"In writing fiction, the more fantastic the tale, the plainer the prose should be. Don't ask your readers to admire your words when you want them to believe your story." - Ben Bova [ more quotes ]

"HARDCORE"

Screenplay by

Paul Schrader

SHOOTING DRAFT



FADE IN:

CREDITS

Credits are played over Currier and Ives-like winter scenes
from life in Grand Rapids. It's Christmas morning.

-- Two well-bundled youths shovel out a suburban driveway
while their father scrapes ice off the family car.

-- Youths pelter a passing car with snowballs. Others, more
daring companions, grab onto the car's rear bumper and hitch
a free ride across the icy roads and past a sign which reads
"Grand Rapids City Limits."

-- Christmas decorations hang from the lamp posts on Monroe
Avenue.

-- Children, dressed in bright parkas, and breathing steam,
compare their Christmas presents: sleds, skis and a toboggan.
In the b.g., other children speed down Richmond Park Hill.

-- A woman's distant voice sings an old hymn:

"Precious memories, unseen angels,
Sent from somewhere to my soul,
How they linger ever near me,
And the sacred past unfolds.
Precious memories, how they linger,
How they ever flood my soul,
In the stillness of the midnight,
Precious sacred scenes unfold.
Precious father, loving mother,
Fly across the lonely years,
And old home scenes of my childhood
In fond memories appear."

END CREDITS.

INT. VAN DORN HOUSE - KITCHEN - DAY

Four generations of the Van Dorn family have gathered at the
family home.

A long kitchen leads to the dining area, then to the spacious
living room.

The house is perhaps one hundred years old; deeply varnished
woodwork and patterned yellow wallpaper section off the walls.

Apart from several recent tasteless acquisitions (an E-Z Boy
lounge chair to replace the old Queen Anne which broke two
Easters ago), the house remains furnished in the style of
the previous century. The old dining room table, which
Grandfather Van Dorn built because he was too cheap to buy
one, has now become a priceless antique.

The rooms are littered with religious calendars, Bibles and
plaster-of-Paris plaques bearing such sentiments as "As For
Me and My House, We Will Serve the Lord." The oak buffet is
laden with similar religious knickknacks and chintz. Framed,
tinted photographs of the family patriarchs are
indiscriminately mixed with newer snapshots of proud fathers
and high school graduates.

The house radiates a sense of continuity. Generations come
and go; the family remains. All of life's "old home scenes"
have been played out here: births, deaths, romances,
blasphemies, betrayals. And now the air is again alive with
the sounds of playing children, busy housewives and bickering
uncles.

The kitchen is crowded with mothers, daughters and aunts.
Each has brought a special dish. ANNE DE JONG (nee Van Dorn),
thirty-five, supervises the final preparations. One aunt
shows another snapshots of her new grandchild.

JAKE VAN DORN, forty, and his brother JOE, fifty, sit at the
table watching the kitchen activity.

The house echoes with small talk:

AUNT
...He got accepted at Grand Valley,
but he'd rather go to Michigan...

NEPHEW #1
...Get that pink rot...

NEPHEW #2
...No way Uncle Joe talk me into
cutting celery again this summer.
Rather work in the car wash.

As the CAMERA TRACKS THROUGH the dining room, it passes a
cluster of men standing near the buffet. WES DE JONG and
JOHN VAN DORN, both about forty, casually discuss a
theological point with GRANDFATHER VAN DORN. Across the table,
a young boy, about eleven, listens with rapt awe.

These are men of the soil. Their faces are sun-blotched and
weather-beaten. Wes has rolled up the sleeves of his white
shirt; John has switched to a more comfortable plaid.

JOHN
...I still say that if a man has
committed the unpardonable sin, he
knows he has.

Grandfather nods head approvingly.

WES
I don't know about that, John. It
don't seem to account much for God's
grace.

JOHN
What kind of grace do you mean,
universal or specific...?

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. BASEMENT - DAY

A long line of folding tables have been set up in the
basement. A mixed assortment of chairs can accommodate thirty
or more persons. A pre-teen daughter helps her mother place
dishes and silverware on the tablecloths. Evergreen branches
and red candles decorate the tables.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. DEN - DAY

Most of the teenagers have crowded into what was once called
the study, but is now the "television room." KRISTEN VAN
DORN, fourteen, and MARSHA DE JONG, fifteen, are scrunched
onto the sofa. Kristen has long blonde hair, a clean Dutch
complexion and an unaffected beauty. The girls' legs are
innocently wrapped around each other's.

JOE, forty-five, another of the Van Dorn brothers, and a
male cousin about nineteen, are also squeezed on the sofa.
Young children squat on the floor in front of them. All are
watching some inane Christmas variety show.

Joe, bored of this tripe, gets up and turns off the set. The
children wail in unison. "Aw, c'mon, Uncle Joe."

JOE
I'm sick of watching this television
stuff. You know who makes it? All
the kids who couldn't get along here.
They go out to California and make
television. I didn't like 'em when
they were here, and I don't like 'em
out there.

One of the youngsters reaches over and snaps the set back on
as Joe leaves the room.

CUT TO:

INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

As Joe leaves the den, he passes Jake Van Dorn and Wes De
Jong. Unlike his older brother, Jake is not a man of the
soil. He has been to college and runs his own business. He
looks well-groomed and comfortable in his navy suit, white
shirt and striped tie. Wes is Jake's brother-in-law and
friend. They get along well enough.

JOE
(to Jake and Wes)
Television. If you don't buy one
yourself, the kids go someplace else
and watch. And what do they sell on
television? More televisions.

JAKE
(light)
They got to make their money, too,
Joe. Give the kids a break. It's
Christmas.

Joe shrugs and walks into the dining room.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. BASEMENT - DAY

Anne listens as NADINE, her sister-in-law, about forty, and
RUTH, her niece, about twenty, help her set out celery and
carrot stalks.

RUTH
...and they hadn't heard a word from
him before he died.

Three children, BILL, LENARD and JANE, ages six to ten, walk
over to the three mothers. Lenard, six years old, wears a
blanket over his head in mock Biblical dress.

BILL
Aunt Ruth, can we use Timmy for the
Nativity play? We need him to play
the Christ-child.

RUTH
But Timmy's only six months old.

BILL
We won't hurt him. I'm going to be
Joseph, Jane's Mary and Lenard will
be one of the shepherds.

Bill looks at blanket-headed Lenard, who has no idea of what's
going on.

RUTH
I don't think so...

NADINE
You can't do that. That's blasphemy.
If anybody pretends to be Christ,
it's blasphemy.

BILL
But he's only a baby.

Anne nods in agreement. Bill seems disappointed.

INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

Jake and West stand with their arms around their respective
daughters, Kristen and Marsha. The girls squirm and giggle
politely.

JAKE
(teasing Marsha)
Your dad and I aren't sure you and
Kristen should go on the YC Convention
tomorrow.

KRISTEN
Oh, Dad.

Wes plays along:

WES
I don't know, Kristen, that's a long
trip to be on a bus with all those
boys.

MARSHA
You mean those creeps.

KRISTEN
There are more chaperones than boys
anyway.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. BASEMENT - DAY

Every family is in place. The social order is complete:
grandfather, parents, children, grandchildren. The long table
is stacked high with salads, casseroles, and vegetables.

The diners turn their heads toward Jake who stands at the
far end of the table, his closed fists pressed against the
tabletop. He lowers his head in prayer.

One of the mothers, looking at her son, Lenard, quickly pulls
the blanket off his head.

The CAMERA TRACKS ACROSS the table toward Jake.

JAKE
We thank the Lord for bringing this
family together at graduation time.
We ask Thee to watch over this family
and keep us together in the coming
year.

CUT TO:

EXT. JAKE'S HOUSE - MORNING

Two cars are parked in the driveway of Van Dorn's suburban
ranch-style home.

CUT TO:

INT. KRISTEN'S ROOM - MORNING

Marsha sits on the bed as Kristen finishes packing her
suitcase.

The items include: a bright red sweater, jeans, underclothes,
Tampax, and a Bible.

CUT TO:

INT. DINING AREA - MORNING

Jake, Wes and Anne wait in the spotless dining area. Harold
Jay looks in the refrigerator.

JAKE
(to Anne)
Sis, would you check if Kristen has
everything packed?

Anne nods and walks into the bedroom.

WES
You want to go for coffee after we
send the girls off?

JAKE
No. Thanks anyway. I've got to get
over to the office.

WES
Anne wants to make sure you come
over for dinner Sunday. With Kristen
gone you'll be all alone.

Jake nods.

Kristen, wearing a light blue sweater and skirt, emerges
from the bedroom. She smiles demurely.

Her suitcase is in her hand. Jake, for a moment, feels a
sharp twinge of loss. A foreboding of the day when Kristen,
fully grown, will leave his house for good.

CUT TO:

EXT. TWELFTH ST. CHURCH - DAY

Parents watch their children board a snow-covered bus outside
Twelfth St. Church. A banner across the side of the bus reads:

YOUNG CALVINIST CONVENTION

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. -- BELLFLOWER, CALIF.

Most of the parents, working folk long accustomed to the
brutal Michigan winters, wear heavy overcoats, bearskin caps,
fur-lined gloves and galoshes.

Jake, bare-headed and wearing a thin topcoat over his suit,
waits with Kristen, Marsha, Wes and Anne. Harold Jay pelts
the side of the bus with a snowball.

MRS. STEENSMA, one of the trip counselors, reads off the
youngsters' names as they board the bus:

MRS. STEENSMA
...Daverman, DeBeer, DeBoer, DeJong,
DeVries...

Marsha kisses her parents goodbye and heads toward the bus.

MRS. STEENSMA
(continuing)
...Vander Ark, Vander Hoven, Vander
Keen, Van Dorn, Van Dyke, E., Van
Dyke, S...

When Kristen hears her name she starts toward the bus, then
stops, comes back and gives her father a farewell kiss.

JAKE
Take care of yourself, Kristen. I
love you.

KRISTEN
I will, Daddy.

JAKE
If you need anything, just call.

Later, amid horn-honking and farewells, the bus pulls away
from the curb and heads down the snowy street.

INT. BUS - DAY

A sigh of relief goes up from the adolescent conventioneers:
wheew! There are a few isolated cries of "We're on our way!"

A teenager instantly flips on his transistor RADIO to metal
ROCK. Once away from home, these kids, like all kids, are
the children of 1976. The old family glue doesn't hold. They
live in the world of rock and television.

CUT TO:

INT. FACTORY - DAY

Workmen fashion table legs on a wood lathe. In another part
of the factory, laborers assemble chair frames.

Jake walks along the assembly line with MARY, a well-dressed,
attractive employee about twenty-five. They turn a corner
and step into a display area where a set features the Van
Dorn Co.'s new modular office designs.

Mary shows Jake the set for his approval.

JAKE
Is this all the display space we can
get?

MARY
I tried to get more, but this is the
limit. The De Vries line has the
same area.

Mary is a cool, efficient display designer. Jake studies a
patch of bright blue on the right wall.

JAKE
What do you think of this... ah,
shade of blue, Mary.

MARY
I like it, Mr. Van Dorn.

JAKE
Don't you think it's a little too...
bright?

MARY
Not really. But if you want me to
tone it down...

JAKE
No, no. I wouldn't hire a display
designer if I didn't trust her taste.
Maybe we should bring in more of
that shade. Perhaps a stripe across
the back wall.

He gestures.

Gently, relentlessly, Jake manipulates Mary. He does not
wish to impose his taste on her but, through calculated
argument, will get her to accept his views. It's only a matter
of time before he wears her down.

MARY
No, that would be much too
overpowering.

JAKE
Yeah, overpowering. That was the
word I was looking for.

MARY
(sensing his ploy)
Mr. Van Dorn, I've worked on the
color scheme for weeks. I think it's
just right.

JAKE
What's that shade of blue called?

MARY
Pavonine. It's the same tint as the
stripe in the fabric.

Jake bends down and examines the chair.

JAKE
Are you still going with that fella
that teaches at Grand Valley?

MARY
Sam?

JAKE
Yeah. He's a nice guy. Don't lose
him. Maybe we could tone down this
stripe a bit. It's a little...

MARY
(catching on)
Overpowering?

JAKE
Yeah.

MARY
(gives in)
Okay, Mr. Van Dorn, I think we could
knock that Pavonine blue a bit.

JAKE
Are you sure it's all right?

MARY
Yes. I think it'll look better.

JAKE
If you say so.

Mary watches him a moment and thinks.

MARY
Kristen went on that convention today,
didn't she?

JAKE
(mildly surprised)
Yeah. How did you know?

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

Jake lies in bed, sleeping. Blue light falls across his face.
He is dreaming.

CUT TO:

EXT. BELLFLOWER CHURCH - DAY

A row of church buses are parked in the lot of First Christian
Reformed Church, Bellflower, California.

They have come from the various other Christian Reformed
communities around the country: Zeeland, Michigan, Midland
Park, New Jersey, Sioux Center, Iowa, Ripon, California.

Clusters of youths sit on the church steps and spacious lawns.

CUT TO:

INT. MEETING ROOM - DAY

A hand-lettered poster on an easel reads: "Today's Topic:
Doctrine -- Relevant or Old-Fashioned?"

A slight, pretty GIRL about fifteen stands up before the
discussion group. She wears an Elton John T-shirt and name
tag. She holds her Bible with both hands.

GIRL
Even though the doctrinal standards
were written a long time ago, I think
they are more relevant than ever.
Especially in this age of
permissiveness and "anything goes..."

CUT TO:

EXT. BELLFLOWER CHURCH - DAY

Kristen and Marsha stand near a tree. Kristen is wearing her
red sweater and jeans.

Nearby, a group of boys sit in a circle on the grass telling
jokes and listening to metal rock on a transistor radio.

KRISTEN
You going to Knott's Berry Farm with
him?

MARSHA
He asked me. You going with anybody?

KRISTEN
(shrugs)
I don't know.

MARSHA
You ever play Chicken?

KRISTEN
What's that?

MARSHA
(teasing)
You never heard of that?

KRISTEN
Com'on, tell me.

MARSHA
Well, a boy goes like this, see.

Using her finger, Marsha traces a looping oval around
Kristen's right breast, starting at the neck, working down
to the midriff, and back up her left side.

