I think this might be the most devotion I've ever given anything... I've made some pretty brutal cuts to the smut, added a flashback (key feature in a Noir), cleaned up the dialogue (if I can't hear it in the voice of Bogart or Bacall, I cut it), and added an ending that I think actually might work in a "shaggy dog" kind of way... Oh, and I also added an actual shaggy dog...Enjoy! :o)
BOLD = My changes
UNDERLINED = Pilfered from another peep
BOLD AND UNDERLINED =Inspired by someone else's idea
The Dark –Noir/Hard-Boiled (Detective) Electrician Thriller
EXT. STREET – NIGHT
A typical dark, wet, city street from any Noir film. A 2n d storey building window features the name “Lightfoot Electrical” stenciled on it.
It was raining. (Sound of RAIN) The kind of rain that always seems to be accompanied by a lone saxophone. (SAX starts) In a city like this, even the soundtrack ends up in the gutters.
A tiny, cramped and cluttered office containing a desk, filing cabinets, impossibly slow ceiling fan, and business name stenciled on door. Light from the street cuts through the venetian blinds casting shadows. A worn out looking man LIGHTFOOT, sits with his feet up on the desk which contains nothing else but a bottle of cheap liquor. He’s dressed like a typical hard-boiled detective, except he’s actually an electrician.
The sign on my door said I was open for business. But the files on my desk said there was none.
(He tosses a wad of utility bills down, electric bill on top)
Seemed the only people looking for an electrician in this city were the electric board. I needed to find a way to pay up or it was going to be lights out. So I lit a cigarette.
(He lights a cigarette, takes a drag and contemplates the impossibly slow moving ceiling fan)
A young, well dressed woman, LUX LUMIERE enters.
NARRATOR (VO) CONT.
I could tell the moment I saw her, the dame in the doorway was trouble.
She had eyes like a cup of Costa Rican and a set of pins you could plug in and ride to the moon. It was a trip I wouldn’t mind taking. But in a town like this, you could just as easy end up on the dark side. So I settled for the coffee.
The guy downstairs says you’re the guy to see about a light bulb…
…She says, her voice soft and low like Edison’s first incandescent.
The guy downstairs would be right. Say, you’re Lux Lumiere, Charlie Black’s girl? Why don’t you get him to change your light bulb?
I think Charlie’s fixing some other bulbs.
That so huh? Well I don’t think he’d appreciate me poking around your sockets. I think the last guy who crossed wires, blew a fuse faster than you can say AC/DC.
It’s just a 40 watt. Charlie doesn’t need to find out. Can’t you help a girl out?
(She smiles and bats her eyelashes)
I had a feeling this was going to end badly. Like the time the squirrel got into the fuse box. But I decided to help her anyway. With legs like those, how could I refuse?
A typical city apartment as inhabited by a 1950s femme fatale. All the usual furniture etc. the only noteworthy fact being that there are many lamps, of which at least half are switched on.
It’s just through here, in the other room…
I followed her in. Her apartment was lit up like Times Square on New Year’s Eve. I couldn’t believe this broad needed any more light but I followed her anyway, like a moth to a flame.
(They make their way into the apartment, she removing gloves and hat as she goes while switching on more lights.)
It’s the bulb in here…
(Gestures toward the dark doorway and glances back at LIGHTFOOT who suddenly looks scared)
FLASHBACK – DARK CLOSET FROM LIGHTFOOT’S CHILDHOOD
YOUNG LIGHTFOOT (dressed the same as now) sits alone in a dark closet blindfolded looking desperately eager.
…And all at once, it was Bobby Carmichael’s birthday, the game was Seven Minutes in Heaven and things had taken a shocking turn.
(A big, shaggy dog sat next to him gives him a wet lick; to which he responds by screaming and running out of the closet. The sound of CHILDREN LAUGHING follows.)
BACK TO PRESENT DAY
…Say, what’s the matter with you? You look like someone wired your plug with the wrong amp fuse.
