Rage

Darkness.In the darkness we hear-

CHARLIE DECKER:(V.O.)Sanity.You can go your whole life telling yourself that life is logical,life is prosaic, life is sane.Above all,sane.And I think it is.I've had alot of time to think about that.And what I keep coming back to is Mrs. Underwood's dying declaration:So you understand that when we increase the number of variables, the axioms themselves never change.I really believe that.

OPEN ON:

INT. A HIGH SCHOOL-A HALLWAY-CHARLIE DECKER,17,IS WALKING DOWN THE EMPTY HALL ALONE.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)I think,therefore I am.There are hairs on my face,therefore I shave.My wife and child have been critically injured in a car crash,therefore I pray.It's all logical,it's all sane.We live in the best possible of all worlds,so hand me a Kent for my left,a Bud for my right,turn on Starsky And Hutch,and listen to that soft, harmonious note that is the universe turning smoothly on it's celestial gyros.Logic and sanity.Like Coca-Cola, it's the real thing.

A girl walks past Charlie carrying her school books. She's timid,considered a nerd in school,with large, thick glasses and pimples.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)But as Warner Brothers,John D. MacDonald, and Long Island Dragway know so well,there's a Mr. Hyde for every happy Dr. Jekyll,a dark face on the other side of the mirror.The brain behind that face never heard of razors,prayers,or the logic of the universe.You turn the mirror sideways and see your face reflected with a sinister left-hand twist,half mad and half sane.The astronomers call that line between light and dark the terminator.

Charlie glances back at the girl as she continues down the hall.She looks like a Miss America contestant from behind.Charlie smiles and continues down the hall.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)The other side says that the universe has all the logic of a little kid in a Halloween cowboy suit with his guts and trick-or-treat candy spread all over a mile of Interstate 95.This is the logic of napalm, paranoia,suitcase bombs carried by happy Arabs,random carcinoma.This logic eats itself.It says life is a monkey on a stick,it says life spins as hysterically and erratically as the penny you flick to see who buys lunch.

Charlie reaches his locker and opens it.We watch a montage of him pulling out his school books and ripping them apart,dropping the pieces to the bottom of the locker,onto his gym bag.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)No one looks at that side unless they have to,and I can understand that.You look at it if you hitch a ride with a drunk in a GTO who puts it up to 110 and starts blubbering about how his wife turned him out.You look at it if some guy decides to drive across Indiana shooting kids.You look at it if your sister says,"I'm going down to the store for a minute,big guy." and then gets killed in a stickup.

On the shelf where Charlie's books were is a box of bullets.Charlie grabs the box and puts it in his jeans pocket.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)It's a roulette wheel,but anybody who says the game is rigged is whining.No matter how many numbers there are,the principle of that little white jittering ball never changes.Don't say it's crazy. It's all so cool and sane.

Charlie pulls a gun out of his jacket pocket and puts it in his other jeans pocket.He pulls out a lighter and sets the ripped up books at the bottom of his locker on fire.He then shuts the locker door.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)And all that weirdness isn't just going on outside.It's in you too,right now,growing in the dark like magic mushrooms.Call it the Thing in the Cellar. Call it the Blow Lunch Factor.Call it the Looney Tunes File.I think of it as my private dinosaur,huge,slimy, amd mindless,stumbling around in the stinking swamp of my subconscious,never finding a tarpit big enough to hold it.

A door opens near Charlie and a teenager carrying a bathroom pass comes out of a class room.He sees Charlie standing infront of his locker,smoke coming out of the vents in the locker door.The teen runs down the hall and Charlie watches him.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)But that's me,and I started to tell you about them,those bright college-bound students that, metaphorically speaking,walked down to the store to get milk and ended up in the middle of an armed robbery. I'm a documented case,routine grist for the newspaper mill.A thousand newsboys hawked me on a thousand street corners.I had 50 seconds on Brinkley and a column and a half in Time.And I stand here before you and tell you I'm perfectly sane.I do have one slightly crooked wheel upstairs,but everything else is just ticking along fine,thank you.

Charlie walks down the hall,toward a door.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)So them.How do you understand them?We have to discuss that,don't we?

Charlie reaches the door,and the V.O. ends.We hear from inside the room-

MRS. UNDERWOOD:(O.S.)So you understand....

Charlie opens the door and walks into the class room. Mrs. Underwood is standing at the front of the room behind her desk,a few feet infront of Charlie,teaching.

MRS. UNDERWOOD:(CONT'D)...that when we increase the number of variables,the axioms themselves never change. For ex...

Mrs. Underwood notices Charlie and turns toward him.

MRS. UNDERWOOD:Do you have an office pass,Mr. Decker?

CHARLIE:Yes.

Charlie pulls the gun out and shoots the teacher in the head.

FADE OUT.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)I'm the sane one,I'm the croupier.I'm the guy who spins the ball against the spin of the wheel.The guy who lays his money on odd/even,the girl who lays her money on black/red.What about them?

OPEN AGAIN ON-

A MONTAGE OF SCENES FROM THE MOVIE.

Charlie fires four shots through the class room window.

A girl slaps another one.

A girl in the class screams.

The girl that got slapped falling to the floor on her knees,catching herself with one hand.

Charlie yelling something.

A boy in the class snapping a pencil in half.

Police cars filling the school yard.

Charlie looking out the window at all the police.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)There isn't any division of time to express the marrow of our lives,the time between the explosion of lead from the muzzle and the meat impact,between the impact and the darkness.There's only barren instant replay that shows nothing new.

We see Charlie shooting Mrs. Underwood and her falling to the floor from many different angles.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)I shot her,she fell,and there was an indescribable moment of silence,an infinite duration of time,and we all stepped back,watching the ball go around and around, ticking,bouncing,lighting for an instant,going on,heads and tails,red and black,odd and even.I think that moment ended.I really do.But sometimes,in the dark,I think that hideous random moment is still going on...

FADE OUT.

CHARLIE:(V.O,CONT'D)...that the wheel is even yet in spin,and I dreamed all the rest.

The title appears: RAGE

CHARLIE:(V.O.)What must it be like for a suicide coming down from a high ledge?

The title fades out and this appears:BASED ON THE BOOK BY STEPHEN KING,WRITING AS RICHARD BACHMAN.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)I'm sure it must be a very sane feeling.

The next thing appears:ADAPTED BY CODY HAMMAN.Then that fades out.

CHARLIE:(V.O.)That's probably why they scream all the way down.

COMING SOON

Note:The voice-over in this preview was taken directly from Chapter 10 of Rage.