KRISTEN
What does that do?

MARSHA
Well, each time he comes in closer,
like this.

Marsha traces another circle inside the first one. She draws
a narrowing spiral around Kristen's breast.

MARSHA
(continuing)
He keeps coming closer until you say
"Chicken." Then he stops.

The girls giggle.

KRISTEN
You and Jerry do that?

Mrs. Steensma steps out onto the lawn and calls to Kristen
and Marsha:

MRS. STEENSMA
Kristen, Marsha! Time for your
discussion group.

MARSHA
(grudgingly)
Oh, all right.

MRS. STEENSMA
And put your name tags back on.

The girls pull their name tags out of their jeans and clip
them on as they walk back toward the church.

CUT TO:

INT. TWELFTH STREET CHURCH

REVEREND VANTIL, a stately man about fifty, stands at the
pulpit. The front of the church is plain and stark, adorned
only by a large wooden cross.

The Christian Reformed Church is not one which believes in
emotional appeals or confessions. It is a religion of
scripture, creed and doctrine. Reverend Vantil, dressed in
black, addresses the congregation as if he were a businessman.
And his business is sin, guilt and redemption.

He speaks calmly and powerfully. The church echoes with the
weight of his words:

REV. VANTIL
...our study of the Heidelberg
Catechism, reading today Lords Day
number one, question and answer one
and two:
(reads)
Q: What is your only comfort in life
and death? A: That I, body and soul,
both in life and death, am not my
own but belong unto my faithful Savior
Jesus Christ. Q: How many things are
necessary to know to live and die
happily? A: Three: the first, how
great my sin and misery are; the
second, how I am delivered from all
my sin and misery; the third, how I
am to be thankful to God for such
deliverance.

Later. The CAMERA TRACKS UP the aisle as the congregation
rises to sing the doxology. Jake stands with his sister and
brother-in-law.

CUT TO:

EXT. TWELFTH STREET CHURCH - DAY

The parishioners, fighting off the winter cold, work their
way to their cars.

CUT TO:

INT. DE JONG HOME - DAY

Jake, Wes, Anne and Harold Jay pass dishes around the De
Jong's dining room.

ANNE
...as soon as the service starts,
the ushers all go off to Big Boy's
and have coffee...

The PHONE RINGS.

ANNE
(continuing)
I'll get it.
(gets up)
So that when someone like Mrs. Van
Dorn in a wheelchair needs some help
there's nobody there.

She walks into the living room. After a moment, Anne walks
back into the room.

ANNE
(continuing)
It's for you, Jake.

Van Dorn excuses himself, walks into the living room and
answers the phone. His VOICE can be HEARD in the background

ANNE
(continuing)
Well, I just hope I don't get old
and in a wheelchair and have to depend
on the ushers to help me out of
church.
(to Harold Jay)
You would never let that happen to
your mother, would you?

Harold Jay nods and keeps eating. He's used to this.

A moment later, Jake, his face drained of color, walks back
into the room.

WES
What is it, Jake?

JAKE
Wes, Anne, come here a moment.

Wes and Anne step into the living room.

JAKE
That was Mrs. Steensma calling from
California.
(a beat)
Kristen's disappeared.

ANNE
Kristen?

WES
What happened?

JAKE
They don't know. They were having
some recreation deal out at Knott's
Berry Farm and Kristen wasn't there
when they got back to the bus and
they couldn't find her.

ANNE
Have they called the police?

JAKE
Yeah.

WES
Is Marsha there?

JAKE
Yeah. She's quite upset. I'm going
to fly out today. They want me to
bring some pictures.

WES
I'll come with you. Let me pack some
things.

He starts to walk away.

CUT TO:

EXT. L.A. INTERNATIONAL - DAY

A United Jet lands. Marsha's VOICE is HEARD from the following
scene.

CUT TO:

INT. BELLFLOWER HOME - DAY

Jake and Wes sit near Marsha. Mrs. Steensma stands nearby.

MARSHA
...They have a ride called "The Great
White Knuckler", a roller coaster.
Last time I saw Kristen was standing
over there...

WES
Why was she alone?

He looks at Mrs. Steensma. Marsha is hiding something: She
was off necking when Kristen disappeared.

JAKE
Was she alone?

MARSHA
I told this to the policeman.

MRS. STEENSMA
They had met an older boy earlier.

MARSHA
But she wasn't with him when I saw
her last.

MRS. STEENSMA
She tried to give the officers a
description. It was nothing out of
the ordinary.

CUT TO:

INT. L.A. POLICE DEPARTMENT - DAY

DETECTIVE BURROWS, of Missing Persons, carries Kristen's
picture and a form Jake has filled out into the "Runaway
Room". Jake and Wes follow.

One long wall is covered with tacked-up snapshots of persons
(mostly young) the police are looking for. Each snapshot is
attached to a small form listing the missing person's name,
age, home and so forth. A sign above the photo montage reads:
"Have you seen this person?"

Burrows tacks up Kristen's picture on the Missing Persons
wall.

BURROWS
The boy your daughter was talking to
didn't work at the park. We've
interviewed everybody there.

JAKE
But is she, has...

BURROWS
There's no evidence of any foul play
at present. I hope she's just a
runaway.

JAKE
There's something wrong here. Kristen
is not the type of girl to just up
and leave.

BURROWS
I said I hope she's a runaway. Better
that than she just disappears like
so many others do. Sometimes they
turn up years later, sometimes not.
A lot of crimes go unreported,
unknown. These are realities.

JAKE
What are you doing?

BURROWS
Two officers have been assigned to
the case. I can't keep them on
indefinitely, but we'll go through
every lead.

CUT TO:

EXT. DOWNTOWN - DAY

Another day, Jake and Wes, wearing different clothes, walk
with ANDY MAST, a private investigator, down an L.A. street.

They walk silently, Mast, forty, a stocky man in a wrinkled
suit, looks like he's been up all night. He probably has.

Mast motions to a coffee shop and they enter.

CUT TO:

INT. COFFEE SHOP - DAY

Mast, slouching in the booth, sips his coffee.

MAST
Those cops, like all cops, are
intelligent enough, but they are
masters of de-ductive reason. That
is, you ask them what three and two
are they'll tell you five, but if
you ask them what five is, they go
blank. That's spec-u-lative reasoning,
and that's where I come in.

JAKE
Well, what do they know?

MAST
Dogshit. Worse yet, they don't care.

JAKE
So then, Mr. Mast...

MAST
Andy.

JAKE
...What do you have to offer?

MAST
Let me ask you a personal question,
a painful one. The first of many.
Tell me, was your daughter the kind
of girl to run around, to, ah, play
practical jokes, maybe?

Van Dorn answers him with a cold stare.

MAST
(continuing)
No, I didn't think she was. Let me
get the picture here. Let me guess.
She was an absolutely clean girl, a
model daughter, she never had
rebellious or impure thoughts, she
didn't fuck around...

JAKE
If I was you, Mr. Mast, I'd watch my
language.

MAST
Hey, I'm a private detective, Van
Dorn, you want to hire a choir boy
you can go back to Grand Rapids.
I've been to that scumbag town. It's
full of them.

JAKE
(cold)
Who's paying you?

MAST
You are.

JAKE
That's right.

MAST
(backtracks)
As I was saying, I'll pick up the
thread. There's a number of ways I
can go. There's not much you can do
here. Stay if you want. Maybe it'd
be better if you went back home. Go
through Kristen's personal stuff.
Ask around, maybe she knew somebody
out here.
(a beat)
Look, I do this a lot. I work at a
minimum rate of $750.00 a week. It
may seem like a lot of money to you,
but it ain't. You could hire cheaper.

JAKE
And better?

MAST
I suppose. But I'll tell you, Jake,
I'm like a little animal. When I get
my teeth into something I never let
go. If your daughter's here, I'll
track her down.

CUT TO:

MONTAGE

-- Jake sits at his desk, staring into empty space.

-- Jake looks through his wife's personal effects in the
bureau. The room is unchanged.

-- Jake, his arms folded, stands outside church. A fellow
parishioner is speaking to him; Jake doesn't seem to be
listening.

Mast's VOICE comes over a long distance connection:

MAST (V.O.)
Pilgrim, this is Andy. I'm in Phoenix.
(a beat)
Yeah, it looks that way. I don't
know why. I'm going south, then maybe
fly over to Nogales.
(a beat)
I think so.
(a beat)
Yeah, I picked up your check at
Western Union.

-- Jake gets out of his car and looks down the street of a
strange town. A nearby sign reads: Minneapolis National Trust.

-- Jake walks into a greasy spoon. Ahead of him, her back
turned, sits a girl who looks like Kristen. She turns as he
approaches; it is another girl, another runaway. He apologizes
and walks away.

OVER this SCENE, we HEAR Van Dorn's telephoned VOICE:

JAKE (V.O.)
No, I was up in Minneapolis. Somebody
responded to my ad. Said there was a
girl who looked like Kristen there.
But it wasn't her. The police haven't
found anything?
(a beat)
It don't look good. I don't know.
Maybe she's dead already.

CUT TO:

EXT. DE JONG HOME - DAY

Spring has returned to Grand Rapids. The maples are in bloom
and the chairs have been set out on the long porch of Wes De
Jong's house.

We HEAR Mast's telephone VOICE as Jake gets out of his car
and enters the house.

MAST (V.O.)
I took a side trip to Mexico City.
It was just a long shot, but it didn't
pay off. So I'm back in L.A.
(a beat)
Yeah, the money came on time.

CUT TO:

INT. DE JONG HOME - DAY

Jake, carrying a wrapped present, walks into the kitchen.
Anne, Joe and John, sitting around the table, greet him as
he enters. A large birthday cake sits in the center of the
table.

Jake says, "Hi, Sis," and nods to the others.

JAKE
Where's Marsha?

ANNE
(calling)
Marsha!

Marsha walks in, smiling when she sees her uncle:

MARSHA
Uncle Jake.

JAKE
(gives her present)
Happy birthday, Marsha.

CUT TO:

EXT. DE JONG FRONT PORCH - DAY

Jake and Joe sit on chairs on the porch. Wes and Willem rest
on the rickety swing. All are drinking coffee, finishing
pieces of birthday cake and enjoying a fine spring Sunday.

Harold Jay watches quietly from the railing.

JOE
(sets down plate)
Spring's early. Without a frost we'll
have a good year.

WES
Not as good as last.

JOHN
Lord's been good to us.

Across the street, two junior high boys, pushing their bikes,
follow two female classmates. The girls dressed in tight
halters and shorts try to ignore them.

JOE
Never had to make a dishonest dollar
in my life. Never cheated an employee.

WES
How could you? They're all your
relatives.

He laughs.

JOE
The Lord got his share, too.

Joe gets up to refill his coffee cup. Wes turns to Jake, who
is watching the couples across the street.

WES
How's your business, Jake?

JAKE
(absentminded)
Pretty good.

WES
You should come around more often.
You haven't been around for weeks.
Anne complains she doesn't see you
anymore.

Jake, looking away, doesn't answer. Wes contemplates something
he's been planning to say.

WES
(continuing)
You can't dwell on Kristen all the
time, Jake. Sometimes we can't
understand the Lord's ways. He is
testing you. You have to have faith.

Jake turns and looks back at Wes:

JAKE
Would you?
(a beat)
Could you?

He looks away again.

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S OFFICE - DAY

Jake is at his desk when the PHONE RINGS. He picks up the
receiver.

JAKE
Hello?

MAST (O.S.)
Mr. Van Dorn?

JAKE
Mast?

MAST (O.S.)
Yeah.

JAKE
Where are you? The connection sounds
very good.

MAST (O.S.)
I'm back in Grand Rapids.

JAKE
In G.R.? Why?

MAST (O.S.)
Can you meet me in about an hour? At
the Pantlind Hotel?

JAKE
I've got a meeting...

MAST (O.S.)
What are you paying me for?

JAKE
I'll be there.

CUT TO:

EXT. DOWNTOWN GRAND RAPIDS - DAY

Jake and Mast walk out of the Pantlind and walk up Monroe
Avenue. The heart of Grand Rapids, like that of many Mid-
western cities, is a ghost town. The major businesses have
one by one gone broke or moved out to the suburban malls,
leaving the core of the city to cut-rate stores, parking
lots and federally-subsidized government buildings.

MAST
This used to be a real city. I was
here about fifteen years ago.
Embezzlement case. It was always a
little religious for my taste, but
at least it was a city. With a
downtown and all.

JAKE
What have you found out?

MAST
I've got some news. Your daughter's
all right. At least I think she is.

JAKE
Where is she?

MAST
I don't know.

JAKE
What do you mean?

MAST
Have you ever seen any, ah,
pornographic movies, Jake?

JAKE
No.

MAST
Do you know what a "hardcore" movie
is?

JAKE
That's like a stag film.

MAST
Yeah. You ever seen any of those?

JAKE
No.

MAST
They're legal now.

JAKE
They are?

MAST
Yeah.
(a beat)
All over. Even here in Grand Rapids.

JAKE
Hmm.

MAST
There's a little stall theatre up
here.
(gestures)
It's closed now, but I'm borrowing
it for an hour. I think there's
something you'd better see.

INT. THEATRE - DAY

Jake is uncomfortably seated in the dingy thirty-seat theatre.
Mast walks back from the projection booth as the film starts.

He sits next to Van Dorn. We slowly TRACK INTO Jake's face
as the color drains from it. O.S. We HEAR groans and the
sounds of flesh on flesh.

We TRACK SLOWLY INTO the film itself:

A 16mm hardcore short on a simple, but classic theme -- rape.
Two young men force a young, unwilling girl to submit to
their desires. The girl -- Kristen -- nude, tries to get out
of a wrinkled bed but is restrained by the long arm of a
languid, long-haired nude youth. Another young man, wearing
only pink elastic shorts, steps into the frame and takes
Kristen into his arms.

The quality of the action is quite low; the young men posture
and overact in the manner of high school dramatics.
Occasionally, the action stops while the actors receive cues
from an off-screen director. Grunts and groans are dubbed
into the screen action.

Only Kristen's performance lends a note of credibility to
the proceedings. She is genuinely disoriented or frightened --
or both. She's not play acting.

For one frightening moment, Kristen, regaining full
consciousness, fights back, but the youth in pink shorts
slaps her into submission. Her eyes turn pleadingly toward
the camera.

