Artic Blue Script

 

ARCTIC BLUE

 

Original screenplay 

by 

Ross LaManna


ARCTIC BLUE

FADE IN:
 
1    EXT.  BOREAL FOREST - ALASKA - (AERIAL SHOT) - DAY
 
Flying.  Not at the intangible height of a jet, but at
 
spitting distance from the treetops.  We're in central
 
Alaska, the Big Lonely, just north of the Arctic Circle.
 
A thick forest follows the contours of mountain foothills
 
like a deep-pile carpet.  Up at tree line the forest thins to
 
tundra, a grassy scruff turning red and yellow with the
 
coming of autumn.
 
On the horizon, the hills rise to meet the Endicott
 
Mountains, a great fortress wall of granite so sharp and
 
jagged that snow cannot stick to its face.  This is how all
 
North America once looked -- raw, indomitable.
 
Then, abruptly coming into the SCENE is a colossal etching
 
across the landscape too deliberate to be of natural origin.
 
Bisecting this country like a metallic ribbon -- or a scar,
 
depending on your point of view -- is the 800-mile-long
 
Trans-Alaskan Pipeline.
 
Even the immensity of the pipeline is rendered insignificant
 
by the vastness of the land.  It goes on, and on, and on...
 
DISSOLVE TO:
 
A lone MAN walks along the Haul Road, a one-lane gravel
 
trail running parallel to the pipeline.  The weather turns
 
sour -- rough wind and stinging snow cut across the man's
 
path.
 
DISSOLVE TO:
 
The man is ERIC DESMOND, twenty-four, clean-shaven,
 
determined.  He's clearly out of place here, dressed in a
 
business suit and a light, camel-hair topcoat.
 
Eric is trying to follow some footprints in the snow -- a
 
predator's tracks, those of a wolf or coyote.  But the
 
footprints ahead have faded, covered by the snow and wind.
 
DISSOLVE TO:
 
The weather becomes more oppressive.  Heavy snow, gale winds
 
and sub-zero temperatures make his progress tortuous.  Eric
 
strives stubbornly forward.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
1    CONTINUED:
 
DISSOLVE TO:
 
Eric has gathered some branches.  He tries to make a fire.
 
Moisture from his breath has frozen in the upturned collar
 
of his insufficient coat, and his skin is split raw from the
 
cold.
 
His hands are too numb to hold the matches.  After several
 
attempts at striking one, he slumps down next to the pile of
 
wood, exhausted and frustrated.
 
DISSOLVE TO:
 
The snow has covered the pile of branches.  Eric still sits
 
next to it, partially covered in snow himself.
 
ERIC
 
His face is a death mask: eyes half-open and dull, lips a
 
purplish blue, bloodless skin crystallizing as it ices over.
 
The wind HOWLS around him.  The snow sticks to his eyelashes
 
and hair without melting.
 
                                             
 
                                             END DREAM
 
2    INT.  DARK BEDROOM - NIGHT
 
Eric bolts up in bed.  Next to him, ANNE MARIE GAUVIN sits
 
up and hugs him.  All that can be seen of her in the dark is
 
a lovely silhouette and a cascade of dark hair.  After a
 
moment, Eric kisses her.  He shakes off the dream and lies
 
back down.
 
3    EXT.  HAUL ROAD AND PIPELINE - CLOSE - DAY
 
A metal sign, peppered with shotgun holes, is posted near a
 
pipeline support piling:
 
                              
 
                  PIPELINE UTILITY CORRIDOR
 
                      PRIVATE PROPERTY
 
                      NO   TRESPASSING
 
                      NO       HUNTING
 
                      NO      TRAPPING
 
                      NO      SHOOTING
 
WIDER
 
Eric walks quietly past the sign, intent on something ahead
 
of him.  Although still somewhat boyish in appearance, he's
 
confident and resolute in attitude.  His clothes have a
 
distinctly western feel: Lucchese boots, Levis 501's, Mahan
 
cotton shirt.  His down parka is unzipped in the sunny,
 
windless, forty-degree afternoon.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
3    CONTINUED:
 
He pauses, then brings to his shoulder a rifle with a
 
four-power scope mounted atop it.  He peers through the
 
scope.
 
HIS POV - THROUGH SCOPE
 
He puts the crosshairs on the shoulder flank of a big,
 
ivory-white timber wolf, fifty yards away.
 
BACK TO SCENE
 
Anne Marie stands beside Eric, a Nikon with a telephoto lens
 
in her hand, holding her breath in anticipation.  She's
 
twenty-three, pretty, with soft features and piercing blue
 
eyes.  She wears Eddie Bauer woman's gear like she was born
 
in it.
 
Eric expertly fixes his aim and slowly squeezes the trigger.
 
But instead of a loud retort, there is only the dull POP of
 
a CO2-powered dart gun.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
The tranquilizer dart finds its mark in the wolf's fleshy
 
shoulder.  The wolf takes off running, but almost
 
immediately slows, sits, then lies down.
 
Eric and Anne Marie hurry over to the wolf, who is breathing
 
deeply.  Eric kneels next to him and strokes his thick fur.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               What a beauty.
 
                   (to Anne Marie)
 
               Hand me the transmitter.
 
Anne Marie passes to Eric a tiny, weatherproof homing device
 
attached to a steel collar band.  Eric puts the collar
 
loosely around the wolf's neck and crimps it in place, all
 
the while TALKING soothingly to the semi-conscious animal.
 
Anne Marie smiles at Eric's tenderness and snaps some
 
photos.
 
With the collar in place and transmitter activated, Eric
 
backs away while the wolf tries to rouse itself from its
 
narcosis.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               He's coming around fine.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Be right back.  I left my
 
               camcorder in the car.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
3    CONTINUED:  (2)
 
FOLLOW ANNE MARIE
 
as she hurries back to their International Scout.  On the
 
door of the Scout is a stylized logo of an oil derrick,
 
under which are the words:
 
                              
 
                  NORTHLAND PETROLEUM CORP.
 
Anne Marie opens the hatchback and grabs a video camera.
 
ANGLE ON ERIC AND THE WOLF
 
Eric smiles as the wolf wobbles tentatively to his feet and
 
trots unsteadily away.  Near the tree line the wolf turns,
 
glances back at Eric and then disappears into the forest.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Anne Marie is taping the wolf's retreat.  Looking through
 
the viewfinder, she crosses a gully between a pipeline
 
piling and a rock formation.  Eric turns toward her and a
 
glint of light in the debris at her feet catches his eye.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Anne Marie!  Stop!
 
She glances down.  Something metal is half-buried in the
 
dead leaves and gravel.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Don't move.
 
Eric runs over.  He pokes at the object with a stick.  With
 
a SNAP, a steel leg trap chomps the stick in half.  Anne
 
Marie jumps back.  Eric brushes the dead leaves on the
 
ground behind her and she carefully backtracks out of the
 
gully.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Goddamn trappers!
 
He angrily rips the trap out of the ground, unearthing
 
several others attached to one another by a long chain.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Takes nerve, laying trap lines on
 
               restricted land.
 
