The Virgin Suicides (1999) Script

Cecilia was the first to go.

What are you doing here, honey?

You're not even old enough to know how bad life gets.

Obviously, Doctor, you've never been a 13-year-old girl.

Everyone dates the demise of our neighborhood from the suicides of the Lisbon girls.

People saw their clairvoyance in the wiped-out elms, the harsh sunlight, and the continuing decline of our auto industry.

Even then, as teenagers, we tried to put the pieces together.

We still can't.

Now, whenever we run into each other at business lunches or cocktail parties, we find ourselves in the corner going over the evidence one more time.

All to understand those five girls... who, after all these years, we can't get out of our minds.

Cecilia, the youngest, was 13.

And Lux was 14.

Bonnie was 15.

Mary was 16.

And Therese was 17.

No one could understand how Mrs. Lisbon and Mr. Lisbon, our math teacher, had produced such beautiful creatures.

Paul Baldino claimed to have found Cecilia on her first attempt.

Hey, I was the one who found her.

I was in the storm sewer under my house, and there's all these tunnels.

You can get into anyone's house.

So when Paul said this, we believed him because he was the son of Sammy "The Shark" Baldino, and we knew about his escape tunnel that led through the sewers.

So I went up, thinkin' I could see one of those Lisbon girls takin' a shower.

Yeah. All right.

And I walk in... and I see blood everywhere.

So I turned around and went straight for the stairs and right back up the tunnel.

Had to tell you guys that story, so...

I'll see you guys later, all right?

I heard it was an accident.

No, it was no accident, Joan. Of course the parents are to blame.

Well, I heard they found the razor in the toilet.

Everyone had an opinion as to why Cecilia had tried to kill herself.

That girl didn't wanna die.

She just wanted out of that house.

She wanted out of that decorating scheme.

The most popular theory held Dominic Palazzolo to blame.

Dominic was the immigrant kid who was staying with relatives until his family got settled in New Mexico.

He was the first boy in our neighborhood to wear sunglasses, and within a week of his arrival he'd fallen in love.

The object of his desire wasn't Cecilia, but Diana Porter.

I love her.

When Diana Porter left on vacation in Switzerland, Dominic denounced God.

I don't know!

And to prove the validity of his love, he jumped off the roof of his relatives' house.

I'm gonna show you some images.

And, uh, you tell me...

what they remind you of.


A banana.

A swamp.

An Afro.


I don't think Cecilia truly meant to end her life.

Her act was a cry for help.

I know you're very strict, but I think that Cecilia would benefit by having a social outlet outside of the codification of school... where she could interact with males her own age.

Peter Sisten had helped Mr. Lisbon install a model of the solar system in his classroom, and in return Mr. Lisbon invited him for dinner.

Bless us, O Lord, in these, thy gifts which we are about to receive from thy bounty.

Through Christ our Lord. Amen.


Lux, please. Put your shirt on this instant.


Thank you, dear.

Can you pass the salt, please?

Ham? Thank you.

Uh, sweetheart, would you like some peas?

I hate peas. Here.

That's a nice-looking ham, dear.

Oh, thank you, honey.

Mmm, this is good, Mom.

So, Peter, are you, uh, an aviation enthusiast?

Well, I, uh — I don't know if I'd call myself an enthusiast, but, uh, I like planes.

Oh, yeah? Thanks.


Uh, Peter, are you on — on the football squad?

Um, no, I play it, but I'm not actually on the team.

Oh, I see. Not a team player.

Do you like to wrestle?

You okay, Peter?

The Brazilian turbot frog was added to the endangered species list today.

That's the third animal this year. Oh, dear.

The turbot frog. Darling, I don't think I've ever heard of it.

Um, excuse me. May I use the restroom?

Oh, of course. The one down here isn't working very well.

Go upstairs, through Cecilia's room.

Okay. Thanks.

Hold — Hold on.

I thought you'd died in there.

Are you done hogging the bathroom? I need something.

Do you mind?

Thank you very much.

Are you forgetting something?

Oh, Peter. Here's a little airfoil I thought you might find — Thank you. find amusing.

It's a — demonstration of Bernoulli's principle.

Lift and — From that time on, the Lisbon house began to change.

Almost every day, and even when she wasn't keeping an eye on Cecilia, Lux would suntan on her towel, wearing a swimsuit that caused the knife sharpener to give her a 15-minute demonstration for free.

Following the doctor's orders, two weeks after Cecilia returned home, Mr. Lisbon persuaded his wife to allow the girls to throw the first and only party of their short lives.

There. Is that okay?

I gotta get dressed.

Welcome. Good evening, Mrs. Lisbon.

Come on in.

The party's in the basement.

Just go on around to the left and then down the stairs.

Hi. I'm Bonaventure.

Hi. Hi. Tim.

Nice to meet you.

Hi. Hi.

Would you like some punch? Yeah.

Okay. Thanks.

Hi. Hi.


Hi. Thank you.

Hey. Hi.

Do you wanna sit down?


