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All of Us Strangers (2023) | Transcript

A screenwriter drawn back to his childhood home enters into a fledgling relationship with his downstairs neighbor while discovering a mysterious new way to heal from losing his parents 30 years ago.
All of Us Strangers (2023)

All of Us Strangers (2023)
Genre: Drama, Romance, Fantasy
Director:
Andrew Haigh
Stars:
Andrew Scott, Paul Mescal, Carter John Grout, Jamie Bell, Claire Foy

Plot: One night in his near-empty tower block in contemporary London, Adam (Andrew Scott) has a chance encounter with a mysterious neighbor Harry (Paul Mescal), which punctures the rhythm of his everyday life. As a relationship develops between them, Adam is preoccupied with memories of the past and finds himself drawn back to the suburban town where he grew up, and the childhood home where his parents (Claire Foy and Jamie Bell), appear to be living, just as they were on the day they died, 30 years before.

* * *

(SOMBER MUSIC PLAYING)

(MUSIC SWELLS)

MAN: (ON TV) Meanwhile, work goes on for the Brits who relocated to the Costa.

Running a bar in the sun is the classic British dream.

It can easily turn into a nightmare, but Gary and Cherry from Macclesfield have made it work.

The Bamboo Bar is a success.

(PEOPLE SHOUT INDISTINCTLY ON TV)

(INHALES DEEPLY)

(EXHALES SOFTLY)

(YAWNS)

(FRIDGE WHIRRING)

(FIRE ALARM BEEPING)

(BEEPING CONTINUES)

(ALARM CONTINUES BEEPING)

(CAR HORN BLARES)

(THE POWER OF LOVE PLAYING ON TV)

♪ (SINGING) Ay, ay, ay, ay ♪

(DOORBELL RINGING)

♪ Feels like fire. ♪

♪ I’m so in love with you ♪

(KNOCKING AT DOOR)

(SINGING STOPS)

(DOOR OPENS)

Hello.

Hello.

I saw you looking at me from the street.

I’ve seen you a bunch of times coming and going with your head down.

One day, it’ll be for real, that alarm.

(CHUCKLES)

ADAM: Hmm.

We’re basically the only ones here.

Can you fucking believe that?

I mean they haven’t got security guards yet.

I’m Harry.

Adam.

How do you cope?

With, with what?

Listen.

(LOW RUMBLING)

(CHUCKLES)

It’s so quiet.

I mean, London’s out there

but we can’t hear a fucking thing.

(SIGHS)

(CLICKS TONGUE) I play music, right,

but it’s worse when it ends.

Yeah, I even got one of those, um,

white noise machines, right?

But it’s like there’s someone

in the corner of the room whispering about me.

I mean, we can’t even open, the windows, but I guess

they don’t really want us to jump.

It’s bad for business. You know,

bodies broken on the concrete.

I mean, who’s gonna move in then? (CHUCKLES)

Drink?

It’s Japanese.

It’s meant to be the best in the world,

but I, I couldn’t tell you why, so…

No, thanks.

Okay, um…

Okay. How about I come in anyway?

If not for a drink,

then for whatever else you might want.

Um…

I don’t think that’s a good idea.

(CHUCKLES) Do I scare you?

No.

We don’t have to do anything if I’m not your type.

(SOFTLY) There’s vampires at my door.

Huh.

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

(ELEVATOR BELL DINGS)

(SOMBER MUSIC PLAYING)

(UPBEAT MUSIC PLAYING ON RADIO)

(KEYBOARD CLACKING)

(CLATTERING)

(UPBEAT MUSIC CONTINUES)

(MUSIC ON RADIO FADES OUT)

(OMINOUS MUSIC PLAYING)

(LIGHTER CLATTERS)

(SIGHS)

(TENSE MUSIC PLAYING)

(INDISTINCT ANNOUNCEMENT ON PA)

(TRAIN RUMBLES PAST)

(BIRDS CHIRPING)

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

(CHILDREN SPEAKING INDISTINCTLY)

(LEAVES RUSTLING)

(INSECTS CHITTERING)

(BREATHES DEEPLY)

(BOTTLES CLINK)

(TIRES SCREECHING)

(SCREECHING RECEDES)

Hi.

Hi.

I bought something strong for a night like this.

No thanks.

Shall we go?

(LIGHTER CLICKS)

Go where?

Home.

(DOORBELL RINGS)

She’s gonna be over the moon to see ya.

Guess who I found loitering in the park.

WOMAN: Is it him?

Oh, yeah, it’s definitely him.

Look in his eyes.

Yes, it is you.

Hi.

Hi.

Don’t just stand there. Get yourself inside.

DAD: So, where are you living now?

Not around here, I’m sure.

ADAM: Uh… I’m, I’m in London.

MUM: Fancy. DAD: Whereabouts?

MUM: Do you live by yourself?

DAD: Do you own your own place?

Uh, yeah, it’s just a, it’s just a flat.

What did I tell ya? What did I tell ya?

I told you he’d be doing well for himself, didn’t I?

Can’t be cheap living up there in the smoke.

And what is it that you do?

I’m a writer.

And what did I tell you?

No, no, no.

I’m not particularly rich or anything. Not really.

Well, I always knew you’d be creative.

And what kind of writer are you?

You know how I love, um, Stephen King.

Carrie, Cujo, Different Seasons.

No, no, no. I’m not a proper writer.

I, I write scripts.

Uh, for film, TV. When I have to.

(CHUCKLES) A writer.

God, this is so bloody exciting.

If I knew the neighbors,

I’d run over and I’d tell them right now.

