~ PART 1 ~ PART 2 ~ PART 3 ~ PART 4 ~

INT. KITCHEN - MORNING

Tyler is warming something and Jack sits on the table.

JACK (V.O.)
There were no neighbors. Just some warehouses and a paper mill, that fart smell steam, the hamster cage of wood chips.

EXT. LOU'S TAVERN PARKING LOT - NIGHT

Tyler and Jack FIGHT. TWO GUYS come out of the tavern. They see them fighting.

MAN
What we have here?

They move toward them. Tyler sees them and stops punching Jack.

TYLER
Hey, guys.

MAN
Hey.

Tyler PUNCHES Jack right in the eye.

INT. OFFICE - TOILET

Jack and his BOSS are side by side pissing. Jack whistles. Boss turns to Jack and sees his BLACK eye.

INT. BASEMENT - DAY

Jack sits on the basement stairs, watching as Tyler, knee-deep in water, works at an open FUSE BOX, flipping breakers in a certain order, showing Jack how it's done.

JACK (V.O.)
Every time it rained we had to kill the power. By the end of the first month I didn't miss TV. I didn't even mind the warm, stale refrigerator.

EXT. LOU'S TAVERN PARKING LOT - NIGHT

TEN GUYS YELL, standing around Tyler and a man, who FIGHT. Tyler PUNCHES the man and he falls down. ANOTHER MAN in a suit, comes one step closer to Tyler and raises his hand.

MAN
Can I be next?

Jack and Tyler, both look at each other.

TYLER
All right, man. Lose the tie.

EXT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - NIGHT

Jack and Tyler SWING an old GOLF CLUB -- THWACK -- they send golf ball soaring down the desolate street.

JACK (V.O.)
At night, Tyler and I were alone for half a mile in every direction.

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - NIGHT

It's raining.

JACK (V.O.)
Rain trickled down through the plaster and the light fixtures .Every wooden swelled and shrunk. Everywhere were rusted nails to snug your elbow on  .The previous occupant had been a bit of a shut-in.

INT. READING ROOM - NIGHT

CANDLES BURN. Jack is reading MAGAZINES. Rain DRIPS from the ceiling. No furniture. THOUSANDS OF MAGAZINES. Tyler passes by Jack, on a bicycle.

TYLER
Hey, man, what are you reading?

JACK
Listen to this. It's an article written in first person. "I am Jack's medulla oblongata, without me Jack could not regulate his heart rate, blood pressure or breathing!" There's a whole series of these! "I am Jill's nipples". "I am Jack's Colon."

Tyler is still on the bicycle.

TYLER
Yeah, I get cancer, I kill Jack.

Tyler hits something and falls down.

INT. JACK'S OFFICE - DAY

Jack daubs blood from his mouth with a handkerchief. Boss enters and complains.

JACK (V.O.)
After fighting, everything else in your life gets the volume turned down. 

JACK
What?

JACK (V.O.)
You can deal with anything.

BOSS
Have you finished those reports?

Jack hands him the reports.

JACK (V.O.)
The people who had power over you, have less and less.

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - BATHROOM - MORNING

Tyler is in the tub and Jack is taking care an injury.

TYLER
If you could fight anyone, who would you fight?

JACK
I'd fight my boss, probably.

TYLER
Really?

JACK
Yeah, why, who would you fight?

TYLER
I'd fight my dad.

JACK
I don't know my dad. I mean, I know him, but he left when I was like six year old. Married this woman, had more kids. He did this like every six years. Goes to a new city and starts a new family.

TYLER
He was setting franchises. My dad never went to college, so it was really important that I'd go.

JACK
Sounds familiar.

TYLER
So I graduate, I called him a long distance  and asked: "Dad, now what?", he says "Get a job".

JACK
Same here.

TYLER
 When I turned twenty five, my yearly call again "Dad, now what?", he says "I don't know, get married!"

JACK
I can't get married, I'm a thirty-year-old boy!

TYLER
We're a generation of men raised by women. I'm wondering if another woman is really the answer we need.

INT. KITCHEN - DAY

Jack, in work clothes, picks up a saucepan with coffee and sips. Tyler, in waiter's uniform, comes to have Jack straighten his tie.

JACK (V.O.)
Most of the week, we were Ozzie and Harriet.

Jack picks up his briefcase and walks out the door.

JACK (V.O.)
But every Saturday night, we were finding something out...

EXT. LOU'S TAVERN PARKING LOT - NIGHT

Jack and Tyler stand amidst FIFTEEN GUYS around TWO GUYS FIGHTING. The crowd yells MORE WILDLY than before. In the background are EIGHT PARKED CARS.

JACK (V.O.)
... we were finding out, more and more, that we were not alone.

LIGHTS GO OUT all over the parking.

MAN
Who turned the light off?

EXT. STREET - NIGHT

Jack walks along.

JACK (V.O.)
It used to be that when I came home angry and depressed. I'd just clean my condo. Polish my Scandinavian furniture. I should've been looking for a new condo.

Jack stops, looking at a CHURCH with SUPPORT GROUP-PEOPLE milling around the entrance, drinking coffee and sodas. MARLA is there, amongst them, smoking. Jack's face shows no reaction. He continues to walk.

