Rhapsody in Blue (1945) Movie Script

Jack, can I trade this in for a nickel?
Sorry, Georgie,
but I can't use it.
Must I hear that number
every day?
Ira, do you got
a nickel?
What's that
- Another Deadwood Dick?
It ain't much good. Say, we better
get back and do our homework.
Race you home.
Hey, wait a minute!
A little more
to the left.
Steady now, boys.
How's it coming
up there, Jerry?
Who's getting
a piano?
It's the Gershwins.
We don't have one.
Who wants a secondhanded piano?
Come on inside.
What's going on?
Search me.
Gee, a piano.
Some lucky guy.
Hey, that's
our window!
No. There must be
some mistake.
Let's go see.
Now, George, if it's not for
us, don't be disappointed.
One piano comes
in the house,
And right away the whole place
is turned upside down on its head.
The house needs music.
I've made up my mind.
Do you play the piano?
Do I?
If your married sister
can have one, why can't we?
So if she has a headache,
I must have one, too.
Anyhow, a piano
in the house
Is a sign
of culture.
Ira, look out!
How many times
- Look out! Look out!
Oh, always coming in
With skates
on the carpet. Look.
Hey, Mom, does the piano
belong to us?
Mm-hmm, so long as we can pay
the installments.
Positively we will pay
the installments,
And Ira will take
Oh, Momma,
have a heart.
You heard
what I said.
Gee, do I have to
take them?
You're the oldest.
There, now.
even a lesson.
1, 2, 3, 4.
1, 2, 3, 4.
1, 2, 3, 4.
1, 2, 3, 4.
Don't try to improve upon
the classics, Mr. Gershwin.
Morris, I never saw
such children.
Always wearing out
the cuffs.
And George
- He tears off the buttons.
Look at it.
At their age, they've got
their own worries.
What are you
fixing now?
I'm not fixing.
I'm ruining.
Morris, tell George
to go downstairs
And help out
with the bakery.
playing music.
I'll go, Mom,
as soon as I'm through.
If he wants to play, Momma, let him.
You, Ira
- Always with a book under your nose.
Rose, when they're outside,
you want them inside,
So when they're inside,
leave them alone.
bothering them?
Ah, such a mechanism.
It's too involved.
Can I come in?
You're in already. What is it
- A telephone call?
No. Georgie.
Chico Marx tells me you
should give me a nickel.
What for?
I got a message.
What kind
of a message?
A message always costs.
Mr. Gershwin.
Such a popular
Every day
a telephone call.
Well, what do you know?
At last I got the job-
Relief pianist
in a theater.
Who do you
Chico Marx.
In the whole
Sonny, I don't
want you to work
In no cheap
vaudeville show.
It's a good job, Mom.
A fella has to start
somewhere, Momma.
What a break,
They've got some pretty good acts
over there. Here's one of the songs.
Don't pay any attention to
me, son. I just work here.
Excuse me.
You're not a piano
player. You're a juggler.
Come on, give me that tempo, will you?
I don't know what I'd do without
him down there, but I'd rather!
Stop it. Stop it!
Is that what you learn
in the vaudeville job?
No. I quit that job, but
I'll get another one soon,
And it will pay me more
than 15 bucks a week.
15 or 50 or 500-
Does that make up
For ruining your technique
when you have it in you
To become a concert pianist? Does it?
No, but,
professor Franck,
- I don't want to be just a concert pianist.
a concert pianist.
Oh, I didn't mean it
that way, only...
Well, I want to make the
piano a steppingstone.
A steppingstone
- And where will you step to, Mr. Gershwin?
To-to composition.
So for whom
will you compose-
For ragtime dancers
or for musicians?
I don't know.
Maybe for both.
Seems like everything I
hear sticks in my head.
I want to make
those sounds
Come down through my
fingers and into the keys.
Go on, go on.
You don't have to
say anything.
I- I know
it isn't any good.
Did I say it wasn't
any good?
Professor Franck, you
mean that you really-
Ah, ah, ah. One swallow
does not a summer make...
But it is different,
shall I say?
Perhaps it was
music half-formed.
Now, then,
play that Chopin,
But without ragging it!
That the eyes
of love alone will see
But the smiles that fill
my life with sunshine
Are the smiles
That you gave to me
They don't like
this stuff.
Oh, what's the diff?
We got to make them like
it, the chowderheads.
Anyway, it's time
to go home.
Ah, they need something
different. So do we.
Oh, a reformer!
Let's go.
You can address it to Remick
and company. Thank you.
From Honolulu
Come and let me rock you
in my cradle of love
And we'll cuddle
all the while
Oh, I want
to love...
No, pick it up,
pick it up.
No, no. It's no-no pep. That's no good.
Did I say
it was good?
I've played about everything we've got.
Well, sorry. I've got to
have something with snap.
Say, wait a minute.
How's this?
Hey, that's pretty good! Who wrote it?
I did.
You did? Well!
I'll take a copy.
Wait a minute.
It isn't published yet.
Say, that's an idea.
Mr. Kast, please.
Yes, Gershwin.
Oh, so he don't like
any of our numbers.
No, but I played him a song,
and he likes it. It's my own.
Oh, so he likes
something you wrote?
Listen, Pinkers,
you're being paid
To play Remick numbers,
not your own. Do you mind?
No, we don't want
to publish it!
He doesn't want
to publish it.
Well, that's
his hard luck.
Tell him he hasn't got
anything else I want,
But if your song ever gets
published, you let me know.
Thanks very much.
Listen, George, don't
let Kast get you down.
He doesn't know the
first thing about music.
You're telling me.
I heard that number you
were playing. It's all right.
Did you really
like it, Bill?
It has the smell
of originality.
Heaven knows that's
rare on these premises.
But what am I
going to do?
I've written 5 songs, and
not one of them published.
How old
are you, George?
Old enough.
Don't be
in too great a hurry
To set the world
fizz yourself out
Like acetylase
Well, I guess I'm just
wasting the firm's time.
I haven't even-
Pardon me. Is this the place
where you get free music?
Well, it's free,
but is it music?
What? Oh, I guess
I'm in the wrong place.
No, wait a minute.
I'm sorry.
I was just being
funny. Come in.
Do you give away
music here?
Why, any amount of it to professionals.
You're a professional, of course.
Well, I-I'm
going to be.
I have an audition
this afternoon.
You don't say.
But I'm so nervous
I don't know what to do.
Well, I know
just how you feel.
I was that way
before my first concert.
Are you
a concert musician?
How long did it take you
to get over being nervous?
When was your
first concert?
About two years
from now, I hope.
No, I'm just a song-plugger
here at Remick's.
Pick out something you like,
and I'll play it for you.
Oh, here's one
I know.
This one.
What, again?
Do you know it?
I knew it before
it was written.
There are smiles
that make us happy
There are smiles
that make us blue
There are smiles that
steal away the teardrops
As the sunbeams
steal away the dew
Wait a minute. This song isn't for you.
You've got a voice.
You're wonderful. I never
sang like that before.
I've got ideas
that are different.
When I once
get started,
Nothing will ever
stop me.
That sounds a little
stuck-up, doesn't it?
No. I don't think so. I think
you really are different.
Here. Here,
let's try this song.
It's something
I wrote.
Your own?
How I love you,
how I love you
Let's try it
in that tempo.
I'll try.
How I love you,
how I love you
No, no, no, no, no, no. More like this.
How I love you,
how I love you
My dear old
You see?
