Wisdom

by deerinthexenonarclights

This is the first draft of a short film script that i’m currently working on; it’s based on a short story from Ethan Coen’s collection Gates of Eden. Enjoy, and feel free to comment as whether or not you do.

 

INT. BOXING RING – FIRST ROUND.

DING! IRV reaches over the ropes to tap his fighter, JOEY,
on the shoulder, half shoving him out into the ring.

In the far corner his opposition shuffles in, keeping his
head low and bobbing his body back and forth.

JOEY (V.O.)
Look at him, would ya? jiggling
like that when he is well out of
reach. It’s what all lousy fighters
do, just to show that they know the
moves.

As they approach one another the opponent swings suddenly
with his right hitting JOEY on the face. He follows through
with his left and JOEY stares straight into the glove as it
glides towards his face.

JOEY (V.O.)
It hit me, I was so surprised by
that right that I couldn’t quite
duck the left, but at least I’d
seen it coming. That’s somethin’,
that’s something all right.

He swings again with the right, hitting and repeating a
couple of times in a thip-thip rhythm.

JOEY (V.O.)
Jesus! He’s getting me in a hole. I
gotta-
(Beat)
We’ve gotta get this fight started.

While JOEY is thinking this the opposing fighter continues
to hit him.

JOEY (V.O.)
Lefts, rights, that’s pretty much
his whole repertoire. He’s a pretty
cliche fighter, pretty formul-

A long right jab smashs JOEY in the jaw.

JOEY (V.O.)
Wait a minute! This doesn’t seem
fair, all this hitting when I aint
set.

IRV
Hands up, Joey!

JOEY thrusts his hips out and throws his hands back for
balance as the blows have left him leaning on an awkward
angle.

JOEY (V.O.)
Woah, woah, what is this? The damn
canvas is about to swerve out from
under me.

The fighter lands a hard one in JOEY’s gut, bending him
over.

JOEY (V.O.)
I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe
and that kind of throws my whole
fight plan into a coked hat,
relyin’ as it does on breathing.

JOEY collapses.

INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST FIGHT

IRV and JOEY are gathered in the locker room. IRV unwraps
JOEY’s fists, raising an eyebrow at the pristine condition
of the gloves.

IRV
One bad fight, kid. You’ll bounce
back. You’re young! You’re a baby
for chrissakes and it’s just one
fight.

JOEY
I’m not sure Irv. ‘Fight’ implies
an exchange of blows.

IRV
That’s good kid, you’ve got a sense
of humour. And you’re educated;
just listen to ya talk, will ya?
(Beat)
What did I tell ya, kid? Did I tell
ya that fightin’ is a mental game?
Being mentally on the ball – you
got that. You got a leg up there on
these other bums.
(Beat)
Now this fight-

JOEY
This beating.

IRV
Heh-heh. This fight-

JOEY
No really, it was a beating.

IRV
Heh, heh. Okay, this beaten, kid.
You know what the problem was?

JOEY
Obviously not. Tell me.

IRV
You were thinkin’ too much. I mean,
he’s there, he’s hittin ya, ya
can’t think about this, Joey, it
takes too long.

JOEY
I thought you said Fighting was a
mental game?

IRV
In a sense, yes. But primarily, no.
Primarily you gotta hit the guy.

JOEY
Uh-huh

IRV
And that’s really where he beat ya,
Joey.

JOEY
Uh-huh.

IRV
With the hittin’.

JOEY
Right.

JOEY lays down on the table and IRV gives him a patch-up and
a rub down.

IRV
But this – I reiterate this, Kid –
not to feel bad. it’s just one
fight.

JOEY
Beating.

IRV
Beaten. ‘Cause I don’t care who –
Joe Louis, even Joe Louis had the
occasional bad fff- beaten, kid.
You know, he lost too.

JOEY
Look Irv, I’m no boxing historian,
but I believe even in the course of
losing a fight, Joe Louis would
sometimes hit the other guy.

IRV
May be, kid. I too am not a
historian. But they still went down
as L’s, didn’t they, kiddo?

JOEY
At least they went down as fights.

INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST SHOWER

JOEY is alone in the locker room, a towel wrapped around his
waist, water dripping from his hair. He walks tenderly
towards his locker, his bruised body straining from the
motion.

BENNY (O.S.)
Ah, look, it’s bagadonuts. Look at
ya, ya fuckin’ bagadonuts, you’re a
fucking bagadonuts, fuckin look at
ya.

A man walks out from the other side of the room, shaking his
head.

JOEY
Have we met?

BENNY
Have we met? Have we met? Ya fuck
ya, no we aint met ya fuckin’
bagadonuts. Benny. I’m a friend of
Marty’s. I says to-

JOEY
Oh, how is Marty?

BENNY
Shut the fuck up. I says to marty,
look I need someone for a job,
someone tough but with a touch, you
know, nice, not a fuckin jerk.
Don’t need no skills, but not a
jerk.

Benny wanders the room, circling Joey, poking at every
object he encounters.

BENNY
So Marty tells me he’s got this
nephew Joey who’s ‘looking for
himself’.

Benny head starts shaking, then his body. It looks like a
stroke. His mouth falls open and emits the sound of a
garbage disposal – larrlarrlarr. He is laughing.

BENNY
‘Lookin for himself’!
(Beat)
Course he didn’t tell me the reason
you was lookin’ for yaself was
’cause yas a fuckin’ bagadonuts.
Larrlarrlarr. But who gives a shit?
I don’t need no one fought.

JOEY
Uh-huh. Well what do you –

BENNY
Shut the fuck up. I got a personal
situation see. I got this wife here
fuckin’ someone else. His dick, her
pussy. Woom-pah woom-pah woom-pah.
Do I gotta draw you an
illustration?

JOEY
Uh, no.

BENNY

No. Course not. We’re adults. Don’t mean we gotta do no
adultary though, huh?

JOEY
Uh-huh

BENNY
Huh?

JOEY
Uh, no.

BENNY
Fuck no. Not in my fuckin’ book.
Not in my fuckin’ wife.
(Beat)
So ya see it’s delicate. My wife
gettin’ bangarinoed by a buisness
associate. Woom-pah woom-pah
woom-pah. And I bet she screams
like a fuckin’ chinamen at the
track.

BENNY stares silently off into the distance. JOEY glances
around the room, possibly eyeing the exits.

BENNY
Well what’s the diff? So I got a
divorce action, which would be
helped innumerably by some proof a
all this. This is why i’m seekin’
someone, an individual, a person a
who ‘aint a jerk. Huh?

