1

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

 

“Siege”


written by

David Peckinpah
 

 

 

Aired Episode

Transcript


~~~


 

 


ACT ONE


FADE IN:


EXTERIOR - ALLEY


A piano is being played and Vincent has stopped in his nightly wanderings to listen. He is leaning against the brick wall of a building, standing between two garbage cans. His eyes are closed as he listens to the notes of Beethoven’s piano sonata “Pathetique”. The piano is being played by an old man in the basement of an apartment building opposite from where Vincent is standing.


CUT TO:


Suddenly Vincent hears the squeal of tires as a car enters the alleyway. He crouches down, hiding behind the garbage can and watches as two men get out of the car and light firebombs. The old man stops playing when he hears the car and switches off the light. The two men throw their firebombs through the basement window and drive away.


CUT TO:


MISCHA

My God!

(He stares in horror as the basement ignites.)

Help! Somebody help me!

(He begins coughing as the smoke becomes thick.)


Vincent, using his feet, crashes through the window, takes off his cloak and begins beating out the flames. The old man succumbs to the smoke and sinks to the floor.

Vincent succeeds in smothering the flames and has donned his cloak. he watches as the old man regains consciousness then backs away, preparing to leave.


MISCHA

Wait! I owe you my life.


VINCENT

Come no closer.


Vincent is in shadow, only his eyes are lit by the light coming through the basement window.


MISCHA

Why do you hide? Let me see you.


VINCENT

No.


MISCHA

Without your help, those punks would have

killed us all.


VINCENT

All?


MISCHA

The other tenants, those who refuse to be chased

from their apartments.


VINCENT

These men that did this, why do they try to drive

you from your homes?


MISCHA

Because we’re old and there’s a dollar to be made.


He tries to get up but can’t. Vincent moves to help him. Mischa is startled when he sees his rescuer’s face.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - MUSEUM


Another piano is being played at an opening of an art exhibit. Catherine is there with some friends admiring the paintings, and the man who has donated them to the museum.


WOMAN

It’s hard to imagine a better private collection.


MAN

Can you imagine being rich enough to give it away?


WOMAN

And he started with nothing! Elliot Burch is beyond

anyone’s imagination.


As Catherine studies the object of her friend’s admiration, Elliot looks up and catches her staring at him. They lock eyes, instantly fascinated with one another.


REPORTER

Mr. Burch, what is the estimated value of your collection,

and what prompted you to donate it to the museum?


ELLIOT

Can you put a price tag on magic?

The true value of great art lies in its ability to

influence and enhance the quality of humanity,

and contrary to popular opinion, I believe New

Yorkers still qualify.


Flash bulbs from photographers are going off as he speaks, but the whole time he and Catherine are still staring at each other.


REPORTER

Excuse me, Mr. Burch, could you look this way.

Just one more picture, please.


Fade from Catherine’s face to a painting she is studying, Elliot Burch comes up behind her.


ELLIOT

Incredible isn’t it? Everything happening at the

same time: passion, humor, danger.


CATHERINE

A little like life.


ELLIOT

More than a little, I’m Elliot Burch.


CATHERINE

Of course you are. I’m sorry, but you are

the reason we’re all here.


ELLIOT

I suppose I am.


CATHERINE

And I’m Catherine Chandler.


ELLIOT

I know.


CATHERINE

You do?


ELLIOT

I asked one of your friends.


CATHERINE

I guess it’s my turn to be a little flustered.


ELLIOT

Yes, it’s only fair.


CATHERINE

And not entirely un-enjoyable.


ELLIOT

Do you know that it has been a very, very

long time since I’ve been good and flustered?


A man walks up to the pair, interrupting their conversation.


LEWIS ARTHUR

Elliot . . . ah . . . I need a word with you.


ELLIOT

Well, do you know I really don’t have a

moment to spare? Lewis is my lawyer, he’s

a professional worrier and I will be in the

office very early . . . Catherine, come on.


Catherine and Elliot go, leaving the lawyer staring after them in exasperation.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - BASEMENT


Vincent and Mischa are seated across from one another.


MISCHA

So we stay inside behind locked doors like

frightened children. They come and turn off

our heat, break the elevators, stop up the plumbing…


A light is suddenly switched on and a voice calls.


SOPHIE

Mischa?

(Vincent stands.)

Mischa? Are you all right, Mischa?


VINCENT

Something will be done; I promise you.


He turns to leave.


MISCHA

Will you tell me your name?


Vincent turns back from the window he is about to climb through.


VINCENT

Vincent.


