True Crime (1999) - full transcript

Steve Everett, Oakland Tribune journalist with a passion for women and alcohol, is given the coverage of the upcoming execution of murderer Frank Beachum. His attractive colleague Michelle died in a car accident the night before. Bob Findley, Steve's boss and husband to Steve's current affair, wants him dead and gone as soon as possible. When Steve stumbles across the possibility of Frank Beachum being innocently on death row, Bob feels his time to have come. Now Steve only has a few hours left to prove the innocence of Frank and to be right with this theory, as he definitely will be history if he's not.

120 over 70.


All right, open wide.

Looks fine. Healthy as a horse.

Just one more thing, Luther.

You got to whiz in the cup, Frank.

Then we're done.

Fuck them.

We going to argue the
merits of journalism?

You trying to tell me
that's journalism?

Look, Michelle...

it's been a long weekend.

Everybody's shooting one another
and I've got to write about it.

I'm serious. I'm tired
of the crap, you know?

I should get my PhD. Then I could
write about stuff that matters.

You're 23 years old. You don't
know anything that matters.

Well, fuck you too, Ev.

All right, here's a shoulder.

- What did they do to you?
- Not "they." He.


He killed my sidebar on
the Frank Beechum murder.

That case stinks anyway,
but it's not the point.

- I read that sidebar.
- It was good. Admit it.

Best I've written in months.

That was the one where you
say that the media...

glorified Beechum's victim to

mask our patriarchal culture...

which created the violence
that destroyed her.

You're right. He should
have never killed that.

- Fucking-A.
- I would've tortured it.

Well, it might have enjoyed that.

I think it would've enjoyed
every second of that.

Another round?

Another margarita for the
lady, and I'll have my usual.

Not your "usual" usual?

No, my new usual.

Virgin Mary.

And heavy on the...


Tell me something.

If you're such hot
shit, why are you

stuck here in Bumfuck, California?

Looking for love.

You've come to all
the wrong places.

Not from where I sit.

It's not good. Not smart.

What's smart got to
do with anything?

I can't do this.

I got to go.

I got to go. You're
married and you're...

I can't do this.

I got to go.

Next time?

Yeah, next time.


We're out.

Just hold on. I can't hear you.

Morning, Frank.

Can I get you anything?

Some breakfast?

Well, if I can get, like...

a roll and some coffee.

I'll get that right away.

You're not wearing your
protective glasses.

You heard about it?


What a tragedy.

The Raiders are a
tragedy. She drunk?

I don't know. It was
Dead Man's Curve.

- Did she have anything big on?
- The interview with Beechum...

at San Quentin, then
the execution tonight.

It's worse for Michelle.

You think so, Bob?

If the warden will okay a
replacement for the interview...

I'll take Harvey out
of that meeting.

- Put Everett on it.
- Steve has the day off.

Not any more. He can
do the interview

and witness the execution.

And what's-his-name, the
warden at San Quentin...

Steve's dealt with him
before. I can get him in.

- You think Everett's an asshole.
- I don't think that.

You're wrong. He is an
asshole. Trust me, I know him.

But a lot of people who are good
at their jobs are assholes.

I know that, Alan, all
right? It's not about that.

Everything with Everett
is a witch-hunt,

like that Mike Vargas piece.

He's not a drunk now.

Two months ago he's a drunk,
now he's Mother Teresa.

This is not a Steve Everett
slash-and-burn job.

This is a sidebar.
It's an issue piece.

"An issue piece."
Well, dog my cats.

It's capital punishment, Alan.

We are putting a man
to death tonight.

We are killing a human being.

Stop the presses.

By the way, that Amy

the pregnant broad Frankie
shot in the throat...

was she a human being? Is
that part of the issue?

Yeah, that is part of the issue.

Let me tell you... Cake?


Issues are shit we use as an
excuse to run good stories.

"Judge Grabs Female
Attorney's Tits."

The sex discrimination "issue."

"Nine-year-old Shoots
Brother with Uzi."

The child violence "issue."

People want to read about
sex organs and blood.

You know what?

We make up issues
so they don't have

to feel too nasty
about it. Got it?

I should call Everett,
because that's his attitude.

A little sarcasm? How long
you been here? Three months?

I've worked with Everett
for three years.

And let me tell you
something, Bob.

The guy is good, as good as
anybody I've ever worked with.

You know why he was
run out of New York?

I heard some things.

He busted the mayor. The mayor
of fucking New York City.

He found a secret
memo on a bribe...

Between His Honour and an

ex-borough president
and ran with it.


The paper killed it because the
owner was in bed with the mayor.

What did Everett do?

He didn't whine...

and he didn't back down.

He just fucking walked.

That's Steve Everett.

- Fine.
- Good.

- How's the quitting smoking?
- Great.

When you send the flowers
to that dead girl...

Michelle's family...

would you include my name? Thanks.

- See you.
- All right.

The mayor of New York City, Bob.

The mayor, you gullible asshole.

Yeah, I could have stayed
in New York forever.

They were about to put me in
charge of an investigative team.

That would have put me
on the Pulitzer track.

I really liked it there. Broadway
shows, downtown jazz clubs...

dinners at Elaine's, veal
chops up the old wazoo.

Not veal chops like that, though.


Now you have to kiss
it and make it better.

So you were the king of New York.

Why are you hacking out metro
stories at the Oakland Tribune?

Well, that's a long story.

I got caught in the supply
room with a very young lady.

Turned out to be the
owner's daughter.

How the hell was I supposed
to know she was underage?

She looked 18 to me.

Anyway, I got blackballed
all over town.

You bad man. What
did your wife say?

We'd just had the kid, so
she took it kind of hard.

But Alan offered us
this gig out here.

Another town, another change.

Bad man.

First the owner's daughter,
now the editor's wife.

Do I detect a little...

hostility towards
authority figures?

Only ones I work for.

Is that what you'll say in the
next town with someone else?

"I got caught with the
editor's wife. You know."

I get caught with the
editor's wife...

there's not many more
towns that'll have me.

So playtime's over?

You've got to go to work.
I've got to get home...

see if the wife and kid
still recognise me.

You won't tell me how
awful we are, will you?

Bob, he's a decent sort.

Good newspaperman, solid editor.

So this all just stinks...


What we're doing?


you and I are just two people

swimming through the
passions of life.

You know?

Look, it's all right.

It's not like I love
you or anything.

That's good.

Because I don't love you too.

All right.

Yes, all right.

You won't believe this.


That was Bob.

What'd he want?

He was looking for you.

Who told him?

How should I know?

Morning, Frank.

Mr Plunkitt.

Anything I can get for you?

Anything you need?

No, not anything I can think of.

There's some matters I
gotta discuss with you.

Figured we'd do it first,
get it out of the way.

Your dinner tonight,
for one thing...

can be pretty much
anything you want.

You go ahead and tell Reedy
here when you decide.

Now, about your
personal effects...

My wife will take them.

And your remains?

That go for your remains too?

If she can't afford the funeral...

Our church raised some
money. It's all right.

So your wife will be
claiming your remains?

Yes, sir, that's right.

I want to give you some idea of
what's going to happen tonight.

We'll have to ask your
visitors to leave at 7 p.m.

You'll be given your dinner
and a fresh set of clothes.

We'll come for you about a
half-hour before the procedure.