JOEY
Uh-huh.

BENNY
Huh?

JOEY moves his mouth like a fish, failing to grip on any
words. BENNY belches, frowns then drifts his gaze away
around the room, as if wondering who belched. He whips his
eyes back to JOEY and his jaw drops open

BENNY
Larrlarrlarr. Yarl right, kid.
You’ll do. Fuckin’ Bagadonuts, but
you’ll do.
(Beat)
Pictures, ok? There’s five hundred
bucks in it for ya.

BENNY’s face then adopts a grotesquely strained expression,
attempting to mime sex.

BENNY
And be sure to get their faces.
Larrlarrlarr.

BENNY’s face again adopts a grotesquely strained expression,
only this time it is because he has started to weep.

INT. DINER – THE NEXT MORNING

JOEY groans and collapses into a booth, waiving away the
waitress with his hand and instantly regretting the
exercion.

JOEY (V.O.)
It wasn’t a very attractive
proposition so I asked for a day to
think it over, but when I weighed
my future there wasn’t much to
throw onto the boxing side of the
scales: I could promote myself as
‘The Human Speedbag’, I could go
for the world record in Blows
Absorbed, I could adopt a moniker
like Harold ‘Happy’ Landings and
rent out advertising space on the
soles of my shoes but I certainly
couldn’t win a match.
(Beat)
I called Benny and told him I was
in, he told me to meet him here.

JOEY slurps up some of his watery coffee and quickly sculps
down the complimentary donut, looking about nervously as he
does, afraid BENNY might see but the man doesn’t enter until
the last bite is deep in his throat.

BENNY walks over to the table, nudges JOEY’s coffee cup,
crinkles the left side of his face and remains standing. He
pulls out an old NIKON camera and a hundred dollar bill and
places them on the table.

BENNY
It’s happnen today, kid, and soon,
real soon. Gonna be a little
afternoon delight.

JOEY
How do you-

BENNY
They go to the Valley View Motel.

JOEY
You already know where they go?

BENNY
Yeah, I had a private investigator
follow her and establish the
whatnot.

JOEY
Well – why didn’t he take the
pictures?

BENNY
Money, kid. What’s widdese
questions? He’s expensive. I figure
once he gets things figuered out,
any schmuck can take the pictures.
(beat)
Widall due respect.

JOEY
Uh-huh. Yeah. I guess it will be
easy enough to get pictures of ’em
going in the uh, the motel room.
Wouldn’t that be enough to prove
that they’re, uh…

BENNY
Whuddya sayin’?

JOEY
Well how am I suppsoed to get
pictures of them actually-

BENNY
You gotta get ’em doin’ it. Faces
remember. We had a deal.

JOEY
I know but, but i’m not sure I-

BENNY
THIS AINT A FUCKIN NEGOTIATION! I
WANT PICTURES OF ‘EM DOIN’ IT! I
WANNA RUB LOU ARGO’S FACE IN HIS
OWN SMELLY SHIT!

JOEY
Okay, Mr. Benedeck.

BENNY
YOU HEAR ME?

JOEY
Yeah-

BENNY
HIS OWN SMELLY SHIT!

JOEY
I hear you, Mr. Benedeck.

BENNY stands there panting, suddenly his jowls quiver, his
eyes roll back in his head and he clenches his fist.

BENNY
YARGGGHH! THAT FUCKIN’ FUCKIN’ FUCK
LOU ARGO! NNRRNPHH!

BENNY frowns and loosens his shoulders then looks around the
Diner as if looking to see who has caused such a ruckus. He
nudges JOEY’s coffee again, tilts his head then turns and
leaves.

INT. JOEY’S CAR. VALLEY VIEW PARKING LOT – AFTERNOON

Joey sits staring  through the windscreen. The hotel sign
flickers, only four letters remaining solidly lit; ‘LEVE’.
He rolls a cigarette, lights it and leans back into his
chair, looking out towards the hotel.

JOEY
The ‘Valley View’. Huh.

He looks out to the left of the hotel, there is a mountain.
He looks to the right, the same.

JOEY
Only it’s in the valley, not above
it, so it ain’t got no view.

He cracked himself up. A maroon Cadillac pulls into the
parking lot and a woman steps out of the passenger side,
wearing knee length fur over tight pants and a halter top.

JOEY
The dame.

She wriggles down the walkway uncomfortably, as if unable to
properly extend her legs. She holds both her hands in the
air, level with her head, as if for balance. On her left
hangs a gaudy green bag that slaps against her side with
each step. Joey snaps a photo.

The car parks and turns silent. A man emerges from the
drivers door. Fiftyish. LOU ARGO.

JOEY
The Mark.

Joey snaps a photo. They find their room and enter,Joey
snapping all the while. When they’re gone he cycles through
the pictures, half of them are obscured by the smoke from
his cigarette, which is now beginning to fill the car. He
throws open the door and coughs.

JOEY
Plan B.

Joey begins walking towards the hotel, the camera holstered
by his side. He’s got a new kind of swagger.

JOEY (V.O.)
Ok, I’ll give him a few minutes to
get warmed up, to get started and
then give the knob a try. If it
turns I lunge in, take a few
pictures and sprint.
(Beat)
Lou won’t chase me, not naked he
won’t, not without shoes he won’t,
and by the time he’s all attired
i’ll be outta here.
(Beat)
But what if it doesn’t turn? I’ll
give that door the shoulder that’s
what.

Joey rolls his left arm around its socket.

JOEY (V.O.)
And if that doesn’t work then…
(beat)
Hah, I’m in luck.

Joey stops by the window, the leather curtain has curled at
the edge, allowing him to look in. He crouchees down and
places his face against the glass, readying the camera in
his hands. The sign sparks loudly as a globe blows – only
two letters now shine, ‘EW’.

MAID (O.S)
What you doin’?

A MAID is standing in the doorway of the next room down, a
trolley in front of her.

MAID
That’s a private motel room. What
you doin’.

JOEY
It’s ok I – I do this
professionally.

MAID
Do what now? That’s a private hotel
room.

JOEY
Noones gonna know. I’m not
disturbing anyone. Here

Joey tilts his wallet towards himself, hiding its contents
from the maid, then takes a twenty dollar bill and hands it
to her. She takes it and folds it into her pocket.

MAID
Well… Check with Mr.Curtis.

JOEY
Who’s Mr. Curtis?

MAID
In the office.

JOEY
But what if Mr.Curtis says no dice?

MAID
I can’t help that.

JOEY
Then what about the twenty?

MAID
I can’t help that.

JOEY
But why does Mr.Curtis need to
know?

