Starring: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Riz Ahmed, Bill Paxton, Ann Cusack, Kevin Rahm, Kathleen York, Eric Lange, Jonny Coyne, Michael Hyatt, Michael Papajohn
OUR RATING: ★★★★☆
Thriller drama written and directed by Dan Gilroy. The story centers on Louis Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal), an unsettling but ambitious and well-spoken young man living in L.A., desperately seeking work of any kind. After finding a group of freelance camera crews who film crashes, fires, murder and other mayhem, Louis muscles into the cut-throat, dangerous realm of “nightcrawling.” Louis quickly secures work with local TV news producer, Nina Romina (Rene Russo), and a naive assistant, Rick (Riz Ahmed), to help him. But as Louis becomes more successful he starts going to increasingly greater lengths to catch the carnage on footage.
Our Favorite Quotes:‘Good things come to those who work their asses off.’ - Louis Bloom (Nightcrawler) Click To Tweet ‘My motto is if you want to win the lottery, you have to make the money to buy a ticket.’ - Louis Bloom (Nightcrawler) Click To Tweet ‘Why you pursue something is equally as important as what you pursue.’ - Louis Bloom (Nightcrawler) Click To Tweet ‘What if my problem wasn't that I don't understand people but that I don't like them?’ - Louis Bloom (Nightcrawler) Click To Tweet
Best Quotes (Total Quotes: 100)
[first lines; Lou has broken into the train yard and trying to break off a chain-link fence when a car pulls up and the security guard approaches him]
Security Guard: What are you doing out here?
Louis Bloom: I’m lost.
Security Guard: This is a restricted area.
Louis Bloom: Oh, I didn’t know that. There’s no signs.
Security Guard: They’re everywhere. Let’s see some ID.
Louis Bloom: Why?
Security Guard: There’s a broken gate back there, and you’re trespassing.
Louis Bloom: Excuse me, sir, that gate was open and I was under the opinion that this was a detour.
Security Guard: Let me see the ID. Take it out.
Louis Bloom: What kind of uniform is that?
Security Guard: I’ll ask the fucking questions.
Louis Bloom: That’s a private outfit, huh? I tried to get one of those jobs, I like guarding things.
Security Guard: Really?
[Lou walks over to the guard and shows him his ID]
Louis Bloom: Here you go, sir.
[Lou notices the guard’s watch]
Louis Bloom: I think what must have happened is I just must have gotten turned around.
[Lou suddenly attacks the guard and steals his watch]
[Lou is at a scrapyard negotiating a price for material he’s stolen from the train yard]
Louis Bloom: I guesstimate that I have about fifty pounds of copper wire, a hundred pounds of chain-link fence and two manhole covers. The nice thick ones.
Scrapyard Owner: I’ll give fifty cents a pound for the wire, fifteen for the fence, and ten for the covers.
Louis Bloom: That’s below market value.
Scrapyard Owner: Market value? You know the cops came by asking about manhole covers?
Louis Bloom: I’d like to counter at a dollar a pound for the copper, thirty cents a pound for the fence, and twenty cents per for the covers.
Scrapyard Owner: Ah, sell them somewhere else.
Louis Bloom: I’d feel good at seventy-five, twenty-five, and fifteen.
Scrapyard Owner: I’m not negotiating with you.
Louis Bloom: I think we’re close.
Scrapyard Owner: I’m done.
[they enter into the scrapyard owner’s office]
Louis Bloom: I’m willing to take less to establish a business relationship. If that’s your last best offer, then I guess I accept.
Scrapyard Owner: Alright. Drive around back and unload them.
Louis Bloom: Excuse me, sir? I’m looking for a job. In fact, I’ve made up my mind to find a career that I can learn and grow into. Who am I? I’m a hard-worker, I set high goals and I’ve been told that I am persistent. Now, I’m not fooling myself, sir. Having been raised with the self-esteem movement so popular in schools, I used to expect my needs to be considered. But I know that today’s work culture no longer caters to the job loyalty that could be promised to earlier generations. What I believe, sir, is that good things come to those who work their asses off. And that people such as yourself, who reach the top of the mountain, didn’t just fall there. Excuse me, sir? I’m looking for a job. In fact, I’ve made up my mind to find a career that I can learn and grow into. Who am I? I’m a hard-worker, I set high goals and I’ve been told that I am persistent. Now, I’m not fooling myself, sir. Having been raised with the self-esteem movement so popular in schools, I used to expect my needs to be considered. But I know that today’s work culture no longer caters to the job loyalty that could be promised to earlier generations. What I believe, sir, is that good things come to those who work their asses off. And that people such as yourself, who reach the top of the mountain, didn’t just fall there. My motto is if you want to win the lottery, you have to make the money to buy a ticket.
[the scrapyard owner chuckles]
Louis Bloom: Did I say that I worked in a garage? So, what do you say? I could start tomorrow, or even why not tonight?
Scrapyard Owner: No.
[Lou stars to walk off but stops again]
Louis Bloom: How about an internship then? A lot of young people are taking unpaid positions to get a foot in the door. That’s something I’d be willing to do.
Scrapyard Owner: I’m not hiring a fucking thief.
[Lou smiles, nods his head and walks out of the office]
[after leaving the scrapyard Lou is driving along the road when a few cop cars pass him by, he pulls over to see what they’re investigating and sees a car has crashed and is on fire, a van pulls up and two guys with cameras head towards the accident]
Joe Loder: Let’s go. Let’s go! Let’s go!
Marcus Mayhem Video: We’re first!
Joe Loder: No shit! Get a shot on the other side!
Marcus Mayhem Video: Alright, alright.
[they go over to film the car involved in the accident]
Joe Loder: Get a shot inside the car. Go around and get inside the car! What the fuck am I paying you for?
[Lou watches them filming as the police pull out the people inside the car]
Cop #1: Yeah, it’s free. Get back, Loder. Get back!
Joe Loder: Yeah, I got it. I’m back, I’m back!
