Barry (2016) Movie Script

"Dear son,
It was such a pleasant surprise
to hear from you after so long.
I am fine
and doing all those things which you know
are expected of me in this country.
I am glad
that you are making a fresh start.
There is an old saying
that there are things
a man can only learn in a city.
I have found this to be true.
But do not be distracted, my son.
Focus on your studies. Your goals.
We will discuss both when you visit.
I shall do better from now on
to try to keep in contact with you.
We are beginning our final descent
into John F. Kennedy Airport.
Thank you for flying with us
and have a pleasant night
in New York City.
Due to police activity,
the next stop on this local train
will be 125th Street.
Get out of the street!
Can I help you?
Ah, no. No...
I'm fine, thanks. Ah...
- Just admiring the campus.
- You got some ID?
This is a private campus.
You can't just wander in here.
- Uh... I'm a student.
- I just transferred here. I...
I need to see your student ID.
I haven't got one yet.
I'm sorry, pal.
I'm gonna have to ask you to move along.
Don't make me tell you again,
I have a gun,
and I will shoot you in the face!
- Saleem?
- It's Barry from Occidental.
We... we met a few months back,
at Amir's party?
I'm sorry to knock on your door like this,
but you're the only person I--
Barry, my brother!
Come. Come. Come in. Come in. Yes.
Damn, bro! You moving in or what?
I got locked out of my place.
My roommate Will isn't in town--
Nah, don't worry, man.
I just got off work.
Barry, Rachel. Rachel, Barry.
- Raquel. That's what I said.
- It's nice to meet you, Raquel.
She looked better a few hours ago.
If you know what I mean.
Here, take a beer. Give me that.
I'll give you the grand tour.
This is where the magic happens.
This is the parlor room.
Come on. Sit, sit, sit.
Anyway, welcome to New York.
The issue today is not the Republicans,
it is the republic.
Today it is not the Democrats,
it is the democracy.
There's a crisis
in the character of our nation.
- You ready?
- It's creating tension between the races,
Uh, five minutes.
tension between the sexes.
We are not each other's problem.
We are each other's solution.
Yo, college boy.
Lemme get a square.
- Yo! You need one?
- Yeah.
Let me get another one.
- Got a light, college?
- Of course, Andre.
- What up?
- Hey.
So, what you studying up there, huh?
- A little bit of everything.
- Hmm.
You best take economics or some shit.
Get that paper and get gone.
I just got here.
But you ain't stayin'.
See you around.
- Later.
- Later.
"Justice is nothing else
than the interest of the stronger."
Now, we all know
the Greeks loved symbols, right?
They have since antiquity.
So what, then, was the great symbol
of democracy in Plato's time?
Uh, yes. Um... Barry.
That's correct. The raised hand.
One man, one vote. All of it very public.
But when you imagine those raised hands,
class, you have to remember,
every one of them held a spear.
That's what "majority rule" meant.
So that begs the question,
is governmental rule always supported
by the threat of violence?
- Yes, Thad?
- It has to be.
- Otherwise, what authority would it have?
- But, what about the will of the people?
- Sure. The people with the most spears.
- But there's more to it than that.
I mean, we sacrifice some of our,
um, independence to a government
in return for security.
And a kind of collective wisdom.
Security's just another word
for "the most spears."
Every time there was a vote,
the minority didn't count up the spears
and, uh, decide not to revolt.
Once you make the deal
to have a government,
that government takes on
another kind of authority.
What, like a moral authority?
- Well--
- So Ronald Reagan has moral authority?
Of course he does!
He was elected in a landslide!
Okay, if there's one thing
Ronald Reagan definitely does not have,
it's moral authority.
Sure has a great head of hair, though.
Sorry, just kidding. Continue.
Let me put it like this--
if the states had voted on slavery,
we would have lost the vote.
So, yeah,
at that point, moral authority kicks in
to, uh, defend the minority
against the will of the people.
And that's when the spears come out.
Yeah, I watched the news last night too,
Jesse Jackson
said that thing about slavery.
Yeah, he did. And he's right.
Seriously? The guy
who hugged Yasser Arafat is right?
One thing has nothing to do
with the other.
All right, guys. Reel it back in.
Remember, Plato.
Can I ask a question, though?
Why's everything
always gotta be about slavery?
to finance any wage hikes...
Is anyone there?
In national news,
President Reagan ordered the Coast Guard
to intercept any ships suspected
of carrying Haitian refugees
Come on, Barry.
Jesus Christ.
- How'd you get in here?
- Barry, my brother.
Do you have any ganja?
My head is pounding.
Check the ashtray.
What are you doing here?
This whole university experience
has changed my life, bro.
You're a bartender, Saleem.
So, what brings you to the West Side?
Last night at the West End,
I met this beautiful bird.
Sociology student from Minnesota.
Porcelain features, tits out to here.
I mean, we wandered the city all night...
But when the time came, I was unable
to gain entrance to her dormitory.
Uh, so to speak.
So to speak.
So I stopped at the establishment
on the corner for a morning beer,
after which I decided to pop up here
for a smoke.
And to borrow some cab fare home,
if possible?
You know, this, this might sound crazy,
but just bear with me.
Do you think there
might be some kind of, uh, correlation
between your constantly buying alcohol
and, uh, cocaine
and the fact that you're always broke?
It's an interesting theory,
but I just don't see it.
Speaking of booze and blow,
my friend, Daphne,
is having a party tonight. Ah!
