[リミット](2010年)

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[amazonjs asin=”B008MTJFFW” locale=”JP” title=”リミット スペシャル・プライス Blu-ray”]FADE IN:

INT. UNKNOWN ROOM – NIGHT

Darkness. Silence. After a long beat, we hear movement,
confined and contained.
We then hear the sound of a man, PAUL CONROY, groaning,
making confused attempts at words. We hear his movement;
short, abrupt shifting, ending almost immediately with the
sound of his body banging against wood.
He screams, though it’s clear from the sound that his mouth
is covered by something.
After attempting to sit up, he immediately bangs his head
against something. It’s terribly warm and his breaths are
labored.
He attempts to move to his left and right, only to find that
he is confined on those sides, as well. He frantically
shifts about, only to discover, by touch, that he is encased
in something.
Something is very wrong, and he doesn’t need to see to know
that.
Finally, we see him, lit by the flame of the Zippo he holds
in his hands, which are bound together in front of him with
rope. A rolled-up, dirty rag is tied tightly around his
head, stretched across his mouth. Dried blood stains his
hair and forehead.

We see that he is lying in an old fashioned, wooden coffin.
Nothing more than a few rotted-out planks of wood nailed
together. Realizing the same, Paul is struck by an
overwhelming, instant panic.
With great difficulty, and while still holding the lit Zippo,
Paul removes the muzzle from his mouth.

PAUL
What…? What is this?
His words become almost unintelligible as he flails about,
though fear is understood in his every utterance.
He screams aloud, but his voice is captured by the coffin
walls.

2.

PAUL
Oh my God! Help me!! Help me!!
He kicks and slams his hands against the top and sides of the
coffin, all to no avail. His violent movements cause small
grains of sand to trickle in through the space between the
sides and top of the coffin, as well as a small gap that
exists between one of the coffin’s broken wooden planks.
Sweat cascades down the side of his neck, dripping from his
dampened brow. The heat inside the extremely close confines
of the coffin is stifling.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Somebody help me! Please!!
Paul continues with his futile efforts to pry off the top of
the coffin. The sides, the top, the bottom — all are too
thoroughly reinforced by the force of what surrounds the
coffin. Sand. It becomes clear to him that he is buried.
He tries his best to calm himself, though he has trouble
catching his breath. It takes him some time, but he
eventually achieves some semblance of calm.
Getting a good look at him for the first time, we see that
Paul is somewhere around 37 years old. Unshaven and
physically unremarkable, he embodies the blue-collar American
everyman.
He coughs. The minimal amount of oxygen in the coffin makes
it hard for him to breathe.
His eyes widen a bit upon seeing an exposed, rusty nail. He
tries desperately to use the nail to cut through the old,
frayed ropes that bind his hands. Doing so is no easy task.
The incredibly tight quarters makes his every action nearly
impossible.
After a lengthy struggle, the rope snaps. Paul quickly frees
his hands. A small victory. Very small.
The heat is unbearable. Paul takes off his button-down
shirt, leaving him in a T-shirt. His body battles against
the walls and the ceiling of the coffin with every move he
makes.
He tosses his button-down shirt down by his feet. His
undershirt is drenched through with sweat.
Still trying to calm himself, but having little success in
doing so, Paul looks around the coffin. His feet, though
only his body-length away, seem miles from him.

3.

He looks at the top of the coffin, and then back at his feet.
With great difficulty, he shifts his body so that his feet
are pressed against the top of the coffin. He attempts to
use his leg strength to push the top off of him, but it
doesn’t move even a millimeter.
After several failed attempts, and with his legs exhausted,
Paul drops his feet from the top of the coffin. He lay for a
moment in silence, followed by an outburst of crying.
Close to his head, on the corner of the floor, we see there’s
another broken plank. A small hole.
He closes his cigarette lighter, extinguishing the flame. In
total darkness, he continues to cry.

PAUL (CONT’D)
What is this?
With his sobbing slowly subsiding, the coffin soon grows
eerily silent.
The sound of Paul’s labored breaths are all we hear, softened
under the blanket of absolute darkness.
After a beat, the silence is interrupted by a subtle buzzing
sound. The muted sight of strange, blueish light flickers in
the coffin, by Paul’s feet. He is extremely startled.
The buzzing continues, as does the minimal splashing of
light. It’s coming from underneath his discarded button-down
shirt, down near his feet.
He lights the Zippo to get a better look.

Pulling the shirt away, he realizes that what he is hearing
and seeing is the vibrating ring and display features of an
older model cell phone.
He frantically reaches for it, though the coffin is far too
small for him to reposition himself so easily.
To his dismay, the phone stops ringing. But, his efforts to
reach it continue. He uses his feet to search for the phone.
After some trouble finding it, he eventually locates it.
Clamping the phone together between his clasped feet, Paul
then painfully angles his body so that he can reach his feet
with his hands and grab it.
He is soon able to reach it. Immediately thereafter, he
flips open the phone and puts the receiver in front of him.

4.

We see that there is a Text Message waiting for Paul on the
phone. However, Paul barely notices.
The time on the phone reads 6:12pm. While the numbers and
display screen icons are familiar to Americans, all the words
are in Arabic.
What he does notices is that the phone barely has one bar of
signal strength. Worse yet, there is only half of the
battery life remaining.
He tries to remember the Safe Number he was given. With the
phone open and ready to be dialed, Paul struggles to recall
the information.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Come on, come on. What was it?

Getting only two digits into dialing the number, he cannot
remember much more and closes the phone.
He wedges the lit Zippo into sand, which is compacted against
a small hole in the wall of the coffin.
Paul reaches into his pants pocket, frantically searching for
something. He hastily removes a prescription pill bottle and
a small, metal flask. Both are not what he was looking for.
He then reaches to his back pocket and removes his wallet.
It’s empty. His license, his credit cards, his cash and,
most importantly at that very moment, a piece of paper with
the Safe Number written on it, are all missing.

PAUL (CONT’D)
No. Where the hell is it? Son of
a…Come on!

He screams aloud again, hoping greatly that someone can hear
him. His frenzied maneuvering puts out the flame of the
Zippo.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Help me! Please! Somebody help
me!
His words barely make it pass the coffin walls.
With the cell phone still in hand, and laboring to reclaim
the breath he just expended, Paul turns to desperation. He
dials the international code of 001, and then dials 911.
A FEMALE 911 OPERATOR answers almost immediately.

5.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
911, please hold.
The Female 911 Operator places Paul on hold.

PAUL
No! Wait!
Paul accidentally bangs the cap of the Zippo against the
coffin wall, putting out the flame.
She quickly returns.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
911. What is your emergency?

PAUL
Hello?

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
911. What’s the problem, sir?
Paul is so incredibly panicked that he has trouble remaining
coherent. After a few sparks, the Zippo is re-lit.

PAUL
I’m buried. You have to help me.
You have to help me, I can’t
breathe…

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR

SIR —

PAUL
I’m buried in a coffin. Please
help me! Send someone to find
me…

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Sir…slow down. What is your
name?

PAUL
Paul. Paul Conroy.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Okay, Mister Conroy. Can you tell
me your location?

PAUL
I don’t know. I’m in a coffin. I
don’t know where. I’m scared.
Please help me.

6.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
You’re in a coffin?

PAUL
Yeah, it’s, like, one of those old,
wooden ones.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Are you at a funeral home?

PAUL
No. I don’t know. No.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
How are calling me right now?

PAUL
What?

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
If you’re buried in a coffin, where
are you calling from?

PAUL
A cell phone. There was an old
cell phone in the coffin.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
You’re calling from your cell
phone?

PAUL
Yes. No. It’s not mine, but yes,
I’m calling from a cell phone.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
There was a cell phone in the
coffin when you climbed in?

PAUL
I didn’t climb in.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
How did you end up in the coffin,
sir?

PAUL
I was put here.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
In the coffin?

PAUL
Yes. Please send help.

7.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
And you’re saying the coffin is
buried?

PAUL
I think so. It’s…it’s hot in
here. I can’t breathe.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Do you know your location, sir?

PAUL
I told you, I don’t know.
Somewhere in Iraq.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Iraq?

PAUL
Yes. I’m a truck driver, an
American. I work for CRT.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Are you a soldier, sir?

PAUL
No. Please, please listen to me.
I’m a truck driver. I work for
CRT. I’m a civilian contractor
working in Iraq. We were attacked
in Baqubah, they…they…

(STARTS CRYING)
…shot them. All of them.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
They shot who, sir?

PAUL
All of the other drivers.

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
And you’re saying this happened in
Iraq? The country?

PAUL
Yes. Please, you have to help me.
They gave me a safety number to
call, but I had it stored in my
wallet and —

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Mister Conroy, this is 911
emergency in Youngstown, Ohio.

8.

PAUL
Ohio?

FEMALE 911 OPERATOR
Yes, sir. I’m not sure exactly how
you called here if you’re in
another country, but if you’d like,
I can patch you through to the
Sheriff’s Department.

PAUL
Sheriff’s Department? No…you
don’t underst…

(GIVING UP)
…forget it.
Realizing that his conversation is both lengthy and useless,
Paul ends the call. He checks the battery life on the phone.
It still holds steady at two bars.
He immediately dials another number, one that he can recall
with ease.
He again enters the 001 international code before making the
call.
Paul then dials his home phone. It rings several times, so
far unanswered.

PAUL
Come on, come on. Pick up.
Please.
After sitting through the agony of a few more rings, Paul is
met with the answering machine.

The voice of his young son, SHANE, is heard on the answering
machine greeting.

SHANE
Thanks for calling the Conroy’s.
We’re not home right now. Please
leave a message at the beep.
Thanks.
At the sound of the Beep, Paul leaves a frenzied, rambling
message.

PAUL
Linda, honey, it’s me. Listen, I
need you to contact the National
Guard right away. Or the Pentagon.
Tell them we were attacked in the
Diyala Provence, in Baqubah.

(MORE)

9.

PAUL (CONT’D)
They have to find me. Please help
me, baby. Please help them find me.
Paul hangs up. He dials his wife’s cell phone right away.
After several rings, her cell phone voice mail picks up. We
hear the sound of Linda, Paul’s wife, on her outgoing
message.

LINDA
Hi, this is Linda. Please leave a
message. Thanks and have a great
day.
The Beep sounds and Paul immediately tears into his voice
message.

PAUL
Linda, it’s Paul. I need you to
call me right away. This is an
absolute emergency. Call the
number that comes up on your phone.
Call me at that number. If I don’t
answer, call the Pentagon or the
F.B.I. I don’t know what the hell
is going on, but I’m buried in a
box…
Hearing himself say those last words gives him pause. The
gravity of the situation fully takes hold.

PAUL (CONT’D)
…I can’t breathe in here. Make
sure you call me right away.
Please, baby, please call me.

Paul ends the call. He nervously looks at the amount of
battery life remaining on the phone. Still holding strong at
two bars.
He notices the flickering light of the Zippo. It, too,
appears to be using up small amounts of oxygen. He closes
the lid, extinguishing the flame.
Total darkness. Silence, save for Paul’s increasingly heavy
breaths.
He begins to hyperventilate. He knows that preserving oxygen
is paramount, so he does his best to calm himself. The
healthy swig he takes from his flask helps.

10.

He flips open the cell phone. The light of the display
screen partially illuminates his face and some of the coffin
with a blueish hue. Paul again enters the overseas dialing
code, this time dialing 411 information.
The 411 OPERATOR answers.

411 OPERATOR
What city and state, please?

PAUL
Um…I don’t know. The F.B.I.,
wherever they are.
Paul reaches for his button-down shirt. Fishes for pens
stashed in his lapel pocket, while keeping the phone pressed
to his ear with his shoulder.

411 OPERATOR
Do you have a specific city you’d
like to be connected to, sir?

PAUL
I don’t care, any city. Just
connect me to the F.B.I.

411 OPERATOR
Sir, I have F.B.I. field offices
listed in Boston, New York,
Philadelphia, New Haven, Los
Angeles, Chicago, Denver —
Paul cannot bear to listen any further to this list that
seemingly never ends.

PAUL
Anywhere! Any city, just connect
me, please!

411 OPERATOR
I’m sorry, sir, but I’m not allowed
to do that.

PAUL
Fine, um…Chicago. Okay?

