Treatment for “The Wave” (a feature length film) © 2003 David Crimmins, 2933 Denbeigh Dr., Hatfield, PA 19440 215-362-5497 firstname.lastname@example.org and Robert Crimmins, 5012 Killens Pond Rd., Felton, DE 19943 302-284-0200 email@example.com
I Dr. Richard Kendrick, a brilliant but unfulfilled and ageing scientist is an important although thoroughly obscure member of a team working on the human genome project (HGP). One of his research assistants, Prakash, describes HGP as more accounting than science and has obtained grants for a few experiments loosely related to his sequencing assignments that he finds more interesting. Prakash e-mails Kendrick about a combination of genetic treatments and natural mutations in a population of mice that promises to achieve the affect heʼs been seeking. He hopes similar treatments in humans will cure or at least arrest the affects of Alzheimer Disease and several other maladies of the brain and nervous system. Kendrick has worked in advanced research for forty years and the sort of breakthrough his young assistant is suggesting rarely occur, and theyʼre never the result of minor grants administered by young graduate assistants from the University of Pune, India. Despite his certainty that subsequent work will prove Prakash wrong, Dr. Kendrick allows Prakash to describe his latest results over lunch the day after Kendrick received the e-mail. The explanation takes place in a break room at their laboratory and as Prakash excitedly, and to Kendrickʼs eye, naively, offers details about the mice, their treatments and the states of the mutations of their mitochondrial DNA, a television in a corner of the room is playing a series of commercials, among them an unusually compelling public service announcement about conserving natural resources. The production value is extremely high. Kendrick can easily concentrate on Prakash and the television at once and the p.s.a. is more interesting then his Indian friend pacing and gesturing in front of it. Prakash continues and Kendrick politely offers an occasional response or question until a news break comes on and a woman in the segment completely distracts the older man. Prakash stops too and turns to the television, annoyed at the interruption. Kendrick is suddenly more interested in Prakash than heʼd been, and puzzled. After a moment, in which he seems to realize something, he asks Prakash about a detail of the mitochondria. Prakash answers him and Kendrick continues the line of questioning but then remembers an appointment, tells Pakash he has to leave and orders him to compile a report on a certain aspect of his data and to have it ready by the following day. But Prakash doesnʼt return the next day and twenty-four hours after his only absence from work in thirty months he is reported missing. Another two days pass before he calls Dr. Kendrick, apologizes for scaring everyone and explains there is a family crisis and he must return to India. II In Vatican City, on the plaza between the Vila of Pius the IV and The Academy of Sciences, Father Alexander Gott, Ph.D.. is on a cell phone. He is speaking to a New York Times reporter about the work he is doing to authenticate relics, restore
ancient objects and in refuting the possibility that miracles attributed to the Saints and to Jesus could have been natural phenomena. He tells him too that he is in the final stages of preparing a biographical database on the prophets and saints. “Every verifiable fact we know about them and every attributed act will be in one file.” Looking over the reporters shoulder in New York we learn from the research material on his desk and a conversation with an editor that the reporter knows Gott is holding back. A Catholic priest educated at Stanford and in Germany in physics and genetics, Gott is doing more for the Pope than what heʼs told them. Back in Rome Gott closes his phone, puts it in his pocket, and walks quickly to the Academy building, knowing, the reporter will be asking more questions. III Jerome Sakima, a full blooded Lenape Indian, is so ugly he is beautiful. His facial structure, dark skin and piercing black eyes present such a striking and imposing appearance that the German seated behind the desk is fascinated, even though he has known the man for a year and met with him in this office over a dozen times. The German, Oberman, is explaining the recent findings of National Human Genome Research Institute when Sakima loudly interrupts. “How soon!?”, he shouts as he smashes the desktop with his huge, open hand. The Indianʼs sudden fury startles Oberman, but he calmly continues. “Many years. Their research into your grandsonʼs condition may lead them to significant insights into ageing in general, but just as weʼve seen with the others, despite your support, that is their objective, not a cure for progeria.” “My support is what Iʼm here to talk about. Hire thirty more investigators as soon as this group is oriented and on the road and get those computers we talked about. The new programmers and analysts will be here by the end of the week and I want their equipment to be here by then.” Oberman refers to a schedule on his desk and without looking up says, “I knew you were at your daughters last week . . .” Sakima tosses two 5x7 photographs on the schedule, pictures of a four year old child in the early stages of Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome. They are frightening images of a young and beautiful mother holding what appears to be a smiling, tiny old man on her lap. “. . . and Iʼve already seen these. The computers are already here.” Realizing Oberman is no longer motivated by the huge salary and bonuses he has been receiving, Sakima softens, offers a thin smile, then leaves, moving quickly through a huge office suite filled with desks, white boards, computers and people, all dedicated to his obsession. Summary These are the characters that separately uncover aspects of the most important scientific discovery of all time that is also a profound evolutionary event. Kendrick, Gott and the wealthy Indian, Sakima, learn that immortals currently live on the Earth. A very few occur naturally and they have since homo sapiens evolved.
