Genre: crime thriller
A crime thriller about a homicide inspector who suffers nightmares from when his teenage girlfriend was abducted, and now must face reality in a brutal cat and mouse game when the kidnapper reemerges with a vicious vendetta by leaving dead women as clues. When he manages to save a victim, his partner, and adolescent daughter, become targets, while he’s inexplicably drawn into the overpowering orbit of the mysterious woman he saved.
Theme: Vengeance knows no bounds. Guilt is a cruel master
EXT. SAN FRANCISCO – SOMA STREET – NIGHT
Adolescent couple (13, 15), dressed fashionably grunge, lean against grimy wall mid-block, making out. Fog makes colorful haze of CROWD gathered in front of nightclub at end of street.
(lips pressed to boy’s)
I thought you knew somebody, Jake.
I know lots of somebodys, Kath.
Then, why’re we out here in the fog makin‘ out instead of inside with the music and pot smoke, makin‘ out?
How was I supposed to know all my somebodys got the same night off.
I’m so sure…
Look, girl, it’s all just to win your heart.
As long as my pussy’s attached, right, lover?
Their heads turn to sharp TAPPING on sidewalk. A MAN in antique suit and hat strides by, his cane clicking in sync with his gait. Backlit, his face is obscured, setting Gothic tone.
They watch him pass, then smile wickedly at each other. Kath taps Jake’s lips with index finger that sports a beautiful custom-made ring.
Let’s do it, lover.
The man turns down alley. They follow the clicking cane in. Catching up, Jake pulls a switchblade from his leather jacket.
Hey mister, ya feel like making a donation to abandoned youth?
The man stops short, causing Jake to stop and Kath to run into him. The man turns slowly. Light from a single bulb up high cuts across his face, showing only his grim smile.
Jake grimaces, raises his knife into the light.
Better dig deep, mister, we’ve a lot of hungry mouths to feed.
My, but this is a surprise.
It usually is.
First time the tables have been turned, so to speak.
The man pulls off his hat as he bows, then replaces it as he comes up, keeping his face in shadow.
GRIM MAN (CONT’D)
Happy to make your acquaintance.
Jake prods air with his knife.
What the fuck, mister! Hand over your wallet before I nip you.
Better do it quick, mister, before my lover-boy scars ya.
The man’s smile evaporates. Instantly, a silver flash leaves his cane and slashes across Jake’s forearm.
Jake screams, lurching back. His knife skitters into the darkness, and Kath is knocked on her ass. Like a fencing master, the man skips two quick steps forward, lunging out, piercing Jake’s chest with the sword tip.
His forward foot comes to rest on Kath’s rib cage, pinning her to the ground. She whimpers, reaching out to Jake, her hand with the ring all that he sees.
The man circles his sword tip in the air.
Go on boy, scat. She’s mine, now.
In agonizing slowness, Kath’s terror-filled eyes come up to meet Jake’s.
INT. SAN FRANCISCO – COURTHOUSE CELL BLOCK – DAY
JAKE SMITHSON’S eyes pop open from DREAM. He’s now 30, wearing jeans and tee shirt, curled on his side facing a cinder block wall. He rubs his forearm.
Open up cell 12.
As door slides open, Jake rolls upright, rubs his face.
Is it that time?
That’s right, now get your ass on up out of there.
Jake lumbers up. He’s tall, well-built. He grabs his brown leather bomber jacket off empty bunk, exits cell. He shuffles slowly ahead of the guard.
I want to thank you for those Warriors tickets last night.
Least I could do since you forewent the cavity search.
Hey, we don’t do that shit in here!
How’d your son like the game?
Yeah, he liked it a lot. He says thanks, too.
At guard station, Jake goes through exit door, guard enters booth. They face each other through glass bank-style window.
Do you think you can stay out of here for a few weeks, at least?
Not making any promises.
Guard shakes head, slides manilla envelope through slot. Jake dumps out wallet, keys, SFPD BADGE, and Glock 9mm.
Inspector, you take care of yourself, Okay?
Not as good as you take care of me, Franklin.
Go on and get your punk ass out of here. People’ll get the wrong idea.
Jake turns to see his partner, BRADLEY PIERCE (early 30s), arms crossed, scowling at him. He looks like an ad from GQ, impeccably dressed in a tailor-made suit, hair fashionably short, clean-shaven, gleam in his eye.
How many years have I been telling you that you have to be more Zen, to take the softer approach?
Exactly, and you haven’t taken the hint.
Jake throws an arm over Bradley’s shoulders. They couldn’t be more opposite in appearance, rough and tough vs highly refined.
Likewise. You’d think you would’ve stopped about four-and-a-half-years ago.
