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                                       Written by

                                     Paddy Chayefsky

                                      SHOOTING DRAFT




               FADE IN:

               Just east of Webster Avenue in the North Bronx, 187th Street 
               is a predominantly Italian community and the commercial avenue 
               of the neighborhood. Fruit and vegetable stands, pizzerias, 
               butcher shops, bakeries, cleaners and dyers and bars flourish. 
               It is Saturday morning around eleven o'clock -- a market 

               WOMEN, dark, gesticulative, with bulging cloth shopping bags, 
               baby carriages. MERCHANTS at their improvised street stands, 
               hawking their wares, disputing with their CUSTOMERS, roaring 
               salutations to PASSERSBY.

               In the midst of all this, CAMERA HOMES IN on a typical 

               BUTCHER SHOP.

               Delicatessens hang on the walls, wreathed with garlands of 
               garlic. PATSY, the boss, a swarthy man of sixty, is flopping 
               a chunk of beef onto the scale for the benefit of a forty-
               year-old MATRON. There are three or four other WOMEN in the 
               shop, all talking to one another. A four-year-old BOY lazily 
               chases a cat.

               The white refrigerator room door opens, and a second butcher, 
               MARTY PILLETTI, comes out carrying a large leg of lamb. Marty 
               is a mildmannered, short, stout, balding man of thirty-four. 
               His charm lies in an almost indestructible good humor. He 
               drops the leg of lamb onto the chopping block, reaches up 
               for the cleaver hanging with the other utensils over the 
               block and makes quick incisive cuts into the leg of lamb. He 
               sets the cleaver aside, picks up the saw to finish the cuts 
               as he chats with his customer, MRS. FUSARI.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         Your kid brother got married last 
                         Sunday, eh, Marty?

                              (sawing away)
                         That's right, Missus Fusari. It was 
                         a very nice affair.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         That's the big tall one, the fellow 
                         with the moustache.

                              (still sawing)
                         No, that's my other brother, Freddie. 
                         My other brother Freddie, he's been 
                         married four years already. He lives 
                         down on Webb Avenue. The one who got 
                         married Sunday, that was my little 
                         brother, Nickie.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         I thought he was a big tall fat 
                         fellow. Didn't I meet him here one 
                         time? Big tall, fat fellow, he tried 
                         to sell me life insurance?

               Marty sets the five chops on the scale, watches its weight 

                         No, that's my sister Margaret's 
                         husband, Frank. My sister Margaret, 
                         she's married to the insurance 
                         salesman, and my sister Rose, she 
                         married a contractor. They moved to 
                         Detroit last year. And my other sister 
                         Frances, she got married about two 
                         and a half years ago in Saint John's 
                         Church on Kingsbridge Avenue. Oh, 
                         that was a big affair. Well, let's 
                         see now, that'll be about a dollar-
                         seventy-nine. How's that with you?

                                     MRS. FUSARI

               Mrs. Fusari produces an old leather change purse from her 
               pocketbook and painfully extracts one single dollar bill and 
               seventy-nine cents to the penny and lays the money piece by 
               piece on the counter. From the rear of the shop a woman's 
               VOICE rings out.

                                     WOMAN'S VOICE
                         Hey, Marty, I'm inna hurry.

                         You're next right now, Missus Canduso.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         When you gonna get married, Marty? 
                         You should be ashamed of yourself. 
                         All your brothers and sisters, they 
                         all younger than you, they married 
                         and they got children. I just saw 
                         your mother inna fruit shop, and she 
                         says to me, "Hey, you know a nice 
                         girl for my boy Marty?" Watsa matter 
                         with you? That's no way. Now you get 

                         Missus Fusari, Missus Canduso over 
                         there, she's inna big hurry, and...

               Mrs. Fusari takes her parcel of meat, but apparently she 
               feels she still hasn't quite made her point.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         My son Frank, he was married when he 
                         was nineteen years old. Watsa matter 
                         with you?

                         That's swell, Missus Fusari.

                                     MRS. FUSARI
                         You should be ashamed of yourself.

               She takes her package of meat. Marty gathers up the money on 
               the counter, turns to the cash register behind him to ring 
               up the sale. Mrs. Canduso sidles up to the counter.

                                     MRS. CANDUSO
                         Marty, I want a nice, big fat pullet, 
                         about four pounds. I hear your kid 
                         brother got married last Sunday.

                         Yeah, it was a very nice affair.

                                     MRS. CANDUSO
                         Marty, you oughta be ashamed. All 
                         your kid brothers and sisters married 
                         and have children. When you gonna 
                         get married?


               A TV set on the wall. Mel Allen, smoking a White Owl cigar, 
               is recapping the baseball game that has just finished as 
               Marty comes in.

                              (to two YOUNG MEN 
                         What happened?

                                     YOUNG MAN
                         The Yanks took two.

                         Any homers?

               The Young Men exit without answering. Marty moves further 
               into the bar, which is crowded with locals, smoky, noisy. 
               ACROSS GROUP at bar with Marty in the background approaching, 
               we see a group consisting of RALPH, who wears a suit and 
               tie, the only man in the room who isn't in shirtsleeves or a 
               Basque shirt; JOE, thirty-two, hunched over a girlie magazine; 
               a KID, twenty-two, studying the magazine over Joe's shoulder.

                              (to the Kid)
                         Angie come in yet?

               The Kid indicates a booth where a small wasp of a man, mid-
               thirties, is sitting, bent over the sports pages of the Daily 

                         So these two girls come over to the 

                         Hey, Ang'...

                         ...and they sit down right next to 

                         You want a beer, Ang'?

                         I look over at this one nexta me, 
                         not bad, about thirty-five -- Hiya, 

                         Hiya, Ralph...

                         ...I been talking about two nurses 
                         Leo and me picked up in a bar on 
                         Seventy-First Street.

                              (to Bartender)
                         Hey, Lou, gimme two bottles-a beer...

                         So, Marty, lemme tell you about these 
                         nurses, Marty...

                              (to Joe studying his 
                         Waddaya read there, Joe?

                                     AD LIB VOICE
                         Hey, Lou, turn the television off!

                         Turns out these two girls are nurses 
                         in some hospital on a Hundred and 
                         Fourth Street...

                         They shouldn't sell magazines like 
                         this on a public newsstand...

                         That's the truth.

                              (turning a page)
                         Can you imagine the effect this has 
                         on adolescents?

                         So, Marty, let me tell you about 
                         these nurses...

                              (reaching for two 
                              bottles of beer 
                              proffered by the 
                         What nurses?

                         The nurses Leo and me picked up last 
                         night. We got a date with them 

                              (moving off to Angie's 
                         You still owe me ten bucks from last 
                         week, if that's what you're working 
                         up to.

               Joe turns another page in the girlie magazine.

                         Now that's something, eh?

                         I used to go out with a girl like 

                                     THE KID
                         You should live so long.

               THE BOOTH.

               Marty joins his friend Angie and pushes a bottle of beer at 
               him, pulling one of the pages loose from the paper Angie is 
               reading. For a moment, the two men sit quietly, each poring 
               over his separate piece of newspaper.

                              (without looking up)
                         So waddaya feel like doing tonight?

                         I don't know, Ang'. Wadda you feel 
                         like doing?

                         Well, we oughta do something. It's 
                         Saturday night. I don't wanna go 
                         bowling like last Saturday. How about 
                         calling up that big girl we picked 
                         up inna movies about a month ago in 
                         the RKO Chester?

                              (not very interested)
                         Which one was that?

                         That big girl that was sitting in 
                         front of us with the skinny friend.

                         Oh, yeah.

                         We took them home alla way out in 
                         Brooklyn. Her name was Mary Feeney. 
                         What do you say? You think I oughta 
                         give her a ring? I'll take the skinny 

                         She probably got a date by now, Angie.

                         Well, let's call her up. What can we 

                         I didn't like her, Angie. I don't 
                         feel like calling her up.

                         Well, what do you feel like doing 

                         I don't know. What do you feel like 

                         Well, we're back to that, huh? I say 
                         to you, "What do you feel like doing 
                         tonight?" And you say to me, "I don't 
                         know, what do you feel like doing?" 
                         And then we wind up sitting around 
                         your house with a coupla cansa beer, 
                         watching Sid Caesar on television. 
                         Well, I tell you what I feel like 
                         doing. I feel like calling up this 
                         Mary Feeney. She likes you.

                         What makes you say that?

                         I could see she likes you.

                         Yeah, sure.

                              (half-rising in his 
                         I'll call her up.

                         You call her up for yourself, Angie. 
                         I don't feel like calling her up.

               Angie sits down again. They both return to their papers for 
               a moment. Then Angie looks up again.

                         How about going downa Seventy-Second 
                         Street, see what we can find? Ralph 
                         says you have to beat them off with 

               Marty makes a wry face at the suggestion.

                         Boy, you're getting to be a real 
                         drag, you know that?

                         Angie, I'm thirty-four years old. I 
                         been looking for a girl every Saturday 
                         night of my life. I'm tired of 
                         looking. Everybody's always telling 
                         me to get married. Get married. Get 
                         married. Don't you think I wanna get 
                         married? I wanna get married. They 
                         drive me crazy. Now, I don't wanna 
                         wreck your Saturday night for you, 
                         Angie. You wanna go somewhere, you 
                         go ahead. I don't wanna go.

                         My old lady, every word outta her 
                         mouth, when you gonna get married?

                         My mother, boy, she drives me crazy.

               Angie leans back in his seat, scowls at the paper napkin 
               container on the booth table. Marty returns to the sports 
               page. For a moment, a silence hangs between them.

                         So what do you feel like doing 

                              (without looking up)
                         I don't know. What do you feel like 

                              (from phone booth in 
                         Marty, your mother wants you onna 

                              (rising in response; 
                              to Angie)
                         Come on over about half past seven, 
                         we'll think of something.
                              (settles into the 
                              phone booth, picks 
                              up the receiver)
                         Hello, Ma, what's the matter?


               It's a typical lower-middle-class Italian home, and MRS. 
               PILLETTI is on the phone, a round, dark woman. Beyond her, 
               in the dining room, we can see a young couple -- THOMAS, 
               Marty's cousin, and his wife VIRGINIA, seated at the dining 
               room table.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (voice lowered)
                         Hello, Marty, when you coming home? 
                         Where you now? Because your cousin 
                         Thomas and his wife Virginia, they're 
                         here. They had another fight with 
                         your Aunt Catherine... I don't know...

               THE BAR.

                              (in the phone booth)
                         I'm coming home right now, Ma. I'll 
                         be home in about two minutes. Tell 
                         Thomas stick around, I wanna see him 
                         about something.


               Mrs. Pilletti is on the phone.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Okay, you come on home, okay.

               She hangs up, braces herself, turns and starts back to Thomas 
               and Virginia in the dining room.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         He coming home right now.

                         So what happened, Aunt Theresa, about 
                         the milk bottle was my mother-in-
                         law, she comes inna kitchen, Aunt 
                         Theresa, and she begins poking her 
                         head over my shoulder here and poking 
                         her head over my shoulder there, so 
                         then she begins telling me how I 
                         waste money and how I can't cook, 
                         and how I'm raising my baby all wrong, 
                         so she got me so nervous, I spilled 
                         some milk I was making for the baby...

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She was here, you know, Wednesday, 
                         and I said, "Catherine, my sister..."

                         So she say, "You're spilling the 
                         milk." So she kept talking about 
                         these coupla drops of milk I spilled, 
                         so she got me so mad, so I said, 
                         "Mama, you wanna see me really spill 
                         some milk?" So I took the bottle, 
                         and I threw it against the door. I 
                         didn't throw it at her. That's just 
                         something she made up. She goes around 
                         telling everybody I threw the bottla 
                         milk at her. I didn't throw it 
                         anywheres near her. Well, I was sorry 
                         right away, you know, but she ran 
                         outta the house.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, I don't know what you want me 
                         to do, Virginia. If you want me, 
                         I'll go talk to her tonight.

               Thomas and Virginia suddenly frown and look down at their 
               hands as if of one mind.

                         Well, I'll tell you, Aunt Theresa...

                         Lemme tell it, Tommy.


                         We want you to do a very big favor 
                         for us, Aunt Theresa.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Aunt Theresa, you got this big house 
                         here. I mean, you got this big house 
                         just for you and Marty. And I thought 
                         maybe Tommy's mother could come here 
                         and live with you and Marty.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Because I called up Tommy's brother 
                         Joe, and I said, "Joe, she's driving 
                         me crazy. Why don't you take her for 
                         a couple of years?" And he said, "Oh 
                         no!" I know I sound like a terrible 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         No, Virginia, I know how you feel.

                              (on the verge of tears)
                         I just can't stand it any more! Every 
                         minute of the day! Do this! Do that! 
                         I don't have ten minutes privacy 
                         with my husband! We can't even have 
                         a fight! We don't have no privacy! 
                         Everybody's miserable in our house!

                         All right, Ginnie, don't get so 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She's right. She's right. Young 
                         husband and wife, they should have 
                         their own home. And my sister 
                         Catherine, she's my sister, but I 
                         gotta admit, she's an old goat. And 
                         plenty-a times in my life, I feel 
                         like throwing the milk bottle at her 
                         myself. And I tell you now, as far 
                         as I'm concerned, if Catherine wantsa 
                         come live here with me and Marty, 
                         it's all right with me.

               Virginia promptly bursts into tears.

                              (not far from tears 
                              himself, lowers his 
                         That's very nice-a you, Aunt Theresa.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         We gotta ask Marty, of course.


                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You just sit here, I gotta turn the 
                         fire on under the cooking.
                              (exits into the kitchen)

                              (having mastered her 
                         That's very nice-a you, Aunt Theresa.

                              (calling to his aunt 
                              in the kitchen)
                         How's Marty been lately, Aunt Theresa?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Oh, he's fine. You know a nice girl 
                         he can marry?

               She comes back into the dining room, wiping her hands on a 
               kitchen towel.