I’ve always said that writers know less about the real world

than almost anyone else.

MUM: Mmm.

What the hell would you know?

(ADAM CHUCKLES)

You can barely write

joined up.

That’s true. But…

(MUM EXHALES)

A writer.

Our son.

DAD: We’re very bloody pleased

to see you doing so well, then.

Yeah.

Enough of that poofy shit.

Our boy’s back home.

MUM: Hmm.

What are you puttin’ on?

DAD: Oh, you’ll see.

(THE POWER OF LOVE BY JENNIFER RUSH PLAYING)

(DAD GROANS, EXHALES)

MUM: Oh, do you remember

your little red car that you had?

You loved it and you wanted

to take it out onto the main road,

and drive it with all the big cars.

ADAM: Yeah. That’s my first memory, actually.

DAD: It was a Ford Granada that hit him, wasn’t it?

No, it, it was…

Yeah. It was.

It was racing green. Do you remember that?

MUM: Mmm. DAD: It, it, flung you

like a rag doll.

You went so high up in the air.

I’ll never forget it.

Oh, but you were fine, though.

You were fine. You had a couple of bruises.

I think they thought I was exaggerating

when I took you in.

What about that one Bonfire Night

when you lost it?

You remember that Bonfire Night?

How old were you? Six?

MUM: No, he was not. He was older than that.

DAD: Well, when the fireworks went off,

poor boy, started screaming and howling.

I had to carry him all the way home.

ADAM: You did?

Yeah.

You fell asleep on my shoulder.

I don’t remember that.

DAD: You were, you were really beside yourself.

You were really having a hard time,

and I was trying,

we were just trying to get you to enjoy the fireworks.

And you didn’t…

MUM: You’ve always been a sensitive boy, haven’t you?

ADAM: Maybe.

Are you still afraid of fireworks now?

ADAM: (CHUCKLES) No!

MUM: Do you know who you sound like?

You sound just like my mother.

He does.

Doesn’t he? You noticed that?

DAD: Yeah, no, he does.

MUM: You did say something earlier.

DAD: Yeah. It’s when, it’s when you said,

it’s when you said, “I’m not a proper writer.”

MUM: Say it again. DAD: Go on.

MUM: Say it again. ADAM: Don’t make me say it.

MUM: Say it. DAD: Come on. Just say it.

MUM: Say, “a proper writer,” again.

ADAM: Like Nan or like me?

DAD: No. Say it like you. MUM: “Like Nan or like me.”

DAD: Say it like you.

(MUM LAUGHS)

It’s so bloody lovely to see you again.

ADAM: Yeah.

Weren’t sure if we ever would.

Here you are.

Here I am.

Come back soon, hmm?

One of us will be in.

Hmm?

Please.

Yeah, I will.

Good.

(MUM SHIVERS)

Let’s go in, eh?

Night.

Good night, sweetheart.

Good night, son.

Night.

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

Hello.

Hi.

I’m really sorry about the other night.

Oh, that’s all right.

Don’t worry about it.

(ELEVATOR THUDS)

See ya.

See ya.

I actually do like whiskey if you want, um,

wanna have a drink or…

(ELEVATOR DOORS CLOSE)

(EXHALES)

(CLOCK TICKING)

(GRUNTS)

(SIGHS)

(BUILD BY THE HOUSEMARTINS PLAYING ON RECORD PLAYER)

(KEYBOARD CLACKING)

♪ MAN: (SINGING) Clambering ♪ ♪ men in big bad boots. ♪

♪ Dug up my den, dug up my roots. ♪

♪ Treated us like plasticine town ♪

(PEN CLICKING)

♪ They built us up and knocked us down. ♪

♪ From Meccano to Legoland. ♪

♪ Here they come with a brick in their hand. ♪

♪ Men with heads filled up with sand. ♪

♪ Let’s build… ♪

♪ Let’s build a house… ♪

ADAM: Hi.

(MUSIC STOPS)

HARRY: Hello.

Hi.

(ELEVATOR DINGS)

(CHUCKLES) Hi.

Do you wanna come in?

HARRY: Sure.

ADAM: Do you want a drink?

Yeah, what have you got?

Uh… I got vodka and some beer.

I got some weed if you prefer that.

Yeah, weed’s better.

I’m off alcohol…

Do you like living here?

ADAM: I think I’ll like it more

when people move in.

If people move in.

You got friends nearby?

No, not really.

Do you?

No, not really.

Most of my friends have moved out of London.

Wanna have gardens for their kids,

and they want to be near the grandparents

so they can look after the kids.

HARRY: I’m guessing you didn’t want to move too?

Uh, no.

What am I gonna do in Dorking?

It’s not for people like me.

I’m just checking. You are queer, right?

(BOTH CHUCKLING)

Yeah. Yeah.

HARRY: That’s good.

(CHUCKLES)

Or gay.

Right.

Queer, I’m not…

I can’t get used to calling myself queer.

It was always such an insult.

Hmm.

It’s probably why we hate “gay” so much now.

I mean, it was always like, um,

(CHUCKLES) uh “Your haircut’s gay,”

or “This sofa’s gay,”.

“Your trainers are gay.”

“Your schoolbag’s gay.” (SNORTS)

Yeah.

Queer does feel polite, somehow, though, you know.

It’s like, um…

I don’t know, it’s like

all the dick sucking’s been taken out.

(BOTH CHUCKLING)

Yeah. I’m assuming you’re not with anyone.

I never see you with anyone.

No.

No.

You often single?

Am I often single?

Mmm-hmm.

Uh…

I suppose so. Yeah.

Are you?

Yeah.

