mom talk sternly into the phone. Lyla is
annoyed and hangs up the phone.

Richard sees Lyla's mother entering Lyla's room. She screams
at her, takes the phone away from her, scolds her while
pointing at the red dress that's lying on her bed. Lyla is
pleading with her mother. Lyla's mother grabs the dress and
takes it with her as she leaves the bedroom.
Richard sees Lyla falling on her bed and crying. Richard
takes a sip of beer and looks back into the scope.


      (under his breath)
Fucking Arabs...
Richard sees Said pace around the room pointing his finger
in the direction of Lyla's bedroom and scolding the mother.
Lyla's mother is sitting down on the couch, nodding in
Richard sees Lyla storm out of her room in tears and head
toward the apartment's enterance. Lyla's mother stands up
and follows her and tries to grab her by the arm, while Said
is screaming at Lyla. Lyla opens the door and closes it.
Richard sips the rest of his beer. He looks at his watch and
heads toward the TV. He turns on the TV to the Fox News. He
places the beer bottle on the table and walks over to the
Richard removes a plate of fried chicken and mashed potatoes
from the microwave. In the middle of the plate, there is a
small, round container with gravy. He sticks his finger in
the gravy.
      (in pain)
He sticks his finger in his mouth while he opens a drawer.
He gets a knife and fork then closes the drawer. He opens
the fridge, gets another beer, closes the fridge. He grabs
his plate with the other hand and walks out of the kitchen.
Cut to:
Richard is watching Fox News as he bites into his chicken.
He sees an Amber Alert sign in Fox's scrolling headline
news. He grabs his beer and take a sip.

He takes three big bites from the chicken and drops the
chicken bones on the plate. He licks his fingers. He pours
the remaining gravy over his mashed potatoes. He grabs the
fork to eat his mashed potatoes.


He glaces at the magazines that lay over his table. He
pushes two PLAYBOY magazines aside and picks up The Modern
Patriot. He leafs through it as he takes another sip of
beer. He looks at the window. He gets up and walks toward
the night vision scope.
Richard peeks into the scope and sees Lyla, below her
building, kissing and making out with a boy. Richard zooms
in on them. He takes a big gulp of beer.
Richard sees Lyla disengage herself from the boy quickly.
She turns and sees her brother come at her. He grabs her
forcefully by the arms and drags her into the building while
screaming at her.
Richard scans with his scope to another apartment and sees a
couple having sex in their living room couch. He reaches for
his beer bottle, takes a sip but it's empty. He heads to the
kitchen to get another beer.

We continue to see the couple having sex through the scope.
The woman unlocks herself from the man, gets up, takes the
man's hand, and they disappear into another room.
Cut to:
Richard, sipping his beer. He peeks into the scope. He sees
the couple's living room empty. He scans back to Lyla's
living room.

Richard sees Lyla's father and brother yelling at Lyla. Said
slams a book he's holding on the table next to the couch.
Lyla is crying on the couch. Lyla's brother takes off his
jacket and throws it down on the couch next to her. As he
starts to remove his belt, Lyla looks up at him with fiery
eyes and runs to her room.
Richard grabs the phone.
Hello. I'm not interested...Look I
told you before I'm not
interested, all right! Now stop
calling me or I'll report you!
      (slams the phone)
Fucking telemarketers.
Richard takes a sip of beer as he walks back to the window
and peeks through the scope.


Lyla's bedroom curtains are drawn entirely. Her room is lit.
A man's figure enters her room and holds up a long, thin

Lyla steps back.

Two other figures enter the room. The first figure steps
back out of Richard's POV.
One figure grabs Lyla by the shoulders and forces her to
down. Lyla pushes this figure away and gets up.

The figure grabs her and throws Lyla back on her bed.
Lyla is held down as one figure draws their hand quickly
back and forth, down and up several times.

Lyla's arms are reaching out, trying to push one of the
figures away.

CU Richard looks concerned.
Lyla gets up and one of the figures grabs her head from
behind as the other figure draws their hand back and forth
from her face twice.

Lyla gets up from the bed and runs out of her room.
Lyla is naked, wrapped in a white sheet. She's in tears. Her
face and arms are red.

CU Richard fidgeting his fingers against the scope.

Lyla's mother enters the living room and drags Lyla back
into the bedroom. Lyla resists by pulling back. Her mother
grabs both her arms and shoves her back into her room.
Richard looks troubled. He walks over to the phone and grabs
it. Sound of dial tone. He stares at it for a few seconds
and dials 911.



