THE FUNERAL

by Dale Parker Anderson

Short Film
Email: [email protected]

This heart warming story is of how the recent anti same sex marriage legislation introduced by the Australian government has affected the lives of gay and lesbian people. This charming Australian comedy will affect and appeal to both gay and straight audiences.

The Funeral.

1. EXT. CATHOLIC CHURCH. BRISBANE. MORNING

Opening credits roll and the opening music is Suite No 1 in G major by Johann Sebastian Bach. Shot of a taxi screeching passed a stone cathedral in Elizabeth Street Brisbane and pulling way up down the street and of two young people Dale and Chris both dressed in mourning getting out of the taxi, they appear to be running very late for a funeral and are in a hurry.

Shot of a large black hearse parked out of the front of the cathedral and of a priest standing on the steps of the cathedral under the large wooden doors looking anxiously at his watch.

Shot of Dale and Chris walking hurriedly up the street

Dale is dressed in a smart black suit he is 25 years of age and is tall and blond and very fair he is handsome with an angelic look about him.

Chris is also 25 but is short and dumpy and looks like she is a Goth caught up in a blender, she is dressed all in black, she has some come fuck me stilettos on, fishnets and is wearing a huge hat with a black lace veil its very camp. She is fiddling with a small clear plastic bag with 5 tablets in it.

The opening music abruptly stops.

Dale: What you got there?

Chris: Trips, I got 5 you want one.

Dale: Shit Chris this is my boyfriend’s bloody funeral, not a dance party, FUCK ME!

Chris: I would but I am not gay and I don’t have a dick.

She ravages through her black handbag and takes a small bottle of spring water out of it and then takes the 5 tablets and puts them on her tongue and swallows them with a mouthful of spring water from her bottle.

Dale: Move it Chris! We are running really late and you know how fucking anal Marks homophobic family is.

Chris: Yeah! That’s why I bought the drugs I wont be coping with that fire and brimstone mob starring at us all through the service. Why did you let them bury him in a church anyway he hated the church.

Dale: Under the new law gay relationships aren’t recognised so his family have all the legal say in funerals. I had no say at all.

Chris: Fuck, that doesn’t seem fair

Dale: No, we can thank fucking John Howard and Kim Beasley for that piece of discrimination.

Chris: Hey did I tell you that today I started my diet so from now on you have to call me Bronte.

Dale: Bronte? Why Bronte?

Chris: Because Bronte is that chick that had anorexia and keeps getting interviewed by Ray Martin on A Current Affair and 60 minutes on channel 9. I think she is cool, I want anorexia like Bronte.

Dale: Well if you keep taking drugs like you do you will end up like her.

Chris: Drugs aren’t addictive and I should know cause I have been using them for years

As Dale and Chris near the church Chris spots a poster on the fence of the church advertising a Christian festival of light drug free alcohol free dance party.

Shot of Chris pointing to the poster

Chris: We should go to that!

Dale: What, that festival of light dance party, you got to be joking the Christians would burn us in hell!

Chris: Its says its drugs free and alcohol free, normally that shit costs me a bloody fortune, how come they can give it away for free.

Dale: Stupid fucking Christians they all give me the shits.

Dale and Chris make there way up the stone path and up the stairs of the cathedral. The Priest who is due to conduct the service is standing on the steps near the large arched wooden doors of the church. He sees Dale and Chris coming towards him. Funeral music can be heard coming out of the cathedral.

Dale: Sir is the service all ready under way, I’m Dale its my boyfriend Mark’s funeral

Priest: Yes, but I am sorry Marks family have asked that I give you this letter it is from Mark they have also asked that you not attend the service and you understand the Catholic Church’s view on homosexuality.

Dale holds Marks letter and fidgets with it

Dale: Sir, Mark told me that should anything ever happen to him he did not want a Christian funeral because you people are homophobic and discriminate against us gays.

It’s this fucking church, you fucking Christians and his religious fucking family sitting in there that killed him.

Dale’s hatred of religion and the way it makes life abysmal for gay people comes flooding back to him. He becomes overwhelmed by the hypocrisy of the situation. This is for you Mark he thinks to himself.

Priest: What a ridiculous thing to stay. You aren’t implying that he wasn’t a Christian?

Dale: Yes I am

Dale is miserable

Chris: I am so tripping these drugs are unreal

Dale: He committed suicide because he was a homosexual and your church and religion hates gay people.

