I, Madman (1989) Script

Evening, Dr. Kessler.

Front desk.

Yes, ma'am.

We'll certainly check it out.

-Right away. -Problem, Lyle?

Miss Wells in 413.

She claims there are animal noises coming from the room next door.

She thinks it might be a dog.

-She says it's keeping her awake. -Are you going to check it out?

That's Dr. Kessler's room.

You know how he feels about people going into his room when he's not in there.

He hasn't had--

The man is a weirdo, Lyle, and a troublemaker.

And if he is keeping an animal, he'll be out on the street before morning.


Oh, God!

Good God!

It's a child!

Lyle, it's me.

Call the police.

Just do it.



Hi, I'm not here right now. So after the beep, leave your name... number, and a brief message and I'll try and get back to you. Thanks.

Hello, Richard, it's me, Virginia.

I just thought, maybe, you'd like to come over for a beer or something.

I thought maybe you'd be home, but....

I'll be up for a while.

So if you get home before... you know, too late, just give me a call. Okay?


Who is it?

Police. Open up.

Richard. Come on up.


Are you okay?

Yeah, why?

You sounded a little agitated on the phone.


That was just my phone voice.

Can I get you a beer or something?

Yeah, I'd love a cold beer.

Then why don't you just go sit in there and I'll go get it for you.

"Much of Madness, More of Sin"?

"Tortured and ridiculed by the scientific establishment...

"for his investigations into the creation of superior life forms...

"noted zoologist Dr. Alan Kessler...

"continues his experiments...

"in the cloaked secrecy of his basement laboratory.

"Finally, after years of failure and frustration...

"he manages to successfully mate his own seed with an egg excised...

"from the ovaries of a jackal...

"and plants it in the womb of an unwitting human surrogate."

A little light reading?

So, scared yourself again and lured me over with a cold beer...

-so you wouldn't have to be alone? -You caught me.

Honey, how can you read this crap?

I don't know. It's some thing....

It's like potato chips, I just can't stop.

Potato chips?

I don't know, this one was different. It was really special.

-Very well written. -I'll bet.

What happens?

-With what? -The book.

How does it end?

The surrogate dies in delivery.

Dr. Kessler has to raise the creature as his own son.

But it's an evil, wild thing.

And he can't control it.

I know the feeling.

One night, somebody... lets the jackal boy escape.

And Dr. Kessler goes out looking for it, and he hunts it down.

Corners it in an alley.

And he begs it to come home with him.

But it hates him.

It hates him for bringing it into this world.

It turns...

and it leaps, and screaming in agony....

I don't see what the problem is. It's not like he asked you to marry him.

-Yeah, well.... -Excuse me.

We've only been seeing each other for six weeks.

He already wants me to meet his parents over Christmas.

Crimson Falls, Ohio.

I don't know, sounds like a pre-proposal to me.


Excuse me.

I think I'll take these.

All I know is, if I had a guy like Richard on the line...

I'd reel him in.

Yeah, I can see you in a muumuu and curlers... scrambling up eggs for your husband.

You don't know it, but deep down underneath this chic, cosmopolitan savvy... beats the heart of a submissive hausfrau.

Richard's really special, but I think I'll just take it slow.

All I'm saying is, if I had Mr. Right...

I'd be home packing my bags for Crimson Falls.

You're sure not gonna meet him putting in 14 hours a day at this dump.

Maybe not. But I'm more likely to run into a gorgeous guy... in a bookstore than a smart guy in a singles bar.

Hi, Mona!


Then again, I could just kill myself.

What the hell are you looking for?

I'm looking for this book called I, Madman.

I've been looking for it everywhere. But I can't find it.

It's by this guy, his name is Malcolm Brand.

-That's charming. -No, don't knock it, it's really good.

It's horrific. It makes Stephen King read like Mother Goose... but it's passionate.

It's sort of like Poe.

-I never heard of him. -I hadn't either until yesterday.

He wrote two of them, this one, and one called I, Madman... which came in with the estate sale. Crap!

-Where are you going? -Upstairs, to have another look.

You sure are spending a lot of time trying to find something called I, Madman.

-You find it? -No, I didn't.

Maybe somebody bought it.

Yeah, maybe.

No, his mouth is stopp'd; Honest Iago hath ta'en order for't.

He is dead, my lord?

Had all his hairs been lives, my great revenge... had stomach for them all.

-Alas! He is betray'd, and I undone. -Out, strumpet!

