The Mother (2003) Script

I'm gonna be sweating like an old donkey.

You know how cold you get in London.


Come over to this side.

-Can I help you with that? -Thank you very much.

Cross the road and turn right.

-Which one is it? -That one, I think.

Come on, they invited us.

It's us.

Hi. Sorry.

-Hello. -Hello, dear.

-God, you're early. -Not too early, I hope?

No, come in. It's great to see you at last. Bobby's been so looking forward to this.

-Just turn it off! -No!

-Mind your backs. -Oh, dear.

Mind your fronts, mind your minds and manners.

I'm breathing dust in.

Everybody hold their breath for 10 minutes.

It's like Buckingham Palace.

Thank you.

Hello, little ones.

-Have they got any presents? -Who are they?

For God's sake, Rosie.

What a lovely house.

That's your gran and granddad. Say hello.

-Hello, sweetheart. -Harry.

Goodness, you've grown. I wouldn't have recognized you.

-Hello, Rosie. -Hello, granddad.

Shall I take that?

-Do you like jigsaws? -Yeah.

-What are you listening to? -What?

-What are you listening to? -What?

You have a broken face.

That's not very nice.

How long are you staying?

We don't know yet, dear. We haven't decided.

Great.

Can you do the bedroom....

That's a castle in wales.

Rosie, come on. Harry.

How graceful you are, my dear.

And elegant. Always like a picture.

Toots, you're always so sweet. I'm really late.

Where is he then? Still in bed?

Harry, for God's sake, stop it! Sorry.

He had an 8:30. He'll be here in a second.

-I hope he's not overdoing it. -We're all doing that.

Have you got a little job?

-Didn't he tell you? -No.

-I've just opened a shop. -Selling what?

Cashmere. Anything you can get made out of gorgeous cashmere, look.

Feel these sweaters. Absolutely gorgeous.

My goodness. Yes, it's very soft.

-You girls, you're doing everything now. -Pop into the shop if you want.

Hello, darling.

Bobby.

Well, you got here okay. You're nice and early, too.

Listen, I've just popped back, really, just to say hello.

Aren't you spending the day with us?

I can't. I'd love to, but I've got wall-to-wall bloody meetings all day.

-Everybody wants him. -Yeah, that's it, mom.

Everything's going well then?

-Business is good? -Business is at its busiest, really.

-I've got to go. -We've got too busy to--

I'll see you tonight, okay? We're going to Paula's.

She's cooking, so watch out. All right, bye.

Look, make yourselves at home. Use anything you want.

There's some basil Risotto in the fridge.

-Can I get a lift? -As long as you don't talk to me.

Most of the time you criticize me for not talking.

Because you only talk to me when I'm doing something else.

All right, mate, you want something, do you?

-Yes, bye. -Bye.

-Yes, I know. -Are you?

Stop it. He's slow enough as it is.

Michelangelo took less time at the bloody sistine chapel.

Yes, but this'll last longer.

Basil Risotto? What the hell is that?

Hello.

-Pleased to meet you, sir. I'm Darren. -Toots.

That's me, yes, toots.

-Do you like this work? -I try to.

-Some of this is very careful work. -Built it to last.

They'll be sitting in here in their old age.

They won't enjoy it. They won't know what to do with themselves.

This is Bobby's mom.

And Paula's. We have a daughter.

I'm probably one of Bobby's oldest pals in London.

At college together.

Except, I left in the second week.

-Do you like cricket? -Yes, I do.

-Playing or watching? -Well, I used to play a bit.

Did you? Were you a batter or bowler?

-A bit of bowling. -Well, I was a left-handed batter.

-Really? Whereabouts? -All over. Till my knee went.

Pulled it, you know.

-What are you laughing at? -Nothing.


What's that? There.

Over to your pads, 'cause you're gonna get bowled out there, right?

So try it once more.

Better.

What's that?

That's amusements. Slot machines, things like that.

You have to put money in.

-What does that say? -That's an optician's.

I-a...

-N. -That's it, brilliant.

Bobby. Not so fast.

Come on, dad. Come on, it's not that far.

-Just a minute. I'm coming. -You all right?

We should have taken the bus. I said we should have taken the bus.

-Dad, are you sure you're all right? -Yes. I just want to see Paula, come on.

-He's all right. -Daddy, lift me up, please.

I don't wanna carry you now. Can't you walk?

-Are you all right? -Yes, I'm all right.

Jack!

They're here!

-My little ballerina! -Hi, dad.

-Still not married? -Stop it. Leave her alone.

Once was enough.

-Hello, darling. -Hello, jacky.

Bobby made us walk. He said it was 10 minutes. It's taken us hours.

The boy needs a man like me around the place.

Bobby's gonna introduce me to some of his rich friends, aren't you, Bobby?

You know Darren's rather adept with his hands, isn't he?

Handyman, handy chap.

Okay, anyone want a drink?

You should look after your sister.

-About time she looked after herself. -Don't start arguing straight away.

Bobby, I've got something to show you. Come with me.

Come with me, let me show you this.

Look. He just left it like this.

-Who has? -Darren.

Well, tell him off. That's a rotten thing to do.

