Laughter in Paradise (1951) Script

[narrator] Here, in this mansion, in a quiet London square, a man lies dying.

And as he dies, the world remembers the feats which made him famous.

The outrageous pranks, which time and again shook officialdom to its very foundations.

Yes, Henry Augustus Russell will soon be joining the great majority.

It's hard to believe that this frail, ghostlike figure was once the greatest practical joker of modern times.

The dusky eastern potentate who so nearly purchased the Albert Hall.

The bronzed Red Indian chief, feted for swimming the Channel complete with feathered headdress and tomahawk.

Goodbye, Henry Russell.

Your last practical joke is done.

Oris it?




Telegram for Miss Agnes Russell.

Thank you.

Oh. Will you please wait here?

Come in.

Excuse me, ma'am, there's a telegram.

That's no excuse to come in here looking like a chimney sweep.

Go and put your apron on at once!

Yes, ma'am.

But the boy's waiting for a reply.

Well, let him wait. That's what he's paid for.

Yes, ma'am.


Ethel, do you see this photograph?

Yes, ma'am.

[Agnes] Well, don't stand there. Come here!

Yes, ma'am. It's my brother. He died this morning.

Oh, I am sorry, ma'am.

The photograph is smothered with dust.

If I'd known the poor gentleman had passed away, oh, I'd...

It should not be necessary for people to die in order to have their photographs dusted.

No, ma'am.

I'm ever so sorry about your bad news, ma'am.

You have reason to be.

Because I shall now be able to afford some servants who know their duty.

You can take a fortnight's notice from today.

[whimpers] Now go!


[sobbing continues]

Mr Russell, it's useless arguing.

If every bank clerk in every bank in England was half a crown short in his calculations every week, do you know how much that would cost?


If you'd like to let me have pencil and paper, sir, I'll work it for you if you really want to know.

I don't want to know. I want you to think about it.

Oh, yes, sir.

It's a very disturbing thought, sir.

But sometimes, sir, it isn't easy.

If it was easy, Mr Russell, there would be no need for bank clerks.

Yes... No, sir.

[knocking] Come in.

Sorry to disturb you, sir.

There's a person in the bank asking for Mr Russell.

Let one of the other clerks deal with him.

It's a personal visit, sir, a lady. A Mrs Goodwin.

Oh? Who might this lady be?

Oh, no, sir, she's not a lady. She's my landlady.

The bank, Mr Russell, is no place for a music hall repartee.

Get rid of her at once.

Yes, sir.

Yes, sir.

[door closes]

So sorry to worry you like this, sir, but she was most...

Wipe that sycophantic smile off your face.

Hello, Mrs Goodwin.

Oh, Mr Russell, I thought I'd better pop in.

Just after you left, a telegraphic communication arrived for you, and I thought it might be urgent.

I didn't open it, of course, so I don't know what there may be in it, but I think you should be prepared for some rather sad news.

Oh, Mr Russell. Was he very dear to you?

Pray accept my heartiest condolences.

Oh, thank you, Mrs Goodwin. Thank you.

Not at all, I'm sure.

Well, see you at supper.


Not bad news I hope.

Yes, in a way, Miss Heath.

A distant cousin of mine has just died.

Henry Russell, you probably read about him.

He was always telling me that I...

I lack push. Yes, push, I think it was.


Why don't you go and ask Mr Wagstaffe for the afternoon off?

Everyone does on these occasions.

Oh, no, I couldn't.

Go on. Show you've got some push.

Go on.

Yes. Why not?


I jolly well will.

[Mr Wagstaffe] Come in!




A distant cousin of mine has just died, sir.

How distant?

A long way off, sir. What about it, then?

Well, it seems I'm a beneficiary under his will, sir.

Just because you've come into a few pounds doesn't mean that you can behave like a millionaire.

You'll be asking for the afternoon off next.

Oh, no, sir.

Oh, no.


I'll raise you a fiver.

Your five... and ten more, Russell.

Ha, a tenner, huh?

I'll see you.



How high?

Four kings.

If you beat that, I'll eat my cigar.

Better start eating, old son.

Four aces.

Telegram, sir. Open it, Benson.

Bad luck, old boy, but I did have the decency not to raise you.

Very kind of you, Simon, I'm sure.

Well, I hate fleecing a pal in my own flat.

What? [chuckles]

Why, this is fantastic.

Well, you'll have to carry on without me, so make yourselves at home.

There's plenty of whisky.

Oh, I like that. [door closes]

You must pardon Mr Russell, sir. He's had some very sad news.

My heart bleeds for him. [all chuckle]

Hello? Mr Endicott? Yes, Simon Russell here.

I just got your wire. Is it true?

Oh, splendid!

Yes, I thought it might've been another of those infernal practical jokes of his.

[laughs] See you on Wednesday at the celebration.

Huh? Oh, of course, I mean the funeral. I'm sorry. Goodbye.

I I'm happy as a lark ♪ Benson, my dinner jacket. I'm celebrating tonight.

Now look here. Get on to Christine and tell her...

No, no. She drinks too much.

Call Zena and tell her to meet me at The Garter.

She's always a certainty. [hums]

[man] Are you ready, Miss Wilcott?

Yes. Good.

Blood Lust, a novel by Jeremy Sinclair.

Chapter one entitled "Sweet Meeting." Paragraph:

I walked into the room and there stood Petal, her silken hair languorously caressing one fair cheek, her lips red and inviting.

I walked over to her and slugged her on the mouth.

[yawns] No, no, no, change that.

Change that, Miss Wilcott, to "slugged her on the kisser."


Before going down, she threw me a single glance of searing hate suffused with scorn.

She was certainly a swell tomato.

Oh, that's a beautiful beginning, Captain Russell, it really is.

I'm afraid it's all rather disgusting, really, but...

Well, they seem to like the American touch.

[exhales] Well, um...

To proceed.

[, uh, I leaned over her as she lay on the floor, her green eyes half-closed, her bruised lips curled in a slightly contemptuous smile.

"Petal," I whispered, "I love you. I love you."


"I love you."

Three "I love yous"? That's right.

Then four dots and four asterisks.

[phone rings] Ah, bother.

Captain Deniston Russell's secretary.

Who wants him, please?

Oh, just a moment.

It's your fiancée.

Thank you.

Uh, hello, dear.

Yes. Yes, dear. I said I'd phone you at 6:00.

Well, it's... [chuckles] It's only two minutes past, you know.

Sorry, dear.

Oh, just dictating letters, paying bills, you know?

Yes, dear.

Oh, dear. Really, dear?

Goodbye, dear.

Well, now, where were we, hmm?

Dot, dot, dot, dot, asterisk, asterisk...

Four asterisks. Oh, yes.

A convulsive tremor shook her slender frame and Petal moaned.

Miss Wilcott?

Petal moaned.

I know it's none of my business, but I think you ought to tell her.

Tell who what?

Your fiancée about you being a writer.

If you're getting married in a fortnight.

I couldn't do that. Oh, dear. Good gracious, no.

Oh, she'd never approve.

I mean, it's not as if I were a Bernard Shaw.

Oh, but she'd be proud of you.

Not many people can get a book published at all, and look at you, scores of them.

And under 15 different names too.