SOPHIE

(Coming down the stairs)

It’s freezing down here. You’re going

to catch you death…

(She sees the remains of the fire)

My God! Mischa, Mischa what . . . what happened?


MISCHA

Don’t worry, don’t worry, I’m fine. Those punks

threw a firebomb through the window.


SOPHIE

When will it stop? When are they going to

leave us in peace?


CUT TO:

INTERIOR- MUSEUM


Elliot and Catherine are talking.


ELLIOT

Your father must have been very disappointed

when you left his firm.


CATHERINE

He was, but he wants me to be happy.


ELLIOT

Are you?


CATHERINE

The work is relentless, exhausting, but sometimes . . .

it feels like . . . somehow, in someway I make

a difference. That’s a good feeling.


ELLIOT

Yeah, it’s no fun starting at the bottom


CATHERINE

No body cuts me any slack, but when

I do get a kind word it’s because I’m

doing the job, not because I’m the boss’s daughter.


ELLIOT

You know, you kids who grew up rich,

you got just as much to prove as those

of us who grew up poor. We spend our

whole lives trying to prove to the whole world

that we’re worth something; you have to prove

it to yourself. If your father isn’t proud of

you, he damn well should be.


She smiles at him and Vincent walking through a tunnel stops as if he has heard or felt something.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - STREET


Outside the museum, Catherine and Elliot have just exited the building and are surrounded once again by reporters and photographers. They head for a waiting limo.


Cut to Vincent in a tunnel still in an attitude of listening.


Catherine and Elliot enter the limo and it drives away.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR OF BAR


A sign over the bar announces Carnival.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - BAR


A man name Mundy is on the phone.


MUNDY

Something went wrong. I don’t know, all right?

Place should have gone up like a haystack. Don’t

threaten me, pal. Hey, you want to handle the job

yourself? Oh no, I didn’t think so. Wouldn’t want

to get any dirt under those manicured fingernails,

now would we? Look, you handle your part

of the deal, I’ll handle mine. Ok?


He hangs up the phone.


EXTERIOR - CATHERINE’S APARTMENT BUILDING


Elliot’s limo pulls up in front of Catherine’s apartment building. Elliot gets out and helps Catherine out. They face each other.


CATHERINE

Elliot, thank you.


ELLIOT

It was a terrific evening.


CATHERINE

Well, you did something quite wonderful for the city.


ELLIOT

Oh, you mean the art, I was thinking along

completely different lines.


CATHERINE

Well, thank you for the ride.


She begins to turn away, he stops her.


ELLIOT

Cathy, when can I see you again?


She takes a business card out of her purse and hands it to him.


CATHERINE

Call me.


They are obviously very attracted to each other. Mounting the stairs to her building, she turns to smile at him as he enters the limo and lowers the window to watch her.


INTERIOR - CATHERINE’S APARTMENT


Catherine is seated at her makeup table, removing an earring when she catches sight of Vincent on the balcony. She rushes to open the door.


CATHERINE

Vincent!


VINCENT

Did I startle you?


CATHERINE

No.


VINCENT

I…I came to…leave you a message.


She picks up the piece of paper he had left on the table. He turns to go.


CATHERINE

Don’t go.

(She reads the note)

Mischa Langer?


VINCENT

He and his friends are being driven from their

homes . . . terrorized. They’ve been beaten . . . robbed…


CATHERINE

You’re hurt! Is that a burn?

(She rushes to him, reaching out a hand to his face)

Let me get you something.


VINCENT

I’m not the one who needs your help, Catherine.

These people are old, terrified, their homes

almost burned tonight.


CATHERINE

Well, who’s doing this to them?


VINCENT

The ones hired to chase them out. Can you help?


CATHERINE

I’ll try…of course.


VINCENT

Good . . . you have a generous heart, Catherine.


CATHERINE

Something I learned from you.


VINCENT

No . . . it can’t be taught . . . it’s from the soul,

and you have so much to give.


CATHERINE

It’s all still very new. Sometimes I wonder

how all those little pieces will ever fit

together again.


VINCENT

Follow your heart, Catherine. Follow your heart, you must.


She nods and he leaves.


FADE OUT


END OF ACT ONE



ACT TWO



FADE IN:

EXTERIOR - MISCHA’S APARTMENT BUILDING


There is a moving truck and men moving to and fro, loading it. Mischa and Sophia are saying goodbye to friends who are moving out.


MISCHA

Herman, I’m gonna miss you.

We’ve been playing pinochle every Thursday

night for the last thirty years.


HERMAN

I know, Mischa I know.


Catherine pulls up in a taxi.


CATHERINE

Mr. Langer?


