Sons and Lovers (1960) Script

Morning, Tom.


Yes, mum?

What you doing down so early, son?

I was finishing this.

My picture? You finished that last night.

Well, I changed it a bit. Look.

Bless my soul. Whenever did you see me in a hat like that?

The moment I woke up. I suddenly said to myself, "that's not my mother in that nubbly old bonnet."

It's my bonnet. What's the matter with it?

Well, I thought it could do with a pick-me-up, that one.

I'll box your ears for impudence.

Putting me in that sort of Bobby-dazzler.

You love it, my pigeon. You know you do.

If you were wearin' that, and I was walkin' down the street behind you, I'd say, "doesn't that little person fancy herself?"

Well, she doesn't. She's not at all sure that it suits her.

I suppose you'd rather be in dirty black, looking as though you were wrapped in burnt paper.

To me, it's right for you.

It's too young for me. Oh, it's too young, is it?

Why don't you buy some false white hair and stick it on your head?

I'll be white soon enough. Don't you dare.

What would I want with a white-haired mother?

Paul, don't. Not those knives. Go on. I'll manage.

All right. If you don't need me, I'll go on.

Where are you going, son? To see Miriam.

Can't you wait till you've had your breakfast?

I've had some toast. That's all I want.

Miriam Leivers must be marvelously fascinating if you can't wait till the sun's up before you go traipsing off to that farm again.

Well, I like Miriam.

I'll start work next week, and I won't see her for a while.

Like her?

Seems there's no one else for you but her now.

Oh, nonsense, mother. You talk as if we're lovers.

She doesn't even walk with my arm.

Why are you always flying off to her, then?

I like to talk to her.

Is there no one else to talk to?

Not about the things we talk of. What things?

Painting and books. You don't care about Herbert Spencer or Robert...

How do you know I don't care about Herbert Spencer? Do you ever try me?

Mother, it's different. Miriam and I are young...

And I'm old. Now we get to the truth of it.

And it's not in that drawing.

Yes, I may stand aside. I'm only good enough to wait on you.

Miriam has all the rest.

They're coming down, and the kettle not boiling. Good-bye, mum.


Here, dad. Look at Paul's latest.

Who's it supposed to be, then? You know well enough, and I think it's good.

You'd look a proper Gabby, you would, dressed in a bonnet like that.

I don't see why.

Are you limping, son? Oh, it's nothing, mother.

They was betting me last night I couldn't dive into the canal off of the bridge.

And you did? Aye, I went right to the bottom.

Scraped my knee on some old tin cans.

But I won two shillings. You're a wild one.

Two Bob? You be in the moon and stars tonight?

Oh, I thought I might take mother to the fair.

Hey, mother, do you want to come to the fair? I'll see.

Take your dad to a pint in the stars first, son.

I might, at that.

Dad, you've spoiled it. What?

The sketch. Oh, oh. We'll soon get that right.

Give it here.

No, no, no. You're making it worse.

What are you doing with that?

Nothing, lass. Just a little accident. We'll soon have it.

You've ruined it. Well, he can soon knock off another, can't he?

He's got nothing else to do but lie up there in bed.

He was up hours before you, working on this sketch you've just spoiled.

And how much were we going to get for that?

He'll bring home his share when he starts work next week.

Work? that lad doesn't know what work is.

Sitting on his bottom all week in an office.

Scholarships and holidays and spouting algebra, while we're sweating down there like suffocating bats.

Aye. Well, hurry up and stop your shouting, 'cause we're late.

He only shouts when he knows he's in the wrong.

He's only getting half as much as Arthur anyway.

Now, if that lad was to go down the pit...

He's not going down the pit, and you know it.

He's going to earn decent money one day.

Decent? What we get's indecent, I suppose?

Come on, dad, and stop your shouting.

And I'm keeping him where he'll get his chance...

Above the ground.

Oh! Oh, it's you.

Oh. Good morning, my lady. You look more beautiful than ever.

I'm sure she's the dark lady of the sonnets.

Oh, no. She's the lady of the lake.

Oh, it's good to be up here.

When I came up this morning, I stopped for a moment to look off at Nottingham in the distance.

And I imagined it to be London. I saw myself in my own studio by the river.

Painting beautiful women all day. No.

Painting life, real people and real things, wherever I find them.

That's what you want more than anything, isn't it? Yes.

But the place where you were born and grew up isn't so easy to throw off.

My mother's had a very hard time.

I owe her a great deal, and I want to repay her somehow.

I want to do something too.

I want a chance to be somebody.


I forgot to bring that book of Shelley. Oh.

I'll bring it tomorrow.

You know, my mother disapproves more and more of the books you bring.

She blames you for putting ideas into my head.

Does she think heaven frowns on ideas?

Your mother breathes religion through her nostrils.

Do you think that's wrong?

It's not religious just to be religious.

I think a crow is religious as it sails across the sky.

It's showing the glory of god, but it doesn't know it.

God doesn't know things. He is things.

I don't think my mother would understand that.

But I do.

Looking at you now, there's more religion in you...

Than your mother could ever learn from the saints.

What is it?

It's the mine!

Jimmy, you all right?

My son?

My son.

It's a sad homecoming for you, William. Yes, mother.

I'll put the kettle on.

Well, William, how is the job?

Well, I like London, mother.

You can, have a lot of fun there.

That wasn't what I asked, son.

Oh, the job's all right.

I hope you're getting your sleep.

You can't go working in that shop all day and gallivanting all night.

The human frame won't stand it.

I'll try, mother.

Well, Paul, when do you start work at Jordan's?

Next week, but I've been thinking.

It won't pay much, and now with Arthur... gone, I think I should go down the mine. You haven't seen enough today?

It won't be forever, just till we get back on our feet.

We'll manage.

I don't want you wasting yourself instead of finding a place in the world.

Is Jordan's a place in the world?

Making out orders for elastic stockings and women's corsets?

It's better than coal dust and drink. You prefer that?

William, tell him.

Tell him how you felt when the letter came, saying you'd got the job.

Tell him.

