Insomnia (2002) Script



There's just nothing down there.

I haven't seen a building in, like, 20 minutes.

-Look at that. -We're not on vacation, Hap.

Cheer up, will you?

Tell that to her, partner.

Better hang on, guys. It's gonna get rough.


-Ooh. -There goes my lunch.

Detective Eckhart, I'm Detective Ellie Burr.

-Hi. ELLIE: Nice to meet you.

HAP: How are you doing? ELLIE: Good.

"Halibut fishing capital of the world." Okay.

Detective Dormer, it's an honor to meet you.

Welcome to Nightmute. I got the car right here.

It's so incredible to be working with you.

I've followed all of your cases: Theodore Dineli, Frank Prud'homme...

...the Ocean Park shootings and especially the Leland Street murders.

Is that where Ronald Langley cut you, at 325 Leland Street?

You did your homework.

The Leland Street murders was my case study at the academy.

-I'll take you to the Lodge and-- -No, take us to the station.

Right. We need to get started.

Most homicides are solved in the first 72 hours.

Well, it's 48 hours. We're a day behind.

But who's counting?

Yeah, come in.

They got you behind a desk, huh? Charlie Bubbles. How you doing?

-I haven't seen you since when? -Hey, Charlie.

-Seven years? -Eight.

Seven years! I am old. Ellie, get everyone in the bullpen.

-Nice kid. -Loves the job. Heh.

When I called Buck for advice on this, I never expected he'd send you up here.

-Something about Internal Affairs? -They're moving in.

It's nothing. It's the usual crap. Buck figured you could use some help--

HAP: They got Finn and Kentor on Narcotics.

The fuckers are looking for headlines--

-It's gonna blow over. -Got a message from Warfield.

I.A.'s pit bull.

He wants to be posted on your movements.

You'll find us more straightforward.

Good guys, bad guys, but a lot less public relations. It's simple.

Except for this.

Ahem. Okay, listen up. Detectives Dormer and Eckhart...

...on loan from Buck Lundgard, L.A. Homicide.

-They'll help with the Connell case. -Help?

CHARLIE: Anything they want to see, show them.

Anyplace they want to go, take them.

This is Fred Duggar.

-He's heading the investigation. WILL: Hello, Fred.

FRED: A pleasure. -Want to get on it?

-Seen what we got? -Let's start with the body.

-You got the report? -I want to see the body for myself.


Herniation of the brain stem due to intracerebral hemorrhage.

-Beaten to death. -These contusions?

CORONER: Superficial. Most of the trauma was to her face and neck.

HAP: Any signs of rape? CORONER: No.

-This one covers an older bruise. -There's an older one here.

-They're both in the report. -He washed her hair.

Scrubbed her nails.

FRED: It's all in the report.

-Doesn't say he clipped them. -She could have clipped them.

Nope. No polish on the ends of the nails. See?

She painted them herself. Someone else cut them. Toes too.

HAP: Naked when found? FRED: Yeah. Last seen wearing a red dress.

HAP: No fibers, flakes, hairs?

We know about forensics work here. The body gave us nothing.

She gave us plenty. All this trouble, all this care. Why?

ELLIE: He knew her. -He knows we can connect him to her.

This isn't a random psycho? Crime of passion?

Maybe. But whatever happened, his reaction wasn't passionate.

He didn't panic. Didn't chop her up or burn her.

He just thought about what we would be looking for...

...and then calmly removed all those traces.

No haste. No rush.

Why clip the nails after scrubbing them?

Manipulating the body. Prolonging the moment.

HAP: No mutilation.

Not this time.

-You think there's been others? -No.

But there's gonna be. This guy...

...he crossed the line and he didn't even blink.

You don't come back from that.

Okay. Let's go find out who Kay was.

Fred said not to touch anything, so I haven't tidied up.

She hates it when I go into her room anyway.

Thank you, Mrs. Connell.


So she went to a party Friday night.

Not exactly a party. It's a local dive where the kids hang out.

No diary?

We didn't find one. Her mom said she has a journal.

FRED: Friends said she argued with her boyfriend Friday.

She stormed off just after midnight.

She did, huh?

This is interesting.

Who is this?

Tanya Francke, Kay's best friend.

I want to talk to her.

Who is Kay Connell? Who is she? Is she popular or is she a loner?

Did she like this town? She want to bolt first chance she got?

Did she have dreams?

She knew this guy. We know her, maybe we can know him.

This is designer. This is expensive.

-The boyfriend, Randy. -Randy Stetz.

-He could afford this? -He's in school.

-Mom didn't buy it. -What are we thinking?

I don't know, stepfather? Any rich uncles?


An admirer.


-Tsk. I want the boyfriend. -I'll get him to the station.

I want to go to the school. Pull him out in front of friends.

Catch him off guard. It will get people talking.

So how far away is the school?


-It's 10:00, Detective Dormer. -You bet.

At night.

Oh. So when does it get dark here?

It doesn't. Heh.

Not this time of year.

Yeah, I heard about that. How come you didn't know that, Hap?

-Lower 48. -Lower 48?

Not from here. Can tell by your walk.

-How's that? -Unsure.

-Ah. -Dormer and Eckhart.

We have a reservation.

Don't be fooled by my friend's frivolous demeanor. He's all business.

-Your restaurant still serving? -Kitchen's about to close.

We'll be quick. Thank you.


We got the Halibut Calabrese, got the Halibut Olympian.

-Keep going. -Halibut Cajun style.

I can't wait to see what they got for dessert.