Well, Bobby's got him working all hours.

Excuse me, I am paying him, you know.

Jesus, I've got more than Darren to think about.

-Sorry. -Oh, God.

Those wretched mobile phones. Why do they need them?

There was a man on the phone shouting for half an hour the other night.

I felt like saying, "you don't need the phone, they can hear you in Glasgow."

Thank you, dear.

-Really? I did, you know. I promised them.... -All right, dad?

-Really? I did, you know. I promised them.... -All right, dad?

Yeah, look what I've got.

-Right, can I get you a drink? -That would be lovely.

-Cup of tea, glass of wine? -I'll have a glass of wine.

Right. Careful, everyone. This is hot.

Hey, look at that.

You've burnt yourself.

Right. Let's eat.

-Okay, who wants some wine? -You didn't even bring any wine.

Thank you, darling.

-Here it comes, dad. -I am so happy.

Happy to see everyone together. Like the old days.

Remember when we all drove up to Scotland?

You were young. And we felt young.

-We were sick out of the car window. -You were sick, always sick.

It was horrible.

Mother wore summer dresses...

And went pink in the face like a salmon.

I went bright red.

And it was raining sheets and buckets.

Oh, God, yeah.

Table tennis, do you remember table tennis?

And you read to us.

And then when I wanted to make up my own stories, Bobby hit me.

-No, I didn't. -You were always teasing him.

-You did. -No, I didn't, I wouldn't do it.

He was always hitting me.

-Well, yes, he was. -No, I wasn't.

You know the thing I'm most proud of?

My family.

And we....

Yes, yes.

-Hey, to us all. -Yeah.

-Long lives. -Yes. Long lives.

Cheers, dad.

Good lives.

Cheers, everybody.

How much of this can you eat? Jack?

Okay, just a little bit.

Paula's food always makes me feel ill.

You should have told her what I like.

What shall we do tomorrow?

-Can't we go home? -What's the matter?

I've got to go again.

Then you'll have to go yourself. That's one thing I can't do for you.

I've got pains.

What, now?

What, do you mean now, dad? Okay.

What is it, in your chest? In your arms? Where is it, dad? Come on.

May!

All right, okay. It's okay.

Mother!

Helen, I need you to wake up.

All right. Mother!


Mom.

I can't just leave him on his own.

There you are, dianne. "Go for it" is John's advice.

Don't listen to.... well, listen to him, but don't do anything he tells you.


Okay? Right.

Look, they're waiting for him.

Come on, in you come.


Mom, where do you want his things?

Just put them back.

-Back where? -Just put them anywhere.


Mom, I must....

The thing is, I'm really gonna have to....

Look at these.

Sorry.

Hi, Geoff.

Sorry to interrupt you there. Listen, I'm not in town right now.

I'm gonna be back first thing tomorrow morning.

I really want to meet with you on this.

But I just can't talk right at this moment. Is that okay?

I appreciate it.

All right, see you tomorrow. Take care. Bye.

Come on, why don't you sit down?

I'll put the tv on and I'll make you a cup of tea.

If I sit down, I'll never get up again.

I'll be like all the other old girls around here.

And then I'll go into a home.

Well, you know, I'm sure that's a common reaction.

I'd rather kill myself.

Mom, you can't just wander about.

Come on, sit down.

Such a comfy-looking chair.

You sit in it then. I'm not staying here.

Please. Don't be difficult, mother.

Why not?

-Sorry? -Why shouldn't I be difficult?

-What? -Why shouldn't I be difficult?

My God.

No, it's just that I can't....

No, we'll just tell them they've got to do it.

We'll just say that's.... That's what I said when I interviewed them.

That they were gonna have to do extra hours, so that's.... yeah.

Yeah. No, totally.

Yeah, or I can.... I mean, I can come and....

Sorry. Yes, I'll come in and speak to them myself.

You know where everything is.

Is there anything else you need?

If you need somewhere quiet to sit...

Use my study across the hall.

I never get a chance to go in there.


I've got to go to a meeting.

All right.

-What the fuck are you playing at? -My father has just died, okay?

-What the fuck are you playing at? -My father has just died, okay?

My business is going down. You're never here.

-No, I am here. -You're always on the phone.

It's a nightmare for me at the moment.

-It's nothing to do with that. -How do people not kill each other?

-You can't stand her! -Please keep your voice down.

Come on, let's just hold this together. Yeah?

I think I'll go out for a walk. Cheer myself up.

We'll be like that one day.

No one wanting us.

No one wants you anyway.

That's not entirely true.


Excuse me, I'm sorry to bother you...

But you don't happen to know where benbow road is, do you?

I don't know. I'm not living here. I'm from....

Thank you.

Excuse me, you don't happen to know where benbow road is?

Benbow road?

-Do you know where it's near? -No, I mean I just got....

Go in the pub, go into the pub.

I'm completely lost.

No, I'm not from London, I don't know.

Do you know where she was going? Brilliant, Bobby.

I'll call you back later.

I'll call you back later.

Mom.

-Where have you been? -I've no idea.

I completely lost my sense of direction.

I didn't know where I was going.

