Job and the Burger


Here’s a scene that I wrote for my screenwriting class.  The prompt was that we needed to write a scene that reveals the flaw in the main character.  It could be no longer than 3 pages and had to have dialogue.  Can you guess who my protagonist is and what is his flaw?

(Note: the formatting is less than desirable here.  The first two caps (A BURGER and A MAN) are scene introductions.  The rest are dialogue, which i have painstakingly formated in the center.)

JOB AND THE BURGER

———————————-

A BURGER
…Sits on a food tray. There are some fries and a drink next to it.

A MAN
…Glares at the burger on the counter of the fast food restaurant, incredulous. The fools! 34 years old, JOB is a nuclear bomb, anger barely contained by the paper thin veil of society, ready to go of at any moment.

JOB
What’s this?

BRITTANY, 19, looks up from filing her nails. For Brittany, life is perpetually dull, and each day always proves more boring than the last.

BRITTANY
You’re food, sir.

Job continues to glare at the burger, like it had just slapped him. He lifts up the bun. Lettuce. Lettuce.

JOB
This isn’t what I ordered.

BRITTANY
You asked for lettuce.

Job screws up his face, and forces the red back down.

JOB
No, I didn’t. I hate lettuce. I asked for a burger without lettuce.

Brittany rolls her eyes and dramatically punches some keys on her computer like she was playing whack-a-mole. She turns her screen around so Job can see.

BRITTANY
One burger. Ketchup, tomato, cheese. With lettuce.

Brittany goes back to filing her nails. Job stares at the screen.

JOB
Can you just make me another one?

Brittany pauses her filing.

BRITTANY
No.

Job’s hands begin to shake visibly. He breathes deeply. It isn’t working. A man behind Job taps him on the shoulder. Job turns to see fat, middle aged man with his equally fat family standing behind him.

MAN
Sir, just take your damn burger. We’re hungry too.

Job roars like a lion. He grabs the food tray and smashes it on the counter, fries flying like shrapnel from an IED.
He lifts the tray up and smashes the man in the side of his face. The man goes down among the raining fries.

The man’s family cries in fright and his wife tries to tend to him.

Job throws the tray like a frisbee and pegs the man at the drive-through window in the back of the head.

JOB
BULLSHIT! I DIDN’T WANT LETTUCE!

Job pulls a revolver from a pocket inside his jacket and fires a round into the air. The bullet strikes the ceiling and chalky dust covers Job’s face, making him even more terrifying.

The other patrons make a mad dash for the exits. Job hears them running and spins around. He does his best to point his gun at all of the dozen patrons.

JOB (CONT’D)
NOBODY’S LEAVING. IM GONNA GET MY BURGER, AND WE’RE ALL GONNA SIT DOWN AND HAVE A NICE FUCKING MEAL. YOU GOT THAT

Job points his gun at a frightened, college aged woman by the door.  Not so fast!

JOB (CONT’D)
YOU GOT THAT?

WOMAN
Y-y-y-yes?

JOB
GOOD!

Job spins back around to Brittany, who has dropped her nail file and is staring at Job like a deer in headlights. This is the best day of her life.

BRITTANY
Ok. Ok! Here!

She reaches behind her and grabs a new burger. She opens it up and removes the lettuce, and then hands it to Job.
Job puts it back on the tray.

JOB
SOME FRIES TOO!

Brittany gives him some fries. Job glances quickly between his food and Brittany, and then nods.
He holds the food to his chest like a bag of money from a bank heist, and slowly backs away, randomly pointing his gun at people behind the counter.

JOB (CONT’D)
Good, thank you. Good.

Job sits down at a table and places his food in front of him. Everyone is eyeing him nervously.

JOB (CONT’D)
It’s ok. We’ll all be alright. Sit down and eat. I got my burger.

Everyone hesitantly sits down and eats. Job smiles happily at his food and takes a bite. We can hear sirens in the distance, steadily approaching, like a distant storm.

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