Alias Nick Beal (1949) Movie Script

In every man there's an imperfection,
a seed of destruction.
You discovered that, Foster, when
you traded principles for personal glory
When you sacrificed integrity for power.
You discovered that
in eight short months.
Climbing to a governor's mansion
from a district attorney's office.
District Attorney. Hello, Jack.
He's in conference.
May I take a message?
Hello, Mary
- Hello.
I've got the Beckford file for the boss.
He's in conference.
Well, can I trust you with it?
I'll take them in.
May I?
- I guess so.
What if it is personal?
You're not an old maid, are you?
The Beckford file, boss.
Thanks, Wolfe.
I don't suppose there's any secret
about it. I'll be 48 next month.
Forty eight. That's just about right.
That'll be all, Wolfe.
Right for what?
There's gossip around.
Governor Lambert's gonna retire.
He's old. Pushing 70.
The race will be wide open this fall.
Very interesting.
- I thought it might be.
I got some more gossip for you too.
A fellow who's 48 could win.
With the right sponsors.
Provided the sponsors are out of jail.
They will be.
That's not the way the jury's going to
feel about your man, Hanson.
I think it is after what I heard today.
Seems you had a subpoena issued
for some books of his.
Books with figures in them.
Go on.
Hanson was gonna bring them down
except something funny happened.
They caught fire.
- I don't believe you.
I'd have brought them myself
to show you only...
I didn't think you'd want your office
cluttered up with ashes.
You're licked, Foster.
- No.
And you don't think so either.
Or you wouldn't be talking
about governorships.
Let me tell you about that.
My people up here have been
complaining about you.
Breaking their slot machines,
closing the bookies,
breaking up the numbers game.
It's cost them and me a lot of money.
Then Hanson.
You missed but I have an idea
you'll try again.
Of course, there's another way
to stop you but that's messy.
Blood, a lot of bad publicity.
I don't think either of us
care for that.
What then?
I gather you're offering me a choice.
A governorship or a shroud.
I wouldn't want to put it...
- I don't want to put it any way.
Suppose you get out.
So you don't want to dance, eh?
- That's right.
Maybe you will anyway.
The Reverend, Dr. Garfield.
- Come in, Tom.
Trouble with Faulkner?
- Yeah, bad trouble.
He and his man, Hanson
have outsmarted me.
Sit down, Tom.
- Ah, Joseph.
Burned Hanson's records.
You must have expected that.
Not the way I had the thing set up.
Of course, I wanted the records
but I knew if I went after them before
the trial, he'd destroy them.
So I built my case to look as if I
wasn't going to use them at all,
figuring on a raid later on
when he was off guard.
One of my assistants secured the
subpoena this morning.
But it got through to Hanson too.
I wouldn't worry.
You've made a fine record
No district attorney in the country
has done better.
No, it's not me. It's the little people,
the corner grocer,
the basement tailor,
the one truck cleaner.
All paying from five to ten dollars
a week for protection.
From what?
Someday he'll overreach himself.
- Someday's not soon enough.
I'm going to get him and I'm going to
get him now if I have to...
I'm sorry.
Why should I be bothering you
with my troubles?
Did you bring the boy?
Wolfe has him outside.
Has him?
- He's a bit wild.
That's why we have the club.
Hello, Reverend.
- Hi, Matt.
Well, athletes.
What're ya gonna do,
make me a boy scout?
I know what I'd do with you.
- You ain't big enough.
Come with me, Larry.
Wouldn't the burning of the books be
evidence of Hanson's guilt?
It would be if i could prove he did it
which I can't.
It's a pity.
After all the work you've done.
Let's go in the office, Larry.
- What for?
I just want to talk with you.
If that kid was mine...
- He wouldn't be here, Wolfe.
Sit down.
I'd sooner stand.
What've they got for for, Larry?
Auto rap.
Want to tell me about it?
Why should I?
No reason except that I was once
in the same spot.
Don't give me that soap.
When you were a kid you wore lace pants.
When I was your age I could lick
every kid on the waterfront
and most of the sailors too.
Lace pants.
But I'll tell you something, Larry.
I found out it doesn't pay.
Not in the long run, not any more than
what you're doing.
If it weren't for Dr. Garfield, you'd be
in a reform school.
What's the matter with reform school?
You want to go there?
Sure. This is sissy stuff.
The guys on the block
would laugh at me.
Do you think anybody laughs at me?
- Well, there.
Why don't you give it a try?
Say for a month.
No. I don't think I'd...
About ready to come home, darling?
I'm always ready to come home.
Martha, this is Larry Price.
He's thinking of joining us.
- Oh, you like it here, Larry?
You look tired, dear. Bad day?
- Not good.
- I'm afraid he's outwitted me.
Oh, what a shame.
Joseph would rather convict Hanson
than be president, I think.
He's the last of our evil forces.
He's the last and the biggest.
He's like an octopus.
Sucking the blood of every little
business in the city.
I'd give my soul to nail him.
Mr. Foster?
- Yes. What is it, son?
A man told me to give this to you.
Listen to this.
If you want to nail Hanson, come
to the China Coast at 8 tonight.
It's almost as if he heard you.
-He beat it.
Joseph, you're not thinking of going?
I would if I knew where he was.
It's a joint of Front St.
Next to the M & R wharf.
Thanks. Martha, I'm perfectly capable of
taking care of myself.
I'll run you home and then drop in on my
anonymous friend.
It's probably just a joke.
'Bye, Tom.
- 'Bye, Joseph.
Well, Larry, will you give us a try?
Yeah, I guess so.
You must have had a tough trip, Joe.
Yeah. I'm two days out and the motor
conked out. And the radio.
For a week we drift south.
Good evening, gentlemen.
Where did you come from?
- Out there.
There's nothing but bay out there.
- That's right.
I'd like two drinks.
Separate drinks brought to this table
and some ginger ale
and a small glass of Barbados.
- Barbados?
Rum, my friend, a dark, pungent rum.
- We ain't got none.
I think you have. A square bottle.
You'll find it.
You'll find it, he says.
As though i didn't know
every drink in the joint
- What?
There ain't even a dory out there.
Well, maybe he swum.
Barbados. Where does he think he's at?
He'll drink what we...
Bridgetown Barbados.
Five years I been here and...
Mr. Foster.
You're the man that sent me the note?
- Sit down.
- Well, a little ginger ale.