The first youth laughs and takes Kristen into his arms. The
youth in the pink shorts kneels on the edge of the bed and
instructs Kristen to remove his shorts. As she begins to do
this, the first youth fucks her from the rear.

As the film ends, Jake sinks his head into his hands, speaking
to himself. It's almost as if we're hearing his thoughts:

JAKE
It can't be. Why me? What have I
done?

Looking up, he says softly, then louder:

JAKE
(continuing)
Turn it off.
(a beat)
Turn it off.
(a beat)
Turn it off!
(a beat)
Turn it off!

Only then does Jake realize that the film has already been
shut off and he's sitting alone in the quiet theatre.

Mast stands by the exit. Jake gets up and walks toward him.

CUT TO:

INT. LOBBY

Jake catches up with Mast in the small lobby.

JAKE
(aggressively)
Where is she?

MAST
I don't know.

JAKE
Where did you get that film?

Jake backs Mast from one side of the lobby to the other.

MAST
I bought it at a store in L.A.

JAKE
Who made it?

MAST
I don't know.

JAKE
What do you mean?

Mast calms him down.

MAST
Wait. Slow down. A film like this,
16mm, cost two three hundred dollars,
sold outright, shown in peep machines,
maybe theatres, maybe not, is almost
impossible to track. 'Nobody' makes
it; 'nobody' shows it; 'nobody' sees
it. It's like it doesn't even exist.

JAKE
What's it called?

MAST
It was called 'Slave of Love' when I
bought it. Next time it's sold, it'll
be called something else.

JAKE
But the police...

MAST
The police? They know less than you
do.

JAKE
Do you think she's safe?

MAST
Yeah. Probably.

JAKE
You like this, don't you. Showing
me... this.

MAST
I hate it. But you gotta know, buddy.
(thinks)
A lot of strange things happen in
this world. Things you don't know
about in Grand Rapids. Things you
don't want to know about. Doors that
should never be opened. I've known
more about this sort of thing than a
man should. Don't ask me why.

Jake turns away.

MAST
(continuing)
I'm going back to L.A. today. I'll
track this film down, if I can. I'll
find her. But I can't make any
promises. I don't know what she'll
be like when I find her.

Jake, pale, looks away. Mast attempts to give him a comforting
embrace. Jake pushes him away.

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

Van Dorn sleeps fitfully. Blue light falls across his
contorted body. He's dreaming again.

CUT TO:

EXT. HOLLYWOOD MOTEL - DAY

A sleazy Santa Monica Boulevard motel.

CUT TO:

INT. HOLLYWOOD MOTEL - DAY

A porn film is being shot in a tacky motel room furnished
with a pink circular water bed, a lime-brown shag rug, and
peeling red felt wallpaper. An oil painting of a seagull in
flight adds a touch of class.

The small set is crowded with technicians and onlookers. The
harried collegiate filmmakers wear scruffy jeans and T-shirts.
The onlookers, more refined, sport double knit suits.

Two girls and a middle-aged man lie on the pink satin sheets.
Beach towels protect them from the unheated water bed. One
of the girls, NIKI, has a long blonde wig and looks about
nineteen.

The makeup girl hurriedly dabs some last minute cosmetic on
the second girl's breast. A young man in a UCLA T-shirt pastes
up the peeling wallpaper above the bed.

Random VOICES ECHO around the set. The DIRECTOR, a student
filmmaker, tries to bring the set to order.

BILL RAMADA, 40, the Producer, watches silently from the
b.g. He's in charge here. He wears gabardine slacks and a
Gucci shirt.

His Assistant, KURT, 25, stands by his side.

RAMADA
(clapping hands)
All right, kids, let's get back to
it.

DIRECTOR
Actors, to your positions, please.

Niki, the SECOND GIRL and the Actor remove their towels and
form a contorted triangular position.

NIKI
Can't you get this bed any warmer?

CAMERAMAN
Bring another light over here.

NIKI
My ass is freezing.

ACTOR
Your ass is always freezing.

NIKI
Up yours.

The Second Girl coaxes her male partner into tumescence.

SECOND GIRL
He's got it up.

NIKI
Thank God.

DIRECTOR
Action. Rolling.

CAMERAMAN
The wallpaper's peeling again.

DIRECTOR
Forget it. Keep shooting.

Crouching, the Director approaches his actors.

DIRECTOR
(continuing)
All right, Niki, you come around
this way and swing your legs around
his back.

The Director pleads with outstretched hands. His acting
workshop courses have not been in vain. Lowering his voice,
he coaxes Niki into the proper mood:

DIRECTOR
(continuing)
All right, Niki, you're lying back
now, yes, just taking it easy, just
enjoying your body, yes, you're
thinking about your father, your
mind is open and free...

Mast walks into the rear of the room and looks around until
he spots Ramada.

DIRECTOR
(continuing)
Okay, now Bennie, you turn over and
lick her belly...

Ramada recognizes Mast as he walks toward him and motions
for him to follow.

They step into an adjoining room. The Director's instructions
drone in the distance.

RAMADA
(friendly)
Hey, piss-head, what brings you
around?

MAST
You don't have to get uppity with
me, Bill. I remember when you was
running that car wash and couldn't
make it go. And what was that other
thing you tried? A Dairy Queen? Went
busted too.

RAMADA
At least I improved myself. What's
up?

Mast takes out a snapshot of Kristen. In the background the
Director yells, "Cut."

MAST
I want you to take a look at this
girl here. She's been in some porn
stuff.

RAMADA
(looks at photo)
No, Andy. Don't know the kid.

MAST
Look again, Billy-boy. This is jail
bait. Could get you in a lotta
trouble.

RAMADA
(shakes head)
Nope never saw her before.
(calls to assistant)
Kurt, come over here. Don't use
underage kids. Wouldn't touch 'em
for all the cow shit in Mexico.
(as Kurt steps over)
You recognize this piece of wool,
Kurt?

KURT
(shakes head)
No.

RAMADA
Sorry couldn't help you, Andy.
(to Kurt)
How'd the shot go? They about ready
to start again?
(to Mast)
You can come watch if you want, Andy.
Just don't hassle anybody.

Mast shrugs, tucks the photo in his pocket and follows Ramada
and Kurt back onto the set.

CUT TO:

EXT. FACTORY - DAY

Jake leaves the factory in the middle of the afternoon, gets
in his car and drives off.

CUT TO:

INT. BEDROOM - DAY

Jake walks into his bedroom, pulls a suitcase out of the
closet and throws it on the bed.

He is motivated now. A decision has been made.

He throws in his shirts and socks. A travel clock. Pictures
of Kristen.

CUT TO:

INT. DINING ROOM - DAY

Jake is on the phone. His voice is hard and determined.

JAKE
This is Jake. I'm going out of town
for a while.
(a beat)
No, I don't know when I'll be back.
No, there's nothing wrong. Can you
keep things running?
(a beat)
Don't ask.

CUT TO:

EXT. L.A. INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT - NIGHT

United jet lands.

CUT TO:

EXT. HOLIDAY INN - DAY

Van Dorn, dressed and ready to go, walks out of the Hollywood
Holiday Inn and over to the parking lot.

Checking a city map one final time, he gets into his late
model rented green Pontiac and drives off.

CUT TO:

INT. CAR - DAY

Jake seems a new man; he's in charge now. To a man like Jake
Van Dorn, a man from the Midwest, a self-made man, all is
possible once you're in control. There are no ambiguities,
no conundrums, no labyrinths; only problems. And problems,
once understood, lead only to solutions.

All one needs is the will and the intellect to pursue those
solutions.

Jake looks at the note pad on the seat. It reads:

Andy Mast
Apt. #3-A
14316 Chandler Blvd.,
Van Nuys, Calif.
(213) 474-8759

He drives up Highland, past the freeway and over the hills.

CUT TO:

EXT. MAST'S APARTMENT - DAY

Van Dorn parks in front of the Elite V Apartments.

Jake stops in front of the room, re-checks the number, and
knocks.

There's no immediate answer. Hearing some commotion in the
room, Jake stops, listens. He peeks through the partially-
curtained window.

Inside, he sees Mast banging away with a TEENAGE GIRL on the
sofa.

Jake is curious, then outraged. He tries the door. It opens.

Inside, Mast and his teenage companion scramble for their
clothes. The girl calls out.

TEENAGE GIRL (O.S.)
It's the cops, man.

MAST (O.S.)
Fuck.

INT. MAST'S APARTMENT - DAY

Jake strides into Mast's apartment.

Mast, his belt unbuckled, puts on his shirt. The Teenage
Girl, pulling a Grateful Dead T-shirt over her head, looks
at Jake and says:

TEENAGE GIRL
Who the fuck is this?

Not pausing to speak, Jake pushes Mast against the sofa.
Reaching down, he pulls the detective up by the collar.

JAKE
What are you doing? You son-of-a-
bitch! I've been paying you every
week for three months and you've
been out here...

TEENAGE GIRL
I'm splitting.

Jake turns as the girl vanishes.

MAST
I ain't cheated you, Pilgrim. This
is research, damn it! That girl could
have told us something.

JAKE
Research, my ass. I suppose these
are the 'extra expenses' I've been
paying for? And in the middle of the
morning, too.

Mast pulls himself away.

MAST
Oh, fuck off. You should stay where
you belong.

JAKE
Get out. Get out of here, Goddammit.

Mast picks up his shoes and says half-apologetically:

MAST
I'm only human, you know.

JAKE
Get out.

MAST
But this is my apartment.

JAKE
Get out!

Mast shrugs. There's no reasoning with Van Dorn. He pauses
at the door and looks back.

MAST
You prick. You ass-hole prick. You
can find your own Goddamn daughter
now.
(stops; looks at door)
I'm not even smart enough to lock my
own fucking door.

Mast closes the door behind him. Van Dorn looks around the
apartment. It's calm now.

On the desk are Mast's briefcase and papers.

Looking through Mast's files, Jake finds pages and pages of
notes and information about his daughter's disappearance.
Names, places, dates. Lists of massage parlors, sex shops,
porn bookshops. The names of owners, managers, filmmakers,
Interviews with street girls, cops, landlords.

Plus snapshots of Kristen as she once was and 8x10 frame
enlargements from "Slave of Love," her hardcore film.

CUT TO:

INT. HOLIDAY INN ROOM - DAY

Jake has spread Mast's papers and photographs across the
floor of his Holiday Inn motel room.

His collar open, his tie loosened, Van Dorn squats over the
notes and interviews. He studies his find. It includes:

-- sex ads from various local papers. Some are crossed out,
others circled, others checked.

-- a list of massage parlors and sex shops under the heading
"possible K was here."

-- An L.A. Times newspaper clipping about "Bill Ramada, L.A.
Porn Movie Mogul." It features a photo of Ramada on his way
out of court.

-- a sleazy porn mag article about "Parlor Girls: Hustling
and Loving."

CUT TO:

EXT. LOS ANGELES - NIGHT

Van Dorn drives through the crowded streets of Los Angeles'
tenderloin. He cruises down Santa Monica, up Western, along
Hollywood and back down to Santa Monica.

He passes row upon row of garish adult bookstores, massage
parlors and porn theatres. He passes model shops, topless
bars, "erotic motels," and peep shows.

Teenage girls stand in the red neon shadows, calling out to
passing strangers. Drag queens and leather boys cruise the
sidewalks. Jet black pimps, sporting high heels and make
coats, stroll from one massage parlor to another. The sound
of Latin jazz comes from one doorway; soul disco from another.
L.A.P.D. black and whites patrol the streets. Occasionally,
a uniformed officer leans out to hassle a passing pimp or
hooker.

He drives on. The sex shops have names like "The Sexual
Catharthis Center," "Pandora's Box," "The Institute of Oral
Love," "69 Club," "The Church of Spiritual Sexuality," "The
Participating Center of Sexual Experience," "Mother's Fun
Palace," "The Hot Box."

A zoo of lusts.

Jake looks at the seat beside him, checking Mast's list of
massage parlors and sex stores with the notation, "possible
K was here."

CUT TO:

EXT. ADONIS BOOKSHOP - NIGHT

Van Dorn pulls to the curb and parks his car. Ahead is the
plexiglass lettered sign of the Adonis bookstore.

Jake locks his car, buttons his suit coat and walks toward
the bookstore. He hesitates a moment, then enters.

CUT TO:

INT. ADONIS BOOKSHOP - NIGHT

Jake steps into the bookstore and looks cautiously from side
to side.

His expression is stern, withdrawn, as if suppressing some
physical pain. He finds nothing titillating about this world;
for him it is simply evil. Neither is he shocked. Has he not
been taught: "For every imagination of man's heart is only
evil continually"?

An improbable assortment of men peruse the long racks of
pornographic books and magazines. A young MALE TELLER sits
next to a cash register atop a high counter. Below him, a
display case features sexual paraphernalia and films. A small
radio softly plays Muzak.

TELLER
Fifty cents admission.

JAKE
What?

TELLER
It's fifty cents admission. It's
applicable to a purchase.

Jake fishes in his pocket, comes up with a couple quarters
and places them on the counter. The Teller gives him a token
in return.

Van Dorn walks down one row and up another. The explicit
titles and magazine covers leap out at him: "Cropped
Crotches," "Teenage Obedience Lesson," "Mouthful of Cock,"
"Hogtie." Many of the magazine covers feature obviously
underage girls. He eases his way past a butch young man
looking at magazines in the gay section.

Screwing up his courage, Jake steps back to the counter.

He tries but cannot avert his eyes from the grotesque sexual
novelties in the case. Dildos, some small, some huge and
gross, looking more like instruments of torture than pleasure.
Stimulators, vibrators, spiked ticklers. Penis enlargers.
Leather paddles, whips, masks, rubber vaginas, fuck faces,
masturbators.

JAKE
Do you have a, ah, film called 'Slave
of Love?'

TELLER
What we got is just these here.
(gestures)
What you see.

JAKE
It's a short film.

TELLER
They're all about the same. You want
something?

Jake looks momentarily at the boxes of 16mm film. A couple
titles read "Office Party," and "Butt Banger."

JAKE
Well...

Van Dorn pulls a folded 8x10 out of his vest pocket. It's a
glossy frame enlargement from "Slave of Love" folded to reveal
only Kristen.

