Latest Ouija: For the Record script

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This is the latest draft of my film's script, written by Alyssa Kurtzman

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Latest Ouija: For the Record script

  1. 1. For The Record By Alyssa Kurtzman Based on Ouija: For The Record by D. L. Cain
  2. 2. OVER BLACK: A DRONING BUZZ AND A QUIET WHOOSHING NOISE. TITLE CARD - "1968 - Avondale, Arizona. Based on True Events" FADE IN: FLASHBACK: INT. GOODWILL - DAY The buzz comes from florescent lights overhead, and the whoosh from a box AC in a musty-looking Goodwill store. Completely oblivious to the world, DIANA CAIN, 13 and her sister TRICIA, 14, hug their arms to their chests and face the box AC, which has faded colored streamers tied to the vents. Diana is bookish, with curly poodle hair (like her sister’s) and wears shabby, too-short hand-me-downs. She takes off her rubber sandals to feel the coolness of the linoleum tiles. The girls’ mother, MARY, 45, browses racks of dresses brightly. She takes one out. In her strong Southern accent: MARY Ugh, this one is perfectly hideous. Diana wanders off to look at a shelf, as Mary turns back to the rack and pulls out a red dress. She examines it, very interested. Mary drapes the dress over her arm and walks to Diana, who’s been examining a thin cardboard box. MARY (CONT’D) Well, I’ll be! It’s a Ouija board. You ever seen one of these? The girls shake their heads. Mary is excited. MARY (CONT’D) Good find, Di! Diana looks exceeding proud of herself. TRICIA Is it a game? MARY Yep, kinda like a gypsy. It can tell the future - but you gotta be careful with it. (CONTINUED)
  3. 3. CONTINUED: 2. She pulls it off the shelf and blows the dust off. MARY What the hell, it’ll give you kids something to do this summer. EXT. TRAILER - DAY The outside of the Cain house-- dingy and unadorned. INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY From a perspective underneath, three faces lean in overhead, reading something. We see that they’re in a cramped, sparsely-adorned living room. Sitting on the floor, their fingers on a tear-shaped indicator over a Ouija board, are Tricia and Mary. Kneeling behind them is Diana, who is scrawling on a notepad as she reads. Diana reads off the notepad. DIANA "Nixon." (to Mary) Who’s he? MARY (to Ouija) No sir. Bobbie Kennedy’s going to win, everyone knows that. The indicator moves to "No." TRICIA (to Ouija) Why? Mary turns to the board brightly, ignoring the question. MARY Ouija, are we gonna have lots of riches? With one hand, Mary puts a hand to a large crucifix necklace around her neck. The indicator, with Tricia and Mary’s (other) fingers still on it, moves to "Yes." Mary clasps her hands together gleefully as Diana squeals. A smoking figure moves into the doorway of the living room: it is patriarch LEVOY CAIN, 42, who takes a step in to watch. (CONTINUED)
  4. 4. CONTINUED: 3. DIANA (to Mary) Riches? Like Aunt Edith? Levoy scoffs. Like Mary, he has a pronounced Southern drawl. LEVOY Diana, just because your mother’s sister has a washing machine does not make her rich. Mary waves her hand at him disapprovingly. MARY Hush, Levoy, we’re just playing a game; no need for sourness. She turns to the girls, forcing a smile. MARY (CONT’D) So, riches for us, huh? Well, praise the Lord Jesus! Hey Ouija, what kind of riches? Jewelry? Or-- TRICIA (interrupting) I don’t think this is the point of the board. Mary clearly disapproves of Tricia’s disrespect. MARY Patricia Faith! DIANA (to Tricia) It told us to ask it questions. LEVOY Girls, stop sitting on your spoiled behinds and do some work around the house for a change. MARY Are you undermining me? As she speaks, the indicator moves: DIANA "Mary is special. Meant for greater things." Mary seems happily startled. Levoy grunts. (CONTINUED)
