Blue Denim (1959) Script

We're all going to miss Hector, Son.


Only, why did you have to do it while I was in school?

You heard what the vet said. He was an old dog— old and suffering.

I know. It's just— You get up in the morning.

You got a dog.

You come home.

No dog.

For Pete's sake, you wanna say good-bye at least.

I was trying to spare you that good-bye.

Sure. Sure?

What does that mean, sure?

Sure. Good. You spared me.

Mother? Mother, where are you?

In here, dear. Oh.

Which purse with this dress?

This one?

Or this one?

The small one.

But, darling, don't chew gum in a semi-formal.

It creates an impression.

But Axel says it's good exercise for your teeth.

He says that if everybody exercised their teeth twice a day, he wouldn't have any practice.

And if he didn't have any practice, we wouldn't be able to get married.

Oh, Mother... wouldn't it be awful not to be able to marry Axel?

Oh, oh, oh...


I'm so happy.

Are you? Terribly.

Isn't it awful?

What are you two bawling about?

We're just happy. Mm-hmm.


Dad, what's the matter?

Nothing's the matter.

Oh, dear.

What does Mrs. Wilmaker do with the matches, eat them?

Mrs. Wilmaker didn't come today. Her husband's sick.

He's accident prone, and something fell on his head.

Lillian, run, get your father some matches.

And, dear, the gum.

All right.

Tell me.

Jessie... the boy blames me about his dog.

It's just that you didn't tell him first.

You should have consulted him.

A good officer looks after his men.

But your not an officer anymore.

And Arthur isn't one of your men.

He's your son.

What's wrong with the boy, Jessie?

Why won't he talk to me?

When he was little, we got along fine.

He talked, I talked. We got along.

Now, if I so much as say hello, he hates me.

Oh, Malcolm, he doesn't hate you.

It's just a phase he's going through.

What does that mean, a phase?

Oh, I don't know. It's just something you say about boys Arthur's age, and everybody's supposed to understand.

All I understand is a few weeks in an army camp wouldn't harm that young man.

Might shape him up a little.

Malcolm, he's still a boy.

All right, he's still a boy, but he hasn't got much time left.

Remember my sock I looked all over for last month?

Hector took it.

He had it in his bed.

My sock.

You see?

Dad, Arthur was only three when he first got Hector.

Well, Lillian, don't just stand there. Light your father.

Oh, sure. Here, Dad.

Hold still.

Lillian. It's Axel!

Who? Axel Sorenson, the boy she got engaged to last night.

Oh, Axel. And what's wrong with Axel?

Nothing's wrong with Axel. Answer the door!

Darling. Darling.

Why, you little rat.

Lillian! What a thing to say to Axel.

It isn't Axel, it's Ernie.

Good evening, Mrs. Bartley.

Good evening, Ernie.

Major Bartley. Ernie.

How are all the nuts at your hardware store, Major?

Not so good, Ernie. They bolted.

The, uh, nuts bolted.

How are you, Lillian?

At the moment, contaminated.

You shouldn't be rude to Ernie when you're all dressed up, dear.

That's all right, Mrs. Bartley.

I just say to myself, "Ernie, there's a girl with a tiny mind.

Have compassion."

Lame brain, your crutch is here.

Well, what are you two boys up to tonight, homework?

Oh, yes, sir.

Arthur's a little shaky in biology, so I thought I'd give him a workout.

What exactly is biology, Ernie?

Well, it's the, uh, study of, uh...

Well, you take this frog, and you split it up the middle, and you check the differences.

What differences?

Um, well, its sex, for one thing.

I see. Well, if that's biology, I think it's very nice of Arthur to be shaky in it.

Yes, ma'am.

Oh, I'll get it. Oh, no, you won't.

Darling. Oh. Mmm.

Hi, Doc.

Oh, hi, there, small fry. Hello, Axel.

Good evening, Mrs. Bartley.

Axel, how are you tonight? Fine, thanks, Major.

Congratulations, Doc. I hope you know what you're getting.

Ernie. I sure do.

Come on, honey. All set?

Is it true that all dentists are sadists? Of course not, Ernie.

Only with some of our patients.

Come up to the office sometime. I'll show you what I mean.

Hey, nice. Do your own work, Doc?

They'll all fall out before you're 40, anyway.

Good night. Don't be late.

Good night, darling.

Good night, you rat.

It's wonderful to think those two are gonna get married.

Oh, Ernie, do you really think so?

Oh, yes, ma'am.

It's gonna save two other people.

Oh, hi, Art. Hi.

Listen, instead of homework tonight, how would you two kids like to take in a movie with me, huh?

Uh, well— We'd love to, sir.

Only, uh, mid-semesters are coming up, and...

Well, I know. But just for one night.

Well, never mind.

I didn't know you were having trouble with your school work, Arthur.

Well, I— Oh, he isn't.

He's swell in English, straight A.

It's only biology.


Straight A in English, huh? I didn't realize that.

Why didn't you tell me, Son?

Well, it doesn't mean anything.

It wouldn't get you very far in the army, but it shows you have an aptitude for...

Well, I don't know, something.

We'll talk about it sometime, huh?

Sure, Dad, anytime. You ready, Ernie?

Right. Okay, Major?

Oh, no, Ernie.

Come on, now.

That's better.


Private Bartley, fall in.

I'll see you later.

Don't work too hard.

How many damn cards you want?

Give me two.

You betting, Art?


Two blue ones.

Oh, yeah?

Tell you what I'm gonna do.

Gonna see that, and I'm gonna bump you two.

I'll have a look.

What do ya got?