Well, you're here now. You're safe now.

Actually, I think I liked it.

You know, just walking.

-What are we gonna do with you? -I don't know, dear.

You could look after Jack sometimes.

In fact, I wanted to go out tonight.

-You're not staying in? -Not if I can help it.

It is a nightmare getting a babysitter...

And then when you get one, they wanna be paid the earth.

You could sleep in my room and I'll jump in with Jack later.

-Can l? -Yeah.

Well, it is what I came for.

I just hadn't expected to do it without your father.

-Won't you be cold without tights on? -Mom, I'm not a child.

Who's the fancy man?

-How do you know it's a man? -Well, I'm assuming it's a man.

Do you like him? Will I meet him? What does he do?

Shush, mother.

Thank you so much.

-Go on, enjoy yourself. -See you later.

-Bye, Jack. -Bye, mom.

-Be good. -I will.

-Where's mommy? I want.... -Hello, darling.

She won't be long. You come and get into bed with me.

That's right. You just snuggle up to me.

That's a good boy.


-Stay. -I better be going.

No, please.

She's pulling this number at the moment that she's gonna kill herself.

Well, good!

You don't even sleep with her anymore, do you?

Are you gonna go home and fuck Carol now, are you?

Darren, my father died.

-My father died. -I know.

-I still love you, Darren. -I know, my sweet.

-You still care for me? -Of course I do.

-Well, say it then. Say it. -Yeah, of course I do.

Tell me that you love me.

You can't say it, can you? Fuck off then!

Fucking hell!

Darren, stop. I'm sorry.

I didn't mean to do that.

Leave her alone, you blasted brute.

-Mommy. -Yes, I'm here.

Now, give me that.

Thanks.

Go to sleep.

-Where's mom? -Hello, darling. I'm picking you up today.

-Ls that all right? -Yeah, it's okay.

You look tired. Have you had a busy day?

Yeah, it was tiring.

Shall I put them in?

Yes, that's a good boy. Nanny can cut that one.

Will you tell me a story? Darren tells me stories.

-Does he? Do you like him? -Yeah.

He told me this one once about a, like, monster...

With big bogies hanging out of his nose.

-And he had carrots, and onions, and toast. -Goodness me.

He used to go to starving people and dangle his face down at them.

Heavens, that's dreadful.

Wow, it looks amazing in here.

She's been to her therapist. Is that how you say it?

-Yes. -Go on, chop that up.

-Therapist? -Yeah.

Can't you talk to your hairdresser, like everyone else?

Now, plant a will be exposed....

-Ls there something wrong with you? -Yes, there is.

Plant b....

You know, I've got nothing....

Turn this bloody telly off.

...With derision and hate.

Look, I've been wanting to say this to you for a long time.

But it's not gonna be easy.

Because I like things, sort of, free now, and open, and honest. So....

What?

-You hardly touched me. -When?

You know, you never praised or encouraged me.

I don't believe you ever thought I could achieve anything.

I never felt valued, mom.

That is why I'm doing it with a married man on the fucking floor.

What are you saying? It's not true.

If I'd had the advantages that you'd had...

God, I wouldn't be in this mess now.

Advantages? What advantages did I have? Me?

Right. You had a really nice house...

A very good husband...

A nice little job, lots of free time.

You know, kids at school.

If I had that free time....

I mean, what did you do?

You just sat on your ass all day...

Watching the fucking telly.

I was unhappy.

All my life.

I've never been strong.

And it was all too much for me.

-Look, let's forget about you for a second. -What?

What about me and what I'm left with?

Darling, you're healthy, you're intelligent.

I want him to be with me.

Who? That man, the builder?

Darling, he's rough, with no qualifications or money--

-that is what I want. -You can do better than him.

-I love him. -Him!

Darling, you don't.

-Why? -He doesn't really live with his wife.

He doesn't really have a relationship with her.

-He lives outside in a van. -Heavens.

And he can't leave because he's got a son.

He's got this autistic son that he absolutely adores.

He'd do anything for him.

You know, Darren is a gorgeous man, he's a lovely man.

But he's just going through a lot at the moment, a lot of turmoil.

He's just in a mess, you know.

Perhaps you could, sort of, get talking to him, you know...

And find out how he's feeling...

About me.

Please.

I'll try.


-Ls it ready yet? -What? No, not yet.

-Here. -I'm starving.

Chocolate! Thanks.

-I did not give you that, right? -Okay.

Hello.

I've seen you about, but we haven't met properly.

I'm Darren. I spoke to your husband just for a minute.

-I'm sorry, I'm very sorry. -Yes, thank you.

I've got to go and pick up my boy...

'Cause my wife's with her sister.

You're married.

For longer than I can remember. Not that I can remember anything.

Who am l?

What are you doing with Paula?

How can you ask that?

Do you want some tea?

Yes, please.

-Do you ever work for anyone else? -Not if I can help it.

I worked in shops for years.

-Shoe shops. -Really?

Well, everybody needs shoes. A few pairs, at least.

Not an awful lot of people not wearing shoes.

What else do people have to have, apart from shoes?

I suppose if you could work that out, you could make an awful lot of money.