  5. 5. CONTINUED: 4. Indicator moves as he goes outside. DIANA "Watch for blood." The sound of Levoy slipping and falling can be heard from outside the screen door. Diana and Tricia jump. DIANA What was that? LEVOY (O.S.) Dammit! Goddamn neighbor’s dog left a dead rat outside the door. Mary glares at Tricia. MARY Maybe if you didn’t feed him every time comes over whining! Beat. The three slowly turn to the board in wonder. DIANA But how did it-- MARY Ouija, is that what we should call you? Ouija? Who are you really? Who do you speak for? The indicator moves. Diana reads, confused: DIANA "The Holy Prophet Elijah." They watch the indicator move suddenly to "Goodbye." EXT. TRAILER - DAY A few days later. Inside, holding her notepad in one hand, Diana sips a tall glass of iced tea. Looking out the window, she watches Levoy fixing the porch, cigarette flopping from his mouth. INT. BEDROOM - DAY Diana walks in on Tricia sitting on their bed, playing with the Ouija. She seems to be looking away from the board, moving her fingers, and then checking, as if to see if she’s landed the indicator on the right letter. She notices Diana. (CONTINUED)
  6. 6. CONTINUED: 5. TRICIA (furiously) What?? DIANA Mom says we have to get out of our church clothes. Diana looks at Tricia. DIANA (CONT’D) I thought we weren’t supposed to take that out of the living room-- TRICIA Just shut up, okay? I’m older than you; I can do what I want. DIANA (viciously) What are you-- practicing? Tricia gets up and knocks Diana as she strides out. Beat. Diana examines the board still on the bed. She looks around nervously, then sits next to it, resting her finger on the indicator. Nothing. She screws her eyes up tight, and (clearly) pushes the indicator on her own. She opens her eyes, dejected. She hears shuffling down the hall and in a snap folds up Ouija. INT. LIVING ROOM - CONTINUOUS The living room is messier than it was before. Clothes are draped around the furniture. Levoy is there watching TV. Mary calls out: MARY Girls! Come on, let’s take out Ouija! I’ve got a question to ask it. LEVOY (without turning from the TV) Do you mind doin’ that somewhere else? Diana scurries in with the board as they bicker. (CONTINUED)
  7. 7. CONTINUED: 6. MARY No other place with good enough light-- now if you’d put up the fixtures in the hall like I asked-- Tricia walks out of the kitchen as Diana cautiously moves to the shelf where Ouija is normally kept. DIANA I got it! She sits and kneels by it as Tricia eyes her, not saying anything. the open Ouija board waiting. Diana pulls out the notepad and pencil from her back pocket. Mary walks over and sits between them. She turns to Tricia. MARY Ready? Tricia nods happily, and the two put their fingers on the indicator. MARY Ouija? Er-- Elijah? No-- Ouija? Mary’s flustered. She edges closer and goes on: MARY Is this heat spell gonna end soon? I gotta know if I can start buying some proper cotton dresses. Indicator moves as Levoy grunts to himself: LEVOY That’s where all my money’s going-- to dresses. He turns off the TV, having given up, and heads down the hall. Diana has trouble pronouncing what she has written: DIANA "Imal...a...chai [’ch’ pronounced like in ’cheese’] 4 5 6?" She cocks her head, confused. TRICIA You sure you wrote that down right? DIANA (snapping) I wrote what it spelled! Is that another language, Mama? (CONTINUED)
  8. 8. CONTINUED: 7. Mary has been staring at the Ouija board, frowning. MARY Diana, get the Bible. Diana runs out and comes back with the Bible. She hands it to Mary, who flips through it rapidly. Tricia’s and Diana’s expressions turn slightly fearful as she reads: MARY I Malachi 4, 5, 6... here we go... "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet, and he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse." TRICIA A curse? Indicator moves. Diana notices that despite Tricia’s obvious distraction (she’s not even looking), it glides very easily. DIANA "You will leave soon. To build a temple for me." MARY (in a near whisper) Where, Elijah? Indicator moves. DIANA "Levoy, stop smoking." Indicator then moves to "Goodbye." Diana gapes at the board, then at Mary and Tricia, who share looks of awe. EXT. TRAILER - LATER In near-darkness, Levoy finishes smoking a cigarette. He flicks it away from the front door, and ambles inside.
