The Man in the White Suit (1951) Movie Script

[ Man ] now that calm
and sanity have returned
to the textile industry,
I feel it my duty to reveal
something of the true story
behind the recent crisis--
A story which we were happily
able to keep out of the
newspapers at the time.
The trouble began--
Not in my own mill,
i'm glad to say--
But during my visit to the mill
owned by michael corland,
Which manufactures
an artificial fiber,
similar to my own.
Corland is
a personable young man,
Who seemed to have impressed
my daughter.
He was also anxious
to impress me,
With the idea that his mill was
a sound financial investment.
Output is excellent.
Six million yards
of filament a day.
How many ?
Six million.
That's right,
isn't it, hill ?
Six million feet.
Yes, mr. Corland.
Feet, of course.
[ Chuckles ]
of course.
Good morning. I'm lunching here
with mr. Corland and my father.
They're still looking
around the mill, miss birnley.
Would you care to wait
in mr. Corland's off--
Um, michael.
Hello, daddy.
Good morning, mr. Hill.
Now, now, daphne,
please don't interrupt.
I'm having a most
illuminating tour.
This way ?
This way, mr. Birnley.
Oh, this way.
Thank you.
How's it going ?
Why, what does he say ?
Oh, nothing.
That's the trouble.
Oh, that's only his
"kingpin of industry" act.
"Forty glorious years
in textiles." Don't
let it get you down.
I'm sure he'll put up
all the money you want.
[ Clattering ]
Sorry... sir.
Come on. Come on.
Of course, it's hardly
up to what you have
at birnleys.
Eh, for instance, sir,
if you'd step this way.
Mr. Green, perhaps
you would show mr. Birnley...
The latest thing
you've been working on.
[ Liquid bubbling ]
[ Rhythmic bubbling, gurgling ]
Just a moment, green.
Thank you.
What's this ?
I really couldn't say,
mr. Birnley. Mr. Green,
you would explain.
Well, it's, uh--
Obviously, it's, uh--
[ Whistles ]
[ Green ]
mr. Wilkins ?
Yes, sir.
Is, uh, this yours ?
No, sir.
[ Green ]
harrison ?
[ Wheezes ]
Yours ?
No, sir.
I thought it was... his.
[ Men chattering ]
well, does it matter,
really ?
Merely a matter
of interest.
Fotheringay ?
Could you spare us
a moment ?
What is this ?
[ Rhythmic bubbling,
gurgling continues ]
Don't you know ?
I think it was
a special job.
Who for ?
Come along.
Come along.
Who authorized it ?
Apparently you did.
[ Corland ]
really, mr. Green, you must know
whether you did or did not.
[ All talking at once ]
What does it matter, anyway ?
I think you're being very ru--
There must be some quite
ordinary explanation.
It's ridiculous.
The thing can't
have grown there.
Mr. Hill, will you
please find out
what this is about ?
Yes, sir.
Green, check with
the accounts department.
Of course. Take them
the order number.
Uh, very good, sir.
Right away, sir.
"3-7-8-2-5. 3-7-8-2-5."
[ Rhythmic bubbling,
gurgling continues ]
[ Chattering ]
I'm so sorry.
I really shouldn't
start asking questions.
On the contrary.
Shall we lunch ?
I think you've seen
just about everything.
Yes, i think i have.
Here it is.
[ Diners chattering ]
4,000 ?
But spent on what ?
Hydrogen, sir.
Heavy hydrogen.
This is absolute nonsense !
Oh, for heaven's sake !
I want to aim
at materials and designs,
Combining the strength
and simplicity...
Of the old english
hand loom weavers,
with the color and fire...
Of the flemish
or provenal.
Now, if i had
an extra hundred thousand--
Excuse me, sir.
After lunch, hill.
It's very urgent.
After lunch, hill !
Where was i ?
Well, you mustn't
let us keep you
from anything vital.
No, it's nothing.
[ Coughing ]
What is it, michael ?
It's nothing.
Excuse me,
will you, please ?
So i told him.
Mr. Wilkins !
Yes ?
Mr. Corland wants you.
He's in accounts.
Mr. Harrison !
[ Gulps, coughs ]
They want you, too,
in accounts.
Excuse me.
Could you tell me where
mr. Corland is please ?
[ Bubbling continues ]
[ Woman ]
stratton !
Mr. Corland wants you !
No, mr. Corland,
you're not firing me.
I resign.
I'm not a cheat, nor a swindler.
I did what i did because
there was no other way.
I may have had just
a menial job here,
but at cambridge,
They gave me a first
and a fellowship.
I would be there still
if they hadn't been
so shortsighted.
Just as you are
and all the others
i've worked for.
But one day,
there'll be someone
with real vision.
I shall have a laboratory
given to me.
A proper laboratory,
with really modern equipment.
And assistants of my own.
No, don't interrupt me.
It's small minds like yours
that stand in the way
of progress.
But this is too big a thing,
bigger than you--
[ Water sloshing ]
I see you've been discharged
from your last six positions.
Oh, well, perhaps
a change in environment might--
Oh, no, it must be
a textile mill.
I see there's a vacancy
at the birnley mill, but--
Birnleys ?
Yes, but--
They have a research lab,
haven't they ?
I'm afraid this hardly suits
your qualifications.
They want a works laborer.
Oh, that'll suit me.
[ Machinery clacking ]
That's a nice place
to leave it, isn't it ?
