Thursday, February 6, 2014

Case Study No. 1224: Staff of Unnamed Library (Puzzle To My Heart)

Puzzle To My Heart
"A puzzle-obsessed Stacks librarian discovers a series of codes in books that lead her to her one true love."

Turn up the volume, please! Made for my TFA 420 class. Check out the blog that documented the process at
Tags: alyssa ricigliano tfa 420 bsc student film student film puzzles puzzle librarian library solving mystery love story puzzle to my heart BSC TFA TFA college production puzzle to my heart tfa
Added: 2 years ago
From: BacklashSymphony
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I'm Not On A Horse

Julia Squilla
James Matias
Ryan Conner

Puzzle to My Heart

[scene opens in a college library, as a female student worker is sitting down and playing with a Rubik's Cube, when a male student worker walks up behind her]
SIMON: Hey, Cassandra.
SIMON: I have a patron request for you.
[he hands her a piece of paper, and she sighs]
CASSANDRA: Another one? That's like the third one today ...
SIMON: Someone's counting down to the end of their shift.
CASSANDRA: Well, my puzzle's can only keep me busy for so long.
[cut to a closeup of her Rubik's Cube, then Simon picks another one up off the table]
SIMON: I don't know how you finish these things. I can barely start 'em, let alone--
[she gets up and starts walking away (looking at the patron request and barely paying attention to him)]
CASSANDRA: I find 'em rather easy, actually. Um, I hafta go fill this out ... Can't keep the head patron waiting.
[she leaves, then he sits down and bangs his head on the table in frustration]
SIMON: Stupid, stupid! Of course she would find it easy!
[another male student worker walks up behind him and puts his hand on his shoulder]
NICK: Boy, have you got it bad ...
[he laughs, then sits down next to him]
NICK: Should'a said something funny. Chicks dig humor. Maybe she'd actually have a conversation with you, if you didn't screw it up everytime.
SIMON: Quit bustin' my balls, Nick ... You know I can't talk to the girl. It's bad enough that I hafta work with her four days a week.
NICK: Dude, you're higher up on the library chain than she is. Tell her you'll fire her if she doesn't go on a date with you.
SIMON: Oh yeah, that'll go over real well ...
NICK: Yeah, you're right. She'd probably punch you. You'd go out like a light.
SIMON: [pause] Remind me why we're friends again?
NICK: Because without me, you wouldn't have a girlfriend ... Oh right, you don't have a girlfriend.
SIMON: I want Cassandra, but she's just so unreachable. She always has her nose buried in one of those puzzles.
NICK: So you should write some sappy love note, or ... write some crap about your feelings in a crossword or something. Y'know what, I bet I could find a website that's already done it for you. Then you wouldn't have to do any work.
SIMON: It doesn't really work that--
CASSANDRA: [from off camera] What're you goons up to?
[cut to a shot of Cassandra standing behind them]
NICK: Oh, you know ... the usual. Just plotting to break into the Playboy Mansion.
[cut to Cassandra sitting on the floor in the stacks, trying to solve a logic puzzle instead of reshelving books]
[cut to another shot of Cassandra, as she notices Simon walking up, so she tries to hid the puzzle behind her back]
SIMON: Don't worry, I won't tell.
[she places the puzzle on a nearby bookcart]
CASSANDRA: Thanks. Um, you have a patron request for me?
SIMON: Not this time. I found something you might like to see.
[he hands her a copy of "The Onion Girl"]
SIMON: I found some writing inside that looks like a code. Maybe you can figure it out ...
CASSANDRA: Charles de Lint is one of my favorite authors, why would someone write in one of his books?
SIMON: I dunno, maybe he had something nice to say about him.
CASSANDRA: This code looks easy enough to crack. I think I can do it.
[cut to Cassandra alone in the library, as she looks through the book]
CASSANDRA: "Yakka?" It doesn't make any sense, that's not even a word ... They must mean the full word, not just the letter.
["I love Charles de Lint and" appears on screen]
CASSANDRA: "I love Charles de Lint and ... "The Glass Castle, Ninety Five."
[she closes the book]
CASSANDRA: It must be a page. I gotta look into this.
[cut to Cassandra pulling a copy of "The Glass Castle" off the shelf, as "Swings are one of my favorite things" appears on screen]
[cut to Simon sitting in the library, as Cassandra walks up behind him]
CASSANDRA: Simon, do you know where I can find a copy of "Catching Fire?"
SIMON: Who's the author?
CASSANDRA: Kay Nolte Smith.
SIMON: Check in the "P"s.
CASSANDRA: Awesome, thanks.
[she starts to walk away]
SIMON: Sure you're not looking for Suzanne Collins' book?
CASSANDRA: Actually, I'm not sure. Where would I find that?
SIMON: Should be under the "P"s as well ...
[cut to Cassandra pulling another book off the shelf and flipping through it, as "You remind me of flowers, and" appears on screen]
[cut to Cassandra pulling a copy of "The Shining" off the shelf and flipping through it, as "You know who I am, fine me" appears on screen]
