Libel (1959) Movie Script

Directed by.
London, in 1959.
- Gotta match?
- No. I'm sorry, I don't smoke.
- Hello boy.
- Pinka.
- Pink. Thank you.
- Hello, is this yours?
- Yes, he is always doing that.
- He is very friendly.
Don't you believe it.
He bit a man last week.
I'm glad, he is in a better
mood tonight.
Come on.
Good boy.
- On top form tonight Fred?
- I can't do a thing right.
- Good evening, Betty!
- Hello Maisie!
- Would you care for a drink?
- Thanks. I usually have a gin and tonic.
Good. A gin and tonic and a beer, please?
Coming up!
- Are you in town for long?
- No, just two days between clients.
- Have you been to London before?
- Yes, yes.
- I was here during the war.
- Really?
Hey Maisie, I haven't seen you
for days. How have you been?
- Three and three, sir.
- Thank you.
- Gin!
- Thank you. Cheers!
- Cheers!
- Look Maisie...
This is the BBC Television Service.
Tonight in our series, 'Historic
Country Houses'
we are privileged to visit Ingworth,
the home of Sir Mark Loddon.
You join us in one of the loveliest
Elizabethan houses in England.
And here tonight welcome us
Sir Mark and Lady Loddon.
Now Sir Mark, if you will, we'd like you
first of all, to tell us something about
the house and its history.
I think your family has
always lived here, in Ingworth.
Yes, ever since it was built in 1580.
It's a record we rather proud of. The
family built it and we still live here.
Would you like to come on the grand tour?
Very much.
Hey boys, we're missing
the big fight.
Charlie, switch it over.
Excuse me sir.
- Hey, switch that back, will you?
- Leave it Charlie?
- Look, I've got to see that program.
- Well, you ain't gonna see in here, mate.
That's enough sir. I don't want
any trouble here.
- He's got him cold.
- I've got a dollar on him.
- Do you live near here?
- Well yes, just around the corner.
- I share a flat with a girlfriend.
- Good.
What are you getting at?
Nothing doing.
- No No. Have you got a television set?
- What?
Have you got a television set?
Here we are, it's over there.
Doesn't this darn thing work?
- Give it a chance to warm up.
- All right, then. Come on, come on.
Oh, I don't know
what all the fuss is about.
One TV program is same
as any other.
It's quite a great deal these days
maintaining Ingworth.
Yes, if we didn't open the house
to the public at weekends,
and certain other holidays, we shouldn't
able to afford to live here, anyway.
You are the seventh baronet, aren't you?
Yes, I am.
That's the first one there,
Sir John Loddon.
You know it's quite remarkable
after all these years.
- The family like this, I mean.
- Do you think I like him?
- Yes, you got the Loddon face.
- Can't see it myself.
One's a very bad judge
of one's own face.
Oh, yes, darling, he is just like you.
Except for the weight.
- You really want to watch it?
- Shhh...
What a splendid room.
But we hardly ever use it.
Not really since the war.
Of course, you were a prisoner
of war Mark, weren't you?
Yes, I was taken prisoner
at Dunkirk.
When were you released?
I escaped just before the end of the war.
Just in time for the celebrations.
I was in no condition to celebrate,
I was in hospital for 6 months.
Oh... That's lovely, isn't it?
And then you were discharged from
the army and got married soon afterwards.
That's right, yes.
And your son was born in the following
year? - Yes, on Christmas day.
- Are we going to see him tonight?
- Oh, I'm afraid not.
He is asleep in his nursery.
At least, I hope he is.
I dare say, a lot of famous people
have dined in this room. - Yes.
Queen Elizabeth I.
Charles II.
Margaret you're better at this
than I, you take over.
Naturally I'm American. And
you know what Americans
are like when they are
hotfoot after culture.
Well, it was Marlborough
and Disraeli.
And this will surprise you,
Benjamin Franklin. - Really?
- Yes.
- At all around this table?
By the look of it
you are expecting them again this evening.
We've laid it out especially for you.
For me?
For you and the viewers.
It set exactly as it was
for my husband's 21st birthday party.
Is it?
That would be interesting to know
who the guests were on that occasion.
Could you name them for us, Sir Mark?
Ah, the guests...
- You want to know their names.
- Yes.
mostly just friends and relations.
Won't you name just a few for us?
Just one if you like?
- Well I...
- Don't you remember?
No, I don't remember.
I'm terribly sorry. I
don't remember. Is
anything strange in that?
Not strange at all, pal.
Not strange at all.
As matter of fact my husband hates
all family ceremonies.
- Oh, a lot of people do.
- Well I like them. I love all tradition.
I'm fascinated by
all the things my husband
has always taken for granted.
He's taking a lot
for granted, that guy.
Well don't tell me you know him?
If it's who I think it is, I know him.
I think we mustn't trespass on your time
any more. Lady Loddon we must go.
Come on, your hand.
Let's see your hand.
And to you Sir Mark, being so kind.
- Good night.
- Thank you very much, indeed.
That was a visit to Ingworth
the home of...
Thank Goodness that's over.
Are you going to buy me a drink
or something? I need it.
Here. Buy yourself a bottle.
But... Aren't you coming with me? I
thought you didn't take off the two days.
I may not take off at all.
Oh, thank goodness that's over.
- Good night!
- Good night!
- How do you think it went?
- Fine.
Except when I made a fool of
myself just now. - Oh, nonsense.
His fault was for asking those
stupid questions.
Oh, you can't blame him darling.
It was just bad luck.
- How could he know?
- Know what?
That you can't always remember the things
that happened to you before the war.
What should I have done?
Tell the hell country in general
that the war changed my life?
Except for the memory.
It hasn't changed that much, has it?
Hasn't it?
I don't know.
I was only 26 and I hadn't had a gray hair
on my head.
And now you are an old, old man.
Settled with a possessive wife.
Now that part I rather like.
Darling. Shall we go up?
Ahh, no. Not just yet.
I feel a little restless.
You go up.
I'll join you presently.
All right darling.
- Good night!
- Good night!
I thought you did very well.
Get out! Get out! Get away!
I'm sorry.
- I'm terribly, terribly sorry.
- Oh, darling, darling.
I had to come down. I heard you playing
that same tune again.
Yes, I know you did.
Let me help you. Tell me.
It came from nowhere.
