The Late George Apley (1947) Movie Script

Ah, Wilson.
A fine morning for Thanksgiving.
Did you enjoy your walk, sir?
- Very much, thank you.
Though I did see a man in shirtsleeves
at a front door on Marlborough Street.
It's rather cold for shirt sleeves, sir.
- That is hardly the point, Wilson.
It is never warm enough for
shirt sleeves. - No, sir.
Fortunately it was on
Marlborough Street.
Not Beacon Street.
Yes, sir.
What is it now, Margaret?
It's those green bugs, Mr Apley.
Why does something like this always
have to happen on Thanksgiving.
Last year there was a blizzard.
The year before that, the
mince pies fermented.
You know of course this isn't the first
time we've been attacked by aphids.
The last time was the
year of the Spanish war.
Well, it's just another of
those little things, Margaret.
Little things that
interfere with our lives.
Let me see. Emerson had something
capital to say about that.
Wait a minute, Margaret.
I wish you wouldn't put the
Scarlet Letter next to Emerson.
Here we are.
"God reappears with all his parts
in every moss and every cobweb."
"If the good is there, so is the evil."
"If the affinity, so the repulsion."
There you have it.
Ah, my dear.
Back already, George?
There is a new building
going up on Boylston Street.
It is to house something
called a "Haberdashery".
How do you like them?
- Like what, my dear?
The snapdragons with the pumpkins.
- Snapdragons and pumpkins.
Why, you've never done that before.
- I know.
It just came over me.
Verging a bit on the radical, isn't it?
Where is John?
- Oh, he'll be here.
You know how slow those
trolleys are from Cambridge.
He ought to be here now with
Agnes coming for dinner.
Yes, of course.
Yes, my dear?
Does it seem to you that
John has been a bit ..
Well, strange, these past few weeks?
Oh, no stranger than usual.
You must remember John is a sophomore.
I wonder if it could be a girl.
Some other girl? Not Agnes?
Oh nonsense, my dear.
John would have told us.
I wonder ..
What's in the paper, George?
Oh, Mr Justice Holmes has
written another dissent.
This child labor case. I do wish
he'd show a little more judgement.
But you are against child labor.
I know. But this constant dissenting ..
Creates a bad general impression.
Especially in a Bostonian.
- Is there any news from Europe?
Europe? Let's see. Thank you, my dear.
Foreign news. Here we are.
Boston woman becomes
mother of triplets in Rome.
Oh! Anyone we know?
- I'd love to go to Rome.
Why, Catherine.
Well we never seem to
go anywhere, George.
Boston in the winter.
Pequod Island in the summer.
It's the same thing every year.
I've never heard you
talk like this before.
Why shouldn't we do the
same thing every year?
Besides, you know how difficult
it is for me to get away.
I've so many obligations.
Now take next week for example.
On Monday night there's the trustee
meeting of the Boston Waif Society.
Our family charity.
On Tuesday afternoon,
the Tuesday afternoon club.
On Tuesday night, the
Save Boston Society.
It is about allowing an electric
sign on the edge of the common.
Is that so important, George?
My dear, it is going
to say "Grape Nuts".
I suppose we must put a stop to that.
Wednesday afternoon.
Committed to enquire into what's
wrong with Harvard football.
Wednesday night.
The Wednesday night club.
I know there is something on Thursday.
We are giving Agnes
her coming-out party.
Yes, I know my dear but
there is something else.
Something more important.
Ah, Thursday.
Yes, of course.
On Thursday afternoon ..
There is special meeting of the
Blue Hill Birdwatchers Society.
Is that more important, George?
- This particular meeting?
I think so, my dear.
You remember that old
Dr Beech died last week.
Well, there has to be a new
president of The Birdwatchers.
And I have every reason to believe ..
Oh George, how splendid.
Mind you, I don't say I'm worthy of it.
I think what really tipped the
scales in my favor was last Sunday.
When I saw the yellow-bellied sapsucker.
Have I told you about that?
Yes, I think so.
A yellow-bellied sapsucker in November.
It was quite late in the afternoon.
And I was coming home
through the Goodrich's pasture.
And as I was ..
Be right down. Got to wash.
Can't you wash at Harvard?
I do hope John isn't studying too hard.
What makes you think he is, my dear?
- Well, his eyes. They look so tired.
And so red. I've noticed it
particularly on Sundays.
Do you think Harvard is right to make
him study so hard on Saturday nights?
Harvard, my dear.
Let me see, where were we?
Oh yes, I was ..
We seem to do so many
little things, George.
We never seem to do
anything really important.
You don't think the Boston
Waifs are important?
Yes, I suppose they are, but ..
Couldn't someone else look after
the Boston Waifs? - My dear.
I mean just for a little while?
- I'm a trustee.
Yes, I know, but ..
Someone has to be a
trustee for the Boston Waifs.
Someone has to prevent harmful
literature from reaching our libraries.
Someone has to keep electric
signs off the common.
My grandfather. My father.
These are things that have
come down to me, Catherine.
You do so much for others.
So little for yourself.
I know it's hard for you, my dear.
But those of us who
are comfortable off ..
Must never forget our duty to
those who are not comfortably off.
I can only think of myself as a steward.
Who owes the community a definite debt.
As such, I have tried to be,
as my father was before me.
And his father before him.
And as my son will be someday.
Yes, George.
Let me see, I believe Emerson has
something capital to say about that.
Here come Roger and Amelia.
- Splendid.
Tell the children.
Where is Eleanor by the way?
She won't be here.
- Won't be here?
For Thanksgiving dinner?
It's her young man, George.
- I never heard of such a thing.
Please don't say anything
in front of the others.
She promised to bring
him in after dinner.
I never heard of such a thing.
Well, Wilson. Having a
happy Thanksgiving?
Yes thank you, Mrs Newcombe.
- Of course. Doesn't he look happy?
How are your teeth, Margaret?
- Dandy, thank you, ma'am.
It doesn't rub anymore, does it?
- No, ma'am.
I'm glad you took my advice Catherine,
and sent Margaret to Dr Bailey.
He was father's dentist you know.
I know. He's getting so old he can't
even see cavities. Hello, George.
I know. But he's very good
if you find your own cavities ..
And point them out to him.
Nice of you to come, Amelia.
Where else would I go on
Thanksgiving? My own brother.
You need a haircut, George.
Well. Where are the children?
John is washing.
Eleanor is ..
- Eleanor ..
Eleanor is with a young man.
A young man?
I never had a young man on Thanksgiving.
Too late now.
Who is this young man?
His name is Boulder.
Howard Boulder.
Boulder? I don't know any Boulders.
Is he from Boston?
He is from New York.
New York?
Now, Amelia.
We must be broadminded.
New York is ..
Well, it's not Boston of course.
As a matter of fact, I know
some people from New York.
Several .. people.
Well, if he is from New York,
what is he doing in Boston?
He's lecturing at Harvard.
Something to do with the
Jonathan Smythe fellowship.
The Jonathan Smythe of course.
You know the Jonathan
Smythe fellowship, Roger?
Buzzy Lauring is trustee for it.
- Oh, yes.
Do you know I worked out how to remember
what Buzzy Lauring is trustee for?
Is that so? How do you do it?
Whatever it is, if you're
not the trustee for it, he is.
[ Doorbell ]
I'll take it, Wilson.
Roger, you promised me.
Thanksgiving, my dear.
Unless I'm mistaken,
that's Horatio at the door.
What was it Harriet
Prescott Spofford said?
"Dear, the people coming home."
"All the glad and happy play."
"Dear the thanks to, that we give."
"For all of this Thanksgiving Day."
Dear Harriet Prescott Spofford.
Once more, please.
How do you do, Roger.
- Where is Agnes?
Agnes? Oh Agnes, dear.
Your cousin Amelia is asking for you.
I'm coming, Papa.
Well, Agnes my dear.
Well, what are you afraid of?
It's only the family.
Where is John?
Agnes is here and not John.
Hello everybody.
