The Lady from Shanghai (1947) Script

When I start out to make a fool of myself... there's very little can stop me.

If I'd known where it would end, I'd have never let anything start... if I'd been in my right mind, that is.

But once I'd seen her... once I'd seen her...

I was not in my right mind, for quite some time.

"Good evening," says I, thinking myself a very gay dog, indeed.

Here was a beautiful girl all by herself, and me... with plenty of time. Nothing to do but get myself into trouble.

Some people can smell danger. Not me.

I asked her if she'd have a cigarette.

It's my last, I've been looking forward to it. Don't disappoint me.

But I don't smoke.

That's how I found her. And from that moment on...

I did not use my head very much, except to be thinking of her.

But in the park, in those days... the rough young fellas used to be staging hold-ups and the like.

Help! Help!

However, these young fellas were not professionals.

And that's maybe the reason why I start out in this story... a little bit like a hero, which I most certainly am not.

The cab driver was waking up. He was okay.

So I borrowed his carriage to drive the lady home.

In a short while, she recovered herself... and brightened up, what with the things I told her... to get her mind off the scare she'd had and to set her thinking... as well, of the brave fella that had rescued her.

Rosalie, fair Rosalie.

A name I'm after calling you. Rosalie?

Why not? It's a gorgeous, romantical name entirely.

I'm Michael. You're a character.

I'm just a poor sailor man... and him with the Princess of Central Park at his side.

Princess Rosalie. I wonder now:

Where does the princess come from?

I don't know why she should tell you, but...

Well, her parents were Russian, White Russian.

You never heard of the place where she comes from.

Would Her Highness care to gamble? Gamble? She's done it for a living.

I'll bet you a dollar I've been to the place of your birth.

Zhifu. It's on the China coast, Zhifu.

The second wickedest city in the world.

The first? Macau. Wouldn't you say?

I would. I worked there.

You worked in Macau?

Here's your dollar. How do you rate Shanghai?

I worked there, too. Yeah, as a gambler?

Well... I hope you were luckier than tonight.

You need more than luck in Shanghai.

Do you know what? What?

I bet I could drive the car from down there inside with you.

There's a police car on the other road. Let's get out of the park.

The horse and cart will make it easy for the cops to find us.

You don't like them very much.

They can struggle without our doing their work for them.

Watch where you're going, Mac! Get that nag out of here!

Now the cops are bound to pick us up.

We'd best leave the cab here and walk.

You certainly don't like the police. I do not.

My car's right there in the garage, anyway.

Tell me, Michael... is there a reason why the police don't like you?

Well, they've never put me in jail in America.

You know, the nicest jails are in Australia.

The worst are in Spain.

What law did you break in Spain? I killed a man.

Just now, you almost killed a girl.

Is there a law against that? Try it. You won't like the jails here.

They put you in jail for murder here? I didn't think so.

A man killed his wife in Frisco last week.

She'd gone to the icebox for a bit of supper.

He thought she was a burglar, he said. He shot her five times in the head.

Number 47! He had a good lawyer.

I saw his picture in the paper. Bainbridge or something.

Bannister. Arthur Bannister.

It said he was the greatest criminal lawyer, the greatest criminal.

Some people think he is. Here's your car, ma'am.

Send the bill to my husband.

If you're a sailor, Michael, there's a job for you.

Would you like to work for me?

I-d like it.

I'm shipping out tomorrow.

So are we. To the West Coast, by way of the Canal.

We're short a man on the crew.

I'll make it worth your while.

Could it be this you're looking for?

You were smart to carry a gun, travelling alone in the park, but... if you knew you had the gun in your bag... why throw away the bag?

I meant for you to find it.

I don't know how to shoot.

It's easy. You just pull the trigger.

Some dame, ain't she?

Yeah, and some car.

Evening, Mr. Grisby.

Mr. Bannister sent it all the way from San Francisco... just so she could have it here.

Bannister? Arthur Bannister himself.

Some guys have all the luck.

Personally, I don't like a girlfriend to have a husband.

If she'll fool her husband, I figure she'll fool me.

Now, New York is not as big a city as it pretends to be... so I spent the next day in the hiring hall, waiting for a ship.

That way, big boob that I am, I thought I could escape her.

Don't eat that cigarette. It'll stunt your growth. Come here.

Excuse me.

I wonder if you could help me locate a Mr. O'Hara.

Michael O'Hara. Mike O'Hara?

You mean, Black Irish, the big harp that talks fancy?

I don't know him myself... Black Irish?

Yeah, I know him.

Joe. Call Mike O'Hara. A guy here wants to see him.

Michael O'Hara!

Please step to the bulletin board. A man wants to see you.

Shipmates? We was in Spain together.

They called him Black Irish after what he did... to them finks back in '39.

Mike's got a lot of blarney in him... but he knows how to hurt a man when he gets mad.

You were asking for me?

O'Hara? O'Hara.

You're what they call an able-bodied seaman?

Well, that's what they call it.

You ever work on a yacht? No.

I presume you can handle a speedboat? Well, I presume so.

Do you drink?

I beg your pardon? I asked you if you drink?

Whatever's set in front of me. Doesn't have to be wholesome... just as long as it's strong.

Do you drink habitually?

May I ask, mister, if you're extending an invitation?

Well, I guess it might as well be.

Now, Mr. O'Hara, if you'll show me to the nearest bar... we'll sit down together and discuss your coming to work for me.

My name is Bannister.


Boys, may I present Mr. Arthur Bannister, the world's greatest criminal lawyer.

He'll get you out of anything. Jake Björnson and Goldie, right?

Goldfish is the name. Glad to know you.

Mr. Bannister's wife sent him to get me. Isn't that right, Mr. Bannister?

