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  • Writer's pictureAnshuman Arya

ALiBI SCREENPLAY


 

ALiBI

BY ANSHUMAN ARYA [2017]


 

LOGLINE


In "Alibi," a young woman grapples with the absence of her support system, represented by the elusive "alibi." The story promises to delve into themes of independence, fear, and the quest for inner strength.

SYNOPSIS


In "Alibi," we follow the journey of a young woman who is grappling with the absence of her metaphorical "alibi," a symbol of support and guidance in her life. The story explores themes of self-discovery, resilience, and the struggle to find one's voice in a world full of expectations and pressures.


The protagonist, plagued by feelings of inadequacy and self-doubt, confronts her alibi's departure, which forces her to confront her own fears and insecurities. Through a series of introspective moments, she begins to realize that she has the strength and resources within herself to face life's challenges head-on.


As she navigates through her emotions and experiences, the protagonist learns to let go of her reliance on external validation and starts to trust her own instincts. She discovers the power of self-acceptance and the importance of embracing her true identity, flaws, and all.


Ultimately, "Alibi" is a story of empowerment and personal growth, reminding us that our greatest strength lies not in the support of others, but in our ability to believe in ourselves and our capacity to overcome adversity.



 

ACT I


 

INT. BEDROOM - LATE NIGHT


A dark, minimalist bedroom lit only by

the ethereal glow of a smartphone screen.

A GIRL, eyes wide and unfocused, stares at the screen.

A stray lock of her straight brown hair

obscures her face momentarily.

Moonlight streams through an open window,

casting a silver sheen across the carpeted floor

and ushering in a cool night breeze.

The Girl shivers, pulls a purple fleece duvet closer,

tucking the errant strand of hair behind her ear

with one hand while the other

remains clutched around her phone.


A DOOR CREAKS open.

The Girl's head snaps towards the sound,

hair flinging out.

She freezes.

Her secret is out.

Silence hangs heavy; no alibi to speak.


A woman stands at the door, her face etched with concern.


WOMAN

How can this continue?


The girl, sitting on her bed, avoids eye contact.


WOMAN (CONT'D)

You don't need your alibi tonight.

You need to wake up early.

How will you manage?


The girl, uneasy, looks away.

There is no alibi.

She must face this alone.


WOMAN (CONT'D)

(yelling)

You're not scared enough.

Find some anxiety to push you forward.

Don't forget your alibi next time.

Find a better one.



The door slams shut.

The girl, bathed in the bluish light

of her smartphone, frowns.


She dislikes being yelled at.



INT. GIRL'S BEDROOM - NIGHT


(The girl lies on her bed, staring at the ceiling.

Her alibi, a thin wisp of white,

shaped like a human figure, 

floats in and sits down next to her.

She reaches out, but it slips through her fingers.

She closes her eyes, then abruptly

throws off the duvet,

stretching across the bed like a cat,

her long brown hair  falling over the

side of her upper body.

She jumps up, retrieves a half-smoked joint,

lights it, and heads to the bathroom.)


INT. GIRL'S BATHROOM - NIGHT


(In the bathroom, she switches on the floor lamps,

casting a warm glow.

She gazes at herself in the mirror,

the smoke swirling around her.

She examines her features,

the passage of time evident in her reflections.

Her resolve hardens as she locks

eyes with herself,

seeking answers from within.)


INTERNAL DIALOGUE:


GIRL

(whispering to herself)

Is this what I wanted?

To be alone, without my alibi?

But I can't keep living in its shadow,

always seeking its approval.

Maybe it's time to find my own voice,

to be truly free.

But what if I lose myself in the process?

What if my alibi was the

only thing keeping me sane?



INT. LAKESIDE - DAY


We see the girl looking at her reflection,

crouched low over  a few big rocks

holding a pool of clear,

still water,

at one end of the lake. 


She puts a finger in her reflections

eye in  the water,

causing concentric ripples to emerge,

with a gentle breeze,

making the girl's hair and

yellow summer dress dance along. 


She gets up gracefully and waves

to a boy on the beach, who  waves back. 


She starts walking towards him but he

keeps  getting pushed further and further away,

as if in a time  warped tunnel. 


We see despair in her eyes,

her hands passing  through the wisp of her alibi again,

never to reclaim her need to say. 


Her need to say.

Something that her alibi had gifted her  with.

And then.

The gift her alibi had taken away.

Her  beautiful mind, her own, now,

felt no need to say.

Her alibi  got the best of her. 


The war had been won

long before the  battle had begun.




 

ACT II


 


She screams, but there is no sound,

just the hollow of the vacuous and vapid

circumstance her alibi has brought her to.

The silent treatment.

Her eyes close. 


