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B A B Y"
Written by Michael Steven Gregory
WGA Registered E-mail: msg@RandomCove.com
FADE IN: EXT. THE SETTING SUN slung low along the horizon parting Pacific ocean from sky to wash the heavens in roiling phantasmagoria. MUSIC UP: The Rolling Stones' Gimme Shelter over and under -INT. BORDER PATROL LOCKER ROOM - A LEATHER BELT strapped around a man's waist, buckle gleaming. A BULLET-PROOF VEST slipped on, zipped tight. AN AMMO CLIP snapped into the blue steel of a polished .45. EXT. NORTH OF THE LINE - A CAR pulls to a stop--urgent. INT. CAR - GEAR SHIFT jammed into PARK. EXT. CAR - THE PASSENGER SIDE DOOR swings open and someone steps out clad in denim and new leather sneakers. THE SETTING SUN bleeds lower into a horizon of jagged rock formations on which a small pick-up truck is silhouetted. A MAN surveys the terrain through a large telescope mounted on its bed. EXT. SOUTH OF THE LINE - MOVING FAST with several frayed huaraches and tattered canvas shoes donned by a THRONG OF PEOPLE pushing forward. A LARGE ROCK is swept up from the ground. A YOUNG BOY'S EYES open wide, excited. THE SETTING SUN near completely over the horizon as dust spirals upward. Focused clearly on -Another one in beside it. Holstered.
2. EXT. SOUTH OF THE LINE - THE THRONG OF PEOPLE come to a restless stop, pressed together, bodies rocking. Waiting... EXT. HOLE IN THE FENCE - THE GATE KEEPER A kind of shaman, he squats in shadow. What can be seen of his face is ancient. He bobs his head rhythmically, chanting as -THE SETTING SUN sinks lower. EXT. NORTH OF THE LINE - AMERICANS Blue collar, white collar, hardhats and suits, gathered anxious in the waning day. Some carry picket signs that read: CLOSE OUR BORDER! And all are waiting... INT. BORDER PATROL LOCKER ROOM - A LEATHER GLOVE is pulled onto a man's hand. A WIDE-BRIMMED HAT fitted neatly on his head. There is an insignia emblazoned across its brow: The United States Border Patrol. EXT. STATION - A SMOLDERING CIGARETTE is crushed out by a worn leather boot that steps onto the strut of a helicopter and into its cockpit. HELICOPTER ROTOR whines to life as -CAN OF BEER is opened and guzzled by someone. A voice warbles loud from a speaker somewhere on which, at last -THE SETTING SUN vanishes over the horizon and nightfall veils the land. AN AMERICAN MAN leaps up and shouts: WHITE MAN AMERICA FIRST!!! The clamor of crowd as --
3. EXT. "LIGHT UP" DEMONSTRATION - NIGHT - MOVING BACK FAST Headlamps ignite in rapid succession--one after the other on a line of vehicles parked side by side as -THE HELICOPTER'S SPOTLIGHT blazes white and the machine lifts to the sky. INT. HELICOPTER - NIGHT The PILOT works its controls as -HELICOPTER'S POV We pitch and move low as the chopper's fierce spotlight jabs at earth to reveal in fleeting rushes: -- THE U.S. POINT OF ENTRY - Eight lanes of traffic tangled in a queue beneath glaring floodlamps. -- RANCHEETOS, the digs of squalor and scavengers--tiny shacks without electricity that spot the torrid badlands. -- THE PACIFIC OCEAN stretching to infinity beyond the barren moonscape of Otay Mesa where --- "LIGHT UP THE BORDER" Demonstrators rally in protest. Their parked cars cast headlight enfilade south across the walled line that separates them from --- MEXICAN NATIONALS - equal in number, they raise their fists and bark defiance at their American counterparts. Some even hurtle rocks across the line. SUBTITLE READS: SAN YSIDRO INTERNATIONAL BORDER CROSSING BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND MEXICO. 1987. The demonstration labors toward melee as we sweep over, past and into the gathering dark full of scraggy hills and motionful gullies where -EXT. HOLE IN THE FENCE - NIGHT - THE HELICOPTER flies over and is gone. MOTHER (V.O.) (in Spanish) Chopi, they'll see you! THE BOY - CHOPI An 11-year-old Mexican with a painted butterfly talisman around his neck ducks to where his MOTHER and a half-dozen others wait. Some carry knapsacks. Most only the clothes on their back.
4. A PREGNANT WOMAN is comforted by her HUSBAND as all eyes focus on their "COYOTE." He moves to the fence hole where the ancient "Gate Keeper" sits gnawing on a piece of chicken, chanting ill-bode. Now! COYOTE We must hurry. Mother nabs
Everyone moves and Chopi goes to lead the pack. his sleeve, halting -MOTHER Chopi...
