Night Song (1947) Movie Script

Well. Here we are, children. Chez Mamie.
Don't look like Mamie is home.
Is this what Connie raved about?
An alley?
I thought little girls were warned by
their mothers to stay away from alleys.
Wait until you see inside.
It's priceless.
Then I'm glad I got my check-book.
Who's the band?
You've not heard of them
but they're divine.
Here they are. Chick and Swing Six.
Isn't he cute?
I'm interested in Mamie. Is she cute?
You'll find out.
Hello and welcome.
We're a little crowded.
Rain always blocks in the amateurs.
Cute is hardly the right word.
Here we are.
When do you have to return the clothes?
Isn't this priceless?
Already I feel like a new woman.
Simply, I'm just another
ermine coat but here...
I begin to live. I guess I'm just
a patron of the lower arts.
How do you like the band?
- Very solid.
Where did Mamie play football?
- Isn't she priceless?
Is that music solid or not?
The symphony is over, dear.
Let your hair down and be human again.
- Shall I put a ring through my nose?
See what I mean?
- So, she is a square.
How did you ever find this dive?
I got a traffic ticket one night
looking for a really rip band.
The cop sent me here.
How long is the intermission?
- Maybe fifteen minutes.
Maybe not.
So you wanted to hear some riff music
and you got a traffic ticket, huh?
I went to get some cigarettes one night
and came to in a cabana in Acapulco.
That's what I get for telling the truth.
Once when I was seven I told the truth.
So they locked me in my bedroom
all one Saturday afternoon.
Since then, I only tell the truth when
I want to get locked in my bedroom.
I wonder what ever happened to Cathy.
Did I say something?
Light me a torch will you, chum.
You're likely half drunk, and want me to
play a song that reminds you of a guy.
Well, you are out of luck
until this gets finished.
I call it a 'Concerto for Sweeney'.
And I'm never going to end it.
How does it sound?
Hey, Miss M.
Don't you think you'd better
come back to the table?
Why should she, buddy?
I am Exhibit A around here.
I'm the blind piano player.
She wants to know how I can find
the keys with only my fingers.
You tell her. It's a Braille piano.
That's what I like about you.
You are such a friendly guy.
But you still have something brother
that even a mink coat can keep out.
I got something that will
keep out a mink coat.
She certainly went for that music.
She has brains to go with the diamonds.
Fall in love in your own time.
You seem pretty unhappy so I
think I ought to say something.
Now, this is a very
hospitable clip joint.
Mamie doesn't like anyone to be unhappy
unless it makes them want to drink more.
So, I thought I ought to apologise
for my friend at the piano.
I didn't know he was blind.
A lot of very nice people are blind.
He is nice himself.
Except when he gets around music,
something happens to him.
See what I mean?
Well, that's the way the world rolls.
Connie, this is mister...
- Hello.
I'm very solid.
Perhaps we'd better go.
- I know.
That's not Tchaikovsky.
I'm an old woman with
my left foot in the grave.
I forget what happens in
the world after midnight.
Something has happened to you.
I didn't wake you, did I?
I've not missed hearing you return since
you got kissed by that football captain.
Where did you get that music?
Someone played it tonight.
- He did?
It's lovely music.
It's not that lovely.
Don't be such a wise old ogre.
I just can't make it sound
as beautiful as it really is.
I'm your aunt which
is a blood relationship.
I also run this house.
I don't want to be a nagging old crone.
So tell me and get it over with.
What on, darling?
I'm not completely immunised
to love's young dreams.
What does he look like?
So you went somewhere
after the symphony.
And someone played this
nice music for you.
Describe him.
Well. I think he was tall.
He had dark hair.
His face was strong and very sad.
He had marvelous fingers.
What did he think of you?
He was blind.
When are you going to finish that thing?
Come on. A beer.
I know. You heard it foam.
I may not be the poor man's Stokowski.
But I've been around music ever
since I was knee high to a clarinet.
And I think it's good.
- So, it's good.
You play a sweet piano but
so do a lot of other guys.
Maybe not as good as Jos Iturbi
but a lot better than Jos Dhost.
That's not the point.
- And so?
You are a hard guy to talk to.
Go ahead. I'm listening.
I'm hanging on every word.
The point is you write music.
You dream it up.
I think you are a genius.
But coming from a schmoe
that won't impress you.
You are wrong twice.
First, you are not a schmoe.
And I am impressed.
But when you get into this
'artistic mode' you can be a bore.
But never a shmoe.
I can understand that
when a guy goes blind...
It's a bit tougher than tripping
over his own shoelaces.
It depends.
No it don't.
You can trip and kill yourself.
That leaves you with
practically no problems.
Or you can break a wrist and...
Eat with one hand for a while.
When a guy goes blind...
But you shouldn't let
it get to your music.
So you are blind. But Schubert is dead.
It isn't the guy. It's the music.
Can you see what I mean?
I can't see.
You should have gammed that mink coat.
A pure white gown. Blue eyes.
Red nails.
Sounds like a flag.
You know.
That's what you miss.
I can feel rain or snow.
Touch a diamond or a fog.
Smell a rose or a river.
But color...
Hit the kip.
Can't it go?
Is that it?
I don't like to bring a crash
note into your daydreaming...
But I have some checks
here for you to sign.
Put them on the desk, darling.
Membership renewal.
The Symphony Society.
A box for the ballet.
And that benefit concert.
Am I boring you?
There's also a letter from your mother.
Florida is beginning to bore her.
She's thinking of going to London.
London because she thinks she'll be able
to find out if Paris is habitable again.
She wondered if the
idea might intrigue you.
Would you want to go to
Paris and buy a new dress?
