Columbo (1971) s10e13 Episode Script

Murder with Too Many Notes

Mr McEnery! Yo! Mr McEnery! Ladies and gentlemen, I think it's time to put this one to bed.
Thank you very much.
Take ten, relax.
How many times have I asked you not to come up on this roof? Mr McEnery? Do you hear me? Freddie, you know I'm always here when the maestro conducts.
- This is where I get my inspiration.
- You're gonna inspire me to get fired.
Your friend Mr Crawford doesn't pay the insurance premiums for this studio.
Huh? - Hey.
- Hey.
- So, how was it? - Not bad.
Some sections were good.
We know where they came from.
- But I had some thoughts.
- Gonna tell him? Yeah.
He's in a good mood so don't get too excited cos it'll take you twice as long.
Thank you, nurse.
By the way, I like the piano.
- What about the pianist? - Hm.
Not bad.
- How did it sound up there today? - Crystal clear, Mr Crawford.
- Anything interesting? - A few things grabbed my fancy.
- Grabbed your fancy, did they? - They did.
- D'you want to talk about it? - Yeah, I think so.
Follow me.
- Very nice young woman, Rebecca.
- I'm a lucky man.
- Marriage in the air? - Soon as I get established.
Ah! Nice word, "established".
Nathaniel, I take it that last one was to your liking, or I would've heard.
Good take, Mr Crawford.
Got it all.
Care to see it played back? Oh, later.
Why don't you good people take your break? - Tell the others I'll call when I'm ready.
- Will do.
Come on, guys.
Let's hit the caffeine and doughnuts, all right? Now, what gems droppeth from the mouths of babes and sucklings? A few things at various points.
I'd like to start at the end of the sequence, with a suggestion I hope you'll like.
No! Thank you.
- Findlay, my boy - Yes, Sidney? - You've done it again.
- You liked it? Liked it? I loved it.
That end, dropping the music for the stabbing and the screaming Man.
- Hey, thanks a lot, guys.
Great job.
- Any time, Sidney.
About the end, I felt that the sound effects would have much better dramatic strength without music.
And let's not forget, you directed it.
Once you bring your magic to that final scene, I think - no, I don't think, I know - we're gonna have another big one.
Well, I gotta scramble.
Gotta go meet the writer for our next one.
It's really shaping up.
Stick around, son.
It's a smart move - learn from the maestro.
- Concert tomorrow night.
- You bet.
"Crawford Conducts Crawford".
We're gonna have a ball.
See you.
I feel like a drink.
What do you say we go over to the bungalow, celebrate? Sure.
Let's celebrate.
And talk.
Now you get the idea.
Good talk.
Music talk.
- He said, "Stick around, son.
" - Sidney? He meant no harm.
That's his way.
He's very fond of you.
- How long have you been with Sidney? - Apart from my other work? I think I've done everything of Sidney's over the past 20 years.
Eight, nine movies.
Can't you use a glass? I thought we'd weaned you off that.
- Bad habit, my boy.
- "My boy"? "Bad habits"? "Stick around, son"? I'm gonna change a lot of habits for the better.
I've never seen you like this.
Have a real drink.
It'll calm you down.
It's time to celebrate.
Time for you to celebrate.
Musically, I don't exist here.
Gabriel I've seen all your old ones on video.
Many times.
That's why I'm here.
You were great then.
The best.
But by the time I came onto the scene, you were beginning to lose it.
- Lose what, Gabriel? - The talent.
The gift.
The spark of creation.
It's five years since I came on as your apprentice, and I'm grateful for the early training, but you needed me, and it wasn't long before I was doing most of your scores.
The one we're working on now? And this one? The one you won the grand prize for? This one? This one's all mine.
To prove it, I have copies of the original and the one I wrote to win you the grand prize.
And yet not one word of acknowledgment? I don't exist here.
I'm going to go to Sidney Ritter, tell him the whole story, and he'll find me work.
- Yeah, I'm moving on.
- Not yet! Not yet, Gabriel.
I remember it so well.
And you're right, it was five years.
Freddie, the security guard, told me there was a man on the roof conducting my music.
Consumed with curiosity, I left the orchestra alone.
I watched you.
I was very impressed.
We talked.
You showed me some of your original material.
I took you on as my apprentice, remember? But that fairy tale doesn't have a happy ending.
Not yet.
Not yet, Gabriel.
Not yet.
I have been remiss.
I don't even know if I'll ever be able to forgive myself.
But the way I thank you will gladden your heart.
You know what this is? The concert.
"'Crawford Conducts Crawford'.
" "A benefit concert of music and murder from the movies.
" "Themes from The Killer, Alibi, Extinction", et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.
"Gentlemen, coat and tie.
Ladies, dressed to kill.
" - I enjoyed writing that last line.
- Did you? How would you like to conduct your own score from The Killer? - What, on a roof? - No, no.
With my orchestra.
On the podium in front of the audience.
Your piece will be first after the intermission, and I will introduce you.
You're joking.
You don't mean that.
On the contrary.
I mean every word of it.
I fully intend calling Sidney this evening and explaining everything.