Yes, well, I'm afraid Elizabeth doesn't consider this sort of thing art.

Well, if you ask me, I think she's a... But I didn't ask you, Miss Wilcott.

Now shall we proceed?

A convulsive tremor shook her slender frame and Petal moaned.

Petal moaned... [phone rings]

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.

Hello, Deniston Russell here.

What? Telegram? Yes, yes, I'll take it.


Just a moment.


Thank you. Thank you very much.

Well, well, well.

Cousin Henry's dead.

Murdered? No, no, no, no.

Very peaceful.

He seems to have left me a lot of money.

Oh, good. Good?

No, I was very fond of Cousin Henry.

He was a remarkable man.

He was rich. He was very rich.

Well, at least this ought to put an end to my having to write this sort of stuff.

[chuckles] Goodbye to Blood Lust.

Goodbye to Merton Somersby and Jeremy Sinclair and Gloria Trubshaw.

Captain Russell.

You wouldn't give up writing just because you got a bit of money.

It would be a crime, you couldn't.

No, no, no. Of course not, Miss Wilcott. But don't you see now?

Now I can afford to write under my own name.

Uh, but good books, great books.

Yes, books that will... Books that will live.

As you all know, our old friend Henry scorned the use of a solicitor in drawing up of his last will and, uh...

Testament? Thank you.

So he called upon me, his oldest and dearest friend, to help him.

It was a melancholy occasion because he knew that his... End.

Thank you.

He knew that his end was near.

With your permission, I will omit the preliminaries and merely read the essential... [Simon] Points.


Good idea. Let's hear how much we get.

To each of you he has left the sum of £50,000.

But before you become entitled to this money, there are certain tasks of a somewhat unusual nature, which must be carried out by each of you.

I might've known it.

These tasks must be carried out to the letter and may not be divulged, in any circumstances, to anybody outside this room.

And each of you must take a solemn oath to that effect.

Well, what are these ridiculous provisions?

I will now proceed to read them.

My sister, Agnes Russell, who, for many years, has made life a purgatory for those who she considers her inferiors, shall, for a period of not less than one calendar month and within one week of the reading of this will, obtain a post as a domestic servant in a middle-class home.

How dare he!

Should she, for any reason whatsoever, be dismissed or resign from this post before the end of this month, she shall forfeit her share in my fortune.

I shall contest the will.

I forgot to add that if any one of you contests the will, the whole fortune for all of you will be forfeited.

In that case, Cousin Agnes will not contest the will.

But I tell you that... My second cousin, Captain Deniston Russell, Royal Army Pay Corps, retired, whose hideous secret I must now reveal to you, has become a writer of penny dreadfuls in the worst possible taste and style.

How on earth did he find out?

You? A writer?

And in the worst possible taste too.

Aren't they a bit, uh... Certainly not.

The gallant captain shall spend not less and not more than 28 days in one of His Majesty's London prisons... having been properly sentenced for a genuine crime committed by himself within one week of the reading of this will.

Should he fail in this endeavour, he shall forfeit his share of my fortune.



Oh, but I... I'm to be married in a fortnight.

And to the daughter of a magistrate.

Well, perhaps you'll marry her in prison.

Oh, no. That's only for expectant mothers.

My fourth cousin twice-removed, Herbert Russell, who has surely failed in the baking world owing to his determination to be bullied, shall, with the aid of a mask and a toy pistol, hold up his current bank manager in his own office in the manner of one of his cousin Deniston's fictional gangsters and will force him to hand over the keys of the bank.

Should he fail or be unmasked or overpowered before two minutes are up, his share of the fortune shall be forfeited.

Bu-bu-but how... How could [?

How could he...

It's impossible.

Not even a real gangster would dare to point a gun at Mr Wagstaffe.

Or point anything at Mr Wagstaffe.

My first cousin, Simon Russell, who has gone through life at the expense of others' hearts and pockets, shall marry the first unmarried woman to whom he speaks after the reading of this will, of no matter what age.

Should his well-known charm fail to persuade the lady to marry him, his share of my fortune shall be forfeited.

Easy! [chuckles]

I always knew he liked me best. Hmm.

Thanks, Cousin Henry.

Nevertheless, we must all stand together and contest the will.

Perhaps you'd like to... [laughs]

You can tell Cousin Agnes that she's the last woman I shall speak to first.

What's she grumbling about anyway?

Nobody in their proper mind would sack a servant with the present shortage.

After all, 50,000 quid is 50,000 quid.

Before we come to the taking of the solemn oath, there is one small formality to be carried out.

We must all rise.


All rise.

[Simon] Come along. Upsy-daisy.

Step this way.

And drink a toast to our beloved benefactor while singing a verse of that popular melody "For He's a Jolly Good"... Um...

Fellow? Exactly.

Face our dear benefactor.

Raise your glasses.

Raise your glasses.

And sing with me. [glass chimes]

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ And so say all of us ♪

♪ And so say all of us ♪

♪ And so say all of us ♪

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ For he's a jolly good fellow &

♪ And so say all of us ♪ Now drink to our dear departed.

[chuckles] Ask Cousin Agnes if I can give her a lift to the nearest employment exchange.


How about you, Herbert? Can I drop you at the gunsmith?

What for?

Well, you can't hold up a bank with a fountain pen.

Oh, no. I'm going to get that at a toy shop.

That's the least of my worries.

It's where I'm going to find the courage that's puzzling me.

Look, Herbert, there's a little work of mine called The Bank Bandit.

It might give you a few pointers.

I'll be glad to put it in the post for you.

Oh, thank you.

[laughs] Well, hop in, both of you.

No, I think I'll get my bus at the corner.

Goodbye. Goodbye.

Goodbye. Goodbye, Herbert.

Come on, Edgar Wallace. I'll buy you a snifter.

How-how-how on earth do you afford a vehicle like this?

I don't, old boy. Got it on appro.

Just keep it a week, then send it back. Say you don't want it.

Give you the address if you want to try. [chuckles]

Two more large whiskies, please, George. Certainly, sir.

Cheer up, old boy.

It's only a matter of time.

Everything seemed so rosy this morning.

The hope of money to come, marriage in a fortnight.

But now instead of a honeymoon in Harrogate, prison in Pentonville.

I fear I shall lose my Elizabeth.

Oh, nonsense. She'll stand by you if she's good, scout.

Elizabeth is an officer and a lady. [chuckles]

Well, just tell her it's worth 50,000 smackers, and I'm sure she'll be delighted with the whole affair.

I would remind you, Russell, that we have both taken a most solemn oath not to divulge the contents of the will.

Yes, so we have.

Well, look here.

If she does give you the bird, what about palming her off on me?

Certainly not.

What a disgusting suggestion!

To marry, I mean. [laughs]

Thirty shillings for you. Huh.

Huh, remarkable thing. I've come out without my wallet.

Lend me a fiver, old boy.


Better make it a tenner. Easier to remember.

What on earth's that?

That is Elizabeth.

You're dead right, old boy. Not my cup of tea at all.

[laughing] I should hope not.

Look, I must telephone her now.

Box is over there. Oh, thank you.

With all this on my mind, I just cannot face her tonight.

Couldn't face her any night.


Want a ciggy? Oh, no, sweetie.

No, I'm smoking cigars from now on.