Eric slips the scope off the dart rifle and climbs up the
 
pipeline on foot pegs to the top of an anchoring point.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
3    CONTINUED:  (3)
 
Using the scope as a telescope, he scans up and down the
 
Haul Road.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               What are you doing?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               He still might be around.  I saw
 
               fresh tire tracks coming in.
 
HIS POV - THROUGH SCOPE
 
The road and the pipeline stretch toward either horizon,
 
north and south.  In the distance, a jeep is parked on the
 
Haul Road.  Near it, a Man climbs down into another shallow
 
ravine.
 
BACK TO SCENE
 
Eric hurries down the foot pegs.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Man and a jeep, about a mile and
 
               a half down.
 
He jumps into the Scout.  Anne Marie stuffs her cameras into
 
the hatchback.  As soon as she climbs in, Eric tears out.
 
4    INT.  SCOUT - (MOVING SHOT)
 
It races along the dusty gravel road at 60 MPH.
 
5    EXT.  HAUL ROAD
 
Startled at the APPROACH of the Scout, the Trapper uproots
 
his traps and runs out of the ravine.  He WHISTLES and
 
another Trapper appears nearby.
 
6    INT.  TRAPPERS' JEEP
 
They pile into their dilapidated, all-terrain jeep.  It's
 
oddly well-equipped, however.  Bolted to the dashboard is an
 
expensive tape player and a beat-up radio beacon receiver
 
with a round locating screen.  They zoom off.
 
7    INT.  SCOUT - (MOVING SHOT)
 
Eric stomps on the gas.  The dust from the jeep obscures his
 
view but he's gaining on them anyway.  Anne Marie hangs on
 
and squints her eyes against the choking dust.
 
8    INT.  TRAPPERS' JEEP - (MOVING SHOT)
 
The driver is LEMALLE (35), a tall, ugly, raw-boned Canadian.
 
His entire outfit is made of animal hide.  He has long red
 
hair, and a reptilian face usually twisted into a sadistic
 
sneer.  While driving, he scans along the pipeline.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Where the fuck did you drop
 
               Corbett off?
 
In the passenger seat, MITCHELL (38), chews tobacco and
 
looks grim.  He's a squat, flat-faced Okie, with curly
 
matted hair and tired grey eyes.  He's dressed in a brown
 
long coat and has a Colt .45 Peacemaker in a quick-draw
 
holster strapped to his leg.  Despite his intimidating air,
 
confrontation is not his style.
 
He spots a figure up ahead, where the road crosses a muddy
 
creek.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               He's over there.
 
9    EXT.  HAUL ROAD
 
Turning sharply, the trappers' jeep splashes through the
 
creek bed without slowing.  Bouncing, it comes down hard
 
against the axle-deep bank at the creek's high water mark.
 
LeMalle tries to back out, but can't find traction in the
 
mud.
 
Eric stops the Scout thirty yards behind them.
 
10   INT.  SCOUT
 
Eric opens his door.  To Anne Marie:
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Stay here.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Be careful -- there're two of
 
               them.
 
Eric reaches in the back seat and hands something to Anne
 
Marie.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               If I unzip my parka, stick this
 
               out the window.
 
11   EXT.  HAUL ROAD
 
Eric confidently approaches the jeep.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
11   CONTINUED:
 
Then, a third trapper climbs from the creek.  He's got a
 
line of traps slung around his neck and a world of
 
experience on his face.  He's BEN CORBETT, a life-long
 
huntsman, somewhere past forty, weathered beyond his years.
 
He has a feral nose, thick beard and dark, smart, hunter's
 
eyes.  He wears a hooded cotton sweat shirt, cotton
 
coveralls and vapour-barrier mountain boots.  On his belt is
 
a holster rig cradling a .44 magnum revolver.
 
Eric slows down.  He didn't expect to face anyone as
 
formidable as Corbett.
 
12   INT. / EXT. JEEP
 
Emboldened by Corbett's presence, LeMalle reaches into the
 
back seat and grabs his 6.5 by 55 Swedish military carbine.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (to LeMalle)
 
               No shooting.  Let's see who's so
 
               interested in us.
 
Corbett has an incongruously affable voice.  He throws his
 
traps into the jeep, then strides closer toward Eric.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
                   (to Corbett)
 
               Ain't worth it, Ben...
 
13   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - CREEK CROSSING - LONG SHOT
 
As Corbett comes closer, Eric realizes this might not've
 
been a great idea.  Corbett squints his eyes and sniffs the
 
air, as if by this he can gauge his opponent's mettle.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               You got two counts against you --
 
               trapping out of season and
 
               poaching on restricted land.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Can't be much of a crime, if all
 
               they got minding the area is a
 
               cocky kid.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               I got your plate number, asshole.
 
               Maybe you feel like spending a
 
               few months in jail.
 
Corbett just smiles.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
13   CONTINUED:
 
But LeMalle, rankled, sticks the carbine out the jeep
 
window.
 
Seeing the rifle pointed at him, Eric freezes, then slowly
 
unzips his parka.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Ben?  Sure you don't want me to
 
               drop the fucker?
 
Corbett doesn't answer.  Then, his eyes narrow and he looks
 
past Eric at the Scout.
 
CORBETT'S POV
 
The passenger in the Scout sticks what looks like another
 
rifle out the window.
 
BACK TO SCENE
 
Eric quickly glances over his shoulder to make sure Anne
 
Marie's backing him up.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               You leave and don't come back,
 
               that's the end of it.
 
After a long moment, Corbett smiles again, then turns away
 
from Eric.  He motions LeMalle to the front of the jeep.
 
Frustrated, LeMalle slams back the safety on the carbine and
 
throws it in the back seat.
 
ANGLE ON TRAPPERS
 
Mitchell climbs into the jeep and starts the engine.
 
LeMalle and Corbett rock the jeep back and forth in the rut.
 
While pushing, Corbett rips the sole of his boot on a sharp
 
piece of granite.   He cusses and pushes harder.
 
14   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - CREEK CROSSING
 
Eric walks back to the Scout.  He feels the trappers' eyes
 
on his back, but forces himself not to hurry.
 
The trappers free their vehicle.  Corbett gets in the
 
driver's seat, and they take off.
 
15   INT.  SCOUT
 
Anne Marie's hands are shaking as she pulls the plastic
 
tranquilizer rifle back in the window.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
15   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (unnerved)
 
               Great idea -- pointing a lousy
 
               dart gun at some nut with a
 
               high-powered hunting rifle.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Bastards took off, though, didn't
 
               they?
 
16   EXT.  BOREAL FOREST - LATER THAT DAY
 
The trappers have left the flatlands of the Haul Road area.
 
Now their jeep climbs a pathway over the rolling foothills.
 
17   INT.  TRAPPERS' JEEP - (MOVING SHOT)
 
Corbett broods while driving.  Mitchell looks out the
 
window.  The silence makes LeMalle uncomfortable.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               All this fuckin' land, and we're
 
               locked out.  Makes me puke.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Jawing about it won't change it.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Three hundred seventy-five
 
               million acres in this state.  I'm
 
               real tired of runnin' into
 
               people.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               Then don't look to your left.
 
18   EXT.  SPORTSMEN'S CAMP
 
A brand-new Land Rover is parked on an alluvial fan in a
 
bend in a small river.  Scattered about is an assortment of
 
expensive camping gear, beer cans, spent shells and other
 
garbage.
 