Yeah, but not for want of trying.

(CLICKS TONGUE)

How about I kiss ya?

Yeah, all right.

(BOTH MOANING)

ADAM: Ooh! (COUGHS)

(CLEARS THROAT) Sorry.

No.

You all right?

No. Yeah, yeah.

Just haven’t done…

(LAUGHS)

I haven’t done this in a while.

I have to remember to, remember to breathe.

Okay.

Yeah, yeah. It’s okay.

Okay.

It’s okay.

You all right?

ADAM: Uh-huh.

Yeah.

(HARRY GRUNTS)

(MUSIC BUILDS)

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

(ADAM CHUCKLES)

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

(CHUCKLES)

HARRY: Is this you?

Afraid it is.

You were cute.

I hate my photos.

I was a fat kid.

Right, but,

when you’re a fat kid, no one asks

why you don’t have a girlfriend.

(BOTH CHUCKLING)

We’d have been friends for sure, though.

Bunked off football to spy on the boys.

Is this your dad?

Yeah.

He’s handsome.

Yeah.

I’m… I’m trying to write about them at the moment.

Is that what you do?

ADAM: Yeah.

HARRY: How’s it going?

ADAM: Uh, strangely.

I don’t see my dad much.

Do you, do you see yours, no?

No, they died.

Just before I was twelve.

HARRY: Both of them?

Yeah. Yeah, car crash.

Not the most original of deaths.

(CHUCKLES)

I’m really sorry.

No, thanks, it was a long time ago.

Yeah, I don’t think that matters.

Well.

I’d like to see you again.

Yeah, okay.

I could stay the night if you…

How about, actually, better idea…

Not tonight. Yeah?

No, no. I would like to s…

No, you…

I would like

you don’t need to explain.

To see you again. I’m just…

Okay?

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

ADAM: Okay.

Thanks.

(TRAIN COMPARTMENT CLATTERING)

(RAIN PATTERING)

(DOORBELL RINGING)

Sweetheart, you came back.

Of course I came back.

Jesus, you’re sodden.

Come on, take it all off.

No, I’m, I’m not taking my clothes off.

Don’t be silly, it’s only me. Come on, arms up.

I’ll put them in the dryer.

It’s just me today. Is that all right?

Yeah, of course it is.

Good.

There’s so much I want to know.

I want to hear everything.

Right, go on. Upstairs, get changed.

My goodness. This is so exciting.

{\an8}(CHUCKLES)

(SNICKERS)

(FOOTSTEPS APPROACHING)

(KNOCKING ON DOOR)

(BOTH CHUCKLING)

MUM: Suppose nothing’s gonna fit you anymore, is it?

Nope.

(MUM CHUCKLES)

Yeah. Well, I brought you some of your dad’s things instead.

Okay.

(CLICKS TONGUE) Oh, Look.

Come on, take these off as well

and I’ll put them in to dry with the rest.

Uh…

(MUM SIGHS)

Oh, will you take them off, Adam?

Honestly.

(CHUCKLES)

God, look at you.

What?

You were just a boy.

And now you’re not.

No.

You look totally different, but it’s still you.

Well, I thought you’d be hairier.

Like your dad.

(CHUCKLES)

Okay, sorry.

(MUM CHUCKLES)

I like a hairy chest, myself.

ADAM: (CHUCKLES) Okay.

Christ, you know who you remind me of?

Uh, who?

You look just like my dad.

Really?

MUM: Hmm.

How I remember him anyway, when I was a little girl.

God, isn’t that mad?

It’s like seeing you both at exactly the same time.

(TIMER DINGS)

(GASPS) Oh.

I’ve made your favorite.

Well, I hope it’s still your favorite.

I’ll just go and pop the kettle on,

and then you can tell me everything.

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

Delicious.

MUM: Good.

Now, your dad told me not to ask,

and I don’t see a wedding ring,

so I’m presuming you’re not married,

but have you got a girlfriend?

Hmm?

I’m picturing her with brown hair,

not too skinny.

Smart, obviously.

Well?

Well, what?

MUM: Do you?

I don’t have a girlfriend. No.

That’s a shame.

I don’t have a girlfriend because I’m not into girls,

(CLEARS THROAT) into women.

What’d you mean?

I mean…

I’m gay. (CHUCKLES)

As in homosexual?

As in that, yeah.

Really?

Yeah.

Since when?

Uh, since a long time.

How long?

Forever.

You don’t look gay.

Well, I’m not sure what that means.

It means what it means. You know what it means.

(ADAM CHUCKLES)

Well, bet you’re glad

you don’t know the neighbors now.

Hmm. I must admit I’m a bit surprised.

Not really sure what I feel about it.

What, you didn’t, didn’t think it would be a possibility?

No, of course not.

What parent wants to think that about their child?

No parent that I know.

Well, I’m very okay with it, so.

But aren’t people nasty to you?

Um, no, no.

No, things are different now.

What, so they aren’t nasty?

Not out loud, anyway.

Well, does everybody know?

I mean, are you open about it? I mean…

I don’t know, down the High Street at WHSmith’s?

Well, it depends on the, on the street.

Yeah. Everybody knows, everyone’s fine.

Well, don’t you want to get married and have kids?

I can have kids.

Men can marry. Women, too.

What, to each other?

Yeah.

Why?

What do you mean “why”?

Well, isn’t that like having your cake and eating it?

So, do you want to get married and have kids?

I don’t know. It wasn’t a possibility

for such a long time.

So, I didn’t think it was worth the effort

of wanting to get married and have kids.

(CHUCKLES)

MUM: Huh.

