As Young as You Feel (1951) Movie Script

#[Instrumental Prelude]
Get a load of the boss, will you?
- What a patron of the arts.
- Shh!
#[Piccolo Solo]
#[Piccolo Continues]
## [Continues]
#[Orchestra Continues]
[Valet] Mr. Louis McKinley's car!
Mr. Louis McKinley's car!
- Grandpa! Grandpa!
- Ah, good evening, Alice.
- Gee, Mr. Hodges, you were swell.
- Thank you, my boy.
Why didn't you tell us
you were gonna play a solo?
When you stood up with that
big orchestra, it gave me goose pimples.
- Really? Well, it's nice of you to say so.
- All that applause!
- Very gratifying.
- What'd the maestro think?
He seemed impressed.
Funny. He didn't look so happy to me,
the way he kept looking around.
Oh, why should he have been happy?
Grandpa stole the show.
With nothing but
a little old piccolo too.
- Do you want to drive home with us, Grandpa?
- No, thank you.
Oh, come on, Grandpa. We won't be
doing anything except a little necking.
Maybe you could pick up
a few pointers.
Young man, it may interest you to know that
when I retired from that field some years ago...
necking became a lost art.
- Good night.
- Good night.
What a guy.
Now I understand why Grandma used to
have that awfully pleased look on her face.
Yeah, maybe,
but times have changed.
It takes more than that
to make a go of marriage today.
- Like for instance?
- Like dough, for instance, you dope.
Yes, I know.
You have a theory...
It's not a theory.
It's facts. I pointed out...
All right, Joe. All right.
So we don't get married.
Not until I'm in a financial condition
to support a wife.
- How? In a comfortable wheelchair?
- Sure, if it takes that long.
[Blows Whistle]
I could keep my job.
Lots of girls do.
My dear girl,
as I've pointed out before...
this world happens to be run
on certain economic principles.
- But, Joe...
- Until a man can take care of his own wife...
how can he possibly succeed
in the broader world of finance?
"World of finance!"
Who cares about that?
I want to get married.
Can't you understand that?
Just the same,
we're not getting married...
until I'm assistant head
of the personnel department.
Oh, you... you economic pig head!
Good night!
- Hey, where are you goin'?
- Anywhere you're not!
- All right. Go ahead. Walk!
- [Whistle Blows]
See if I care.
You know I'm right about not getting
married now, don't you, Grandpa?
Young man, kindly do not address me
by that loathsome word "grandpa."
I'm am not your paternal ancestor, and
judging from Alice's remarks last night...
I am not likely to be anytime soon...
even by indirection.
However, my boy,
if you want my candid opinion...
I don't believe the biological urge of which
you both appear to be suffering so acutely...
gives a hoot whether you're
assistant head of personnel or not.
Morning, Dick, my boy.
Good morning, John.
Hodges, John R.
Walters, Robert H.
No! Oh, no!
By the eternal, no!
Grandpa, you're late!
- What kept you, Dad?
- Business.
Well, for goodness' sake,
it's about time.
Come on, everybody. I don't want to
be out in that kitchen all night.
You're usually the first one home,
Grandpa. Whatcha been doing?
Playing the piccolo someplace?
I had to see the shop foreman.
- I was fired today.
- You, fired?
Retired, I think they call it.
- What for? What've ya done?
- Nothing, Della.
It seems it's the policy of the company
not to employ people over 65.
- Oh, Grandpa, I'm sorry.
- Thank you, my dear.
How do you like that?
Fired just because you're 65.
Hey, you're really 65, Grandpa?
My, how time flies.
Boy, has this been a wonderful day.
First I get pains in the stomach.
When I get home,
I find my father's been fired.
Well, eat your soup before it gets cold.
- I don't feel like soup!
- What's wrong with it?
- Not enough salt?
- Not enough salt. Not enough anything.
- If it rains tomorrow, I'll go nuts.
- Who said anything about rain?
That's all we need now... for it to rain
and for me to catch pneumonia.
How can you get pneumonia?
You haven't even got a cold.
Pneumonia happens to be
an occupational disease with sign painters.
You stand on a ladder,
painting names on store windows.
It starts raining, you get wet.
Along comes a breeze... [Sneezes]
There. See what I mean? Pneumonia.
Pneumonia! Just because
you sneeze once or...
What's wrong with you? Cramps?
Or don't you like my soup either?
I assure you my action has nothing
to do with the quality of your food.
I'm just not hungry.
So if you'll excuse me...
Look, if certain people around here
don't like the way I cook...
just let them say so.
After all, I would like to remind you
that I was not raised to be a cook.
I happen to be a singer,
in case you've forgotten.
Before I married your son,
I never even had my hands in dishwater.
Mother, nobody's talking
about your cooking.
No, but they're thinking about it.
The first thing you know, somebody will
remind me that I came from Brooklyn.
But first I would like to remind them...
that some of the finest people
in the world have come from Brooklyn.
Yes, and while we're on the subject,
I would like to say...
that there is no telling
how far I might have gone...
- if I hadn't thrown away
my career for the...
- #[Piccolo]
Oh, for goodness' sake.
Now look what's happened.
- Poor Grandpa.
- [Sneezes]
It's a wonder I have any appetite left.
First Grandpa gets fired,
then you sneeze, then the piccolo.
All we need around here
is a great big, shiny pipe organ.
## [Humming]
Oh, good morning, Grandpa.
- Good morning, Della.
- Whatcha doin' up so early?
- I thought you'd sleep till 10:00.
- I'm not sleepy.
Take my advice.
Sleep when you can.
- You want some coffee?
- Yes. Thanks.
Only do me a favor, Grandpa.
Don't sleep too late.
Yours is the first room I clean.
I assure you, Della, I have
no intention of sleeping late.
Thanks. Say, by the way...
what are you gonna do with
yourself all day now that you're 65?
I don't know.
Oh, go to the movies, I suppose.
There's a swell double bill at the Rialto.
Or maybe you could go up to the park and
play checkers with those other old men.
- [Scoffs]
- What's so bad about that?
Personally, when I think of
the drudgery I go through day by day...
I can't wait to get to be your age...
so I can live out
my life with dignity.
Dignity can be a very
empty feeling, Della.
Yeah, well, you can get used to it,
like me with the cooking.
Hey, I just thought of somethin'.
With you not workin',
you won't be bringin' any money in.
I'm afraid not.
Well, if you'll pardon
my saying so, Grandpa...
that's gonna be quite a blow.
- Financially speaking, I mean.
- I expect so.
Yeah, especially with the way prices
are going up these days.
Yesterday I went in to buy a soup bone...
just a common, ordinary soup bone.
"Seventy-eight cents," he says.
"Seventy-eight cents," I says to him.
"You used to throw 'em in for nothin'."
"Not no more," he says.
"Seventy-eight cents."
That'll give you a faint idea. Soup bones!
Seventy-eight cents!
[Scoffs, Sighs]
- So what happened then?
- "So what happened"?
So she picked up my hat
and threw it at me.
- Hit ya?
- Right in the mouth.
"Get out of the house," she yelled.
"I got enough to do without you gettin'
in my way all the time."
Twenty years ago, I'd have thrown
her out of the window for that.
