Twelve Trees of Christmas (2013) Movie Script

"He spoke not a word,
"but went straight to his work,
"and filled all the stockings,
"then turned with a jerk.
"And laying his finger
aside of his nose,
"and giving a nod,
"up the chimney he rose.
"He sprang to his sleigh,
"to his team gave a whistle,
"and away they all flew
"like the down of a thistle.
"But I heard him exclaim,
"'er he drove out of sight,
"Merry Christmas to all
"and to all a good night. "
You are going to be sick of that poem
by the time Christmas comes.
I know, but it's the
one they keep choosing.
It's one of my favorites too.
Hey, Emily.
Did you start reading without me?
I was trying, Miss Jamison.
Good for you.
Is that Emily's Sky World Adventure?
You know this story.
It's my favorite.
You read it to us a while ago.
Well, a little pixie dust
certainly does stir the imagination.
Okay, let's get started.
I have something for you.
Oh, wow!
What's this?
It's kind of a Christmas
and a thank you gift.
I'm really happy that
you're tutoring me.
Go ahead, open it.
Oh, wow.
She's so beautiful.
To soar above the clouds
one must have faith.
It's my favorite quote
from Emily's Sky World Adventures.
Well, I think she's beautiful.
I'm going to put her on
the very top of my tree.
All right, let's get reading.
There's no such thing
as a child who can fly,
or is there?
Emily asked her mom every minute
of every day of every week,
"but why can't I fly?"
Perhaps if you try,
you may learn to fly.
So, off Emily went, every minute
of every day of every week,
she would run and
jump, and flap her arms.
That was great.
Oh, hey, Mac.
How are ya?
All right. How are you?
Would you mind changing a couple
of burnt out bulbs in my office?
Yeah, sure.
I just gotta do some photocopying first.
Is that your resume?
Are you looking for a new job?
Have you... checked your email?
Bette, what's going on?
I take it you read the memo.
But, this building has been
a library for half a century!
The foundation can't just
suddenly shut it down!
They can and they will.
Believe my, I've been
burning up the phones
for months trying to stop them.
Wait, you've known
about this for months?
I haven't told any of the staff yet,
because so far it's only been rumors
and I didn't want to
upset people unnecessarily.
This is a public library
in a private building.
The Shaughnessy Foundation
gave the city a 50-year,
dollar a year lease,
which expired last month.
They've decided not to renew it,
but to instead redevelop
this property as part
of a new condominium
and apartment complex.
So, what about a library
for the neighborhood?
Well, I doubt that's
a priority for them.
But, it's not right!
No, but it's legal.
This is more than just a library,
it's a watering hole for the community.
Do you know what happens in Africa
when a watering hole dries up?
Everything dies.
I've been head librarian for ten years,
and I've dealt with the
city on hundreds of issues.
I know how to get things done,
but I need a few good cards to play
and we've got nothing.
The thing is, they've got all
the legal advantages on their side.
The Shaughnessy Foundation is exercising
a right that is very clearly theirs.
We could do a fund-raiser.
The community would support us!
People love this building!
I... I grew up here.
This building, it's a
landmark in the neighborhood.
It doesn't matter.
The Foundation doesn't
need community approval.
They can do whatever they want.
There has to be a way that
we can change their minds.
Well, their plans are
pretty far along already.
Rosaleen Shaughnessy.
She took over the Foundation
when her husband died.
Her grandson lives in my building.
Do you know him?
Prince Tony?
He's got the penthouse, I
live in a rent-controlled
cubby hole on the third floor.
We might as well live
on separate planets,
but we do occasionally run
into each other in the lobby.
In fact, this morning we
even nodded at each other.
Oh... Hey! Hi!
Hi, I'm Cheri Jamison from 3A.
We've seen each other
in the lobby before.
Yeah, hi, I'm Tony Shaughnessy.
I know.
Uh... I was just
wondering if I could speak
with you for a moment.
Sure, sure.
But I kind of have my hands full here.
Do you mind coming up?
Don't worry, I'm harmless.
Of course.
Yes, great!
I can't believe all this exists
just a few stories above my head.
Come on, I'm sure your
apartment's just as nice.
Yeah, Architectural Digest
has just been nagging me
for that interview.
Did you decorate it yourself?
What, are you kidding me?
No, no, I leave that
to the professionals.
A woman named Cordelia
does my decorating.
Cordelia, no last name, Cordelia?
I see her name in
magazines all the time.
She's a really big deal.
She does all the movie
star homes, right?
Yeah, that's the one.
Well, she did a really nice job.
Do you, uh... do you want something?
Some tea or coffee, or...
Uh, just a water would be great.
It's funny that we
never really met before.
You know, since we live
in the same building.
Well, that's New York for you.
Not this neighborhood.
I've always felt a real
sense of community here.
Ever since I was kid, but you know that.
I mean, you grew up here, too.
Well, not really.
I spent most of the
year at boarding school.
My grandfather kind of insisted on it.
Yeah, but you're...
You're Tony Shaughnessy.
Your grandfather's name
is on every other building.
You're a part of the first
family of this community.
It's an honor.
I guess it is.
Your grandfather created
something wonderful.
That's, um, that's
actually why I'm here.
I'm the children's librarian
at the Shaughnessy Library.
I came to talk to you about
what a humongous mistake
it is for them to tear it down.
Thought maybe I could talk
to you and you could speak
with your grandmother
and get her to reconsider
extending the lease.
Silly me.
I thought I was just being
hit on by a very pretty girl.
But, uh... you're just
trying to save your job.
No! Yes!
I mean, no, it's not...
it's not just the job.
You don't need to worry.
You're not going to lose your job.
The city is going to reassign everybody
to other libraries. Your job is secure.
We went to great lengths to ensure that.
I work for Charles Harris.
Charles Harris...
Heartless developer, Charles Harris?
He's really not that bad.
This neighborhood, it needs a library.
And that's a matter for the city.
Which is dependent on what
the foundation decides.
The foundation has already decided.
No, you're missing the point.
The point is is that libraries
are a municipal matter,
and I'm sure they're going to
do right by this neighborhood.
After they get all the improvements
that my development's going to bring,
we're going to raise property values...
