The Death of Richie (1977) Movie Script

(Nulticom Jingle)
- [Priest] Will you all join
me in the Lord's prayer?
- [Congregation] Our
Father, who art in heaven.
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done on
earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread
and forgive us our trespasses
as we forgive those who
trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom and the power--
(piano music)
- Oh, death, where is thy sting?
Oh, grave, where is thy victory?
The sting of death is sin,
and the strength of sin is in the Lord.
But thanks be to God,
which gives us the victory
through our Lord, Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my beloved brethren,
be steadfast, unmovable.
(drowned out by music)
Man that is born of woman
have but a short time to live.
He is full of misery and he cometh up,
and is cut down like a flower.
He flee as if it were a shadow.
And never continue within one stage.
In the midst of life, we are in death.
(drowned out by music)
Deliver us not into the
pains of eternal death.
(teenagers chatter and laugh)
(engine revs)
- [Teenager] Hey, Bricker.
When the tower clears,
y'all ready to crash?
- Come on, man.
- Hang in there, it's early.
- It's after midnight, man.
- That's early.
If I go home now, my old man
will still be up. (laughs)
(horn honks)
Can you see all right?
All right.
- Hey, Rich.
How come we always go
along with your ideas, man?
- I'll tell you why,
because I am a born leader.
A sixth grade teacher once told me that.
I'm also the slickest looking
dude in this freaked out bunch
and I got the best ideas.
- Actually, the real
reason is we can't resist
your overwhelming humility.
(group laughs)
- [Friend] Are you kidding, man?
This guy was bragging before we started.
- Hey!
(tires screech)
(siren wails)
- The cops, the cops!
- Put it out, man.
- Open the windows.
- Come on, come on, just--
- Where's the hash?
I got the hash.
- Are you all right, man?
Huh, you all right, you all right?
We can handle this.
- Hello, Brick.
- Hello.
- The street doesn't seem
wide enough for you tonight.
- Something's wrong with
the steering mechanism.
- Yeah?
- Yeah.
It keeps slipping.
- Hello, officer.
- I think you better get that
steering mechanism fixed.
- I'll do that.
- I'm gonna let you off this
time, Brick, as a favor.
And when I do a favor for someone,
I expect him to do a favor for me.
You understand?
- Sure.
I understand.
There's no problem in the world
that can't be solved
with a bit of good grass.
- You mean the man in blue smokes?
- Yeah, he smokes.
But he don't inhale.
(group laughs)
(tires screech)
(group laughs)
(object clacks)
- George.
- Don't worry.
I won't start anything.
Come on, I know you're awake.
Now look...
There's this thing
between us I don't want.
How about working together,
getting rid of it?
I thought that this weekend,
maybe you and Russell and me,
we'd go up to the mountains.
Should be nice at this time of year.
You know something?
This is the time of your
life I always looked...
I always looked forward to.
You'll be taking your college boards soon.
When I was a kid, I never
even thought of college.
And my father, he couldn't
pay the bills, even if I did.
And then there was the war.
Yeah, I volunteered
for the Merchant Marine
when I was about your age.
And then when the war ended,
it was too late to think of college.
But all that's different for you.
I mean, if you want to go and
you get the grades to get in,
well, uh...
I'll help you.
Of course, you have to get a job,
but that wouldn't hurt, would it?
When I was younger, I thought
it was only a matter of time
till I got to the top.
And then little by little, I
realized that my life was work.
Pay the bills.
That's about it.
You know...
I'd like to be a,
forest ranger way up in the mountain.
But I'm not.
I'm just a spice salesman,
you know, and uh...
(sobs and chuckles)
I have been for 17 years,
probably always will be.
Maybe I never had it in
me to be anything else.
But you do.
You can be anything you want to be.
If you don't let drugs
and those friends of yours destroy it.
- What's wrong with my friends?
- Oh, you know how I
feel about that Brick.
- You don't even know that Brick.
- I know him, I know him.
I know he's two years older than you.
I know he's a drop out.
I know he's been arrested
for marijuana, I know him.
And those other friends,
that Peanuts, that Mark.
- Look, Jack, you're not
picking my friends for me!
- Some friends can be helpful,
yours will drag you down.
- Yeah, well I don't tell
you who to run around with,
so you don't tell me, all right?
- As long as you live in my house,
I'll tell you what I want to
tell you, and you'll listen.
- Yeah, well if I can't
make you shut your mouth,
you can't make me listen!
- Oh, Richie, why must you
make everything an argument?
- I got nothing to say to you.
And you definitely got nothing
to say that I want to hear.
So why don't you just get
the hell outta here, huh?
Why don't you just get
your butt outta here?
Man, you always preach about privacy,
and you come busting in here
in the middle of the night.
Just get outta here, will ya?
(melancholic music)
- [George] It's no use.
- You can't just give up on him, you know.
He needs your help.
- He doesn't want anything from me.
He hates me.
- George, that's not true, you know it.
He's just so mixed up.
I don't think he knows what he's doing.
- Yeah, well, how long we've
been yelling at each other?
Almost two years now.
I'm not gonna put up with it.
I've gotta do something,
for everybody's sake.
- What?
- Well, I'm gonna go to court.
I'll file a wayward conduct
petition against him.
- What is that?
- Well, all it means is that
the juvenile authorities
will keep an eye on him and
if he goes off the deep end,
he'll have to answer to them.
- I think that's terrible.
That's just like washing our
hands of him, it's like--
- It's just getting a little
more support, that's all.
- Please don't do that.
- Well, I made up my mind!
(moody rock music)
- [Man] You're having some
problems with your son?
- Yeah, my older boy, Richie.
He's on drugs, marijuana,
LSD, I don't know what else.
- Well, how do you know it's drugs?
- 'Cause I can't handle him
anymore, he's out of control.
- Yeah, well, that can
happen at 16, you know.
Even without drugs.
- Not with my boy.
- You want some of this?
It's not good, but it's hot.
- No, thanks.
- You know, Mr. Werner, I get
a lot of kids through here.
And so many of them seem to feel useless.
They don't see any value
to what they're doing.
That makes them defiant.
- Yeah, but why should he defy me?
All I ever did was try to
give him what he wanted.
