The Conformist (1970) Script

THE CONFORMIST


It's me.

Everything all right?

What do you mean, she's gone? She's gone too?

I'll be waiting outside the hotel.


Who could have imagined a thing like that, sir?

When he went down to the street, it was still dark.

Then the front door opened again and she came out too.

I thought she must have come down to say goodbye to him.

Instead she opens the car door, puts the dog in, gets in herself and they're off.

Aren't you listening?

Yes. Yes.

Damn it. We could have done without this.

Anyway, as far as I'm concerned, I followed the instructions.

So you've made up your mind? What will you get from marriage?

I don't know. The impression of normality.

Normality! Yes. Stability, security.

In the morning when I'm getting dressed I look in the mirror and it seems like I look different from everybody else.

What do you like about Giulia? I don't know.

Maybe her body, her sensuality. Yeah? And what about her?

As soon as we're alone she jumps on me.

And then? We always end up rolling on the carpet.

And the maid with the big tits? Oh, she's part of the dowry.

So you're getting married and I'm losing my best friend.

But I'm...happy.

Two minutes and you're on.

You're sure he's coming? The Colonel? Of course. He'll be here.

He promised me. He's very interested.

Try and keep calm. It's funny, though, you know.

Everyone wants to be different but you want to be the same as everybody else.

Ten years ago, my father was in Munich.

He told me that often, after the theatre...

...he used to go to a beer hall with his friends.

There was a funny man there who wasn't quite right.

He'd talk about politics.

He'd become quite an attraction.

They'd buy him beer and egg him on.

He'd climb onto a table and make furious speeches.

It was Hitler.

Ladies and gentlemen, that was "Who's Happier Than Me?" by Cesare Andrea Bixio.

That's the end of our popular music programme with the Arcangeli Orchestra.

The singers were Silvana Fioresi, Oscar Carboni, Lina Termini and the Rondinelle Trio.

We bring you now "Mystique of an Alliance", a talk by Italo Montanari.

Italy and Germany, the cornerstones of two civilisations.

Over the centuries, each of their encounters marks a turning point...

...in the course of history.

Once again, these two peoples are rediscovering their ancient virtues and their reciprocal and long-forgotten similarities, what Goebbels calls the Prussian aspect of Benito Mussolini and what we see as the Latin aspect of Hitler.

Italy and Germany, bringing us two great revolutions, Anti-Parliamentarian and Anti-Democratic.

Please stay, Clerici.

Is there any news for me?

Your personal record really is excellent.

Then I'm hired? Such decisions must be taken carefully.

Yes, I understand.

Civil servant, classical education, good career prospects and a recommendation from Comrade Montanari.

Come to the Ministry one morning.

Come to my office with your bright, shining face and make an official application.

The Minister's office!

Have you ever asked yourself why people want to collaborate with us?

Some do it out of fear.

Most of them do it for the money.

Very few do it because they believe in Fascism.

But not you.

I don't feel that you're driven by any of these reasons.

When can I expect a reply?

Soon,I hope.

If I put aside the idealist revolutionary...

I wonder what your intentions are.

I'm ready to go as soon as you decide.

Fine.

I'll introduce you to the Minister.


Clerici? Clerici!

Yes, sir. The Minister is expecting us.

Is this your first time meeting the Minister?

Yes.

When I explained your plan to him, the first thing he said was, "Excellent.

"He can get close to Professor Quadri, win his trust

"and try to find out who his contacts in Italy are."

Yes, yes, excellent.

And, most importantly, spontaneous.

And voluntary. Voluntary work.

Repression of Anti-Fascism.

You've got to try and understand women.

She'd decided to stay in Paris. So stay there, then.

I'm sorry, I didn't get that. It's nothing. It's Latin.

Five, four, three, two, one.

The time is 1 pm.

Here.

Lovely.

Aren't you giving them to me, Marcello?

Today I absolutely need your flowers.

Give them here. For you.

You know what I was thinking? I must go to a fortune teller.

I want to know everything about you.

What are you doing there?

Darling!

Careful!

We're engaged. We're not doing anything wrong.

Look what my uncle brought me from America.

What is it?


Mummy's written a guest list. Want to see it?

No, I trust her.

Know what Don Lattanzi said?

If you want to get married, you have to go to confession and take communion.

He can't marry us otherwise.

I don't believe in it. Who does?

90 per cent of the people who go to church today don't believe.

The priests don't either.

All right, if you want me to, I'll go to confession.

I love you.

If you want to...

If I want to... Yes, right here.

On the floor, on the carpet. Do you want to?

We should think about the priest.

He may not grant me absolution.

They always grant everyone absolution.

After all, there's not very long to go now.

Have you thought about our honeymoon?

Of course.

But I can't tell you anything yet.

It's a surprise.

A surprise? A surprise?

Oh, yes, I adore surprises.

Giulia, go in there.

Marcello, someone's got it in for us... Come and eat!

An anonymous letter? An anonymous letter?

People are terrible.

Worse than stabbing us in the back. But what's in the letter?

