Strange Changes (converted)


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            FADE IN:

      1     INT. HOUSE -- NIGHT                                         1

            Open on a young boy, about fourteen years old, blowing out
            the candles on a birthday cake. All around him are his
            friends, and we also see his MOM.

            His POV: all of them gathered around the kitchen table,
            clapping and congratulating him.

            On him:

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      Last week I turned fourteen. The party
                      was great. All my friends were there and
                      I got great stuff. 

            Isolated shots of items listed:

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      Cool Lord of the Rings stuff, 

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      Nintendo Gamecube, 

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      a cool phone that looks like a '57 Chevy
                      Bel-Air and rings that new Kid Rock song.
                      You know the one. 

      2     INT. HOUSE -- NIGHT                                         2

            The Young Boy is opening the present that is the "'57 Chevy"
            phone, ecstatic. All of the present friends are still
            gathered around. MOM is there. DAD is there. 

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      Dad said after I opened it, in front of
                      all my friends, that he'd had a hard time
                      deciding whether it should be a Kid Rock
                      or a Neil Young song. Neil Young is Dad's
                      music. He's always messing with me about
                      how great his music is.

            Dad lovingly messes up the Young Boy's hair.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      The next day he was going to leave on his
                      monthly business trip. 

      3     INT. HOUSE -- DAY                                           3

            At the front door, we see Mom seeing off Dad. He stands in
            the doorway with a suitcase in one hand, an overcoat draped
            over the same arm. Mom is standing in the doorway also, in

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      He's been gone one week out of every
                      month for as far back as I can remember. 

            On the Young Boy, standing further back, watching the

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      I'm told it's been going on since before
                      Dad married Mom. My Dad writes computer

            Dad waves goodbye to his son

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      I always believed that he went to the
                      headquarters of gigantic companies to
                      show them new systems. 

            The Young Boy waves back.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      That's what they'd been telling me.

            On Dad walking out the front door. Mom waving goodbye after

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      The truth is way cooler.

      4     INT. HOUSE -- NIGHT                                         4

            On the Young Boy, looking at his father.

            Boy's POV: Father looking back, lovingly. He winks in slow

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      I went downstairs, later that night, for
                      the first time after ten-thirty in four

      5     INT. UPSTAIRS/HOUSE -- SAME NIGHT                           5

            The Young Boy is watching TV, upstairs, in the "living room".  

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      It's been the cardinal rule forever. It's
                      why we have the living room upstairs. 

      6     INT. DOWNSTAIRS/HOUSE -- FLASHBACK/NIGHT                    6

            Slow movement through the house. It is night. The three of
            them are in the downstairs living room. Dad sits in his easy
            chair. Mom is on the couch. The Young Boy is laying with his
            head on a pillow, which is on his Mom's lap. They are all
            watching TV.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      I remember it like yesterday, but it was
                      like four years ago when Dad said to Mom, 

                      Well, Sweet, I think our boy gets to stay
                      up later from now on.
                      He's the big ten years old, so that's an
                      extra half-hour to watch TV before bed, 

            Dad's POV: the Young Boy's eyebrows shoot up, excited,

            or better yet, read a book now and then.

            the Young Boy's eyebrows fall.

                                DAD (cont'd)
                      I guess we'll be moving the living room
                      upstairs then.

            On the Young Boy, and his Mom. The boy is dubious by that
            last remark. Mom's eyes immediately harden, and glare at Dad.

                                YOUNG BOY
                      Cool! An extra half hour! Thanks, Dad.

            Dad smiles, indulgently, at his son. Then his eyes raise to
            the Mom, as the Young Boy's attention goes back to the TV. 

            She looks back at him, worried, then down at the boy.

            Out on Dad, serious now, goes back to watching the TV, as
            well. Decision made.

      7     INT. HOUSE -- DAY                                           7

            The Young Boy comes back from school, in through the front

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      The next day, after school, I came home
                      to find something definitely new.

            Mom and Dad come down the stairs to meet him, then together,
            they lead him back up the stairs.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)

            Dad and Mom had both converted Dad's old office upstairs into
            something that was like a really cool dream. 

