Sweet Home Alabama (2002) Script

Come on, Jake, slow down.

Hurry up.

Melanie!

We gotta get home or Mom's gonna kill me.

Wow, did you see that?

1,001 , 1,002. . .

Answer the question! No!

No, you won't answer, or you won't marry me?

Jake Perry, I'm ten years old. I got too much to live for.

Not that way, you don't. Come on!

Wow! Cool.

It's hot. Don't touch it.

We'll be safe here.

Says who?

Everybody.

Lightning never strikes the same place twice.

Why would you want to marry me, anyhow?

So I can kiss you any time I want.


Oh, my God.

Hi.

That accent of yours is a lot thicker when you're dreaming.

How come y'all let me sleep?

Calm down. It was five minutes. What did I say?

We're all getting big raises when you become somebody.

Did they kill Badgley Mischka.

Laugh now, tomorrow it could be us.

Not us, you. I just make the coffee.

Thank you.

Thanks for the long night. I'll see you at the show.

See you later. Get some rest.


Andrew.

Honey, there's a rose for every moment I thought of you last night.

You must be exhausted. Knock 'em dead.

I'll see you at the show. It's gonna be great. I love you.

I can't wait to see you. Goodbye.

OK, people we are officially late!

Melanie! Yes?

This top is supposed to be neon aubergine but it's all wrong!

OK, don't panic. That's my job. Put her on after Anouk.

The light cue is yellow. She'll look eggplant.

Pan, it's wrong because it's on backwards.

Miss Dixie, I'm scared of you!

Frederick, why are you here? You're the competition.

Competition? Please! Our designs are pearls.

Nothing comes between me and my protegee.

This is, after all, all about me.

I love this. Stella McCartney's gonna kill herself.

Why do I feel like I'm in Times Square, naked?

You'll be fine. Seven years ago, you were a debutante off the plantation.

Now you're my steel magnolia, with her very own show.

Get out before you make me cry.

Bonne chance.

Secretary Hennings, do you have a moment?

Please tell me he has a flaw somewhere.

He asked me to go to Ireland for Christmas.

He's going to ask you a lot more than that.

You think so?

It's time, let's do this. Alright, we got to go.

Places, everyone.

Let's go. Line up. OK, don't smile. No smiles, just smirks.

Wait.

OK, go.

Honey!

Congratulations. You're amazing.

The flowers were insane. I want this day to be perfect.

God, what if they hate me? Critics hate themselves.

Easy for you to say. I don't have thick Hennings skin.

No, you don't. And that is what I love about you.

I'm sorry. I have a meeting. You enjoy it and I'll see you later.

We've got that thing tonight at Lincoln Center.

What thing? Fundraiser thing.

Right. The thing. With your mother. That's tonight.

I'm afraid so. OK.

I am so proud of you.

Thank you. OK.

I love you. I love you, too. Congratulations.

His meeting's running late. He told me to take you inside.

Where are we?

I'm so tired, Jimmy. Yeah.

I've just had it. He shouldn't be too long.

Miss Carmichael, won't you come in?

So, have you made a decision?

About what? Ireland.

Ireland, honey? That's four months from now.

I was thinking maybe. . .

. ..2-300 guests, tops.

For Christmas? Are you on some sort of medication?

What's going on? Where are we?


Oh, my God!

Melanie Carmichael, will you marry me?

Are you sure? I mean, are you really sure?

If you're not, we can just go back to the car.

It's only been eight months. I never do anything rash.

I never ask a question I don't know the answer to.

So at the risk of being rejected twice, I'm gonna ask you again.

Will you marry me?

Yes.

Pick one.

Mayor, just one shot. Over here, Mayor.

Where is he? Running late.

Thanks to that Carbuncle girl.

Carmichael, designer, Southern. Whatever.

Your Honour, how do you answer those who oppose your street-improvement project?

I suggest they drive through Brooklyn.

Maybe they'll disappear in a pothole.

Sources say your son's engaged to Melanie Carmichael.

Do you have a comment?

Trust me if my son were engaged, I'd have a comment.

I thought you were tired. Jimmy, excuse us.

I planned this for weeks. This thing tonight is perfect.

I can't wait to see my mother's face.

Come on, let's call your parents. No!

I mean, not right this second.

What I mean is, would you mind if we kept this to ourselves for a few days?

Mel, it'll come out sooner or later.

I know but I haven't seen my folks in about seven years.

I just feel like I should probably tell them in person.

Of course.

And I think I should do it alone.

Mel, I'll have to meet them eventually.

I know. And they will love you. Eventually.

Is it because I'm a Yankee? Well, that, and a Democrat.

OK. Mum's the word.

No one will know. Thank you.

Secretary Hennings.

Hello.

Have you told your mother you're engaged?

Sorry we're late.

That lipstick doesn't suit you. What kept you?

None of your business. What's going on?

Tom, always a pleasure. Good to see you.

Melanie, darling. So good to see you.

Look at you, the belle of the ball.

I hear your new line is good.

Oh, yeah. Thanks.

Andrew. Yes?

Melanie is wearing a skating rink on an important finger.

I'd like to keep this. . . Oh, my God!

You're engaged?

. .quiet.

I'm your first New York friend and I read about it with 1 2 million other people.

Sorry. She grabbed my hand. What could I do?

I know. We read about it. Did you cry?

Wouldn't you?