Aces up, my boy.

Three sixes.

I had to keep you honest.

So that nutty old sister of yours has wrapped up Doc Sorenson.


All along, he looked like a loser.

These days, it takes talent to learn how to slip and slide around.

Do you know at school, one out of six guys is going steady?

That so?

One out of six, trapped.

It's one thing for a guy to go way out.

But these guys ain't never gonna get back.

Not me.

Me neither.

Well, it's lucky in a way.

Take a girl like your sister.

Three red.

I'm out. What about my sister?

The way I see it, Sorenson probably saved her.

Saved her? From what?

It's a crummy world there.

Some old white slaver could have come along and picked her off like a naked grape.

Lillian? Sure, Lillian.

It happens every day. Girls just disappear.

Yeah, but Lillian— Okay, split a gut.

But I could tell you stuff that would curl your teeth.

This town's full of it.

Gambling, dope, prostitution, smuggling, illegal operations.

How many tickets do you want?

Give me two.

Illegal operations? Sure.

As a matter of fact, I had an occasion last week to help a fella out of a jam.

Oh, what are you talking about? That guy that lives next door to my aunt.

Getting drafted next month, and his girl's in trouble.

And who does he have to come to... to steer him to a doctor?



No kidding.

You mean you actually know...

Routine stuff there.

Boy, from now on, I'm gonna be really careful.

Yeah, a guy's gotta be.

Hey, did your old man ever take you into the bedroom and give you the little talk?

He tried. Mine did too. He really did.

Only he waited till I was 12.

All I could do to keep a straight face.

Well, mine didn't say much.

Too embarrassed.

Yeah, that's old soldiers for you.

If they can't give it to you out of a manual, they're stuck.

Ernie, will you do me a favor?

Name it.

Well, just quit stringing my old man along, will you?

Well, what do you mean?

Making a fool out of him and all that saluting stuff.

Oh, he didn't get it.

Are you trying to tell me my old man's stupid?

No! Hell, I kid the pants of my old man all the time.

Well, I don't like it.

Those old guys got feelings too.

Okay, don't get sore.

Come on, play cards.


Oh, it's you. That's right, just old Janet.

Hi, Ernie. You look so funny trying to hide all that stuff.

I thought you were in training for basketball.

I am!

I only had one.

Come on, have another.


Go ahead, have another.

Break the bottle over your head for all I care.

Who you making up for?

You, dear one.

Oh, stop it. I'm drooling all over myself.

Makeup helps my morale.

Your father still get spares every time you wear lipstick?

He— He just doesn't like it, that's all.

Um, where's Hector?

He's gone. Gone? Where?

You gotta be hit by a truck.

Oh, it's okay, Ernie.

Dad took him away and had him gassed while I was at school.

Without your permission?

I was being spared.

Deal 'em.

I'm sorry.

It's all right.

Hey, Sputnik, go off it, huh?

Wait a minute, Ernie. You're the reason I came over.

I need an excuse for cutting classes this afternoon.

I went to the movies. Get your father to write it.

I can't. You know my father.

You mean to tell me he won't even let you go to the movies?

It's the cutting classes part.

Don't forget, he's a college professor.

So what? He's on their side.

Here's a sample of his handwriting.

Well, what was wrong with you today?

A cold?

A cold is so undramatic.

Now she wants something dramatic.


It's gotta be convincing.

Migraine headaches. Yeah!

What are they, exactly?

My Aunt Shirley gets chronic ones.

Yeah, they're great! You throw up all over the place.

People get them all the time. It's a permanent excuse.

Okay. Make it migraine.




This will be a snap.

Your old man writes like a baby.

Hey, give me some air, will ya?

Artistic temperament.

Hector was an awfully old dog.


It's probably a good thing even.


Okay, take it away.

Ernie, you've done it again.


You've got a brilliant career as a forger ahead of you.

Believe me, I've thought about it.

The way I see it... the life of crime is your only chance to be an individualist today.

He's off again. No, it's true.

Everybody wants to get tied up with some big corporation.

Nobody ever wants to do something on his own anymore.

Except artists and composers and people like that.

Do you got a damn match? Yeah.

What's your damn pleasure?

Give me some damn time to have a damn look, will ya, damn it?

You know something? You boys kill me.

This big act you put on... down here playing poker, drinking beer, talking tough. Look, Snow White.

Eat a poison apple, will ya?

Attention, skinnies of the world.

Hey! Do you want a tempting torso?

Hey! Give me that magazine!

Oh! Oh!

Arthur? Arthur?

What's the matter, Mom?

We heard a noise.

A noise?

I knocked over a chair, that's all.

Oh. What's that smell?


The furnace is smoking a little.

Oh, dear.

I have to call Mr. Thompson.

No, Mom, I'll fix it. Don't worry.

Oh, all right, dear. Your father and I are going up.

Don't study too late now. Okay, Mom, I won't.

You all right? Fine.

I didn't mean to hurt you. It's all right.

Well, maybe it's broken. Too bad.

We'll have to shoot her. Move it.


Ernie, where are you going?

Traffic's too heavy down here.

A guy can't hardly have a quiet evening anymore.

Yeah, but it's still early. You know something?

Janet is the type of dame which when she grows up wonders why her husband goes to stag parties.

It really did hurt.


But it doesn't now.

I just don't like to see you the way you are when Ernie's around.

What do you mean the way I am? You know, pretending so.

Who's pretending?

Ernie and me just happen to like a beer and a hand of poker every now and then.

Who do you think you are? My mother, for Pete's sake?

I'm sorry, Arthur.