-What do you think? -I don't know. Love?

That's why I'm not rich.

-I'd like to show you these. -Ls that toots?

Wait, is that him?

That's very funny. Very funny.

Oh, sweetheart.

I found something the other day, in one of my father's old jackets.

It was just a shopping list my mother had written for him in her own handwriting.

At the time, it just became...

The most valuable thing I'd ever touched, you know.

I think about it all the time now, and I wish I didn't.

About what remains when we're gone.

I can't go home.

I don't know what I'm doing.

-I'm frightened. -Are you?

You imagine people getting less frightened as they get older.

You think they'd be able to deal with things better.

No.

Well, perhaps.

-Yes, they do. -Something to look forward to.

"...The borogoves, and the mome raths outgrabe.

"'Beware the jabberwock, my son!

"'The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!

"'Beware the jubjub bird, and shun the frumious bandersnatch!"'

-bandersnatch! -Bandersnatch.

Hello, you.

Hello. What a happy family.

Doesn't he declaim beautifully?

-Very nice talking to you. I'll see you. -Yes.

How's he been? Been okay?

-Been a very good boy. -Good.

-You've not been bored, have you? -Not at all.

I'm sorry I'm a bit late, but I had to stay behind.

Because we've got a naughty boy at school and I had to talk to his mom.

Other people do this kind of thing, you know, it's possible.

-I'll think of something. -I'm gonna have to go or she'll kill me.

I'm getting so impatient, I could kill you.

Why is he so marvelous, this man?

You are such a snob.

-No, I'm not. -Yes, you are.

Your snobbery stops you seeing anything good about anybody.

Just 'cause he's doing a bit of building work.

He's a very clever, talented person, you know.

He's artistic and gentle.

He's a very sweet man.

And he's just, you know, very weak as well.

I'm gonna leave this tonight, I can't concentrate on it.

You know, in two or three years...

I hope I'm gonna be able to support us properly.

And then I'm gonna have a child with him before it's too late.

-Does he want that? -Yeah, he will.

I wanted to say...

If you haven't got anywhere with your writing yet, or-- here we go. Why can't you just believe in me for once?

Just once, believe. Just say something positive.

Just make me feel better for once in your life.

Don't be so harsh with me.

I am harsh. I am. I feel harsh.

-But I think you're right. -You think I'm right?

That's why I'm so upset.

Listen, just forget what I said.

I am gonna finish with that bastard and get liberated.

You will have to rid yourself of false hope in the end.

Actually, I've been thinking of finishing with him from the moment I met him.

I'll do it tomorrow. Yeah, why shouldn't I do it?

I'll suffer, yes, probably...

And then I'll just be free of the whole fucking nightmare.

I'll be free. Yes.

Right.

-You finished? -Yes, thank you.

Actually, I'll take a croissant for a friend, I think.

Okay, sure.


-Hi, mom. -Oh, God, you scared me.

-I was just coming to listen to some music. -Great. Why not?

Sit with me. We've hardly had a chance to talk.

You haven't stopped, darling. Enjoy. See you later.


Darren. I brought you this.

Is my daughter talented, do you think?

I really love her voice when she reads to me.

You believe in her then?

Good luck to her in whatever she wants to do.

But it's not necessarily how she should spend her life.

I don't know.

Who knows the answer to how anybody should spend their life?

I thought yesterday.

Now all I want to do are interesting things.

Things I love.

Thank you for that.

I'd better get back. Helen will think I'm slacking.

-Yes, she's very.... -Yes, she is. Very.

-She's jealous of you, that's all. -Me?

Yeah. Well, she's jealous of everybody.

-How do you deal with her? -I tell her she looks like Jean shrimpton.

What, every day?

Yeah, it has a calming effect on most women, I find.

Yeah, I suppose it would.

Sorry?

I said, "dear God, let us be alive before we die."

Hey, we'll have lunch, shall we?

-Shall we? -Yeah.

Isn't it beautiful?

I never think of London like this.

Come on, drink up.

-All right, give us a chance. -I've got something to show you.

-You'll like this. -That's a double.

It was at least a double, I think it was a treble.

-Lt'll go to my knees. -Come on. Let's go, chop-chop.

You see, I don't believe you really want to be with my daughter.

And you're making her frantic, not being honest.

If you want to be with her, tell me and I can reassure her.

But I am with her.

Here we are.

Look, I'm sorry. I forgot.

-No, I'm fine with you. -How stupid of me.

I'm fine.

-Are you sure? -Yes.

What a lovely place.

Here.

It's hogarth.

-His house is just round the corner. -Good heavens.

I shouldn't think he's in, though.

Why don't you read the poem? Yeah?

"Farewell...

"Great painter of mankind...

"Who reach'd the noblest form of art.

"Whose pictur'd morals charm the mind...

"And through the eye correct the heart.

"Lf genius....

-"Fire thee." -"Fire thee...

"Reader, stay.

"Lf nature touch thee, drop a tear.

"Lf neither move thee, turn away.

"For hogarth's honor'd dust lies here."

Gosh. I never knew that was here.

I must come and draw it sometime.