Would you?
Paris reminds me of my youth.
A horrible thought.
Yes. I am still here.
Sun Valley, Palm Beach, Paris, Capri.
Walking through the Louvre as though
it was the Saks Fifth Avenue of culture.
That was alright before the war.
I didn't know any better.
This is worse than I thought.
Everything I can do
doesn't mean anything.
It has to mean something now.
I wish your father were
around to hear all this.
He always wanted to do something.
But all he ever did was
make a million dollars.
There are easier things to do.
It was not as hard as
what he wanted to do.
He wanted to create something.
He wanted to write music.
You don't create a million dollars.
You make it or steal it or earn it or...
Or trap it.
Music, you've got to create.
Then you have done something.
However good or bad it is, it's yours.
It means something and it's beautiful.
Like a 20-dollar bill never is?
Nobody despises money
like the rich people.
That isn't it.
If it's economics,
I don't understand it.
But if it is love, which I suspect...
You have my permission.
You don't even believe me.
I'm a cynical old
girl but I believe you.
You can't do anything about it today.
This afternoon you're going
to the chorus musicale.
- No.
That's what I'm here for.
Files, ledgers, books.
You could always burn them.
There's something obscene
about music in the afternoon.
People should be
selling stocks or bonds.
Or playing golf.
Tonight, I'm going to take a long
hot bath and read a detective story.
You can't think of the profound
pleasure there is in such a prospect.
Especially after...
Where are you going?
- What?
Think nothing of it.
Oh, I'm sorry. You mean tonight?
I'm going dancing.
A jolly good idea.
A very nice young man.
Doesn't he want to marry you?
He is the sort of young man
women should be happy to marry.
They seldom are.
They like rascals and vagabonds.
But they only marry a George.
One of the tragedies of life.
You can't put salt and
pepper in the same shaker.
George is alright.
That's what I mean.
It can't be that late.
Where's George?
I came home in a cab.
Have some coffee.
No thanks.
What happened with George?
He's an absolute 24-carat idiot.
About 18-carat I think.
I'm going back there.
- To George?
Well, I wouldn't go if I were you.
If I were you, you might
wind up like me.
I hope I do.
I will go with you.
They say it's never too late.
Cato didn't learn Greek
until he was eighty.
I am going alone.
I begin to see what happened to George.
You don't approve, do you?
I'll let you know when you get back.
Who killed 'er?
Who killed the black widder?
Who took a broom and a fryin' pan...
Hit her on the head and
took it on the lam?
Who killed 'er?
Who killed the black widder?
Who beat her up until she was dead
and left poor me in a jam now?
I am just the district attorney.
A very intelligent mouse.
How could that villain escape me
when I was right here in her house?
Who killed 'er?
Who killed the black widder?
Who threw her out in the garbage
can and let without a clue?
Well, I think and I do
believe it was... you.
Who killed 'er?
Who killed the black widder?
Who took a broom to her spider web...
And pulled her by the
hair right out of her bed?
Who killed 'er?
Who killed the black widder?
Who beat her up with a kitchen
chair and hid her body and fled?
Now, I just got a confession.
The butler told me the deal.
I caught him in the pantry
with a bloodstain on his heel.
He killed 'er.
He killed the black widder.
He told me she'd poisoned
him but he got her instead.
So, case dismissed. It's self-defense.
And I'm mighty glad she's dead.
Table for two?
- For one.
We've got a rule here, sister.
- Really?
Against dames sitting alone.
But I think...
- Well, don't think anymore.
No chance.
No. It ain't him.
He quit last night.
He quits about once a month.
He's a very unpredictable
character, Miss Mallory.
What will you have?
Do you mind if I have a cup of coffee?
- Two coffees please.
How did you know my name?
I saw your picture in the paper
when you joined the army.
And I was in that London hospital when
you brought Kryster to play for us.
A small world.
Was he blinded in the war?
No. Afterwards.
He had his own band before the war.
I started with him.
Now he is with me.
What happened?
When he went blind he went sour.
That music he played the other night.
Was it something of his own?
The piano concerto he started
two, three years ago.
He won't finish it.
Won't finish it?
He is Mr Blind Man and nobody
with eyes can tell him anything.
How about somebody without eyes?
Do you know somebody?
I was just thinking.
I don't get you.
You've got a zillion dollars
and a pretty boyfriend.
What do you keep slumming after him for?
The music.
I can't get it out of my head.
I think it's fine.
I want to help a man who can
write like that any way I can.
That's all.
- You couldn't help him.
I could try, couldn't I?
I live with him. I know the guy.
I pour his beer, I make his bed.
I read books to him.
I spell out the big words.
I take him walking on the beach.
I know the guy. The only thing he wants
from a gal like you is to be left alone.
I think you are on the level.
But that won't get it.
We forgot the marinated
herrings for the seagulls.
Come on. Let's take a walk.
One of these times
we'll fish in the surf.
Only fish I ever caught was a silverfish
in the pocket of an old tuxedo.
You might catch a halibut
with that clarinet.
Just don't let the fresh
air go to your head.
You forget how old and soft you are.
Many people on the beach?
No. Just a girl.
- Yeah.
I thought I recognised your voice.
Hello there.
My companion left me for a while.
- He did?
No. She.
You really do remember me, don't you?
- Oh, sure.
Maybe you don't know
my friend Dan Evans.
Dan, this is Miss...
- Mary Willey.
In case you had forgotten.
- Mary Willey.
How do you do.
You may be holding out
your hand, Mr Evans.
But if you are, I can't see it.
I am blind.
Yes. I told you about him, didn't I.
Of course. Dan Evans, the pianist.