Look, can't you call me Art like everybody else?

All right.

I'm sorry, Art.

All right. I'm sorry, Janet.

Here's your excuse. Oh, thanks.

So you pretended about your ankle just to get rid of Ernie, huh?

Oh, no, it hurt. It really did.

But not much.

I guess I pretended too.

Like you said, about the poker and the beer...

I don't really like it.

Why'd you do it?

Well, I guess it's just easier to put on an act.

Does that sound nutty?

Sometimes... if you come out with what you're really thinking... people just laugh at you.

I wouldn't laugh.

How do you know? I haven't said anything yet.


I've been watching you for a long time.

In class, around school.

I mean, well...

Anybody who looks at you, they see right off, there's a somebody.

Not just any old nobody, but a somebody.

Well, you know, I'd like to be a somebody.


Then an engineer maybe, or a lawyer.

I don't know just yet, but...

A somebody.

That's it.

Are you going to the basketball game Friday night?

I don't know.

Well, I can't take you, 'cause I'm playing.

I'll be there.



It's no good if you ask.

Our noses got in the way.


Well, I guess...

Oh, no, don't go. I have to.

Father's picking me up at Marion's.

Oh, gosh, I'm late now. Tell him you were with me.

Would take too much explaining.

Well, uh, good night.

Good night.

Janet— Yeah?


Thank you. Good night.


Did you hurt it again?


I was pretending again.

Daddy? Yes?

Oh, Dad. The cocoa is almost ready.

I didn't know it was so late.

Did you stop at Marion's? I did.

I'll do that.

If you'll get the marshmallows.

I went to Eileen Walker's instead.

I took a chance and stopped at Eileen's too.

I went to see Arthur Bartley.

To his house? Why not?

Arthur's special, Dad.

I'm sure Arthur's a perfectly nice boy, but that isn't the point.

It's a question of deportment.

A young lady does not go to a boy's house.

She invites him to her own.

Daddy, I can't invite boys here.

Why not?


You scare them.

I scare them?


With words like deportment.

Boys just aren't used to it.

You mean boys aren't used to manners?

Gentleness? Thoughtfulness?

No, Daddy, I don't mean that. I meant...

You're very like your mother, my dear.

I'm trying to keep you that way.

I don't know what mother was like, but I can't be like her.

The way you talk, she must have been an angel or a saint or something.

She was. But I'm not!

My dear, you're just like her.

Except for the lipstick.

Oh, Daddy, don't you see?

Mother was long ago. I'm now.

I'm trying to bring you up the way I think she would have.

Yes, Daddy.

I miss her.

Ah, throw the bum out!


Isn't Hobie marvelous? Yeah, he's a dog.

If you don't like basketball, why did you bother to come?

I go to accidents too.


Come on, Hobie! We're one point behind!

How much time? Three seconds.

Come on, Hobie!


He made it.

Baby doll, he missed.

Great game, Hobie!

Don't forget to call me, Marion.

Good night. Bye-bye.

What are you doing here? Hello.

I thought you had gone.

I was just, you know, practicing.

It's another game anyway.

It's pitiful.

Come on, I'll walk you home.


Look, we're almost past your house, and I forgot to notice.

I noticed when I was walking you home.

Oh, that's all right. You don't have to come the rest of the way with me.

I don't want you going around in the dark by yourself.

Arthur, can I ask you something?


Are we going steady?

Well, if you want to.

Oh, yes.

Now, can I ask you something?

Only don't get sore.

Something personal.

About other boys?

Well, a guy's bound to wonder.

You're jealous.

No, I'm not. Yes, you are.

You don't have to worry, Arthur.

Not that I blame you or anything.

I'm broad minded, but— I never...

I've thought about it.

And that's biologically normal.

But whenever boys try anything, I always get scared.

Or disgusted.

Do you think I've got a sex blockade or something?

No. you simply didn't like those other guys, that's all.

I wish I were 18 right this minute and knew all about everything.


You left your compact the other night.

I'll go get it.


We shouldn't be watching.

It's all right.

They're engaged for Pete's sake.

Good night. Good night, honey.

Thank you.

Good night.


You'd better get my compact.


Have you... been with lots of girls?

Oh, the regular amount for a guy my age, I guess.

Is it...

Was it like you thought it would be?

More or less.

When did it happened, did you... like those other girls?

No, a man doesn't have to.

Arthur, let's not talk about it anymore.


Arthur, I don't mind about those girls.

I'm glad— I'm glad you know everything because...

What's the matter?

Don't look at me.

Now, why did I say a dumb thing like that?

Is it my fault?

No. Then what?

I never either.

I made it all up about other girls.

I don't know anything.

I knew.

You big phony.

♪ Oh, well, I need a lot of lovin' ♪

♪ And I guess I always will ♪

♪ But, baby, now I know ♪

♪ There's only one Who fills the bill ♪

♪ And you say, you, baby ♪

♪ Ooh, baby ♪

♪ You know it's you, baby ♪

♪ You, baby ♪

♪ Who but you ♪

♪ Could shake me up The way that you do? ♪

♪ You, baby ♪

♪ No one but you ♪

♪ It isn't Eva ♪

♪ No, no, no, no ♪

♪ It isn't Lana ♪

♪ No, no, no, no ♪

♪ It isn't Gina ♪

♪ No, no, no, no ♪

♪ It's not Rita ♪

♪ No, no, no, no ♪

♪ It isn't any of those ♪

♪ I must admit it ♪

♪ 'Cause baby, baby, baby, baby ♪

♪ Oh, you did it ♪

♪ I saw a wise old owl ♪

♪ Just sitting in a tree ♪

♪ I told him that a gal ♪

♪ Had made a monkey outta me ♪

♪ And he said ♪

♪ Who, baby? ♪

♪ I told him ♪

♪ You, baby ♪

♪ Who but you ♪

♪ Could shake me up the way That you do? ♪

♪ Who, baby? ♪

♪ No one but you ♪

♪ Who but you ♪

♪ Could shake me up The way that you do? ♪

♪ Who, baby? ♪

♪ No one but you ♪

♪ No one but you ♪

Cherie, you were wonderful.