The Priest is bristling with anger, and clearly did not understand Mark

Priest: My dear young friend, Mark was from a fine Catholic Christian family. He was a bright, young man, who led an impeccable life, how dare you say such a thing? He….

Dale interrupts him

Dale: I know he was a young man who lived a pure life, but a Christian he wasn’t. Its not right to be angry with me at a time like this, or for me refusing to say something he wasn’t. You should be angry with yourself and your fucking stupid religion and those hypocrites of his family in there – they killed him. I am only saying what I know, I did not make it up to be malicious. I know that not only was Mark not a Christian, he hated the whole business of religion. You are all hypocrites

Priest: Young man that is an outrageous thing to say! And in such circumstances.

The 5 trips Chris had taken have clearly started to kick in and she is looking all glassy eyed.

Chris: Fuck these are unreal trips they are kicking in so quick

Dale: Mark was my boyfriend, he saved my life. It could very well have been me lying in that coffin, if I had not met him. The only difference between us, is that I have a family who loves me and supports me unconditionally. He didn’t. I have to say what my boyfriend wanted, or I’ll never forgive myself. If I pretended that things are not as they are, I will be as untruthful, fake and two faced as you and your church and the people in there. If I don’t take this stance, my conscience will forever stab me whenever I think of Mark.

The Priest strokes his chin and glares coldly at Dale and Chris

Chris looks clearly drug fucked

Chris (to the priest): You, you are evil, you are of the devil. I believe in karma. Gay people are creatures of bright light and you, you are an avatar of darkness. I don’t know what you are doing here on earth, but you are a creature of the devil and you kiss his arse. The first time I seen you today, I thought Bronte, that is the man of the devil. You and the church are like a creatures of the ocean depth that shoots poison when they see light. Praise the lord praise the lord A fucking Men.

Her outburst does not make any sense to either Dale or the Priest and they both stair at her blankly.


Dale: Tell your stupid fucking Pope that I know all that he wants and his church want is money, you Catholics own the best and most expensive private schools in Australia, you own the best prime real estate in Australia but you and your pope still have to wake up in your own skin, and that sounds bad to me. You may be able to preach this homophobic evil catholic Christian bullshit and the pope may still live in his marble palace in the Vatican but money doesn’t buy you everything, you both can’t go out to a shop and stock up on brains, dignity and grace. You, your pope and the Catholic Church are ugly and common to the bone and you kill people through your teachings either by AIDS or suicide.

With that, the outraged priest walks through the church doors and slams them shut in Dale and Chris’s face. The two of them slunk down the steps out side the church and they can hear the service and music Suite No 1 in G major by Johann Sebastian Bach being played from inside the cathedral.

Dale takes out Marks letter and reads it, it is a poem Mark has wrote.

(Voice over of Mark reading the poem)

Shot of Dale crying as it is being read

To my Boyfriend Dale
Why has life been so cruel to me
With heartaches that never let me be
It has been one problem after another
It doesn’t seem worth all the bother
First of all I came out and my mother cried
Then my father belted me making me bleed inside
Its true I could have tried harder
Yet I didn’t claim to be a martyr
What’s happening to my fair share
Does anyone really care
I no longer want to live
What more do I possible have to give
Why doesn’t my family love me
Will I die before I can get free
So many questions come to mind
Answers that I cannot seem to find
When I am gone will I be mourned
Or shall my death pass by ignored
Now as lifes clock counts down my love
I ask, does the punishment fit the crime
As I don’t know where or why
I guess I will just say goodbye
But before I die I wish to say’
That my love for you will never fade away
Even though I may soon be gone
My love for you is eternal and will live on

 

2. EXT. CHURCH/CEMETRY. BRISBANE. MORNING

Suite No 1 in G major by Johann Sebastian Bach plays over the shot of Marks coffin in the back of the hearse in front of the Cathedral. 

Shot of the hearse leaving the driveway of the cathedral and driving past Chris and Dale on the footpath with Dale sadly waving to it and crying

Shot of the cemetery and of the homophobic priest standing near the coffin holding a microphone the priest places the microphone down on a small out-side sound system near him and he bows his head as if in prayer.

Shot of the hole in the earth that has been opened by two council men and they begin to lower the coffin down on ropes.

Dale has selected an armload of lush flowers, pink lilacs, pink roses. Pink orchids and a wreath made of pink frangipanis for the grave. He chose pink flowers to make a gay statement and has spent unstintingly on the flowers, he holds them lightly in his arms as the coffin is lowed in the hole. Dale and Chris are standing alone. He is displaying composure that Mark would have wanted.

