"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 ]

"SEX, LIES, AND VIDEOTAPE"

by

Steven Soderbergh



EXT. HIGHWAY -- DAY

GRAHAM DALTON, twenty-nine, drives his '69 Cutlass while
smoking a cigarette. One could describe his appearance as
punk/arty, but neither would do him justice. He is a man of
obvious intelligence, and his face is amiable. There is only
one key on his keyring, and it is in the ignition.

ANN
(voice over)
Garbage. I started thinking about
what happens to all the garbage. I
mean, where do we put all of it, we
have to run out of places to put it
eventually, don't we? This happened
to me before when that barge with
all the garbage was stranded and
nobody would take it? Remember that?

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE -- DAY

ANN BISHOP MILLANEY, twenty-six, sits opposite her therapist.

She is an extremely attractive woman, dressed in a mature
preppy style. There is a wedding ring on her left hand.

DOCTOR
Yes, I remember. What do you do when
these moods overtake you?

ANN
Nothing. I mean, nothing. I try not
to do anything that will produce
garbage, so obviously we're talking
about eating and basic stuff like
that. Did you know that the average
person produces three pounds of
garbage a day?

DOCTOR
No, I didn't.

ANN
Don't you think that's a lot of
garbage? I'd really like to know
where it's all going to go.

DOCTOR
Do you have any idea what triggered
this concern?

ANN
Well, this weekend John was taking
out the garbage, and he kept spilling
things out of the container, and I
started imagining a container that
grew garbage, like it just kept
filling up and overflowing all by
itself, and how could you stop that
if it started happening?

DOCTOR
Ann, do you see a pattern here?

ANN
What do you mean?

DOCTOR
Well, last week we talked about your
obsession with the families of airline
fatalities, and now we're talking
about your concern over the garbage
problem.

ANN
Yeah, so?

DOCTOR
If you think about it, I think you'll
see that the object of your obsession
is invariably something negative
that you couldn't possibly have any
control over.

ANN
Well, do you think many people run
around thinking about how happy they
feel and how great things are? I
mean, maybe they do, but I doubt
those people are in therapy. Besides,
being happy isn't all that great. My
figure is always at its best when
I'm depressed. The last time I was
really happy I put on twenty-five
pounds. I thought John was going to
have a stroke.

JOHN
(voice over)
It's true, I'm telling you.

INT. LAW OFFICE -- DAY

JOHN MILLANEY, twenty-nine, sits at his desk talking on the
telephone. He is dressed very well, sporting real suspenders
with his striped pinpoint oxford shirt and cotton suit. He
fingers the wedding ring on his left hand.

JOHN
As soon as you've got a ring on your
finger, you start getting serious
attention from the opposite gender.
Seriously, I wish I had Super Bowl
seats for every time I had some filly
just come up and start talking to me
without the slightest provocation.
That never happened before I got
married. Shit, if I'd known that,
I'd have gone out and bought me a
ring when I was eighteen and saved
myself a lot of time and money.

John looks at his watch.

JOHN
Shit, I gotta be someplace.
(quickly)
Look, racquetball Thursday? You're
the coolest.

John presses the intercom button while putting on his jacket.

JOHN
Uh, Janet, re-schedule Kirkland.
Tell him to come in Friday at 1:30.

DOCTOR
(voice over, to Ann)
Are you still keeping these thoughts
from John?

ANN
(voice over)
Yes.

INT. LAW OFFICE BATHROOM -- DAY

John brushes his teeth and combs his hair very carefully.

DOCTOR
(voice over, to Ann)
Are you afraid of his reaction? Of
his finding you silly for thinking
of such things?

ANN
(voice over)
No. I don't know. I haven't told him
about the garbage thing because I'm
pissed off at him right now. He's
letting some old college buddy stay
at our house for a couple of days,
and he didn't even ask me about it.
I mean, I would've said yes, I just
wish he would've asked.

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE-DAY

DOCTOR
What upsets you about that?

ANN
I guess I'm upset because I can't
really justify being upset, I mean,
it's his house, really, he pays the
mortgage.

DOCTOR
But he asked you to quit your job,
and you do have housework.

ANN
Yeah, I know.

DOCTOR
This unexpected visit notwithstanding,
how are things with John?

ANN
(shrugs)
Fine, I guess. Except right now I'm
going through this where I don't
want him to touch me.

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

CYNTHIA BISHOP, Ann's SISTER, opens her door to reveal the
freshly coifed John Millaney. They kiss passionately and
begin to disrobe. Cynthia bears a slight resemblance to Ann,
but is not as overtly attractive. She does, however, have a
definite carnal appeal and air of confidence that Ann lacks.

DOCTOR
(voice over)
When did you begin having this
feeling?

ANN
(voice over)
About a week ago. I don't know what
brought it on, I just started feeling
like I didn't want him to touch me.

DOCTOR
(voice over, to Ann)
Prior to this feeling, were you
comfortable having physical contact
with him?

ANN
(voice over)
Oh, yeah.
(pause)
But see, I've never really been into
sex that much, I mean, I like it and
everything, it just does't freak me
out, I wouldn't miss it, you know?
But anyway, lately we haven't been
doing anything at all. Like I said,
it's not that I miss it, but I'm
curious the way things kind of slacked
off all of a sudden.

John and Cynthia are now having sex.

DOCTOR
(voice over)
Perhaps he senses your hesitance at
being touched.

ANN
(voice over)
But see, he stopped before I got
that feeling, that's why it seems
weird to me. I mean, I'm sure he
wishes I would initiate things once
in awhile, and I would except it
never occurs to me, I'm always
thinking about something else and
then the few times that I have felt
like starting something I was by
myself.

DOCTOR
(voice over)
Did you do anything?

A pause.

ANN
(voice over)
What do you mean?

DOCTOR
(voice over)
Did you masturbate?

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE -- DAY

ANN
(taken aback)
God, no.

DOCTOR
I take it you've never masturbated?

ANN
(slightly uncomfortable)
Well, I kind of tried once. It just
seemed stupid, I kept seeing myself
lying there and it seemed stupid,
and kind of, uh, I don't know, and
then I was wondering if my dead
grandfather could see me doing this,
and it just seemed like a dumb thing
to be doing when we don't know what
to do with all that garbage, you
know?

DOCTOR
So it was recently that you tried
this.

ANN
(exhales, head down)
Well, kind of recently, I guess. But
not too recently.

There is a pause.

ANN
I'm really not up to having a guest
in the house.

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

John and Cynthia are lying in bed, bathed in sweat.

JOHN
I've got to get back to the office.

CYNTHIA
I only get one today? Gee, how
exciting.

John rolls over and begins to put his clothes on.

JOHN
I can't let my lunch hour go on too
long. I've already skipped one
meeting.

CYNTHIA
Don't give me this passive/aggressive
bullshit. If you want to leave, leave.
My life doesn't stop when you walk
out the door, you know what I'm
saying?

John shakes his head.

JOHN
Why don't you just tell me how you
really feel?

John stands and begins putting on his clothes.

JOHN
I have a friend coming in from out
of town, I'll probably be spending
some time with him the next couple
of days.

CYNTHIA
Meaning we'll have to cool it for
awhile, right?

JOHN
Right.

A silent shrug from Cynthia. John is almost completely
dressed.

JOHN
I wish you'd quit that bartending
job.

CYNTHIA
Why?

JOHN
I hate the thought of guys hitting
on you all the time.

CYNTHIA
I can handle it. Besides, the money
is good and some of the guys are
cute. And you are in no position to
be jealous.

JOHN
Who said I was jealous?

CYNTHIA
I did.

John says nothing.

CYNTHIA
You know, I'd like to try your house
sometime. The idea of doing it in my
sister's bed gives me a perverse
thrill.

John thinks about that.

CYNTHIA
I wish I could tell everybody that
Ann's a lousy lay. Beautiful, popular,
Ann Bishop Millaney.

JOHN
Could be risky.

CYNTHIA
Well, maybe I could just start a
rumor, then.

JOHN
No, I mean doing it at my house.

CYNTHIA
Afraid of getting caught?

JOHN
Maybe.

CYNTHIA
You should be. Can I meet this friend
of yours?

JOHN
Cynthia, I don't think you want to,
I mean, you should see the way he
dresses. I really think he's in a
bad way.

CYNTHIA
I'm intrigued.

JOHN
You're intrigued?

CYNTHIA
Sure. Maybe he's the man I'm looking
for. Then I won't have to fuck worried
husbands all the time.

John looks at her for a moment before heading for the door.

JOHN
Bye.

EXT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Graham has parked in the Millaney's driveway. He opens the
trunk, revealing a Sony 8mm Video rig and a single black
duffle bag. He grabs the duffle bag and shuts the trunk.

Graham knocks at the door. He is stubbing out a cigarette
with his beaten tennis shoe when Ann answers the door. She
is unable to hide her surprise at his appearance.

GRAHAM
Ann?

ANN
Yes?

GRAHAM
(extends his hand)
Graham Dalton.

Ann shakes his hand.

GRAHAM
Can I use your bathroom?

Ann withdraws her hand.

ANN
Yes. Yes, come in, please.

Graham moves inside.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Ann closes the door and motions Graham to the rear of the
house.

ANN
Straight back, first door on the
left.

Graham heads for the bathroom. Ann heads for the phone. She
dials John's office.

VOICE ON PHONE
Forman, Brent, and Millaney.

ANN
John Millaney, please. This is his
wife.

Graham exits the bathroom. Ann quickly hangs up the phone.

ANN
That was quick.

GRAHAM
False alarm.

ANN
Oh. Well, please sit down.

Graham sits, his manner pleasantly animated. He gets his
Gitanes from inside his scuffed black leather jacket and
looks around for an ashtray. Ann swallows uncomfortably.

ANN
We... don't usually let people smoke
in the house. We have a patio if you --

GRAHAM
Oh, no problem. It can wait.

A moment of silence. Graham looks at Ann directly. It is not
a challenging stare, he's just trying to ascertain what kind
of person she is. Ann, to her credit, somehow meets his gaze.

Something subtle passes between them.

ANN
(looks at duffle bag)
Do you have other things?

GRAHAM
Yes.
(pause)
Oh, you mean to bring in! No. Yes, I
have some other things, no, I don't
need to bring them in. This is all I
need to stay here.

ANN
Oh.

Graham smiles. He has an unusual face, a face that fluctuates
between remarkably handsome and just plain strange.

GRAHAM
Have you ever been on television?

ANN
Television?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
No. Why?

GRAHAM
(shrugs)
Curious.

The central air-conditioning switches on. Ann smiles.

ANN
Graham is an unusual name.

GRAHAM
Yeah, I guess it is. My mother is a
complete Anglophile, anything British
makes her drool like a baby. She
probably heard the name in some movie.
She's a prisoner of public television
now.

ANN
Oh, uh-huh.

GRAHAM
Are you uncomfortable with my
appearance?

ANN
(downplaying)
No, I think you look... fine.

GRAHAM
(smiles)
Oh. Well, maybe I'm uncomfortable
with my appearance. I feel a little
out of place in these surroundings.

ANN
Well...