Ernie, you were terrible.

What do you expect for a buck, Pat Boone?

Come on, baby.

And I said, "Lillian, you only got engaged in March."

Oh, thank you, dear.

"It's just the beginning of June. Now, what's three months?

It's hardly time to turn around."

She said, "Mother, three months is a long engagement."

And I said, "Long?

Your father and I were engaged for three years."

Weren't we, Malcolm? Yes, Jessie.

And it wasn't long enough. Malcolm!

I mean, I was a second lieutenant. I couldn't afford her.

I was an associate professor. I couldn't afford marriage either.

What did they put in this stuff? It's just the papaya juice, dear.

The Major and I have grown very fond of your Janet.

I'm rather fond of her myself.

Just you wait. She'll ruin you.

Ruin me? How?

Professor, have you any idea how much a wedding costs?

Just a plain, ordinary wedding?

That's still a long way off for me.

You think sending up a guided missile is expensive?

Wait'll you launch a 19-year-old daughter.

Hi. Hi.

Look, I know I'm not the greatest dancer in the world, but...

You're fine.

For Pete's sake, you don't act very glad to see me.

I'm sorry, Arthur.

Do you mind if we don't dance anymore?

Hey, listen, we're having a party at my house Friday night.

Can you two come?

That's very nice— A party? Sure!

Thanks, Cherie. Ought to be a blast.

Yeah, don't expect too much of a blast.

Her mother's planning it.

You don't have to worry about Mother.

She's not gonna be allowed out of the back room.

Hey, what's with Janet?

I don't know.


But they don't tell you how to stop it.

You ought to see a doctor just to be sure.

I am sure.

Well, you ought to see one anyway.

All right. I'll go to one who doesn't know us.

What'll you...

What'll your father say?

Tell Daddy?

Oh, no.

I can't. I really can't.

Well, you can't hide it forever.

I can't tell him.

It would kill him.

Please, Janet.

Arthur, it would kill him.


It would kill mine too.

They believe in me. They trust me.

Oh, sorry.

Excuse us. I didn't know this pew was occupied.

Come on, Hobie.

They saw us together.

Well, they didn't hear what we said.

Everybody knows we're going steady.

I know, but now I feel so ashamed.

Jan, please, don't cry. It won't help.

What will help? I don't know.

Don't get mad.

I'm not mad at you.

It's just— Why did I let it happen?

Why did I let it happen?

It wasn't you.

It wasn't you at all.

It was me.

Janet? Oh, it's Daddy.

Janet, where are you?

Right here, Daddy.

Don't do anything, you know, crazy.

I'll call you tomorrow morning first thing.

Well, Cinderella, it's midnight.

Time to put on your other shoes and go home.

Yes, Daddy. Good night, Arthur.

Good night, sir.

You do solemnly swear that the facts stated in this application are true?

I do. Two dollars.

Where's your dollar?

Congratulations. Next.

We want a license.

You live in the city?

No, we're from out of town.

Fill out this form.

Hey, wait a minute. How old are you?

Oh, how old do you have to be?

If you're under 21, the consent of one parent.

Under 18, court order.

Well, that's okay. I'm 21.

Have you got proof?

What? Proof of age... a birth certificate, a driver's license.

No, but I am 21, I swear.

Now, don't try to kid me. You've never even shaved.

Move on, please.

Wait! Are you giving out licenses for shaving...

Let's go! We're in a hurry!

Look, mister— He is 21...

Come on! Snap it up, will ya? Give us a break, will ya?

Somebody give me a break. He might change his mind.

You gotta believe me. I'll believe you when I see your birth certificate.

Now, move on, please. Come on, Arthur.

We're over 21. You want proof?

Aren't they the cutest things?

Here, I got something for you.

No, that's all right. You keep it.

Look, honey, when it's your fourth you don't need flowers.

This is when you know it's strictly for love.

Come on.

What are we gonna do?

Some countries, kids our age are already married and raising families.

Could we go to one of those countries maybe?

Maybe like Mexico? Are you crazy?

Don't you see? We've got to get a plan.

Daddy says you should state your problem, then bring all your intellectual resources to bear.

Jan, shut up a minute, will ya?

Maybe I could go to my Aunt Clara's.

I mean, she's over 200 miles away.

No, no.

She'd tell my father.

Maybe I could just disappear...

Jan, I'm trying to think.

Or drown myself.

Listen, don't say things like that.

I know you feel bad.

But you shouldn't feel like you're all alone.

I mean, I'm with you, Jan.

I'll take care of you.

Okay, Arthur.


Oh, yes, Mrs. Sorenson.


Oh, dear, you do? Where's Arthur?

In the cellar. I'm talking.


Arthur! What?

Did you pick up my shoes? What shoes?

The ones I'm having dyed to go with my yellow.

I forgot. Well, go get them!

Get them yourself. I'm busy.

Well, if we must, we must.

Don't you worry about it. We'll muddle through somehow.

Yes. Good-bye.

Oh, dear. What's the matter?

