Coming Through the Rye (2015) Script

Nice shot. Go, go.

Right here, right here. Give it to me.

Pass it right here. One more, one more.

Look at that header. Come on, put it up. Put it up.

Right here, here, here.

Nice, nice, nice.

Let's go, go.

Keep it up, keep it up.


Jamie, have a seat.

Thank you, sir.

What can I do for you?

Well, sir, I came to ask you if you could co-sponsor my independent study project, along with Mr. Z.

What do you plan to do in this independent study project?

Write a stage adaptation of The Catcher in theRye, sir.

I've actually already started it.

You wanna adapt Catcher in the Rye?

Yes, sir. Why?

Well, because I think it deserves to be a play, I mean, it's the best book I've ever read.

It made me laugh. It made me cry.

It just... it really spoke to me.

It spoke to you? Yes, sir.

What did it say?

Well, I mean, that's just sort of figure of speech, but... MR. Oh, I get you.

Grabbed you by the collar and shook you to the core.

More figures of speech.

What did it say to you, Jamie?

Sir, for the first time, I felt like I was reading about someone who understands me.

Not Huck Finn, not Tom Sawyer, but Holden Caulfield.

And we'll put it on here in school and I'm gonna play Holden.

You have Salinger's permission?

Well, I've been trying to contact Mr. Salinger, that... that's part of it, I've been writing to anyone who may have met him.

I've read, he's a bit of a recluse, a hermit, nobody knows where he lives.

I've heard that too, sir. But I can get in contact with him, I know I can.

The reason I'm asking you is because you're the one who taught us the book and you're the best teacher at the school, practically.

But if you don't want to, I'd understand.

Like, hell I would.

Sure I'm not one of his hockey players, or football players, or Fin, Feather, and Fur Club members, but it's not as if I'm asking to make a model of The Globe Theater out of Popsicle sticks. Which I happen to know, one of his football players did one year.

Jamie, I think you're biting off more than you can chew, but okay.

♪ If I were free ♪

♪ I would run into battles ♪

♪ With flowers and hugs ♪

♪ And bow at the boots ♪

♪ Of our well-oiled thugs ♪

♪ Yes, if I were free ♪

♪ If it were me ♪

♪ I would yell out ♪

♪ "I love you," to all I passed ♪

♪ I would disrobe, and disco ♪

♪ And rip off my mask ♪

♪ Yes, if I were free ♪

♪ I'd be the 'U' that crossed the 'I' ♪

♪ To simply 'B' ♪

♪ Minding our reflections ♪

♪ At the bottom of the sea ♪

♪ What did you see? ♪

♪ I saw that you and I ♪

♪ Forever have been free ♪

♪ The light became too heavy ♪

♪ And I fell into a dream ♪

♪ What did you dream? ♪

What wouldst thou have with me?

Will you pluck your sword out of his pilcher by the ears? Make haste.

I am for you.

Come, sir, your passado.

Draw, Benvolio, beat down their weapons.

Gentlemen, for shame, forbear this outrage.

Tybalt, Mercutio, the Prince expressly hath forbidden this bandying in Verona streets.

Hold, Tybalt!

Good Mercutio!

What, art thou hurt? Merit 'tis enough.

Ask for me tomorrow and you shall find me a grave man.

Courage, man, the hurt cannot be much.

No, 'tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church-door, but 'twill serve.

Help me into some house, Benvolio, or I shall faint.

They've made worms' meat of me.

A plague on both your houses.

Oh, hey.

Hi. Hi, Lady Capulet.

How are you doing?

That was amazing.

Hey, you were really great.

All you cross-school girls were.

For townies? No, for anybody, really.

Well, I enjoyed working with you, too, Jamie.


Hey, look, so I wrote this play, called The Catcher... actually... I actually adapted it from the book, The Catcher in the Rye.

Anyway, you'd be great as Sally Hayes, Holden Caulfield's girlfriend.

I'm actually playing the role of Holden.

Oh, she doth teach the torches to burn bright.

My ears have not drunk a hundred words of thy tongues uttering.

But I know the sound.

Art thou not Romeo and a Crampton boy?

What's a nice kid like you doing in a place like this anyway?

I don't know.

Like, hell I don't.

But that's not a pretty story either.

♪ The story of love ♪

♪ Is the story of sighs ♪ I'm gonna miss Ed Sullivan on Sunday, I got to get to school by 5:00.

What? But it's the Rolling Stones.

Yeah. Well, my quartermaster is taking a few of us out to eat, so.

A teacher? Yeah, of course.

The foot again?

Another ingrown toenail.

I get them, like, every couple of months now.

It hurts like hell.

Oh, yeah? Yeah.

Well, then why don't you try some of this?

What's that?

What do you think it is, man?

It's grass.

You do marijuana?

I don't do it, I smoke it.

Are you kidding? You're gonna get addicted.

I'm not gonna get addicted. Oh, my God, Gerry.

You're gonna get arrested.

I'm not gonna get arrested. I'm serious.

Listen to me, it's no big deal.

Just don't tell anyone, all right?

Oh, God. Hey, check this out.

Holy crap, what is that?

You are so juvenile. What do you think it is?

It's a bra, but whose? Robin Miko.

We make out in the darkroom.

Kiss me here?

I like to enlarge you.

I wanna go to Newberry.

The Defense Department announced today that there are now more than 300,000 American soldiers serving in Vietnam.

Pentagon officials refuse to confirm...

...500,000 troops may ultimately be required to defeat the...

Yes, is this Mrs. Schwartz?

This is Ed Baker, Dean of Students at Newberry, I'm afraid we've had an incident with Gerry.

What kind of incident?

Well, he's at Houston Valley Hospital right now, Mrs. Schwartz.

Oh, my God. What happened?

It seems he took something, we think it was LSD and jumped through his window. Oh, my God.