What about a date later on this evening? I feel like celebrating.

Look, I don't want that old goat in the telephone box to see us talking.

Why? Well, don't think me mad, but just for the moment I'm not allowed to talk to women.

Don't I count as a woman?

You see, dear, something has occurred.

But you promised to take me out tonight, and I've had a bath specially.

I got some splendid news for you about my wedding leave.

Commandant Borthwaite's given me 28 days.

Mmm, 28.

Twenty-eight days?


Oh, dear. I know...

Yes, dear, of course, of course.

It could be splendid. But you see...

Well, you see, he said you only get spliced once and might as well enjoy it. [laughs]

Huh? Huh?

Denny, postpone our wedding? After ten years?

You're not serious.

You don't mean it.

Well, what am I to say to Commandant Borthwaite and the girls?

They've... they've bought us a toast rack and everything.

You're breaking my heart, that's all.

No, you can't explain.

All right, then. Tomorrow morning at 11:00.

On the dot!




Daddy, did you hear that?

Did you hear it?

I told you so. Shifty customer.

Always said so, always will.

Never liked him, never shall.

Sort of fellow who will end up in the hands of the police.

Now you see, Scott's got the ball.

He tricks the outside left, lobs down to Mercer, Mercer heads it down to Compton, Compton kicks it down, passes it to Logie.

Logie to Louis, Louis up to the outside right, what's his name?

Roper? Roper, Roper.

He slides in and he slams...


Good evening. Yes?

Uh, look, I am most anxious to go to prison for 28 days, and I wondered if you had any suggestions.

[laughing] Well, have you committed any crime, felony or breach of the peace?

No, not yet.

Though, within reason, I am prepared to.

Then get out of here. Can't you see we're very busy?

Go on, Eddy. Roper had the ball. What happened?

Wait, I don't think you quite understand.

For reasons which I cannot divulge, I must go to prison.

And I've come for your advice.

You've had it. Now hop it.

Oh, look here, my man. I'm asking a perfectly civil question.

And you got a civil answer. Now hop it.

I'm a taxpayer.

What is more, I'm a personal friend of the commissioner.

Then I should go and see him, sir.

You'll find that he's far less busy than we are.

Good evening, Benson.

Your lord and master is now a man of substance.

Congratulations, sir. How much?

50,000 smackers, Benson. 50,000 iron men.

Splendid, sir, splendid.

In that case, we might have a little chat about my arrears of salary.

Er, quite. But I shall have to borrow a few more quid just to see me through the testing period.

Oh. Oh, in that case, we haven't been left anything at all, is that it, sir?

No, it isn't, Benson. Now sit down. Listen to me.

I shouldn't be telling you this because I made a solemn oath not to do so, so I rely on your discretion.

Oh, honour among thieves, Scout's honour and all that.

Well, carry on, sir.

Well, it's like this.

Now I forfeit the whole darn lot if I don't marry the first unmarried girl I speak to.

[chuckles] Of course, I shan't take any notice of that.

Oh, naturally not, sir.

Ah, but I must choose carefully, Benson.

In fact, I'm just as keen to find someone with a tidy bank account of her own.

After all, I don't want to get landed with a gold digger now that I'm rich.

You listening, Benson?

Oh, yes, sir. I see your point.

Since hearing your bad news, several young ladies have telephoned their heartfelt sympathy.

That's what I mean, you see? They're closing in already.

Shocking bad taste with the old boy hardly cold.

Oh, quite, sir. Quite.

Well, if I might be allowed to offer some advice, why not leave town and spend a few days on the boat?

Good idea, Benson. I'll go tomorrow.

I'll take my car... Oh, better send the other one back to Sports Cars Ltd.

Give them the usual spiel: I wasn't satisfied.

Then bolt the front door, disconnect the telephone.

This is worse than the bailiff's, Benson.

How right you are, sir. But don't worry, I'll look after you.


[whistle blowing]

[all] Good morning. Good morning.

Don't forget tonight.

6:30 sharp, best bib and tucker. All right.

Oh, Miss Heath.


It's such a lovely day today, I wonder whether you'd like to come to the pictures with me tonight.

Oh, I... There's a particular picture that I want to see. It's...

It's all about a hold-up man.

I'd love to, Mr Russell, but unfortunately, Mr Stewart has asked me to go out with him tonight.

Mr Wagstaffe's mail, Mr Russell.

Oh, thank you, Mr Stewart.

"Unfortunately" did you say?

Of course, if you'd rather go out with Handsome Herbert...

Why are you always so nasty about him?

Little twerp.

Reach! Reach for the sky.

Come on. Stick 'em up.

No mucking about.

Come on. I said no mucking about.

Reach, brother, for the sky.

Come on. Stick 'em up.

I haven't any time to waste.

Apparently you have.

One of the signs of softening of the brain is talking to oneself.

Watch it, Mr Russell. Watch it.

Get back to your work. Yes, sir.

Extraordinary behaviour.

You said something, sir? No, I was talking to myself.

Get out. Yes, sir.

Get out!

In your advertisement about a domestic, you mentioned references.

I haven't done this sort of work before, so I'm afraid that...

Oh, don't worry about that...

I'm sorry. I've forgotten your name again.

Miss Agnes Russell.

Well, I'll be frank with you, Agnes. We've had quite a number of servants here.

Some with excellent references, but none of them have lasted.

But I'm sure you'll do us very well.


That'll be my father.

I expect he wants to see you. Shall we go up?

[thumping continues]

Aren't men impatient?

You know, my father's a semi-invalid and...

Oh, but he's not really very ill. Please.

Father, this is our new helper.

An older instance. What's your name?

Agnes Russell.

Then it's Bertha from now on, my girl.

All the others were Bertha, and a rotten lot they were.

I'm sure Agnes will do us very well, Father.

We'll see. Can you cook, Bertha?


Then you can cook my supper tonight. There's a steak in the larder.

You don't make a mess of it, now.

[stammers] You're a sour face.

I like happy people about me. Smile.

Go on, smile.

That's better.

He likes you. He likes you very much.

He does.

I I'm as happy as a lark A lark, a lark ♪ I I'm as happy as a dog Bum, bum, bum, bum ♪

[brakes squealing]

[Simon] Hello, there.

I say, are you in difficulties?

Don't bother, thank you. I can manage.

Oh, it's no bother at all.

What's the trouble?

I don't quite know. It just stopped.

Has it got any petrol? Oh, yes.

My chauffeur filled it up this morning.

Just stubborn, huh? Got far to go?

Eaton. My brother's at school there, and I've promised to take him out.

It's maddening.

Leave it to me. Thank you.


Do you know anything about cars? Not a thing.


Well, if you ask me, a circumventer on the... ubiquitous paraxial is...


Fused or blown.

You can tell just by looking at it?

Oh, one gets a knack, you know. Like doctors lifting your eyelid and knowing your great-grandmother was a dipsomaniac. [laughs]

Can I give you a lift somewhere?

If you would. To a telephone.

It's a pleasure. Come along.

I'll ring my chauffeur to come and collect the beastly thing.

Will he know about paraxial, um, thingamajigs?

I doubt it. Very few people do.

I hate that car anyway.

I much prefer my big one.

Your big one? Uh-huh.

Huh. Well, you'll have to forgive old Griselda.