Oh, that was Axel's mother. She says they have to invite Mr. Sorenson's crazy Aunt Margaret, which means we'll have to invite your crazy Aunt Bidda.

So Aunt Bidda slips a little bourbon into her cocoa once in a while.

What's wrong with that? I suppose you're right.

When you think of some of the things some people do...

Mother, Arthur won't get my shoes at the shoe man's.

Arthur! Get the shoes, dear.

Why can't she get them? they're her feet!

Arthur! On the double, Son.

Ladies, will young Arthur Bartley get the shoes?

Or will he just stand there?

Tune in next year for another exciting episode...

Shut up!

Arthur, did you hear me? That was an order.

Now, dear, I'll get the shoes. I have to go by there anyhow.

Never mind, Arthur. I'm getting them.

Thanks, Mom.

That's the way to treat 'em. Put them out.

You know something? You're getting on my nerves lately.

I don't get it. You drag me over to talk about something serious...

Sit down.

No. I think I'll go home.

Sit down, I said!

I do wanna talk to you.

Only... Yeah?

Well, remember what you said a couple of months ago?

About that doctor?

Doctor? What doctor?

You know, the one on Main.

The one for girls. Don't act square.

You said you helped a guy out who was in trouble.

Oh, yeah.

Yeah, I remember.

Well, I know somebody who has to get hold of that doctor.

You don't wanna get mixed up in a thing like that.

I mean, you can get thrown in jail.

You helped that other guy.

Yeah, but that's a crime.

Why, it's murder.

Always yakking.

Always running off at the mouth!

Tell me! Tell you what?

The doctor!

Who is he? Where does he live?

You're choking me. You're gonna tell!

Let go, you stupid...

You're not stupid, are you, Ernie?

Know everything! Know all the answers!

Just ask Ernie! You're killing me!

Tell me! I can't! I was lying!

You were lying.


I don't know why.

I just thought of saying it, and out it came.


Don't be mad, Art.

Look, maybe I got a big-shot complex or something, huh?

Well, it did happen the way I said, only I just heard about it.

The guy didn't come to me at all.

Ernie, what am I gonna do?

What are you gonna do?

How come you're holding your neck?

No reason.

I'm sorry. I guess I just don't know my own strength sometimes.

Yeah, forget it, will ya?

You got real problems.

You... and Janet?

Who said anything about Janet? Not again, Art.

Don't tell anybody, Ernie.


Nah, I'm not going to swear.

What do you got a buddy for if you can't trust him?


Well, uh, how far along is she?

Almost three months.

That's why I got to find a doctor quick.

Help me, Ernie.

Maybe I still can find out.

This guy I heard about went to some drugstore on the other side of town.

Here you are, honey.

That's all, except you don't do anything till a certain party gives you a call.

I'm only the middleman, you understand.

Any questions?


How much?

Century and a half, cash in advance.

A hundred and fifty dollars?

Tell you what. Next time around, the little lady gets a discount, okay?

Want to call it off, Jack?

I didn't think so.

Come on, Ernie. Let's get out of here.

Want a soda?

No. No, thanks.

What's the matter, afraid of germs?

Give you $5.00.

For the air rifle?

The air rifle and the bike.

Well, the air rifle alone costs more than that.

You come to a junkyard, kid, you get junk prices.

What do you mean, junk?

This bike's practically new.

I mean, if it had new tires and a little paint.

They'd give us $20 for it at the bicycle shop.

You kids already been to the bicycle shop, or else you wouldn't have come here.

Ten bucks.

Now another minute, it goes down to nine.

Take it or leave it.

But please— Ah, you better take it.

We have all those empty bottles to round up.

All right. It's a deal.

Mom— Lillian, stand still.

I can't. I'm getting dizzy.


They say that if you stand still like this too long, your inner ear goes cockeyed.

What would Axel say if you came down the aisle tomorrow with one side sagging? Hold that.

I may faint.

Brides haven't fainted for years.

I mean now.

Janet, when your turn comes, take my advice and elope.

You're being hysterical, dear.

She doesn't mean it, Janet.

Why, marriage is the great moment of a girl's life.

Everything leads up to it.

Everything afterwards is just routine.

What's routine?


I mean formulas and diaper services and...

Where'd that girl go?

Mercurochrome, PTA, you know.

A woman's existence.

Twenty, 25, 30.


That's 52.30.

Means we still need...

You any good at math?

Uh, nearly 98 bucks.

Might as well be a million.


Did you, uh, bring your dough?


Your bike's gone.

Uh, it was falling apart anyway.

Six bucks.

Swell. All we need now is 92.

Daddy probably would have given me next week's allowance, but I didn't want to ask.

No, never mind. We'll be all right.

What do you mean, we'll be all right?

Well, I got an idea, that's all.


I'll tell you when I'm ready, Ernie.

I can't now.

Jan... are you all set?

I mean if the call comes tomorrow, say?



I guess that stupid girl's nuts about you.

I guess.

But you're not so nuts about her, huh? You know better than that.

You got a funny way of showing it. What do you mean?

Look, Art, I can stand around and be your stooge, or I can be your friend and tell you what I really think.

You are my friend.


If it was me, I'd give up this whole idea.

Well, how can we?

What else can we do?

You know what.

We've been over that.

I can't.

You've got to.

It's no good, Art.

It's murder.

Will you stop saying that?

I've got to take care of Janet, Ernie.

I don't know how to take care of a baby too.

Besides, it hasn't even got a heart or a name yet.

It isn't anything yet.

It's alive, isn't it?

Art, these things are dangerous.