It came this morning, postmarked Rome.

Let me see what they've written.

Read it out loud and then we'll burn it.

There are such nasty things in it.

"Madam, in allowing your daughter to marry Mr Clerici, "you're committing more than an error, you're committing a crime.

"Mr Clerici's father has been in an asylum for years

"with a brain disease brought on by syphilis.

"As you know, this disease is hereditary.

"There's still time to stop the marriage.

"A friend."

I'm happy to have a check-up.

No, of course not. I don't mind at all.

In Germany, premarital medical tests are obligatory.

My dear, you're not a man, you're an angel.

Thank you.

Doctors can confirm that the origin of my father's mental illness isn't venereal.

By the way, my little girl has had mumps, scarlet fever and German measles.

They're all very moral illnesses. Yes, they are!


Who are you? Why are you following me?

Pure coincidence.

I wasn't following you.

Evidently we're both going to the same place.

I'd like to ask you something. Would your name be Clerici?

Yes, I'm Mr Clerici. And who are you?

I'm Special Agent Manganiello. The Colonel sent me.

Get in.

Thanks. Trees!

What a mess. The house looks like a dung heap.

Yes, it's a pity.

Trees!

Hurry up, Manganiello, or we won't catch them.

I can't go any faster than this. The road is slippery.

They're only half an hour ahead. Don't talk so much. Hurry up!

God, it's slippery.

I know and I don't care. We've got to save her.

I understand you.

But if we break our necks, where will that get us, eh?

The Colonel said that I have to tell you...

Later. Wait here.

Mother. Cover yourself, please.

I don't want to see you half-naked.

I've got a moralist for a son.

You know what, I was just dreaming.

You came in through that door, you sat on my bed and you kissed me.

Aren't you going to get dressed?

What's the time?

It's late. Aren't we going to visit Daddy?

Why doesn't he die?

We'd save all that money we pay the hospital, and I've got so little.

Sell the car. No, I'm not selling it.

If I do, it means getting rid of Trees, and I don't want to.

I feel so lonely in this house. I want to see him whenever I like.

Please don't talk to me about your lovers.

My lovers? There's only one.

And he's much more classy than your silly fiancée.

What a bastard you are!

No, no...

I'm not selling the car.

I'll sell the house.

I want to travel around Europe.

Trees was born to travel.

And Rome has become so provincial.

Middle-class children marrying into good families.

It's all a load of horse manure!

Special Agent Manganiello! At your service!

Does this house look normal to you? A place for normal people?

The Colonel said that I have to tell you...

For a normal childhood?

This decadence makes me sick.

Manganiello. Yes, sir?

Comrade.

Do you see this?

It's morphine.

What does the Colonel want?

There's a slight change of plan.

On your way to Paris, before you cross the border, you must stop in Ventimiglia.

Via dei Glicini, No.3.

What's at No.3 Via dei Glicini?

You'll meet a trusted person called Raoul.

He'll give you further instructions.

How long have you been in the ranks?

Since 1923.

Turkey, France, Africa.

Still going strong?

I never stop. All for my family and my country.

Country before family.

Yes, sir. Of course.

Comrade!

Manganiello.

Do you see that person?

His name is Ki.

Ki? That's right.

Ki means trees in Japanese.

Being called Trees isn't normal.

He's a pimp.

He couldn't be my brother, but my mother could be his mother.

I said it's not normal.

He brings her morphine and uses her as he wishes.

Trees? Yes.

Do you understand why I'm telling you this?

Five minutes and he won't even have time to pack his bags.

Tell the Colonel he can count on me.

Trees! Trees!

Trees! Where is he hiding?

You haven't insulted him? Me? No, he's so charming.

Trees!

Trees! Trees!

Have you looked in his room?

I've looked everywhere. Even under your bed.


How are things, Franz? Better than yesterday.

Yesterday we were very bad. Very bad?

We had to wear our straitjacket.

And today? Today is better.

The wind gives us inspiration.

I'll never tire of repeating this.

If the state doesn't model itself on the image of the individual, how can the individual ever model himself on the image of the state?

Etcetera, etcetera.

Slaughter and melancholy.

Slaughter and melancholy.

Antonio, your son has decided to get married.

Marcello's getting married?

Slaughter and melancholy.

Look.

The wedding announcement. Stop it. He's your father!

I like it. Sign it.

Read. He's not as crazy as he looks.

May I have a moment alone with my father?

When I was little you used to tell me about your punitive expeditions.

I don't know, I can't remember anything.

Why are you ashamed? It's important for me.

When you were healthy, did you use a bludgeon?

Yes.

And did you force-feed castor oil? Yes.

And torture? Yes.

And kill? Did you kill as well?

Go away! Franz! Franz!

Do you believe in fate, sir?

Well, two years ago in Africa, after a mission like this, they tell me at Headquarters, "Did you receive the counter-orders?"

"What counter-orders?"

In Rome they decided to suspend the whole thing because it wasn't necessary.

Go faster.

There's nothing we can do for the woman, even if we get there in time.