Daphne is a burlesque dancer.
All her friends are burlesque dancers.
I don't have to spell it out for you,
do I, Barry?
What do you say, I take a nap,
stay here, and we go together around nine?
I promised Will
I'd go to a party on campus.
They will never accept us, Barry.
I know you know this, my brother.
- I don't know. I wanna think they will.
- You think too much.
That's your problem.
That's why you never get laid!
- I'm not trying to just get laid.
- Okay, see what I mean?
Fucking shit, man.
Look, if I were you...
Hello there,
rich white girl. My name is Barry.
I, uh, just transferred here from Africa.
I'm a deep, brooding man
who likes to, uh...
write poems about the mysteries
of the human condition.
Now, would you like to,
uh, unzip my pants, or shall I?"
That's pretty good.
I didn't know you could do me.
Oh, well,
the trick is to sound just white enough.
Okay, fuck you, Saleem.
- Barry! Barry! I love you!
- Yeah, yeah.
That's all right. That's all right.
Y'all need all the help y'all can get
right about now.
Y'all need all the help.
Check ball.
Believe me, playboy,
it's about to go down.
This can play right here.
- You got him? Switch.
- Get on him!
Guess what? That's game, baby.
- That's game.
- Uh-huh.
- Next!
- Nice, PJ.
Get these boys outta here, man.
I got "Invisible Man."
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
You like that, Invisible?
That's my shot, baby.
I can stick that all day.
I won't let you shoot.
This boy got you, PJ.
Hey, it's all right, player. Yeah.
You ain't gonna get too many more
of them now that I know you a lefty.
You better counter
with what you got, man.
- Oh!
- Ooh!
Big man!
What's wrong with you, man?
- Hey, come on, come on.
- You don't know me, homeboy.
You touch me again,
I'll knock your fuckin' head off.
Y'all ball.
What you got, Invisible? Ball up!
I'm on you all day, baby.
Like flies on shit, baby.
What's up?
Well, Jack Kerouac went here,
know what I mean?
- Allen Ginsberg. Uh, Paul Robeson.
- Where are those guys now?
Uh... Dead. Kerouac is, for sure.
- Who is Paul Robeson again?
- Where is that scene?
'Cause it seems
like it doesn't exist.
Or, well,
maybe I'm just not cool enough to find it.
C'mon, dude, you just--
we're new, you know? It takes time.
You ready to do this?
- I know these guys.
- Cool.
- All right.
- I'll go get us some beers.
Sara said she was gonna be here
like, half an hour ago.
- Well, there you go.
- I'm over it.
So, uh, what are our options?
- Rum and Coke?
- That's gross.
- Or Jack.
- Gross.
Well, not Jack.
It's an extremely cheap whiskey.
- I'll take one of those.
- Okay, sure.
- Three?
- Uh, sure. Yeah.
- Okay.
- Okay.
- Cheers.
- Cheers.
Hey, keg stand time.
Get the fuck in here.
No, no, no.
- Let's go.
- Yup, there we go.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,
eight, nine, ten, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15.
All right, who's next?
Let's go.
You know what? Let him go. Here we go.
He said he was coming.
- Yeah, I guess you get to plan.
- Thanks.
Hey. You're in my Poli-Sci class.
- Julie, right?
- Yeah.
Yeah, I'm good with names.
Uh, Barry.
Hi. Uh, and this is Charlotte.
Uh, "moral authority."
- That better not catch on.
- Oh, I, uh, think it just did.
It's an inside joke.
- Hey, Julie, what's up?
- So, uh, where are you from?
Hawaii. Indonesia. Kenya. Take your pick.
Really? Um... Ni vizuri kukutana na wewe.
- Uh-huh.
Really? What?
In front of all these people?
I mean, you're very pretty,
and I'm flattered, but--
- No, that's not I was trying to say--
- I'm just messing with you.
I have no idea what you just said.
I've never been to Kenya,
but I take it you have.
Nairobi... for five days,
on my junior year abroad.
It's beautiful.
I'm going this summer to, um,
to visit my dad.
- You comin' in?
- I just came out.
Um... Bad?
Uh, it's, uh...
It's not my scene.
So, what is your scene?
Um, I'm still trying to figure that out.
You like to dance?
- Taxi. Taxi, yo!
- Where are you taking me?
Trust me, come on. Hey.
So, what do you think?
- This is great!
- Stick with me, kid.
Could I have a beer and a special?
Hey, baby.
You're adorable.
Who are you here with?
- A friend.
- Do you guys like to party?
Define "party."
- Have you ever seen this?
- No.
It's a New York thing.
I dunno, man, it's--
It feels provincial up here somehow.
Like it's a bubble.
I mean, most of these kids,
their futures are already set.
Like, um, that guy's gonna be
an econ major, and then Wall Street.
He thinks he wants to study history,
but everything's pushing him
in another direction.
His, um...
His family, his background,
what people expect of him.
So, does he really even have free will?
You gotta take Moral Philosophy, man,
I'm telling you.
We talk about this stuff all day.
I read somewhere that, uh, college
isn't about learning.
It's about training.
Training for what?
To, uh...
To want what you don't need,
and to leave who you are at the door.
But we're supposed to leave who we are
at the door. That's the point.
Well, some people can't leave
who they are at the door. I mean...
You know I'm the only Black person
in four of my five classes.
But you're half white, too.
What's that supposed to mean?
Just that... you can fit in anywhere.
