Hungry Ghosts (2020) s01e02 Episode Script

Episode 2

He's here. He's here.
Quang has come back.
The gates of hell have opened.
If you tap a bowl during
Hungry Ghosts month,
a ghost will think you are
inviting them to eat with you.
The Drowned Man.
- May!
- Jesus, Stella!
They're doing a retrospective
of my work. The Vietnam years.
Just idiots, digging up the past.
It'd be great if you could stay for it.
Support the old man.
It's Thao.
Where are they?
Where has she hidden them?
Mrs Vu, good morning.
- How'd you sleep?
- Bad.
- Oh.
- Really hungry.
That's no good.
I dreamt of the crossing.
I was so afraid.
Not knowing what was
happening on the other side.
Well how about we get
you some breakfast,
and then I'll find out
where your chart's got to
and we'll look into getting
you admitted to a ward
where you'll be much more comfy, okay?
- Doctor Williams?
- Yes.
You treated my grandmother, Phuong Le.
She came here a couple of nights ago.
- She had a heart attack.
- Yes, of course. I I remember.
I really need to speak to you.
I'll be right back, Mrs Vu.
Before she died, she said, "He's here."
Yes, that's, uh
She didn't say who's here?
Anything about, um
maybe a restaurant?
A restaurant?
No, she just said
something about, um bread.
Your grandmother was in heart failure.
She wasn't getting enough oxygen
to her brain,
so that would explain why
she was speaking irrationally.
If it was irrational, then why did
you bother delivering the message?
- What aren't you telling me?
- Nothing.
I'm very sorry about your grandmother.
I have to get back to my patients.
Where's Mrs Vu?
- She died, poor thing.
- Just then?
No, 3 A.M. this morning.
Coffee's brewed. You've been busy.
Why don't you stick
around for a few days?
I've missed ya.
Good to have a proper catch up.
And to have you at this thing.
Ah, just get in the way
of all those admirers.
This one's not from the war.
- Took it the other day.
- I can't believe you still use film.
Old dog.
Capturing ghosts.
What'd you say?
Oh, when I was little, some of
your negatives used to spook me.
And you'd say, um, "That's my
burden, Lizzie. Capturing ghosts."
You don't remember?
Let me show you something.
That's me. Vietnam, 1973.
- Who's this?
- Thao Hoang, my interpreter.
I blew this up
from this.
What do you think?
Think it's the same fella?
It couldn't be.
No. Couldn't be.
What happened to him?
I don't know.
Hey, Lisa, it's me again.
Look, I've been trying
to get a hold of Soph,
but she's not answering her phone.
Khoa? I'm sorry, Khoa.
- Ong noi?
- I'm sorry. I'm sorry, Khoa.
- Grandpa? Grandpa!
- I'm sorry.
What's wrong? Grandpa?
Grandpa, it's me. Grandpa, it's me.
It's okay.
Hey, it's okay. It's okay. Grandpa.
Hope you don't mind Mum
taking over your garden.
Oh, shit.
- Shit.
- She just can't help herself.
Bet she's been out there since dawn.
When we lived on Barton Street,
she lived half her life in the backyard,
trying to re-create her
little garden in Saigon.
All vegetables.
Most of it died that first summer.
Your Mum's garden was lovely.
Can you make sure you get
all the dead skin off my heels?
Last time, they felt like sandpaper.
- Oww!
- May!
Hello. Come in, come in.
Here, sit, sit, sit.
Oh, hi. Um, no, no. I'm just
I'm looking for May Le.
I was told she worked here.
May Le!
- Hi.
- Doctor Williams.
Ben, please. Call me Ben.
What are you what are you doing here?
Is this about my grandmother?
Um, I don't know. It's, uh
I just need a quick word.
When you came to the hospital this
morning, I was with a patient.
Mrs Vu. You spoke to her in Vietnamese.
I said, "Sorry for interrupting."
So you did see her?
Yeah, I saw her. So what?
Okay, I have a shop full of
bunions to scour, so
Mrs Vu died at 3 A.M. this morning.
- So, who was the old lady in the bed?
- Mrs Vu.
Yep. I, um
I wouldn't joke about death.
Or one of my patients.
So, what, she she was a ghost?
I don't believe in ghosts.
I don't know what's happening.
Or what I'm seeing.
What else have you been seeing?
I'm um
I'm sorry. I I I really
I know someone who can help.