You'll be taken into
the procedure room.

They'll hook an EKG up to you
and the intravenous lines.

But nothing's going to
happen early or anything.

Right up until 12:01, we'll
be monitoring the phones.

We got lines to the attorney
general and the governor.

And those we check to make
sure they're working.

You have any questions?


Just one more thing, and then
I'll leave you in peace.

- It's about the sedative.
- I don't want one.

Sedative's completely
optional, Frank.

It can make things a lot easier.

I don't want it.

I appreciate it, Mr Plunkitt...

but I want to be clear in my mind.

When I see my wife, I want
to be clear for that.

Fair enough.

You change your mind,
let the officer know.

I just had to give
you my sales talk.

Badges will be at the gate.
Got the witness list.

What else?

Roadblocks are up. Demonstrators
are light so far.

- Visitors squared away?
- Wife and kid.

Your girl from the Trib, Michelle
Ziegler, will be here at 4.

Mea culpa.

- She was pretty persuasive.
- Let her persuade me next time.

Arnie, what do you
think of Beechum?

Sometimes I think about the
girl he shot dead over $96.

Mostly I think about doing my job.

Warden. Sir.

I repent.

Jesus, Atkins.

Give me some of that pussy, baby.

Give me some pussy on toast. I
need some of that pussy on toast.

Go ahead, baby, shake that thing.

Excuse me. Can I have
some pussy on toast?

I just need some pussy on toast.
Give me some pussy on toast.

- Is that you, newspaperman?
- Back off.

You got money. Give
me some on toast.

Come on, I need it.

Promise me you will not
spend this on food.

Five dollars?

You can give me more than that.

Give me five, give me 10.
Come on, give me 20, Steve.

Give me $100, you
got so much money.

You got money on toast,
baby. I know you do.

- Hey, sister.
- Get away from me.

- I know you got some sweet pussy.
- Get away from me.

You nasty motherfucker.
Shut your nasty ass up.

I want something on the toast.
Nothing wrong with that.

Put some on the toast for
me. I know she likes me.

I know I'm going to give
her my phone number.

Hello, everyone.

You got my message?


Apparently, you and I
have a little problem.

Do we?

Yes, we do.

Look, Bob...

Michelle Ziegler was killed
in a car wreck last night.



That couldn't be. I was
with her last night.

Oh, no.

She was only 23 or something.

Dead Man's Curve.

My God.

The poor kid.

Just out of school
and 23 or something.

I should have driven her home.

She had an interview set up with
Frank Beechum this afternoon.

The poor...


Yeah, I heard they were
going to juice him today.

In fact, she said she had
a seat for the show.

Four o'clock in the
deathwatch cell.

Alan wants you to cover for her.

Is he the one who killed
that pregnant girl?

College student, Amy Wilson.
Working the summer in Richmond.

Place called Pocum's Grocery.
Owed Beechum 96 bucks.

Repairs he did on her car or
something. Shot her dead.

Anything else I should know?

Tough, black mechanic at the
Amoco station in Clayton.

But I warn you, do not
pull a Dick Tracy on this.

I don't want a big investigation.

You can depend on
that. Don't worry.

Says here, Beechum's one
of those born-again.

Yeah, aren't they
all on death row?

Biggest birthrate in the country.


He came from Michigan. Broken
home, alcoholic mother.

He's been in and out of jails,
violent assaults, drugs.

He did two years for beating a cop
who tried to give him a ticket.

Sounds like a reasonable fella.

Then another three for
breaking into a store.

Then he got out, met his
wife. Nice girl, born-again.

Led him to Jesus.

They had a daughter, bought
a house in Richmond.

Yeah, now he's Mr Nice Guy.

I guess not. Six years ago,
he walks into Pocum's...

Amy Wilson's on the register.

Let me guess.

He asks Amy for his $96 and
she says she doesn't have it.

And old Frank, he gets
his wicked temper up.

I don't suppose he's expressed
any heartfelt remorse?

Nope. Get this.

He still says that he just went to

the store for some
A-1 Steak Sauce.

Steak sauce?

Well, that's a nice touch.

Nussbaum had two strong witnesses.

Black or white?

Let's see. Both white.

A woman in the parking
lot saw him run away...

and this poor guy,
an accountant...

goes in to use the phone
because his car overheated.

Beechum is there, gun in
hand, blood all over him.

All I'm looking for is the
human-interest angle.

Final days, what it's like.

- Got it?
- Yeah, I got it.

Anything else you need from me?


Good. Okey-dokey.

Get right on it.

Something else on
your mind, Steve?

The witness...

the one who found Beechum
with the body...

must have heard the shots.

The shots.

You know, he comes in...

his car's overheated,
he's got the hood up.

Must be working on it.
Meanwhile, a robbery's going on.

He had to have heard shots.

So he heard the shots.

But this is a white
accountant in Richmond.

You're telling me
he's going to walk

into a store when he heard shots?

You know what? I don't know
if he heard the shots.

Maybe he did. I don't care.

What I'd like you
to do is interview

Beechum about his feelings today.

Turn it into a human-interest
sidebar. Can you do that?

Yeah, I'll get right on it.

No problem.



Close one.

I don't know what you
did, but he's after you.

We're about two seconds away from
a full Bob Findley explosion.

What are you, crazy?

You're lighting up after
Bob's "no smoking" speech?

I missed that.

Yeah. That was smart too.

Try to be a good boy, okay?

Beechum case.

Amy Wilson, married, 20 years
old, shot in the chest...

with a .38 as she stood behind
the counter at Pocum's Grocery.

Six months pregnant at the time.
Both she and the baby died.

Two witnesses.

Nancy Larson, housewife...

mother of three. Drives
into Pocum's parking lot.

Larson couldn't see whether
he had a gun or not.

No weapon was found.

Later she picked Beechum
out of a police line-up...

the same line-up where
he was picked out...

by Dale Porterhouse,
CPA. He was in the area.

His car overheated, so
he drove into Pocum's.

Porterhouse picks Beechum from
the line-up that same day.

Records show Amy Wilson
owed Beechum $96...

for carburettor work.

Note for future essay:

Why so few female car mechanics?

Want coffee, Ev?

It's back in fashion as a
late-morning pick-me-up.

Make it a big one.

Women can fetch coffee now...

because job opportunities
give us new confidence.

Do you think being the trends
editor's getting to you?

I don't know. Was I an
insane person before?

You're a great person.

You take it black?

I do.


Steve, thank God. Where are you?

I'm at the paper.
They roped me in.

Did they call you at the
gym? They tried here.

I stopped by to pick something
up and they grabbed me.

Did you have a good workout?

Yeah, decent.

Good. Anyway, you promised Kate
you'd take her to the zoo.

The zoo.

God, I forgot.

Steve, she really
is expecting you.

I'm sorry about that.
I really just forgot.

You worked all weekend. She
didn't see you at all.

You know how she loves her daddy.

I know it's work...

but I feel it would be a bad
idea to let her down again.

Barbara, there's been an accident.

Remember Michelle Ziegler?
You met at Christmas?

She piled up her car
on Dead Man's Curve.

That's terrible. There's been
so many accidents there.

They ought to do something.

What was that?

They ought do
something about that.

Is she hurt?

"Not if I heard
anything like that."

Yeah, dead.

That's awful. You're
filling in for her?