You know perfectly well we can't afford any witnesses.

Stop.

I want to get out.

What's the point of going?

Marcello, sir!

But we have to be there. We have a certain responsibility.

Look at that!

Stop!

Stop.

Who makes the report otherwise?

Unbutton his trousers!

Let me get up!

The police! The police! Come on!


Stop!

What's your name? Marcello Clerici. What's yours?

Pasqualino Semirama. But call me Lino.

How long is it since your last confession?

Since my first Holy Communion. Bad, my son, very bad.

How old are you? 34.

And all this time you have lived like an animal.

Tell me, which sins have you committed?

I've committed them all. Even the worst sin.

All of them? All of them. I've even killed.

Killed? And you didn't feel the need to confess?

Pardon?

You didn't feel the need to rush to confession?

I was 13.


What were your friends trying to do?

They're just stupid.

What did they want from you? Nothing.

All right, then, what present?

A gun. A cap pistol?

No, a real one.

I've got one too. A Mauser.

You want it? If you want it, I'll give it to you.

Where is it? It's in my room. Come.

I have a pretty oriental kimono too.

Do you know who Madame Butterfly is?

Where are we going?


Go on, tell me. What did he want from you?

I didn't understand. He was just like a woman.

A woman? I felt him trembling.

So what happened? Kisses?

Fondling?

Are you sure you're telling the truth?

Yes.

And did you have carnal relations?

Shoot. What are you waiting for? Go on, shoot.

Kill the pretty butterfly!


Now tell me the details. No, that's enough, please.

It's almost as if the church considers sodomy more serious than killing a man.

How dare you be so insolent?

Remember that I'm a priest and you're a sinner.

After that time did you have sexual relations with other men?

No. A normal sex life.

Which means what? A brothel when I was 18.

And since then, relationships only with women.

This, in your opinion, is a normal sex life?

Yes. Why?

You, my son, have always lived in sin.

Normal means marriage, having a wife, a family.

That's what I want.

Good. Good.

I'm going to build a normal life.

I'm marrying a middle-class girl.

She must be a fine girl, then.

Keep talking. Hurry up.

Mediocre.

Full of petty ideas...

...petty little ambitions.

She's all bed and kitchen.

You shouldn't use such expressions.

Normality.

I want to construct my normality, but it won't be easy.

Stay within religion. Outside religion!

God is so bountiful. The Virgin is so maternal.

Christ is so merciful.

And the priest is so blessed with understanding.

You haven't demonstrated any horror for my crime yet.

Just a bit of astonishment because I didn't run to confession right away.

You need to repent, my son, and ask for forgiveness.

I've already repented. I want to be forgiven by society.

Yes.

Today I'm confessing the sin I'll commit tomorrow.

One sin atones for another.

It is the price I have to pay to society. And I shall pay it.

Are you a part of some new sect, some group of subversives?

No. No.

I belong to the organization that hunts subversives.

Music!


Long live the bridegroom! Long live the bridegroom!

Congratulations!

When is the wedding? Next Sunday.

Why didn't you bring the bride? What's her name?

Let's drink to the end of bachelorhood!

Are there biscuits too? And crackers.

Just a drop. Just pour me a drop. It goes to my head quickly.

I'm really touched by this party. People wanted to meet you.

Never mind. It's just a tray. Good, good. It's a lucky sign.

You know, they're so excited.

Whenever there's an event, people get excited.

You must forgive them.

I'm about to go on a mission. Good!

Your presentation was wonderful.

I appreciate it. They never refuse me.

Music! Come on, let's play.

People are waiting to speak with the Duce.

Suddenly a frightful scream is heard.

That's enough.

Where are you? Have you started again?

The lesson from last time wasn't enough for you? Stop crying.

I shall play the last foxtrot by Maestro Lori for you.

What do you get out of working for them?

I get the feeling I'm finally back to the normal state I mentioned to you.

What do you think a normal man is like?

A normal man!

For me, a normal man...

...is a man who turns round to look at a beautiful woman's bottom and realises he's not the only one who's turned round.

There are at least five or six others and he is glad to find people who are like him.

His equals.

That's why he likes crowded beaches, football matches, the bar in town...

The crowds listening to Mussolini in Piazza Venezia.

He likes people similar to himself and doesn't trust those who are different.

That's why a normal man is a true brother, a true citizen, a true patriot... A true Fascist.

Have you ever wondered why we're friends?

Because we're different from the others.

We're two of a kind.

Marcello? Are you here?

What's the matter? You don't agree? I know you do.

I am never wrong.

Listen. Rain falls from the scattered clouds, rain falls on the tamarisks, briny and parched, rain falls on the pine trees, scaly and bristling, rain falls on the myrtles, divine, rain falls on our hands, naked, on our clothes, light, on the fresh thoughts that our soul discloses, renewed,

on the lovely fable that yesterday beguiled you, that beguiles me today, O Hermione.

Marcello, I am unworthy of you.

Marcello, I am unworthy of you.

Yes, yes. I am unworthy of you.

You sound just like your mother.

