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The Lighthouse Club Hotel
by John Bennett (jb246424@muhlenberg.edu)

Rated: PG-13   Genre: Drama   User Review: *1/2

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.


A tired looking woman is walking down a cold and empty
street as the credits roll. The woman opens the door to her
apartment to find, unexpectedly, many of her friends and
family there.
Julia, please don't leave. We're
all here to help you
The door closes behind her. A title card comes up informing
us that the day is December 30th, 1999. We are taken into
the scene of the intervention.
      (with anguish)
I wish you all hadn't done this,
everything is fine
Do you have a job?
No, but--
Do you have any money?
Dad, listen--
Is anything going your way right
      (at a loss)
That's why we're here. We want to
start making things good for you
again. I want that for you. Alex
wants that for you, your friends
want that for you.


Julia, you haven't been yourself
since you got hooked. We all
haven't seen you in so long.
Remember those long days when we
would get up early and go into the
city and shop all day. Remember
how fun those days were? Since
you've had you're...problem, we
don't have days like that anymore.
We want to help you have those
days again. We know you can do it
As the friend begins talking, the camera pans along the
concerned faces of the friends before resting on Alex's. A
cut implies some time has passed.
Alex, come here
Yeah Jules?
You put this together, didn't you?
      (he pauses)
Yeah, I did.
Oh ALex, how could you do this to
Jules, you needed help. You still
need help
Alex, I know I got myself into a
mess, but I sure as hell was
planning on getting myself out of
it without any help.
You're still helping yourself. We
were all just...facilitating the
Oh, you bastard I just can't
believe you did this to me. We


                       JULIA (cont'd)
respect each other, how could you
do this?
I respect you enough that I'm
trying to do what's best for you.
Well from here on out, what's best
for me is for you to leave me
alone. Go back to all your lawyer
bullshit and before you know it,
I'll be doing fine. Better than
you even. And maybe then we can
start negotiations on being
brother and sister again. But
until then we on't speak, do you
      (At a loss)
Julia, I don't know what to
Before I go, here's your Christmas
present. Goodbye Alex.
She gets into a car and drives off as Alex calls after her.
Their father approaches Alex.
You were right to put this
together Alex. She;s mad now, but
she'll forgive you.
I don't know about this time...
Well, the important thing is that
she'll start getting the help she
Alex is silent, still staring off after the car. There is a
pause between the two.
Are you going to come back to D.C.
for New Years?


I don't think so dad, I'm gonna
spend a couple nights here. I have
a big case in New York next week
Worry about the case after New
Years Alex. We need you at home.
It was hard enough not having you
around for Christmas. Please come
I just can't. I'm behind on
research for the case as it is.
But all alone? On the last day of
the millennium?
It's just another cold day like
any other cold day. I'll be home
to ring in 2001. I promise.
I wish I could believe you. Things
would be easier if you were
around...Oh well. I'm going home
now. Happy New Year Alex.
Happy New Year, dad.
They hug. He gets in a car and leaves
Alex, now alone, walks along the streets of the town before
arriving at what appears to be a boardwalk. The faint sound
of waves informs us that this is a beach town. He opens the
Christmas present from his sister. It's a nice watch. There
is a note attached that reads "Maybe this will help you
schedule yourself some free time--Jules" We see the
boardwalk; it is entirely empty. Alex looks around
contemplatively. He hears a voice.
Hey, you!


Alex turns, somewhat startled, and looks around on the
deserted boardwalk. She is on a balcony of a hotel.
I'm up here! Do you wanna get a
A drink, do you want one? I made a
bet with the management here that
somebody would actually be walking
on the boardwalk tonight in spite
of the weather and that I'd ask
the first person I saw to have a
Are you buying?
Only two moderately priced rounds,
I'm a little broke
Ok, you take the first two rounds,
and I'll cover every round after
I'll be right down
Alex looks at the watch and note again as he waits. Adriana
is down shortly. She is beautiful in an earthy and wounded
sort of way. She has a dark scar that runs down her cheek.
I'm Adriana by the way
I'm Alex
Well it's nice to meet you Alex
It's nice to meet you too. Where
are we drinking?