Recent discoveries in genetics and physics have made it possible for immortality to be a reality for anyone who undergoes the treatment and avoids fatal accidents. Sakima also discovers “The Infinity Group”, the organization that controls the secret. Having the secret makes The Infinity Group extremely powerful. They control governments and are behind The Human Genome Project, the environmental movement, assassinations and wars. Kendrick received the flash of insight when Prakash mentioned mitochondria. Contributing to it was the image of a women on the break room television who closely resembled someone with whom heʼd had an intense love affair twenty years before. The women on the news hadnʼt aged so it couldnʼt have been his lost love but the resemblance was remarkable and the image persists, causing him to continue to roll the insight over in his mind along with the memory of the woman, who Kendrick eventually locates. The hypothesis sparked by Prakashʼs experiment, his work on the genome sequence, the woman, and Prakashʼs disappearance and departure becomes an obsession with the sixty-two-year-old scientist as he realizes what his life has been and how these new discoveries could redeem him. What Kendrick, and at varying times others learn, is not a genetic treatment only. They also discover a substance in mitochondrial DNA that exists in rock and on the surface of the earth in random locations. Life is initiated, and propagated by this element which was formed in certain stars. A physical phenomena animates this material, producing the basis for DNA, which initiates the creation of species and ensures propagation. As the mathematics of the phenomena solidify in Kendrickʼs mind a model emerges in which a wave lifts the material off the inanimate surface of the universe. All living things exist on the wave. Everything that will live and all that has died exist on the surface in front of and behind the wave. The immortality treatment relies on knowledge of this material, its role in DNA, and the “life wave”. One of the discoveries is that the material is the most powerful material in the universe although the source of its power is not only unknown, it may be unknowable. There is no doubt, however, of its potency. Tiny amounts result in the creation of millions of species and trillions of individuals. The miniscule quantity in the cells of a single individual, Mitochondrail Eve, was enough to produce the human race. Mitochondrial Eve is a character in the story as well. This one woman who lived in Africa sometime around one-quarter million years ago, the common ancestor to everyone alive today, is a figure in the dreams of all those who undergo the treatment and all natural immortals. Prolonging life indefinitely requires a manipulation of the physical “wave” phenomena, and the material in a personʼs DNA. Tinkering with such a powerful material and its role in creation while placing the subject in a highly dynamic dimensional field is fraught with danger. Early failures produced instantaneous ageing, human spontaneous combustion and massive genitalia but these are nothing compared with what will happen if too many people achieve immortality. Scientists with the Infinity Group have learned the materialʼs role in the day-to-day lives of every living thing is sex drive and everything we do is a result of sexual energy. We may write music and invent calculus but those are the result of redirection of a tiny amount of an almost completely dormant force that is manifested in living things primarily as sex drive. One of the things that Kendrick and the others donʼt know, but the Infinity Group does, is that once the number of immortals exceeds a certain value a tipping point is reached, after which sex becomes a relentless compulsion and the only motivation, other than
survival, of every adult of the species. Extinction will follow but the last few generations will suffer in amazing ways. Sexually horrific scenes of the suffering mankind will endure when the power of the life substance is released are the Infinity Groupʼs inspiration in controlling the secret. Greatly complicating their efforts is this knowledge coupled with the fact that granting immortality is the source of their power. Prakash is one of those who accepts their offer. Kendrickʼs lost love, Amanda, is one of the very few people whose increased longevity is the result of natural coincidences but because she was born in 1941, she only became aware of her good fortune less than twenty years ago, when her youth didnʼt fade, even slightly. Shortly after Kendrick tracks her down, she becomes the connection between him and Father Gott. One problem an immortal has is friendships and other long term associations. They therefore are always searching for other immortals with whom to form relationships. Those that have lived the longest are usually successful because they have accumulated wealth and therefor have the resources needed to carry out a difficult search. (Compound interest is a wonderful thing when you can work toward retirement for five hundred years. So are coin collections.) Amanda broke off her affair with Kendrick when she realized he was ageing prematurely and she wasnʼt ageing at all. Ten years later an immortal who has survived since the last ice age found Amanda and filled her in on everything, including insights into the meaning of life and the importance of history that only a twelve-thousand-year-old man could have. (He loves the Mel Brooks bit, recites it word for word, and does so in Brooksʼ voice.) The ancient one has kept close tabs on the Catholic Church for a very long time and close associations with the New York Times since the nineteen-twenties. He knows all about the priestʼs efforts and he shares what he knows with Amanda and Kendrick because he believes if Kendrick and Gott get together they may be able to answer questions that he has asked for a very long time. The scientist priest has discovered that the saints and prophets have certain obscure things in common such as character traits and numbers of siblings. He finds statistical comparisons that warrant analysis and he begins to doubt the miracles that actually did occur are supernatural. Eventually he concludes that the miracles are natural although an aspect of nature that baffles him. Scientist within the Infinity Group know more. Jesus and the others were children of parents with complementary genetic characteristics conceived during a particular solar cycle when the Earth was in a specific orbital position. The result was an affect upon their life material. Rather than rise and fall with the life wave, the saints, and others, ride it. The saints and prophets are among those who eventually fall behind the wave and die but others are “in the curl” and have lived many, in some cases, hundreds of generations. Perturbations of the wave that occur near those who have been identified as prophets and saints produce phenomena that have been interpreted as miracles. Jerome Sakima discovers everything. His network leads him to Kendrick, the priest, more than one immortal and a physicist who explains the life wave. In exchange for his silence the Infinity Group saves his grandson. An added benefit is the realization that the “harmony with nature” that his elderly relatives and Lenape tradition revere is an understanding of the real truth of manʼs origins and incredible good fortune we all have to spend one lifetime on the wave. The Lenape are a matriarchal society. His entire life the older women in Sakimaʼs family and tribe tried to articulate the meaning that they felt to their children but it was something that had to be felt to be understood and when life is lived apart from nature instincts are dulled. Although he respected what he thought were “the old ways” he never truly understood what it meant. In the final scene, Sakima dreams of Mitochondrial Eve who is with his mother and his daughter. All three touch his face and lift him out of his sleep.