Three toy-macho, vacationing SPORTSMEN are guzzling beer and
 
BLASTING fish in the shallow river with 12-gauge shotguns.
 
They look up and glower suspiciously as the jeep slows and
 
stops.
 
19   INT.  TRAPPERS' JEEP
 
LeMalle grabs his carbine.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Leave it here.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
19   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               Let's keep going.  We're only an
 
               hour from Devil's Cauldron.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (pats Mitchell's shoulder)
 
               Relax.  I just want to ask them
 
               how the hunting is.
 
20   EXT.  SPORTSMEN'S CAMP
 
Corbett gets out of the jeep.  He regards the Sportsmen,
 
their shotguns and their mess with ill-concealed contempt.
 
The Sportsmen clutch their weapons and watch Corbett.  He
 
walks around the camp, spotting a rubber-lined rucksack
 
stuffed with dead ermine.  After a long, tense moment,
 
Corbett smiles.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Looks like you've had some luck.
 
               Where's your guide?
 
                         
 
                         SPORTSMAN #1
 
               We're on our own, if it's any of
 
               your damn business.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (re ermine)
 
               You did real good.
 
He crouches next to the dead animals and strokes the fur.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
                   (to Corbett)
 
               No swinging shit.  They're over
 
               their goddamned limit.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (to Sportsmen)
 
               My friend is right.  Supposed to
 
               have a licensed guide when you're
 
               on this land, too.
 
                         
 
                         SPORTSMAN #1
 
               Hey, we paid our fuckin' permit
 
               fees.
 
LeMalle amuses himself by pissing in their campfire.  No one
 
notices that in the b.g., quiet Sportsman #3 unzips his
 
parka, exposing a .45 Peacemaker in a belt holster.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
20   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         SPORTSMAN #2
 
               I were you, I'd drive right on
 
               outta here again.  Now.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (calmly)
 
               This was my roaming land, 'til
 
               the government took it over.
 
               Only Innuit can hunt here now,
 
               and tourists, like you.
 
Corbett swings the rucksack of carcasses onto the hood of
 
the Land Rover.  Pissed, Sportsmen #1 and #2 step closer to
 
him.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing)
 
               According to tribal law, hunters
 
               passing through the land of
 
               another tribe can only take game
 
               to survive.  They can eat the
 
               meat, but have to surrender the
 
               hides.
 
LeMalle pulls a hunting knife and holds up one of the
 
ermine.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Want the meat?
 
                         
 
                         SPORTSMAN #1
 
               Fuck you, dirt ball.
 
Corbett chuckles and Mitchell spits.
 
WIDER
 
LeMalle digs through the camping goodies in the back of the
 
Land Rover, many still in their packages.  He helps himself
 
to some sandwiches and a 12-pack of beer.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               I say shoot 'em, bury 'em with
 
               their shiny new car.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
                   (to LeMalle)
 
               If you're gonna take something,
 
               take it and let's go.
 
Corbett looks down to fasten the top of the rucksack.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
20   CONTINUED:  (2)
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Suddenly, Sportsman #3 reaches inside his parka and pulls
 
the pistol.  He swings it toward LeMalle.
 
LeMalle looks up when he hears the HAMMER cock.
 
There is a deafeningly loud SHOT.
 
Sportsman #3 falls down dead at LeMalle's feet.
 
Off to one side, Corbett holds a huge, smoking .44 magnum
 
six-shooter in his hand.
 
Shotgun in hand, Sportsman #1 gauges his chances of blasting
 
Corbett.  Nil.  When Corbett turns to him, he lies the
 
weapon down.  Sportsman #2 rushes to his friend.
 
Looking bleak, Mitchell spits again.  Corbett crosses to
 
LeMalle and knocks from his hands the things he wanted to
 
steal.  Chastised, LeMalle smolders.  After a moment:
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (to Sportsmen)
 
               Put him in your truck.  Smell of
 
               blood will attract the bears.
 
                   (to trappers)
 
               Let's go.
 
As Corbett walks to the jeep, he's too angry to notice that
 
he's stepped in a patch of mud under the Land Rover.
 
Near the jeep, LeMalle stops and pulls them into a huddle.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               I don't believe in leavin'
 
               witnesses behind, Ben.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               It was self defence.  Leave it at
 
               that.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               You think those fucks will tell
 
               it that way?
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (ending the argument)
 
               We'll get a head start before
 
               they go crying to the law.
 
Corbett turns and FIRES two rounds from his .44 into the
 
engine of the Land Rover.  The Sportsmen stare and sputter.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
20   CONTINUED:  (3)
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing; to Sportsmen)
 
               You can pack out of here -- two,
 
               three days' hike along this river
 
               at most.  Weather should hold
 
               this early in the season.
 
Corbett and Mitchell get in their jeep.
 
LEMALLE
 
isn't yet satisfied.  He walks back over to the Sportsmen,
 
kneeling beside their fallen friend, and crouches right
 
beside them.  Intimidated, Sportsman #2 looks away, but
 
LeMalle grabs his chin and turns his face back toward him.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Think I'm pretty?  You better
 
               forget how we look, 'cause next
 
               time they won't keep me from
 
               killing you.  This land ain't
 
               quite civilized, you know...
 
He unsheathes his buck knife.  BELOW FRAME, he slices across
 
the forehead of the dead Sportsman, peels back his scalp and
 
cuts it loose, Indian-style.  The Sportsmen are stunned and
 
sickened.
 
ANGLE ON TRAPPERS' JEEP
 
Corbett looks at Mitchell and wearily shakes his head.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               At least he scalped the dead one.
 
21   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON - DUSK
 
Devil's Cauldron Hot Springs is a cluster of twenty tiny
 
dwellings connected by an unpainted boardwalk.  The town
 
squats, ugly and temporary-looking, in a dirt clearing fifty
 
miles north of the Arctic Circle.  Thirty miles east of the
 
Pipeline, it's almost dead centre of interior Alaska.
 
At the edge of town is a gravel airstrip.  Mixed with the
 
prospector-era sod-roof cabins are a few prefabricated
 
houses.  The boon brought by men building the pipeline is
 
long gone.  Now only a few itinerant loggers, natives and
 
bush dwellers remain to fight boredom, each other and the
 
depression of the oncoming winter.
 
Enough steam escapes from the hot springs to perpetually
 
blanket the valley with fog.  The spa is log-walled and
 
horseshoe- shaped, with partitioned baths inside.  Facing it
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
21   CONTINUED:
 
are a mud-walled fire bath, a wooden steam bath called a
 
Maqi, six one-room cabins for let, and an unused dance hall.
 
LEO MEYERLING opens the tailgate of a Dodge truck with the
 
Northland Petroleum logo and "District Supervisor" on the
 
door.  Meyerling is short and bald with a completely
 
disreputable face.  He staples a poster on a wall.  It has a
 
picture of him on it, and:
 
                              
 
                        LEO MEYERLING
 
                             for
 
                      State Legislature
 
                VOTE FOR THE PEOPLE'S FRIEND!
 
22   EXT.  KENAI'S GENERAL STORE
 
Corbett and the other trappers drive past Meyerling and park
 
their jeep as the sun disappears behind the foothills.
 