One man for the rest of my life? I'd bawl. Come and meet us.

I can't. I'm in Alabama.

Oh, my God.

Yeah.


He's loud, but he don't bite. Shut up, hound Lie down.

Come on, stay.

How can I help you?

Well, you can get your stubborn ass down here and give me a divorce.

Jake, I mean it. The joke's over.

Let's finish this. I've got a plane to catch.

You're shitting me, right?

I never understood that expression, but no, I'm not shitting you.

Look, it's even got these idiot-proof tabs to make it easy.

One copy for me, one for you, one for the lawyers.

What? Speak.

You show up here after seven years without so much as a, "Hey, there, Jake. Remember me, your wife?"

Or, "Hi, honey. Looking good. How's the family?"

You expect me to say you look good?

Did the Piggly Wiggly run out of soap?

They laugh at that up north, or wherever you've been?

You knew where I was. And don't pretend you missed me.

I missed you. But at this range, my aim is bound to improve.

Is that a threat?

I've got a lawyer charges $350 an hour.

He billed me every time you sent these back.

I'm glad you got the message.

Shut up, Bear! Shut up, Bryant!

What happened to Bear?

He died. You weren't here.

What are you doing?

Leaving. You should recognise the gesture.

Could we try to keep this as civilised as possible?

Please sign these so I can go home.

What do you know from home?

I bet your folks don't know you're here.

That's my business.

Honey, those people are the only family you got.

Don't "honey" me, honey!

Get your butt back in that car, drive over and see 'em, then maybe we'll talk.

Jake!

You dumb, stubborn, redneck hick!

You won't sign these cos I want you to!

Wrong! I ain't signing cos you've turned into some hoity-toity Yankee bitch and I'd like nothing better than to piss you off!

What are you doing with Mo SlideI's plane?

That's my business! Fine!

Fine!

Divorce, my ass.

Hey, genius.

When you lock somebody out, make sure they don't know where the spare key is.

Well, see, that's the thing about hide-a-keys.

It'd be nice if your wife told you where it was.

I'm not your wife, Jake.

I'm just the first girl that climbed in the back of your truck.

But you're right.

I have changed. I don't even know that girl any more.

Well, then, allow me to remind you.

"Born into one of the wealthiest families of Greenville, Alabama, her daddy's in cotton and all that that implies."

There is no listing for an Earl Carmichael in Greenville.

Her high school?

No record of Melanie Carmichael attending, ever.

Jesus! Whatever happened to responsible journalism?

Something's wrong here. Why would my son do this to me?

Maybe he loves her?

Please! This is classic rebound.

He's hurt from breaking up with. . . Who was it?

Whitney Trusdale, lawyer, San Francisco.

Yeah. There was a match made in heaven.

Society, political family, California.

All those electoral votes.

Get Andrew on the phone.

We only have a small window for the Secretary of Housing.

Hold your questions until after the presentation.

See the look on my Mom's face? I thought her head would explode.

What'd she say?

I should date women like Mel, not marry them.

That's harsh. That's Mom.

Thank you. Thanks a lot.

We hope to have the Bronx Children's Hospital open. . .

Speak of the devil. Hello.

So, have you lovebirds set a date?

I plead the Fifth.

Try to keep your secrets, I dare you.

You're in a better mood.

My approval rating went up two points.

The public likes to know I'm a mother.

Always running for office. I'm only thinking of you. Say...

Do you have the Carmichaels' number down there in Greenville?

I thought I should introduce myself.

I'd like to meet them first.

The press will be all over this. Take it from me.

Happy couples don't sell.

If there are any skeletons in her closet, we need to know about them.

You make clothes, right?

I design them. There's a big difference.

You design anything with stripes?

You called the sheriff?

You know that old bastard hates me.

For good reason.

Well, hell's bells! If it ain't Felony Melanie.

Wade?

Hot damn, girl, do we miss you around here.

I saw poor Fuzz the other day.

You had to bring that up. So, you're the Sheriff?

I get to frisk pretty things like you and get paid for it.

Try and be more professional. We got a crime suspect here.

You can't break into people's houses.

I didn't break in. I used a key. My key.

It still ain't your house. I'll have to escort you out.

Use the cuffs.

If you get him to sign these, you can run me out of town.

That's not your concern. What do we got here?

A bill of divorcement?

You said you took care of this. I thought I had.

Obviously not.

If you are still married, it's her house too.

This ain't nothing but a domestic dispute.

He didn't hit you, did he?

If he did, I'll take him in.

We take that stuff pretty serious nowadays.

No, Wade. Jake's never hit me.

You know what?

Every childhood memory I have has you two in it.

Including the night I lit my ass on fire.

Wade, Memory Lane is closed.

You two got a whole lot of catching up to do. I'll leave you to it.

I set you up with your wife. Sign the papers!

I can't do anything. The law is the law.

She has done nothing wrong.

So shoplifting steaks at Winn-Dixie is OK?

You know I took them back!

That vandalism at the stockyard? Totally her.

Like I could tip a cow by myself.

Wade, isn't there some outstanding warrant for whoever dumped your momma's tractor in the fish pond?

I have ten of these, then it's gone.

So if you are loving this monster... How many?

Eight? We have eight only?

If I could say that in Italian, I would.

9: 1 5? Honestly! Who could be calling at this hour?

Hello? Hello?

Hey, Momma.

