Bagdad Cafe (1987)


Bagdad Cafe (1987)

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FADE IN: Introduce Hero in her Ordinary World: Jasmin not getting on with her husband.

Symbol of the Transformation: the coffee maker.

Call to Adventure: Jasmin leaves her husband.

Journey to the First Threshold: Jasmin walking along the Mojave desert freeway.

Foreshadow of the Journey: the sky; the barman stops.

Resisting the pull back to the Ordinary World: hubby comes looking for her; Jasmin hides.

New World of the First Threshold: The Bagdad café and the characters within.

Threshold Guardian: Cahuenga and Sal.

Refused entry into the First Threshold: "no beer; no coffee."

Fish out of water: hubby has snuff.

Introduce Shape Shifter: Brenda.

Develop characters and relationships: Brenda, Sal, Cox et al.

Refusal of the Journey: "take that back! What we need is a real coffee machine, not some toy."

Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Sal leaves Brenda.

Introduce Ally: Phyllis.

Develop Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Brenda's crying.

Hero arrives at the First Threshold; Threshold Guardian: Jasmin arrives and wipes sweat; Brenda wipes tears..

Refusal: "are you sure you don't want me to call you a cab?"

Meeting the Mentor: "hello stranger…"

Beginning of the Transformation: Jasmin in her room, gets undressed; no normal clothes available.

Characters in this World: Debbie and the trucker.

Inner Cave: inside the café: saved by the Mentor: Cox pours Jasmin coffee.

Symbol of the Transformation: Brenda doesn't let Jasmin hold the baby.

Guided by the Mentor: Cox: "planning on staying for a while…"

Expectation: Jasmin in her room, looking out the window.

Reminder of the Challenges: "Phyllis! Clean room 7"; "Salomo, take care of your son!"

Refusal of the Physical Separation: Brenda calls Arnie, the local cop.

Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Sal is watching.

Foreshadow of the Journey: Jasmin starts cleaning.

Developing characters and relationships: Phyllis, Salomo, Cox, Debbie etc.

Pushed to the Physical Separation: Arnie can't tell Jasmin to leave – she's there legit; Jasmi wants to pay; "you mean you're staying?" "Yes."

Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Sal is watching Brenda.

Characters and relationships developed: Debbie tattooing, Cahuenga, Jasmin, Phyllis, Brenda. "do you mind if I pitch my tent here?" etc.

Pushing forward: Jasmin gives the baby a toy.

Trial 1: cleaning the office.

Transformation: holding the baby.

Resisting the Transformation: Brenda angry that the office has been changed.

Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Sal is watching.

Accepting the Transformation: Brenda doesn't really want Jasmin to put everything back where it was; speaking respectfully to "Mr Cox."

Proactively changing: Brenda tells Phyllis to clear up her stuff.

The World of the Transformation: the Bagdad Café at night.

Developing characters and relationships: everyone in the café except Jasmin.

Resisting Trial 2: Salomo and Phyllis dislike Jasmin; Brenda begins to treat her more respectfully.

Pulled back to the old World: Jasmin remembers her husband; looks at her things.

Trial 2: Phyllis becomes a friend; in Jasmin's bedroom.

Trial 3: listening to Salomo play.

Foreshadow of the Sword: Cox watches Jasmin.

Symbol of Transformation progressing: Salomo gives the baby to Jasmin.

Meeting the Oracle and being led to the Sword: Cox wants to paint Jasmin.

Journey to the Sword: learning magic.

Journey to the Sword: Jasmin being painted with full clothing.

Resistance to the Sword: Brenda gets angry; "get you own children!"

Shape Shifter's Romantic Challenge: Sal is watching.

Journey to the Sword: "my husband left me a week ago;" the rainbow; Jasmin helps serve the dishes; does magic tricks.

Journey to the Sword: Jasmin being painted with less clothing.

Journey to the Sword: Jasmin doing more magic.

Journey to the Sword: Jasmin being painted with even less clothing.

Journey to the Sword: Jasmin doing more magic; the flowers bloom.


Seizing the Sword: Café full; Jasmin being painted naked. Marker of change: Jasmin gets a tattoo.

Near Death Experience: Jasmin not allowed to work.

Atonement with the Father: neither wants to leave.

Magic Flight: "goodbye Miss Brenda, goodbye Miss Jasmin."

Apotheosis: the magic's gone.

Refusal of the Return: the boomerang hits the water tank.

Ultimate Boon: the picture of Jasmin on the wall; she's part of the Bagdad café.

Crossing the Return Threshold: Jasmin comes back; greetings; Brenda and Jasmin together.

Master of the Two Worlds: the show.

Freedom to Live: Cox proposes.


by Kal Bashir