      8     INT. HOUSE/UPSTAIRS -- DAY                                  8

            They lead him into the new "living room". 

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      Dad had bought our _____ inch TV that
                      day, the one that's still in there now,
                      and Nintendo 64, which was new at the
                      time. I could play games from now on
                      sitting in front of that screen, and it
                      was like being inside the bobsled, or
                      right in the cockpit of the 747. 

      9     INT. HOUSE/DOWNSTAIRS/OFFICE -- DAY                         9

            Dad moving his desk into the new downstairs office. Mom
            bustling about with papers, helping.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      The reason for the switch was so Dad
                      could start taking meetings in his new
                      office, which would be downstairs in the
                      room off the kitchen, formerly Mom's
                      utility room where she washes clothes. 

     10     INT. HOUSE/GARAGE -- NIGHT                                 10

            Mom is doing laundry, throwing clothes in the washer.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      From now on, the laundry machines would
                      be in the garage. 

     11     INT. HOUSE/UPSTAIRS -- NIGHT                               11

            The Young Boy is playing videogames in the upstairs living
            room. Dad comes in and joins him, picking up a joystick.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      Dad said most of his clients wanted their
                      meetings at night because it was the only
                      times they could plan meetings. I
                      believed it. I knew how hard Dad worked.
                      I would often have to go upstairs as soon
                      as it got dark. 

     12     INT. HOUSE/BEDROOM -- NIGHT                                12

            The Young Boy lays in bed, eyes wide open, listening.

     13     INT. HOUSE/HALLWAY/UPSTAIRS -- NIGHT                       13

            Our POV: perhaps slow dolly toward the stairs leading down to
            the bottom level of the house. We see shadows playing on the

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      It didn't matter much that I'd never
                      overheard one conversation go on down
                      there, or even a voice besides Mom and

     14     INT. HOUSE/UPSTAIRS -- NIGHT                               14

            The Young Boy is playing video games. Mom comes into the room
            holding a videotape. She closes the door behind her. She says
            something to the Young Boy and he looks at her, but we can't
            hear what they say to each other. 

                                YOUNG BOY'S V.O.
                      I never minded too much. Most nights, Dad
                      didn't have meetings, and he would play
                      Nintendo with me. On nights when he had
                      to be downstairs, Mom would play instead.

            Different angle: showing the doorway that goes into the
            hallway. Mom slips the tape into the VCR, and we see

            their POV: the screen turns from the videogame, to the
            videotaped birthday party they just had that evening.
            She sits beside him, and they watch, but then the phone in
            the other room RINGS. Mom looks up, listening. She gets up to
            go answer it as the Young Boy raises the remote control.

            Different angle: the Young Boy aiming the remote at 'us' (the

            The screen goes mute and pauses the picture.

            Same angle as one preceding: the Young Boy waiting for his
            Mom to return.

                                MOM O.S.
                      Hello? Hi, Lorraine. Yeah, it went great!
                      We're just sitting down now to watch the
                      video. Oh, I know! We just started it. 

            Different angle: same as preceding. 

                                MOM O.S.
                      I know, sweetie. He knows you couldn't be
                      here; it's okay. Yes, he loved the
                      clothes you sent him.

            The Young Boy's eyes flick to..

            The alarm clock: big, red, digital numbers: 11:15.

                                MOM O.S.
                      Well, yeah, we're staying home tomorrow.
                      Donnie's going away on business, and
                      maybe me and Donnie, jr. will go to a
                      movie or something.

            Different angle: on the Young Boy, head turned away from the
            TV, toward the door, which is where 'we' are standing.

            His POV: the open door, the hallway beyond.

            Previous: the Young Boy gets up.

            And walks out into the hallway.

     15     INT. HOUSE/UPSTAIRS/HALLWAY -- NIGHT                       15

            We are in front of him, tracking him walking quietly toward
            the stairs.

                                MOM O.S.
                          (in the bedroom across from the
                           "living" room)
                      I know! You've got to go to lunch with me
                      sometime this week. We don't go out
                      enough. I know. It's so crazy around
                      here, sometimes. Donnie, jr. has a lot
                      going on at school and...yeah, I know...
                          (voice fading as the Young Boy
                           gets further away.)