Look, why don't you two sit down
and I'll go back and get the beer.
I hear you are a fine musician.
So, you are blind.
Do you like music?
I love it.
What do you like?
Bach. Debussy. Stravinsky.
I like Gershwin, the Duke, and Baker.
You know his stuff?
People think he was just a man with
a horn but he played a good piano.
He died too soon.
I would like to hear you play sometime.
No. I don't play anymore.
I just do boogie-woogie for
beer and a hamburger.
Because I like to eat.
I wish you would teach me to play.
You must like to be around blind people.
I don't.
I didn't think of it that way.
It's just that...
Music is about all I have to live for.
I asked him to teach me
to play the piano and...
Now I think he's angry.
He is an angry man.
Now, if you want to take up clarinet
maybe we can talk business.
Have some suds?
- No thank you.
Do you... do you play at all?
A little.
What do you care? She's busted.
She couldn't pay you anything.
He is a very mercenary character.
That's why he's a second-rate musician.
Come on, Chick.
Let's walk.
I'll see you around Miss...?
Well, what do you think?
I don't know. With him you never know.
Are you with me or against me?
I'm right where you put me.
Dead in the middle.
You don't think I'll get away with it?
You can try.
But one thing.
- Yes?
You can't pull anything
from your fancy palace.
No mink coats. No limousines.
Nobody loves a millionaire
except politicians.
Or his morals. And me.
Be poor. Get some joint with
a piano and a hotplate.
You know. Clean but crummy.
Here's a high one.
And duck.
Like the man said: clean but crummy.
They should be here any minute.
How do you really feel about this?
- Scared to death.
You remember who you are, don't you?
It is my badge of office.
You are still my aunt and
companion but now you paint.
I paint.
I can't even bear the
smell of turpentine.
[ Buzzer ]
I'm Chick Morgan, This is Dan Evans.
I'm Miss Willey.
- How do you do.
How do you do. Won't you come in?
- Thank you.
I brought the maestro.
I'm so glad you came.
Who has been painting something?
That's aunt Willey.
She's an artist.
I just dashed off a magazine cover.
She's very clever.
One of the reasons I
like to live with her...
She can respect my work
because she can't see it.
I'd like to see some of your stuff.
You would?
- Uhuh.
Come with me.
Have you ever painted, Mr Morgan?
I once painted a thing with iodine.
I had my piano tuned.
What is it?
- A Steinway.
A baby grand?
- No. A concert.
A concert?
It belonged to my father.
It's all I have left.
He was very good when he was young.
What happened to him?
He got married.
So did Mozart.
This was different.
He is dead now.
Let's hear how you play.
How about Schumann's Carnaval?
How about it?
What did you put in this brew?
It's a secret formula.
It took me years of research.
So, you are Miss Willey.
You sound as if you were looking at the
Washington Monument for the first time.
What do you think of this?
This blind man's bluff.
I haven't thought for twenty years.
But I'll tell you this.
I wouldn't be surprised if she
played better than he did.
That's a nice scene.
Of course it says allegretto
and you play it straight.
But anyway, I recognised it.
Was it as bad as that?
I wish you would show me how.
She seems to be improving already.
You see, you should play
it with more feeling.
Not so much like a metronome.
I shouldn't play after that.
Why don't we all have dinner
together and go to the concert?
I'm giving one at the Chez Mamie.
They're playing Mussorgsky and Delius.
Delius, huh?
Yeah. Why don't you?
What do we do about tickets?
Aunt Willey can always get some.
The first violinist
proposed to me in 1917.
We could go to Petrovka's up
the street and have spaghetti.
Yeah, How can you go against that?
Delius and spaghetti.
I am afraid I can't.
Come in.
Just put your things over on the settee.
How does it look in here?
Very clean and neat.
A tribute to a nice friend.
Chick? Not a chance.
A girl comes up here afternoons and
teases the place with a dust rag.
She cheats. Look.
I'll fix the drinks. What will it be?
Could we have coffee?
If you have got to.
- I'd like some coffee too please.
I'll fix it.
No. I'll do it. No man ever made
coffee for me and no man ever will.
Where's the kitchen?
- There.
That's where I belong.
You show Cathy around.
That is me. Mary Catherine.
You see, aunt Willey
hates the name of Mary.
It's her name.
- Oh.
Maybe you'd like to try a good piano.
Of course, it's not a concert grand like
yours but it does have all the keys.
It sounds like the keys are yellow.
They are.
Kind of old and loose.
Please like aunt Willey's coffee.
It's horrible.
She pours a handful into
boiling water, cowboy style.
You worry about hurting
people's feelings.
That's real nice.
Do you want a torch?
No thanks.
Very pretty.
You play real pretty.
Real sweet.
How long have you been blind?
Since I was a child.
Yeah. Sure. That's what I figured.
Because you play like you've
had a nice sheltered kind of life.
Sit over here.
Why don't you ask me how
long I've been blind?
You wanted to ask me ever since we met.
If you want to ask something, ask it.
If you want to do something, do it.
If you live like that...
Oh, forget it.
How long have you been blind?
A year and a half.
Too long or not long enough.
I don't know yet which.
What do you see... when you play?
I mean, what pictures do
you get in your mind?
I don't know.
Sometimes... I remember.
The sun on the lattice.
The rain on the windowpane.
Or flowers.
A whole field.
That's real pretty.
Rain on a windowpane.
And you're nice and safe and
warm behind the window.
That's not what rain means to me.
It's trying to find a job in the rain.
Keeping a newspaper under your shirt.
The best way to keep you warm.
Only pretty soon the paper gets soggy.
And the water drips
down into your shoes.