MISCHA

Yes?


CATHERINE

I’m Catherine Chandler. I’m an investigator

with the District Attorney’s office.


MISCHA

You’ve heard about what’s going on here?


CATHERINE

Why don’t you tell me in your own words?


MISCHA

These people must be stopped.



SOPHIE

They send punks to rough us up, vandalize

our apartment. The elevator’s broken a

week; they don’t fix it; we have to climb.


MISCHA

Now we don’t have any hot water.


CATHERINE

And you believe all of this is organized?


MISCHA

This is a rent-controlled building; the law

says they cannot evict us or raise our rents.

The only way they can make us move is to drive us out.


CATHERINE

Who is they?


Mundy walks over to the couple that is moving out.


MUNDY

Hi, folks


MISCHA

Over there he’s the one

(he indicates Mundy)

that sends the punks to try and scare us off.

(To Mundy)

I told you to stay away from us. Leave us alone.


MUNDY

I just came by to congratulate Herman and Sylvia

on the deal they made: five thousand dollars, new

condominium in Jersey. The offer is more than generous.


MISCHA

Our life is here; we are not interested in

your offer. This is our home.


MUNDY

I don’t know how much more I can do

for you people. The company won’t wait

forever. Please, think it over very hard. What

if they have the building condemned? Then what?

You’d be out on the street with nothing. Will your

pride keep you warm then?


Catherine moves to confront Mundy.


CATHERINE

Are you threatening these people?


MUNDY

I’m just telling them the way it is.

Be careful in this neighborhood, lady,

it can get pretty rough.


He turns with a smirk, going back to his car.


CATHERINE

Do you know his name?


MISCHA

Mundy, he works for the managing company

that took over when they sold the building

two months ago. I’ve dealt with bullies like him

before, only then they wore the brown shirts.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - JOE’S OFFICE


JOE

Leo Mundy, what a prince. Bounced off the

force on a brutality beef in ’78, six arrests

since then, all strong-arm stuff, no convictions;

bad and smart, that’s a tough combination.

Now he calls himself a security consultant,

hangs out at a downtown saloon? . . . boy,

this guy’s a class act all the way.


CATHERINE

Can we move on him?


JOE

I take this into the boss; he ventilates my shorts

for wasting his time. You’ve got nothing

tying Mundy into these punks.


CATHERINE

What does he have to kill one of them

before we do…


JOE

Whoa, whoa, whoa, penalty flag. Now we

can’t do the outrage the system stinks rap,

we’re part of it. You give me the tools

I do the job on him.


CATHERINE

Ok.


She leaves his office.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - DA OFFICES


Catherine and Edie are walking together towards Catherine’s desk.


EDIE

No, because you need special authorization

just to gain access…Whoa, ho,ho


Edie has just spotted the dozen roses on Catherine’s desk.


Girl friend, you must be a great first date.

This vase alone has to cost about

a thousand bucks. Who’s this guy?

Come on, what’s the story?


Catherine opens the card that came with the flowers.


Does he have a darker brother? I expect

all the juicy details at eleven.


CATHERINE

There are no juicy details…yet.


Edie begins to walk away


Not so fast. Could you check out this guy for me?

I also need particulars of any real estate transactions

in that area in the last year. Looks like someone’s

trying to buy themselves a whole block

down there; I want to know who.


EDIE

Well, it’s gonna take a minute; they got me swamped here.


CATHERINE

You know I wouldn’t ask…


EDIE

If it wasn’t important. I’m so good to you.


Catherine sits down at her desk and opens a file, the phone rings.


CATHERINE

Yes. Yes I got the flowers they’re beautiful.

Tonight? No, I don’t have any plans. I’d like that.

Ok, eight o’clock then.

CUT TO:

INTERIOR - FATHER’S CHAMBER


FATHER

Vincent, what weighs so heavy? Hmm . . . please tell me?


Vincent gets up out of his chair, walking away from Father, going to a sideboard with a figurine of a girl on it. He touches it and, with his back to Father, explains his melancholy state.


VINCENT

She met a man…she’s falling in love.


FATHER

Let her. Let her fall in love, Vincent.


VINCENT

My mind tells me to rejoice for her . . . that she

deserves the happiness . . . but my heart . . . is dying.

I’m poisoned by feelings . . . I’ve never felt before.

(He turns leaning against the sideboard with his head bowed)

Father . . . it hurts.


FATHER

I’ve always . . . dreaded . . . this moment . . . for you.

(He gets out of his chair, walking toward Vincent)

And I . . . I suppose I’ve . . . always known it would

Come . . . the day when your heart . . . would lead

you to long for a life . . . that can never be, Vincent.