I wasn't even thinking about it.
It suddenly started.
It went on and on and on,
beating in my brain.
And always always stopping
at the same place.
Why does it always do that? Why?
Yes, but this time there
was something more,
wasn't it?
Yes, there was something more.
Standing there I saw a reflection,
behind me in the looking glass.
And then the music stopped.
And I knew then at that moment...
that those two things were
part of my nightmare.
The tune and the reflection.
And for one second...
I knew quite clearly
what that reflection was.
Darling, it was me.
It wasn't you.
- It wasn't you.
- Who then?
I don't know.
Something I've forgotten.
Oh, darling I can't help you.
I can't help you!
And I want so much to.
I love you so.
Whatever happens...
or whatever I do...
you'll never leave me, will you?
Because I need you.
I need you.
Ingworth, In Norfolk, England.
Welcome to Ingworth House.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Ingworth is hardly altered at all
since the first day it's stood here
in the valley,
before the Spanish armada sailed.
This way ladies and gentlemen...
Well, ladies and gentlemen,
if you all have the seen the dining room
I'd like to take you to the next item
of interest, which is the long gallery.
But first of all, may I draw your
attention on this magnificent staircase,
which is of course part of
the original building.
Well now I'll take you upstairs
to the long gallery.
This way ladies and
gentlemen, please.
Both sides up it all goes the same way.
Robert, put that down!
Come away, both of you.
Thank you.
- Good afternoon, sir.
- Good afternoon, Pete.
- Had a good day?
- Yes, sir. Nearly 500.
- Very good day.
- Did they break anything?
- No, sir. Not this time.
- That's a blessing.
Baa, baa, black sheep,
Have you any wool?
Yes, sir, yes, sir,
Three bags full;
One for the...
- master,
And one for the...
- maid,
And one for.
The little boy Who lives down the lane.
You make a very charming picture you know.
Hello, daddy.
- What would you call the picture?
- Oh I don't know.
Domestic bliss, I suppose.
No one can fit in more perfectly
with the surroundings.
Thank you, sir.
I'm glad you think so.
Come Michael now. You go off to the
kitchen, take those to Mrs. Bead.
- Take Jason with you, darling.
- Yes, take Jason with you.
Come on, Jason.
Just think if we'd never met,
you and I.
There'd be just you and just me
miles and miles apart.
A dreadful thought.
- What would you be doing?
- Oh, working.
- New York. In some office, I suppose.
- And you?
I wouldn't be alive.
I... have a feeling.
That I won't have that
nightmare again.
When I...
when I shouted at you last night,
- You won't laugh at this, will you?
- Oh, darling I'm not laughing at you.
I felt... I felt as if a devil had gone
out of me.
I think for good.
Yes, really.
I'm not even
I'm not even frightened
of that tune anymore.
What are you doing in here?
These are the private apartments,
you know.
Did you lose your way?
I'll show you out, right?
I know you.
- Jeffrey...
- Buckenham.
Of course.
Alpine Camp 1945. The same hut.
Of course I remember you.
Jeffrey Buckenham from Montreal.
Where had you been all
these years?
Well, why didn't you contact me sooner?
Now that you're here, don't think
you're going away so easily.
You'll stay for dinner, won't you?
Maggie will be delighted to see you.
You remember Margaret, don't you?
I told you all about her.
Oh, we finally did get married.
Here at Ingworth church.
it's really good to see you again.
- How are you?
- I'm fine.
- How are you?
- I'm fine.
Hello Frank!
What did you say?
Your name. Just your name,
Frank Welney.
I'm the one with the bad memory.
My name is Mark.
Don't you remember? I remember.
That's the trouble.
I remember that hand.
I remember your theme song.
What are you talking about?
You, the English baronet.
Yeah, you played the part pretty well,
Frank, but I'm afraid the show is over.
What is this? What do you want?
You forget I was there.
I know what happened to Mark.
And I'm going to make you
pay for this.
If it's the last think I do
I'm gonna make you pay for this.
Pay for what?
Oh, I see what it is.
Money, that's it.
A case of a little blackmail.
Oh, no. You got me wrong Frank.
I'll name the price alright
and you'll pay it.
But it won't be
just a few pounds.
I want a lot more than that and
I'm going to get it.
I want to see you crawl, Frank.
I want the whole world to see
what a louse you are.
Get out! Get out!
You damn fraud.
Get out!
I'm not gonna touch you.
What I'm gonna do is gonna
hurt a lot more.
I'm sorry, I can't stay
for dinner, Frank.
Who was that?
A war time companion.
- Why did he call you, Frank?
- He mistook me for someone else.
Someone we both knew
a long time ago.
- Good afternoon, sir!
- Good afternoon!
Can I speak to
Captain Gerald Loddon, please?
- Certainly, I just get him.
- Thank you.
Nice, isn't it?
- Captain Loddon?
- Yes.
Sir Mark Loddon's cousin.
- Yes. Why? Do you know him?
- I met him during the war.
Ah, splendid.
How do you like the new cars?
They're pretty hot stuff.
I'm not really suppose
to talk about speed,
most of our customers are a bit slow.
Look, I'm here on a personal matter.
If Mark Loddon hadn't come back
from the war...
you would have
inherited everything.
What are you getting at?
Only this.
Mark Loddon didn't come back
from the war.
I remember.
That's the trouble, Frank.
I remember.
What is it?
I don't know.
So you see from what I said,
he can't be your cousin.
I don't know if what you say is true.
It is true. I was there.
I don't deny he has changed
a bit since the war.
Almost a different man.
But you know I hardly feel
I can do anything about it.
Well if you won't do anything I will.
I will go to the police.
But I doubt if they would listen to you.
Somebody is going to listen to me.
I want to get this thing
out to the open.
You know you could always...
Always what?
No, if I were you I would forget all
about it. - What were you gonna say?
Well I was only going to say
you could always go right
to the press.
You know an open letter
publicly exposing him.
Some papers would jump at it.
- What papers?
- Well, the...
Sunday Gazette for one.
It's right up their street.
You know fearless exposure,
Sunday Gazette speaks out for justice.
They love that sort of thing.
As it happens they don't love
my cousin, Mark.
Thank you.
Now look old chap. I didn't mean
that I shouldn't have spoken.
You may get into trouble.
Besides I'm very fond of my cousin.
He is not your cousin.