Melanie, is that you? It's so late. Are you alright?

I ...

I thought I'd surprise you.

This certainly is a surprise, hearing from you, you being such a busy girl an' all.

I call people while I'm doing the dishes or shelling peas.

Oprah calls it multitasking. Momma, the call isn't the surprise. I'm in town.

Lord love a duck!

My baby girl has finally come home. Earl, she's in town.

If you're gonna repeat everything she says, get off my chair.

Momma... I'm just sitting here.

What happened to the sound?

I turned it down to hear the phone ring.

Are you clairvoyant now?

It was so loud, I couldn't hear myself think.

I heard it at Joe and Merlene's house.

Hello? I only get three minutes.

You didn't need to call. Just come on by.

Well, that's the thing. I was hoping Daddy could come and get me.

So, what put you in jail this time?

Jake and his big fat mouth. It was just a misunderstanding.

Like that wedding I paid for.

I would hardly call that a wedding.

The boy was nervous.

He was still drunk from the night before.

Can you blame him? Yes, I can!

I went to the reception with puke down my dress while he slept it off in the Travelodge.

You're still siding with that... I'm not siding with anybody.

The boy's changed. Can we not talk about Jake?

I know he's the son you never had but I'm your daughter.

Maybe you want to know what's new with me.

OK. Shoot.

I met somebody.

And he's quite a catch.

He's really a great guy.

And I'm happy. Really.

Come to Momma, sugar.

Hey, Momma.

Good land of the living, you are skin and bones.

Don't I get a smile? I know you got one in there.

Let's not let all the bought air out.

Well, are you hungry?

You want me to reheat some chicken fried steak?

No, I'm fine. Sweetie, you look tired Are you tired? Maybe it's the way you're wearing your hair now.

You've done a lot with the place.

Lord, listen to that accent.

Sit in my good chair. Your momma got me this Christmas before last.

When you were supposed to visit me?

I told you time and time again, it just didn't suit.

Let me get you those tickets.

Sit down in it. Sit down.

Now watch this.

I mean, isn't that quite the deal?

There are hardly words. How do I get out?

Oh, my God!

Jake tell you he's thinking of getting one?

I see your priorities. Jake, jail and then home.

It was just unfinished business.

Jake's doing alright. Boy's going places.

Once upon a time you were going places too.

Here are your tickets.

These were a gift. I'd rather you guys just use them.

I don't understand how you visit every stupid battlefield in the US but you can't manage to visit your daughter.

The door swings both ways.

Don't get me started on things I don't understand.

Here we go.

You wanted me to get away and be somebody.

You shoved me in beauty pageants.

I'm just saying, is all. What are you trying to say?

Tell me what I can do to make you happy.

Just make yourself happy. Done. We're there, alright?

I've made something of myself. I have a career.

People want to be me.

And somebody loves me and I love him.

Pearl, get us some of that baloney cake out of the icebox.

Your momma's a complex woman.

I'm going to bed.

Goodnight, darling.

You know nothing about her.

Are you even sure who she is?

I love her, Mom.

That's nice. But be careful. You and I are different.

Not better, not worse, just different.

We're in public life to serve, so we have to set good examples.

Must you control everything?

Tell her I reserved the Plaza for the second weekend in June.

We were thinking Christmas in Ireland.

I won't let some girl talk you into getting married. . .

She is not "some girl". She's my fiancée, for Christ's sake.

You are just like your father.

One minute, you're brilliant, controlled, steadfast.

The next, you're throwing it away on some piece of ass.

Those are your issues, Mother, not mine.

OK.

Hold on.

You know what?

How long does a contested divorce take?

1 8 months?

Mr. Buford, I don't have 1 8 months. I don't have 1 8 days.

That's just not going to work for me.

Yeah. Yes.

Don't see the likes of you round these here parts.

Mr. Buford. . .

You look like sex on a stick.

I have to call you back.

Listen, why don't you just kiss my.. .

. .ass! Oh, my God.

Get in the truck cos I don't do that sort of thing on the street.

Your momma raised you right.

What is that, Calvin Klein? Very nice.

Very good. I better back off.

I don't want to get you in trouble with the little lady.

There is a little lady?

I can't afford me, much less some high-maintenance babe.

What about Cindy? You were hot and heavy in high school.

She's a women's softball coach in Nashville.

That explains some questions I had about a game of post office we played.

No!

I guess we all have our secrets, Bobby Ray.

Yeah, we sure do.

But I read about yours on the internet.

What?

I know about the cocks in your henhouse.

God! Bobby Ray! You sure know how to make a girl blush.

I gotta get back. Are you in town for a while?

I hope not. I'm just hitting the bank.

I better scram. Very funny.

It was good to see you. Good to see you, too. Bye.

Hi, Eugene.

How's your leg?

It don't give me too much trouble, Miss Melanie.

Dorothea, I'm going to take my lunch.

Look what the cat dragged in.

Dorothea? My God, you've. . .

. .lost 1 1 0lbs, I know.

Well, congratulations.

Thanks.

You don't have an ATM.

Them things. Russ won't get one because you lose personal contact with customers.

Yes. That would be tragic.

Wade said you and Jake had quite the reunion.

But that's just pillow talk.

Are you and Wade...? Going on three years.

It ain't Tiffany's. But then you can't believe everything on TV.

I need a withdrawal from my. . .