[ Hits door ]
[ Clattering ]
Don't mention it.
You've got it loaded
too heavy.
Have i ?
You want to leave it
so you can see over the top.
Oh. Yes, of course.
New, aren't you ?
Uh, yes.
Never worked
in a mill before ?
Oh, yes, several.
I know.
Leave school,
Into the first
blind alley job
that comes along.
Too old for that.
Into another and another.
By the time you're 30,
what are you ?
Flotsam floating
on the flood tide
of profits.
There's capitalism
for you.
It wasn't quite like that.
I got a scholarship
to cambridge.
But you hadn't got
the old school tie.
Oh, you can't tell me.
I've seen plenty.
Where were you going
with this lot ?
The loading bay,
i think they call it.
You were going
the wrong way anyhow.
It's down there.
[ Siren wails ]
tea up.
Better leave it.
Oh, tea ? No thanks.
I think i'd rather--
Tea break !
We had to fight for it.
Just a moment.
Look, uh, we'd better
help you with it.
It's very delicate.
Yes, sir.
Pete, give us
a hand with this.
And get these gentlemen
some overalls.
Well, where's sid ?
Sid !
Sid !
No, no, quite wrong.
Sid !
Where's it got to go ?
Up to the lab.
It's an electro--
And electrola--
An electron microscope.
Ah, at last !
We'd better go
and check this over.
Mm, it's a beautiful job.
No, no !
You must have the gun filament
off before you switch on
the projector,
Otherwise you're liable
to put 4,000 volts
through the cathode...
And blow it to bits.
That's the specimen stage
i suppose.
The intermediate
alignment section.
This is the specimen stage.
Of course.
[ Man ] it seems to be
all right. If the chief's
satisfied, we'll go.
I don't suppose
you could spare someone
for a while,
Just till we get
the hang of it ?
What, me ?
Well, not necessarily
you yourself.
One of your assistants,
Well, i see.
Well, i-I think perhaps
i might manage it.
In fact, it might
be quite convenient.
You sure you're
not too, uh, busy ?
There are a few things,
of course, but...
If while i'm here,
you could let me have
a corner of a bench.
Oh, certainly, certainly.
Uh, see to that,
will you, wilson ?
I couldn't say,
i'm sure.
All right, love.
Tell her she can
pay it friday.
He didn't say nothing
this morning.
[ Children playing ]
Sid, what's all this ?
Harry says you've quit.
Oh, yes, yes.
Why ?
Well, you see, i--
You didn't get sacked ?
Oh, no, no, no.
what happened ?
Well, i've got the chance
of another job.
Where ?
At birnleys,
too, in a way.
You haven't quit, then ?
Yes and no.
I got the chance of working
in the laboratory.
It's a better job.
Oh, yes, much.
And more money ?
Well, i shan't actually
get paid for it.
What ?
We'll see about that.
Scab labor. Huh.
The works committee
had better hear about this.
But i don't want to get paid.
Not want to ?
I don't care whether
you want to get paid or not.
You've got to get paid.
Bertha, you mustn't do that.
It'll ruin everything.
It's only for a few weeks.
I promise you.
What are you going to
do for money ?
I was going to speak to you
about that, mrs. Watson.
I know it's a lot to ask,
but... if i could owe you
the rent for a couple weeks--
Only the rent--
I shan't need any food.
You'll not need food ?
Oh, i'll get that
Of course you can stay,
mr. Stratton.
Thanks very much,
[ Train passing by ]
[ Children
playing outside ]
[ Knock on door ]
[ Objects rattling ]
[ knock on door ]
are you in trouble ?
No. Everything's fine.
I've... got some money
in the post office.
Not very much,
but you could have it
if you need it.
I can get most of
what i need at the lab.
But if there are a few oddments,
i'll let you know. Thanks.
I'm even glad, michael.
You get no money from father.
All right. I'm freer
to say we'll get married
as soon as you like.
You're-- You're very sweet,
but i'm not going to let you.
What do you mean, michael ?
I wouldn't dream
of letting you marry me
in a fit of temper.
Not until you can do it
in perfectly cold blood.
Well, i must be off.
I have to look around
in some other direction.
[ Door closes ]
I thought you'd gone,
Father, i know what
you think about michael.
You think all he wants
is my money.
Hmm. Mine.
Well, it just so happens
you're wrong.
He's going to find
some other way to do
all the things he wants.
Splendid !
And he still wants me !
Well, if you
want him, daphne,
Then i'm very glad.
So, now will you change
your mind about him ?
Well, if that means-- Will i
invest in him in spite of what
i've seen of his mills-- No.
Just because there was
a lunatic in the place,
you blame him.
It might have happened
to anyone.
In the birnley mills,
for instance ?
I'm sick of the birnley mills...
And everything
connected with them.
And the sooner i leave home,
the happier i shall be.
Hey ! Wait !
Hm, hm, hm.
Well, all right.
[ Rhythmic bubbling
and gurgling ]
Ah, mr. Stratton.
I don't quite see
your point about this.
Daddy, just a minute. I--
[ Horn honks ]
- [ Tires skid ]
- Miss birnley !
Please don't tell
your father.
You're working for him now.
How nice.
Does he know ?
I can't wait to tell him.
Miss birnley !
Look, miss birnley !
Get off !
Just give me two more days.
One even. It's more important
than anything.