There's a great dive bar about a
block inland. Let's go
The two are making their way to the bar
Is this the only place that was
One of the only places
This town really closes down in
the winter, doesn't it?
It would appear that way
I've never seen a town so deserted
The fact that it's the holiday
season helps. The few residents
there are all go to their
relatives' homes this week anyway
But it can't be this depressing in
the summer...
Don't worry, it is. Just in a
different sort of way. This is an
old, sad town. Vacationers are
starting to grow few and far
How anyone could end up here is a
mystery to me.
And yet here we are. How did you
end up here if I may ask?


I...eh...I came to see my sister.
She's been having a hard time.
You have a sister here? Maybe I
know her, what's her name?
Julia Vance
Do you know her?
No, I...don't recognize that name
Well, either way, I saw her and
I'm staying here until New Years
and then I'm going up to New York.
For what?
My job
What do you do?
I'm a malpractice attourney
You don't say?
What about you? Why are you at the
beach in the middle of winter?
Well...I came here in the summer
to think about some things, and
I'm not done thinking about them
yet, so I'm still here.


What do you need to think about?
      (with pause)
Personal matters
I see
They pause briefly. The two are clearly tired. Not just
physically tired after a long day, but emotionally tired
after tiring past experiences.
Are you going to be around for New
Yes, I am. I'm having a hard time
getting past the thought of living
in a whole new millennium.
It's just a night like any other
No, it's unchartered territory!
That's what scares me about it!
Never again will anyone live in a
year beginning with one, we're all
bounding recklessly into our
Well, chartered or unchartered
territory, how are we going to
spend the last few hours of these
1000 years beginning with a one?
Why don't we spend them together
and well-lit?


Sounds perfect, but before I get
anymore well-lit. I should make my
hotel arrangements. It's getting
pretty late.
Where were you thinking of
I figured something oceanfront
would be nice for the next few
Well, you don't have much choice
there. The Lighthouse Club Hotel
is the only open hotel on the
boardwalk. That's where I'm
Adriana brings Alex into the hotel lobby. It has old,
slightly decrepit Victorian architecture, but has a certain
warm charm. An older woman is behind the desk. Adriana
approaches her in recognition
Velma, I've brought you another
Well, that brings the total to
three. That's the most guests
we've had here on New Years Eve
since 1994! How many nights are
you here for?
Just two
Two nights it is. I'm assuming you
want a room that faces ocean-side?
He gives her a credit card, she looks at it


Ok Mr. Vance, I'm gonna give you
room 203 then. Let me find the
Oh Alex, that's not far from me!
I'm going to head back up to my
room, but I'll see you later.
Ok, sounds good.
She begins to ascend the old staircase. He calls after her
She, already halfway up he staircase, turns and looks at
him, smiling slightly
I'm glad we met.
She smiles warmly and sadly, and, without speaking, goes
back up the stairs
Here's the key
Thanks. So this is the only hotel
on the boardwalk that operates in
the off-season?
      (attending to some
       chores behind the
Sure is. That's my business model.
What I lose in slow summers I make
up for by being the only
ocean-front game in town for the
weary folks who pass through here
in the off season. I've had this
hotel for fifty two years and
we've never been closed. Somebody
always needs a place to stay where
they can hear the waves.
Is it alright if I come down to
the lobby to do some work?


Of course! I'll be up looking at
the books and making a cake for
tomorrow morning's continental
breakfast. That starts at 8:00 by
the way.
Ok, thanks.
Another young woman enters a darkened room. She is breathing
heavily. She paces her dark room before checking a suitcase.
She pulls out a big wad of cash and counts it and puts it
back. Some frilly white fabric can be seen at the corner of
the case. She shakily pulls out a big bottle of vodka. She
takes it out on the balcony where waves can be heard in the
background. She pours herself a shot before accidentally
dropping the bottle. It shatters; the woman begins to become
more panicky now. After a few seconds, there is a knock on
the door.
Who is it!?
I heard something break, I just
wanted to see if everything was OK
Helen checks the peephole to verify the voice, and then lets
Adriana in.
It was a bottle of vodka.
A whole bottle?
      (a little calmer,
       but still on edge)
That's right.
And it's just you here?


