A Fantastic Fear of Everything (2012) Script

(TAPPING OF TYPEWRITER KEYS)

(TYPE WRITER BELL TINGS)

(JACK) Once upon a time... not so long ago...


(BREATH ES HEAVILY)


(CREAKING)

Ah!

(BREATH ES HEAVILY)

This is the story of me.

Jack.

There I am, absolutely shitting it.

I'd been carrying a carving knife with me for three weeks due to an irrational fear of being murdered.

I couldn't sleep at night.

As soon as I got into bed, I started seeing killers.

(SCREAMING IN DISTANCE)

These killers were the subject of a series of plays I had been writing for television.

The nature of the project necessitated research into heinous Victorian criminals.

And I had unwittingly familiarized myself with all the famous hackers, dosers and severers of the 19th century.

Faces that would've frightened the Ripper.

Many a long night I spent there, drenched in thoughts of bloody murder.

I became particularly disturbed by a man I called The Hendon Ogre.

A maniac from North London who had boiled the arsenic out of fly papers and introduced the result into his lodger's broth.

I'd lie awake for hours, thinking of the brute, terrified someone was slipping arsenic into my diet.

In the mornings, I'd inspect grapefruit and milk bottle tops looking for evidence of interference with syringes.

Trivial events became vital clues in the detection of my assassin.

(TELEPHONE RINGS)

If the telephone rang at half past four, I'd look at the clock and say, "it was half past four when the telephone rang that fateful evening.

"How could anyone have known at the time

"how important that telephone call was to become?"

My situation became unbearable.

I suspected everyone and everything.

Innocent passersby.

Creeks in the corridor.

Bumps in the night got so bad, I started plugging my head shut.

But I'd soon have to get up and check for killers in the bathroom, in the kitchen... in the fridge, or in the hallway, where they kept a low profile, crawling about in the shadows, lurking behind creaky doors.

Ah!

Bloody windows, bloody draughts.


(WHISPERS) Oh, God, come on.

Argh!

This fear that I would be murdered all began sometime before.

At lunch, to be exact.

The day I saw my literary agent...

- Newspaper? - .. Clair De Grunwald.

Thanks. No problem.

(JACK) She'd arranged to meet me at a respectable establishment in Soho.

(VIETNAMESE ACCENT) You like newspaper?

Shall I bring sir the wine list? Yes. Okay.

Pleasure.

(JACK) "The body was found in the East End of London, "but the Hanoi Handshake is the unmistakable calling card

"of a Vietnamese gang killing.

"According to one unnamed police source

"downtown Hackney, also known as Little Vietnam

"is now a bloody jungle...

"of organized crime.

"The missing fingers have yet to be found."

Newspaper?

Whoa, hey, no... Sir.

No, it... Please... Jack?

Clair. Under the table already?

It's not even 12:00.

No, I... I'm sorry.

I'm afraid I only have an hour.

I've got to go meet Ragsie Lawrence.

Remember Ragsie? The dancing dyke?

She's just been made commissioning editor at the BBC.

Can you believe it?

Never underestimate a hunchback, that's what I say.

Are you staying there all lunch? No, sorry.

Anyway...

It's good timing. I can tell her how busy you are with your murders.

Up to my elbows. Good.

Do you have a title? "Decades of Death".

Chilling. Well, if you want murder...

...then Victorian Britain is the golden age.

I think murder's lost its sense of theatre. What do we have now?

It's just like kids... Mindless violence?

Exactly. Yes. Killers don't put any thought into their murders anymore.

Have you heard of Long Ear? Can't say I have, no.

Terrifying Polish plumber who hacked off a Frenchman's head.

Disposed of the limbs, but couldn't think of what to do with the head.

Eventually he utilized his gas-fired crucible filled the mouth with lead, slung the thing in the river.

Can you imagine?

I'm sorry, sir. This is a non-smoking restaurant. Thank you.

Are you ready to order, madam? Do you know what you're having?

I'll just have a beer. I'm not very hungry.

One beer. This is my treat, darling.

Well, then I will have the chicory salad with asparagus croutons, chorizo and poached egg to start.

Followed by the salmon and leek fish cake with mushy peas, chips and chive cream. Thank you. Lovely.

People love a good murder.

(JACK) I began to tell Clair about my good friend Professor Friedkin, author of an influential paper on the criminal stare, an ocular condition that instantly identified a madman.

Monsieur?

(CLAIR) Jack?

Jack? Jack?

Jack?

Jack? Yes. Sorry.

Are you all right? Yes.

Yes. I'm sorry. (GIGGLES NERVOUSLY)

What was I talking about? The book.

The criminal stare. Oh, yes, yes. the criminal stare.

Yeah. I found... I've trawled through hundreds of these photographs and...

Um, when you kill someone, when you take a life, you acquire these awful eyes, you know, like a shark or a chicken.

How frightful. But it's not just a horror show.

I've realised that's not the reason I have to write this.

No, it's a detective story, you see, about how they become killers.

How do they get there? What fills them with need to victimize and kill?

Why choose mass murder? Why not become a writer?

Well, actually, writers and serial killers are very similar.

They're practically brothers.

Hemingway says, “What do you need to become a writer?

"An unhappy childhood." It's the same thing with serial killers.

Whatever happened to the hedgehog?

What? - He had to cross the road...

...and go into the woods, but he was afraid.

Harold the Hedgehog? Harold the Hedgehog.

Dear little chap. Whatever happened to that story?

You never finished him. He nearly finished me.

He wrecked my marriage, prickly cunt.

No, he did, Clair. I'm sorry, the stress of it.

Drove Catherine out of my life. What do you wanna talk about him for?

Darling, I'm just thinking you need to earn some money, that's all.

This death thing could take a while.

Timmy the Tortoise can't pay the bills.

I don't want him to. I didn't mean to become a children's author.

It was a terrible accident. It was your destiny.

Look, why not rattle off a little bedtime story, mm?

Timmy goes to the seaside perhaps? Oh, God.

Or Harold. How did it start?

"Once upon a time, there was a hedgehog called Harold

"Who lived in a bush." (GIGGLES)

(MUSIC BOX PLAYS)

(VOICE ECHOING) Or Little Johnny Rabbit.

The world is dying for another Little Johnny Rabbit.

Little Johnny Rabbit is dead.

So is Timmy, so is the fucking hedgehog.