Now Mr. Bannister's going to buy us all a few drinks... while I entertain myself by refusing to go to work for him.

You know, Mike saved my wife's life.

Here. Would you mind inserting these coins?

Number four.

That's all we like to hear.

Mike's quite a hero, quite a tough guy.

Mister, there ain't no such thing.

No such thing as a tough guy?

What's a tough guy?

I don't know.

A guy with an edge.

What makes him sing better than me? Something in here.

What makes it loud? A microphone. That's his edge.


A gun or a knife, a nightstick or a razor, something the other guy ain't got.

A little extra reach on a punch, a set of brass knuckles... a stripe on the sleeve, a badge that says cop on it, a rock... in your hand, or a bankroll in your pocket.

That's an edge, brother.

Without an edge, he ain't no tough guy.

You hear that, Black Irish? It's true.

Well, bear it in mind.

But what makes him sing prettier than you?

Naturally, someone had to take Mr. Bannister home.

I told myself I couldn't leave a helpless man lying unconscious in a saloon.

Well, it was me that was unconscious... and he was exactly as helpless as a sleeping rattlesnake.

Say, it's nice of you, Michael, to be so nice to me while I'm so drunk.


I wasn't sure you'd come.

I'm not staying.

You've got to stay.


Gonna be a real nice cruise.

First, the Panama Canal, then up the Mexican coast.

We need a bosun, Danny-boy.

Ever done any sailing? A bit of it.

I saw you last night at the garage, it was.

Somebody else, Danny-boy, not me.

Don't go. She needs you bad. You stay.

Mike, if you play your cards right, we can get a job for us both.

I think we'll take it.

And what was I, Mike O'Hara, doing on a luxury yacht... pleasure cruising in the sunny Caribbean Sea?

But it's clear now, I was chasing a married woman.

But that's not the way I wanted to look at it. No.

To be a real prize fathead like Mike O'Hara... you've got to swallow whole all the lies you can think up to tell yourself.

Our little expedition spent some weeks in the West Indies... dawdling around, seeing the sights, laying in supplies... and getting into more trouble.

Hi, on board the Cercie!

You there... why don't you go swimming?

I beg your pardon?

I said, why don't you go swimming?

I didn't bring a swimming suit along on the job, sir.

You ought to the next time.

There won't be a next time, sir. I'm quitting.

My trunks will fit you. You'll find them in the locker in the cabin.

I suppose you're wondering who I am, fella.

I think I saw you in New York. I flew in this morning, by way of Havana.

I'm George Grisby, you know. Grisby and Bannister.

Where is everybody? Gone ashore? Almost everybody.

My partner, too, Mr. Bannister? That's right.

And the lady?

Mr. Bannister tells me you once killed a man.

You are Michael, aren't you? That's right.

I'm very interested in murders.

Forgive me if I seem inquisitive, but where'd it happen?

At Murcia. How'd you do it?

Now, let me guess.

You did it with your hands, didn't you?

Does it ever bother you when you think about it?

What'd he do to you?


You just killed him for the fun of it?

He was a Franco spy. There was a war on at the time.

Then it wasn't murder, I suppose?

Tell me, would you do it again?

Would you mind killing another man?

I'd kill another Franco spy.

I was on a pro-Franco committee, fella... during the Spanish War.

Would you kill me if I gave you the chance?

I may give you the chance.


Before Li went ashore did he make up some lunch for me?

Yes, ma'am. Is there enough for two?

I'm sure I don't know. Ask Mrs. Bannister.

You ask her.

Would you like a good paste in the eye, sir?

I wish she'd ask me to go swimming.

She'll ask you.

You wait and see.

Will you help me?

Give me a cigarette.

I'm learning to smoke now.

Ever since that night in the park...

I've been getting the habit.

Do all rich women play games like this?

Call me Rosalie.

I didn't think you would do that. I didn't either.

You're scared, aren't you?

You're scared.

I'm scared, too.

You think you needed me to help you?

You're not that kind. If you need anything, you help yourself.

I'm not what you think I am. I just try to be like that.

Keep on trying. You might make it.

What are we scared of?

So long, kiddies!

Now he knows about us.

I wish I did.


Michael. Yes, sir.

Mr. Grisby has told me something I'm very sorry to hear.

"But if you kiss me"

Lover, this really concerns you more than anyone else.

"Don't take your arms away"

According to George here, Michael is anxious to quit.

Did you know about that, Lover? No, I didn't.

Shut up, George.

What's the matter, hours too long? No, sir.

How about the money?

I don't care about that. Money doesn't interest you?

Are you independently wealthy? I'm independent.

Of money?

Before you write that novel, you'd better learn something.

You've been travelling the world too much to find out about it.

That's good, Arthur.

Well, sir...

I've always found it very sanitary to be broke.

That's good, too, Arthur. Shut up, George.

Money cannot bring you health and happiness, etcetera.

Is that it?

Without money, I'd be flat on my back in the ward of a county hospital.

Look at this yacht. It once belonged to Jules Bachrach.

The great Bachrach, who kept me out of his club... because my mother was a Manchester Greek.

I got him on perjury.

He died bankrupt. And here I am.

Each man has his own idea of happiness, of course.

But money is what all of us have in common.

Take Bessie here.

She used to work for Bachrach. I pay her more, don't I, Bessie?

Yes, Mr. Bannister.

Her salary means happiness. It means a home... three rooms for two families.

Bessie's a grandmother, a widow. Only one of the boys works.

Right, Bessie? Yes, sir.

Yes, of course it is.

So Bessie goes to church every Sunday she gets off... and prays to God she'll never be too old to earn the salary I pay her.

You call yourself independent.

Come around and see me five years from now.

Aye, aye, sir.