They've got a ticket for
the execution tonight.

Don't tell me they couldn't get

someone else. You
worked all weekend.


What? Where are you?

Barbara, look, I don't have
to be at San Quentin till 4.

Why don't I pick
up Katie, take her

to the zoo and bring
her back at 3?

Coffee time.

What about her nap? She
has her nap after lunch.

Her nap?

Isn't today your day off?

She gets cranky without her nap.

Well, I'll bring her
a double espresso.

- It's just a joke.
- I'm busting a gut.

I'll be there in a half-hour,
12:30 at the latest.

Why'd you go in there
on your day off?

Are you still trying to make
up for that Mike Vargas thing?

I'll be there at 12:30, all right?

More and more workers
insist on the

right not to breathe
second-hand smoke.

And more and more
scumbags don't care.

Well, Bridget, you're
an adorable person.

Sexual harassment.

What are the guidelines?

Who can say?

I hate my job, Ev.

But I love watching you do it.

Don't look now.

Gosh, Mr Reporter, is that what
real newspapermen get to read?

Well, Dale Porterhouse:

"No, I couldn't have
heard the shots.

The windows were
rolled up and I had

the radio and air conditioner on.

That's probably why
the car overheated."

Close quote.

That's another wild
hunch down the drain.

My condolences.

No great loss.

Look, anybody calls...

I'm at the zoo.

Me too.

Good morning, Frank.

I thought maybe...

if there's anything
I can do for you...

anything you'd like
to talk about...

I want you to know I'm
here, I'm available.

I understand you read the Bible.

That's right, isn't it, Frank?

But, you know...

just reading the Bible
isn't enough, is it?


Man can't go to his Maker with the
sins of his soul unrepented of.

With the hurt he's caused
folks just, you know...

unrepented of.

A lot of folks would
feel better to hear...

you were remorseful for
the pain you caused them.

You could do a lot of
good with those words.

I don't have anything to tell you.

Reverend Shillerman...

I want you to leave. I have
my own pastor coming later.

I don't need to tell you...

there will come a time, and I'm
afraid it's not far off...


When you'll wish you'd
made a different decision.

But it will be too late.

What can I get you?

Get this damn fool out of my face.

Call himself a man of God.

Reverend Shillerman.

Reverend Shit-For-Brains.

Now, Frank...

I wouldn't want to be
strapped to that table...

with the wrongs I've
committed unrepented of.

When they stick that
needle in your arm...

feel your blood run to ice.

Reverend, that's enough.

Get him out of here.

I feel sorry for you, Frank.

I'm sorry too. Believe me.

I mean it. We don't
want no trouble.

All right. I just
felt it's my job.

It might be upsetting...

Everyone wants in on the
action, right, Frank?

Twelve hours from now, convicted
killer Frank Beechum...

will be executed by
lethal injection.

He was convicted six years ago...

of the brutal slaying
of 20-year-old

Amy Wilson and her unborn child...

at Pocum's Grocery in the
Richmond section of the county.

Wilson, who was six
months pregnant...

was working when
Beechum shot her...

during an argument over $96 she
owed him and was unable to pay.

Now the weather:

Morning low clouds with
some afternoon clearing.

Help you?

Yeah, I'm a reporter from
the Oakland Tribune.

Isn't this where Amy
Wilson was killed?

It sure is.

She was right behind
this same counter.

Almost six years ago exactly.

Mr Pocum says...

the needle's too good for him.

For Beechum.

They ought to bring back the
chair. That's what I say.

Really let him have a
jolt of something.

What's back there?


Mr Pocum was always nice...

about letting folks come
in and do their business.

I'll come back some
other time maybe

and do some really
serious shopping.

Am I going to be in the newspaper?

Was something here before?

That's where the potato
chips used to be.

But Mr Pocum moved
the rack over here...

so it'd be what you call...

an impulse kind of purchase.

This in that story you're writing?

That's a good point.

I'm writing a human-interest
sidebar. Do you know what that is?

No, I don't think I do.

I don't think I do either.

Sorry, I got hung up.


Aren't we going to the zoo today?

Well, what's holding us up?
Don't you want to get dressed?

- Let's change your clothes.
- What animal do you want to see?

Daddy, I want to go
see the hippopotamus.

Come on, let's change your pants.

I tell you, looking
into those eyes...

I don't think...

It was like looking into the eyes
of a goat. Something like that.

They were that cold.

I can't honestly say that
I've ever wished anyone dead.

But I think I'll feel a lot safer
when Frank Beechum's gone.

That's Dale Porterhouse,
an accountant

with the firm of
Stokes and Whitney.

Porterhouse was the
state's key witness

in the Wilson case
six years ago...

a case that will culminate at
one minute past midnight...

with the execution by lethal
injection of Frank Beechum.

Information. What city, please?

Oakland, for a Stokes and
Whitney. It's an accounting firm.

The number you requested is...

Come on, let's go. Daddy's here.

Steve, what is it?

Just a hunch I've
got. Bear with me.

Tonight, finally,
is the execution.

It's been a long six years. Do you

feel justice is
finally being done?

Is Dale Porterhouse there, please?

- Mr Porterhouse is at lunch.
- Get off the phone, Daddy.

Right now.

This is Steve Everett. I'm a
reporter with the Oakland Tribune.

Could you have him call me?
It's about the Beechum case.

Nothing will end that rage except
the death of the monster...

who killed my daughter and
my unborn grandchild.

I'll give you my beeper number.

You're not taking that beeper.

Just a second, it's just
a hunch. No big deal.

Yeah, it's 5-5-5...


- I'll make sure he gets it.
- Thanks.

Okay, sweetheart,
what do you think?

Are you ready for the big hippo?

You want to go in
the den with Dad?

I'll show you something
Dad's got to take with him.

Not the beeper. Right?
Not the beeper.

Let's pick up my beeper. This
goes "beep, beep, beep."

Yeah, it goes "beep, beep, beep."

Come on, get your jacket on.

And now we're just hours away from
the actual time of execution.

Daddy, I want to go
see the hippopotamus.

After a break, we'll be
talking to someone...

who thinks capital punishment
is never the solution.

I love you.

Bye, Katie.

Have a good time. I love you.

I love you too, Mama.


The car seat.

Mother, I'm too big
for a car seat.

We'll put her in back. How's that?

Put her in the back
seat. Seat belt.

Don't forget the seat belt.

The seat belt, Steven.

It's fine. It's fine.

I should've never
stopped by that store.

Oh, God.

Dale Porterhouse, please. This
is Steve Everett of the Tribune.

Be with you in just
a second, darling.

This is Dale Porterhouse.
What can I do for you?

I'll be ready in a second,
darling. We'll go in a second.

Mr Porterhouse, this is Steve
Everett of the Tribune.

I'm covering the Beechum
execution tonight.

I thought you were one of the
chief witnesses in that.

Just a second. Just a
second, sweetheart.

I was wondering if I could
have 10 minutes with you.

I'd be glad to. I
can't talk right now.

I could meet you later.

Yeah, where?

How about we meet at the Bread
Company restaurant? Know it?

Yeah, I know it exactly.

On Ninth Street, isn't it?

How about we meet in a half-hour?

Half-hour it'll be.

Thanks. Bye.

Okay, baby.

Come here. Come on.

But I'm too big to
sit in a stroller.