Well, perhaps not everything.
I've no intention of fully humiliating myself.
But I do intend to tell him of your huge talent, and to urge him to let you score his next movie on your own.
He'll listen to me.
What say you? Bit of a shock, huh? Mr Crawford I'm sorry.
Nonsense! You were right.
I was completely wrong.
And let's dispense with this Mr Crawford nonsense.
From now on, call me Findlay.
- Can we shake on that? - Thank you, Mr Crawford.
- Findlay! - Thank you.
Thank you Findlay.
Well thank you.
I'm gonna have to go climb a mountain or something! One minute, 58 seconds.
Hey, Gabriel! You're early.
Hey, Jack.
There's a surprise item tonight.
I'm gonna rehearse.
You ought to have the place to yourself till later.
What's with the rehearsal? What's the surprise? - You gonna come tonight? - You bet.
I'll be off duty.
Well, then you'll see.
See you later, man.
Oh, Rebecca.
My, my.
How nice to see you properly dressed for a change.
I wanted to rehearse my piece in this outfit.
I'm not used to it, I want to get the feel of it.
- So, I didn't expect you so early.
- Oh, I called your home.
Wanted you to come in, had a little news I thought you might be interested in.
You said you had some news? Did you call Sidney? We had a little chat.
What did he say? Of course, you told Rebecca about the little deal we had with Ritter? No, only about conducting.
I wanted to keep the other one as the big surprise until it was confirmed.
- Is it? - I was sure you would tell someone.
- Never.
Not until I know for sure.
- This was chilled when I left home.
You may find it a bit warm, but I'm sure you won't mind.
Findlay, please.
Tell me what he said.
Drink up maestro.
- He said yes? - He was astonished when I gave him my proposal.
He'd no idea of the depth of your talent, but he trusts every word I tell him.
You have his movie.
You will score it yourself.
If he likes it, you're in business.
- How How can I thank you? - Drink up, celebrate, say cheers.
- Cheers! - Cheers! - I'm not sure if I should've done that.
- Nonsense! One little glass of that? You've two hours before the concert.
Have another.
No! No.
I hardly ever drink.
Maybe a glass of beer now and then, but I wanna be alert for tonight.
I envy you your restraint.
One should be quite enough.
- Stupid of me.
I'm sorry.
- Not to worry.
We can clean that up.
Why don't you play the CD and we'll rehearse together? Two maestros.
I don't know what's the matter.
I just feel kinda Everything's going to be just fine.
Everything's going to be just fine and dandy.
- Evening, Mr Crawford.
- Evening.
Do you have the time? My watch has gone a little strange.
Precisely seven minutes and 14 seconds of eight.
Thank you.
I'm ready.
I'm afraid I have to miss it.
Good luck.
Good night, George.
We're about to begin.
The concert's about to begin right now.
The usher will show you to your seats.
Come on.
- Three minutes.
Where is he? - Take it easy, Eric.
Findlay's never late.
Aha! What did I tell you? Hi, Findlay.
- Are the scores in place? - Yes, sir.
- And the baton? Is it there? - I thought you would have it.
Oh, blast.
My mistake.
I'll go get it.
Sidney, please start the intro.
Dim audience.
Bring up podium spot.
Thanks for that ovation, folks.
I guess by now most of you are wondering, "Who the heck is this guy?" Well, I'm the director of all the movies you're gonna hear the music from tonight.
Sidney Ritter at your service.
Thank you.
The programme says this is an evening of murder and music from the movies.
What do I know about murder? I must know something, cos I've been making murder mysteries for 20 years.
Nine in all.
And not one of them would have worked without the spine-tingling, suspenseful, spooky, terrific scores composed by Findlay Crawford.
Oh, by the way, you may have noticed television cameras in here, and with any luck you'll see yourself on TV real soon.
Our first film was "Alibi".
Our most recent, "Extinction".
Music is mood, music is story.
And for Findlay Crawford, music is murder.
Ladies and gentlemen, Findlay Crawford's scores do everything that great movie music should do.
He is a great friend, a great composer and a great conductor.
And he should know, because he wrote this introduction himself.
As a special treat, we would like to open tonight's concert with a piece that you haven't heard - a work in progress.
Here to conduct selections from our soon-to-be-released movie Corkscrew, Findlay Crawford.
- Would you hurry up? We'll miss it.
- I'm hurrying! - You got the tickets? - I'm trying to find them.
- It's already started.
- I'll find them! Oh, my God.
- A terrible accident! - Somebody fell! A guy fell off the roof! Where? Where? Tommy, get the door! All that way? I'm out on stage 28.
I got an emergency.
I need an ambulance now! Miss Holy Mother A tragedy.
So young, so talented.
Poor Rebecca.
So you were a little late and then you saw the deceased fall from the roof? No, we saw him land.
I practically tripped over the guy.
We were running when, wham, the guy fell right there in front of us.
- Wham.
- "Wham.
" Are you getting any of this, Lieutenant? Lieutenant? Down here, Sarge.
Oh, I didn't notice you.
Sorry, Lieutenant.