Oh. (MUMBLES)

(WATER RUNNING)

You okay?

Hmm, I’m fine.

Sure?

(EXHALES) I suppose I never did know what was going on

in that odd little head of yours.

You were always running away. Do you remember?

Yeah.

MUM: There was that time

that you got as far as the train station,

but then you’d lost your money

and so you couldn’t buy a ticket.

Do you remember that?

ADAM: Yes, it was Granny’s five-pound note.

Yeah, that was it.

Where were you hoping to go?

Don’t know.

London, I guess.

MUM: London?

God.

Oh, there was that time that you got as far as

the bottom of the garden, but then you cut your thumb

on an old milk bottle and you came running back up

all sheepish with blood all over your shirt,

and you were banging and banging

on that window to be let in.

Yeah.

There it is.

Just.

(ADAM SNIFFLES) Hmm.

They say it’s a very lonely kind of life.

(TENSE MUSIC PLAYING)

They don’t actually say that anymore.

MUM: So, you’re not lonely?

If I am, it’s not because I’m gay.

Not really.

Not really.

Oh, God. And what about this awful, ghastly disease?

I’ve seen the adverts on the, on the news, and the,

and with the gravestone.

Should I be worried about that?

No. Jesus.

Everything’s different now.

Everything’s different.

Well, I guess I wouldn’t know about that.

Your clothes will be dry now.

You should take these flapjacks with you,

if you want. I won’t be eating them.

(TRAIN WHOOSHING)

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

(ADAM GRUNTS)

(SHOES THUDDING ON FLOOR)

(ELEVATOR DINGS)

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

What’s wrong?

(ELEVATOR DINGS)

I’m okay.

I just got a bit of a chill.

Hey, you’re hot.

Yeah.

I was just, I was just…

I just got caught in the rain.

Okay.

Well, why don’t I run you a hot bath?

My nan says there’s literally nothing

a hot bath couldn’t solve.

I don’t really like baths.

Fuck off. Who doesn’t like baths?

(WATER RUNNING)

You don’t need to be shy around me.

Yes, that’s easier said than done.

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

Would you like me to close my eyes?

Yes, please.

Okay. (CHUCKLES)

Better?

Yeah.

HARRY: Hmm.

HARRY: Been thinking about you all week, today.

ADAM: Hmm.

HARRY: Was thinking about

watching crappy TV with you on a Friday night.

HARRY: Eating take-away on your sofa.

Watching all the episodes of Top of the Pops

from before I was born.

(BOTH CHUCKLING)

HARRY: Yeah. I thought about something else, too.

Thought about fucking you.

Yeah?

HARRY: Yeah.

Or you fuck me. I don’t really care which.

Are you into that?

Yeah.

It’s okay if you’re not.

We all don’t need to be into fucking.

Well, I wasn’t for the longest time,

for obvious reasons.

HARRY: Obvious reasons?

I thought that if I fucked anybody, I’d die.

It’s probably pretty difficult for you to imagine, isn’t it?

HARRY: A little.

(HARRY MOANING)

(MOANING)

ADAM: Yeah. Come on.

(GENTLE MUSIC PLAYING)

You said the other day you don’t see your dad much.

Yeah.

What about your mum?

Yeah, same.

How come?

They know you’re queer?

Yeah, course.

ADAM: Are they okay with it?

Yeah.

They’re okay.

I mean, they’re really old school.

Probably less okay than everyone’s meant to be.

Yeah. But they got used to it, sort of, it’s just,

they don’t say too much.

You could say that I have

drifted to the edge.

Or right up to the edge, almost.

Over the edge.

What’s that mean?

I’m edge of the family.

My sister and her kids,

and my older brother who just got married,

they’ve all, they got this spot in the center.

But it’s okay.

ADAM: Why is it okay?

Because,

I don’t go home much.

Does that make you sad?

Um. No, I think it’s just inevitable, really.

Why?

(CHUCKLING)

Um… (INHALES)

I’ve always felt like a stranger in my own family.

And then,

coming out just puts a name

to that difference that’s always been there.

So, in the end,

it’s not really anyone’s fault.

Hmm. What’s wrong?

It’s funny.

Things are better now. Course they are,

but doesn’t take much to make you feel the way you felt,

back there again, skin all raw.

Am I still hot?

HARRY: Just a little.

You wanna stay the night?

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

(TREES RUSTLING)

(INAUDIBLE CONVERSATION)

(DOORBELL RINGING)

DAD: Sure she won’t be long.

It’s okay.

Just wanted to talk to her.

Yeah, I know you do.

This was your granddad’s favorite.

I never really liked it much at the time,

but it’s grown on me.

If you wanna see your mum really lose her shit,

go ahead and break that bloody thing.

(I DON’T WANT TO SET THE WORLD ON FIRE PLAYING)

Come on then, lad. Sit yourself down.

♪ MAN: (SINGING) I don’t want. ♪

♪ To set the world on fire. ♪

♪ I just want to start… ♪

Well, she told you then?

Was scared you wouldn’t come back.

But you know what your mum’s like.

You know, don’t be, don’t be too disappointed in her.

No, I’m not.

Yeah, she just needs

to rearrange some things in her head,

and all the stories that she’s built up.

Yeah. She’ll soon realize it’s not actually about her.

What about you?

What about me?

What do you think?

Well, I mean, it was hardly a shock.

I always knew you were a bit tutti-frutti.

Couldn’t throw a ball for shit,

no matter how many times I tried to teach you.

Jesus.

Couldn’t for shit.

Couldn’t do it.

You make me sound like a horrible cliché.

Well, can you throw a ball?

Not at all.