-Weep'st thou for him to my face? -O, banish me, my lord, but kill me not!

-Sorry I'm late. -You didn't miss much.

-Yeah, I can see that. Did he call us? -No.

-Being done, there is no pause. -But whilst I say one prayer!

It is too late.

I know about 20 people who'd like to do that.

No, Collette's all right.

Any comments?

-No. -Bravo!

Collette, Michael, very good work.

Our own Ms. Berkowitz is going to star in a new made-for-television movie:

No More Yesterdays.


You should have gotten that part, you're absolutely perfect for it.

-Come on, Lenny. -No, really. Perfect.


-Collette's really talented and very beautiful. -So are you.

I hate her.

How about dinner? We'll talk about her behind her back.

No, I can't. I have plans with Richard.

Getting serious?


Okay, we'll take one more couple.

Kelly and Martin, please.

-All right! -We're off the hook!

Look at this.

We're not going to get to do our Cyrano. I bought a new nose and everything.

Hi, it's Rich. Something came up here. I pulled a narcotics stakeout.

I'm going to have to pass on dinner.

I'll try and stop by afterwards, but if it's late, I'll call.

I miss you and I love you, honey. Goodbye.

Oh, Mona!

Hello, Anna. It's been a long time.

Stay away from me.

But I fixed it, Anna.

What do you mean?

Look. A clean slate.

And a fresh palate.


What are you doing?

I was just... making a fire, and...

I heard a noise.

Yeah, I knocked. Honey, you've got to keep your front door locked.

Something on the stove?


I was making some tea.


You okay?

Yeah. Why?

I don't know.

You just seemed to be away there for a while.

I'm sorry.

How much do you love me?

On a scale of 1 to 10?


Enough to cut off your ear?


Yes. I don't know. What kind of an idiotic question is that?

It's just this book I'm reading.

This guy, he's a poet.

He's a doctor, really, but he sort of dropped out.

Anyway, he's madly in love with this actress named Anna Templer.

She won't have anything to do with him because she thinks he's really ugly.

She just can't get past it.

So, he cuts off his ear?

It's totally hopeless. He's desperate to please her.

Then one night, he's been drinking heavily.

You'd have to be more than just insane to have these thoughts.

He goes into his closet, digging around for his old medical bag.

He finds it, takes it out, over to a mirror.

He pumps his face full of Novocaine, and then, with his scalpel... begins to slice away his features, one by one.

And he's crazed with love!

So he slices off his face?

Great! The guy's never heard of a candygram or flowers?

It's only a book, Richard.

It gives me the creeps.

Okay, we won't talk about it anymore.

You always get weird when you read that shit.

If it'll make you feel any better... first thing after breakfast...

I'll cut myself shaving.

Come here.

That's really sweet of you.

I stood in the shadow of an alley, watching and waiting.

Watching and waiting for that special one.

It had to be a woman's. I knew that for sure.

Only she spends the time caring and cultivating... and combing the silken crown.

A downy frame around a painting as beautiful as the portrait itself.

They were all out.

The jet-blacks.

The mousy browns.

The bleached blondes.

But none was right... until Red came along.

Good old Red.

It was perfection.

Soft as cloud and brilliant as sun.

Her flaming crimson torch of feathers.

Ready and ripe for easy picking.

Oh, my God!

Can't somebody call the police?


Just a little something to help you sleep.


I would like you to count backwards slowly from 100.



















You like the color, Anna?

Miss? Are you getting on or what?

Jesus Christ, Mona!

I'm sorry. I thought he was in the back with me.

He scared the shit out of me. Where did he come from?

I found him. I figured we could keep him here. He's mouse patrol.

-Oh, God. -Boy, are you jumpy.

I thought you weren't coming to work till 4:00 today.

The book! First edition Hemingway.

Old lady Vettey came in yesterday after you left.

She had a shit-fit when she saw that stuff hadn't been unpacked yet.

-What stuff? -That stuff upstairs.

The estate sale shipment.

Oh, yeah.

I'll clean this up.

Okay, I'll unpack the stuff.

"Malcolm Brand"?

"Malcolm Brand."

Who'd want to buy a used sex manual?

-Mona, where did you find this book? -What are you talking about?

-Didn't you leave this outside my door? -Isn't this the book you're looking for?

I didn't find it.

-Yeah, Channing's desk. -Detective Channing, please.

-He's not in. -Hi, this is Virginia Clayton.