MAID
He the manager.

JOEY
But if he’s the one who decides
then how come you get a twenty?

MAID
That’s a private hotel room.

JOEY
I know, but-

MAID
Are you givin’ me the sass?

JOEY
No, not at all I just-

MAID
Go check with Mr. Curtis.

INT. VALLEY VIEW MANAGER’S OFFICE – AFTERNOON

A man sits behind a counter watching baseball on a small
Black and White TV. He is bald. He has a tube taped to his
upper lip that then enters his nostril.

JOEY
Mr.Curtis?
(Beat)
I uh, I’ve been hired to gather
evidence, uh, in a certain official
court case, involving a certain
party who are, uh, certainly in one
of your rooms.
(Beat)
So, I’ve got to just take a few
pictures, which is perfectly legal
of course, but the maid suggested
that I get your okay.
(Beat)
Of course I don’t want to put you
out; if twenty dollars would make
that alright for you then I can
certainly provide that.

MR. CURTIS raises a small metallic tube to his throat.

MR.CURTIS
GOKAY

JOEY reaches into his wallet and pulls out the only
remaining note.

JOEY
Um… Do you have any change of a
fifty?

MR. CURTIS takes the bill, sticks it in his pocket and
swivels back to the ball game. Silence.

JOEY
That was, uh, that was a fifty.
(Beat)
Sir, could I get thirty dollars
back?

MR.CURTIS raises the tube.

MR.CURTIS
GUCK YOU

JOEY
But- That was a fifty, sir.

MR.CURTIS
GUCK OFF, GYOU GLITTLE GASSHOLE

EXT. THE VALLEY VIEW PARKING LOT – AFTERNOON

A gray woolen figure emerges from behind the trunk of Joey’s
car, it is him under a moving blanket. He trundles back
towards the room muttering obscenities to himself as he
goes. When close these begin to merge with those coming from
within the room. They’re at it. Joey kneels down before the
window, blanket shadowing his face.

JOEY
Missionary position, huh. A cliche
sure, but a classic.

We see the grey blur against the wall, it is making shutter
sounds.

THE DAME (O.S)
Lou!

LOU ARGO (O.S)
Oh yeah!

THE DAME (O.S)
Lou! Oh, sweet baby Lou!

LOU ARGO (O.S)
Ahhh! Benny! Benny Benedeck!

THE DAME (O.S)
Lou! Lou! Lou!

LOU ARGO (O.S)
I’m doin this to you, Benny!

THE DAME (O.S)
Lou?

LOU ARGO (O.S)
I’m fuckin’ you Benny Benedeck!

THE DAME (O.S)
Ahh! Lou! Lou the Window!

LOU ARGO (O.S)
This is for you, Benny! Feel this
you prick!

THE DAME (O.S)
No, Lou!

LOU ARGO (O.S)
Ahhh! Yes!

THE DAME (O.S)
Lou, No! There’s someone at the
window!

The blur starts to shuffle and stand when it is smashed down
by something off screen. It rises and is smashed down again.
Blows continue to fall as it struggles on the ground. The
door opens. A naked LOU ARGO kneels down and tears off the
blanket as THE MAID continues to swing her vaccuum cleaner
tube at JOEY, the tube waggling behind.

LOU ARGO
You…Fuckin’…Punk!

THE MAID
I came as soon as I heard  you
bein’ disturbed Mistuh Argo!

LOU ARGO tears at the camera cord round JOEY’s neck causing
the bulky device to smash into his face.

THE MAID
He’s a Rascal! He’s a little
peepin’ tom, he is!

LOU ARGO grabs at the cord again, planting a foot on JOEY’s
back for leverage. As the Camera smashes JOEY in the face
the second time the cord breaks. LOU begins whipping him
with it. JOEY passes out. MR. CURTIS watches on from the
office doorway, arms folded.

INT. DINER – THE NEXT MORNING

JOEY slumps forward on a stool, his body covered in bruises
and bandages.

BENNY
Ah f’Chrissakes. F’Jesus fuckin
Jesus. Ah, ya dumb fuckin’
bagadonuts.

BENNY sits down at the booth.

BENNY
So you’re tellin’ me that I can’t
count on you for this then?

JOEY shrugs, then winces from the motion.

BENNY
Alright forget it. Fuck it. Just
gimme back the hundred bucks I
advanced ya, and the camera.

JOEY
But Mr. Benedeck I had to give away
seventy bucks like I told you, and
the camera-

BENNY
I DON’T GIVE A SHIT. I WASN’T
PAYIN’ YA TO GET BEAT UP AN’ THAT’S
ALL YA FUCKIN’ DID!

JOEY
But-

BENNY
YOU SAYIN’ THAT I GIVE YOU A
HUNDRED BUCKS AND A THREE HUNDRED
DOLLAR CAMERA AND ALL YOU WANNA
GIVE ME BACK IS THIRTY BUCKS!?
(Beat)
ARE YA JERKIN’ ME AROUND!?

JOEY
No, no Mr. Benedeck, I assure you.
It’s just that I don’t have the uh,
the uh – that would be four hundred
dollars then?
(Beat)
It’s just that I don’t have the
four hundred bucks on me. At the
moment.

BENNY
I didn’t mean right this minute, ya
fuckin’ screwball. Just get it to
me inna week.

JOEY
And uh, what happens if it takes a
little more than a week?

BENNY
Then I have someone beat the livin’
fuckin shit outa ya.

The food arrives, BENNY stares at his pasta as if confused
about how it got there, then he starts shovelling it down
with a spoon.

JOEY
Should I leave something for lunch?

BENNY
Huh? No! Ya fuckin’ nutball! Lunch
is on me!

EXT. DINER PARKING LOT – MID-MORNING

JOEY exits the diner and is halfway across the lot when a
maroon Cadillac pulls in front of him, its door opens,
almost magically.

LOU ARGO (O.S)
In

He abides. Inside the car is LOU ARGO, now fully clothed.

LOU ARGO
You see, I’m gonna have to have
someone beat the livin’ fuckin shit
out of you.

JOEY
Sir, I-I’m not sure I follow you.

LOU ARGO
Well you regard myself in the act
and try to take pictures. Now these
things, you will say, Mr. Argo,
these things were at the behest of
Benny Benedeck. Which is true, but
this does not excuse them. In fact,
that you would work with him makes
it worse.

JOEY
But-

LOU ARGO
These are the realities.

JOEY
But sir, there’s a particular
reason, in my case, why you
shouldn’t. May I explain?

LOU ARGO shrugs.

