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Bek’s Gallery | Ddubya Digital

Swipe Right!

 

          EXT. ZION NAT FOREST – HOT AIR BALLOON – MORNING

          The only balloon in the field, The last tie down is hurled up

          into JACK NIGHT’s rough hands. By his twin brother JAMES

          (jesse), who is videoing twith his Phone.

                              JAMES

                    up up and away…

          His niece, REBECCA “BECK” NIGHT, 13 (going on 30), is a tom

          boy, and wiz-kid, chomps on a box of cracker-jacks, exchanges

          smiles with UNCLE JACK, who tosses a couple pieces into his

          mouth. She looks over the edge of the basket in wonderment.

                              BECK

                    Finally.

          BECK is torn between the hidden prize, the descending earth,

          and waves of see-ya-later to her PARENTS and AUNT FLORENCE,

          who wave in return from their deminishing SUV below.

          

          INT. SUV – CONT

          Beck’s dad, JAMES (in his white shirt and tie) and her mom,

          MELINDA (in pearls) fret and dote at Beck, overly dressed

          next to the box trailor. (?there’d be a 2nd crew and vehicle)

                              MELINDA

                    Quite a birthday gift.

                              JAMES

                         (jealous)

                    Look how big her smile is…

          He looks past the monitor on his phone/camera, to see the

          ascending balloon with his naked eye. Waves.

                              MELINDA

                         (thru her smile, to James)

                    the whole thing is so precarious.

                              FLORENCE

                    no negative thoughts… “a ship is

                    safe in its – “

                              JAMES

                         (finishes her sentence)

                    – harbor” yep. no negative thoughts.

                              MELINDA

                    We were just hoping her Rite of

                    passage would be a pagent or tea

                    party…

          James doesn’t quite agree, but doesn’t quibble.

          Florence, rustic and comfortable, gets into the back seat,

          rolls down her window, blows a kiss to Uncle Jack who catches

          it and hands it like a butterfly to Beck.

                              FLORENCE

                    It was only a matter of time… your

                    brother and she are so alike.

                              

          EXT. PARKING LOT.

          The balloon drifts upward.

                              FLORENCE

                    Jimbo. Mel. this car Isn’t going to

                    drive it self.

          James and Melinda hop into the SUV, James strarts forward,

          hestitates, lurches forward, then slams to a stop, just

          missing a van that hestantly pulls into the lot for a view of

          the rising balloon. Japanese toursts snap photos through the

          windows of the van.

          

          INT. SUV

                              MELINDA

                         (clutching her pearls)

                    James! Give me the camera. Watch

                    where you’re driving.

                              FLORENCE

                         (namaste hands)

                    If we hurry, we can see them fly by

                    at Turner’s nch overlook…

                              

          EXT. PARKING LOT.

          Extreme wide shot of SUV cutiously exits the lot onto now

          empty backwoods road. The crew van and trailer follow.

          

          EXT. HOT AIR BALLOON – MORNING

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Ready to take her up?

                              BECK

                    Higher?

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Oh yes…

          Jack takes her hand and helps her get a feel for the

          controls. Beck tunes into the importance, opportunity, and

          stuffs the box of CJs into her back pocket and focuses her

          attention, like the captain of a ship.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Steady as she goes capt’n.

                              BECK

                    where ar we going?

                              UNCLE JACK

                    where ever the wind blows.

                              BECK

                    We follow the jetstreams.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    thats right.

                              BECK

                    i went online

                              UNCLE JACK

                    this takes us over turners place and

                    down ro the river.

                              BECK

                    then out red rock. where we’ll meet

                    up with the rents.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Rents and ‘rence.

                              BECK

                    Jimbo and M?

                              UNCLE JACK

                    and Flow. He hates that you call him

                    Jimbo. You should show respect.

                              BECK

                    I know.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    You’re a rebel.

                         (shows her a control)

                    You’re a natural.

          Beck takes in the view, Jack points out landmarks, and uses

          the compass…

                              UNCLE JACK

                    you have to respect the controls,

                    feel the craft, in the air, your life

                    is in your own hands up here,

                    (wrecklessness can kill you…true

                    for down there too.)

                              BECK

                    Wish he were more like you.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    No, you don’t.

                              BECK

                    You’d be an awesome dad.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    I make an awesome uncle, Flo an

                    awesome aunt. Parents need to be

                    stable. We like our freedom… but

                    that has had a cost too. ( his mind

                    drifts to some regret.)

