The Mask That Hides The heart

The Mask That Hides The heart

Status: In Progress

Genre: Science Fiction

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Status: In Progress

Genre: Science Fiction

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Summary

This is a redoing of my original short story, now converted into a 10 minute/page script. This was also developed as my script writing assignment project
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Summary

This is a redoing of my original short story, now converted into a 10 minute/page script. This was also developed as my script writing assignment project

Content

Submitted: March 15, 2017

A A A | A A A

Content

Submitted: March 15, 2017

A A A

A A A


THE MASK THAT HIDES THE HEART

written by

Stuart Micheal Harley

FADE IN: OVERCAST VIEW OF A DISMAL LOOKING CITY


EXT. A CROWDED STREET WITHIN THE INNER CITY, DAY

A teenage girl named ALICE is standing isolated from the crowd, all the citizens are wearing pure white masks covering all facial features except from their eyes. 

                                ALICE (V.O.)
From the day my mother gave birth to me, I have lived like everyone else I have ever known. Broken.

Alice (also wearing a mask) begins walking among the crowd of people. She passes by many shops and other idle citizens communicating through hand gestures.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
From birth our faces are cut off from the world never to feel the warm sun upon our cheeks. We are given masks that were made to project the wearer’s inner self to the world. Most people hide their true selves but the world I live in is something out of a horror story that we are forced to endure.

She stops and observes a passing mother pushing a pram, the infant is also wearing a mask and can be heard faintly crying.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
I could hear the child's cry for help echoing beneath the facial cage, begging to be released, crying for its mother to save them from this torment. But no one would be coming to their rescue, soon their rebellious cry would become a solemn silence and will only ever be heard if ever granted such a reward.

She then notices a masked shopkeeper trying to draw in customers, standing on the door step of his shop he makes various hand gestures while pointing to a sign reading 'Sale'.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
We never knew of the vocal tools we possessed, like infant children all we could do was flail our limbs about in communication. Though we used written language, a scribble could only express so much. Any noise we ever created from our throats would simply fall on deaf ears.

She continues her journey through the crowded streets glancing over the towering buildings around her.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
In the city where I grew up, the buildings seemed like trees out of a forest and we are the monsters said to dwell within. 

A ambulance is parked outside a nearby building and a concealed adult body is wheeled inside out of view.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Some monsters weren't strong enough to survive in this world, driven to insanity and depression by their own mistakes, some chose to end their own suffering. Those who were born long before this nightmare began were few in number, they were the elders of our generation but many succumbed to the ever beckoning claws of the blissful isolation in death.

She looks among the many people passing all around her in the streets, consisting of men, women and children. 

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
There still existed those among us who bared upon them mistakes of their past and rebellious natures, for their crimes they were forever haunted by their past, isolating them from society. They slipped by one another hiding in the shadows keeping their faces to the floor, some of them didn't dare look into a mirror or even at one another, because they were afraid of what they may see.

She continues walking through the city passing various built structures and urban life. 

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Why were we given these plastic faces? No one knows or even remembers, by now this has become our way of life.


INT. ALICE'S CHILDHOOD BEDROOM - NIGHT

Alice age six is sitting on her bed being cradled by her Mother while she runs her finger across the words of a children's story book called 'The Ugly Duckling'.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
My Mother would always read me stories of how our beauty was hidden away under our fake faces, that true beauty does exist within us all but that we have forgotten it.


EXT. CITY STREETS - DAY

She continues walking and notices a teenage boy and girl walking side by side before separating and walking opposite directions, the boy takes a look back before he continues walking.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
We all longed to feel the touch of a loved one’s lips, to feel the cold rain drip down our cheeks like rivers. But yet we stood idle, afraid to look one another in the eye.

She looks up into the sky at the sun, she then returns her gaze to the faceless people around her. 

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
I longed to see true beauty within this world but yet I found myself surrounded by mannequins that had forgotten their humanity.

She takes notice of a man and a woman walking with their child.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
How could someone feel anything for another if was no face? No individuality?

She takes special notice of the child as they pass. 

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The child's mask was plain and white with innocence, resembling my own. But a question lingered in the back of my mind, how long would the child be able to retain such an innocent nature? How long would it be till we all give in to temptation?

Alice passes a large building marked 'Reproduction Facility' and outside are two separate long lines composed of the opposite gender.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
We were paired with our companions like animals made to breed, giving birth to the offspring that would either work to supply our leaders with comfort and power or become a human resource supplying the world with new born ghosts to join us in our everlasting purgatory.


INT. ALICE'S HOME - DAY

The living room is bare and has very few items, consisting of simple furniture and no art or pictures. Alice arrives home and her Grandmother has come to visit, her Mother and Grandmother are looking at old photographs.

                                ALICE (V.O.)
When i returned to my home of solitude i was greeted by my Mother and Grandmother. Within their hands they held strange objects, immediately clutched by curiosity i sat and observed the foreign items.

Alice sits and looks over old Photographs from her Grandmother's time.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The objects were frozen moments in time encased in a plastic sheath known as photographs. Each one depicted a different memory in time, but one specific photo stuck out to me. 

Alice grips hold of a specific photograph depicting Halloween.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Within the photo stood a row of children all wearing masks, each one depicting a horrific manifestation. And stood next to them was a tall woman, but she did not wear a mask, her face was free but yet her lips were creased and stretched. Struck by confusion i questioned my Grandmother for answers.