. .joint account? My what?

Your joint account. With Jake.

From what I hear, y'all are still married.

Why, yes.

Yes, we are.


Hi, honey.

Looking good. How's the family?

Cut the shit. Where's my stuff?

What kind of wife doesn't pick up after her husband?

The kind that don't live here.

I'm going to ask you one last time. Where is the hide-a-key?

I had the sweetest chat with Wade's mom about her tractor.

Nice to see you got your accent back.

I stumbled across a few things today.

Holy shit! What happened to the stove?

And where are them magnets I had over here?

What the hell is this? Chick food?

Lite beer. Less calories.

I tried to get a new bed but have you been to the Sit 'n Sleep lately?

I'll have to order something from New York.

Whatever blows your dress up, darlin'.

Go ahead and spend your money.

But, darlin', I thought you said we should think of it as our money.

Just a guess but I think the words

"joint chequing" are flashing in your head right now.

How much did you take? All of it.

Son of a bitch!

You want a wife, you got a wife!

Why do you have all that cash? Why don't you invest it?

If you don't get out. . .

Sign the papers and I'll give it back.

Fine! Fine.

Give me the pen.

Why do you have all that cash? Give me the pen.

When did you quit the tyre factory? Are you doing anything illegal?

Maybe I am. So? I don't ask about your boyfriend.

Keep your nose out of my life. Deal?

Who told you?

Honey, just cos I talk slow doesn't mean I'm stupid.

Look, Jake. . .

Nobody finds their soul mate when they're ten years old.

Yeah, I guess.

I mean, where's the fun in that, right?

I can't believe you kept this all these years.

Most people don't know lightning does that to sand.

Mel, you know what?

I just remembered I got myself a hot date.

Mind if my lawyer looks at these?

What? Hell.

I'm just a simple country boy.

There's words in there I can't even pronounce.

You might be taking me to the cleaner's.

The cleaner's? You? What'd this set you back?

More than you make in a month. Sign the damn papers!

Nah, but thanks for stopping by.


I love you, I love you, I love you. Are you sitting down?

Why? Bad news?

I picked up New York magazine. And I quote, "That cool breath of fresh air at Fashion Week was the soon-to-be household name of Melanie Carmichael."

"Fashion insiders have labeled her the next big one."

Oh, my God! The next big one?

God, honey, I needed that almost as much as I need you.

What is that noise?

The sound of my past. Have fun.

OK, bye.

Batten down the hatches, boys!

Trouble just walked in, disguised as my favourite daughter-in-law.

Drive that pretty face over here and give me a hug.

Soon to be ex-daughter-in-law.

Who's the lucky guy? His name is Andrew.

He's in politics. He's got my vote.

Good to see you, baby girl.

Give this lady whatever she wants! I'll catch up with you later.

I'll have a Grey Goose martini, two olives, dirty.

Oh, my God! Melanie!

Lurlynn? Yes! Oh, my God!

Look at you, all fancy, like you stepped out of a magazine.

Well, thank you. Look at you.

You have a baby. In a bar.

Hell, I got three more at home.

This one's still on the tit, so I can cart him anywhere.

Right.

I almost bought that exact same top the other day.

But Clinton would kill me if I spent 30 bucks on a sweater thing.

That Jaclyn Smith knows what she's doing.

Actually, it's mine. Bergdorf just picked it up.

I design clothes now.

Now that you mention it, I'm pretty sure I heard that.

So, do you know Jaclyn Smith?

Mind if I join you?

Actually, we do. You must be Jake's hot date.

I'm Starr.

I'm Melanie, Jake's snotty Yankee bitch wife, whom he won't divorce, even though I'm engaged.

Hot dog, Jake, look at the size of that thing!

Honey, why don't you get us a couple of drinks?

OK.

Is that a martini?

Not me and her "us", you and I "us".

Why do you make me be mean to you?

Do you want to be humiliated in front of all your friends?

Come on, Mel. We were your friends too.

Well, lookee, lookee, lookee. Hot damn!

Well, well, well. If it isn't the two groomsmen of the apocalypse.

Hey, Eldon. Are you hungry?

I'm starving, Clinton.

No, don't you dare!

I could use a Melanie sandwich!

Just like old times. Get your hands off me!

No! Not like old times, alright? Times have changed.

No more Melanie sandwich, no more Melanie taco, and no more Melanie corndog.

Sure. We're just playing.

Guys, let's play some pool.

You can't find a cue, just pull the one shoved up her ass.

I can't believe you still wear that same stupid hat.

Well, I just about got it broken in.

Now, sit your bony ass down and watch me teach Jake here how to lose at pool.

That's the thing.

I'm not really a watch-and-see kind of girl, am I, Jake?

Come on, Bobby Ray, you got it.

Bobby Ray. . .

Don't blow this one, OK? Alright, baby?

You can take the girl out of the honky tonk but you can't take the honky tonk out of the girl.

So, Jake are you going to divorce this girl or what?

Well, she waited seven years.

A couple more days won't kill her. Unfortunately.

Like it'll make a difference. You never know.

You might be interested to know that Jake...

Let her think what she wants.

She made up her mind about me a long time ago.

Some things never change.

Like Eldon here.

He never could get his balls in the right pocket.

OK, Jake. It's you and Mel.

Clutch time. Just like state playoffs.

We're down by six. Seven seconds to go.

