The Big Heat (1953) Movie Script

Mr. Lagana.
I know it's late.
Wake him up.
Tell him it's
tom duncan's widow.
I'm very sorry, mr. Lagana, but there's
an important call on the private line.
A woman who says
she's tom duncan's widow.
That's what she said.
This is lagana.
No. I'm glad you
called me, mrs. Duncan.
I appreciate it.
Yes, of course
we will get together.
But now i suggest you call
the police immediately.
Call vince.
Mr. Lagana
wants vince stone.
It's his girl.
She says he's playing cards.
This is not a social call, debby.
Tell vince i want him, right away.
Oh, sure, mr. Lagana. I always
like to tell vince you're calling.
I like to see him jump.
It's him!
Oh, pass the deal, hmm?
Why don't you shut the door and
see if anybody needs a drink?
well, i don't know
about your politicians,
But i'm so bored
i need one.
Shut the door.
Yes, mike?
Well, i didn't know it was the private line
ringing, or i would have answered myself.
When did it happen?
Oh, sure,
i'll see to it.
Too bad you had to make the trip
out from headquarters, sergeant.
From out of bed, you mean. When a cop
kills himself, they want a full report.
Did you know him? No.
Just to say hello to.
He was in charge
of the record bureau.
Single contact wound. Powder
burn on his temple and right hand.
Suicide. No question. Tell the
wagon boys they can have him, huh?
No note or anything,
huh, gus? No. Nothing.
You'd better make a list of all
this stuff for the report, huh?
I'm going upstairs, have
a talk with mrs. Duncan.
Please come in.
Mrs. Duncan,
i won't keep you very long.
You needn't apologize.
I know this is necessary.
Please sit down.
Thank you.
My name is david bannion.
I knew your husband slightly.
Tom had many friends.
Would you mind telling me
what happened?
When i first heard the shot,
I was too surprised to move
for a few seconds.
Then i ran downstairs.
When i found him,
he was- He was dead.
i'm sorry i have to ask you
these questions,
But they want
a full report downtown.
Of course.
When a policeman kills himself,
the department gets worried.
Well, that depends
on the circumstances.
There weren't
any circumstances.
Everything tom ever did...
Was clean and wholesome.
That's the kind of man
he was.
do you know why
he took his life?
It-It must have been
his health.
S- Several times
the past few months,
He complained...
About a pain
along his left side.
When i suggested
he see the police surgeon,
He'd make excuses.
I think he was afraid to.
Then he didn't
see a doctor?
Not that he ever told me.
You've been most helpful.
Now look, if there's anything
you need, anything at all,
You get in touch
with us, huh?
Thank you, mr. Bannion.
good-Bye, mrs. Duncan.
What's with dinner? How about
putting the paper down and helping?
All right.
Whoop. Hey.
What's that, steak?
Medium rare.
How do you manage steaks
on my salary?
You know, downtown,
they just don't believe me.
- Tell them you married an heiress.
- All right.
Next year, when joyce
starts kindergarten,
You're gonna have to kiss the steaks
good-Bye until she finishes college.
Unless you become police
commissioner in the meantime.
Oh, that's inevitable.
Oh, naturally.
Okay, commissioner, you get
the stringy end of the steak.
What about joyce? She go to bed all
right? Just the usual tug of war.
She had to go to the bathroom a
few times, hear three stories...
And have a glass of water
before she finally went to sleep.
She's angelic all day. But
at night, she's a holy terror.
That's the way
i usually describe you.
That's what the book says, though,
doesn't it? Be patient, but firm.
The book, the book.
Very scientific and calm.
The trouble is, the authors
have never met our daughter.
Well, it's very simple. She's
madly in love with me, that's all.
Hey, you know something. That's
the conflict between the two of you.
You're both in love
with the same wonderful guy.
Right? Right. Wrong.
We're just used to you.
Well? How is it?
It's good steak.
You want some beer?
I'll take a sip of yours.
You see? That's exactly what i
mean. It's a perfect marriage.
We share the same scotch, the same
cigarette, the same can of beer.
Among other things.
Hey, you know something. I'm gonna drink
mine, i'm gonna take a sip of yours.
That'll be something
different for a change, huh?
Oh, they'll wake joyce.
Well, he's having dinner.
It's sergeant kahn.
Hello, marty. Ye-
Who says duncan
didn't kill himself?
I saw the body, marty. There's no
question about it being suicide.
All right,
what's her name?
All right,
i'll go see her.
Lucy chapman around?
The last stool
on the other end.
Lucy chapman?
I'm bannion, homicide.
Oh. With this band playing, you
need megaphones to talk at the bar.
We can sit in a booth.
All right.
Okay, what is this
information you have?
This story is all wrong, mr. Bannion.
Why, tom wouldn't kill himself.
He wasn't worried about his
health, not for a single minute.
No? Then what was he worried
about? Nothing. Nothing at all.
Not after his wife
agreed to divorce him.
Duncan told you he was getting a
divorce? He talked about nothing else.
When was this? Night
before last. My night off.
What'll it be, folks? You
don't have to order anything.
That's all right. I'll
have a beer. What about you?
Only when i'm working.
- How'd you get to know duncan?
- Well, i- I met him a year ago.
A year last may 11,
down in lakeside.
Tom owned
a summer place there.
I liked him right away.
He was a real wonderful guy,
mr. Bannion. Nice and gentle.
Thirty-Five, mister.
Pay now.
Thank you.
Tom used to come
to the club every night.
His wife traveled a lot.
Sometimes, when she
was away, i-
I used to go to the house.
We'd go swimming and then lie around
in the sun. That sounds very cozy.
Oh, it wasn't that way,
mr. Bannion.