Rotting them with cold rain.
It never stops. You hate it.
Did you ever in your life
ever really hate anything?
'A field of flowers', she says.
It's a kid finding out somebody
on the block just died.
Old Mrs Halloran maybe.
It's running like crazy to
Mr Kilp the undertaker.
If there was a funeral that paid well...
Kilp would turn his back and let
you take some of the flowers.
You could sell them.
Maybe make enough to see a movie.
It was a happy day when you found
there was a funeral on the block.
Not very pretty, is it.
Not very pretty.
But you do make me see what you mean.
The pictures in my mind.
I put them all together
and they make music.
Music for Sweeney.
Half down on paper.
And it will never get finished.
Why not?
Because the pictures stopped
a year and a half ago.
How did you...
How did I get blind?
I told you. If you want
to ask something, ask it.
I was going to ask you that.
Okay. I'll tell you.
I spent four years in the war.
Two years overseas.
I never got a scratch.
And then I came home and became
a nice, safe civilian again.
I was sitting in a drugstore
at the fountain.
A drunken driver crashed
into the plate glass window.
The glass flew all over the place.
Hearts and flowers.
That's when you want to know.
The thing I like about coffee.
It keeps me awake.
There's nothing more ridiculous
than lying unconscious on a bed.
Besides, I have insomnia.
I like to blame it on the coffee
instead of my conscience.
How do you take it?
- Straight.
Don't you believe her.
She's one of those awful
heart-of-gold villains.
My heart is an old wastepaper basket.
Filled with unpaid bills.
And paperback novels.
How is the coffee?
A work of art.
What is this music manuscript?
I heard you play this afternoon.
I know music when I hear it.
I know music when I see it.
Do you mind if I try it?
I'll play it.
Hello, mother.
I am home.
You shouldn't stay out so late, son.
Cigarettes and loss of
sleep is bad for your wind.
You won't be able to blow your
horn when you're a big boy.
You know, Chick.
You're not a bad musician.
You are too good for that dump.
That's what I keep telling
myself but nobody answers.
Come on in and listen to something.
You know that piece of music?
The Sweeney?
- Yep.
Light me up.
I got something new for it.
I can do it like that. Or like this.
Keep them both.
It's a thing alright.
It's different.
Yeah. Like rain.
Rain on a windowpane. As simple as that.
It's beautiful, baby.
Very, very pure.
Good to see you back in the groove
again after a year in the mothballs.
I have got news for you.
We are being evicted again?
I'm going back to the Chez Mamie.
How did it go tonight?
Delius was a little ragged.
But the spaghetti was perfect.
That girl.
What's her name?
You know her name.
What does she look like?
Not too big. Not too small.
Not too bad to look at.
Not too bad to be around.
But not red, white and blue, huh?
She's the kind, that no matter
how crowded the streetcar was...
Or how tired you were, you'd
get up and give her your seat.
Is that clear enough?
It will have to do.
Too bad she's blind.
Yeah. Ain't it.
Am I late?
- You're a woman.
Let's sit in a booth, shall we?
- This way please.
A lemonade please.
A glass of beer and a saucer of milk.
I beg your pardon, sir?
A glass of beer and a saucer of milk.
Thank you, sir.
I bought the guy a cat.
It's his birthday.
For Dan?
Yes. He likes cats.
He thinks they can sing.
He's singing now.
Here. Hurry. Quick.
I want to talk to you about Dan.
- How is he?
I guess you performed a miracle.
He's back at the Mamie.
And I think he's writing out that music.
- That's wonderful.
You know, a good thing
about this cat is...
It gives him something to
roust about instead of me.
Or me.
You ain't seen nothing.
Maybe it's because he pities me, huh?
Wasn't that the idea?
I suppose so.
Only now I...
I feel funny.
Think nothing of it because it's
just as dangerous to go back now...
As it is to go ahead.
That's what I wanted to talk
to you about. Going ahead.
About Dan's eyes.
What did the doctor say?
Is there anything that can be done?
Sure. Trick operations.
They work sometimes. Sometimes not.
But the only guy he'll let touch him
is that big-shot surgeon in New York.
You know that stuff they keep in banks?
Why can't I...
Because he's a very independent guy.
I'm sorry, baby. You were rather late.
I've got a rehearsal.
- I'll drop you, shall I?
Thank you.
Why couldn't I give you the
money and you give it to him?
The same thing.
I know what.
He could win a prize in
a musical competition.
A big cash prize.
Very good.
If there was a big cash prize.
And if you could get him to write
the music and his music won it.
You forget.
I'm Catherine Mallory. I give it.
I become a foundation. I give an award.
Well, I've got it.
We all get even.
It's right here in the paper.
You should quit reading newspapers.
They just make you unhappy.
I'm skipping the build-up but a dame
named Mallory is giving a big prize.
Now, let's see.
Fine. Who is Mallory?
Somebody with a gazillion dollars.
Do you want to hear it or not?
I do. Go ahead.
Alright. So Mallory is a dame.
So, if they can give five grand for a
golf tournament or a puzzle contest.
Or for the cutest man at Yale.
This dame is going to do the same thing
for the best bit of music lying around.
And why not?
- Well, here it is.
'Submitted compositions may be in any
musical form for piano or orchestra'.
'Compositions must be submitted
within three months of the above date'.
'First prize will be...'
'Five thousand dollars'.
Five thousand dollars.
Yes. Can you pick that up at
Telegraph Hill on a rainy night?
That's wonderful.
Now you can go to work
and get us all fat.
I'll just whip up a boogie-woogie
of Old Black Joe.
My mistake.
Is there anything in the icebox?
I think so.
