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Killer Elite

KILLER ELITE

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

EXT. 1980S MEXICO

Some TITLE CARDS go on about how the 1980s was rife with ASSASSINATION and COVERT OPERATIONS, as opposed to terrible pop music and even worse facial hair. Meanwhile, JASON STATHAM and ROBERT DE NIRO are eating burritos at a BAR.

ROBERT DE NIRO

Whatever happened to "show, don't tell"?

JASON STATHAM

We've no time for basic storytelling principles here. Us elite covert operatives have got some assassinating to do!

JASON and ROBERT set to assassinating their target COVERTLY - blowing up several cars, gunning down HENCHMEN in broad daylight and shooting at the POLICE.

JASON STATHAM

We were working with quite a loose definition of "covert", right?

JASON discovers the target's SON was travelling with him, and was almost ACCIDENTALLY KILLED.

JASON STATHAM

My guilty conscience over this means I can no longer work as an elite covert operative. I'm officially retiring... unless of course ONE FINAL JOB should come my way. But what are the chances of that happening?

EXT. 1980S OMAN (AKA MIDDLE EAST-LITE)

ROBERT is captured, and used as a HOSTAGE to lure JASON into the clutches of shady hitman liaison ADEWALE AKINNUOYE-AGBAJE.

ADEWALE AKINNUOYE-AGBAJE

...

JASON STATHAM

Whoah, hold on, I can't pronounce that shit. I'm just going to call you "Triple A" from now on.

TRIPLE A

I feel like that's a little racist.

JASON STATHAM

It's racism for convenience's sake, which as we all know is the best kind of racism.

TRIPLE A

OK honkey, I'll run with it. I'm here to tempt you out of retirement for ONE FINAL JOB.

JASON STATHAM

Ha! That's uncanny.

TRIPLE A takes JASON to meet SHEIKH RODNEY AFIF, who is holding ROBERT hostage.

RODNEY AFIF

So Robert cocked up his last job. I think it's because he's old and lazy, and doesn't care about his work anymore.

(pause)

There may or may not be an obvious subtext here.

JASON STATHAM

Very meta.

RODNEY AFIF

You need to assassinate three ex-SAS men, and make it look like an accident. And just to spice things up, I only have six months to live, due to a terminal case of Severe Plottal Contrivancy.

(coughs unconvincingly)

JASON STATHAM

I presume if I don't make it in time, you'll have Robert killed, because all Arabs are unscrupulous criminals. Wait, is that racist, or just a tired and offensive narrative cliche?

TRIPLE A

It's both.

JASON stops to check on ROBERT.

ROBERT DE NIRO

Sorry you're stuck doing all the work while I just sit here doing as little on-screen action as possible. Wait, I'm not sorry at all, that's exactly what I signed up for.

JASON STATHAM

Well, I can't resist ONE FINAL JOB. Time to put on my best grim expression, go kick some ass, and find the bastards who kidnapped that Chinese girl.

ROBERT DE NIRO

Jason, I think you're getting confused with "Safe".

JASON STATHAM

You're right - I mean, find the bastards who kidnapped that Chinese girl's family.

ROBERT DE NIRO

Not quite, that's "The Transporter".

JASON STATHAM

The bastards who kidnapped that Chinese doctor?

ROBERT DE NIRO

"The Expendables 2".

JASON STATHAM

The Chinese bastard who kidnapped me?

ROBERT DE NIRO

"The One".

JASON STATHAM

The Chinese bastard who killed my colleague?

ROBERT DE NIRO

"War".

JASON STATHAM

The bastards who injected me with Chinese poison?

ROBERT DE NIRO

"Crank".

JASON STATHAM

The Chinese bastards who cut me open?

ROBERT DE NIRO

"Crank: High Voltage".

JASON STATHAM

Well if there isn't anyone Chinese in this movie, what the bloody fuck am I supposed to be doing?

INT. SUPER-SECRET CLANDESTINE MEETING ROOM

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE is briefing super-secret clandestine ex-SAS society THE FEATHERMEN who, despite the name, are not at all REALLY, REALLY GAY.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

I've heard rumours that a band of elite covert operatives is conspiring to kill some of our colleagues, and this makes me a sad panda.

THE FEATHERMEN

Young man, there's no need to feel down. Send one of your men to Oman to do some investigating. While he's there, he might find it fun to stay at the...

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

Don't finish that sentence. I'm already having a hard time taking you seriously.

EXT. 1980S OMAN

JASON and fellow elite covert operatives DOMINIC PURCELL and ADEN YOUNG are planning the first target's IMPENDING DOOM.

ADEN YOUNG

I suggest we go old-school and beat the guy to death.

JASON STATHAM

No, we need to make this look like an accident. Hit him with this mallet instead. Remember - covertly.

DOMINIC PURCELL

"Covertly" and "accident", you say? I don't know if we'll be able to remember all those complicated instructions.

DOMINIC and ADEN ring the target's DOORBELL, explain they're going to kill him, then ADEN beats him to DEATH with his bare hands.

ADEN YOUNG

More elite than David Braben, yo.

INT. SUPER-SECRET CLANDESTINE MEETING ROOM

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE is briefing THE FEATHERMEN again.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

One of our colleagues is dead - and it sure didn't look like an accident, which would definitely have calmed my suspicions.

THE FEATHERMEN

Young man, there's a place you can go. Specifically, down to the local hospital to run through the next action sequence.