Both mine are in dock.

This thing belongs to my butler.

I think she's sweet.

And I'm very grateful to both of you. [chuckles]

[engine cranks]

[continues cranking]

Huh. [engine starts]

What did you say your name was? [laughs]

I didn't. It's Lucille Grayson.

How do you do? Simon Russell. How do you do?

I'm going to make a very impertinent suggestion.

Instead of you singing the "Eaton Boating Song" with your brother, why not come boating with me?

My cruiser's just along the road. On the water, of course.

Oh, no, thank you. I couldn't possibly.

My uncle would raise Cain if he heard I'd been out with strange men.

Oh. There's only one of me, and I'm not all that strange.

In fact, I've behaved pretty normally on the whole.

It's very tempting, Mr Russell.

But I must say no.

No? Yes.


Do you really know anything about cars?

No. Nothing at all?

Nothing at all.

How clever of you. [chuckles]

Do you like my little boat? Mmm, very much.

It's small, of course.

I'm getting another one soon with a big funnel.

Comfy? Mm-hmm.

Lucky you had two of these mattress things.

Yes, I was here last weekend with a business pal.

He left his lipstick behind.


I wonder how that got here.

I'm beginning to wonder how I did.

Not regretting it, are you?

Not yet. But I shall.

My uncle wouldn't approve of this at all.

Like all very rich men, he wants to run everybody else's life.

You poor sweet. I know the form.

You can't tell him to go to blazes or he'll cut you off with a shilling.

No, he can't do that. The money's in trust for me.

That's good.

That's very good.


No. No!

Deniston, I will not postpone our wedding without a reason.

No, you can't fob me off like that.

Fluffy, I wouldn't dream of fobbing you.

[Sir Charles] Nonsense!

This is the clearest case of fobbing that's ever come my way.

You've been dilly-dallying with my daughter for ten years.

Only because of my financial situation, Sir Charles.

What's happened to it now?

Nothing, nothing. I only ask for a slight postponement of 28 days.


Well, I know you'll understand when I tell you that I have given my solemn oath not to divulge the reasons.

But when we got engaged, ten years ago... you solemnly swore we wouldn't have any secrets from each other.

Except, of course, official ones.

Oh... Oh, but this is official in a way.

You see, Fluffy, in strict confidence, I have to go away for a month.

Officially? Officially.

For the government?

Well, the government will be paying my expenses.

[Sir Charles] What's that?

Just a minute. I thought the Pay Corps kicked you out five years ago.

I shall not be in uniform, Sir Charles.

At least, I don't think so.

No, well... Will you excuse me?

I really have to go. I have to catch my train.

Denny, you're not going behind the Iron Curtain?


I suppose you could put it like that.

Daddykins, he's in the secret service, and all this time we thought he was doing nothing.

Oh, Denny. My brave Denny boy.

Fluffy, dear.

Look, I promise you that as soon as ever I am free...

Free to talk... I'll explain everything.

Oh, no need to explain when duty calls.

Quite right. Now don't go land yourself in one of those filthy gaols.

No, but I... No, no.

Well, will you excuse me, Sir Charles? I must catch my train.

Well, good luck. I'm sorry I was a bit shirty with you.

I know you won't be able to write, but I shall be watching the newspapers and hoping so much there won't be any news of you.

Oh, the newspapers.

Oh, yes, hope that. Please hope that.

King's Cross station, please.

Good luck, and if they catch you, none of those confessions, mind.

Goodbye, dear boy. Goodbye.

Not the railway station, the police station.

[clears throat]

Good morning, Inspector. Do you remember me?


Yes, I do remember you. Go on, get out of here...

Please, please listen. You see, I am a writer, and it's necessary for one of my characters to go to prison for a month.

I only thought that you might tell me a few crimes that would fit the bill.

Look, here's a little opus of mine, if you would care to...

It's about football. It's about football, eh?

The whole of the Cup Final team get poisoned on the eve of the match.

[chuckles] Death and the FA Cup.

Ha! Oh, no, no, please.

Keep it if you'd care to.

For me? Yes.

That's very kind of you, sir. Thank you. Not at all.

Well, you know, I'm always ready to support the arts as it were.

[both laugh]

I dare say, Archibald ought to be able to help us.

Oh? Who... who is Archibald?

The encyclopaedia of crime.

Oh, look, I want it to be a very respectable crime.

Nothing... nothing nasty.

You see, he's a very upright and honourable man, and I can't possibly have my... Uh, his reputation soiled in any way.

Besides, he has to get the heroine.

Happy ending, eh? Oh, yes.

That's the stuff to give 'em.

I'm so glad you understand.

Now let's see, there's, uh...

There's trains.

There's lots of things happening in trains.

Oh, you'd be surprised.

Most of them go for about six months, though.

Oh, no. No, no.

Bag snatching ain't bad.

Look, I'll take a note of one or two of these.

Yes, do that. If you don't mind.

Here, borrow this. Thank you.

Bag snatching. Bag snatching...

Then there's, uh... shoplifting.

Yes, shoplifting.

They're getting very down on that nowadays, you know.

Especially among the upper classes.

Then there's... Ooh, I think I got it here.

[chuckles] Well, I may be wrong.

How about stealing lead from churches?

Just climb up on the roof and rip it off. Oh, no, no. No, I...

Uh, he has no head for heights.

Oh, that's a pity.

Well, um, car stealing is very popular, you know.

Yes. Yes, car stealing.

Yeah, put that down. Might be excellent.

[bell ringing]

Oh, all right.

[bell continues ringing]

All right, all right, all right!

Shut the window.

My feet are cold!

Don't stand there gaping, my dinner will spoil.

[bell ringing]

[bell continues ringing]


All right, all right, all right.


Do you have asthma?

[panting] No. Then stop puffing like a train, it gets on my nerves.

You left the door open.

Shut it when you go.

Is that all you... Go on!

[no audible dialogue]


You're fired!

Mr Webb, I beg you to reconsider this.

The only matter for consideration is whether I kick you out now or tomorrow morning.

I'm willing to work for no wages.

Still too expensive.

In fact, I'm willing to pay you to let me stay.


I only ask to remain a month.

If you let me stay, ['ll...

I'll give you £1,000.

What did you say?

£1,000. You're off your head.

I know it sounds insane. Don't come near me.

But I mean it. Go-go-go and lie down.

I'll put it in writing! Get out!

Away with you!

[door closes] Potty.

Completely potty.

[bell rings]


You rang for me?


But not to appear like something out of a French farce.

Away, put your clothes on.

Ah, never mind. You look terrible anyway.

Take those flowers out, they're eating up the oxygen.

And you dare to send for me just for that?

Ah-ah. Keep a civil tongue in your head.

Why should 1? You've dismissed me, haven't you?

I'll say what I like.

And here and now I'd like to say that you're the most detestable, abominable old man it's ever been my misfortune to encounter.

A pity.

Because I'd changed my mind about sending you away.

-Anything to say about that?- I-

Mind you, it's not for your £1,000, which obviously doesn't exist.

But it does and I mean it.

Nor for your beauty or efficiency, which don't exist either.

But purely for my own convenience until I can find somebody better.

Which shouldn't be difficult.

See the door closes when you go.


The flowers.

