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CAYOM YEAR 8 - PART I - MOVIE SUBMISSION

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The Idiots

 

Genre: Sports Documentary

Directed By: Casey Affleck
Release Date:  April 12, Year 8
Theater Count: 2375 Theaters
Budget: $7.5 million
Running Time: 105 Minutes
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for Brief Strong Language

 

Narrated By: Ben Affleck and Matt Damon

 

Featuring Interviews with: Bill Burr, Johnny Damon, Rachel Dratch, Theo Epstein, Chris Evans, Terry Francona, Nomar Garciaparra, John W. Henry, John Kerry, John Krasinski, Pedro Martinez, Conan O'Brien, David Ortiz, Manny Ramirez, Alex Rodriguez, Mitt Romney, Bud Selig, Joe Torre, Tim Wakefield, Mark Wahlberg, among others

 

Premise: In 2004, a dysfunctional, party-hard, loose cannon coterie of baseball players called the Boston Red Sox ended one of the longest championship droughts in sports history, and revitalized one of America's original cities.

 

Summary:

 

Chapter 1: Aaron Bleepin' Boone!

 

This initial segment of the documentary chronicles the close of the 2003 Boston Red Sox season, which culminated in a bitter seven game series against their hated rival the New York Yankees. The series is hard-fought and full of emotion and anger, including a dramatic benches-clearing brawl during which star Boston pitcher Pedro Martinez flings septuagenarian Yankee coach Don Zimmer to the ground with strong force. The final game of the series goes into extra innings, where Aaron Boone hits a walk-off home-run that wins the series for the Yankees and sends them to the World Series. The Red Sox sulk in their clubhouse and fans across New England are dejected and heartbroken, at yet another instance of the Curse of the Bambino. Boone's home run enters the lexicon of New England Sports talk as one of the most infamous occurrences in Red Sox history.

 

Chapter 2: 86 Years

 

This segment of the documentary first goes back in time to 1918, shortly after the Boston Red Sox win the World Series. The team at that time featured an extremely valuable player by the name of Babe Ruth, who split his time between hitting and pitching. The owner of the Sox, Harry Frazee, liked to finance Broadway productions and viewed his ownership of the team as a way to put money in his pocket for other business ventures. Wanting money to finance his latest play, in 1919, Frazee trades Ruth to the New York Yankees for the sum of $125,000.00. Frazee gets his play on the stage, and the Yankees get a player who becomes the most famous baseball player who ever lived.

 

Following the trade, the Red Sox endure a calvacade of bad luck, misfortune, and playoff heartbreak, reaching the World Series 4 times over the next 86 years, and losing all four in dramatic fashion, among other dramatic losses that crush their championship hopes. By comparison, the Yankees in the same time period reach the World Series about 40 times, and win 26 of them. The documentary revisits some of the iconic moments of this period: Enos Slaughter's "Mad Dash", Carlton Fisk waving the home run fair, Bucky Bleepin' Dent's home run, Bill Buckner's legs. The documentary also spends a little time discussing the changing nature of the city of Boston, such as the violent uproar in 1974 for the desegregation busing program, housing crises, and the everlasting Big Dig.

 

By 2003, the sports fanbase for Boston was exhausted, to the point of assuming that any Red Sox season would ultimately end in heartbreak.

 

Chapter 3: The Boy Wonder

 

Following the close of the 2002 baseball season, the Red Sox take a big chance by installing as the team's General Manager 29-year old Theo Epstein, the youngest General Manager in history at that point in time. Epstein brings a new way of thinking to baseball, being one of the pioneers of analytics, building off of the dynamics and theories of the "Moneyball" Oakland Athletics. Going into the 2004 season, Epstein makes a few substantial changes to the roster, including trading for outspoken and aggressive starting pitcher Curt Schilling. There's some friction and discussion in the front office, and between the owner, coach, and Epstein, as there's differences in opinion about how to strategize the team for the season, but eventually things get smoothed out.

 

In Boston as a whole, just following the World Series, the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that gay marriage was legal in the state, spurring celebrations in much of the city, which in general is left-leaning. The decision is stayed until spring 2004 to allow the state legislature time to do a legislative solution.

 

Chapter 4: The Idiots

 

The collection of players forming the Boston Red Sox for the season are quite the array of characters, ranging from the flamboyant and prima donna Pedro Martinez, to the eccentric, uncontrollable, oddball slugger Manny Ramirez, to the affable and gregarious David Ortiz, and the disheveled, bearded, party man Johnny Damon. This loose-playing, partying, eclectic bunch of individuals, many of which kinda did things to their own tune, or kinda ended up a bit clueless or goofy, end up being called The Idiots by the Boston sports media, and the name catches on nationwide as the Red Sox start the season doing well, but into May and beyond they start hitting big trouble with injuries, numerous miscues on the field, and other problems. Tensions also grow between players, and between players and coaches, most especially with the star shortstop Nomar Garciaparra. By mid-summer, the Red Sox are eight games behind the Yankees in the standings, and instances like a brawl between Sox catcher Jason Varitek and Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez only serve as fuel for the media fire covering The Idiots as a trainwreck of a team.

 

Meanwhile in Boston, the state legislature takes no action to either implement or overturn the state supreme court, so on May 17, 2004 the first same-sex marriage licenses are issued in the city, with hundreds of weddings occurring in the initial days, and national media giving the event their full attention. There's some tensions as many opponents of same-sex marriage converge on Boston to protest in front of the State Legislature, but the overwhelming response in the city is positive.

 

Chapter 5: The Shake-Up

 

With the Red Sox mired in struggle, Epstein makes one of the most dramatic player transactions in team history when at the trade deadline he trades Garciaparra, one of the faces of the team, to the Chicago Cubs. Epstein gets crucified by both the media and by fans for trading Garciaparra away, but he stands by it as necessary to shake up the nature of the team. The removal of Garciaparra from the team removes much of the toxic atmosphere from the team's clubhouse, and the players received in the trade, while not stars, provide valuable assistance in key spots, and the Red Sox turn things around, winning 22 of their last 25 games to qualify for the playoffs. In the first round of the playoffs, the Red Sox battle it out with the Anaheim Angels but win it in three games, to advance to the League Championship Series against their nemesis, the New York Yankees.

 

During this time, Boston hosts the Democratic National Convention, where Massachusetts senator John Kerry is nominated as the Democratic candidate for President.

 

Chapter 6: Of Socks and Sox

 

In a mirror of 2003, the series between the Yankees and the Red Sox goes to seven games, with the Yankees winning the first 3 games of the series, making each subsequent game a must-win for the Red Sox, or they get eliminated from the playoffs. Games 4 through 6 are nailbiters, with Games 4 and 5 each going into extra innings. Game 6 goes to the Red Sox in what is known as the Bloody Sock Game, as their pitcher Curt Schilling had to have an ankle sutured, and the sutures ripped during the game, bleeding through his sock. The dramatic, pain-filled performance by Schilling sends a jolt through teams and fans alike, so when Game 7 comes, the Red Sox absolutely destroy the Yankees, and advance to the World Series against the venerable St. Louis Cardinals, who had the best record in baseball in 2004.

 

It turns out to not be close, as in an anticlimax the Red Sox sweep the Cardinals in 4 games, bringing the World Series trophy back to Boston for the first time in 86 years. The entire city of Boston goes on a joyous bender unlike almost anything seen in the city for decades, and for a brief moment, the city is truly united in success and celebration. The documentary shows a bit of the victory parade, and provides some additional context, such as the Farrelly Brothers romantic comedy Fever Pitch being filmed during the World Series and the ending being changed mid-production as the Red Sox win the whole thing, with Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore attending the winning game in-character.

 

Boston success does not carry over to John Kerry, as he loses the 2004 presidential election to incumbent George W. Bush, with the election results hinging on a narrow win by Bush in Ohio.

 

The documentary closes out with some discussion of the aftermath for the Sox and many of the key players, noting things such as Pedro Martinez's election to the Hall of Fame, Manny Ramirez's multiple steroid test results and sudden retirement, Curt Schilling's devolving into a MAGA troll. As a closing note, it's mentioned that Theo Epstein some years later left the Sox to take over the Chicago Cubs, and eventually led them to break their own 108-year curse in 2016.

Edited by 4815162342
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The War Between Ants

Studio: Infinite Studios 

Release Date: 9/20/Y8

Genre: Documentary

Director: John-Paul Davidson

Rating: PG-13 for thematic elements and mild language

Budget: $7.5M

Theater Count: 2,652

Runtime: 95 minutes

The subject interviewed are the animators at PDI/DreamWorks and Pixar

 

Plot: 

 

1998 was a big year for animation, creating many milestones as two non-Disney distributed animated films grossed over $100M domestic; Paramount/Nickelodeon’s The Rugrats Movie and DreamWorks Animation’s The Prince of Egypt. Disney also had a bang up year as their second film in their deal with Pixar, A Bug’s Life broke Thanksgiving records and hopped over $160M domestic being the biggest animation of 1998, and Mulan also did $120M domestic. 1998 also had another big animated movie about ants titled Antz, from the newly formed rival DreamWorks which grossed $90M. The most interesting thing about Antz is it opened a month before A Bug’s Life but both films have similar plots, and spawned a tale of rivalry and drama.

 

In 1994, former Disney chairman of the film division, Jeffrey Katzenberg quit Disney after a feud with Disney’s CEO at the time, Michael Eisner, over the position of president of the film division. Katzenberg left, as Eisner convinced the board not to pay Katzenberg’s contract bonus. Katzenberg teamed up with Steven Spielberg and David Geffen to form DreamWorks SKG, a new film studio, with an animation division set to rival Disney. 

 

Katzenberg used ideas that he suggested at Disney to make their film lineup, from collaborations with Aardman, The Prince of Egypt and Sinbad. In 1996, DreamWorks teamed up with and bought 40% of Pacific Data Images (PDI) to make computer animated features, and began working on their first film: Antz scheduled for March 1999.

 

However, this started a ripple in the animation pool, that soon became a tsunami. Pixar, who had just made the biggest film of 1995, the computer animated Toy Story which grossed over $190M domestic, making it the third biggest animated movie at the time, where dismayed to hear this as their next film was A Bug’s Life which was called Bugs at the time.

 

The director of A Bug’s Life and former Pixar CEO, John Lasseter and Chairman and Apple guru Steve Jobs accused Katzenberg of stealing their idea as Lasseter was close contact with Katzenberg, as the two were known to be solid friends as Katzenberg helped the Pixar deal. Lasseter alongside co-director Andrew Stanton told Katzenberg, shortly after Toy Story opened about Bugs in detail. Stanton mentions that Lasseter was excited about Toy Story, noting it’d open more doors for computer animation but noted that Lasseter noted that Katzenberg was curious when Bugs was releasing and in hindsight they should’ve been more tight lipped. As in 1995, DreamWorks initially wanted to open The Prince of Egypt as their first animated feature in Thanksgiving 1998. A year later, Disney retaliated by opening Pixar’s Bugs on the same release date which Lassiter confirmed around the same time.

 

Lasseter immediately called Katzenberg, asking if the Antz rumors were true, which Katzenberg confirmed. While Katzenberg never confirmed taking the idea, they’re many different stories how Antz was greenlit, some saying it came from Antz’s Director Tim Johnson in 1991, or in 1994, Antz’s producer Nina Jacobson who was a DreamWorks executive who pitched it. Regardless, Lasseter noted that Katzenberg was paranoid about the deal, and was focused more on revenge on Disney.

 

Katzenberg was furious by Bugs opening in Thanksgiving 1998, contacting many Disney executives to convince them to move Bugs to no avail, pushing Egypt to Christmas. Paramount’s The Rugrats Movie was also set for the week before Thanksgiving in 1998 as well making things more complicated, forcing Katzenberg to take more drastic measures.

 

Katzenberg moved Antz to October 1998, as well as giving PDI employees financial incentives to get it out on time in an attempt to get A Bug’s Life to move back. Writers of Antz, the Weitz brothers (Chris Weitz and Paul Weitz) noted how the pace was hectic, noting that they had to do multiple rewrites and revisions. Jobs and Lassiter were also furious as Katzenberg called Lasseter to reveal his true plan. Katzenberg would shutdown production on Antz if Lasseter moved A Bug’s Life so The Prince of Egypt could open in Thanksgiving. This infuriated Lasseter as he slammed the phone down and went straight to Jobs, who recalled Lasseter went “bullshit”.

 

Jobs called Katzenberg to discuss this as Jobs couldn’t change dates as Katzenberg had a plea deal. Katzenberg taught Jobs a lot of business, suggested Bug’s Life could have “animation troubles” and Jobs has a lot of pull at Disney. Jobs called this extortion leaving things between the two computer animation titans frosty. Lasseter never saw Antz at the time, noting if the film was anything else, he’d have the whole studio take a day off to see it, dismissing Antz as a shlock A Bug’s Life. This soon took a turn worse in the media as Jobs and Katzenberg would create a press frenzy, as Jobs said “The bad guys rarely win” which DreamWorks’ marketing head Terry Press fired back “Steve Jobs should take a pill”. This lead to a riff between Jobs and Katzenberg for years as Katzenberg at Shrek’s premiere went to talk to Jobs noting Antz wasn’t stolen as he would’ve gotten a percentage of A Bug’s Life due to his settlement.

 

What happened at the end? In addition to both films financial success, critics loved both. A key difference was tone as A Bug’s Life was more family friendly and lighter while Antz was darker and more adult in tone, scoring a PG. Antz and Egypt also set the tone of how DreamWorks would be different to Pixar, through use of celebrity voices to more adult humor. The studios would both go on to be giants in the industry, and the employees became fast friends again. Although, PDI closed down in 2015 due to budget cuts at DreamWorks. Did the battle between the ant movies shake up the world? No, but it showed the drama behind the scenes and how the studios would craft different films, and helped mainstream animation grow to large successes today.

 

Edited by YourMother the Edgelord
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THE GNASHING

 

Studio: New Journey Pictures

Director: Trey Edward Shultz

Genre: Horror

Release Date: July 3rd, Y8

Theater Count: 2,735

MPAA Rating: R for strong language, violence, blood and gore, drug use, nudity, sexual situations, and disturbing imagery and themes

Runtime: 1 hr 58 min

Budget: $25 Million

Original Score Composer: Brian McOmber

 

Main Cast

Hailee Steinfeld as Lisa

Ryan Potter as Trent

Dean-Charles Chapman as Bruce

Amandla Stenberg as Natalie

Sierra McCormick as Caitlin

Kodi Smit-McPhee as Rory

 

Minor Cast

Kymberly Elise as Natalie's Mom

 

Logline: Six teenagers' souls are thrust into danger after finding a book that condemns those whose names are written inside of it to Hell.

 

*Special thanks to @MCKillswitch123 for their insight.*

 

Spoiler
Spoiler

Black. Japanese choir music. Fade in gradually. A car is parked on the side of a road at a ghastly hour of night. Six teenagers are dancing near the car. Cut to a high-angle of their feet—the feet are shuffling. Cut to the teens. They’re having a ball, dancing to the car’s inaudible music—you can see it on their faces.

 

Bruce (Dean-Charles Chapman) sneaks to the driver’s seat. He turns the volume up—the song displayed is by the latest rap sensation—and he rejoins the others. Lisa (Hailee Steinfeld) completely lets herself go to the music, jumping up and down, smiling. There’s a shot of Bruce watching her as he dances. Then Trent (Ryan Potter) spins around and adjusts his glasses—a “business-casual” dance move—making Natalie (Amandla Stenberg) laugh out loud. Caitlin (Sierra McCormick) gets into the groove while Rory (Kodi Smit-McPhee) dances as well. They dance, but the audience only hears the ominous noises of the Japanese choir music. The teens huddle together and laugh together.

 

They’re oblivious.

 

The car drives down the road. But it sputters and slows. They stop again. This time, something’s wrong with the engine. Trent, the owner of the car, tasks Lisa and Bruce with finding water so they can cool the engine. Lisa and Bruce find a water pump many blocks away from the car.

 

Lisa starts filling a bucket with water. Bruce looks down at her longingly and makes unwanted advances toward her. Lisa backs away and tells him to stop. He chases her to a brick wall and traps her, but Lisa pushes him off.

 

Lisa: What the hell, Bruce? You’re better than this.

 

Bruce stares at Lisa. Then he looks down. He knows he’s done wrong.

 

Lisa: Let’s just get the water and go.

 

Lisa departs. Bruce shoves his hands in his pockets. He follows her, brushing the soles of his feet against the gravel. Then he sees it—a blank-cover book tossed haphazardly on the vacant lot. He picks it up, flips through the pages, and is astonished by its content.

 

Bruce carries the book back to the car. He slips the book into his backpack so the others don’t notice it, and they drive off.

 

Fade to black and cut to Lisa’s alarm going off. Lisa gets ready for school, and she’s running a little bit late, and she argues with her parents about typical high school topics such as grades. Cut to Lisa driving; she has a little bit of road rage because she’s eager to get to school as quickly as possible. In the classroom, she’s one of the first students to complete a test, and she brings it to the front desk, but she notices a folded note on her desk and opens it. She opens it. The note says “everyone who went on the drive last night is meeting in Ms. Weiss’s room during lunch. – Rory”—and she peers to Rory, who’s sitting next to her, focused on his test. She contemplates the meaning of the note.

 

Cut to Lisa walking through a hallway cluttered with students. She walks into Ms. Weiss’s room, and Bruce, Trent, Natalie, Caitlin, and Rory are inside, having arranged six desks into a circle. Bruce says, “come in and close the door”; Lisa does this and sits at one of the desks. Bruce pulls out the book he found and explains what it says: that the book damns those whose names are written inside of it to Hell. Natalie shudders. Caitlin immediately doubts that the book is real in any way, shape, or form, but Bruce suggests that the fact it's not real means it’s 100% safe to write their names in the book. Lisa says, “I don’t care if it’s real or fake—who in the right mind would do this,” and Rory replies, “I wrote my name in the book.” Bruce adds that Rory even went as far as writing his name in cursive. Natalie demands to know why, and Rory explains what he believes—that there’s no way Hell exists. Then Natalie argues that he doesn’t know that for sure, a statement that threatens to start a whole religious argument, but Bruce interrupts everyone, telling them that they should all write their names in the book simply because it would be a "fun bonding experience." Trent ponders, then he slides the book close, clicks his pen, and writes in it. Natalie stands up and storms out of the room, and Bruce calls Natalie a scaredy-cat as Caitlin takes the book, writes her name, and slides the book toward Lisa. Lisa thinks for a moment, then looks at Bruce and says, “because of last night, I’m not doing this.” Bruce tells her to wait--but she's gone. Bruce sets his elbows on his desk, glaring in the direction of the door.

 

Natalie hurries into the bathroom and washes her face. Lisa walks in after her and asks her what’s wrong. Natalie says that the others don’t know what they’re getting into—they’re not considering how awful it would be to go to Hell. Lisa hugs Natalie and tells her everything’s going to be okay.