23   INT.  KENAI'S GENERAL STORE
 
A handwritten public notice next to a schedule of church
 
meetings reads: "Live each day so you can look every damn
 
man in the eye and tell him to go to hell."  There is a post
 
office in the corner with some combination boxes and a
 
wicket less window.
 
The trappers come in.  Corbett sits in a chair and pulls his
 
boots off.  One of his wool socks is wet.  He nods to the
 
man sitting in the other chair, SAM WILDER.  Wilder is short
 
and tough, with a full head of crew cut grey hair and
 
weather- ravaged face that makes him look older than his
 
sixty years.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Hullo, Sam.  Slow day?
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (wary)
 
               Ben...boys.  Yeah, real slow, and
 
               I'd like to keep it that way.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (conciliatory)
 
               Just passing through.
 
A chubby Inupiat (interior Eskimo), wearing thick glasses,
 
several heavy sweaters and battery-heated socks, fusses
 
behind the counter.  He's EARL KENAI, owner of the hot
 
springs spa and the general store.
 
LeMalle chews on a handful of bear jerky.  Kenai stares at
 
LeMalle until he begrudgingly pays for the jerky.  Corbett
 
pulls on some sneakers and hands his boots to Kenai.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
23   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing; re boot)
 
               Needs patching.
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               Twenty-five dollar.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (smiles)
 
               Sure have learned to worship the
 
               white man's god.
 
Kenai nods agreeably and holds his hand out.  Corbett pays
 
him.  Meyerling comes in and posts some fliers on the
 
corkboard.
 
                         
 
                         MEYERLING
 
               I hope I can count on you
 
               gentlemen to vote for The
 
               People's Friend this November.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Share some of that oil company
 
               money in your pocket and you can.
 
Meyerling smiles like a toad, then slaps another poster on
 
the wall.  LeMalle throws his knife and it STICKS in the
 
poster between Meyerling's spread fingers.  Meyerling jumps
 
back and the trappers laugh.  Meyerling looks to Wilder for
 
support.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (to Meyerling)
 
               One flier comes loose and I shoot
 
               you for littering.
 
                         
 
                         MEYERLING
 
                   (exiting; grudgeless)
 
               Have your fun... just remember
 
               The People's Friend come election
 
               day.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (shakes his head)
 
               Oil Company candidate running on
 
               that slogan makes about as much
 
               sense as a rat fucking a
 
               grapefruit.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Hard to work up an interest in
 
               politics, way we live.  You're
 
               the first people we've seen in
 
               two weeks.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
23   CONTINUED:  (2)
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
                   (to Kenai)
 
               How about a quart of Jack
 
               Daniel's?
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               How about it is right.  Back in
 
               the primary this town was voted
 
               dry.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
                   (to Corbett)
 
               Aw, shit.  Let's go.  Leave a
 
               note for Viking Bob, tell him to
 
               meet us in Cache.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Relax.  One more day without
 
               drink won't kill you.  Right,
 
               Sam?
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I'm living proof of that sad
 
               fact.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Can we buy the Marshal some
 
               dinner?
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               No, I better stay at my post.
 
               Even without the hooch riling
 
               'em up, you know how
 
               mean-spirited folks get when they
 
               smell winter coming.
 
24   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON VALLEY - LONG SHOT - NIGHT
 
An early STORM has blown in from the north, bringing
 
whipping winds and freezing rain.
 
25   INT.  RENTAL CABIN
 
Corbett peers out the tiny window, frowning.  LeMalle cleans
 
his carbine while eating beans and bacon.  Mitchell hunches
 
over a table.  He's making a scrimshaw -- delicately
 
engraving, using homemade tools, on a palm-sized piece of
 
whale bone.  He rubs his eyes and looks up at Corbett.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               So much for the walking weather
 
               you predicted.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
25   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Had no choice...
 
                   (pointedly, at LeMalle)
 
               ...Given the situation.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               I know.  Least you didn't shoot
 
               all of them.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Fuck you, Mitchell.  Woulda been
 
               my ass if Ben didn't waste that
 
               prick.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (after a beat)
 
               Mitchell, look, it don't take
 
               three of us to wait for Viking
 
               Bob.
 
Mitchell glances at LeMalle, then at Corbett.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Go ahead.  Take the jeep.  I'll
 
               come to Cache with Bob when he
 
               gets here.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               Okay by me.  You're the one likes
 
               these hot springs so much.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Leave my traps.  We'll tag up,
 
               couple days.
 
26   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - "THE TURTLE" - DAY
 
The winds have died down.  The rain has turned to a light
 
snow.
 
A mobile arctic dwelling sits on a rise next to the Haul
 
Road.  It's a double-unit weather tight cocoon of fibreglass
 
and aluminium, pulled by a diesel rig on oversized tires.
 
The front module is 12 by 24, the rear 12 by 18.
 
An extended-cab pickup pulls up and Sam Wilder gets out.
 
The gravel-and-dirt Haul Road, paralleling the pipeline for
 
400 miles, is closed to the public.  An arriving vehicle,
 
therefore, is news.  The front door of the dwelling opens.
 
Eric and Anne Marie come outside, delighted to see Wilder.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
26   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I was making my rounds, saw your
 
               hangar wide open, plane getting
 
               rained on, so I closed it up.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Thanks.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (to Wilder)
 
               I bet you haven't had lunch.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (smiles)
 
               Bet you're right.  But I didn't
 
               come by to wangle a meal --
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               -- We appreciate the company.
 
               Anne Marie's getting cabin fever
 
               already.
 
Anne Marie shoots a look at Eric but doesn't disagree --
 
this is obviously an issue with them.  Wilder looks with
 
amusement at the mobile dwelling.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               What'd you say they call these
 
               spaceships?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Mobile Arctic Dwelling -- MAD.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               I call it 'the Turtle,' as in
 
               carrying your home on your back.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Best thing is, Meyerling has to
 
               chase around to find us.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (laughs)
 
               The little creep hates it that
 
               Eric actually does what the
 
               company hired him to do.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Watch it with Meyerling.  Man's
 
               as mean and corrupt as they get.
 
               Cut his mother's throat if it'd
 
               get him a couple votes.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
26   CONTINUED:  (2)
 
Looking past Wilder, Eric points out some smoke on the
 
horizon.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Hey, Sam, look over there.  Black
 
               and white smoke.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Damn.  Likely that's an SOS.
 
               Have to pass on that lunch.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               We'll go with you.
 
                                             
 
                                             CUT TO:
 
27   EXT.  SPORTSMEN'S CAMP - LATER THAT DAY
 
Everything seems peaceful enough.  The SOS fire (made from
 
burning green branches for white smoke and rubber for black
 
smoke) has burnt down to embers.
 
Eric, Anne Marie and Wilder pull up in Wilder's pickup.
 
The two Sportsmen sit in the front seat of the Land Rover,
 
but they don't react to the arrival of the rescuers.  In the
 
back seat, a reflective camping blanket covers a large mass.
 
Something is amiss.  Eric shoots a look of trepidation at
 
Anne Marie as they get out of the pickup.   Wilder pulls the
 
door of the Land Rover open.
 