                         Oh, he'll get married, don't worry, 
                         Aunt Theresa.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (sitting down again)
                         Well, I don't know. He sits arounna 
                         house alla time. You know a place he 
                         can go where he can find a bride?

                         Well, there's the Stardust Ballroom. 
                         That's a kind of a big dance hall. 
                         Every Saturday night, it's just loaded 
                         with girls. It's a nice place to go. 
                         You pay seventy-seven cents. It used 
                         to be seventy-seven cents. It must 
                         be about a buck and half now. And 
                         you go in and you ask some girl to 
                         dance. That's how I met Virginia. 
                         Nice, respectable place to meet girls. 
                         You tell Marty, Aunt Theresa, you 
                         tell him, "Go to the Stardust 
                         Ballroom. It's loaded with tomatoes."

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (committing the line 
                              to memory)
                         The Stardust Ballroom. It's loaded 
                         with tomatoes.


                         This is very nice-a you, Aunt Theresa, 
                         what you're doing for us, and don't 
                         think we don't appreciate...

               The SOUND of the DOOR BEING UNLATCHED in the kitchen can be 
               heard. Mrs. Pilletti promptly rises.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         He's here.

               She hurries into...

               THE KITCHEN.

               Marty comes into the kitchen from the rear porch.

                         Hello, Ma.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Marty, Thomas and Virginia are here. 
                         They had another fight with your 
                         Aunt Catherine. So they ask me, would 
                         it be all right if Catherine come to 
                         live with us. So I said, all right 
                         with me, but we have to ask you. 
                         Marty, she's a lonely old lady. Nobody 
                         wants her. Everybody's throwing her 
                         outta their house...

                         Sure, Ma, it's okay with me.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You gotta good heart.

               She turns and leads the way back into the dining room. Marty 

               DINING ROOM.

               Thomas has risen. Mrs. Pilletti and Marty come in.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         He says okay, it's all right Catherine 
                         comes here.

                         Oh, Marty, thanks a lot. That really 
                         takes a load offa my mind.

                         Oh, we got plenny-a room here.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Sure! Sure! It's gonna be nice! It's 
                         gonna be nice! I'll come over tonight 
                         to your house, and I talk with 
                         Catherine, and you see, everything 
                         is gonna work out all right.

                         I just wanna thank you people again, 
                         because the situation was just 
                         becoming impossible.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Siddown, Thomas, siddown.

               She exits into the kitchen. Virginia follows her to the 
               kitchen door, where the two women ad-lib the following lines 
               over the ensuing scene between Marty and Thomas.

                         I'm sorry we gotta rush like this...

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         That's all right, that's all right...

                         On accounta...

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I'm gonna see you tonight...

               Over this, Thomas talks to Marty.

                         Marty, I don't know how to tell you 
                         how much I appreciate what you and 
                         your mother are doing, because the 
                         kinda thing was happening in our 
                         house was Virginia was in the kitchen 
                         making some milk for the baby. So my 
                         mother comes in...

                         Tommy, I promised the babysitter six 

                         Tommy, before you go, I wonder if 
                         you gimme a little advice.

                         Sure, what?

                         You're the accountant inna family, 
                         and I figure you might know about 
                         these things. My boss wantsa sell 
                         his shop to me. His kids are all 
                         married, you know, and he and his 
                         wife live alone, and they wanna move 
                         out to California where his daughter 
                         lives, so he wantsa sell his shop. 
                         He wants five thousand dollars down, 
                         although I think I can knock him 
                         downa four...

                              (off-screen, from 
                              deep in the kitchen)

                         I'll see you at mass tomorrow. We'll 
                         sit down and we'll discuss the whole 

                         All right, I'll see you, Thomas, 
                         because he wants an answer by Monday.

                         Sure. Thanks a lot about my mother. 
                         We'll work out some arrangement, 
                         because naturally I want to pay...

                         Don't worry about it.

                         No, listen, that's my mother, I'm 
                         gonna pay for her...

                         Goodby, Marty!

                         Goodby, Virginia! See you soon!

               Thomas has moved off to join his wife in the kitchen where 
               we can hear them exchanging final protestations and goodbys 
               with Mrs. Pilletti. Marty sits at the table, hands folded in 
               front of him, stolid, pensive.

               THE KITCHEN. DUSK.

               Mrs. Pilletti bends over her steaming kettles. Through the 
               window we see evening is gathering.

               MARTY'S BEDROOM.

               It's a small room with bed, chest of drawers, religious 
               pictures, etc. Marty sits squatly on the edge of the bed, 
               absorbed in thought. He stands, moves out into...


               ...and down that into...

               THE DINING ROOM.

      lit by the overhead neo-Tiffany lampshade and the 
               beaded old-fashioned lamps. He crosses to the kitchen door, 
               looks in on his mother, cooking away, turns, crosses back 

               THE LIVING ROOM.

               He closes the sliding doors that separate the living and 
               dining rooms. He extracts a small black address book from 
               his hip pocket, flips through it, finds the page he wants, 
               studies it intently.

               He sits on the chair by the phone, dials.

                              (with a vague pretense 
                              at good diction)
                         Hello, is this Mary Feeney?... Could 
                         I speak to Miss Mary Feeney?... Just 
                         tell her an old friend...

               He waits again. With his free hand he wipes the gathering 
               sweat on his brow.

                         ...Oh, hello there, is this Mary 
                         Feeney? Hello there, this is Marty 
                         Pilletti. I wonder if you recall 
                         me... Well, I'm kind of a stocky 
                         guy. The last time we met was in a 
                         movie, the RKO Chester. You was with 
                         another girl, and I was with a friend 
                         of mine named Angie. This was about 
                         a month ago...

               The girl apparently doesn't remember him. A sort of panic 
               begins to seize Marty. His voice rises a little.

                         The RKO Chester in Westchester Square. 
                         You was sitting in front of us, and 
                         we was annoying you, and you got 
                         mad, and... I'm the fellow who works 
                         in a butcher shop... Come on, you 
                         know who I am!... That's right, we 
                         went to Howard Johnson's and we had 
                         hamburgers. You hadda milkshake... 
                         Yeah, that's right. I'm the stocky 
                         one, the heavy-set feller... Well, 
                         I'm glad you recall me, because I 
                         hadda swell time that night, and I 
                         was just wondering how everything 
                         was with you. How's everything?... 
                         That's swell... Yeah, well, I'll 
                         tell you why I called...I was figuring 
                         on taking in a movie tonight, and I 
                         was wondering if you and your friend 
                         would care to see a movie tonight 
                         with me and my friend...
                              (his eyes are closed 
                         Yeah, tonight. I know it's pretty 
                         late to call for a date, but I didn't 
                         know myself, till... Yeah, I know, 
                         well how about... Yeah, I know, well 
                         maybe next Saturday night. You free 
                         next Saturday night?... Well, how 
                         about the Saturday after that?... 
                         Yeah, I know... Yeah... Yeah... Oh, 
                         I understand, I mean...

               He hangs up, sits for a moment, then rises, opens the sliding 
               doors, enters...

               THE DINING ROOM.

               He sits at the heavy, wooden table with its white-on-white 
               table cloth.

               THE KITCHEN.

               Mrs. Pilletti ladles portions of food from the steaming 
               kettles onto a plate that she brings into...

               THE DINING ROOM.

               ...and sets it down before her son. Without a word, he picks 
               up his fork and spoon and plunges into the mountain of 
               spaghetti, adds cheese, eats away. Mrs. Pilletti takes her 
               seat, folds her hands on the table, and sits watching Marty 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         So what are you gonna do tonight, 

                         I don't know, Ma. I'm all knocked 
                         out. I may just hang arounna house.

               Mrs. Pilletti nods a couple of times. A moment of silence.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Why don't you go to the Stardust 

               This gives Marty pause. He looks up.


                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I say, why don't you go to the 
                         Stardust Ballroom? It's loaded with 

               Marty regards his mother for a moment.

                         It's loaded with what?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Ha! Who told you about the Stardust 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Thomas. He told me it was a very 
                         nice place.

                         Oh, Thomas. Ma, it's just a big dance 
                         hall, and that's all it is. I been 
                         there a hundred times. Loaded with 
                         tomatoes. Boy, you're funny, Ma.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Marty, I don't want you hang arounna 
                         house tonight. I want you to go take 
                         a shave and go out and dance.

                         Ma, when are you gonna give up? You 
                         gotta bachelor on your hands. I ain't 
                         never gonna get married.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You gonna get married.

                         Sooner or later, there comes a point 
                         in a man's life when he gotta face 
                         some facts, and one fact I gotta 
                         face is that whatever it is that 
                         women like, I ain't got it. I chased 
                         enough girls in my life. I went to 
                         enough dances. I got hurt enough. I 
                         don't wanna get hurt no more. I just 
                         called a girl just now, and I got a 
                         real brush-off, boy. I figured I was 
                         past the point of being hurt, but 
                         that hurt. Some stupid woman who I 
                         didn't even wanna call up. She gave 
                         me the brush. I don't wanna go to 
                         the Stardust Ballroom because all 
                         that ever happened to me there was 
                         girls made me feel like I was a bug. 
                         I got feelings, you know. I had enough 
                         pain. No, thank you.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Ma, I'm gonna stay home and watch 
                         Jackie Gleason.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You gonna die without a son.

                         So I'll die without a son.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Put on your blue suit...

                         Blue suit, gray suit, I'm still a 
                         fat man. A fat ugly man.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You not ugly.

                              (his voice rising)
                         I'm ugly... I'm ugly! I'm UGLY!

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Ma! Leave me alone!

               He stands abruptly, his face pained and drawn. He makes half-
               formed gestures to his mother, but he can't find words at 
               the moment. He turns and marches a few paces away, turns to 
               his mother again.

                         Ma, waddaya want from me?! Waddaya 
                         want from me?! I'm miserable enough 
                         as it is! Leave me alone! I'll go to 
                         the Stardust Ballroom! I'll put onna 
                         blue suit and I'll go! And you know 
                         what I'm gonna get for my trouble? 
                         Heartache! A big night of heartache!

               Sullenly, he marches back to his seat, sits down, picks up 
               his fork, plunges it into the spaghetti, stuffs a mouthful 
               into his mouth, and chews vigorously for a moment. It is 
               impossible for him to remain angry long. After a while, he 
               is shaking his head.

                         Loaded with tomatoes...boy, that's 

               He plunges his fork in again, starts to eat. Mrs. Pilletti 
               watches Marty anxiously as we...

               FADE OUT.

               FADE IN


               West Farms Square is a big street in the Bronx, filled with 
               stores, bowling alleys and bars. Cars push along between the 
               pillars of the elevated subway structure. The NOISE of the 
               subway trains ROARS by overhead every few moments.

               CAMERA FINDS and ESTABLISHES the Stardust Ballroom. It 
               occupies the second floor of a large, dirty gray three-story 
               building. It is a hot June night, and the windows are open 
               for ventilation purposes. MUSIC manufactured by Dave 
               Greenglass and His Band blends with the NOISES of the street.


               MUSIC plays in the background. CAMERA views CLARA, a plain 
               girl in her late twenties; her younger sister, MILLIE, 
               prettier; Millie's fiance ANDY, 30; and a second young man 
               DR. KEEGAN, also 30, who is a resident at Fordham Hospital. 
               They are all huddled over a cigarette machine near the street 

                              (in a low voice)
                         I told you she wasn't especially 
                         attractive, but that she had a good 
                         deal of charm, and she's really a 
                         real nice girl...

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                              (extracting cigarettes 
                              from the machine)
                         She's all right, Andy. It's just 
                         that I get one Saturday night off 
                         every three weeks, and I was expecting 
                         something better, that's all.

                         I told you she wasn't attractive...

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         You told me that she was a little 
                         tall, but that she wasn't bad looking 
                         at all.

                         Millie's been after me to fix her up 
                         with a date, so I...

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         All right, I'm having a fair time. 
                         It's just that I get one Saturday 
                         night off in three weeks, and I wanted 
                         to wind up with something tonight.

               They join the two girls waiting for them and start up the 
               broad stairway to the second floor. They are halfway up, 
               when two GIRLS come in at the top of the stairs and start 
               down. Dr. Keegan, who is holding Clara's arm, looks up, nods.


               This is a small, carpeted lobby with TICKET TAKER in booth, 
               a cloak room and rest rooms. Painted posters on the walls 
               announce coming events and caution against smoking. There 
               are also large blow-ups of musicians who had played this 
               ballroom at one time and went on to bigger things. About six 
               or seven PEOPLE congregate in the lobby, engaged in various 
               indifferent activities.

               CAMERA ANGLES include the swinging doors, as Clara, Andy, 
               Millie and Dr. Keegan come in. As they enter, the doors to 
               the ballroom proper are pushed out, and a GIRL in a black 
               dress, quite pretty, comes in. She starts across the anteroom 
               toward the cloak room, when Dr. Keegan calls out suddenly to 

                                     DR. KEEGAN

               The girl turns. Recognition floods her face.

                         Herbie! Wadda you doing here?!

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         I came up to dance, wadda you think? 
                         You here with somebody?

                         I'm just here with another girl.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         Where you going now?

                         I'm just gonna get my cigarettes. I 
                         left them in my coat.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         I'll see you around.

                         I'll see you.

               She turns and continues on to the cloak room. Dr. Keegan 
               turns to Clara.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         That's a girl used to know.

               BALLROOM, LOUNGE.

               A fairly long room, lined on one side by a bar and on the 
               other by cheap leatherette booths. It is brightly lit and 
               crowded. There is a constant movement in and out of the 
               lounge. At the far end of the lounge, there are two large 
               iron fire doors open to allow the heat to flow out. Dance 
               MUSIC from dance floor.

               Clara, Dr. Keegan, Millie and Andy come into the lounge and 
               form a little group in the midst of moving PASSERSBY around 
               them. A kind of strange excitement has begun to enter Dr. 
               Keegan. He stands with the others, but his attention is 
               devoted to ogling the passing GIRLS, occasionally looking 
               back to the doors leading to the anteroom.

                         Boy, it's packed in here.