Oh, I see
what you mean.
Ok, let's try it
How I love you,
how I love you
My dear old
That's it.
I'd give
the world to be
Among the folks
in D-I-X-I-E.
Even now my mammy's
Waiting for me,
praying for me
Down by the Swanee
The folks up north
will see me no more
When I go-
You can go. Didn't I tell
you to lay off your own songs?
But, Mr. Kast-
Don't give me any excuses. I've had
just about enough of you, Gershwin.
And I'm tired of playing the
same old songs day in and day out.
Oh, you are?!
From now on, you won't have
to play them. You're fired!
Get out, and don't let me find
you around here when I get back.
A lot he knows
about music.
Oh, I'm sorry. I'm
afraid it was my fault.
It was nothing.
It was bound to come.
He doesn't appreciate me
or my music, either.
Now you're
out of a job.
Oh, don't worry
about me.
I come from a family that's
moved 16 times in 10 years.
I'm used to changes.
Anyway, I'm sorry,
and I loved your song.
Well, bye.
Uh, good-Bye,
Miss, uh...
Oh, my name is
Julie Adams,
And I live
at the Studio Art Club.
My name is George Gershwin,
and I live in the Bronx.
this is the last day.
Thank you.
Well, good-bye.
Wait a minute!
Here. It's
on the house.
Why, thank you,
Mr. Gershwin.
That's all right.
Well, good-bye.
Miss Adams.
Mr. Kast, please.
didn't I tell you I-
Mr. Kast, I thought you'd
like to hear it just once more.
How I love you,
how I love you
Da da da, da da
Now, Morris, what kind
of a career is music?
For pleasure, yes.
For business, no.
Such a habit
- Always ripping seams.
It happens,
it happens.
What are you inventing
so much?
Who's inventing?
I'm fixing.
Momma, don't discourage
George right now.
For weeks, he's been
pounding the pavements.
He's made some
good contacts.
Listen, Rose, every man
can't be Andrew Carnegie.
the world needs, too.
Whose idea was
the piano?
But George will need
to make a living.
Give him time. When
he learns music better,
He'll get good jobs.
Such a mechanism.
Professor Franck says he's
almost ready to study in Europe.
Who's going to send him to
Europe-you, Ira? Your father, maybe?
Now, Morris,
you listen to me.
Talk to George. Tell him he should
be learning a dependable business.
Look, Ira. At last
I've got it down in ink.
Shh. George, I think your
father wants to talk to you.
What's up?
What is it, Poppa?
Uh, Georgie,
sit down, sit down.
Such a mechanism.
It's all mixed up.
What's the matter?
Uh, I don't just know
how to say it.
About getting
a job.
Well, something like that.
You see, Georgie,
Your mother thinks
you ought to have
Some kind of regular work-that
is, besides your music.
But, Poppa, if he quits his music now,
He might never get
back to it.
Is that so bad?
Well, don't you see?
But music means more than
anything else in the world, Poppa.
That's all I was
waiting to hear.
Just wait till they hear
this tune.
I'll take it
to Harms the publisher.
Irving Caesar wrote
the words.
Not so loud.
With all due respect.
If business
gets better,
Maybe we can pay George's way to Europe.
I wouldn't mention that
to your mother right now.
Oh, this one they'll print.
Just wait and see.
Oh, what a beautiful
Look, Poppa.
How neat you write it,
Such black ink.
Such a fine,
ambitious boy.
And Ira, too.
And tell Max I've only got 10
more minutes, but I can stretch it.
I'll remind Mr. Dreyfus
that you're here.
That's what I meant.
You're fresh.
you're not.
How long have you known
Mr. Dreyfus? What's he like?
Never met him
in my life.
But you just called him
by his first name.
It's better
than swearing.
In this town, if you don't call a man
By his first name, he
doesn't publish your music.
They don't
publish mine anyway,
But it's still
a good theory.
Bum bum bump
Diminished ninth.
If I had
your talent,
I'd be a pretty
obnoxious fella.
What do you
call yourself?
George Gershwin.
It's my real name.
Mine's Oscar Levant.
I'm thinking
of changing it.
Do you mind?
Mr. Dreyfus
will see you now.
It's about time.
I knew he'd come my way.
Not you.
Mr. Gershwin.
Thanks for your
advice, Levant.
Hey, George! Tell Max
I saw you first.
I will.
Are you still here?
How would you like to
sponsor me through college?
You loathe me,
don't you?
Mr. Dreyfus, sir, may I
please make a correction?
It's more like this.
May I?
Da da da da,
da da da da
Da da da da,
da da da da, doo
Yeah, it has
A diminished
ninth, too.
Little unusual for
popular music, isn't it?
Oh, I guess it is,
Mr. Dreyfus,
But that's the way
I hear it in my mind.
Oh, you hear it in your mind, do you?
Yes, sir. We got to have
something different.
different, eh?
Huh. Have a cigar?
No, thanks.
I don't smoke yet.
It might hurt
my wind.
Huh? Oh, well, you don't
know what you're missing,
Especially if you're
going to be a musician.
Now, watch.
There's your
whole note.
Those are
half notes.
Now, if you could learn
to do that, Mr. Gershwin,
You could compose
without a pencil.
You're making fun
of me.
Oh, heaven forbid. I'm just
trying to get acquainted.
Well-well, how do you
like my music?
Well, how do you
like it?
Yes, you.
But I wrote it.
Of course I like it!
Don't say "of course." I've
written plenty I don't like at all.
What about other music?
Who tickles
your palate most?
What kind of music?
Oh, Bach, Mozart,
Beethoven, Tchaikovksy,
Berlin, Jerry Kern-
I like them all, Mr.
Dreyfus, especially Kern.
Kern, eh?
You know, I think we're going to
get on very well, Mr. Gershwin.
How would you like
a two-year contract-
Say, at, uh,
$30 a week?
Are you joking?
Well, make it 35.
You mean you'd pay me
to write my own songs?
Well, that's all it's-
Why not? Let's start
with this one.
Play it for me,
young man.
Yes, sir.
I'd be glad to.
Winter Garden-
Say, wait a minute.
What is this?
Yeah, I know
it's Max Dreyfus,
But who is that guy
plunking the piano?
Never heard of him.
That ain't
a bad ditty.
Who wrote it?
Wait a minute.
Max, it's me-
Who wrote it?
I did.
Mr. Jolson!
You don't think it's too far
off the beaten path, do you, al?
Max, look, send that song
over to me,
And I guarantee I'll make them
beat a path to it a mile long.
Thanks, Al.
So long, kid.
Ready, Mr. Jolson.
Why, Mr. Gershwin! Oh, I'm Julie
- Julie Adams.
Remember at Remick's
when you lost your job?
Oh, yes. I see you're
working at last.
In the chorus, but I'm
understudying a part.
You'll get parts if I
have to write them for you.
I knew
it was your song.
Good luck.
Well, George, you'll know in a minute.
I been away from you
a long time
I never thought
I'd miss you so
Somehow I feel
your love is real
Near you
I wanna be
The birds are singing,
it is songtime
The banjo's strumming
soft and low
I know that you yearn
for me, too
you're calling me
How I love you,
how I love you
My dear old Swanee
I'd give the world
to be
Among the folks
in D-I-X-I-E
Even now
my mammy's
Waiting for me,
praying for me
Down by the Swanee
The folks up north
won't see me no more
When I get
to that Swanee shore
I love
the old folks at home
Uh-huh, huh
How I love you,
how I love you
My dear old Swanee
I'd give the world
to be
Among the folks
in D-I-X-I-E
Even now
my mammy's
Waiting for me,
praying for me
Down by the swanee
The folks up north
won't see me no more
When I get
to that Swanee shore
You should be
happy, Rose.
