Jennifer 8

Synopsis: A big-city cop from L.A. moves to a small-town police force and immediately finds himself investigating a murder. Using theories rejected by his colleagues, the cop, John Berlin, meets a young blind woman named Helena, who he is attracted to. Meanwhile, a serial killer is on the loose and only John knows it.
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Director(s): Bruce Robinson
Production: Paramount Home Video
  5 wins.
Rotten Tomatoes:
124 min

June 1991


The Church of St. Peter Los Angeles. "WHOEVER YOU SEE HERE -

WHATEVER YOU HEAR HERE - STAYS HERE." That's a notice on a

wall. Here's another notice "NO SMOKING." Everyone is smok-

ing. This is an AA meeting. There's a lot of Faces to look

at. I don't know when we'll get to the one that's talking,

but when we do it's like this. Eyes like glue. 50 years old

with a face the color of a snuff-users hanky. He says this:


.. after my third recovery my wife made

me swear I'd never bring another bottle

into the house. And I never did. I bur-

ied it under the lawn. Cut out a turf &

stood it upright with a piece of tin-

foil instead of a cork. So here we are

out in the yard, and she's happy because

I'm getting healthy in a pair of swim-

ing shorts & no way near no booze. She

decides to prune the roses. Meanwhile,

I'm laying there with a straw stuck in-

to the fucken lawn doing a quart of red ..

Curious thing about drunks. Their disease often amuses them.

That's how crazy I was - I was sick for

half a life till I finally found my san-

ity again in these rooms. Don't take that

drink - And for the one or two new faces

I see here, I say this: just do it by the

day. You gotta do it by the day - Don't

take that drink. And keep coming to these

meetings. Because here is where it works ..


Thank you, Benny .. We have a few more

minutes .. Anyone else like to share? ..

Ash into an ashtray and now a face. He's around 40 years old.

Intense eyes & dark hair. Probably good looking when the ang-

le's right. But this is a bad angle. His name is JOHN BERLIN.


My name's John .. and I'm an alcoholic ..


Hi, John.


I didn't intend to speak today. Matter of

fact, I wasn't gonna come to the meeting ..

But I wanna say a couple of things I hope

may be of use, particularly as Benny says,

to the new faces here. I first came into

this fellowship ten months ago. I came to

a meeting I was convinced was gonna be my

last - how could a buncha drunks help me? -

Then someone got up, I think it was Micky,

and described himself as "the sh*t around

which the universe revolved." I don't know

if that was original to him - it doesn't

matter, it was the first time I'd heard it,

and I still can't think of a better way to

describe how I felt - We all have our own

place in the darkness, and I was in such a

mess I could hardly fucken see - I'd lost

someone very dear to me - she hadn't died -

I had - I don't know whether she left coza

the drinking, or whether I drank coz I knew

she was gonna leave - either way, the booze

won - I replaced her with alcohol & anger -

I was angry with her, myself, everyone and

everything - Where I was I wanted to be

someplace else - any place but here - any

moment but now - But here I am, and it is

now, and there's a big change about to hap-

pen in my life - and I'm going for it coz

this time I know I'm not running away - I'm

actually two miles into a 600 mile journey,

and I feel good about myself going there -

So I stopped off to share that with you -

and to thank everyone of you, and everyone

in this fellowship for letting me walk out

of here, free ..


High above the Golden Gate. Too high for specifics. But there

is something down there of interest to the Camera. Descending

with the Music it seems to isolate a particular car. Too many

and too distant to know which it is. But the Camera is follow-

ing and already a mile up the 101 Interstate travelling north.

Maybe via a dissolve. And maybe not. But red and white either

way as the headlights are coming on. The Camera is closing on

the highway. And a car has definitely been selected. There is

nothing much of interest about it. It's a blue Mercedes sedan.

Mussorgsky will choreograph the pace of these cuts. The first

puts the frame directly in front of the car. In a few moments

its brights snap up. And Titles continue in a dazzle of light.


Nobody in the car except BERLIN. And a lot of cigarette smoke.

Just time to wedge in a P.O.V. There's an intersection coming

up. He hits the indicators and crosses lanes winding his wind-

ow down. Takes a last hit at his cigarette and exits the butt.


An instant of red as the cigarette shatters up the highway. A

heavy sky of red and black cloud. The Mercedes turns off head-

ing east. This time the Camera doesn't follow. Remains static

over the intersection until the tail lights finally disappear.


Bare wooden boards and the sound of singing birds. This house

hasn't been lived in for years. No furniture other than a new

mattress in the middle of the floor. Still in polythene wraps.

BERLIN just about awake on top of it. Ten seconds of disorien-

tation while he puts this together. A stone fireplace. Stairs

leading to what's got to be a tiny room above. With enough ef-

fort this place could be charming. But right now it's a wreck.


This kitchen was out of date by 1963. A huge china sink and a

fat fridge. But the cooker works and a battered old kettle is

already on the gas. T-shirt and instant coffee. BERLIN checks

cupboards out. Crockery includes a cup and that'll do for now.

His lips articulate a silent expletive. The gas has just gone

out. Tries to relight it without success. On hands & knees he

explores a rubber supply pipe that snakes under the back door.


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Bruce Robinson

Bruce Robinson (born 2 May 1946) is an English director, screenwriter, novelist and actor. He is arguably most famous for writing and directing the cult classic Withnail and I (1987), a film with comic and tragic elements set in London in the 1960s, which drew on his experiences as "a chronic alcoholic and resting actor, living in squalor" in Camden Town. more…

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Submitted by shilobe on March 28, 2017

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