Vendetta (1999) Movie Script

(loud chattering)
You ain't nothing
but trash, every one of ya!
Man #2: Filthy animals!
You wop bastards
are gonna die!
Man #3:
You better get on the boat!
Man #4:
You ain't
nothing but trash!
Man #5: Dago bastards!
Greasy wops!
Man #6:
Guinea bastards,
we don't need your kind!
Wanna see you
smacked down, boy!
Man #7:
Damn wops! Send 'em all
back where they belong!
Man #8:
These Italians
rarely acquire homes,
always band together,
do not acquire
our language,
and have neither respect
for its government,
or obedience
to its laws.
Man #9:
They are filthy in
their persons and homes.
They are without
courage, honor,
truth, pride, religion,
or any quality that goes
to make the good citizen.
Man #10:
These Italian
societies must perish.
Man #11:
I intend to put an end
to these infernal
dago disturbances
even if it
proves necessary
to wipe every one of them
from the face of the earth.
I was 15-years-old
when my father brought
us to America.
New Orleans.
(crowd shouting in Italian)
In Sicily, there was famine.
In America
we were promised work.
You! Hey, dago!
Get over here!
(speaking Italian)

Come on, I want some
big men over here!
You! Hey, dago,
get over here.
Come on!
Get in the wagon.
(speaking Italian)
Come on, you
garlic eaters!
You won't do no
better than this.
Come on boy, get up!
You, come on,
get up in the wagon.
Come on, a strong man.
You, get up here, yeah!
Everything all right
Mr. Macheca?
Oh, everything
is fine, Chief.
That was the only time
I ever saw David Hennessy,
chief of police.
And I saw Joseph Macheca,
who ran the docks.
But him,
I would see again.
Marchesi! Marchesi!
Famiglia Marchesi!
(speaking Italian)
(bells chiming)
French market...
French market.
French market?
French market.
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian throughout)
(speaking Italian)
Bagnetto explained
the dangerous situation
to my father.
The French market was run
by the Mantrangas.
But the Provenzanos,
they worked the docks.
He told us of
a vendetta between them,
but explained that this
was never spoken of
in Decatur Street.
(speaking Italian)
I buy vegetable.
You sell?
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(horses galloping)
On that same day,
Chief Hennessy
and Mayor Joe Shakspeare
had been invited
to a private luncheon
at the home of biggest
cotton exporter
in New Orleans,
James Houston.
This whole dago thing
is gettin' out of hand.
There must be 30,000
filthy itais
in New Orleans today.
You can walk blocks without
seeing a white face.
He means
to say,
we're concerned
about the future.
They move here,
live 10 to a room
on Decatur Street,
multiply like rabbits,
and what do you get?
You get disease,
you get crime,
and, we're afraid
crime's gonna spread.
We brought them here
to replace the negroes
after the emancipation.
It's goin' on
30 years now,
it ain't working
like it was supposed to.
Well, don't forget us micks.
We slipped in after
the niggers
and before the dagos.
We got a dago,
Joseph "Macheeca,"
the docks.
The gateway
to the city,
vital to our
The docks are well run.
We have it on
good authority
that Mr. "Macheeca"
is the head of...
an Italian criminal
the Mafia?
They say he controls
the Provenzano
and Mantranga families.
I know all about the Mafia,
Mr. Parkerson.
The Mafia's
threatened my life
on more than
one occasion.
Mr. Macheca
is no part of the Mafia.
We want you
to shut him down.
On what evidence?
Evidence, Mr. Mayor?
I see.
when you have evidence
of Mr. Macheca's
criminal activity,
I will be happy
to listen.
Thank you, sir.
(clock chimes)
Do you suppose "Macheeca"
is payin' him off?
We could pay him more.
He's not gonna help.
So, I say to your
father, "Giovanni",
"why do we keep living
in Decatur Street?"
"As long as we live there,
people will think
we're dagos."
You know
what he tells me?
(speaking Italian)
"you got to know
who you are, Vincenzo."
(horse neighing)
pull this up.
Javier, help them!
Vincent Provenzano.
Mr. Houston.
it seems to me,
you're the man who make
"Macheeca's" business work.
Mr. Macheca works hard,
Mr. Houston.
You unload the fruit,
"Macheeca" makes money.
Mantranga sends his boys
to buy the fruit
from the warehouse,
raise the price,
sells it in the market.
He makes money,
what do you get?
These your brothers?
What do your
brothers get?
What are you trying
to tell me, Mr. Houston?
If I owned
"Macheeca's" business,
you know what
I'd say to you?
Make it more expensive
for Mr. Mantranga.
Make him pay a tax for
the privilege of buying fruit.
Then I'd say to you,
"Vincent, keep that money,"
"you deserve it."
It was nice talking
to you, Mr. Houston.
I've considered speaking
with your brother, Giovanni,
but I was told that
you are the Provenzano
with ambition,
am I right?
Yes, you're right.
I'm considering buying
"Macheeca's" business,
but, I don't think
he's gonna sell these docks,
docks that run so well.
And when I buy,
I hope we can do
business together.
Yeah, together.
You want fruit,
you pay for the privilege.
I pay for fruit,
not privilege.
What, you stupid?
You want fruit,
you pay!
All right, come on,
who's next, huh?
(grunting throughout)
Go back to Sicily,
you dumb potero!
(crowd shouting in Italian)
Come on!
You want some?
Come on!
(grunting continues)
Had enough, huh?
You want fruit, huh?
You want it?!
(crowd shouting in Italian)
Let go of me!
What's going on?
(foreman shouting in Italian)
Mr. Macheca,
this boy,
he tries to steal
the fruit.
And Tony stopped him.
(speaking Italian)
It's true, like
uncle Vincenzo said, Papa.
He's a thief,
he's lying.
I no thief.
Get out of here.
Get out of here!
Tell your brothers
and your son,
I won't tolerate
Now get these men
back to work!
(shouting in Italian)
(speaking Italian)

