Friday, September 17, 2004

Creative Lie


A sprawling mansion surrounded by the greenest lawns and lushest forestry imaginable. The front gate opens. A Rolls-Royce pulls up.


A luxurious foyer with marble surfaces and sweeping staircases.

COLIN, 17 and sweating like a maniac, emerges from heavy wooden double doors. He slams the doors behind him and holds them tightly shut. His eyes dart around the room.

The FRONT DOOR OPENS and in walks the tuxedoed MR. BANDERSNITCH, late 50s. He tosses his top hat onto a hat rack and sets aside his cane.

BANDERSNITCH: Why, hello, Colin.

Colin wipes the sweat from his brow. Tries to look natural.

COLIN: Mr. Bandersnitch. How lovely to see you. I finished mowing the lawn.

Bandersnitch counts out three crisp dollar bills. Presses them into Colin’s open palm.

BANDERSNITCH: Impressive, aren’t they?

COLIN: Aren’t what?

BANDERSNITCH: Didn’t you just emerge from my personal Ming vase showroom?

COLIN: Ming vase showroom?

BANDERSNITCH: Why, yes. I’m shocked you didn’t notice. It’s that room right behind you. Twenty priceless pieces from the early Ming Dynasty. Absolutely irreplaceable.

COLIN: Is that so?

BANDERSNITCH: Why, if anything were ever to happen to them I would probably kill myself. My remaining wealth would mean nothing.

COLIN: You must really like vases.

BANDERSNITCH: No one makes pottery like Chinamen. Come, I’ll show you.

COLIN: No, we can’t go in there now.


COLIN: I’m allergic to priceless artifacts. They give me hives.

BANDERSNITCH: Suck it up, boy. Caviar makes me dry heave but I’ll be damned if that makes me stop eating it.

Bandersnitch wraps an arm around Colin and leads him back to the double doors. Colin struggles to stop him.

COLIN: Actually, the room is full of poison.


COLIN: It’s being fumigated. I didn’t want to worry you. I spotted a deadly roach crawling under the door.

Bandersnitch backs away from the doors.

BANDERSNITCH: A deadly roach? What kind is that?

COLIN: The guy said it was Roachus Deadlius. That’s science for “roach.”

BANDERSNITCH: Ye Gods! And my Ming vases unprotected! I’ll hold my breath.

Bandersnitch puts an handkerchief over his mouth and runs for the door. Colin cuts him off.

COLIN: Don’t worry, they took them out.

BANDERSNITCH: Touched my vases! Those fools will hang for this. Times like these it’s good to have a judge in your pocket. Take that lesson to heart, boy.

Bandersnitch races around the foyer, looking in adjoining rooms.

BANDERSNITCH: Where did they put them? I’d better have a look at the showroom.

COLIN: Stop, stop. I didn’t want to tell you this.


COLIN: You can’t go in there right now. We’re planning a surprise party for you. If you walk in too soon they’ll blame me for spoiling it.


COLIN: Play along, won’t you?

BANDERSNITCH: But what of the vases? They can’t withstand the heavy vibrations of joyous revelry. This is a poor choice of venue.

COLIN: Still, you shouldn’t spoil the surprise.

BANDERSNITCH: Wait a second. Today is not my birthday.

COLIN: Surprise!

BANDERSNITCH: What the devil’s going on? Have you done something to my Ming vase collection?

Bandersnitch heads for the doors.

COLIN: I got your daughter pregnant.

Bandersnitch spins back to Colin.


COLIN: It was an accident. I don’t know how it happened. Probably it was the sex.

BANDERSNITCH: I’ll wring your neck, you rotten--but wait! This means my Ming vases are safe.

Bandersnitch throws open the showroom doors.

INSIDE, 20 empty pedestals and a floor littered with porcelain debris.

Bandersnitch’s jaw drops.

BANDERSNITCH: How did it happen?

COLIN: I was looking for a quiet place to practice my batting swing. I never could have foreseen this.

A baseball bat rolls out from behind one of the pedestals.

BANDERSNITCH: I’ll kill you!

Bandersnitch grabs Colin by the throat.

COLIN: Look on the bright side. Compared to your daughter being pregnant, this isn’t so bad, right?

Bandersnitch loosens his grip.

BANDERSNITCH: I suppose it is some small comfort that my daughter isn’t really pregnant.

COLIN: I didn’t say that.


cyshas said...

Cute. Are you using this for one of your short films or was this just for fun? The "Ye gods" exclamation seemed a bit out of normal people ever say that? Anyway that was an impressive bit of stalling the kid did.

lyan! said...

I like the name Bandersnitch. It reeks of old kootness. But i don't necessarily like the sex bit at the very end, though I guess it does tie back to the initial usage, but i mean it wasn't like it was an early joke to need to come full circle... meh, i guess i like it still. I do like the bat rolling out from the rubble, but only when i think of the whole act as a cheap add-on that looks way fake. As if the bat had been rolling around the house all that time. Hilarious! as long as the credits play with a track of Dennis-the-Menace-like whistling and the bat spinning down the hallways.

Kevin said...

Kenny, are you aware that they're filming the Herbie remake at UCLA? I'm not sure what scenes call for a College background, unless pink sandstone sets off Lindsay Lohan's boobs.

Zack said...

What does "sets off" mean in a mammary context? Sets them off like dominos? Sets them off like bombs?

Kenny said...

I was not aware of this. Lohan plays a recent college grad in the film, and I've read the script, and there are no college scenes I can remember. Maybe they're aging the character down to suit her?

Tell me everything you know about this.

Kevin said...

All I know is that they were filming around Franz Hall, and that a stage hand stared blatantly at my girlfriend. (I was not there. I heard about this later.)

Zack: to set off boobs is to use scenery in a way that suggests they are welcoming, friendly boobs that are to be enjoyed by everyone in the audience. A college campus accomplishes this, as would a neighborhood baseball game. A crack house would not.

Kevin said...

I think the obvious scene is as follows:

(While title credits are rolling):
LOHAN: I can't believe I graduated from University! (jiggle)
PARENT FIGURE: Congratulations Lindsay! On your degree on how cars are mechanizing and impersonalizing human society.
LOHAN: Yes, nothing will ever change my mind on this important social topic. (jiggle). Even if there are many future situations directly opposing my beliefs.
PARENT FIGURE: Ironically, we have gotten you a VW Beetle for Graduation!
LOHAN: Oh Parent! You should not have. (Walks past scenic UCLA buildings.) (jiggle)
PARENT FIGURE: Oh! Tragic heart attack! Accept my gift, Lindsay.. as a way of remembering me. Regardless of how it creates a conflict with your beliefs.
LOHAN: I will Parent... I will.

TITLE rolls: Herbie the Love Bug 2005, as camera pans to unassuming VW Beetle.

Zack said...

Okay, but why does "set off" mean this? Is it related? Did camera/movie people want to draw a parallel with explosive devices?