THE CROW/ザ・クロウ(1996年)

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[amazonjs asin=”B0069EO9GW” locale=”JP” title=”THE CROW / ザ・クロウ (クロウ2) DVD”]FADE IN:

EXT. LIMBO – DAY/NIGHT

A heavy mist hangs before us – endless and impenetrable. And
out of that primordial fog a CROW materializes, flying toward
the camera in slow motion.



SARAH (O.S.)

I believe there’s a place where the restless souls wander. Burdened
by the weight of their own sadness, they cannot enter Heaven…



Presently a second shape materializes – a FIGURE ON HORSEBACK.
A warrior whose baleful eyes shine behind the familiar irony
mask war paint.



SARAH (O.S.)

And so they wait, trapped between our world and the next, endlessly
searching for a way to rid themselves of their pain – in the
hopes that somehow, some day…



The figure on horseback sweeps past us, disappearing once again
into the mists of time.



SARAH (V.O.)

… they will be reunited with the ones they love.



DISSOLVE TO:



EXT. DOCS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



Present day. The Crow settles on a shipping container, tilts
its head, watching…

SUPER TITLE:

“CITY OF ANGELS – OCTOBER 29TH – LA NOCHE DE SAN LUCAS”

CLOSE ON A PAIR OF HANDS tearing open a tiny glassine envelope
filled with powder – our drug du jour – Trinity. The face of
the envelope has been stamped with an image – a cartoon imp with
a shit-eating gring giving us the thumbs-up sign.

A MAN lowers his face to the envelope, snorts up the powder.
The man discards the glassine envelope…

FOLLOWING THE ENVELOPE

as it flutters to the ground, landing “imp-side” up. Let the
rush begin.

PULL BACK TO REVEAL

Garbage-poisoned waters wreathed in fog. Although once part of
a thriving shipping industry, decades of decline have seen these
docks become a hellish dumping ground. Case in point:

A FATHER AND HIS YOUNG SON

are kneeling next to one another at the end of a pier, their
arms linked together, then tied behind their backs. DANNY CORVEN
(8) is quietly sobbing. ASHE (late 20s), tries to calm the frightened
boy.



DANNY

I’m sorry, Dad…I’m sorry… I didn’t mean to look…



ASHE

It’s okay, Danny. It’s okay…



NEMO (O.S.)

Lights…



A bright light comes on. Ashe and Danny turn their heads to avoid
the glare.



NEMO (O.S.)

…camera…



CLOSE ON

A camcorder lens as it auto-focuses, bringing Danny’s distorted
face into view via the lens’ reflection.



NEMO (O.S.)

…action.



CAMERA FINDS Ashe and Danny’s executioners, CURVE, KALI, SPIDER
MONKEY, and NEMO.

NEMO, a post-modern sleaze-hound, circles Danny and Ashe with
a camcorder. He Pats Ashe’s face.



NEMO

Make-up.



SPIDER MONKEY, lean and gangly, crouches next to Ashe, holding
a marigold in his hand.



SPIDER MONKEY

Flowers for the dead, Senor?



CAMERA POV (CLOSE ON ASHE’S EYE)

Ashe stares directly into the camera.



SPIDER MONKEY

No? Suite yourself, then.



Spider Monkey tucks the flower behind his ear. Danny is praying
now, MUMBLING a Catholic School litany.



SPIDER MONKEY

You’re wasting your breath, angelito. Nobody up there’s listening.



WHOOSH!

We cut to an extreme high-angle shot – God’s omniscient POV,
perhaps.

CURVE

leans up against his motorcycle a few yards away – big, burly,
shaved head, a ciggie hanging from his lips. He’s got a custom
paint-job on his pearl drop gas tank – a buxom blonde doing the
“wild thing” with the Grim Reaper. Curve’s also the one who just
dusted himself



CURVE

(hyped on drugs)

Let’s get this over with. Judah’s waiting.



Kali, a cold-eyed heavy-metal femme with a killer’s casual stoicism,
is methodically loading bullets into her revolver. She’s taking
her own sweet time, in defiance of Curve. There’s a tension between
them. Finally, she flicks her wrist, snaps the revolver shut.
Kali walks up to them…



DANNY

I’m scared, Dad.



ASHE

I know…



Ashe turns to his executioners, pleading with them…



ASHE

Listen to me, please. He’s just a kid. Let him go. He can’t hurt
you. He doesn’t even know who you are…



…and puts a bullet through Danny’s chest. Ashe SCREAMS.



ASHE

NO!!!



Danny’s body slumps forward, dragging Ashe down next to him.
Ashe stares into his son’s lifeless eyes.

Curve saunters over, stares down at Ashe, flicks his cigarette
butt off into the water.



CURVE

Nothing personal, sport. Guess you were just in the wrong place
at the wrong time.



BANG! BANG! BANG! Curve FIRES a gun into Ashe’s back. As Ashe
crumples…



CURVE

Dump ‘em. Let’s get this cluster-fuck on the road.



CURVE

motions to Kali and Spider Monkey. Together, the three of them
heave Ashe and Danny into the ocean.



CURVE

Bon voyage, shitheads.



EXT. OCEAN DEPTHS – NIGHT



Ashe and Danny sink down into the murky underworld, taking their
place amongst a thousand other deep-sixed dreams.

ASHE’S POV

falling further and further away from the light of the surface
world. Bit by bit, Ashe’s struggles subside. All we hear now
is an ever-slowing HEARTBEAT. Darkness begins to close in around
us, womblike, peaceful…

…AND OUT OF THE DARKNESS,

something takes shape – a CROW. Winging its way from Ashe’s dream-like
death up through watery depths into a smog-bound cityscape…



EXT. CITY OF ANGELS – NIGHT



The Crow flies over a bridge with spans the Styx – the city’s
polluted, man-made river.

THE CROW

rides the thermals above an urban sprawl riven by fires, floods,
and earthquakes. Smog hangs in the air like an army of ever-present
ghosts. We pass over a roof where someone has painted a smart-ass
welcome mat for the benefit of anyone flying overhead – “GO BACK”.
Nevertheless, we continue on.



SARAH (V.O.)

They say that time cancels pain. I don’t know about that. Eight
years ago I lost two of my best friends. Two thousand miles later
I find I’m still living in the past…



THE CROW

sweeps down into man-made caverns of pigeon-shit concrete and
grimy glass. Through the bird’s eyes we glimpse the city’s silent
HOMELESS. Automobile hulks littering the streets like insect
husks. The shifting searchlights of police helicopters…

WE PASS OVER SARAH’S ROOFTOP

The Crow circles downward…



SARAH (V.O.)

Every night when I close my eyes the dreams come. That’s how
the dead talk to us, I guess. In the dark, when our souls are
off wandering…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



The Crow lands next to an open window. It perches on the edge,
looking into the loft.



SARAH (V.O.)

I just wish I understood what they were telling me.



CROW’S POV (ANAMORPHIC)

SARAH, early 20s, lies asleep in bed. She stirs, troubled by
uneasy dreams, rolls over, opens her eyes…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT, SLEEPING AREA – NIGHT



As Sarah rises the Crow flits away like yesterday’s memory. Sarah’s
not sure whether or not she dreamed the bird. GABRIEL, the cat
Sarah inherited from Eric and Shelly, is perched on the end of
the bed.



SARAH

Hey, Gabriel…



Sarah gives the cat an obligatory behind-the-ear scratch, then
climbs from bed, making her way across the loft.

SARAH’S ARTIST LOFT

is furnished in thrift-store treasures. The loft has an earthy
warmth to it, in stark contrast to the urban decay outside –
an island amidst a sea of unrest, dominated by an arching half-circle
window through which Sarah can view the local wildlife on the
streets below.

ON SARAH’S CANVASSES

Turbulent oils reminiscent of history’s brooding symbolist painters.
Give Sarah’s childhood inspiration, the subject matter is no
real surprise.

CAMERA ISOLATES a work-in-progress. The painting depicts a woman
resembling Sarah being cradled in the arms of her pale-faced
lover, surrounded by a sea of watchful dead.

SARAH

reaches the shower, strips off her clothes. Her back and upper
arms are decorated with graceful tattoo work – a pair of black
angel wings sweeping over her shoulder blades. She’s got a ring
in her navel, another in a nipple…

In short, the skate-waif we knew back in Detroit has matured
quite a bit since that fateful Devil’s Night. Sarah shuts here
eyes, turns her face up into the spray. For a brief second we
see a flash of…



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



Ashe’s death. Plunging into the icy waters, down into darkness.
Just as suddenly we are back in…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah’s eyes snap open. She holds a hand out to the shower wall,
takes a moment to collect herself.

Troubled, Sarah climbs from the shower, shrugs on some clothes.
Among her accourterments is a necklace featuring a silver ankh,
the symbol of eternity.

As Sarah sites in front of her vanity we catch sight of the irony
mask that used to hang by Shelly’s mirror. Next to the mask is
a…

TARNISHED WEDDING RING

Once Shelly’s. There’s an inscription inside – “FOREVER”.

Sarah fingers the ring a moment, glancing at the irony mask.
Lots of memories. Lots of ghosts.

Gabriel creeps up, MEOWING forlornly.



SARAH

(WISTFULLY)

Me too.



She threads the ring onto her necklace, letting it fall next
to the ankh, then slips the silver chain over her head. Sarah
stands, pulls on a jacket, heads out.



EXT. SARAH’S LOFT, STREET – DUSK



An ill-wind kicks up trash and grit. Sarah glances down. Dozens
of the glassine imp envelopes swirl around Sarah’s feet like
confetti. One of the envelopes has stuck to her heel. As she
peels it off, she catches sight of…



A PALE FACE

in a shadowed entryway. It’s a TEENAGED GIRL (16), strung out
on drugs. The girl cowers in a narrow stairway, hugging herself,
shivering from withdrawal.

Sarah draws closer, notices some of the grinning imp drug sachets
at the girl’s feet. The girl shies away, frightened, suspicious.



SARAH

(DRYLY)

Nice place you’ve got here.



GRACE

(a muttered whisper)

No place else to go.



Sarah can’t help but recognize a part of herself in this lost
soul.



SARAH

Gotta name?



GRACE

Grace. So what?



SARAH

Listen, Grace, how does some hot coffee sound? Maybe a little
food?



GRACE

What do you want?



SARAH

Nothing. Guess you just remind me of someone I used to know.



After a moment, Grace offers a reluctant nod. Sarah helps her
from the entryway, into the warmth of the dying light. Grace
blinks, shields her eyes.

As they walk away down the street, camera rises up to include…

THE CROW

perched on a nearby rooftop, watching them.

CUT TO:

EXT. GRAY GARGOYLE TATTOO SHOP – NIGHT



the Gargoyle is an usassuming ink shop – the sole oasis of light
in an otherwise desolated block populated by derelict warehouse
buildings. Flickering neon BUZZES in the window.

Nearby is a battered road sign – “END CITY LIMITS”. Someone has
spray-painted “OF THE FUCKING WORLD” over “city limits”. In the
distance, the bridge of the River Styx rises through the mist
like a skeletal dinosaur.

SUPER TITLE:

“OCTOBER 30TH – LA NOCHE DE LA SANTA MUERTE”



INT. GRAY GARGOYLE TATTOO SHOP – NIGHT



CLOSE ON a sparking tattoo “gun”, the needle WHIRRING as it travels
over a patch of Vaseline-smeared skin.



SARAH (V.O.)

Almost finished. Doing okay?



CUSTOMER (V.O.)

Yeah, stings a little.



SARAH (V.O.)

That’s why they call me the Mistress of Pain.



PULL BACK TO REVEAL Sarah expertly guiding the needle, wearing
glasses, surgical gloves, concentrating.

Sarah’s buzz-headed CUSTOMER sits in a ratty dentist’s chair.
Sarah is finishing coloring a Japanese dragon which winds its
way over the man’s forearm. She makes another line of color then
sits back, smoothing more Vaseline over the man’s arm. She picks
up a jeweler’s loupe, makes an adjustment on her needle…

Behind Sarah we glimpse the cluttered tattoo shop – walls covered
with sheets of flash (ready-made art), bookshelves crammed with
reference works. Sarah’s partner, NOAH, a chain-smoking proto-punk
Brit, consults with a YOUNG GRUNGE COUPLE.

LATER –

Noah is closing up shop, while Sarah sterilizes some needles
in an autoclave.



NOAH

What a downer – this kid wanted me to tattoo “If you’re reading
this, you’re too close” on his bleedin’ bum!



Sarah smiles. Noah fires up a fag, flops down into a dentist
chair. The two slip into a familiar, good-natured banter.



NOAH

Christ, I’m knackered.



SARAH

Beats pushing ink in Detroit.



NOAH

That it does, Princess, that it does.

(REMEMBERING)

Oh, I bought you a little present…



Noah reaches into his shirt pocket and pulls something out. It’s
a handmade candy sugar skull with a little strip of paper glued
to the bottom – a fortune.



NOAH

They do ‘em for the Day of the Dead.

(tossing the skull to Sarah)

Nice, huh? Necrophagia, Princess. Eat the dead.