I need to tell you something.

But you mustn't look at me. If you look, I'll be ashamed.

Maybe afterwards you won't love me any more, but I've got to tell you.

I...

I'm not what you think I am.

I'm not... I'm not a virgin.

What do you think of me now?

I married you because I loved you, not because you were a virgin.

Darling, I know you have a modern mentality, but I still wanted to tell you.

There's something I forgot to mention.

We're getting off at Ventimiglia. I've got an appointment.

But I have to tell you everything.

You're angry.

You were in love with someone before you met me. Who was it?

He was a man of 60. A disgusting old man.

A family friend.

Who is it?

Perpuzio, the lawyer. Perpuzio?

But he was one of our witnesses. He insisted.

How could I have said no?

It lasted for six years. Six years?

Six years.

Come in. Excuse me, sir.

We'll be in Ventimiglia in a few minutes.

Thank you.

Is this No.3 Via dei Glicini? No.3.


Who is it?

He looked like he might be an officer in civvies!

This isn't a museum. Go inside, go inside.

I'll send the others down right away.

I'm an idiot, a complete maniac.

Again! Say it again.

The gentleman is a friend of Signor Raoul.

Go on! Say it!

I'm crazy, a complete maniac.

I'm crazy.

Clerici!

What are you doing? We're wasting time.

Come here!

What?

Professor Quadri's activities in France have become interfering and provocative.

It's become necessary to make an example of him.

You were going to have to contact him, win his trust and get information.

But now... But now?

There's a counter-order from Rome. All you do is eliminate him.

Is that clear? Very.

The operation will not take place in Paris.

It's up to you to choose the time and location.

It's up to you.

We've nothing more to talk about.

Fine. This means I have no alternative.

Comrade Clerici.

It must be swift and decisive! Comrade!

The train for Paris leaves in an hour.

My hat. I've lost my hat. Where is it?

Then he entered the room. Slowly.

He came up behind me and said, "What are you doing?"

Come and sit here.

"It's my Italian essay," I said.

He grabbed me by the hair.

And I... Imagine, I used to call him Uncle.

Then he unbuttoned my blouse.

I was well-developed at 15.

He squeezed me so hard I almost fainted.

And then, I don't know, I was lying on the bed.

He was on top of me.

Then I understood everything and all my strength left me.

Did you like it?

I lay there, passive. And then?

He did everything he wanted to me.

I cried so much and in order to console me he said he was absolutely crazy about me.

Six years, eh?


26-15-37, please.

Length nine and width... I'll wait.

Who are you calling? One, two, three, four...

A man with a hump. Hunchbacks bring good luck!

Five, six.

Six times nine is 54. 54 square metres?

That's right.

He's an old university professor of mine.

We called him Smerdikoff.

His was the only class that was crowded.

All the first-year girls were in love with him.

It's engaged?

Can you try again in a few minutes, please?

The year I was supposed to graduate, he was force-fed castor oil.

Nine years ago. Will he remember me?

I went to ask him to supervise my thesis.

He asked me if I was a Fascist.

What did you say?

I didn't answer him.

He told me he couldn't carry on teaching philosophy in a Fascist country.

Hello?

This is Clerici. I was a student of yours in Rome and I'd like to see you.

Of course, Professor. I came to see you about my graduate thesis.

It was the year that you stopped teaching.

I don't remember your name. It was so long ago.

Clerici, you said?

Yes. And you said to me...

I remember very clearly, you said, "The time for reflection is over for me. Now begins the time for action."

And you want to see me? Yes.

Why? I don't have a precise reason.

They still talk about you in Rome. And I'd like to see you, that's all.

Let's see. Could you come over to my house?

Yes. When?

Today, if you like, after lunch. Come and have coffee.

I'm honeymooning in Paris.

Would it be all right if I brought my wife?

Of course. 17 Rue Saint Jacques.

I'll see you later, then. Thank you.

He has a nice voice. Not like a hunchback's.

Shall I wear casual clothes or really dress up?

But why bother?

He'll be a typical intellectual, disagreeable and impotent.

How do you know that?

I don't really. My uncle used to always say...

Uncle Perpuzio! You can laugh.

But he's the one who sent the anonymous letter.

Stop it!

But, Marcello...

You answer. Say I'm not in.

What if they're speaking French? No, they'll speak Italian.

Answer it!

Hello?

No, he's not here.

Very well, I'll tell him.

He said he'll call back this afternoon.

Funny name, Manganiello.


Yes, what is it? My name's Clerici.

You've got the wrong apartment. No, I haven't got the wrong apartment.

You're Italian? The Professor is expecting them.

I'll deal with them.

Oh, God! Marcello!

Get away from him, Marcello! Run!

That's enough, Roby.

Lie down, Roby. Lie down.

You're Monsieur Clerici, aren't you?

Come in.

You shouldn't be afraid. Me? I'm not afraid.

Well, then, come up. He doesn't hurt my friends.

That's strange. Dogs usually lick me.

Is this your first visit to Paris?

