P:O.V. No.7 - Three Recent Short Fiction Films, GOODBYE MOM

An outline of Ariel Gordon's Goodbye Mom

Richard Raskin

1. Prelude (shots 1-7)

A young man, about 25, enters a busy supermarket in the evening and picks out three small items. He then picks out a magazine and gets on line at one of the check-out counters, standing behind a middle-aged woman.

Shot 4

Shot 7

2. The encounter (shots 8-56)

The woman turns around to look at the young man and seems astonished. The following dialogue ensues as he tries to continue reading his magazine and finally gives up:

Shot 8

Shot 9

WOMAN. You look like my son... You're really just like him.
MAN. Well, I don't know what to say.
WOMAN. Your features are the same.
MAN. Really?
WOMAN. You have the same eyes... May I touch you?
MAN. No, no... I'm sorry.
WOMAN. He would say that too... He's shy and quiet like you. You won't believe me, but you have the same tone of voice.
MAN. And so what?
WOMAN. He died in a car accident. The other driver was drunk. If he were alive, he would be your age. He would have graduated. And he would probably have a family. And I would be a grandmother. (She begins to weep.)
MAN. Please don't cry.

Shot 36

Shot 37

WOMAN. You know, you are his double. God sent you to me. Blessed be the Lord for letting me see my son again. (She hugs him and he accepts the embrace.)
MAN. Don't upset yourself, Ma'am. Life goes on. You have to go on.
WOMAN. Can I ask you a favor.
MAN. All right.
WOMAN. I never had the chance to say goodbye to him. His death was so sudden. At least could you call me Mom... and say goodbye when I leave?... I know you think I'm crazy. But I need to get this off my chest.
MAN. But I couldn't.
WOMAN. Please?
MAN (reluctantly giving in). All right.

3. "Goodbye Mom" (shots 57-63)

The woman's many purchases are checked out by a cashier as the man stands reading his magazine. The last bag of merchandise is loaded into the woman's shopping cart, after which she walks sadly away, then turns toward the man.

WOMAN (waving). Goodbye, Son.
MAN (embarrassed). Goodbye, Mom.
WOMAN. Goodbye, dear.
MAN. Goodbye, Mom.

Shot 58

Shot 62

She turns and exits from the supermarket.

4. The man's turn at the register (shots 64-80)

As the cashier checks out the man's few items, a buzzer goes off.

CASHIER. I don't know what's wrong. It doesn't recognize this article. The manager will be here in a minute.

The manager arrives and types in the price of the item.

CASHIER. Thank you.
MANAGER. You're welcome.
She finishes checking out the man's few items.
CASHIER. That will be 3, 488 pesos.
MAN. What? It can't be.
CASHIER. Yes, it's right.

Shot 74

Shot 75

MAN. But miss, I only have three things!
CASHIER. What about the things your mother took?
As the shock of recognition hits him, he remembers the brooding face of the woman who had conned him, as she turned and left the supermarket.

Shot 78

Shot 79

Shot 79/80 dissolve

Shot 80

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