Ordinary People script
Synopsis: Tormented by guilt following the death of his older brother, Buck, in a sailing accident, alienated teenager Conrad Jarrett (Timothy Hutton) attempts suicide. Returning home following an extended stay in a psychiatric hospital, Conrad tries to deal with his mental anguish and also reconnect with his mother, Beth (Mary Tyler Moore), who has grown cold and angry, and his emotionally wounded father, Calvin (Donald Sutherland), with the help of his psychiatrist, Dr. Berger (Judd Hirsch).

1 EXT. BEAUTIFUL COUNTRYSIDE, SMALL TOWN ­ DAY 1

Small beautiful country town in the fall, on the shore of a

great lake. Close in on school. [Music: Canon in D by

Pachelbel, and angel voices singing then: ]

CHOIR:

(OS:
young male voices)

In the silence of our souls,

O Lord, we contemplate Thy peace

2 INT. SCHOOL HALL, CHOIR ­ DAY 2

Students' choir rehearsing Canon in D by Pachelbel (not

originally written with lyrics). Among many, Conrad is

singing. He is just behind Jeannine Pratt. They don't know

each other yet.

CHOIR:

(girls and boys

together)

Free from all the world's desires

Free of fear and all anxiety

Ooooh. Ooooh

Ooooh. Ooooh

Alleluia

Alleluia

Sing Alleluia!

[Close in on Conrad]

3 INT. CONRAD'S BEDROOM - NIGHT 3

Conrad suddenly wakes up from nightmare

4 INT. THEATER PLAY - ON STAGE - NIGHT 4

A man of fifty is holding his wife's hand over the breakfast

table.

MAN:

Do you know we've made love one

hundred and thirteen times?

We hear laughter (numerous).

MAN (cont'd)

I figured it out on my Bowmar

calculator.

(CONTINUED)

5.

4 CONTINUED:
4

Laughter again. The man and the woman are two actors on stage

of the local theater. A very conventional play. The set

represents an average American kitchen. A man and a woman are

having coffee. Man is holding woman's hand.

We gradually discover the audience of the theater.

MAN (cont'd)

To know someone that well is a

wonderful thing.

Pause

MAN (cont'd)

Two lumps?

[ close in on two couples in the audience] Beth and Calvin

and their friends. The women are amused, the men trying to

keep awake.

WOMAN:

No, one.

MAN:

So I don't know everything about

you. I don't know your favorite

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Alvin Sargent

Alvin Sargent (born April 12, 1927) is an American screenwriter. He has won two Academy Awards in 1978 and 1981 for his screenplays of Julia and Ordinary People. His most popular contribution has been being involved in the writing of most of the films in Sony's Spider-Man film series (The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is the first exception to this). more…

All Alvin Sargent scripts | Alvin Sargent Books

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"Ordinary People" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 12 Dec. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/ordinary_people_162>.

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