No, no, no...
(speaking Italian)
Sure, I don't understand
the words.
(speaking Italian)
This one, wish,
to go home with you.
Thank you.
He wish to know
the name of signorina
who take him.
What happened
to your eye?
he's dangerous.
Come along, Megan.
We're late.
(Mantranga speaking Italian)
Oh, Don Mantranga.
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
This you boy?
Gaspare, huh?
You, uh, make a name
for yourself, huh?
Ah, the Provenzanos
take advantage.
You have guts
to stand up to them.
You want to do some
work for me, huh?
Mr. "Macheeca."
Forgive me,
barging in.
To what do I owe
the pleasure,
Mr. Houston?
I'm thinking it must be such
a drain on your energy,
keeping an eye on all
these shiftless dagos.
Such a waste
of your time.
I appreciate
your concern, Signore.
Now, when I have
labor problems
that frustrate me,
some mornings
I wake up,
I wanna sell the business,
right there and then.
Be done with it.
I never think of
selling my business,
at any
time of day.
Don't be hasty.
You might want to consider
what I have to propose.
What do you
A partnership,
you and me.
A partnership?
You deal
with the docks,
I import the fruit.
Take a whole load
off your shoulders.
In exchange for?
Think of it, an Italian
in business with me.
Make this whole town
sit up, take notice.
Set an example.
You'd make a
name for yourself.
Not just on the docks.
Everywhere you go,
people would say,
"There goes
Joseph Macheca."
In exchange for?
Naturally, I'd expect
to turn a profit
on my investment,
say, 50 percent.
Thank you
for coming, Signore.
It's good to know
of your interest in
shiftless dagos.
Now, hold on.
Oh, I intend to,
with both hands.
Don't do something
you might regret, sir.
Are you
threatening me, Signore?
Threatening you?
Goddamn right.
For Chrissake,
listen to what
I'm offering.
I understand precisely
what you offer.
To strip me of
my business for pennies,
and to take it by force
if I refuse.
Don't let me take any more
of your valuable time.
You know,
you and I,
don't get along.
So it would appear.
Which one
you like?
Uh... I like those ones.
Don't you?
Uh, si, yes.
Those I choose
if I am...
which I no am.
You make me laugh.
Is good or is bad?
It's good.
I told you...
(piano playing)
(indistinct chattering)
I have a problem.
Our people would like
to shut down my docks.
So I have to bring in
Charles Mantranga
to provide
the workers.
And this would make
the Provenzanos unhappy.
I can't
afford trouble.
Well, there
won't be any.
Us foreigners have
to stick together.
(loud indistinct chattering)
I ain't much of a gardener,
but you said you'd buy 'em.
Grazie, you
grow me more?
Nah, nah, I got me job
digging a canal.
It ain't too bad.
I suppose
I'll work there
until some dago says
he'll do it cheaper
or I die
of yellow fever.
Or, I might head north,
like every other nigger
I know.
Oh, uh...
Thanks, little man.
(speaking Italian)
My name...
My name's Samuel.
At the docks!
(shouting in Italian)
Mantranga needs us.
(punching and grunting)
(shouting in Italian)
(men shouting in Italian)
(whistles blowing)
Stay out
of it, Chief.
You might get hurt.
(grunting throughout)
(shouting in Italian)
If there's
any more trouble,
I'll break
both your legs
and put you on a boat
back to Sicily!
You still don't see
a problem, Chief?
Can't have the docks
held hostage by dagos.
The white race
is already under attack
by a veritable army
of wogs.
Perhaps there's someone
who wants to
disrupt those docks,
Mr. Parkerson.
That ever cross
your mind?
Someone who'd like
to own those docks?
We have got to
keep public order.
I want
"Macheeca" arrested.
On what charge?
Trying to keep
his business open?!
Do you like
dagos, Chief?
Anything happens
to Joseph Macheca,
you'll be
my first stop.
As mayor, I ask you
to uphold the law.
If you can't...
Or won't.
I will find
someone who will.
Jesus, David,
I appointed you.
We're old friends.
I know we are, Joe.
That doesn't mean
you can fire me.
Metropolitan police answer
to state of Louisiana,
as you're
well aware.
You're an arrogant
son-of-a-gun, ain't ya?
Yes, I am.
I've earned the right.
I have a reputation as
a lawman in this state
that's unrivaled.
There's not a soul
in this city believes that
David Hennessy
is a guinea lover.
Well, you've given me
an idea.
Perhaps I'll go after
your job, Mr. Mayor.
Good day, gentlemen.
He's awful slow
to get the point.
He's Irish.
He's popular,
don't let us forget it.
The man on the street
thinks of Hennessy
as a knight
in shining armor.
If he does get it
into his head
to run against me
next year,
I won't stand
a Chinaman's chance.
On the other hand,
there's lot of folks
who can't stand him.
Hold on!
(men shouting)
Go on, tear him up, boy!
(dogs growling and whimpering)
Mr. Houston.
You've done well,
my son.
It's a good beginning.
Thank you,
Mr. Houston.
But, only
a beginning.
Are you in for
the long haul?
The stakes are
very high.
Most dogs will submit
to the strongest dog.
Roll over on their back,
belly exposed.
It's a gesture
of surrender.
These dogs, both,
willing to
put it to the test,
they fight
to the finish.
It's amazing.
(dogs growling and whimpering)
Self confidence.
you have to teach
them to kill.
(dogs snarling)
(pained whimpering)
(growling continues)
You follow me?
I follow you.
(dog whining)