And I want trouble.
- Mommy?
- What is it, darling?
Mommy, mommy, come here!
Michael, what's the matter?
- Who are you? What are you doing here?
- Sorry, we're just taking a few pictures.
- Did you get Sir Mark's permission?
- We sent our message out...
- But did he give you his permission?
- No, he didn't.
Stop it! Michael go on up
to the nursery.
How dare you come bursting
in here like this.
Take it easy. We got a job to do
and a living to make same as anybody else.
- You're news?
- News?
You should know.
- You are Lady Loddon aren't you?
- Yes, I am.
Well then, what do you expect?
After that letter in the Gazette.
- Letter? What letter?
- Haven't you read it?
Must be the only one. Here.
BOGUS BARONE Fraud and impostor.
Not very nice, is it?
You got your pictures.
Now, will you please go?
Come on, Harry.
Who were they at the church?
Mark, I think you gotta see this.
Oh, yes. I have seen it.
Pete showed it to me.
But who could write such stuff.
Was it that man
who was here the other day?
- The man who called you Frank?
- Yes, yes, it was.
I have told you
he'd made a mistake then.
He's got mad and paper's mad
for printing it.
- What are you going to do?
- Do?
I'm going to ignore it.
What does one do with muck like that?
We shall be late darling.
I don't think I want to go.
Margaret, you must go.
We've got to go.
My dear, isn't it awful?
About Mark Loddon I mean.
If you mean that rubbish
in the paper Mildred...
Excuse me, does sir Mark Loddon
always come here to church?
Well, nearly always,
but I don't expect he will today.
- Why on earth not Mildred?
- Well, under the circumstances
you hardly expect him to show
his face in public.
Unless of course, she made him.
She is an American and you know
how Americans adore publicity.
I mean if he doesn't, well.
One knows what to think.
- Doesn't it?
- Exactly.
Dear Lady Loddon. I am so sorry.
Of course, I don't believe a word...
My dear, my dear.
Don't let this ridiculous rubbish
worry you too much.
Nobody there seems to believe it.
Would you care to make a statement,
Sir Mark?
Can't you see I'm busy.
I told you I don't want to
talk about it anymore.
- I really don't understand.
- There is nothing to understand.
The Gazette is being a little
more vulgar than usual. That's all.
You're not going to do anything about it?
What do you want me to do?
Go to court and expose
my whole life in public?
Your life? It's my life, too.
And Michael's.
All right. Supposing I do sue for libel.
Do you know what it means?
It means going to the witness box.
Having the last shreds of privacy
ripped from us.
Being plastered over in every newspaper
in the land. Do you think I want that?
Mark, there's nothing you haven't
told me, is there?
I've told you there's nothing.
Isn't that enough?
Or do you think I'm an impostor too?
I haven't thought of that one.
Oh, Mark.
But at least that's something.
But you still want me to go and prove
who I am. What for?
For some tiresome neighbours, some boring
acquaintances. Why? What for?
For Michael.
I don't care for myself.
But you don't want a cloud over him.
Perhaps for the rest of his life.
You must Mark
for his sake, you must.
No, I won't.
Please, Mark, please.
I know our life together.
Our whole future depends on it.
I didn't think he dare.
Just listen to this.
A lot of people let's go into the office.
A summons from the
High Court of Justice.
Sir Mark Loddon against the
Sunday Gazette and Jeffrey Buckenham.
Plaintiff claims damages for libel.
Oh, the fat is in the fire, isn't it?
It sure is he's in for it now.
- You seem very confident.
- I am.
I hope so for your sake.
By the way, I've been looking through
my correspondence with Mark.
I've got something to show you.
There's a rather curious sentence
on this page, I think might interest you.
Well, this proves what I've said.
That's for the court
to decide, isn't it?
Now you hang onto it,
it might be of use to you.
But please don't disclose who gave it to
you because if you do, I should deny it.
All right. Will you be in court?
Well if I am it will be give
evidence for my cousin.
Well, I have to, you know. Blood is
thicker than water and all that stuff...
But don't worry, I don't
think you will find
anything I have to say
or do will be helpful.
I see.
You really must excuse me,
I got some customers to attend to.
Good bye. See you in court.
It's time to go darling.
I shan't be a moment.
How long do you think
the case will last?
About 2-3 days, I should think.
- Maggie...
- Yes?
- If anything should happen...
- What could happen?
I don't know.
But things may not turn out
just as we hope.
you're quite sure there is nothing
you haven't told me?
Because if there is anything...
you must tell me now.
No, no.
I've told you all I know.
Then things can only go one way.
You've got the truth on your side
and that's all it matters.
You'll have to be very brave, you know.
This is going to be...
going to be quite annoying.
I'm ready for it.
Shall we go?
Loddon against the Sunday Gazette
and another.
My Lord, I call Sir Mark Loddon.
Repeat after me:
I swear by Almighty God,
I swear by Almighty God...
- that the evidence I shall give,
- that the evidence I shall give,
- shall be the truth,
- shall be the truth,
- the whole truth.
- The whole truth
- and nothing but the truth.
- And nothing but the truth.
You are Sir Mark Loddon?
The seventh Baronet of Ingworth House,
in the County of Dorset.
That's so.
And I believe Sir Mark that you joined
up at the outbreak of war,
and went to France with your unit,
- in 1939.
- Yes, I did.
Were you wounded and taken
prisoner at Dunkirk? - I was.
And did you subsequently escape from the
prison camp Hobhigh
known as Altflag 9A
in April 1945?
- I did.
- What effect that have on you?
My hair went grey.
- As it is now.
- And your health?
- Apart from my memory I don't complain.
- What of your memory?
It's unreliable.
It's unreliable about events which occurred
before my escape.
I mean it's...
it has great gaps in it.
There is some things that I...
remember quite clearly.
Things which keep coming up
to the surface like...
like wreckage.
But there are quite odd things,
quite distrunted
very trivial things.
Nothing is too trivial if it helps us
to arrive at the truth.
What are these trivial matters
to which you refer?
Well, I remember...
I remember that I had a linnet,
in a cage.
It was given to my own 5th birthday
by the head gardener.
I remember his name, too.
It was Mr. Sal.
Do you remember old Sal, John?
The... the cage was...
it was too small.
The bird kept fluttering.
Really quite trivial things.