                              (to Clara)
                         Some of these kids are awful young. 
                         Aren't you afraid you'll bump into 
                         one of your students?

                              (nervously looking at 
                              Dr. Keegan)
                         I wouldn't think so. I teach out in 

                         You been up here before, Clara?

                         Yeah, twice.

                         Shall we try to get a table and get 
                         something to drink or shall we just 
                         go in and start dancing?

                         Hey, Herbie...

               Dr. Keegan doesn't seem to hear.

                         Hey, Herbie...

                                     DR. KEEGAN

                         You wanna have a drink before we 
                         start dancing?

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         Listen. You people go grab a table. 
                         I'll be back inna minute. I'll be 
                         right back.

               He turns and moves quickly through the crowded lounge, back 
               to the swinging doors leading into the anteroom. CAMERA STAYS 
               with Clara, Millie and Andy staring after him.

                         So what do you say, Clara? Wanna see 
                         if we can get a table?

                         All right.

               They turn and move toward the booths.


               The dance floor is fairly dark. A romantic effect is achieved 
               by papier-mâché over the chandeliers. Around the walls are 
               the stag lines -- the MEN and waiting GIRLS. They stand singly 
               or in small uneasy groups. There is constant flux and 

               CAMERA DOLLIES slowly past the stag line, moving past faces, 
               short, fat, tall, thin stags. Some pretend indifference. 
               Some exhibit patent hunger.

               CAMERA HOLDS ANGLING to include Marty, Angie near the end of 
               the stag line. They are freshly shaved and groomed.

               MARTY AND ANGIE.

               They are leaning against the wall smoking, watching their 
               more fortunate brethren on the floor in the background.

                         Not a bad crowd tonight, you know?

                         There was one nice-looking one there 
                         inna black dress and beads, but she's 
                         dancing now.

                              (looking off-screen)
                         There's a nice-looking little short 
                         one for you right now.

                              (following his gaze)

                         Down there. That little one there.

               REVERSE ANGLE PAST Marty and Angie across the dance floor 
               toward the wall opposite, where three GIRLS are standing. 
               Two are leaning against the wall. The third is facing them 
               with her back to the dance floor. This last girl is the one 
               Angie has in mind. She is a cute little kid about twenty and 
               wears a bright smile.

               MARTY AND ANGIE.

               They stare off toward the three girls across the room.

                         Yeah, she looks all right from here.

                         Well, waddaya say, you wanna ask 
                         them? I'll take the one inna green 

                         I think this number is a little fast. 
                         Wait a minute.

               He tries a few tentative steps, testing for tempo.

                         It's all right, I think. They still 

               The two cavaliers turn their heads and look off-screen in 
               the direction of the three girls. Apparently, the girls are 
               still there. Marty and Angie relinquish their lounging 
               positions against the wall and slouch along past the line of 
               stags with a show of determined unconcern. They edge through 
               the crush of people on the non-dancing margin of the dance 
               floor and slowly push their way toward the...

               THREE GIRLS.

               Marty and Angie come in and start to approach the three girls. 
               The girls, aware of the boys' presence, stiffen and their 
               chatter comes to a halt. Angie advances to one of the girls.

                         Waddaya say, you wanna dance?

               The girl looks surprised, as if this were an extraordinary 
               invitation to receive in a dance hall, looks confounded at 
               her two friends, shrugs, detaches herself from the wall, 
               moves to the outer fringe of the pack of dancers, raises her 
               hand languidly to dancing position and awaits Angie with 
               ineffable boredom. Marty, smiling tentatively, addresses the 
               SHORT GIRL.

                         Excuse me, would you care for this 

               The Short Girl gives Marty a quick glance of appraisal, then 
               looks quickly at her remaining friend.

                                     SHORT GIRL
                              (but not unpleasantly)
                         I don't feel like dancing just yet.


               He turns and heads sluggishly in the direction of the stag 

               THE STAG LINE.

               A TRAVEL SHOT follows Marty, as he moves past the line of 
               stags, all of whom are watching him. CAMERA HOLDS as he finds 
               his old niche by the wall, leans there. A moment later, he 
               glances guardedly down to where the short girl and her friend 

               MARTY'S P.O.V.: The Short Girl is approached by a dapper 
               young BOY who asks her to dance. She smiles, excuses herself 
               to her friend and follows the boy out onto the dance floor.

               Marty stares at the Short Girl. He shrugs, he's used to this 
               kind of thing, then turns his attention bleakly back to 

               THE DANCE FLOOR.

               The band starts up again and the MUSIC blares. It's a Lindy 
               Hop number. Couples swirl past; the MUSIC comes up BIG.

               THE BALLROOM.

               Marty leans against the wall, smoking and watching the dancers 
               swirl past. Dr. Keegan's VOICE is heard.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         You here stag or with a girl?

               Marty's attention is on the passing couples, so he doesn't 
               seem to hear. ANGLE WIDENS to include the Doctor standing on 
               Marty's right. Suddenly aware of the Doctor, Marty turns his 

                         You say something?

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         Yeah. I was just asking you if you 
                         was here stag or with a girl.

                         I'm stag.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         Well, I'll tell you. I got stuck on 
                         a blind date with a dog, and I just 
                         met an old girl I used to know, and 
                         I was wondering how I'm gonna get 
                         rid of the girl I'm with. Somebody 
                         to take her home, you know what I 
                         mean? I'd be glad to pay you five 
                         bucks if you take her home for me.


                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         I'll take you over, and I'll introduce 
                         you as an old army buddy of mine, 
                         and then I'll cut out. Because I got 
                         this other girl waiting for me out 
                         by the hatcheck, and I'll pay you 
                         five bucks.

                              (stares at the man)
                         Are you kidding?

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                         No, I'm not kidding.

                         You can't just walk off onna girl 
                         like that.

               Dr. Keegan shrugs, moves down the line of stag guys. Marty 
               turns to watch him, still a little shocked at the proposition. 
               The Doctor approaches THREE STAGS and obviously broaches the 
               subject with one of them. This STAG seems more receptive to 
               the idea. Dr. Keegan takes out a wallet and gives the Stag a 
               five dollar bill. The Stag detaches himself from the wall 
               and, a little ill-at-ease, follows the Doctor.

               Marty stands against the wall, watching the Doctor and the 
               Stag, who come in and move past him. Concerned and curious, 
               Marty stares after them, then moves out of his leaning 
               position, following in their general direction.

               Marty moves through the crush of young men and women in the 
               area around the dance floor.

               ALCOVE NEAR ARCHWAY.

               As Marty reaches the alcove that separates the dance floor 
               proper from the lounge, he pauses and looks off toward the 


               Clara sits about halfway down the length of the booths. Dr. 
               Keegan and the Stag stand over her, talking to her. She is 
               looking up at them, her hands nervously gripping a Coca Cola 
               glass. Dr. Keegan is obviously introducing the Stag to Clara 
               and is going through some story about being called away on 
               an emergency. The Stag is presented as her escort-to-be, who 
               will see to it that she gets home safely.

               Clara is not taken in by any of this, although she is trying 
               hard not to seem affected. She politely rejects the Stag's 
               company and will go home by herself, thanks for asking anyway. 
               Dr. Keegan makes a few mild protestations, and then he and 
               the Stag leave the booth and start back toward the archway.


               From where Marty stands, he can watch Clara, as well as Dr. 
               Keegan and the Stag. The Doctor and the Stag start past Marty, 
               and he catches their conversation.

                                     DR. KEEGAN
                that case, as long as she's 
                         going home alone, give me the five 
                         bucks back...

                         Look, Mac, you paid me the five bucks. 
                         I was willing. It's my five bucks...

               They move past and away and Marty stares after them before 
               he turns his attention toward Clara off-screen.

               Clara is sitting as she was, gripping and ungripping the 
               glass of Coca Cola in front of her. Her eyes are closed. 
               Then, with a little nervous shake of her head she gets out 
               of the booth and stands momentarily at a loss for what next 
               to do. As she glances around, CAMERA ANGLES to include a 
               sign over an exit that reads "Fire Escape." Clara starts 
               moving toward that door.

               Marty is staring off-screen toward Clara. He slowly works 
               his way down the length of the lounge in the general direction 
               of the fire escape.


               Near the entrance to the fire escape, Clara comes into view. 
               Background sounds continue steadily.

               Marty is walking the length of the lounge and suddenly stops 
               and stares off-screen.

               Clara disappears through the exit onto the fire escape 

               Marty watches. Then he continues on, crossing the threshold 
               of the...

               FIRE ESCAPE.

               It is sizeable, almost a small balcony. It looks out onto 
               the backs of innumerable five-story apartment houses. Clara 
               is standing by the railing, her back toward the camera, her 
               head sunk down. She is crying. Marty watches her for a moment 
               before moving a step or two forward.

               Clara doesn't turn. Marty tries to think of something to 

                         Excuse me, Miss, would you care to 

               Clara slowly turns to Marty, her face streaked with tears, 
               her lips trembling. Then, in one of those moments of 
               simultaneous impulse, she lurches to Marty with a sob, and 
               Marty takes her to him.

               They stand in an awkward embrace, Marty a little embarrassed, 
               looking back through the fire escape doors to the lounge, 
               wondering if anybody is seeing them. He reaches back with 
               one hand, and contrives, with some effort, to push one of 
               the heavy iron doors shut. He returns his hand around the 
               girl's shoulders. He stands stiffly, allowing her to cry on 
               his chest, as we...

               FADE OUT.

               FADE IN:


               Mrs. Pilletti, in her hat and coat and carrying a purse, is 
               making her heavy way up the last few steps toward the landing. 
               She pauses to catch her breath on the landing. Then she moves 
               down the hallway to...

               ENTRANCE TO APARTMENT 4-B.

               Mrs. Pilletti rings the bell. The SOUND can be heard as she 
               waits. The door is opened by Virginia.

                         Hello, Aunt Theresa. Come in.

               Mrs. Pilletti enters the apartment.


               Virginia closes the door after Mrs. Pilletti enters, and 
               they stand in a small narrow hallway, brightly lit. At the 
               far end to the right is the living room in the background.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (in a low voice as 
                              she pulls off her 
                         Is Catherine here?

               Virginia helps her with her coat.

                              (nods, keeping her 
                              voice low)
                         We didn't tell her anything yet. We 
                         thought that we'd leave it to you. 
                         We thought you'd put it like how you 
                         were lonely, and why don't she come 
                         to live with you. Because that way 
                         it looks like she's doing you a favor, 
                         insteada we're throwing her out, and 
                         it won't be so cruel on her. Do you 
                         want Tommy and me to stay here with 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I think it be a better idea if you 
                         and Thomas go out, because otherwise 
                         she's gonna start a fight with you, 
                         and everybody's gonna be yelling.

               Thomas appears at the living room end of the foyer with an 
               anxious smile on his face.

                         Hello, Aunt Theresa.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hello, Thomas.

                         I just this minute got the baby to 

               He comes down to Mrs. Pilletti and Virginia, lowers his voice 
               to a conspiratorial whisper.

                         Aunt Theresa, we figure the best way 
                         to ask her is you say that you're 
                         very lonely, see? And wouldn't she 
                         come and keep you company, because 
                         that way, you see...

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Don't worry. I'm gonna take care-a 
                         the whole thing.

               A shrill, imperious woman's voice breaks into the whispered 
               conference in the hallway.

                                     CATHERINE'S VOICE
                         Who's there?! Who's there?!

               Mrs. Pilletti heads up the foyer to the living room, followed 
               by Virginia and Thomas.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (calling back)
                         It's me, Catherine! How you feel?

               CATHERINE comes in at the end of the foyer. She is a gaunt 
               woman with a face carved out of granite. She is tough, 
               embittered, with a history of pain and mirthless hard work 
               ingrained into her features.

                         Hey! What are you doing here?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I came to see you. How you feel?

               The two sisters quickly embrace and release each other.

                         I gotta pain in my left side, and my 
                         leg throbs like a drum.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I been getting a pain in my shoulder.

                         I gotta pains in my shoulder too. I 
                         have a pain in my hip, and my right 
                         arm aches so much I can't sleep. 
                         It's a curse to be old. How you feel?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I feel fine.

                         That's nice.

               Now that the standard greetings are over, Aunt Catherine 
               abruptly turns and goes back into the living room. Mrs. 
               Pilletti follows. Virginia and Thomas remain in the doorway.

               LIVING ROOM.

               Catherine and Mrs. Pilletti enter and Catherine heads straight 
               to a chair -- obviously her chair. It is an old heavy oaken 
               chair with thick armrests. The rest of the apartment is 
               furnished in what is known as "modern." A piece from House 
               Beautiful here, a piece from American Homes and Gardens there. 
               Aunt Catherine sits erect and forbidding in her chair. Mrs. 
               Pilletti seats herself with a sigh in a neighboring chair. 
               Thomas and Virginia remain off-screen in the hallway for a 
               moment to hang up Mrs. Pilletti's coat. The two old sisters 
               sit for a moment.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, how's everything with you?

               Aunt Catherine grimaces to describe how everything is with 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         My son Marty's fine. Everybody's 

               Thomas comes in from the hallway, stands in the back of the 
               room, somewhat apprehensively.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         We gotta postcard from my son Nickie 
                         and his bride. They're inna big hotel 
                         in Florida on their honeymoon. 
                         Everything is very nice.

                         That's nice. I gotta letter from my 
                         husband's cousin in Abruzzi. His 
                         mother died.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Do you remember Emilio DiGiorgio, 
                         owned the tavern in Abruzzi?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I don't think I remember him.

                         Well, he died. You know who else 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         You know the old man upstairs in 
                         this house. Old Irishman, always 
                         drunk. He got pleurisy. He was inna 
                         hospital two weeks. He died yesterday.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, I always like to visit you, 
                         Catherine, because you always got 
                         such cheerful news.

               Virginia comes into the living room with Thomas. They remain 
               in the background.

                         Ma, you want something to eat, some 
                         tuna fish?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hey, why don't you go to the movie? 
                         Your mother and me, we're gonna be 

               Thomas looks indecisively at his wife.

