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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Hook, Line & Sinker

  1. FADE IN.


  2. Act 1


  3. EXT. ROAD - MORNING


  4. PETER is driving his WIFE, approaching a cross-harbour tunnel.


  5. PETER: Can't believe it, through traffic! People couldn't travel overseas though.


  6. WIFE: Perhaps, few road users have resumed their businesses.


  7. PETER (V.O.): Today is the first working day after the Chinese New Year holidays. Both my wife and I have to work.


  8. INT. STUDY - LATER


  9. PETER (V.O.): Decades ago, I used to pay New Year visits to friends around this time.


  10. Peter checks a Quora notification.


  11. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Here's the answer request: Have you ever had a "hook, line & sinker" moment? What does that mean?


  12. Surfing the web with his phone, Peter reads.


  13. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The expression is meant to emphasize that someone has been completely deceived or tricked...I did have such a time, not just a moment.


  14. Act 2


  15. FLASHBACK


  16. EXT. VILLAGE HOUSES - DAY (1973-1974)


  17. Carrying two tanks of water, Peter (19) walks past a house, greeting the PEOPLE inside.


  18. PETER (V.O.): My former classmate's family has been kind to me. I'm living primitively, My rental village house doesn't have any water supply.


  19. MONTAGE OF PETER'S PAYING NEW YEAR VISITS TO A FAMILY (1975-1985)


  20. In the same old village house, Peter (21-31) is visiting a FAMILY annually. He thanks a WOMAN for the Chinese New Year red packets.


  21. END MONTAGE


  22. INT. VILLAGE HOUSE - DAY (Chinese New Year, 1986)


  23. A MAN is talking to Peter (32).


  24. MAN: So, you're now a Barrister?


  25. PETER: Yes. I've graduated. I work for the government as a salaried employee. I'm not in private practice.


  26. Pausing.


  27. MAN: I've recently inherited a landed property from ancestors. But the sitting tenants don't recognise me as the new landlord and refuse to pay any rent to me.


  28. PETER: The tenants are obliged to pay rent to the landlord or his successor-in-title.


  29. MAN: What can I do?


  30. PETER: There're a range of options you can take. I write them down and let you consider.


  31. MONTAGE OF THE MAN SEEKING PETER'S ADVICE FROM TIME TO TIME


  32. A. Peter visits the Man's village house and they talk, while Man's family MEMBERS don't say anything.


  33. B. Meeting the Man in urban area, Peter advises him.


  34. END MONTAGE


  35. EXT. ROADS-PARK - DAY (Autumn 1992)


  36. From office buildings, Peter is walking towards a park.


  37. PETER (V.O.): He wants to meet me urgently. I believe he wants to show his sympathetic support as my wife has passed away weeks ago.


  38. Inside the park, Peter meets the Man who immediately and solemnly shows him a document.


  39. Man: I'm being sued...


  40. Peter reads the document.


  41. PETER: Oh, it's writ. Who're the plaintiffs?


  42. MAN: They live in the premises...


  43. PETER: You mean they're your tenants?


  44. Peter continues to read the document.


  45. PETER: Oh, they're actually disputing your title to the landed property! Are their allegations true or false?


  46. MAN (Dismissively): The Land Registrar wrongly thought I was entitled to inherit the property and had mistakenly registered me as the new landlord...


  47. PETER (Enlightened): If so, there's no defence but to admit the facts to save costs.


  48. MAN: But, it's you who have dragged me into this legal trouble...


  49. RETURN TO PRESENT


  50. Act 3


  51. INT. STUDY - CONTINUOUS

  52. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): That's how I fell for it, hook, line and sinker. The expression doesn't mean anything to me initially as I don't fish.


  53. Pausing.


  54. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Fishing is a trickery game, building on the pain and suffering of fish.


  55. Pausing.


  56. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Since then, we haven't re-engaged - unhooked, no line nor sinker.


  57. Peter begins to type on his phone.


  58. EXT. ROADS - EVENING


  59. In a three-piece suit and carrying a brief case, Peter leaves a skyscraper.


  60. PETER (V.O.): What a hectic afternoon...


  61. Phone rings and Peter takes it.


  62. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Another assignment. Fewer time to engage Quorans.


  63. Peter continues to talk to the phone.


  64. FADE OUT.


  65. THE END



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