On Golden Pond (1981) Script

Norman, come here. Come here.

Norman.

Hurry up.

The loons. The loons.

They're welcoming us back.

I don't hear a thing.


Just look at this place.

It's a mess, isn't it? Just take a second.

It'll be all shipshape again and warmer.


Phone works!

At least I think it does.

Hello.

Hello!

Who the hell is that?

Who the hell's in this picture here?

Who the hell is that?

Hello. Who's this?

The operator?

What do you want?

You called. You must want something.

Oh, wait a minute.

I did call you, but you never answered.

Well, how are you?

How nice.

Listen, this is Norman Thayer, Jr. over on Golden Pond.

I have something I want you to do.

Call me up. Can you do that?

I want to check my phone, see if it still rings.

Hasn't rung all winter. May have lost its whatsie.

You have my number?

I have no idea.

It's got a nine, that's all I know.

It's in the book! You must have a book.

Norman Thayer, Jr.

Let's give her a try, shall we?

Who the hell is that?

Someone's at the door.

It's me, you old poop!

Well, look at you.

Look at me?

Quite a sight, aren't I?

Oh, Norman, it's so beautiful.

Everything's just waking up.

Little tiny birds, little tiny leaves.

I saw a patch of little tiny flowers over by the old cellar hall.

I forget what they're called.

Little, tiny yellow things.

Well... want to help me with the dust covers?

I don't have anything else to do.

Come on.

What were you doing out in the woods?

Norman, what do you think I was doing?

I was getting wood.

Hey, I met the nicest couple.

Huh? Where? In the woods.

Couple of people?

No, a couple of antelope.

Of course, a couple of people.

The name is Migliori, I believe.

Migliori? What sort of name is that?

I don't know, darling. Italian, I suppose.

They're up from Boston. They speak English?

Well, of course they speak English.

They're a nice, middle-aged couple, just like us.

If they're just like us, they're not middle-aged.

Of course they are.

Middle-aged means the middle, Ethel.

Middle of life. People don't live to be 150!

Well, we're at the far edge of middle age, that's all.

We're not, you know.

We're not middle-aged. You're old and I'm ancient.

Oh, pooh!

You're in your 70s and I'm in my 60s.

Just barely, on both counts.

Would you like to spend the rest of the afternoon quibbling about this?

We can if you like.

For the Lord's sake.

The Miglioris, whatever their age group, have invited us to have dinner sometime.

Wouldn't that be nice?

No, I'm not sure my stomach's ready for rigatoni.

That sort of thing. Oh, no!

Poor Elmer!

He's had a terrible fall.

Poor little Elmer, the life you've led.

He was my first true love, you know.

Known all along I wasn't the first in line.

No, you were a rather cheap substitute for Elmer.

And now he's had a fall.

Maybe he wanted to kill himself. Maybe he wanted to be cremated.

Probably got cancer or termites or something.

Shut up, Norman. Not a bad way to go, huh?

A quick frontflip off the mantel, a bit of a kick at the last minute, end up right in the fire... nothing to it.

Norman, will you shut up?

When my number's up, do that for me, will ya?

Prop me up on the mantel and point out which way is down.

Might even try for a full gainer with a half twist.

Norman Thayer Jr., your fascination with dying is beginning to frazzle my good humor.

Not fascination.

Just crosses my mind now and then. Every five minutes.

Don't you have anything else to think about?

Nothing quite as interesting.

Well, what's stopping you?

Why don't you take your dive and get it over with?

And leave you alone with Elmer?

You must be mad! Oh, for pity's sake.

Come on, help me get the canoe off the porch.

Norman, are you paddling?

Of course I'm paddling.

Then you're not steering.

You want me to take the stern?

I most certainly do not.

Norman!

Good God, what is it? Look, look!

Oh, look, I've spotted the loons.

Oh, they're so lovely!

Here, here.

Look.

Can you see them? No.

Oh, my goodness! There they are.

Oh, they're so beautiful.

Yeah, they're huge.

I never saw such big loons in my life.

Those are boats, you poop.

Come in closer.

A husband and wife.

I think they're looking at us.

Yeah, they are.

What the hell's the matter with them?

Hey, buzz off!

Buzz off!

Ethel, what are you doing? What do you mean what am I doing?

Don't do that. Why not? You did it.

Never mind, I'll explain later.

5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11.

How about that? Right on your man.

Where were you?

Where was I?

Oh, come off it. Don't give me that.

5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10... damn!

11, yes. Damn it.

Good night, sweet prince.

5, 10, 15, and 20.

Well, mother!

You want to stay here and watch the boat while I run into the store?

I think I'm qualified to watch the boat.

Come with me if you want to.

No, thank you very much. Okay.

Hello, Sumner. Good morning, Mrs. Thayer.

Will you fill her up, please? Sure.

Norman will help you.

That'll be $38, please, Mr. Thayer.

God... you know how much gasoline cost when I was your age?

12 cents a gallon.

Is that a fact?

I didn't even know they had gas back then.

What are you, a couple of nitwits?

Think it's funny being old?

My whole goddamn body's falling apart.

Sometimes I can't even go to the bathroom when I want to.

But I'm still a man, let me tell you. And I can take on both you punks!

Norman! Here we go.

Thanks, boys.

I'll drive home.

Are you sure? Yeah.

If I make the wrong turn and wind up in Michigan or someplace, be sure you let me know.

Someone's at the door.

It's me, you old poop!

Where you been? Picking strawberries.

There were oodles and oodles of little strawberries along the old town road. How nice.

What on earth you're doing in here on a morning like this, Norman, is beyond me.

I've been quite busy looking through yesterday's paper for gainful employment.

Here we go again. Very good prospects, I think.

Chauffeurs, yard work.

Dairy Divine wants a... ice cream dipper.

I think I can do something like that.

Don't you? What do you think?

What are you gonna do if you call and they say, "Come on over and start tomorrow"?

I'll go on over and start tomorrow.

Oh, for the love of God, Norman, what on earth's the matter with you?

Look, give me that stuff.

Why don't you take these buckets and go pick us another quart of strawberries?

And I'll fix us up a scrumptious strawberry shortcake for lunch.

Go on.

You want me to pick strawberries?