Well, there you go.

(ADAM CHUCKLES)

(DAD CHUCKLES)

♪ To set the world on fire… ♪

Would you have liked me to have known?

I don’t know.

I would hear you crying in your room after school.

Did the boys bully you, then?

Not just the boys.

What would they do?

Oh, call me a girl,

ignore me, refuse to play with me,

stick my head down the toilet,

flick drawing pins in my face.

Christ’s sake.

Yeah. Well, you know,

kids are little cunts, aren’t they?

(CLEARS THROAT)

♪ And that one desire is you. ♪

♪ And I know… ♪

So, why didn’t you come into my room

if you heard me crying?

Why didn’t you tell me what was happening at school?

You know, you answer me first.

Be honest.

I just didn’t want to think of you as the kind of boy

that the other lads would pick on.

And I knew that if I was at your school,

I’d probably have picked on you too.

Yeah, I think I always probably thought that, anyway.

Probably why I didn’t tell you

what was happening to me at school.

♪ Set the world on… ♪

Well…

♪ Fire ♪

(DAD EXHALES)

♪ I just want to start. ♪

♪ A flame ♪

(MUSIC STOPS) You know, when she told me,

it did make me think about all the jokes that we make,

and, you know, we did impressions

of your English teacher,

when he went around with his limp wrist.

(CHUCKLES)

You told me not to cross my legs,

like a woman over, and over, and over again.

Did I?

ADAM: Yeah, I still…

Still think about it every time I cross my legs.

I have good memories, too.

DAD: Yeah, I hope so. Fuck.

I hope so. I hope you did. (CHUCKLES)

Remember you used to love decorating the tree.

(DAD CHUCKLES)

That’s…

ADAM: You were crazy for it, every year.

And you’d always let me, um,

put the fairy on top of the tree.

The fairy. I did.

(CLOCK TICKING)

(DAD SOBS)

I’m sorry I never came in your room

when you were crying.

No, really, it’s okay.

DAD: No, it’s not okay, though, really, is it?

It’s not.

Dad. Dad, I get it.

It was, it was so long…

(SOBBING)

(VOICE BREAKS) It was so long ago. Stop!

(SOBS)

Can I hug you now?

Yeah, please.

(SNIFFLES)

(SNIFFLING)

DAD: You’re all right, son.

You’re all right.

(PENSIVE MUSIC PLAYING)

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

ADAM: After this,

I wanna go out.

You,

and me…

(HARRY MOANING)

ADAM: Together…

(HARRY CHUCKLING)

ADAM: Into the world.

(I WANT A DOG BY PET SHOP BOYS PLAYING ON SPEAKERS)

(INDISTINCT CHATTERING)

♪ MAN: (SINGING) My dog will ♪ ♪ bark at any passers-by. ♪

♪ Oh, you can get lonely. ♪

♪ I want a dog… ♪

What do you want to drink?

Uh… A pint.

Thank you.

Sorry.

Whoops, sorry.

Sorry.

Ah fuck. I’ve missed this feeling.

I can’t hear ya.

Do you dance?

If I’m wasted enough.

Then let’s get wasted enough.

(DANCE MUSIC PLAYING)

C’mon.

HARRY: Yeah.

ADAM: Where’d you get this?

HARRY: Found it in my wallet.

Fuck knows how long it’s been there.

(SNIFFS)

(ADAM SNIFFS)

I think that’s Ketamine.

Really?

Mmm-hmm.

Have you done it before?

No.

Will you look after me?

I’ll do my best.

Okay. That’ll have to do.

Okay.

(DEATH OF A PARTY BY BLUR PLAYING OVER SPEAKERS)

♪ MAN: (SINGING) The death of the party. ♪

♪ Came as no surprise. ♪

♪ Why did we bother. ♪

♪ Should have stayed away. ♪

♪ Another night. ♪

♪ And I thought well well. ♪

♪ Go to another party. ♪

♪ And hang myself. ♪

♪ Gently on the shelf ♪

(INAUDIBLE CONVERSATION)

♪ Another night. ♪

♪ And I thought well well. ♪

♪ Go to another party. ♪

♪ And hang myself. ♪

♪ Gently on the shelf. ♪

♪ Another party. ♪

♪ And I thought well well. ♪

♪ Go to another party. ♪

♪ And hang myself ♪

(MUSIC GOES OFF TUNE)

(TEMPO DROPS)

(SCREAMING)

(MUSIC FADES OUT)

(MAN ON TV SPEAKING INDISTINCTLY)

MAN: (ON TV) …for the next 30 minutes,

some surely good tunes coming your way.

Like down here, we have

at number four, The Pet Shop Boys

and You Were Always on My Mind.

(ALWAYS ON MY MIND BY PET SHOP BOYS PLAYING ON TV)

(FIRE CRACKLING)

(DAD GRUNTS)

MUM: Adam.

What’s wrong?

Oh, you’re really hot.

No, he’s really hot.

What?

Now, here you go.

Come on.

Squeeze in, squeeze in, squeeze in.

♪ MAN: (SINGING) Little things ♪ ♪ I should have said and done. ♪

♪ I never took the time. ♪

♪ You were always on my mind. ♪

♪ You were always on my mind ♪

♪ (SINGING) Maybe I didn’t hold you. ♪

♪ All those lonely, lonely times. ♪

♪ And I guess I never told you. ♪

♪ I’m so happy that you’re mine. ♪

♪ If I made you feel second best ♪

♪ I’m so sorry I was blind. ♪

♪ You were always on my mind. ♪

♪ BOTH: (SINGING) Tell me. ♪

♪ Tell me that your sweet love hasn’t died. ♪

♪ Give me. ♪

♪ One more chance to keep you satisfied. ♪

♪ Satisfied ♪

(DAD VOCALIZING)

Okay, get together.