- Right?
- I fit in nowhere, Will.
- I did meet this girl last night.
- Yeah?
The perception of many people
is that the city is dirtier, crime is up,
transportation's breaking down...
- Am I late?
- No, it's just started. C'mon.
No, I'm relying on
the common sense of the people.
I'm hesitant to judge
whether or not we've accomplished
the first part of what had to be done
with this fiscal stability
- so as to bring it to the point
- True.
where we could enhance the services
and we have, in fact,
improved some of the services
in the first four years...
The biggest city in America,
and this guy gets to run
as a Democrat and a Republican?
It's a fucking joke.
Well, nobody's watching except us.
- So... why are we watching?
- It's our civic duty.
You know, politics is bullshit.
You don't really believe that, do you?
Yeah. I mean, kinda.
I mean, come on, the president's an actor.
So how does change happen, then?
- Or do you not believe in change, either?
- I believe in art.
I believe in... I don't know.
People creating change.
I just don't believe in--
If you say "the system,"
I'm going to scream.
- The system.
- Oh, you're one of them!
- What? A socialist?
- A poet!
I am a poet, actually.
You're cute.
What's cute about me?
Your politics.
Hmm. My politics... are cute.
I'll take that.
...only when we have the money to do it.
Then I'm asking you to come to the polls,
'cause my opponent is apathy.
People have to know that
if you want me back, come to the polls
because the people who don't like me
are gonna rush to the polls
and that is the message that I'm imploring
everybody out there to consider.
Come on, loosen up.
It's just for a second, I promise.
- Hey, wanna race?
- What?
- Let's race to that tree.
- You don't wanna race me. I'm fast.
- Me too. And I don't smoke a pack a day.
- I'll pass.
- What? Afraid to lose to a girl?
- I'm not afraid of losing at all.
So you'll talk shit,
but you won't back it up?
Come on, Barry, show me what you got.
On your mark, get set, go!
I win.
- Another racist myth, debunked.
- You're pretty fast.
Game point.
Good play.
What you got, homeboy?
You got something?
That's game.
Who got next?
I gotta get to class.
You're breaking up the dynasty?
'Fraid so.
Shoot to replace him?
Nice feed, Invisible.
Ball up.
I've never been in here.
Best food on campus.
B- school got that dough.
I used to eat in here
even when I was an undergrad.
So what, finish business school
and then, uh, Wall Street?
That's your plan?
Only Black guy at your firm.
I mean,
racist jokes around the water cooler?
Workplace discrimination lawsuit.
Seven-figure settlement.
Yeah, fair enough.
- Did you always wanna be a finance guy?
- I'm from the Grant Houses.
You know where that's at?
122nd and Lenox.
It's about five blocks away,
but it's a totally different world.
I didn't come this far to not make money.
I hear that.
What about you? Where you from?
Well, Honolulu, mostly.
- No shit? They got brothers in Hawaii?
- Yeah, a few.
I grew up in Indonesia for a while, too.
My mother married a guy from Jakarta.
You're a whole different type
of motherfucker, B.
You do realize that, right?
I mean, I barely left New York.
Yeah, but-- I mean, it's New York.
Please. New York ain't shit.
One dollar, here. One dollar.
Help the homeless.
Uh, how much?
That's two dollars.
Here you go, brother.
Ah, thank you, my brother.
And I envy you for that one.
Why's that?
'Cause you 'bout to read that
for the first time.
After you finish, slide back by
and let me know how you liked it.
- Yes, sir.
- All right.
Yo! Invisible!
- What's up, Ali?
- Yo! You going by the courts today?
Yo, this dude got the ill baby skyhook.
Like Magic.
- Gonna try. You?
- For sure. Maybe 'round two.
- Cool. I'll catch you there.
- All right then. Be easy, homeboy.
Like Sunday morning.
"Can the prey be taken from the mighty,
or the captives of a tyrant rescued?"
Now what that means is,
can we, the Lost Tribe of Israel,
reclaim what is rightfully ours
from the cave-dwelling white devils
that raped our ancestors, stole our land,
and dispersed the true children of God
across the globe?
- Read!
- Hey!
I ain't... no devil.
This is not the words of Jesus Christ.
Shut your mouth, cave bitch!
Yes, you are a cave bitch.
Do you know... what Jesus Christ
called the white woman in the Bible?
A female dog.
And what is a female dog?
Don't be afraid to say it, brother.
That's right.
A bitch.
That's what Jesus Christ called you
in the Bible.
How come you're using
a King James Bible?
- What?
- Why that edition?
I thought King James
was a white devil.
Here's King James right here.
Take a good look.
He looks like Billy Dee Williams
if you'd ask me.
If you say so, brother.
Now, you might ask...
How did the Lost Tribes of Israel
become lost? Well, I'll tell you.
How about her?
- No way.
- Why not?
She's trying way too hard.
Zero self-esteem.
- So she'd sleep with me.
- Um, probably?
- So that's a yes, then.
- No. Big time no.
I don't think you understand the nature
of this conversation, Charlotte.
I don't really think I want to.
Looks like your boyfriend's off
on Pluto again.
Um... Ground Control to Barry.
Oh, sorry. I was, um...
- I was thinking...
- No.
- Hey, Will.
- Hi, guys. What's up?
Hey, Willy. What's this?
Buy one, get two free?
You wanna join us?
Uh... No, thanks.
I think we're gonna check out
the band downstairs.
- Okay. Well, um, I'll see you around.