GRAHAM
I used to take great pleasure in
that, being purposefully different,
rubbing people's noses in it. Didn't
you do that when you were younger?

ANN
(thinks)
No, not really.

GRAHAM
Oh. Well, I did. I was in a band
once, and the music was always
secondary to just flat out offending
as many people as possible.

ANN
You play an instrument?

GRAHAM
No, I was in charge of kind of
standing at the microphone and
reciting these really depressing
lyrics in a monotone. The whole thing
was really... irrelevant. How do you
like being married?

ANN
(caught slightly off
guard)
Oh, I like it. I like it very much.

GRAHAM
What about it do you like? I'm not
being critical, I'd really like to
know.

ANN
Well... well, the cliché about the
security of it, that's really true.
We own a house, and I really like
that, you know? And I like that John
was just made junior partner, so he
has a steady job and he's not some...

Ann looks at Graham and stops. He smiles again.

ANN
...free-lance. You know.

GRAHAM
Yes. So you feel security, stability.
Like things are going to last awhile.

ANN
Oh, definitely. I mean, just this
past year has gone by like phew! I
hardly even knew it passed.

GRAHAM
Did you know that if you shut someone
up in a room, and the only clock he
has reference to runs two hours slow
for every twenty-four, that his body
will eventually adjust to that
schedule? Simply because the mind
honestly perceives that twenty-six
hours are twenty-four, the body
follows. And then there are sections
of time. Your life can be broken
down into the sections of time that
formed your personality (if you have
one). For instance, when I was twelve,
I had an eleven minute conversation
with my father that to this day
defines our relationship. Now, I'm
not saying that everything happened
in that specific section of time,
but the events of my childhood
involving my father led up to, and
then were crystallized in, that eleven
minutes.

Ann is fascinated, if a bit overwhelmed.

ANN
Oh, uh-huh.

GRAHAM
(smiles)
Anyway, I think the mind is very
flexible as far as time is concerned.

ANN
You mean like "time flies"?

GRAHAM
Exactly. I would say the fact that
you feel the first year of your
marriage has gone by quickly means
lots of things. Or could mean lots
of things.

ANN
How long has it been since you've
seen John?

GRAHAM
Nine years.

ANN
Nine years?

GRAHAM
Yes. I was surprised that he accepted
when I asked if I could stay here
until I found a place.

ANN
Why? Didn't you know him well?

GRAHAM
I knew him very well. We were
extremely close until I dropped out.

A pause.

ANN
Why'd you drop out?

GRAHAM
Oh, lots of reasons, most of them
boring. But, up until I dropped out,
John and I were... very much alike.

ANN
That's hard to believe. The two of
you seem so different.

GRAHAM
I would imagine that we are, now. I
think I'm ready to use the bathroom,
finally.

Graham gets up and heads for the toilet. Ann watches him go,
a bemused smile on her face. After she hears the door close,
she can't resist the impulse to take a closer look at Graham's
bag.

IN THE BATHROOM, Graham pokes around, looking through the
medicine cabinet and sniffing towels.

JOHN
(voice over)
Call the cops.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

John, Ann and Graham are eating dinner.

JOHN
(to Graham)
That's the first thing that ran
through my mind when I saw you. I
thought this is not the same man
that rode the unicycle naked through
the homecoming parade.

ANN
(to Graham)
You did that?

GRAHAM
Everybody has a past.

JOHN
(smiles at Graham)
What do you think the Greeks would
make of that outfit you're wearing?

GRAHAM
A bonfire, probably.

John takes a sip of Chivas.

GRAHAM
(to Ann)
This food is excellent.

ANN
Thank you.

JOHN
Yeah, it's not bad. Usually Ann has
some serious salt action going. I
keep telling her, you can always add
more if you want, but you can't take
it out.

GRAHAM
(to Ann)
You have family here also?

ANN
(nods, chewing)
Mother, father, sister.

GRAHAM
Sister older or younger?

ANN
Younger.

John takes a large swig of Chivas.

GRAHAM
Are you close?

Graham sees Ann and John exchange looks.

GRAHAM
I'm sorry. Am I prying again?

JOHN
You were prying before?

GRAHAM
Yes, this afternoon. I was grilling
Ann about your marriage this
afternoon.

JOHN
(smiles)
Really. How'd it go?

GRAHAM
She held up very well.

Ann laughs.

GRAHAM
(to Ann)
So I was asking about your sister.

Ann's smile fades. John resumes eating.

ANN
Oh, we get along okay. She's just
very... she's an extrovert. I think
she's loud. She probably wouldn't
agree. Definitely wouldn't agree.

JOHN
(to Graham)
Are you going to see Elizabeth while
you're here?

An almost imperceptible reaction by Graham.

GRAHAM
I don't know.

ANN
(interested)
Who's Elizabeth?

JOHN
Girl Graham dated. Still lives here,
far as I know.

Graham eats in silence.

ANN
Graham and I were talking about
apartments and I told him to check
the Garden District, there are some
nice little places there, garage
apartments and stuff.

JOHN
(to Graham)
Stay away from the Garden District.
Serious crime. I don't know what
kind of place you're looking for,
but there are a lot of studio-type
apartments available elsewhere.

GRAHAM
I wish I didn't have to live
someplace.

JOHN
(laughs)
What do you mean?

Graham thinks a moment, then puts his keyring with its single
key onto the table.

GRAHAM
Well, see, right now I have this one
key, and I really like that.
Everything I own is in my car. If I
get an apartment, that's two keys.
If I get a job, maybe I have to open
and close once in awhile, that's
more keys. Or I buy some stuff and
I'm worried about getting ripped
off, so I get some locks, and that's
more keys. I just really like having
the one key. It's clean, you know?

Graham looks at the keyring before returning it to his pocket.

JOHN
Get rid of the car when you get your
apartment, then you'll still have
one key.

GRAHAM
I like having the car, the car is
important.

JOHN
Especially if you want to leave
someplace in a hurry.

GRAHAM
Or go someplace in a hurry.

Ann takes her plate into the kitchen.

JOHN
(smiles at Graham)
Do you pay taxes?

Graham also stands, empty plate in hand.

GRAHAM
Do I pay taxes? Of course I pay taxes,
only a liar doesn't pay taxes, I'm
not a liar. A liar is the second
lowest form of human being.

ANN
(from the kitchen)
What's the first?

GRAHAM
Lawyers.

John smiles, thinking. Graham follows Ann into the kitchen.

John shouts after them.

JOHN
Hey, Ann, why don't you go with Graham
to hunt for apartments? Show him how
the city has changed.

Ann looks at Graham.

ANN
Would you mind?

GRAHAM
No.

ANN
(shouts back to John)
Okay, I will!!

John, sitting at the table and now toying with his keyring,
nods.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

Everyone but Ann is asleep. She gets up from her bed and
sneaks quietly into the guest bedroom where Graham is staying.
She walks cautiously up to his bed to watch him as he sleeps.

Moonlight caresses his face as he breathes peacefully.
Exhaling, he turns over slowly, his back to Ann.

She picks up his jacket from beside the bed and feels the
surface. She brings the jacket to her nose, inhaling his
presence. She then sets the jacket down.

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

The phone rings. Cynthia answers.

CYNTHIA
Hello.

JOHN
Cynthia. John. Meet me at my house
in exactly one hour.

CYNTHIA
You are scum. I'll be there.

INT. VACANT APARTMENT-DAY

Graham and Ann walk around the room, their footfalls heavy
on the hardwood floors. MR. MILLER, the landlord, stands
nearby.

He looks fairly interested in Ann.

MR. MILLER
Plenty of room for two people.

GRAHAM
It'll just be me.

MR. MILLER
Student?

GRAHAM
No.
(pause)
You said three-fifty?

MR. MILLER
Plus first and last month deposit.

GRAHAM
Will you lease month-to-month?

MR. MILLER
Not for three-fifty.

GRAHAM
How about for five hundred?

Mr. Miller looks at Ann, then back at Graham.

MR. MILLER
That I can do.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Cynthia lets herself in. She looks around.

CYNTHIA
John?

JOHN
(offscreen)
In here!!

Cynthia walks to the bedroom, where John lies naked on the
bed.

She smiles, kicking off her shoes.

CYNTHIA
Ain't you a picture.

Cynthia begins taking her clothes off. She places her diamond
stud earring in her jacket pocket, and then drops the jacket
on the floor. She moves onto the bed with John.

ANN
(voice over)
Maybe you'll understand this, because
you know John, but he confuses me
sometimes.

GRAHAM
(voice over)
How do you mean?

INT. CAFÉ - DAY

Graham and Ann are having lunch. Ann looks to have had a lot
of wine. Graham drinks club soda with a twist.

ANN
It's hard to explain. It's like...
John treats everybody the same, you
know? I mean, he acts just as excited
about seeing somebody he hardly knows
as he does when he sees me. And so I
feel like, what's different about
me, if I'm treated exactly the same
as some acquaintance? If I don't
like somebody, I don't act like I
do. I guess that's why a lot of people
think I'm a bitch.

She takes a sip of wine.

GRAHAM
Yeah, I know. I mean, I'm not saying
I know people think you're a bitch,
I'm saying I know what you mean. And
I don't even know that people think
you're a bitch. Do they?

ANN
I feel like they do.

GRAHAM
Hmm. Well, maybe you are. Really, I
wouldn't pay much attention.

Ann smiles.

GRAHAM
I know that I just don't feel a
connection with very many people, so
I don't waste time with people I
don't feel one with.

ANN
Right, right. I don't feel connected
to many people, either. Other than
John.

Graham nods.

ANN
Can I tell you something personal? I
feel like I can. It's something I
couldn't tell John. Or wouldn't,
anyway.

GRAHAM
It's up to you. But I warn you, if
you tell me something personal, I
might do the same.

ANN
Okay. I think... I think sex is
overrated. I think people place way
too much importance on it. And I
think that stuff about women wanting
it just as bad is crap. I m not saying
women don't want it, I just don't
think they want it for the reason
men think they do.
(smiles)
I'm getting confused.

Graham smiles.

ANN
Do you understand what I'm trying to
say?

GRAHAM
I think so. I remember reading
somewhere that men learn to love
what they're attracted to, whereas
women become more and more attracted
to the person they love.

ANN
Yes! Yes! I think that's very true.
Very.

Graham watches Ann take a sip of wine.

GRAHAM
So what about kids?

ANN
Kids? What about them?

GRAHAM
Do you want them?

ANN
Yeah, actually, I do. But John
doesn't. At least not right now.

GRAHAM
Why is that?

ANN
I don't know, he just said he wants
to wait. I quit asking.

Graham nods.

ANN
So what's your personal thing? Are
you really going to tell me something
personal?

GRAHAM
Do you want me to?

ANN
As long as it's not... gross, you
know? Like some scar or something.
It has to be like mine, like something
about you.

GRAHAM
Agreed.

Graham takes a sip of club soda.

GRAHAM
I'm impotent.

Ann looks at him closely.

ANN
You're what?

GRAHAM
Impotent.

ANN
You are?

GRAHAM
Well, let me put it this way: I cannot
achieve an erection while in the
presence of another person. So, for
all practical purposes, I am impotent.