I'm a Hungarian.
"Consolidated Motors."
"Consolidated Motors"?
What's Consolidated Motors got to do
with it? That's what I'd like to know.
- This is a public park...
- Never mind! Don't answer.
I'll find out myself.
[Joe] Now, this is the course
I'd like you to follow in all cases.
We'll put the letter on the automatic
typewriter. Leave the last paragraph...
Young man, what has Consolidated Motors
got to do with Acme Printing Services?
- Grandpa, what are you doing here?
- Never mind. Look at this.
It says I've been fired because it's
the policy of Consolidated Motors...
and its subsidiaries
not to hire men over 65.
I want to know what in thunder
Consolidated Motors has to do with it.
Search me. Hey, Erickson,
this is my girl's grandfather, Mr. Hodges.
He'd like to know what
Consolidated Motors has to do...
with our 65-year-old
retirement rule.
It's really very simple, Mr. Hodges.
If you'll just step this way for a moment.
Now, we of
the Acme Printing Services...
are a subsidiary of
the Bessamer Publishing Services...
whose stock is owned
by the Simpson Iron Foundry...
which recently merged with
the McCullough Nut and Bolt Company...
whose parent organization
is United Hardware...
the director to which is
interlocked with Rutherton Steel...
a subsidiary of Consolidated Motors.
- Does that answer your question?
- Yes, but it seems a little complicated.
- Big business. If you'll excuse me...
- Just a moment, young man.
Do you suppose if I went
to Consolidated Motors...
I might get them to change
such an absurd policy?
Why, Mr. Hodges, you don't mean
you'd seriously consider...
going to Consolidated Motors
about such a policy?
I'd seriously consider going to the North
Pole by dogsled in the heart of winter...
if I thought I could get my job back.
Well, I certainly wouldn't advise
a trip to Consolidated Motors.
Even if you got an appointment,
which is very unlikely...
I don't see how Consolidated Motors could
change its whole employment policy...
involving several hundred thousand people,
just to please you.
Now wait a minute, Erickson.
Maybe you could just write a letter to
the president of Consolidated Motors.
- Tell him how you feel...
- What's his name?
- Whose name?
- The president of Consolidated Motors.
I don't know. Uh, Sloan, Stone...
- Do you know, Mr. Erickson?
- No, but I'll find out.
Mr. Benson, who's president
of Consolidated Motors?
- The president of what?
- The president of Consolidated Motors.
- You got me. Why?
- Never mind.
I'll call Mr. Gallagher's office.
Mr. Gallagher's vice president
in charge of personnel.
- Yeah?
- Pardon me, Mr. Gallagher. Erickson speaking.
Do you happen to know who's
president of Consolidated Motors?
Used to be Knudsen.
No, he was president of... Anyhow, I'm busy.
Yes, Mr. Gallagher.
Thank you, sir.
Mr. Gallagher doesn't know either.
Amazing. Absolutely amazing.
Here's one of the most
important men in America...
a veritable giant of industry...
one of the powers behind
the producing genius that is America...
a man whose decisions
affect millions of people...
yet nobody even knows his name.
- Fairliss. That's it... Fairliss.
- He's president of U.S. Steel.
- Oh.
- Thank you, gentlemen.
You've been a great help.
Good day.
Here it is. I found it.
Consolidated Motors. Look.
Harold P. Cleveland, President.
Congratulations, Miss.
Whether you're aware of it or not...
you have just solved one
of the great mysteries of the age.
Listen to him. Since 11:00
this morning, it's been like this.
It means he's thinking.
He don't have to think
on the piccolo, does he?
- Oh, good morning, Mr. McKinley.
- Good morning, Harriet.
- Bring in your book and the mail.
- Yes, Mr. McKinley.
So what have we got for today?
11:00 appointment with
Mr. Gallagher of personnel...
1:00 luncheon with a representative
of the Blakewell Paper Company.
- I'd like some coffee, dear.
- Yes, Mr. McKinley.
Then there's your tailor, the barber,
the man about those shirts you ordered.
- And don't forget your pills.
- What the devil is this?
I don't know, sir.
I didn't have time to open it.
- [Gallagher On Intercom] Yes, Mr. McKinley.
- Listen, Gallagher.
I just got a letter from the executive
secretary of Consolidated Motors...
advising me that Harold P. Cleveland
will be in town Tuesday.
Will I please show him
every possible courtesy?
- What the devil is this all about?
- I don't know. Beats me.
Get Herbert in New York.
If you don't mind, I don't like it.
What the devil does the president of
Consolidated Motors want to come here for?
- Maybe he's just passing through.
- Okay.
But I wish you'd please tell me
what the devil this is all about.
- Have we ever heard of this bird before?
- Not that I recall.
Hello, Mr. Herbert? Just a moment.
Mr. McKinley calling.
Hello, Herbert? Listen. I just got a letter
saying the president of Consolidated...
is coming up here
to inspect my plant next week.
I'd like to know why all of a sudden is
Consolidated fishing around my place?
Well, maybe it is just a goodwill tour,
but I don't like goodwill tours.
So do me a favor.
Get ahold of whoever you can...
and find out if there's been a change
in Consolidated Motors' policy
toward its subsidiaries.
Maybe they've decided to quit printing,
make more cars or something.
Okay. Call me back.
I want every executive
in the conference room at 10:30.
- And cancel Gallagher.
- Yes, Mr. McKinley.
- Make three copies of this as soon as you can.
- Yes, Mr. McKinley.
Listen, gentlemen, the president
of Consolidated Motors...
is coming here next Tuesday
to inspect our plant personally.
I don't mind telling you, I don't like big
shots sticking their noses in my business.
How do we know they haven't decided to
convert this place into an assembly line?
And remember, you fellas are
in this just as deep as I am.
Your very jobs may depend upon it.
Our only hope is to make a good impression.
I'd like to see some drawn looks
on your faces, as if you'd been
working overtime for months.
And I'd like to see
this place really humming.
Gallagher, how about that trouble we've
been having with the Bookbinders Local?
- We've got at least a month
before any action will be taken.
- Never mind how much time.
I'd like to strike a note of accord
in time for the inspection...
give an impression of a factory full
of happy employees.
- What do they want?
- Another restroom on the second floor.
Okay. Get it installed immediately.
I'm not letting our relations
with Consolidated be disrupted
over some bookbinder's comfort.
Harriet, who's head of the program
committee at the Chamber of Commerce?
- Arnold Willoughby.
- I want to talk to him on the phone.
Then get my wife, dear.
- What does he look like?
- Great guns! Don't you know?
- I never saw him in my life.
- Well, of all the idiotic things!
A big man like
Mr. Cleveland, a man who...
The president of Consolidated Motors.
Ah, Mr. McKinley, what
a pleasant surprise to find you here.
- I hadn't anticipated such a welcome.
- You're... You're...
Harold P. Cleveland.
Well, how do you do, Mr. Cleveland?
This is indeed a great honor.
- Thank you.
- May I present my associates?
Oh, I recognize Mr. Saltonstall
and Mr. Gallagher too.
- A pleasure to see you, gentlemen.
- How did you know?
I make it a practice to familiarize myself
with all my associates and employees.
- Shall we go?
