Kiss of Death (1947) Script

WOMAN: Christmas Eve in New York.

A happy time for some people. The lucky ones.

Last-minute shopping, presents for the kids.

Hurry home to light the tree and fill the stockings.

For the lucky ones.

Others aren't so lucky.

Nick Bianco hadn't worked for a year.

He had a record. A prison record.

They say it shouldn't count against you.

But when Nick tried to get a job the same thing always happened.

"Very sorry."

No prejudice, of course.

But no job either.

So this is how Nick went Christmas shopping for his kids.


Good afternoon.

Don't move. Put your hands behind you.


Come on. Well, what about the safe?

We've got enough. Come on.

Didn't you ring? Take it easy. I rang.


(ALARM SOUNDS)

OPERATOR: Anybody out at four? Yeah.

This isn't the lobby, mister.


OFFICER: All right, now, stand back. Stand back.

OFFICER: Everybody stand back. (CROWD MURMURING)

Everybody stand back.

(POLICE WHISTLE BLOWS) (TYRES SCREECH)

(GUNSHOTS)

(GUNSHOT)

WOMAN: The same thing happened twenty years ago to Nick's father.

He died with the policeman's bullet in him.

Nick saw it.

It was one of his earliest memories.

(INTERCOM BUZZES)

Yeah?

MAN: Shelby's here with Nick Bianco. Okay. Send 'em in. Both of 'em.

Hello, Bianco. How's the leg? All better, huh?

Yeah. Sit here.

You know who I am?

What difference does it make? Never mind getting fresh, Bianco.

-You're the DA.

Assistant. My name is Louis D'Angelo.

Now, let's see what we got here.

"Bianco, Nick. Aged twenty-nine.

"At the age of seventeen, burglary in the first. Plea, guilty.

"Sixty days in the city reformatory.

"Four years later, grand larceny in the first, charged.

"Convicted of grand in the second at the trial.

"Two-and-one-half to five years in Sing Sing.

"Third charge, robbery in the first while armed.

"Witness failed to appear.

"Case dropped."

By the way, how much do witnesses cost on the open market now?

How should I know? Do you know why you're here?

I'm supposed to squeal.

I want the names of those three men that were with you on that job.

You know what you're gonna get on this rap? Fifteen years. Maybe twenty.

Maybe I can help you. Look, you're wasting your time.

Those records you got there ain't complete.

It should say I was offered a deal by another Assistant DA if I squealed.

I took the full four years.

I'm the same guy now I was then.

Nothing has changed. Nothing.

I wouldn't say that, Nick. Something has changed since then.

Seems to me I saw where the parole officer reported here that you have two kids.

Two little girls.

That ought to change things a little.

You know, sometimes I think the doctors are right, and that all crooks are crazy.

Imagine a guy with two little girls... Shut up!

He don't like that.

How old are they?

You know, I'm always interested in kids.

I...

I have four of my own.

Here.

Can I take a look at your pictures? What pictures?

Pictures you got in your inside coat pocket.

(SLAMS PICTURES)

Beautiful kids, Nick. Yeah, they're cute.

You know, a man's lucky to have kids.

But having a father like you I wouldn't say is very lucky for them.

No, Nick, your kids haven't had much luck.

I'll take care of my family.

My way.

You mean by keeping your mouth shut and going to jail?

You know why you're doing it?

Because you've got that good old hoodlum complex.

No squealing.

Desert your kids. Let 'em starve.

Let your home go to pot.

But don't squeal on some no-good hoodlums who wouldn't turn a finger for you.

I hate crooks. Then why are you wasting your time on me?

Because any guy that could have two kids like that isn't a crook.

Crooked, yes. Stupid, yes. On the wrong foot, yes.

But he isn't one of those mugs that don't belong to human society.

Those are two normal, decent little human beings.

Gimme that! And no crook could make 'em that sweet.

No play ball, eh? No!

You're coming up before Judge Halstead. Do you know him?

Yes.

He'll throw the book at you if you don't cooperate.

No deal.

See you in court, Bianco.

Attorney for Nick Bianco? Yep.

This way, please.

How are you, Nick? How do you do, Mr Howser?

I'm fine, son. Sit down, sir, sit down.

Well, we meet again, Nick.

Fortunes of war, eh?

I, er... I hear you had a long talk with Mr D'Angelo.

You don't have to worry. Good. Good. Your word's all I need.

Did the boys pay you? Everything's been taken care of.

Now, er...

I don't want you to expect very much in court.

We've got no defense at all. So what do I do?

Nothing. Trust me.

Even when Halstead hits you with the book, stand pat, rely on me.

I begin to work then.

On the parole? Yes.

It may take a while, but I'll have you out in no time.

Did you see the missus? I talked to her on the phone.

She'll be in court. Thanks.

Are the kids all right, do you happen to know?

They're fine. Good.

You can rely on me, Nick.

Same goes for me, Mr Howser. Thanks for everything.

Goodbye.


Look at that cheap squirt passing up and down.

What for?

Do they have to keep passing up and down here all the time?

(CHUCKLING)

For a nickel, I'd grab him, stick both thumbs right in his eyes, hang on till he drops dead.

(CHUCKLING)

You're Nick Bianco, ain't you? Yeah.

Howser was telling me. You're a big man.

I'm Tommy Udo.

