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The Ripple Effect
by Glenn Mercer (gpmrcr@aol.com)

Rated: PG-13   Genre: Miscellaneous   User Review: **1/2
The Ripple Effect is a monster movie of criminal proportions when 2 bank robbers go back to the place they hid their stolen loot to find things aren't what they were and finding the missing money is the least of their worries when they come face to face with the Ripple Effect.


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.



THE RIPPLE EFFECT

FADE IN:

EXT. LAKESIDE - NIGHT
                                                            
Headlights illuminate a dark, desolate, and dreary lake. As
the light grows, the car responsible for its brightness
stops.

BILLY and BOBBY, both of the rough, gruff sort exit the car
with sweat on their brows and smiles on their faces.

Billy opens the back door to the car and pulls out two money
bags with the words FIRST NATIONAL written on them.
                                                            
                       BILLY (to Bobby)
Grab the trunk.
                                                            
Bobby grabs a trunk from the back seat.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Do you think they followed us?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Open it up.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Did we get away with it?
                                                            
Bobby unlatches the locks and opens the future resting place
of the stolen money.
                                                            
Billy places the canvas bags in the trunk, shuts it, and
latches it up.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Grab the shovel.
                                                            
Bobby puts the trunk down and grabs a shovel from the trunk.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Where's Buddy, do you think he got
lost?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Now dig a hole.
                                                            
Bobby starts to dig a hole right in front of where they're
standing.
                                                            
                       BILLY
By the tree.
                                                            

2.

Billy shakes his head in disbelief as Bobby repositions
himself by the tree and starts digging.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
You don't think he got caught do
you?
                                                            
                       BILLY
No.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
How do you know?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Cause here he comes.
                                                            
Billy motions to a man running towards them in the shadows,
stumbling and hobbling in their direction.
                                                            
Bobby stops digging and looks at the approaching figure.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Keep digging.
                                                            
Bobby returns to his digging state.

Bobby looks at the hole, picks up the trunk and tosses it
into the ground.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Fill it up.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Are you all right, is he okay
Billy.
                                                            
Bobby nervously refills the hole as their friend, partner
BUDDY comes to a slow halt in front of them.

The stocky, bloody, out of breath Buddy falls to the ground
at their feet.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Are you okay?
                                                            
The hole is now filled.
                                                            
                       BUDDY
I was hit in the leg, but I lost
'em.
                                                            

3.

                       BILLY
They followed you?
                                                            
                       BUDDY
Yeah but--
                                                            
                       BILLY
Get in the car Bobby.
                                                            
Bobby runs to the car and jumps in the driver side.
                                                            
Billy follows.
                                                            
                       BUDDY
What's the plan, where we goin'?
                                                            
Buddy clumsily follows along.

Billy turns around, with a gun in his hand, and shoots Buddy
dead.

Bobby's jaw drops in disbelief and his hands cover his eyes.

An old boat resides by the edge of the lake.

Billy drags Buddy's dead body to the boat and heaves his
corpse into it.

He then bends down and loads the boat with small boulders
that line the water's edge.

Billy proceeds to push the boat into the water, then the
wind born current sends it floating away from the shore.

Billy raises the gun into the air and points it toward the
boat, BANG, BANG, BANG - he unloads bullets into the hull of
the old row boat, causing it to sink into the blackness.
                                                            
Billy calmly walks to the car and gets in.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Drive.
                                                            
Tears run down Bobby's face.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
He was our friend!
                                                            
Billy puts the gun to Bobby's temple.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Drive!
                                                            

4.

The car pulls away and its headlights light up a sign, that
Billy and Bobby don't see, which reads: LAKE EXPANSION
PROJECT BEGINS ON OCTOBER 1ST.
                                                            
CUT TO:
                                                            
EXT: THE CENTER OF THE LAKE -- NIGHT
                                                            
CREDITS -- THE RIPPLE EFFECT
                                                            
A cloud of deep red blood slowly engulfs the entire lake.
                                                            
FADE TO:
                                                            
 
INT. BAITSHOP -- ONE YEAR LATER - DAY
                                                            
The door to the bait shop opens and RINGS the olde time bell
that's attached to the door frame.

Billy and Bobby enter.