I am happy.
That was great, Al.
Thanks. Listen, kid,
write more songs like that,
And your name will be up
in electric lights.
Thanks, Al. Now I'll do
some still better than that.
The folks up north
won't see me no more
When I get
to that Swanee shore
And on the other side
There's another
Gershwin tune.
Hits. Hits. All I hear
from you lately is hits.
You are becoming just a
merchant, Mr. Gershwin.
The public
likes my stuff.
Evidently. You have new
clothes, hand-painted cravat.
But is your work the best?
As good as you can do?
Of course not, yet.
Or are you just
making a fortune?
What's wrong with a fortune
if it helps me get on?
Come here, my boy.
This is Franz Schubert.
He was a songwriter, too.
He died young,
at 32.
For years, he wore the
same old faded necktie.
But in the land
that nurtured him,
He was a voice that
will never be silenced.
Here, Richard Wagner.
At rehearsals
of his great opera Rienzi,
Richard Wagner
hid in the wings
While the singers
ate their luncheon.
He didn't
have a lunch-
Just dreams of the music of the future.
He never asked himself,
"is this a hit?"
He said, "this is the
way it must be done."
In time, I'll write
the way I feel.
But you see, with the
money I'm making now,
I'll have my chance
to do the things I want-
The things you want.
And you couldn't
go to Europe now?
Right now...
Right now, I've got the
chance to write the music
For an entire
new show,
From beginning
to end.
And then what, George?
Back to your hits?
You can trust me,
professor Franck.
I know
what you mean.
Eh? You see that?
That wasn't a hit
at first.
It is a manuscript
of Johannes Brahms.
You knew him?
Yes. He gave it
to me in Vienna.
Once, I hoped to reach his greatness,
But one pupil like you makes up
for a lifetime of disappointments.
Professor Franck...
You overestimate
my future.
Oh, I have such hopes for you, my boy.
a growing country,
A mixture
of things very old
With more
that is new.
Your nature has the
same contradictions-
The lamb
and the wolf,
Ideals and material
If you can make them
both serve,
George, you can give America her voice.
Well, what are we
waiting for?
Who is bidding?
Such a hand. Morris,
what a dealer you are.
I trade you
Don't do me
any favors.
You know, Morris,
it's very high-class.
The furniture?
All Grand Rapids.
Business must be good
at a stationery store.
It couldn't be worse,
Mr. Katzman.
I'm thinking of getting
myself a Turkish bath.
Oh, not for pleasure.
For business.
Now there's
a gold mine for you.
It couldn't be
George's music
That pays for such a high-tone
apartment and all these nice things?
And why not,
Mr. Million?
His songs are selling
like hot corns,
And always new ones
coming. Listen.
You hear that? George is
in the act of composition.
A song is being born.
Excuse me.
That help you,
Thanks, Pop.
Don't mention it.
It's all in the family.
Boys, that song is for
a new singer he found.
Some tea, somebody?
No, thanks.
Ah, such
a fine girl.
Who is she?
Her name is
Julie Adams.
George is writing
the music for a show?
Yeah. Musical show.
What's it called?
Half Past Eight.
Why Half
Past Eight?
Because the curtain goes up
a quarter to 9:00.
You should care for me
Oh, it's wonderful
It's marvelous
That you should care for me
Only me
Oh, wonderful
You were swell,
Julie. Swell.
If anything could
save us, you could.
Do you really think
I'm improving, George?
You were wonderful.
Music is all right, but the
show will never be a hit.
Through, ain't you?
Through, bud? Ain't no
floor show here, you know.
Not even a mention
of the music.
When they don't like a show, they
don't look for anything good in it.
Why take it to heart?
It's my nature to take things to heart.
Drink your coffee, George,
before it gets cold.
After all, I was in the show,
and I don't take it personally.
You were the only
good thing in the show.
Do you mean that,
Of course I mean it.
I guess I'd come a lot farther
than Hartford to hear you say that.
Who am I?
You taught me how
to put over a song.
You've given me
my first real part.
What if this show is a flop?
We'll do others.
I haven't got time
for flops.
No time for flops.
George, what on earth are
you in such a rush about?
I want to learn everything about music.
I've got to have
time to study,
And look at me.
6 months wasted
on a flop.
You poor kid.
Oh, no, I don't
mean it that way.
Not because you had a little
setback. That isn't important.
But because you
drive yourself so hard.
George, are you going to do
that all the rest of your life?
Until I prove
what I can do.
What's the matter,
Oh, yes, there is.
Well, I just get a little
frightened when you talk like that.
I'm afraid you'll
burn yourself out.
Don't worry
about me.
See that? The longest
life line you ever saw.
Mr. Gershwin, have
you got somebody
Who can beat me
with a switch?
I'm sorry. We'll have
more help next week.
Oh, excuse me.
But my doctor told me for my
rheumatism, I got to perspire.
Next week.
And come early.
Sweet, sweet,
Hello? Hello, Saul.
No. Poppa gave up
the stationery store.
It's a Turkish bath now.
Oh, business is pretty good ever
since George brings his friends in.
Yeah, ok.
I'll tell Pop.
Hmm hmm hmm hmm
Oh, hello, Ira.
Hi, George. Mr. Dreyfus
and a friend of his
Are in
the steam room.
They should be
about cooked.
Say, what
are you doing?
Oh, just
sort of studying
The way words and music fit together.
You mean, you're
writing something.
Oh, just some jingles. I'll tell
you if they're ever any good.
You mean you
write lyrics!
Why, Ira,
that's swell.
That's what I'd like to do, sometime.
I'm awfully glad, Ira.
Oh, Mr. Dreyfus? Hello.
Where are you?
Here, up
in cloud 9.
I can't
see you.
George, meet George.
Hiya, George.
Hello, George.
His last name is white.
I like some of your songs.
That's what brought me here.
Otherwise, I never
take a bath.
They're far from
my best stuff yet.
You know, that's what I like
about Gershwin.
He's so modest.
What was I
You were saying that you're
good and getting better.
Well, I am.
Here's a chance to prove
how good you are.
Tell him, George.
I'm doing a new show. I'm
going to call it The Scandals.
I intend to do a new edition every year.
He wants you
to do the music.
Thanks, but... to be
perfectly frank, Mr. White,
Before I take the job, I want to
be sure the show's got a chance.
You see, I can't afford to
waste 6 months on another flop.
I haven't the time.
I mean, I've got to
get on with my career.
He's almost 21, and he hasn't
played Carnegie Hall yet.
This is going to be the
swellest show the town ever saw-
The most gorgeous scenery and the
most beautiful girls ever born.
It'll have the best
of everything.
You'll have a chance
to spread yourself,
Top anything
you've ever done.
George, here's
your opportunity.
The music's up to you.
Get your copies here!
Here you are, folks.
Hit of the show.
Somebody loves me,
Sung by Julie Adams
And Tom Patricola.
Get your copies here, folks.
Somebody loves me
I wonder who
I wonder who she can be
loves me
I wish I knew
Who can she be?