Ann takes a large sip of wine. Graham lights a cigarette.

ANN
Does it bother you?

GRAHAM
(exhales)
Not usually. I mean, honestly, I
haven't known many guys that could
think straight with an erection, so
I feel I'm way ahead of the game as
far as being clear-headed goes.

ANN
Well... are you self-conscious about
it?

GRAHAM
I am self-conscious, but not in the
same way that you are. You have got
to be the most attractive self-
conscious person I've ever seen.

ANN
Why do you say I'm self-conscious?

GRAHAM
Well, I've been watching you. I've
watched you eat, I've watched you
speak, I've watched the way you move,
and I see somebody who is extremely
conscious of being looked at. I think
you really believe that people are
looking at you all the time. And you
know what?

ANN
What?

GRAHAM
They are looking at you. Ann, you
are truly breathtaking. I don't know
if you understand how your appearance
can affect people. Men want to possess
you, women wish they looked like
you. And those that don't or can't
resent you. And the fact that you're
a nice person just makes it worse.

ANN
(thinks)
My therapist said that --

GRAHAM
You're in therapy?

ANN
Aren't you?

GRAHAM
Hah! No, I'm not. Actually, I used
to be, but the therapist I had was
really ineffectual in helping me
deal with my problems. Of course, I
lied to him constantly, so I guess I
can't hold him totally responsible...

ANN
So you don't believe in therapy?

GRAHAM
I believe in it for some people. I
mean, for me it was silly, I was
confused going in. So I just formed
my own personal theory that you should
never take advice from someone of
the opposite sex that doesn't know
you intimately.

ANN
Well, my therapist knows me
intimately.

GRAHAM
(surprised)
You had sex with you therapist?

ANN
Of course not.

GRAHAM
Oh, see, I meant someone you've had
sex with. That's part of the theory.

ANN
Excuse me for asking, but how would
you know?

GRAHAM
(smiles)
Well, I wasn't always impotent.

Ann takes another sip of wine and thinks for a moment.

ANN
Now, you said never take advice from
someone that you don't know
intimately, right?

GRAHAM
Basically, yes.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Cynthia is leaving the house. She gives John a big kiss.

ANN
(voice over)
So since I've never had sex with
you, by your own advice I shouldn't
accept your advice.

GRAHAM
(voice over)
That's correct.
(pause)
Bit of a dilemma, isn't it?

Cynthia is not wearing her diamond stud earring.

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE -- DAY

ANN
Well, I don't know. The week started
off okay, but then I was outside
watering the plants, and I started
feeling dizzy from the heat and that
got me thinking about the Greenhouse
Effect, so I went inside and turned
on the air-conditioner full blast,
and that made me feel a little better
until I started thinking about radon
leakage coming up through the floor,
and --

DOCTOR
Radon leakage?

ANN
Yes, it's this radioactive gas in
the ground, and houses kind of act
like magnets to pull it up, and --
you've never heard of this?

DOCTOR
No, I haven't.

ANN
Well, the cumulative effect is not
good, let me tell you.
(pause)
I knew I shouldn't have watered those
plants.

DOCTOR
Did you confront John about the
visitor?

ANN
What visitor?

DOCTOR
The friend of John's that was staying
at your house.

ANN
Oh, Graham. No, I didn't talk to him
about that. Actually, that turned
out to be pretty interesting. I
expected Graham to be this... well,
like John, you know? I mean, he said
they had gone to school together, so
I was expecting lots of stories about
getting drunk and secret handshakes
and stuff. But he turned out to be
this... this kind of character, I
mean, he's kind of arty but okay,
you know?

DOCTOR
Is he still at your house?

ANN
No, he left last week.

DOCTOR
Did you find him attractive?

ANN
What do you mean, like physically?

DOCTOR
Let me rephrase. Were you attracted
to him?

ANN
(thinks)
I guess, but not because of the way
he looked or anything. He's just so
different, somebody new to have a
conversation with. I'm just tired of
talking to other couples about whether
or not they're going to buy the
station wagon, you know? It's just
boring. I don't know, he was just
different. And he's really on about
truth a lot, being honest, and I
like that, I felt comfortable around
him.
(pause)
After he left I had a dream that he
signed a lease to rent our guest
room.

CYNTHIA
(voice over)
So where's he from?

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Ann stands watching Cynthia get dressed for work.

ANN
I don't know. He went to school here,
then he was in New York for awhile,
then Philadelphia, and then just
kind of travelling around.

CYNTHIA
Must be nice. So, what's he like, is
he like John?

ANN
No, not at all. Actually, I don't
think John likes him much anymore.
He said he thought Graham had gotten
strange.

A pause.

CYNTHIA
Is he? Strange, I mean?

ANN
Not really. Maybe if I just saw him
on the street I'd have said that,
but after talking to him... he's
just kind of... I don't know, unusual.

CYNTHIA
Uh-huh. So what's he look like?

ANN
Why?

CYNTHIA
I just want to know what he looks
like, is all.

ANN
Why, so you can go after him?

CYNTHIA
Jesus, Ann, get a life. I just asked
what he looked like.

Ann says nothing.

CYNTHIA
Besides, even if I decided to fuck
his brains out, what business is
that of yours?

ANN
Do you have to say that?

CYNTHIA
What?

ANN
You know what. You say it just to
irritate me.

CYNTHIA
I say it because it's descriptive.

ANN
Well, he doesn't strike me as the
kind of person that would go in for
that sort of thing, anyway.

CYNTHIA
Ann, you always underestimate me.

ANN
Well, I wonder why.

CYNTHIA
I think you're afraid to put the two
of us in the same room together. I
think you're afraid he'll be
undeniably drawn to me.

ANN
Oh, for God's sake. Really, Cynthia,
really, I don't think he's your type.

CYNTHIA
"My type"? What is this bullshit?
How would you know what "my type"
is?

ANN
I have a pretty good idea.

CYNTHIA
Ann, you don't have a clue. Look, I
don't even know why we're discussing
this, I'll just call him myself.

ANN
He doesn't have a phone.

CYNTHIA
Well, I'll call him when he does.

ANN
But he won't.

CYNTHIA
What are you talking about?

ANN
He's not getting a phone, he doesn't
like talking on the phone.

CYNTHIA
Oh, please. Okay, so give me the Zen
master's address, I'll think of a
reason to stop by.

ANN
Let me talk to him first.

CYNTHIA
Why? Just give me the address, you
won't even have to be involved.

ANN
I don't feel right just giving you
the address so that you can go over
there and...

CYNTHIA
And what?

ANN
And... do whatever it is you do.

Cynthia laughs loudly. Ann, not happy, watches her dig through
the jewelry box.

ANN
Lose something?

CYNTHIA
That goddam diamond stud earring
that cost me a fucking fortune.

ANN
Are you getting Mom something for
her birthday?

CYNTHIA
I don't know, I'll get her a card or
something.

ANN
A card? For her fiftieth birthday?

CYNTHIA
What's wrong with that?

ANN
Don't you think she deserves a little
more than a card? I mean, the woman
gave birth to you. It's her fiftieth
birthday --

CYNTHIA
Will you stop? Jesus.

ANN
I just thought it might --

CYNTHIA
Okay, Ann, okay. How about this: you
buy her something nice, and I'll pay
for half. All right?

ANN
Fine.

CYNTHIA
Good. Now, if you'll pardon me, I
have to go to work.

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE -- DAY

ANN
I was thinking maybe I shouldn't be
in therapy anymore.

DOCTOR
What brought this on?

ANN
I've been thinking about it for
awhile, and then I was talking to
somebody who kind of put things in
perspective for me.

DOCTOR
(smiles)
I thought that's what I did. Who was
it that you talked to?

ANN
That guy Graham I told you about. He
said taking advice from someone you
don't know intimately was... well,
he said a lot of stuff.

The Doctor exhales, thinking for a moment.

DOCTOR
Ann, in life one has to be aware of
hidden agendas.
(pause)
Did it occur to you that Graham may
have his own reasons for not wanting
you to be in therapy?

ANN
What do you mean? I don't understand.

DOCTOR
It's possible that Graham has hidden
motives for disliking therapy and/or
therapists. Perhaps he has problems
of his own that he is unwilling to
deal with, and he would like to see
other people, you for instance, wallow
in their situation just as he does.
Do you think that's possible?

ANN
I guess.

DOCTOR
You understand that you are free to
leave therapy at any time?

ANN
Yes.

DOCTOR
That you are under no obligation to
me?

ANN
Yes.

DOCTOR
Do you want to leave therapy?

ANN
Not really.

DOCTOR
Do you feel there is more progress
to be made?

ANN
Yes.

DOCTOR
I'm glad you feel that way, because
I feel that way, too.

ANN
But you don't have hidden motives
for feeling that way, right?

The Doctor laughs. Ann does not laugh with him.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

On a television monitor we see images originating from an
8mm Video deck. Graham sits naked in a sheet-covered chair
facing the screen. He watches the tape, which is footage of
himself interviewing a girl about her sexual preferences.
The photography on the tape is hand-held, relentless. As the
questions get more detailed, Graham becomes more aroused.

There is a knock on Graham's door. He calmly shuts off the
videotape player and stands, wrapping the sheet around
himself.

GRAHAM
It's open.

Graham walks into the bedroom to put on some clothes. Ann
opens the door and walks into the apartment.

ANN
Hi!

GRAHAM
(off)
Ann. Hello.

ANN
Are you in the middle of something?

GRAHAM
(off)
Nothing I can't finish later.

ANN
(looks)
I just wanted to see how the place
looked furnished.

GRAHAM
(Off)
Not much to see, I'm afraid. I'm
sort of cultivating a minimalist
vibe.

ANN
Somehow I imagined books. I thought
you would have like a whole lot of
books and be reading all the time.

Graham enters.

GRAHAM
I do read a lot. But I check
everything out of the library.

Graham picks up an Anais Nin diary and opens it to show Ann
the library sleeve inside.

GRAHAM
Cheaper that way. And cuts down on
the clutter.

Ann walks to the table where the video gear is set up. Graham
watches her closely. She looks into a large box of 8mm
videotapes. On the side of each tape is a label. The labels
look like this:

DONNA / 11 DEC 86 / 1:07:36

And so on. There are thirty or forty tapes, total.

ANN
What are these?

GRAHAM
Videotapes.

ANN
(smiles)
I can see that. What are they?

Graham exhales.

GRAHAM
It's a personal project I'm working
on.

ANN
What kind of personal project?

GRAHAM
Oh, just a personal project like
anyone else's personal project. Mine's
just a little more personal.

ANN
Who's Donna?

GRAHAM
Donna?

ANN
Donna. On this tape it says "Donna".

GRAHAM
(thinking)
Donna was a girl I knew in Florida.

ANN
You went out with her?

GRAHAM
Not really.

Ann looks in the box again.

ANN
How come all these are girl's names?

Graham thinks for a moment.

GRAHAM
Because I enjoy interviewing women
more than men.

ANN
All of these are interviews?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
Can we look at one?

GRAHAM
No.

ANN
Why not?

GRAHAM
Because I promised each subject that
no one would look at the tape except
me.