Oh, sure. Sure.
Please. Please,
you've got to believe that.
You've got to understand
how things were with tom.
How he was caught between the
two of us. Between me and that-
That leech he was married to.
What's your pitch, lucy?
You trying to use us
for a shakedown?
Sure. I understand. You're
covering up for a cop's widow.
You don't want to find out
anything that'll change her story.
- I want to find out facts.
- Oh, in a pig's eye you want facts!
The only difference between me and bertha
duncan is that i work at being a b-Girl...
And she has a wedding ring and a
marriage certificate. That'll be all.
Maybe for you. I can still
talk to the newspapers.
Yeah, i know. You can talk
yourself into a lot of trouble.
So what? At least
i'll show she's a liar.
Tom had no reason
to kill himself.
The fact is, he did kill
himself. And that's positive.
Can i have a brandy?
She claims she saw your
husband a few nights ago-
Wednesday night
- And there was nothing wrong with his health.
What are you trying to say,
mr. Bannion?
I'm just trying
to check up on her story.
Find out why your husband
took his life.
Maybe i've been trying too hard to keep our
dirty family linen from being washed in public.
I suppose that woman told you
about their relationship?
She said your husband was in good
health and very cheerful, mrs. Duncan,
And that you'd agreed
to divorce him.
She's a liar.
Tom never wanted a divorce.
And he wasn't a well man.
I have no choice now...
Except to tell you
about tom and myself.
In the years we were married,
there were four lucy chapmans.
Four that i found out about.
Tom was vain.
He had to prove to himself that
he was still attractive to women.
Maybe he did boast to that
woman that he was in good health.
What else would you
expect him to do?
I wish this visit
hadn't been necessary.
There's a chance lucy chapman
might try a little blackmail.
She knows that you own
that house at lakeside.
Probably thinks
you're wealthy.
a wealthy policeman
would be a novelty.
Thank you for your patience,
mr. Bannion.
There's just one small thing i'd like to
clear up, so there'll be no loose ends.
Of course. Would you mind telling
me about the house at lakeside?
When it was bought, the price that
was paid, small details like that?
I'd mind very much!
For tom's sake, i resent the
implication of your questions.
Look, mrs. Duncan,
there was no implication.
Lucy chapman may run to the
newspapers. And it's my job...
To have the material to offset any
insinuations that she might make.
And it's my job,
with tom dead and defenseless,
To preserve his good name
the best way i can.
Good night, mr. Bannion.
Good night.
Okay. So long.
Here you are, sir.
Trouble automatically
catches up with girls like her.
Looks like a sex crime to me.
You said she wasn't attacked.
Well, that's not unusual
in this type case.
I'd say pretty definitely
it was psychopathic.
You saw those cigarette burns
on her body. Yeah, i saw them.
Every single one of them.
What's that name again,
Miss chapman.
Lucy chapman.
The lieutenant's been
buzzing you every ten minutes.
He didn't say what for.
Sit down, dave.
I had a call from upstairs.
What have you been bothering
mrs. Duncan about? Just routine.
Well, the first time was,
not the second visit.
Did she complain?
Somebody did.
It was bad judgement to bother a cop's
widow about the love life of her husband.
- Good or bad, it was my judgement.
- You're missing the point.
I'm the one that gets the
pressure calls from upstairs.
I'm the one
that has to explain.
You don't keep an office like this
very long stepping on a lot of corns.
You want me to go upstairs and explain?
Not you. You're a
corn-Stepper by instinct.
No, all i'm asking you to do, and
i'm not even ordering it, dave,
Stop bothering mrs. Duncan.
I don't want to jam you up, ted,
but i may have to see her once more.
Why? You have any doubt
duncan killed himself?
No, none at all.
I just got back from the
county morgue. Hmm, the barfly?
I read the teletype
about your identification.
Lucy chapman used to be duncan's
girlfriend. And the army's and navy's.
Yeah, maybe so. She talks to me
just once and like that, she's dead.
That's county homicide's
Let's worry about this office. We're
spilling over with unfinished business.
Lucy chapman was probably trying to
shake down some sucker who wouldn't shake.
When barflies get killed, it's for
any one of a dozen crummy reasons.
You know that.
Let the sheriff's office...
Sort out this jigsaw.
Meanwhile, we'll stop
pestering the widow. Okay?
You still asking?
No more.
I'm telling you.
First i know, lucy's quitting
about 2:00 in the morning.
She comes to me
and asks to be paid off.
Did she say why?
I don't ask.
All any of these dames owe me is a
night's work, one night at a time.
They come and go like flies.
Only this fly
got herself strangled.
These things happen, sergeant.
Outside of my place, some of these
babes keep pretty shady company.
It figures. They know nobody
cares much what happens to them.
Did she have any close friends
among the other girls here?
They don't stay long enough to
make friends. Where did she live?
If i ask for an address, they
lie. It's not worth the bother.
They're floaters. Not much more
than a suitcase full of nothing...
Between them and the gutter.
Hey, you know something.
You ought to be doing
radio commercials.
How to talk a lot
and say nothing.
Why, i'd be tickled to help
if i could.
When i get some answers,
i'll be back.
Glad to see you
anytime, sergeant.
This is tierney.
Tell him it's important.
Sorry to bother you.
Bannion just left here.
No, sir. I just gave
him a lot of double-Talk.
He said he'd be back again.
Yes, sir. I will.
Okay, buster,
who'd you call?
My mother.
Would you rather go downtown to answer
the questions? Don't scare me, sergeant.
Five minutes after we get downtown,
you'll be answering the questions.
Get your coat.
Only somebody will want to know why
you're butting into a county case.
Why you don't stop annoying people,
especially after you've been told once.