I'd have worked for a shilling a week, and slept by the river because...

Because it was a start. I'd escaped.

Stick to what you are, son.

Don't let yourself be dragged down. That will do!

So he'll be dragged down, will he?

What's good enough for me isn't good enough for him?

My father sent me down the pit when I was 12.

And you sent Arthur!

He wanted it. You'll not hold that against me.

You've no right to set your sons against their father.

When a man tries hard for his family, he wants a bit of respect, a bit of gratitude.

You treat me like a dog. You lot think you're so fine because you won't get dirt in your hands and coal on your faces!

What's so fine about sitting on a stool six days a week and having a few shillings left to buy a new seat for your britches?

And what do you do with all the money you've got left?

The same as I'm gonna do now.

I'll see you again when I see you.

And it'll be before I want to.

Nottingham, Melton Mowbray, Kettering, London train!

Well, son, I hope you'll come back to a happier house at Christmas.

Mother, it didn't seem right to tell you this after, well, after Arthur, but...

I've met a wonderful girl, mother. I'm going to get married.

Who is she? Her name is Louisa Lily Isobel western.

All the men have been running after her, but I'm the one she's picked.

I hope that's not why you went chasing her, because all the others were running.


Why, she's got a naked bust.

You sound like Miriam's mother. She's got beautiful shoulders.

I didn't expect to see so much of them at the first view.

Wait till you meet her, mother. You won't blame me then.

You should see all the eyes when I walk down Piccadilly with her.

Well, no wonder, if that's all she wears. Good-bye, love. Take care of yourself.

And don't forget to get your proper rest. Bye-bye, mother.

Good-bye, will. Good-bye.

Oh. The photograph! What?

The photograph! Oh!

Spending all his money on a dressed-up creature.

No, the creature's naked, mother.

It's strange to think... She means more to him now than his own mother.

Oh, what nonsense you talk. It's true.

Oh, I know it's silly, but that's the way mothers are.

Well, I shan't get married as long as I've got you.

I'll get rich with my painting, and we'll see the world together.

And for a start, I'm going to take you for a special treat to Nottingham.

Now, Paul, you know we can't afford treats.

Well, this is a treat we can afford. It's a surprise.

Why, there's Miriam.

Did you invite her here? Yes.

It's a wonder her mother allows it.

She ought to be helping up at the farm instead of wandering about down here.

Poor Miriam. I want you to look at this picture she's looking at.

Hello, Mrs. morel.

Oh, Paul.

Well? Yes.

You've got the way he looks now.

I wish you'd seen him as he was.

It's wonderful, Paul. Wonderful. Don't you think so, Mrs. morel?

It's the best thing here.

Come away a minute. Come over here.

I want to watch them look at it.

They don't like it. It's too good for them.

Don't be so touchy, son.

Watch this one.

He can tell. What?

I've had no training.

I wish I hadn't sent it in. I've got a good mind to take it down.

That wizen-hearted old stick!

What does he know about pictures?


It's good. It's excellent.

Well, they like it.

Aren't you going to tell me what a fine fellow I am?

Why don't you praise me to the skies?

Because I'll have the trouble of dragging you down.

Wait. I'll catch up to you.

He's not certain of himself.

He wants someone to urge him on.

I'd like him to fall in love with the right girl.

Someone strong. Stronger than you?

If she was really right for him, she would be stronger than me.

Come on.

Waiting up for me, lass?

I've been giving them a hand at the pub, washing out the glasses.

They chose the right one for the job.

Two hours, no stopping. What do you think Fred gives me?

Nothing but a lousy half-crown.

I expect he thought you made the rest up in beer.

That I haven't. I've been to the fair.

Who might this be?

That's the young lady our William's walking out with.

Her name's Louisa Lily Isobel western.

Come again tomorrow.

She looks a bright spark, she does.

Is she an actress? She is not.

She's supposed to be a lady.

And no clothes to show for it.

Lads would like to have her down the pits. Walter!

Oh. I brought thee a coconut, lass.

How much did you pay for that? Nowt, I won it at the fair.

They let you shy for it for free, did they?

Thou never said thank you for anything in thy life.

If thou must know, I spent fourpence on it.

I remembered how much you like coconuts.

Where did you get that idea?

That time at the goose fair, when we was courtin'.

You said if I didn't win thee a coconut, you wouldn't marry me.

That was a long time ago, Walter.

Always taking the curl out of me, you were.

It didn't seem to make much difference.

Well, I'm uncurled now, aren't I?

You can be proud of yourself for that.

There you are. Best get upstairs and sleep it off.

Can't even have a pint of beer after a hard day's work but I have to be told I'm drunk.

And so you are, most nights.

It's got so I almost dread you coming home.

Right. Well, you said it.

There's only one answer to that. Go on to bed.

And to think I spent fourpence trying to please thee.

Mucky little hussy!

Hello, mum. Hello, son.

Have you had anything to eat?

Yes, mother. I had supper with Miriam.


Mother, why don't you like her?

Oh, I've tried, Paul.

I... I feel she wants to... Shut me out.

She'd leave me no room. I wouldn't let any girl do that.

She's no ordinary girl, Paul. With Miriam Leivers, I feel...

She wants all of you all of the time.

She'd leave nothing for anyone else, not even yourself.

Oh, you are exaggerating. I know she's a bit intense.

You'll not be seeing me again.

You'll be wanting your boots, then.

What does he mean? He's running away. He's run away before.

Once, when you were very small, he even got past the local pub.

Gertrude. Gertrude morel.

There's a contraption outside. A contraption?

Aye, a motorcar. It's stopped outside your front door.

Oh. Good day to you, madam.

This wizen-hearted old stick would like to see Mr. Paul morel.

I do beg your pardon.

I should think so indeed. Is he at home?

Well, he's out at present, collecting his father's wages, but he won't be long. Will you come inside?

I'm Mr. Hadlock. Henry Hadlock.

This is the way. The kettle's on the boil.

I'll make you a cup of tea. Thank you.

Come away from there. You'll make it explode.

What's this? It's a contraption.