Here it is.
That'll be...
- Exactly one dollar.
Look, mister. Nevermind.
Mutual prosperity, Mr. Foster.
Before I drink to that,
you might tell me who you are.
If you like.
Nicholas Beal, agent.
Agent for what, Mr. Beal?
That depends. Possibly for you.
Foster promises clean city
with Hanson conviction.
That's right.
Only I hear you've run
into a little snag.
Some missing books.
- Where did you hear about that?
What would you say
if I'd dig them up for you?
Why would you be so obliging?
I'm just a humble follower of your work.
Wayward boys set right,
criminals successfully prosecuted
and I...
admire you.
Incorruptible enemy
of the legions of evil.
Rather flamboyant way of putting it.
But of course, I'm not
altogether altruistic.
I thought so.
But you're interested.
- Naturally.
How much will this cost?
Whatever you decide is
That's a proposition
I can hardly refuse.
Should we be going?
Canning records
don't intrigue you, Mr. Foster?
You may be wrong.
You'll find Hanson's signature
at the bottom of each page.
And how did you happen to...
Mr. Beal?
- Yeah?
How did you happen to know about these?
I hear things.
Of course, I can't take them.
Why not?
Without a warrant.
Didn't you say you'd give
I believe it was your soul
to nail Hanson?
I guess I did.
Mr. Beal?
Where are you?
"Foster Triumphs -
Hanson Guilty"
"Foster Convicts Hanson"
What's this, Martha?
I thought we might celebrate
Hanson's conviction.
Oh. Sure.
You know...
I feel a little odd.
You're not sorry for him?
No. It's something else.
Remember my telling you
about Hanson's account books?
Of Course.
There's something else I didn't tell you
I stole them.
I didn't have a warrant
to search the cannery
until afterwards.
Do you mind drinking with a criminal?
I don't know.
It's not that serious, Martha.
But you've never done anything
like that before.
I never convicted Hanson before either.
Yes, I know.
But Joseph. Next time
even if it's more important than Hanson
you won't let it happen again?
Not while I have a conscience.
And a wife.
We ought to go somewhere this evening.
How long since we've been dancing?
- The New York trip.
That's five years ago.
- Yes, I know.
I'm a pretty dull sort of husband.
I wouldn't say that.
Mr. Foster?
Dr. Garfield and some other gentlemen.
We'll have the champagne after they go.
Coming, Martha?
- In just a minute, dear.
Eileen, did you fill the ice bucket?
No, ma'am.
Well, the reform element
seems to be out in force.
Naturally now that Hanson's gone.
Judge Hobson tells me
you did a splendid job.
Pulling those account books
out of your sleeve at the last minute
was a great piece of work.
Thank you, Ben. But sit down,
sit down, gentlemen.
The furniture's reliable.
I'll fetch you a drink.
This isn't exactly a social call.
There's a party caucus next week
We're wondering if you have any ideas
especially for the governorship.
What about you, Norton?
You know municipal finance.
You've been on the board of
commissioners for the last 20 years.
I'd like to run; as lieutenant governor.
Why not for governor?
- That's you.
Me? Oh, a dozen better men.
No. At the risk of turning
your head, I'll explain.
Hanson's conviction has
made you a national figure.
And your boy's club work
is known all over the state.
We have nobody quite like you.
We sort of figured on
hanging on to your coattails.
Would you object, Joseph?
I don't know. It's a bit sudden.
I sound like a girl receiving
her first proposal tonight.
I'll make you a drink
and sort out my thoughts.
He'd make a good governor.
There isn't any ice, my friend.
How did you get in here?
I've been here ever since
you started dinner.
That isn't what I meant.
Don't worry about me. I'm doing fine
even without ice.
So I see.
- Darling?
Oh. Sorry. I didn't know
anybody was here.
Martha, this is Mr. Beal.
A pleasure, Mrs. Foster.
Aren't you the man who found
Hanson's papers?
He tell you about that?
Joseph and I have very few secrets.
Then you must be feeling
pretty proud tonight.
He didn't tell you he's to be
our next governor?
Martha, will you take this inside?
Tell them I have some
business to transact.
I suppose you came here to collect.
How much?
Did you tell your friends
how you got the books?
No, I didn't.
We said whatever we thought was fair
under the circumstances.
That's right.
Only it seems like circumstances
have changed.
I have a feeling your political career
depends on my keeping quiet.
It wouldn't look good if people learned
you didn't have a search warrant.
How much?
Make it out for $4,586.11
That's absurd.
We haven't got that much money.
Ask the governor to
take a peek at his balance.
You're a hundred dollars off.
I can't be.
There's that check you gave me
at the office this morning.
Yes, that was for a hundred.
You must have friends at the bank.
- Maybe.
Not backing out, are you?
I gave my word.
Joseph, you can't.
I think Hanson's conviction
is worth it.
Especially with a governorship
thrown in.
Now, if you'll wait
You'll hear me tell my friends
exactly how I got the books.
Well, well. I guest the reports
weren't exaggerated.
Real integrity.
Would be a shame
to take advantage of it.
The first completely
honest person I've met in
a long time.
I'm not surprised.
I'd kind of like to participate
in your campaign.
I think we can do without your help.
You don't like me do you, Mrs. Foster?
No, I don't.
Would you change your mind
if I made a small contribution?
Say twenty five thousand?
But I haven't decided to run yet.
You will.
- Don't take it.
No strings attached.
- How do we know?
How do we know that you're
not some sort of racketeer?
My racket concerns
good government, Mrs. Foster.
I don't believe you.
- No?
We don't want your money.
You letting her run things?
I think she's right.
But I think she's wrong.
Joseph, his money.
Mr. Beal?
Excuse me.
Where'd he go?
- Who?
The man who just came out of there.
I didn't see anyone.
- Neither did I.
Well, Joseph
have you come to a decision?
I'll have to talk it over
with Martha first.
She makes the decisions.
That's fair enough.
Yes, behind the decision of every man
I've found there's generally a woman.
Give me another bourbon.
Hey sister, that's not your drink.
Isn't it? I'm so sorry.
What happened to mine?
- I wouldn't know.
Hijacking drinks.
- That ain't all she's trying to hijack.
How did you get in here anyway?
Look, piano legs...
Piano legs? How do you like that?
Come on, break it up girls!
Break it up!
Break it up. Come on.
Let me go!
Take it easy, baby. You need some air.