I've heard of you. You did, huh? Huh.

Imagine me in on this cheap rap, big man like me.

Picked up just for shoving a guy's ears off his head.

Traffic ticket stuff. (KEYS CLANKING)

Hello, Bianco. You got a minute?

I wouldn't give you the skin off a grape.

Gonna be a stiff sentence, Nick.

You better be set. I'm set.

You know, I wasn't fooling when I talked with you.

I liked those pictures you showed me. Thanks.

I talked with the judge. He'll play ball.

Well? No deal.

Okay.

If you should change your mind later on though, let me hear.

Remember my name and get in touch with me.

You know, I'm your insurance policy.

You don't give up, do you?

I usually do.

But I tried a little extra hard this time.


What do you know? I just remembered something.

It's my birthday. Yeah, today.

Congratulations. No kidding.

I'll tell you something, big man.

I never spent a birthday with a better guy.

When I heard that you spit in that judge's face I says to myself, "a buddy", "a stand-up guy".

You talk too much. In front of these squirts?

Go on, a couple of dopey cops.

I don't even know they're sitting there.

Come on. Cheer up, big man. It's my birthday party.

We get a free feed tonight.

Ossining. Next stop is Ossining.

WOMAN: Yes. Next stop, Ossining.

Plenty of jobs here.

Even for the unlucky ones.

And no prejudice.

359. 358.

354.

From the old lady, Nick? No. I got my own back again.

That's the second one, ain't it? Yeah.

She hasn't written for three months.

It says, "Party no longer at this address."

It just doesn't make sense.

Now, take it easy, Nick. Quit stewing.

Everything was all right three months ago.

She wrote and said everything was all right.

Then, all of a sudden...

I've got to find out about it.

You can find out. Ask Chips Cooney. You know him, don't you?

Used to, but how am I gonna ask him?

Well, he's coming up here on a new rap.

The kids.

She knows how I worry about 'em.

She oughta write.

Hey, Nick.

Chips Cooney.

Harry. Get to Chips Cooney.

See if he knows what's happened to my missus.


She's dead. Dead? What happened?

I don't know.

(INAUDIBLE DIALOGUE)


WOMAN: There are some things you just don't want to talk about.

I kept away as long as I could.

And then, finally, one Sunday afternoon, I got the courage and went up to see him.

Take a seat, please, miss.

Send in A-106180.

Check.


Hello, Nick.

Well, don't you remember me? Sure.

Nettie.

You used to take care of my kids. Uh-huh.

How are you? I'm all right.

Nick, I, I moved away before it happened.

Yeah.

Maria and I had a fight.

And then, a few weeks later, I moved away.

Then...

Just two weeks ago, I found out about it.

I met a former neighbour.

She told you? Yes.

I felt so bad about the kids.

I enquired at the police, and I found out that...

Well, they sent me to a place, and I found out they're all right.

You saw the kids? Yes.

And they're all right? Oh, yes. They look swell.

Where are they?

In an orphanage outside of New York. A big place.

I was gonna write and tell you about it.

And then I thought maybe I'd better come and see you.

I feel so sorry about everything, Nick.

Tell me about Maria.

She wasn't feeling very well when I saw her the last time.

What did you fight about? Oh, er, I don't remember anymore.

Okay. I don't. Honestly.

Was she unhappy?

Oh, yes.

Drinking? Uh-huh.

Anything else? No. No, no, no.

What happened? You came here to tell me what happened.

Why did you change your mind?

Scared of hurting me?

Look, Nettie...

I'm the kind of guy you can't hurt.

It doesn't matter.

Oh, Nick!

You told me.

Who is the guy?

Rizzo.

Rizzo.

I had to come see you. I don't know why.

I'm sorry. I don't wanna cry.

Nobody's cried over me for a long time.

Rizzo.

When did it start?

Oh. No. Never mind.

Is there...?

Is there anything I can do for you?

Yeah.

Will you see the kids again? Mm-hmm.

Tell 'em you heard from me, and I'm supposed to be working in South America.

Do that, will you? Yes. Yes, that's what I used to tell 'em, before I moved away.

Are you... alone?

Yes.

I got a good job in a music store.

Well, Nettie, thanks for coming to see me.

Goodbye.

I'll write you soon.

Thanks.

"Nick Bianco. Urgent business."

Did he write this himself? Yes, sir.

Good handwriting. He's not a bad guy.

Bring him in. Yes, sir.

All right, Bianco.

Well, Nick, you haven't been in here before, but I've had good reports on you.

Something's gone wrong, I suppose.

All right, Nick. Get it off your chest.

Well, I used up all my letters for this month, but they came back saying the person no longer lived at the address.

I'd like to send another letter off.

And I was told that you had to give permission.

That's right, if it's urgent.

Yes, sir. It's very urgent.

Who is the letter going to? To the assistant DA, Mr D'Angelo.

Hmm. Better let me send it. He'll read it sooner.

Yes, sir. You can send it.

Tell him that Nick Bianco wants to cash in on his insurance policy.

Nothing else? No, sir. He'll understand that.

I'll send it this afternoon. Thanks.

Oh, Nick. You need a little more exercise.

How about putting Bianco on the ball team, Joe?

We can use him. You play ball?

I'm going to.

Thank you, sir.


Hello, Bianco. Have a seat.

How are you? All right.