CLIVE heads to the HOSPITAL, where JASON is stealing some drugs to kill their next target. They have a CAR CHASE and then a CONFRONTATION.

JASON STATHAM

(punches Clive in the balls and escapes)

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

The homoerotic subtext is getting even more glaring.

EXT. SAS TRAINING GROUND

JASON uses the stolen drugs to DOPE the second target's COFFEE, causing him to DIE on a training march in the middle of nowhere.

JASON STATHAM

Huh. That went surprisingly well for a change.

DOMINIC PURCELL

That reminds me, you know the contact who led us to this target? Yeah, I had to stab him with a broken paintbrush, while he was on the phone to Clive's colleagues.

JASON STATHAM

Oh, bloody 'ell.

EXT. 1980S ENGLAND

JASON, DOMINIC, ADEN and new rookie MICHAEL DORMAN are tailing the third target. Covertly.

DOMINIC PURCELL

Why are we bothering to make these look like accidents any more, when the last two both went tits up and blew our cover?

JASON STATHAM

Because, we're so elite, it just wouldn't be a challenge otherwise.

DOMINIC PURCELL

That sounds... believable? I don't know if that's the word I'm looking for.

ADEN uses a MAGIC REMOTE CONTROL DEVICE to take control of an oil tanker and CRASH it into the target's car.

DOMINIC PURCELL

Yeah, "believable" definitely wasn't what I meant.

One of CLIVE'S goons appears and chases them. In the ensuing struggle MICHAEL accidentally SHOOTS ADEN and kills him to death.

MICHAEL DORMAN

That seems totally worth introducing a new character for. I'll be off, then.

(leaves)

DOMINIC is captured by more of CLIVE'S goons. Then he escapes! Then he inexplicably sprints into the MIDDLE OF A BUSY ROAD and gets RUN THE FUCK OVER by a truck.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

For some reason, I had a hunch that all these people I'm encountering would represent the highest echelon of hitmen and operatives - a "killer elite", if you will. Turns out they're all complete shitting morons.

JASON escapes, flies back to Oman to meet RODNEY and get ROBERT released, then heads home after completing his FINAL JOB.

TRIPLE A

Don't rest just yet, the Sheikh has ONE EVEN FINAL-ER JOB for you. An ex-SAS agent has written a book about his life experience - a book that may one day be used as the achingly tenuous basis for a terrible cash-in action movie.

JASON STATHAM

I don't know, that actually sounds passably entertaining to me. But I can't resist ONE FINAL JOB. Again.

EXT. 1980S LONDON

JASON sends ROBERT to Paris to look after JASON'S girlfriend YVONNE STRAHOVSKI, while he completes his ONE DEFINITELY-FINAL-THIS-TIME JOB.

YVONNE STRAHOVSKI

Oh yeah, I completely forgot I was actually a part of this. It's probably because almost zero time was spent establishing my character.

JASON sneaks past CLIVE'S goons into a hotel and finds the final target, but his CONSCIENCE acts up again.

JASON STATHAM

Somehow this man reminds me of the boy in the car in Mexico, despite the complete lack of tangible connection. Curse you, sense of humanity!

JASON kneecaps the target and takes PHOTOS of him lying on the floor, but is then captured by CLIVE. A RANDOM GOVERNMENT AGENT appears from out of the blue.

RANDOM GOVERNMENT AGENT

Hi, I'm special agent John Exposition. It turns out the British government has been playing you two against each other, to expose the Feathermen and get in the Sheikh's good books, so we can drink some of his tasty oil reserves. Now I'm here to take you out of the picture.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

So why are you wasting time telling us this, instead of just killing us?

RANDOM GOVERNMENT AGENT

That's... that's a good point.

CLIVE kills the agent with his own HUBRIS, while JASON escapes.

EXT. 1980S OMAN

CLIVE visits RODNEY and shows him the PHOTOS of the final target looking all DEAD and stuff.

RODNEY AFIF

So he's dead, then? Yours is a moustache that is truly trustworthy. Take this briefcase full of money for your troubles.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

Actually, these pictures are fake, and now I've told you I have to murder you. It's not like I can hang around and wait for you to contract some form of terminal disease.

RODNEY AFIF

Well actually...

(is stabbed)

JASON and ROBERT arrive and chase CLIVE into the desert. JASON shoots out his tyres and ROBERT takes the briefcase from the back of CLIVE'S car.

ROBERT DE NIRO

Well, I think I've pulled my weight the bare minimum to warrant second billing... aaaaand that looks like my salary. You know, there's something about half-assing it for a bumper payday that just tastes so much sweeter than actual acting ever did.

ROBERT grabs a pile of CASH and leaves to PHONE IT IN in a third-rate rom-com.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

So after ninety minutes of barely-credible plotting, our big climax is an aborted car chase, and trading of raised voices?

JASON STATHAM

You can't complain, it's all based on a true story. This is basically a historical documentary.

CLIVE OWEN'S MOUSTACHE

Even the bit where, having done a bunch of crazy stunt set pieces and hit all the formulaic action movie beats, you conveniently set up a potential sequel by leaving the main antagonist alive, then you go get the girl and ride off into the sunset?

JASON STATHAM

ESPECIALLY that bit.

JASON flies to Paris to GET THE GIRL and rides off into the SUNSET, as the closing TITLE CARDS desperately try to convince the audience any of this nonsense might have been even slightly true.

END