- Have you talked this
through with Richie?
- Yeah, yeah, I try,
he won't listen to me.
And when I do, he starts yelling, and...
- Yeah, well, filing a
wayward conduct petition
is very unusual.
- I want him to stop!
Realize what he's doing.
- Okay.
Let's go back and fill out the request.
Oh, you do understand, don't you,
that there'll have to be
a full hearing in court?
- [George] Yes, I do.
- Yeah, well, while you're
waiting for the court hearing,
you and your boy ought to go
to the county drug council.
Get some help.
- Drug council?
- There are a lot of other
people, just like yourself,
who are looking for an
answer, some answer.
Get together with them,
get some professional help.
You may find that things
get just a lot better.
- I don't believe in
this group therapy thing.
- Yeah.
- What do you guys know about
a wayward conduct petition?
- What's that?
- My dear old dad just
filed one against me.
- It's like you're on probation, right?
- No, no, no.
He says that the juvenile authorities
are keeping an eye on me.
- What it means is he's fingered you, man.
It's like he said to the
law, "this is a rotten kid,
"find some excuse to bust him."
- Get this.
We gotta go to court together
in a couple of weeks.
- I'm tellin' you, Richie.
He's buying you a one-way
ticket to the juvenile shelter.
- Nobody's locking me up.
You know, like, once
they get your name on one
of those sheets, they can do anything they
want to you, anything at all.
Hey, remember I used to have
hair down to my shoulders?
"Cut it," they said.
"Get yourself a baldie."
I'm not getting no stupid baldie.
So I fought them.
Oh, yeah, boy, did I fight 'em.
And where did I end up?
Ended up in a stupid juvenile shelter.
- Well, that's the difference
between me and you, man.
Because I would've run away.
- They'd hunt you, man.
- Yeah, they'd find you.
Everybody's hooked into a computer today.
They'll find you no matter where you go.
- What do you guys know
about the drug abuse council?
- It's a waste of time.
- Waste of time?
What do you mean waste of time?
Every pot-head in the city goes there.
It's an easy place to make a score.
It's like a freakin' drug bazaar.
Pot smokers' paradise.
- [Brick] Ah, shut up, Peanuts.
You don't know what the
hell you're talking about.
- [Peanuts] I know what I'm talking about.
A guy made a buy right there.
Right there in one of
the big meeting rooms.
(gun fires rapidly)
- You're so good it's
discouraging, you know that?
Look at this.
- You are a tough act to follow, George.
- I've been at it a couple of years.
- Practice makes perfect.
- Not a popular idea these days.
- Today everybody's
looking for what's easy.
- And instant.
The age of instant everything.
Instant muscles, instant
beauty, instant success.
- Instant sex.
(men chuckles)
- Well, there's a lot more to it than just
squeezing the trigger,
you gotta concentrate.
You got your mind all cluttered,
you'll never get anywhere down here.
- Hey, it's taken me a
lot of years to accumulate
the clutter I got in my head.
- Well, there's a good
way to get rid of it.
You fire a round, and you see
exactly what the problem is.
High, low, wide.
Then you try again and it gets
better and better and better.
Good feeling.
- Not like most of my problems.
The more I try to figure
out what I'm doing wrong,
the deeper in I get.
- You guys signed up for
the Canadian hunting trip?
- Not me.
- How come?
With your eye, you'd bring back more game
than all the rest of us put together.
- George doesn't approve of
the club's hunting trips.
You know, killing living things?
- That's right.
See you guys later.
Hey, George, we're gonna
have a beer, come on.
- [Friend] Yeah, come along.
- Ah no, I better be going on home.
- [Friend] Okay.
- [Carol] Come on, Russell,
finish your milk, okay?
- [Russell] I really
can't, Mom, do I have to?
- He's right, he shouldn't
stuff himself before a game.
- May I go get ready?
- I guess so.
- Nothing's more important in
this house than Little League.
I've been, uh, I've been thinking.
About that thing you filed
with the juvenile court?
- Yeah, well...
I know you're probably not
gonna believe this, but,
I went to court because
I wanted to help you.
- I know.
- Hey, I read in the paper they're opening
a new Regal Burger in Oakwood,
and they're still hiring.
Maybe if you had a job...
- What do I know about
working in a restaurant?
- Well, you could learn, couldn't you?
- Way out in Oakwood?
- [George] Sure, I'd drive you there.
- Oh, come on.
They probably got, I don't
know, 10 people for every job.
- Come on, Richie.
Come on, how about it?
Try it, please.
- Okay.
- Great, we'll go there tomorrow, huh?
Good boy.
Hey, Russell, get a move on!
- George?
- Yeah?
- What about the other thing?
- What other thing?
- The drug council.
- Yeah, well...
I thought maybe we oughta check that out.
- I said I'd try to get a job!
Now don't dump it all on me, all right?
But look, if we can get some help, free--
- Oh, well, Richie's right.
Besides, there's no better
medicine than a steady job, huh?
- Hey, come on, Dad, we're gonna be late.
- Okay.
- Bye.
- Good luck, Russell.
- Thanks, Rich.
- Good luck.
- I don't think I can do it, Dad.
What if he doesn't like me?
- Well, look at it this way.
They'll be lucky to get a guy like you.
I mean, Richie, you gotta
have more faith in yourself.
You want me to go with you?
- No.
(gentle acoustic music)
Dad, I got it!
- Good boy.
I knew you could do it.
- You know, the guy
really seemed to like me.
- Big surprise, big surprise!
- Where's your son?
- Well, your honor, I want
to withdraw the charges
I filed against Richie.
He has a job now.
- Yeah, it's a place
called the Regal Burger.
- Yeah, and things have
been a lot better at home.
- A lot better?
- [Carol] Oh yes, I think it's
just made all the difference.
- You filed this petition
less than a month ago.
How long has he had this job?
- A couple of weeks.
- It was just after school
let out for the summer,
and he really seems to enjoy his work.
- So you're telling this
court that your boy's
made a miraculous recovery?
- Yes, your honor, if he
had acted like this before,
I never would've brought the charges.
- 15 years of dealing with
juvenile drug problems
inclines me to be skeptical, Mr. Werner,
about miraculous recoveries.