Don't worry about it, Sarge.
Happens all the time.
- Did you hear what they said? - I got most of it.
- You about done? - One last angle.
Grab this one.
OK, fellas, it's all yours.
- That last part, when he hit the ground - The wham.
I got the wham.
Just before the wham, ma'am, what happened? Like I told the sergeant, we were running to catch - You were late.
- I was searching for the tickets.
- She mislays things.
- You looked up? - No, I didn't.
- We didn't look up.
So you first saw the deceased - When he fell at our feet.
- Nearly tripped.
- We've never seen anything like it.
- These things can be upsetting.
But if you don't mind, you didn't see him falling? You just saw him hit the ground? - Right.
- Got their names and addresses? - Right here.
- Thank you.
That'll be all for now.
- Thank you.
Good night.
- Good night.
Thank you very much.
Sergeant, let me see your notebook.
Ma'am! Ma'am! Hold on a second! Ma'am! Sir! - Uh, yes, Lieutenant? - I'm sorry to bother you again.
I want you just to think clearly.
Did you have any warning that he was falling? - I don't know what you mean.
- Warning? It's in your statement, ma'am, that you screamed when he hit the ground.
Did either of you hear the deceased scream before he hit the ground? - I screamed.
- Really loud.
And that was the only scream? Are you sure of that? Positive.
- Thank you.
- Yes, sir.
Thank you.
- Yeah, this is where he was, Lieutenant.
- What was he doing up here all alone, conducting to the moon? - He's been up here in the daytime, right? - Often.
- Did his boss know he was up here? - Everybody knew.
He was a legitimate musician.
According to his girlfriend, he was scheduled to conduct the first piece after intermission.
Well, that explains the tuxedo.
But how did he hear the music? We had a microphone rigged down below.
It carried the music over to his radio and then to the loudspeakers.
Oh, I see.
So this kid he had some brains.
What's this? Oh.
He had a music stand.
Where was this? Right there.
That was his spot.
I guess it made him feel like he was in a concert hall.
He was kinda eccentric.
Eccentric, yeah.
- A bit close to the edge, there, Lieutenant.
- What a way to go.
Tell me, Sergeant, if you felt yourself falling off this edge into that darkness, would you scream? - They'd hear it in Timbuktu.
- Well, young Gabriel never uttered a cry.
He fell to his death in silence.
I'm guessing, but I'd say he was either dead or drugged.
- Uh, sir - No.
Sergeant, think about that.
Yes, sir.
You say this was his spot? This is where he always stood and conducted.
What did you find on his body? - A handkerchief and a piece of paper.
- Anything under the body? I believe, sir, you looked under the body.
I don't want to get into that.
Have your men search where the body fell and all along this alleyway, right here.
- Can I have your flashlight? - Yes, sir.
Thank you.
The Killer.
Hey, I remember that one.
My wife saw it once and she dragged me to it when she went a second time.
Not bad.
"Music composed by Findlay Crawford.
" - Yeah, he's famous.
He won an award.
- Where's he at? Bungalow down below.
Close to this building.
- Who is it? - Lieutenant Columbo, sir.
Come in.
Oh, sorry to disturb you, sir.
I realise this is a bad time.
Have a drink.
It's a good time to be drinking.
Not right now.
Thank you, sir.
Still on duty.
Would it be all right, sir, if I, uh smoked a small cigar? Of course.
I love a good cigar myself.
There's a humidor over there.
Help yourself.
Oh, I'm kind of used to these, sir.
Thank you.
Please yourself.
Light up, sit down, make yourself at home.
- No more home for poor Gabriel.
- That was unfortunate, sir.
It's a tragedy, Mr Columbo.
A tragedy.
A wonderful young man with a great future.
So I heard, sir.
He was like a son to me.
Let's have some music.
- Tchaikovsky.
- Well, uh, sir, I - Perhaps you'd rather some rock'n'roll? - I wouldn't say that, sir.
At least we've established part of your taste.
But I think it's time for some sad music, more befitting the mood of the evening.
A little cello, perhaps.
Nothing weeps like a cello.
Now, Mr Crawford Mr Crawford, I'm sure you could play wonderful music all night long, but there are a few questions.
I realise this has been a shock, - but it has to be done.
- What did you have in mind? Where were you, sir, when the deceased fell off the roof? I was on stage, conducting a concert.
When was the last time that you saw Mr McEnery alive, sir? That would be last evening, in here, in the bungalow.
What sort of mood was he in? Since I had just informed him he'd be conducting the theme from The Killer at tonight's programme ecstatic? Ecstatic day before.
Day before Oh, so he wasn't here when you arrived today? I arrived at the studio minutes before performance.
I didn't see Gabriel.
I just assumed, as was his normal practice, he'd be on the roof, conducting along with me, and would appear when he was due on stage.
So the first time that you saw him today, he was on the ground? - I can imagine how you felt, sir.
- I was devastated.
And what did you do right after that? Some members of the audience had come outside to gawp.
I told them to go back indoors.
I announced that the performance for this evening was cancelled, and assured those present that their tickets would be good for next Saturday, when an additional piece would be added.