VINCENT

Yes, a life that can never be.


Father strokes Vincent’s head. Vincent pulls away from his touch and slowly leaves the chamber.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - STREET


Catherine and Elliot are walking arm in arm down a sidewalk. Two saxophonists are playing a duet.


ELLIOT

(Laughs)

I do love the city. The thing is you can’t walk

a block without seeing somebody or something

that just absolutely knocks you out, stuns you.


CATHERINE

The good, the bad and the utterly absurd.


ELLIOT

Yeah, yeah, you know it’s constantly changing.

It’s constantly transforming itself, reinventing itself;

it’s unbelievable. It’s always expanding.


CATHERINE

With a little help from you.


ELLIOT

I’ve been lucky enough to realize

some of my dreams


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR – ANOTHER STREET


On another street in a neighborhood that isn’t so nice Sophie and Mischa are walking arm in arm.


SOPHIE

Thank you for coming with me. I thought

my medicine would last till morning.


A car pulls up behind the couple, the two that threw the firebombs are in it; one gets out.


MISCHA

Remember when the drug store delivered?

Nobody cares about service anymore.

And they had the soda fountain?

SOPHIE

Oh yes.


MISCHA

Egg creams, how you loved egg creams.


The punk grabs Mischa from behind and drags him into an alley while the other punk pulls the car in along side.


PUNK 1

Nice and easy now.


MISCHA

You come here, too?


Sophie whimpers as they are dragged into the alley.


PUNK 2

Shut up!


They start hitting Mischa while Sophie cowers against the wall in horror.


PUNK 2

Don’t get smart, old man.


Suddenly Vincent appears shoving the punk off Mischa, throwing him into a garbage can. As Vincent rips the coat off the other one a wallet falls out, his claws ripping the shirt underneath into shreds. He throws him against the wall and then onto the hood of the car. The other punk throws a garbage can at a roaring Vincent then dives through the open window of the car as the first punk drives off.


PUNK 2

Get out of here!


Vincent picks up the wallet out of the jacket he ripped off the one punk and runs off.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - CARNIVAL BAR


Mundy is shooting pool when the two punks come in to report.


MUNDY

One of the old folks pull a cane on you?


PUNK 1

Some guy jumped us.


PUNK 2

He had a roared like something out of the jungle.


PUNK 1

Yeah, that’s right, Leo. He looked like an animal . . .

hair, and he had these teeth, didn’t he, Charlie?


PUNK 2

He had claws about this long.

(He gestures with his hands)


MUNDY

And a big long tail, too?

(He adds mockingly)


PUNK 1

Hey, come on now, Leo, what kind of man does

that, huh? Look at that.

(He shows him the shredded back of his shirt, which he’s still wearing)


Mundy hits him in the stomach with the thick end of his pool cue.


MUNDY

A man with a razor. That’d make you two guys look

like jerks, wouldn’t it? Like you’re punked out.

You were too stupid to do a simple job. You guys are

very close to being through you know. I’m not

talking career here, you know what I’m saying?


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR – FOUNTAIN IN THE CITY


Catherine and Elliot with their arms around each other are walking towards a fountain. They stop, look at each other, and then kiss.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - CULVERT


Vincent stands in front of the drainage pipe looking forlorn.


FADE OUT


END OF ACT TWO



ACT THREE



FADE IN:

EXTERIOR - STREET


Catherine is just coming out of a building when a guy on a bicycle approaches her


CATHERINE

Hey, Bennie.


BENNIE

Hi, gorgeous.


CATHERINE

Ah, I wish I could ride like you.


BENNIE

Nobody rides like Benny.

(He hands her an envelope)

Special delivery.


CATHERINE

Thanks.


BENNIE

(He rubs her head)

Stay cool.

(He rides off)


She opens the envelope; it’s the wallet Vincent took from the punks jacket with a note: ‘This might help-V’


CATHERINE

Taxi!


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - OFFICES OF THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY


Catherine is seated at her desk on the phone.


CATHERINE

Mr. Langer, we have a good lead on the men

who attacked you. When we pick them up,

we’ll need you to identify them in a line up.

Are you prepared to testify when they come to trial?

Good, and Sophie feels the same way? Terrific!

Well, I’ll call you as soon as we have any news.


She hangs up the phone. Edie rushes up.


EDIE

Ok. All the buildings on their block are owned by

different holding companies. The three empty

ones are scheduled and ready for demolition. The

only thing stopping the wrecking ball on the

fourth is your old people who won’t move out.


CATHERINE

Thanks Edie, I appreciate it.