Other more important events
and people I don't remember at all.
Have any members of your family have
ever found difficulty identifying you?
And these of course are the people
who know you most intimately.
And now the Sunday Gazette,
which proudly claims
the readership of...
of... Give it to me!
Of 1200036 registered readers.
- Are you one of them?
- No.
I don't subscribe to the gutterpress.
Have you ever in public
voiced your distaste
of the sensational
type of journalism
practiced by the Sunday Gazette?
Yes, once I made a speech locally.
In which I expressed my opinions
in no uncertain terms.
And would it be true to
say the Sunday Gazette
has lost no opportunity
to try and discredit you?
Yes, I am told so.
I choose to ignore it.
And that these petty acts
of spitefulness have culminated
in the publication
of a gross libel
which you do not choose to ignore.
No, I do not.
Thank you, Sir Mark.
I think that's all.
I suggest that ever since April 1945
you've indulged in the unscrupulous
pretense of being an English baronet.
That's a stupid lie.
And most unscrupulous pretense of all
of being entitled to woo
and marry your wife.
You won't make me lose my temper
as easily as that, Mr. Foxley.
We shall see. Now then.
When did you last see Frank Welney?
Whom did you say, Mr. Foxley?
Frank Welney, My Lord.
You at least have heard of Frank Welney?
- I was with him in a German prison camp.
- When did you last see him?
Let me help you.
Did you shave yourself this morning?
Yes, why?
Didn't you see him then?
Really My Lord, is it necessary from
my friend to be so deliberately offensive?
I think you must Let him pursue
his own mind, Mr. Wilfred.
- Have he any peculiarities?
- No, he was a very ordinary man.
Wasn't he remarkably like you?
- I never noticed it.
- I see, you never noticed, no...
Well now then I wonder if you know
whether Sir Mark ever wrote to anybody
about this similarity?
Did I? No, certainly not.
Do you recognize the handwriting
on this letter?
- Yes, I do.
- It's yours.
- Of course, it is my signature, right?
- It's signed, Mark Loddon.
It's a page of a letter written by
Sir Mark Loddon
from the prison camp in Germany
and contains pertinent information.
Would you please read it
to the jury?
There are only two other
British prisoners in our hut here.
A chap called Buckenham
from Canada, and a
man called Welney, from
heaven knows where.
Proceed please.
Welney himself says we might be brothers.
He says it makes him feel like
one of the family.
"Feel like one of the family."
Doesn't that letter recall
anything to you?
"One of the family."
Yes, it does.
It was a day that Buckenham
was giving out the mail.
Here chap.
Sorry, not you.
- Letter for you Andr.
- Merci!
Letter for you, Mark?
Hey, that's not yours.
All right, all right,
you boring Canadian lumberjack.
Just remember you gave it to me.
You know it damn well
because I thought...
Thought I was Mark, didn't you?
Ah, there you are. I'm
frightfully sorry old
chap, our lumberjack
friend made a mistake.
He thought that I was you.
I opened it without even reading it.
You were reading it as quick as
you darn well could.
That's just exactly a kind of remark
I would've expected from you.
Shut up, you two!
I'll hit him if I stay here.
He really is impossible, that chap.
So uncouth.
I just wish we could have have him
transferred to another hut.
Jeff's a very good friend of mine.
If it wasn't for him, I would have been
off my head years ago.
You don't think I was deliberately
reading your letter, do you?
No, of course not.
I'm glad of that Mark.
You don't mind me calling you Mark, do
you? It's rather presumptuous of me.
It's a bit silly after 3 years,
wouldn't it?
You see it's so frightfully good
to talk to you Mark.
You understand people.
I'm quite sure that lumberjack
just said that I was...
a little snob sucking up to you.
Oh, don't be silly.
I realize perfectly well
compared to you,
I'm absolute nothing,
I am just a...
provincial actor, small parts.
No background, no standing.
But what's a chap to do?
One can't get on in the theater these days
unless one is in with the right people.
Talent is I am afraid is really,
not all together enough.
And I am quite talented.
Well, perhaps you'll have better luck
when we get out.
I certainly mean to get on.
I assure you that.
Mark, I am sorry about the letter.
It was from your fiancee,
wasn't it?
I saw her name on the envelope.
Or does one say, envelope
in your accent.
I don't think it matters why?
One doesn't want to make mistakes.
Would you give her my regards
when you write?
You and I being so like each other
at least people say we are.
Almost makes me feel like
one of the family.
It just goes to show, doesn't it
how easily some people can be mistaken.
Can they?
I am lucky enough to...
have here an official description
of Welney from the army records,
"Thick, crop of grey hair."
How would you describe yours?
Mr. Foxley, what is
the date of that document?
The year 1939.
Supposing a man's hair had not
been grey then
surely it could have turned grey
after all these year.
I am aware of that, My Lord.
Indeed it hadn't largely disappeared.
It has for so many of us.
But it is also on record that
Frank Welney
has lost the first two joints of the
first finger of his right hand.
Have you? - Would you please hold
up your right hand to the jury?
May I ask how you lost your finger?
- It was shot off during the escape.
- How very convenient.
So that would produce the interesting
result that no one in the prison camp
could remember that Sir Mark Loddon
had lost his finger.
- But I do.
- Thank you.
And so today by another
remarkable coincidence
your body combines all the physical
peculiarities of both Welney and Loddon.
So it would appear.
When did you say you last saw Welney?
I repeat the question.
When did you last see Frank Welney?
It was during the escape.
Was anyone else a party
to the escape?
Would you please tell us
exactly what happened?
Well, we...
we started away from...
from the camp...
We were making our way
to the Dutch border.
Hiding by day and walking by night.
We had very little food,
and not much sleep.
One night we...
we came to the outskirts
of a town.
All right, they have gone.
I could eat a horse.
Better go and find one.
We'd not eaten for 3 days.
And Buckenham...
Yes, Buckenham?
Well there was...
there was a...
a kind of farm across the field.
So we decided
amongst ourselves that...
one of us ought to go
and find something.
And I wanted to...
but you said no, because I was
the only one in British uniform
and anyway you were
the youngest.
Do you mean Mr. Buckenham?
Oh, I'm sorry. Yes.
Then he left us.
And eh...
And then?
Welney and I...
were left to wait for him.
You were alone together.
We were alone together.
And then?
And then...