Natives are getting restless.

-We gotta talk. -No, we don't.

-Just sit tight? -Nothing's changed.

Nothing's changed?

What do you think we're doing in the halibut capital of the world?

Buck figured Charlie needed help.

Buck figured I.A. would be coming to me next, and he was right.

Warfield had me in his office for three hours yesterday.

Hap, he's rattling your cage, pal. That's all.

Me and Trish talked it through, and I'm sorry, I gotta cut a deal.

-Don't say this shit to me. -You won't be involved.

I'm not? Of course I will.

With your reputation, he can't touch you.

My reputation's the whole problem.

You think Warfield gives a fuck about you shaking down drug dealers?

You think that will get him his headlines? He needs the big fish.

He's putting the squeeze on you to get to me.

-But you're clean, Will. -I'm a good cop, yeah.

But there's always something they could use to get at your credibility.

Have you any idea what this is gonna do?

Think about all my cases. All the cases dependent on my word, my judgment.

Those fuckers on the street. That's what you're doing.

They got nothing on you because there's nothing to get.


-What about Dobbs? -That's different.

It's different?

Warfield doesn't want Dobbs on the street.

It's a house of cards. Once it starts, it's just gonna tumble. All of it.

That's a chance I gotta take, pal.

-I got family. -Don't give me that.

Warfield made it clear. I get probation.

We're cops, man. This is not about us.

This is about all the people who depend on us. People with families.

I spent my life doing this. My life.

You're gonna destroy it like that. Why? Why?

So some I.A. prick gets closer to being chief of police?

Or playing golf with the mayor or whatever the fuck else he's after?

You finished?

Sorry, I gotta cut a deal.

So, make any decisions?

Uh.... You do everything around here?

-After 11, pretty much. -Ah. Ha.

Over to you, Will. What are you having?

I lost my appetite.

Excuse me.





-What kind of calls you get here? -Mostly drinking-related problems.

Domestic abuse, bar fights, that sort of stuff.

People here come to live the way they want to... most people keep to themselves.

Chief won't let me handle anything over a misdemeanor.

Don't knock misdemeanors.

No, but it's such small stuff. It's so boring.

It's all about small stuff. You know, small lies, small mistakes.

People give themselves away same in misdemeanors as in murder cases.

It's just human nature. Aren't you gonna write that down?



WILL: Friends making you nervous? They think you did it?

You killed her?

-No smoking on the school premises. -Did you love her?

-Randy, did you love her? -Sure, she was nice.

She was nice. Wow. That makes me all soft inside.

Did it occur to you she didn't love you?

She loved me.

-Wanted me every night. -Oh. Probably to pass the time.

Girl like Kay Connell, she was looking for more than some loser. Right?

What can I say? Love is blind.

-Live on your own? -His grandpa's.

-No alibi for Friday? -Didn't know I'd need one.

-At the party what'd you fight about? -Stuff. No big deal.

-I heard it was a loud fight. -I guess.

-I heard it was pretty rough. -It wasn't rough.

Not like the other times. Those times she wouldn't listen to you.

Couldn't keep her mouth shut.

-Keep fishing, man. HAP: We saw the bruises.

They said she was beaten.

Not those bruises. Come on. The old bruises. Your bruises.

I'm sick of this. I haven't done anything wrong.

You haven't?

Fuck you!

You're a prick in a leather jacket. What the fuck do you know?


...this whole thing you're doing, this fuck-the-world act.

It might work with your mom. It might even work with local cops...

...who know you enough to figure you're too dumb to kill...

...without leaving witnesses and a signed confession.

It ain't gonna work with me.

Because I know things. You understand?

I know you beat your girlfriend.

I know she was seeing somebody else.

Someone she might have gone to see after she walked out on you Friday.

Now are you gonna tell us who that somebody might be?

Or are you so fucking stupid...'re gonna leave yourself as the last person to see Kay Connell alive?

I don't know.

You don't know.

I couldn't get her to tell me.

How hard did you try?

Pretty hard.

-You think he.... -No.

How'd it go? Find where this is from.

Mrs. Connell and her friends don't know.

You try the jewelry stores? Small things, remember?

The second you're about to dismiss something, think about it.

Look at it again.

Want me to write that down?

No, I'll remember it.


Ellie Burr.


-Where was it? FRED: In a cabin on the beach.

-It's definitely Kay's? CHARLIE: Her books are in it.

FRED: Kids found it. -Cabin secured?

FRED: Francis is headed there. WILL: Stop him.

-Tell him to stay clear. CHARLIE: Rich.

Biology and Algebra.

Let's find out who she studied with, where she bought this.

"Otherwise Engaged. A J. Brody mystery."

-Who reads this crap? -I do.

Read it. After it's dusted.

Find anything that strikes you, plot-wise, underlined passages.

There it is. The diary.

Every word.

That's it.

-I'll put it in evidence. -No.


Call every radio station from here to Anchorage.

Tell them we're looking for the bag Kay left the party with.

-Get it on the air in the next hour. -You got it.

Fill that bag up with books and put it back.

Gonna eat this son of a bitch alive, knowing he missed this.


You know something, Charlie? Maybe this isn't such a hot idea.

A guy picks up a bag, don't make him guilty.

Will, it's solid.

I don't know. This kind of thing. Maybe we do this by the numbers.

-Come on. -I.A.'s gonna be on my ass.

I don't want this turning up in some court when my rep's in the shit...

-...and they're pulling apart my cases. -Bullshit.

What the fuck you care?!