Here.

-What? -Draw it now.

-Come on. -Don't be silly.

-Draw it now. -I've got shopping to do.

Well, just forget the shopping.

-I like being with you so much. -Good.

Are you all right? I've got you.

Sorry, I'm not used to drinking at lunchtime.

Oh, God, I'm sorry.

I'm so sorry. I don't know what happened to me.

I think you just fell.

I must go.

Bye.


-Hello. -Very '60s.

I was washing nappies at the time by hand.

-I'm taking you out on the town tonight. -Oh, good.

It's my writers' night, remember?

Unless you're going out with a man.

That would be my lucky day.

Actually, I've been thinking...

I've got someone in mind for you at my writers' group.

-Oh, no. -No. Wait and see.

I think you'll find the group interesting anyway.

-I just saw Darren. -Oh, yes?

-Did you tell him? -Tell him what?

-That you're leaving him. -No.

I kept thinking he had someone else on his mind.

Bastard likes girls too much.

"L wake up early. I love the early morning...

"And while my coffee brews...

"There's a garden at the back of the flat where the birds come to feed...

"And in my slippers I check each flower.

"When my coffee's made, I read some poetry.

"L do this now every day, and try to learn it.

"By now, I'm ready to write and I sit down...

"Using Paula's method of free writing.

"L have her in mind...

"As a teacher, you see.

"And I get it all down, and they come back to me.

"Mother, father, brother...

"My cousins.

"And I think, this has been a life and I can give it value...

"Find new pleasures in it...

"By making it into literature.

"So then I read back what I've written and make changes--"

Bruce, thanks very much. That was great.

I think everyone would agree it was.

-That was really good. -Thank you.

So, why don't we take something from that about the family...

And try and, sort of...

Do a sketch of early childhood, maybe.

Sort of really tap into your sense memory from childhood.

Make it a very accurately drawn, a very precise picture.

So, as usual...

We've got pens and papers for you to use everywhere.

So, go and find a quiet corner and have a think about it...

And I'll come round and chat to you whilst you are doing it, okay?

-You don't have to do this, mom. -No, I will, now I'm here.

Okay. You could use that stuff over there.

Just see what occurs to you.

This looks great.

A memory from 30 years ago.

-A catastrophe? -Wow.

-You should read that out later. -No.

-Yeah, go on. -No.

You should.

-Really? -Yeah.

"I'd put the children to bed at last.

"Lt was such a struggle.

"I'd hate them by the end of the day...

"And thought I was the only parent...

"Who felt that way.

"They'd be screaming upstairs, throwing things out of their cots.

"I'd put on my coat and shut the front door behind me.

"And I'd go out and walk across the Fields...

"For miles, as I do now.

"Or I'd go to a pub where no one knew me.

"L made sure I'd be back before my husband.

"But they'd be asleep at last.

"L wanted to kill myself out of guilt.

"L still haven't recovered from those cries.

"What is it about those cries?"

-Ls that the first thing you've ever written? -Yes.

-Very touching. -Thank you.

-Have a nice evening. -I will.

May, I'm Bruce, by the way.

Hello.

Would you like to come out with some of us tonight? Max and hilary?

I really like what you did. It was....

It was gutsy.

Thank you. It's a bit late for me, I get a bit tired.

-Right. -I enjoyed that. It was good.

-Bye, Paula. Bruce. -Bye.

I could go all the time.

Mom, why don't you go out with Bruce?

-Yes, I will. Not tonight, but another night. -Good.

-But I enjoyed it. -Yeah, well, I'd like that very much.


Hello.

I spent the morning shopping.

And I hope you don't mind...

But I've bought something.

How kind.

How kind you are.

Do you like it?

It's beautiful.

I feel so....

-What? What do you feel? -Filled up by it.

And ignorant.

-Lgnorant that I don't know anything. -But that you want to know.


Keep still.

Look, I haven't got time to keep still.

And it's years since I did this.

I love it.

I'm no good at it, but I don't care.

If you asked me to describe my life and what I've done...

As you did yesterday, I'd have to say, "nothing much."

I just wasn't there.

I was always too worried about everything...

To live in it properly.

I was a terrible housewife.

But that's what all the women did then.

We weren't like Helen and Paula.

And I just went along with it.

Until....

Until what?

Well, until a few minutes ago, actually.

Looks like we've got a rebel on our hands.

A few years ago...

An intelligent man who lived nearby, he was an antique dealer...

And he started to like me.

And twice he took me into his bed.

-Did you like it? -Oh, yes.

And I planned to go away with him.

I was gonna go to my husband and explain.

I never saw him again.

I couldn't upset anyone.

This cigarette's made my chest all congested.

I can't breathe.

And what would happen if you did breathe?

I'd say:

"Would you.... Would it be too much trouble....

"Would you mind....

"The spare room's....

"Would you come to the spare room with me?"

Would you?


What do you see?

A shapeless old lump?

Oh God, I can't....

Can I do something to you?

I feel such....

I'm sorry, I should have been doing this before.

Do you want to touch me?

You can touch me.

Will you touch me?

If you'll let me.

I thought nobody would ever touch me again...

