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by A.R. Simmons (ablonderobin@att.net)

Rated: R   Genre: Comedy   User Review:

Short film - with plans for feature length development. (First 10 pages). Synopsis: August Burrows is a small time con artist who gets busted. Sentenced to a mental facility for evaluation Augusts' jig is up... or is it?

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.

August and Walter are entering the court building. They seem
I don't know August. It does'nt
look good. We drew Judge Nash,
she's known to be a bit hard nosed
if you know what I mean. You could
do some time,(Pause) but don't
worry we could get lucky.
August looks like someone just punched him in the stomach.
The courtroom is a small very functional court. August,
Walter and the Prosecutor are in their prospective places.
All rise for the Honorable Judge
Eleanor Nash.
Everyone does as instructed, as Judge Nash enters approaches
the bench and takes her seat.
                       JUDGE NASH
You may be seated. Okay Mr.
O'Neil, I see here your client has
pleaded not guilty by reason of
temporary insanity?
That's right your honor, we have
medical documentation that shows
my client....
Your honor, this is rediculous.
There is no such thing as
justifiable robbery!
      (clearing throat)
My client has been diagnosed by
expert doctors in the field.


Experts? This doctor recieved his
degree through the- (Quoting)
"Online Guide to the Psychology of
the Mind."
I have other ex....
      (beats gavel)
That's enough gentlemen!
Walter and the Prosecutor stand silent, adhering seriously
to the reprimand.
                       JUDGE NASH
I've read the testimony provided
that says your client has been
diagnosed with Peniaphobia. It
says further that your client
August Burrows has such a fear of
poverty that it has driven him to
acts of criminal behavior.
That is correct your honor.
Your honor if I may? (pause)Mr.
Burrows has a criminal history
documenting this kind of behavior.
His arrest record is as thick as a
phone book, which by the way, he
was charged just last year,
(Reading) for stealing the phone
books from peoples yards and then
trying to sell them back to the
owners, saying that it was a "new
policy of the phone company."
The Prosecutor looks directly at August, disgusted. August
diverts his eyes away.
My client has a disorder your
honor, His doctors state that
because of the lack of parental
guidance, the lack of love...


      (rolling his eyes)
Oh please...
...and the hardship he had endured
as a child his mental health has
been compromised in given
                       JUDGE NASH
Mr. Burrows, do you have anything
to say for yourself before this
court renders judgement?
Yes your honor. I hope that with a
doctors care and counseling, I can
be a...(thinking) healthy minded
citizen, individual... that can
contribute to society?
                       JUDGE NASH
Very good Mr. Burrows, that did'nt
even sound rehearsed. I tell you
what I am going to do. I am
committing you to a State Mental
Institution for a length of time
to be determined by the medical
staff there. You are to report to
the hospital by 8:00am sharp one
week from today. I want to make
sure you are getting the doctors
care you need to be a contributing
member of society. Oh, If for some
reason you don't show up Mr.
Burrows a warrant will be issued
and I will make it my mission to
make sure you spend the better
part of your life in Prison. Is
that understood?
Yes Ma'am.
                       JUDGE NASH
      (beats gavel)
Court is adjourned.
All rise while the Judge takes her leave. The bailiff
follows behind. The Prosecutor packs his briefcase with a
sly snicker on his face, then leaves the courtroom. August


is white and Walter seems unphased, they are left in the
courtroom alone.
Walter, what just happened? Am I
really going to some nut house?
Afraid so Buddy boy.
She said that I could be there
indefinitely... are you crazy? You
should be going there, not me,
you're the one who cooked up this
crazy scheme to begin with! And
besides, I saw "One Flew Over the
Cuckoo's Nest", I know what they
do to people in those places.
Don't worry, it'll be like day
camp. Just tell them what they
want to hear, they can't keep you
forever... can they?
YES, Walter... they can!
hmmm.... (looks at watch) Oh I
gotta go it's happy hour.
Walter immediately grabs his things and exits.
August is watching the trees reflection in the glass as
hevtravels towards his destination.
My father was a gambler he lost
the last dollar we had, according
to my mother. She finally got fed
up with it and left. I was 14 and
when she left she said: "Good luck
baby, you're gonna need it." So


                       AUGUST (cont'd)
from that moment on I had noone
but him. I followed him everywhere
he went, I wanted to make sure he
was'nt gonna ditch me like the
ole' lady did. When he realized he
could'nt shake me, he decided to
teach me the game and get some
benefit out having a rug-rat
around. We worked back alley dice
games, pool halls, and everywhere
in between. The old man had a
great three card Monty game but
Poker was where the money was. We
worked out a fix where I'd give
him signals by eye twitches or
scratching a particular body part.
It worked real well for a while
until a man by the name of "Reno"
caught on and got so mad that he
shot the old man. As he lay there
bleeding he told me to get out of
there and never look back. So
that's exactly what I did, I still
don't know if he made it or not...
I traveled around working one town
to the next, I picked up a few
tricks here and there and worked a
few angles the old man taught me--
until now. How did I get here you
ask? Well I guess it was in the
cards. You play the hand your
dealt, as dear old dad use to
say... but then again there's
always an angle.
A yellow cab pulls up to the curb outside of the Clinic. It
looks like an old run down hospital combined with a maximum
security Prison. There is noone around and everything seems
August is sitting inside the cab. He looks at his watch and
it is 7:55am.
                       CAB DRIVER
That'll be $13 bucks, pal.