Do you like it? Yes. It's so pretty.

The station, the hotel, and here as well.

Here. Thank you.

If you like, later I could show you around a little.

Yes, please!

And when you come to Italy, I can show you around Rome.

The squares, churches, museums...

Yes.

What are they doing? The coffee will get cold.

Come on, boys, the coffee's getting cold.

I wonder why she seems so hostile.

You think she's hostile? She's really nice.

She acts like we've known each other for years.

She seems to have it in for me.

I've never met her. I don't even know who she is.

She's Professor Quadri's wife.

She's young enough to be his daughter.

Didn't you hear her saying, "I'll call my husband"?

She said "my husband"? Yes.

No, going to the printer's is too expensive.

We won't manage it with the mimeograph.

30,000 copies is no joke... It always breaks down.

Don't you trust me?

It's worth buying a printer ourselves.

My husband's still busy. He'll see you in a few minutes, all right?

Yes, we've got time. He said we can eat together tonight.

We'd love to.

Later we can go dancing at Joinville.

Is that all right? I'm always happy to go dancing.

Is dancing still allowed in Italy?

Now that I think about it, I can't. Why?

I haven't got anything to wear. You know what?

I'll take you to buy a dress.

Shouldn't we go immediately? No. I have a class at half past three.

But we can meet at your hotel, if you like, at five.

Which hotel are you in? The D'Orsay.

We'll see you at five, then? No.

Shopping is just for women. Men pay.

You'll let me go? You don't mind? No.

Take him to the Professor.

Come in, come in, Clerici. Did they give you coffee?

Yes, thank you. Goodbye. Thank you.

Goodbye. Giulia.

Yes? I'm curious.

Before you married him, did you go to bed with him?

I'm very curious, Clerici.

You've come all this way to see me?

Remember, Professor, as soon as you walked in the classroom we had to shut the windows.

You couldn't stand all that light, that noise.

Later I understood why you used to do that.

In all these years, you know what remained most firmly imprinted on my memory?

Your voice.

Imagine a great dungeon in the shape of a cave.

Inside, men who have lived there since childhood, all chained, and forced to face the back of the cave.

Behind them, far away, the light from a fire flickers.

Between the fire and the prisoners, imagine a low wall similar to the little stage where a puppeteer does his show.

It was November 1928.

Yes, I remember.

Now try and imagine some other men...

...passing behind that little wall...

...carrying statues made of wood and stone.

The statues are higher than that wall.

You couldn't have brought me a better gift than these memories.

Plato's prisoners in chains.

And how they resemble us.

What do they see? What do they see?

Coming from Italy, you should know from experience.

They only see the shadows the fire makes on the back of the cave that faces them.

Shadows. The reflections of things.

Like what's happening to you people now in Italy.

If those prisoners were free to speak, wouldn't they perhaps call their visions reality?

Yes. They would mistake the shadows of reality for reality itself.

The myth of the great cave.

That was the graduate thesis you came to see me about.

Did you finish it? No. When you left I changed topic.

I'm truly sorry, Clerici. I had so much faith in you.

In all of you. No, I don't believe it.

If that were true, you'd never have left Rome.

That's fine. Go on!

Keep going. Faster.

Faster. Faster.

Faster. Faster.

We'd reached the point where there was no other choice.

All we could do was emigrate.

We wanted everyone to be able to feel our disdain and our rebellion as exiles, the meaning of our struggle, the historical meaning.

Beautiful words, but you left and I became a Fascist.

Sorry, Clerici, but a dyed-in-the-wool Fascist doesn't talk like that.

Yes? Yes, it's me. Yes. Go ahead.

One lover? Only one?

She hit rock bottom for a ruddy red-headed pimp, a Jew, reeking of garlic, who, coming back from Formosa, snatched her from a Shanghai brothel.

You really will lend me these fox furs?

Keep them as long as you like. Thank you.

Wait for me. I'll be right back.

Do You often spy on people?

Stop talking to me in French.

I met a woman with your eyes.

Where? Ventimiglia.

The resemblance is unbelievable.

And who was she? A prostitute.

Thank you.

Did she kiss well? It was as if I'd kissed you.

How did it end up? It didn't.

We kissed and that was it.

I was left with this great desire to find her again.

Why are you so hostile?

Because I'm sincere.

She had a scar there.

No! Let me go, you bastard!


Who knows what it's for? It isn't gold like I imagined.

From here it's almost as small as the one on my bedside table.

They say once a month some disappointed lover throws himself off.

How stupid.

Would you like to go up? Yes.

Taxi!

Yes! I'd love to! We're going up the Eiffel Tower!

Quick! To the Eiffel Tower. Bye!

And you? Marcello!

Careful!

Nice and supple. Go on.

Hélène, chin up.

Try it again.

Watch your knees, Denise.

Breathing.

That's starting to look good, isn't it?

Go on.

Your head.

Feet together nicely.

Pointes.

Eyes still, Margot.

Don't be afraid!

There! Well done!

Five minutes' break.

Thank you, Madame.

Is there some place to talk? Here.