Sing it for us again, Lover.

Why do you stand for that, Bessie? I'm quitting. Why don't you?

You heard him, Mr. Poet. I need the money.

Talk of money and murder.

I must be insane. Or else all these people are lunatics.

That's why I can't leave. That poor little child he married.

Somebody's got to take care of her.

"Don't hold me

"But if you hold me

"Don't take your arms away

"Comes a change of heart

"Please don't love me

"But, if you love me

"Then don't take your lips

"Or your arms, or your love


So remember, ladies, use Glosso Lusto.

It pleases your hair, pleases the man you love.

Will you help me?


Do you believe in love at all, Mrs. Bannister?

Give me the wheel.

I was taught to think about love in Chinese.

The way a Frenchman thinks about "laughter" in French?

The Chinese say, "It is difficult for love to last long.

"Therefore, one who loves passionately is cured of love in the end."

Now that's a hard way of thinking.

There's more to the proverb. "Human nature is eternal.

"Therefore, one who follows his nature keeps his original nature...

" the end."

Lover? Yes?

Aren't you glad I talked Michael into coming along, Lover?

He must have changed his mind about me.

Faith, Mr. Bannister, I've already told your wife.

I never make up my mind about anything at all... until it's over and done with.

I'd like to, but I can't deny that Mr. Bannister... did try to give his wife the things she wanted.

She'd said once that she liked picnics.

We were on our way up the Mexican coast... when he decided to stop and give her one.

Well, Mr. Bannister's picnic party was most typical of him.

A lot of trouble and a great deal of money went into it, but... it was no more a picnic than Bannister was a man.

When you hear what I got for you, you'll say you bought it cheap.

We've worked a lot of cases together. I'll be sorry if we make this the last.

There's a plot against my life, correct?

I'll be murdered. That's the information you're peddling?

I'm going to be killed.

Why, Sid, don't you think I know about it? All about it?

Now, leave me alone.

I want to enjoy myself.


I found out about Broome. I tried to tell you. He isn't a steward.

He isn't a good one. He's a detective.

My husband hires him to watch me. He wants to fix it so I'll never divorce him.

So he can divorce you? I haven't a cent.

He wants to cut me off without a cent. Does that matter? It shouldn't.

I told you, sweet, you don't know anything about the world.

Well, lately, I've been rounding out my education.

I'll say this much for you, Arthur, when you give a picnic, it's a picnic.

Time for another, Arthur? Time for another.

You know what? Michael still insists... What?

I beg your pardon?

I said, what?

Michael still insists on quitting.

Why shouldn't he?

No, I think Arthur ought to try and make him stay.

If he wants to go, let him.

But George likes to have him around.

Michael's so big and strong.

He makes a good bodyguard for you.

Isn't that what you said, George?

I don't need one. That's right.

Not even a big strong bodyguard? Don't make another drink.

With an Irish brogue? He's had enough.

George thinks Michael's fallen for you.

And that makes me unhappy, George hopes.

But George is wrong again.

Now, Arthur, I didn't say anything about Michael and Elsa.

Make me another drink, George.

Another Grisby special coming up.

You know, you're a stupid fool, George.

You ought to realise, I don't mind it a bit... if Michael's in love with my wife.

He's young. She's young.

He's strong.

She's beautiful.

Sit down, darling.

Where's your sense of humour?

I don't have to listen to you talk like that.

Yes, you do, Lover.

Now, Arthur, you leave Elsa alone.

Come to think of it... why doesn't Michael want to work for us?

Why should he?

Why should anyone want to live around us?

Where's his sense of adventure?

Excuse me, sir. He's over there eating.

Tell Michael to step over here for a moment.

Aye, sir.

Hey, Mike.

They want to see you over there, Mr. Bannister and them.

Well, Michael.

Well, Mr. Bannister.

My wife's lost her sense of humour.

You've lost your sense of adventure. Sit down. Have a drink.

Give him a drink, George, and don't look so shocked.

Michael may not be in the social register, but then... neither are you, anymore.

Is this what you do for amusement in the evenings:

Sit around toasting marshmallows and call each other names?

Sure, if you're so anxious for me to join the game, I'd be glad to.

I can think of a few names I'd like to be calling you, myself.

But, Michael, that isn't fair.

You're bound to lose the contest.

We'll have to give you a handicap, Michael.

You should know what George knows about me... for instance, if you really want to call me names.

And, Michael, if you think George's story is interesting... you ought to hear the one about how Elsa... got to be my wife.

Do you want me to tell him what you've got on me, Arthur?

You know, once, off the hump of Brazil...

I saw the ocean so darkened with blood, it was black... and the sun fainting away over the lip of the sky.

We put in at Fortaleza... and a few of us had lines out for a bit of idle fishing.

It was me who had the first strike.

A shark it was, and then there was another, and another shark again... till all about the sea was made of sharks... and more sharks still, and no water at all.

My shark had torn himself from the hook... and the scent, or maybe the stain it was, and him bleeding his life away... drove the rest of them mad.

Then the beasts took to eating each other.

In their frenzy, they ate at themselves.

You could feel the lust of murder, like a wind stinging your eyes... and you could smell the death reeking up out of the sea.

I never saw anything worse, until this little picnic tonight.

And do you know, there wasn't one of them sharks... in the whole crazy pack that survived.

I'll be leaving you now.

George, that's the first time anyone ever thought enough... of you to call you a shark.

If you were a good lawyer, you'd be flattered.

Where's Mrs. Bannister? I'm sure I don't know, sir.

She adores it here in Acapulco.

So do I, but...

It's nice and quaint, but I want to go back to Frisco.

Mind walking with me, fella?

I know all the best places. You might enjoy it.