Worries me
For every girl
who passes me
I shout
Yeah, she
was meant to be
Your lovin' baby
Somebody loves me
I wonder who
Maybe it's you
Somebody loves me
I wonder who
Maybe it's you
41/2 minutes. A very
important piece.
I don't care what
anybody thinks.
I liked your songs,
Everybody liked them,
didn't they, buddy?
When they sell a million copies,
then I'll know they like them.
What if they
only sell 900,000?
You sound like a big executive,
De Sylva.
Oh, Max.
Excuse me.
Max, I want to thank you. You
started the ball rolling for me.
You've hit your stride,
my boy. Now stick to it.
You can do a lot
for musical comedy.
And it can do
a lot for you, too.
I'll build a stairway
to paradise
With a new step every day
I'm going to get there
at any price
Stand aside,
I'm on my way
I'm just a lonesome
babe in the wood
So, lady, be good to me
What a girl.
Don't tell me that kiss is far
from your best work, Mr. Gershwin.
I've just had
a brand-new idea.
A blues song
for next year...
All right,
George. I'll tell them.
Sure, I agree with you.
Harlem. Dame
shoots a guy.
That's not
for The Scandals.
All right. Good-bye.
Well, boys, White says the number's out.
But why?
It's dramatic.
You don't go for that
stuff, do you, Paul?
You're still
in your right mind?
I don't know. I may be kind of batty,
but this looks mighty good to me.
Why, it's as blue
as blue Monday.
Hey, that's
a good title.
Not bad.
Blue Monday Blues.
Let's go down on the stage
and run it through.
I'm with you, boss.
Let's hear it
with the orchestra.
I must admit, although
I don't like Sunday
I have a fit when
I go through blue Monday
Monday's the one day
that my dice lose
They just refuse
That's when my cares
are always bigger
His cares
are always bigger
I've got those
blue Monday blues
Good evening, Vi.
Good evening, all.
Hi, Vi. Hi, Vi.
Has one of you
seen Joe, my Joe?
For I have a date
with him here
It couldn't be
that I have missed him
I am a little early
for him
Has one of you
seen Joe?
My lovin' man
My Joe
That's when a gal
will pull a trigger
A gal will
pull a trigger
I've got those
blue Monday blues
I love but you,
my Joe, my Joe
I don't want a thing, dear, but you
But after all,
I'm only human
And I'm a mighty
jealous woman
Still, just as long
as you're true
I'll live
for no one
But you
"Hurry home, Joe.
Mother has died. Sis."
Gershwin must have
lost his mind.
It's great
stuff, George.
Don't worry
about it.
I'm gonna see
my mother
Mother mine
Lord, how I've
missed my mother
Mother mine
Maybe I'm a very
worthless fellow
But my weary heart
Will cease to pine
When in her arms,
I'll whisper
I am home again,
Mother mine
Mike, you can
let the boys know
If there's any change
in the rehearsal call.
Ok, Paul.
Good night.
Good night, boys.
Why can't we at least wait until you
hear what the critics have to say?
Gives me
the creeps.
George, it's great, but it doesn't
belong in this kind of a show.
The blues are out.
That's final.
Oh, Professor Franck.
How did you like
the blues number?
I'm so anxious to hear
what you have to say.
That one number
was worth more
Than all the rest of
the show put together.
It was crude, yes,
But it was original
and honest.
Well, if you liked it,
I'm satisfied.
But the audience didn't
entirely understand it.
Paul, I'm worried
about George.
This'll hit him
pretty hard.
The number was
really wonderful.
All we've got to do is get
the public blues-conscious.
He's sold on the blues. He
won't give them up for anybody.
He knows what
he wants, Paul.
He'll go on.
We'll go on.
The blues will go on.
Oh, George? George?
Not you, crapehanger.
I mean the music man.
Oh, paul, I want you
to meet my teacher.
Professor Franck,
Paul Whiteman.
You must be very proud
of your young pupil.
He's just crawling
with talent.
Yeah. Ha! Crawling.
Do you know what
I think I'll do?
What, Paul? Go back
to the Palais Royal?
No. I think I'm going to give a jazz
concert smack-dab in Aeolian Hall.
I'm going to make
a lady out of jazz.
The Blue Monday Blues
in Aeolian Hall?
Better than that. George, I want
you to write a serious concert piece
Based on the blues.
A serious piece
that's blue, too?
Blue themes
and jazz rhythms?
Of course.
You'll lose your shirt, Whiteman.
Those highbrows will laugh
you right out of Aeolian Hall.
A Rhapsody in Blue.
And you talk about not wasting
time. You're throwing it away.
Professor Franck, I'm giving a little
party for George and a few friends
Tonight at a speakeasy.
Will you join us?
A place where you
can get real beer.
Real beer?
You invite me
to break the law?
Well, perhaps tonight,
we should celebrate.
We break the law.
Practically broke.
Good night,
Let's drink a toast
to Max Dreyfus, our host,
Discoverer and friend of those
who compose our best musical shows.
Here goes.
It rhymes.
Ira, you're a poet. The poet
laureate of Tony's Spaghetti.
Another genius
in the family.
You Gershwins ought
to form a union.
Ira's good. He's going to write
the lyrics for my next show.
Next show? What
next show, George?
I suppose, Professor Franck, you've
decided he's not to write any more shows.
I do not decide
such things.
But that's what you want. You'd
like him to throw away his success
And starve in a
Greenwich Village garret.
The rents are pretty
high down there.
A man has to do what he feels. You see-
George, the old men
have the floor.
Stop buzzing in his ear, will you?
George has started a career
you find only in storybooks.
What have you to offer
in its place?
Poverty? Privation?
And I suppose after 20 years,
if he should go to Europe,
He might write a sonata
for harp and flute.
Then this charge
is a fair one.
What do you
want of me?
I want you to talk
sense to him.
You have
an influence.
Yeah, but you have
a contract.
George is an American. He
writes of America for America.
That's the way
it should be.
And do you think America
is one big business deal?
Why shouldn't George
plant seeds for the future?
He shouldn't cut down trees for lumber.
Because this boy
has a gift,
He could be a great
voice in his country.
He's from
the people.
He will write American music, yes.
But great
American music,
Not just little tunes that
jingle like coins in your pocket.
Tell me, what would be wrong if
the boy should be a Victor Herbert?
Nothing. It's wonderful
to be a Victor Herbert.
Well, then...
Ahh. But if you
have the talent
To be a Schubert or a
Brahms or a Beethoven-
Wherever I go, there's always a fight.
I wonder why.
Oh, you mustn't get excited, you two.
This is something George will
have to decide for himself.
Julie, darling, if George listens
to the voice within himself,
I'm not afraid
for what will happen.
You will excuse me,
I am an old man, and
it is past my bedtime.
Good night.
Good night. Good night.
Good night,
Yes, sir?
What's the rap?
Mr. Dreyfus, how do you
spell your name,
With one "s" or two?
Why did I ever get
myself mixed up with this?
There goes Walter Damrosch. Yeah.
That's Rachmaninoff
getting out of the cab.
Jascha Heifetz.
Hello, Jascha.
He's a nice
That's Otto Kahn.
Stop, Oscar. I don't
want to hear any more.
What are you
so nervous about?
They're all
friends of mine.
Come on.
Well, I'm next.
Not like The Scandals,
eh, George?
Brr. Boys, what's the
temperature outside?
Exactly zero.
6 to an even that audience
is 10 degrees colder.
I'm not
saying a word.
Well, George,
it's up to you.
What are you
so nervous about?