Hey, don't thank me now,
but this condo of yours here,
it's going to be worth double,
triple what it is now.
Yeah, but I wouldn't even
want to live here anymore.
Oh, come on.
See, now you're just being sentimental.
I grew up in that building.
You did?
My father wrote his
doctorial thesis there.
And he used to take me with him.
It was amazing.
Everyday we'd walk through
those doors together,
into this magical land filled with...
filled with everything
in the whole world.
It's where I learned to love books.
And reading.
It's the greatest
gift my father gave me.
And I think that every
child in this neighborhood
should experience that feeling.
Kids these days, they
get everything online.
Yeah, but it's not the same.
You can read Dickens on an e-book,
you get the words, but...
you're missing the music.
Cheri, life is about change.
You can't stop it.
Charles Dickens would agree with me.
Charles Dickens would
never tear down a library.
Look, I gotta tell you, there's nothing
that you can do to stop this.
I'm sorry.
Well, you don't know me very well.
I'm not letting this go.
Hold on a second...
Your job is secure, but
I wouldn't do anything
to jeopardize that.
If there's no Shaughnessy Library,
then I don't have a job.
I've got to try to save this.
I'm going to prove to
you how wrong you are.
Trust me, I've thought about this
and this is a very good idea.
Hold on a second...
We don't start bull-dozing
until the new year.
At least you have Christmas.
How very generous of
you, Ebenezer Scrooge.
You know, maybe when
you finish counting all
of your gold coins, you can come down
to the library on Christmas Eve.
That's when we distribute all of
the toys that have been donated.
The fire department
even brings Santa Claus.
You can see firsthand
how important we are
to this community.
And witness the joy on
the children's faces.
And then crush all of their
dreams when you announce
your great plan to
demolish their sanctuary
of imagination, knowledge and art.
For a condo.
He thinks the library is
just this archaic old building
filled with recyclable papers,
and I bet, he doesn't even recycle.
The problem is he never really
spent a lot of time here.
Or, in the neighborhood for that matter.
Private school.
The point is he doesn't
know what this building means
to an entire generation of people.
I mean, everything I know about art
and literature and
music, I learned here.
I would be a completely different person
if it weren't for this building.
Yet he does have a point.
eBooks are taking over
and most kids these days
haven't even heard of an encyclopedia,
much less opened one.
And with Google, why should they?
Okay, the internet can add to the mix,
but you're never going to be able
to replace physical books.
I mean...
You need to be able to see
and touch and hold and even
smell a book to get the
whole reading experience.
Too bad you can't convince
Tony Shaughnessy of that.
I know.
I still can't believe his grandmother
would let him tear it down.
She used to love this place.
I wonder if she still does.
Well, of course I'll miss it.
Not just the apartment,
but the whole neighborhood.
And you're just going to give
it up for a warmer climate?
I didn't come to this
easily, but you know,
I wake up every day and I look
for the sun dancing on the ceiling.
The neighbor's cat on the windowsill,
and that smiling face in the kitchen.
And Christmas' in Galway.
You know, when I was a young girl.
And they've all gone.
Everything just gets lost to time.
And anyway, the future
belongs to the next generation.
But you and your husband
created this neighborhood.
I mean, you have a legacy.
There's not many
people who can say that.
You know, it was my idea to convert
the mansion into the library.
My husband was convinced
that it was his idea,
but it really wasn't.
I knew it took a woman to think of that.
Turned out pretty well, didn't it?
It certainly did.
Yeah, I know...
It's just a wonderful place.
It's just so full of
promise and potential.
Cheri, I'd do anything
to save it if I could.
But you're the head of
the Shaughnessy Foundation.
The final decision is yours.
And I've decided.
Tony's been working on
this project for years,
and I'm not going to
take it away from him.
I'm sorry, lamb,
but family is more
important on this one.
That looks great.
Oh, dude, awesome.
Hey, Cheri!
Coming to check on us?
Well, I heard we had quite a bunch
of talented artists down here.
I hope I'm not interrupting.
Of course not. We're happy to show off.
Deirdre, how are things at the gallery?
I feel like I live there,
but I had to sneak away
for these guys.
I just got my first real Christmas tree,
and as I was decorating it,
I thought how a Christmas
tree is a representation -
not just of the holiday
- but of our lives.
You know, each one tells
a story of who we are.
Are you okay?
I think I just had an a-ha moment.
Thank you everyone for turning out
for the annual Shaughnessy
Library Toy Drive.
For those of you who don't know me,
I'm Cheri Jamison.
I'm the children's librarian here.
Actually, looking around,
most of you look familiar.
Which means you're
regulars. So, this year,
we are going to shake
things up a little bit.
We're going to have a contest.
A Christmas tree decorating contest.
And we want everyone
to decorate their tree
based on the theme
what the Shaughnessy
Library means to me.
Which means you could pick anything
- a literary theme,
or you could choose to decorate a tree
which represents something
that you've learnt here.
Maybe a skill, or a
craft, or even a language.
It's totally up to you.
We will assign you a tree
and then on Christmas Eve -
along with the toy drive
- we will light up
all of the trees and
then the night will end
at seven o'clock with the judging.
Are there any questions?
How many trees will there be?
And they'll be displayed
in the banquet room.
Uh, I just heard a
rumor that they're going
to tear down the library.
Well, that's why this
contest is so great.
It will be an opportunity
for us to show the community
how important the
library is to all of us.
The rumors are true.
There hasn't been an
official announcement yet,
but the Shaughnessy Library
is as of now scheduled
to be shut down and raised.
We're hoping for a miracle.
At least if we go, we
go in a blaze of glory.
That's right.
And there will be prizes
for all of the winners.
Bette and I will also
be decorating trees,
but don't worry, the staff is not a part
of the official competition.
Do you think this will really work?
I don't know, but that's
why this is so important.
We all love the library.
We can't just stand by
and watch it be destroyed.
Okay, so, uh, this
is the sign-up sheet.
If you could put your name
and contact information
and the theme of your
tree if you know it,
if not you can email me with it later.
Is there anything else?
Who's going to judge?
To be determined.
What are you doing here?
Is it not a public meeting?
