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The Corrupted Thriller Screenplay Synopsis


 The Corrupted                  by Robert T. Roe                        503-998-2479


Logline:  “A police detective, who suspects a missing girl is a victim of the legendary shanghai tunnels of Portland, is opposed by corrupt officials and a powerful business man.”


         After losing his wife and daughter to the Chicago mob, DETECTIVE WILLIAM LARKIN moved to Portland to be with the rest of his family. He hoped to live a simpler, saner life. After a high school rose princess, CARLA SMITH, goes missing, he was assigned to find her but the trail led him toward the ugly world of the notorious Shanghai tunnels of Portland.  These tunnels existed as a myth- a tale- a story that everyone denied including public officials.  It is rumored that Portland was called The Forbidden City by the maritime world. Men and women were drugged, trapped, and then sold to sea captains and flesh traders.

        Detective Larkin snooped around the docks hoping to find a clue to their existence and Carla, but was ordered by his Captain and Police Commissioner to stick to other matters.  They assigned him to the murder of a young college grad.  To his surprise, this investigation leads him directly to his own brother-in-law, JONATHAN, his nephew, DANNY, and to a prominent businessman, TOM HARRISON. 

       Tom’s son had been killed by a logging accident with Jonathan and Danny. He hated them and had already tried to have them killed.  Danny now wanted to marry Tom’s daughter, KATHERINE, and so Tom made a deal with another of his daughter’s suitors, BRANT, to have Danny shanghaied. Tom saw in Brant a replacement for his dead son plus he knew all about the Shanghai tunnels. He ran them.

      At the bar where Danny was to be shanghaied, things go bad for Brant. He is added to those in wire cages waiting to be sold to sea and Katherine ends up on a ship headed to a harem across the ocean. Things also go bad for Detective Larkin. He is shot and presumed dead- floating down the Willamette River. Yet, Larkin surprises the bad guys, alludes the corrupt officials, and finds the shanghai tunnels. In the dark world below the streets, he finds the key to saving Danny, Katherine and Carla.  In a face-off with Tom Harrison the miserable world of the one hundred year Shanghai Tunnels comes to its end in this 1940 thriller.


Cinematic Moments:

q       A frightened teenage girl is chased through a dark tunnel with a thug after her

q       Our bad guy, TOM, slips an envelope filled with money to a killer

q       A beat cop falls pray to thugs in the tunnels beneath the streets and is chained to a wall

q       The killer dumps a load of logs down a hillside that almost kills two lead characters- the truck turns over and kills him instead

q       Our hero, DETECTIVE LARKIN, is chewed out by the missing teenage girls mother at the police station

q       Four caged men are sold to Sea Captains in the early morning fog at the docks by TOM

q       A lead character, DANNY, has a fist fight with TOM over a marriage proposal to his daughter

q       TOM beats his daughter at home

q       TOM kills a tunnel thug and throws him in a hole filled with RATS where he is consumed

q       TOM kills a college kid and frames the murder on Danny

q       TOM’S thugs shot Larkin and he falls into the river

q       LARKIN gets mad, invades the tunnels and has a war with the thugs

q       LARKIN kills TOM

q       LARKIN rescues those kidnapped by the thugs





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