Judgment (1990) Movie Script

MAN: Now, tell me your sins.
Go ahead, tell me.
I was disobedient to my dad,
and I talked back to my half--
Shh! Slow down.
God can't hear you.
My sister-- I was mean to her
and I teased her.
Is that all?
Yes, father, that's all.
Now let me hear an act of contrition.
Oh, my God, I am heartily sorry
for having offended Thee.
And I detest all my sins
because of thy just punishments,
but most of all
because they offend Thee, my God,
Who art all good and deserving
of all my love.
I firmly resolve,
with the help of Thy grace,
to sin no more and to avoid
the near occasions of sin.
I absolve you in the name of the Father,
and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
[Dog barking]
I got it, Dad!
Hey, come on in!
You're gonna be late for church!
OK, let's go.
Dad! Dad!
Come on. Don't want to be late
for your first communion. Come on.
I'll be at church.
Ha ha!
Dad, give me my bike.
# Amen #
# Amen #
# Amen, Amen, Amen #
Once again now!
# Amen #
Whoo hoo!
# Amen #
# Amen, Amen, Amen #
FATHER: Behold
the Lamb of God.
Behold Him who taketh away
the sins of the world.
Lord, I am not worthy that Thou
shouldst enter under my roof.
Say but the Word,
and my soul shall be healed.
Lord, I am not worthy that Thou
shouldst enter under my roof.
Say but the Word,
and my soul shall be healed.
Lord, I am not worthy that Thou
shouldst enter under my roof.
Say but the Word,
and my soul shall be healed.
The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ
preserve thy soul unto life everlasting.
The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ
preserve thy soul unto life everlasting.
The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ
preserve thy soul unto life everlasting.
-The way I see it, Daniel,
Diocese ain't gonna forget about us,
seeing as how we always done
the right thing by the church.
Know what I'm saying?
I gotta tell you, Old Pete,
your bid's too high,
they don't give a damn
you done the right thing by the church.
[Kids yelling]
Whoo whoo whooo!
Whoo whoo whooo!
Sabby! Robbie!
Come over here.
Oh, you-- you're all dirt.
Spit. More. Ha ha!
Father wants to talk to you.
I killed two alligators.
Stop it now.
Listen to Father.
They looked like alligators.
I'm sure they did.
Robbie, I would like to train you
to be an altar boy.
Would you like that?
It's not fair.
Is it hard, Father?
Hard like math?
-It's harder.
-Oh, Justine, shh.
No, Robbie,
it's not hard like math.
but you do have to learn
how to walk and bow and genuflect and...
there are lots of perks.
Will God love me more?
Well, strictly speaking, he can't,
but between us, he will love you more.
The way I figure,
that puts me in line
for the renovation at the diocese.
Then I can do a proper bid.
Now, the way I figure it--
Honey, the way I figure-- look,
if you bid this the way you want...
we're gonna lose $600,
maybe $700.
Where you get that? Look.
Where do I get it? Well, look.
See, you forgot to
add in the excavating.
[Adding machine clicking]
With the cartin'... you have that...
You see? Look.
[Adding machine totals]
Well, I'll make it up
on the diocese job.
You don't have the diocese job.
We don't have this job.
Honey, I'll get this job.
-By taking a $600 loss?
-And I'll get the diocese job.
We have a payment due on all that.
We've got a payment due
on the house.
I want to do this over.
Come on. I want to go with you
when you talk to 'em about the bid.
[Door bangs]
Hi, Mom. Hi, Dad.
Sorry I'm late.
Hi, honey. Hi.
[Horn honks]
Gotta help Daniel fix his generator.
Oh, hold off on those numbers, Sabine.
They're not quite right yet.
FATHER: Don't spill it now, Joseph.
Prayers on the left.
Robbie, hold up your left hand.
Now, what do we do next?
Take the veil off the chalice,
and then I do the little pitchers.
Which are called?
-Cruets. Cruets.
Joseph, let him learn
at his own speed.
He's so slow, Father.
I expect to hear about that nasty crack
at your next confession.
Glory be to the Father
and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning
is now and always will be,
world without end. Amen.
Now put your hands
over the page,
and this time
do it from memory.
Glory be to the Father
and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning
will always be till the end.
Are you gonna tell Mom and Dad
that I can't do it?
Is that what you think
I should tell them?
I'll make you a promise, Robbie.
Father will tell them
only what they need to know.
MAN: The problem isn't you.
The Guitry bid is a fair bid.
The problem is overruns elsewhere.
I'm sure I don't have to tell you that
the church is a nonprofit organization.
-Yes, well, but we're not.
The pity is, this isn't a very big job.
so there's not much
room for...whatever.
There is a much
bigger job coming up.
You hear that, hon?
Yes, but Father, you said
that our bid was fair.
And I meant that.
So, why don't you be fair to us?
Honey, they got these overruns.
Well, I know that,
but they're not our overruns.
Geez, Emm! What?
Sorry, Father.
Let's have some more tea.
[Horn honks]
Don't worry.
It'll be just fine.
I did it! Your daddy did it.
Give me a hug.
Give me a kiss.
Give me a great big kiss.
Give your mom a kiss, too.
Your Daddy did it, buddy.
Your Daddy did it.