But, for people with hearts,
not fungi with black souls.
That's cute.
Nice move, by the way.
Um, going to my grandmother.
Thank you.
You really won't leave
this alone, will you?
I tell you what, I'm going to do a tree,
because I love competition,
and I'm pretty sure that
I'm going to beat you.
Oh, not a chance.
Not a chance, she says.
You're on.
You're on.
Signup sheet is, uh?
Oh, hi.
I remember you from
the computer lab, right?
I loaned you a pen.
I'm Artie.
I know.
You're the artist.
Did I tell you that?
I just know.
I signed up to do a tree,
but I have no idea what to do.
I've got some great ideas
for an electronic display,
but I'm not really the
creative professional.
Well, I'm more of an amateur myself.
I work at a gallery in the village.
Well, maybe we could work together.
I studied here, so technology's
going to be my theme.
A collaboration...
I'd love to.
When do you think we can get to work?
Really? Oh.
Okay, I don't know,
um... tomorrow afternoon,
I've got the equipment in my apartment.
Okay, great, your place.
Around four o'clock?
I'm right around the corner.
I'll see you at four.
See you then.
Twice in one day.
I didn't think anybody ran
into each other in New York.
What, you're not still mad at me
for entering into the contest?
No, you know what?
I am mad at you for mocking my contest
by signing up for a
tree, but I am furious
with you for tearing down our library.
Wow! Dramatic.
It is low to taint Christmas
with your malicious lies.
What were you planning on?
Putting a little devil at the
top of your Christmas tree?
Did you not mastermind this entire thing
to have my grandmother
see all the pretty trees
and get all teary and
sentimental, and then
cancel her permission for redevelopment?
I'm just trying to bring
a little perspective
to how important this building is.
You don't have to tell me
about how important this building is.
I know how important this building is.
This building is my grandfather's
crowning achievement.
Oh, then why are you tearing it down?
Change is difficult for people,
but you should know that Jane Eyre.
We would still be living in caves
if people didn't push things forward.
I know change is scary,
but it's completely necessary.
You are betraying your
grandfather's legacy.
Let's just talk about
what's really going on here.
See, I think you're afraid that
your cushy job is going to change,
so you've turned this into a crusade.
See, that is just wrong.
You know, you're just...
You're half, half as
clever as you think you are.
That's still twice as clever as you.
My goodness...
Tony, darling, who are
you quarreling with?
Oh... Oh, that's Cheri, the librarian.
She's waged war on me.
On you? Tony, that's absurd.
I've never met anybody so stubborn.
See, she's upset with me
because I've entered into
this Christmas tree decorating contest.
You're decorating?
Well, that's...
No, no, no, no,
it's nothing like what you do.
Oh... You flatter me.
You are such a gentleman.
You know what? I'd be delighted.
You're going to decorate
a Christmas tree?
Isn't that beneath you?
Don't you have a reputation to uphold?
My reputation is built
on making people happy.
Making you happy.
How much would this cost me?
Let's negotiate. Over lunch?
Hi, Charlie.
I need you to have a
security crew on standby.
I've moved up the demolition date.
It's December 26th now.
I want you to be prepared
to empty the building out
of anything that could be left behind.
Wow. Why?
That's a week and a
half ahead of schedule.
It's going to screw everything up.
The publicity machine will
be down for the holidays.
Everybody will be drinking
eggnog and singing carols.
The library will be dust
before their New Year's
hangovers wear off.
Then we've avoided any negative press.
The supreme art of war is
to subdue your enemy without fighting.
You're not getting
nostalgic on me, are you?
You know what nostalgia is?
It's just a fondness for the past.
It's as dead as the words
on the pages in those books.
And the library is just a
graveyard for those words.
We're building for the future.
For the living. Don't forget that.
Who is it?
Tony Shaughnessy.
Don't worry. I come in peace.
Were you hoping I was asleep
so you could smother me with a pillow?
Ha. Maybe.
I was just thinking about what you said,
and I would like you to know that
I am not betraying my
grandfather's legacy...
I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that.
I was upset. It was totally out of line.
No, no. This is my fault.
This is my fault for suggesting that
you have an ulterior motive
for holding the contest.
You're right. I do.
Coffee truce?
I'll put a pot on.
You know, it's weird,
it's like, this is my home,
but still I feel like
I don't know it all.
That's the trouble with boarding school.
I was really, really
envious of all you guys.
Yeah, because you could do
whatever you wanted to do.
You could study whatever
you wanted to study,
you could go wherever you wanted to go.
It wasn't quite as carefree as all that.
But it was compared to me.
I was born into the family business.
My grandfather stapled an application
to Harvard business school to my crib.
What, you didn't want to
go into the family business?
Yeah, sure, I guess. I don't know.
Come on, you're such a huge success.
Am I?
Okay, what is your
definition of success?
Um... I don't know.
I guess living your passion every day.
And helping other
people and enjoying life.
You are a little bit of a Pollyanna.
I'm sorry, but you know.
What about that thing,
it's called money?
Do what you love and
the money will follow.
I've always believed
that successful people
attract money.
It's not money that makes you a success.
That's really sweet.
What's your idea of success?
Well, money!
What did you expect me to say?
I'm a Shaughnessy.
We have a bottom line to uphold.
We have a reputation to keep.
Nothing but first class all the way.
Well, you have a lot of money
so you must be very happy.
Don't you think I'm happy?
Why do you care what I think?
I should go.
Uh, thank you for the coffee.
So, uh, if I need to talk to you...
If I have any questions
about the contest...
I'll, uh...
I'll call you at the library.
Yeah, um...
Yeah, you should do that.
I'll see myself out.
Do that.
Excuse me?
Can you tell me where
the top of the tree is?
Isn't she beautiful?
She's amazing.
Um, fairytale Christmas tree.
Close. Fantasy.
It's my favorite kind of story.
I figure I can make a couple
dozen of these by Christmas.
So much detail.
Would it be cheating if I asked some
of our patrons to help me?
No, not at all.
I mean, we're not really
part of the competition.
Put me down for one fantasy tree.
Oh, you haven't figured
out your theme yet.
No. Not yet.
I'm still searching.
Do you see the irony in this?
I'll get it.
