CHOICES

By Adrian Tullberg

INT - VIDEO STORE - SHELVES

Two DINKs (Double Income, No Kids) are browsing, KELLY and JAMES.

JAMES

How about this one?

KELLY

Explosions, shooting, violence, and the lead actress is more famous for taking her top off than any acting ability she might have. (Turns around) This one's supposed to be good.

JAMES

It's French.

KELLY

They do really good films

JAMES

I hate riding those bloody subtitles.

KELLY

It's called a plot.

JAMES

I thought this was our night off.

KELLY

And I want a film with a bit of intelligence. (takes another) I like this one. Miranda saw it in the cinemas, and said she laughed until her bladder burst.

JAMES (Sarcasm drips like engine oil)

Gee. Can't wait.

INT - VIDEO STORE - COUNTER

JAMES and KELLY head to the counter. The CLERK, takes their selection, and smirks while he wands them.

CLERK

Let me guess. She chose this lot.

KELLY

We-

JAMES

She did.

CLERK

Thought so.

KELLY

I guess you know what a good movie is when you see it.

CLERK

I also know when somebody's making a pretentious pseudo-intellectual statement.

KELLY is stunned The CLERK presses on.

CLERK (cont'd)

Okay. One French film. Picked at random from the 'Arthouse' section. Listen honey, if he thinks you're dumb, this isn't going to convince him otherwise.

KELLY

Look here, you …

CLERK

Who stars in it?

KELLY

I, uh …

CLERK

Did it place in Cannes?

KELLY

What?

CLERK

Did the guys who made this make anything else beforehand?

KELLY is on the ropes

CLERK (cont'd)

Well, I knew all that. And did you know how I knew? It's a little thing called (flips the cover around) reading the back! Try it sometime!

KELLY (incensed)

What do you think …

CLERK (calling)

Who here is doing a Degree in Communication, specialising in 20th Century Cinema History? (raises hand) anybody else? (Calling) Last chance!

KELLY (coldly)

Who's your manager?

CLERK (looking down, proffers his namebadge.)

Right here.

Continues wanding, KELLY growing more mortified.

CLERK

'A tale of growing up in the heartland of America'. How original. Oh. And it's starring a Dawson's Creek pretty boy. Here. (Slaps a video on the counter) 'Night of the Living Dead'. If you like watching the legally brain dead, it's a bit more realistic. And here we have the latest teen gross out comedy! (Fake laugh) Look! He's trapped his genitals inside a revolving door! Hilarious! (Stops laughing) Look, just because you're fast approaching thirty-five without a kid to show for it doesn't mean you have to pretend you're young, okay?

A micron short of a meltdown, KELLY storms off, not bothering with the videos.

As she exits, the CLERK reaches under the counter, and produces a bag full of videos to JAMES.

CLERK

Here's the stuff you phoned in earlier.

JAMES

Thanks (hands the Clerk a fifty) keep the change.

The CLERK looks well chuffed as JAMES leaves with the videos he wanted.

END