Nina Loves Alex (1982)
(theme song playing)
I just joined this great protection group in my neighborhood, see?
We patrol the streets, catch muggers, that kind of thing.
No fooling? Congratulations.
Yeah, man. Only one problem, though.
They say I got to have a partner.
They're all in teams, so they say I got to bring somebody in with me.
So what do you say, Alex?
Oh, me? No thanks. No thanks, Tony.
I'm sorry, no.
Hey, hey, hey, hey!
There's a person here.
You mean you, Jim?
Uh... Yes, I mean me.
I have something to say and your ignoring me made me forget it!
Guess I told him, didn't I?
You sure did.
I just hope he had it coming.
No, thanks, Tony, sorry, no.
Ah, I don't know why I'm even drinking coffee.
I'm so tired, I just want to go home and go to bed.
Hey, whoa, whoa, whoa, who are you? Who are you?
Oh, I'm your new driver.
Uh, my name is Nina Chambers.
You sure you're old enough to drive a cab?
Here's my driver's license.
Ah. You got a license.
That puts you on our "A" list.
All right, it's a busy day, so listen up.
I'll give you the whole indoctrination right here.
My name is Louie De Palma.
You're gonna hear a lot of foul things said about me by the other drivers in this garage.
I got my good side and I got my bad side.
Yeah, his good side is he's never bombed the children's hospital.
You gonna listen to me or you gonna stand there looking contemporary?
Well, uh, that was just funny what that man just said.
There are no men and women in this garage.
Only hacks who ferry frightened citizens around a diseased city.
I'm Alex Reiger. Hi, Nina.
(distinctly): "Nine-a, Nine-a." Nina.
What, did he just quit smoking?
Nah, you mean Louie? Nah, don't mind him.
His mother dropped him on his head.
About a week ago.
All right, I'll-I'll introduce you around.
Over here we have, uh...
Well anyway, over here...
Elaine Nardo, Nina Chambers. Hi, Nina.
(distinctly): "Nee-na." Hi, Nina.
Why don't you sit down?
So, you're new at this, huh?
My first night.
And I'm looking forward to it, too.
It should be exciting.
You know, couples going to the movies, kids on their first date, anniversaries, you know, lots of happy people.
This is just gonna be great, you know?
I see you're planning on driving in the borough of Oz.
Watch out for the Munchkins; they're light tippers.
I'm going home. Good night.
He's cute, don't you think?
I hadn't noticed.
No, no, no, I'm just kidding.
Yes, he's very cute.
Hey, Alex, Alex, Alex, let me take you home.
Be my first fare.
Hey, Louie, give her a cab.
Oh, sure, first time out, you deserve something special.
Let's see, uh, you got cab 404.
That's got no springs and no heater.
We call it Old Whip 'n' Chill.
Uh... (clears throat)
Excuse me, Elaine.
You're cute, Jim.
What a kidder!
What a kidder.
Maybe you're right.
Sometimes I use "Nee-na," sometimes I use "Nine-a."
Huh, I guess.
I don't know, I don't like to get pinned down, you know?
Of course, on stage, I really...
You're an actress?
I've done some commercials, some bus and truck tours.
You know, one show almost got to Broadway called Stompin' and Clompin' and Cuttin' Loose.
It played one week and I lost 11 pounds.
I did some TV, but...
Yeah, every script they send you has you saying either "jive turkey" or "say what, sucker?"
How'd you know that?
You sure are sharp, Alex.
Yeah, well, listen, right now, I sure am tired.
Uh, you don't mind if we don't talk, do you?
I have this little alarm that goes off every time I'm with someone who's about to be enthusiastic.
Excuse me. Go to sleep.
(tires screech, Alex yelps)
You know, uh, there's this audition I'm trying to get.
Boy, this part is just wonderful and if I could just get them to see me, then I... Hey, listen, uh...
I mean, I-I-I'm really too tired to talk, let alone participate in a conversation with a young actress cab driver who's about to lick the world.
Sorry I bothered you.
WOMAN: Please, taxi!
Oh, you've already got a fare.
Oh, he's just a driver I'm dropping off.
WOMAN: Oh, thanks a lot, 'cause, um, I'm on the decorating committee and we're late.
Sorry's no good when there's no Eiffel Tower.
Where am I...? Excuse me, I'm sorry.
Who are we?
It just started raining, Alex, and I couldn't let them just wait out there.