No, not here. Why not here?

I have some friends in Brazil.

I'll leave everything if you come with me.

I, on the other hand, have friends in Italy.

I received a letter. Read it.

"If you receive this letter, it will have got through the prison censors."

You must never make movements as wide as this.

Why did you stop? Go on.

"They come suddenly in the night and kick my cell door so I don't sleep."

Why do... Carry on.

Why are you making me read this letter?

I'll tell you afterwards.

"Some days, there are pretend executions.

"They have already sent me the priest three times

"and I refused extreme unction.

"They gave me castor oil again, but they should realise

"that after almost 20 years I'm used to it, it has no effect."

Why must I read this letter?

You want me to tell you?

Because you're a Fascist! A spy!

You know what they call you here? Grasses.

Does your husband know?

Why do you think he agreed to see you?

You're a worm.

You disgust me! You disgust me!

I'm going to pick up Giulia from the hotel.

We'll take the first train back to Rome.

You'd never do it. You're too much of a coward.


Marcello! Hold me.

Marcello, I'm frightened.

Marcello, don't hurt us.

Swear it! Swear it, please.

I don't know.


Giulia, look at this.

Anna! Come here!

It's a surprise!

Look at that colour. It's a dream!

Giulia, come and look at this one. Here.

Anna! It's divine!

Look how beautiful it is! Just look!

Giulia, come on.

It's very big, all made from wood, with enormous beds.

It belonged to my grandfather. Luca and I used to go there a lot.

Roby, come here!

But now with what's going on in Spain, we don't leave Paris any more.

Calm down, Roby. All right, that's enough.

Savoy is beautiful. I can't wait to go back there.

Sir?

Sir!

Come on, I know you're back there.

Why don't you want to see me?

I've been running after you all day.

And it's bloody freezing here.

Come out and we can have a chat.

What is it? Is something wrong?

Are you worried about something? Let's talk about it.

I have my responsibilities too.

Time's moving on.

What are we waiting for? You must have a plan by now.

You haven't stood still for an instant.

It's him you should be following, not his wife.

There's no point in shouting like that at the birds, you know.

They don't understand Italian. Shit!

He thinks there are Italian birds in Paris.

Shit! Sir?

I understand you.

But the operation must be swift and decisive.

Third floor.


You don't mind if we stay like this? No.

You're so silly.

You recognised yourself a few minutes ago.

"If I weren't married," you said.

Yes, I might have said that, but I am married.

It doesn't mean a thing.

You have to understand who you're married to.

I like him.


I'm going to try on my new dress. No. Don't move.

I want to dress you.

You're so strange. You want to be my maid now?

What difference does it make? It's my pleasure.

Please don't look at me. I'm embarrassed.

There's nothing wrong with it. I'm a woman just like you.

Yes, but you look at me in a way...

Turn around.

How beautiful!

I love Paris so much!

When Marcello sees it...


Violets? Violets, sir?

Do you want violets?

These are real Parma violets.

They're really from Parma? Absolutely.

Give me a bouquet.

Thank you.

Stand up, damned of the earth!

Stand up, damned of the earth Stand up, prisoners of hunger Reason thunders in its volcano This is the eruption of the end Of the past let us make a clean slate Enslaved masses, stand up, stand up The world is about to change its foundation We are nothing, let us be all

This is the final struggle Let us group together, and tomorrow The Internationale Will be the human race This is the final struggle Let us group together, and tomorrow The Internationale Will be the human race Inside.

Come. What is it?

Do you like real Parma violets? They're not for me.

Yes, they are.

You couldn't have known I'd be at the hotel.

They're for Giulia.

No, they're for you.


Anna! Giulia will be beautiful tonight.

Half past eight at the hotel.

I'm sad, you know.

We haven't made love since we've been in Paris.

Marcello, you've got bony knees.

Marcello?

Here's some news for you.

Anna and her husband have a house in Savoy.

The Professor's going tomorrow morning by car but Anna's staying in Paris for a few more days.

Then she'll join her husband and she wants us to visit them in the mountains.

She gave me the address.

That was kind, wasn't it?

She told me they have enormous beds in their villa that make terrible noises.

And she says there are massive forests nearby where no one ever goes.

Anna says...

Anna told me you can even make love in the snow.

Can you imagine the Professor wandering around naked in the woods?

Clerici, I was sure you were the new kind of Italian.

He doesn't exist yet, but we're creating him.

By repression? No, by example.

Force-feeding castor oil?

Throwing people in prison?

Torturing them? Blackmailing them? Anna.

That's enough. Calm down.

Clerici is a Fascist and I'm an Anti-Fascist.

We both knew. And we decided to have supper together all the same.

And get the wives drunk. The old Professor and his ex-pupil.

Giulia, what's wrong? Together again in a Chinese restaurant.

And I bet that you'll change your mind. God, I've drunk so much!

Impossible, Professor.

My husband makes a point of being naive.

I can't forget that Clerici was one of my best students.

Really? Tell me. What was Marcello like as a student?

