A man searching for justice with a broken memory, determined to avenge his wife’s death, but will his identity be his downfall?
The air was thick with the scent of gasoline as the warehouse went up in flames. Leonard Shelby watched helplessly from a distance, as he realized that his search for justice had only led to more pain and anguish.
He had been chasing the man who had raped and murdered his wife for months, relying on his tattoos and notes to guide him through his short-term memory loss. But in the end, it had all been for nothing.
As the flames engulfed the building, Leonard knew that he would never be able to escape his own faulty memory. It was his biggest enemy in the fight for justice, and he was beginning to wonder if he would ever find the closure he desperately sought.
Chapter 1: Leonard Awakens
Leonard Shelby woke up in a dingy motel room, groggy and disoriented. He sat up in bed, his head pounding, and looked around the room, trying to piece together the events of the previous night.
He saw a few empty beer bottles on the nightstand and realized that he must have been drinking. But he couldn’t remember anything else after that. He looked down at his arms and saw several tattoos, which he knew were his notes to himself.
He stood up and stumbled to the bathroom, hoping that the cool water would help him clear his head. As he splashed water on his face, he saw a Polaroid picture taped to the mirror. It was a picture of a man, but Leonard didn’t recognize him. He felt a pang of frustration and confusion as he realized that he had no idea why he had taken the picture or who the man was.
As he left the bathroom, he saw a manila envelope on the nightstand, with the words “Don’t forget – Find Him” scrawled on it in black marker. He opened the envelope and found a handful of Polaroid pictures, all of different people, and a few notes that he had written to himself.
Leonard knew that these were all part of his search for his wife’s killer. He had been tracking the man for months, but his short-term memory loss made it almost impossible for him to make any progress. He could barely remember what had happened a few minutes ago, let alone what happened weeks or months ago.
He dressed quickly and left the motel room, determined to continue his search. As he drove through the city, he looked at the tattoos on his arms, trying to remember what each one meant. They were his only lifeline in a world where he couldn’t trust his own memory.
He arrived at a small bar on the outskirts of town, a place where he had been before. A woman behind the bar looked up as he entered and asked, “What can I get you?”
Leonard hesitated before replying, “I’m looking for someone.”
The woman raised an eyebrow and said, “Who?”
Leonard searched his mind for a name, but came up empty. He looked at the tattoos on his arms, trying to find a clue, but they didn’t offer any help. He finally said, “I don’t remember his name, but I know he’s a bad guy. I’m trying to find him.”
The woman looked at him skeptically, but then a man sitting at the end of the bar spoke up. “Are you talking about Teddy?”
Leonard’s heart raced as he heard the name. Could this Teddy be the man he was looking for? He turned to the man and asked, “Do you know him?”
The man nodded and said, “Yeah, I know him. He’s trouble. You don’t want to mess with him.”
Leonard felt a surge of determination. He had to find Teddy, no matter what it took. He thanked the man and left the bar, heading back to his car. As he drove away, he felt a glimmer of hope. Maybe this was the break he had been looking for. But he knew that with his faulty memory, anything could happen. He had to stay focused, no matter what.
Chapter 2: Natalie
Leonard Shelby sat at the bar of a rundown tavern, staring at the drink in front of him. He had followed a new lead, one that had brought him to this dingy place, hoping to find a clue about his wife’s killer. His eyes flickered over to the jukebox as a song ended and the bartender, a blonde woman in her thirties, approached him.
“Can I get you another drink?” she asked, filling his glass with whiskey.
Leonard glanced at the woman’s nametag, which read Natalie. She was pretty, with a sharp wit and a hint of danger in her eyes. He wondered if she could be trusted.
“You seem like a man on a mission,” Natalie said, leaning against the bar. “What brings you to this neck of the woods?”
Leonard hesitated for a moment, unsure whether he should reveal his mission to a stranger. But he needed help, and he needed it badly. He pulled out a picture of his wife and showed it to Natalie.
“I’m looking for the man who did this to her,” he said, his voice barely above a whisper.
Natalie studied the picture before nodding.
“I might be able to help you,” she said, slipping the photo into her pocket. “But it’s not going to be easy. This guy is dangerous, and you don’t even remember who he is.”