We're 16 and we're in love, so could you please do us a favor?
Buy us liquor?
I would, but I forgot my I.D.
Hey, I-I live here.
Listen, Alex, I really enjoyed having you as my first fare.
Yeah, we really enjoyed it, too, didn't we, gang?
Nee-na/Nine-a's Magical Mystery Tour.
Hey, hey, Alex? Yeah.
Can I talk to you for a second?
Huh? Up here?
Hey, Alex, uh, you want to go somewhere after I get off work?
She's asking you for a date.
Hey, that's really very nice, but, uh, I, uh...
What about it?
Uh, thank you, no. I'm sorry.
(guy and girl in backseat moaning)
Well, when caught off guard, I usually say no.
Well, next time, you won't be caught off guard.
GUY & GIRL: Ooh!
Can we talk about this in the garage tomorrow?
Listen, Alex, I really enjoyed meeting you.
Take care of yourself, huh?
Yeah, right. Um, good night.
I'm glad we got rid of Captain Bummer.
If you had a car, we wouldn't have to go through this.
If I had a car, I would have asked Wendy.
Mr. De Palma? I've got a problem.
A rookie with a problem.
Your envelope wasn't big enough for all the money, so I had to use one of mine.
You think that's against regulations?
Is this a rib?
I've never said this before, miss, but wacka, wacka, wacka!
If you do this again tomorrow... you can go into the lost and found and take anything you want.
We got matching shoes in there.
Hi, Alex. Hi.
Sorry I kept you waiting, but it's so easy to make money, you know?
Yeah, the usual cab driver's complaint.
You know, listen, I feel great!
Let's go out!
Did we have plans?
You aren't tired again, are you?
I don't know what it is.
I think I have to see a doctor.
I'm always tired after a 12-hour shift.
I'm sorry, Nina, but I think I'm going to have to beg off.
But the best thing for your tiredness is to go out and have some fun.
Uh, look, Nina, um...
I don't date very much, and even if I did, I'd have a hard time keeping up with you.
And you'd have a hard time keeping down with me.
So, if you don't mind, uh, I don't think it's a good idea if we go out.
Well, I... I-I hear what you're saying.
But I'm not listening.
Listen to me.
I'm a street guy.
I was raised... by Old World people.
But for the first time in my life, I'm free of prejudice.
I endorse this relationship between the two of you... despite the obvious problems.
What obvious problems?
Well, suppose you go out.
You fall in love.
You get married.
What if you had kids?
With her skinny body and your nose, they'd spend their whole lives falling on their faces.
I got a problem.
How do you stop somebody from brightening up your life?
She left these tied to the cab door handle with a note saying, "It's about time you started cheering up.
I'll be helpful."
Apparently, she's attracted to you.
Oh, that's why she wrote in the dirt on my windshield:
"My heart belongs to Cabbie." (laughs)
So clean your windshield.
You know, this has been going on for a whole week!
You know, this'll be the first day she didn't send me flowers... if those are for you.
I should be so lucky.
"Do you know how sweet you look with balloons in your ha..."
Oh, come on... (muttering)
Look at this here!
I wish I had the self-confidence to be that direct.
Yeah? Well, not everybody can be like that.
There's not enough helium in this world.
Oh, that's all right... Sometime they'll come back down and brighten up an otherwise dull day around here.
So why don't you just go out with her?
I'm not interested. Why?
Why?! Well, going past the difference in our age and going past the difference in our race and going past the difference in our attitudes and interests and metabolisms, and the fact that people who work together shouldn't get involved with each other...
Sure. and the fact that she's a crazy little actress who likes to sing in her cab and wears ditsy clothes and has a view of the world shared only by Jiminy Cricket...
I mean, going past all that and getting down to the real heart of the matter... I don't like her.
Oh, come on, big fella, I know that you don't go on like this I don't like her.
About anything unless you have a connection.
Oh, well, then I just won't go on about her.
I have absolutely no need to go on about it.
Oh, don't look at me like that, Elaine.
And what's more...
Look, the last thing I need in my life is a born-again cheerleader who's gonna try to kick some life into the old boy.
She thinks if you treat people right, they'll treat you right.
She's like every actress or Hindu that I ever met.
She has karma, she's high on life, she's positive, hard-working, joyful... and I don't like her!
Oh, no, this has become my least favorite part of the day.
Another big-money night?
(coins clinking) (giddy cackling)
Let me see.