SARAH

(reading fortune)

“Life is just a dream on the way to death.” I like that.



Sarah studies the skull, then pops it in her mouth, nodding.
Noah rises, stretching.



NOAH

Want to grab a beer, then?



SARAH

No, I gotta go home. Haven’t been sleeping much lately.



NOAH

So, what’s the dirty dog’s name?



SARAH

I’ve just been having some weird dreams.

(REFLECTING)

You ever dream that you’re dying someone else’s death?



Outside we hear a MOTORCYCLE pulling up, then someone KNOCKS
on the front door.



NOAH

(calling out)

Sorry, we’re closed.



CURVE

appears outside. He POUNDS harder on the door.



CURVE

Open the fucking door!



NOAH

stands, moves to the door.



NOAH

Look, I said we’re…



BANG! Curve kicks open the door and storms in. He PUNCHES Noah
in the nose, then heads straight for Sarah.



CURVE

You think what you did to me is funny? Some kind of joke?



SARAH

What are you talking about?!



CURVE

I’m talking about the fucking tattoo you gave me! I took off
the bandages. Look…!!!



Curve rips open his shirt, revealing his chest.

CURVE’S TATTOO

It’s a crow, rendered in bold slashes of black. Or is it? Upon
closer examination the crow looks like something else – two demons
fighting. The design is a classic ambiguous figure – like the
picture of the woman in front of a vanity which can also be seen
as a skull.



SARAH

A crow…

Damn right, it’s a crow. And did I ask for a fucking bird on
my chest? Did I?!



Sarah shakes her head.



CURVE

Then what-the-fuck is it doing there?!



SARAH

I don’t know, I was just going from the design you gave me…



SMACK! Curve backhands Sarah across the face. Noah rushes forward,
blood still running from his nose.



NOAH

Stop it!



Curve pulls an automatic from his waist-band and points the gun
at Noah. Noah freezes…



CURVE

What’s it going to be, hero? Ready to kiss your faggot-ass good-bye?
I think so. I think you’re shitting yourself you’re so goddamn
ready.



Curve snaps open an imp bag of his favorite drug, snorts up the
contents. He presses the gun against Noah’s forehead.



SARAH (O.S.)

Over here, ass-hole…



As Curve turns, Sarah squeezes a bottle of tattoo ink into the
killer’s eyes, blinding him.



CURVE

Agh!!! SHIT!!!



Sarah plants one of her Doc Marten boots in Curve’s groin. He
SCREAMS, doubles over. Sarah pulls the automatic from his grasp
and trains it on him.



SARAH

Get up.



Curve cups his balls, slowly rises. His eyes are glowing with
manic intensity. A slow smile creeps across Curve’s face. He
backs away towards the front door.



CURVE

Shoulda killed me while you had the chance, sugarplum. Be seeing
you.



Curve smashes his fist into the neon sign, then ducks out thedoor.
Moments later we hear his motorcycle ROAR to life. He takes off,
ENGINE SCREAMING away into the night.

Sarah lowers the gun, takes a deep breath, looks to Noah.



SARAH

You okay?



Noah wipes his bloody nose, looks to the floor where Curve discarded
the drug sachet, shakes his head in disgust.



NOAH

Fuck me, wonder what they’ll be snorting next?



Sarah shakes her head, at wits end.



SARAH

I just can’t do this anymore… I’m so tired of this.



Noah pulls Sarah toward him, gives her a big hug.



NOAH

Easy there, luv. It’ll all work out.



EXT. GRAY GARGOYLE, – NIGHT



Sarah, still clutching Curve’s gun, hurries to her Galaxy 500
which is parked along the nearby train tracks.



INT. SARAH’S GALAXY – NIGHT



Sarah moves behind the wheel, dumps the gun on the seat, and
rests her head in her hands. As Sarah raises her head…

SARAH’S POV (THROUGH WINDSHIELD)

The Crow is perched on the hood of her car. Sarah HONKS her horn
in frustration. The Crow doesn’t move.



EXT. GRAY GARGOYLE, ALLEYWAY – NIGHT



Sarah rushes out of her car, screaming at the bird.



SARAH

Get out of here! Go!!!



Sarah FIRES a wild shot into the sky. The Crow files off into
the night. Sarah collapses against the hood of her Galaxy and
starts to cry.

CUT TO:



EXT. CITYSCAPE – NIGHT



The Crow soars away from the Gargoyle, toward the beckoning lights
of Downtown. In the distance, a flashing “JESUS SAVES” sign draws
our attention to a monolithic tower.



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



The Crow makes its way towards the decaying tower, which is crowned
by a weather-worn campanile. The campanile is a complex arabesque
of rusted iron scrollwork, like something Antonio Gaudi conjured
up from an art nouveau fever-dream.

Just as the Crow is about to reach the campanile, it banks away.
We, however, continue to rush onward, right through one of the
dark openings in the scrollwork…

INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



SCRITCH! SCRITCH! All we see is black, then some vague, shiny
reflections…

CAMERA PULLS BACK to reveal a stag beetle, imprisoned within
a box, leashed to a nail with a piece of thread. We were tight
on its shiny carapace. The beetle strains at its leash, moving
in a perpetual circle around the nail.

CAMERA MOVES UP

over the side of the box. Although mere inches in height, this
enclosure might as well be the Great Wall as far as our little
member of the Coleoptera is concerned.

AS THE CAMERA CONTINUES TO PULL BACK

we see crime lord Judah Earl’s lair in all its sepulchral glory…

Dark, filled with shadows. The decor is a cross between ruinous
palatial splendor and a SoHo industrial art installation. The
upper reaches of the campanile are laced with a spiderweb network
of steel girders.

Look close enough and you might see PEOPLE bound to the supporting
pillars, like the half-glimpsed shapes crouching at the foot
of your bed in the middle of the night.

VOICES draw our attention to an area partitioned off by chain-mail
curtains. CAMERA MOVES IN towards a break in the curtains. We
linger there for a tantalizing moment…



JUDAH (V.O.)

Talk to me, Sibyl. Tell me what you see.



SIBYL (V.O.)

I see Death returning from the veil of tears. He has your name
on his tongue.



Now we plunge in through the curtains…

The “camera” consists of a series of lenses and mirrors which
project images from the outside world onto a circular table,
offering the ultimate voyeuristic view of the crumbling cityscape.
TWO FIGURES stand with their backs to us, studying the camera’s
view. The first is…

JUDAH EARL,

A sinewy, slash-mouthed Byronic figure with a guttural voice.
Old before his time, touched by childhood visions of his own
death. The tower is Judah’s prison in more ways than one.

SIBYL, Judah’s blind oracle, waits by his side. Attractive, though
of indeterminate sex. His/her dour features are hidden beneath
a black cowl.



JUDAH

(FATALISTIC)

It’s finally beginning, isn’t it? What mask will Death wear,
can you tell me that?



SIBYL

I see the face of one of your victims.



Judah lifts his head up and we see his luminous amber eyes for
the first time. A kind of madness dances within them.



JUDAH

All my sins remembered.



CUT TO:



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah sits in bed, cigarette burning in one hand, a half-filled
wine glass in the other. She turns out her light, looks to the
window and the cityscape beyond – as if the answers were lying
out there in the steam-cloaked streets.

CUT TO:

SOMEONE’S SPEED-INDUCED POV. Performers flaunt their flesh on
a raised stage. CROWDS OF SEXUAL LIBERTINES and CUTTING EDGE
FETISHISTS writhe as one on the dance floor. Lots of rubber,
latex strap bodices, Victorian hoop skirts – it’s a modern-day
De Sade’s wet-dream.

REVERSE ANGLE

on Curve as he pushes his way upstairs and through the tangle
of flesh.

He pulls up to a bar, takes a seat alongside Kali and Spider
Monkey (who’s amusing himself with a Viewmaster). CLICK, CLICK
– we see

MONKEY’S POV – as the 3-D tableaus rotate into position

THE BARTENDER,

a barrel-chested Samoan, sets a drink down in front of Curve,
nods a greeting. Curve sits back, opens his shirt, nudges Spider
Monkey.



CURVE

Spider Monkey, what’s this tattoo look like to you?



SPIDER MONKEY

This a test?



CURVE

Come on, man, just tell me what you see.



Spider Monkey inspects Curve’s chest.



SPIDER MONKEY

A bird.



CURVE

(ANNOYED)

Think about it a minute. Don’t you see two demons?



SPIDER MONKEY

Nope. I see a bird.



CURVE

Ah, fuck you, then.



Curve lifts up his beer bottle. ECU from within the beer as the
amber liquid rushes towards us…

DISSOLVE TO:



EXT. UNDERWATER REALM – NIGHT



Air bubbles escaping, blood. Ashe is drowning again, the orbs
of his eyes bulging outwards. Over this we hear a WOMAN’S SCREAM
and…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah bolts up in bed, knocking her wine glass to the floor,
SHATTERING it. She’s choking, gasping for breath. Her heart is
hammering within her chest.



SARAH

…ohgodohgodohgod…



Suddenly she catches sight of a shadow on the wall before her
– a GIANT BIRD slowly spreading its black wings.

Sarah turns to the window. The Crow is perched just outside.



SARAH

What do you want from me?!



The Crow CAWS, then takes flight.

CLOSE ON SARAH

Calm now, realization and a sense of purpose dawning.

CUT TO:



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



We descend towards the empty docks, pushing out into the mist-shrouded
water, then down into the ocean’s murky depths.

PRESENTLY THE BODIES OF ASHE AND DANNY

come into view, caught up in a tangle of razor wire.

CLOSE ON ASHE’S FACE

Unaltered by the ravages of time. His eyelids flicker, dreaming.
A SINGLE TEAR escapes, flowing down his cheek. We push on INSIDE
HIS HEAD…

We see brief MEMORY FLASHES of he and Danny together…



INT. ASHE’S GARAGE – NIGHT/DAY (MEMORIES)



Danny stretched out on the floor of their garage, painting a
picture…

Danny and Ashe rough-housing, having a water fight…

Danny sitting in Ashe’s lap as Ashe reads aloud from a story.



ASHE

(READING)

“…midway through our life’s journey I came to myself within
a dark wood where the straight way was lost…”



Danny asleep, curled up next to his father. Ashe reaches out
and strokes Danny’s hair…



CLOSE ON ASHE’S FACE

His dead eyes suddenly open. Confusion. Pain. Fear. A stream
of bubbles rushes from his mouth, obscuring our view.

ASHE’S POV

As the bubbles clear, Danny’s face comes into focus just a few
inches from his own.

Ashe panics, jerks back. The razor-wire barbs cut into his flesh.
The more he struggles, the tighter the coils become, slashing
his hands and face, shredding his clothes. He’s caught in his
son’s embrace, the two of them thrashing about in a grotesque
underwater ballet.

CUT TO:



EXT. RIVER STYX BRIDGE – NIGHT



The headlights of Sarah’s Galaxy cut through the fog. She pulls
up just in time to see the Crow disappearing into the mist which
cloaks the bridge. Sarah follows, trying to keep up with the
bird.

CUT TO:



EXT. UNDER WATER – NIGHT



Ashe’s struggles become more and more violent. He thrashes, churning
up a cloud of bubbles. We are intercutting quickly now, between
Ashe’s turmoil and…

CUT TO:



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



Sarah reaches the pier where Ashe and Danny were executed. She
climbs from her car…

THE CROW

flies on ahead, landing atop one of the piles, staring down into
the water.

AND AS SARAH

starts toward the bird we…

CUT TO:



EXT. UNDER WATER – NIGHT



Ashe tears his hands free, clawing his body away from the barbwire,
swimming to the surface in a storm of bubbles…

FLASHBACKS

of subjective POVs. The killers walking down the jetty, marching
Ashe and Danny to their deaths and…



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL DISTRICT – NIGHT



We are beneath the jetty now in the present, looking up through
the slats as a FIGURE (Sarah?) makes its way to the water…

Camera CRANES UP from beneath the jetty to reveal Sarah standing
there in silhouette…



EXT. UNDER WATER – NIGHT



Ashe is propelled towards the surface.



EXT. DOCKS COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



Ashe suddenly bursts from the sea with his arms outstretched.
A hellish Venus on the half-shell. Gasping, full of terror and
rage. He lets loose a TORTURED HOWL.

ASHE

digs his fingers into the wood-rot pulp of the pilings and claws
his way up to the jetty. He collapses down onto the wooded slats.

ASHE

crouches before us, his face hidden from view. He reaches out
his hand, touching an unmistakable BLOOD STAIN… Danny’s blood
stain. This triggers more painful memories…



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT



Images from Ashe and Danny’s execution assault him. BANG!!! Kali
FIRING her gun. Ashe SCREAMING. Danny’s body slumping forward
like a marionette whose strings have been severed.

CUT TO:



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT (PRESENT)



Ashe lifts his head, WAILING. He’s covered from head to toe in
ocean-bottom silt. Blood from the razor-wire wounds has smeared
across his face in patterns which eerily recall the Crow make-up.
Strips of the wire still cling to his arms and chest, the barbs
buried deep in his flesh.