Apart from the undertaker.

-Oh, God! -There.

Hot.

I'm so hot.

I think I'm burning up.


And I'm floating in a most peculiar way and the stars look very different today

-hello. -Hi.

-Just getting things shipshape. -I'm so glad you've perked up.

I thought I might take the blinds down. Is that all right?

If you feel like it, yeah.

I heard a song today, at Bobby's.

Here I am sitting in a tin can far above the world planet earth is blue are you all right?

Calm down, mom.

Is it because you miss dad?

No, I just like the song.

Funny that. I hadn't got you down for a space oddity.

-A what? -It's the name of the song.

We're gonna have to lay an extra plate for dinner.

Why?

So, what's he been saying?

-Who? -You know who.

But you've left him, surely?

Why do you keep saying that? Repeating yourself like a bloody parrot.

When the time is right, I will.

Well, you know, I didn't really get the chance to go into things.

-You had lunch. -Yes, we did.

He took you out. He told me.

-Did he? -Yeah.

And?

Well, you know, I couldn't just plunge in. It'll take time.

It's a long game. Don't they say that?

Mother, my whole bloody life depends on this.

Well, I don't know.

With men you have to coax, negotiate.

They're like frightened birds. I mean, if you say, "boo," they'll fly away.

-And you're the expert now, are you? -Well, I do know something.

If you do know some things, then why can't you just....

All right. Don't pull me to pieces.

I mean, you've asked for my advice, and that's what I'm trying to give to you.

Hi.

Hi, cowboy.

Hello, cowgirl. Hello, may.

Hello.

-Are you hungry? -Yeah, I'm hungry.

-No wine? -No money.

-That's not an excuse. -It's the only one I've got.

You know, everyone has their story, I guess.

Everyone wants to have their say, or has to have their say.

I want to.

If you've not got that, you know, you just go bonkers.

Anyway, it's self-expression and therapy I'm into now.

You know, I think if I could combine that with the kids at school...

I don't know, maybe....

I don't know, write some kind of textbook thing, you know.

For teachers, like a guidebook, kids with problems.

And that is something I actually could usefully do.

-Everything all right? -Yeah, fine.

It's good.

Is it?

I think it's the best thing I've read that you've written.

-Really? -Yeah.

You should read this out at the group. I think they're gonna like it.

God, I'm so happy.

Thank you.

-Time for bed, mother, I think, don't you? -What?

Yes, sorry.

-Actually, I think I'll go out. -What, now?

It's all right, I'm not frightened anymore.

-Where's she going? -I don't know.

She's starting to get on my nerves, actually.

Right. Can you read my thing again?

-Again? -Yeah.

I just need you to, sort of, read it a second time.

...Come round tomorrow? I'll see you tomorrow?

Yeah, call me at Bobby's.

Love you.


-Hello, dear. -Hiya.

That's cheered me up.


-Hey, may. -Hello.

-What are we gonna have for lunch? -I don't want lunch.

Take me upstairs.

Oh, God.


There you go. There, come on.

That's it. Come on.

That's it.

There you go.

Okay, all right.

I have never done this before.

-Ls that good? -Yeah.

-Up you get. -What?

Up you get.

I'm not doing it again. I haven't got the energy to do it again.

I am spent.

What are they?

I've no idea. Found them in Helen's cupboard.

I've no idea. Found them in Helen's cupboard.

Would you take anything?

-Why's that? -I don't know.

I do love these afternoons.

The peace.

You know, my boy Nicky...

He is the most...

Beautiful, sweetest, mad....

And you talk to me about Paula and....

I'm just making it up as I go along.

I don't know.

-What do you want, darling? Tell me. -I don't know.

Six months away.

Six months away just to think about everything...

And repair myself.

-Well, why can't you? -Because I haven't got any money.

I work all the time, but I just don't save anything.

It's ridiculous. There's pubs I can't even go into...

Because there's big blokes looking for me.

I'll pay for you.

To travel and live.

-Why would you do that? -Well, I want to.

We could go together.

What a stupid idea.

No, it isn't.

Don't you feel terrible about all this?

No.

No, I don't give a fuck what people think.

Me, I just always end up in the shit anyway.

I haven't had enough shit in my life.

My husband always liked me being at home looking after him.

And he hated me having friends, so I didn't have any.

You always do what he said?

It was easier.

We didn't have that feminism then, you know.

I guess some men like their women depressed.

What? What did you say?

Some men, it just suits them to have their woman unhappy.

You know, Bobby's like that.

What, they keep them that way, is that what you're saying?

Lord, I never thought of that.

I spoke to Paula on the phone this morning. She says you've got an admirer.

Yes, the old girl's suddenly in demand.

Would you mind?

You won't like anybody else more than me.

Why's that?

-You know why. -No.

-But we'll see, won't we? -You old tart.

I've never been called that before.

-Did you mean what you said before? -Yes.

Hiya.

Hello.

Bloody hell.

-Come with us, have some beer. -No, thank you.

We arranged to talk about mother. Mom.

-Come on, I want it sorted out today. -Yeah, all right.

-Save some of that for me. -Yeah.

What's he been saying?