Now scram and stay scrammed.
How about giving a lady a hand?
Are you alone, honey?
I'm looking for Donna Allen.
That's me.
I know.
What do you want?
A woman
quite beautiful,
wearing sapphires,
and silk
and sable.
What are you talking about?
Come on, give us the gag.
Are you a cop?
Why don't you come along
and find out.
You sure got a different line, mister.
No key?
Never use one.
Come on in.
Brother, what a place.
Looks like a dame's apartment.
- That's right.
- Me?
Excuse me while I die laughing.
Answer it.
Wait a minute.
He wants to know if we want
some packages sent up.
We do.
Send them up.
Look, what's the deal and
who's this girl?
A girl that's had some bad luck.
- That sure must have changed.
I'll tell you about her.
Good family, two years of college,
and tried the New York stage
only she got fouled up.
Actor named Boyden.
Boysie, she called him.
Only it turned out he forgot to tell her
he was married.
One night they had a fight
and he fell down some stairs.
Accident they called it.
Where you going?
- Getting out of here.
Where do you want me to put them, miss?
- On the couch.
Want me to unpack them, sir?
No. We'll attend to that.
Where did you hear about Boysie?
New York.
- Are you a friend?
I met him once.
Oct. 13, 1944.
That's the night he was killed.
That's right.
What's that?
Cigarette case and lighter to match.
Look at them.
That's what I said.
Put it on.
That wouldn't be right.
- Read what it says.
Donna Allen.
Put it on.
Now look at yourself.
What have I got to do?
Just the opposite.
Reform work.
In a boy's club.
Two hundred and fifty dollars.
I'm sorry it isn't larger.
We ought to be paying you
for all the work
you're doing around here.
This place is in order
for the first time in five years.
You and poor Dr. Garfield are so busy.
I do hope you let me stay on.
We'd be crazy if we didn't.
It's almost like a miracle
the way you just
dropped out of the sky.
I did social work at home.
I missed it.
It isn't a miracle.
Garfield and I have our own opinion.
The boys too.
Do you mind if I do something
rather personal?
Something no woman can resist.
I'm afraid it's not very presentable.
It doesn't quite match your personality.
You ought to wear something gay
for a change.
You think so?
Next time you go shopping for ties
why don't you take me along?
I'll do that.
I hear you've been looking for me.
Yes I was. I called the China Coast.
Miss Allen, this is Mr. Beal.
How do you do, Mr. Beal?
Glad to know you.
I've got something for you.
Sure you don't want it
now that you know it isn't hot?
I hear you had the
serial numbers checked.
Mrs. Foster thought.
-She would.
But the deal still goes.
You'll be needing money
for your campaign.
I haven't even been
nominated yet, Mr. Beal.
But they're meeting tonight,
aren't they?
Yes but no telling what might happen.
Joseph, it's six o'clock.
Is it? I'll get my hat and
be right with you.
Hello, Miss Allen.
- Hello, Doctor.
Something interest you, Reverend?
I don't know.
You remind me of something.
Someone I...
- It's not impossible.
Would you mind telling me your name?
Around here it's Beal. Nick Beal.
I thought you two had met.
This is Dr. Garfield.
I know.
But we've got to get along.
Come on, Miss Allen.
I'm sorry if I seemed rude.
I had a strange feeling
I'd seen you before.
I don't do much business with preachers.
Alright, fellows.
Form over here.
Come on, come on let's go.
Hello, Larry.
How are you doing?
OK I guess, Mr. Foster.
That's the ticket.
We have an old fashioned
custom here, Mr.Beal.
Every afternoon at the end of the day
someone reads the boys a passage
from the Bible.
And whenever it's possible
we try to have someone different read.
It makes them realize
that the Bible belongs to us all.
Would you like to read?
What do I know about things like that?
That doesn't matter.
I've marked a passage.
It's one of the psalms of David.
No. It's your book, read it yourself.
The earth is the Lord's
and the fullness thereof.
The world and they that dwell therein
For He had founded it upon the seas,
established it upon the floods.
Who shall ascend
into the hill of the Lord?
And who shall stand in His holy place?
He that hath clean hands
and a pure heart.
Who hath not lifted
up his soul to vanity
nor sworn deceitfully.
He shall receive
the blessings of the Lord
and righteousness
and the God of his salvation.
This is the generation of them
that's seeking.
that seek thy face. Amen.
About ready, darling?
What in the world are you doing?
I haven't got a tie
that's fit to wear out.
What's the matter with those?
No color they're drab.
They make me feel like
a retired undertaker.
I'm sure the Whites know
you're not a retired undertaker.
I'm aware of that, Martha.
But if a man feels gay,
he wants a gay tie.
Even if it is only to a bridge party.
Alright, darling, I'll buy you some
first thing in the morning.
No you won't.
You have a picture of me as if
I were a doddering old fossil.
I'll buy them myself.
Does somebody else have
a different picture, Joseph?
Why do you say that?
Maybe intuition.
Mr. Foster.
Come in, Eileen.
There's a man downstairs
says he has to see you.
He's acting sort of queer.
Excuse me.
Help me with these will you, Eileen?
- Yes ma'am.
Mr. Foster?
- My name is Finch.
Henry T. Finch
You got someplace we can talk?
In the library but I haven't much time.
I haven't either.
I have to get out of town.
I've been hiding but they're on to me.
You see, they think I did it.
Did what, Mr. Finch?
I guess I'm not making much sense.
I'm nervous.
I was bookkeeper
at the Highwater Cannery.
I kept Hanson's books on the side.
Let's go in here.
You're the man we were trying
to find during the trial.
So were they.
The funny thing is I burned those books
the day Hanson told me.
Then you came up with them.
Same figures, same signatures.
I saw the photographs in the papers.
Are you trying to say
the books were faked?
I'm not blaming you, Mr. Foster.
You had to do it to get him.
But you sure put me on the spot.
That's why I got to clear out.
A couple of thousand could carry me.
This is a very feeble attempt
at blackmail.
No. You got it wrong.
I'm helping you.
Otherwise I'd have to get
police protection,
tell about the books.
Who put you up to this?
You didn't burn any books.
Yes, sir.
I burned them all.
Watched them go up in smoke.
As close as I am to you.
Maybe you didn't know they were faked.
China Coast?
I want to speak to Mr. Beal.
Nick Beal.
Oh, he's not?