Reliving the violent moment is more than his mind can bear. Ashe’s
eyes roll up into his head. The world spins around him. But even
as the lights are going out, Ashe glimpses…

A DARK FIGURE

standing in front of him. It’s the last thing Ashe sees before
consciousness escapes him.

SARAH

emerges from the shadows, staring down at Ashe in wonder.

CUT TO BLACK:

SUPER TITLE:

“OCTOBER 31ST – ALL HALLOWS EVE”

INT. SARAH’S LOFT – DUSK



Ashe opens his eyes. The mud-silt which covers his face has dried
and cracked, causing it to crumble away in flakes.

Ashe is lying on a cot in the middle of the loft. We see scattered
images: candles burning, a reilgious altar overflowing with trinkets,
mirrors, mannequins, canvases, and finally…

GABRIEL

perched at the end of the bed, watching Ashe intently.

SARAH

sits on the other side of the loft in a paint-smeared work-shirt,
brush in hand. She’s studying a half-finished canvas, contemplating
her next move.

CANVAS

The eerie scene depicting a woman on her death-bed being cradled
in the arms of her ghostly lover.

Sarah tenses, feeling Ashe’s eyes burning into the back of her
neck. She turns around, sees Ashe.



ASHE

(DISORIENTED)

…who are you?



SARAH

My name’s Sarah. I had a dream about you. I saw them shoot you
and your son…

(BEAT)

…I saw you drowning.



Ashes shuts his eyes a moment, trying to recall the imagery.



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT (FLASHBACK)



BANG! BANG! BANG! Curve FIRES a gun into Ashe’s chest. Ashe crumples
and we are back at…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – DUSK



Ashe looks down at his chest, tracing his fingers over the area
where bullet holes should be. Instead, he finds a series of indented
welts.



ASHE

How did I survive?



Sarah suddenly comes to the terrible realization that Ashe does
not know he has died.



SARAH

(coming towards him)

You didn’t.



Ashe looks up at Sarah, uncomprehending.



SARAH

You’re dead.



ASHE

No…



Ashe stands, enraged. He starts toward Sarah. She backs away…



ASHE

Stop looking at me that way — stop looking — this isn’t real,
none of this is real! I’m dreaming this.



SARAH

(shaking her head, frightened)

No.



The two of the struggle a moment, Ashe pushes Sarah back. Sarah
reaches for him, trying to restrain him, trying to somehow keep
his rising terror in check… she’s not getting through to him,
he can’t be made to listen…

Finally, Sarah grabs a kitchen knife from the counter and plunges
it into Ashe’s chest.

Ashe gasps. He stares down at the incongruous sight of a knife-handle
stickout out from his sternum, then he yanks the knife back out.
No pain. No wound. A moment of shock, then…



ASHE

(looking at her, a tortured whisper)

I’m dreaming this.



Sarah tries to reach for Ashe again. He tears away from her,
flinging her back and running for the door.



EXT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Ashe stumbles from the doorway out onto the sidewalk. He rushes
blindly up the street.

CAMERA WHIP-PANS

from the fleeing Ashe to Sarah’s window. On a pillar outside,
the Crow is waiting…



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah rushes to the window, watching Ashe run. She SEES the Crow
perched below her. It takes wings, flying after Ashe…

CUT TO:



EXT. BRIDGE/GARAGE – NIGHT



Beneath the arching span of a freeway bridge is a series of corrugated
iron sheds. CAMERA FOLLOWS as Ashe, exhausted fro his run, makes
his way towards them. The Crow flies on ahead, landing next to
one of the doors, beckoning…

Ashe slides one of the RATTLING doors open…



INT. GARAGE – NIGHT



As light spills in, we catch a glimpse of the humble auto repair
garage – tools, a few wrecks-in-progress, a motorcycle…

CAMERA ISOLATES a tempera painting on the floor that’s been executed
on construction paper. A brush and a collection of paint canisters
are scattered around it, like the kind you might find in a primary
school art class. Ashe kneels next to the painting…

CLOSE ON PAINTING

An image rendered by a child’s optimistic imagination – a crude
father and sone, respectively labeled “DAD” and “ME”. A FOOTPRINT
mars the otherwise perfect memento. Ashe touches the figure labeled
“ME”, which triggers…



INT. GARAGE – NIGHT (FLASHBACK)



Ashe is working beneath a car. Danny is sprawled on the floor.
He holds up the painting in question.



DANNY

Hey, Dad…what color should I make the sun?



ASHE

Blue.



DANNY

There’s no such thing.



ASHE

(PLAYFUL)

No. Well there should be.



Just then we hear a GUNSHOT coming from outside.



DANNY

(wide eyed)

What was that?



Danny climbs to his feet, moves outside…



ASHE

Danny, wait!



Ashe slides out from under the car.



EXT. GARAGE – NIGHT (FLASHBACK)



From the back doorway, Ashe and Danny catch sight of Curve and
his crew executing someone beneath the freeway overpass. Curve’s
face is splattered with blood. He turns and sees them…



CURVE

See no evil.



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – NIGHT (FLASHBACK)



Now we’re back at the pier. The memory flashes are coming faster
and faster. Danny is sobbing once again.



DANNY’S VOICE

I’m sorry, Dad…I’m sorry…



We see Kali raise her gun. BANG! There’s the muzzle flash! Ashe
SCREAMS…



ASHE

NO!!!



CURVE’S VOICE

Nothing personal, sport.



SMASH CUT TO:



INT. GARAGE – NIGHT (PRESENT)



Ashe is tearing the place apart, sobbing, knocking over racks
of tools. Finally, he sinks to his knees, his face a mask of
tears.

Ashe spins, murderous rage in his eyes. Never startle an animal,
right?

SARAH

stands in the doorway.



ASHE

Why are you here?



SARAH

I don’t know.



She stops herself — she does know, she just didn’t want to admit
it to herself.



SARAH

I want to help you. I need to.



Sarah approaches, dropping by Ashe’s side. She sees Danny’s painting
which Ashe cradles protectively.

Ashe looks up at Sarah, his eyes full of questions.



ASHE

Everything’s so confused…

(anguished, touching the drawing)

Danny…



SARAH

He’s not here anymore.



Sarah draws closer, touched by Ashe’s inner struggle. She reaches
out to him, drawing him into her arms. He stares up at her, eyes
distant.



ASHE

There’s no moon…



Sarah touches Ashe’s face, calming him, trying to reach through
his pain.



SARAH

You’ve been given another chance, Ashe — to put the wrong things
right…



Sarah’s eyes drop to the canisters of paint which have been scattered
nearby. She reaches for the canister of white and unscrews the
lid, dipping her fingers inside…

Sarah’s re-creation of the irony war mask has an oddly ritualistic
feel to it. Yet the act is also quite erotic, for the mutual
attraction between these two battered souls is almost palpable.

As Sarah continues to speak, she begins to paint Ashe’s face
using Danny’s art supplies.

We see this transformation in bits and pieces – an eye here,
fingers dipping into the canister of white there, ruby lips being
smeared with black…

…the face that is taking shape is both similar to and different
from Eric’s. It’s the legacy of the Crow, as funneled through
Ashe’s own, unique pain.



SARAH

I believe there’ve always been people like you…



Sarah has finished. She sits back, surveying her work…



SARAH

It’s the pain that brings people back. It makes us strong again.



CLOSE ON ASHE’S FACE as he turns towards us. A slash of light
illuminates the signature black and white war-paint of the Crow
in all its glory. Ashe looks like a dark saint.

CUT TO:



EXT. FREEWAY OVERPASS – NIGHT



Ashe rockets beneath the gothic arches of the freeway overpass
on his motorcycle, hellfire burning in his eyes, his coat flapping
behind him like a fallen angel’s wings.

THE CROW

flies alongside Ashe.

THE CROW

lands on a telephone wire, studying the warehouse.

Presently we hear Ashe’s MOTORCYCLE approaching, then we see
the front wheel of his bike pulling into the foreground.

CROW’S POV (ANAMORPHIC)

Ashe turns to the Crow, slyly giving the bird the thumbs-up sign…

MATCH CUT TO…

INT. SPIDER MONKEY’S WAREHOUSE LAB – NIGHT



CA-CHUNK, CA-CHUNK, CA-CHUNK. CLOSE ON a sheet of glassine drug
bags as a hand-powered printing press comes down, mass-producing
the image of the imp giving us the thumbs up…

PULL BACK TO REVEAL the lab set up in a maze of barrells. The
walls are stained from the toxic fumes. Blacked-out windows sweat
with moisture. There are heating mantles rigged with flasks and
condensers, vacuum pumps – along with ingredients like battery
acid, paint thinner, and Epsom salts. Nearby are dozens of 50-gallon
drums containing the finished product.

Spider Monkey is working away at the printing press, pausing
to snoot some of Judah’s drug. Nearby is an old TV featuring
lurid videos of amateur bull riding – we watch as a drunken participant
gets gored.

Suddenly the power in the lab goes out, the TV screen sputters
and goes dark.



SPIDER MONKEY

Ono!



ASHE (O.S.)

‘My mother was accursed the night she bore me and I am faint
with envy of all the dead’.



Spider Monkey whirls around, startled. Ashe is sitting cross-legged
on one of the tables, grinning like a black leather Buddha.



ASHE

Tell me, Monkey. Does the corpse have a familiar face?



SPIDER MONKEY

Who the fuck are you?



ASHE

You have to learn to look beyond the mask.



Ashe jumps down from the table, walking into the light. Spider
Monkey’s eyes widen in recognition.



SPIDER MONKEY

No way, man…we put you under…you and that little snot-nosed
kid…



Ashe dips his hand into one of the 50-gallon drums. He blows
a handful of the Trinity dust at Spider Monkey. Spider Monkey,
terminally spooked, reaches back to the counter behind him, searching
for something…



ASHE

Looking for this?



Ashe holds up a pistol and puts it to his head.



ASHE

(an evil grin)

Don’t try this at home, kids.



BOOM! ASHE

puts a bullet through his own forehead. His head snaps backward
and his body collapses onto the floor. Spider Monkey creeps forward
toward Ashe’s body…

ASHE

springs from the ground, SLAMMING Spider Monkey against a table
of chemicals. Bottles SHATTER on the floor, spilling their toxic
contents.



SPIDER MONKEY

What are you?! What the fuck are you?!



Ashe leans in so he’s eye to eye with Spider Monkey.



ASHE

I wasn’t sure at first. Now I know. I’m the boiling man, Monkey.
I’m the plague of Darkness and the death of the first-born. All
your nightmares rolled into one.



Ashe removes a wooden match from his inside coat pocket. He scrapes
his thumb-nail over the head, igniting it.



SPIDER MONKEY

Whoa…this shit’s flammable! Look, look, what do you want?



ASHE

The others. Who are they?



SPIDER MONKEY

Nemo. Kali. Judah. And Curve.



ASHE

I’ll start with Nemo, then work my way up the food chain. Where
is he?



SPIDER MONKEY

Nemo? Nemo’s an old gash-hound. He hangs out at the Peep-O-Rama
on Deacon Street!



WHOOSH! Ashe blows the match out.



ASHE

Congratulations, monkey. You just bought yourself a fighting
chance.



Ashe reaches into his coat pocket, pulling out a deck of cards.
He fans them out, points…



ASHE

Pick a card, monkey.



Spider Monkey slowly extends his hand, half-expecting Ashe to
pounce on him. He pulls a card out.

Spider Monkey tosses the card down, face up. He’s got the Jack
of Hearts. he smiles tentatively. Ashe pulls out a card of his
own and flips it around – the King of Clubs.



ASHE

Lady Luck’s a bitch.



Ashe produces another wooden match.



SPIDER MONKEY

Aw, Jesus, c’mon, man!



ASHE

You’re wasting your breath, angelito. Nobody’s up there listening.



CLOSE ON MATCH

as Ashe scrapes his thumb-nail over the head…



EXT. SPIDER MONKEY’S WAREHOUSE LAB – NIGHT



An EXPLOSION rips through the front of the lab, spilling roiling
CLOUDS OF FIRE out into the street. The blackened windows SHATTER
OUTWARDS in a HAIL STORM OF GLASS… ASHE

emerges from the raging conflagration, walking right through
the flames, indifferent to the heat. A flurry of the tiny glassine
drug bags swirl around him like snow.

THE CROW

spirals down from a telephone wire, landing atop the handlebars
of Ashe’s motorcycle.

ASHE

lifts his head to the night sky, laughing. His clothes are still
smoking.

CUT TO:



INT. GRAY GARGOYLE – NIGHT



Sarah is working at one of the drawing tables. Noah is mixing
pigments.

SARAH’S SKETCH PAD

She’s working on a rendering of Ashe. She sits back…



SARAH

…and all the world will be in love with night…



SARAH STARES AT THE DRAWING.



SARAH

Do you believe in fate, Noah?



NOAH

(CONSIDERING)

Seeems to me it’s more a question of fate believing in you.



Sarah rises, reaching for her bag. As she heads for the exit,
Noah reaches for the sketch. He smoothes it out, studies the
image awhile as we…

CUT TO:



EXT. SPIDER MONKEY’S WAREHOUSE LAB – NIGHT



The demolished building is still burning strong. Curve arrives
on the scene, dismounting his motorcycle.