Her name was Rose.
She was eight years old.
She came in last week and she died.
She choked on a jellybean.
And I saw her across the road.
She was standing there.
And she was gone.
I'm exhausted, so I thought
I was just seeing things.
you saw Mrs Vu.
We need to do a seance.
What? A se No. I, um
You've been seeing dead patients, Ben.
Including Phuong.
Maybe she's trying to get
another message through.
I can't do a seance.
I'm a doctor.
I'm calling to you, Phuong,
in whatever dimension
your spirit resides.
Let me be your vessel.
My body is your body,
my voice, your voice.
I invite you in!
Complete the circle.
Hands, guys, hands.
Mm. Mm.
Ba ngoai?
Ba ngoai!
Now you know what I want,
hmm? Where are they?
- Ba ngoai?
- Find his souls.
Find his three souls!
Where have you hidden them? Hmm?
Somewhere in here?
Ba ngoai? Ba ngoai!
Hey, hey, hey, hey!
You shouldn't be in here.
Oh, I'm just here to pay my
respects to a dear old friend.
Love your work.
You tranced out on us, babe.
Glazed right over.
You kept saying, "Find his
soul, find his three souls."
Find his souls? Whose souls?
You're telling the story here.
What do you remember?
Water. Um
A river.
Ba ngoai was there.
And and someone else.
Um a man, I think.
- I remember a fish.
- A fish?
I think she was trying
to show me something.
If she wanted us to
make sense of it all,
she should have come through me,
I'm the medium here.
He's the conduit.
Your hand.
The burn. It happened trying
to save my grandmother.
Uh I'm sorry, I've gotta go.
What? No, you can't.
I've been working for 36
hours and I've gotta go.
- Ben, I need your help.
- I'm sorry. I am, um
The chef in the imaginary restaurant.
He said you had power.
That you're the one.
I don't have any power.
That's when I heard him calling out.
He was in the storeroom, on his
knees, just just talking to
No-one. There was nobody there.
He just kept on saying,
"I'm sorry, Khoa.
"I'm sorry, Khoa."
Who's Khoa? One of the customers?
Beats me.
Bao was freaked out.
Says he won't come back to the shop
till the end of Hungry Ghosts month.
If Dad's too unwell to work tomorrow,
you'll have to work there again.
- It's not like you've got Uni.
- I can't do it alone.
I'll see if I can move
some meetings around.
Paul, come help me with your father.
He needs to take the medicine.
Paul. Paul! Paul!
Wow. He's terrifying.
I just love this whole
Ghost Month tradition.
Uh, it's lame.
Come on, you've gotta
get into the spirit of it.
Oh, ha-ha.
Come eat your dinner
before it gets cold.
How's your Dad?
Mum's going to need a hip replacement.
Last thing she needs to worry
about is that bloody shop.
And now Daniel throws away
two years of study, like that.
Are you talking about your
Mum's worries or yours?
Daniel's got real talent, Paul.
There's a lot of really
talented, really poor artists.
I want him to get a degree, too.
But he's stubborn, like you.
You push him, and he won't.
I've worked my guts out so my
kids could go to university.
- What's a year's deferment?
- A lot can change in a year.
Hell, everything can change in a day!
It's impossible to
talk to you sometimes.
This meeting'll be a couple of hours.
Dinner, then finish him
before any screens.
I've cursed this family.
you haven't cursed anyone.
I've eaten too many frogs.
I don't think you can be
cursed for eating frogs.
In the bamboo gulag, we would bury
two or three prisoners every day.
And wild pigs would always dig them up.
I always dream of war,
but mostly I dream I'm in a grave,
and a pig is digging.
And I can hear grunting, Daniel.
I can feel its wet mouth on my face.
You survived, ong noi.
I'm in Australia.
But the Communists
could still arrest me.
Is that who you thought
you saw in the store?
A Communist?
Who's Khoa?
He's nobody.
He's nobody.
You never believed
in Ma's nonsense. Why now?
You weren't there today.
It was weird. It was like
There's no point telling you.
What are you going to do with them?
They're for ba ngoai's funeral.
There are hardly any photos
of you and me together.
Photography wasn't my thing.
Did you know she was a sorcerer?
What kind of sorcerer was she?
And why didn't she ever tell me?
She's my grandmother.
Why do I know practically
nothing about her?
- I don't know.
- Why not?
Jesus, what is wrong with this family?