I want to make you a proposition.

Beautiful, isn't it?

The beach, you mean, or the tourists? Everything.

There's a fair face to the land, surely. But you can't hide the hunger and guilt.

It's a bright, guilty world.

Darling, of course you pay me.

What's your guess, Michael? Think the world's coming to an end?

There was a start to the world sometime, so I guess there'll be a stop.

It's coming, you know. Huh?

Oh, yeah, it's got to come.

First, the big cities... then maybe even this.

It's just got to come.

I prefer to be somewhere else when it does.

I will be.

That's what I need you for, Michael, to see to it that I'm not around.

How would you like $5,000? What?

That's what I said, $5,000, fella.

What do I have to do for it?

I'll fill in the details later. Meanwhile, think it over, Michael.


It's yours. All you have to do is kill somebody.

Who, Mr. Grisby? I'm particular who I murder.

Good boy!

You know, I wouldn't like to kill just anybody.

Is it somebody I know? Yeah. But you'll never guess.

I give UP-

It's me.

I'm perfectly sober, Michael.

I'm willing to pay $5,000 if the job is well done.

This is a straightforward business proposition.

I want you to kill me.

So long, fella.

Michael. Yes?

You talked to George yesterday. I did.

Did he say anything about us? He's afraid the world's going to explode.

He talked about suicide.

I've thought of that sometimes.


Do you think it's wrong, Michael?

I don't know.

Would you kill yourself if you had to?

I don't know.

I've looked at those pills so many times. Pills?

The ones my husband takes to kill the pain... and wondered if enough of them would kill my pain.

The pain of just being alive?

Mr. Grisby wants to be cured of that pain. He wants me to cure him.

Mr. Grisby wants me to kill Mr. Grisby.

I'm sure he's out of his mind. He's not sane. Neither is Arthur.

Your husband can take care of himself.

What do you want? Beautiful moon. Nice night for it... ain't it, Mr. O'Hara?

You didn't answer me, Mr. O'Hara.

You ought to speak when you're spoken to.

I'd hate to have to report you to the lady's husband.

I said it's a nice night for it.

Would you care to dance with me?

Stop crying-

I can't stand for you to cry. Do you know what Broome's been doing?

Spying. Spying on you.

Sure, I'm going to take you where there aren't any spies.

Michael, where?

Along way off, some one of the far places.

Far place? We're in one of them now.

Running away doesn't work. I tried it.

Everything's bad, Michael. Everything.

You can't escape it or fight it.

You've got to get along with it, deal with it, make terms.

You're such a foolish knight errant, Michael.

You're big and strong, but you just don't know... how to take care of yourself.

So how could you take care of me?

If you'll so pardon me this intrusion... there's a couple of police officers out here.


I don't speak their language, see?

And they wants me to identify this guy. What's the Spanish for "drunken bum"?

It was early October when we made San Francisco... and dropped anchor across the bay from the city, in Sausalito.

It had been a most interesting cruise.

All very rich and rare and strange.

But I had had no stomach for it.

To begin with, living on a hook takes away your appetite.

You've no taste for any pleasure at all, but the one that's burning in you.

But even without an appetite...

I'd learned it's quite amazing how much... a fool like me can swallow.

Please, Michael, be careful.

The car's down there.

Mr. Bannister's waiting to take you into the city... to San Francisco. But you're not going with him.

You're going with me.

You think I can't take care of you... and I'd be after running off with you to an island to eat berries and goat's milk.

And I'd have to take in washing to support you.

Hello, kiddies.

There's George.

What would you say to $5,000, to get us started?

We've got a date with a couple of beers, fella.

Arthur was asking for you.

He wondered where you'd gone.

I won't tell him.

You didn't answer my question.

$5,000. Goodbye, Michael.

Couldn't we start on that?

Would you have to take in washing on $5,000?

Sit down.

I suppose you're wondering what's behind my little proposition.

It's none of your business, but since we're what you call "partners in crime"...

I'll tell you that the firm of Bannister & Grisby is insured... against the death of either partner.

That means, if one of us dies the other stands to get a lot of money.

Thanks. Now, leave us alone. Yes, sir.

Like some other people we both know, I'm not very happily married.

And another thing, frankly...

I don't want to be within 1,000 miles of that city... or any other city when they start dropping those bombs.

Michael, there's been a suggestion we drive you into town.

Want a beer before you go?

I'll be waiting with Mrs. Bannister in the car.

Better meet me in my office. Make it late tonight.

What for? $5,000.

That ought to take a girl and a sailor on quite a nice little trip.

I'll meet you at your office.

There's a little paper I'd like you to sign.

It's nothing very binding or important, really... just a confession of murder.

Here's to crime!

She say, meet you at aquarium, 9:00, before many people there.

The aquarium?

If you ever need a good lawyer, Michael, let me know.

"I, Michael O'Hara...

" order to live in peace with my God, do freely make the following confession.

"On the evening of August 9..." That's tomorrow night, fella.

"...I shot and killed Mr. George Grisby...

"...placing his dead corpse in the Sausalito bay."

Just a minute, sir.

What you are reading there, am I suppose to have written it?

It's your confession.

This is the easiest $5,000 you'll ever earn, fella.

Why don't you do it yourself?

Commit suicide? Me? Don't be silly.

Suicide is against the law.

We're not going to break the law.

This is going to be murder, and it's going to be legal.

I want to live, but I want to vanish.

I want to go away and change my name, and never be heard of again.

But that costs money, and it isn't easy nowadays.

If they're looking for you, they'll find you, unless they think you're dead.

They'll find you even on the smallest island in the South Seas.

That's where I'm going to be, fella, on that smallest island.

I'll mail the rest to you after the murder.

I want to live on that island in peace.