Cop #1: All units. EMS, just past exit 31.
[Lou watches them with fascination]
[after the incident Lou approaches Loder]
Louis Bloom: Excuse me. Will this be on television?
Joe Loder: Morning news. If it bleeds, it leads.
Louis Bloom: What channel?
Joe Loder: Whoever pays the most.
Louis Bloom: What do you get for something like this?
Joe Loder: Not nearly enough.
[Loder opens the back of his van and Lou notices all the expensive gear inside]
Louis Bloom: Enough to buy all that gear.
Joe Loder: Let me tell you something. It’s a flaming asshole of a job.
Louis Bloom: Can I ask you, are you currently hiring?
Joe Loder: Fuck, no.
Louis Bloom: Well, thank you for taking the time to discuss what you do. You’ve been very helpful.
[suddenly Loder hears something on his police radio]
Police Radio: Any Compton unit, Code Three response needed. Two-eleven in progress. 239 Rose Crest.
[Loder calls out to Marcus]
Joe Loder: Hey, we got a two-eleven on Rose Crest. Hurry your ass!
[Loder gets in the can and closes the door, Marcus rushes over to the van; to Lou]
Marcus Mayhem Video: Coming through.
[Marcus gets in the can and Lou watches as they drive off]
[the next morning Lou watches the morning news to see if the cover the footage shot by Loder]
Pat Harvey: Good morning, everyone. Thanks for joining us. I’m Pat Harvey.
Kent Shocknek: Hope your day’s getting off to a good start. I’m Kent Shocknek. An unclaimed Mega Millions ticket sold at a 7-Eleven in South San Diego is worth a whopping
two hundred and sixty-six million dollars. The question is, is it yours?
[Lou laughs to himself]
Pat Harvey: We’ll have the numbers, coming up.
[Lou switches the channel to another news show]
Sharon Tay: Evidence has police hunting for one of their own.
Rick Garcia: A fast-moving bank robber in Sylmar didn’t move fast enough. And we’ll explain how the FBI…
[Lou switches the channel to another morning news show]
Bill Seward: A landmark court decision, Lisa, has cyber-music fans singing the blues.
Female Anchor: Ouch! I may have to budget more for my music.
[Lou switches the channel again]
Actor in Advert: Closet space!
[Lou finally finds a news channel covering Loder’s footage]
KWLA Anchor Ben Waterman: A twisted metal, a shattered life. All of it caught on tape last night at the scene of a fiery one-car collision out on the one-ten. Melinda Flores of Yorba Linda. She was severely injured, but somehow managed to escape with her life, thanks to the bravery of a couple of CHP officers. The crash started a fire that then quickly consumed the entire vehicle.
KWLA Anchor Lisa Mays: And as we see in this dramatic video, CHP officers Mike Tilly and John Wall risked their lives to save the single mom. Flores was then transferred to St. Joseph’s Hospital in serious but stable condition after suffering smoke inhalation.
[Lou steals a bike from the beach and takes it to a pawn shop]
Pawn Shop Owner: I don’t know. I’ll give you five hundred.
Louis Bloom: This is a custom racing bicycle, sir. Designed for competitive road cycling. This bike has a light-weight, space-age carbon frame and handlebars positioned to put the rider in a more aerodynamic posture. It also has micro-shifters and thirty-seven gears, and weighs under six pounds. I won the Tour de Mexico on this bike.
Pawn Shop Owner: Seven hundred is as high as I’ll go.
Louis Bloom: It cost me over eight thousand new.
Pawn Shop Owner: Seven hundred.
Louis Bloom: Twenty-five hundred, and that’s giving it away.
Pawn Shop Owner: No bike’s got thirty-seven gears.
Louis Bloom: Two thousand.
Pawn Shop Owner: No.
Louis Bloom: Could I please speak to your boss please?
Pawn Shop Owner: I’m the owner.
Louis Bloom: How about eight hundred in store credit?
Pawn Shop Owner: What are you after?
Louis Bloom: A camcorder and a police scanner.
[Lou is sat in his car listening to the police scanner for any incidents in the area]
Police Radio: 7-X-76 Roger. David 1-0-9-9-9-6-5. Checking in C.I.C. 8-8-59. One, Lincoln, Adam, David, Young, John, one. R.O. not on file. Any northeast unit. 415 fight, 1-3-9-3-2 Tularosa Drive. Suspect number one, male, black. Suspect number two, male, black, juvenile. No further description. Code Two, incident 3-6-7-9. ID 11-25.
[Lou rushes over to the crime scene, pulls over and gets out to record with his camera]
Cop #1: Hey! Who the hell are you?
Louis Bloom: Freelance!
Cop #1: What are you doing?
Louis Bloom: Uh, filming for TV.
Cop #1: No. Back away.
Louis Bloom: Uh, what’s happening?
Cop #1: I said turn around and leave.
Louis Bloom: I’m fairly certain I’m allowed to film this.
Cop #1: Film what?
Louis Bloom: I don’t know. What’s happening?
Cop #1: Walk away, or get arrested for obstruction.
Louis Bloom: Yes, Officer.
Cop #1: Hurry up. Get out of here.
[Lou shows up at another incident where a young woman is being breathalyzed]
Cop #2: Blow, blow, blow. Almost. Almost.
Cop #2: Will you move that camera? Man, you better back up. Leave! Do you think I’m playing with you?
[Lou listens to his scanner again]
Police Radio: More street units, ambulance to 11. Just occurred. Western and Third. Suspect last seen northbound Western on foot. Code Three, incident 4-2-5-9. ID 7-0-3.
[Lou shows up at the incident and sees another cameraman there, he tries to get closer to the victim being attended to by the paramedics]
Paramedic #1: Alright, let’s get some blood pressure. He’s pretty shocked. Breathing is very shallow.
Paramedic #2: He’s got a second chest wound.
Paramedic #1: Put pressure on it.
Paramedic #2: We got it.
Paramedic #1: Strap it on the other side. You got a dressing on it?
Paramedic #2: Yeah.
