The Damned Don't Cry (1950) Movie Script

Well, they finally got him.
Had to happen sooner or later.
He just got it sooner.
- I'll phone the sergeant.
- Right.
"The body of the notorious gambler
and racketeer...
"was found early this morning
behind a sand dune...
"three miles from the famed desert resort.
"As yet, the authorities
have issued no statements...
"concerning their line of investigation...
"but it is felt
that new disclosures are imminent. "
Hey, Red, when do we get a look inside?
Later. We're gonna have a 25-cent tour.
Hi, Bonnie.
Is it true he's got a radar system in there?
- Is that all?
- Yes, sir.
The coroner says he got it sometime
between 11:00 and 12:00, night before last.
That checks.
According to his boy,
he left here at about 10:30.
- Know where he went?
- No.
At least that's what he says.
Look over this stuff.
- What's all this?
- Movies.
- I know that. Who is in them?
- Friends.
- Got a machine you can run this stuff?
- Yes, sir.
Get it ready.
Boy, he could really pick them,
couldn't he?
Hey, that's that Forbes woman, isn't it?
- Forbes?
- That rich oil heiress from back East.
She leased the Braddock house
this winter.
What would she be doing
with a guy like him?
Maybe we ought to ask her,
because, brother, that's who it is...
Mrs. Lorna Hansen Forbes.
That's enough.
When was the last time
you saw Mrs. Forbes?
Night before last.
I left the house around 6:30
and didn't return until midnight.
All her clothes, her luggage,
they were all here.
But she was gone.
Have you any idea who she was with
that night?
Hey, Sheriff, take a look.
- I suppose you don't know what this is.
- No.
No, I don't.
Well, I'll tell you.
It's blood.
"Widow of Wyoming oil magnate,
Denver socialite, Texas heiress."
Can't we get together on this?
Hand me those clips.
These only go back two years.
Where's the rest of them?
That's all there is.
Before then, nothing but a blank.
Just popped up one day
wearing a mink coat full of dough.
Well, where did it come from?
Where did she come from?
Ten days have passed
and the police still have no clue...
as to the whereabouts
of the fabulous woman...
who chose to call herself
Lorna Hansen Forbes.
A nationwide search
has left the darling of caf society...
completely shrouded in a veil of mystery.
Who is she? Where is she?
Is she dead, or is she alive?
The questions continue to pile up.
Where did she come from?
What was her source of income?
Did she kill the well-known racketeer...
whose bloodstains were found
in her home in Desert Springs?
Or is she herself the victim
of some kind of gang war?
How and why the obviously well-bred
and cultured society beauty...
could be even remotely associated
with members of the underworld...
is a question which baffles the authorities.
Hello, Dad.
It's me. Ethel.
Who is it, Jim?
Hello, Mom.
It's so good to see you. Sit down.
Jim, put some coffee on.
- Don't bother, Mom.
- It's no bother.
You look fine, Ethel, real fine.
Don't she, Jim?
She was too good to stay with us before.
Why did she have to come back?
It's all right, Mom. I won't leave again.
- I haven't any place else to go.
- Yeah, that's what I thought.
She's in some sort of trouble.
Where did you get the money
for all them clothes?
The money you tried to send us.
The money you couldn't tell us about.
Come, Ethel. You are tired.
Mom, has anyone been here
looking for me?
- Gee, it's keen, ain't it, Mom?
- Yeah.
Say, can I get it?
I'll speak to your dad about it.
Maybe next Christmas, huh?
That's what you and Pop said
last Christmas.
Here you are, Ethel.
That'll be 69 cents.
Mighty nice bike there.
One of the best we've ever stocked.
Yes, it is. It's pretty.
But I'm afraid we can't afford it now.
I could probably let you have it
at a good price...
seeing it's the last one of that size we got.
Please, Mom.
I'd take awful good care of it.
Honest, I would.
I kind of hate to see you pass up a bargain.
It may be some time
before we get any more.
Roy would shoot me
if I came home with this.
I'll help pay for it.
If I had a bike,
I could get myself a paper route.
There you are.
We'll think about it. Come on, Son.
Don't think too long.
It may not be here tomorrow.
If we lose it, we just have to lose it,
that's all.
We can't always have what we want.
Can we, Tommy?
I guess not.
Come on.
- Good day.
- Bye.
- Thanks, Ed.
- See you in the morning, Roy.
Hi, Pop.
How do you like it?
Hey, take it easy.
Where is she?
She's taking the clothes off the line.
She'll be in, in a minute.
- Have a nice day, Roy?
- My days are all the same.
- Whose bike is that, Tommy's riding on?
- I don't exactly know.
Why don't you get washed up?
Supper will be ready in a little while.
Hello, Roy. Just get in?
- Did you buy Tommy that bike?
- Yeah. Ain't it a beauty?
I never saw him have so much fun.
- He hasn't been off it since we got home.
- Well, that's great.
It was a bargain, Roy.
It would've been crazy to pass it up.
- Besides, I only had to pay $10.
- $10? For a new bike?
- Well, the rest next month.
- How much is the rest?
Roy, practically all the kids
in the neighborhood have bikes...
I don't care if they have zeppelins.
Always what somebody else has,
we gotta have, too...
whether we can afford it or not.
How much was it?
It takes every cent I earn now
just to keep us going...
without wasting it on a silly bike.
- It's not silly. It's important.
- What's important about it?
Is it more important than my insurance?
Yes. I don't care about your insurance.
You hear that? She don't care.
Well, I do. That bike's going back.
Roy, you can't take it away from him now.
I'll go without something myself.
- That coat you promised me.
- What's that got to do with it?
If anything happens to me,
I want that kid taken care of.
Then take care of him now, why don't you?
He's just a kid.
He don't know about insurance.
That's in the future. He can't see that far.
And I don't want him to see that far.
Don't make it
so that all he's got to look forward to...
is something happening to you.
What's she complaining about now?
Same old thing. I don't do enough for her.
You'll never do enough for her.
I'm beginning to think you're right.
Tommy! Come here!
You're not gonna do it.
Come back here
and bring that bicycle back!
I gotta go now.
Okay, you take it away from him.
But that's the last thing
you'll ever take away from him.
I'm not gonna stand by
and watch him bury his hopes one by one.
You're not gonna do that to him.
He's gonna have a bike
if I have to go out and steal it.
Tommy, look out!
Ethel, where are you going?
I'm leaving you, Roy.
You can't hold him responsible
for what happened.
It was God's will.
A 6-year-old boy.
It's not for us to question.
I don't believe that.
- I don't believe God works that way.
- Then you do blame me.
- That's why you're leaving.
- No.
I'm leaving because I haven't anything
to hold me here anymore.
I would have left a long time ago
if it hadn't been for Tommy.
Why don't you think it over, Ethel?
Things will look better in the morning.
How many mornings
have you lived, Mom?
And how many of those mornings
have things looked better?
But you got to keep hoping, keep trying.
That's what I've been doing.
That's all I been living on.
Don't you see, Mom?
I'm not a kid any longer.
I've gotta do something about it now,
while I've still got a chance.
But there's still a chance here.
It can work out. We can start over.
Don't you understand anything about me?
How can we start over?
We can. We can plan it different.
Have another kid.
- What have we got to give another kid?
- Whatever you want.
I'll show you. I promise you.
That's what you said
when we were married.
It's what you said when Tommy was born.
It's what you said every year since.
But it's still the same.
- With you, it'll always be the same.
- I've done the best I could.
