Bridges of Madison County, The (1995) Movie Script

- MICHAEL: Hi, sis.
- BETTY: Hey, Carolyn.
Michael, if I could just get
you to sign this right...
Here, which gives you the
contents of the safe deposit box.
Fine. Thank you. And this
one, which clears the bank...
of all responsibility
for the contents.
BETTY: It's kind of exciting, huh?
Maybe we'll find out that your
mother had secret millions.
Why don't we get started?
Your mother is interred...
at the Cedar Heights Funeral Home
until arrangements can be made.
I thought it was arranged.
- Well, there's a problem.
- What problem?
Well, your mother left explicit
instructions to be cremated.
- Cremated?
- Ew.
- I don't understand it either.
- When did she decide this?
Oh, apparently just
before her death.
- I don't know anybody who gets cremated.
- Lots of people do.
Nobody in my family did. Dad
bought plots at Prairie Hills...
one for him, one for Mom.
- The will clearly states...
- I don't care what it says.
Maybe Mom was delirious. Maybe she
didn't know what she was saying.
If she wanted to be cremated, why the
hell did she let Dad buy two plots, huh?
She was very specific.
She wanted her ashes to be
thrown off Roseman Bridge.
- What?!
- Bizarre!
Mr. Peterson, are you
sure Mom wrote all this?
It was notarized and witnessed
by Mrs. Lucy Delaney.
- Maybe you could ask her.
- Who the hell is she?
I remember her, I just don't...
I don't care if it's legal. We're
not cremating her and throwing...
her ashes off some bridge
where we can't visit her...
because she'll be blown all over!
- And people driving all over her, dogs...
- We're not doing it.
I'm not even sure it's Christian.
Maybe it's an Italian thing.
She was Italian.
Doesn't matter!
Move on.
We can come back to this.
Why don't we open the box?
Michael, look at these.
Have you ever seen these pictures?
It was in this envelope from 1965.
She's not wearing a bra.
That's the Holliwell Bridge.
- In case anyone's interested.
- MICHAEL: Why are there two deeds here?
Oh, this is for the additional
acres he purchased in '59.
MICHAEL: And this?
LAWYER: Those were bills of sale
from equipment your mother sold.
- This is for the original land parcel.
- Beautiful picture of her.
- CAROLYN: Michael.
- MICHAEL: Yeah?
- CAROLYN: Michael.
- MICHAEL: What?
Could you come here for a minute?
Where are we going?
She say anything in there about me?
About leaving me anything?
What's going on?
We were just wondering
if it might be better...
if Carolyn and I looked
at this stuff ourselves.
We don't want to keep
you waiting around.
I'll, uh...
I'll contact your office
about the legal work.
"I struggle to...
put it together in a way that
allows me to continue...
knowing that we're
on separate roads.
But then, I look through the lens
of my camera and you're there.
I start to write an article and I
find myself writing it to you.
It's clear to me now that we have
been moving towards each other...
towards those four
days, all of our lives."
I don't want to hear anymore.
Burn the damn thing.
I don't want to hear it.
Throw it away.
What's he saying now?
He just goes on about how
if Mom ever needed him...
she could reach him through the
National Geographic magazine in D.C.
He was a photographer.
He promises not to write again.
And then, all it says is:
"I love you. Robert."
I'll kill him.
That would be some trick. He's dead.
That's what this letter is...
from his attorney.
He left most of his things to Mom.
And requested...
That he be cremated and his ashes
thrown off Roseman Bridge.
Damn him. I knew Mom wouldn't
have thought that up herself.
It was some damn perverted...
photographic mind influencing her.
When did the bastard die?
Wait a minute, that was...
three years after Daddy...
Do you think...?
I don't know. I'm
completely in the dark.
That's what I get for moving away.
We were kids when
this happened. I...
I can't believe it.
Do you think that she...
had sex with him?
Must be nice inside your head with
Peter Pan and the Easter Bunny.
Don't talk to me like that.
She was my mother!
Now I find that she was...
She was a...
A what? Don't say that!
What am I supposed to think?
I can't believe she never told me.
We spoke at least once a week.
How could she do that?
When did she meet him?
Did Dad know?
Is there anything else
in that envelope?
No, I don't think so.
You read it.
You read it.
"January, 1987.
Dear Carolyn:
I hope you're reading
this with Michael.
I'm sure he wouldn't be able
to read it by himself...
and he'll need help
understanding all this.
First and most of all...
I love you both very much.
And although I feel fine,
I thought I'd put my affairs...
...excuse that word, in order."
I can't believe she's making jokes.
"After going through the
safety deposit box...
I'm sure you'll find
your way to this letter.
It's hard to write this
to my own children.
I could let this die with
the rest of me, I suppose.
But as one gets older...
one's fears subside.
What becomes more and
more important...
is to be known.
Known for all that you were
during this brief stay.
How sad it seems to
leave this earth...
without those you love the most
ever really knowing who you were.
It's easy for a mother to love
her children, no matter what.
I don't know if it's as
simple for children.
You're all so busy being angry
at us for raising you wrong.
His name was Robert Kincaid.
