I could be wrong but I don't think this "Short Circuit" reboot is gonna work.


I could be wrong but I don't think this "Short Circuit" reboot is gonna work.

THE B SIDE: ELSA DORFMAN'S PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY

The Very Abridged Script

FADE IN:

INT. ALL-WHITE PHOTO STORAGE ROOM

We open in an all-white photo storage and lab space, which has copious amounts of drawers full of photos. The AUDIENCE senses they are about to become VERY, VERY FAMLIAR with this single room.

ERROL MORRIS

(off camera)

Hi everyone, I’m Errol Morris. My documentaries have covered subjects as far-ranging as brutal murderers, deluded loners, and Donald Rumsfeld. I’ve used my Interrotron camera to pierce deeply into the human condition. And so I bring you my latest effort: chatting away with an old friend of mine about Polaroids. Please welcome Elsa Dorfman, renowned portrait photographer.

ELSA DORFMAN

Thank you! I’ve always wanted to experience the Interrotron.

ERROL MORRIS

Too bad I'm not using it. So show us some pics!

ELSA DORFMAN

Why sure. I have lots and lots of pictures. Like this one!

(holds photo in front of face)

And here’s someone else.

(holds so that one eye peeks out from behind photo)

Can’t forget this person.

(holds so that tip of one earlobe juuust barely extends past photo)

And here’s my husband. He was quite the hairy fucker. I had to find myself a larger camera just to get all his body hair in one image.

ERROL MORRIS

Is that why you devoted yourself to the special giant Polaroid camera that takes up half a room? The 20x24, that’s large and cumbersome and only slightly less manoeuvrable than Dion Phaneuf of the Ottawa Senators, hey-ohhhhh?

ELSA DORFMAN

It is.

ERROL MORRIS

What about getting a camera with higher resolution and then expanding the image?

ELSA DORFMAN

(pause)

Another wonderful device I found was the remote shutter release.

ERROL MORRIS

That’s the handheld thing on a cord so you can be in the photo.

ELSA DORFMAN

Correct.

ERROL MORRIS

So you invented selfies.

ELSA DORFMAN

Shit.

ERROL MORRIS

That’s OK, I’m sure it was inevitable.

ELSA DORFMAN

Even so. Shit. Although, to be fair, I also photographed myself butt naked.

ERROL MORRIS

Thus inventing the Kardashian selfie.

ELSA DORFMAN

Dammit. On the topic of famous people however, I do have many photos of them. Let’s see.

(opens drawer)

(removes 700 photos)

Ah yes. Here we have a singer/songwriter most people have forgotten. Let’s hear some of his music!

CUE: FOLK SONG

ELSA DORFMAN

And here’s Allen Ginsberg, who some people will remember. We can also afford to listen to one of his songs.

CUE: GINSBERG SONG

ELSA DORFMAN

And here’s a photo of some random lanky folk singer with stringy hair and a harmonica who became super famous, and we can’t afford to licence any of his music, or even mention him by name it seems. It rhymes with "Blob Villain".

ERROL MORRIS

Sorry about that, I blew all my “Mr. Death” money on Lamborghinis and coke. Speaking of music, why don’t you tell us about what “The B Side” refers to in this context?

ELSA DORFMAN

Sure! When I take pics of randos, I’ll do a couple and let them pick one. The one they don’t pick is sort of like a “B-side” of an album, but I tend to like them better. Isn’t that odd?

ERROL MORRIS

Odd that they paid for a formal photo, and then chose the more formal photo, leaving you the quirky one that would be more interesting to strangers with no emotional stake in how it turned out?

ELSA DORFMAN

Yes, exactly that kind of odd. For example this B-side has a dude with no head. Why wouldn’t anyone choose that?

CUE: MUSIC BY SOME GUY WHO MAKES PHILIP GLASS TYPE MUSIC BUT ISN’T PHILIP GLASS BECAUSE GETTING PHILIP GLASS TAKES SERIOUS COIN YO

ERROL MORRIS

Let’s take a moment to get deep and talk about photos as truth and people’s souls and shit.

ELSA DORMAN

Sure. Well photos aren’t truth. Ten photos taken within twenty seconds will tell ten different stories. As documentation they are bullshit.

ERROL MORRIS

So their value is the insight into hearts and minds.

ELSA DORFMAN

Nah, that is also bullshit. I just want to record the surface of people.

ERROL MORRIS

But they give such big soulful looks with their wide trusting eyes...

ELSA DORFMAN

So do puppies. Is it time to look at Allen Ginsberg’s giant dong yet?

ERROL MORRIS

He had a giant dong?

ELSA DORFMAN

Well no, I mean, I have a giant picture of Allen Ginsberg’s dong. The dong itself is medium-sized.

ERROL MORRIS

As long as it’s worth building the whole movie up to it.

ELSA DORFMAN

Oh it is. I’ve got an enormous print, it takes up a whole huge wall. In fact I’m having it specially treated and preserved because I find the idea of some curator delicately handling Allen Ginsberg’s huge floppy cock hilarious. Let’s go have a look at it now.

ERROL MORRIS

Yeah, we should leave this slow-paced extended scene inside a giant white room before one of us becomes a Star Child.

They finally go to ANOTHER ROOM and on a giant table is indeed BIG OL’ NAKED ALLEN GINSBERG.

ERROL MORRIS

Holy shit, I’ve just been told we are in fact an R-rated movie. For having utterly non-sexual nude photos of you and Allen Ginsberg.

ELSA DORFMAN

This movie of you and me talking about Polaroids and shit for 80 minutes is rated R. But Superman gruesomely murdering people with heat vision is PG-13??

ERROL MORRIS

Apparently.

ELSA DORFMAN

Society is fucked up.

ERROL MORRIS

Agreed. But that's precisely why you'll be joining forces with Randall "Thin Blue Line" Adams, Dan "Gates of Heaven" Harberts, Ray "Mole Rat" Mendez, and Stephen Hawking, to fight for justice and right wrongs in the Errol Morris Cinematic Universe!! Talks with Bruce Willis are ongoing.

ELSA DORFMAN

Oh Errol, not you too...

ERROL MORRIS

I NEEDS MY LAMBORGHINIS AND COKE, WOMAN

END

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