However, I will accept your
petition for withdrawal.
It's always better if these problems
can be worked out at home.
- Thank you, your honor.
- Thank you.
- [Judge] Oh, I do think you
and your boy should continue
your work with the drug council.
- Oh, we never started that.
- Why not?
- Well, I thought with
Richie's job and all that--
- Don't put it off, Mr. Werner.
Miracles need all the
help we can give them.
Case number 178432.
- Richie, I'm swamped,
could you get the corner?
- Sure, sure.
Couple of straws.
Oh, here, let me take that.
You don't need to build muscles, I do.
Excuse me.
Coffee changer.
Here you go, sir.
What is your capacity, about 20 gallons?
You know, there's no fee for
all the coffee you can drink,
but there's a five dollar restroom charge.
What can I do for the intrepid trio?
- Looking good, Richie.
- We don't want nothing, Richie.
- As a matter of fact, Richie,
we got something for you.
- Yeah, man, hey, listen.
We just connected for two dozen downers.
- Yeah?
- Let's get outta here and get wasted.
- Come on, Richie.
- Let's go for it.
- I can't, man.
My mom's picking me up.
- Come on, Richie.
- Call her, call her.
Tell her.
- I'll catch you guys later.
- Hey, man, where is the
fast, courteous service?
It's really a nice booth, Rich,
but I don't want to spend
the whole summer here.
- See you, Richie.
- [Richie] We advertise
the finest in aged beef.
- I would like just a plain hamburger.
- Ladies first.
- Excuse me.
I telephoned this morning,
and they said I could
sit in on one of your meetings.
For the parents whose
children are on drugs.
- Oh, let's see, why don't you
try the group in number 106?
It's just right down the hall.
- Thank you.
- [Woman] Carol?
- Oh, hello, Betty, how are you?
- Uh, you know Domenic.
- Hi, Mrs. Werner, how are you?
- Hello, Domenic.
I didn't think there would be many people.
- Mrs. Werner, if they
busted every kid in this town
who smoked pot, they'd hold their meetings
in a football stadium.
I'll see you later, all right?
- Domenic?
- Mom, it's all right.
It's okay.
- Well, I guess you're
wondering why I'm here.
- What right do I have to wonder?
Dom was arrested two weeks ago.
Possession of marijuana and LSD.
It was his first time, so he wasn't held,
but we agreed to come here.
- Is it helping?
- Helping?
At least we know that
we're not the only family
with this kind of problem.
- Well, nothing like that
has happened to us yet.
I just thought if I knew
more, understood more.
- Where'd they send you?
- 106.
- Oh, that's where I'm going.
Come on.
- Good.
- Evening, everyone.
For those of you who are
just starting with us,
I want you to understand,
this is your group.
I'm only here to expedite
and make things easier.
You all have at least one thing in common.
You have a child who's been
arrested for holding drugs.
So what we want to do in this room tonight
is get at our feelings, get at the anger,
get at the fear, and the hopelessness.
Because I know, as soon as
there's any kind of trouble
with the law, the first
impulse is to shut that door,
pull those drapes, and hide that shame.
Well, that doesn't do any good for anyone.
Let's open up.
And share.
Who wants to start tonight?
Someone, then, just tell
us how it feels to be here.
- Degrading.
- If you'd give us your
name first, please.
- Morris Polk.
- Thank you.
- As far as I'm concerned,
this whole set up is
another piece of bureaucratic blackmail.
- You feel blackmailed?
- Right!
You all will be told.
"We'll let your kid off the
hook if you'll agree to bring
"him to the drug council for six weeks,"
so a couple of hundred
freeloaders who work here
can stay on the county payroll.
- [Man] Larry Sullivan.
Mr. Polk, would it have made
you happier if they'd pressed
charges against your son?
- I'll tell you what will make me happy.
Have the cops out busting
muggers and killers
instead of busting a bunch of kids.
- My name's Betty Firmani.
Your son broke the law,
Mr. Polk, and so did mine.
- So what?
Everybody breaks the law.
Our kids were just dumb enough
to be caught, that's all.
So they put us through
this group think session.
Let me pay a fine.
Forget it.
- What was your son holding
when they busted him?
- LSD.
- [Woman] Has he had many trips?
- How would I know?
These kids, they'll try anything.
- My daughter tried LSD.
Once too often.
She's been in a coma
for the past 19 months.
You're dead wrong if you think that a
light fine and forget-it is the answer.
- Mrs. Blair.
With your daughter as
she is, why are you here?
I mean, how can this help her?
- It can't.
But it helps me.
- Mrs. Firmani, I forget.
Are you a widow?
- No, my husband works nights.
- Does that mean that
you have all the
responsibility of your son?
- No, Gino's a good father.
- [Larry] What does that mean?
- Just what I said.
- He pays the rent,
and he gives you the
money to buy the food?
- No, he's a good father!
- He's close to your son,
then, is that what you mean?
- Do they talk?
- Of course they talk!
Maybe not as much since
Gino's been working nights.
- When did your husband go on nights?
- About six months ago.
- He had no choice?
- What, did he make more money, what?
- No, he just decided that
he wanted to work nights.
Look, I don't understand
why we're making such
a big deal about this.
I mean, what does it have
to do with why I'm here?
- Domenic didn't get where
he is all by himself.
- You said last week that six months ago,
Dom began to, you began to
notice changes in him, right?
Well, that's when your
husband deserted your son.
- What are you talking about?
- Look, can you honestly
deny that the changes in your
behavior and your husband's
behavior have not touched--
- Domenic doesn't know
anything about this.
Now, what's between me and
Gino, that's our business.
- No, Betty, that isn't
the truth and you know it!
- Don't you call me a liar!
- But you're pretending.
You see, you're play acting,
and Domenic can't buy that.
- [Sullivan] That's why he's
got to go somewhere else
to think about it.
- Our home is a good
place, it's a quiet place.
Now, you don't here me and
Gino yelling at one another,
like a lot of other couples that I know.
- Maybe that's the problem.
Maybe there should be some yelling.
- Yeah, you've gotta open up.
You've gotta talk with one another.
Look, your guts are
twisted up inside of you.