They immediately head for the counter where JACK stands.
                                                            
                       JACK
Good mornin' fellas, what can I do
you for?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What can you do me for? What's
that supposed--
                                                            
                       BILLY
Sorry sir, don't mind my friend he
likes to joke, me I can't stand a
joke before I get my morning
coffee.
                                                            
Jack takes a few steps to his left where a coffee urn
resides.
                                                            
                       JACK
That's an easy enough request -
call me Jack.
                                                            
Jack hands two styrofoam cups of steaming energy their way.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Thank you sir, I'm Billy and this
here's Bobby.
                                                            
                       JACK
The first one's on the house.
                                                            

5.

                       BILLY
Much obliged, we're actually
looking to do a little fishing.
                                                            
                       JACK
You boys ain't from around here?
                                                            
                       BOBBY (defensively)
Why's that?
                                                            
                       BILLY
No, we're not sir - just passing
through and saw your beautiful
lake, thought we might be able to
trick some trout into our
stomachs.
                                                            
                       JACK
It's been a slow season ever since
they expanded that lake - the fish
just ain't bitin'.
                                                            
                       BOBBY (rudely)
Well, maybe we'll just try anyway!
                                                            
                       BILLY
Don't mind him Jack, his parents
didn't have no manners either.
                                                            
By this time Bobby is wandering the store looking at the
inventory.
                                                            
                       BILLY (cont'd)
Your sign says you rent boats?
                                                            
                       JACK
Sure do.
                                                            
                       BILLY
We'll need one, in fact we'll need
one or two of everything. Rods,
reels, bait - a little bit of
everything.
                                                            
Jack grabs some rods from the wall.
                                                            
                       JACK
These should do you fine.
                                                            
Jack continues to add to the pile of equipment on the
counter.
                                                            

6.

                       JACK (cont'd)
Now what are you boys thought on
bait.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Bait?
                                                            
                       JACK
Now I'm an old fashioned live bait
man myself but a lot of kids are
likin' them lures these days.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Lures?
                                                            
Jack digs into a bucket and scoops out a large clump of
blood worms.
                                                            
                       JACK
I agree artificial bait is just
too damn artificial if you ask me.
                                                            
He plops the container of blood worms down on the counter.
                                                            
                       JACK
What you have here is your blood
worm, comprised of 92 percent
blood - hence the name. People
have been using blood worms as
bait in this lake for generations
and the fish in this lake got used
to it and evolved to need it. You
can never introduce something new
into an ecosystem and expect no
repercussions. These'll catch
what you're lookin' for.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Look, a midget baseball bat!
                                                            
Bobby holds up what looks like a miniature baseball bat.
                                                            
                       JACK
That there is a fish club - we
used to get some big salmon in
this lake and before you can bring
'em in the boat you'd have to
whack 'em across the head a few
times.
                                                            
Billy grabs the club from Bobby's hand and throws it amongst
the pile.
                                                            

7.

                       JACK
You boys are feeling lucky? I
like that.
                                                            
Jack adds up the bill in his head by pointing to each item
and adding into the air.
                                                            
                       JACK
That'll be 80 - 6 - thirty five,
with the boat rental.
                                                            
Billy hands over a crisp hundred dollar bill.
                                                            
                       JACK
Not sure I can break that.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Keep it.
                                                            
Billy and Bobby grab their fishing gear and head toward the
door.
                                                            
                       JACK
Don't forget to grab a gas can off
the dock - you'll need it.
                                                            
 
EXT. DOCK - DAY
                                                            
Billy and Bobby are on the boat with all of the gear stowed.

Billy's behind the wheel and Bobby is untying the boat from
the dock.
                                                            
                       JACK (yelling)
Hey guys wait up.
                                                            
Jack runs his old body down the dock toward them.

Bobby grabs for the club.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Be cool!
                                                            
An out of breath Jack reaches them.
                                                            
                       JACK
I got yer change.
                                                            

8.