I mean the doctors that do it aren't so hot sometimes.

I don't want to talk about it.

It'll turn out all right.

It's got to.


Say he uses a dirty knife or something and Janet got blood poisoning.

Shut up!

Or he slipped up somehow and killed her, even.

Will you shut up? Then what would you do?

Say you let your girl die because you— you were scared to tell your folks?

I'm not scared.

It's only they trust me.

Like I told Jan.

You're kidding yourself, Art.

And you're scared.

But just come right out and tell them?

Why not?

Maybe— Maybe start off by telling them how much you sort of like Janet... and then lead into the baby part... casually.


Yeah, you're right.

But what do I do, Ernie, just— go up right now?


And just—just tell them.

I'm not even going to stop to think about it.

Art, I'll wait here.



Dad, are you home?

Mom? Yes, dear.

Mom, where are you?

Up here.

Mom, I want to talk to you.

I am going to faint.

Mom, I got to talk to you.

Don't bring outside feet next to a white dress, dear.

Right now. All right, talk.

I've started to buzz.

Doesn't she look lovely? Mom, this is important.

Like every June bride.

You certainly choose your moments.

Now, let's just see how important.

Oh. Oh, dear.

You've done something dreadful.

Look at you. You're trembling.

No, I'm not trembling. It's...

I just want to ask you certain questions, that's all.

What questions?

Well, I...

You know, things to do with being married and having families and all that.

You worried about Lillian?

No, Mom. It's...


It's you.

Yes, it's me.

Oh, Arthur. I'm so glad you came to me.

Lillian. Hmm?

Are you through with that book?

What book?

Don't be thick, dear. You know.

Oh, that book.

But, Mom, I don't want to read a book.


Oh. Yes. I'm through.

Isn't this lovely?

I'm killing two birds with one stone.

This is approved by everybody: doctors, psychiatrists, ministers.

Lillian found it very helpful.


Mom, will you please just...

Aw, things have got you all confused, haven't they, dear?

This will clear everything up. All right?

All right.

Mother, it still sags.

What? Where?



Want something, Son?

Dad, I...

Uh, would you like me to fix you a drink?

If you don't mind.

Dad, I've got something on my mind, and I thought you'd be the one to...

Sure, let's have it. Something at school?

No, it's...

Here you are.


You must have a real problem, boy.

Well, you see...

Malcolm, you home? Yeah!

Go ahead.

Well, the thing is...

Come on up and see Lillian's dress.

What for?

Go on.

You paid for it.

You bet your life I paid for it, and how I paid for it!

You think you got trouble?

I tell you, this wedding tomorrow is going to be my funeral, and all because one day your sister finds a hole in her tooth.

But, Dad, finances is what I wanted to talk to you about.

I mean, if you want to get married...

Married? Don't say another word.

You know what this is?

Your checkbook. Exactly.

Every figure on every stub in this book represents money, money paid out.

That's all you need to know.

But, Dad, couldn't some young couple just starting...

As long as you're thinking about the future, I want you to consider the advantages of the army.

I don't want to push you into anything.

You'll choose your own career.

But the army offers— Malcolm.

Well, why shouldn't he?

The boy will be getting married some day.

They have wonderful facilities for children in the army: playgrounds, swimming pools, gymnasiums...

Yes, everything a boy could ask for: bombs and cannons and machine guns.

What about escalators, Jess?

They have escalators on an army post.

Arthur, I spent 18 years in the army without a single injury a Band-Aid wouldn't take care of.

Three months after your mother talked me into resigning, my leg was in a cast.

Now you're being absurd. You bet it's absurd.

But it didn't happen on an army post.

It happened at Hobson's Department Store.

While your mother's on the 11th floor opening a charge account for things the army had been giving us free, your father's falling down the escalator.

Malcolm, are you coming? Here, put this away, will you, Son?

Just remember, a man these days should have at least $10,000 in the bank before he even looks at a woman.

But, Dad, please just listen. You all shaped up there?

Well, we're in it now.

When they find out, I'm going to tell them I wrote the check.

I better take this down to the drugstore. Why should you have to? It's my job.

You're hooked for the wedding rehearsal. Now look, I don't...

Art, if you don't show up at the rehearsal, they'll know something's up.

You've got to do everything you're supposed to today, the wedding, the reception, and you got to look like you like it.

Does Jan know it's all set for tonight? Yeah.

I wish I was sure we knew what we were doing.

Excuse me.


They treating you all right, George?

Fine. Say, uh, you got a moment?

Malcolm! Excuse me, George.

I want to introduce you.

It's Mr. Sorenson's Aunt Margaret. Who?

Be right with you, George. No worries.

Aunt Margaret?

Oh, Aunt Margaret.

This is my husband, Miss Steele.


I said weddings are rotten. They cost too much.

Now who said you were crazy?

Malcolm! What?

Oh, try some punch, Aunt Margaret?

I tried it. It's bilge.

Here's the cocoa, ma'am.

Oh, thank you. Where's Aunt Bidda?

Oh, Arthur. Arthur, I want you to take...

Mom, I have to see...

Arthur. Mom, I don't have time.

Oh, gosh, I'm sorry.

That's all right, son.

Oh, dear. Can't you ever break anything that isn't part of a set?

Arthur, you've cut yourself.

What are you doing?

I'm letting the blood run back into my heart.

You go right up to the medicine chest and get a Band-Aid.

I can do it in the kitchen, Mom. Upstairs.

Oh, Aunt Bidda, I've been looking for you.

Here's some more cocoa.

Thank you. I'll just— Take it off by myself.

Ready, honey.