(doorbell ringing)
You gotta put
your lips together
like you're gonna
kiss a girl.
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(whistling continues)
You want a ride?
Get in here!
(men laughing)
Gaspare, you still fight?
(speaking Italian)
Put up your dukes.
You're gonna be the next
John L. Sullivan.
(speaking Italian)
Down, down, down!
(men shouting)
(woman screaming)
Shut up!
Shut her up!
(screaming continues)
The Mantrangas
were ambushed tonight.
Those two apes, your brothers,
were the gunman.
Come back here!
(clubs thudding)
(man shouting in Italian)
These have
just been fired.
I can smell it.
Wait for me
in the other room.
You boys always sleep
with your shoes on?
Arrest them.
All right,
come along.
You're making
a big mistake.
Just count yourself lucky
nobody in that wagon died.
Pardon the
intrusion, missus.
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(throat clearing)
Uh, vegetables...
Um... thank you.
"please meet me tonight"
"at Clay statue..."
Go on, go on!
"10:00 o'clock."
Why so late?
Hey, her parents will
be in bed, you know?
(speaking Italian)
(speaking Italian)
(floorboard creaking)
William Villere.
Oh, would you
look at that uniform.
About the only reason to join
the Boylan protective police.
I saw your lights.
You workin' on
the Provenzano business?
Ain't much of
a case, is it?
One dago's word
against another's.
The jury will decide.
Hell, I'd love
to be on that jury.
A quick way
of making a buck.
Tell you what,
let's get some oysters
on the way home,
I'll walk you.
I'm going with
Sheriff Villere.
He'll look after me.
Okay, chief.
Won't you, Bill?
(speaking Italian)

(speaking Italian)
Oh, can you see
In this, you
must be joking.
Listen, Billy.
When you're ready
to leave Boylan
and join the real
police force,
you let me know.
You must be dog tired of
havin' to step and fetch it
for Mayor
Joe Shakspeare.
Here we are.
Thanks for
walking me, lad.
You get yourself
home safe, now.
'Night, Chief.
(steamboat whistle howling)
(rhythmic whistling)
(guns cocking)
Who did it?
Did you see?
That's what
the chief told me.
We're looking
after you, David.
(speaking Latin)
(indistinct shouting)

After him!

(shouting in Italian)