I don't know. At least it's coming along a bit faster now.

I mean about me, not the fucking floor.

How should I know, I'm not the fucking go-between.

I mean, how am I supposed to show the house to buyers...

With the conservatory half-finished...

And him with his ass hanging out of his trousers?

You're selling already?

I mean, you're mad.

-I haven't got any choice. -Why?

Wretched cardigan shop's hemorrhaging all my fucking money.

And, of course, she insisted on opening it...

At precisely the worst possible moment for me.

-I thought you were loaded. -Yeah, so did l.

Well, no one seems to want what I've got to offer at the moment.

-Poor little brother. -Aren't you pleased?

-You've always been envious of me. -I have not. That's rubbish.

It's not rubbish, it's true.

-That is utter crap and you know it. -It's not.


-Have you actually looked at these? -No.

-She's having him. -Who?

Mom. Mother.

What are you talking about? Don't be ridiculous.

No, look at these.

-Oh, my God, it's horrible. -Jesus Christ.

I feel as if I've just had a very hot curry.

-Fucking hell, the old slapper. -My God, it's disgusting.

No, I'm telling you this is fantasy. She wouldn't do this.

Would she?

Oh, my God, if this is true...

Your boyfriend's even more of a fuck-up than I thought.

No.

Listen to me, if she's been stupid, all right...

Just don't hurt her, okay?

Hurt her?

You fucking idiot.


-I'm off then. -Right.

-Everything all right? -Yeah.

-What? -Nothing.

-I'm gonna go to the pub. You want a pint? -No, I'm a bit busy.

I'll see you then.

Mother.

Mother.

Yes? What?

No, nothing.

What?

Oh, Paula.

What?

You'd be a fool to spend your life beating your head against a brick wall.

Open your eyes. See what else is out there.


Why don't we all go out together sometime?

Who?

You, me, Bruce, and Darren.

No, I don't think so.

What are you doing tomorrow?

-This is lovely. -Yes, it is, isn't it?

It is, yes.

-Eat something, Darren. -I'm not hungry.

Don't you think he should eat something, mother?

He's a big lad.

So, when are you gonna finish my study?

When I've finished the conservatory.

I wouldn't worry about that. They're selling up.

-What? -Yeah. They're selling up. Didn't you know?

He wouldn't do that without telling me.

There's a lot of things people do without telling each other.

Darren and I are moving further out this year, getting a place.

Lovely.

What's wrong, Darren?

Why would he do that? Why would he fucking do that?

-Ls he all right? -Yeah, he's fine.

Why don't you come and see my collection of first editions?

-That's very kind-- -sounds like a good idea.

Why don't you do that? And we'll see you later.

Why don't we go somewhere else? Let's go to another pub.

You'd like a drink? Well, I've got the car.

Come on, everyone. I parked by the church.

I know what you're trying to do.

It's not far.

Come on, mother, let's have some fun.

-I do like you. -Good.

-Oh, my God, Darren, look at this. -Come on.

Mom's at it.

Let's just get a fucking drink, come on.

When I lost my wife, I started collecting all the penguins.

I moved into older books then.

I've got some from the 17th century.

I also collect China. Mostly Clarice Cliff.

You've heard of her?

-Yes, I've heard of her. -You do? That's wonderful.

You know, those '20s and '30s designs, some are very geometric.

Actually, I don't like the geometric ones quite so much.

And some of them are, sort of, rolling countryside...

Sort of childlike...

Iike Rupert bear annuals.

I'm so sorry. Would you take that?

Excuse me, please. Could you excuse me, please?


It's all right.

Where's Paula?

They don't want us oldies around.

It's odd.

I can feel the world streaming past me...

Incomprehensibly as it seems to us at our age.

I feel left out.

I feel stupid.

Thank you.

But she reads all my work, every single word of it.

She's given me something meaningful to do.

She's an inspiring teacher.

-You must be very proud of her. -Yes.

Are you tired?

So much has happened.

And there's so much to worry about.

But I can't go home.

I'm not ready for old age.

I don't know what I want to do.

I do.


Oh no, not in me, please. Please, no.

-Please, just keep still. -No.

That's good.


Paula, let me in.

Paula, open the door.

-I thought you weren't coming back. -Where would I be?

I thought you might fancy a bit of Bruce.

Daughter, don't talk to me like that.

You trying to tell me you didn't do it with him?

-Look, just-- -I know you did.

Please let me in.

Mother, I've taken your advice. I've given Darren a deadline.

I've asked him to leave his wife and come and live here with me.

I see.

He agreed.

-He agreed? -Yeah, he agreed.

He says he will come.

He's gonna go and tell her...

Because he's shit scared that I'll go and tell her myself.

Tomorrow, when he comes with his things in pathetic plastic bags...

You will have to go.

We're gonna be staying in a lot, you know. Staying in a lot.

I'm gonna clear this place out.

Mother.

What?

Do you love me?

Of course I love you. You're my daughter.

You must be so pleased about Darren and me then.


What's this?

My work. Years of it.

What are you doing?

This is it. It's all going. Makes a good fire, doesn't it?

-Why? -You told me not to waste my time.