Yeah. Yeah. Are you ready? I’m gonna press it.

Okay, it’s going.

All right, we have to be quick ’cause it goes off in a sec.

It’s about 10 seconds.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.

Here we go!

Merry Christmas. (CHUCKLES)

Merry Christmas!

Go…

♪ MAN: (SINGING) You ♪ ♪ were always on my mind. ♪

♪ Tell me ♪

(MUSIC SLOWS DOWN, GOES OFF TUNE)

Is this real?

MUM: Does it feel real?

Yeah.

There you go, then.

ADAM: For how long, though?

I can’t answer that.

I suppose we don’t get to decide when it’s over.

ADAM: You’re not going out now, are you?

MUM: (ECHOES) Where would we go?

The Walsh’s.

MUM: The Walsh’s?

The Walsh’s.

ADAM: No, no. Wait.

Promise me you’re not gonna go out now.

MUM: I promise.

We’re just gonna be asleep next door.

Promise. (ECHOES)

All right?

Get some sleep.

(DOOR CLOSES)

(SIGHS)

ADAM: No.

(KNOCKING ON DOOR)

MUM: What is it, sweetheart?

I can’t sleep.

Well, do you wanna get in?

Can I?

‘Course, you can.

(DAD GRUNTS)

Still smells the same in here.

You’d creep in here night after night,

saying you couldn’t sleep.

You’re always scared of something.

Murderers breaking in, or rabies,

or nuclear war.

Do people still get rabies?

No.

Oh!

I was desperate for you to grow up

just so I could get a good night’s sleep.

(CLOCK TICKING)

Sorry.

What are you sorry for?

I’m the sorry one.

I should’ve relished you driving me bananas.

Where did you go?

You know, afterwards.

I lived with Granny.

She took me to Dublin.

Yeah, I thought so.

Why didn’t you live with his lot?

Why didn’t you live with Granny May?

They said she was too heartbroken.

About what?

Well, she’d lost her son.

Oh, I see. But my mother was fine

about losing her only daughter?

No, no.

She was not fine.

I just can’t believe that she

got to look after you and I didn’t.

Are any of them still around now?

No.

Guess they wouldn’t be, would they?

And how did you get on over there with Mum?

Did you manage to fit in better at school?

I made sure I did.

I hate that we weren’t around

when you needed us most, sweetheart.

And I hate even more

that I wasn’t there before that, not really.

No, that’s not true.

Come on. Well, I was hardly Mother of the Year, was I?

But I like to think that

I would’ve got better at it in time.

You know, given time.

You know, when I was a teenager,

or even later, into my twenties,

I used to plot it all out.

What’d you mean?

What we might’ve done together

in intricate detail. Trips to the Whitgift Centre

birthdays,

trips to London,

The Planetarium, the London Dungeon.

Oh, I always wanted to go there.

(CHUCKLES)

I know.

(CHUCKLES)

There were holidays

that we might’ve gone on together.

Did we make it to Disneyland?

We did.

When I was 14.

It rained nonstop.

Oh!

And they shut down Space Mountain.

And we fought every day.

Why did we have to fight?

Because that’s what everyone did with their parents.

They fought and bickered

and pretended that they

were ruining each other’s lives.

Did we make up?

No, we didn’t need to make up.

We were together,

so,

so it didn’t matter.

You okay?

(SOBS) No.

DAD: You’re okay, son.

You’re okay.

What are you doing here?

You’re not supposed to be here.

(VEHICLE APPROACHING)

(GRAVEL CRUNCHING)

(CAR DOOR OPENS)

(INDISTINCT RADIO CHATTER)

(DOOR CLOSES)

(INDISTINCT RADIO CHATTER)

(KNOCKING AT DOOR)

(PHONE RINGING)

(GASPS)

(EERIE MUSIC PLAYING)

(INDISTINCT ANNOUNCEMENT ON PA)

(EERIE MUSIC PLAYING)

(COUGHING)

(BRAKES SQUEALING)

(SCREAMING)

ADAM: Mum? Mum?

(YELLS)

(HARRY SHUSHING)

(ADAM BREATHING HEAVILY)

You’re okay.

You’re okay.

(ADAM SOBBING)

What day… What day is it?

Sunday.

Why is it…

How come… How… Why is it still Sunday?

HARRY: You kept screaming out for your parents

over and over again in the club.

And then,

I didn’t know what to do so I just,

took you back here and lay with you till you fell asleep.

(ADAM BREATHING HEAVILY)

HARRY: You looked so scared.

I am.

HARRY: Hey, come here. Come here.

Hey, come here.

(SHUSHING)

(ADAM GROANING)

I’m here. It’s okay.

(ADAM CRYING)

(ADAM CONTINUES CRYING)

You’re okay.

ADAM: I was sleeping in their bed

the night they went out.

I was meant to go with them.

To Christmas drinks at the Walsh’s.

Around midnight, um…

Two police came to the door. A man and a woman.

He had really beautiful, kind eyes,

and this thick, dark stubble.

Looked like it had been drawn on.

The car skidded on black ice. (SIGHS)

Both of them had been drinking.

Dad was killed right away, but they took Mum to, uh,

Saint Mary’s in Croydon, and she died a few days later.

Did you get to see her?

What’d you mean? To say goodbye?

Mmm-hmm. Yeah.

No.

My granny thought it would be too scarring.