Give me a hug. Give me a kiss.
Well, I'll tell you, that Monsignor
of yours is one tough trader,
but I didn't back down a nickel.
Sabine, Justine,
why don't you go in
and get us some beers and sodas?
Daddy's gonna make a toast.
What's the matter with you?
I don't see a smile.
You been giving the Father a hard time?
No, no, not at all, Pete.
He's just scared because--
Because what?
Because I want to take him
on one of our little camping trips.
That's when we really study.
And I want him to stay overnight
at the rectory on Saturdays,
and he's afraid you won't let him.
Well, Father,
I got one question.
Will it help him to be
an altar boy quicker?
For sure.
Well, then, that's that.
-Can I take my toy in, too?
-That's up to the Father.
Here we go. Have a cold one.
Now, hold on, hold on.
This here's to me and your mom.
She was with me every minute.
And your sister
for all that nice typing she did.
But most of all to our church
for being so good to me and mine.
I'd like to get a picture.
To the church.
OK, smile, everybody.
[Shutter clicks]
[Birds chirping]
[Kids talking indistinctly]
Robbie, reach for my chin.
Hold it up.
Now pull me to safety.
That's it.
Very good, Robbie.
[Boys all shouting]
Ha ha ha!
OK, boys.
Let's settle down.
Now let us pray.
ALL: Our Father, who art in Heaven,
hallowed be Thy name.
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on Earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day
our daily bread
and forgive us
our trespasses...
Now...I want you
to write down the name
of anybody you've been bad to
and what you've done to them.
Only you and God
will know what you've written.
Never tell anyone your sins,
except for God and Father
because Father is here
in God's place,
but never tell anyone else.
These are your sins...
and they are burning away.
[Fire crackling]
[Crickets chirping]
Robbie, where's Alex?
He went in with Joseph.
Oh. Are you OK?
I never went to bed
in a tent before.
Do you think you can
go to sleep?
I'll--I'll try.
You want some help?
I think so.
Is there room for two in there?
Here. Hold the light.
JUSTINE: I bet you're setting up
that altar all wrong.
-I bet I'd learn it faster than you.
-You would not!
I learn faster than you in school.
That's school. You're a girl.
They don't take girls.
That's not fair! Why not?
Girls are just as good.
-'Cause you don't have a pee-pee.
-I do, too!
You don't have
a pee-pee on the outside.
Mine's just as good.
-No, it's not!
-Yes, it is!
-No, it's not!
-Why not?
'Cause Father can't play with yours.
That's not fair!
I'm not gonna help you anymore,
and I'm not gonna help you
in school either, so there!
Help! Mommy! Daddy!
ROBBIE: And Justine
made me so mad
when she pulled
my altar apart,
and I pushed her down in the stream.
Then what happened, Robbie?
She ran and told Dad,
and he took the strap to me,
but it wasn't my fault.
Oh, I understand.
It was wrong for your father to do that.
-Yes, Father?
Come on over to my side.
We'll talk.
ROBBIE: Mommy!
There's blood!
I'm bleeding!
Mommy! Mommy, where are you?
Robbie, what is it?
Oh, honey, it's OK.
It is. It's OK.
It's something that you ate.
-Does it hurt you?
-I don't know.
Oh. We'll go to St. Paul's tomorrow.
It's OK, I swear.
Come on.
Well, we didn't find
anything internal.
So, my guess is because
of the rectal bruising,
he ate something
that he couldn't digest.
Does he ever swallow things
like plum pits or peach pits or--
Oh, yes, sometimes.
We've been through all that.
Why don't you check on him tomorrow
and give me a call, OK?
-Hello, Father.
-Is Robbie home?
Go right on in.
He'll be so pleased to see you.
Thank you.
Thanks for coming, Dr. Morgan.
How nice of you
to come out on a Sunday.
[Car engine starts]
I've got something for you.
Are you OK?
Here. This is for you.
For Sunday.
You're gonna be serving Mass with me.
[Door opens]
Well, how nice.
Aw, Father, thank you.
Can you stay for some tea?
Uh, no, I've got to go.
God bless you, Robbie.
Bye, Father.
[Door closes]
Hey! Aren't you going to open it?
It's nothing but an itty-bitty cut.
Now, just relax, son.
You're gonna do just great.
No, I won't!
It's getting late, son.
You gotta get ready.
Listen, son,
I know you're a bit fearful,
but we're all waiting
to be proud of you.
so you start moving now, you hear?
[People speaking indistinctly]
Come on.
Please--oh, please.
Pete, please don't.
Robbie, honey, listen.
We all know people get a little scared
when they do something like this
for the first time.
But don't forget,
Father says you're his best boy.
Come on.
You got nothing to be worried about.
I know why he's scared.
It's his pee-pee.
-I bet his pee-pee went inside.
He has to have his pee-pee
on the outside
so Father can play with it.
I bet it went inside
and that's why he's scared.
What? What are you talking about?
Did you tell her that?
Did you make that up about Father?
-I don't want to be an altar boy!
-You shut up!
I don't want to be an altar boy!
I hate it!
PETE: I said stop!
Robbie, come back!
PETE: Hey!
[Breathing hard]
Did you make it up, son?
Did you?
MOTHER: Did Robbie say
how Father touched him?