♪ The days and the years ♪

♪ Will go streaking by ♪

♪ But the time has stopped In my dream ♪

♪ We have all our everyday Hopes and fears ♪

♪ And you'll find no exception in me ♪

♪ But that doesn't get me Through a sea of tears ♪

♪ Over life's biggest tragedy ♪

♪ You're so long ago ♪

♪ And so far away ♪

♪ But my dream lives on forever ♪

Um, how'd your SAT's go?



Do you know where you're applying yet?

Well, no, but my parents are pushing towards Yale because that's where my dad went.

That's nice.

But you have to imagine what it'd be like when the clouds would open up and out of the sun would come the Hun and his Messerschmitt coming down.

And, boys, I swear, what, two or three years older than you would be in this, the P-51B Mustang.

"B" for what? For bull's-eye, see?

You've heard of Yale?

Oh, yeah.

This punch is fantastic.

Can I give you more? Sure.

What's in it?

Juices — some cherry, uh, pineapple.

You know, I, uh — I love pineapple.


♪ You're so far away ♪

♪ And so long ago ♪ This baby would come in — And this won the war for the United Kingdom. You see?

E-Excuse me. Sure. Okay.

And it's this kind of, uh — this kind of, uh, equipment that — that makes, uh, a model work.

Here's Joe.

Hi, Joe. Hi.

Hi, Joe.

Now, if he needs anything, just call me. Oh, I'm sure we'll be fine.



Joe, good to see you. How are ya?

Good. Glad you came tonight.

How's it going? Hey, Joe, how's it going?

You're just in time. In time.

Good. Hi.

Hey, everyone, look. His ears wiggle if you scratch his chin.

Joe, sing your song.

♪ All the monkeys have no tails In Zamboanga ♪

♪ All the monkeys have no tails ♪

♪ Got bitten off by whales ♪

♪ All the monkeys have no tails In Zamboanga ♪ Good job, Joe. Good song.

Good job, Joe.

Where'd you learn that song? That was good.

May I be excused?

If you want to, my dear, but this is your party.

A-All right, i-if you wanna go upstairs, go ahead.

But we'll just — we'll just have to have fun without you.

Oh, look. He always chooses heads.

Joe, what's it gonna be? Heads.

Joe, will you try tails?

Heads it is.

Let's try again, eh? Let's go.

Heads. Tails.


One more time. In the air, Joe. Heads.

Heads it is anyway!

One more time, man.

Okay, call it in the air, Joe. Heads.

- ♪ All I need is the air that I breathe ♪ Heads. That's enough of that.

♪ And to love you ♪ How ya doin'?


Picked it up pretty well. Yeah.

You should have a record. It's my favorite song.

You know, you're very beautiful.

Say, I could paint you some time.


♪ All I need is the air that I breathe ♪ Oh, so, did they sing it to you? Yeah.

Wow, that's good.


Oh, no.


Oh, my — No! No, no, no. Don't look. Turn around.

Turn around. Darlings, turn around.

Don't look. Don't — Don't loo — What is this?

Oh, Jesus. Please, God.

What do we have here now?

No funerals today.

You in charge?

All right.

Okay. Okay, fellas.

Said she was only 13.

Against Kinella lifetime, 12 out of 47.

He has a home run and six runs driven in.

Kinella looks in, shakes off the sign from Delitta.

Oh, hi, Mary. Are your parents home?

Hi, Father Moody. Come in.

Taken up high. Ball one.

Oh, hello, Father.

Please sit down. - Inside. Ball two.


Come on, Miller, that was inside.

Uh, no. No, thanks.


How 'bout we get the missus down here, have a little chat?

Afraid she's under the weather.

She's not really... uh, seeing anybody.

Well, she'll see her priest.

Ah, this kid's a sucker for the high inside ones every time.

- Swing and a miss. Strike two. Every time.

Excuse me.


Swing and a ground ball to short!

Walker picks it up, makes a flip to Durand, over to Burnett!

Double play!

Double play, Father. - And that will end the inning.

Double play.

He's hitting .212 this season, has 23 home runs, driven in 57 runs for the Dodgers.

He steps up against Kinella.

Rosenthal against Kinella lifetime, 12 out of 47.

Has a home run and six runs driven in.

Mrs. Lisbon? - He now looks in, shakes off the sign.

May I come in?


Hello, girls.

I thought we could talk.

Do you feel like talking?

Well, if you ever want to, you know where to find me.

Mrs. Lisbon, it's Father Moody.

Mrs. Lisbon, hello.

I wanted you to know that I listed Cecilia's death as an accident.

An accident waiting to happen.

John said you couldn't get a policy to cover it.

I know. It's so incredibly dangerous.

Let's give it a try.


One, two, three.

Oh, God.

It's just so sad, I can't even believe it. Footings are too deep.

You got that chain in your truck?

Hit it!

Our collection of souvenirs of the Lisbon girls, which still exists, started with Cecilia's diary.