He was a photographer and
he was here in 1965...
shooting an article for
National Geographic...
on the covered bridges
of Madison County.
Remember when we got that issue,
how we felt like celebrities?
Remember when we started
getting the subscription?"
That's Roseman Bridge.
That must be Robert Kincaid.
And that's Mom's medallion.
"I don't want you to
be angry with him.
I hope after you know the story,
you think well of him, even grateful."
- Grateful?
- "It's all there in the three notebooks."
"it was the week of the
Illinois State Fair.
The two of you were going
with Dad to exhibit...
Carolyn's prize steer.
It was the Sunday night you left.
I know it sounds awful..."
But I couldn't wait for you to leave.
You were going to be
gone until Friday.
Four days.
Just four days.
Michael! Carolyn!
Richard! Dinner!
- What I tell you about the door?
- MICHAEL: Sorry.
Okay, so, would you
like to say grace?
- Oh, more sauces.
MICHAEL: A piece of bread.
MAN [ON RADIO]: That was The
Shangri-Las with the number 10 spot...
and moving up to number nine
on this week's nifty 50...
is "Baby, I'm Yours."
Damn drawer.
You can't get mad at it.
Sorry. Didn't mean to yell.
I want you to stay away
from anything too spicy.
- Mm-hm.
- And you promise me.
I swear. Only filters. No
more than half pack a day.
- I've got my orders.
- Doc Reynolds said so.
- I know, I'm only kidding.
- Yeah.
- Are you sure you don't want to go?
- I'm positive.
What are you going to do
as a woman of leisure?
Same thing I do as a hired
hand, except with less help.
I won't be able to sleep. I can't sleep
without you next to me anymore.
It's only 4 days, hon.
Oh, God, where have you been, huh?
You missed them, you know.
They already left.
Why do you love me so much?
You know I don't like you.
Get down.
You like that song?
It's just you and me, buddy.
Just you and me.
I get the distinct
feeling that I'm lost.
Are you supposed to be in Iowa?
Well, then you're not that lost.
I'm looking for a bridge.
One of those covered bridges
in this neighborhood.
Roseman Bridge?
That's it.
Well, you're pretty close. It's
only about two miles from here.
Which way?
Well, you go that way and come
to Cutter's and turn left.
To Cutters?
Cutter's a farm. Small
house, close to the road.
Big, mean yellow dog.
Mean yellow dog. Okay.
Yeah. Then you go along that
road until you come to a fork.
It's only... Less than half a mile.
And then where, after the fork?
The right.
And then you...
No, no. Not that fork. Excuse me.
You pass Peterson's.
Peterson's is a farm.
Past the old schoolhouse, you turn
left. It'd be easier to tell you...
if the roads were marked.
Yeah, it certainly would.
Well, I can take you if you want.
Or I can tell you.
I can take you or tell you.
Either way, it's up to you.
I don't care.
I wouldn't want to take you
away from what you're doing.
No, I was just going to have
some iced tea, and then...
split the atom, but that can wait.
I'll just get my shoes.
I wasn't exactly expecting company.
Where are we headed?
Out. Then right.
then right.
Wonderful smell to Iowa. Kind of
particular to this part of the country.
You know what I mean?
It's kind of hard to explain.
I guess it's in the loam of the soil.
That kind of rich, earthy...
alive... Well, maybe not alive.
Anyway, you don't smell it?
Maybe it's because I live here.
Yeah, I guess so.
Smells great, though.
Are you from Washington originally?
Yeah, I lived there till
I was in my mid-20s.
I moved to Chicago
when I got married.
When did you move back?
After the divorce.
How long have you been married?
Long time.
- Long time, huh?
- Mm.
Where are you from?
Do you mind me asking?
No, I don't mind
your asking. I'm from...
- I'm born in Italy.
- Italy, huh?
From Italy to Iowa.
Whereabouts in Italy?
We lived in a small town
on the eastern side.
No one's ever heard
of it. Called Bari.
- Bari?
- Mm-hm.
Yeah, I know Bari.
- No.
- Yeah.
- Really?
- Yeah.
I was on assignment to Greece...
and I had to go through Bari
to get the boat in Brindisi.
I was looking out, it
looked like pretty country.
So I got off the train
and stayed a few days.
You just got off the train
because it looked pretty?
Yeah. Yeah, I did.
Excuse me.
Care for a cigarette?
Uh, sure. Sure, I'll have one.
So tell me, how long
have you lived in Iowa?
Long. You just got off the train...
and stayed without
knowing anyone there?
FRANCESCA: That's it.
- It's beautiful.
- Mm.
Yeah, this is great.
ROBERT: I won't shoot this today.
I'll just do a little prep work.
Shoot it tomorrow. The
light's no good right now.
So I'll just wait.
I don't mind.
ROBERT: Go on down here.
This is about as good a
place to start as any.
- Beautiful bridge.
- Mm.
Beautiful. You out here much?
Always this hot around here?
Oh, yes. This time of year. Yeah.
There's some sodas in back of
the truck if you'd like one.
- FRANCESCA: Oh, would you like one?