PETE: He didn't actually
tell me anything.
I want him arrested.
-I mean it.
-Have him arrested?
-Are you crazy? He's a priest.
-Oh, yeah. He's a priest.
He's a priest who hurt my son.
Wait a minute.
Wait just a minute.
All we know is that maybe--
All we know is that maybe
he played with his pee-pee.
That's right.
And what was
all the bleeding about?
Emm, the doctor told you,
that could have been from anything.
-What is wrong with you?
-Nothing is wrong with me!
I just don't--
[Pounding on door]
Hey, Daniel.
Man, come on in.
Emm, honey, why don't you
make a fresh pot of coffee?
-That would go down real well.
Sit down.
Oh, thanks, Pete.
Bit of a mess in here.
Emm only cleans
up at the house.
Switch your shift, Maddie?
I thought you worked mornings.
Oh, I took the day off.
Wish to hell I could do that.
Hey, um--
We were just--
-Go ahead, honey.
-No, no, you go. It's...
Uh...Pete, listen.
Did Robbie tell you
about the other altar boys,
whether Father did anything to them?
What? Joseph?
What did he do to him?
Oh, he wouldn't say.
What did Robbie tell you?
-Well, we know that he--
-No, we don't.
She wants to have him arrested.
Oh, Emm, we don't know for sure
that he did anything yet.
Why don't we talk to him?
You and me, Pete.
Talk to him till he talks to us.
Now, you just stop that.
He's our priest.
-Let's go to the Bishop.
-The Bishop?
Yes, the Bishop.
He's in charge of him,
isn't he, the Bishop?
Emm, we're gonna go to the Bishop,
we gotta have a whole lot more
to tell him than we got
to tell him right now.
I think we got to take this
one step at a time.
Now, what's the rush?
The boys aren't going back there.
They're safe.
We know where to get him.
First off, I think we got to get
more information out of the boys,
and then we go to the Monsignor,
not the Bishop.
I know the Monsignor.
We go to the Monsignor
and we ask him.
I don't believe this!
We are talking about Robbie.
And we're talking about Joseph.
Emm, I think that Pete's got a point.
What will we say to them?
-Will you go to the police with me?
-Will you go to the Bishop with me?
-Not without more to tell him.
I can't stop you going by yourself.
"Are you a widow, Miss Guitry?"
"Are you separated, Miss Guitry?"
"Is your husband traveling?"
"Is your husband the boy's real father,
Miss Guitry? Yes."
"Well, where is he?"
He wants more information,
Your Excellency!
You don't need
the diocese job that bad!
Just listen to me.
I think we ought to
talk about this later.
Pete's gotta go to work.
I gotta go to work.
We all got stuff to do.
Come on, honey,
let's go home. Pete.
EMM: Hey, what about others?
[Advancing paper in roller]
Monsignor Beauvais,
I must inform you that a terrible act
has been committed against my son
by our parish priest Father Aubert.
I believe that he has molested my son
and possibly other altar boys
from our church.
It is only right that you remove him
from St. Simons immediately.
[Door closes]
Aubert, Frank.
Anything wrong, Father?
No, no. The Bishop's considering
Father Aubert for a Diocesan award.
Apparently, he's worked miracles in,
what is it, St. Simon?
I'm trying to recall his face.
My mind's useless this morning.
-Do you know him, Paul?
-Oh, not really, Monsignor.
Been years since
we've seen each other.
Seminary. So-so.
St. Ann's, 1974, transferred.
Hmm. Transferred 1976, 1978.
House of Affirmation.
Is he a drinker?
Not that I'm aware of, Monsignor.
"Why are you taking Father away?"
That'll be all, Father.
Yes, Monsignor.
Hello, Father.
Oh, good morning, Monsignor.
Good morning, Frank.
Mmm. That's better.
Frank, I'm afraid
I have some bad news.
Bad news, Monsignor?
The Bishop has decided
not to consider you for the award.
Let me explain.
The award would be for work you did
while you were at St. Simons.
But the Bishop feels
it's time for you to move on.
Move on?
I don't understand.
Move on. The Bishop feels
you're ripe for a larger parish.
And he feels it would
be awkward to give you an award
for work you did
at the parish you're leaving.
Well, I'm very happy
where I am, Monsignor.
I'm sure you are.
Of course you are, Frank.
And you'll be very happy
where you're going.
When would this be, Monsignor?
Quite soon.
After you spend some time
at the House of Affirmation.
Bishop feels that any priest
who's being promoted
should take his post
renewed, refreshed.
Don't you agree?
You'll enjoy
the House of Affirmation, Frank.
It works miracles on the spirit.
Oh, I'm sorry, Monsignor?
The House of Affirmation.
You want me to go?
The Bishop wants you to go.
But I have confession Saturday.
There's Masses Sunday.
There's a confirmation
and two first communions.
It's in the Bishop's hands, Frank.
God bless you, Monsignor.
Let us hope so.
Are we going to church
tomorrow or not?
The way I'm feeling right now,
I'd just as soon
burn the place down.
Fine. Then that's that.
Now, hold on.
I could change my mind tomorrow.
When? An hour before church?
No, we can't put it off anymore.
How come all of a sudden
I gotta make up both our minds?
How come you got nothing
to say to me?