Someone beat a girl to death. Your job is to find him.

You're a cop, not a lawyer. Don't let I.A. cut your balls off.

Charlie's right, Will.


OP 1, this is OP 2. We still got nothing.

FARRELL: Yeah, it's nice. Light.

All plastic except for the barrel. Never rusts.

What do you carry down in L.A.?

-Smith & Wesson .45. -Excellent.


-Maybe he doesn't listen to the radio. -He prefers the voices in his head.

Hey, Will?

We have somebody moving towards the cabin.

Okay, fan out. Nice and easy.


WILL: Come on, go!


Police! Come out!


Down there, huh?

Down to the water. Spread out!


Fuck it.


FARRELL: Dormer!

Hold it! Who's there?


WILL: You okay? -I'm okay.



-Will? -Don't talk.

-Will. -Don't talk. Don't talk.

-Here. -You sh--


You shot....

I know. I couldn't see, Hap. I couldn't see in the fog.

You tried to....

You tried to kill me? Fuck you.

No, listen, Hap.

-Listen to me now. No, no. -Get away, get away!

No, I couldn't see you in the fog. I couldn't. I--

I couldn't see you, Hap.

Don't go. Come on.

-Man down! FRED [IN DISTANCE]: Who's down?

-Man down here! FRED: Spread out!

Dormer! Where'd he go? Which way?

Dormer! Which way?

That way.


CHARLIE: Farrell went down.

You gave chase.

After you left Farrell, you heard the killer's second shot.

You ran down to the water. You found Hap.


Is that what happened?

-Did Hap say anything? -Damn it!

Why didn't I know about the goddamn tunnel?

You don't move on a suspect without knowing his exits.

There's a bunch of those tunnels out there.

Closed years ago when they were mines.

-I don't even know most of them myself. -I had him, Charlie.

As close as you are now.

I could smell the son of a bitch.

-And I blew it. -There's no point in blaming yourself.

-I fucked up everything. -Don't come apart on me, understand?

I need you to find this bastard.



ELLIE: You wanted to see me? -You're on Eckhart's shooting.

But we know what happened, and I'm on the Connell case.

Anchorage wants to send someone. I told them we can do it. Can't we?

-Sure. -Write it up. No Shakespeare.

Just enough to fry this son of a bitch longer. Right?



Uh.... Jenny, it's Will. Can you put your mother on?

TRISH: Hello?

Trish, it's Will.

What's happened? They won't tell me anything.

It's Hap....

Is he okay?

No, he's gone, Trish.

He's dead.



Trish, I can't tell you how sorry I am.

What was he doing, Will?

This guy killed a girl, and, so we....

We had him....

We found him and we had him cornered. And then he ran and....


I'm so sorry.

-I'm just so sorry. -Did he suffer?

-No, I don't-- -Did he say anything?

Well, when I found him he....

He was peaceful.

-Did you get him? -No, no. Not yet.

You find him.

And when you do, don't arrest him.

You understand me, Will Dormer?

Don't you dare fucking arrest him!

-Okay, Trish. -You understand?


Trish, listen. I'm--



WOMAN [OVER RADIO]: --was shot and killed this evening... an attempt to apprehend a suspect in the murder...

...of 17-year-old local girl, Kay Connell.

I'm sorry. It's been on the radio for hours.

We're not used to this kind of stuff up here.

He was standing right there. Last night.

I hope I was nice to him.

He liked you.





Detective? I'm sorry to bother you, but could you just point... where you were when you heard the second shot?

Sorry to make you do this right now.

That's all right. You're doing your job.

Where was I?

-There. ELLIE: Thank you.

No sign of Farrell's bullet yet, huh?

No, we'll have the other one for ballistics after...

...the autopsy.

I'm really sorry.

How are you doing?

-Clean through, huh? -Yeah.

No souvenir. Bullet got lost in the rocks, I guess.

Well, better luck next time.

You ever been shot?

Yeah, I have. Kind of itches, don't it?

We gotta catch him. Did you get a look at him?

-When? -When I left you.

-You see anything? -I was in a lot of pain...

...and when I heard that second shot, I kept my goddamn head down.

Hey, I'm...

...sorry about Detective Eckhart.

Sorry about that megaphone.

-Maybe if I hadn't-- -Farrell, listen.

What were we doing running around in the fog?

We doing it for our health? We were chasing someone.

So anything that happened on that beach is not your fault.

That's the fault of one man and one man only.

And that's the man who beat Kay Connell to death.

ELLIE: At this point, Dormer encountered Brooks.

The suspect, obscured by fog, shot Officer Brooks... the vastus externus of the left thigh.

Francis, you're Farrell. You were shot in the leg.

FRANCIS: Come on, Ellie.

ELLIE: When you get this, get the cone.


-This his blood? -Ketchup maybe.

Was he eating a hot dog?


WILL: Anything he dropped or stepped on... put in a bag.

Cigarette butts, gum wrappers, coins, anything.

Suspect will often leave something behind.

ELLIE: Detective Dormer gave chase...

...lost the suspect in the fog then heard a shot...

...coming from a northeasterly direction.

-He wasn't that way. RICH: How do you know?

Because I saw him.

-Turn this way. MAN: Are we almost done here?

My nads are freezing off.

Ellie! I think I found something.

FRED: Should they start further over? -No. Waste of time He stayed by the water far as he could.

I saw him over the rocks. He knew he'd lose us down there.


FRED: Duggar.

Where'd he find it?


Yeah, well, just let me know.


I will.


They found Farrell's bullet. Looks like a .38.