EDIE

How come you’re not looking thrilled?


CATHERINE

I was hoping to find a smoking gun, one name

to tie in all four buildings. Five will get you ten,

these holding companies are just a paper veil

concealing who really owns the buildings.

If we could just pierce that veil.


EDIE

I love the way you say ‘we.’ I’ll find it, Cath.


CATHERINE

Thanks, Edie, I owe you


EDIE

I’ll put it on your tab


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - JOE’S OFFICE


Joe is seated at his desk on the phone.


JOE

Yeah, that’s right aggravated assault. Hey,

don’t sweat it, all right? You pick them up;

my witnesses will testify.

(He looks at Catherine who is standing at the other side of his desk)

I want to know the second you got these guys. Right.


CATHERINE

What about Leo Mundy?


JOE

What about him? The old folks say he beat them up?

(He gets up)

Hey look, we’re getting two hard cases off the street

that’s better than nothing.

(He moves around his desk to the file cabinet)


CATHERINE

Will you deal? Let them plead to lesser charges

if they testify against Mundy?


JOE

Now she’s playing public defender.

(He flips through some files)

You’re pushy, Radcliffe, I like your style.

Let’s just say . . . it’s possible. Ok?

(He looks up, out the open door of his office)

What the hell is going on out here?


Elliot Burch is following a waiter who is pushing a cart towards Catherine’s desk.

Catherine stands by Joe as they watch


JOE.

I see you’re brown bagging it like the rest

of us working stiffs, hey Chandler?


All Catherine’s co-workers are watching and whispering


ELLIOT

You said you were too busy for lunch

so I brought lunch to you. I hope you like lobster.


He lifts the lid off one of the plates to reveal a lobster dish


CATHERINE

Elliot, this is a very sweet gesture but…


ELLIOT

Fresh raspberries and cream

(He holds a bowl of raspberries, trying to feed her a fork full)

Try one.


CATHERINE

No, thank you


ELLIOT

Please, try one


CATHERINE

Elliot!

(She backs away)

Please, this is my office; I work here.


Elliot looks around finally realizing the embarrassing situation he has put her in.


ELLIOT

I’m really very sorry, Catherine.


The pop of a champagne bottle being opened is heard.


All I can say is it seemed like a wonderful

idea at the time.


CATHERINE

Another time.


He nods to her. He turns to the waiter.


ELLIOT

Out.

(He turns back to Catherine)

Still friends?

(She nods and he leaves, following the waiter)


She waits a minute then follows him out the door.


CATHERINE

Elliot, don’t think it was a total waste.

The gesture was lovely.


ELLIOT

Yeah. Well then, will I see you tonight?


CATHERINE

Absolutely!

(They kiss)


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - STREET


Catherine comes out of a building and tosses a bill wrapped around a note into the case of a saxophone player, giving him a knowing nod. When she walks away, he stops playing, reads the note, and leaves.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - MISCHA’S BUILDING


Catherine is escorting Mischa and Sophie out of the building into her car. As the couple get into the car, she notices Mundy sitting in a car across the street.


MISCHA

Trouble?


CATHERINE

Don’t worry. He’s just trying to frighten

you so you won’t testify.


She begins to get into the car when she turns and walks over to Mundy.


MUNDY

You got a problem, lady?


CATHERINE

My witnesses are testifying, and if any harm

comes to them, I’ll know where to look, so stay away.


MUNDY

I don’t know what you’re talking about.


CATHERINE

Well then, you better do a bed check, Mundy.

Two of your campers are in a holding cell downtown.

I’m going to put you away, you and whoever you work for.


MUNDY

Maybe some day you and me will get a chance

to dance together, lady, in the dark; I’d like that.


She leaves, going back to her car.


PUNK

What if they roll over on us, Leo?

Sell us out for a lighter rap.


MUNDY

I’m connected in very high places . . . one call,

and they’re back out on the street.

She’s got nothing.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - PARK


It’s night and Catherine is walking towards the culvert watched by Mundy who is parked on the drive in his car.


Vincent opens the door as she enters.


CATHERINE

I’m glad you came; I . . . wasn’t sure you would


VINCENT

Have you been well?


CATHERINE

Yes, we’ve been able to help you friend,

Mischa, and his friends. We’ve already put

some men in jail. It’s only the beginning,

but the violence should stop.


VINCENT

Good.


CATHERINE

Vincent, I don’t want to cause you any pain.


VINCENT

Don’t struggle, Catherine; there is no need.


CATHERINE

No need! Why?


VINCENT

Because we know, we always knew that this

bond between us was only a dream we shared.