You'd better be good.
This means a lot to me.
Shall we go?
Come on, Oscar.
Let's go out front.
Why don't you
wish me luck?
14 minutes and 5...
A very important piece.
If only Professor Franck
had been there.
He tried to come, George.
He just wasn't up to it.
What's taking Ira so
long with those reviews?
He's slower than
a freight train.
He is not.
What do you know
about Ira?
Well, I think I know
him as well as you do.
I'm his brother.
I'm engaged to him.
You seem to be the slow one, George.
We're getting married
next month. Aren't we, Ira?
Uh-huh. The reviews
are wonderful!
Yes. He never
told me a word.
What's this about you
and lee getting married?
We're very fond
of each other.
Powerful words,
Listen to this.
It's a big step, Lee,
an enormous step.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not
against it. It's just that-
"The Rhapsody in Blue
is a very stimulating piece"...
There's always been
the 4 of us-
Poppa, Momma,
Ira, and me...
"Daring harmony
and dynamic composition".
What's that?
The Times,
they like it.
"In fact, Mr. Gershwin
may be leading the way
"To a new and significant form of musical
expression that is typically American,
Combining the elements
of jazz with-"
Mr. Gillman says, "shows
daring and ingenuity,
The trail of
an adventurous spirit."
Listen to this!
Damrosch wants you to write
a concerto for full orchestra!
Walter Damrosch? Of
the New York Symphony?
George, don't let him
turn your head.
A concerto?
What do I know
about concertos?
You see, Max,
I'm not equipped.
There's too much
I don't understand.
I'm going to pass up
The Scandals, Max.
Ira, please
see Julie home.
Sure, George.
I've got to see
Professor Franck
And tell him
I'm going abroad.
I think it's wonderful,
you two, just wonderful.
Promise me
Don't you ever
be a genius.
Hello, Nielson.
Oh, Mr. Gershwin.
He won't answer.
Is he asleep?
He's dead.
What did you say?
It happened
2 or 3 hours ago.
They sent
for the doctor...
And when he came...
It was too late.
one minute, please.
He told me to give you
this manuscript of Brahms'.
He said you would
like to have it.
Thank you.
Oh, Mr. Gershwin, he was so fond of you.
It's a fascinating song.
Who wrote it?
A countryman
of yours.
Just meant for two
From which I'll never roam
Who would? Would you?
And so,
all else above
I'm waiting for
the man
I love
Messieurs et mesdames,
Ce n'est pas moi qui merite
vos applaudissements.
C'est le compositeur
qui est ici ce soir-
Monsieur George Gershwin.
Welcome to Paris,
Mr. Gershwin.
And now,
in your honor...
Clap-a yo' hands
Slap-a yo' thighs
Fascinating rhythm,
you got me on the go
Fascinating rhythm,
I'm all a-quiver
Fascinating rhythm,
the neighbors wanna know
Fascinating rhythm,
why I'm a-shiver
Oh, how I long to be
the gal I used to be
Fascinating rhythm
Who did you say
it was?
You mean to say you've never
heard of George Gershwin?
Why, his music's all
the rage just now.
His songs, his Rhapsody,
What we call the "hot jazz."
You're getting out of touch, Christine.
I really must go back
to America sometime.
Why not ask Gershwin
to join us?
Wherever he goes,
America goes with him.
It'll save you an
expensive trip, darling.
Excuse me,
Let me introduce
Mr. Gershwin.
How do you do?
Mrs. Gilbert.
How do you do?
Good evening.
Oh, I don't mind him
You'll never find him
Hanging around my door
I've got rhythm
I've got music
I've got my man
Who could ask
for anything more?
How is it, Mr. Gerswhin,
that you are so young?
After the dozens of songs
that you have written
And your rhapsody, they
expect you to be at least 40,
With a mustache,
very respectable,
by a large retinue.
Well, I'm afraid
I don't live up.
Doolee doodlee doo
There's no land
so grand as my land
From California
to Manhattan Isle
Like my music?
Very much, what
I've heard of it.
I wrote this in 1922. You
ought to know my later stuff.
How is it you don't?
Perhaps I've been
in Europe too long.
Oh, is your husband
in Paris?
Excuse me.
They called you
Mrs. Gilbert.
I divorced Gilbert before
you wrote this tune-In 1921.
You see, I'm slightly
older than you are.
That's ideal.
I'll say "I love you"
Make me lose
those Yankee doodle blues
Um doo-doodle
Yankee doodle
That melody...
You dance very well.
Let's dance again tomorrow
afternoon, if you're not busy.
I'm sorry. I'm going to
see a show-an opening.
Do they open in the
afternoon in this town?
Why, certainly.
Are you
going alone?
No. I'm going
with some friends.
Oh. Where is this show?
At the Club Chouette.
It isn't sold out,
I hope.
Oh, almost
nothing's sold.
I'll see you there.
You won't be hard
to find in any crowd.
Madame de Breteuil.
Well, how do you do?
How are you?
Is there a theater
around here somewhere?
No, Monsieur,
there's no theater.
There must
be some mistake.
Christine-that is, Mrs.
Gilbert-said something about a show.
Oh, an exhibit.
There it is.
How silly of me.
I think his portrait
of William G.
Is an excellent representation
of cubistic form.
Of course, it's
purely experimental.
Oh, there she is.
Oui, Madame Gilbert, but
may I show you number 12?
Uh, pardon.
William G.?
Christine, do I show
any progress?
I like
the portrait best.
Poor old William.
You have caught
his sense of humor.
Yes. He was a most
agreeable model.
Carl, you know I-
Why, Mr. Gershwin,
you're here.
Christine, my dear,
where are your paintings,
Your beautiful
I saw them here
only last week.
In the back room
with their faces to the wall.
I should never have let Pierre
hang them. I'm not ready yet.
a modest American!
You didn't tell me
you were a painter.
You didn't ask me.
Monsieur Ravel,
Monsieur Gershwin.
Won't you join us,
Your Bolero.
Monsieur Ravel, how much
I'd like to study with you.
If you study with me, you will
only write second-rate Ravel
Instead of
first-rate Gershwin.
Pardon. There's so much I'd like
to say to this brilliant American.
You won't object if I just sit
quietly and watch the leaves?
Tell me, how did you get the
inspiration for your rhythm?
Thank you.
You're not peeved
about last night?
Honestly, I forgot
all about you.
I assure you, I didn't mind at all.
I wanted you
to meet Ravel.
More particularly, I
wanted Ravel to meet you.
You take me for some
kind of curiosity.
That's stimulating,
Your interest in me is
the same, you know.
Whatever I do or say,
you think is exotic.
I've never thought
of myself as exotic.
Takes a long time
to know you, Christine.
We met two weeks ago.
I've learned a lot
since then,
But not about you.
Don't try, George.
Let me help you
while I can.
Thank you.
I've got to tell you,
When something's inside me,
it has to come out.
Not one word
about love.
We can talk about painting,
coffee, history, society,
Times Square, the Champs
Elysees, whatever you like,
But not love.
You don't feel
anything at all?
I'm not worried yet
about what I feel.
It's you who must learn
to keep your feelings,
As you loosely call them, in control.
It's harder
Than learning orchestration, George...
And far more
I've tried to think
about my concerto.
I've been meaning
to take lessons
In composition and theory
and orchestration,
But what happens? You got
me in touch with Ravel.
He introduced me to
Honegger and Milhaud.