- Hello, John.
Well, what are you standing there for?
Aren't you going to speak
to your cousin Agnes?
Hello Agnes.
Hello John.
How does that go, Horatio?
"All the glad and happy play?"
Well, Agnes.
Aren't you going to
give John his present?
Oh Papa, not now.
Horatio, is she doesn't want
to give it to him now ..
Of course she wants
to give it to him now.
Why shouldn't she?
It's a tie.
She knitted it herself.
How sweet.
Well, why don't you ..
Why don't you put it on right now, John?
Oh, he doesn't have to do that.
I'm knitting him another one now.
With a lot more stripes.
Thanks Agnes, it's wonderful.
Really it is.
Just what I wanted. Thanks a lot.
Oh George. I knew I had
something to tell you.
I ran into Walter Noble this morning.
He told me about The Birdwatchers.
George is going to be the next
president of The Birdwatchers.
No, no. It's not definite at all yet.
You really mustn't say a thing about it.
It's very interesting though,
how it all came about.
Do tell us, George.
Well it happened last Sunday
quite late in the afternoon.
I was crossing the Goodrich's pasture.
Just where the path
forks towards the brook.
No the big brook. The little brook.
I don't know what first caught my
attention. There was no sound.
Oh, I'm sorry sir.
Merely a flash of color in the junipers.
A bright flash of yellow.
I just had time to raise my glasses.
And there, sitting on the lower limb.
Of the big shagbark
hickory by the stone wall.
Sitting there quietly as though
it were mid-summer. - George.
Not making a sound, mind you.
Yes, my dear?
Dinner is ready.
Oh yes, well we'll go in. Amelia.
John. Suppose you give Agnes your arm.
Come along, Jane.
But what was sitting there?
You can't leave us dangling, man.
A yellow-belied sapsucker.
- Yes.
Yes. A yellow-bellied sapsucker.
I suppose I'm the only living Bostonian
who's seen one so late in November.
Now then, white meat for
Amelia but no stuffing.
Now that we're all together here, there
is a little family matter I may take up.
It's about cousin Hattie.
Cousin Hattie is dead.
Been dead for a month.
That's just the point. While she was
alive, she gave us very little trouble.
Jane. Dark meat.
And stuffing.
As you know, the Henry Apleys are
a very distant branch of the family.
They are barely Apleys at all.
Do you really think you
should go into this?
I'm not sure you did the right thing.
I'm convinced that I did, Catherine.
Come to the point, George.
What is it all about?
It's about cousin Hattie's burial.
You mean to say they
haven't buried her yet?
They buried her at Mount Auburn.
And to that I have no general objection.
The family plot is
completely democratic.
Any Apley connection.
No matter how remote.
Is welcome to rest there.
Even you, Horatio.
By Jove, thank you, George.
Well, you're all fixed now, Horatio.
I always try to be present
at every family internment.
But in cousin Hattie's case I
was unavoidable detained.
Well, as long as cousin
Hattie was there.
Please, Roger.
Last week.
Catherine and I happened
to visit Mount Auburn.
I was particularly anxious to see ..
How the arborvitae border was
doing at the back of father's stone.
To my astonishment.
I saw a new headstone of pink granite
with a recumbent figure on it.
And there.
In our part of the lot.
Was cousin Hattie, large as life.
Well, there is nothing we
can do about it now.
On the contrary.
I have written Henry Apley a
letter explaining that he must ..
He must .. move his mother
somewhere else. Say ..
Down to the bottom of the slope.
It was very pushing of the Henry Apleys.
Putting their mother right where
George might want to go.
That is hardly the point, Horatio.
The. The only thing is.
Boston will be split
into factions over this.
People will take sides.
It will create talk.
It won't create talk at all. Who gives
a hoot where the Apleys are buried?
You know it is possible ..
There's quite a few people in the world
who have never even heard of the Apleys.
Nonsense! Everyone has
heard of us. In Boston, anyhow.
Whenever I'm depressed, I remind
myself that I .. am an Apley.
I'll have mine without stuffing, George.
- Thank you, George.
I have your chair, George.
- Oh no, no.
We've sat in these same seats
for eighteen Thanksgivings.
Why, what a peculiar thing to say, Jane.
Where else should we sit?
What would Thanksgiving
be without a family?
Agnes, why don't you play
something on the piano?
Oh no, Papa.
I'd rather not.
Agnes has learned a new piece.
Would you all like to hear it?
We should all like to hear it very much.
It is a waltz.
- I'm very fond of waltzes.
So is John.
Aren't you, John?
Yes, sir.
It's called "Sweet Little Marigold".
Why, that's one of your
cousin George's favorites.
Mother. This is Mr Boulder.
How do you do.
- How do you do.
My father.
- How do you do.
How do you do, sir.
Mrs Newcombe.
Mrs Willing.
Mr Willing.
How do you do.
- Miss Willing.
My brother.
- Hello, Ellie.
And Mr Newcombe - Mr Boulder.
How do you do, Mr Boulder.
- How do you do.
Eleanor has been telling
us about you, Mr Boulder.
Do sit down. It's just a family party.
Thank you.
- No, you.
Will you have a cigar, Mr Boulder?
No thank you, sir.
But if you have a cigarette?
I'm afraid we've never gone
quite so far as cigarettes.
That's alright, sir.
If you don't mind?
Eleanor tells me.
You are giving the Jonathan
Smythe lectures at Emerson Hall.
Yes, I am.
That's quite an achievement
at your age, Mr Boulder.
Oh, I'm probably a year or
two older than I look, sir.
He's been lecturing
ever since he got his ..
You have a PhD.?
Where was that, Mr Boulder?
- Yale?
But of course you were ..
You weren't an undergraduate there.
No, I went to Lehigh.
- Lehigh?
That's what he said.
Well, as a matter of fact,
I wanted to go to Harvard, but ..
I couldn't afford it, so I worked
my way through Lehigh as a waiter.
Well. As a waiter, eh?
Well .. Eleanor, the ash tray.
It's too late. He moved.
I'm terribly sorry, sir.
- Oh, that's quite alright.
George, take my chair.
No, no. Horatio.
- Yes, I can ..
Are you excited about coming out, Agnes?
Oh yes.
But I am a little bit afraid.
There is nothing to be afraid of.
You just see the same old faces.
No Yale boys. No Princeton boys.
Just Harvard boys.
And what is the matter
with Harvard boys?
Nothing, father.
They just go to Harvard.
Anyway, the whole thing is
an outmoded folk custom.
The what?
- Boston is full of them.
We are like a savage tribe.
We suffer from ancestor worship.
Thanksgiving is a typical tribal feast.
And coming out is
nothing but an old idea ..
Of introducing the virgin
to the rest of the tribe.
Really, Eleanor.
There are some things
we simply don't mention.
If things exist I don't see
why we shouldn't face them.
Because we do not face virginity in the
drawing room after Thanksgiving dinner.
What do you lecture on, Mr Boulder?
It's a course on American literature.
Especially the Concord group.
The Concord group.
That would be all the great figures.
Emerson, Thoreau, Hawthorne.
I think I might attend one of
your lectures myself, Mr Boulder.
What is your next one about?
It is called the Concord radicals.
Did you say "radicals", Mr Boulder?
- Yes, sir.
I must confess, I can't very well
picture Emerson as a radical.
Well he was sir, for his time.
So were the others.
Why, take Thoreau's essay
on civil disobedience.
Why there was a time when .. Beacon
Street had no use for Emerson at all.
And now they all quote him.
You see, that's the point
I make in my lecture.
Yesterday's radical is
today's stuffed shirt.
It is my occasional practice
to quote Emerson, Mr Boulder.
I do it myself sir. It's catching.
Yes, indeed.
We really must be going.
We are invited to Cambridge for tea.
Some friends of Howard's.
- Oh.
Must you .. go?
Yes. I am afraid we
are a little bit late.
Goodbye, Mr Apley.
- Goodbye, Mr Boulder.
Goodbye, sir.