- Yes, of course. My car's outside.
- Take Mr. Cleveland's briefcase.
- Oh, no, thank you.
I can manage myself.
Any special department
you'd like to inspect?
We'll start with the handpress department
and the composing room.
Afterwards, I'd like a word
with your executives.
I've already issued orders for all our executives
to place themselves at your disposal.
- Splendid.
- Mr. Cleveland, may I ask...
is there any special
significance to your visit?
Special significance?
Not at all.
It's only a routine inspection tour.
That about covers it, Mr. Cleveland...
unless you'd be interested in inspecting
our personnel department.
I think I've seen all that's necessary.
[McKinley] Here we are, Mr. Cleveland.
This is our conference room.
- What's the matter?
- Well, I'll be a...
- Do you know who that was?
- Sure. The president
of Consolidated Motors.
The president of Consolidated Motors,
my hind foot!
- That was John Hodges.
- Who?
John Hodges of our handpress department,
my girl's grandfather.
- Your girl's what?
- Grandfather. Didn't you see him wink at me?
- Certainly not. What are you talking about?
- AboutJohn Hodges.
The old guy who asked us the name
of the president of Consolidated Motors.
- Yes, but what about him?
- That's him in there.
Only everybody thinks he's
the president of Consolidated Motors.
Really, Elliott, you ought
to see a doctor or something.
Why in the world would
an important man like Mr. McKinley...
be wasting his time with somebody
from his own handpress department?
Sometimes, Elliott,
you're a very stupid man.
Gentlemen, I'll tell you why
I wanted to visit your plant.
As a young man, I had great admiration
for the art of printing.
I still have that feeling,
but in all frankness I must tell you...
that I've been keenly disappointed
with what I've seen here today.
Well, you've got this place
running like an automobile factory...
and that's downright foolish.
Not one single white-haired man
did I see on the job.
Where, I ask myself...
where are those men?
Those artisans.
Yes, those artists...
whose love of their craft has been
handed down from generation to generation.
- Got that, Harriet?
- Yes, sir.
Now, I know it's the policy
of Consolidated Motors...
not to hire people
65 years of age or over.
Perhaps the labor technique of putting
an automobile together requires youth.
But for the life of me,
I don't see how such an asinine policy...
and I use the word
"asinine" advisedly...
can apply to the art of printing.
My suggestion is that you forget about
the age requirements of our assembly lines...
and bring back the experienced craftsmen
who honor your trade immediately.
Harriet, take a memo
to all our executives.
"As of today, our employment policy
is no longer governed...
"by the 65-year age level.
"All employees who have
been retired for that reason...
"are to be notified immediately
that their jobs are open...
provided they wish to return to work."
Thank you, gentlemen. Now,
if you'll excuse me, I have a train to catch.
But, Mr. Cleveland,
you can't leave just yet.
I've arranged a luncheon in your honor
at the Chamber of Commerce.
- What?
- And I've taken the liberty
of engaging a suite for you.
And my wife is expecting you
for dinner tonight.
I'd never live it down
if you didn't show up.
- Well, in that case, why not?
- Thank you, Mr. Cleveland.
- This way, please.
- Pardon me, Mr. Cleveland.
Wouldn't you like me to send you
a copy of your speech?
Thank you, young lady.
I don't think it's necessary.
- I'm sure my suggestions
are going to be carried out.
- Oh, yes, indeed.
Well, Mr. Cleveland, I want you to know
I think your speech was grand.
I felt real honored just to hear it.
Oh, no, my dear.
It's I who've been honored.
Good day.
- [Chattering]
- Is he still in there?
- Who?
- John Hod... I mean, Mr. Cleveland.
Yes, he's speaking now. Wait a minute.
You can't go in. Only members...
- But I gotta find out...
- But you can't!
Today I hear a great deal of talk in this
country about the dangers of inflation...
which may lead to
another economic depression.
In a society as complicated
and delicate as ours...
we must leave no stone unturned
in our search for stability.
- And in these old and expert
men of 65 and over...
- Come back.
There is a great fund of stability.
I confess there are moments,
when I regard mass production
and its subsequent benefits of
a higher standard of living...
as a two-edged sword.
As a two-edged sword.
What are we sacrificing in this
frantic chase for comfort?
Well, for one thing, we're sacrificing...
those simple dignities of life...
which have helped make ours
the greatest productive nation on Earth.
And I think that security and comforts
are wonderful things.
I'm all for social security.
But in all our quests for this security...
let us not lose sight of those things
which have made this a great nation.
Let us not forget
that our economic strength...
depends basically on one thing:
Individual initiative.
We here in America have
a great tradition to uphold...
a tradition of hard work;
a tradition of opportunity;
a tradition that every man may go
just as far up the ladder of success...
as he individually is capable of going;
a tradition that no one
in government, in industry, anywhere...
can tell him what he can do
and what he can't do...
when he can work and when he can't.
In all earnestness,
I tell you, gentlemen...
that just so long as our workers...
can go to their jobs...
with the same fervor and self-respect...
that they go to their wives...
will we be able to fight off
the threats of inflation...
and avoid the pitfalls of depression.
I thank you.
Mr. Cleveland,
may I have your autograph?
Oh, delighted. Oh, I'm sorry.
I'm not permitted to sign autographs.
Company policy.
- Congratulations, Mr. Cleveland.
- Oh, I'm sorry.
- Well, it's about time. Oh, it's you.
- Where is he?
- Where is who?
- Mr. Hodges, your grandfather.
- Out. Why?
- Look at this.
"C.M. Prexy says human dignity
will beat inflation. "
What's that got to do with us?
Look at it. Look at it good.
Whose picture is that?
Says he's prexy of C.M.,
whatever that means.
That's what it says, but it's him...
Mr. Hodges, your old man.
Dad? Ah, you're crazy.
Look, I'm not blind. My eyes
are good enough for the Air Corps.
I'm telling you, that's Mr. Hodges.
I saw him today with my own eyes.
Oh, for heaven's sakes, Joe.
Sit down and stop being ridiculous.
What in the world would Grandpa be doing
at a Chamber of Commerce luncheon?
Just look at the picture.
That's all I ask.
That could be a picture of anybody.
As far as I can see, the only resemblance
is they both got whiskers.
- Not even the same color.
- But I'm telling you, he winked at me.
Joe, look at me. Look me in the eye.
Have you been drinking?
Drinking? I?
I who think of nothing but success
24 hours a day, drinking?
Well, I like that.
I'll tell you one thing.
I'm gonna get cockeyed tonight
if somebody doesn't start believing me.
Oh, boy! What a house this is.
First we get a piccolo player, then
we get a fellow who sneezes just once...
and all of a sudden he's in a hospital
for an occupational disease.
And now we got a lunatic on our hands
who starts seein' things in newspapers.
By George, this Cleveland makes sense.
I'm gonna save this.
I want dad to read it.
Read it? He said it!
- Joe, please.
- So you think I'm drunk?
Well, what else am I to think when you come
bursting in here screaming that Grandpa...
is president of Consolidated Motors?
Okay. Okay, I'm a liar. I'm drunk.
I don't know what I'm saying.
But I'm telling you, I saw him today
and he winked at me.
[Newscaster] Good evening, everybody.