411 OPERATOR
Please hold for your number.
Paul is transferred to an AUTOMATED MESSAGE.

AUTOMATED MESSAGE
The number you requested, 312-421-

6700…

11.

Paul writes the digits of the phone number on the top of the
coffin with his pen. But, after the first three numbers, the
pen stops working. He hurriedly reaches back into his shirt
pocket to remove the other pen, which is actually a click-up
pencil. Click-click-click-click. He writes the last seven
digits, followed by the word “FBI.”

AUTOMATED MESSAGE (CONT’D)
…can be connected for an
additional charge of twenty-five
cents by pressing the number one.
He presses the number one and is connected directly.
After a few rings, SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS answers.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Chicago field office. Special
Agent Harris.

PAUL
Hello? Is this the F.B.I.?

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Yes it is, sir.

PAUL
I’m calling from Iraq. I’m buried
in the desert somewhere. I need
you to help me —

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Whoa, whoa, sir. Slow down. When
were you in Iraq?

PAUL
Now. I’m there now. I’m a truck
driver for CRT. I’ve been here for
nine months.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
May I have your name please, sir?

PAUL
Paul Conroy.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
(saying it as he writes it

DOWN)
Paul Conroy.
(back on the phone)
Okay, Paul, explain to me what’s
going on.

12.

Paul attempts to center himself so that he can accurately
tell his story.

PAUL
Alright. Me and a convoy of other
drivers were delivering kitchen
parts to a community center. As we
got closer, a bunch of kids started
throwing rocks at our trucks. Then
an IED went off up ahead and blew
up one of the other trucks. These
guys came out from behind the
houses with guns and started
shooting everybody right there on
the street.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Were you shot at?

PAUL
I don’t know!
(after a breath, calmer)
I don’t know. I was way in the
back of the convoy. I must have got
hit in the head with one of the
rocks and got knocked out. That’s
the last thing I remember. But now
I just woke up, and I was tied up
and buried in a coffin.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Who put you there?

PAUL
I guess whoever ambushed us.

Special Agent Harris sounds slightly skeptical of Paul’s
claims.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
A bunch of kids?

PAUL
No, you’re not listening. The kids
threw the rocks at us, but then
some Iraqi guys — maybe
insurgents, I don’t fucking know —
popped out of nowhere and started
shooting at us.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
I thought you said they didn’t
shoot at you.

13.

PAUL
They didn’t, I don’t know! But
they shot them!

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Sir, you’re going to have to stop
shouting if —

PAUL
I’m shouting because you’re not
listening! I need you to help me!
Please!!

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Hmmm…
Paul takes a moment to center himself.

PAUL
Can you trace my call? GPS or
something?

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Why is it that they didn’t shoot
you?

PAUL
I have no idea. They didn’t,
that’s all I know.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
What’s your social security number,
Paul?

PAUL
Why? Who cares? I’m buried in the
middle of the fucking desert! Who
cares what my social security
number is?! I’m an American
citizen. Just send someone to find
me!

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Do you know where you’re
…lo…if…dy..
The cell phone starts breaking up.

PAUL
Hello? What? I can’t hear you.

SPECIAL AGENT HARRIS
Bet…un…near…

14.

Suddenly, Special Agent Harris is not heard at all.

PAUL
Hello?! Hello?!
Paul checks the phone’s display, where he sees that the call
has been lost.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Shit!!
Cell phone service temporarily goes down. Paul lights the
Zippo to help him see the cell phone screen. He tries to
make a call, but nothing happens.
He shakes the phone, moves it around the coffin, all in
desperate hope that he will get a signal. He soon does.

He looks at the number for the F.B.I. that he has written on
the wall, thinking about calling them back. He then checks
the battery life on his phone, which remains at two bars.
Paul then decides to make a different call, this time to a
phone number he has committed to memory: his employer back in
the U.S., Crestin, Roland and Thomas (CRT).
He closes the lid of the Zippo, extinguishing the flame.
After a few rings, a CRT OPERATOR answers.

CRT OPERATOR
Thank you for calling Crestin,
Roland and Thomas. How may I
direct your call?

PAUL
Somebody, I need to talk to someone
right away. It’s an emergency.

CRT OPERATOR
Who is this, please?

PAUL
Paul Conroy. I’m a driver for you
guys. I’m calling from Iraq. My
convoy was attacked.

CRT OPERATOR
Sir, if this is a crisis situation
you need to contact the Safety
Number your were provided.

15.

PAUL
I know, I know, but I don’t have
it. They took it.

CRT OPERATOR
Who took it, sir?

PAUL
The Iraqis, I think. I don’t
remember, I blacked out.

CRT OPERATOR
I’m going to put you through to
Alan Davenport.

PAUL
Davenport? Who’s that?

CRT OPERATOR
Director of Personnel. Please
hold.

PAUL
Personnel? No, I need to talk —
Paul is placed on hold. Synthesized soft rock plays in the
background of the phone, maddening Paul further. Over the
music, a CRT SPOKESMAN is heard, speaking a recorded
testimonial during the on-hold message.

CRT SPOKESMAN
At CRT, we work with our clients to
provide effective and sustainable
solutions to the challenges they
face in our fast-growing, global
economy. As the premiere…

The message is interrupted by ALAN DAVENPORT’s outgoing voice
message.

ALAN DAVENPORT
You’ve reached Alan Davenport,
personnel director at Crestin,
Roland and Thomas. Please leave
your name and number at the tone
and I will return your call as soon
as possible.
The BEEP sounds. Paul is confused as to why he was patched
through to someone in human resources, but leaves a message
nevertheless.

16.

PAUL
This is Paul Conroy, I’m from
Hastings, Michigan. I’m a driver
for CRT, and my convoy was
ambushed…by insurgents or
terrorists. I don’t know. I don’t
know who it was. I’m stuck in the
ground, buried in a coffin and I
need help. Please send help. I’m
begging you. I think I’m in
Baqubah in the Diyala Provence.
Please send help right away. I
can’t breathe in here. I
can’t…please. I’m begging you.
I don’t know who else to call.

I…

Paul notices that his phone has again lost signal.

PAUL (CONT’D)

(EXASPERATED)
…fuck.
Paul drops the phone to his side, the screen still emitting
its glow.
He explodes with a mixture of rage and fear. He screams and
flails his feet and hands wildly, banging them against the
walls of the coffin. His animalistic outburst causes the
phone to close.
The coffin returns to pitch black.
After a long beat, Paul lights the Zippo, which remains
wedged in the sand compacted against the small hole in the
wall of the coffin.

Paul takes a few moments to catch his breath. He looks again
at the cell phone. Remembers receiving a Text Message.
The icon on the phone’s display indicates that he does, in
fact, have an unread Text Message waiting for him.
Paul quickly scrolls through the phone’s menu, which is all
written in Arabic, until he reaches what appears to be the
Text Message option. Opening it, he sees a series of ten
numbers.
Using his click-up pencil, he scribbles the numbers onto the
top of the coffin. Next to the number, he writes the word
“HELP?” Noticing that his phone has again picked-up a
signal, he dials the number.

17.

It rings once, but then the reception begins to falter.
After only two rings, the call is ended. Paul’s frustration
mounts. He is barely able to fight off another fit of
hysterics. He dials the number again.
It rings once. A second ring. In the middle of the third
ring, someone answers — but they do not say anything.

PAUL
Hello? Hello? Is anyone there?
Hello?
After a beat, Paul hears breathing on the other end of the
phone. He also hears a discordance of background sound; the
din of a room filled with Arabic-speaking men.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Hello? Who are you? Please, you
have to help me.
Still, Paul’s words are only met with slow, measured breaths.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Who is this? Hello?
The person on the other end eventually speaks. An Iraqi man,
JABIR, talks forcefully and aggressively in broken English.

JABIR
Breathe no breathe, American? Ah?
Breathe no breathe?

PAUL
What? I don’t know what you’re
saying. Who is this?

JABIR
American can breathe no breathe?

PAUL
No, I can’t breathe. Please get me
out of here.

JABIR
Get out?

PAUL
Yes, please get me out. Help me.

JABIR
Soldier.

18.

PAUL
No, no I’m not a soldier. I’m a
truck driver. That’s it. I’m not
a soldier. I’m a contractor.

JABIR
Contractor?

PAUL
Yes, that’s right. A contractor.
Not a soldier.

JABIR
Blackwater.

PAUL
No, not for Blackwater. I’m not a
security contractor. Truck driver,
I’m a truck driver. That’s all.

JABIR
You are American.

PAUL
Yes.

JABIR
Then you are soldier.
Despair falls upon Paul. It becomes clear that Jabir is
responsible for all of this. As such, Paul crosses out the
word “HELP?” Closes the lid of the Zippo, leaving only the
cell phone display screen to illuminate his face.

PAUL
No, I’m not. I’m here unarmed.
But, you still shot at us.

JABIR
In head and in throat, so you tell
no more lies.

PAUL
I’m not lying! We were all
drivers.

JABIR
Drive what?

PAUL
Trucks. The big trucks you see
driving around with the supplies?
That’s us. That’s me. We’re not
soldiers.

19.

JABIR
Five million money.

PAUL
What?

JABIR
Five million money tonight by nine
PM or you stay. Buried like dog.

PAUL
Five million dollars? From who?

JABIR
Your family.

PAUL
My family doesn’t have five million
dollars. If they did, I wouldn’t
be here.

JABIR
From Embassy.

PAUL
I don’t know, yes, the Embassy will
pay you. If you let me go, they’ll
pay you the money.
Silence on the other end of the phone.

JABIR
(after a long beat)
Nine PM, five million money.
Jabir hangs up the phone, forcing Paul to instantly come to
grips with the fact that he is being held hostage.
He lays back in the coffin, shell-shocked. Physically spent,
the cell phone falls from his hands and onto the floor. The
display screen casts a dim light throughout the coffin.

FADE TO:

INT. COFFIN – MOMENTS LATER

The Zippo lights. Paul holds it in his hand, using it to
illuminate the inside of the coffin. He attempts to push it
into its now customary resting place, but the sand has
loosened, making it difficult for the Zippo to stay in place.
It almost falls to the floor.

20.

Looking around, Paul sees there is a crack between two
planks, located on the opposite wall of the coffin. He
wedges the lit Zippo into the crack.
With his hands now free, Paul haphazardly positions himself
so that his back is facing the top of the coffin.
His every move is arduous; the claustrophobic nature of the
coffin bearing down on him.
Paul positions his bent knees underneath his chest, with his
shins and feet pressed against the bottom of the coffin.
Using the strength of his legs, he attempts to lift the top
off the coffin with his back.
Trickles of sand fall in from the side of the coffin,
sprinkling against the wooden base.

He fails, only to immediately try again. And again. And
again. Exhaustion sets in.
Staring ahead, the phone sits in front of him. He notices
that the battery life bars are still at one solid and one
blinking.
He grabs the cell phone, staring at it, trying to think of
someone else to call.
The battery life is limited. Every call has to count.
He tries to remember some phone numbers, but has trouble
recalling the information.

PAUL

(TO HIMSELF)
Come on, what’s her number?

He cannot remember the number he’s thinking of. He notices
that the flame of the Zippo flickers, indicating its use of
his much-needed oxygen. Paul closes the lid, extinguishing
the flame.
A second later, we see him, lit by the cell phone display
screen. He dials the international code for the United
States, followed by 411 information.
A MALE 411 OPERATOR answers.

MALE 411 OPERATOR
What city and listing, please?

PAUL
Hastings, Michigan. I’m looking
for Donna Mitchell.

21.

MALE 411 OPERATOR
I have two Donna Mitchells, sir.
One on Federal Road and one on
Ardmore Avenue.

PAUL
Ardmore Avenue…I think. Yeah.
Shit, I don’t know. Just give me
that one.

MALE 411 OPERATOR
Ardmore Avenue?

PAUL
Yes, Ardmore Avenue.

MALE 411 OPERATOR
Please hold for your number.
Paul is switched to an AUTOMATED MESSAGE.

AUTOMATED MESSAGE
The number you requested, 269-948-
1998 can automatically be dialed
for a charge of twenty-five cents
by pressing the number one.
Paul writes Donna’s number and name on the top of the coffin
and then presses the number one. He is connected.
Her phone rings and rings. Paul’s frustration is evident.