What do you want me to say?
It's not the same for me.
You know that.
You know that.
It's here and it's here.
It's here.
I have been going there
since I was 4 years old.
Communion, confession, confirmation.
I met you there.
I fell in love with you there.
I married you there.
They were all baptized there.
I hate it. I just hate it.
I hate the idea. I hate it, I hate it.
I know he is right there.
I know he hurt my son.
I know he's bad. I know it, I know it,
I know it, I know it.
Oh, God help me.
I can't desert God...
over a bad priest.
I mean, you do whatever you have to do.
I can't.
Good morning.
I'm Monsignor Beauvais.
The Bishop has asked me to tell you
that Father Aubert has taken ill
and will be on a brief
recuperative leave.
[Congregation murmuring]
The Bishop wants me to remind you
that the spreading of gossip
is a sin.
Father Vinton.
In the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
He's gone for Christ's sake.
What do you want to go pester
the Monsignor for?
I want to know if he's coming back.
Come on.
-Miss Guitry, how are you?
Peter, the Broussards.
What can I do for you, Miss Guitry?
Well, I wanted to ask you, Monsignor.
Is Father Aubert coming back?
Well, we'll have to see
how he mends.
So, you say if he gets better,
he's coming back?
That's up to the Bishop, Miss Guitry.
Forgive me, Miss Guitry. I have
a confirmation 20 miles from here.
[Engine starts]
Let's just go to the Bishop.
Good afternoon, Miss Guitry...
Miss Broussard,
and your friends are...
-Mrs. Basile.
-How do you do?
-Mrs. Arnaud.
I thought the Bishop was seeing us.
The Bishop is extremely busy
this afternoon, Miss Guitry.
I'm here in his place.
Now, as I understand it,
you want the Bishop to assure you
that Father Aubert will not
be returning to St. Simons.
And you advise the Bishop
that it would be dangerous--
I use your word-- to permit
Father Aubert to be around young boys.
Perhaps if you could explain
a bit further.
He did sinful things to our boys.
Sinful things? Like what?
What did your boys tell you?
They are too scared
to tell us anything.
-Then how do you know?
-Because of the way they behave.
Because of the way they behave?
I'm shocked.
Here you all are, sensible,
intelligent women--
Catholic women, who know that gossip
and innuendo are sins.
And yet, you're ready,
without a shred of evidence,
to ruin the career of your own priest?
There is evidence.
Can you just send him someplace else?
That's not up to me, Miss Broussard.
It's up to the Bishop.
When can we see him, then?
Frankly, Miss Guitry,
given what you've told me,
I don't think the Bishop
would agree to talk to you.
Of course, I will ask.
How are you, Frank?
Never better.
Never better.
Oh, it's great to see you.
-Oh, what is it, 5 years.
-Ha ha! Closer to 8.
The diocese sent me
to talk to you.
Oh, my new parish.
The Monsignor thinks...
and the Bishop thinks
that you better forget about that,
for now anyways.
There's been some rumors, Frank,
and there's been a complaint,
like before.
So, is that why they sent you?
would you like me
to hear your confession?
My confession?
Tell them to send a priest.
I am not a misfit or a criminal.
I am a priest
and I want to talk to a priest.
-You tell them that.
You tell them
they sent the wrong man.
The diocese will be in touch.
We're not the same.
Yes, we are, Frank.
What's the matter?
Oh, Robbie.
I'm sorry, honey.
It's all right.
It's all right.
And I'm saying, one thing has nothing
to do with the other.
It's not the first time he got a few Ds.
What? 2 whole Ds, 2 Fs.
What's the Bishop supposed to do,
coach him in math?
The Bishop's got nothing to do with it.
Father has got something to do with it.
Father is gone, for God's sake.
Well, then, why don't
they tell us that?
-You just went over there, Emm.
-I went over there months ago.
Well, that proves it.
He's gone.
I don't want to fight.
Oh, no, you sure don't.
He's looking for me.
[People murmuring]
Oh, Pete, we're gonna miss him.
You go on ahead.
-We have to talk to you, Bishop.
-Mr. Guitry, please.
-Where's he going?
-He's after our son.
-Miss Guitry, the Bishop--
-We need your help!
Miss Guitry, please calm down.
-As I've explained--
-We don't mean him any harm.
He's our Bishop.
We're asking him for help.
Given what he knows, Mr. Guitry,
the Bishop doesn't see any way
he can help you.
Well, then, who the hell can,
God damn it?
Tell me, God damn it!
May God forgive you.
Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.
It has been 5 days
since my last confession.
Please tell me your sins.
At my last confession
and the one before that
and a lot before that,
I didn't confess to all my sins.
I didn't confess to my hate.
Please go on.
I hate a priest.
But even more,
I hate the Monsignor.
I hate the Bishop.
How can God forgive them
for what they've done to us?
They've ruined our lives.
They've betrayed us.
Do you believe the church
betrayed you?
Do you want to leave the church?
But I think it has left me, Father.
I hope we can afford this lawyer.
Pete. Here.
MAN: Friends, I want
to do right by you, but
the trouble is, it's your boy's word
against the church.
A case like this,
it would really tilt things your way.
You weren't alone.
Now, do you happen to know
any of the other parents?
-Of course.