CATHERINE

A dream? No, Vincent, our bond is the most

real thing I’ve ever known. more than anything in my life.


VINCENT

Do you love this man?


CATHERINE

I don’t know. But if I do it won’t change

anything; I won’t let it.


VINCENT

Someday . . . someone will come, and you’ll live

another life . . . and dream another dream.


CATHERINE

I don’t want to lose you, Vincent.


He walks back to the tunnel opening, looks back at her and ducks through the door. As she looks on, he closes the door.


Mundy watches as she comes out of the culvert, waits till she’s out of sight and then goes in himself. He looks around and spots Vincent’s footprints in the dirt.


FADE OUT



END OF ACT THREE



ACT FOUR



FADE IN:

INTERIOR - BAR


Mundy is on the phone.


MUNDY

So what about getting my guys out of jail?


VOICE

We’ll handle it.


MUNDY

I’m telling you this broad is trouble,

she keeps nosing around that building

she’s gonna make us very miserable.


VOICE

You’ve been following her?


MUNDY

I watched her meet some guy in the park

today in a tunnel. I saw her go in

and I saw her come out, but I didn’t

see him just some footprints. I don’t know

how the hell he got out without me seeing him.


VOICE

Find out who it was.


MUNDY

What are we going to do about the broad?


(The voice turns out to be Elliot Burch’s lawyer, Lewis Arthur)


ARTHUR

Forget about her, do what you were

hired to do, clear out that building.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - CRIMINAL COURTS BUILDING


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - CRIMINAL COURTS BUILDING -- COMPUTER ROOM


Catherine walks up to Edie who is sitting at a computer console.


CATHERINE

Pay dirt?


EDIE

Hey, still a long way from it. I been punching

into these holding companies trying to find out

who the principal players are. I mean somebody

has gone through a lot of trouble to make that

damn near impossible. I mean, I know the serious

drug czars run this kind of game to launder money,

can’t mention any names yet, but there’s this.

(She points to computer screen)

Three of those holding companies use the same law

firm as agent and New York business address. That one.


CATHERINE

Have I told you lately that you’re amazing?


EDIE

Yeah, me and the Mets, who by the way are at

Shea Sunday should you . . . trip across a spare

ticket or two, say in your daddy’s . . . private box?


CATHERINE

You’re a bandit.


EDIE

Dinner with Mookie post game would be lovely.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - OFFICE BUILDING


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - OFFICES OF LEWIS ARTHUR


RECEPTIONIST

Mr. Arthur, there’s someone here from the

District Attorney’s office to talk to you.


SECRETARY

Mr. Arthur, Catherine Chandler.


She shows Catherine into the office


ARTHUR

Ms. Chandler,

(He stares at her)

have we met?


CATHERINE

Almost. The other night at the museum opening.


ARTHUR

Ah yes, of course, you’re Elliot’s . . . ah . . . new friend.

Here sit down. And how may I help you?


CATHERINE

You’re the agent of record for these corporations,

Mr. Arthur. I’d very much like to contact the

principals regarding an investigation I’m working on.

(She hands him a list)


ARTHUR

Oh, I’m afraid I can’t do that. These names

are privileged information. However, if there’s

anything else I can help you with.


CATHERINE

You can tell me if these companies are

controlled by Elliot Burch.


ARTHUR

Ms. Chandler, surely you can respect my

position regarding confidentiality.


CATHERINE

I’ll get a court order if need be.


ARTHUR

Do what you will, Ms. Chandler.

Now . . . you really must excuse me, I have . . .


CATHERINE

A busy calendar? I know.


She leaves; he seats himself at his desk and pushes the intercom button.


SECRETARY

Yes, Mr. Arthur?


ARTHUR

Get me Elliot Burch, it’s urgent


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - JOE’S OFFICE


Joe is seated at his desk throwing darts. Catherine opens the door as a dart whizzes past her face; she quickly closes it again.


JOE

Come in.


CATHERINE

I just found out Mundy’s leg breakers

are back on the street


JOE

Yeah, I know, it kind of surprised me too,

bail being as high as it was. No self-respecting

bonds man would touch it.


CATHERINE

Spare change to whoever signs Leo Mundy’s paychecks


JOE

Do you have a name?


CATHERINE

I have a hunch, I don’t want to jinx it.

Well, can we get police protection for our witnesses?


JOE

No way this is penny ante stuff.

Hand me those darts, will you please?


CATHERINE

We are talking about two old people brave

enough to do their part for us. We owe them!


She grabs the darts out of the board and stalks over to him


You know those thugs are going to be right back!


