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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Profoundly Beautiful

  1. FADE IN

  2. Act 1

  3. INT. BEDROOM - 03:00

  4. In bed, PETER is chatting with his WIFE sleepily.

  5. PETER: "Drive My Car" also won this year's Best International Film.

  6. PETER (V.O.): In recommending the film to her, I told her it had won the Best Screenplay in Cannes Film Festival 2021.

  7. Recalling.

  8. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): After watching the film, we agreed that it was a very good one.

  9. Pausing.

  10. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Even the film's running time is almost 3-hour long, it has kept us engaged.

  11. Pausing.

  12. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I'm surprised that my wife would continue to research on the film's further particulars.

  13. Act 2


  15. INT. CINEMA - NIGHT (Yesterday)

  16. Brief and boring end credits are being shown. Nobody leaves until the lights are on.

  17. PETER (V.O.): All are still reflecting on the film's ending.

  18. Gent's toilet.

  19. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I wasn't desperate.


  21. Peter and his wife are having yakiniku.

  22. WIFE: It's great that our walk-in here was smooth.

  23. PETER: I feel as if we're in Japan, having just done long hours of motoring.

  24. WIFE: Yes, the film's road tunnel scenes trigger my memory too.

  25. PETER: Driving through the road tunnels without falling asleep is always a challenge.

  26. WIFE: As depicted in the film, how long does it take to drive from Hiroshima to Akabira?

  27. PETER: The longest one we did was from Tokyo to Aomori...

  28. Peter's wife surfs Google Maps.

  29. WIFE: 27 hours.

  30. PETER: Wow, but drivers can rest during their ferry trip from Honshu to Hokkaido.

  31. PETER (V.O.): We've been to Hiroshima, but didn't visit any garbage factory there.

  32. Pausing.

  33. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): We've been to many exotic places in Hokkaido and wouldn't care about whereabout is Akabira.


  35. Peter is driving. His wife is glued to her smart phone.

  36. WIFE: The actress playing the character of the driver only learned to drive when she got the part.

  37. PETER: She acts with her expressive eyes.

  38. PETER (V.O.): Her role reminds me of the years when I was driven to work...But we didn't smoke.

  39. PETER (Cont'd): It has never occurred to me that a car's sunroof can be used to keep the cigarette smoke out of the car...

  40. WIFE: Yes, the cigarette scene, what does that mean?

  41. PETER: It's metaphorical. The leading characters find common understanding.

  42. PETER (V.O.): Not everything we watched in the film is readily understood.

  43. Reflecting.

  44. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The challenge of screenwriting is to say much in little, maintaining the flow of the sequence and keeping the audience engaged.

  45. Pausing.

  46. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I find the sign-language scene before the closing image is profoundly beautiful.

  47. Thinking.

  48. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): But the film's Act 1 is meandering and the first part of Act 2 is slow-moving. Some scenes may be edited to have a quicker pace.

  49. Pondering.

  50. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): But if the scenes are shortened, the audience won't have the time to indulge on the small observational moments of the characters' developments.

  51. Pausing.

  52. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): As it is, the film has missed Oscar's Best Picture.


  54. Act 3

  55. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): To make a fine film, the producer and the director need a great screenplay.

  56. Pausing.

  57. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): The scenes of the towns in Hiroshima and Akabira aren't beautiful. But the portraying of the loneliness and mental struggle of the lead characters are profoundly so.

  58. Pausing.

  59. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Apart from resolving the tensions in life with imagination, the film has also instilled hope for a better future.

  60. Pausing.

  61. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Meanwhile, no one would drive my lip-red coupe, except my car repairers.

  62. Peter sleeps.

  63. FADE OUT

  64. THE END

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