That won't be possible unless the world is satisfied I don't exist.

You know, the law is a funny thing, fella.

The State of California will say I'm dead, officially dead... if somebody'll say they murdered me.

That's what I'm paying you for.

To murder you? To say you did.

Well, what happens to you really?

Well, I disappear. What happens to me?


That's the joker.

You swear you killed me, but you can't be arrested.

That's the law. Look it up for yourself.

There's no such thing as homicide, unless they find a corpse.

It just isn't murder if they don't find a body.

According to the law, I'm dead... if you say you murdered me.

But you're not a murderer unless I'm dead.

Silly, isn't it?

I've never seen an aquarium.

Would you show me about?

I couldn't think where else we could meet.

Only tourists and schoolchildren come. And lovers.

Michael! Fair Rosalie!

Do you love me? I do.

Do you still want to take me away with you?

Why do you ask that? Tell me where we'll go.

Will you carry me off into the sunrise?

Don't torment me. I'll take care of you. You won't starve.

I don't care where it is, Michael, just take me there.

Take me, quick.

Take me.


For heaven's sakes, come along. Come on.

Come on. Come on. Can't I look? I want to see.

I don't want you to worry about us. I'm making arrangements.

The things you said yesterday about money.

You didn't sound like you.

You're not going to try anything foolish, are you?

I'm afraid so. Something very foolish indeed.

"I, Michael O'Hara, in order to live in peace with my God...

" freely make the following confession."

Read the last part, that explains the whole of it.

"We arrived at the boat landing at approximately 10:20.

"Mr. Grisby said he heard a sound.

"He said he was frightened of a hold-up and asked me to get the gun, just in case.

"I reached in and got the gun, but I'd hardly taken hold of it...

"...when the gun went off by accident in my hand...

"...and I saw that Mr. Grisby was all covered with blood.

"It took me a minute to realise that Mr. Grisby was dead.

"To realise that I, Michael O'Hara, had killed him."

But I don't understand, Michael.

What were you doing with George in Sausalito?

It says Mr. Grisby wants to spend the night on a yacht... and asked me to drive him there.

And that's where I kill him.

You see, with the rough tide there is in the bay... they wouldn't recover the body, if there was one.

You don't understand, darling.

He isn't dead yet, Grisby's alive.

He won't be murdered until tonight. Is that foolish enough for you?

My husband wrote that thing and got you to sign it for him.

It's one of those famous Bannister tricks.

No, it's Grisby's idea.

It seems Mr. Grisby wants to disappear... and this is a scheme of his to get himself declared dead.

There's more to it than that, Michael. I don't know what, but there's more.

It's a trap of some kind.

You meet George tonight, just as he arranged.

Go with him to Sausalito and do whatever crazy... nonsense he asks you to do. As long as no one's hurt it won't matter.

But don't let him out of your sight.

Maybe George isn't as big a fool as he seems to be... but I'll swear my husband's behind this whole thing.

Michael, why did you let yourself get dragged into it?

Sure because I'm a fool, a deliberate, intentional fool... and that's the worst kind. Or didn't you know?

Yes, my beloved, my beloved fool.

I know.

I don't think there's anybody home, just Broome.

Mr. Bannister's in the city, and Mrs. Bannister, I think, went to the movies.

Better wait for me in the kitchen. Okay.

Make some coffee, we'll both need it.

I've got things to attend to.


I wonder, am I the only one that's on to you and her?


Nobody else seems to guess you're sweet on her.

That ought to be worth extra, but I'll throw it in for the same price.

What are you selling? I can shut up, that's what I'm selling.

You see, I'm a snoopy kind of a guy.

I find things out. I get around.

I got around one afternoon in Sausalito.

I overheard a little conversation down in Mexico.

I found out about a little plot of yours.

You wouldn't want me to say nothing about how you're framing Michael.

Frame him for a murder you're going to commit.

Well, let's talk it over tomorrow.

When you'll be playing dead and someone we both know is really dead?

No, thanks, Mr. Grisby. We'll settle our account, right now.

All right, Broome... if you insist.

What are you doing? Hello, Michael.

I'm sorry. You drive.

Were you shooting a gun?

I was just doing a little target practice.

That's what you're going to say, isn't it... when you shoot the gun down by the boat landing?

People come out of the bar to see what happened.

You're going to say, "I was just doing a little target practice."

Of course, really, you're supposed to have shot me.

And later, when nobody's looking... you're supposed to have thrown my corpse into the bay.

Look out!

What happened back there?

Anybody hurt?

Kind of banged it up, mister. Yes.

It's our fault. Here's my card. Let me know if there's any damage.

Looks like you got damage.

Your hand's cut bad! Really, it's all right.

Well, goodnight. Goodnight, Mr. Grisby.


Did he get a good look at us? What?

The truck driver. He'll make a good witness.


He'll testify he saw us just before the murder.

Broome, are you ill?

I've got some lead in me, where it hurts.

I'll call a doctor. Did already.

Trouble is, the doc will report the police.

The police will want to know who was the certain party who shot me.

Don't worry, he'll get his.

There's going to be a murder. Ain't going to be a fake murder this time.

Somebody's going to be killed.

You mean... Yeah, your husband.

Maybe he's the one who'll be knocked off.

What? Could be.

You better get down to his office, if you want to do anything about it.

What are you doing?

Getting blood all over the floor of the car.

My blood. It's perfect.

If you'd shot me, there would be blood, fella. See?

Now, when you get back to the garage, start washing out the bloodstains.

You're trying to wipe out the evidence, see?

But be careful not to do such a good job that they can't analyse the stains.

You can just try to wash that out.

Get the gun. It's in the glove compartment.

Good. Come on now. Let's go.