Yes? And then?
There was a mist.
And water moving.
Pulling and waving.
And Buckenham crawling away.
Something... in the water.
- And Welney.
- And Welney?
What about Welney?
What about Welney?
What happened to Welney?
I can't remember.
So you can't remember.
How very interesting.
I can't remember!
I've told you. I can't remember
anything after that.
It's not because I don't want remember
because I can't.
I remember a mist.
I remember water.
And Buckenham, crawling away.
That is all!
You made a great deal of this
loss of memory.
Even if it isn't so complete.
How is it possible for you to remember
your pre-war engagement,
and the lady's name on your return?
Do you refuse to answer that question?
I did forget her.
I forgot her name, her face,
her very existence.
But she wrote to me
while I was in hospital
and her letters revived
my memory of her.
Could you produce any letters written
by Sir Mark Loddon
which refer to his wound
- and his loss of memory?
- No.
No, I can't produce any letters
like that.
I never wrote about those things.
Rightly or wrongly, I...
I kept them from her.
You seem to have kept a great deal
from her.
If I am Welney,
what became of Loddon?
That's a very interesting question
which I don't propose to answer now.
Thank you.
That will be all.
Mr. Foxley I think this might be an
appropriate moment for an enjoyable lunch.
Lady Loddon. Excuse me,
a fellow countryman of yours
Barry Medox,
American Press Service.
I'm sure people in America would be
interested knowing how...
Lady Loddon has nothing to say.
Will you leave us alone please?
Excuse me.
Hello Hubert, what's good today?
The trout's excellent.
My learned friend highly recommends
the trout.
Which is a very good reason for
having the turnout. - Now now.
You mustn't be too put off by Fox's
professional manner.
We fight like angry stags in court
but outside we are the best of friends.
Now then this afternoon
should be quite straightforward.
I'm going to call your relatives
as to discuss and after that
I should like to put Lady Loddon
in the box, just to clinch things.
You'll do no such thing.
Why not my dear fellow?
Just a few simple,
straightforward questions.
Lady Loddon is our principal asset.
She'll ensure the jury's sympathy.
You speak as if there was some doubt
about the result of this case.
Darling if he thinks it will help...
No it's quite out of question.
I won't have you humiliated in that box.
The whole thing's sordid
without dragging you
into it. That's the end
to the whole matter.
Captain Loddon, when you were
questioned by my learned friend,
you said, you
recognized your cousin
Of course, Known him all my life.
I often went to Ingworth on
holiday when we were kids.
But I use to bully him a lot then.
I remember on one occasion we were larking
around and he felt down from a tree.
He still has a scar to thank me for.
- Then another time...
- Just a moment.
This scar you mentioned. Where is it?
On the left leg, just about the knee.
- You're sure?
- Oh quite positive.
Yes, thank you.
I have here Captain Loddon
report of a full medical
examination to which the
plaintiff was good enough to
submit to at our request.
It contains no reference to any scar.
I don't quite understand that.
As I remember it was a pretty serious cut
that had several stitches in it.
I'd say that scar would still be there.
I'm quite prepared to believe that
Sir Mark Loddon had a scar
but the plaintiff obviously hasn't.
- Look I hope you don't think...
- Thank you Captain Loddon.
I should like to re-examine
this witness, my Lord.
By all means.
Apart from the question of the scar
about which there appears to be
some conflict of opinion,
you are absolutely certain are
you not that the plaintiff
in fact Sir Mark Loddon.
Yes, of course, except...
- Nothing, I'm absolutely certain.
- Exactly.
Thank you Captain Loddon.
I consider it absolutely essential that
we should call Lady Loddon...
- On no account.
- She knows you better than anybody.
The evidence about the scar
could be very damaging to us.
- I said no.
- Lady Loddon I appeal to you...
Not if Mark doesn't want me to do.
- Sir Wilfred when you are ready?
- I beg your Lordship's pardon.
I have no further witnesses to call.
In that case we will
adjourn until tomorrow.
Excuse me.
LIBEL CASE LATES Back a winner mister?
Looks like it.
- Are you awake?
- Yes.
I can't sleep either.
But you must.
I'll get you something.
You'll need all your strength
for tomorrow.
Why did you never tell me that
there was a time when you've
forgotten me all together?
I thought it might be...
might be the one thing
you couldn't forgive.
And that you wouldn't marry me.
I didn't know you then
as I know you now.
Take it. It'll make you sleep.
Why didn't you tell me afterwards?
After it didn't seem to matter.
And anyway...
I thought it might hurt you.
Hurt me much more
hearing it like that today.
Do you think it didn't hurt me
to have to say it like that?
Oh darling, that was a horribly
selfish thing for me to say.
Forgive me.
It isn't very often that
I have to do that, is it?
- Good night.
- Good night.
- Maggie.
- Yes?
It happened again today.
- In court.
- I guessed.
I was remembering the water...
and something moving in it.
When the music stopped.
Of course.
It was a reflection.
It was the same reflection
I saw on the looking glass that night.
What is it?
What is it? What is it?
It was only yourself.
If it was myself why does it frighten
me so much. Why? Why?
Supposing it were true.
Supposing what were true?
That I was not myself.
That that other man...
How can you be?
What do you mean?
Oh, darling I am your wife, I know
who you are.
And I'll swear it in court
if you let me.
Loddon against the Sunday Gazette
and another.
Part 3rd
Jeffrey Buckenham.
What is your full name?
Jeffrey Buckenham.
Heh heh, Buckenham is on.
Buckenham is on.
And you are the author of the letter
in the Sunday Gazette.
Have you gained anything
by its publication?
Not yet.
Do you stand to gain anything?
- A lot.
- Financially?
- No.
- What then?
Personal satisfaction.
- Mark Loddon was my friend.
- You say, was.
Yes, I said, was.
- He is dead.
- My Lord, I really must protest
against such a monstrous statement.
- Unsupported by one shred of evidence...
- Really my Lord, my learned friend
does more credit to his
heart than to his head.
Evidence will be forthcoming.
Now Mr. Buckenham you heard
the plaintiff described an incident
which occurred in prison hut,
when you mistook Welney
for Sir Mark.
Was that account accurate?
Part of it was but he left out a lot.
Would you please describe
the incident in your own words?
Like he said one day
I came in with the letters.
Letter for you, Mark.