- ROBERT: Not right now.
FRANCESCA: I'll go get one.
FRANCESCA: Oh, there you are.
You caught me.
I was just picking
you some flowers.
Men still do that, don't they?
I'm not out of date, am I?
Picking flowers for a woman
as a sign of appreciation?
No, except those are poisonous.
I'm kidding! I'm sorry.
I'm just kidding.
I never... I'm so sorry.
Are you sadistic by nature or what?
I don't know why I did that.
- ROBERT: Here.
- They're beautiful.
I'm sorry.
FRANCESCA: You looking for something
in particular? There's not much selection.
I had a station out of Chicago
earlier. Played good blues.
It's 1410.
That's nice.
Care for another cigarette?
Is that the mean yellow dog?
- Is it white?
- No, it's yellow.
Well, I want to thank you for all
your kindnesses, Mrs. Johnson.
Would you like some iced tea?
FRANCESCA: Yes, sit down.
- You like lemon?
- Sure.
a little bit of sugar?
You bet.
If you want more...
Aren't you afraid to
have those in here?
I'm so sorry I did that.
I don't know why...
Why I said that.
Where are you staying
while you're here?
Uh, some place with small cabins.
Something-or-other motor inn.
I've got it written down,
but I haven't checked in yet.
And how long are you here for?
Well, I don't know, maybe four or
five days, a week at the outside.
As long as it takes to do the work.
Where's your family?
My husband took the kids
to the Illinois state fair.
My daughter is entering
a prize steer.
- How old?
- Oh, uh, a year and a half.
No, I meant the kids.
Michael is 17 and Carolyn is 16.
- That's nice, having kids.
- Yeah.
Yeah. They're not kids anymore.
Things change.
They always do.
One of the laws of nature.
Most people are afraid of change,
but if you look at it like...
it's something you always can count
on, then it can be a comfort.
There's not many things
you can really count on.
Yeah, I guess.
I'm one of those people
that it frightens, I think.
No, I doubt that.
Why do you say that?
Well, from Italy to Iowa,
that's a big change.
Oh, yeah.
But Richard was in the Army there.
I met him when I was
living in Naples.
I didn't know anything about Iowa.
I just cared that it was America...
and, of course,
being with Richard. So...
What's he like?
He's very clean.
Yeah. No. I mean...
He's other things too.
He's a very hard worker...
very caring...
He's gentle.
He's a good father.
And clean.
Yeah. Clean.
And you like living
here in Iowa, I guess?
Mmm. Yeah...
Go ahead. I'm not
going to tell anyone.
I'm supposed to say:
"Oh, it's just fine. It's quiet
and the people are real nice."
And all that's true. Mostly.
It is quiet.
And the people are nice.
In certain ways.
You know, we all
help each other out.
If someone gets sick or hurt,
all the neighbors come in.
They pick the corn, harvest the
oats or whatever needs to be done.
If you go into town, you can leave your car
unlocked, and let the kids run around.
Don't worry about them.
There are a lot of nice...
things about the people here.
And I respect them
for those qualities.
Well, it's not...
what I dreamed of...
as a girl.
You know, I scribbled
something down the other day.
I often do that when
I'm out on the road.
Kind of goes like this:
"The old dreams...
were good dreams.
They didn't work out,
but I'm glad I had them."
I don't know what it means.
I thought I might use it someday.
Anyway, I think I
know how you feel.
Would you like to stay for dinner?
There's not much of
a choice in town.
And you'd have to eat alone.
So would I.
Yeah, I'd like that.
I'd like that, yeah.
I don't get a home-cooked meal too often
out on the road. I'd like that a lot.
FRANCESCA: This is ridiculous.
Do you mind if I put
some film in the fridge?
- No, go ahead.
- This heat out here isn't too forgiving.
Anything I can do to help?
- FRANCESCA: To help? What, cook?
- Yeah, men cook.
Okay, sure.
ROBERT: Well, what can I do?
You can scrape the carrot.
ROBERT: Scrape the carrots?
And grate them. Make a nice salad.
ROBERT: All right.
Scrape the carrots.
Like that. How's that?
Very good. Very nice.
Not bad, huh?
Don't forget to pick off the end.
Pick off end.
Let me get these...
Excuse me. I can take the
ends off of these too.
Hmm? Yes. That's a good idea.
This the way you do it?
That's good. But don't use
your fingers because...
you know, then they smell like...
I'll get you some lemon.
ROBERT: Right.
- Say, would you like a beer?
- Yeah.
- I've got some in the car.
- I would love a beer.
Anything to get out
of a little work.
Very nice.
- FRANCESCA: Ha-ha-ha.
- ROBERT: No, wait a second. It gets better.
You've gotta picture this: There I am
with three cameras around my neck...
and I've got a tripod, and my
pants are around my ankles.
I'm behind a bush, and then all
of a sudden I see this gorilla.
The hugest gorilla you've ever
seen, staring right at me...
with the most lascivious look
you've ever seen in your life.
I mean, more than you've ever seen
on any creature with that much hair.
Well, I freeze, of course, because
that's what you're supposed to do.
And then it started
coming towards me.