We need that beautiful 52-yard bomb!

Remember that, Mel? How could I forget?

That was the night Jake got me pregnant.

Why don't you just go public with that shit?

Come on. It's not like anybody can keep a secret here.

Except for Bobby Ray. Now, what did I ever do to you?

You never did anything to me, darling. Or any other girl in town.

Melanie, what is wrong with you?

What do you mean? She's just unhappy.

I would be too if Women's Wear Daily called me "less than mediocre".

Why don't you go to a gay bar?

Now what would B Ray do in a gay bar?

Well. . .

I've had enough fun for one night.

Come on, I was just kidding.

Stella! How about another round of drinks for my friends here?

Honey, you've had enough.

You know what? I think you're right.

I have had enough.

I mean, how do you people live like this?

That's it, that's it.

Did you know there's a world out there that has nothing to do with chitlins and children or beer?

I liked her better when she was crazy.

Jake.

Why do you treat them like something you stepped in?

You asked for it! I asked for it?

You show up, steal my money then insult my friends, acting like you're better than them!

I am better than them! And you stole my pen.

That's all that matters to you. Thank you.

The money, the labels, the shoes. You're pathetic!

Like you're going places. I am, as soon as I get my keys.

No, you don't. Give me my purse!

You want to kill yourself, you do it somewhere else. There.

At least I'm doing something. So what if you can't play football?

Get a new dream. I did. Get in the truck now.

Alright!

I guess the date's over?

Do me a favour. Follow us home.

Evening, Earl.

Evening, Jake.

Pearl. Jake.


Listen, Pearl, go easy on her. We don't want another seven years.

We were wondering when we'd see you.

Christ Almighty, Daddy, how will I explain you in New York City?

History's history. No use sweeping it under the rug.

Wish me luck. Go get them Yankees.

People need a passport to come down here.

Bryant, where is he?

Come here. Come on.

Come on. Bryant, come on.

What's she doing here?

I thought you'd be gone.

I put the money back.

Thanks. Saves me from bouncing a lot of cheques.

Can he swim?

Doesn't look like it.

I like what you did, though.

To the house. Should help it sell quicker.

Are you moving?

Well, I've been spending a lot of my time in Tuscaloosa, so...

How deep is that water? About eight feet.

Look, Mel, I signed your papers.

I never meant to hurt you or anybody else for that matter.

I just came out here to say thank you.

You might want to move out of the way.

You can't just leave!

Sure I can.

You want to come? Where are you going?

I want to show you something.

I can't. Can't or won't?

Both.

The girl I knew used to be fearless.

The girl you knew didn't have a life.

You better get on with it then. Come on, Bryant.

Come on, boy, get in here.

Do you know Bobby Ray Bailey's address?

81 3 Lafayette.

You don't remember me.

I remember you just fine. You used to steal catfish from my pond.

Yes, sir. I did that.

I'm sorry.

On weekends, Bobby Ray goes to the Carmichael plantation.

Visits with Colonel Murphy, it being tourist season.

Thank you.

Yes? Hi. I'm Melanie Carmi. . .

Melanie Smooter.

I'm here to see Bobby Ray.

If he's alive, he's out back. Come on.

They're out here somewhere. Watch your step.

Bobby Ray?

Melanie? Don't move!

Hot damn!

Hold your fire, sir.

We weren't aiming for you but I doubt I'd have gone to your funeral.

I guess I wouldn't blame you.

I'd forgotten how beautiful this place was.

It doesn't take much to forget things, does it?

Bobby Ray, it's not like that. I'll tell you what it's not like.

It's not like Jake's the only one you run out on.

I'm so sorry I outed you.

I guess I figured if I was pointing at you then.. .

. .nobody would see through me.

Bobby Ray!

I can't find the fuse!

I should go before he kills himself.

Bye.

Afternoon.

Can I help you?

Barry Lowenstein, New York Post.

Oh, boy. Am I glad to see you.

I'll tell you, it's definitely another world down here.

Did you say the Post? Yes.

I was hoping to interview you and your family.

Maybe a few pictures, if you don't mind.

No. I mean, yes, I do. Mind. They're not here.

This is just as you described it.

It must have been amazing growing up here.

Like a fantasy.

Could I take a quick look inside? I'm on my way out.

I'll come back then. OK, but just a peek.

This is it. Home, sweet home.

How old is this place?

It was built by my great-great-great-grandfather.

Charles Carmichael, in 1 853.

Boy. I bet you slid down this bannister a time or two.

And over here, we have the...

. .kitchen. But who hasn't seen one of those? Over here.

This is my favourite room.

It was part of the... Underground Railroad.

Why are we whispering?

The whole place is haunted.

By ghosts of...

. .Civil War soldiers.

Dang Confederate buttons!

No wonder we lost the war.

Was that one of them?

Melanie?

What are you doing in the closet? Barry Lowenstein, New York Post.

Miss Carmichael was showing me around the plantation.

Mr Lowenstein is writing a piece on the family, since I'm marrying the mayor's son and all.

I had no idea. Isn't that something?

Yeah.

A plantation by any other name is just a farm.

But it does roll off the tongue a little sweeter.

Miss Melanie forgot her manners. I'm Bobby Ray.

Her cousin.

Charmed.

The Yankees tried to destroy our metal-forming capabilities by placing barrels of powder underneath the anvils.