Be sure enough people in the bar get a good look at you.

They're bound to ask about the shooting.

Just say you're doing a little target practice.

Be sure and wait until you hear the speedboat get away.

Understand? Where are you going?

Give me that cap!

What are you laughing at? Wait and see.

Get the law! Get back in the house!

You come back in the house. It's none of your business!

Why don't you let people get some sleep around here?

What are you doing with that gun?

I was just doing a little target practice.

Where are you going with it now? Is he drunk?

He's soused!

San Rafael, please.

Hello. I want to speak to Mrs. Bannister.


It's me, Broome.

Get down to the office. Montgomery Street.

You was framed.

Grisby didn't want to disappear. He just wanted an alibi.

And you're it. You're the fall guy.

Grisby's gone down there to kill Bannister, now.




Stop that car! Stop the car!

Am I too late?

For what? To save Mr. Bannister.

Who? Arthur Bannister.

That's blood, ain't it? Sure, it's blood.

It's all over the seat. Where?

Let go of me! There's blood all over him.

Your name? Michael O'Hara.

Listen to this paper I found on the sidewalk.

I want to know about Mr. Bannister.

Go ahead, Joe.

"I, Michael O'Hara, in order to live in peace with my God..."

Yes, Michael?

You were asking for me? Pardon me, please.

"...freely make the following confession." Confession!

"On the evening of August 9, I shot and killed George Grisby."

Then it wasn't you that was killed, it was him, Grisby!

Hello, darling. Have you heard the news? George has been murdered.

He was found here in the street with Michael's cap in his hand.

Michael is going to need a good lawyer.

Well, it's my own fault... but that's how I got into it, big boob that I am.

I began to ask myself if I wasn't out of my head entirely.

The wrong man was arrested. The wrong man was shot.

Grisby was dead and so was Broome.

And what about Bannister?

He was going to defend me in a trial for my life.

And me, charged with a couple of murders I did not commit.

Either me, or the rest of the whole world is absolutely insane.

You know my associate, Mr. Seeley. Hello.

He's arranged for your pass into the jail. It's in the building.

Should he take you? I'd rather go by myself.

All right, Seeley. I'll join you in the office.


Excuse me, Mrs. Bannister.

You want to be alone with Michael?

It was your idea. Morning, Bannister.

Morning, Judge. Is your boy still in the hospital?

Been home since Tuesday. Well, that's fine, Judge.

Wasn't it your idea? Yes, Lover?

Oh, I beg your pardon.

Wasn't it your idea?

Isn't it your idea to save Michael from the gas chamber?

Arthur Bannister's the only one who can do it.

What do you think? Hello, Galloway!

Hi, Bannister, how's tricks?

You know our district attorney, dear. How do you do?

Hello, Mrs. Bannister.

I was the murdered man's partner. The other victim was my servant.

If I defend Michael, any jury will figure I have reason to believe he's innocent.

And you have reason to believe that Michael is innocent?

I hear that Galloway is going to say that Michael took George's corpse... into the city in our speedboat.

We can prove he didn't. George couldn't have taken it.

Why not? How could it get back?

Back where? To the yacht, naturally.

The speedboat couldn't have driven itself. Or maybe it was George's ghost.

Maybe the boat just drifted back.

No, Lover.

Michael has got to plead excusable homicide.

But you can prove he didn't do it with his gun.

They know it wasn't Michael's gun that killed George.

The gun that did kill George can't be found, Lover, so we can't prove... that Michael didn't shoot him.

And it was Michael's gun that killed Broome.


Michael is going to need everything that the greatest... living trial lawyer can do for him.

Our good district attorney over there has worked up a beautiful case.

The truck driver, the fat saloon keeper down at the docks... they'll be effective witnesses. He'll know how to handle them.

And then there's this crazy confession.

But Michael has an explanation.


You think it's funny? Funny?

You mean that story about how George hired Michael to kill George?

To pretend to kill him.


Why would George want to disappear?

Michael said something about partnership insurance.

What? Partnership insurance.

Which George wanted to collect? Yes.

George wanted everybody to think he was dead?


Dead, so that he could collect the insurance?


Well, if he was dead, how could he collect?

Now, Lover... if your Irishman doesn't want to go to the gas chamber... he's going to have to trust me.

But you, do you trust him?

I wouldn't trust him with my wife.

You want to make sure he doesn't get off, don't you?

I've never lost a case, remember?


my wife might think he was a martyr.

I've got to defend him.

I haven't any choice.

And neither have you.


It looks bad for me. Isn't that what your husband says?

Whatever else he is, Arthur's a marvellous lawyer.

You've got to trust him, Michael. Why should I trust him?

Because it's your only chance.

Because I want you to.

That'll have to do for a reason.

Why did you kill Broome? What?

Don't be afraid to tell me. I just want to know.

It was Grisby who killed Broome. He was going to murder your husband.

George kill Arthur? What could he possibly gain from it?

He couldn't get a divorce. What?

He wanted people to think he was dead so he could get away from his wife.

Wife? But that's impossible. Why?

George didn't have a wife.

He wasn't married.

And because of that, you can be fairly certain of the month.

Mrs. Bannister, I saved a seat for you.

Would you gentlemen please move over?

Thank you. Sit down!

I just want to look at her.

I object! The question calls for the operation of the officer's mind.


Very well. In the interest of saving time, we'll proceed... as I'm sure Officer Peters is most anxious to go home... to his wife and family before returning to duty.

Now then, Officer Peters, except for the blood, the clothes were dry.

Yes, sir. They were dry.

The defendant stated in his confession he threw the body into the bay.

Your Honour, the district attorney isn't cross-examining.

He's making speeches. That isn't so!