They're lying in the road, covered in blood. I killed them.

Tell that to the kids.

(THUNDER)

Darling, we're going to make this work.

Just try not to worry too much, and take care of yourself.

You know me better than anyone, Clair.

Yes, I do. You're a workaholic and you're sensitive.

I don't wanna see you go over the edge like what's-his-name.

(GASPS)

(JACK) Clair's concerns about me proved justified.

Three weeks on and Long Ear's head was playing on my mind.

(CREAKING)

Life was hellish, but it was just about to get a hell of a lot worse.

(FOOTSTEPS)

(DOOR HANDLE SQUEKS)

Come on then, you bastards!

Aaaaaargh!

My knife.

(BREATHES DEEPLY)

Ah!

(SPOOKY WHISPERING)

(LAUGHS)

You mad bastard.

(CREAKING)

(URINE SPLASHING IN TOILET)

(BREATH ES NERVOUSLY)

(SPLASH OF URINE CONTINUES)

# As evening shadows chase the sun

# The night is here, my day is done

# Through dark forests in the night

# A light is shone

# It's you I've found

# I see you

# I see you #

Argh!

(GASPS)

(SOFTLY) Oh, God.

(DISTANT POLICE SIREN)

Oh, I got an hour.

(BUZZ OF HELICOPTER)

The flying eye Oh, someone's on the loose.

(PHONE RINGS)

It was 5:00 when the telephone rang that fateful evening.

Shit, I could... (DOOR BUZZER)

(CHILDREN) # We wish you a merry Christmas

(OUT OF TUNE) # We wish you a merry Christmas

# We wish you a merry Christmas (COUGHING)

# And a Happy New Year... # Hello?

Happy Christmas.

(ALL) Happy Christmas.

What do you want? We're singing carols.

Yeah, I can see that.

Well, ain't you gonna come out and hear us then, bruv?

No, I can hear you perfectly well from up here. Thank you.

We've been out for ages and no one's given us nuffink yet.

Well, honestly, I think you should perhaps work on your repertoire.

Our what? Sorry I can't help you. Good night.

But it's for Save the Children.

Kids who ain't got no food, Nintendo or nothing, bruv.

# We won't go until we got some We won't go until we got some

# We won't go until we got some #

All right, all right. Wait there.

I'm coming down. Yes.

(GASPS)

You gonna open up this door, then, or what, bruv?

Um, I tell you what I'm gonna do.

I'm gonna put some loose change into this sock and then I'm gonna feed it through the letter box.

Did you get that? (KID) Is it clean?

Is it what? Is it clean?

Is the sock clean, bruv?

Well, it's not box fresh, if that's what you mean.

Do you want this money or not?

(PHONE RINGS)

Oh, God.

Who are you?

You there? Yes. Yes.

I just... Stand back, okay? Stand back.

Christ, can't you see I'm not in?

Er...

Okay. Get ready. (PHONE STOPS RINGING)

I'm opening my flap.

Here it comes. Gently does it.

Gently. (PHONE RINGS)

God in heaven, will you just fuck off and give me some peace?

Hey, wait. Just come back!

Oi! What about my sock? You little thieving, you...

(SOFTLY) You... you did this.

You wanna hear my voice, you sick fuck?

Hear this.

(FUZZY) Hello? - Jack, it's Clair.

Hello?

- Jack, it's Clair. - Clair.

Why haven't you been answering? I've been calling for hours.

I thought you were a wrong number. - Well, listen.

I've just had a very excited man on the phone.

- Have you? Yes. He's read your treatment...

...for "Decades of Death" and he's very excited by your ideas.

He wants to meet you tonight at eight o'clock.

Oh.

- I see. Eight o'clock? - He's off to New York tomorrow.

- It's imperative you see him. Why is it imperative?

Because he's Harvey Humphries.

Harvey Humphries? Who's he? Head of scripts.

Clair, look, can I see him when he comes back from New York?

Because I've not been sleeping very well and...

Jack, he's genuinely excited. The arrangements have all been made.

Tonight, eight o'clock, 100 Humbolt Mews.

100 Humbolt Mews, eight...

That's in one hour and 47 minutes. Wear a suit, please.

- I don't have any suits. Wear a clean shirt.

They're all dirty. I'm down to my last sock.

Then you'll have to go to the launderette, won't you?

What? A launderette? Are you serious?

I am. What's the problem?

It's just... You're asking a lot, Clair, okay?

I don't do launderettes. Never have done, never will.

It's no place for a man like me.

Exposing your most intimate articles in front of strangers.

- Stop it, you're being ridiculous. - You know me, Clair. I'm sensitive.

I've never even bought toilet roll. All right, enough.

Jack, I've worked very hard getting your script to the right people and I'm afraid there's no interest.

I said nothing because I didn't want to disturb you. That's the reality.

I can't see any other options.

It's Humphries or bust.

I understand. Good.

Call and let me know how it goes, darling.

(DIALING TONE)

And so it was that I first came to hear the name Harvey Humphries.

I had sat in every head of scripts department in London, listening to these twats full of white wine and arugula, but I had never heard of this man.

"Harvey Humphries of Humbolt Mews."

I didn't like the sound of it.

The name seemed innocent enough, but there was something that jarred.

It might be the "Harvey Humphries Humbolt" bit that was worrying me.

But I had a friend, Garry Gordon in Garrick Street.

And he'd never caused me any problem.

No.

It was something stronger than just a repetition of the H.

It was more a sensation of having heard Harvey Humphries in some unsavory context.

Harvey.

It was the Harvey.

Harvey was the middle name of Dr. Hawley Harvey Crippen, the Yank Who'd spent all night in the basement of 39 Hilldrop Crescent, N5 separating his wife.

He'd done her in lime.

Crippen had come from America.

Humphries was going to America within hours of completing his business with me.

Was Humphries related to Crippen?

Far-fetched as it might seem to others, it was not impossible.

Crippen was an American. Yes.

And so was Humphries.

Surely it was more than a coincidence that a man going to America should be excited by a title like "Decades of Death" and have the middle name of one of the most famous killers of the lot.

No.

No, no, no.

Facts like that are beyond the realm of coincidence.

(HUMMING) (PHONE RINGING)

Hello? Who's there?

Speak up, I can't hear you.

(TOILET FLUSHES)

Oh, no. Clair's not here just now.

This is Irene.

You want what?