You have a nice ride, Bianco?

Warden phoned me, said he thought it might be important.

Is it? Yeah. Yes, sir.

"Yeah" will do.

Before we get to talking, Bianco, there are a few things I'd like to explain.

Three years ago, I offered to help you.

I'm in no position to offer the same help now.

I see.

My insurance policy has lapsed, eh?

I would say so.

I see.

Well, that's that, huh?

That's that.

What about my kids? How do you mean?

Could I get to see them? As payment?

I'm not doing this for pay. I'm asking you if I could get to see them as a favour.

I think we can take care of that. Then I can see the kids?

I'm pretty sure.

(EXHALES) Okay.

I want to settle one more thing before you talk, Bianco.

We get a lot of offers from men in prison who feel they'd like to do a little squealing.

Prisoners go a little cracked or like a little ride into town.

You knew what you wanted once.

I'd like to know what changed you.

It will give me a chance to decide on whether your story's reliable enough to go to work on.

Well, when I went up, I told you my family was being taken care of.

I was wrong.

My wife killed herself.

She stuck her head in a gas stove.

You wanna talk about the Peacock jewelry job?

Yeah. Who else was on it?

Eddie Williams. Big Ed?

Yeah. Who else?

Tony Mangone. Know him?

Yeah. Who else?

Pete... Rizzo.

Rizzo, eh?

Who else?

Me. D'ANGELO: Any more?

No. MAN: Who drove the car?

Pete Rizzo.

You, Mangone and Williams went in, is that it?

Yes. Take it easy.

Who slugged old man Peacock? Mangone.

If it's on the level, Peacock's a cinch to identify Mangone and Williams.

Who was the fence you used on this job?

I don't know, I didn't handle it. I was grabbed before.

That's right. Who would've handled it? Rizzo.

Would Rizzo have gone to the fence direct? No.

You called somebody first, and they told you where to go?

Yeah. Who did you phone?

Howser. Earl Howser.

Another eminent shyster with connections that ought to...

I think I'm gonna keep you down here in the city jail for a while.

I want you to go on cooperating with us.

You mean go on being a stoolie?

That's what I mean.

Okay... if... If what?

I could see my kids once in a while.

You can see them.

When your pals get pulled in they're gonna make a pretty good guess you did the singing.

I don't care. I do. No sense in getting you killed.

There are one or two things we can do to throw them off.

What's some job you did that you didn't get caught on?

What? Some... You've got to trust me.

Thompson Fur Company, four years ago last March.

Were any of these three on that job with you?

Rizzo.

We'll book Bianco here on the Thompson Fur job.

That'll cover why we brought him here. And I take another rap?

No, no. We'll drop the case later for insufficient evidence.

I'm just covering you. Why?

I told you. I'm gonna wanna use you again.

You've got to be in the clear with Howser and everybody that knows you.

I'll go pick up Rizzo. No. Leave him alone. Don't touch him.

Rizzo drove the car. There's no-one to identify him except Nick here.

That won't stand up. You pick up the other two.

Then it'll look to the mob as if Rizzo's the stoolie and we've made a deal with him.

You don't like Rizzo particularly, do you?

No.

Let me give you some instructions, Nick.

Get ahold of your lawyer, Mr Earl Howser.

Tell him about the Thompson rap. Tell him you think somebody has squealed.

Yeah.

Your side of the fence is almost as dirty as mine.

With one big difference. We hurt bad people, not good ones.

That's right.

Watch your step with Howser. He's a sharp operator.

And remember, you're no good to me if he tumbles to anything.

He won't tumble.

When do I see my kids?

I'll take care of that tomorrow.

Thanks.

Well, I...

I'm a squealer now.

Feel bad about it, Nick?

No. MAN: Come on.

See you later. So long.

I'm nervous. Don't worry.

They used to jump up on me and grab my ears, and I used to...

Good morning, Sister. Good morning.

We're from the district attorney's office.

I phoned the Mother Superior yesterday about seeing the Bianco children.

Yes, I know.

Will you come with me, please? Thank you.

Will you wait in here, please?

Thank you.

Which one of you gentlemen is Mr Bianco?

That's me.

How do you do? I'll get Sister Veronica.

Not a bad place for kids. Yeah.

Sister Veronica? Yes. This is your father.

I know. I recognised him.

Hello, Father. Hello.

Connie.

Rosie.

Sister Veronica told us you were coming today.

You've been away a very long time. You look different.

I thought you would have white hair.

No, I ain't.

Aren't you going to kiss your father?

Oh, Daddy! (KISSING)

Nobody else here has a daddy, have they, Sister Veronica? Nobody else.

Daddy, Mama got hurt, and we waited for you, and said prayers for you every night, and God sent you back.

They're having their music lesson, Mr Bianco.

Would you care to come in the next room and listen to them play the piano?

Yeah.

Take it easy.

(FÜR ELISE BY BEETHOVEN PLAYING)

Sister Theresa, would you let Concetta have her lesson first, please?

Why, of course, Sister. Will you please wait over there, Eileen?

All right, Sister. Thank you, dear. Come on.

I play The Waterfall. Rosaria is way back yet.

May I play it, Sister Veronica? Of course, dear.


Bianco, somebody to see you.

Who? Your lawyer, Earl Howser.

Oh.

Well, well, we meet again, eh? Glad to see you, Nick.

