The entire week on Loving the Language of Literacy will be comprised of me sharing a scene and its backstory that I wrote for an Independent Study Project having to do with Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein. I formatted it as if it were a professional Screenplay (which is a lot harder than I thought it would be) and attempted to translate it for film the best I could. Sadly, the proper margins and spacing didn't transfer over well into Blogger. Warning - There are spoilers for the novel if you haven't read it.
|This is what an average screenplay sheet would look like.|
Today's scene takes place where most of the movie would - inside the Chateau de Bordeaux - but this particular one features Verity, Fraulein Engel, Von Linden, the Unnamed Female French Prisoner, and Gestapo Underlings. Unlike the treatment for most of the scenes, "LIE," attempts to give audiences a full 360 degree view of the situation, not necessarily from a particular perspective. We learn as readers about Von Linden's weakness - his precious daughter - who Verity brings up, learning that he can actually be unhinged. Verity on the other hand is near-delerious after two months in prison and flies into an understandable frenzy towards the Unnamed Female French Prisoner.
Int. Chateau de Bordeaux; Verity’s Prison Cell- Day
The crying and shrieking in pain of the Unnamed Female French Prisoner being tortured for answers filters through the walls of Verity’s cell. Verity pulls out her hair in annoyance with her. Verity jumps up and begins to scream.
LIE! Lie to them, you stupid cow! Say anything! Stop being such a damned martyr and LIE!
Verity wrestles with the decorative iron stub where the porcelain door handle she had previously unscrewed and thrown at Thibaut’s head.
LIE! LIE TO THEM!
Unnamed Gestapo Underling opens the previously locked door so that Verity falls forward from putting so much weight on it, then picks Verity up and holds her up. Von Linden beckoned to Verity, she obeys, then he threw her down onto her knees, letting her cower for a few minutes.
You’ve advice for your fellow prisoner? I’m not sure she realizes you are addressing her. Tell her again.
Verity shares her head in partial disagreement/misunderstanding.
Go to her side, look in her face, speak to her. Speak clearly so we can all hear you.
Verity places her face next to Unnamed Female French Prisoner, swallows, then whispers to her.
Save yourself. Lie to them.
Unnamed Female French Prisoner attempts to spit at Verity.
She doesn’t think a great deal of your advice. Tell her again.
UNNAMED FEMALE FRENCH PRISONER
(gathers strength to croak)
Lie to them? Is that what you do?
The room temporarily falls silent and then Verity flies off the handle.
Answer her question
You fucking hypocrite! Don’t you ever lie? What the hell do you do? What do you tell your daughter? When she asks about your work, what ruth does the lovely Isolde get out of you?
Everyone falls silent, unsure of what to do.
She has the filthiest tongue of any woman in France. Burn her mouth clean.
Unnamed Gestapo Underlings hold Verity down as they argue about the correct dosage of phenol. Unnamed Female French Prisoners takes the opportunity to rest for a few moments. A bottle and gloves is produced, the entire room on edge and unsure of what to do.
Look at me! Look at me, Amadeus von Linden, you sadist hypocrite, and watch this time! You’re not questioning me now, this isn’t your work, I’m not an enemy agent spewing wireless code! I’m just a mingling Scots slag screaming insults at your daughter! So enjoy yourself and watch! Think of Isolde! Think of Isolde and watch!
Von Linden gestures to stop.
Tomorrow, after she’s eaten. Fraulein Engel knows who to prepare the phenol.
Coward! Coward! Do it now! Do it yourself!
Get her out of here.