Harvey Humphries. Do you know of a man called Harvey Humphries?

Think carefully before you answer, please.

A man's life may be at stake. Oh, I'll have to think about this.

Er, hold on a minute, love. Now...

Can you tell her to call Jack back regarding Harvey?

Tell her it's a matter of life and death.

- Life and death? Yes. Tell her that exactly.

Thank you. - Right. Will do, dear.

Okay, okay. Be rational, be rational.

Clair was not in her office, so she must've telephoned you from home.

But as you don't have her private number and she's ex-directory, there's no way you can call her back.

I have to trust it was Clair, and that she meant no malice.

After all, she has no reason to wish me any harm.

She had no way of knowing a man related to a murderer.

Only a highly suspicious, paranoid cynic...

Or someone like me, with an eye for clues and patterns could possibly connect the dots.

Could see the truth staring him in the face.

That Harvey Humphries is in fact Hawley Harvey Crippen's grandson.

No more questions, Your Honor.

(BUZZ OF HELICOPTER) Ah!

Right. That does it.

Where's the superglue?

Right. You've done nothing but terrorise me for weeks.

And I've had enough. I've had enough.

Take that, and that, and that, and that.

Take that, take this, take this.

(GRUNTS)

Take that. You didn't expect that, did you?

Well, expect the unexpected, mate.

(DOOR BUZZER)

God, that's quick.

(DOOR BUZZER)

Hello? Anyone home?

(JACK) Yes? Hello?

Are you the gentleman in Flat 3?

Who is this?

Community Support Police Officer Perkins, sir.

Good evening. How can I help you?

Oh, no cause for alarm. Just a routine call, sir.

Some of the kids over on the estate said you might be in some distress.

How interesting.

And what might I be distressed about?

Well, I have no idea, sir.

Are you in any distress?

No, I'm fine. I'm about to do some washing and then go to bed.

Oh, well. Just so you know, we're out on the beat if you ever need assistance.

I'm just across the road.

Jesus Christ.

Sorry, sir, sorry. Sorry. I was just checking you were...

Yeah, well, I'm very sorry to bother you, sir.

Er, I'll let you get back to your laundry.

Policeman, my ass.

He was looking for something.

What was he up to?

Jesus, nowhere's safe.

Okay, Humphries, you want my script? You can have it.

If it means I finally get paid decent money and get out of Hackney, you're on.

Right. Where's my wardrobe?

I'll show you, Clair, I'll show you, Catherine, exactly what I am capable of. Oh!

(FLIES BUZZING) Jesus Christ.

God. These aren't clothes, this is refuse.

I might as well take it and dig it in around the roses.

I'd do anything for a break right now, but not the launderette.

Not for Humphries, not for any other man.

Why should I? I've got everything I need here.

I've got water, I've got soap, I've got drying facilities.

I can do this, Jack.

No more sleepless nights, no more scuttling around in the dark.

We'll meet this monster head-on. Well-armed and well-dressed.

A quick thrash in the tub for you, my lovelies, then into the drier.

Right. A good 15 minutes on regular nine for the socks, five minutes less for the pants, and we'll play the shirt by ear.

Now, that's cooking with gas.

Here's how to play it. When you get to the meeting, refuse to sit down.

Refuse all drinks and cigarettes. Certainly all food.

The meeting will be standing up.

And if he leaves the room to make a call, you go with him.

(PHONE RINGING)

I'll have a pretext for everything.

I could take an apple or an onion into the meeting.

Yeah, that'd work.

I could use it as a circumstance to show him my carving knife.

Ah! Ah!

Ah! Ah! Ah! Ah!

Argh!


Come on. Come on, come on.

AOW!

Fuck. What the fuck am I supposed to do now?

Cut my fucking hand off?

(JACK WITH AMERICAN ACCENT) That's correct, officer.

When I saw the knife, I simply defended myself with the ice pick.

I have no idea how the pick got stuck in the back of his neck.

I put him in the bathtub because the blood was staining my Persian carpet.

Oh!

(CREAKING)

Argh!

Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh! Oh!

Oh! Oh!

(GRUNTS)

I'm not dead yet, you bastards.

(SIGHS)

Come on, Jack, we can still do this.

Against the odds, we can beat them.

Now, as I remember, this thing has some seriously deep pockets.

Oh, yeah, yeah. Yeah, I can hide a knife in there.

That's like Loch Ness in there.

You could hide a whole submarine in there if you wanna.

I'll just keep my coat on. My hand on my ha'penny.

Okay, don't let this guy psyche you out, all right?

You're a writer, Jack, remember?

You can just outwit this two-bit Hollywood gangster.

Gangster?

Say she didn't throw it away. Please, please, please.

Be in here. Be in here, be in here.

Where are you? Where are you?

(CHUCKLES)

"Uzilicious". My definitive gangsta rap compilation.

Yeah, yeah.

I remember I wooed Catherine with this shit.

Hope it still works.

#Ass, tits, cunt, fuck, motherfucker... #

Good times, old friend. Good times.

If you can get me through college, you can get me through anything.

(BELL TOLLS AND CLASSICAL MUSIC MELDING INTO RAP)

I drop a old-school beat.

Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, you wanna read my script, bitch?

You wanna polish my script? You wanna polish my script?

Is that what you're saying?

What's up, bitch? You wanna polish my script?

Oh, sure. Polish this, motherfucker.

I'm gonna step up to a man called Humphries Wipe that shit up just like cream cheese Up all night, y'all, workin' the mic, y'all Smoking my pipe, y'all, motherfucker

(JACK) Catherine, this jam goes out to you.

It's real, true dat from the heart.

I just wanna say you're my girl.

- Shut up. - And I love you.

Fuck.

Who are you trying to fool, Jack? You're not a G-man, you're a tit.

(SNIFFS)

What's that smell?

Smells like burning garbage.

No! Not the socks! Not the socks!

Argh! Damn it!

Oh!

Oh! Oh, my eyes!

Ah, ah.

Oh, God, the pants have gone up.

(CLAIR) And you'll have to go to the launderette, won't you?

- A launderette, are you serious? - Of course I am.

You'll have to go to the launderette, won't you?

(ECHOES) You'll have to go to the launderette.

Argh!

(UPBEAT MUSIC AND CLAPPING)

(PHONE RINGS) Okay, let's cut the cake.

Dad, can you answer that? It's Mr. Goofy. He's lost.