                         Listen, let's go downa Kaplans' 
                         apartment. They told us to come down.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Sure, sure.

               Thomas ponders a moment.

                         All right, Ma, we're going downstairs 
                         to the Kaplans, if you want us for 

               They exit. The two old sisters sit rigidly until they hear 
               the SOUND of the door closing. Catherine cocks an eyebrow 
               and promptly launches into her statement.

                         I wake up this morning, I hear the 
                         baby crying. So I wake up. I come in 
                         their room. That girl is shaking her 
                         hand atta baby. I said, "You brute! 
                         Don't you strike that baby! That's 
                         my son's baby!"

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         It's her baby too, you know.

                         That's my son Thomas's baby.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, it ain't your baby.

                         Did I tell you she threw the bottle-
                         a milk at me?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You told me.

                         She's a witch, that one. I tell you 
                         what happen yesterday?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         What happen?

                         She gave me the evil eye.

               She demonstrates this by pulling the lower lid of one eye 
               down and staring grotesquely at the ceiling.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         I keep one eye open when I sleep, 
                         because she's gonna come in, stab me 
                         in my bed.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Catherine, I want you come live in 
                         my house with Marty and me.

               Her sister turns, genuinely surprised at this request.


                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You son Thomas and Virginia, they 
                         come to my house this afternoon...


                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Your son Thomas and his wife 

                         When was this?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         This afternoon, about four, five 

                         What they say?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You know what they say. They say 
                         things are no good in this house. 
                         Catherine, your son is married. Leave 
                         him in peace. He wantsa be alone 
                         with his wife. They don't want no 
                         old lady sitting inna balcony. Now I 
                         tell you what I think. I want you 
                         come live with me in my house with 
                         Marty and me. In my house, you have 
                         your own room. You don't have to 
                         sleep onna couch inna living room 
                         like here. We will cook inna kitchen 
                         and talk like when we were girls. 
                         You are dear to me, and you are dear 
                         to Marty. We are pleased for you to 

               Catherine surveys her sister coldly.

                         My son Thomas came to see you this 
                         afternoon, and he said to you he 
                         wants to cast his mother from his 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Catherine, don't make an opera outta 
                         this. The three-a you anna baby live 
                         in three skinny rooms. You are an 
                         old goat, and she has an Italian 
                         temper. She is a good girl, but you 
                         drive her crazy. Catherine, you are 
                         no fool. You know this is no good, 
                         an old woman living with a husband 
                         and wife. Two women inna same kitchen, 
                         anna house burns down.

               Catherine stands abruptly. She is deeply hurt.

                         So I am an old garbage bag, put inna 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Oh, Catherine, please! Don't make a 
                         tragedy. You come to my house where 
                         you know you be happier yourself.

                         It pains that they should do this.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I know it pains.

               Catherine turns and meanders a few steps. The stiff edge of 
               mordant humor that has been her one defense against life has 
               deserted her, and she is just a hurt old lady now.

                         These are the worst years, I tell 

               She seats herself on an Eames chair. On her right, a Modern-
               Age lamp towers slimly. On her left is a Modern-Age endtable 
               with a Modern-Age ashtray on it. The hardened muscles in her 
               face suddenly slacken.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (with deep compassion)
                         Catherine, you are very dear to me. 
                         We have cried many times together. 
                         When my husband died, I would have 
                         gone insane if it were not for you. 
                         I ask you to come to my house, because 
                         I can make you happy. Please come to 
                         my house.

                         These are the worst years. I tell 
                         you. It's gonna happen to you. I'm 
                         afraida look inna mirror. I'm afraid 
                         I'm gonna see an old lady with white 
                         hair, like the old ladies inna park, 
                         little bundles inna black shawl, 
                         waiting for the coffin. I'm fifty-
                         six years old. What am I to do with 
                         myself? I have strength in my hands. 
                         I wanna cook. I wanna clean. I wanna 
                         make dinner for my children. Am I an 
                         old dog to lie in fronta the fire 
                         til my eyes close? These are the 
                         terrible years, Theresa! Terrible 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Catherine, my sister...

               Catherine stares distraught at Mrs. Pilletti.

                         It's gonna happen to you! It's gonna 
                         happen to you! What will you do if 
                         Marty gets married?! What will you 
                         cook? What happen to alla children 
                         playing in alla rooms? Where is the 
                         noise?! It is a curse to be a widow! 
                         A curse. What will you do if Marty 
                         gets married?! What will you do?

               She stares at Mrs. Pilletti, her deep eyes haggard and pained. 
               Mrs. Pilletti stares back for a moment, then her own eyes 
               close. Catherine has hit home. Catherine sinks back onto her 
               chair, sitting stiffly, her arms on the thick armrests. Mrs. 
               Pilletti sits hunched a little forward, her hands folded 
               nervously in her lap.

                              (continuing quietly)
                         I will put my clothes inna bag, and 
                         I will come to you tomorrow.

               The two sisters, somber and silent, continue to just stare 
               at one another.


               CAMERA PANS the crowd, picking up Marty and Clara dancing 
               cheek-to-cheek on the crowded, darkened dance floor. The 
               MUSIC rides over the top of the scene.

                         You come up here often?

                         I was up here twice before. Once 
                         with a friend of mine and once I 
                         came up alone. The last time... do 
                         you see that girl in the gray dress 
                         sitting over there?


                         Well, the last time I was up here, 
                         that's where I sat. I sat there for 
                         an hour and a half, without moving a 
                         muscle. Now and then, some fellow 
                         would sort of walk up to me and then 
                         change his mind. I'll never forget 
                         just sitting there for an hour and a 
                         half with my hands in my lap. Then I 
                         began to cry, and I had to get up 
                         and go home.

                         I cry a lot too. I'm a big cryer.

                         This is something recent with me, 
                         this bursting into tears at the least 

                         Oh, I cry all the time, any little 
                         thing. My brothers, my brother-in-
                         laws, they're always telling me what 
                         a goodhearted guy I am. Well, you 
                         don't get goodhearted by accident. 
                         You get kicked around long enough, 
                         you get to be a real professor of 
                         pain. I know exactly how you feel. 
                         And I also want you to know I'm having 
                         a very good time with you now and 
                         really enjoying myself. So you see, 
                         you're not such a dog as you think 
                         you are.

                         I'm having a very good time, too.

                         So there you are. So I guess I'm not 
                         such a dog as I think I am.

                         You're a very nice guy, and I don't 
                         know why some girl hasn't grabbed 
                         you off long ago.

                         I don't know either. I think I'm a 
                         very nice guy. I also think I'm a 
                         pretty smart guy in my own way.

               Clara smiles briefly at this.

                         Now I figure, two people get married, 
                         and they gonna live together forty, 
                         fifty years. So it's just gotta be 
                         more than whether they're good looking 
                         or not. You tell me you think you're 
                         not very good-looking. My father was 
                         a really ugly man, but my mother 
                         adored him. She told me that she 
                         used to get so miserable sometimes, 
                         like everybody, you know? And she 
                         says my father always tried to 
                         understand. I used to see them 
                         sometimes when I was a kid, sitting 
                         in the living room, talking and 
                         talking, and I used to adore my old 
                         man, because he was so kind. That's 
                         one of the most beautiful things I 
                         have in my life, the way my father 
                         and mother were. And my father was a 
                         real ugly man. So it doesn't matter 
                         if you look like a gorilla. So you 
                         see, dogs like us, we ain't such 
                         dogs as we think we are.

               They dance silently for a moment, cheeks pressed against 
               each other.

                         I'm twenty-nine years old. How old 
                         are you?

                         I'm thirty-four.

               BALLROOM, STAIRWAY.

               Marty and Clara are about halfway down the steps leading to 
               the street entrance to the ballroom. Clara has on a light 
               summer coat. Marty is about two steps ahead of her and has 
               to keep turning his head to talk to her. He is in an elevated 
               mood, intoxicated -- on a talking jag.

                teach chemistry? That's funny. 
                         Where? What school?

                         Benjamin Franklin High School.

                         Benjamin Franklin, where's that? 
                         Brooklyn? I went to Theodore Roosevelt 
                         right up here on Fordham Road. It's 
                         right arounna corner from my house. 
                         I have a cousin who's a teacher. He 
                         teaches Latin. He lives in Chicago. 
                         He was studying to be a Jesuit, but 
                         he gave it up after his first vows.

               He has reached the street landing and waits for Clara to 
               catch up with him. They stand in front of the glass doors 
               leading to the street.


                              (prattling on)
                         I was pretty good in high school. I 
                         sound like a jerk now, but I was 
                         pretty good. I graduated with an 
                         eighty-two average. That ain't bad. 
                         I was accepted at City College. I 
                         filled out the application and 
                         everything, but my old man died, so 
                         I hadda go to work. My best class 
                         was German. That was my first 
                         language. Der, die, das -- des, der, 
                         des. There you are, I still 

               He pushes the glass door open to...


               As Marty and Clara emerge onto the sidewalk of West Farms 
               Square, they pause again.

               It is about nine o'clock, and the busy street is brightly 
               lit from the stores.

               PASSERSBY hurry on their way. The elevated subway RUMBLES 
               over-head intermittently.

                              (chattering on)
                         You know what I was good at in high 
                         school? I was good in Math. You know 
                         how long ago I graduated high school? 
                         June, nineteen-thirty-seven. Holy 
                         cow! June, nineteen-thirty-seven! 
                         What is that? Fifteen, seventeen 
                         years ago! Holy cow! Seventeen years 
                         ago! Is that right? Seventeen, that's 
                         right. Where did it all go? I'm 
                         getting old. I'm gonna be thirty-
                         five November eighth. Thirty-five. 
                         Wow. Time goes on, boy.

               He takes her arm, and they start walking.

                         Nineteen-thirty-seven... that's right. 
                         My old man died December, nineteen-


               MOVING SHOT as they stroll toward the corner of Jerome and 
               Burnside Avenues.

                         Two o'clock in the morning he died. 
                         The doorbell rings, and I knew 
                         something was wrong right away. 
                         Because my room is onna ground floor 
                         inna front, you see, and I got outta 
                         bed, and I answered the door...

               CAMERA HOLDS as Marty, caught in his story, stops and 
               continues intently.

                         There was Mr. Stern. He had a house 
                         down about a block from us. He moved 
                         out though. My old man, he used to 
                         play cards with him and some other 
                         old guys. He's a Jewish feller. So 
                         he said, "Is your mother home?" So I 
                         knew right away there was something 
                         wrong. I was only eighteen, exactly 
                         eighteen years old, just the month 
                         before. So I said, "Is something 
                         wrong, Mr. Stern?" I was in my 
                         pajamas, you know? So he said, "Marty, 
                         your father died." My father died 
                         right inna middle of playing cards, 
                         right at the table. He had a heart 
                         attack. He had low blood pressure, 
                         my old man. He used to faint a lot.

               Suddenly he looks at Clara, rather startled.

                         Boy, am I talking, I never talked so 
                         much in my life. Usually, everybody 
                         comes to me and tells me all their 
                         troubles. Well, I'm gonna shut up 
                         now, and I'm gonna let you get a 
                         word in...

               He takes her arm again, and they continue strolling toward 
               the corner intersection in silence.

                         Seventeen years ago. What I been 
                         doing with myself all that time?... 
                         Well, I'm talking again. I must be 
                         driving you crazy. Mosta the time 
                         I'm with a girl, I can't find a word 
                         to say. Well, I'm gonna shut up now. 
                         Because I'm not like this usually. 
                         Usually, I... well, here I go again.

               They reach the corner intersection. CAMERA HOLDS on Marty as 
               he pauses again. He stares at Clara, confused at his strange 

                         I can't shut my mouth... I'm on a 
                         jag, for Pete's sake. You'd think I 
                         was loaded...

               Marty stares at Clara, absolutely aghast at his inability to 
               stop talking.

                         I can't stop talking! Isn't this 

               He stands there in the middle of the sidewalk with PEOPLE 
               moving past, back and forth. Marty continues to stare at 
               Clara, his broad face widened by a foolish, confused smile. 
               Clara regards him affectionately.

                              (with sudden sincerity)
                         You gotta real nice face, you know? 
                         It's really a nice face.

                         Thank you.

               They stroll along farther up the noisy, jangled, trafficked 
               Saturday night avenue.


               Once a candy store, now a soda fountain where booths have 
               been installed in the rear. One wall of the luncheonette in 
               front is covered with magazines from floor to ceiling. It is 
               a nice clean joint, brightly lit. Several CUSTOMERS are 
               occupying three of the four booths.


               They sit opposite each other in the booth. Each has a cup of 
               coffee. Marty is still talking, but now he is apparently 
               telling a story so funny that he can hardly get the words 
               out. The hilarity has communicated itself to Clara. Her eyes 
               are burning with suppressed laughter. Every now and then she 
               has to gasp to control the bubbly giggling inside of her.

                I'm inna kneeling position, 
                         and if you ever try shooting a BAR 
                         inna kneeling position, you know 
                         what I mean. I can't holda steady 
                         position. I'm wavering back and 

               He has to interrupt the narrative to control a seizure of 
               giggles. Clara wipes her eyes and catches her breath.

                the guy next to me, he's 
                         shooting from the prone position, 
                         and he's cross-eyed like I told you...

               He can't go on. He has to stop and cover his face with one 

                         So just then...
                              (stops to control 
                              himself again)
                just then I hear five shots go 
                         off from the guy next to me...

               It's too much for him. He lets out a sudden guffaw and 
               instantly smothers it under shaking shoulders. Clara hides 
               her face in her hands and giggles desperately. Some of the 
               other people turn to look at them.

                         So my target goes down, and a minute 
                         later, the flag comes up. I got five 
                         bulls-eyes. This cross-eyed guy next 
                         to me, he shot five bulls-eyes into 
                         my target...

               He stares at the girl, spent from laughter.