CLOSE ON CURVE

as he studies the shattered glass which litters the asphalt.
The fire is reflected in the fragments. With a growing sense
of dread, Curve looks from the glass to the tattoo on his chest.
He touches the Crow tattoo.

SCENE FROM ABOVE –

Now we see that the glass shards have fallen in an array that
is anything but random. The shards have taken the shape of a
large crow.

CUT TO:

THE CROW

flys past a line of palm trees which burst into flames.

CUT TO:

INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



TWO ZIPPER-MASKED WOMEN are frolicking on a bed, acting out an
elaborate bondage fantasy. Pull back to include…

A VIDEO CAMERA

recording the pornographic act for posterity. Pull further back
to include…

JUDAH

lounging on a couch a few dozen yards away, watching the women
on four video monitors, detached and twice removed from the sex
play.

CURVE

enters from out of the shadows. Judah looks up to him.



CURVE

Bad news.



JUDAH

Illuminate me.



CURVE

Someone torched the lab on Manchester. Spider Monkey’s a fucking
crispy critter.



JUDAH

Monkey I could care less about. What about our merchandise?



CURVE

A total loss.



SIBYL (O.S.)

He left a sign, didn’t he?



Judah looks to Sibyl who is standing nearby.



CURVE

(rising, uneasy)

I don’t know what you’re talking about.



SIBYL

Yes you do. You’ve seen it.



Sibyl points an accusing finger at Curve’s chest.



SIBYL

You’ve been marked.



CURVE

(even more agitated)

Jesus Christ, Judah, why the fuck to you listen to her?!



JUDAH

Because she speaks the truth.



Judah rises swiftly from his chair. He snags a handful of Curve’s
shirt and rips it open, revealing the Crow tattoo.



JUDAH

What’s this, Curve? A beauty mark?



SIBYL

Your enemy wears the mask of the Crow. The bird of ill-omen.



CLOSE ON Judah as the words sink in. He strides across the floor,
sweeping aside one of the curtains surrounding the camera obscura.



JUDAH

The Crow. Death’s avatar. I’ve heard the legends.



JUDAH

looks down at a view of the seething landscape.



JUDAH

Let him come, then.



CUT TO:

EXT. PEEP-O-RAMA PORN SHOP – NIGHT



The Peep-O-Rama occupies an old Japanese movie house. A geisha-girl
sign flashes over the marquee. Beneath that is a blinking neon
eye which opens and closes. Other signs offer enticements like
“ONLY 25 CENTS A PEEP!” and “REAL GIRLS WORKING THEIR WAY THROUGH
COLLEGE!”

As Nemo approaches, a laconic HINDU with a throat microphone
sits outside, reciting his tired schpiel.



HINDU

Tokens for the buddy booths, live girls. Tokens for the buddy
booths, live girls…



Nemo hands the Hindu a twenty.



INT. BUDDY BOOTH – NIGHT



Nemo enters a cramped booth, clutching a handful of tokens embossed
with the Peep-O-Rama eye logo on them. There’s a seat, a box
of Kleenex, a phone, and a grimy Plexiglas window with a metal
shutter over it.

Nemo starts popping tokens into the slot next to the window,
pockets the rest of them.

With a WHIR the metal shutter rises, revealing a WOMAN in a garter-belt
get-up perched on a stool. In a forgiving light, she might even
be beautiful.

An LED display starts counting down from sixty – the seconds
remaining on the metered shutter. Nemo picks up the receiver.



NEMO

You got a name?



WOMAN

Holly Daze. Do you want me, baby?



NEMO

I need to see some sugar.



Holly shrugs out of her bra, plants her scuffed-up high heels
on either side of the window, runs her hands up and down her
body, utters some tired-ass MOANS.



NEMO

Right on, sister…



Nemo unbuckles his belt, drops his drawers…



HOLLY

(eyeing his endowment)

Mmmm. Is that for me?



NEMO

Yeah, we’re gonna celebrate Christmas a little early this year.



HOLLY

Keep doing that, honey, you’ll go blind.



CUT TO:



INT. PEEP-O-RAMA BUDDY BOOTH – NIGHT



Holly is still MOANING. Over on the LED display, Nemo’s time
has just about expired.



HOLLY

Time’s almost up, lover. Better hurry up with those tokens.



NEMO

Shitfire…



Nemo fumbles with his pants, scoops out some more tokens…

Too late, the shutter is already closing. Nemo feeds some more
tokens into the slot. Nothing happens. Nemo punches the LED display.



NEMO

Come on, fucker!



The shutter starts rattling up again, only this time…

ASHE

is standing on the other side of the Plexiglas. His mouth splits
into an evil grin.



ASHE

“Do you want me, baby?”



Nemo’s eyes just about pop from his skull.



NEMO

You.



ASHE

Me.



CRASH! Ashe slams his fists through the Plexiglas window, reaching
for Nemo’s throat.



INT. PEEP-O-RAMA, HALLWAY – NIGHT



Nemo comes flying out the booth door. He struggles to rise. A
CHORUS OF ORGASMIC SIGHS and cheesy SURF MUSIC drifts out from
the other booths.



ZEKE

(o.s.)

Hey, mime boy.



AT THE FRONT COUNTER.

ZEKE, the Peep-O-Rama’s corpulent manager, is cradling a sawed-off
shotgun. BOOM! He blows a blast into Ashe’s chest!

Ashe starts toward Zeke, unfazed. Zeke moves to fire again…

Ashe snatches the shotgun from the fat man’s grasp, smashing
him in the face with the butt-end. Zeke falls back into a video
display, sending an avalanche of porno tapes raining down on
top of him.

Seizing the moment, Nemo rushes for the exit…

Ashe spins, pumps the shotgun, blows out one of Nemo’s kneecaps.
Nemo collapses on the floor, wailing like a child. Ashe strides
over to him.



ASHE

One crow sorrow…



He HEAVES Nemo through a glass display booth filled with sex
toys. Ashe punctuates each line of the nursery rhyme with a new
assault on Nemo.



ASHE

…two crows joy…



Nemo starts dragging his broken body across the floor. He finds
himself face to face with an anatomically-correct blow-up sex
doll – the kind with a built-in pre-recorded memory chip.



DOLL

Ooh, oh baby, I like it like that. You’re so good. You’re so
good…



ASHE

Three crows a letter, four crows a boy…



Ashe HEAVES Nemo back the other way, sending him SMASHING into
the front counter. Peep-O-Rama tokens go flying, bouncing and
spinning every which way…

CLOSE ON A SPINNING TOKEN

On one side of the coin the eye is open, on the other it’s closed
– this creates the illusion of the eye blinking.



ASHE

Five crows silver, six crows gold…



Nemo utters a half-sob and rolls over, feebly wiping away the
blood which is clouding his eyes.



ASHE

Seven crows a secret never to be told.



NEMO

…please, please just stop…



Ashe pries open Nemo’s eyes with his fingers.



ASHE

You killed my son, Nemo. You took away the only piece of light
left in my soul.



NEMO

We had to! Judah’s orders. Never leave any witnesses! We didn’t
have a choice!



ASHE

We always have a choice.



Ashe plunges his fingers into Nemo’s eyes – killing him off-camera.
He lifts up his now blood-covered hands and turns…

Just then, Holly Daze bursts out into the hall. She sees Ashe
and YELPS, certain her number’s up. Ashe grabs her by the wrist,
spinning her around.



HOLLY DAZE

(CRINGING)

…no…



Ashe touches her face and sees a split-second FLASH of…

HOLLY DAZE DANCING

Jump-cut bump and grind, CAT-CALLS, LAUGHTER, the distorted faces
of men leering with their hungry eyes, tongues and sweaty palms
and heavy breath and I wanna be your fucking dog, baby, and…

BANG! ASHE

shuts his eyes, reeling…

Ashe looks up at Holly – one victim to another. His eyes burn
a laser beam into her soul.



ASHE

If you value what you’ve lost, you’ll walk away from this place
and never look back.



Holly Daze nods with conviction. Ashe releases her. She bolts
like a rabbit flushed from cover.

CUT TO:



EXT. PEEP-O-RAMA – NIGHT



Curve ROARS UP on his motorcycle, followed by Kali and a car-load
of ENFORCERS. The team grab their weapons, head for the porno
shop…



KALI

Inside!



Kali leads the crew of killers into the porno shop. But Curve
stops, sensing something. He spins around…

THE CROW

is sitting atop one of the cars, watching him.



INT. PEEP-O-RAMA, BACK CORRIDOR – NIGHT



Kali and Curve move down the dark corridor. The PORN ACTRESS
VOICES from the vid-booths continue their ORGIASTIC MOANS, but
one voice in particular stand out.



KALI

Nemo?



DOLL’S VOICE

Ooh, oh baby, you’re so good…



CAMERA FINDS NEMO’S BODY

at the end of the corridor, lounging in the arms of the sex doll
which is still repeating its tinny refrain. Nemo’s neck has been
snapped and his head hangs at an awkward angle.



DOLL

…oh! Oh yea, that’s the spot. Do me, baby. Do me.



There’s a folded piece of paper shoved into Nemo’s mouth. Curve
pries it out. The paper unfolds like one of those snowflake cut-outs
we used to make in grade school – only this cut-out is of a crow.

Written across the paper crow are the following words:

” I KNOW WHY JESUS WEPT”



A phone on the wall is RINGING. RINGING and RINGING. Finally,
Curve leans in, snatches up he receiver…



ASHE’S VOICE

Do you know what they call a gathering of crows, Curve?



At the sound of Ashe’s voice, Curve’s eyes widen with fear.



ASHE’S VOICE

A murder. A murder of crows. Think about it.



CLICK! The line goes dead. Furious, Curve tears the phone from
the wall, HEAVING it across the porno shop.

CUT TO:


EXT. STREET/CHURCH – NIGHT

Ashe exits a phone booth, leaving the receiver dangling. A DOG
BARKS nearby, followed by the sound of CHILDREN LAUGHING. Ashe
turns and sees…

A GROUP OF CHILDREN running away, giggling, their FOOTSTEPS receding
into the night.

A BLACK DOG trots toward Ashe. The children have tied a plastic
skull mask to the dog’s head. The skull dog trots up the street
towards…

A SMALL, INNER-CITY LATINO CHURCH

sandwiched between two derelict buildings. The doors are open
– there’s a path of marigold petals leading up the front steps.
The skull dog trots up the steps and enters.



INT. CHURCH – NIGHT



Ashe moves into the sanctuary. He watches from the rear, entranced.
PEOPLE are scattered amongst the pews.

At the altar is a lavish offrenda – an offering of food and drink
for the wandering dead decorated with sugar skulls and floral
garlands. Amidst the decorations are photos of departed loved
ones. There are tiers of candles surrounding these, scores of
them.

An ELDERLY PRIEST emerges from a confessional, looking to Ashe
with a raised eyebrow…”Next?”.



PRIEST

Can I help you?



ASHE

I’m sorry, Father, I was just watching…



PRIEST

Our doors are open.



The Priest moves to a candelabra and lights some tapers.



ASHE

What is this for?



PRIEST

Dias de los Muertos, the Days of the Dead. We light the candles
for our loved ones – so that they might find their way back to
earth and share in the pleasures of the living.



Ashe watches an OLD WOMAN place a toy motorcycle in front of
a picture of a child.



PRIEST

Tomorrow night we will celebrate. The people will dance, sing…

(indicating Ashe’s makeup)

…many will wear masks.



ASHE

Why?



PRIEST

Some spirits linger here too long. They become confused, mistaking
themselves for the living. They have to be frightened away.



The priest nods to Ashe and moves down the aisle to the next
candelabra.

A LITTLE BOY

is watching Ashe from one of the back pews. He clutches a striped
ball. He drops it.

The boy rolls the ball across the floor to Ashe. Ashe kneels
and catches it, rolling it back. The boy smiles.



BOY

Santa Muerte.



Unnerved, Ashe retreats out of the sanctuarly, letting the night’s
shadows swallow him up once more.

CUT TO:



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah sits by her paintings. Gabriel suddenly stands, arching
his back, hair standing on end.

ASHE

appears on the ledge of the broken window, crouching there like
a gargoyle in silhouette.



SARAH

(hesitant, but relieved)

You came back…



ASHE

Heaven wouldn’t have me and Hell was afraid I’d take the place
over.



Ashe drops into the loft.



ASHE

I needed to see you again.



Ashe moves towards Sarah’s paintings, pausing to study the one
of the woman being cradled in the arms of her ghostly lover.
He touches the woman’s face.



ASHE

She looks like you.



After a long moment, Sarah responds.



SARAH

I paint what I see.



Ashe approaches Sarah. He points to the wedding ring which hands
from her neck.



ASHE

Were you married?



SARAH

It belonged to a friend.



ASHE

Where are they now?



SARAH

A better place.



Sarah turns the ring around her finger, fidgeting with it.



SARAH

What about you?



ASHE

Danny’s mother left after he was born. She was a drug addict.



SARAH

(NODDING)

I lost my mother the same way.