We know nothing about each other.
Not true.
The guy that I was seeing for
two years, who I almost married.
What was his name?
Or the business that we had together?
My passion. The only thing
that I've ever wanted to do.
What was it?
Something about
Oh, hello.
Are you a friend of Phuong's?
- Yes.
- Ah, please, come through.
- Oh, Clare, hi.
- Hi.
We were going to go through the
photos to finalise the display.
Oh, shit, I forgot. Um
What say I choose some appropriate shots
and courier them over tomorrow?
Oh. Sure, sure.
- Sorry.
- No, it's okay.
It's I look forward
to seeing what you
pick out.
Who are you talking to?
I I came out to see the blossom.
You should be inside. It's cold.
You must be gentle to your father.
He has many burdens.
You are not one of them.
When I die, promise me
you'll look after him.
Ma, you're not going to die.
One day, I will.
I will.
If it makes you feel better,
I'll build a shrine.
Even when I was little,
Ma was more interested
in her religion than me.
I spent my childhood following
her all around temples.
That's funny. I grew up in nightclubs.
Your Ma had a special bracelet
with 108 Buddhist beads on it.
I would like to see it, if I may.
You're the one who went
through her jewellery.
To make sure the ambulance
driver didn't steal anything.
Well, they didn't steal
the hair comb, I see.
I'm wearing in honour of Ma.
Of course, I'll have another look.
I saw you in a dream.
You found old bones in a cave.
Quang's bones. His tomb has been opened.
- Quang's here.
- Who is this Quang?
He was the leader of
your ba ngoai's sect.
Wise and gentle, until he got
obsessed with ngai sorcery.
He thought he could stop the war and
unite the country with his magic.
But its powers sent him mad,
and arrogance cost him his life.
And when he tried to return from the
dead, your ba ngoai stopped him.
She trapped him in hell and buried
his tomb and sealed it with spells.
Who cares if Quang's back?
Isn't that what Hungry Ghosts
month is all about?
The dead come back to haunt the living?
Quang has three souls,
and he will be looking for them.
Three souls?
When he died, Phuong hid
them in the mortal world
as an extra layer of protection.
Now if Quang finds them,
he can return to life and resist
the power of hell to draw him back.
And if he does that
The gates of hell can't close.
And if they do not, then the ghosts
will forever wander the earth,
tormenting the living.
Where are they?
Where did ba ngoai hide the souls?
I don't know.
But you must find them before he does.
- Harry.
- Hey, Neil.
- Thanks for coming.
- No problem.
I reckon last time
I saw you was March '69.
Before I flew out to Nha Trang.
When I heard the 7th was going to
An Loc, I said a prayer for you.
Thank you.
You remember that civilian guide
I had with me? Thao Hoang?
I'm trying to find out
what happened to him.
- Did he get out?
- That's what I'm trying to find out.
And you've got a lot more contacts
in the community than I have.
Maybe someone would recognise him.
He was married.
I don't know his wife's name.
He had two kids,
boys, and his wife was
pregnant with a third.
So why do you want to find him?
Maybe it's this retrospective I'm doing.
Brought up a few ghosts.
Maybe best to leave them buried.
Ngai sorcery. That's like
serious black magic, babe.
You don't mess with it.
You know, ba ngoai told
me about bad omens.
Maybe if I'd gone to
the temple with her
It wasn't your fault.
Hey, when it's an inauspicious
time, you can't stop bad luck.
How the hell am I meant
to find his souls?
Maybe that's what Phuong was
trying to show you in that vision.
She showed me a fish, Rox. A fish.
What am I meant to do with that?
A fish soap-on-a-rope. Huong Dao
sells them at her Dollar King.
Diane. Do we have an appointment?
I need to see you.
It's my daughter, Sophie. She's gone.
Gone where?
The water's taken her.
Are you getting anything?
No, nothing.
Show me Sophie's room.
I don't think this has
anything to do with ba ngoai.
Your mother's been worried sick.
I'm so sorry, Mum. I left my phone here.
- Silly.
- Why are you wet?
I got caught in the rain.
- It's not raining.
- Enough with the questions.
Sophie's home now and
that's all that matters.
I'm sorry to have wasted your
time, Roxy. I feel really stupid.
Diane, does the name Hoc
mean anything to you?
Hoc? I I don't know any Hoc.
I've got to get Sophie something to eat.
She turns into a total
nightmare when she's hungry.