“I remember enough,” Leonard said, fingering the tattoos on his arm that contained important details about his quest.
Natalie’s eyes darted to Leonard’s arm. “What’s with the tattoos?”
“It’s how I keep track of my life,” Leonard explained. “I can’t remember anything for more than a few minutes, so I have to write everything down. Even then, I still forget things.”
Natalie’s expression softened. “That’s rough,” she said, her voice low.
Leonard nodded. “It’s been a struggle. But it’s the only way I can find the killer.”
Natalie leaned closer, her eyes glittering with mischief. “Well, it just so happens that I know a thing or two about tracking people down,” she said. “If you’re willing to pay the price, I can help you find him.”
Leonard frowned. “What kind of price?”
Natalie shrugged. “Depends on what you want. You need information, I need a favor. Maybe we can work something out.”
Leonard considered her offer. He didn’t want to get mixed up with someone like Natalie, but he needed all the help he could get. He pulled out a wad of cash and placed it on the counter.
“I’ll pay you for your time,” he said. “But I won’t do anything illegal.”
Natalie smirked. “Suit yourself. But you’re going to need me if you want to find this guy.”
Leonard nodded, feeling a sense of unease settle in his stomach. He had a feeling that Natalie was going to be trouble, but he had no other options. He needed to find his wife’s killer before time ran out.
Together, they began to piece together the clues and follow the trail that would lead them to the killer. However, Leonard quickly realized that Natalie had a hidden agenda. As they got closer to finding the killer, Leonard began to suspect that Natalie was not who she appeared to be. He wondered if she was leading him down a dangerous path, or if she was genuinely trying to help him.
Despite his doubts, Leonard continued to follow Natalie’s lead. He knew that he had to find his wife’s killer, even if it meant trusting someone he shouldn’t. The hunt for the killer had become an obsession, and he would stop at nothing to bring him to justice.
Chapter 3: Teddy
Leonard Shelby sat at the bar, nursing a drink. He had been searching for his wife’s killer for months, and every lead had come up empty. But tonight, he had a good feeling about the man he was going to meet.
Teddy had promised to help him find the killer. He said he had information that could lead them to the person responsible. Leonard had his doubts, but he was willing to try anything.
He took a sip of his drink, keeping his eyes focused on the door. It was a small bar in a seedy part of town. Leonard felt out of place, but he didn’t care. He was determined to find justice for his wife.
Finally, the door opened and a man walked in. He was tall and thin, with thinning hair and a scruffy beard. He wore a leather jacket and jeans, looking like he had just rolled out of bed.
“Teddy?” Leonard asked, standing up.
“Yeah, that’s me,” the man said, walking over to the bar. “You must be Leonard.”
“That’s right,” Leonard said, extending his hand. “Thanks for meeting me.”
“No problem,” Teddy said, taking a seat next to Leonard. “I’m always happy to help out a guy in need.”
Leonard studied the man for a moment, noticing the way he spoke with a hint of sarcasm. He wasn’t sure if he could trust him, but he had no other leads.
“So, what do you know about my wife’s murder?” Leonard asked.
“I know more than the police, that’s for sure,” Teddy said, taking a drink. “The guy who did it is still out there, and I think I know who he is.”
Leonard leaned in, his heart racing. “Who? Tell me.”
Teddy took another drink before speaking. “It’s a guy named John G. He’s a small-time crook, but he’s been known to get violent. I’ve heard he’s been bragging about killing your wife.”
Leonard felt a surge of anger. He had never heard of this John G before, but if he was the one who had killed his wife, he would make him pay.
“Where can I find him?” Leonard asked.
“I’m not sure,” Teddy said, shrugging. “He’s been laying low lately. But I know some guys who might know where he is. I can make some calls and see what I can find out.”
Leonard nodded, feeling a glimmer of hope. “Okay, do that.”
Teddy finished his drink and stood up. “I’ll be in touch,” he said, walking towards the door.
Leonard watched him go, feeling a sense of unease. He wasn’t sure if he could trust Teddy, but he had no choice. He had to find this John G and make him pay for what he had done.