JOE

All right. Look, I’ll see if I can increase patrols

in the area that’s the best I can do.


He holds his hand out for the darts; she gives him the phone instead.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - BURCH OFFICE BUILDING


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - RECEPTION AREA


The room is filled with reporters and photographers waiting for Elliot to make an announcement. Catherine strides purposely for his office door.


RECEPTIONIST

You can’t go in there; Mr. Burch is

preparing for a press conference.


Elliot is seated at his desk when Catherine barges in.


ELLIOT

Cathy, I’ve been trying to reach you all morning.

I just got off the phone with Arthur, he told me…


CATHERINE

You own the building!


ELLIOT

Well yes, I . . . ah . . . I…I had no idea what was going on.

You’ve got to believe me. I…


CATHERINE

Leo Mundy works for your management company.


ELLIOT

Cathy, I’ve got hundreds and hundreds of employees.

I can’t monitor of every one of them.

Listen, I’m appalled at the things that have been going on.


CATHERINE

I’m not so sure, Elliot.


ELLIOT

Ah, please.


CATHERINE

I think those old people are just obstacles to you,

to be removed regardless of the price


ELLIOT

That’s not true and if it was true what are we talking.

We’re talking about thirty people, fifty people?

The project that I’m planning for that block

will employ ten thousand people. When it’s

completed, it’ll generate millions of dollars of

new jobs, revitalize the entire neighborhood.


CATHERINE

At what price? We’re talking about human beings!


ELLIOT

Listen, I’ve been very, very generous with these people.


CATHERINE

Generous? You are rationalizing everything you’ve

done. Men on your payroll have tried to murder people!


ELLIOT

Honey, that is a pretty wild accusation.


CATHERINE

I don’t have enough to go public…yet.

But I promise you this isn’t over.


ELLIOT

Cathy, don’t walk away.


She goes through the door. He follows, pulling on his suit jacket.


Cathy! Cathy!


She turns to glare at him as the reporters converge.


REPORTER

There he is. What’s the projected cost of the building, Mr. Burch?


ELLIOT

Gentlemen, welcome.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - BURCH BUILDING


Catherine leaves the building, crying.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - MISCHA’S APARTMENT


‘The Pathetique’ is playing on an old portable record player.


There’s a knock on the door.


SOPHIE

Coming!

(She checks on Mischa who is taking a nap

in the bedroom and goes to the door)

Who’s there?


CATHERINE

Sophie, it’s Cathy.


Sophie unlocks the door.


SOPHIE

Just in time I’m making dinner.

(Catherine re-locks the door)

Something new about the case?


CATHERINE

Mundy’s punks got out of jail.


SOPHIE

Come, sit.


CATHERINE

Sophie, there’s somebody very powerful behind

all this. The whole block is being leveled for a

new development. The most important thing now

is your safety. You must all use every precaution.

I’ve ordered extra patrols. Where’s Mischa?


SOPHIE

He’s laying down; he’s fine, don’t worry.

This whole business has him worn out. You should

have known him when he was young full of energy,

strong. They broke him; they crushed his spirit, made

him old, now this. You’ll, please, eat with us there’s plenty.


CATHERINE

I’d love to.


Catherine gets up and replaces the chain on the door and the bar.


SOPHIE

Mundy’s punks? You think they’ll come for us now?


CATHERINE

Sophie, it might get worse.

Are you sure it’s worth all of this?


SOPHIE

Oh yes, someone has to stand up to them and say

no and refuse to run. It starts with one person,

even an old man or and old woman. See, if nobody

says no, stands up and fights this madness then

the nightmare begins again.

(She pulls back the sleeve of her dress where

Catherine can see a number tattooed.)

Believe me we know.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - MISCHA’S BUILDING


Mundy comes into the building with three of his thugs; they have baseball bats and flash lights.


MUNDY

Get the basement.


They put stockings over their heads.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - MISCHA’S APARTMENT


Sophie and Mischa are showing Catherine a picture album.


MISCHA

Look at my Sophie, she’s eighteen

here, the year we were married.


SOPHIE

You were so tall and handsome.

No wonder I fell in love with him.


The telephone rings, Sophie goes to answer it.


Excuse me.

Hello…in the building? Call the police.


The thugs cut the phone wires.

Hello.


The power is turned off.

They’re in the building.


Mischa, Sophie and Catherine leave the apartment.


SOPHIE

We’ll fight, all of us together.


MISCHA

Please, Mama, go with Cathy; I’ll get the others.

The last apartment on the left is empty.


CATHERINE

Quick, Sophie.