Serious. Too serious. Shouldn't you be serious?

Really serious people are never serious.

Exactly!

Giulia, have you ever seen your husband laugh?

No, just a couple of times. That's his nature.

What's wrong with that? It's not my nature at all.

I've got an idea, Clerici. You should both stay here.

Living here you will understand a great many things.

It's a very important opportunity for you.

What do you know, Professor?

He's right. He's only in Paris to have some fun with his wife.

Did Giulia mention my idea to you?

We have a lovely guest room... With an enormous bed!

And you can go straight back to Italy from Savoy.

Thank you, but I promised to show Giulia Paris.

I'm half-drunk already!

Perfect. My husband's leaving tomorrow.

You can look round Paris and then we'll join him.

Marcello, be honest. Would you like us to go?

Of course I would. They're so kind.

If you want. Perhaps Giulia doesn't want to go.

No. If you don't like me, just say so.

Don't be embarrassing.

We'll definitely come. Right, Giulia? Yes.

Let's change places.

My head's spinning!

It's like that restaurant on the train...

...with that funny fat man.

Sorry.

Marcello, will you give me proof of your friendship?

We need to send a letter to one of our comrades in Rome.

Only you can help me.

It has to be delivered personally. There's no hurry.

When you get back from Savoy.

Would I risk prison?

Any one of my men would risk much more.

Professor, people would say you're doing this on purpose, to get me into trouble.

All things considered, Clerici, time in a Fascist prison might do you good.

Excuse me.

What is it?

Aren't you feeling well?

Watch out, sir.

I'm here to protect you and you want to kill me?

I don't want to kill anyone. Here. I don't want to carry it any more.

What is this all about?

Are you bailing out? No, it gets in my way.

It's so heavy. And I can't use it, I don't know how it works.

Sir... Comrade.

Look me in the eyes.

This is a war. If you quit, you're a deserter.

Everybody's thought of deserting at least once.

I wasn't thinking of that. Even me. Oh, yes.

But then I said to myself, "Manganiello, what are you thinking of?"

It isn't your country, it isn't your honour you're about to betray.

It's yourself.

And then...

...I slapped myself on the back, lit a cigar and said to myself, "Come on.

"Show some courage.

"Eh, Comrade Manganiello?"

Do or die.

It's freezing!

Hurry up. We're going dancing.

You'll make me fall!


Come on.

Thanks.

If you were what you say you are, you'd have agreed to take that letter and you'd have used it against our comrades in Rome.

Take a look. There's nothing there.

A little trick to put you to the test.


Make them stop.

Why?

They're both so pretty.

Well, what are you staring at?

This is Paris and I'm a fashionable woman, aren't I?

You're completely mad.

Come on! Let's dance!

Come on, everybody! Everybody!


He's leaving tomorrow at dawn by car. Wait.

And his wife? No.

Better that way.

See you in Rome.

Enjoy the rest of your holiday.


Who knows what you think of me, Professor?

I'm really drunk.

It's good to get drunk once in a while.

You won't believe this.

You make me nervous, like I'm sitting an exam.

You shouldn't be afraid if you're ready for it.

Listen. I'm leaving tomorrow with my husband.

You mustn't.

Please stay here. Do it for me.

Didn't you decide to go with Giulia and me?

Can't you see that your wife can't stand me?

Sorry. Giulia's stupid.

Can't you see she's drunk?

We've all lost our heads a bit tonight.

Besides, it's not true that she can't stand you.

She told me that she admires you.

What else did she say? That she finds you seductive.

I've changed my mind.

I'll stay in Paris. I'll stay with you. Are you pleased?

Anna! The Professor is propositioning me!

Help!

I'm so happy that in a minute I know I'm going to feel terrible.

Hi!


Damn. I'm really getting tired.

Manganiello. Yes, sir.

I've just had a fantastic dream. Have you?

I was blind and you were taking me to hospital in Switzerland for an operation.

Switzerland is beautiful.

And Professor Quadri did the operation.

The operation was a success, I got my sight back and I left with the Professor's wife.

She was in love with me.

Switzerland.

I remember in Milan, when I was a child, we used to sing a song.

Wait a minute.


In Africa after all that work and four dead men, we discovered it was no longer necessary.

And my superior, "You have ruined us all!

"You're all beasts!"

"Now, wait a second," I said. "We are men, not beasts."

Why the hell didn't the woman go back to bed?

Oh, God.

Love can certainly... What are you trying to say?

No... Nothing, sir.

No, I was saying that sometimes love can even perform miracles.

There!

Are you sure it's them?

Stay about 20 metres behind.

There's a car behind us.

So? Following us.

Why do you think that? Why are you so nervous?

Watch out!

There's something wrong with him.

Don't get out, please, I beg you!

Why not? I don't know, but I'm frightened.


We can't sit here like this.

Keep calm.

Wait here.

Luca.


I thought you were ill.

What is it? What do you want from me?


Look out, I'm shooting.


How disgusting. I've always said so.

Make me work in the shit, sure, but not with a coward.