Well, it ain't good enough.
Let her go. She'll be back.
She'll find out what it's like.
Whatever it's like, it'll be better than this.
I want something more
than what I've had out of life.
And I'm gonna get it.
My dear young woman, you can't type,
you don't know shorthand...
you've never operated a Comptometer...
and I suspect you've never even seen
a billing machine.
Just what kind of work
have you been doing?
Housework, mostly.
Why didn't you say so?
If you girls would only speak up...
instead of making me
go through all this shadow boxing.
Now, I have a very good job open
as a personal maid.
No, I don't want that.
Isn't there something else?
Something better?
Well, there's the Republican
presidential nomination.
Would that suit you?
Now see here, my dear,
there's quite a gap...
between what you want
and what you're going to get.
You have no equipment, no training.
If you want something better,
go to school, learn a trade.
- I can't wait that long.
- You can't?
Well, go sit in the park,
take a shower, anything.
But make up your mind, then come back.
A brace of La Reina's, please.
Right up there behind you,
on the top shelf.
- You're new here, aren't you?
- Yes, the other girl's on her vacation.
That's too bad.
This is quite an improvement.
- Thanks.
- Why? For telling the truth?
That's my specialty.
I'm upstairs, sixth floor,
with Fit-Rite Frocks.
You know, dresses, gowns.
If I can get you a discount on anything,
let me know.
Wally Talbot's the name.
Thanks, Mr. Talbot.
I could sure use a couple of new dresses.
How late do they keep you
penned up here?
I may run out of these.
If you run out, I'll be here.
I'll run out.
Now, here's a nice piece
of merchandise, boys.
Comes in beige, chartreuse,
magenta, and black. Number 9127.
What's the exchange?
We don't give out the phone numbers
till after the customer signs the order.
- Since when?
- It's a new policy in the house.
Come on, what do you say?
I say Sandra's putting on a little weight.
In the wrong places.
Honestly, Mr. Riley, the things you say.
Try 426. And lay off of them pastries.
Well, gentlemen,
what do you think of our new fall line?
Well, it's not bad, Barney, but...
Ever see a peplum like that, Mr. Maggio?
Not in Topeka.
It'll be great in Topeka.
But in St. Paul, it would start
a wave of double pneumonia.
Miss Whitehead, move out a little.
Let them see the hemline.
Who cares about the hemline
when you got a neckline like that?
Come on back, honey.
Come on. Is the customer always right,
or isn't he?
You don't write on those order pads,
she's gonna forget you're a customer.
What do you want,
an annuity for life on these orders?
Why not? I got three kids. Okay, honey.
It's number 836. Better put it down
before you forget it.
- Don't worry. This number I won't forget.
- I'll be right back.
- Sandra?
- Yes, Mr. Riley.
You're doing great. We wrap up this order
and tonight we celebrate.
- Could I help you?
- No, thanks. I can manage.
First, we'll surround a juicy steak.
I know a place where they come thick.
The place you came from, they're all thick.
Don't pay attention to her. Our blood
types are antagonistic. See you at 7:00.
7:00, you'll be seeing your three kids.
- Who asked you?
- Mr. Riley of St. Paul.
Then give your advice to him.
And Mr. Maggio of Topeka asked Ethel.
- Asked me what?
- He asked you to have dinner with him.
- But he didn't.
- It's all the same. He asked the boss.
And the boss answered for you.
- Why?
- Tell her, flap-jaw.
The customer's always right, honey.
- Do I have to go with him?
- You missed the point.
They're out-of-town buyers.
They wanna keep on buying.
As long as it's from us,
we want to help them.
They wrestle with you a little.
It's no worse than the subway.
In fact, it's a lot better.
- How's your dice game?
- My dice game?
We're going to Grady's for dinner...
and after that, we'll have
a friendly little game in the backroom.
Sandra, I don't think I'd better go.
Listen, hon,
you gotta stop being antisocial.
All this living by yourself,
that's for channel swimmers.
Now just hang on to me tonight...
and you'll have a great time,
and at retail prices.
- Good night.
- Enjoy yourself, honey?
I feel like something that's been on sale
in a bargain basement.
- I'm one big bruise from here to here.
- Ain't it rugged?
But you'll get used to it.
- Well, good night.
- Good night.
Hey, wait a minute!
I almost forgot.
$20? What's this for?
Your cut.
Whenever we steer a couple of guys
into Grady's back room...
he gives us a bonus.
We split. 50-50.
It helps, don't it?
Say, how about us working as a team?
I think I'd better learn one job at a time.
Honey, it's all the same job.
It's still modeling.
Only it pays better at night.
What else have we got to sell
but a face and a figure?
And anybody who can make a peplum
move like you don't need anything else.
Okay, handsome, take me home.
Madam, do you think you know
what home looks like?
Looks a lot better than this dump.
There you are.
- Hey, wait a minute. What is this?
- Your cut of last night.
Those two suckers from Nebraska.
What did you do, shave it off with a razor?
No, I did what you do.
Split it down the middle.
Don't give me that.
I saw Grady slip you $100.
Since when is $20 right down the middle?
Since I began using your arithmetic book.
The night we started you gave me $20.
I learned from Grady it should've been $50.
This just straightens out the bookkeeping.
It does more than that.
It closes the books.
I'm getting myself a new partner.
You may as well get yourself
a couple of other new items...
if you'll excuse the expression.
I'll excuse it. I'll show you
how far you can get without me.
And wait till you see
what I got lined up for tonight!
But I'd take my mother
before I'd take you!
Oh, shut up.
May I have the next waltz?
Excuse me.
What do you get headaches from?
I beg your pardon?
I said, what do you get headaches from?
The heat, I guess.
It'll disappear in a minute.
- Is there anything I can do for you?
- Yeah, you can give me a cigarette.
Of course.
- Thank you.
- Don't you smoke?
I'm trying to limit myself
to half a pack a day.
So what do you save? A dime.
You'll never get rich that way.
No, but I might get a lot healthier.
There's room for improvement.
CPAs never get enough exercise.
What's that?
- Exercise?
- No, I mean that other word.
CPA. Certified public accountant.
I'm with Tuttle and Wagner.
We're tax consultants.
- We take care of your auditing.
- My what?
Your books and records.
I mean, the firm's.
Why haven't I seen you
around here before?
I only come over about once a month.
Usually on a Saturday afternoon.
I'm usually off Saturdays.
So there you are. It must be fate.
Fate. F-A-T-E.
I'm afraid I really have to get back to work.
What if you don't?
Well, the Secretary of the Treasury
won't like it, neither will your boss.
It's my job to keep them both happy.
You do all that with nothing but this?
- It takes a little of this, too.
- I'll bet.
How much of that is it gonna take today?
I'll be here till 9:00, 10:00.
When do you eat?
Whenever I finish.
That's what's giving you those headaches.
Skip a meal, you gotta take an aspirin.
Too many aspirins, you got an ulcer.
First thing you know,
you gotta have an operation.
You can't work, you're flat on your back,
your company goes to pot.
Then where are you? Dead.
I never thought of it quite that way.
Think of it.
Well, I guess I better get dressed.
Well, too bad we won't see you
at Grady's tonight.
You'll see me.
Check your hat, sir?
- Good evening, Miss Whitehead.
- Good evening.
- Four, as usual?
- No, just two tonight.
Very well. This way, please.
Reading spoils my appetite, George.