JAKE
This is from the movie I was talking
about.

TELLER
I don't know what you're talking
about.

JAKE
I wondered if you had ever seen this
film or this woman...
(points)
...right here.

TELLER
That girl? No, never saw her. I don't
know anybody.

JAKE
I'm just trying to find...
(getting testy)
Who owns this store?

TELLER
I don't know. Look, man, if you're
looking for somebody maybe you ought
to see the cops.

JAKE
But I...

TELLER
I don't know nothing, man.

Jake, realizing he's getting nowhere, pockets his photograph
and turns to leave.

TELLER
(continuing)
You don't want anything for your
fifty cents?

JAKE
No.

The Teller places two quarters on the counter.

TELLER
Here. Take your fifty cents back.

JAKE
That's all right.

TELLER
No, take it. I don't want your Goddamn
fifty cents.

Jake places the token on the counter, takes his quarters and
walks back out into the neon night. The Teller turns to no
one in particular and says:

TELLER
(continuing)
It's one of those Legion of Decency
guys.

CUT TO:

EXT. WILD MARY'S - NIGHT

Van Dorn walks west on Santa Monica Boulevard. The entrance
to Wild Mary's is formed by the larger-than-life painted
rear view of a bent over woman. Her long legs flank either
side of the open passageway.

A young man in a cowboy shirt repeats monotoned litany to
passersby:

CALIFORNIA COWBOY
Free information. Free information
inside. Come in and get free
information. Free information. Free
information inside.

Jake pauses in front of the California Cowboy, then enters,
passing through Wild Mary's muscled thighs.

CUT TO:

INT. WILD MARY'S - NIGHT

Jake walks into Wild Mary's and is greeted by a young woman
in a shift and bikini pants. Her name is BEATRICE.

BEATRICE
Hello. My name is Beatrice. Have you
been here before?

JAKE
No.

BEATRICE
What we offer here is nude body to
body contact on a bed in a private
room. It's twenty dollars a half
hour, thirty dollars an hour. Anything
else you desire may be discussed in
the privacy of your room. Tips are
allowed. We accept Bank Americard,
Master Charge and American Express.

JAKE
I don't really want... 'body to body
contact.'

BEATRICE
That you may discuss with the girl
of your choice in the privacy of
your room.

A SECOND TEENAGE HOSTESS steps through a beaded curtain and
joins Beatrice and Jake.

SECOND HOSTESS
Hi.

JAKE
I'm looking for a girl. Have you
ever been in a porno film?

Jake reaches for this folded photo but the Second Hostess
takes him by the hand.

SECOND HOSTESS
Come back with me. I'm sure you'll
find what you want.

A THIN MAN walks into the room. He looks about 35 and carries
a small bag.

THIN MAN
I called on the phone. You have a
Domination Room?

BEATRICE
Yeah. Did you bring your own
domination equipment?

THIN MAN
Yes, but I've never been here before.

BEATRICE
I'm sure everything will be just the
way you want it. Twenty dollars half
hour, thirty dollars hour. Tips are
allowed.

THIN MAN
Let's start with a half hour.

The Thin Man gives Beatrice a twenty and walks off with her.
Jake, curious, follows.

Beatrice and the Thin Man step into the Domination Room: a
simulation of a Medieval dungeon. A large wood X-shaped cross
is bolted to one wall. There are straps for the client's
hands and feet. Instruments of torture hang from another
wall. A bare-breasted girl, wearing bikini pants and leather
chaps, sits lethargically on a folding chair. A mask of black
leather and buckles completely cover her face.

Beatrice notices Jake is following them.

BEATRICE
You want to take a session?

Jake is dazed by what he sees. He wasn't even aware such
perversions existed.

JAKE
No. I don't think so.

BEATRICE
You sure? We have regular sessions,
too. Only twenty dollars?

Jake turns and (like Lot from Sodom) walks away without
looking back. As he leaves, he passes the Second Hostess
attempting to communicate with two teenage MEXICANS.

TEENAGE MEXICAN
Sexo?

The Second Hostess forms an oval with the index finger and
thumb of her left hand and passes the index finger of her
other hand through it in an obvious gesture:

SECOND HOSTESS
Si. Sexo. Sexo.

EXT. STAIRWAY TO LOVE - NIGHT

Later that night. Jake locks his car and walks south on
Western toward Santa Monica Boulevard. Ahead, a continuous
row of massage parlors blend into neon.

Girls call out as he walks: "Come on in and get free
information," and "Want to have a good time?" and "Lonely?"

He stops by the Stairway to Love. Three girls stand just
inside the door. A sign in the window reads: "Come in --
Satisfaction Here." He enters.

CUT TO:

INT. STAIRWAY TO LOVE - NIGHT

The First Hostess, FELICE, greets Jake as he enters:

FELICE
Hi, you been here before?

The two other Hostesses gather round.

JAKE
No.

FELICE
We offer Female Wrestling, that is,
nude body to body contact, with a
girl of your choice in a private
room. Twenty dollars a half hour,
thirty dollars hour. Any other
arrangements may be discussed in the
privacy of your room. Tipping is
permitted. We accept Bank Americard,
Master Charge and American Express.

JAKE
Yeah.

FELICE
Do you want to take a session?

JAKE
I just want to ask some questions.

FELICE
You may do that in the privacy of
your room.

JAKE
Okay. I'll take a half hour.

FELICE
Do you have any particular choice of
girl?

JAKE
You'll be fine.

Jake gives Felice a couple tens. She in turn passes them to
the MANAGER, a 225 pound, blond-haired Malibu surfer. He
puts the money in a cash box and fills out a time sheet.

Jake eyes the Manager uneasily as Felice escorts him up the
"Stairway to Love."

CUT TO:

INT. ROOMS - NIGHT

Felice shows Jake into a ten-by-ten cubicle. The walls are
barren; a bed-sized slab of foam rubber lies on the floor.

FELICE
Wait a second. I've got to get a
sheet.

He looks around the small room. Through the makeshift
pasteboard walls he can hear the SOUNDS OF OTHER COUPLES
"making love."

Felice quickly returns with a sheet and spreads it across
the foam. She slides the door shut behind her.

FELICE
You're still dressed?

JAKE
Well, I want to...

FELICE
(sitting)
Sit down. Make yourself comfortable.
My name's Felice.

Jake squats down on the foam, crossing his legs under him.

JAKE
There's a girl I want to ask you
about.

FELICE
You're not Vice, are you?
(rote)
Do you work for the Los Angeles Police
Department, or do you have any other
affiliation with any law enforcement
agency?

JAKE
No, I don't.

FELICE
I have to ask you that. If you were
Vice you couldn't deny it. You ought
to dress less square. You wouldn't
get hassled so much. Here, let me
help you get that tie off.

Felice reaches over to loosen his tie. Jake, self-conscious,
removes his tie.

JAKE
Well, actually I wanted to ask about
this girl. I have her picture here.

FELICE
Pull out your cock.

JAKE
What?

FELICE
Cops aren't allowed to do that either.
A judge ruled that that was
entrapment. Don't ask me why. I guess
he figured the sight of a Vice
Officer's dong would make a girl
unable to stop herself.

She laughs.

JAKE
No, Felice, I'm not a cop. In fact,
right now I've got as little respect
for the police as you do.
(pulls out folded
glossy)
I'm looking for a girl. A runaway. I
need someone to help me.

FELICE
Are you going to stiff me?

JAKE
What do you mean?

FELICE
Look, that twenty dollars you just
paid, I don't get any of that. That
goes to the guys that own this place.
I get two bucks an hour, minus ten
percent for a bail fund. I make all
my money on tips.

JAKE
You want a tip?

FELICE
Sure. What do you want? Tips can be
anywhere from thirty dollars to
seventy dollars.

JAKE
What do you mean?

FELICE
What do you want to tip me for? Look,
you got to spell it out. Whatever
you want, just say it.

JAKE
I'll give you a tip. Here's forty
dollars.

Jake digs out a couple twenties and gives them to her. Felice
tucks the bills into her bikini crotch and pulls off her
shirt top. Her breasts seem surprisingly pale and small.

FELICE
Now, what do you want?

JAKE
I said I just wanted to talk to you...

FELICE
That's cool.

JAKE
...about this woman.
(showing glossy)
I'm trying to find her. Do you know
her?

FELICE
(uptight)
Look, I don't know anybody. I never
seen her before.

Jake, previously upset, is now angered. Nobody tells him
anything, he gets nowhere.

JAKE
I'm getting angry.

FELICE
Wait a minute, that's going to cost
you more than forty bucks.

JAKE
I'm getting angry. I want some
answers.
(stands)
Where's the guy who runs this place?

He slides open the door and walks out. Felice pulls on her
shift and follows him.

JAKE
Who is it? That blond guy? Where is
he? I'm going to talk to someone.

FELICE
Wait?

JAKE
Where is he? Where's the bastard
that runs this shit hole?

The Manager, as if on request, steps to the top of the stairs.
His huge frame fills the hallway.

MANAGER
What do you want?

FELICE
He's causing trouble.

JAKE
(contentious)
I got a picture here. I want you to
tell me where to find this woman. I
been asking everybody. Nobody knows
anything.

MANAGER
Calm down, mister. You don't want to
get the cops in here do you? You got
a family?

JAKE
(shows picture)
I don't suppose you've ever seen
this girl before either? Her name's
Kristen, but I suppose you've never
seen her?

MANAGER
Why don't you just go outdoors,
mister? Cool off.

JAKE
Cool off, huh? How's this for cooling
off?

He knocks a cheap print of a naked woman off the wall. The
frame crashes to the floor.

MANAGER
Hold it, mister.

JAKE
What do you think of that? Or this?

Jake knocks over a small table. The Manager has had enough.
He grabs Jake's arm, wrenches it tight behind his back and
rams Jake's face into the wall. He forces Jake down the
stairway of love.

Jake struggles and kicks, but is no match for the larger
man. At the foot of the stairs, the Manager ejects Jake,
thrusting him across the sidewalk.

Jake rams face-first into a parked car. He staggers on the
sidewalk. His mouth and nose bloody.

He looks back. A black and white slows down. There's nothing
to be done. He moves on.

CUT TO:

INT. HOLIDAY INN ROOM - DAY

Van Dorn, thinking, lies face up on the bed in his motel
room. He wears slacks and a white undershirt.

His face is bruised, his lip is swollen. An open First Aid
Kit sits on the lamp stand.

LATER. Jake slouches in a chair watching "Day of Discovery,"
a Sunday evening religious program. The chorus of wholesome
young people look like they've come from another planet.

A soothing, innocuous hymn. In the distance church bells
RING, as if signalling a call to action.

CUT TO:

EXT. BEVERLY HILLS - DAY

The next day. Jake, now wearing a print sport shirt under
his navy jacket, strides down Camden. He has a plan.

He checks an office building address and enters.

CUT TO:

INT. OUTER OFFICE - DAY

Jake stands as a SECRETARY says to him:

SECRETARY
Mr. Ramada can see you now.

He thanks her and walks into Ramada's office.

CUT TO:

INT. RAMADA'S OFFICE - DAY

Bill Ramada stands to greet Jake as he enters. His office is
expensively decorated in chrome and glass. A framed poster
from the New York Film Festival hangs on one wall.

Kurt sits on a plush white sofa.

RAMADA
Hello, Mr. Holcum. You look out of
breath. What's the matter? The
elevator broke?
(to Kurt)
Is the elevator broke?

Kurt shrugs.

JAKE
No. I walked up. Don't ride elevators.

RAMADA
My secretary said you wanted to
discuss a business proposition.

JAKE
Yes.
(as Ramada sits)
I'm interested in financing an adult
feature film. I was told you were
the man to come to.

RAMADA
Film making can be pretty expensive...

Jake has slipped into his business shoes. He's cool,
confident.

JAKE
I've got fifty thousand dollars to
invest.

RAMADA
Oh.
(a beat)
Why is it that you want to get into
film financing?

JAKE
Well, Bill -- mind if I call you
Bill?
(as Ramada nods)
Let me be frank. I've made a lot of
money. I've got my own business in
Detroit. Rivets. I make rivets and
sell them to Fisher Body.
(a beat)
Well, rivets, you know, can get pretty
boring after a while. When my business
manager told me I should shelter
some money, I thought I'd try this.

RAMADA
What exactly do you have in mind?

JAKE
I thought I'd invest in a film. I
want to sort of become involved in
the process of making a film, meet
the people who make films, learn how
it's done...

RAMADA
In other words, you want to get laid?

JAKE
Not exactly...

RAMADA
It's cool. Why do you think I got in
the movies? How much poon do you
think you get in the car wash
business?
(a beat)
Look, fifty thousand dollars buys a
lot of pussy. You can get your joint
pulled by beautiful girls every night
for the rest of your life for fifty
thousand dollars. So why fuck with
the movie business?

JAKE
(smiles knowingly)
It's an investment.

RAMADA
If you want to watch when we shoot a
film, for fifty bucks, I let guys
stand around and watch. It's a lot
cheaper.

JAKE
I thought you were a businessman.

RAMADA
Don't get me wrong. A couple years
ago, I woulda jumped at fifty thousand
dollars possible financing. But the
Lord's been good to me. I can now
finance any films I choose. Big ones,
small ones. Right now we're setting
up a two hundred thousand dollar
feature film. Live sound. I like to
keep my own money in my films. That
way you don't have to share the
profits. There's plenty of guys in
town that'll take it, though. But if
I was you, Mr... what was your name
again?

JAKE
Jake.

RAMADA
...I'd just start my own business.
That's what I did. Get into kid porn.
That's big now. Why don't you come
around the set? Meet some people. If
you still want to invest, I'll ask
around.

JAKE
Sounds all right.

RAMADA
Okay. Keep in touch with my secretary.

Jake nods and turns to exit.

RAMADA
So long, Mr. Jake.

CUT TO:

INT. L.A. FREE PRESS

The next day, Van Dorn waits in line to place a "Personals"
ad in the Los Angeles Free Press.

He wears an open sport shirt, slacks and loafers. Bit by bit
he's been going native. He realizes he isn't going to
infiltrate the pornography underworld looking like a furniture
dealer from Grand Rapids.