I received your rather surprising message this morning, and may I tell you I dropped everything and came right over. Thanks.

Sit down, son. Sit down.

How, er... How long have they had you here?

Since yesterday. (CHUCKLES)

Well, we can say this much for it. It's a change at least.

I don't like it. Of course not.

I was just making a bad joke.

Er, you...

You've had quite a lot of trouble, I hear.

Besides this.

I mean about your wife. Yeah.

But maybe it wouldn't have happened if you'd done your job like you said.

Oh, you mean, er, about your parole?

Yeah, that's what I mean. I've been pushing it. I'm gonna get it.

I gave you my word, and I still give it to you.

I'm going to put that parole through. Just so you keep plugging.

Now, er, let's hear about this new trouble.

Have they made any specific charge? Yeah.

The Thompson Fur Company heist, four years ago.

Oh. That's reaching back.

Somebody must have it in for you. That's one way of looking at it.

How do you look at it?

Somebody's doing some squealing.

Oh, I see.

Who's handling this in the DA's office? D'Angelo.

Oh, our old friend.

Do you think he's finally got ahold of a squealer?

That's what I think.

Were you under suspicion for the Thompson job at the time?

No.

I see.

Who were you running around with in those days, Nick?

I used to hang around with Pete Rizzo.

He was your partner? Yeah. Rizzo was my partner.

Pete Rizzo. Hmm.

Did D'Angelo mention his name when he talked to you?

Nobody mentioned his name.

I don't think they've got much of a case, Nick.

When D'Angelo finds out that he's not going to scare you out of anything I'll wager he drops it.

I hope so. That's all I need is another rap hung on me.

Now I'll never get my parole. Oh, everything's going to be all right.

I'll see you in a week, Nick. If they start roughing you up, let me know.

I can take care of myself. Fine.

Goodbye, Nick.

Fred? Are you alone?

Get hold of Tommy Udo on the phone.

No. Tell him I want to see him.

No, not here. He'll know where.

Yes. Right away.


OLD WOMAN: It's open.


You a friend of Peter?

Yeah.

Where's the squirt? Not home.

Come home late tonight maybe.

After dinner sometime, maybe.

Where'd he go to? Peter?

(LAUGHING) How I know where Peter go?

Uptown? Downtown? Baseball game? Anywhere.

(LAUGHING)


(CHUCKLING)

"Back after dinner sometime," huh?

(LAUGHING)

Double-crossing squealers, both of you.

What's the matter? I don't know nothing.

So the yellow squirt beat it, huh? Took a powder, huh?

That rat.

Where is he? Where'd he go?

I'm asking you, where's that squealing son of yours?

(CHUCKLES)

You think a squealer can get away from me, huh?

You know what I do to squealers?

I let 'em have it in the belly, so they can roll around for a long time, thinking it over.

You're worse than him.

Telling me he's coming back.

You lying old hag.

(CHUCKLES)

No! No. I'm sick!

Let me go. No.

On a train, huh? Hey. Where you going?

No! No! This is for knowing a squealer.

Not outside! I can't move! I'm sick!

You ain't sick. No! No!

No! (SCREAMS)


(RINGING)

Hello? Yes?

You ain't gonna be bothered with that squealer for a long time.

Yeah. He skipped town before I got there.

'Cause he's gonna read something in the papers, and it's gonna make him take off for South America, the squirt.

(CHUCKLES) Never mind, Early.

You'll read it too.

All right, Tom. Just so you're sure there isn't going to be any more talking.

Fine. Good work.


(DOORBELL BUZZES)

Is Miss Nettie Cavallo home? I'll see.

Is that for me, Mrs. Keller?

Yes. There's a gentleman to see you.

Nick. Oh, for goodness' sakes. Hello.

If there's a phone call for Nick Bianco, that's me.

Will you call me, please? Sure.

Come on in, please.

Oh, Nick, I can hardly believe it. You're out.

When? You didn't tell me last week.

I didn't know last week. They just told me this morning.

Oh, Nick, it's wonderful to see you like this.

Like you used to be.

I mean, not inside a jail or anything. I know.

I came right here. I was hoping you'd be home.

Oh, I almost went to the movies.

I was just thinking... Oh, Nick, what happened?

I got a parole. No! Oh, that's wonderful.

Have you had dinner? Uh-uh.

Well, you must be hungry. I'll get you something to eat.

(PHONE RINGING)

Wait. Oh, I've waited.

Mr Bianco! Your call!

Thanks! I'll be right down! Oh, wait.

Mr Bianco? Your call.

Hello?

Yeah.

Nick, I thought you might be interested to know that I just had a call from Mr Howser.

(CHUCKLES) Yeah.

Yeah. He wanted to do a little crowing about your parole.

Thinks he got it over my dead body.

I let him go right on thinking so.

Mm-hmm.

Nick, about tonight.

Your man'll be at St. Nicholas Arena. At ringside. Got it?

I got it.

Okay. I will.

Yes, sir.

Goodbye.

I've gotta go.

Oh, Nick, where? Couldn't we go for dinner?

Not tonight. Oh, Nick, don't go away like this.

I've got to.

Nick, I don't want anything to happen.

Look, you've got to trust me.

Well, then tell me where you're going. Please.

I can't. I don't want you to know.

I thought you wanted me...