Just bring me the squab with wild rice,
asparagus with hollandaise...
a small mixed-green salad
with a touch of garlic...
cherries jubilee, and a double martini.
And you, sir?
I'll have a chicken salad sandwich.
And a cup of coffee.
Yes, sir.
I thought you were hungry.
Reading has spoiled my appetite, too.
Are you sick or something?
Just embarrassed.
I'm afraid I'm a bit short of funds.
That's all right. They'll take your check.
I don't think you understand,
Miss Whitehead.
How much do you think
an accountant earns?
- I don't know.
- Less than that.
Half a day's salary.
I earn exactly $60 a week.
You could earn more than that
bouncing drunks out of here.
I like chicken salad sandwiches.
Really, I do.
- Hello, folks.
- Hi, Grady.
- How are you this evening, Ethel?
- Fine.
Meet a friend of mine, Martin Blackford
of the Treasury Department.
- How do you, sir?
- How do you?
We don't get many representatives
of the Treasury Department here.
I'm afraid Miss Whitehead
is a little confused.
My only contact with the Treasury
is when I make a mistake.
- You make many of them?
- Certainly not.
That's what the clients pay him for.
He's a CPA.
Is that so?
Whatever he is.
Any friend of yours is a friend of mine.
That means certified public accountant.
Sure. CPA.
Say, after you finish your dinner...
you and Mr. Blackford
might like to drop into the back room.
No, he couldn't possibly.
He's in the middle of a terrific conference.
He barely has time for a sandwich.
- Just a friendly little game.
- But he's gotta rush right back.
I tell him, what's the point
of having a brain from here to here...
and making a pile of money that high...
if you can't take time off
to keep from starving.
- Well, some other time.
- Some other time.
Say, Mr. Blackford, I don't suppose
you could stop by my office...
on your way out just for a second.
- What about?
- Personal problem.
I made one of those little mistakes
with the Treasury.
This morning they contacted me, personal.
I sure could use a little
professional advice, if you could spare it.
Well, time is money,
but I think we can spare it, huh, Marty?
I don't see why not.
After all,
friends of yours are friends of mine.
- We'll be glad to.
- Good.
Grady, send George back.
We want to change the order.
Now, this letter explains...
that due to the high risk of confiscation
of your gaming equipment...
you have accordingly taken
accelerated depreciation on it.
When did I do that?
Last March.
- This letter explains why you did it.
- I see.
Let me suggest, however...
that you apply for permission
from the Treasury Department...
to change your system
from an accrual to a cash basis.
That way, you'd undoubtedly realize...
a savings of several thousand
dollars a year.
- No kid?
- No kid.
- As simple as that, huh?
- lf you know how.
Blackford, I gotta hand it to you.
You sound like a guy
who knows his racket.
What do I owe you?
Why, nothing. I was glad to do it.
Now, listen, I'm no brain-picker.
When a guy does a job for me, I pay.
Well, when I do a friend a favor,
I don't charge.
Well, at least I can take care
of the dinner check.
Say, Marty...
now that you got
all this stuff straightened out...
who's gonna keep it that way?
Mr. Grady's accountant
ought to be able to handle it.
He hasn't done so good up to now.
What's the chance of you taking it over?
- No, I don't think...
- Say, that's an idea, Blackford.
I know you're a busy man,
but if there's a possibility...
No, I'm afraid I couldn't.
Marty, you can't just walk out
and leave him in the lurch.
I don't think Mr. Grady
spends much time in the lurch.
Maybe you could do it in your spare time.
A fellow like you, how long would it take?
Two or three nights a week, I'll bet.
He's right, Marty.
I know you don't need the money.
But you'd be doing me a favor.
Grady's an old friend of mine.
I'm sure he'd make it worth your while.
Wouldn't you, Grady?
Sure, I would.
Well, whatever's reasonable.
For two nights a week, I'll pay you
what I pay my full-time guy. $50.
- Okay, I'll up it $25.
- Make it $100 and you got a deal.
So it's a deal. Shake.
Yes, this is Grady.
- See you later.
- Right.
Yeah, we did okay tonight.
A little over $9,700.
No, Malloy hasn't checked in yet.
Little early.
I'll take it on one condition.
That you share it with me.
- The fee, I mean.
- I wouldn't think of it.
You mean like a percentage?
Why not? You could use the money
as well as I could.
I wouldn't feel right otherwise.
Well, I wouldn't want you to do anything
you felt was wrong.
Then it's settled.
After all, you're responsible for this.
I wouldn't have had the nerve.
You don't need it.
I've got enough for both of us.
- Well, hello.
- Hello.
- Thought you were working tonight.
- I am.
Instead of an aspirin,
I thought I'd try a steak for a change.
Now you're getting smart.
Sit down, pour yourself a drink.
I'll be with you in a second.
I was hoping
you'd have dinner with me tonight.
I'm sorry, Marty.
But I have a date.
Out-of-town buyer?
- What about tomorrow?
- Tomorrow night, I'm busy.
Grady got me a new account.
Another one? How wonderful.
That makes four of them.
If you're not careful, Marty,
you're gonna wind up a rich man.
Just makes it more difficult to see you.
Here, zip me up, will you?
Couldn't you break the date for tonight?
I'd love to, Marty, but it's impossible.
He's a big chain-store buyer,
one of our most important customers.
- It's been such a long time.
- Whose fault is that?
If you'd quit that stupid job
at Tuttle and Wagner...
we'd have a chance to see each other
once in a while.
It's not as easy as that.
I've been there for 12 years.
It's like home to me.
Home? How do you know
they won't throw you out on your pants...
- when you get so old you can't count.
- They don't operate that way.
If a man does his job,
he can stay there for good.
Marty, you're future lies
with Grady and the boys.
If you have any doubts,
check your bankbook.
I appreciate the money...
but I just wish
I was getting it some other way.
I wish I never had to see
another out-of-town buyer.
- Hi, Grady.
- Hi, Ethel.
Sorry I have to rush right off.
This ain't no social call.
Just came to pick up Marty.
- We're going to a meeting.
- But I'm due back at Malloy's tonight.
Malloy will be there, too.
- What kind of a meeting?
- Business. Big business.
Like an invitation to the Governor's
mansion from the Guv himself.
- Coming?
- Sure he is.
If you like, I'll come along, too.
Now wait a minute.
George didn't tell me to bring you.
This George,
did he tell you not to bring me?
Why should he?
He doesn't even know you're alive.
Okay, let's prove to him I am.
But what about your date?
Where your interests are concerned,
my date can go to the movies.
George wants to see Marty, not you.
All right, let's leave it up to Marty.
If he wants me to go along, fine. If not...
I'd like to have her along, Grady.
That's what I figured.
- Hi, Robert.
- Good evening, sir.
Where's Mr. Castleman?
He's in the library
with the other gentlemen.
- Tell him we're here.
- Yes, sir.
That's what they call an Etruscan.
- A what?
- An Etruscan.
It comes from over there in Italy.
It refers to an early art period.
Etruria was an ancient country
with a highly-developed civilization...
Iocated in part
of what is now known as Italy.
That's what I said.
George has got stuff
from all over the world.
This is Marty Blackford.
George Castleman.
I've heard a lot about you, Mr. Blackford.
- I hope it's been favorable.
- lf it weren't, you wouldn't be here.
This is Miss Whitehead.
- How do you do?
- How do you do?
I don't believe I've heard anything
about you, Miss Whitehead.
Ethel is Marty's friend.
He don't go anywhere without her.
I wonder if Marty's friend
would release him long enough...
for a short business session.