It's going to
astound the world !
[ Tires skid ]
Look. You know about
the problem of polymerizing
amino acid residues ?
What did you say ?
Look. You know what
a long-Chain molecule is ?
A what ?
Do you know
what a molecule is ?
Something like an atom ?
That's it !
Atoms stuck together.
In this case, like a long chain.
Now, cotton and silk
and every natural fiber
is made up of these chains.
And recently we've learned
to make artificial fibers
with even longer chains,
Such as, um,
rayon and nylon.
You've heard of nylon ?
Well, i think i've succeeded
in the copolymerization...
Of amino acid residues
and carbohydrate molecules.
Both containing ionic groups.
It's really perfectly simple.
I believe i've got
the right catalyst
to promote interaction...
Between the reactive groups
at the end of
the peptide chains...
And the carbohydrate
While the charges
of the ionic groups
will cross-Link the chains...
And confer valuable
elastic properties.
At high temperature
and pressure--
[ Daphne mumbling ]
"...And give a molten liquid
so that there is
a great probability of...
"To give a natural molecule
of a length great enough...
To confer spinnability."
Just wanted something
to read in bed.
Good night, daddy.
[ Tolling ]
[ Rhythmic bubbling, gurgling ]
[ Rhythmic bubbling,
gurgling stops ]
Well, after all,
how the devil can i
do anything about it ?
What's this ?
Hey !
Here, i need that !
Terribly sorry.
It's very important.
Just a minute.
I'm using that.
- What's all this ?
- Where's mr. Birnley ?
I've got to see mr. Birnley.
Mr. Stratton,
what's the matter ?
Mr. Hoskins, it's worked.
I've done it !
Done what ?
The radioactive groups in
the fiber-Forming molecules...
Haven't catalyzed
the internal rearrangement.
Not in the least.
I thought the polymerization
would be sterically hindered.
But it wasn't. It wasn't.
Where are my notes ?
Mr. Stratton--
I'll see you later.
I've got to see mr. Birnley.
- You can't do that.
- I've done it ! I've done it !
Stop him !
Stop him !
[ Arguing ]
Don't let him go !
Don't let him go !
[ Phone rings ]
- Nurse gamage.
- I've got to see mr. Birnley.
You're fired.
You understand ? Fired !
You can't fire me.
I don't work here.
What ?
That's right.
He doesn't.
[ Men arguing ]
now then ?
[ Hoskins ]
ah, sister !
Come here.
What's the trouble ?
He's mad,
that's the trouble.
A strong sedative,
that's what he needs.
Utterly fantastic.
A lunatic, obviously.
Yes, sir.
Very odd, indeed.
[ Raining ]
[ Doorbell rings ]
I want to see mr. Birnley.
I can't get any sense
out of the rest of them.
It's terribly important.
Your name.
My name, it's... stratton.
Sidney stratton.
I work at the mill.
That is, i did work at the mill.
Only i--
You have an appointment ?
No, but you see,
i know that--
It would have been better
had you made an appointment.
Mr. Birnley's busy now.
A meeting.
But i couldn't make
an appointment.
Write a letter
or telephone.
[ Rings doorbell ]
There's no question
of it.
But, mr. Birnley--
It's all very well between
these four walls, but what are
the shareholders going to say ?
for sundries ?
What sundries ?
Davidson will be here
at any moment.
Now, he should be able
to answer that.
[ Brakes squeak ]
[ Car door closes ]
[ Doorbell rings ]
Oh, mr. Birnley's
expecting you.
No, please, listen.
Let me explain !
Please ! Please !
What's all this ?
Oh, it's nothing.
[ Doorbell ringing
repeatedly ]
[ Doorbell stops ringing ]
Please give this to mr. Birnley.
I promise you he'll
want to see me.
I expect my works manager
to know everything, davidson,
down to the smallest detail.
I should hardly call
8,000 a detail.
Judging by the job numbers,
mr. Birnley, hoskins must know.
Well, who's hoskins ?
Your head
of research, sir.
Well, can you find
his private number,
or is it too much to hope ?
Oh, do try.
How can it be impossible ?
I've got them here. But--
Let me speak to him.
Oh, it's you.
Have you done it ?
Yes, i have, but i--
Come right in.
Look. Listen,
i'm asking you
a simple question.
What is it, knudsen ?
No, i don't care
what his name is.
I want to know what he--
Very well, then.
You must find him
and send him up here.
No, certainly not.
Tell him to go away.
What do you mean,
you can't ?
Well, you must know
his address.
Why, hang it all,
he's an employee.
Now, look here.
He said to go away.
- She's gone to fetch him.
Really, she has.
- Daphne, have you gone mad ?
I'm in the middle of a difficult
meeting. I don't know what
you're talking about.
How can you
if you won't listen ?
Whatever it is can wait
for half an hour.
This friend of yours
can't be so important--
[ Crash ]
No, don't, don't, don't !
Please, don't !
Ah, there you are at last !
Now listen to me.
No, daphne.
I will not listen to you.
Get out !
I won't.
Daddy !
Knudsen !
[ Doorbell rings ]
You're an irresponsible
young idiot. Knudsen !
Father !
And you're a pompous
and ungrateful old ass.
Oh !
Sidney !
Knudsen !
Knudsen !
[ Doorbell ringing ]
knudsen !
No, father,
listen to me.
Knudsen !