FRANCESCA: And what?
What? Oh, my God!
I can't...
You're blushing.
It's a very painful subject.
A very sore...
sore subject matter, really.
- What happened?
- We became engaged.
FRANCESCA: You should really...
write these stories down.
- I would, except this is a female gorilla.
- Uh-oh!
It had on eye shadow...
and a little lip gloss on her
little lips and it was so nice...
We still write.
I don't want to put
this stuff down.
I'm afraid...
I'm afraid my writing's
a little too technical.
The trouble with being a
journalist too long is...
you stop giving yourself
permission to invent.
I think I'll just stick
to making pictures.
Making pictures.
I like that.
You really love what you do.
Yeah. I'm obsessed by it, really.
Why is that, do you think?
I don't know.
I don't think obsessions have reasons.
That's why they're obsessions.
You sound like an artist.
I wouldn't say that.
National Geographic
likes their photos in focus...
and not too much personal
comment. I don't mind really.
I'm no artist.
That's one of the curses of being
too well-adjusted, too normal.
I don't think you're so normal.
I didn't mean it in the way...
In the way that it sounded.
I mean, you know...
That's, uh...
That's all right. We'll just
chalk it up to a compliment...
and move on.
Did you just love teaching?
Yes, when there was a particular
student who can make a difference...
They're all supposed to,
but they don't. You tend...
to single out 1 or 2 who you think
you can contribute something to.
- And did you?
- I hope so. One went to medical school.
Why'd you quit?
My children, my kids.
Richard didn't like my working.
But you miss it, obviously.
I never think about it.
What's the most exciting
place that you've ever been?
- Hm?
- Hm.
- Unless you're too tired to talk.
- Most exciting...
If you're asking if a man's tired of talking
about himself, you haven't been out much.
I'm sorry. I didn't mean to
make it sound like a dumb...
No, just maybe it's a
little dull for you...
sitting here telling this to some
housewife in the middle of nowhere.
This is your home.
This isn't nowhere.
And it's not dull.
Let's see.
I guess I'd say that the most exciting
place I've been to was Africa.
Because it's another world.
It's not just the
cultures and the people.
That's great, but it's the air.
The colors from dawn to dusk.
There's something tangible
about the whole thing.
The cohabitation of man and
beast, and beast and beast.
Who'll survive and who won't.
There's no judgment
about it either.
There's no imposed morality.
It's just the way it is.
It's beautiful, really.
Just nothing like it. It's...
a voyeur's paradise.
I'd love to see that.
They have safaris. You
could ask your husband.
Looks like it's a beautiful evening out.
Would you like to take a walk?
You've got it all right here.
I'm serious. This is as nice
a place as I've ever been.
The silver apples of the moon
And golden apples of the sun
Yeats. "The Song of
Wandering Aengus."
- Good stuff, Yeats, huh?
- Yes.
Realism, economy, sensuousness...
beauty and magic. All that
appeals to my Irish ancestry.
- Something wrong?
- No. Would you like something to drink?
Maybe some coffee?
Maybe some brandy?
Maybe some both.
- Yes?
- Yeah.
Sure you don't want me
to help you clean up?
No. I'm not going to wash them now.
I'll rinse them now. I'll do it later.
You all right?
We're not doing anything
wrong, you know.
Nothing you couldn't tell
your children about.
To ancient evenings
and distant music?
He's getting her drunk.
That's what happened.
Jesus, maybe he forced himself.
That's why she couldn't tell us.
CAROLYN: Oh, he did not.
- He's such a nice guy.
- Trying to sleep with somebody's wife?
I don't think so. And that
doesn't make you a bad person.
He reminds me of
Steve in a way. Steve's...
weak, immoral and a liar,
but he's still a real nice guy.
He just shouldn't be married.
At least not to me.
I'm hungry. Are you getting hungry?
I had no idea it's
gotten that bad, sis.
Oh, please don't feel sorry for me.
Nobody's forcing me to stay.
Why do you?
- Do you mind if I ask you a question?
Why did you get divorced?
I was never around.
So Why'd I get married?
That's a good question.
I guess I needed a
home base. Roots.
You can kind of get
lost on the road.
Mm. So, what happened?
I never got lost.
I was more at home everywhere
than just in one place.
Kind of like a citizen
of the world.
- Must get lonely sometimes.
- No. I never indulge in that.
I've got friends all over the world I can
visit from time to time if I feel like it.
Women friends too?
Well, I'm a loner, but not a monk.
You really don't need anyone?
No, I think I...
I think I need everyone.
I love people. I'd
love to meet them all.
Yeah, that's the thing about Iowa.
You tend to meet the same kind
of person over and over again.
So when Mrs. Delaney's husband has
an affair with the Redfield woman...
- ...the whole town wakes up.
- Yeah.
Yeah, well, there's a lot
of that going around.
It seems to me there's too much of:
"This is mine"
and "He or she is mine."
There's just too many
lines being drawn.
You know?
Doesn't it scare you though?
Being alone?
I don't think so.
I think I embrace the mystery.
Do you ever regret it?
- What?
- The divorce, I mean.