You get your news fast, don't
you? Special carrier pigeon.
Do we still go downtown?
No. Not today.
When we do,
I'll have enough answers
to close this joint up.
Tell that
to your mother.
Oh, that's the most
beautiful castle...
In the whole world. It's a police
station, daddy. Just like yours.
Hello, little bossy.
Where's big bossy, huh? Here.
Hello, darling.
What's all these
- Expecting company or something?
Al and marge
are coming to dinner.
Come, daddy. Help me build
my roof. You better shower.
And get some cocktails ready. Yeah.
You look down in the
dumps. It's nothing much.
Is it a case?
I told you, it's nothing.
Well, you'll have to use a different
tone if you expect me to believe that.
All right, i'll bring home an affidavit tomorrow, if
- I'm sorry.
- I'm sorry, baby.
- It's all right.
You're entitled
to let off steam.
Ah, it's just a letdown.
I guess it's kind of an
occupational disease with cops.
You know that girl that phoned,
that lucy chapman? Mm-Hmm.
Well, she's a case now.
County homicide.
i'm sorry, darling.
It's all right, darling. Daddy will
help you build even a bigger one.
oh. Let's go see
who's phoning us.
Can i talk?
Of course.
Yes, it is.
Who is this?
He wants you.
Who is it?
I- I don't know.
This is dave bannion.
Listen, slob, stop minding other people's
business if you want to stay alive.
Some big people
are getting annoyed.
Who is this?
What did he say to you?
You can fill in the four-Letter
words better than i can.
Honey, i'll try to be back
before al and marge leave.
But, dave, you don't
even know who called.
No. This is just another part of the
scheme to make me crawl back in my shell.
I don't know who called. But
i know where to go to find out.
Just a moment. Who do you
want to see? Mike lagana.
Oh, sorry. I didn't recognize you,
sergeant. How many men on this detail?
Three of us on the day and night
shift and four after midnight.
Ten cops to watch over
mike lagana.
One hundred bucks a day
of the taxpayers' money.
Well, mr. Lagana kind of runs
things. I guess that's no secret.
No. That's
no secret at all.
You like this detail?
I do what i'm told.
Yeah. That's what we're all
supposed to do, isn't it?
Good evening, sir. I'm from the
police department. Is mr. Lagana in?
I'll see, sir.
It's a little drafty outside.
Please wait.
This way, officer.
I promised my daughter her father
won't be seen or heard tonight.
What's your name again?
I think the butler missed it.
Bannion. Dave bannion.
I'm from homicide.
I think
i've heard of you.
My mother.
A great old lady. They broke
the mold when they made her.
She died last may.
She lived here with me.
Had her own suite of rooms.
Her own bath. Everything.
Never got over being
surprised about my success.
You didn't come here
to listen to me.
Well, what is it this time?
Benefit dance? Pension fund drive?
I came about a murder.
You came here to my home
about a murder?
A girl named lucy chapman was
murdered last night. Or this morning.
First she was tortured, then
strangled. Who runs your department?
It's lieutenant wilks.
Mm-Hmm. Wilks, huh?
Yeah, it was an old-Fashioned
killing. Prohibition kind.
That's why i thought you might
- I don't care what you thought.
I'm glad to help you boys
whenever i can.
But i got an office
for that sort of thing.
This is my home. And i don't
like dirt tracked into it.
I see.
And i violated your
immaculate home, is that it?
That's exactly it.
And tomorrow morning, i'll see you
don't get the chance to do it again.
What'll you do, make another phone
call, or have somebody make it for you?
I've seen some dummies
in my time,
But you're
in a class by yourself.
I'm stupid because i want some
answers about a murder, is that it?
Shut up and get out. We don't talk
about those things in this house, do we?
No, it's too elegant,
too respectable.
Nice kids. Party.
Painting of mama
up there on the wall, huh?
No place for a stinking cop.
It's only a place for a hoodlum who built
this house out of corruption and murder.
You couldn't plant enough flowers
around here to kill the smell.
I warned you to get out.
Cops have homes too.
Only sometimes there isn't
enough money to pay the rent...
Because a cop gets hounded off the
force by your thieving cockroaches...
For trying to do an honest job. George!
What's the matter? You think i
live under a rock or something?
Your creeps have no compunction about
phoning my house, giving me orders,
Talking to my wife like she was a dirty
- Yes, sir?
Get rid of him.
Let's go, mister.
Take your hand off, george.
It comes off
when we get to your car.
Better not, george.
You want to pinch-Hit
for your boy, lagana?
What makes you think you can walk into
lagana's house and slug his bodyguard?
You're no rookie. You've been
around long enough to know better.
I'm not asking you to take the rap
for me. I'll stand up for what i do.
Big, fancy words.
Well, i'm in no mood for them.
I'm the one getting
the squeeze from upstairs.
What am i supposed to do when some
cop-Hater phones my home and insults my wife?
Sit home and like it?
Are you trying to tell me
lagana phoned your house?
I'm trying to tell you nothing dirty
happens in this city without lagana's okay.
I'm not interested in your theories.
Not when they affect my job.
You're just begging to go back into
uniform, pounding a beat in the sticks.
That lucy chapman killing
is a county squeal.
It's the sheriff's
headache, not ours.
Now i told you that once,
and i'm telling you again.
I won't tell you
a third time.
That'll be all, sergeant.
Let the pans soak. I'll
scour them when we come back.
The main feature doesn't start
for about an hour.
Do you mind if i put
my two cents in?
No, honey, i don't mind.
I've been thinking about
lieutenant wilks.
That leaning tower of jelly.
You know how long he and his wife
have looked forward to retirement.