                       BILLY
You didn't have to.
                                                            
                       JACK
Don't be afraid of change boys -
you'll get what's comin' to you.
                                                            
Jack attempts to hand Billy the change but in the process of
the handoff, Jack fumbles and the change splatters all over
the dock falling in between the cracks and sinking into the
dark lake.
                                                            
                       JACK
Awe jeeze boys I'm sorry.
                                                            
                       BILLY
No worries Jack.
                                                            
                       JACK
Well here have some hats - on the
house.
                                                            
Jack hands over two black baseball caps that have - GOT
CRABS written on them in white letters on the front, and on
the back reads WELL YOU DIDN'T CATCH 'EM AT JACK'S BAIT
SHOP.
                                                            
 
EXT. LAKE - DAY
                                                            
The boat zips across the lake, behind the helm stands Billy
while Bobby sits and eats a candy bar - both wearing their
new GOT CRABS hats.
                                                            
                       BOBBY (with a mouthful of candybar)
Do you think he was wise to us?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Wise? No.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What's the plan again?
                                                            
                       BILLY
The plan is to find the trunk of
money remember?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
And how do you suppose we do that.
                                                            
                       BILLY
You see this right here?
                                                            

9.

He points to an instrument on the boat.
                                                            
                       BILLY (cont'd)
This is sonar and it's gonna take
us right to the sunken treasure.
                                                            
 
EXT. LAKE - DAY
                                                            
Billy kneels in front of the quiet engine as the boat floats
on the water.
                                                            
                       BILLY (screaming)
Goddamnit Bobby we're out of
fuckin' gas - you dumb son of a
bitch.
                                                            
                       BOBBY (defensively)
Me? What did I do?
                                                            
                       BILLY
It's what you didn't do you goofy,
dimwitted fuck. Remember the gas
can you were supposed to throw on
board?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Yeah?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Well you didn't.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Oh.
                                                            
                       BO
Oh? Oh? That's all you can say?
Now what the fuck are we supposed
to do?
                                                            
Billy throws a half-eaten stick of beef jerky at Bobby that
bounces off his face and onto his lap. Bobby picks it up
from his lap and starts eating it.
                                                            
                       BILLY
You goddamn, dumb pig.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Well you didn't think of it
either.
                                                            

10.

                       BILLY
I wasn't supposed to - that was
your job.
                                                            
A small boat BUZZES it's way to them. SAM waves to them.
                                                            
                       SAM (yelling from a distance)
Ahoy!
                                                            
                       BILLY
Be cool, I'll take care of this.
                                                            
Sam and his boat reaches them.
                                                            
                       SAM
Is everything all right?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Wish it were, we were in such a
hurry this morning to pull some
trout out of the lake that we left
the dock without extra gas.
                                                            
                       SAM
Heh, heh - it's not the first
time. I'll run back to the dock
and bring back a can. In the
meantime get those poles in the
water and catch some of them fish.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Will do, much obliged.
                                                            
The boat pulls away and speeds toward the shore.

Bobby grabs a fishing pole and a worm. He puts the worm
onto the hook and...
                                                            
                       BILLY
What are you doing?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
The man told us to get those poles
in the water.
                                                            
Billy shakes his head at Bobby.

Moments pass while Bobby fishes and Billy stares out at the
lake.

All of the sudden the tip of Bobby's fishing pole bends, he
gets excited.
                                                            

11.

                       BOBBY
I have a bite!
                                                            
Billy glances at the sonar and sees nothing on the monitor.
                                                            
                       BILLY
There's nothing there.
                                                            
But now the fish, or whatever it is, starts putting up a
fight as Bobby rigorously reels it in.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Get the net.
                                                            
                       BILLY
It's not a fish, it's probably a
tire or something.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
This ain't no tire, it's a fish -
a big fish. Get the net!
                                                            
Billy reluctantly grabs the net and humors Bobby.

Bobby continues to fight the massive thing on the end of the
line.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Maybe you should grab the club,
this could be one of those huge
fish that old dude was talking
about.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Maybe I should knock you upside
the head with it?
                                                            
Bobby nears the end of the line as he continues to reel in.

Billy sees it.
                                                            
                       BILLY
It is a fish!
                                                            
                       BOBBY
I told you.
                                                            
The fish is at the surface but is obviously dead. In fact
it is so dead that it has started to decompose.

Billy cuts the line with one sweep of a switchblade.
                                                            

12.

                       BOBBY
I don't get it, there was a fish
on the line, a live fish, it was
fighting.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Forget about it, we have more
important things to think about.
                                                            
 
EXT. DOCK TO JACK'S BAIT SHOP - DAY
                                                            
Jack lays on the dock and is reaching in the water trying to
find the money that was dropped.