Do you ever regret
not having a family?
Not everyone's supposed
to have a family.
How can you live for just what
you want? What about other people?
- I told you, I love other people.
- But no one in particular.
- But I love them just the same.
- It's not the same.
I know it's not the same...
but what you're saying is it's not as
good, it's not normal, it's not proper.
No, that's not what I said.
I have a little bit of a problem
with this American family ethic...
that seems to have hypnotized
the whole country.
You probably think of somebody like
me as a poor, displaced soul...
who's destined to wander the planet with
not having a TV or self-cleaning oven.
Just because someone
decides to settle down...
and have a family doesn't
mean they're hypnotized.
Just because I've never
seen a gazelle stampede...
doesn't mean I'm asleep in my life.
You wanna leave your husband?
No. Of course not.
I'm sorry about that.
I apologize for that.
What made you ask such a question?
I thought that's what we're doing.
Asking questions. It was stupid. I'm sorry.
No, I thought we were
having a conversation.
But you're asking me these questions,
you're reading these meanings into it.
It's meanings I must be too simple
to understand or interpret.
I'm sorry.
I apologize.
Well, Roseman Bridge at dawn.
I guess I better be going.
- Look, I'm sorry.
- No.
I apologize. You must forgive me.
That was a very indiscreet
question. It was just...
I feel like something's
been spoiled now.
It was a perfect evening,
just the way it was.
Perfect evening...
a nice walk.
Thank you for the...
company and the brandy.
You're a good woman, Francesca.
Keep that brandy forward in the cupboard.
It might work out after a while.
And don't kid yourself, Francesca.
You're anything but a simple woman.
Richard, hi.
Everyone settled in okay?
I said, "good."
Hi, it's Robert Kincaid.
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: I got your note.
W.B. Yeats and all.
I put it in my pocket and didn't read it
right away because the light was changing.
I had to get my shots.
The light was changing.
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: Yeah. But I do accept
your invitation. It'll have to be later though.
I'm going to the Holliwell Bridge
and do some shooting over there.
- After 9:00, how about that?
- Yes.
Yes, get your work done.
That's what's important.
I'll make something nice we can
warm up when you get here.
You know, it's just a thought. Maybe
you'd like to come along with me.
Yes, I would like that, but I...
I'll drive my pickup and meet
you there. All right?
- ROBERT [ON PHONE]: All right.
- What time?
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: How about 6:00?
Great. Okay. Bye.
Bye. Hmm.
- God, it's Lucy Redfield.
- Apparently Mrs. Delaney caught them.
There's a seat down
here, if you'd like.
LUCY: Thank you.
Kind of hot out, isn't it?
Well? Are you ordering anything?
Thanks. I've changed my mind.
How about this one?
Oh, it's...
Oh, I don't know, I don't
know, I don't know.
I haven't bought a dress
for myself in so long.
I'm just buying a dress. It's
not for a special occasion.
I'm just shopping for
a new dress is all.
That might work.
And if he's still mad, tell him
you married him out of pity.
That always works for me.
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: Hi, it's Robert.
Oh, hi.
Listen, I'm running a
little late. But I'll still...
be there.
I don't want this to
sound the wrong way...
but I'm wondering if this
is such a good idea.
I had lunch in town.
And I crossed paths with
that Redfield woman.
I guess you got the whole story.
The cashier at the grocery
store was most generous.
He's running for town
crier next year.
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: I know more
about the Delaney affair...
than I knew about my marriage.
If it's gonna be a problem
for you to see me tonight...
don't feel pressured to do so.
I'm sometimes not too bright
about people's reactions.
ROBERT [ON PHONE]: I wouldn't want you
to be put in a compromising situation.
Yeah, I understand.
That's very kind of
you to think of that.
I want to come.
Okay? So I'll meet you at the
bridge like we planned...
and don't worry about
the rest of it.
I'm not.
All right. I'll see you then.
- Bye.
- Bye.
FRANCESCA: Beautiful here.
Make yourself at home. I just
gotta knock off a few shots here.
Oh, look at the butterfly.
- ROBERT: Got you!
- Oh!
ROBERT: Come on.
- No, don't take my picture.
- ROBERT: Yeah, come on.
Go ahead, give me a pose. Come on.
One of those French model looks.
- I can't.
- ROBERT: Like Gina Lollobrigida.
Oh, can I help?
No. No, I've got
everything under control.
I'm just going to go...
clean myself up a bit.
I'm going to take a bath.
What happens if I set the table?
Oh. That's fine. Sure. Good.
Would you like a beer...
for your bath?
That's nice.
Dinner will be ready...
in half an hour.
I realized that he had been here...
just a few minutes before.
I was lying where the water
had run down his body...
and I found that intensely erotic.
Almost everything about
Robert Kincaid...
had begun to seem erotic to me.
What's wrong?
You look stunning. If you
don't mind me saying so.
howling-in-agony stunning.
Johnson's. Hi.
Hi, Madge. Yeah.
No, I was just...
fixing myself something to eat.
No, what?
Oh, yeah, I heard about him.
I hear he's some kind of
photographer or something.