Hmm, your handsome Herbert seems to be a little late this morning.

He may not be handsome, but at least he's not a wolf at the Hammersmith Palais.

Naughty, naughty.

What on earth are you doing, Mr Stewart?

Leave that young lady alone.

And in Mr Wagstaffe's office too.

I think Miss Heath is capable of looking after herself.

Oh, no, she isn't. Not while I'm here to stop her.

Thank you, Mr Russell, but it's quite all right.

Oh, no, it isn't. Now you run along and leave this to me.

Now look here, Stewart.

I'm not going to stand for any nonsense with Miss Heath.

Oh, go away.

Go away, little man.

All right! Little man I may be, but not for long.

Let me tell you that

0-0-0-one day, I'll come in here in a Rolls-Royce.

And I'll have an overdraft of 20,000.

Or more! And you'll be calling me sir.

[laughs] I'd like to see that.

[mockingly laughs] Yes. Well, sometimes worms change their... th-th-th-their spots!

And when I do, I'll march in here without knocking and I'll-I'll-I'-I'll sit on the desk.

And I'll say, "Hello, Wagstaffe. How's"...


Fool! Look what you've done to my suit.

Oh, I'm terribly sorry, Mr Stewart.

You'll pay for this.

Oh, no, it was both of our faults, really.

Oh, no.

You wait until Mr Wagstaffe hears about this.

Oh, bother, Mr Wagstaffe.

Mr Wagstaffe, Mr Wagstaffe.

Come on. Don't just stand there, help me pick them up.

Come on...

And what are you doing now, Mr Russell?

It's your wife again, sir. She's... gone to pieces.

Mr Russell, how long you remain with us, I don't know, but I hope not long.

But until you go, you won't set foot in my office again.

Yes, sir. No, sir.

Oh, but sir, I-

That is an order, Mr Russell!

Father, what are you doing?

Searching her belongings. What do you think I'm doing?

Why, it's a dreadful thing to do. [doorbell rings]

You mind your own business and answer the bell.

That'll be the detective. Detective?

Oh, Father, not again. Just as we get someone good at last.

Away you go! Oh...


I thought so.

I, um... I have an appointment with Mr Webb.

If you're from the police, you're wasting your time.

Oh, I'm not from the police. I'm a private enquiry agent, Mrs, uh...

Or Miss? Miss.

What private enquiry there can be about that poor soul, I can't imagine.

Good morning, sir. Your detective.

A bit young, aren't you?

For what, sir?

Never you mind. Listen to me.

Last night, I sacked my maid, whereupon she offered me £1,000 to let her stay for a month.

Did she, now? Father, isn't that going a bit too far?

Precisely. That's why I sent for you.

Nobody in their right mind would stay in this house a minute longer than they need.

I don't agree, sir.

[clears throat] You're here to do a job of work, not to be flippant.

Sit down. Sorry, sir.

Now then, either she's cracked and has escaped from some asylum, or she's a criminal lying low. I tend to think she's a criminal.

This identity card, it's obviously false.

Look at it.

No 30-bob-a-week domestic servant would live in that neighbourhood.

Certainly looks a bit odd.

What do you want me to do about it? Check up on her.

Find out where she comes from, where she goes, everything about her.

Is she here now? No.

I gave her the afternoon off. Didn't want her spotting you.

Well? Will you take the job?

Certainly, sir. Good.

It'll be a pleasure.

Oh, ma'am! I didn't expect you.

I'll just put me apron on. If I'd known...

It doesn't matter about the apron.

Come here, please.

Have you found another post?

Oh, no, ma'am. You see, what with no references from you and...

Ethel, I...

I'm afraid I've been a little hard on you at times.

One doesn't realise.

If you care to stay with me, you can.

I shall be away about a month.

You could have a little holiday. Oh.

Oh, no, ma'am... With pay, of course.


I should like you to stay, if you will.

Oh, thank you very much, ma'am.

Yes, I will. Good.

Well, I'm going to have a little rest.

I'm rather tired.

Is Miss Agnes Russell in?

Yes. Oh, but she's asleep.

Is she? Good.

I dare say, you can help me. I'm a reporter.

Shall we go in? Oh, I suppose.

What's your name? Ethel.

Sit down, Ethel.

I know that face.

It's Russell's brother.

He passed away last week, poor gentleman.

Henry Russell? The joker?

That's right, the practical joking man.

He left her a fortune, so they say.

Did he now? How much did he leave her?

-[Agnes] Ethel -Oh! I Who is this gentleman? What does he want?

I'm glad to meet you, Miss Russell.

I'm from the Chelsea Chronicle, and I wondered if you'd give me a line or two on your brother.

I have nothing to say.

Ethel, show the gentleman out.

I don't wish to see him again.

But, Miss Russell, I'd... Please.

£5, please. [chuckles]

Oh, no, you don't understand. [... Oh, that's all right, sir. £5.

Oh, yes, of course. Of course, £5.

Thank you, sir.

[cash register dings]

[chuckles] £5.

Excuse me, please.

[saleswoman] Yes, sir?

Wrong tartan.

Wrong tartan, sir?

I'll be with you in a moment, sir.

[cash register dings]

I'm terribly sorry, sir. I beg your pardon.

I wasn't looking where I was going. Kind of my fault.

Excuse me, sir.

Did you purchase anything in the store? No, no.

Oh, yes. Yes, a pedigree pipe, £5.

Nothing else, sir? Absolutely nothing.

Would you mind just stepping into the office?

Oh, of course. I'd be delighted.

Come in here, please. Thank you.

Well, gentlemen, what can I do for you?

Have you any objection to being searched?

No, not at all. Not at all. Where would you like to begin?

This pocket.

I've been robbed. I've been robbed.

My wallet? My wallet!

I demand compensation. What have you done with it?

My wallet's gone!

I don't understand. I mean, it doesn't make sense.

Why is she working here, then? Search me.

Either practical jokes run in the family, or she's cracked as your father suggested.

Well, the doctor's with him now, but he won't be long. Will you wait?

Best not. Our Agnes may return. She mustn't spot me.

But there are some more questions I'd like to ask you.

There isn't much time now so perhaps we could have some food together tonight and discuss it.

What questions?

Oh, a few details.

After all, one must go into details in detail, you know.

Mr Godfrey, I don't often get invited out.

But if you really want me to come dine with you, do you mind asking me properly?

Madam, would you care to dine with me tonight?

I should love it... if you promise not to discuss the case.

Nothing was further from my mind. Good.

Champagne, of course.

A bottle of, uh, Krug '34 to start with.

Keep a cheaper brand on the ice for later on.

Women never know the second bottle.

Yes, Mr Simon.

Ah, Ritchie.

This is a very important date, so pass the word around to the girls that I'm not on "hello terms" for tonight.

Yes, sir. Mm-hmm.

Hello, darling.

Huh, better take that back.


Russell, your man told me I might find you here.

He had no business. And why aren't you in gaol?

That's what I've come to talk to you about.

Oh, is it? Come have a drink.

No, no, no. Look, Russell. Russell.

I'm getting a little desperate. It may be easy for people like you, but I just don't seem to be able to get into prison.

Well, don't be silly. Anyone can.

[clattering] What's in there?

Oh, burglar tools.