Paramedic #1: GCS is 1-1-1, guys.
Paramedic #2: Give me pressure.
Paramedic #1: 90 over 60. No radial pulse.
Paramedic #2: We’re losing him. He’s bleeding out. Can you bag him? Let’s start bagging him. Keep on high flow, too.
Paramedic #1: Yep.
Paramedic #3: I got no pulse here.
Paramedic #1: Unresponsive.
[to Lou who’s filming the injured victim as closely as possible]
Cop #3: Get back. You! Get back! Get the fuck back, now!
[the cop pushes Lou back]
Louis Bloom: Okay. Shit. Alright.
Cop #3: Get back. A hundred feet back. Now!
[to the other cameraman]
Cop #3: You get back, too. One hundred feet.
[to Lou as they start backing away]
Ace Video Cameraman: Fucking asshole, you shut it down. I had a great fucking angle back there till you crowded in. Get the fuck home. There’s people trying to do their fucking job. Fucking asshole.
[Lou follows the cameraman and listens in as he makes a phone call to his employer]
Ace Video Cameraman: Yeah, it’s Ace Video. Your lead’s going to be at the First and Western. Yeah, you want to get there. It’s a shooting. Yeah, I got some great footage of a victim being treated. No, the LAPD hasn’t released it but a manager at a Walgreens says it’s a carjacking and the victim is the owner. He’s Asian and critical. Right. Well then, look, I got a sixty second cut with the manager and a neighbor. Five hundred. Well then, make me a deal. Four hundred. Three hundred. Alright, deal.
[he ends the call, as he goes to get into his van he sees Lou behind him]
Ace Video Cameraman: Are you fucking kidding me? Get out of here.
[Lou goes to the Channel 6 news station]
Linda: Okay, dip into graphics.
Frank Kruse: I don’t think that’s going to cover it.
Linda: Frank, it’s not my call.
[as Frank goes to walk off he almost runs into Lou]
Louis Bloom: Oh, excuse me.
[Frank walks off; to Linda]
Louis Bloom: Excuse me. I have video footage.
Linda: Uh, down the hall, to the right.
[Lou follows the directions and finds news director Nina Romina working with her editor]
Nina Romina: Okay. Put the neighbor here, and the kids with their mother by the door. You can get it back from 2:16.
Nina Romina: Then I want to lay in some nat-sound. Let’s loop the neighbor’s dog barking. And then try taking the, uh, the crying kid from B-roll and dropping that in the background.
Editor: Got it.
[looking at Lou]
Nina Romina: You my fill-in operator?
Louis Bloom: I don’t think so. I’m Lou Bloom. I have some footage for sale.
Nina Romina: A stringer?
Louis Bloom: What?
Nina Romina: Who do you work for?
Louis Bloom: At the moment, I work for myself.
Nina Romina: Okay. Well, see Frank out there, the way you came.
[Lou turns to leave; to the editor]
Nina Romina: Uh, what’s it timed to?
[as Lou is about to walk out of the room]
Nina Romina: What do you have?
Louis Bloom: Something I’m fairly certain you’ll be very excited about.
Nina Romina: What is it?
Louis Bloom: It’s a shooting. A man was shot. Several times, in fact. He’s lying on the ground, and he’s bleeding on the ground. I’d be surprised if he survived, honestly. He was shot during a carjacking.
Nina Romina: Western and First?
Louis Bloom: Yes, that’s right.
Nina Romina: Okay. Well, we’re getting that from Ace.
Louis Bloom: I was there. I was much closer to what happened.
[Lou laughs then turns to leave]
Nina Romina: Okay. Okay. Let’s see it.
[Lou plays he footage, which shows him filming himself as he gets his camera out]
Louis Bloom: You can fast forward through this. Keep going, keep going.
the footage stops to show when the cop he encountered when trying to film his first incident
Cop #1: Walk away, or I’ll arrest you for…
[the editor fast forwards again]
Louis Bloom: A minute-and-a-half in. There.
[the footage shows close shot of the man that was shot with the paramedics working on him]
Editor: Oh, fuck.
[Nina calls Frank]
Nina Romina: I need you to see something.
[as they watch the footage Frank enters the room]
Frank Kruse: Yeah?
Nina Romina: Lou Bloom. Frank Kruse, our assignment editor.
[Lou and Frank shake hands; to her editor]
Nina Romina: Play it back.
[to Frank as they watch Lou’s footage]
Nina Romina: That’s the lead. I want to break it up and do a wrap-around from the scene. I want a walking stand-up, teaser at five, repeat on the half and I want the copy to start with a warning.
Frank Kruse: You’re going to show this?
Nina Romina: With a warning.
Frank Kruse: It’s excessive.
Nina Romina: We should have packages like this every day.
Frank Kruse: People are eating breakfast.
Nina Romina: And they’ll talk about it at work. Tie it in with the carjacking last month in Glendale, and the other one, the van in Palms. When was that? In March?
Editor: March, yeah.
[Frank looks at Lou for a moment]
Nina Romina: It’s a carjacking crime wave. That’s the banner. Call the victim’s family, get a quote, mic it. You know what to do.
Frank Kruse: Yeah.
[Frank, not looking happy, turns and leaves; to Lou]
Nina Romina: How much?
Louis Bloom: I’m selling this particular piece for one thousand.
Nina Romina: Not even close. This late, you have nowhere else to go. And the quality’s for shit. I’ll give you two-fifty, that’s the most I’ll do. Now, let’s get you paid.
[as Lou waits Nina brings him his check]
Nina Romina: Here you go. Buy yourself some better equipment, a directional mic, and get interviews when you can. You have a good eye.
Louis Bloom: Thank you. I’m just beginning, so praise from someone such as yourself, well, you can imagine that it means quite a lot.
Nina Romina: Well, I’ll help in any way I can. And, of course, you can help me by calling us first. I want you to contact me when you have something.
Louis Bloom: Something like this.
Nina Romina: That’s right.