(ADAM SNIFFLES)

Mum went through the windscreen

and she lost an eye,

so she was pretty fucked up.

Jesus.

Yeah.

I went looking for that eye.

I don’t know why. Didn’t want anyone else to find it.

Thought it would be on the side of the road.

(CHUCKLING)

Staring up at me. “Hi.” (CHUCKLES)

I did find a tiny piece

of the windscreen glass, though.

In my head, it had blood on it,

but maybe that’s not true.

The nurse said that Mum woke up

just before she died.

She must’ve been so confused. Can’t hardly see and…

Dad wasn’t there, I wasn’t there.

I can’t even begin to imagine how you felt.

How lonely you must’ve been.

Yeah, but, like, I’d always felt lonely,

even before.

This was a new feeling.

Like

a terror,

that I’d always be alone now.

And then, as I got older, that feeling just,

just solidified.

Just a…

Just a knot here all the time.

And then losing them,

it just got tangled up with all the other stuff,

about being gay,

and just feeling, like,

the future doesn’t matter.

Does that make sense?

Yeah.

Mmm-hmm.

I know how easy it can be to stop caring about yourself.

Yeah.

Yeah.

Adam.

Will you come with me?

(CHUCKLES)

Where to?

Just let me show you.

(DOORBELL RINGING)

Whose house is this?

My parents’.

Yeah. Who lives here now?

It’s okay. Don’t worry.

Hello?

Adam.

(KNOCKING ON DOOR)

ADAM: Hello?

Where are they?

HARRY: Who?

ADAM: Hello?

HARRY: Who?

ADAM: My parents.

This is our house. This is our kitchen.

This is our wallpaper. That’s our table where we had

fish and chips every Friday night,

so my mother could pretend

we were still Catholic.

Adam I want to go home. Let me take you home.

This is my home.

No, it used to be.

It’s not anymore. Adam!

Mum?

Dad?

Adam, listen.

Let me take you home.

You go home!

You go home. I’m not going.

ADAM: Where are they?

Where are they?

(BANGING ON DOOR)

Mum?

Adam, stop it.

Dad?

(EERIE MUSIC PLAYING)

ADAM: Can you see them?

Let me in.

Please.

Please let me in.

Please let me in.

(GLASS SHATTERING)

DAD: He has to stop now.

He has to get on with his life.

He can’t keep coming here.

We’re not allowing him to get on with his life.

MUM: I think we are helping him.

DAD: No, we’re not. It’s not normal.

It’s not…

Why didn’t you let us in?

Where is he? Is he here? Is Harry here?

MUM: No.

We did see him, though.

But I wanted you to meet him.

I know, but I don’t think this works like that.

Looked like a handsome fellow, though.

Is he your special friend?

Do you mean my boyfriend?

Is he my boyfriend? You can say it.

Okay. Well, is he your boyfriend?

Um… Uh, I don’t know.

Are you in love with him?

(ADAM CHUCKLES)

Why is that so strange?

I don’t know, I’ve never been in love before, so…

Not really.

So, this…

I don’t know if this is it.

MUM: Sweetheart.

Well,

he certainly seems to care about you a whole heap,

in my not so humble opinion.

Do you think you’d like to be in love with him?

Yeah?

(SOFT MUSIC PLAYING)

Son, I think we…

No.

Don’t say it.

Please don’t say it.

No, we have to.

We have to.

Um…

Me and your mum,

we think that it’s best you don’t come visit us anymore.

All right.

You’re just gonna keep coming and coming, I know you are.

And we can see what this is doing to you.

It’s not doing anything to me.

Yes, it is.

It won’t let you move on.

Okay, well, I’ll come less.

I’ll come once a year. I’ll come at Christmas.

Come on, lad, we…

You have to have known

that this wasn’t gonna last forever.

I’m not asking for it to last forever.

I’m just…

It hasn’t been long enough.

Hasn’t been close to long enough.

I know, but it never could be, could it?

Hey, listen.

I’ve got an idea.

How’s about…

How’s about we go to your favorite place

in the whole bloody world, huh?

I’m sure it’s still open.

It’s the next best thing to Disneyland.

It’s fucking cheaper too.

(ADAM LAUGHING)

What do you think?

(ADAM SIGHS)

(ENGINE WHIRRING)

(IF I COULD SEE THE WORLD (THROUGH THE EYES OF A CHILD) PLAYING)

♪ WOMAN: (SINGING) If ♪ ♪ I could see the world. ♪

♪ Through the eyes of a child. ♪

♪ What a wonderful world. ♪

♪ This would be. ♪

♪ There’d be no trouble… ♪

ADAM: Uh, can I get the “family special”, please?

SERVER: That’s a lot of food.

That’s okay.

Not really very hungry.

No, me neither.

No.

Hey, I wanna ask you something.

God, no, don’t ask.

No, no, I’m gonna ask him.

Was it quick?

Oh, Jesus.

I told you not to ask.

You’re the… You wanna know.

Yeah, but what if it was slow and horribly painful?

Yeah, but what difference does it make?

It makes a big difference.

ADAM: It was quick.

Was it?

ADAM: Yeah.

For both of us?

Mmm-hmm.

MUM: No, you don’t seem sure.

Don’t be fibbing now.

It was quick.

It was really quick.

Well, okay.

Yeah, yeah.

Yeah, but that’s a relief, isn’t it? Of sorts.

It’s been playing on my mind, that has.

What do you think we should say

to each other? (CHUCKLES)

Not sure I have much wisdom to share.

I don’t know, maybe, Adam being older,

should be sharing some with us.

Maybe we shouldn’t say anything.

Maybe.