- Goodbye.
Goodbye, Mrs Apley.
Do come again, Mr Boulder.
Oh he will. He'll come a lot.
Goodbye, everybody.
Goodbye, sir.
I wonder if Buzzy Lauring
ever heard those lectures.
He couldn't have.
He wouldn't tolerate it for a minute.
Agnes, do play some more.
Wouldn't you all like
Agnes to play some more?
Come, dear.
Will you all excuse me, please.
I'm afraid I've got to go.
I'm sorry, sir. There is an
English Lit' examination.
Surely, you can wait to hear Agnes play?
Well, I did hear her play.
I mean, I wish I could.
Agnes, maybe next week
sometime we'll get together.
I'm awfully sorry. You will forgive me.
I can't understand John's behaviour.
Well, as long as her cousins
can't stay to entertain her ..
I think we may as well go too.
Don't you, Agnes?
Yes, Papa.
- Come, Jane.
Oh, really.
- Jane.
I ..
Well, it seems George can't
even manage his own children.
Oh, I'm not blaming you,
Catherine. I feel sorry for you.
Well, I don't feel sorry for myself.
I'm perfectly satisfied.
I did think we could have one
Thanksgiving without a family quarrel.
Come along, Roger.
I should have been the boy.
Father always said so.
Goodbye, Catherine.
- Goodbye, Roger.
The pilgrims have the Indians, George.
We have Amelia.
Really, George.
Amelia's manners are
getting worse all the time.
The Apley women always had bad manners.
But I was looking forward
to a happy family party.
Are you using violet perfume?
Why, certainly not.
What a question, George.
I smell perfume. Cheap violet perfume.
It can't be Amelia.
It's this. It reeks of violets.
It is addressed to John.
It is addressed to John in
a woman's handwriting.
Catherine, you are right.
This explains his entire attitude.
Oh, good heavens.
- What?
It is postmarked "Worcester".
The girl is a foreigner.
Will you have some chestnuts, sir?
- Thank you.
Here you are, sir.
Thank you, sir.
[ Singing ]
"Every little moment has
a meaning of its own."
"Every little something has a .."
You wouldn't dare.
I wouldn't dare, wouldn't I?
No. You wouldn't dare, wouldn't you.
Oh, it's about time you learned.
That you should never dare an Apley.
It's about time you learned there are
some things a Boulder won't take.
Even from an Apley.
Oh, they won't?
That does it.
- What?
Howard, I didn't mean it.
Howard, let's talk it over.
Howard, I didn't mean it.
Please, Howard. Howard, you
couldn't. Howard, you wouldn't.
Howard, no. No!
Is there anything I can do, George?
I am perfectly capable of
handling my own affairs, Horatio.
Thank you.
Goodnight, gentlemen.
- Goodnight.
Goodnight Howard.
Goodnight, Eleanor.
I wonder if I should have done that.
Why shouldn't you?
Because it may be the first time a girl
was kissed goodnight on Beacon Street.
Howard, you are not going to
start thinking that way too?
I guess it's just the atmosphere.
It tends to get you.
You will have to fight it then.
Because here is the second time.
Yes, father?
I shall have to ask you for an
explanation of your behaviour.
What behaviour?
We do not throw snowballs at midnight in
the public garden at strange young men.
And what is wrong with
throwing snowballs?
You were seen by several
trustees of the Boston Waifs.
Oh, bother the Boston Waifs.
As well as by your cousin, Horatio.
Double bother cousin Horatio.
- Eleanor.
Eleanor, this is a very serious matter.
I am aware of the fact ..
That the Apley women are often
headstrong and eccentric.
Your aunt Amelia is an example.
Your great aunt Sarah kept
pet mice in her dining room.
There is such a thing as
carrying eccentricity too far.
It wasn't eccentricity.
I was just having a good time.
Second cousin Theodora thought she was
just "having a good time" as you say it.
When she found herself married to
an Irishman named O'Halloran.
And .. why shouldn't she marry
an Irishman named O'Halloran?
Here, let me help you.
- Oh.
Thank you.
Did that young man try to kiss you?
He tried to.
And I let him.
You let him?
Oh father, it ..
It isn't so terrible, is it?
I mean I won't have to wear a ..
A scarlet letter or anything
like that, will I?
But why?
Father. I'm in love with him.
That has nothing to do with it.
Oh, but it has.
Emotion is healthy, father.
It's right there in Freud.
- In what?
The new book my Dr Sigmund Freud.
I borrowed it from a Radcliffe girl.
They are all reading it.
Dr Freud says that it isn't showing
emotion that is unhealthy.
It is repressing it.
Pretending it doesn't exist.
The way we do in Boston.
It is my opinion that
Boston is what it is ..
Largely because we believe in
putting emotion in its place ..
And keeping it there.
Well, that's just what's wrong with us.
Yes. I think I've heard about enough.
Now go to bed.
We'll discuss it with your
mother in the morning.
Yes, father.
Ah, my dear.
George, we must send for a man from
the arboretum to trim the rubber tree.
It's about to burst through the roof.
The last time it did that,
my mother had the ..
The roof raised.
Well, it would be much
easier to trim the tree.
My dear, we mustn't forget that
my grandmother planted this tree.
It's probably the oldest
rubber tree in Boston.
Well it's certainly the
biggest and the ugliest.
I suppose one couldn't call it
a handsome tree, but after all ..
In any case, it is too important
a matter to be decided hastily.
Yes, George.
Here is a letter from Henry Apley.
Cousin Hattie has been .. moved.
Oh, I hope you haven't
hurt his feelings.
He has taken her out of
Mount Auburn entirely.
He need hardly have done that.
"In view of your astonishing attitude."
I don't think my attitude
was astonishing.
"It is my present plan to
have her buried at sea."
"I trust you have no prior
rights in the Atlantic Ocean."
That seems an unnecessary remark.
Well I .. I do hope
that's the end of it.
Yes, Wilson?
- Mr Williams, sir.
Oh yes, yes. I ..
I've asked him to come.
George, I've been to Worcester and I ..
- Shush.
But I've ..
- Wait, wait ..
Now. Tell me everything.
Well. Their name is "Dole".
- Julian H. Dole.
And the girl?
Myrtle Dole?
Mr Dole is the president of the
Dole Tool And Die Company.
Good morning, Horatio.
What is a "tool and die" company?
I don't know.
But I went to their house, George.
There was an iron deer on the lawn.
An iron ..?
- I was inside the house, George.
How did you manage that?
I said I was the man
to read the gas meter.
Though of course, I'm hardly the type.
By Jove, I'd never have thought of that.
Of course you would,
if you put your mind to it.
Anyway, once inside it was a simple
matter to engage a maid in conversation.
And what did she tell you?
As you know, George.
I have a way with women.
Yes, yes Horatio,
but what did you find out?
John has been down there
almost every evening.
In addition there are two letters
daily and flowers all the time.
She said it was cute to see
him so sweet on Miss Myrtle.
When Miss Myrtle was so sweet on him.
Those are her words, of course.
I want to be broadminded about this.
These people, these Julian
W. Doles may be perfectly ..
What was that?
- Julian H. Dole.
It doesn't matter, Horatio.
As I was saying they may be
perfectly nice people but ..
An iron deer, you said?
- Yes, and a fountain.
Of course, the fountain wasn't working.
- Why not?
Not at this time of year, George.
- No. No, of course not.
I'm sure you'll be able
to handle it, George.
Well, I'm very grateful to you, Horatio.
- No trouble at all.
I'll walk along with you.
- Going to the pub?
No, I'm going to Harvard.
But George, you went to
Harvard thirty years ago.
I am going to attend a lecture.
Buzzy Lauring.
Young Boulder, eh?
I'm glad you're doing this, George.
We must think of Eleanor's reputation.
It has nothing to do with
Eleanor's reputation.
It has to do with Emerson's reputation.
I think Buzzy Lauring should know ..
What Mr Boulder is saying
about Ralph Waldo Emerson.
That's all.