Parkie had gotten it from Skip Ortega, the plumber's assistant, who had found it next to the toilet in the bathroom.

Tim Weiner, the brain, decoded it.

Emotional instability.

Look at the I's, the dots on 'em. They're everywhere.

Basically, what we have here is a dreamer, someone completely out of touch with reality.

When she jumped, she probably thought she was flying.


"Monday, February 13. Today we had frozen pizza.

Thursday. Mom made creamed corn for dinner.

It's the worst. It looks like —"

"Mary chipped her front tooth on the monkey bars, acting like an idiot.

She made a big scene and had to go get her tooth capped. It looks normal, I guess."

Here, give me that.

I told you she had a capped tooth.

Elm trees. How many pages can you write about dying trees?

Here. Something about Dominic.

"Palazzolo jumped off the roof today over that rich bitch Porter.

How stupid can you be?"

"Today we went out on the boat. It was pretty cold.

We saw a couple of whales.

Lux leaned over and stroked a whale. I didn't think they would stink so much.

It's the kelp in their baleens rotting.

I hope we can go again sometime."

Hang on. Just read this. Read that.

"Lux lost it over Kevin..." "Hines."

Is it "Hines"? The garbage man. The garbage man.

Lux lost it over Kevin Heines, the garbage man.

She'd wake up at 5:00 in the morning and hang out casually on the front steps, like it wasn't completely obvious.

She wrote his name in marker on all her bras and underwear.

Mom found them and bleached out all the Kevins.

Lux was crying on her bed all day.

The trees, like lungs filling with air.

My sister, the mean one, pulling my hair.

And so we started to learn about their lives... coming to hold collective memories of times we hadn't experienced.

We felt the imprisonment of being a girl, the way it made your mind active and dreamy and how you ended up knowing what colors went together.

We knew that the girls were really women in disguise, that they understood love and even death, and that our job was merely to create the noise that seemed to fascinate them.

We knew that they knew everything about us and that we couldn't fathom them at all.

Hi, uh, Mrs. Lisbon. I'm Lydia Perl.

I'm putting together a — Oh.

Hi, I'm Bonnie. This is Mary.

Hello, girls.

Um, I'm here to ask you a couple of questions, uh, about Cecilia.


Oh, great, great.

Um, maybe you could start by, um, telling me a little bit about her.

Um, did she have any special interests or hobbies?

Um, she liked to write in her journal a lot.

That is great.

Um, okay.

Uh, did she — did she ever talk about ending her life?

What's going on here?

Um, you must be Mrs. Lisbon.

I'm Lydia Perl. I'm doing a piece for Channel 2 and — You have to leave now, Miss Perl.

The suicide of an east-side teenager last summer has increased the awareness of a national crisis.

I now stand in front of the home where Cecilia Lisbon, a 13-year-old...

Why don't they just let her rest in peace?

...who liked to paint and write poetry, tragically put an end to her life.

Psychologists agree that adolescence today is much more fraught by pressures and complexities than in years past.

More and more doctors say that this frustration can lead to acts of violence whose reality the adolescent cannot separate from its intended drama.

I baked a pie full of rat poison.

I thought I could eat it, you know, without being suspicious.

My nana, who was 86...

She really liked sweets.

She had three pieces.

I feel sorriest for the mother.

I know.

You would always wonder if there was something you could've done.

- Well, I gotta go. See you later. All right, then.

- Bye-bye. Bye.

Don't worry.

They took the fence out.

God, you snore loud.

Those girls have a bright future ahead of them.

The other one was just gonna end up a kook.

We didn't see the girls together as a group until convocation, September 7.

Mary, Lux, Bonnie, and Therese came to school as though nothing had happened.

And we felt that if we kept looking hard enough, we might begin to understand what they were feeling and who they were.

All right, so, if we have — And these are Venn diagrams, as you remember.

If we have A and B intersecting, and A and B, if A intersects B, we have this area.

And if A is the union with B, we have all of the circle plus the intersection.

These are the laws of intersection and union. Okay?

How's it going?

Not bad.

Okay, do a character sketch on the following characters from Portrait of a Lady.

The first one is... Ralph.

Um... he was nice.

It was really sad when he died.

Oh, my gosh. I can't believe I just said that.

I am so sorry.

Reading about the alarming suicide rate, I talked to Mr. Woodhouse and some of the teachers here and realized that nothing about this serious matter has been discussed at this school.

And quickly thereafter, green pamphlets were distributed.

We thought green was cheerful, but not too cheerful.

Certainly better than red.

The green pamphlets told us that there were 80 suicides a day in America, 30,000 a year...


...and alerted us to danger signals we couldn't help but look for.

Were the Lisbon girls' pupils dilated?

Had they lost interest in school activities, in sports and hobbies?

Had they withdrawn from their peers?

Hi. I'm Chase.

I know who you are.

I've only been going to this school my whole life.

You don't have to talk to me.

So, for example, we have two different types of economics, or so-called two different types of economics.

Now, the first one, we would say, is called macroeconomics, which is...