Ann looks at Graham for a long moment, then back at the tapes.

ANN
What... what are these interviews
about?

GRAHAM
The... interviews are about sex,
Ann.

ANN
About sex?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
What about sex?

GRAHAM
Everything about sex.

ANN
Like what?

GRAHAM
Like what they've done, what they
do, what they don't do, what they
want to do but are afraid to ask
for, what they won't do even if asked.
Anything I can think of.

ANN
You just ask them questions?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
And they just answer them?

GRAHAM
Mostly. Sometimes they do things.

ANN
To you?

GRAHAM
No, not to me, for me, for the camera.

ANN
(stunned)
I don't... why... why do you do this?

GRAHAM
I'm sorry this came up.

ANN
This is just... so...

GRAHAM
Maybe you want to go.

ANN
Yes, I do.

Ann nods and absently heads for the door. She gives Graham a
puzzled look before leaving.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Ann is talking to Cynthia on the telephone.

ANN
(still shaken)
I don't... he doesn't want you to
come over.

CYNTHIA
What do you mean he doesn't want me
to come over? Did you tell him about
me?

ANN
No, I didn't.

CYNTHIA
Why not?

ANN
Because I never got around to it.

CYNTHIA
Well, why?

ANN
Because. Cynthia, look, John was
right. Graham is strange. Very
strange. You don't want to get
involved with him.

CYNTHIA
What the hell happened over there?
Did he make a pass at you?

ANN
No!

CYNTHIA
Then what's the story, what's this
"strange" bullshit all of a sudden?
Is he drowning puppies, or what?

ANN
No, it's nothing like that.

CYNTHIA
Well, what? Is he dangerous?

ANN
No, he's not dangerous. Not
physically.

CYNTHIA
Well, what, then?

ANN
I don't want to talk about it.

CYNTHIA
Then why'd you call me?

ANN
I don't know.

Ann hangs up.

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Cynthia gets out of the shower. The phone rings. She wraps
herself in a towel and lifts the receiver.

CYNTHIA
Hello.

JOHN
Cynthia. John.

CYNTHIA
Not today. I've got other plans.

JOHN
Oh.
(pause)
Well, when, then?

CYNTHIA
How about inviting me over to dinner?

JOHN
You know what I mean.

CYNTHIA
Yeah, I know what you mean.

Cynthia hangs up the phone.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Graham sits smoking a cigarette. There is a knock at his
door.

GRAHAM
It's open.

Cynthia enters. Graham looks up at her.

GRAHAM
Who are you?

CYNTHIA
I'm Cynthia Bishop.

GRAHAM
Do I know you?

CYNTHIA
I'm Ann Millaney's sister.

GRAHAM
The extrovert.

CYNTHIA
(smiles)
She must have been in a good mood
when she said that. She usually calls
me loud.

GRAHAM
She called you that, too. May I ask
why you're here?

CYNTHIA
You want me to leave?

GRAHAM
I just want to know why you're here.

CYNTHIA
Well, like I said, Ann is my sister.
Sisters talk. You can imagine the
rest.

GRAHAM
No, I really can't. I find it healthy
never to characterize people I don't
know or conversations I haven't heard.
I don't know what you and your sister
discussed about me or anything else.
Last time I saw Ann she left here
very... confused, I would say. And
upset.

CYNTHIA
She still is.

GRAHAM
And are you here to berate me for
making her that way?

CYNTHIA
Nope.

GRAHAM
She didn't tell you why she was upset?

CYNTHIA
Nope.

GRAHAM
She didn't give you my address?

CYNTHIA
Nope.

GRAHAM
How did you find me?

CYNTHIA
I, uh, know a guy at the power
company.

GRAHAM
I don't understand. Why did you want
to come here? I mean, I can't imagine
Ann painted a very flattering portrait
of me.

CYNTHIA
Well, I don't really listen to her
when it comes to men. I mean, look
at John, for crissake. Oh, you went
to school with him didn't you? You're
probably friends or something.

GRAHAM
Nope. I think the man is a liar.

CYNTHIA
(smiles)
I think you're right. So come on, I
came all the way over here to find
out what got Ann so spooked, tell me
what happened.

GRAHAM
(smiles)
Spooked.

He motions to the box of videotapes.

GRAHAM
That box of tapes is what got Ann so
"spooked".

Cynthia goes over to the box and looks inside for a long
moment, studying the labels.

CYNTHIA
Oh, okay. I think I get it.

GRAHAM
What do you get?

CYNTHIA
Well, they must be something sexual,
because Ann gets freaked out by that
shit. Are these tapes of you having
sex with these girls or something?

GRAHAM
Not exactly.

CYNTHIA
Well, either you are or you aren't.
Which is it?

GRAHAM
Why don't you let me tape you?

CYNTHIA
Doing what?

GRAHAM
Talking.

CYNTHIA
About what?

GRAHAM
Sex. Your sexual history, your sexual
preferences.

CYNTHIA
What makes you think I'd discuss
that with you?

GRAHAM
Nothing.

CYNTHIA
You just want to ask me questions?

GRAHAM
I just want to ask you questions.

CYNTHIA
And that's all?

GRAHAM
That's all.

CYNTHIA
(a crooked smile)
Is this how you get off or something?
Taping women talking about their
sexual experiences?

GRAHAM
Yes.

CYNTHIA
Would anybody else see the tape?

GRAHAM
Absolutely not. They are for my
private use only.

CYNTHIA
How do we start?

GRAHAM
I turn on the camera. You start
talking.

CYNTHIA
And you ask questions, right?

GRAHAM
Yes.

CYNTHIA
How long will it take?

GRAHAM
That depends on you. One woman only
used three minutes. Another filled
up three two hour tapes.

CYNTHIA
Can I see some of the other tapes to
get an idea of what --

GRAHAM
No.

CYNTHIA
(thinks)
Do I sit or stand?

GRAHAM
Whichever you prefer.

CYNTHIA
I'd rather sit. Are you ready?

GRAHAM
Just a moment.

Graham grabs his 8mm Video camera, puts in a new tape, and
turns it on.

GRAHAM
I am now recording. Tell me your
name.

CYNTHIA
Cynthia Patrice Bishop.

GRAHAM
Describe for me your first sexual
experience.

CYNTHIA
My first sexual experience or the
first time I had intercourse?

GRAHAM
Your first sexual experience.

CYNTHIA
(thinks)
I was... eight years old. Michael
Green, who was also eight, asked if
he could watch me take a pee. I said
he could if I could watch him take
one, too. He said okay, and then we
went into the woods behind our house.
I got this feeling he was chickening
out because he kept saying, "Ladies
first!" So I pulled down my underpants
and urinated, and he ran away before
I even finished.

GRAHAM
Was it ever a topic of conversation
between the two of you afterward?

CYNTHIA
No. He kind of avoided me for the
rest of the summer, and then his
family moved away. To Cleveland,
actually.

GRAHAM
How unfortunate. So when did you
finally get to see a penis?

CYNTHIA
When I was fourteen.

GRAHAM
Live, or in a photograph or film of
some sort?

CYNTHIA
Very much live.

GRAHAM
What did you think? Did it look like
you expected?

CYNTHIA
Not really. I didn't picture it with
veins or ridges or anything, I thought
it would be smooth, like a test tube.

GRAHAM
Were you disappointed?

CYNTHIA
No. If anything, after I looked at
it awhile, it got more interesting.
It had character, you know?

GRAHAM
What about when you touched it? What
did you expect it to feel like, and
then what did it really feel like?

CYNTHIA
It was warmer than I thought it would
be, and the skin was softer than it
looked. It's weird. Thinking about
it now, the organ itself seemed like
a separate thing, a separate entity
to me. I mean, after he pulled it
out and I could look at it and touch
it, I completely forgot that there
was a guy attached to it. I remember
literally being startled when the
guy spoke to me.

GRAHAM
What did he say?

CYNTHIA
He said that my hand felt good.

GRAHAM
Then what happened?

CYNTHIA
Then I started moving my hand, and
then he stopped talking.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Cynthia, adjusting her clothes, opens the door to leave. She
looks very aroused. She and Graham do not speak or touch.

INT. LAW OFFICES -- DAY

John Millaney picks up a telephone and presses a blinking
button.

JOHN
John Millaney.

CYNTHIA
I want to see you.

JOHN
When?

CYNTHIA
Right now.

JOHN
Jesus, I don't know if I can get
away. I've got a client waiting. I'd
have to do some heavy duty juggling.

CYNTHIA
Then get those balls in the air and
get your butt over here.

She hangs up. John thinks a moment, then hits his intercom
button.

JOHN
Janet, re-schedule Kirkland, see if
he can come in Friday. Smooth things
out, tell him an emergency came up.
I'll slip out the back.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Graham watches Cynthia's tape, becoming excited.

CYNTHIA
(voice on tape)
Would you like me to take my pants
off?

GRAHAM
(voice on tape)
If you wish.
(pause)
You're not wearing any underwear.

CYNTHIA
(voice on tape)
Do you like the way I look?

GRAHAM
(voice on tape)
Yes.

CYNTHIA
(voice On tape)
Do you think I'm pretty?

GRAHAM
(voice on tape)
Yes.

CYNTHIA
(voice on tape)
Prettier than Ann?

GRAHAM
(voice on tape)
Different.

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Cynthia and John are having sex.

CYNTHIA
(to Graham, voice on
tape)
John doesn't have sex with Ann
anymore.

GRAHAM
(voice On tape)
Is that what he tells you?

CYNTHIA
(voice on tape)
He doesn't have to tell me.

Cynthia has an intense orgasm. She rolls off of John,
sweating.

JOHN
Jesus Christ. You are on fire today.

Cynthia smiles.

CYNTHIA
Yes. You can go now.

DOCTOR
(voice over)
If you won't talk to me, I can't
help you.

A moment of silence. John is starting to put his clothes on.

Cynthia lies in bed, her eyes closed, her face serene.

ANN
(voice over)
I hate my sister.

INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE -- DAY

DOCTOR
Why?

ANN
(rambling)
Because all she thinks about are
these guys she's after and I just
hate her she's such a little slut I
thought that in high school and I
think that now. Why do people have
to be so obsessed with sex all what's
the big damn deal? I mean, it's okay
and everything, but I don't understand
when people let it control them,
control their lives, why do they do
that?

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

Ann lies awake in bed beside John, who is sound asleep.

DOCTOR
(voice over)
There are many things that can exert
control over one's life, good and
bad. Religion, greed, philanthropy,
drugs.

ANN
(voice over)
I know, but this... I just feel like
everybody I know right now is obsessed
with sex.

Ann looks over at John. She slowly reaches under the covers
and grasps his penis. Without waking, he rolls over and turns
his back to her. She returns to looking at the ceiling.

ANN
(voice over)
Except John, I guess.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Ann is talking to Cynthia on the phone. Ann looks very morose.

CYNTHIA
He just asked me questions.

ANN
What kinds of questions?

CYNTHIA
Questions about sex.

ANN
Well, like what did he ask, exactly?

A pause.

CYNTHIA
Well, like, I don't want to tell
you, exactly.