All they managed to do was blow 'em sky-high for a few seconds.

In honour of that act of stupidity, we recreate it for the tourists.

What the hell was that?

Grandpa!

This here's Barry. He's doing an article on Melanie's wedding.

Never heard of her!

Thanks!

Well, aren't you just a big fat liar?

Bobby Ray! Oh, go back to New York.


I'm sorry about what I said.

Really sorry. Oh, well.. . Forget it.

OK, y'all. You need to eat and be quiet. We're gonna have us a visit.

You know, he went up there.

Who? Jake? When?

About a year after you left.

He don't know I know. But Clinton let it slip once.

Jake was in New York? He'd never seen anything like it.

He realised straight off he'd need more than an apology to win you back.

He needed to conquer the world first. He's been trying ever since.

That's why he kept sending the papers back.

Yeah.

It's funny how things don't work out.

It's funny how they do.


Look who I found by the parking lot, hesitant to join us.

Anybody think of anything in here that might bother Bobby Ray?

Clinton's breath?

You still the same Bobby Ray? Last time I checked, yeah.

Well, then, let me buy you a drink.

You're really not my type.

Honey, you drink that from the top.

I'm just looking to see who makes this Deep South Glass.

I wonder if you can get it in New York. It's beautiful.

Jake!

Mel wants to know where she can find some of that snooty-falooty glass.

Why ask me? I don't know.

Maybe because you're. . .

You're all spiffed up and all.

Am I missing something?

Let's show some respect, folks.

Jake, when was the last time you pushed me around the dance floor?

Clinton has got two left feet.

Well, Miss Taylor, I'd be honoured. Let's do it.

Come on, Mel! Get out here!

Aren't you the Lord of the Dance?

I ain't as clumsy as I look. She just can't keep time.

You might have to prove that to me.

He's pretty good. It might be you.

The hell you say! Let me at him.

Look at them two, welded together.

Why do they fight it?

Maybe we could just talk.


Come on. Let's go to the roadhouse.

Nah.

Let's drive to Fairview and bowl a few frames.

I don't think so. Want to go arrest somebody?

I know this great place where.. . No!

Y'all, I think I'm gonna call it a night.


Hey there, boy.

Sorry it took me so long.

I'd have come sooner if I'd known you were sick.

Actually, that's probably not true.

I've been pretty selfish lately.

Dogs don't know anything about that, do they, though?

You were always like a big old pillow.

When everything went pear-shaped...

. .you never left my side.

And then I just left you.

I bet you sat there wondering what you'd done wrong.

I told him it was my fault.

Quit being so nice. It's the truth.

Why does it have to be so complicated?

What? The truth.

Life.

This.

He was one hell of a good dog.

Yeah.

You looked like you were having fun tonight.

I'm happy in New York, Jake.

But then I come down here and this fits too.

Since when does it have to be one or the other?

You can have roots and wings, Mel.

Maybe I can just fly south for the winter.

Look.

What? There. Can you see 'em?

Lightning bugs. Only you.

You know, I still go out there sometimes.

I see those big thunderheads rolling in.. .

It's like a religion.

I had a dream about it the other night.

Ever wonder what would have happened if we hadn't got pregnant?

Jake... Let me get this out before I can't.

I thought that baby would be an adventure.

It took me a while to realise it would have been your only adventure.

I just guess Mother Nature knew better.

I was so ashamed.

Cos I felt...

. .relieved.

And all of a sudden, I just needed a different life.

And you've done real well for yourself.

I'm proud of you, Mel.

I'm just sorry I never danced with you at our wedding.

I'm sure this next one will go better for you.

Jake, I can't do this.

I know.


Go home.

I'm just saying, is all. I saw you two looking at each other.

Momma, I can't help how Jake feels about me. He's done nothing wrong.

He's done nothing right either. Why are we having this argument?

I'm leaving. I'm marrying another man.

That's right, young lady. You get a second chance, so don't mess it up.

For whom? For me or for you? Don't sass me, OK?

Don't you dare. I have put up with an awful lot from you over the years.

What? Like me quitting your precious pageants?

I didn't want you to end up like me! Damn it!

You need to stay far away from here. That boy is quicksand.

What's so wrong with being you, Momma?

I just think that you deserve better, that's all.

I know you do.

You always have.

I'll see you in New York, alright?

You'll like it.

I promise.

Don't forget to say goodbye to your daddy.

Daddy?

Who you looking for, darling?

Earl Smooter.

Fifth Regiment?

Anybody seen Earl Smooter?

He's about to surrender!

Thank you!

After you.

Good afternoon.

How are you? Good, thanks. Yourself?

No complaints.

This is a beautiful house. Sure.

You here to see Bobby Ray?

Actually, I'm hoping to surprise Melanie.

Melanie? My fiancee.

You got the wrong house, don't you?

This is the Carmichael place, isn't it?

Are we talking about the same girl?

Melanie Smooter? Melanie Carmichael.

Well, that explains it.

It sure does.

Andrew Hennings.

Jake Perry. Nice meeting you, Jake.

Hey, Jake.

What's going on?

Oh, you know. Just talking to Mel's fiance here.

Wondering if you might know where she is.

Andrew Hennings. You must be...

I'm Bobby Ray, her. . . cousin?

I see you've met Jake, her. . . Her other cousin.

Family. It's great to meet you both.

Melanie said something about visiting her daddy up at the battlefield.