You've gotta spill it all out,
you've gotta get rid of it.
- I can't!
He won't let me.
All he cares about is how it looks.
We're just like strangers
going through motions.
Oh, god.
I'd like to scream.
And talk.
We haven't talked to one another in years.
- It's all right, Betty.
(moody atmospheric music)
- Why are you home so early?
- I quit the job.
- Quit or got fired?
- I quit the job!
Before Old Man Harris fired me.
They hired a lot more
people than they need,
and now they're cutting back.
The past couple weeks, that old crock
has been laying all the dirty stuff on me,
just waiting for me to quit.
So, I did.
Well, don't you believe me?
- Why shouldn't I believe you?
- I suppose you think I should've
just hung right in there,
no matter what the old buzzard did to me.
- Well, it's your job.
You've gotta make up your own mind.
- It seems to me I deserve a little credit
for hanging in there as long as I did.
- Oh, I agree.
Look, uh...
You saved your money, right?
You proved you could get a job, right?
The thing to do is to find
something else right away.
- Yeah, sure.
I'm really tired, I'm gonna turn in.
- Well it's early, Maybe we
could find something good on TV?
- [Richie] I'm really bushed.
(moody atmospheric music)
(thunder claps)
- Listen to that!
Why not?
- I don't wanna get started.
(Brick sighs)
- Come on, man.
Just get high, listen to the rain fall.
Come on, Richie, just take it.
Take a couple of hits.
You're not gonna turn into a dope fiend.
It's only marijuana.
Go ahead, Rich.
Just breathe it in.
The rain sounds so fine when you're high.
It sounds like, like
it's, uh, I don't know.
(thunder claps)
- You going job hunting today?
- I don't know.
- I wouldn't put it off if I were you.
- Give me a chance to
catch my breath, will you?
- Well, it's what you do
when you catch your breath
that worries me.
- Dad!
Please, let's not start up, all right?
- Hey, listen, do you know that charity
I work with for exceptional children?
- Yeah, what about it?
- Well, we are throwing a big
dance to raise some money.
- Mom, what's that got
to do with anything?
- Well, we're also
selling chances on a car.
Anybody who sells $100 worth of chances
gets two free tickets to the dance.
- Uh-uh, Ma.
Uh-uh, not me.
- Why not?
You can take that nice
little girl, what's her name?
- Her name's Sheila,
and I could never sell
$100 worth of chances.
- Bet you could.
- Well, even if I could,
she probably wouldn't
even wanna go with me.
- I'll get you a new suit,
she'd love to go with you.
- Mom, please, just cut it out.
- Hey.
I'll help you, if you want me to.
I mean, we could go to
those shopping centers,
work the parking lots.
I'll bet we could do it.
- Well, if we haven't sold $50
worth by noon, call it quits?
- You got a deal.
(jazzy piano music)
- Here, let me help you with that.
- Thanks.
- Please, ma'am, I only have
to sell two more tickets.
Just two more tickets.
- Really, I'm not interested.
- Not interested?
My god, not interested in that car?
That's the most ridiculous
thing I heard all day.
I tell you what I'm gonna do.
You buy two tickets to that car,
and I will come and personally
wash it, rain or shine,
every Saturday if you win.
(mumbles) and you win a new car.
- Yeah, all right, all right, I'll buy it.
- Ah, yes.
- Um...
- Yeah.
- Thank you!
- [George] That a boy!
- Richie, where are we going?
- I told you, for a walk by the lake!
- Walk! (pants)
We just set a new world's record.
- Oh, that's okay, come on.
- Wait, wait a minute.
- Uh-uh, uh-uh, not today.
I wanna keep going faster
and faster and faster
and faster and faster and faster!
This is fun!
(Sheila pants)
- Richie, what kind of high are you on?
- Oh, gosh.
The greatest.
The greatest!
Au natural.
- I've never seen you like this.
- Yeah, I know.
Sheila, I wanted to do something,
but I didn't ever think
I could bring it home.
I mean, well, for once, I
didn't talk myself out of it.
I just went ahead and I tried.
What do you know?
I was sensational!
- Of course!
What did you do?
- I did it,
partly for you.
- What did you do for me?
I was so scared.
You were gone.
I mean...
With the pills.
Hey, if you did something partly for me,
don't I have a right to know what it is?
- Yeah, well...
You know my mom, she works
for this charity outfit.
And they're throwing this
fancy dance, $25 a couple.
So what did I do?
I go out and I sell $100
worth of chances on the car,
and as a prize, I won two
tickets to that fancy dance!
- $100 worth of chances?
- Yeah, you should've seen me.
I mean, it was like
nobody could say no to me.
I don't know.
Sheila, will you go with me?
- When is it?
- It's next Friday night.
I'm also getting a new suit--
- Richie...
I can't.
(suspenseful tones)
- Why not?
- I have a date with somebody else.
- You don't understand.
This is very special.
- I know.
I'm sorry, I can't just
dump on this other guy.
- Okay.
- [Sheila] I hadn't heard
from you in so long.
- It's okay.
- Richie?
There'll be another time.
- Right.
There's always another time.
- Hey, Richie, you wanna play some catch?
- It's too hot.
- Dad tell you to clean up the basement?
- I do things without being told.
- Hey, hey, what was this for?
- That was for my crow.
- Your crow?
You had a pet crow?
- Yeah.
That was when you were real little.
Boy, you should've heard him talk.
- What'd he say?
- All kinds of things.
Made a lot more sense than most people.
- I guess you had just
about every kind of pet.
Dogs, rabbits, skunks.
- Yeah, a skunk.
Good old Cologne.
- Mom used to tell me she
thought you were gonna
either be a zookeeper or a veterinarian.
- Yeah, that's 'cause all
the kids used to bring me
their pets when they were sick.
I'd take really good care of 'em.
(doorbell rings)
- Oh, I gotta get the door.
- Who is it Russell?
- [Russell] It's somebody for you.
- Who is it?
- Richie.
- What are you doing here?
- We're on our way to the lake, man.
We got a couple of bottles of sweet wine.
Some really, really fine Colombian.
I thought you might be in
the mood for a little picnic.
- I'm cleaning up the basement, man!