JACK (V.O.)
I should've been haggling  with my insurance company. I should've been upset about my nice neat flaming little shit. But I wasn't.

INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY

A SLIDE SHOW progresses, run by a chipper salesman, WALTER. Jack sits, deadpan, with a PUFFY LIP and a BRUISED cheek. Boss and other associates are there too.

WALTER
The basic premise of cyber netting any office is make things more efficient.

JACK (V.O.)
Monday mornings, all I could do was think about next week.

BOSS
Can I get the icon is corn-flower blue?

WALTER
Absolutely. Efficiency is priority number one, people. Because waste is a thief. 
(indicating Jack)
I showed this already to my man here. You liked it, didn't you?

Jack smiles. His teeth are RED with BLOOD. They GLOW eerily in the dim light. Everybody stares at him.

JACK (V.O.)
You can swallow a pint of blood before you get sick.

EXT. LOU'S TAVERN - NIGHT

Out of silent darkness, HEADLIGHTS appear from all directions. CARS PULL UP and park int eh already-packed lot. YOUNG MEN get out and march into the tavern...

JACK (V.O.)
It was right in everyone's face. Tyler and  I made it visible. It was on the tip of everyone's tongue. Tyler and I just gave it a name.

INT. LOU'S TAVERN - SAME

The men, including Jack and Tyler, enter and stand against the back wall, waiting. LOUD ROCK MUSIC is playing in the background. The bartender, IRVINE, calls out:

IRVINE
Come on people, you gotta go home!

IRVINE flicks on the LIGHTS. Drunken customers squint and get the message. They plop down money, leaving.

IRVINE
(to someone)
Turn off the jukebox. Lock the back.

Irvine leads Tyler, Jack and the other members to...

INT. TAVERN BASEMENT - SAME

A BOMB - SHELTER. Concrete walls. One BARE BULB above, Tyler standing directly beneath it. The guys mill around, finding partners. Everyone brims with eagerness, but tries to act cool. CHATTER gets LOUDER. Everyone spreads out, forming a circle, Tyler at the center.

JACK (V.O.)
Every week, Tyler gave the rules that he and I decided.

TYLER
Gentlemen! Welcome to fight club.

CHATTER DIES. A couple of COUGHS, FEET SHUFFLING, then SILENCE. During the following, we see men taking off their shirts, other taking off their shoes. A MAN takes off his wedding ring and puts it in his pocket.

TYLER
The first rule of fight club is -- you do not talk about fight club. The second rule of fight club is -- you do not talk about fight club. The third rule of fight club -- someone yells stop, goes limp, taps out, the fight is over. Fourth rule -- only two guys to a fight. Fifth rule - one fight at a time fellows.
(laughter)
Sixth rule -- no shirts, no shoes. Seventh rule -- fights will go on as long as they have to. And the eighth and final rule -- if this is your first night at fight club, you have to fight.

INT. TAVERN BASEMENT - LATER

We're in the middle of a fight, between a short guy, RICKY, and another guy, the WAITER of a restaurant.

JACK (V.O.)
This kid from work, Ricky, couldn't remember whether you ordered pens with blue ink or black. But Ricky was a god for ten minutes, when he trounced the MAITRE D' of the local food court.

HARDER, FASTER PUNCHES between the two fighters. SWEAT flies. SHOUTS become DEAFENING. Ricky's getting the best of his opponent, POUNDING him...

JACK (V.O.)
Sometimes all you could hear were flat, hard packing sounds over the yelling, or the wet choke when someone caught their breath and sprayed...

RICKY'S OPPONENT
(spittle-lipped)
Sssstop!!!...

INT. PHOTOCOPY ROOM -DAY

Jack stands over a copy machine, hit by flashes of light. He glances over his shoulder, watches RICKY, wearing an apron, push a supply cart. Ricky nods at Jack.

JACK (V.O.)
You weren't alive anywhere like you were there. But fight club only exists in the hours between when fight club starts and fight club ends.

INT. OFFICE PARK RESTAURANT - DAY

Jack, eating lunch, watches the BROKEN-NOSED WAITER -- from the above fight -- 

JACK (V.O.)
Even if I could tell someone they had a good fight, I wouldn't be talking to the same man.

The waiter approaches Jack, sets a refill soda down on the table. The two of them briefly make an eye contact.

JACK (V.O.)
Who you were in fight club is not who you were in the rest of the world. A guy came to fight club for the first time, his ass was a wad of cookie dough. After a few weeks, he was carved out of wood.

EXT. STREET - DUSK

Tyler and Jack walk, both smoking cigarettes.

JACK
If you could fight any celebrity, who would you fight?

TYLER
Alive or dead?

JACK
Doesn't matter, who'd be tough?

TYLER
Hemingway. You?

JACK
Shatner. I'd fight William Shatner.

They reach a BUS STOP as a BUS arrives, tossing their cigarettes, getting on board...

INT. BUS - DUSK

The bus is crowded. As Tyler and Jack walk toward the back, Jack studies the faces of OTHER PASSENGERS.