JOEY
Well sir, you have to understand,
I’m not really part of this world
at all. I was in college, you know,
and when I got out of college I
just, I couldn’t bear to just
continue in this future that was
set out for me. It would have been
publishing maybe, or maybe
advertising, or graduate school if
I wanted to go into teaching, but-
but- all of it seemed like death to
me sir.
(Beat)
An office, a life like everyone
else I knew, no surprises, no
excitement. And I thought, why?
What’s the point when I’m young and
at liberty to choose anything.
Anything, sir. The world is wide.
(Beat)
So I chose something which I knew
had risks, might hurt me, but I
thought; bodily harm, well, if it
doesn’t kill me, well, then it
passes, and I’ll be a broader
person sir. Although i’m currently
in the process of re-evaluating
this, but that was the basic idea.
Well, more a feeling than an idea
maybe. And maybe not a good one.
(Beat)
But the point is I’m only here so
as not to turn into one of those
people in the office or university
or advertising agency or what have
you. I’m here, sir, to learn and
experience and grow and broaden
myself. I’m not here because of
socio-economic pressures, sir.
(Beat)
So accordingly I’m not really
subject to the laws of, uh, the
socio- uh, I don’t know how to say
this. I’m- I’m on safari. This is a
safari sir, so I’m not one of the
actual, er… animals as it were.
So the whole question of whose side
and keeping discipline- you see how
it doesn’t really apply. How I
stand apart, sir.

LOU ARGO
So you’re saying- let me understand
this. You’re saying, I can’t beat
the shit out of you again because
you’re better than me.?

JOEY
No! No sir!
(Beat)
Well – yes – in a way- but…

LOU ARGO
Look. I think I can now sum up.
Frankly? You speak from a core of
confusion.

JOEY
Sir?

LOU ARGO holds up one hand, indicating silence.

LOU ARGO
Confusion. This life which you
describe. Advertising. Teaching.
What was it? Publishing. Nice
offices. Air-conditioned offices
I’m sure. Carpeted. Furniture. The
works.
(Beat)
In the city, I pass the bars where
these people drink. Nice bars. Is
this a bad life? The clothes? Nice.
The offices? Nice. The hours? Not
bad.
(Beat)
After work you leave this nice
office,in your nice clothes and you
go to this nice bar. Nice women go
there too. Girls who are also, in
publishing. Nice Clothes. Nice
Hair.

LOU ARGO pats one hand up under his ear, indicating nice
hair.

LOU ARGO
You pick one up. You fuck her. This
is what those bars are for! You
speak of different worlds: these
girls, me they would not fuck; You,
they will. One girl is not for you,
you pick up another. You get tired
of that, you fuck from behind. This
you flee?

JOEY
Well, sir, it-

LOU ARGO
Open your eyes! Please! See this!
All that you have thrown away. The
grass is always greener? The grass
is not always greener. There the
grass is greener. You seek a better
life, superior in what sense? None.
You don’t see this. You express
yourself marvelously, however this
does not hide the inner core, which
is confusion.
(Beat)
And so, you will have the shit beat
out of you. This is my final word.

INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST FIGHT

JOEY wakes up on the training room table, IRV is halfway
through a sentence, halfway through a conversation probably.
They are alone.

IRV
And, boy, Joey that last uppercut –
I felt that one.

JOEY groans and lifts himself up, his body covered in more
new bruises.

JOEY
That’s funny, cause I didn’t.

IRV
I would’ve throwed in the towel
before then, but
(beat)
It don’t look so good, so early in
the first round.

JOEY
I understand.
(Beat)
But what I don’t understand is why?
Why always a beating?

IRV
Well… Kid… You’ve lost a couple
fights, but I don’t know I’d go as
far as to say-

JOEY
I may be a little slower than the
other guy, a little less strong,
but I don’t get beat by a little
Irv, I get the crap pounded outta
me. Why is that?

IRV
Well, okay. Well…okay. Should I
tell you what I think?

JOEY
Irv! Please!

IRV
Well Joey, it’s like I told ya:
this fightin’ game,it’s all mental.

JOEY
But then you said-

IRV
Huh?

JOEY
Never mind.

IRV
Like anything in life, Joey, it’s
attitude. You can coach things
that’ll help, little things. That’s
what I do – I help. But I can’t
give ya that attitude. If you don’t
got that animal, it don’t matter if
you’re fast. Some guy who’s an
animal, he’s always gonna beat the
college professor.

JOEY
Do I Irv? Do I have it in me?

Silence.

IRV
Boy Joey, you need to rest up a
little.

JOEY
No, no, I need another one right
away. Tonight if you can.

IRV
Kid, you know the boxing commission
mandate a week between fights-

JOEY
Irv, I don’t have a week.

IRV
Hold your horses, Joey! It’s three
weeks after a knockout.

JOEY
Three weeks?

JOEY collapses back onto the bench.

JOEY
Irv, that’s not gonna do it for me.
This one was only what, two-fifty?
I need four hundred bucks, right
now.

IRV
Or?

JOEY
Or I get the crap beaten outta me.
(Beat.
Though there’s an obvious rejoinder
to that.

IRV
Kid, let me lend you one-fifty.

JOEY
No, no. I know you’re livin’ hand
to mouth as is Irv. I couldn’t.
Just get me one more fight and i’ll
be flush.

IRV
Well… to be honest kid, I’m not
sure that I can even get you
two-fifty again.

JOEY
I thought – What are you sayin’? I
thought two-fifty was the bottom?

IRV
I’m not sure I can get you another
fight. It’s the system, kid. They
don’t like a guy who keeps getting
knocked out in the first round. You
know those animals in the stands.
They want action, action, action.
Thes’re animals we’re talkin’ about
Joey- animals.

JOEY
It’s nice of you to blame the
boxing fans for wanting to see some
boxing.

IRV shrugs, throws a towel over his shoulder and slowly
exits the room. JOEY follows him, even slower. The Lights go
out, the door closes. Black.

MAN (O.S.)
Joe Carmody?

JOEY (O.S)
Yeah?

MAN (O.S.)
Benny says, ‘Hel-

SECOND MAN (O.S.)
Joe Carmody?

JOEY (O.S)
Ummmm…

SECOND MAN (O.S.)
Mr. Argo has a message for you.

MAN (O.S.)
Hey! I was here first ya fuck. I
get to bea-

The sound of running.

SECOND MAN
Hey, where’s he goin!

