EXT. COLLEGE CAMPUS – DAY
Bianca and Franco exit the car. She immediately heads
for the gathering demonstration. He hesitates, watching
her. More vehicles enter the lot. Students continue
pouring in, swelling the ranks. He notices out of state
license plates, several from Michigan, a few from
Come on, Franco.
His name on her lips draws him to her. She waits and
firmly grasps his hand. They jog from blacktop onto
grass and blend into a crowd outfitted to engage any
and all opposing thought espoused along the way.
Banners unfurled, the throng begins to improvise a
No more bombings! No more war! No
more bombings! No more war! No more
bombings! No more war!
They move en masse from the east lawn onto concrete,
over walkways feeding into lecture halls and cafeterias,
courting more supporters as they forge a widening sweep.
A young man with shoulder length hair, a red, white and
blue headband and decorated special forces jacket,
breaks from the sea of marchers and sticks his head
between the couple from behind, wrapping his arms
around them both. A cloud of marijuana smoke streams
from his mouth.
Artie! When did you get here?
ARCHIBALD CUNNINGHAM, activist and political science
major, hands her a joint.
Get a hit.
Bianca takes the joint, tokes deep and holds it in. She
offers it to Franco, but he shakes his head. She
exhales, takes another hit and hands it back.
So when did you get here?
When did I get here? When am I not
Artie takes a few more tokes, snuffs the joint and
sticks it in his pocket.
Who’s your greaser friend?
I’m right here, boss. You can ask
me straight up.
Alright then. Who the hell are you?
Just a working stiff on a lunch
You two friends?
What’s it to you?
A sort of get to know one another
He has no business here.
Stick around. You’ll find out.
Artie, you’ve said enough.
Enough. You’ve said enough.
Enough what? What are you talking
A march on the administration
Franco looks at Bianca.
We’ve had ROTC recruiting on
So we don’t want them here.
Where’d you get the jacket, tough
Franco? How perfect is that?
What’s your problem?
How do you know me?
Christ. This is getting thicker by
Unseen by front line marchers, a convoy of National
Guard personnel carriers begins moving into the parking
lot behind the demonstrators.
How do you know my name?
I just do. Why does it matter?
He stops and pulls her from the ranks. Artie stops as
This doesn’t concern you. Keep
I’m ok. Go.
Artie clenches his fist, pumps it above his head and
rejoins the march.
No more bombings! No more war!
Why is it so important?
Was it an accident? Showing up when
you did today?
Like when you came in the store to
look at water pipes?
I was curious.
I’ll bet you were.
So why are you here? Why did you
You brought me. Remember? And how
do you know my name?
You said all your friends were
Irish, Italian, Catholic.
We’ve fallen behind. We have to
She takes his hand and starts to run, pulling him
along. As the couple battles its way to the front,
demonstrators draw close to the administration
building. They are met there and stopped by the college
president, who addresses the crowd through a bullhorn.
All of you, please listen
carefully. Assuring the safety of
every student participating in the
peaceful expression of free speech
on this campus being of primary
importance to the state, it is my
duty to inform you, that
approximately thirty minutes ago, a
bomb threat was called into my
office. Recent occurrences
throughout the country have taught
us to take all such threats with
the utmost seriousness. If what the
caller claims is true, the bomb is
set to detonate in the
administration building in roughly
ten minutes. All staff has been
safely evacuated, and the building
has been cordoned off. We ask for
your patience and sound judgment,
and that you bear with us until the
area can be swept clear of
suspicious devices and deemed safe
to reenter. I thank you all for
Still undetected by front-line demonstrators, National
Guard troops begin to deploy, advancing on the students
from behind. Some late arriving students run ahead to
warn the rest.
What do we do now?
Wait and watch. What else can we
This is bad.
A disturbance erupts behind them. Students turn to see
what’s going on. A young man running breakneck toward
them hollers out:
Franco grabs Bianca’s arm.
Come on. I know how these boys
play. We don’t want any part of
Yes we do.
Are you crazy?
Let go of me!
Caught between a bomb blast and advancing National
Guard, student leaders huddle to rethink their
I don’t know about any of you, but
I’m staying put. This is our
campus. Troops don’t belong here.
This may be our campus, but there
are outside agitators. This is
supposed to be a peace march. No
one invited them. At least I
From the rear, the first line of helmets, shields and
clubs can be seen advancing toward them. On the campus
perimeter, sirens blare. Countless numbers of state and
local police, heavily armed and in riot gear, begin to
Whatever we decide, we have to do
Bianca clenches her fist, turns and faces the advancing
troops. You could hear their boots pound the concrete,
hear the clatter of their shields. She raises her fist
high overhead, pumps it forcefully and starts to chant:
Kent State! Kent State! Kent State!
The marchers follow suit, pumping their fists and joining
Kent State! Kent State! Kent State!
The advancing Guard comes to a halt. The troops put on
gas masks. The chanting stops. An edgy silence takes
its place. Franco grabs Bianca’s shoulder.
This is no joke. Somebody’s gonna
Are you afraid?
Yes, I’m afraid.
For myself. For you.
A huge explosion obliterates the silence. Glass and
shrapnel rip through doors and windows of the
administration building. Stunned faces rocked by the
violent concussion turn toward the blast. Smoke billows
high above campus rooftops, raining debris onto cars
and lush green lawns.