We'll get both bullets to the lab.

See if we can get a fix on the weapon. If it's okay with you.

A guy came by. Said he was your new partner.

-Did he leave a name? -No.

Can I borrow this? Thank you.


-Pioneer Lodge. WARFIELD: Warfield for Dormer.

John Warfield. He's called a couple times.

Want me to lie?

No, I'll take it.

Thank you.

Dormer here.

I was shocked to hear about your partner. I was getting to know him--

What do you want?

You know what I want, Eckhart was gonna give it to me.

You got something to say, just say it.

-He told you about our conversation? -Say it.

Let's just say I'm interested to see your report on what happened.

Don't presume to know what happened.

You weren't here. But then, you never are, are you?

You're always safe behind some desk, reading your bullshit reports.

And that is why I have nothing but contempt for you.

You and all the assholes like you...

...risk nothing, spend all day sucking the marrow out of real cops...

...when you never had the balls to be one yourself.


CORONER: Detective, you came yourself. -Yeah.

Sign here.

He didn't suffer too much.

-What's the caliber? -Don't know.

The gunshot victims I see are from rifles. Wasn't one of those.

-Had any sleep, detective? -Yeah.


-What the hell is wrong with you? -Sorry.

No problem.

-Bullet. I want results by tomorrow. FRED: Aye, aye, cap'n.

We should check Randy's whereabouts.

Think it was Randy out there?

He still doesn't have an alibi. You said he beat Kay.

-You check it out, then. -I will.







ELLIE: Detective Dormer?

My report. I finished.

I need you to look it over and sign it.

It's self-explanatory. I look forward to getting back to work with you.

We have more important things to do than paperwork.

-A man died, Ellie. This is important. -Oh.

Of course. I didn't mean to imply that that wasn't--

Be sure of your facts before you file this.

It's your name on the report.

He couldn't have come from there.


Dormer here.

-Hello? MAN: Can't sleep, Will?

Me neither.

Who's this?

I got a nap this afternoon, but I guess you had to work.

Who am I speaking to?

Get rid of your clock yet? Won't help.

When I moved here, I went five nights. You believe that?

-This crazy light. WILL: A name or I'm gonna hang up.

No, you're not. You need the company. Nothing as lonely as not sleeping.

Feels like the whole fucking planet is deserted. Just you and me.


...tell me who I'm talking to, and we can chat a while.

-I can't do that. -Why not?

-Not till you understand some things. -Like what?

I saw.

-Saw what? -Saw you shoot your partner.

Saw him die in your arms on that beach.

I thought you'd blame me. That's why I dropped my gun.

-My uncle's old .38. -Yeah.

-You get it? What about ballistics? -Listen to me now.

I don't know what you think you saw.

We should discuss this, don't you think? Face to face.

This situation isn't yours to control. I saw you.

I'll control this situation, pal.

Because you don't hide from me in a town this small. Get it?

No, not for long.

I need your help. I'm not telling anyone anything.

We're partners on this.



--but to be remembered as the Kay we knew and loved.

Swimming, hiking through the Kebaughs...

...meeting at Darrow's after school...

...and always, always with a smile on her face.

Detective Dormer?

I want to check something. I was going over my report last night...

...and I have a question about where that second shot came from.

You said you heard it from the waterline...

...but from the way Detective Eckhart's body fell... couldn't have come from the rocks further up from the water.

Do you think it's possible you heard the shot before you hit the waterline?

-Detective Dormer? -Yeah, it's possible.


Why don't I give her a ride?

RANDY: Thought I smelled something. -How you doing? Coping?

-You're that cop. -Yeah.

-Are you coming or not? -Not.



You want a stick of gum? I love chewing gum.

It keeps me awake.

-I never met anyone from L.A. before. -Not missing much.

-So how do you like our shithole town? -It's not bad.

-Were you good friends with Kay? -Best friends. Since grade school.

-That's a long time. -Yeah, we were like sisters.

Like sisters? Must be tough for you what happened, then.

Everyone keeps telling me I'm doing great, considering.

But they're all real worried about me.

They don't even care if I show up for school or not.

Worried I haven't cried yet.

But ain't no law says you gotta cry, right?

No, there ain't.

What about her other friends?

Do we have to talk about Kay right now? God.

I don't want to think about all that. Just drive.

I understand.

-Want me to take you somewhere? -As long as it's fun.

Young, impressionable girl...

...left alone with older Los Angeles cop. Who knows where we might go?

Well, I know a place.

Hmm. Let's just drift a while.

Look at this. Who does he think he is?


What does he think he's doing?

-Move over. -Let him move over.

Come on! Move over!

What are you doing? Move over, you crazy fuck!

-Oh, my-- -I moved over.

WILL: Just a little visit to the dump!

-You should feel at home. -You just about killed us! Get off me!

-What is this? -You and Kay were like sisters?

-Yes. I told you. -Why are her pictures of you torn?

Why was her boyfriend's hands all over your ass at her funeral?

Randy doesn't have an alibi because he was with you.

You were out fucking your best friend's boyfriend.

-That what best friends do? -She never really loved Randy, okay?

-She didn't love him? -No.

How do you figure that? She have someone else?

-I don't know. -Someone bought her dresses, jewelry?

Hey, look around.

I want to show you something. You'll understand why I brought you.

This is the spot where your best friend's naked body was dumped.

Wrapped up in garbage bags!


...I know you don't want anyone knowing you betrayed your best friend.

That's why you won't give Randy an alibi for Friday night. I know.

