WHAT DREAMS MAY COME (excerpt)
Based on the novel by Richard Matheson Screenplay by Ronald Bass
likely the Tan Revision: 10/6/97
98 HELL-INT. ANNIE'S HALLWAY-DAY 98
|CHRIS (calls out)|
No answer. No sound.
Hello? Your door is open.
Silence. He walks in. The hardwood floor is blistered and buckled, large frightening CRACKS run the length of the walls. Into the living room…
99 HELL-INT.LIVINGROOM-DAY 99
…the rugs are stained, the furniture hideously chipped and grimy, the mirror above the mantelpiece is shattered in a fine cobweb of refracting fragments. Through the yellowed glass door, we see the garden.
A figure kneeling by roses.
He is frozen now. Staring. He can only see her from behind. Watchher as she tends a flower bed of dying blossoms. And at last…
…he crosses the room. Quietly, slides open the glass door. But even this gentle sound causes her to...
100 HELL - EXT. ANNIE'S GARDEN - DAY 100
…WHIRL on her knees, gasping, startled. Her hair hangs untended, her face hollow, haunted. But she is still Annie.
Sorry, I sure didn't mean to scare y...
Who are you?
He has to shake off the disbelief at actually being with her. His longing to run to her. The shock of her suspicion and fear and, above all else, non-recognition. From somewhere, he finds a smile.
I'm your neighbor.
She squints. My ??
I bought the Gorman's place two months ago, I just moved in.
I never heard they sold their house.
Her hands clutch her garden tools, arms instinctively crossing her chest.
You're Annie Nielsen, yes? They told me all about y…
…like, ? What did they say?
His smile gets warmer, calmer. Against every emotion.
Let's see. You're a widow. A talented artist, work for a…museum, right?
Her wariness is childlike, exaggerated. How can this man know these things?
Mrs. Gorman admires your…
Looks to the flower bed. It breaks his heart just to see the condition of…
And Annie bites her lip. Glances down at them.
They were so handsome. But now… there's no water pressure in the neighb...
…there is at my house.
She looks up at him. As if he has spoken in a language she can't quite make out.
I could bring some water over.
The electricity is out, too. And the gas. And the telephone. Everything is cold, and I have to go to bed at nightfall, because I can't find any…candles…
All my utilities are working. So are everyone else's.
She blinks. A non-compute.
Don't you think it's odd that all your services are out, and you're the only one?
Other things are missing, too. All my clean clothes, and the books I want to read. Worst of all, some of my favorite paintings, the ones I have to work on…
You can come to my place, we'll call the phone company. And all the others.
I don't leave the house.
Said simply. As if a small detail.
Could I ask wh…
Annie SCREAMS, a blood-stopping shriek from her soul. He sees a huge TARANTULA crawling toward her over a nearby rock. As her scream CONTINUES, he goes to her, takes the garden trowel from her hand, and intercepts the path of the lumbering spider, scooping it up in the trowel. Her eyes wide, horrified…
They're now! Every !
He flings the tarantula through space, to disappear in the dense trees across the yard. Her panic eases. He crouches down near her now, not too close. Reaches to hand back the trowel, which she can't bring herself to touch. But when she looks to his eyes…
She still looks frightened. He nods, gently.
You're very welcome. You say your paintings are mis…
Most of my precious ones. The ones that… remind me.
He stays quiet. The slightest questioning in his eyes.
Remind me of my husband. And my children. That's why I never leave.
Because…they might return…?
And on this. Her eyes go blank. A curtain has fallen.
I hope that's true. With all my heart.
He waits. She's not even looking at him anymore. Suddenly ...
It's not, you know. Once you're dead, you disappear.
His eyes trying so to connect with hers. And so she looks down. At the hands in her lap.
My wife committed suicide. After my children died.
No response. No movement. He can't see her face.
She was…the loveliest person.
He leans ever so slightly closer.
Don't you think that's sad?
She draws a sharp breath. Her delicate jaw sets in what looks like anger. Very quiet with…
Don't you have to leave?
She still hasn't looked up.
I like it here, with you. But I'll leave, if you want me t…
But he doesn't move. Instead…
The last day I saw my wife. It was our anniversary. But not…
…I thought you were leaving.
…still quiet. But very firm. Very definite.
In a minute. I just thought…in case there was another spider…
Silence. She is still looking down, but her anger is evident.
…not a wedding anniversary. It was…a different kind of day. That no one else knows.
EXT.HOSPITAL GARDEN - DAY-FLASHBACK 101
Landscaped grounds of Annie's hospital. We see patients, strolling shakily with family or attendants. Some pushed in wheelchairs. The sunlight is warm. And over by a bed of tulips…
…a woman sits on the grass. In her hospital gown. Staring blankly at the flowers. A man approaches now. Kneels beside her. She doesn't look up, but we know she recognizes him. He speaks very quietly…
I need to talk to you today. But you don't have to talk back.
Just as well. She doesn't seem to hear him. He takes from his pocket... a slim envelope ...
This is an air ticket. One-way. For one person. For me.
He opens the envelope. He puts the ticket in her lap. Her eyes do not leave the tulips.
My hanging around isn't helping you. And it's killing me. So this… is kind of…D-Day.
And slowly, her eyes go to the ticket. Read it.
D for decision, I guess.
And her eyes come up to his. Questioning.
Oh. Her lips part...
That would be two D's, wouldn't it?
She watches his slow smile. The one that competes with the tears pooling in his eyes. He whispers ...
I stand corrected.
Her eyes moving over his face. Showing no expression of her own. His tear falls, and she looks at it curiously. He wipes it away.
See what happens? When you only say one thing in a month.
Staring at each other now. He doesn't know what to say. Hates himself for that.
Cindy called. She said everything's waiting for you. All the artists, curators, they'll wait to meet with you. When you're better.
Whatever interest Annie may have had in this conversation has vanished. She looks back to the tulips.
I told her that the museum…one of those meetings…was what kept you from…
Can he even finish the sentence?
…driving that day. And that going back would mean that you weren't sorry, and you weren't wrong, and would be…betraying your children.
Something flickers across Annie's eyes. Some spark of something. He's watching that…
She told me you were crazy. I told her she was dumb. And she hung up.
Annie turns. Slowly. To him.
What's true in our minds true. Whether other people know that or not.
She looks at him with curiosity. Like an object she'd never quite noticed before.
That's how I realized. I'm part of the problem. Not just because I remind you…
He shakes his head slowly. No, it's not that. It's…
…because I didn't join you. So I left you alone.
<< | ManualTOC | >>