 

Cut to Lisa in third-period art class, and she’s sitting in front of a blank canvas, and all the other students are busy painting, and she’s completely zoned out, and her teacher asks her why she hasn’t painted anything, and Lisa doesn’t answer, and the teacher asks if she’s okay, and she still doesn’t answer…

 

Cut to Lisa walking through the hallway. Trent walks past her. She turns around. She grabs Trent by the shoulder and demands to know why he wrote his name in the book. Trent pushes up his glasses and tells her that he didn’t. Lisa asks him what he means by this. Trent clarifies he did write his name in the book—but he misspelled it. Lisa asks him what he’s trying to prove by that. Trent explains that he studies religion in his free time, and even though he’s an atheist, Hell is so bad a place in every faith he knows of that binding oneself to it is a fool’s errand. Trent then starts walking off because he has to get to a class. Lisa asks, “what if Bruce finds out,” and Trent replies—“he won’t.”

 

In the gymnasium, a physical education teacher blows a whistle and declares "free play." Students congregate together to play basketball and dodgeball during the time they have. Bruce walks around the gym searching for something to do, sort of analyzing the activity in the room. He asks a group of guys if he can join their game, and they tell him they already have six players, but he can play if someone drops out. Bruce says "okay" and saunters away. He looks around, not necessarily interested in anybody's activities, and ulitmately decides to sit alone in the bleachers.


Cut to Rory wheeling his bike away from the rack. Trent sees Rory and asks him if he has any plans for the weekend. Rory plans to meet with Bruce the next morning to smoke "you-know-what". Trent tells him to call him if he changes his mind, as Trent has some free time, and if Rory wants to, they can hang out or help each other study. Rory tells him, "we'll see what happens." Rory gets on his bike and rides away as Trent stands and watches with his hands in his pockets.

 

Cut to Caitlin's room in her house, which has a lot of pink-colored and "girly" items" inside of it; she with Lisa and Natalie, and they're sitting crisscross-applesauce in the middle of the room. Natalie asks Caitlin how swimming is going since Caitlin's on the swim team, and Caitlin says it's going great and thanks Natalie for asking. Lisa says something along the lines of Caitlin being the only one she really knows who's playing a sport, and the others say that they think Bruce plays baseball during the Spring (they're not sure because they don't know her very well). Then Caitlin asks Lisa if something's on her mind. Lisa sighs and says that the book is on her mind. Caitlin admits that Bruce all of a sudden finding a book like that is a little creepy. Natalie says that if she were Bruce, she would've just left it buried. But Caitlin tells Lisa not to worry about it because there's a very good chance that the book is completely fake and that there's nothing to be worried about. Lisa agrees and says that helps her feel better about it. They all sit in silence for a while.

 

Cut to Rory’s house. Rory's alone in his room when he gets a call from Bruce, who's decided to smoke not with him, but with a group of college junkies instead. Rory tells him that that's kind of a dick move because that was their chance to hang out. Bruce says they can smoke together another time and hangs up. This bums Rory out.

 

Then during dinner, he gets into an argument with his parents; since they’re trying to ask him to consider which colleges he’ll apply to, and Rory screams at them to leave him alone about it. We cut to the next morning and Rory’s home alone--the parents left to take care of errands--so Rory swallows some of his dad's prescription drugs. He’s chilling in his room when he hears the sound of cabinets opening and closing downstairs. He gets up to investigate but falls down the stairs, breaks his neck, and dies. The person opening and closing cabinets was his mom, who calls an ambulance thinking it’s not too late—but it is.

 

Cut from Rory’s dead body to Rory waking up in a dingy room. He’s lying on a stone slab, and he’s completely naked. A strange volcanic rumbling can be heard from outside the room. Rory comes to his senses, sits up, and notices that a tall black-hooded man (face concealed by shadow)—an Extinguisher—is standing in the room with him. The Extinguisher points a leather-gloved finger toward a large brown door, which is clearly the only exit from the room. Rory stumbles to the door and opens it, and he stares in horror as an endless space of fire flails beyond the door. The Extinguisher marches toward Rory. Rory spins to the Extinguisher in fear, but the Extinguisher pushes him, and Rory disappears within the flames. The Extinguisher hesitates, then closes the door.

 

Cut to a ceiling fan. Cut to a college junkie who smokes weed and passes to another guy, who smokes it and passes to another guy, who smokes it and passes to Bruce, who smokes, puffs, and smiles. Cut to under the surface of a swimming pool; Caitlin dives in wearing a swimming cap, goggles, and a one-piece swimsuit, and the camera follows her as she swims to the other side. She reaches the other side and checks her stopwatch—she’s getting better! Cut to Trent in a public library; he hunches over, traces his finger over words in a Torah, and makes notes in a notepad. Cut to Lisa socializing at a party, drinking from a red dixie cup, and zoning out a little bit—something’s still on her mind. Cut to Natalie eating spaghetti with her family, and something had said something funny, so they’re all laughing together and enjoying each other. We cut to the family gathering together on the living room couch; the dad selects a movie from a streaming service. They watch it together. Something funny happens in the movie, and they all howl in laughter.

 

Cut to a low-angle shot of the high school. A school bell rings. Cut to Lisa in her class; she looks over at the desk next to her and sees that it’s empty. She stares down at her desk and frowns. Cut to Ms. Weiss’s empty room, where Lisa, Trent, Natalie, and Caitlin sit together in silence. They didn’t get the news that Rory had died until after their moments in the previous montage. They’re very sad about it. Lisa is the one who asks where Bruce is. None of the others know—he’s not at school. Natalie says, “wasn’t he the one who asked us to write our names in that book?” Caitlin attempts to shut the conversation about the book down because she doesn’t want to hear about it. Trent shakes his head and says that the coincidence, of Rory writing his name in the book and him dying, is too significant to ignore. Caitlin stands up and tells the others to shut up, screaming that hell is a myth. The others stand with her, and Lisa tells her that she also thinks hell is a myth—but it’s common sense that she’d want her name taken out of the book, and that’s why they need to get a hold of Bruce. Caitlin agrees. Then Lisa tells them she’s holding a pizza party at her house. She knows Bruce won’t say no to pizza.

 

Cut to Lisa’s house. Lisa pays for two pizzas and sets them down on the dining room table. Trent tells them that he just got off the phone with Bruce and that he said he’s coming with the book. Lisa opens the pizza box, and they all stare down at the pepperoni pizza inside. Natalie, in a brief monologue, compares the steam, burnt cheese, and orange grease to what hellfire might look like. Trent touches the crust, nods, and says, “it feels like hellfire too—let’s give it a minute to cool down.”

 

Cut to Bruce driving down the neighborhood road. He asks himself if he's going the right way and discerns that he is after all. The book slides off the shotgun seat and onto the floor, so he reaches for it, and then an oncoming car honks its horn. Bruce swerves into the correct lane, narrowly avoid a collision with a car that's not going as fast as he was. Bruce curses out the other driver as if they were the ones who almost hit him, and he says, "if I knew your name, I'd write it in the book. "

 

Cut back to Lisa’s house. The doorbell rings. Lisa opens the door—it’s Bruce, and she lets him in. He sets it down on the table. While greeting everyone, he reaches to touch Lisa's hair, and Lisa swats his hand away, telling him, "Christ, Bruce, we still need to erase the names." Bruce is like "okay, geez," and he opens the book to the pages where their names were written down. Trent takes a pencil out of his pocket and erases Rory’s name—or so he thinks.

 

Because even though the eraser’s pressed against the pages, Rory’s name isn’t being erased. It’s as if it’s not being erased at all. Caitlin sees this and freaks out, taking Trent’s pencil and attempting to erase her own name. But the eraser doesn’t work on her name either. She keeps trying to erase it while everyone tells her to calm down. Then she bursts into hysterics and runs out of the house.

 

Lisa is the one who runs out after her. She calls out to her, but Caitlin keeps running on the neighborhood sidewalk—running like a madman. We get a shot of Bruce, Trent, and Natalie as they step outside, concerned for Caitlin. Lisa yells, “CAITLIN, STOP!” And we cut to a shot of Caitlin running into the street, and Caitlin screams as the headlights of an oncoming car envelops her—the car hits her, and her body falls underneath. She is run over and killed. Lisa gasps and runs to the scene. The car drives away. Lisa stands over Caitlin mangled dead body and begins crying. We cut back to the other three as Natalie starts weeping into Trent’s chest; Bruce stares not in horror, but in shock. Lisa stumbles toward the others and screams at them to call 911. They rush inside the house, and Lisa paces back and forth.

 

Cut to Bruce in the midst of realizing something, and Trent tells Natalie (while she dials 911) that their best option, if they can’t erase the names in the book, is the burn the book in a fire. Bruce then takes the book and storms out of the house. Natalie begins reporting the hit-and-run, but Trent notices Bruce and rushes out after him. Trent asks him where he’s going and tells him to wait, but Bruce, with no explanation, gets in his car and drives away from the house—with the book in his possession.

 

Cut to the scene of the crime, where Caitlin’s naked soul watches as the paramedics cover her body in a blanket. Cut to a close-up—she gasps and turns to an Extinguisher, who is marching toward her. She turns, and she sees another Extinguisher, who also approaches her. Cut to a high-angle shot, where we see that about four or five Extinguishers are weaving their way through the crime scene, quickly closing in on Caitlin. Cut to shots of Lisa, Trent, and Natalie in the house as they answer a police officer’s questions—Caitlin screams their names during these shots. Cut to a window, where Caitlin bangs on the window to try and get their attention. It’s futile—none of them notice her. The Extinguishers grab her, and she wails as they drag her away to her fate.

 

Cut to Trent's room at a shadowy night, specifically ti Trent’s desk lamp beaming light onto his notebook. He speaks aloud and he jots notes in the book, talking about how he’s basically discovered that a specialized hell realm exists, and that it implies one of the religions might be correct, but knowing the book disallows erasure doesn’t prove a specific religion. “Nevertheless, the implications… The implications…” He sets the pen down; overwhelmed by what the book’s power suggests, he covers his face and ponders.

 

Lisa lays in bed. Her mom tries to talk to her and console her, but Lisa tells her that she wants to be alone. So her mother leaves her alone. She stays awake for a while, but eventually drifts off to sleep…

 

She awakens in an endless lake of water. She can’t breathe. A faint orange light illuminates the lake. She looks up. Fire covers the water’s surface. She looks closer. There are other people in the water, burning above the surface. A gust of an underwater current brushes against her. She looks down as the gust becomes stronger. Helpless, the current pushes Lisa’s body toward the surface of the lake. Cut to the surface, as Lisa breaks through the surface and screams as flames broil her—the crane shot dollies out; we see more souls burning, and their screams join the cacophony of horror…

 

Cut to Lisa waking up in her bedroom, kicking and screaming—absolute hysterics—and she eventually realizes that she’s safe and sound, back in her bed. She cries to herself.

 

Cut to Trent taking things out of his locker and closing it. He steps out into the middle of the hallway. Then he notices. Between him and a sea of students stands Lisa, who stares at him with the unmistakable look of the eyewitness. Across the sea, Trent stares back.

 

Cut to Trent and Lisa standing outside, in front of the school’s brick wall. Trent asks, in amazement, if Lisa really did see Hell in her dream. Lisa once again confirms this. Trent hurriedly takes out a notepad and asks Lisa for more information.

 

Lisa: What?

Trent: Was it a traditional lake of fire? I mean, the type of fire commonly associated with the underworld?

Lisa: Well, it was a lake of fire, but I don’t know which specific lake it was… Why is this important?

Trent: I think we can use your vision as a means to discern which religion is the true one.

Lisa: Trent. I didn’t see those kinds of things. I just saw water, and fire, and other people

Trent: You had to have seen something. Did you recognize any iconography?

Lisa: Fuck your iconography. I felt those flames. I heard those screams. Hell is real. Does it really matter which faith is correct? They all preach that shit.

Trent: Lisa. This is important. Do you know how many people we can help with this information? We could end centuries of conflict just with a single image if you can think of any you might’ve seen.

Lisa: Yeah, and good luck getting people to believe us. You, or me, or even that damn book. There’s hobos on sidewalks spouting the same shit we are—and they’ll trust us for what? Cuz we’re young? They’ll just lump us in with the rest of them! And what good is worrying about other people’s souls if we can’t even save our own? Bruce’s name is in that book, and he might die if we don’t hurry… I know he’s an asshole, but I don’t want him to die…

 

Trent sees that Lisa’s crying. He pulls her in and comforts her—but he’s just as scared as her, really.

 

Cut to a Bruce's room. His phone lays on a pillow, displaying a photo of Lisa. Bruce is lying in bed, and he's... serving himself. Then he gets a call, and he gets out of bed and paces around as he takes it. It’s Trent, who's worried because Bruce didn’t show up at school. Bruce says “everything fine, I've just been... coping, is all.” Trent tells him that he, Lisa, and Natalie are eating out that night at “El Pecado,” a Mexican restaurant, and he wants him to tag along. Bruce says “okay.” Trent then tells Bruce that he wants him to bring the book because they’ve talked about it and decided that they want to destroy the book. Bruce says “wait, really?” and Trent goes on to say that since Bruce still has his name in the book, it’s in his best interest to destroy the book so he can be kept safe. Bruce says “yeah, yeah, I agree with that.” Trent asks if he’ll see him then, and Bruce says “yeah.” Bruce hangs up and peers over at a table. The book sits on the table—perhaps it’s staring back at him…

 

Cut to Natalie in her house, who’s telling her family that Lisa is waiting for her on the curb. Her little siblings are sad about it and want her to stay, but she says she has to go. Before Natalie exits through the front door, her mom (Kimberly Elise) says that she wishes she didn’t have to go because she was going to make dinner for everyone that night. Natalie tells her that this was last minute and that she apologizes. Then her mom tells her that she’s worried because two other students at the high school recently died in accidents and she wants to know she'll be safe. Natalie tells her she’ll be fine and that there’s nothing to worry about. Her mom says okay, and Natalie runs out to Lisa’s car.

 

Cut to Bruce sitting alone at a booth in El Pecado. He squeezes lemon juice into his water. Then he looks. Lisa, Trent, and Natalie have arrived at the same time, and they’re amazed that Bruce is the first one to arrive. They sit down with him, and Natalie asks him if he brought the book. Bruce sighs and fibs that he forgot it at home. The others are disappointed and ask him why he’d forget it. Bruce lies again, saying that it must’ve slipped his mind. Trent tells that he should be more concerned that his name’s in the scary death book. Lisa shrugs her shoulders.

 

Lisa: Well, we’re trying to help you, but if you don’t want help getting your name out, then it’s not as urgent for us to destroy it since our names aren’t in the book.

 

Bruce smirks. The others see this and shudder.

 

Lisa: Bruce? What’s so funny?

Bruce: Today, I decided I write your names in the book myself. And don’t worry, Trent—I also fixed that spelling error of yours.

Lisa: Why the fuck would you do that?

Bruce: Face it. There’s not a man, woman, or child on this earth who doesn’t deserve to burn in hell. There’s no one better than anyone else.

Natalie: So you would condemn your friends? Are you insane?

Bruce: Friends? (He scoffs.) You were never my friends. We have classes together, I meet you guys through Rory, you take me out on one joyride, and all of a sudden that equates to friendship? Give me a break.

 

Trent slams a fist on the table. People in the restaurant stare and listen. Lisa stands up and paces around.

 

Trent: All the texts, all the scriptures, went out of their way to voice the dangers of hell, and you would make a mockery of it! As if people’s souls are a fucking game! How dare you!

Bruce: You talk as if this concerns everyone. We’re the only names in the book. It’s only about us.

Lisa: THIS CONCERNS EVERYONE, Bruce! Our friends, our families—everyone in this fucking restaurant! You think you have the authority to do whatever you want with people! FUCK YOU!

 

Natalie tells everyone that she knows where Bruce lives—she did a project with him once. Lisa tells Natalie to follow her outside, as she plans to drive to Bruce’s place herself while using Natalie for directions. They storm out, and Trent runs after them, asking them to wait. We cut to a shot of Bruce drinking water while side-eyeing the others. Cut outside as the girls get in Lisa’s car—Trent yells “DON’T GO YET,” but Lisa speeds off, and we see Trent standing from the car’s trunk window.

 

Lisa drives as fast as she can down the roads. By now’s the night is pitch black. Natalie tells Lisa to take a left, and she takes a left.

 

Lisa: We’re getting that book. And we’re tossing it in a fucking bonfire.

Natalie: Lisa?

Lisa: What?

Natalie: I think you’re driving too fast—

 

—she says as a car’s headlights appear in the window behind her. The car smashes into them on Natalie’s side. Lisa loses control of the car and crashes into a tree.

 

They wait for a moment. Natalie asks Lisa if she’s okay. Lisa says she’s okay and asks Natalie the same. Natalie says that her arm hurts. Then the tree they hit creaks. They freeze. Lisa’s eyes widen—she tells Natalie that the tree is falling toward them, and she tells Natalie to get out of the car. Lisa gets out; unfortunately, the car jammed Natalie’s door in a way where she can’t get out. The tree begins to fall. Natalie reaches out and screams “LISA!”, and then the tree falls on the car, crushing and killing Natalie.

 

Lisa: Natalie?

 

No response. Lisa falls to her knees in shock.

 

Cut to Natalie’s photo and casket at her memorial service. Cut to the auditorium of people. Cut to Lisa, who’s standing backstage with a piece of paper in her hand. She’s clearly traumatized at this point. Then Natalie’s mom steps in front of her.

 

Natalie’s Mom: What do you think you’re doing?

Lisa: I’m—I wrote a eulogy for Natalie, and—

 

Natalie’s mom snatches the paper and tears it to shreds.

 

Natalie’s Mom: There won’t be any eulogies from you…

Lisa: What?

 

Natalie’s mom slaps Lisa across the face.

 

Lisa: Why are you doing this?

Natalie’s Mom: If you weren’t speeding, my daughter wouldn’t be dead.

Lisa: But I was Natalie’s friend!

Natalie’s Mom: And as far as I’m concerned, you’re the reason why she’s dead. Get out. Now.

 

We get a slow-motion shot of Lisa turning away from Natalie’s mom. Cut to Trent, who’s in the audience, as he sees Lisa walking out, and he decides to walk out to get her.

 

Trent meets Lisa outside and asks her what’s wrong. Lisa trembles.

 

Lisa: She’s suffering and there’s nothing I can do to save her.

 

Lisa cries in Trent’s arms.

 

Cut to Bruce in his house. He walks into his living room. His mom's watching TV. "Hey, Mom," he says to her. "Hey, Bruce," she replies. She just watches TV, she doesn't really mind him. Bruce stares at her in anger, and then he walks into the kitchen. Rory, expressionless and naked (nothing shown), is standing in the kitchen staring at him. "Hey, Rory," Bruce says to the soul. He opens the pantry, grabs two bags of chips, and asks Rory which one he should choose. Rory refrains from answering. Bruce shrugs and chooses Dill Pickle. Walking to his room, he passes by Caitlin--also a naked soul. "Hey Caitlin," he says. He enters his room and closes the door. Caitlin and Rory exchange expressionless glances.