                I said to the sergeant who was 
                         checking my score, "Pretty good, eh, 
                         Sarge? Five bulls-eyes? So this 
                         sergeant, he don't know what happened, 
                         he says, "Say, that's all right, 

               He closes his eyes, shakes his head.

                         Oh, man. So that's what happened. 
                         That's how I got the reputation-a 
                         being the best shot inna whole 
                         battalion... oh, man...

               For a moment they seem to have controlled their laughter. 
               They sit, shaking their heads, studying their fingers on the 
               table in front of them. Then slowly, Marty begins to giggle 
               again. It communicates itself to Clara. In a moment they are 
               hiding their faces in their hands, their shoulders shivering 
               with laughter.

               STARDUST BALLROOM.

               CLOSE ON Angie. His eyes look slowly in every direction. 
               CAMERA PULLS BACK disclosing Angie standing on the fringe of 
               the dance floor, head arched high, looking at the crowded 
               dance floor. He starts back to the archway toward the lounge, 
               looking over his shoulder.


               Angie comes into the archway, throws one more glance over 
               his shoulder at the dance floor, then turns and enters the...


               Angie walks down the length of the lounge, looking into the 
               booths and simultaneously at the PEOPLE moving back and forth 
               in the lounge. At the far end of the lounge, he turns and 
               comes back along the bar side, checking each face at the 


               There are three young BUCKOES laying out their money for 
               admission. One of them calls to Angie.

                         Anything good in there, Mac?

                         A buncha dogs.

               He crosses to the Men's Room.

               MEN'S ROOM.

               Angie comes into a momentarily empty room. Angie goes the 
               full length of the white tiled room, past the wash bowls, 
               the long mirror, bending to look under the doors of the 
               stalls. Suddenly he calls out.

                         Hey, Marty! Hey, Marty, you in here?!

               He waits for an answer...


               CLOSE ON Marty and Clara still in the booth, but two more 
               cups of coffee have been set down in front of each of them. 
               There are also two pie-plates. Clara has left half of her 
               pie. Also an empty pack of cigarettes, and another pack half-
               gone. They are both smoking. Marty is still talking, but the 
               mood is no longer laughter. A pensive, speculative hush has 
               fallen over them. They have been talking for hours, and they 
               have reached the stage where you start tearing designs in 
               the paper napkins.

                         ...When I got outta the army, Clara, 
                         I was lost. I didn't know what I 
                         wanted to do. I was twenny-five years 
                         old, what was I gonna do, go back to 
                         my old job, forty cents an hour. I 
                         thought maybe I go to college under 
                         the G.I. Biller Rights, you know? 
                         But I wouldn't graduate till I was 
                         twenny-eight, twenny-nine years old, 
                         even if I made it in three years. 
                         And my brother Freddie wanted to get 
                         married, and I had three unmarried 
                         sisters -- in an Italian home, that's 
                         a terrible thing. And my kid brother 
                         Nickie, he's a one got married last 
                         week. So I just went to pieces. I 
                         used to walk inna streets till three, 
                         four o'clock inna mornings. My mother 
                         used to be so worried about me. My 
                         uncle Mario come over one time. He 
                         offered me a job driving his hack 
                         onna night shift. He got his own 
                         cab, you know. And God forgive me 
                         for what I'm gonna say now, but I 
                         used to thinka doing away with myself. 
                         I used to stand sometimes in the 
                         subway, and God forgive me what I'm 
                         going to say, I used to feel the 
                         tracks sucking me down under the 

                              (deeply sympathetic)
                         Yes, I know.

                         I'm a Catholic, you know, and even 
                         to think about suicide is a terrible 

                         Yes, I know.

                         So then Mr. Gazzara -- he was a 
                         frienda my father -- he offered me 
                         this job in his butcher shop, and 
                         everybody pleaded with me to take 
                         it. So that's what happened. I didn't 
                         wanna be a butcher.

                         There's nothing wrong with being a 

                         Well, I wouldn't call it an elegant 
                         profession. It's in a lower social 
                         scale. People look down on butchers.

                         I don't.

               Marty looks quickly up at her, then back down.

                         Well, the point is Mr. Gazzara wantsa 
                         sell his shop now, because he and 
                         his wife are lonely, and they wanna 
                         move out to California in Los Angeles 
                         and live near their married daughter. 
                         Because she's always writing them to 
                         come out there. So it's a nice little 
                         shop. I handle his books for him, so 
                         I know he has a thirty-five percent 
                         markup which is not unreasonable, 
                         and he takes home net maybe a hundred, 
                         hundred and fifty bucks a week. The 
                         point is, of course, you gotta worry 
                         about the supermarkets. There's two 
                         inna neighborhood now, and there's 
                         an A&P coming in, at least that's 
                         the rumor. Of course, mosta his trade 
                         is strictly Italian, but the younger 
                         Italian girls, they get married, and 
                         they don't stick to the old Italian 
                         dishes so much. I mean, you gotta 
                         take that into account too.

                         It's my feeling that you really want 
                         to buy this shop, Marty.

                         That's true. I do. But I'm gonna 
                         have to take outta loan inna bank 
                         eight thousand dollars. That's a big 
                         note to carry, because I have to 
                         give Mr. Gazzara a mortgage, and 
                         what I have to weigh is: will it pay 
                         off in the end more than I can make 
                         onna salary?

               Clara looks down at her fingers, her face alive and sensitive. 
               She carefully assembles her words in her mind. Then she looks 
               at the squat butcher across the table from her.

                         Marty, I know you for three hours, 
                         but I know you're a good butcher. 
                         You're an intelligent, sensitive, 
                         decent man. I have a feeling about 
                         you like sometimes a kid comes in to 
                         see me for one reason or another. 
                         And some of these kids, Marty, in my 
                         classes, they have so much warmth in 
                         them, so much capacity. And that's 
                         the feeling I get about you.

               Marty shuts his eyes, then opens them quickly, bows his head.

                         If you were one of my students, I 
                         would say, "Go ahead and buy the 
                         butcher shop. You're a good butcher."

               Clara pauses.

                              (not quite trusting 
                              the timbre of his 
                         Well, there's a lotta things I could 
                         do with this shop. I could organize 
                         my own supermarket. Get a buncha 
                         neighborhood merchants together. 
                         That's what a lotta them are doing.

               He looks up at her now.

                         Wadda you think?

                         I think anything you want to do, 
                         you'll do well.

               Tears begin to flood his eyes again. He quickly looks away. 
               He licks his lips.

                              (still looking down)
                         I'm Catholic. Are you Catholic?

               Clara looks down at her hands.

                              (also in a low voice)
                         Yes, I am.

               Marty looks up at her.

                         I only got about three bucks on me 
                         now, but I just live about eight 
                         blocks from here on the other side 
                         of Webster Avenue. Why don't we walk 
                         back to my house? I'll run in, pick 
                         up some dough, and let's step out 

                         I really should get home...

               She twists in her seat and looks toward the back of the 

                         It's only a quarter of twelve. The 
                         clock's right over there.

                         I really should get home, I told my 
                         father... Well, I suppose a little 
                         while longer. I wonder if there's 
                         any place around here I could put 
                         some makeup on...

               Marty considers this problem for a second, then leans out of 
               the booth and calls out.

                         Hey, Mac!

               CAMERA ANGLES to include the PROPRIETOR of the luncheonette. 
               He is sitting in one of the booths ahead reading the Sunday 
               Mirror. He looks up toward Marty.

                         You gotta Ladies' Room around here?

                         Inna back.

                              (to Clara)
                         Inna back.

               Clara smiles at this innocent gaucherie, then edges out of 
               the booth, taking her purse with her.

               187TH STREET. NIGHT.

               HIGH ANGLE SHOT of Angie meandering down the street on which 
               the neighborhood bar is located. It is near midnight, and 
               the street is empty except for Angie and the CLACKING of his 
               leather heels on the pavement. He comes to the bar, opens 
               the door, enters...

               THE BAR. NIGHT.

               The SOUNDS of Saturday night revelry are loud, coming mostly 
               from the Irish contingent of the neighborhood. They are 
               grouped along practically the whole bar. Three or four WOMEN 
               and a number of shirtsleeved MEN, mostly in their late 
               forties, early fifties. We know they're Irish, because one 
               of the younger men is chanting an auld country ballad.

               CAMERA ANGLES disclose the entrance to the bar in the 
               background, showing Angie coming in, looking here and there. 
               He starts toward the bar.

               NEAR BAR.

               TWO IRISH WOMEN, middle-aged, squat heavily on bar stools 
               over their schooners of beer, gassing away at each other.

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                she told me that the doctor 
                         told her that if she had any more 
                         babies, she would do so at the risk 
                         of her life...

               Angie shuffles in, pausing near the bar and standing behind 
               the two Irish women.

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         She was always a bit thin in the 

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         Well, at the time she told me this, 
                         she already had six. Every time I 
                         saw the woman, she was either...

                         Hey, Lou!

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         ...going to the hospital or coming 
                         from it. She was hatching them out 
                         like eggs.

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         And that husband of hers is a skinny 
                         bit of a fellow, isn't he?

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         Well, I bumped into her on the street, 
                         and she was as big as a barrel.

                         Hey, Lou!

               CAMERA ANGLES to include Lou, the Bartender.

                              (looking up from 
                              opening a batch of 
                              beer bottles)

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                I said to her, "Mary...

                              (calling to the 
                         Marty been in here the last coupla 
                         hours or so?

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         "...Mary, for heaven's sakes, didn't 
                         you tell me that another one'll kill 

                         I ain't seen Marty all night...

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         And her husband is a little bit of a 
                         man, isn't he?

                              (calling to the 
                              Bartender, but even 
                              more to himself)
                         Where is everybody? I been walking 
                         around, I can't find anybody...

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         Well, last week Tuesday, she gave 
                         birth to the baby in Saint Elizabeth's 
                         hospital... a big healthy boy of 
                         nine pounds...

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         Oh, that's nice. So the doctor was 
                         wrong, wasn't he?

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         Oh, no! She died right in the 

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         Oh, that's a sad story. And her 
                         husband is that little fellow, works 
                         in Peter Reeves.

                                     FIRST IRISH WOMAN
                         That's the one.

                                     SECOND IRISH WOMAN
                         Oh, that's a sad story.

               Angie has nothing better to do than give his attention to 
               the last lines of the story. Perturbed, he turns and leaves.


               With street NOISES over the scene, Marty and Clara walk along 
               through the intricate understructure of the elevated subway 
               toward Webster Avenue.


               Marty and Clara walk slowly along a side street in Marty's 
               neighborhood. The streets are almost empty; perhaps an 
               occasional PEDESTRIAN on the other side of the street. The 
               cars are parked bumper-to-bumper in lines along the curb. 
               The five-story apartment buildings are mostly dark, an 
               occasional window lit.

               Marty suddenly stops and bends down; his shoe lace has become 
               untied. Clara sits back against the fender of the nearest 
               car and continues talking.

                         ...It's really a fine opportunity 
                         for me. But I'm not sure I want to 
                         be a department head. It's mostly 
                         executive and administrative work. 
                         Well, anyway, I told you about my 
                         father, and he depends on me a great 
                         deal, and...

                              (still concentrating 
                              on his shoelace)
                         Why don't you just move out to 

                         Well, that's what I was saying. My 
                         father is getting old. And we're 
                         very close. He's a wonderful man, 

               She pauses as he straightens. He looks at her a moment.

                         I think you're kidding yourself, 
                         Clara. I used to think about moving 
                         out, you know? And that's what I 
                         used to say. "My mother needs me." 
                         But when you really get down to it, 
                         that ain't it at all. Actually, you 
                         need your father. You know what I 
                         mean? You're living at home, and you 
                         got your father and mother there, 
                         and you can go on like that -- being 
                         a little girl all your life.

                         I'm afraid of being lonely.

                         Oh, you won't be so lonely. You'll 
                         make friends right away.

                         Actually, I don't make friends easily.

                         What're you talking about? You're a 
                         real likeable person. You'll make 
                         friends out there in Portchester 
                         one, two, three. You'll have people 
                         visiting you alla time. I'll come 
                         visit you. I'll borrow my brother 
                         Freddie's car, or you can call me up 
                         when you feel blue, or I'll call you 
                         up. And it's gonna be nice. Don't be 
                         so afraid.

               They have only gone a few paces farther when Marty's shoelace 
               comes loose again. He fidgets self-consciously, bends down 
               and begins to retie it. The VOICE of Ralph, the well-dressed 
               man, established previously, is heard.

                                     RALPH'S VOICE
                         Hey, Marty!

               Marty and Clara both look off...

               STREET. CAR WINDOW.

               Ralph is leaning out the car window twisting to look back up 
               the street.

                         Hey, Marty!

               Marty and Clara look around to find the source of the voice.

                         Marty! Over here!

               Marty and Clara again look around trying to find Ralph. Marty 
               spots him leaning out of the window of a '47 Chevy parked in 
               the background.

                         Hello, Ralph.

                         Hey, Marty, come over here a minute.

               Marty and Clara start walking toward the Chevy.

               INSIDE THE CHEVY.

               Ralph and MABEL, a young woman in her early thirties, are 
               seated in front. In the rear seat of the car, LEO is 
               sandwiched in between a MISS LOUISE KELLY and a MISS ELAINE 

                              (explaining to girls)
                         You'll like this guy. This guy's a 
                         nice guy.

                         Who's this? Marty?


                              (confirming Ralph's 
                         Oh, this guy's a nice guy.


               Marty stops and excuses himself from Clara to walk slowly 
               toward the Chevy. It's about five cars down from him. The 
               camera pans with him.

               OUTSIDE THE CHEVY.

               Ralph is leaning out of the window again, watching Marty 

                              (approaching the car)
                         Hello, Ralph, what's new?
                              (looks through the 
                              back window, 
                              recognizes Leo)
                         Hiya, Leo.

                         Hiya, Marty.

                              (indicates with his 
                              head that he wishes 
                              to hold a whispered 
                              conference with Marty)
                         Hey, Marty, come here a minute.