-You did. -I didn't.

-Shit. -I didn't say that.

You told me I'm not a writer. I can't write, I can't do anything.

You should have said "do it," then.

-I didn't say to burn your work. -You said not to try.

All these are plays in here. Every single one of those is a play.

Please, stop. Darling, please don't do this.

Paula, don't.

You said I should be able to get a better kind of a man...

If I changed things.

Everything would be better and bloody different.

A better mother. I don't know, a better everything.

-A better cook.... -I'm sorry.

Just stop being yourself, I think, is what you meant.

It'd be better if I was a different fucking person altogether.

-I think you should go home. -I'm going into town.

No, I don't mean that. I mean...

I think you should go back to your house to live.

I can arrange for you to have counseling if you want.

Is that what people do...

Instead of taking an interest in their family?

Look, what you do....

Well, you're more than grown up, that's....

It's none of my business, but I just wouldn't mess with Paula's head.

She can be fragile, you know that.

Okay. And Darren....

Well, he's easily distracted.

You know, he is kind of strange, mother, really.

Does he know you're selling the house?

And the conservatory he's just done?

No, I haven't had a chance to discuss it with him yet.

I'd look to yourself, Bobby. To you and Helen.

How did you become so cold?

How did you become so hot?

That fucking guy in the newsagent's has done it again.

I can't fucking believe it! I'm fucking standing there....

-What the fuck are you doing? -What?

If this isn't finished by when I said it should be...

-I'm firing you. -All right.

I'm gonna sack you, all right?

What the fuck are you smiling at? You useless git!

Get out!

Get.... actually, both of you, just get out. Get the fuck out!


Bandersnatch. Yeah.

Fuck.

Hey, how about a bit of rub-a-dub, mother?

Please don't call me that.

Come on, there's nobody about.

Why don't you just fucking suck it? Come on.

That's it. Here we are.

Be tender with me, please.

I'm always tender with you, my lovely. I'm always tender.

I love it when you're a tarty old thing.

You've got such a lovely wet mouth on you.

Why don't you put some lipstick on and let me shove my cock in it? Go on.

Darling, I'll do anything, you know that, but please talk to me.

Talk. Good.

Yep. We've talked.

Have you really got the money?

Yes, darling. You know I have.

Give it to me then. I'm telling you now.

I'm glad you're in a hurry.

-When will you tell your wife? Tonight? -Tell her what?

About you going.

Tell her what?

Darren, what is it? What are you laughing at?

You know, the money, I just....

How much have you got?

How much have you got shoved in your knickers?

-Lt'll be a ticket. -A what?

I said I would get you a ticket.

You won't be able to trade it in. You just get on the plane...

With me.

On the plane, with you?

A fucking plane. I can't get on a fucking plane.

I can't get on a fucking bus, never mind on a fucking plane.

-I mean, what, don't you fucking know that? -How else are we gonna get there?

A ticket. For fuck's sake!

Jesus Christ!

Why does everybody have fucking money but me? Jesus, fuck!

Are you seriously going to let me down...

After all that you've said, all?

Are you consciously trying to fucking hurt me?

You make me want to kill myself. What have I done to make you so angry?

-Hold me. -Fuck off, Paula.

Paula? Don't you even know who I am?

I don't give a shit who you are, woman.

I'm sick of all you fucking women just pawing and clawing me!

Why doesn't someone do something for me occasionally, for a change?

What am l?

Some sort of fucking whore to listen to you and to fuck you...

To make you feel all right?

And this fucking thing, fucking marvelous, yes.

Heart and fucking. Fuck off!

Your asshole of a fucking son....

God, he's up his fucking ass!

Fucking cunt!

Fuck off! Fuck it!


You can have him.


I can't say that I like you very much.

It's not as if you've ever done more than the minimum for me, anyway.

I feel as if I've lost everything lately.

I'm sorry.

Father...

-Lover... -Don't.

...Mother.

But I am fucking well alive.

And there are things I want to know.

What am I good at?

Is there anything that I'm good at?

What do I wanna do? What do I like?

Well, I'm gonna find out.

Is there anything I can do?

At last.

God.

Yeah. I've been thinking about it for a few days, actually.

I think...

I would like to hit you.

-Do you understand that? -Yes.

Now?

Stand up.

Are you ready?

-That's literally a year old. -It's all very nice.

If you come through here. Now, this may not look like it...

But it's nearly finished.

-Yeah, it'll add considerable value. -I should hope so, after the disruption.

Hello.

God, what's happened?

-What happened? -It's okay. It's not so bad.

We had an argument.

And I've got the message.

I'm going home.

Right.

Oh, mom.

-I'll give you a lift to the station. -No, thank you.

I'll get the tube.


I mean, you can't mess around for the rest of your life like this...

Just going from shag to shag.

I seriously think you need help. Look, I really think....

Unless I'm much mistaken, this door is locked.

Sister, the key please.

The key is lost. The princess has....

Gran, look, I've got a new haircut.

-Bye, gran. -You going?

-I'll see you another day. -Yeah, bye.

Goodbye.

Bye, mom.

Come again soon, yeah.