Louis Bloom: Bloody.
Nina Romina: Well, that’s only part of it. We like crime, but not all crime. Carjacking in Compton, for example. That isn’t news, now is it? We find our viewers are more interested in urban crime creeping into the suburbs. What that means is a victim, or victims, preferably well-off and white, injured at the hands of the poor or a minority.
Louis Bloom: Just crime.
Nina Romina: No. Accidents play. Cars, buses, trains, planes, fires, suicides.
Louis Bloom: But bloody.
Nina Romina: Well, graphic. The best and clearest way that I can phrase it to you, Lou, to capture the spirit of what we air, is think of our newscast as a screaming woman running down the street with her throat cut.
Louis Bloom: I understand. I’m a very, very quick learner. You will be seeing me again.
Nina Romina: I believe you.
[Lou watches the news in his apartment the next morning to see how his footage was used]
KWLA Anchor Ben Waterman: Live from the KWLA broadcast center in Los Angeles. This is KWLA 6 News at 6:00 a.m. Coverage you can count on.
KWLA Anchor Lisa Mays: A tragic drug store visit to help his ailing wife claimed the life of a loving husband last night near Hancock Park. Reporting from the scene is Ron De La Cruz.
Reporter Ron De La Cruz: An act of kindness turned into a savage deadly attack just outside this market on Western and First around 2:00 a.m. when sixty-eight year old Richard Cho of Mar Vista was walking towards his car with a prescription for his sick wife when he was confronted right here by a man with a 9mm handgun police believe wanted to take his vehicle. The vicious tragedy and senselessness of the brutal shooting as well as the victim’s final moments were all caught in graphic video which we are about to show. Viewer discretion is advised.
[they start showing Lou’s footage]
Reporter Ron De La Cruz: Paramedics worked feverishly to save the life of Richard Cho. But despite heroic efforts, the husband and father of three, was pronounced dead at Good Samaritan Hospital. Alarmingly, this is the third violent carjacking in the area in recent months. And residents here are growing concerned as police are still without any leads. This is Ron De La Cruz, reporting live.
[as Lou listens to the police scanner he looks up police code definitions on the internet and makes notes; later Lou is sat at diner when a young man goes over to meet him]
Rick: Hey. I’m sorry I’m late.
Louis Bloom: Are you Richard?
Rick: Uh, Rick.
Louis Bloom: I’m Louis Bloom.
Rick: Hey, Lou.
[Rick shakes Lou’s hand]
Louis Bloom: Louis. Sit down.
[Rick sits next to him]
Louis Bloom: The situation is that I lost an employee, and I’m interviewing for a replacement.
Rick: Okay. Uh, the ad didn’t say what the job was.
Louis Bloom: It’s a fine opportunity for some lucky someone.
Louis Bloom: I’d like to know about your prior employment and hear, in your own words, what you learned from each position.
Rick: My old jobs? I did landscaping for a couple months. Uh, like, mow, blow, and go. You know? Uh, I learned that I had hay fever, so I quit.
Louis Bloom: Other jobs?
Rick: I don’t know. Like, a week here, a week there.
Louis Bloom: Why hire you? Sell yourself. Alright?
Louis Bloom: Go.
Rick: Okay. Uh, well, I’m Rick. Of course. Uh, I took three buses to get here. I finished high school. I need a job. I’ll do pretty much anything. That’s me. Hire Rick. So…
Louis Bloom: Hmm. What’s your address, Richard?
Rick: I don’t have one. Not a permanent one. I mean, right now.
Louis Bloom: You’re homeless.
Rick: I was for a while.
Louis Bloom: You trick.
Rick: Work the street? No.
Louis Bloom: Wasn’t a question.
Rick: I’m straight.
Louis Bloom: Plenty of straight guys trick.
Louis Bloom: Do you have a driver’s license?
Louis Bloom: Do you know Los Angeles?
Rick: Yeah. I grew up all around here.
Louis Bloom: Can you start tonight?
Rick: Doing what?
Louis Bloom: I run a successful TV news business. We film breaking stories. Maybe you saw my item this morning of a fatal carjacking.
Rick: No. I mean I don’t have a TV, but that sounds cool.
Louis Bloom: Do you have a cellphone?
[Rick laughs and Lou joins in]
Louis Bloom: Does it have GPS?
Rick: Yes, it does. Yeah.
[Rick takes out his phone to show him]
Louis Bloom: Congratulations. You’re hired.
[Rick looks pleasantly surprised]
Louis Bloom: Your job will be to listen to the emergency radio, learn police codes, help navigate, and watch the car.
Rick: Okay. And what does it pay?
Louis Bloom: It’s an internship.
Rick: Man, I, uh, I can’t do that. I need money.
Louis Bloom: I’m giving you a chance to explore career options and get insight into my organization. It’s not at all unusual for me to make full-time job offers to my interns.
Rick: No, I know. I just, I need, I got to get paid, like, something at least, you know?
Louis Bloom: I’ll give you thirty dollars cash per night.
Rick: Okay. Okay. Thank you. Thanks.
[Rick extends his hand and shakes Lou’s hand]
[Lou and Rick are sat in the car listening to the Police scanner]
Police Radio: 4-A-27 at Main and Washington, requesting Code Ten for one.
Police Radio: Calling back stand-by. 4-A-27, go ahead.
Louis Bloom: 4-A-27 is requesting a Code Ten to clear the frequency for warrant information.
Police Radio: 4-A-1, prowler complaint, Sixth and Rampart. Female Hispanic wearing a blue shirt. Code 2, incident 2156, RD 2-35.
Louis Bloom: Code Two is “Respond immediately, no lights and sirens.” And Code Three is?
Rick: With the lights and sirens on.
Louis Bloom: Very good.
Police Radio: 2-A-1 responding. Sixth and Rampart, Code Two.
Rick: So, should we go?
Louis Bloom: No. We want victims and not the kind that live on Sixth and Rampart.