Yep. Do I have to put an ad in the paper?

I'm not sure I know how to pick strawberries.

It's really very simple, Norman. Bend over and pick them.

Bend over?

Where are they?

On the ground where they belong.

Last time we picked blueberries on a bush.

You didn't have to bend over at all.

These are strawberries and they grow on the ground.

Here comes whatshisname.

He'll have the paper, you know.

I don't want to miss any career opportunities off looking for strawberries.

I'll pay you, Norman.

May be the beginning of something big.

You may become a major strawberry picker.

Not if I'm bending over all the time. I think you're trying to kill me.

I thought about it. Well, you needn't bother.

I'm living on borrowed time as it is.

Will you take your cheery personality and get out of here?

I hope you're prepared to massage my bent back this evening.

With pleasure.

Maybe I can lie down to pick the berries.

Morning, Ethel.

Hi, Charlie!

Come on up and have some coffee.

You can take five minutes.

You got a letter from Chelsea.

The rest is just bills and junk like that.

Sure. Go on in.

I think I broke your door.

No, no, it's been that way for months now.

Norman's supposed to fix it, but I'm afraid it's not high on his list of priorities.


Oh, Charl...

Hi, Norman.

Norman, are you back already?

You barely left.

So? I moved fast.

Ran all the way and picked without stopping on the way back.

Let me see what you've got.

I'll just dump 'em in with yours. No.

Not a single berry.

What's the matter with you?

I must have eaten them all.

No mail today, Charlie?

Holy mackinoly, I left it on the porch.

How 'bout bringing it in? Can you do that?

Oh, you bet.

Glass of milk, Norman? No.

I see you broke the screen door, Charlie.

Well, it's just missing its little thingamabobbers for the hinges.

I could bring you a couple from town tomorrow.

Just be careful next time.

Here it is, Norman. Drink it.

Thank you, nurse.

Finish your coffee over here.

There you go.

What you got there, Norman?

I have no idea. I can't open it.

Here, bite this, please.

Oh, just his medicine.

Oh, goody. What a swell surprise.

Nothing serious. Just for his palpitations.

That's right, Charlie, I have occasional heartthrobs.

Norman, we got a letter from Chelsea.

Look at the goddamn Orioles!

Baltimore's always been a sneaky town.

Norman.

She's coming for your birthday.

How nice.

Yep, and she's bringing a friend.

She has the nicest boyfriend. Oh?

They're coming together and then they're going on to Europe for a while.

Oh, really?

I don't want crowds of people coming on my birthday.

I don't want crowds of people watching me turn older.

Wait a minute, wait a minute.

It's not that Freddie person.

This is a different boyfriend altogether.

What the hell's going on?

Detroit's disappeared!

Good God!

What is it, Norman?

Detroit's gone.

What happened to her husband?

What is it, Charlie?

I was wondering what happened to Chelsea's husband.

It didn't work out.

Hey... she... she says... she says she's in love with a dentist.

Does her boyfriend know about this?

This is her new boyfriend.

Her new boyfriend is a dentist.

That's who she's bringing here?

A dentist? Yeah.

Good God!

He'll be staring at our teeth all the time.

Well, shall we ask him not to come?

No, I think we should have representatives from all walks of life at my last birthday party.

Oh, lorks!

I think this medicine should be put away from all this hot air.

Why didn't you marry Chelsea?

You wouldn't let me. Oh?

You could've married somebody else. I'd have allowed that.

I didn't want anyone else. Oh?

How old will you be?

When? On your birthday.

103.

Miss Appley was 97 in May.

Isn't that amazing? Yeah.

She died, you know. No.

Yeah, last Tuesday.

We got a call, in case any mail comes up.

Gave you a forwarding address for Miss Appley?

What's so funny?

One of the lesbians expired.

Oh, no. Which one, Charlie?

Miss Appley.

Well, she had a good, full life.

Charlie said she was 97.

97!

Isn't that wonderful?

Puts us all to shame, doesn't it?

There's something to be said for a deviant lifestyle.

Well, thanks for the coffee, Ethel.

You still make the best biscuits on the lake.

Thank you, Charlie.

You must come around when Chelsea comes.

Hey, I haven't seen her in a long time.

No.

Well...

Norman.

Charlie's leaving.

Good! Bye.

Good-bye.

Watch out for that screen door.

Norman!

The loons are teaching their baby to fly.

Isn't that exciting? Listen to this.

"Retired people sought for handbill delivery.

Some walking involved."

I should call. I can walk.

Is that why you came rushing back here, to read those goddamned ads?

You wanna know why I came back so fast?

I got to the end of our lane, I couldn't remember where the old town road was.

I wandered away in the woods.

There was nothing familiar, not one damn tree.

Scared me half to death.

That's why I came... running back here to you... to see your pretty face.

I could feel safe. I was still me.

You're safe, you old poop.

And you're definitely still you.

Picking on poor old Charlie.

After lunch... after we've gobbled up all those silly strawberries, we'll take ourselves to the old town road.

We've been there a thousand times, darling.

A thousand, and you'll remember it all.

Listen to me, mister.

You're my knight in shining armor.

Don't you forget it.

You're gonna get back on that little horse, and I'm gonna be right behind you, holding on tight.

And away we're gonna go, go, go.

I don't like horses.

You are a pretty old dame, aren't you?

What are you doing with a dotty old son of a bitch like me?

Well...

I haven't the vaguest idea.


I don't think you should do that in front of Chelsea's companion.

Oh, pooh!

I was just talking to my friends.

Hey, look at you!

My, oh, my. You have on a tie.

Yes, I know. I put it there.

Do I look all right?

I haven't overdressed, have I?

You look sexy.

I'm gonna have to do some pretty fast maneuvers to catch up with you!

I have some other ties.

You could come as Miss Appley.

Thank you.


"Welcome home, Chelsea"?

I see my birthday party wasn't cause enough for celebration.

I just wanted our little girl to feel welcome, that's all.

Norman.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could all get along this time?

Where the hell are they?

I'm getting older by the minute.

They said they'd be here when they get here.

Is that what they said? Yep.

That's a hell of an attitude.

No wonder we don't have any grandchildren.

What would we do with grandchildren?