-Good, good. Now.
What were you looking for?
First off, to make sure
he don't come back.
And then maybe even get him
out of the church.
Yes, yes, and some kind
of help for Robbie. Doctor.
Now, after I've done some homework,
we'll talk about damages.
Money. For your suffering.
And more especially
for your boy's suffering.
Is this gonna be real expensive?
I lose...all I charge you
is out-of-pocket money.
I win, I'll take a little, bitty taste
of what I get for you, hmm?
Now, you folks go on home
and take it easy.
Leave everything to me.
Dave Davis is on your side.
And remember...
David did beat Goliath, hmm?
Thank you.
-What is it?
-Your Excellency, they're here.
MAN: Your Excellency,
as you know,
the diocese is only one
of the defendants in this case.
The insurers, whom we represent,
are the others.
And the insurers believe
there is simply no choice.
Settle, and settle now.
In other words, the insurers credit
these fantastic accusations?
With 9 families with 9 sons
bringing this action, yes.
The Bishop is not completely convinced
that these families,
devout Catholic families one and all,
will pursue this to the point
of confronting their own church.
So, you're not willing to settle now?
We feel at this point,
such a step would be...
Monsignor, under the diocese contract
with my company, in the event that
you reject our advice in
an action against you,
we are not responsible
for defending you.
Monsignor, I am more than willing
to accept that responsibility.
Or for any damages.
In addition, should you choose
to defend this case,
my company
and my colleagues' companies
would be forced to cancel
the diocese's insurance
against certain types of liability.
Well, gentlemen,
what do you suggest?
If you could just give
us a moment, please.
Shall we all agree, then,
without acknowledging liability,
that the boys could begin
therapy immediately,
and that we should reimburse
for that therapy.
Up to a negotiated cut-off date.
Up to a negotiated cut-off date.
But these reimbursements
will be made
only in the event
of a settlement.
Now, let's talk about what we want.
First, to hold harmless
all the defendants.
Second, not to mention
any specific acts
by any of the defendants
in the settlement.
Third, complete secrecy
concerning every element
of the settlement.
Fourth, a pledge not to bring
any future action
against any of the defendants.
Fifth, since all the defendants
are held harmless,
the question of removing the priest
from the church
or disciplining him
or reassigning him
cannot be part of any settlement.
It would be proper to assure them
that their children
are out of harm's way.
If you indicate by word or deed
that you have taken any action,
or intend to take any action,
regarding this priest,
you will have acknowledged
your liability.
These people are suffering.
Their settlement will pay
for their suffering.
The church should offer them solace.
If you offer them solace,
you are rejecting our advice
and acknowledging your liability.
It's like this, Your Excellency--
offer them solace, or keep your diocese.
We are not lying.
We are not dissembling.
We are buying their silence.
We are doing exactly what we do
in the confessional--
we are keeping our sins
between ourselves and God.
Our sins against innocent children.
Your Excellency,
nobody weeps more
for these children than I do,
but they will heal.
The families will heal.
With God's help,
even this priest will heal.
But if we admit this,
if we acknowledge this,
if we parade his sins
before the world,
this diocese will not heal.
It will wither and die.
And if this diocese dies,
a piece of the church dies,
a piece of Holy Mother church,
a piece of God.
And no child, no family,
no priest is worth that.
We're still buying their silence.
It's the only way we can obtain it.
Your Excellency,
I need your permission
to instruct the lawyers to pursue
an immediate and secret settlement.
"Prayers on the left."
"The left, Robbie.
Hold up your left hand, Robbie."
"Take the veil off the chalice."
And then I do the little pitchers.
I mean, crusets.
"Cruet. Cruet."
There you go, Father.
You're all dressed now.
Now, when you're done reading,
you'll sign right down there
at the bottom.
And tomorrow morning,
your boys will get $40,000.
And once a year
for the next 4 years,
they'll get themselves
another $40,000.
$200,000, my friends. U.S.
Wait. No, wait.
There's nothing in here about Father.
No. There's nothing in here
about what he did.
There's nothing in here
about what they're gonna do.
I am--there's nothing
to be worried about.
-The Bishop himself told me.
-No, we want it in here.
The church figures that this
is church business, period.
What about the other families?
Well, I can't breach
any confidences, Daniel,
but let me just say that I have
7 sets of signatures on that thing
and I am now waiting
for the eighth and ninth.
No, this is what it's all about,
is getting rid of him.
It seems to me that if this
is so important to you,
maybe you just better say no,
withdraw your action.
What the hell?
It's only $200,000.
Oh, now, now, I'm sorry.
Take it easy.
Why don't you folks go on home
and--and talk it over, hmm?
Now...keep this in mind.
Your boy's getting treatment.
He'll be paid back
as soon as you sign.
Father ain't around,
your friends are going along,
and $200,000 buys
a lot of peace of mind.
All right, I'll see you all later.
Oh, and another thing.
Nothing to worry about,
but the church is--
is kind of set on
paying everybody at the same time,
sort of one for all, all for one
kind of situation.
You take care, now.
[Door closes]
EMM: That lawyer didn't get us
what we wanted.
-He said that the Bishop told him--
-Why won't the Bishop tell us?
-Now, Emm, you know.
-I know. He's too busy.