Will you ask him to call Mr. Foster
if he comes in?
Yes. That's right.
I wish I knew what kind of game
you were up to.
Hurry. The Whites are here.
There's too many people here.
I gotta go.
I'll see you at your office at ten.
I burned them, Mr. Foster.
Joseph, we're waiting for you.
Yes, I'm coming.
What's the matter?
I'll have to leave in an hour or so.
Wolfe promised to show me
some papers around ten.
There was a message for you.
- I got it.
How did it go?
Is he going to meet you?
Ten at his office.
I got the pipe.
I don't know why you want it.
I collect them.
Don't tell him.
Tell me something?
You know I did burn Hanson's books.
You don't believe me.
Sure I believe you.
Then how?
Probably copied them
before the trial began.
Yeah. That's all.
That would be smart.
I better go. It's already ten.
Won't be necessary.
The money.
I've got it.
You have?
That's swell. I was kind of nervous.
Only not here.
Mr. Beal?
- Yeah.
You forgot your pipe.
Did I?
You sure you have the money?
You been trying to find me?
Yes, I have.
What for?
I was talking to Hanson's bookkeeper.
I thought he'd skipped town.
- No, he's here.
He's supposed to be here at ten.
He has a very odd story, Beal.
Says he personally
burned Hanson's books.
Claims the ones we used
are counterfeit.
They looked alright, didn't they?
If they're faked, I want to know it.
What did the guy want?
I'm not sure.
Why else would he pick the night
they're deciding who's
going to run for governor?
I don't know.
I wouldn't worry.
It's quarter past ten
I'll lay even money the fellow
doesn't even come.
That's beside the point.
I want to know
if those books were faked.
What do you think?
I'm asking you.
Yes or no?
Take it easy.
How could they be faked
if they were burned?
By putting ashes
through a printing press?
I want a direct answer, Beal.
- Don't touch me.
I don't like to be touched.
Besides what's the difference
if they were faked?
I have to admit in this trial
and set Hanson free.
And blow the governorship sky high?
That doesn't matter.
I happen to have a conscience
about these things.
Oh. Hello, Ben.
Yes. I knew the committee was meeting.
Oh, they have?
Well, tell the committee
that I'd be very pleased
to accept the nomination.
If we can get all the churches
in the state...
...staring a series of sermons
on good government...
We want to blast Kennis.
Yes on that tax decree.
-What about
That'll be fine. Mimeograph some copies
to our list of women's clubs.
May I see it please?
No, no. Change this.
Joseph Foster means good government.
Just Foster on top and
good government below.
Print 5000 copies to begin with.
Yes, Miss Allen.
He hasn't come in yet?
No, Mr. Norton, I'm sorry he hasn't.
But it's nearly three o'clock.
Well, the jury's luncheon
lasted longer than we expected.
Miss Allen speaking.
You'll have to ask
at the regular press conference.
Is the committee still in there?
They've been waiting for over an hour.
Let them wait.
You should have been with us.
A thousand women and
ten thousand questions.
The governor wowed them.
I knew he would.
I wish everybody had as much faith
in me as you have.
Everybody doesn't know you
as well as I do.
Don't overplay it, sugar.
Sorry I'm a bit late, gentlemen.
It was an interesting gathering.
Joseph, I'm afraid we have
some bad news for you.
The Stafford report.
What about it?
Indicates you were run more than
a hundred thousand short of Kennedy.
Couldn't be wrong.
It's accurate to more than one percent.
What should we do?
We keep working and hope
something will happen.
Kennedy's too smart for that.
You've got just one chance.
And what's that, Mr. Beal?
Make a deal with Faulkner
and his downstate machine.
You're not serious?
You want to win, don't you?
Not that much!
- We couldn't!
Biggest crook in the state.
Just the kind of people
we're out to beat.
What do you say, Joseph?
I agree with these gentlemen, of course.
It would negate everything we stand for.
It's out of the question.
I'm surprised you'd suggest
such a proposition.
Gentlemen, shall we consider
next week's agenda?
Feeling low?
I'm disappointed.
You don't like the Faulkner idea, huh?
No, I don't.
That's too bad because
the deal's already made.
I set it up the day before yesterday.
You set it up?
No charge, Governor.
I'm going to toss you
through that window.
I don't like anyone to touch me.
But get out.
I'll get out after I speak my piece.
Whose team do you think I'm playing on?
I don't know and I don't care.
I'm playing on yours.
I'm trying to help you.
I want you to be governor.
If I've done wrong,
you can repudiate it.
And me too.
Alright, I intend to.
And sell the state down the river
at the same time?
It's funny about reformers.
They're all colorblind.
They see everything
either in black or white.
No in-betweens, no greys.
They don't realize that politics
is full of greys; all different shades.
Like in this case.
In order to do good as governor
you must be elected first.
And to be elected you must
make a deal with Faulkner.
Sure, that's kind of grey.
But it's white beside Kennedy's color.
You know that, don't you?
Are you through?
And it's funny about you being sore.
You didn't set the deal.
Your conscience is clear.
After you're governor all you have to do
is throw Faulkner
a couple of scraps from the table.
Get out.
Get out.
I'd think it over.
Would you like to
check these, Miss Allen?
Have they been signed?
- Yes
Send them right away.
- I'll get a special messenger.
You've got a date tonight, baby.
Who with?
The next governor of the state.
Better get prettied up.
And don't forget the case.
It cost me three thousand.
Good evening, Donna.
Good evening, Doctor.
Oh. Mr. Beal.
I've been trying to place your face
for over a month now.
Maybe you better give up.
Did anyone ever paint your portrait?
Yes, Rembrandt in 1655.
No thanks, Eileen.
I'm not hungry.
Something's bothering you, isn't it?
Joseph, what's the matter with us?
We used to be able to talk things over
when we had problems.
It's not that girl?
What would she want
with an old duffer like me?
I'd want you.
Can't you tell me?
It's that Falkner machine downstate.
Beal made an arrangement with it
in my name.
It's no problem.
Issue a statement to the newspapers.
It means giving up the governorship.
It's that important?
Yes it is.
It amounts to electing Kennedy.
Selling the state down the river.
I'd rather have you sell the state
than yourself.
That's not the point.
There's so many good important things
I could do if elected.
Isn't that what Hitler said once
and Mussolini?
That's a lot of nonsense.
There's no comparison.