Packing for the war?
Never mind.
Could you help me clean all this
Sure thing. Do you have a broom or
a dustpan?
I'm afraid not.
Oh god. Well, I'll go get Velma to
get one out of the closet.
Thank you.
No problem, I'll be right back.
She leaves. Helen slowly approaches the mess, kneels beside
it, and begins to cry a little. When Adriana reenters, she
composes herself.
This should do the trick
Thank you for helping me. I really
appreciate it.
No problem. If you hold the
dustpan, I can sweep the glass up.
Is it just out on the porch?
Yes, I believe so.
Well, it could have been worse I
suppose. How did it break?


I...I dropped it.
How did you do that?
I was...I was panicing a bit
Panic and a full bottle of vodka,
huh? That's a pretty suspicious
Yes I imagine it is.
The two are now in the process of sweeping up the broken
glass and wiping up the vodka.
Should I be suspicious?
Please don't be. I've been having
a month more miserable then anyone
could imagine, I just need to be
around some nice people. You've
been nice so far and I'd like you
to stay that way.
      (with a lightly
       incredulous face
       that Helen
       doesn't see)
I'll try.
Thank you, I appreciate it. What
is your name by the way?
It's Adriana
It's nice to meet you Adriana. I'm
It's nice to meet you to Helen.
Even if it is under...suspicious


Adriana laughs a little to herself.
Oh, please don't joke like that.
I'm sorry. I'll stop.
      (after taking a
       deep breath)
Oh I never thought I'd be spending
a holiday night alone in a cold
hotel room on a frozen beach. It's
amazing how an entire life can
change so completely in just a
matter of days.
I understand
Has something like that ever
happened to you?
Something not unlike it has
I just feel like nothing can ever
be the same for me after this past
Adriana has begun to finish cleaning the mess up
Do you want to tell me what
      (considering it)
Well...no, no I can't. Not right
Does it have anything to do with
that big open briefcase of wads of
cash you have in there?
Helen, realizing that she has left the money out, storms
into the hotel room and packs it all up.


      (a little frantic)
You cannot tell anyone you saw
that, I mean it.
Don't worry. I agreed to be nice,
remember? That's all cleaned up
out there. I'm down the hall in
room 315 if you need anything
Thank you.
No problem. Good night.
Adriana leaves. Helen returns to the balcony and collapses
in a chair. She accidentally gets a small cut from a piece
of glass that wasn't cleaned up. She tiredly wraps her
finger and turns the lights out.
Alex is doing work for his case as Joe, a tall lanky
menacing looking man walks up to the desk.
Can I help you?
      (sliding some cash
       on the desk)
I'd like a room for the night.
Just for the night or for the
Just for the night for now. I'll
decide tomorrow whether I'm going
to stay for longer.
Do you want a room facing the


Alright, I'm putting you in 411.
Have a good night Mr...
Have a good night Mr. Prokovny.
Joe casually wanders away from the desk as Velma busies
herself and sees Alex immersed in his work.
      (to Alex)
I thought this place would be
totally empty.
      (looking up)
I said I thought this place would
be totally empty. I'm Joe by the
I'm Alex. And no, there are at
least four of us now.
Yeah, there's you, me, a young
lady, and I think I heard the
manager say that there was someone
That's a lot of people by
themselves for such a big night
coming up
Yeah, I suppose it is. But is it
such a big night really?
Most people say it is.


Well I don't buy it. I'll have the
same life, same job, same
responsibilities in 2000 that I
had in 1999.
What's your job?
I'm a malpractice attourney.
What an upstanding occupation.
Would you like a drink?
He pulls out a big flask
Yes please. I like to think it is.
What do you do?
It's hard to give an exact title
to what I do, but I like to think
of myself as a "professional
Is that what you put on your tax
Taxes aren't necessarily part of
the professional
What is part of your purview then?
I just do favors for others.
Things that they aren't entirely
willing or able to do themselves
What do you think of that job


To give you an honest answer I
might have to have another drink.
Be my guest!
He pours Alex another drink. Alex takes a sip.
To be perfectly honest it sounds a
little shady.
      (almost too
Alex, I appreciate you honesty.
But can helping those in need
really be considered shady?
And what is "shady" anyway? Many
things most people would see as
shady end up being the most noble
causes. The word shady itself
seems to fit its own definition.
That's an almost convincing way of
phrasing things.
Almost convincing?
I'm a lawyer pal, I have a finely
tuned sense for what counts as
convincing and what counts as
almost convincing.
      (pausing and
       menacingly at
I heard we might get a little snow


      (getting up)
I wouldn't mind getting a little
snow. It could make things seem a
little more cheery around here.
Alright Mr...Novotny was it?
Prokovny. And please, call me Joe.
Alright Joe, it's getting late and
I'm exhausted. I'm gonna hit the
Good night.
Alex ascends the stairs as Joe stares out at the water. Joe
speaks after Alex is gone.
Good night.
Alex is in bed. Papers are scattered about his room. He
hears a knock and sleepily rouses himself.
Who is it?
      (she opens the
       door slowly)
It's Adriana.
What time is it?
      (still sleepily)
What are you doing here?