A piece that I would compose myself as a as a tribute to Gabriel.
Oh, very nice gesture, sir.
Uh, tell me, uh Did Mr Gabriel, when he was conducting, did he always use a baton? Of course.
We all use batons.
- Why do you ask? - Well Well, you never know, sir.
Somebody said he was a bit eccentric.
Not that eccentric.
However, time I was getting home.
Anything else? I noticed this garment rental bag here on the couch.
Would that belong? That's Gabriel's.
His tuxedo, I would imagine.
He didn't own one.
- And he changed into it here? - Yes.
It's his home away from home.
- Anything more of his? - Oh, yes.
There's some oddments in the closet.
And his backpack.
- Mind if I take them, sir? - By all means.
I would be much obliged.
I don't need any reminders of what might have been.
- Everything of Gabriel's is on the left.
- Mm-hm.
- Are these his? - Yes, indeed.
Well, you've been a great help, sir.
Thank you very much.
- Good night.
- Good night, Mr Columbo.
- This other car, that would be? - That's Gabriel's.
We'll have to impound it.
Help yourself.
Oh, I got the keys.
So I'll have that moved out in the morning.
Blast! - Excuse me? Sir? - More questions? Uh, no, sir.
I just think it's not a very good idea for you to drive tonight.
- What are you talking about? - Forgive me, sir, but I saw you have a few drinks in there and the police are red-hot on Balderdash! I always have a couple of cocktails in the evening.
It relaxes me.
I drive better.
Check the car for scratches.
Well, I wouldn't question that, sir.
But even a nice car like this could have a tail-light or a turning signal go out, and if you were stopped with Scotch on your breath, they'd book you.
You're a cop, book me.
I'm afraid, I wouldn't want to do that with everything you've been through today.
But I have an idea.
Why don't you follow me on your way home? We'll take nice, quiet streets, and if anything happens, I'll take care of it.
Sorry, sir.
I forgot.
Where do you live? Oh, I know that street.
It's just near the museum.
My wife goes there now and then.
How about you going there? Right away, sir.
Follow me.
Mr McEnery's baton.
You said he used one.
We can't find it.
Any idea where it is? How would I know? Are we going to be here all night? Oh, I'm sorry, sir.
It just struck me.
It's not important.
It'll turn up.
We're going to get a move on, then, huh? We'll be there in no time.
Bad news, sir.
Out of gas.
- You've what? - Run out of gas.
Mind if I put this stuff in the back? - Just for the time being.
- That is it! I am on my way.
Oh, sir, I can't let you take the risk.
I got a better idea.
You happen to have a phone? You are something.
You are really something, Columbo.
- I'm resigned to my fate.
- That's the spirit, sir.
- What number? - 555-0169.
There you go.
Is that you, Jack? Yeah, it's me - Columbo.
Got a problem.
Out of gas.
Get a hold of Degarmo, have him bring a couple gallons out to - Where are we, sir? - Chancellor Street.
- Chancellor Street.
- Two blocks east of Laverne.
Two blocks east of Laverne.
You got that? Then have him take my car - the keys are under the front seat to 16 Mateo Drive in Bel Air.
I'll pick it up there.
As fast as you can.
You got that? Thanks, Jack.
In a macabre way, I'm beginning to enjoy this.
Why's that, sir? The last time I was driven in a limo was to the Awards.
Oh, that must have been a thrill.
Tell me, sir, where did Gabriel live? Some kind of dormitory or a hotel or a motel? No idea.
Never had the pleasure of a visit.
Well, I found these in his pocket.
Maybe you can help me, sir.
Take a look.
See his car key, there? It says "Volkswagen" on it.
And then there's a little key, maybe a mailbox, and two others.
They're maybe for a cabinet or some kind of a toolbox.
But there's no house key there.
Sir, don't most house keys have roughly the same size and shape? Don't know anything about them.
You know, falling off a roof - wow, what a terrible way to go, huh? Can you imagine the instant when you knew you were going over? The terror, huh? The scream.
Well, enough about that, sir.
How about some of this? Oh, I like that.
That's got some movement to it.
- Maybe you could take it out of first gear.
- Ah, you can't be too careful, sir.
Here we are, sir.
Safe and sound.
I hope you didn't mind, sir.
That was an experience.
All's well that ends well.
That's Shakespeare.
I'll have these cars out of here, sir.
Good night.
Uh, Lieutenant? There was half a tank of gas in this thing.
Don't tell anybody.
- What do you got, Sarge? - Not much, Lieutenant.
$32 - some bills, some small change.
His wallet.
Nothing unusual in there.
Couple of credit cards, a driver's license, photo of his girlfriend.
Got a receipt from some rental place for a tuxedo.
- Oh, the tuxedo place? - Mm-hm.
- You never know.
- All right.
Stacks of music, notebooks, pens and pencils in his backpack.
Give me his driver's license.
I don't know where he lives.
- Somewhere in the Valley.
- I need that.
- Oh, we're finished with these.
- Oh, the keys, yeah.
I've seen them before.