PAUL
Come on! Where the hell is
everyone?

The phone rings some more. Paul checks the battery life —
still at one and a half bars.
DONNA eventually answers.

DONNA
Hello?
Hearing her voice, Paul hurriedly places the phone to his
ear.

PAUL
Donna, it’s Paul.

DONNA
Hey, how’s it going?

22.

PAUL
Where’s Linda? She’s not answering
her phone. I need to talk to her,
I’ve been taken hostage by…
Donna interrupts. We realize, as does Paul, that her voice
was actually coming from her answering machine.

DONNA

(OVERLAPPING)
Fooled you. I’m not really home.
But if you leave a message, I’ll
get back to you as soon as I get
in. Bye-bye.
His hand falls to his forehead, defeated.

PAUL
Donna, I need to talk to Linda.
It’s an absolute emergency. Have
her call me. Use star sixty-nine
and find out the number I’m calling
from and have her call me…
Donna picks up the phone.

DONNA
Paul?

PAUL
Donna.

DONNA
What do you want?

PAUL
I need to talk to Linda. Where is
she?

DONNA
I don’t know. I haven’t talked to
her all day. Call her cell phone.

PAUL
Are you near a computer or
something?

DONNA
Uh…yeah. Why?

PAUL
Turn it on.

23.

DONNA
It is on.

PAUL
Look up the number for the State
Department for me.

DONNA
I was just heading out to the
supermarket. I really don’t have

TIME —

PAUL
Donna, please, please, please —
just get me the number.

DONNA
Is everything alright?

PAUL
No! Everything is not alright!
So, please, just look up the
number.

DONNA
Don’t fucking yell at me, Paul.

PAUL
I’m not yelling!

DONNA
Yes you are. Just like you did
last year at the cookout. I’m not
going to tolerate —

PAUL

(EXPLODING)
Just get me the fucking number!!
Get me the number, get me the
number!!
Donna hangs up on him. Realizing this, Paul bangs his fists
and claws at the top of the coffin, bloodying some of his
fingers and knuckles in the process.
He violently tosses and turns and screams at the top of his
lungs, like an animal trapped in a cage. Tears spray from
his eyes as spit shakes free from his mouth by the force of
his shudder.
He eventually calms quite a bit. Sniffing away tears and
taking notice of the damage he’s done to his hands, Paul
slows his breathing as best he can.

24.

He lies there, motionless.
The silence is almost comforting. Paul closes his eyes,
regretfully accepting what appears will be his inescapable
fate.
After a beat, he calls Donna back. Knowing it is Paul
calling, she answers right away, attitude at the ready.

DONNA
What?
It takes every ounce of Paul’s being to keep himself from
going off the deep end. He takes a beat to compose himself
and then finally offers a very delicate and deliberate
response.

PAUL
Donna, I’m very sorry I yelled.
But, I’m only going to ask you once
more to get me this number. If you
don’t get me this number, I’m going
to die.

DONNA
What?

PAUL
I don’t have time to explain.
Please…the number.

DONNA

(BEAT)
Hold on.
We hear Donna put down the phone. In the b.g., we hear the
sound of keys being pressed on a computer keyboard.
After a beat, she picks the phone back up.

DONNA (CONT’D)
Okay…State Department. It’s 202-

134-4750.

PAUL

202-134-4750?

DONNA
Yeah.
Paul writes the number on the top of the coffin, beneath the
man others. He writes the initials “S.D.” next to it.

25.

DONNA
What the hell’s going —
Paul hangs up on Donna mid-sentence. He dials the number the
State Department right away.
A STATE DEPARTMENT REP answers after a few rings.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
United States Department of State.

PAUL
I’m an American citizen, working in
Iraq. I’ve been taken hostage. I
need to speak to someone right
away.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
Where are you calling from, sir?

PAUL
From Iraq. I’m a truck driver for
CRT — Crestin, Roland and Thomas.
We were attacked and now I’m being
held for ransom.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
Are the kidnappers with you?

PAUL
No. I’m buried somewhere.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
You’re buried?

PAUL
Yeah, in a coffin, a wooden box.
It’s an old coffin, I think.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
Did you try contacting the military
out there?

PAUL
I don’t have the number.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
What number?

PAUL
I was given a number to call, a
safety number. But the people took
it.

26.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP
The people holding you hostage?

PAUL
Yes.

STATE DEPARTMENT REP

(DISCONCERTED)
I don’t know…hold on. Let me
connect you…hold on.

PAUL
No. Wait…
Paul is placed on hold. As he waits, his eyes wander around
the coffin. He looks at the numbers he has written.

After a moment, REBECCA BROWNING, a State Department
official, picks up the phone.

REBECCA
Rebecca Browning.

PAUL
Hello?

REBECCA
Yes, hello. I was just informed of
your situation.

PAUL
Yeah, my situation. I’m running
out of time and you people keep
putting me on hold. What the hell
is wrong with you?

REBECCA
I’m sorry.

PAUL
Don’t be sorry. Just help me.

REBECCA
I just have a few questions for
you, Mister Conroy.

PAUL
You’ve got to be kidding me.

REBECCA
It’s important that I get this
information. It will make a rescue

ATTEMPT —

27.

PAUL
Wait, wait, wait…how did you know
my name?

REBECCA
I’m sorry?

PAUL
I never gave you my name. I don’t
think I gave it to the other guy,
either.
Rebecca is silent on the other end of the phone.

PAUL (CONT’D)
What the hell is going on right
now?

REBECCA
(after a beat)
We received a call from a
representative at CRT. You left
him a message?

PAUL
Yeah…?

REBECCA
He contacted us right away.

PAUL
Well, since you know what the hell
is going on, what have you done to
get me out of here?

REBECCA
There’s little we can do from
Washington.

PAUL
So, that’s it? I’m just supposed
to rot in here because there’s
little you can do?

REBECCA
No.

PAUL
Then what?

REBECCA
I need to know where you were when
your convoy was ambushed.

28.

PAUL
In the Diyala Provence. In
Baqubah.

REBECCA
Okay. And has contact been made
with the kidnappers?

PAUL
Yes. The guy told me that he wants
five million dollars by nine
o’clock tonight.

REBECCA
Or else…?

PAUL
Or else he’ll bring me to Sea
World. What do you think, lady?
Even faced with Paul’s sarcasm, Rebecca remains stolid.
Professional.

REBECCA
We’ll do everything we can.

PAUL
So you’ll pay them?

REBECCA

(BEAT)
No. That we can’t do.

PAUL
Wait…what?

REBECCA
It’s the policy of the United
States government to not negotiate
with terrorists.

PAUL
To hell with that! It’s easy for
you to worry about policy, you’re
sitting in an air conditioned
office somewhere, probably
finishing up your sandwich from
lunch. You’re not the one stuck in
a coffin, buried in the God damn
desert!

REBECCA
I understand your frustration —

29.

PAUL
Frustration? Lady, I’m going to
fucking die in here. Understand
that!
Rebecca is silent on the other end of the phone. Paul
wonders if she is still there. The idea of being alone again
scares him terribly.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Hello?
Worried, Paul lights the Zippo. The reflection of the flame
dances on his frightened eyes.

REBECCA
I’m here.

Momentary relief. After a beat:

PAUL
Well, then say something. Tell me
how you’re going to get me out of
here.

REBECCA
What’s the number on the phone
you’re calling from?

PAUL
I don’t know. Did it come up on
your end?

REBECCA
No. It’s listed as unavailable.
Do this — take down this number.

Paul takes out his pen.

PAUL
Go ahead.

REBECCA

410-195-5453.
Paul writes the number onto the top of the coffin.

PAUL
Who’s that?

REBECCA
Dan Brenner. He’s the commander of
the Hostage Working Group over in
Iraq.

30.

Paul writes “D. BRENNER” next to Dan’s phone number.

PAUL
Hostage Working Group?

REBECCA
We formed it in 2004 to deal with
situations such as yours.
Paul shakes his head in disgust.

PAUL
Situations. I love how you keep
calling it that.

REBECCA
Did you write down the number?

PAUL
Yeah.

REBECCA
Good. Hold on, I’ll connect you
with him now. He should be
expecting you.

PAUL
What about the news? I’m going to
call them.

REBECCA
No. Do not, I repeat, do not
contact the news.

PAUL
Why?

REBECCA
It will only complicate things
further and threaten your chances
of rescue.
Paul doesn’t buy it.

PAUL
That’s bullshit. You’re just
covering your ass.

REBECCA
No, I’m covering yours. Everyone
who needs to know about this does.

31.

PAUL
You don’t go looking for something
if you don’t know it’s missing.

REBECCA
That’s why you need to contact Dan
Brenner right away.
Paul still contemplates contacting the news, but soon
acquiesces to Rebecca’s pleas for him not to.

PAUL
Fine.

REBECCA
I’m transferring you now.

Rebecca’s gone. Paul waits. Several beeps sound as he’s
being transferred.
Paul hears a faint sound coming from behind him, outside the
coffin. While the beeps continue to sound, he lights the
Zippo, circumspectly looking behind him. He doesn’t see
anything.
With the Zippo still lit, Paul takes a deep, centering
breath, followed by another.
A few more long beeps pass before a ring is heard. After two
rings, DAN BRENNER answers.

DAN
Brenner.

PAUL
Dan Brenner?

Dan is quick to figure out who it is that must be calling
him.

DAN
Is this Paul Conroy?

PAUL

(EXCITED)
Yes, yes it’s me. It’s Paul.

DAN
Paul, I was informed of what’s
going on. I want you to know that
we’re already working on trying to
get you out of there.

32.

Paul is relieved. His first glint of hope has appeared.
Tears of joy instantly escape his eyes.

PAUL
Oh, thank you, God.

DAN
I was told that we have until 9pm.
Is that right?

PAUL
That’s what he said.

DAN
Alright. That doesn’t give us a
whole lot of time. And just so I
have this right, the kidnappers
buried you in the ground?

PAUL
Yeah, in an old, wooden coffin.

DAN
Okay. My guess is that since
you’re able to get a cell signal,
you’re no more than a few feet
underground.

PAUL
I don’t know. Maybe.

DAN
What about battery life? How much
does the phone have left?
Paul looks at the display to find out.

PAUL
Less than half.

DAN
Okay. You have to conserve that
battery. Our best bet of finding
you is by tracking your cell
signal. Is the ringer set on a
sound or vibrate?

PAUL
Vibrate.

DAN
Press and hold down the asterisk
key to change it to a ring tone.
It will use less power.

33.

PAUL
What about my Zippo?

DAN
You have a lighter?

PAUL
Yeah.

DAN
Use it to look around for markings,
a logo — whatever you can find.

PAUL
Won’t it use up oxygen?

DAN
Not much. Don’t worry about that
now. Try to find —

PAUL
It’s really dark in here without
it.

DAN
I understand, Paul. Try to find
anything in there that might
indicate where that coffin was
made.

PAUL
You guys have to hurry.

DAN
We’re working as fast as we can,
Paul.

PAUL
Do you know if there were any other
survivors?

DAN
From your convoy?

PAUL
Yeah.

DAN
That’s still unclear at this point.

PAUL
I just wanted to do right by my
family. That’s all.

(MORE)

34.

PAUL (CONT’D)
I didn’t know it was going to be
like this over here.

DAN
I don’t think any of us did.
While on the phone with Brenner, Paul gets another call
coming in. He checks the display and reads the number.
Matching it against a number he wrote on the top of the
coffin, he sees that is Jabir calling.

PAUL
It’s him. He’s calling.

DAN
The kidnapper?

PAUL
Yeah. What do I do?

DAN
You know his number?

PAUL
Yeah.

DAN
Give it to me.

PAUL
What about the call?

DAN
Give me the number first.
The phone has rung several times. Paul fears that Jabir may
hang up.

PAUL
He’s going to hang up.

DAN
Take the call.

PAUL

BUT —

DAN
Take the call. Now.
Paul complies with Dan’s demand and switches to the other
line.

35.

PAUL
Hello.

JABIR
Two hour, six minute.
Paul looks at his watch. Indeed, he has but two hours and
six minutes until the time reaches 9pm.