JACK (V.O.)
We all started seeing things differently. Everywhere we went, we were sizing things up.

They hold hand grips. Jack looks up an ADVERTISEMENT; a CALVIN KLEIN ad featuring a tan, bare-chested MUSCLE STUD.

JACK (V.O.)
I felt sorry for the guys packing into gyms, trying to look like Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger said they should.

JACK
(indicating the ad)
Is that how a man looks like?

Tyler looks at the C.K. advertisement and laughs.

TYLER
Ahh, self-improvement is masturbation. And self-destruction...

A MAN in a suit KNOCKS Tyler's shoulder as he passes. Tyler makes a grin.

INT. TAVERN BASEMENT - NIGHT

A SCREAM. TYLER HITS the floor, stomach first. HIS OPPONENT lands on the top of him, grappling, trying for a CHOKE HOLD. The surrounding CROWD, Jack included, SCREAMS at them...

MAN
Kick his ass!

SECOND MAN
Hit him again, man!

Tyler and the opponent wrestle desperately, and Tyler flips his attacker, gets on top, sprawling to pin him. Tyler turns -- starts reining PUNCHES into the opponents GROIN...

CUT TO:

Jack lands a couple of BLOWS to HIS OPPONENT'S STOMACH -- brings up a left uppercut that smashes the opponent's jaw. Tiny spatters of BLOOD adorn the walls, along with sweat. Jack catches the sight of a swollen-faced Tyler, watching appreciatively drinking a beer and smoking.

JACK (V.O.)
Fight club wasn't about winning or losing. It wasn't about words.

The opponent recovers, throws a headlock on Jack. Jack snakes his arm into a counter headlock. They wrestle like wild animals. The crowd CHEERS maniacally.

JACK (V.O.)
The hysterical shouting was in tongues, like at a Pentecostal Church.

Onlookers kneel to stay with the fight, cheering LOUDER. The opponent SMASHES Jack's head to the floor, over and over.

OPPONET
IS that is?

JACK
Stop! Stop!

JACK (V.O.)
When the fight was over, nothing solved but nothing mattered.

Everyone moves in as the opponent steps away. Tyler pushes through the crowd. They turn their attention to the floor, to a BLOOD MASK of Jack's face -- similar to the TEAR MASK on BOB'S SHIRT.

TYLER
Hey, cool.

JACK (V.O.)
Afterwards, we all felt saved.

Jack limply shakes his opponent's hand.

OPPONENT
Hey, how about next week?

JACK
How about next month?

OPPONENT
I hear you.

TYLER
Irvine you're in the middle.
(talking to another guy)
New guy, you too.

INT. HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM - NIGHT

A NURSE tends to Jack while Tyler watches.

JACK (V.O.)
Sometimes Tyler spoke for me.

TYLER
He fell down some stairs.

The Nurse doesn't look at Tyler, just keeps tending Jack.

JACK
I fell down some stairs.

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - BATHROOM - MORNING

Jack brushes his teeth and Tyler trims his fingernails.

JACK (V.O.)
Fight club became the reason to cut your hair short or trim your fingernails.

TYLER
Okay, any historical figure.

JACK
I'd fight Gandhi.

TYLER
Good answer.

JACK
How about you?

TYLER
Lincoln.

JACK
Lincoln?

TYLER
Mm. Big guy, big reach. Skinny guys fight till they're burger.

Jack reaches his mouth pulls -- yanks a TOOTH. Jack looks at it.

JACK
Fuck.

TYLER
Hey, even the Mona Lisa's falling apart.

Jack drops the tooth in the sink.

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - KITCHEN - LATE AFTERNOON 

The phone RINGS. Jack enters, buttoning his shirt. Tyler is in the background exercising with cudgels and making strange noises. Jack picks up the phone

JACK
Hello?

MARLA'S VOICE
Where have you been the last eight weeks?

JACK
Marla?

INTERCUT WITH...

INT. MARLA'S APARTMENT - SAME

EXTREME CLOSE UP OF Marla, who is on the bed and the phone cord is around her neck.

TYLER
Aaach!

Jack looks through the archway and sees Tyler exercising. Jack leans, cups the phone.

JACK
(quietly)
How'd you find me?

MARLA
You left that forwarding number. I haven't seen you at any support groups.

JACK
We split them up, that was the idea, remember?

MARLA
Yeah, but you haven't been going to yours.

JACK
How do you know?

MARLA
(smiling)
I cheated.

JACK
I found a new one.

Marla gets up from the bed.

MARLA
Really?

JACK
It's for men, only.

MARLA
Like the testicle thing?

TYLER
Wahhh!

JACK
This is a bad time...

MARLA
I've been going to Debtor's Anonymous. You want to see some really fucked up people?

JACK
I'm just on my way out...

MARLA
Me too. I got a stomach full of Xanax. I took what was left in the bottle. It might've been too much.

Jack looks exasperated, turns to LOOK INTO THE CAMERA.

JACK (V.O.)
Just picture watching Marla Singer throwing herself around her crummy apartment.

Marla lies on the bed again.

MARLA
This isn't a for-real-suicide things. This is probably one of those cry-for-help things.