I wanted to see you again.
Couldn't you have waited until
      (moving down next
       to him)
Oh, this is all so strange.
They look at each other for a long dark moment and then
kiss. There is a fade to black. The camera fades back in
with Alex staring at the ceiling and Adriana asleep beside
I had a case one time. I
represented two parents whose
kid's appendix ruptured. The
doctor didn't diagnosis it right
and once it ruptured it was too
late...God, they would just cry
and cry. And all because of an
appendix. We don't even use the
appendix for anything. It was such
a waste. It is such a waste.
      (still sleepily)
Why are you telling me this?
      (he pauses)
I don't know.
Fade to black


Velma is laying out the breakfast in the lobby as the sun
shines brightly but coldly through the lobby's several
ocean-front windows. Adriana comes down the stairs.
Good morning, Velma.
Oh good morning Adriana. How did
you sleep?
Very well, thank you. I'm the
first of the three to be down I
First of four. A man came after
you went up for the evening.
Oh really?
Yeah, he stayed up talking to your
friend for a while. Did you meet
the woman down the hall from you?
I did.
      (getting quieter)
What did you think?
She seemed very nervous to me.
That's the exact impression I got.
Could you do me a favor?
What is it?
Would you mind keeping an eye on
her for me? I have to run a few
errands and I don't know if I can
trust her.


Thank you. Breakfast will be ready
Helen descends the stairs next, clearly calmer than she was
the previous night, but also looking very exhausted
Good morning
Good morning
I wanted to apologize to you for
how I acted last night. I'm not
normally that nervous.
It's no problem. I'm glad I was
there to help you out.
I'm glad you were there too. It
mean a lot to me, it really did.
Any time
Velma reemerges with two mugs of coffee and two plates of
Here you go. How do you two want
your eggs?
I'll take scrambled
Can I have mine poached?
Sounds good. I'll be right back.
Velma returns to the kitchen. As Helen and Adriana resume
their conversation, Helen puts four or five large spoons of
sugar and a lot of creme in her coffee while Adriana just
takes a small amount of cream.


Shall we make a toast?
Over coffee?
I like to make toasts over any
shared food or beverage.
Very well, what shall we toast
Let's toast to both being alone on
New Year's Eve 1999 on an empty
boardwalk on a freezing beach.
They clink glasses pleasantly and sip the coffee. Adriana
takes a big gulp where Helen immediately pulls away in
protest of the coffee's temperature.
Do you have any New Year's
resolutions Helen?
Yes...to get away. To get as far
away from my consuming problematic
past as possible and to begin
again with a clean slate, tabula
I'm not going to lie to you, I am
in a bit of trouble. I can't tell
you exactly what kind of trouble,
but trouble all the same.
      (more nervously)
I'm leaving here very early
tomorrow morning. Should I find
myself in any


                       HELEN (cont'd)
more...trouble...today, could you
help me, protect me?
      (a little
       surprised, but
       also genuinely)
I'll...I'll try Helen
      (whispering in
Oh, thank you
Just as Helen says this, Velma reenters with the breakfast.
Here ya go ladies, one scrambled,
one poached.
Thank you Velma.
Would it be alright if I were to
take mine on the beach?
Out in the cold, alone?
If it's not too much trouble. I'll
bring the plates back to the
kitchen when I'm finished.
Suit yourself.
Thank you.
      (to Adriana)
I just need a little air. I'll be
back in. Thanks again.
Helen leaves with her food. Velma leans in to Adriana.
She underestimated how thin these
walls are. I heard your whole


