The Last Ice Cream Truck

EXT. MIDWEST – NOON

On a corner of a small town that just over 850 mostly elderly people call home sits a middle-aged man named CARLO inside his ice cream truck. It is a sunny afternoon. He is bored and alone. Six-year-old SOPHIA stands nearby, silently for a while. but then she stirs CARLO out of his daydream with a soft voice that can almost be mistaken for a gentle breeze.

 SOPHIA

Hi. Do you have vanilla ice cream with rainbow sprinkles?

CARLO lifts his head and hastily turns on the switch that plays traditional American ice cream truck music. 

CARLO

What?… Who’s there?… Oh—how can I help you? 

SOPHIA

(gentle whisper)

I said can I have a vanilla ice cream cone with sprinkles? 

CARLO grunts, nods, and begins to make the cone.

CARLO

Have we met before? 

SOPHIA

I don’t know. Maybe.

CARLO finishes making the cone and hands it to SOPHIA. 

CARLO

Where are your parents? 

SOPHIA

They went away. 

CARLO

Where did they go? 

SOPHIA

With everyone else. 

CARLO

With everyone else? I don’t know what that means. How far away

do you live? 

SOPHIA

I live just over those hills, on the other side of the valley. 

CARLO

And you walked here? All by yourself?

SOPHIA

When I was really little my mother and father used to walk everywhere. We

didn’t have a car. But in the summer we could hear the music from the ice

cream trucks. From all the way down here. 

CARLO

You haven’t touched your ice cream yet. It’s melting. 

SOPHIA

Oh no! I need another one.  

CARLO

(sighs heavily)

Before I give you another one, I’ll need two dollars. One for this one and

one for the next one.

SOPHIA

My mommy only gave me one dollar.

CARLO

Fine. I’ll live with it. But where is your mother? 

SOPHIA

I told you. She went with the others.

CARLO begins to make a new cone. 

SOPHIA

Did you know that you’re the last ice cream truck in

the whole world. 

CARLO stops making the cone and turns toward SOPHIA. 

CARLO

What? What did you say? 

SOPHIA

It’s just you and me now. 

CARLO pokes his head out of the window of the ice cream truck. 

CARLO

Where are your parents? 

SOPHIA

In heaven. 

CARLO

Heaven. Yeah, right. Are you lost? 

SOPHIA

Maybe. Maybe not.

CARLO steps out of his truck and gently—though nervously—takes SOPHIA’s hand.

CARLO

Which way did you come here?

SOPHIA

I told you. I came down the hill, then walked between those two buildings,

then came up this hill.

CARLO

Between those two building down there?

SOPHIA

Yes. But I don’t want to go back.

CARLO stands on a big rock that’s just about the same size as a milk crate. He still holds onto SOPHIA’s hand and gently helps her up onto the rock. He calls out loudly: 

CARLO

Does anyone know who this little girl belongs to?… Hello?… Listen

up… Does anyone know who this little girl belongs to?

After a moment, without having heard a response, CARLO lets go of SOPHIA’s hand and returns to his ice cream truck to make a phone call. He starts to dial. 

SOPHIA

All the phones are dead. 

CARLO realizes there is no dial tone.

CARLO

How did you know that?

CARLO hangs up. SOPHIA runs around the ice cream truck singing: 

SOPHIA

You are the only ice cream truck in the world.

You are the only ice cream truck in the world.

You are the only ice cream truck in the world. 

CARLO

(annoyed)

Stop it. 

SOPHIA laughs.

CARLO

Why are you laughing? Why? Is it because that according to you

I’m the only ice cream truck left in the world? Is that  it? Well, that’s stupid.

It’s stupid and silly.  

SOPHIA

You’re no fun.  

CARLO

I’m no fun? Well, sorry about that. But I don’t have time to be fun. All I have

time for is to prove to you that there are more people around than just me and

you. There are others. Plenty of others. We’re gonna go down the hill so I can

prove it to you.  

SOPHIA

Are you sure you want to do that?

CARLO

Why wouldn’t I? 

CARLO rolls up the window, powers down the generator, removes his apron, and exits the truck. SOPHIA grabs CARLO’s hand and leads him down the hill. After a bit of strolling, they reach the bottom, where they go to a building with a steel door that looks very menacing. 

CARLO

Is this where your parents live? Maybe I know them. 

SOPHIA

No. But they used to work here.  

CARLO

Maybe if we knock on the door, someone will come out to talk to us.  

SOPHIA

Maybe. But I think we should go back up the hill instead.  

CARLO ignores her, then notices light peeping out from all around the perimeter of the steel door. He pushes the door open, then falls to the ground in dismay.

CARLO

What is this place? It looks like Times Square in New York City. How can

that be? I was there once. There are thousands of people in Times Square.

Where are all the people? Where are they?

(turns to Sophia, trembling).

Why did you bring me here? 

SOPHIA

You wanted to come. You wanted to open this door.

Don’t you remember?

CARLO looks at SOPHIA. There is a look of recognition in his eyes.   

CARLO

I know you. Twenty years ago, maybe. When I was a boy. But how

could you still be a little girl? How could you be here? 

CARLO seems lost in his memory. From the ice cream truck comes a voice:

VOICE

You already died, when you lied

Slippers on your feet

Robe on your back

Trying to catch up to what you lack

Music was tears

Cold nights in the black hole

The only hope was the twinkling specks on those white clouds.

She stood on the corner waiting for you

But you never listened

Even unconscious the music still plays.

 

CARLO comes out of his memory trance and addresses SOPHIA. 

CARLO

What’s your name? 

SOPHIA

Sophia 

CARLO

(hesitantly)

Sophia! I loved a girl name Sofia when I was seven year old… Are you…

You can’t… It’s impossible… Are you Sophia?

-End-

©Robertson Tirado copyright 2018

This short screenplay is exclusively written for independent directors, a $250 licensing  fee grants up to 10 filmmakers the rights to visualize this story. Contact Robertson Tirado for payment and certificate.

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