ANN
Oh, so you'll let a total stranger
record your sexual life on tape, but
you won't tell your own sister?

CYNTHIA
Apparently.

ANN
Did he ask you to take your clothes
off?

CYTNHIA
Did he ask me to take my clothes
off? No, he didn't.

ANN
Did you take your clothes off?

CYNTHIA
Yes, I did.

ANN
(floored)
Cynthia!

CYNTHIA
What!?

ANN
Why did you do that?

CYNTHIA
Because I wanted to.

ANN
But why did you want to?

CYNTHIA
I wanted him to see me.

ANN
Cynthia, who knows where that tape
may end up? He could be... bouncing
it off some satellite or something.
Some horny old men in South America
or something could be watching it.

CYNTHIA
He wouldn't do that.

ANN
You don't know that for sure.

CYNTHIA
Well, it's too late now, isn't it?

ANN
Did he touch you?

CYNTHIA
No, but I did.

ANN
You touched him?

CYTNHIA
No, I touched me.

ANN
Wait a minute. Do you mean... don't
tell me you... in front of him.

CYNTHIA
In front of him, Ann, yes.

ANN
(serious)
You are in trouble.

CYNTHIA
(laughs)
Listen to you!! You sound like Mom.
What are you talking about?

ANN
(outraged)
I can't believe you did that!!

CYNTHIA
Why?

ANN
I mean, I couldn't do that in front
of John, even.

CYNTHIA
You couldn't do it, period.

ANN
You know what I mean, you don't even
know him!

CYNTHIA
I feel like I do.

ANN
That doesn't mean you do. You can't
possibly trust him, he's... perverted.

CYNTHIA
He's harmless. He just sits around
and looks at these tapes. What's the
big deal?

ANN
So he's got this catalogue of women
touching themselves? That doesn't
make you feel weird?

CYNTHIA
No. I don't think they all did what
I did.

ANN
You are in serious trouble.

CYNTHIA
Ann, I don't understand why this
freaks you out so much. You didn't
do it, I did, and if it doesn't bother
me, why should it bother you?

ANN
I don't want to discuss it.

CYNTHIA
Then why do you keep asking about
it?

INT. LOUNGE -- DAY

A sparse daytime crowd. Cynthia serves a beer to some DUDE.

He puts the money down on the bar and looks at her.

DUDE
(as Marlon Brando)
Are you an assassin?

CYTNHIA
Excuse me?

DUDE
(still Brando)
You're an errand boy... sent by
grocery clerks... to collect a bill.

Ann enters the lounge, carrying a package.

DUDE
(to Cynthia)
Brando, it's Brando, come on.

CYNTHIA
It's great. Pardon me.

Cynthia moves down the bar to meet Ann.

ANN
I wish you'd get an answering machine.

CYTNHIA
There's a phone here.

ANN
It was busy.

Ann opens the package, revealing a lovely sun dress.

ANN
Here it is.

CYNTHIA
What is it?

ANN
It's a sun dress.

CYNTHIA
It looks like a tablecloth.

ANN
It does not.

CYTNHIA
Well, why would she want a sun dress?
She's got spots on her shoulders and
varicose veins.

ANN
So will you, someday.

CYNTHIA
Yeah, and when I do, I won't be
wearing sun dresses.

The lounge phone rings.

ANN
I was just trying to --

CYNTHIA
Hold on.

Cynthia walks to the other end of the bar to answer the phone.

The Dude watches her pass. Then he turns to Ann and gives
her the once-over. He spots the present.

DUDE
Nice dress.

Ann says nothing.

DUDE
Wanna hear my Walter Matthau? You'll
love this.
(as Matthau)
"Feeelix, what are you, craaazee?"
(back to normal)
Pretty good, huh?

Cynthia picks up the phone.

CYNTHIA
Hello.

JOHN
Cynthia. John.

CYNTHIA
Well, this is timely. Your wife is
here, would you like to speak to
her?

JOHN
She's there? What's she doing there?

CYTNHIA
She came by to show me a present
that she and I are buying for your
mother-in-law.

JOHN
Oh. When can I see you?

CYNTHIA
I don't know. I'm not sure I can
duplicate the level of intensity I
had the other day.

JOHN
Nothing wrong with trying.

CYNTHIA
I don't think my sister would agree.

A pause.

JOHN
Do you want me to stop calling?

CYNTHIA
Look, I'll call you, okay?

Cynthia hangs up and walks back to Ann.

CYNTHIA
So what's my share of the dress?

ANN
Thirty-two dollars.

Cynthia pulls thirty-five bucks out of her jeans. She watches
Ann put the money away.

CYNTHIA
Look, don't worry about the dress,
I'm sure she'll love it.

DUDE
(to Ann and Cynthia)
Hey!! How about Tom Brokaw? Nobody
does Brokaw.
(as Tom Brokaw)
"In Iran today..."

SCENE DELETED

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Graham sits reading a book. There is a knock at his door.

GRAHAM
It's open.

Cynthia enters the room, looking very intent on something.

GRAHAM
Hello.

CYNTHIA
Hi.

Graham sets his book down. He looks at her for a moment,
then drags on his cigarette.

CYNTHIA
Look, I'm just going to come right
out and tell you why I'm here, okay?

GRAHAM
Okay.

CYNTHIA
I'd like to make another tape.

Graham thinks for a moment.

GRAHAM
No.

CYNTHIA
No? Not even one more?

GRAHAM
I never do more than one. I'm sorry.

CYNTHIA
I can't talk you into it?

GRAHAM
No. You'll have to get somebody else.

CYNTHIA
Now who the hell is going to do that
for me?

GRAHAM
I'm sure a substantial number of men
in this town would volunteer.

CYNTHIA
But I want you to do it, I want
somebody who will ask the right
questions and everything, somebody I
can play to and feel safe because
you can't do anything.

GRAHAM
Ouch. Okay, I deserved that. Cynthia,
don't you understand? After the first
time it's just not spontaneous.
There's no edge anymore. Look at the
tapes, there is only one date on
each label. I have never taped anyone
twice.

CYNTHIA
So make an exception.

GRAHAM
No.

CYNTHIA
How about if you record over the one
we already made? You could have the
same date and not use another tape.
Who would know?

GRAHAM
I would.

CYNTHIA
Well, what the hell am I supposed to
do?

GRAHAM
Cynthia, I don't know.

CYNTHIA
I can't believe you're doing this
after I let you tape me.

GRAHAM
I'm sorry. I can't do it.

CYNTHIA
Goddamit, give me my tape, then.

GRAHAM
No.

Cynthia heads for the tape box. Graham leaps up to stop her.

CYNTHIA
(digging through the
box)
It's my fucking tape, you asshole --

Graham grabs her wrists momentarily.

GRAHAM
(heated)
No!! I told you what the parameters
were and you agreed. It's my tape. I
look at it, I touch it, nobody else.

Cynthia and Graham look at each other for a long moment.

GRAHAM
Please go, I'd like you to go now.

Cynthia looks at him.

CYNTHIA
Sure, okay.

She leaves.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

John and Ann lie in bed. The lights are out. Ann is wide
awake, while John is on the verge of sleep. He rolls over
and puts his arm around her. She gets up and sits in a chair
opposite the bed.

ANN
John?

JOHN
Mmmmm...

ANN
I called you Tuesday at 3:30 and
they said you weren't in. Do you
remember where you were?

CUT TO:

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

John and Cynthia are in Cynthia's bed, kissing. On the floor,
John's watch reads 3:11 pm.

CUT BACK TO:

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

JOHN
Tuesday. I had a late lunch.

ANN
Did you see a message to call me
when you got back in?

CUT TO:

EXT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

John leaves Cynthia's house and drives straight home, greeting
Ann as he steps through the front door.

CUT BACK TO:

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

JOHN
Yes. I just got busy.

ANN
That's interesting, because I didn't
leave a message.

John is waking up a little.

JOHN
Then maybe I saw an old message.
There are a lot of them on my desk,
you know.

ANN
Who'd you have lunch with?

JOHN
I ate by myself.

A pause.

JOHN
Something wrong?

ANN
Are you having an affair?

JOHN
Jesus Christ, where'd that come from?
I have a late lunch by myself and
now I'm fucking somebody?

ANN
Well, are you?

JOHN
No, I'm not. Frankly, I'm offended
at the accusation.

ANN
If I'm right, I want to know. I don't
want you to lie. I'd be very upset,
but not as upset as if I'd found out
you'd been lying.

JOHN
There's nothing to know, Ann.

ANN
I can't tell you how upset I would
be if you were lying.

JOHN
Ann, you are completely paranoid.
Not ten minutes ago I wanted to make
love for the first time in weeks,
and you act like I'm dipped in shit.
You know, I think there are a lot of
women that would be glad to have a
young, straight male making a pretty
good living beside them in bed with
a hard on.

ANN
My sister, for one. Is that who it
is?

JOHN
For God's sake, Ann, I am not fucking
your sister. I don't find her that
attractive, for one.

ANN
Is that supposed to comfort me?

JOHN
I was just saying, you know? I didn't
get paranoid when you didn't want to
make love. I could have easily assumed
that you didn't want to because you
were having an affair.

ANN
But I'm not.

JOHN
I'm not either!!

ANN
Why don't I believe you?

JOHN
Look, this conversation is utterly
ridiculous. Maybe when you have some
evidence, we should talk, but don't
give me conjecture and intuition.

ANN
Always the lawyer.

JOHN
Goddam right. I mean, can you imagine:
"Your honor, I'm positive this man
is guilty. I can't place him at the
scene or establish a motive, but I
have this really strong feeling."

ANN
You've made your point.

JOHN
I'm sorry. It's just... I'm under a
lot of pressure with this Kirkland
thing, it's my first big case as
junior partner, and I work all day,
I come home, I look forward to seeing
you, and... it hurts that you accuse
me like that.

A pause. Ann exhales.

ANN
I'm sorry, too. I... I get these
ideas in my head, you know, and I
have nothing to do all day but sit
around and concoct these intricate
scenarios. And then I want to believe
it so I don't think I've wasted the
whole day. Last week I was convinced
you were having an affair with
Cynthia, I don't know why.

JOHN
I don't, either. I mean, Cynthia, of
all people. She's so...

ANN
Loud.

JOHN
Yeah. Jeez, give me some credit.

ANN
I didn't say it was rational, I just
said I was convinced.

JOHN
Isn't therapy helping at all?

ANN
I don't know. Sometimes I feel stupid
babbling about my little problems
while children are starving in the
world.

JOHN
Quitting your therapy won't feed the
children of Ethiopia.

ANN
I know.

A pause.

ANN
You never used to say "fucking".

SCENE DELETED

INT. CYNTHIA BISHOP'S APARTMENT -- DAY

John sits on the edge of Cynthia's bed, slowly undressing.

JOHN
It's just so blatantly stupid, I
have a hard time believing you did
it.

CYNTHIA
What's so stupid about it?

JOHN
That you... you don't even know the
guy.

CYNTHIA
Well, you know him, he's a friend of
yours, do you think he can be trusted?

JOHN
Shit, after what you've told me, I
don't know. I should've known, when
he showed up dressed like some arty
brat.