Toss them on our knee.

We're the last of the Thayers, you know.

End of the line for a damn good name.

Yep, and we're gonna take it out in style.

Oh, my God! They're here.

I'm not even dressed.

I look like an old character.

You are an old character.

Go on upstairs and change if it'll make you feel any better.

Be nice to them. Sure.

I'll explain the risks involved in being late to an old man's birthday party.

Anybody home?

Too late.

Look, move that flower vase over to the other side of the table.

Why? Just do it, Norman!

For once, just do it!

Hey! Oh, Mommy!

Oh, darling! What a treat.

Let me look at you. Oh, you look great.

Where is he? Just inside the door. Go ahead.

He's waiting for you.

Hello, Norman.

Well, look at you. Happy birthday!

Look at this little fat girl, Ethel.

Oh, Norman.

You're as thin as a rail.

Isn't she? Sure.

Oh, my darling, I'm so glad you're home.

Here, give me all those. I didn't think we were gonna make it.

We rented a car that explodes every 40 miles.

Rented a car? In Boston.

What sort of car is it?

I don't know. Green, I think.

Ooh, a green car.

I meant what sort of make is it?

I don't know.

She doesn't know, Norman. It doesn't matter.

Of course it doesn't matter. I was just curious.

Well, I guess I should have looked.

Let's see... it's very ugly and it breaks down a lot.

Ugly and breaks down?

Sounds like a Nash.

Yes, well...

Where... where's your friend?

You did bring your friend, didn't you?

I knew there was something I was forgetting.

That's still on, huh?

Well, as far as I know.

Come on in.

No one's gonna bite you. Come on.

Mommy, Norman, this is Billy Ray.

How you doing?

You seem awfully young to be a dentist.

This is Billy Ray, Jr.

I'm Norman Thayer, Jr. Worse.

His father is trying to park the car.

Well, this is a great surprise.

You can call me Ethel, Billy.

And you can call Norman Norman.

I like your logic, Mommy.

I'm gonna go see if Bill has driven into the lake.

Put away some of these things.

I hear you turned 80 today.

That what you heard?

Yeah.

Man, that's really old.

You should meet my father.

Your father's still alive?

No, but you should meet him.

Isn't this fun?

Norman, why don't we put Billy in Chelsea's old room?

Then he can look out at the lake in the morning.

Why don't we put him out on the float?

He can look at the lake all night long.

I'd like that.

I'm afraid you'd be eaten alive by all the bugs.

So? Norman, take him up.

Show him where everything is.

Come on, boy.

I just had a birthday too. I turned 13 two weeks ago.

Oh? We're practically twins.

I'm so glad you're here. He'll be right in.

He actually thinks you have to lock your car.

Mommy...

Norman looks so old.

Oh, I don't know.

You look great, though.

Thank you. So do you.

I love your hair.

Thanks. How's his mind?

Is he remembering things better?

Is he... He's all right.

He's all right.

Come on, Billy.

I'll show you the bathroom, if I can remember where it is.

Well, at least he hasn't changed.

Nope, he's still impossible.

It means so much to him to have you here.

Sure, now he's got someone he can pick on.

Oh, come on. Thank you for coming.

Thank you for inviting me.

Chels.

Well, you finally made it.

This is my mother.

Hi. Mommy, this is Bill Ray.

I think I saw a bear. Oh, no.

You couldn't have seen a bear out there at this time of year.

There are some rather nasty moths flying around, though.

No, no, this was a little big for a moth.

If you really wanna be scared, wait till you meet my father.

Hey, Dad! Hey, Billy!

Dad, they do have indoor plumbing here.

Oh, great!

Chelsea was just bullshitting us.

I like to paint a rather rustic picture of life on Golden Pond.

It's rustic, all right!

It's lovely, though. It's lovely rusticity.

We've been peeing indoors for 40 years.

Well, you must be Norman.

Must be. Who are you?

Bill Ray. Bill Ray.

The dentist? Yes, sir.

Want to see my teeth?

I'd just like to tell you, sir, how glad we are to be here.

Chelsea has told me so much about you and your lovely wife, your wonderful place here on the lake.

We're very pleased she's brought us here.

I'm frankly surprised Chelsea could find the way.

Well, she's here, Norman, and that's what's important.

Do you visit your parents, young man?

No, sir. My parents both passed away.

I see. Then you have a good excuse, don't you?

Norman, please.

Norman, why...

What? Am I not allowed to speak to our guests?

Is that it?

They're afraid I'm gonna embarrass them.

Well, I'm going to go say hello to the lake.

Anybody coming? Me.

I've never seen anyone say hello to a lake before.

Mommy, are you coming?

Yeah. Want to take the boat?

A boat? All right!

Bill, aren't you coming?

Where, outside?

Well, that's where the lake is.

Coming, Norman?

No, I think I'll just sit here and enjoy the quiet.

I'll stay, too.

With Bill.

The screen door is broken.

Really? Norman will fix it.

I love your house.

Thank you. It's not for sale.

I don't want to buy it, I just like it.

It has a... charming ambiance.

Well, how does it feel to turn 80?

Twice as bad as it did turning 40.

I know what that's like.

I turned 405 years ago.

I'm 45 now.

Norman...

Do you mind if I call you Norman?

I believe you just did.

I don't want to press.

What should I call your wife?

How about Ethel?

That's her name. Ethel Thayer.

Thounds like I'm lithping, doesn't it?

Ethel Thayer.

Almost kept her from marrying me. Yeah?

Wanted me to change my last name to hers.

And what was that? I don't remember.

Well...

I think I'll... start a new book.

See if I can finish it before I'm finished myself.

Maybe a novelette.

Maybe something from Reader's Digest abridged.

Treasure island.

Ever read this book?

Oh, yeah. That's a great book.

I'd highly recommend that one.

No need for that. I've read it myself.

But my mind is going, so... it'll all be new to me.

That son of yours ever read this book?

I don't think so.

Your son hasn't read Treasure island?

No, but I intend to have him read it.

His mother's been the real force in his life lately, but I intend to eradicate... some of the... dishevelment.

Actually... actually, things are... coming together very nicely for me lately.

I'm beginning to feel very good about myself.

Meeting... meeting Chelsea was a major...

thing.