Tell me who Kay was seeing. And we can forget the whole thing.

It'd be our secret. Our little secret, but I need a name.

She wouldn't tell me, okay?

She wouldn't tell you? You're her best friend.

-It was her big fucking secret! -Why a secret?

I don't-- Because she thought she was special...

...and she kept saying he'd help her get out of here.

-Who is "he"? -I don't know.

-She talked about him? -Yeah.

-She talked to you? -Yeah.

And what did she call him?

-She called him something, right? -Yes!

What? What'd she call him?


She called him Brody. That's not his name, so what's the difference?

Jesus! You happy now, you fucking asshole?

Okay. You did good. Come on. I'll let you drive.

You wanna drive?

It's just poetry. I read it line by line.

It's nothing specific. Verses on nature, love. That sort of stuff.


Detective Dormer. Line one.

-Dormer here. MAN: How're you holding up?

Can't be easy to keep working after three days of no sleep.

And hard to keep focus.

Are you seeing things yet?

You know, those little flashes? Tricks of light?

See your partner?

-I see Kay sometimes. -What can I do for you, sir?

Why couldn't you tell anyone you shot him?

I mean, it was an accident, right?

I hope so. For your sake. You know what I'm saying?

No need for threats.

I'm trying to make you understand my situation.

You thought no one would believe you because of the trouble in L.A.

-I know what that's like, Will. WILL: Uh-huh.

-I got the same problem. -You do?

Mm-hm. I'm not who you think I am.

WILL: You're not? -No.

-I'm not a murderer any more than you. -Why don't we get together?

Talk, have a beer, whatever?

-Throw a little gas on the fire? -Yeah--


I gotta go check some things. Why don't you...

...put this stuff back into evidence and tell....

-What's that guy? ELLIE: Fred.

Tell him I'll see him in the morning.

Can we return this? Her mother might like it.







WILL: That's right.










WALTER [ON RECORDING]: This is Walter. Leave a message, wait for the beep.

WALTER: Will, you there? Where else can you go in that state?

You must've been freezing.

If you want, take a shower. There are clean towels in the bathroom.



This is Walter. Leave a message, wait for the beep.

Will, pick up. I'm not dumb enough to come back--

-Walter Finch. -Will.

Will Dormer, what are you doing?

I try to help and you're running around like a maniac.

Were you gonna kill me? How would you explain that?

No one gets too upset when child murderers are brought in feet first.

There's no evidence I killed Kay. You know because I told you.

-Come on. What's wrong with you? -Guess I'm a little cranky.

-Lack of sleep. -Get some rest, will you?

Got some pills, and my bed's nice and comfy.

Another night up and you'll lose it. Hallucinating, babbling.

Tomorrow when you feel better, we'll meet in public. We'll sort it out.

There's a ferry north of Nightmute. I'll be on the 11:00.

And before you leave, could you feed the dogs? They're on a diet.


FRED: Dormer? Fax from the lab.

Weapon was a .38 Smith & Wesson.

-We found something that might-- -I found this. At the Connells'.


It's the author of the book we found in Kay's bag.

FRED: It's signed by the author. He's a local.

Kay had all his books. We should check it out.

-Small stuff, right? -Yeah. Sure, sure.

Nice work, Ellie. She's got sharp eyes, huh?

You bet your ass she does.

Good stuff.


WILL: What a view.

-I'm not who you think I am. -No?

Walter Finch:

Lousy writer. Lonely freak.

Murderer. No?

When I was 7, my grandmother took me to Portland.

We were walking along and two guys snatched her purse.

A police officer came to ask questions.

He stood the whole time. Uniform looked brand-new.

Shoes, badge were polished. It was like a soldier, only better.

I respect your profession. I write about it.

I wanted to become a cop after school. I couldn't pass all the tests.

You should've tried Internal Affairs. They'd have taken you.

What do you want from me?

After Kay died, I knew everyone would think I meant to do it.

So I cleaned the body, removed all evidence connecting it to me.

Except for your fucking novel. Heh.

Under pressure. You don't always see the wood for the trees.

You, for one, should have figured that out by now.

When I heard they had brought somebody from L.A., I panicked.

I knew the locals would connect me to Kay eventually.

I could handle them. They never look in the eyes of a killer.

Killing changes you. You know that.

It's not guilt.

I never meant to do it.

It's like awareness.

Life is so important. How could it be so fucking fragile?

You'd see it right away, wouldn't you?

You trying to impress me? Because you got the wrong guy.

Killing that girl made you feel special.

But you're not.

You're the same pathetic freak I've been dealing with for 30 years.

Know how many of you I caught with your pants down?

I never touched her like that.

You wanted to. Now you wish you had. Hmm?

Best you could do is clip her nails.

Now you're so different. You don't get it, do you?

You're my job. You're what I'm paid to do.

You're about as mysterious to me as a toilet is to a plumber.

Reasons for doing what you did? Who gives a fuck?

Motivations are everything, Will.

What did you see through the fog?

I saw pretty clearly, didn't I? I saw you take aim...

-Forget it. -...shoot your partner in the chest.

Oh, well.

I heard him say, "Get away from me!" Why?

Anything to do with Internal Affairs investigation?

All that tension in your department?

-You think I'm that easy? -I'm saying that's how it looks.

Maybe even how it feels.

How did it feel when you found out it was Hap? Guilt? Relief?

Suddenly, you're free and clear. Did you think about it before that moment?

What would it be like if he wasn't there anymore?

Doesn't mean you did it on purpose.