I just need to be inspired by something.
I have a feeling the library will help.
How are the others doing?
Mack, our janitor and wannabe chef
is doing a Christmas foods tree.
He's researching vintage recipes...
Paul, can I ask you a question?
Sure, Mack.
You ever had calves foot jelly?
What's that?
You take a couple of calves feet,
boil them down
- jelly.
No, I've never had calves foot jelly.
What on earth are you reading?
Victorian cookbook for the holidays.
Thinking of trying out
a couple of recipes.
How do brains balls sound to you?
It sounds like Hannibal
Lector is your mentor.
Broiled kidneys... Pigeon compote.
Okay, stop... Please.
All right.
How about some bubble and squeak?
Jelly bouillion and mutton sausage.
Come on!
You know what, maybe
stick with desserts.
I guess Victorians
had stronger stomachs.
See ya.
Would you look at that...
Candied duck foot web.
Kind of like potato chips.
Deirdre and Artie, they have
the technology, but no theme.
But it's state of the art technology.
Technology can only help us
express the theme we choose.
It is not a theme in itself.
The lights are cool.
Yeah, but what does it mean?
I mean, behind every great
creation is a purpose.
Last year I put up a tree in here
using all light-emitting diodes.
I didn't even use a real tree at all.
We have to use a tree.
It's one of the rules.
I'm just saying it's superfluous.
I could do it without one.
Not the point.
The tree is the palate for our vision.
So, no lights?
Lights are in, but we need a theme.
Oh, man...
What did you learn at the library?
Electronics and computer science.
And we're back at square one...
How about you?
Hmmm... People.
I mean, I'm new to the city,
so volunteering at the library
helped me to meet new friends.
Really? Someone like you, eh?
I can't believe you'd have any problem.
I think people would fall
over themselves to meet you.
Well, I wanted to meet...
People who care about things.
And people who are curious enough
about the world around
them that they'll spend time
getting off their butts
and learning stuff.
And have you met the
right kind of people there?
I've met all sorts of
wonderful people there.
The Martinsons don't
have a theme listed.
No, I know.
I was surprised they even signed up.
I feel like every time you
see them they're all busy
and stressed out and
rushing off somewhere.
Courier knives.
Too old fashioned.
Star Wars!
What does that have
to do with the library?
Come on.
We borrowed the DVDs from the library.
Then what does that have
to do with Christmas?
The theme is what the
library means to us?
Okay, we take movies out all the time,
so movie themes are a possibility.
All right, romance,
suger plums and mistletoe.
A vampire Christmas!
Yeah, a fresh blanket of snow.
Werewolves in garlands.
And those little twinkle lights.
A blood red moon.
Once again, you're not listening to me.
Could you please take this seriously?
The only reason I agreed
to read the Twilight series
with you is because we
got the book for free.
No werewolves, no vampires.
Well, you come up with some ideas.
Courier knives have been
around for more than a century.
It's a classic.
Well, it's also boring.
We need something
new, something fresh...
Oh, like vampires and werewolves.
Come on!
Well, at least it's popular.
Well, tell me your ideas then.
Yeah, I'm gonna think of something!
Where are you going?
Somewhere quiet.
I'm trying to read.
That's your temper.
That's you.
What's his royal highness' theme?
Ok, everybody loves what
you did with my loft.
This time, I want you
to do the same thing,
except with the tree.
Okay, wait.
I need to know what you
want this tree to say.
What I want it to say, I want it to say,
"hey, look at me! I
just won first prize!"
Is there a theme?
Listen, this whole
contest was dreamed up
by this children's librarian,
in order to get my grandmother
to be more emotional about the library.
We need to make her
equally as emotional,
but keep her on our side.
We need to show her that
we respect her values,
but that the world's changing
and we need to keep up with it.
The same librarian you had
the shouting match with?
She's very... passionate.
So you want old with new.
That sounds great.
Maybe antique ornaments
combined with contemporary effects.
I love it.
Let's brainstorm over dinner.
Just make this the most
amazing Christmas tree
in the history of
Christmas trees. All right?
This should be enough to get started.
You let me know if you need any more.
This is going to be quite the tree.
Do you have a judge?
But I have an idea.
I think maybe it's just
gonna be Artie's tree.
What's wrong?
Oh... well... we keep disagreeing.
I want one thing, he wants another.
You're gonna work it out.
We're pretty far apart.
Hey, take a deep breath.
Start over.
Christmas is about
bringing people together.
Not driving them apart.
I guess.
Believe me, I'm right.
I'm tempted.
We would be so honored
if you would judge.
It's difficult for me
to get around anymore.
We could make it super-easy for you.
We would pick you up and drop you off,
and it'll only take an hour.
It would mean so much to everyone.
I mean, you're the first
lady of this neighborhood.
Your neighbors would
love the opportunity
to spend your last Christmas
in New York with you.
Well, it would be a wonderful send-off.
So, you'll do it?
Oh, dear.
I know to you the library's the future.
I'm so sorry that I
dragged you into the middle
of this battle between me and Tony.
But, I am not giving up.
What's that you're playing with?
Oh, it's St. Anthony.
My father gave it to me.
He's the patron saint of lost things.
I guess my dad assumed
one day I'd lose my mind.
He's also the patron saint of miracles.
Well, I sure could use
a miracle right now.
Well, you know, maybe all
things are not lost to time.
Well, you really got
my Tony all sparked up.
You know, I've never seen
another lady do that to him before.
It reminds me of Teddy
and I in our early days.
Well, Tony and I aren't
exactly a love story.
It's more like Stephen King novel.
I had the same gumption that you have.
That's how I got Teddy
to fall in love with me.
I'll do it.
You will?
Thank you!
It's going to be perfect.
Oh, thank you so much.
Thank you.
Mack, hi.
Um, you got a second?
Of course.
Yeah, sit down.
You know, uh, the whole threat
of losing this place has
kind of got me thinking.
It's got us all racing
around, senseless.
It's funny, you know, I came to New York
years ago to follow my dream.
What's your dream?
Well, don't laugh...
To be a chef.
Why would I laugh at that?
Well, I started out as a dishwasher,
which led to another
job as a dishwasher,
which eventually led to the
washer of a whole building.