               Marty leans with his elbow on the open front window of the 
               car, his head bowed, waiting for Ralph to speak his piece. 
               He studiously avoids looking at the girls in the car.

                              (lowering his voice)
                         Hey, Marty, we got an odd squirrel 
                         here, you interested?

               Marty allows his eyes to flicker quickly over the girl in 
               the seat next to Ralph.

                         Waddaya mean, Ralph?

                              (turning his head 
                              toward the rear of 
                              the car and raising 
                              his voice)
                         Hey, Louise, I want you to meet Marty 
                         Pilletti. Marty, that's Louise Kelly, 
                         inna back seat there.


               Louise, not an unattractive girl by any means, is a little 
               surly at the moment. She merely nods at the introduction.

                         What are we going to do, just sit 
                         around here all night?

                              (addressing Marty's 
                              bowed head in a quick 
                         Listen, Marty, these three squirrels 
                         are nurses. We're all going over 
                         Leo's house later because there's 
                         nobody there. These are the squirrels 
                         I told you about. Money inna bank, 
                         man. Wanna get inna car? She's a 
                         pretty nice-looking doll.

                         I'm with a girl, Ralph.

                         Get ridda her. This is money inna 

                         I can't do that, Ralph, because 
                         somebody already brushed her off 
                         once tonight.

                         This is a good deal here, Marty.

               Marty straightens, looks surreptitiously back to the corner 
               where Clara is standing.

               Clara stands alone on the corner. She is an angular, awkward, 
               plain girl. Marty brings his attention back around to Ralph 
               who is leaning out of the car window.

                              (bending down to Ralph)
                         I can't do it, Ralph. Thanks anyway.
                              (looks toward back 
                         Very nice to have met you all.

                         Come on, let's get outta here.

                         Hey, Ralph, we might as well get 

               Ralph bends forward and starts the car.

                         I'll see you, Leo.

                         I'll see you, Marty.

               Marty takes a step or two back from the car, and Ralph begins 
               the business of wheeling the car from out of its parking 
               place. The car backs and fills once or twice and eventually 
               clears and whisks into the street.

               Marty stands looking after the departing car, then slowly 
               turns and goes back up the sidewalk. He joins Clara and we...

                                                               DISSOLVE TO:


               Marty and Clara come into the dark house. Nobody is home. 
               Marty and Clara's silhouettes block the doorway momentarily.

                         Wait a minute. Lemme find the light.

               He finds the lights. The kitchen is suddenly brightly lit. 
               The two of them stand squinting to adjust to the sudden glare.

                         I guess my mother ain't home yet. I 
                         figure my cousin Thomas and Virginia 
                         musta gone to the movies, so they 
                         won't get back till one o'clock at 

               Clara advances into the kitchen, a little ill at ease, and 
               looks around. Marty closes the porch door.

                         This is the kitchen.

                         Yes, I know.

                         Come on inna dining room.

               He turns the light on as he enters. Clara follows him into 

               DINING ROOM.

                         Siddown, take off your coat. You 
                         want something to eat? We gotta whole 
                         half-chicken in the icebox.

                              (alighting tentatively 
                              on the edge of a 
                         No, thank you. I don't think I should 
                         stay very long.

                         Sure. Just take off your coat a 

               He helps her off with her coat. He remains behind her, looking 
               down at her. Conscious of his scrutiny, she sits 
               uncomfortably, breathing unevenly. Marty takes her coat into 
               the dark living room. Clara is patient but nervous. Marty 
               comes back, sits on another chair, and there is an awkward 

                         So I was telling you, my kid brother 
                         Nickie got married last Sunday. That 
                         was a very nice affair. And they had 
                         this statue of some woman, and they 
                         had whiskey spouting outta her mouth. 
                         I never saw anything so grand in my 
                              (the silence again 
                              falls between them.)
                         And watta meal. I'm a butcher, so I 
                         know a good hunka steak when I see 
                         one. That was choice filet, right 
                         off the toppa the chuck. A buck eighty 
                         a pound. Of course, if you wanna 
                         cheaper cut, get rib steak. That 
                         gotta lotta waste on it, but it comes 
                         to about a buck and a quarter a pound, 
                         if it's trimmed. Listen, Clara, make 
                         yourself comfortable. You're all 

                         Oh, I'm fine.

                         You want me to take you home, I'll 
                         take you home.

                         Maybe that would be a good idea.

               She stands. He stands. He's a little angry. He turns and 
               sullenly goes back to the living room for her coat. 
               Wordlessly, he begins to help her into the coat.

               Standing behind her, he puts his hands on her shoulders, 
               then suddenly seizes her, and begins kissing her on the neck. 
               As Marty holds Clara, kissing the back of her neck, the 
               dialogue drops to quick, hushed whispers.

                         No, Marty, please...

                         I like you. I like you. I been telling 
                         you all night, I like you...


                         I just wanna kiss, that's all.

               He attempts to turn her face toward him. She resists.






               He releases her and turns away violently.

                         All right! I'll take you home! All 

               He marches a few paces away, deeply disturbed. He turns back 
               to her.

                         All I wanted was a lousy kiss! What 
                         do you think, I was gonna try 
                         something serious with my mother 
                         coming home any minute!? What am I, 
                         a leper or something?!

               He turns and goes into the living room to hide the flush of 
               hot tears threatening to fill his eyes. Clara is also on the 
               verge of tears.

                              (more to herself than 
                              to him)
                         I just didn't feel like it, that's 

               Slowly, she moves to the archway leading to the living room. 
               CAMERA ANGLES to include the living room where Marty sits on 
               the couch with his hands in his lap, staring straight ahead. 
               The room is dark except for the slanted light coming from 
               the dining room.

               Clara goes to the couch and sits on the edge beside him. He 
               doesn't look at her.

               LIVING ROOM.

                         I'm old enough to know better. Comes 
                         New Year's Eve, everybody starts 
                         arranging parties, I'm the guy they 
                         gotta dig up a date for. Let me getta 
                         packa cigarettes, and I'll take you 

               He starts to rise but instead sinks back onto the couch, 
               looking straight ahead. Clara looks at him, her face 
               peculiarly soft and compassionate.

                         I'd like to see you again. Very much. 
                         The reason I didn't let you kiss me 
                         was because I just didn't know how 
                         to handle the situation. You're the 
                         kindest man I ever met. The reason I 
                         tell you this is because I want to 
                         see you again very much. I know that 
                         when you take me home, I'm going to 
                         just lie on my bed and think about 
                         you. I want very much to see you 

               Marty stares down at his hands.

                              (without looking over 
                              at her)
                         Waddaya doing tomorrow night?


                         I'll call you up tomorrow morning. 
                         Maybe, we'll go see a movie.

                         I'd like that very much.

                         The reason I can't be definite about 
                         it now is my Aunt Catherine is 
                         probably coming over tomorrow, and I 
                         may have to help out.

                         I'll wait for your call.

                         We better get started to your house, 
                         because the buses only run about one 
                         an hour now.

                         All right.

               She stands.

                         I'll just get a packa cigarettes.

               He rises and goes into his bedroom. CAMERA ANGLES to include 
               door to bedroom. Marty opens his bureau drawer and extracts 
               a pack of cigarettes. He comes back out and looks at Clara 
               for the first time. They start to walk to the dining room. 
               In the archway, Marty pauses and turns to her.

                         Waddaya doing New Year's Eve?


               They quietly slip into each other's arms and kiss. Slowly 
               their faces part, and Marty's head sinks down upon her 
               shoulder. He is crying, detectable from the slight shake of 
               his shoulders. The girl presses her cheek against the back 
               of his head. They stand. The SOUND of the kitchen door opening 
               splits them out of their embrace. A moment later Mrs. 
               Pilletti's voice is heard.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI'S VOICE
                         Hallo! Hallo! Marty?!

               She comes into the dining room, stops at the sight of Marty 
               and Clara.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hello, Marty, when you come home?

                         We just got here about fifteen minutes 
                         ago. Ma, I want you to meet Miss 
                         Clara Snyder. She's graduate of New 
                         York University. She teaches chemistry 
                         in Benjamin Franklin High School.

               This seems to impress Mrs. Pilletti.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Siddown, siddown. You want some 
                         chicken? We got some chicken in the 
                         ice box.

                         No, Mrs. Pilletti. We were just going 
                         home. Thank you very much anyway.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, siddown a minute. I just come 
                         inna house. I'll take off my coat. 
                         Siddown a minute.

               Mrs. Pilletti pulls her coat off.

                         How'd you come home, Ma? Thomas give 
                         you a ride?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Oh, it's a sad business.
                              (turning to Clara)
                         My sister, Catherine, she don't get 
                         along with her daughter-in-law, so 
                         she's gonna come live with us.

                         Oh, she's coming, eh, Ma?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Oh, sure.
                              (to Clara)
                         Siddown, siddown. Marty, tell her 

                         Might as well siddown a minute, Clara.

               Clara smiles and sits. Mrs. Pilletti likewise seats herself, 
               holding her coat in her lap.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (to Marty)
                         Did you offer the young lady some 

                         I offered her, Ma, she don't want 

                         No, thank you, really, Mrs. Pilletti.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (to Clara with a sigh)
                         It's a very sad business, I tell 
                         you. A woman, fifty-six years old, 
                         all her life, she had her own home. 
                         Now she's just an old lady, sleeping 
                         on her daughter-in-law's couch. It's 
                         a curse to be a mother, I tell you. 
                         Your children grow up and then what 
                         is left for you to do? What is a 
                         mother's life but her children? It 
                         is a very cruel thing when your son 
                         has no place for you in his home.

                         Couldn't she find some sort of hobby 
                         to fill out her time?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hobby! What can she do? She cooks 
                         and she cleans. You gotta have a 
                         house to clean. You gotta have 
                         children to cook for. These are the 
                         terrible years for a woman, the 
                         terrible years.

                         You mustn't feel too harshly against 
                         her daughter-in-law. She also wants 
                         to have a house to clean and a family 
                         to cook for.

               Mrs. Pilletti darts a quick, sharp look at Clara. Then she 
               looks back to her own hands, which are beginning to twist 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         You don't think my sister Catherine 
                         should live in her daughter-in-law's 

                         Well, I don't know the people, of 
                         course, but as a rule, I don't think 
                         a mother-in-law should live with a 
                         young couple.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Where do you think a mother-in-law 
                         should go?

                         I don't think a mother should depend 
                         so much upon her children for her 
                         rewards in life.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, maybe that's what they teach 
                         you in New York University. In real 
                         life, it don't work out that way. 
                         You wait till you are a mother.

                         It's silly of me to argue about it. 
                         I don't know the people involved.

                         Ma, I'm gonna take her home now. 
                         It's getting late, and the buses 
                         only run about one an hour.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         It was very nice meeting you, Mrs. 
                         Pilletti. I hope I'll see you again.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

               Marty and Clara move toward the kitchen.

                         All right, Ma. I'll be back in about 
                         an hour, an hour anna half.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Goodnight, Mrs. Pilletti.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

               Marty and Clara go out through the kitchen. CAMERA STAYS on 
               Mrs. Pilletti, who stands expressionlessly by her chair, 
               staring after them. She remains there rigid even after the 
               kitchen door has OPENED and SHUT.

               FORDHAM ROAD. NIGHT

               The biggest intersection in the Bronx is near the Grand 
               Concourse at Fordham Road, which is the biggest boulevard. 
               Despite the hour, the sidewalks are crowded with PEOPLE. The 
               TRAFFIC is heavy with buses.

               We PICK UP Angie walking up Fordham Road just about to the 
               Grand Concourse. As he reaches the northeast corner of the 
               intersection and stands, waiting for the light to change, he 
               looks off-screen. Something captures his attention, and he 
               calls out.



               In front of Alexander's Department Store, the street is 
               crowded, and a bus queue waits for the downtown Concourse 
               bus. Marty and Clara are part of the queue.

                              (starting toward Marty 
                              and Clara, shouting)

               Angie starts into the street without waiting for the lights 
               to change. Impatiently, he has to wait until traffic stops 
               for the light.

                              (shouting as he goes)
                         Hey, Marty! Hey!

               Marty and Clara still stand, seeming not to hear Angie.

                                     ANGIE'S VOICE
                         Hey, Marty! Marty!

               Marty and Clara turn and stare off-screen.

               Angie pushes his way through the CROWD on the sidewalk and 
               manages to join Marty and Clara.

                         Where you been, for Pete sakes?! I 
                         been looking all over for you.

                         I looked for you, Angie, before I 
                         cut out, but I couldn't find you.

                         I been looking all over for you!

               Angie is absolutely unaware of, or simply refuses to 
               acknowledge the presence of the girl. He has pushed himself 
               in between Marty and Clara, and addresses himself entirely 
               to Marty.

                         What happened, Angie, was that we 
                         thought we were just gonna go for a 
                         short walk, and then we thought we 
                         were gonna come right back, but we 
                         got to talking. Listen, Angie, I 
                         want you to meet Clara...
                              (he tries to turn the 
                              sullen Angie toward 
                         Clara, this is my best friend, Angie. 
                         I told you about him.

                         How do you do?

               Angie acknowledges the introduction with a surly nod.

                              (completely ignoring 
                              Clara now)
                         Waddaya gonna do now?

                         I'm gonna take Clara home. It's close 
                         to one.

                         You want me to ride down with you?

                         What for?

                         It's early.

                         It must be one o'clock.

                         It's Saturday night! There's still 
                         plenty-a action around!

                         Angie, by the time I get Clara home, 
                         it's gonna be one, one-thirty. By 
                         the time I get home, it's gonna be 
                         two o'clock. I gotta get up for ten 
                         o'clock mass tomorrow.

               Angie stares with thick, sullen jealousy at his best friend. 
               He turns sharply and starts away from Marty and Clara.

                              (as he goes)
                         All right, I'll see you!

                              (calling after him)
                         Where you going?

               Angie, feeling rejected and jealous, moves swiftly out into 
               the other PEDESTRIANS on Fordham Road.

                              (calling more loudly 
                              after him)
                         I'll see you tomorrow after mass!