                              BECK

                    (too heavy for her)

                    oh-kay…(changing the subject) I can

                    see the car up ahead…

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Turner Ranch, see the row of

                    Norfolks? They create a kind of wind

                    shield to the south… so, we catch

                    the up draft and that’ll send us down

                    the valley towards Red Rock and town.

          EXT. WID VISTA

          FLY-BY POV: At the end of the ridge of trees, the SUV. Her

          parents and aunt wave from the edge of a modest canyon. James

          recording their fly-by with his phone. Melinda trys not to be

          distracted by the disheveling wind. Her Sunday-best paying

          the cost of her daughter’s joy. The sun shines bright over

          the horizon.

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          Uncle Jack presents a wrapped gift to Beck that he kept

          hidden in the soda cooler at thier feet.

          Beck’s eyes swell to twice their size, going from captain to

          litte girl, then ceremoniously unties the ribbon and

          wrapping-paper. The carvings on the antique box esclates the

          mystery and her anticiption.

          The brass latch CLINKS open with a SLOW MOTION push from her

          thumb. The patina’d and etched telescope inside catches a

          sunbeam, that sparks, that inpires visions of voyages from

          numerous novels and childhood stories… she surveys the

          distance, assesses the compass, points to their destination.

          Jack beams proud at his protege.

          Beck hugs her uncle, then presses the scope to her eye, eager

          to see into the future.

          The balloon drifts serene along the the canyon, it diminishes

          in to the distance, as a storm gathers ahead.

          

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Odd, the forecast was clear.

                              BECK

                    What’ll we do?

                              UNCLE JACK

                         (through the telescope)

                    It’s a long way off, we’ll be on the

                    ground soon.

                              BECK

                    I’m not afraid.

          Jack adjusts the balloons fuel altitude. Beck eyes the storm,

          then they’re landing sight. Then sees the SUV negotiating the

          curving road along the canyon’s edge.

          Her father steers with one hand, holds the camera/phone with

          the other.

          

          INT. SUV

                              MELINDA

                    James! Pay attention to the road! My

                    nerves are shot already!

          Florence offers a swig of a flask to Melinda, who, almost

          without hesitation, eagerly takes a swig, then a second

          prolonged sip.

          

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          Beck pulls the telescope from her eye, clears her vision,

          then takes a look into the distance, the landing area, the

          storm, a carvan of busses leaving the wilderness park.

          Lightning strikes in the distance. The thunder rolls towards

          them.

                              BECK

                    Thats not good.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    No… it’ll be okay.

          Jack pulls out his cell phone… still far away, lightning

          strikes again. His cell phone fails.  He tries again.

                              UNCLE JACK

                         (into phone)

                    Yep. ASAP. I’m taking us down.

          Lightning, thunder.

          

          INT. SUV

          the suv stops to make a u-turn, the trailer, this isn’t good,

          the busses, the SUV, mid four point turn, the storm, the bus

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          through the telescope, Beck watches events unfold, The storm,

          the busses, the SUV, her dad and the camera, Florence on the

          phone,

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Flow… take the camera…

                              BECK

                    Jack, that tell them to hurry..

                              UNCLE JACK

                    what?

                              BECK

                    there are buses coming!

                              UNCLE JACK

                    Beck says hurry, there are busses

                    coming.

                              BECK

                    hurry hurry hurry

                              UNCLE JACK

                    she can see you, there are busses

                    heading your way.

                              BECK

                    come on…

          The storm, flashes of lightning, the phone goes dead, thunder

          shatters, his cofidence, dials the phone, Jack pulls out

          binoculars from a holster hanging in the basket, the busses,

          James gets the SUV stuck.

                              UNCLE JACK

                         (calls out)

                    move move, oh god! Florence…?

                              BECK

                    get, stop… this my

                              UNCLE JACK

                    no, no no, GET OUT, JUMP OUT!

          He turns Beck’s head to avert her eyes, but she resists.

          

          INT. SUV

          Florence opens her door, attempts to escape… on the phone,

          finally sees what Jack has failed to convey… the oncoming

          buses. She looks to the sky searches for a finsl glimpse of

          the distant balloon.

          SLOW MOTION, the two buses one after the other, smash into

          the jack-knifed/t-boned SUV.

          Beck screams in as much disbelief as utter and complete

          horror, drops the telescope to the floor of the basket, the

          nightmare, the terror, in her panic she starts to climb the

          walls of the basket, (Jackie o-like, reaching, escaping,

          looking for a crack in reality.)

          Jack grabs Beck from her vain effort, a certain death. she

          falls to her knees.