As Leonard left the bar, he couldn’t shake the feeling that something was off about Teddy. He couldn’t put his finger on it, but he knew he had to be careful.
He got into his car and drove home, his mind racing with thoughts of revenge. He would find John G, and he would make him pay. No matter what it took.
Chapter 4: The Truth Revealed
Leonard sat in his car, staring at the warehouse in front of him. This was the place where he was supposed to find answers about his wife’s murder, but he couldn’t remember why. Everything was a blur in his mind, and the notes on his body only provided little help. He knew he had been here before, but he couldn’t remember what had happened.
He took a deep breath and stepped out of the car. The cold concrete floor beneath his feet made him shiver, and the dim lighting did nothing to calm his nerves. He glanced at his tattoos again, trying to make sense of them. “Find him and kill him” was written on his chest, and “Don’t believe his lies” on his hand. He had no idea who “he” was or what lies he should avoid.
As he made his way through the warehouse, Leonard’s heart started racing. He felt that he was getting closer to the truth. Suddenly, the sound of metal hitting the ground echoed through the warehouse. He turned around, ready to face whoever was there, but he saw no one.
He continued walking until he reached the back of the warehouse. There, he found a door with a padlock. A key was attached to his belt, and he realized that it must have been there for a reason. He unlocked the door and swung it open, revealing a staircase leading down to a basement.
Leonard’s heart was pounding as he made his way down the stairs. Once he reached the bottom, he saw a man sitting in front of him. The man was holding a photo of Leonard’s wife.
“You’re the one who killed my wife,” Leonard said, his voice trembling with rage.
The man just looked at him with a blank expression.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” the man said calmly.
Leonard lunged towards him, but the man was quick to dodge. The two men got into a scuffle, and Leonard managed to pin the man down.
“Tell me the truth!” Leonard shouted. “Why did you kill her?”
The man just stared at him without saying a word. Leonard’s grip on him tightened until he heard a crack. The man’s neck snapped, and he lay there motionless.
Leonard stood up, looking at the dead man in front of him. He didn’t feel any satisfaction or relief, only confusion. He couldn’t remember who the man was or why he had killed his wife. He wondered if he had done the right thing, or if he had just killed an innocent man.
As he made his way back to his car, Leonard felt defeated. He realized that his memory loss had made him a slave to his past, and he didn’t know if he would ever find the truth about his wife’s murder. He knew he had to keep searching, but he didn’t know where to start.
Leonard drove back to the motel, still lost in thought. He didn’t notice the black SUV that had been following him since he left the warehouse. The SUV pulled up next to him, and a man got out, approaching Leonard’s car.
“Hello, Leonard,” the man said, pulling out a gun. “We need to talk.”
Chapter 5: Another Clue
Leonard Shelby stood outside the motel room, staring at the number on the door. He couldn’t remember how long he had been staying here, but he knew from his notes that he had to check the room again. He had been searching for his wife’s killer for so long that he had lost track of time.
Pushing open the door, he stepped into the dimly lit room. The air was stale, and the curtains were drawn, blocking out most of the sunlight. The smell of cigarette smoke lingered in the air. Leonard couldn’t remember if he had smoked, but he knew he hated the smell.
The room was sparse, with only a bed, a small table, and two chairs. Leonard walked over to the table and picked up his notes. He had written a new clue on a scrap of paper that he found in his pocket. It was a name, “Dodd,” but he didn’t remember who that was. He hoped that he had written more notes to jog his memory.
He looked around the room, hoping to find more clues. Under the bed, he found a shoebox. Inside, he found a Polaroid photo of a man with a shaved head and a tattoo on his neck. Leonard didn’t recognize him, nor did he remember taking the photo.
Leonard checked his tattoos again, hoping to find a clue. He found one that read, “Don’t believe his lies.” He couldn’t remember who “he” was or what the lie was, but he knew it was important.
He walked over to the door and looked out into the hallway. He saw a man walking towards him, and he recognized him as the motel’s owner. The man looked familiar, but Leonard couldn’t remember why.
“Is everything alright, sir?” the man asked.
Leonard hesitated before answering. He didn’t trust anyone, not even the motel owner. He decided to be vague. “I’m just trying to remember something,” he said.
The motel owner nodded and walked away.