A Sportsman slumps out onto the ground.  His eyes are open
 
and his tongue pokes out between his lips.  His skin is
 
blue-white. (He looks, in fact, much like Eric's nightmare.)
 
Startled, Eric steps back.  Anne Marie gasps with horror.
 
Wilder unzips the Sportsman's light windbreaker and listens
 
for a heartbeat.  Nothing.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Stupid goddamn greenhorns!  Froze
 
               to death.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               It's not even winter!
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               They got wet in the rain.  Core
 
               body temperature dropped, got
 
               drowsy, probably didn't even know
 
               what was happening.
 
Eric stares at the dead Sportsmen.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
27   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Question is why they sat here
 
               when the storm moved in.  Check
 
               their stuff while I sniff around.
 
Wilder tries the ignition.  The starter TURNS OVER, but the
 
engine makes a horrendous GRINDING.  He walks to the front
 
of the vehicle.  Noticing the bullet holes in the grille, he
 
bends down for a closer look.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Eric opens the rear hatchback and digs through the plentiful
 
supplies.  Still in their packages are some matchbox-sized
 
ELT locating beacons.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               They had Emergency Locater
 
               Transmitters, but didn't use
 
               them.
 
                   (opens one up; shakes his
 
                    head)
 
               Maybe because they didn't bring
 
               batteries.
 
CLOSE
 
Anne Marie opens the back door of the Land Rover.  She pulls
 
back the camping blanket... and uncovers the third
 
Sportsman.  The torn red flesh on his head and his
 
bugged-out eyes are a hideous sight.
 
Anne Marie SCREAMS and stumbles away.
 
28   EXT.  SPORTSMEN'S CAMP - LAND ROVER
 
Eric runs over to her as she tries to catch her breath.
 
Wilder looks at the third Sportsman and angrily kicks the
 
side of the Land Rover.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I'm too old for this shit.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Any idea who could've done it?
 
Sourly, Wilder points to a patch of frozen mud under the
 
vehicle.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               A certain sonofabitch bastard
 
                         -more-
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
28   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         WILDER (Cont'd)
 
               wearing a damaged mountain boot.
 
               Left a footprint clear as an
 
               autograph.
 
Wilder examines the Sportsman, finding the bullet hole in
 
his chest.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Even for Ben Corbett, this is
 
               nasty.  Man's got balls.  He was
 
               sitting in Devil's Cauldron when
 
               I left, calm as can be.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Thank God.  You can arrest him.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Not necessarily.  Corbett's awful
 
               hard bitten these days.
 
Wilder leans against the Land Rover, feeling tired.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (continuing)
 
               His old roaming area's all
 
               private reserve now.  Normally,
 
               long as he stays civil in my
 
               jurisdiction, I let him be.
 
                   (beat)
 
               Won't be able to take him by my
 
               lonesome, though.  Nobody in
 
               town'll lift a finger on this.
 
Eric looks hard at the dead Sportsmen.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (quietly)
 
               I'll go into town with you.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Eric, leave it alone.  It's not
 
               your business.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (shakes his head)
 
               No way can he get away with this.
 
               I'll be back by tonight.
 
29   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON - AFTERNOON
 
The town is quiet.
 
30   INT.  HOT SPRINGS SPA
 
Corbett soaks in one of the huge wooden tubs with a podgy
 
Inupiat hooker, DIXIE.
 
He looks up as Eric comes into the spa.  Eric holds
 
Corbett's boots, which have been repaired.  Eric pauses when
 
he sees Corbett.  There is a flash of recognition between
 
them.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Ben Corbett?
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Yep.  Afraid you have me at a
 
               disadvantage.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Kenai at the general store asked
 
               me to bring these.  Didn't expect
 
               we'd already met.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               No big deal.  We just got off on
 
               the wrong foot.  What's your
 
               name?
 
Eric glances down at Corbett's duffel bag, which sits on the
 
floor next to Corbett's tub.  Corbett's magnum rests on top
 
of it, well within reach.  Corbett notices Eric's interest
 
in it.  He leans back and smiles.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Desmond.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               New to the country, kid?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Six months.  Ecological study for
 
               Northland Oil.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Ecology.  Folks use that term for
 
               everything but what it means:
 
               who's eating who.
 
Putting his hand on Dixie's shoulder, Corbett stands and
 
gets out of the tub.  His sinewy body, resembling a
 
scarecrow made of steel cable, is covered with scars.  He
 
wraps a towel around his waist and crosses to Eric.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
30   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Now, why don't you get around to
 
               saying what you want.
 
Corbett grabs his boots from Eric and finds himself facing a
 
revolver, which Eric has been hiding inside one of the
 
boots.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing; smiling)
 
               You wouldn't shoot anyone...
 
                         
 
                         WILDER (OS)
 
               But I would.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Wilder has come in the back way and stands behind Corbett
 
with a 12-gauge shotgun.  He kicks Corbett's magnum out of
 
reach.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               All this for laying traps on
 
               private land?
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               You left a footprint at the
 
               Sportsmen's camp.  Only pretty
 
               sight there, Ben, 'cause the two
 
               men you didn't shoot and mutilate
 
               died of exposure.
 
Corbett shakes his head but remains implacable.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Christ if I shouldn't know better
 
               than to step in soft earth.  I've
 
               seen footprints in the tundra a
 
               hundred years old.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (to Eric)
 
               I got it from here.  Thanks.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (to Wilder)
 
               Sam, give Dixie here fifty bucks
 
               out of my kit, will you?
 
31   EXT.  HOT SPRINGS SPA
 
Eric comes outside.  Earl Kenai, overdressed for the weather
 
in gloves, mukluks and a full-length sealskin coat, stands
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
31   CONTINUED:
 
shivering by a woodshed near the hot springs, hack sawing a
 
piece of meat from a frozen moose carcass.
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               Before white men came, my people
 
               lived in sod houses underground
 
               and laid our dead on the tundra.
 
               Now we live above ground and bury
 
               our dead, and we haven't been
 
               warm since.
 
Wilder comes out of the spa with his shotgun and Corbett's
 
duffel bag cradled in his arm.  Handcuffed, Corbett walks in
 
front of him.
 
Kenai looks down to avoid eye contact with Corbett as he
 
goes by.  Corbett stops next to Eric and smiles.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Nice bluff the other day with the
 
               tranquilizer gun out your jeep
 
               window.  See you again, maybe.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (unintimidated)
 
               Yeah.  Maybe so.
 
32   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON - FOLLOW WILDER
 
as he leads Corbett along the boardwalk to the other end of
 
town.  They approach a prefab house perched on skids under a
 
tall antenna tower.  Mounted above the shack, a DC wind
 
charger turbine spins lazily in the faint breeze.  From
 
within the cabin comes an anomalous SOUND -- MTV.  Wilder
 
KNOCKS on the door.
 
ARTHUR NEFF, a pasty-white, 45-year-old ex-Texan, pulls the
 
door open.  His customary grin fades when he sees Corbett.
 
33   INT.  NEFF'S HOUSE
 
Wilder pushes Corbett inside past Neff.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I need to call Fairbanks.
 
Neff just stares at Corbett.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Neff!  Dial it up.  State police.
 