(bell chiming throughout)
No, no, no, no!
(indistinct chattering)
All prisoners to remain
in the holding pen
until they've
been booked
by the arresting officer.
I demand Italian consul!
(chattering continues)
I didn't see nothing.
I swear on my
mother's grave.
What were you
running for?
To get away from the
shootin', that's all.
I'm walking.
The fog's thick
like pea soup,
I hear guns.
Now, I don't know
if somebody's robbin'
somebody or what,
but I know better
than to be around
something like that.
I got a big
problem, Samuel.
I got a dead hero
who happens to be
the police chief.
And I got a nigger running
from the scene of the crime.
Now, he lives
across the street
from where the
chief was shot.
Come on, Samuel.
Come on, boy.
Yeah, him.
Looks like him.
Yeah, looks
like him, too.
That's it,
that's all.
I got people that
said it was four.
I want four, Samuel,
now you think.
Somebody's going
to jail, boy.
Who's it
gonna be?
they look pretty
much like 'em.
God forgive me.
Chief David Hennessy
was murdered,
by an Italian
criminal organization
called the Mafia
in Sicily.
Tragically, it has arrived
with the Italian immigrants
that we have welcomed
to New Orleans.
David Hennessy
knew the danger
of these Italian groups.
He lost his life
fighting them.
His death must not
be in vain!
We must teach these
people a lesson
they will not forget!
(crowd shouting)
(indistinct shouting)
Yeah, go back!
Hold up your heads!
You are innocent!
Joseph "Macheeca."
He's the boss of
the conspiracy.
They do what
he tells them.
Charles Mantranga,
he planned it with "Macheeca."
Pietro Monasterio,
Lived across from where
the chief was shot.
They used his
shop to prepare.
Bastian Incompara,
a criminal in Italy.
Got an eyewitness
says he was running away
carrying a gun.
Same as Emmanuel Polizzi.
Angelo Bagnetto
and Umberto Scaffidi.
Both identified
by witnesses.
Antonio Marchesi,
identified as
one of the gunmen.
Gaspare Marchesi,
seen at Monasterio's.
He whistled to tell the gunmen
the chief was coming.
How come you don't
have a witness
that says "Macheeca"
was one of the shooters?
Because 300 witnesses
say he was in the theater
watching the show
with Mantranga
at the time of the shooting.
Conspiracy is
the best he'll do.
Any of them confess?
Not yet.
Goddammit, Billy.
Billy here, will
get a confession.
Everything will be fine,
James, just be patient.
(band playing sullen music)
I'm not walking with them,
pretending like I wish
he weren't dead.
Shut up.
Show a little bit of respect
and take off your hat.
For what?
You hated him.
I'm not talking
about Hennessy.
He's a dead bastard.
I'm talking about
my new friends here.
What friends?
Are any of you guilty?
Then why aren't
you angry?
They may
take our freedom,
but you take
your own dignity!
We're just the dagos.
That's what
they want!
They want you to think
you're nothing!
Don't give that
to them!
We will have justice,
I'll give you my word.
I don't believe
I have enough evidence
to hold some
of these men,
let alone
convict them.
It's your job as
district attorney
to deliver a
verdict of guilty.
Mr. Mayor,
I'm telling you the reality.
We are holding
Joseph Macheca.
For what?
He wasn't
even there.
Neither was Mantranga.
Damnit, man,
they're the heads
of a conspiracy.
Conspir-- What conspiracy?
Both these men
are rich.
They have nothing to gain
and everything to lose.
What's their motive?
Hennessy had information
that would acquit
Georgio and Paolo
"Macheeco" did not want that
information coming out.
Why would Hennessy
testify for the Provenzanos?
He's the one
who arrested them.
No, Mr. Mayor.
This old dog
won't hunt.
This is a very weak case.
Not for a talented
lawyer like you,
Mr. Luzenberg.
Not for someone whose
job is on the line.
a confession or two
would make life easier.
Stranger things
have happened.
(whip snapping)
(indistinct chattering)
Keep his head up.
(speaking Italian)
I take
care of him.
We have to take
care of each other.
Hey, I remember you.
You fought with the
young Provenzano boy.
For your honor.
I dream to
be like you.
You dreamed of
being like me?
Well, now you are.
You want respect?
Behave as though
you deserve it.
Look at your father.
He risked everything
for you to come here.
You are his hope.
Where is my hope?
Inside yourself.
We have nothing.
Why they hate us?
Look what we
have achieved.
They brought us here
to be their servants.
In less than
a generation,
we threaten to be
their masters.
When we work together
we can do anything.
When we work together,
they call us Mafia.
They say Mafia
to create fear.
We are protected
by laws and by justice.
We do not need
the Mafia.
Signore Macheca,
you have money.
Maybe laws
protect you.
In the war,
I fought with the Louisiana
infantry for those laws.
I saw men give their
lives for those laws.
They are mine
and they are yours,
and they will
not forsake us.
(cells opening and closing)
Sheriff Villere.
Tom Semmes, Jesus.
Now what's a former
attorney general doing
taking money from
a murderin' dago?
You got no pride?
Sheriff Villere,
how are you?
Tell me you come to stay
for a while, O'Malley.
Kill anyone
today, sheriff?
"Macheeca," your
attorney's here.
Thank you, Warden Davis.
Joseph, this is insane.
We'll have you out
of here right away.
I don't want any harm
to come to you
because you are my lawyer.
This is Dominic O'Malley,
and this is Robert Collins.
They are private detectives,
they will be assisting us
in our investigations.
Thank you for
coming, gentlemen.
If they beat me,
I tell them
Macheca did it.
I don't die for him.
Now, it seems like
they don't have much
to hold you on.
The best they can hope
for here is conspiracy.
And I think that's
wishful thinking.
No matter
what they wish,
I have a right
to fair trial.
And you will
get one.
Can you make sure
they will as well?
I beg your pardon?
I want you to
represent all of us.
There are two charges
filed against each of you.
Lyin' in wait
to commit murder,
and murder.
Now right now, there
are 19 other Italians
held on
the same charges.
Nine of you are set
to go to trial first.
They are all
innocent, Thomas.
No one's confessed,
that's a start.
They've beaten
them pretty bad.
What we need
from you
is to tell us where
you were on the night,
and then we will check
to see if your alibis
stand up.
I was with Mantranga
at the theater.
We have plenty
of witnesses.
Charles Mantranga.
All right, uh,
anybody else?
Whoa, whoa,
wait, for God's sake now.
All right,
now what's your name?
Mr. Collins, will
you write this down?
Now, the rest of you,
please sit quietly and wait.
I will get to each one of you,
don't worry.
Oh... Gaspare...
Gaspare Marchesi?
Where were you when
Hennessy was killed?
I take shoes
to Pietro Monasterio
for Don Mantranga.
Where was
your father?
He go for a walk.
Tom Semmes,
Now he's a real lawyer.
He used to be
attorney general,
for Pete's sake.
Now, how the hell
did "Macheeca"--?
Calm yourself,
Mr. Mayor.
All we need
is confession.
Have you heard from
Sheriff Villere yet?
Your job just got harder,
Mr. Luzenberg.
Dominic O'Malley has tried
to bribe juries in the past.
And I don't think
the leopard's gonna
change his spots.
We've got to find out
what their side is
thinking before they do.
Surely, one of them
will cooperate.
Gentlemen, I don't
want to hear this.
Well, Mr. Luzenberg,
maybe you oughtta
get back to work.
Be careful what you say
around the D.A.
He has a very naive view
of how justice
is accomplished.
Who was it
you had in mind?
I don't mean
to be a pessimist,
but if we lose one,
I think there's
a good chance
the jury could
convict them all.
Most of these alibis
rely on the testimony
of Italians.
I wouldn't count on
the jury believing 'em.
Well, they don't have a case.
They've got
nothing but rumor
that links Mantranga
and Macheca to it.
But if they sell
the jury the conspiracy,
it may be enough.
They may not have a case
but neither do we.
Do you remember
what it was like
that night?
Fog so thick you couldn't
see 10 feet in front of you.
To have seen anything,
they'd have had to been
standing next to the gunmen.
With the amount of
lead flyin' around,
it's a miracle
no one got hit.
Are you saying
they were coached?
You'll never
prove that.
Well, we could put
reasonable doubt
in the minds
of the jury.
With all the noise
Mayor Shakspeare's makin'
reasonable doubt
won't be enough.
He's right.
We've got to prove
they're liars.
Which shouldn't
be too difficult,
seeing as they are.
As my sainted mother
used to say--
O'Malley, you
never had a mother.
What, what do you
have in mind?
I still have friends
in uniform.
I'll make up a list
of all their witnesses
and Rob and I can pay 'em
a visit.
'Morning, 'morning.
Who's the fellow
who looks like
he's going
to a wedding?
Pasquale Corte,
Italian Consul.
The other two?
Tell them to come in,
all of them.
Mr. Corte,
Mr. Consul,
how may I be of service?
please sit down.
These are reporters.
We've got nothing
to hide, do we?
I have come to register
a formal complaint
about the treatment
of the Italian men
who were arrested.
Arrested for...?
The murder of
Chief Hennessy.
Ah, murder, yes,
yes, of course.
You see, there are
a great many Italians
who get arrested.
I just wanted
to make sure
we were singing from
the same song sheet.
Now, since
you're here,
I wonder if you could explain
the Italian government
sending thousands of
criminals they don't want,
to us, here,
in New Orleans.
Well, I suppose
it's a good way
to rid yourself
of a problem,
but frankly,
we don't want your
thieves and murderers.
So tell your government,
if you ship us
your lawbreakers,
we're gonna throw them in jail
or ship them back.
Mr. Mayor, the men
of whom I speak
have been
treated shamefully.
They have been beaten
and abused by their guards.
They cannot
have visitors.
I have informed the Italian
ambassador in Washington.
Well, Mr. Consul, sir,
I'm gonna ask
Sheriff Villere
to investigate
this situation
and instigate any reforms
that he deems appropriate.
Sound fair?
No, mama.
Si, Megan.
No talking Italian.
(men laughing)
What do the lawyers say?
You don't worry
about nothing.
We'll all be there
in court for you.
(man speaking Italian)
Don't talk
to them, Tony.
Let's go.
(Mrs. Marchesi
speaking Italian)
Mr. Peeler,
are you there?
Collins, forget it,
there's plenty more.
Let's keep moving.
Who's next?
John Duare.
John Duare?
He don't work here no more.
Samuel Foster,
No, I ain't seen him
for a long while.
Just up and
She ain't here.
When will
Miss Wheeler be back?
Didn't say,
y'all done yet?
It's as if they knew
we were coming.
I have a bad feeling.
It's like this one's
already bought
and paid for.
I hear the Provenzano
brothers are getting out.
The Provenzano brothers.
(speaking Italian)