I move for the declaration of mistrial... on the grounds that the jury is being prejudiced.

These are some of the great Bannister's trial tactics, in appeal for sympathy.

The district attorney is beginning to get vicious.

When you two gentlemen get over your argument, tell me who won.

Then I'll decide on the objection.

Objection sustained.

Your witness, Mr. Bannister.

No questions, except, yes...

Officer Peters, I don't wish to keep you from your wife and children... any more than the district attorney, who was so concerned about them... but I would like to ask you one question:

Officer Peters, have you a wife and children?

Well... no.

Thank you. You may step down.

Call your next witness.

I call...

Arthur Bannister.

It's certainly unusual, Your Honour, to put a defence attorney... on the witness stand.

But I'm confident that my client will make no objection.

Galloway can't make Bannister testify against his own client, right?

This trial keeps getting screwier all the time!

Your Honour, I wouldn't take this step... if there were more effective means of establishing the evidence I'll bring forward.

With my client's express permission...

Mr. Bannister will take the stand.

I've never seen anything like that before.

I thought he was smart. They don't come smarter.

Maybe he's the bad guy? Maybe he's wrong?

Maybe he killed him? You ain't kidding!

Do you solemnly swear to tell the whole truth, so help you God?

I do.

State your name.

Arthur Bannister.

Mr. Bannister, you are a member of the Bar.

I am.


And have been...


And have been for a number of years.

That is correct.

The defendant, Michael O'Hara, worked as a crew member on your yacht.


Did he seem happy in his job?

I beg your pardon?

You had your back turned... Did he seem happy in his job?

Reasonably so.

Did you get that answer? I did.

Reasonably so.

As a matter of fact, wasn't he threatening to quit?


Did you know, Mr. Bannister, that right after the murders...

Right after the murders, we found the defendant's bags packed... and everything put away in readiness for an immediate departure?


In your experience as an attorney, would this not indicate premeditation?

The district attorney is making speeches...

Premeditation and plan for flight? Making speeches, drawing conclusions!

I'm not drawing conclusions! You are!


He is asking improper questions... Your Honour, I think...

I ask Your Honour to declare a mistrial.



No further questions.

Would Your Honour kindly explain to the jury that... since the district attorney has placed me in the position of a witness...

I am permitted, as the defence attorney, to cross-examine myself?

These are more of the persuasive Mr. Bannister's trial tactics.

The jury is so instructed.

Question: Mr. Bannister, did the defendant say anything... as to why he had taken the job?

Answer: Yes, Mr. Bannister.

He reminded Mr. Bannister that Mr. Bannister... had to go to the seaman's hiring hall and use his persuasive powers... to convince the defendant to take the job.


Can you think of anything else, Mr. Bannister... that is relevant to this inquiry?

I found this boy to be clean cut, courageous, resourceful... honest, hardworking.

Question: Now, Mr. Bannister, please answer the question, yes or no.

Can you think of anything else that is relevant to this issue?



Very well. Thank you, Mr. Bannister. You may step down.

Your Honour, I have a subpoena for a witness who is present in the courtroom.

May I have the bailiff serve it at this time?

Bailiff, you will serve the subpoena.

I call Mrs. Arthur Bannister.

She doesn't have to, does she?

I don't know.

Don't be silly. Sure, she's got to take it.

Well, who says there is?

Sit down and mind your own business.

Raise your right hand.

Do you solemnly swear to tell the whole truth, so help you God?

I do.

State your name. Mrs. Arthur Bannister.

Mrs. Bannister, did you ever have guards... to police your house, or the yacht on which you just made a cruise?



We never felt the need of it.

You have no children, have you?

I have no children. You have no children.

So you weren't concerned about kidnappers, is that correct?

That is correct.

There was a man employed in your house... and on your husband's yacht named Sidney Broome?


You've known Mr. Broome for several years?


Would it surprise you if I were to tell you that the detective... hired by your husband in divorce cases was Sidney Broome?

The man who was employed in your house as a butler... and on your yacht as a steward, and who was subsequently murdered.

I object! Does the counsel deny that...


Does counsel deny that the butler Broome was the detective Broome... used by him in divorce cases?

Mrs. Bannister, can you think of any reason why your husband would want... to hire a divorce detective other than to watch you?

I object! Objection sustained.

Didn't you and your husband... have an argument about your showing an infatuation for O'Hara?

We did not.

Isn't it a fact that the defendant, O'Hara, made advances to you?

And told you he was infatuated with you?

He was very respectful.

Speak up, Mrs. Bannister.

He was very respectful.

And I think he was fond of me.

Just what is your definition of "fond," Mrs. Bannister?

As a matter of fact, you and Michael O'Hara... have kissed each other, haven't you?

To name one occasion, you were seen in the aquarium of this city... kissing each other!

Do you deny that?


No further questions. Your witness, Mr. Bannister.

No questions.

The State Department has refused any comment.

Here in San Francisco, the fate of "Black Irish" O'Hara... notorious waterfront agitator, whose trial for murder... has held the front pages these recent weeks... remains undecided, as the jury, already out seven hours... has still to return a verdict. The "Black Irish" case, according to...

How long do they take usually? You can't ever tell about a jury.

Excuse me, Your Honour.


The jury's coming out now.

Thank you, Officer McNulty.

By the way...

what has Elsa been telling you?

Did you imagine that I didn't know she's been coming to see you?

She asked me to trust you. But you don't.

The jury's reached its verdict.


Because I know you wanted me to be convicted.

Now that it's too late for you to do anything about it...

I might as well tell you, this is one case I've enjoyed losing.

I'm coming to see you in the death house, Michael. Every day.

Our little visits will be great fun.

I'm going to ask for a stay of execution. And I really hope it will be granted.