We've done it ourselves when
we've looked that far ahead.
Wilks only has a few more years to
go. He's worried about his pension.
If i'd had any sense,
i'd have turned in my badge.
Your big trouble, honey, is that
you attack yourself from all sides,
Like jersey mosquitoes.
You don't want to quit the
department, not for one minute.
What am i supposed to do, hold
onto my job by just stringing along?
Afraid to look to the left
or to the right...
Because i might see something
that they don't want me to see?
If you do, you're gonna
have trouble from me.
Just keep leading with your
chin and don't you compromise.
That's what i wanted to hear
you say. Thanks, inspector.
If i tell you something,
you won't laugh?
No, i won't laugh.
I love you.
See, i'm not laughing.
Oh, let's stay home, huh?
We're having company.
I can't sleep.
Nonsense, miss bannion.
You trot right back to bed.
Hey. The thing for you to do
now, according to the book,
Is to lead her to b-E-D with
great kindness and great firmness.
Let's go. Suppose you try it.
I'll drive over and get the sitter.
Who'd you get?
Tell her not to bring half the high
school along to keep her company this time.
hey, little girls like you...
Should be sleeping
right about now.
Tell me a story.
In bed, darling. In
bed. Which story, daddy?
Well, let's see. How about,
uh, the three little kittens?
That lost their mittens.
I need the car keys.
Here. Hey!
Nothing. Nothing at
all. Be back in a minute.
Go on, daddy.
In bed first, darling.
Here we go.
The three little kittens that
lost their mittens. Go on, daddy.
All right. The three little
kittens, uh, they lost their mittens.
And they began to cry, and,
oh, they had a terrible time.
And their mother came home,
and she said, "oh, my!
You-You kittens,
you've lost your- "
Stay in bed, darling.
bannion's here, commissioner.
Have him come right in.
I have a lot of work waiting for
me in my office, commissioner.
Well, let it wait. Your being here
will make bannion more comfortable.
I didn't get the opportunity to
speak to you at the funeral, sergeant,
To tell you how hard
your tragedy has hit us all.
Uh, sit down, will you?
I've put an around-The-Clock
detail at your in-Laws' house.
The report says that's where your
child is staying. That's right.
Yes, it pays
to play it safe.
How is the little girl?
She thinks her mother
went on a trip.
Is there anything
else we can do?
Maybe a loan from the fund to tide you
over this period? Don't hesitate, sergeant.
Find out who planted
the dynamite in my car.
That's item one
on the department's agenda.
I've ordered wilks
to shove everything else aside.
I want this case broken if it
takes a hundred men to do it.
We're checking back on every
homicide you've handled. Why?
I beg your pardon?
I asked you why are you
checking the files?
Well, you've made
a lot of enemies, bannion.
Relatives and friends of
killers you've sent to the chair.
The motive was revenge.
That's obvious.
Is that the way it looks
to you too, lieutenant?
it's worth exploring.
Of course, i'm only
an appointed official.
I haven't the training
and experience you men have.
But i am certain we'll find the
answer in one of these old homicides.
Wilks has eight men on it full time.
Don't worry, there'll be a payoff.
When? It's natural for
you to be impatient,
But these things take time.
Sometimes they take forever.
Now that's no way to talk. Why, there
isn't a man in the entire department...
Wouldn't give a month's pay
to break this case.
What about you, commissioner?
How much would you give?
Just what are you
inferring, sergeant?
I'm asking how much would you give, besides
a lot of phony stories to the newspapers...
A pat on the back and a few kind words
for me? Why don't we go to my office?
Oh, look, dave, you've got to
ease up. Take a few days off.
I'll keep you informed. You? Why,
you frightened excuse for a cop.
Now just a minute, bannion. Why don't
you trot on down to your office...
And wait for him
to call your orders.
Oh, he'll phone you just as soon as
he gets his orders from mike lagana.
I don't want to exert the
authority of my office.
I prefer remembering that
you've been through a lot.
And i'm going to give you
good reason to never forget it.
- You're under suspension!
- Well, you better check with lagana first.
- He might not approve.
- I'll have your badge and gun...
You can have it-
One moment.
I asked for you gun too.
That doesn't belong to the department.
It's mine, bought and paid for.
I'm warning you officially.
Don't try to use it.
I won't. Not until i catch up with
the people who murdered my wife.
Hold it a minute. Take this
along too, will you, please?
The carriage for the truck? No, that's-
They'll bill you quarterly on
the storage charges, mr. Bannion.
Yeah, i know.
Thanks a lot.
I was just leaving.
Let the cab go.
I'll give you a lift.
I prefer the cab, thank you.
I just left wilks.
He said any off-The-Record
help you need is yours.
He feels lousy
about what happened.
Put this carriage in the
cab, will you, please?
Wilks gave me a list of mechanics with
records. He got them from the bomb squad.
I have a list.
Wilks didn't know that.
Tell him to stop bleeding for me.
It'll run all over his pension.
You're way off base, dave.
You don't really know wilks.
I don't want to know him.
Look, i've had a bellyful
of the department and wilks.
And you.
Dave, i wish you'd see
father masterson. Why?
Because you're
on a hate binge.
You've decided people are all
scared rabbits and you spit on them.
Look, i got to lock up.
No man's an island, dave.
You can't set yourself against
the world and get away with it.
Get out.
? Choo choo choo
choo choo choo choo?
? Cha cha cha cha cha cha?
is that you, vince?
Yeah. Larry's with me.
You weren't expecting somebody
else, were you? You'll do.
It's better than
drinking alone.
Hi, larry.
Hi, debby.
What have you
been doing all day?
some career, huh?
Six days a week she shops. On the
seventh, she rests. All tired out.