That's nonsense. We're going to
play this game called Speed Zoo.

Speed Zoo?


- Giraffes.
- We go fast.


Speed Zoo.

Camel lips.

We go fast.

We go fast.

Where's the hippopotamus?

Elephants. Look at the elephants.

Where's the hippopotamus?

Speed Zoo.

I want to see the hippopotamus.

We go fast.

I want a hippopotamus.

I'm sorry. I wouldn't have
this happen for the world.

I want my mummy.

I know, sweetie.

Daddy's sorry.

Oh, my God. What happened to you?

She's a real trooper,
I've got to tell you.

What the hell's wrong with you?

How you holding up?

Like I said, there's
always a chance.

But with all the feeling
about the girl...

You know how the
governor's tough on crime.

So Mr Berris says that maybe...

if you just tell him about
how remorseful you feel...

You know what I'm saying?

- I didn't do it.
- I understand.

I'm just telling you that's what
we're facing here, all right?

I can't say I'm sorry
for what I never did.

I'll call you as soon as
the appeal comes down.

Hi, Daddy.

I brought you a picture,
but it's not done...

so I have to finish it, okay?

Hold on. They're
going to let me in.

Don't be sad now. We're
not going to be afraid.

Give Daddy a big hug, please?

Come on, don't be sad. Don't be
afraid. We're not gonna be afraid.

I'm gonna finish my
picture now, Daddy, okay?

You do Daddy a favour, okay? Now,
walk over here with me, okay?

I want you to sit
right here while I

have a little talk
with Mummy, okay?

Give me a kiss.

Come on.

Come on, now.

You know I'm just going home
to dreamland, that's all.

It's green pastures, Daddy. See?

Here's the blue sky. I
made it at the motel.

Gonna be holding two places
at the table for us.

We're not gonna cry.

I'm sorry. Okay.

We know I'm going to a better
place beyond this place, right?

The thing I worry about
most in all this...

No, she loves you.

She loves you.

I don't want her to ever
think her daddy did...

She won't think that.

She knows you.

I can't find green,
Mama. Do you have it?

All the crayons are
in the box, honey.

Well, I can't find it.

Don't you ever let her think it.

You do that for me, okay?

I swear.

It's lost.

I can't find it anywhere.

Can you use another colour, honey?

I have to have green.

It's green pastures.

Look for it. It's got
to be here somewhere.

Daddy won't mind if you
use another colour.

Okay, baby.

Calm down.

Calm down, honey.

Mrs Beechum?

What parking area did you use?

Yeah, just a moment.

It's your lawyer again.


We lost it.

I'm sorry.

Mr Berris will be at the
governor's late this afternoon ok.

We got to be honest
about what's going on.

Know what I'm saying?


I'm really sorry, Frank.

We tried, but you know,
it just didn't work.


I don't know what else
to say. I'm so sorry.


God bless you, Frank.

- So is there anything?
- No, nothing yet.

You know how these legal
things are. They take forever.

Control, we've located
the material.

Copy that.

Good news.

They found the crayon.
It'll be here soon.

You hear that, sweetie?

Now you can show Daddy
some real pastures.

Green pastures.

That's right. Baby's
green pastures.

Come here.

Your green is coming.

Told you they would find it.

I believe there's such a thing in
this world as good citizenship.

A man sees an injustice, let alone
a cold-blooded murder, he has...

Let me get this straight.
You didn't see the murder.

Of course not. I never said I did.

Well, what did you see?

Mr Everett, I've been
through this so many times.

I can't tell you how many...

I have trouble getting
it into my head.

It's simple.

I went into Pocum's
to use the phone.

My car had overheated.

When the door slammed
behind me, he

jumped up from behind the counter.

He was covered with
blood and had a gun.

I guess it was when he
was bending over Amy...

I mean, Mrs Wilson, stealing
her ring and her necklace.

He got one good look at me, then
ran out the service entrance.

My concern is for the girl,
so I immediately dial 911.

I figured...

why should I run after a
killer who's got a gun...

when I can let the
police do their job?

And they sure did it.

Yeah, they sure did.

We live in a country where
there's a rule of law.

I mean, an ordinary
citizen who does...

Aren't you going to take notes
or use a tape recorder?

Usually when I talk
to reporters...

They want to keep a
record of what I say.

I've got a photographic memory.

Is that some kind of joke?

No, I have a notebook right here.

Just having an off day.
You'll have to excuse me.

Slow day.

Yeah, well...

- A man...
- Mr Porterhouse...

let me cut to the chase.

Are you absolutely sure
about your testimony?

Absolutely. Why wouldn't I be?

You saw Frank Beechum's
face and the gun?

If I had doubts
about my testimony,

I would've told the police.

That must have been scary, having
him point that gun right at you.

No. Thank God, no.
It wasn't like that.

Was it above his head?

No, he had the gun down by his
side in a very normal way.

How could you have seen
over the potato chips?


What potato chips?

I had a perfectly clear view.

Look, right here. Here's where
you come in the main entrance.

You look across and see Beechum
going out the service entrance.

Here in the centre is a
rack of potato chips.

I don't know how you could
have seen a gun there...

unless he was waving
it over his head.

Why would I say I saw
a gun if I didn't?

I don't know.

Maybe you like
telling the story...

Telling the police or reporters

something they
didn't already have.

Maybe you like telling the girls
around the office coffee machine.

This is absolutely absurd.

You actually think that I would
jeopardise a man's life...

in order to impress the
girls around my office?

I don't know, Mr Porterhouse.
We only just met.

That's right, Mr Everett.
We only just met.

But I did some checking on you
before I returned your call.

You led that crusade
to get the rapist

released last year, didn't you?

That lying what's-his-name?

You wouldn't be referring
to the Mike Vargas case?

Had all your facts straight
on that one too, didn't you?

Then they threatened him with the
DNA test. The guy confesses.

I'm surprised they didn't
fire you on the spot.

So am I.

Look, I'm sorry.

I just thought...

I don't know what I thought.

Can I tell you about our specials?

All right, lunch is here
and the drinks are cold.

Who gets the roast beef?

Over here, Zach.

Here you go.

Seems like there's more fat and
less meat every time I get this.

Ain't that the way you order it?
Hold the meat, leave the fat?

Arnold's all right. The
more of him, the better.

What do you say we do some
work while we feed our faces?

You all know that at 1800 hours...

The whole staff meets here
for a final briefing.

Excuse me, Warden.

The reverend here will hold a
prayer meeting after the briefing.

Which is optional for
anyone who wants to stay.

Also be advised...

there's a change in the
1600 interview thing.

The girl had some
kind of accident.

They've replaced her with Everett.


I realise his butt ain't quite up

to the standard of Michelle's...

but that's who's coming anyway.

Everyone clear on that?

Well, speak of the devil.

Alan tells me I'm
paying you too much.

You can rest assured
I'm frittering

it away on women and booze.

You're a real dyed-in-the-wool
son of a bitch.

Anybody ever tell you that?

Just close friends and family.

- I'll come back later.
- No, I was just leaving.

Still sober as a judge, right?

Guess you haven't
been partying with

the Alameda County judges lately.

Yeah, sober as an ex-drunk, sir.

Good to see you, Steve.

Stop fucking Bob's wife.
He doesn't like it.

What'd he do, put it
in the newspaper?