 

Cut to Bruce's room. Caitin and Rory walk closer to him. On his desk, two books are spread out--the evil book, and a yearbook he's using as a reservoir of names to write into the book. He notices them. They stare--no, glare at him. "What?" he asks. They refrain from answering. "I asked you a question!" he yells. Again, they refrain from answering. He stands and storms back and forth, delivering a sorrow-tinged monologue.

 

Bruce: Don't give me those looks! You were the ones who put your names in the book, not me! And don't act like I was supposed to prevent this for you--you were never really there for me when you were alive. "How's your day today," "what's on your mind today"--you didn't say any of that shit! You're like my mother who watches TV all day, and you're like my father who's drank himself to death, so why should I fucking care about your whereabouts?

 

Caitlin and Rory barely react at all. Bruce peers over to the book--a single two-page spread is filled to the brim with names. He freaks out. He begins to mumble that he didn't mean to write that many names. He tries to erase the names with a huge pink eraser. None of the names are coming off. He paces around and begins to panic. His mom walks in, wondering what's going on, wondering if he's okay. Then to his horror, she walks to the desk and looks at the two books. She's discovering too much. Bruce's mom slowly comes to a realization--then Bruce swings a baseball bat at her head. She falls down--dead. The bat falls out of his hands; he falls to his knees, assesses his deed, and weeps. Caitlin and Rory stand over him. Bruce becomes red-faced.

 

Bruce: This is all Lisa's fault! She reacted the way she did... In the lot... Pushed my gaze to the fucking gravel... I'll make her pay for what she's done! I swear! I swear on my fucking damned life...

 

Bruce continues to weep.

 

Cut to Lisa laying down on her bed. Her mom knocks on the door and tells her that a friend is there to see her. Lisa doesn’t answer. “I’m coming in,” Trent says as he walks into the room. Lisa greets him. Trent sits down. “Your mom says you haven’t eaten anything in days,” Trent says, and Lisa says she isn’t hungry. Then Trent tells her that while he knows how she’s feeling, they still must destroy the book. Lisa tells him she doesn’t think she deserves it.

 

Trent: You don’t deserve it? Why’s that?

Lisa: It’s not fair, Trent.

Trent: What’s not fair?

Lisa: It’s not fair that we can go to Heaven and Rory, Caitlin, and Natalie have to spend eternity in Hell. I’ve already seen those flames. I’ve already felt their torture. But thinking back at the pain, they even felt like something I deserve.

Trent: Lisa, no. If you talk that way, you’re admitting Bruce is right. You’re letting his narrative win.

 

Lisa glances away.

 

Trent: Look. You’re someone who cares about others. You’re not afraid to speak your mind. You have an attention to detail—I know that much from your paintings. Bruce might be right that no one deserves Heaven—all the texts have high standards—but if Heaven didn’t have you in it, then it’d be missing a pretty superb citizen. I also have a hunch that wherever Rory is, wherever Caitlin is, wherever Natalie is—they’d all want you in Heaven. And I’m not just saying this cuz my name’s in there too. I promise.

 

Lisa smiles and thanks him. Then Lisa gets a phone call and takes it. It’s from Bruce. “You have a lot of nerve calling me,” she grumbles. Then she listens in—Bruce is saying something worth listening to. “Okay… Yeah… Yeah, I’ll be there… Goodbye, Bruce…” She hangs up. Trent asks her what he said. She stares at him and, after some hesitation, she says, “He’s made an offer.”

 

Cut to outside the high school at night. Trent pulls up to a parking space with Lisa riding shotgun. Trent asks, almost in disbelief, if Bruce really told Lisa to sneak in alone. Lisa confirms this. Trent sighs. He gives her a swiss army knife and says that if he refuses to give up the book or tries to attack her, she should consider using it to defend himself. Lisa says she doesn’t want to have to kill him. Trent replies by saying that the situation they’re in is bigger than Bruce’s well-being. Trent also gives Lisa a flashlight and tells her to text him if she needs him to come inside. Lisa gets out, and Trent sits alone in wait.

 

Lisa sneaks into a classroom through one of the windows. She sneaks through the halls with her flashlight on and comes across a section of the hall that has its lights on. She turns off her flashlight and walks into that corridor. Bruce is standing around there, aloof yet poised, the book tucked beneath his arm. The following interaction is filmed framing them with the medium shot size.

 

Lisa: I think you chose a bad place for this meeting.

Bruce: Oh? And why’s that?

Lisa: There’s security cameras all over the place. Whatever happens here, it’s immortalized.

Bruce: You’re the one who said this concerns everyone. Let them see.

Lisa: Give me the book. Please. Both for my sake and for yours. There has to be a part of you that doesn’t want to go to Hell. Right?

 

Bruce smirks.

 

Bruce: I’ll gladly hand it over, Lisa. But I want something in return.

Lisa: What?

 

Bruce stares at her longingly. Lisa figures it out.

 

Lisa: Are you kidding me?

Bruce: Lie with me once and I give you the book. Simple as that.

Lisa: You’re disgusting! You’re asking me to bargain eternal destiny for… No, no, no, no, no…

Bruce: Lisa! Time is running out! You know how many names I’ve written in here? You don’t do it, you don’t get the book, and all of these souls are on your hands, not mine!

 

Lisa backs away.

 

Lisa: You’re a monster...

Bruce: No. I have become your savior! I'm saving you from your fate! I'm saving you from having to blame yourself for all these people's fates! This is your chance to right all of those wrongs! Please, Lisa!

 

Lisa flees from Bruce, and he pursues her. She stops in a dark hallway to turn on her flashlight. His dark figure sees her light and chases it. She turns a corner and runs down a hallway—then she ducks into a girl’s bathroom and turns off her flashlight. She whips out her phone and opens it—she made the text message “call the police” to send to Trent in advance, and she presses the ‘send’ button. She almost believes Bruce passed by the bathroom—then he flips the room’s light switch, signaling his presence. “Let’s see who knows better now, Lisa!” he says as he finds her in the stall. He pins her to a wall and tears her shirt by its collar, but she kicks him in the balls and sprints away.

 

“I’ll kill you!” Bruce screams as Lisa runs down the hallway. He then finds the flashlight she dropped and picks it up. Lisa follows the red exit signs, the only light in the building, and stumbles around because she doesn’t know where to go. Then the flashlight shines on her; she turns around in horror. “I’ll beat you to death with the book, you fucking bitch!” he shouts.

 

Lisa sprints away and runs into the gymnasium. The moonlight cascades through the windows high above the ground. Bruce bursts into the room, and she looks around in a frenzy. She sees a basketball cart from across the gym, stocked with basketballs. We get a tracking shot of Lisa running across the gym with Bruce chasing after her. Lisa then reaches the cart and begins madly pelting Bruce with basketballs, missing with some but nailing him with most of them. With Bruce caught off guard, she takes out her swiss army knife and stabs him many times. Bruce falls to the ground. Breathing weakly, he holds up a hand, squints his eyes, and pretends like he’s holding a bust of Lisa in his palm. He grins.

 

Cut to Lisa running out of the school through the front door. She’s holding the book. Trent sees her and runs to her. Lisa shows him the book—they’ve succeeded. They embrace each other as the lights of emergency vehicle cars illuminate the scene.

 

A shot of Trent and Lisa sinks below the ground. And it sinks, and it sinks, until we’re in a reddish cavern. The moans of the damned populate the soundscape. An Extinguisher stands in front of a black cauldron, holding a pitchfork in his hand. Bruce, naked and sitting on a stone bench, looks around the cavern.

 

Bruce: This isn't anything like the Hell I imagined. I thought there'd be parties, I thought there'd be fun... If I had known, I might've...

 

The Extinguisher wastes no time. He drives the pitchfork through Bruce’s chest. Bruce howls in pain. The Extinguisher lifts the pitchfork in the air, and Bruce’s body with it. Bruce stares in horror as his body hovers from the stone bench to above the cauldron.

 

Bruce: Please. I'll embrace others. I won't blame others for my mistakes. Just give me a second chance, I'll be good, I promise. Please. PLEASE!

 

The Extinguisher lowers Bruce into the cauldron. Bruce screams as the water boils, and he is pushed underneath the surface. The Extinguisher steps away to exchange its pitchfork for a giant soup ladle, and Bruce emerges screaming Bloody Mary, and we see his skin and flesh being melted off of his body. The camera dollies out as the Extinguisher stirs the cauldron with solemn resolve.

 

Fade to black. Fade in on a fireplace in Trent’s house. The fire burns sturdily. Trent and Lisa stand before it. Trent tells her that the worst that can happen is that the book can’t be destroyed by any means at all, or that the book’s evil has some sort of countermeasure in place. Lisa tells him it’s a risk she’s willing to take. She tosses the book into the fire. To their delight, the fire eats away at the book, burning it to a crisp. Trent and Lisa watch with bittersweet smiles on their faces.

 

Cut to Lisa in her art class. Everyone else is painting. She still has a blank canvas in front of her. She takes a paintbrush and paints the first stroke. Then she paints another, and another, and another.

 

Cut to Trent at his work desk, writing in his notebook. He says aloud that he’s now certain the question of “which religion is correct” may very well be unprovable—but the knowledge of an afterlife gives him more than enough reason to treat every day like it’s an important one. He ends his journal entry by saying, “here’s hoping as many people see Heaven as possible.” Then he sets the pen down and steps away.

 

Cut to Lisa (age 18) graduating from high school. Cut to Lisa (age 25) running a marathon. Cut to Lisa (age 31) feeding the homeless. Cut to Lisa (age 36) and her husband pushing their children on playground swings. Cut to Lisa (age 42) tracing a finger through a Bible and taking notes. Cut to Lisa (age 47) cheering one of her kids on at a soccer game. Cut to Lisa (age 54) and her family enjoying a movie in the living room. Cut to Lisa (age 61) crying as she and her husband wave goodbye to one of their children, who is driving away from the nest. Cut to Lisa (age 70) and her husband going on a hike. Cut to Lisa (age 77) painting a landscape portrait at a beach. Cut to Lisa (85) and her husband in an old folks’ apartment as they’re visited by her children (and their children) during Christmas. Cut to Lisa (age 92) on her deathbed, surrounded by loved ones.

 

Cut to a large brown door in a dark void. Bright light and wisps of clouds seep through the crack and bottom of the door. Lisa (age 18) stumbles toward the door. She opens the door and is amazed. Before her, there is a sky, and there are white clouds floating in the sky—and there’s a white-robed figure in the distance, soaring with wings like eagles. Lisa gazed in wonder. Then the winged figure swoops in and reaches out to her.

 

Could it be? It’s Natalie! But wasn’t her name in the book?

 

Cut to black. "Where Will You Go" by The National plays during the end credits.

 

Edited by SLAM!
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THE TALE OF A

GUINEA PIG

 

Studio: Phoenix Fire Entertainment

Director: Paul Hoen

Release Date: October 18th Y8

Genre: Comedy

Rating: PG, for rude humor, some suggestive material and mild peril

Format: 2D

Budget: $7 million

Theater Count: 3.072

Runtime: 1 hour and 41 minutes

Original SongPig on Me by Eric Prydz, a parody of Prydz's own Call on Me where the word "call" is replaced by "pig"

 

Cast:

- Drake Bell as Andy Jones

- Emily Osment as Joanne Tucker

- Cristina Vee as the babysitter

- and Vanessa Bayer as the voice of Cersei

 

Plot: Andy Jones (Drake Bell) is a down on his luck call center worker who hates everything about Tuesdays, for no apparent reason. Not Mondays, no... Tuesdays.

 

Until he one day, he decides to make his own Tuesdays better by going out to buy a pet on a Tuesday - and he decides to buy a brand new guinea pig. He buys a female guinea pig and names her Cersei, as Cersei is his favorite Game of Thrones character (he's a villains guy). It turns out, however, that this pet is special: she can talk (Vanessa Bayer, voice). Obviously, this freaks Andy out like no tomorrow, and he wonders if he's going crazy, but Cersei just tells him to ignore it and feed her. He effectively becomes a slave to Cersei, spending long portions of his days feeding her, cleaning up her space and petting her. He's even forced to hire a babysitter (Cristina Vee) to take care of Cersei while he's out in his job. Cersei laughs evilly.

 

One day, when he comes back from work, he decides not to give Cersei attention, which pisses Cersei off. He instead heads off to spend some time with Joanne Tucker (Emily Osment), his best friend. The two really love to go to movies, arcades and stuff like that. But when he comes back to his house, it turns out that Cersei is gone. How did she escape? Who knows! He calls Joanne immediately and the two head to action.

 

It is revealed later on that Cersei is in the babysitter's house, and she's maliciously happy with her change. However, she soon becomes horrified when she finds out that the babysitter wants to put Cersei in a science project of the babysitter's to run a hamster wheel that creates light energy - the babysitter was gonna buy a hamster for this, but Cersei will do. Cersei runs away from the babysitter and slapstick ensues. Eventually, Andy and Joanne find Cersei in the babysitter's apartment, and more slapstick ensues, until the babysitter is finally defeated by the power of fresh lettuce (Cersei's favorite).

 

It all ends with Andy admitting to Cersei that he's learned to like villains a little less thanks to this, while Cersei learns to appreciate those who treat her good better. Andy admits that taking care of Cersei is too hard, so Joanne offers to adopt her instead, and Andy accepts. Cersei and Joanne go on happily, while Andy heads off to a night club, to dance the night away, to the sound of the movie's original song, Pig on Me by Eric Prydz. The end!

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Dreams (Video Game) | Know Your Meme

 

 

Based OnDreams, by Media Molecule

 

Studio: Phoenix Fire Entertainment, in collaboration with Amblin Entertainment, PlayStation Originals, Media Molecule and Phoenix Fire Artstyles

Release Date: December 13th Y8

Genre: Anthology/Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Action/Comedy/Drama/Horror/Live-Action & Animation

Rating: PG-13, for intense sequences of violence and horror, some language, rude humor and disturbing images

Format: 2D, 3D

Budget: $100 million

Theater Count: 3.563

Runtime: 1 hour and 50 minutes

 

Directors:

- Jennifer Yuh Nelson: prologue; A Greasy MealOverdrive

- Jake Kasdan: Slayer Scrolls

- Mike Flanagan: Horror in Chernobyl

- Patty Jenkins: Taken by the Rust

Producers: Steven Spielberg, Mark Healey

Screenwriters: Liz Hannah, Stephany Folsom

Cinematography: Claudio Miranda

Original Score: John Williams

Original SongDream High by Eels (description in the plot)

 

Major Cast:

- Prologue:

  • Michelle Pfeiffer as the doctor
  • Unknowns

- Slayer Scrolls:

  • Jason Statham as Chuckese
  • Liam Cunningham as the bartender
  • Kristofer Hijvu as the guard
  • Iain De Caestecker as the drunkard
  • Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as
    Spoiler

    the Slayer

- A Greasy Meal:

  • Lily James as Charlie (voice)
  • Tiffany Haddish as Barbara (voice)
  • Tara Strong as the waitress (voice)

- Horror in Chernobyl:

  • Daniel Henney as John Lee
  • Olga Kurylenko as Michele

- Overdrive:

  • Sasha Lane as Aeris
  • Vera Farmiga as Valencia

- Taken by the Rust:

  • Joana Ribeiro as the woman

 

Plot Summary: A doctor presents to a group of film students a machine that allows to turn their imagination into films.

 

Plothttps://docs.google.com/document/d/1itPxtS8fQkDmB_KY_kFEVuBijbl0bFXjlVT9raa2O40/edit?usp=sharing

 

Special thanks to @Reddroast for his early opinion on the film.

Edited by MCKillswitch123
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Out of Order: The Decline of the Arcade

Studio: New Journey Pictures Nonfiction

Director: James Swirsky and Lisanne Pajot

Genre: Documentary

Release Date: October 11th, Y8

Theater Count: 1,500

MPAA Rating: PG for Some Language

Budget: $3 Million

Runtime: 1 hr 32 min

 

This film chronicles the past, present, and speculated future of arcades as a viable business.

 

Spoiler

 

The opening scene is footage of a moving company wheeling machines out of an arcade. The arcade owner is visibly heartbroken, but she (yes, a female arcade owner) knows that the day would have eventually arrived.

 

We get introduced to the historians and arcade owners being interviewed quickly after the opening, and they talk about the history of the arcade--but first, they have to talk about pinball. Pinball machines were essentially the first arcade machines, and they were so popular that New York put a ban on machines for 30 years to protect the nickels and dimes of children. One historian jokes about how companies like Activision and EA are nickeling and diming all the time and nobody's sneezing. Another historian comments about the satisfying nature on pinball--the click of the levers and the rolling of the ball, and all the times it bounces off the obstacles.

 

They talk about the rise of computer video games and talk about the first machine--Computer Space, built by Bushnell and Ted Dabney in 1971--and talk about when the first arcades opened. They discuss in-depth titles such as PongSpace InvadersDonkey KongPac-Man, and Galaga. Conversations about *the platformer*--like Shinobi, for example--also happen. Then they talk about how the Nintendo Entertainment System and other early consoles threatened to brush against arcades, but ultimately didn't for a long time because arcades were still seen as a place to hang out.

 

Conversations about the fighting arcade game happens, and they talk about Street FighterTekkenVirtua Fighter, and Mortal Kombat among other titles. They say that those machines were very popular because of the competitive nature of the games. They also talk about rail gun shooters such as Time Crisis and The House of the Dead, citing them as being innovators in that same multiplayer sphere.

 

Then the PlayStation 2 and Xbox hit. Both of those systems threaten arcades for their own reasons. The PS2's sales were through the roof--absolutely unprecedented--so more people were playing games at home than ever before. Then Microsoft comes out with Xbox Live, which allows gamers to play a multiplayer game such as Halo in their own homes. It's in the 2000s where arcade games recognize the need to adapt. It's revealed that serious adapting comes from the vehicular arcade machine, which was already around thanks to games like Cruis'n, and now there were NASCAR racing game machines too, but seats begin to be modeled after not just cars--motorcycles, skateboards, snowboards, snowmobiles, even a kayak!

 

And then during the 2000s innovation phase of the doc, they talk about Dance Dance Revolution. The historians explain that people were flocking to arcades to play Dance Dance Revolution. We get footage of people playing and footage of the game itself. It's so popular that Konami can't make machines for America fast enough, so companies begin illegally importing machines from Japan. 

 

Then the discussion about the decline starts. The historians explain that arcades just couldn't innovate fast enough--ideas were being spread thin. New consoles increased the viability of at-home gameplay with solid family options like Guitar Hero and anything on the Wii, and online connectivity was bringing the serious gamers closer together, reducing the need for people to go to arcades. And then the market crash of 2008 didn't help matters, either. Historians lament that arcades hoping to get by were turning to more and more machines based on underwhelming licenses--Guitar Hero, Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja, and the like. You'd think they'd be as appealing as other choices, but they weren't. Slowly but surely, machines disappear from the average family arcade until those arcades are shells of their former selves.