And just like that...
Twenty years passed me by.
I'm so sorry.
Nah, it's good.
This place has been good to me.
Maybe the threat of losing it
is the kick in the pants I need.
Are you thinking about
going back to school?
I'm thinking of a food truck.
A sandwich truck to be more specific.
During the holidays I could serve
cranberry and turkey Paninis,
and for the vegetarians out there,
mashed potato and gravy sandwiches.
Mashed potato and gravy sandwiches?
I think you're onto something here.
It could be the Christmas dinner truck.
Christmas dinner all year 'round!
I love it.
Thank you.
I've got it!
I thought I had it.
We could use light as a
raw expression of hope.
And of creation and of Christmas.
What are you talking about?
Light! Sunlight!
Without the sun we'd have nothing.
I mean, everything would just be...
It's science leading to technology.
This is what you wanted all along.
I just really thought that
the lights looked cool.
Was that...
Are we, uh...
I think we're stuck.
We're stuck.
Yes, hello, uh, hi.
We appear to be stuck in the elevator.
Yes, yes, that's the address.
No, no, no, we're fine.
We're all fine in here
just please send someone immediately.
Yes, immediately.
Thank you.
Thank you.
It's not a big deal.
No, I know.
It's, yeah, it's fine.
We're gonna be fine.
It's got all sorts of automatic locks
and breaks, we're not gonna fall.
Yeah, I know.
I was involved in refurbishing
the building, so...
I hired the elevator installer and, uh,
he seemed like he
knew what he was doing.
Seemed like a guy who passed
all the tests and stuff, so...
I think it's, uh... it's gonna be...
Are you claustrophobic?
Is it hot in here?
I just, I feel like...
Hey, hey, hey...
Just relax.
I'm fine.
You okay?
- Yeah.
Just keep breathing.
Yup. Yeah.
On a scale of one to ten,
how much anxiety are
you feeling right now?
Uh... it's about a...
Yeah, it's about a ten.
Hey, follow my fingers
with your eyes, okay?
Yup, mmhmm.
Just focus on the movement.
Keep breathing.
Okay, I, uh... Okay, okay, okay.
Okay, where are you now?
Uh, amazingly, um, about a three.
Look at that...
Um, hey, that was, uh...
that was great, thank you.
For doing that. Whatever...
Whatever that was.
Eye movement desensitization
and reprocessing.
The movement helps to break you
from the traumatic experience.
It helps with anxiety.
Where'd you learn that?
Wait, don't tell me.
The library.
Not all of us can afford
a world-class education.
Yeah, well, I paid
my way through college
doing construction
work every summer, so...
'Cause I've got some shelves upstairs
that I need to put up.
You've got shelves. Well... sure.
Consider it done.
You're going to come up to my apartment
and put up shelves?
Lucky me.
Lucky you.
I'm gonna take the stairs, so...
Oh. Right.
Everything in each one
of these units is going
to be completely state of the art.
We're putting washer-dryers
in each one of them.
Sounds wonderful!
You think so?
It's amazing how things have changed.
My first apartment,
everybody on the floor
had to use the same bathroom.
Not in these.
Each of these is going to have at least
two full bathrooms, and
they're going to be beautiful.
They're going to be beautiful.
You remind me so much
of your grandfather.
You don't think he'd be upset
that I'm tearing down
the library, do you?
I haven't been back to
the library since he died.
I was afraid it would be too painful.
He'd be so proud of you.
You think so?
Oh, yes, because you're
going after what you want.
He'd appreciate that.
Yes, he loved you very much.
But, so did your father.
I know, I know you don't
like talking about him.
There's nothing to talk about.
He left.
I barely remember him.
You see, your grandfather
was a great man.
And he was determined that his children,
and his children's children
would not live in poverty.
I mean, he had a great work ethic
and he passed it onto his family.
Do you remember him
spending time with you?
He worked hard for his family.
Tony, if you're running from the past
and looking to the future,
it doesn't leave much
room for the present.
Your father, he was a
sweet, wonderful, loving man.
Who could not stand
up to your grandfather.
Ted dominated him.
He forced him into the business,
pushed him into achieving
what he had achieved,
and then when your mother died,
it was just too much for him.
He shouldn't have left me.
Got a couple more trees up.
I'm starting to feel
like a real forest ranger.
Join me.
Hans Christian Andersen.
Research for my tree.
But his stories are wonderful.
Did you know he visited
Dickens in London?
He was supposed to stay for three days.
He ends up staying for six weeks.
In the end, the family would
wake up at dawn everyday,
escape out the back door so they
wouldn't have to entertain him.
Where did you hear this?
It was in some Dickens biography I read.
Do you read a lot of biographies?
I read whatever I can get my hands on.
It's one of the perks of working here.
I get to see all the new stuff
as it comes out and
I grab it right away.
Would you know anything about fantasy?
Well, it's not really my
strong suit, but some, yeah.
Maybe you could give me a hand.
You look exhausted.
Yeah, I'm having the worst day.
Where's Emily?
Oh, she's studying with Cheri.
It's a program where
good readers pair up
with kids who need help.
Is she reading Emily Sky
World Adventures again?
Is there any other book?
Ok, what are we going to do about
this whole Christmas
tree decoration contest?
I mean, do you think we should withdraw?
We haven't even started yet.
You don't have time, I don't have time.
I mean, we don't even have a theme.
I definitely don't have time.
You're right.
We should probably back out.
Hey, Mack.
What are you doing here so late?
Oh, it's better than staying at home
in the apartment alone, you know?
What about you? Late night?
Still looking for inspiration.
Still no theme, huh?
I was going stir-crazy
sitting in my apartment.
I thought maybe a change
of scene might help.
Well, the library's
hardly a change of scenery.
You practically live here.
why don't you go home,
get some rest, get a good night's sleep
and something will come
to you before you know it.
You know what?
You're right.
Maybe I can dream something up.
A shamrock.
It's... It's perfect!
Why didn't I think of this before?
You are a lifesaver.
Thank you.
Thank you.
Thank you, thank you,
thank you, thank you.
Lifesaver... hm.
That's pretty cool.
I found it.
Check it out.