There's good news tonight.
This afternoon, Harold P. Cleveland,
president of Consolidated Motors...
offered a confused world the best recipe
to beat inflation and continue prosperity...
that this commentator has heard.
Yes, sir. Winked at me.
## [Radio: Big Band]
## [Radio: Big Band]
- Have you already mixed the martinis?
- Yes, madam.
- My husband likes them very dry.
- I understand, madam.
- He also likes them served
immediately after he comes in.
- [Doorbell Ringing]
- Yes, madam.
- That may be he now.
- Shall I go and see, madam?
- Please.
- Willie.
- Huh?
- Turn that thing off.
- Okay.
- Good evening.
- Good evening.
- Whom shall I say is calling, sir?
- Me.
Mr. McKinley. I live here.
I beg your pardon, sir. You'll find
Mrs. McKinley in the drawing room.
- New butler. I tell you, the servant problem...
- Yes, I know.
I've been having trouble
with my cook lately too.
Lucille, this is Mr. Cleveland.
Mr. Cleveland, my wife.
How do you do, Mr. Cleveland?
It was nice of you to come.
Thank you. It was nice
of you to have me.
Come on, meet him,
but do me a favor just for tonight.
- Spare us your political philosophy.
- Okay, okay.
Mr. Cleveland, this is our son Willie.
- Good evening, young man.
- Hello, Mr. Cleveland.
Hey, we were studying economics
the other day, and I saw a picture of you.
- You don't look a thing like...
- Willie.
Yes, sir.
My husband likes martinis,
but if you prefer something else...
- Not at all. My favorite beverage.
- Are these dry?
- Yes, Louis. Very dry.
- Four to one, sir.
- Here's to Consolidated Motors.
- Thank you.
If you don't mind,
I'd rather drink to a lovely lady.
Thank you.
- I'll take the tray.
- Yes, sir.
- What class are you in, young man?
- Tenth.
- On the football team?
- Well, kind of.
Kind of? Oh, so that's the way it is.
I used to be a bench sitter myself.
- How about a little refill, Mr. Cleveland?
- A wee modicum, perhaps.
I thought we'd have dinner
at home tonight, just family style.
After that, if you like, I thought we three
might run out to the country club.
- The country club?
- I'd like you to see it.
It's brand-new and not half bad.
Most of my executives belong. Got
a great little golf course. What do you say?
- I'd be delighted. That is, if Mrs. McKinley...
- Oh, I'd like it very much.
Very much indeed.
## [Rumba]
ByJove, I want to dance.
I haven't danced in 25 years at least...
and suddenly I want to dance.
- May I have this dance?
- Of course.
- Do you mind?
- Not at all. Go right ahead.
- What kind of barbaric music is this?
- It's the rumba.
For one moment, I had the wild
illusion it was the Bunny Hug.
#[Rumba Continues]
- Let's get out of here.
- Why? We just got here.
- Look. Mr. McKinley.
- Mr. McKin...
Well, you two must enjoy dancing.
Your wife happens to be
a very beautiful dancer, Mr. McKinley.
Yeah? Well, for myself,
I think it's a waste of time.
- If you don't mind, I'll run along.
- Perhaps we all...
Oh, no. You two stay here
and enjoy yourselves.
- I'll send the car back.
- Oh, don't bother. We'll get a taxi.
- No bother. My driver's used to waiting.
- I'd prefer a taxi, Louis.
Okay. Good night, Mr. Cleveland.
Good night, and thank you
for a wonderful evening.
- Glad you liked it.
We'll have to do this again.
- I'd like that very much.
Before you go, there's just one
thought I'd like to leave with you...
just a bit of my personal philosophy.
I like a man who works and works hard,
but that's not enough.
A man ought to play and play hard too.
I have an idea that
you don't play enough, Mr. McKinley.
That's very sound advice, Mr. Cleveland.
I'll take care of that in the future.
- Good night.
- Good night.
Do you mind if we get out here?
It's only a little way,
but I can't bear to go in yet.
Pull up here.
We'll walk the rest of the way.
Just wait for me, please.
You think I'm silly, don't you?
On the contrary,
I think it was a charming idea.
You'll never know how much
this evening has meant to me.
You don't go dancing often, I take it.
I never go dancing.
Do you and... your wife?
My wife died 25 years ago.
Oh. That's why you said you hadn't
danced in 25 years at least.
I haven't done much of
anything since then, except work.
You loved her very much, of course?
Of course.
People don't love each other
like that anymore.
No. Life's become too complicated.
Young men these days
are afraid to marry...
until they can offer their wives all
the frills of security and comfort.
I don't think it was that way with us.
I loved my wife.
I loved my work.
Life somehow just went on
with a sort of simple grace.
Are you leaving tomorrow?
Unfortunately, very early tomorrow.
I'm sorry. L... I don't know
what's the matter with me.
But I've been so happy tonight...
so really happy.
It's been so long. Good night.
Good night.
Listen, don't give me that
"he wanted to talk business" routine.
Every time I want to talk
business, you're too busy.
But it's true, Mr. McKinley. As a rule,
I never mix business and pleasure.
I only thought Mr. Gallagher and I could
take some office burdens off your shoulders.
Office burdens?
Well, that's a new one.
And another thing, since when do you have
to dress up like that for a business conference?
Okay. Tell Gallagher I'll take up this matter
with him in the morning.
Good night.
You two must have closed up the joint.
By George, you're really
a good-looking woman, Lucille.
And did he go for you!
Couldn't take his eyes off you.
What did you do after I left?
Louis, I want a divorce.
Do you love me, Louis?
What the devil has that got to do with it?
Answer me. Do you?
Well, how do you like that?
She meets a guy one night, and right away
she starts yapping about do I love her?
What's the matter? Isn't my money
good enough for you anymore?
Haven't I supported you in the style
to which you're accustomed?
And your whole family too, for 20 years.
You don't understand.
You've never understood.
Oh, yes, I do.
I understand, all right.
It's you that's cockeyed.
But you're not gonna get away with it.
You might as well get any tomfool
ideas about divorce out of your head.
Please, let's don't argue about it.
We've been married 20 years.
Sounds kind of silly to be talking this way
after 20 years, doesn't it?
I'm sorry it's turned out so badly,
but I've been so miserable.
Not so fast. I want to know
what happened tonight.
- I told you, nothing happened.
- Don't give me that. What happened?
It's just that tonight,
for the first time in years...
I've known what it's like
to be admired and respected...
to be treated the way
a woman wants to be treated.
I know you think it's silly, but it's true.
Just once more before I turn the corner...
I want to know what love is.
Well, that's just great.
That's just wonderful.
You know a man 20 minutes,
and it's love in bloom.
Oh, I realize I'll probably
never see him again...
but I can go on the rest of my life...
just dreaming about tonight.
Well, how do you like that?
We've been married 20 years,
and now you're in love!
Ooh, that looks nice.
Only $20 down.
Yeah, but with the present credit system
in this country, controls and all...
- Joe, we're talking about a bedroom suite.
- [Door Opens]
My, my! Up so late?
The prexy of C. M!
- So I'm crazy, am I? I'm drunk? Look at him.
- Grandpa, your beard!
- Dad!