But they made deals with
downstate machines too.
You just asked me why I don't
talk things over with you anymore.
Well, I'll tell you.
I'm fed up with cant,
righteousness and sanctimony.
I'm fed up with preaching.
You're not a wife. You're a missionary.
Good evening, Opal.
Good evening, Mr. Beal.
Tell Miss Allen I'm here.
Yes, sir.
Looks as though you were wrong
about tonight.
He'll show.
Put those down.
- Why?
I had Opal fix them special.
That isn't all that was fixed special.
What's wrong with this?
Same as the dish; too obvious.
Now wait a minute.
- Look, I know the deal.
A couple of drinks,
light down low, half a pint of perfume
and some sultry conversation.
It's worked before.
Yeah, well, it would tonight
but it won't stick.
Not with him.
And i want it to stick.
What do you recommend, Mr. Beal?
I'll tell you.
He's coming up here worried and tired.
He just had a fight with his wife
and wants somebody nice to talk to.
That's you.
I said nice.
For instance, if he wants a drink
you don't have anything like that
in the apartment.
Then he'll ask your advice about
a deal I cooked up
with a politician named Faulkner.
I approve?
Only first you want to know
what his wife thinks.
She doesn't like the idea.
You get sore.
Does she want Kennedy to win?
Is she trying to wreck his career?
Can you remember that?
I'm a quick study.
You better be because
here comes the tough part.
You mention something about wishing
his Martha felt that way.
And that's your cue.
Your big speech.
I've a confession to make.
Sometimes I wish you weren't married
so that we could...
I've shocked you, haven't I?
Don't be stupid. That's you. Say it.
Joseph, I have a confession.
Sometimes I wish that you
weren't married so that we could
I've shocked you, haven't I?
No, you haven't.
Because I've a confession of my own.
Each day when I go down
to campaign headquarters,
I'm afraid you won't be there anymore.
Then when I see you I know
everything is alright again.
And the times we've had lunch together.
Do you remember how many?
- Six.
And each one a red letter day
in my memory.
Now you.
don't say any more.
don't say any more.
But I have to. It's all bubbling out.
No, Joseph, no.
No, Joseph, no.
But what's the matter?
I'm frightened.
I'm frightened.
But there's nothing to be frightened of.
Please, Joseph.
Go now.
I'll see you in the morning, darling.
He'll say,
"I'll be counting the minutes."
How corny can we get?
Nevermind that.
Just remember those lines.
Yeah but will he remember his?
You must be out of your head
because he's not going
to say all those things
or even a part.
This is Donna Allen speaking.
Tell him to come up.
Tell him to come up.
You better hurry up and change.
The black suit.
Put it on.
With you in here?
Eighth floor.
Is Miss Allen at home?
Who's calling?
Mr. Foster.
Mr. Foster, come in.
I'll tell Miss Allen you're here.
Hello, Joseph.
I'm not interrupting, am I?
No, of course not.
I happened to be in the neighborhood
and I thought...
I'm glad you dropped in.
I was lonely.
May I sit down?
You look tired.
I am.
Could I get you some
I'll need something stronger
than coffee to pick me up.
Well I'm
I'm afraid I haven't got
anything like that.
I'm sorry.
- You needn't be.
It's unusual and a pleasure
to find a non-drinking female
these days.
That makes me sound
awfully old fashioned, doesn't it?
You look worried.
That's one reason why I dropped in.
Is it Faulkner?
How did you know?
Nick Beal said something
about it on the way out tonight he
he seemed very upset.
I don't understand Nick.
I'm sure Nick's trying to help you
in his own clumsy way.
I suppose so.
What do you think about Faulkner?
I shouldn't advise you, Joseph.
What does your wife think?
She's very much opposed to Faulkner.
I can understand.
She doesn't realize what
what one has to put up with in politics.
She thinks I'm turning into
some sort of Hitler.
Oh, she doesn't.
She must know that
It would be far worse
to let Kennedy win.
And then there's your
Doesn't she realize that
this is only the beginning?
You're on the road to something
really important.
I wish Martha felt that way.
I have a confession to make.
Sometimes I wish that you weren't
so that we could...
I've shocked you, haven't I?
No you haven't.
I have a confession of my own.
Each morning when I go down to
campaign headquarters I'm afraid
you won't be there anymore.
Then when I see you
everything's alright again.
And the times we had lunch together.
Do you remember how many?
- Six.
Each one a red letter day in my memory.
Don't say anything more.
- But I have to.
What's the matter?
I'm frightened.
There's nothing to be frightened of.
Joseph, you should
you better go now.
I'll see you in the morning.
Really I...
I'll see you in the morning.
I'll be counting the minutes.
- Thank you.
Did you call, Miss Donna?
Where did Mr. Beal go?
- I didn't see him.
He's not out here.
It's eight floors to the ground.
How did he get out?
He could have swung across to that
fire escape on the next building.
But it's sure a long swing.
Going out, Miss?
What's the time?
You just asked me that.
I didn't ask you what I just asked you.
I asked you what's the time?
It's 10:48.
Wait a minute.
Come here.
I want to tell you something.
I'm a heel.
Oh, now Miss, I wouldn't say that.
Don't argue with me.
I'm a heel.
Admit it.
He's a bigger one.
Pushing little people around.
Making up speeches for them.
Sneaking up and down fire escapes.
What do you think of a guy like that?
Don't interrupt me.
What was I talking about?
Fire escapes.
Fire escapes.
You know something?
Got one of my own.
I got a railroad ticket to nowhere.
Train leaves in exactly
What is it? Ten?
Ten fifty.
Twenty minutes.
I'm gonna disappear in twenty minutes.
You think I'm scared, don't you?
It sounds like it.
Well, I'm not. You're wrong.
I'm not scared.
See this?
It's not nice.
It's probably rabbit fur.
I'm gonna take it with me anyway.
Services rendered.
Boys clubs,
love scenes.
What's the time?
You're a great little conversationalist.
You sound just like a talking clock.
Now look, miss, I'm a
Gimme a cigarette.
Least you can do
is offer a lady a cigarette.
I just got time
How are they coming in the 11th?
Can't you give us some partial returns?
Kennedy's leading by 2,900.
How are we doing?
- Still quite close.
Neck and neck. That's not bad.
I'm afraid it is, Joseph.
- Only five districts left.
And the 21st and 22nd
belong to Faulkner.