If he comes to me and wants your
ass, I have to give it to him.

You'll just be a hole
with no ass around it.

You know what, Ev? You're a
fucking womaniser, that's what.

You'll fuck up your
career and marriage.

If you can't keep your prick in
your pants, I can't protect you.

How was she?

None of your damn
business. Not bad.

Lucky. I always liked
and respected her.

Did I ever tell you about
the D.A. I was banging?

No, and if you do, I'll rip your
throat out with my bare hands.

I'll save it for another
day. Edifying story.

- I've got this problem.
- The nickel finally drops.

You do have a problem.

I told you Bob's been gunning for
you since the day he got here.

In his quiet, earnest,
reasonable way.

He's glad you banged his wife. Now
he has a mandate to destroy you.

I live to make him happy.
That's not the problem.

Fuck my wife. I'd just punch you.

- I did.
- Was she good?

A wildcat. But that's
not the problem.

What is it? Tell Papa.

Come to Papa, you soulless
sack of shit. What is it?

It's Frank Beechum.

I think he may be innocent.

After the briefing, Arnold
will check the phones...

make sure the lines are working.

Don't want the governor
to get a busy signal.

Don't worry. I got call
waiting put on that line.

Christ, Atkins.

Reuben, make sure the
clocks are synchronised.

And the one in the press room too.

You've got the strap-down team.

I myself had a personal

with the prisoner
myself this morning.

And going by my experience with
the men, he won't be any trouble.

In my opinion.

All right.

What have you got on Beechum?

- Listen to me...
- I don't have to listen.

I'm looking at you.
I'm looking and...

I can see a reporter who's about
to tell me he has a hunch.

I've been checking some things.

You know my opinion of
reporters with hunches?

This witness said he saw a
gun. I don't think he did.

I can't fart loud enough
to express my opinion.

Even Michelle thought
there were discrepancies.

After a police investigation, a
trial, six years of appeals?

And you found discrepancies? How

long did it take
you, half an hour?

You know the system.

His first attorney was probably
some 12-year-old legal-aid guy.

He couldn't object
enough for the court

to make an intelligent decision.

- If they could make one.
- Come on.

I got your appeal.

They're going to kill
the guy tonight.

All right. Man, I must be on acid.

So you're telling me you want to

turn a routine execution piece...

into a fight-for-justice story...

and give me an excuse
to stand up for you...

when Bob asks me to
transfer you to the toilet.

Alan, I need this.

You won't get your wife and
kid back. She'll find out.

I'll fix that.

I can't tell you what will happen
if this is another Vargas piece.

So you come up with
something, fine.

I'll run it. But
it better be good.

The Vargas thing, I
was drinking. You

lose your nose. My nose is back.

Well, we'll both
find out, won't we?

Just one thing.

If I come up with something, we

can't wait till
tomorrow to run it.

My God. I know what
you're thinking.

It's like dogs that hear a
sound that humans can't.

I can actually hear your little
brain ticking away. I really can.

If you go to Lowenstein thinking
he'll call the governor...

The governor will listen to him.

It better be good. Or he not
only won't call the governor...

he'll eat your heart and
throw you to the dogs.

You won't have to bone his wife,
pal. He'll fire you for free.


You don't have to thank me.

I don't know whose ass you're

trying to save,
Beechum's or yours.

But if your nose for a story is
gone, my friend, you are gone too.

Because I won't run this paper...

to salvage what's left of
your smarmy existence.

So you stand there
and you look me in

the eye and you tell
me, man-to-man:

Was she pretty good?

- Seriously.
- Fuck you.

Lucky bastard.

Go get them, tiger.

I don't know what to say to you.

Been trying to figure out...

what it was I wanted to say
to you, and I don't...

I'm sorry, Bob.

I really am sorry.

I don't think you are.

I don't think you're
capable of feeling sorry.

You're not capable of feeling
anything for other people.

Maybe you're right.

Maybe you're right, Bob.

How'd you find out?

She told me.

She told you?

She saved your cigarette butts in

an ashtray by the side of the bed.

Her way of letting me know.

I guess that's all I was, a way
of getting your attention.

If it helps any, I feel awful.

It doesn't help.

That is so beautiful, sweetheart.

I'll keep it with me
always. I promise you.

Can we come back tomorrow?

Can we stay at the motel again?


Tomorrow you and
Mama get to go home.

I don't want to go home.
I want to stay with you.

Come on, sweetie.

You're a big girl now.

You know what's going
on here, don't you?

Now, you know, after today...

you won't see Daddy no more.

But I will be there in spirit.

I promise.

You can talk to me whenever
you want, all right?

Remember what we talked
about, the little baby Jesus?

Remember that?

Well, I will be up there with
Him. And I will be watching you.

And I'll wait for you.

And if you want to talk to me
anytime, I will be there...


I'll miss you so bad, honey.

I wrote you a letter.

And your mama will have it...

when you need it later on, okay?

You go on now.

Gail, you want to
take these, honey?

Take these, okay?

Come on. It's time.

I love you.

I'll always love you, Gail. Okay?

Why can't you just come home?

Why can't you just kill all
these people and come home?

Don't say that, Gail. Don't
ever say that, okay?

Don't ever say that.

I love you, baby.

I'll always love you.

Goodbye, Daddy.


Oh, God.

It's too much.

She loves you. I know, honey.

Remind me not to start
a life of crime.

They lie, you know?

- Who's that?
- Prisoners.

That's what they do.

Every word they say is a lie.

Well, everyone lies, pal.

I'm just here to write it down.

You've got 15 minutes,
Mr Everett...

by order of Warden Plunkitt.

Keep to 15 minutes.

Mr Everett, Frank Beechum.

All right, have a seat.

I got them.

So how's that girl?

The other, Michelle?

I heard she was in
some kind of accident?

Yeah, she was.

She was in a car wreck.

She didn't make it.

Oh, man.

I'm sorry to hear that.


I guess you want to hear...

about how it feels to be in here.

Yeah, it's a human-interest piece.

I feel isolated.

I feel fear.

Fear of pain.

Fear of prison.

Fear of being separated
from my loved ones.

All those fears
rolled up into one.

Never having a chance to see my
daughter draw pictures like this.

She says it's Green Pastures.

I want to tell everyone that...

I believe in Jesus Christ,
our Lord and Saviour.

I believe I'm going
to a better place.

And there's a better place,
better justice there.

I came into my faith...

late in life.

Did a lot of bad things when
I was younger. You know?


I believe the crookeds
will be made straight.

That's what the Bible
says. I believe that.

So that's how I feel about it.

Is that all right, Mr Everett?

You got nine more minutes.

I mean, is there any
more that you want?

Mr Beechum, you don't know me.

I'm just a guy out there
with a screw loose.

Frankly, I don't give a rat's
ass about Jesus Christ...

and I don't care about justice
in this world or the next.

I don't even care what's
right or wrong. Never have.

But you know what this is?

What is this, some kind of joke?

No, it's no joke. That's my nose.

To tell you the pitiful truth,
that's all I have in life.

When it tells me
something stinks...

I have faith in it, like
you have faith in Jesus.

When my nose is working well, I

know there's truth
there somewhere.

But if it isn't working...

you may as well drive me
off a cliff. I'm nothing.


I'm not 100% sure...

my nose has been
working that great.