Mr. Goofy is on my office line?

Right, here we go.

Hello. This is Dr. Friedkin.

You've got to help me, Dr. Friedkin.

Jack? Is this Jack?

I can't take it anymore. I'm gonna buckle, I swear to God.

Well, it's my grandson's birthday.

A phobia of launderettes?

Oh, Jack. That's a new one to me.

Wait, I'm confused. Which case study is this?

It's not a case, Dr. Friedkin. It's me.

I'm the problem. It's me.

Okay, okay, calm down. Just calm yourself.

Jack, I want you to take a deep breath.

Now, inhale... and exhale. That's right.

Fill your entire body.

Imagine every cell being rinsed clean with life-giving oxygen.

Do you have any clues where the origin of this phobia lies?

I've had it all my life.

I've tried to get on top of it.

I went to a washhouse when I was at college, but I was just so terrified, I accidentally trapped my load in an OOO.

An OOO?

Yes. An out of order machine.

I was in there with about six months' of unimaginably sensitive material.

The room gathered round, engineers were called.

It was a nightmare. No. I sympathize with you.

As unpleasant as the experience may have been it cannot have been traumatic enough to create such a phobia.

It's ruining my life.

Look, I can help you, but you must be completely honest.

And you must trust me.

Close your eyes.

I want you to take another deep breath and imagine you are sitting here with me now in my office having a consultation.

Think of my office like a space capsule.

From here, we can go anywhere in the universe, in space and time, by the power of our mind.

To your childhood, to your dreams.

Can you see the little hedgehog?

Frightened little hedgehog lives in an old hedgerow by the church. Can you see the spider?

Clever spider. Waiting in the shadows.

And Mrs. Ladybird? And Mr. Rabbit?

- How about old farmer...? - (BLEEPING)

(FAST BLEEPING)

(SCREAMING)

Did you have a happy childhood?

What is your earliest memory? The orphanage on fire.

You're being facetious. No, I'm not, really.

The orphanage I was in caught fire. November the 5th, 1979.

Somebody let off a Roman candle in the dormitory.

Luckily no one was hurt.

You're an orphan? I'm sorry, I didn't...

My mother abandoned me when I was 5 years old.

She just packed a little suitcase for me one day and disappeared.

How did it happen, Jack?

It's all right to feel vulnerable. These pyjamas aren't helping.

Try, Jack.

Try to go back.

The only memory I have of my mother is of a book she gave me.

Fairy tales I suppose you call them. With these awful talking rodents.

Look, truth is it doesn't bother me.

I don't miss my mother because I don't remember her.

I just... I'm sick of these irrational fears.

Like the bloody launderette. It's stopping me from living my life.

Well, you can do something about it. You're not a child anymore.

I once treated a girl who had a phobia of bananas.

When this girl came to me, she was so pleased with herself.

She'd been able to overcome her phobia to the extent that she could sit in the same room as a closed banana.

It had to stay closed, unzipped, or else she'd go completely psychotic.

But the point is, open or closed, she had not made the connection between her phobia and her fear.

Of bananas? No. It was something else.

A past trauma. Something more threatening than a mere banana.

Do you understand? It's like a movie screen.

She projected her fear onto the banana because looking directly at her trauma was too terrifying.

It was a projection.

Onto a piece of fruit? Exactly.

Her banana's no different to your launderette.

I also have a recurring nightmare about an eyeball.

What sort of eyeball? The giant, floating kind.

Sort of eye of death, watching me.

All fears and neurosis can be traced back to our early childhood.

To the first terrifying recognition that we are alone in the world.

When a child is abandoned, it has no concept of time.

No understanding that things can get better.

That there is hope. For a child, Jack, mother equals life.

Take away the mother and the child is literally swallowed by death.

But I didn't die, did I?

No. You lived.

To experience your own death.

That's some scary shit, Dr. Friedkin.

It's the primal trauma we are all trying to forget.

To bury in our subconscious.

But it inevitably finds expression either in dreams or fears or infantile fantasies. (KNOCKING)

(WOMAN) Dad? How much longer are you gonna be in there?

Just finishing up, sweet pea. I'm sorry, Jack. We have to end now.

I don't know how to thank you, Dr. Friedkin.

Perhaps as a teenager, you were subliminally drawn to that OOO, because somewhere deep in your subconscious, you recognised that you, too, are out of order.

Broken. You don't work anymore.

The primary defence mechanisms you relied on to get you through childhood no longer support you as an adult.

I'm sorry.

You're fucked up, Jack. You need therapy.

I haven't got time. I've got a meeting.

Return to the scene of the crime and retrieve those unwashed articles locked in the machine.

Release your raw, true, inner self.

Begin a new life, free from fear.

Fear of death.

The irony is we must all journey through Hades before we can reach our heaven.

Dr. Friedkin, I think it's time I faced my banana.

(UPBEAT ROCK MUSIC)

Ooh! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

(PANTING)

(HORN BLASTS)

Oh. Oh.

It's step-up time, yo, motherfucker.

(ICE CUBE'S THE WRONG NIGGA TO FUCK WITH)

# Goddamn, it's a brand new payback

# From the straight gangsta mack in straight gangsta black

# How many motherfuckers gotta pay

# Went to the shelf and dusted off the AK

# Caps gotta get peeled

# 'Cause the nigga you love to hate still can kill at will

# It ain't no pop 'cause that sucks

# And you can new Jack swing on my nuts

# Fuck R 'n' B and the running man

# I'm the one that stand with the gun in hand

# Make sure before you buck with duck quick

# Punk, 'cause I'm the wrong nigger to fuck with, fuck with

# Hell, yes, it's on, you better tell them

# Ice Cube and I'm rolling with the motherfuckin' LM

# It's the number one crew in the area

# Make a move for your gat and I'll bury you

# Ashes to ashes, dirt to dirt

# Punks roll when I put in work

# 'Cause Lench mob niggas are the craziest

# And y'all motherfuckers can't fade my shit

# South Central, that's where the Lench mob dwell

# Hittin' fools up with the big ass!

# One time can't hold me back

# Sweatshirt, khakis and... #

It's all right, mate. It's all right.

What the fuck?

Everything all right, sir?

Yes. Yes, I'm fine, thank you.

Looks like you're in a hurry. Yes, well, I have an appointment.

With death.

Excuse me? I mean, with the launderette.