You could win it, Dan.
The piece you played for me.
All you have to do is to finish it.
- Just like that, huh?
I know my opinion doesn't count so much.
But Chick knows a lot about it.
And he thinks it's great.
- He's slightly prejudiced.
If I could have finished it
I would have finished it.
My luck has gone.
Gone out the window.
The plate glass window of
a drugstore. Remember?
When your luck is gone, it's gone.
That's that.
All I wanted to say was that your
music has meant so much to me.
And I thought perhaps...
Are you ready?
- Let's go.
- Yeah?
Not bad, is it?
How many times do I have to say it?
That second theme needs development.
It ought to be scored
for a full orchestra.
That's right.
If I have to tear this piano
apart I'm going to do it.
Now you're talking, baby. Tear it apart.
What you waiting for?
Get some manuscript paper.
I just left.
Well, the man just went to work.
He had more trouble making
up his mind that I do a bed.
But he did it.
Eighty-eight to the bar too.
So, we're stuck.
Go and sleep on it.
What a rotten occupation.
A blind man grabbing
music out of the air.
I should have gotten
a pencil concession.
You may yet.
Why don't you get out of here
and live a normal life?
I'm too happy with you.
I'd miss your friendly smile.
You and that girl.
You pushed me into this.
It's nothing you can't
push yourself out of.
Get this.
You got it.
Is the left hand dominant all the way?
No. It doubles back like this.
- Go ahead.
Now. Horns and strings in unison.
The strings start moving
after the first quarter, right?
Piano again starting with B Flat and...
The left hand is the same.
Only this time separate chords.
That's the finale... in F Minor.
Twelve for orchestra.
What happens now?
First the committee of critics.
And if they agree with
Catherine Mallory...
It wins the first prize.
And if they don't?
Then it will lose.
You are a strange girl.
Even if he does lose, it so happens that
Arthur Rubinstein is on the committee.
He is also a very good
friend of Miss Mallory's.
If he likes it.
Maybe she can get him to play it.
I don't want to sound corrupt but if
Miss Mallory knows Mr Rubinstein...
Then perhaps you can do
some business with him.
Not a chance in the world.
It seems we might have arranged this
whole thing a little more on the...
Frame-up side.
Aunt Willey, I'm ashamed of you.
No. This doesn't need it.
It is first rate.
And you had better get ready.
Where am I going?
Where the man said.
My father always said a fishing rod
always had a hook at one end...
And an idiot at the other.
That's only when your
old man went fishing.
Don't splash the oars so much.
What will we catch?
Rainbow. Cutthroat.
I've never caught a fish in my life.
Maybe the fish are asleep.
You never thought of that.
The fish sleep.
Sure they sleep.
How do you know?
I've seen them.
I've got a bite. I've got a bite.
Snub him. Snub him.
What's the poor little fish ever done
to her that she should snub him?
She must get the fish on the hook.
'Jerked in' if you're
so fussy about words.
Reel in. Easy.
Take your time.
- Take the pole.
Take the pole.
- I can't. I have one myself.
Just reel it in easy and watch you
don't get any slack in your line.
Now keep it taught.
Hey, look at him break water.
I never knew a fish could dance.
He's doing a first-class hula.
Keep reeling in.
Bring him over towards the boat.
It looks like a rainbow.
That's it. Bring him in.
A good think you don't have twin hooks
on your line or I'd need two more hands.
What did we get, Chick?
- Well, we got a...
Let me feel mine.
Here, Dan.
This is a beauty.
I think I caught a guppy.
I'd better put him back.
The poor little thing has no strength
or I'd never have landed him.
At sixty cents a pound
we're doing alright.
Well, how is the aroma?
- Wonderful.
The French say a fish
must swim three times.
In water, sauce and wine.
Here's to Mary's sauce.
- And to yours, sir.
I think I'll fix some hamburgers.
You don't like fish?
- She loves fish.
Not this particular fish.
I can't eat it.
What's the matter with this fish?
It's good fish.
I caught it.
- And I cooked it.
But I met this fish this afternoon.
I saw him swimming.
He was alive and happy.
I was an accessory before
the fact of his death.
She is kidding, of course.
This morning he had his life before him.
Now he's lying on my plate
coated with cracker crumbs.
Sorry, but I cannot eat him.
How can you eat that potato?
It was torn out of the ground, peeled
and boiled before your very eyes.
What about a hamburger?
Yes. You eat beef, don't you?
They slaughter beef.
I don't witness the execution.
I don't spend the
afternoon with the cow.
Let's see. 4, 5, 6.
Don't tell me. I am your opponent.
Remember now. Three or more
cards in sequence in the same suit.
Or three or more of a
kind make a spread.
When your whole hand is that way
you discard and say gin rummy.
I discard?
- You do.
Gin rummy.
40 - 50 - 60.
67 and 20. Gin 87.
Deal, deal, deal.
And I'll be in Scotland afore ye.
Where memories remain.
On the bonny, bonny
banks of Loch Lomond.
The song?
No. About the fish.
What about the fish?
You saw to it that I got the big one.
Chick told me.
I've been fishing before.
I can tell an anchovy from a whale.
I suppose it was silly of me.
Now I owe you for two things.
I owe you for a fish.
And I owe you for something else.
I know about the fish, but...
A long time ago I had
the band up in Buffalo.
I was playing a one-night date.
The manager had a sign up over his desk.
It said.
'I don't want to be a millionaire'.
'I just want to live like one'.
But with me it's...
It has always been kinda the opposite.
I didn't want to live like a composer.
I wanted to be one.
I wanted to be one bad.
Now I have written a piece of music.
It's on its way.