If you think i'd give it to you,
you must be crazy, not if you
were the last man on earth.
Even if i liked you,
i wouldn't give it to you
if you went down...
On your knees
and begged for it.
I won't stay in your house
another minute.
Oh !
You've made an idiot
of yourself, father.
And i'm delighted to say
you're going to regret it.
You need
a good spanking.
You don't even know
what he's done.
Well, apart from
costing me 8,000,
what has he done ?
He's made a new kind of cloth.
It never gets dirty,
and it lasts forever.
Well, that's ridiculous.
Oh, it is, is it ?
Do you know what
a long-Chain molecule is ?
Do you know what happens
if one makes one
of infinite length...
With optimum
interchain attractions ?
Do you know what it means ?
It means that
to break the fiber, you'd
have to split the molecule.
It means,
for all practical purposes,
it would last forever.
And it has a surface charge
of static electricity.
It repels dirt.
That may be nonsense,
of course.
Maybe he hasn't really done it.
Maybe he's talking
through his hat.
On the other hand,
maybe he has.
Maybe you're talking
through yours.
The point is
you don't know,
And you're too pigheaded
to find out.
[ Door slams ]
[ Man ]
They're bound
to ask questions.
Stratton, you're coming
straight away with me
to see mister--
Ah, hoskins.
I've decided to
authorize mr. Stratton...
To continue
his research here.
[ Chuckles ]
I'm sure i can rely on you
to give him everything he needs.
Yes, sir.
Well, there you are,
[ Chuckles ]
well, you've got
your contract.
And you'll get
your equipment.
Now, is there
anything else ?
[ Coughs ]
there is just one thing.
Yes, my boy.
I've been thinking
about the possibility
of... chain reactions.
And i think probably
we ought to...
clear the lab.
Clear the lab ?
Only as a precaution.
Secrecy, you mean ?
Th-That too.
[ Chuckles ]
You're a shrewd boy.
See about that, hoskins.
And you'll see that not a word
gets out about this,
even in the mills.
Well, perhaps we shall have
a little surprise to spring
on our competitors.
[ Chuckles ]
[ Birnley laughing ]
[ Rhythmic bubbling,
gurgling ]
Well, there we are.
Shall we try it now,
Or do you think
we ought to wait
until after lunch ?
Whatever you say.
Let's have a go now.
Oh, sorry.
Mr. Hoskins ?
Next door.
[ Clattering ]
oh, mr. Hoskins.
Good morning.
I didn't know where
to find you at first.
Would you just okay these
for accounts, please ?
It does seem
an extraordinary amount.
I suppose it's necessary.
My dear king--
[ Explosion ]
[ Glass breaking underfoot ]
It shouldn't
have done that.
Accounts have sent us
a rough estimate, sir.
Might be worse.
Plus, two thousand
to cover the damage
to the building.
What ?
Oh, i see.
Anything else ?
Yes, sir.
Radioactive thorium !
Well, what does
he want that for ?
[ Explosion ]
What ?
Shut the door.
There's another one
due at any moment.
What is it all for,
exactly ?
It's a lot of tomfoolery
if you ask me.
[ Ring ]
Hello, yes,
hoskins here.
Manchester daily express here.
We heard
there were some accidents
in the laboratory.
I just wondered
if there was a story in it.
Must be some stupid rumor.
Of course, we are making
some structural alterations.
[ Clears throat ]
but that's all.
Yes, right.
- There's the--
- [ Explosion ]
Uh-Oh. There go
the fireworks again.
Good as blackpool,
eh, frank ?
Someone will get hurt
if it goes on.
If anyone does, it'll be sid.
He's the one who's taking
all the chances.
And if you was any kind
of a shop steward,
You'd be getting him
danger money.
Fat lot he needs it.
Jumped out of his overalls
into a cushy job pretty fast...
And a cushy
pay packet too.
Well, whatever he gets,
he earns all right.
It's birnley's pockets
he's lining, or they wouldn't
have pushed him into it.
And a fat lot they care
if he goes through the roof.
Me too.
[ Rhythmic bubbling, gurgling ]
Well... here's hoping.
I must frankly admit
that i'm discouraged.
Very discouraged.
No one's allowed in, sir.
Yes, i know.
Mr. Stratton's orders, sir.
Mr. Birnley's orders.
He gave me
strict instructions, sir.
I hardly think
that applies to us.
[ Rhythmic bubbling, gurgling ]
Well, what are
we waiting for ?
Would you like to ?
It's easy.
[ Rhythmic bubbling,
gurgling stops ]
It must have worked.
Were you here
just now ?
Yes. Why ?
My dear boy,
what's the matter ?
It's just that it worked.
Do you mean--
Just now ?
you should have--
Davidson ! Oh.
We've got it,
all right. Look.
We've got the answer,
mr. Birnley.
We can go ahead now.
[ Chuckles ]
[ Ticking ]
there's a chemical change
at 300 degrees centigrade.
[ Birnley ]
hm. Quite remarkable.
[ Sidney ]
we shall have to do
a little ground work on that.
[ Man ] seven and a half.
[ Man #2 ]
seven and a half.
- [ Sidney ]
though as you say,
- Thirty-Five.
We shall only need to vary
the intermediates to make
a substitute for...
Wool, cotton, linen--
Whatever you please.
Yes, thirty-One.
And, of course, there's
the question of dyeing.