I'm going to wash some socks.

There's no crime in that, is there? Not that I'm aware of.

Good. Well, I'll be on my way, then. Good night.

Good night.

(JACK) Keep it together, keep it together.

It's only a banana. It's not him you're afraid of, it's only...

(RUMBLE OF TRAIN)

Okay. Stick to the plan.

If I move fast, I can get in and out in half an hour.

That leaves 20 minutes to change and get a taxi north.

No room for error.

"Everything automatic. One, open the door.

"Two, get the clothes in.

"Three, shut the door and have two pound coins ready.

"Four, place the money in the slot.

"Five, push your slot in."

Great.

How do I manage it?

I've managed to create a bad impression. I'm still in the street.

Okay. Okay, you can do this. You can do this.

(GASPS)

(UPBEAT VIETNAMESE MUSIC)


(JACK) Looks like my lucky day.

Only four people and no visible infants.

There, look.

The atmosphere's easing a little. I'm blending in.

Okay, so far so good. I'm already up to number three.

"Shut the door, have two pound coins ready.

"Four, put the money in. Five..."

Shit. These signs are older than the machines.

What do I do now?

Heavy soil.

(BREATHES OUT) Jesus, it's over.

All I have to do is stand in front of it until the things come out clean.

(JINGLE BELLS RING TONE)

(Speaks Vietnamese)

(JACK) I need to check out those drying machines.

Interesting. It appears the technique is to open the door and grab the dry things as they fly past.

So more heat gets concentrated into bulkier items such as woollens.

While at the same time anything fragile are spared unnecessary exposure.

I'll have to remember that for my shirt.

Wait.

Something's wrong.

I'm spinning without a problem, but mine's different to the others.

What is this? I can't afford a hitch.

Excuse me.

Mine hasn't gone white yet. What hasn't?

My washing water. Look.

You didn't put no soap in.

I thought the machine did it. Machine don't put own soap in.

You have to put soap in. Where your soap?

I haven't got any. It says everything's automatic.

See number six, "Add detergent."

No.

What am I gonna do?

It's not gonna get washed, is it? Not without soap.

(JACK) I've done it again. How is it possible to keep putting things into machines without getting them clean?

Look here. Have you got any soap?

Soap in slot machine one pound.

(MUTTERS IN VIETNAMESE)

Here, soap.

Thanks.

(SPEAKS VIETNAMESE)

Not now.

You cannot put soap in now, you've missed your cycle.

You wait.

Tell me when to put the soap. No. I'm in hurry to go home.

So am I.

You haven't been here since 8:00 this morning.

What've you got in there?

A shirt and some socks. That's it?

There's a pair in there as well. A pair?

A pair of underpants?

That's all you put in machine? I'm allowed to, aren't I?

You can put in a handkerchief for all I care.

But I think it's a criminal waste of water.

(GIGGLES NERVOUSLY) Sorry. How right you are.

In fact in a funny way, crime is the only reason I'm here.

I'm going home. It's half past seven.

Actually it's 7:20. But if I'd been in here since 8:00, I'd have started lying about more than the time to get out.

We'll miss out the drying. Yeah, I agree.

(JACK) I've missed my cycle.

Will it still get clean?

I'm gonna have to chance it. I'm cutting it fine as it is.

And why do I seem to be the only one with a machine that refuses to stop spinning?

Those two are beginning to annoy me.

Especially the one in the rollers who looks like Caligula.

She's obviously the ring leader.

What the hell are they staring at?

I imagine they live pretty mundane lives here in these launderettes, but even so.

It's over. I'm free. Get me out of here.

(UPBEAT SITAR MUSIC)


Oh, no. A beautiful girl.

That's the last thing I need.

It's bad enough shifting underwear with these louts.

Now I'm gonna have to do it with her watching.

Better be discrete, it's down to the dryers now.

I'll just hang back here.

Hope the beautiful girl doesn't notice my presence.

She's trying to block my view of her dryer.

What does she think I am? A Peeping Tom?

Jesus. The size of that. I've never seen anything like it.

And another. That thing must have "Dunlap" written on it.

Oh, thanks. Thanks very much.

That's just downright impolite.

Listen, darling, I don't wanna look at your fucking underwear.

Might excite the gentlemen in your life, but as far as I'm concerned it's about as sexy as a couple of buckets, which is what it looks like.

I look like something out of a horror movie.

All those little ruptured blonde hairs.

My head looks like a Swede's scrotum.

No wonder they've been watching me. I look horrifying.

I'm a monster.

What to do?

I've still got half an hour.

I could go to the service station, get some big sunglasses.

Yeah. Yeah.

Yeah, it could work.

Yeah, motherfucker. Hood up.

Right, I've gotta get out of here. And quick.

A bit of dampness never hurt anybody.


Forget them. They're lost forever.

Just get the sock and the shirt.

Excuse me.

Are these yours?

No.

No. Nothing to do with me.

Are they yours? They're his. I saw them come out.

Excuse me. What's your name? John.

My name is John. Then they are yours.

It's embroidered inside on a little tab.

Yes. Yes, they are. They are mine, yes.

Lent them to somebody, long time ago.

Not sure how they got into my wash actually.

Don't you want them? No.

No. No, thank you.

I don't want them. Throw them in the bin, love.

Yes, thank you. You've been very kind.

Look out. He's got a blade.

(SCREAMS)

It's not what it looks like. I'm not gonna hurt anybody. Really.

I'm a professional writer. For television. Don't go.

Call the cops! Please.

Call the cops! No, no. Stop, stop, stop.

Argh!

Go. Get.

(SCREAMS) Where's the cops?

(YELLING)

Go that way. Take that route, gotta get that next one.

(GROANING)

(DISTANT SHOUTING)

Half past.

I've still got 20 minutes.

Back off. Please, I can explain.

Let me out. I can explain. No way. Go on, stay back.

Look, I know I look weird, but I'm a writer.

I don't normally look like this and I certainly don't wanna use this knife.

Please, I have a really important meeting.

Not interested, mate, okay? And I said back off.

There must be another way out of here.

(JINGLE BELLS RING TONE)

Jen.

They're coming. They're coming.

Hang on, I can hear the sirens.

Hurry up. He's trying to get out. Come on, Clair.

Come on, pick up, pick up. Come on, Clair. Pick up, pick up.

Come on. (APPROACHING SIRENS)

Oh.