They like
to hear my songs,
And if I talk
about studying,
They smile and flatter me.
There's still
Come in.
Good morning,
Good morning.
What's this?
For you.
For me?
His name's Tinker.
Tinker, eh?
Hello, Tinker. You're
a handsome little bloke.
Oh, I wouldn't do
that to you, fellow.
It was selfish of me to stick
to my painting last night.
I'm beginning
to understand
That painting for you
is like music for me.
If that were true, I'd be the
happiest woman in the world.
I know the real thing
when I see it,
But I can't put it
on canvas.
Maybe that's because
you're too critical.
Why don't you
let yourself go?
That, too, is easier
for you than for me.
I think you're doing
yourself an injustice.
I don't know much
about painting-not yet.
Who told you
what to buy?
I just took what
hit me right.
Do you want to see
the rest of them?
Yes, I'd like to.
They were sent up
While I was at the theater last night.
When I get back home,
I'll hang a few of them on
the walls and study them.
I might even take a crack
at painting some myself.
Do you think
it would relax me
When my stomach nerves
get wound up too tight?
The night
I met you,
They told me you were
America personified.
Well, I suppose I am.
Over here, I feel more American
than I do when I'm at home.
You think that whatever
you want to do, you can.
You just take everything for granted.
If you have time to look
at paintings in Paris,
You take along a few
samples, just like that-
hits you right.
That's the American way.
But, Christine,
you're American, too.
Why not come back?
Maybe that's what's
wrong with your work-
You've been away
too long.
Let me show you
New York
The way
you showed me Paris.
Chris, you'll come
to New York?
Would serve you
right if I did.
I lost all my money
on the Dempsey-Tunney fight.
Liquor and parties are
my only escape these days.
From what?
Try roller-skating.
Oh, Max.
Ed, you're slipping. You'd
better have another drink.
It's almost time now.
I can hardly wait!
Don't think I'm calm.
Neither is Ira.
He's lost all restraint.
He's been rhyming whiskey
with gin all night.
Take it easy, Ira. You're
under contract with me now.
Let's take a peek
out of the window.
Why aren't you
glowing, Oscar?
I refuse to glow for any prodigal
who makes 300 grand a year.
Why don't you
play something?
I haven't
eaten anything.
Come on, Oscar,
play something.
What would you
like to hear?
How about
Somebody Loves Me?
There's a taxi.
It's George!
Get ready, everybody!
George is coming.
Hurry, Oscar,
he's coming.
I may as well sit here
while I can.
George will soon
take over.
Shh. Keep quiet. I'm going
to put out the lights.
Welcome home!
Max, you old scoundrel,
you hatched all this up.
Ira, Lee, I want you all
to meet Christine Gilbert.
Good evening.
How do you do?
Good evening.
Uh... Mrs. Gilbert has
been in Europe for years.
of course.
George insisted
that I come.
He didn't expect
such a large party.
Come in,
Mrs. Gilbert.
Thank you.
Any friend of George
is most welcome here.
Surprised, George?
I? Ira,
why didn't you tell me?
They threatened me.
The Gershwin
I see you've learned
to play with both hands.
I took the liberty of
recording our Rhapsody.
Yeah, I heard it, and I
still like my recording.
Tell me something,
Good evening, Mrs.
Gilbert. My name's Levant.
Tell me something. If you
had it to do all over again,
Would you still fall
in love with yourself?
Play do, do, do.
No. Fascinating Rhythm.
Clap yo' Hands.
Lady Be Good.
Oscar, do it again.
I can't do it again.
I haven't eaten.
Bidin' My Time,
Yeah. Bidin' My Time.
I'm bidin' my time
'cause that's the kind...
Well, an evening with
Gershwin is a Gershwin evening.
Whenever he sees a piano,
he'll leave any girl flat.
You mustn't
take offense.
I keep busy...
On the contrary...
I quite understand.
You see, George is
never quite so happy
As when he's playing his
own music for his friends.
Yes, I know.
How about a drink?
Thank you.
Tell me, how did
George do in Paris?
Did he learn a lot
Yes, I think
he did.
Did he finish
his concerto?
That's what
he went there for.
Concerto? Concerto?
George is going to
do another musical.
Are you in show business,
too, Mr. Dreyfus?
You have been in Europe a long time,
Haven't you,
Mrs. Gilbert?
The rents
are cheaper there.
Have a drink?
No. Just water.
I've been trying to protect
George from highbrows-
That is to say, from
symphonies and concertos.
George will go
his own way.
After all, there's no
reason why he shouldn't write
Popular songs one day
and symphonies the next.
Those long
Take up a lot of valuable time.
You don't drink,
do you?
Thank you.
Time seems to be
scarce over here.
Not mine.
Mr. Levant, you're not
so ferocious as you sound.
Don't let that
get around.
You know, George has
often spoken about you.
I understand
you compose, too.
If it wasn't
for Gershwin,
I could have been a pretty
good mediocre composer.
But, Julie, don't
let it upset you.
I'm sure it doesn't
mean a thing.
Just one of those shipboard roman...
I begin
to understand now
Why George
didn't write to me.
All the work on his concerto over there.
You haven't heard
the news.
He's writing a new show, for you, Julie.
Ira is doing the lyrics.
What a combination.
Play Embraceable You.
Let's get Julie
to sing it.
Where is she?
Max, my head is splitting.
Please get me out of here.
But I can't leave
my guests.
Come now,
keep your chin up.
Go through
with this, Julie.
Julie, where have you
been? We've missed you.
Everybody has been asking for you.
You must sing for us
now. But, George, I can't.
I've just been
telling Julie
the new show.
Ira is going to write
the lyrics. Mr. Words.
Mr. Music.
Julie, we'll make this the
best part you've ever had.
Just like old times,
only better.
We'll all be
together again.
Now, how about
Embraceable You?
Can you lend me
cab fare to go home?
Embrace me
My sweet
embraceable you
Embrace me
You irreplaceable you
Just one look at you
My heart
grew tipsy in me
You and you alone...
What a wonderful
welcome for George.
Mr. Host,
the season
Has now officially started.
Thank you, Mr. Words.
I love all
the many charms
About you
Above all...
It's exciting
to have George back.
I want
my arms about you
Don't be
a naughty baby
Come to Mama
Come to Mama, do
My... sweet...
Pardon me.
Do you like it?
So much that
it makes me furious.
You could do much better, dear,
if you'd only get started again.
Go on with
your work, George.
I'll browse around
the other masters.
Please do.
I, uh, I feel sort of guilty, Christine.
You don't paint
You're not happy
in New York.
You're happy.
When you're around,
I am.
No. You don't need
anyone or anything.
Whatever you touch
turns to gold.
You're busy every hour.
You have hundreds of friends
who like what you like.
I'm not good for you,
You would be if you'd
only make up your mind.
Then I'd be sure
of you.
Let's not put it off
any longer, darling.
George, you're
the perfect bachelor.
It wouldn't do.
Don't you love me
Maybe I love you
too much.
That's just what
I didn't want to happen.
I want you
to marry me.
It'll never work, George.
We both want too much
out of life.
We'll have
what we want.
Tomorrow we'll
get a license
And look
for a place.
How about
a penthouse?
A penthouse
built for two.
You sound like
your songs, George,
And you expect life
to be like your music,
But it isn't.
You can make up songs,
but you can't make up life.
Please go on
with your painting.
All right.
You must
finish it soon.
You'll wait?