Oh, Merci!
That's not yours.
All right, all right,
you boring Canadian lumberjack.
- Just to remember you did give it to me.
- Well give it back.
You dirty, little thief.
Caught him reading your letter.
Our lumberjack friend
made a mistake.
He mistook me for you.
- I opened it without even looking at it.
- You liar.
You were reading
as fast as you could.
I caught you reading them before.
Oh for Heaven's sake Jeff. Shut up!
Then you shut up too with all this
lumberjack stuff.
You both sound like a couple
of kids and you know it.
Fact is we...
we are getting on each other's
nervous, yeah?
Not really surprising,
being caged up like this.
It's a rotten thing, a cage.
I once had a bird in a cage.
A linnet.
It was given to me by old Sal,
the gardener. My 5th birthday.
Cage was too small the bird was
always trying to get out.
I was used to imagine what it was feeling.
It must have been rather fun.
- All those birthday parties at Ingworth.
- Yes, they were.
Did you have a special one for your 21st?
Yes, I think so.
I have spent my 21st
in theatrical lodgings.
in Darlington.
I don't think it matters
where you spend
your 21st As long as
you were with friends.
I was alone.
Always that same tune,
doesn't he know any other?
No letter again for you?
Don't have one for quite
a while, have you?
No, she stopped writing months ago.
I guess she got tired of waiting.
Oh, I see.
Look, why don't you write to Maggie?
She's like it if you
did, she'd write back.
Wouldn't she think it a little bit...
She wouldn't be a little bit anything.
You don't know Maggie.
No, I don't.
What's she like?
Oh, she is American and very pretty.
I didn't mean that.
What's she really like?
It's rather difficult to describe her
really. She is...
When you are with her,
you're at your best.
Even quite dull people become amusing
when they are in her company.
Even people you don't like
very much, you suddenly
you suddenly find there...
nice things about them.
Things you didn't know
were there.
Do you know what I mean?
- Yeah, I know what you mean.
- Well, you write to her then.
What happened with the linnet?
- The linnet.
- Oh...
I let it go.
So that would account for the plaintiff's
vivid memory
of his 5th birthday present
from the head gardener, Mr. Sal.
Wouldn't it, Mr. Buckenham?
Yes. Yes, it sure would.
Did anything further come
of this incident?- Yes.
He kept asking Mark questions
about personal things.
even the furniture in the rooms.
I told Mark that he was preparing
to be his understudy.
And if he wasn't careful, he
would take over the star part.
At the time I was only kidding.
But then one afternoon I was lying
in my bunk,
well, he didn't know I was there.
Mark Sebastian Loddon.
I know you almost
as I know myself.
And this is one performance I can give
complete with affection.
A change of hair,
the change of voice,
and I am...
Mark Sebastian Loddon.
Seventh Baronet
and owner of Ingworth House.
One of the stately
homes of England.
I'm also one of the luckiest men alive.
Margaret Madison, Maggie.
The girl I intend to marry.
I met in Ascot,
in 1939.
Hey you, clown? You leave Maggie
out of this.
Our great actor was pretending
he was you.
He is taking over Ingworth.
I haven't taken over Ingworth
at all.
I was merely doing a little
impersonation of you
which I thought I might do at
the Camp concert. Do you mind?
No, not a bit as long as it's good.
Let's hear a piece of it.
Really well you are the most
insufferable boor. I don't know
why we put up with you in this house.
- It's very good.
- I'm glad you like it.
Do you know one of the Poles actually
mistook me for you the other day.
He must have been making
fun of you.
You know if you could dispose of me.
I believe you could go
back to Ingworth.
Take over.
And there won't be anyone the wiser.
Do you really think so?
I wonder...
I might do it if you aren't
really careful.
Yes, Mister Buckenham.
That's what you did.
That's just what you did.
You killed him.
My Lord, this is intolerable.
Is there no limit
to the license allowed
- this witness?
- Silence!
We appreciate your point, Wilfred.
- The witness will...
- But he did!
I know it now, I know it.
If the witness's persist in interrupting I
will have him held for contempt of court.
Please, confine yourself
to answering the question.
- Proceed Mr. Foxley.
- I thank you, you Lordship.
Mr. Buckenham about the escape.
Was the plaintiff's account accurate?
Yes, up to the point that I left him.
Then what happened?
Well, I...
I managed to get some food
and I was making my way back.
Er ist schon tot.
Los gehen wir shon.
And you're absolutely certain Mr Buckenham
the body was Mr. Mark's?
Certain. He was the only one of
us wearing a battle dress jacket.
Were you certain he was dead? - I know
that 'tot' is the German word for dead.
And you're reasonably certain the
man you saw making off was Welney?
Yes, he was the only one was
wearing a leather jacket.
Thank you, Mr. Buckenham.
My Lord, I will dispose of the evidence
of this gentleman,
with the brevity it merits.
Although it's not strictly necessary
for me to do so,
I will deal with the fantastic
charge of murder.
You say when you returned from foraging,
you heard shots.
- Yes.
- Were you...
or Welney, or Sir Mark
carrying firearms?
- No, of course not.
- Well then I suppose you were right.
And the man you saw escaping was
Welney and the body was that of Sir Mark.
It follows, doesn't it?
That Welney couldn't
possible have shot Sir Mark.
Kindly answer the question.
- Yeah, I guess so.
- Thank you.
The jury may conclude
that the man who was made
one wildly irresponsible
and palpably false statement
is not incapable of having made another.
And now let us turn to
this famous impersonation.
You say, you came across Welney
rehearsing an imitation of Sir Mark
for a camp concert.
I mean...
What he was doing before he knew
I was watching...
wasn't for his act.
It wasn't that kind of thing.
He was practicing being Sir Mark.
Did you like Welney?
I hate his guts.
So that your interpretation of his
intentions could hardly be impartial.
And so on the strength
of a five minute imitation.
You are suggesting that Frank Welney
could over the years
have persuaded Sir Mark Loddon's
nearest relative,
his family who knew him
ever since he was a little boy.
The lady to whom he was betrothed
and whom he subsequently married.
You have the effrontery to suggest
that he could persuade all these people
that he was Sir Mark Loddon?
I gravely doubt that anybody else would
accept such an outrageous suggestion.
Now then let us come to the escape.
You said immediately after the shots
you saw Welney making off.