Oh, my God. Oh, my God.

His room is on the first floor, Mrs. Schwartz. However, he proceeded to run through the snow shouting that his testicles were on fire.

What? They were on fire?

No, ma'am. Screw Newberry.

I mean, you need to go to some place like Andover, or Hotchkiss, Crampton.

What's so great about those places?

What's so great about them is they're some of the best schools in the world, practically.

I mean, they're all boys schools, but you tell mom that's where you want to go and she'll be thrilled.

All boys schools? How am I supposed to meet girls like Robin at an all boys school?

You got to grow up, man.

That's why I wanna go to Newberry.

Will you shut up about Newberry already?

I mean, I'm talking about going to some of the best schools in the world and you're talking about making out with some girl in a darkroom?


Hey, listen to me.

Graduate from a school like Crampton and you'll meet a zillion girls.

And girls that are worth falling in love with and not just for feeling up.

Okay. Okay. Let's say you're right.

How am I supposed to get into a school like that?

They're made for kids like you.

In Vietnam today, seven marines were killed when their convoy was ambushed by Vietcong regulars near the Song Tra Bong...

I don't really know how to talk to adults, they scare me.

Yeah. Well, another good reason you're going to boarding school, you know, just imagine them naked.

Can I imagine them just in their underwear?


Come on, grow up.

All right. Try this.

Pretend they're someone you love.

I've never been in love.

Jesus Christ, you're killing me.

All right. Well, then why don't you pretend they're someone you trust and love. Moi?

Not you. God, you're crazy, Gerry.

Yeah, get your hands off my wheel.

You're gonna be fine.

What about you?

Me? I don't know, mom's talking about some school up in Maine.

Maine? Called Tate you know, for kids who mess up like with drugs and stuff.

Tough love and all that.

Well, so you're gonna go?

I don't know.

I mean, I've... I kind of had it with school and everything.

School blows.

You got to go to school, Gerry.

You'll get drafted.

Well, I hear they got some great marijuana over there.

♪ I will see ♪

♪ This through ♪

♪ And I will be there ♪

♪ For you ♪

Hello, hi, where can I find someone to help show me around?

We're your guys. Hank Marcus, sophomore.

Hi, I'm Jamie Schwartz. I'm a sophomore, too.

What kind of name is that?


Obviously, Jewish, I mean, Jamie, I know a girl named Jamie.

Hey, Campbell, give the guy a break.

Jamie, how did you hurt yourself?


I'm guessing not football. Soccer?

Actually, it's an ingrown toenail.

It's really infected.

Okay, then.

All yours, Hank.

Welcome to Crampton, Jamie.

And that's how I got here.

The worst thing is, they applauded when I got killed.

It's Mercutio for Christ's sake, everyone loves Mercutio.

But when she's Sally Hayes, that's gonna be me.

Come on.

This is from Mr. Van Orford, a legendary headmaster here from a million years ago.

I thought maybe he could help me find ♪.ID. Salinger.

He wrote back and suggested Bennett Cerf, this old guy from this old people's game show called "What's My Line."

Apparently before Mr. Cerf was ever famous, he started Random House books which happens to be the company that put The Catcher in the Rye in print.

He wrote back and suggested Salinger's agent, the Harold Ober Agency.

Here's my letter to them.

No reply.

So, I wrote Peter Fonda, you know, the boring one from Easy Rider?

Life Magazine said that he ran away from his boarding school because he identified so much with Holden Caulfield.

Here's my letter to him.

No reply.

And here it is.

The heavenly host appear, and camp about, and guard me here.

Mr. Marcus?

She is condemned.

Mr. Schwartz, are you with us?

Yes, sir.

She is saved.

God has saved her soul.

The first six pages of part two for next class.

Mr. Platt? Yes, sir.

Will you inform the members of the football team who left early?

Yes, sir.


Hey, Freddy. Yeah?

So we're in this big drama competition next Wednesday in New York, so can I have your notes?

Yeah, sure.

You have to miss class for that?

Football players miss class all the time.

That, boy, is football.

So it's... Yeah, yeah.

She said that to you.


What you working on?

Oh, just this play I wrote.

You wrote a play? Yeah, I did.

Well, I adapted it from the book The Catcher in the Rye.

Really? I love that book.

So do I, I mean, obviously.

I can't believe you wrote it into a play.

Yeah. We're gonna do it here at school and if it's any good, who knows, off Broadway maybe?

That is so cool. Yeah.

Can I read it?

Sure, if you want, I mean, I'm still rewriting it, but...

Is there a part for me?

Yeah, yeah, you could play, Phoebe.

Oh, that would be amazing.

Isn't she actually about 10 years old?

Yeah, I mean, I didn't mean that you could pass for 10 years old. I just... I know, I'm kidding.

I get that all the time. I meant that you could pass for someone playing 10 years... I know what you mean, Jamie.

Don't worry about it.

So, who's gonna play Holden, Ted?

Got you.

You'd be perfect as Holden.

When it's gonna be put on? This winter.

I'm trying to get Salinger's permission.

Well, our play is the last, so when we get to New York, I'm gonna try and sneak off to find his agent.

That is so cool. Yeah.

They have to say yes. They have to.

He's not interested, kid.

Oh, call Judy Abbot, tell her I'm on my way.

But he hasn't read it.

He'll never read it.

But if he'd read it, I know he'd like it.

It's 99% his dialogue. It doesn't matter if it's a hundred and ninety-nine percent, he won't read it. What if this is the key that unlocks the whole book to a great play, a great movie even?

Think of all the people it would reach, who would never read it.

I admire your passion, kid.

What if you just read it? Maybe you'll think it's amazing, you could talk him to reading it.

Talk him about reading it?

I've never talked to him in my life.

He doesn't like talking to people.

Well, then how do you communicate with him?

He likes people to write.

