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Breaking Tom

: When an engaging 17 year-old, orphaned by a flood, in 2018, on a Queensland 60,000 acre property is enslaved by a “kind” helper, he must fight back against land grabbers, the helper and a corrupt bank manager if he’s to survive. The bank manager is over friendly.

Tom Hartley, 17, athletic, handsome and vulnerable, is suddenly alone when his dad drowns in a flood and his mum takes off for the States. He is in sole charge of 60,000 acres of his Queensland property. He narrowly escapes being put into Care, when a “kind” ex-employee, Kit, tells the magistrate he will help Tom restore his flood wrecked property. The publican’s daughter, Sally, fancies Tom but says she’ll wait till he’s older. By degrees Kit takes over till he has Tom as his slave. He works him so hard, he lacks the energy to fight back.

The bank manager Granger is in league with Kit. They aim to break Tom and take over his property, keeping him as free labor. Kit makes Tom paint the flood damaged house on his own and drag a single blade plough to form a vegetable patch. He whips him into obedience. He hides Tom’s rifle and locks all doors. Land grabber Sawyer buys up the neighbours all round Tom’s property and then tries to force him into selling. Drought adds to his woes. Sawyer arrives at night with his henchman Joe. Tom wounds Joe and Kit wounds Sawyer, who falls and is trampled to death by stampeding cattle. Another attempt to take over Tom’s property fails when Tom wounds two of Sawyer’s men.

When the magistrate visits Tom’s property, Granger warns Kit he’s on the way. Kit hides Tom in a tree, from which he escapes just too late to stop the magistrate’s departing car. Kit convinces the magistrate that all is well and Tom is fencing in the hill country where no vehicle can reach. The magistrate agrees that Kit can run the property for a further six months. Kit sees off Tom’s Aboriginal friends at the point of a gun. Tom tries to run away but Kit catches him and drags him back to the house. Kit forces Tom to fight him, using army skills. Tom tricks Kit into following him on horseback and colliding with a low branch, unknown to Kit. Tom brings Kit to hospital from where he escapes, to join up with Granger. Granger disappears from the bank with all the money and shares certificates.

Tom traces Granger but is trapped. Kit kills Granger. Tom overcomes Kit. Tom repossesses his stolen money. Tom is welcomed home by his Aboriginal friend. Sally appears to claim her prize. Tom has evolved from a trusting, naïve boy to a hardened, resourceful man.

Script Excerpt
Written by:
Format:
Screenplay
Genres:
Budget:
Low
Starring Roles For:
a young Matt Damon
Ewan McGregor
In the Vein Of:
The Servant
Misery
Brokeback Mountain
Posted:
07/13/2018
Updated:
01/03/2021
Author Bio:
"Try And Stop Us" was a winner with Withoutabox. "Sam Fights Back" was a winner with ScriptPimp. “Phantom” has been part paid for. (The Fine Cotton Affair) I wrote and produced an 82 minute Teen Action movie, "Fight Back". It was on DVD with Netflix. Wescreenplay have recommended five of my scripts and Script Reader Pro, two. Edward Woodward wanted to be in it, having liked my script, but I could not afford him.

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