PAUL
You have to give me more time.

JABIR
You talk to embassy? They give
money?

PAUL
Yes. No. I talked to…someone.
Government. They said that they
won’t pay the money.

JABIR
No pay?

PAUL
No. They said that they don’t
negotiate with terrorists.

JABIR
Terrorists? I am terrorist?

PAUL
Yes. You are terrorist, you son of
a bitch.

JABIR
You are terrified, so I am
terrorist?

PAUL
What did I ever do to you?

JABIR
Ever do?

PAUL
Yeah. I’m here because it’s a job,
to make money. That’s it.

JABIR
I have job until you come. Now, my
family have nothing.

36.

PAUL
That’s not my fault!
Jabir retorts with a spirited conviction similar to Paul’s.

JABIR
Nine, one, one was not my fault,
but still you are here! Saddam was
not my fault, but still you are
here!

PAUL
I told you, I’m only here to work.
To help rebuild.

JABIR
Rebuild what you destroyed.

Paul cannot handle his stress any longer. He begins to
crumble under the pressure.

PAUL
Stop! Just please, stop! I’m just
a guy. I’m just a truck driver.
Okay? I’m nobody that makes
decisions about anything. I just
want to go home.
Silence from the other end of the phone for an extended
period of time.

JABIR
You make video, ransom video.
This surprisingly comes as good news to Paul.

PAUL
Yes. Please. Get me out of here
and I’ll make the video.

JABIR
No. You make video now.

PAUL
What…? How?

JABIR
You use video on phone.
Paul’s hopes are dashed. His sanguine head falls back onto
the coffin floor.

37.

JABIR (CONT’D)
Near foot. You read note near foot
in box.
Paul shines the flame of his Zippo lighter toward his feet.
He doesn’t see anything.

PAUL
Where? I don’t see —

JABIR
Near foot. Read note inside box.
Paul repositions his legs as best he can. He can vaguely see
the corner of a small metal box, partially sticking out of a
broken plank on the bottom of the coffin.

PAUL
The video…if I make it, will you
let me go?

JABIR
Only if we get money.

PAUL
Nobody’s going to pay five million
dollars for me.

JABIR
We take less. One million money.

PAUL
If they pay it, will you let me go?

JABIR
(after a beat)
One million money.
Jabir hangs up, ending the call.
Paul sits motionless for a moment, soaking in all that Jabir
has just told him.
He again looks down toward his feet. He can see the
protruding corner of the metal box, but it’s positioned in
such a way that it will clearly not be easy for him to reach
it.
Paul then tries to clasp the box with his feet, but after
several unsuccessful attempts, he realizes that a new
strategy is necessary.

38.

He makes efforts to reposition himself in the coffin, so that
his head and feet will ultimately switch places. He
struggles, inch by troubled inch, to make this maneuver.
Sweat pours down the side of his face. The extremely tight
quarters of the coffin make the repositioning nearly
impossible.
After expending a great deal of energy doing so, Paul
eventually completes the turn of his body. He examines the
small, rusted metal box. On it is a cartoon picture of a
small Arab boy and girl playing with a red rubber ball.
Skeptical at first, Paul carefully examines the box and
shakes it gently. Items are heard rummaging inside.
He carefully opens it. A fluorescent green light shines from
inside.
Paul looks inside and finds a lit, green glow stick,
fluorescing brightly and now illuminating much of the coffin.
He closes the lid of the Zippo. Removes the stick.
Looking into the small box again, he finds several other
items: a small, disused flashlight; a second, unlit glow
stick; a jackknife; and lastly, a folded piece of paper.
He slowly unfolds the piece of paper. We see that his ransom
message is written in an unintelligible mix of English and
Arabic.
Paul shakes his head and lets out a sigh of disgust. He
crumbles up the paper into a ball and listlessly drops it to
his side. He covers his face with his hands, his labored
breaths echoing in his palms.

Under the low-light of the green glow stick, Paul picks up
the phone and dials his home.
Per usual, he gets the answering machine. His son, Shane, is
heard on outgoing message.

SHANE
Thanks for calling the Conroy’s.
We’re not home right now. Please
leave a message at the beep.
Thanks.
Paul’s eyes well up with tears. He smiles at the sound of
his son’s voice. The Beep is heard. Paul hangs up without
leaving a message.
He looks at the time. It’s 7:02pm. Battery life is holding
steady at one and a half bars. He remembers something.

39.

PAUL
Shit.
Paul presses and holds down the shortcut button on the phone
that changes the ringer from vibrate to an audible tone.
The glow stick begins to slowly fade.
Paul dials Dan Brenner.
After a few rings, Dan answers.

DAN
Paul?

PAUL
Here’s his number…

Paul presses the green key, bringing up the last numbers
dialed and received.

DAN
Hold on. Alright, go ahead.

PAUL
It’s 07902-24-921.
Dan says something to someone who is in the room with him,
and then returns his attention to Paul.

DAN
This is huge. Unless they’re using
a cloned line, we should be able to
find where this is coming from in
minutes.

PAUL
What about me? Can you track my
cell signal?

DAN
We’re having a lot of trouble with
yours. Seems to be an EDS line,
probably through one of the
Egyptian carriers.

PAUL
What does that mean?

DAN
That…it’s not going to be easy.

PAUL
He wants me to make a ransom video.

40.

DAN
No. Hold off for as long as you
can.

PAUL
If it’s going to get me out of
here, I’m making it.

DAN
The last thing we want is for this
to end up all over Al Jazeera.

PAUL
We?
Paul becomes angry, again sensing that more emphasis is being
placed on containing the situation than rescuing him.

DAN
This can’t turn into an
international incident.

PAUL
That’s all you people care about!
But what about me? Don’t you care
about me?

DAN
We do. That’s why we’re —

PAUL
No you don’t! You people don’t
care about any of us. I’ve had
eight friends killed out here, six
of them today. We don’t have any
guns, any armor. Nothing.

DAN
You’re not soldiers.

PAUL
Tell that to the people who put me
in this box! Tell that to the
people who shot my friends!

DAN
We’re doing the best we can.

PAUL
No, you’re not. All you people
understand are your secret plans
and your back room politics.

(MORE)

41.

PAUL (CONT’D)
If I were some diplomat or
something, maybe even a hostage
working group leader — or whatever
your fancy title is, I’d be out of
here by now. Wouldn’t I? But I’m
not, so I’m just supposed to keep
my mouth shut and die.

DAN
I need you to stay focused, Paul.

PAUL
Fuck you.
Dan’s heard enough.

DAN
Paul, listen to me: finding you is
our primary concern. Bottom line.
And we’re searching just as hard as
we would be for a four-star
general, so don’t literally waste
your breath suggesting otherwise.
Paul does not respond at first. Dan’s retort clearly has an
effect on him.

PAUL
Who are they? The people who put
me here?

DAN
They’re just that — people. No
different from you and me.

PAUL
I’m no terrorist.

DAN
Neither are they.

PAUL
How do you know that?

DAN
If you were homeless,
starving…actually, I take that
back. If your family was homeless
and starving, what would you do for
them?

PAUL
I wouldn’t kill someone.

42.

DAN
How can you be sure?

PAUL

(GETTING FRUSTRATED)
What difference does it make?

DAN
They’re criminals, desperate ones
at that. They don’t care about
anything other than getting the
money.

PAUL
So pay them, then.

DAN
Trust me, if it was an option, I
would do that in a heartbeat.

PAUL
How many others have there been?

DAN
Since I got here? Hundreds.
Journalists, contractors,
soldiers…hundreds have been
taken. It’s one of the only
functioning businesses out here.

PAUL
How many have you rescued?
Dan is reluctant to answer the question.

PAUL (CONT’D)
How many?

DAN

(BEAT)
Not many.

PAUL
Tell me their names.

DAN
Who?

PAUL
Any of them. Make me know they
really do matter to you.

DAN
Mark White.

43.

PAUL
Who was Mark White?

DAN
A kid from New Hampshire. Twenty-
six years old. Med student. Came
over here to help out local
doctors.

PAUL
What happened to him?

DAN
Insurgents grabbed him.

PAUL
When?

DAN
About three weeks ago.
Paul writes “MARK WHITE” on the top of the coffin, below the
list of phone numbers. He circles the name.

PAUL
You remember his name.

DAN
I remember all their names.

PAUL
(afraid to ask)
Did he…? Is he…?
The glow stick begins to fade.

DAN
Yeah. Yeah, Paul, he’s alive.
Hearing this affords Paul some semblance of relief.
Paul shakes the glow stick, returning it to its full
strength.

PAUL
Where is he?

DAN
Home. Probably happy to be back at
school.

PAUL
I want to get out of here.

44.

DAN
We found him; we’ll find you, too.

PAUL
How?

DAN
We already have a solid lead on the
number you gave us.

PAUL
You do?

DAN
A unit’s on it’s way over there
now.

This news calms Paul’s nerves.

PAUL
That’s…that’s good.

DAN
Yeah.

PAUL
What should I do in the meantime?

DAN
I know it’s hard, but try to relax.
The more worked up you are, the
more air you’re going to use.

PAUL
I can’t help it. I’m always
anxious. I take pills for it.

DAN
Do you have them with you?
Paul checks his pants pockets. He removes a small, orange
pill bottle.

PAUL
Yeah.

DAN
Take them. You need to preserve
your oxygen level any way you can.

PAUL
Okay.

45.

DAN
Is your Zippo still lit.

PAUL
Not now.

DAN
Good.

PAUL
I feel nauseous.

DAN
You have to calm down.

PAUL
I’m trying.

DAN
And you need to save that battery.
We’re expecting some intel in about
ten minutes. Call me back then.

PAUL
Okay.

DAN
Just hang in there, Paul.
The glow stick begins to slowly fade. Paul shakes it,
causing it to brighten only momentarily before dimming again.

PAUL
Yeah. I’m trying.
Dan ends the call. Paul lets out a deep breath, finding it
difficult to lay claim to its replacement.
He looks at his watch. It’s now 7:18pm. The ticking sound
of the second hand turning is inordinately loud, due to the
extreme silence of the coffin.
Just then, the cell phone rings. Checking the number on the
display, Paul sees that it is Jabir.
Paul answers.

PAUL
What?

JABIR
Did you make video?

46.

PAUL
No.
Jabir yells something in Arabic to the other Iraqi men we
hear in the background.
Collectively, they do not sound pleased. Slightly panicked,
in fact, though it is difficult to tell for sure.

JABIR

(TO PAUL)
You make video!

PAUL
Let me out and I’ll make it.

JABIR
No! You make video now. In box.

PAUL
I can’t. I can’t read the paper.

JABIR
Make video now!

PAUL
I can’t. I don’t know what you
want me to say. I can’t read the
paper.
Jabir is heard speaking with the men we hear arguing in the
background. Although they speak in Arabic, it is clear from
their tone that they are becoming worried and increasingly
hostile.
Jabir returns his attention back to Paul.

JABIR
You make video now.
Jabir ends the call. Paul closes the phone to help conserve
battery life.
He then reopens the phone and scrolls through the menu
options. Everything is written in Arabic. He eventually
comes across an icon with a movie camera — the video
function. He turns it on. Looks at himself though the
viewfinder.
After a beat, he closes the phone, clearly frustrated and
growing more panicked. His breaths grow heavy and rapid,
utilizing a great deal of oxygen.

47.

PAUL
I’m never getting out of here.
Paul begins to freak out, restlessly squirming inside the
coffin and pressing against the sides and top.
The glow stick fades out almost completely, offering very
little light. Paul shakes it, but with no change to its
brightness. Moments later, it dies. Paul tries the
flashlight. Click-click. Click-click. Nothing.
He bangs it a few times with his hand. The white light turns
on, but quickly turns back off. He twists the top, which
causes the flashlight to switch bulbs. A red beam emits
momentarily. Paul twists the top again and gives the
flashlight a few good whacks.