We have a... we have a very kinetic relationship.

It's very positive.

I'm sure you'd be pleased.

What do you charge for a filling?

You're a dentist, aren't you?

What do you charge for a filling?

Oh, it's generally $40.

$40! Good God!

Norman... we'd like to sleep together, if it's all right with you.

What do you mean?

We'd... we'd like to sleep together in the same room... the same bed... if it's not offensive to you.

All three of you?

No, just two.

You and Billy?

No.

Not Chelsea and Billy.

No.

That leaves Chelsea and you, then.

That's right.

Why would I find that offensive?

You're not planning on doing something unusual, are you?

No, no, no. Just... you know, just... that doesn't seem too offensive, as long as you're quiet.

Thank you.

Chelsea always slept in the same bed with her husband.

Yeah, I'm sure. Ethel and I do, you know?

We sleep together. Been doing it for years.

I guess I'd be delighted to have you abuse my daughter under my own roof.

Would you like the room where I first violated her mother?

Or would you be interested in the master bedroom?

Ethel, your boy and I could sleep out back.

You could do it right here in the hearth.

Like that idea?

You're having a good time, aren't you?

Chelsea told me all about how you like to have a good ol' time with people's heads.

She does, too, sometimes.

Sometimes I can get into it, and sometimes not.

I think you should know I'm pretty good at recognizing crap when I hear it.

You know, it's not imperative that you and I become friends.

I thought it would be nice.

I'm sure you're a very fascinating person.

And I thought it would be fascinating getting to know you, but it's obviously not an easy task.

No.

Just go ahead and be... as "poopy" as you want, to quote Chelsea.

And I'll be as receptive and as pleasant as I can be.

But I want you to bear one thing in mind while you're jerking me around, making me feel like an asshole.

I know precisely what you're up to.

And I'll take just so much of it, okay?

Now, what is the bottom line on this illicit sex question?

Very good.

That was a good speech.

Bottom line? You're a bottom-line man.

All right, here's the bottom line.

Okay.

You seem like a nice man.

A bit verbose, but nice. Thank you.

And you're right about me.

I am fascinating. I'm sure you are.

Let's get back to talking about sex.

Anything you want to know, just ask me.

No, I just...

I just wanted to clear up that little question.

Chelsea and I can sleep together, right?

Sure, please do.

Just don't let Ethel catch you.

Dad, Dad, I paddled the canoe!

A canoe! It's a boat! Just like Indians had.

Actually, the Indians used a different grade of aluminum.

Listen, Chelsea wants you to come down to the lake.

She and Ethel are going skinny-dipping!

Skinny-dipping?

Go ahead, permissiveness runs rampant here on Golden Pond.

Let's go.

Are there any bears around here?

Oh, sure. Black bears and grizzlies.

One came along here last month and ate an old lesbian.

Dad, come on.

He's just bullshitting you.

Come on.

Yeah.

Hey, hey, where do you think you're going?

Skinny-dipping with Chelsea. No, no, no.

You're going back inside and talk to Mr. Thayer.

Bullshit!

Dad, I'm not going in there with that old turkey man.

He gives me the creeps.

What if he dies?

Now listen to me.

If you don't start behaving yourself, I'm gonna send you right back to your mother.

Do you understand that? Is that what you want?

Now go back in there and talk to him.

Maybe you'll learn something.

Go on, go on.

Remember when I was nine years old and I came down and caught you and Norman skinny-dipping?

No, I don't remember that.

Don't you remember I had that big light?

I shined it on Norman on the diving board and he was all naked!

And he screamed at me, he called me a spy and sent me to my room for the rest of the year.

Oh, it took me so long to get over that.

It took Norman a long time before he'd go skinny-dipping again.

He wouldn't even get out of the water until I went up and made sure that you were asleep.

I was so bloody mad at him for yelling at you that I let him float around down here for an hour or so, freezing to death.

Good!

You going skinny-dipping?

Are you going skinny-dipping?

Nah. You?

Nah, I try to be selective about who I flash in front of, you know?

Chelsea says you're a real heavy-duty fisherman.

She calls you the old man of the sea.

I've caught a few.

You fish?

Nah.

What do you do out there in California?

I mean... what does one do for recreation when one is 13 and not in school?

We... cruise chicks.

Cruise chicks. You know, meet 'em... girls.

Try to pick them up.

What do you do with them when you have them?

Suck face.

I beg your pardon?

You know, kiss.

Suck face, you kiss.

Ever read this book, Treasure island?

No.

Go read it. Now?

Come on, take it upstairs! Read the first chapter.

Give me a report in the morning.

I thought you said we were gonna have a party here, though.

I'll call you when the party's under way, if it ever is.

Go on!

Oh, I'm sorry.

Chelsea's still in the water.

You should go on down.

No one should skinny-dip alone.

Yes?

What... what is that over there?

Well, that's a lawn chair.

Go on. Right down the path.

Right. See you later.

I thought you'd be nude.

No, sorry.

I didn't want to overwhelm our guest on his first night.

He's nice, isn't he?

$40 a filling. $40!

That's enough to keep you off sweets.

He'd be a good catch, wouldn't he?

He said they wanted to sleep together.

Well, why not? They're big people.

Yeah.

You and I did, didn't we?

Did we?

Oh, Norman... have you been picking on him?

Yeah. He finds me fascinating.

Well, why not?

Norman...

Norman.

Chelsea... wants us to do something for her.

She wants to leave Billy here with us for a month.

Which Billy? Oh, Billy, Norman!

The little one.

Bill is supposed to have him for the summer, and the kid would be miserable in Europe.

Bill seems very nice, and Chels needs someone nice.

Couldn't we do that for her?

What would we do with the boy?

What would I say to him?

You'd think of something.

Let's do it.

Let's say we'll do it and give Chelsea some happiness, yes?

All right.

We'll have a splendid time, the three of us, won't we?

I don't know. We might.

You know, Norman... you really are the sweetest man in the world, but I'm the only one who knows it.

♪ Happy birthday to you ♪

♪ Happy birthday ♪

♪ Dear Norman ♪

♪ Happy birthday ♪

♪ To you ♪

♪ And many more. ♪ Beautiful.