 

There's also conversations about arcades in Japan, and how those arcades are still thriving. Arcades are seen as a communal experience in Japan, and there's a lot of machines that connect to each other because they're meant to be played by many people at once.

 

But the wide video game community seems to have moved on to eSports. There's talk about how big tournaments generate huge amounts of revenue for the industry, and about how modern arcades now include computer rooms to allow teams to play games like League of Legends and Counter-Strike together.

 

But for the female arcade owner from the beginning, it's a shame, but limited interest in her arcade now means that she's out of business. She shrugs and says that she'll land on her feet with another business--the hard work trying to market her arcade to uninterested consumers will certainly translate well to another small business venture. She's still sad about it, though. Her arcade was a huge part of her life, and it's as if that piece of her is being removed.

 

The historians and arcade owners being interviewed all give the general opinion that gamers and non-gamers all still appreciate communal forms of computer entertainment. It's just that times change, people's habits change, and the economy changes, too. It's true, however, that many will look back fondly when remembering the time they spent in arcades.

 

 

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Recompense
Studio: New Journey Pictures
Director: Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire
Genre: Action/Thriller
Release Date: March 8th, Y8
Theater Count: 2,765
MPAA Rating: R for Language and Violence
Budget: $20 Million
Runtime: 1 hr 38 min

 

Main Cast
Kingsley Ben-Adir as Eddie
Sam Heughan as Leonard
Gwendoline Christie as Mary
Tahar Rahim as Ishmael
with Nazanin Boniadi as Joni
and Ioan Gruffudd as Giles

 

Spoiler

Mary is the prime minister of England, and Eddie and Leonard are her bodyguards. We get scenes of their chemistry together, and then Mary gives a speech responding to increased amounts of immigration to England as well as the recent influx of refugees.

 

Ishmael, a member of a group of British terrorists, hides away in one of the buildings, aiming a sniper rifle at Mary. Beads of sweat drip down Ishmael's face. He fires, but misses, causing a panic as Eddie and Leonard lead Mary out of harm's way. Ishmael packs up the rifle and attempts to escape, but police flood into the building. They corner him, but Ishmael runs to a window. The police put their guns away and try to convince Ishmael not to jump. Ishmael looks back and forth at the police and at the street down below. Tearfully, he decides not to jump and surrenders to the police, who cuff and take him forcefully.

 

Eddie and Leonard exchange quips to try and calm Mary down, but Mary's shaken up about it. Mary tells that she wants them to find the people behind the assassination attempt. Eddie and Leonard promise Mary they'll see to it.

 

Cut to Ishmael in the interrogation room. Eddie and Leonard walk in and sit down. Leonard tells Ishmael to cooperate because it'd be easier for everyone. Ishmael's silence speaks volumes. Behind the glass, Mary smokes a cigarette and watches intently; Giles, a police officer, stands in the room with her. Eddie and Leonard exchange glances. Then Eddie speaks to Ishmael in Arabic. This catches Ishmael off guard. Ishmael slowly but surely gives Eddie and Leonard information, with Eddie acting as an interpreter for Leonard.

 

With information about a terrorist organization dubbed Rabbit's Foot mostly comprised of radical Islamic terrorists, Mary reassigns her bodyguards to a division that hunts down terrorists in England. Eddie and Leonard resolve to lead a team of police officers to find and capture members of the organization before they can commit more crimes.

 

When they're off duty (Leonard quipping to Eddie that they'll catch the bastards soon enough as they walk to their cars), Eddie goes to his apartment, sets out his prayer mat, and prays. Joni, his wife, walks in. When he finishes, he gives her a big hug. Joni tells him she was worried about him. Eddie doesn't doubt that. In bed, Eddie shares his conflicted emotions with Joni, telling her that he wishes people would voice their grievances in a more diplomatic way. Joni tells him that there's always going to be people in the bottom of the well who see violence as their only ladder. She sleeps while Eddie contemplates.

 

We cut to a police raid led by Eddie and Leonard where the find three members of Rabbit's Foot in a dingy apartment building. The police march up the stairwells while the terrorists are playing cards. Gunfire occurs, and a few policemen die. Giles kills two of them, and the third one rushes in to attack, but stops as if he's surprised to see Giles. Giles mouths "I'm sorry" and shoots him. Back in jail, Ishmael gets a letter in Arabic telling him that those three people are dead, and he sinks against the wall and cries.

 

Mary then congratulates Eddie and Leonard on a successful attack against the terrorism in England. Later, Eddie and Leonard get into a conversation, and Leonard suggests that the terrorists deserved to die for what they did or what they would've done. Eddie disagrees, saying that he would've given them life in prison. Leonard chuckles and says that he wouldn't wish life in prison on anyone--death saves them a lot of pain and heartache. Eddie retorts that they're still human beings. Leonard turns to him, asks "Are they?", and walks off.

 

Giles, in his police uniform, carries files into Mary's office. He presents what the police have been working on--they've tracked terrorists and found where they're hiding. Mary asks him if he expects a knighthood for his work. Giles says "no ma'am." Mary rambles about how some have asked her for a knighthood after doing work for her. She can't blame them for misremembering, or perhaps they're joking, but being the prime minister doesn't make her royalty all of a sudden. She's a duly elected representative of the people and, hence, is more similar to the common citizen than she is to the queen. But if people see her as capable of knighthoods, she surmises, then she must be doing an excellent job. "Off you go," she says with a smile. Giles exits.

 

Out on the sidewalk, Giles puts his phone up to his ear and tells who he's calling that the documents have been distributed. He says this in Arabic. He finishes the phone call, peers around to see if any eyes are on him, and disperses into a bustling crowd of people.

 

Cut to Joni buying groceries. She holds a lemon up to the light and feels its skin. Then adds it to a bag of lemons she wants to purchase. Cut to Joni walking up to the cash register, and the cashier freezes at first. Joni gives her an "am I really what you think I am" look, and the cashier apologizes and starts bagging the items. Joni puts the groceries in her car and sits in the parking lot for a minute. She scrolls through news articles on her phone, all of which have headlines about the assassination attempt and the police raids, Joni rests her head against the headrest and ponders.

 

Another raid happens. Eddie asks Leonard where Deputy Giles is, and Leonard tells him that he said he's on sick leave. The squad raids the building, but they don't find anyone. Then they get ambushed by terrorists, and a lot of officers die. One of the officers tells Eddie and Leonard to escape while they still can because there's too many terrorists in the room, so Eddie and Leonard get to the roof and do some parkour across the rooftops. In the building, a head terrorist tells some goons to find Eddie and Leonard.

 

Eddie and Leonard rush down the stairwell of one of the buildings. They resolve to split up, so Eddie hurries down a subway staircase while Leonard ducks into some alleyways. One terrorist saw them do that, and the terrorist decides to follow Eddie down into the subway.

 

Giles rushes to where Mary is and frantically tells her that they're under attack, so him and some security guards lead her to a limousine, but Giles shoots the guards and shouts at the driver, who's a terrorist, to drive away, effectively kidnapping the prime minister.

 

Eddie looks over his shoulder and sees he's being followed. He starts running and dips into the crowd. The terrorist sprints, pushing and shoving his way through the crowd so he can keep up with Eddie. Eddie reaches the subway train, which hasn't taken off yet. Him and the terrorist step on and off the train because Eddie wants to be the opposite of where the terrorist is. 

They end up being inside the train when the doors close, and the terrorist shoots Eddie in the chest. He falls to the ground, and the passengers scream. The terrorist marches toward Eddie, but he struggles to walk as train takes off. Some passengers take the opportunity to pin the terrorist down and kick the gun away. To the terrorist's horror, Eddie gets up and takes off his suit jacket, revealing a bulletproof vest. Eddie pulls his gun. "I'm sorry," he says in Arabic. Headshot. Eddie drops the gun and backs away. The passengers are staring at him. He shows his badge and says they have nothing to fear.

 

Leonard scrambles through the alleyways, and a walkie-talkie tells him that the prime minister has been kidnapped. He tells the walkie-talkie that he'll be on it as soon as he's in the clear. Leonard then finds Giles in the alleyway. Leonard runs to him and asks if he's all right. Giles reaches toward his holster. Giles' eyes exude hostility.

 

Leonard figures it out and ducks into a warehouse. Inside the warehouse, Leonard catches his breath and thinks about what to do. Giles walks in, and Leonard ambushes him and pins him down. On the ground, Giles hisses that Leonard is making a mistake by blindly following Mary because her policies on the refugee crisis are prohibitive and because she's content with letting the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Leonard chastises Giles for using terrorism as a way to make thay statement. Giles says it's a means to an end. Leonard reminds Giles that they both swore an oath. Giles headbutts Leonard, incapacitating him. Giles stands up and considers shooting Leonard, but says he won't because he's better than the people serving him. Then Giles escapes.

 

Joni sees on the news that Mary's been kidnapped and immediately calls Eddie. Eddie, who's gearing up with a SWAT team, tells her he's fine, but he needs to rescue Mary ASAP. Joni pleads for him to be careful.

 

Then Leonard rushes in to gear up as well, and he tells Eddie that Giles is the mastermind pulling together the terrorists. Eddie is disgusted by this, and he monologues about how it's horrible that Giles is essentially using a marginalized community to serve his own needs. Leonard shrugs his shoulders and says that the terrorists would've wanted to do this to Mary even if Giles wasn't involved. Eddie shakes his head and says he doesn't think they would've done this alone, and that Giles is the catalyst because he was able to use his influence to gather the terrorists together and bestow them with equipment and knowledge. Leonard chuckles in disbelief, and Eddie shouts at him, telling him to LISTEN--to really LISTEN--because if no one listens, no one can help each other. Leonard gets close and says that he does listen--to the sounds of gunshots and cries for help--he follows those sounds, and he's not going to let a colleague tell him he's wrong for running to the battlefield just because most gunshots come from a certain ethnic group. Eddie retorts, asking him to go after the ones who gave them their guns. Leonard nods and puts a hand on Eddie's shoulder, saying "I knew I liked you." Eddie brushes Leonard's hand away.

 

Then an officer bursts in and says they've tracked Giles and found that he's headed to a valley house in the hills, and everyone finishes gearing up and spills out of the room.

 

Giles drives up to the valley house and walls inside. Terrorists are holding guns in the basement where Mary is tied up in a chair. Giles asks Mary to tell him why he should keep her alive. Mary tells Giles that what he's doing is fruitless--the people will have the same conversations as they did before, and they'll have the same opinions as they did before, and they'll replace her with another prime minister, and everything will progress as normal because in the modern era, issues have become much smaller in comparison to the issues from a century ago with the world wars, and she believes that while the leader can never hope to please everyone, they will lead the country forward in incremental ways regardless of politics. Giles says "let's test that theory of yours" and shoots her in the head, killing her. A terrorist screams at Giles saying that they thought they were supposed to hold her for ransom, and Giles kills that terrorist as well. Then one of the other terrorists in the room unloads a lot of machine gun bullets onto Giles, killing him.

 

The terrorists become fearful as sirens can be heard. They make a hasty plan to surrender. One terrorist makes a white flag using a t-shirt, a stick, and clothespins. Other terrorists go to the windows of the house, setting up places where they can shoot if need be.

 

Eddie, Leonard, and the SWAT team pull up in police cars and vans. They take cover behind the vehicles because they see that one of the terrorists is waving the flag to surrender. Eddie stands up, sets his gun down, walks closer to the guy with the flag, and asks him where the others are. That's when Leonard and the others notice the men aiming guns from the windows--about four men. We cut to one of the gunmen's view of their gun, which is aimed at Leonard, who has his gun aimed at the terrorist trying to surrender.

 

Eddie asks the terrorist where Mary is. He says that the prime minister is dead. Leonard hears this, grimaces, and shoots the surrendering terrorist. One of the window gunmen shoots and kills Leonard in retaliation, sparking a firefight. Eddie covers his head and ducks down. The policemen who survive the initial burst of gunfighting find an opportunity and storm into the house, rushing past Eddie, who's crouched toward the ground. Eddie snaps out of it, and hurries back to the cars. He sees Leonard's body and closes his eyes; then he grabs a pistol and stumbles into the house. He walks through the house and see that the policemen have killed the terrorists inside. He makes the phone call confirming that the threat has been neutralized, and that the prime minister has been killed.

 

The news channels talk about the prime minister, and it's clear that the world will never be the same after what happened. Joni watches with hands over her mouth. Eddie comes in, and Joni's hug almost tackles him. They hold each other for a long time. Joni pours Eddie a glass of homemade lemonade. Tears trickle down Eddie's cheeks as he chugs the entire glass of lemonade in one sitting.

 

Some time later, Eddie visits Ishmael, who's in prison, and he has a conversation with him in Arabic. He asks Ishmael if he's okay, and he asks him if he wanted to go through with that assassination attempt in the first place, or if he regrets going through with it. Ishmael cries a bit. They press their hands against the glass and stare down in silence. Cut to black.

 

 

Edited by SLAM!
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The Insect God

 

Studio: Fossil Record Productions  

Director: Daniel Ulrich McBroom*

Genre: Science-Fiction/Horror (2D animated)

Release Date: Monday, April 22nd (limited release) Friday, April 26th,(wide release)

Rating: PG-13 (language and violence)

Budget: $8 million 
Theater Count: 1987 (widest release)

Running time: 95 minutes

Principal Cast: 

Tone Loc as Cyxil 

David Pryce* as Fergus Hartman

Susan Morris* as Lindsey Hartman

Harry Richard Milhouse* as Dr. Ken Thorton 

Don Mydas* as Azmyth

Stephan J. Colditz* as P'kokwi Queen

Frank Welker as Maxine.

 

Tagline:  It's their world now. We just live in it. 

 

Summary:

Spoiler

 

A US Navy nuclear submarine, the USS Wilmington, disappears from radar during a routine training exercise in the Molokai Fracture Zone, a deep-sea trench off the coast of Hawaii. Moments before it vanishes into the depths, it sends back a photograph of a monstrous aquatic creature-- resembling a cross between a centipede and a lobster, but as large as an ocean liner-- moving towards it. As scientists and military personnel struggle to decipher the photo, ships and aircraft are sent out to search for the missing submarine. They, too, vanish. 

 

Meanwhile, in the suburbs of North Carolina, a ten-year-old boy named Fergus Hartman makes a truly remarkable discovery. Exploring the woods around his house, he stumbles upon a creature that, by all logic, should not exist-- a five-foot-tall humanoid insect. The giant insect speaks to him, telling him his name is Cyxil, and that he needs help making his way back to the island that was once his home. Fergus vows to help him, with the reluctant assistance of his older sister Lindsey, but all three of them are kidnapped by the US government, who believe they could be the key to finding out what happened to the missing submarine. They believe that Cyxil's species are somehow responsible for the disappearance of ships and airplanes, and they think Fergus is the key to communicating with them.

 

Also brought on board by the government is an ornithologist named Dr. Ken Thorton, who has spent years studying the communication of his pet African gray parrot, Maxine. The government scientists believe this could give them an edge in communicating with these non-human creatures. Fergus, Lindsey, Cyxil, Dr. Thorton, and Maxine are brought onto a ship that takes them to the Molokai Fracture Zone, where they discover a "lost world" hidden in the crater of an old volcano. Entering it, they learn that it has been isolated since the Carboniferous period, over 300 million years ago. It is inhabited by two species of intelligent insects. One are the Drish, the species to which Cyxil belongs. They are a species of simple, non-technological farmers whose lifestyle has remained unchanged for millions of years. The other are the P'kokwi, who are psychologically very different from humans. 

 

The expedition team are immediately attacked by swarms of P'kokwi and their genetically engineered beasts. While they suffer heavy causalties, they also gain valuable intelligence about their new foes when they manage to capture two P'kokwi soldiers alive. They prove to be highly intelligent, able to solve every problem their human captors present them with, but they seem to lack any sort of self-awareness. Everything they do is instinctive-- they are intelligent, yet they lack what humans would recognize as sapience. 

 

The P'kokwi, it turns out, are a hive-mind species who can manipulate genomes as easily as humans control electricity. They have no sense of individuality, and in fact they see species that have individual self-awareness as threats and try to exterminate them with their army of genetically engineered creatures. What follows is an insight on humanity's relationship to nature, and what it means to be an intelligent life form. Fergus wonders is humans can never truly live in harmony with nature, because self-awareness itself is holding us back. From the perspective of the P'Kokwi, self-awareness leads species to waste resources on things like industry and warfare, which the hive-minded P'kokwi see as a threat. 

 

The P'Kokwi have utterly crushed the Drish, and now use them as slaves. The protagonists learn this when they meet Cyxil's old friend Azmith, another Drish. Azmith suggests that the Drish simply do not register any species besides themselves as intelligent. He offers them shelter, but the Drish spot him speaking to Fergus, Lindsey, Dr. Thorton, and Cyxil. This causes them to see him as a traitor, and they attack him and kill him. The heroes are also captured by the P'Kokwi and put on "trial" for humanity's perceived crimes, at which point they are to be fed to a giant labyrinthodont. They manage to escape, except for Dr. Thorton, who is eaten-- along with a P'Kokwi soldier-- by the monster.

 

Upon escaping, they learn of a plan to destroy the hidden crater with a nuclear bomb. Cyxil and Fergus try to warn the government agents that they aren't going to accomplish what they want, but they fail, and the P'kokwe (the titular "Insect Gods") launch an all-out attack on the city of Chicago, with the military powerless to stop them. Fergus desperately attempts to appeal to the P'kokwi Queen, and to explain to her that the humans the P'kokwi are destroying are every bit as intelligent in their own way as the P'kokwi themselves. Finally, he is able to convince the P'kokwi Queen to make an official apology for the things she has done, and tell her followers to stand down. He explains that while humans do terrible things, they also have the potential to improve. 

 

With the three intelligent species now living in harmony, Cyxil stays in the crater as a peacekeeper between humanity, the P'kowki, and the Drish. Fergus and Lindsey return home, along with Maxine. The movie ends with Fergus looking down in the grass in his yard at some insects. 

 

 

 

 

*fictional

Edited by El Squibbonator
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Frankenstein Jr. 

Studio: The Workshop, Inc. 

Based on: Frankenstein Jr.  TV series

Director: Peter Ramsey

Rating: PG (action, thematic elements) 

Producers: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller

Budget: $45 Million

Genre: Action-Adventure/Sci-fi/Comedy 

Release Date: Friday, August 9th

Theater count: 3525

Runtime: 115 minutes

 

Principal Cast: 

Hayden Moss* as Buzz Conroy

Steve Buscemi as Lil' Buddy

Melissa Silverburg* as Jane Conroy

Will Forte as Spencer Shock III/Dr. Shock

Clarissa May Jones* as Liza Conroy 

Nathan Lane** as Don Spectro 

Peter Cullen as Frankenstein Jr. (voice effects) 

 

 

Tagline: Every family has their secrets. Theirs are just a bit bigger. 