- Yeah. See you, man.
So, what are you guys doing
for Thanksgiving? Hmm?
Anybody here dig,
uh, turkey tikka masala?
I'm going to Connecticut.
You guys are welcome to come with me.
You can meet the clown
my sister's marrying.
Well, I love clowns.
Let's go to Connecticut, Barry.
I'm, um... I'm allergic to Connecticut.
I break out into these,
um, gross white hives.
Uh-- Besides, I...
I'm sure your, uh, family
would love you showing up
with a Pakistani and a Black guy.
Oh, well, you're not that black, Barry.
No, seriously.
They really wanna meet you.
Uh, I wanna meet them too.
But maybe we should do it
on a more neutral ground.
Someplace with a lot of witnesses.
I'm gonna go talk to that girl
with low self-esteem.
Look, my parents are gonna love you.
I'm sure some of their very best friends
are Black.
They are, actually.
- I was--
- I know what you were doing.
The question is...
why you feel the need to do it.
Look, I just really want
to spend Thanksgiving with you.
Maybe we could do it here, a day early.
And then, I can go
to Connecticut by myself
if you don't wanna come with me.
I'd like that.
...from the campus.
They're students. I'm not... really old.
Now, here we have, if you'd like,
a basic epistemological principle
that we must bear in mind.
A genuine knowledge
involves cognitive union
and overcoming
our estrangement or alienation.
And this applies, I suppose,
to all spheres of our knowledge.
I sometimes argue
that, to be a good scientist...
So, I'm a little worried about Saleem
being in charge of Thanksgiving.
I mean, can he even cook?
Everything about that man is a mystery,
including these ingredients.
Uh, yeah, what is "ghee"?
And, um...
you may have gotten out
of Thanksgiving with my family,
but that means I'm gonna have
to take you to my sister's wedding.
- Hmm...
- And you're gonna have fun.
You know I'm gonna cause a scene
at that wedding.
- Oh, really?
- Mm.
Once folks get a load
of my moves on the dance floor...
Be a miracle.
- Aloha!- Aloha!
- Mom?
- Surprise!
- Surprise!
You're supposed to be in Jakarta.
I had a conference in LA.
Oh, my word. And here I am!
- Here she is!
- My beauty.
Uh... Mom.
- Uh... This is, uh, Charlotte.
- Charlotte.
Hello. Such a pleasure to meet you, Mrs.--
Ann. Just Ann, honey.
It's nice to meet you, too.
- Charlotte, some peas, please.
- Mm-hm.
Barry, honey, do you have a salad bowl?
- Does this work?
- How about a knife?
How about this?
- Not exactly Julia Child, huh?
- Well, Saleem's sort of a child.
Oh, yeah?
Well, you're sort of a poopy-head.
Is the atmosphere around here
always so intellectually charged?
- Oh, yeah.
- Well, you know, as a feminist,
I would never endorse this sort
of retrograde patriarchal paradigm
that would paint you as a sort
of domesticating, civilizing presence
- in this household.
- Oh, no. Of course not.
But if I did, I would say
that you have got your hands full
with these two knuckleheads.
Damn, Barry.
Your mom can talk some shit.
So, do we get to hear
some embarrassing stories
about Barry or what?
I'm sorry to be dull,
but I don't really have any.
He was so easy.
Even his birth was easy.
I was 19 at that time,
so that wasn't the easiest, and...
Neither was his dad, but what can I say?
He's my darling boy.
What wasn't easy about his dad?
Barry barely talks about him.
All I know is that he's some kind
of high-up government official.
I only met him once.
He showed up in Hawaii
when I was ten and...
tried to tell me how to live my life.
That's not true.
He was around when you were little.
He's a lovely man. We just
weren't well-suited for each other.
- Hmm.
- Hmm.
Mm, 'cause he had another family
in Kenya, Mom. He lied to you.
It's a little more complicated than that.
But we don't have to talk about it.
Okay. She always defends him.
You know what?
He gave me you.
But Barry must've had
some terrible haircuts, at least.
This is true. I used to cut his hair.
Mm. That's something
no white woman should do.
Probably not.
Your mom is awesome.
Yeah, she's, uh... something, all right.
No, seriously...
How many girls from Kansas end up working
at the Ford Foundation in Indonesia?
first, you marry an Indonesian guy.
Then you... move to Indonesia
and, uh, realize you need a job.
That's not fair.
Yeah. No... no, it's not.
What are you gonna do with her tomorrow?
Most of the rest of the world
is having Thanksgiving.
Yeah, well...
I'm sure she'll have some ideas.
Is something wrong, honey?
No. I'm just thinking about the movie.
About you and the movie.
And what was it you loved so much?
When you first saw it, I mean.
It was beautiful.
It was so exotic.
I'd never seen anything like it.
Like Dad?
- Your dad hasn't written, has he?
- Why?
Well, he's fallen on hard times,
I'm afraid.
What happened?
You know, it's all second-hand,
but he's not working, and...
When he's not working,
he has a tendency to drink.
He invited me to visit.
That is fantastic.
Oh, honey,
there's a whole part of you there
just waiting to be discovered.
This isn't Roots, Mom.
This land was made
For you and me
Okay, now, this takes me back.
This land is your land
This land is my land,
From California...
- Right on, brother.
- To the New York island
That is so corny, Mom.
From the redwood forests
To the Gulf Stream waters
This land was made for you and me
How are you, Barry?