I called before. I'm a friend of Richard's.

-Is he back yet? -No.

But I gave him your message about a half-hour ago.

I know. But it's very important that he calls me back.

All I can do is give it to him again. I'm sure he'll call you back.

-Yes, thank you. -Okay.

Have him call me back as soon as possible.


...completely bald. A chrome dome. A cue ball.

But just look at these results!

With daily applications of our advanced formula, hair growth....

Do you like the music?

Why are you doing this to me?


Please... leave me alone.

You'll come around, Anna.

You will love me.

No, I don't love you. I'll never love you!

You can't mean that.

911. Is this an emergency?

Yes, there's a murder, it's about to happen. I think.

-The address, please? -On Wilshire and St. Paul.

The Piano Repair Restoration.

Can I have your name, please?

Stop it!

I closed the book.

Stop it!

Step back, please.

Navarro's upstairs. Forensic's stuff will take a half an hour.

Come on, this way.

Step back, please.

Here you go.

Watch your heads, boys.

-Frank. -Yeah?

-Any news about the witness? -Not a word.

Check this out.

-Hey, Channing. -Hi.

Hello, gentlemen.

Bag those up, please.

-We got anything? -Well, not much.

Male, probably 6'2" or 6'3".

-Didn't leave any fingerprints. -Look at this.

Son of a bitch sliced his ears off.

Excuse me.

I believe that shade was down.

It's me, Richard. Open the door!

Did you see it?

-Did you make the call? -Yes.

Can you identify him, honey?

Richard, I'm so scared.

It's okay. It'll be all right.


How about... that?

Yeah. That's the right shape.

-But they have to be closer together. -Closer together, all right.

No problem. How about that?

Yeah, that's it.


Let's work on the nose.

There's no nose.

No nose.

He usually wears a scarf over the bottom half of his face.

But he's showed me a couple of times.

He showed you?

That he doesn't have one. Not yet, anyway.

-He doesn't have one what? -A nose.

It's like his hair. He didn't have that until he killed Collette.

-And now he's got that guy's ears. -Collette Berkowitz, the actress?

She was in my acting class.

You're saying it's the same guy who killed the Berkowitz woman?

How do you know that?

Because he showed me this morning, on the bus.

Virginia, honey, we're not following you here.

Why don't we just take it from the top, okay?

-It all started with the book. -A book?

Richard knows about it.

It's this weird book that I picked up where I work.

-Somehow this character got out. -He got out?

He got out of the book.

One minute I was reading about him, and the next minute he was next to me.

He thinks that I'm this actress named Anna Templer.

She's in the book, too.

And he doesn't have a nose?

He doesn't have anything. He cut it all off.

His hair, his ears, his lips, and his nose. Everything.

And now he's going to go around... and take things from other people so he can graft them onto his own face.

Miss Clayton, why would he....

Why would anybody do such a thing?

Because he thinks that it will please me.

He thinks that it will please Anna.

But because he thinks I'm Anna, it's really the same thing, right?

I want to thank you very much for coming in.

Look, I mean, I know this must sound really crazy.

No, really. You've been a big help.

Detective, when you have a moment, my office, please?

Can you give me a minute here, please?

Yeah. Sure.

What is happening to you?

-Richard, I know it sounds crazy. -You're damn right it sounds crazy.

If you don't believe me, you should read the book.

-It's all right there. -I don't have to read the book. It isn't real!

Sorry to interrupt.

Garber's waiting, Richie.

I know you had a terrible night.

Why don't you wait downstairs for me and when I finish with the lieutenant... we'll go home and try and figure out what you think you saw.

Please, just wait for me downstairs?

Okay, Richard.

Going down?

Why don't you leave me alone!

Why are you doing this?

Stay away from me!

I want you, Anna.

-You're all I ever wanted. -Stay away!

This isn't happening. This is just in my mind.

Things will be better, Anna. Soon you'll love me as much as I love you.

No, I'm not Anna!

I'll have your heart one way or another.

Just go ahead and kill me, then. Get it over with.

Get it over with.

Are you all right?

Sure you're all right?


Look, Mel, I don't want to hear from strikes.

Look, Mel, I don't give a shit about your labor problems!

I've got orders to fill.

I need 1,000 copies of East Of Edith by Friday or I'm finished with this business!

Yeah, but look, have the wrappers been printed yet?

Look, check the warehouse.

We got a load of that western title that didn't sell.

Yeah, Long In The Saddle.