I thought when you kissed me... You thought right.

I want you, and I want my kids, too.

But you've gotta trust me.

I'm on a job and I might not see you for a while.

Hey, stop looking at me like that.

Look at me the way you did upstairs.

I'll need that look. Come on.

Oh, Nick. Attagirl.

I'll see you as soon as I can.

(CROWD SHOUTING)

Come on, squirt. (INDISTINCT)

Rip his eye out. Rip it out of his head!

Rip it out of his head. Tear it out.

Come on. Rip the other eye. Come on. (CHUCKLING)

Come on. Rip the other eye. Come on. Come on. Tear it out of his head. Come on.

(CROWD ROARS)

One, two, three...

Cut the shoving. Hey, Nick, it's me.

Hiya, Tommy. What do you know? The big man.

C'mon, let's get out of here so we can talk, huh? Come on, baby.

(JAZZ MUSIC PLAYS)

Hello, Tommy. How are you? Come on. Right inside.

Your table, Tommy. Okay. Okay.

Champagne, lots of bottles. We're celebrating.

All right, Tommy.

You'll be jumpin' in a couple hours. Always hard when you first get out.

Takes you a while to get started. This place will do it.

Always come here when I'm sprung.

What a big man, that Early Howser, huh?

Remember what I told ya? "Take your rap, leave it to Early. Always gets you out."

Here you are, Mr Udo. "Mr Udo."

Yes, sir. How do you like that, huh?

(CHUCKLES) That's class, huh?

Ain't been to bed for a week. Can't stand sleeping. That's for squirts.

Haven't I met you somewheres before, Mr Bianco?

I don't think so. Don't stick your nose in, Buster.

We're talkin'. We're pals.

Hey, waiter, bring another bottle. Keep 'em coming.

(MIMICKING THE BAND)

(CHUCKING) How do you like that music, man?

Right upstairs, huh? Come on, send it, Jack.

(CLEARS THROAT) Er, what do you got to do, Nick?

What's on the line? I ain't figured it out yet.

Gotta have some fun first. I'm behind three years.

That's talkin'. That's talkin'.

Heard about me, didn't you? No.

In all the papers.

Picked me up for a murder rap.

Was in all the papers. Yeah?

Yeah, sure. Ask her. Hey, Buster?

Sure. The papers wrote all about Tommy, with his picture.

The one I don't like.

Whaddya mean "you don't like"? What's the matter with it?

I don't like it when they show you with the number on.

Go on. Who notices that? A lot of squirts.

I like the one we took together. Nobody asked you.

Listen, I'm gonna be busy. You go home.

Wait a minute. Who you talking to?

Get out. I'm with a pal, see? Got things to do.

Don't want no old ladies around.

You ain't calling me an old lady? Get out.

You want something?

No. No.

Wait in your joint for me.

Don't go out. You understand?

Yeah.

A lot of good this mug's gonna do you. Beat it.

(CHUCKLES)

Dames are no good if you wanna have some fun.

Come on, pal. Drink up, drink up, drink up.

They let you go, huh? Who?

Oh, the bulls. Yeah, sure. Sure.

There was this squirt says he seen me bending over Larry Young right after he was plugged.

Then he says he ain't sure it was me he seen.

Larry Young. He used to own a big café joint, didn't he?

A squirt. Pushing the wrong guys around.

He got it good.

Him and his college rings.

Yeah. He was with a college gang? I didn't know that.

Nah, not a gang. Not a gang. A ring, a ring on his finger.

Worth a couple of bucks.

This joint's dead. It's sour.

You want to have fun, don't you?

So we get out of here, go some place where they got some interest.

Whaddya say, pal? I'm three years behind.

That's it.

Stick to me, big man. You'll catch up.

(CHUCKLING) Come on. We'll shake this dumb joint.

Okay, Mac. Come on.

(DOORBELL RINGS)

Hello, Mr Sulla. Hello, Tommy.

He's a pal. It's okay.

Thanks. Come on, Nick.

What's that funny smell? (SNIFFS) That's perfume.

After we left the first joint, he began to talk.

He said he'd done the Larry Young job.

Alone? Yeah.

He didn't know the guy's name that hired him.

He never even saw him before.

Did he describe him? No. I couldn't push that.

So you got nothing? Go on, Nick.

Well, there's two things.

He copped a ring off Larry Young.

A gold ring from some college.

His girl, Buster's, got it, but she never wears it.

It's no good except as a souvenir.

Then there's the guy that saw the shooting. A fella that Udo knows, called Sammy.

Sort of a panhandler.

He was coming up to get a buck off of Larry Young when Udo came along.

Udo said Sammy saw the shooting and beat it.

Sammy who? I don't know his last name.

Well, that does it.

All we've got to do is find Sammy, produce the ring, and we've got a case.

Congratulations, Nick. Thanks.

You had quite a time, didn't you? Yeah.

I wouldn't wanna go through that again.

I don't think you'll have to.

That's all? That's all.

You might find out about Sammy by asking some of Larry Young's friends.

We may do that.

So long.

Nick.

Everything all right? Yeah. I'm gonna be all right.

(HE WHISTLES)

(WHISTLING) Daddy, stay there!

NICK: Hurry!

Hurry up.

Don't fall. Come on.

(GIRLS SQUEALING) Hurry!

Whoo!