Okay, well, then after you read it, you could write him, or I could write him?

Just can I please have his address?

I won't give it to anyone, I promise.

Sorry, kid.

Let me see, let me see. Right here.

There he is.

This is 1963, this is like a collector's edition.

Yeah, I know, I will return it, I swear.

But look.

Cornish Flat, New Hampshire.

I found him.

That's fantastic.


He's gone total Holden.

I found him. You found who?

♪ .ID. Salinger.

Really? What's he like?

No, no, I didn't find him personally.

But I found out where he lives.


Hey, Freddy, look at this.

Jamie Schwartz, best supporting actor, third prize.

Yeah, it's the only prize we got.

You stud.

Goebbers gave you a prize, too.

He, sprang a pop quiz while you were gone.

A zero?



Dear Mr. Salinger, if you read this letter and think I'm a pain in the ass, I'm sorry.

I'm one of 575 inmates here at Crampton Prep.

I say inmates, because here at Crampton, it's seems like you always have to watch your back.

I do believe... I do believe the other kids were good people once, but then they come here, and get fed into the machine, and come out phony and cynical, and just plain mean.

Even this guy Freddy Goreshi who was the closest thing to a friend I had fell into the machine.

Where the hell did you get this?

I found it in his drawer.


I fight every day from letting the machine get to me.

In fact, the only thing that keeps me sane is The Catcher in the Rye.

Actually, it's a play of The Catcher in the Rye that I adapted from your book, and the script is a life formula for Holden, Phoebe, and everyone else.

Mr. Salinger... ...I know Holden as well as anyone except for maybe you.

Part of me is Holden and I'm the guy who can bring him to life.

I know this is a lot to ask from someone you or Hollywood has never heard of, but if I could come and see you and talk to you about this, maybe I could convince you of what I'm saying is true.

You could say something like...

You may say something like, "Come on up," or, "Send me the play," or anything, I'd be grateful and indebted to you.

Very sincerely yours, Jamie Schwartz.

We had enough of this asshole?

What the hell? It's the machine, you faggot. The machine.

What? It's the machine, it's gonna take you.

Salinger can't help you now.

You read my letter?

You stole my goddamn letter!

I'm gonna kill you, you bastard.

Are you gonna rat on us, too?

You're a dead man, Schwartz!

That freak, did you see him jump?

♪ I wonder if you hear ♪

♪ The voice inside ♪

♪ Who'll never steal ♪

♪ I wonder if you hear ♪

♪ In the dark ♪

♪ The cold ♪

♪ White ♪

♪ Snow ♪

♪ Do you hear me now? ♪

♪ I'm calling ♪

What are you doing here?


We had a holiday today.

Yeah, old Mr. Dewitt surprises us with one once in a while.

He's our headmaster.

Lucky. Yeah.

So, how'd you end up here?

I don't know.

What are you doing with a suitcase?

Are you running away?

Jamie, why?

Because I hate it there.

It's full of mean guys and phonies, I mean, really, really mean guys.

You sound like Holden. Well, it's me and it's true.

A bunch of guys from the football team bombed my room last night and tried to beat the crap out of me, so I just got the hell out of there.

God, why would they do that?

Because they were snooping in my room and I guess at some point, found the stupid letter that I wrote to Salinger about how they'd all been fed into the machine and they'd become cynical automatons.

Oh, Jamie, but you can't just run away.

I can't go back there, Deedee.

But where are you gonna go?

I'm gonna go find ♪.ID. Salinger.


Yeah, I'm gonna give him my script and maybe he'll... maybe he'll love it and he'll just wanna make a movie of it, or he'll just wanna go straight to Broadway with it. I don't know.

Well, what if you can't find him?

I will. Okay.

How are you gonna get there?

I'll hitchhike.

You're not gonna hitchhike, Jamie.

Yes, I can. I've done it plenty of times.

You have? Yeah.


Gee, okay, then.

I guess, it's goodbye.


♪ One thing ♪

♪ I know ♪

♪ It's not ♪

♪ Where we'll be ♪

♪ That's all ♪ Where you headed, mister?

You know where I'm headed, Deedee.

I'll tell you what, I'll drive you up to see Salinger, but then you got to come back.

To school?

Deedee, I'm not going back.

Okay. You're not coming back.

♪ Your song ♪

♪ While I'm low ♪

♪ But I don't know ♪

♪ Ooh ♪

♪ They talk in codes ♪

♪ Ooh ♪

♪ They talk in codes ♪

♪ Don't hold ♪

♪ Your breath ♪ Why are you doing this?

I like an adventure.

♪ Don't hold your breath ♪ Hey, guys.

Dee. Sit down.

What are you doing here? Field trip.

Just gonna talk to these guys a minute.

Field trip?

Be right back. Yup.

♪ Really brings me down ♪

♪ Oh, yeah ♪ What kind of trouble?

Some guys in the football team bombed his room with firecrackers and tried to beat him up.

So, he's running away?

I mean, that's not how you handle these things.

It was the whole team, Dad.

Really? The whole team?

Is he homosexual?

No, he isn't homosexual.

And even if he is, why should they beat him up?

That's just what they do, baby.

I'm not saying they should.

So, what does this have to do with ♪.ID. Salinger?

Well, if we find him, maybe Salinger will like his script or, at least, like him, then maybe he'll go back to school and put on the play and he'd be cool too and they'll leave him alone.

Honey, this sounds crazy.

Oh, it's not crazy.

You're always trying to help some lost cause.

You're not gonna skip school and you're not gonna run away with some boy.

Look, I'm not running away with him.

It's Friday.

I have two classes.

I'll be back tomorrow.

I promise. Tonight maybe.

Besides, what could be more educational than finding ♪.ID. Salinger?

I'm sorry, baby.

You're gonna have to take him back to school.

That's what I'm trying to do.