Sam's boat pulls up to the dock.
                                                            
                       JACK
Hey there Sam, how we doin'?
                                                            
                       SAM
Just fine, but I can't say the
same for your young friends.
                                                            
                       JACK
Who's that?
                                                            
                       SAM
You're customers.
                                                            
Jack slowly brings his CREAKING bones up from the dock.
                                                            
                       JACK
They got themselves into a
predicament? Is my boat all
right?
                                                            
                       SAM
Nothing that severe, they ran
outta gas.
                                                            
                       JACK
I told 'em to grab a can.
                                                            
Jack walks to the end of the dock and picks up one of two
gas cans. The one he picks up appears to be very heavy, he
immediately puts it down. He picks up the next which is
apparently a lot lighter, he shakes it and there appears to
be only a little bit of gas at the bottom of the can.
                                                            
                       JACK
This should do it.
                                                            
Sam tries to take the can from Jack.
                                                            

13.

                       JACK (cont'd)
I got it, Sam.
                                                            
Jack places the near empty gas can into Sam's boat.
                                                            
                       SAM
Alright Jack, I'll get this right
out to them.
                                                            
Sam pulls away from the dock.
                                                            
 
EXT. LAKE - DAY
                                                            
                       BOBBY
I've got another one!
                                                            
Billy stares out at the lake, not paying attention to Bobby
and his recent catch.

Bobby pulls the fish to the surface to reveal another dead,
half decomposed fish.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
It's dead, another dead one -
that's the third one.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Or you keep catchin' the same one.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Nah this one's different, it's
smaller.
                                                            
                       BILLY
I don't think this thing's
workin'.
                                                            
Billy slaps the side of the sonar machine.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
You know what I was thinkin'?
                                                            
Billy continues to examine and fiddle with the sonar.
                                                            
                       BILLY
What's that?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Remember in the Book of
Revelations - the part that says
the sea will die?
                                                            

14.

                       BILLY
What about it?
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Maybe that's what's happenin', the
sea is dying.
                                                            
                       BILLY
We're on a lake.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
But still, isn't it a little
strange I'm catchin' these dead
fish. I was just thinkin'--
                                                            
                       BILLY
Do me a favor - don't think!
                                                            
 
EXT. DOCK OF JACK'S BAIT SHOP - DAY
                                                            
Jack is still trying to retrieve the lost money when a
gusting wind blows and the sky turns dark.
                                                            
                       JACK
There you are.
                                                            
He pulls up a handful of change and counts it.
                                                            
                       JACK
Now where are your friends?
                                                            
Jack puts his hand back into the water and reaches as far as
he can.
                                                            
                       JACK
Oww!
                                                            
He pulls his hand out of the water and examines it - he's
cut.
                                                            
                       JACK
Damn kids and their beer bottles.
                                                            
A drop of blood drips from his cut and into the water.

Jack puts his hand back into the water and resumes his
search.

A growing Ripple of water approaches him as he continues to
search for the money.

The Ripple continues to grow in size as it continues on its
path toward Jack.

15.


The Ripple which is now practically a wave is right upon
Jack and it sweeps up and over the dock, pulling him into
the water.

After a moment or two Jack pops and bobs out of the water
like a bouy that was submerged.
                                                            
                       JACK (yelling)
We had a deal!
                                                            
Jack is pulled back under the water where a struggle ensues
until a solitary bubble burp pops to the surface.
                                                            
 
EXT. LAKE - DAY
                                                            
Billy continues to mess with the sonar as Bobby stares at
the water.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What'll you do with your share of
the money?
                                                            
                       BILLY
Let's find it before we spend it,
huh?
                                                            
Bobby continues to stare at the lake when all of the sudden
a hundred dollar bill floats to the top.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
What the?
                                                            
Bobby reaches for it but it sinks before he can grab it.

He repositions himself just in time for the hundred dollar
bill to appear again. He tries to grab it again but again
it sinks out of his reach.
                                                            
                       BOBBY
Fuck!
                                                            
Billy slaps the side of the sonar and the screen becomes
clear, unveiling a black mass just about the size of the
trunk.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Shit, there it is!
                                                            
The hundred dollar bill reappears in the water and Bobby
jerks and grabs it. Just as he has his grasp on it, a force
pulls Bobby into the water causing Billy to jolt around to
see the commotion.
                                                            

16.