Look. She's laughing.

He made her laugh.

I never heard him say anything remotely intelligent.

The boys who talked with Lux were always the stupidest boys and made terrible sources of information.

Squeezebox. She's all right.

Let me tell you, she's the hottest girl in the school, for sure.

You wanna know what happened? Smell my fingers, man.

Nah, she didn't talk about Cecilia.

We weren't exactly talking, if you know what I mean.

But the only reliable boy who actually got to know Lux... was Trip Fontaine, who, only eight months before the suicides, had emerged from baby fat to the delight of girls and mothers alike.

I'm late again.

Oh, come on.

Thank you.

♪ Cold, late night so long ago ♪

♪ When I was not so strong, you know ♪

♪ Pretty man came to me ♪

♪ Never seen eyes so blue ♪

♪ You know, I could not run away, it seemed ♪

♪ We'd seen each other in a dream ♪

♪ Seemed like he knew me ♪

♪ He looked right through me ♪

♪ Yeah ♪

♪ "Come on home, girl" He said with a smile ♪

♪ "You don't have to love me ♪

♪ Yet let's get high a while" ♪

♪ But try to understand ♪

♪ Try to understand ♪

♪ Try, try, try to understand ♪

♪ He's a magic man, Mama ♪

♪ Oh, he's a magic man ♪

All the girls at our school were in love with Trip.

All the girls except for Lux.

Trip told us his passion for Lux Lisbon all started when he went into the wrong history class during fifth period.

As was his custom, he went out to his car to smoke the marijuana he took as regularly as Peter Petrovich, the diabetic kid, took his insulin.

On this particular day he ran into Mr. Woodhouse in the hall and ducked into the nearest class.

She was the still point of the turning world, man.

I never got over that girl.


I mean, you know, I loved a lot of ladies, but not like that.

That was real.

I'll never forget the first time I saw her.

I didn't know what had hit me.

I-I didn't know what to do.

It was so easy with all the other girls.

But she wouldn't look at me.

I, uh — I was never the kind to pursue, if you know what I mean.

That girl drove me crazy, man.

Mmm, yummy. Warm. Mm-hmm.

Hey, Lux.


Look at him.

It's just meat on bread. Ew. Sick.

Thanks, Mom.

♪ I can think of younger days ♪

Trip's dad was little help.

Well, first off, don't call her on the phone.

It's all, um — It's all subtlety.

It's all nuance.

Yeah, yeah. You just need to talk to her at school, you know.

About anything. About, uh, the weather or school assignments.

Um, you know, anything to have the chance to communicate with the language of eye contact.

A-And, uh, project confidence.

And, uh, keep the hair out of your eyes.

She'll feel the vibe.

♪ How can you mend ♪

♪ A broken heart? ♪

♪ Oh ♪ And be yourself. Yeah.

The word "hurricane" is the name given to nature's strongest storm.

A hurricane occurs when high pressure and low pressure masses of air come in contact with one another.

There is often a significant difference in temperature between the two masses.

One mass is warm, while the other is cold.

The warmer air rises and the cooler air falls.

Likewise, the low pressure area slides down the sides of the high pressure area.

They swirl in and around one another, creating the beginnings of the storm.

In this footage, taken from US Navy weather patrol aircraft, we can clearly observe the two masses — one high pressure and one low pressure — coming in contact with one another.

The result is a surging storm of tremendous strength that strikes with forceful determination.

Even though the hurricane is the most powerful storm known to all of us — as it strikes large land areas, such as continents or large islands, it slowly dies.

That must've been Conley.

His ass is grass.

I'm gonna ask you out.

Fat chance.

First I'm gonna come over to your house on Sunday and watch the tube.

Then I'm gonna ask you out.

...resulting in few injuries and much less destruction of public services and community functions than this graphic footage would indicate.

You're a stone fox.

The hurricane, one of the most truly awe-inspiring and spectacular storms nature has to offer.

What channel is this?

Five. Ah, let's see.

Um, "Animals in the wild.

Journey through the African Kalahari as we visit exotic animals in their natural habitat."

I think that sounds very nice, don't you?

Now to the southwest, this huge rain forest eventually gives way to expansive, arid grasslands that stretch to the horizon in all directions.

This is the Kalahari.

Uh, do you want some more pop?

Yeah, sure. Thank you.


The wildlife spectacle played out on these vast, open grasslands and in the deep recesses of the rain forest is unparalleled anywhere on Earth.

Lux, please put your feet down, honey.

The Kalahari and its vast, open skies provide the theater for the elemental life-and-death drama played out by the plentiful four-footed herds and the great hunting cats that prey on them.

Oh, my.

I-I-It's getting so late. Honey?

Yeah. Oh! I said it's getting late.

Well, uh, Skip, we usually, uh, hit the hay about now, so...

Right. Yeah.

Okay. Okay. Thank you.

Okay, so... It was nice to meet you, Mrs. Lisbon.

Yes. Thank you.

Good night. See ya.