There's a man inside come to see you.

Very grand from the gentry.

I've not been down a mine myself, naturally.

But I could see at once the truth in your son's...

Paul. Paul, this is Mr. Henry Hadlock from Nottingham.

He did like your picture. He's bought it.

He says you're going to be a very fine painter.

Do you mean that, sir? My dear boy, I didn't motor all this way down in order to fill my lungs with coal dust.

Would you like to go to London?


Oh, don't tell me you've never heard of it.

It's south of Nottingham and a good deal larger.

Yes, sir. I know.

Go to some big art school there, and after two or three years, well, you might show signs of producing something worthwhile.

But I haven't got the money for that. He's very slow, isn't he?

The only reason I'm here is that I like to help young artists.

And if the gamble comes off, to help myself too.

I'm not a charitable institution.

I shall expect to get my return on you.

W-well... I... I don't know what to say.

Might I suggest the choice of one of two words, both quite easy to pronounce?

Yes or no?

Oh, it's a great chance, isn't it, mother?

Oh, good gracious. Haven't you got a mind of your own?

When would he have to leave?

As soon as possible. No more shilly-shallying.

This is my husband. Walter, this is Mr. Henry Hadlock.

How do? Oh, shovel dirt.

Now I see the original.

You've got it very well, the inarticulate primitive.

The what? Mr. Hadlock's bought the picture I did of you.

What, he wants a picture of me on his wall?

How much did he pay?

I... I forgot to ask.

Twenty pounds. Twenty pound?

I'd work two months without seeing the light of day and not earn that.

See here, Mr. haddock. Hadlock.

It's me you're buying in that picture.

Here's the real thing. Twenty pounds' worth of sweat here.

Go on, feel it. Walter!

Thank you. I have already captured the atmosphere.

Come and see me tomorrow. We'll make our plans.

Thank you, sir. 4:00 will do. Don't you dare to let me down.

He won't. I must go. I've got quite a long journey.

Why must you act like that?

I'm not loved here 'cause I'm low, so I act low.

Isn't it wonderful? Yes, it is. I must go tell Miriam.

What are you trying to catch, Hubert?

Grasshopper. I've caught it. I've caught it.

It's gone.

Oh, I love you, I love you.

Don't, Miriam! Don't, Miriam!

Let me go! Show me you love me.

Let him go, Miriam.

You want to keep smothering the child all the time for?

Oh, mother. Is it so wrong for me to love my own little brother?

Love is a thing of the spirit. We have it inside us.

We don't have to show it with our arms and lips.

Come on, Hubert. It's time to wash for tea.

Shall I keep you here or let you go?

Let me go. You want to go? You sure?

You want to go far away. Stop it.

Look how you come back to me. Don't. No higher.

That's not a bit high, silly. No higher.

You want to go higher? Let me down.

It's a treat of a swing.

I'm goin' to the top of the world.

You comin' with me? No?

What you gonna do without me? You'll be back.

Are you sure?


Paul? Paul, where are you?

Paul, whe... where did you get all this money?

Paul, come down!

Women are all the same.

They always want to drag a man down to their own level.

Where did you get them from? What's happened?

My whole life's changed, that's what's happened. Sit down.

Everything I've always wanted is coming to me now.

My life's beginning at last.

It's really beginning. How do you mean? What...

There's a man come from Nottingham, and he's bought my painting, and he's gonna send me to London.

What do you think of that? London?

He's going to have me trained. Paul, are you serious?

I've got a patron. When do you go?

All the pictures I want to paint, and they'll be shown in a gallery.

Paul, I'm so glad for you. I'm gonna be famous, and I might even be rich.

And do you know the funny thing about it?

This man, this wonderful man...

Oh, listen. Please listen.

He's the same man we saw that day in the castle, the one that hated my picture.

That's what I thought... Have you finished?

May I say something?

Can I get a word in edgeways? What?

What? It doesn't matter.

Of course it matters. It's wonderful, isn't it?

It's the most wonderful thing that ever happened, isn't it?

Oh, yes. It's wonderful. Yes, it's wonderful. Everything's wonderful.

And you're wonderful.

What are you frightened of? Paul, I...

I can't always be so spiritual with you.

Perhaps it's a good thing I'm going away.

Oh, no. Don't say that.

I'm going to miss you so much.

That's what I was trying to tell you.

No. You'll only miss a disembodied spirit, not a man.

Not somebody made of flesh and blood.

I am flesh and blood, you know.

I've got a heart that beats. Feel it.

And my blood tingles.

Don't you think we've been a...

A little too fierce in what they call purity?

Being afraid isn't... isn't pure.

It's a sort of dirtiness.

Oh, I want you, and I want to love you.

I'm sorry.

I-if you could... help me.

Teach me not to be ashamed.

If you would have me, you wouldn't be ashamed.

We belong to each other, don't we? Yes.

Then won't you trust me? Oh, it's not that. It's...

What? I don't know!

I'm afraid. Miriam? Miriam, where are you?

I must go.

You shall have me.


Oh, there you are.

What is it? Nothing. I'm out of breath.

You've been running away from Paul.

I know why.

It's horrible. Mother, why must it be horrible?

The good lord willed that we should be born into this world to suffer.

He willed that we should love each other, didn't he?

And that when we love, it should be a joy.

Isn't that what marriage is supposed to be? We marry to have children.

And to fulfill that duty, we have to suffer.

This... between men and women is ugly.

It's dreadful, but we have to endure it if our union is to be blessed.

Mummy! wait a minute, Hubert. I'm coming.

Why must it be ugly?

You wicked girl.

Pray to the good lord to forgive you.

May he keep you pure in mind and spirit and protect you with his strength from the sins of the flesh.

Mummy, where are you? All right, Hubert!

Oh, lord...

Keep me from loving Paul morel if I ought not to love him.

But if I may love him, let me love him splendidly.

♪ Glory, glory hallelujah ♪

♪ glory, glory hallelujah ♪♪


Oh, you clumsy drunken fool.

Who says I'm drunk? It's an accident.

