4:AM IN CHINATOWN
What do you do when all your enemies are friends?
DANNY, despondent over the death of his parents, MARTHA,
escaping an abusive relationship, and SEAN, mourning the death
of a lover, wander through the seedier side of San Francisco's
nightlife. They meet by chance, and instantly connect. The
threesome move into a posh loft located in San Francisco's
Chinatown, paid for by Danny's enormous inheritance.
While enjoying the good life, the three become inseparable.
Their bond is threatened when ALEX, Martha's ex-husband shows
up and convinces her to go back to Oakland with him. Sean
gets a taste of Alex's violent side when he has a confrontation
Danny and Sean immediately track her down and convince her
to come back. She agrees but fears Alex will come looking
for her. They hideout at a vineyard Danny inherited. The lighthouse
at the vineyard offers few comforts and Martha braves the
storm to get more supplies from the car. Suddenly, Martha
screams as she feels someone grabbing her. She manages to
escape but is sure Alex has found her. Her screams bring Danny
and Sean running. Grabbing rocks and branches as their only
weapons, the men start swinging. With wind and rain pounding,
Danny and Sean make a terrible mistake. The shadowy figure
falls and they realize the intruder isn't Alex. In fact they
don't know who he is. The only sure thing is that the man
It was an accident, but in the small seaside town who'd believe
three out-of-towners mistakenly clubbed a man to death? Reeling
with shock and fear, they throw the corpse off the cliff into
the pounding surf below. The three swear to never reveal the
truth of what has happened that night. Guilt ridden, tension
runs high between the three as they drive back to Chinatown.
Paranoia replaces their former bliss. Anything one of three
does is analyzed by the other two. They separate into constantly
shifting camps. The investigation started by Detective Keen
into the murder has each one wondering who will cave in first
The threesome begin to question each other. Did Danny's parents
really die in an accident or is there a more sinister explanation.
Were they killed for the inheritance? Was Sean's appearance
in Danny's life a mere coincidence or a skillfully planned
scheme? And is Martha innocent in this game or is she the
one who could mastermind a plan that is manipulating them
Detective Keen digs deeper. Martha and Sean are particularly
concerned when Keen calls frequently and leaves messages that
he is returning Danny's call. Danny is behaving erratically,
shutting himself off to the world or having hallucinations.
Martha and Sean blame it on the anti-depressants that Danny
Paranoia runs rampant. Sean finds Martha in Danny's medicine
cabinet. If she were just looking for a sleeping pill, why
did she look so guilty? Martha tells Sean she found Danny's
journal and realizes Danny is about to turn them all in. Keen
is closing in on them. The threesome see him at every turn
just waiting for them to trip up.
In a tragic climax, Sean and Martha confront Danny about
his journal and accuse him of betraying the secrecy they all
swore too. Danny backs away from them
closer and closer
to the ledge of the balcony. Too late, Danny slips. Sean reaches
out and is able to grab his arm as Danny dangles over the
edge. Sean turns to look at Martha, who without looking at
Danny nods. Sean lets go and Danny plunges to his death.
After Danny's funeral, Martha and Sean pack up their meager
belongings from the loft and part ways. Sean never expects
to see her again
it's too painful.
Weeks later he settles into his own place. He unpacks the
few boxes that are all that remain from that time in his life.
He comes across an unfamiliar item. A photo album that must
have belonged to Danny. He's see pictures of Danny and his
brother Mickey. Danny had told them a little about Mickey.
Black sheep of the family and disowned, Mickey wasn't entitled
to any inheritance when his parents died. Upon closer inspection
of the photo, Sean realizes he has seen Mickey before
Alex, Martha's ex-husband.
Sean begins to unravel the brilliant scheme
them all right from the beginning. Sean finds an address for
her and goes there to confront her. Imagine his surprise when
Detective Keen answers the door.
Turns out Keen isn't a Detective at all but is really Martha's
father who has helped her scheme by adding pressure playing
the Detective. Martha played it all along right down to substituting
Emitrax, a drug which when taken with anti depressants can
cause a person to feel suicidal. She covered all her bases
including later killing Alex/Mickey after he had received
the inheritance from Danny's estate. The police were quick
to buy her story; after all, she had filed police reports
of spousal abuse before. The homicide was ruled self defense.
In the end, Martha alone was left with Danny's vast fortune.
That only left Sean
are Martha and her father worried
about him? Not really
after all, who let go of Danny
when he was hanging off the balcony, and then there is the
matter of that man who was bludgeoned to death in the vineyard.
This is Chinatown. Everyone has an agenda. Nothing is as
it seems. And one wrong move can spell disaster.
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