I think she's harmless, Vel. She
just sounds like she's had a rough
Well keep an eye on her anyway.
As they have this brief exchange Alex descends the stairs.
Adriana lights up.
Good morning, Alex
You got up early.
What can I say, I'm a morning
      (She laughs a
This one time when I was staying
in Baltimore I...
What can I get you boys to eat?
I'll have two fried eggs and bacon
      (voice only, not
       down stairs yet)
I'll just have some toast and
coffee please
Adriana looks up in immediate fearful recognition at the
voice. Joe comes into view. The two share brief, flashing,
and furious glares of recognition. Alex notices this
exchange, but doesn't think anything of it.
Oh, Adriana, this is Joe. He got
here after you went up last night.
Joe approaches her as if they have just met even though
their faces inform us that they have obviously met before.
It's nice to meet you Adriana


      (barely concealing
       fear and anger)
It's...nice to meet you too
Sorry, I interrupted you, what
were you saying about Baltimore?
      (a little
Baltimore, you were talking about
      (knowingly, a tone
       he maintains for
       the rest of this
Oh, what part? I know Baltimore
pretty well.
It was Essex.
Ah, Essex. Is that to the East or
West of the city?
The East.
Oh, that's right. I'm sorry,
please continue.
      (after momentarily
       glaring at Joe,
       then returning to
I was in Baltimore and I was
staying with my Aunt Lucy. She
lives on a river, and I got up so
early one day that I finished all
the household stuff I was supposed
to take care of before she even
woke up. So I took her boat out
for a spin, and when she woke up
she thought someone stole the boat


                       ADRIANA (cont'd)
so she called the police.
Velma reenters with the food. She sets it down and goes
behind the desk in the lobby preparing to leave for an
      (laughing a little)
Did the police catch you?
Yeah, they did. I was taking the
boat out on the river when next
thing I know two police boats
flanked me.
Were you arrested?
They took me to the precinct, but
when Aunt Lucy found out it was me
all charges were dropped.
Did they add it to your record,
What record, what are you talking
Just asking!
No, they didn't add it to my
Alright everyone, I have to run a
few errands. I'm gonna trust you
with the hotel for awhile. There's
nothing here valuable enough to
steal anyway.
I'm going to go too. I want to
walk around the town a little.
Alex, will you come with me?


Sure, do you wanna come Joe?
      (just as Adriana
       begins to protest)
No, I'm going to stick around. I
have some business I need to take
care of.
The camera cuts to him pulling a manila envelope out of his
briefcase with a picture of Helen paper-clipped to it.
Alex, Adriana, and Velma all leave the hotel and go out onto
the boardwalk. The camera follows Velma as she splits away
from Alex and Adriana and makes her way to a tired and small
car. She drives through the nearly-deserted town to a
cemetery and marches to a certain grave as if its the
thousandth time she's done it. She lays a modest bouquet on
the grave.
Happy 2000 Albert, you old
bastard. Here's to a happy New
She makes her way sitting down beside the grave with much
huffing and puffing. She pulls out a flask and takes a
generous sip. At a closer distance, one can see that her
name, with her birth year and a blank space, is also on the
grave. After sitting there for a wistful moment, she
struggles back up, walks back to her car and drives away.
She proceeds to drive to an ordinary-looking office
Velma goes up a flight of steps and goes into an office,
where a man is sitting at his desk.
Mr. Monterey?
Ms. Baum?
That's right.


Come right in Ms. Baum, make
yourself at home.
Thank you. For seeing me on the
holiday Mr. Monterey.
It's no problem Ms. Baum, I was
planning on coming in today
briefly anyway.
Did you get a chance to look
through my file?
I did.
Ms. Baum, I'm afraid we can't
refinance the hotel.
I figured that would be the case.
And I guess I also can't take out
another mortgage?
It doesn't look like it.
      (letting this sink
       in for a moment)
So how much longer do I get to
keep it for?
Well, Ms. Baum, you and your
husband were very loyal and
consistent customers for a very
long time, so we're going to give
you one more summer season to try
and turn it around.


I see. Well, thank you Mr.
Monterey, I really do appreciate
You're welcome Ms. Baum. I'm sorry
we can't do more to help you out.
We all have to do what we have to
do Mr. Monterey, that's something
I learned a long time ago.
Alex and Adriana are wandering aimlessly through the streets
of the town, past other old hotels, tacky beach novelty
shops, homespun food stores and other closed beach
Oh my...
Is there anything wrong?
No...well...yes, I suppose there
What is it?
I'm just a little afraid.
Afraid of what?
Just afraid of it all. I don't
know where I want to go or what I
want to do. How do you think I
ended up here? I'm here because
it's cheap and I really don't have
any other place to be.