So I've got to ask you...

did you kill that woman or not?


What happened at that store
that day Amy Wilson was shot?

I went into the store to
buy a bottle of A-1 Sauce.

You paid at the counter...

No, I never got it.

I told everybody this. Why
are you asking me this?

Tell it again. To me.

I went into the store...

to buy a bottle of A-1 Sauce.

I didn't know where it was.
Amy was behind the counter.

Hey, Amy. Where you
keep the steak sauce?

It's in the back. See where
the ketchup and relish is?

I've been meaning to talk to you.

I don't have it.

I mean I could give you 30
now, but I don't have it all.

When can you give me the whole 96?

When I get paid, July 15th.

You're not gonna always
do this, are you?

No, I swear. It's just, the end of

school year. We have
extra expenses.

All right, then.

July 15th?

July 15th.

Mind if I use the bathroom?

You know where it is, right?

So you weren't mad
about the money?

I just wanted her to know I
didn't do business that way.

She was cool. I liked her.

Were you carrying a gun?


So then what?

I asked her, could I
use her restroom.

I went in to use the restroom,
and the next thing I know...

there was a gunshot.

That's all you got?

It's the Fourth of July
and we're not that busy.

- Give me the chain.
- Not that.

Give me the fucking chain.

Oh, God. Amy.

Oh, Jesus.

Oh, God.

Sweet Jesus.

Can you breathe, Amy?

Somebody help us.

Anybody here?


- "Please, not that."
- That's what I heard.

Why'd you run?

It was stupid. But
I've been running

from something most of my life.

There I was, covered in blood
next to a dead girl...

a white man staring at me like
I was... I just panicked.

- Who shot her?
- I don't know.

Did Porterhouse see the gun?

- You got five minutes.
- Wasn't no gun.

Did he see the shooter?

How would I know?

Of course he didn't.

By the time he pulled in the
lot, the shooter had left.

That's why he didn't
hear the shots.

I don't know when
anything happened.

That's because you were on the
floor trying to save Amy's life.

What was this, a random shooting?
Or was someone else there?

I don't know. I
didn't see anything.

Give me something.

What do you want? What
do you people want?

That's it.

You believe us, don't
you? Do you believe us?

- Bonnie, don't.
- Do you believe us?

Yes. I believe you.

For Christ sake.

Where's your heart? Don't
these people have enough?

Then where were you?

Dear God. Where were
you all this time?

It wasn't my story. There
was an accident...

Where were you?



You know, people come
in here, the press.

Prisoners tell them things. All
kind of heart-wrenching things.

And the next day in the paper, we
come off sounding like hard guys.

It can get pretty
frustrating, is all.

Yeah, of course.

We have to do what the
state tells us to do.

Makes it tough on us...

if we show up in the paper
as bloody murderers.

Yeah, I understand. Completely.

Knew you would.

These things go through all
kind of trials and appeals...

before they get to us.

No use trying to figure out
who's naughty or nice...

and then come sliding down
the chimney like a hero.

Not on execution day.

You're not Santa Claus.

No such thing as Santa Claus.


You're not really sure, are you?

You drive safe now.

- Cecilia, I want to talk.
- Not a good time.

Not now. Call my office.

- This is important.
- Please, just back up.

Back off, will you?

What are you, a court attorney?

Hit a reporter. See how
long you keep your job.

- Why don't you get in the car?
- Yeah, why don't you?

New York asshole.

What is it?

Frank Beechum. Who else was there?

Are you back on the bottle?

There was Frank Beechum,
Nancy Larson, Porterhouse...

- Who else?
- What's the difference?

That's the one who shot Amy.

I don't know what
kind of cockamamie

conspiracy theory
you're working on...

but we've got a solid case. I

don't send innocent men to death.

I know that. I do.

But you made a mistake. He
was just using the bathroom.

He went in for steak sauce.

You've always been a
gullible son of a bitch.

Read the transcripts. A witness
saw Beechum with a gun.

He couldn't have. Not
through the potato chips.

Is that what he said?

I saw it in his
eyes. I could tell.

- You haven't got jack shit.
- How much jack shit do I need?

There was somebody, wasn't there?

A kid got a Coke from the machine.
He didn't even look inside.

He's the one who killed Amy.

We interviewed him. We issued
a description of his car.

His story checked out...

The plain fact is you
had Beechum in custody.

You didn't have the right person.

You thought you had the right guy.

He was nothing.

He was in a line-up
with Beechum. Both

witnesses still fingered Beechum.

He was gone before
the witnesses even

got there. Just give me his name.

How can I remember
after six years?

- You've got files.
- He was nothing to the case.

Call in the morning.
I'll try to help.

You wait till morning, you
better sleep well tonight.

Because after today, I'm gonna
haunt the shit out of you.

I'm gonna haunt your ass all
over this goddamn town.

I am not Wally. I'm a
lot bigger than Wally.

Threaten me and I'll have
pieces of you in the gutter...

and I'll blow the rest away.

One more thing, barfly.

You ought to know this before
your latest lost cause confesses.

Did you know Beechum volunteered
for a lie detector test?

And he flunked it big-time.
Sure, it's inadmissible.

It wasn't in the transcripts...

but it certainly
captured our attention.

So why don't you just
go pour yourself

a tall one and think about that?

You want a nip?

No, thanks. I'd better not.

Sorry, I forgot.

What's with Bob? He's been
giving you the evil eye all day.

Know something? It's
starting to work.

Did something happen at the
prison? Some big uproar?

Why would a guilty man volunteer
for a lie detector test?

Happens all the time. Perp
thinks he can slide one by.

Of course, innocent men
flunk them sometimes too.

Does Bob want you to take one?

That's a cute idea.

I don't think my
guilt's in any doubt.

Where's Bridget? I want
her to do some scutwork.

Women feel much more secure
in the workplace now.

She left. But I'll get your
coffee if you give me head.

Better yet, track down an
investigator in the Beechum case.

See if there was another...

witness on the scene.

A kid. Just an address
and a name will do.

You got it.

After that, get me some coffee.

Oakland Police. Sergeant Bartlett.

Donaldson at the Tribune. Who
headed the Beechum case?

Anyone there know
the Beechum case?

All of us. Anyone here.

Before Beechum comes
to the store...

There's another witness in
the parking lot, right?

Wrong. There's nothing
like that in the files.

How do you know? Have you looked?

Believe me, we know.

Everybody here has
memorised these files.

No other witnesses. Porterhouse
and Larson, that's it.

But a lot of circumstantial.

This is Donaldson at the Tribune.

On the Beechum case, was there a
record of a kid who was a witness?

A kid?

I don't think so.

- You're sure?
- Thanks anyway.

All right, thanks.

That was the whip in
the investigation.

Says it rings a bell. But he
doesn't remember any names.

Ardsley, who headed
the investigation,

retired. Florida somewhere.


Everett. Come here.


Don't look so happy about it.

Who said anything
about being happy?

I understand your
prison interview went

beyond just a
human-interest sidebar.

I coloured outside
the lines a bit,

but the warden wasn't
sore about it.

He just probably thought you
were back on the booze.

There's no smoking
in the building.

You got a minute?

I can't tolerate this.

Steve, say you're sorry.
Bob, punch his lights out.

This isn't personal.

I gave him an important story
with specific instructions.

The newspaper promised...