JACK (V.O.)
This could go on for hours.

JACK
So, you're staying in tonight then?

MARLA
Do you wanna wait, and hear me describe death? Do you wanna listen and see if my spirit can use a phone?

Jack puts the handset on top of the phone, still off the hook, walks out the back door.

MARLA'S VOICE
Have you ever heard a death rattle before?

INT. BEDROOM - LATE NIGHT

GRUNTS of PLEASURE and EXERTION. Glimpses of TORSOS, ASSES, LEGS, ARMS, BREASTS, and FEMALE HAIR, all DRENCHED in SWEAT. Sheets RIP. Bodies hit the FLOOR. Insane GRUNTING and LAUGHING. A flash of MARLA'S FACE.

CUT TO:

INT. JACK'S BEDROOM - SUNRISE

Jack sits up in bed, looks around the room.

INT. 2ND FLOOR LANDING

Jack steps out of his room. The neighboring door is closed.

JACK (V.O.)
Tyler's door was closed. I'd been living here for two months and Tyler's door was never closed.

INT. BATHROOM - SAME

Jack stares into the TOILER, looking at FOUR USED CONDOMS.

INT. KITCHEN - MORNING

Jack sits on the table, eating breakfast, reading Reader's Digest. He hears FOOTSTEPS approaching.

JACK
You won't believe this dream I had last night.

MARLA walks in, straightening her dress, looks like she's been raped by a hurricane. Jack's jaw drops.

MARLA
Yeah, I can hardly believe anything about last night.

Marla goes to pour coffee. She takes a swig, GARGLES and SPITS it in the sink. she gives Jack a lascivious smile.

JACK
What--what are you doing here?

MARLA
What...?

JACK
This is my house, what are you doing in my house?

Marla stares at him a beat, then drops the cup in the sink.

MARLA
Fuck you.

Marla shoves open the door to the backyard and walks out. Before she can actually leave, she returns gets into the house again, grabs her satchel and then leaves. 

TYLER'S VOICE
Ha, ha! Ohh!

Jack turns and -- Tyler gets in the kitchen, staring after Marla. He's in his gummy flannel bathrobe. He grins at Jack and pours himself coffee.

TYLER
You've got some fucked up friends, I'm telling you! Limber though...silly coos. So, I come in last night, phone's off the hook. Guess who's on the other end.

JACK (V.O.)
I already knew the story before he told it to me.

INT. KITCHEN - LATE AFTERNOON (FLASHBACK)

MARLA'S VOICE
Have you ever heard a death rattle before?

Thru the archway: Tyler leans to look in, curious. Tyler enters, gently lifts the handset and listens.

MARLA'S VOICE
(from handset)
Do you think it'll live up to its name? Or it would just be a death...hairball?
(she coughs)
Prepare to evacuate soul...

Tyler smiles.

INT. MARLA'S BUILDING - 8TH FLOOR LANDING - LATE AFTERNOON (FLASHBACK)

Tyler, a wry smile on his face, ambles up the stairs, smoking a cigarette and looking at the rotting walls. He reaches at the top of the stairs and heads for Marla's room.

MARLA'S VOICE (CONTINUOUS)
Ten, nine, eight...

JACK (V.O.)
Now how could Tyler, off all people, think it was a bad think that Marla Singer was about to die?

MARLA'S VOICE (CONTINUOUS)
Five, four, three--

Tyler puts out his cigarette and knocks Marla's door.

MARLA'S VOICE (CONTINUOUS)
--oh, hung on.

Marla goes out, looks around. Marla's hand shoots out and grabs him...

INT. MARLA'S ROOM - CONTINUOUS (FLASHBACK)

Marla pulls Tyler inside and shuts the door. Her drugged eyes look all over him.

MARLA
You got here fast. Did I call you? Huh? Hey.

Marla staggers and sits on the bed. She slides off, along with the blanket and sheets, to the floor. Tyler laughs.

MARLA
The mattresses are all sealed in slippery plastic.

Tyler studies her with cynical curiosity, looks at a DILDO lying atop a dresser. Marla follows his gaze.

MARLA
Oh, don't worry. It's not a threat to you.

SIRENS and vehicles SCREECHING outside can be HEARD, doors opening and SLAMMING, running FOOTFALLS.

MARLA
Oh, fuck! Somebody called the cops!...

She gets to her feet.

INT. HALLWAY (FLASHBACK)

Tyler and Marla go out of her room. Marla tries to LOCK her door, but Tyler GRABS her toward the STAIRCASE. COPS and PARAMEDICS charge up with oxygen and medical kids. Marla and Tyler flatten against the wall to let them past. Tyler, playing the indifferent, dances.

COP
Hey -- Where's 513?

MARLA
(with a gentle voice, pointing)
End of the hall.

Tyler grabs her and they descend the stairs. The rescuers keep running.

MARLA
(calling after)
The girl who lived there used to be a charming, lovely girl. She's lost faith in herself.

COP
Miss Singer! Let us help!

MARLA
She's a monster!

COP
You have every reason to live!

MARLA
She's infectious human waste! Good luck trying to save her!