[couple of hours later, Rick is standing outside the car as Lou is sat in the car still listening to the scanner]
Police Radio: Any Van Nuys unit, 415 man. 7227 Van Nuys Boulevard at the Big King Market. Inside the location, the suspect is a male Hispanic wearing an orange construction vest and blue jeans. In custody with security guards.
Rick: I’m going to get some water. You want anything?
Louis Bloom: No, thank you.
[Rick walks off]
Police Radio: Rampart units, domestic violence, restraining order violation.
[later that night Lou and Rick are still listening to the police radio as Lou is sat on the car roof]
Police Radio: Suspect last seen on foot on Fifth Street towards Virgil.
[some time later they continue to listen to the police radio]
Police Radio: Structure fire. Station 58. Engine 58. Task force 58, task force 43. Engine 43. Battalion 10. 1642 Rincon Avenue…
[calling out to Rick]
Louis Bloom: Structure fire!
[Rick gets into the car]
Police Radio: Engine 58 on scene. 1642 Rincon Avenue.
Louis Bloom: Seat belt. Seat belt. Seat belt.
[Rick drives off]
[as Lou drives really fast]
Louis Bloom: Where are we going?
[Rick looks nervously at his phone]
Rick: Uh, we’re taking the next right coming up. Slow down, man.
[Lou suddenly takes a sharp corner]
Rick: That’s too fast!
Louis Bloom: Talk to me, Richard. Talk to me, Richard. What next?
Rick: Uh, next left, coming up.
[Lou swerves into the next lane]
Louis Bloom: I need more warning next time. Where are we going? Talk to me! What’s next?
Rick: Okay. Keeping on this five, no, six blocks. Then a right.
Louis Bloom: On what?!
Rick: I made a mistake! It’s a right five blocks back!
[Lou looks at him and stares at him coldly]
Rick: It’s just five blocks.
[they arrive at the scene late, Lou goes over to Loder who’s been filming the incident]
Louis Bloom: Did they bring him out?
Joe Loder: Ambulance left two minutes ago. You’re a lifetime too late.
[as he walks away]
Joe Loder: Hey, nice camera!
[Lou watches as another freelance cameraman leaves the scene]
Freelancer: On to the next.
[Lou turns and walks back towards his car where Rick is waiting]
Louis Bloom: I bet I wasted five dollars of gas just getting here or don’t you think that’s a lot of money?
Rick: No, I’m sorry. I couldn’t see the screen, you were driving so fast.
Louis Bloom: Okay, first of all, Richard, don’t answer me by telling me a problem. I have enough of those already. Bring me a solution, and then we can make a decision together.
Rick: Okay. Maybe if you didn’t rush me.
Louis Bloom: Don’t rush you. Okay. I can use that. See, Rick, they’ve done studies and they found that in any system that relies on cooperation from a school of fish, say, or even a professional hockey team, for example, these experts have identified communication as the number one single key to success.
[they get into the car]
[as Lou drives the car]
Louis Bloom: You know what fear stands for?
Louis Bloom: “False Evidence Appearing Real.”
Rick: You’re going really fucking fast, dude.
Louis Bloom: Get out of your head, Rick. It’s a bad neighborhood. Now, when you get a chance, I’d like to know where we’re going.
[Rick looks at his phone]
Rick: Uh, left on Third. Six blocks.
[Lou arrives at the destination, stops the car and gets out]
Louis Bloom: Find a more appropriate place to park the car, and don’t get blocked in.
[Lou walks over towards where the police have gathered outside a suburban house and starts filming, he goes over to a neighbor watching the scene]
Louis Bloom: Sir, what’s going on?
Neighbor: Who the fuck are you?
[Lou walks over to another neighbor watching the scene]
Louis Bloom: TV news. What happened?
Female Neighbor: It was a shooting. I told the cops that he was waving a gun last week, but they didn’t fucking care.
Louis Bloom: Uh, can you try one more time without swearing?
Female Neighbor: I’m not doing it again.
Louis Bloom: Yeah, but this is for, this is for TV.
Female Neighbor: Yeah? I don’t have a TV.
[she walks off]
[Lou tries to get closer to the house and sees another freelance cameraman]
Freelancer: It’s over. Shot the place to shit.
[the cameraman leaves]
Cop: Alright, guys, pack it up. Let’s move it out.
[Lou sees a couple outside the house talking to the police with the woman holding her baby, Lou then sneaks into the house through the back and into the kitchen where he rearranges pictures on the fridge to focus on the bullet holes, he notices some mail on the table and takes one]
[Lou shows the footage to Nina and Frank]
Nina Romina: Great shot. Oh, that’s fantastic. Oh, that’s a great piece of tape.
Frank Kruse: You didn’t get an interview with the couple?
Louis Bloom: I have footage of them. I have an interview with a neighbor. She curses, but you can cut that out.
Frank Kruse: How did you get inside the house?
Louis Bloom: The door was open.
Frank Kruse: They allowed you?
Louis Bloom: Well I heard somebody yell to come in, and when nobody was inside, I left.
Frank Kruse: And the only shot of the couple is through a window?
Louis Bloom: The police were shutting it down.
Frank Kruse: Well, I don’t like it.
Nina Romina: Like what?
Frank Kruse: The footage looks like he broke in. There’s no close-up of the homeowners and he’s giving us their name off a piece of private correspondence.
Louis Bloom: Excuse me, that’s junk mail.
Frank Kruse: Well, I have a problem with that!
Nina Romina: We’ll knock out a killer package.
Frank Kruse: This is my job.
Nina Romina: No! Your job is writing the tweet of the day. And getting Deb to turn sideways during the weather forecast. We’re running it.
[as Lou and Nina walk onto the news set]
Louis Bloom: I like how you handled Frank. You didn’t soften the truth or dilute it. I think being clear with your objectives is more important than trying to present your ideas in a non-confrontational manner.
Nina Romina: Do you have experience in an office?
Louis Bloom: Myself? Not presently, no.
Nina Romina: Where did you get all that?
Louis Bloom: I study a lot online.