With a "what can I do but oblige?" look to Corbett, Neff
 
sits in front of the RCA Alascom radio telephone and dials.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
33   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         NEFF
 
                   (on phone)
 
               Fairbanks Alascom?  Patch me
 
               through to the State Police.
 
After a moment, he hands the receiver to Wilder.  Wilder
 
takes it, keeping one eye and the shotgun on Corbett.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (on phone)
 
               This is Sam Wilder, Marshal in
 
               Devil's Cauldron.  Had some
 
               killings here.  I got a suspect;
 
               be real nice if someone came and
 
               took him off my hands.
 
                         
 
                         STATE POLICEMAN (VO)
 
                   (thru phone)
 
               On a good day I couldn't spare a
 
               crosswalk guard.  But now, no
 
               way.  Folks're batshit with the
 
               weather turning sour.  Bring him
 
               in yourself.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (on phone)
 
               Next plane's not coming 'til next
 
               Monday.
 
                         
 
                         STATE POLICEMAN (VO)
 
                   (thru phone)
 
               Sit your suspect out in the cold.
 
               He'll keep.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (on phone)
 
               This man's friends ain't gonna
 
               look favourably on his
 
               incarceration.
 
                         
 
                         STATE POLICEMAN (VO)
 
                   (thru phone; Mr. Glib)
 
               So shoot him.  Won't have to feed
 
               him that way --
 
Angry, Wilder slams the receiver down.
 
34   INT.  WILDER'S CABIN
 
In one room, there is a wood-burning cook stove and an Ashley
 
heat stove, a table, a bunk and a small window.  Behind a
 
cloth partition is an eight by six holding cell.  The frame
 
of an iron-bar door is securely cemented to the log walls.
 
Wilder comes in with Corbett and locks him in the cell.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
34   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Mind if I get some stuff from my
 
               kit?
 
Wilder does mind.  He locks the duffel bag and Corbett's .44
 
in his desk drawer.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Sam, listen -- I shot to defend
 
               my man.  Other guy drew first.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               If that was all, fine.  But
 
               carving him up, stranding the
 
               others, that's too fucking much.
 
               Is everything that walks, crawls,
 
               flies or swims fair game to you?
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (softly)
 
               I'll get loose before that plane
 
               comes.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Don't try me.  I'll kill you if
 
               it comes to it.
 
35   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON - AFTERNOON
 
As Eric walks into Kenai's general store, Neff hurries over.
 
                         
 
                         NEFF
 
               Mr. Desmond!
 
                   (grins; sticks his hand
 
                    out)
 
               Arthur Neff.  Area rep for the
 
               Federal Assistance Plan.  Tell
 
               the boys in DC to keep those
 
               goodies coming.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Sure.
 
                         
 
                         NEFF
 
               Snowplough, generator, TV dish...
 
               hell, we get the goddamn Playboy
 
               Channel!  Here, this is for you.
 
He hands Eric a piece of styrofoam shaped like a commode
 
seat.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
35   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         NEFF
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Warm to forty below.  Remember,
 
               anything you want, you ask Arthur
 
               Neff.
 
36   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - THE TURTLE - NIGHT
 
The storm has passed.   A faint CHUGGING emanates from the
 
small orange generator trailer behind the Turtle.  Eric
 
pulls up and parks the Scout.
 
37   INT.  THE TURTLE
 
Nylon storage netting along the ceiling holds Eric's
 
research equipment and Anne Marie's photographic supplies.
 
In one corner of the Turtle are several of her black and
 
white prints.  All are of man-made objects whose presence is
 
juxtaposed with the natural surroundings.
 
Relieved he's home in one piece, Anne Marie meets Eric at
 
the door and kisses him.  Carrying a brown-paper-wrapped
 
package, Eric follows her into the kitchen, where she's
 
preparing dinner.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Did you catch Corbett?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Sure did.  He was one of the
 
               trappers we rousted from the Haul
 
               Road.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Was there any trouble?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               He was sitting in a hot tub with
 
               a hooker.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Going after killers isn't the
 
               same as chasing poachers, Eric.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (grins)
 
               Can't help myself.  Corbett's
 
               type always pisses me off.
 
                   (hands her the package)
 
               Oh, I found this at the post
 
               office.  Had your name on it.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
37   CONTINUED:
 
Perplexed, she looks at the return address --
 
Bloomingdale's.  Delighted, she tears it open.  Inside is a
 
pretty, elegant dress.  Anne Marie kisses him.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Oh, sweetheart.  It's beautiful!
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               You were looking at it in the
 
               catalogue.  Don't know where you
 
               can wear it...
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               I'll wear it for you.  And I can
 
               wear it when we go home.  We
 
               won't be here forever.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (frowning)
 
               You make it sound like a prison
 
               sentence.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               That's not what I meant.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               It's exactly what you meant.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Look, why get into this again.
 
               As long as it's working, let's
 
               leave it alone.  It's been nice
 
               so far.  We're together --
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               -- Permanently?
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (sighs)
 
               Do I want to be with you
 
               permanently?  Yes, I think I do.
 
               But be with what you do and the
 
               way you live?  That I don't know.
 
               C'mon, Eric, until I met you,
 
               coming back to Alaska was totally
 
               out of the question for me.  But
 
               I'm here.  I'm getting great
 
               pictures, and I'm having fun.
 
                   (slips her arms around him)
 
               I love you.
 
                   (kisses him)
 
               So shut up and let's eat.
 
38   EXT.  DEVIL'S CAULDRON - NIGHT
 
An old primer-grey station wagon rattles into town and
 
parks.  With an unlit cheroot stuck in his mouth, "VIKING"
 
BOB CORBETT gets out and stretches.  He's 38, six-foot-six,
 
with sandy hair, beard, ruddy skin, and his brother's dark
 
eyes.
 
He looks around for some sign of life.  He spots Neff
 
tending one of the windmills and walks over to him.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               I'm looking for some trappers.
 
               Ben Corbett, Mitchell, LeMalle.
 
               Seen 'em?
 
                         
 
                         NEFF
 
               Yesterday.  Said they were going
 
               to Cache.  They were thirsty, but
 
               we were voted dry.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               Shit.
 
As Viking Bob walks back to his station wagon, he notices
 
Kenai poking around in front of Wilder's cabin.
 
VIKING BOB'S POV
 
Illuminated by a bare bulb is Wilder's typical bush-country
 
front yard.  Piled are five cords of wood, boxes, tarps,
 
stove parts, saw horses, 55-gallon drums, dismantled snow
 
machines, wash tubs, tires, etc.
 
Bunching his collar around his neck, Kenai shivers and sorts
 
through Corbett's traps.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Viking Bob ambles over to Kenai.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               These yours?
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               Gonna make an offer.  Man who
 
               owns them won't need them where
 
               he's going.
 
39   INT.  WILDER'S CABIN
 
Wilder peers out the window and sees Viking Bob, then turns
 
to Corbett.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
39   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Back against the bars.  Now.
 
Wilder handcuffs Corbett's hands to the cell door bars, then
 
quickly wraps a piece of duct tape across Corbett's face,
 
covering his mouth.
 
Stuffing a .357 magnum in his belt, Wilder, coatless, slips
 
outside.
 
As soon as he's out the door, Corbett cranes his neck and
 
painfully tries to pry the tape off his face with the corner
 
of the door hinge.
 