You say he threatened you? I'll say he's sick as a pig.

Stand by. We got a nutter. Hurry. He's trying to get away.

Okay, stand back.

Roger. About to apprehend said knife man. Over.

Positions.

Follow. Follow. Follow.

I'm in. Right.

Yeah. I can't see him.

Dryers clear, sarge. Dryers clear.

No visuals. No visuals. No visuals.

Where is he? Is this the right launderette?

Covered. Stay still!

What should I do? Come on, stay still!

All right, sonny. Drop the knife.

Now. Drop the knife. Step forward.

Hands up where we can see them!

I'm not here to hurt anybody.

I'm a professional writer.

Drop the knife, don't give me no mumbo.

Mumbo? Mumbo jumbo.

Well, it's stuck. You heard. Drop it.

We want the knife, bitch.

Be my guest. Tase him.

Ow... Aaargh!

# I'll see you in my dreams

# Hold you in my dreams

# Though you are gone

# I can see you standing

# Right before me

# Though the pain I cannot feel

# So well

# Lips that once were mine

# Tender eyes that shine

# Someone took you

# Out of my arms

# Still I feel the thrill of your charms

# They will light my way tonight

# I'll see you

# I'll see you in my dreams #

(WPC) This way please, sir.

All right back off, sonny, back off. Out of the way.

Help him get that off. I can't take him anywhere with that.

Okay, this way, sir.

Sir, you do not have to say anything.

Anything you do say may be given in evidence.

He wants locking up, that boy.

Lock him up. It's not me you should be after.

It's this bastard in North London, Harvey...

That's blinding. All right.

Filming for "Beat Cops", mate. It's gonna be on TV.

Anything you wanna say?

No. Go away. This is my life. This is not some excuse for cheap TV.

Aow! You're being very brave.

Bugger off. You got what you want.

Sarge, look, I set fire to myself before I came out then I glued this knife to my hand.

You threatened the ladies. I didn't.

They say you did. I really didn't.

Please, can you tell them. I didn't, did I?

No. He just sort of got it out.

He can tell us all about it down the station.

Right. He is done. Okay, everyone.

It's over. Go back to your homes.

Safety has been restored.

Thank you, everyone. See you later.

Load him up. Wait. I'm innocent.

Look, I've got a meeting this evening. Tell him I'm safe.

Enough or I'll do you for resisting arrest.

I'm a victim of circumstance.

All units, Mare Street. Go. Go. Go.

Sarge? Little Vietnam, big trouble.

What do we do with Paddington?

Take him. Chuck him in the van. Hey, no way. I've got a meeting.

Come on, then! Shake a leg!

Follow that chopper!

Oh, for Pete's sake. Mirror, signal, manoeuvre.

(WPC) Shut up! I am driving this truck.

(SIREN)

Looks like they let you go after all.

You're free.

Free.

It's fate.

I'm facing my demons.

And I'm winning.

I'm free.

Come on, stars! Give me your best shot.

I'm ready.

Let's do this.

Oops. (LAUGHS NERVOUSLY)

Evening, sir. Sorry, officer.

Something funny, sir? No, I'm just happy.

Happy? Are you drunk, sir?

No, I'm a writer. Oh, yeah?

I'm on my way to meet a Hollywood movie mogul actually.

You're kidding? He's very interested...

...in buying my script about serial killers.

You don't say. Are you all right? Did you get your laundry done?

No. Maybe another night.

Oh, well. Well, good night then, miss.

Night, sir.

(Professor Friedkin) You must return to the scene of the crime and retrieve those unwashed articles in the machine.

Release your raw, true, inner self.

Begin a new life, free from fear.

Okay. Okay, I got this.

Dr. Friedkin, one banana signed, peeled and...

Huh? (DOOR CREAKING)

(UPBEAT FUNKY MUSIC)


(BLEEPING)

(BREATH ES HEAVILY)

(GROANING)

(GRUNTS)

(BOTH GRUNT)

(WHINES)

Oh, my God, what happened? I don't know.

(MOANS) How do we get out of here?

(BOTH GRUNT INCOMPREHENSIBLY)

Oh, my God, what happened? How did we get here?

(PANTS)

I was walking down the road.

Yeah, I was walking down the alley and I heard a noise and...

Oh, God, I feel sick.

Oh, my God. I have to let my parents know I'm here.

They'll panic, they'll panic. I don't want them to panic.

(GRUNTS) What's that?

You're gonna heave? (GRUNTS)

You can't leave? I can't breathe.

Oh, you can't breathe. I'm so sorry.

(GAGS)

Thank you.

They must have drugged us and dumped us here.

Who? Who did this?

The Vietnamese mafia. Think about it. We're still in the launderette.

It's some sort of safe house. They caught me snooping and thought, ..."Let's tie him up and dump him." Oh, my God.

No, no, no. It doesn't add up. It doesn't add up at all.

They might have suspected me, but you were no threat whatsoever.

What are you saying?

It must've been premeditated. We've been abducted by a psychopath whose intention is to terrorise, torture and terminate our existence.

No. What do you mean, no?

No, I refuse to believe that. What about mistaken identity, huh?

This could all be a practical joke.

A joke? Are you out of your mind?

No, you're paranoid. You're jumping to conclusions.

There is a time and place for accusing a man of being paranoid.

This is not fucking one of them!

Help! Help us, please! Help, please!

'Help! Help us, please! 'Help! Help, please!

Please! Somebody, help us!

(FOOTSTEPS)

Listen.

(FOOTSTEPS)

Somebody's up there.

What do we do?

(FOOTSTEPS APPROACHING)

(SOBS)

Mummy. (DOOR BEING UNLOCKED)

(MOANS)

Hello?

What's going on down here, then? Oh, mate.

Are you all right?

Mate, I have never been so happy to see a...

Community support police officer. Community support police officer.

Quickly untie us. Come down, please.

No. Shit. No. Don't. Go back up. Get some help.

Get some backup. Right.

We're trapped. We are trapped.

He can see that. Don't leave!

If they come back, they'll get him too.

He's police. He's not even armed.

They haven't even given him a fucking whistle.

Listen, mate, go and get some help.

Get some men with guns and the dogs.

And some dogs with guns and a fucking helicopter. Just go. Go.

(SIGHS)

On second thought, I think I'll just stay here with you.

Very cosy. Just the three of us.

The criminal stare.