Although, I will say that getting

to know you has made us very proud, son.

I haven’t done anything to be proud of.

I’ve just muddled through.

No, but you got through.

Some tough times, I’m sure,

and you’re still here.

That’s what we’re proud of.

Yeah.

Dad?

DAD: Hmm?

Stay. Stay. Stay a bit longer.

DAD: No, I don’t think so, son.

MUM: Love you, darling.

You do?

Sometimes, I wasn’t so sure.

Whatever problems we had,

I’m glad we got to be together at the end.

Me too.

Now, I…

I know I was never good at saying it.

I just couldn’t get the words out.

I do love you very much.

Somehow, even more, now that I know you.

It’s important that you believe me.

I do.

(VOICE BREAKS) And I love you very much.

Dad?

(PATTING ON HAND)

Dad, did… Dad, did you hear that?

MUM: (SOBS) Oh, Adam, are you there?

I can’t see you. Why can’t I see you?

I’m here, Mum.

MUM: Oh, there you are.

I can feel you.

Skin’s lovely and warm.

Now, you listen.

You promise me

that you’re gonna try with this Harry boy.

Yeah.

I’d have liked him. I know it.

He might need a bit of taking care of, mind you.

He’s got such a sad face.

Do you hear me?

Yeah.

Yeah, I hear you.

That’s good.

I hope you make each other a bit happier.

Such a kind and gentle boy.

SERVER: Enjoy.

Thank you.

(ADAM EXHALES)

(SOMBER MUSIC PLAYING)

(BEEPS)

(TV STATIC BUZZING)

(BUZZING STOPS)

(DRIPPING)

Harry?

(OMINOUS MUSIC PLAYING)

(COUGHING)

(DOOR RATTLES, OPENS)

What are you doing down here?

I came to find you.

Why are you here?

I… I said goodbye to them, so I came to see you.

(HARRY EXHALES)

(HARRY GROANS)

It’s okay.

HARRY: It’s not okay, though,

is it?

I was so scared that night. I just needed to not be alone.

I know.

I’m sorry.

I was too scared

to let you in.

I’m in there, aren’t I?

Let’s just go upstairs.

No, no, no.

I just need you to tell me, okay?

Because I can smell it. I can

taste it in my throat.

(EXHALES)

How come no one found me?

Where was my mum and my dad?

I found you…

(VOICE BREAKS) I know,

but I… Adam, I don’t want you

to see me like that in there. It’s…

You’re not in there. You’re not in there.

You’re not in there.

You’re here.

You’re here.

You’re here.

With me.

Let’s just go upstairs.

(HARRY CHUCKLES)

I saw her, you know.

Your mum.

Your dad, too, at the house.

They saw you, too.

They did?

Mmm-hmm.

My dad says you’re a handsome fellow.

(HARRY CHUCKLING)

Hmm.

ADAM: They’d have loved you.

They both would.

That’s good.

Did you get to say what you wanted to say?

I don’t know, but I got to be with them.

HARRY: It’s good that you were all together.

Yeah.

I’m scared.

I know.

But I’m here with you.

HARRY: Don’t let this get tangled up again.

Okay, come on.

Okay.

(GRUNTING)

(EXHALES)

It’s so quiet.

Never could stand how quiet this place was.

Will you put a record on?

What would you like?

You choose.

(THE POWER OF LOVE PLAYING)

“I’ll protect you from the hooded claw.”

“Keep the vampires from your door.”

♪ MAN: (SINGING) Ay, ay, ay, ay. ♪

♪ Feels like fire. ♪

♪ I’m so in love with you. ♪

♪ Dreams are like angels. ♪

♪ They keep bad at bay, bad at bay. ♪

♪ Love is the light. ♪

♪ Scaring darkness away, yeah. ♪

♪ I’m so in love with you. ♪

♪ Purge the soul. ♪

♪ Make love your goal. ♪

♪ The power of love. ♪

♪ A force from above. ♪

♪ Cleaning my soul. ♪

♪ Flame on, burn desire. ♪

♪ Love with tongues of fire. ♪

♪ Purge the soul. ♪

♪ Make love your goal. ♪

♪ I’ll protect you from the hooded claw. ♪

♪ Keep the vampires from your door. ♪

♪ When the chips are down I’ll be around. ♪

♪ With my undying, ♪ ♪ death-defying love for you. ♪

♪ Envy will hurt itself. ♪

♪ Let yourself be beautiful. ♪

♪ Sparkling love, flowers ♪ ♪ And pearls and pretty girls. ♪

♪ Love is like an energy. ♪

♪ Rushin’ an’ rushin’ inside of me, eh. ♪

♪ The power of love. ♪

♪ A force from above. ♪

♪ Cleaning my soul. ♪

♪ Flame on, burn desire. ♪

♪ Love with tongues of fire. ♪

♪ Purge the soul. ♪

♪ Make love your goal. ♪

♪ This time we go sublime. ♪

♪ Lovers entwine, divine, divine. ♪

♪ Love is danger, love is pleasure. ♪

♪ Love is pure, the only treasure. ♪

♪ I’m so in love with you Purge the soul. ♪

♪ Make love your goal. ♪

♪ The power of love. ♪

♪ A force from above. ♪

♪ Cleaning my soul. ♪

♪ The power of love. ♪

♪ A force from above. ♪

♪ A sky-scraping dove. ♪

♪ Flame on, burn desire. ♪

♪ Love with tongues of fire. ♪

♪ Purge the soul. ♪

♪ Make love your goal. ♪

♪ I’ll protect you from the hooded claw. ♪

♪ Keep the vampires from your door ♪

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