Nina Romina: Yeah? Like what?
Louis Bloom: All sorts of things, actually. I’m on my computer all day. I haven’t had what you’d call much of a formal education, but you can find most anything if you look hard enough. Last year, I took an online business course, for example. And I learned that you have to have a business plan before starting a business, and that why you pursue something is equally as important as what you pursue. The site advised you to answer the following question before you decide where to focus your abilities. The question was “What do I love to do?” The site suggested making a list of your strengths and weaknesses. What am I good at? What am I not good at? Maybe I want to strengthen and develop knowledge about the things I’m already good at. Maybe I want to strengthen my weaknesses. I recently remade my list. And I’m thinking that television news might just be something I love as well as something I happen to be good at.
[referring to the large LA backdrop behind the news desk]
Louis Bloom: On TV, it looks so real.
Nina Romina: Yes, it does. Well, I have a show to do. Your check’s at the desk. Outstanding work, Lou. Really, just great.
[she shakes Lou’s hand]
Louis Bloom: Thanks, Nina. That means an awful lot.
Nina Romina: Okay.
[Nina turns and walks off, Lou goes over to the anchor’s chair, sits and looks into the camera]
[the next morning Lou watches the morning news on TV in his apartment]
Reporter Deena Rain: It’s every parent’s nightmare. Imagine singing a lullaby to your infant and tucking them into bed and then having to shield them as a barrage of high-caliber bullets literally blast into your home.
[they show Lou’s crime scene footage]
Reporter Deena Rain: For the Cahills of Echo Park, that fear became a terrifying reality when an adjacent house became the setting for a scene right out of the Wild West.
[Lou saves the news broadcast on his computer under the name “Horror in Echo Park”; we see Lou getting more and more crime scene footage and saving the news broadcasts on his computer]
[Lou is wiping the windshield of his brand new car as Rick fills the tank and gets back into the car]
Louis Bloom: Rick, I’m very pleased with how you progressed. You’re doing a great job. However, you just spilled gasoline on my car which will eat the paint. I need you tighten up a bit on this. Because if you fill it like that again, I will terminate you immediately, I promise you.
[later Lou is driving the car, we see he’s got new scanners/radio on the dash, he stops at the red light and Rick looks across the street]
Rick: “Bed, Bath & Beyond.” Oh, that’s a good store. Making peace with what you don’t have, that’s what it’s all about. Living with what you ain’t got, right? Don’t you think?
[just then the police radio interrupts them]
Police Radio: Traffic units, ambulance traffic, Benedict Canyon. Overturned vehicle with injuries.
Louis Bloom: Crash with injuries. Good neighborhood.
[Lou slams his foot on the gas and runs the red light]
[Lou, with his new camera, films a witness at the crash scene who’s talking into his phone]
Louis Bloom: TV news. What happened?
Freaked Motorist: I think it was a head-on collision, and there’s a guy who’s dead over there. There’s a woman…
Louis Bloom: Did you see what happened?
[the man continues to talk into his phone]
Freaked Motorist: Am I supposed to help? I didn’t see, I came after.
Louis Bloom: Can you tell me exactly what happened?
Freaked Motorist: Will you get the camera out of my face?! Get it out! I’m trying to talk to 911!
[the man turns away from Lou and continues to talk on the phone]
Freaked Motorist: No, it’s at… The guy is down.
[Lou goes over the crash scene, he stars filming but then decides to move the body closer to the crashed car and starts filming before the police arrives and close off the area, Loder watches in frustration as Lou calmly walks offs]
Joe Loder: Son of a bitch. Fuck this.
[Lou waits on the news set as Nina brings him his check]
Nina Romina: Here you go.
Louis Bloom: Ben Waterman wears the same gold tie on Fridays.
Nina Romina: We’re leading with it. That’s your third start this week.
Louis Bloom: I’m focusing on framing. A proper frame not only draws the eye into a picture but keeps it there longer, dissolving the barrier between the subject and the outside of the frame.
Nina Romina: Is that blood on your shirt?
Louis Bloom: I don’t think so. You know, I recently heard of a Mexican restaurant called Cabanita. Have you heard of it?
Nina Romina: It’s also on your sleeve.
[Lou looks down a his sleeve]
Louis Bloom: Oh, I didn’t see that.
[looks back a Nina]
Louis Bloom: What I’m asking is, do you like Mexican food, Nina?
Nina Romina: Yes.
Louis Bloom: Cabanita has been called “an authentic taste of Mexico City.” Do you want to go with me? I think we could have fun together.
Nina Romina: Thanks, but I’m busy.
Louis Bloom: Saturday is your night off, isn’t it?
Nina Romina: I have a rule, Lou. I don’t date people I work with. And I’m twice your age.
Louis Bloom: I like older women. Besides, I don’t work with you. You’re someone I sell to.
Nina Romina: And I don’t want to fuck that up.
Louis Bloom: What if by saying no you fuck it up?
Nina Romina: Is that what you’re saying?
Louis Bloom: I didn’t say that.
Nina Romina: Well, I don’t know what to say.
[Lou and Nina watch as the news anchors are being filmed on set]
KWLA Anchor Lisa Mays: Good morning. Thank you for joining us. I’m Lisa Mays.
KWLA Anchor Ben Waterman: And I’m Ben Waterman. First up on This Morning on KWLA News, a horrible car crash over in Benedict Canyon. It’s claimed the life now of one man. Severely injured a young woman.
[Loder calls out to Lou from his van]
Joe Loder: Hey, Lou! Hey, man. Joe Loder, Mayhem.
[he gets out of his van and goes over to Lou]
Joe Loder: Great get tonight. They were closing it down by the time we showed up.
Louis Bloom: Were you waiting for me out here?
Joe Loder: No, I was driving by and I saw your car. You’re not dropping your shit off, are you? Nobody does that. You need an air card if you want to be in the game. Import the video to your laptop. Cut the video. Upload to your FTP site and notify stations you got something for sale. Boom, boom, boom! Otherwise, it’s a nice ride.
