Smoke script
Smoke (1995)
Synopsis: Smoke is a 1995 American independent film by Wayne Wang and Paul Auster. The original story was written by Paul Auster, who also wrote the screenplay. The film was produced by Hisami Kuroiwa, Harvey Weinstein and Bob Weinstein and directed by Wayne Wang. Among others, it features Harvey Keitel, William Hurt, Victor Argo, Forest Whitaker, Ashley Judd, Stockard Channing and Harold Perrineau Jr..

1.EXT:
DAY. ELEVATED SUBWAY TRAIN

Against the backdrop of the Manhattan skyline, we see an elevated

subway train heading toward Brooklyn.

After a moment, we begin to hear voices. An animated discussion is

taking place inside the Brooklyn Cigar Company.

2. INT:
DAY. THE BROOKLYN CIGAR CO.

The cigar shop from within. Displays of cigar boxes, a wall of

magazines, piles of newspapers. cigarettes, smoking paraphernalia. On

the walls, we see framed black-and-white photographs of people smoking

cigars:
Groucho Marx, George Burns, Clint Eastwood, Edward G. Robinson,

Orson Welles, Charles Laughton, Frankenstein's monster, Leslie Caron,

Ernie Kovacs.

Words appear on the screen: "SUMMER 1990."

AUGGIE WREN is behind the counter. Somewhere between forty and fifty

years old, AUGGIE is a scruffy presence: unkempt hair, a two-day

stubble of beard, dressed in blue jeans and a black T-shirt. We see an

intricate tattoo on one arm.

It is a slow hour. AUGGIE is flipping through a photography magazine.

Near the counter are the three OTB MEN. These are local characters who

like to hang out in the store, shooting the breeze with AUGGIE. One is

black (TOMMY) and the other two are white (JERRY and DENNIS). DENNIS

wears a T-shirt with the following words printed across the front: "If

life is a dream, what happens when I wake up?"

TOMMY:

I'll tell you why they're not going anywhere.

JERRY:

Yeah? And why is that?

TOMMY:

Management. Those guys are walking around with

their heads up their asses.

DENNIS:

They made some great deals. Tommy. Hernandez.

Carter. Without those two, there never woulda

been no World Series.

TOMMY:

That was four years ago. I'm talking about now.

(Growing more intense)

Look who they got rid of. Mitchell. Backman.

McDowell. Dykstra. Aguillera. Mookie. Mookie

Wilson, for Chrissakes.

(Shakes his head)

JERRY:

(Sarcastically)

And Nolan Ryan. Don't forget him.

DENNIS:

(Chiming in)

Yeah. And Amos Otis.

TOMMY:

(Shrugs)

Okay, joke about it. I don't give a shit.

JERRY:

Jesus, Tommy, it ain't science, you know. You

got your good trades and your bad trades.

That's how it works.

TOMMY:

They didn't have to do a thing, that's all I'm

saying. The team was good, the best fucking

team in baseball. But then they had to screw it

up.

(Pause)

They traded their birthright for a mess of

porridge.

(Shakes his head)

A mess of porridge.

The bells on the door jangle as someone enters. It is AUGGIE'S protégé,

JIMMY ROSE, a mentally retarded man in his late twenties. He has been

sweeping the sidewalk outside the store and holds a broom in his right

hand.

AUGGIE:

How'd you do out there, Jimmy?

JIMMY:

Good, Auggie. Real good.

(Proudly thrusts out broom)

All finished.

AUGGIE:

(Philosophically)

It'll never be finished.

JIMMY:

(Confused)

Huh?

AUGGIE:

That's how it is with sidewalks. People come,

people go, and they all drop shit on the

ground. As soon as you clean up one spot and

move on to the next, the first spot is dirty

again.

JIMMY:

(Trying to digest AUGGIE'S comment)

I just do what you tell me, Auggie. You tell me

to sweep, so I sweep.

The bells on the door jangle again, and a customer enters the store: a

middle-class man in his early thirties. He walks to the counter as

JERRY teases JIMMY. In the background, we see him talking to AUGGIE.

AUGGIE pulls some cigar boxes out of the display case and puts them on

the counter for the YOUNG MAN to inspect. In the foreground we see:

JERRY:

(Interrupting. Playfully)

Hey, Jimmy. You got the time?

JIMMY:

(Turning to the SECOND OTB MAN)

Huh?

JERRY:

You still have that watch Auggie gave you?

JIMMY:

(Holds up left wrist showing

cheap digital watch. Smiles)

Tick-tock, tick-tock.

JERRY:

So what's the time?

JIMMY:

(Studying watch)

Twelve-eleven.

(Pause, marveling as

the numbers change)

Twelve-twelve.

(Looks up, smiling)

Twelve-twelve.

A sudden outburst is heard from the area near the counter.

YOUNG MAN:

(Aghast)

Ninety-two dollars?

The focus of the scene shifts to AUGGIE and the YOUNG MAN.

AUGGIE:

They don't come cheap, son. These little honeys

are works of art. Rolled by hand in a tropical

climate, most likely by an eighteen year old

girl in a thin cotton dress with no underwear

on. Little beads of sweat forming in her naked

cleavage. The smooth, delicate fingers nimbly

turning out one masterpiece after another...

YOUNG MAN:

(Pointing)

And how much are these?

AUGGIE:

Seventy-eight dollars. The girl who rolled these

was probably wearing panties.

YOUNG MAN:

(Pointing)

And these?

AUGGIE:

Fifty-six. That girl had on a corset.

YOUNG MAN:

(Pointing)

And these?

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Paul Auster

Paul Benjamin Auster (born February 3, 1947) is an American author and director whose writing blends absurdism, existentialism, crime fiction, and the search for identity and personal meaning in works such as The New York Trilogy (1987), Moon Palace (1989), The Music of Chance (1990), The Book of Illusions (2002), and The Brooklyn Follies (2005). His books have been translated into more than forty languages. more…

All Paul Auster scripts | Paul Auster Books

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"Smoke" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 25 Nov. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/smoke_739>.

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