I want you to live as long as possible before you die.

You're talking kind of tough, aren't you, Mr. Bannister?

I've got an edge. I know you're going to the gas chamber.

Don't be so sure.

I know the killer.

I know who murdered Grisby.


Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, have you arrived at a verdict?

We, the jury, have...

Wait a minute!

He took poisoned pills!

Take him to my chambers!

I just talked to the doctor. He's coming.

Keep him on his feet.

We need help. I can't control this crowd by myself.

The way I understand it, he'll be all right if we keep him moving.

I need help in there!

If he goes to sleep, he's done for. Done for?

I need at least two of your officers to control the crowd in my courtroom.

I'll try and get the reporters.

Reporters? You'll do no such thing.

Come in. I'll see the reporters right now!

We have to prepare a statement. That's it, Manny, keep him walking!

All right, Mr. Galloway.

No pictures, please, now!

Stay close together now, while I escort you out to dinner.

Sure, it's Mike. What can we do?

We've got to think of something.

That's another jury from another trial.

Please do not talk about the case... outside of the jury room. The judge hopes that you will arrive at... a verdict as soon as possible.

That way! Come on. There he goes!

My goodness, my window!

My chessboard! McNulty! Officer!

I expect a full report from you.

Get off the floor, Officer! No pictures!

What happened? Hello?

That woman's too nice looking to have stolen all that jewellery.

Jury duty is such a responsibility, don't you think?

You were told not to talk about the case.

Now don't let it happen again. All right, keep moving!

That way!

Did you see a man come by?

She's looking for someone.

One? Yes.

Where is the Westerner sitting?

Where is the phone? Backstage.

Where? Over there.

Please connect to Li Gong. Where is Li Gong?

Hello, Li? Hello. This is Li Gong.

Please help me.

I will send someone over to help you.

Why did you do it, Michael? I didn't. I'm not guilty.

You mean the pills?

I saw you begging me with your eyes to swallow them.

You didn't mean for me to take them all. So I held some back, but not enough.

I took too many of the pills. I'm faint.

And now what?

I got to find something... Don't you know they'll catch you?

Where will you hide? I must find that gun.

Gun? What gun?

I've got to find the gun that killed Grisby. It'll prove I'm innocent.

I've phoned our servant, Li.

We're trying to arrange something, some place to take you.

Just wait here quietly and watch the play.

The police.

Put your arms around me.

Don't move!

Don't you move! I told you not to move, I mean it.

I found the gun.

You killed Grisby. Yes.

You're the killer.

Go out there.

I was right. She was the killer. She killed Grisby.

Now she was going to kill me.

Li and his friends smuggled me out in the dark... and hid me where I'd be safe from the cops, not safe from her.

One of the Chinese worked in an amusement park.

It was closed for the season.

An empty amusement park makes a good hideout... and she wanted me hidden.

Well, I came to...

in the Crazy House.

And for a while there, I thought it was me that was crazy.

After what I'd been through, anything crazy at all seemed natural.

But now, I was sane on one subject: her.

I knew about her.

She'd planned to kill Bannister, she and Grisby.

Grisby was to do it for a share of Bannister's money.

That's what Grisby thought.

Of course, she meant to kill Grisby, too, after he'd served his purpose.

Poor howling idiot. He never even did that.

He went and shot Broome and that was not part of the plan.

Broome might have got to the police before he died.

And if the cops traced it to Grisby, and the cops made Grisby talk... he'd spill everything, and she'd be finished.

She had to shut up Grisby, but quick... and I was the fall guy.

In here. We're less likely to be heard.

I thought it was only your husband you wanted to kill.

Why don't you try to understand?

George was supposed to take care of Arthur... but he lost his silly head and shot Broome.

After that, I knew I couldn't trust him.

He was mad.

He had to be shot.

And what about me? We could have gone off together.

Into the sunrise?

You and me? Or you and Grisby?

I love you.

"One who follows his nature keeps his original nature in the end."

But haven't you heard ever of something better to follow?


I knew I'd find you two together.

If I hadn't, Elsa, I might have gone on playing it your way.

You didn't know that, but you did plan for me to follow you.

You've been drinking.

I presume you think that if you murder me here... your sailor friend will get the blame, and you'll be free to spend my money.

Well, dear, you aren't the only one who wants me to die.

Our good friend, the district attorney... is just itching to open a letter that I left with him.

The letter tells all about you, Lover... so you'd be foolish to fire that gun.

With these mirrors, it's difficult to tell. You are aiming at me, aren't you?

I'm aiming at you, Lover!

Of course, killing you is killing myself.

It's the same thing.

But, you know, I'm pretty tired of both of us.

You know, for a smart girl, you make a lot of mistakes.

You should have let me live.

You're going to need a good lawyer.

He and George...

and now me.

Like the sharks, mad with their own blood... chewing away at their own selves.

It's true.

I made a lot of mistakes.

You said the world's bad. We can't run away from the badness... and you're right there. But you said we can't fight it.

We must deal with the badness, make terms.

And didn't the badness deal with you... and make its own terms in the end, surely?

You can fight, but what good is it?


Do you mean we can't win? No, we can't win.

Give my love to the sunrise.

We can't lose either, only if we quit.

And you're not going to?

Not again.

I'm afraid.

Michael, come back here!

Michael, please!

I don't want to die!

I don't want to die!

I went to call the cops but I knew she'd be dead... before they got there.

And I'd be free.

Bannister's note to the DA would fix it.

I'd be innocent officially.

But that's a big word, "innocent." "Stupid" is more like it.

Everybody is somebody's fool.

The only way to stay out of trouble is to grow old... so I guess I'll concentrate on that.

Maybe I'll live so long that I'll forget her.