Leonard continued his search, but he couldn’t find any more clues. He went back to the table and sat down. He felt defeated, as if he was never going to find his wife’s killer. He couldn’t remember anything, and it was frustrating.
Suddenly, he heard a knock on the door. He stood up and cautiously walked over to the door. He looked through the peephole and saw a woman standing outside. He didn’t recognize her.
“Who are you?” he asked.
The woman smiled. “I’m Gwen. I’m here to help you.”
Leonard was suspicious. He didn’t remember asking for help, and he didn’t trust anyone. “How do you know me?”
Gwen held up a piece of paper. “You left this note for me.”
Leonard looked at the paper, but he didn’t recognize his own handwriting. The note read, “Help me find Dodd.”
Leonard hesitated before letting Gwen in. He didn’t know if he could trust her, but he was desperate for help.
Gwen walked into the room and sat down. “I heard you were looking for Dodd.”
Leonard nodded. “I don’t know who he is, but I know I need to find him.”
Gwen pulled out a notepad and pen. “Tell me everything you remember.”
Leonard began to recount everything he knew about the case, starting from the day his wife was murdered. He told her about Teddy and Natalie, about the tattoos on his body, and about his short-term memory loss.
Gwen listened intently, jotting down notes as he spoke. When he finished, she looked up at him. “I think I can help you find Dodd.”
Leonard was skeptical. “How?”
Gwen explained that she had connections with the local police department. She could access their database and find information on Dodd. Leonard didn’t know if he could trust her, but he didn’t have any other leads. He agreed to let her help.
Gwen left the motel room, promising to return soon with new information. Leonard was left alone again, but he felt hopeful for the first time in a long time. He sat down on the bed and stared at the wall, wondering what else he had forgotten.
Chapter 6: The Killer
Leonard sat in his car outside a nondescript building, staring out the windshield. He had followed Teddy’s instructions and arrived at what was supposed to be the final stop on his hunt for his wife’s killer. But he was hesitant to go inside.
He traced his fingers over his tattoos, one by one, trying to steady his nerves. The tattoos were the only thing he could rely on to remember his mission. They were his guide, his lifeline. But sometimes, even they could be misleading.
Leonard took a deep breath, grabbed his keys, and stepped out of the car. The building was small, just a single-story structure with a shabby facade. He hesitated for a moment, wondering if he had made a mistake. But he knew he had to see this through.
He pushed open the door and stepped inside. The room was dimly lit, with a single bulb flickering overhead. He could hear muffled voices coming from somewhere in the back. He moved towards the sound, his hand hovering near the gun tucked into the waistband of his pants.
As he rounded the corner, he saw Teddy standing in front of a desk, his arms folded across his chest. A man in a suit stood on the other side, looking nervous. The man turned and saw Leonard, and his expression shifted from anxiety to fear.
“Who are you?” he demanded.
Leonard didn’t respond. He just stood there, studying the man’s face. It was a face he had never seen before. He felt a wave of disappointment wash over him.
“I thought you said he was here,” Leonard said, turning to Teddy.
Teddy looked confused. “What are you talking about?”
“The killer,” Leonard said, his voice rising. “You said he was here.”
Teddy’s face darkened. “I never said that.”
Leonard felt a surge of anger. He had trusted Teddy, had followed his instructions without question. And now he was telling him that he had been wrong all along.
“I don’t believe you,” Leonard said, his hand tightening around his gun.
Teddy took a step forward. “I think you need to leave, Leonard. You’re not thinking straight.”
Leonard felt his heart pounding in his chest. He didn’t know who to believe anymore. But he knew he couldn’t leave without answers. He raised the gun, pointing it at Teddy.
“Tell me the truth,” he said.
Teddy held up his hands. “Leonard, put the gun down. You’re going to hurt someone.”
“I’ll hurt whoever I have to,” Leonard said, his finger tightening on the trigger.
Suddenly, a door on the other side of the room burst open. A figure appeared, holding a gun. Leonard’s instincts kicked in, and he fired. The figure fell to the ground, and Leonard felt a sickening sense of satisfaction wash over him.
But then he looked closer, and he felt a wave of horror wash over him. The figure on the ground was a woman. A woman he had never seen before.