On her, it looks good.
Thanks, friend.
Go pour yourself a drink.
Hey, that's
nice perfume.
Something new. It attracts
mosquitos and repels men.
It doesn't work that way
with me. It's not supposed to.
oh, that's "his highness. "
I forgot to tell you he was
stopping off. She forgot.
do you ever go
to the circus, larry?
Uh-Uh. You should. And take vince.
There's a man with a big
hat that holds up the hoop,
Cracks the whip
and the animals jump through.
Hop, vince! Hop, larry!
Hop, vince! Hop, larry!
Hop, vince! Hop, larry!
Hop, vince! Hop-
Putting on a vaudeville act,
debby? Just impersonations.
How's your daughter,
mr. Lagana?
She was going out formal tonight. oh.
Can you imagine that?
She wanted me to wait and put
the final okay on her dress.
But i told her what
i thought didn't matter.
Just impress
that football player.
Oh, sometimes the father means
more than the football players.
They come and go, but dad's
around for keeps, hmm?
I hope angela feels that way
about me. Oh, i'll bet she does.
Check the kitchen, will you, baby? Sure.
Now it's debby. Hop, debby! Hop,
debby! Hop, debby! Hop, debby!
Hop, debby! Hop, debby! Hop, debby!
Hop! Hop! She's a young girl, vince.
Don't let her drink so much.
If she keeps it up, she
goes out of here on her ear.
She's got
no claim-Check on me.
When that happens, give me a ring.
I'm a rebound man from way back.
I don't like gutter talk.
I'm sorry.
Sorry? I'm tired of hearing you
sound off and then apologize.
Vince gave you two simple contracts,
and you loused up both of them.
Oh, now wait-
Shut up and listen!
Throwing the chapman girl
out on a county road...
Brought us all the advertising
we didn't want.
Killing mrs. Bannion,
how stupid can you get?
How'd i know
she'd be using the car?
Prisons are bulging with dummies
who wonder how they got there.
I can't afford people who makes
mistakes. I make myself clear?
Vince and i have
things to talk about.
I got an appointment in half
an hour with mrs. Duncan.
She's raised her salary
to 500 a week.
Are we gonna pay it?
You sound like larry.
As long as that letter her husband
left stays in her safe deposit box,
We'll pay what she asks.
Now what about bannion?
Running around in circles.
You sure? Positive. But
if you want insurance,
Uh, we can
take care of him now.
Vince, you worry me.
We've stirred up enough headlines.
The election's too close.
Things are changing
in this country, vince.
A man who can't see that
hasn't got eyes.
Never get the people steamed
up. They start doing things.
Grand juries,
election investigations.
Deportation proceedings.
I don't want to land in the same
ditch with the lucky lucianos.
Slim farrow around?
Not anymore.
Where can i reach him?
Spring rock cemetery.
Six feet under.
Died three days ago.
Bad ticker.
He owe you some money?
I was hoping to get
some information.
then it makes no difference.
Slim wouldn't give information
to his own minister,
If he had a minister.
Well, maybe you can help me.
My wife was murdered
ten days ago.
Someone planted dynamite
in our car.
You bannion, the cop?
That's right.
Was slim mixed up in that? That's
what i'm trying to find out.
Can't help you.
Well, did he have any visitors?
Did he get any phone calls?
All i know about slim is
that he's dead.
Did he have
a set spot to work?
Uh, you know, a place
where he kept his tools?
All the tools are mine.
There's nothing here
for you, mister.
Nothing at all.
Do you mind
if i walk around the yard?
Talk to your men?
I have to mind.
When it comes to my bread
and butter, i stay careful.
It doesn't matter to you that slim might
have been mixed up in a murder, huh?
Sure, it matters.
What can i do about it? I don't
know anything. You're a liar.
You can't insult me, mister. I said i don't
know anything and that's how it stands.
You know, i've been meeting your
kind every day now for ten years.
Scared rabbits
that never see a thing.
You wouldn't stick out your big,
fat neck for anybody, would you?
That's the truth.
But it's my big, fat neck.
So if you're through talking,
i'll get back to work. I ought to-
that won't change my story.
Cops are paid
to take risks, i'm not.
You see, i've got
a wife and kids too.
mr. Bannion?
Mr. Bannion?
Mr. Atkins
might come outside.
He isn't a mean man. Not many
people would hire someone like me.
It's just that he's
frightened. I am too.
But there was a man came to
see slim about two weeks ago.
They had a long talk
out in the yard.
Do you remember
what he looked like?
I'm not much good at
those things. He was-
Well, he was
about your height,
And he
- Well, he wore rather fancy clothes.
You know, colorful. Would you
be able to recognize him again?
Oh, yes. He came right into the
office and asked me where slim was.
How about phone calls?
A few.
A man named larry
left a message once.
Just about the same time.
No last name, huh?
No. He just said to tell
slim to call him at a place-
Oh, it was a peculiar name.
Something like a-A monastery.
Oh, you know,
Where people go off alone
to think. The retreat?
That's it. He said to
call him at the retreat.
I'm very grateful, miss-
Selma parker.
Miss parker.
You've been most helpful.
Well, i'm-I'm glad.
Good luck, mr. Bannion.
Shall we say good night to
daddy and put baby to bed now?
Good night, darling.
Good night, daddy.
Sleep tight, honey.
Thanks, marge.
You bet.
Good night, joyce.
good night.
Say, al,
do me a favor, will you?
Call this number here at exactly
9:30 on the dot, will you?
And ask for larry.
Larry who?
That's what i'm trying to
find out. Larry's all i know.
He's a lead?
I'm hoping.
I got my fingers crossed.
Thanks, al.
Larry who?