Kennedy's stronghold.
You'll pick up some votes
in the 5th and 9th
but not nearly enough.
Something coming through now.
Pardon me.
Martin 1-6-5-8
Kennedy 35-6-0-8
Foster 97,493
That's really close, Mr. Foster.
You didn't make any arrangement
with Faulkner, did you?
No, Ben, I didn't.
Then he must be double crossing
Kennedy in some way.
Kennedy 7-8-8-2-8-2
Foster 8-4-7-2-6-6
Fifty thousand ahead. That's wonderful.
Hello, Bill.
Mr. Faulkner.
Well, Governor.
Looks like we're in business.
What's that?
Let's go over here, Faulkner.
Nothing from the 21st yet, eh?
I'd like you to explain your remark
about being in business.
That's what I said.
I wouldn't worry about the 21st.
The hat's full there too.
That fifty grand you gave me
to spread around
will pay off about three votes
to the dollar.
You gave him fifty thousand dollars?
Where did you get it?
From me.
It was only a loan. I'll pay it back
when I can.
Quiet! Quiet everybody!
We have some important news!
We just got a flash.
Kennedy concedes the election!
Speech, Governor, speech!
I only want to say
you've worked harder than any group
I've ever known.
You've been swell.
And I won't forget it.
Pardon me.
Congratulations, Governor.
A wonderful night, Governor,
a wonderful night!
Let me explain.
- Good night, Joseph
Don't worry.
They'll come around.
I wonder.
Of course, they will.
They don't understand.
You're elected, darling.
You're governor.
Now you can do all
the wonderful things you want to
and prove how wrong they were.
How about a celebration? This doesn't
happen every day.
Of course, we'll celebrate.
That's the ticket.
Listen everybody
We're having a party at the Gold Room.
Music, floor show, all the trimmings.
It's on me. Coming, Foster?
I've never danced with a governor.
Yes, I'm coming. With bells on.
That's the spirit.
Yes. just a moment.
Who is it?
Mrs. Foster on the phone.
Tell her the governor is in conference.
Oh, no, no.
You heard me. 33.
Let's get on with it.
- Yes, Governor.
Mr. Beal is here.
Send him in.
Get this right.
It has to last two years.
Maybe four.
- Hello, Nick.
Have you seen the early edition
of the Globe?
No, I haven't
Something in there might interest you.
Read it.
Independent Party disowns Foster.
In a move unparalleled
in political history
the Independent Party today renounced
its connection with
governor elect, Joseph Foster.
Superior Judge Ben Hobson disclosed that
Foster's misuse of unauthorized
campaign contributions
Let me see that!
That hypocritical old goat.
I'll ram that committee of his
down his throat.
Hello, Joseph.
I'm glad someone will talk to me.
I've been wanting to.
What happened to Ben and the committee?
Not one of them will see me.
I think you know.
Though I believe they would have
overlooked the Faulkner arrangement
if you hadn't lied about it.
I didn't lie. I said I didn't make
the deal and I didn't.
But you agreed to it.
But Tom,
You and Ben and the others
have known me for
more than twenty years and you know
there's nothing to worry about
when I'm governor.
I'll have to throw
a few scraps to Faulkner but
that's all. Nothing has changed.
You've changed, Joseph.
- How?
Your clothes for one.
Well, what are clothes?
And there are
there are rumors about you and
Miss Allen.
I know I shouldn't mention them.
Or the story that
You and Martha are estranged.
Is it true?
In a way.
What's my personal trouble
got to do with it?
They're all indications of change.
Then there's the influence of this
Nick Beal seems to have over you.
Influence nothing. He loaned me some
money and I'll pay it back.
That's all.
I wonder.
Have you signed anything with him?
Any sort of contract?
Of course not.
What are you driving at?
I don't know exactly.
But there's something strange about him.
Something eery.
It's a pose to impress people.
How did he get out of your house
the night you were there?
Why was he afraid to read the Bible?
Are you serious?
I know I can't be.
But I am.
And there's another thing.
Somewhere I've seen a portrait of him.
A medieval drawing or woodcut.
I'm trying to remember where.
Drawing as what?
We're in the twentieth century, Tom.
Nobody believes in such things since
the Salem witch burnings.
aren't there a few items missing?
Where's the tail and the horns?
Where's the smell of sulphur
and brimstone?
And where's the contract
you're talking about
signed in blood and promising
the delivery of one slightly used soul?
Maybe the devil knows it's the
twentieth century too, Joseph.
I'm sorry about Martha.
And if people are talking about us
Well, I'm sorry about that too.
Well, I'm not.
You're the one thing
I'm not sorry about.
But Ben and the others that hurts.
I know, Joseph.
The trouble is I can't give up.
I must justify the position I've taken.
I suppose there are other reasons too.
The idea of being governor
the flattery of having people know you.
The authority and the power
I sound egotistical, don't I?
Selfish too.
No, because
I know you'll do the best job you can.
I wonder.
There's Faulkner.
- He's nothing.
And Nick Beal.
Yes, there is Nick.
How do you feel about him?
I don't know, Joseph.
He gives me the creeps.
Someone else said that.
In other words.
Joseph, I wish I...
You better go now.
Will I see you tomorrow?
Of course.
And don't you worry.
Don't let other people
make your decisions.
You make them yourself.
Promise me?
I promise.
Going soft?
Where did you come from?
Down the chimney.
What's the idea?
He's in trouble.
You bet he is.
Nick, what's he ever done to you?
Then why do you want to destroy him?
He's good and he's decent.
Why don't we forget him?
Why don't we go off together?
Just you and me.
Let him make his own decisions.
You and I could have
a lot of fun together.
Don't touch me.
Don't ever touch me.
Are you afraid of me?
You stupid tramp.
I ought to toss you back
in the gutter where you belong.
Keep in line.
I'll talk to him tomorrow.
You won't need to.
I'm taking care of him myself.
The inauguration Thursday,
I won't be there.
Why not?
I think you know.
But Martha,
There needn't be any talk.
You can say I'm ill.
I don't want to say anything.
I want you there.
No you don't.
We're strangers, almost enemies.
For the last two months you
haven't even known I'm alive.
I guess that's so.
I'm sorry.
- So am I.
I've been thinking tonight.
I'm trying to figure out
what's changed everything.
I can tell you.
Mr. Beal.
That's what everybody says
but it's not Beal it's me.