Leonard stumbled backwards, his gun slipping from his fingers. The room began to spin, and he felt himself falling backwards. He hit the ground hard, and everything went black.
When he came to, he was lying on the floor, with Teddy and the man in the suit hovering over him. He tried to sit up, but they held him down.
“What happened?” he asked, his head spinning.
“You shot that woman,” Teddy said, his voice strained. “You need to get out of here, Leonard. Now.”
Leonard tried to protest, but the room was spinning too fast. He felt himself slipping away, into the darkness, and he knew that he had failed.
Chapter 7: The Plan
Leonard sat at the edge of the bed in his motel room, staring at the wall. He had just come up with a plan to catch his wife’s killer, but he wasn’t sure if it was the right thing to do. He knew that he couldn’t trust his memory, and he didn’t know if he could trust his own judgment.
He had spent the past few days going over everything that he knew about the case, going through his notes and his tattoos, trying to piece together the puzzle in his mind. And finally, he had come up with a plan.
He picked up the phone and dialed Natalie’s number. She answered after a few rings.
“Hey, it’s Leonard. I need to talk to you.”
“Sure, what’s up?” Natalie asked.
“I think I have an idea of how we can catch the killer,” Leonard said. “But I need your help.”
“What do you need me to do?” Natalie asked.
“I need you to help me get Teddy on board,” Leonard said. “We need all three of us to make this work.”
“Okay, I’ll talk to Teddy,” Natalie said. “What’s the plan?”
Leonard explained his plan to Natalie, and she listened intently. When he was finished, there was a long silence on the other end of the line.
“I don’t know, Leonard,” Natalie finally said. “This sounds dangerous.”
“I know it’s dangerous,” Leonard said. “But I have to do this. I have to find the killer.”
Natalie sighed. “Okay, I’ll talk to Teddy. We’ll figure something out.”
“Thanks, Natalie. I owe you one,” Leonard said.
After he hung up the phone, Leonard realized that he had a problem. He had no idea how to get in touch with the killer. He had a vague memory of seeing him at the warehouse, but he couldn’t remember anything else about him.
He went through his notes and his tattoos again, searching for any clues. And then he found it. A small note that he had written to himself: “Meet him at the bar.”
Leonard didn’t know who he was supposed to meet or when he was supposed to meet them, but it was a start. He got up from the bed and headed out the door.
He walked to the bar, his heart pounding in his chest. He had been to the bar before, but he couldn’t remember when. He pushed open the door and stepped inside.
The bar was dimly lit, and the air was thick with the smell of alcohol and cigarette smoke. Leonard scanned the room, searching for anyone who looked familiar. And then he saw him.
Teddy was sitting at the end of the bar, nursing a drink. Leonard walked over and sat down next to him.
“Hey, Teddy,” Leonard said.
“Leonard,” Teddy said. “What can I do for you?”
“I need your help,” Leonard said.
“With what?” Teddy asked.
“I need to find the killer,” Leonard said. “And I need your help to do it.”
Teddy looked at Leonard, studying him for a moment. “Okay, I’m in,” he finally said.
Leonard breathed a sigh of relief. “Thank you, Teddy. I knew I could count on you.”
“So, what’s the plan?” Teddy asked.
Leonard explained his plan to Teddy, and he listened intently. When Leonard was finished, Teddy nodded.
“I like it,” Teddy said. “But it’s risky. Are you sure you want to do this?”
“I have to do it,” Leonard said. “I have to find the killer.”
“Okay, I’ll help you,” Teddy said. “But we need to be careful. One wrong move, and this could blow up in our faces.”
Leonard nodded. “I understand. We’ll be careful.”
They sat at the bar for a while longer, going over the details of the plan. And then Leonard left, feeling more confident than he had in a long time. He knew that the plan was risky, but he also knew that it was the only way to catch the killer.
He headed back to his motel room, feeling a sense of purpose that he hadn’t felt in a long time. He knew that the next few days were going to be dangerous, but he was ready for whatever lay ahead.
Chapter 8: The Confrontation
Leonard couldn’t believe he had finally tracked down his wife’s killer. He had been searching for so long that he had almost given up hope of ever finding justice. But here he was, standing in front of the man responsible for his wife’s death.