Code Blue in Bay 16.
Repeat, we have a Code Blue in Bay 16.
All doctors to emergency.
Code Blue in Bay 16.
Repeat, we have a Code Blue in Bay 16.
I'm starting to think this whole
thing was a big bloody mistake.
Let my ego get the better of me.
Yeah, wouldn't be the first time.
Oh, God, to think you were
in the middle of all this.
You're not careful, it can fuck you up.
Yeah, I remember hearing
you pace the house at night.
You hated being home.
Couldn't wait to get
back in the thick of it.
I was an insomniac.
How'd you sleep in Khe Sanh?
I actually spent some time
in the Vietnamese community,
not long after Mum died.
Was kind of a personal project.
I, uh I emailed you
a bunch of my photos.
Did you ever get a
chance to look at them?
Yeah. I'm just a travel
photographer, so
So, I, uh spoke to my editor.
There's another boat leaving
out of Dunedin in a week.
So, I pushed my deadline.
You'll never get this
done on your own. It's
- Liz, that's that's great
- Don't get all soppy.
Might need a bed to crash in, though.
We've got a lot to do.
You go to lots of funerals
for the free food?
What? No.
This is my first
patient's funeral.
Thanks for coming.
Since, uh yesterday,
everything's gone back to normal.
I haven't seen a single
strange or unnatural thing,
and I'd like to keep it that way.
Well, great.
I better
- keep mingling.
- Yep.
Oh, shit.
I know what it is. One of Quang's souls.
- Where's Stella?
- What?
The fish is on the hair comb.
That's why ba ngoai gave it to me.
It's so kind of you to come.
I really appreciate it.
- Yes?
- Ba ngoai's bone hairpiece.
The one with the painting
of the fisherman on it.
You wearing it?
Well, of course, darling.
In honour of Ma.
- Where are you?
- I'm in the garden.
Stay there.
What's going on?
Stella? Stella!
The hair comb. Where is it?
It was
I found Thao's Aunt, Mrs Chau.
She came here as a refugee.
Lives in a nursing home in Springvale.
So you spoke to her?
Did she say how Thao was?
Where he is? Is he still in Vietnam?
Thao's dead.
He was picked up by the Communists
in the days after the war ended.
They tied him to a lamp
post outside his house.
They tortured him and
cut off his tongue.
But his sons, they got out.
Tom lives in California.
Works for a big company.
And James, he lives here in Melbourne.
- And Thao's wife?
- Giang.
She died, in childbirth.
Just after Thao was killed.
The baby died, too.
When Saigon fell, everything changed.
The world ended that
day for many people.
Neil, Clare Nguyen here.
I'm at the gallery.
Just checking in to see how you're
going with the last of those photos.
Nothing turned up today
and, well, we've got the
press preview coming up,
so, um just give us a call.
Mrs Nguyen.
- Can I help you?
- You in charge of this?
You, uh actually
shouldn't be in here.
My name is Doctor Tran. I work
at the West General Hospital.
You've been sending me letters
I have a lot of Vietnamese patients.
Some old. Veterans of the war.
Some younger. A lot of them
know grief, Mrs Nguyen.
First, they lost the
war, then their home.
My wife came here in a boat.
No food. Hardly any water.
For eight days, they floated
aimlessly on that ocean.
A lot of them died.
Many children.
- I'm sorry.
- I worry about my patients.
I worry about my wife.
I worry about how those photos
on those walls make them feel!
Row, row, row your boat ♪
Gently down the stream ♪
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ♪
Life is but a dream ♪
Where's Sophie?
She just seems a bit distant.
Are you sure she's not on drugs?
Adderall. Ritalin.
You know, a lot of students
are doing it these days.
It helps them with their concentration.
Sophie's a good student.
I have a sixth sense when it
comes to a guilty conscience.
She's definitely hiding something.
Row, row, row your boat ♪
Gently down the stream ♪
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily ♪
Life is but a dream ♪
Ethan! Ethan!
Thanks, Aunt Soph. I'll take over.
Hey, let's get you out before
you turn into a big giant prune.
You okay?
What do you want from me?
I wanted to get you out.
I did, your whole family.
I looked for you, I swear.
But everything was so chaotic.
Excuse me?
Let's do it.
I need to try and contact
my grandmother again.
On one condition.
You go for a drink with me.
His name's Thao.
I don't know what he wants.
- That is mine!
- Sir
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