Screenplay
INT. BOXING RING – FIRST ROUND.
DING! IRV reaches over the ropes to tap his fighter, JOEY,
on the shoulder, half shoving him out into the ring.
In the far corner his opposition shuffles in, keeping his
head low and bobbing his body back and forth.
JOEY (V.O.)
Look at him, would ya? jiggling
like that when he is well out of
reach. It’s what all lousy fighters
do, just to show that they know the
moves.
As they approach one another the opponent swings suddenly
with his right hitting JOEY on the face. He follows through
with his left and JOEY stares straight into the glove as it
glides towards his face.
JOEY (V.O.)
It hit me, I was so surprised by
that right that I couldn’t quite
duck the left, but at least I’d
seen it coming. That’s somethin’,
that’s something all right.
He swings again with the right, hitting and repeating a
couple of times in a thip-thip rhythm.
JOEY (V.O.) (cont’d)
Jesus! He’s getting me in a hole. I
gotta-
(Beat)
We’ve gotta get this fight started.
While JOEY is thinking this the opposing fighter continues
to hit him.
JOEY (V.O.) (cont’d)
Lefts, rights, that’s pretty much
his whole repertoire. He’s a pretty
cliche fighter, pretty formul-
A long right jab smashed JOEY in the jaw.
JOEY (V.O.) (cont’d)
Wait a minute! This doesn’t seem
fair, all this hitting when I aint
set.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 2.
IRV
Hands up, Joey!
JOEY thrusts his hips out and throws his hands back for
balance as the blows have left him leaning on an awkward
angle.
JOEY (V.O.)
Woah, woah, what is this? The damn
canvas is about to swerve out from
under me.
The fighter lands a hard one in JOEY’s gut, bending him
over.
JOEY (V.O.) (cont’d)
I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe
and that kind of throws my whole
fight plan into a coked hat,
relying as it does on breathing.
JOEY collapses.
INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST FIGHT
IRV and JOEY are gathered in the locker room, re-grouping
after the loss. IRV unwraps JOEY’s fists, raising an eyebrow
at the pristine condition of the gloves.
IRV
One bad fight, kid. You’ll bounce
back. You’re young! You’re a baby
for chrissakes and it’s just one
fight.
JOEY
I’m not sure Irv. ’Fight’ implies
an exchange of blows.
IRV
That’s good kid, you’ve got a sense
of humour. And you’re educated;
just listen to ya talk, will ya?
(Beat)
What did I tell ya, kid? Did I tell
ya that fightin’ is a mental game?
Being mentally on the ball – you
got that. You got a leg up there on
these other bums.
(Beat)
Now this fight-
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 3.
JOEY
This beating.
IRV
Heh-heh. This fight-
JOEY
No really, it was a beating.
IRV
Heh, heh. Okay, this beaten, kid.
You know what the problem was?
JOEY
Obviously not. Tell me.
IRV
You were thinkin’ too much. I mean,
he’s there, he’s hittin ya, ya
can’t think about this, Joey, it
takes too long.
JOEY
I thought you said Fighting was a
mental game?
IRV
In a sense, yes. But primarily, no.
Primarily you gotta hit the guy.
JOEY
Uh-huh
IRV
And that’s really where he beat ya,
Joey.
JOEY
Uh-huh.
IRV
With the hittin’.
JOEY
Right.
JOEY lays down on the table and IRV gives him a patch-up and
a rub down.
IRV
But this – I reiterate this, Kid –
not to feel bad. it’s just one
fight.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 4.
JOEY
Beating.
IRV
Beaten. ’Cause I don’t care who –
Joe Louis, even Joe Louis had the
occasional bad fff- beaten, kid.
You know, he lost too.
JOEY
Look Irv, I’m no boxing historian,
but I believe even in the course of
losing a fight, Joe Louis would
sometimes hit the other guy.
IRV
May be, kid. I too am not a
historian. But they still went down
as lost fights, didn’t they, kiddo?
JOEY
At least they went down as fights.
INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST SHOWER
JOEY is alone in the locker room, a towel wrapped around his
waist, water dripping from his hair. He walks tenderly
towards his locker, his bruised body straining from the
motion.
MAN (O.S.)
Ah, look, it’s bagadonuts. Look at
ya, ya fuckin’ bagadonuts, you’re a
fucking bagadonuts, fuckin look at
ya.
A man walks out from the other side of the room, shaking his
head.
JOEY
Have we met?
MAN
Have we met? Have we met? Ya fuck
ya, no we aint met ya fuckin’
bagadonuts. Benny. I’m a friend of
Marty’s. I says to-
JOEY
Oh, how is Marty?
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 5.
BENNY
Shut the fuck up. I says to marty,
look I need someone for a job,
someone tough but with a touch, you
know, nice, not a fuckin jerk,
don’t need no skills but not a
jerk.
Benny wanders the room, circling Joey, poking at every
object he encounters.
BENNY (cont’d)
So Marty tells me he’s got this
nephew Joey who’s ’looking for
himself’.
Benny head starts shaking, then his body. It looks like a
stroke. His mouth falls open and emits the sound of a
garbage disposal – larrlarrlarr. He is laughing.
BENNY (cont’d)
’Lookin for himself’!
(Beat)
Course he didn’t tell me the reason
you was lookin’ for yaself was
’cause yas a fuckin’ bagadonuts.
Larrlarrlarr. But who gives a shit?
I don’t need no one fought.
JOEY
Uh-huh. Well what do you –
BENNY
Shut the fuck up. I got a personal
situation see. I got this wife here
fuckin’ someone else. His dick, her
pussy. Woom-pah woom-pah woom-pah.
Do I gotta draw you an
illustration?
JOEY
Uh, no.
BENNY
No. Course not. We’re adults. Don’t mean we gotta do no
adultary though, huh?
JOEY
Uh-huh
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 6.
BENNY
Huh?
JOEY
Uh, no.
BENNY
Fuck no. Not in my fuckin’ book.
Not in my fuckin’ wife.
(Beat)
So ya see it’s delicate. My wife
gettin’ bangarinoed by a buisness
associate. Woom-pah woom-pah
woom-pah. And I bet she screams
like a fuckin’ chinamen at the
track.
BENNY stares silently off into the distance. JOEY glances
around the room, possibly eyeing the exits.
BENNY (cont’d)
Well what’s the diff? So I got a
divorce action, which would be
helped innumerably by some proof a
all this. This is why i’m seekin’
someone, an individual, a person a
who ’aint a jerk. Huh?
JOEY
Uh-huh.
BENNY
Huh?