I don't seem to want the things
I used to want.
It isn't too late to change back.
I'm going to be governor
no matter what happens.
I want you to be governor.
To be a good governor.
With no shoddy alliances.
You sound like that reform committee.
Well, I don't feel like it.
I feel sad.
All of the wonderful things
that we've had are gone.
Do you remember the good times
we used to have on twenty dollars a week
when you were going to law school?
And all the problems we used to share?
I know this isn't fair.
I'm just saying these things
to prove to you
that I want only the best for you.
I know you do.
Then you must believe me when I tell you
that Beal is dangerous.
I'll get rid of him.
You owe him $50,000.
I know.
Would you be very angry
if I sold the house?
No, I'd be pleased.
And if that isn't enough, I've got the
bonds Mother left me.
I don't deserve you.
Promise me one thing.
Don't see him again.
I don't know that I can exactly
This is the first really important thing
I've ever asked of you.
I promise.
Thank you.
Mr. Foster?
- Oh, It's you, Beal.
I was just going to write you a note
but now that you're here
Save it for later.
You're in quite a bit of trouble.
I don't quite understand you.
You remember Hanson's bookkeeper
and the coroner's verdict on his death?
Yes, accidental.
They put a new tag on him
a couple of weeks ago that reads murder.
Why didn't I hear about this?
You'd be the last one they'd tell.
Seems like whoever tipped them off
mentioned your name.
But I only saw the man once in my life
here in this house.
They know him.
They also know from your maid
that you had an argument with him.
And from some bridge
playing friends of yours
that you left the house
shortly before ten
which is when he got it.
Where did you hear this?
A friend in the bureau.
I'll tell you it's a very flimsy case.
Sure, only they don't think so.
They'll be here any minute now
to pick you up.
On circumstantial evidence like that?
Oh, I forgot. They found something
on the body.
A pipe with a silver band
around its stem
and three silver dots on the bowl.
And traced back to a set you got
two or three years ago.
That's impossible.
How many pipes in the set?
- Count them.
There's one missing.
Did you have it with you that night?
You don't think that I
- I wouldn't know.
But I got a feeling it's going
to interfere
with you becoming governor.
For weeks something inside me has been
saying I wouldn't make it.
I guess it's been telling me the truth.
Not necessarily.
Because I can pull you clear.
I've been sticking my neck out for you.
Hanson's evidence, Faulkner,
angles in your campaign.
Cost me a lot of money too.
And now this.
I'd like some protection.
And I'd like it
in writing.
What's Mr. Beal doing here?
We're discussing business.
But you said
What did he say, Mrs. Foster?
Martha, can't you see
you're interrupting?
But you promised you'd never
have anything more to do with him.
Maybe I didn't put it clearly.
I wish you'd leave.
You'd better read it over.
It includes a small reward
for services rendered.
Keeper of the state seal?
That doesn't mean anything. It doesn't
even pay a salary.
Maybe I like state seals.
Oh, and there's sort of a default clause
you ought to read too.
In case I fail to make
the above appointment
I do hereby agree to accompany
the aforesaid Nicholas Beal
To the Island of Almas Perdidas.
What island is that?
Owned by some friends of mine.
They need new personnel.
At what kind of work?
Why worry?
The clause will never take effect.
You can give me the state job
the minute you become governor.
Yes, that's right but
I don't like this anyway.
It's too ambiguous.
It might mean anything.
Then you want to face the music?
Mr. Foster.
Mr. Foster.
There's a detective at the door.
He says he has to see you.
Have him come in, Eileen.
Mr. Foster will see you in the library.
May I take your hat?
-No, thank you.
Come in.
Mr. Foster?
- Hello, Lieutenant.
This is Mr. Beal.
Lieutenant Dodds and Sergeant
- Sergeant Harold.
What brings you up here?
We're working on the death
of a man named Henry Finch.
That isn't the man who was
Hanson's bookkeeper, is it?
Yes, that's him.
It's kind of an odd story.
Don't mind Beal.
It seems the harbor detail made
a mistake a few months ago.
They figured this Finch fell
from the pier down to the bay
and hit his head on some rocks.
No water in his lungs.
Then we began to hear rumors.
So we took a look at the tide tables
for that night.
High water at 10 o'clock.
The closest rocks were eight feet under.
So he got knocked in the head
before he fell.
That's what the rumor said.
They found this pipe by his body.
Ever see it before?
I don't know.
Looks familiar. Looks like
one of the pipes
that was given to me in a set.
This set.
One, two, three, four
five, six, seven. they're all there.
Almost a perfect match, though.
You weren't thinking of hanging it on
Mr. Foster were you, Lieutenant?
No, Mr. Beal, we never really thought
Don't apologize, Dodds.
It's your job to run down clues
wherever they lead.
I guess we're both glad this was a dud.
We must be running along. We have
a lineup at ten.
Good night, Mr. Beal.
Mr. Foster
- Good night, Lieutenant.
Would you see these gentlemen out?
Your handwriting is
very legible, Governor.
Good, clear signature.
There's all but the last page.
Take it down to the hotel stenographer.
Yes, sir.
And rush it.
I'll need it in a half hour.
Good morning, Governor.
Not much of a day for the inauguration.
You didn't eat much.
I wasn't hungry.
I've been talking to the boys.
They'd like a couple of things more.
Two members on the power commission,
two more in the marshlands committee and
chairman of the liquor control board.
That's practically every key post.
I wouldn't say that.
You'd still have
the fish and game commission
and me as the keeper of the state seal.
You didn't forget that, did you?
I'm sure you wouldn't want
that forfeit clause to go into effect.
The fellows think you ought to drop that
two hundred thousand for boy's clubs.
The budget's oversized now.
The car will be downstairs
in twenty minutes.
I better get at the inaugural address.
Didn't I tell you?
You wrote that last night.
A really first rate job.
Good morning, Governor.
How about a picture for the Globe?
Your new home, Governor.
Think you'll like it?
I had to say goodbye.
Goodbye? But why?
Just a moment, miss.
It's alright, officer.
Yes, sir.
What are you doing in those clothes?
Everything else belongs to Nick.
To Nick?
I'm so frightened of him.
Something terrible is happening.
Something he's planned.
Joseph, watch out. He's a
a devil.
He doesn't care about anything
or anybody.
Better come inside, Governor.
Can't have you getting your feet wet.
You might catch cold.