♪ If we still have time We might still get by ♪

♪ Every time I think about it I wanna cry ♪

♪ With bombs and the devil And the kids keep comin' ♪ Gotta get back for bed check.

♪ No time to be young ♪

♪ Well, I tell myself That I was doin' all right ♪

♪ There's nothin' left to do tonight ♪

♪ But go crazy on you ♪

Uh, this is fourth period, Trip. I don't have you until fifth, do I?

Uh, no. Oh.

I'm not here for math today, sir.

Look, I'm here to tell you that my intentions for your daughter are entirely honorable.

What might those intentions be?

I wanna ask Lux to the homecoming dance.

Trip, why don't you sit down for a minute.

All right.

You see, my wife and I have certain rules.

They've been the same rules for the older girls, and I can't very well go and change them now for the younger ones.

Even if I wanted to, the wife wouldn't let me. It's true.

So, uh, if you wanna come over and watch television again, that would be fine.

But you cannot take Lux out, especially not in a car.

So, I'm sorry, son. That's just our policy.

Okay, sir, what if — what if there was a bunch of us guys and we took all your daughters out in a group and we had 'em back by whatever time that you said?

You on the football squad son?

Yes, sir. Oh. What position?

Defensive corner back.

Ah. Well, uh, good. Good.

I was a — I was a safety in my day.

Well, that's a crucial position, sir.

Nothing between you and the goal line. Exactly. Exactly.

Uh, well...

So, the thing is, sir, we've got the big game against Country Day, and then afterwards we have the dance and everything, and... like, all the other guys are taking dates.

You're a good-looking fellow, Trip. Lots of girls would go with you, I bet.

Yeah, well, I'm not interested in lots of girls, sir.

I'll take it up with the wife, Trip, do what I can.

Thank you, sir.

It's a classic. It's really dark. Oh.


Uh, Trip Fontaine and, uh, some of the other boys on the football squad have asked to take the girls to the homecoming dance.

You know how I feel about that sort of thing.

But, dear, I'm gonna be a chaperone at the dance.

Oh, come on, Mom, please.

Your father and I will discuss it later.

Mr. Fontaine, may I speak with you, please?

Now, my wife and I have, uh, had a little talk, and we've come to a decision about your request.



Taking Lux Lisbon to Homecoming.

All I need is three guys to take the other girls.

I'll give you three joints, Trip.

Come on, Trip, man. You pick me, we can take my dad's Caddie.

You gotta pick me, Tripster.

Trip, man, you owe me.

I saved your ass with Woodhouse that time.

Oh, thanks, Dad! Okay, okay, okay.

Who are the other boys?

Uh, let's see. Parker Denton and Jake Conley.

He's a very good student, dear. And, uh, uh, Kevin Head.

Who's taking who? Whom.

They're just gonna raffle us off.

It didn't make any difference which pattern of their dream dresses the girls each chose.

Mrs. Lisbon added an inch to the bust line and two inches to the waist and hems.

And the dresses came out as four identical sacks.

Everybody decent? Yeah.

Okay, come on.

Oh, sorry. Okay, here we go. Okay, come on. Together.

There's a leak. And cheddar cheese.

I'm so excited.

You're in my way.

We ready? Let's go.

Ready, man.

Let's do it.

In the end, Parkie won because of the Cadillac, Kevin Head because he had the killer weed, and Joe Hill Conley because he won all the school prizes, which Trip thought would impress Mr. and Mrs. Lisbon.

Hello, boys. Hello, Mrs. Lisbon.

Come in.

Thank you.

Uh, who — who's driving?

I am.

How long have you had your license?

Two months, but I had my learner's permit for a year before that.

You know, we — we almost never allow the girls to go out in cars unless it's necessary.

There's so many accidents nowadays. I'm sure you will be very careful.

Oh, yes, ma'am. Okay, third degree's over.


I better get going. I'll see you at the dance, huh?

See you there, Mr. Lisbon. Okay.

Bye, dear.

See you later. Yeah. Good.

Girls? Come on down.

The boys are here.

We got white ones.

We didn't know what you were wearing.

The guy, the flower guy, said that white would go with anything, so...

I'm glad you got white.

Why don't you pin them on?



Don't stick me.

Almost, almost.

This isn't... gonna work.

Just — Popped off right away.


There we go. All right.

Let's do it. All right.

Bye, Mom.



Oh, my gosh. Look, you guys. Her car's there late again.

I'm sure Mr. Leo's having an affair with the maid.

I saw him follow her into the laundry room.

Ew! He's so fat, and that red nose.

Totally an alcoholic. Yeah, and what about the Hessens?

You know they're Nazis. They're Nazi sympathizers, Bonnie.

They had a fit when the Schwartzmans tried to join the tennis club.

Nice aluminum siding.

Do they really think that looks okay?

You know Mr. Kreigers ordered that from TV late at night.

Look, it's the Baldinos' barbecue tree stump.

I have never seen them barbecue on that thing.

Actually, it's an escape tunnel for Sammy the Shark.

