An elderly immigrant moves to a new home on a quiet, suburban street. Will it be different this time or will he suffer the small minded bigotry that has dogged his entire life?
Was it not ever so? People fear that which they do not know.
Sadly, the endless list goes on and on:
Fear of flying, for plane newbies.
Fear of other cultures for those less travelled.
And if you’re a parochial parent, fear of that odd new neighbor who hangs a teddy bear off his porch eaves. Actually, that last one’s kinda weird. Still, all one has to really do is… ask.
With his deeper-than-it-seems short script Teddy Bear, writer Anthony Cawood demonstrates how stereotyping can result in tragic misunderstandings.
Bear’s simple plot reels in readers quick: a group of mollycoddling young moms find themselves biting their nails over the new arrival on their street – a mysterious stranger who moves in at night, and immediately hangs a teddy bear out to decorate. Alpha pack fuss-budget Janet is stridently loud – anyone who does must be a pedophile! Right?
Future discoveries heighten the cliques’ worries. It turns out the newcomer on the block is: A man. Very old. And a foreigner. All red flags – if one’s mind works that way.
One childless woman in Janet’s social circle (Pat) extends a timid olive branch to the new neighbor. After speaking to him briefly, Pat rules him to be… quirky but harmless. But the others aren’t convinced.
As usual, it’s Janet that who voices their dark concerns:
But what about the Teddy?
An unanswerable question. Who knows?
Before long, the situation rolls out of control. Especially when Janet’s son accidentally throws a ball into the new neighbor’s garden. He ventures over it to retrieve it – trespassing on the lawn.
Is Pat the sane one here? Or will Janet’s worst fears come true?
No matter which scenario plays out, Teddy Bear is a clever drama that uses everyday situations to assert its message: that judging someone before you get to know them leads to the worst kinds of risks….
Budget: Very low
About the reviewer: Hamish Porter is a writer who, if he was granted one wish, would ask for the skill of being able to write dialogue like Tarantino. Or maybe the ability to teleport. Nah, that’s nothing compared to the former. A lover of philosophy, he’s working on several shorts and a sporting comedy that can only be described as “quintessentially British”. If you want to contact him, he can be emailed: hamishdonaldp “AT” gmail.com. If you’d like to contact him and be subjected to incoherent ramblings, follow him on Twitter @HamishP95.
About the writer: I’m an award winning screenwriter from the UK with over 15 scripts produced, optioned and/or purchased. Outside of my screenwriting career, I’m also a published short story writer and movie reviewer. Links to my films and details of my scripts can be found at http://www.anthonycawood.co.uk.
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