The killer was a tall, muscular man with a scar above his eyebrow. He had a menacing look in his eyes that made Leonard’s blood run cold. Leonard pulled out a gun and aimed it at the man’s chest. He felt a surge of adrenaline rush through his body.
“I’ve been looking for you for a long time,” Leonard said, his voice shaking.
The killer just smirked. “You’re wasting your time, buddy,” he said. “You don’t even remember who I am.”
Leonard’s heart sank. It was true. He couldn’t remember the man’s face from one minute to the next. He had to rely on his notes and the tattoos on his body to keep track of what was happening. But he knew he had to try. He had to do something to avenge his wife’s death.
He took a deep breath and steadied his aim. “I may not remember your face, but I remember what you did,” he said.
The killer just chuckled. “You’re a sad case, you know that?” he said. “You’ve spent so long chasing shadows that you’ve lost sight of what’s really important.”
Leonard’s mind was racing. He couldn’t let the killer get away. He had to act fast. He took another deep breath and pulled the trigger.
The gunshot echoed through the warehouse. Leonard watched in horror as the killer fell to the ground, blood spreading across his shirt. He felt sick to his stomach. He had never taken a life before. He had always thought of himself as a good man, but now he wasn’t so sure.
He walked over to the killer’s body and searched his pockets. He found a piece of paper with some numbers written on it. He didn’t know what they meant, but he knew they were important. He pocketed the paper and walked out of the warehouse, feeling numb.
As he stepped outside, he was blinded by the sunlight. He shielded his eyes and saw Natalie and Teddy waiting for him. They both looked concerned.
“Are you okay?” Natalie asked.
Leonard just nodded. He didn’t trust himself to speak.
“What happened in there?” Teddy asked.
Leonard didn’t answer. He just kept walking, his mind spinning with thoughts of what he had just done.
They drove in silence for a while, until Natalie broke the silence. “We need to get out of here,” she said. “The cops will be here any minute.”
Leonard just nodded. He didn’t know where they were going, but he didn’t care. All he wanted to do was get away from the scene of the crime.
As they drove, Leonard’s mind drifted back to his wife. He wondered if she would be proud of what he had done. He wondered if she would even recognize him now, after all the years that had passed. He felt a sense of emptiness that he couldn’t shake.
After what felt like hours, they finally arrived at a motel. Natalie got out of the car and went inside to get a room. Teddy stayed in the car with Leonard.
“You did the right thing, you know,” Teddy said.
Leonard just looked at him blankly. He didn’t know what to say.
“You had to do it,” Teddy continued. “For your wife. For yourself.”
Leonard just nodded. He knew that Teddy was right, but he didn’t feel any better about what he had done.
Natalie came back with a key and they all went inside the motel room. It was small and dingy, but it was a place to rest. Leonard collapsed onto the bed and closed his eyes. He was exhausted, both physically and mentally.
As he drifted off to sleep, he couldn’t help but think of what lay ahead. He had found his wife’s killer, but he wasn’t sure if it had been worth it. He had lost so much in the process, and he didn’t know if he could ever get it back. He wondered if he would ever be able to live a normal life again.
But for now, he just needed to rest. He closed his eyes and let himself drift off into a dreamless sleep.
Some scenes from the A.I. movie Memento
Title: Memory Lane
EXT. DARK ALLEYWAY – NIGHT
We open to a birds-eye view of a dimly lit alleyway. The sound of footsteps echoes through the empty street. We see a man in a trench coat and hat walking towards us. This is Leonard Shelby, our protagonist.
I have to believe in a world outside my own mind. I have to believe my actions still have meaning, even if I can’t remember them. I have to believe that when my eyes are closed, the world’s still there.
Leonard stops in front of a green dumpster and looks around. Suddenly, we see a figure emerge from the shadows behind him. It’s a tall man in a leather jacket. This is JOE, a drug dealer.
You got the money?
Leonard takes out a wad of cash from his pocket and hands it to Joe.
Where’s the stuff?
Joe pulls out a small baggie of powder and hands it to Leonard.
Be careful with this stuff, man. It’s pure bliss.