Catherine and Sophie hurry down the hall as Mischa goes down the stairs, he hears Mundy.


MUNDY

Get going; it’s the next floor.


THUG

Ok.


Mischa quickly goes back up as Mundy and his thugs come up the stairs. They pass the floor Mischa has entered. Catherine and Sophie hide in the empty apartment. Mundy and his men kick open the door to Mischa’s apartment, quickly going through it.


THUG

There’s no one here.


MUNDY

Let’s move on.


Meanwhile Mischa knocks on the door of a neighbor.


MAN

What is it?


WOMAN

What’s going on?


MISCHA

Come on. All of you.

Arm yourselves. Don’t panic.


MUNDY

Kick them all in.


The thugs kick in the door of an occupied apartment, a woman screams.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - WHISPERING BRIDGE


Vincent is walking on the bridge when he feels Catherine’s panic; he turns and runs.


CUT TO:

INTERIOR - MISCHA’S APARTMENT BUILDING


MUNDY

Get out here.


WOMAN’S VOICE (0.S.)

No, no, leave us alone.


He herds a couple out of their apartment.


Mischa, meanwhile, is on the lower floor continuing to wake people up and having them arm themselves with anything they can use as a weapon.


OLD MAN

What? Mischa?


MISCHA

Go. Everyone wake up.


CUT TO:

Vincent running.


CUT TO:

Cathy and Sophie in empty apartment.


MISCHA

Come. Let’s go.


MAN’S VOICE (O.S.)

Somebody get some help!


Old people are pouring into the hallway, armed with hammers and pipes.

MISCHA

Don’t be cowards. We all stick together.


THUG

Come here. Come on out of there.


Mundy kicks in the door where Catherine and Sophie are.


Cut to Vincent riding on top of subway car.


Cut to Mischa leading a group of residents.


MISCHA

Get out of our building!


THUG

Get back, come on, get back.


MUNDY

Well, sweetheart, it looks like we’re going to

get a chance to dance after all, huh?


As Mundy is removing the stocking from his face, Catherine attacks him. She punches him in the stomach then hits him with her flashlight. He tumbles out into the hallway where there is a melee in progress.


MUNDY

You’ve had it old man; you’ve had it.


One of the thugs has Catherine around the waist, lifting her off her feet. Vincent leaps in through the window, roaring in anger. Everyone stands stunned as he pulls the thug holding Catherine away and lifts him high against the wall. He slashes the thug as another one comes at him with a bat. Vincent throws him with such force that he lands at the other end of the hall under the window.


CATHERINE

Vincent!


Mundy comes at him, but when he sees Vincent’s face, he backs away and trips over the body of the other thug and falls out the window. Vincent makes a grab for him, but he misses and they hear the sound of screeching tires. Vincent turns back from the window. Everyone stares at him as Catherine makes shooing motions.


CATHERINE

We’re all right…go!


Mischa smiles at him as he turns to the window and climbs out.


OLD WOMAN

Did you see that?


OLD MAN

What was it?


MISCHA

Enough, he’s a friend, a friend like this one

and no one must ever know.



CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - CATHERINE’S APARTMENT BUILDING


Catherine gets out of a taxi.


TAXI DRIVER

Thanks a lot, lady.


Elliot has been waiting across the street in his limo; he gets out, quickly crossing the street to her.


 

ELLIOT

Catherine, I’ve been waiting for you. Look

there’s been a terrible misunderstanding.


CATHERINE

Only on your part, those people are not moving.

I’ve got enough on your management company

to stop the project


ELLIOT

No!


CATHERINE

Yes! The building stays!


She turns, glaring to emphasize her point. Elliot leaves, slapping his gloves against his leg in frustration.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - CATHERINE’S BALCONY


Catherine comes out on her balcony; as she looks down at the table, she sees a book. It is the sonnets of William Shakespeare. Inside the flyleaf Vincent has written: ‘Shakespeare knew everything’. A red rose is pressed between the pages of the twenty ninth Sonnet.



We hear Vincent reading it:

When, in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes,

I all alone beweep my outcast state,

And trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries,

And look upon myself, and curse my fate,

Wishing me like to one more rich in hope,

Featured like him, like him with friends possess’d,

Desiring this man’s art, and that man’s scope,

With what I most enjoy contented least;

Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising,

Haply I think on thee, and then my state,

Like to the lark at break of day arising

From sullen earth, sings hymns at heaven’s gate;

For thy sweet love remember’d such wealth brings,

That then I scorn to change my state with kings.


CUT TO:

EXTERIOR - CITY


Vincent sits on the roof of a building, watching over the city at night.


FADE OUT



THE END