Say you're not drunk, if you can. "Say you're not drunk."

Only a fancy hussy like thee could have such a thought.

You bring home little enough money without wasting good food, though there's always enough to get drunk on.

Well, this is your supper I'm throwing away.

It's my money, and it's my house, and if you don't like my house, you can get out of it.

This'll do for me. You leave that alone. That's for Paul, now.

Paul, Paul, Paul. He can buy his own food now, can't he?

Give it over. You can cut yourself some bread and dripping.

Oh, I can, can I?

Then we'll all have some bread and dripping!

You're the most despicable creature that ever walked in shoe leather.

Shut your face, woman. Go on. Get the dripping!

Not even a knife to cut the bread with.

You clumsy, drunken lout. The house is filthy with you.

Then get out of it!

Go on, then! Get out of my house!

No, Walter. Get out!

No, Walter!

Walter! Let me in!

Don't be silly, Walter. Let me in.

Walter. Walter!

Oh, dear.

Oh, the nuisance. The nuisance.


Mother. What happened?

It's your father. He came home drunk and... what happened?

I'm locked out. It's a good job the neighbors didn't hear.

They'll hear this!

You drunken coward! What's that?

You coward! You wouldn't dare... Paul, no! He's your father!

What? You young jockey, you'll get...

You call that a father?

I'll let him know what it feels like to be his son!

Couldn't bear it. Don't ever think it.

I'm sick to death of all of you.

Let me see here.

Mother, sleep on the couch in the parlor tonight, not with him.

I'll sleep in my own bed. Why?

I'll sleep in my own bed. Mother, you can't love him now, not after all...

He had all of my love once, Paul, a long time ago. He was different then.

He was so handsome with his way of laughing. He was always laughing.

I loved him then.

I don't want to hear any more.

The first day I saw him, I felt as if I'd... I'd drunk wine.

I thought he was so brave working down there under the earth.

He only laughed and he said, "oh, you get used to it.

You pop out at night, like the mice, to see what's going on."

If he was a man then, why did he stop?

Because I made him face things.

This house... he... he told me that he owned this house.

It was only a week before William was born I found out we only rented it.

We... we didn't even own the furniture.

Did you tell him you'd found out?

He couldn't bear that.

He'd promised to give me all the things he thought a lady ought to have, and I made him see there was nothing behind all his show.

I don't think he ever forgave me for that.

And now he's what he is, and I...

Good night, son. I'm not going to London.

I can't leave you alone with him.

You can't throw away the only chance you've ever had.

You're more important than anything I do.

And you're my future. You go to London, son.

I'll start at Jordan's next week.

Is this what I stayed for? To have him hold you back now?

There's nowhere to go without you.

But will you be happy, Paul? I... I want you to be happy.

We'll manage, mother.

Good night.

I've brought thee a cup of tea, lass.

You're dressed. Why didn't you wake me? No cause. It's early yet.

Drink it up. It'll pop thee off to sleep again.

I must get Paul his breakfast... No, no. That's seen to.

Go on. Drink. Take it.

I'll bet my life there's no sugar in it.

That there is. There's an extra-big lump, special for thee.


She's having her rest. Take your breakfast, lad. It's ready.

I don't want any. Now don't be a baby.

Take your hands off me. Paul. Sit down and eat your breakfast.

You don't want to go upsetting your mother.

You dare say that. Oh, grow up, lad.

It's happened before. It'll happen again.

Your mother and I have been together a long time.

We understand, if you don't. Now come on. Sit down.

Come on. Eat it up and stop being a softie.

There, lad.

Excuse me. Could you tell me where I could find Mr. Pappleworth?

Spiral department, through there.

You the new lad? Yes.

You're early for Pappleworth. Anyway, you can wait in there.

You might take this corset frame and give it to my...

The overseer, Mrs. Dawes.

Thanks. Yes.

If you want to try that on, there's a room at the back.

Oh, no. Thank you.

This is for, miss Dawes.

You mean Mrs. Dawes.

Not that there's any difference at the moment.

She's just come in. I'll go and get her.

Thank you.

♪ Only one fella and two little girls ♪

♪ oh, what could he do what could he do ♪

♪ two little girls who were anxious to do what he wanted them to ♪ oh, a girl's in danger.

♪ Only one fella and two little girls ♪

♪ oh, gee, they were shy really so shy ♪

♪ two little girls who were sure they would die from a wink of the eye ♪

♪ from the handsome stranger ♪

♪ only one fella and two little girls ♪♪ Good morning. We could do with a bit less noise.

What's this, a complaint? Where does it hurt you?

No. No, sir.

This is for miss... Mrs. Dawes.

It was given to me outside.

It must have been Baxter, Mr. Pappleworth.

Oh, I see. You're our new lad.

Yes, sir. Paul morel. Well, we've lost enough time.

Get your jacket off. I can see you've met my staff.

Well, we haven't been introduced.

They talk too much, but they're a nice lot of girls.

And don't you go and ruin him like you did the last one.

Polly, may and Emma, trusses.

Connie and Lil, reinforced corsets.

Beatrice, elastic hose.

Fanny, kneecaps. Lizzie, packer.

Betty, stocking machine.

Oh, and Clara.

Clara Dawes, our, overseer. How do you do?

This is Paul morel, our new packer.

Mrs. Dawes, this is for you. Thank you.

You'll keep Paul busy? As busy as we're kept.

It's sweated labor here, Mr. morel.

The men have seen to that. Now, Clara, I've told you before.

You can say what you like on that platform of yours, but we don't want it at Jordan's.

Clara believes in women's rights.

You don't find that amusing, Mr. morel?

Why should I? Most men do. They laugh at us.

But they're really frightened. What are we frightened of?

The idea that we're as good as you are.

Yes? No, I can't hear.

If the women weren't such fools, the men wouldn't be so bad.

Well, whose fault's that?

Now, don't shout. Oh, be quiet a minute, ladies.

Don't shout. I'm getting an earhole full of dust down here.

All right. I'm coming up. Votes for women.