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT (FLASHBACK)

Tyler makes coffee. Marla slouches against the refrigerator.

MARLA
If I fall asleep, I'm done for. You're gonna keep me up... all night.

INT. KITCHEN - MORNING (RESUMING)

Tyler chuckles, shakes his head.

TYLER
Uh, fucking unbelievable!

JACK (V.O.)
He was obviously able to handle it.

Tyler stands across from Jack, gets a cigarette from a pack.

TYLER
You know what I mean, you fucked her.

JACK
No, I didn't.

TYLER
Never?

JACK
No.

TYLER
You're not into her, are you?

JACK
No, God, not at all.

JACK (V.O.)
I am Jack's Raging Bile Duct.

TYLER
You're sure? You can tell me.

JACK
Believe me, I'm sure.

JACK (V.O.)
Put a gun to my head and paint the walls with my brains.

TYLER
That's good, because she's a predator posing as the house pet. Stay away from that one.
(laughing)
And the shit that came out from this woman's mouth, I ain't never heard!

INT. TYLER'S ROOM - NIGHT (FLASHBACK)

Tyler smokes, post-coital. Marla lays down.

MARLA
My God! I haven't been fucked like that since grade school!

Tyler stares at her.

INT. KITCHEN - MORNING (RESUMING)

TYLER
Uhh!

Tyler laughs, shakes his head. Jack's reading his Reader's Digest just a little too tight.

JACK (V.O.)
How could Tyler not go for that? The night before last he was splicing sex organs into "Cinderella."

JACK
Marla doesn't need a lover, she needs a fucking case worker.

TYLER
She needs a wash. And she's in love with sport-fucking.

JACK (V.O.)
She'd invaded my support groups, now she's invaded my home.

TYLER
Hey, hey, sit down... Now listen, I can't have you talking her about me--

JACK
Why would I ta--

TYLER
If you say anything about me, or what goes in this house to her or to anybody, we're done. Now promise me.

JACK
Ok.

TYLER
You promise?

JACK
Yeah, I promise.

TYLER
Promise.

JACK
I just said I promise! Wh--

TYLER
That was three times you promised.

Tyler gets up and leaves. Jack sits smoldering.

JACK (V.O.)
If only I had wasted a couple of minutes and gone to watch Marla Singer die, none of this would have happened.

INT. JACK'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

Jack lies calmly on his bed, reading his Reader's Digest. SOUNDS of SEX, THUMBS and CRASHES from beyond the wall.

MARLA'S VOICE
(muffles through wall)
Yeah! Ahh! Ohh! Harder! Harder! Harder!

INT. BASEMENT - NIGHT

SOUNDS of RAIN. Jack flips FUSES off, then walks upstairs.

JACK (V.O.)
I could've moved to another room, on the third floor -- where I might not have heard them. But I didn't.

MARLA'S VOICE
Oh, baby!

INT. 2ND FLOOR LANDING - SAME

Jack walks, HEARS Marla SCREAM in orgasm. He reaches the landing. Tyler's door is ajar. Jack peeks in...Marla's legs are sprawled on the bed. The door PUSHES OPEN WIDER -- Tyler naked, stands CLOSE TO CAMERA.

TYLER
What are you doing?

Jack steps back.

JACK
Just...going to bed.

Tyler scratches his head, wears A RUBBER GLOVE.

TYLER
You want to finish her off?

JACK
Nah... No thanks you.

MARLA
I found the cigarettes.

Jack continues toward his room and Tyler closes the door.

MARLA
Who are you talking to?

TYLER
Shut up!

INT. BATHROOM - NIGHT

Jack brushes his teeth.

JACK (V.O.)
I became the calm, little center of the world. I was the Zen master.

CLOSE UP - COMPUTER MONITOR

Haiku is BEING TYPED in a trendy, italicized font.

 "Worker bees can leave
                Even drones can fly away
                               The queen is their slave"

JACK (V.O.)
I wrote a little haiku poems.

INT. JACK'S OFFICE - DAY

Jack's clothes are PERMANENTLY STAINED WITH BLOOD. He sits in Zen pose, cigarette in mouth, finishes typing Haiku.

JACK (V.O.)
I e-mailed them to everyone.

He hits "SEND". Boss enters.

BOSS
Is that your blood?

JACK
Some of it, yeah.

Boss stares at Jack like he's from Mars.

BOSS
You can't smoke in here. Take the rest of the day off. Come back Monday with some clean clothes. Get yourself together.

INT. HALLWAY - SAME

Jack's leaving, looks like a war casualty, passing COWORKERS who coldly stare at him. His face is totally passive.

JACK (V.O.)
I got right in everyone's hostile little face. Yes, these are my bruises from fighting. Yes, I'm comfortable with that. I am enlightened.

EXT. PAPER STREET - SUNSET

Jack walks toward the HOUSE.

JACK (V.O.)
You give up the condo life, give up all your flaming worldly possessions, go live in a dilapidated house in the toxic waste part of town...

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE ENTRANCE - SAME

Jack walks in. SOUNDS of VIOLENT SEX and a POLAROID CAMERA from upstairs. Pieces of PLASTER fall from the ceiling.