Battlefield?

In the South, the minute the Confederacy died, it became immortal.

Come on. I'll give you a ride up there.

That's great, thank you. Nice meeting you.

So, who's. . . Melanie Snooter?

Local hero round here. Why's that?

She blew up the bank. And that made her a hero?

Well, notorious, anyway. She was ten.

Fortunately, nobody was hurt, except maybe the cat.

What cat?

The one with the dynamite on its back.

She blew up a cat? He was scheduled to die anyway.

From dynamite? The vet said it had cancer.

So Eldon thought it'd be put in a chamber that sucks their lungs out.

Mel couldn't bear the thought of that.

She wanted something more humane.

Yeah, sure.

They were blasting by the new highway, so we took ol' Fuzz up there, taped him up.

We used about 30 feet of fuse, just to be safe.

Said our prayers and ran like hell. Of course.

So there we were, sitting in Virgie's diner, feeling pretty blue, when Mel sees that cat trotting down the road, searching for Eldon.

No shit.

We'd have caught him but once that fuse hit his tail, he took off like a shot.

And into the bank.

He probably wriggled loose from the explosive cos people still see him, scorched tail and all.

He's a bit skittish round humans.

That's quite a story. She was quite a girl.

Whatever happened to her?

Oh, you know.. .

Wound up pregnant, married some loser right out of high school.


Surprised?

What are you doing here? I came to deliver your fiance.

I think she was talking to me. Jake...

Must be exhausting.

What? What?

Living a lie. What is he talking about?

You and I are in love with two different people.

Is he a second cousin?

He's my husband. Your what?

My ex-husband. You married your cousin?

I came to finalise my divorce. Jesus Christ!

Hey, darling. I thought that was you.

This must be your new someone.

Earl Smooter. Glad to meet you.

Melanie Smooter.

Andrew, wait! Wait!

I just. .. Please!

Let me try and explain myself.

You don't understand. This is not who I am any more.

I don't know who you are but I know one thing.

There is a Lear jet in Mobile and I am on it.


I know you're thinking I spoiled things good this time.

Don't go accusing me of thinking. I ain't doing anything of the sort.

Anyway, spoiled is in the eye of the beholder.

Like these plums.

Some people might call them spoiled but I think that these almost ruined ones sometimes make the sweetest jam.

Do you need any help?

It was kind of fun seeing Daddy up there surrendering.

Yeah. He sure does have a flair for the dramatic.

You certainly don't get it from my side of the family.

Hey, y'all, look who I found walking down 958.

Hi.

I thought you'd be halfway to New York by now.

So did I .

If I'd known company was coming, I'd have put on the dog.

This is my momma.

She makes the best jam in three counties.

And my dad. You already met him.

And this is our home. This is where I grew up.

It's a pleasure meeting you both.

I'm Andrew Hennings, Melanie's fiance.

Well, that is if she'll still have me.

Look, Mel, I really don't care what happened down here.

So you have a past. I mean, who doesn't?

What I need to know is if there is a place for me in your future.

Good Lord, that is the sweetest thing.

Go on.

Hello, New York City.

Woman, what are you gassin' about?

Well, sir, my mother happens to be the mayor up there.

And she'd like nothing better than a big, snazzy New York wedding.

Well. . . I suppose I could take off work.

Andrew, I. . .

I was thinking maybe we could have the wedding here.

Here?

In my hometown.

If you're worried about the money. ..

It's not about the money, Andrew. Not down here.

A lot of people are expecting us to get married in the city.

But I think a nice quiet country wedding is just the ticket.

Earl, Pearl, if you folks could take care of the rehearsal dinner, I'd really like to take care of the rest.

I think we could cover that.

Heck! How many times does your only daughter get married?

Other than before.

Felony Melanie? She was never convicted.

Which is worse, child cat-killer or sons of the Confederacy?

What do you suggest I do? Dump her for being poor?

You're a Democrat, remember?

There's nothing wrong with being poor. I get elected by poor people.

And I commend her for making something of herself.

I'm upset that she lied to you.

So what? She was ashamed of her background.

Who isn't embarrassed by their parents at some point?

I'll assume that's a rhetorical question.

Assume away.

No one can change my mind about this.

Not you, not the media, not anyone.

Fine.

But admit it. I was right.

Yes, you were right. But she came clean. Can we move on?

There is a wedding in your future, whether you like it or not.

And how does Miss Alabama plan to accommodate 500 people?

She has connections at the jail?

There are several excellent choices. The Travelodge, Days Inn, Motel 6 and the Golden Cherry Motel, where we will be.

Laugh now. But if this gets out...

It won't. The press expects the Plaza in June.


About your wedding.

This place is gorgeous and we can control the security.

The Carmichael plantation?

It did inspire your identity, did it not?

You thought of everything. I always do. Keep in touch.


You guys remember the sheik? Yeah.

He proposed and I think I loved him, despite his billions.

Why didn't you say yes?

I realised my head and my heart were saying two different things.

It's a big decision.

It's supposed to be the easiest one you make.

Wasn't it?

Tabby, this is it! This is the stuff I was telling you about.

"Deep South Glass."

Oh, yes. Let's.

Oh, that's pretty.

What's the matter?

Oh, my God.

Do we know...

. .Mo?

Mel?


Look at these.

It's what happens to sand when it struck by lightning.