Did you see his face?
And the body on the ground
in British battle dress.
Were you close enough to see its face?
No, but I told you he was...
My Lord, on the witness' own evidence
it was dark and misty.
He saw a figure in a leather jacket.
He saw a body wearing
a British army jacket.
And that was all he saw.
I don't think we need detain
this gentleman any longer.
Court will now adjourn.
I don't suppose we should even be seen
together, but I must talk to you.
- Look, there is no...
- Listen.
You must listen to me.
Before I saw you in the
witness box I thought
you must be a madman
or a blackmailer.
Now I know you neither.
I believe you are telling the truth
and I know you really love Mark.
- Thank you.
- Know one who didn't could have
described so well the Mark
that I fell in love with.
But now you made a mistake.
- Have the courage to say so.
- How can I?
I saw him lying there dead.
But you just said,
you couldn't see his face.
How can you be sure it was Mark?
Are you sure the man
you married is Mark?
Is he the same Mark
you felt in love with?
Well, naturally because of all his...
Do you think I like
doing this to you?
You see.
I feel I know you.
well because...
Mark talked so much about you.
Made me feel rather proud
because he...
let me share a little bit of
how he felt.
- Sorry, I can't put it into words.
- You don't have to.
Do you know the last time he spoke to me
it was about you?
Was it? - Yes, it was that
night I went off to get food.
He left Welney and came after me,
trying again to stop me and go himself.
He said that if anything happen
would I take back the last thing
that you gave him?
- Well of course I wouldn't let him.
- The last thing I've ever gave him.
Yes, it was a little charm, a medallion.
Well, of course I didn't let him...
He didn't bring it back, did he?
- I expect he lost it.
- And he's never mentioned it, has he?
- He's probably forgotten all about it.
- The
last thing you gave
him before France.
- He's forgotten so many things.
- Yes.
He's forgotten so many things.
I'm sorry.
Mr. Buckenham.
Mark has forgotten so many things
much more important things
than my medallion.
But one thing I know,
he is not this Frank Welney
you described.
He is Mark.
Your name is Heinrich Schrott.
You are physician and surgeon
to the mental home at Cleaves.
That is true for the last 20 years.
Mr. Schrott is your English good enough
to enable you to follow my questions
without an interpreter.
Sufficiently, yes.
I've learnt the language from
a phonograph playing records.
- Splendid. I...
- Splendid, yes.
I hope your memory is
equally good, Dr. Schrott.
Can you by any chance remember
something which happened
two days before
the surrender in 1945?
Yes and no. So many things
happened those days.
Was someone brought to you who've
been found near Oxbridge over the canal?
Yes, a man in a British
army jacket.
What was his condition
when he was brought to you?
Terrible. More dead than alive.
- But he had not been shot?
- No.
Skull fracture.
The face unrecognizable.
Right arm smashed,
we had to amputate.
You didn't happen to notice
whether any of the fingers were missing?
No, it was an emergency operation.
I don't remember now.
- Did your patient die, doctor?
- Yes and no.
The body of my poor unfortunate
slowly recovered but
the mind is lost, blows,
damaged his brain.
- I see.
- He breathes.
It is true he eats, he sleeps but...
he is not alive.
the extinction of life
is murder, is it not?
Would you so kind as to tell us
what has happened to this living corpse?
Ever since he's been
an inmate of our home
we call him Nummer Fnfzehn.
Number 15.
Number 15? Why?
That's the number of his bed,
we have no other name.
I understand you can produce 1 or 2
exhibits associated with this sad case.
Khaki jacket. Number 15
was wearing at the time.
As the jury will see for themselves it
is that of a Major's of the British Army,
the rank of Sir Mark Loddon.
You say Dr. Schrott no one has been
able to identify him.
Isn't it possible that the sight of
a well-known face
might revive the memory
of this unfortunate man?
It's just possible.
Please, bring Number 15 into court!
You bloody swine.
Doctor, did your patient ever say anything
even unconsciously to indicate his
assailant might have been known to him?
Might even have been a former friend?
Nein, nein, it was not a friend.
It was a murderer.
Is there anything at all about the jacket
that might indicate its ownership?
Apart from the fact that it belonged to
a Major in the British Army.
- Nothing.
- Then I need hardly remind the jury
that there was more than one Major
in the British Army.
Now I want you to be perfectly clear
on one point doctor.
Nobody has identified him.
Nobody claims to know who he is.
That is so.
And I'm going to suggest you
that he can not possibly
be Sir Mark Loddon.
Since Sir Mark Loddon is here
alive and well.
My Lord, surely that's for the jury
to decide.
Is this man Mark Loddon
or is he Frank Welney?
I suggest that after this evidence
the jury can give but one answer.
That will be all, Dr Schrott.
Sir. Mark, I'm going
to call your wife.
After that evidence I
have no other choice.
Sir Mark, this is our only hope.
- All right.
- Lady Loddon, please.
I would like your Lordship's permission
to call Lady Loddon.
- Certainly.
- Lady Loddon.
- What is your full name?
- Margaret Loddon.
Take the book in your right hand
and raise your hand.
Repeat after me.
- I swear by Almighty God,
- I swear by Almighty God,
- that the evidence I shall give,
- that the evidence I shall give,
- shall be the truth,
- shall be the truth,
- the whole truth.
- The whole truth
- and nothing but the truth.
- And nothing but the truth.
You are Lady Loddon?
Wife of Sir Mark Loddon,
seventh Baronet of Ingworth Hall?
In 1946 you were married at
Ingworth church.
Was the plaintiff married to you
bearing the name of Sir Mark Loddon?
And did you at any time have any reason
to doubt his identity?
And do you still believe
that your husband the
plaintiff in this action
is Sir Mark Loddon?
Lady Loddon?
No, no he is not Mark Loddon.
Lady Loddon I feel we owe his Lordship
and the jury an explanation.
I called you to give evidence
for your husband.
The court realizes that this trial has
been a very great deal to you.
Do you still wish to affirm
what you have just said?
I must ask you to answer
my question.
Yes, I do.
What made you change your mind?
What I have just seen and heard.
But at what point did you know,
did you come to believe...
that your husband was not
Sir Mark Loddon?
When I saw he recognized
Number 15.
And that poor creature
recognized him.
I'm going to put it to you that you may
have misinterpreted what you just saw.