- Mr. Hodges, before you say
a word, do me a favor...
I'll handle this.
Dad, what have you done to yourself?
You stay out of this!
I want to get this matter settled first.
Once and for all, are you or are you not
the president of Consolidated Motors?
My boy, you've no idea what I am.
There. There! You see? I told you so,
but nobody'd believe me! Oh, no!
- But why, Grandpa? Why did you do it?
- I wanted my job back.
And just for that, you pretend you're
president of Consolidated Motors?
I didn't count on its getting
so involved, Della.
I thought I'd just establish a new
hiring policy and then come home.
You didn't count on its getting so involved?
Boy, that's a good one!
- Get a load of this.
- Oh, an atrocious picture.
You'd think that with all
the photographers in this town,
one would've gotten me in focus.
I give up. Honestly, I give up.
My own father!
Pardon me for asking, Grandpa,
but what happens tomorrow...
when the real president of Consolidated
Motors finds out he made a speech today?
I'm sure I don't know, Della, but I must
say it reads like a very good speech.
I'll tell you what's going to happen.
This is what's called confidence work,
like selling phony stock.
- You can get five years in jail
for this sort of thing.
- Really? So much?
I give them 24 hours
before they put you in jail.
Unless, of course, you turn yourself in.
That way, they might be more lenient.
I was in a show once where this
fellow pretends he's somebody else.
Oh, boy, what they did to him!
Holy smoke! I just thought
of something. That jerk Erickson.
I told him about it, and he's
the sort that'll turn you in...
'cause he knows he'll probably
get a promotion for it.
Just my luck. He turns you in, and they
make him assistant head of personnel.
- You sure about that?
- He'd turn his own mother in
to get that promotion.
Then why don't you turn him in? Why
should that other jerk get all the credit?
- I couldn't do that!
- Oh, don't be so noble all of a sudden.
- You want to marry Alice, don't you?
- Well, yes, but...
- And you can't or you won't
till you get that promotion.
- No, but that's...
No buts about it.
This is your big chance.
I can't do a thing like that, Mrs. Hodges.
If it weren't for him,
I'd never have known Alice.
- Somebody's gonna turn him in.
- Not me.
Grandpa, will you tell rover boy here...
that he ain't puttin'you behind
the eight ball ifhe turns you in.
Joe's of age.
He can make his own decision.
I've already made my decision.
- I'm not gonna do it.
- Well, for goodness' sake, why not?
You've all accused me of being just a man
of facts and figures and economics.
You're wrong. I'm also a man
of heart and blood and soul.
And I'm not gonna do it.
I've got principles.
- Joe.
- [Door Slams]
Well, how do you like that?
After all the time he spent
hanging around this house...
- all of a sudden he's got principles.
- Good night, all.
You're really a wonderful person, Joe.
Oh, she was nuts,
even if she is your mother.
In this awful world, where everybody's
cutting everybody else's throat...
you still have some decency left.
I'm proud of you, Joe.
You have real dignity.
I love you, Joe.
## [Humming Rumba]
Come in.
- Grandpa, I just made a wonderful discovery.
- Really?
- I just realized that you're a great man.
- [Laughs]
I guess I'm beginning to grow up
at last, Grandpa... to understand things.
What kind of things, my dear?
Dignity. That's the word... dignity.
All of a sudden it came to me,
like a flash of lightning...
that there's nothing so important
as a person's own dignity.
It's more important than maintaining
a high standard of living...
or even being assistant to the head
of some old department.
And that's what this
was all about, wasn't it?
You were fighting for your dignity,
the dignity of your work.
And for that, you were willing to
take on the whole complex world.
I think you're a wonderful man, Grandpa.
Thank you, my dear. Good night.
Good night.
[Door Opens, Closes]
[Sputtering] Egads!
[Man On Radio] In our time, we have
grown accustomed to the machine age.
Mr. Cleveland's fine speech has given us
a new realization ofhonor and humanity...
as well as a truer understanding of the
individual's place in our American culture.
Our hat is off to Mr. Cleveland.
He is a great American.
- Read what that paper there
has to say, Mr. Cleveland?
- Not yet.
It says, "God bless Mr. Cleveland
and Consolidated Motors.
They restored our faltering faith."
That sure was some speech,
Mr. Cleveland.
- Kind of makes you proud to be an American.
- Yeah.
I've never seen anything like it.
There must be 10,000!
This isn't even half of'em.
Listen, Clancy, of course
I'm only head of public relations.
I suppose it'd be too much trouble
for anybody to tell me...
when the boss is going
to make a speech.
I didn't know anything
more about it than you did.
- He told me he was going
to the ball game yesterday.
- What a speech!
Look what's happened to the market.
Open two points up across the board.
Seen this?
- That's cute.
- I bet the rest of the industry's
tearing their hair out.
There's something fishy about all this.
Unless I'm out of my mind,
I was having luncheon with
Mr. Cleveland at 1:00 yesterday.
Oh, take it easy, Bill.
That's when he was makin' his speech.
Well, maybe 1:15, 1:30.
But I know it was yesterday.
- Hey, what's the big idea?
- Set up a special meeting
in my office at 11:00.
And get my lawyer.
To sum it up, gentlemen,
it appears that this person's speech...
has not only caught the public's fancy
and brought this company
a great deal of goodwill...
but it's had a profound
effect on the whole market...
indeed on the whole
business structure of America.
The question now is, what
are we going to do about it?
There's only one thing we can do:
Categorically deny the whole thing.
And categorically deny
ourselves $25 million?
Well, if we don't deny it, somebody
else will. Then where will we be?
You're a lawyer, Joe.
What do you think?
Frankly, it looks to me like
a carefully planned maneuver...
not only to create a bull market...
but to put Consolidated Motors
in an awkward spot.
Actually, the speech doesn't really say
anything except what we've all been saying...
About individual initiative,
keeping our shoulders to the wheel...
and giving a bunch
of old men somejobs.
I'd say it's the work
of a crackpot.
I disagree.
I've read the speech a dozen times.
I don't find any crackpot ideas in it.
I consider it a splendid speech.
I agree with everything it says.
No, Ernest, the thing that worries me is,
why didn't I make that speech?
- What?
- You're paid to handle the public
relations of this company.
Here's a fine business talk
that I could have made.
- Why didn't you think of it?
- But, Mr. Cleveland, l-l...
In fact, why didn't
I think of it for myself?
For that matter, why didn't some of you
other gentlemen think of it for yourselves?
I think Mr. Cleveland has a point.
For the time being, at least
until we can make an investigation...
I've already taken steps to do that.
- Then I move we just sit tight.
- I second the motion.
- All in favor?
- [All Responding] Aye.
I know I don't have to caution anyone here
that this is a matter of utmost secrecy.
Good day.
- Uh, hey, Frank.
- Yeah?
You remember my telling you yesterday...
about the president
of Consolidated Motors...
and how it was really an old guy
in our handpress department?
- So?
- You haven't told anybody yet, have you?
Well, hardly.
Well, do me a favor and don't.
It's a long story. I can't explain.
Just take my word and don't.
- Sure.
- Thanks.
Well... see you around.
Hold this, Bess.
Thank you.
Come in.