  9. 9. 8. INT. BEDROOM - EVENING On their bed, Diana flips through a magazine with Davy Jones on the cover, dabbing her face with a cool rag from a bowl on the nightstand, while Tricia combs her hair carefully. Diana hears her mother talking and peers through a crack to see: INT. KITCHEN - DAY Mary leans against the counter, talking on the phone. She’s wearing the red dress she found in Goodwill, and is swirling a full whiskey glass with ice. MARY (into phone) We’re just stayin’ in most days, trying to-- Mary listens to something, frowning slightly. Her conversation turns argumentative. MARY (CONT’D) Well, Lord have mercy, Edith, don’t hold such superstitions, it’s just a board game. ... Well-- why don’t you mind your house and I’ll mind mine! She slams the phone down and leaves the kitchen purposefully. INT. BEDROOM - CONTINUOUS Diana sees her mother storming toward their room and quickly covers her face with the magazine, terrified. The door flies open, and Diana looks on as Mary storms in straight to Tricia and slaps her, furious. MARY Don’t you ever go telling my sister what’s going on in my house. You got that? It ain’t none of her business. Tricia’s look of shock hardens as she sets her jaw and rubs her cheek. Diana’s eyes widen as she peeks out from above the magazine. (CONTINUED)
  10. 10. CONTINUED: 9. TRICIA Yea. I got it. Mary turns, snarling, to Diana, who quickly hides back behind the magazine. Mary stamps out, slamming the door. Quickly, Diana rushes to Tricia, who half-heartedly pushes her away at first. Diana reaches for the basin on the nightstand and gives the rag to Tricia to dab on her cheek. INT. LIVING ROOM - LATER The family sits on the couch and sofa chairs in front of the TV, watching and eating in silence. Mary has put on some lipstick and blush, and still has her glass of whiskey. The family eats glumly in silence. Levoy takes a match and lights a cigarette for himself. MARY Levoy? Please? Levoy groans to himself and puts it out on his dinner plate. Mary looks tense-- Diana tries to put her at ease. DIANA You look really pretty tonight, Mama. MARY Thank you, baby. DIANA Doesn’t she look pretty, Daddy? Levoy just grunts, not looking up. Mary looks distant. Levoy notices that Tricia is stabbing her peas especially viciously. Like his wife, he has a pronounced drawl. LEVOY What’s gotten into you, sister? Levoy looks between the two of them and grunts. LEVOY (CONT’D) This got something to do with that goddamn board? Would do better to burn the damn thing. Mary shakes a finger at him wildly. (CONTINUED)
  11. 11. CONTINUED: 10. MARY You will do no such thing, Levoy! As she scolds, she knocks over Diana’s glass. Diana jumps. DIANA (quickly) It’s okay, Mama. MARY (CONT’D) Oh! Oh, oh, baby, I’m so sorry-- let Mama just-- Levoy stands up, throws his napkin down and leaves. Mary scowls after him. Diana tries to console her mother and sop up the liquid. INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY Tricia and Diana watch TV on the couch, Diana idly thumbing through her notepad. Mary, looking far more unkempt than usual, marches in, holding a glass of amber liquid and the Ouija board under her arm. She turns off the TV abruptly. TRICIA Hey! MARY C’mon, we’re gonna talk to Ouija. DIANA But we’re watching Dick Van Dyke! Ignoring her, Mary sits on the floor with the board and grabs Tricia to sit with her, but Tricia pulls away. TRICIA Can’t we just watch TV, Mama? I’m tired of playing with Ouija. Diana puts aside the notepad and, wide-eyed, watches Mary glare at Tricia. Her expression is wild. MARY Don’t you understand, Patricia Faith? We’re not playing anything. She yanks Tricia’s forefinger roughly and puts it onto the indicator, then puts her own finger on as well, as Diana grabs the notepad from next to her, ready to write. Tricia and Mary each take a deep breath. Indicator moves: (CONTINUED)