Well, my lad. Clara will show you the ropes much better than I could, to her way of thinking.

I'll leave you in the presence of the sex we're all scared of.

Votes for women.


I've torn my sleeve on a branch.

Did you hurt yourself? No.

How warm you are.

Come inside. I'll mend it.

No. Let's stay out a while.

All right.

There's a sort of hush tonight.

The whole night's wondering and asleep.

I suppose that's what we do in death... sleep in wonder.

We must go.


Forgive me. Forgive you? I love you.

You hated it, didn't you?

Paul, I... I'm sorry.

You hated it.

You closed your eyes and clenched your hands.

And I feel like a criminal.

Oh, no.

I did want so much to give you my love.

To you, it was a sacrifice.

You did it only for me and not for yourself.

And for you it can't ever be any way else, because that's the way you're made.

To love with the spirit and only the spirit, like a nun.

It was a crime for me to persuade you.

I tried to make myself believe it would bring us closer together.

It has.

Surely it has.


No, it's only pulled us further apart.

♪ Silent night ♪

♪ holy night ♪♪ come on. William and Louisa will be here soon!

The wind from the scullery blows through a man's ribs like a five-barred gate.

It'd have some difficulty blowing through yours.

I'm nothing but a skinned rabbit. Never was.

A man never had a better start, if it was body that counted.

Paul. Paul, you should have seen your father when he was your age, before the coal dust had scarred his skin.

A fine figure of a man your father was, and such a dancer.

Give me back a bit of a rub, will you, lass?

It's as cold as death.

The next world itself wouldn't be hot enough for you.

Nay, they'll see it's good and drafty for me.

Mother, we're here! William.

Hey. come on, Paul. Get your... go on.

Aaah. Wait, wait, wait.

They'll be waiting to see us. Come along, quickly.

Mother, Louisa. How do you do?

What a pretty little house. How do you do? You must be tired.

Hello. William. Would you like a nice cup of tea?

Well, we've bought you some champagne. Champagne?

It's beautifully chilled. Chilled as we were.

There wasn't any heating on the train.

This is Paul.

Paul! Louisa.

Hello, Paul. Who's going to open a bottle of champagne? I will.

I always say Christmas isn't Christmas without champagne, don't you agree?

It's a 1902 vintage. Quite a good year, I believe, or so the man at the shop told me.

Not that way. I don't want a black eye. Sorry.

Will always says I don't know anything, but he didn't know how to open a bottle of champagne, either, before he met me. Did you, will, dear?

Well, mother, what do you think of her, now that you've seen the rest of her?

Mother was a bit shocked by your photograph.

She called you a naked bust. I wasn't naked at all.

I was wearing such a pretty little dress, but the man who took the picture cut it all off.

Quick, the glasses.


How do, lass?

It's father's bath night.

Paul, put it on a plate.

Oh, let me help you. Can I help?

Yes, all right. You can pour it out.

Mother. I know she's not like you. She's...

She's not serious. She can't think.

And everything she wants costs money.

But you do like her, don't you? Of course, son.

Champagne's ready. Will. Will, wait for your father.

Oh, it'll go flat if you leave it now. There's plenty more.

That'll go flat too if you don't put the cork in the bottle.

Happy Christmas. Happy Christmas. Happy Christmas.

Will? Mistletoe! Where?

Over there. Oh, that's the stuff.

Here you are, love. Paul?

I don't think we need it. Come and help me empty the bathtub.

They certainly don't need us.

Nor anyone else in the world.

What do you think of her, mother? She's pretty enough.

But those blessed airs. She's so silly.

Can't William see that? Our William's in love.

At the moment, he's blind. We'll see how long it lasts.

But, mother, if she makes him so happy, even if it doesn't last, it's worth it, isn't it?

If you're thinking of Miriam, son, I've told you before.

She wants your very soul, and that won't make you happy.

Oh! I thought you were never going to let me breathe again.

I think that'd be a very nice way to die. Oh.

Louisa, would you like to see your bedroom?

Thank you! If I have the breath for the stairs.

Bye, darling.


Isn't she glorious?

Well, isn't she?

Yes, she's beautiful.

Hey, what's the matter?

I was just thinking...

Mother and father felt the same way once.

You're not suggesting we'll end up like them, are you?

I'm not sure now.

If it's a real passion, I wonder if it ever dies.

Well, I can only tell you ours never will.

And that's real enough.

And, even if I lost Louisa tomorrow, she'd still have changed my whole life.

Wait till you feel like that about a girl. Must be marvelous.

I'm so glad for you, will.


Paul, what is it?

I was always the silent one, and now you haven't a word to say to me.

That's true.

Oh, lovely.

Miriam, I don't think I should come up here anymore.

Paul, you don't mean that.

You can't mean it. We've been friends for so long.

Yes, but we didn't stop at friendship.

It's my fault, I know.

But we've got to face the truth of it.

It didn't get us anywhere else, did it?

We can't go back now, and it seems we can't go forward either.

So I think we ought to break it off.

What have they been saying at home? It's not that.

Your mother never liked me. She was always against me.

It's not that. Isn't it? You wait and see.

You wait till you meet someone you might love, want to marry.

I don't think I'll ever marry. Not while she...

She what?

No, I won't try to hurt you, because I know.

My mother, in her way, she made me what I am.

I wanted so much to love you.

Shall we see each other again?

No. Never?

Not for a while.

Not until you... Feel free.

And you? Will you ever be allowed to feel free?

I could hate you for making me love you, making me fail you.

♪ So she said to me, Charlie, if you're one of the crew ♪

♪ I reckon you're entitled to see my tattoo ♪

♪ and that's why I went sailing down that trip to Peru ♪

♪ on the night me old lady left town ♪

♪ on the night me old lady left town ♪ good, sir.

Come on, will. Give us one of your recitations.

Oh, no. Come on, will.

I've forgotten all that. That nice one... Robert Browning.

A bit of Browning. Come on. All right, then.

In deference to popular request. Silence now, for our will.

Let's see, yes. That's it. Right.

"Home thoughts from the sea", by Robert Browning.