Mr. Gallagher, there's
something going on around here...
that ought to be brought to
Mr. McKinley's attention immediately.
- What sort of something?
- This whole Consolidated Motors
thing, sir... it's just a gag.
What whole Consolidated Motors thing?
The man that was here inspecting the plant
is not the president of Consolidated Motors.
He's a printer in
our handpress department.
What's that behind your back,
Erickson? Dirty pictures?
Oh, no, sir.
This is the file on him.
The file on who?
On this man who everybody thinks
is the president of Consolidated Motors.
The one who made that speech
at the Chamber of Commerce yesterday?
- Listen, are you drunk?
- Oh, no, sir.
Then what are you driving at?
The man that was here inspecting
the plant was an impostor.
He pretended to be Harold P. Cleveland,
president of Consolidated Motors...
and he's not;
he's John Hodges, a printer.
Listen, Erickson,
if this is a gag, I don't like it.
- I know it sounds fantastic...
- You're getting to be something
of a screwball. You know that?
Me, sir?
I've got to make a choice for
a new assistant around here pretty soon...
and you're not giving me
a very good impression.
- But it's not a gag, sir, it's true!
- What's true?
The president of Consolidated Motors
that was here yesterday...
was not the real president
of Consolidated Motors.
The real president is a man
named Harold P. Cleveland.
The man that was here yesterday
is John Hodges, who works
in our handpress department.
- All you do have to do is look
at his picture here in the file.
- Never mind the file.
You say the whole world thinks the man
who inspected our plant yesterday...
was the president
of Consolidated Motors?
Yes, sir. And then he made the speech
at the Chamber of Commerce.
Mr. McKinley thinks he was
the president of Consolidated Motors.
The Chamber of Commerce
thinks so, but you don't.
- You think he's a printer.
- I'm sorry if you refuse
to believe me, Mr. Gallagher.
Don't be silly.
Of course I believe you.
And by the way,
my name isn't Gallagher.
I'm Harry Truman, president
of the United States.
And you're not Erickson,
you're Princess Elizabeth's baby,
Bonnie Prince Charlie.
- But, Mr. Gallagher...
- Get outta here!
The next time you come in with one of
your fool stories, I'll have you locked up!
Now, get out!
- Mr. McKinley in?
- Who's calling, please?
Kleinbaum's the name.
Mr. Rogell.
Mr. McKinley's in conference.
Perhaps if I could help you.
I hear you had quite a bit of
excitement around here yesterday.
What kind of excitement?
With Mr. Cleveland, I mean.
Oh, yes. Of course. Mr. Cleveland.
- Did you meet him, Miss?
- Me? I took dictation from him.
Yeah? Well, tell your boss he sent us.
Just a moment.
- Mr. McKinley will see you now.
- Thank you, Miss.
- [McKinley Groans]
- [Body Thuds]
- How do you feel?
- Awful.
Here, take a swallow of this.
- [Gasping]
- You'll be okay.
- We've sent for the doctor.
- I don't want a doctor.
- And you keep outta here too!
- I was only trying to help.
Of course you understand this must
be handled with absolute secrecy.
Don't worry.
I'm the guy that was taken.
Why, if this ever gets out,
they'll laugh me right out of town.
- Don't excite yourself, Mr. McKinley.
- Why shouldn't I?
My whole life's been disrupted.
First, my wife wants a divorce.
Now I faint.
All on account of this phony.
Oh, the dirty, low-down crook.
I took him to my house for dinner.
Wait till I tell my wife.
Oh, boy, will I laugh right in her face.
- Falling for a phony.
- We'll take a look around.
- If we find out anything,
we'll let you know.
- [Continues Ranting]
- Meanwhile, you get any ideas yourself...
- Live in a palace.
Oh, boy, will I laugh
right in her face. Huh!
I've gotta see Mr. McKinley.
It's a matter of life and death.
- What's the name?
- Mr. Erickson of the personnel department.
- Personnel. Mr. Gallagher's department?
- That's right. Please hurry.
- Mr. McKinley is very busy.
- Mr. McKinley would rather have
things go along as usual, Miss.
Mr. Erickson of the personnel department
to see you, Mr. McKinley.
Who the devil is Mr. Erickson?
I assure you, I haven't the faintest idea,
only he says it's urgent.
Oh, he does, does he?
Really, Mr. McKinley, I'm only trying to...
Okay, okay, send him in!
Why not? The more the merrier.
I believe the man who was here posing
as the president of Consolidated Motors...
was really an impostor.
- How would you like to be fired?
- Sir?
Listen, you half-wit, if you breathe another
word of what you just said to a single soul...
I'll have you thrown out of here
on those pencil-striped pants!
- I have the man's file! His picture!
- Get out, before I brain you!
- Wait a minute! Give me that file!
- Yes, sir.
- Mr. McKinley, control yourself.
- Go fry an egg!
Oh. Thank you. Don't do anything until
you hear further from me. Good-bye.
- Kleinbaum says the man works
right there in the plant.
- The police been notified?
Wait. You want to
break this thing wide open?
But you can't let a thief,
a confidence man...
go around professing to be
president of Consolidated Motors.
Keep your shirt on. Nobody
suffered any great damages. In fact...
Get a load of this!
Straight from union headquarters.
"Since Mr. Cleveland has shown
a willingness to see labor's point of view...
"and since the United Automobile Workers
are as eager as Mr. Cleveland...
"to maintain the nation's
economic strength...
"we hereby pledge ourselves to
arbitrate all current differences...
in the same spirit of this speech."
How do you like that?
Why, this is the most ridiculous position
the company's ever been in.
- Looks like we're saddled
with that fool's speech.
- That's right.
If we deny it now, we'll be accused of
trifling with the future prosperity of America.
As a matter of fact,
in view of the sharp market rise...
I'm not sure that those of us who have
bought Consolidated Motors stock recently...
wouldn't end up in jail.
Gentlemen, my advice is to emulate that
estimable creature of the sea, the clam...
and say absolutely nothing.
I still say there's something screwy
about a simple little printer...
pulling a trick like this.
That's possible. But if so,
let's just hope he gets away with it.
Have my car here at 6:00, and phone my
home and say I won't be there for dinner.
That's all, gentlemen.
Just wait till you get a load of...
What the devil is this?
The suitcase I bought 12 years ago...
when we were supposed to
take that trip to Europe.
- What's it doing here?
- I'm going away.
You got a fool notion like that,
get it out of your head
because I got news for you.
And get a good hold on the bed,
because when you faint I don't
want you banging your head.
What would you say if I told you
we had a phony to dinner last night?
- A what?
- A phony.
That bird's no more president of
Consolidated Motors than I am.
He's a crook, an impostor.
But I'll send him to jail if it's the last
thing I do. Here's a whole record on him.
Just look for yourself.
- Who is he?
- A printer.
In my own handpress department.
John Hodges.
How do you like that?
I think it's wonderful.
- What?
- I said, I think it's wonderful.
Look, I'm in no mood for jokes. Now, unpack
that suitcase and come down to dinner.
But I won't be here for dinner.
I'm leaving.
Now, listen, just because some
$62-a-week printer in my
own factory dances the rumba...
Last night he made me realize
just how empty my life has been.