It turns on. White light shines dimly on his face.
He takes a breath.
In efforts to calm himself, he once again removes the orange
pill bottle from his pocket. He pours two into his hand. He
then removes his small, metal alcohol flask from his back
pocket and takes a large swig, swallowing the two pills in
the process.
Still, Paul’s heavy, labored breathing continues. He drops
four additional pills into his and swallows them with yet
another generous pull from the flask.
He sits and waits. Nothing is happening, except that his
extremely limited time keeps passing.
After a moment, Paul picks up the cell phone. He holds it in
front of him, hesitant to make a call. After some
consideration, he dials.
After a few rings, a NURSING HOME NURSE answers.

NURSING HOME NURSE
Mountain View Nursing Home.

PAUL
I was hoping I could speak with
Maryanne Conroy, please.

NURSING HOME NURSE
Um…okay. Ah…let me bring the
cordless phone to her room. Hold
on a moment, please.
We hear the Nurse walk down the tiled corridor floor. She
soon reaches Paul’s mother’s room.

48.

NURSING HOME NURSE (CONT’D)
Misses Conroy, you have a telephone
call, dear. Here, you can use this
phone.
Paul’s mother, MARYANNE, answers. Her voice is pleasant but
confused. It’s clear that she suffers from advanced stages
of Alzheimer’s Disease.

MARYANNE
Hello?

PAUL
Mom…it’s Paul.

MARYANNE
Who?

PAUL
It’s Paul, Mom. Your son.

MARYANNE
My son?

PAUL
It’s okay, Mom. How are you?

MARYANNE
I’m fine.

PAUL
That’s good.

MARYANNE
Who are you?

PAUL
It’s your son, Mom. It’s Paulie.

MARYANNE
Paulie?

PAUL
Yeah. Remember? We lived over on
Colfax Street, in the duplex.
Remember?

MARYANNE

(REMEMBERING SLIGHTLY)
Paulie?

PAUL
That’s right, Mom.

49.

MARYANNE
Is this Paulie?

PAUL
It is, Mom. It’s Paulie. How’s
everything at the home?

MARYANNE
Very nice. Your father and I have
been playing gin rummy every night.
It’s almost too much for Paul to take. He cries silent tears
over a heartbroken smile.

PAUL
Yeah…I don’t think Pop’s there
with you, Mom.

MARYANNE
How are you doing, sweetie?

PAUL
Not very good. This…uh, this may
be the last time I talk to you.

MARYANNE
That’s nice, honey.

PAUL
Did you get the flowers I sent a
few months ago?

MARYANNE
Flowers?

PAUL
Yeah, I sent…never mind. Listen,
I…I’m going to go now. I just
wanted to talk to you, you know,
just to say bye. I love you, Mom.
Maryanne doesn’t respond.

PAUL(CONT’D)
Did you hear me? Mom? I told
you…do you want to tell me you

LOVE —

MARYANNE
Yes, dear. Your father and I have
been playing gin rummy every night.

50.

PAUL
(after a beat)
Okay, Mom. Tell Pop I said hi.
Paul ends the call and instantly begins crying his heart out.
He lays there, sobbing relentlessly.
After a long beat, the cell phone rings. Decidedly different
than his past reactions to an incoming call, Paul seems
hopelessly disinterested. The ring is maddening.
He mindlessly presses the shortcut button, resetting the ring
to vibrate mode.
He eventually picks up the phone, but there is not anyone on
the other end. It’s then that he sees that it was not a call
that came in, but instead was a picture message.
Pressing what appears to be the Accept button, the incoming
picture begins to download.
Several seconds later, the picture downloads and an image
appears on the display of Paul’s cell phone. It’s of a woman
— bound and gagged, a gun pressed against the side of her
head.

PAUL
Oh no. No, no, no!
Paul frantically dials the number to reach Jabir. As soon as
the phone connects, Paul begins his desperate plea.

JABIR
Video make?

PAUL
Let her go. Please. Please don’t
hurt her.
The Woman is heard in the background of Jabir’s phone, crying
muffled words through her muzzled mouth.

JABIR
We shoot her if you no make video.

PAUL
No! No, please no shoot. No shoot
her.

JABIR
You get money. American million.

51.

PAUL
I will, I promise. Just don’t
shoot her. She’s a mother, she’s
got two kids.

JABIR
Two kids?

PAUL
Yes. She has two kids.

JABIR
I have five. Now only one. You
make video. Now!!

PAUL
Wait…

JABIR
No wait!! I give three seconds.

PAUL
I can’t read the paper.

JABIR
Three…

PAUL
No. Wait!

JABIR
Two…

PAUL
I don’t know what you want me to
say!

JABIR
One.

PAUL
Okay! Okay, I’ll make the video.
Just, please, don’t shoot.
Jabir does not fire his gun. Paul attempts to catch his
breath.

PAUL (CONT’D)
I need to hang up to make the
video. Okay? Is that okay?

JABIR
You have three minute to send
video.

52.

Jabir hangs up, ending the call.
Paul reaches for the balled-up piece of paper that has the
ransom script written on it. It takes some trouble for him
to grab it, but he is soon able to.
Placing the flashlight next to the paper, Paul is again
reminded of the incoherent nature of the script.

PAUL
(re: the script)
Fuck…
He drops the paper to his side and opens the phone, setting
it to the video record function. He places the flashlight
close to his face so as to make his image more visible on the
small, phone display screen.

He presses the record button.

PAUL
(speaking at the phone)
My name is Paul Conroy. I’m an
American citizen from Hastings,
Michigan. I’m a civilian truck
driver for Crestin, Roland and
Thomas. I’ve been taken hostage
somewhere in Iraq…and I need one
million dollars by nine o’clock
tonight, Baghdad time, or else I’ll
be left to die in this coffin I’m
buried in. I’ve been told that
if…
The flashlight goes out. Paul continues speaking in the
darkness. After a few quick smacks, the flashlight turns
back on.

PAUL (CONT’D)
…the money is paid, I will be let
go. If it’s not, I will die in
here. These threats are real and
will be followed through on.
Trying to think of more to say, Paul soon opts for not saying
anything further. He saves the message and then sends it to
Jabir.
We see that the screen displays an icon confirming the video
has been sent.
Paul places the phone on his chest. Still rubbing his
temples, his eyes begin to flutter a bit. He tries to
control his breathing and remain calm.

53.

He opens the phone and displays the photo of the Woman. He
stares admiringly at her, hoping dearly that she will not be
harmed.
The effects of the anxiety pills finally taking effect, his
eyes soon close and he drifts off to sleep.

FADE TO:

INT. COFFIN – LATER

Darkness once again. We hear the sound of Paul slowly
awaking, followed the sight of Zippo sparks.
It doesn’t catch. The second glow stick is snapped,
illuminating the coffin with a fluorescent green hue.

Paul starts to move, but suddenly freezes. His eyes widen.
His pupils dilate. Something is clearly very wrong, though
we cannot see what.
His eyes slowly shift downward, as if watching something move
down his body. Beads of sweat form across his brow. His
measured breaths are held for as long as they can be.
Moving excruciatingly slow, Paul lowers the glow stick toward
what he is looking at.
A shape moves across his stomach, underneath his T-shirt.
Paul’s eyes are fixed on whatever it may be. He cautiously,
slowly, moves the glow stick even closer.
The shape disappears just as the light of the glow stick
shines on whatever it may be. Still, Paul does not dare make
any sudden move.

Paul’s pant leg moves slightly, starting at the top, slowly
undulating toward his cuff.
Paul leans the glow stick in further. And further.
Carefully. Moving a millimeter at a time. He shifts the
position of his head slightly, charily, to see next to his
feet.
He leans in even closer with the glow stick. But then —
— his wary movement comes to immediate stop.
It’s a snake. A two-foot, saw-scaled viper. It has
positioned itself in the corner of the coffin, inches from
Paul’s feet.

54.

His terror evident, Paul very slowly pulls his feet back
toward his upper body, away from the snake. The confined
space offers little room for safety.
The snake turns its muscled neck to face Paul. Their eyes
meet for the first time. The snake hisses, poised to strike
at any moment. Paul raises his foot. Steels himself.
Prepares to preempt the snake with a solid stomp.
A more sensible plan soon prevails. After lowering his foot,
Paul cautiously removes the flask from his pocket. Slowly
unscrews the top. Splashes a small amount of alcohol on the
floor, close to the snake.
The snake recoils slightly, but then menacingly twists itself
into a new posture, ready to attack. Paul lowers the Zippo
to the small puddle of alcohol. After a few sparks —

— it lights. A flash-fire. The snake flails and hisses
wildly at the other side of a small fire wall.
The flame soon goes out. Paul moves fast. Throws more
alcohol, this time some of it lands on the snake itself. He
places the already lit Zippo against the puddle of alcohol
near the snake.
Another flash-fire, this time burning the snake. It hisses
loudly. Threateningly. It swings back and forth,
challenging the small wall of fire.
The fire soon extinguishes. The snake burrows into the hole
from where it likely entered the coffin, disappearing into it
with haste.
Paul hurriedly stuffs the hole with his discarded button-down
shirt. He then pours a small amount of alcohol over the
shirt and temporarily puts the flask on the ground, but does
not screw the cap on securely. He then wedges the lit Zippo
between a small space between two wooden planks.
With the snake situation handled, Paul finally lets out a
sigh of relief. Rubs his eyes. Tries to regain his
faculties. Looks over the list of phone numbers written
above him.
Suddenly, the cell phone vibrates. Paul frenziedly searches
for it, but he cannot find it. He then notices it has fallen
into the small hole near his feet, out of his reach.
He makes several attempts to grab the phone with his feet,
but he is unable to do so. It continues to ring.
His next efforts involve repositioning himself in the coffin
so that he completely turns to face the opposite end.

55.

Struggling through each move, Paul painstakingly begins to
turn himself. While turning, however, he inadvertently kicks
the Zippo from the side of the coffin — landing it on the
floor, up against the glow stick — and knocks over the
flask.
We see that the flame of the Zippo slowly melts the plastic
glow stick, causing it to dim slightly.
Worst still, and completely unbeknownst to Paul, a stream of
alcohol slowly makes its way from the flask and toward the
flame of the lighter, threatening to set the coffin ablaze.
Inch by inch, the flammable spirit gets closer.
Still in the midst of his repositioning, Paul looks back and
sees the alcohol nearing the flame. In a panic, he attempts
to reach and grab the Zippo. But, he finds himself stuck in
the middle of the coffin. He can’t budge either way.

PAUL
No, no, no!!
Desperately straining every muscle in his body, he extends
his arm backward toward the Zippo, hoping to move it away
from the spilled alcohol. He still can’t reach it, yet he
tries with all his might.
The phone stops ringing. He has missed the call.
He tries blowing at the flame, but his head is too far away
and his breath is not strong enough to do much more than
cause it to flicker.
With the alcohol now mere inches away from the flame, Paul
reaches for his shoe. His odd positioning makes reaching his
foot almost impossible. He struggles to undo the laces and
remove it from his foot.
With his face beet red from the force of his strain, Paul
finally removes his shoe. The mere inch of leg room this
creates allows him to slide his leg out from under him.
The trail of alcohol is just about to come into contact with
the flame —
— but Paul deftly maneuvers his body just in time to
awkwardly kick the Zippo out of the way and close the lid.
Paul breaths an enormous sigh of relief as he sits in the dim
light of the damaged glow stick. He notices another hole in
the coffin. As a precaution, he stuffs it with the cloth
that had previously been used to gag him.

56.

Just as he is about to grab the phone, he hears what appears
to be the faint sound of a Muslim call to prayer being
announced over the citywide PA system. The sound barely
makes its way through the hundreds of pounds of sand that
envelop the coffin.
A sign of hope, as well as a point of reference for his
location — albeit a very vague one.
He listens further as the call to prayer continues. The
light of the glow stick dims further.
Paul then opens his phone. Sees that he missed Jabir’s call.
He starts to call Jabir back, but stops. He instead
navigates through the various display menus. He soon reaches
what appears to be the Tools Menu, though it’s difficult to
tell because everything is written in Arabic. He becomes
frustrated as he fails to find what he is looking for.
On the verge of mental surrender, he sees something that
gives him pause. A smile crosses his face.

PAUL
(re: the phone screen)
There you are.
We see, on the display of the phone, that Paul has found a
listing of languages. He scrolls past many — “FRANCAIS,
DETSCHE, ESPANOL” — stopping at “ENGLISH.” Presses the
button, instantly making all the text on the screen readable.
He quickly navigates to the Tools menu. Scrolls down.
Locates the number of the cell phone he is using.
He scribbles the number onto the top of the coffin. Then a
second pass, making it bolder than the others.
Paul then dials his wife’s cell phone. After only a few
rings, he is met by her voice mail.