Yeah, just switch the covers.

Mel, nobody's going to know the difference.

Nobody gives a shit, believe me!

Look, I got someone in the office. I'll call you back.

-Are you Sidney Zeit? -No. I'm Nelson Doubleday.

What can I do for you?

Well, actually, sir, if you don't mind...

-I have something I'd like to show you. -I only publish smut.

I would love to chat with you, but I've got a lot of work to do.

Did you publish this book?

So my moniker's all over it.

-What is it to you? -I want to know about Malcolm Brand.

I wasn't married to the guy. I just published a couple of his books.


You doing a paper or something?


I don't know what to tell you. The books speak for themselves.

The guy was a lunatic.

Spent the last year of his life in a rubber room.

That's where he wrote the last one. One day he just took a powder.

Walked right out through the gate.

Nobody paid any attention. Found him nearly a week later.

Said it was exposure, but they couldn't be sure.

Why not?

Because by the time they got to him, his body was ripped apart... by some animals. Probably a pack of hungry dogs.

He was a weirdo, all right.

I remember once...

-right after his first book.... -Much of Madness, More of Sin.

Yeah, that's the one. Did pretty well.

And even had a bit of a following.

Anyway, I got him an assignment.

A short story. Esquire, kiddo.

And we're talking about the mainstream.

And they wanted him.

So Malcolm started working on her right away.

Two months later, he returns the advance money... and tells me he can't finish the story.

And get this: claims the characters were talking back to him.

Refusing to do what he says.

One even chased him out of town for a couple of weeks.

The monster from the first book. You know, the jackal boy.

Claims he had hated him.

Was hunting him down. Some return of evil for evil.

-You published this book as nonfiction. -Both books were nonfiction.

Malcolm insisted. Claimed they were confessions.

He was a ranting schizophrenic.

Of course, nobody believed anything he said.

So this stuff in the book, about what he did to himself....

Oh, yeah.

He messed himself up pretty bad, all right.


Okay. You got the coroner on three and your girlfriend's on one.

All right, just call me if you find anything else.

Dr. Price, could you hold on for just one minute? I appreciate it. Thank you.

Why didn't you wait for me downstairs?

Where are you?

Listen, you're never going to believe this.

-I know where he's going. -What are you talking about?

There's going to be another killing, tonight. Another guy.

A Mediterranean type. Olive skin with a strong Roman profile.

Brand's going to follow him home from a bar downtown on Grant.

I can't talk about this now.

The phones are ringing, I've got two murders to solve--

Richard, listen to me! I'm telling you, it's Brand.

He's back to finish what he started, what he wrote about in the book!

I'm telling you that I don't believe in ghosts!

Just hold on for a minute, all right?

Dr. Price, thanks for.... Oh, shit!


-Waiting for a bus, little girl? -Jesus Christ, Lenny.

Hey, I'm sorry.

-Are you waiting for someone? -No.

Well, yes, actually. I was waiting for an old friend.

That's something about Collette.

-It's a terrible thing. -It's horrible.

I was thinking of picking up a pizza and going home.

You're welcome to join me. I mean, if your friend doesn't show up.

Thank you, but I'll just wait here for a little while longer.

Thanks, anyway.

Okay. Sure.

-Some other time, then? -Okay.

-I'll see you in acting class. -Okay. See you later.

54-1. 54-1. Advise for code four.

-Evening, Lieutenant. -Evening.

-Okay, what do we got here? -Another mutilation, sir.

He got the nose this time.

-I understand we have a witness? -Yes, sir. She's right over there.

Oh, hell.

-Sir? -Nothing.

-Where's Channing? -He's on his way.

Come here.

-Virginia? Thanks, I've got it. It's okay. -Richard!

Richard, do you know who that is? That's Lenny, from my acting class.

-What are you talking about? -I knew this was gonna happen!

It's word for word out of the book. The bar, the alley.

I couldn't do anything! I couldn't make it stop.

It's okay. Just come over here and tell me what happened.

Damn it, where were you? Why didn't you listen to me?

-Why did you hang up the phone? -I didn't hang up on you, okay?

It was crazy when you called.

-I just hit a button and-- -And you just couldn't deal with it, right?

You couldn't deal with it. That there might be some truth in what I'm saying!

I'm sorry, okay?

Maybe I should have looked into this thing a little more than I did.

Garber had us running down other leads. He's my boss, what am I supposed to do?

You should just read the book, Richard, please!