40   EXT.  WILDER'S CABIN
 
The look on Wilder's face tells Kenai to shut up.  Viking
 
Bob realizes something's up.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Your brother and the boys left me
 
               some traps to sell for them.
 
               They're gone --
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               -- To Cache.  So I heard.  Ben
 
               never said nothing to me about
 
               selling his gear.
 
41   INT.  WILDER'S CABIN
 
Corbett gets the tape partially off his mouth.  He pries one
 
of his boots off and kicks it through a window.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Bob!  They got me on a murder
 
               charge!
 
42   EXT.  WILDER'S CABIN
 
Wilder pulls his .357 out.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Sorry, Bob.  I'll have to keep
 
               you here 'til I ship him south.
 
Viking Bob responds by flinging a heavy trap at Wilder, then
 
punching him in the gut.  Wilder sprawls among the junk,
 
dropping his revolver.  Kenai freezes, not about to take
 
sides.
 
Before Viking Bob can come at him again, Wilder grabs for
 
his .357. Viking Bob jumps back and bolts for his car.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
42   CONTINUED:
 
He dives into his station wagon and starts it up.  As he
 
drives past, Wilder POPS off a few rounds, but Viking Bob
 
keeps going.
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Kenai helps Wilder up.  Pissed, Wilder shoves him against
 
the cabin.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (continuing)
 
               You stupid, greedy, loudmouth
 
               sonofabitch!  He'll have the
 
               others here in a few hours.  You
 
               fucked me up, now you're gonna
 
               help me move him.
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
                   (shakes head)
 
               Forget it, Sam.  I never work for
 
               free.
 
43   INT.  THE TURTLE - NIGHT
 
Anne Marie sits on the floor, editing one of her VIDEOTAPES.
 
On the monitor, it SHOWS footage of the traps under the
 
pipeline piling.  Eric comes out of the back module holding
 
two ELT pendants.  He glances over at the monitor and nods
 
approvingly.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               I still can't believe I'm being
 
               financed by an oil company.
 
               Especially when they get a look
 
               at these pictures.  Technology in
 
               the wilderness; not too pretty.
 
                   (re ELTs)
 
               What's that?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               I thought I should check our
 
               emergency transmitters.
 
Eric activates the ELT's.  They emit an SOS pattern of radio
 
waves -- three short, three long and three short.  This is
 
visible as rhythmic INTERFERENCE on Anne Marie's video
 
MONITOR.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Avalanche season is coming.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
43   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Winter.  Two straight months of
 
               night -- we may never get out of
 
               bed.
 
                   (kisses him)
 
               Which would suit me fine.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Prolonged darkness makes people
 
               crazy.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
               Not me.  I'm equipped.
 
She turns on a small S-VHS video camera and snaps off the
 
room lights.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Allow me to give you a practical
 
               demonstration of low-light
 
               infrared photography...
 
She does so by seductively undressing for the camera.  She's
 
SEEN on the MONITOR, illuminated by the "light" from the hot
 
stove.  Eric appreciates the show.  He crawls toward her.
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (continuing)
 
               High-tech in the wilderness.
 
               Gets me excited, too.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               Come here...
 
Laughing, he wrestles her to the rug.
 
44   EXT.  HILLS ABOVE DEVIL'S CAULDRON - NIGHT
 
There is a full moon and a clear night sky.  Viking Bob's
 
station wagon is parked out of sight.  He sits inside,
 
waiting.
 
He hears an ENGINE starting in the distance.  Sitting up, he
 
grabs some binoculars.
 
HIS POV
 
Wilder's extended cab truck pulls out, heading west.
 
45   EXT.  FOOTHILLS - NIGHT
 
In the bright moonlight, two people are seen in Wilder's
 
truck as it speeds along a dirt road.
 
Viking Bob follows at a discreet distance, headlights off.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
45   CONTINUED:
 
NEW ANGLE
 
Viking Bob turns and takes the literal high road -- a narrow
 
trail above the roadway that Wilder's truck is on.
 
He zooms ahead and gets in front of his quarry, then drops
 
back down onto the road and waits in ambush.
 
As Wilder's truck approaches, Viking Bob turns on his bright
 
lights and crouches behind his car door with a shotgun.
 
Wilder's truck screeches to a stop.
 
CLOSER
 
Kenai gets out with his hands up.
 
Viking Bob slowly approaches Wilder's truck.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               Ben?
 
No answer.  Viking Bob looks in the cab.  Kenai's passenger
 
is Dixie, the Inupiat hooker.  Viking Bob grabs Kenai and
 
pushes the barrel of the shotgun hard against his cheek.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Where's Ben Corbett?
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               I have no argument with you, Bob.
 
               Wilder said I could keep his
 
               truck if I drove it ten miles
 
               away from town.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               Where did they go?
 
                         
 
                         KENAI
 
               He didn't say, but I would guess
 
               the opposite way from here.
 
Viking Bob shoves Kenai against the truck, then punches him
 
for good measure.  Cussing, he runs back to his station
 
wagon and drives off.
 
                                             
 
                                             CUT TO:
 
46   INT.  THE TURTLE - REAR MODULE - NIGHT
 
Eric and Anne Marie are asleep.  Eric starts awake at the OS
 
sound of a high-pitched vehicle HORN and an approaching
 
ENGINE.
 
47   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - THE TURTLE
 
Eric pulls the door open.  Wilder is untying Corbett from
 
the snowmobile.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I got an emergency on my hands.
 
Corbett smiles at Eric as he walks inside.
 
48   INT.  THE TURTLE
 
Eric, Wilder and Corbett sit in the front module.  Anne
 
Marie, nervous, wearing a down robe, serves coffee.  She
 
stares at Corbett, trying to reconcile his quiet demeanour
 
with what she saw that afternoon.  Corbett smiles at Eric.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (to Eric)
 
               ...You give us a ride in the
 
               Cessna you got hangared at the
 
               pumping station, we'll be in
 
               Fairbanks in a few hours.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               That's what we should've done in
 
               the first place.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I could've sat tight for the
 
               transport, 'til Bob came poking
 
               around.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (to Wilder; re Anne Marie)
 
               A lot to ask, dragging him away
 
               from such a good-looking girl --
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (irritated)
 
               -- To take you to jail?  It'll be
 
               my pleasure.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (to Eric)
 
               You better get some sleep.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Good idea.  Flying over mountains
 
               can give you some nasty
 
               surprises.  Go too low, one of
 
               the clouds might have a big rock
 
               inside it.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
48   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (hard)
 
               I'll get you there all right.
 
Eric takes Anne Marie to the rear module, leaving Wilder
 
with his prisoner.
 
                                             
 
                                             CUT TO:
 
49   INT.  THE TURTLE - LATER THAT NIGHT
 
A bottle of Eric's Scotch sits almost empty on the table
 
beside Wilder.  Wilder dozes in a chair facing Corbett.
 
Corbett is awake.  He contorts his body to bring his
 
handcuff chain under his feet and get his hands in front of
 
him.  He eyes Wilder's .357.  It's in a lefty Sam Browne
 
holster.  No way to take it without waking Wilder.
 
Corbett stands and inches toward the door.  As he pulls it
 
open, the insulation makes enough NOISE to stir Wilder.
 
