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THE COMMON ROOM

A proud former religious superior, newly retired and fighting for his dignity at a retirement home for monks, meets up with an old, vengeful nemesis - and an old flame.

Brother Erminus, the former Superior of a religious order, finds himself retired at age 65, ironically an age he himself decreed years ago for all members of his order. But he is still a robust and energetic man, who has to share his lot with aged and dispiriting monks in a former mansion now called The Manor. The Manor is run by Brother Giles, a petty tyrant and former nemesis of Erminus, who delights in humiliating Erminus continually and makes him do menial tasks as payback for past slights. Erminus’ s only friend at the Manor turns out to be Brother Didymus, a sardonic monk, who still resents Erminus for forcing him into retirement.

The only bright spot for Erminus is when Nadia Goodloe, former owner of the mansion, visits The Manor one day as a ploy by Giles to beg her for money. Nadia bumps into Erminus in the common room, where they first met years ago when Erminus was negotiating with Nadia for sale of the mansion to his order, during which time Erminus and Nadia had a torrid love affair. Nadia tries to rekindle that romance, but Erminus refuses, as he did the first time, because of his vows.

As some of the retirees continue to die around him, winter begins to set in. Erminus himself becomes sick, but Giles refuses to give Erminus necessary medicine. Didymus tries to nurse Erminus back to health, so Nadia manages to smuggle in the medicine when she finds out Giles’ intentions.

In the spring, Erminus recovers enough from his sickness to challenge Giles’ authority, but he also must decide once again whether to remain faithful to his vows or leave the order for his own sake and for that of Nadia.

Written by:
Format:
Screenplay
Genres:
Starring Roles For:
Anthony Hopkins
J.K. Simmons
Helen Mirren
In the Vein Of:
One Flew Over the Cukoo's Nest
The Notebook
Posted:
09/30/2007
Updated:
09/07/2019
Author Bio:
An award-winning playwright & screenwriter. Several screenplays optioned. Three plays published and numerous ones produced. Three scriptwriting fellowships from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. Also a member of SAG- AFTRA.