Sugarcane | Script Revolution

Sugarcane

SUGARCANE
A middle-aged man travels to a storage facility to retrieve his stolen safe and soon discovers
that the owner of the facility has much darker plans in store for him.

Storage facilities inherently entail a sense of mystery about them. Each unit contains items that range from the mundane and trivial to sentimental and cryptic. Within the confines of these spaces you will find echoes and artifacts of a person’s life. Objects that often have an interesting story or history behind them. Some items may be imbued with a story tied to a painful memory. Other times, it might be that the vestige contains sickening acts of evil best kept concealed.

Adam Lennon’s ‘Sugarcane’ takes the general premise of hiding secrets in storage and unpacks a searing, unsettling narrative that gets under the skin.

The story begins with Jeff, a pallid man in his 30s, who is invited to a storage facility where it is believed one of the units packed with personal valuables that have been stolen. Jeff is a victim of one such burglary and has come to collect what was once his.

An attendant for the facility, named Roosevelt – an African American man in his 70s – escorts Jeff to reclaim his stolen possessions; a safe and set of tools.

As they start to rummage through the unit, it becomes clear that Jeff is a smidge nervous. Indeed, once they find the small safe, Jeff simply wants to grab it and go. No fuss no muss. Yet..

ROOSEVELT
 All right… let’s find those tools of yours
so we can get you on your way.

                  Roosevelt starts to rummage around.

JEFF
You know what… why don’t you just keep the tools.
It’s the least I can do. Honestly.

ROOSEVELT
Well, that's very generous of you,
but I’ve got enough tools to fill every
damn unit in this place.   

Roosevelt continues to search. Jeff becomes antsy.

JEFF
(looks at his watch)
Oh, wow. I didn’t realize how late it was.
I’ve actually got a meeting I can’t be late to.
Do you mind if  I just grab the safe and
come back later for those tools?

From this point, the conversation between Roosevelt and Jeff takes an unusual turn, as the storage facility attendant starts to pepper Jeff with questions about his family. Probing and prying. Which seems to put Jeff on his back foot. The more Roosevelt talks, Jeff’s anxiety increases. Clearly, he just wants to get away from the facility with his safe in tow.

After more awkward silences and stalling, a sickening terror overtakes Jeff. Like a lamb, silently waiting for the wolf to attack. And when that attack comes… it’s chilling and visceral.

ROOSEVELT
You know Jeff, I’ve been around a while.
A long, long while. And I’ve done things.
Good things. Bad things. I’d like to think the
scale is tipped toward the good, but who knows.
Thing is, when you do bad things, you see
bad things. Over the years, I’ve been able to
unsee many of those bad things. Only way I can
sleep at night. But lately, Jeff, lately I can’t sleep
a damn wink, and I feel like my eyes are just gonna
POP right outta their goddamn sockets at any moment.
(takes a puff on his cig)
…and to be honest, I’m worried, Jeff, I’m worried that
I may never sleep again –because no matter
how hard I try, no matter how hard I pray, I can’t
unsee what I found… on this…

                  Roosevelt pulls out a flash-drive from his pocket.        

                  Jeff’s face falls.

The tables are turned, as Roosevelt reveals what was in the safe. And those alleged horrors he cannot unsee, are the kind that would make the blood boil. The kind what might just turn an ordinary man into a vigilante, intent on carrying out their own form of trial and judgement. Not to mention, a punishment akin to the abominable crimes committed by the perpetrator. Atrocities beyond redemption.

Lennon’s short screenplay is replete with thorny tension and creeping dread, as the story comes to it’s disturbing, yet well earned conclusion. For filmmakers who are looking for a limited location short, with a thrilling plot, fascinating characterization, and sizzling dialog, then look no further. This short is ready to go in front of the camera right now. Don’t hesitate, as Sugarcane is a bitter sweet tale that will blow festival-going audiences away.

 

The Script

Sugarcane

A middle-aged man travels to a storage facility to retrieve his stolen safe and soon discovers that the owner of the facility has much darker plans in store for him.

About The Reviewer

J.B. Storey's picture
Real name: 

I originally hail from the UK, but now reside in Seattle, WA.

Over the years I've written award-winning feature length & short screenplays. As well as award-winning stage plays (Last Cup of Sorrow, Wolves at the Door).

I've had four pieces of my work produced for screen and stage: An Angel Whispers (short film), Adrifting (short film), Good Deeds (short film), and Last Cup of Sorrow (stage play).

These days I write, because it's a creative outlet, and I enjoy the...Read more

About The Writer

Adam Lennon's picture
Real name: 

I first started to dabble in screenwriting back in 2015, and a few of those dabbles landed me a couple bollywood gigs (long story). I am currently working on a documentary series about mental illness, and in my spare time I try to get as much writing in as possible. 

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