And I'm what I wanted to be.
You would have been that anyway.
Without me.
No. You added it all up.
I don't know what's going
to happen about the contest.
Who will win it.
But that's not important.
The point is, I've written something.
And win or lose... I'm a composer.
Yes, Dan.
That's why I'm saying thanks.
Thanks for the fish.
Thanks for...
Your music is going to win
that prize. I know it.
You are going to get your
sight back and be famous.
I can feel it.
I will be anything you predict.
You have beautiful hands.
How do you stand?
I think about fifty years ago
she was a 21 dealer in Reno.
What on earth are you trying to do?
I thought I ought to have a whirl at it.
After all, I'm supposed to be an artist.
What's it supposed to represent?
You wouldn't dare say
that in front of a Picasso.
As a matter of fact, I started to
paint Dan sitting at the piano.
But it turned out to be
the piano sitting on Dan.
No talent at all. No flair.
Have you heard from Chick or anybody?
There's a telegram over there.
A telegram?
On the piano.
I wonder if we ought to
have a Christmas tree.
I'm beginning to feel at home here.
I'm really a bohemian at heart.
Why don't you open it?
- I am afraid to.
What if they reject it?
Fine. Then we get
another bunch of critics.
I'll open it.
I've been rejected before.
I'll get the car and come back for you.
Dan. I've got something for you.
It's a telegram. Chick read it to me.
We've got the news, huh?
I memorized it.
Go ahead. I'm ready.
It said:
'Delighted to inform you your
concerto awarded Mallory prize'.
'Proud to give it first performance
this spring at Carnegie Hall'.
'Arthur Rubinstein'.
You won.
Now you can go to your
doctor in New York.
You will see again.
You did this.
If it hadn't been for you it
never would have happened.
You are going.
It wouldn't be any use.
They can't do anything about my eyes.
If you did it for me.
You said you did.
That's what I said.
Then go on.
I'll be back.
What's this?
It's Christmas music I suppose.
Holy smoke, I won it.
I won it.
Here's your daily vitamin.
- Thank you.
I had a wicked old aunt
who used to quote:
'A man's love is of his
life a thing apart'.
'It is a woman's whole existence'.
Cut me in.
'As usual Chick is
here pushing the pen'.
'I want to say again even
in his cynical presence...'
Never mind that.
'The big news is that the main
event goes on tomorrow'.
That means they operated yesterday.
Why hasn't Chick called me?
No news is good news.
I suppose so.
'My doctor assures me that
success is an absolute cinch'.
'You would go for him. He's a young
fat man with a happy face. Chick says'.
'And he has fingers like a cardsharp
so things look pretty optimistic'.
'Of course it will be several weeks
before the bandages are removed'.
'And then I can put away my
cane until I break an ankle'.
'So, cross your fingers for me'.
Weeks. We've got to wait weeks.
So does he.
[ Telephone ]
Oh fine.
California coming through.
Thank you, lady.
Give me a torch, will you.
How are you?
He's getting good food, a nice
bed and he has a pretty nurse.
What's the matter with that?
Well, they took the bandages
off yesterday for a while.
He'll be alright.
Just as soon as the croaker
says he can travel.
And don't worry. We'll be there.
Yes. I sure will.
What did she say?
She sent you her love.
He's alright. They'll be back
as soon as he can travel.
He's going to be alright.
- Good.
Oh, this is the happiest day of my life.
What can I do to show my gratitude?
Give something to your favorite charity.
- Which one?
That's an idea. What have you
always wanted and never had?
Let's grab a cab.
Let's walk awhile.
- Okay.
Look at that.
Look at that.
Now I know what they mean by...
You'll have to grow some wolf's stuff.
But on that part, take it easy.
Light me a torch, will you.
Boy, I need a shave.
Hey. Light it yourself.
I'd better get used to that.
What do you think of yourself?
I didn't know I was so ugly or
that you were so handsome.
I was afraid of that.
Boy, you've no idea how much better a
cigarette tastes when you see the smoke.
Come on. Let's see something.
Two weeks of this.
Tougher than a six-day bike race.
But after a while I'll be like I was.
Looking without seeing, like you.
I see enough.
One thing I don't see though.
What's that?
Why all this stalling?
Every letter she sends you, she wants
to know when you're coming back.
I need some time.
The longer you stall
the tougher it will be.
[ Telephone ]
It is Mary. It's her.
I'm out.
What do I tell her?
Hello Mary.
Yeah, I am fine. And you?
Ah, swell.
No. We haven't been able
to get reservations yet.
On the level. It is tough.
No. He isn't here right now.
He'll be very sorry he missed your call.
And I'll wire you just as soon as
we're able to get reservations.
So long, Mary.
I'm a heel.
I know it.
Just so you know it.
I've a feeling something is wrong.
So why should Chick say he's alright?
I don't know.
I think perhaps they're
trying to spare me the shock.
I think perhaps...
- You think too much.
That's the trouble with you.
You're lonely and you're bored.
No, no. Something is the matter.
Aunt Willy. What do you
think I ought to do?
Just what you want to do.
I wish you wouldn't be so smug
and full of worldly wisdom.
You are in love.
I'm trying to humour you.
It's a form of insanity.
And I happen to think he is still blind.
Because you haven't talked to him?
Has it occurred to you he hasn't talked
to you because he isn't blind anymore?
Now that you have that bee
added to your bonnet-full.
Do you want me to do it?
Do what?
- Telephone the airport.
Reservations for New York.
Isn't that what you
have been thinking of?
I think he needs me.
- Pack something.
Where are the house phones please?
Right over there, Miss.
- Thank you.
Mr Chick Morgan please.