How are you, really?
- Honestly?
- Yeah.
I don't know.
Well, sometimes, I feel like I wanna...
breathe in everything
New York has to offer.
Just make it all mine.
Just... And other times,
it all seems like one... big distraction.
People seem like distractions.
I feel like I could... just...
stop talking and...
I don't know, just...
And become a monk.
And, uh, read and write, and...
think for a year.
Don't do that.
You know, every time
I open my mouth in class, it's like...
I'm supposed to speak
on behalf of all Black people.
Meanwhile, I, uh...
I quit going
to Black Student Union meetings
I didn't feel like I belong there either.
The world is a big place, honey.
You'll find your way.
- Oh.
- Ooh.
Oh... Oh...
Come on, now. Oh!
Go up, big man! Go up.
Come on, and let's see. Let's see.
- Oh!
- That's a good-ass turn.
Ladies and gentlemen,
young Ralph Ellison in the house tonight!
I know you can't see him.
Uncover your eyes, he already invisible.
- Oh!
- Oh!
Oh, my goodness.
That's what I'm talkin' about, baby!
That's the reason
they call him the Invisible Man.
Let me give you
some real-deal Saleem advice.
You want to impress her parents?
Order for her. Don't ask her
what she wants, just, um...
I'll have the lobster
and a magnum of your finest champagne.
And the lady will have, uh... a salad,
with a glass of water... with lemon.
Or... how about
whatever they ask you,
you start every answer
with, um, "Shit, motherfucker."
So... "Barry, New York must be
quite the change from Hawaii."
"Shit, motherfucker, it sure is!"
"Have you started to think
about the summer yet, Barry?"
"Shit, motherfucker. I'm considering
taking an internship at a law firm."
These are, uh... They're all great ideas.
- Damn it.
- Here, here. Let me.
You know, there's a lot about me
that you don't know, my brother.
For example, I used to work at a bank
for almost two years.
And I never, ever--
Watch your chin.
Robbed the place. There.
- Another beer for Daddy.
- Thanks.
Would you hand me a towel, please?
- Here you go.
- Thank you.
Oh, there he is.
- Bill Baughman. Pleasure to meet you.
- Uh, Barry.
- My wife, Kathy.
- It's so nice to meet you.
- We've heard so much about you.
- It's a pleasure to meet you.
Thank you.
Barry, I feel we're at a little bit
of a disadvantage
because Charlotte got to spend
the whole day with your mother
and all we get with you is a dinner.
Also, Barry's mother is way cooler
than you two could ever be.
Oh, I don't doubt it.
Well, I'm prepared to make
the most of the time we do have.
I mean, I'll eat two entres,
if I have to.
You, um... You know,
I have to admit, it's, um...
It's kinda strange for me
to be at the Yale Club.
I'm from a Harvard family.
- I didn't know that.
- That... makes two of us?
Yes, sir. My, uh, father did
his Ph.D. in Economics there,
on a full scholarship,
as a matter of fact.
- Well, he must be brilliant.
- Oh, he is something.
I mean, Dad was born in Kenya.
And he and my mother met
when he was studying
at the University of Hawaii.
The program
that brought him over was, uh...
was funded by the likes of, uh...
Harry Belafonte and Sidney Poitier,
uh, and the Kennedys.
How remarkable. And, uh, where is he now?
Uh... Dad's back in Nairobi.
I believe his title
is Senior Government Economist.
- Hmm.
- Such a fascinating country.
Are you able to visit often?
I plan on going soon.
Well, as soon as, uh...
Charlotte teaches me
a little more Swahili.
Oh... after I finish teaching him
about New York City politics.
- That could take a while.
- And some alcohol.
Well, uh... I hear you're something
of a political organizer, Mr. Baughman.
Oh, no. I wouldn't say that.
I've arranged bail for some organizers.
Represented the unions for years.
But nowadays, I spend more time
raising money for candidates.
It's not something
I particularly enjoy, but...
it's more important than ever.
Pretty soon, our only real game plan
might be to outspend the bad guys.
Oh, and, uh, hope all that money
doesn't turn everybody into bad guys. Hmm.
- Something like that.
- Oh, come on, Dad.
I've seen those pictures of you
and your ponytail
marching for civil rights.
- Sure, but everybody did that.
- Oh, not everybody.
Of course, not everybody.
But everybody we knew in our little...
liberal enclave.
So, how'd your, uh, parents...
feel about your, uh, you know,
"little liberal enclave"?
Mine... not so good. Bill's...
But, you know, without their support,
I don't know if I'd have had the courage
to spend my career
fighting the good fight.
I might've gone corporate. Who knows?
Now, I've got a good friend
who's making that decision right now.
He's from the Grant Houses,
if you, uh, know where those are.
- No, I don't believe so. No.
- Harlem.
It's one of the biggest
public housing projects in the city.
Now, he says he, um, didn't make it
to Columbia not to earn money.
Well, that's very understandable.
Yeah. I don't know. It's, um...
I think he's gonna be miserable.
But, hey... But what do I know?
Aside from that fact
that these lamb chops sound amazing.
Mm, well, I couldn't agree more.
- Can we give you a lift back to school?
- Uh, no, thanks. We're going downtown.
- Oh, we are?
- Yes. You... need to dance.
- You think--
- You think you need to teach me.
- I need to teach you?
- Are you kidding?
- That girl was positively afraid of you.
- I wasn't...
Hey, good evening
to you two lovely lovebirds.