(men muttering to the music)
(music stops)
(speaking Italian)
(cheering and laughing)
To Mr. James Houston,
a man of his words.
Hey, Joe.
And may Macheca
and Mantranga
burn in hell.
Heh? (speaking Italian)
(men cheering)
Hey, Giovanni...
You don't
look happy.
You wish your brothers
were still in prison?
Is that what
you wish?
It is not
what I wish.
You wish that
I had failed.
We are not
dagos anymore.
We are part of
New Orleans now.
And I gave us that.
Is that what
you gave us?
That's right,
step aside.
It is better for you and
better for the Provenzanos.
Antonio... (speaking Italian)
we get fresh air.
No, no, papa.
He's dancing.
Music, music, come on.
(music resumes)
Have your fun.
Come on, dance!
Play the music,
play the music.
Play the music.
Son, I want you
to look me in the eye
and tell me,
did your father
kill Mr. Hennessy?
Well, then you better
tell me he was.
Because he's
got no alibi.
Do you understand?
As sure as the sun
rises in the morning,
he'll hang.
Delores Johnson.
Delores Johnson.
She'll swear Marchesi
was with her
at the Red Lantern
at the time
Hennessy was killed.
She knows him well.
He's been there
more than once.
A jury's gonna
believe a whore?
Why would she lie?
Marchesi was arrested
right in front of the place.
The police reports
give her credibility.
That's not proof.
Well, it's the
best we got.
It's all we've got.
Alright, let's
get a deposition.
But you'll have to
look after her
until she
can testify.
Oh, ain't that
a tragedy.
(distant piano playing)
That's me.
You dago lovin'
piece of shit.
(dry laugh)
(both chuckle)
I came to see
Mr. Houston.
You can say that
Vincent Provenzano is here.
He said to
come at night.
How do
I look?
Has anything I told
you would happen
not been true?
So, stop
being nervous.
Mr. Houston is not
able to see you.
Go back inside
and tell him
that Vincent Provenzano
is waiting here.
Mr. Houston.
I just thought
I'd pass by,
and thank you for what
you did for my brothers,
Georgio and Paolo.
I don't know what
you're talking about.
I understand.
I just want to
let you know that,
whenever you're ready,
we can sit down and talk
about our business together.
Business, I don't
do business with dagos.
You think I'm dagos,
I'm gonna kill you!
(shouting in Italian)
come on!
You, you're the dagos!
(shouting in Italian)
calm down!
Let's go, come on!
(shouting continues)
Vincenzo, come on,
we're gonna get
out of here.

where you going?
I'm gonna kill
that lying bastard.
Georgio, Paolo,
come on.
(speaking Italian)
Give them back the guns,
We're gonna make
Houston pay now.
Pay for what?
He lied to me.
He promised
and he lied.
And no one betrays
Vincenzo Provenzano.
Paolo, let's go.
You kill him,
you kill all of us
with one bullet.
Georgio, Paolo,
let's go.
I got you out,
let's go!
Tony, you
come with me.
stay here.
Tony, you come
with me.
He promised...
and he lied, Giovanni!
He lied!
What did he
promise you?
He promised me
the future.
He promised me
that I would be American.
He promised me,
He promised me.
Did you kill
tell me.
I swear on my mother,
I didn't kill anyone.
(speaking Italian)
I believe you.
You want to be
Look what America's
done to you!
To all of us.
Honey, you look like
you've had enough.
we ain't open.
I need to speak
to Delores Johnson.
Delores is gone.
Where'd she go?
They never really say,
I never really ask.
Where the devil
have you been?
I got sandbagged.
is gone.
How would they have
known about the whore?
We're the only ones
who knew about her.
Except the prisoners.
The walls in
that jail have ears.
Poor, Goddamn, dagos.
I bet they wish
they'd stay in Palermo.
All rise...
the court of the city
of New Orleans
is now in session.
Honorable Joshua G. Baker
Judge Baker:
You are charged
with the murder
of metropolitan police
chief David Hennessy,
and lying in wait
to commit his murder.
How do you plead?
Your Honor the defense
moves for a postponement.
We've had not had
the opportunity
to interview
the prosecution witnesses.
You've had amble
opportunity, Mr. Semmes.
Motion denied.
Let's proceed with
the jury selection.
I think they could
wash a bit more.
I like 'em fine.
(scattered laughter)