Nobly, nobly, cape St. Vincent to the...

This one isn't supposed to be funny, dear.

Oh, will, I'm sorry. But I used to do it at school once.

And I used to say knobbly, knobbly!

I think we'd better put it to poltroon.

Where's that elderberry wine?

Here you are, Louisa.

Let's drink to our love and happiness.

Conscience is an ugly word to those who deny freedom!

But freedom is what we must have!

There are some who say if we give women their freedom, they will cease to be women.

Don't believe it.

My friends, just because women are taken out of the prison of their home and allowed to take their rightful place in the world, why should that deprive them of the beauty and grace and charm of womanhood?

My friends, we will keep house for men...

We will bear their children, but not as slaves, but as is our right, and we'll fight for it!

Any questions?

Why aren't you in church?

I could ask you the same question.

We went this morning.

Was there a sermon saying women like us won't go to heaven?

Very good, Clara.

I have a question.


Are you a free lover?

Yes. We want the four freedoms...

Speech, thought, opportunity, love.

Hear! Hear!

I am not a free lover!

The branch office of our movement has never recommended it.

The point of view you have just heard is strictly personal.

That will be all for today.

I hope I haven't given you the wrong impression.

Free love is not the basis of our movement.

If you'll read a leaflet...

I've got one already.

You're not an easy subject. So I've been told.


You've made me too beautiful.

No, you are beautiful.

That's the only important thing about me, I suppose?

Coming, Clara? Yes.

I've asked Mrs. Dawes to take a walk with me.

That is, if the branch office approves.

Next time, I'll answer the questions.

Why did you say I was going a walk with you?

Well, if you don't want to, why didn't you go off with them? I...

Shall we? Along the canal. It's just like Venice.

That man with Betty... I've seen him at Jordan's.

You've heard the girls talk. He's my husband.

No, I've only heard that you made an unhappy marriage.

We've been separated for two years.

When you married him, were you in love?

Do you still care for him?

I despise him.

And that's why you left him?

I left him because he was unfaithful.

Why do you walk so quickly?

You'll catch up with me if you're interested.

Are you, Mr. morel?

I think so, Mrs. Dawes.

What are you thinking?

I'm thinking how lovely the snowdrops look.

Don't pick them. Why not?

They look better growing. They want to be left.

I like them, and I want them.

So you take what you want, and when you're tired of it you throw it away?

What do you mean by that?

Miriam Leivers.

The girls at Jordan's know everything.

Do you think badly of me?

Why should I care?

They're so cold.

It's the snow on them.

But if you hold snow in your hand for a little, it melts.

Well, th-this is a nice time to come home.

Is father home? Upstairs and snoring.

That's where you ought to be. Have you had... Anything to eat?

I had tea in Nottingham with Clara Dawes... From Jordan's.

Clara Dawes. Now you've mentioned Clara Daw...

She's a married woman.

She's separated. That won't stop people talking.

She's a suffragette. She gets up on platforms and tells all those hypocrites what she thinks of them.

So they talk anyway.

She's awfully nice, mother.

She... she's proud. Not a bit cold, like you'd think at first.

Paul, you're not getting serious about her?

I don't know.

I've asked her out next week.

It couldn't ever come to anything, son.

You know it couldn't.

I wonder if anything ever will.



You've missed your last train.

I know.

You'd better stay the night. I'll sleep with mother.

What will she say?

She's probably gone to bed. She won't mind.

Oh. What a mess!


Who've you got here?

It's Paul morel, mother.

He's missed his train. I thought he could stay the night.

Well, if he's staying here, he won't have to mind about the work.

Sit you down. Clara, get him a glass of stout.

He looks as if he could do with one.

Haven't you ever had any more color than that?

I've got a thick skin. It doesn't show the blood through.

If you don't like me, I'll go away again. No, no, no.

Stay as you are. Light a cigarette if you want to.

Only don't set fire to all this lace.

Thank you. No need to thank me.

I'll be glad to smell a bit of smoke about the house again.

A house without men in it is like a house without a fire, to my thinking.

I like a man about, if he's only something to snap at.

Do you like lace work?

I'm a widow. I've no choice.

Must be sweated labor.

Isn't all woman's work sweated?

The men have seen to that, all right, since we've forced ourselves into the labor market.

Now, Clara, you shut up about the men.

Don't listen to her.

She's forever on this high horse of hers.

The poor animal's back so thin and starved, it'll cut her in two one of these days.

You work at Jordan's? Yes. Has Clara mentioned me to you?

I know more about you than you think.

You've been going with Miriam Leivers.

Well, yes.

I know her family well.

Nice enough girl, but a bit too much above this world to suit my fancy.

Yes, she is a bit like that.

She'll never be satisfied until she's got wings and can fly over everybody's head.

That's her mother's doing.

If religion was strong drink, they'd never be able to stand that woman up.

Why, I'd forgotten about them.

Where have they sprung from? Out of my drawer.

Bought them for Baxter, and he wouldn't wear them, would he?

Said he'd reckon to do without trousers in bed.

Couldn't bear them, them pajama things.

Well, everyone to his taste.

Yes, I dare say they'd suit you.

Well, you're tired, I expect.

No, no. It takes me hours to settle down after an evening out.

Let's hope you've got started, then. It's getting late.

Are you tired, Clara?

Not in the least bit.

Would you care to have a game of cribbage? All right.

You don't mind, do you, if we have a game of cards?

You'll please yourselves, but it's nigh on midnight.

Well, a game or so'll make us sleepy.

Would you care to play, five cards or six cards?

Doesn't matter.

All right, five. Shall I deal? Thank you.

It's my crib, so put a card down.


Twenty. Thirty.



Eight. That's two.

22, 31. Really.

I've got, 12 pairs two.

You've got 15, two, and a pair's 10.

Pair of tens is four.

It's nearly 12:00.

Turn 'em.

All right. We'll stop. Take your pajama things. Here's your candle.

Your room is above this. There's only two, so you can't go wrong.

Good night, and, hope you sleep well.

