EXT. GREEN HILL, EVESHAM, ENGLAND, AUGUST 1265. MORNING.
CLOSE-UP: Sloping ground, grass, mist, a rippling flow of
water from a spring oozes, cutting its way trough the grass.
There is the sound of running, stumbling feet and frightened
breathing. Beyond view, a body falls heavily to the earth. A
gnarled old hand is desperately searching through the grass
until the fingers touch the water. Breathing becomes faster,
PULL BACK TO: a blind old woman lying on the ground, eagerly
dabbing the spring’s water to her eyes. The chain-mailed legs
of two soldiers approach from behind her and a hand reaches
down, grasping the woman by her shoulder. The old woman
shrieks and struggles as the soldiers drag her away. Her head
rolls back and one eye, then the other, opens, looking at the
camera. She can see! Her screams become laughter, exultation.
SHOT PULLS FURTHER BACK: The figure of a monk, Robert of
Gloucester, in a hooded cassock stands watching as the woman
is dragged away.
ROBERT OF GLOUCESTER
They will hang her. Death is the
penalty for taking water from the
spring that’s come up where he
ROBERT turns to the camera, lowering his hood to reveal his
shaved head and melancholy features (He is the chronicler and
eyewitness of Simon’s last days.)
ROBERT OF GLOUCESTER (CONT’D)
… or even for speaking his name. It
was he who made the common people
masters of their King. He created
EXT. DOVER. DECEMBER 1229. — DAY.
Light snow is falling through mist. Dimly, Dover castle, then
the familiar white cliffs of Dover are seen through snow.
CAMERA PANS down to LONG SHOT of the shore at the foot of the
cliffs: thatch-roofed stone warehouses, a quay with singlemasted
ships. One is unloading.
PAN to the dock: A wooden crane unloads cargo from a ship.
Sailors man the crane, hauling the cargo of barrels, bundles
and crates onto the dock where a few passengers rummage for
their belongings. A large white horse, its feet bound, and
with cinches around its belly and chest, is hoisted out of
the ship’s hold and swung onto the dock.
CLOSE IN: Among the passengers a tall, fine featured,
handsome youth, Simon, squints as he watches the frightened
horse unloaded. His dark hair is tousled, his dark eyes
narrow with acute nearsightedness. Simon is dressed in a
white cloak and white wool riding robe. A sword, hanging
sheathed from his belt, marks him as a knight, his white
clothes mark him as an unpledged novice.
VOICE OVER: ROBERT OF GLOUCESTER
And there were other treasons… He
changed our world. Many believe him
a saint. Or even the Risen Christ.
No one could have seemed less