JACK (V.O.)
...and you have to come home to this.

INT. PAPER ST. HOUSE - KITCHEN - MORNING

Jack is without pants. He runs water in the sink, and scrubs at the blood stains with a tooth-brush. The PHONE RINGS. Marla and Tyler's voices are still HEARD. Jack answers it.

JACK
Hello?

INTERCUT WITH...

INT. POLICE STATION - OFFICE

A cop, DETECTIVE STERN, refers to a file.

DETECTIVE STERN
Yes. This is Detective Stern with the arson unit. We have some new information about the "incident" at your former condo.

Marla and Tyler cannot be heard now.

JACK
Yes?

DETECTIVE STERN
I don't know if you're aware -- but is seems that someone sprayed freon into your front door lock, then tapped it with a chisel to shatter the cylinder.

JACK
No, I wasn't aware of that at all.

JACK (V.O.)
I am Jack's Cold Sweat.

DETECTIVE STERN
Does this sound strange to you?

JACK
Uh, yes sir, strange, very strange.

Jack starts to sweat.

DETECTIVE STERN
The dynamite...

JACK
Dynamite?

DETECTIVE STERN
...left a residue of ammonium oxalate and potassium per chloride. Do you know what this means?

JACK
No, what does it mean?

DETECTIVE STERN
It means it was homemade.

JACK
I'm sorry...this is just coming as quite a shock to me, sir...

DETECTIVE STERN
See, whoever set this homemade dynamic could've blown out the pilot light days before the actual explosion. The gas was just a detonator.

JACK
Who could've done such a thing?

DETECTIVE STERN
I'll ask the questions.

TYLER
(whispering in Jack's ear)
Tell him...

Jack almost leaps out his skin, startled; looks to see Tyler standing right next to him.

TYLER
(overlap w/below)
"Tell him the liberator who destroyed my property has re-aligned my paradigm of perception".

DETECTIVE STERN
Excuse me, are you there?

JACK
I am listening, but it's a little hard to know what to make of all this.

DETECTIVE STERN
Have you recently made enemies with anyone who might have access to homemade dynamite?

JACK
Enemies?

TYLER
"I reject the basic assumptions of civilization, especially the importance of material possession!"

Jack cups the receiving.

DETECTIVE STERN
Son, this is serious.

JACK
I know it's serious.

DETECTIVE STERN
I mean that.

JACK
Yes, it's very serious. Look, nobody takes this more seriously than me, the condo was my life! Okay? I loved every stick of furniture in that place. That was not just a bunch of stuff that got destroyed, it was me!

JACK (V.O.)
I'd like to thank the Academy...

DETECTIVE STERN
Isn't this a not good time for you?

TYLER
Tell him you fuckin' did it!

JACK
(to Tyler)
Shhh!

TYLER
Tell him you blew it off! That's what he wants to hear.

Tyler goes upstairs

DETECTIVE STERN
Are you still there?

JACK
Wait. Are you saying that I'm a suspect?!

DETECTIVE STERN
No, no. I may have to talk to you a little further, how about let me know if you leave town, okay?

JACK
Okay.

Jacks hangs up. Jack turns away continues to scrub his pants. Marla's FOOTSTEPS can be HEARD coming downstairs...Jack really grinds the soap against the pants, splashing water. He turns, sees Marla enter. Marla lights a cigarette.

JACK (V.O.)
Except for their humping, Tyler and Marla were never in the same room. My parents pulled this exact act for years.

MARLA
The condom is the glass slipper of our generation. You slip it on when you meet a stranger. You...dance all night...and then you throw it away! The condom, I mean. Not the stranger.

Marla chuckles.

JACK
What?

MARLA
I got this dress at a thrift store for $1. 

JACK
It was worth every penny.

MARLA
(seductive)
It's a bridesmaid's dress. Someone loved it intensely for one day, then tossed it.

Marla moves very close to Jack.

MARLA
Like a Christmas tree -- so special, then....

Jack becomes very aware of having no pants on, presses against the counter. Marla pulls her hemline further up. She leans in very close to Jack's ear, whispers hoarsely:

MARLA
(CONTINUED)
...bam -- it's on the side of the road, tinsel still clinging to it...Like sex crime victims, underwear inside-out, bound with electrical tape.

JACK
(coldly)
Well, then it suits you.

MARLA
You can borrow it sometime.

Marla backs away going UPSTAIRS.

TYLER (O.S.)
Get rid of her.

Jack turns to see Tyler going UPSTAIRS.

JACK
Why can't you get rid of her?

TYLER
Don't mention me.

Marla's FOOTSTEPS are coming DOWNSTAIRS. Jack looks to the archway, then back at -- Tyler's GONE. Marla enters looking for something on the junk strewn table.

JACK (V.O.)
I'm six years old again, passing messages between my parents.

JACK
I really think it's time you got out of here.

Marla ignores, still searching table, tossing things, pushing other things to the floor.

MARLA
Don't worry I'm leaving.

JACK
Not like we don't love your little visit.

Marla finds what she wanted, a pack of cigarettes. She move up into Jack's face.

MARLA
You're such a nutcase, I can't even begin to keep up.