There was no other key shaped like a house key? We didn't find any.
But this stuff was in his car.
Couple of pairs of sneakers What about that piece of paper? A piece of paper in his tuxedo? Mm-hm.
One piece of paper.
And a handkerchief.
- We'll look at that later.
- All right, sir.
- Musical notes.
- Uh-huh.
So anything here indicate this kid was either drugged or dead before he fell? - I wouldn't say so, Sergeant.
- Oh.
Not yet.
- Morning, Archibald.
- How you doing? - Nice brisk morning, isn't it? - Yeah, it is.
- Think you can handle this? - Well, let's see this porch you got for me.
- 143B, that's us.
- OK.
Piece of cake.
These locks are ancient history.
You mind? I'll show you.
Ah Yep, one.
Ah two.
- There you are.
- What took you so long? Well, let's see now.
Gets a little stiff.
Pull the door closed when you're done.
I'll be at the station.
- Thank you, Archibald.
- My pleasure, Lieutenant.
Oh, photographs.
Oh, yeah.
Oh, look at that.
Oh, there they are again.
Oh, right here with jeans and sneakers.
With Mr Crawford.
I wonder.
Well, maybe.
Gabe! Who are you? What are you doing? Oh, I'm sorry.
I'm terribly sorry, miss.
I had no idea anybody was here.
I'm from the police.
I'll leave right now.
You are? Miss Rebecca.
I, um I came here last night to be close to him.
I couldn't sleep.
I had to take a sedative.
I'm sorry.
Please, miss.
That's This is a terrible time for you.
I'm sorry for the intrusion.
I'll leave right now.
One thing.
May I borrow this photograph? - Yes.
- Thank you.
I'll leave you in peace.
Not in peace.
- What can I do for you? - This receipt is for one of your rentals.
Yesterday's date.
No, I didn't handle this.
I was at my other branch till noon.
This is for that young man Gabriel McEnery.
I hope he's not in trouble.
- He doesn't have to worry about that.
- Glad to hear it.
He's a nice lad.
First time he came in, he wanted an outfit to take his girl to a dance.
All he had was $21.
Said he'd settle for the top half.
Liked him so much, I threw in the lot.
He asked me if I'd give him a discount if he didn't rent the shoes.
- He said he didn't need shoes? - He said he had his own shoes.
- Who was on duty yesterday? - That'd be Antonio.
- Antonio! - Sir? - Do you have records, measurements? - Of course.
- Yes, sir? - This gentleman is from the police.
He wants to ask you something.
You rented this suit and these shoes yesterday? Oh! Yes! He was here in the morning.
Before we opened, he was here waiting.
He want suit, he want quick.
- He was, uh - Excited.
Yes, yes.
Holding music in his hands.
- And he was doing this.
- Conducting.
So he sit down, doing this.
I go get suit.
I come over to get suit, but - Oh, here we are.
- Oh, excuse me, sir.
No shoe size.
I ask him shoe size, he no hear.
He busy doing you know, music business.
So, he no hear, he no say, I guess shoe size.
I put shoes in bag, he Coat, 38, regular.
Waist, 32.
Neck, 15½.
No shoe size.
Could I borrow this card and these shoes for a couple of days? - No problem.
- Thank you, Antonio.
Thank both of you gentlemen.
It is a pleasure doing business with you.
Brass, please try not to fall asleep, gentlemen.
Oliver, I need that oboe.
Let's try it once more.
What the blazes is g? Oh, it's you.
Good morning.
You've just ruined a perfectly good take.
Well, it wasn't intentional, sir.
I was just getting this rental card out of my pocket.
Proper decorum is required at these sessions.
Although it'd be foolish of me to expect that of you, being as you're little acquainted with the more sophisticated music.
However, you're here, and let's welcome you properly.
- Please, join me.
- I don't wanna interrupt.
Not at all! Come, come, come come.
Allow me to introduce Lieutenant Columbo of the Los Angeles Police Department.
And, being a Columbo, I would suspect Italian? Oh, I know that one, sir.
Can I ask you folks something? Would you think it strange that a cop from the LAPD wouldn't appreciate the music of Tch - What is that, sir? - Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture", sir.
That's the one.
Would you think that strange? Be strange if you'd ever heard of Tchaikovsky.
And another thing.
You folks, you play music for the movies.
And Mr Crawford here, he won the big prize for one of them.
Isn't that so, sir? Indeed.
With the help of my esteemed colleagues.
But the funny thing is, when someone knows that I saw a picture and they ask me did I like the music, I never remember the music.
You only remember the music when it's bad.
Unless, of course, it's a musical like Oklahoma! Sound of Music.
But when music for the movies is done as it ought to be, you never remember it.
But you do recall what it depicts.
Excuse me, Chris.
I'll play you a little something here and you tell me what you see while it's happening.
Shower A knife A woman being knifed - And the title? - Uh Something about being nuts Psycho! Psycho.
Boy, scary.
Imagine it to this.
Not one person would've screamed in that theatre.
Now, this.
The fish the fish The fish picture Jaws! Jaws.
Yes! - Nathaniel.