ASHE

Small world.



Sarah reaches for a cigarette and lights up, taking a long drag.
Ashe notices a number of scars on her forearm, possibly some
track marks…

Sarah catches him looking, self-consciously pulls her hand back.



SARAH

(meeting his gaze)

I left Detroit because I wanted to put the past behind me.

(STRUGGLING)

The problem is, I know how it ends. Blood. Violence. I don’t
want a part of it anymore.



Gabriel approaches Ashe. He crouches, runs his fingers along
the cat’s back.



ASHE

What happens to me when I finish what I’m supposed to do here?



SARAH

You go back.



ASHE

What if I don’t want to go back?



Sarah looks away.



SARAH

Then you’re damned

INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



CLOSE ON A VIDEO MONITOR. We’re watching the tape documenting
Ashe’s death. We see Ashe’s face sinking beneath the water’s
surface. The image freezes.



CURVE (O.S.)

It was him. It was that son of a bitch we dumped off the pier.
I know it.



PULL BACK TO REVEAL Judah, Curve, and Kali gathered around the
monitor. Sibyl waits nearby. Curve is snapping open an envelope
of Trinity, sniffing up the contents.



JUDAH

I thought you killed him.



CURVE

I shot him in the head!



KALI

He’s a ghost.



CURVE

No such thing as ghosts.



KALI

(POINTEDLY)

Then who killed Spider Monkey and Nemo?



Curve starts pacing, growing more apprehensive.



CURVE

All I know is, he’s fucking with us. The Crow’s his symbol, right?
That means I’m marked. It means he’s coming for me now!



KALI

I thought you said you didn’t believe?



Curve turns on Kali, furious, ready to strike her. In a flash,
Kali has one of her katanas out.

Curve backs away, bristling.



CURVE

Look, you want to tell yourselves some bullshit fairytales, that’s
your business. But i’m not gonna sit here with a fucking target
on my chest. I’m going to take this motherfucker out!



SIBYL

You won’t stop him with bullets or knives. He doesn’t feel pain.
He doesn’t bleed. Don’t you see? His soul has crossed over. He’s
come back from the other side.



Curve looks like he’s going to be sick from fear. But Kali and
Judah are listening intently.l



JUDAH

So how do you stop a man who’s already dead?



SIBYL

Can you look destiny in the eye without flinching?



Judah studies Sibyl’s shadowed face.



JUDAH

You tell me.



A stare-down ensues. Judah doesn’t avert his gaze.



SIBYL

The Crow is the source of his power – his link between this world
and the next. Sever that link and he’s as vulnerable as the next
man.



CUT TO:

INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Ashe pushes through a curtain, turns towards Sarah’s vanity —
SEES the knick-knacks and mementos gathered there, then SEES
the ceramic irony mask which hangs above. Ashe approaches, reaching
a hand out to trace its features.

At the bottom of the mirror, a FADED POSTCARD has been tucked
between the frame and the glass. Ashe pulls it free, studying
it…

CLOSE ON POSTCARD

A carnival midway set on the beach, people strolling along a
boardwalk, golden sand and blue skies. WORDS at the top of the
picture read: “WISH YOU WERE HERE”.



ASHE

I’ve been here.



Ashe stares at the picture, entranced, caught up in a moment
of wistful nostalgia for the life he’s lost.



ASHE

I took Danny last summer. We went up on the bike, rode all the
way up the coast…

(BEAT)

It was cold up there. I remember we could see each other’s breath.



Ashe catches himself, setting the postcard down. He turns his
back to Sarah, hiding his face form her, overcome by emotion.

Sarah stands, drawing near. She reaches out to console him, touching
his shoulder. She alone, among all the souls of the world, understands
the isolation that is consuming Ashe.



SARAH

Look at me.



But Ashe won’t.



SARAH

Ashe. Look at me.



Ashe finally turns around, a sense of deep and profound loss
in his eyes…

Something unspoken passes between them. Sarah leans into Ashe,
tentative, eyes searching. It’s one of those fragile moments
where things could go either way. And then…



ASHE

(pulling back)

No…

(turning away)

We can’t do this…



The spell has been broken. Ashe starts away from her.



ASHE

I have to finish what I started. I have to find the others.



SARAH

I know.



Ashe moves to the door, hesitant, a terrible sense of longing
gnawing at his heart.



SARAH

I wish I’d met you before.



Ashe nods, then turns to leave. There’s nothing else to say.



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah watches from her window as Ashe strides to his motorcycle.
She raises her hand up, as if to say good-bye.



EXT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



As Ashe climbs aboard his bike, he catches sight of himself in
the…

DISPLAY WINDOW OF A BAKERY

Within the bakery are mountains of sugar skulls, candy skeletons,
and pan de muerte (bread of the dead). Ashe’s reflection is superimposed
over this morbid tableau.

Ashe fires up the bike’s engine. He takes off down the street…

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



Judah moves back to the stag beetle, watching its Sisyphean efforts.
SCRITCH! SCRITCH!



JUDAH

So the Crow is Ashe’s familiar…

(to Sibyl)

Can his power be taken?



SIBYL

The bird is the key, the life-force that flows within it…



JUDAH

(UNDERSTANDING)

The blood of the Crow.



Judah whirls around, his eyes glowing with a manic fervor.



JUDAH

(to Curve)

The tattoo on your chest, who gave it to you?



CURVE

Some bitch down at the Gargoyle, but what’s that got to do with…



Judah grips Curve’s shoulders tightly, shaking him.



JUDAH

Everything, you idiot! Find her. If she gave you his mark, then
she’s connected to him in some way. She can lead us to him.



CUT TO:



EXT. DOCKS, COMMERCIAL WATERFRONT – DAWN



Ashe stands at the end of the pier, staring down into the silent
waters where his natural life ended. He takes something from
his coat…

THE PAINTING

which Danny had been working on. It’s got bullet holes in it
now.

Ashe throws his arms back and lifts his face to the heavens,
SCREAMING, cursing his fate.

ON ASHE,

as seen from afar. A tiny figure dwarfed by the endless expanse
of ocean and sky.

CUT TO:



INT. GRAY GARGOYLE TATTOO SHOP – MOMENTS LATER



SUPER TITLE:

“NOVEMBER 1ST – NOCHE DE LOS MUERTOS”

Curve and Kali have duct-taped Noah to one of the dentist chairs
– even his mouth and nose have been sealed shut. Curve lets Noah
thrash a moment, then violently rips the tape from Noah’s face.



NOAH

(frightened, gasping)

Look, what do you people want?



CURVE

A house in the country, a dog, a wife and two kids…

(GRINS)

…your fucking head stapled to my saddlebags.



KALI

We’re looking for Sarah. Where is she, Noah?



NOAH

I’m not going to tell you that…



KALI

Oh, but I think you are…



Kali sites astride Noah. She reaches for one of the tattoo machines.
She motions to Curve, who hits the treadlight foot switch. Noah
eyes the sparking tattoo machine with rising apprehension as
Kali moves it towards his face.

CLOSE ON THE NEEDLE

a vibrating blur just a few centimeters from Noah’s blinking
eye. Noah tries to shut his eyes. Kali forces an eye open with
the thumb and forefinger of her other hand.

BACK TO SCENE



KALI

Last chance, “love”.



NOAH

(DEFIANT)

Get bent, you dried-up bitch.



From behind, we see Kali lower the vibrating needle towards Noah’s
eye. His SHRILL SCREAMS split the night as we…

CUT TO:



EXT. GRAY GARGOYLE TATTOO SHOP – NIGHT



Curve and Kali are leaving the shop. Suddenly Curve clutches
at his chest, wincing in pain. He opens his coat, looks down
at his chest…

THE CROW TATTOO

is dripping blood from its beak and talons.

Curve staggers back, horrified. Kali is watching him.



CURVE

No…no…



KALI

What is it?



But Curve isn’t listening. He leaps onto his motorcycle and hits
the ignition. He takes off with a ROAR…



KALI

Curve!



It’s no good. Curve is long gone.

CUT TO:

NOTE: The following scene appears here in the script, but in
the film it appears in Chapter 12.



INT. SECOND COMING FETISH CLUB – NIGHT



Curve makes his way to the bar. He rips open a glassine bag of
Trinity and vacuum snorts it. His eyes roll up in his head as
the chemicals flow. Another wave of pain washes over him. Curve
claws at his chest, falls against the bar…



CURVE

…goawaygoawaygoawaygoaway…



TIME SLOWS TO A CRAWL

The MUSIC fades to a muted echo of distant WAR DRUMS. As a feeling
of inexorable doom settles over him, Curve lifts his head and
sees…

ASHE

reflected in the bar mirror, materializing out of the narcotic
haze. He’s wading through the ocean of bodies. In his face paint
and black leather Ashe looks like he’s just another part of the
twisted scene. people are stroking him, brushing up against him
– like they can leech off some of his morbid angel charisma.

Ashe lifts his hand – he’s clutching House o’ Peep Zeke’s sawed-off
shotgun.

Curve DIVES to the floor as Ashe’s shotgun blast shatters the
bar mirror, taking out his own reflection. Curve rolls, climbs
to his feet, starts running…

The Samoan bartender grabs a semi-auto pistol, opens up on Ashe.
Now some of the other ARMED DOORMEN are FIRING too…

…but Ashe keeps on coming, trudging through the HAIL OF GUNFIRE.
Bullets are EXPLODING over his body at an insane rate. Ashe is
a human roman candle. Nothing is going to stop him from reaching
Curve, nothing.

The Samoan stops firing. He takes one look at Ashe, who’s still
coming at them…

Fuck this. He turns tail and run.



EXT. SECOND COMING FETISH CLUB – NIGHT



Curve comes storming out the back door like a bat out of Hell.
He takes the rear stairs three at a time, spilling into a couple
of back-alley JUNKIES. He stumbles into a pile of garbage, scatters
some rats…

Curve makes for his bike, which is parked nearby. He fumbles
with the key, hits the starter switch…

Ashe comes flying off from a second story fire escape, landing
atop a car roof on all fours, popping the windows.



ASHE

Time’s up, Curve.



CURVE

Fuck you, bird-dick!



Curve jerks his bike towards the street and guns it…



EXT. STREET – NIGHT



Curve zooms by a bridal shop-sees his own reflection in the window.



EXT. STREET – NIGHT



Curve SHRIEKS, turns into the Alley, tachometer red-lining. He
glances behind him…The crow flies by.

THE CROW

plunges down from the night sky, wings flapping madly, quickly
gaining on Curve like the breath of death.



EXT. CITY STREETS – NIGHT



Ashe, in a dream-like state, races along.



EXT. OVERPASS – NIGHT



Curve leans in low, trying to urge his bike on by will-power
alone. He races by a warehouse, veering off the road onto the
railroad tracks.

UP ABOVE,

Ashe appears on the overpass, riding on his own motorcycle, matching
Curve’s speed.

THE CROW

soars higher for a bird’s eye view, tracking Curve’s progress
as it sweeps past chimneys, swerves around billboards, ducks
under laundry lines…

ON ASHE

as he ROCKETS along the overpass. The Crow lands on his shoulder.
Ahead is a break in the guard rail. Ashe cuts sharply to the
right, taking the motorcycle airborne through the break in the
rail and…

ASHE

…lands on the surface street some thirty feet below! Ashe is
now just behind Curve.

CUT TO:



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Sarah is back at work on the painting of the woman being cradled
by her lover. Gabriel, who’s lounging nearby, suddenly looks
up and HISSES.

UP ABOVE THEM

the Crow lands on the skylight, staring down at Sarah, watching…

There’s a KNOCK at her door. Sarah approaches, looks through
the peephole…



SARAH

Who is it?



SARAH’S POV (THROUGH FISH-EYE PEEPHOLE)

Kali stands there, cradling an automatic. She’s flanked by TWO
IDENTICAL TWIN THUGS. Kali FIRES into the lock…



EXT. TUNNEL MOUTH – NIGHT



The chase continues. Curve approaches the bridge doing well past
ninety. Abruptly, he cuts down a roadway which parallels the
river. There’s a chain-link running across the mouth of the tunnel.

Up ahead is a hole in the fence leading down to a tunnel spillway.
Curve guides his bike through the hole…



INT. TUNNEL – NIGHT



Curve speeds into the dark tunnel, splashing through puddles
of water, whipping past graffiti. As he nears the mouth at the
other end, Curve brakes hard, TIRES SQUEALING, almost going down…

CURVE’S POV

We are now beneath the bridge. It’s a stone-cold dead-end. The
roadway slopes sharply downward, spilling out into the concrete
river bed which is filled to capacity with rushing flood waters.

BACK TO SCENE

We hear the ROAR of an approaching motorcycle, then an engine
cutting out. Curve looks back the way he came…

AT THE OPPOSITE END OF THE TUNNEL

Ashe’s siilhouette steps into view. He’s on foot now, clutching
the sawed-off shotgun. He lets loose a LAUGH which chills Curve
to the bone.