It leads to a river where he keeps his speedboat.

Yeah, I mean Paul goes down there all the time.

He can get into anyone's basement through the storm sewers.

No way. Yeah.


Dad'll smell it on you.

No, I got mints.

He'll smell it on your clothes.

I'll just tell him some kids were smoking in the bathroom.

Don't let it die a virgin.

That's gross. Yeah, grow up, Conley.

♪ Run, sailing softly through the sun ♪

♪ In a broken stone-age dawn ♪

♪ You fly so high ♪

♪ I get a strange magic ♪

♪ Oh, what a strange magic ♪

♪ Oh, it's a strange magic ♪

♪ Got a strange magic ♪

♪ Got a strange magic ♪ Uh, do you wanna dance? Sure.

♪ You're walking meadows in my mind ♪

♪ Making waves across my time ♪

♪ Oh, no ♪

♪ Oh, no ♪

♪ I get a strange magic ♪

♪ Oh, what a strange magic ♪ We've been having such lovely weather, don't you think?


Yeah, it's been nice.

♪ Got a strange magic ♪

♪ Got a strange magic ♪ Good evening, everyone.

If I could have your attention for just a moment.

I hope you're all having a good time. Sure looks like it.

The dance committee headed by Sabrina Gonner really outdid themselves this time.

I'd, uh, like to open the voting for homecoming king and queen.

The ballot box is over at the refreshments table, so please cast your votes, and we'll make the announcement in a little while.

Thank you.

Did anybody see you come in?


What about you? No.

You'll love it.

Peach Schnapps.

Babes love it.

♪ I'm not in love ♪

♪ So don't forget it ♪

♪ It's just a silly phase I'm goin' through ♪ This stuff tastes really good.

♪ And just because ♪ I don't want any, thanks.

Come on. Just a taste. A tiny taste.

Don't be such a goody-goody.

♪ I'm not in love ♪ Don't swallow it.

♪ It's because ♪

♪ I'd like to see you ♪

♪ But then again ♪

♪ That doesn't mean You mean that much to me ♪

♪ I'm not in love ♪

♪ No, no ♪

♪ It's because ♪

Can I have everyone's attention, please?

Thank you.

I'd like you all to put your hands together for this year's king and queen...

Trip Fontaine and Lux Lisbon.

♪ Some happy, some sad ♪

♪ Think of childhood friends ♪

♪ And the dreams we had ♪

♪ We lived happily forever ♪

♪ So the story goes ♪

♪ But somehow we missed out ♪ All right, Luxie!

♪ On that pot of gold ♪

♪ But we'll try ♪

♪ Best that we can ♪

♪ To carry on ♪

♪ A gathering of angels ♪

♪ Appeared above my head ♪

♪ They sang to me this song of hope ♪

♪ And this is what they said ♪

♪ They said, "Come sail away ♪

♪ Come sail away ♪

♪ Come sail away with me ♪

♪ Come sail away, come sail away ♪

♪ Come sail away with me" ♪

I'm having the best time.

Let's go for a walk.

We better not. We've gotta go back in a minute.

We can keep an eye on the car. It won't leave without us.

My dad.

Just tell him you had to put your crown in your locker.

Hey, you see that divot there? Uh-huh.

That's where I reamed this guy today, man.

Cross-body block.

Really? Uh-huh.

Maybe they went home with your dad.

I doubt it.

We're cooked. Luxie is. We're not.

Does anyone have any mints?

Sorry. No.

Bye, Parkie.

We'll walk you to the door.

No, don't.

Why not?

Just don't.


Will you call me?

Uh, absolutely.

Bye. Bye.


Are you okay? Did you get hurt? What happened?

Where have you been?

Where have you been? Whatever was — We've been sick —

Get in that house.

I walked home alone that night.

I didn't care how she got home. It was weird.

I mean, I liked her. I liked her a lot.

But out there on the field...

It was just different then.

That was the last time I saw her.

You know, most people will never taste that kind of love.

But at least I tasted it once, right?

Time for your six o'clock group meeting.

Given Lux's failure to make curfew, everyone expected a crackdown.

But few anticipated it would be so drastic.

The girls were taken out of school, and Mrs. Lisbon shut the house in maximum security isolation.

She had done more than just take the girls out of school.

That Sunday, arriving home from a spirited church sermon, Mrs. Lisbon commanded Lux to destroy her rock records.


But, Mom.

This is final, Luxie.

That's not fair!

I said, now.

Now, Luxie!

Come on.

Hold on.

KISS. Please don't make me do this.

Burn it.

Oh, Mom. Aerosmith.

Come on. Please, don't make me burn this. No.


What's that smell?

It's — All right. Um, that'll do for now.

Give me these. Give me these.

I'll put them in the trash.

Whoo-hoo! Whoo!

This was around the time we began to see Lux making love on the roof with random boys and men.

What else? Come on. Is she naked? What's she doing?

You can't tell. Hold on. Get it focused.

You're pushin' it. What are you doing? Will you stop?