I couldn't misinterpret the horror
and the guilt I saw on my husband's face.
Lady Loddon, you are married
to the plaintiff.
You have lived together
as husband and wife.
You have a child.
You've never had any doubts up to now.
I'm going to suggest to you
that the shock of your recent
experience has clouded your judgment.
No! It is cleared it.
I have always known that
the Mark who came back to me
was not the Mark I knew
and loved before the war,
but I thought that was because
all he had been through.
Now I know,
he never came back at all.
I have no further questions to put.
Lady Loddon believe me I would willingly
spare you any further questions,
but there is just one
that must be answered.
Must not then that pitiful creature
be Sir Mark Loddon?
Behind those terrible scars
couldn't you recognize him?
No, I couldn't.
But he did.
I saw his face.
He did.
He did! He did!
I think the witness should
be allowed to rest.
I have no further questions, My Lord.
This noise in court, please.
In that case we should
adjourn until tomorrow morning.
Open the door!
Open the door!
If you won't let me in,
at least listen to me.
- Please, please, listen to me.
- I'm listening.
Please, open the door.
I must see you.
I won't come in.
I swear, I swear.
I need you.
- Who needs me?
- I do. I do.
The man you loved,
the man you married.
- You did love me, didn't you?
- Yes.
And all through the years you
went on loving me, didn't you?
And it was me, wasn't it?
Not just someone called Mark Loddon.
But me, me, myself.
Nothing can make that love unreal.
Yes, because you were unreal.
I believed you were Mark.
So I imagined I saw in you the man
I'd fallen in love with.
The man who had changed because of
all he'd suffered.
And who needed me all than more
because of that.
And I gave him all
I had to give.
And now, now I find I've been living
with a stranger.
- I love you.
- Don't touch me.
A stranger who stole my love,
my sympathy, my understanding,
By a confidence trick.
It wasn't. You can't believe that.
You can't believe that everything
about me was false.
My love,
my need for you.
Not everything.
Your terror was real.
But it wasn't the terror of something
you couldn't remember.
Your terror was of something
you couldn't forget.
The murder of a friend.
My Lord, with your permission I must
bow to my client's insistent demand.
That I should call him
to the witness box.
- Certainly.
- Are you going to the box, Sir Mark?
Sir Mark, you had the opportunity
yesterday of seeing the jacket,
produced by Dr. Schrott.
Yes, I did.
Whose jacket is it?
I have no doubt at all
that it is mine.
- You identify it as yours?
- Yes, My Lord.
You mean that your jacket was on Number
15 when he was discovered by Dr. Schrott?
- Yes, I do.
- Will you tell the court,
how your jacket came to be
on the man, known as Number 15?
I put it on him.
After Buckenham went to find
some food that night,
Welney and I waited for him.
I beat him and beat him.
I only knew it was my life or his.
And I wanted it to be mine.
When he was still...
I ripped off his leather jacket
and changed it for my battle dress.
But they heard me and fired some shots.
One shot hit my hand.
But I got away and two
days later I was picked
up by a forward patrol
of British troops.
When you first gave evidence, did I
hear you take the oath?
Did you swear to tell the truth
the whole truth?
Why didn't you tell
the whole truth then?
I did.
Up until yesterday that's all
I could remember.
And what is it that has so miraculously
opened the book of your memory?
Seeing Number 15 standing
before me yesterday.
For years now I've been haunted
by a sort of dream.
In which there was always
mist and water.
And something moving in the water.
And running through my
head the fragment of a
tune always ending at
exactly the same place.
I only knew that these things
meant violence.
When I saw Number 15 yesterday,
I knew quite clearly in that instant
that his terrible twisted face,
was the image in the water.
But I knew no more than that.
When my wife...
denied me in the witness box,
I knew quite clearly that
one of us was Welney,
one of us was Loddon
but I didn't know which was which.
- What then?
- All night I tried to remember.
And then just before dawn...
I was standing by a canal,
watching my own reflection
in the water pulling and twisting.
And suddenly the tune started again.
And broke off in
exactly the same place.
And my reflection...
became his.
Twisted and mad with hatred.
And it was Welney.
And now my memory is quite clear.
Is that the truth? Have we got it now?
Or are we still hiding something?
The truth is that
Number 15 is Welney,
and I am responsible for him.
So you admit to being a man capable
of a brutal murder?
Is there any evidence to
substantiate your story?
Apart from my own word,
- No, My Lord.
- I see.
Mr. Foxely, would you like to make
your final address to the jury?
May it please, your Lordship?
Members of the jury. This case
which began as a case for libel,
has turned into a case for
attempted murder.
So it seems to me, members of the jury,
that you are confronted...
- My Lord!
- You're interrupting counsel.
May I be permitted to examine
my jacket again?
Well certainly. I don't see how it can be
of any help to us.
Asha, pass the jacket to the plaintiff.
There might be something inside.
Something I hid in the lining.
It should be a... little medallion.
Silver and the enam...
Here it is.
This was the last thing my wife gave
to me before I went to France.
I even asked Buckenham
to give it back to her.
If anything should happen to me.
He said nothing would.
Oh, my God!
Tell them. Tell them!
You must tell them!
My Lord!
If you wish to give an evidence
you must say it from the witness box.
My Lord!
The story about the medallion
is true.
Mark and I were alone
when he gave it to me, so...
Welney couldn't possible
have known about it.
He is Mark Loddon.
My Lord, it's abundantly clear that
the plaintiff has been the victim
of an appalling mistake.
If your Lordship will allow me a moment
to confer with the plaintiff's counsel
the jury won't be troubled in this case.
Certainly, certainly.
I feel sure Sir Wilfred will not find my
clients ungenerous.
I will adjourn the case to allow council
time to come to terms of settlement.
Will you leave the question of
the damages to me, yeah?
Sir Mark.
Will you leave the question of
damages to me? - Yes yes, anything.
Enough to keep Welney for his life.
I never had any doubts.
Come along Hubert. Your client can
pay for the champagne.
That's not all he'll have to pay for.
My dear Mark, let me be the first
who congratulate you.
Thank you.
Hello Jeff!
There are no words.
Just thank you.
Thank me?
After what I have done?
What you have done,
you did for me.
And I shall never forget for
that, ever.
You've restored me to myself.
You've given me back everything.
Thank you.
Are you coming home?