I suppose you expect me to sing something now.

I'm not about to.

I've been trying all day to draw some... profound conclusion about living fourscore years.

Haven't thought of anything.

I'm surprised it got here so fast.

But I'm glad I got to spend so much time with this beautiful woman.

What's your name again?

I want to thank all of you for coming all the way here from Disneyland to witness this historic event.

Now that I'm out of hot air, I'm gonna need a little assistance to get these candles out.

Come on, everybody.


Come on!

Chicken.

Charlie!

Well, holy mackinoly!

Chelsea mackinelsie.

Charlie mackinolly.

Boy, it's good to see you.

Well, you've held up good!

Thanks, so have you.

Bill, this is my old friend Charlie.

He's the mailman.

Hi, how are you?

Hello.

Want a ride?

I'd love one.

Great.

You actually deliver the mail in a boat?

What an incredible tradition.

Charlie's a legend on this lake.

He gets the mail through, no matter what.

Isn't that right, Charlie? Yeah, guess so.

Must be a bitch in the winter?

Yeah, in the winter I have a hell of a time.

Of course, there's nobody on the lake to deliver to, so I get done a lot faster.

You've got great setup, here.

You're a lucky man.

You're a lucky man, too.

Yeah, I guess I am.

What... what would you usually do at a time like this?

Well, generally I just fall into the lake.

Just...

All right, come on, Dad.

Big rolls here. You can beat him.

All right. Big rolls.

All right! Two threes. What does that mean?

It means doubles, which always means you get 14, you see?

You send me home, you get 20 more, for God's sake.

All right, Dadder!

Good, huh? Excellent!

You're a natural.

Starting to regret teaching you this game.

Chels. Hey, Chels, Parcheesi pro.

Chelsea doesn't like playing games.

We don't know why. Probably doesn't like losing.

I tend to panic when the competition gets too intense.

What's that supposed mean?

Nothing.

We play serious Parcheesi around here.

I let Norman win every week or so, just to keep his spirits up.

What I'd like to know is why you enjoy playing games.

You seem to like beating people.

I wonder why?

You get another chance, Bill. Another roll of the dice.


Well, here's my little early bird.

Are you having fun?

That's why you come to camp, you know.

To have fun.

What's the matter, darling?

Nothing.

I don't think I've ever grown up on Golden Pond.

Do you understand?

No. No, I don't think I understand.

It doesn't matter.

I act like a big person everywhere else.

I'm in charge of Los Angeles and I come here, I feel like a little fat girl.

That's just because your father said that.

My father is a goddamn bastard.

Come on, Chels.

Watch your language. Poop.

Why, you going to wash my mouth out with soap?

That was rather a bizarre custom.

Mother, do you know...

I've been answering to Norman all my life.

Makes me so mad.

Even when I'm 3,000 miles away and I don't even see him, I'm still answering to him.

Norman is a goddamn poop.

Oh, for the Lord's sake, here we go again.

You had a miserable childhood.

Your father was overbearing, your mother ignored you.

What else is new?

Chelsea...

you have a great big chip on your shoulder, which is very unattractive.

It is. It is.

You stay away for years at a time.

You never come home unless I beg you to.

And then when you do, all you can do is be disagreeable about the past.

What's the point?

Don't you think that... everyone looks back on their childhood with a certain amount of bitterness and regret about something?

It doesn't have to ruin your life, darling.

You're a big girl now.

Aren't you tired of it all?

Bore, bore, bore.

Life marches by, Chels.

I suggest you get on with it.


Have a wonderful trip, darling. And don't worry.

Billy will take good care of us.

Okay.

Don't go getting involved with any foreigners.

Right.

Let me have your bag, Chels.

Good-bye, kid.

Okay.

You going to be okay now?

Oh, sure.

Behave yourself. Yeah. Hey, listen.

You guys behave yourself too, now.

We will, okay. Norman, bye.

You work on that Parcheesi game.

Good luck, everybody.

Ethel, thank you so much. We had a great time.

Thank you. I'm so happy you came.

Bye-bye. Bye-bye.

Just want you guys to know that I'm not about to take any crap from you.

Well, gentlemen, it's a beautiful day.

We're going fishing.

What? We're going what?

Fishing. You remember fishing, Norman.

You're going to show Billy what life is all about on Golden Pond.

Come on, Billy.

Bullshit.

I beg your pardon?

Does that mean you can't wait to get out there or that it's not your cup of tea?

It's bullshit. That's all.

I see. Well, come on, Norman.

Let's get ready.

You like that word, don't you?

Bullshit.

Yeah.

It's a good word.

Okay, Grandpa, do your stuff.

Hey, hey!

Pretty slick, huh?

Look at this.

This was Chelsea's when she was about your age.

She caught some respectable fish wearing this.

I'm surprised you still kept it if it's Chelsea's.

I might not stick around here.

I might just haul my ass out to Wyoming or Puerto Rico.

One of those places.

Listen, I know I'm just being dumped here.

Which is like my middle name.

You turkeys don't want me.

Bullshit.

I'm 67 years older than you.

How do you know what I want?

We're going fishing now.

We want you to go along.

If you want to come with us, I suggest you get your ass down to the dock in two minutes.

Okay, Miss Turkey, let's go.

Here he is.

I...

I thought I might just sorta come along and see what this bullshit is all about.

Get in.

You look very handsome in that fishing vest.

Oh, thank you!

I mean... thank you.

So, how fast does this old tub go anyway?

All right!


Go up this time.

Not just back. Up and back, come on.

Come on, nothing to be afraid of.

Backflip's one of the easiest dives.

Oh, yeah? Then why don't you come and try it?

Norman, you stay right where you are.

Dive, boy.

All right.

One... two... three!

Ouch!

Good God!

That wasn't it.

Thanks for telling me.

Norman, we've got him for a whole month.

Don't kill him the first week.


This is it?

This is it.

Give me your hook.

You got to be patient when you're fishing for trout, boy.

There's a trout living in this cove that weighs 10 pounds if he weighs an ounce.

First saw him three or four years ago.

Hooked him two years ago and again last year.

But he's a crafty old son of a bitch!

It's your last chance, Walter!

Called him Walter 'cause he reminds me of Ethel's brother.