Wilder gets up and pushes Corbett back into his chair.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               Goddammit, I don't need this
 
               aggravation.  I'll shoot you,
 
               Ben.  Bank on it.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               I don't want to hurt you, Sam.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
               I'm not too old to knock the snot
 
               out of you!
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Nothing personal.
 
Wilder's mind clears enough to realize that Corbett's hands
 
are in front of him.  He reaches for his .357.  Corbett
 
butts into Wilder's midsection with his head.  Amazingly,
 
Wilder stays on his feet.
 
Corbett hurries back to the door.  Wilder lunges,
 
bull-determined to hold onto him.  Corbett smashes Wilder
 
across the face with his clenched hands.  Wilder goes down
 
hard, hitting his head on the table, and stays there.
 
Corbett instinctively kneels to see if Wilder is still
 
breathing.  But then, hearing MOVEMENT in the rear module,
 
Corbett flees.
 
50   INT.  THE TURTLE - REAR MODULE
 
Eric is pulling on his pants.
 
51   INT.  THE TURTLE - FRONT MODULE
 
Eric rushes in.  The outside door is open and Wilder lies on
 
the floor.   His holster is empty.  Anne Marie comes in and
 
crosses to Wilder.
 
Eric pulls a floor trap door open and digs through the
 
company-issue equipment, coming up with a huge Remington
 
bolt-action bear rifle.  Unfamiliar with weapons, Eric tears
 
open a box of shells and fumbles to load the rifle.
 
52   EXT.  THE TURTLE
 
Corbett is trying to start Eric's Scout.
 
Eric fires a loud warning SHOT from the Turtle doorway.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               You want to try that handgun
 
               against this rifle, go ahead.
 
Corbett sits in the Scout for a long moment, weighing his
 
odds.  He takes his hands off the steering wheel...
 
Eric SHOOTS again, this time SMASHING the side-view mirror
 
and window next to Corbett's head.
 
Still handcuffed, Corbett gets out of the Scout.  Holding
 
the .357 gingerly by the butt, he puts it on the hood of the
 
Scout.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Some day you might have to face
 
               me without a gun.
 
53   INT.  THE TURTLE
 
Eric leads Corbett in.  Anne Marie is cradling Wilder's
 
head. She's crying.  Eric looks at Wilder.  There is blood
 
coming from his ear and he's fading fast.
 
                         
 
                         WILDER
 
                   (thickly)
 
               Fetch him back?
 
                   (Eric nods)
 
               Don't let him walk...
 
Eric nods again.  Wilder holds his gaze on Eric, then simply
 
stops breathing.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
53   CONTINUED:
 
Eric is stunned.  Quietly, Corbett sits down.  Clutching the
 
rifle, Eric sits on the floor and glares at Corbett.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
                   (softly)
 
               Does he have people?
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (after a beat)
 
               A daughter in Oregon.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Send him down to her.  There's
 
               money in my duffel bag, back at
 
               his cabin.
 
Corbett's benign attitude is chilling.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               I better call in.
 
He turns the shortwave radio on.  It SPARKS and burns out.
 
The remainder of the liquor has been poured inside it.
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
                   (continuing)
 
               Thought of everything, huh?
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               Surviving is what I know --
 
                         
 
                         ERIC
 
               -- Killing is what you know.
 
                   (to Anne Marie)
 
               Pack some food while I prep for
 
               the flight.
 
                   (off her look)
 
               I'm sure not gonna let him go.
 
Covering Corbett with the rifle, Eric handcuffs him to the
 
sturdy metal bracket of a wall unit.
 
54   EXT.  CACHE, ALASKA - (MOVING SHOT) - NIGHT
 
Viking Bob approaches in his station wagon on a narrow dirt
 
road.  The huge night sky all but smothers the weak light
 
from the town up ahead.
 
Cache seems a mistake -- a jumble of unpainted buildings in
 
the middle of a big nothing, twenty miles north of the
 
Arctic Circle.  Still, it's more animated than Devil's
 
Cauldron.  There are a hundred permanent residents, several
 
taverns and a three-store, fly-in shopping center.
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
54   CONTINUED:
 
Even though it's the middle of the night, people roam the
 
streets, drinking and socializing.  With only a couple feet
 
of snow on the ground, this is still summertime.  Under
 
storefront awnings, drunken INDIANS sleep on the concrete.
 
Viking Bob cruises the main drag, looking for the other
 
trappers.  He spots their jeep in front of a
 
dangerous-looking saloon called the "Bear Sign Inn."
 
ANGLE WITH VIKING BOB
 
as he parks and gets out of his station wagon.  He hears a
 
familiar VOICE around the side of the building.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE (OS)
 
               C'mon, girl, talk to me,
 
               negotiate with me...
 
55   EXT.  CACHE - ALLEY
 
Drunk, LeMalle stands in an alley with a bored, acne-scarred
 
Oriental PROSTITUTE.  He weaves and leers, his hand stuck
 
inside her blouse.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               LeMalle.  We got a problem.
 
               Where's Mitchell?
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               Goddamn!  Viking Bob!  Mitchell's
 
               inside, boring bastard...
 
Grumbling, Viking Bob separates LeMalle from the Prostitute
 
and drags him by the collar out of the alley.
 
                                             
 
                                             CUT TO:
 
56   INT.  BEAR SIGN INN - NIGHT
 
Meyerling's campaign posters cover the walls.  Many have
 
been pulled down and muddied underfoot by the drunken crowd.
 
In a booth covered with grafitti, Mitchell squints and works
 
on his scrimshaw.  LeMalle, somewhat sober, eats a plate of
 
muktuk -- whale blubber.  Viking Bob pours him more coffee.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
                   (to Viking Bob)
 
               ...Ben never sent a signal.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               Musta never got a chance to
 
                         -more-
 
                                        
 
                                        (CONTINUED)
 
56   CONTINUED:
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB (Cont'd)
 
               activate.  Wilder's aiming to
 
               take him to Fairbanks, we can
 
               count on that much.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               Meaning he'll need a plane.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               Closest planes for hire are here
 
               in Cache.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               Hang on...
 
                   (to LeMalle)
 
               Remember that Cessna we saw at
 
               the pumping station on the Haul
 
               Road?  Belongs to the guy they
 
               got patrolling the pipeline.
 
                         
 
                         LEMALLE
 
               There you go.  Wilder's always
 
               chummy with the fuckin'
 
               Bambi-lovers.
 
                         
 
                         VIKING BOB
 
               It's a long shot.
 
                         
 
                         MITCHELL
 
               You got a better idea?
 
57   EXT.  HAUL ROAD - THE TURTLE - DAWN
 
Wisps of light cut across the cold blue sky.
 
Eric comes out of the Turtle, leaving the front door ajar.
 
He throws a knapsack of supplies into the back of the Scout.
 
58   INT.  THE TURTLE
 
Corbett's right hand is still handcuffed to the wall unit.
 
Terrified about being alone with Corbett, Anne Marie
 
cautiously puts a cup of coffee in front of him.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
               How long have you been up north?
 
                         
 
                         ANNE MARIE
 
                   (after a beat)
 
               Six months.
 
                         
 
                         CORBETT
 
     &nbs