Boys in my hood
Inside, Douglas and Maguire stand in the back of a crowded lecture hall, listening to Q and his pretentiously pompous pontification. A particularly purple passage causes Maguire to cackle madly, and everyone turns to stare at him. Douglas sees Sara leave and follows her out. The drugs are starting to kick in, and he staggers through the hallway. Pictures of Q smiling. Posters of WordFest with Sara on them. A spookily lit statue of a the Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus. Douglas remembers his own impending fatherhood, and passes out. Fade to white.
Fade back to see the Virgin Mary statue replaced by Sara. Okay, that one's gonna cost at least two subtlety points. She's leaning over Michael "Coma" Douglas, trying to wake him up. She tells him he had another episode, and then helps him to his feet. They look at each other for a moment, and then he tries to confess what happened to Poe. She stops him, thinking he's going to break up with her. She finds the codeine pills, still grasped in his hand. This movie has a lot of little moments that are done extremely well by the actors. McDormand is always fantastic, but even Douglas is doing pretty well here. Sara tells him she's getting an abortion. She lights a cigarette to demonstrate her lack of concern for the baby. Douglas grabs it from her and stubs it out. More fighting. She professes her love. He looks unwilling to commit. Then he picks up his coat, and Tobey's gun falls out. He tells her it's fake, and she grabs it and points it at his chest. They just stare at each other. Finally, the doors swing open behind them, and the WordFest patrons spill out. RDJ and some random extra are dragging out Tobey, who is clearly stoned out of his gourd. He's narrating all the action as they carry him, only he's doing it in the third person, like the writer he is. Douglas asks if he's okay. "He's narrating. He'll be fine," replies RDJ. Antonia asks for a ride home.
In the car. Douglas is driving; Antonia is removing her make-up and now insists on being called "Tony." Director Curtis Hanson gets the two subtlety points back for not putting "Take a Walk on the Wild Side" on the soundtrack here, which I can assure you Tarantino would have. It's also worth noting that Bob Dylan handled all the soundtrack duties for this film, and even chipped in a new, original song for the opening credits. As you might have noticed, I'm a fan. Anyway, Tony tells Douglas that RDJ's career is basically ruined, and that Douglas's follow-up novel is his only hope for salvation. Shot through the rearview mirror as a car passes by, Douglas quite literally freezes like a deer in the headlights at this thought, and then Tony gets out of the car and leaves the movie forever, which is sad, because Michael Cavadias is a pretty good actor, but it's also probably for the best, since I'm not sure this sentence could get any longer -- oh, wait, it can. Cavadias isn't as pretty as Cibrian, even with the pretty, pretty wig, but he's pretty pretty nonetheless.