JOEY moves his mouth like a fish, failing to find any words.
BENNY belches, frowns then drifts his gaze away around the
room, as if wondering who belched. Then he whips his eyes
back to JOEY and his jaw drops open
BENNY (cont’d)
Larrlarrlarr. Yarl right, kid.
You’ll do. Fuckin’ Bagadonuts.
(Beat)
Pictures, ok? There’s five hundred
bucks in it for ya.
BENNY’s face then adopts a grotesquely strained expression,
attempting to mime sex.
BENNY
And be sure to get their faces.
Larrlarrlarr.
7.
BENNY’s face again adopts a grotesquely strained expression,
only this time it is because he has started to weep.
INT. DINER – THE NEXT MORNING
JOEY groans and collapses into a booth, waiving away the
waitress with his hand and instantly regretting the
exercion.
JOEY (V.O.)
It wasn’t a very attractive
proposition so I asked for a day to
think it over, but when I weighed
my future there wasn’t much to
throw onto the boxing side of the
scales: I could promote myself as
’The Human Speedbag’, I could go
for the world record in Blows
Absorbed, I could adopt a moniker
like Harold ’Happy’ Landings and
rent out advertising space on the
soles of my shoes but I certainly
couldn’t win a match.
(Beat)
I called Benny and told him I was
in, he told me to meet him here.
JOEY slurps up some of his watery coffee and quickly sculps
down the complimentary donut, looking about nervously as he
does, afraid BENNY might see but the man doesn’t enter until
the last bite is deep in his throat.
BENNY walks over to the table, nudges JOEY’s coffee cup,
crinkles the left side of his face and remains standing. He
pulls out an old NIKON camera and a hundred dollar bill and
places them on the table.
BENNY
It’s happnen today, kid, and soon,
real soon. Gonna be a little
afternoon delight.
JOEY
How do you-
BENNY
They go to the Valley View Motel.
JOEY
You already know where they go?
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 8.
BENNY
Yeah, I had a private investigator
follow her and establish the
whatnot.
JOEY
Well – why didn’t he take the
pictures?
BENNY
Money, kid. What’s widdese
questions? He’s expensive. I figure
once he gets things figuered out,
any schmuck can take the pictures.
(beat)
Widall due respect.
JOEY
Uh-huh. Yeah. I guess it will be
easy enough to get pictures of ’em
going in the uh, the motel room.
Wouldn’t that be enough to prove
that they’re, uh…
BENNY
Whuddya sayin’?
JOEY
Well how am I suppsoed to get
pictures of them actually-
BENNY
You gotta get ’em doin’ it. Faces
remember. We had a deal.
JOEY
I know but, but i’m not sure IBENNY
THIS AINT A FUCKIN NEGOTIATION! I
WANT PICTURES OF ’EM DOIN’ IT! I
WANNA RUB LOU ARGO’S FACE IN HIS
OWN SMELLY SHIT!
JOEY
Okay, Mr. Benedeck.
BENNY
YOU HEAR ME?
JOEY
Yeah-
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 9.
BENNY
HIS OWN SMELLY SHIT!
JOEY
I hear you, Mr. Benedeck.
BENNY stands there panting, suddenly his jowls quiver, his
eyes roll back in his head and he clenches his fist.
BENNY
YARGGGHH! THAT FUCKIN’ FUCKIN’ FUCK
LOU ARGO! NNRRNPHH!
BENNY frowns and loosens his shoulders then looks around the
Diner as if looking to see who has caused such a ruckus. He
nudges JOEY’s coffee again, tilts his head then turns and
leaves.
INT. JOEY’S CAR. VALLEY VIEW PARKING LOT – AFTERNOON
Joey sits staring through the windscreen. The hotel sign
flickers, only four letters remaining solidly lit; ’LEVE’.
He rolls a cigarette, lights it and leans back into his
chair, looking out towards the hotel.
JOEY
The ’Valley View’. Huh.
He looks out to the left of the hotel, there is a mountain.
He looks to the right, the same.
JOEY (cont’d)
Only it’s in the valley, not above
it, so it ain’t got no view.
He cracked himself up. A maroon Cadillac pulls into the
parking lot and a woman steps out of the passenger side,
wearing knee length fur over tight pants and a halter top.
JOEY (cont’d)
The dame.
She wriggles down the walkway uncomfortably, as if unable to
properly extend her legs. She holds both her hands in the
air, level with her head, as if for balance. On her left
hangs a gaudy green bag that slaps against her side with
each step. Joey snaps a photo.
The car parks and turns silent. A man emerges from the
drivers door. Fiftyish. LOU ARGO.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 10.
JOEY (cont’d)
The Mark.
Joey snaps a photo. They find their room and enter,Joey
snapping all the while. When they’re gone he cycles through
the pictures, half of them are obscured by the smoke from
his cigarette, which is now beginning to fill the car. He
throws open the door and coughs.
JOEY
Plan B.
Joey begins walking towards the hotel, the camera holstered
by his side. He’s got a new kind of swagger.
JOEY (V.O.)
Ok, I’ll give him a few minutes to
get warmed up, to get started and
then give the knob a try. If it
turns I lunge in, take a few
pictures and sprint.
(Beat)
Lou won’t chase me, not naked he
won’t, not without shoes he won’t,
and by the time he’s all attired
i’ll be outta here.
(Beat)
But what if it doesn’t turn? I’ll
give that door the shoulder that’s
what.
Joey rolls his left arm around its socket.
JOEY (V.O.) (cont’d)
and if that doesn’t work then
(beat)
Hah, I’m in luck.
Joey stops by the window, the leather curtain has curled at
the edge, allowing him to look in. He crouchees down and
places his face against the glass, readying the camera in
his hands. The sign sparks loudly – only two letters now
shining, ’EW’ – and Joey turns towards it
MAID (O.S)
What you doin’?
A MAID iss standing in the doorway of the next room down, a
trolley in front of her.
MAID
That’s a private motel room. What
you doin’.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 11.
JOEY
It’s ok I – I do this
professionally.
MAID
Do what now? That’s a private hotel
room.
JOEY
Noones gonna know. I’m not
disturbing anyone. Here
Joey tilts his wallet towards himself, hiding its contents
from the maid, then takes a twenty dollar bill and hands it
to her. She takes it and folds it into her pocket.
MAID
Well… Check with Mr.Curtis.
JOEY
Who’s Mr. Curtis?
MAID
In the office.
JOEY
But what if Mr.Curtis says no dice?
MAID
I can’t help that.