[Lou look at him for a moment]
Joe Loder: Listen, man, you got a good run going but there’s valleys out there. Take it from me. I’ve been nightcrawling fourteen years. You heard I’m adding a second van?
Louis Bloom: No, I didn’t hear that.
Joe Loder: going to be a game changer. Cutting my on-scene time in half. I’m setting up a dedicated dispatch, too. No more listening and driving. That’s for suckers. You like the Canon 305s?
Louis Bloom: Never used one.
Joe Loder: Six thou a piece. 2.4 megapixels. Night vision. Eighteen to one zoom. I got one of those puppies with your name on it.
Louis Bloom: I have a camera.
Joe Loder: I want you running my second van. Two crews. Half the area to cover. Now, I know what you’re thinking. Half the money, right? You should be thinking, twice the sales. Because we’re going to be the first at every scene. Why compete when we can work together? You can share my press cards. Puppy dog off my police connections. This is the big move,
the next level. We can corner this whole thing. I’m talking about putting some heavy digits in our pocket, brah.
Louis Bloom: Thank you for offering me the position but working for myself is more in line with my skills and career goals.
[Lou starts to walk off]
Joe Loder: Take a few days to think about it.
Louis Bloom: No. You’ll need to hire someone else, and I don’t want to hold up the process.
Joe Loder: You want to be on the inside of this, man because I’m going to be tag-teaming every call.
Louis Bloom: You keep talking like it’s something that I may be interested in, but I’m not.
Joe Loder: You don’t even understand the offer. If you did, you’d be fucking sucking my dick! You’d be asking me questions. What does this mean? What does that mean?
Louis Bloom: I feel like grabbing you by your ears right now and screaming in your face, “I’m not fucking interested.” Instead, I’m going to drive home and do some accounting.
[Lou turns goes to get into car]
Joe Loder: Fuck you! Twerp.
[Nina is at the Mexican restaurant with]
Nina Romina: I didn’t wake up until 5:00. My body is so off, I feel like it’s time for breakfast.
Louis Bloom: I bet you’re beautiful any time of the day. In fact, I’d say you’re much prettier than Lisa Mays.
Louis Bloom: I like the dark makeup on your eyes. I also like the way you smell.
Nina Romina: So, where are you from, Lou?
Louis Bloom: The north end of the Valley. Some of the calls sometimes take me over there, but nobody I know still lives out there. You’re from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Nina Romina: How did you know that?
Louis Bloom: It’s online. Everything about you is online. Not everything, but definitely a lot. I’ve watched all the videos from when you were a reporter. I’m sure you look at those, of course.
Nina Romina: No. No, God, no. Not without a drink in my hand.
Louis Bloom: I watch my work all the time.
Nina Romina: Yeah? Do you want to become a reporter?
Louis Bloom: No.
Nina Romina: Most of you guys want air time.
Louis Bloom: Not me. I want to be the guy that owns the station that owns the camera. The business is going well, but in order to grow to the next level, I need to stay one step ahead of my competition and take risks. I also need financial support to implement expansion.
Louis Bloom: Would you like another margarita?
Nina Romina: One’s enough.
Louis Bloom: Thanks for coming out to talk. The place I’m in now is that I want a relationship with someone I can team up with and share, like we share, the same job and hours and whatnot. I could go down a laundry list, but you get the idea.
Nina Romina: Yes. Well, I hope you find someone.
Louis Bloom: Here’s the thing about that, Nina. I’m quite certain I already have.
Nina Romina: Okay, let me put this politely. I only came out to dinner with you, Lou, purely as a professional courtesy.
Louis Bloom: Thank you. Because I don’t think it’s any secret that I’ve single-handedly raised the unit price of your ratings book.
Nina Romina: Our ratings book price? Woh!
Louis Bloom: I’m a very fast learner. We had a conversation where I specifically mentioned that. Do you remember that? Well, do you?
Nina Romina: Yes.
Louis Bloom: I recently learned, for instance, that most Americans watch local news to stay informed. I also learned that the average half-hour of Los Angeles television news packs all of its local government coverage including law enforcement, budget, transportation, education and immigration into twenty-two seconds. Local crime stories, however, not only usually led the news but filled fourteen times the broadcast, averaging five minutes and seven seconds. KWLA relies heavily on such stories. With Los Angeles crime rates going down, I think that makes items like mine particularly valuable. Like rare animals.
Louis Bloom: I can only imagine that your needs will increase during next month’s rating sweeps period.
Nina Romina: Ooh!
[Nina fans herself with her hand and laughs]
Nina Romina: Yeah. Well, we certainly appreciate what you do.
Louis Bloom: There’s certain good things about being alone. You have time to do the things you want do, like study and plan, but you can’t have dinners like this or be physical with a person. I mean, outside of flirtationship.
Nina Romina: Where are you going with this?
Louis Bloom: I want that. With you. Like you want to keep your job and your health insurance.
Nina Romina: Look, just for starters, I don’t need you to keep my fucking job.
Louis Bloom: You’re the news director on the vampire shift of the lowest-rated station in Los Angeles. We have what could be considered an almost-exclusive relationship. There are many other places I could go. I have to think that you are invested in this transaction.
[just then the waiter comes to their table with their food]
Waiter: Here you are.
[looking shocked by Lou’s confession Nina says quietly to herself]
Nina Romina: Wow.
Louis Bloom: Thank you.
Nina Romina: Where did you get the balls to even suggest something like this?
Louis Bloom: We’re still talking.
Nina Romina: No, there’s nothing more to say.
Louis Bloom: You can leave.
[Nina looks at Lou for a moment as he calmly starts eating his food]
Nina Romina: Okay, look. You’ve done well. Okay? And we pay you well, very well. We always have. If you like, I could get you an exclusive retainer. That would be on top of your segment fees. I could maybe even get you a job at the station starting as a production assistant, so that you could learn the business from the inside. That’s where you said your interests lie.