Oh, do keep your voice down.

Burglar tools. Come and sit down.

[clattering] What are you going to do with them?

Well, I...

You see, I thought a little housebreaking might do the trick.

Oh, well, I wish the best of luck.

Yes, but the trouble is that some people are inclined to be a little rough with burglars, and well, I thought, with your permission, of course, I might break into your flat tonight.

What? It's quite out of the question.

I shall be using it tonight, anyway.

All the better. All the better! Then you can catch me red-handed.

Now look here, old boy. I've got very important plans for tonight, and catching burglars isn't one of them.

Now you pop off and burgle someone else.

I couldn't possibly burgle somebody I didn't know.

Wouldn't be playing the game.

Oh! Do you mind? Go and pinch a car or something.

Do you mind... Quick as you can. Please, pop...

Lucille, darling, you look quite heavenly.

Who on earth is that?

Oh, he's some old crook with a hard-luck story.

Used to flog petrol coupons.

Lives on charity now. [chuckles]

Costs me a fiver every time I see him.

You're much too nice, Simon. That's your trouble.


[accordion music playing]

[dog barking] [screams]

[barking continues]

Are these things yours, sir?

No, no, no. I borrowed, uh...

Yes. Yes, they're my burglar tools.

Burglar tools? What do you want with them?

Refuse to say. Oh, well, in that case, sir, I shall have to ask you to come along with me to the station.

Oh. Certainly.

That's, uh... I'll take the bag, sir.

Yes, you take the bag.

Sergeant, I picked this man up with a set of burglar tools.

Oh, yeah? Name?

So it's you, you naughty boy. Ha!

After a bit of local colour, eh?

You want to be careful, sir, or you will land yourself in the clink.

But I want... That's all right. I quite understand.

It's okay, Cafferty. I know this gentleman.

Jeremy Sinclair, the famous author.

You know, sir, I've been enjoying that book of yours very much.

Very good stuff.

I'll lay six to one the referee murdered the outside-left. Am I right?

No, I'm afraid it was the goalkeeper's daughter.

What? But that's impossible.

Well, look, if you don't want me any more, I'll...

No, sir, you run along and drop in any time you're passing.

Always welcome. Goodnight, sir. Goodnight.

One moment, sir.

Might I have your autograph, please?

Lucille, darling, you know, I'm serious. This isn't just casual fun.

Let's sit down, shall we?

But what did I do? Nothing.

I swear to you I only... Before you say anything more, I think I'd better tell you something about myself which you don't know.


I've lied to you about myself.

You... You mean you're not what you pretend to be?

No, I'm a fraud.

Mr Simon?

No, hold it, Gustav. I may not be needing that.

You better explain yourself.

That first day we met, I wasn't going to Eaton to see my brother.

Why not?

I haven't got a brother at Eaton.

In fact, I haven't got a brother at all.

I see. So you've been fooling me. Why?

I was on my way to meet the man...

The man my uncle wants me to marry.

He's rich, he has a title and everything a girl could want but I didn't want to meet him before I met you.

Then you came along and I...

Is that all? [laughs]

Gustav, where's that bottle of champagne?

But I haven't told my uncle yet. Or the other man.

I haven't dared to until I knew whether you were serious about me.

Serious? I'm crazy about you.

Lucille, darling, will you marry me?

Oh, Simon. Yes, please.

When will you tell your uncle?

Would you like me to ring him now? Yes, do. I'll come with you.

I've got a call to make too.

Mr Simon?

Gustav, make that a magnum. Very well, sir.

Thank you.

Darling. Darling.

Benson? [laughs]

It's in the bag!

Well, put a couple of bottles on the ice and go to bed.

My heartiest congratulations, sir.

A notable achievement.

Uncle Arthur? Lucille speaking.

He's hooked. Open up a bottle of champagne and have one on me.

My heartiest congratulations, my dear.

Oh, a notable achievement.

[laughs heartily]

These flowers have just been delivered.

Who for?

For you, I suppose.

Why? I'm not dead yet.

You sent me those! I did no such thing.

You must have done. Nobody likes me enough to send me flowers.

Without wishing to appear rude, Mr Webb, I don't like you enough either.

Oh, yes, you do. Enough to offer me £1,000 to let you stay here.

But don't imagine that smothering me in blooms is gonna do the trick.

You'll leave when I want you to leave.

I have no illusions about that. [door opens]

What lovely flowers. Give them to me and get a vase and some water, will you? Yes, Miss Webb.

Who are they from?

More bribery and corruption from that idiotic maid.

Why are you all dolled up this morning?

What are you grinning at? The flowers are meant for me.

Who from? Your detective.

Why is he sending you flowers? Well, because he likes me, I suppose.

He has no business liking you. He's not paid to send you flowers.

Well, it helps him to buy them.

This must stop at once.

He has a perfect right to send me flowers, and I hope he goes on doing so.

I was out with him until midnight last night... and I expect to be much later tonight.

You'll stay in your room!

I'm sorry, Father. I won't!

You've successfully wrecked every chance I ever had.

But it can't go on like this.

It's no good, Father.

You can't want me to waste my life and become...

Well, something like that batty old spinster out there.



While the doctor's upstairs, I thought you might like a cup of tea.

Thank you, Agnes. That was very thoughtful of you.

Miss Webb, I couldn't help overhearing what you said about me upstairs.

I'm very sorry. I was overwrought and I...

Oh, don't apologise. Please.

I know well enough what I am.

It takes some people a long time to find out about themselves.

And when they do... it's too late to do anything about it.

It isn't too late for you.

How is he, Doctor?

Your father's an old humbug, my dear.

He enjoys bad health more than anyone I know.

You see, the trouble with these hypochondriacs is they can make themselves just as ill as they want to be.

He has a dicky heart, there's no denying, but it's not going to kill him unless he wants it to.

What can I do? Be gentle with him.

Try to not to cross him in any way. That might be dangerous.

Well, there's not much else you can do. I see.

Thank you, Doctor. I'll do what you said.

Goodbye, my dear.

I'll look in again tonight. Yes, Doctor.

Why, Captain Russell.

I thought you were going away.

Ah, yes, yes. I am going very shortly now.

What on earth have you got there?

A brick.

[chuckling] A brick?

I do hope you'll be back soon.

I'm just longing to get on with Blood Lust.

Ah... It's the best yet, you know.

Dear Sheila.

That's the first time you've ever called me Sheila.

Oh, is it?

Well, do forgive me. I'm not feeling very well.

In fact, I'm not myself...

Don't move, Sheila.

Now listen, dear. Don't ask any questions and don't look back.

I'll explain everything later. Please go away quickly, Sheila.

As quickly as you can. Hurry, dear.


Oh, Fluffy.

So this is your secret service?

I haven't gone yet, Fluffy.

Daddy was quite right. He warned me.

No, please. Please, listen, Fluffy... Don't call me that.

How could you do it? You're supposed to be behind the Iron Curtain and look at you.

Who was that woman? What were you giving her?

Nothing, dear. Nothing. What's in that parcel?

A brick.

This is no moment to start being funny.

You've humiliated me quite enough.

I shall apply to Commandant Borthwaite for an immediate posting overseas.

Elizabeth... No!


[horn honks]

[glass shattering]

Did you do that? Yes, he did. I saw him.