Y'all had a good night?
- Mm-hm.
- Great night.
You got a square, college?
- Uh, it's my last one, boss.
- Come on, give me a bust-down, then.
Keep it. One of these days,
I'ma make you buy me a pack.
Whoa. Whoa, whoa, whoa.
What you just try to say to my mans?
You gonna make him?
Who the fuck is you, nigga?
Coo! Relax, Milton!
Now, who the fuck said
you could walk down my block?
Yo! This kid is cool, Milt.
- Chill out, bro.
- He don't look cool to me.
- Nigga look like a motherfuckin' pussy.
- Man, I live here.
Fuck you. You... ain't from here.
I didn't say I was from here.
I said I live here, okay?
- One forty-two.
- I'm from here!
- You understand? Born and bred.
- Okay, that's great.
- Good for you.
- The fuck is you're walking away from me?
- What you gonna do now, nigga?
- Yo, yo!
Yo, Milt! Chill out, man.
Yo, put that away!
Yo! Mira, don't do some shit
you gonna regret!
Go on, man.
Where are you taking me?
Hey, brother, you got
some of that, uh, Egyptian Musk?
Incense or oil?
Uh, oil.
- One, three, five.
- I'll take a three.
- Thank you.
- Thank you.
You like that?
That reminds me of my friend, Idris.
He always used to wear Egyptian Musk.
Hey, uh, try this. It's called Black Love.
Drives the sisters crazy.
I'm good, thanks.
- Who's Idris?
- From junior year abroad?
- He goes to Emory.
- Right.
Good day, Miss Lady.
- Hello.
- How are you?
Hey, my man. Good to see you.
How did you like that Du Bois
I hit you with?
Deep. What else you got for me?
Let me see here.
I think I know just what you need.
- How about this? Ralph. Invisible Man.
- I already read it.
Oh. I'm impressed.
- You know, he lives not far from here.
- Oh, yeah?
Yeah. We've been waiting
on a sequel for a long time.
Maybe he said everything he needed to.
He might've dropped a little too much
truth for them in this one, baby.
Oh, I love this book. Have you read this?
Ah, you got good taste, Miss Lady.
James Baldwin.
- Thank you.
- No, I haven't.
I'm buying it for you, then. How much?
- Um, that's on me.
- Thank you.
- That's so sweet.
- My pleasure. Yeah.
You guys enjoy your day.
No, thank you.
Hey, can we have lunch at Sylvia's?
- Where is that?
- You've never been to Sylvia's?
- No, Charlotte.
- I've never been to Sylvia's.
Trust me, you're gonna love it.
It's right over there.
- Men far away. And there...
- Yeah. Sylvia's it is.
- the midst of this land.
- And he cursed Canaan.
- Ten bucks for a plate of fried chicken?
- It's so good, though.
I guess these people don't mind.
In here stuffing their faces
while folks panhandle right outside.
- That's any restaurant.
- M&G, six blocks away.
Same menu, it's four bucks a plate.
Are you mad at me or something?
Have you noticed
you're the only white person in here?
No, I'm not.
- And besides, why does that matter?
- Nobody's looking at you.
They're looking at me.
Uh, the brother with the...
uh... white girl on his arm.
Who? Who, Barry?
You don't see it.
- So show me.
- I can't.
You're not used to being visible.
I'm a woman.
You think I don't get stares? Catcalls?
- That's not what I mean.
- And besides,
I thought the whole problem
was being invisible.
You all ready to order?
You wanna come up?
No, I have...
I think I'm gonna go play some ball.
- I'm sorry.
- It's okay.
- Call me later?
- Yeah, I will.
I love you.
Thank you.
Uh... Brick.
Hey, yo, Invis,
you should come out with us tonight.
What's on the agenda?
- Your girl Tisha's having a thing.
- Tisha? Really?
You don't need to be taking Invis
to nobody ghetto-ass house party.
- Why not?
- Why not?
Hey. This motherfucker's from Indonesia
and Hawaii and shit, man.
You know what them niggas like, bro.
Take him to a luau or somethin'.
How's a brother supposed to get culture?
Y'all serious?
Whatever. Maybe y'all see, man.
"Thank you"?
What are you, Han Solo or some shit?
Han didn't say "thank you."
He said, uh, "I know."
'Cause that's the coolest way to say it.
I fucked up, huh?
Well, if you love the sister, you did.
Why would she say it, then?
After the worst two hours
of our whole relationship?
Let me think. That's exactly why.
If she says it to you again,
you either gotta say it back or walk off.
There he is.
- My man.
- It's about time.
- Hell, yeah.
- Let's crack these babies.
What's up, man?
All right.
That's good.
Look alive, Invisible.
And welcome to this episode
of "Project Safari."
Now, in the projects-- Excuse us, ladies.
In the projects,
the elevators go out all the time.
Now, if you're somebody
like my man, Mr. Jim here--
- How you doin', Mr. Jim?
- How you doin', boy?
Or if I'm some old lady with grocery bags
and I'm trying to get all the way up
to the tenth floor, you're wondering...
- how do you get up there?
- You ask a nice young man for help.
If you can find one.
Hell, you sit your ass down on a bench
and wait for them to fix them shits.
Hell, yeah.
All right, now. Right through here,
we have what you call
the "pissy staircase."
For obvious reasons.
I'm sure one of your five senses
has picked up as to why.
Now, I would advise you
not to touch nothin'
'cause you could get
the itchies and scratchies.