Excuse me.
Thank you.
At the moment,
the fiber's intractable.
It repels dye
just as it does dirt.
But, uh--
We shall have to, uh,
Introduce the coloring matter
at an earlier stage,
Left shoulder.
While the polymer
is still in the melt.
Yes, seven.
You won't find
any difficulty
in stitching.
The needle will simply
pass through between
the weave as usual.
If he could let me have
paper patterns of the suit.
Paper patterns ?
Yes, i shall have to
have, um,
Templates made
and get the pieces
cut out for you.
Well, just as you wish.
I suppose you wouldn't prefer
for us to cut them out ?
Oh, i'm afraid
you wouldn't be able to.
[ Laughs ]
[ Knock on door ]
Come in.
[ Daphne laughing ]
- Well, what's funny about it ?
- It's just the suit.
It looks as if
it's wearing you.
It's still a bit luminous.
But it'll wear off.
Oh, no.
No ?
No, it makes you look like
a knight in shining armor.
That's what you are.
Me ?
Don't you understand
what this means ?
Millions of people
all over the world,
living lives of drudgery,
an endless losing battle
against shabbiness and dirt.
You've won that battle
for them.
You've set them free.
The whole world's
going to bless you.
[ Train whistle blows ]
Unbreakable ?
That's what they're saying,
mr. Corland.
Green, is--
Is that possible ?
Well, uh, if he's using
a heavy hydrogen,
He might get
a more complex molecule.
In plain language--
Yes or no ?
It's, uh, possible.
I'm very grateful
to you, king. I--
I think the...
industry will be.
Get me sir john kierlaw.
[ Laughing ]
now, now, davidson.
Hardly that, surely.
Well, as soon as
i have finished with the press,
I should like to see
the heads of all departments.
[ Phone rings ]
Yes ?
One moment, please.
It's sir john kierlaw.
Sir john--
All right. I'll--
I'll speak to him.
- He's here.
- Here ?
So it was--
[ Kierlaw breathing heavily ]
No, no,
the asthma atomizer.
[ Inhaling atomizer ]
Now, some fool...
Has invented
an indestructible cloth.
- Right ?
- Yes.
Where is he ?
How much does he want ?
I'm afraid
we have mr. Birnley
to contend with first.
As i understand it, mr. Birnley
intends to manufacture
and market this product.
- Certainly.
- Are you mad ?
[ Birnley ]
well, i consider it
my duty to do it.
It'll knock the bottom
out of everything, down to
the primary producers.
What about the sheep farmers
and cotton growers ?
The importers
and middlemen.
The big stores, even.
It'll ruin all of them !
The point.
Let us stick to the point.
- What about us ?
- Well, i'll admit
some individuals...
May suffer temporarily.
But i will not stand
in the way of progress.
The welfare
of the community
must come first.
You're not likely
to suffer much.
Michael, that's
unworthy of you.
Sir john,
Surely you realize this is
the greatest step forward.
Step forward ?
Over a precipice.
It means disaster.
Disaster ?
Was the spinning
jenny a disaster ?
Was the mechanical loom ?
For those who didn't
control them, yes.
they increased output.
This will finish it.
Just arriving now, sir.
He's the one to make
the complaint, isn't he ?
Well, what's this ?
Worker's playtime ?
It's sid !
Look whose car.
Sid !
Hello, bertha.
What have
they done to you ?
Well, it's really
what i've done.
We are just going to
announce it to the press.
Announce what ?
My new fiber.
Mind !
Mr. Corland.
In mr. Birnley's office.
It never gets dirty ?
And never wears out ?
That's right.
Now what do you think
of him ?
And you think they'll
go ahead with it ?
You're not even born yet.
What do you think happened
to all the other things ?
The razor blade
that never gets blunt.
And the car that runs
on water, with a pinch
of something in it.
No. They'll never
let your stuff on the market
in a million years.
He's right, you know.
Vested interest.
The dead hand of monopoly.
It's not like that at all,
i assure you.
Everything's organized.
We're telling the newspapers
this morning,
And then going right ahead.
But if this stuff
never wears out, we'll only
have one lot to make.
- That's right.
- I've been looking
everywhere for you.
First of all,
i want to apologize.
Didn't recognize a genius
when i saw one.
Excuse me, sir. I--
I've just come
from mr. Birnley.
One or two things
he asked me to straighten out.
[ Train whistle blows ]
That's lovely.
Six months's work
and that'll be the lot.
Every mill in the country
will be laid off.
It's birnley's doing.
Sidney wouldn't invent
a thing like that.
Something oughta
be done about it.
Something is gonna be done.
We'll get the works committee
together for a start.
I don't want to
be selfish about it.
Later on,
i might be able to offer it
to other manufacturers--
Under license.
You want us
to cut our throats...
While you build up
another fortune in royalties
on our dying efforts !
[ Birnley ]
well, after all, may i point out
that i control this process.
Do you ?
Of course i do.
A sordid matter
of details, sir john.
Well ?
Stratton's diary of his first
successful experiment--
Date: september 15.
Stratton's contract
with mr. Birnley--
Date: october 1.
[ Stammers ]
sir john.
[ Wheezing ]
I expect he's
on his way to us now,
but i'll just make sure.
The works committee ?
I'm sorry, mr. Birnley's busy.
No. No, no, no,
i can't interrupt him now.
No ! No !
Mr. Davidson, wait !