Hey, watch it! (LAUGHS)

Agh! Oops! (WHISTLES)

Whoa! Whoa! GIRL: Hey! Whoa!

Don't come in the house until you get those skates off, or I'll bop ya one.

(GIRLS GIGGLING)

Nettie?

(HE WHISTLES)

Hi!

Hey, hey. I ain't cleaned up yet. Oh, who cares?

Look, old married ladies don't jump on their husbands in public.

Aw, I'm not old, and I'm not a lady.

I'll get the girls. They're takin' off their skates.

How've they been? Wonderful.

Nick, you're not going to wash in the sink. We have a bathroom.

Yeah, but the kids are usin' it. This'll be okay.

(GIGGLES)

(SNIFFS)

Hey, get those suds off more.

What do you want me to do? Drown? That's right. More yet.

Look, I ain't five-and-a-half years old. That's what you think.

Here, let me dry you.

Mm, it feels good.

But it ain't very practical. Give me that towel.

(LAUGHING)

You know, there may be worse jobs than in a brickyard.

But there ain't many dirtier.

It must be awful. Nah, it ain't awful.

(SLAPS KNEE) Come here.

In the kitchen? Oh, Nick!

You know, I ain't the kind of guy that's used to sittin' around home.

I know. It worries me sometimes. It does, huh?

Mm-hmm. Of course. Your coming home every night to just nothing.

That's right. No excitement or anything.

That's right. Every day the same as every other day.

Nick, please don't make me worry too much.

That's what I need.

Someone to worry about me all the time.

Don't you let me get away for one minute.

Or maybe I'll start bustin' into jewelry stores with a rod in my hand.

That's what you think, huh? Oh, no, Nick. You wouldn't.

Maybe I wouldn't. But you hang on. Oh, I will.

I'm mad about you. It's all I think of. You.

I've wanted you ever since I was a girl long ago.

When I used to look at you, I'd feel just like now.

Every time you kiss me, I almost pass out.

Honestly.

Oh, isn't that silly for an old married woman to talk like that?

No, it ain't.

I gotta make dinner.

Who's stoppin' ya? I'm dizzy.

Here. You open this.

Oh, I forgot, there was a phone call for ya.

Yeah? Who? Mr D'Angelo.

What'd he want? He wants to see you Saturday afternoon.

Did he say what for? No.

Couldn't have been anything wrong. He was very nice.

Oh, for goodness' sakes, I don't know what I'm looking for.

You get me so upset.

You shouldn't come in the kitchen and kiss me when I've got dinner to cook.

Oh, yes, the spaghetti! Now, leave me alone. Don't bother me.

We go to trial on Monday. I've arranged for you to get Wednesday off from work.

You say you got a sure case?

I wouldn't go to trial otherwise.

Then what do you need me for?

I need your evidence first, Nick I've built the whole case that way.

Evidence from a stoolie and a squealer? That's not gonna help.

We've got the ring. We've got Sammy.

And they'll verify everything you say when we introduce them.

I see.

I go on the stand, huh?

Yeah.

What if I don't?

You've got no choice.

You mean the DA'll kill my parole?

What would you expect, Nick?

I've got kids. I got a home. People know me like that.

Look, I don't care about me.

Why...?

Why take it out on 'em just because I was a mug once?

Will you listen to me. Well, I...

Go ahead. I...

Makes no difference. I've got no other way out.

You're talkin' like a fool, Nick.

You're known as Nick Cavallo in your town.

Your kids are going to school under that name.

Who's gonna connect you with Nick Bianco? And how?

My pictures in the newspapers.

There won't be any pictures. How do you know?

We won't let them take any. We won't give any out.

Satisfied?

Well, that'll help.

What's the matter now?

I...

Nothing. I was just thinking of Udo. When he finds out...

Look, Nick, I know it isn't gonna be fun, but remember this:

When it's over, you'll be through.

Yeah, that's something.

I'll try and remember that, when I'm on the witness stand singing.

BOY: Hello, Rosie. ROSIE: Hi, Johnny!

Come on, Daddy. Play train with us.

Come on, Daddy. Please.

Aw, Daddy, come on. Please.

Not now.

Daddy, please. Come on, play train with us.

(TELEPHONE RINGING) (FOOTSTEPS ON STAIRS)

Hello.

Yeah, this is Nick.

Well, Nick, I... I got some bad news for ya.

The jury came in a half hour ago with a verdict in the Udo case.

Not guilty.

Hello. Nick? Yeah.

Even the fact that Udo had Larry Young's ring didn't help.

Howser got over the point that there were four hundred rings just like it made for Young's graduating class.

The jury went for it.

Udo went free as soon as the verdict was read.

We got a tail on him, but he's pretty fast.

He might shake him, so keep your eyes open.

You'd better come in and see me tomorrow.

We're ready to do everything we can to help you, Nick.

Goodbye.

(SIGHS)


(DOOR SQUEAKING)


That was the back screen door. The wind blew it shut.

Nick, what is it?

That's the third time you've jumped up.

I can't fall asleep. That's all. Forget it.

Ever since Mr D'Angelo called, you've...

Nick, if something's happened, I'll read about it in the papers.

Maybe I can help you.

Stop talking about it and forget it, will ya, honey?

You've been listening for something.

All night you've been lying there, listening for something.

Yeah, you're right.

You'll read about it in the papers.