Coming, George?
Yes, I'm coming.
You are late.
- Yes.
My department had to send for me.
- And you forgot to bring your skates.
Howard, what is it?
I've been fired.
Oh, apparently Mr Bosworth Lauring.
Seems to think I'm poisoning
the mind of fair Harvard.
Bosworth Lauring?
That's Buzzy Lauring,
father's best friend.
I thought that might be it.
I saw your father at my last lecture.
If he thinks he can do ..
I'm going home this minute.
- Now, wait a minute.
In the first place you will
have to take your skates off.
And second, I'd rather
you said nothing about it.
Of course I will say something.
I'll make them take you back.
- Look. I've thought about this thing.
If the job depends
upon the whim of this ..
Buzzy whatisname it's not
the kind of a job I want.
Howard, what will you do?
Go to New York I guess.
Look for something else.
I had an offer from Columbia several
weeks ago. It may still be open.
But what will I do?
You can go away and ..
But I have to stay in Boston and
I couldn't stand Boston without you.
Oh, Howard.
Isn't this sort of public?
- I don't care. It will do them good.
You there! Want to see something?
I'll open it, Wilson.
Oh, it's you.
Is that a way to greet your own sister?
I'm delighted to see
you of course, Amelia.
But I was expecting a committee
from The Birdwatchers.
I'll wear the feather studs tonight,
Wilson. Not the moonstone.
The moonstones are prettier, George.
Not in a gathering of
young girls, my dear.
Isn't it exciting, Amelia.
Our own little Agnes coming out at last.
I do hope John has asked
Agnes for the supper dance.
Oh yes. I saw his name
on her dance program.
Remember how George used
to fill out our programs for us.
That's how I met Horatio.
George wrote him in.
I wonder what can be
detaining the committee?
I hope you can stay, Amelia.
Jane is sending Agnes over
in her new ball gown.
It is going to be too low in the bosom.
I have some tulle. Do stay.
First, I am going up to the attic to
get grandmother's cuckoo clock.
You've already taken the brass
fingerbowls with the whistles on them.
I want to speak to you, father.
Speak to me, Eleanor?
- Don't pretend.
You know perfectly well what I mean.
- Eleanor, the workmen.
I hope you're satisfied
with what you've done.
You and your Buzzy Lauring.
- Really, Eleanor.
Merely because I tried to protect the
memory of the late Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Don't be a hypocrite, father.
It doesn't become you.
I never thought I would
hear my own little girl ..
I'm not your little girl. I'm a woman.
Eleanor ..
- Yes. A woman in love.
Does that shock you?
Oh can't you understand, father?
This is serious.
I want to marry Howard.
I want to have his children.
I want my life with him.
Won't you even try to understand?
I do understand, Ellie.
Perhaps better than you think.
When you are in love it all
seems very easy, doesn't it.
There is nothing else to think
about except just being in love.
But life isn't so simple.
You have a position in the world.
You're an Apley.
And you can't ever forget it.
But I don't want to be an Apley.
I just want to be Mrs Boulder.
- No, Ellie.
You and I can't do things like that.
We can't escape what we are.
Other people might be
able to, but we can't.
Why can't we?
Why can't we?
You may as well face it, Ellie.
You were born in Boston.
Boston is not just a city.
It's a state of mind.
You can't run away from a state of mind.
You wouldn't be happy.
If you call marrying Howard
running away from it ..
I'll be happy.
Happiness is a very
rare commodity, Ellie.
Especially in New England.
That's why we're so good
at finding substitutes for it.
For example, when I was a young man, I
started a collection of Chinese bronzes.
It might be a good idea if you
were to start some sort of ..
Collection of your own.
Oriental daggers, butter knives.
It doesn't matter.
You great aunt Penelope
collected shaving mugs.
Father, how can you?
Frankly .. I don't know anyone
who likes Chinese bronzes.
But I have one of the finest
collections in the country.
You are overwrought now.
Suppose we talk about it later?
If you like ..
I'll intercede with Buzzy Lauring
to have young Boulder ..
It's too late.
He won't come back. He's too proud.
He's going away and I'll
never see him again.
Hello, Eleanor.
Oh, I'm sorry, cousin George.
My mother said that ..
Oh .. Agnes, my dear.
Tell Mrs Apley that
Miss Willing is here.
Well now, let's ..
Let's see.
What's the matter with Eleanor?
Don't say "nothing at all".
I know better.
She isn't feeling well, Amelia.
No, she certainly isn't.
She came running upstairs, looked at me
and said Freud would like to get at you.
What did she mean by that?
It is much too low in the bosom.
Agnes, my dear.
You look charming.
Thank you, cousin Catherine.
The dress is sweet.
Perhaps just a little piece of tulle.
Margaret can sew it on for you upstairs.
Somehow, it doesn't look very
much like a ball gown, does it?
Well, of course it does, George.
You like all those ..
- Well everyone has them.
Don't you like it at all, cousin George?
Who said I didn't like it, my dear?
I've no doubt we'll all like it very
much once we get accustomed to it.
Accustomed to it?
Oh .. yes.
Now we have something for you.
My grandmother's pearls.
We want you to wear
them tonight, my dear.
Because one day we hope ..
They look lovely on you, Agnes.
Just what you needed.
Splendid. Now, no-one
will notice the dress at all.
I've got to see you, sir.
John, what is the matter?
- I want to speak to father.
Don't you see your mother?
Don't you see Agnes?
I want to see you.
Come along, Agnes.
We'll go up to the sewing room.
Father, I ..
- I know, John.
You've found out your cousin
Horatio has been to Worcester.
And what I want to know is ..
- Not now, John.
I'm not in the mood for any
more of these discussions.
We'll talk about it tomorrow.
But sir ..?
- John.
My father once said this
to me, John. He said ..
I am the only father you will ever have.
And you are the only
son I will ever have.
It is something I have never forgotten.
And you must believe
when I say that what I do ..
I do because I am his son.
And because you are my son.
Yes, sir.
You've been very unkind
to your cousin Agnes lately.
I want you to be particularly
nice to her tonight.
After all.
It's her coming-out party.
We have to go on living, John.
Aren't they sweet, John and Agnes.
You must be very happy, Jane.
I am.
When's he going to ask her?
I should think that would be up to John.
Don't be ridiculous.
It's never up to the young man.
I remember how it was with Roger and me.
We were sitting in the
parlor one evening.
Father came in and said:
"when is the wedding going to be?"
Remember, Roger?
I'm not likely to forget it, my dear.
- Yes?
Do you notice anything?
About me, I mean.
- Well, look.
You've got your hair done
differently. It looks fine.
Yes, but what else?
It's the pearls, John.
It's your great grandmother's pearls.
Don't you see them?
Yes, they look wonderful.
You don't mind having me wear them?
No. Of course not.
Oh, I'm awfully glad, John.
From the way you've been acting lately.
I was afraid you would mind.
I'm awfully glad.
Agnes, there is something
I want to tell you.
Yes, John?
I realize that I have been
rude and thoughtless lately.
Oh you haven't.
- Oh, I know I have.
Well, it's because I've had
a great deal on my mind.
I hope you will understand
and forgive me.
Of course, John.
We've known each other so long.
Ever since we were children.
Since as far back as I remember,
you've always been there.
In fact, sometimes I've wondered if
we don't know each other too well.
Why, I don't see how two people ..
That is a boy and a girl, can
know each other too well if ..
If ..
You ought to say it, John.
Agnes, you don't understand.
I'm not trying to ask you to marry me.
I'm trying to tell you that ..
Well, that there is someone else.
Who is it?
You don't know her.
I hope someday you will.
But Agnes, I know how
you must feel about it.
How long have you
been .. in love with her?
Since I first met her.
Three weeks and four days ago.
Agnes, you are not ..
You don't mind, do you?
No, no. How can I mind, John.
It's ..
It's not your fault.
You couldn't help it.
We can't help falling in love.
Nobody can.
It's Agnes. I think I'd better go ..