- Yes, Mr Crawford? Let's see if our friend can guess the title of this one.
Play a section of the concert we recorded last night.
- Uh, but I'm afraid - Just play it.
After Sidney's introduction.
Yes, sir.
Cut! Cut! You didn't tell me this was a marred recording.
I was going to, but there wasn't a chance with the interruption last night.
Don't let it happen again.
Everything's all right today.
The stage is clean.
Very good.
I think, perhaps, we could have an early lunch.
Let me see you back here at one o'clock.
Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.
Now, Lieutenant.
I'm sorry about that.
I'm sure you haven't been brought here solely by your love of music.
You being so close to Mr McEnery, I thought maybe you'd be able to help.
- There's something that's puzzling me.
- Mm.
What would that be? Well, I went round to Mr McEnery's apartment and I saw a bunch of photographs there, and in every one he's wearing sneakers.
That was his way.
He's what I would call an informal dresser.
He wore sneakers even with a tuxedo, sir.
- Surely not.
- Oh, yes, sir.
When he was with you.
Uh It's hard to see, sir, but, uh I brought you a magnifying glass.
How extraordinary.
Being in dark colours, they're very easy to miss unless you're really looking.
So I see.
I never did notice them.
What an eccentric lad he was.
See, but last night, sir, he was wearing these, and I've been racking my brains trying to figure out, why did he change his habit? - He stopped doing it.
- Stopped what, sir? Last night was to be the most extraordinary night of his entire life.
He was to conduct an orchestra before a live audience.
Do you imagine he would turn up improperly dressed on such a night? Yes, that might explain it.
But it doesn't explain this, sir.
You see this, sir? No shoe size at the tuxedo rental place.
- So? - So what, sir? He was changing his life.
He was changing his habits.
So he told them he'd have dress shoes for a change and they gave them to him.
- I bet he was in a rush.
- So they said, sir.
Always on the go, Gabriel.
Although why they overlooked entering his shoe size is quite beyond me.
- Ask them.
- I'll do that, sir.
I'm sorry to intrude upon your time.
Uh I enjoyed the music.
You learn something new every day, sir.
I'll be on my way.
Thank you, sir.
Don't mention it.
He wore size nine in sneakers.
Did he? Fascinating.
Got tied up a bit down there, fellas.
Sorry to keep you waiting.
- Any luck? - Nothing.
- We searched every inch of the place.
- It doesn't make sense.
It wasn't where he fell and it's not up here.
Where is it? This thing has got hinges on both sides and a split in the middle.
Sergeant, you got that fancy penknife? I'm never without it.
I could write a book on what I've used this for.
Yeah, well, I think you got another chapter coming up.
This slit looks under a half-inch.
Give me something to pull it up.
Uh Here.
Try this.
This is a deep hole, here.
What is this? It's before my time, but it was used to make a movie once.
An elevator to bring up the camera.
It hasn't been used since.
Who would know about this? The camera guys, I guess, if you could find them.
You know who would know? Mr Ritter.
He's made all his movies here.
He knows the place backwards.
- Get him on your phone, Sergeant.
- What's his number? Let's see.
That's a direct line.
Mr Ritter, please.
This is Lieutenant Columbo, LAPD calling.
Thank you.
Mr Ritter? Here's the lieutenant.
What's the thunderclap? That was just the iron door on the roof of stage 28.
That damn thing.
There's a story about that.
- I wish you could tell me about it.
- I'd be glad to, but I'm in the middle of a script conference.
Should go on pretty late.
- Could you stop by my office about nine? - I'll be there, sir.
- They'll tell you where I'm at at the gate.
- Thank you very much.
Well done, Gabriel.
The guy who had this built was the golden-haired saviour of the studio.
They ran into a string of duds, then out of nowhere comes this guy's first movie.
It made a fortune.
After that, anything he wanted was his.
The budget - no limit.
He went nuts.
He has this thing built for one shot.
I saw it go up, couldn't believe it.
There had to be a half a dozen ways of doing it at one tenth the price, but like with a lot of youngsters, when success hits, it goes right to their heads.
This elevator shot is typical.
Anyway, he calls the thing Rest in Peace and that's where it went.
Down the toilet.
Total disaster.
It was in the video stores a week after it opened.
- What happened to him? - Curtains.
Couldn't get arrested at any studio.
The last I heard he was directing an episode of some crummy sitcom.
- This shaft goes all the way to the roof? - Yeah.
- With the elevator inside? - Right.
- Where's the elevator? - Come on downstairs.
I'll show you.
There's the baby.
The guy put in a camera, machine gun, couple of lights, and rode it up to the roof to shoot the bad guys.
I can't think what use this could be to you.
- We're looking at a homicide.
- Homicide, huh? - That's up my alley.
What's the premise? - What? The premise.
It's why you do the thing.
It's how you start a script.
Well, I don't know about your scripts, but this wasn't an accident.
I don't get it.
Everybody liked that kid.
You see those buttons? There's dust and cobwebs everywhere.
None on those two buttons.
And that crate's been moved recently.
Look at the scratch marks in the dust.