Maybe you can help.

They let Tommy Udo off.

Oh, Nick. He's loose.

After what you did?

Yeah. (DOOR BANGING)

That was the wind again.

I can't help it. I'm just jumpy.

The police. We'll call them.

The police can't help me.

Look, honey, I've gotta go downstairs.


He won't come tonight, Nick. Maybe he won't.

Look, I gotta talk to you.

No use hiding it. He's gonna come sometime.

You can go away. Rizzo went away.

Remember what happened to Rizzo's Ma?

Was that Tommy Udo that did that?

Yeah.

We can all go away together, Nick. No.

Some other town. No.

Too many mugs know me.

They're all over.

All the guys I met in jail.

All the heisters I've known ever since I was a kid.

They don't stay in one place.

They're in every town that you can figure, coming and going.

I'm the guy they don't like anymore.

The minute they saw me, they'd go straight to Udo.

Wherever we went we'd be just sitting like this waiting waiting for him.

That's no fun.

We've got to get the police to help us, Nick. They'd be glad to.

Sure. They'd be glad to.

Where am I...

What about you and the kids while I'm at work?

Do you think I could work while I remember how Udo would plan to take care of you and the kids?

You got a tough break marrying a guy like me.

No!

Shh. Shh.

You'll waken the kids.

It won't happen. We won't let it happen.

Take it easy.

It won't happen if you'll help me.

Anything. Anything.

Start packing. Now?

(VEHICLE APPROACHING)

It's all right. It's Bill Johnson coming home.

Start packing. Now?

Now.


Will you write to me? Yeah.

Wait a minute.

Say, buddy, do you happen to know when the number twelve gets in?

No. I'm sorry, I don't know.

Thanks. (TRAIN WHISTLE BLOWS)

Daddy! Daddy! NICK: Hey, be careful. Be careful.

Remember, no letters until I call you. You'll call?

By Friday. Take care of the kids. Yes.

And yourself. Oh, Nick, nothing's going to happen.

Now, don't start worrying. Look, you're going on a vacation.

I want 'em to have a good time. I know I... I know you'll always give 'em a good time, Nettie. I will.

(TRAIN BRAKES SCREECHING) Daddy, do we go on now?

Can we go right on? Yeah. But first you gotta say goodbye.

Goodbye, Daddy. Goodbye, Daddy.

I want you to be good, do you hear? Yes.

And have fun? Yes.

And always remember to mind Nettie. She's your Ma, and do what she says.

We'll miss the train!

Up you go!

Goodbye. Bye.

Up!

Goodbye.

(TRAIN WHISTLE BLOWS) CONDUCTOR: All aboard!


(FOOTSTEPS)


(DOORBELL BUZZES)

(DOORBELL BUZZES)

(DOORKNOB TWISTS) (DOORBELL BUZZES)

(DOORKNOB TWISTS)

(DOOR OPENS)

Nick!

Wait for me in the car.

Better give me that.

Why didn't you come in today like I told you?

I had things to do.

Sent your family to the country. Oh...

So that was one of your guys at the station.

Well, when you didn't show up, I started worrying about ya.

I'll do my own worrying.

Nick, our man lost Udo about an hour ago.

I came as soon as I heard.

Sorry, but I've gotta take you in.

Take me in? For what? For protection.

I'll protect myself. It's him or me now.

Nick, I can't connive with murder, yours or his.

Look, if it's me that gets him, it won't be murder, it'll be self-defense.

You're wrong. We haven't got a thing on Udo. He's acquitted.

If you kill him, murder is what any jury'll call it.

Use your head, Nick, and you'll be safe.

Yeah, but my wife and kids won't be safe.

What makes you think he'd go after them? Rizzo's mother.

Oh. Well, we'll take care of your family, too.

You mean, you'll lock us up for the rest of our lives?

No. Only until Udo makes his next mistake.

Till he knocks somebody else off. Till he does anything.

Nick, he's a three-time loser now.

All we've got to do is catch him with a gun on him and we can send him up for life.

And suppose he don't make a mistake?

He didn't the last time.

You made the mistake.

You had a perfect case, and he beat you on it.

You couldn't even keep a tail on him. He's nuts, and he's smarter than you are.

Sooner or later, he'll trip himself up. They all do. Trust me, Nick.

I'm through trusting you, the police or anybody but me.

There's only one way to get Udo, and that's my way.

Even if you were right, I couldn't take the responsibility.

I'm sorry, Nick. You're under arrest.

On what charge? You've gotta have a charge.

Violation of parole is enough.

Well, I guess that's that.

That's better.

It won't appear on your record.

You came to us for protection.


(JAZZ MUSIC PLAYS)


I don't think we have any tables tonight, Mr Bianco.

I'm not looking for a table. Is Tommy Udo here?

No.

Thanks. I'll see ya again.

I wouldn't come back if I was you.

(DOORBELL RINGS)

Remember me? Yes.

I got a date here with Tommy Udo. Udo isn't here.

That's okay. I'll wait for him. (FIRMLY) Udo isn't here.


WAITER: How do you do, Mr Udo? Hello. How are you?


(RINGING)

Hello? Mr D'Angelo.

Nick, where are ya? We got a general alarm out for ya.

Never mind that. I found Tommy Udo.

Yeah? Where is he?

I told you we were gonna play this my way.