August pulls some money from his pocket and hands it to the
driver, he grabs his bag and begins to exit the vehicle.
                       CAB DRIVER
So what is this place, man?
August sits in a chair in front of Dr. Larry's desk. Dr.
Larry is looking through his file assessing the records. His
face is wrinkled and he looks like he is in deep thought.
                       DR. LARRY
uh huh, uh huh, uh huh, hmmmmm.
oh, this is interesting, uh huh.
August tries to peek over the desk to see what the Dr. is
reading. The Dr. sees him and pulls the folder closer, and
smiles at August.
                       DR. LARRY
Well, August... it looks like we
have some work ahead of us, I
think it's time to make a game
What kind of work?
                       DR. LARRY
Well, we certainly don't mean a
chain gang...
Dr. Larry laughs out loud then stops and clears his throat
when he notices that August does not find this the least bit
                       DR. LARRY
Anyway, we have several different
types of therapy that we use here
at the clinic, I think the first
thing we should do is get you in
group, you and I will meet once a
week for a one on one to see how
you are progressing.


Dr. Larry rises and tries to escort August to the door.
Do you have any idea how long I'm
going to have to stay here?
                       DR. LARRY
Well son, I would'nt worry about
that right now, let's just
concentrate on keeping you in the
game and getting you better.
Dr. Larry gently pushes August out of the door, Nurse Flo is
standing in front of him, waiting... like a vulture.
I'm never getting out of here, am
                       NURSE FLO
Probably not.
The sound of a football game is coming from Dr. Larry's
office, Dr. Larry is cursing the TV.
GROUP (Bold white letters)
The group is seated except for Bill who always stands and
Nettie who is pacing back and forth between two chairs.
                       NURSE FLO
Nettie, take a seat.
I don't know which one. Which one
do I sit in?
                       NURSE FLO
Decide which one you want to sit
I don't know... I don't know!


                       NURSE FLO
Okay, Nettie, sit in the one on
the left.
Nettie relieved, sits in the chair on the left. She looks to
the chair on her right and slyly moves over and sits in it.
                       NURSE FLO
We have a new addition to the
group today. Everyone this is
August. Who would like to start
with the introduction?
Nettie raises her hand and lowers her hand, raises her hand
and lowers her hand, she is now back in the left seat. Noone
                       NURSE FLO
Alright then, we'll just start
from left to right. Binky?
Hi I'm Binky, we met already
because I'm uh... your roommate.
I'm here because of phobophobia,
which is not really a phobia per
say but a fear of phobias, which I
guess is a phobia but there's not
exactly a particular phobia that I
have and phobophobia is not a...
                       NURSE FLO
Very good Binky, Thank you. Next.
Binky gives Nurse Flo a hurt look.
I'm Will...
and I'm Bill.
                       WILL (& BILL)
      (in harmony)
We're brothers.
Will and Bill look at each other with contempt


I have Basophobia, which is fear
of standing, that's why I am in
this wheelchair, there's really
nothing wrong with my legs...
Except for the fact he can't stand
on them.
Shutup... Asshole!
You shutup, shorty!
                       NURSE FLO
Okay! That's enough, Bill please
I have Cathisophobia, fear of
sitting. (Gestures towards Will)
He gave it to me.
PAN - Nettie now sitting in the chair on the right.
Hi I'm Nettie. I have a fear of
making decisions, it's called
      (under his breath)
That's original.
Hola... Chico. I'm Cher... and I'm
an alcoholic.
                       NURSE FLO
Just kidding mijo... I have what
they call Andro.. Angi.. Ada,
anyway it's fear of el hombre.. uh
mens, but I don't think I got


                       NURSE FLO
How about you August? Would you
like to share?
Share what? With the group... ?
Oh, uhm... Peniaphobia.
The men in the group scoot away from August as if he has a
contagious disease they are afraid of.
That don't sound good, honey...
what is that? (Whispering) You
afraid of your penis or somthin?
No! no... It's fear of poverty.
(Pause) I love my... penis.
The men breath a sigh of relief.
                       NURSE FLO
Okay.... Well thanks for sharing
August. Today we're doing Counter
Conditioning. (Toward August) It's
a relaxation technique that helps
one cope with anxieties acqainted
with phobia disorders. Everybody
The unenthused group take to there feet. August tries to
follow the crowd as they begin stretching, following Flo's


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