No, thank you.
Judge Baker:
You may step down.
Justice is the glue
that holds us together.
entitled to it.
Even a dago.
Judge Baker:
Would you take your hat
or whatever it is, off, sir?
It is my custom.
Well, it is my custom
that you take it off.
Do you respect
the law, sir?
I try to respect the law
of both man and God.
I hope we all do.
I buy from them
but no I don't
employ any.
Never had no
trouble with them.
Judge Baker:
May I remind the
gentlemen of the jury
not to discuss this
case with anyone.
And To keep your minds open to
all the evidence presented.
Mr. Luzenberg,
will you be ready to
present the people's case
in the morning?
Your Honor.
Very well.
In that case,
this court is adjourned.
The judge was
out of line
ruling against
the postponement.
Maybe O'Malley's right,
maybe this whole thing
is just an exercise.
I pray to God
you're both mistaken.
I've got good news.
We could
use some.
I went back to
the Red Lantern.
There's an old whore there
who'll corroborate
that Marchesi was with
Delores Johnson.
Did you
talk to her?
I'm meetin' her tonight
at her place, 9:00 o'clock.
Um, thirty...
39 Strathern Street.
Good work.
(slaps table)
(light crackles)
(glass rattling onto floor)
There's no witness here for
you to intimidate, Collins.
Do you want me
to shoot them?
Collins, why?
It was a great
deal of money.
Get out.
Collins, can't
believe it.
Oh, it's a...
it's a wicked
old world.
(gun clicking)
Now what?
We can move
for a mistrial.
Mr. Semmes,
you and I both know
that's not gonna happen.
I heard shots.
I ran out of the bar
toward the shooting.
When I got there,
four men were standing
across the road
from the chief still
firing at him.
Then they ran off.
Do you see them
in the court?
Yes, sir.
that fella...
and him.
Let the record show
that he has identified.
Pietro Monasterio,
Umberto Scaffidi,
Emmanuel Polizzi,
and Antonio Marchesi.
Your witness.
So, you were working
in the bar that night
and you heard
Heard it,
ran out, saw it.
Really foggy
that night, wasn't it?
Why you looking at
Sheriff Villere here?
Is he is
expert on fog?
It was foggy.
So you must have gotten
real close to the gunmen
to see their faces
in the fog.
Yes, sir, they
ran right into me.
Hm, well, they just
shot the chief,
and they run
right by you,
and close enough to see
their faces in the fog, huh?
And you're
an eyewitness.
Yes, sir.
And these are
ruthless killers.
Yes, they were.
So, why didn't
they shoot you?
Objection, he's asking
the witness to speculate.
Judge Baker:
Maybe they
didn't see you.
'Cause of the fog.
Do you keep a gun
behind your bar?
No crime in that.
So you heard shooti''
and you ran out.
I mean, most people
don't like being shot at.
I felt maybe somebody
was being robbed.
I thought maybe I could
help, be a good citizen.
Well, you certainly
are a brave citizen.
You heard shooting,
and you ran out.
Did you take
your gun with you?
No, I don't
think I did.
Because if you had,
you could have used it
to assist Chief Hennessy,
being a good citizen.
Now, you heard shooting,
and you ran out,
and you didn't take
your gun with you?
Mr. Duare,
you're under oath.
Did you really
run out,
did you really see
anything that night?
I told you what I saw and
I ain't changing my story.
Well, at least we can
agree it is a story.
He told me he
whistled five times.
And that's how they knew
the chief was coming.
Do you see him
in the court?
That one there.
Let the record show
he has identified
Gaspare Marchesi.
Mr. Semmes.
Where did you first
meet Gaspare Marchesi?
Parish Prison.
Why were you in
Parish Prison?
Stealing food,
but I was innocent.
Yeah, well,
I'm sure you are.
There's a lot of innocent
men in Parish Prison.
Now, Gaspare Marchesi
confesses to you.
Why, you his
best friend?
I think he
was bragging.
Said his daddy and
a fella called Polizzi
shot the chief and that
he turned state's evidence.
Ratted on 'em
to save himself.
(speaking Italian)
He lie!
That's enough,
young man.
I want you to keep
your client in his seat
and quiet.
Yes, Your Honor.
But you might understand
why he is angry.
Because he has not
turned state's evidence.
Has he,
Mr. Luzenberg?
Just telling you
what he said.
Maybe he
was lying.
Maybe you are.
I think that is
a fair comment.
So do I,
You in Parish Prison now?
Why not?
The charges
was dropped.
If the charges
were dropped,
why were you in jail
with Mr. Marchesi?
They don't give you
a choice when they arrest...
I bet they gave
you a choice,
didn't they William?
You don't have
to answer that.
The others was running away.
Didn't see their faces,
but I saw Mr. Monasterio
standing maybe 10 feet
from the chief's body.
God rest his soul.
So, Pietro Monasterio
did not run away
as Mr. Duare
has testified?
He was standing
right there.
Did you see him
shoot the chief?
No, sir.
Did he have a gun?
No, sir.
How was he dressed?
In the underclothes.
That must have
been quite a sight.
Yes, sir.
So he managed to get rid
of his gun and his clothes
after he shot
the chief.
Just telling
you what I see.
And I thank you
for it.
Nothing further.
The people call
Samuel Foster.
Do you swear
to tell the truth,
the whole truth,
nothing but the truth,
so help you God?
I do.
Mr. Foster.
You were on
Gerard Street
the night of Chief Hennessy's
Yeah, I was.
And you told Sheriff Villere
that you saw the shooting?
Do you see the men
who shot Chief Hennessy
in this courtroom?
(surprised chatter)
I'm sorry?
You identified the gunmen
for Sheriff Villere.
Yeah, I did.
But they ain't here.
(loud surprised chatter)
Do you know the penalty
for perjury, Mr. Foster?!
That's why I'm telling
you the truth.
Which is what
I just swore to do.

