Synopsis:Ben Shaw qualifies as a care worker in the 1980's. At the same time he starts a relationship with Kathryn Wheeler who in a short space of time strips him of any rational capacity to make any moral or emotional judgments in his professional life. And his personal life starts to unravel. Together they descend into domestic chaos. Kathryn controls Ben with a vivid erotic charge. For his part Ben is swept up in obsessional capitulation. Though he has the ability to affect and improve the lives of his patients, very soon his maverick methods lead to a confrontation with the hospital's disciplinary committee. He has to choose between his work and his relationship.
Bed in the Straw is the character study of a man caught and destroyed by obsessive codependency. Focusing on the recovery of a handful of patients while observing a relationship in the throes of meltdown, the story is highly dramatic with moments of humor and pathos. Evenhanded and non-judgmental in its approach, the characters are drawn in a raw and emotionally honest way.
The title alludes to a number of feral children who were brought back to civilization and failed to respond to rehabilitation. The window of opportunity for human potential had been lost. They were, and would always remain, animals. This screenplay suggests that sometimes a bed in the straw is preferable to wasted years trying to humanize anyone whose time has past.