Hippie? No. Uh...
I don't know, is that
what a hippie looks like?
Um, no, I was just going to step into
a bath when you called, so maybe...
Yeah, they don't get
back till Friday.
Yeah. Maybe I'll
call you then, okay?
If you want me to
stop, tell me now.
No one's asking you to.
"He told me he wouldn't apologize
for what was going to happen."
What's the matter?
I'm going to go get some air.
- Take me someplace.
- What?
Right now. Take me someplace...
that you've been.
Someplace on the other
side of the world.
How about Italy?
How about Bari?
Tell me about that time...
that you got off the train.
- Well, you know the station.
- Yeah.
You know the little restaurant
with the striped awning...
serves arancinos.
Arancinos, yeah.
And zeppoli. I know that place.
I had coffee there.
Did you sit...
by the doorway or near
the front of the church?
I was near the church.
I know, I sat there once.
I sat there once...
on a day like this.
It was very hot and...
I'd been shopping and I had all
these packages around my feet.
I had to keep moving them.
Then what?
You make me forget my story.
Lucky me.
I had thoughts about him...
I hardly knew what to do with.
And he read every one.
Whatever I felt.
Whatever I wanted,
he gave himself up to.
And in that moment...
everything I knew to be true
about myself, was gone.
I was acting like another woman...
yet I was more myself
than ever before.
We decided to spend Wednesday
away from Winterset...
away from Madison County.
Away from pastures and bridges
and people too familiar...
and reminders too painful.
We let the day take
us where it wanted.
Oh, is that India? It's beautiful.
Oh, look at this one.
Look at their expressions.
So beautiful.
As if the camera isn't on them.
They're not photographs,
they're stories.
You should have these published.
You should have your own collection.
Nobody'd buy it.
Why do you say that?
Six publishers have told me so.
No big deal.
Whatever it is...
that makes an artist look like
an artist to the world...
is just a feature I
don't have, that's all.
Maybe you have to
convince yourself first.
Maybe you have to ask yourself
why it's an obsession.
What's that?
I remembered I had this the
other night, after you left.
It was made for me in Assisi.
My aunt gave it to me
for my 7th birthday.
Keep it.
A musician friend of Robert's told him...
of a place off the interstate.
A place, Robert assured me,
no one I knew would see us.
Thank you.
WAITRESS: Thank you.
What were you like
when you were younger?
- Why?
- I just wondered.
Why were you trouble?
I had a temper.
What were your parents like,
your mother and father?
I don't know if I can
do this, you know.
Try to cram in a whole lifetime
between now and Friday.
- CAROLYN: Where'd you go?
- Bar in town.
Have you called Betty?
Well, maybe you should.
I found out who Lucy Delaney is.
Remember the Delaneys
from Hillcrest Road?
Yeah, but I thought she died.
He remarried. Lucy Redfield.
Apparently, they were
having an affair for years.
The first Mrs. Delaney
was a bit of a stiff.
You mean...
she didn't like sex?
Mom could have helped.
Oh, boy!
All these years I've resented not living
the wild life in someplace like Paris.
And all the time I could
have moved back to Iowa.
Are you drunk?
Not yet.
You wanna get out of
here for a while?
I think I'd better.
CAROLYN: I'll take the keys.
I'm driving.
MICHAEL: I've never cheated on Betty.
Not once we were married, I mean.
- CAROLYN: Did you want to?
- MICHAEL: Only about a thousand times.
What do I do now?
What's good enough for Mom
is good enough for me?
What gets me...
is I'm in my forties.
I've been in this crummy frigging
marriage for over 20 years...
because that's what I was
taught. You stick things out.
Normal people don't get divorced.
I can't remember the last time my
husband made love to me so intensely...
that he transported me to
Africa, for Christ sake.
Quite frankly, I don't
think he ever did.
Now I find out that in between bake
sales, my mother was Anais Nin.
What about me?
I feel really weird.
Like she cheated on me,
not Dad. Isn't that sick?
When you're the only son
you sort of feel...
like the prince of the kingdom. In
the back of your mind, you think...
your mother shouldn't want sex
anymore because she has you.
You're right, that is sick.
If she was so unhappy,
why didn't she leave?
Can I...
read it now?
Did I miss anything important?
She just took him up to her room.
Dad's room?
All right, you can skip
that part. Let's just start...
"Robert lay asleep in the bed.
I was up all night that night.
What happens tomorrow?
By the end of that day he will leave
and everything new and unknown...
that had become so familiar...
...would be gone."
Did you sleep well?
- More coffee?
- Sure.
I hope you don't mind my asking,
but I feel like I should.
These women friends of yours all
over the world, how does it work?
Do you see some of them again,
or do you forget others?
Or do you write to some
of them now and then?
- How do you manage it?
- What do you mean?
I just need to know the procedure,
so I don't upset your routine.
Want some jam?
What are you talking about?
Routine? There's no routine.
Is that what you think this is?
Well, what is this?
Well, is it up to me?
You're the one who's married and you have
no intention of leaving your husband.
To do what?
Go off with someone who needs
everyone, but no one in particular?