What's he doing?

I'm afraid this is one very sick community support police officer.

Very good.

You know, you can't beat these old machines for sheer craftsmanship.

Front loading, motor power, elegant design.

Admittedly, they don't spin as fast as modern machines do, but so what?

As Mahatma Gandhi said, "There's more to life

"than simply increasing its speed."

Looking at this washing machine, you'd have to agree with him.

I mean, it's a bloody work of art.

I said, it's a work of art. Don't you agree?

Yes, it's very nice.

Right, well, take comfort in that, because it's the last thing you're gonna see before you die.

If you both look closely, you'll notice a pea green flashing light.

Which means, that while you were both sleeping this machine has already passed smoothly through the stages of pre-wash and main wash and is now completing the last rinse.

(BANGING)

Ow.

This will shortly be followed by the magnificent final spin at which point, the cycle will end, the light will turn red...

and I shall have the pleasure of sending you both to a better and, one would hope, cleaner world than this.

You fucking maniac.

I was just gonna go home and catch some telly.

But when you mentioned you were a writer, about serial killers, I thought, "No. No, this is meant to be.

"This is fate."

What do you call yourself? What's that?

What do you call yourself? The Spin King? Laundry Man?

No, I'm the Hanoi Handshake. That's me.

After I kill you, I'm going to chop your fingers off and pin it on the Vietnamese lot.

WW? Why are you doing this?

Oh, well, it's complicated.

You see, this launderette used to belong to my grandmother.

That is, before the whole neighbourhood went to Pot.

Pol Pot.

No, the boat people elbowed her out. Broke her heart. Killed her.

So I'm on a rampage, a rampage of vengeance.

Oh, I see.

Anyway, that's not important now.

What is important is that I've got the key, and no one knows we're here.

So then, if you don't mind, I've just got to quickly go upstairs and sharpen my knife.

Sit tight, kids.

And remember, when the light goes red, you're dead.

(BLEEPING)

(WHIRRING AND SPLASHING)

Hm, the rinse is ending.

(LAUGHS)

Oh, that's it then, isn't it?

Not only am I not gonna make my meeting with Harvey Humphries, I'm gonna fucking die. (SOBS LOUDLY)

Hey, stop it.

You mustn't lose hope.

There's no hope. We're dead.

There is always hope.

I was abandoned in a launderette as a child.

I couldn't speak for six weeks, I was so afraid.

I've come full circle.

I'm alive, alive to experience my own death.

It's destiny.

No!

(JACK IN DISTANCE) No! No! No!


(BREATH ES HEAVILY)

Listen, your mother, she gave up on herself, not on you.

You don't make the same mistake.

We can do it together.

Come on, we have to try and reason with him.

There's always hope.

I don't even know your name.

Sangeet. My name is Sangeet.

Sangeet.

That's a very beautiful name.

Sangeet, do you think if all this blows over, you and I might perhaps get some dinner or...?

That's the spirit, John.

(DOOR OPENING)

He)'-

Call me Jack.

(MUSIC; EUROPE'S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN)

Those about to die, we salute you.

# It's the final countdown

# The final countdown

# on, hey #

What's wrong? Not your cup of tea?

But how can you not like this?

This is top-notch. This is classic rock.

Er, no.

Technically, this is '80s hair metal.

What?

Right.

I'll have you know that that track was number one in 25 separate countries in 1986. 25.

Now, I think that qualifies it as an all-time rock classic. Don't you?

Yeah. Well, we had different childhoods, mate.

While you were jumping around in your bedroom to men in tights, I was keeping it fresh, rolling with the brothers, you know what I'm saying, y'all?

Dusting off my AK, motherfucker. Well, you missed out.

You don't know what you're talking about anyway.

I used to lie over there, on my bed with my headphones on.

And I'd just disappear into my imagination.

Gran always said I had a very vivid imagination.

Oh, I could be anyone.

Sometimes I'd be this rock star, half man, half elf, with this great mane of golden hair, down to my waist and all the girls would be yelling, "Oh, Tony. Let me touch it, Tony. Let me touch it. Let me touch it."

This was your bedroom?

Eh? You had a bed down here?

Oh, mate.

Me and this launderette go way back.

(KILLER) You see, my mum died when I was quite young and I didn't have any other family, so I was sent to live with my gran.

At the launderette.

She took me in, bless her heart, and looked after me, but she decided there wasn't enough room for two people upstairs in the flat.

So she made me a room down here.

Down in the cellar.

It was, well...

It took a bit of getting used to.

But she only locked the hatch very late at night.

And I was allowed out, to see the people coming and going.

To watch them wash.

You.

Oh, Tony, you poor thing.

What do you mean? Poor thing?

You were abandoned, Tone.

Mate, I had this whole massive bedroom to myself.

This is a cellar, Tone. A cellar.

But... Look, it's Dickensian.

How big was your fucking bedroom? That's not the point.

Jesus. What kind of woman keeps a child in a cellar?

Hey, don't you say a word about my gran.

My gran was a very special person.

That's the kid talking.

Any mother, even a twisted hag bitch of a mother is better than no mother.

Come on, Tone. You were dumped. Alone. In a cellar.

Yeah, all right, thank you very much, Sigmund Freud.

You're the one tied up in a basement.

I'm the one feeding the press. Baffling the police.

I'm conducting the whole thing like an orchestra.

I'm like the André Previn of serial killers.

Mate, I have studied serial killers and you are not it.

A serial killer is an artist. Hey, I'm all about elegant design.

Tell them, Gran. I am an artist, aren't I?

I'm like a sculptor, sculpting in crime.

Don't tell me you've got your bloody grandmother down here too.

Well, of course I have. I'm a serial killer, aren't I?

It's been done, mate! Come up with something original.

I did the Hanoi Handshake!

Sounds like two Vietnamese gentlemen in a public convenience!

He's right. It does, actually.

"Can I give you a handshake? I give you handshake."

Please! Have some bloody respect, will you?

That's it.

Spin's started. (SANGEET) No!

(SANGEET) No! Don't!

(TONY) Shut it! Shut up! Shut up!

(SANJEET) No! Try making fun of this, dead man.

Say hello to my bowie knife. I call him Dave.

David the Bowie Knife? Sounds like a character from my stories.

Dave doesn't like you. (JACK SOBS)

He's telling me to do it.

I'm gonna do it.

You can't reason with a serial killer.