You guys always say you trust me, so trust me.

Hey, I was just thinking Your parents wouldn't, you know, call the school or report me, would they?

No, they would never do that.

They pretty much believe in live and let live.

I wish I'd believe that.

What do you mean?

Well, I did something really stupid.

You wrote another letter?

No. I wish.

And this was worse, much, much, much, much worse.

The beginning of junior year, I actually had quite few friends in Crampton.

One of them was this kid, Hank Marcus.

He was my best friend.

He was the first kid that I met there.

He was super funny, really smart, had a smile that just kills.

I know that sounds weird but if you met him, you'd definitely say the same thing.

He was really the best.

He taught me to rock climb and... anyway, I took this walk down to the lake one morning at dawn.

Some mornings I just like getting up and watching the sunrise.

Hank and I had started to drift apart.

He was hanging out with these kids who were taking a lot of risks. Oh, we got to go.

Ted, stash your car. They were drinking, doing drugs, all one-way tickets home.

Hey, come on.

Hey, man, I know you're not asleep.

I just saw you get out of the VW.

What are you doing here?

Me? What are you doing?

You could get kicked out for that.

It was nothing. Just having some fun.

Are you okay? Yeah, I'm fine.

What are you doing here, man?

Were you, like, tripping or something?

It's nothing. Relax.

That's exactly what my brother said.

He went to boarding school, he got messed up with drugs, and then he got kicked out, and he completely screwed up his life. Jesus, okay?

I'm not your brother.

You're my best friend.

And I care about you. I don't wanna lose you, man.

I'm fine. I'm telling you.

Just leave me alone.

Hang on.

Jamie Jamie Morrison Morrison Weatherby George Dupree.

What's up?

Sir, would it be possible for a student to talk to you off the record?

Yes it is.

Okay. And you promise no matter what I tell you no one could get in trouble?


Come in, Jamie.

Hey, get the door, please?

Give me your hand.

Here, here.

You're doing great.

Well done.

It's all about trust, isn't it?

I trusted that what I was doing was the right thing for him.

Well, what happened to him?

Did he get kicked out?


But he never spoke to me again, most people didn't after that.

Maybe you saved his life.

You know, Holden was always trying to protect kids, trying to catch them before they fell off that cliff.


♪ Came to the cold ♪

♪ Just to see you ♪

♪ Standing there in expectation ♪

♪ Woolen coat and blue eyes staring ♪

♪ Oh, this vision does me good ♪

♪ In the city we don't know yet... ♪ It's so beautiful.

You know, when I was little kid...

Look how many you got in your hair.

When I was a kid, sometimes one of these would float down our street, like, something out of Wizard of Oz and I used to believe that if you held it in your hand and then you made a wish and then blew it away, that it would come true.

Well, make a wish.

Oh, no, I already did.

What did you wish for?

That I'd be Holden Caulfield on stage or in the movies.



You shouldn't have told me.

That's funny.

I think that only applies to birthday candles.

Really? Yeah.

Let's test it.

What'd you wish for?

That you'd kiss me.

♪ You are ♪

♪ In my dreams at night ♪

♪ Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh... ♪

I guess you were right.

You're gonna be a movie star.

♪ With the music on their branches ♪

♪ Keep them from the mouths of creatures ♪

♪ Who intend for them no good... ♪ If we don't go, it'll be dark when we get there.


You're right.

♪ Speak the thing you could not utter ♪

♪ Wind will howl and moon will cower ♪

♪ At the magic of the word ♪

♪ Oh, oh ♪

♪ Ohoooh ♪

♪ Oh, ohoh ♪

♪ Ohohoh, ohoh... ♪ I guess we didn't plan this too well.

That's okay.

You wanna stay here?


Wait here.

I'm right here.

Oh, sorry.

I was just wondering if you have any rooms available.

You want a room?

Yes, sir.

How much?

How many?

Two, my wife and I, we're just passing through.

Your wife, you say?

Yes, sir.

Two beds or one?


One. One.

No need to shout. Sorry.

Are you married?

Yes, sir.

Yes, sir.



This isn't so bad.

There's just one bed.

Yeah, I just thought that it would be cheaper.

Sorry, I guess I should've asked you first.

I'll just sleep on the chair.

No, it's okay.


You sleep with your pants on?

Well, no, not usually.

I just thought that... okay.

Never mind.

Listen, I don't have any protection.

I'm on the pill.


Well, I was getting excruciating periods, I even had to go to the hospital once.

So my doctor put me on the pill.


So, have you slept with a lot of guys?

No, I've never slept with anyone.


You're shaking.

Am I?


What are you scared of?

I don't know.

Deedee, stop.

What's wrong?

I just... I wanna go take a walk or something.

Jamie, it's okay.

No, I just have to... I don't...

I don't feel that great right now.

I feel like I should...

I just need to go get some fresh air.

Well, do you want me to come with you?

No, I just...

I need to be alone for a little while.

♪ Moving along ♪

♪ And not to be alone... ♪ So, your name's Robin?

That's right.

What's your name?



That's a girl's name.

Robin, that's a bird's name.

That's true.

I knew a girl named Robin.



She was very...

you could be sisters for Christ's sake.

Honey, I don't think our parents would've named both of us Robin.


Was this Robin a girlfriend of yours?

She changed my life.

That's sweet.

She gave my brother her bra.

Yeah, she wrote dirty things all over it.

That's terrible. Yeah.

They were in the dark room.

He really messed up.

He's in Maine now.

Were you in love with Robin?


I've never been in love.



I was worried about you.

Will you come back up?

Who's your friend?

Oh, Deedee?

She's not my friend, she's my wife.

I'm sorry.



Do you think maybe you went to that teacher about Hank because you were jealous?

What do you mean?

You were jealous of the other boys he was spending time with.

You think I'm queer because I didn't sleep with you?