- But nobody's used this thing in years.
- Well, we'll soon see.
What did I tell you? Maybe.
And maybe not.
See, this dust is all messed up.
- You found a clue? - That's a good question, Mr Ritter.
I love clues.
Me too.
Please, stay.
Care for some coffee? No, thank you.
I'm wide awake enough already.
I understand that feeling.
- Please, sit down.
- Thank you.
Miss Rebecca, I know that this is a bad time for you, but it's it's something we cops have to do.
Forgive me for asking, but did you see Gabriel yesterday? We were together until he left for the studio.
I, um I walked him to his car.
I gave him a kiss and a little gift.
And then off he went.
- What did you give him? - A baton.
For conducting? So this baton was with Gabriel in Mr Crawford's bungalow? That's where he went to rehearse by himself.
Is this the baton? Yes.
Yes, I I wrote something on here.
Something personal that he would appreciate.
May I? Rebecca, I'd like to borrow this.
- It's something I would like to keep.
- I'll make sure you get it back.
Did Gabriel conduct in public? Actually last night's concert was to be his first time.
Why is that? He was under the control of Crawford for so long, I I think Crawford felt guilty and threw him a crumb.
A crumb.
- For all the music Gabriel wrote for him.
- Like what? For instance, The Killer.
The music for the big award? Every note of it was Gabriel's.
Is there a copy of that? This is where he kept all his completed scores.
He kept it in a brown envelope.
It isn't here.
- Where is it? - It's gone, Rebecca.
I guarantee that guy in there will tell us "death by impact".
If he was alive when he went over that roof, I guarantee you he was unconscious.
It's still death by impact.
I'm saying that when he was on the roof, he was either dead or unconscious.
- What difference does that make? - No difference.
Unless I can prove it.
- Ah.
You're early, Lieutenant.
- How you doing, Doc? I wanna see the file on Gabriel McEnery.
Came in a couple nights ago.
McEnery Gabriel McEnery Right this way.
McEnery Here we are, Gabriel McEnery.
"Cause of death: impact from a fall.
" - Death on impact.
- That's what I told you.
"Time of death: 8:02pm, approximate.
" "Body blood: small amount of alcohol, otherwise clean.
" "Head: two fractures.
" "Impact blood confirms time of death.
" - It's all right there, Lieutenant.
- I'd like to see the body.
It's number 14.
Take a peek at this.
Has that been analysed? I assume that comes under "impact blood".
Maybe yes, maybe no.
That blood was dry when I examined the body at the scene.
The head blood wasn't.
The head blood was wet.
Check it out for me.
- I wasn't on duty.
Maybe it was missed.
- Get a reading on it as soon as you can.
Oh, Sarge, find out when Mr Crawford is gonna start that music recording today.
Yes, sir.
- How's it going? - Not a fingerprint in sight.
Ah, that doesn't surprise me.
Keep at it.
Anyone got a flashlight? Hey, Mick.
Give the lieutenant your flashlight.
Hey, guys.
Get ready for a blackout.
Everyone with a flashlight, switch it on.
What do you think, Sarge? Won't be the first time you got me foxed.
All right, Sarge.
I think we're done here now.
- What do you think of that, Sidney? - I'm coming out.
- You all right, Findlay? - Oh, never better.
You know me, I call a spade a spade.
- That music stinks.
- Does it, now? It's not your usual touch.
Maybe you got something on your mind.
My problem is, I got a big premiere date coming up and I need it finished pronto.
Any suggestions? Yeah.
We've had the killing, we've got the bad guy.
Now we're into romance at the end, not this thick pea soup.
- I can give you romance.
- Good.
Fix it.
Run the guys into overtime, I'll pay.
I need it tomorrow morning.
Don't depress me, baby.
Make me happy.
Excuse me, sir.
Do you have the time? - I'm sorry? What did you say? - The time, if you have it.
- My watch is playing tricks on me again.
- 3:21 and 11 seconds.
- Sure that's right? - It's never wrong.
It's digital.
I got this old-fashioned winding sort.
You forget sometimes to wind it.
Speaking of time, I have things to do.
Excuse me.
Me too, sir.
I gotta solve a homicide.
A homicide? What kind of homicide would that be? Ah, the usual.
- Somebody killed somebody.
- And who killed whom? I'm pretty sure Mr McEnery was the victim, and I was hoping you would help me, sir, find the person who did it.
I don't see how I can possibly guide you.
Well, there's some music to do with it, sir, and you're the best authority I know on that subject.
- I really need some help.
- I have some time tomorrow.
It'd have to be today.
We wouldn't want the person to evade us.
- Slippery customer, is it? - Ah, you never know, sir.
Well, this is very inconvenient.
I have a few minutes, but I'll have to speak to the members of the orchestra.
- You can wait here if you like.
- Well, I'd like to go too.
If you don't mind.
Please yourself.
Ladies and gentlemen.
As you can see, our friend from the police department is still with us.
You'll grow to like him - every time he arrives, you get a break.
Make the best of it.
There's lots of overtime.
It'll be a long night.
Uh, sir.
The gentleman at the controls.