You can't go there !
Sir john, kierlaw.
Mr. Cranford.
How do you do ?
Mr. Mannering.
How do you do ?
Mr. Corland you know,
of course.
This is mr. Stratton,
What's this ?
A new contract.
Sign it, young man.
What was wrong
with the old one ?
Well, this is
a big thing, sidney.
Too big for one mill.
And so i decided
it was necessary to bring in
these other gentlemen.
I see.
[ Intercom buzzes ]
yes ?
[ Woman ] mr. Birnley,
it's the works committee.
They say--
No, no, i'm busy.
It's urgent !
It's about mr. Stratton.
Mr. Birnley
will see them later.
I think
it's all in order.
Oh, that's ingenious.
- May i ?
- Of course.
How much petrol
as against how much ink ?
I really don't know.
There's just one thing--
Wilson, my assistant.
He's been a great help on this,
and i'd like him to get
some of the credit.
Of course.
We all realize the value
of mr. Wilson's contribution.
I mean, when the results
are published, i'd like
his name to be mentioned.
There may be a little delay
in publication, of course.
Delay ? Oh.
Why ?
You see, sidney,
we have to wait
till the right moment.
Why not now ?
To announce it
right away...
Might upset
the delicate balance
of the market.
Would it ?
But what happens
when you begin to sell
the stuff ?
Leave these problems
to us, mr. Stratton.
Just sign the document.
[ Birnley ]
sir john's right, sidney.
You are going ahead
with production ?
Well, sidney, i--
I'd like to think this over.
Young man, come here.
We need control
of this discovery.
Complete control.
If you want twice the amount
in that contract, we'll pay it.
A quarter of a million.
- To suppress it ?
- Yes.
[ Train whistle blows ]
Excuse me.
[ Intercom buzzing ]
Wait ! Now listen,
all of you !
Sidney ! Sidney !
[ Sir john ]
stop him !
[ Gasps ]
[ Clattering ]
This is too much
no, no, no, wait.
Wait, please, all of you.
Yes, mr. Birnley ?
S-S-Sidney, no !
- I beg your pardon,
mr. Birnley ?
- Miss johnson, there's a room--
[ Sir john ]
stop him !
Sidney, stop that !
Look here.
You can't--
[ Screams ]
stop a minute !
[ Grunts ]
Stop him !
Stop him ! Stop him !
For goodness sake,
stop him !
Stop him. He--
He mustn't leave the mill.
How can we stop him ?
By force.
By force ? I will not
resort to violence.
How else ?
If he sells
to anybody else,
he ruins us all.
Then we must reason
with the boy.
How can we reason with him
when he's not here ?
Yes, sir ?
This way, gentlemen.
Oh, i'm sorry.
Wrong floor !
[ Clattering, thud ]
Is he all right ?
[ Children chattering
in distance ]
Any news of him ?
He's up at birnley's.
What did i tell ya ?
Right in their pocket.
You've no right to talk
like that. Perhaps
he can't help himself.
They say
he had a headache.
Aye, sticks out a mile.
Birnley won't see
the works committee
and sid can't face us.
[ Knocking ]
Mr. Stratton lives here ?
Yes, but, uh--
Now he's going to
live with mr. Birnley.
I've come to collect
his baggage. Also,
to give you two weeks' rent.
Now who's right ?
It's just as i told you.
Sitting right in their laps.
[ Chattering ]
Well, give me some figures.
Fallen to what ?
46.9 ?
No, no, no, no.
No, don't sell.
No, of course not.
There's not a word
of truth in it.
Yes, yes.
I'll be on-- On here
till further notice.
Well, that's just
the beginning.
[ Phone rings ]
Hello, yes ?
Yeah ? Calcutta ?
Tomorrow'll be a nosedive.
Just on these rumors.
It's absurd. There must
have been a leakage.
Well, you should know,
you started the first one.
It's no good your blaming me--
You know very well--
Sir john's right. Let's keep
to the point, shall we ?
All right, put him on.
There's only one thing that
will put the market together,
And that is a denial
backed with suppression--
Total and permanent.
Hello, mottram.
How ? We've already offered
him a quarter of a million.
Well, we can't keep him
here forever. There are
one or two laws in the country.
I've got it.
Maybe i should talk to him,
let him name his own price.
I think not, michael.
I will--
Gentlemen ! Gentlemen.
Knudsen ?
His door's locked.
The key's gone.
I have it, miss birnley.
[ Snaps fingers ]
i'm sorry, miss birnley.
No one goes in,
he doesn't come out.
Mr. Birnley's instructions.
There's no sense in pursuing
this boy with money !
It means nothing to him !
What else could ?
Yes, yes, yes.
Put him on, will you ?
Women ?
He didn't seem to me
to be the type.
It's often that type
that, um--
Very true.
If we could just find
a friend of his.
I mean, someone who knew
the best way to talk to him.
Father ?
What's going on ?
What have you
been doing to sidney ?
[ Birnley ]
now, really, daphne,
it's no concern of yours.
[ Daphne ]
i want to know just exactly
what you've done to sidney.
W-Will you please--
I'm sorry, father--
This is a very important
business meeting.
Miss birnley, just a minute.
Stand by the phone, will you ?
I'll ring you back.
Um, miss birnley,
i take it you know
mr. Stratton quite well ?
How well ?
We're very good friends.
Why not ?
