The movie opens as our leads, BRYCE ADAI and ALLIE FOSTER, fire through traffic towards the upper crust building where Allie and her hardass janitor father, DUKE, live and work.
Bryce finally meets Duke who agrees to give him a job if he passes a physical challenge involving testing Bryce’s skill as a mechanic. If he passes the test he’ll give Bryce a job. If he fails he has to break up with Allie. This is when we discover that Bryce has had a rough childhood and isn’t so good with parental types or dealing with pressure. Luckily he passes and helps Duke build a secret project.
Bryce and Allie discover the secret project is a bomb and confront Duke. Duke reveals his extortion plot to get revenge on his landlord boss who screwed him in a business deal. Bryce tries to destroy the bomb. Bryce dials 911 but there’s a scuffle. Duke’s knocked out and the bomb is armed and ticking.
Detective MARITTE LAGA for the police special operations force responds to the 911 bomb call. She wants to search but the stuffy building manager, FRANCIS, thwarts her attempts.
Bryce and Allie try to break into Duke’s safe that has the defusal procedure to the bomb. Bryce builds a small bomb to open the safe but in the process they burn the procedure and have no choice but to disarm the bomb by hand.
Detective Laga convinces Francis to allow her and her team to do a routine inspection. She reveals that her last incident in the field resulted in a bomb going off and people dying. Francis becomes skeptical.
Bryce finds a way to crawl inside the refrigerator-sized bomb from the bottom but gets trapped. He teams up with Allie to cut the right wires to disarm the bomb. Unfortunately cutting the wires arms another bomb that’s the size of the entire room. They’re fucked.
The arming of the 2nd bomb automatically arms all the locks in the building. Francis and Laga go down to Duke's apartment to get him to troubleshoot the lock system. While down there, Laga learns about Duke's past friction with the building owner, Tanner, the death of his wife and his suicidal tendencies. She suspects Duke as the bomber.
Bryce comes up with one last ditch effort to try to cut the power source of the bomb with another targeted bomb who's blast would act like a knife. But there's a high probability that such a blast in the enclosed concrete room would kill them. They go forward anyway hoping that if they die then at least the bomb would disarm and the people in the building would live.
Just as Bryce and Allie light the fuse Laga bangs on the door. Laga tries to cut through the door to get them out but they're running out of time.
Their only chance is to revive Duke in the hopes that he can help them disarm the 2nd room-sized bomb. Duke reveals a risky method to disarm the bomb that involves running around the room and cutting wires in sequence but Bryce doesn’t trust him because he thinks Duke is still crazy. So Bryce must now decide if he should help the police cut the door open or join Duke and Allie in the risky bomb defusal plan. Time ticks down on their fate...
This movie is literally a ticking bomb movie. It’s about solving puzzles as your better half freaks out making it all the more difficult but you realize she needs to help get the job done. (completed script available upon request)
WRITER/DIRECTOR STATEMENT: WHY MAKE THIS MOVIE?
Walter Boholst (writer/director): "Detonate is a fun, kinetic, fast-paced action thriller that's a ticking bomb movie on acid racing at 100 mph."
"The two lead characters, BRYCE and ALLIE, are slacker millennials coasting through life adrift but in love with each other. Allie introduces Bryce to her dad, DUKE, who's the building janitor. After awkward introductions, the intimidating as hell Duke offers Bryce a job helping out with mechanical projects in his basement workshop."
"Bryce finds out the project he's been working on is a revenge bomb that Duke plans to use to extort the building's owner for 3 million dollars in retaliation for screwing Duke in a previous business deal gone wrong. Bryce tries to stop the plot but gets into a scuffle with Duke that leaves Duke unconscious. During the scuffle they all end up locked in the basement with the ticking bomb that's armed and counting down to apocalyse."
"Allie and Bryce strive to overcome their insecurities, fears and relationship drama as they unravel the puzzles of the booby traps. Every time they think they’ve solved a trap the solution triggers a new trap more difficult than the last one. At this cross-roads in their lives, they must throw away everything they know from their slow-paced care-free lives and make tough choices on pure adrenaline as hundreds of lives in the building above them hang in the balance."
"The bomb's booby traps are based on ones used in real-life bombs. These techniques were most famously deployed in the Harvey Casino bomb which the FBI called an “undefeatable” bomb. The bomb maker rolled 1000 lbs. of dynamite into the basement of the casino and built 8 booby traps into the bomb so that no matter what the bomb squad tried (drilling, tilting, flooding) it would set off the bomb."
PROPOSED MALE LEAD
BRYCE, 20's, is a confident mechanical wiz who's lost his way. He's the anti-model minority who's bounced from foster home to foster home in search of his purpose in life. He finally finds it in his girlfriend, Allie, and will do anything to keep her safe. He's used to running from his problems but there's nowhere to run when he's trapped with a bomb. (click on image to enlarge)
PROPOSED FEMALE LEAD
ALLIE, 20's, is a free spirit, carefree, conscientious and struggles with anxiety when faced with extreme stress. This does not help when a bomb is ticking down. (click on image to enlarge)
PROPOSED SUPPORTING MALE ACTOR
DUKE is a driven, bitter mastermind who would be spiraling downward out of control if it weren't for the love of his daughter, Allie. But is love enough to save him from his own mad vengeance? (click on image to enlarge)
- Ian Mcshain
- Jackie Earl Haley
- Rutger Hauer
- Chris Cooper
- Hugo Weaving
- Sharlto Copely
- Stephen Lang
- Mads Mikkelson
- Mickey Rourke
- Ron Pearlman
- Gary Busey
- Geoffrey Rush
- David Strathairn
- Brian Cox
- John Goodman
- Dennis Quaid
- Kenneth Branaugh
- Jon Hamm
- Alec Baldwin
- Kevin Bacon
PROPOSED SUPPORTING FEMALE ACTOR
DETECTIVE LAGA is tough as nails, sarcastic, witty, dry and to the point. She gets things done. But that doesn't mean that she's not haunted by past bomb incidents gone wrong. In fact, they may cause her to do more harm than good.
PROPOSED SUPPORTING MALE ACTOR
FRANCIS, the building manager, is an erudite, self-important, brown-nosing ball busting manager who'll stop at nothing to protect the reputation of his building and his own job. But when he's thrust into a precarious situation he has to come to grips between self-preservation and taking a chance on the instincts of Detective Laga.
PRODUCTION DESIGN, CAMERAWORK, LIGHTING
I intend to make the space a character whose walls seemingly close in as the pressures mount. (Examples: Crimson Tide, 12 Angry Men). The lighting will be harsh, reminiscent of noir films since this starts out as a 3-hander about mistrust in an enclosed space. As the story unfolds and the stakes heighten the lighting, the set and the camerawork turn chaotic and jumbled.
THE COLOR PALETTE
This movie is really man vs. machine. Blue and gray symbolize the stark reality of the bomb's steel and the concrete of the basement walls. They also symbolize Duke's coldness as the warmth is driven out of him to the point where he'd kill for revenge. The cold tones represent dark themes of authority, intimidation and fear but they're contrasted with the orange that symbolizes the humanity the characters must connect with to escape their predicament. (Examples: Top Gun, Terminator 2)
THE EDITING AND PACING
COMPARISON FILMS in the contained thriller genre
INSPIRATION FOR MARKETING ONE-SHEETS
We can play off of the iconography of destruction, revenge, young love, machines and madness depending on whom the marketing is tailored to. (click on image to enlarge)