- No, no. I'll go.
Agnes, listen to me.
Yes, cousin Cassy.
You mustn't be so upset.
I can't help it.
I'm sorry I made such a fool of myself.
Thank you.
Oh, cousin Cassy.
What am I going to do?
When you are feeling better you
are going back downstairs with me.
Oh no, I couldn't.
- You must.
It won't help to have
people talking about you.
I don't care what they say.
They don't understand. None of them.
Why, they can't.
Even you don't understand.
I think I can.
I think I understand very well.
You do .. cousin Cassy?
You see what you are going
through now isn't so very different.
From what I went through,
albeit a great many years ago.
With your cousin, George.
Cousin George.
Was there ever anybody else with him?
It happened during his
senior year at college.
We weren't exactly engaged,
but there was an understanding.
And then he met this girl.
She was from south Boston.
I saw her once. Quite by accident.
A pretty little thing.
Dark hair and blue eyes
and the softest Irish voice.
Mary Monaghan.
I hated her.
I cried myself to sleep
every night hating her.
And he loved her?
Yes. He loved her.
They were going to be married
and go out west. You see.
She couldn't live on Beacon Street.
And he couldn't live in South Boston.
But what happened?
You are too young to have remembered
your cousin George's father.
Well, George was taken out of
Harvard and sent to Europe.
For his health.
When he returned.
We became engaged.
But didn't he try to see her again?
Oh, no.
When he came back he
realized that it wouldn't work.
He'd made up his own mind about that.
He understood thought he had to choose
between Mary Monaghan .. and Boston.
And George is an Apley.
So the choice wasn't
so difficult after all.
That's why I'm telling you this story.
John is an Apley too.
He is so much like his father sometimes.
When he was a young man.
So much like him that
sometimes it makes me laugh.
And once or twice it's made me cry.
Yes, but suppose John did get over
this and he did come back to me?
Would our marriage be really happy?
Has mine been happy?
I think so, Agnes.
George and I.
Though perhaps we've never
been in love that way ..
But we've had something else.
Sharing the same likes and dislikes.
The same interests and activities.
It's the little things, day by day,
that make a happy marriage.
Do you really think so,
cousin Catherine?
You mustn't lose hope. Ever.
Oh, I won't.
Now we are going back downstairs.
Good evening, Eleanor.
- Good evening.
Good evening.
Good evening, Ellie.
- Good evening, uncle Roger.
I haven't danced for years,
but if you are game, I am.
Oh, I'd love to.
How is your head?
- There is nothing wrong with it.
Is that what father told you?
I liked that young man of
yours even if he did go to Yale.
Do you know what happened?
I heard about it at the club.
Oh uncle Roger, what am I going to do?
I think your poor old uncle
has had enough, Ellie.
My back isn't what it used to be.
Oh, I'm sorry, uncle Roger.
Thank you, anyway.
- Thank you, my dear.
And may I have a dance?
- Of course.
Could I have a word with you, George?
Why of course, Roger.
If you're looking for brandy Roger, that
is not where we keep it in this house.
No, it's where I keep it in this house.
A splendid fellow, Wilson.
What would you say if I said I haven't
drank brandy since my bachelor's dinner?
I'd say you'd better touch one now.
George, I ran into one of your
birdwatchers on my way to the party.
Yes. Did he ..?
- He did.
They didn't elect you, George.
They asked the committee
for another name.
Another name?
Why, Roger?
Because George, they think you have
been making a blasted fool of yourself.
No-one has called me a
blasted fool since father died.
You know George, those birdwatchers
of yours are pretty sound people.
At least, unlike most
societies in Boston ..
They are interested in
something that is alive.
But why did they do it?
That cemetery business for one thing.
Cousin Hattie.
Henry Apley showed your letter around.
Then they say ..
You pushed young Boulder out of his job
because he was seeing too much of Ellie.
Did you?
George, we've been
through it all together.
School and games and
girls and Beacon Street.
I'm not saying this
because I like saying it.
But I wonder if you see yourself
as other people see you.
Sit down, George.
Don't get angry. Sit down.
Horatio said he'd been to Worcester.
What else did he tell you?
Enough, so I can see you're
doing the same thing with John ..
That you did with Eleanor
and cousin Hattie.
Raising objections about
things that don't matter.
Because you live in a
narrow world, George.
My world, narrow?
Yes, the man has an "iron deer" on his
lawn so John can't marry his daughter?
Is that being broadminded, George?
Aren't you losing sight of what John
and Ellie will be throwing away ..
If they make unsuitable marriages?
Well, I won't argue the point with you.
But you're losing sight of
the fact that they are in love.
Who isn't, when he's twenty?
When he is twenty.
Have you forgotten how you felt, George?
The day your father found out.
The last time you saw her.
The night we walked up the gangplank.
I'm not so forgetful as all that, Roger.
I haven't forgotten it, either.
I had to live with you
those six months abroad.
Then you married Catherine.
I've never regretted that, Roger.
No. You shouldn't.
You are very lucky to have Catherine.
But remember when John was born?
Remember what you said to me that day?
You said.
I pray to heaven he'll be happy.
I remember.
Then you and I went out and
entered him for Groton.
He isn't happy now, George.
Neither is Ellie.
Think how they must be feeling.
Forget the iron deer.
And the late Ralph Waldo Emerson.
And what people will say if you miss
a meeting of the Tuesday Club.
Be kind, George.
You always have been
to everyone in trouble.
You have been generous.
You have been understanding.
Have I, Roger?
I've always.
Tried to understand.
Then try to understand
your own children.
Don't you want them to get just a little
more out of life than you've had?
I'm not sure how much one
has a right to expect from life.
It has a strange way of escaping you.
Before you know it, it's ..
Slipped out of your hands.
Perhaps it's because we
haven't stood up to it enough.
It is too late for us.
All that you and I can do
is to hope that others ..
Those we love, do better.
I guess that is all I'm trying to say.
Roger said you were here.
Some of our guests are leaving, George.
Oh yes, my dear. Yes.
- Yes, George?
I've been thinking.
Worcester isn't Boston.
But it is in Massachusetts.
[ Whistling ]
Are you alone, George?
I thought I heard someone whistling.
I can't think who it can have been.
How strange.
Catherine, my dear.
There is something I
should like to read to you.
No, it's not out of a book.
It is something I've just written.
It's a letter to Henry Apley.
About cousin Hattie.
A nice letter?
I hope you'll think so, my dear.
I don't want to go too far because
basically my position was just, but ..
Well this anyway, is
just a rough beginning.
"Dear Henry."
"It's occurred to me in thinking things
over, that we can all die only once."
"As it happens I still have
a little time to consider .."
"Where I wish to be placed in the
family plot. And cousin Hattie hasn't."
"Therefore I suggest that
we both adopt the motto .."
"Let sleeping dogs lie."
"And join our efforts in endeavouring
to activate another little motto."
"Which is peculiarly our own."
"Bring cousin Hattie back."
I think that's rather nicely put.
Don't you, dear?
Well, I see what you mean, George.
- And then I go on ..
"I know that you are in
delicate health, dear Henry."
"And that you will want to .."
"Be near her."
You know, it's a hard letter to write.
Well, perhaps another
way of phrasing it, dear?
The idea is perfect.
- Yes. - But ..
Good morning.
- Good morning, darling.
- Ah, my dear.
Good morning.
Isn't it a beautiful morning?
I suppose it is a beautiful morning as
that young man of yours is coming round?
Yes. He is to spend the whole day.
We are going to Faneuil
Hall market to have lunch.
That place where all the butchers go.
Butchers? Why ..
- How nice, George.
Oh yes, yes. Capital.
Well, what's that for?
Nothing. Just a reflex.
So that's what a reflex is.
I'm done, Margaret.
- Alright.
I thought you were in
Worcester seeing Mr Dole.
Well, I'm going as soon as
I've finished my breakfast.
Good old Johnny. Wouldn't dream to ask
for a maiden's hand on an empty stomach.
