Absolute Power script
Synopsis: While robbing the home of aging billionaire Walter Sullivan (E.G. Marshall), Luther Whitney (Clint Eastwood) is interrupted by an amorous couple entering the building. As Whitney hides, he sees Sullivan's young wife, Christy (Melora Hardin), and the U.S. President, Alan Richmond (Gene Hackman). When their affection turns violent, Christy is killed by the Secret Service. Although Whitney flees, he is framed for the murder. Now, he seeks justice with the help of detective Seth Frank (Ed Harris).

FADE IN:

1

INT. WASHINGTON MUSEUM -DAY 1

The saddest eyes you ever saw.

We are looking at an El Greco drawing. It is a study for

one of his paintings.

PULL BACK TO REVEAL -A

bunch of art students are doing sketches of the eyes,

the elongated fingers, the slender hands El Greco drew so

brilliantly.

Most of the students are around 20. A couple of suburban

housewives are there too.

And one older man.

This is LUTHER WHITNEY. Mid 60s, very fit, neatly

dressed. At quick glance, he seems as if he might be a

successful company executive.

As we watch him draw we can tell he is capable of great

concentration. And patient. With eyes that miss

nothing:
He has pilot’s eyes.

We’ll find out more about him as time goes on, but this

is all you really have to know: Luther Whitney is the

hero of this piece. As we watch him draw -

Luther’s sketchbook. He is finishing his work on the

eyes, and he’s caught the sadness: It’s good stuff.

Luther. It’s not good enough for him. He looks at his

work a moment, shakes his head.

GIRL STUDENT:

Don’t give up.

LUTHER:

I never do.

GIRL STUDENT:

May I?

She’s indicated his sketchbook. He nods. She starts

thumbing through.

The sketchbook as the pages turn.

Detail work. Eyes and hands. The eyes are good. The

hands are better. Very skillful.

(CONTINUED)

)B( ABSOLUTE POWER -Rev. 5/16/96 2.

1 CONTINUED:
1

The GIRL hands it back. Impressed.

GIRL STUDENT:

You work with your hands, don’t

you?

CLOSEUP -LUTHER *

An enigmatic smile. Now, from that -2

EXT. RED’S BAR -DAY 2

A nice working class part of town. Nothing fancy here

but there’s a pleasant feel. The streets are clean, the

houses neat and well tended.

Luther, carrying his sketchbook, walks along. It’s

afternoon now. Up ahead is a local bar: RED’S.

3 INT. RED’S BAR -DAY 3

Luther walks in. Nothing fancy here. Strictly working

class. And relatively empty. An overweight bald man

Luther’s age works behind the bar. This is RED. They

are good enough friends not to ask each other questions.

LUTHER:

(as they nod to

each other)

Redhead.

RED:

Luther.

(as Luther hands

him a videotape)

Your life would be a whole lot

simpler if you could learn to

operate a V.C.R.

LUTHER:

My only failing.

As he turns -4

EXT. NEIGHBORHOOD -LUTHER’S HOUSE -DAY 4

A street of small row houses. Clean, well tended.

Luther walks toward one. Later in the afternoon. He

carries half a dozen small shopping bags, from the

market, the hardware store, the drug store, the cleaners.

3.

5 EXT. LUTHER’S HOUSE -DAY 5

A terra cotta planter to the right of the front door.

Luther shifts his packages, tilts the planter slightly,

bends down, pulls out a key, inserts it in the front

door.

6 INT. LUTHER’S HOUSE -KITCHEN -DAY 6

as he enters. Neat, tidy. A Cuisinart, a cheese slicer,

lots of other nice equipment. As he begins putting food

away -

7 INT. LUTHER’S HOUSE -DINING AREA -NIGHT 7

Evening now. Table set for one. A single candle.

Beside the candle is Luther’s sketch pad. Now Luther

himself moves INTO VIEW, carrying a tray. He puts it

down.

A gorgeous omelet is on a fine china plate, parsley

sprinkled neatly on top. An elegant green salad is on

another plate, covered with thinly sliced parmesan

cheese. An expensive water pitcher, a lovely glass.

Clearly, a great deal of thought has gone into dinner.

Luther lights the single candle. We are now aware of a

photograph nearby. The picture is old. A pretty little

girl stands in the center, smiling. Her mother stands

alongside, smiling too. A man is with them, looking at

them happily. It’s Luther. When he was young.

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William Goldman

William Goldman (born August 12, 1931) is an American novelist, playwright, and screenwriter. He came to prominence in the 1950s as a novelist, before turning to writing for film. He has won two Academy Awards for his screenplays, first for the western Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and again for All the President's Men (1976), about journalists who broke the Watergate scandal of President Richard Nixon. Both films starred Robert Redford. more…

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"Absolute Power" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 13 Dec. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/absolute_power_331>.

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