INT. PUBLISHING HOUSE RECEPTION AREA - DAY
It's grand and modern. Random House-Knopf-Taschen is etched
on the wall in large gold letters. An old woman enters
carrying a tattered manuscript, maybe a thousand pages. She
seems haunted, hollow-eyed, sickly. The young receptionist,
dressed in a shiny, stretchy one-piece pantsuit, looks up.
Hi, I was in the neighborhood and thought
I'd see --
I think he's in a conference.
Unfortunately. I'm really sorry.
Would you just try him? You never know.
As long as I'm here. You never know.
Of course. Please have a seat.
The old woman smiles and sits, the bulky manuscript on her
lap. She stares politely straight ahead.
(quietly into headset)
It's her -- I know, but couldn't you just
-- Yes, I know, but -- I know, but she's
old and it would be a nice -- Yes, sorry.
(to old woman)
I'm sorry, ma'am, he's not in right now.
It's a crazy time of year for us.
The receptionist gestures toward a Christmas tree in the
corner. Its ornaments are holograms.
This book -- It's essential that people
read it because --
(gravely, patting the
-- It's the truth. And only I know it.
Maybe after the holidays then.
INT. TILED HALLWAY - DAY
The old woman carries her manuscript haltingly down a subway
hall. She stops to catch her breath, then continues and
passes several archway with letters printed above them. When
she arrives at one topped by an LL, she slips a card in a
slot. A plastic molded chair drops into the archway. She
sits in the chair; it rises.
INT. TUBE -DAY
The woman is still in the chair as it slips gracefully into a
line of chairs shooting through a glass tube. The other
chairs are peopled with commuters. We stay with the woman as
she and the others travel over New York City in the tube.
There are hundreds of these commuter tubes crisscrossing the
skyline. The woman glances at the manuscript in her lap.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
This serves as the movie's opening title. The other credits
follow, as the old woman studies commuters in passing tubes.
Their faces are variously harsh and sad and lonely and blank.
INT. WAITING ROOM - DAY
FIFTY YEARS EARLIER
Every doctor's office waiting room: chairs against the wall,
magazines on end tables, a sad-looking potted plant, generic
seascape paintings on the walls. The receptionist, Mary, 25,
can be seen typing in the reception area. Behind her are
shelves and shelves of medical files. The door opens and
Clementine enters. She's in her early thirties, zaftig in a
faux fur winter coat over an orange hooded sweatshirt. She's
decidedly funky and has blue hair. Mary looks up.
May I help you?
(approaching reception area)
Yeah, hi, I have a one o'clock with Dr.
Mierzwiak. Clementine Kruczynski.
Yes, please have a seat. He'll be right
Clementine sits. She looks tired, maybe hungover. She picks
up a magazine at random and thumbs without interest.
INT. INNER OFFICE AREA - CONTINUOUS
Mary pads down the hallway. She knocks on a closed door.
Mary opens the door, peeks in. Howard Mierzwiak, 40's,
professional, dry, sits behind his desk studying some papers.
Howard, your one o'clock.
(not looking up)
Thanks, Mary. You can bring her in.
She smiles and nods. It's clear she's in love. It's equally
clear that Mierzwiak doesn't have a clue. Mary turns to