CYNTHIA
I like the way he dresses.

JOHN
What if this tape gets into the wrong
hands?

CYNTHIA
"The wrong hands"? We're not talking
about military secrets, John. They're
just tapes that he makes so he can
sit around and get off.

JOHN
Jesus Christ. And he doesn't have
sex with any of them? They just talk?

CYNTHIA
Right.

JOHN
Jesus. I could almost understand it
if he was screwing these people,
almost. Why doesn't he just buy some
magazines or porno movies or
something?

CYNTHIA
Doesn't work. He has to know the
people, he has to be able to interact
with them.

JOHN
Interact, fine, but did you have to
masturbate in front of him, for God's
sake? I mean...

A pause.

CYNTHIA
I felt like it, so what? Goddam, you
and Ann make such a big deal out of
it.

JOHN
You told Ann about this?

CYNTHIA
Of course. She is my sister. I tell
her almost everything.

JOHN
I wish you hadn't done that.

CYNTHIA
Why not?

JOHN
It's just something I'd prefer she
didn't know about.

CYNTHIA
She's a grown-up, she can handle it.

JOHN
I just... Ann is very...

CYNTHIA
Hung up.

JOHN
It just wasn't a smart thing to do.
Did you sign any sort of paper, or
did he have any contract with you
saying he wouldn't broadcast these
tapes?

CYNTHIA
No.

JOHN
You realize you have no recourse
legally? This stuff could show up
anywhere.

CYNTHIA
It won't. I trust him.

JOHN
(disbelieving)
You trust him.

CYNTHIA
Yeah, I do. A helluva lot more than
I trust you.

JOHN
What do you mean?

CYNTHIA
Exactly what I said. I'd trust him
before I'd trust you. How much clearer
can I be?

JOHN
It hurts that you would say that to
me.

CYNTHIA
(laughs)
Oh, please. Come on, John. You're
fucking your wife's sister and you
hardly been married a year. You're a
liar. But at least I know you're a
liar. It's the people that don't
know, like Ann, that have to watch
out.

JOHN
By definition you're lying to Ann,
too.

CYNTHIA
That's right. But I never took a vow
in front of God and everybody to be
"faithful" to my sister.

JOHN
Look, are we going to do it or not?

CYNTHIA
Actually, no, I've changed my mind.
I shouldn't have called.

JOHN
(ingratiating)
Well, I'm here now. I'd like to do
something...

CYNTHIA
How about straightening up the living
room?

John doesn't smile.

CYNTHIA
Come on, John. You should be happy,
we've gone this far without Ann
finding out, I'm making it real easy
on you. Just walk out of here and
I'll see you at your house for a
family dinner sometime.

JOHN
Did he put you up to this?

CYNTHIA
Who?

JOHN
Graham.

CYNTHIA
No, he didn't put me up to this.
Jesus, I don't need people to tell
me what I should do. I've just been
thinking about things, that's all.

JOHN
I can't believe I let him stay in my
house. Right under my nose. That
deviant fucker was right under my
nose and I didn't see him.

CYNTHIA
If he had been under your prick you'd
have spotted him for sure.

JOHN
(looks at her)
God, you... you're mean.

CYNTHIA
I know. Will you please leave now?

JOHN
Maybe I don't want to leave. Maybe I
want to talk.

CYNTHIA
John, we have nothing to talk about.

JOHN
I knew it, I knew it. Things are
getting complicated.

CYNTHIA
No, John, things are getting real
simple.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Ann, dressed in some of John's work clothes (old cotton shirt,
khaki pants) is cleaning the house. Not cleaning like a normal
person, but like an obsessive/compulsive person. Scrubbing
spots that are already clean, vacuuming the same area of rug
over and over, etc. Suddenly, an object lodges itself in the
snout of the vacuum cleaner, making a loud noise. Shutting
the machine off, Ann turns it over and sees that Cynthia's
diamond stud earring has gotten hooked in the take-up roller.

Ann stares at Cynthia's earring for a long moment.

CUT TO:

Cynthia picking up her jacket from beside the bed after having
sex with John. The earring slips out of the pocket and bounces
under the edge of the bed.

CUT BACK TO:

Ann as she sets the earring onto the floor and begins to
pound it with the bottom of a water glass, trying to smash
it to pieces. She soon realizes the futility of trying to
break a diamond.

Ann looks down at herself. Suddenly realizing that she is
dressed in John's clothing, she frantically rips the shirt
and pants from her body as though the material were burning
her skin. Popped buttons skid across the floor.

Clothed only in her bra and underwear, Ann sits in the middle
of the bedroom floor, arms around herself.

EXT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- DAY

Ann, now in jeans and t-shirt, stumbles to her car. Once
inside, she jams the key into the ignition and rests her
head against the steering wheel.

EXT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Ann lifts her head from the steering wheel and looks up. She
looks almost surprised to find that she has driven to
Graham's.

Slowly, she gets out of the car.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Graham sits reading.

There is a weak knock at the door. Graham listens, not sure
he heard anything. There is a second weak knock.

GRAHAM
It's open!

Nothing happens. Graham gets up and opens the door himself.

Ann stands against the wall of the hallway, her head down,
her breathing deliberate. Concerned, Graham slowly begins to
lead her inside. Impulsively, she hugs him tightly.

Unaccustomed to physical contact, Graham's hands hang
awkwardly at his side. Ann slowly pulls back from the embrace
and sits down. Graham goes to the kitchen area and gets her
a glass of water. He gives it to her and sits in the chair
opposite. Ann holds the glass in her hand, staring at it.

GRAHAM
It's bottled, not tap.

A weak smile from Ann. She drinks, swallowing with difficulty.

ANN
I'm not sure why I came here. I had
kind of decided not to talk to you
after... you know.

GRAHAM
I know.

A pause.

ANN
That son of a bitch.

Ann looks at Graham.

ANN
(sarcastic)
John and Cynthia have been...
"fucking".

GRAHAM
I know.

ANN
(stunned)
You know?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
How did you know?

GRAHAM
She said it on her tape.

ANN
(angry)
Why didn't you tell me?

GRAHAM
Ann, when would I have told you? We
were not speaking, if you recall.

Ann says nothing.

GRAHAM
But even if we had been speaking, I
wouldn't have told you.

ANN
Why not?

GRAHAM
It's not my place to tell you these
things, Ann. You have to find out by
yourself or from John directly. You
have to trust me on this.

Ann shakes her head.

ANN
My life is... shit. It's all shit.
It's like somebody saying, "Okay,
chairs are not chairs, they're
actually swimming pools" I mean,
nothing is what I thought it was.
What happened to me? Have I been
asleep? I vaguely remember the
wedding, but a lot of it is just a
blur... like I was watching from a
distance. I can't believe him. Why
didn't I trust my intuition?

Graham says nothing.

ANN
And I'm vacuuming his goddam rug.
His rug, that he paid to have put in
his house. Nothing in that place
belongs to me. I wanted to put some
of my grandmother's furniture in it,
but he wouldn't let me. So I'm
vacuuming his rug. That bastard.

Ann looks at Graham.

ANN
I want to make a tape.

A pause.

GRAHAM
Do you think that's such a good idea?

ANN
Don't you want to make one?

GRAHAM
Yes. But I sense the element of
revenge here.

ANN
What difference does it make why I
do it?

GRAHAM
I want you to be aware of what you're
doing and why, because I know that
this is not the sort of thing you
would do in a normal frame of mind.

ANN
What would you know about a normal
frame of mind?

GRAHAM
(impressed)
That's a good question.

ANN
What do you have to do to get ready?

GRAHAM
Load a new tape, turn the camera on.

ANN
Then do it.

Graham opens a new box of videotapes.

ANN
How do you pay for all this? I mean,
rent, and tapes and this equipment.

GRAHAM
I have money.

ANN
What will you do when the money runs
out?

GRAHAM
It won't. Are you ready?

ANN
Yes.

Graham turns the camera on.

GRAHAM
Tell me your name.

ANN
Ann Bishop Millaney.

CUT TO BLACK:

THEN CUT TO:

EXT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DUSK

Street lights are illuminated. Night is imminent.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DUSK

Graham stops the video recorder. The record meter is stopped
at 46:02.

Ann sits beside Graham on the couch. She looks into his eyes,
stroking his hair.

After a moment, she gets up to leave.

INT. JOHN AND ANN MILLANEY'S HOUSE -- NIGHT

John is talking on the phone as Ann walks through the door.

He mumbles an apology into the receiver and hangs up as Ann
moves to the couch, her expression calm.

JOHN
(worried)
Jesus Christ! What the hell happened?
I came home and your car was gone,
the door was open, I thought for
sure you'd been abducted by some mad
fucker, I was literally just calling
the cops when you walked in. What
happened?

ANN
I want out of this marriage.

JOHN
(genuinely shocked)
What?

ANN
(looks at him)
I want out of this marriage.

JOHN
Why?

ANN
We'll call it uncontested or whatever.
I just want out.

John moves to sit beside her on the couch. Ann does not look
at him.

JOHN
(conciliatory)
Ann, honey, please, tell me what's
wrong. Don't just say you want out
and leave me wondering. You can't
just go without telling me why.

Ann turns to look at him for a moment, then turns away.

ANN
Fuck you. I can do what I want.

John's mouth literally hangs open in shock. He is dumbstruck.

ANN
I'll stay at my mother's.

John gets up from the couch and begins pacing.

JOHN
Where did you go when you left here?

ANN
I drove around. Then I went to talk
with Graham.

John smacks his hand on his leg.

JOHN
Goddammit, goddammit!! That son of a
bitch!!
(thinking)
Well, at least I know you didn't
fuck him.

ANN
No, but I wanted to. I really wanted
to, partially just to piss you off.

John is seething.

JOHN
You're leaving me for him, aren't
you? Well, that makes a sad sort of
sense. He can't, and you won't.

ANN
I'm not going to discuss this with
you anymore. You're making no sense.

John walks over to Ann.

JOHN
Did you make one of those goddam
tapes?

Ann says nothing.

JOHN
Answer me, godammit!! Did you make
one of those tapes?

ANN
Yes!

John explodes, hitting the wall all around Ann. She cowers
beneath the storm.

John bolts from the house.

ANN
DON'T YOU TOUCH HIM!!!

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT - NIGHT

Graham stands in the middle of the room with a cigarette in
his mouth, trying to teach himself to moonwalk.

EXT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- NIGHT

John screeches to a halt, parking haphazardly. He gets out
of the car and runs to Graham's apartment.

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- NIGHT

John bursts through the door without bothering to knock.
Graham looks up, startled. Before he can even react, John
has him by the lapels.

GRAHAM
Hi, John.

JOHN
Where are the tapes, Graham?

GRAHAM
What tapes?

JOHN
You know which tapes! Where are they?

GRAHAM
John, as a lawyer, you should know
that those tapes are private property.

JOHN
So is my wife, asshole!!

GRAHAM
She's not property, John, she's a
person. Were you just going to keep
right on lying to her?

JOHN
What the hell do you think? I love
Ann. You think I'm going to tell her
about Cynthia and hurt her feelings
like that?

GRAHAM
God, you need help.