Officer Maloney, white, Irish, age 50. Maloney has a
walkie-talkie attached to his waist belt. On the opposite
side is his gun. He has a wireless ear piece. He's sitting
on a side chair, next to the couch. Richard sits on the
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Okay, so you saw her parents argue
with her. Then what?
Then I...uh...saw her being
slammed down on her bed and they
they started hitting her...and
she tried to get away several
times, but they wouldn't give up,
you know. They just kept at her.
Maloney's walkie talkie goes off.
                       OFFICER SMITH (OS)
Maloney, we're here. She's
bruised, all right.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
      (turns off speaker
Yeah, ok...uh...keep me posted.
Maloney looks around Richard's apartment. He sees the
posters, the magazines, the empty beer bottles.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
So you know this girl?
Who me? No...no...I mean -- I've
seen her around, you know...I
uh...I just mind my own business
here...get home, do my thing, you
know? But uh...she's...she's a
pretty girl, long brown hair.
Pretty, but uh...no...I don't know
                       OFFICER MALONEY
      (gets up)
Uh-huh. So you live alone here?


      (following him)
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Yeah, how long you been living
Uh...going on a year now...wife
got the house in the divorce.
You know...the decks are stacked
against us men in the courts. She
leaves me but she gets the house!
Go figure!
Maloney walks to window.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Yeah, I hear you.
      (points at scope
What's this here?
Uh...that...that, that's uh...my
uh...night scope. You know,
everyone needs a hobby.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
      (peeks into it)
Richard scratches his chin.
Maloney sees directly into Lyla's bedroom. Lyla looks
distraught and confused. A female officer and officer Smith,
a big, black man in his 40s, are talking to Lyla.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Pretty convenient little thing you
got here.
Yeah? How's that?


                       OFFICER MALONEY
Why don't you have a look for
Richard walks over to the scope and peeks into it. He sees
Lyla showing her arms to a female officer and and then
lifting up her legs on the bed. The officer inspects her
legs and takes a photograph.
Well, uh...
      (clears his throat)
I just use that for surveillance
you know...lotta thieves and
robberies lately so I keep my eyes
open...you know...for the good of
the community.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Yeah, I'm sure your neighbors feel
safe knowing you're around.
Maloney's pager goes off.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Maloney. What? John, John...I
can't...I can't hear you! What?
Call...call me back!
Richard grabs his pack of cigarettes from the table. He
bangs it on his palm a couple times. He takes a cigarette,
puts it in his mouth, grabs the Zippo lighter. He lights the
cigarette and takes a long drab before blowing out the
He offers one Maloney.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Nah, don't touch the stuff.
Yeah, trying to quit too.
Richard takes another long drab.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Okay, so you saw through...the
window...someone hitting this


                       OFFICER MALONEY
Did you see their faces? Are you
able to identify who did what?
No...well...yes...I mean...I -- I
know how these people are...you
know...I've been there.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
You've been there? What do you
mean you've been there?
I mean, I've been to that side of
the world. I fought for my country
in the Gulf War. I saw how these
women are treated...you know what
I mean...you know how those women
are treated...they...they're...you
know us Americans, we know how to
treat a woman right...oh yes sir,
we sure do. Those people over
there just got things all upside
down, you know? Everything about
them is wrong...
Maloney's walkie-talkie goes off.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Hang on. Maloney! Yeah...yeah I
hear you now, what's the...Yeah.
Uh-huh. Uh-huh. And the neighbors?
Uh-huh. So the bruises...Really.
Really? OKay. Okay, yeah, I'll
meet you down there in five.
Is she okay? Is the girl okay?
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Okay? Yeah, she's ok, just scared


      (shaking his head
       in disapproval)
I knew it...I knew it.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
...But not from her parents.
What do you mean?
                       OFFICER MALONEY
The girl was getting her arms and
bikini waxed by her mother and
                       OFFICER MALONEY
The bruises on her legs and arms
were from the pulling of the skin
over and over...what you thought
was them hitting her.
But I saw her resisting and
running from them?
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Well I guess she doesn't like pain
now, does she?
But I don't understand...I saw
them fighting?
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Well then, Mr. Holbrook, what you
saw is not really what you saw!
If I were you, I'd take that
little night scope of yours and
put it in a place where it won't
get you into trouble? Catch my


                       OFFICER SMITH (OS)
Jimmy, dispatch is calling. We
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Yeah, I'm set. I'll be down in a
Maloney grabs his writing board from Richard's living room
table and heads to the door.
                       OFFICER MALONEY
Good night Mr. Holbrook. And
uh...I hope you strongly consider
my advice.
You know...for the benefit of the
Richard shuts the door behind Maloney. He stands there for a
brief moment.
                       OFFICER MALONEY (OS)
      (to himself)
Fucking peeping toms.
Richard turns and stares at the window. He darts toward it.
He peeks into the scope. Lyla's bedroom lights go off.
Richard scans to the her living room. The lights are off.

Richard steps back and scratches his chin as he stares at
Lyla's bedroom. He looks at his watch. It's ten after ten.
He looks out at the building and sees a bedroom on the 8th
floor that's lit.

Richard peeks into his scope. He scans over to the bedroom.
He zooms in and sees an attractive black woman in silk-
white lingerie, sitting on her bed.
The woman walks over to the window. She reaches below and
grabs a pair of binoculars. She brings them to her face and
scans over to Richard's window. She brings them down
slightly and looks intently at Richard.


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