Wait your turn. What are they doing?

They're rolling around up there.

Let me see. Let me see. Off.

Hold on. All right, come on.

And she's on him. And he's rubbing his hands through her hair.

Let me have a look. No. No, no.

It's my t — It's my telescope, Chase.

Yes, and what else?

Our male up there seems to be in a Burger Chalet uniform.

Let me see.

Is it — Yeah, the Burger Chalet — You never think that those guys, you know, ever get lucky.

She turns to me and asks me if I thought what we had just done was dirty.

I knew what to say. I said no.

Then she grabs my hand and goes, "You like me, don't you?"

I didn't say anything. You know, it's best to keep chicks guessing.

Chase, honey, come practice your violin before dinner.

You're not gonna believe it.

Lux is on the roof again tonight.

Her hands are moving down. I gotta see this.

Oh. This is beautiful.

Now she's on top of him.

What's she doin', man? Wait.

Now they're done. He's getting up.

That's it?

That was quick.

"N" plus one, and, uh, if the dimension is time, then you would have as your approach — Oh, good morning. Good morning — Have we photosynthesized our breakfast today?

Hello, Ronald.

Hi, Eric.

Your daughters haven't been in school for over two weeks.

You checked out back?

Dini Flasher said they found a new math teacher.

Well, he's gonna have to get another job, that's for sure.

I know.

How long can those girls be cooped up like that?

Just go away. This is our tree.

Girls. Girls, it's a little late.

Okay, this tree is dead.

Why don't you just leave it up to nature?

If we left it up to nature, there'd be no trees left.

That's what it's gonna be like anyway.

If the boats didn't bring the fungus from Europe, none of this would've happened in the first place.

Okay. Let's go.


All right, that's it.

I have an order to cut down your elm tree, but your kids won't let us.


How do you know that tree's sick? Believe me, we know.

It had yellow leaves. The tree is dead, for Christ's sake.

Are you familiar with Aritex? Our daughter showed us an article.

It's a less aggressive therapy. And it doesn't work.

Ah. I leave that tree there, they'll all be gone by next year.

Will be anyway... way things are going.

Look, I don't wanna have to call the police.

Our daughters are simply standing on their own front lawn.

Since when is that a crime?

Uh —

Clyde? Did you see those girls in the — in the nighties?

That's what I want. That's the shot that I want. Okay?

Honey, you're gonna have to move forward. I want those girls in the nighties.

Oh, God. Okay.

Here, let's just back up a little bit here.

Give me some slack. There you go. Is that good?

Okay? Great.

Four sisters of Cecilia Lisbon, the east-side teenager whose suicide last summer focused awareness on a national problem, put their own lives in jeopardy by trying to protect the elm that Cecilia so dearly loved.

The circles under your eyes come out more when you're in overcast.

All right? So you need to wear more concealer when it's cloudy.

For the next few weeks, we hardly saw the girls at all.

Joe Hill Conley didn't call Therese as he had promised.

So we need more colors.

And Lux never spoke to Trip again.

So, you should tone it down a bit. But in the shade — You're a stone fox.

The girls' only contact with the outside world was through the catalogs they ordered that started to fill the Lisbons' mailbox with pictures of high-end fashions and brochures for exotic vacations.

Unable to go anywhere, the girls traveled in their imaginations to gold-tipped Siamese temples, or past an old man with a leaf broom tidying a moss-carpeted speck of Japan.

We ordered the same catalogs, and flipping through the pages, we hiked through dusty passes with the girls, stopping every now and then to help them with their backpacks... placing our hands on their warm, moist shoulders, and gazing off at papaya sunsets.

We drank tea with them in a water pavilion.

We did whatever we wanted.

Cecilia hadn't died.

She was a bride in Calcutta.

The only way we could feel close to the girls was through these impossible excursions, which have scarred us forever... making us happier with dreams than wives.

Collecting everything we could of theirs, the Lisbon girls wouldn't leave our minds.

But they were slipping away.

The color of their eyes was fading, along with the exact locations of moles and dimples.

From five they had become four, and they were all, the living and the dead, becoming shadows.

We would have lost them completely if the girls hadn't contacted us.

Okay, one long.

Two short.

And one long. Mm-hmm.

You got that? That's it.



Send... bo... bo.

Bobo? Bobo.

I just — Watch this.


Help send bobo?

I thought you knew Morse code.

Something here for you.

I got one too.

We racked our brains for a way of contacting them.

Tom Fahey suggested we fly a kite with a message alongside the house, but that had logistical problems.

In the end, the answer was so simple it took a week to come up with.

We called them on the telephone.



Get ready.

- Hello? Go.

♪ Hello, it's me ♪

♪ I've thought about us For a long, long time ♪ Call us. 727-0487.

♪ But something's wrong ♪

Shit. It's them.