JOHN
I need help? Whose sitting by himself
in a room choking his chauncey to a
bunch of videotapes, Graham? Not me,
buddy. You're the fucking nut. Now
show me those tapes.

GRAHAM
No.

JOHN
I'm not kidding, Graham, you'd better
do what I say. Give me those tapes.

GRAHAM
No.

John punches Graham in the jaw, knocking him to the floor.

Graham feels his mouth for blood as John picks him up by the
shirt.

JOHN
Graham, I swear to Christ I'll kill
your scrawny ass. Now give me those
tapes.

GRAHAM
No.

John roughly pushes Graham into one of the director's chairs,
which topples over and throws Graham to the floor once again.

John looks around. He sees the boxes of tapes and begins to
go through the contents. Graham gets up and runs over to
stop him.

GRAHAM
Get away from those!! They belong to
me!!

Graham and John struggle. John hits Graham in the stomach
and pushes him to the floor.

JOHN
Give me your keys.

GRAHAM
My keys?

John bends over and starts going through Graham's pockets.

JOHN
Your keys, asshole!! Your two fucking
keys!! Give them to me!!

GRAHAM
I'm not going to give you my keys.

John beats Graham until Graham can offer no resistance. He
then drags Graham into the hallway and leaves him there.

John then locks himself inside Graham's apartment.

John walks over to the boxes of videotapes and begins to
search through them spastically. He finds both Cynthia and
Ann's tapes.

After a brief deliberation, he decides to watch Ann's. He
turns on the player and the monitor. After pulling a chair
up to the screen, John presses the button marked "play".

In the hallway, Graham drags himself to the door of his
apartment. Putting his ear to the inlet, he strains to hear
what is going on inside.

John watches the monitor come to life.

The image is Ann, sitting in a chair.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Tell me your name.

ANN
(on tape)
Ann Bishop Millaney.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
You are married, correct?

JOHN
Goddam right.

ANN
(on tape)
Yes.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Who usually initiates sex?

John's jaw tightens.

JOHN
Bastard...

ANN
(on tape)
He does.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Do you talk to him?

ANN
(on tape)
When we're making love?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Yes.

ANN
(on tape)
Sometimes. Afterward.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Does he go down on you?

JOHN
(shouting at Graham)
You son of a bitch!!

ANN
(on tape)
Not very often.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
I would.

John is literally so mad he can't speak. He watches the screen
in mute anger, his hands wrapped tightly around the arms of
the chair. Graham still listens from the hallway.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Have you ever wanted to make love to
someone other than your husband?

JOHN
Goddamit...

Ann hesitates.

JOHN
(to Ann's image)
Answer him, goddammit!!

GRAHAM
(on tape)
You're hesitating. I think that means
you have.

JOHN
(to Graham on tape)
Shut up!!!

ANN
(on tape)
You don't know what I'm thinking.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
It's a simple question. Have you
ever thought of having -- making
love with someone other than your
husband?

John leans forward.

ANN
(on tape)
Is he going to see this?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Absolutely not.

A sarcastic chuckle from John. In the hallway, Graham furrows
his brow.

ANN
(on tape)
I have thought about it, yes.

JOHN
(to Ann's image)
You bitch. I knew it.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Did you have sex before you were
married?

ANN
(on tape)
Yes.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Did the person you made love with
satisfy you more than your husband?

JOHN
(to Graham)
God damn you!!

ANN
(on tape)
Yes.

John stands and throws his chair against the door. Graham,
still listening at the door, is startled.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
And you have thought about... making
love to that person again since you've
been married?

John watches the monitor, his eyes beginning to water.

ANN
(on tape)
I don't see what difference it makes,
I mean, I can think what I want.
(pause)
I don't know if I want to do this
anymore, I'm afraid... I don't mind
answering the questions so much, but
if somebody were to see this...

GRAHAM
(on tape)
At some level, I don't understand
your nervousness. Have you decided
to leave John?

Ann thinks. John watches.

ANN
(on tape)
Yes, I have. I will.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Then as far as this taping goes, you
have nothing to worry about.

ANN
(on tape)
I guess not.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Do you want me to stop?

John, absorbed in the image, absently shakes his head.

ANN
(on tape)
No.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Are there people other than your
previous lover that you have
fantasized about?

A pause.

ANN
(on tape)
Yes. Whenever... all right, look.
Whenever I see a man that I think is
attractive, I wonder what it would
be like with him, I mean, I'm just
curious, I don't act on it, but I
hate that I think that!! I wish I
could just forget about that stuff!!

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Why?

ANN
(on tape)
Because that's how Cynthia thinks!!
All she does is think about that
stuff, and I hate that, I don't want
to be like her, I don't want to be
like her!!

GRAHAM
(on tape)
You're not like your sister. You
couldn't be like her if you wanted
to.

ANN
(on tape)
I know. Deep down, I know that. It
just bothers me, when I have feelings
or impulses that she has.

John picks up the chair he threw and sets it upright. He
sits down and watches the screen impassively. Graham still
listens from outside.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
So you do fantasize?

ANN
(on tape)
Yes.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
About who?

ANN
(on tape)
I fantasized about you.

GRAHAM
(on tape)
About me?

ANN
(on tape)
Yes.

A pause.

ANN
(on tape)
Have you fantasized about me?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
I thought I made that clear before,
when I said I would go down on you.

ANN
(on tape)
I remember. You could do that,
couldn't you? Go down on me?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
Yes.

ANN
(on tape)
If I asked you to, would you? Not on
tape, I mean?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
No.

ANN
(on tape)
On tape?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
No.

ANN
(on tape)
Why not?

GRAHAM
(on tape)
If I can't do it all, I don't want
to do anything. And I can't do it
all.

ANN
(on tape)
Can't or won't?

A pause. John is still watching the tape, his face betraying
no emotion. Graham still listens from outside.

CUT TO:

The previous afternoon. We are no longer looking at Ann on
the monitor, but watching her and Graham AS THEY MADE THE
TAPE. For instance, we can now see Graham from Ann's point
of view, or the two of them at the same time, etc.

GRAHAM
Can't.

ANN
You said you weren't always impotent.

GRAHAM
That's correct.

ANN
So you have had sex.

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
Who was the last person you had sex
with?

GRAHAM
Her name was Elizabeth.

ANN
So what happened? Was it so bad that
it turned you off?

GRAHAM
No, it was wonderful. That wasn't
the problem.

ANN
What was the problem?

GRAHAM
The problem was me. I was... I was a
pathological liar. Or am, I should
say. Lying is like alcoholism, one
is always "recovering".

ANN
So you lied to her?

GRAHAM
Yes. I did. Willfully and repeatedly.

ANN
How come?

GRAHAM
I loved her for how good she made me
feel, and I hated her for how good
she made me feel. And at that time,
I tended to express my feelings non-
verbally. I couldn't handle anyone
having that much control over my
emotions.

ANN
And now you can?

GRAHAM
Now I make sure that no one has the
opportunity to test me.

ANN
Don't you get lonely?

GRAHAM
How could I, with all these nice
people stopping by? The fact is that
I've lived by myself for so long, I
can't imagine living with another
person. It's amazing what you can
get used to if enough time goes by.
And anyway, I'm asking the questions.
Are you happy?

ANN
I don't know anymore. I thought I
was, but obviously I was wrong.

GRAHAM
Did you confront John with the fact
that you knew about him?

ANN
Not yet. I'm not sure I will. I just
want out.

GRAHAM
If you do get out of your marriage,
will you continue to be inhibited?

ANN
I don't know. It all gets back to
that Cynthia thing. I don't like
her... eagerness. There's nothing
left to imagine, there's no...

GRAHAM
Subtlety?

ANN
Subtlety, yes. No subtlety. Plus,
I've never really felt able to open
up with anyone. I mean, that other
person I told you about, I enjoyed
making love with him a lot, but I
still wasn't able to really let go.
I always feel like I'm being watched
and I shouldn't embarrass myself.

GRAHAM
And you feel the same way with John?

ANN
Kind of. I mean, John's like this
kind of... craftsman. Like he's a
carpenter, and he makes really good
tables. But that's all he can make,
and I don't need anymore tables.

GRAHAM
Interesting analogy.

ANN
I'm babbling.

GRAHAM
No, you're not.

ANN
(thinking)
God, I m so mad at him!!

GRAHAM
You should be. He lied to you. So
did Cynthia.

ANN
Yeah, I know, but somehow I expect
that from her, I mean, she'll do it
with almost anybody, I don't know, I
shouldn't stick up for her I guess,
but him. He lied so... deeply!! Ooo,
I want to watch him die!!

Ann sits quietly for a moment. Graham watches her silently.

The camera continues to roll.

ANN
(looks up at Graham)
You're really never going to make
love again?

GRAHAM
I'm not planning on it.

A pause.

ANN
If you were in love with me, would
you?

GRAHAM
I'm not in love with you.

ANN
But if you were?

GRAHAM
I... I can't answer that precisely.

ANN
But I feel like maybe I could be
really comfortable with you.

GRAHAM
That's very flattering.

ANN
So why won't you make love with me?
Why wouldn't you, I mean?

GRAHAM
Ann. Are you asking me hypothetically,
or are you asking me for real, right
now?

ANN
I'm asking for real. I want you to
turn that camera off and make love
with me. Will you?

A pause.

GRAHAM
I can't.

ANN
Why not?

GRAHAM
I've told you.

ANN
But I don't understand --

GRAHAM
Ann, it could happen to me all over
again, don't you see? I could start
to --

ANN
But how do you know for sure, you
have to try to find a way to fig --

GRAHAM
I couldn't face her if I had slept
with somebody else.

A pause.

ANN
Who? Elizabeth?

GRAHAM
(uncomfortable)
Yes.

ANN
You mean you're still in contact
with her?

GRAHAM
No.

ANN
But you're planning to be?

GRAHAM
I don't know. Possibly.

ANN
Wait a minute, wait a minute. What's
going on here? Did you come back
here just to see her again?

GRAHAM
Not entirely.

ANN
But that was part of it?

GRAHAM
Yes.

ANN
Like maybe a big part?

GRAHAM
Possibly.

ANN
Graham, I mean, what do you think
her reaction is going to be if you
contact her?

GRAHAM
I don't know.

ANN
Look at you, look at what's happened
to you, look how you've changed!
Don't you think she will have changed?

GRAHAM
I don't know. I really would rather
not talk about it.

ANN
(has to laugh)
Whoa!! I'm so glad we got that on
tape!! You won't answer a question
about Elizabeth, but I have to answer
all these intimate questions about
my sex life!! Graham, what do you
think she's going to make of all
these videotapes? Are you going to
tell her about them? I can't imagine
her being too understanding about
that. But since you don't lie anymore,
you'll have to say something.

GRAHAM
As I said, I haven't decided what to
do, exactly. Perhaps I won't do
anything.

ANN
Oh, you just moved here to think
about it, right?

Graham says nothing. Ann looks at him.

ANN
Oh, God, Graham, this is so...
pathetic. You're not even what you
pretend to be, you're a lie, you're
a bigger lie than you ever were.

Graham sets the camera down, though it continues to record.