Are you scared?
Scared of what?
- Mr Dole.
Well, I am a little.
But not really.
After all, the alliance will have
certain advantages for the Dole family.
What do you mean .. Hmm?
Nothing. Just hmm.
Thank you, Margaret.
John, where are you going
to live, you and Myrtle?
Why, here.
In this house?
We'll have a house
of our own, of course.
I mean, here in Boston.
Not me. When Howard
finds another position.
He'll come back here for the wedding.
We'll live somewhere else.
Maybe even New York is too close.
I'll make him take a job in Chicago ..
Missouri or Texas.
We might even go to southern California.
I believe they have a university there.
Well .. isn't that
verging on the radical?
I wonder if you are going to
enjoy being married to Myrtle.
Eleanor. I don't understand you at all.
I didn't expect you would.
Isn't it wonderful to
see Eleanor so happy.
Yes, and John too.
Yes, John too.
- Thank you, my dear.
Of course, I can't help
feeling sorry for Agnes.
When the emotions are involved my dear,
someone is bound to become frustrated.
This one?
Speaking of emotions.
Last night, I kept thinking
about that book of Eleanor's.
By the man with the queer name.
It began with an "F".
Oh you mean .. "Freud"?
Yes, that's the name.
Well, I thought it only right.
That as long as Eleanor
is so interested, that ..
I ought to know something about it, but
I couldn't find it anywhere in her room.
Well ..
As a matter of fact, after what
she said about the book.
I thought perhaps I'd
better glance at it myself.
Just to check up of course.
And, let me see.
I think perhaps I dropped it ..
Back here somewhere. Ah.
You know, it is really very
interesting if you face it tolerantly.
It advances a theory that
frankly never occurred to me.
What's it about?
Well, it's about the mind.
And the human relationships
that affect the mind.
What sort of relationships?
I hardly know how to put it, Catherine.
Well, if Eleanor has been reading it.
Then I shall have to resort to a word
I have never used in your presence.
It seems to be very
largely a book about ..
But how can you write
a whole book about ..
Doctor Freud does seem to
pad it a little here and there.
For instance he tells this
story of a certain "Mr X".
It seems that this Mr X when
he was four years old ..
Had an experience with his nurse
that colored his entire life.
Now, I remember my own nurse very well.
She was Margaret's sister.
And I know that neither of us forgot
ourselves, even for a moment.
Yes, but what happened
between Mr X and his nurse?
Well, that's what is so confusing.
Nothing at all definite did happen.
But ever after that he always
dreamed of locomotives.
The other night I had a strange dream.
Yes. Perhaps you'd better not talk about
it until you look this over, Catherine.
It seems to be Dr Freud's
idea that emotion .. that is ..
Very largely governs
the lives of people.
In other parts of the country.
Well, there is no reason
to hide the book, George.
No. I'll put it on the shelf downstairs.
Next to Emerson.
Come to think of it, Catherine.
They've more than a little in common.
Doctor Freud is trying to do
the same thing with sex ..
That Emerson did without it.
George .. where are you?
Oh, there you are.
Is this true what I hear?
John is going to marry the daughter
of a mechanic from Dorchester?
Who told you that?
- My dear, it's all over Boston.
Her father collects old
iron in his front yard.
Now really, Amelia.
Don't attempt to deny it.
I know it's true.
Why else should you be
conspiring in the bedroom?
I'm going up to the attic.
- Now, Amelia.
Let her go, George.
Mr Willing, sir.
- Oh dear.
Tell him we're not at home, Wilson.
- No, Catherine.
I want to see Horatio.
I've a bone to pick with him.
- Yes, George?
Have you heard of a man named "Freud"?
- Why, no.
It's occurred to me that it is probably
you he's writing this whole book about.
You've always exerted a very
bad influence on me, Horatio.
And if I may say,
an unhealthy influence.
Unhealthy? Why George,
I've followed you as ..
Boswell did Johnson.
- Yes. We won't go into that.
What really matters is that you've
interfered between me and my son.
But how, George? What did I do?
You went snooping up
to Worcester. You did.
Bringing back all kinds of stories.
George, you asked me to go to
Worcester. Don't you remember?
Yes, we won't split hairs, Horatio.
Thank heavens your
intrigues were unsuccessful.
John is going to marry Myrtle Dole.
Myrtle Dole?
What about Agnes?
Agnes is a nice girl, Horatio.
She has inherited a certain charm.
From her mother.
But John is not in love with Agnes.
But George, I've often heard you
say that love is largely nonsense.
I'm speaking of love.
Real love, Horatio.
Something I don't believe you have ever
known in your sterile, pedestrian life.
Yes, George. Well, I'd
better go and talk to Agnes.
I think she'll be very ..
Why, it's Mr Willing, isn't it?
- No.
Come in, Mr Boulder.
It's that telephone, Mr Apley.
A long distance call.
Now, who would I know at long distance?
They said it was Worcester.
I will take it.
Yes, I'll wait.
Yes. This is Mr Apley.
I do wish she wouldn't
keep saying "hello".
After all, I don't even
know the young woman.
I think the New England
telephone company will ..
Yes, this is Mr Apley.
Mr Dole.
How do you do.
No. I said "how do you do".
Oh, I can hear you. Do you want me
to speak louder? How do you do?
He heard me.
Yes. John is on his way over.
So am I. Delighted.
By all means.
No, no my dear fellow. You
must have luncheon with me.
At my club then.
That's the Berkeley Club.
Where is it?
Why, it's just around the corner. Here.
No, no. This is Beacon Street.
The club is on Fairfield Street.
No, no. Fairfield.
"F" as in .. as in Freud.
One o'clock tomorrow
at the Berkeley Club.
One o'clock tomorrow.
That was Mr Dole.
He is lunching with me tomorrow at
one o'clock at The Berkeley Club.
Oh, how splendid, George.
We lunch in the main dining room.
Where we'll be sure to be seen.
The sooner we begin to be seen together
the better. To help prepare our friends.
Yes, George.
- Where is Eleanor?
I think they went into the conservatory.
They probably want to be alone, George.
I suppose it's alright,
this early in the morning.
I'm sure it is.
- Well.
Yes. The main dining-room.
I'll take over some of father's Madeira.
Not the civil war, the Mexican war.
No. Since Mr Dole is from ..
Out of town, he'd probably
want a Martini cocktail.
You didn't know, I used to be quite
famous for my Martini cocktails.
No, I didn't George.
There's a lot of things about
me you don't know, Catherine.
The whole trick is in
chilling the glass first.
And then resting it for five minutes ..
In a bowl of finely pulverized ice.
Lift them out carefully.
Carefully, carefully.
Or you'll break them.
Mr Julian Dole is here to see you, sir.
- Oh capital, capital.
You may poor the Martini
cocktails, Charles. - Yes, sir.
Mr Dole?
Mr Apley.
I hope I'm not late.
- My dear fellow. On the contrary.
Well, this is quite an occasion.
Mr Dole - Mr Newcombe.
My brother-in-law.
How do you do, Mr Dole.
- Very glad to know you, I'm sure.
Will you join me in a Martini cocktail?
Well if it's all the same to you,
I'd prefer some sherry.
Sherry? Oh, of course.
Charles, will you bring some
sherry into the main lounge?
Yes, Mr Apley.
Will you join us after luncheon, Roger?
- Yes.
The way, Mr Dole.
You may leave those, Charles.
On the sound New England
principle of waste not .. want not.
Yes, sir.
And this is the main lounge.
Say, that's a fine Gilbert
Stuart you have there.
Yes. Yes, it is a Stuart.
Frankly, I never cared
much for his portraits.
Too saccharine. Prefer Copley.
He painted what he saw.
This happens to be my great
grandfather, Moses Apley.
That's exactly my point.
Only Gilbert Stuart could
make a dancing master ..
Out of a two-fisted old
pirate like Moses Apley.
Did you say "pirate", Mr Dole?
Oh, I don't mean it literally of course.