Leonard takes the baggie and looks at it for a moment before shoving it in his pocket.
As he turns to leave, Joe grabs him by the arm.
Hey, you owe me one more thing.
Leonard gives Joe a confused look.
What else could I owe you?
Joe leans in close to Leonard and whispers.
You owe me your memory.
Leonard recoils in shock as Joe lands a swift punch to his face.
FADE TO BLACK.
INT. LEONARD’S MOTEL ROOM – NIGHT
Leonard sits on the edge of his bed, surrounded by photos and notes about his wife’s murder. He turns to a page in his notebook where he’s written a name in big letters: JOHN G.
John G… who are you, John G?
Leonard’s phone rings, interrupting his thoughts. He hesitates before answering, but picks up.
Hey, it’s Natalie. You coming to the bar tonight?
Yeah, the one where we met. Remember?
Oh, right. Yeah, I’ll be there.
Great. See you then.
The line goes dead. Leonard sets down the phone and looks around the room, trying to remember how he got there. He glances at his tattoos for guidance.
Don’t trust her. Remember.
Leonard exits the motel room and walks to his car. As he drives, he looks at a polaroid of a car’s license plate with the number “G 5723” written on it.
John G… G 5723…
Leonard’s focus is broken when a car honks at him. He swerves back onto his side of the road, narrowly avoiding an accident.
Stay focused, Leonard. Find John G.
INT. NATALIE’S BAR – NIGHT
Leonard enters Natalie’s bar and looks around. He notices Natalie behind the counter and approaches her.
What do you know about a guy named Teddy?
Teddy? What do you want with him?
I’m looking for him.
Well, I can’t help you there. He doesn’t come around here anymore.
Are you sure?
Yeah, pretty sure. But listen, I’ll tell you what, why don’t you have a drink and we can talk about something else?
Leonard considers the offer.
Natalie pours Leonard a drink and the two of them sit down at a table.
So, what brings you to this part of town?
I’m looking for the man who killed my wife.
I’m sorry to hear that. Do you have any leads?
Yeah, I think so. But there’s a guy named Teddy who’s mixed up in it and I need to find him.
(raises an eyebrow)
Teddy, huh? He’s bad news, Leonard. I wouldn’t mess with him if I were you.
I have to find him.
Alright, but be careful. Teddy’s not someone you want to mess with.
Leonard finishes his drink and gets up to leave.
Thanks for the drink, Natalie.
Leonard exits the bar and Natalie watches him go, looking concerned.
INT. NATALIE’S BAR – NIGHT
Leonard and Natalie sit in a booth, sipping drinks. Leonard is studying his notes intently, while Natalie eyes him curiously.
So, this is what you’re going through every day? Trying to piece together your wife’s murder?
Every day. Every hour. Every minute.
That sounds exhausting.
It is. But I have to keep going. I can’t let him get away with it.
Well, you’ve got me now. We’ll find him together.
Leonard looks up at Natalie, surprised and grateful.
Thank you. I appreciate it.
Don’t mention it. I’ve been looking for a good distraction.
They both chuckle and drink their beers.
So, what’s our next move?
Leonard pulls out a napkin from his pocket, on which he’s scribbled some notes.
(shows the napkin)
I’ve got a lead on someone named Teddy. Apparently, he’s involved in my wife’s murder. I need to find him.
Let’s go then. I’ve got some contacts who might be able to help us out.
Leonard smiles, feeling a sense of relief and determination.
(shakes her hand)
You’re a lifesaver, Natalie.
They exit the bar together.
INT. NATALIE’S BAR – NIGHT
Leonard enters Natalie’s bar and takes a seat at the counter.
What can I get you?
Do you have any leads?
Natalie pours him a drink.
You should be careful who you trust around here, Lenny. There are some dangerous people who don’t take kindly to people like you.
I need to find him. I need to know who did it.
Natalie studies him for a moment, then leans in.
I might know someone who can help you. But it’s going to cost you.
I’ll pay whatever it takes.
I thought you might say that.
Leonard looks at his notes and realizes he needs to remember this conversation. He takes out a Polaroid camera and snaps a picture of Natalie.
Natalie. Money for a lead. Polaroid for memory.