He is visibly upset.

GRAHAM
All right, you want to talk about
lies, let's talk about lies, Ann.
Let's talk about lying to yourself.
You haven't been able to sleep with
your husband because you're no longer
in love with him, and maybe you never
were. You haven't been honest with
yourself in longer than you can
remember.

ANN
(heated)
Yeah, you're right. But I never
claimed to know everything like you,
and have all these little theories.
I'm still learning, I know that. But
I don't feel like I've wasted time.
If I had to go through my marriage
to get to where I am right now, fine.

Ann moves in closer, burrowing, her eyes on fire.

ANN
But you. You have wasted nine years.
I mean, that has to be some sort of
weird record or something, nine years.
How does that feel?

Graham says nothing. Ann picks up the camera and points it
at him.

GRAHAM
Don't do that.

ANN
Why not?

GRAHAM
Because.

ANN
"Because"? That's not good enough. I
asked you a question, Graham. I asked
you "how does it feel"? How does it
feel, Mr. I Want To Go Down On You
But I Can't? Do you know how many
people you've sucked into your weird
little world? Including me? Come on,
how does it feel?

GRAHAM
I can't tell you like this.

ANN
I'm just going to keep asking until
you answer. I'm sure there's plenty
of tape.

GRAHAM
I don't find this "turning the tables"
thing very interesting --

ANN
I don't care.

Graham reaches up for the camera. Ann knocks his hand away.

ANN
Not until I get some answers. Tell
what you feel. Not what you think,
I've heard plenty of that. What you
feel.

Graham is on the verge of completely falling apart.

ANN
Come on!!

GRAHAM
All right!! All right!! You want to
know? You want to know how I feel? I
feel ashamed. Is that what you wanted
to hear?

A pause. Graham regains his composure somewhat.

ANN
Why are you ashamed?

GRAHAM
Jesus Christ, Ann. Why is anybody
anything? I think you have this idea
that people are either all good or
all bad, and you don't allow for any
gray areas, and that's what most of
us consist of.

ANN
You're not answering me.

GRAHAM
(heated)
Well, what kind of answer are you
looking for, Ann? What is it exactly
that you want to know?

ANN
I want to know why you are the way
you are!

GRAHAM
And I'm telling you it's not any one
thing that I can point to and say
"That's why!" It doesn't work that
way with people who have problems,
Ann, it's not that neat, it's not
that tidy! It's not a series of little
boxes that you can line up and count.
Things just don't happen that way.

ANN
But why can't you just put it all
behind you? Can't you just forget
it? All that stuff you did?

GRAHAM
No, Ann, I can't. I can't forget it.
It's not something I can fix. It's
difficult. There s something in my
mind... the way my brain works...
(frustrated)
God, Ann, when you're with another
person, and you're... inside them,
you're so vulnerable, you're revealing
so much... there's no protection.
And... somebody could say, or do
something to you while you're in
this... state of... nakedness. And
they could hurt you without even
knowing it. In a way that you couldn't
even see.
(looks at Ann)
And you would withdraw. To make sure
it didn't happen again.

Ann looks at him for a long moment and then sets the camera
down.

She moves in front of Graham and kneels.

ANN
I want to touch you.

Graham shakes his head.

ANN
I want to touch you.

GRAHAM
No.

Ann reaches out, and Graham instinctively begins to move
away.

ANN
Graham.

Something in her voice makes him stop. Their eyes lock. Graham
slowly moves back toward her.

Ann's hand eases out to him, her eyes still burning into
his.

Graham closes his eyes, accepting Ann's touch.

She caresses him.

Slowly.

Delicately.

She touches his arms, his face, his hair.

Closing her eyes, she takes his hand and puts it against her
face.

She begins to lie him back on the couch. When he offers light
resistance, she gently persists.

ANN
Keep your eyes closed.

Graham lies back, silently obeying.

Ann touches his face.

Gradually, her hand slips to his neck and she begins to
unbutton his shirt. She watches his face, hoping that he
will remain calm. He does.

She rubs her hand on his chest.

Once again she brings Graham's hand to her face. She moves
his hand to her neck and throat, painting her skin with his
fingers.

Soon each hand is exploring the other. Fingers search for
and find hidden areas.

Ann stands.

Their hands remain together, and Graham's eyes remain closed.

Ann moves onto the couch with Graham.

She gently lowers herself into a sitting position on his
waist.

She slowly moves both of her hands onto Graham's chest. They
move forward and back, like a lazy tide.

She looks at Graham. His face is tranquil.

Ann quietly begins to move her face toward his.

Soon she is hovering inches above him, her long hair touching
his features.

She lowers her lips to his forehead and kisses him. She waits
for a negative reaction. Getting none, she moves lower and
kisses his eyes. Still receiving no discouragement, she moves
to his nose.

A subtle movement from Graham. Ann waits for a moment.

She then moves to his lips, her luxuriant tresses enveloping
his face.

She kisses him lightly.

She kisses him again.

Graham tilts his head back and she softly kisses his neck.

Graham's hands make their way up Ann's back until they have
reached her neck. He slowly pulls his face to hers.

He kisses her.

Graham is flooded with warmth and excitement.

He caresses her, intoxicating himself with physical contact.

The kisses become more meaningful, and the touching becomes
more passionate.

For a moment, Graham seems about to evaporate in a state of
ecstasy, his eyes filled with relief and happiness.

But his gaze happens to fall on the video camera, which
continues to record.

Graham seizes up and abruptly backs away from Ann's embrace.

Reality slowly envelopes him.

ANN
Graham...

GRAHAM
I'm okay. It's okay.

Ann reaches for his hand. He allows her to take it.

GRAHAM
(almost dazed)
It's okay.

Graham looks at Ann for a long moment. She sees the acceptance
and gratitude in his eyes. She smiles lightly.

Graham moves forward and shuts off the camera.

CUT BACK TO:

John watching the tape. There is video snow on the monitor
now.

The tape timer reads 46:02. John gets up slowly, ejects the
tape from the player, and heads for the door.

Graham, hearing the footsteps approach, backs away from the
inlet. His eye is swollen, and he holds one of his hands in
a curious position.

John opens the door. He looks at Graham for a moment before
reaching into his pocket for Graham's keys. He dangles them
in his hand as he stands over Graham.

JOHN
I never told you this, because I
thought it would crush you, but now
I could give a shit.
(pause)
I fucked Elizabeth. Before you broke
up. Before you were having trouble,
even. So you can stop making her
into a saint. She was good in bed
and she could keep a secret. And
that's about all I can say about
her.

John drops Graham's keys to the floor and leaves. Graham
stands, fighting back tears, and walks into his apartment.

He pulls Ann's tape from the videotape player.

He reaches inside the cassette cartridge and pulls the
videotape itself out, ruining it forever. He does the same
to every other tape in both the boxes. Calmly. Deliberately.
Methodically.

He walks over to the camera/recorder, trailing a mound of
videotape behind him. He breaks the lens off the camera body,
and smashes the inner workings against the edge of the table.

He then drops the damaged unit into the pile of destroyed
tape, where it disappears.

CUT TO BLACK:

THEN CUT TO:

INT. LAW OFFICES -- DAY

John Millaney talks to his colleague.

JOHN
Man, not having to answer to
anybody... I feel like this huge
weight has been lifted from my
shoulders. I mean, come on, if I
decide that I'd rather live alone,
what's so bad about that? It's not
like I've decided to live a life of
crime, right? It's just how I feel,
you can't help the way you feel, you
just have to be honest about it.

John dials a number on his telephone.

VOICE ON PHONE
IBM.

JOHN
(to phone)
Brian Kirkland, please.

VOICE ON PHONE
May I ask who's calling?

JOHN
John Millaney.

VOICE ON PHONE
One moment.

JOHN
(to his colleague)
Anyway, I've always said, the work
is the thing. I can be happy without
a marriage, but take away my work,
that's different. And if Ann can't
handle that, that's her problem,
like we re all alone in this world,
you know what I'm saying? I mean,
fuck.
(looks at phone)
Jesus, what's takin' this guy?

The intercom clicks to life.

SECRETARY
(on speaker)
Mr. Millaney?

JOHN
Yeah.

SECRETARY
(on speaker)
Mr. Forman would like to see you in
his office.

JOHN
Okay, in a minute, I'm on with a
client.

SECRETARY
(on speaker)
He said immediately.

JOHN
All right, jesus.

The intercom clicks off.

VOICE ON PHONE
Mr. Millaney?

JOHN
Yes?

VOICE ON PHONE
Mr. Kirkland has asked me to inform
you that he has obtained legal
representation elsewhere, and that
if you have a message for him to
leave it with me.

John swallows.

JOHN
Thank you. I... there is no message.

Thank you.

John hangs up. He thinks for a moment, rubbing his forehead.

The intercom clicks to life.

SECRETARY
(on speaker)
Mr. Millaney, Mr. Forman is waiting.

DUDE
(voice over)
Come on, I'm not asking too much, am
I? Just one little question.

INT. LOUNGE -- DAY

Cynthia is tending bar. The Dude from earlier is still there,
puffing on a big cigar.

DUDE
Just tell me what time you get off.
Work, I mean. What's the harm in
that? Whaddaya say?

Ann enters the lounge. Cynthia watches with apprehensive
surprise as Ann approaches with a potted plant.

CYNTHIA
(to Dude)
Excuse me.

Cynthia moves to meet Ann at the end of the bar. Ann sets
the plant down on the counter. Her manner is diffident, but
not hostile.

ANN
I know it's your birthday, and I
know you like plants. So I got you
this.

Cynthia is very moved, though she struggles valiantly to
conceal her emotions.

CYNTHIA
Thank you.

ANN
Well. I can't stay.

Ann begins to leave.

CYNTHIA
Can I call you?

Ann turns back to face her. They look at each other for a
moment.

ANN
Do you have my work number?

CYNTHIA
No.

Ann writes the number down on a napkin.

ANN
I get real busy between two and four.

CYNTHIA
Okay.

Ann looks at Cynthia again before leaving.

ANN
Bye.

CYNTHIA
Bye.

Ann leaves. Cynthia continues to look at the door long after
Ann has left.

DUDE
Nice plant.

Cynthia turns to him.

CYNTHIA
Do me a favor. Don't come in here
anymore.

SCENE DELETED

INT. GRAHAM'S APARTMENT -- DAY

Graham sits reading. There is now some furniture in the
apartment. Bookshelves, plants, etc. There are periodicals
on the table where the video gear used to be. There are no
cigarettes.

There is a knock at Graham's door, which now has a deadbolt
lock.

GRAHAM
Who is it?

A knock again. Graham sets his book down and goes to the
door.

He unlocks the deadbolt and opens it.

Ann stands in the hallway.

Graham is obviously flushed with feeling at seeing her. She
wordlessly moves into the room, her movements like a slow
breeze, her expression calm.

Graham watches her go by.

She stops in the middle of the room, her back to him.

Graham moves toward her slowly. Sensing him behind her, her
breathing becomes deep.

Graham slowly enfolds her in his arms, his face against her
hair.

She closes her eyes as their fingers entwine.

CUT TO BLACK:

THE END

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