Where are you from, couldn't you
go back there?
I'm from Reading, Pennsylvania,
and no, I can't go back.
You don't have family or friends
I never had a family or a home in
the traditional sense of the
words. You know, I liked to think
of my home as school. I really
liked school and I really liked
teachers. But after school I'd go
back to a home where my parents
may or may not have been there, or
if they were there, sober. And the
lights may or may not have been on
depending on if the bill was
payed. I learned to be a mediocre
chef at a pretty young age.
And friends?
My friends are one night friends I
meet in bars and hotels and cheap
restaurants. And I like to get to
know them as best as possible
before I'm whisked away to meet
the next set of one night friends.
Can I ask you a personal question?
You might as well, you've been
cross-examining me for the past
five minutes Mr. Alex Vance
How did you get that scar?
I got it making some bad


                       ADRIANA (cont'd)
decisions, Alex, and I don't
regret it. I'm smarter now and I
think that's worth something...I
think its worth a lot actually.
Was that a satisfactory answer?
The prosecution rests
Thank you.
      (after a pause)
I am too
You are what too?
What do you have to be afraid of?
Your life has direction at least.
You have a career.
I'm afraid that's all there is for
me. I'm afraid for my family too.
Not wife and kids family, right?
Because if you cheated on a wife
with me I'd pack up and leave the
hotel right now.
No, I don't have a wife or kids.
But I have a mom who's not around
a lot, a dad who's trying to have
me around too much. And a sister
who's having a lot of problems of
her own.


Yeah, that's right. I tried to
help her out recently, and I can't
tell if it did more good then
harm. And you know what, I'm
scared of a new millennium too.
And I thought you said you didn't
believe in that stuff!
I don't actually believe that. I'm
a lawyer. I do my job better when
I tell myself to believe
something. And I wanted to believe
That doesn't seem like a healthy
way to approach things
What can I say? It works for me.
The two see a young woman walking in the street. As they get
closer Alex discovers that it's his sister, who recognizes
both Alex and Adriana.
Well here are two people I'd never
thought I'd see together. Hi
Hi Julia
You two know each other?
Adriana, you haven't told him what
you do for your hotel bills yet?
Julia, stop


And Alex, you didn't tell Adriana
about the little party you threw
for me?
Julia, I thought you were going
back to D.C.
And I thought you were going to
leave me alone. So Adriana, when
did you two meet?
Last night
So you two have known each other
for a whole twelve hours and I've
clearly not been a topic of
conversation. Adriana, because of
the drugs you sell to me at very
competitive prices Alex here had
to have a little intervention for
      (looking at
       Adriana in
Oh god, I thought you said you
didn't know her!
Alright, so I lied! We had just
met, and I was going to tell you
but, I just didn't think it
      (growing confused
       and angry)
God, I just can't believe this.
I'm sorry Alex, I didn't mean to
hurt you at all, it's just that...
Is that what you do for a living?
Is that what you're doing in this
pathetic town in the dead of


                       ALEX (cont'd)
winter? Selling drugs to
vulnerable people? That's just
pathetic Adriana.
Alex begins to double back and storms away from the two
Where are you going?
I don't know...back to the hotel.
Wait, listen!
He doesn't respond
Oh, shit. Shit, shit, shit.
I wouldn't worry about him
Adriana, he can be a prick.
You shut up! Your brother is a
nice guy, the first nice guy I had
met in a long time, and it wasn't
fair of you to say those things.
He really screwed me over last
night, Adriana.
It sounds like he was trying to
help you out to me! It sounds like
he was trying to pull you out of
this shitty place.
I wanted to get out of here on my
own terms. And besides, it sounds
like you're the one who wanted him
to whisk you away to bigger and
better things.
      (almost to herself)
Oh, Julia, I wish we didn't run
into you. I wish you had just left