Why not ? It may be
very useful to us.
[ Phone rings ]
I thought i told you--
[ Man ]
mr. Birnley ?
Oh, it's for you.
Hello ?
Sit down, miss birnley.
[ Birnley ]
no, davidson, i cannot.
Miss birnley,
We're trying to buy
the world rights
to mr. Stratton's new discovery.
But he doesn't seem
to trust us.
Doesn't he ?
Why not ?
Miss birnley,
you're the daughter
of an industrialist.
You must realize how
reckless exploitation...
Of anything new would upset
the delicate balance of trade.
You understand that ?
I am beginning to.
Good. Good.
You want to suppress it.
But, gentlemen, if you aren't
able to persuade him,
why should i be able to ?
Uh, all men are susceptible,
miss birnley.
I need hardly tell you that
you're a very attractive girl.
Thank you.
[ Birnley ]
tell them i'll
see them tomorrow.
[ Daphne ]
well, michael,
what do you say ?
It's a desperate
situation, daphne,
For the whole industry.
Yes. Yes, i'm beginning
to realize that.
[ Cranford ]
there's no need to explain
what's at stake.
When i tell you
we've already offered stratton
a quarter of a million,
You can see
for yourself.
I can, indeed.
But, since we're on
the subject of price,
what do i get out of it ?
- [ Cranford ]
miss birnley !
- Daphne !
I haven't had much experience
with these sort of things,
But i've always understood
it was comparatively well paid.
Now, miss birnley--
This isn't anything
to joke about.
I suggest 2,000.
Aren't you rating
my value a little low ?
Wouldn't 5,000 be fairer ?
Five thousand. Agreed.
It's a pleasure to do
business with you, sir john.
Well, daphne ?
And about time too.
I want to
talk to you, sidney.
I never thought
you would be on their side.
You may not believe me,
sidney, but i want
what's best for you.
I-- I don't like this
any more than you do.
I hate this town.
The mill, everything.
People who think of nothing
but moneygrubbing.
Don't you feel
like that ?
I want to
get away, sidney.
I want to see something
of the world beyond
this dirty little town.
To make a life for myself
where there are people
who know the way to live.
Italy, maybe.
France ?
Well, why don't you ?
I can't.
But you could.
And you could take me.
How ?
I know what they offered you.
You could live the rest
of your life on it.
Go anywhere.
Do as you please.
And if you want me,
i'd come too.
What's wrong ?
I'm sorry. No.
Not even if it means me ?
Thank you, sidney.
What for ?
If you'd said yes,
i'd have strangled you.
Now, we've got to get
that suit to the newspapers.
Show it to them
and tell them the whole story.
That will blow the lid
off everything, and they'll
never get it back on.
But how ?
Would you stake your life
on this ?
You can issue
a categorical denial
to the press.
The stuff does not exist.
It has never been invented.
It never could be.
There is no panic here
Certainly mr. Birnley
will confirm that.
No, no, no.
Good heavens, davidson,
I told you to deal with them
in your own way.
Yes, mr. Birnley.
They've come out.
On strike.
What ?
Strike ?
[ Davidson ]
they've got the whole mill out.
I tried to get you
on the telephone,
but you kept on being engaged.
Well, you better get them
back at all costs. Otherwise,
there'll be a landslide.
Landslide ?
[ Davidson ]
now, mr. Birnley, i--
[ Men arguing ]
- Then go and do something !
- They want a guarantee we're
not going into production.
But, we're not intending to.
Good heavens, man, that's
what we're out to prevent.
Yes, i know. But they won't
take one's word for anything.
Oh, this is insanity !
They're afraid of being out
of work and so they down tools.
What am i to do ?
- [ Knocking ]
- Get them up here.
Up to the house.
I'll talk to them.
[ Chuckles ]
well, what are you waiting for ?
But what guarantee
can we give them ?
We don't control the thing.
Oh, i don't know.
Sir john--
[ Loud crash ]
[ Whistling ]
It's only a matter
of fivepence.
You're very unreasonable.
Excuse me--
Can you let me have fivepence ?
No coppers at all.
Well, more would do.
I've got three and eleven,
but i want four and four.
I've got to get to manchester.
I could more than pay you back
as soon as i've done it.
I could give you 100.
I've got some money at my digs.
Better get it then.
Kierlaw or anyone else.
And frank'll--
[ Bertha ]
it's sid !
Hey ! Wait for me !
Sid !
Sid, i want to
talk to you.
Can't talk now,
gotta find a shilling.
Sid, where are you going ?
Your room's lent.
Where's that vase ?
Who are you ?
Sid, the room's let
to some old geezer.
Oh, i beg your pardon.
What's going on ?
Will you please
kindly leave this room ?
Oh, sid.
Sid, i knew you'd
turn out right in the end.
They tried to soften you up.
Oh, you can't tell me.
They locked me in the attic.
Human life means nothing
to 'em, but you got away.
I must go now.
Don't you worry.
They won't get at you again.
I'm going up to a meeting
there now. Wait till i
tell them. What a trump card.
Thanks, bertha.
But there's a train
to manchester at 8:13.
Manchester ? What for ?
To give it to the newspapers--
The whole story.
Here, wait a minute.
What story ?
The whole thing. My invention
and how people tried to stop it.
But they're not going to.
Sid !
Whose side are you on ?
The same as you.
Don't you understand ?