He's fat, lazy, and ugly!

Okay. Throw her out.

Let her out. Thread your line.

How is your line?

On the bottom?

If your line's floating, it's on the bottom!

That doesn't do you any good. Bring it up!

Bring it up, for Christ's sake!

All right!

Hey, man, you don't have to yell at me.

Who do you think you are, anyway?

Long John Silver?

God.

I'm sorry.

That's okay.

Having fun?

Yeah.

That's good.

Better than cruising chicks, isn't it?

No.

I suppose not.

For God's sake!

What the hell are you doing out here?

Brought you lunch!

How the hell did you find us?

You'll scare the fish.

Ethel, this is supposed to be a secret fishing place.

Lucky guess.

We don't need any lunch!

We got more important things going on here.

Don't be an old poop.

Billy might get hungry.

Bye-bye.


We ought to see what she brought us.

Hold on, you son of bitch!

What? What?

Run with it!

It's not Walter, but he's related.

You ugly old son of a bitch!

San Frantastic! I love you, I love you!

Get the net, boy.

We're going to have trout for dinner tonight!

Not the little one, the big one! It's in back of me.

It ain't no stupid sunfish!

Here you go, baby.

Wait a minute, wait a minute.

Oh, lovely!

Get the net down underneath him.

Lovely. Bring it up.

Oh, wow!

Look at that beauty.

Yes, siree.

This... is a trout.

A rainbow trout.

Get going, boy!

Norman, we've caught eight million fish.

Are you sure none of these is Walter?

Yep, Walter is humongous.

Those fish you got there are little mothers.

They're disgusting little mothers.

You got something against fish guts, boy?

Yeech!

Hey Norman, can I ask you something?

How did you get Ethel anyway?

What?

I sent away for her.

Two box tops from Quaker Oats.

Come on, don't bullshit me, man.

I met Ethel when I was a principal and she was a substitute teacher.

She was the prettiest thing I'd ever seen.

So I told her she made my heart go pitter-pat.

She fell in love with me immediately.

Is that the way Norman got you, Ethel?

Don't be silly, he didn't get me at all.

I won him in a contest. He was the booby prize.

Has he got you you cleaning those stupid fish?

That's right, he cleans the stupid ones, I clean the smart ones.

Fortunately, the smart ones are too smart to get caught.

That's why they're in schools.

Come on in, Norman. Get me a fire going.

It's going to be a bit nippy tonight.

You hear that, boy? Get a fire going.

Norman, for Pete's sake!

Billy doesn't have to do all your chores.

What's the point in having a dwarf if he doesn't do chores?

Damn!

You got the match backwards. Want me to do it?

I think I know how to light a fire, for Christ's sake.


What are you reading?

A Tale of Two Cities.

Ah, très bien, très bien!

Norman! Norman!

You've set the house on fire!

What the hell's going on? Get a bucket!

What? Get a bucket!

Good for you, Billy. Good for you.

Let's have the screen.

The screen.

It's warm. Yep. Right there.

That's all right.

For God's sake! You made a hell of a mess!

What?

Norman, he just... don't yell at me, man.

I guess it's... not safe to have me around here, is it?

What are you staring at me for, you little son of a bitch?


You mustn't let Norman upset you, Billy.

Sure.

He wasn't yelling at you, you know.

Sounds like he is yelling at me.

No, he was yelling at life.

What the heck does that mean?

It means he's like an old lion.

He has to remind himself that he can still roar.

Billy... sometimes... you have to look hard at a person and remember... that he's doing the best he can.

He's just trying to find his way, that's all.

Just like you.


How's my little petunia?

Hey, Norman!

Norman!

Hey, Norm!

Yeah, listen, I was wondering, can I take the Thayer IV for a little spin?

Absolutely not!

Aw, come on. I know how to drive.

I think it would be all right. Don't you, Norman?

Good God!

Can you be careful?

Oh, sure.

Norman, what the hell are you doing?

Ruff! Come on.

It's really happened, hasn't it?

You have lost your marbles.


Here. I'll get the big net.

You two will be sorry.

The loons have been calling for rain all night long.

"Rain! Rain!

Bring us some rain!"

That's what the loons said, huh?

Allons, debut.

Je viens.

That's French, you know. It means, "I'm coming."

I'll get la port.

Oh, no, no, no!

I'm sorry.

Ethel, allow me.

I don't believe it!

Yeah.

Norman and I fixed the mother.

Oh, great!


That's the only place that we haven't looked for this stupid son-of-a-bitch fish.

Might as well give it a try, huh?

They call this Purgatory Cove, boy.

See those rocks?

They eat boats.

Do you know the way?

Of course I know the way.

Get up on the deck.

Tell me where the rocks are.

Come on, up there.

All right?

Okay. Here we go.

Hey, there's one coming up.

Which side? On the left.

Port, boy. Okay, port.

All right.

Another one on port.

Oh, there's one coming up right here.

Oh, shit. The starboard.

Okay, there's one port side.

All right, starboard, over there.


Now... doesn't this look like the ideal hiding place for a crafty old son of a bitch?

Well, the fish aren't just gonna jump in the boat, you know.

Get it in gear, turkey!


Getting dark, Chelsea.

Who are you calling Chelsea?

I'm Billy, remember?

Come on, man.

Hey, are you okay?

'Course I'm okay!

Okay.

We better hurry and catch Walter, huh?

I mean, I'm not gonna be here much longer.

Neither am I.

I'll miss you, Norman.

What?

Norman! Hey, Norman, look! Shit!

I got the mother!

I got him!

Well, get the net, Norman!

Get it in gear, turkey!

I got him!

What the heck is that?

My God!

It's a dead loon, Norman.

The poor thing.

Oh, it smells, too.

Here. Hold on.

Let it go.


Hey, Norman?

Are you afraid of dying?

What?

Are you afraid to die?

What the hell kind of question is that?

I was just wondering, that's all.

I don't know... why everybody has to talk about everything all the time.

Let's go home, boy.

Are you sure we're gonna be able to get out of here?

'Course we can. Pull up the anchor.

Get up on deck.

Hey, get back here.

I forgot you're a hotshot boat driver.

Here, you take the wheel and I'll navigate.