Louis Bloom: Mm-hmm. You’re not listening, Nina. I happen to know that you haven’t stayed at one station for longer than two years at a time, and you’re coming up on two years soon. I can imagine that your contract is for that length of time. And that next month’s ratings directly affect that.
Nina Romina: So, you’re threatening that if I don’t…
Louis Bloom: I’m negotiating.
Nina Romina: You’re threatening to stop selling to me.
Louis Bloom: That’s your choice. The true price of any item is what somebody’s willing to pay for it. You want something, and I want you.
Nina Romina: To fuck you.
Louis Bloom: And as a friend.
Nina Romina: Jesus Christ, friends don’t pressure friends to fucking sleep with them.
Louis Bloom: Actually, that’s not true, Nina. Because as I’m sure you know, a friend is a gift you give yourself.
[Rick is giving directions to Lou as he drives to another incident]
Rick: Okay, a left on Roth, and then six blocks to the ramp.
Louis Bloom: You’re putting me on the 5?
Rick: Yeah, the 2 to the 5 and the 110 to the 10.
Louis Bloom: Did you read my traffic memo yesterday?
Rick: Did I read it? Yeah, I read it.
Louis Bloom: What did it say?
[Rick doesn’t reply]
Louis Bloom: It’s about the 5?
Rick: Okay, I looked at it. Okay? What?
Louis Bloom: Well, for one thing, it included that the 5 has floating construction in the fast lane for the next three weeks. So, given that, I expect you to put me on the 2 to the 101 to the 110 to the 10.
Rick: That’s half of one, six of the other.
Louis Bloom: It’s half dozen of one, six of the other. What I’d like you to do is admit that you didn’t read what you said you did. You know I’m a reasonable person, but nobody likes to be lied to!
Rick: Okay! When am I going to get my raise? That reasonable, right? You keep talking about this performance review. When is it going to happen? I mean, I’ve been out here two months already, busting my ass every night. I’m tired of your promises for more pay, man. I’m sleeping in a garage.
Louis Bloom: Rick, trying to leverage your salary in this economic environment is near impossible. Most firms have set starting wages. Ideally, you could leverage with other offers, but that’s just not the case in your situation right now.
[Lou turns he volume up on his police radio]
Police Radio: Test 498. Engine 91. North division. Battalion 12. Heavy rescue. 56. Air ops respond. Reported plane down. Whiteman Field, south of Foothill.
Louis Bloom: Reroute us to that.
We’re like twenty-two minutes from Foothill, and only five from a hit and run.
Louis Bloom: They’re rolling heavy rescue and an air ambulance. Get me there, please.
[Lou pulls up at the scene and gets out with the camera but is stopped by a police officer]
Cop: Not getting through here.
[Lou tries to go through at another spot but the police officer stops him]
Cop: Woh, woh, woh. It’s all over here, buddy. Turn it around, let’s go.
[to Rick as he tries to follow Lou]
Cop: You’re late.
[Lou notices Joe leaving the accident scene]
Joe Loder: Hey, brah! Five fatals. Come screaming out of the fucking sky. All lit up with the brush on fire. Mine. Exclusive. I’m banging! Oh, and my other van is in Carson, getting the jumper.
[Lou follows behind Joe as they walk towards their vehicles]
Joe Loder: You know, I was trying to hook you up, man. I was trying to teach you something. Welcome to the future, brah.
[Lou goes to the station and shows her the footage he’s shot for the night]
Nina Romina: A car crash. Well, none of this is going to knock anybody out. I can’t use any of this in my rundown. Is this it?
Louis Bloom: No, I have a stabbing in Corona.
Nina Romina: Where’s the plane crash at Foothill?
Louis Bloom: I don’t mind saying that I’m trying to bring you stories that happen here on the ground.
Nina Romina: Two has it. It’ll be their lead.
Louis Bloom: Well, I hope that works well for them. Now, let me show you the stabbing in Corona.
Nina Romina: I don’t give a goddamn about fucking Corona! You know how important this week is. This shit is fucking death to me!
Louis Bloom: I understand your frustration. I was just trying not to be too hard on myself.
Nina Romina: I sold you upstairs as some kind of fucking sweeps savior. And I’m leading with a goddamn stabbing, in Corona!
Louis Bloom: So, you want that, then?
Nina Romina: I want you to get in the goddamn game! I want something people can’t turn away from. I want what you fucking promised me!
[Nina walks out of the room]
[the next morning, Lou as the TV on Channel 2 news who’s leading with Loder’s footage of the previous evening’s accident]
Pat Harvey: Good morning, everyone. Thanks for joining us. I’m Pat Harvey.
Kent Shocknek: Hope your day’s getting off to a good start. I’m Kent Shocknek. We begin with a tragedy last night in the foothills of Santa Susana Pass where a private plane crashed with no survivors. CBS2 has obtained this exclusive video, and we want to remind you now that what you’re about to see is graphic, and viewer discretion is advised.
[Lou is in his bathroom, he screams and smashes the bathroom mirror in fury; later he goes to Loder’s house and cuts the brakes on his van]
[Lou is driving his car arguing with Rick over directions again]
Louis Bloom: Since when did Coldwater become faster than Laurel? Huh? What was the thinking there? I didn’t ask that to hear myself speak.
Rick: Because, you know, Coldwater only has six lights.
Louis Bloom: Yeah, but Laurel has places to pass. I can’t get around this person until Ventura.
Rick: It’s the same argument, man. I said this route. If you wanted to take Laurel, you should have said something.
Louis Bloom: I thought that you worked in other factors. If I didn’t think that you could do better, I wouldn’t ride you so hard about the routes. I think you know that, Rick. I think it may just be possible that I have a higher opinion of you than you have of yourself.
[suddenly Rick overtakes the car in front]
Rick: What the fuck? Goddamn it! Seriously? To get to a van crash on Moorpark? Who cares? What’s the rush? Why aren’t we at the rape at Griffith Park like everybody else?
[Lou accelerates the car]
Total Quotes: 100