And then we'll talk about it.

Okay, all right, I admit there are certain similarities.

I'll even go as far as to say... that maybe there's some copycat killer out there.

Somebody who's read the book and is getting off on the gore. I don't know.

That's fine, but it doesn't explain Malcolm Brand showing up in my apartment.

Let's stick close to earth for the time being, all right?

We have to figure out when this maniac is going to strike next.

It's right here. It's here in Chapter 8.

"I watched her before.

"Perched behind her desk, lonely lady librarian, love-starved swan.

"How I imagined her sweet, full lips burning passionately against her pillow...

"late at night when the stone-cold cats ceased standing guard over her lust."

He means the library.

I mean, it's all right here. Right down to the stone-cold cats.

He means the lions outside the steps of the main branch.

Do you see?

So what happened in the end?

To the girl, I mean, Anna.

You don't want to know.

Yes, I do.

He cuts out her heart with his scalpel, and he wears it around his neck.

Like a crucifix.

Close to his own heart.

-Hello? -Looks like we're in luck.

Garber's letting us go for it, and throwing in some uniforms.

That's great news, Richard.

It took some doing, but he's desperate.

And if we're wrong....

We're not wrong. I'm positive about this. He'll be there tonight.

All right, the library closes at 8:00. Can you be there in half an hour?

In half an hour?

Okay, I'll be there.

Mona, I'm gonna leave work a little early tonight. All right?



-Mona, is there something wrong? -No, nothing.

Nothing's wrong. You've walked around here like a zombie all day.

You haven't said two words to me since you got here.

I'll be stuck here doing your work while you run all around fighting crime.

It's the estate sale stuff. I forgot to unpack it.

The least you can do is let me in on what's going on.

I will. I'll call you later.

I'll unpack that stuff tomorrow morning.


No, forget about it.

I'll finish it off tonight.

All right.

Okay, I'm gonna go.

I'll call you later.

Okay. Thanks, Mona.

Yeah. Go.

Okay, Joey, the place is secure. Everyone should be out in four minutes.

Marian... if you see or hear anything, anything at all, you let us know.

-We'll be listening on that radio. -Okay.

The rent-a-cops have all been briefed. Business as usual.

Good, you understand that?

It's possible he's been watching you for a few days.

Don't do anything unusual.

What you normally do when you lock up, do the same tonight.

All right, kids, showtime.

There, almost set.

-You're sure you're okay? -Yeah.

Here we go.

-Is everybody ready? -I think I....

-You're sure you want to do this? -No.

Not particularly, but I'm the only one who fits the suit.

All right?

Oh, my God, it's really dark down here.


Hope you guys can hear me.

Okay, I'm in the microfiche room.

Wait. I think I hear something.

Where is she?

It's footsteps.

There's somebody out in the hall.

-They're coming closer! -That's it, go!


He's in the room.

Richard, he's in the room.

Freeze, police officer!


I'll have a uniform take you back to my place.

And I'll be there as soon as I can.

What, that's it? You're just gonna give up?

He didn't show up. What can we do?

Listen, Richard, it's gonna happen tonight. I mean, maybe not here, but somewhere.

If it hasn't happened already.

I mean, you know, there's more than one library in this city.

Not with cats on the front steps.

Come on, Virginia, we gave it a shot. It didn't pan out.

We can't stake out every building in the city with books inside... based on some cryptic passage from a 30-year-old novel.

Now go back to my apartment, all right?

We'll talk about it later.

Right, later.

Vámonos, Richie.

You got some shit to shovel.

Channing, I want to talk to you. Now.


"Love-starved swan.

"Passionate lips.


"and cats."

Get off the phone, Mona.

Detective Channing's desk, Detective Fishman speaking.

Hi, Virginia.

No, he's in with the lieutenant right now.


Okay, I'll get it to him. 'Bye.

Fishman. Where you going?

-Important message for Richard. -Let me see that.

Yes, Richie's nutty girlfriend.

You won't be doing him any favors by bringing this to him now.

Mona, are you back there?

Mona, I'm sorry.

I knew you'd come, Anna.

It's our wedding day.


Somebody let me out of here!

Leave me alone!

Leave me alone!

Stay away from me.

Finally your heart will be mine.


Virginia, move away. Back away.

You all right, baby?

-Sweetheart? -See?

Son of a bitch!

Head more canine than human. A scrawny, growling, evil thing.

Conceived much of madness, more of sin.

It lived, it lived!