You figure if you got something on me, then I'll just roll over?

-Protect my reputation? -No.

Protect your life's work.

The scumbags you put away will be back on the street before you go on trial.

With Hap gone, you're free and clear. Why mess with that?

Kay Connell. Remember her?

It's your choice.

Think of all the other Kay Connells.

Do the math. You're a pragmatist. You have to be because of your job.

This isn't easy, but I want you to understand...

...we're in the same situation here.

You didn't mean to kill Hap any more than I meant to kill Kay.

But that's hard for them to believe, so that's why we need each other.

We gotta find a patsy for the Connell case and make it stick.

Do that. Then you go back to Los Angeles and I can go back to living my life.

So, what do you need from me?

What do they know about me?

Uh.... They found a signed copy of one of your books at Kay's house.

-So you'll be brought in for questioning. -At the station?

-That's what they usually do. -Ah.

Brought in for questioning. I can write that easily.

Calm down. It's no big thing. It's preliminary inquiry, so...

-...just tell the truth. -Mm.

-Tell them about Randy-- -Why are you talking about Randy?

Talk about your relationship with Kay. You can't hide it, so just say it.

Randy is none of your business. It's not your affair.

Shouldn't I tell them she was unhappy--

Tell them she was unhappy, but let them find Randy themselves.

That way, they'll make it stick.


We need a wild card.

-A wild card? -Yeah. Something that's there.

Something we can use. It's in every good detective novel.

You still have the .38?


Really? That's a shame.

We could use that. That'd be very convincing for them.


This is my stop.


Wild card!


FRANCIS: Night, everyone. -Night, Francis.

Working some overtime?

-Nice. -Cracking some big cases?

FRANCIS: Night. -Night, guys.



WALTER: This is always the worst time of night for me.

Too late for yesterday, too early for tomorrow.

Sorry about the tape. I had to make sure you'd follow through.

I'll follow through.

I've been thinking it over. I should tell them about Randy.

-I think that's a bad idea. -But he's the patsy. He deserves it.

You should have heard the shit Kay told me. How he abused her.

But these are cops. They're not children.

You don't throw things like that in their lap.

I'll push them toward Randy.

When the time is right.

We don't have the gun. How will we convince them he's guilty?

Did you keep the dress?

The dress?

Kay's dress, nail clippings. What did you do with those?

That's great. The dress. We could use that. Even better than the gun.

-Where could he have taken her? -Where'd you take her?

-She died in the cabin, right? -Yeah.

Where'd you take her to clean her up?

Don't think about that. This is tough enough for you.

-It was an accident. -Yeah.

-I didn't mean to kill her, you know. -I know, but what happened?

She called and said that she and Randy had had a fight.

She wanted to come over and talk, and I said, "Meet me at our place."

That's the cabin at the beach.

She comes over. She's distraught and a little drunk.

She starts telling me about how Randy and Tanya were carrying on.

I only wanted to comfort her. Hold her.

I kissed her, and got a little excited...

...and she started laughing at me.

She wouldn't stop laughing.

Ever had someone laugh at you when you're like that? Vulnerable.

Laughing their ass off? Someone you thought respected you?

You ever have that happen?

I just wanted to stop her laughing. And then, you know...

...I hit her.

Couple of times, to stop her. Get a little respect.

Randy did it all the time. She liked it when he did it.

She never blamed him. Never wanted to leave him.

I do it, she starts screaming. She wouldn't stop.


She's screaming. I put my hand over her mouth.

Then I'm really scared. I'm scared shitless.

More scared than I've ever been. I'm more scared than her.

And then...

...everything was clear.

There was no turning back.

And after that, I was calm.

Real calm.

You and I share a secret.

We know how easy it is to kill somebody.

That ultimate taboo. It doesn't exist outside our minds.

I didn't murder her.

I killed her, but it just ended up that way.

So where'd you take the body?

Thanks for listening to me.

Feels good to talk about that stuff. I'll be able to sleep now.

You wanna talk about Hap?


-Morning. -Your phone isn't working.

I turned it off. I needed to sleep. Sorry.

Fred called that author. He was happy to cooperate.

He'll be in first thing, so we need to get to the office.

I forgot to tell you they sell these in stores in Anchorage.

-No way of finding out who bought it. -Okay.

Bet you're looking forward to getting back to L.A.

Back to robbery homicide, or...

...maybe not.

-What are you saying to me, Ellie? -Nothing.

Are you doing okay? You haven't been sleeping much.

No, I haven't. No.

A good cop can't sleep because a piece of the puzzle's missing.

A bad cop, because his conscience won't let him.

-You said that once. -I did?

Sounds like something I'd say, don't it?

I'll see you back there.

FRED: You were acquainted with the deceased, Kay Connell?

Yes, I was.

In what regard were you and her familiar?

-Thank you. -You're welcome.

-How did you know her? -She was an avid reader of my novels.

FRED: When did you meet her first?

A year ago. She came to a signing in Nightmute.

She hung around afterwards. We chatted about my writing...

...and how she wanted to write...

...then she asked if she could visit me and talk about books, things like that.

-And she did? -Yeah, we became very close.

She got comfortable enough to show me her writing.

-What does she write? -Poetry, actually.

-Any good? -No, not really.

-You tell her that? -Why would I?

Exactly what was the nature of your relationship to this girl, Finch?

I was someone she could talk to. Someone outside of her everyday life.

That's why she needed me and approached me.

Why'd she need you for that?

-Well, her boyfriend, Randy-- -Randy Stetz?