               He stares for a moment at the departing form of his friend, 
               then turns to Clara with a shrug and a smile, as if to say, 
               "I don't know what's the matter with him." The long-awaited 
               downtown bus ROARS up to the corner, blocking our view of 
               Marty and Clara.


               Marty and Clara stroll along the walk toward the front doors 
               of an apartment house.


               Marty and Clara enter and cross the lobby toward the stairway. 
               They move slowly.

                         You got an elevator in this house?

                         We just live one flight up.

                         So I'll call you tomorrow.


               Clara leans against the iron banister of the stairway.

                         Call me about two-thirty, because I 
                         won't be home from my aunt's till 
                         about then.

               The doors of the ELEVATOR slide open, and a middle-aged COUPLE 
               comes out. They have obviously been having a heated exchange; 
               but at the sight of Marty and the girl at the stairway, they 
               become silent. They march across the lobby and out to the 
               street in repressed silence. The door CLANGS behind them.

               Marty and Clara have waited stiffly through this interruption, 
               and now they look at each other and smile.

                         Okay, so I'll see you tomorrow night 


               Marty turns and moves across the lobby toward the street 


               Marty stands a moment in the clear black night air, 
               expressionless, but within him, a strange exhilaration is 
               beginning to stir. He mosies away from the building along 
               the sidewalk, CAMERA panning with him.

               He strikes out suddenly with a spirited stride, as if he 
               knew where he was going.

               176TH STREET.

               CLOSER SHOT of Marty marching along 176th Street. He quickly 
               reaches the Grand Concourse. Here he pauses a moment, a little 
               at a loss for what direction to take -- then remembers he 
               needs the uptown bus.

               He moves across the wide street to get to the other side of 
               the boulevard. Again, he seems to lose track of which 
               direction is homeward.

               He walks uptown a ways with a strange jerky stride, pausing 
               every once in a while to see whether there's a bus coming.

               Suddenly Marty breaks into a dog-trot, then drops back into 
               the stiff stride as he approaches...


               The corner near the bus stop is deserted. Marty stops, leans 
               against the pole of the bus stop sign.

               Abruptly, he turns and walks uptown a little further.

               SERIES OF INTERCUTS: Marty strides, walks, stops short, goes 
               to the curb desultorily, a few paces into the street, moves 
               back. The traffic moves by him. He stands in the wide street, 
               then with a gesture of magnificent expansiveness, he raises 
               his arm and calls out.

                         Taxi! Taxi! Hey, taxi! Taxi! Taxi!

               CLOSE-UP of Marty standing in the street, crying...

                         Taxi!... Taxi!...

               FADE OUT.


               Marty is in his trousers and T-shirt. He whistles as he 
               assembles his toilet articles for a shave. He starts out 
               toward the living room, still whistling. Bright sunlight 
               pours through the curtains on his window.

               SECOND FLOOR.

               Marty's whistling accompanies him to the second floor where 
               he turns into the bathroom. CAMERA ANGLES to include Mrs. 
               Pilletti's bedroom, disclosing her wearing an old faded 
               batiste kimona, puttering around her room and cleaning. As 
               Marty's toneless tune reaches her, Mrs. Pilletti turns her 
               head and stares off, listening.


               Catherine, in the living room, is packing her meager but 
               neatly folded belongings into an old European carpet bag. 
               She has regained her stiff, mordant crustiness. The mild 
               WAIL of a baby can be heard.


               The crowded bedroom is furnished in white modern. It is 
               cluttered by a baby's bassinet and other baby items. Virginia 
               sits on the edge of the bed, holding the baby, quieting it. 
               She is half-dressed, wearing her pajama top, a half-slip, no 
               stockings; her hair is still uncombed. Thomas slouches against 
               a chest of drawers, in morning semi-deshabille. He is 
               obviously sick with guilt. Virginia looks anxiously at her 
               husband then to the baby in her arms.

                              (heavy whisper)
                         Don't you think I feel lousy about 
                         this too?

                         All right, Ginnie. I don't wanna 
                         talk anymore about it.
                              (sits on a wooden 
                              chair, unrolls a 
                              fresh pair of socks 
                              he's been holding)
                         I don't think I got one hour's sleep 
                         the whole night.
                              (raises one leg to 
                              put a sock on, pauses 
                              with his heel on the 
                              edge of his chair)
                         Last night was the first time in my 
                         life I ever heard my mother cry, you 
                         know that?


                         I don't wanna talk about it!

               He pulls his sock on angrily, then lets his leg fall back to 
               the floor and just sits, one sock on, one sock in his hand. 
               He looks sullenly in the direction of his wife.

                              (continuing, huffy)
                         I know what you're gonna say. A man's 
                         gotta stop being his mother's baby 
                         sooner or later. How many times you 
                         gonna say it? She's my mother, you 
                         know. I oughta have some feelings 
                         about her, don't you think?

                         Why do you always put me inna position 
                         of being the louse?

                              (in a furious whisper)
                         Virginia, I don't wanna hear no more 
                         about it!

               He stands, then becomes aware he has to put on his other 
               sock. He sits down again and pulls the second sock on. 
               Virginia has had a hot reply in her mouth, but she forces it 
               back. She rocks the baby a little.

                         Tommy, I love you, and I know you 
                         feel lousy right now, but we're never 
                         gonna be happy unless we have a chance 
                         to work out our own lives. We can't 
                         keep talking in whispers like this 
                         the resta our lives. We gotta have 
                         some privacy. We...

               Thomas has risen, a slim, dark, unsettled young man in 
               undershirt and trousers, holding his shoes in one hand. He 
               starts toward the...


               Thomas strides down the little foyer. He turns and looks 
               into the living room. He watches his mother packing strange 
               brown parcels into her bag.

                         Can't you wait five minutes? I'll 
                         drive you over inna car. I just gotta 
                         put my shirt on, that's all.

               The old lady nods brusquely.

               LIVING ROOM.

               Thomas stands with his head bowed to hide the tears he feels 
               sweeping into his hot eyes. Then he returns to his bedroom 
               in his stocking-feet, carrying his shoes.


               Thomas comes in just as Virginia bends over the bassinet, 
               having gotten the baby back to sleep. Thomas cries to her in 
               a furious whisper.

                         All right, get dressed, because we're 
                         gonna drive my mother over. Why 
                         couldn't you get along with her?! 
                         Why couldn't you make just a little 
                         effort?! She's a little hard to get 
                         along with! All right! All I asked 
                         you was try a little.

               He turns from her, sits down on the bed miserably angry with 
               the world, his wife, his mother, himself. The baby begins to 
               whimper again. Virginia turns wearily to her husband.


                              (roaring out)
                         I don't wanna hear anymore about it, 
                         you hear me?

               MARTY'S HOME, FRONT PORCH. DAY.

               A small procession consisting of Thomas carrying his mother's 
               carpet bag, his mother carrying small paper-wrapped bundles, 
               and Virginia holding the baby comes across the front hedge. 
               Thomas leads the parade with a muffled sorrow. They turn up 
               the porch to the front door. Virginia remains in the small 
               front yard. She is miserable.


               Mrs. Pilletti is dressed in hat and coat and all set to go 
               to mass. She is bent over the dining room table piling the 
               breakfast dishes and crumbing the table. She looks up as 
               Thomas comes in carrying his mother's bag. Aunt Catherine is 
               right behind him. Beyond the porch, we can see Virginia 
               walking the baby around outside.

                         Hello, Aunt Theresa.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hello, Thomas, how do you feel?

                              (setting the bag down)
                         Ah, my mother, she drives me crazy. 
                         I hadda beg her to let me drive her 
                         over here. The martyr. She always 
                         gotta be the big martyr.

                         Hey, will you go to mass, please. 
                         This one, he woke up this morning 
                         with salt in his nose. Do this! Do 
                         that! Will you leave me in peace, 

               A burst of spirited song soars from upstairs. Mrs. Pilletti, 
               Aunt Catherine and even Thomas pause to look up in the 
               direction of the voice.


               Marty descends the stairs whistling. He carries his jacket 
               over his arm. He makes some final adjustments to his tie.

               DINING ROOM.

               Alert to Marty's mood, Mrs. Pilletti, Aunt Catherine and 
               Thomas stand, waiting for him to join them downstairs.

                         Hello, Aunt Catherine! How are you? 
                         Hello, Thomas. You going to mass 
                         with us?

                         I was at mass two hours ago.

                         Well, make yourself at home. The 
                         refrigerator is loaded with food. Go 
                         upstairs, take any room you want. 
                         Thomas, you going to mass with us?

                         Yeah, yeah, sure.

               He abruptly goes out into the living room and onto the front 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                              (to Catherine)
                         You wanna cuppa coffee?

               Marty has followed Thomas out into the living room.

                         Boy, beautiful day, hey, Thomas?

                         Sure, great if you ain't married.

               Thomas goes out the door onto the porch. Marty stands in the 
               open doorway. He looks out into the warm sunshine in the 
               front yard.

                         Hi, Virginia.

               He goes out into the yard to Virginia. He is as gay as a 
               bird. He takes the baby from Virginia's arms, holds it high 
               up above him.

                              (to baby)
                         Hey, little boy, you sure getting 
                         fat. You weigh more than a side-a 
                         beef now.
                              (beams at the baby)
                         Hey, Thomas, so I was telling you 
                         yesterday you was over my house -- 
                         Mr. Gazzara, my boss, so he wantsa 
                         sell his shop, go out to California 
                         because his kids are all married, 
                         and he...

               Thomas hasn't been listening to Marty and crosses quickly to 

                         Wadda you so sore about?

                         Oh shaddup, will you do me a favor?

               Marty comes up to them, holding the baby.

                         So Thomas, he does about twelve, 
                         thirteen hundred gross. Rent's a 
                         hundred and two. The problem, of 
                         course, is the supermarkets. That's 
                         what I wanna ask you. If I get 
                         together with a coupla other 
                         merchants, make our own supermarket...

               Thomas has been trying to listen to Marty, but his thoughts 
               are all with his own problem. He whirls on Virginia.

                         What about the time she wanted to 
                         make an old-fashioned Italian dinner 
                         for my brother, but you wouldn't let 

                              (with her own temper)
                         Waddaya talking about?!!

                         Once a month you couldn't let her 
                         use the kitchen!

                         I told her she could use the kitchen 
                         any time she wanted...

                         ...You hadda be the boss inna kitchen 
                         alla time!

                         She don't wanna use my pots and pans!

                         So Tommy...

                         Waddaya want me to do, go out and 
                         buy a whole new setta pots and pans?!

               The baby in Marty's arms has started to cry a little.

                         Tommy, gimme a coupla minutes, because 
                         I promised Mr. Gazzara I'd let him 
                         know tomorrow. See, what I wanna 
                         know, Tom, if a buncha individual 
                         retail merchants get together, how 
                         does it operate? On individual mark-
                         ups? You know what I mean? Say I'm 
                         the butcher and Aldo Capelli, he's 
                         the dairyman and grocer, so suppose 
                         I mark up thirty-five percent, but 
                         he works on forty, so...

                         Waddaya talking about, do you know 
                         what you're talking about?

                         No, I don't know. That's why I'm 
                         asking you.

               The baby starts to cry again. Thomas turns to his wife.

                         Take the baby, will you?!

               Virginia hurries over and takes the crying baby from Marty's 
               arms, walks around comforting the child. Thomas turns back 
               to Marty.

                         Wadda you wanna buy a shop for, will 
                         you tell me? You gotta good job, you 
                         got no wife, you got no 
                         responsibilities. Boy, I wish I was 
                         you, boy. Waddaya wanna tie yourself 
                         down with a shop? What's he want? 
                         Five thousand down? You're gonna 
                         have to carry a mortgage sixty, 
                         seventy bucks a month. A mortgage 
                         anna note from the bank. For Pete's 
                         sake, you're a single man with no 
                         responsibilities. Stay that way, 
                         boy. Take my advice.

                         Well, you see, Thomas I figure the 
                         big problem is the supermarkets. But 
                         Patsy's shop, that's a specialized 
                         trade. The supermarkets don't carry 
                         Italian meat.

                         Who buys Italian meat anymore? You 
                         think my wife buys Italian meat?
                              (throws a baleful 
                              glance at his wife)
                         She goes to the A&P, picks up some 
                         lamb chops wrapped in cellophane, 
                         opens up a canna peas, and that's 
                         dinner, boy.

                         Sure, all you wanna eat is that greasy 
                         stuff your mother makes.

               Marty is a little taken aback by Thomas's frontal assault.

                         Well, I understand the problem about 
                         the supermarkets, but I was talking 
                         to this girl last night, and she 
                         made the point that a likeable 
                         personality is a valuable business 

                         Marty, see that my mother is nice 
                         and comfortable, eh?

                         Sure. This girl said...

                         What girl, what does she know?
                              (he whirls on his 
                              wife again)
                         Why don't you let her hold the baby 
                         once in a while?! Your mother, boy, 
                         she wantsa take the kid for a day, 
                         that's fine!

                              (her temper flaring 
                         Your mother handles the kid like he 
                         was a yoyo!

               Marty stands, watching the young couple yakking at each other. 
               The little baby starts to cry again.


               The two old sisters sit at the kitchen table, two untouched 
               cups of coffee in front of them.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Hey, I come home from your house 
                         last night, Marty was here with a 


                                     MRS. PILLETTI

                         Your son Marty?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Well, what Marty you think is gonna 
                         be here in this house with a girl?

                         Were the lights on?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Oh sure.
                              (frowns at her sister)
                         This girl is a college graduate.

                         They're the worst. College girls are 
                         one step from the streets. They smoke 
                         like men inna saloon. My son Joseph, 
                         his wife, you know, she types onna 
                         typewriter. One step from the streets, 
                         I tell you. Mrs. Pilletti ponders 
                         this philosophy for a moment.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         That's the first time Marty ever 
                         brought a girl to this house. She 
                         seems like a nice girl. I think he 
                         has a feeling for this girl. You 
                         heard him sing. He been singing like 
                         that all morning.