For me, cowards, homosexuals and Jews, they're all the same thing.

If it were up to me, I'd stand them all against a wall.

Better still, eliminate them as soon as they're born.


Attention, please.

Attention, please.

His Majesty King Vittorio Emanuele accepted the resignation of His Excellency Benito Mussolini as head of the government, Prime Minister and Secretary of State.

He has named as head of the government, Prime Minister and Secretary of State His Excellency Marshal Pietro Badoglio.

You look so elegant with Mummy's hat on!

You've even got the fox fur that Mummy brought from Paris.

Well done, Marta!

King Vittorio Emanuele has accepted the resignation of His Excellency Benito Mussolini as head of the government, Prime minister and Secretary of State and has named as head of the government, Prime minister and Secretary of State His Excellency Marshal Pietro Badoglio.


A red apple.

Daddy! Ready?

Hail Mary, full of grace...

Hail Mary, full of grace...

...the Lord is with thee. ..the Lord is with thee.

Blessed art thou amongst women... Blessed art thou amongst women...

...and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.

...and blessed...Jesus.

Holy Mary, Mother of God...

Holy Mary, Mother of God...

...pray for us sinners...

...pray for us sinners...

...now and at the hour of our death. ...now and at the hour of our death.

Italo called.

Amen. Amen.

Time to sleep now. Come on, sleep now.

Italo? Yes. Italo.

What did he want? He's expecting you at the usual place.

Italo. After all this time.

Disgusting rabble.

Getting drunk because the King threw Mussolini out.

They supported him until yesterday.

I can't wait till we get them out of here.

Why see Italo? What's the point?

If he called it means he needs me, and I'm going.

I was always the one who took him around.

I took him everywhere.

He used to say that when I described things to him it was like seeing them with his own eyes.

Go and sleep.

Marcello, you need to be careful. Why?

What do you mean?

Nothing.

Wait, listen. What are you going to do now?

The same as everyone else who thought like me.

When there are so many of us, there's no risk.

I know, but I meant about the business with Quadri...

I don't understand what you're talking about.

In Paris, Anna, maybe because she wanted to get me away from you, told me you worked for the secret police.

And what did you say? That it wasn't important.

That I was your wife and I loved you.

And if you worked for them, it was the right thing to do.

But then, when she and her husband were killed, I was afraid.

And what do you think about it now?

I think that perhaps...

...it was an important step in your career.

That's right.

Marcello, don't go out!

They could hurt you.

There's no danger.

After all, what have I done? My duty.

But why do you want to go?

I want to see how a dictatorship falls.

Marcello!

Mummy! Where are you? I'm scared.

I'm here, darling. I'm coming.

Marcello.

You've still got something stuck to you.

Where? Here.

Oh, yes.


What about eating?

As long as there are cats around, I manage.

They say cat meat tastes like rabbit.

Too bad we didn't meet yesterday.

I had a cream cake at home.

With real cream? Yes, why not?

You need eggs. A friend of mine lives in the country.

He sends me bread too. Fresh eggs? Bread?

He sends me everything. My house is always well stocked.

Butter, fresh cheese, sometimes even a chicken.

What about potatoes? Potatoes too.

If you come to my house I'll make you an omelette.

An omelette? With jam.

You must be tired of eating cats.

Yes, I've eaten too many. And they're not so easy to find.

What do you do now? Eat mice.

Are there more mice with the cats gone?

Yes, but they're all skin and bones.

I don't live far from here.

Why don't you come and have dinner with me?

Is there a place to sleep? If you like.

You've got lovely shoes. Soft.

They were a present.

I got a present too. A Siamese cat.

Was he good? Too tough.

I have a pair of suede shoes. Do you want them?

And I have a nice oriental kimono. Like Madame Butterfly's.

You know who Madame Butterfly is?

Lino!

Is your name Lino? Me? Yes. Why?

You were a chauffeur, right?

Yes, but a long time ago. Yes.

You had a pistol, didn't you? Me? What do you mean?

And you're still alive.

I don't know you. What do you want from me?

What's that scar?

There was an accident. What accident?

Get your hands off me! Where were you?

What were you doing on March 25th 1917?

Me? I... Who are you? You're crazy.

What were you doing on March 25th 1917?

Leave me alone!

And October 15th 1938.

Where were you? What were you doing?

What were you doing at 4pm on October 15th 1938?

Where were you? What were you doing? I've got to know.

Murderer! Murderer!

He killed a man, a political exile, on October 15th 1938.

Professor Quadri!

Luca Quadri!

And his wife Anna Quadri.

He's a homosexual, a Fascist!

And his name is Pasqualino...

...Semirama!

Pasqualino Semirama!

Marcello, please, be quiet.

Marcello, where are you?

Fascist! No, Marcello!

He's a Fascist too. Right here.

What are you doing? This one's a Fascist.

Marcello, no. No, Marcello, please.

Why are you doing this? Marcello!

Italo Montanari! Fascist!

You're crazy. You're crazy.

Marcello, where are you? Come here.

Come here. Marcello.