LINDA (V.O.)
Hi, this is Linda. Please leave a
message. Thanks and have a great
day.
The beep sounds, and Paul frantically proceeds right into his
message.

PAUL
Linda, here’s the number for the
phone. I just found it out. It’s
07902-42-884. You have to use the
international calling code first.

(MORE)

57.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Please call me as soon as you get
this. I love you…I love you.
Call me right away. Please.
Paul hangs up. He looks at the battery life left on the
phone. One bar. He then checks his watch. It’s 8:19pm.
Both are not good signs, and he knows it.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Oh shit.
He begins to panic. Grabbing the pocket knife that was left
inside the metal box, he slides the blade in the space
between the sides of the coffin and the top.
Paul grabs the glow stick. But, because it was partially
melted to the floor, the stick snaps in two. Liquid oozes
out of the small portion of the stick that remains stuck the
floor.

PAUL
Son of a…
Paul grabs the flashlight. Turns it on. It works for a
second, but then goes out. Shaking it only produces
intermittent beams of light.
He turns the top, switching to the red bulb. It works. The
coffin fills with a reddish hue, but then it, too, goes out.
Growing incensed, Paul switches back to the white bulb. It
works.
He returns his attention to the coffin. His efforts to use
the knife as a fulcrum are futile. Still, he tries. Bending
the blade well past its design, it nearly breaks off its
handle.
The flashlight turns off. After a good shaking, it turns
back on, emitting white light.
With oxygen levels extremely diminished, efforts of this kind
are all too much for Paul to take. He has to stop and try to
catch his breath.
As he endeavors to get his wind back, the cell phone rings.
Not a call this time, but instead a video message. It has
been sent by Jabir.
Paul’s trepidation is evident. He fears what the incoming
video may show.

58.

After a beat, he presses the Accept button and the video
downloads. Within seconds, the video plays on his phone
display screen. We see, in the video, the American Woman
that previously appeared in a picture message that was sent
to Paul. She is still bound at her wrists, but her gag has
been lowered.
She sits on her knees. Standing behind her are three men,
all with their faces shielded by Arab headdresses. They each
hold AK-47 assault weapons.
Paul watches in horror as the terrified woman speaks, through
her tears, into the camera.

WOMAN
My name is Pamela Gorham. I’m a
food service worker at F.O.B.
Anaconda, employed by Crestin,
Roland and Thomas. My captors’
requests for ransom have gone
unanswered, and —
The Woman, Pamela, looks off-screen to her right. Someone is
fast approaching her. She cowers, protectively holding her
bound hands in front of her face as she screams.

WOMAN (CONT’D)
(to the person)
No…wait!! Please — no!!
Another Iraqi man steps into the camera’s line of site, a
handgun already brandished.
Without as much as a moment’s hesitation, he fires two rounds
directly into Pamela’s head, killing her.

The video message ends immediately thereafter. Paul is in
complete shock.
He screams aloud, slamming his closed fist against the bottom
of the coffin.

PAUL
No! No, no, no!!!
Still in the throes of emotional torment, Paul vomits on
himself. He doubles over, only to vomit once again.
His body, taxed almost to the point of complete physical
breakdown, gradually slows and levels itself. With his vomit-
smeared face pressed cheek-down onto the bottom of the
coffin, Paul stares into nothingness.

59.

After a beat, his eye catches a glimmer of light — the blade
of the knife, reflecting off the beam of the flashlight.
Paul reaches for the knife. Lying on his back, still
suffering enormous mental strain, he places the cutting edge
of the blade against his neck. His jugular vein.
His hand shakes, his lips tremble.
The hand that holds the blade tightens its grip on the
handle. It, too, shakes.
Paul closes his eyes.
A small amount of blood begins to drip from the side of his
neck, where the blade of the knife rests, ready to open his
vein.

After a great deal of consideration, Paul throws the knife to
the foot of the coffin.
He can’t do it.
The flashlight falls from Paul’s chest. It turns off upon
landing on the floor of the coffin.
Paul sits in darkness. His breaths echo off the coffin
walls.
After a beat, he turns on the flashlight. It turns off after
less than two seconds. This time, however, he does not shake
it, nor does he hit it.
A moment later, we hear a click, followed by the sight of a
red light beam emitting from the flashlight. It holds
steady.

Paul shines it onto the names and phone numbers written on
the top of the coffin. He stops at “MARK WHITE.”
After a beat, he lowers the flashlight to his side.
He picks up the phone and dials Brenner. After one ring,
Brenner answers. He’s clearly not pleased. Paul, however,
is surprisingly calm. Detached. Almost disturbingly so.

DAN
Why the hell did you make that
video?

PAUL
It’s all a bunch of lies.

60.

DAN
What is? What are you talking
about?

PAUL
All of it.

DAN
All of what?

PAUL
Nobody gives a shit about any of
us. We’re nothing to you people.

DAN
We’re going to find you.

PAUL
By looking the other way?

DAN
You can’t start breaking on me now,
Paul. You have to stay strong.

PAUL
You let her die.

DAN
(after a beat)
No I didn’t.

PAUL
They shot her…and you didn’t do
anything.

DAN
We didn’t even know she had been
taken hostage.

PAUL
She sent three videos.

DAN
That’s what they told her to say.

PAUL
Why?

DAN
I don’t know.

PAUL
What do you know?

61.

DAN
That your ransom video already has
47,000 hits on YouTube. And all
the major networks are playing it,
including Al Jazeera. So, now your
captors have no choice but to
follow through.

PAUL
I found out the number to this
phone.

DAN
How?

PAUL
I found a way to change the display
language. I figured that out, and
you didn’t. Why?

DAN
Because I didn’t. Just like you
and every other person on this
planet, there are some things I
know and some things I don’t.

PAUL
Then how are you ever going to find
me?

DAN
Their signal was cloned, like we
figured. But, we’re close. Real
close.

PAUL
What about mine?

DAN
We’re working on that, too.

PAUL
I’m near a Mosque. I could hear
the call to prayer over the P.A.

DAN
Good. That means that we’re in the
right area.

PAUL
You’re nearby?

62.

DAN
I spoke with soldiers from the
third ID who were escorting your
convoy.

PAUL
They’re alive?
After a beat:

DAN
Not all of them. Both Bradley
tanks were hit with IEDs. The rest
got caught in small arms fire.

(BEAT)
What the hell happened out there,
Paul?

Paul doesn’t answer at first.

DAN (CONT’D)
Paul.
After a beat:

PAUL
We had just left Anaconda,
everything seemed okay. We knew
that a bunch of our CB radios had
been stolen and that the Iraqis
were listening in, so we made sure
to switch from our usual channels.
Pam was riding with Jeff Breer, the
convoy commander. She wanted to
ride with me like she usually did
when she hitched a ride from base,
but it seemed safer for her to be
with the C.C. As we headed down
the road, all these kids came
running into the street. Dozens of
them. It almost seemed like they
were expecting us, except we got
there faster than they thought we
would. So they run on up in front
of me, and I slam on my brakes.
The rest of the drivers were
already further up ahead, so they
kept going. Next thing I know, one
of the lead trucks got hit by an
IED. I hear Tommy Wilkes on the
radio saying, Sandman’s hit,
Sandman’s hit. He’s…he’s
everywhere.

(MORE)

63.

PAUL (CONT’D)
That’s when the Iraqis came out of
their mud huts from the side of the
road and started shooting
everybody. I couldn’t believe what
was happening. It seemed like slow-
motion, like I was watching it on
TV. People — my friends — were
getting killed, and all I could do
is watch. I didn’t even notice
that the kids were throwing bricks
and rocks at me until one split my
windshield. Sort of snapped me out
of my trance. But then, I guess I
got hit in the head with a rock,
`cause I blacked out.

DAN
Do you happen to remem…mo…
nea…
The cell phone service begins to cut out. Suddenly, the
coffin begins to vibrate slightly, dropping sand granules
through the crack and onto the wood bottom, followed by the
faint sound of an explosion.
Within seconds, the explosions grow louder and more
proximate. The vibration becomes so intense that it
violently shakes Paul around the coffin.
The sound of jet plane engines are heard coming from above,
flying by as the massive explosions continue.
Sand seeps in through the crack between the top and sides of
the coffin as it shakes. Paul does his best to brace
himself, but the bombardment is far too powerful.

A large crack forms in the wooden cover to the coffin,
spanning almost its entire length. Sand immediately pours
through the concave shaped crack, seeping in onto Paul like
an hourglass.
Fearing that the top of the coffin may collapse under the
immense pressure from the sand above, Paul positions himself
underneath it and presses with all his might. He grunts and
screams loudly, using what little strength he has left to
keep the top from caving.
The shaking soon stops, though the steady flow of sand
continues.

64.

In efforts to prevent the sand from filling the coffin any
faster, Paul removes the button-down shirt from the hole and
stuffs into the area where it enters with the greatest
volume. He removes the balled-up cloth from the other hole
and does the same with it. Both offer very little help.
The flashlight falls to the floor. The red light beam turns
off. Darkness. The sound of sand steadily pouring down.

PAUL

(EXHAUSTED)
Oh no…no…
Paul clicks the flashlight to a different setting. White
light shines, but then goes out. He shakes the flashlight
and it stays on, shining its normal white beam.

He assesses his situation, noticing that the coffin is
already filled with a small layer of sand; a situation that
is only going to get worse with time.

PAUL
This can’t be happening.
We see that Dan Brenner is no longer on the phone, and that
the display menu shows an icon of a phone with a line through
it — No Service Available.
Once he feels it is secure enough, Paul slowly moves his body
away from the crack. Although slightly caved, it does not
show any more signs of possible collapse.
Sweat drenches his face. His eyes affixed, in utter
disbelief, on the sand as it spills into the coffin, filling
in around him inch-by-inch.

He grabs the cell phone, only to see that he does not have a
signal.

PAUL (CONT’D)
No. Come on. Please work.
He shakes the cell phone and moves it all around the coffin,
hoping that it may somehow help. His efforts are futile.
The flashlight goes dead. He hits it, shakes it. It turns
back on. The brightness is diminished.
Still the sand continues to fall, drowning him deeper and
deeper in a pool of granules.
Then, very surprisingly, the cell phone rings. Paul answers
right away.

65.

PAUL

(FRANTICALLY)
Hello? Hello? Who’s there?
Alan Davenport answers calmly from the other end.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Is this Paul Conroy?

PAUL
Yes. Yes, this is Paul. Who are
you?

ALAN DAVENPORT
Paul, my name’s Alan Davenport, I’m
the personnel director here at
Crestin, Roland and Thomas.

PAUL
I left you a message.

ALAN DAVENPORT
You did. I also heard from Rebecca
Browning over at the State
Department. Are you able to speak
on the status of your situation?

PAUL
It’s worse. There was an explosion
or something. The coffin’s
breaking, there’s sand pouring in
from everywhere. I only have a
half an hour before —

ALAN DAVENPORT
Okay, okay. Slow down. You should
try to stay calm. Tell me
something, Paul, who have you
spoken to?

PAUL
The hostage takers, Dan Brenner
from the hostage working group —

ALAN DAVENPORT
Okay, Paul. I’m with you. How
about the media. I know your
ransom video leaked, but have you
spoken directly to anyone about
what’s going on?
The flashlight goes out. Paul hits it a few times and it
turns back on.

66.

PAUL
No.

ALAN DAVENPORT
That’s good. It needs to stay that
way. It’s important that we keep
this situation as contained as
possible.
Paul finds Alan’s obvious concern with doing damage control
to be infuriating.

PAUL
About three inches to my right,
there’s a wall. Three inches to my
left, there’s another wall. And
about four inches above my head,
there’s a roof that’s about to
collapse and drown me in sand. I
think this situation is pretty
contained.

ALAN DAVENPORT
I know you’re upset —

PAUL
Help me! Help me! What are you
going to do to help me?!

ALAN DAVENPORT
I know you’re upset. And, from
what I’ve been told, steps are
being taken to get you out of
there. So, hopefully it won’t be
much longer.