                       BILLY
Bobby!
                                                            
The water turns red and Bobby's skeletal system is spewed
from the lake and onto the boat as if it was filleted.
                                                            
                       BILLY (screaming)
Holy shit! Bobby!
                                                            
Billy grabs the club and frantically turns in all directions
to see what the hell is going on.
                                                            
                       BILLY
What the fuuuuck!
                                                            
Sam's boat is BUZZING it's way towards Billy.
                                                            
                       BILLY
Shit!
                                                            
The boat is nearing him.

Billy looks toward the boat, then at Bobby's bones, then at
the sonar, then back at the boat which is now very close to
him, then back at the sonar.

He jumps to his knees and shoves his hand into the water and
reaches and searches for the trunk.

The Ripple appears and heads toward Billy.

Sam's boat is closer.

Billy continues to search and feel for the trunk.

The Ripple gets larger and closer to Billy.

The boat slows down as it nears Billy's boat.

Billy looks back toward the boat and attempts one last feel
for the trunk.
                                                            
                       SAM
Ahoy!
                                                            
Sam immediately sees Bobby's skelton in the boat and stands
to get a closer look.
                                                            
                       SAM
What the?
                                                            
The Ripple is right upon Billy as he pulls his arm out of
the water and turns toward Sam.


17.

Billy cocks the club back and is about to hit Sam with it
when all of the sudden the Ripple slams up and across Sam's
boat pulling him into the water.

A scared shitless Billy finds himself in a familiar dance of
turning and searching for the monster.

The churned water begins to settle when a shower of Sam's
blood is spit from the water and rains upon Billy.

Now covered in blood and knowing he is next, Billy jumps
onto Sam's blood covered boat and into the drivers' seat.

He turns the key to start the engine but it won't turn over.

The Ripple reappears in the distance and starts its
onslaught toward Billy.

He continues to frantically start the engine, but no luck.
The Ripple gets closer.

Billy again attempts to start the engine.
                                                            
                       BILLY (screaming)
Fuck, start goddamnit, start.
                                                            
He turns to see that the Ripple is near, very near. The
engine starts and Billy pulls away just as the Ripple is
about to engulf him.

Billy races the boat toward the shore.

But unfortunately Sam's blood leaves a trail for the Ripple
to follow.

The shore is near as Billy has the boat in full throttle.
The Ripple is closing in on Billy, but Billy is going too
fast and is too near to the shore for the Ripple to catch
him.

A hundred feet to go, seventy five feet, fifty feet, twenty
five feet, fifteen feet to go when the engine stops dead.
                                                            
                       BILLY
No, not now!
                                                            
Billy turns and sees the Ripple is getting closer and he
immediately jumps in the water and swims toward the shore.

Ten feet to go, seven feet - the Ripple is ten feet from
Billy. Five feet for Billy to reach the shore, the Ripple
is seven feet from Billy. Three feet until Billy is home
free, the Ripple is five feet from Billy.

Billy is almost there - he's crawling the last few steps.
The Ripple is right on his heels.

His left foot is out of the water and just as the Ripple
grows in size as to suck Billy up he gets his right foot out
of the water and the Ripple diminishes and subsides and is
gone.

                                                            

18.

                       BILLY (screaming)
Yeeaaahhhh!!!! I beat you you
fucker! Yeeaaahhhh!!!!!!!!!!
                                                            
EXT: LAKESIDE -- CONTINUOUS
                                                            
An out of breath Billy pulls himself off the ground and
walks toward the bait shop.

Tired and stumbling, he comes across a sink and immediately
turns on the faucet and drinks directly from it.

The water cleans blood off his face and down the drain as he
engorges himself with water.

But again in haste Billy refuses to notice a sign that
reads: THE WATER FROM THIS SINK IS SUPPLIED FROM THE LAKE.

                                                            
CUT TO BLACK:
                                                            
BILLY SCREAMS.
                                                            


FADE OUT.


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From Zach Shevich Date 8/29/2005 **1/2
The names were a little annoying and the writing could have been a little clearer but it was a nice short.

From Joost van der Mandele Date 8/21/2005 **1/2
Why did you have to choose the names Billy, Buddy and Bobby? That is sooo confusing! Also, I'd cut the "get in the car"-sentence. It enables a shock-effect with the audience, which would be great. apart from that, I liked the speed/flow of the overall movie.

From Chris Jaramillo Date 8/17/2005 **1/2
It was an all right horror, make a great short I think.


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