ASHE

“I have a rendezvous with Death, on some scarred slope of battered
hill…”



Ashe starts into the tunnel. His WET FOOTSTEPS echo off the weeping
walls…



ASHE

“God knows, ‘twere better to be deep where love throbs out in
blissful sleep, pulse nigh to pulse and breath to breath…”



As Ashe draws closer, his death-like face emerges from the gloom
– a ghastly visage floating in the ether…



ASHE

“But I have a rendezvous with Death. And I to my pledged word
am true…”



Ashe stops some twenty feet away, grinning like the Cheshire
Cat.



ASHE

“I shall not fail that rendezvous.”



Silence like knives. Ashe and Curve facing one another. Curve
is tense, dry-mouthed…



CURVE

You think i’m afraid of you, you fucking freak?! YOU THINK I’M
AFRAID?!!



Curve SCREAMS and guns his cycle forward, rolling the throttle
all the way open – a kamikaze run aimed straight at Ashe.

Ashe stands his groupd, lifts the shotgun, FIRST at Curve’s customized
teardrop gas tank. There’s the woman doing the wild thing with
Death and…

BOOM! CURVE’S MOTORCYCLE

disintegrates beneath him, breaking apart into a RUSHING COMET
OF FLAMING WRECKAGE. Shrapnel skids along the tunnel walls, SPEWING
SPARKS.

CURVE

lies on the garbage-strewn tunnel floor in a spreading pool of
blood – burnt, battered, a barb of steel sticking up from his
chest. Still, Curve has one glorious, giddy moment where he thinks
he’s actually succeeded in defeeating Ashe, then…

CURVE’S POV

as Ashe steps through the gasoline flames.

Curve’s elation vaporizes.



ASHE

Can you hear me, Curve?



Curve offers a weak nod.



ASHE

You’re going to die now.



Curve tries to speak, blood spills from his mouth. Ashe places
a finger to his lips.

Ashe drops down, kneeling over Curve’s chest.



ASHE

People used to put coins in the mouths of the dead. Do you know
why? So they could pay the ferryman to take them across the river
Styx.

(reaching to Curve’s ear)

What’s this?



In a parody of a stage magician, Ashe retrieves one of the Peep-O-Rama
tokens from Curve’s ear. The embossed eye logo flashes.



ASHE

Open your mouth, Curve.



Curve,s eyes are wide, filled with terror. He MOANS.



ASHE

Shhh. It’s not so bad. Trust me. I’ve been there.



Curve slowly opens his mouth. Tears run from his eyes. Ashe places
the coin on Curve’s tongue, like a priest administering a Holy
wafer.

Ashe stands, grabs Curve by the coat collar. He pulls him back
towards the end of the tunnel…



EXT. TUNNEL MOUTH/RIVER – NIGHT



Ashe drags Curve down the sloping end of the spillway to the
waters edge.



ASHE

I want to thank you for showing me my pain, Curve. You made me
what I am.



ON ASHE

As he releases Curve, letting the current carry him away. Ashe
stands, tracking Curve’s progress.

ON CURVE

as he floats downstream, limbs outstretched, consciousness fading
fast.

CURVE’S POV

GHOSTLY FACES stare down at him from the girders – people who
have made their home in the underbelly of the bridge which stretches
overhead.

A WOMAN lets loose a cloud of marigold petals. They flutter down
around Curve, swirling in the currents.

PULL BACK TO REVEAL

the petals have clustered around Curve’s body in the shape of
a Crow. Curve continues to float downstream towards an estuary,
borne away on the wings of the bird.

END OF MOVED SCENE



INT. TUNNEL – NIGHT



Ashe starts back into the tunnel. He pauses a moment, kneeling
down, lowering his head. Whether out of respect for the dead
or his own condition, we’ll never know.

After a minute, Ashe lifts his head again and stands. It’s time
to see his mission through to the end.

CUT TO:



INT. TUNNEL – NIGHT



Ashe is heading back from the river when he’s struck by…

A VISION OF THE CROW’S POV OF SARAH

ASHE

is seeing what the crow is witnessing – Sarah in danger.



ASHE

Sarah!



Ashe starts to run, back toward his bike…

CUT TO:

EXT. CITY STREETS – NIGHT



Ashe is on the motorcycle, racing through the streets. He takes
a corner on a skid, zipping past the Gray Gargoyle and the neighboring
train tracks.

CUT TO:



EXT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Ashe pulls up on the motorcycle, SCREECHING to a stop. He leaps
from the bike, rushing into Sarah’s building.



INT. SARAH’S LOFT – NIGHT



Ashe stumbles through the doorway into the loft…

The loft has been trashed. Furniture turned over, paintings slashed,
the ceramic irony mask smashed into pieces…



ASHE

(alarmed, desperately looking for her)

Sarah?!



KALI (O.S.)

Sarah’s gone, ghost man.



Ashe whirls around

KALI

who had been standing still amidst the shadows, now moves from
behind Sarah’s paintings.



ASHE

Where is she?



KALI

Judah’s tower. He’s waiting for you there.



As Kali steps closer we see that she’s dressed for war — a katana
secured in a black scabbard, twin daggers on each hip, a bandoleer
of throwing stars.



ASHE

You took my son’s life.



KALI

(GASPING)

Some people are born victims.



ASHE

It takes two to make a murder.



Kali unsheathes her katana. The blade edge catches the streetlight’s
glare coming in from the window.



KALI

Shall we dance?



Kali comes at Ashe blindingly fast. She spins and cartwheels
end over end, somersaulting. As she lands, Kali shifts into Ginsu-mode,
her blade a whirling blur…

Ashe ducks under the blade, trapping Kali’s sword arm. He twists
his hands, SNAPPING her arm…

As Kali CRIES OUT, Ashe pivots, THROWING HER towards the half-moon
window looking out over the street…

CUT TO:



INT. CAMPANILE – JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Sarah’s eyelids flutter open with a start. She’s waking on the
heels of a dream.

PULL BACK to reveal Sarah curled up on the cold tile floor, a
number of candles burning nearby. Sarah sits up, disoriented.
Upon moving her arm she finds that it’s been shackled to one
of the pillars via a long chain.

Sarah wastes a few moments tugging at her tether, trying to snap
one of the links, but it’s no good.

Frustrated, Sarah looks around, trying to get her bearings…

SIBYL

is standing a few yards away, cloaked in darkness, head bowed.
Sarah didn’t notice her at first.



SARAH

Where am I?



SIBYL

The Tower. Everyone finds their way here eventually.



Sarah rises from the floor, a little unsteady. She moves towards
Sibyl, reaches out to touch her shoulder. The prophetess abruptly
lifts her head, causing her hood to fall back. Sarah takes a
step back, GASPING…

SIBYL’S EMPTY EYE SOCKETS

have been sewn shut with black thread.



SARAH

My God. What happened to you…?



JUDAH (O.S.)

Fate happened to her.



Sarah spins…

JUDAH

emerges from the gloom, almost as if he were materializing from
the shadows themselves.



JUDAH

Sibyl’s been cursed with the gift of prophecy. She sees things
that are fated to happen…

(BEAT)

She cut her eyes out with a carving knife because she wanted
to make the visions stop…



Judah brushes the back of his hand affectionately against Sibyl’s
cheek.



JUDAH

…but that only made the visions stronger, didn’t it, dear?



Sibyl turns her head away from Judah, shunning his caress.



SIBYL

I’ve learned to live with my affliction.



JUDAH

Don’t we all.



Sarah backs away from Judah, wary.



SARAH

Judah Earl.



JUDAH

My reputation precedes me.



SARAH

(DISGUSTED)

I’ve seen what your drugs have done to this city.



JUDAH

(SHRUGGING)

I saw a need, I exploited it. It’s all economics, Sarah. Supply
and demand.



SARAH

Why did you bring me here?



JUDAH

I’m glad you asked that, Sarah. You’ve got a very important part
to play in this little drama of ours. You see, I intend to capture
the Crow…



Judah draws near, devouring Sarah with his hungry eyes. USING
A JAGGED FINGERNAIL, HE INCISES A CROSS INTO HER FOREHEAD.



JUDAH (O.S.)

… and you, my dear, are the birdseed.



CUT TO:



EXT. SARAH’S LOFT/ALLEY – NIGHT



Kali comes CRASHING through the window, falling down to the sidewalk
below. She lands atop a wrecked car, snapping her back in two…

CLOSE ON KALI

lies on the ground, her limbs twisted at awkward angles. She
MOANS, somehow still alive.

KALI’S POV

as Ashe approaches. The Crow flits in from off-screen, landing
on his shoulder. Watching Kali with it’s curious golden eyes.

As Ashe draws near, Kali tries to rise. The most she can do is
lift her head.



KALI

(GASPING)

I…can’t…move…



Ashe stares at her, dispassionate.



KALI

Kill…me, then…finish…it…



Ashe simply shakes his head.



KALI

You…have to.



ASHE

My job is to send you to hell. You’re in it.



Kali stares at Ashe in disbelief, her stoic warrior’s mien quickly
evaporating.



KALI

There’s no…honor in this. It’s my…death. I’ve won it..



Ashe turns and starts away.



ASHE

Me, too.



KALI

Wait! Where are you going?! Wait! You can’t…do this! You can’t
do this!!!



But Ashe doesn’t turn back. He leaves Kali in the cold, wet street,
ignoring her pathetic laments.

Ashe continues on to the end of the alley…

THE CROW

lands on Ashe’s outstretched hand.

The Crow takes wing, lifting its way up into the night.

Ashe fires up the motorcycle’s engine, tearing away from Sarah’s
apartment in a cloud of smoke.

CUT TO:

INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



The scene resumes. Sarah stares at Judah, horrified.



SARAH

Why are you doing this?



JUDAH

Have you ever read Dante’s Inferno? It says that the only true
path through Hell lies at its center. If you want to escape it
— you have to go further in.



Judah lowers himself into a chair.



JUDAH

When I was a boy I fell through the ice of a lake. I remember
seeing the sky through the ice above me, close enough to touch.
The world grew cold around me. Dark. Eventually my heart stopped
beating. And in that moment, I died.



Judah sweeps his hand through one of the candle flames, then
pinches the flame out of existence. A tiny wisp of smoke trails
up into shadow.

Judah settles back in his chair, overcome by a memory that for
him has never lost its vibrancy.



JUDAH

A half-hour later I awoke on an operating table. I had returned
to the world of flesh and bone — But I brought a knowledge back
with me…

(tapping his forehead)

Forbidden knowledge.



Judah leans in close to Sarah, his lambent eyes glowing like
hot coals. As Judah continues, Sarah fingers the ankh which hangs
from her neck.



JUDAH

I’ve been living on borrowed time ever since. I’ve always known
Death would be coming for me.

(BEAT)

I see now that your friend is the one I’ve been waiting for.



SARAH

You can’t stop him.



JUDAH

You’re wrong, Sarah.

(RISING)

There is a way to defeat Death… and that’s to trade places
with him.



Sibyl turns her head towards the east.



SIBYL

The Crow is coming.



Judah looks back at Sarah.

CUT TO:



EXT. CITY STREETS – NIGHT



Ashe comes screaming over a hill on his motorcycle, the image
of Judah’s face burned into his mind…

A HORSE-DRAWN CARRIAGE

piloted by a man in a devil mask suddenly looms up in front of
Ashe. The street ahead has been cordoned off with flashing wooden
barricades. There’s some kind of street fiesta going on…

Ashe swerves, BRAKING HARD to avoid hitting the carriage. Ashe’s
bike slips out from under him and Ashe goes CRASHING into the
barricades. But even as the carriage’s skull-faced costumed occupants
rush up to help him…

… Ashe is up and running, leaping over the barricades into
the crowd beyond…

CUT TO:



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER – JESUS SAVES SIGN – NIGHT



The Crow lands atop the buzzing “JESUS SAVES” sign. It cocks
its head, as if considering its next move, then flies toward
the campanile.



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



The Crow enters through one of the openings in the grillework,
settling on one of the rafters.

CROW’S POV

Sarah sits within one of the pools of illumination far below,
still bound to the bed by the chain. Judah and Sibyl are nowhere
in sight.

THE CROW

flies down from the rafters, landing on the floor at Sarah’s
feet. It CAWS at her, trying to communicate.



SARAH

…go…please go…



The Crow tilts its head as if trying to understand…



SARAH

(shaking her chain)

GO!!!



WHOOSH! A steel cage on a wire and pulley system CLATTERS down
from above, SLAMMING to the floor and trapping the bird within
it. The bird CAWS angrily, flitting from one side of the cage
to another, but its efforts are futile.

CROW’S POV (ANAMORPHIC)

as Judah emerges from the darkness, crouching down on the floor
to study the Crow. He grins.



JUDAH

Look who’s come home to roost.



CUT TO:



EXT. STREET – DAY OF THE DEAD CELEBRATION – NIGHT



A massive street festival is under way with Dia de los Muertos
CELEBRANTS mobbing the area. Paper “BIENVENIDOS” banners are
strung overhead. CHILDREN light strings of firecrackers. Masked
MUMMERS in garish costumes dance, MUSICIANS stroll. People are
holding giant papier-mache skulls on sticks along with torches
and calavera placards.