I don't mind, as long as it's short
and he's in good company.
Would you take Mr. Blackford
into the library...
and introduce him to the gentlemen there?
Sure thing.
I must say, I admire
your choice of friends, Miss Whitehead.
I like men with brains.
It's a quality that isn't offensive
in women, either.
Will you come this way, please?
Is this where you entertain your guests?
When I have guests.
- Could I get you a drink?
- No, thanks.
I hope you'll be able amuse yourself
while Mr. Blackford and I are in the library.
- I'll try and find something.
- I wish I knew what to suggest.
You might invite me into the library.
There's one thing I never do
in the presence of women:
discuss business.
That should leave you plenty of room
for other interests.
I have no other interests.
Here's George.
You met everyone?
Quite a while ago, some of them.
I'm handling their books.
What you mean is,
you've been handling George's books.
Have you met Nick Prenta?
He's our West Coast man.
Nick, this is Martin Blackford.
- You're the bookkeeper?
- Mr. Blackford's the accountant.
What's the difference?
You'll find out,
especially with that set of books you keep.
All right, boys, find a seat.
Over here, Mr. Blackford.
Come on, Marty.
Sit down, Nick.
I had a very special reason for having you
here tonight to meet Mr. Blackford.
As you know, we've expanded
much faster in the past few years...
than we ever expected.
But most of you are still running
your territories like a country store.
And your accounts show it.
I told you at the conference in Hot Springs.
Particularly you, Nick. I told you...
I'm always touched
when you single me out, George.
Try to be less touched and more attentive.
I told you then that if we adopted
regular, streamlined business methods...
we could function as profitably...
and with as little interference,
as any nationally-known organization.
I also told you that the cheap,
front page, hoodlum tactics...
of the '20s and '30s could finish us.
Just as they finished
Lepke, Schultz, and Capone.
Most of you seem to have understood this.
- But I haven't. Is that what you mean?
- That's exactly what I mean.
I handed you two
of the biggest racetracks in the country...
the bookie franchise,
and the slot machine concession...
the biggest gambling house in the West.
Enough to satisfy anyone.
The way I got it figured, a guy
who's satisfied is a guy standing still.
You're not standing still.
You're moving backwards.
Don't look that way from where I sit.
It's where I sit that counts.
From where I sit, I don't like what I see.
I don't like the way your returns
have been falling off...
and your expenses going up.
You know how it is, George.
Sometimes, a customer
has a lucky streak at the wheel.
Sometimes, the fix is big.
The boys have been asking
for a bigger cut lately.
- And you've paid them?
- What else?
Then why string microphones
and plant that bug in your house?
You know something?
I planted one on them.
What are you worried about?
Everything's under control.
Sure. Perfect control.
That's why those cheap hoods
took a potshot at you.
- They'll be taken care of.
- You'll take care of nobody!
That stuff is out. You're not running
a shooting gallery out there.
If you've got a beef, settle it over a table.
I don't sit down at any table
with those hopped-up hoods.
Now, you listen to me,
you stupid showoff.
You're gonna do as you're told.
Get the spotlight off us...
stop getting on the front pages
with every thrill-happy dame in town...
and stop shooting off your big mouth.
This is a legitimate business
we're operating...
not a three-ring circus.
In that connection, I'm setting up
a central overall accounting system...
that will enable us, at any given moment...
to get a clear picture
of our financial operations.
Are you listening, Mr. Blackford?
Yes, of course, Mr. Castleman.
Fine, because this concerns you.
Good evening.
He's a nice-looking boy, isn't he?
He'll be 14 next October.
In April, he won the ribbon
for Cadet of the Month.
I frightened you, didn't I?
A little.
I'm waiting for a friend.
He's in a meeting with Mr. Castleman.
I'm Mrs. Castleman.
How do you do? I'm Ethel Whitehead.
A pretty girl like you? Miss?
He's very handsome, isn't he?
Yes, he is.
A son can be such a comfort.
- When was it painted?
- Last April, when he won the ribbon.
I hope we haven't kept you
waiting too long, Miss Whitehead.
- Not at all.
- Good.
I've asked Grady to stay over.
I'm afraid I must send you home in my car.
Do you mind?
I'm not afraid of anything, Mr. Castleman.
Unless it's a bad driver.
Don't worry. My chauffeur will be careful.
He knows he's carrying valuable cargo.
Good night.
What happened in the library?
They offered me a job.
Secretary of the treasury.
Grady and the others,
they're just outposts in an empire.
They have everything in the world,
except a good bookkeeping system.
And they want you to give it to them?
Castleman's going to open up
a suite of offices, my name on the door.
- I'm to run the whole show.
- Marty, that's wonderful.
But it's more than just
a bookkeeping office.
It's a front.
A front for the biggest wire service
in the country.
I knew it. I knew you'd come through.
You haven't heard a word I've said.
It's to be a wire service,
for bookmaking, betting.
Wires to every racetrack
and sports arena in the country.
- All right, so what?
- It's illegal. It's against the law.
As long as there's a wire service,
and I know about it...
I'm an accessory before the fact.
They throw you
in the penitentiary for that.
What did you tell Castleman?
Nothing. He didn't give me a chance.
Just told me what I was to do
and that was it.
- What are you gonna do?
- I'm gonna get out. Fast.
Are you crazy? You can't do that now.
I won't let you.
You want me to be like them? A criminal?
You bet I want you to be like them. Smart.
Nothing's going to happen to you.
Castleman won't let it.
You don't understand.
This is a syndicate of organized crime.
Not just betting, gambling,
but narcotics, prostitution.
Every kind of vice and corruption
you can think of.
I don't want to think about it,
and you don't have to.
You're gonna be an accountant,
just like you've always been.
There is such a thing as self-respect.
Don't talk to me about self-respect.
That's what you tell yourself you got
when you got nothing else.
What self-respect is there, living on aspirin
tablets and chicken salad sandwiches?
Look, Marty...
the only thing that counts
is that stuff you take to the bank.
That filthy buck that everybody sneers at
but slugs to get.
I know how you feel. You're a nice guy.
But the world isn't for nice guys.
You gotta kick and punch
and belt your way up.
'Cause nobody's gonna give you a lift.
You've gotta do it yourself.
'Cause nobody cares about us
except ourselves.
It can't be right. It can't ever be right.
I'm not saying it is.
But if you don't do it, what happens?
I go back to Fit-Rite Frocks
and wait for the out-of-town buyers.
Is that what you want?
You know it isn't.
Then there's no other way. Not for us.
If I could be sure it was for us...
Marty, everything I've ever done
was for us.
Miss Whitehead to see Mr. Castleman.
Mr. Castleman says
he doesn't know any Miss Whitehead.
Tell him he has a bad memory.
I was at his house last night.
You don't trust anybody, do you?
Grady told me
Blackford didn't go anywhere without you.
But he didn't tell me
you went anywhere without Blackford.
Grady doesn't know as much as he thinks.
I had a talk with Martin last night.
The office idea is okay.
He's agreed to come in.
Was there any question about it?
Sure. A big question.
Martin has an important position
with a very old and reliable firm.
He'd be giving up quite a lot
to come in with you.
"Martin Blackford, 34 years old.
"Started work with Tuttle and Wagner
at $40 a week.
"After 12 years, raised himself $20.
"Lives with his mother in a cheap suburb,
drives a broken-down jalopy...
"and until hired by Grady never owned
more than two suits of clothes at a time."