Park here, Governor,
until the ceremony starts.
I think you ought to look at these.
Might interest you to see how far
you've come in the past eight months.
Foster inaugural today.
Foster elected governor.
This one goes back to the time
when you were district attorney.
Foster promises clean city
with Hanson conviction.
I think you can read the rest yourself.
I'll let you know
when they're ready for you.
Mr. Foster?
Mr. Foster.
They're ready for you, sir.
And that I will faithfully
discharge the duties
of the office of governor
According to the best of my ability.
According to the best of my ability.
Justice Fisk,
distinguished guests,
ladies and gentlemen,
A few weeks ago the Independent Party
whose candidate for governor I was
issued a statement
renouncing me for certain
political commitments
I am supposed to have made
prior to election.
I never answered that statement
because it is absolutely true.
Through greed, avarice
vanity, ambition,
I made certain alliances
with various groups of corrupt figures.
Alliances which I realize now
will prevent me
from serving my state properly.
Needless to say, I am ashamed of myself.
So ashamed that I am taking
the only action possible.
I resign the governorship
in favor of an honest man,
a man who was once my friend,
Lieutenant Governor Paul Norton.
Congratulations, Foster.
Impressive speech, fine gesture.
Virtue triumphant.
I'm surprised to see you
take it so well.
Why shouldn't I?
Your plans didn't quite work out.
Just the opposite.
They worked out exactly as scheduled.
Except that you lost a governor.
They're a dime a dozen.
But you won't get Norton.
No, I won't get Norton.
Or the state seal either.
We'll talk about that later.
Yes we will. Soon.
Remember the forfeit clause
in our contract, Foster?
Well, tonight's collection night.
China Coast at eleven o'clock.
Got it?
I advise you to be there, my friend.
And don't let the fog throw you.
It won't bother us.
Not where we're going.
Almas Perdidas.
The Island of Almas Perdidas.
There's no such place listed
in the atlas
or on this globe.
That's the way the contract reads.
But if the island doesn't exist
I'm sure the contract isn't valid.
the things I signed in good faith,
I gave my word in effect.
The last six months I've been
acting selfishly and in bad faith.
I'm through doing that.
I'm through going against my conscience.
Your conscience tells you
to go with Beal?
Why don't you talk to Martha?
She's gone away somewhere.
Besides if this is
what you're hinting at,
if there's something
strange about it, I don't want
to involve her.
Then you admit the possibility.
I don't know.
Do you know Spanish?
I wondered if you knew
what the translation of
the Island of Almas Perdidas was.
The Island of Lost Souls.
Strange, isn't it?
But that can't be.
- I know.
As you once said, it's the wrong century
for superstition.
For werewolves, vampires and devils.
For even enchantments and black magic.
But Joseph, I do know this
spiritual problems exist today
just as they did in earlier centuries.
The battle between good and evil
still goes on.
We all fight it.
Every day of our lives.
When you found the courage
to renounce the governorship
you expiated your sins.
You confessed.
You washed yourself clean.
That was your battle.
And it was with yourself not with Beal.
He can't make you
go anywhere or do anything
if you're no longer willing.
Don't you realize, Joseph
you've already won.
Forget Beal.
Go to Martha who remembers you
as you were.
As you still are.
She still loves you.
The two of you can make
a fresh start together.
She's at my house.
Thanks, Tom.
Hello, Mr. Foster.
- Hello, Larry.
838 Kerserage Place.
Dr. Garfield's house?
Are you sure that's where you want
to go, Governor?
Hello, Larry.
The printer said to tell you he was
sorry he was late with these.
That's alright.
Say, Dr. Garfield?
That Mr. Beal.
What about him?
I never knew he was a taxi driver.
He isn't.
I just saw him in a cab
driving off with Mr. Foster.
Leaving, Foster?
Yes, I'm leaving. I'll see you
at home tomorrow, Beal.
Think you'll get there?
Of course.
He was crossing against the light.
Is he badly hurt?
I'll call an ambulance.
That won't be necessary.
I'll take care of him.
He has to catch a boat.
We've got to find him.
That place that he first met Beal.
Joseph said it was his headquarters.
Do you remember the name?
Perhaps Larry would remember.
If he's still outside.
Here we are, my friend.
Yes, brethren, every word is true.
I've walked in the darkness.
Glory be.
I've wrestled the devil and thrown him.
I've pinned his shoulders to the mat.
Yes, I've pinned his shoulders
to the mat.
I wonder if he knows
it's two falls out of three.
Not quite time yet.
We'll have a drink.
A glass for my friend.
Can't get through.
We've got to.
A man's life may depend on it.
I got my orders, mister.
Everyone takes the detour.
Just follow the signs.
As for your job, you'll never miss it.
We've important plans for you.
Wonderful work. Travel everywhere.
Good evening, Mr. Beal.
Good evening, Cuthbert.
Good evening, Mr. Beal.
Hello, Foster.
Yes, you'll be a valuable addition.
Good front, inspire confidence
and people will trust you.
Shall we move along?
The last time I was here
was quite exciting.
The city was on fire.
Picked up quite a lot of
recruits that night.
Made quite a transportation problem.
What are you doing, darling?
Fulfilling an agreement, Mrs. Foster.
No, he's coming home.
I'm afraid you're wrong.
He's given his word on paper.
Right, Foster?
That's right.
I doubt if he put his name
to anything, Mr. Beal.
Take a look.
Good, clear signature.
You'll find everything else
in order too.
It should be. My company has negotiated
quite a number of these.
Your company?
A trading company, Reverend.
With representatives
in all parts of the world
Now if you'll just return it,
we'll be on our way.
It seems to be alright.
Pick it up.
Wait a minute, Tom.
Suppose you pick it up, Mr. Beal.
It's right at your feet.
You've jockeyed me into sort of
a morality play, haven't you?
Only we've a pier instead of
the knave of a cathedral.
But the props are the same.
It's always been bell and candle
or that worn out book of yours.
It always will be.
I'm ready, Beal
If you are.
- No.
You saved yourself
just in time, didn't you?
There will be others who won't.
A lot of others.
And I'll tell you why.
In everyone,
there's a seed of destruction
a fatal weakness.
You know that now, Foster.
You're lucky.
You're luckier than I was when I fell.
But that was a long time ago.
He's gone.
But where?
I wouldn't ask.
You've won.
That's the important thing.
Forget him.
Go home.