Huh, like a certain matriarch.
Very clever.
Or, is it sneaky?
Maybe a little bit of both.
Ok, I'll admit at first I
was like cut to the chase,
give Mrs. Shaughnessy what she wants,
but then I started
researching and look at this...
Christmas is huge there.
Folk art, carols, ceremonies.
How can you possibly create a tree out
of this in two weeks?
Why not?
Woven from oak straw,
each elaborate decoration
takes several days to create.
You still need to learn how to weave.
Well, I'm not going
to make the ornaments.
I'll find them.
This is New York, you
can get anything here.
Yes, we can, but it usually
comes with a price tag.
How are you gonna pay?
I'll beg.
I'll tell the owner that it's going
to help save the library.
I'll wheedle.
I'm an excellent wheedler.
You are that.
Where are you going?
I'm taking Emily to her
reading class at the library.
I think we made a mistake.
The tree?
Sweetheart, go get your mittens.
Look, Emily's been moping around
ever since we told her.
Look, we may not have
enough time to do all
of the things that we want
to do, or even enough time
to do half of the things
that we have to do...
But Emily loves that library.
More importantly, we met there.
It's where we fell in love.
Cheri's right, we can't give up.
We have to at least try.
You're an amazing man.
I love you.
I love you.
Guess who is back
in the Christmas tree
decoration business?
I can't wait to tell Cheri!
We gotta go before I'm late!
Emily loves that place.
Everything about it.
You know what?
Maybe that's the theme.
You know, um, childhood,
children, uh, fairytales.
You know, everything
that is child-related.
Ok, I am going to go get some books
while Emily is in her class.
I can think of a dozen ways
we can go with this.
Maybe toys?
Yes, yes!
Emily's already outgrown
a bunch of her own toys,
and maybe her play buddies
can lend us some of theirs.
We can donate them to the toy drive
at the end of the night.
Okay, okay, great.
Um, okay, put a sticky on anything that
is even remotely interesting.
This just might work.
I think it will.
I need to stop on the way.
Did you find ornaments for your tree?
I think so.
I found a book about Irish
crystal at the library.
There's a shop I want to check out.
Good luck, Cheri.
Fingers crossed.
I'm hoping that seeing a tree decorated
with memories of her life in Ireland
will help her remember her heritage.
Everything that her husband created.
I knew him, you know.
Mr. Shaughnessy?
They both were in my civics class.
We had to take it to become citizens.
Teddy had a vision and
he never let anybody
stand in the way of it.
That runs in the family.
Are you a friend of the family?
More like a foe.
Tony and I know each other.
Oh, that poor boy.
Did you know that his
father abandoned the family
shortly after his wife died?
I didn't know that.
I knew Tony was raised
by his grandparents,
but I wasn't sure why.
They kept things very quiet.
I don't think anybody
knows what really happened.
I do know it was
terribly hard on Rosaleen.
Ted could always jump
back into his business.
Which he did.
Sometimes when a man is determined
to accomplish something
big, the family pays for it.
It's ironic that his grandson's the one
tearing it all down.
Do you think you could help us?
I really need to
impress Mrs. Shaughnessy.
Come with me.
Irish crystal.
Most of it from before the war.
It's so beautiful.
It all looks so expensive.
Oh, they are.
I can let you borrow
them for the one night.
To save the library.
That's wonderful!
Don't tell my son.
He's very much into -
what does he call it -
oh! The bottom line.
How about I come by with some volunteers
on Christmas eve and pick it all up?
But until then...
not a word.
Oh, um, I don't suppose
there's any chance that
it would all be sold by Christmas?
Oh, no.
We sell four, maybe five pieces a year.
Teddy would want this.
I feel it in my heart.
Is this a bad time?
A bad time...?
You know, for shelf-building.
I didn't think you were serious.
Well, why wouldn't I be?
I'm very, very serious
about these kinds of things.
Oh, okay.
Well, then please, come in.
Thank you.
So, this is it, huh?
You really don't have to do this,
I was just joking.
Listen, I have you down in my calendar
for shelf-building, and if you cancel
without 24-hours notice,
I'm gonna be forced
to charge you for a service call.
That's just how it works, it's policy.
Ok, if you insist.
Can I at least get you a glass of wine?
Yes. Yes, you may.
You really are good at this.
Why is that funny to you?
I told you I did construction for years.
I specialized in shelves.
You have a gift.
I wouldn't go that far.
It's more of a hobby.
I don't know, it's very
professional looking.
Maybe carpentry is your calling.
Well, thank you.
No, thank you.
So, what is your deal?
How did you come to be a librarian?
Well, actually, originally,
I thought I was going
to become a college
professor, like my dad.
But once I got to college,
I became this voracious reader.
Spent all my spare time in the library
and I decided to major
in library sciences.
Library sciences is not a real thing.
You just made that up.
It's a real thing.
You totally made that up.
No, I didn't.
What'd your dad say?
Was he disappointed?
He wasn't.
He was actually incredibly supportive.
I think he probably would have liked it
if I'd followed his
path, but he was okay.
I got this summer job
as a library intern,
tutoring kids and working
on this literacy program.
I loved it.
I worked with this
one first-grader, Elie.
He and I worked together
for a week until one day
he read all of The Fly Went By to me.
He got to the last page
and he closed that book,
and he hugged it to himself, and said,
"this is the best book
in the whole world!"
And that was it?
That was it.
I found my calling.
That's cool.
It's nice that you know what you want.
Oh, come on.
You're the big hotshot success.
You keep saying that, but
it's not actually true.
Yeah, but this project...
Has taken four years.
Hasn't made a dime for my company.
I thought you were...
No, I'm just a humble employee.
Until the deal closes.
Then I'll be less humble.
Well, I believe you can do anything
you put your mind to.
Takes one to know one.
You know...
Just because I didn't
spend a lot of time
growing up here, doesn't mean
I don't care about the neighborhood.
Yeah, but it does mean
you don't know much about it.
No, that's not true.
Oh, come on!
I've never seen you in the library
until we announced the contest.
As a matter of fact,
other than the lobby
in this building, I
don't think I've seen
you anywhere in this neighborhood.
Not a restaurant, or in a store...