Well, there are other things. The terms.
And there's a little matter of protection.
Protection? From whom?
Why, from whoever
you need protection from.
Or is running a bookie joint legal
these days?
My dear Miss Whitehead,
operating a wire service...
does involve a certain amount
of cooperation from the authorities...
and an even greater amount
from the public.
But I never initiate a project
until I'm assured of that cooperation.
As for the terms, I think Mr. Blackford
can safely leave those to me.
I didn't mean
you were gonna give him a fast shuffle.
It's just that he hasn't had much
experience at this kind of thing.
You seem a little new at it yourself.
Here. Sit down.
What did you really
come to see me about?
- Well...
- Excuse me.
What kind of perfume are you using?
I suppose it is, in some quarters.
Now, you were about to say?
I was about to say it was a pleasure
being associated with a gentleman.
But I was wrong on both counts.
What do I have to do to get out of here?
You have to get permission from me.
You enjoy making a person
look like two cents, don't you?
Well, get this straight. I don't like
being made to look like two cents.
Especially by somebody who was
small change himself not so long ago.
What do you mean by that?
I mean Joe Caveny who changed his name
to George Castleman.
You and your Etruscan flowerpots.
You and your sensitive nose.
Since when did Joe Caveny
know anything about perfume?
Since you were a loud-mouthed hoodlum
hijacking beer trucks in Jersey?
Running rum from Cuba?
Plugging guys for $10?
I can find out things, too.
You didn't waste any time, did you?
I don't have any time to waste.
I made the mistake last night.
I should have invited you into the library.
I admire a woman with brains.
But a woman with brains and spirit
excites me.
A woman like that
reminds me of Joe Caveny.
What is it you want?
I want what Joe Caveny wanted,
and what George Castleman has.
I think you're quite capable
of getting it, too.
There must be a place
in my organization for someone like you.
I already have a place in your organization.
I had a somewhat
more prominent place in mind.
Although there's a lot you'd have to learn.
I could learn it.
For example, lesson number one:
It's an Etruscan vase, not a flowerpot.
To be able to own one is one thing.
To appreciate it, another.
Lesson number two:
Cheap perfume is cheap perfume,
no matter who tells you...
Caveny or Castleman.
Lesson number three:
A well-dressed woman
never wears anything...
that deflects a man's attention
from her face.
Now that I see it...
it's a very handsome face.
Just what kind of a place
in your organization did you have in mind?
It's too soon to judge yet.
We'll have to see in which direction
your capabilities lie.
You're asking for trouble, aren't you?
I never got anything yet worthwhile
without trouble.
Only don't take this
for anything more than it's worth.
It might be worth more than you think.
- Which one is Mr. Blackford?
- Right over here.
Here you are, Marty. Another one.
- That's a beaut.
- I wonder who that's from.
Marty, if this doesn't stop soon...
you're gonna spend
your first year's take in tips alone.
Listen to this everyone:
"All best wishes to the big bookkeeper
from the little bookies."
Marty, you've come a long way, fast.
I've got a high-powered motor.
- Hello, George.
- Grady, Martin.
Mr. Castleman.
- Congratulations. It looks splendid.
- Thank you, sir.
- Good evening, Miss Whitehead.
- Good evening.
I hope you won't think
I've spent too much.
You never know until you start buying
how things run up.
Typewriters, adding machines,
- Makes me nervous just to think of it.
- Then why think about it?
Whatever it costs to make our business
efficient, we'll spend cheerfully.
If you want to see something
that really is efficient, this way.
Here we are.
The thing I like about the setup is...
the clientele comes in
the regular reception room.
And when they come through there
and open those doors, bank night.
Pretty neat, ain't it?
Who selected that?
Me. I furnished the whole room myself.
Well, put a calendar on it
and hang it in your living room.
Take it down.
What do you think of it?
- I think you're quite right...
- No, I mean the room.
- For what it's intended, I'm sure it's fine.
- Good.
Suppose we unveil your inner sanctum.
Now this is in good taste.
I detect no traces whatever
of the Grady influence here.
Miss Whitehead decorated this room.
My compliments, Miss Whitehead.
It's important the impression one makes.
Important in the commercial sense.
Martin, tomorrow morning...
I want you to begin a detailed analysis
of our West Coast branch.
That's Mr. Prenta's territory, isn't it?
That seems to be the way he regards it.
It's possible he considers his own pocket
one of the syndicate's operating costs.
However, we'll know more
after Grady's been out there a while.
- He's leaving tomorrow.
- I am?
- Your health hasn't been good lately.
- I never felt better in my life.
You'll develop a cough
by the time you get there.
I spoke to Prenta long distance and
told him your doctor ordered you west...
perhaps for a year.
But, George, a year in all that sun?
You're not going to have
very much time for the sun.
You'll be busy
keeping your eyes and ears open.
Well, Marty, the best of luck to you.
And I'll be waiting for that report.
Now, let's have a drink with the boys.
- Ethel.
- Yes?
May I speak to you for a moment, please?
Will you excuse me, please?
Now that I have a private office,
there's something private I'd like to say.
What's this?
When I was a kid
they used to call it an engagement ring.
I've been wanting to say it a long time.
This just makes it official.
I can't.
You mean you can't now?
I mean I can't ever.
But why?
I always thought we...
As soon as we got what we wanted,
you and l...
You don't need me anymore.
You're on your way, you're a success.
Go find yourself another girl,
a girl as nice as you are.
I don't want another girl. I want you.
- I'm no good for you.
- I never said you were.
It's too late for that.
I want you to marry me.
I'm sorry, Marty.
You're sorry?
What kind of an answer is that?
Why did you do this to me?
This office, this wire room,
the whole stinking business.
Did you think I wanted it?
I hate it. I hate every part of it.
I only did it because of you. I did it for you.
I thought it was the only way
I could have you.
- You had no right to think that.
- You made me think it.
I didn't make you do anything.
You didn't have to take all this.
If you don't want it, you can still leave.
Nobody's holding you,
nobody's twisting your arm.
You couldn't have
done this to me deliberately.
You couldn't have planned it this way.
There's somebody else, isn't there?
That's it, isn't it? Tell me.
He's promised me the world, Marty,
and I've got to have it.
This world he promised...
does it include this?
I didn't ask. I'm not even sure it matters.
Maybe someday it will.
But right now, all I can think of
are the years I've wasted.
The years I've got to make up for.
Don't you see, Marty?
A woman has only a short time
when life can be exciting for her...
when she can enjoy being a woman.
I want that time. I want it desperately.
I'm gonna drain everything
out of those years there is to get.
I'm gonna squeeze them dry.
Try to understand, will you?
Don't look at me like that.
I can't help it. I can't help myself.
I'm afraid I'll have to be
going along, Marty.
I thought, if Miss Whitehead was leaving,
I could give her a lift.
Good night.
- Miss Whitehead?
- Yeah.
I'm Patricia Longworth.
A mutual friend told me
I might find you here.
May I join you?
Yeah, sure. Sit down.
Thank you.
Our friend tells me you're interested
in a new apartment, new clothes, etc.
He thought I might be able
to offer some helpful advice.
If George thinks I need advice,
why doesn't he give it to me himself?
Or doesn't he want to be
seen with me in public?
My dear Miss Whitehead,
I happen to know...
that George sees
rather great potentialities in you.
So far as being seen with you in public...
you must remember he is a married man...
and he does occupy a position
of some importance in the community.
Okay, I'll buy that.