PAUL
Thank God.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Yes, thank God.

(BEAT)
I’m going to switch on a recorder
right now. Just a second…
Paul’s visage expresses his confusion.
A click is heard in the b.g. of Alan’s phone, followed by a
low, steady hum.
Alan’s speech becomes very laconic. His questions are
clearly being read from a Human Resources handbook of some
kind.

67.

ALAN DAVENPORT (CONT’D)
This is Alan Davenport, Personnel
Director for Crestin, Roland and
Thomas, Incorporated. The date is
October 23, 2006. I am speaking
with Paul Conroy. Mister Conroy,
are you aware that I’m recording
this conversation?

PAUL
What…?

ALAN DAVENPORT
Please answer the question.
The flashlight goes out again.

PAUL
Shit.
Paul hits it, but it does not catch. He sits in darkness.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Mister Conroy?

PAUL
Yes. Yes!

ALAN DAVENPORT
And do I have your permission to do
so?

PAUL
Why do you need my permission?
What is all this?

ALAN DAVENPORT
I need you to answer yes or no,
please.

PAUL
Yes. Alright? Yes!
Paul hits the flashlight. It turns back on.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Thank you. Now, Mister Conroy,
when were you hired by CRT?

PAUL
About nine months ago. Around
January of 2005. Why are you
wasting time with this?

68.

ALAN DAVENPORT
I have your official date of hire
as January 4th, 2005. Is that
correct?

PAUL
Who cares? This is fucking crazy —

ALAN DAVENPORT
January 4th, 2005. Is that
correct?

PAUL
Yes!

ALAN DAVENPORT
And during your initial training,
before being sent to Iraq, were you
made aware of the dangers inherent
to the position for which you were
hired.

PAUL
You mean when I came down there to
Dallas and you guys said that all
of the trucks would be armored and
have bulletproof glass?
The flashlight dims. Paul angrily shakes it, returning it to
full strength.

PAUL (CONT’D)
You mean when you told us that
things were safer than ever over
here? Is that when I was made
aware?

ALAN DAVENPORT
I need you to answer yes or no,
please.

PAUL

(BEAT)
Yes.
The flashlight begins to slowly dim.

ALAN DAVENPORT
During that time, did you also
receive and sign an employment
contract with CRT, which thoroughly
explained company policy as it
pertained to your specific terms of
employment?

69.

PAUL
Yeah, I signed a bunch of things.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Yes or no.

PAUL
Yes. I signed the contract. Yes!

ALAN DAVENPORT
It’s our understanding that you
were taken hostage in Iraq two
hours ago, is that also correct?

PAUL
Yes. That’s completely correct.
What is the point of all this?

Alan breaks from the H.R. handbook script, though his tone
remains just as matter-of-fact. The flashlight continues its
steady, slow dim.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Our legal department requires that
we obtain a sworn affidavit from
employees, confirming that they
understand the reasons for their
forced separation from the company.
As of this morning, your employment
with CRT was officially terminated.

PAUL
Wait, wait, wait —
The flashlight dims even more.

ALAN DAVENPORT
It was brought to our attention
that you were engaging in relations
with a fellow CRT employee —
Pamela Gorham.

PAUL
No. Wait —

ALAN DAVENPORT
Stipulated in your contract was a
fraternization clause, in which it
was stated quite clearly that any
relationship, be it romantic or
sexual in nature, deemed
inappropriate by CRT senior
officials is grounds for immediate
termination.

70.

PAUL
We…we were just friends.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Our records indicate differently.

PAUL
This is bullshit.

ALAN DAVENPORT
We’re also legally required to
inform you that because you were
technically no longer under the
employ of CRT at the time of your
abduction, we cannot be held
accountable for any injury that may
befall upon you after your official
date and time of termination.
Therefore, in your case, that
includes this incident or any
consequences that may result from
it.
Paul sees where Alan is going with this. He’s thunderstruck.

PAUL
What about my insurance money? My
family will need that money…

ALAN DAVENPORT
Given that you were alive up until
the time of your termination —

PAUL
You son of a bitch. You can’t do
this.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Do you understand everything —

PAUL
You can’t do this!
Alan takes a second before trying again.

ALAN DAVENPORT
Do you understand everything
you’ve been told, Mister Conroy?
Paul does not answer.

ALAN DAVENPORT (CONT’D)
Mister Conroy?

71.

After a long beat:

PAUL
Go to hell.

ALAN DAVENPORT
That concludes our interview with
Paul Conroy. I am now turning off
the recorder.
A click is heard. The humming ceases.

PAUL
You people can’t just wash your
hands of this. You bastards put me
here.

ALAN DAVENPORT
I’m sorry.
Alan ends the call.
Paul looks at the phone — it is still holding a steady
signal. Battery life, however, is running quite low. All
that remains is one blinking bar, indicating that Paul has
very little battery life left.
He shakes his hand free of the pile of sand that now covers
it and looks at his watch. It’s 8:31pm.
The flashlight bulb dims until it goes out completely. Only
the light of the cell phone display lights the coffin.

PAUL
Come on…

Wasting little time, Paul dials Jabir. The phone rings and
rings, but Jabir does not answer. Checking to make sure the
he dialed the correct number, Paul matches it against the
phone number he wrote onto the wall of the coffin.
Seeing that he did, in fact, dial correctly, Paul again tries
to call Jabir. While he waits through the many rings, he
tries relighting the Zippo. Spark…spark…it catches.
No one answers. Paul’s disquietude is evident in his
increasingly erratic behavior.

PAUL
Answer the phone!!
Paul tries Jabir once again, but still he does not answer the
phone.

72.

PAUL
(desperate, exhausted)
Why won’t you answer?!!
It’s then that something occurs to Paul. He stares at the
crack in the top of the coffin and the sand that pours in at
an alarmingly fast rate.
The crack has split Jabir’s written phone number in half.
The aerial bombing. He wonders how it may have affected
Jabir and, consequently, his own chances of survival. He
places his hand under the point from where the sand pours in
most, allowing it to collect on his palm and slip through his
fingers.
The flickering Zippo flame tells of the diminished amount of
oxygen.
Paul attempts to control his breathing, realizing full well
that there are not many more breaths he will be able to take.
He then calls Dan Brenner. After a few rings, Brenner
answers.
Paul is surprisingly serene.

DAN
Paul, is that you?

PAUL
They’re dead.

DAN
How do you know that?

PAUL
I just do.

DAN
Three F-16s levelled parts of the
city a few minutes ago.

PAUL
I know. I felt it. Did they know
I was here?
The Zippo flame flutters. Weakens.

DAN
(after a beat)
Yeah.

73.

PAUL
Did they care?
Dan does not answer.

PAUL (CONT’D)
These people that took me — if
they’re dead, they can’t tell you
where I am.

DAN
We can still try to track down your
signal.

PAUL
You tried that already.

DAN
We can try again.
Paul appreciates Dan’s effort, but he knows there is little
hope left for him.

PAUL (CONT’D)
It’s over, isn’t it?
After a long beat:

DAN
No.
Paul doesn’t say a word. He knows that Dan is lying. After
a beat, Dan comes clean.

DAN (CONT’D)
Yeah.

The flame of the Zippo becomes smaller. It clearly has
little life left.

PAUL
What should I do?

DAN
I don’t know.

PAUL
That’s right — just like everyone
else on the planet, there are some
things you know and some things you
don’t.

74.

DAN
I wish this could have gone
differently.

PAUL
Yeah…me too.
After a long beat, Paul ends the call. He forces a smile to
his lachrymose face.
Utterly hopeless, he opens the phone and turns on the video
feature. He turns the phone to face himself, projecting his
image on the display.
He presses Record.

PAUL (CONT’D)
This is Paul Steven Conroy. Social
Security number 048-32-1198, date
of birth 3/19/68. This video will
serve as my last will and
testament. To my wife, Linda
Conroy, I leave the seven hundred
dollars in my personal savings and
whatever I have left in my annuity.
To my son, Shane Conroy, I…I
don’t know. I don’t have anything
else. My stuff, like, my clothes.
I wish I had more…I wish I had
done more. Your dad wasn’t really
much of anything, Shane, I’m sorry.
Maybe if I was a famous baseball
player, or a guy who wore a suit to
work, I would have more to leave
you. But, you can be one of those
people if you want. You can be
whatever you want. Just promise me
that when you get older, you’ll
take good care of your mom. And
promise me that you’ll always try
to do the right thing, no matter
what. I love you very much, Shane.
Maybe I never said that
enough…maybe I did, I don’t even
know. That probably means I
didn’t.

(BEAT)
I’m sorry, Linda. I should have
listened to you.
Paul ends the video and closes the phone. He carefully
places the phone into his pocket, where it may hopefully be
found if he ever is.

75.

He lays back, staring at the almost completely extinguished
Zippo flame, as the sand continues to rain on him.
Down and down it pours, the sands of time passing might and
main through the cracks.
The Zippo flame goes out. Paul sits in the darkness,
resigned to what apparently will be his fate.
Hold on black for several seconds…until —
— suddenly, from inside Paul’s pocket, he hears a faint
vibration. It’s the cell phone. He looks at the number of
who is calling him. Shines the light of the cell phone on
the list of numbers written on the top of the coffin. He
can’t believe what he’s seeing.

Paul answers immediately.

PAUL
You’re not dead.
Jabir is heard speaking frantically in Arabic to the several
other people in the room with him.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Hello? Hello?!
Jabir turns his attention to Paul.

JABIR
Where is money?

PAUL
I don’t know.

JABIR
What don’t know?

PAUL
I don’t know where the money is.

JABIR
Liar!

PAUL
I’m not lying! I swear.

JABIR
Swear?

PAUL
I’m telling the truth.

76.

Sounding panicked, Jabir again speaks in Arabic to the other
people in the room with him. They respond accordingly.
Paul tries to turn on the flashlight. It doesn’t work.
Jabir returns his scornful attention to Paul.

JABIR
From Embassy, you get money now!

PAUL
I can’t!

JABIR
You will!!

PAUL
I need more time. Please.
Paul shakes and hits the flashlight. It still does not work.

JABIR
No more time!

PAUL
There’s sand pouring in here. I
can’t…it’s everywhere. Please,
let me out of here and I will get
you the money.
Jabir utters something in Arabic to someone standing next to
him, seemingly asking a question and getting an answer from
the same individual.
Paul unscrews the top of the flashlight. Switches the
positioning of the batteries. Screws the cap back on. Hits
the switch.
Nothing.
Jabir returns to the phone.

JABIR (CONT’D)
You show blood.

PAUL
What?
Paul unscrews the top of the flashlight again. Removes the
batteries. Bites down on them a few times. Blows hard
inside the flashlight tube.

JABIR
You show blood, they give money.

77.

PAUL
No.

JABIR
You cut off thumb finger, send
video.

PAUL
I’m not doing that.

JABIR
Yes!
Paul puts the batteries back inside the flashlight. Begins
screwing on the cap.

PAUL
No.

JABIR
No?

PAUL
That’s right, no. You let me out
of here, and I’ll cut off my whole
God damn hand if you want.
Jabir again says something to someone in the room with him,
returning to Paul after a brief moment.
Paul finishes closing the top of the flashlight.

JABIR
You have wife?
Click. The flashlight turns on!

Paul considers Jabir’s question to be a potential sign of
compassion.

PAUL
Yes, I do. And a son. A young
son. I want to go home…to see
them. Please, sir.

JABIR
Sir?

PAUL
Yes. Sir. I say that out of
respect…to you.

78.

JABIR
243 East Walnut Street. Hastings,
Michigan. U.S.A.

PAUL

(CONCERNED)
That’s my…why did you say that?

JABIR
You show blood…or they show
blood.

PAUL
That’s…you’re lying. You’re
nobody…all of you. You can’t get
to them.

JABIR
No?

PAUL
No. You’re peasants, criminals,
that’s all. You don’t even know
where Michigan is.

JABIR
Detroit. Ann Arbor.
Even this basic knowledge is enough to make Jabir’s threats
that much more real.

PAUL
You looked at a map. That’s all
you did.