-Abusive little prick. He hit her. -We know all this already.

-It was getting worse. -So?

A lot worse. Really.

Why all this eagerness to talk about Randy?

You're right. I'm sorry. That's probably all hearsay.

I don't want anything I say taken the wrong way.

Anything you say to us at this stage is in confidence.

Secondly, we're not a bunch of hotheads who'll draw crazy conclusions.

-Okay. FRED: Please, continue.

One more thing. Probably doesn't mean much, but I think Kay was scared.

-I have myself to blame for that. -Why is that?

Randy knew who I was. He knew that she had a friend...

...someone she confided in. It made him furious.

She wrote about being scared. Her letters were getting desperate.

You still have these letters, by any chance?

I probably do. Do you think it might help?

They might.

Okay. Anything else?

The thing that worried her the most was the gun.

He had this old handgun. He showed it to her.

I don't know where he got it, probably wasn't even his...

...but he said he'd use it if he found out who she was seeing.

He kept it hidden in a heating vent. You know, in the skirting boards?

It might be the .38.

-Get me Judge Biggs. -What?

I'm getting a search warrant to Randy's.

-Get Judge Biggs on the phone. -I should get over there.

-No! -No?

You're the guy he's talking to. So we're waiting for the warrant. Okay?

Do you know when Randy showed her the gun?

WALTER: February?

No, probably January.

Why didn't you come forward when she died?

-She didn't want anybody to know. -Even when she was dead?

Beaten to death. Her body dumped on a pile of garbage!

-I was her friend. -You weren't her friend.

-Acquaintance. We were close-- -Close?

She was attractive. Did you have sex with her?

-She was 17. -Seventeen? She was attractive.

I suppose.

Suppose? She was. So did you have sex with her?

-No, I was her mentor. -You bought her things. Gifts.

-Yes. -What kind of gifts?

-Books, mostly, that's what she loved. -Books? What about this?

-You give her this? -Yes.


-To see how she looked with it on? -No.

-No? Why jewelry? -It was just a present.

-Bought a lot of presents? Dresses? -What's wrong with that?

Nothing. I'm figuring out what kind of mentor you were.

I gave her things she couldn't have.

You wanted to fuck her, didn't you? Sick son of a bitch!

FRED: Cool off. -Sick bastard.

You have to cool down. Okay? Cool down.

All right. I need a break.

I have to apologize on behalf of my colleague.

Ahem. He's been under a lot of pressure lately. But he's a good cop.

I'd hate to see the bad cop.


RICH: Search and seizure warrant. Yes, sir.

Randy Stetz. We'll fill in the rest later.

-We got our warrant! -Thank you. We appreciate it.

Francis, come with me. Let's go!

WALTER: You're not going? ELLIE: No.


Are you not on the Connell case?

I'm covering the shooting of Detective Dormer's partner.

Heard about that. It's tragic.

Should I call about Kay's letters?

-Yeah. I'll pick them up. -Okay.


FRED: Stetz! We're coming in!



Turn the place over.


FRED: Look there! Try over there!

Rich, look here now.

RICH: I got it! Hey, Fred!

-Just in time, Dormer. RICH: Had it in the motor oil.

What the fuck is this?

He says he was with Tanya when Kay was killed.

-That's what she told me. -When?

-When I questioned her. -Were you planning on telling us?

That's what I'm doing now.

Randy and Tanya were screwing around. She's trying to protect him.

CHARLIE: And the gun? FRED: Says it isn't his.

If we get the ballistics match, he'll be forthcoming.

-So you leaving us? CHARLIE: First thing tomorrow.

If Spencer can remember where he parked the plane.

WALTER: I thought you wanted to kill me in the interview room.

-I did. Randy is in jail. -Said I'd write an ending they'd like.

You were wrapped up in details.

-The details? He's innocent. -No, he isn't.

He beat Kay. One day he'd do something worse.

You knew I planted the gun?

You wanted to help me before the tape recorder.

You had to have a wild card.

You're a good man. I know that, even if you've forgotten it.

When were you gonna point them at me? When you found Kay's dress?

Where I took the body? If you have a gun and forensics...

...wouldn't matter what I said about you killing your partner.

May I have the tape?

-Did you make any other copies? -Why would I?

Stop me from turning you in.

Or killing you.

I don't have a hold over you. You made your own choices.

Like I wasn't here. Why kill me? It won't help Randy.

After your scene at the department, it won't do you good if I'm dead.

-A lot of ways a man can die. -Like an accident? Like Hap.

Like Kay.

It took you 10 minutes to beat Kay Connell to death.

Ten fucking minutes. You calling that an accident?

It took you a fraction of a second to kill your partner.

Is that more of an accident?

Is this an accident?

If you want it to be.

It's over, Walt.

It's over. I'm telling them everything. Tell them about Hap, you, everything.

-What good would that do? -It'll end this thing.

It won't end it. You're not thinking straight.

Will you tell the truth? You shot your partner and lied about it.

To them, you're a liar and a killer. You're tainted. Forever!

You don't get to pick when you tell the truth. The truth is beyond that.

That tape was the only proof we had a conversation outside of that room.

To them, I'm a writer that Kay admired.

Randy is the killer, and you're a hero cop. Your life's work is intact.

Another abusive scumbag is in jail. Everything is as it should be.

Go back to Los Angeles. The case against Randy is pretty solid.

I can take care of everything here. I got it worked out. Go home.

Midnight of your sixth night. You broke my record, Will.



FARRELL: Randy Stetz. He was an asshole. FRED: You knew him as a kid?