She wakes up on grass with a dog next to her,

a huge golden retriever.

She cries.

She sleeps off hugging the gentle giant.

The little things.

She cares for the little things. 


The girl looks up at the sky,

on which we see a montage of pictures of

Himalayan landscapes,

speeding from fast to slow,

zooming into the last picture of the

girl in which she looks like she is

floating alone in mid-air. 


INT. EDITING SUITE


The picture of her floating in mid-air

is displayed on the screen

she sits in front of.

The room is dark,

except for the light from the screen,

the whirring and buzzing

of electronics in the room. 


She has been slacking again.

These words flash on the dark walls.

Daydreaming.

Laziness.

Nostalgia.

Lethargy.

Procrastination.

Instant gratification. 


Gratification.

Something that causes pleasure;

A reward. A rejection. Another. Another.

Another. Another. Another. Another.

Another. No reward.

No acknowledgement.

No appreciation.

No gratification.


Her eyes close. 


She opens a blank document.

Her headphones plugged in,

she presses play and scene music begins.

She starts typing what we see on the screen. 


VO VISUAL MONTAGE OF HER


"What I'm about is respect.

What I'm about is loyalty.

What I'm about is the truth.

What I'm about is honor.

And yet, after all these big words...

Who am I?

Who is I?

Who are I? 


I belongs.

I escapes.

I doesn't quit.

I quits too easily.

I loves.

I hates.

And me?

Me does think I knows.

But, I am.

I.

Am.

And that's enough. 


My time.

Your time.

Do you remember that time?

And that?

Oh yes!

I remember that one too.

Our time is shared.

For I am you and you are I.

We are all I.

But you and I?

Then you are you.

And I am I."






 


ACT III



 


DREAM SEQUENCE VO INT/EXT NIGHT/DAY MONTAGE + CLOSEUPS


You break me, you berate me, you degrade me, you demotivate me,

you take me for granted.

Granted, I have made mistakes,

but grant me space,

for I am only human.

Just like you, I, and me,

everybody has got to be themselves.

Why do you need to feed the greed

of these insatiable beasts of darkness?

You try to mold and control people who

are your confidants by night and

target practice by day.


The beast that gobbles I,

and spews out liquid fire,

which burns heavy.

The energies shut themselves down

around me

when the beast unleashes her agonizing fury.

I am burning.

My secure towers are burning.


The clocks are turning. 


For I had read somewhere,

in the end,

a toothless dragon must win the battle of the burns.


But when it comes to the war,

I must shield myself from the fire.

Fight through it, long enough, far enough.

Get close, real close.

Wait. Observe. Feel.

Strike when she bares her toothless jaw

and is out of fire. 


Persist.

Provide insight.

At that moment, the damage is done.

She has used her most feared weapon on herself.

Don't play with fire unless you want to get burnt.

She will rise from the ashes, renewed,

revived into the true nature of her deceit. 


Reveling in the ascension to zero state

from the unholy depths of the negative darkness

she once engulfed herself with.

Balance cannot be bought.

It must be brought.


It must be practiced.


It must be taught.


One way or another, it must remain.


"What does not kill me, makes me stronger."


She stops, hits ctrl+S on her keyboard,

and shuts off the screen.

There is a smile on her face,

seen only in the cold blue light of the CPU,

as the black mirror in front of her now shows

her alibi in the reflection.


She turns around.


GIRL

Why can't you just stay?

I have needed you.

Now more than ever.


ALIBI

I have overstayed my welcome.

You need to finish what you started.


GIRL

I can't do it alone.


Her head bends low as she tries to reconcile

with her feelings of love and desire. 


Her need to feel, which she has been feeling less

and less of.

Feelings gone,

while she was flirting with her alibi.


ALIBI

You don't have to.

Now, you must face reality.

Now you must take a stand.

Now you must give yourself.

Now you must get rid of set patterns and establish new ones.

Positive choices.

But, I will have to leave for that to happen.


She looks up at her alibi;

he has never sounded this way before,

so in control,

giving her control.


But after all this time,

he had been leading her on,

this closure felt strange.


GIRL

I don't know if I can?

What if I fail again?

I wouldn't be able to handle it.


ALIBI

Yes, you will.

This too shall pass.

And look around you,

you already have everything you need.

Everyone you need.



 


Saying this, her alibi passes over her shoulder

into the black mirror,

and the screen lights up,

displaying a picture of the girl sitting

with her friends on top of a car

in some breathtakingly beautiful lands.


We see her smile as she gets up off her chair,

goes to the window and pulls the curtains apart.

Fresh, morning light pours into the room,

making everything seem bright and hopeful.


Now, she knows what to do.

And she will learn how.


Her face spells hope.


 




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