You've made such a fine start, George.
You mustn't
waste a minute.
The light won't hold... much longer.
George, why did you
come here?
What's happened,
I had to see you, Julie.
You haven't felt the
need for quite a while.
But, Julie
- It's all right, George.
I knew I shouldn't have taken this show.
To have me around would just bother you.
You know how I've always
felt about you, Julie.
I have to talk to someone.
Could it be that Mrs.
Gilbert isn't available?
She's gone...
To Mexico.
Read it, Julie.
You have the wrong idea
about me, George.
You think I can be
put away in lavender
And then be taken out
as a last resort.
I don't want
to read your letters.
I don't want you
to cry on my shoulder.
I don't want
anything at all.
I've been all
mixed up, Julie.
Please try
to understand.
I do understand...
Too well.
Everything I say
is wrong.
Please go.
Ready, Julie?
Come in, Max.
What's wrong?
"George, dear, by the time this reaches
you, I'll be on my way to Mexico."
"Perhaps I can get back
to work down there.
"Anyhow, I must try.
"Your destiny moves straight
ahead in fast 2-4 time.
"Mine simply goes
around in a circle.
"I meant it when I said
you were the ideal bachelor.
"You think
of yourself first,
"And that's
as it should be
"Because you give so much
pleasure to the world.
"I was tempted for a while
to spoil it all for you.
"Now I know better.
I've done her
a great injustice.
The woman has good sense-
I mean, as far
as she is concerned.
Don't spare
my feelings, Max.
I know she's right, as
far as anyone is concerned.
George has to go
his way alone.
He must be free.
Yes, but, Julie, with you,
it would be different.
No, Max. I'll never
be a handicap.
The day
this show closes,
I'm leaving town...
for good.
18 minutes exactly.
Mmm! Such a mechanism.
Yes, yes.
Poppa, I'm seeing things
in you I never saw before.
That's all,
Mr. Gershwin.
You may
get dressed now.
Here are the laboratory reports, Doctor.
Well, Doctor?
It's leukemia.
Say, what is this
fancy-sounding disease?
The white blood cells keep
eating up the red ones.
And is that bad?
Very bad.
How bad
is it?
Shall I be
Always the best policy.
Half a year. Month or two either way.
Piece of peppermint,
No mistake?
No mistake.
When does George
come home from Cuba?
He's planning a concert tour, Poppa.
You know, sometimes I
think George is unhappy.
Success isn't enough.
I want you
to take care of him, Ira.
Watch over him always.
Don't worry,
You'll do me
a big favor, Ira.
Why should George know,
or Momma?
Why should we worry them?
We'll keep it a secret
between you and me.
Accidentally on purpose
We'll forget
to tell them, hmm?
A trick
before high heaven.
Yes, makes
the angels weep.
What's that?
Why, the rest of your
quotation, Mr. Gershwin,
From Shakespeare.
I spoke a quotation?
How do you like that,
Ira? I spoke a quotation...
From Shakespeare.
How's my Poppa?
I think I'll
have to take you
To the mountains
for a few weeks.
Take Momma.
Are you happy, Georgie?
You're beginning to lose
your hair, my boy.
I still have
more than you.
You're crowding
too many things.
You should take more time
to be happy, Georgie.
With all due respect...
It should have been Julie.
People like
the Cuban Overture?
It gets a very
good hand, Poppa.
You'll hear it soon.
How long
does it run, Georgie?
Exactly how long?
10 minutes, Poppa.
10 minutes exactly.
10 minutes.
An important...
Wait a minute.
Wait a minute.
The point they're making in the song
Love is mine...
Is that they more than get along
Whether it's rain or storm...
And he is not ashamed to say
Or shine...
She made him what he is today
It does a person good to see
You are mine...
Such happy domesticity
Never another...
The way they're making love, you'd swear
They're not a married pair
And I am yours...
He says no matter what occurs
Tell me that I'm yours...
Whatever he may have is hers
Show me that smile...
The point that she is making is
My heart adores...
Whatever she may have is his
More than divine
To know that love
like yours
Is mine!
If the rest
of the show
Is as good
as that song,
You'll have
another hit.
With a little more suffering,
I could become a great singer.
We've been doing the suffering, my boy.
Now let's go
home and to bed.
It's time
for breakfast.
What does your father say
when you come home so late?
What's the matter? You
fellas quitting already?
I got a date
with my insomnia.
We haven't even
started yet.
What's the rush,
You can do all this during rehearsals.
I want to get this done
and start on something new.
How do you
like the fella?
Of Thee I Sing just
won the Pulitzer Prize,
He's got another show in rehearsal,
and now he's talking about-
I'm not talking about another
show. I want to do something else.
What is it,
What do you
want to do?
I've been thinking
about an opera.
It's 4:00 in the morning, and
he's thinking about an opera.
Don't you think
I can do it?
Of course
you can, George,
But what kind
of opera?
I don't know exactly.
I'd like to use
a folk theme,
Something American
if I can find it.
If anybody wants to find
this penthouse beachcomber,
You'll find him over at
Ira's kitchen. Come on, Ira.
Let's close up shop.
We've been working all night.
Nonsense. We've got
too much to do.
You can go on if you
want to. I'm going home.
But we should try to
- Let me go home, will you?
I want to see if Lee
still remembers me.
You remember Lee-my wife.
Ok, Ira. Good night. Tell her
I said your lyrics are swell.
Thanks, Mr. Music.
Good night,
Mr. Words.
Well, George, what is it
you're trying to forget?
Don't tell me you've turned
yourself into a dynamo
Just for the fun of grinding
out one hit after another.
Success is coming
out of your ears.
Why don't you relax and
just be a human being again?
I don't know what
you're talking about.
I'm talking
about you.
I can see a boy way down in
those streets who dreamed himself
A long way from
the ground he started on.
Came up like an elevator.
Now he's looking
for new buttons to push.
Seems to have an idea
that happiness is vertical
And the last stop is heaven.
Quit it,
will you, Max?
I thought you'd finished
your portrait.
I don't know if I'll
ever get it done.
It's beginning
to get on my nerves.
Every time I look at myself,
I see something different.
I can't get George Gershwin
to stay on the canvas.
He keeps running
away from me.
I can see 4 Georges, and heaven
knows how many more there are-
The man who writes hits,
the man who dreams,
The man who climbs
the golden stairs,
And maybe there's one
left over for Julie.
Shut up, Max! If you're
going to talk like that,
Get out of my house.
Max, Max.
I didn't mean that.
I don't want to hurt you. You know that.
I don't want
to hurt anyone.
These headaches...
I guess
you're right, Max.
Part of me
is lonely.
Part of me got
lost somewhere.
Maybe way down deep,
I'm just a family man...
Without a family.
I'm proud of you,
To me, you're the voice
of your generation.
I just want
to see you happy.
That's why
I mentioned Julie.
Good night.
You're so delici-ous
And so caprici-ous
I grow ambiti-ous
To have you care
for me
In that connect-ion
You're my select-ion
For true affect-ion
For all the time
to be
Now, I've had 1, 2, 3, 4, 5,
6, 7, 8, 9, 10 beaus before
But you're the one,
the only one
The one beau I adore
Yes, on reflect-ion
In that connect-ion
If you've
no object-ion
To me, you're just
If you're suspici-ous
Why, I'm repetiti-ous
It's 'cause you're so
What on earth are you
doing in Florida, George?
I was just about to
ask you the same thing.
That's easy.