I've never seen you at the park.
Ok, but you do know that
I work very long hours.
I think the only reason you
signed up for this contest
is it's what your
grandfather would've done.
I think when you get a vision,
you don't let anyone stand in your way.
I'm fascinated.
Why don't you tell me more about myself?
The library was your grandfather's
greatest achievement.
I think deep down you
probably resent it,
because deep down you
don't think you'll ever
be able to achieve
anything that beautiful.
Your grandfather pushed
you to do big things,
but I don't think you think
you'll be able to do it.
You seem to have me all figured out.
I'm sorry, I...
No, no...
That was way out of line...
It's great.
I shouldn't have said that.
No, no, it's okay.
It's good to get these
things out in the open.
Anyway, I hope you enjoy your shelves.
Thank you. They're perfect.
Look, I'm really sorry
that things are...
the way they are.
It's inevitable.
Given the circumstances.
On the count of 3...
One, two...
You're brilliant.
I'm sorry...
I just got carried away by the tree...
No, no, nothing to apologize for,
believe me.
Remember how you were talking about,
you know, meeting
friends at the library?
Well, maybe you're right.
I mean, I met you there.
That's right.
And I think of you as a friend.
Just a friend?
I'm sorry.
I'm not very good at this.
No, it's fine.
It's my mistake.
Why do I always do this?
I feel so stupid.
I have to go.
No, please! Wait!
It's okay.
I get it.
No! You don't.
Look, electronics and
computers, I understand.
I can build an apache h-base,
open-source database, built on top
of an HDFS in one hour.
Okay, I can switch out
your magnetic hard drive
with a solid state
system with RAM drive SSS
faster than you can change
your pantyhose, but...
I don't know how to talk to you.
You are talking to me.
I don't even know what happened.
Everything suddenly
changed, just like that.
Well, you can't expect things
to be normal between you.
You're at opposite
ends of a battlefield.
But we were doing all right.
I mean, everything was actually... nice.
He's nice.
Considering he wants to
tear down this building.
I know, but still.
You're not smitten, are you?
Because you sound smitten.
I don't even know what
it means to be smitten.
It means you had a
nice evening with a man
who might destroy
everything you treasure,
and even though you parted on bad terms,
you are still getting wistful
when you think about him!
You are, aren't you?
Not smitten.
It's written all over your face.
You know it's impossible, don't you?
Of course.
One of you has to lose, Cheri.
If the library stays open,
he will never talk to you again.
And if he wins?
Believe me, you will despise him
when you see this
building being demolished.
You're right.
I mean, of course.
You're right, but, um, I don't even want
to see him again so...
It's fine.
Well, that's smart of you.
Stay focused on saving the library.
The heart can complicate things.
Totally focused.
I mean, Tony and I
may be friendly, but...
I love this library.
I'm looking for a specialty item.
It's the 24th at five o'clock.
I think it would make
a wonderful photo-op,
or video-op,
or news-op...
Whatever you call them.
Okay, we will see you then.
Channel 8 is going to cover the contest.
Three days from now and the whole city
will see what we do here.
Well, I only need one person to see.
Don't hold your breath.
At least I got Mrs. Shaughnessy
to judge the contest.
Yes, but let's not
forget, Tony Shaughnessy
is the jerk who is the
source of this problem.
He's not a jerk, he just...
needs to see how wrong
he is about this place.
And hopefully, Christmas
eve will help with that.
It's going to take a miracle.
That's what I'm hoping for.
I have desk duty.
We'll chat later, okay?
I was just about to call you!
I'm afraid there's been a problem.
My son has sold all the crystal
and the antique ornaments.
A woman came in and
just bought everything.
How is that possible?
She is a very well-known designer.
But to buy that much crystal,
I've never seen such a thing.
And the antique ornaments on top of it.
It makes no sense.
Well, is there any
way you could stall her
until after the contest?
Oh, she's taken all of it already.
What's her name?
Maybe I could speak with her.
With no last name?
That's right.
She never gave us a last name.
I know her.
Thank you, Mrs. O'Hannelin.
We tried.
What are you going to
do about your tree, dear?
Tony, it's Cheri!
What is this? A raid?
Who's decorating your tree?
Is there some rule that says
I have to decorate my own tree?
I told you I leave
things to professionals.
Who's the professional tree decorator?
The woman who did my
apartment, remember?
You really will do
anything to win, won't you?
What's wrong with that?
You really don't have any idea?
No. Enlighten me.
You had her spy on me, steal my idea
and everything I've worked for.
Spy on you?
I don't know what you're talking about.
I wrote a cheque
and asked her to design me a tree.
With that one signature you and Cordelia
killed all my hopes and dreams.
You don't care about
anyone but yourself, do you?
I knew this was going to be a battle,
but I thought at least
you'd have the decency
to fight fair.
Fight fair?
What do you call
recruiting my grandmother
to judge your stupid contest?
You call that fighting fair?
Her name's on the building, too.
Cheri, this is over.
No. It's not.
I invited the press on Christmas eve.
The people want and need this library,
and I'm going to prove it to you.
I'm going to expose you as
the scrooge that you are.
Excuse me?
You are nothing like your grandfather.
He built things.
You just destroy them.
You know, you can chain
yourself to the door
if it makes you feel better,
but I'm still tearing it down.
I've worked too long
and hard on this deal
to let some librarian stop
me from creating my legacy.
So, why don't you get your
calling somewhere else?
It's not going to be on my future.
When you're wrong, you are really wrong.
No, I totally understand.
We can just play it by ear.
Okay, bye.
What is it?
That was the Channel 8 news producer.
They're gonna try to make it, but...
We're competing for coverage
with a major snowstorm
that's coming our way.
That's terrible.
I guess.
What else is wrong?
I got into this huge fight with Tony.
We said some truly terrible
things to each other.
So you do care about him.
I don't even know what I feel.
I mean, one minute I want
to wring his stupid neck,
and the next...
You want to give him
a mad, passionate kiss
and rip his clothes off!
something like that.
That wasn't quite how I
was going to put it, but...
that's the general idea.
Oh, honey...
It doesn't even matter though.
I mean, he hates my guts.