They want to stop it.
So do we.
Sid, listen.
No, sid.
Sid, don't go !
Now, look, sid. Sid !
[ Clattering ]
[ sid grunts ]
[ Sid cries out ]
[ clattering ]
Will you please stop ?
Please, stop.
Stop it.
Stop it.
[ Struggling ]
I'll fetch mrs. Watson.
Here, you can't do that.
That's my room.
Open that door.
Let me out of here.
Let him out of there.
Not likely.
All right, i'll fetch
the police.
Hey ! Wait a minute !
[ Grunts ]
[ banging continues ]
- Let me out !
- [ Banging continues ]
Bertha !
What's up ?
Harry, stay here.
Don't let either
of them escape.
Eh ?
Sid's gone mad. He doesn't
know what he's doing.
He's got us all
muddled up with birnley.
[ Sighs ]
[ classical ]
This is beyond belief,
gentlemen. And if
sir john was suggesting...
What i could hardly believe
he could be suggesting--
Now, my dear birnley,
[ stammering ]
Let your daughter deal
with stratton in her own way.
After all, she went
into it with her eyes open.
Well, i didn't.
Yes ?
The works committee
is here.
Oh, well--
Well, show them up.
N-Now, birnley--
B-Birnley, listen--
[ classical ]
[ Daphne ]
who is that ?
It's me, daddy.
Daphne, i-I just wondered
if you were still there.
Yes, i'm still here.
Daphne, i-I want to
talk to you.
Not now, father.
[ Cranford ]
birnley, don't be ridiculous.
But she's locked in.
[ Chattering ]
Crazy or not, we've got him.
We'll get some sense into him.
[ Birnley ]
daphne !
Open-Open the door, please.
Daphne, open this door.
Daphne !
Knudsen ?
Ladies and gentlemen,
sir john will now explain
to you the situation.
We're talking to mr. Birnley.
No one else.
Mr. Birnley will be along
in a few minutes.
He better come now.
And we'll do
the explaining.
You see, the boot's
on the other foot now.
Now that sidney stratton's
with us.
W-With you ?
[ Frank ]
that's right.
[ Record slows ]
sidney's apologies.
But, from now on,
you'll just have to, um,
count him out.
[ Dog barking in distance ]
- Hello.
- Hello.
[ Soft knock ]
[ Knocking continues ]
Who's that ?
[ Knocking ]
Well, what is it ?
You know,
there's a man in that room.
I know that.
Well, he's got out.
Eh ?
He went that way.
All right.
Thank you.
- Good-Bye.
- Here, let me out of here.
Let me--
[ Clamoring ]
listen !
[ Cranford ]
what are we arguing for ?
Nobody wants to market it.
[ Man ]
quite right.
My dear friends,
You must see that
our bone of contention
is nonexistent.
Capital and labor
are hand in hand in this.
Once again, as so often
in the past, each needs
the help of the other.
[ Phone ringing ]
[ Harry ]
mr. Birnley ?
Yes ?
Can i speak to bertha ?
Who ?
Is somebody called bertha ?
Who is it ?
It's me, bertha,
Harry, you--
I don't know how he did it.
There were bars on the window.
And the kid said he got out.
When i went in, he'd gone !
What !
[ Cranford ]
we'll get him
at the station !
Michael !
Corland ? Corland, you take
your car, i'll take mine.
Right !
Frank, you're not
going with them.
They're not going without me.
They're not going to
take me for a ride.
[ Sir john ]
wait for me.
[ Sir john wheezing ]
wait. Wait.
Okay, ducks.
Room for one more inside.
[ Grunting ]
[ engine starts ]
[ Train whistle blowing ]
- [ Tires screech ]
- [ Frank ]
there he is !
[ Cranford ]
all right, boys, get after him.
The other way !
Cut him off !
[ Tires screech ]
[ train approaching ]
There ! Come on, lads.
There's a light
bobbing up and down over there.
That's not a light,
it's sid.
[ Man ]
there he is !
[ Tires screech ]
Well, cheerio, alf.
[ Man ]
there he is !
After him, lads.
Come on.
After him !
Hey ! What's the matter ?
Dad ! What've you
been doing ?
That way.
Here, don't you know
there's a strike on ?
Now, listen,
there'll only be trouble
if you stay here.
It's the stability.
It isn't stable.
Mrs. Watson,
have you got something ?
My suit,
they can see me.
Why can't you scientists
leave things alone ?
What about my bit of washing
when there's no washing to do ?
[ Dog barking
in distance ]
[ Man ]
there he is, lads !
There he is.
- There !
- [ Man #2 ]
there he is.
- [ Car door closes ]
- [ Man #3 ]
all right, lads. We got him.
[ Laughing ]
- [ Laughter continues ]
- The work,
it's coming to pieces !
We're saved !
[ Laughter increases ]
Look ! Look !
Sir john !
Sir john !
[ Laughter continues ]
[ Man ]
look ! Look !
[ Crowd chattering ]
[ man ]
look, it's funny. Look !
[ Laughter, chattering stops ]
Here, lad, wear this.
[ Birnley narrating ]
the crisis is over now.
The news of sidney's failure
brought relief to the world.
I see.
It had been a hard and bitter
experience for all of us.
But we faced the future
with confidence.
We have seen the last
of sidney stratton.
I see.
[ Birnley ]
at least, i hope
we've seen the last of him.