                       ADRIANA (cont'd)
Well you don't have to worry about
me anymore personally or
professionally because I'm going
to New York tomorrow morning. I'm
starting new up there. I don't
need you and I don't need Alex. I
can do it myself.
As she says this, Adriana looks achingly and longingly in
the direction Alex left.
Helen is walking on the boardwalk. She is simultaneously
reading a book and looking in the windows of all the closed
shops. She walks past a corner that Joe is standing behind.
She doesn't see him at first. After she is a few feet in
front of him he comes up from behind her. And puts a hand on
her shoulder.
Hello Helen.
Helen screams and turns around. The expression on her face
is pure fear. She is at a loss for words for a while before
finally expressing complete thoughts.
You! How could you have...How did
you find me?
It's my job, Helen, it's my job!
And I'm very good at my job.
Helen, in a moment of fight or flight, does both. She gives
Joe a well aimed gut-punch and then runs away from him. He
is surprised by the force of the punch, but is easily able
to catch up to and stop her.
      (frantic, as she
       will remain for
       the rest of this
Let go of me, please let go of me!


Not so fast Helen, we have some
business to take care of!
      (maintaining an
       attitude of
       menacing glee)
Yes, business! Your former
husband-to-be told me that you
have a little bit of money that
belongs to him and his family. In
fact it's more than a little bit
of money, it's my understanding
that it's actually quite a lot of
money! How much was it again?
Stop, please stop!
How much was it, Helen? I heard it
was $50,000 in cash! That's a lot
of money for a girl to spend all
on her own!
I...I don't know what you're
talking about!
Helen, Helen, I understand you're
in a stressful situation but is
the "I don't know what you're
talking about" defense the best
you can come up with?
Oh, God, what do you want from me?
What I want is for you and the
briefcase full of money you have
stashed away in your hotel room to
come back with me.
Take the money, just the money. I
can pay you! I can make it worth
your while!


I'm afraid you were part of the
package. And I know you can't give
me nearly as much as your former
husband-to-be. Besides, Helen, I
have my loyalties to think of!
What kind of friend would I be if
I just sold my services to the
highest bidder?
      (almost to herself)
I was so careful, I was so quiet
about it. How did you find me?
I'm not going to bore you with the
details, but you left a bigger
paper trail than you thought you
did. Why did you do it Helen.
Getting cold feet on your wedding
day I can maybe understand, but
isn't stealing $50,000 from the
fiancÚ your about to jilt adding a
little bit too much insult to
      (a little defiant
Ah, but the game changes when the
marriage is more out of
convenience to one spouse than it
is out of love, doesn't it.
I was told that...
Shut up and let me finish. That
marriage would have been to keep
money between businesses. It's
like something they would do in
the middle ages. And it would have
been forever! I would have been
trapped! Do you have any idea how
long forever is? Longer than you
or I could ever imagine, and I
would have had to have lived that.
We're in a new millennium now and
I'm going to live like it is or
die trying.


But you're forgetting that we
still have few hours left where we
still share a millennium with the
folks in the middle ages! And even
when we won't be, I'm afraid I
would still need to bring you and
your suitcase back with me.
      (her confidence
       now deflated)
Oh Jesus
      (looking around)
I tell you what, how would you
like a chance of getting out of
What are you talking about?
See that ring toss game on the
boardwalk over there? I'll give
you three chances to make the toss
on the highest bottle up there. If
you make it, I'll claim I lost
track of you and give you a fair
24 head start in any direction of
your choosing.
Joe, with his hands on her shoulders, guides the silent and
resigned Helen over to the ring toss. She grimly picks up a
ring and makes a toss and misses. She tries this two more
times and misses twice more.
Aw, too bad Helen! Now let's go
back to the Hotel and celebrate
the New Year and get some rest. We
have a big day ahead of us
It's getting late now Alex has returned and is in his room.
Adriana is in the lobby. Joe and Helen walk in together,
under Adriana's watchful eye. Helen dejectedly walks up to
her room as Joe stays behind to talk with Adriana.


Joe, what's going on?
I have to escort this young lady
and some money that doesn't belong
to her back to the rightful
owners...It's an awful lot like
our last encounter, isn't Adriana?
Joe, listen to me. If that girl is
going through half of what I went
through when you had to track me
down, you should feel very sorry
for her.
I don't get payed to feel sorry
for people.
Joe, it's not about the money!
This is about being human. I don't
know what she did, but please,
leave her alone. Pretend she got
away and you couldn't find her.
Sorry, I'm being payed to bring
her back avec cash and that's
exactly what I'm going to do.
Having someone kicking and
screaming in the back seat is
gonna bring back old times
She slaps him squarely in the face. He isn't especially
      (quietly, but
Oh god, I hate you, I hate you,
you bastard. You're everything I
hate about people.
The only reason you hate me is
that you fucked up and I had to
clean up the mess, your mess. And
I had to clean it up in a way you