Hello friend. How is the
weather out there today?
In the lobby, huh?
What lobby?
Okay. You stay there.
I'll be right down.
So many in the crowd, in the crowd.
Then I shot it...
A small world.
- It began to get too big for me.
It never gets bigger than a man's head.
Come on. Let's get out of this traffic.
You certainly surprised me.
How do you like the big city?
And how is my old friend, Willey?
Yes. I get around sometimes
and Willey as well.
You're not writing me a letter now.
You can tell me the truth.
Right. Let's get it where it belongs.
You should have told me the
operation was a failure.
A failure?
Oh no, baby. It worked.
He can see. He can see as well as I can.
All he does is go around seeing.
Oh, Chick.
He could see people on Mars.
- Thanks.
And you didn't believe me?
- I didn't know what to believe.
I got kinda frantic when
he didn't come back.
That's what I was stalling about.
Why didn't he come back?
How is the cat?
The cat is fine.
Why didn't he?
See, the guy was blind.
He was in a big, black
grave as big as this world.
Then he suddenly came to life
and things fell in place again.
Like trees and streets and
beautiful dames and...
I'm a clarinet player.
I can't explain it very good.
But anyway, it's a big thing.
And you can't expect a guy to...
Go back to a blind girl?
Give him time.
Hello Evans. How are you?
I'm fine.
There he is. The same guy.
- No.
I heard that new piece of yours the
other night. It sounded wonderful.
Thank you very much.
I'm glad you like it.
Be seeing you.
Dan, this is...
I've been so anxious to meet you.
I am Catherine Mallory.
How do you do.
Catherine Mallory. The Mallory award.
Your benefactor.
Be very nice to her.
She took us off the streets. Remember?
We are all so happy you won the award.
Thank you.
I thought people who gave
art prizes were either...
Conscience-stricken millionaires or
old spinsters who cheated Wall Street.
Have you told her she's having
dinner with us tonight?
This is all new stuff he has written.
They guy writes all the time.
He writes in his sleep.
And mine.
Will you tell him who you are tonight?
- Shall I?
Do you want to play a game?
Wonderful. Wonderful.
- Thank you.
It's a little rough.
But better than playing in that joint
in San Francisco for 75 fish a week.
Yes. Now you play for millionaires...
And get a Martini and a cracker
with some anchovy paste.
He's homesick for the slums.
Aren't you?
- Not me.
I'm a bright-lights-boy from here on in.
I lived with a sack over
my head for a long time.
A sack?
Yeah. Blind.
Oh yes. I know. Chick told me.
I think it's a marvelous story.
It's like a bad novel
you can't put down.
You are like a character
from a Greek fable.
So are you.
Oh, I can't stand this.
Do you mind if I blow?
I'll catch the last show of a movie.
That guy knows everything.
He knows that all evening
I've been thinking about you.
And looking at you.
Wanting to talk to you.
Get along with you.
How could he guess all those things?
I don't know. The same way you have.
I've tried to disguise it a little so...
I suppose it isn't quite as obvious
as the Empire State Building.
There must be a way to get out of here.
How about the door?
You're a pretty impulsive young man.
I am happy.
I liked your Park Avenue cakewalk.
Thank you.
It could be better. Much better.
Somehow. Maybe I don't get the
pictures clear like I used to...
When I was blind back in San Francisco.
Maybe there are more distractions here.
Tell me about you and San Francisco.
I worked in a joint called
Chez Mamie with Chick.
And lived with a cat called Sam Hall.
Chick gave me this cat.
Talk about somebody else.
- No, no. Go on.
That's the old trick.
The woman lets the guy unwind.
- No.
No tricks. I'm curious.
What about?
About the part where a girl comes in.
One does, doesn't she?
Yes. One did.
This is where the man in the bad
book you mentioned always...
Says something very effective.
Well... say something.
All I can think of is: ain't it pretty.
You were telling me about
that girl in San Francisco.
No, I wasn't. You were telling me.
You don't want to tell?
- I'll tell.
What was she like?
She was blind.
Like me.
And she isn't the girl in your life?
She is in... part of it.
The part you want to...
No-one forgets anything.
Are you going back to her?
I think you came from
a long line of lawyers.
I suppose I'm interested.
We were two blind people
in a city full of eyes.
I wasn't anything until she came along.
I wouldn't even know
what she looked like.
I might know her hand or her voice.
Her voice was like yours.
A little lower but... like yours.
Like mine?
Like yours is now.
Out here.
So that's how it is.
I remind you of someone.
Not of anybody in the world.
You're not going back?
From you?
I don't like looking down on
people from a high place.
They look too insignificant.
Well, let's go down and be significant.
I thought this would be a nice
place for some conversation.
And the older I get the more
at home I feel with squirrels.
Alright. What's the matter?
Last night he checked in about 3 am.
He sits down to write a
song about being in love.
He is walking on air because he
has met a dame named Mallory.
I thought you were going to tip him off.
I was afraid of how he'd take it.
How long do you think
you can keep it up?
I don't know.
Until he goes back to Mary Willey.
If he ever goes back.
But that was a gag.
Mary Willey was a gag.
She was at first.
But now she's very real to me.
She's the girl he said
he'd never forget.
You once wrote me a letter from
him when you first came here.
In it he said...
He had never really been
lonesome in his life before.
That he'd been lonely
but never lonesome.
And that there was a big difference.
And that he had to remember
very hard sometimes...
Just to be sure it wasn't
another blind man's dream.
That I... Mary...
Really did exist and
was waiting for him.
So I want him to go back.
I want him to be great
and famous and happy.
I want him to be a lot
of wonderful things.