His name? - That'd be the sound mixer, Nathaniel.
- Nathaniel? Nathaniel! Would you be kind enough to stay? We'll need him, sir, for some of the music.
Enjoy yourself, folks.
We won't be long.
- Intending to take up conducting? - Oh, no, sir.
No, that's not my line.
You'll be glad to hear that I found that noise that messed up the recording at the concert.
Excuse me, sir.
Bring it up, Sarge.
- What the blazes is that? - All in good time, sir.
Nathaniel, play that section of the concert with the interference on it.
Nathaniel, can you bring down the music? Thank you, Nathaniel.
Bring her down, Sarge.
Where on earth are these horrible noises coming from? That's an elevator, sir.
- An elevator? - Down below in the basement.
- Really? - Really.
That's what caused the mess-up in the recording, before the other interruption really put a stop to everything.
I always thought that was a storage area.
No doubt about it, sir.
There's an elevator there.
Would you like to see it? Might as well.
Let's put this darn thing out of action once and for all.
My theory is that this elevator was started during Mr Ritter's introduction, and it went up to the roof while you were conducting.
Come on, we'll take a ride.
That's not necessary.
I'm interested in putting it out of action.
That'll be done, sir, when we're finished.
I need your advice on some more music.
What a card you are.
How bizarre.
- Very well, but make it snappy, huh? - It'll be snappy, sir.
After you.
- Ever been to the zoo, Sarge? - Sure.
- Seen the walruses? - Yeah, cute.
That's what I think.
What do you think, sir? I can take them or leave them alone.
It won't be long now.
We can get out now.
What is this, some kind of charade? Now, sir, when Mr McEnery was up here conducting, he had this with him.
- You remember we couldn't find it? - Mm.
Well, sir, that's what made me certain that the elevator came up and it threw Mr McEnery off - the baton.
It fell inside.
Surely he would've heard the approach of the elevator and taken evasive action? And besides, see this slit? The baton could easily have slipped through there.
The handle couldn't have gotten through, sir, but that was a very good question.
Why didn't the boy hear the elevator? Now, we know, sir, that he wore sneakers, size nine.
That brings up another question.
Why on the night of his death, was he wearing shoes, size 11? There is also the question of, uh Tony! Marcia! This is Maestro Crawford.
They adore you, sir.
Big fans.
- Absolutely.
- What an honour to meet you, sir.
- How nice.
- Do you have time to? They were hurrying to the concert, sir, when Gabriel's body hit, right there.
Right in front of them.
- Marcia, you screamed, didn't you? - I did.
I screamed.
- Yeah.
Really loud.
- Yes, she screamed.
Gabriel, he fell 80 feet, four storeys, to his death - utter silence.
Why didn't he scream, sir? So we have plenty of questions.
Take this photograph.
You can relax now.
Oh, yes, sir.
Uh small drops of brown is dried blood.
Are you familiar with secobarbital, sir? Yes.
After my wife's death, it helped me to sleep.
Well, it metabolises very quickly.
We didn't find a trace of it in Gabriel's blood.
But this blood, sir, it wasn't inside the body.
It was outside.
It was over here, sir, on his hand.
He must have cut himself long before he fell off the roof, cos when I saw the blood, it was bone dry.
Plus Hold the phone, sir.
It was full of secobarbital.
So Gabriel didn't scream because he was drugged.
He was, uh He was, uh Oh, gee whizz Uh, Sergeant, what am I looking for here? - Unconscious, sir.
- Unconscious.
That's the word I was looking for.
And if you're unconscious, sir, you can't complain if someone puts shoes on your feet that are two sizes too big, and you wouldn't be aware if someone stole your house key.
Tell me, sir.
Who had a motive to steal Gabriel's original score of The Killer, which was the basis for someone winning Hollywood's highest award? Well we know who won the award.
The same person that stole Gabe's house key.
Actually, the same person that drugged him.
Because the motive to steal Gabriel's score is the same as the motive to push the button, make it go up, and throw the kid off the roof.
Which wouldn't have worked unless he were drugged because, as you said, sir, the boy would've heard the elevator.
Rebecca, please play and say these notes.
Love notes, Mr Crawford.
To Gabe from Becca, on this baton.
A gift that afternoon.
But you were too busy to notice it.
Play the other set, please.
"Dear Becca.
" "My love notes to you.
" "Always, Gabe.
" Take him away.
Thanks, everybody.
We're done.
Oh, uh Could we get you to sign an autograph? - Please, sir.
We love you.
- Of course, my dears.
Mr Columbo, you seem to be a fund of information.
Do you know of a penitentiary with a decent music programme? They tell me they once tried a brass band in San Quentin.
- Why don't you ask the judge? - Thank you.
These autographs will be worth something someday.
We could Rebecca, my wife, she always hums one tune when she's cleaning the house and it's always the same.
If you could teach me a few notes on this thing, maybe I could borrow it and I could play it for her on her next birthday.
- She'd really like that.
- Can you remember what it is? Oh.
Well, that's simple.
That's it.
OK, show me just the simple notes.
OK, right here.