 

Plot summary:

Spoiler

The year is 2086. The RoboDyne corporation, headed by the esteemed Spencer Shock III (inspired by the villain "Dr. Shock" from the TV show, but with an appearance based on Elon Musk), is now the largest corporation in America, with its robots employed in every imaginable job. 

 

15-year-old amateur inventor Buzz Conroy lives with his mother, who owns a small restaurant in Civic City. Unfortunately, business has become slow, and to make matters worse Mrs. Conroy has fallen behind on the mortgage. With the bank literally banging down on their door, demanding their due, Buzz decides to submit one of his inventions, a talking monkey-like robot he calls Lil' Buddy, at the RoboDyne Robot Fair. Before Buzz can present Lil' Buddy, RoboDyne police robots arrive and arrest all of the participants-- it turns out the Robot Fair was a sham, organized by Dr. Shock to collect robot designers to work on the robot army he is secretly developing. 

 

At RoboDyne headquarters, Buzz is rescued by a girl named Liza, who takes him to a laboratory hidden in the Rocky Mountains. There, it is revealed that Liza is in fact his long-lost older sister. The laboratory belongs to his father, Professor John Conroy, who has been hiding from civilization for 15 years. Professor Conroy introduces his greatest creation-- a 70-foot-tall robot that Buzz immediately names "Frankenstein Jr." or "Frankie", due to its resemblance to Frankenstein's monster. He is also introduced to Professor Conroy's shifty-looking assistant, Don Spectro (based on Dr. Spectro, another villain from the TV series).

 

The next day, Buzz gets a chance to test out "Frankie"'s power when he pilots the giant robot against Dr. Shock's robot army, which has begun to mobilize against his enemies. Frankenstein Jr. easily wipes the floor with the RoboDyne robots, but when Buzz returns to the hidden base, he discovers that a transmitter has been placed on "Frankie" to track his movements. He tells Liza and Professor Conroy about the transmitter, and they realize that there must be a traitor in their team. They decide to question Don Spectro, but he has already disappeared-- he is actually working for Dr. Shock, relaying information to him about Frankenstein Jr. 

 

Buzz finds this out when, the following day, his father is kidnapped by a gigantic robot with a werewolf-like appearance (a reference to the Wicked Werewolf from the TV series). With no options left, Buzz and Liza leave with "Frankie" to rescue him. 

 

Meanwhile, Dr. Shock tells Professor Conroy about his true plans. He reveals that he wants to use his robot army to take over the world, and his newest creation is the key to this plan. Before he can launch his ultimate attack, however, Buzz, Liza, and "Frankie" arrive. Thinking he can easily defeat "Frankie", Dr. Shock deploys his own giant robot, which he calls the Steel Wolf. Professor Conroy manages to escape as the two robots fight, but the Steel Wolf effortlessly overpowers Frankenstein Jr. 

 

With little power remaining, Buzz and Liza activate "Frankie"'s only remaining weapon, the Lightning Arc Cannon, which successfully subdues the Steel Wolf. Dr. Shock survives, but gloats that he wills still win in the end, because he can publicly claim that the Conroys and Frankenstein Jr. were the ones trying to take over the world, and he was simply stopping them. To his horror, he realizes that Lil' Buddy-- the wisecracking robot monkey Buzz built at the beginning of the movie-- has recorded everything he said, and, Buzz has used Frankie's antenna to broadcast it to the world at large. 

 

Dr. Shock is arrested, and the Conroys and Frankenstein Jr. are hailed as heroes. As the movie ends, a gigantic brain-like alien (a reference to the original series episode "The Alien Brain from Outer Space") approaches Earth, and the Conroys and Frankenstein Jr. prepare to battle it. 

 

*fictional

** Using the same sort of voice he used for Preed in Titan A.E.

 

 

Edited by El Squibbonator
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17 minutes ago, El Squibbonator said:

I'm trying to find a good slot on the calendar for a PG-rated animated sci-fi movie. For reference, the movie is from a major studio and has a $65 million budget. 

 

I suggest July 3rd for a 5-day "fourth of July" weekend; any date in August would also be a great choice. 

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FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST

-- A Tale of Two Brothers --

 

Studios: New Journey Pictures and Horizon Entertainment

Director: Scott Derrickson

Based OnFullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa

Genre: Fantasy/Action/Adventure

Release Date: July 12th, Y8 (IMAX)

Theater Count: 3,825

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for Violence, Disturbing Imagery/Themes, and Some Language

Runtime: 2 hrs 0 min

Production Budget: $115 Million

Original Score Composer: Hans Zimmer

 

Major Cast

Jaeden Martell as Edward Elric

JD McCrady as Alphonse Elric (voice-role)

(the armor is brought to life via motion capture done by a specialized motion capture actor)

Henry Golding as Col. Roy Mustang

Alicia Vikander as Lieutenant Riza Hawkeye

Maisie Williams as Rose

Jeremy Strong as Shou Tucker

Florence Pugh as Winry Rockbell

Kathy Bates as Pinako Rockbell

Andrew Garfield as Col. Maes Hughes

Dave Bautista as Major Alex Louis Armstrong

with Colin Firth as General Bradley

and Conleth Hill as Father Cornello

 

Original Song: "Together" by Shinedown (INSPIRATION)

 

Logline: Years after a failed human transmutation, two alchemist brothers join the military of their country Amestris to get closer to discovering how they can get their bodies back--meanwhile, the priest of one of Amestris's cities might not be who he says he is...

 

Plot Summary (15 Pages and 7,230 Words)

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1VbCQFZAGYz51W1gSTTVVHS83-fb3Y8lkarwz8IEVXME/edit

 

Special thanks to @Reddroast for collaborating, and to @cookie for his input regarding the initial version of the film.

Edited by SLAM!
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SLASH, SPLAT, BOOM!

 

Studio: Phoenix Fire Entertainment

Director: Sophia Takal

Writer: Sophia Takal

Producer: Sophia Takal, Pierce Varous

 

Release Date: August 30th

Genre: Slasher/Thriller/Satire

Rating: R, for gore and language

Format: 2D

Budget: $13 million

Theater Count: 2.897

Runtime: 1h33 (93 minutes)

 

Cast:

- Willa Fitzgerald as the white woman

- Kiana Ledé as Lillian Coates

- Matthew Lillard as the killer

 

Plot:

Spoiler

In a dark, damp room, a young woman (Willa Fitzgerald) wakes up and gets up, quickly panicking upon realizing that she's trapped in a scary location with no means to escape, other than a locked door. In the room there are also television screens, which turn on soon after. They reveal three other people of diverse ages, all trapped in the same kind of rooms as well. Shortly after, a voice of a man comes out of a speaker (Matthew Lillard). He welcomes them to Slash, Splat, Boom!, a secret maze that he created in the area of the city circus that they were visiting. All of these people have been selected to participate, as all of them attended the circus, and they were all captured at their homes. Their task is simple: not be the last person to reach the next room in the maze. When they reach a room, they will have to press a red button that indicates their presence. The person who does this last... dies. Game on.

 

The woman, terrified, slowly makes her way across the maze, encountering dangers like barbed wire walls and tight corridors with broken glass on the floor. Every once in a while she crosses paths with some of the other trapped people, but doesn't to them.

 

She reaches the room, and presses the button, which activates a red light. As she does, the three TV's turn on, and indicate that she was the first person to arrive at her room. Two others shortly do the same, leaving for last place an old man. The killer says in the speaker that the old man was the 'chosen' to die first... he should be happy, at least he'll suffer the least out of everyone else. Soon, into the room where the old man is at comes a masked man, holding a machete, a kitchen knife, a hunting knife and wearing a clawed glove. He's also wearing a recording camera on his belt. The old man screams in panic, and the man asks him to choose which he wants to be killed with. The old man doesn't answer, so the killer puts him down with all of the weapons, then decapitating him with the machete. After he sees the splat of the man's blood on the walls, he says "boom" loudly. The woman is seen looking horrified at this. The man then says that now that they survived the first killing, the other players can know why this is happening: he wants to punish people who go to circuses to enjoy the exploitation of men, women, children and animals alike by exploiting them like slaves to his bloodthirst. "Everyone outside will all see what you are seeing and fucking repent", he says. He then stops recording and tells the other players to move on towards the next room.

 

The woman continues making her way across the maze, and then encounters one of the other two remaining players. It's a young African American woman (Kiana Ledé), who questions her about what she knows about any of this, but she doesn't answer. The black woman presents herself as Lillian Coates, and says that this is all madness to her, that no one should kill anyone because they're angry at other people's decisions and that this man is a psychopath. Lillian then demands the woman to say something, but she remains silent, prompting Lillian to leave her be, saying she hopes this ends well. The woman continues to say nothing. and then goes on afterwards, going yet again through maze dangers to get to the room. She gets to the room and presses the red button, and finds out that Lillian is also a survivor, making her breathe of relief. The last person remaining is a middle aged man, who, upon the arrival of the killer, asks him to kill him with the machete. The killer says that he knows he's asking him to do that so that he dies instantly - "beggars are losers", and he starts stabbing the victim non-lethally in multiple parts of his body, until he eventually puts the machete through his heart. The women watch this in horror. Upon finishing his victim off, he once again says "boom", stops recording, and leaves.

 

The two women race towards the final room in the maze, encountering each other halfway through again. Lillian says that she wouldn't mind if the woman won, as she feels like she has a decent heart. The woman hugs her, unexpectedly, and then finally says something, for the first time in the movie: "Go." Lillian is befuddled, but the woman tells her that she should escape, for her purity as a person. Lillian thanks her profusely, and hopes that she survives too. The two hug again, and Lillian races away. We follow Lillian go through a bunch of maze dangers, and then reach the final room, touching the red button and indicating she arrived before the other woman. The woman jogs to her final room, and upon getting there, she's surprised that the killer is already waiting for her there, accusing her of not taking this seriously. Before the killer attacks, the woman asks him if he feels any remorse for attacking innocent people, and he doesn't respond - instead, he just chops her head off. Lillian screams in horror, while he triumphantly screams "boom!" one last time. He congratulates the sole survivor, Lillian Coates, and says that she can enjoy freedom all she wants. All she needs to do is blaze through the last few corridors and she's out of there.

 

Lillian does so, racing fast. However, when she reaches what appears like the exit, she realizes that all four maze corridors led directly to this room, and that between her and the exit door, which is locked, there is a cage... with a large python. The killer comes out, and admits that it was never in plans for her to actually leave the maze alive - he wouldn't want her to tell the cops about the location of the maze. She calls him a psychopath, but he says that he's just fighting for what's right. She tells him that neither her or anyone actually enjoys watching people or animals be manipulated and tortured like what perhaps happens in circuses, and calls him a terrorist, but he says that truth be told, he wasn't quite just doing it for the pets or the children or anyone else - he was doing it because he enjoyed it. He's a fan of horror movies and always wanted to try it. "It's my little... circus trick. Real headless helpers." She also calls him out for using an animal for whatever he wants to do and says he's a hypocrite, but he tells her to shut the fuck up and accept her destiny already. "In circuses, people make pets their puppets. Tonight, an animal is making a puppet out of you." He unleashes the python on Lillian, who tries to run, but finds no escape, and the python kills her. As the man watches Lillian die, he says to himself: "For once, the black guy was the last to die", and smiles deviously.

 

He then posts every video that he recorded in the maze, including every death, on the internet, and the videos quickly gain notorierity.

 

Edited by MCKillswitch123
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Funny Business

Director: Albert White

Studio: Masquerade Pictures (imprint of Fossil Record Studios)  

Genre: Animation/Live-Action Hybrid, Comedy

Release Date: Friday, February 16th, Y8

Theater Count: 2,545

MPAA Rating: R (sex, language) 

Runtime: 116 minutes

Production Budget: $30 million 

 

Principal Cast:

Rob Paulsen as Squash (voice)

Tress MacNeille as Stretch (voice)

Jim Cummings as Bad Bob (voice)

William Corman* as Norton J. Greenburg III

David Wesley* as The Toonbuster

Janet Lee Clark* as Princess Elizabeth (voice)

Kevin Conroy as The Leaping Locust (voice)

George Emerson* as Nezumi (voice)

 

Tagline: He's bad. . . and he's drawn that way. 

 

Plot Summary: 

Spoiler

 

The movie starts out with a classic Disney or Looney Tunes-style cartoon, starring two "ink-blot"-style characters named Squash and Stretch. At the cartoon's conclusion, an unseen voice from offscreen shouts "Cut!" The cartoon is revealed to be a "live-action" production, in a world where animated characters and live-action humans coexist, with Squash and Stretch being filmed on a stage by a live-action cameraman. The cameraman expresses disappointment in the take, and requests that Squash and Stretch do it over, only for Stretch to curse at him and flip him off. The cameraman then reaches into his pocket for his phone, and makes a call. 
 

Stretch is brought before the CEO of Animation Nation Studios, Norton J. Greenburg III, and questioned about his misbehavior. Stretch explains that he doesn't want to bring joy to the cartoon-loving children of the world, as he was created to do, and would rather be in, as he puts it, "a real fucking movie." This prompts Greenburg to tell Stretch the real reason for his existence. He holds up a vial of bubbling purple liquid, called Hilarium. Hilarium is the element that causes cartoon characters to come to life, and according to Greenburg it is generated by laughter. If Stretch were to quit performing in the comedy cartoons he's famous for, and start pursuing a career in drama, there wouldn't be enough Hilarium to go around. That night, at The Inkwell (a tavern for cartoon characters), Stretch drowns his woes and discusses his woes with Bad Bob. Bad Bob is the villain of Squash and Stretch's cartoons, but "offstage", he's a good friend to them. However, he is also very loyal to the studio, and doesn't understand why Stretch would want to leave. Despite Squash and Bad Bob's protests, Stretch leaves the next day. 

 

He arrives at a studio making an R-rated action movie called The Explodables 3: Balls of Steel. With his inherent ability as a cartoon character to recover instantly from injuries that would kill a flesh-and-blood human, he lands a role in it, and to his delight the audiences love him. One person who does not love him in the movie, is Greenberg. Angry that one of his biggest stars has run away, he hires a mercenary called the Toonbuster to track him down. Meanwhile, Squash also goes out looking for Stretch. Remembering what he said about wanting to be in a "real fucking movie", she heads to Animation Nation's feature film section, hoping that's where he is. She doesn't find him there, but she does find the main character in Animation Nation's newest animated film-- a fairy-tale princess named Elizabeth, who has her own issues with the company. Elizabeth is a lesbian, but in her movie she marries a prince. 
 

Once Squash tells Elizabeth what happened to Stretch, she sympathizes with him, but nevertheless agrees to help her track him down. Meanwhile, Stretch is enjoying the perks of life as a live-action movie star—money, women, drugs, and sex. He has no interest whatsoever in going back, not even when the ToonBuster bursts into his trailer one night and kidnaps him. Stretch demands to know why it’s so important that he be brought back to Animation Nation, and the ToonBuster explains that Greenberg lied about where Hilarium comes from. It isn’t generated by laughter, but by any form of enjoyment of cartoons. But since Animation Nation Studios built its reputation on comedy cartoons, they couldn’t have their cartoon actors realizing there was more to animation than just making people laugh. Stretch is then taken to a prison for “renegade cartoon characters” who, for one reason or another, have rebelled against their creators. There he meets The Leaping Locust (a Batman-esque superhero decided to quit in protest after his show was rebooted into a comedy) and Nezumi (a Pikachu-like anime character who ran away from his studio because he was tired of only saying his own name). After hearing their stories, Stretch tells his own, and they realize the common thread between them—people just don’t take cartoons seriously.
 

Squash and Elizabeth finally make it to the movie studio where Stretch worked, only to discover that he has been kidnapped. After talking to the other (live-action) actors, they deduce that the ToonBusters must have captured Stretch, and they follow him to the cartoon prison. There, Squash reunites with Stretch, and they lead the other renegade cartoon characters in a massive prison break, which culminates in them storming the headquarters of Animation Nation. Elizabeth uses her ability to “make cute woodland animals appear when she sings” to attack the guards; said animals become vicious and bloodthirsty. Greenberg is tied to a rocket which then explodes, Wile E. Coyote-style, but since he is a live-action human this kills him. Finally, Squash and Stretch reveal the truth about Hilarium. They declare that cartoon characters will no longer be oppressed, and that animation is as valid a medium as live-action.
 

As Stretch finishes his speech, an offscreen voice shouts “Cut!”, mirroring the beginning of the movie, and the whole story is revealed to be yet another movie Squash and Stretch are acting in.

 

 


 

*fictional 

Edited by El Squibbonator
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Everything I Never Told You

Studio: New Journey Pictures Classics

Director: Chloé Zhao

based on the novel by Celeste Ng

Genre: Drama

Release Date: June 7th, Y8

Theater Count: 2,153

MPAA Rating: Rated R for Language, Sexual Content, Brief Violence, and Intense Arguments

Budget: $25 Million

Runtime: 2 hr 17 min

Original Score Composers: Dustin O'Halloran and Volker Bertelmann

 

Major Cast

Michelle Williams as Marilyn Lee

Daniel Wu as James Lee

Ryan Potter as Nath Lee

Leah Lewis as Lydia Lee

Brooklyn Prince as Hannah Lee

Marcia Gay Harden as Doris Walker

Nichole Sakura as Louisa

Sean Bridgers as Officer Fiske

with Emily Mortimer as Janet Wolff

and Tye Sheridan as Jack Wolff

 

An interracial Ohioan family grapples with the death of their oldest daughter Lydia, as well as the fallout that follows her death. A challenging film that oscillates between its story’s timeline.

 

Player's Note: Please read the book. It's much more intricate and detailed than my film could hope to be. It's fantastic source material, and Celeste Ng, a relatively new author who's already becoming a household name in literary circles, really does deserve the world.

 

*Special thanks to @cookie for help with casting.*

 

Spoiler
Spoiler

1952. We begin with a sequence of first-person point of view shots, which stays until noted otherwise. Marilyn Walker sits at her classroom desk. staring down at a paper copy of the periodic table. Doris Walker (Marcia Gay Harden) stands at the chalkboard and greets the students of her home economics class. Marilyn puts her copy away and looks up—Doris is staring right at her, but glances away. Cut to shots of many home-ed classes going by as Marilyn leaves eggshells in the pancake mix, uses salt instead of sugar, leaves the hot iron on the board.

 

Cut to Marilyn having dinner with Doris, who is her mother. Doris sternly looks at Marilyn and warns her that if she continues her shenanigans, then she will have to fail her. Doris takes dishes to the sink as Marilyn watches from the table. Fade to black.

 

 

 

Cut to Marilyn staring at her mailbox. She lingers, and then opens it. She reaches in and grabs a letter. It’s from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. She tears open the letter and examines it. Cut to her running inside. She tells Doris she got in. Doris hugs her, grabs her face, and says she’s proud of her. “You’ll meet a lot of wonderful men at Harvard.”