- The guy is not guilty.
- Come on.

This isn't a human-interest
sidebar. It's a crucifixion.

Want me to look at
the cross and say

"How's the weather up there?"

I've got all the personal
crap here in this book.

He believes in God. Thinks
he's going to heaven.

He's happy as shit. He's
glad they're juicing him.

- Go write your sidebar.
- That's not the point.

Of course it's not the point.

Fine. Take Steve off the
execution and put Harvey on it.

- That's still not the point.
- We know what the point is.

I can't work with you, Steve.

You're a good reporter...

but there's plenty of good

reporters here who
follow instructions.

I can't work with him.

Why don't you hit me in the face?

I'll fall down. I'll bleed.

I'll do all that. I deserve it.

Then go home and hit
your wife. She likes it.

Nice one, babe.

We can't all live in the
world of your imagination.

I won't hit anybody, because
that's exactly what you'd want.

If Patricia needs
to find something

outside our marriage,
she can find it.

My marriage isn't your
business, number one.

Number two, you're
a thoughtless...

Unbalanced man. I
can't work with him.

I've enjoyed this
episode of Oprah...

I got the shooter.

We shouldn't confuse the issues.

I got the guy who
killed Amy Wilson.

Even if it's the guy
who shot JFK...

Bob, shut up.

How have you got him?

I've got him. I know who he is.

All right, who is he?

He's a guy. He's a
guy who was there.

You're telling me that the
shooter is a guy who was there?

Great. Should I hold the front
page or wait for two sources?

The D.A. won't give me the name.

- What about the defence?
- The defence doesn't have it.

This is ridiculous.



What about the cops?

They're sitting on it.


Sorry, Alan. This
is just too much.

Alan, I gotta be
clear on this, okay?

This is causing
problems for everybody.

I love the paper but
I'm ready to go.

I can't work like this. This
environment's become intolerable.

"Intolerable environment"?
Are you a feminist?

Are you a cooze?
What's wrong with you?

You gotta give me notice.


My contract says if you dump
me, you gotta give me notice.

How much notice do you want?

Six hours and seven minutes.

Testing red. Testing red.

Testing tan. Testing tan.

Testing white. Testing white.

Testing black.

We're in San Quentin's
gas chamber...

now converted for
lethal injection.

The first syringe delivers five
grams of sodium Pentothal...

and that will put him to
sleep within a few seconds.

Then the injection line is flushed

with 20 cc's of saline solution...

and then he'll be given 50
cc's of pancuronium bromide.

Now that is a muscle paralyser,
and at that point...

he won't be able to breathe.

And finally, 50 cc's
of potassium chloride.

And that'll stop his heart.

Yes, this is...

This is Steve's wife. Why?

What's the matter?
Something happen to him?

Already, the vultures come...

So steal. Go ahead.

Mr Ziegler?

I'm not a thief.

I'm a friend of Michelle's,
a colleague at the paper.

My friends, most of them knock.

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry about Michelle.
She was really topnotch.

A really fine reporter.

So you came to give the eulogy?

Michelle was on a story.

A man will be executed tonight.
I think he's innocent.

I think the answer may
be in Michelle's papers.

Something Michelle did?

Something she was onto, yeah.

So look.


I've been going through
her things too.

See this?

Gave her this when she
was 9. She loved it.

She saved everything.

Look at this.

I don't know when she did
it. Must have been 4 or 5.

Where'd this come from? Over here?

This anything?

"Warren Russel, 17 years old.

4331 Knight Street. Interviewed
July 7th at own request."

"Says he bought a soda
and left. Saw nothing.

Something fishy here."

Mr Ziegler, that Michelle, she
was really on top of things.


Sorry, Frank.

We'll have to ask Mrs
Beechum to leave now.

Give us a minute, okay?


I don't think I can do this.

I won't get a chance to
say goodbye later on.

So I need you to take care of
yourself and our little girl.

You know I will, baby.

- I will.
- And give her this.

And don't forget.

It ain't much, but it's...

It'll be precious to her.

It will be her most
precious thing.

I really hate that you
have to go through this.

I know.

Okay, I love you.

I love you.

I wanted to be there for you.

God knows I wanted to see
my little girl grow up.

If we just had more time...

We have to be thankful
for the time we had.

It's that it was short.

At least we made Gail.

We made Gail together.

We made something
beautiful in this world.

You look at her and remember
how much I love you.

Can you do that?

God, Frank, I'm so scared.

If I can see your face...

I'll talk to you every day.

- If I can see you at the end.
- Come with me.

You going to be talking to me?

If I could see your face.

How did this ever happen to us?

The only thing in my life...

that made it worth anything.

God bless you for that.

God bless you for that.

Who's there?

I'm Steve Everett. I'm a
reporter for the Tribune.

Go home.

And quit casing that man's car.

It's almost your dinnertime.

Go home.

- Sorry about them kids.
- That's all right.

I'm just glad to find you here.

What, you thought I
moved to the suburbs?

Come on in.

And you are...?

Angela Russel.

And Warren?

My grandson.

Is this Warren here?

It is.

Want to tell me why you're here?

Mrs Russel, it's important
that I talk to Warren.

It's important I
talk to him tonight.

It is? And what could
be so important,

if you don't mind my asking?

There's a man on death row, and
they're gonna execute him tonight.

They say he killed
a store clerk...

six years ago. An Amy Wilson.

I think he's innocent.

I think Warren knows
something about it.

Why would you think
a thing like that?

He's the only other
person that was there.

And how do we know that?

The witnesses didn't
see anyone else.

Wait a minute. There
were witnesses,

even though nobody else was there?

- Yes, that's right...
- No, wait. Help me out here.

I am getting confused.

There was an accountant
and a housewife.

White people?


And I bet...

that girl that got killed,
that Amy Wilson...

she was white too, wasn't she?

That's right. But I don't think...

You don't think those
nice white people...

would kill that nice white girl.

But they all looked around...

and what do you know?
There was a black boy.

Look, it isn't like that.

Will you just think back in
your mind? Six years ago.

Was Warren using drugs
or anything like that?

He was into drugs.

Did he own a gun?

They all own guns, Mr
Everett. Don't you know that?

All those black dope-fiend
boys, they all own guns.

Can I just talk to him?

Do you know where he is?

Yes, I do.

And no, you can't.

Look, an innocent man
is gonna die tonight.

I have seen a lot
of innocent folk...

die in this part of
town, Mr Everett.

But it's funny.

I ain't never seen you
around here before.

Mrs Russel, you're making this
into a racial thing, and it isn't.

The man on death row,
he's a black man too.

Did you know that?

They'll kill him at midnight. I

can't help unless
I have the facts.

The only fact I know,
Mr Everett...

is that my grandson, Warren...

he's been in his grave now
going on three years.

Stabbed out there in the park.

My Warren...

was a loving child.

But I don't remember
you coming around...

looking for the facts
when he was killed.

Nobody came around here
looking for the facts then.

Fucking loser.

Goddamn it.

We're told he's having the
last meal he requested...

steak and French
fries. Oddly enough...

he also requested two
six-packs of Coke.

If you're just tuning in,
we'll repeat our top story.

Convicted killer Frank
Beechum has, for

the first time,
confessed his crime.

The confession was made
to the chaplain...

as an expression of remorse...

for the murder of Amy Wilson and

her unborn child six years ago.