Here they come!



Don't forget to write!


Oh, my poor boy, she's gone.

What? Where, Mom? Who? What are you talking about?

Your sister. You didn't even get to kiss her good-bye.



Mom, will you please just leave me alone?

Ernie's waiting for us at the corner.

He said he'd come and tell us when the car comes for me.


Daddy thinks I'm spending the night at Marion's.

I asked him maybe tomorrow night too.

That's just in case...

But don't you worry.

I'll be in school bright and early Monday morning, 9:00 sharp.

No more cutting classes for me.

No, sir.

Arthur, what did you do to your finger?

I just scratched it.

Does it hurt?

Forget it, will you?


Is there anything you want to say to me?

Not even anything?

Janet, I...

Arthur, the guests are leaving.

Where did you put Aunt Margaret's coat?

Arthur, did you hear me?

Hey, Art, the car, it's here.

The coat, the coat. What did I do with the coat?

Mom, listen. Listen to me!

Oh, never mind, dear. We found it.

It's here.

Let's go.

Arthur, I don't want to go. Don't make me go.

But, Jan— I'm scared!

I'm scared I won't ever come back from that place.

I'm scared I'll die and go to hell.

Jan, Jan.

I'm sorry.

I'm being childish.

Why won't you let me come with her? I won't do anything wrong.

Let me come. Please let— No.

Oh, no, please don't.

We have to protect Doctor.


All right.

What are you doing, making it bleed?

She was worried about me because I'd cut my stupid finger.

Yeah, she's crazy about you.

We covered that.

Well, good night, Art. Sweet dreams.

Wait a minute. Where are you going? Stick around.

I said I'd help, and I did, and I'll keep on helping till this whole thing's over.

But I want you to know something.

I'm sorry I got into it.

This whole thing makes me sick. You make me sick.

Ernie, what's the matter? This crybaby act.

You pulling a Band-Aid off your hand, wanting me to stay with you, and right now she's taking that car ride.

I told you they wouldn't listen.

You didn't give them a chance.

You went upstairs, and you said "err" and "ah" and "Dad, I want to talk to you."

Did you once say "Dad, I'm in trouble"?

Did you say that?

You weren't there. If you did...

Did you say "I'm in trouble"? No, I didn't!

Okay, that's all you had to say.

They would have listened to you, but you didn't want them to.

You were too scared they'd hear you.

Get out.

Get out. Do you hear me?

Get out!

Get out of here!

Let her be all right.

Let her be all right.

Let her be all right.

Okay, here's the car.

Thank you.

I'll drive. Where are the keys?

Oh, no. I'll do the driving.

Good-bye, Aunt Bidda.

So glad you could come.

Oh, George, I didn't get a chance to visit with you.

Good night, Jessie.

I'm sorry, Mal.

Yes, George. Thanks.

Good night, Mrs. Bartley.

Good night, Mr. Carr.

I'll send for this stuff in the morning.

Yes, all right. Thank you.

Oh, dear. I don't know whether to have a good cry now and clean all this up later or— Jessie.

Clean now and cry when there's time to enjoy it.

Jess. What is it?

Something wrong?


Serious trouble?

Well, wait till I get my shoes off.

So help me, Jess...

They're off, they're off.

All right, dear.

What's this?

It's a check made out to cash.

Is there something wrong with it?

Yes, I didn't write it.

But it has your name on it.

That's exactly the point.

This afternoon, Arthur walked into the bank and cashed it.


The teller got worried and showed it to George, and George...

Well, there must be some mistake.

There's the phony signature, and Arthur cashed it.

But that's forgery.

And grand larceny.

Well, then that settles it.

This simply hasn't happened at all.

You and I have not raised a thief.

How do we know what he is?

These kids, how do we know anything about them?

Arthur. What are you going to do?

Stay out of this, Jessie. Malcolm, be nice.

Please don't lost your temper.

You know what it does to you.

You and I haven't seen very much of each other lately.

I mean, with the wedding and everything.

Please, Dad.

Arthur, your father just wants...


What if I got away from the store early tomorrow and, uh, you and I got in some fishing?

Maybe a little talk the way we used to?

How would you like that, boy, huh?


What do you mean, okay?

You don't have to, you know.

Nobody's forcing you. Don't do me any favors.

Now, Malcolm. Arthur, your father's making an effort.

He's trying so hard to behave like a decent, civilized human being.

Why, Son?

I can't tell you, Dad.

Ninety-two dollars is a lot of money.

Yes, sir.

Have you spent it?

Yes, sir.

And you don't think we have a right to find out what you did with it?

I'll pay it all back, Dad. I promise. I always intended to.

How, peddling papers?

No, but some way.

What we want to know is why did you steal it in the first place.

Not steal. He took.

Why? Why, Arthur, why?


Now let's cut out this horsing around.

I want answers, understand?

Now sit up straight like a man.

Now look at me.

In the eyes, do you hear?

Now you talk or I'll...

What will you do, kill me? I wish you would!

I wish to God you would.

What is it?

Malcolm, what's happened to him?

Listen, kid. Listen, Son.

Whatever it is, we'll back you up, your mother and me.

We'll do something. If something hurts you, we won't let it.

Just tell us what it is.

Tell us, Son, even if it's the worst thing in the world.

It is the worst thing in the world.

She's going to die.

I've got to stop it.

Help me stop it, Dad!

I'll handle this.

It's out by the lake.

Why don't they...

We're looking for my daughter. Is she here?

Your daughter?

I'm here alone with my grandchildren.

Doesn't a doctor live here?

A doctor? No.