No, I... Why does it always have to be that the guy wants to do it?

Why can't a guy just not feel it's right or feel it's gonna ruin something without him being queer?

I'm sorry, Jamie.

I told you I went to Leverett, it was because of my brother, but now I'm sorry I told you any of it.

I just wanna go find Salinger.

Can we just do that, please?


Jamie, I'm sorry about last night.

Me too.

Okay, so listen, Deedee.

He could be anywhere in there, he could be in the next aisle or he could be behind the counter, he could even be the postman incognito.

Holden's always talking about this and that guy being incognito.

So, we should be respectful at all times.

And call him Jerome David Salinger, that's his name.

For all we know, he hates ♪.ID.

Well, more likely, he hates Jerome.



Hi, I was wondering if you could tell us where Jerome David Salinger lives.


Mr. Jerome David Salinger.

Nope, never heard of him, sorry.


Is your postmaster around?

I am the postmaster.

Thank you, sir.

I didn't know they were gonna hide him.

I thought they just wouldn't know.

Well, maybe the article was wrong.

I hope not.

Do you feel guilty?

About what?

Well, if he does live here and wants so badly not to be bothered and we're trying so hard to do just that.

Kind of.


But we have the play, I mean, we're not just curiosity seekers.

Right. And I just feel like when I meet him, he'll know me and he'll know that I'm the kid he can trust with Holden.

Let's check this house.

Hello, sir. Hey, how you doing?

Sorry to bother you.

I was wondering if you could tell me if you knew where Jerome David Salinger lives?

Never heard of him.

Who did you say?

Mr. Jerome David Salinger.


Maybe he lives over toward Plainfield.

Yeah, that's where he lives, I think.


Where's Plainfield?

Oh, behind you.

You got to turn around.

All right. Thank you.

You aren't the first ones, you know.

They come and they go.

You won't find him.

Nobody does.

Nobody finds him.

Nobody talks to him.

Nobody gets near him.

Well, we're different.

He was so obviously lying, I mean, he's the first house on the road, he could be a goddamn sentry paid by Salinger to misdirect people.

We're definitely on the right path.

Okay, then.

So much for feeling guilty.

Hello, sir.


We're looking for Jerome David Salinger.

Salinger? Yes, sir.

No, that's a... that's a new one on me.

Who was it, you said?

Mr. Jerome David Salinger.

Live around here, you said?

Yes, sir, I believe so.

I got... I wouldn't know.

I'm a new one around here, only been here three years now.

Mr. Jerome David Salinger.

♪ Heaven with a hell ♪

♪ Heaven with a hell ♪

♪ Heaven with a hell ♪


♪ And the bull has long gone ♪

♪ Hey, hey ♪

I have a question.

When you came to the high school yesterday, did you come to see me or did you come to see Maureen?

Come on, you can tell me.

It's important for people to be honest with each other.

I did... It was Maureen, wasn't it?

Well, I'm really happy the way it turned out.

You're upset. I'm not upset.

Well, do you like her?

I don't even know her.

Well, she's an idiot.

How can you not see that?

Well, it doesn't matter, does it?

'Cause she has a couple of things I don't.

Like a chest and bleached blonde hair.


You must have taken a wrong turn.

I didn't take any turns. Well, that guy couldn't have been lying, not him.

Everybody's been lying.

Come on, let's just... let's go back to where it looked, you know, more Salinger-ish.

What does that even mean, Salinger-ish?

It's beginning to feel aimless, Jamie.

Maybe they're right, no one finds him.

If we don't give up, we'll find him.

I wanna go home.

What? No, no.

I told my parents I will be home today.

Deedee, we're gonna find him.

I don't care about finding him anymore.


Deedee, come on.


Deedee, this is stupid.

It's your car.

I'm sorry, I'm an asshole.

Don't call yourself that.

Never call yourself that.

Boys are so juvenile.

You asked me to be honest.

Should I have lied to you?

I knew it was her before you opened your mouth.

You couldn't lie if your life depended on it.

And, you know, I was telling the truth when I said that I'm really happy the way it turned out.


This looks Salinger-ish to me.


What I mean by Salinger-ish, is that something about the area makes me think that one of the most famous writers in the world would live here if he... if he wanted to hide from everyone.

It's got to be something that's remote but not bleak.

Something that's beautiful but untouched.

It's sort of like the thing that Holden likes about people, or kids anyway.

Oh, look.

Oh, God, not again.

What do we do now, Sherlock?

Hey, what's that sound?



Could you please tell us where Jerome David Salinger lives?

No, sorry.

No, you don't know where he lives, or you won't tell me, or can't tell me?

♪ Salinger lives on Beacon Hill ♪

♪ Salinger lives on Beacon Hill ♪

♪ Up behind the mountain ♪ Where is Beacon Hill?

Back on Central behind Othello.

Is not.

Is too!

Hush up now.

Could you please tell us where Beacon Hill is?

We've just come so far.

I'm sorry.

I'm not ordinarily one to lie, it's just that so many people come up here looking for him, just like yourselves.

Go back up this road about a mile.

You'll come to a fork.

Go right, then keep right all the way around the mountain until you get to the back side.

And when the road turns to tar with pine trees on the right, his driveway will be up on the left.

Oh, God, that is fantastic.

Have you ever seen him?

Well, I have.

I've seen him, all right, but we didn't get too friendly.

Thank you. Thank you so much.

Thank you so much, ma'am.

Thank you, guys. You've been a great help.

You're welcome. Thanks a lot.

Isn't it ironic that Holden is all into protecting kids and it's actually kids who were the only ones willing give up Salinger?

People aren't always what you think they are.

Yeah, well, you're nothing like I thought you were.

What'd you think I was?


I'll let you off that one.

Tell me what I'm really like.

Well, you're spunky.

Spunky? Yeah.

You're refreshing.