Oh! Nina, I gotta tell you this.
I'm not a sentimental man, but each day when I look into this envelope, I get all misty.
And I love the way you light up when I come in, Louie.
She loves me! (laughing)
Before you two start pouring champagne over each other, I want to talk to you.
Come here for a second.
No, I just wanna talk to you for a second.
Listen, Alex, I can't talk right now.
I got the audition for that part.
They're finally seeing me.
But... But if you like, we could talk later.
You gonna be home around 7:00? Yeah.
I'll come by. Okay.
No, uh, no, no.
Well, it's better on my turf.
I mean, I've been too nice about it, haven't I?
I'm not gonna worry about hurting her feelings anymore.
I mean, I've had it!
If she doesn't understand, you can explain it over a weekend in Connecticut.
(knocking on door)
I think I got the part.
I think I got the part, Alex.
I really do.
It was the best audition I ever gave!
You really are a cure for euphoria.
Now, look, I'm very pleased about your news, but I have something to talk to you about.
Now sit down, please. Alex, I hope you don't mind.
I gave them your number. They're gonna call. Yeah, okay.
They haven't called yet, have they? No!
Look... You haven't been on the phone, have you? No, look, Nina, would you just...
Is your phone working? What are you doing?
No, they might be trying to call me right now.
Nina, would you please sit down?
Alex, I cannot sit still.
Talk to me if you want to, but I cannot sit still.
What does it take to get you excited?
I would get excited if you got the part.
I think I've gotten the part.
Oh, don't be ridiculous!
Until you get the phone call, how can you be sure? Because I overheard the playwright say to the composer that "she's perfect," and the... and the composer said, "She sings like an angel," and the stage doorman...
Oh, the stage doorman, he says, "I knew you were gonna get that part," and-and-and the director kissed me on both cheeks, like they do in Europe, and he says, "I've never been so moved since Judy Garland re-opened at the Palace."
They're talking to my agents right now, Alex.
And, if that's not enough, I've got a funny feeling creeping up my left leg that tells me something good is gonna happen to me today.
So what do you think?
Sounds like a good audition.
You-You really think so?
Yes, she is.
Well, I'll see.
Are you in?
Stand back, Alex.
I'm gonna need a little freakin' space!
Thanks, thanks, Paulie.
They said I was too right for it.
Too... Too on the nose.
Too right for it?!
They said they adored my acting, and my-my dancing, and my singing.
It's just me they didn't like.
Oh, no, hey, listen, uh... hey, come on, you know, like-like... I mean, uh, hey, listen, you know... (crying)
Well, come on, it-it...
Why do I make myself so crazy, and get my hopes up so high?
Hey, come on, if you believe in yourself, you're gonna make it!
You were right all along, Alex.
No, Nina, I wasn't.
Don't-Don't try to make me feel better.
Oh, don't worry.
I probably won't come close.
Hey, Nina, I know this must feel like the worst night of your life, but... hey, come on, just between the two of us, no kidding, isn't it great you almost got it?
You almost got the part.
You're 25 years old.
You nearly got the lead in a Broadway show.
You're blessed and you're lucky, because you get to have a broken heart over something that good.
The last broken heart I had was when the Jets didn't cover.
You really are somethin'.
So... what was it you wanted to talk to me about?
Nah, it's, uh... Oh... you wanted to ask me to stop bothering you, right?
Look, Nina, Nina... the basic problem between us is that you're looking for magic, and believe me, from the bottom of my heart, look at me, I'm a no-magic man.
I'm going home.
Kiss me good night?
Boy... you sure are smart.
You said no magic, and darned if it ain't so!
Alex, thanks for helping me out this evening.
I really appreciate it, huh?
Thanks a whole lot. What?
You're wonderful. Hey, hey, no, hey.
Look, look... I'll see ya later, huh?
Do you want a cup of coffee... I mean, Ciao.
Don't you want to talk or anything?
I mean, you gotta have some problems and want to talk about it, I'm really good with problems. I'm all right, I'm all right, really. Don't worry about me.
We could have dinner. You know, I-I was...
Alex, you've helped me plenty already.
Oh, I can help you more than that. Oh... no.
You've got a lot more problems than that. I'm fine.
No, I mean it. I'm fine.
Oh, good. Yeah, okay.
Yeah, I'll see ya.
(theme song playing)
WOMAN: Good night, Mr. Walters!