Yeah?

Well, you know, I'm not afraid to do this.

I know. Just... take us real slow.

Do what I tell you.

Okay, turn it over.

All right. Take it forward.

Now give her a hard left.

Okay.

Port.

Okay, good.

All right. Starboard again.

Okay.

Port. To the left.

Good God! Reverse!

Full throttle, reverse!

Reverse! Oh, God!

Reverse!

Norman?

Norman!

Chels... Chels...

Chels... oh! Norman!

Norman!

Norman, please!

Oh, God, Norman!

Oh, Norman, I'm sorry!

I'm sorry!

Hold on.

I'm gonna bring you over here.

Norman.

Norman, grab on.

Grab onto the rock.

Grab onto the rock.

I'm sorry.

Billy!

Come on now.

Hold onto the rock.


Oh, Charlie, thank God you're here!

Come on! We're going for a ride!

Norman and the kid are out on the lake.

They should have been home hours ago.

Hurry up.

Norman isn't ever late.

I don't understand it. Oh, he'll be all right.

Ethel, we've been back and forth here three times.

They must have pulled up somewhere.

You don't suppose he would've gone in there, do you, Charlie?

He's not that crazy.

Yes, he is.

Let's go.

I'm not gonna drive my boat into Purgatory Cove.

Yes, you are, Charlie.

I'll point the way.

Holy mackinoly.

It's full of rocks, Charlie. Look out.

To the left. Okay... Okay... Yeah. Yeah.

Am I all right? Okay, keep to the right.

Keep to the right.

Keep to the right! All right, I am!

That's better, that's better. Okay.

Straight ahead.

See anything?

A lot of rocks here. Oh, Lordy.

Norman Thayer, Jr., where the hell are you?

Charlie! There they are, Charlie.

Oh, my God!

Norman!

Ethel!

You shouldn't be out here this time of night.

You poop!

You goddamn poop!


How are my boys?

I'm off to the woods to find mushrooms or flowers or something.

Are you gonna be all right?

Bye-bye.

Hey!

Where do you juvenile delinquents think you're off to?

Norman, I thought you were in too much pain to exert yourself.

Well... well, I am.

I'm just doing this for Billy.

Give the poor boy another chance to catch a fish.

We've been doing goddamn jigsaw puzzles for a week.

You will stay in our cove, won't you?

There aren't any trout left in our cove.

Norman, we have enough trout left in the fridge to last us six years.

But we haven't caught Walter yet.

Never mind. We'll stay in the damn cove.

♪ With a tent on the banks of the Golden Pond ♪

♪ We are the girls ♪

♪ From Camp Hoochicoya ♪

♪ You can tell who we are ♪

♪ By the gleam in our eyes ♪

♪ Oh, our minds are clear ♪

♪ And our hearts are strong ♪

♪ We are dancing here ♪

♪ But we won't be long ♪

♪ There will soon be deer ♪

♪ Where there now are thorns ♪

♪ But we'll remember our years ♪

♪ On Golden Pond ♪

♪ How! ♪ Hey!

Mommy!

How did you get here?

I rented a car.

A Volare made by Plymouth.

Look at you.

My God, you've had this jacket as long as I can remember.

It looks it, doesn't it?

It looks great.

How was your trip?

Not bad. How's the kid?

You still got him or did you drown him?

We still got him.

He's out there fishing with his best buddy.

You can see him.

Where's the Thayer IV?

Charlie's fixing her.

Norman and Billy tried to drive her through a rock in Purgatory Cove.

Did they get hurt?

Norman got a bump on the head which he's playing to the hilt, but he's all right.

They're both fine, thank God.

Do you still have Bill, or did you drown him?

Oh, I still have him. He had to get back to the coast.

He had a mouth that needed looking into.

So, Norman and Billy have gotten along all right?

Billy is the happiest thing that's happened to Norman since Roosevelt.

I should have rented him a 13-year-old boy years ago.

You could have traded me in.

Except I think he probably makes a better son than I did.

You made a very nice daughter.

How come it's so easy?

What do you mean, darling?

Why wasn't that old son of a bitch ever my friend?

You're sounding very childish.

Of course he was your friend.

He's your father.

Chelsea, you're such a nice person.

Can't you think of something nice to say?

I married Bill in Brussels.

You did what in Brussels?

I married Bill.

Does it count in this country?

'Fraid so!

Bless you, darling. Congratulations.

Nothing to it. Norman will be so pleased.

Yeah, sure.

What do you suppose he's gonna say?

"Hey, Chels... fantastic.

I'm so happy that you finally got your life together and I'm so proud."

And he will be proud, but...

No, he won't. No, he won't.

And you know why? Because he doesn't care.

He is a selfish son of a bitch!

That old son of a bitch happens to be my husband.

Oh... shit!

Oh, shit!

Norman! Shit!

Don't get so excited.

It's only a sunfish.

Only a sunfish?

Are you doubting the word of a genius?

There are no respectable trout in this cove.

Chased them out years ago.

Well, it's doing a pretty good trout imitation.

Get the net!

Good God! It's Walter!

What the hell you doing here, you son of a bitch?

Keep that line tight, boy!

Oh, you beauty! Keep your line tight.

Keep reeling in.

A little closer. A little closer.

Oh, look at that!

Have we caught Walter?

We caught Walter, the son of a bitch!

Chels.

I brought your sweater and your shoes.

And your car's out front.

I'm such an ass, I'm sorry.

I'm sorry, too.

But, darling, you're wrong about your dad.

He does care. He cares deeply.

It's just that he's an absolute mutt about telling anyone.

I know he'd walk through fire for me.

And he'd walk through fire for you, too.

And if you don't understand that, you're not looking closely enough.

I don't even know him.

Chels, Norman is 80 years old.

He has heart palpitations and trouble remembering things.

Just exactly when do you expect this friendship to begin?

I'm afraid of him.

Well, he's afraid of you.

So you should get along fine.

Here he comes, Chels.

Talk to him.

Hey, hey.

Hey!

Look at you!

Hi, kid. Where's the dentist?

He had to get back.

He'll call you tonight. Okay.

Hello, Norman. Well, well, well...

Chelsea, we caught Walter.

Do you know who Walter is?