JOEY
Then what about the twenty?
MAID
I can’t help that.
JOEY
But why does Mr.Curtis need to
know?
MAID
He the manager.
JOEY
But if he’s the one who decides
then how come you get a twenty?
MAID
That’s a private hotel room.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 12.
JOEY
I know, but-
MAID
Are you givin’ me the sass?
JOEY
No, not at all I just-
MAID
Go check with Mr. Curtis.
INT. VALLEY VIEW MANAGER’S OFFICE – AFTERNOON
A man sits behind a counter watching baseball on a small
Black and White TV. He is bald. He has a tube taped to his
upper lip that then enters his nostril.
JOEY
Mr.Curtis?
(Beat)
I uh, I’ve been hired to gather
evidence, uh, in a certain official
court case, involving a certain
party who are, uh, certainly in one
of your rooms.
(Beat)
So, I’ve got to just take a few
pictures, which is perfectly legal
of course, but the maid suggested
that I get your okay.
(Beat)
Of course I don’t want to put you
out; if twenty dollars would make
that alright for you then I can
certainly provide that.
MR. CURTIS raises a small metallic tube to his throat.
MR.CURTIS
GOKAY
JOEY reaches into his wallet and pulls out the only
remaining note.
JOEY
Um… Do you have any change of a
fifty?
MR. CURTIS takes the bill, sticks it in his pocket and
swivels back to the ball game. Silence.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 13.
JOEY (cont’d)
That was, uh, that was a fifty.
(Beat)
Sir, could I get thirty dollars
back?
MR.CURTIS raises the tube.
MR.CURTIS
GUCK YOU
JOEY
But- That was a fifty, sir.
MR.CURTIS
GUCK OFF, GYOU GLITTLE GASSHOLE
EXT. THE VALLEY VIEW PARKING LOT – AFTERNOON
A gray woolen figure emerges from behind the trunk of Joey’s
car, it is him under a moving blanket. He trundles back
towards the room muttering obscenities to himself as he
goes. When close these begin to merge with those coming from
within the room. They were at it. Joey kneels down before
the window, blanket shadowing his face.
JOEY
Missionary position, huh. Cliche
sure, but a classic too.
We see the grey blur against the wall, it is making shutter
sounds.
THE DAME (O.S)
Lou!
LOU ARGO (O.S)
Oh yeah!
THE DAME (O.S)
Lou! Oh, sweet baby Lou!
LOU ARGO (O.S)
Ahhh! Benny! Benny Benedeck!
THE DAME (O.S)
Lou! Lou! Lou!
LOU ARGO (O.S)
I’m doin this to you, Benny!
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 14.
THE DAME (O.S)
Lou?
LOU ARGO (O.S)
I’m fuckin’ you Benny Benedeck!
THE DAME (O.S)
Ahh! Lou! Lou the Window!
LOU ARGO (O.S)
This is for you, Benny! Feel this
you prick!
THE DAME (O.S)
No, Lou!
LOU ARGO (O.S)
Ahhh! Yes!
THE DAME (O.S)
Lou, No! There’s someone at the
window!
The blur starts to shuffle and stand when it is smashed down
by something off screen. It rises and is smashed down again.
Blows continue to fall as it struggles on the ground. The
door opens. A naked LOU ARGO kneels down and tears off the
blanket as THE MAID continues to swing her vaccuum cleaner
tube as JOEY, the tube waggling behind.
LOU ARGO
You…Fuckin’…Punk!
THE MAID
I came as soon as I heard you
bein’ disturbed Mistuh Argo!
LOU ARGO tears at the camera cord round JOEY’s neck causing
the bulky device to smash into his face.
THE MAID (cont’d)
He’s a Rascal! He’s a little
peepin’ tom, he is!
LOU ARGO grabs at the cord again, planting a foot on JOEY’s
back for leverage. As the Camera smashes JOEY in the face
the second time the cord breaks. LOU begins whipping him
with it. JOEY passes out. MR. CURTIS watches on from the
office doorway, arms folded.
15.
INT. DINER – THE NEXT MORNING
JOEY slumps forward on a stool, his body covered in bruises
and bandages.
BENNY
Ah f’Chrissakes. F’Jesus fuckin
Jesus. Ah, ya dumb fuckin’
bagadonuts.
BENNY sits down at the booth.
BENNY (cont’d)
So you’re tellin’ me that I can’t
count on you for this then?
JOEY shrugs, then winces from the motion.
BENNY (cont’d)
Alright forget it. Fuck it. Just
gimme back the hundred bucks I
advanced ya, and the camera.
JOEY
But Mr. Benedeck I had to give away
seventy bucks like I told you, and
the camera-
BENNY
I DON’T GIVE A SHIT. I WASN’T
PAYIN’ YA TO GET BEAT UP AN’ THAT’S
ALL YA FUCKIN’ DID!
JOEY
But-
BENNY
YOU SAYIN’ THAT I GIVE YOU A
HUNDRED BUCKS AND A THREE HUNDRED
DOLLAR CAMERA AND ALL YOU WANNA
GIVE ME BACK IS THIRTY BUCKS!?
(Beat)
ARE YA JERKIN’ ME AROUND!?
JOEY
No, no Mr. Benedeck, I assure you.
It’s just that I don’t have the uh,
the uh – that would be four hundred
dollars then?
(Beat)
It’s just that I don’t have the
four hundred bucks on me. At the
moment.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 16.
BENNY
I didn’t mean right this minute, ya
fuckin’ screwball. Just get it to
me inna week.
The food arrives, BENNY stares at his pasta as if confused
about how it got there, then he starts shovelling it down
with a spoon.
JOEY
And uh, what happens if it takes a
little more than a week?
BENNY
Then I have someone beat the livin’
fuckin shit outa ya.
JOEY
Should I leave something for lunch?
BENNY
Huh? No! Ya fuckin’ nutball! Lunch
is on me!
EXT. DINER PARKING LOT – MID-MORNING
JOEY exits the diner and is halfway across the lot when a
maroon Cadillac pulls in front of him, its door opens,
almost magically.
VOICE (O.S)
In
He abides. Inside the car is LOU ARGO, now fully clothed.
LOU ARGO
You see, I’m gonna have to have
someone beat the livin’ fuckin shit
out of you.
JOEY
Sir, I… I’m not sure I follow
that last part.
LOU ARGO
Well you regard myself in the act
and try to take pictures. Now these
things, you will say, Mr. Argo,
these thigns were at the behest of
Benny Benedeck. Which is true, but
this does not excuse them. In fact,
that you would work with him makes
you worse.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 17.
JOEY
But-
LOU ARGO
These are the realities.
JOEY
But sir, there’s a particular
reason, in my case, why you
shouldn’t. May I explain?
LOU ARGO shrugs.
JOEY (cont’d)
Well sir, you have to understand,
I’m not really part of this world
at all. I was in college, you know,
and when I got out of college I
just, I couldn’t bear to just
contineu in this future that was
set out for me. It would have been
publishing maybe, or maybe