- Don't get uptight, man, come on!
Get outta the house, go up to
the lake, get a little sun,
play a little music, smoke a little dope.
- Okay.
I'll just get my towel.
- Okay, man.
(moody atmospheric music)
What're you looking at?
- Nothing, I was just gettin'...
- [Brick] You wanna to get high?
- No.
- [Brick] Go ahead, man.
It's good, really.
It won't hurt you, just take a hit.
Go ahead.
Go ahead.
- Cut it out, Brick!
- It's cool, man, don't get uptight.
- What're you trying to do?
- Don't worry about it, okay?
I'll meet you in the car.
- [Richie] You tell
Daddy, and I'll bust you.
- Okay, Rich.
- And if you ever turn into a head...
I'll break your bones.
- Yeah.
(lively blues music)
- Woo!
Yo, hear me sing!
- Excellent use of
strawberries, I tell you.
What year was that, man
- This stuff was bottled
the day before yesterday.
Stuff was bottled day before yesterday
Is that right?
Is that right, Peanut?
- That's right!
- Hey, Richie, want some of this, man?
- Go for it, Rich.
- Uh-uh.
- Hey, Richie.
- Hi.
- [Brick] Who's the chick, Richie?
- That's Janie, Kurt Taylor's girl.
Oh, Janie
Oh, whoa, whoa, whoa
Oh, Janie
Whoa, Janie
Come over here, Janie, baby
Sing the blues with me, darlin'
(teenagers chuckle)
(tense atmospheric music)
(lively blues music)
Play the blues, come on
(suspenseful atmospheric music)
- [George] Richie?
Richie, what's the matter, son?
- Get out of my way.
Get out of my way!
- Richie?
You better tell us what happened.
You get into a fight?
- Richie?
- Leave me alone!
- What's wrong with him?
(George sighs)
- Same thing as always.
(muffled sobs)
(Richie sobs)
- Go away!
Go away, leave me alone!
Stop it!
Stop it!
- Richie.
(George pants)
(dark atmospheric music)
- Cool it!
- Don't you tell me to cool it!
- Come on, Richie.
Come on, Richie, let's get outta here.
Richie, what are you doing, man?
- Where is he?
- Reds, how many did you take?
You took nine reds?
What're you trying to do, Richie?
Nobody takes nine reds.
- Do one thing.
But do it right.
- My god, Richie!
Crazy, Richie!
(car approaches)
- Please, George.
Leave him alone.
Don't bother him now.
I mean, it's just gonna make things worse.
Let him go to bed and get some sleep.
Next week he'll be back at school again.
I think things will be a whole lot better.
- [Brick] Just lift up
your feet, come on, Richie.
- Please.
- You okay?
- For me?
- [Brick] Richie.
- Okay.
- Come on.
Just lift up your feet, come on, Richie.
You okay?
Give me the key.
(door unlocks)
(muffled clattering and smashing)
(phone rings)
- Hello?
- Mr. Werner?
- That's right.
- This is Jim Fisher.
Principal of the high school.
Could you please come
over and pick up your son?
- What's the matter,
Richie sick or something?
- So far this morning, he has threatened
a study hall supervisor,
was very abusive to me,
and tried to attack the school nurse.
- I'll be right over.
- What is it?
- Richie.
(Richie groans)
(Richie mumbles)
- Oh, it's parents day.
- Oh, Richie.
- Oh, Dad, really.
Good to see you.
Good to see.
- All right, all right,
please let me talk--
- Oh, that lady, she's all heart.
Underneath that star's uniform
is another star's uniform.
- Mr. Werner, please.
- Get her outta here!
- Richie, Richie, come on.
- Thank you for responding
so promptly, Mr. Werner.
We really couldn't do
anything with Richie.
In study hall, he threatened
to hit Miss Garth.
He was violently abusive to the principal,
and when I tried to help
him, he tried to attack me.
I asked him if he was taking medication.
He said it was antibiotics from...
Yes, well, I'd guess barbiturates.
- I'll take him home.
Come on, Richie, let's go home.
- Uh-uh, she lied to you, you know that?
Lies, lies, nothing but lies!
(yelling over each other)
- I'm sick.
Oh, god.
Won't anybody believe I'm sick?
- [Sheila] It's all right, Richie.
We're gonna go home.
Why won't anybody believe I'm sick?
- Shh.
- Let's go home.
Everything's going to be all right.
- We're gonna go home.
- Come on, now.
- Hello, Betty, this is Carol.
- Carol, how are you?
It's been such a long
time since we talked.
- Oh, I know, not since that
night at the drug council.
Listen, are you and Domenic
still going to the clinic?
- We sure are.
And Gino's gotten off working
nights, so he goes too.
No miracles, but everything's
better, a lot better.
- Listen, I can't talk right
now, I'll call you back later.
George, we have got to talk.
- I can't now, I'm due at the gun club.
- Can't that wait, please?
George, we have got to get
some help for Richie right now.
With those barbiturates,
he could kill himself.
If we had gone to that drug council--
- I'm not laying my problems
out to a bunch of strangers.
- George, you went to court,
you told the caseworker,
you told the judge--
- Yeah, well that's different.
That's the law.
- You know Betty Firmoni?
Well, she has a son
who had a drug problem.
Ever since they've been
going to the clinic,
he's been doing a whole lot better.
- Richie won't go.
- He would if you went with
him, if we all went together.
It is a family problem.
- Richie's the family problem.
He's the only problem this
family's got, and my getting
involved in that situation
isn't gonna change him.
And until something changes him,
we're never gonna have
any peace in this house.
I'm more interested in how
to get him back into school.
- Your performance is poor,
the semester's half over,
and you're failing in every course.
- Well, I realize that.
I guess it made me kind of desperate.
- Less desperation, Richard,
and more perspiration.
- Hard work.
- There's no substitute for it.
Maybe you don't care whether you graduate?
- I do care.
I do.
It's very important to me.
- Why?
- I want to go on to college.
My parents would like that very much.
I'd like to get into electronics.
You know, sound engineering.
- All right, you really seem to mean it.
But you have to more than
say that you wanna graduate.
You have to do something about it.