The Monsignor is too busy.
Every damn priest in my church
is too busy to give us a little comfort
for what one of their own
did to our son.
And too busy to tell us whether
they're going to stop him
from doing it again.
They don't care about us.
They just want it over with.
GIRL: I want to fight!
I want to fight!
BOY: Girls can't fight.
Come on. We're all gonna have
another piece of cake.
-BOY: Can we have candles?
-GIRL: We did that.
We're gonna do it again.
I'm sorry to bring it up here, Pete,
but we want to take it.
We're near broke and we need that money.
I swear it.
It's the waiting,
and trying to hang tough.
It's hurting the boy.
All the boys.
Can we talk about it later?
Tomorrow, maybe?
I ain't stalling you.
Click, click.
Click, click.
I can understand your frustration,
but that's what children do.
They don't talk, they act.
It's way too soon to expect him
to talk about anything to you.
-He's talking to you, isn't he?
-Well, actually, no.
In a case like this, with a child,
you don't want to force him
to relive everything.
So, you use another technique
to find out what exactly happened.
Separate the imaginary
and the embellished from the truth.
But you've got to do it at his speed
so he doesn't feel threatened.
It's not like confessional.
But how come he's not getting better?
Maybe you better try a little harder
to convince him
that Father's not coming back.
Well, they won't say that he isn't.
-Why don't they put him in prison?
-Emm, we've been through this.
But that's where he belongs,
the son of a bitch.
MAN: We commend our sister
Caroline to you, O Lord,
beloved teacher,
servant of your church,
devoted friend to all who knew her.
May she live on in your presence.
In your mercy and love forgive
whatever sins she may have committed
through human weakness.
We ask this through
Christ our Lord. Amen.
Let us pray.
Father, God of all consolation,
in your unending love
and mercy for us,
you turned the darkness of death
into the dawn of new life.
Show compassion toward
the people in their sorrow,
in our refuge, in our strength.
MAN: Lift us from
the darkness and this grief...
MAN: Peace and light
in Your presence.
Listen to our prayers,
but with love for your people.
You stay right there, Father.
You come near,
I'm bound to hurt you.
Good-bye, Father.
God help you.
God bless you.
D.A.'s office is supposed to be here.
Third floor.
Sit down, Mr. Guitry.
PETE: I can't.
Well, then, stand still.
You're making me dizzy.
I've been a prosecutor for 9 years,
and in those 9 years, I've taken but
one child molestin' case to court,
and I lost that one.
And the defendant
wasn't a priest.
But there's 9 boys.
I don't see anybody here but you,
which means there's
just one boy-- yours.
Now, tell me something, Mr. Guitry.
When you first heard it,
did you believe it?
Yeah, well, neither will a jury.
Take this.
Get on with your lives.
[Pressing buttons on phone]
Molly. Ken Loring.
Is Claude there?
Hiya, Claude.
No, I'm not prosecuting
one of your clients, thank God.
I want to send you some people.
Name of Guitry.
They got themselves a problem.
I thought maybe you
could help them out.
I'll tell them.
[Hangs up phone]
His name is Claude Fortier
and he's one...sss...
well, I'm not gonna spoil it for you.
I push this like this,
and then I push this.
Now, Molly, how many times
I gotta tell you?
Don't make the clients
do your work. Ha ha!
You must be Robbie.
I'm Claude Fortier.
-What's a client?
-Well, you're a client.
Client's what we lawyers call
our customers.
The way a doctor
call his customers patients.
Ha ha! Yeah, it makes it sound
real unselfish,
like a public service or something. Ha!
Mr. Guitry. Mrs. Guitry.
Heh. Well, come on, client. Let's go.
Ahh. You, too. Come on.
Sit over there, Robbie.
Yeah, up there.
Come on. Sit down.
Ahh. So.
Just what is it you want me to do?
Help us put him in prison.
-That's what you want?
-Can you do it?
-Oh, yes, I can do it, Mrs. Guitry.
Well, you fire Dave Davis
and you hire me.
I sue, but I don't settle,
no matter what they offer.
I go to trial, I win.
I take the transcript
of the trial to the D.A.
He goes to trial, he wins.
Father Aubert goes to prison.
That's how.
-All right. Do it.
-Yeah. Yeah.
What about you, Robbie?
You want Father to go to prison?
You know how you send
a man to prison?
Dad says I have to tell a lot of people
what he did to me.
That's right.
Now, can you do that?
You sure?
You tell your dad yet?
Your mom?
What about this doctor
you've been seeing?
But you want to tell
a whole lot of other people.
Strangers. Is that right?
So. Still want to fire Dave Davis
and hire me?
-Can we have a minute?
Take the settlement.
We don't want that damn hush money.
Now, listen, hush money's better
than no money at all.
No, it ain't. We can't.
It's like saying to them,
"OK, go right ahead.
"Do whatever you want to my son.
Destroy him, whatever you want."
I won't say a word.
I won't press charges.
"I won't lie awake at night listening to
him locking the doors and the windows.
"I'll just take your money
and forget all about it.
Just pay me and my son
will be innocent all over again."
We can't. We just can't.
Molly, draft a letter to Dave Davis.
You know the form.
And fix your face.
We're about to sue God.
You want to cut that, Pete?