(TONY GROANS)

Oh, Jack. Just go, go, go. Please go, go, go.

Go on, go. Go get help. Hop. Hop! Hop.

Hop. Hop. Hop.

Run!

(SCREAMS) Sorry. I am sorry.

(DISTANT SCREAMING)

(JACK) No, Tony. (TONY) No, I can't let you go.

I'm sorry. I'm really sorry. This is how it has to end.

Tony, please, leave her alone. Sorry, mate, she saw me with you.

No turning back now. Jack. Jack.

Do something. Please. What? What?

You're a writer, aren't you? Tell him a fucking story.

A story? Right, this is it.

No, wait. No, she's right. Let me tell you a story.

A story? Yes, please.

It's a dead man's last wish.

It's a story to end the cycle.

How long's it going to take? Not long.

Because I haven't got long. Neither have I.

(BOTH CHUCKLE)

Oh, all right, dead man.

But make it good because it's the last thing you're gonna write.

Yeah, yeah. No pressure, though.

Okay. I have to start right at the beginning.

Once upon a time, there was a hedgehog whose name...

A hedgehog?

Yes. Yes. Whose name...

You're about to die and you want to tell a story about a hedgehog?

Mate, please, just bear with me.

Okay, you sitting comfortably?

Once upon a time... not so long ago... there was a hedgehog... whose name...

was Brian.

Brian lived in a cave deep in the forest, a dark and terrible place called the Wyrd Wild Wood.

After dark, the forest would echo with howls and screams.

And sometimes it seemed to Brian as if even the moon conspired against him.

But the more afraid Brian became, the angrier he got, until one night, frightened out of his wits... he turned himself into a terrifying monster.

He put on weight, painted his face and started insisting on being addressed as Balthazar the Berserker.

But then a strange thing happened.

Brian received an unexpected visitor.

"Come any closer and I'll scratch your eyes out."

He snarled angrily at the flickering eyes in the trees.

"Brian?" Whispered a voice.

"Is that really you?"

"Who the fuck are you calling Brian?" said Brian, as menacingly as he could manage. "Why, Brian, it is you."

It was Harold, his brother, last seen by the road, walking with mother a long time ago.

He said, "I'm so happy I found you, Brian, old chap.

"I've been terribly lonely and fancied a chat."

But Brian had crossed that road and never looked back.

He'd erased the memory and his soul was now black.

"Harold, mate. I hate to be blunt.

But look in the mirror, you prickly idiot.

You're a worthless, pathetic, sniveling fool.

"I'd rather spend time with the worms in my stool."

With that he chased him into the trees and over the dells, screaming, "I'll eat you for supper or meet you in hell."

(SPAGHETTI WESTERN TYPE MUSIC)


But fate intervened and Brian got lost.

And to make matters worse, there was a treacherous fog.

"Hello, " he cried. "Is anyone there?"

But no one replied, and Brian got scared.

And that's when he saw he wasn't alone.

A small, crumpled body was lying in the road.

"Why didn't you leave me?" said Brian.

"And just let me die?"

"You're my brother," said Harold. "How on earth could I?"

And that's when they heard the pitiful cries of a very small hedgehog whose mother just died.

And suddenly Brian just started to blub.

He picked up the babe and gave it a hug.

"This little thing, you know, reminds me of us.

"Left all alone when Mum caught that bus."

"The spell has been broken," said Harold.

"It's time to break free. You're not really a monster.

"You're a hedgehog, like me."

(SOFT SOBBING)

(SNIFFING)

(SOBS SOFTLY)

I tell you what, that is a beautiful story.

I suppose they... Adopted the baby hedgehog. Yes.

Oh, mate.

It's symbolic. You see, they discovered their true selves.

They start again where they left off before the trauma of losing their mum.

I tell you, that was my life, right there in that cave.

I'm not a monster, am I?

No. You just need some help.

I'll let you into a secret. I'm not even a proper serial killer.

That Vietnamese bloke, the one in the marshes, I didn't kill him.

What? No, he must've tripped and fell.

He was dead when I found him.

Yeah, but the fingers, the Hanoi Handshake?

Oh, yeah, yeah. I did do that.

Well, otherwise, he was just a bloke in a ditch.

Oh, her? It's just a mannequin.

I found her in a bin outside Topshop.

So you're not a killer, then.

You're like me.

We were both abandoned.

We're the same.

We're like...

Yes. Brothers.

(JINGLE BELLS RING TONE)

Er, it's... It's not mine. I just... I picked it up.

(DOOR OPENS)

Brother?

Help. Help.

"So Harold and his long-lost brother Brian

"lived happily afterwards in the old hedgerow beside the churchyard."

And remember, no matter how dark and scary those woods may seem, there's a way across the road for a hedgehog brave enough to cross it.

Thank you. (APPLAUSE)

Hey. Hey, hi.

You look fantastic. Thank you.

That was a wonderful story.

Congratulations. Perfect synthesis of Jungian and Freudian thought.

Harold's lost self is recovered, whilst acknowledging the important role that the false self played in surviving the terror of abandonment.

Well, it's all credit to you, Professor Friedkin.

Next book, Harold must address his destructive Oedipal complex and help Brian with his tendency towards malignant anal hoarding.

Darling, I've brought someone I think you should finally meet.

Harvey Humphries.

You. You never came to see me, did you?

Oh, you are a very, very naughty boy.

Harvey's still very interested in "Decades of Death", Jack.

Maybe you two can get together and discuss it later?

(SINISTER VOICE) Can you see the spider?

And the farmer in his field?

Can you see the lovely ladybird?

And what about the little frightened hedgehog?

Jack?

Jack.

Are you all right?

Er, yes, sorry.

Hey, what about that dinner you promised me?

Erm, I'll get back to you, okay, on the whole thing.

I'll think about it. I will. Call me.

Absolutely.

Congratulations. Thank you.

Congratulations. Thank you, thank you.

Thank you.

(JACK) Once upon a time, there was a hedgehog called Harold, who one day set out on a journey.

When he reached the far side of the wood, he came to a large flowing river, dancing with speckled light.

Without a moment's hesitation, Harold threw himself into the water.

The current carried him far away and he was never seen again.

Morning. Morning, you two. Morning, madam.

Bye, then.


What a fucking...

Twat. Cock.

Fucking dickhead. Wanker.

(TIRES SCREECH)