Oh, God, I sound like a breakfast drink.

You're bubbly.

So, Fresca?

You're honest and kind.

You're strong.

You're sensitive.

Nice. You're nice.

No, that was nice.

Trustworthy, loyal, helpful.

You're ruining it.

I really do like you, Deedee.

I still like you, too.

Hey, this is looking Salinger-ish, isn't it?


This is exactly what she described.

What do you think?

Should we?


You think?

It could be.

Jesus, my knees are shaking.


Oh, my God, that's him.

All right, let's go.

I don't know what to say.

Make it good.

Yes. What is it?

Sir, could you please tell me where I can find Jerome David Salinger?

I am he. What do you want?

Mr. Salinger, I've been looking for you for over a year.

Why didn't you write?

Harold Ober told me not to.

Harold Ober has been dead for 10 years.

I mean, the Harold Ober Agency, Allen, I think, the guy's name was.

Yes, yes. Okay.

Why didn't you listen to him?

Sir, I can't really hear you from up there.

Do you think he's coming down?

I don't know.

I really hope so.

It's okay, you're doing great.


Here he comes.

Hello, Mr. Salinger.

I'm Jamie Schwartz.

This is Deedee Gorlin.

Well, what do you want? Why have you come?

Well, sir, I've had a pretty rough time in school.

And... when I read your book, The Catcher in the Rye, it just felt like for the first time, somebody understood me.

It's as if someone wrote down the exact thoughts I had in my head.

So, I adapted it into a play.

That's a terrible idea.

The Catcher in the Rye was created for the stage in people's minds.

It mustn't be interpreted.

It cannot be done successfully.

Well, that's just it, sir.

I didn't interpret The Catcher in the Rye.

It's all your words.

I even say on the front page of the script in a note to the director that it must not be an interpretation but a door through which the story flows freely.

No, it's impossible.

Anytime you put a boy on the stage with a trench coat and a red hat and call him Holden Caulfield, that is interpretation.

Anytime you put a little girl on the stage in pajamas and call her Phoebe, that is interpretation.

Acting is interpretation.

Well, if you put on a play and somebody films the play, that film is not an interpretation.

Then what's the point?

Well, the point is to touch people the way I've been touched.

To give people a chance to experience and to know Holden Caulfield, people who wouldn't have known him otherwise.

You know Holden Caulfield?

Yes, sir, I do.

What did you expect me to say?

I have been offered fortunes from people who wanna do this.

Elia Kazan offered me a million dollars.

What could you possibly offer me?

Well, I guess I can't offer you anything except that this was done with a pure heart, not for financial gain.

You know, this pains me.

It just grieves me and it depresses me that someone your age should do this.

Do you realize how often someone like you comes up my driveway?

That wrote plays?

No, they don't write plays.

Where did you come from?

Well, home is New Jersey but we just drove up from Crampton Prep, my boarding school in Pennsylvania.

Didn't you know I would say no to you?

Didn't you realize? No.

No, I thought if you just read the script, I mean, it's your play.

I never wrote a play.

Okay, it's your book.

That's what I meant.

But the play has 99% your dialogue.

Sir, I've had such a rough time in school.

And The Catcher in the Rye just found me at the right time.

I know, you have told me that.

A bunch of kids broke into his room at 3:00 in the morning to beat him up.

Is it possible he deserved it?

Or maybe he took a risk and stood up for someone and tried to...

Deedee, it's okay.

Maybe I did deserve it.

But, Mr. Salinger, that doesn't change anything.

These are my children.

They belong to me.

They're mine.

Now, I have to go.

Mr. Salinger, look, I don't say this to be disrespectful and I say it with all sincerity.

But don't you believe in the Bible where it says it's the role of the parent to raise the child into maturity and then let them go into the world?

I mean, don't you believe The Catcher in the Rye has matured and then it's time to let it go into the world?

No, that is a terrible analogy.

The Catcher in the Rye never grows old.

Phoebe and Holden are eternally the same young age.

You look like a creative young man.

Why don't you write an original play?

Well, absolutely, I will.

But I just...

I feel like I had to do this first.

Son, you can throw away everything I said, but it boils down to this.

If you do that play, you're stealing.

I'm telling you, do not do this play.

Mr. Salinger, this play means everything to me.

He's a perfect Holden, sir.

No, he isn't.

Please, sir.

I'm sorry, I have to go.

Mr. Salinger.


Can we, at least, keep in contact?


There's nothing to keep in contact about.

Well, we met ♪.ID. Salinger.

You shook his hand.

I'm sorry, Jamie.

♪ I thought if I fought you ♪

♪ In the open field ♪

♪ Your bayonet would crack ♪

♪ On my hot iron shield ♪

♪ But you caught me running ♪

♪ Now I'm at your command ♪

♪ A servant to forces ♪

♪ That I don't understand ♪ I wanna go to Maine.

I can't go to Maine, Jamie.

I have to go home. Come on, sure you can.

It's beautiful as hell up there.

We could... we can go hang out until the money runs out and when the money runs out, I could get a job... Jamie, stop.

You're freaking me out.

Look, you're quoting Holden.

I just want us to go back to Pennsylvania.

All right. I'll hitchhike then.

Jamie, please.

It's practically night.

Well, if I go now, I can get a ride.

♪ Who would be following... ♪ I don't know why but I'm scared for you, Jamie.

Well don't be, I'm fine.

♪ Who would believe ♪

♪ That the shepherd was me ♪

How about you go in the morning?

I'll take you to the interstate in the morning, I promise, okay?

♪ ...commits original sin ♪

♪ When that last ray decays ♪

♪ From the boardwalk parades ♪

♪ Yours is the longest ♪

♪ Shadow to fade ♪

Where are you going?

I'm gonna go downstairs and use the payphone to call my parents, they were expecting me tonight.