A source in the governor's
office says despite this...

the execution will proceed at

one minute after midnight tonight.

And in other news, the
market slumped badly...

I am tired.

Aren't you supposed
to be sleeping?

Why are you here, Daddy?

I'm here to see you,
you little goon.

Where did you go?

A wild-goose chase.

You went chasing?

Chasing salvation.
Never did find it.

Just disappeared.

Let me tell you...

About today, I'm sorry.

Maybe this weekend we'll...

go and spend the whole
day? Play Slow Zoo.

And this time, could we see...

the hippopotamus?

I've already talked to him.
We have an appointment.

My little Daddy.

I'll go to sleep now.

Okay, I think that's a good idea.

Close them, now.

If this were a bullet...

you'd be dead.

Bob call you?

What difference does
it make who called me?

I know you're going to apologise.

I know you will try to do better.

But I don't want this any more.

Because I'm tired.

I just think this'll
be hard on her.

Barbara, I can change.

Can't we just erase all this?

I just had a terribly
ridiculous day.

It isn't just today.

But today is the end of it.

Today I understand.

Hell, I know I've been...

tempted a lot, but...

But I love you, baby.

It's just that I...

I'm just kind of coming
apart here, and I didn't...

I know it's nobody's
fault but my own.

I need you. I got to put
these pieces back together.

I feel sorry for you.

You and your famous
nose for a story.

You think you can just...

sniff your way along, you know?

From one hunch to another...

one girl to another, one drink

to another when you're drinking.

But I'm not one of
your stories, Ev.

I'm your wife.

You can't line up all the facts...

And think you know
something about me.

Your hunches...

are shit.

Even when they're
right, they're shit.

They're all I've got.

I hope they do somebody
some good someday...

because they sure as hell didn't
do us any good, did they?

I packed all your stuff.

You can take it now, or
you can come back later.

Please, just get out.

Get out of here, Ev, please.

Just get out.

Sometimes, the
governor's aides call me

on matters that
concern the governor.

In giving spiritual guidance
and ministrations...

I might have misunderstood
what the prisoner said to me.

But these things happen
from time to time.

If he says, meaning
the prisoner...

Says, "I'm sorry,"
under these extreme...

You know what you've done, right?
I have to call the governor.

I have to issue a
retraction to the

press to say there's
no confession.

Beechum has his own pastor.
What the hell were you doing?

You made me look unprofessional.

Not a good thing to do.

Spiritually speaking.

If any of the men feel
they need counselling...

I'll be here.

Long as they need me...

I'll be here.

You sure you want to do this?

Does a bear shit on Goldilocks?

I don't know. I've never
been asked that before.

That's the trouble
with having kids.

It screws up your quips.

So you're seriously
rolling off the

waggon. Must have
been a rough day.

Yeah, lost my wife, lost my kid...

Lost my goddamn job.
Is that rough enough?

Did you lose your car too?

Because if you start
driving in this...

I'm the best fucking
driver on the planet.

I'm talking to a dead man.

Will you leave me your
stamp collection?

How about filling this up? I ain't
eaten anything all day, either.

Jesus Christ.

Go the fuck home, will you?

Ain't got no home.

I ain't got no fucking home.

You have confidence...

the state should sanction an
execution to satisfy your rage.

Wait. This isn't about my
rage. Let's be honest.

My daughter was killed in
cold blood for no reason.

He took $96...

and a ring and a locket
I'd given her...

for her 16th birthday.

My Warren...

was a loving child.

That's someone who doesn't
deserve rights as a human being.

- Will you be there tonight?
- You bet.

July 15?

July 15.

Mind if I use your bathroom?

You know where it is, right?

The fucking money.

Don't hurt me, please.

What the fuck? This is
all you fucking got?

The 4th of July.
We're not that busy.

Give me the chain.

- Fucking chain.
- No, please, not that.



Still on the Beechum story...

the report we got an hour ago...

in which Frank Beechum
confessed to his crime...

Are you driving?

You sack of shit. Let's get going.

There are two executioners.
Each one has a button.

Each button is connected
to a computer...

that scrambles the circuits
so no one knows who does it.

Brother Beechum, let me
tell you of the Lord.

He is my refuge and
He is my fortress.

He is my God.

And therefore, even in the darkest

moments, even when
there is no hope...

He will deliver you
from the snare...

of the fowler.

Step in there.

That Robinson man
on TV, I saw him.

And I started remembering that
night Warren gave me that locket.

Her maiden name. And I started
remembering Warren's face.

I can always read that boy's face.

He did a terrible
thing, Mr Everett.

He wasn't a bad boy, but I
know he did a terrible thing.

They're gonna kill that man
in less than a half-hour.

We can't get to the
prison in that time.

You're right, lady.
Fasten your seat belt.

Reverend, it's time.

Set him up.

There's this boy sold Warren
a gun around that time.

This boy's in jail.

He might talk to them if
they give him time off.

Mrs Russel, I could kiss you.

Release your hands.

Gun it, mister.

We go fast.

Pull over. Pull over
and stop the car.

Don't stop now.

Prepare yourself, all right?

I'm going to attempt
this manoeuvre.

They really ought to do
something about that place.

Boy, something must be going on.

Maybe a fire, another
accident on the curve.

"To all whom it may
concern, be it known...

whereas the Superior Court
and county of Alameda...

ordered that Frank Louis Beechum

suffer the death penalty...

within the walls of San Quentin...

for the crime of
murder in the first

degree with special

I love you.

I love you.

McCardle. Yes, sir.

We have a go.

But it's too late.

Go. Go.

What's up? It's official,
it's for the kids.

I need some charity.

It's charity on
toast, baby. Come on.

How you doing?

Thank you very much.

How you doing, sir?

Kate like that Dalmatian?

She loved it.

Even my ex managed to muster
up a little enthusiasm.

I've got to get something
better for Christmas.

Sheepdog, collie, we
got Saint Bernards...

How about a hippopotamus?

Check it out. Local designer,
based on the one at the zoo.

Yeah, this is a beauty.

Think a homeless man
can afford this?

You're not homeless.

Well, I'm wifeless and jobless...

and I live in a hotel.

That's unless...

you'd be interested
in putting me up.

First, you have a
big book contract.

Money's already spent.

Second, everybody says you'll win
the Pulitzer Prize or something.

I think everyone's being
a little optimistic.

And third of all, I
have a boyfriend.

Well, that's good.

Maybe he's out of town
for the holidays.

Cash or charge, Ev?

I better charge it.

I'm charging everything
else these days.

Give me some charity,
baby. It's for the kids.

It's official.

I need some charity on toast.
Come over here, help me out.

I know you got some charity.

You famous. Rich and famous.

I know you got charity on
toast. Give me some charity.

It's for the kids.

That's right, come on.

Give me 20, give me
100. Come on, Steve.

Take it before my wife
does, and get out of here.

A 10?

Steve, you got more than that.
Come on, now. It's for the kids.

All right. All
right, newspaperman.

I been here two hours
freezing my ass off.

I'm going home.

You haven't got a home.

I got no wife and
no elves, either.

You want to be Santa Claus
these days, you on your own.

You're right there, pal.

Santa Claus rides alone.

It's for the kids.


Come on.

Come on, Daddy.

Come on, now, Daddy.