-Dads were on the same boat. -Bad seed.

FRANCIS: How do you like our beer?


FRED: What Dormer needs is a little shuteye.

-White nights getting to you? -Hasn't been easy.

FARRELL: Better than winter. RICH: Got that right.

-Sun barely comes up for five months. FRED: Like being sucked into a black hole.

ELLIE: Hi, guys. -Hey, Nancy Drew. You hear? We got him.

-Yeah. I heard. -Rich found the gun.

-Something's on her mind. -I found this on the beach.

FRED: What is it? ELLIE: Shell casing, 9mm.

The murder weapon was a .38. None of us carries a 9mm.

Or backup weapon, right?

Get a hobby, would you?

It's a legitimate point, isn't it, detective?

This case is closed, Ellie. Hold the fort, boys. I'll go find a men's room.

Relieve myself of your fine Alaskan beer.

Do you want a beer or something?

No, thanks.

RICH: He's good people, right? FRED: Don't get carried away.

What has two thumbs and loves blowjobs?

FARRELL: I don't know. -This guy.



It's been something, Dormer.

It's been really great working with you.

-Run Will to the airport? ELLIE: I gotta pick up the letters.

In Umkumiut--

At his lake house. Dormer will have to leave my car at the dock.

-If that's okay with you? -Yeah, it's fine.


It's been a pleasure.

Get some sleep.


RACHEL: Detective Dormer.

What is it?

Someone's complaining about the noise. Says he can't sleep.

Something wrong?

Well, uh.... It's so fucking bright in here.

No, it's dark in here.


Will you please...?


There's this guy, Wayne Dobbs, 24. Works part time at a copy store.

Every day he watches this 8-year-old boy...

...waiting for his carpool across the street.

-This is one of your cases? -Yeah. Hap and me.

A year and a half ago.

For six months, he watches this kid.

Finally gets up the nerve.

He goes down, grabs that boy before the carpool comes...

...takes him back to his apartment...

...and keeps him there for three days.

He tortures him...

...and makes him do things.

And, finally, he's had enough. He gets a rope.

He hangs the boy in a storage space in the basement of the building.

But he didn't do it right.

Little boy's neck didn't break, so he dangled there for a while...

...and then died finally from the shock.

Landlord found the body five days later.

The second I met this guy, Dobbs, I knew he was guilty.

That's what I do. That's my job. I assign guilt.

You find the evidence...

...figure out who did it, and then you go get them and put them away.

This time there wasn't enough evidence. And it's reasonable doubt to a jury...

...because a jury never met a child murderer before.

But I have.


I went and took some blood samples from the boy's dead body...

...and I planted them... Dobbs' apartment.

I could feel it right there.

This is gonna catch up with me.

-I don't do things like that. -So how did it catch up with you?

Internal Affairs is coming down on our department.

Hap, he was gonna cut a deal...

...and bring me straight into it.

They would've reopened Dobbs' case, he would've walked.

Now that won't happen. And I don't know... I feel about that.

But Dobbs was guilty. Dobbs needed to be convicted.

So the end justifies the means.


-I'm in no position to judge. -Why not?

Two kinds of people live in Alaska.

The ones who are born here, and the ones who come here to escape something.

I wasn't born here.

Why don't you tell me what you think?

Here. Now. In this room. You and me.


I guess it's about what you thought was right at the time.

Then, what you're willing to live with.



MAN [OVER PHONE]: Nightmute Police Department.

Detective Burr.

She's not here. She left town about 20 minutes ago to go pick up--


ELLIE: Mr. Finch. WALTER: Detective Burr.

-Are they friendly? -Yeah.

Didn't expect to see you this soon.

-Sorry about the mess, doing some work. ELLIE: Oh, no problem.

Could Kay's letters strengthen the case against Randy?





Watch your head here. I've done it 1000 times.

Sorry about all the clutter. I am a pack-rat.

I keep everything.

I got them. Just don't know where.

-They've gotta be here somewhere. -Working on a new book?

-Have you read any of my books? -I haven't.


-She knows, Will. -Where is she?

She knows you killed Hap. You would've realized if you weren't strung out.

-The way she looks at you-- -Where is she?

-Calm down. It's under control. -If anything happened to her--

She's okay.

If she talks, you're fucked. Everything you've worked for is destroyed.

-Now give me-- -Show me where she is. Now.

She's okay. Listen. I mean, it's all fine.

-Let's search this place. For the dress. -What are we looking for?

-What dress? Ellie's? -Ellie's....

-Kay's! -You're rambling.

Ellie's here.

-I'm taking care of us. -Us?

-She saw the dress. -Us?

Where'd you get us? Don't talk about us.

She's alive, Will. Ellie!




Hold it!

Don't move!

You shot Detective Eckhart.

And Finch saw you do it.

Did you mean to shoot Hap?

I don't know anymore.

I, uh....

I don't know.

I couldn't see him through the fog, but when I got up close...

...he was afraid of me...

...and he thought I meant to do it, so maybe I did.

I just don't know anymore.



-Where's your gun? -He took it.

Keep your head down.

I got seven rounds in this clip. Make it last. Head down.

Okay, go! Go!

You forgot the wild card, Will.


ELLIE: Detective Dormer!

I called for backup. They'll be here soon. Dormer, just hold on.

Hold on.

Nobody needs to know.

You didn't mean to do it. I know that even if you don't.

No, don't. Don't.



Don't lose your way.

Hang on.


Let me sleep.


Just let me sleep.