You must be kidding, mister. What am
i supposed to do, page larry anybody?
look, keep your hands off.
I won't tell you again.
I'm sorry, mr. Stone.
When i say don't pick up
the dice so fast, i mean it.
I'll roll them again, if
you like, huh? Go ahead.
now stop it!
Honey, that guy's way out of
line. Reg, don't fight. Please.
Sit down, junior. Get out, kid.
Get your boyfriend out of here.
Come on, reg. Let's go home.
Look, you're not scaring me.
Please, reg, come on!
Where you goin', thief?
This isn't your business,
All right, thief, suppose you
tell me what my business is.
Go on, tell me.
You like working
girls over, don't you?
Don't make a mistake, bannion.
Don't play hero with me.
Maybe you're the one that
worked over lucy chapman.
Take it easy, sergeant. I don't
know what you're talking about.
here, baby.
this is for you.
Get yourself something nice.
No hard feelings, huh?
That square it, sergeant?
Get out of here
while you can still walk.
Sure. Sure.
You too.
You going to be all right?
Yeah. Yeah, sure.
thanks, mister.
I'd like to buy you a drink.
With vince stone's money?
I'd choke on it.
Do you get your kicks out of insulting
people? Aren't you vince stone's girl?
The way you ask it, it sounds
like a bunch of dirty words.
Well, that was
the general idea.
Everybody's walking out
on me tonight.
What are you after? I
don't know. You, i think.
Vince stone
chase you after me?
You saw him leave me in the bar
like an old beer or something.
Come on, lets find out.
I mean, if it's you i'm after.
I'm staying at the marland hotel. Okay.
You make up your mind in
a hurry, don't you? Uh-Huh.
Marland hotel.
Say, i like this.
Early nothing.
There's just scotch.
Is that all right? Fine.
How come you sat still
when stone burned that girl?
Well, i'll tell you. The last time
i butted in, vince worked me over.
Is that how it is
being his girl?
Oh, most of the time it's
a lot of fun, expensive fun.
What do you got against
him? I don't like thieves.
Well, you'll never get anywhere
in this town not liking vince.
I'm not trying to get
anywhere. That's obvious.
Well, that's
some improvement.
You know, it's funny.
Sometimes, i feel about vince
the way you looked at him tonight.
He can be a pretty good guy.
And then other times he can be
- But why kick?
You got to take
the bad with the good.
Is the good, good enough?
Clothes, travel, expensive
excitement. What's wrong with that?
Nothing, if you don't care
where his money comes from.
The main thing
is to have the money.
I've been rich and i've been
poor. Believe me, rich is better.
Did you think i was an heiress
or something before i met vince?
- I didn't think about you at all.
- Thank you.
Didn't know you. How could
i? Oh, well, that's better.
You got a refill?
You know larry at the
retreat? Larry who?
Uh, it's larry-
I forget his last name.
He's about my size.
Wears flashy clothes.
I know lots of larrys.
This one was a friend
of vince stone's.
I don't know
all his friends, fortunately.
You know mike lagana,
don't you?
Just to say hello and good-Bye
to. When vince talks business,
I go out and get my legs
waxed or something.
I don't like to hear things. Why
don't you stop the cross-Examination?
I didn't come up here
to talk out of school.
Why did you come up? Well, why don't
we call it research or something.
Or to needle stone, huh?
Oh, well, you're about as
romantic as a pair of handcuffs.
Didn't you ever tell a girl
pretty things?
You know, she's got hair like the
west wind, eyes like limpid pools,
Skin like velvet?
I'll put you in a cab.
Did i say something wrong?
- No.
- I must have broken one of the house rules.
You really want me to go?
I wouldn't touch anything of
vince stone's with a ten-Foot pole.
That's a rotten thing to say.
Everybody winning?
Oh, hello, debby.
Hi, debby.
Hi, miss marsh.
How you doing, vince?
Okay. Where you been?
The gaiety club.
Late show.
Deal me out a while,
huh, boys?
How was the show?
The usual routine, not too bad.
Why didn't you
come straight home?
The way you ran out,
i didn't think you cared.
What do you mean, "ran out"?
It wasn't a stroll.
With elections this close, i can't
afford trouble with a crazy ex-Cop.
He's not so crazy. Got a hot
flash for you. He hates your guts.
How would you know?
I was there, remember? I'm
the girl you left at the bar.
I phoned the retreat. Tierney said
you offered to buy bannion a drink.
Tierney wouldn't know a gag unless
it hit him right in the face.
He said you followed bannion
outside. I went out looking for you.
You made better time getting away
than they make in the olympics.
That's a real pretty kisser.
Isn't it?
I thought maybe you and bannion played
footsie while my back was turned.
You ought to trade tierney in and get
yourself a more reliable stool pigeon.
Maybe i got myself
a better stoolie.
How was the gaiety club?
My arm, vince, my arm!
You like cops, do you?
Don't, vince, please.
Where did you go with him?
My arm, my arm!
I asked you a question. Where? I only
saw him on the street, only in the street!
I suggest we call it a night.
I suggest you shut your mouth.
Where did you go with bannion?
Nowhere, nowhere!
He dropped me off at the
gaiety! The gaiety, the gaiety!
Oh, you pig,
you lying pig!
My face! My face!
I'll fix you
and your pretty face.
Vince, she's scalded.
She had it coming.
Don't just stand there,
get her to a doctor.
We'll have to make a police report.
That's why we're sending you.
Go on, get moving!
I'll try.
I'll try.
Shut the door.
Yes, vince.
How do you know she didn't
tell bannion anything?
Debby isn't your problem
anymore, she's ours.
I want insurance.
But i don't want her found
off any county highway.