♪ I had a feeling ♪

♪ That you wanted to stay ♪

Information. In Hightstown, New Jersey.

Could you please give me the telephone number for Elizabeth Schwartz?

One moment, please.

Hello? Hello, Mrs. Schwartz?


This is Deedee Gorlin.

I'm a friend of Jamie's.

Oh, my God.

Do you know where he is?

Yes, he's with me.

Where are you?

Where's Jamie?

He's upstairs right now, he doesn't know I'm calling.

Where are you?

Somewhere in New England. I can't say but I'm trying to get him to go back to school or home, I really am.

But he wants to go to Maine to see Gerry.


So, did you turn me in?

What's wrong?

Jamie, why didn't you tell me?

Tell you what?

That Gerry's dead?

What do you mean?

Your mom told me that he died in Vietnam.

No, no, he's just missing, he's just missing.

Missing? But... I can't believe that she said that.

Jamie, it's okay.

No, it isn't.

If I just told my mom in the first place, then he'd still be at Newberry or he'd be at the Tate School.

Jamie, no, it's not your fault.

Then whose fault is it, whose?

God damn it, why did she have to tell you...

Why didn't you tell me?

Because if I talk about him, he'll just fade away.

No, Jamie, you have to talk about him.

And talking about him makes him more real.

Look, Holden talked about Allie, he talked about Allie a lot.

Yeah. But not just to anybody.

I mean, he was talking to the reader.

Well, that's because he'd been, you know, talking to a doctor, right?

And he was getting better.

Is that part of why you wanna play him?

Oh, great, first I'm queer, now, I'm crazy.

I'm not saying you're crazy, I was talking about Holden and how he talked about Allie, maybe... because he was getting help.

So I need help?


You just need to start talking to people about Gerry.

To me, at least.

I don't know if I can.

What are you thinking?

That if I go home now, we'll never see each other again.

Jamie, of course, we will.

No, we won't.

I have a car.

Deedee, it's four hours away.

And even if you did come to visit sometimes, it would be different.

You can end up meeting some guy and I might end up meeting some girl.

It's just the way that it works.

What choice do we have?

♪ You caught ♪

♪ Me running ♪

♪ Now I'm at your command ♪

♪ A servant to forces ♪

♪ That I don't understand ♪

♪ You were the shepherd... ♪ You're shaking.

Yeah, I know, look, even my voice is shaking.

Jamie, you're the bravest boy I've ever met.

♪ When that poet decides ♪

♪ How the heroine dies ♪

♪ He commits original sin ♪ Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.

♪ When that last ray ♪

♪ Decays from the boardwalk parades ♪

♪ Yours is the longest ♪

♪ Shadow to fade ♪

The world is a beautiful place to be born into if you don't mind happiness not always being so very much fun.

If you don't mind the touch of hell every now and then just when everything is fine because even in heaven, they don't sing all the time.

Yes, the world is the best place of all for a lot of such things as making the fun scene, making the love scene, making the sad scene, and singing low songs, and having inspirations.

And walking around looking at everything and smelling flowers and goosing statues and even thinking and kissing people, and making babies, and wearing pants, and waving hats, and dancing, and going swimming in rivers on picnics, in the middle of the summer, and just generally, living it up, yes.

But then right in the middle of it comes the smiling mortician.

Sit down, Jamie.

Son, you've given us plenty of grounds to expel you.

Yes, sir. I don't know what to say.

We know that some students have been giving you a hard time and your room was vandalized.

I don't know anything about that, sir.

You don't know you were being harassed?

No, sir.

Well, anyway, your room has been restored and certain students have been dealt with accordingly.

Now, your mother called to tell me you've been hanging out with ♪.ID. Salinger?

How does this come about?

Well, I was trying to contact him with respect to my senior project but I wasn't having any luck.

You just picked up and went to his house?

Yes, sir.

How the hell did you find him?

Do you know what restitution is?

A euphemism for punishment.

Well, not exactly. But in this case, I think you're right.

Jamie, at chapel tomorrow in the appropriate attire.

I want you to tell the school how you came to find ♪.ID. Salinger and what transpired between you.

With all due respect, sir, I think that's a horrible idea.

I... I... I just think it's like going straight from the pot into the frying pan or, you know, however that expression works.

I think people would be very interested to hear what you have to say.

I want you to do this, Jamie.


Mr. Dewitt asked me to tell you how I came to find and talk to ♪.ID. Salinger this weekend.

Well, it started...

It started with...

All right. Try this.

Why don't you pretend that it's someone you love?

It started with my brother, Gerry.

He died in Vietnam.

It's not my place, sir.

It's not. It's Salinger's.

And he asked me not to.

Jamie, it's your senior project.

Nobody's making any money off of it.

Or taking anything away from Salinger for that matter.

The fact is, he won't even know about it.

The project was to write and produce the play.

If you wanna pass and graduate this spring, you have to complete the project.

Think of it as a scholarly investigation into whether Salinger was correct that the play can't be done successfully.

If you miss the mark, your fellow students will let you know.

And if Jamie doesn't wanna play Holden Caulfield, we'll just give that role to Ted Tyler.

So the play went on and it turned out to be pretty damn good.

Maureen made a hell of a Sally Hayes but kissing her holds no attraction to me anymore.

And boobs in general are no big deal either.

And being Holden, Ted Tyler made a damn good Holden.

It actually made me really happy.

Having him play that role was, like, for the first time I really let myself go.





Come in. Hey.

Hey. That play was good, Schwartz.

That play was great.

Did you hear that audience?

Yeah, I think everyone was just being nice.

I think I'm getting, like, the sympathy vote.

No. No way, man.

I'm telling you it was boss.

Everyone's saying it.

It blew everyone away.

Really? Yeah.

And, I owe you an apology.

I was wrong about you.

How so?

You got some pretty big balls.