                       JOE (cont'd)
didn't find satisfactory.
Alex somberly descends the stairs unseen.
      (more fierce now)
It wasn't a mess you
son-of-a-bitch. I was trying to
get out of what I had to then to
make ends meet and because of you,
I'm still doing it now. I can't
have a decent life because of you!
      (now indicating
       the scar)
And because of you I can't even
have a decent face. God, I hope
you rot in hell.
You two know each other too?
Jesus, I guess when you're in a
town with just 10 fucking people
everyone's bound to everyone
sooner or later.
      (to Alex,
It's best if you stay out of this
Stay out of this? It seems a lot
to me like you're terrorizing the
two ladies staying in this hotel.
I'm warning you to stay out of
this, it's in your best interest.
I knew from the moment we first
met that there was something I
didn't like about you. It's easy
to be a big man when all your
dealing with are two helpless
young ladies.
      (getting angrier)
Watch it pal!


Or else what?
Joe pulls a gun on Alex, Adriana gasps a little and backs
The remainder of the scenes will be summarized in detail. At
this point, Joe, enraged by Alex's defiance, takes him at
gunpoint to a bar. There, they talk about Adriana and Helen
and what he plans to do with them. Meanwhile, in the same
bar, Velma is boozing with an old friend talking about the
hotel's golden age, and how those days are gone. Back to Joe
and Alex, the two leave the bar to head back to the hotel
Adriana tries to make a plan with Helen to escape. Adriana
takes the keys to an beach amusement park Velma keeps behind
the desk in the off-seaon. They plan on creating a
diversion, and leaving in the night. Joe and Alex return too
soon, however and intercept them. As things between the four
begin to escalate. Velma, fairly drunk, enters the lobby
like a dream and unlocks a cabinet containing champagne to
give to the four. The new year is rung in, and it has a
haunting, silencing effect on all characters. Eventually,
Joe notices the keys Adriana is trying to conceal. He, at
gunpoint, decides that the four will be spending the first
few hours of the new year at the deserted amusement park.
Joe, has everyone turn on the rides and lights with the keys
from Velma's desk. The four wander the amusement park
exhaustedly, all trying to reason with one another about the
lies, histories, and unkept promises between them. Alex and
Adriana get on the ferris wheel and talk out Adriana's
connection to both Joe and Julia. She apologizes to Alex and
Alex, recognizing her hopeless situation, forgives her.
While they are at the height of the second rotation of the
wheel, they hear a shot fired. They wait for the wheel to
get to the bottom and rush to the noise. Helen, who has been
hiding a gun, has shot Joe in the chest. Helen and Joe have
switched roles now, with Helen acting defiant and malicious
and Joe becoming a scared shell of his menacing self. Helen
grabs her money and disappears in the night. The police,
seeing the rides turned on, come to investigate where they
find the three remaining characters. Alex and Adriana,


defending the now-gone Helen, tell the police that the
gunman escaped. They are taken to the precinct for further
Alex and Adriana check out of the hotel. Velma informs them
that this will be the hotel's last season and that it will
close after summer. Adriana and Alex walk on the boardwalk.
Alex, having realized the night before that he loves
Adriana, invites her to come to New York with him. She says
that had he asked yesterday during the day, she would have
said yes. Now, however, she realizes that he, as a dedicated
lawyer, and she as a girl with a dubious past and no
reputable marketable skills, would not work out together.
She tells him she hopes they will meet in the future, gives
him a gentle kiss on the cheek, and says goodbye. She leaves
him alone on the cold boardwalk holding the watch his sister
gave him and looking out at the waves. The credits come up.


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From John Bradley Date 11/29/2012 *1/2
Instead of "is walking" put "walks". Try to eliminate the words "is", "starts", "begins", etc... In the second paragrapgh of your direction look up the rules on superimposition, you have it all wrong. Capitalize camera movements. Instead of "a pause" put "a beat" Character descriptions need work. Break up your direction more, espeacially at the end. 19 straight lines is way too long. Try to find natural breaks in the action. You're off to a good start, just read as much as you can on formatting rules.

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