I don't want her found at all.
Who is it?
Debby marsh.
Who's with you? I'm
alone. I've been hurt.
Put it out. Please.
Vince threw hot
coffee in my face.
I'm gonna be scarred.
The whole side of my face
will be scarred.
- Where's stone now?
- I don't know.
They made higgins
take me to the doctor.
Higgins the police
After the doctor put on
the bandages, i ran out.
Can i stay with you?
Please, can i stay?
I'll get you a room
on this floor.
Who else was with stone?
Gillen from the city council, george
fuller, vince's lawyer and larry gordon.
I told the doctor i didn't care
what he had to do or about the pain,
Only i didn't want
my face scarred.
Who's larry gordon?
You don't care. You don't
care what happened to me.
You don't care
about anything or anybody.
I was followed when i came here
with you. That's why i got this!
Gil, this is dave bannion.
I'm gonna need another
room on this floor.
Yeah, it's for
a friend of mine.
Yeah. I don't
want it registered.
Yeah. That's right. We don't
want anybody to know she's here.
You'll be safe here.
Want a shot of scotch?
Gordon is the larry
you asked about.
Vince imported him
from chicago a few months ago.
Tomorrow i'll have another
doctor look you over.
I guess a scar isn't so bad,
not if it's only on one side.
I can always
go through life sideways.
Gordon lives
at the wilton apartments.
Is mrs. Davenport at home?
You got the wrong apartment.
I told you it was a-
Get up.
You must be nuts.
Come on, get up.
What about slim farrow?
You're punchy.
Go on. Pick it up.
I won't kill you,
not right away.
You got a wrong steer. If i
knew what you was talking about-
What did slim do for you?
I swear on my mother's-
What did he do for you?
When i let go,
start talking.
If you don't,
i'll finish the job.
He told me to get you,
vince stone.
I hired slim.
What about lucy chapman?
Stone. He was scared duncan told
her things. Was duncan on the take?
Oh, yeah, for years. Why
didn't they shut up mrs. Duncan?
I don't know.
Did she go on the payroll?
I think so. I'm not sure.
What's she got on him?
I don't know.
I just take orders.
You're gonna give me a break, aren't
you, bannion? I told you what i know.
I'm through with you,
but your friends aren't.
I'm gonna spread the word
that you talked.
You're out of business, thief.
we caught up with larry
before he got to the airport.
He was in such a hurry it took
a couple of slugs to stop him.
What's left of him
is on the way to the river.
Debby, what about her?
She doesn't worry me,
but bannion does.
Larry must have talked his head off
or he wouldn't have started running.
When you use second-Raters like gordon,
it's trouble. I've told you that before.
If you had okayed getting rid of
bannion, he wouldn't be a problem now.
And when duncan wanted out, i
asked you to let me handle him.
But no, you thought talking to him
might keep him in line. So what happens?
He knocks himself off. Don't make
me the fall guy. I'm no larry gordon.
The reformers would be delighted
to hear us accusing each other.
All right. We both made mistakes.
The point is correct them.
Bannion on the bottom of the river
with larry and there's no more problem.
Maybe a bigger one.
If he knows anything,
he's put it on paper.
Anything happens to him,
It becomes public property.
The duncan setup all over again.
That's a gamble
we've gotta take.
We don't.
Take something bannion values more
than himself and we keep him quiet.
As soon as you're set,
Have higgins call off the police
guard at the eldridge street house.
Yes, mrs. Duncan?
He's at my door.
What will i do?
He knows i'm at home.
My car is in the garage.
I'll take care of it.
You just stall him.
Yes, i understand.
Oh, mr. Bannion.
I'm so sorry i kept you waiting.
The furniture's the same.
Nothing's been changed.
You haven't started
living higher yet, have you?
What are you talking about?
Your husband was on
lagana's payroll, now you are.
He must have put down all the
facts and figures in writing...
For lagana
to hold still for blackmail.
What did you do with it?
I haven't the faintest idea
what you're talking about.
But if you want to look around,
please go right ahead.
No, it wouldn't be here. You're
much smarter than lucy chapman.
Thank you.
You told lagana about lucy.
You have a horrid mind.
Poor lucy.
You were delighted. You were even happy
when your husband blew his brains out.
We were getting along very well
until the soul struggling began.
Want to know
something ridiculous?
It was after his affair
with lucy chapman...
That he wanted
to turn over a new leaf.
A city is being strangled
by a gang of thieves...
And you protect lagana and stone
for the sake of a soft, plush life.
The coming years are going
to be just fine, mr. Bannion.
There aren't gonna be
any coming years for you.
Not at all.
I don't threaten easily.
If anything happens to you,
the evidence comes out.
That's the way you arranged it,
didn't you, bright lady?
You got it all
put away someplace.
That's how you kept
lagana over a barrel.
But i'm not lagana.
With you dead,
the big heat follows,
The big heat for lagana, for stone
and for all the rest of the lice.
mr. Lagana is an excellent
life insurance agent.
- What's the trouble?
- Why, nothing, officer.
This is police sergeant bannion.
Sorry, sergeant.
We got a call there was trouble.
Sergeant bannion-
Oh, i'm sorry.
It's ex-Sergeant, isn't it?
He'll be leaving
with you, officer.
It's me, bannion.
How about a little
light in here?
I've got to get used to being
seen sometime, i guess.
I've been feeling like something that's been
shut up because nobody wants to look at it.
Aren't you supposed to take
one of these before meals?
Here you are.
Here's some water.
Just sitting here thinking is pretty rough when
you've spent most of your life not thinking.
Eat your soup, huh?
What was your wife like, dave?
Twenty-Seven years old,
Light hair, gray eyes.
That's a police description.