Well, I have a feeling he's a fish. Yes.

A humongous fish.

And we caught him today, didn't we, Norman?

Well, let me see him.

We let him go.

Yeah, we let him go.

I think I've heard this story before.

No, no, it's true.

See, Norman and I thought that if Walter's lived this long, we should let him keep on living.

I'm gonna go tell Ethel.

Hey, Norman!

We caught the son of a bitch! We caught him!

Good job!

You got yourself a friend, huh?

He's all right. Hasn't been too difficult.

How's your forehead?

Your... Oh, this. It's all right.

A lot of pain. Nothing to worry about.

Norman, I want to talk to you.

What seems to be the problem?

There's no problem. I just...

I want to talk to you, I...

I think that... maybe you and I should have the kind of relationship that we're supposed to have.

What kind of relationship is that?

Well, you know, like a... like a father and a daughter.

Just in the nick of time?

Worried about the will, are you?

Well, I'm leaving everything to you, except what I'm taking with me.

Just stop it!

I don't want anything!

It seems that you and me have been mad at each other for so long.

I didn't know we were mad, I thought we just didn't like each other.

I want to be your friend.

This mean you... come around more often?

It'll mean a lot to your mother.

I'll come around more often.

Well...

Yep!

I got married in Brussels.

You did?

In Brussels!

He makes me very happy.

Well, good.

Does he speak English?

Bill. I married Bill.

Bill? Oh, Bill!

I'm glad, Chelsea.

That's San Frantastic.

What? Is Billy gonna be living with you?

Well, good.

Isn't that something? Good for you!

You know something?

I got him doing the backflip just like a pro.

Oh, yeah? That's great.

Yeah, want me to get him down to show you?

No, no. Not right now. Okay.

Oh, that's right.

You were never a great backflipper, were you?

I was always too fat, remember?

Yeah, I do remember that now.

Well, probably... a lot easier for a boy.

I beg your pardon.

Do you want to see me do a backflip?

I am going to do a goddamn backflip.

Chelsea, you don't have to.

I want to.

Make sure you go up, not just back.

Up and back.

Oh, I'm scared.

Don't be scared.

The backflip is one of the easiest dives of all.

I'm scared anyway.

Don't do it.

Doesn't matter if you don't do the stupid dive.

It's not important.

I did it!

She did it!

Chelsea did a backflip!

I went over!

It was lousy, but I did it!

Good for you!

Yay!

You could come out instead of going to Florida.

I will discuss it.

If I can persuade Norman that Los Angeles is part of the United States, it shouldn't be too much trouble.

Norman!

What in the world are you doing now?

Hey, you're a cool breeze.

Be sure to take a break from cruising.

Wow! Thank you, Captain.

Norman, he can't take that fool thing on the plane.

Yes, he can.

Got something for you, too.

You know what this is?

University of Pennsylvania Diving Finals, 1921.

Second place.

Oh, thanks.

Now I can retire. Show that to your new husband.

Maybe he'll give us a discount on dental work.

Guess I'll be seeing you, you nitwit.

Okay. I'll miss you, Norman.

Bye-bye, darling.

Good-bye, woman. Bye-bye, Billy.

Well... good-bye, Norman.

Dad.


Come on, Norman.

Let's get these last boxes out to the car and be gone.

For God's sake!

Not too heavy, is it?

Of course it's not too heavy...

God, this is heavy!

You're trying to kill me.

I've thought about it. Put it down if it's too much.

What the hell you have in here? My mother's china.

Put the box down, darling.

Your mother never liked me.

'Course she did.

Norman, what is it?

What's the matter, darling?

What's the matter?

Oh, my God!

Norman! Norman!

My darling... my darling.

I'll get your medicine.

Here, Norman.

Take this, darling.

Put it under your tongue.

What is it? Nitroglycerin.

Put it under your tongue.

Dear God, don't take him now.

You don't want him.

He's just an old poop.

Norman! Norman!

Maybe we should call a doctor.

Oh, yes, I'll get the telephone.

I'll get the telephone.

Hello, hello.

Dear God. Dear God.

How are you feeling, Norman?

Pretty good. How are you?

How's the angina?

The what? The pain, dammit!

Pretty good, as pain goes.

This stupid operator!

Hello. Hello.

Hello, hello, hello.

What's the matter with her?

She's slow.

How are you feeling now?

I don't know.

Are you planning to die?

Is that what you're up to?

While I'm waiting for this moron to answer the telephone, let me say something to you, Norman Thayer Jr., I'd rather you didn't.

Really? Yes.

Oh, this stupid, stupid operator.

I'm going to have to call the hospital directly.

The phone book... I'll get the phone book.

Ethel.

What is it? Will you come here?

Oh, my God.

Yes, Norman?

My darling.

Ethel.

Yes. I'm here, Norman.

Ethel.

Yes, yes, yes?

Ethel.

What is it, Norman?

I think I'm feeling all right now.

My God, are you serious?

My heart stopped hurting.

Maybe I'm dead.

I love you so much.

Sorry about your mother's china.

Why did you strain yourself? You know better.

I was showing off. Trying to turn you on.

Well, you succeeded.

No need for you to try that sort of thing again.

Good.

You know something?

This is the first time that I've really felt that we were gonna die.

I've known it all along.

When I looked at you here, on the floor, I could actually see you dead.

I could see you...

I could see you in your blue suit and white starched shirt in Thomas' Funeral Parlor on Bradshaw Street.

How'd I look? Not good, Norman.

You've been talking about death ever since we met.

But this is the first time I really felt it.

How's it feel?

It feels odd.

Cold... I guess.

Not... not that bad really.

Not so... frightening.

Almost comforting. Not such a bad place to go.

I don't know.

Oh, Norman.

Oh, God.

Well... don't you wanna say good-bye to the lake?

Do you think you're strong enough?

I think so.

If I fall over face first in the water, you'll know I wasn't.

Well, take it easy, for God's sake.

I'm only good for one near miss a day.

Hello, there.

Hi.

Want to dance?

Or would you rather just suck face?

Norman, you really are a case.

Ethel, listen.

The loons.

They've come around to say good-bye.

Just two of them now.

Their baby's all grown up and moved to Los Angeles or somewhere.