Thank you, I always do. So you ought to, at your age.

Good night. Good night.

What's keeping you, Clara?

I'm going to stay down here for a bit. I feel cold.

Well, don't be long.

Clara, I'm going up.

Well, that's the fire all right.

I think that's everything for the night.

Will you unfasten my dress?

Now then, Clara, aren't you coming up? Not yet.

Be quiet about it when you do.

I hate to be woken out of my beauty sleep.

My hand is cold.


I'm warning you, morel.

Keep away from my wife, or you're going to have me to settle with.

Take your receipt.

Get back to your work, girls. Stop this chattering.

Baxter's dangerous. Could you fight him?

Easily, with a knife or a pistol.

It's no joke. He'd kill you.

And what would you do if he did? Would you go back to him?

I have a few days off next week.

Let's go away together. We'd be by ourselves.

We could go to the sea.

There'd be nobody there in winter.

Mr. Pappleworth wants Paul to take an order.

If you're too busy, I can do it.

No, that's all right, I'll go.

Well, aren't you going to say it? Say what?

"You didn't come home last night, Paul."

You didn't come home last night, Paul.

Mother, it is serious.

It can't be, son. A woman you can't ever hope to marry.

I haven't mentioned marriage.

It's a very different thing from love.

In marriage, one has to belong, and I can't ever belong to any woman.

That's because you haven't met the right one.

I shan't find the right one as long as you live. I'll get your supper.

You're the only one I'll ever be certain about.

But I can't think of you going through your life with no one to care for you. To...

What's the matter? Nothing.

Are you not well? It's nothing!

I'm growing old, that's all.

Well, that's too bad of you.

Why can't a man always have a young mother?

I'm growing old, and you'll just have to get used to it, that's all.

This man, Baxter Dawes, comes up to me in the pub... Everyone's listenin'...

And says, "keep your son away from my wife."

How do you like that? "Keep your son away from my wife!"

It's too late.

They've gone away together on a holiday.

He told you, and you let him?

You stupid fool! Do you think I didn't try and stop him?

How dare you? You, of all people, tell me what's right and what's wrong!

All these years, you've been the fine lady, and I've been the lump of dirt. And whose fault's that?

I've never encouraged a son of mine to run after a married woman!

And what was I supposed to do? Keep him in chains?

You could have done if you'd been so minded.

You've kept him in chains all his life.

Don't you talk to me about the way I've looked after our sons...

You who never did a thing for them but drag them down!

Better for 'em if I had. You had you way with Arthur.

What happened to him?

Arthur died young, but he died a man.

And William, he's had the good sense to escape. From you.

From you with your drunken ways. No, woman, no!

You're the one he had to escape from!

He had to find a life of his own, where you wouldn't smother him as you've smothered this one. Walter...

It's your fault the lad's in this trouble now.

It's your fault! Don't try and fix the blame on me!

Why do you think he's gallivanting 'round with a Nottingham tart?

He's never had the chance to go courtin' with an ordinary decent girl.

You put a stop to anything like that.

You, with your pride and your jealousy.

Any lad of spirit can throw off a-a low mannered father.

That's not going to hold him up when he grows up.

But a mother, a mother who clings on to him and won't let him go for her own selfish sake, that's enough to ruin his life.

And that's what you've done to our Paul!

I only wanted him to be happy.

I feel so simple with you, as though there's nothing to hide.

You don't feel criminal, do you?


I was just thinking.

What? If only they knew.

Who? Everybody.

If they knew, they'd cease to understand.

What do they matter, anyway?

With only us here and these trees. What trees?

Nothing matters. These trees... these iron ones.


You like your little bit of guiltiness, I think.

I believe Eve must have enjoyed it when she went cowering out of paradise.

There's Baxter, and there's Miriam.

Miriam wanted more from me than I could ever give her.

She wouldn't leave a single hair of me free to fall out and blow away.

She'd insist on keeping it.

She wanted the soul out of my body.

So you put a limit on the claims of love?

Now you sound like you're back on your platform.

And what about you? Did you give Baxter all he wanted?

I gave him every chance.

To get near you, really near you, so you belonged to each other?

It seems to me you treated Baxter rottenly.

You wanted him to be a Lily of the valley, and when you found out he wasn't he was a cow parsley, you wouldn't have it.

You imagined him something he wasn't which is just like a woman.

She thinks she knows what a man needs, and she's going to see that he gets it.

He can be starving for what he really needs, and she'll have him sit and whistle for it, so long as she's giving him what's good for him.

And what are you doing?

I'm waiting to see what tune I shall whistle.

Do you ever want to marry me?

Do you, me?

Yes, I should like us to have children.

But you don't really want a divorce from Baxter, do you?

No, I don't think so. Why?

I don't know.

Do you feel you belong to him?

No. What, then?

I think he belongs to me.

Let's take what we've got and be grateful.

Don't I exist for you this morning?

I shouldn't think you'd need reassurance about that.

I wonder.

About me you know very little. About me.

What do you mean?

I never seem to have all of you.

It's as though you were taking someone else.


Someone just for yourself.

Is it me you want? Or just it?

Have you ever been loved more than I've loved you?

It isn't the act of loving.

It's just that you seem incapable of giving yourself.

It's as though something were holding you back.

Or somebody.

Tell me. Who?

Didn't Miriam ever tell you?

Shut up, Clara.

Why can't you come out of yourself?

Shut up! You don't, you know.

Baxter could.

Better than me? Yes.

You begin to value Baxter, now you haven't got him.

I'm only noticing that he was different from you.

Better, you said!

So. I'm not saying that you haven't given me more than Baxter ever has.

Or could ever give you.


But when I had Baxter, actually had him.

I had all of him.

But you've never given me yourself.

When I start making love to you, I just go like a leaf down the wind.

And leave me out of it.

Then it doesn't mean anything to you.

Of course it means something.

Sometimes you've carried me away...

Right away.

But... don't "but" me!

Good night. Good night.

Morel! You gonna fight? Or take it lying down?

Let me pass.


I'm up here.

Mother, are you ill?