[Turns engine off]
Me and Father was thinking
today would be a good day
to talk to you,
me being your friend
and him being your priest and all.
Actually, me and Father
and the rest of the families.
Know what I'm saying?
I could use one of them.
I don't get
in anybody's business,
but me and Father
and the rest of the families,
well, we heard you went
and you hired this commie atheist,
and you put yourself in his hands.
And I gotta say to you, Pete,
and the rest of the families
will back me up,
and Father will back me up.
Right, Father?
It's cutting all our throats.
Yours, too, Pete.
You're making us all bleed.
-Is that right, Father?
-I'm talking to you, Pete.
Are you talking to me, Father,
or are you just here to hold his hand?
You're out of line, Pete.
Father, I'm waiting for you
to back him up.
The church is deeply concerned.
What about you, Daniel?
Are you deeply concerned?
I guess you must be.
You and all the other families.
$200,000 is a lot of money.
You got no right to keep our boys
from getting that money.
I ain't keeping your boys
from getting it, Daniel.
I just ain't taking it for mine.
You live here! You ignorant
mule-ass son of a bitch!
Here! With me and Maddie
and Grace and Bob and Lucille and Arthur
and all the rest of us!
And with Father and with the Monsignor
and with the Bishop.
What the hell's wrong with you?
You keep doing what you're doing,
you might as well
move to goddamn Russia.
Ha ha! You ain't
deeply concerned, Daniel.
You're scared. You're so scared,
you're pissing down your leg.
I can smell it from here.
[Both grunting]
Ohh. [Coughing]
You being my friend and all,
tell me something.
How come you and all
the other people that live here,
just like I live here,
how come you aren't backing me up?
[Turns on engine]
Afternoon, Dave.
I got a good mind to file a formal
complaint with the Bar Association.
They don't like lawyers who steal
other lawyers' clients in mid-case.
I don't know what the hell
you promised them, but you lied.
-I got him a fair deal.
-I know you did.
-I did wonder why they came to me.
-Because they're greedy.
Oh, that must be it.
I'll see you around, Dave.
It won't work.
The diocese made a deal
and they're sticking with it.
Is that a fact?
Well, I'll see you around, Dave.
Hello there.
That's not him.
The address.
It's the diocese.
-5 years ago.
Charges dropped by complainant.
Yeah. Who is?
Jane and John Doe, on behalf
of their minor son John Doe, Jr.
Yeah. The charges were against?
A young priest named...
BOTH: Father Delambre.
Ha ha!
Well, well, well.
[Chuckles] I don't want you
to steal anything, Father.
I'm sure the Monsignor
has a copy machine, right?
I want to help.
I know the harm he can do.
I want to help.
Tell me what else I can do.
-Just tell me.
-There's nothing else.
-I can't do it.
-Oh, you're wrong, Father.
You can find Father Aubert's
diocese file.
But if you can't,
I'll find John and Jane Doe.
Their son John, Jr.
Who is still a minor.
And I'll make you the defendant.
He can't help himself.
Neither can I, Father.
[Turns on engine]
Holy shit.
Yeah. Holy shit.
Gentlemen. Claude Fortier.
Fortier. Pleasure.
May I introduce Mr. Poujade,
who represents the diocese.
And Mr. Hummel,
who represents the lead insurer.
My executive assistant
Miss Landry.
Over here, honey.
We're having tea, but if you'd
prefer coffee or something stronger,
Father'll be happy to oblige.
Uh, coffee, please, for two.
Black. Ahh.
I...I thought this was supposed
to be informal.
Oh, it is. Otherwise,
I'd be taping. Ha ha!
In your calls
to the Monsignor, counselor,
you indicated
that your clients were prepared
to file their own action
against the church
and were seeking
drastically more satisfaction
than that negotiated by Mr. Davis.
-Is that correct?
-That's correct.
You also indicated to the Monsignor
that your clients were taking this step
because you had come by
certain new and, in your words,
appallingly damaging information.
You see, the--
Excuse me. Your coffee.
Father Aubert has been molesting boys
for 10 years now.
You people not only knew it
and did nothing about it,
you kept putting him
where he could molest more boys.
That defies credibility.
Yes, it does.
But it's true. Swear to God.
Isn't that right, Monsignor?
I instruct you
not to answer that question.
Ah...if we assume
this information is true,
which we do not,
what do you propose?
Give my client $750,000.
Make sure Aubert goes to prison.
You mean have him arrested?
Or get him to turn himself in.
Plead guilty to whatever
he's charged with.
Uh, if you'll excuse us
for a moment. Monsignor.
If you do, there'll be no trial
and no publicity.
If you don't, we'll sue you.
And the D.A.'ll indict him.
You'll have two trials.
Nothing but publicity.
We'd like to think about this.
Well, I wouldn't. Good.
Come on, Molly. You don't need us.
MAN: We'll be in touch, Mr. Fortier.
Oh ho ho ho.
I'm sure you will.
FORTIER: Ha ha ha ha!
Father? Oh. Monsignor.
Forgive my hands.
I envy you.
I always prayed for a green thumb.
An unanswered prayer.
The Bishop would like you to perform
a small service for the church.
Oh. Of course, Monsignor.
The Bishop would like you to surrender
to Kenneth Loring.