I'll expect to see an improvement,
an immediate improvement,
in your attendance,
application, and your attitude.
- Yeah.
- You're reinstated.
(Richie chuckles)
- Thank you.
- Richard?
Do a good job.
Don't disappoint me.
- No, sir.
(chuckles) I mean, yes, sir.
(bell rings)
(principal sighs)
(doorbell rings)
- [Children] Trick or treat!
- [Carol] One for you,
there's one for you, for you.
- Thank you!
- That's it.
Run along now, be careful
now, watch out for the cars.
Bye bye.
- Bye.
Remember the neat costumes
you used to make for me?
- Oh, do I remember, how could I forget?
You'd start nagging me every year
just before school would start.
"What am I gonna be for Halloween?"
- Every year it had to be different.
Almost every year I'd
walk off with first prize.
All the kids wanted to go with me.
You know, so people would
get turned on by my costume,
give me extra junk.
(doorbell rings)
Let me get that.
- [Children] Trick or treat!
- Let me see.
Here, have that, open your mouth.
All right.
- Thank you.
Thank you, bye!
- Bye.
(melancholic music)
It's garbage.
- Richie?
- Richie, shut the door, will you?
It's cold.
- You knock.
You hold out your sack,
expecting cookies and candies.
You fill it with garbage.
- Richie, what're you talking about?
- Richie, will you shut the door, please?
- I'm going out.
- No, you're not.
We had a deal, remember?
Weeknights, you're to stay home and study.
You promised the principal.
- Screw that, I'm going out.
- You heard your mother.
You're not going anywhere.
- I wouldn't bank on that.
- If you go out now,
don't bother to come back.
The door will be locked.
(door rattles)
(door rattles)
- [Richie] Let me in!
Let me in, let me in!
- George, please.
- [Richie] Let me in!
Let me in!
Let me in!
Let me in, let me in.
Let me in.
Let me in.
Let me in, let me in,
let me in, let me in!
Let me in!
How can anybody be as mean as you are?
I mean, what have I ever
done to you in my whole life
to make you angry so much?
- Richie, come over here.
- You hate me!
- Your mother and I love you.
- [Richie] No, you don't,
you hate me, you hate me!
- We've done our best to give you
everything to make you happy.
- Oh, sure.
You go through the motions
when people are watching,
but you don't mean it.
You don't feel it!
- You're in no condition
to judge my feelings.
- Why don't you be honest with me?
The only reason I'm here is 17 years ago,
you and Mom made a
mistake, that's what I am!
I'm a mistake when you
started fooling around!
- Dad!
(Richie groans)
Hey, Richie, I love ya.
- [George] Russell, go to bed.
- Daddy, how could you--
- Go to bed now.
Everything will be all right.
(Russell sobs)
Go ahead.
- We have got to get this miracle.
(melancholic music)
I really can't believe this.
Bugging the phone, how in,
how in the name of God is
that gonna help Richie?
- He won't listen to us, will he?
Not while he's hanging out
with those friends of his.
So I'm gonna find a
way to make him listen.
- Like that?
- That's right.
Where is he getting the
money to buy these drugs?
- I don't know.
- [George] I think he's
doing more than using.
I think he's selling now.
- You don't know that.
- Or he's stealing to get the money.
Either way, it's against the law.
When I find that out, he's
gonna have to listen to me.
Or go to jail.
- It's wrong, George.
I know that it's wrong for a
father to do that to his son.
- What else do you want me to do?
And don't start up
about that drug council.
We're way past that.
(Richie chuckles)
- [Richie] We got some really good grass?
- [Peanuts] I was there when he bought it.
- Did you get it for him?
- No, uh-uh.
- Don't you think it's good?
- Paid enough for it.
Paid $130 for a half a pound.
- Wait, are you serious?
- I swear to God.
And listen to this.
There's about five ounces of twigs in it.
Couldn't even see green, all
you could see was lumber.
- [Richie] (chuckles) Oh, god.
(tape rewinds)
- [Brick] Hey, Richie,
what's happening, man?
- [Richie] Listen, Peanuts
is here, and he says
he's ready to make a buyer
of that hash, you know?
- [Brick] Where did
Peanuts get 10 bucks, huh?
- [Richie] Well, he doesn't
have it right this minute,
but somebody's buying some grass from him
in about 10 minutes.
- [George] boys heard enough?
Now, that's just a sample.
I have a few more of these cassettes.
- What're you gonna do with them?
- I should tell the police.
And that would be the
finish of anybody on parole.
But I think the fair thing to
do is to call your parents.
- [Peanuts] Don't call my
folks, they got enough problems.
Why are you doing this anyway?
- To save my son!
- Don't look at me, guys.
- Okay, okay, go ahead, tell 'em.
I mean, what do I care?
They know all about it.
- I don't think that's true.
- What if we promise to stop?
- I wouldn't believe it.
But in spite of that, I'm going
to give you another chance.
I won't tell the police,
I won't call your parents.
And in return, Richie isn't
to see any one of you anymore.
Or talk to you on the phone.
Say your goodbyes.
- What a chump!
I don't believe this
guy, bugging his own kid.
- Richie.
You think your old man's really
out to make trouble for us?
- My old man ain't making
trouble for nobody.
Except himself.
- That's cool.
- Catch you later, Rich.
- I'll see you, Richie.
- Yeah, later.
- May I please finish
up in the living room?
There's some TV I want to watch.
- Go ahead.
Don't you want some more coffee?
- No.
You know, I was thinking today,
maybe we could get that new
bike for Russell for Christmas.
- Christmas?
It's a long way off.
- It'll be here before we know it.
I've, uh, got some supper for you, Richie.
- I'm not hungry.
- He found something better than food.
That promise you and your buddies made me
didn't last long, did it?
- What we do is no business of yours.
- Well, then I'll let
the police handle it.
- Get out of my way.
- You're not going anywhere!
- You better do what I tell you, man!
I got a razor right here, you
stand there and I'll use it!
- Please, stop it!
You know, Richie.
If you hate us so much,
everything that we are,
everything that we believe in,
then why don't you just go away?
Please, just go away.
- I'm sorry.
Your honor, we need help.
My son hates me.
He says he loves his mother,
but he's killing her
with the things he does.