I'm earning a living.
Why did you turn down
my shows? Why, Julie?
We've been all over
that once, George.
I want you
to come back.
Why did you come?
To see you.
Well, that-that's
very friendly, but-
Julie, don't talk like that,
as if we were strangers.
I need you, Julie.
I've always needed you.
That's a romantic notion,
You don't need anyone.
How does it feel to be
sitting on top of the world?
Remember the time
you had your first flop?
You were a child, but you said
you didn't have time for flops.
You had too much to do.
Well, now you've done more than
even you could have dreamed of then.
I'm not so sure
of that.
You'd always feel
that way.
That's part
of your restlessness.
Maybe it's even
part of your music.
I've found you can live
in a penthouse,
Surrounded by people,
And still be alone.
Poppa knew that.
The last thing he said was,
"it should have been Julie."
It should have been
Julie. It still can be.
I want you to come back.
Please, you must.
please don't go on.
Oh, Herb. Herb!
Yes, Julie?
George, this is Herb
Stone, the orchestra leader.
Of course.
Herb, this is-
George Gershwin. How nice to meet you.
You see, George...
Herb and I are engaged to be married.
Julie, I-
Thank you,
Mr. Gershwin.
Julie, this is a-
Good night, Julie.
Julie, darling, what'd
you tell him that for?
I'm sorry, Herb.
I had to tell him
something to make him go.
George Gershwin.
And you don't
love him?
I never said that.
And the livin' is easy
Fish are jumpin'
And the cotton is high
Oh, your daddy's rich
And your ma
is good-lookin'
So hush, little baby
Don't you cry
One of these
You're gonna rise up
Then you'll spread
your wings
And you'll take
the sky
But till that mornin'
There's a-nothin'
can harm you
With daddy and mammy
Standin' by
Most of the audience
loved it.
Tell me the worst. What
did the critics say?
Some of them said
it wasn't opera.
Why wasn't it opera? Just
because ordinary people liked it?
Others said
it wasn't Gershwin.
After spending two of the
hardest years of my life.
If that isn't
Gershwin, what is?
In all the years we've
been together, George,
I've been right,
now and then,
But about Porgy and Bess,
I was wrong.
This time,
you've done it, my boy.
You've made opera
The nearer we get
to the coast,
The faster
the train goes.
How I love it.
to the wheels, Ira.
Got to make time.
Got to make time.
with plenty of plenty
Keep their locks
on the door
The porter, sir.
What critic said Porgy
and Bess was too highbrow?
Come in.
Yowsah, yowsah, yowsah!
I thought we lost you at Albuquerque.
I had to autograph some
blankets. Here's the telegram.
From Los Angeles.
"We wish you
to perform
"An all-Gershwin
"February 10.
The Los Angeles
That's the chance
I've been waiting for.
Play good, George, and
I'll get a job in pictures.
Good night, Ira.
Happy dreams,
Think about
that concert.
The difference between an
upper berth and a lower berth
Is the difference
between talent and genius.
Got to
make time. Got to make time.
Got to make time.
Got to make time.
Got to make time.
Got to make time...
Georgie, what is it?
What's happened?
My fingers
wouldn't obey.
But you've only played
it a hundred times.
And then the pain
between my eyes,
Like a knife.
Oscar, talk to the crowd.
Hold them off
until we get out.
You're coming home
with me.
Come. We'll go home.
Ira, what's happening to my boy?
don't worry, Momma.
No, you can't talk to him
now. He's resting, Momma.
But it isn't right for
me to be so far away
When my George
is ill.
Ira, I'm coming out
by plane.
No, Momma, please. We'll have him
back in New York in a few weeks,
And then we'll all
be together again.
All right. I'll
call you tomorrow.
Take care of him.
Good night.
Good night, Momma.
Ira, these lyrics
are wonderful.
They are good,
aren't they?
They practically
sing themselves.
You could use your voice, too, you know.
When George is finished playing,
Maybe he'll go over it with you.
I'm getting
scared, Oscar.
I think it's a nervous breakdown.
You exaggerate, Ira.
You think so?
No, I don't.
Is there something
I can do, Georgie?
I've just got
a headache.
Maybe it's us. Maybe
we get on your nerves.
It's this stabbing pain in my head.
I'm sick,
that's all.
Hold my hand,
Ira... tight.
It eases the pain.
Yes, Georgie.
Your kid brother
is giving you
A lot of trouble,
isn't he?
Let's forget
all this work.
Somebody else
can finish it.
6 months' rest
is what you need.
I'd blow up
in a thousand pieces
If I didn't work
for that long.
You'll blow up anyway if
you don't quit for a while.
I can't help it.
Work is a compulsion. It's an obsession.
And there's so much
I want to do.
What are you trying to prove,
Georgie? You've already-
Don't you see, Ira?
It's only
with my music
That I can prove
my right to live.
I must write...
And I can't even hear
it inside me anymore.
New York?
Just a moment, please.
It's Julie.
Talk to her, George.
Oh, Julie.
Just your voice.
I've been so lonely.
please let me come out.
I can't bear to be so far away when
you're ill. I can take the next plane.
Meet me, darling.
We mustn't waste a minute.
George, do you hear me?
Yes, darling.
You're right.
I need you.
Come out here, and we'll make
up for all the lost years.
Remember? I have the longest
lifeline you ever saw.
Hurry, darling.
Tinker, wake up.
Wake up, Tinker.
You can't sleep now.
Julie is coming.
Wake up, Tinker.
Good news from Julie?
She's coming out here. George, I don't-
I'm all right. My headache
is gone, and I can play.
Don't overdo it, Georgie.
Take it easy, fella.
Why should I take it easy?
I feel wonderful.
Now we can finish
the score of the picture
And get on
with something else.
I'd like to try a ballet. Or maybe
a string quartet. Or better yet...
I'd like to set the
Gettysburg Address to music.
Lee, darling,
Julie is coming.
So that's it.
How do you feel?
I'm hungry.
How about some food?
I'll get you some
right away.
I'm hungry,
too, lee,
But I got to
catch a plane.
What for?
I'm broadcasting our
concerto in new york.
Remember, it's a very important piece.
Be sure and give
our love to Momma.
I will.
Lots of luck,
Take care
of yourself, George.
Steve, do you know
the lyrics?
I've been working
with Ira.
Fine. Then let's
make music.
Love walked right in
And drove
the shadows away
Love walked right in
And brought
my sunniest day
One magic moment
And my heart
seemed to know
That love said hello
Though not a word
was spoken
One look, and I forgot
the gloom of the past
One look, and I had
found my future at last
One look, and I had
found a world
Completely new
When love walked in
With you
George! George!
This is Walter Damrosch speaking.
Ladies and gentlemen,
We have interrupted
the concerto
To tell you that its
composer, George Gershwin,
Has just passed away
in California.
We will continue
the Concerto in F.
George Gershwin
will live
As long as there is joy,
As long as there is music
in the world.
He was a lucky young man,
Lucky to be so in love
with the world
And because the world
was so in love with him.
He had the happy faculty
of enjoying all his talents,
And through them,
he gave voice
To the America he knew
and loved so well.
We rejoice that through
his imperishable harmonies,
George Gershwin
will forever sing to us.
We weep that in passing,
He left so many songs
And now the orchestra, with
Mr. Paul Whiteman conducting,
Will play
the Rhapsody in Blue.
At the piano,
George's friend,
Mr. Oscar Levant.