The Johann Sebastian Bach song Stops

Dale (to Chris): My nerves are under control, as long as no one turns on me or talks to me.

Chris (clearly drugged fucked): I am so tripping.

The Priest apparently does not regard his conversation with Dale as closed, and walks over to Dale’s side and puts his bony hand on Dale’s shoulder. He has tears in his eyes.

Priest: My Boy, will you ask for Gods forgiveness and take back what you said

Dale: Not this again

Priest: Before it’s to late

Dale: It was too late for him, his father belted him for being gay, too late is long past! I will not take back what I said. Does it not occur to you that I’d be doing it for you, not him. He suffered. And he faced death with a clear head, and alone, with none of these stupid religious consolations. Maybe there is a god but I know one thing, he isn’t a Christian nor is he Jewish, or Buddhist or Islamic or Muslim or Hindu. Religion is like Santa Clause and the Easter Bunny it’s a man made thing, it’s something you people make up so just leave me alone!

The Priest can see the anger rise in Dales face, his blistering glare and the blood rushing to his cheeks has made his face turn pale and a bright red. It is an ugly moment.

Dale trembles as he watches shovelfuls of damp earth fall on the coffin.

Dale (to Chris): Marks parents look as if they are really pleased that their homosexual son who could have been an embarrassment to them is now forever being buried and out of the way-covered up and forever forgotten. Their feigned sadness infuriates me.

Chris is clearly out of it and not listing to a word Dale is saying. The two gravediggers turn to go as soon as they finish filling up the hole. Dale walks up to Marks grave to place his pink wreath, put notices what a sloppy job they have done. He cries out not noticing the strident anger of his tone.

Dale (to the gravediggers): What are you thinking of, don’t leave this place a mess, smooth it out and don’t leave the mud showing!

The labourers shrug, then move back to the grave, the workers rearrange the ground cover to Dale’s satisfaction. They watch Dale fetch a double hand full of fresh grass to cover the mud smear they’d left, he kneels down carefully arranging the tuffs of grass. Then arranges his armload of pink bridal looking flowers, he fusses over them, trying to arrange them perfectly.

Dale: Please Mark, help me they look awful

The oldest grave digger silently crouches and makes a couple of changes, Dale appreciates the gesture and looks at him with silent gratitude

Dale: That’s right. Thank you!  

The old grave digger gets to his feet and offers Dale his hand, Dale lets himself be pulled up to his feet. He is in to much pain to notice the scathing stare he is getting from the priest. A defining loud noise booms out of the speakers and Dale looks up, Chris is at the sound system and is clutching on to the Priest microphone and clutching onto a silver cross which she proudly holds up like an award at weight watches, she is still tripping, she thinks she’s Bronte and has anorexia.

Chris: Thank You, Thank you to all my fans you are all marvellous. I know many of you want to be as thin and beautiful as me!!!! I hope your all following the thin commandments and that your boobs are shrinking by the second, you will feel miserable and want to eat, but then make sure you remember me!! I am your INSPIRATION. Anorexia IS a lifestyle NOT a diesase!  I love you Ray.
This weight watches award means so much to me. I have never one anything in my life. I’d like to thank all the crew who worked with me on the A Current Affair’s anorexia story and on my story Brontie on 60 Minutes. But most of all I want to thank one special person.

Dale: What the…

Chris: This weight watchers award is much Ray Martins as it is mine, he gives me so much…inspiration. Lets hear it for him….Ray

Dale: Chris

Chris is wondering around the cemetery tripping on acid with the priest microphone in her hand still caring the silver cross.

Chris: People say, Bronti where do you get your energy from?

Dale: Chris, this is a funeral, not a Weight watchers award night.

Chris: and I say, Hey…I don’t know cause everything I eat I throw up. But Hey….

Priest: Has she taken something

Chris: Ray

Priest: Is her mother here

Chris: Ray Martin, get on down, man, your vibes are shooting through me now

Priest: Could the mother of this young lady help her please

Dale: Don’t shout at her

Chris (to the priest): You’re giving me bad vibes, Mama

Priest: She’s on something, could someone turn her microphone off

Dale (to Chris): Chris!!
No response

Dale: Chris!

No response  

Dale: Bronte, Bronte!

She looks around and starts walking towards him, but falls down an open grave, close up shot of her throwing her handbag and the silver cross out of the top of the grave and her trying to get out of the grave.


BASED ON A TRUE STOREY.

THE END.

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