 

Cut to Marilyn looking around at the Harvard campus. Cut to a first-person point-of-view shot in which Marilyn slides her college course schedule to her advisor. He reads it. “Introductory Physics?” he asks. She tells him she wants to be a doctor. “Not a nurse?” he asks. Then the advisor remarks about her good high school grades and recommends she take chemistry.

 

Cut to chemistry classes. The men in the class keep trying to help her with the tools. Cut to her in her dorm, pouring herself into her studies. Cut back and forth between the act of studying and her imagination of being a doctor, using a stethoscope, performing CPR, saving lives, etc.

 

Cut to her junior year. She walks into the lecture hall for her new course, “The Cowboy in American Culture” and is surprised to learn that an Asian-ethnic man named James Lee (Daniel Wu) is teaching it. As the lecture proceeds, she watches as students file out of the lecture hall by the denizens, even while James is still teaching. But not Marilyn—she stays. She even talks to James afterwards, and he asks if she’s a history major. “Physics,” she replies.

 

Cut to Marilyn drinking from a coffee cup and setting it down, looking at James who’s sitting at the café with her. “At first, I studied Paleontology,” he says. “I wanted to find fossils.” Marilyn’s response: “that is a different kind of history.” He chuckles.

 

Cut to them in James’s office. “That was the first time I’ve ever kissed a woman,” he says.

 

Cut to James POV, where Marilyn Lee (Michelle Williams) stares back at him. “That was the first time I’ve ever kissed a man,” she replies.

 

Cut back in time to James as a young boy walking into a classroom. He takes the test, answers the questions speedily, and hands it to the astonished teacher, who says he’ll have the results next week. Cut to him in his father’s truck as they pull up to the boarding school James just got into. His father—thick Chinese accent—tells him to set a good example as its first oriental student. Cut to students and professors of that institution giving him mean or confused looks. Cut to him, when he’s older, flipping through American culture books with a flashlight at night, and also watching westerns in theaters.

 

Cut to him writing on the chalkboard in his lecture hall when Marilyn walks up and introduces herself. Cut to her moving into his apartment. Cut to Marilyn cooking for him, explaining that her mother was a home-ed teacher. Cut to the dining table, where James explains to Marilyn that both of his parents have died.

 

Cut to James applying to be officially taken on as a part of Harvard’s History faculty (he’d just been running trial courses before). Cut to a higher-level professor telling him they decided to take on someone. Cut to James sitting at his desk, tapping his pencil repeatedly. His door opens. He stands—Marilyn blushes and holds her stomach, which has enlarged. Cut to Marilyn’s POV—she looks down at her stomach and feels it. There’s no mistaking it—she’s pregnant.

 

Cut to Marilyn packing away her school books (with some hesitation). The life of the mother has taken precedence over the life of the doctor. Cut to Marilyn in a phone booth; she calls Doris—“his name is James Lee.” Cut to Marilyn clapping when James graduates with his PhD. Cut to Marilyn standing next to James and waiting for Doris at the train station. Doris walks to Marilyn and smiles—but her smile fades. She looks back and forth at Marilyn and James. Flabbergasted.

 

Cut to Marilyn and Doris having dessert alone.

 

Doris: You’re sure he doesn’t just want a green card?

Marilyn: …He’s from California.

 

Cut to Marilyn walking toward a courthouse on the day of the wedding. Cut to everyone getting ready, then Doris tugging Marilyn away—“let’s touch up your lipstick.”  Cut to Doris leaning in and applying makeup in the bathroom—“it’s not right, Marilyn. You’ll change your mind. You’ll regret it.” Cut to James running up to Marilyn after she bursts out of the bathroom and into the hallway, and he asks what’s the matter. “My mother thinks I should marry someone more like me.” Jump cut to James staring down, then looking at her, then clasping her hand.

 

Cut to Marilyn walking down the aisle as James waits for her. Cut to her standing in front of the crowd—she stares at Doris, who glares at her. She turns to James, who gazes longingly. Cut to James’s POV; we see that Marilyn’s somewhat apprehensive and anxious—even still, she smiles.

 

Fade to black.

 

EVERYTHING I NEVER TOLD YOU

 

(The first-person POV sequence ends there. Flashbacks from this point on will be italicized.)

 

1977. Cut to a house in a suburban neighborhood in Ohio. It’s 2:00 in the morning. Cut to a fifth-grade girl, Hannah Lee (Brooklyn Prince), who’s in her bed having one of those nights where she sleeps but never actually “falls asleep.” A faint sound of the front door opening is heard. She peels apart the window blinds and peeks out. She sees a figure similar to her older sister Lydia Lee (Leah Lewis)—the figure walks down the driveway, down the sidewalk, and out of view.

 

Cut to Marilyn waking up. James has long since gone to work. She gets up and prepares breakfast for her three kids—Hannah, Lydia, and Nath Lee (Ryan Potter). Only when Hannah and Nath are sitting and eating their cereal does Marilyn realize Lydia isn’t in her seat at the table, her unfinished physics homework placed where her cereal should be.

 

Marilyn goes upstairs and looks in Lydia’s room. The bed’s made. The room’s neat. No Lydia.

 

Marilyn walks down and goes outside. Nath tells Hannah she heard Lydia’s radio at 11:30 PM. Marilyn walks back in and says he car’s still in the driveway. Marilyn tells Nath to take Hannah to school, as they’ve both missed the bus.

 

Cut to Marilyn sitting alone in the kitchen. She taps her toe. She’s anxious.

 

Marilyn cooks in the kitchen when a one-year-old Lydia waddles in. These are Lydia’s first steps. Marilyn embraces Lydia and celebrates.

 

Cut back to Marilyn sitting. She sips a cup of tea.

 

Cut to Marilyn twisting a telephone’s rotary dial. The high school’s secretary picks up. Marilyn asks the secretary if Lydia is in physics class. The secretary leaves to check. Marilyn waits. The secretary comes back and tells her Lydia isn’t there. Marilyn hangs up.

 

Cut to Marilyn in a frenzy, checking rooms, closets, the garage. No Lydia. She pulls back shower curtains, kitchen cabinets, pantries, even the oven. She even looks in the refrigerator. No Lydia.

 

Sunlight beams through the windows. Marylin looks at her hands. She storms back to the phone.

 

Cut to James in an office at the small-town university where he works. He grades papers. Someone knocks on the door. It’s Louisa (Nichole Sakura), his assistant. She walks in with more graded papers. They talk for a bit. Louisa sees James’s pictures and is surprised that his wife isn’t Chinese. James notices that something’s in her hair. Louisa allows him to sift through it. He picks it out. It’s a ladybug.

 

“Those things are everywhere during Summer,” says an unimportant character named Stanley, who’s leaning in the doorway. James asks him what he wants. He wants to ask a business question. Louisa says she has to get going and leaves. James crushes the ladybug between his fingers. The phone rings. James picks it up. It’s Marilyn, who asks him to come home. James and Stanley exchange a look.

 

Officer Fiske (Sean Bridgers) and other police officers investigate Lydia’s room. Fiske reassures the Lees, saying most missing girl cases resolve themselves when the girl comes home within 24 hours. Nath asks for a percentage. James tells Nath not to interrupt Fiske. An officer takes notes about the room. Fiske asks James, “didn’t your wife go missing once?” James tells him that was a misunderstanding and a personal family matter.

 

In the kitchen, police flip through family albums for a headshot of Lydia. Hannah chooses one where she isn’t smiling. James says no and flips through the album and finds one from Lydia’s sixteenth birthday, which had just been a week before. She’s smiling in it.

 

The police leave. Marilyn and James make a list of classmates who they think might be friends of Lydia’s. They call them one by one. None of them know where Lydia is. Marilyn turns to Nath and asks him if there’s anyone else Lydia might know.

 

Lydia enjoys an afternoon drive with Jack Wolff (Tye Sheridan) on a sunny day.

 

Marilyn does some gardening in the front yard; Nath walks from the mailbox to the house, and Marilyn perks up and asks him where Lydia is. He lies and says she’s studying with a friend. Marilyn goes back to gardening, and Nath swallows his lie…

 

Nath contemplates, turns to Marilyn, and shakes his head. The parents stare down in horror as all the names on their list are crossed out.

 

Cut to James calling Officer Fiske. “Lydia’s friends” don’t know anything, James tells him. James talks with him and hangs up, telling the others they’re sending an officer to look for her.

 

No one eats dinner. They wait for Lydia. She never comes. James sends Nath and Hannah upstairs at midnight. Nath shuts his door and looks out his window. We know from the flashback what Jack’s car looks like, but it’s not in the driveway across the street. “Where are you, Jack?” he mutters. Hannah silently reads in her room.

 

The next day comes. Nath and Hannah stay home from school. James calls Officer Fiske again. Marilyn frets. Cut to them sitting together at the dining table. They’re afraid to look at each other. Marilyn looks to where Lydia should be sitting. The chair’s emptiness looms over them.

 

That afternoon, a neighbor near the large neighborhood lake, a popular location for swimmers in the Summer, notices a rowboat adrift in the middle.

 

That night, the family huddles together as James answers Officer Fiske’s question. “No, sir. She doesn’t know how to swim.” Then it dawns on him.

 

At a YMCA, James wades in the shallow water and motions for five-year-old Lydia to come to him. Lydia is a crying mess and refuses to come near the water. She lays down by the side of the pool and cries.

 

James hangs up. The entire family freezes. They exchange sullen looks.

 

A boat travels across the lake. Lydia’s body is found pretty quickly.

 

Cut to a garden cemetery. It’s a closed-casket funeral, to Marilyn’s chagrin. James peers behind his family—high schoolers (read: crossed-off names) are there. He finds himself staring and looks away. Hannah notices the photojournalists taking pictures for newspaper headlines. Nath glares at Jack, who sits at the edge of the crowd.

 

They lower the coffin. Nath cries silently. He sees Jack, who now stares at him. He looks away.

 

Cut to people leaving. Some decide not to talk to the Lees, and some surround them, sharing condolences, patting Hannah’s head. Marilyn shakes the hand of Janet Wolff (Emily Mortimer)—Jack’s mother—who’s a doctor at the hospital and has known Marilyn for a while.

 

Jack stands away on the other side of the grave and waits. Nath storms to him and demands to know why he’s there. Jack attempts to say sorry for the loss, but Nath says he knows Lydia was with him the day before her disappearance. Their families come within earshot. Janet asks Jack if everything’s all right, and Jack leaves with Janet.

 

James chastises Nath for picking a fight at the funeral. Nath attempts to explain that he thinks Jack knows something about Lydia, and James tells Nath to let the police do the work. Marilyn tells them to stop—a mascara-stained tear falls down her face. James tells Nath that he’s taking the others home and that he can walk home. They leave Nath standing there.

 

In school, in the hallways, Nath overhears girls whispering about their experience of having sex with Jack. He grimaces. Cut to him in the cafeteria. He sees Jack leaning against the school’s back patio. On the back patio, Jack bites into an apple, the cafeteria and all the hubbub of its occupants placed behind him as if he’s above it all.

 

Nath watches the cemetery workers take the chairs from the cemetery. He decides to walk back to his house—it’s not that far away—and sees a police car in Jack’s driveway. He sneaks and leans his ear against the screen door. Officer Fiske asks Jack questions. Jack answers. “She had skipped ahead into physics.” “We were just friends.” “I was just teaching her how to drive.” “I saw her the Monday before.” “We were smoking in my car. “Lydia was upset.” “Upset about everything, officer—grades, parents, Nath leaving for Harvard. Everything.”

 

Nath leaves. He goes back to his house—but everyone has dispersed.

 

Cut to James at his university desk studying Lydia’s autopsy. The images are grisly. He frowns. Louisa walks in—she was at the funeral, too, judging by her black dress. Louisa grabs the autopsy papers from James and ends up reading it herself. Louisa says he shouldn’t be in the office and invites him to her apartment. Cut to James and Louisa entering the apartment and walking straight to the bedroom; they start kissing, and James shuts the door.

 

Marilyn tosses and turns in bed, trying to sleep and failing. She decides to go upstairs to Lydia’s bedroom. Hannah hears Marilyn enter Lydia’s room (Hannah’s room is in the attic above Lydia’s room); Hannah presses her ear against the floor. Marilyn peruses the blue ribbons and the bookshelf with academic books. She stoops to the bottom shelf and pulls out Lydia’s yearly diaries. She rummages through the diaries looking for answers. All of the notebooks are blank.

 

James puts on his jacket and says good night to Louisa as he walks out of her apartment. Nath stares at Jack’s house from his room. Marilyn sits in Lydia’s room and thinks hard, trying to discover who might be responsible for Lydia’s demise, or what went wrong…

 

****

 

1965. At a Christmas party at the university where James works, Marilyn meets Tom Lawson, a chemistry professor, and asks him if he needs academic work. Lawson says he’ll consider it. They exchange numbers, and she waits for a call but never receives it. That Spring, the phone rings, but it’s someone telling her that Doris has passed away due to a stroke. Marilyn drives back home to Virginia to help the workers move Doris’s things out of her house. She’s getting rid of everything in there because she doesn’t really need her mom’s belongings. But there’s one thing she finds that she might want to keep—Doris’s Betty Crocker cookbook. Marilyn examines the cookbook and flips through its chapters.

 

Cut to first-person POV shots of Marilyn as a young girl following Doris around the kitchen. Doris gives her tips revolving around how knowing about cooking would equate to being a good housewife, caring for the husband and children, etc.

 

Cut back to Marilyn staring at the book. The mementos of Doris’s life are being packed away. There won’t be too much evidence of Doris’s existence much longer. Marilyn looks down at the Betty Crocker cookbook with a look that says, “that’s not the life I want.”

 

She drives on the highway back to her spouse and kids in Ohio. But there’s heavy rainfall, and she pulls to the side of the road. She ponders for a moment. She steps outside of the car, looks up at the sky, and allows determination to envelop her.

 

James takes six-year-old Nath to the YMCA. He tells Nath to play Marco Polo with the other kids, so Nath does so for a while, but there’s a moment where Nath is it, but as he shouts Marco, the other kids, all Caucasian, pull themselves out of the pool, laughing at Nath as he swims around with his eyes shut. A fifth-grade girl makes a comment teasing Nath’s ethnicity. James watches in sadness—then one boy around Nath’s age swims toward him, shouting ‘polo’ repeatedly. It’s a six-year-old Jack. Nath taps Jack, but realizing the others were gone, swims away and marches to the locker room. Cut to Nath drying off in the locker room as Jack peeks at him behind the door. James sees Jack peeking, but Nath doesn’t, and he and James walk out.

 

At home, Nath storms upstairs. Marilyn sees this from the kitchen. She makes dinner. Nath refuses to eat it. After dinner, Marilyn calls Lawson, but Lawson’s already found another assistant. She hangs up. The next day, while everyone else is gone, she drives to the hospital on a hunch and sits in the waiting room, staring at the doctors who pass by. When Dr. Janet Wolff passes by, she’s flabbergasted. She ponders; suddenly, Janet is standing in front of her, and she asks “can I help you,” and Marilyn says everything is fine.

 

In her house during dinner, she steps away and gets things such as a roadmap situated. After a brief scene where she hugs Nath and Lydia goodbye as they’re getting on the bus—they don’t know she’s about to leave—Marilyn drives to a community college in Toledo, marches to the work-desk in her apartment, and writes a letter to James explaining her absence. James reads the letter at the house and is saddened by its contents.

 

****

 

Cut to the house at night. Hannah sneaks out through the front door She mimics what she saw Lydia do—walk down the driveway, walk down the sidewalk. She reaches the lake. The boat’s no longer there.

 

The next morning, Nath walks downstairs for breakfast. James and Marilyn have an argument—someone left the door unlocked. Hannah is frozen—knowing it’s her fault but too afraid to admit it. The doorbell rings. It’s Officer Fiske, who confirms that the “friends” they spoke to didn’t really know Lydia. They ask if Lydia was lonely or if she showed any signs of wanting to hurt herself. They reveal there’s no evidence of anyone going into the boat with her. Marilyn detests that claim, believing that Lydia’s death was by a psycho’s hands rather than Lydia’s own. “Marilyn,” James projects. The officers say they want to ask Nath some questions.

 

On the front porch, they ask “Nathan” if Lydia had ever snuck out at night before—“no, never”—and if she got along with her parents—“sure she did”—and if they ever hit her—“they loved her.” They ask if she ever wanted to her herself. Nath stares down.

 

Flurry of first-person POV shots of Harvard’s bustling campus. Red bricks, green grass.

 

Nath cries. The officers give him a handkerchief and walk away.

 

Inside, Marilyn and James continue arguing. Hannah slips under the kitchen table and curls into a ball. Marilyn monologues about how she’ll be damned if she doesn’t find out what happened to Lydia, and about how James is wrong for thinking she’s just a hysterical housewife, that she shouldn’t think for herself, and that she should be all “thank you officer, yes sir officer”. Then she says, “I don’t kowtow to the police like you do.”

 

Stunned silence. James says he has class soon and storms out. Marilyn throws a tea cup on the ground; it shatters. Hannah stifles a gasp. Marilyn storms upstairs.

 

Hannah goes to Nath’s room and tells him the parents had a fight. Nath suggests they walk to the lake. James goes to Louisa’s apartment with the intention of calling off the affair, but at her doorstep, he decides not to call it off, and Louisa invites him back inside. Marilyn paces around in Lydia’s room, investigates an unsearched part of Lydia’s backpack, finds cigarettes and condoms, and backs away as if she’d found spiders. Near the lake, Nath rants about wanting to find Jack, but Hannah calms him down, and they have a bonding moment. Marilyn storms outside of the house and throws the cigarettes and condoms in the garbage bin and steps back, trying to compose herself—but the disgusted grimace persists.

 

****

 

James takes a microwavable dinner out of the microwave. He sits with Nath (7) and Lydia (6), who already have their dinners. Lydia’s a broken record at this point, but she asks when Marilyn’s coming home. James sighs. Cut to the next morning; Nath and Lydia watch cartoons while James calls the police for the nth time, asking them questions about where Lydia is. Days go by; James reads books, and the kids keep waking up and hoping Marilyn comes home, but it doesn’t happen. One day, they go for a drive, and Nath wants to go swimming, but James says they can’t because Lydia can’t swim, and Nath says it’s all Lydia’s fault. Lydia slumps.

 

Nath and Lydia keep a tally of the amount of days Marilyn is gone. Nath walks outside and walks to the steps of Jack’s house. Jack is eating Swedish Fish, a type of gummy candy, and he offers some to Nath. Nath puts one in his mouth. Jack tells Nath he’ll be okay because “kids only need one parent.” Nath goes stiff, spits the candy out of his mouth, tells Jack to shut up, and walks off.