But just who are you
and how do you fit in?
A moment ago, when I mentioned
I was Patricia Longworth...
you never batted an eye.
That proves conclusively that you
didn't spend your youth in this city.
Or if you did, you didn't waste your time
reading the society page.
I was too busy reading the want ads.
- What are you selling?
- My old contacts.
Some of them are still open.
And they have a certain market value
to some of my newer contacts...
people such as our friend.
I'm having a bourbon and soda.
What'll you have?
Vermouth cassis.
- She'll have a...
- Vermouth cassis, please.
Let's start with your name.
Ethel Whitehead.
I wonder if we couldn't find something
a little more provocative?
This is really one of our nicest apartments.
It'll do.
We redecorate the bedrooms,
change the lighting fixtures...
and redo the terrace. Is that clear?
We can redecorate Radio City
if you want to spend the money.
- We do.
- In whose name shall we write the lease?
Mrs. Forbes. Mrs. Lorna Hansen Forbes.
Forbes. Yes, of course.
- Steel, isn't it, or is it tobacco?
- No, oil.
That's why I'm leaving.
Derricks everywhere, even the backyard.
Mrs. Forbes, it is a privilege
to have as our tenant...
a representative
of such a celebrated family.
He isn't here, Patricia.
Mrs. Forbes, I have a car here for you.
Right this way.
- George.
- Welcome home, Mrs. Forbes.
What's happened to your discretion?
- In front of all these people.
- What people?
Then there was the Riviera.
We arrived at the peak of the season.
Late summer we went to Amalfi
and then St. Moritz in the fall.
And of course, Paris in the spring.
It was enchanting, George.
The most wonderful experience
But I never want to be
that far away from you again.
Alfred, I think Mr. Castleman
would like a brandy.
No, thank you, Alfred.
Mr. Castleman needs no stimulation.
His head's already swimming.
He's hypnotized, stupefied,
drugged, and bewildered.
Whatever became of Ethel Whitehead?
Haven't you heard?
She ran away with Joe Caveny.
They got married
and lived happily ever after.
They deserved each other.
I'm interested in the Castlemans
and the Forbes.
What about their future?
They're a different breed. Cigarette?
Thank you.
I beg your pardon, Mrs. Forbes.
A gentleman to see Mr. Castleman.
A Mr. Martin Blackford.
I give you my word, Lorna.
I left explicit instructions
that I wasn't to be disturbed. I'm sorry.
That's all right, darling.
Show him in, please, Alfred.
Marty's worse about business than I am.
I sincerely believe
he thinks of nothing else.
- Hello, Marty.
- Good evening, Martin.
Sorry to interfere with your evening
like this, Mr. Castleman...
but something came up that couldn't wait.
- Let's have it.
- Won't you sit down, Martin?
No thanks, Ethel. I'll only be a moment.
I think we better call her Lorna.
I'm sorry.
It's about Grady. Nick Prenta's
been trying to reach you long distance.
He finally got me.
- What about Grady?
- He's been killed.
Killed? How?
Automobile accident.
It happened last night.
They found him this morning.
He'd evidently been drinking.
He must have lost control of the car.
- Who says he was drinking?
- Prenta. They found a bottle in the wreck.
Prenta lied. Grady didn't drink.
He was murdered.
- They fixed it to look like an accident.
- You don't know that...
I know Prenta. Grady was
on the track of something.
Prenta found out. That's why he killed him.
The rotten thug.
I pulled him out of a garbage pail.
Gave him the richest territory in the setup.
Before I'm through with him, I'm gonna
dump him back into that garbage pail.
- That presents quite a problem, doesn't it?
- Why should it?
I met Mr. Prenta the first time
I was invited to your home.
He didn't strike me as a man
you could dump into a garbage pail.
I don't care how he struck you.
You don't think I'm afraid of him, do you?
I didn't say that. But I thought
we are a legitimate business.
And an old-fashioned gang war
was to be avoided at all cost.
Why should it come to that?
George, you're head of the organization.
If Prenta's stepped out of line, replace him.
You don't replace Nick Prentas.
You eliminate them.
You don't do that till you find out
what's going on. Others may be involved.
That'll be a problem, too, won't it?
Sending somebody else out
to check on him, after he's been alerted.
Yeah, unless it was someone
he'd never suspect.
- Lorna.
- You can't be serious.
I don't know anyone
I'd have more confidence in.
Anyone more perfect for the job.
You can do it, Lorna.
You're the one person who can do it.
You really want me to go out there?
Why not? Nick's a setup for you.
He's always hanging around caf society.
A good-looking widow, lots of money,
her name in all the papers.
He'll be pouring his whole life
out to you in a week.
It's insane. You can't risk it. He's a killer.
- He's a man first.
- It's too dangerous. If he finds out...
I pay you to take care of my accounts,
not tell me what I'm going to do.
Did it ever occur to you
I might have something to say about this?
Of course, dear. I'm sorry.
You can leave us.
- George, I...
- Good night.
Good night.
What did you want to say?
First, I want to get things clear.
You want me to ingratiate myself...
with this "rotten thug
from a garbage pail," as you put it...
to the point where he'll tell me
what you want to know. Is that it?
That's it.
From what I've heard tonight,
he isn't likely to pour out his life story...
without very strong inducements.
There must be a limit to how far
you want me to go to induce him.
Lorna, stop coloring it.
You can handle yourself.
I wouldn't ask you to go
if I thought there'd be complications.
But I've got to know
what's going on out there.
Would you send your wife?
- Why bring my wife into this?
- Why bring me into it?
Because my wife is incompetent
for this job and you're not.
I equipped you for it.
Every step up the ladder, every Paris label,
they can all pay off now.
I see.
What am I, George?
Another wire service you've underwritten?
A new racetrack you've bought into?
Is that what I mean to you?
Is that all I've ever meant,
just another investment?
- You know better than that.
- Do I?
All right. Forget it.
Forgive me.
I wasn't very flattering.
I'm afraid I didn't stop to think.
I simply took for granted
that you were part of me...
and the things that concern me.
I know now, I had no right
to take that much for granted.
You had every right.
But don't ask me to believe
you've ever regarded me as a part of you.
We've both had to wait, Lorna.
It won't be much longer.
If you do this one job for me, I promise
you, when you come back, I'll be free.
Will you go?
I learned a long time ago, George,
that the customer is always right.
- Will tonight be soon enough to start?
- Tonight?
You're guest of honor at a party
I'm giving at the Hacienda Club.
You've invited Mr. Prenta, of course?
He didn't have to be invited.
He owns the Hacienda.
Place your bets, ladies and gentlemen.
Number 13, black.
Make your bets, ladies and gentlemen.
What's happened
to that system of yours, darling?
I thought you quit
while you were still ahead.
I've been experimenting with a new one:
Stay to the bitter end.
If you'll write out the obituary,
I'll give you my check.
Certainly, Mrs. Forbes.
- You can make it out over there.
- Thank you.
Number 25, red.
What's happened to your Mr. Prenta?
We can't wait for him forever.
He'll be here.
I made sure he knew you'd be here.
Either your communication system
is faulty...
or you've overestimated
my drawing power.
Here you are, Mrs. Forbes.
Better luck next time.
Make your bets, ladies and gentlemen.
- Your check's no good, Mrs. Forbes.
- My check's good anywhere.
Except here.
That's right. I'm fresh.
But I'm also generous.
Tonight, you're the guest of the house.
Tomorrow night, that's different.
Tomorrow night, you can lose your shirt.
