EXT. TOBRUK SQUARE. DAY
A crowd of Tobruk CIVILIANS-French and Italians among the MOSTLY ARAB FACES. Their papers are being thoroughly checked by officers sitting at open desks. IN A LINE, WEARING HIS SHABBY SUIT; IS CARAVAGGIO. AN ARAB WOMAN in front of him is arguing over the identity of her ominously CAUCASIAN-LOOKING BABY: An INTERPRETER mediates. The OFFICER doesn't believe the woman. She's getting frantic at the possibility of losing her child.
Suddenly there's a disturbance as another WOMAN is dragged along the line by her hair. She's bloodied, and has been tortured, and it's hard to recognize her as the pretty AICHA. She is forced to consider some horrified members of the line, shakes her head, moans, falls to her feet. Caravaggio doesn't look, stares straight ahead. An officer watches him AS HE TURNS BRIEFLY AND HELPLESSLY OUT OF CONCERN FOR HER. THEIR EYES CATCH FOR AN INSTANT AND THE OFFICER SEES IT:
CARAVAGGIO SLOWLY WALKS away from the line. A soldier shouts to halt, the crowd ducks for cover.
Caravaggio puts up his arms in surrender.
INT. INTERROGATION ROOM. TOBRUK. NOVEMBER 13, 1942. DAY
Caravaggio is slumped at a table, HIS HANDS MANACLED TO ITS THICK WOODEN LEGS. There's A TELEPHONE at another table in the corner of the room attended by a CLERK with A STENOGRAPHER working next to him. The room has stone walls which appear damp, and no windows. SOLDIERS stand guard at the door. It's a horrible room. Caravaggio is trying to sleep, he's unshaven and pasty-looking. His interrogator, MULLER, seems incredibly tired and aggravated. He approaches the table carrying a collection of photographs which he lays down on the table in front of Caravaggio.
MULLER: David Caravaggio.
MULLER (of the photographs): This was taken in Cairo at British Headquarters--July '41.And so was this--August '41. And this--February '42.
CARAVAGGIO: It's possible. I was buying or selling something. I've been to Cairo many times.
MULLER: You are a Canadian spy working for the Allies. Code name Moose.
THE PHONE rings again, is answered. The Clerk calls to Muller, who gets up, irritably. Caravaggio addresses the room.
CARAVAGGIO: Could you get me a doctor? I'm sick, I'm leaking blood.
Nobody responds. Muller is irascible on the phone, checking his watch, negotiating time. The call finishes.
CLERK (in German): He's asking for a doctor.
MULLER (to Caravaggio): You want a doctor?
CARAVAGGIO: I've been asking for weeks, months, I don't know--
MULLER: We don't have a doctor, but we do have a nurse.
CARAVAGGIO (taken aback): A nurse? Well, sure, great. A nurse would be great. A nurse? Great.
Muller nods at the Clerk, who instantly gets up. Just then the telephone rings again. He hesitates.
MULLER (in German): Leave it and get the nurse!
The clerk exits
to Caravaggio): Look--give
me something. A name. A code. So we can all get out of this room.
(wiping his face)
I'm sick of this heat. It's too hot.
CARAVAGGIO: I slept with a girl. I've got a wife in Tripoli. A girl comes up and points at you, you only see trouble.
The NURSE comes in. She is Arab, unbearably young, pure. Her head is covered.
MULLER: I'll tell you what I'm going to do. This is your nurse, by the way. She's Moslem, so she'll understand all of this. What's the punishment for adultery? Let's leave it at that. You're married and you were seeing another woman, so that's--is it the hands that are cut off? Or is that for stealing? Does anyone know?
There's a silence. Muller turns to Caravaggio.
MULLER: Well, you must know. You were brought up in Libya, yes?
CARAVAGGIO: Don't cut me.
MULLER: Or was it Toronto?
Now the phone starts again. The Clerk picks it up, there's a terse exchange, he puts the receiver on the desk, waits for the moment to interrupt Muller.
MULLER: Ten fingers. How about this? You give me a name for every finger--doesn't matter who. I get something, you keep something. I'm trying to be reasonable.
CARAVAGGIO (ashen): Don't cut me. Come on.
(pauses, suddenly puzzled):
Are thumbs fingers?
No response. Muller opens his palms to Caravaggio.
MULLER: I get no help from these people.
Muller slams down the telephone receiver. An AIR RAID SIREN is going off somewhere, and now the faint sound of explosions is also discernible, but all muffled in this room along with the steady tap-tap of the STENOGRAPHER. At that moment, Muller suddenly becomes aware of what is happening. He turns on the Stenographer.
MULLER (in German): What are you doing?
STENOGRAPHER (awkward, in German): The Geneva Convention. I'm-
Muller peremptorily rips out the paper, throws it on the floor.
MULLER: The Geneva Convention! Ach!
CARAVAGGIO: Hey--Come on! You can't do that!
DURING THIS Muller's gone to the table, pulled out a drawer, and produced A CUTTHROAT RAZOR. He hands it to the nurse, makes a line across his own left thumb, and jerks his head toward Caravaggio. The nurse is extremely reluctant. Muller claps his hands, pushes her toward Caravaggio.
MULLER: Go! Hey! Go!
Caravaggio is in terror.
CARAVAGGIO: I'll give you names. I'll give you names. What names did you say? I've forgotten the names. Tell me the names and I'II agree.
The guards come away from the door and press down on Caravaggio's shoulders to prevent him from moving. The nurse, grim-faced, approaches, kneels at the table, takes the blade from Muller, takes gentle hold of Caravaggio's hand.
CARAVAGGIO (as she prepares to cut): Please--please--oh, please--oh, please--l promise. What name did you say? I knew them!
MULLER (jabbing at the nurse): Come on!
And then Caravaggio SCREAMS AND SCREAMS. The AIR RAID is continuing outside, the PHONE IS RINGING. Muller watches as Caravaggio is mutilated, his cries continuing, his whimpers horrible.