Crazy things.
I can't talk to him.
Whenever I try, he turns nasty.
Last time, he threatened me with a razor.
I don't know what to do.
I hope you can help us.
- Mr. Werner, you've asked this court
for an order of protection.
That's a very rare legal
tool, something a judge only
reaches for when there just
aren't any alternatives left.
If a child breaks such an order,
the police make an automatic arrest,
and the child goes to jail for six months.
- That's what I want.
- What's all this about threatening
your father with a razor?
- He was after me, I just
wanted to get him off my back.
- That's a lie!
- Mr. Werner, you'll have your turn.
- I didn't have any razor,
just wanted him to think I did.
- Before we take any action
in this order of protection,
I'm again recommending family counseling,
because you and your son
can't talk to each other.
You'll have to talk to each other.
If you don't, you'll never find an answer,
certainly not in this court.
Do you understand the recommendation?
- Yes, your honor.
- You make go, Mr. Werner.
- I told you this family
counseling business
is a waste of time.
- George, you weren't in
there for five minutes.
- Yeah? Well, I'm not
the trouble-maker, he is!
- [Carol] Look, a lot of what Richie does
is because of the way he feels about us.
- He doesn't give a damn about
us, he's in there right now
telling one of his cock and bull stories.
What're we gonna be
when we get out of here?
- Well, it's helped the Firmanis.
I mean, Dom's doing...
- Mrs. Werner, would you
like to come in now, please?
Mrs. Werner, I feel the
situation in your family
is very critical and we
should try to fill it out
as quickly as we can.
If I could have all three
of you in here together?
- Can we do it now?
- I wish that were possible.
But I have to testify in juvenile court.
What about the same
time tomorrow afternoon?
- Yeah, I think that'd be
fine, can I just go check?
- [Counselor] Of course.
- Richie?
Miss Franklin said she'd like
to see us all again tomorrow.
- Not me, I'll be on the road,
the next three or four days.
- I'll tell you what, I'll
be through in court by five.
I'll come back.
- No, I can't waste any more time.
- George, maybe Richie and
I could come back tomorrow.
- I'm not coming without him, no way.
- When you agree on a
time, if you'll call me?
- Yeah, sure.
(melancholic music)
- They'll never agree on a time.
I'm sorry.
- [Sheila] It's gonna be
a real nice party, Richie.
Everybody'd like you to come.
- [Richie] I can't make it.
- [Sheila] Why not?
(Richie sighs)
- [Richie] There'd be a
lot of people I don't know.
- [Sheila] That's no reason.
I want you to come.
It's good to feel wanted, you know.
- [Richie] What?
- Did you ever feel wanted?
- Who, me?
Never heard of the word.
(switch clicks)
(tape rewinds)
- [Sheila] It's good to
feel wanted, you know.
- [Richie] What?
- [Sheila] Did you ever feel wanted?
- [Richie] Who, me? (chuckles)
Never even heard of the word.
(George sobs)
(background chatter)
- I think that that's the prettiest tree
that you've ever had.
- You say that every year, Aunt Elaine.
- Yeah, usually after your second drink.
Well, George really
makes this a powerhouse.
- That's good for you,
Christmas comes but once a year.
- My dear, where's Richie?
- Well, he's around.
- [Elaine] No, he's getting
ready to make a big entrance.
That kid should be on TV.
- Yeah, maybe he deserted
us for his girlfriend.
- Well, he doesn't go steady with anybody.
- Oh, he hasn't met the right girl yet.
- Or maybe he's met her
and doesn't know it.
- When he meets her, he'll know it.
- Oh, listen to the expert.
What made you so sure that Carol
was the right girl for you?
- Let's see now.
- I happened to live across the street.
- Right, she lived across
the street, and I was lazy.
- (laughs) Okay.
Okay, now we know why George
wanted you to marry him.
But, sis, why did you say yes?
- Because I'm perfect.
- I'll tell you why she said yes.
Because her father brought her up right.
And when a good man tells
her what to do, she does it.
- Oh, terrific.
So how come he didn't
train my wife the same way?
- [Elaine] Eddie, you know
that your wish is my command.
- Mom, you're not eating everything.
Why don't you have some
chips and dip or something?
- Fuss over me, I love it.
Are you all right, do you feel all right?
- Yeah, sure, why?
- Well, you look tired and
you seem to be worried.
Maybe you're trying to do too much.
I know that bringing
up two boys these days
is enough to frazzle anybody.
Where is that oldest scamp of yours?
- Oh, he is in his
room, listening to rock.
- He could take the time to
come say hello to his grandma.
I'm gonna roust him.
- No, you sit still.
I'm gonna get him.
(muffled rock music)
(moody rock music)
- Put that out, put it out and get up
and come say hello to grandma and grandpa.
Oh, Richie, please, not tonight.
It's Christmas Eve.
Please get up and come with me.
- I can't, Mom.
I can't.
'Tis the season to be jolly
Don we now our gay apparel
Troll the ancient yuletide carol
Deck the halls with boughs of holly
(funky rock music)
- [Man] Yeah, Rich, this is
some kind of room you got here.
- Maybe I should've been
an interior decorator, huh?
- Thing is, with all this stuff going on,
how do you get any sleep, huh?
- Oh, I manage.
One way or another.
- [Woman] Richie.
- What is this?
What're you guys doing here?
Hey, this is my room, what
do you think you're doing?
Get your hands off that, will ya?
What right have you got to
come busting in here like this?
- I'll ask the questions!
Now, what're you doing home at this hour?
- I've been suspended.
- Oh.
Sure, he finally got wise to you, huh?
- You brought the fuzz here
to make a bust, didn't you?
- That's right.
- You fink.
- Mr. Werner, we were
only listening to records.
- That's right, Richie got suspended,
and we only came here to
keep him company, that's all.
- Yeah, yeah, yeah, sure.
- Think we better go.
- Bye, Richie.
- What's going on?
Why didn't you send for the Marines?
Call the FBI while you're at it?
Hey, you need some help?
Here, look in the pockets!
Oh, they're all over
the place, everything.
My little kid stuff, everything.
Place looks clean, Mr. Werner.