As she exits the door, she sings "This Merry-Go-Round" from "Valley of the Dolls." Jack watches her trough the kitchen window.

JACK
Thanks, bye.

Jack turns. Tyler is behind him, chuckling.

TYLER
You kids...

JACK
Wh--Why do you still waste time with her?

TYLER
I'll say this about Marla: At least she's trying to hit bottom.

JACK
What, and I'm not?

TYLER
Sticking feathers up your butt does not make you a chicken.

JACK
What are we doing tonight?

TYLER
Tonight we make soap.

JACK
Really?

TYLER
To make soap, first we render fat.

EXT. FENCED - IN BIOHAZARD WASTE DUMP SITE - NIGHT

Tyler and Jack jump off the fence. Tyler pulls Jack behind a DUMPSTER, one of DOZENS. FOOTSTEPS. A FLASHLIGHT BEAM. A silhouette of a SECURITY GUARD moves along the perimeter, flashlight first. He walks away.

MOVE BACK to Tyler and Jack, who emerge from hiding. 

TYLER
The salt balance has to be just right, so the best fat for making soap, comes from humans...

JACK
Wait, what is this place?

TYLER
A liposuction clinic.

Tyler eagerly grabs the lid of the closest dumpster. From the dumpster, Tyler pulls out an industrial sized thick plastic bag full of ORANGE THICK LIQUID.

TYLER
Aha! Pay dirt! The richest creamiest fat in the world! Fat of the land!

TIME CUT: Tyler and Jack are back over the fence. Tyler is outside the fence and Jack's inside, throwing BAGS of fat to Tyler. One bag RIPS over the fence, spilling the goo down the chain-link fence. Jack slips and slides. Tyler tries to save it. Jack is wounded by the fence.

JACK
Oh, God! Oh!

TYLER
Get another one. 

As Tyler tries to take the ripped bag, he falls down.

INT. KITCHEN - NIGHT

Jack and Tyler each stir a boiling pot.

TYLER
As the fat renders, the tallow floats to the surface. Like in Boy Scouts.

JACK
I can imagine you as a Boy Scout.

TYLER
Keep stirring. Once the tallow hardens, we skim off a layer of glycerin. If you were to add nitric acid, you got nitroglycerin. If you were to add sodium nitrate and a dash of sawdust, you got dynamite. Yeah, with enough soap we could blow just about anything.

JACK (V.O.)
Tyler was full of useful information.

TYLER
Now, ancient people found their clothes got cleaner if they washed them at a certain spot in the river. You know why?

JACK
Why?

TYLER
Human sacrifices were once made on the hills above this river. Bodies burnt. Water speeded through the wood ashes to create lye.

Tyler grabs a can.

TYLER
This is lye -- the crucial ingredient. The lye combined with the melted fat of the bodies, till a thick white soapy discharge crept into the river. May I see your hand, please?

Tyler licks his lips until they're gleaming wet. He takes Jack's hands and KISSED the back of it.

JACK
What is this?

Tyler pours a bit of the flaked lye onto Jack's hand.

TYLER
This is chemical burn.

Jack's whole body JERKS. Tyler holds tight to Jack's hand and arm. Tears well in Jack's eyes; his face tightens.

TYLER
It will hurt more than you've ever been burned and you will have a scar.

Jack looks--the burn is swollen, glossy, in the shape of Tyler's kiss. Jack's face spasms.

JACK (V.O.)
If guided meditation worked for cancer, it could work for this.

SHOT OF A GREEN MAPLE LEAF, GLISTENING WITH DEW. RESUME:

Tyler looks as Jack's glazed and detached eyes.

TYLER
Stay with the the pain, don't shove to center. 

JACK
No!

TYLER
The first soap was made from the ashes of heroes. Like the first monkeys shot into space. Without pain, without sacrifice we would have nothing.

JACK (V.O.)
I tried not to think of the words "searing" or "flesh". 

SHOT OF A FOREST, IN GENTLE SPRING RAINFALL. RESUME:

Jack, snapping back, tries to jerk his hand away. Tyler keeps holding of it and their arms KNOCK UTENSILS off the table. Tyler JERKS Jack's hands, getting Jack's attention.

TYLER
Stop it! This is your pain -- this is your burning hand. It's right here! Look at it.

JACK
I'm going to my cave. I'm going to my cave to find my power animal!

SHOT OF THE INSIDE OF JACK'S FROZEN ICE CAVE. RESUME:

Tyler JERKS Jack's hand again. Jack re-focuses on Tyler...

TYLER
No, don't deal with this the way those dead people do. Come on!

JACK
I get the point, ok,  please!

TYLER
No, what you're feeling is premature enlightenment.

SHOT OF INSIDE THE ICE CAVE - ON MARLA, LYING NAKED UNDER A FUR COAT, TURNING HER HEAD TO LOOK TOWARD US. RESUMING:

Jack tries to pull his hand free. Tyler won't let go. Jack's eyes glaze over again. Tyler SLAPS Jack's face, regaining his attention.

TYLER
This is the greatest moment of your life, man, and you're off somewhere--

Jack tries to speak, whiny from pain.