There are stalls offering marigolds and cockscomb, black beeswax
tapers, dangling toy skeletons, mountains of calaveras de azucar.

ASHE

pushes through the throng of revelers, invisible amidst the carnival
atmosphere. In his makeup he’s just another face in the crowd.

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S CAMPANILE/CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



Judah, now carrying the cage which contains the Crow, sweeps
aside the curtain of the camera obscura. He reaches up to a lever
which opens the camera’s lens. Moonlight shines down on the camera
table. With another lever, Judah adjusts the camera’s view.

CAMERA TABLE

The camera lens is now trained on the night sky. A churning landscape
of night-sky coulds drifts across the table’s surface, creating
an eerie effect.

JUDAH

sets a package wrapped in velvet on the camera table. He peels
back the cloth, revealing a set of ornately decorated, tapered
daggers. He looks back at Sarah.



JUDAH

Do you know what these are called? Misericords. Wonderful name,
isn’t it?



Judah removes one of the blades from its sheath, running the
glinting edge along his finger.



JUDAH In the Dark Ages, these were used to deliver the death
stroke to the mortally wounded. They were considered tools of
mercy.



Judah turns to the steel cage in which the Crow has been trapped.

He pulls on a leather falconer’s glove and opens the door to
the cage. The Crow flaps his wings madly, desperately trying
to strike at Judah with its beak and claws…

… but Judah secures his grip around the bird’s throat, pulling
it out. He pins the Crow to the focusing table of the camera
obscura with his gloved hand.

CUT TO:



EXT. STREET – DAY OF THE DEAD CELEBRATION – NIGHT



Ashe fights his way through the crowd. A drunken, MASKED WOMAN
grabs hold of him, spins him around, dancing. Ashe shoves her
aside, making his way to…



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER, STREET LEVEL – NIGHT



The black sky beyond shimmers with turbulent yellow thunderheads.
The entry way to the tower has been gated and chained. The only
way in is up.



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER, STREET LEVEL – NIGHT



Ashe grabs a hold of one of the ornamental statues which crowd
th ebuildint’s facade. He pulls himself up, starting the daunting
task of scaling the tower.

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S CAMPANILE/CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



Back to Judah and the Crow. The clouds being projected onto the
camera table (and subsequently the Crow itself) are rushing at
an unearthly speed. The create a surreal backdrop for the Crow’s
frenetically beating wings – in effect, a mockery of the bird
flying.



JUDAH

Easy, little wing. It will all be over soon.



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Ashe continues to climb. A cluster of PIGEONS take wing, startled
from their roost…

Ashe pulls back, one of his hands slipping free. He dangles there
for a moment, hanging by the tenuous grasp of his fingertips.

SIBYL

who has been lurking in the shadows, suddenly lifts her head
up…



SIBYL

(full of portent)

Ashe is here.



Judah grins. This moment has been a long time coming…



JUDAH

Not for long.



Judah raises the misericord up high. Sarah turns her head away
as…

…Judah plunges the weapon down, pounding it straight through
the bird’s right wing!

CUT TO:



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Ten stories up now. Ashe suddenly loses his handhold. He SCREAMS
in agony as he suffers the pain of the Crow through their symbiotic
link. Ashe stares down at his hand in disbelief…

CLOSE ON ASHE’S HAND

Blood seeps from a stigma-like wound on his palm.



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER – CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



Judah plunges a second misericord into the Crow’s left wing…



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER



Ashe CRIES OUT again as his left hand is seemingly twisted back
against his will. A second stigma wound appears.

He slips, tumbling to the next ledge down but catching himself
on his fingertips. He hazards a look down…

ASHE’S POV

Day of the Dead CELEBRANTS crowd the streets far below.

BACK TO SCENE



ASHE

(in agony)

…oh God…help me…



It takes every ounce of Ashe’s strength to keep from letting
go. He tightens his white-knuckled grip on the ledge above.

Shaking terribly, trying to fight back the pain, Ashe continues
to climb. He reaches up to a…

STONE MAIDEN

which protrudes from the building’s facade. The maiden’s face
has been all but worn bare by the harsh elements.

Ashe clutches the back of the maiden in a parody of a lover’s
embrace. Using the statue for support, he drags himself back
up to relative safety. Now Ashe is face to face with the maiden,
staring into its blind stone eyes.



ASHE

Sarah.



Ashe whispers the word like a mantra, using it to urge him on.
Steeling himself again, fighting the burning pain, Ashe resumes
his climb. He’s on autopilot now, just trying to reach the campanile,
which at this point, seems hopelessly unattainable.

THE SKY ABOVE

seems to churn and roil. A storm of epic proportions is about
to break.

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S CAMPANILE – CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



The Crow has now been crucified to the camera table, a misericord
staked through each wing.

CROW’S ANAMORPHIC POV

as Judah reaches for a third misericord. He raises it high above
his head, preparing for the coup de grace.



JUDAH

(WHISPERING)

Ashes, ashes, we all fall down…



As the dagger comes down we hear…



SARAH

(SCREAMING)

No!!!!



CUT TO:



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Ashe Cries out a final time as a GAPING WOUND appears on his
chest, BLOOD BLOSSOMING outward.

CITY STREET

The Day of the Dead celebrants swirl around us, Judah’s Tower
rising up behind the mob – an unholy ziggurat built to challenge
the gods. The CROWD has been worked up into a frenzy. Everyone
is singing and dancing. MUSIC blasts from loudspeakers…

ASHE

comes CRASHING DOWN atop a small vending stall filled to the
brim with flowers an sugar skulls. Time slows as a flurry of
golder marigold petals flutter down around his still form.



INT. JUDAH’S CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



The Crow is dead, transfixed by the gleaming misericords. Blood
is pooling beneath black flight feathers.

Judah steps back, momentarily overwhelmed by the enormity of
his crime.



JUDAH

It’s done.



Judah looks to the camera obscura’s table. The blood from the
Crow has completely covered the table’s concave surface, filling
it to the brim like liquid in a shallow bowl. The end result
is an eerie reflecting pool.

AS WE WATCH, THE IMAGE OF THE CLOUDS

cast by the camera lens onto the table begins to ripple and dissolve,
only to be replaced by Judah’s own, shimmering reflection.

BACK TO SCENE

With a shaking hand, Judah dips his fingers into the pooling
blood and begins to paint his face. A swatch of blood over one
eye, then a swatch over the other. A long, bloody smear over
his lips…

The action harkens back to the moment when Sarah painted Ashe’s
face – a parallel ritual turned on its head.

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S CAMPANILE – CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



Judah turns towards us, his transformation now complete. We see
that he has painted himself a parody of Ashe’s irony mask in
the Crow’s own blood.

SARAH

watches with a mixture of mounting horror and morbid curiousity.

JUDAH

scoops up a handful of the Crow’s blood and brings it to his
lips.

CLOSE ON JUDAH’S LIPS

as he drinks, letting the overflow trickle down over his chin
and neck.

CLOSE ON JUDAH’S FACE

his once-pallid features now glow with a kind of beatific radiance.

WE RISE UP

from Judah, up and up into the darkest reaches of his tower.
Judah is LAUGHING, laughing in the face of Death itself.

CUT TO:



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER – STREET



Ashe lies amidst a field of shimmering glass shards and flowers.

THE MASKED CELEBRANTS

slowly gather around Ashe, craning their necks for a view of
the fallen angel.

CLOSE ON ASHE’S FACE

Relaxed, peaceful, even. For a moment, we aren’t sure whether
or not Ashe’s soul has fled.

The peripheral noise from the street festival dies away. We’re
in the eye of the hurricane now. Once again, time seems to shudder
to a stop. And the only thing we hear are…

THE CROWS

Thousands of them, filling the heavens with their KEENING WAILS.

Ashe slowly opens his eyes, tentative. When you’re this deep
in the bosom of bliss, the last thing you want to do is waken,
but waken he does…

ASHE’S POV – THE SKY ABOVE JUDAH’S TOWER

is black with crows. And endless army of carrion-creatures, swirling
madly about.

BACK TO SCENE

Ashe sits up, stares at the crows, fascinated, frightened. Then
his eyes fall to the faces of the people around him. We are in
dream-time now, blurring the edges of reality.

A CHILD

wearing a skull mask pushes to the front of the crowd. He stares
at Ashe a moment, then lifts the mask from his face…

It’s Danny.



ASHE

(CONFUSED)

Danny…?



Ashe rushes to Danny’s side, holding him tight, his disbelief
overpowered by the unfettered joy of seeing his son once again.



ASHE

What are you doing here?!



DANNY

It’s time to go back, Dad.



Ashe looks up at the screaming crows above them.



ASHE

Is that why they’re here?



DANNY

(NODDING)

They’re the souls who came before you. They’re crying for the
people they’ve lost.

(BEAT)

Now they’re crying for you.



ASHE

But Sarah still needs me.



DANNY

You don’t understand, Dad. You work for the dead, not the living.
Your work here is done.



Ashe reaches for his son’s shoulders, all but pleading with him.



ASHE

I can’t go, not yet, not now…



DANNY

You have to.



ASHE

Danny, I can’t leave her like this…



The CRIES of the crows grow louder as the sky above becomes darker.

A shadow passes over Danny’s face. He Seems Saddened. For a moment,
it seems as if another entity creeps into Danny’s voice.



DANNY

If you turn your back on the dead now, you’ll be trapped between
the worlds. You’ll never be allowed to cross over.

(BEAT)

You’ll be alone, Dad. Forever.



Ashe hesitates a moment, realizing the enormity of what he is
about to do. It’s an agonizing choice.



ASHE

I have to stay.



Danny nods.



DANNY

I know.



Danny reaches out to touch Ashe’s painted face…



DANNY

(FORLORN)

Good-bye, Dad.



As Danny says his parting words, the SOUNDS of the world around
them come rushing back with startling clarity. Danny starts to
turn away…



ASHE

Danny, wait…!



WHAM! Ashe bolts up from the bed of flowers and glass. The spell
is broken. Was he dreaming…?

No, there’s Danny slipping back into the crows, the mask pulled
down over his face once again.

Ashe reaches for Danny, spinning him around, pulling off the
mask…

…only it’s not Danny! It’s a drunken DWARF with fucked-up teeth
who’s laughing his ass of at Ashe. Ashe recoils, horrified, then
spins around, suddenly finding himself face to face with…

JUDAH

standing just a few yards away, emerging from the doorway of
his tower. He got the anti-Crow blood mask on his face. His eyes
are glowing like twin stars and his lips are curled back in a
feral snarl. In his hands, he holds one of the chains from his
campanile.

Judah grabs Ashe by the lapels of his coat, draging him close
so they’re eye to eye — close enough to breathe the same beath
— two sides of a coin.



JUDAH

Tell me, Ashe. Do you every get the feeling we’re all just dead
men on leave?



ASHE

(seething with hatred)

Judah.



JUDAH

In the flesh.



Judah flings Ashe backwards…

Ashe reaches his hand into his coat, pulling out a .45. He FIRES
into Judah’s chest – once, twice, thrice…

Judah doesn’t even stagger, he just keeps on grinning. Wisps
of smoke rise up from the holes in his chest.

Ashe stares at Judah, dumbfounded.



ASHE

What…are…you?



JUDAH

I’m your shadow, Ashe. Every angel’s got a devil. Didn’t you
know that? Or maybe you just slept your way through Sunday school?



Judah lashes out with the rope. Ashe spins and falters. Incredibly,
he finds himself feeling pain.

Judah follows with a series of blows, each more savage than the
next, driving Ashe back…

Ashe stumbles, falls to his hands and knees. He reaches to his
mouth, his hand comes away spattered with blood. Ashe shakes
his head to clear it.

Judah kicks Ashe in the face, knocking him onto his back…

…but Ashe springs back to his feet. He tries to strike Judah.
Judah catches Ashe’s hand and squeezes tight. We hear bones snapping.

CRACK! Judah smashes out with his other fist, Ashe spins around
and collapses…

Ashe tries to push himself up by his hands. He coughs, spitting
up more blood, crawls forward…



ASHE

What… did you do to me…?



JUDAH

I’ve tasted the blood of the Crow and taken your power.



WHOOSH! Judah whips the rope about, snapping the end around Ashe’s
neck, dragging him off his feet.

Judah pulls Ashe forward, crouching over him like a spider ready
to devour its prey.



JUDAH

You’re flesh and blood now, Ashe. You can die like any other
man.



ASHE

Go to hell.



JUDAH

Already been there. And I must confess, I liked what I saw.



CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Sarah sobs quietly, still chained to the pillar. A figure suddenly
appears at her side — Sibyl. Sarah looks up…



SARAH

What…?



Sibyl produces a key from within her robes. She places the key
in the lock on Sarah’s manacles. With a turn of the key, the
manacles fall away and Sarah is free.

Sarah looks back at the blind oracle, uncertain.



SARAH

Why are you doing this?



Sibyl fixes Sarah with her blind stare.



SIBYL

Ashe needs you now. More than ever.



Sibyl raises her other hand. She’s holding one of the misericords
which she extends to Sarah.



SIBYL

Go to him.