And, you know, I just wanted you to know that I wasn't a part of that group that came to your room. But, I mean, I should've tried to stop them.

You were a great Holden, Ted.

You think? Yeah, I do.

I really, really, really do.

You know, Salinger, man, he got it all wrong.

That play is the ticket.

You think I should tell him?

No. Well, I'm gonna.

You're what? Yeah, I'm gonna give it to him like this.

I took my name off it.

You're crazy, man.

Why would you take your name off of it?

Because it's not my play.

It's... I just sort of condensed the book and I...

I wanna give it to him as a gift, no strings attached.

And you think if it ever gets produced you'll play Holden?

No. No.

I'll definitely put you up for it.

All right.

All right.

But I'll need your car.

Hey, Deedee.

You know when you asked me if I was jealous of Hank and the other guys, well, I think I was, just like you said.

I mean, I don't think that's why I went to Leverett.

I... I mean, I really was worried about him.

And I was freaking out about my brother, but, I didn't wanna lose Hank, too.

You loved him?


I mean, I couldn't kiss him or anything.

I can't imagine something like that, but maybe I did love him.

Is that weird?

Personally, I think it's beautiful but boys get freaked out about stuff like that, don't they?


And in all boys schools there must be a lot of weird loving and a whole lot of freaking out going on.

I don't know how you did it.

♪ And a light in the window ♪

♪ To pass the night through ♪

♪ Maybe so uncertain but what can I do ♪

♪ Keeping it on ♪

♪ Keeping it on ♪

♪ And I know I like it ♪

♪ But what does that prove? ♪

♪ Sometimes I worry I don't know ♪

♪ How to love you ♪

Are you scared?


Don't be.

But I'll turn the car around in case we have to make a quick getaway.



Your script.

Oh. Thanks.


What is this?

Oh. Sadie. Sorry.

Hey, never mind.

Never mind. Sorry.

I'm trying to get out of here.

Mr. Salinger, sir, please don't be mad at me but we did your play.

You're the kid who was here this fall.

Yes, sir.

Well, come in.

Come in. Come in.

Come on. Okay.


Here, sit.

Look, first of all, it's Jamie, right?

Yes, sir.

Well, first off, I never wrote a play.

I don't write plays.

I write books.

Second of all, how'd it go?

Oh, man, Mr. Salinger, it... it was a huge success.

People stood up and they cheered...

Cheer and cried, yeah.

You were there?

No, I wasn't there.

You're not the first person to have done this.

There's a group in New York that did it.

There's a group, up on the Hudson did it.

The reaction is always the same, they stand up, they clap, they cheer and they cry.

But you said it couldn't be done successfully?

And the truth is, I don't care.

I hate the theater.

I hate film.

I hate the critics.

And it's just my way of thumbing my nose at them.

They'll never get The Catcher in the Rye.

Holden and Phoebe will stay just the way they are.

Mr. Salinger, I took my name off the script and I just wanted to give it to you in case... No, I don't wanna see it.

I don't wanna see it.

Okay, but...

I don't wanna see it.

Okay. Okay.

And don't leave it here.

All right. I won't.


Now, I have to go pick up my son Matthew at the station.

You need a ride?

No, thanks.

I've got a car down at the bottom of your driveway.

Whatever happened to your friend, Deedee?

Yeah, she's in the car.

She wanted me to do this alone.

I see.

She's a nice girl.

Yeah, she is.

She really is.

Thank you, Mr. Salinger.

You're a very creative boy, Jamie.

Go do something of your own.

I will, sir, I promise.


How did it go?

He was incredible.

He asked about the play and everything, yeah.

Really? Yeah.

But he didn't want the script.

He didn't want it anywhere near him.

He says that The Catcher in the Rye will never be anything but a book.

Jamie, I'm so sorry.

No, it's okay, really. It's all right.

Listen, Holden wanted a house near the woods but not in them so it could be sunny as hell all the time.

He wanted to put kids in glass cases so they never change or grow old or anything. And he wanted people to write so he'd be done with stupid conversations with people like us. Remember the first thing Salinger said to us was, "Why didn't you write?"

I can never be Holden.

He lives here on Beacon Hill.

♪ Maybe when ♪

♪ The winter's gone ♪

♪ We'll sleep in the sun ♪

♪ And dance at dawn ♪

♪ So call me once ♪

♪ Or just five times ♪

♪ Because I'm never sick ♪

♪ Of tearing times ♪

♪ Where I'm going ♪

♪ Where I'm going ♪

♪ Well, I don't know yet ♪

♪ I just know ♪

♪ That I'm going home ♪

♪ And all I know ♪

♪ Is I'm going home ♪

♪ I'm going home ♪

♪ I'm going home ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to wish you well ♪

♪ I didn't watch you go ♪

♪ Because I suppose ♪

♪ I don't know how ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I will remember you ♪

♪ Not the way you left ♪

♪ But how you lived ♪

♪ And what you knew ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to feel your hands ♪

♪ I want to feel your fire burning ♪

♪ Right from where I stand ♪

♪ I'll find my way ♪

♪ You showed me ♪

♪ How I'll find my way ♪

♪ Because you showed me how ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to know it's you ♪

♪ When I hear your voice ♪

♪ Inside my head ♪

♪ Inside my room ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to touch the sky ♪

♪ I want to see ♪

♪ The stars twinkle ♪

♪ Like they were your eyes ♪

♪ I'll find my way ♪

♪ You showed me ♪

♪ I'll find my way ♪

♪ Because you showed me how ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to smell your scent ♪

♪ I want to breathe ♪

♪ The air I did before ♪

♪ Before you left ♪

♪ I ♪

♪ I want to wish you well ♪

♪ The only reason ♪

♪ My heart beats ♪

♪ Is because you showed it how ♪

♪ I'll find my way ♪

♪ You showed me how ♪

♪ You showed me how ♪