Stop crying.
You know I can't stand tears.
Well, at least tell me,
what have I done?
You've killed my life for me.
You've never loved me,
not for one moment.
- I'm 40 years old,
- Forty-three!
And I just can't go on being
treated like a stick of furniture.
I've as much right to love
as anybody, even if I am 40...
What you said.
Have you really been
so miserable, Lucille?
I'm sorry if I've made life so unbearable
for you. I didn't know I was doing it.
Well, it's not all your fault, Louis.
You can't help being what you are.
But you are what you are,
and I can't stand it any longer.
Who's going to tell Willie?
I'll tell him.
This is a terrible thing that we're doing.
I don't like divorce. I was brought up
not to believe in divorce.
We were married in a church, and there's
something unholy about a divorce.
- I wish you'd weigh
this decision carefully.
- [Sobs]
- Willie.
- Hello, Mom. I'm starved.
Yes, dear, I know.
Willie, I have a shock for you.
But I think you're old enough
and sensitive enough to understand.
Sure. What is it?
Your father and I,
we're... we're separating.
We're getting a divorce!
- Is it a very big shock to you, dear?
- Is it a shock?
Boy, is that some question.
Of course it's a shock.
Naturally it's a shock.
I'm sorry.
I didn't mean to shock you.
But I thought it would be better
if I came straight out and told you.
- Here, sit down, darling. Please.
- I don't want to.
I don't feel like sitting down.
- You're angry with me.
- I'm not angry. I'm just upset, that's all.
What's so surprising about being upset?
You'd be upset too,
under the circumstances.
I didn't mean to upset you.
Actually, I'm quite upset myself.
I feel terrible,
right here in my stomach.
- You're not going to be sick?
- I don't know.
I must have some kind of
psychosomatic disorder.
- It hits me right here in my stomach.
- Oh, dear.
I don't know what to say.
I've never felt so miserable
in my whole life.
- I'm going away.
- Where?
I don't know.
To my family in Maryland, I suppose.
Of course, they'll be furious.
They'll want me to come back
and apologize to your father.
But l... I just couldn't do that.
Good-bye, dear.
Go take some aromatic spirits of ammonia.
Then lie down flat.
- Where's your mother?
- Gone.
- Gone where?
- To Maryland. I feel sick.
I'm sick to my stomach.
- I got no time for you. I gotta stop her.
- That's a fine thing to say.
My mother says, "Don't get sick, but
your father and I are getting a divorce."
- Then my father says...
- All right, all right.
Take some soda water. I'll head her off
at the railroad station.
- If she comes back, don't
let her out of the house.
- [Door Slams]
I think I'm gonna be sick
all over the place.
That'll show 'em.
Alice! Alice, I got it! I got it!
- Got what?
- The job. The promotion.
Oh, Joe, that's wonderful!
Now can we get married?
You said it.
Just name the day, and I'll be there.
- All you had to do
was tell that Mr. Gallagher...
- I didn't tell him anything.
He just said, "Joe, Erickson's nuttier than a
fruitcake. How'd you like to be my assistant?"
- Congratulations, my boy.
- Thank you.
You're on your way.
Someday, if you're not careful,
you may even be a Mr. McKinley.
- Yes, sir.
- However, don't forget one thing.
There's more in life than mere success.
Or, rather, you should make up your mind
what you mean by "success."
Remember, it's not just having a job.
It's not just making money.
- It isn't?
- It has nothing to do with those things.
It's what a man gets
out of his work that matters.
Are you doing something you like?
Are you aware of the essential dignity of
what you're doing with your hands, your mind?
Well, l...
There's a stewardship of responsibility
that one of your generation...
- [Doorbell Buzzes]
- Yeah, well, there's the beer.
- What beer?
- The beer I ordered
to celebrate our engagement.
- A case. A whole case.
- Wait. Maybe it's the police.
The police?
Oh, my goodness. I'll go.
Does, uh,
a Mr. John Hodges live here?
- Who's calling, please?
- Mrs. Louis McKinley.
- McKinley? I'm sorry.
He's gone to the country...
- Alice, let Mrs. McKinley in.
- You're... You're...
- John Hodges. I dyed my whiskers.
You must excuse
my granddaughter's behavior...
but we were expecting the police,
so naturally she was suspicious.
This is the rest of my family...
my son George, my daughter-in-law.
- Hello.
- And Mr. Elliott, who thought
you were a case of beer.
- How do you do?
- How do you do?
- Uh, may I see you for a moment, alone?
- Certainly.
- Come into my bedroom.
- Thank you.
- [Whispering] His bedroom?
- So what?
After what's been going on
in the house for the last 24 hours...
you gonna draw the line at a bedroom?
No, please. Don't turn on
the lights. Not yet.
It's a little compromising, isn't it,
not having the lights on?
Well, l... I'd like to
feel a little compromised.
I'm leaving my husband.
Really? May I ask why?
Well, l...
- I told him I was in love with you.
- With me?
But that's ridiculous.
You've only seen me once.
That doesn't matter.
I know you for what you are...
a gallant and wonderful man who
respects me and acts like a gentleman...
even if you are what
my husband said you are... a phony.
- Did your husband say that?
- Oh, he said some terrible things about you.
He said you're an impostor,
and he's going to put you in jail.
But I don't care. I'll stand by you.
I'll even go to court and testify for you.
- And you can testify for me.
- Mrs. McKinley, I'm going to
turn on the lights.
Oh, no, please. Not yet.
Yes, Mrs. McKinley, now.
Though I may be everything your husband says
I am and everything you believe me to be...
I am emphatically not
a correspondent in a divorce suit.
- Do I make myself clear?
- Then last night was just last night?
Mrs. McKinley,
you're a very handsome woman.
You dance extremely well.
You also have a gift
for summing up a situation.
Last night was simply last night.
I'm sorry
if my bluntness offends you...
but I assure you I have no intention of
coming between any man and his wife.
Especially one as impulsive as you are.
- Perhaps if I were 30 years younger...
- No, please.
Don't blame yourself.
I understand, and I deserve this.
I guess I'm just a silly woman
who's made quite a fool of herself.
Though it pains me
to say so, you are.
My husband and I have been married
for 20 years, and this is my first infidelity.
You don't say.
He married me because I was society,
and I married him for his money.
Not that I couldn't have fallen in love
with him. He's not bad-looking, you know.
- On the contrary.
- He has a certain vibrance.
I'd say he's full of vibrance.
Sometimes there's something
almost exciting about him...
only he's not in love with me.
How can you be so sure?
At first I thought
he might be in love with me.
He used to kiss me with all
the tenderness of a... of a...
A wild stallion?
Then after a while,
he never kissed me at all.
Life was just a succession of fur coats
and invitations to dinner.
That's all I've been...
an invitation to dinner.
Mrs. McKinley, I think you're
in love with your husband.
I have an idea that if you were
to kiss him once, just once...
with all the tenderness
of a... of a...
Wild mare?
Mrs. McKinley, I think we both need
some coffee. Let's get out of here.
I knew this'd come in handy.
Here. Hang on to that.
- Serviette?
- [Doorbell Buzzes]
- The beer!
- I'll get it.
My name is Harold P. Cleveland.