Alice then points the photo in her Grandmothers direction and points a finger at the tall woman in the photo and then too the children.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
My Grandmother claimed it was a day of celebration called 'Halloween' and that the tall woman was her mother, her expression was called smiling. In their time such an event of wearing masks was a day of fun, but we lived this day on loop and it had become all too real.

Alice then continues to rummage through the rest of the photographs, the photo's consist of birthday celebrations, weddings, holiday events and other special occasions.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
As i dug deeper through the memories i uncovered more and more questions about the past, each photo depicted foreign items and facial expressions within them. But one thing stuck out in my mind, these people's faces were bare and almost enticing, but i was unsure why i felt this way. Was this what my mother told me about in my child hood story? Is this the kind of beauty we kept locked away? I was urged to find out what lay beneath our masks and why we concealed it.

Alice then stands up and makes for the front door.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The old photographs spun my thoughts and questions like a hurricane in my brain, i had to know if the answers were out there somewhere.


EXT. CITY STREETS MOMENTS LATER - DAY

Alice begins running through the crowded streets of faceless citizens as rain pours down, soaking everything it touches.

                                ALICE (V.O.)
I slowly forced my legs to move through the forest of empty shells around me as the sky started to cry. I then found myself picking up speed as the puddles of tears formed on the ground around me.

She turns down an empty alleyway, cluttered with old house building supplies and tools.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
I became consumed by my goal, to find where our humanity hid, to find where our beauty lied, to find the key to our cages.

She trips and falls head first to the ground and is knocked unconscious as the rain soaks through her clothes.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
All of a sudden my foot was misplaced and I came down like a tree to the ground, the last sound I heard was almost like celery breaking in half before blacking out.

FADE UP - She then awakes after some time has passed and finds herself all alone, laying in a puddle of rain.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
As I slowly came to, I looked around to see if any ghost would come to my aid, but there was no one in sight.

She notices a broken white object laying on the ground nearby.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
I looked over my body for scrapes and scratches, but found none to my surprise. I then noticed a large white object almost like an egg shell gathering a pool of tears in its cupped shape. Confused i looked around to figure out where it may have originated from.

She then see's her facial reflection in a sheet of glass.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Suddenly I jumped back in shock as a girl was staring me back in the face. But she was not wearing a mask, she was beautiful.

She becomes mesmerized by the reflective image.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Blood Red strands of hair hanged over her forehead and her eyebrows were thin and straight. Her eyes were as blue as the ocean itself and her cheeks were pale but smooth, this girl was me.

She then comes to the realization of her true face and the rain slows. 

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The tears of the sky continued to fall but slower, they splashed against my cheeks sending a cold shiver through my body. Exploring my new found face I felt the small amount of warmth syncing back into my fingertips. From looking in this reflection I had finally realised what I longed to see, true beauty and individuality.

She finds her confidence and the rains stops.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
With my new found confidence dwelling within me I looked to the sky to see the grey clouds of misery fade away opening up to the brightest sun I had ever witnessed. I believed i could help revitalize our humanity and free us from this nightmare at last.

She stands in the center of the city and the citizens gather around her.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
One by one the ghosts slowly gathered around me and gazed in awe at what they had forgotten existed, beauty and individuality.

She looks across the crowd and sees various images on their masks.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Upon their plastic faces were images of cursed, deranged, sad and depressed individuals. But now their humanity and hope could be restored.

She helps pull and break the masks off each person's face, inspiring others to do the same.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
Each of them was freed of the curse, their  faces alight with overwhelming joy and happiness. At last we were happy, we were free, and we were beautiful once more.

The citizens cheer with joy, and among the crowd is Alice's mother. Now truly seeing each other for the first time, Alice falls into her mothers arms as they hug.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The forest that I once called home filled with ghosts, was no more. Our eyes were opened to a city of opportunity and freedom, together we could stride towards a bright future as one.

The sun begins to shine brightly in the sky over the city.

                                ALICE (V.O.) (CONT'D)
The sun shined bright like fire and the city was filled with life, this was the end of our nightmare.


INT. ALICE'S HOME - DAY

Alice aged eighty five is sitting on the edge of her seven year old Granddaughter's bed. The room is pink and the Granddaughter is tucked in cuddling a toy.

                                ALICE
                And that's the story, now time for bed Jessica.

Alice leans in and kisses Jessica on the forehead.

                                JESSICA
                Okay grandma, love you.

Alice flattens and straightens the bed quilt.

                                ALICE
                I love you too dear.

Jessica then sits back up in bed.

                                JESSICA
                Grandma, Why did you wear masks?

                                ALICE
I'm not sure dear, it was so long ago that old grandma can't even remember.

Alice points a finger and lightly taps jessica.

                                ALICE (CONT'D)
But i do know that you will never have to grow up in such a way, your bright smile keeps everyone around you happy and don't you ever hide it away, OK?

Jessica nods slightly with a smile.

                                JESSICA
                I won't Grandma, goodnight.

Alice settles jessica back down and tucks her in bed.

                                ALICE
                Goodnight dear, sweet dreams.

She then stands up and switches off the light, closing the bedroom door as she leaves.


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