Scusa, sir, Luzenberg...
"So, Mr. Monasterio,"
"what exactly"
"you underwear
look like, huh?"
"Like yours,
but not so big!"
Joe Macheca,
do you think maybe
we can go out
before the king's
birthday, possibly?
Yes, it's all
possible now.
You'll see.
Grazie, Giuseppe.
You always strong,
always believe.
Yes, I always
believed, but,
it's still not over.
tomorrow in court,
the prosecution...
(speaking Italian)
No, no, Gaspare!
I saw that fellow
there shoot the chief.
He kept shooting him
even when he's lying
on the ground.
He's identified
Umberto Scaffidi.
And that one,
he shot him, as well.
He had a single
shot rifle.
He kept loading
and firing.
He has identified
Bastian Incompara.
And him,
he had a pistol.
Emptied it in the chief,
reloaded and kept firing.
The witness has
identified Emmanuel Polizzi.
(crowd commotion)
Get that man,
get that man!
Get that man!
I do what
you want!
I do what
you ask me!
Macheca, Mantranga,
they are head
of the Mafia.
They make
vengeance on you
and you,
they make you die!
(crowd commotion)
I want Signore
Polizzi's outburst
stricken from
the record.
He's not mentally
competent to stand trial
at this time.
Now I request
an adjournment
in order to
Hold your horses,
Mr. Semmes!
The court will determine
Mr. Polizzi's competence.
There will be
an adjournment
for a doctor to evaluate
his mental condition,
then I'll rule.
Sweet Jesus.
The jury could see
he was disturbed.
Well, they could
also hear
the doctor telling him
he was sane.
You got better
than a confession.
They got their conspiracy,
they got their Mafia.
And every witness
that we put up there
to refute tomorrow,
well, the jury could
just disregard them
as being part of
the same conspiracy,
now can't they?
(slams glass down)
Where you going?
You don't
want to know.
Any Italian
that succeeds
he must be part
of the Mafia.
If I had the Mafia,
I wouldn't be here for sure.
Mr. Macheca,
I'm gonna need
some money.
To buy the jury.
I've paid for many
things in my life.
I never dreamed
I would pay for my life.
I'm innocent.
That's why
we're doing this.
Hold it right
there, O'Malley.
What's all this?
under arrest.
You must be joking.
Is that what
it look like?
What's this?
Your laundry list?
There can be no doubt
that David Hennessy's death
is the result of
a criminal conspiracy.
The confession
of Emmanuel Polizzi,
a man who threatened you,
and Judge Baker,
confirms their...
So, the question is,
should you
feel threatened?
Should you feel
You should send a message
that will tell these
Italian criminals
in our city,
that we are
not intimidated,
we are not afraid to
see justice done.
Do not let
the Mafia
reach their black hand
into this courtroom.
You must find the courage
to bring a guilty verdict.
Conspiracy is vague,
and frightening,
but there is nothing
to be afraid of here.
You've seen
the so-called witnesses.
Instead of facts
and credibility,
we are fed a daily
dose of hysteria.
Now have the courage
and the intelligence
not to succumb to it.
Do not join the angry mob
baying for innocent blood.
Protect these men.
Whose only crime
is their nationality.
Thanks for paying my bail.
So, Mr. O'Malley,
did you succeed
in bribing the jury?
Hell, no.
Well, I was
going to.
But they
got me first.
We've got no
chance at all.
What is all this?
The king of Italy.
His birthday,
it's a celebration.
What's this?
This proposal, I thought
you might encourage
the city council
to pass.
"Banning Italians
from any labor"
"or business
on the docks."
It's a crime
fighting initiative
to clean up
those docks.
Don't you agree,
Mr. Parkerson?
I do.
We got a verdict.
Mr. Foreman, have you
reached a verdict?
We have
Your Honor.
How say you?
The city of New Orleans
vs. Joseph Macheca
for the murder
of David Hennessy,
the jury finds the defendant
not guilty.
(crowd commotion)
Go, Macheca!
(cheering and scattered
The city of New Orleans
vs. Charles Mantranga,
the jury finds
the defendant not guilty.
Bravo, Don Mantranga!
(woman shouting in Italian)
The city of New Orleans
vs. Angelo Bagnetto,
the jury finds
the defendant not guilty.
(crowd commotion)
(shouting over each other)
The city of New Orleans
vs. Bastian Incompara,
the jury finds
the defendant not guilty.
They killed him,
they killed the chief!
This is a Mafia!
(commotion continues)
Bravo, bravo!
The city of New Orleans
vs. Gaspare Marchesi...
Man: Jew bastard!
Woman: Murderer!
Other man:
Why'd you let them go!?
...the jury finds
the defendant not guilty.
(mixed cheering and booing)
The city of New Orleans
vs. Antonio Marchesi,
the jury finds
the defendant not guilty.
(crowd commotion)
(speaking Italian)
How much
they paying you?!
In the case of
Umberto Scaffidi,
Pietro Monasterio,
and Emmanuel Polizzi,
we are unable
to reach a verdict.
(crowd uproar)
(gavel banging)
Judge Baker:
Silence in
the court!
The court will
come to order!
(commotion dies down,
gavel banging)
I order the defendants
to be held in
Parish Prison overnight
and to appear
in court tomorrow
to hear charges
of lying in wait.
How can they
lie in wait,
Your Honor?
They didn't
commit the murder!
I object!
I object, Your Honor,
that is illegal!
Court is
Your Honor!
Your Honor!
Your Honor!
(excited and outraged shouts)
If the jury won't give
the people what they want
then we have to.
Not like this.
Joe, could I speak with
you privately?
There's no way
that jumped-up guinea's
gonna make
a monkey out of me,
you understand?
I have not gone
to all this trouble
to walk away
empty handed.
You mean--
The people of New Orleans
are looking for a leader.
Mr. Mayor...
give them one.
Go on now,
say a few good words.
Mr. Parkerson will
take care of the rest.
Won't you, Bill?
Of course.
with you,
without you,
will be done.
Mayor Shakspeare:
Now, listen, listen,
(crowd booing)
Now! Now!
Listen to me!
There's nothing
you can say to us.
Our faith in American justice
has been betrayed!
Each one of us...
must search his conscience
and decide
whether he has
the resolve
to do what
is necessary!
(crowd cheering)
Now let me finish!
To do
what is necessary...
to see justice
(cheering and applause)
(crowd uproar)
They bought
the jury!
They did what?
They paid $50,000
for the verdict.
I heard it was
(excited and angered shouting)
We free, I meet
you tomorrow.
Where? (speaking Italian)
Clay statue.
(festive music playing,
crowd clapping)
(loud chatter and shouts)
I'm very happy for you,
Signora Marchesi.
(speaking Italian)
(overlapping shouts)
Now don't worry, they have
no legal rights to hold you.
Now, tomorrow you'll all
be free men.
(overlapping shouting
in Italian)
You alright?
They did not
release us, Thomas.
Well... don't worry.
We're gonna have you
out of here tomorrow.
You get some sleep, hm.
Sleep of
the just.
(distant chatter)
(patting leg)
thank you
for trying.
You get
some sleep.
(speaking Italian)
(newspaper thuds)
"All good citizens
"are invited to attend"
"a mass meeting."
"Saturday, March 14th"
"at 10:00 o'clock..."
Mayors office,
City Hall, hurry!
" Clay statue
"to take steps"
"to remedy the failure
of justice"
"in the Hennessy case."
"Come prepared
for action."