[brakes squealing]


What are you doing here?

Don't worry, it's nothing to do with you.

Where's Joan?

Now what's all this about?

Please go away. You have no right to come in here.

I have every right to know why you're out every time I telephone.

Why you've locked yourself up in this dismal house as if you were terrified of the sight of me?

I just...

Just don't want to see you any more, that's all.

Liar. Roger, please go.

Oh, no. I'm not going to stand by and watch you waste your life on that old fraud upstairs.

I'm going to see him now.

Roger, please try to understand.

I'm the only one he's got and I...

I can't leave him.

You listen, you little fool.

I want to marry you so badly that...

I'm even prepared to let your father live with us.

Ever seen one of these?

It's for a special licence.

We're going to use it tomorrow.

Oh, no.

He'd never stand the shock.

Joan, if you don't make up your mind, it will be too late.

Please, could you leave us alone for a moment?

Just for a minute.

I only want to help you if I can.


All right, but only for a moment.

You've probably found out by now that I live alone on a small income and that I'm rather a friendless sort of person.

But... perhaps you don't know why.

The answer's a simple one.

I sacrificed my youth as you are doing for someone like your father.

Like you, I received no gratitude.

No reward.

Only misery... and loneliness. But... but someone must look after him. I will.

You? Yes.

I'll stay here with him for as long as is necessary.

Go and marry your young man tomorrow.

Then come back and worry about your father.

He'd never stand it. Yes, he will. Go on.

Go on!


We're very late this morning.

A hold-up I suppose?

Hmm? A hold-up on the trains.

[chuckles] Train. Yes.

Your hat.

Thank you.

Good morning, Mr Russell.

Miss Heath.

Is Mr Wagstaffe alone just now? Yes.

I was afraid he would be.

Huh? Hmm?

Well, you know he never sees anyone between 10:00 and half past.

Well, I wanted to see him on a rather personal matter.

Would you mind stopping anyone coming in until I've... till I've finished with him. Of course.

Is something on your mind?


I hope one day you'll let me take you out to dinner and explain.

Ask me and see.

I only hope you'll come, after... after...


Mr Russell has all day to badger Mr Wagstaffe.

These two gentlemen have an appointment with him.

I'm sorry, but there's nothing in the book about it.

Then he must have forgotten to put it down.

This way, gentlemen, please.

Thank you. Thank you.

In on holiday yet, gentlemen?

No? I'm going next week. Camping.


Bit of an amateur boxer.

Two gentlemen to see you, sir.

[man] All right, put 'em up!


Reach! Reach for the sky!

Well done, Russell.

[laughs sheepishly]

[continues laughing]

[Herbert on radio] Then I-I levelled the pistol at them...


After a brief sort of struggle, they capitulated.

[interviewer] Unconditionally, eh?

Absolutely terrific, Mr Russell.

Now, tell me, what are you plans for the future?

[Herbert] Well, I understand I'm to be offered a branch managership immediately.

[interviewer] Absolutely terrific.

Now tell me one last question. Why do you carry a water pistol?

[Herbert] Oh... Oh, well...

[chuckles] Well-well, it was... It-it-it was a sort of a...

A sort of a surprise for somebody.

[interviewer] Absolutely terrific. [Herbert chuckles]


Your family's getting up to some funny pranks these days, eh?

I brought you the evening papers. Thank you.

Where's that daughter of mine? She should've been back hours ago.

She's here now.

She wanted you to meet her husband before they go away.

Huh? What did you say?

She's just married that young detective you hired to spy up on me.

She's married... detec...

This is your doing! No, it's yours.

You brought him into the house.

[exclaims, groans]

Oh, dear, you needn't put on a show for me, "cause I shan't send for the doctor, even if you do."

How dare you! Now, now, now.

As far as you're concerned, there's no need to worry because I promised your daughter to stay here with you for as long as it may be necessary.


Smile, Mr Webb.

Look. Over there.

Congratulations, my dear.

I hope he makes a better husband than he does a detective.

Oh, thank you, Daddy! I was so worried.

Oh, very foolish of you. You don't have to worry.

It's poor Bertha who must bear the brunt.

It won't be for long, Daddy, and then you'll come and live with us.

Live with a detective? I'd never feel safe.

We'll try to make you feel at home in spite of that, sir.

That's remarkably kind of you. Daddy, we must fly.

Our train leaves in half an hour.

I'll look after her, sir. You better.

Thank you, Agnes, for everything.

Good luck. Thanks.

[door closes] A touching little scene.

Thank you for taking it so well.

Ha! I'm never one to shut the door after the horse has bolted.

Though I'm sometimes liable to look a gift horse in the mouth.

That was a noble gesture of yours, offering to stay indefinitely with an unpleasant old man like me.

I made few such gestures in my life.

I was happy to do it. Aye.

But it was only necessary to stay a month, wasn't it?


Well, I don't think such unselfishness should go unrewarded.

I'm prepared to make a sacrifice, too, and do without you and your £1,000.

But... You're fired, Miss Russell.

Pack your bags and go now!

I might've expected that.

Aye, I think you might.

I don't know what you're losing, but it must be worth a lot.

It was.

But I think I've gained more in other ways.

Goodbye, Mr Webb.

And... congratulations.

Enjoy your weekend? You're for the high jump.

There's a new beak on the bench today.

He's up from the East End courts where they look down on the upper classes.

[clerk] Number one on your list, Deniston Russell.


[quips] Elizabeth.

[chuckles] Excuse me.

Hey, what are you doing? It's all right.

I think I've changed my mind.

I'm innocent. I know, I know.

[clerk] James Deniston Russell.

You are charged that on the 14th instant, at number 121 Mayfair Street, you caused wilful damage to a plate glass window valued at £15.

You are further charged that you did, at the same time, date and place, assault Charles Baker, a constable in the Metropolitan Police, by striking him with your umbrella.

Do you plead guilty or not guilty?

Hmm? Do you plead guilty or not guilty?

Well it's, uh... It's true that certain unfortunate circumstances did, well, force me into certain actions.

But I mean, if I'd dreamt that I'd be meeting you, Sir Charles, or dear Elizabeth here...

[clerk] We shall take that as a plea of not guilty.

I swear by almighty God that the evidence I shall give the court will be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

[clerk] Charles Baker, police constable 149...

[Sheila] Whatever it is, he didn't do it!

But I've got to tell him, I... All right.

You mustn't come in here.

You can't put me off like that. [shushes]

He's innocent. They all are, miss.

I want to give evidence.

Well, if you just wait a moment, I'll see what I can do.

The accused thereupon assaulted me in the course of my duty by striking me with his umbrella, Your Worship.

You heard the constable's evidence, Captain Russell.

Do you wish to ask him any questions on it?

Oh, no, no. No, thank you.

Have you anything you wish to say?

Uh, no, no. Not at present.

Although, I'll be most happy to explain it all to you personally in 28 days time.

Now is the time if you want to say anything at all.

Have you no witnesses you wish to call?

Uh, no. No, no.

Excuse me, sir. There's a lady outside who would like to give evidence on his behalf.

Call her, then! Call her. Yes, sir.

Captain Russell, you poor dear. What are they doing to you?

Don't you worry. I'll get you out of this.