Even so, Jake's conventional dress sets him apart from his
fellow advertisers. The long line winds back and forth and
represents just about every possible deviation from the
American heterosexual norm: studs, butches, hookers, freaks,
cultists: misfits all.

The CAMERA studies the line: an attractive boy wears a studded
collar, a low-rider sports his colors, a diminutive girl
waits silently in her hari-krishna robe.

The line inches forward. Behind Jake, one woman tells another
about this great swinging party. Van Dorn takes some comfort
in the fact that the MAN in front of him, dressed in a
seersucker suit, looks pretty straight.

The GIRL AT THE WINDOW takes his ad:

MAN IN SEERSUCKER SUIT
(reading ad)
'W/M, 35, 140 fastest tongue in west,
will demonstrate proficiency in all
dialects to females under 50. Looks
not imp.' That's all in caps, 'LOOKS
NOT IMP.' 'George Harper. P.O. Box
102, Alhambra, Ca., 91801.'

GIRL AT THE WINDOW
That's 'dial-a' what?

MAN IN SEERSUCKER SUIT
Di-a-lects. D-I-A-L-E-C-T-S. Like
talking.

The Man in the Seersucker Suit pays his fee and Jake steps
up to the window.

JAKE
I'd like to place a 'Personals' ad
in the Free Press.

GIRL AT THE WINDOW
How many weeks?

JAKE
Just one.

GIRL AT THE WINDOW
The rate is a dollar per line, a
dollar and a half bold face.

Jake takes out a slip of paper and hands it to the Girl.

JAKE
I have it here. Can you take this
down?

The Girl takes the slip of paper and reads it back to him as
she fills in the advertising form:

GIRL AT THE WINDOW
'Film Producer' -- that should be in
caps, bold face.

JAKE
Okay.

GIRL AT THE WINDOW
'Film Producer seeks young men, 18
to 25, for hardcore film. Prior film
experience a must. Call Jake at
Players Motel. 777 Vine. 463-5671.

Jake nods.

CUT TO:

EXT. DARK ROAD - NIGHT

A small film crew sets up a shot. Ramada, Kurt, Van Dorn and
others, standing by a trailer, watch from the b.g. Jake's
floral rayon shirt is open to the third button.

The script evidently calls for "Dark Road -- Night" because
that's where the gaffer is arranging lights around a parked
red Mustang. A YOUNG ACTOR in a soldier's uniform waits in
the car. Niki and another actress, dressed as a stewardess,
stand on their marks near the front of the car.

Ramada and Kurt walk over to talk to the YOUNG DIRECTOR.
Niki, finished for the moment, walks back toward the trailer.

Niki picks a heavy coat out of the trailer, and wrapping it
around her, stands next to Jake. They watch as Ramada gives
the Director some last minute advice.

JAKE
Are you the star of this picture?

NIKI
You kidding? Three days work. I finish
tonight.

JAKE
The other girl is the star?

NIKI
She thinks so.
(a beat)
What do you do?

JAKE
I work with Ramada. We're doing some
pictures together.

NIKI
Well, next time you talk to him,
tell him to pay his actresses more.

DIRECTOR
(calling)
All right, girls, Niki! To your
places.

NIKI
(to Jake)
Nice meeting you.

Niki throws off her coat and runs to the set. The Actor backs
the Mustang out of CAMERA range.

There is a pause, the Director calls: "ACTION!" and the
Mustang drives to where the two stewardesses, stranded, are
waving for help. The cameraman pans with the Mustang. The
Soldier opens his door, looks at the girls' car and offers
to help.

Kurt steps over to Jake.

The Soldier, looking at the stranded stewardesses, rubs his
inner thigh.

KURT
(to Jake)
We'll come in for a closeup here.

Niki unfastens the Soldier's belt and pulls down his zipper.
The Soldier leans against the car as Niki sinks to her knees
and opens his trousers.

CUT TO:

EXT. PLAYERS MOTEL - NIGHT

The Players Motel is a "specialty motel." It offers "X-rated
movies, Closed Circuit Color TV, Water Beds." Rates are $10
a night, or $8 for two hours.

Most clients prefer the two hour rate.

Van Dorn pulls his rented Pontiac into the lot and parks in
the first available space.

Weary, he gets out of the car and heads for his room. He
passes a colored whore with a towering synthetic wig.

Further down the line of rooms, Wes De Jong sits slouched in
the front seat of his rental car, watching, waiting.

A prostitute wearing jeans and a shoulder bag, enters a
lighted room with her trick, a construction worker. He
unbuttons his shirt as she closes the curtains.

Wes sits up when he sees his brother-in-law shuffle past the
rooms, take out his key and open a door.

CUT TO:

INT. PLAYERS MOTEL - NIGHT

Jake, not bothering to fully shut the door, steps into the
room, throws his key on the bed and plops down beside it.
He's emotionally and physically exhausted.

The decor is Vegas sleaze: tinted mirrors, red shag carpets,
felt wallpaper, pseudo-Louis Seize chairs and a plexiglass
chandelier. The large room has, at one end, a sitting area
with a sofa and chairs, and at the other, a water bed covered
with a black satin sheet. A large ceiling mirror is bolted
above the bed.

Jake, hearing a NOISE, looks up.

Wes, wearing a suit and tie, steps tentatively in. He surveys
the tawdry room. Jake just looks away.

WES
What's going on, Jake?

Jake says nothing for the moment.

WES
(continuing)
Jake?

JAKE
How did you find me?

WES
I called every L.A. hotel. The Holiday
Inn gave this as a referral number.
Your office said you had no business
in New York, so I figured you had
come out here.
(looks around)
What's happening, Jake? What are you
doing? Nobody's heard from you. Anne's
worried sick. We didn't know if you
were dead or alive.

Jake stands and steps over to Wes:

JAKE
Wes, do me a favor.

WES
What?

JAKE
Leave me alone. Go home. Go away.

Wes starts to protest.

JAKE
(continuing)
Just do what I say. Don't ask.

WES
(insistent)
What is going on?

JAKE
I think I've found a way to find
Kristen. I have a plan. But I have
to be alone.

WES
What plan?

JAKE
You don't want to know.
(a beat; softer)
Now, Wes, leave, please. For me.

WES
What will I tell the others? They
care about you.

JAKE
Tell them anything you want. Tell
them I'm on a vacation, a business
trip. Tell them I needed a rest.
Tell them anything, just don't tell
them...

Jake looks about the whorey room. His voice cracks a little.

JAKE
(continuing)
...just don't tell them about this.
(A beat)
Now go.

Jake escorts his brother-in-law to the door. Wes turns and
embraces him. Jake breaks the embrace and firmly pushes Wes
out of the room.

Jake closes and chains the door.

CUT TO:

INT. PLAYERS MOTEL - DAY

The next morning. Jake has rearranged the furniture so that
the sofa directly faces the door. Van Dorn, wearing a blue
tie-dyed shirt with a sunburst on the front, sits in the
middle of the sofa. On either side of the sofa tall thin
lamps stand on end tables. A telephone, legal pad and travel
clock have been placed on the coffee table. Beside Jake rests
Mast's sheaf of notes and pictures. Behind him hangs an
iridescent poster featuring the sex signs of the zodiac.

He waits. There is a knock at the door.

JAKE
Come in.

A handsome STUD, about 22, wearing tight jeans, steps
cautiously into the room.

STUD #1
Jake? Mr. Holcum?

Jake checks the appointment schedule on his legal pad:

JAKE
Pete? Come in.

STUD #1
(enters)
Yeah. Peter Long. That's the name I
use.

JAKE
We're casting male roles in an
explicit sex action feature. The pay
is $100 a day. There'll be up to two
weeks work. You say you've had
experience?

STUD #1
I was in the Mitchell Brothers' film,
'Sodom and Gomorrah.' I don't know
if you saw that. I played Damon, the
slave of the Queen of Gomorrah.

Van Dorn's pretty good at this. He's given many job interviews
before. The phone rings and he answers.

JAKE
Yes, this is Jake.
(a beat)
We're casting right now. Have you
had experience in hardcore films?
(a beat)
I can fit you in from 4:00 - 4:15
today.
(a beat)
At the Players Motel, 777 Vine, Room
106.
(a beat)
We'll see you then.

Van Dorn hangs up and looks through his sheaf of papers.
Pulling back a page of notes, he reveals the unfolded 8x10
glossy from "Slave of Love." He looks at the two young men
violating his daughter, then back up at Peter Long. Long is
neither of the men.

JAKE
(continuing)
All right, Pete. I have your exchange
here. If we decide to use you, we'll
give you a call.

Long turns and exits. Jake checks his appointment schedule
then puts his hand to his temples. He has become the thing
he hates most: the procurer. Self-contempt fills his face.

TIMECUT: The next interviewee stands in front of Van Dorn.
He's a tall black man about 25. An ex-athlete.

JAKE
You're not exactly the type we're
looking for.

BLACK STUD
(hostile)
You mean I'm black?

JAKE
No, just not the type.

BLACK STUD
What do you mean, not the type? Don't
you know who I am? I'm Big Dick Brown!
I've been in more porno movies than
you ever saw. I've worked with Harry
Reems. I've worked with Johnny Wad.
Not the type! I can come ten times a
day. I can keep it hard two hours at
a time. My cock is nine inches long.

JAKE
I'm sorry, Mr. Brown. I'm sure you're
very good, but at the moment, I've
got nothing for you. If something
comes up, we'll give you a call.

BLACK STUD
Shit! You just don't want to hire a
nigger, that's all. I knew this was
a scam. I shouldn'ta come.

The Black Stud turns and storms out.

TIMECUT: An angelic, muscular boy about 19 stands in front
of Van Dorn. Jake looks weary.

JAKE
(tired)
I'm sorry, but you're just not the
type we are looking for. We had
something else in mind.

STUD #2
Don't you want to see my stuff, man?

JAKE
What stuff?

STUD #2
(pointing to crotch)
You know, my stuff!

Jake nods with resignation.

The boy drops his jeans. Framed by firm, smooth, naked thighs,
Van Dorn looks at the angelic boy's "stuff." He nods.

TIMECUT: It's the end of the day. The last orange rays of
sun come through the window.

Jake, weary, looks up. A young man steps in from the fading
sunlight.

The young man looks about 21. His sun-bleached hair falls
just to his shoulders. A hippie who's hit the streets.

Jake looks at his 8x10 glossy, then back at the young man.
This is him. This is the young man in the pink bikini shorts.

This is the YOUTH from Kristen's hardcore movie, the one who
slapped her, the one who forced her face into his crotch.

JISM JIM
Hey man.

JAKE
We're casting for an explicit sex
action feature...

JISM JIM
(initially hostile)
I know. Word's out on the street --
word's also out you ain't really
hiring anyone.

JAKE
That's not true, Mr...?

JISM JIM
Jim Sullivan. Sometimes they call me
Jism Jim.

JAKE
That's not true, Jim. In fact, I
think you're very close to the type
we're looking for.

Jim immediately becomes more compliant.

JISM JIM
Oh yeah? I've done a lot of good
stuff. Shorts, features. No major
roles it's true. But good stuff.

JAKE
That's what I wanted to talk to you
about.

Jake reaches over and picks up the glossy.

JAKE
I've seen you in some stuff. I like
your looks. I particularly liked you
in this film.

Jake shows him the glossy.

JISM JIM
Oh yeah? I remember that. It was
made by some college kids.

JAKE
It was called 'Slave of Love.'

JISM JIM
God, I don't know what it was called.
I never saw it. I only got twenty-
five bucks for the whole Goddamned
thing.

JAKE
I thought you were quite good in it.
I also like the girl in it. Really
thought she was good.
(points out Kristen)
I wondered if she was still around.
If she was still working.

Jim examines Kristen's picture. His expression sours.

JISM JIM
Wait.
(a beat)
Wait a minute. Look, I need the work
and I want to be in your picture,
but that is one bitch I will never
work with again.

Jim, nervous, paces around. He tries to explain.

JISM JIM
(continuing)
Look, that was one freaky bitch, one
very, very freaky bitch. I don't
know what she was into, I don't know
what she was on, but I don't want to
have anything to do with her again.

Jake's face grows cold and mean as he listens to Jim's
description of his daughter's defilement.

JISM JIM
(cups genitals with
right hand)
Do you know what she did to me? Do
you know what she did to me, man?
That fucking cunt! I couldn't walk
for a week. My prick was sore and
red and chewed out. She was cra-zy.
I don't want to work with her again.

All the while Jim speaks, Van Dorn's long arm reaches slowly
for the lamp on his right.

His right hand locks around the base of the lamp. Still
listening, watching Jim intensely, Jake grips the balls of
his feet into the carpet.

Jake is beyond logic, beyond restraint.

He rises, lamp in hand. The cord pops out of the wall; the
bulb flashes out.

Reaching across the table, Van Dorn smashes the youth across
the face. The plaster lamp shatters; the shade flies off.
Jim reels backward.

Knocking over the coffee table, Van Dorn advances on the
dazed, bleeding youth.

Van Dorn pounds him again with the plaster stump of the lamp.

Van Dorn stops. He looks down at Jism Jim. The youth is barely
conscious.

Realizing what he's done, Jake pulls Jim up by his collar
and drags him into the bathroom.

He hauls the youth into the large "erotic" shower. He pulls
the shower douche off the wall, and sprays Jim's face.

The battered youth opens his eyes. He's terrified. He's been
in kinky scenes before. He pleads:

JISM JIM
Hey, stop, stop. I'll do anything
you want. It's okay. I can dig it.
You can do anything you want to me.

JAKE
(full of rage)
Where is she? Where is the girl?

JISM JIM
She's got a man. A white guy. Tod
something or other.

JAKE
Where does he hang out?

JISM JIM
I don't know.

JAKE
Where!

JISM JIM
Look, I know this chick Niki. She
works at Les Girls. She would know.
Honest.

Van Dorn lets him go and starts to walk away. Looking back,
he sees Jism Jim struggling to his feet. Jake spins around
and punches him once more. Jism Jim tumbles back into his
shower. Jake walks off rubbing his red knuckles.

CUT TO:

EXT. PLAYERS MOTEL - NIGHT

Jake throws his luggage into the trunk of his car and drives
off.

CUT TO:

EXT. LES GIRLS - NIGHT

Les Girls, a garish sexual supermarket, covers several
storefronts. Its fluorescent exterior stands open to drifters
and browsers alike.