- I'm sorry, I, I was sure--
- Yeah, I understand.
Take care, Mr. Werner.
- Bye, officers.
- You're really let down, aren't you?
Oh, you were so sure you'd nailed me.
You were gonna stand there
with that pained look on
your face, shaking your dumb
head just like you always do,
while the fuzz hauled me
off to the slammer, huh?
Well, it's too bad, but I guess
you'll just have to keep him
locked up for the rest of
his unnatural life, huh?
Wait a minute.
- I have to go to work.
- Oh, someday, you're gonna get it!
- Come on, punk!
Let's get it on, right now!
- When you and me fight,
it's not gonna be fair.
It never has been!
One night, these are gonna
be right at your throat!
- You're not my son, you're an animal!
- Oh, I'll do it!
- Richie.
Let's, uh...
Let's stop this.
Let's sit down and try to talk, huh?
- I'm tired of talking.
I'm tired of talking to you.
- I'm tired of everything.
(breathes heavily)
(grunts dramatically)
- [Richie] Oh, god!
- Richie?
Richie, please, I, I can't,
I can't even make out what you're saying.
(Richie grunts)
Please, just try to stop crying.
(Richie grunts)
- They stopped me, and I went under,
with this other, I didn't
touch him, I didn't touch him.
- Richie, are you on something?
- No.
I'm crazy!
- You're not, don't say that.
- I don't know what to
say, I tried to kill him!
- All right, Richie, now, just calm down.
Just calm down, try to rest.
I'll get home just as fast as I can.
- What is it?
- Look, you know people
at that medical center.
I gotta get Richie to a psychiatrist.
- Carol, what's the matter?
- It's Richie, I've gotta get some help.
You get me help.
- All right, sure, sure.
Listen, just leave it up to me, okay?
(somber string music)
- [Richie] "Circle the
questions you feel apply to you.
"Do you feel alone at a party?
"Are you easily upset or irritated?
"Do you have to be on
guard, even with friends?
"Do you feel alienated from your parents?"
- [Psychiatrist] "Patient number 5871.
"Smokes pot, uses downer pills.
"Patient could not keep job.
"Patient feels angry, aggressive,
especially towards father.
"Patient has friends he trusts, Pat, Kurt.
"Patient does not like school."
- [Richie] "Name, age, height, weight."
That isn't me.
I wish he'd look at me.
Why should he?
I mean, what am I to him?
I'm not a person.
I'm numbers on a sheet of paper.
I'm Richie.
Richie is scared.
Richie is lonely.
Richie is going out of his head.
- [Psychiatrist] You
have petitioned the court
for an order of protection against Richie.
When the court authorizes it,
we'll accept him as an outpatient.
- [Carol] Didn't he tell you about
attacking his father with the scissors?
- [Psychiatrist] Yes, he did.
- [Carol] Don't you think that
he needs immediate attention?
- [Psychiatrist] It must
be cleared with the court.
- [Carol] Can you at least
tell me what's wrong?
- [Psychiatrist] Well,
your son may be sociopathic
with drug abuse, or there
may be latent schizophrenia
with drug abuse, or the diagnosis may be
personality with drug abuse.
- Those are just words.
- You asked for a diagnosis.
- No, I asked for help.
- Well, we want help,
but there are rules and--
- He's sick.
He's dangerous.
- [Psychiatrist] Mrs. Werner,
your son should've been
brought to us a year ago, two years.
It took time for him to get this sick.
It will take time to help him get well.
- I'm Richie.
Richie, Richie!
I'm not scared of nothing.
I mean, when I get this
feeling, it's like, I can handle
any problem and come off
just like a hero, you know?
Stand back, world,
'cause here comes Richie.
And nobody can stop him.
- I'm George Werner, I'm his father.
- He must've been doing 40 or
50 to make a mess like this.
You're lucky nobody was hurt.
- Yeah.
- Your son says you're covered.
- [George] That's right, I'm covered.
- He's covered.
- So now what?
- I don't know what to tell you.
I don't even know why you're here.
I mean, I can handle everything.
- You can't handle anything!
What are you on today?
- What am I on?
- Yeah, what are you on?
- I'm on the spot, man!
- You think this is funny?
- Yeah, I think it's funny. (chuckles)
It's hilarious.
Especially you, you're one big joke book!
- Now, take him home.
- You just order everybody
around, don't you?
- Come on, let's go home, huh?
- You've got a hell of
a mess on your hands.
The insurance gonna cover this?
- Yeah.
My carrier is...
DA Goyer.
(tense atmospheric music)
- Hey, you!
Did you tell those cops
I was on drugs, huh?
Damn it, answer me!
Hey, you!
- Richie.
Richie, go to your room.
Listen to me!
I want you out.
(Richie yells)
- You!
Did you tell those cops I used dope, huh?
- [Carol] Stop it!
- I asked you a question,
now I want an answer, huh!
Now, I want an answer, huh!
Did you tell those cops I used dope?
You answer me!
I got you now, answer me!
Look at that!
He's got a gun, look at that!
Go ahead, shoot me!
- Stop it!
- Come on, use it!
Come on, use it!
- Please!
- Use it!
- Please!
- Shoot me!
- Stop it!
- Go ahead!
(gun cocks)
Go ahead!
Shoot me!
Shoot me!
- Stop it, stop it!
(Richie grunts)
(Richie groans and pants)
Oh, my god, my god,
what're we going to do?
- I don't know.
I don't know.
- Shoot me!
Shoot me!
Shoot me!
Shoot me, shoot me!
Shoot me!
(gun fires)
- The Lord is my shepherd.
I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie
down in green pastures.
He leadeth me beside still waters.
He restoreth my soul.
He leadeth me in the path of righteousness
for his namesake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley
of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil.
For thou art with me.
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table
before me in the presence
of mine enemies.
Thou anointeth my head with oil.
My cup runneth over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall
follow me all the days of my
life, and I will dwell in the
house of the Lord forever.
- To us, you will exist,
in the flowers,
in the trees,
and in all the things of
nature God has given us.
You are now in a world,
of peace and happiness forever.
Pray for us,
as we pray for you.
And somewhere,
we shall join.
Love, from all your friends.
(melancholic music)