She's pulling your dick. No, really.

I've seen it. You just have to dig it up.

Hey, Bryant. Friend of yours?

I saw him first.

I think he's already taken.

I ... I tried to call you a couple of times.

You and your friends should look around and have some lunch.

Sit on the deck. It's nice.

Jake.

Come on, Bryant. Let's. . .

Let's leave this lady alone.

Come on.

Sir, can we help you?

I'm looking for a Melanie Carmichael.

Anybody here recognise that name?

What business you got with her? I'm afraid that's a private matter.

Then I'm afraid we can't help you.

Damn reporters.

It's like the first ant at a picnic.

Now. This one here is from Louisiana.

It's got a little alligator on top.

How sweet. I can see where your daughter gets her taste.

This is one of those disasters waiting to happen.

One of the big ones only cockroaches survive.

It's going to be fine.

One down, seven million to go.

Careful. You just smashed the state bird of Alabama.

Pearl.

Well, finally.

Oh, my. Well, I can see why Melanie is so adorable.

I'm so happy to be here. Hi, Earl.

We're so happy to have you here.

I'm sorry the place is such a mess, Mrs Hennings. Mayor!

No, no. It's Kate.

I've been trying to get Earl to weed these shrubs and repaint the trim.. .

Oh, my God! Look how pretty she is, Earl.

I'll bet Kate could use a drink. Kate could indeed.

Come right on then. I've got some fried pickles, hot out of the grease.

Yum.

It's a lovely chair, Earl.

To get the full effect, you pull this handle here.

Daddy, no!

Hold onto your drink, Kate.


Name? Wallace Buford.

I'm not on that list but I've got some urgent business with the bride.

Not today, you don't. Trooper.

Sir, let's get it turned around. Let's go.


Hi.

There's a wedding going on. I heard a mention of it.

I sure hope this weather cooperates.

It's supposed to be a big one.

You know, Jake,.. .

. .you're my only son and I love you.

But sometimes you are too much like your daddy.

She made her decision.

For somebody who's been holding onto something so hard, you're pretty quick to let it go.

I can't control her any more than I can control the weather.

It's just nerves. You're doing the right thing.

Am l?

When I married your daddy. . . Lord, I was a fool for that man.

I couldn't put one foot in front of the other.

I remember thinking, "Preacher, hurry up before he changes his mind."

Look where it got me.

Sometimes that man makes me so mad, I could wring his neck.

But you still love him?

God knows I do. And only He knows why.

Momma...

He can give you a life that we never dreamed of.

And he adores you.

He does, doesn't he?


Even if he is a Yankee, at least he's sober.

Miss Carmichael!

Get here! Get back here!

Mr Buford?

Get your hands off me!

Let him go!

Melanie?

You are one hard woman to get in touch with.

Mr Buford, he signed the papers. What are you doing here?

He did. You didn't.

What?

I'm still married?

Well, . . . only if you want to be.

For God's sakes, Melanie, I thought you took care of this.

It's an honest mistake.

Then can we fix it before we all get soaked?

Does anybody have a pen?

Mom? Oh, yeah, sure.

Darling?

These things don't just happen, you know.

You can't ride two horses with one ass, sugarbean.


Andrew?

You don't want to marry me. I don't?

No. No, you don't.

Not really.

You see, the truth is. . .

. . I gave my heart away long ago.

My whole heart.

And I never really got it back.

I don't even know what else to say but I'm sorry. I can't marry you.

And you shouldn't want to marry me.

So this is what this feels like.

That's it?

You're letting her humiliate you with some bullshit about an old husband?

Yeah.

I think I am.

Excuse me.

You. . .

In my entire life, I have never met anyone so manipulative, so deceitful.

And I'm in politics!

I'm just being honest.

I will not allow the future president of the United States to be dumped at the altar by some psycho Daisy May!

You go after him, you little bitch! Wait. Just a minute, missy.

There's no need for name calling.

She spoke her piece and that's all there is to it.

Go back to your double wide and fry something.

Nobody talks to my momma like that!

Praise the Lord! The South has risen again!

Hey! Y'all! lf you're friends of the bride, stick around!

I'm gonna go find me a groom!


Hey, cowboy!

You owe me a dance.

Nice dress. Where's your husband?

I'm looking at him.

Apparently, you and I are still hitched.

Is that right? Yeah.

Why didn't you say you came to New York?

I had to make something of myself. You about done?

What is it about Southern girls? Can't make the right decision till you try all the wrong ones?

I fight for what I want!

What do you want?

I don't even think you know.

You're the first boy I ever kissed, Jake. I want you to be the last.

Maybe you and I had our chance.

Fine! Have it your way, you stubborn ass!

What do you want to be married to me for anyhow?

So I can kiss you anytime I want.

What the hell are you two trying to do? Get yourselves killed?

What seems to be the trouble, Officer?

I'm here to bring you in, young lady.

What'd she do this time?

Well, the way I hear it, it seems she ran out on a perfectly good cake!


Here we go.

Well, folks. Look who finally made it to their reception.

Ladies and gentlemen, Mrs and Mr Jake Perry!

You might want to keep those for the honeymoon.

Speech!

Well, I do believe I owe this lady a dance.

You sure do!

Shut up, Bryant!

Look at this.

Hey, Stella.

Make it a slow one.


Smile!


Alright, stand right here.

Alright. Stand real close!