Now, you listen to me. Udo's my job. You keep out of this.

Take it easy, Mr D'Angelo. The only reason I'm calling is that I may need some help.

Now, get this, I want you to come to the 37th Precinct Police Station.

Bring some men with you from Homicide.

If my plan doesn't work, I'll be calling you there.

How long will it take you to get uptown?

About twenty minutes, but Nick...

I'll give you a half hour.

When you get to the police station sit tight and wait for my call.

D'ANGELO: 37th Precinct.


Hello. Oh, hello.

You are too late to eat, mister. We close at twelve.

I'm looking for Tommy Udo.

He's not here.

Tell him Nick Bianco wants to see him.

You wait. I'll see if anyone knows where he is.


Hello, Tommy. Well, the big man. My pal. (CHUCKLING)

They tell me you've been lookin' for me. I had to talk to you, Tommy.

Go ahead, talk. I'm listening. I'd like to talk to you not these characters.

You crummy stoolie. Who asked you anything?

My pal wants to talk to me. Go on, beat it.

Okay, pal. What's on your mind?

I gotta square myself with you, Tommy. There's nothin' to square.

You're my pal.

You're smart, too. (CHUCKLING)

I didn't know how smart till I saw you in court.

You fooled me, and that takes a big man.

Yeah, a big man.

Okay. Play it straight, Tommy.

I squealed on you.

You've got a right to be sore.

What are you gonna do about it? I ain't gonna do nothin'.

You did nothin' to me. They acquitted me, didn't they?

We're goin' right on being pals, you and me.

We're gonna have some fun together.

Lots of fun, just like we used to.

You got a wife and kids, ain't ya, pal?

Yeah.

They're gonna have some fun too.

I'm gonna enjoy meetin' your family.

Lay off of 'em, Tommy. Why, huh?

Kids like to have fun.

We'll all have some fun together.

You and me and your wife and your kids.

From now on, lots of fun.

I'm telling you, lay off of 'em.

Is that all you've got to say to me?

Okay.

I thought you'd listen to reason.

But if it's trouble you're looking for, you're gonna get it.

Leave me and my family alone, or maybe I ain't through singing.

What of it, pal? I'm clean. They can't try me twice on the same rap.

No. Not on the Larry Young job.

Maybe I know some other tunes.

When we were together, you told me a lot of things.

You got your eyes full of smoke and you talk plenty, just like the squirt that you are.

You talked your fool head off, and I ain't forgetting any of it.

You gave me enough to burn you a hundred times over if I can get the other witnesses to back me up.

And you even gave me a pretty good idea where to look for those other witnesses.

You ain't carrying anything in your pocket, Tommy.

You're dumb, but you're not that dumb.

You'd get life if they found a gun on ya.

Now, remember this:

Touch my family, and you will hear singing like you never heard before.

Go on, beat it!

Peddle your papers.

Go on! Blow!

Luigi? Yes, sir? Yes, Mr Udo?

This is my pal Mr Bianco. He's a big man, the biggest man in town.

I want to show him what I think of him.

I want you to give him your deluxe jour dinner.

But Mr Udo, the kitchen is closed.

Then open it, you squirt!

Yes, sir.

Yes, Mr Udo.

Nothing's too good for my pal.

The deluxe jour dinner and a bottle of that good wine. Got it?

Yes, sir.

Yes, Mr Udo. Right away.

Enjoy yourself, big man.

Enjoy your dinner.

Everything's on me.

(CHUCKLING)


Mr D'Angelo from the DA's office, please.

Hello, Nick, I...

Trace this call, will ya?

Listen. I just talked with Tommy Udo.

I tried to scare him off, but it didn't work.

There's only one thing for me to do now.

I'm gonna hand him to you on a silver platter.

I'm gonna give him to ya the way you want him.

With a gun in his hand.

Nick, for the love of heaven, where are you? We'll come and get you.

I'm setting him up for you, Mr D'Angelo.

He's waiting for me outside this place in a black sedan.

I've needled him to the point where he's gotta get me.

It'll take you two minutes to get here.

In exactly two minutes, I'm going through that door.

Nick, wait a minute. He'll shoot to kill.

Maybe he does. Maybe he doesn't.

Come in from both ends of the street.

Don't come with your sirens, or he'll throw his gun away.

Now, get it. The name of the place is Luigi's, on 125th Street, just around the corner from where you are.

You know a place called Luigi's? Yes, sir. I know it.

Luigi's, okay. Now, come on.

You've got exactly two minutes.

Don't miss.


What's the matter? Don't you want your dinner?

Eat it yourself.

Here. Keep this as a souvenir.

And in case anybody asks you, remember I gave it to you.

(IGNITION STARTS)

What's the matter, big man, you turned yellow?

You used to do your own shooting.

Give me that gun.

(MANIC LAUGHING) You squirt!

(GUNSHOT)

(GUNSHOT)

(TYRES SQUEALING) (GUNSHOTS CONTINUE)

(GUNSHOT)

(GUNSHOT)

D'ANGELO: Get an ambulance.

Nick?

Did you get him?

And alive.

Thanks, Nick.

NETTIE: Sometimes out of the worst comes the best.

Mr D'Angelo got what he wanted.

Nick got what he wanted.

And I got all I ever wanted.

I got Nick.

(MUSIC SWELLS)