Ben



Apperance: Life of Brian

Somehow still functioning.

High Light:

The Jail scene

(BRIAN wakes up with a smile on his face to find himself being dragged along a cell corridor by TWO GUARDS. The horrible figure of the JAILER spits at him and flings him into a dark damp cell, slamming the iron grate behind him and turning the key hollowly in the lock. BRIAN slumps to the floor. A voice comes out of the darkness behind him.)

BEN: You LUCKY bastard!
BRIAN: (spins around and peers into the gloom): Who's that?

(In the darkness BRIAN just makes out an emaciated figure, suspended on the wall, with his feet off the ground, by chains round his wrists. This is BEN.)

BEN: You lucky, lucky bastard.
BRIAN: What?
BEN: (with great bitterness): Proper little gaoler's pet, aren't we?
BRIAN: (ruffled) What do you mean?
BEN: You must have slipped him a few shekels, eh?
BRIAN: Slipped him a few shekels!? You saw him spit in my face!
BEN: Ohh! What wouldn't I give to be spat at in the face! I sometimes hang awake at nights dreaming of being spat in the face.
BRIAN: Well, it's not exactly friendly, is it? They had me in manacles ...
BEN: Manacles! Oooh.... (his eyes go quite dreamy) My idea of heaven is to be allowed to be put in manacles ... just for a few hours. They must think the sun shines out of your arse, sonny!
BRIAN: Listen! They beat me up before they threw me in here.
BEN: Oh yeah? The only day they don't beat me up is on my birthday.
BRIAN: Oh shut up.
BEN: Well, your type makes me sick! You come in here, you get treated like Royalty, and everyone outside thinks you're a bloody martyr.
BRIAN: Oh, lay off me ... I've had a hard time!
BEN: YOU'VE had a hard time! Listen, sonny! I've been here five years and they only hung me the right way up yesterday!
BRIAN: All right! All right!
BEN: I just wish I had half your luck. They must think you're Lord God Almighty!
BRIAN: What'll they do to me?
BEN: Oh, you'll probably get away with crucifixion.
BRIAN: Crucifixion!
BEN: Yeah, first offense.
BRIAN: Get away with crucifixion!
BEN: Best thing the Romans ever did for us.
BRIAN: (incredulous) What?
BEN: Oh yeah. If we didn't have crucifixion this country would be in a right bloody mess I tell you.
BRIAN: (who can stand it no longer) Guard!
BEN: Nail 'em up I say!
BRIAN: (dragging himself over to the door) Guard!
BEN: Nail some sense into them!
GUARD: (looking through the bars) What d'you want?
BRIAN: I want to be moved to another cell.

(GUARD spits in his face.)

BRIAN: Oh! (he recoils in helpless disgust)
BEN: Oh ... look at that! Bloody favouritism!
GUARD: Shut up, you!
BEN: Sorry! Sorry! (he lowers his voice) Now take my case. I've been here five years, and every night they take me down for ten minutes, then they hang me up again ... which I regard as very fair ... in view of what I done ... and if nothing else, it's taught me to respect the Romans, and it's taught me that you'll never get anywhere in life unless you're prepared to do a fair day's work for a fair day's pay ...
BRIAN: Oh ... Shut up!

(CENTURION approaches cell door with two soldiers, starts unlocking door)

CENT: Pilate wants to see you.
BRIAN: Me?
CENT: Come on.
BRIAN: Pilate? What does he want to see me for? CENT: I think he wants to know which way up you want to be crucified. (He laughs. The TWO SOLDIERS smirk. BEN laughs uproariously.) BEN: ... Nice one, centurion. Like it, like it.
CENT (to BEN): Shut up! (BRIAN is hustled out. The door slams.)
BEN: (to himself): Terrific race the Romans ... terrific.

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