I'm looking for Mr. John Hodges.
- They're here.
- Who?
Some man who says
he's Harold P. Cleveland.
- The one with the black beard?
- That was Grandpa.
Here. I'll handle this.
You got a warrant?
- No.
- Nobody gets in here without a warrant.
Who is it now?
Some flatfoot pretending
he's Harold P. Cleveland.
Who does he think he's fooling?
Harold P. Cleveland wouldn't be coming
here personally to make the arrest.
Good evening, sir.
You were looking for me?
- You'reJohn Hodges?
- I am.
- I'm Harold P. Cleveland.
- How do you do, Mr. Cleveland?
Won't you come in?
Thank you.
Mr. Cleveland, meet my son George,
my daughter-in-law Della...
Mrs. McKinley, my granddaughter Alice,
and her fianc Mr. Elliott.
- We're celebrating their betrothal.
- Oh. Congratulations.
- Take Mr. Cleveland's hat, Alice.
- I can only stay a moment.
You're not Harold P. Cleveland.
You can't fool us.
But I am. If you don't believe me,
my chauffeur is outside. Ask him.
- How do we know he's your chauffeur?
- I don't carry much in my wallet.
But here.
Sorry I haven't my fingerprints.
Uh, what is it you want,
Mr. Cleveland?
I just wanted to meet Mr. Hodges,
that's all. I'd like an explanation.
- I think I deserve an explanation.
- I agree. Step in here.
You put Consolidated Motors
in a highly ridiculous position
with this escapade of yours.
And while I'm told that technically
you've committed no crime...
I'd still like to know why you did it.
- Did I hear you say that
I'd committed no crime?
- That's what our lawyers say.
And from the fees they get,
they ought to know.
Well, well.
This is a pleasant surprise.
My son here was sure
that I'd go to jail for five years.
Imagine that, George.
No crime.
What do you know? He really is
the president of Consolidated Motors.
- He is?
- There's no doubt about it.
Is that so? [Giggles]
My, what a crazy evening this has been.
First my daughter gets engaged...
and then the president
of Consolidated Motors drops in.
Joseph, get the president
of Consolidated Motors a chair.
I declare. Nobody's gonna
believe me when I tell them.
They're gonna laugh right in my face.
Somebody give him
a piece of cake... Oh.
It's a Lady Anne chocolate surprise.
- Well, uh, no, thank you.
- Oh, come on. I made it myself.
- My doctor doesn't allow me to eat cake.
- Oh? Why? You got diabetes?
Well, no.
It's something entirely different.
Oh. [Chuckles]
I'm sorry.
May I shake your hand,
Mr. Cleveland?
I'd like to tell people at the plant
that I shook the hand...
of the president
of Consolidated Motors.
- Not that they'd believe me,
but I'd like to tell 'em anyway.
- That'll do, Joe.
Maybe you'd like a cup
of my special coffee, Mr. President.
Everybody says what good coffee I make,
even though I'm not the cook type.
I was on the stage, you know.
Maybe you saw me.
No, I'm afraid I never had that privilege.
Have you any saccharin?
Saccharin? No.
But we can get you some in just a minute.
Hey, Joseph, run next door
and borrow a cup of saccharin.
Please don't bother.
I'll take it just as it is, only half cream.
No bother at all.
You sure you never saw me?
I was billed as Della Robia,
The Bombshell of Song.
I never went to the theater
when I was a young man.
- And now, Mr. Hodges,
I'd like to hear your story.
- It's a very silly story.
In fact, when I look back on it,
it seems absolutely incredible.
Here you are.
Don't go away.
I'll be back in just a minute.
Going to the Chamber of Commerce
was something I hadn't counted on.
- [Doorbell Buzzes]
- The beer!
- Mr. McKinley!
- I thought I'd find you here.
- Yes, Louis.
- Okay, all right, I love you. Do you hear?
- Now, come on home.
- I beg your pardon.
You keep out of this. This is between me
and my wife. Who are you, anyway?
Harold P. Cleveland, president of...
I've heard all the Cleveland I wanna hear.
It's all right if I never hear that name again.
Now, come on home, will ya?
I apologize for whatever I did.
- I said I apologize!
- All right, Louis. Only don't shout so.
- I'm not shouting!
I just said I apologize!
- Yes, dear, I heard you.
- "Dear"? D-Did you call me "dear"?
- Yes, dear.
We'll, I'll be... [Chuckles]
Hodges, you're fired!
- Grandpa?
- [Chuckles] I beg your pardon.
[Door Closes]
- Who the devil's car is that?
- Harold P. Cleveland's, president
of Consolidated Motors.
- Harold P. Whose?
- The man you yelled at inside, dear.
- And that is the whole story.
- And quite a story it is.
Pardon me for suggesting it, but I just
happen to have this album laying around.
Only this afternoon I said to myself,
"Della, if the right part..."
Della, there's no time for that now,
after what's just happened.
- After what?
- Dad's been fired, that's what. Fired!
Fired? What, again?
It's all right, Della.
I knew all the time it wouldn't work.
Fired. And after all the trouble
we've gone through.
- Mother, please.
- Okay.
But it's a fine time to tell us, right in front
of the president of Consolidated Motors.
If you've really been fired,
what are you going to do?
I know one thing I won't do, and that's
sit in a park and feed the pigeons.
How would you like
to work with me in New York?
There's a little office next to mine.
We could have it redecorated.
- Oh, Grandpa!
- For goodness' sake, imagine! New York!
- Maybe you could find a little apartment.
- I'm sorry. I couldn't do that.
You know the hackneyed phrase: "New York
may be all right for a visit, but..."
- Maybe you could live in Brooklyn.
- No, Della, not even Brooklyn.
- If it's a question of money...
- No, thank you.
- I make all the money I need right here.
- All the money you need?
You just lost your job, and with the price
of soup bones goin' up...
- I'm sorry, Della.
- You'd have lots of leisure.
I'd only want you around
for advice in public relations matters.
Maybe we could go to
a ball game together occasionally.
Thank you, Mr. Cleveland, but no.
This is my home.
My family's here. We're happy.
That is, as happy as people need to be.
I have my health, I eat what I like,
I drink my coffee without saccharin...
I don't have to make speeches,
unless I want to...
go to board meetings, worry about
stockholders, unions, income taxes.
Come to think of it, why don't
you move out here? You're
young enough to get a good job.
Now, please, Mr. Hodges,
don't tempt me.
Well, I must be running along.
- Good night, everybody.
- Good night, sir.
- Well, don't look at me. He's your father.
- [Door Opens]
I'm sorry you won't come with me,
but I see your point.
Thank you.
As to your job at Acme Printing,
I wouldn't worry about that.
You heard Mr. McKinley fire me.
Mr. McKinley apparently has high blood
pressure. I'll send him a note tomorrow.
No, I'll make it a directive that you're
to have your job as long as you want it.
Well, thank you.
You've been very understanding.
If there's ever anything I can do for you...
If you should ever get an idea
for another good speech...
It would be a pleasure,
Mr. Cleveland, a pleasure indeed.
You're a great man, Mr. Hodges,
a truly great man.
Thank you, Mr. Cleveland.
So are you.
- Good night.
- Good night.
## [Humming]