♪ To think that only yesterday ♪

♪ I was cheerful, bright, and gay ♪

♪ Looking forward to who wouldn't do ♪

♪ The role I was about to play ♪

♪ But in my hour of need ♪

♪ I truly am, indeed ♪

♪ Alone again, naturally ♪

♪ Run to me whenever you're lonely ♪

♪ Run to me if you need a shoulder ♪

♪ Now and then You need someone older ♪

♪ So, darling ♪

♪ So far away ♪

♪ Doesn't anybody stay in one place Anymore? ♪

♪ It would be so fine To see your face at my door ♪

♪ Doesn't help to know ♪

♪ You're just far away ♪ I gotta go home. See you tomorrow.

I'll see you later.

I'm-I'm just perplexed. We're suffocating.

You're safe here. I can't breathe in here.

No answer.

What time is it? Anytime now.

Guys, there it is. What?

Yeah, it's them.

Let's go. Let's go.

I got the keys to my mom's car.



Maybe we should knock.


We're here.

About time.

We've been waiting for you guys.

We got a car. We got a full tank of gas. We'll take you anywhere you wanna go.

It's just a Cougar, but it's got a pretty big trunk.

Can I sit up front?


Which one of you is gonna sit up front next to me?

Where are your parents?


What about your sisters?

They're coming.

Come on. It's getting late.

Wait five minutes. We had to wait until my parents were asleep.

They take forever.

My mom's an insomniac.

We better take our car. There's more room.

Think you can handle a station wagon?


It's not a stick, is it? No.

Yeah, no problem.

Will you let me steer?


But maybe we should get out of here. I just heard something.

It could be your mom. Come on in.

I'll go wait in the car.

You guys wait here for my sisters.

Oops. These girls make me crazy.

If I could just feel one of 'em up just once.


We would never be sure about the sequence of events.

We argue about it still.

Most likely Bonnie had died while we were waiting in the living room, dreaming of highways.

Mary put her head in the oven shortly thereafter.

Therese, stuffed with sleeping pills, was gone by the time we got there.

Lux was the last to go.

It's four o'clock on Sunday afternoon.

Do you know where your children are?

Bonnie, the youngest Lisbon sister, strangely wore a 1920s wedding dress.

Therese Lisbon, a horse lover, had written to the Brown University admissions office — Yeah, Mary always wanted to be a cheerleader, but her mother wouldn't let her, so I was teaching her the cheers.

This has been Lydia Perl with Channel 8 news.

None of my daughters lacked for any love.

There was plenty of love in our house.

I never understood why.

After the suicide free-for-all, Mr. and Mrs. Lisbon gave up any attempt to lead a normal life.

They had Mr. Headley pack up the house, selling what furniture he could in a garage sale.

Mr. Lisbon put the house on the market, and it was sold to a young couple from Boston.

We, of course, took the family photos that were put out with the trash.

In the end, we had pieces of the puzzle, but no matter how we put them together, gaps remained.

Oddly shaped emptiness mapped by what surrounded them.

Like countries we couldn't name.

What lingered after them was not life... but the most trivial list of mundane facts.

A clock ticking on the wall.

A room dim at noon.

The outrageousness of a human being thinking only of herself.

We began the impossible process of trying to forget them.

Our parents seemed better able to do this, returning to their tennis foursomes and cocktail cruises as though they'd seen this all before.

It was full-fledged summer again, over a year from the time Cecilia had slit her wrists, spreading the poison in the air.

A spill at the plant increased the phosphates in the lake and produced a scum of algae so thick that the swamp smell filled the air, infiltrating the genteel mansions.

Debutantes cried over the misfortune of coming out in a season everyone would remember for its bad smell.

The O'Connors, however, came up with the ingenious solution of making the theme of their daughter Alice's debutante party asphyxiation.

Like everyone else, we went to forget about the Lisbon girls.

Al's got the, uh, acting bug.

She caught it from Pinkie.

And I wanna announce tonight that next fall, Alice is going to a little school in New Haven.

I hear they have a great drama school.

In fact, Sam, I think your father built it, didn't he?

That's the law school.

We're so proud of Alice. We really couldn't be prouder.

Aw. Cheers. Cheers.

I've had it.

Good-bye, cruel world.

No, no, no. You don't understand me.

I'm a teenager. I got problems.

So much has been said about the girls over the years... but we have never found an answer.

It didn't matter in the end how old they had been...

or that they were girls.

But only that we had loved them... and that they hadn't heard us calling, still do not hear us calling them out of those rooms... where they went to be alone for all time... and where we will never find the pieces to put them back together.

♪ I'm a high school lover ♪

♪ And you're my favorite flavor ♪

♪ Love is all ♪

♪ All my soul ♪

♪ You're my playground love ♪

♪ Yet my hands are shaking ♪

♪ I feel my body remains ♪

♪ Times don't matter ♪

♪ I'm on fire ♪

♪ On the playground, love ♪

♪ You're the piece of gold ♪

♪ That flashes on my soul ♪

♪ Extra time ♪

♪ On the ground ♪

♪ You're my playground love ♪

♪ Anytime ♪

♪ Anyway ♪

♪ You're my playground love ♪