The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway - Screenplay draft (part two)
Camera moves slowly down from above Rael, wrapped completely in his cocoon, as he lies on the ground. (An edited version of “Cuckoo Cucoon” plays [without the words], just the backing instruments with the flute solo as the centerpiece). The camera zooms inside the wool and we see Rael’s face. He is comfortable, at peace. Camera moves out and once again the white wool fills the screen.
Camera moves slowly down to where Rael’s heart would be (as the strains of “In The Cage” begin). The shot moves in to his beating heart, and then down from his chest to his stomach, which is illuminated from within with a strong yellow glow (“I got sunshine in my stomach”). The entire screen fades to yellow. Then there’s a partial fade-in, over the yellow, of Rael’s face as he falls in to slumber (“but I can’t keep me from creeping sleep”). Back to yellow as the organ arpeggio gets louder. The yellow glow becomes a yellow line as the camera begins tracking the line along a gigantic web of lines which form a grid in space. Stars dot the far distance, and each intersection of lines is brighter. As the camera tracks past the intersections, objects sweep past from above. Quick edits flash of Rael’s cocoon melting away as a droplets fall from the cave ceiling on to the wool.. (“Rockface moves to press my skin…”) Rael is finally freed of the wool only to find that rock formations have developed all around him. He’s wearing his same street clothing only the entire outfit is white.
The scene starts oscillating from Cave to Cage in time with the music, slowly at first. He walks toward the bars, but then confused, Rael shrinks back to the ground in the fetal position and holds his stomach. (“If I keep self-control”) Cut back to the yellow lines. It becomes clear that the objects at the intersections are cages/caves, all oscillating. Streaming past the camera as it tracks down the lines are the flat images seen before (in “Fly on a Windshield”).
(“Stalactites, Stalagmites…”) Rael is standing again and, the scene oscillating very fast now, he can no longer shake the bars which are trapping him. He can’t stand up for long as another wave of sickness passes through him. The oscillating begins slowing and Rael sees a bright light shining from outside the cage. He is able to stand and notices the other cages. He looks to the bright light nearest to him and as the scene stops oscillating he sees a figure reaching out of the cage just like he is doing. Suddenly huge screens appear around Rael’s cage and block out his view of the outside. Rael reels and falls to the ground as images of his life flash on the screens, as though his eyes have been cameras and have recorded everything he’s seen. Scenes of violence and vandalism flash around him. The scenes flow backwards in time, regressing in relation to Rael’s age. He reviews his trouble making all the way back to his troubled childhood.
He stands transfixed, rooted to the ground, not able to look away. Then as quickly as it started the screens disappear and Rael again sees the outside space and network of cages. He looks again to the figure in the next cage and suddenly thinks he recognizes him, although his back is turned to Rael. The figure’s head slowly turns toward Rael. The camera shot is too far to make out features, but it is implied that Rael sees and knows the face, his brother John (as sung in the song lyric). Rael is panic stricken and clutches the bars. He shouts “Help!”, but John merely looks at him, without expression. Rael cries out “John please help me!” but still with no reply or sign of recognition from John. Rael becomes visibly shaken with frustration. John turns and walks away. Rael looks around to see that his own cage has become a cave again and is still solid on all sides. Resigned, he steps toward the opposite side, just in time for the oscillating of the cave/cage scene to start again. Inside cave, the water from the ceiling is almost pouring. The oscillating quickens and Rael falls to his knees and then to the floor, feeling sick again from the ultra-motion of the oscillation. He clutches his head in agony, balling up again in a fetal position. With eyes closed, Rael doesn’t see that the cage/cave starts to dissolve along with the whole network.
He straightens his body out, opens his eyes (tight close up slowly pulling out), and then his body slowly begins revolving. The revolutions speed up until his body is just a blur. (The main music fades and the outro music cross-fades) The spinning scene fades and we see Rael lying in the cave amidst the torn white wool all around him. His clothes are no longer white. In broken slow motion edits, we see Rael wake up, then dizzily and groggily stand up and stagger out of the cave. Fade to black.