We must leave
New Orleans right now.
I'm not going
I know you're not,
what a waste.
I need to speak
with the mayor.
Mayor's not here,
Mr. Corte.
Where is he?
It's very important.
I believe
he's having breakfast
with Governor Nicholls
at the mansion.
Mr. O'Malley!
Mr. O'Malley!
Judge Baker
is not here, sir.
Where is he?
I haven't
seen him.
Is the mayor
not here?
I left word
for the mayor.
He's late
for breakfast.
Now, now, Mr. Corte,
calm yourself.
I'm sure it's gonna be
a peaceful demonstration.
(crowd uproar)
It is time
to take our city
back from the Mafia.
When the courts fail,
the people
must act!
(cheering, overlapping shouts)

You thank God he didn't say
it was a black man
who killed the chief.

Georgio, Paolo...
(speaking Italian)
Pietro, stand with me.
Please, signore...
(terrified screaming)
Stand aside.
(mob shouting)
Warden Davis,
you let these men
out now, you hear me?
I don't have
that authority.
Listen, if you can't
protect them
you must release them
into my custody.
They'll be protected
just fine.
And now, Mr. Semmes...
you must excuse me.
You know what is about
to happen here, don't you?
(distant shouting)
We walk into court
as free men.
And tonight
we celebrate.
We go to Storyville.
Hey, hey, we don't rest until
you are free with us, huh.
(crowd approaching)
(crowd uproar)
(chains rattling)
You run,
you hide!
In 30 seconds
I'm locking this place down!
Give us guns.
We need guns!
You hide, you pray,
it's the best I can do.
(speaking Italian)
Go, go!
(crowd shouting)
Get off me.
I'm a civil officer
of this court
and I have a right
to see my clients.
You will be held
morally responsible
for anything that
happens to them.
There's them
dagos' lawyer!
Get him,
get the bastard!

(clock chimes)
(crowd cheering)
Hold on.
Hold it!
We'll handle it
from here, boys.
(cheering and yelling)

(gate rattling)
(speaking Italian)
(indistinct shouting)
(gun shells rattling)
Down here.

Ooh, ooh, ooh, ooh!
(speaking Italian)
(crowd uproar)
(speaking Italian)
(guns cocking)
(crowd uproar fades)
(birds chirping)
(distant crowd uproar)
(distant gunfire)

(crowd uproar)

Get the door,
get the door!
(door rattling)
(shouting in Italian)
(lock clicks)
(yelling in Italian)
(guns cocking)
We are
innocent men.
(guns cocking)
(crowd uproar)
(shouting in Italian)
Here's one
still breathing!

(door thudding)
Gaspare, Gaspare!
Come on, boys!
Other man:
Over here!
This way!

(gunfire continues)
(crowd cheering wildly)
(cheering dies down)
Our work is done!
celebratory gunfire)
We got
all of them!
(gunfire continues)
Go home now
and God bless you all.
(cheering wildly, gunfire)
God bless you, sir!
(cheering fades)
Did any of
them survive?
While the "New York Times"
did not condone
the largest lynching
in American history,
they did point out
that the mob had done
the jury's work
for them.
Theodore Roosevelt
called the lynchings
"rather a good thing."

I knew if
I spoke to my mother
I could never obey my father's
final instructions
to leave
this cursed place.
For a time
it looked as if
there would be war
between America and Italy,
but President Harrison
paid $25,000
and that was enough
to make everyone forget.

But we
did not forget.
A big statue was raised
to Chief Hennessy,
whose own murder
was never solved.
No one ever raised
a statue to my father.