A sheepish grin from the boy, obviously quite excited about the journey. They fall in behind the others to climb through the hole and into America as -FLESHY CHICKEN BONES land at Chopi's feet. BACK TO SCENE Chopi stops, startled. GATE KEEPER The North is where demons feed. Hide and they will find you. There are demons in the North! The Gate Keeper cackles and Chopi's Mother gets spooked. As fireworks burst somewhere overhead she pushes her son onward through the fence, when -Coyote stops Mother, takes hold of her elaborately embroidered tejido (shoulder bag). COYOTE This is what you must do for me to guide you and your boy North. He pulls a bundle from his jacket wrapped in brown paper secured by twine, not much larger than a brick. ON CHOPI He turns to find his Mother and the Coyote crouched some yards back. He can not see what they're doing. COYOTE AND MOTHER COYOTE (CONT'D) (over protest) -- It is the only way! Do you understand?
5. MOTHER ...Si. Coyote indiscriminately removes contents from the tejido until his bundle fits snugly. Mother goes to retrieve her belongings -COYOTE Leave it! She obeys and follows after him to join Chopi and the others as the Gate Keeper's CACKLE chills the night. GATE KEEPER Hide and they will find you! EXT. DEMONSTRATION - NIGHT - AMERICAN SIDE where 12-packs are consumed and crushed empties litter the land. The atmosphere is becoming one of some tail-gate party gone mad. INT. HELICOPTER - NIGHT flying low to the ground and moving fast. PILOT (V.O.) -- Moving east along the lake. INT. BORDER PATROL COMMAND CENTER - NIGHT A narrow room with maps and monitors. COMMAND (V.O.) Roger that, Foxtrot. Scope's got movement off Goat Canyon. RADIO (V.O.) 140 here, I'll take a look. EXT. RIDGE - NIGHT Coyote tops it only to discover a Border Patrol round-up directly below. Coyote bites dirt, signals the Mexicans to remain still as -COYOTE La migra... -- some rocks tumble noisily off the ridge. THE BORDER PATROL ROUND-UP An oasis of light spilling from vehicles where MIGRANTS are being arrested. Coyote freezes. RADIO CHATTER:
6. Many are drenched with oily fluid. TWO AGENTS, guised head to toe in pale green rubber suits right out of "B" movie scifi, are the only ones who touch them physically. Nobody notices the fallen rocks. ON CHOPI peeping over the ridge to allow him a gander. suddenly--horrified to find -A SCORPION crawl onto the back of his hand. CHOPI He goes rigid. He can't breathe. Mere feet away, his Mother clenches a cross in both fists, too absorbed in prayer to notice. THE SCORPION remains on Chopi's hand, its lethal stinger coiled ready. THE COYOTE slinks away from the top of the ridge, undetected. the band into a gully. CHOPI Thinking, thinking, thinking--he keeps his hand flat against the rock so's not to test the creature. With his free hand he makes to flick it, shaking badly. Hesitant. Fingers getting closer. Chopi makes a face, he closes his eyes. Then--FLICK!--the critter is gone. Before he can breathe, Chopi's Mother tugs him by the ear. MOTHER (in Spanish) Quit playing! EXT. GULLY - NIGHT - MOVING WITH Coyote and the "Illegals" stealthily make to avoid a stagnant, glowing stream along now wear plastic bags over their shoes to The stench makes the Pregnant Woman gag. into the sky somewhere. their way, careful the bottom. Many protect their feet. A flare drifts He signals He looks down
Nobody notices the movement sensor beacon they pass. INT. BORDER PATROL COMMAND CENTER - NIGHT - A COMPUTER SCREEN flashes an alert.
7. COMMAND (V.O.) We got movement off -EXT. HELICOPTER - NIGHT COMMAND (V.O.) -- the channel east, in route to the Promised Land. PILOT (V.O.) Roger 827. The helicopter banks. EXT. MESA - NIGHT Coyote emerges from the gully, his band in tow. From this vantage can be seen the whole of San Diego's South Bay sprinkled with lights. The Coyote stands fully, admiring the simple splendor of it all as a hot gust of wind presses against his face. A Santa Ana. good for us. COYOTE The Devil Wind. Is Whereupon --
Nods all around as Migrants sigh relief. HELICOPTER'S POV Its spotlight finds Coyote. BEDLAM
Coyote and the Illegals react as one--scramble madly to avoid the fierce light in a storm of dust kicked up by the rotors. A couple of Migrants tumble into the toxic swill as Mother and Chopi bolt for cover. A Border Patrol landrover leaps over a hill as Mother's tejido drops to the ground. The woman stops, twisting her ankle and falling directly into the path of the speeding landrover -CHOPI Mama! He's there--pulls her from its path, scooping up the tejido. The rover brakes, expelling an AGENT. Coyote tries to flee but the Agent tackles him hard. Coyote throws a frantic look to -MOTHER'S TEJIDO slung over Chopi's shoulder.