And still I want him to
remain the man he used to be.
Can you understand that?
The last time I tried to
understand a woman...
Oh, skip it.
That's better.
I thought you were sleeping.
No. Just practising.
How did it sound to you?
But not as good as you
think I can do, huh?
But good.
I know. It just doesn't add up.
You shouldn't work it so hard. It may
be you've worked the life out of it.
Miss Mallory please.
Yeah. I wore out another
set of keys this afternoon.
They tell me there's a little
restaurant over in Staten Island.
Where the food is unbelievably bad.
Shall we see for ourselves?
Okay. I'll give you a minute and a half.
Wake me up when you get in.
Otherwise I'll never get to bed.
How does it feel to be rich?
I don't know. I've never been poor.
I bet the poor and the mice
have walked out of the place.
They may not anymore.
Where have you lived?
Here, France, Italy.
I was in Italy.
- I studied the piano there.
I was at Salerno.
We didn't have a piano.
You know, I keep
thinking I've known you.
That I've met you.
Could be a travelling
salesman from Chicago.
Chick remembered me from
a hospital during the war.
No. It's not like that.
It's like when you feel a thing happened
exactly the same way it was before.
And you're sure it has.
I hate to explode a theory.
All theories are exploded.
Why so serious?
I'm not serious. I was just thinking.
A fine thing to do.
Go out with a girl and think.
It was about you.
Then it's alright.
I was just wondering why a dozen
guys aren't after a girl like you.
I'm hard to find.
Yes. I know.
It took me thirty years.
I'll have to go on a diet
to stay with this laundry.
What's wrong?
And the world was such a pretty place.
Filled with love songs
and a gal named Mallory.
Did she brush you off, baby?
Have a little beef?
Is it any of my business?
- No.
I think you're in love with that
little gal out in San Francisco.
Now, this Mallory is a gorgeous dame
and she moves in gorgeous circles.
But it's still a circle.
So I think maybe you've got
yourself mixed up a little bit.
Let me know how I come out, will you?
So, swinging up I go.
With the crowd down
here below shouting...
'Chick, I told you so'.
I like you even when you
are sour and gloomy.
What's the matter?
Did you bet on a slow horse or is it
a piece of music you can't finish?
No, it's not music.
Seventh Avenue. This is us.
Daniel Evans and company.
- Pretty high-class company.
Arthur Rubinstein, Eugene Ormandy
and the New York Philharmonic.
Are you scared?
- Scared to death.
I'm kinda scared myself.
- For you.
We'd better get out of here.
What if it's a bust?
- It can't be.
Wagner was a bust in Paris one night.
No. Paris was a bust one night.
Anyway, one thing.
- What's that?
It can't be a bust with me.
Let's go.
Those are rehearsal licks.
Someday I'll do a piece about that.
The Carnegie tune-up. How is that?
A big thing.
Well, pal. You're on the eve of fame.
I was on the eve of Christmas
once and nothing happened.
Not last Christmas.
Now you're a big man with charisma
and head-waiters give you the nod.
How do you feel? Are you happy?
Why shouldn't I be?
I made the grade, didn't I?
It's more than a hop, skip and jump
from the Chez Mamie to Carnegie Hall.
Try it sometime.
- I just asked how you felt.
I think I'll write a...
Did you write to Mary and
tell her the broadcast time?
That's sweet of you. How is she
these days? What did she say?
Not mulch.
- What did you say?
Do you say that Mallory,
the millionaire glamour girl...
Is taking you where the
Woodbine Twineth?
Have you really no more seats?
- Sorry. Not a thing.
Well, this is it.
I thought it was tough at Salerno.
- Why don't you sit with me?
I won't be able to sit.
I must be ready to run.
Don't be silly. If it's no good
Rubinstein won't play it.
If he's wrong, anything he
plays will sound good.
Maybe. Maybe.
If you run, where do you go?
That joint in the village. Remember?
- Yes.
Shall we synchronise watches?
Good luck.
[ Radio. Dan's music. ]
"You have just heard the New York
Philharmonic Symphonic Orchestra..."
"Under the direction of Eugene Ormandy."
"In Beethoven's Fifth Symphony."
"After a brief intermission..."
"Arthur Rubinstein will join
the orchestra as a soloist."
"For The first performance of
the piano concerto in C Minor..."
"By the young composer Daniel Evans."
That Beethoven was pretty good.
- Was it?
Yeah. Think he'll make the grade?
You are next.
Hold my hand.
But you know how eccentric he was.
He stopped right in the middle of the
concerto, turned to the audience...
And said: 'Do you like that?
I will play it for you again'.
Are you nervous?
Me? No. I'm not nervous. Not a bit.
Well, I'm glad to hear that.
Because if you were, there's
not a thing to be done about it.
I like your music.
I like to play it.
Thank you sir.
- Ready.
I'm nervous too.
Your rabbit's foot in pink.
- Thank you.
Let me shake that hand.
Take a message to Cathy for me, can you?
- She's waiting.
Will you take it?
- Yes.
Say I've gone.
- Gone?
To San Francisco to
contact that blind girl.
You know how.
You did it for me often enough.
Wait a minute.
- Tell her, will you.
Wasn't it thrilling, Chick?
Where's Dan?
I've got news for you.
We are leaving for San Francisco.
Back to Mary.
I'm supposed to tell you why.
You see. I've the gift of the gab and
I'm supposed to break it to you easy.
Well, isn't that what you wanted?
Tears of joy, huh?
It says here that you
show great promise.
Very sweet of him, isn't it?
This guy calls it 'promise'.
We might send him a little note.
A sort-of promissory note, huh?
[ Piano music ]