But after all, when a man could
trade rum for slaves in Africa ..
Slaves for molasses in Jamaica ..
And bring back that molasses to
Boston to be made into more rum.
So he could start in all over again.
That's what I call a go-getter.
A go-getter?
Yes. I don't believe I've
heard the expression.
You don't play poker?
- No.
Well a go-getter is just the
opposite of a standpatter.
Now .. meaning no
offence of course, Mr Apley.
But I'd size you up as a standpatter.
You play them exactly
as they were dealt you.
Yes. Yes, indeed.
Oh, I believe I have your chair, George.
Mr Willing - Mr Dole.
Mr Dole.
- Very glad to know you, Mr Willing.
How do you do?
You see, Mr Apley. You see what I mean?
Someone dealt you that chair,
probably before you were born.
You've been playing it ever since.
Yes. I see what you mean.
It's an interesting theory.
I .. oh ..
Thank you.
- Your good health.
Happy days.
A cigar.
No. No thanks. I never use them.
Perhaps you'd like to try a cigarette?
- I'm afraid I ..
Well, perhaps.
First of all, Mr Dole.
I want you to know that we're delighted.
Perfectly delighted.
My son has spoken to you of course?
- Yes. Yes.
John and I had a nice little visit.
Of course, I had seen him before.
Well, he was just another
boy around the house.
For the last two years the
house has been full of boys.
Have to brush them off
the porch every night.
To tell you the truth, I had no idea
of all this myself until last week.
I don't know what your ideas may be.
Yours and Mrs Dole's. And I hope
you won't mind me suggesting this.
But I thought perhaps
it might be better.
If the announcement of the engagement
were to be made in Boston.
Rather than in Worcester.
Well, isn't it customary
for the bride's parents ..
Oh yes, yes. Of course.
I was just thinking of the simplest
way to explain matters here.
I thought if you and Mrs Dole can go so
far as to take an apartment in Boston.
And then if the announcement
would be made from there.
I honestly see no reason why Worcester
should be brought into it at all.
I see.
Tell me, Mr Dole.
You weren't born in Worcester?
No, no.
I moved there ten years ago when
I bought the tool and die works.
Oh yes. The tool and die works.
Where did you come from?
- Kansas City.
- Missouri.
I see.
Mr Apley.
You didn't explain the advantages of ..
Mrs Dole and myself taking
an apartment in Boston.
Well for one thing, before any
definite announcement were made.
It would help for us to be seen together
here and there. By way of preparation.
For instance, I don't think
it would be difficult ..
To get you a six month
membership here at the club.
And then I'm not sure, but it might
just be possible form Mrs Dole ..
To be invited for several weeks
to my wife's sewing circle.
And naturally, there are
the receptions and teas.
And a series of small dinners.
- Small dinners?
Exactly. We must be careful.
To have everyone prepared
for the engagement ..
Before it is actually announced.
I think it can be done.
Of course it isn't usual,
but I think it can be done.
Well, it certainly sounds
interesting, Mr Apley.
It's really a shame to have
to pass up the opportunity.
How's that?
This is going to surprise you, Mr Apley.
But I don't think it will work.
What is that, sir?
You've never met my daughter, have you.
- Well, Myrtle is ..
She is not the sewing-circle type,
if you know what I mean.
To be perfectly frank with you I don't
think she'd be happy in Boston.
From what I've seen of your son I
don't think he'd be happy out of it.
A nice boy, John.
And I don't doubt his affection
for my daughter but ..
Well let me put it this way.
Twenty years from now,
I don't think I could stand ..
Having a son-in-law quite
as impressive as you are.
Are you .. serious about this, Mr Dole?
Dead serious, Mr Apley.
You must see what I mean.
I felt it when I talked to John and
again when I walked into this club.
It's ..
It is a question of
environment isn't it?
Of manners .. points of view.
One's whole approach to life.
How would you feel if you
had to live in Kansas City?
I must confess I have never
considered such a possibility.
Of course you hadn't.
No more than Myrtle really considered
the possibility of living in Boston.
Come now, Mr Apley.
You know I'm right, don't you.
Don't you?
You have done me a great favor, Mr Dole.
You have reminded me of something
I never should have forgotten.
Then we're agreed.
I am very grateful to you.
I wasn't thinking on a straight line.
But you've set me back
upon the right track.
Thank you.
Good for you.
Well, it seems rather pointless going
through with the luncheon, doesn't it.
I'll run along.
I've enjoyed meeting you and I mean it.
There is just one thing.
John is not likely to agree with us.
He and your daughter might
try to do something foolish.
You're right.
There is just time.
I can catch the 1:45 to Worcester.
Myrtle will be on the train
for California this evening.
She has an aunt out there. She'll
stay a year, two years if necessary.
Well goodbye, Mr Apley.
It's been a real pleasure.
And I'm sorry things didn't
turn out differently.
Goodbye, Mr Dole.
I owe you an apology, Horatio.
Why, George.
I've just been taught a lesson.
It is my fault. I had to learn it from
a man who is not .. one of us.
From Mr Dole, George?
I tried my best to do what
others thought was right.
No-one can say I didn't try.
- I'm sure you must have, George.
Environment, points of view.
One's approach to life.
I dismissed them, Horatio.
I ignored them as if they didn't exist.
Fortunately, it is not too late.
I can still do what I think.
What I know to be right.
John shall marry Agnes.
Really, George?
- We will arrange the wedding for June.
And Eleanor must be put
Howard Boulder out of her mind.
I shall send her abroad.
Yes. For confused thinking,
there is nothing like a sea voyage.
Now let me see. Catherine
will be busy with John's wedding.
Perhaps Amelia could
take Eleanor abroad?
That is if Roger could spare
her for six months or so?
I'm quite sure he could.
Then that's the way it will be.
Each to his kind.
Each to his kind, Horatio.
- Catherine.
Oh, we've missed you so.
- Hello.
Good to have you back with us, Ellie.
- Thank you, father.
You must tell us all about your
trip. We are longing to hear.
There isn't much to tell.
We saw the Vatican and
the Uffizi and the Louvre.
And the British Museum.
We spent a great deal of
time at the British Museum.
In London, we stayed at
Garlands Hotel, of course.
On the very first day
we must have run into ..
At least six Boston people
who were staying there too.
How wonderful, Amelia.
- Yes.
It was just as though we
had never left Boston at all.
Travel is so broadening, I always say.
I ..
I don't suppose there
are any letters for me?
No, dear.
Are you sure?
Yes, I forwarded everything
to Europe just as you said.
I see .. thank you, mother.
Well, I'm a little tired now.
I think I'll go to my room.
And thank you aunt Amelia.
I had a wonderful time.
Really, I did.
A pleasure, my dear.
Well, come along Roger.
I want to go home.
I expect to find everything
in a state of confusion.
Well, if it isn't, it will be.
Goodbye, George.
Glad you're home, Amelia.
Strange about those letters, George.
Didn't that young
fellow try to write her?
Well, as a matter of fact he did.
I thought it advisable to return them.
Unopened, of course.
With a covering letter explaining
things tactfully from our point of view.
Yes, I know your
tactful letters, George.
In any case, it is all water
over the dam, Roger.
Eleanor has quite forgotten
Mr Boulder by now.
Yes. That is why she is so happy.
- Coming.
My dear.
Goodbye, George.
Hello Agnes.
Mother said you were coming over.
Oh, I'm glad you're back.
I wouldn't miss your
wedding for anything.
You .. you must be very happy, Agnes.
Oh .. I am.
How is John?
He's fine.
Of course, he's been very
busy with examinations.
So he hasn't been in much.
I'll have to sew this ruffle,
Miss Willing. - Oh.
Oh, alright, Mrs Ruddock.
Isn't that ..
Your great grandmother's wedding dress?
I thought I recognised it.
It looks wonderful on you.
Do you really think so?
It looks awful.
Oh, Ellie.
I've been wondering if we should
go through with this wedding.
But of course you must.
And have him hate me
for the rest of his life?