Jake straightens his tie-dye shirt, and enters.

CUT TO:

INT. LES GIRLS - NIGHT

Inside Les Girls is a glow of yellow and orange plexiglass.
The bright fluorescents bounce off the white linoleum.

Jake passes an arcade of peep shows and turns the corner.

On one side is a rotunda around which men stand in pay stalls
watching a pair of naked female dancers.

On the other side is a row of curtained "phone booths."

Jake walks up to a WOMAN with a coin changer around her waist.
A lifer.

JAKE
I was told to meet a girl named Niki
here.

LES GIRLS WOMAN
In one of the booths. Any of the
first three.

Jake starts over.

LES GIRLS WOMAN
(continuing)
It's five dollars for two minutes.

JAKE
Huh?

LES GIRLS WOMAN
Five dollars a token.

Jake fishes in his pocket and pulls out a ten-dollar bill.
He hands it to the woman.

JAKE
Here. I'll take two.

The Les Girls Woman punches out two tokens.

Jake cautiously pulls the curtain aside and steps into the
first booth.

The booth is divided by a floor-to-top glass partition. On
Jake's side of the partition is a pay wall phone. On the
other is an orange folding chair.

The sign on the phone reads "One token -- two minutes." Jake
puts a token in the phone.

Niki, the girl from Ramada's set, naked, steps into the other
half of the booth and plops down on the chair.

NIKI
Hello.

Jake picks up the receiver in his half.

JAKE
Are you Niki?

NIKI
Sure. Like in Mikey and Niki. Did
you see that picture?

JAKE
No.

NIKI
Too bad. I wasn't in it.

Jake's eyes flash downward for a moment. No longer shocked,
he is saddened by the demeaning vulgarity of it all.

NIKI
(continuing)
It's your money. You talk.

JAKE
I'm making a film. Jim Sullivan's
going to be in it. He said you might
know where Tod is.

NIKI
Do I know you? Weren't you on the
set the other night? With Ramada.

JAKE
Yeah.

NIKI
You making a feature?

JAKE
Um-hm. Live sound.

NIKI
Got any parts? I'm free. Not free-
free, but, you know, free. I don't
really do this.

Gestures vaguely.

JAKE
Jim and I have been trying to run
down a girl.
(takes out glossy)
Do you know her?

He presses the picture against the stained glass partition.

NIKI
Joanne?

JAKE
You know her?

NIKI
No. I saw her with Tod.

JAKE
Do you know where she lives?

NIKI
Nah.

JAKE
Do you know where she would be?

There is a CLICK and the phone goes dead. Niki says something
but Jake cannot hear her. She motions to the phone as she
gets up to leave.

Jake puts his second token in the phone and Niki sits back
down.

JAKE
(continuing)
Where is she?

NIKI
Tod might know.

JAKE
Where's he?

NIKI
Last I heard he went to San Diego.

JAKE
If we went there, would you be able
to find him?

NIKI
(eyeing him)
You're not a film producer, are you?

JAKE
How much do you make a week, Niki?

Jake uses his manipulative voice, the one he might use when
discussing a shade of blue in a convention display.

NIKI
(catching on)
Are you a private detective?

JAKE
Something like that. How much do you
make?

NIKI
Here? What a joke. There was some
detective asking about that girl.

JAKE
Three hundred?

NIKI
This is just temporary. I once made
nine hundred in outcall.

JAKE
I'll give you $700 a week, cash, if
you help me find this girl.

NIKI
Up front?

JAKE
Half now, half later.

NIKI
Make it nine hundred. That was my
best week.

JAKE
Okay. My client pays for it anyway.

NIKI
When do we start?

JAKE
Tonight. When you get out, we'll go.
(a beat)
Why didn't you tell the other
detective?

NIKI
(shrugs)
This is different. This is nine
hundred dollars.

CUT TO:

EXT. VAN NUYS DELL - NIGHT

Wes parks in front of a Van Nuys delicatessen and walks in.

CUT TO:

INT. VAN NUYS DELI - NIGHT

Wes walks into the well-lit deli and spots Andy Mast sitting
alone with a glass and a bottle of beer.

A cross section of California types are scattered around the
room. A JUKEBOX plays country and western.

WES
Mr. Mast? My name's Wes DeJong. I'm
Jake Van Dorn's brother-in-law. We
met out here a couple months ago
when he hired you. Your agency said
you might be here.

Mast motions for him to sit.

MAST
Ssh. I'm on a stakeout.

WES
(looks around)
Oh.

Mast looks down at the beer bottle.

MAST
I'm staking out this beer bottle.
Trying to find out if I'll finish it
or it'll finish me.

WES
I'm worried about Jake.

MAST
I'm off that case. He fired me.

WES
He didn't look good at all. Something
strange is going on. He's got himself
into some trouble. He wouldn't say
what.

MAST
(lights cigarette)
I'll tell you, that was an interesting
case. The Van Dorn girl. I've handled
runaway cases like it before. Usually
when you put the pressure on the
porn underworld for an underage kid,
she pops up in about a week. Everybody
denies ever seeing her, but there
she is at the airport with a prepaid
ticket home. Well, I put pressure on
all over town for this girl and it
stayed cold as ice. In fact, certain
people for this girl and -- nothing.
(thinks)
I guess I gave your brother-in-law
sort of a raw deal.

Mast spots a long-haired youth walking toward the juke box
and calls to him:

MAST
(continuing)
Hey, buddy, E-fifteen.

The kid ignores him and makes his selection: a rock song.

WES
I want to rehire you. To find out
what's happening to my brother-in-
law.

MAST
I've been on another case. All day.
(a beat)
I suppose I can move it over. Seven
fifty a week, plus travel expenses.

WES
Do you really think Kristen is just
a runaway?

Mast thinks. A shadow crosses his face.

MAST
Maybe. Maybe not.

WES
I also want you to protect my brother-
in-law.

MAST
Huh?

WES
You have to understand. He can be
mean, self-righteous. He had a Vishund
once. Loved that dog. He came home
one day and the dog bit him. He took
that dog and staked him out in the
back yard. It was winter. Every day
he came home and watched that dog
until he froze. He's capable of doing
anything.

MAST
To his own daughter?

WES
To anybody.

CUT TO:

EXT. HIGHWAY - NIGHT

Van Dorn's car speeds through the California night. The
Pacific, moon-lit, stretches like a sinister plain.

CUT TO:

EXT. SAN DIEGO MOTEL - NIGHT

Jake pulls into a freeway exit motel and parks at the office.

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S MOTEL ROOM - NIGHT

Jake's suitcase lies open on the luggage rack. He pulls off
his tie-dyed shirt, folds it up neatly, and places it in the
suitcase.

He sits on the edge of the bed and undoes his shoestrings.
He removes each shoe as if it were an individual effort.

There's a KNOCK.

Jake looks through the blinds, unhooks the chain and opens
the door.

Niki, tugging up her jeans, scuffles in.

NIKI
You actually paid for both these
rooms? I thought you were just going
to get a receipt for two, and kickback
the desk man.

Jake, awkward, puts a shirt on.

NIKI
(continuing)
I thought you were going to bed?

JAKE
I am.

Niki is street-wise. She can instantly interpret situations
which would stymie the average person; but, as if to balance
this perceptivity, she is often stymied by the ordinary.

In brief: she assumes Jake is paying her $900 a week not
only to help him but also to be his personal playmate.

NIKI
Do you have any pills? Any Valium,
Librium? You know, pimps will sell
Valium at fifty cents a piece. Can
you believe that?

Niki sits on his bed, her legs folded under her.

NIKI
(continuing)
You know Valiums pick me right up?
Take four or five and I'm wide awake.
Isn't that strange? Know what puts
me to sleep? Coke. I think I'm really
fucked up.

Niki removes her sweater and starts to pull off her Rorer T-
shirt. Jake motions for her to stop.

JAKE
No.

NIKI
Huh?

JAKE
Niki. Calm down. Relax. Let's just
talk for a while. Then, later, you'll
go back to your room and we'll get
some sleep.

He sits on the bed beside her.

NIKI
You have anything to drink? You want
to go out and get something?

JAKE
I don't drink, but you can go out.

NIKI
You don't drink?

JAKE
(points to stomach)
Ulcers.

Niki studies him for a moment, then says:

NIKI
You're not a private detective either,
are you?

JAKE
No.

NIKI
I didn't think so. I've fucked
detectives. Who are you?

JAKE
A friend.

NIKI
Of Joanne's?

JAKE
Yeah.
(looks away)
I'm her father.

NIKI
(more disappointment
than shock)
Jesus.

JAKE
Her name is Kristen. She disappeared
a couple of months ago.

NIKI
And your wife? Where's she?

JAKE
She's dead.

NIKI
Hey, don't worry about it. Your
daughter's around. We'll find her in
a couple days.

CUT TO:

EXT. SAN DIEGO - DOWNTOWN - DAY

Jake's car drives through San Diego's "downtown," four square
blocks of adult bookstores, peep show and flop houses south
of San Diego's center. Uniformed soldiers from Camp Pendleton
and the Miramar Naval Station occasionally cross the wide
streets.

The Singapore Club, Lux Adult Movies, the Princess Rap Parlor,
Curious Books Shop, Sexciting Movies...

CUT TO:

EXT. THE OKINAWA BAR - DAY

Jake and Niki walk toward the Okinawa, a hangout for working
girls, players and street people.

Niki, tugging up her jeans, walks next to Jake. She wears
her Rorer T-shirt; Jake a blue dress shirt.

NIKI
(putting her arm on
Jake)
Jim Rucker runs this place. He knows
where everybody is. It's a nice place.
Hires a lot of girls, but they don't
pay shit.

CUT TO:

INT. OKINAWA BAR - DAY

Jake holds the door open for Niki as they enter.

The Okinawa is a credit to its namesake. A BLACK PLAYER,
sitting at the bar, stares absently at two girls playing
pool.

Niki, in her element, steps up to the bar.

NIKI
(to Counter Girl)
Is Rucker here?

BAR MAID
He'll be back in a couple hours.

NIKI
Tell him Louise was here. I'll come
back later.

They turn to exit.

EXT. SAN DIEGO BEACH - DAY

Jake and Niki sit at a ramshackle picnic table at a park
overlooking the ocean. Several children play in the distance.

Niki finishes her Big Mac, crumbles the bag and throws it
away. She unwraps a Milky Way and she finishes her fries.

Jake watches with astonishment as she chomps her way through
a second candy bar.

JAKE
You really shouldn't eat like that.
All that sugar. It's not good for
you.

NIKI
At least I'm a growing person.

JAKE
You won't keep growing at this rate.

NIKI
What rate?

JAKE
You know what I'm talking about.

NIKI
(snotty)
You never met a working girl before,
have you? You think I like sucking
off guys all night? Maybe I do. So
what?
(a beat)
You can't even say it, can you?

JAKE
Say what?

NIKI
'Sucking off.'

JAKE
Okay. Sucking off. Now does that
make me as good as you?

NIKI
You don't understand shit.

JAKE
Okay, tell me. Why do you live like
you do?

NIKI
Did you ever live in a room with six
people and you didn't have any money,
any food, any furniture? Have your
brother come out, his car break down,
he can't get a job? Your friends
stealing food, going through trash
behind a supermarket?

JAKE
(sympathetic)
Is that the way it was with you?

NIKI
No. But does it make any difference?
(a beat)
How did you get to be the way you
are?

Jake doesn't answer.

NIKI
(continuing)
Don't knock it. A girl can save up a
lot money doing this -- big money.
Then you're free. You can go off to
Europe, meet somebody, get married.
My girlfriend's going to buy her own
beauty parlor. Not me. I'm gonna
travel. 'Keep movin' that's my motto.
(a beat)
Would you rather work at Copper Penny
at a dollar-eighty an hour, having
every two-bit cocksucker able to
yell at you? I can make more money
suc... doing what I do for five
minutes than I can all week at another
job.

JAKE
You used to work at Copper Penny?

NIKI
No.

JAKE
(pause)
You and I, Niki, have very different
ideas about sex.

NIKI
Why? Are you a sex fiend?

JAKE
(smiles)
No.

NIKI
Neither am I.

JAKE
But it's all you do.

NIKI
How important do you think sex is?

JAKE
Not very.

NIKI
We're just alike. You think sex is
so unimportant you don't do it. I
think sex is so unimportant I don't
care who I do it with.

Jake thinks. That sounds right. But it can't be right. He
looks away, then back at her.

JAKE
You can never understand a person
like me. I am a mystery to you. A
middle class person, a Mid-westerner.
A man who doesn't pursue women. A
man who believes in social order. A
man who goes to church, believes in
God, and a man who, at the end of
his life, believes he will be
redeemed.
(a beat)
This is all unfathomable to you.

Fifty years ago, in art, the prostitute sought to justify
her life to the bourgeoisie. Now it is the bourgeoisie who
must justify himself to the whore.

JAKE
(continuing)
I don't see why I must justify myself
to you. I don't care about the things
you do. I don't care what's happening
in New York or Los Angeles. I don't
care about movies or TV. I don't
care who's on Johnny Carson.

NIKI
(incredulous)
What do you care about?

JAKE
(cold)
I care about my daughter.

INT. OKINAWA BAR - DAY

Niki and Jake stand at the counter talking with JIM RUCKER,
an entrepreneurial type about 40.

NIKI
You remember me. Louise? Rhymes with
squeeze.

RUCKER
(looks, then nods)
You working in San Diego now?

NIKI
I'm still in L.A., but I'm looking
for Tod. I heard he was around.

RUCKER
'Was.' He and that shitheel Ratan
went down to T-J. Maybe I shouldn't
say that. Anyway, I hear he's back
in Frisco now.

NIKI
Was he with a girl?

RUCKER
No.

NIKI
Thanks.

Niki starts to leave.

RUCKER
Keep in touch, baby. Got some good
stuff comin' up. Need you back, baby.
(as they exit)
And take good care of your friend
for me.

Jake turns back as Niki gives him a tug.

CUT TO:

EXT. OKINAWA BAR - DAY

They walk toward the car.

JAKE
What's T-J?

NIKI
Tijuana.

JAKE
They were here?

NIKI
Tod was.
(her voice chills)
He was with Ratan.