Did she like to cook,
like to be surprised?
What kind of things made
her laugh? That's what-
I'm sorry. You don't wanna talk
about her, certainly not with me.
Not with anyone.
Did you find larry?
Yeah, i found him.
I ran into a brick wall-
Bertha duncan.
The cop's widow?
He left her
a million-Dollar trust fund.
Wrote down everything there was
to know about the syndicate.
Vince must hate her insides.
He never could take
losing or being pressured.
He's got to take it. If she dies,
the letter goes to the newspapers.
You know, i almost
killed her an hour ago.
I should have.
I don't believe you could.
If you had, there wouldn't be much
difference between you and vince stone.
Must be for me. I told them
downstairs i was up here.
Yes, marge?
The relief detail
didn't show up.
I called the police station and they
said they weren't coming anymore.
Keep the door locked 'till al gets
home. I'll be there in an hour.
Keep that for company.
Okay, mac.
Get 'em up high.
Upstairs, mac,
nice and easy now.
Stop, dave.
Hold it, mark. Come on.
Nice going.
This is my brother-In-Law.
And what is this?
Al said to stop everybody.
You're doing fine, mark.
Go back downstairs.
Sorry, mac.
Yeah, it's okay.
Is joyce all right? Sure.
Marge has her inside.
I got the boys over
just in case.
This is my brother-In-Law. Bill
rutherford, schoenstien, mcconnel.
How are you?
I guess civilian life hasn't
slowed mark down so much, huh?
Hasn't slowed him down at all.
When trouble comes, it'll be from
hoodlums who know their business.
I'm afraid they won't be stopped by amateurs
whose hearts happen to be in the right place.
Do we look like the cast
from some maypole dance?
I've been places those creeps wouldn't
go unless they rode in a 50-Ton tank.
I went in on foot with
- The story of how you won a medal of honor, or something.
All right, big wit, but i'm telling you,
anybody who comes through that door...
And touches that kid
is gonna wind up dead.
Harry schoenhopper,
the angry poet.
Seriously, bannion,
we can handle things.
I was never so sure
of anything in my life.
Do you know where
the trouble's coming from?
I'd feel easier
if all of you stayed here.
There's my girl.
Hello, sweetheart.
How are you? Will you
tell me a story, daddy?
Why, sure. Which story, darling?
The three little kittens.
That lost their mittens.
We just heard the precinct
detail was called off.
You're sticking your neck way
out. It's a fine night for it.
Hello, dave.
Aren't you throwing that pension
of yours down into the sewer?
I got my wife's okay.
In fact, gertie used language
i didn't think she knew.
It's the first time in years
i've breathed good, clean air.
Well, you don't have to stay. Al has
some of his army friends upstairs.
If we stick around,
it'll make it official.
Dave, where you going now?
Oh, nowhere special.
Want company?
A report came in this afternoon
about your barging in on mrs. Duncan.
You're not going there again?
I'm vince stone's girl, debby
marsh. May i see you for a moment?
I was just leaving,
but please come in.
Thank you.
Were you in an accident?
I'm sorry.
You have a nice home.
Thank you.
Did mr. Stone send you? No. I've
been thinking about you and me-
How much alike we are.
The mink-Coated girls.
I don't understand you. What
are you here for, miss marsh?
Debby. We should use
first names, bertha.
We're sisters under the mink.
You're not making
any sense, miss marsh.
I'd better call mr. Stone
and have him pick you up.
You're not well.
I never felt better in my life.
It'll burn
for a long time, vince.
It doesn't look bad now,
But in the morning
your face will be like mine.
Look at it.
It isn't pretty, is it?
You'll walk through side streets and
alleys so that people won't stare at you.
Oh, but you're lucky.
It won't be for long.
Bertha duncan is dead. No more
insurance for you and lagana.
The lid's off the
garbage can, and i did it.
I killed mrs. Duncan.
Police emergency. Get an ambulance
at 257 flower street, the penthouse.
Go on, shoot!
Shoot, shoot!
Get up.
Come on, get up.
We'll take your gun, dave.
You can have him too.
There's one charge
against him to start with.
Over there.
We went to the duncan house.
I'm sorry you got there first. I didn't.
Did you call it in? We wanted
to catch up with you first.
Put a cover on lagana, higgins
and every other thief in town.
Duncan left a confession. It'll come
out now. The lice will try to run.
There's no use moving her.
Well, you can close your file
on the bertha duncan killing.
- Dave.
- Yes.
Am i going to die?
If i said you'd live another
100 years, you'd call me a liar.
I don't want to die.
I must look awful.
Vince shouldn't
have ruined my looks.
It was a rotten thing to do.
Dave, i'm going to die.
No, debby, no.
Remember how angry you got...
When i asked you
about your wife?
I wasn't angry.
You and katie would
have gotten along fine.
What was she like?
A real irish blow-Top,
but she always got over it fast.
She used to raise the roof with me for
missing dinner or leaving the bathroom a mess,
But a few minutes later, she'd come
in with a drink in her hand for me...
Just as though
nothing had happened.
You know, kate,
she was a sampler.
She'd take sips of my drink
and puffs on my cigarette.
Sometimes she used to
taste the food off my plate.
We got a big kick out of that.
I like her.
I like her a lot.
Sometimes when i came home from work,
she'd have the baby dressed up...
Like a little princess.
One of the most important parts
of the day was when i came in...
And saw her looking like something
just stepped down off a birthday cake.
I guess-
I guess it's that way
with most families.
How about some coffee, hugo?
Coming right up, sarge.
Homicide, bannion.
Got it.
We have a hit-And-Run
over on south street.
Keep the coffee hot, hugo.
Okay, sir.