He's in the district attorney's office.
And plead guilty to any charge
Mr. Loring decides to bring.
The charge,
as I'm sure you've guessed,
is the sexual abuse of a minor.
I don't abuse minors.
-Who are the boys? My boys?
-I love my boys.
-They are not your boys.
Oh, yes, they are.
Children belong to people
who love them the most,
and nobody can love them the way I do.
And if you think what I do with--
Monsignor, I give them all my love.
All of God's love.
Can their parents do that?
Hmm? Can they?
No. They neglect them.
They beat them.
But if Monsignor wants me to surrender
to the district attorney
and plead guilty for letting God's love
flow through me,
then I'll do that right now.
I'll do that this minute.
The Bishop wants you to surrender
to Mr. Loring, Father.
The Bishop.
The Bishop would like to avoid a trial,
as I'm sure you would.
A trial, Monsignor?
Are you going to have me arrested?
The families are.
God bless you, Monsignor.
Come on, Robbie. Get up.
That-a-boy. Yeah.
You want to sit over there, please?
Now, this is a courtroom,
and this is a witness stand.
Now, Robbie, you're the chief witness.
You're the most important person here.
Now, I want you to get yourself ready.
All right, make a fist.
Come on. Make a fist.
Open it. Again. Again.
That's it.
You get all that blood
working in there.
Now, take some deep breaths.
That's it.
Come on. In, out.
In, and sit up straight.
You got 100 people out there
watching you. And don't fidget.
Jury'll think you're lying.
Over here's the judge.
Now, right here's a big table
with 6 lawyers sitting there.
First one's getting up now
and he's coming over to you.
You ready? Yeah.
Robbie... your lawyer
just helped you tell us
what Father Aubert did to you.
Now I'm gonna help you tell us, OK?
What did Father Aubert do to you?
Court's waiting, Robbie.
He played with me.
With my--
We didn't hear you.
With my pee-pee.
More than once?
How did he play
with your pee-pee?
He touched it.
Face the jury.
You can't tell us or show us how?
Now, what else did he do?
He made me play with his pee-pee.
-More than once?
-All-- a lot.
Now, let the record indicate
that the witness made a gesture
whose meaning is not clear
to the court.
[Slaps knee]
Proceed, counselor.
What else did he do?
He--he--he put--
he put his pee-pee down there.
Down where?
Where you do number two.
-More than once?
What else did he do?
He made me kiss it.
-Kiss what?
-His pee-pee.
-More than once?
What else?
He took pictures.
May I remind the court that no pictures
have been introduced in evidence,
nor has anyone besides this witness
testified to the existence
of any pictures.
Robbie, do you know the difference
between lying and telling the truth?
FORTIER: What is lying?
It's when you make something up.
Did you ever make anything up?
Don't look here.
Did you ever make anything up?
-Jury can't hear you.
What did you make up?
I made up that I killed the bear,
or an alligator.
Sometimes a wolf.
What else?
Face front. Don't look here.
OK, you can look at me now, Robbie.
Did you ever make up
anything at school?
Sometimes, I guess, about grades.
Yeah. What about your sister?
Did you ever make up
anything about her?
Only when she's mean to me.
Ahh. Did you ever
make up anything to tell
Father at confession?
Only if I didn't do anything real bad.
Yeah. Now, Robbie,
do you know what
your pee-pee looks like?
Good. Now I want you to tell us
what Father Aubert's
pee-pee looks like.
Tell us. You played with it.
You kissed it.
You had it down there, so you say.
So, tell us what
Father's pee-pee looks like.
-Tell us. God damn it, Fortier.
-Tell us!
You can't, can you,
because you don't know, do you?
You made it all up,
like the wolf and the alligator
and your grades
and your confession.
-Didn't you make it all up?
-It's true!
-It's true!
-Oh, it is? Oh.
Then why can't you tell us
what his pee-pee looks like?
Come on, tell the truth, Robbie.
You made it all up, didn't you?
You can't do that in court.
There are 5 more boys
just waiting their chance at him.
It's all right.
It's all right, honey.
It's all right.
What the hell do you
think you're doing?
Stop it! Stop it!
Get out of my way.
Let go! Let go
or I'll break your damn arm.
Get in here!
Go ahead, cry.
Cry all you want to.
-Cry. Cry all you want to.
Shut up!
Cry? I'll show you crying.
You're gonna cry so loud
they're gonna hear you in L.A.
Get up! Get on your Goddamn feet!
God damn it. Get up!
On the sink! Vomit!
No, take your pants down.
Take your pants down!
You get them down!
Oh, my God.
Oh, my God. I'm sorry.
God. I'm sorry, Robbie.
I'm sorry, son.
It's just everything looks so bad.
It's not your doing.
I know it's not your doing, son.
I'm sorry.
God, forgive me. I'm sorry.
I can tell them, Dad.
I can tell them all about it.
I know you can, son.
I know you can.
It's a bad idea.
Why, Dad? I'm not afraid.
You'll get hurt, son.
And I'm afraid for you.
Why, Dad?
You're brave.
You're like me. You're brave.
Put your hand on the Bible.
Raise your right hand.
Do you swear to tell the truth,
the whole truth,
and nothing but the truth,
so help you God?
I do.