JAKE
What does that mean?
(no answer)
What does he do?

NIKI
He deals in pain.

JAKE
Is Kristen safe?

She doesn't answer.

JAKE
(continuing)
Let's get a plane for San Francisco.

CUT TO:

INT. L.A. POLICE MISSING PERSONS - DAY

DETECTIVE BURROWS walks back into his office. Mast, sitting
on the edge of the desk, is waiting for him.

BURROWS
Apparently your friend has gone into
Mexico. A Border Guard responded to
the APB. How does it feel to have
the L.A.P.D. doing your work for
you?

MAST
You're going to thank me for this.
You know what the media's like. They
love this kinda shit. If that guy
goes off half-cocked and gets himself
hurt, you're going to have so much
bad publicity, you...

BURROWS
(interrupting)
I heard you the first time. We had
nothing to go on with this kid. Just
a runaway.
(a beat)
Do you really think he's in danger?

MAST
If he has anything to say about it,
yeah. I've been asking a lot of
questions and I don't like the answers
I'm getting. He's made a lot of people
nervous, including some poor faggot
who thought he was going to be a
movie star.

BURROWS
We aren't gonna arrest him for that...

MAST
(interrupting)
Big threat. TV would ream you.

BURROWS
Keep me informed of what he's up to.
You help me, I'll help you.

Mast nods.

BURROWS
(continuing)
Why don't people stay where they
belong?

CUT TO:

INT. SAN DIEGO AIRPORT - DAY

Jake and Niki sit in a line of multi-colored plexi-glass
chairs in the Western Terminal of the airport. Niki munches
a pack of Chuckles while Jake, his elbows on his knees, looks
at the floor. Niki prattles on.

NIKI
You know what your problem is? You're
a very negative person. You think
negatively.

Jake tries to ignore her.

NIKI
(continuing)
You have to believe in something.
What do they believe in -- the
Whatjamacillit church?

JAKE
Christian Reformed. It's a Dutch
Calvinist denomination.

NIKI
Do they believe in reincarnation? I
believe in reincarnation.

JAKE
They believe in the 'TULIP.'

NIKI
What the crap?

JAKE
(smiles)
It's an anagram. It comes from the
Canons of Dort. Every letter stands
for a different belief. T-U-L-I-P.
Like -- are you sure you're interested
in this?

NIKI
Yeah, yeah, go on.

JAKE
T stands for Total depravity, that
is, all men, through original sin,
are totally evil and incapable of
good. 'All my works are like filthy
rags in the sight of the Lord.'

NIKI
Shit.

Jake is charmed. He's never been called upon to explain his
beliefs to someone so totally ignorant of them.

JAKE
Be that as it may. U is for
Unconditional Election. God has chosen
a certain number of people to be
saved, The Elect, and He has chosen
them from the beginning of time. L
is for Limited Atonement. Only a
limited number will be atoned, will
go to Heaven.

NIKI
Fuck.

JAKE
I can stop if you want.

NIKI
No, please go on.

The INTERCOM ANNOUNCES a flight: Jake listens for a moment.
It's a flight to Mexico City.

JAKE
I is for Irresistible Grace. God's
grace cannot be resisted or denied.
And P is for the Perseverance of the
Saints. Once you are in Grace you
cannot fall from the number of the
elect. And that's the 'TULIP.'

NIKI
Wait, wait. I'm trying to figure
this out. This is like Rona Barrett.
Before you become saved, God already
knows who you are?

JAKE
He has to. That's Predestination. If
God is omniscient, if He knows
everything -- and He wouldn't be God
if He didn't -- then He must have
known, even before the creation of
the world, the names of those who
would be saved.

NIKI
So it's already worked out. The fix
is in?

JAKE
More or less.

NIKI
Wow. Then why be good? Either you're
saved or you ain't.

JAKE
Out of gratitude for being chosen.
That's where Grace comes in. God
first chooses you, then allows you,
by Grace, to choose Him of your own
free will.

NIKI
(amazed)
You really believe all that?

JAKE
Yeah.
(shrugs)
Well, mostly.

NIKI
I thought I was fucked up.

JAKE
I'll admit it's confusing from the
outside. You've got to see it from
the inside.

NIKI
If you see anything from the inside
it makes sense. You ought to hear
perverts talk. A guy once almost had
me convinced to let his dachshund
fuck me.

JAKE
It's not quite the same thing.

NIKI
It doesn't make any sense to me.

The INTERCOM ANNOUNCES Western Flight #601 to San Francisco.
They rise.

CUT TO:

EXT. TRAVEL LODGE - DAY

Jake's rental car pulls into a San Francisco Travel Lodge.

CUT TO:

EXT. NORTH BEACH - AFTERNOON

Niki places a call from a phone booth. Jake watches the
passing denizens of North Beach.

The familiar sordid tableau is played out before his eyes:
massage parlors, peep shows, strip joints, sex shops.

NIKI
(hangs up phone)
Tod'll meet you at the bookstore at
Eddy and O'Farrell tomorrow noon. I
told him you were a 'specialty'
customer.

JAKE
Why can't I meet him now?

Niki, cocky, walks next to Jake. She is in her element. She
calls out to a pimp:

NIKI
I hope your prick falls off.

Jake, surprised, turns away from the pimp's cold stare.

JAKE
Why can't I meet him now?

Niki brazenly calls out to a strutting hooker:

NIKI
Rot in hell, honey.
(to Jake)
He's busy now.

JAKE
Where does he live.

NIKI
Just a second. It's my ass I'm
risking. You better do it my way.
These fuckers don't mess around.

Niki walks off. Jake follows.

CUT TO:

EXT. TRAVEL LODGE - DUSK

Jake's rental car is parked outside his motel room.

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S ROOM - NIGHT

Jake sits on the edge of his bed, studying the crease in his
trousers.

His shirt is partiallly open.

Niki, swigging a Coke sits squatted atop the built in desk.

JAKE
I must have been in more motel rooms
this week than in the rest of my
life. At least it feels that way.

NIKI
I know what you mean. After a while
they all look the same.

JAKE
They are the same.

NIKI
Do you live in a house back in
wherever.

JAKE
Grand Rapids? Of course.

NIKI
On your own land?

Jake nods.

NIKI
(continuing)
Just you and your daughter?

Jake nods.

NIKI
(continuing)
Look, I really don't know your
daughter but...

JAKE
But what?

NIKI
I wouldn't expect too much. I mean
about her coming back. Once a girl
gets into the life.

JAKE
What makes you so sure?

NIKI
(changing the subject)
You wife isn't dead is she?

Van Dorn surprised, turns around.

JAKE
Why do you say that?

NIKI
Just a guess. She ain't dead though
is she?

Jake shakes his head "no."

NIKI
(continuing)
She left you right?

JAKE
Yeah.
(a beat)
She was the one called Joanne. How'd
you find that out?

NIKI
Just a guess. Did you have it good
with your wife? You know, sex.

Jake resents Niki's forwardness: what business of hers is
this?

JAKE
I don't blame you, Niki. Really I
don't. It's this culture, where
everything's based on sex, sold on
sex...
(starts to get angry)
...magazines, music, TV. It's
destroying everything. Buy this 'cause
of sex, use this 'cause of sex. Kids
think it's normal. They think they're
supposed to talk dirty, wear scanty
clothes...

NIKI
(interrupting)
Don't get upset. I lied too. I don't
make no five hundred dollars a week.
Everything I make goes to Granville.

JAKE
Granville?

NIKI
My man. 'Pimp.' I split 'cause he
don't treat me for shit. Thinks he's
so cool 'cause he's black. I once
tried to take my clothes but he says,
'You can't take 'em 'cause they're
my clothes -- I bought 'em.' Yeah,
with my fucking money...

Jake doesn't want to get involved with Niki's problems:

JAKE
Look, Niki, this really isn't my
business. I don't know anything
about...

NIKI
So I guess we're both fucked, huh?
But at least you get to go to heaven.
I don't get shit.

The DOORBELL RINGS. Jake, suspicious, walks over to the window
and peeks out. Seeing someone he recognizes, he opens the
door.

Andy Mast, woebegone and wrinkled as usual, stands at the
door.

MAST
(looking at Niki
knowingly)
This is just how you found me once.

Jake slips outside.

CUT TO:

EXT. TRAVEL LODGE - DUSK

JAKE
What are you doing here?

MAST
I felt like such a shit, pilgrim,
after what I did to you -- not that
I did anything wrong -- that I kept
investigating, poking around. There's
some poor s.o.b. in L.A. with his
face all bent out of shape who you've
damaged his movie career. Lucky for
him, people don't look at his face.

JAKE
Do the police want to arrest me?

MAST
Nah. They don't care about some faggot
hustler. They're more interested in
your daughter's health -- and yours.
Like I am.

JAKE
(disbelieving)
Yeah, sure.

MAST
Listen, pilgrim, you're way out on a
limb here. You don't know what you're
into.

JAKE
You sure as hell haven't been any
help.

MAST
I'm sorry about that. Have you found
anything out? You've got to tell me.

JAKE
Why don't you tell me something for
a change?

MAST
Like what?

JAKE
Who is Ratan?

Mast pales.

MAST
Where'd you hear that name?

JAKE
I just heard. Who is he?

Mast walks toward the swimming pool.

Mast looks at the still, blue surface of the pool. Jake steps
beside him. A tourist passes by with his two sons. Mast
thinks, then speaks:

MAST
You know, it's possible to buy
anything on this earth. You can buy
child whores, slaves. You can have
people raped, killed...
(a beat)
One of the men who supposedly arranges
such things is named Ratan. He usually
isn't in this country.
(a beat)
How'd you hear about him?

JAKE
It's just a name.

MAST
Don't do anything more. I'll find
out what I can.

JAKE
(nodding toward motel)
Does she know anything about this?

MAST
Who? The whore? No. She's just a
victim. A dime a dozen.

CUT TO:

INT. JAKE'S ROOM - NIGHT

Jake sleeps in his Travel Lodge bed.

A jagged shard of blue light plays across his face.

CUT TO:

EXT. EDDY AND O'FARRELL STREETS - DAY

Jake stands at the corner, then turns and enters the porn
bookstore.

CUT TO:

INT. PANDORA'S BOOKS - DAY

Jake looks around.

Seeing no one he recognizes, he pays his admission fee walks
down a rack, picks up a copy of "Hot Twat," pages through
it.

It's been over a week since Jake first stepped into a porno
bookstore. The change in his manner is striking. He now seems
at ease in the endless night-world of pandering and
pornography.

A few moments later, a long-haired man steps up behind him.
The young man is wearing red alligator boots and a silver
and turquoise belt -- like the man in "Slave of Love." Tod
scrutinizes Jake a moment before speaking.

TOD
(under his breath)
Hey, Jake.

Jake turns. Tod gives him some skin. Tod seems unattractive
at first, but the longer one looks at him, the more oddly
sensual he appears.

TOD
(continuing)
I hear you got money to spend.
(as Jake nods)
I hear you're interested in...
interesting things.

JAKE
Yeah.

TOD
Do you work for the San Francisco
Police Department, or do you have
any other affiliation with any law
enforcement agency?

JAKE
No.

TOD
What you got in mind?

JAKE
I want to meet Ratan.

TOD
(backs off)
What is that? A kind of chair? I
never heard of no Ratan.

JAKE
(studying Tod)
I was told that there were certain
things that only Ratan could provide.

TOD
You're talking about real excitement?

JAKE
Yeah. I heard you and Ratan just
came from Mexico. And that you had a
film of a girl being, ah you know...

TOD
Who told you about this?

JAKE
Rucker.

TOD
I don't know no Ratan, but I may be
able to help you out. It's not me,
of course. Just helping out a friend.
It'll cost you five hundred bucks
for a single screening.

JAKE
Is this with a girl named Kristen?

TOD
(nods)
Um-hm. You got the five hundred?

JAKE
Well...

TOD
Take it or leave it.

JAKE
Okay.

TOD
Meet me here today at seven o'clock.
With the money. Then we'll go see
the film.

JAKE
Good.

Tod puts his hand on Jake's shoulder and smiles.

TOD
You ain't gonna ever have no thrill
like this.

CUT TO:

INT. TRAVEL LODGE - DUSK

Niki sits on a bed watching a syndicated sitcom and munching
a Taco Bell enchilada.

She hears a CAR pull up and a man's FOOTSTEPS walks to the
door.

She cautiously gets up to see who it is.

EXT. EDDY AND O'FARRELL STREETS - DUSK

Jake walks out of Pandora's Books behind Tod. They turn the
corner and walk out of sight.

CUT TO:

EXT. JONES STREET - DUSK

Jake and Tod enter the "Hot Pink" massage parlor. A sign on
the front door reads: "Sex/Intercourse/Here."

CUT TO:

INT. HOT PINK - NIGHT

Tod leads Jake past two girls into the back of the parlor.
Tod smiles to one of the parlor girls and touches the other.

INT. MASSAGE PARLOR - NIGHT

Tod ushers Jake into a barren "office" in the rear of the
parlor.

A sheet has been tacked up at one end of the office. Across
the room, the projectionist, a boy about 15, stands next to
a battered old 16mm silent projector.

Two other men sit in the darkened room. One looks middle-
aged and decadent; the other, about 26, wears jeans, a western
shirt, and a beat up flight jacket. He's saved up several
years for this.

Jake sits in an empty office chair next to the other men.

Tod nods to the boy and he starts up the projector. A grainy
black and white image appears on the screen.

The projectionist punches a cheap cassette player which echoes
scratchy Mexican fiesta music through the room.

It's clear why the projectionist has chosen a Latin sound
track: the film is set up in a Tijuana flophouse.

On screen, a girl with long blonde hair and Kristen's build
sits on the edge of a barren double bed. She wears jeans and
a shirt. Her face is covered by a black leather mask. The
eye slits are taped shut.

A Cerveza poster of a half-naked Mexican girl hangs on the
wall behind her.

A young Mexican, stripped to the waist, walks over to the
girl. Taking instructions from someone off camera, he starts
to undress her.

The girl, unable to see her seducer, nevertheless submits to
his desires.

Jake watches the screen from the shadows. The pale images
flicker across a metal filing cabinet behind him. Tod slips
out of the room.

On screen, the young Mexican has finished the girl. He turns
to the director for further instructions.