You will make him a perfect wife.
- Looking like this?
There is nothing wrong
with your looks, Agnes.
John seems to think so.
- John is an idiot.
You would be lovely if you
had some nice clothes.
That's what cousin Catherine said.
And she's talked your father into
taking me to buy some in New York.
Father .. in New York?
If you think .. clothes
will make any difference.
Of course they will. But not if you
let father choose them. You do it.
Including a new wedding dress.
This is his grandmother's dress.
Won't his feeling be hurt?
He's not getting married in it. You are.
You've got to fight, Agnes.
It's always a mistake not to fight.
Perhaps if I'd fought hard enough, I ..
I know, Ellie.
Oh, I am so sorry.
Remember, Agnes.
I had no idea New York was so big.
Oh yes. It's big.
Ah, here we are.
Now remember. We mustn't
tell them where we're from.
We don't want to appear to be boasting.
No, cousin George.
- Certainement.
What can I do for you, Monsieur?
- Well ..
We thought we would .. that is ..
We'd like to see some evening dresses.
This way, Monsieur.
Oh, it's beautiful.
You like it, my dear?
I've always dreamed of
having a dress like that.
That would suit mademoiselle very well.
I think we should start with
something a little less radical.
Oh please, cousin George.
Well ..
Perhaps with a little tulle?
- No.
No tulle.
- No tulle, Agnes?
That's been the trouble with
me all my life. Too much tulle.
From now on it's going to be different.
We'll take it just as it is.
And I want to see some more dresses.
I want to see a great many more.
- Yes. Yes, mademoiselle.
Agnes, I don't know what
has come over you.
It's this, cousin George.
If John has got to marry to me at
least he needn't be ashamed of me.
Perhaps I can change the inside.
I'll have to see about that.
But I can change the outside.
I can give him at least
part of what he's entitled to.
I can give him an attractive wife.
Well, my dear.
If you think it is so important.
There will probably be no harm in ..
Well, it can't hurt us
to look at some, can it.
Oh, cousin George!
We are quite ready to see
anything you have to show us.
Yes, Monsieur.
Well, I hope we did the right thing.
- Of course we did, cousin George.
I don't know what you're
aunt Amelia will say.
Next week I'll be a married woman.
No matter what my aunt Amelia says.
Now, suppose we go back
to the hotel and change.
And then have a little
dinner at Delmonico's.
It's quite gay you know.
I think I might even call on
my old classmate Mike Walker.
He married an actress.
A real actress, cousin George?
Well she was, I believe, what
is called a Floradora girl.
I can see no objection to asking them to
join us at dinner. Especially New York.
Yes. I think we might paint
the town just a little red tonight.
Well look who is here. Mr George Apley.
And Miss Willing.
How do you do, Mr Apley?
Let me present my friends.
Mr Kelly. Mr Leach. Mr Goldsmith.
How do you do.
- All from Yale, Mr Apley.
Boola boola boys.
Say, have I ever told you
gentlemen about Mr Apley?
You've all heard of Boston haven't you?
The hub of the universe.
Mr Apley is the gentleman who spins
the hub and makes the wheel go round.
Mr Apley caught the sacred codfish
and hung them in the State house.
Mr Apley invented baked
beans for breakfast.
It is Mr Apley who won't
allow his fellow citizens ..
To see your play or read your
novel or admire your painting.
It's Mr Apley who kicks you
off your lecture platform.
While you try to pump vitality into the
carcass of the late Ralph Waldo Emerson.
It is Mr Apley who has turned the Boston
apartment at Thurrock and Garrison ..
Into a provincial village that even
Cotton Mather would consider medieval.
You stop that!
You have no right to
talk to him like that.
I'm sorry, Miss Willing.
Perhaps I haven't.
I beg your pardon.
Are you going to call
Mr Walker, cousin George?
No, my dear. I think we'll
dine here at the hotel.
Cousin George, you know why, don't you.
I know it's none of my business.
But he couldn't have meant
any of those things he said.
He wouldn't have said them
at all if he hadn't been hurt.
Hurt, my dear?
It is terrible to love someone.
To have something stand in the way.
It is the most terrible
thing in the world.
Please try to understand.
I know how I felt about John.
Well, that's the way Mr Boulder feels.
That's why he was so rude and awful.
It's the way Eleanor
feels, cousin George.
I suppose it's the way John felt
when Myrtle's father sent her away.
It's the way you must have felt when
your father made you go abroad.
Cousin Catherine told me all about it.
How long have you and Catherine
been discussing me behind my back?
Oh, it wasn't anything like that.
She was only trying to help me.
I wish I could understand.
But you can, cousin George.
If you would only do
what you know is right.
You can be so wonderful.
Like this afternoon when
we bought the dresses.
And then, other times, you ..
You are not yourself.
Not myself, Agnes?
It's as if half the time
you are trying to be ..
Someone else.
Someone that isn't you at all.
Good heavens. Is everyone
in Boston here today?
Next to a good funeral, there is nothing
a Bostonian likes better than a wedding.
Ellie, dear.
Hello, Sarah.
But you are looking so well, my dear.
That is, we haven't seen
anything of you for so long.
I've been to Europe, you know.
Yes, we heard.
Isn't this all exciting? John and Agnes.
Who would have dreamed he would
have been getting married before you.
You don't suppose Agnes
has backed out, do you?
Thirty years ago when I married
your aunt Amelia in this church ..
The very same possibility
occurred to me.
But she didn't.
- No, she didn't.
They don't.
I wonder what father and Agnes were
doing in New York all this past week.
I'm sure I haven't the faintest idea.
- I know. It is all so mysterious.
They only got back this morning.
I haven't even seen Agnes.
Well, you'll see a great deal
of her from now on, my boy.
Marriage is a very serious step.
Isn't it, sir?
The great thing about marriage my
boy, is not to think too much about it.
Yes, sir.
Well, I see you got here alright.
Yes, my dear.
When you come back
from Europe next fall ..
Why don't you come down to my shooting
camp at Dover for a week or two?
Well, thank you, sir. But I'm
not very fond of shooting.
Neither was I.
Before I got married.
Ellie my dear, will you
come with me for a minute.
Of course, father.
Oh, Howard.
Oh I'm sorry, father.
I couldn't help it.
I know my dear, a reflex.
Now, you've two hours to pack and catch
the steamer. The Captain can marry you.
- He knows all about it.
But these are John and Agnes's tickets.
Where will they go?
They can go to the Farragut House at
Rye Beach just as your mother and I did.
Come along, darling.
Mr Apley, when you
called me in New York ..
I didn't get a chance to
apologise for the things I said.
Nonsense, my boy.
You were perfectly right.
Especially when you called
Boston the hub of the universe.
Now you must hurry. Run along, quick.
Goodbye, father.
- Goodbye.
Oh, George.
Why didn't you tell me?
- To tell you the truth, Catherine ..
I was afraid to confide in anyone
for fear I should talk myself out of it.
You know.
I've noticed lately that I've a tendency
to try and by someone other than myself.
A most deplorable tendency.
Emerson opposed it all his life.
Be yourself, he said, and
the world is your oyster.
You know, in his way ..
Emerson was something of a radical.
Yes, George.
George, there is something
I must show you.
What is it, Horatio?
- Look for yourself.
Catherine. Look.
That is Henry Apley in our pew.
I can see.
- But who put him there?
He doesn't belong in our pew.
He belongs several pews back.
Yes, I know, but ..
But this is outrageous.
I insist that he move back.
Emerson ..
- What?
Emerson, George.
I wish you'd learn to mind
your own business, Horatio.
- What is it, Jane?
They are ready.
Ready for what?
- 0h, yes. Of course.
How do you do, Henry.
I'm glad I ran into you, Henry.
I happened to be out at
Mount Auburn last week.
I think I've found just the
place for cousin Hattie.
Dearly beloved.
We are gathered together
here in the sight of God.
And in the face of this company.
To join together this
man and this woman ..
In Holy matrimony.