(Snapping out of it)
Hey! You didn’t say anything about a closet.
It’s just a closet. Say, don’t tell me you’re afraid of the dark.
(LIGHTFOOT just stands there sweating)
Oh… Wait until I tell the girls about this!
And just like that, I was heading into her black hole.
(They both enter the closet and close the door behind them.)
Inside the closet is total darkness. Sounds of HEAVY BREATHING, RUSTLING and FUMBLING.
The inside of the closet was dark. You’d think there would be more metaphors for the dark, but I was all out. It also seemed like it might have been a smart move to leave the door open, but the dark makes you do funny things.
Say, is that a bulb in your pocket or are you just please to see me?
It’s a bulb.
Oh… The end is kind of funny...
This lightbulb has a bayonet fitting.
Oh, how continental!
I can’t find the hole.
To the left… No not there!
(Sound of GLASS BREAKING)
A fat mobster-type guy CHARLIE BLACK enters, throws his hat down on the table and starts to make his way through the apartment; turning off some of the lamps as he goes.
What about now?
No… Try wiggling it…
Oh, I had no idea you could do it like that!
Takes a real electrician to know.
(Sound of SOMETHING FALLING OVER.)
(Sound of a SWITCH BEING THROWN followed by the light coming on)
A small but crowded walk-in closet. LIGHTFOOT and LUX are standing in close proximity with a light bulb dangling between them. She looks coy, he looks flustered.
See? Not so bad after all, huh?
(LIGHTFOOT looks around.)
I guess not…
(looking her straight in the eye)
LUX stares back, batting her eye lashes like a femme fatale would. They lean in for the 1950s Hollywood smooch… When suddenly the closet door is yanked open, revealing CHARLIE BLACK with a gun.
Of all the closets, in all the towns, in all the world, he had to bust into ours.
If dark matter’s responsible for everything that happens in the universe, then Charlie Black was responsible for all the dark matters in this city. You could bet if a switch got thrown, Black had his finger on the toggle. I was worried about my toggle.
Charlie, baby! It’s not what it looks like…
It looks like he’s changing your bulb.
Then it’s exactly what it looks like…
Bright spark, eh? You think you’re the first guy I’ve caught changing her bulbs? This broad’s been leaving lights on all over town.
That’s the trouble with dames. They dazzle you with sparkly lights and before you know it, you’re behind the eight staring down the business end of a bean-shooter.
(LIGHTFOOT makes to leave)
Not so fast lightning. I’ve got a couple lights on the roof you can take a look at.
I really hoped he wasn’t referring to the kind you walk toward... Especially not off a roof.
(LIGHTFOOT leaves with CHARLIE behind him with the gun. Lux is left sulking in the closet.)
EXT. ROOFTOP – NIGHT
A poorly lit roof top. The only thing on the roof is an old-fashioned roof-top sign, the type where light bulbs spell out the words. We can’t make out what the sign says as all the bulbs are dark.
CHARLIE motions LIGHTFOOT across the roof, who is under the impression he is going to be made to jump, until Charlie indicates toward the dark sign.
Light her up and there’s a couple of cabbages in it for you.
(LIGHTFOOT looks relieved. )
Turns out, he was talking about an actual light. In a film like this, you never can tell.
These babies are a lot less complicated than they look. All it takes is one bad bulb…
(twisting random bulbs)
There’s a flicker as the sign comes on. The bulbs spell “THE END”.*
*If the ending isn’t “Bang” enough, cut to street level. The sax player is getting rained on by a sprinkler being held by the tech crew, Lux exits the building walking a big shaggy dog and on the roof in front of the sign, the silhouette of Charlie shoots the silhouette of Lightfoot who falls back into the sign causing it to momentarily flare and burst into flames! Does an actual “Bang” count? ;o)
Also, it may still need a closing VO… any opinions?
Created: Jul 19, 2014Document Media