Leonard looks at the photo, then tucks it into his jacket pocket.
So, what do you say? Are you ready to find the killer?
Leonard nods his head determinedly.
I’ll do whatever it takes.
(to be continued…)
INT. MOTELO ROOM – DAY
Leonard wakes up in a motel room, and he appears to be disoriented. He tries to get up from the bed, but his head starts spinning. He takes a deep breath and reaches out to the bedside table for his pen and notebook, which he uses to keep track of his day-to-day activities.
Okay, let’s see. I woke up in a motel room. No memory of how I got here, no memory of the past. But there’s something that I need to remember. Someone killed my wife. I’m searching for him.
He checks his notes and sees that he has written “John G” on it. He looks at the pen inked on his hand and sees the word “Find”. Leonard sighs, feeling frustrated yet determined to find the killer.
John G, who the hell is that? I don’t even remember writing this note on my hand.
Leonard gets up from the bed, and starts searching the room for any clues that might help him in his quest. He sees a pile of clothes on a chair, and a brown envelope on the floor. He opens the envelope and sees a picture of himself, with a handwritten note on it that says “Don’t believe his lies”.
Who sent me this? Did I write this note on this picture?
Suddenly, Leonard hears a loud knock on the door.
Leonard quickly hides the envelope and picture under the bed, and opens the door.
INT. MOTEL ROOM – CORRIDOR
A middle-aged woman with a name tag that reads “Maria” stands outside the door.
(in a thick accent)
Good morning, sir. You want me to clean up your room now?
Uh, sure, go ahead.
Maria walks into the room and starts cleaning up, while Leonard sits on the bed, feeling restless.
Do you know if anyone checked in here last night?
I don’t know, sir. I just come to clean.
Leonard nods, realizing it’s a dead end.
INT. MOTEL ROOM – DAY
Maria finishes cleaning, and walks out of the room. Leonard gets up and sees a tattoo on his arm that reads “Remember Sammy Jankis”. He looks at the clock on the wall and sees that it’s 11:30 am.
Sammy Jankis. Who the hell is Sammy Jankis?
Leonard picks up his pen and notebook, puts them in his pocket, and heads out of the motel room.
FADES TO BLACK.
The sound of a slamming door startles Leonard as he accidentally bumps into a man on the street. The man, named Jimmy, starts to yell at Leonard, accusing him of stealing his wallet. Leonard is confused and tries to explain that he doesn’t have it, but Jimmy doesn’t believe him. Suddenly, two police officers arrive on the scene and ask what’s going on.
Jimmy tells the officers that Leonard stole his wallet, but Leonard insists that he didn’t. As the police start to search Leonard, a woman named Natalie comes out of a nearby store and demands to know what’s happening. She tells the officers that she knows Leonard and vouches for his character.
After a brief chat with Natalie, the officers let Leonard go, and Jimmy disappears into the crowd. Natalie apologizes for the inconvenience and offers to buy Leonard a cup of coffee. As they walk, they discuss their past and Leonard’s condition. Natalie is intrigued by Leonard’s story, and she offers to help him find his wife’s killer.
Leonard is hesitant at first, but Natalie convinces him that she can help. They exchange numbers before going their separate ways, and Leonard is left with a sense of hope that he might finally be able to close the chapter on his wife’s murder.
INT. LEONARD’S MOTEL ROOM – DAY
Leonard jolts awake, startled by the sound of his own voice. He sits up in bed, holding his head, as he tries to make sense of what just happened.
Leonard looks around the room, taking in his surroundings. He notices the notes and photos scattered across the bed and floor.
I did this…why did I do this?
Leonard picks up a photo of his wife and stares at it for a moment. He feels a pain in his chest as he tries to remember her face.
I have to find her killer…I have to remember.
Leonard clutches the photo tightly and heads towards the bathroom. He stops in front of the mirror, looking at his reflection.
I can’t trust my memory…I have to rely on these notes…these tattoos.
Leonard rolls up his sleeve, revealing a tattoo of a license plate number on his arm.
(reading the tattoo)
Leonard heads towards the door, grabbing his coat and keys. As he opens the door, he looks back at the motel room one last time before stepping out.