JABIR
You show blood, or they show blood.
Send video by five minutes.
Jabir ends the call. Realizing that Jabir is gone, Paul
quickly dials his wife’s cell phone.
After several rings, her voice mail picks up.

LINDA (V.O.)
Hi, this is Linda. Please leave a
message. Thanks and have a great
day.

PAUL

(FRANTICALLY)
Linda, listen to me: you and Shane
have to go somewhere… anywhere.

(MORE)

79.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Don’t stay at the house, whatever
you do, do not stay at the house.
The guy…the kidnapper, he knows
our address. He stole my license
and now he knows where we live. Go
to the Sheriff’s station if you
have to, just don’t go home.
Paul hangs up. He takes a moment to look around, noticing
that the coffin is almost halfway filled with sand.

PAUL (CONT’D)
(re: the sand)
Holy God.
Paul then dials Dan Brenner. After only one ring, the call
goes directly to voice mail.

The flashlight starts to dim. Paul shakes it, causing it to
regain its strength.

DAN
This is Daniel Brenner. Please
leave a message at the tone.
The beep sounds. Paul delivers a frenzied message.

PAUL
Brenner, where are you?! He’s
alive! He just called me! Call me
right away! The fucking guy is
still alive!
Paul hangs up the phone.
Unsure what to do next, Paul’s heartbeat races. He fidgets,
nervously shaking and tapping his thumb against the phone.
He questions the validity of Jabir’s threats toward his
family.

PAUL

(TO HIMSELF)
They can’t find them.
They…can’t. There’s no way.
Paul opens the phone and brings up the photo of Pamela, bound
and gagged. The image causes Paul to second guess himself.
The flashlight goes out. The cell phone’s display
illuminates Paul’s face.

80.

He then replays the video in which Pamela is seen being shot.
Reliving the experience is extremely painful, though his
concern is more on his own family at this point. However,
the video is enough to convince Paul of Jabir and his
cohort’s convictions.
Paul tries the Zippo. Nothing. Only sparks. He tosses it
aside.
His breathing grows erratic and labored. His eyes dart from
side-to-side, his throat groans involuntary noises of fear.
Paul then looks at the knife, and then at his watch. He has
less than two minutes to send the video to Jabir.
Fearing for the safety of his family, he must meet Jabir’s
demands.

He hits the flashlight a few times. Click. It turns on.
Paul opens the phone and sets it to take video. He places it
flat onto the surface of the sand, which by this point is
already filling the coffin halfway. He then reaches for the
knife.

PAUL (CONT’D)
Oh my God. Oh my God.
He places his hands against the side of the coffin, spreading
his fingers. He stares intently at his thumb.
With the extremely sharp knife in hand, Paul slowly lowers it
just above his thumb. He inhales and exhales deep breaths,
almost hyperventilating.

PAUL(CONT’D)
Holy shit.
Paul then reaches into the sand and finds one of the expired
glow sticks. He shakes the sand off of it and places it
across his mouth, biting into it hard.
His heart races, his breaths are the deepest he’s ever taken.
After placing the flashlight on the ground, to ensure that
the camera picks up the image, he presses the record button
on the cell phone.
Grinding his teeth into the glow stick and letting out a
primordial scream, Paul closes his eyes and chops down with
the knife.
We see, through the display screen of the phone, Paul sever
his thumb with a swift chop of the blade.

81.

A small spray of blood spatters onto his face as he screams
out in unfathomable pain.
He falls to his side, still screaming and writhing. He
reaches for his discarded outer-shirt, which is still stuffed
in the crack to help slow the influx of sand. Removing the
shirt from the crack instantly causes the sand to fall into
the coffin more rapidly.
Paul wraps the shirt around his hand. The blood quickly soaks
right through it.
He is fading fast. His blood loss is great. Shock sets in.
He musters up the strength to send the video to Jabir.
To secure his shirt over the wound, Paul removes his belt
from his waist and pulls it tight over his wrap.

Growing increasingly more pale, Paul teeters on the verge of
consciousness. Everything becomes blurry to him.
The phone falls from his hand. He shivers. His lips turn a
light shade of purple and his face ash white. Everything
becomes more and more blurry. He fights with every last
ounce of strength to remain conscious.
While laying against the side of the coffin, the phone
vibrates once again. To Paul, the vibration against the wood
seems so distant, so foreign. The vibration grows louder and
louder in his mind, sounding more and more like the sound of
rotating helicopter blades.
He then hears what sounds like VOICES, yelling from on top of
the coffin.

VOICE #1
He’s down here!

VOICE #2
Get him out! Keep digging!

VOICE #3
Paul, we’re here!
The cacophony of voices form a mosaic of sound in Paul’s
head, each overlapping the other in distant echoes. Shovels,
digging deep into the ground, are heard banging against the
top of the coffin.
The top of the coffin is torn open, sending a brilliant ray
of white light onto Paul. He stares into the light, crying,
eking out a tortured smile.

82.

Suddenly, Paul is back in the same predicament. The voices,
the shovels, the light — it was all a hallucination, brought
upon by his loss of blood.
He’s still alone. He’s still in the coffin, which continues
to fill up with sand. He is too exhausted to display his
disappointment.
The phone continues to vibrate. It soon stops. Paul is in
too poor condition to show any concern.
After a beat, the phone begins vibrating once again. After
several rings, Paul languidly picks it up. He barely
recognizes the number through his extremely blurred vision.
He’s so weak, he’s barely able to formulate words. He spits
out stray particles of sand from his mouth.

PAUL
Yeah?

DAN
Paul, it’s Brenner.
Paul doesn’t have the strength to answer.

DAN (CONT’D)
Paul? Are you there? Paul?

PAUL
I’m…here.

DAN
We’re coming for you now. You hear
me? We know where you are.

This news serves as somewhat of an adrenaline rush for Paul,
who musters up even the modicum of strength he seemingly did
not have left in him.

PAUL
You’re coming?

DAN
We are, Paul. We’re almost there
now.

PAUL
How do you know?

DAN
Coalition forces picked up a Shiite
insurgent just outside of Baghdad.

(MORE)

83.

DAN (CONT’D)
Said he knew where an American was
buried alive. He agreed to show us
where if we let him go.

PAUL
You’re coming for me?

DAN
We’re practically there already.
An impossible smile fights its way to Paul’s lips. His
momentary joy is just that, however, for the sand has almost
completely filled the coffin by this point.

PAUL
You have to hurry.

DAN
We are.

PAUL
No…you have to hurry. The
sand…it’s filling up fast.

DAN
Just hang in there for three more
minutes. This will all be over
soon, I promise.
Paul is very hopeful that Dan is correct in his assumption.

PAUL
Okay. I believe you. Thank you.
Thank you.
A beep is heard. Paul has another call coming in. He’s
visibly elated upon seeing who it is.

DAN
Three minutes. Try to —

PAUL
I have to go!

DAN
Paul, no —

PAUL
Call me right back.

DAN
Paul!

84.

PAUL
Call me right back.
Paul switches to the other call, despite the fact that he has
a mere eight inches left before the entire coffin is filled
with sand from top-to-bottom.
He holds the flashlight just above the top of the sand pile,
allowing it to illuminate what little unoccupied area
remains.

PAUL
Linda.
Linda is in hysterics, which is evident in her speech.

LINDA
Paul? Paul is that you? Tell me
it’s you.

PAUL
It’s me, sweetie.

LINDA
Oh my God, Paul! What are they
doing to you? Please tell me
you’re okay.

PAUL
I’m…okay.

LINDA
I just saw the news. What…oh my
God, baby.
The flashlight dims. Paul shakes it, regaining a bit of its
strength.

PAUL
It’s going to be okay now.

LINDA
I missed all your calls. I left my
cell phone at home. I just found
out what was going on.

PAUL
That’s okay. It’s all okay.
They’re getting me out.

LINDA
Who?

85.

PAUL
The people. Americans. They found
out where I am and they’re on their
way to get me.

LINDA

(ELATED)
They are? Oh thank God. Oh dear
God, thank you.
The flashlight flickers. Paul hits it. It flickers some
more.

PAUL
It’s all going to be okay.

LINDA
How do you know for sure? Oh God,
please tell me you’re okay.
The flashlight continues to flicker almost like a
stroboscopic light from this point forward.

PAUL
I’m okay.

LINDA
I was so afraid I was going to lose
you.

PAUL
You’re not.
Linda breaks down in joyous tears.

LINDA
I love you so much. I love you so,
so much.

PAUL

(WELLING UP)
I love you, too.

(BEAT)
I’m sorry. I should have listened
to you.

LINDA
It doesn’t matter.

PAUL
I should have never come here. You
were right. I’m sorry.

86.

LINDA
Sweetie, I don’t care. I just want
you home. Please come home to me.

PAUL
I will.

LINDA
Swear it.

PAUL
I will. I swear I will.
Paul then receives a call on the other line. He checks to
see who’s calling. It’s Dan Brenner.

PAUL (CONT’D)
They’re here!

LINDA
The people?

PAUL
They’re calling me right now. I
have to go.

LINDA
Call me right away.

PAUL
I will. I love you.

LINDA
I love you. Swear it again.

PAUL
I swear. I have to go.
Paul clicks over to the other line, where Dan Brenner waits
to speak with him.
We hear Dan yelling to people who are with him. A great deal
of commotion and action is heard through the phone.

DAN
Move! Move! Let’s go.

PAUL
Brenner?

DAN
Paul? Paul?

87.

PAUL
It’s me.

DAN
We’re here!
Dan yells to one of the soldiers who are with him.

DAN (CONT’D)
Corporal, get your men over here!
Dan gets back on the phone with Paul

DAN (CONT’D)
He brought us right to you.

DAN (CONT’D)
(to the soldiers)
Start digging! Let’s go, let’s go!
The flashlight fades. Paul hits it, momentarily returning it
to full strength.
Meanwhile, the sand inside the coffin has almost reached the
very top. It continues to pour in from the crack, seemingly
faster than ever.
Paul struggles to keep his head above the sand, giving him
only a few inches between his face and the top of the coffin.

PAUL
You have to hurry. It’s almost
full.

DAN
Just hang in there!

PAUL
Hurry! Please!

DAN
(to the soldiers)
Dig! Dig! Dig!
Paul fights to keep his head above the sand. The flashlight
dims.

PAUL
I can’t…are you close?

DAN
We’re almost there, Paul. We’re
almost there!
(to the soldiers)

(MORE)

88.

DAN (CONT’D)
Faster!

(TO PAUL)
We’re almost there. We’re right
above you.
The level of sand grows even higher. Paul spits away falling
sand that threatens to suffocate him.

PAUL
I can’t hear you! Where are you?

DAN
We’re almost there.
A SOLDIER is heard OFF-SCREEN in the b.g. of Dan’s phone.

SOLDIER (O.S.)
There it is!

DAN
(to the soldiers)
Keep digging!!

PAUL
Hurry! Please!!!

DAN
We see the coffin! Just hang in
there!!
Paul coughs out sand. He has a mere inch left above his
head.

PAUL
Hurry! Where are you? I don’t
hear you? Please hurry!!!

The Soldier is again heard OFF-SCREEN in the b.g. Of Dan’s
phone.

SOLDIER
It’s clear!

DAN
(to the soldier)
Open it!
Nondescript noise is heard through the phone, until it comes
to an abrupt stop.

DAN

(SHOCKED)
Oh my God.

89.

PAUL
What is it?!

DAN
I’m so sorry, Paul.

PAUL
What?!!

DAN
It’s Mark White. He brought us to
Mark White. I’m —
We see the circled name of “MARK WHITE” written in capital
letters on the top of the coffin.

PAUL
You said…!

DAN

(OVERLAPPING)
…I know. I’m sorry.

PAUL
No.

DAN
I’m so sorry.

PAUL
No!! No!! NO!!!
The battery life on Paul’s phone runs out, causing it to
power down. The filament of the flashlight bulb burns out.
As it does, the sand finally consumes the coffin, filling it
completely.

We hear Paul’s muffled screams emanate through the sand,
until we no longer hear them at all.

FADE OUT.

OVER BLACK

DAN
I’m sorry, Paul. I’m so sorry.

THE END[amazonjs asin=”B008MTJFFW” locale=”JP” title=”リミット スペシャル・プライス Blu-ray”]




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