TYLER
Shut up! Our fathers were our models for God. And if our fathers bailed, what does that tell you about God?

SHOT OF INSIDE THE ICE CAVE - NAKED MARLA PULLS JACK DOWN ON TOP OF HER - JACK IS ABOUT TO KISS HER BUT CIGARETTE SMOKE COMES FROM MARLA'S MOUTH - JACK COUGHS. RESUME:

Tyler SLAPS Jack's face again.

TYLER
Listen to me. You have to consider the possibility that God doesn't like you. He never wanted you. In all probability, he hates you. This is not the worst thing that can happen...

JACK
It isn't?

TYLER
We don't need Him.

JACK
We don't, we don't, I agree.

TYLER
Fuck damnation, man. Fuck redemption. We are God's unwanted children. So be it!

Jack looks Tyler -- they lock eyes. Jack does his best to stifle his spasms of pain, his body a quivering, coiled knot. He bolts toward the sink, but Tyler holds it.

TYLER
Listen ,you can run water over your hand and make it worse, or -- look at me -- or you can use vinegar to neutralize the burn. 

JACK
Please let me have some, please.

But first you have to give up. First, you have to know, with no fear, know that someday you are going to die. Until you know that, you are useless.

Jack spasms with a shiver of pain...

JACK
You don't know how this feels!

Tyler shows Jack a LYE-BURNED KISS SCAR on his own hand. Tears begin to drip from Jack's eyes. 

TYLER
It's only after we lost everything that we are free to do anything.

JACK
Okay...

Tyler grabs a bottle of VINEGAR -- pours it over Jack's wound. Jack closes his eyes, holds his hand,...slumps to the floor.

TYLER
Congratulations. You're one step closer to hitting bottom.

INT. BARNEY'S - DAY

Jack and Tyler, wait as a BUYER, Suzie, fills out forms. There are bars of "The Paper Street Soap Company" soap on the counter. Jack looks life he's half-expecting to get arrested. His hand is BANDAGED.

JACK (V.O.)
Tyler sold the soap to department stores at twenty dollars a bar. God knows what they charged.

SUZY
This is the best soap.

TYLER
Why, thank you, Suzie.

Tyler smiles and turns to Jack.

JACK (V.O.)
It was beautiful. We were selling rich women their own fat asses back to them.

INT. JACK'S OFFICE - DAY

Jack sits at his desk. Boss enters.

JACK (V.O.)
He was wearing his yellow tie. I didn't even wear a tie to work anymore.

Boss holds a piece of PAPER and starts reading it.

BOSS
"The first rule of fight club, is you don't talk about fight club?"

Jack stares stoically.

JACK (V.O.)
I'm half asleep again. I must've left the original in the copy machine.

BOSS
"The second rule of fight club..--." Is this yours?

JACK
Huh?

BOSS
Pretend you're me. Make a managerial decision. You find this. What would you do?

JACK
Well, I got to tell ya...I'd be very, very careful who I talked to about this. Because the person who wrote that...is dangerous.

Jack rises slowly.

JACK
And this button-down oxford cloth psycho, might just snap at any moment, stalking from office to office with an Armatile AR-10 Carbine-Gas semiautomatic weapon, bitterly pumping round after round into colleagues and co-workers.

Jack moves very close to Boss.

JACK
Might be someone you've known for years...someone very, very close to you.

JACK (V.O.)
Tyler's words coming out of my mouth. And I used to be such a nice guy.

Jack GRABS the paper, takes a look, and creases it.

JACK
Or maybe, you shouldn't be bringing me every little piece of trash you happen to pick up.

Jack puts the paper in his TRASH. Boss stares with a tinge of outrage, a tinge of fear. PHONE RINGS. Jack answers it.

JACK
Compliance and Liability.

INTERCUT WITH...

MARLA'S APARTMENT - SAME

Marla is sitting on her bed.

MARLA
My tit's gonna rot off.

JACK
(to Boss)
Could you excuse me? I need to take this.

Boss goes to door, stares at Jack a beat, then leaves. Jack sits in his chair.

JACK
(into phone)
What are you talking about?

MARLA
 I need you to check and see if there's a lump in my breast.

JACK
Go to hospital.

MARLA
I can't afford to throw money away on a doctor...

JACK
I don't know about this, Marla.

MARLA
Please?

Jack LOOKS INTO CAMERA.

JACK (V.O.)
She didn't call Tyler. I'm neutral in her book.

EXT. MARLA'S HOTEL - SUNSET

Jack walks down the side walk, seeing Marla take TWO BOXES from a VAN with the sign "MEALS ON WHEELS".

JACK
That's nice. Taking food to...
(reads the boxes:)
"Mrs. Haniver" and..."Mrs. Raines." Who are they exactly?

MARLA
Tragically, they're dead. I'm alive and I'm in poverty. You want any?

JACK
No, thanks.

MARLA
I got one for you.

JACK
Thanks for the thought. 

MARLA
What happened to your hand?

Jack awkwardly puts his bandaged hand behind his hand.

JACK
Uh,...nothing.

CUT TO:


~ PART 1 ~ PART 2 ~ PART 3 ~ PART 4 ~

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