Sarah takes the misericord and racees for the end of the campanile,
towards a beckoning doorway and a stairwell beyond. Printed on
a grime-smeared placard nearby are the words…

“THIS IS NOT AN EXIT”



Sarah rushes through the doorway, heedless.

CUT TO:



EXT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CITY STREETS – NIGHT



Judah plants his foot on Ashe’s chest, tightening the chain around
Ashe’s throat.



JUDAH

Looks like the dead have forsaken you, my friend.



Ashe clutches at the rusty chain links which bite into his flesh,
choking.



JUDAH

Look at you, bleeding like a stuck pig. Where’s your precious
strength? Where’s your power?

(drawing closer, whispering)

You’re nothing now, Ashe, not even a ghost.



Judah rises. He grabs a hold of the chain, pulling…

ASHE

down the street. Ashe SCREAMS as his body is dragged across the
asphalt…

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, ELEVATOR – NIGHT



Sarah rushes into a rickety old elevator, pulling the accordion-style
security gate shut. She punches the “DOWN” arrow on the tarnished
control panel. With a lurch and HUM the elevator car starts its
journey downward.



EXT. CITY STREET, MOVIE PALACE – NIGHT



Judah has dragged Ashe over to the East side of the street, in
front of an old movie palace. He leaps atop one of the vending
stalls and clambers onto the marquee itself.

JUDAH

shouts to the crowds below, his eyes on fire.



JUDAH

You want death?! Here he is, people!!! Take a good look!!!



Even as Ashe fights to free himself of the chain, Judah loops
one end of it over a street lamp. He jumps from the marquee,
using his body weight to pull Ashe from the ground…

ASHE

is dragged up into the air, dangling above the faces of the crowd.



EXT. CITY STREET, JUDAH’S TOWER – NIGHT



Sarah rushes out the front entrance of the tower, into the Day
of the Dead crowd which swarms below. She pushes through the
mob, trying to fight her way across the street.



EXT. CITY STREET – MOVIE PALACE – NIGHT



Ashe swings like a puppet from Judah’s improvised hangman’s noose.
His coat and short have been all but torn to shreds.

Judah drags down on the chain harder, lifting Ashe even higher,
tightening the noose. He secures the chain on a hydrant, then
strolls forward, inspecting his work. Judah circles Ashe, grinning
like the cat who swallowed the canary.



JUDAH

Now don’t we look pretty…



Ashe struggles, choking, causing…

THE TATTERED PAINTING

of Danny’s that Ashe had kept in his coat pocket to fall free.
It flutters to the ground, landing at Judah’s feet.

Judah kneels, picking it up. As he unfolds the painting, we see
that it has been stained with Ashe’s own blood. He tilts it this
way and that — as if he were appraising the craftsmanship of
the piece.



JUDAH

Nice. If you prick him, does he not bleed?



Judah looks up at Ashe, his eyes full of crazed humor, then he
very deliberately tears the painting to shreds, letting the pieces
fall away into the night wind.

Judah reaches for metal rod, lashing out at Ashe’s bare, bloodied
back…

WHACK! Ashe SCREAMS. Judah is hell-bent on beating Ashe into
oblivion. With every stroke of the switch the crowd CHEERS.

CLOSE ON ASHE

His eyes are rolling to whites as consciousness begins to recede…

ASHE’S POV

The swirling faces of the masked celebrants, with Judah front
and center. Mob mentality, everyone drunk and LAUGHING, jeering
at Ashe, the dangling fool. It’s a scene out of Hell…

.. and behind Judah, a familiar figure pushing her way to the
front of the crowd…

SARAH

lunges forward, clutching the misericord, shoving a reveller
aside…



SARAH

Get away from him!



Judah turns. Sarah drives the misericord into Judah’s eye. Judah,
momentarily blinded, falls back…

Sarah unlashes the end of the chain from the hydrant…

ASHE

falls to the street as the chain CLATTERS over the street lamp.
He unravels the chain from his throat and drags himself back
up…



ASHE

Sarah, get back!



Too late. Judah has torn the misericord from his eye. He rushes
up to Sarah and…

…THUNK! Drives it deep into her chest.



ASHE

SARAH!!!



Sarah gasps, drops to her knees, clutching at the dagger’s handle.
She pulls the misericord out. Blood begins to well up from the
wound. She stares at her blood-covered hands in disbelief, then
falls back.

Silence now as the crowd begins to back away. The mood has shifted.

Ashe drops by Sarah’s side. She stares up at the sky, eyes wide
with wonder…



SARAH

The crows…I can see them coming…



SARAH’S POV

Once again, the crows are wheeling around the ceiling of the
sky.

BACK TO SCENE

Ashe looks up at Judah, fueled by a righteous rage that’s been
burning since the moment of his resurrection. He rises. All reason
is gone. The only think that remains for Ashe is an unbridled
animal fury.

Ashe launches himself at Judah, sending the villain tumbling
back into a nest of scaffolding. One of the pipes punches clear
through Judah’s chest, impaling him!

Judah hangs there, transfixed like a butterfly with a pin stuck
through it. He struggles to pull himself from the piping, but
even so, he’s laughing hysterically…



JUDAH

You can’t stop me anymore, Ashe. You don’t have the power.



Ashe’s eyes boil with hatred.



ASHE

If it were just me, you’d be right, Judah. But I have an eternity
of pain to call upon…



Ashe lifts his hands up, exposing his bleeding palms.



ASHE

And the pain gives me strength.



ASHE’S PALMS

As we watch the stigmata close themselves up, blood drawing itself
back into the wounds.

Ashe raises his arms to the sky, gesturing to the crows which
spin high above his head.



ASHE

TAKE HIM!!!



EXT. JUDAH’S CAMPANILE – NIGHT



The murder of crows spirals down from the sky like a black tidal
wave. They descend on Judah as one entity, SCREAMING down from
the heavens like a storm of razor blades.



JUDAH

NO!!!



We get one final glimpse of horrified Judah’s face, eyes wide
with terror, before the tidal wave of black wings engulfs him.

JUDAH

lets loose a DEATH-SHRIEK that all but splits the sky as the
myriad beaks and talons rend him limb from limb.

DOWN IN THE STREET,

Ashe returns to Sarah’s side, lifting her up off the ground and
cradling her in his arms.



ASHE

You can’t die, Sarah… I stayed for you.



SARAH

(GASPING)

There’s a balance that needs to be kept…someone had to cross
over…



Sarah takes a ragged breath, wincing as a wave of pain washes
over her.



SARAH

I didn’t want it to be you…



Sarah looks up at Ashe, tries her level best to smile. She’s
at death’s door now – one foot already over the threshold. Her
face is pale, having lost so much blood. Tears spill down Ashe’s
cheeks, causing the war-paint makeup to run in rivulets.



ASHE

(in anguish)

I can’t go with you, Sarah. I have to stay here now.

(cursing his fate)

I have to stay.



SARAH

Do you love me?



Ashe nods.

Sarah reaches down to the wedding ring which hangs from her neck
on the chain. She tugs at the chain, snapping it apart. She holds
the ring out to Ashe.



SARAH

Take…this…



Ashe takes the ring from Sarah. She closes Ashe’s hand around
the ring, gripping his fist tightly.



SARAH

I’ll wait for you. Forever, if I have to.



She shuts her eyes, riding through another wave of pain.



ASHE

Oh God…



SARAH

Listen…if two people really love each other…



She inhales sharply. Breathing has become a labor for her now.



SARAH

…nothing can keep them apart.

(her voice fading)

…nothing.



Ashe nods, trying to let this thought reassure him. It’s the
only thing he has left to cling to.

SARAH’S POV

Ashe’s face, surrounded by a nimbus of light. We’re falling away
from him. Down, down, down. And as we fall, we hear a FLUTTERING
OF WINGS.

ON SARAH’S FACE

Her eyes lose focus. Her head goes slack in Ashe’s arms. She’s
gone.

Ashe lowers his lips to her, kissing her one final time.

Ashe cradles Sarah’s lifeless body in his arms, gently rocking
back and forth, tears streaming down his cheeks.

And as we pull back from them, we realize that the scene mirrors
the prophetic image from Sarah’s own painting – the woman dying
in the arms of her lover, surrounded by a gallery of skull-masked
celebrants.

Ashe stands, lifting Sarah in his arms. He turns to leave…

THE DAY OF THE DEAD CROWD

slowly part for him, revealing a path of marigold petals leading
away down the street. It’s almost as if, by silent consensus,
the crowd has come to understand what has happened here this
night.

ASHE

moves through the crowd carrying Sarah in his arms. The people
close ranks behind him and we…

CUT TO:



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMERA OBSCURA – NIGHT



Sibyl stands over the camera obscura. On the table’s focusing
surface we see the street below.

ASHE

is carrying Sarah in his arms, moving through the crowd of silent
witnesses.

SIBYL

nods to herself, satisfied. We see what might be a trace of a
smile cross her lips.

Sibyl turns and exits the camera obscura.



INT. JUDAH’S TOWER, CAMPANILE – NIGHT



Sibyl approaches the table where the stag beetle is tethered.
Removing a pair of scissors from within her robes, Sibyl cuts
the thread which binds the beetle.

THE STAG BEETLE,

free at last, quickly scurries out of the box and across the
table, disappearing into the shadows.

Sibyl follows suit, gathering her robes about her and stepping
on into the darkness.

DISSOLVE TO:



EXT. INNER-CITY CHURCH – DAWN



The same church we visited the night before. Ashe, still carrying
Sarah in his arms, enters the sanctuary.

The church is aglow with candles. Ashe lays Sarah’s body down
in front of the offrenda, folding her arms across her chest,
leaving her in a state of repose. He stands, taking in one last
look.

As Ashe moves to leave, he sees the elderly priest he had spoken
to earlier.



PRIEST

Why are you still here?



ASHE

Because I have nowhere left to go.



Ashe steps past the priest, moving towards the doorway and the
daylight beyond.



PRIEST

What will you do, then?



ASHE

(looking back)

This city is filled with shadows. One more won’t make it any
darker.



EXT. CHURCH – DAWN



Ashe exits the church, finding haven in a shadowed doorway. He
reaches into his pocket, removing the wedding ring Sarah had
given to him…

CLOSE ON THE RING

as Ashe turns it over in his hands, seeing the word “FOREVER”
inscribed on the inside of the band. He slips it on his finger.



GRACE (O.S.)

(CONCERNED)

Are you all right?



Ashe looks up to see…

GRACE,

the drugged-out girl that Sarah helped at the beginning of the
film. She’s looking good now, clean of the poison that once possessed
her. And damned if she isn’t holding Gabriel in her arms.



GRACE

Long night, huh?



Gabriel MEOWS to Ashe. Ashe reaches out and scratches the cat’s
ear.



GRACE

Isn’t he cool? I found him on the street. I was going to take
him home with me.



ASHE

You should. Looks like he needs a home.



GRACE

Well, see ya.



She smiles at him and starts off down the street. Gabriel turns
around in Grace’s arms and peers back at Ashe from over her shoulder.

Ashe moves out from the shadows into the steadily growing light,
watching them. We see just a hint of hope in his eyes – hope
that someday he and Sarah will be reunited.

As we hold on Ashe’s face, Sarah’s VOICE-OVER begins.



SARAH (V.O.)

I believe there’s a place where the restless souls wanter…



DISSOLVE TO:



EXT. LIMBO – DAWN



The same scene as the beginning of our film. We’ve made a circle.
A heavy mist hangs before us – endless and impenetrable. And
out of that primordial fog a CROW materializes, flying towards
the camera in slow motion.



SARAH (V.O.)

Burdened by the weight of their own sadness, they cannot enter
Heaven…



Presently a second shape materializes – a FIGURE ON HORSEBACK,
galloping after the Crow.



SARAH (V.O.)

And so they wait, trapped between our world and the next, endlessly
searching for a way to rid themselves of their pain – in the
hopes that somehow, some day, they will be reunited…



As the dark rider comes towards us, we realize that it’s Sarah
whose baleful eyes are now shining behind the irony mask war
paint.



SARAH (V.O.)

…with the ones they love.



CUT TO:



EXT. FREEWAY OVERPASS – DAWN



Ashe is back on his bike, racing beneath the cathedral-like arches
of the overpass. As he sweeps past a concrete pillar we…

CUT TO:



EXT. LIMBO – DAY/NIGHT



Sarah on her horse, galloping in parallel action. As she sweeps
last a tree we…

CUT TO:



EXT. FREEWAY OVERPASS – DAWN



Ashe on the bike. Now we intercut between the two doomed lovers,
each on their respective steeds. Worlds apart, and yet, somehow
traveling the same road.

We are intercutting faster and faster, until the sound of HOOFBEATS
and the MOTORCYCLE’S ROAR are indistinguishable.

Until the two figures themselves begin to blur.

Faster and faster and faster until we…

CUT TO BLACK.

Over the darkness we hear Sarah’s final words to Ashe:



SARAH’S VOICE

If two people really love each other, nothing can keep them apart…

(BEAT)

Nothing.



THE END

[amazonjs asin=”B0069EO9GW” locale=”JP” title=”THE CROW / ザ・クロウ (クロウ2) DVD”]



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