It's hard to get rid of that.
You wanna see some more,
you wanna go to the party?
What you wanna do?
- More.
- More?
Come on, man, I got ladies waiting for me.
You know damn well
ain't nobody waiting on you.
He lying.
Come on, we'll see y'all later.
Come on, B. Right this way. Now...
The projects ain't all fun and games.
Matter of fact, far from it.
But you do gotta keep
a sense of adventure.
That's why police hate coming up here
because you'll never know
what's behind door number one,
behind door number two...
Matter of fact, you...
you know what a "shooting gallery" is, B?
Well, take a look
behind door number three.
It ain't for guns.
Then you got motherfuckers like me.
Same environment, same everything.
And what the fuck, right?
But, I guess life is what you make it.
One thing to remember, though,
through all of this.
This is government housing.
This is how the government
does our people.
So, this concludes our episode
of "Project Safari."
I've been your host,
and I need another beer.
This one is gone. Excuse us.
Right this way.
All right!
How you doing? You look amazing.
So, what you think?
It's beautiful.
Whatever you say, B.
Enjoy yourself, though.
- Hey.
- Hey.
- How you doin', PJ?
- I'm good, Ms. Denise.
- I'm fair for a square. How you doing?
- Good.
Yo, Invisible! Come over here,
come over here, come over here.
I got some people I want you to meet.
This is my girl Tisha, this is her crib.
- Barry.
- Welcome, yeah.
This is Lila. Keep your hands off.
And Ms. Denise.
- Barry. Nice to meet you.
- Nice to meet you, too.
Mm. Nice.
Wanna dance?
So... where are you from?
I live on 109th and Amsterdam. You?
Eighth floor.
What's living on the eighth floor like?
it's pretty much exactly like this.
Why, you wanna see it?
I wanna see everything.
- So... why do they call you "Invisible"?
- It's because I'm spying.
I probably shouldn't have told you that,
but I'm getting a good vibe.
- You seem trustworthy.
- Who do you work for?
I'm freelance.
Sometimes I spy
just for my own, um, edification.
I think that's called a Peeping Tom.
Oh, shit!
- What the fuck, Reggie?
- That's my girl you talkin' slick to.
- Why are you over here?
- Who is he?
- That's my friend.
- Who is he?
- Yes.
- Oh, yeah?
I love truth, man.
Yo, Barry. Come over here.
Come here, my man.
He's drunk.
- What's wrong?
- What happened to your face, B?
- Some asshole hit me.
- I'll get some ice.
Who hit you? What'd you do to get hit?
Here, use this. It's cold.
That was supposed to be for your face.
- I gotta go.
- No, you don't gotta go.
- Sit down.
- Nah.
This ain't my scene.
Hey! You looking for a date?
Hey. Hey.
- You got some ID?
- I'm a student here.
- No, I don't have to show you anything.
- You giving me a problem?
- We got a problem here?
- Well, I don't see you ID'ing them.
So, what's so special about me, huh?
- I'm gonna ask you one more time--
- Hey! Hey, it's cool.
I know this guy.
He goes here.
He's a student. It's all right.
It's okay.
No open containers.
Jesus, man. What,
are you trying to get arrested or what?
I'm trying to mind
my own fucking business.
Okay, whatever, man.
Let's just get you home.
You drink a beer in front of him
and he doesn't do shit.
I walk on the campus, and I'm a criminal?
What's with that, huh, Thad?
I don't know man.
I'm fuckin' hammered right now.
Whoa, whoa.
- What happened to your face?
- Somebody punched it.
- I'm not that surprised.
- Oh, fuck you.
You got another beer?
- You sure that's a good idea?
- Yes, I am.
All right.
You know why everything's about slavery?
Why, Barry?
That's why you're an asshole.
You're all right, Thad.
You're an asshole...
but you're all right.
Hey, it's 1981, dude! Get over it already!
- Oh, my God. You're bleeding.
- I don't want to talk.
- What happened to you?
- It's nothing.
Where were you tonight?
At a party. In Harlem.
Your favorite place.
I'm going to clean you up.
- Here.
- Don't.
What's the matter with you?
Why do you like me, Charlotte?
What do you mean?
- I like you 'cause I like you.
- No. Really.
Why do you like me?
Who wouldn't like that guy?
That's not me, Charlotte.
It was a joke.
Just because you went to Kenya
for five days,
doesn't mean you understand who I am.
You know what your problem is, Barry?
You think that this... is all about you.
Good night.
- What happened to your face?
- I don't wanna talk about it.
Man, listen, um...
one of the guys at Robbie's suite
just moved out, so...
there's a room open.
- You should take it.
- Are you sure? I...
I know you can afford the rent
by yourself.
- I just thought--
- I'm ready for a change anyway.
No, I...
I can move in with Saleem.
I just feel isolated from campus,
you know?
It's cool, Will. I get it.
- We'll still hang out, right?
- Yeah. Of course.
Barry, my brother.
We live in a shithole, you know that?
I mean, an actual place for shitting.
All afternoon, I am watching
white people bring their dogs here
to shit.
And they just walk away.
They just leave the shit.
Look, look, here comes another one now.
Hey! Clean up after your filthy animal,
you filthy animal!
Bedtime for Saleem. Come on. Come on.
Come on.
I like that girl Charlotte, Barry.
She called a bit earlier.
She said she was gonna pick you up
at noon for the wedding.
- Hey, Barry?