Look, all I’m saying is you can’t question a judge’s heredity in his own courtroom, for Christ’s sake. How many times do you think you can get away with this?
They love me down here.
EXT. SAN FRANCISCO – MARKET STREET – DAY
1968 MUSTANG GT FASTBACK laces through moderate traffic.
INT. MUSTANG – CONTINUOUS
POLICE RADIO under dash CHATTERS low. Jake wears headphones, taps steering wheel to unheard beat. Bradley dozes.
Let’s get some chow.
I said, I’m hungry. Let’s get some breakfast.
Yeah, Okay. I know a great burger joint near here.
It’s 7 AM.
Yeah, you’re right. How about Mexican food? We can cut over to that place in the Mission where the girls dress like torch song singers–
Bradley turns up police radio.
Multiple shots fired, 6th and Folsom. Any car respond.
Bradley grabs mic.
Hey, hang a left! This is Inspector Pierce. We’re a minute away, over.
Acknowledged inspector, proceed with extreme caution.
(different voices cut in, singing)
Bad Boys, Bad Boys, what’cha gonna do when they come for you… Hey, make sure ya don’t kill em all before the rest of us get there.
Jake grabs mic from Bradley.
That’s a big 10-no-can-do, because lord knows you piss ants can’t shoot any better than you can sing.
EXT. SAN FRANCISCO – 6TH AND FOLSOM – DAY
Mustang comes down 6th, crosses Folsom, slows.
INT. MUSTANG – CONTINUOUS
The inspector’s eyeballs roam the street and buildings. Jake grits his teeth as he glances down a passing alley. Bradley leans out window.
Don’t hear anything. Swing back and go down the alley.
Sweat breaks out on his forehead as he u-turns into alley. He stares straight ahead, unconsciously rubbing his forearm.
Jake snaps out of reverie.
No, ah, must’ve been a–
Suddenly, a BIG MAN (20’s) bolts from a doorway. He wears expensive clothes with no fashion sense. Jake slams the brakes just as the man whips around with a gun aimed directly at him. The front bumper taps the man’s leg, misdirecting the shot. He staggers back, aims again, pulls trigger. He’s out of ammo.
The inspectors spring out as man leaps onto fire escape ladder.
Take the inside route in case he comes down.
Jake follows man up ladder as Bradley enters basement door.
INT. WAREHOUSE – CONTINUOUS
Bradley races through basement, up stairs, comes out on roof.
EXT. WAREHOUSE – CONTINUOUS
Gun out, he cautiously rounds the stairwell enclosure. He stops, straightens up and rolls eyes in exasperation.
Jake is on tippy-toes, the big man behind him, firmly grasping Jake’s forehead, pulling his head back, exposing his throat to the business edge of a wicked-looking commando knife.
Ya know, I’ve been wanting to do that for weeks, now, but you know how fantasies go.
You stop right there or this guy’s gonna be a few pints short real quick.
That’s what I’m talking about. That’s a great fantasy.
Bradley holsters his gun as he moves slowly forward.
What the fuck are you talking about?
Yeah, what the fuck, man. Just go for a walk or somethin‘ while me and him finish our dance.
See what I mean? He’s just a prissy little bitch.
Bradley steps closer.
I’m warning you…
Do you have to be such a chatterbox? Go ahead and stick him already. I can’t do it because I’m his partner.
Bradley steps within range. Bad guy reflexively brings knife away from Jake’s throat to point at Bradley.
Back up, motherfu…
In that split second, Bradley does a spinning hooked back kick high over Jake’s shoulder, cracking his heel into bad guy’s head, staggering him away from Jake.
Reversing direction, Bradley’s foot hits bad guy on opposite side of his head, flipping him onto his back, out cold.
Jake jumps away clutching his neck, but sees there’s no blood.
What the fuck was that?! He coulda decapitated me!
What a whiner. The knife was a good three inches from a major artery.
The prone man comes to, pulls gun, groggily waving it in their general direction.
Suck this, faggot!
Bradley leaps, presumably to shield Jake, but instead, goes behind him as gun fires two shots into Jake’s chest. Jake falls backwards, pinning Bradley under him. Jake wheezes as bad man staggers over and shakily points gun at his head.
Never bring chop socky to a gun fight, fucker.
Like a third arm, a hand with gun slides up from Jake’s armpit.
Gun fires and bad man drops, surprise on his face.
(muffled and pained)
You can roll off me, now.
sideways still coughing for breath.
You’re supposed to jump in front of me to block the bullet, dipshit.
You’re the one wearing the vest.
It’s always technicalities with you.
I probably wouldn’t have shot the fucker if he hadn’t called me a faggot. How’d he know I was a faggot, anyway?
Ah, I might of let it slip.