I'll even pay to see that.
I'm Nick Prenta.
For a moment, you had me frightened.
Because if there's anything good
about me, it's my credit.
There's more than that good about you.
Could I show you around?
Excuse me, Mr. Prenta,
but she's my guest.
Okay, we'll share her.
I never understood
that picking up a check...
gave one an automatic entre
into a private party.
- No offense, of course.
- Of course not.
A woman from a glossy family like yours
has to be careful who she's seen with.
Do you also intrude
into your customers' background?
Only when they start flapping
their background in my face.
I'd be delighted to see your place,
Mr. Prenta.
You knocked the wind out of me just now,
Mrs. Forbes.
- I'll be able to say thank you in a minute.
- Don't be fooled.
I only did that to discourage you
from enquiring into my background.
Or have you done that already?
Not yet, but I'm considering it.
Shall we dance?
One newspaper calls you
an Oklahoma oil heiress.
The other said you're from Wyoming.
Which is it?
Are you this inquisitive
with everyone you meet?
It's a habit I picked up from my business.
The people I deal with
I want to know about.
In what way do you feel
you're dealing with me?
Right now, I'm just showing you around.
As for the future,
I had something more like this in mind.
You'd better change your mind...
because you'll be spending your future
with somebody else.
Hold out on that for one day.
We're having a little charity party
here tomorrow. Diving exhibition.
I want you to sit at my table.
How clear must I make myself,
Mr. Prenta?
My friends call me Nick.
I wouldn't be so presumptuous as to try
to break into your little circle of friends.
Why not? I moved into yours.
You shouldn't be so presumptuous, either.
Thank you for the tour.
Your club is very nice.
I had a hunch that was too plain.
Try this.
I was going to send them to your house.
I figured this would save time.
You're supposed to wear them.
You're very thoughtful, but I don't care
for orchids in the afternoon.
Now look,
what did I do that was so terrible?
Don't tell me no one's
ever made a pass at you before.
Well, not like that before.
Mrs. Forbes, when I do something
that isn't in the rule books, I admit it.
I have the notion that you've never
admitted a mistake in your life...
even to yourself.
And to admit one in front of others
would really be a catastrophe, wouldn't it?
All right, I'm sorry. I acted like a mug.
I've done worse than that to people
like you and never been called for it.
If I had, it wouldn't have mattered.
With you, it does.
- Did that hurt so much?
- Plenty.
But if you want me to,
I'll do it all over again.
Please sit down, Mr. Prenta.
Thank you.
All right, go!
That's enough.
That completes a reel
of the best-looking scenery in the West.
At least, it's the best-looking
swimming pool in the West.
I spent $20,000 for it.
Never been in it
more than half a dozen times.
It just doesn't seem safe...
not having orange peelings
and tin cans floating around on it.
That's the kind of water
I learned to swim in.
Right off the end of a pier.
I think you'd make
a national shrine out of it...
a constant reminder
of the things you've attained.
A constant reminder
of the things I've been able to buy.
There are some things a man can't buy.
Some things I may never be able to have.
Excuse me, Mr. Prenta.
Long distance calling. Detroit.
I'll be right back, darling. Business.
I'll take this call later.
Could I have a cigarette?
There's half a dozen boxes
around the pool filled with cigarettes.
There must be
more than half a dozen women...
who could be calling you on long distance.
You're jealous. I can't believe that.
There are a lot of things
I can't believe, either...
things about you.
I have a friend who has a friend
who's heard rumors.
I know what you've heard.
There've been others, sure.
But they were just women.
Not like you.
I'm not talking about the treatment
you give your friends.
It's the treatment you give your enemies
that disturbs me.
Your old man made his money in oil
and that made you an heiress.
I never knew my father,
or anybody I could call that.
I had to make mine myself.
Well, I'm making it.
But there's someone
who is always trying to take it away.
You either protect what you've got
or you've got nothing.
Everyone tries to protect
what he has, Nick.
The difference is in how he does it.
The difference is in the people
you have to deal with.
In your crowd, a polite no is enough.
In mine, it isn't.
The only kind of a no they understand
is from the end of a gun.
You mean you've actually had men killed?
You don't like what you're hearing,
do you?
That's because you've never
had to be a part of it.
You've never had to watch yourself
24 hours a day...
against somebody
trying to cut you down...
against the stooges
sent out to trip you up...
against people you can't trust.
Suppose you couldn't trust me,
would you have me killed?
I'd do that myself.
Thank you, Nick.
No. Save it for tonight.
I can't make it tonight.
That long-distance call, huh?
No, some people are coming over.
Strictly business.
Don't you believe me?
Depends on what kind of business it is.
I've been waiting for you.
You have a visitor from out of town.
- George?
- Martin Blackford.
- Marty? Here?
- No, the Palm Inn.
He's expecting you. Ask for Mr. Baldwin.
What are you doing here?
I go where George sends me.
He sent me out here
to check on one of his investments.
He hasn't heard from you in some time.
He hasn't heard from me
because I've had nothing to report.
I guess he just didn't understand.
He knows you've been busy.
He's had reports on that.
I was ordered to ingratiate myself
with Nick Prenta.
That's exactly what I've done,
no more, no less.
George thinks you've been
taking his orders too literally.
I'm inclined to agree with him.
Your agreement or disagreement
doesn't interest me.
No? You'd be amazed to learn
how highly my opinions are regarded.
I'm a very important fellow now.
That's why I'm in a position
to offer you some sound advice.
Don't hold out on George. If you do...
Are you absolutely certain
you've learned nothing?
Nothing he didn't already know.
Prenta did have Grady killed.
- What else?
- Nothing else.
In all the times you've been with him,
all the hours alone...
you've learned nothing else?
Not even the people he talks to?
- Sometimes there are calls, long distance.
- From whom?
- I don't know.
- From where?
- There was one from Detroit.
- When?
- This afternoon.
- What about?
He's expecting some people tonight.
Business, a meeting.
- Go on, what's the rest?
- That's all I know, all I want to know.
You're upset.
I thought you were enjoying your work.
Or has Mr. Prenta
suddenly become important to you?
- What do you mean?
- Has he promised you the world, too?
He means nothing to me.
Except, he's a human being
and he trusts me.
Don't tell me that disturbs you.
Taking advantage of a man's trust.
At any rate, you better forget
your stricken conscience.
Tonight you're going to Prenta's house.
You're gonna find out every person
in that meeting...
his name and why he's there.
If what George thinks is true,
you're gonna do even more.
You're going to help him get rid of Prenta.
Get rid of him?
You don't think George intends
to let him live, do you?
He's only been waiting
until he had all the facts.
That's what you're going to get for him.
I can't.
You're talking about killing...
taking a man's life.
I won't do it. I want no part of it.
You want no part of it?
You are a part of it.
What do you think you've been living on
all this time, playing on, traveling on?
Where do you think
the money came from...
that converted you
into the fashionable Mrs. Forbes?
It came from 100 killings, 1,000 beatings...
all the pennies, nickels, and dimes
squeezed from a million fists...
all the $3 payments
at the foot of the stairs...
just to make a lady of refinement
out of you.
No, Miss Whitehead.
This isn't a party you can leave
when you get bored.
We could've left, you and I,
a long time ago.
We were only guests then.
But we stayed too late.
Now you do
what George sent you out here to do.
Only do it better.
Find out about that meeting tonight.
George likes to think that when he gave
me the West Coast, it was a gold mine.