Just everything is just
spiraling out of control.
Now this stupid snowstorm
is coming, and...
I mean, I don't even know what to do.
Tony's right, it's... it's all over.
Cheri, this was not all for nothing.
I mean, just look at what you've done.
People have come together
just to decorate our trees,
and they are loving every minute of it.
But if this doesn't work,
all those happy people
lose their library.
Well, then we still
have some great memories.
And this Christmas, these trees...
They're gonna top the list.
But it still won't save the library.
And I don't know what else I could do.
Have some faith, Cheri.
That's what Christmas is all about.
Hey, could you print me up a list
of the kids in our reading programs
and their parents' phone numbers?
I guess so.
Is this for the contest?
Is it still on?
I don't care if they're
predicting a hundred feet
of snow, I'm not canceling.
What changed your mind?
I decided to take the
advice of an angel.
Now, hurry up with that list.
I've only got two days to get this done.
Get what done?
Cheri, get what done?
"There's no such thing
"as a child who can fly.
"Or, is there?
"Emily asked her mom every minute,
"of every day of every week,
"but why can't I fly?
"Perhaps if you try,
you may learn to fly.
"So, off Emily went,
every minute of every day
"of every week, she would run
"and jump and flap her arms.
What's up, Miss Jamison?
I'm sorry to interrupt, guys.
Emily, I have a huge
favor I need to ask you.
Of course.
That's what Christmas is all about.
Don't you ever forget that.
Okay, here it is...
Maybe you can come by my office later,
we can practice together.
Thank you.
I really appreciate it.
I'll see you later.
Hi, Mack.
You're not nervous, are you?
No. A little.
Yes. Yes, I am.
Don't forget, employees
aren't part of the competition.
I-I know that. I know that.
It's just, um... This is a big deal.
You know?
Everyone has worked so hard, and I just
don't think my tree is decorated enough.
I mean, what if my lack of ornaments
costs us the library?
I mean, she might think
that the head librarian
has no imagination.
That's ridiculous.
Will these help?
Oh... they're exquisite.
Where on earth did you get them?
I scored them from an old
pawn shop in the neighborhood.
They're for you.
For me?
Well, because in my
fantasy land, you're...
You're the Queen.
Maybe we should put them on.
Yeah, okay.
Before it's too late.
I'll put them on the front, okay.
That's a good spot.
- Sorry...
You all right?
- Okay.
Where should we put her?
Right there. Yeah.
Up above?
- Okay.
Welcome to the 1st annual 12
trees of Christmas contest.
Please welcome our guest
judge, Rosaleen Shaughnessy.
I love fantasy stories. I always have.
They're what brought me to the library
when I was a little girl.
And do you believe that
fantasies come true?
Sometimes reality can
pleasantly surprise you.
We started coming here
before our daughter was born.
So, we learned about
childcare and raising children.
Since then the library's
been an important part
of her upbringing.
So, our tree represents a childhood.
Christmas as seen through
the eyes of a child.
My goodness...
I developed my interests in electronics
and digital equipment in the library.
I wouldn't have the job
I do today if it wasn't
for what I learned from being here.
I've gotten so many
things from the library.
Um, but I think of them all,
the one I treasure the most is love.
All right... There we go.
Just like we had in Galway.
Would you like to say
something about your tree?
I would.
This tree reflects the
rich Christmas tradition
of island, incorporating
traditional ornaments
with an element of Irish crystal.
My tree is about heritage.
It's about the importance of remembering
where you're from.
No matter where you start,
it does not determine
where you will go.
It's about having the courage
to make the right decisions.
And to be fearless.
It's about listening to your calling,
following your path
to create a foundation
of happiness for the younger
generation to flourish.
That's what we've always wanted,
for you to be happy.
You've become the man
that I've always dreamed
that you'd be.
Your father and your grandfather
would be so proud of you, as I am now.
I love you, Nana.
That's a victory.
You can thank me later.
You've really outdone yourself.
And not in a good way.
You wanted to win, and
I think we just did.
Not by sabotaging
someone's entry, come on.
You told me what you wanted.
I went out and got it.
Just like I always do.
And I used a little
finesse to make sure we won.
I never told you to cheat.
What you've done here is going
to cost me more than this contest.
Your services are no longer required,
I'm sorry.
Tony, there's more between
us than just decorating.
And you know that.
Go home, Cordelia.
I started out wanting to
make my tree a reflection
of my love of art, which I
learned here at the library.
And then I decided
to focus on Irish art.
Unfortunately, I hit a roadblock.
But, while I was researching Irish art,
I discovered there's an
entirely different aspect
of it that I could focus on.
And that's what I want to do now.
These children are all a
part of our literacy program.
They started out as reluctant readers
and now they're enthusiastic
and proficient ones.
And right at the top is Emily.
And she has prepared a
special carol for tonight.
I saw three
ships come sailing in,
on Christmas day,
on Christmas day.
I saw three ships
come sailing in,
on Christmas day in the morning.
And who was in those
ships all three,
on Christmas day,
on Christmas day.
And who was in those
ships all three,
on Christmas day in the morning.
Our savior Christ and his lady,
on Christmas day,
on Christmas day.
Our savior Christ and his lady,
on Christmas day in the morning.
And all the bells
on earth shall ring,
on Christmas day,
on Christmas day.
And all the bells
on earth shall ring,
on Christmas day in the morning.
On Christmas day in the morning.
I saw three ships...
Haven't heard that song in years.
We used to sing it on
Christmas eve in Galway.
It's all right, Nana.
No, Tony, it's not.
I wish I could just wave a wand around
and make everything all right.
I think I can make everything all right.
The foundation is
going to renew the lease
with the library with the city.
No, Tony.
You give up too much.
I realized just now what I'd be losing
if this project goes through.
The library stays.
After seeing this place firsthand...
I think you'd be crazy to tear it down.
We'll find another option.
Thank you.
I hope you never forget this Christmas.
I know I won't.
I don't think any of us will.
Thank you.
For the best Christmas
gift I've ever received.
You know what?
We could do a lot with this place.
Yes, we could.
It really was the perfect night.
I'm glad everything
worked out the way it did.
Me too.
Thank you.
Merry Christmas.