  12. 12. CONTINUED: 11. DIANA "Diana, get the globe." Realizing what she read aloud, Diana opens her mouth to protest, but thinks better of it. She gets up, grabs the globe from the end table, and brings it down to the floor in a huff. Indicator moves. DIANA (CONT’D) "Spin and stop with your finger." She spins it, hard, and jabs it with her finger. TRICIA What does it say? DIANA Afghanistan. Indicator moves, as Diana jumps to her notepad to write. DIANA (CONT’D) "You will go there." MARY On a trip? Indicator moves to NO. Beat. DIANA ... To live? Indicator moves to YES. Mary thinks for a second. MARY Is that where we’re supposed to build your temple? Indicator moves to YES. Mary fingers a cracked leg on the coffee table, which is held together by tape. MARY (CONT’D) (quietly) Ouija, where am I going to find that kind of money? Indicator moves: DIANA "You are in God’s hands." Mary nods slowly, as Tricia stares at the board, transfixed. (CONTINUED)
  13. 13. CONTINUED: 12. MARY Ouija, why-- why do you ask this of me? Why this family? Indicator moves: DIANA "You are special, Mary." Mary picks her head up, heartened, as indicator moves: DIANA (CONT’D) "Take your children and go there." Mary scoffs, taking a sip from her glass. She speaks to the board, almost conversationally: MARY I see Levoy is being left out of these plans. Before anyone can respond, indicator moves: DIANA "He is a non-believer." Diana’s eyes widen at the board. She is stunned. Mary simply nods her head, completely dutiful. INT. LIVING ROOM - LATER Levoy sits in the sofa chair, watching a flurry of activity around him: Tricia and Diana bustle around with suitcases, clothes and personal items. They both head outside. Mary walks in, lugging a giant suitcase. LEVOY What the hell are you doing, Mary? Mary throws down the suitcase and walks up to Levoy. Her hair is wild, and her face is sweaty. She leans down and juts her face a few inches from Levoy’s, snarling. MARY (viciously) We’re leaving, Levoy. LEVOY You’re drunk. She tears herself away and resumes packing furiously. (CONTINUED)
  14. 14. CONTINUED: 13. LEVOY Where do you think y’all are going, then? MARY We’re staying with my sister until I get our passports and our reservations made. Then we’re moving to Afghanistan, all three of us. Ouija will look after us. The girls come back in to grab more items. They stop and stare at their parents fighting. LEVOY C’mon, Mary, don’t be an idiot. MARY Do not speak to me that way! I am a servant of God! LEVOY Says who? That goddamn piece of cardboard? That what you’re gonna be yelling when it tells you to drive off a cliff? Again, Mary approaches him quickly. She leans in, her hands gripping each of the arms on Levoy’s chair. MARY Ouija speaks to us because we were chosen. Because I am special. Levoy laughs, right in her face. Mary is clearly broken by his scoff. She stands upright and walks to the girls, as Levoy, looking almost remorseful, turns his chair away. DIANA (in a near-whisper) These are the last ones, Mama. Mary nods, then grabs a piece of luggage and scoots Tricia out. The slam of the screen door as they leave seems to jolt Diana back to life, still standing by the kitchen, staring at her father. She picks up Ouija board from the end table. Diana watches Levoy (from behind) light a cigarette. Beat. LEVOY (not turning to face her) Be safe, now. (CONTINUED)
  15. 15. CONTINUED: 14. Very slowly, Diana takes a step, and then another, never taking her eyes off the back of her father’s chair. She grabs the handle to the door and exits. FADE OUT.

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