Gold mine. You know what it was.
It was an ashcan. Nothing.
But I turned it into something.
Me, myself. Nobody else.
I developed it.
And the same goes for you boys
in your districts.
I'm tired of sending the cream back East
to a worn out guy who does nothing...
but sit back and watch a mousy
bookkeeper add up what I made.
And I'll tell you something else.
I'm tired of you guys getting
the same kind of deal.
- Not half as tired as we are, Nick.
- Okay.
We'll go to New York in the morning.
I chartered a plane.
And when we get there...
Mrs. Forbes.
Hello, darling. What are you doing here?
I know unscheduled visits
are frowned upon.
Is something wrong?
Yes, Nick.
I'm afraid I've come down
with a terrible malady...
a bad case of jealousy.
- I'm sorry, but I had to be sure.
- About who I was with tonight?
Come on,
I want you to meet your competition.
It's okay, boys.
Great bunch of heart-crushers,
aren't they?
Darling, I want you to meet Mr. Fredericks.
- How do you do?
- How do you do?
- Mr. Bender.
- Hello.
- Loman.
- Good evening.
- It's a pleasure I'm sure.
- And Mr. Hart.
- How do you do?
- Boys, Mrs. Lorna Hansen Forbes.
Haven't we met before, Mrs. Forbes?
I'm afraid I don't recall, Mr. Loman?
The name is Hart, Eddie Hart.
Are you from around here, Mr. Hart?
Kansas City. But I get back East a lot.
- I could've sworn...
- You've seen her picture in the papers.
Somebody's always recognizing me
and assuming they've met me before.
Exactly what happened
the first minute I saw you.
Except for one thing.
Your pictures don't half do you justice.
I must remember
to complain to your editor.
- Also Kansas City?
- No, Cleveland.
We get your pictures out there.
My humble apologies
for the interruption, Nick.
Please forgive me, gentleman. Good night.
- Good night.
- Good night.
Relax, boys.
I'm so ashamed.
I shouldn't have come here, Nick. Sorry.
You couldn't have picked a better time.
Do you know
who those fellows are in there?
They work for the same guy I work for,
George Castleman.
In exactly 48 hours,
they'll be working for me.
Mr. Castleman will be cancelled out.
This whole country will be mine, Lorna.
I want you to share it with me.
You didn't answer me.
What is it, I'm not good enough?
- I didn't say that.
- But that's it.
When you really have to face it, that's it.
I know the right people,
I wear the right clothes...
- but I don't bleed the right color.
- Stop it.
I'll show you what color I bleed.
You and your gold-plated friends.
When that deal goes through,
I'll own them all.
Maybe then my name
will be worth something to you.
Maybe then you won't mind sharing it.
Share your name?
I've been asking you to marry me.
Will you marry me, Lorna?
What is it?
Do I really mean that much to you?
Nick, how much do I mean to you?
- Everything. Is that enough?
- Then get out of this.
Nick, I'm scared about what you're doing,
what you're planning, what it'll lead to.
If you give this up...
If that's what it takes to get you,
you've got a deal.
- I can get out of this inside of a year.
- It'll be too late then.
But I can't get out now, Lorna.
This is the big jump.
I've got to see it through.
Please, don't. Don't go through with it.
Give it up, please.
What do you want?
- Could I see you a minute, Nick?
- Sure.
Come on, darling.
You go on home. I'll see you later.
Patricia isn't here.
She's gone to the movies.
George sent her.
Hello, Lorna.
Aren't you glad to see me?
Yes, of course.
When did you get here?
A little while ago.
I haven't been too far away.
How was the meeting?
What meeting?
The meeting you told Marty about,
at Nick's house.
Or maybe you made a mistake.
Maybe you shouldn't have told him.
What do you mean?
I suppose you don't know anything
about a plane trip tomorrow morning.
Or are you going to New York with him?
George, I don't know
what you're talking about.
You don't.
What do you think I've been doing
since Marty gave me your report?
That was more than a meeting tonight.
They're all here, Eddie Hart, Sam Loman.
It's a planned revolt.
They're out to get me, aren't they?
Stop it, George.
Then why didn't you tell me?
What've you been stalling about?
I only found out about it tonight.
I would've called you.
You expect me to believe that?
You're in love with Nick.
You're trying to protect him.
No, George, that's not true. I love you.
I just don't want to see anyone killed.
Not you, not Nick, not anyone.
- Please believe me.
- You're lying.
You're so used to lying,
cheating, and double-crossing...
you can almost make it seem good.
George, stop it! That's enough!
She's no good. Not even to you.
She is to you. She can still help.
She can still be useful.
There's only one thing to do with dirt,
sweep it up.
George! Listen to me.
You want Nick, don't you?
She can get him for you here tonight,
and you'll be in the clear.
She can call him on the phone,
get him over here. He'll never know.
She'll tell the police it was self-defense.
He tried to attack her.
Look at her.
It'll work, George.
Don't you see? It's perfect.
Okay, Marty.
You've got a brain.
The best kind.
The kind you don't have to go out and buy.
Pick her up.
Put her in that chair.
Give her the phone.
Call Nick. Tell him you want to see him.
Tell him to come over right away, alone.
What's his number? I'll dial it for you.
Go on.
What's the number?
See who it is.
It's Nick.
All right. Let him in.
One word out of you and I'll kill you both.
Do you hear me? Let him in.
He has a key.
You pass out keys to all your friends?
I want to apologize for busting in
on you like this, Mrs. Forbes.
But a friend of yours, Eddie Hart,
said it would be okay.
He said Castleman might not like it...
but Ethel Whitehead
would go for anything.
Don't move, Nick.
I'm going to give you a lesson
in political science.
Revolutions are started by smart people...
but they're always finished
by smarter ones.
You always liked being in the headlines,
haven't you?
Well, this time, we're gonna move you
over to the obituary column.
Aren't we, Ethel?
You dirty tramp.
Where is she?
We'll have to dispose of him first.
And then I want her.
There's someone here to see you, Ethel.
You can't stay here any longer, Ethel.
Because of George?
You're unfinished business.
It's only a matter of time
before he gets here.
Excuse me.
Did you tell him where I live?
No. He's known that a long time.
I came here to help you.
Your only chance is to keep running,
keep hiding...
until the police arrest George.
The police? Do they know he killed Nick?
I told them.
- You told them? Why?
- It doesn't matter.
That means
you're unfinished business, too.
That doesn't matter, either.
You did that for me.
We do what we do because...
well, as you once said,
we can't help ourselves.
You better get your things.
Where will you go, Mr. Blackford?
Where can they go?
Where's Blackford?
I don't know.
I haven't seen him.
Now you're covering up for him.
If that's what you want to believe.
You were getting ready to leave.
Don't tell me you were waiting for me.
Strangely enough, George,
there was a time when I did wait for you...
and no one else.
But that's over now.
What did she have to do
with this Castleman guy?
Was she in love with him?
Was she working for him?
How'd she get the name
Lorna Hansen Forbes?
Whose idea was that?
Was she ever married
to a guy named Forbes?
Blackford, what's he got to do with it?
I don't know.
Where'd she get the money
to throw big parties?
- What'd she have to do with Prenta?
- Why'd she go out West?
Leave us alone. We told you all we know.
Mr. Whitehead,
you and your wife can come in now.
Let them through, boys.
- Can we talk to her?
- Later.
Well, it must be pretty tough
living in a place like this.
Tougher to get out. Think she'll try again?
Wouldn't you?