I'm giving myself a bit of a treat.

Paul, what have you done to your face?

I... I just had a fall off my bicycle. Oh.

I've never known you to be in bed at this time. It's early. Tell me the truth.

I'm a bit tired, that's all. I've been to Nottingham.

To Nottingham. All by yourself?

Well, when you're my age, it's just as well to see a doctor once in a while.

Paul, you have hurt yourself. Oh, mother, it's... it's nothing.

What did the doctor say? I've got to take things quietly.

And he's given me a bottle of medicine.

Have, you been happy, son?

Yes, mother. Well, you'll be wanting your supper.

Oh, don't you dare move. I can look after myself.

Have you eaten tonight? I've had all I want.

Now, there's some eggs in the larder...

I'll find something. I'll find something.

Now are... you are telling me the truth?

There's nothing else to tell.

Now, go and wash that face before it gets septic.

Don't you worry about me.

More tea? No.

Miss Dawes.

There's a message for you. Oh, thank you.

Mrs. Dawes.

It's Baxter. He's been hurt.

I must go to him.

He's alone. There's no one to look after him.


Goodbye, Clara.


It is Baxter, isn't it? All the time.

Yes. You see how weak I am?

I need to be loved too.

No, Paul.

Let's say good bye, before we start accusing each other and losing everything we've ever had.

We'll never lose it. We've paid for it.

I beg your pardon, I'm sure.

Betty, I have to go out now.

Please take charge.

It'll be a pleasure.

Oh, have I come to the wrong house?

Your wife's poorly. She's had another of them turns.

Oh? Fainting fit?

I reckon it's worse than that. The doctor's up there now.

Is that for me?

Yes. She was anxious about your tea.

I like my potatoes cut up.

You'll take 'em as you get 'em.

Here he comes now.

Good evening, morel. Is she bad?

I'm afraid it's rather serious. Heart attack, you know.

May have another. We've got to keep her very quiet.

I'd best go up. Can you stay the night with her?

I'll go and get my man his tea when the boy comes home, and I'll be right back.

Any change, send the lad for me at once.

It'll be touch and go if she has another attack.

Well, you're a fine one.

How do I find thee, lass?

I'm middling. Just middling.

Is she looking after you all right?


She don't cut up the potatoes!

You'll have to make allowances.


Is that Paul home? He'll be coming up.

Lass, I've... I've said some hard things in my time.

I-I didn't mean 'em, you know that.

We don't want to think about those things now.

Mother. Now, now, don't fret.

Why didn't you tell me? Tell you what?

About these attacks. I met doctor ansell outside.

Oh, my pigeon, why didn't you tell me?

There's no sense in fussing.

We're going to get you better.

Father and I can look after ourselves.

And we'll see that you get a nice long rest.

The cold weather will soon be over, once we have the spring sunshine.

I wish it was spring now.

I'd like to see the daffodils.

Oh, you shall. I promise you.

You... you go, son.

I'd like to get some sleep. Yes. You sleep.

Paul. Yes, mother?

I don't want your father to see me anymore.

I want to think of the happy times when he was brave and laughing.

When he comes in now, I only think of the other things, the hateful things.

And I can't bear to look at him.

Do you think that's hard of me?

Perhaps when you're a little better.

No. I won't be better.

We mustn't pretend anymore, son.

It'll only make us afraid of each other.

Good night. Good night, my love.

Paul, come quick!


Look, mother. Mother?

I've done your daffodils. Mother, look.

No! Don't!


I've done your daffodils.


How is she, lad?

Didn't you notice the curtains were drawn?

When did she go?

You'd only just left.

Don't you want to see her? No.

She didn't want me with her anymore.

Well, you can go to London now, son.

You still want to go there, don't you?

I don't know what I want.

At the moment, I feel I want to go after her.

Now, don't you let her down.

Your mother believed in me once, but...

Well, I don't know. I suppose I let things slide.

You're the one to set things right again.

How, father?

By not letting things slide, as I did.

If only you could settle your life without all this... searching.

I reckon it'll be much better for you.

Don't you mean easier?

That's Miriam's doctrine for life...

Ease of soul and physical comfort. And I despise it.

You do, do you? Well, I can't think why.

All this cleverness of yours, this taking your life into your own hands, it don't seem to have brought thee much happiness, happiness. If only you could meet some good woman who could make you happy.

Damn your happiness.

So long as life is full, that's all I've ever wanted.

And now it's empty because she's dead.

Oh, she's dead.

I know. I know. So is Arthur.

And the dead don't come back, but it doesn't mean you can let them down, does it?

They can still look on, can't they? Or so we're told.

Maybe they can help us sometimes.

Let's see if that woman's got our grub for us.


Hello, Miriam.

I heard, Paul. I'm so sorry.

All those years of bitterness and struggle.

And illness and death.

I don't know what it was all for.

For you. You're alive.

Why should I live? For her.

You've got to go on living for her sake.

Go on with your painting.

She wanted that. Painting's not living.

Then be happy just to live.

We should all give ourselves that chance.

I'm taking mine tomorrow.

Are you going away?

I'm going to train to be a teacher in London.

Do you plan to go there now?

Yes, I suppose so.

Have you broken off with Clara Dawes?

Well, she's broken off with me.

She knew it wouldn't last.

You know, I think we should be married.


If only to keep you from wasting yourself.

You might get ill. Anything might happen, and I'd never know.

Would knowing prevent it?

At least I could stop you from being a prey to women like Clara.

You'd want nothing for yourself?

Dear, lovely Miriam.

I don't think marriage would be any good.

I only think of you.

I know you do.

You want to put me in your pocket, and I should die there, smothered.

We belong to each other.

You said that yourself once.

I was wrong.

I did belong to my mother. But now she's dead, and I don't want her to live again in you.

Not even in you, Miriam.

I'm sure I'll never find anyone as good as you...

Or any love as good as yours, but I don't want to find it, because I want to be free.

I don't ever want to belong to anyone again. Never anymore.

And, perhaps, I'll understand at last what it means to live.

Good bye.