No, no. No, no, no. Please, please. No, no.

Take the book in the right hand and read what it says on the card.

I swear by almighty God to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God.

Sheila Wilcott, 21 Juniper Drive, Eating. I'm the secretary to the captain here.

I don't know what you think he's done, but it's all a lie.



Hmm? It's a lie.

Captain Russell admits throwing a brick through a shop window, Miss Wilcott.

Oh. Oh, well then he's suffering from strain and overwork.

I always said he would.

It's medical attention he needs, not this.

Just a minute. I understood he retired from the army five years ago and has had no employment since.

Ah, that's because he's too retiring to talk about it.

Captain Russell is one of the most successful writers of the age.

Writers? What's he write?

Books. Hundreds of them.

I read a good deal. I've never heard of him.

Ah, no, you wouldn't. Not by Captain Russell.

But no doubt you'll have heard of Merton Somersby, Jeremy Sinclair and Gloria Trubshaw.


[Sir Charles] Gloria Trubshaw? Who's she?

What's she got to do with it?

[Sheila] Well, it's one of the captain's names, sir.

[Sir Charles] Alias, you say?

Here's Bloody Justice for you.

[laughter] What's that?

Bloody Justice.

Give it to me.

Thank you.

Bloody Justice by Gloria Trubshaw?

Do you admit to writing this, Miss Trubshaw?

[laughter] I mean, Captain Russell.

[exhales sharply]

Thank you, Miss Wilcott.

I admire your spirit in coming here, but the fact that Captain Russell has written these things does not alter the facts of the case.

Though my own private view is this type of literature encourages hooliganism and crime.

Well, you're wrong. Just because... I thank you, Miss Wilcott.

I'm much obliged.

But you don't understand. I'm much obliged.

Don't take any notice of them.

[Sir Charles] I find the case proved. Anything previous?

[clerk] No, sir. He had an excellent record in the army.

It's a tragedy to see a man in your position standing in this court.

Had you shown the slightest desire to defend yourself, I might have been able to take a different course.

However, I have no option but to send you to prison.

You may not realise it, but it's in my power to send you away for at least three months.

Oh, no.

However, I'm inclined to think that a total of 14 days in gaol will probably be enough.

Fourteen days?

Oh, but that's not enough.


Did you say something?


Yes, I... I said that you were a pompous ass.

[laughter] Very well.

Fourteen days on the first charge and seven on the second.

Twenty-one days in all, hmm?

That's still not enough. [laughter]

Pompous ass I said and pompous ass I meant.

You, you're not fit to conduct a bus, let alone a court of justice.

And a further seven days for contempt of court!

The sentences to run consecutively.

Twenty-eight days in all! Hmm!

Twenty-eight days.

[sighs] Thank you. Thank you, Sir Charles, very much.

I'm terribly sorry.

I suggest he's medically examined by the prison doctor.

[chuckles] No, no, no. No need for that, Sir Charles, I assure you.

Take him away! [Deniston] I'll explain...

Take him away! Take him away!

Elizabeth. Yes, Deniston?

I... I wanted to give you this.

Oh, Elizabeth.

I have permission to see you because there's something I want to say.

I... Wait. Please, listen, Elizabeth.

You have no idea what it cost me to be rude to your father.

Or, for that matter, what it would have cost me if I hadn't been.

But, look, I promise you that in one month you'll understand the awful predicament I was in.

I have no wish to hear your excuses now or at any other time.

Apart from behaving as a complete rotter to poor darling daddykins, I...

I couldn't possibly marry someone who's deceived me.

Deceived you?

Oh, but I haven't.

I mean about your profession.

I-I could... I could never marry a man who earns his living in such a low way.

If I found one of my girls reading such rubbish, I'd punish her.

It's-it's-it's trash!

All right.

Trash it is.

But at least it doesn't pretend to be important.

Perhaps I'd be happier with someone who thinks that what I do is good.

Even if it isn't.

You better marry your secretary then.

All right, Constable.

I've finished with him. Come take him away.

Yes, sir I-I mean, ma'am.

Come along, then.

Keep your chin up.

It won't be long. Of course it won't.

And then back to Blood Lust. Yes, Blood Lust!

We'll finish it together!

What are you looking so happy about? Oh, why not? [chuckles]

It's the happiest day of my life.

It's the happiest day of my life, Mrs Russell.

If I may say so, sir, it's an honour to be a witness on such a happy occasion.

Dear old Benson, I wouldn't have had any other witness.

You've no idea of the scrapes he's got me out of.

If it hadn't been for Benson, I wouldn't be with you now.

I can believe you, darling.

See you in a couple weeks, Benson. Thanks for everything.

Thank you for everything too. Thank you so much. Very kind of you.

I wish you every happiness, Mrs Russell.

Thank you. [Benson] Bon voyage!

Goodbye! Cheerio!

Goodbye Mrs Russell. [Simon] Goodbye.

[Lucille] Goodbye!

Have a jolly good time! I hope.

Don't think me fussy old girl, but I shouldn't make a habit of kissing Benson.

Why not, darling? He's my uncle.


Benson's your uncle?

Yes, my mother's brother. Didn't I tell you?

[stammers] But... you-you...

Cheating little fraud! Oh, we both are, darling.

We're going to get on fine.

Oh! You... I...

Oh. Oh, ma'am. Yes?

I'm going out now, Ethel.

Will you be back for dinner tonight, ma'am?

Yes. I'll be back.

I've nothing to celebrate.

Today I might've claimed a fortune. But I can't.

All right, Ethel.

What are you doing here?

I... I thought I'd just... pop round and see you.


I wondered if maybe you'd be so kind as to come have a meal with me.

Why? Call it a Celtic conscience.

A notion you sacrificed a lot to put my girl on her feet.

Yes. A fortune.

So if you have any ideas about claiming that £1,000...

Oh, good gracious, no. I've plenty of money.

Nobody to spend it on but myself.

It's a gloomy discovery to make that there's not a soul in the world that wants to dine with you.

Won't you help me out?


Is there any reason why I should?

None whatsoever.

Ethel. [Ethel] Yes, ma'am?

I shan't be in to dinner tonight.

Thank you.

The deceased left a sealed letter with instructions that it should not be opened or read until you had all completed your tasks.

I will now proceed to read it.

"I trust that you've all gained something from the tasks I set you apart from the material consideration involved.

I have always been a practical joker, "but practically all my jokes have had some practical intent."

Dear me, what a complicated sentence.

As the one who has failed, I would like to say at once how deeply grateful I am to my brother for bringing me a measure of happiness I never dreamt of finding in this world.

Well, now, Cousin Agnes, I'd like to second that.

It's true, I win my fortune, but I also benefited enormously, in... in other ways.

Here, here. I feel a new man too.

Well, jolly good luck to you all.

But I don't mind saying that the cash is my one consolation.

And knowing my dear wife, well, that's not going to last very long.

If I might be able to continue, please.

"I sincerely hope that you've all gained a little something, for now comes the biggest joke of all.

I died flat"... [laughs]

[laughing] "Flat"...

[all chuckling]

Not broke!

Broke! That's it!

"Flat broke."

There isn't a penny for any of you.


[chuckles, laughs]

[all laughing]

[horn honks]


[all continue laughing]