[cut to a shot of Cassandra from the opposite side of a bookshelf, as she looks through the empty space where a book should be]
CASSANDRA: No! Where is it?
[cut to Cassandra walking up to the front desk, where she speaks to an elderly female librarian (brown hair, glasses)]
JOANNE: Hi Cassie, how are you?
CASSANDRA: I'm fine, uh--
JOANN: That's good! Can I help you with something?
CASSANDRA: Actually, yeah. I was looking for a book, and I couldn't find it upstairs. Maybe you have it down here ... "Fahrenheit Four Fifty-One, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition?"
JOANN: Okay, let me check.
[she starts typing on the computer]
JOANNE: We do have it, but not the edition you're looking for. We have an older version.
CASSANDRA: Can you tell me who has it now?
JOANN: I'm sorry, I can't.
CASSANDRA: Please, just this one time? Please? Please, just this one time.
JOANN: [pause] I'm sorry, Cassie, but that's library policy. We can't reveal who has a book checked out.
[Nicke enters the scene]
NICK: Hey JoAnn, there's a kid in the POP department who's looking for a book. He needs some help.
JOANN: Okay.
[he leaves, then Joanne starts to get up]
JOANN: Cassie, the person who has the book will return it in three days. Uh, I'll come back later and reserve it for you.
[she leaves, then Cassandra (after making sure she's gone) sits at the computer and accesses the patron file]
CASSANDRA: Simon ...
[cut to Simon reshelving books, when Cassandra walks up behind him]
CASSANDRA: Simon, I need to talk to you.
SIMON: Sure, what's up?
CASSANDRA: You have a book that I need.
[he smiles and plays innocent]
SIMON: Do I now? And what book would that be?
CASSANDRA: "Fahrenheit Four Fifty-One, Fiftieth Anniversary Edition."
SIMON: And what makes you think I have it?
CASSANDRA: I, uh ... the librarian told me that you have it.
SIMON: If I recall correctly, there is another copy available.
CASSANDRA: No, I need the one you have, I left something important in it.
SIMON: Oh? And what would that be?
CASSANDRA: Why are you asking so many questions? Just give it to me!
SIMON: What, I can't be interested?
CASSANDRA: Wait ... You know who it is. You know who it is I'm looking for!
SIMON: And how would I know that?
[cut to previous footage (now in black and white) of Simon giving her the initial book]
SIMON: I found some writing inside that looks like a code. Maybe you can figure it out.
[cut to more black and white footage of Simon]
SIMON: Sure you're not looking for Suzanne Collins' book?
[cut back to Cassandra with an incredulous look on her face]
CASSANDRA: No, there's no way!
SIMON: Why not?
CASSANDRA: Because ... because you're not capable of pulling off something like this!
SIMON: Why? Because I'm not you? I can't solve a Rubik's Cube, so that means I can't follow a simple code?
CASSANDRA: You can't even solve a basic puzzle, how could you possibly make something I couldn't--
SIMON: God, how can you be so selfish?
CASSANDRA: Selfish? I am not selfish!
SIMON: Yes you are! You don't care about anybody but yourself! All you care about is your stupid puzzles ... I did this to get your attention, and now that I have it, you're not who I thought you were!
[he starts to walk away]
SIMON: You want the book? Here!
[he takes a book off of his bookcart and throws it to the ground]
SIMON: I don't need it anymore! And I don't think I need you, either ...
[he walks away (as Cassandra bends down to pick up the book), then cut to Simon angrily reshelving books in another section of the library, when Nick walks up behind him]
SIMON: I'm not in the mood for your wisecracks ...
NICK: I know ...
SIMON: Then leave me alone.
NICK: She quit this morning. Just thought you should know ... Oh, and she left you something.
[he puts a piece of paper down on his bookcart and walks away, as he opens it up to find a note reading "I'm sorry, Simon"]
[cut to another angle of Simon reading the note, as Cassandra (out of her student worker uniform and wearing a white blouse with black pants) enters the scene]
CASSANDRA: Can you forgive me?
[he looks up, still with an annoyed look on his face]
SIMON: You aren't supposed to be up here.
CASSANDRA: I know, I just ... wanted to apologize.
SIMON: Why'd you quit?
CASSANDRA: JoAnn found out that I looked up who got out "Fahrenheit Four Fifty-One," and she had to write me up. I can't afford to lose another job, so I quit.
SIMON: Where you gonna work?
CASSANDRA: There's a coffee shop on campus that's hiring
SIMON: But you won't have time to do your puzzles ...
CASSANDRA: Yeah, but I'll have access to those awesome chai lattes.
[they both look at each other and say "They're my favorite!" at the same time, then laugh nervously]
CASSANDRA: So, I have a question for you.
SIMON: Shoot.
CASSANDRA: If you wanted to ask me out, why didn't you just do it?
SIMON: Well y'know, me and Nick were plotting to break into the Playboy Mansion--
[he smiles as she playfully hits him on the shoulder, and the scene cuts to black]