A man wearing a white suit walks into the frame. He flashes
a stiletto from his sleeve and stabs the young Mexican. The
girl, not able to see what is happening, turns her head
quizzically.

Jake watches in unbelieving horror. The young man in the
flight jacket is calm and dispassionate.

The young Mexican falls to the floor bleeding. The man in
the white suit bends down and wipes the stiletto on the
Mexican's pant leg.

The man in the white suit steps over to the girl and puts
one hand under her mask. He lifts his stiletto again. He
rips off the mask from the girl's face; it is not Kristen.

Jake is relieved. The faces of the others are full of
anticipation.

Jake's relief turns to horror at what he now sees. Blurred
images reflect against the metal cabinet behind him.

CUT TO:

INT. TRAVEL LODGE - NIGHT

Mast, waiting for Jake, talks to Niki. The TV still plays in
the background.

MAST
You know Granville's looking for
you, Niki?

NIKI
My name ain't Niki. It's Pattica,
like in Attica.

MAST
Granville's looking for you anyway.

NIKI
(arrogant)
Who's that?

MAST
The guy who bought you that ring.

NIKI
Well, he can just fuck himself.

She pulls off her ring and starts to hand it to Mast.

MAST
Keep it, honey. You're gonna need
it. I know that boy. He can make
life real tough for a working girl.
He'll string you out again.

Gestures to his veins.

NIKI
You can fuck off, too.

MAST
You're taking a big chance.

NIKI
I ain't ever gonna see him again
anyway.

MAST
Oh no? What you gonna do? Get a job?

Niki, sullen, looks away. Then, defensive, she says what
she's been thinking.

NIKI
Jake'll take care of me.

MAST
Who? Van Dorn? You must be kidding
yourself, honey. You think once that
guy finds his daughter he'll care
about you?

Niki looks away again.

A car pulls in front of the motel room. They both turn toward
the door.

Jake, weary and angry, walks in out of the night. Ignoring
Mast, he takes Niki by the arm and leads her out of earshot.

JAKE
Niki...

When Mast moves to overhear them, Jake turns and edges him
toward the door.

MAST
What happened, pilgrim?

JAKE
(forceful)
Just leave me alone.

MAST
But I'm here to help you...

Jake ushers Mast out the door and chains it. Mast waits
outside as Jake returns to Niki.

NIKI
Did you find out where she was?

JAKE
Tod gave me the slip. I have to find
him again. Where does he live?

NIKI
(sensing something is
wrong)
What happened?

JAKE
(cold)
Where is he?

NIKI
I can't tell you that.

Taking Niki gently by the shoulder, Jake sits her on the
edge of the bed. He speaks in a calm, forceful, parental
tone:

JAKE
Listen, Niki. My daughter's been
missing five months. I've gone through
a lot to find out what's happened to
her. I just saw a girl killed. I
will not let Tod slip out of my hands.
You have to tell me where he is.

NIKI
But then you'll forget about me.

JAKE
(insistent)
Where is he, Niki?

Jake starts to raise his hand.

NIKI
(relents)
Try a place called the House of
Bondage. It's a plain black storefront
next to Jane's. There are some
apartments in back.

Jake stands up and, taking Niki's head in his hands, kisses
her on the forehead.

JAKE
I won't forget you.

Jake turns and exits.

CUT TO:

EXT. TRAVEL LODGE - NIGHT

Jake passes Mast and heads for his car. Mast restrains him.

MAST
What are you doing, pilgrim? Where
are you going?

Jake tries to push his way past Mast.

MAST
(continuing)
Let me take care of this. I don't
want you to get hurt.

Jake pushes Mast aside. Mast continues to talk as Jake opens
his car door and gets in.

MAST
(continuing)
Don't do anything until the police
get there. Don't hurt that girl.

Jake turns his car and takes off. Mast hurries back into the
motel room.

CUT TO:

INT. TRAVEL LODGE - NIGHT

Mast heads immediately for the phone, talking to Niki as he
goes:

MAST
You've got to tell me where he's
going.

Mast sits down and dials.

MAST
(continuing)
Hello, police? My name's Mast. Get
me Joe Klein in Vice.

Mast turns to Niki:

MAST
(continuing; tough)
You don't know that man. He'll hurt
his own fucking daughter. I've got
to stop him.
(a beat)
You know about Ratan, don't you?

Niki looks on in fear and confusion.

CUT TO:

EXT. EDDY STREET - NIGHT

Van Dorn walks down the garish neon strip past "Jane's
Pleasure House" to an unmarked black storefront. The door is
open.

A light shines on a sign reading: "387 OPEN."

He walks in.

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE OF BONDAGE - NIGHT

As Jake steps through the barred black door, he is hit with
a wave of familiar smells: Human sweat, blood and sexual
fluids.

The House of Bondage specializes in the three "disciplines:"
bondage, dominance and humiliation. It has four domination
rooms, each decorated in a different decor -- Babylonian,
Medieval, Louis Quatorze, prison motifs -- to satisfy a
variety of tastes.

Two dominants, dressed in black satin pants and shirts, sit
on the sofa. HOPE, wearing a black silver-studded collar,
walks over to Jake. Her voice is hard:

HOPE
Hello. You want some information?

JAKE
Yeah.

HOPE
We offer...

JAKE
Yeah, yeah...

HOPE
...the disciplines: bondage,
domination and humiliation.

JAKE
I'm looking for Tod. Is he in?

HOPE
I don't know no Tod.

JAKE
What girls you got here?

HOPE
My name is Hope. This is Faith.
(gestures to girl on
sofa)
Charity's in back.

JAKE
That's all you got, three girls?

HOPE
Man, how many girls do you need?

JAKE
I was told there was a real nice
girl here named Joanne. Quite young.

HOPE
That's Charity. She's out back. She'll
be free in half hour.

Jake pushes her aside.

The girls watch with surprise as Jake marches through the
curtain toward the rear of the parlor.

CUT TO:

INT. HOUSE OF BONDAGE - REAR - NIGHT

Jake steps down the corridor. A customer emerges from a room
and passes him.

He slides open one door: the Medieval Dungeon is empty. He
continues on.

He passes the Louis Quatorze Room. It, too, is empty.

Hope calls from behind Jake:

HOPE (O.S.)
Tod!

Tod steps into the corridor in front of Jake. Tod squints to
recognize the intruder.

TOD
(suspicious)
What do you want?
(scrutinizes him)
Do I know you from somewhere?

JAKE
I want to know where my daughter is.
Her name is Kristen, or Joanne. She's
with you.

TOD
I don't know what you're talking
about.

He starts to leave.

JAKE
The police know about Ratan. They
know he's here with you. They know
everything.

Tod is taken aback, but tries not to show it.

TOD
Oh, yeah? Goody for them.

Tod starts past Jake, but Jake stretches out his hand.

TOD
(continuing)
Get the fuck out of here.

Tod tries to push past Van Dorn but Jake grabs his arms and
tries to twist them. Tod breaks free and Jake smacks him
across his forehead with his open hand.

TOD
(continuing)
You wait here. I'll find out where
she is.

JAKE
You ain't goin' nowhere alone.

Jake is beyond reasoning. Tod looks around for an alternate
route of escape.

Tod ducks into the Prison Room. Jake follows.

Vertical bars cover the grey walls. Handcuffs and chains
hang from the bars. In the center of the room, a Harley
Davidson "Hog" is incongruously mounted, its front wheel
pointed skyward. Leather straps are attached to the
handlebars.

Tod skirts the Harley and pushes it toward Jake as he enters.
The huge 1200-pound machine crashes toward Van Dorn.

Jake jumps back as the bike bounces in front of him, then
starts for Tod.

Lowering his shoulder, Tod smashes through the thin pasteboard
wall. Jake, steeping over the motorcycle, pursues.

In the Louis Quatorze Room, Jake grabs Tod by the shoulders
and spins him around. Tod swings as he turns, hitting Jake.
Jake grabs Tod's legs as he falls.

They both crash through the next pasteboard wall into the
Medieval Dungeon.

Tod breaks free, runs through the dungeon and bursts through
the last pasteboard wall. Jake pulls himself to his feet and
follows.

JAKE
Where is she?

Hope and Faith, standing against the wall, watch as Tod and
Jake burst through the wall and dash out the front door.

CUT TO:

EXT. O'FARRELL - NIGHT

Jake chases Tod out of the House of Bondage.

Van Dorn pushes one girl, knocks over another and catches up
with Tod at the corner.

He tackles Tod around the waist, rams him into a building
and turns him around.

JAKE
Where's Ratan?

TOD
Who?

Jake grabs the young man by his hair and pulls him down the
street. Tod yelps.

JAKE
Ratan!

Passing a parking meter, Jake smashes Tod's head into it.
Tod's forehead cracks into the glass.

Tod, bleeding, protests:

TOD
That film was a fake! Everything's
phony...

JAKE
Ratan!

When Tod doesn't immediately answer, Jake rams his skull
into the next parking meter. Tod, bleeding, dazed, struggles
to stay on his feet. Jake pulls him forward.

JAKE
(continuing)
I know he's here!

Gripping his hair more tightly, Van Dorn drags him to the
next parking meter and smashes his head into it.

JAKE
(continuing)
Ratan!

Curious bystanders watch Jake smash the youth's bleeding
head into the next parking meter.

TOD
(terrified)
Who the fuck knows? The Four Aces.
He goes there.

JAKE
Let's go.

Van Dorn pulls Tod down the sidewalk toward the Four Aces.

CUT TO:

INT. FOUR ACES - NIGHT

Van Dorn pulls the bleeding Tod into the Four Aces, a low-
life strip club.

A dozen solo patrons are scattered around the dimly lit bar.
On stage, a couple performs a routine sex simulation act to
a scratchy Barry White record.

CUT TO:

EXT. HOUSE OF BONDAGE - NIGHT

Two police cars, dome lights flashing, pull up in front of
the House of Bondage. Mast's car pulls up behind them.

CUT TO:

INT. FOUR ACES - NIGHT

A man wearing a white suit sits at a table with several girls.
He immediately recognizes Tod. This is RATAN. The man who
killed the young Mexican and girl in the film.

Ratan starts to rise. Jake drops Tod and heads toward Ratan.

A girl wearing a skimpy halter stands up between Ratan and
Jake. She turns and looks back at Jake: it is Kristen.

She is terrified. Kristen turns and runs away, stumbling
over a chair.

Ratan rushes toward the front door.

In the same instant Jake sees Kristen falling, Ratan fleeing.

Trying to get around Jake, Ratan flashes his stiletto forward.

A gash razors across Jake's upper chest.

Ratan's stiletto flashes forward: Jake's arm is cut. Jake
clasps Ratan and thrusts him backward.

CUT TO:

EXT. FOUR ACES - NIGHT

The street fills with SIRENS, flashing light and police.

Mast rushes toward The Four Aces. Niki follows.

CUT TO:

INT. FOUR ACES - NIGHT

Jake rams Ratan backward into the smoke-colored front window.

Ratan's back smashes through the plate glass. Ratan's feet
lift off the floor as he falls backward.

Sinking backward against the broken glass, Ratan swings his
stiletto at Jake.

Jake, protecting himself from the knife, flips Ratan over.

Ratan's chest and stomach rasp across the jagged glass.

Jake grabs Ratan's head in both his hands and forces it
downward onto the bottom edge of the jagged window frame.

He rubs Ratan's neck across the glass: every artery, vein
and capillary rip out of Ratan's neck.

Ratan collapses against the window frame.

TWO OFFICERS, guns drawn, rush toward Ratan's body. The Second
Officer pulls out his handcuffs, then realizes it will not
be needed.

Jake turns and heads toward where he last saw Kristen.

The First Officer aims his gun at Jake and calls out:

FIRST OFFICER
Halt!

Mast and plainclothes officer (Joe Klein), rush over and
instruct the Officers to ease off.

Jake walks across the now empty bar. Several tables are
overturned.

Jake walks to the table where Kristen tripped. Following her
logical path, Jake walks into the women's rest room.

CUT TO:

INT. REST ROOM - NIGHT

Kristen squeezes herself against the yellow rest room wall.

Trembling, she holds her twisted ankle and looks at her father
in fear.

Jake takes off his torn coat and drapes it over his daughter's
shoulders. She tries not to look at him.

KRISTEN
Don't hurt me.

JAKE
Come on, Kristen. Let's go home.

He helps her up.

CUT TO:

EXT. O'FARRELL - NIGHT

Flashing red and yellow lights illuminate the chaos:

-- Curious mobs press against police lines.

-- Ambulance attendants lift Ratan's body onto a stretcher.

-- The two officers handcuff a bloodied and confused Tod.

-- Police officers interview Hope, Faith and other by-
standers.

Mast walks over to Jake and Kristen. Niki watches from a
distance.

JAKE
There's another one. Tod. In the
club.

Mast watches the ambulance attendants cover Ratan's body.
Jake leads Kristen to a police car and places her in the
rear seat.

Jake sees Niki in the crowd. She is watching Jake and Kristen.
She knows she no longer has a place in his life.

He walks over to her.

JAKE
Niki, maybe I can... There's probably
some way to...

Niki does what Jake cannot: she breaks the connection.

NIKI
(ice cold)
You got your daughter. I got my money.
So now fuck off.

Niki turns on her heel and walks into the neon darkness.

Jake walks back to Mast.

JAKE
Andy, can you do something for her?
Maybe money...

MAST
Go home, pilgrim. There's nothing
you can do. Forget this place. Start
over.

Jake walks back to where his daughter waits for him.

The MUSIC turns into an orchestrated version of "Precious
Memories."

DISSOLVE TO:

MONTAGE

As the MUSIC RISES we DISSOLVE BETWEEN:

-- Wes, Anne and Marsha welcome Kristen back in their home.
Anne embraces her tearfully.

-- Jake, back at work, talks to Mary near the lathes.

-- Niki, wearing white vinyl boots and a blonde wig, walks
the streets of Los Angeles.

-- Kristen lies sleeping peacefully in her bedroom.

-- Jake sleeps. Blue light falls across his face.

Slowly, burning through his face, the grainy black and white
image of a girl wearing a black mask appears. A hand reaches
down to pull off the mask.

Jake wakes suddenly from his dream, his screaming face double-
exposed with the terrified young girl's.

FADE OUT:

THE END

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