 

There’s a sequence where Nath becomes obsessed with astronauts and the space craze. He watches the news reports and absorbs magazines about it. Nath rushes to James to talk about his astronaut passion, but the frustration regarding Marilyn’s disappearance swells inside of James, and he smacks Nath and chastises him. Nath runs off, and Lydia follows. James kicks the television to the floor. James stumbles and catches his breath. Cut to James buying a new television at the store.

 

On another day, while Nath goes back to reading about rocket launches and James locks himself in his study, Lydia wanders into the kitchen and finds the Betty Crocker cookbook. Lydia knows it’s her mother’s favorite book. She reads the book every day—on the school bus, on the couch while Nath watches tv, and even before she goes to sleep. And on that bed, she closes the book—she misses her mother—and turns out the light.

 

Nine weeks after she left, in her apartment, Marilyn studies so hard she faints. She decides to rest. She gets groceries and walks out of the store, but drops one of the bags. The glass of a Coca-Cola bottle cuts her hand, and she has to go to the hospital to get stitches. She’s treated by a female doctor, who has a hunch and wants to run another test before she leaves. At the Lee house, James answers the phone and learns that his wife is in the hospital. James leaves the kids with a neighbor and drives off. Cut to him running into the hospital and asking where his wife is. Cut to the hospital room, where a doctor tells Marilyn that she’s pregnant with another child and that the child is due in January. The doctor walks out, and Marilyn has a surprised look on her face. She fidgets as she turns her gaze to James, who’s in the room now. He kneels to her and asks her where she’s been. In a daze, she asks him to forgive her. He leads her out of the hospital to his car. They drive on the highway—James asks if she’s cold or if she needs water. Cut to Marilyn under a blanket, lying on the couch in the house. James shouts that mom’s home. Lydia watches Nath rush downstairs, but she walks to her room, takes the cookbook off her bed, and stuffs it behind books on her bookshelf. Nath and Lydia embrace their mother.

 

Marilyn cooks with one hand and holds her belly with the other. Lydia walks in and tells her that she lost the cookbook. Marilyn has a realization. We see a moment of Marilyn sitting with Lydia and guiding her through math problems.

 

The family gets to eat better food than microwave dinners. Marilyn and James start paying more attention to Lydia, which makes Nath jealous. One day, they’re on the dock of the lake, and Lydia dangles her feet in the water while Nath picks apart a barbie doll and throws the pieces in the river. Lydia wants to leave, but Nath pushes her into the lake without really meaning to. His face goes white, and he dives in and saves her, bringing her back to shore. They catch their breath, and the way the camera frames it, you can tell they’ve gotten closer. Cut to black.

 

1976. Marilyn drives high-school-age Lydia to the community college. She’s about to take test for the college-level biology course Marilyn coerced her to take. Marilyn kisses her on the forehead and tells her she’ll do great. In the test room, she stares at her test, then at the clock, then at the teacher’s desk, whose occupant’s reading a newspaper. She peers at the student beside her, looks at his test, and copies his answers.

 

Cut to Lydia in her room when Marilyn gives her a framed grade report—on the report is the ‘A’ Lydia didn’t truly earn. She uneasily hangs the report on the wall, close to the blue ribbons, and Marilyn congratulates her.

 

Lydia’s in the car, and Marilyn tells her they want her to move ahead to high school physics. James agrees with Marilyn because this way, Lydia can makes friends and study with older students. Lydia nods along, but gulps…

 

The classmates don’t really talk to Lydia. They talk about assignments from other classes, hangouts with people who are juniors and seniors. So Lydia’s alone. There’s also shots of Lydia eating alone in the cafeteria; she watches the white girls in her grade congregate together as they gawk and gossip about menial/petty things. Nath and Lydia both come home, and the parents give Lydia attention, but Nath jots to his room, picking from one of the magazines stashed under his bed. While they’re having breakfast, Marilyn shows Lydia the homework problems she got wrong. Lydia glances to Nath, who gives her a look of solace. Months go by, and Lydia’s test scores in psychics drop from the 90s, to the 70s, to the 60s, and finally to a big red 55—which is accompanied by a message telling her to get her parents to sign it. She sets textbooks on the test in her locker and closes it. She walks away, but her conscience ways down on her. She storms back to the locker.

 

Match cut from Lydia opening her locker to Jack opening his mailbox. He takes out an envelope and examines it. It’s a letter from Harvard—but it’s not for him. Nath’s reading in his room when the doorbell rings, and James calls to Nath saying someone’s there to see him. Nath comes down, and Jack hands Nath the letter—it must’ve been mailed to him by mistake. Jack walks off. Nath opens it as Marilyn, James, and Hannah surround him. It’s an acceptance letter. They celebrate together. “Lydia!” Nath shouts. But Lydia stands at the top of the staircase, and tells Marilyn that she’s failing physics. It sours the moment, and everyone goes silent.

 

During dinner, Hannah picks at her food. She looks around. Marilyn scolds Lydia for failing. James tells her to stop, but Marilyn glares at him—glares at him. James backs off, and Marilyn continues. Hannah peers at Nath, who hangs his head down—he’s been forgotten.

 

Nath brushes his teeth. The bathroom door’s slightly open. Lydia steps out of her room and attempts to speak to him, her voice coarse with sadness, trying to congratulate him and tell him she’s sorry. She can barely get any words out and Nath exits the bathroom, says good night, and shuts his bedroom door, leaving Lydia alone.

 

The next morning, Marilyn thumbtacks the failed test on the wall and plops heavy physics textbooks on the table. She sits with Lydia and reads questions from the homework aloud, even though it’s Christmas break. Lydia watches James in the kitchen, but James ignores them. Hannah listens to Lydia’s pencil under the table in the foyer. Lydia looks around as if she’s looking for Hannah, but gives up and resigns herself to the work…

 

School starts again, and Lydia gives the signed test back to the teacher and sits down. During the lesson, a “Psst!” distracts her. She looks to her left. It’s Jack, who’s sitting next to her. Jack explains that he’s in there as a senior because he failed the class last time he took it. Lydia reveals that she’s failing too. Jack draws a zero on the knee of her jeans. “Welcome to the club.”

 

At dinner, Marilyn asks Lydia how she’s doing in physics, and Lydia half-lies about it. Nath asks the parents to sign forms for Harvard, including a campus visit near the end of the semester, and they say yes. Lydia tells them that Jack is in her class. The parents don’t pay much attention, but Nath jerks up—astonished. Lydia smiles.

 

One day, Lydia’s walking in the school parking lot and catches Jack before he leaves. Lydia asks for a ride. Jack’s like, “shouldn’t you be taking the bus,” “I’m not headed straight home,” “you sure your brother wants you hanging out with me”—but she eventually convinces him to give her a ride. He drives off, and we see high school girls watch them leave and come to conclusions. During the drive, she asks Jack for a cigarette; Jack remarks that he’s surprised she wants one. She opens the glovebox and sees the condoms, and gets a little spooked but brushes it off. She says doesn’t care about physics. Jack calls bullshit on that.

 

Jack: Won’t Nath be upset when he knows you’re smoking?

Lydia: Not as upset to find out I was in your car.

Jack: Oh. Hates me that much, huh?

Lydia: Come on. Everybody knows what happens in this car.

 

Jack pulls over next to the lake and invites Lydia to get out because she doesn’t want him corrupting her chances to get into a good college. Lydia says she isn’t like Nath. A moment’s silence. Jack makes a casual guess that Lydia and her family are probably the only Chinese people in the whole town, and asks her what that’s like. Lydia thinks for a moment and then laments the fact that people decide what you’re like before they get to know you. Jack contemplates that idea for a while. Then he finally hands Lydia that cigarette she wanted. Lydia puts a cigarette in her mouth, and he lights it.

 

****

 

James gets a sequence, starting with the dean of James’s college telling him his Summer class is canceled—telling him to take some time to himself. He tosses and turns in bed, having bad dreams. In the morning, while Marilyn sits alone on the couch, James tells her he’s off to his lecture. Of course, we cut to shots of James spending time with Louisa. One day, James is driving home and sees balloons perched near the lake—people getting ready to celebrate the 4th of July. He gets out of the car and pops the balloons and throws the setup in the lake.

 

Nath opens the refrigerator for a midnight snack. He zones out. He grabs an egg. He zones out again. James walks in and tells him he’s wasting energy. He closes the fridge, apologizing, saying he didn’t expect him. James responds angrily to that comment. Nath sniffs the air and asks James if the perfume smell is from his “meetings”—Nath’s onto the truth.

 

James: Don’t question me. You have no right to question me. You know nothing of my life. Just like you knew nothing of your sister’s.

 

Nath stiffens. James has a look of regret—he knows he shouldn’t have said that. Nath punches the counter and runs upstairs.

 

The next morning, James picks up the newspaper off the porch. It’s another headline about Lydia. James walks in with the newspaper just as the phone rings. He throws the paper on the counter and answers the phone. It’s Officer Fiske, who tells him that the police/investigators have ruled Lydia’s case to be a suicide due to the circumstances surrounding her disappearance—no evidence of foul play. Lydia’s loneliness. Her grades in school. Of course, Marilyn appears in the hall, and she’s heard everything Fiske said. James thanks them and hangs up. Marilyn asks him who it was and argues that they can’t close the case because the Lydia she knew would never have committed suicide. Something shifts inside of James.

 

James: If she were a white girl, this wouldn’t have happened.

Marilyn: What?

James: If she were white… She would have fit in…

He thinks for a moment and decides to say it

James: Your mother was right. You should have married someone more like you.

 

They stare at each other. The camera follows James as he leaves the house. We get a shot of Marilyn standing frozen, processing what James just said to her.

 

In the apartment, Louisa smiles at James and offers him homemade pork buns. They remind him of his childhood. Cut to them having sex. After they finish, James tells her she’s the kind of girl he should have married in the first place.

 

Hannah peeks around a corner as Nath calls Officer Fiske, telling the investigators to reexamine Jack’s connection to the case. He slams the phone down and storms to his room. Hannah stands alone.

 

Lydia and Hannah lie on towels near the lake. A shirtless, sunglasses-wearing Jack strolls by and says charismatic statements, and asks where Nath is. Nath emerges from his swim and asks Jack what he’s doing there. Nath then advises Lydia to put on a shirt to avoid sunburns. Jack looks at Nath, then at Lydia, and then ruffles Hannah’s hair with his hand. Nath gathers Lydia and Hannah, and tells Jack to stay away from his sister; they leave Jack standing there.

 

Marilyn waits all night for James to come home, but he doesn’t. Cut to Marilyn, Nath, and Hannah congregating in the kitchen for breakfast. Hannah asks where “daddy” is. Marilyn says she doesn’t know. Then she has a thought. She looks at the calendar. She says aloud that it’s the 4th of July and that his Summer class should have the day off. “Mom,” Nath says. Marilyn looks at him. Nath hesitates and ultimately decides to say that he has an idea of where James might be.

 

Marilyn plops down a phone book and flips the pages. She finds Louisa Chen. The apartment’s address is in the book. She grabs the keys, says she’ll be back in an hour. Cut to her driving into the apartment complex’s parking lot. We get one uncut shot of Marilyn walking through the parking lot and walking up staircases—a quiet rage smoldering inside of her.

 

Mariyln knocks on Louisa's front door. Louisa opens it. Marilyn tells her that she’s looking for her husband. They briefly talk, but it’s clear Marilyn knows, and it’s clear Louisa’s trying to hide the fact that James is inside. Marilyn thanks her and walks off. We get a shot of Marilyn walking to her car. Louisa walks into her bedroom, but James has finished getting dressed; he tells her he has to go at some point and deal with the fallout. Louisa watches him leave.

 

****

 

A car drives down the road—but it’s Jack’s car, and Lydia’s inside. Jack is teaching Lydia how to drive a stick-shift car. Lydia initially has trouble with it, and Officer Fiske sees them while driving in the other lane but doesn’t pay much mind. They stop a block behind her house, and Jack asks if she’s gonna tell Nath he’s not such a bad guy, and Lydia says he wouldn’t believe her. Lydia walks off as Jack grins and drives to his house.

 

In her room, Lydia listens to her record player, and Marilyn walks in and lifts the needle and asks her if she’s finished her homework. Lydia wants to do it after dinner. Marilyn goes into another lecture about how she needs to get good grades in high school and how she has her whole life ahead of her—when she’s dead, that’s the one thing she wants her to remember. Then Lydia reminds her that she’s about to get her learner’s permit and that she’ll be allowed to drive places if she keeps her grades up. Lydia nods along.

 

Brief sequence of Lydia going to class, eating alone, getting more bad grades—not just in physics, but in other classes, too. She watches as Nath shows the parents a letter about his upcoming visit to Harvard. And she also learns more about driving with Jack.

 

One night, Lydia’s in the living room, and James walks in; it’s the night before Lydia’s birthday, and James noticed Lydia seemed down, so he gives her a silver necklace, and as he puts it on her neck, he tells her to remember what really matters—friendship, love, etc. James asks her to promise him she’ll get along with everyone. Lydia nods.

 

The next day after school, James picks her up and is ready to take her to get her learner’s permit. But Louisa’s in the front seat. Louisa is happy to meet Lydia. James drives away; Lydia looks out as white students pull their eyes into squints to make fun of them. Lydia looks back at James and Louisa and knows something is brewing between them. James drops Louisa off at the dentist, and Louisa says “see you tomorrow”—the way she says it quietly enrages Lydia.

 

Cut to Lydia taking her test for a learner’s permit. She’s staring into space, thinking hard about yesterday night and today. Then she looks out at the amount of other test-takers turning in their papers. She whips her head to the clock. The clock startles her. She looks down at her paper. She hasn’t answered a single question. She frantically attempts to take her test, but the exam supervisor apologizes to her and says her time is up. The test-taking students turn their papers in one by one, and the white kids in line happily celebrate and take their ID photos. Lydia sees this.

 

In the house, Marilyn applies the last touches of frosting on a cake she baked herself. Marilyn tells Hannah they’re planning a surprise party. Hannah reaches for the cake and dabs the frosting. “Hannah,” Marilyn says as she swats her hand away. Hannah licks the frosting off her finger. Then the garage door starts to open. Marilyn’s surprised that James and Lydia have arrived this early. Hannah rushes upstairs to get Nath. But James and Lydia enter while they’re still upstairs. Marilyn says happy birthday and is excited to see Lydia’s ID. Lydia says she failed. Marilyn is honestly surprised—“what do you mean?” Lydia repeats—“I failed.” Marilyn reassures her and tells her she can try again next weekend.

 

Hannah heard this from the stairwell. In her room in the attic, Hannah looks under her bed and grabs the driver’s pamphlet Lydia would have needed to study. We get a brief flashback sequence of Hannah searching through Lydia’s room, curious to find treasures. We cut back to Hannah looking at a small stash of Lydia’s things underneath the bed, which includes a few books that Lydia needs for school as well as the driver’s pamphlet. Hannah looks guilty, but we know she won’t say anything.

 

Lydia storms to her room, takes off her necklace, and stores it inside of a box. She sits in her room and cries for a bit. She comes back downstairs for dinner, but there’s a dark smile across her face. After dinner, Marilyn brings the cake to the table and lights the candles. Hannah notices Lydia’s dark smile, but she’s the only one who notices it. The family sings happy birthday. Lydia stares down at the cake, and a single tear streams down her face.

 

James makes it home around noon. He walks in. Nath and Hannah sit on the living room couch. They know. James goes upstairs, and Marilyn’s sitting in Lydia’s room. Marilyn asks how long it’s been happening, and James admits that it’s been happening since the funeral. Marilyn antagonizes him about how young she is, how she must want to marry him. They argue about their marriage, and James has a monologue about how Marilyn doesn’t know what it’s like to be different. Marilyn rebuts that with anecdotes of chemistry class, where men tried to lift up her skirt during lab experiments. Then she talks about how she gave up on her dream of being a doctor for the family, and she relates that to James’s wanting for Lydia to fit in, while she wanted Lydia to be exceptional.

 

Marilyn: But hopefully this woman works out for you better. She wants what you want. White picket fence. Two-point-three kids. She’ll be happy to throw away her student life for that. I just hope she doesn’t regret it.

 

Something flares inside of James, and he responds, saying, “Like you do?

 

This ticks Marilyn off, and she tells him to get out of the house. James tells her they should pretend they never met each other and that Lydia was never born. He walks to the stairs, but sees that Nath and Hannah were hearing everything in the stairwell. He storms past them out of the house. Nath and Hannah watch as James’s car backs out of the driveway and drives off. Nath decides to leave, too—Hannah tries to stop him but to no avail.

 

In Lydia’s room, Marilyn thinks long and hard about everything. She then pours her anger out onto the room, tearing down the periodic table, throwing the blue ribbons and framed grade report on the floor, pushing the books off of the bookshelf. She gets to the bottom shelf and notices the Betty Crocker cookbook—it is now revealed that Lydia hadn’t lost it, but simply kept it hidden. Marilyn pulls the cookbook out, sits, and flips through it. She comes to a realization.

 

Marilyn’s first-person POV: she interacts with five-year-old Lydia as Lydia watches mom’s baking soda experiments in awe. Lydia lugs books toward her—"show me more, Mommy!”. Lydia presses the stethoscope to Marilyn’s heart, looks up at her mom, and giggles.

 

Tears fall onto the pages of the cookbook. Marilyn looks around at the wreckage in the room and realizes how deeply she had been in the wrong.

 

The door cracks open. Marilyn looks out. Five-year-old Lydia walks in. Marilyn blinks. It’s actually Hannah, who stares at her and says “Mommy?” Lydia starts crying and ushers Hannah close to her; Hannah rushes to her and puts her arms around her, and Marilyn holds Hannah tight and cries.

 

James drives on the highway, and then he pulls over to clear his head. He looks at a road sign giving directions toward Toledo—he’s been driving that far? He looks down. The image of Nath and Hannah in the stairwell flashes onscreen. James holds his head in his hands—he’s realized that he’s making a mistake.

 

In a parking lot, Officer Fiske notices Nath’s car, where Nath is drinking whiskey by himself. Cut closer to Nath, who vomits out of the window but continues to drink. Nath looks up. The sky beyond the windshield is very clear—perfect weather for fireworks. He looks over and sees Officer Fiske walking toward him. Fiske offers him a ride home. Nath devolves into snot-tears and allows Fiske to guide him to the police car.

 

****

 

Late at night, Lydia enters Nath’s room, where he’s doing last-minute packing for his trip to Harvard. Nath asks for her input on which of two sweaters to pack. Lydia indulges him. Nath finishes packing as Lydia stares sullenly. Nath ushers her to his window and leans out. She leans out with him, and they gaze at the night sky—at all of the stars in the sky. “Isn’t that amazing?” Nath says. Lydia agrees.

 

The next morning, Nath gets ready and James is in the car to drive him to the airport. Lydia gets Nath to promise her to call him when he’s at Harvard. Then he exits the house.