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      I went downstairs, and I have no idea

     16     INT. HOUSE/DOWNSTAIRS -- NIGHT                             16

            Dad is sitting in his easy-chair, holding a coffee cup. Past
            him, we see the Young Boy creeping down the stairs. There is
            no sound, here. We see Dad hear his son even though no sound
            has been made. 


                                YOUNG BOY
                      Dad, can I come downstairs?

                      It's high time ya did, kid. Come on down
                      here and sit with me for a minute or

            The Young Boy comes down the rest of the stairs and into the
            old living room.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      He was sort of giving me the impression
                      that he had been waiting for me, like I
                      was usually waiting for him. 

            The Young Boy takes a seat on the couch.

                                YOUNG BOY
                      How come you're not coming up?

                      Well, because there's no point in that

            On the Young Boy, dubious at the remark.

                                YOUNG BOY
                      But it's a Gamecube, Dad, you can't quit

                      You may not want to play anymore either,
                      when you know what I know, son.

                                YOUNG BOY
                      What's that?

                      How old are you again? Sixteen?

            Wide angle: the Young Boy slumps his shoulders, impatient.

                          (sober again)
                      Okay, I guess fourteen candles means
                      you're a man now. I can let you in on a
                      little secret, if you want.

                                YOUNG BOY

                      All right, fine, here it is. I don't sell
                      computer systems. Matter of fact, I don't
                      have meetings here after you go upstairs
                      at night.

            On the Young Boy, digesting that he's been lied to by the one
            he trust most.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      Dad's tone was cool and relaxed, very
                      different from what it would become five
                      minutes later. I just listened, feeling
                      about ten different ways at once. I was
                      surprised and not surprised. My Dad's
                      night life had struck me as weird for a
                      couple years now.

                      I'm proud of you, son. I'm really, really
                      just proud.

            Wide angle: the two looking at each other. 

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      I was looking at him looking at me, and
                      the little bit of mad I had been feeling
                      toward him just went away. Dad had never
                      lied to me, except that now he's telling
                      me that he's always been lying to me. 

                      You're fourteen now, and from now on,
                      things are gonna be different.

                                YOUNG BOY
                      How different?

            On Dad:

                      Do you trust me, son?

            The Young Boy nods his head, at the same time looking as if
            he might not. 

            On Dad:

                      Look down at your arm, and don't be

            On the Young Boy, eyes slowly falling to his arm. What they
            see makes them grow wider still.

            Boy's POV: the hair growing on his arm, through his T-Shirt.

            Previous: the boy freaking out, but too paralyzed to move.
            When his eyes come up again to his Dad, the jaw drops as

            On Dad, his face contorting into a snout. Amusingly, he still
            holds the coffee cup he's been holding through the whole

            On the Young Boy, staring at his father, frozen in fear and

            Dad's hand, holding the coffee cup, moves into view next to
            the end table seperating them, and sets it down. We see it
            says: Number #1 Dad. The hand is now a claw.

            The Young Boy's POV: Dad sitting back, reclining, only now
            he's a werewolf.

                                DAD (cont'd)

            On the Young Boy: the snout is coming out of his face.

                                DAD (cont'd)
                      Today, you're a man.

            Wide angle: They are both transformed, still sitting where
            they were.

            Mom knows about the secret, and she's always known that I
            would follow in Dad's shoes. 

            They rise, embrace, and turn toward 'us', (front door).

                                YOUNG BOY V.O.
                      My friend Marvin Nader and his Dad go
                      fishing in the summer, and hunting in the
                      winter. Gary Muntz is on the softball
                      team, and his Dad is the coach. My other
                      friend, Alan Yester, has a real strict
                      Dad, and he always wants me to sneak off
                      behind the school to smoke cigarettes he
                      lifts from his Dad's study. 

            Dad and his Young Boy head out the front door, into the

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                      I'm just glad my Dad and I are pals; what
                      you do for laughs is beside the point. 

            Closer angle: the door closing on 'us'.

                                YOUNG BOY V.O. (cont'd)
                          (on black)
                      I'm a lot luckier than some kids.
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