What would be the point? Will
you pass me the butter, please?
I was honest with you.
Yes. Absolutely.
You have this habit of not needing,
and that's very hard to break.
In that case, why sleep?
You don't need rest.
Why eat? You don't need food.
ROBERT: What are you doing?
Gee, I don't know. Maybe I'm not
cut out to be a world citizen...
who experiences everything and
nothing at the same time.
How do you know what I experience?
- I know you.
- Oh?
What can this possibly mean to
someone who doesn't need meaning...
who just goes with the mystery,
pretends he's not scared to death?
Let's stop this right now.
After you leave, I'll have to sit
here for the rest of my life...
and wonder what happened to me,
if anything happened at all.
I'm gonna have to wonder if
you're gonna be sitting...
in some housewife's
kitchen in Romania...
telling her of your world of good friends,
and you secretly include me in that group.
What do you want me to say?
I don't want you to say anything.
I don't need you to say anything.
I want you to stop this now.
More eggs? Or shall we fuck on
the linoleum one last time?
- I'm not gonna apologize for who I am.
- No one asked you to.
- I won't feel like I did anything wrong.
- You won't me made to feel, period!
You've carved yourself a part
in the world as a voyeur...
a hermit, a lover when
you feel like it.
The rest of us are supposed to feel
grateful for this... Go to hell!
It isn't human not to
be lonely and afraid!
You're a hypocrite and a phony!
I don't want to need you.
Because I can't have you.
What difference does that make?
Don't you see?
Robert, don't you see?
I just have to know the truth.
I have to know the truth,
because if I don't, I'll go crazy.
So just tell me, either way.
I can't act like this is
enough because it has to be.
And I can't pretend not
to feel what I feel...
because it's over tomorrow.
If I've done anything...
to make you think that...
what we have between us
is nothing new for me...
is just some routine...
then I do apologize.
What makes it different?
It's just when I...
When I think...
of why I make pictures...
the only reason I
can come up with...
It just seems that I've
been making my way here.
Seems right now, that all
I've ever done in my life...
was making my way here to you.
And if I have to think about
leaving here tomorrow...
without you...
FRANCESCA: Don't let go.
Oh, my God, what are
we going to do?
No. Where's your truck?
It's out behind the barn.
I'll go...
- Hi, Madge.
- I made some brown betty.
Sent Floyd off to town
with the boy. I said:
"I'm gonna visit my girlfriends, spend
the afternoon, that's all there is to it."
He said, "Who's gonna
make lunch?" I said:
"I'm taking a sick day.
Eat at the diner."
Isn't that hilarious? He
didn't dare raise an eyebrow.
I don't even want to tell
you how late he was out.
Sorry two days passed before I came by.
With the boy home, time escapes me.
Have you heard from Richard?
How's the fair? God, it's hot.
Yes. It's hot.
Come with me.
Come away with me.
ROBERT: Care for a beer?
You're not coming with me, are you?
No matter how many times I
turn it over in my mind...
it doesn't seem like
the right thing.
For who?
For anyone.
They'll never be able to
live through the talk.
And Richard...
Richard will never be able
to get his arms around this.
It will break him in half.
He doesn't deserve that.
He's never hurt anyone
in his whole life.
He can move on. People move.
His family has had this farm
for over a hundred years.
Richard doesn't know how
to live anywhere else.
And my kids...
They're practically grown. You said
yourself they hardly talk to you.
Yeah, they don't say much.
But Carolyn is only 16.
She's about to find out about
all of this for herself.
She's going to fall in love...
and she's going to try to
build a life with someone.
If I leave...
what does that say to her?
What about us?
You have to know...
deep down...
the minute we leave here,
everything will change.
Yeah, it could...
It could get better.
No matter how much distance we put
between ourselves and this house...
I carry it with me.
I feel it every minute
we're together.
And I will start to blame loving
you for how much it hurts.
And then, even these...
even these four...
beautiful days will seem just like
something sordid and a mistake.
Do you think that what happened
with us just happens to anyone?
What we feel for each other?
We're hardly...
hardly two separate people now.
Some people search all their
life for this and never find it.
Others don't even think it exists.
You're going to tell me...
You're going to tell me this is the
right thing to do? Giving it up?
We are the choices that
we have made, Robert.
You don't understand.
Don't you see?
Nobody understands when
a woman makes a choice...
to marry and have children...
in one way, her life begins,
but in another way, it stops.
You build a life of details...
and you just stop
and stay steady...
so that your children can move.
And when they leave...
they take your life
of details with them.
You're expected to move on, but you
don't remember what moved you...
because no one's asked you in
so long, not even yourself.
Oh, but you never think...
You never think love like this
is going to happen to you.
But now that you have it...?
Well, now I want to
keep it forever.
I want to love you the way I do
now for the rest of my life...
but if we leave...
we lose it.
And I can't make an
entire life disappear...
to start a new one.
All I can do is try
to hold on to us...
somewhere inside of me.
[CRYING] You have to help me.
Don't lose us.
Don't throw us away.
Maybe you feel this way.
Maybe you don't.
Maybe it's because
you're in this house.