 

We get brief shots of the days without Nath—Lydia waits for the call and it doesn’t come—and on Sunday, Hannah’s following her around upstairs when Lydia notices that she’s wearing the silver necklace. Lydia asks what Hannah’s doing wearing that necklace. Lydia smacks Hannah and grabs her by the necklace. She pulls the necklace in opposite directions, and for a moment, neither of them can breathe. Finally, she snaps the necklace. Lydia gently tells Hannah to promise she’ll never wear that again and tells her she doesn’t have to smile if she doesn’t want to. Hannah runs out.

 

Evening comes. James is in the study, Marilyn watches TV. Lydia sees this, grabs the phone, and sneaks it to her room. In her room, she twists the rotary and calls Nath’s host student. The host student picks up. Lydia asks for Nathan Lee. She waits a moment, and Nath picks up. Lydia asks Nath why he didn’t call her. He asks her if that’s why she’s calling. Lydia says she wants to tell him something.

 

Cut to Nath at the fun Harvard party where students are drinking, where Nath answers her. “Did Mom lecture you on school? Wait, let me guess. You got a present, but it was just a book. Or Dad got you a dress and expects you to wear it. Or maybe at dinner, you had to talk and talk, and you had all the attention. Am I getting warmer?” On the other end of the line, Lydia pleads for Nath to listen, but Nath says he doesn’t have time for it and suggests she take her problems to Jack. He hangs up and looks only a smidge guilty, but rejoins the friends he’s made at the party.

 

Cut back to Lydia in her room. She’s speechless.

 

The next day, Lydia walks downstairs. Hannah glances at her but is no longer willing to greet her. James compliments Lydia on her outfit—she’s wearing some of the nice clothes he got her. Marilyn tells Lydia not to be too late after school because Nath will be home for dinner.

 

After school, Jack waits for Lydia, and she walks to his car. Cut to the car parked at a point that overlooks the town. Jack asks her when Nath is getting back, and Lydia answers “tonight.” They briefly talk about Nath, but Lydia says she doesn’t care whether he comes back or stays away. Then she pulls the box of condoms out from the glove box. She advances, and they kiss.

 

But Jack pulls away. Lydia scoffs and asks if he’s gained morals. Jack says it isn’t her. Lydia’s confused. There’s a long pause.

 

Jack: Nath…

Lydia: Come on. Don’t be afraid of him. He doesn’t matter.

Jack: He matters. He matters to me.

 

Lydia processes this, and she becomes aghast. Jack reveals that his actions with the other girls were just a way to hide his true feelings. Lydia crushes the box of condoms in her hands and tells Jack she’s sorry for him because he’s in love with someone who hates him. Jack stares at Lydia and says, “at least I know who I am. At least I don’t let others tell me what to do. At least I’m not afraid.” This prompts Lydia to step of the car, slam the door shut, and walk away.

 

Lydia walks all the way home. Marilyn sweeps the front porch. Lydia sees she’s holding the condoms and stuffs them in her backpack. Marilyn’s happy to see her and says she’ll help her prepare for exams after dinner. Lydia says she doesn’t need her help and storms inside.

 

That night at dinner, Nath excitedly talks about his experiences at Harvard, and the others ask him questions, but Lydia stares down and ignores the hubbub.

 

That night, she lies awake in bed. Her alarm clock clicks from 1:59 to 2:00. She stands up and walks out of the room. Lydia walks through the neighborhood and toward the lake. She finds the wooden dock, where the rowboat sits. In a graceful sequence, she unties the boat from the dock, gets in, and rows away from the shore. The light of the dock gets further and further away. She stands up and stares at the water. We cut to a money shot—a high-angle shot of Lydia standing in the boat and staring at the water, which ripples only a little bit. Lydia closes her eyes. We get a flashback shot from five-year-old Lydia watching Nath and other kids play in the pool at YMCA. Cut back to Lydia, who commits. We cut to a long shot where Lydia steps out of the boat and plummets like an anvil into the water. We linger on that shot for a while.

 

****

 

Cut from that shot to fireworks bursting in the night sky. The fireworks’ colors splash across James’s car speeding as he drives past the lake—the fireworks are above the lake. He pulls into the driveway and hurries inside of the house. He sees Hannah huddled on the living room floor. Hannah tells him that Marilyn’s upstairs sleeping; Hannah says she told Marilyn he’d come home. James sinks to her level and embraces her.

 

He decides to show Hannah a game he would play with Lydia when she was younger. Hannah climbs onto James’s back, and he repeats, “where’s Lydia, where’s Lydia” as he sneaks around the house. We get James’s first-person POV of him playing this hide-and-seek game with five-year-old Lydia. He finds her, and Lydia giggles as they embrace each other. Cut to Marilyn walking down the hall and peering at the scene of James interacting with Hannah. On James’s back, Hannah asks him if he’ll play that game with her, and of course, his answer is yes.

 

Marilyn then emerges from the hall, and James lets Hannah down. Marilyn reassures Hannah that she just needs to talk with James and that they’ll see her in the morning. Cut to Hannah going upstairs, but stops for a moment. Normally, she’d stop to listen, but this time, she goes ahead and walks upstairs. Marilyn says to James, “I thought you were gone.” James says to Marilyn, “I thought you’d gone.” Cut to them in bed, and they sleep next to one another, cuddling and accepting each other’s embrace.

 

Later that night, Marilyn sits upright, and smiles at James who’s asleep, but gets out of bed. She goes upstairs and peers into Lydia’s room one last time. She sees a ghostly outline of Lydia lying in bed. She stares at it, and her eyes fill with tears.

 

The next morning, Hannah walks downstairs. She looks out the kitchen window and sees Jack exiting his front door with his dog on a leash. We see a shot of Nath seeing Jack from his bedroom window. Nath hurries downstairs, angrily puts his tennis shoes on, and storms outside. Hannah rushes after him. Hannah tries to yell at Nath to stop, saying it’s not Jack’s fault. Nath keeps walking and stares ahead. Hannah tries to grab Nath’s arm, but Nath shakes her off.

 

Jack sits with his dog on the dock, which is still boat-less. Nath steps onto the dock and calls out to Jack. Jack stands up and faces him, his hands in his pockets. Hannah pleads to Nath, for them to go home.

 

Nath: I hope you were thinking about how sorry you are.

Jack: I am so sorry. About what happened to Lydia. About everything.

 

Jack’s dog whimpers and hides behind Hannah.

 

Nath: That doesn’t change anything. Tell me the truth. She went out on that boat for a reason, dammit.

Jack: I thought Lydia told you—I mean, I should have told you myself.

Nath: Told me what? That it’s your fault?

 

Jack stares ahead at him. Nath goes red with anger. Nath punches Jack in the stomach. Jack sinks in pain. Nath pins him down and punches him in the face, giving Jack a bloody nose. Jack doesn’t bother hitting back. Hannah screams at them to stop. Nath gets more hits in, and to stop him, Hannah pushes him off the dock. Nath flails his arms as he falls into the lake.

 

Underneath the surface, we see Nath crash through and sink down into the water. He looks up at the surface. He stays underneath the surface for as long as he can, but his feet begin kicking, and he starts swimming toward the surface.

 

He breaks through, catches his breath, and floats on his back. On the dock, Jack holds his hand out, and Hannah watches intently. Nath swims to the dock and allows Jack to pull him up. Nath catches his breath, as does Jack, who wipes blood off of his mouth. The dog trots back to Jack’s side, and Hannah hurries to Nath.

 

The final shot is a low-angle below the surface of the water, where Jack, Nath, and Hannah all look down at the water—no, through the water, as if it’s one final search for Lydia. Cut to black.

 

 

 

 

Edited by SLAM!
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Walking With Dinosaurs: The Cinematic Experience

Production Companies
: Fossil Record Pictures (CGI animals), Silvertree Studios (live-action backgrounds) 

Director: Richard Diamond*

Release Date: Friday, May 10th, Y8

Genre: Documentary

Rating: PG (some scary natural violence)

Budget: $15M

Theater Count: 1,977 

Runtime: 120 minutes

Narrator: Morgan Freeman
 

The film starts with a scene of a British forest, with the narrator explaining that this location, just like the rest of the world, was once inhabited by dinosaurs. As the narrator describes this, the background begins to fade, with the traces of humanity-- roads, telephone wires, and buildings-- disappear. The same forest is shown in the late Jurassic, 165 million years ago, and zooms in on a mound of soil and leaves on the ground. The mound of debris, the narrator explains, is the nest of a Cetiosaurus, a giant sauropod dinosaur. As the ground begins to move, four juvenile Cetiosaurus--or "sauropodlets"-- dig there way out of the ground, each of them no bigger than a kitten. As they do, they attract the attention of an immature Eustreptospondylus, a fifteen-foot predatory dinosaur. Three of the sauropodlets manage to flee, but the fourth is caught and eaten by the ten-foot-long predator. 

 

We cut to a rocky outcrop overlooking the sea, where a male Ramphorhynchus pterosaur is preening himself and preparing to migrate north for the mating season. He takes off, accompanied by two other males. There follows a detour from the main plot as the male pterosaur makes his way to the same island where the Cetiosaurus lives. The Ramphorhynchus spot a school of fish, and dive to catch them. The narrator comments on how, rather than merely skimming the surface of the water as they were once believed to, these pterosaurs dive after their prey in its own element. One Ramphorhynchus, however, is suddenly snapped up by a Liopleurodon* while diving for fish. The Liopleurodon is a female, and she, too is ready to mate. A male approaches her, and the two of them curiously circle around each other, poking and prodding each other with their snouts. The female is then shown touching her belly to that of the male, with her flippers overlapping his.

 

The creche of sauropodlets have grown, and all of them are now about the size of a sheep. They still remain together for safety, but predators are not the only danger they face. As the creche forages along the edge of a river, they encounter a Lexovisaurus, a member of the stegosaur family with a pair of large spikes protruding from its shoulder. The Lexovisaurus is, as the narrator remarks, "not particularly bright", and begins to swing its spiked tail in anger at the sight of intruders. Before the sauropodlets can flee, a full-grown Eustreptospondylus appears. It ignores the sauropodlets, and instead confronts the Lexovisaurus. The Eustreptospondylus dodges a swipe of the Lexovisaurus's thagomizer, and rushes at the stegosaur head-on. The Lexovisaurus simply lowers its head, presenting its massive shoulder spikes to its attacker. The Eustreptospondylus bites down on one of the shoulder spikes, and the Lexovisaurus desperately tries to shake it off. The sauropodlets flee into the deeper forest. The next day, the same scene is shown, and there is no sign of either dinosaur, save for a broken-off piece of the Lexovisaurus' shoulder spike. 

Months pass, and the Liopleurodon female is ready to give birth. She ascends to the surface of the water, and as she does, her five-foot-long baby emerges from her cloaca. She gently nudges her newborn to the surface, where it takes its first gulp of air. However, she will provide no care for him beyond this-- he is able to fend for himself immediately after being born. Meanwhile, the Ramphorhynchus are also mating, and the particular male who we last followed has found a position for himself in the middle of a giant mating group, or lek, of male pterosaurs. When a female arrives, they mate briefly, and then the female flies off to lay her eggs on her own. For the moment, it seems as though things are perfect. But these good times are about to come to an end. 

A massive hurricane sweeps the island, leveling forests and destroying delicate shallow sea environments. Two of the remaining young Cetiosaurus are killed in the storm, and when the skies clear a further casualty is revealed-- the female Liopleurodon. She has washed up on the shore, and her body is being picked over by scavenging Ramphorhynchus and Eustreptospondylus. The narrator remarks that, although she is dead, she was a successful individual: her baby is still alive, and she has given birth to many young over the course of her life.

 

 The movie cuts to ten years later. The last surviving Cetiosaurus is now a twenty-foot-long young adult, and has found a herd of his own to join. As he does, he is being watched by a Eustreptospondylus. The predator attacks him, and the young Cetiosaurus attempts to scare it away by thrashing his tail and rearing onto his hind legs. The predator, however, is not repelled, and continues its attack, only to be knocked off its feet by the tail of a much larger, fully grown Cetiosaurus. The young male joins the adult’s herd, and the camera gradually zooms out on the Cetiosaurus grazing, while the Ramphorhynchus flies overhead.

 

*shown at its correct 21-foot size, not 80 feet as in the original series. 

Edited by El Squibbonator
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Citizen Kale: a VeggieTales Movie

Studio: New Journey Pictures Animation

Directors: Phil Vischer & Mike Nawrocki

Genre: Family/Animation

Release Date: March 29th, Y8

Theater Count: 3,300

MPAA Rating: G for General Audiences

Budget: $20 Million

Runtime: 1 hr 23 min

 

Voice Cast

Chris Pratt guest stars as Citizen Kale, with the original VeggieTales voice cast reprising their roles--Phil Vischer voices Bob, etc.

 

Spoiler
Spoiler

It's the 1940s in New York City, and Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber are entertainers performing comedic skits at a fancy club in the city. Larry struggles to juggle bowling pins on a unicycle and ends up damaging the nightclub, which leads to Bob and Larry being fired from their consistent gigs. They look for work and find a job listing for an upstart journalism company, so they decide to apply for the job of being paperboys and deliver newspapers to the people in the city. Citizen Kale (Chris Pratt), a bundle of kale, is the very friendly and energetic boss of the New York Veggie Inquirer, and he shows them around the business; Petunia Rhubarb works as a receptionist, the French Peas are printers, and Jimmy and Jerry Gourd are journalists who enjoy eating doughnuts.

 

Citizen Kale takes Bob and Larry into his office and explains that his newspaper specializes in sharing exciting stories with the citizens. Bob and Larry are excited about that, but then Kale shares what the story is that they're printing for the next day's paper--that there's a Frankenstein monster hiding in the library! Bob and Larry look at him in confusion--"shouldn't we be telling the truth, Mr. Kale?" But Citizen Kale wants to paper to run the story because it's an exciting story that would grab people's interest. Bob and Larry exchange a look.

 

Early next morning, Bob, Larry, Junior Asparagus, Laura Carrot, and Lenny Carrot, and Annie Onion line up on their bikes. The garage-door-ish door opens, and Petunia stands in front of them waving a checkered flag--"Ready? GO!"--and with a wave, the paperboys are off to pedal throughout the city and deliver the newspapers. There's a montage of all of them delivering the newspapers. Bob and Larry meet up after delivering, and Larry asks Bob what he thinks will happen after they delivered the papers, and Bob doesn't have an answer.

 

Cut to the library, where Archibald Asparagus is shaking his head because even he didn't believe that there was a Frankenstein monster in his library. (The paper shows a photoshopped image of the celery stick from Where's God When I'm S-Scared in one of the aisles of bookshelves.) Mr. Nezzer and Mr. Lunt, police officers, walk inside to help Archibald find the Frankenstein monster. Hijinks ensue because the "monster"--it's Phil Winklestein the celery stick, but out of costume because he's an actor--is reading a library book in the aisle, and they try to arrest him, but they end up knocking over all of the shelves like dominoes. They discover that it was a misunderstanding spurred by fake news, so Archibald whistles, summoning the trio of scallions, who are lawyers. Archibald wants to sue the New York Veggie Inquirer.

 

Cut to Citizen Kale's office, where Citizen Kale's really happy because the paper was a big success. Then the scallions walk in and put a paper on Citizen Kale's desk, telling him that Archibald wants to sue him. Citizen Kale is unfazed by the suing, and he bursts into a song about the joys and benefits of settling out of court ("Everybody's Happy"). He leaves to take care of the situation personally, leaving Bob and Larry to work on the next front-page story with Jimmy and Jerry Gourd.

 

Jimmy and Jerry Gourd want to write a weather forecast that claims it'll rain doughnuts from the sky, but Bob convinces them not to do that. Larry then sees that the next front-page article is about veggie-sized sporks rampaging through the city--he's worried that it'll cause pandemonium, but the gourds shrug it off because it's not like anyone will believe the story anyway. Citizen Kale returns because he already settled out of court with Archibald, and he applauds the gourds for working on a great story. Then he adds suggestions to add graphic details--like adding the "woosh" and the "bam" and the "pow." Bob raises an eyebrow and asks if he wants them to add in the onomatopeia. Citizen Kale says yes, because it'll cause an onomatosplosion. He walks back inside his office, and Bob and Larry exchange a look.

 

The next morning, Bob and Larry get their bikes ready, and they talk with Junior, who acknowledges that it's not right to distribute a newspaper with fake news in it, but he doesn't have a choice because his family's poor and they need the money for living expenses. Petunia waves them off, and the paperboys begin going through their routes, and Bob catches up to Larry and says that they shouldn't distribute the papers because of the fake news about the rampaging sporks. Bob eventually convinces Larry, and they get to work and try to retrieve the papers before anyone is able to read them. Hijinks ensue as they rush around the city to retrieve the papers. The sun rises, and they meet up--but they forgot one of the neighborhoods! Uh oh!

 

Cut to Madame Blueberry fixing herself coffee and reading the paper. She does a double-take. She goes to the rotary phone and dials 911. She stutters are lot and reports to the police that the sporks are rampaging through the city. We cut to the streets, as people are running around trying to protect themselves from the nonexistent mob of sporks. Everyone's in panic mode!

 

Cut to Citizen Kale playing with action figures in his office, and Bob and Larry walk in and throw their newspapers on his desk, telling him that they think it's wrong to spread fake news around the city. Citizen Kale laughs because he thinks everyone loves the New York Veggie Inquirer. He's wrong, as citizens are surrounding the building with picket signs. Citizen Kale tells Jimmy and Jerry Gourd to do something, so they open the front door and offer the crowd doughnuts, but the crowd funnels into the building and the gourds say, "well that was a bad decision." Bob and Larry tell Citizen Kale to get to the bike room, so the three of them get on bikes and bike away from the crowd.

 

They rides their bikes all the way to an alleyway, and Bob and Larry ask him why he allows his newspaper to print fake news, and Citizen Kale admits that he wants his business to get noticed because he wants to find his mama. When he was little, he and his mama went sledding on a snowy day, and he went down a steep hill, but once he made it to the bottom, he couldn't find his mama. Bob and Larry resolve to help Citizen Kale find his mama, so they go back to the park where they lost each other, and Citizen Kale's mama is looking for "Billy". They reunite and give each other a hug. Then they sit on a park bench together while Bob and Larry stand in front of them, and Citizen Kale tells his mama about his newspaper and how he prints fake news to get attention. The mama suggests that he print truth instead. And not just any truth--the truth about Jesus! Citizen Kale thinks it's a brilliant idea, and the characters celebrate!

 

They go back to the building, where the workers are lamenting that a lot of the equipment is damaged, but they can still print one more daily paper before people's subscriptions run out. Bob and Larry suggest the headline "God made you special and he loves you very much", and everyone likes that headline. They print out the paper and distribute it around the city, and everyone reads it and forgives him, and in a radio interview, Citizen Kale publically promises never to print fake news ever again. Jimmy and Jerry Gourd throw a doughnut party for all of the characters, and they stand together, look at the viewers. Citizen Kale says, "and the moral of the story is...", and everyone shouts, "TELL THE TRUTH!" Then they all celebrate together, and the film ends.

 

Edited by SLAM!
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