advertising, or graduate school if
I wanted to go into teaching, butbut-
all of it seemed liek death to
em sir.
(Beat)
An office, a life like everyone
else I knew, no surprises, no
excitement. And I thought, why?
What’s the point when I’m young and
at liberty to choose anything.
Anything, sir. The world is wide.
(Beat)
So I chose something which I knew
did have risks, and might hurt me,
but I thought, bodily harm, well,
if it doesn’t kill me, well, then
it passes, and I’ll be a broader
person sir. Although i’m currently
in the process of re-evaluating
this, but that was the basic idea.
Well, more a feeling than an idea
maybe. And perhaps not a good idea.
(Beat)
But the point is i’m only here so
as not to turn into one of those
people in an office or
university or advertising agency
or what have you. I’m here, sir,
more to learn and experience and
grow and broaden myselt. I’m not
ehre because of socio-economic
pressures, sir.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 18.
(Beat)
So accordingly i’m not really
subject to the laws of, uh, the
socio- uh, I don’t know how to say
this. I’m- I’m on safari. This is a
safari sir. I’m not one of the
actual, er… animals as it were.
So the whole question of whose side
and keeping discipline- you see how
it doesn’t really apply. How I
stand apart, sir.
LOU ARGO
So you’re saying- let me understand
this. You’re saying, I can’t beat
the shit out of you again because
you’re better than me.?
JOEY
No! No sir!
(Beat)
Well – yes – in a way-
LOU ARGO
Look. I think I can now sum up.
Frankly? You speak from a core of
confusion.
JOEY
Sir?
LOU ARGO holds up one hand, indicating silence.
LOU ARGO
Confusion. THis life which you
describe. Advertising. Teaching.
What was it? Publishinging. Nice
offices. Air-condtioned offices I’m
sure. Carpeted. Furniture. The
works.
(Beat)
In the city, I pass the bars where
these people drink. Nice bars. Is
this a bad life? The clothes? Nice.
The offices? Nice. The houre? Not
bad
(Beat)
After work you leave this nice
office,in your nice clothes
and you go to this nice bar. Nice
women go there too. Girls who are
also, in publising. Nice Clothes.
Nice Hair.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 19.
LOU ARGO pats one hand up under his ear, indicating nice
hair.
LOU ARGO (cont’d)
You pick one up. You fuck her. This
is what those bars are for! You
speak of different worlds: these
girls, me they would not fuck. You,
they will. One girl is not for you,
you pick up another. You get tired
of that, you fuck from behind.
(Beat)
This you flee?
JOEY
Well, sir, it-
LOU ARGO
Open your eyes! Please! See this!
All that you have thrown away. The
grass is always greener? The grass
is not always greener. There the
grass is greener. You seek a better
life, superior in what sense? None.
You don’t see this. You express
yourself marvelously, however, this
does not hide the inner core, which
is confusion.
(Beat)
And so, you will have the shit beat
out of you. This is my final word.
INT. LOCKER ROOM – POST FIGHT
JOEY wakes up on the training room table, IRV is halfway
through a sentance, halfway through a conversation probably.
They are alone.
IRV
And, boy, Joey that last uppercut –
I felt that one.
JOEY groans and lifts himself up, his body covered in more
new bruises.
JOEY
That’s funny, cause I didn’t.
IRV
I would’ve throwed in the towel
before then, but
(beat)
(MORE)
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 20.
IRV (cont’d)
It don’t look so good, so early in
the first round.
JOEY
I understand.
(Beat)
But what I don’t understand is why?
Why always a beating?
IRV
Well… Kid… You’ve lsot a couple
fights, but I don’t know i’d go as
far as-
JOEY
I may be a little slower than the
other guy, a little less strong,
but I don’t get beat by a little
Irv, I get the crap pounded outta
me. Why is that?
IRV
Well, okay. Well…okay. Should I
tell you what I think?
JOEY
Irv! Please!
IRV
Well Joey, it’s like I told ya:
this fighing game, it’s all mental.
JOEY
But then you said-
IRV
Huh?
JOEY
Never mind.
IRV
Like anything in life, Joey, it’s
attitude. You can coach things
that’ll help, little things. That’s
what I do – I help. But I can’t
give ya that attitude. If you don’t
got that animal see it don’t matter
if you’re fast. Some guy who’s an
animal, he’s always gonna beat the
college professor.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 21.
JOEY
Do I Irv? Do I have it in me?
Silence.
IRV
Boy Joey, you need to rest up a
little.
JOEY
No, no, I need another one right
away. Tonight if you can.
IRV
Kid, you know the boxing comission
mandate a week between fights-
JOEY
Irv, I don’t have a week.
IRV
Hold your horses, Joey! It’s three
weeks after a knockout.
JOEY
Three weeks?
JOEY collapses back onto the bench.
JOEY (cont’d)
Irv, that’s not gonna do it for me.
This one was what, two-fifty? And I
need four hundred bucks, right now.
IRV
Or?
JOEY
Or I get the crap beaten outta me.
(Beat)
Though there’s an obvious rejoinder
to that.
IRV
Kid, let me lend you one-fifty.
JOEY
No, no. I know you’re livin’ hand
to mouth as is Irv. I
couldn’t. Just get me one more
fight and i’ll be flush.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 22.
IRV
Well… to be honest kid, I’m not
even sure that I can get you
two-fifty again.
JOEY
I thought – What are you sayin’? I
thought two-fifty was the bottom?
IRV
I’m not sure I can get you another
fight.
(Beat)
It’s the system, kid. They don’t
like a guy who keeps getting
knocked out in teh first round. You
know those animals in the stands.
They want action, action, action.
Thes’re animals we’re talkin’ about
Joey- animals.
JOEY
It’s nice of you to blame the
boxing fans for wanting to see some
boxing.
IRV shrugs, throws a toel over his shoulder and slowly exits
the room. JOEY follows him, even slower, as the lights go
out.
MAN (O.S.)
Joe Carmody?
JOEY (O.S)
Yeah?
MAN
Benny says, ’He-
SECOND MAN (O.S.)
Joe Carmody?
JOEY (O.S)
Ummmm…
SECOND MAN (O.S.)
Mr. Argo has a message for you.
MAN (O.S.)
Hey! I was here first. I get to
bea-
The sound of running.
(CONTINUED)
CONTINUED: 23.
SECOND MAN
Hey, where’s he goin!