Maybe tomorrow, when they come
back, you'll feel differently.
- Don't you think that's possible?
- I don't know.
Look, I'm going to be
here a few more days.
We can talk later. We
don't have to decide now.
Robert, don't. Don't do this.
ROBERT: I don't want to
say goodbye right now.
We don't have to
make that decision.
Maybe you'll change your mind.
Maybe we'll see each other
and you'll change your mind.
If that happens you
have to decide...
because I can't.
I'll only say this once.
I've never said it before.
But this kind of certainty comes
but just once in a lifetime.
- FRANCESCA: You got it.
- CAROLYN: I couldn't sell him.
I know. I knew you would win.
- Good girl. Proud of you.
- CAROLYN: Thanks.
- Hi, Mom.
- Hi, darling.
- Did you eat?
- Yeah. I ate.
RICHARD: Hey, there. How you doing?
FRANCESCA: It didn't take
you too long to get here.
- FRANCESCA: Three hours, what?
- MICHAEL: We really had fun.
- FRANCESCA: Are you hungry?
I got something for you.
MICHAEL: The fair was great.
You all came home.
And, with you...
my life of details.
A day or two passed, and
with each thought of him...
a task would present
itself like a lifesaver...
pulling me further and further
away from those four days.
I was grateful.
I felt safe.
MAN [ON TV]: Put me out of my misery.
I can't stand the suspense.
I'm not talking about you.
I know I'm a goner. I can't
stand the suspense. Shoot.
I don't even need a blindfold.
Condemned man's dinner.
Chicken, peas, watermelon.
Do you want anything special?
RICHARD: How about that
brown sugar meat loaf?
moment, I didn't know where I was.
And for a split second, I thought
that he didn't really want me.
That it was easy to walk away.
Robert leaned over as if to get
something from the glove box.
Eight days ago, he'd done that...
and his arm had brushed
across my leg.
A week ago I'd been in Des
Moines, buying a new dress.
That truck's a long way from home.
Washington State.
I'll bet it's that photographer
they talked about over at the cafe.
Boy, what's he waiting for?
Come on!
The words were inside of me.
"I was wrong, Robert. I was
wrong to stay, but I can't go.
Let me tell you again
why I can't go.
Tell me again why I should go."
I heard his voice
coming back to me:
"This kind of certainty comes
but once in a lifetime."
What's wrong, Franny?
Will you please tell me
what's wrong with you?
I just need a minute, Richard.
I just need...
And now for the farm report.
Some areas reporting an
increase in wind activity...
- MICHAEL: Dad, you bought the wrong feed!
- RICHARD: What?
grateful for the silence that night.
I realized love won't
obey our expectations.
Its mystery is pure and absolute.
What Robert and I had...
could not continue
if we were together.
And what Richard and I shared
would vanish if we were apart.
But how I wanted to share this!
How would our lives
have changed if I had?
Could anyone else have
seen the beauty of it?
I'm Francesca Johnson.
And I...
I feel awful that I haven't come to
visit you sooner. Is it a bad time?
Am I interrupting anything?
Is it too late?
No, not at all.
"We became inseparable, Lucy and I.
The funny thing is, I didn't tell
her about Robert until years later.
But for some reason,
being with her...
somehow made me feel...
it was safe to think about him...
to continue loving him.
This town loved talking about the
two of us, but we didn't care.
And neither did your father."
It's time, huh?
There. That's it.
Is better?
Is better.
I just want to say...
I know you had your own dreams.
I'm sorry I couldn't
give them to you.
I love you so very much.
After your father died...
I tried to get in touch with Robert,
but he had left the National Geographic.
No one seemed to know where he was.
My only connections to him were the
places that we'd been to on that one day.
And so, each year on my birthday...
I'd revisit them.
Then one day, I received a
letter from his attorney...
with a package.
There has not been a day since
that I have not thought of him.
When he said we were no longer
two people, he was right.
We were bound together as
tightly as two people can be.
If it hadn't been for him...
I don't think I would have lasted
on the farm all those years.
Remember that dress of
mine you wanted, Carolyn?
The one you said I never wore?
I know I was silly...
but to me it was as if you were asking
to wear my wedding dress to the movies.
After reading all this...
I hope you can now understand
my burial request.
It was not the ravings
of some mad old lady.
I gave my life to my family.
I wish to give Robert
what is left of me.
GIRL: Hey, Dad.
Can I talk to you?
You've been gone all night long. Do I even
have the right to ask where you've been?
Do I make you happy, Betty?
Because I want to.
More than anything.
Hi, Steve. It's me.
Good. You?
Listen, we have to talk.
Well, how about now?
Uh, no...
I've decided I'm gonna
stay here for a while.
I don't know how long.
No, I'm not angry, Steve.
I'm not.
I'm not angry at all.
I gave Lucy his photography book.
If you are interested, take a look.
If my words still leave
some things unclear...
perhaps his pictures
can illuminate.
After all, that's what
an artist does best.
I love you both...
with all my heart.
Do what you have to
to be happy in this life.
There is so much beauty.
Go well, my children.
[English - US - SDH]