We were told— Does a doctor live anywhere near here?

All right, I'll tell her. Ella, we're ready to get started...

Will you— That's her! That's the lady.

In the preparing room.

Oh, Janet.

Don't touch her.


She's under sedation.

She'll be fine in the morning.

You realize, of course, that any discussion with the law about this will involve the girl too.

Let's go.

All right, Son. This is where you get off.

But Janet...

We'll take care of Janet.

But I have— Get out.

Mr. Willard, I know I...

Get out.

We'll talk about it tomorrow, Son. You need rest now. Go on.

How is she?

We got there in time.

Okay. Well, now what?

I don't know.

They're going to talk.

Well, so long, Art.


About before, I'm sorry.

Ah, forget it. It's no sweat.

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry.



There's coffee.


Thank you.

I'll take that. Pour another one for Mr. Willard.

You sit down, Mr. Willard.

Cream and sugar?

No, thank you.

It's good for energy. No, thank you.

Maybe I could fix you a piece of toast. Will you please stop?

I— I don't want this kind of tiptoeing around me.

I was blind.

I was wrong, and I don't know where.

All right, Jim. Let's see if we can pick up the pieces.

I want you to know that the boy's mother and I, we'd do anything...

I know.

And his mother and I... we know how you feel about the boy.

If Janet were our daughter...

He didn't mean to hurt her, Mr. Willard.

He's a good boy, a decent boy.

If only he'd come to us.


He did. He did come to me, and I gave him a book.

And then he went to you.


He came to us, and I wouldn't listen, Jim.

We're trying to say he'll do anything for Janet, just anything to make up for...

Well, they'll have to get married, of course.

Arthur will quit school and get a job.

Oh, Malcolm, will he have to give up school?

More than just school, Jessie.

A lot more.

He wanted to be an engineer or a lawyer.

He can't now. He won't have time.

These kids, they put themselves in a sort of straitjacket for the rest of their lives.

Just tell us what we should do, Jim.

Tell us what you want.

I don't know.

You don't?

No, I don't.

I've run out of rules for Janet.

I want what is best for her, as I've always wanted.

Only this time, I'm going to find out what she wants.

If it's right, I'll see that she gets it.

If it isn't, we'll work it out together.



I don't want to marry Arthur, Daddy.

No, Mrs. Bartley. It's not his fault.

You see, I was the one.

I liked him better than he liked me.

All along, I liked him better.

But I'll get over it.

Don't you think— No.

No, please don't.

Daddy, I know what I want to do.

Come in.

Oh, Ernie.

Good morning. Good morning.

What's this?

That's your 92 bucks.

I just came from the drugstore.

That jerk still had the money on him.

Well, thanks, Ernie.

Did you have a little trouble?

No, it was a pleasure.

Where's Art? Upstairs dressing.

Would you tell him his breakfast is ready?

Tell him his mother and I want a few words with him.

You'll have to wait in line, Major.

I've got a few words for him myself.

Malcolm, was that boy being rude?


Yes, Jessie, he was.

You know something?

I'm developing a split personality about you.

First I think you're a crumb.

Then I get the idea maybe you're okay.

Then I find out all over again you're just a crumb.

All right, I'm a crumb.

You know it. I know it.

So why don't you lay off? Why should I?

I beat up one crumb already this morning.

Look, I said I was sorry, for Pete's sake.

You couldn't even go down to the station to see her off.

Sleeping late is more important to you.

Eating a crummy breakfast and combing your crummy hair.

Who? What are you talking about?

Ah, forget it. Your breakfast is ready.

I hope you choke on it.

Wait a minute.

What is this? Who's going off?


Didn't you know?

Arthur, are you coming down?

Tell me!

I came by the station, and she was there with her old man.

They said she was going to some aunt of hers or something.

Well, didn't you know?

What time does her train leave?

About 10:15.

But it's later than that now.

Why'd you let her go, Dad?

She wanted to.

We tried to argue, but then we all agreed...

Who all agreed?

You never asked me.

It was the girl herself, Son. She wanted...

She didn't want you to know till she'd gone.



Well, here's your breakfast.

Thanks, Mom.

Why didn't you tell me last night?

We promised her.

Dad, what am I supposed to do?

Well, for one thing, you're not supposed to be serious on an empty stomach.

You should eat first.

Should I be grateful because I'm off the hook?

Should I just let her take it for both of us and go back to school like nothing's happened?


What are you doing, Dad?

Sparing me again? Now look here.

Like you did with my old dog?

Doing my job, running my life?

Sending my girl away?

Dad, what would you do?

At your age, Son, I don't know.

Well, I do.

Ernie, does that train stop at Croton?

Yeah. I think so.

Hey, we could maybe beat it there if...

Can either of you boys drive?

Are you kidding?

Get the car. I hear you.

Here, you'll need money. No, Dad.

Take it. And you'll need permission to be married.

Oh, Mom.

Don't cry.

How— How will you live?

I don't know. A job at a gas station, something.

We'll get along fine.


Please don't cry about it.

I'm not.

It's just that I...

I want to say something important to you, and all I can think of is...

Arthur, take a piece of toast with you.

I love you, Mom.


Dad— Okay, Son.

There he goes.

There goes Janet.

Their childhood.

Their innocence.

All those straight A's gone right up the flue.


Why did it happen, Malcolm?

I don't know, Jess.

In the army, the first thing we learned was "No excuse, sir."

I don't know why it happened.

Croton Junction. Next stop Wakefield.

Croton Junction. Next stop Wakefield.


I beg your pardon.


Where did you think you were going?