          Jack attempts to pilot the balloon… the horror of the

          moment not lost, blinding flash of lightning, the instant

          crack of thunder stops the already shattered heart of Uncle

          Jack.

          His body collapses to floor in front of Beck, he partly

          dangles from his grip of the torch control, the flame blazes,

          the balloon acelerates still higher toward space, away from

          the tradegy below, up through the storm.

          His body limp, Beck struggles to release his death grip,

          emotionally spent, like a soldier into hell.

          EXT. CLOUDS

          Extreme wide. Accelerated pull out… Beck stares out of the

          basket, out, beyond, the balloon rises up over the storm

          front, whipping up a whisp of cloud as it narrowly misses.

          beautiful, epic, biblical lightning below.

          

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          beck looks back at the tiny rising smoke from the accident

          behind. here uncle lays lifeless at her feet.

          She sobs. little girl sobs. uncontrollable cries…

          Through the tears and the terror,

                              BECK

                    This has got to be a bad dream. Uncle

                    Jack…  wake up…(to herself) wake

                    up, wake up. Beck!

          The realtiy of this most extreme of predicaments,the basket

          sways as it now drifts at the whim of the winds.

          Beck becomes conscious of te exreme cold. She spots the cell

          phone… 911,

                              BECK

                         (to other end)

                    police? oh my god, i need help, …i

                    don’t know, we’re In my uncle’s hot

                    air balloon…heading toward Red

                    Rock… hello? …He’s had a heart

                    attack or something.. there was

                    lightning, and my parents, there was

                    a bus, I think they… hello? hello?

          Tears stream down her face, she tries the gps, google maps,

          it’s dead. She starts to panic.

                              BECK

                         (upward, outward)

                    what! what do i do? i don’t

                    understand. this doesnt make sense.

          Looks to her uncle.

          She resolves to take charge, attempts to pilot the balloon..

          She fires up the torch, seems to recover… for a while.

                              BECK

                    oh my god, the altitude! there’s less

                    air, We’re too high! How do I go

                    down?

          She looks around for some clue on how to descend.

                              BECK

                    more weight… less air… a release

                    valve….

          Looks up into the swollen balloon still inflated overhead.

          

                    it’s got to be just right, too

                    much…. too fast…

          she starts reaching randomly, touches various parts, hoping

          her hands discover what to do. Not thinking clearly

          

                    (to herself) …I plummet to my

                    death.

          She accidently feeds the flame, the balloon jolts up. Her own

          screeetch suprises herself.

          She releases the handle as she struggles to not hyper

          ventilate.

          Just regaining her composure. She blacks out. Collapsing to

          the basket floor, face to face with her uncle. eye to eye.

          he blinks.

                         

          EXT. CLOUDS

          The balloon drifts, tiny in the vast sky.

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          Beck Wakes up… seems like hours, but it is only minutes.

          Jack’s waiting eye meets her eye,

                              UNCLE JACK

                         (barely)

                    There she is…

          Beck screetches and jolts up.

          then brings her head back down to make sure… he smiles.

                              BECK

                    Uncle Jack? your okay!!!

                              UNCLE JACK

                         (barely)

                    I don’t think so, I can’t move.

          Beck attempts to roll him over, but his size and position

          make it impossible.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    tablecloth

                              BECK

                    table cloth?

                              UNCLE JACK

                    trick… (attempts to use his eye to

                    show her), TaaDaa…

                              BECK

                    table cloth trick?

          She realizes what he means, then grabs the underside of his

          jacket, and pulls the fabric in a sudden and fluid move he is

          facing upward. Half his face embossed with the floor of the

          basket is almost horrific. She falls back from the momenum

          and fright.

          Jack half smiles with relief, he looks up into the

          tear-filled eyes of Beck.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    9:30 Beck

          Beck cocks her head, bewildered til it hits her.

          

          INT. BALLOON BASKET

          Beck throws herself to the floor of the basket her head right

          next to Jack’s, gaining his upward perspective.

                              UNCLE JACK

                    9:30 left hand, righty tighty…(Beck

                    starts), wait, and right hand, 3:00,

                    nose down…

          EXT. PARKING LOT. (RED ROCK FURTHER) – HOURS LATER

          the basket crashes hard but safely, the balloon deflates, but

          drags the basket, Beck tumbles out, devastated. relieved. she

          is met with several EMTs.

          The balloon crew remove Jack, someone covers his head and

          torso with a their jacket… they are distraught – in disbelief.