Private Project

Heat-resistant cows

A young guy stares at his reflection in the waters of a forrest lake. After he discovers it has long since vanished, his eyes open wide on the crisis the world is facing.

  • Mark Kvitko
  • Project Type:
    Short Script
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - NYU
Writer - Mark Kvitko
Writer Statement

Wrote this script overnight on September 29, 2023.

The main character Zack wants to be an architect, which to me is a conciousness with a vivid idea of the power of the human will. 'You know what I could to your house here!' he says to his grandmother. Her respond is just 'I know you could do a lot! But there is no need for it.' I think this quick moment is very interesting in terms of what the whole film is about and our attitude towards nature in general. Yet so far I feel this aspect specifically is very subtly put in the text. The story is very much about simplicity and affectation, both inherent to human nature. The different views on Manhattan, which open and close the film, reflect this idea.

I think I’ve found an interesting way to talk about global warming. Just like Narcissus, we stubbornly stare at the reflection and don't see that the lake is long gone. I don't know why I've got this idea of linking environmental problems with the myth of the Ancient Greeks, but it's working, apparently. Our narcissism and stubroness is what causes the problem. But the cows are simple, they don't have ambition, and they stay grazing in their field. Let's preserve these cows!

I hate to include morals in my writing but this time I feel that it happened. Even though I tried to stay creative and make it as subtle as possible. Honestly, I don't know how you could talk about global warming without a clear position.

I hope you see something of your own in this text though. Beyond is writing that could also be useful in understanding the story and bringing it to a new level.

His name was Someone. The Someone is Peter. Peter was once a rock. He was born after lightning struck a rocky cliff. Falling away from his friends, Peter fell into an icy spring. At first, at the expense of his rapid fall, and being on the surface, Peter rolled, floated further and further away from the cliff along the shallow spring. But the strong spring beat Peter so mercilessly that he lost his initial shape and thinned down to a grain of sand. Just like from brothers of the cliff, he as a grain fell away from the other grains and never saw them again. Man, the crown of nature, came to mine the sand to make glass for his personal mirror. He took sand in heaps, but no one knows why - there was a huge difference between the grains of sand, inaccessible to man difference. Soon each of them, separated, became a reflection of that man. Man was astonished as he looked at himself and saw what he did not wish to see. But still Man cut down a tree to get paper, killed an animal to get paint and described "Himself". Having described himself, he spoke of others, of grains of sand, but noticed what he did not like about himself: he saw flaws in his face, frowning eyebrows concerned him, aged wrinkles, a meaningless look... But not so long before, the Man's eyebrows were cheerful; wrinkles, if even visible, were only marks of frequent smiles; his gaze was deep and thoughtful... He wrote only, "Why?" The man's name was Peter, and he, just like his parents, had once been a frowning stone resisting a shallow spring; a thinned grain of sand; a reflection of something Greater than himself...