Produced, Directed, and Written by
Alyssa Ricigliano

Julia Squilla

James Matias

Carol Henning

Ashley Oberg

Sound by
Alyssa Ricigliano
Ryan Conner
Julia Squilla

Edited by
Alyssa Ricigliano

Music by
No Time to Think



"Puzzle to my Heart" -- the story of a puzzle-obsessed Stacks librarian who discovers a code in a book and follows it to a series of books, each with a coded clue inside. You see, she never met a puzzle she didn't love. The code takes her on a journey of more codes in order to learn the identity of the person who created the greatest puzzle she would ever solve. Little does she know that the creator is someone she overlooks on a daily basis. This is an intellectual love story with a surprising twist.

After the opening credits roll over a montage of Rubik's cubes and other such fun puzzles, we meet our hero and heroine, Simon and Cassandra, respectively (whose names are subject to change). After Simon sends Cassandra off to fulfill a patron request, we meet Nick, Simon's closest male friend who lays down the first clue to solving the code creator's identity (not that it will be terribly difficult to figure out anyway). Later on, Simon discovers the first book with the first code written inside and presents it to Cassandra to solve. This leads Cassandra on the hunt to discover the next clues in the next series of books which leads her to the final book which can't be found as it has been taken out. Cassandra talks to a coworker about finding the person but due to library policy the name cannot be revealed. So Cassandra waits for the opportune moment to discover the person's name who took the book out and this leads her to find that the identity of (SPOILER) the creator of the code is actually Simon (I did mention it wouldn't be terribly difficult to figure out, didn't I?). After a short fight between the two, Cassandra quits her job. The next day, Nick gives Simon a letter from Cassandra and leaves before Cassandra appears and apologizes. She explains the reason why she quit and he forgives her (the ending is hopefully as funny out loud as it sounds in my head). The end. Ending credits have yet to be decided, but will likely mimic the opening credits.

Posted by Alyssa Ricigliano at 3:17 PM

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