- Yeah?
You're becoming a real bore.
- Hello?
- Barry? Is that you?
Yes. Who's this?
Yes, Barry, this is your Aunt Jane,
in Nairobi.
Can you hear me?
Uh, barely. I'm sorry, my aunt who?
Aunt Jane.
Listen, Barry, your father is dead.
He is killed in a car accident.
Hello? Can you hear me?
I said your father is dead.
Please call your uncle in Boston
and tell him.
I cannot talk now, okay, Barry?
I will try to call you again.
Okay, so, don't laugh, but I'm thinking
of taking a job on Wall Street.
Daddy's got some friends.
I'm just sick of being broke, man.
It's getting lame. What do you think?
Oh, that's it?
No "you'll fit in great with the rest
of those cokehead assholes"?
No "if you actually stood for anything,
I'd call you a sellout"?
Ah, you're becoming a real bore,
have I mentioned that?
It's like musical chairs or--
I mean, you turn 25, the music stops,
and whoever you're dating, you marry?
It's not just my sister, either.
It's all of her friends--
I don't see them for a few months,
and then, bam,
they show up with rocks on their fingers
and some random guy in tow.
And it's like, "Wow, what a coincidence."
You all just happened
to meet your soulmates
within six months of each other?
What are the odds?"
You feel really far away.
Not what I meant.
Do you hate weddings or something?
No, I've never even been to a wedding,
except for my mother's.
Well, would you ever want to get married?
I don't mean now.
I don't even mean to me.
I just mean... is it something
you could see yourself doing someday?
No, it's, uh, not an institution
I put much faith in.
I mean, my parents were married five times
between them. Or six.
And I'm not even sure about my father.
Well... are you nervous
about meeting my family?
- Why? Do I look nervous to you?
- No.
You look like you're going into battle.
All right, big smiles!
Now, hold it! Hold it!
One more. Just one more.
Come on.
Great. All right, all the fellas.
Yeah, Barry, come. Come join us.
- You stand with Martin, here.
- Hello.
Hey, George.
There's the man.
- Yep, okay.
- It's kind of an uptight crowd, huh?
I'm kind of an uptight guy.
Great! Now all the ladies.
It's the second time this week.
The second.
Listen, you have to take it easy.
You know they're not like back home.
Hello, sir.
- Can I get you something?
- No, no. I'm just, um, I'm killing time.
How you guys doing today?
Fine, sir.
- My name's Barry.
- Fred.
- Where you guys from?
- We are Ugandan.
I thought so.
My, uh... father is from Kenya.
Here you go.
Yeah. He...
He died recently.
My condolences to you and to your family.
Mine as well.
Yeah, thanks.
Yeah. It was today, actually.
I, uh...
I got a phone call this morning
from, uh, from an aunt I never met.
- Actually, you know what?
- I will have a drink.
- What do you got back there?
- It's a full bar, sir.
I'll have a...
I'll have a vodka.
How you doing?
- Yeah, this is my boyfriend, Barry.
- Oh, hi.
- Barry.
- Good to meet you.
- Barry, this is Donna.
- Barry.
- Ted.
- Barry.
- And Emily.
- Pleasure.
- Oh, and this is my cousin, Melissa.
- Barry.
Barry, there's someone
I'm dying to introduce you to.
- Just when I thought I'd met everyone.
- Hmm.
Barry, meet James and Grace Lee.
Two of the most brilliant,
committed writers and activists
- I have ever had the pleasure to know.
- Well, I'm honored to meet you.
Grace Lee tried to convince Malcolm X
to run for Senate in '64.
- It almost worked, too.
- Wow.
I thought you might want to meet them.
Especially because of your parents.
Have a seat, Barry.
Are your parents in the movement?
Uh, no. Not really.
They're, uh, different races.
I'm guessing that's what Kathy meant.
Ah, I see.
My mom's from Kansas,
and my dad's from Kenya.
I've only met him once, though.
I grew up in Jakarta and Honolulu,
and spent a little time in California,
then, well, I ended up here.
That's some kinda gumbo.
You know what that makes you,
young brother?
No, sir. I don't.
I really, really don't.
It makes you American.
And you don't ever have to choose.
You know, I see you both
sitting here together, in love.
- Yes, sir.
- And full of wisdom.
And I can't help but think that...
the two of you must have been
through all kinds of hell together.
Doing what you've done.
And looking how you look.
You take the baton
from the ones who've come before,
and you carry it as far as you can.
And then you hand it off.
That's life. A beautiful struggle.
Dance with me.
"Dear Dad,
I am sorry it has taken me so long
to write you back.
I have thought of you
and your invitation to visit every day.
Sometimes I feel
that there's a part of me I do not know,
and when I am feeling optimistic,
I find myself believing that you hold
the answers I am looking for.
My journey so far has not been
as dramatic as yours,
but I'd like to think I can imagine
what you felt when you arrived in Hawaii.
Perhaps even what you felt
when you met Mom.
I suppose I have spent these last months
in New York trying to find my way.
Maybe that is all any of us do.
I look forward to discussing
these things with you, Dad.
It is high time we got to know each other.
Love, Barack."
You wanna play Horse?
- Sure.
- You can shoot first.
Oh, okay.
Woo! Nice one.
I got an H.
- Right here.
- Okay.
Pretty good. Good. Guess I'm up.
Where you from?
- Riverside. How 'bout you?
- I'm from a lot of places.
But I... I live here now.