               Catherine nods bleakly.

                         Well, that's all. You will see. Today, 
                         tomorrow, inna week, he's gonna say 
                         to you, "Hey, Ma, it's no good being 
                         a single man. I'm tired-a running 
                         around." Then he's gonna say, "Hey, 
                         Ma, wadda we need this old house? 
                         Why don't we sell this old house, 
                         move into a nicer parta town? A nice 
                         little apartment?"

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I don't sell this house, I tell you 
                         that. This is my husband's house. I 
                         had six children in this house.

                         You will see. A coupla months, you 
                         gonna be an old lady, sleeping onna 
                         couch in her daughter-in-law's house.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Catherine, you are a blanket of gloom. 
                         Wherever you are, the rain follows. 
                         Someday, you gonna smile, and we 
                         gonna declare a holiday.

               Marty comes in from the living room, a little down after his 
               session with Thomas and Virginia.

                         Hello, Ma, waddaya say, it's getting 
                         a little late.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI

               Marty goes to the sink to get himself a glass of water. He 
               examines a piece of plaster that has fallen from the ceiling.

                         Boy, this place is really coming to 
                              (turning to his mother)
                         You know, Ma, I think we oughta sell 
                         this place. The whole joint's going 
                         to pieces. The plumbing is rusty. 
                         Everything. I'm gonna have to 
                         replaster the whole ceiling now. You 
                         know what we oughta do? We oughta 
                         get one of those new apartments 
                         they're building down on Southern 
                         Boulevard. A nicer parta town, you 
                         know?...You all set, Ma?

               Mrs. Pilletti exchanges a brief frightened glance with her 

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I'm all set.

               She sends another frightened look at her sister and follows 
               Marty out into the living room.

               MARTY'S PORCH.

               Marty, his mother, Thomas and Virginia with the baby file 
               down the porch to the street on their way to church. Marty 
               and his mother are both troubled. The anger has left both 
               Thomas and Virginia, but they are both silent. At the far 
               end of the alleyway, as they reach the street, Virginia puts 
               her free arm through her husband's elbow. Thomas looks briefly 
               at her and they exchange a look of commiseration. Everyone 
               turns and disappears off into the street.


               A HIGH, WIDE ANGLE SHOT of the church establishes that stage 
               of Sunday morning between the nine and ten o'clock masses. 
               People flock around the doors of the church.

               INSIDE THE CHURCH.

               The parishioners are making their ways to the door. A few 
               silent penitents still kneel here and there in the long empty 
               rows of pews. The large, almost empty church is filled now 
               with organ MUSIC.

               Both Marty and his mother seem a little depressed as they 
               stand at the doorway just inside the church, as the nine 
               o'clock mass people flow out, and the first of the ten o'clock 
               mass people file in.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         That was a nice girl last night, 
                              (Marty nods)
                         She wasn't a very good-looking girl, 
                         but she looks like a nice girl.
                              (she pauses, Marty 
                              makes no reply)
                         I said, she wasn't a very good-looking 
                         girl... not very pretty...

                              (still amiable)
                         I heard you, Ma.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She looks a little old for you. About 
                         thirty-five, forty years old?

                         She's twenty-nine, Ma.

               A nearby kneeling penitent looks disapprovingly at Mrs. 
               Pilletti and shushes her. The mother nods briefly.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She's more than twenty-nine years 
                         old, Marty. That's what she tells 

                         What, Ma?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She looks thirty-five, forty. She 
                         didn't look Italian to me.

               Marty frowns but remains silent.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I said, is she Italian girl?

                         I don't know. I don't think so.

               It's Mrs. Pilletti's turn to frown. A silence. She turns 
               back to Marty.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She don't look Italian to me. What 
                         kinda family she come from? There 
                         was something about her I didn't 
                         like. It seems funny, the first time 
                         you meet her, she comes to your empty 
                         house alone. These college girls, 
                         they all one step fromma streets.

               Marty turns, on the verge of anger with his mother.

                         What are you talking about? She's a 
                         nice girl.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         She didn't look Italian to me.

               A silence hangs between them.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I don't like her.

                         You don't like her. You only met her 
                         for two minutes.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         Don't bring her to the house no more.

                         What didn't you like about her?

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         I don't know! She don't look like 
                         Italian to me. Plenny a nice Italian 
                         girls around.

                         Well, let's not get inna fight about 
                         it, Ma.

               The kneeling woman shushes them again. By now the nine o'clock 
               worshipers have filed out, and Marty joins the flow of ten 
               o'clock people moving in. His mother turns back to him again.

                              (stopping her before 
                              she gets started)
                         What are you getting so worked up 
                         about? I just met the girl last night. 
                         I'm probably not gonna see her again.

               They continue down the aisle of the church.

               BAR. DAY.

               An hour later, the after-mass CROWD is there. It's a little 
               more crowded than weekdays. A WOMAN with a glass of beer in 
               one hand, rocks a baby carriage with the other.

               Marty enters the bar, moves along, ad-libbing "Hello" to 
               someone at the bar, gets the attention of Lou, the bartender.

                         Hello, Lou, Angie come in yet?

                         He was here last night till about 
                         two o'clock. I hear you really got 
                         stuck with a dog last night.

                              (glancing quickly at 
                         Who told you that?

                         Angie. He says she was a real scrawny-
                         looking thing.

                         She wasn't so bad.

               He turns away from the bar annoyed, notes Ralph, sitting 
               alone in one of the booths, reading the Sunday comics. Marty 
               ambles over to him.

                         Hello, Ralph. How'd you make out 
                         with those nurses last night, Ralph?

                              (looking up)
                         Oh man, you shoulda come with us 
                         last night, Marty. That one for you 
                         was a real lunatic. How'd you make 

               The abruptness of the question rather startles Marty. It is 
               not an expression he would normally associate with an evening 
               with Clara.

                         Oh, I hadda nice time...I didn't try 
                         nothing. She's a nice girl. I just 
                         met her last night, you know. I just 
                         talked with her. I didn't even try 

               He feels very ill at ease and a little guilty for defending 

                         Listen, you see Angie, tell him I 
                         went home, I'll meet him after lunch.

               He moves back down the bar and goes out into the street.

                                                               DISSOLVE TO:


               Marty is seated at the dining room table. He has removed his 
               jacket, tie and shirt, even his shoes, and is making himself 
               comfortable over a late Sunday lunch. With him are Angie and 
               Joe, the Critic. Lounging in a chair but not at the table is 

                the whole book winds up, Mike 
                         Hammer, he's inna room there with 
                         this doll. So he says, "You rat, you 
                         are the murderer." So she begins to 
                         con him, you know? She tells him how 
                         she loves him. And then Bam! He shoots 
                         her in the stomach. So she's laying 
                         there, gasping for breath, and she 
                         says, "How could you do that?" And 
                         he says, "It was easy."

                              (without looking up 
                              from his magazine)
                         Boy, that Mickey Spillane, boy he 
                         can write.

               Angie reaches over to Marty's plate and filches a piece of 
               rissole, evidently annoying Marty.

                         We gotta whole pot inna kitchen. We 
                         give you a plate-a your own.

                         Oh, I couldn't eat nothing. My mother 
                         just stuffed me right up to the jaws.

               This doesn't prevent him from filching a second piece of 

                         What I like about Mickey Spillane is 
                         he knows how to handle women. In one 
                         book, he picks up a tomato who gets 
                         hit with a car, and she throws a 
                         pass at him. And then he meets two 
                         beautiful twins, and they throw passes 
                         at him. And then he meets some 
                         beautiful society leader, and she 
                         throws a pass at him, and...

                         Boy, that Mickey Spillane, he sure 
                         can write.

                         Listen, somebody turn onna ballgame. 
                         It must be after one o'clock by now.

               Marty looks down at his watch, then stands and starts for 
               the phone, sitting on a chest of drawers at the other end of 
               the room.

                         Who you gonna call?

                         I was gonna call that girl from last 
                         night. Take her to a movie tonight.

                         Are you kidding?

                         Listen, Angie, I wanna tell you, you 
                         were very impolite last night. I 
                         introduced you to the girl, you just 
                         turned and walked off. Now, why did 
                         you do that?

                         You got me mad, that's why. Hey, 
                         Joe, show Marty that picture.

               Joe, having finished his dissertation on Mickey Spillane, is 
               now studying another girlie magazine. He proffers an opened 
               page to Marty, who stands over by the phone.

                         Put that away, for Pete's sake. My 
                         mother's right out onna porch.

                         I wonder where they find those girls 
                         that pose for them pictures.

                         Those are Hollywood starlets.

                         Put it away, Joe. My mother'll come 
                         walking in.

               Joe closes the magazine.

                         Marty, let's go downna Seventy-Second 
                         Street area tonight.

                         I don't feel like going, Angie. I 
                         thought I'd take this girl to a movie.

                         Boy, you really musta made out good 
                         last night.

                         We just talked.

                         Boy, she musta been some talker. She 
                         musta been about fifty years old.

                         I always figure a guy oughta marry a 
                         girl who's twenny years younger than 
                         he is so that when he's forty, his 
                         wife is a real nice-looking doll.

                         That means he'd have to marry the 
                         girl when she was one year old.

                         I never thoughta that.

                         I didn't think she was so bad-looking.

                         She musta kept you inna shadows all 

                         Marty, you don't wanna hang around 
                         with dogs. It gives you a bad 

                         Let's go downa Seventy-Second Street.

                         I told this dog I was gonna call her 
                         today about two-thirty.

                         Brush her. Listen, you wanna come 
                         with me tonight, or you wanna go 
                         with this dog?

                         Waddaya getting so sore about?

                         I looked all over for you last night, 
                         you know that?

               He turns away sulking. Marty doesn't pick up the phone but 
               returns to his seat, upset.

                         Another book that I read by Mickey 
                         Spillane, I can't remember the name 
                         of it, but it was about this red-
                         headed tramp he finds inna street, 
                         and he gives her some dough, because 
                         he's sorry for her... Wait a minute, 
                         I think that's the same book I was 
                         telling you about before...

                              (to Angie)
                         You didn't like her at all?

                         A nothing. A real nothing.

               Marty lowers his head. Over this, Joe's VOICE DRONES on.

                                     JOE'S VOICE
                         You know something...?

               CAMERA ANGLE HOLDS on Marty looking down, as Joe's VOICE 

                                     JOE'S VOICE
                         ...I can't tell one-a those Mickey 
                         Spillane books from the other, but 
                         he's a real good writer, though...

                                                          SLOW DISSOLVE TO:


               CLOSE ON television screen. Ed Sullivan is on, indicating 
               the time is a little after half past seven. CAMERA PULLS 
               BACK, disclosing Clara, Mr. and Mrs. Snyder in their living 
               room. Apparently the Sullivan show is very funny at the 
               moment, for the television audience roars with laughter. 
               CAMERA MOVES IN CLOSE ON Clara. Another ROAR of LAUGHTER 
               from the television that Clara watches, although her eyes 
               are flooded with tears, several of which have already traced 
               wet paths down her cheeks. Another ROAR of laughter.

                                                               DISSOLVE TO:


               Marty, Mrs. Pilletti and Catherine are eating silently at 
               the table. Catherine reads an Italian newspaper as she eats.

                                     MRS. PILLETTI
                         So what are you gonna do tonight, 

                         I don't know, Ma. I'm all knocked 
                         out. I think I'll just hang arounna 
                         house and watch...

               Suddenly he pauses, sharply aware of the repetition in his 
               life. Mrs. Pilletti is also aware of it.

                         Maybe, I'll go out and see what Angie 
                         and the boys are doing...

               They eat silently a moment.

               187TH STREET. BAR. NIGHT.

               CLOSE-UP of Marty leaning against the wall in front of the 
               bar. A group of young men lounge about, killing time.

               Angie, Leo and Joe are among them. There are perhaps four or 
               five other young MEN, loosely divided into two groups. The 
               group that concerns us has Marty and the others mentioned 
               and GEORGE, a young man in a sport jacket.

                         What time is it?

                         About eight o'clock.

                              (to George)
                         You don't feel like going downna 
                         Seventy-Second Street?

                         It'll take an hour anna hour back, 
                         and the whole evening's gone.

                         What's playing on Fordham Road? I 
                         think there's a good picture in the 
                         Loew's Paradise.

                         You guys feel like working up a game-
                         a cards?

                         Come on, let's go down Seventy-Second 
                         Street, walk around. We're sure to 
                         wind up with something.

               CLOSE-UP of Marty, his head down, his eyes closed. The group 
               continues their dialogue back and forth. Their VOICES can be 
               heard as Marty's head slowly comes up.

                                     JOE'S VOICE
                         I'll never forgive LaGuardia for 
                         cutting out burlesque outta New York 

                                     GEORGE'S VOICE
                         There's a burlesque in Union City. 
                         Let's go over to Union City...

                                     ANGIE'S VOICE
                         Yeah, you're the one who don't even 
                         wanna take a ride onna subway for 
                         half an hour. Now, you wanna go alla 
                         way over to Union City...

                                     GEORGE'S VOICE
                         I feel like playing cards. I saw 
                         Richie Rizzo, that's what he said he 
                         felt like doing...

                                     JOE'S VOICE
                         I don't feel like playing cards. 
                         Waddaya feel like doing tonight, 

                                     ANGIE'S VOICE
                         I don't know. Wadda you feel like 

                                     JOE'S VOICE
                         I don't know, Angie. Wadda you feel 
                         like doing?

               A fury rises in Marty's face. He cries out at them.

                         "What are you doing tonight?"... "I 
                         don't know, what are you doing?!"...

               CAMERA ANGLES over to the others who, at this outburst, stare 
               at Marty astounded.

                         The burlesque! Loew's Paradise! 
                         Miserable and lonely! Miserable and 
                         lonely and stupid! What am I, crazy 
                         or something?! I got something good 
                         here! What am I hanging around with 
                         you guys for?!

               He has said this in tones so loud that it attracts the 
               attention of the few PEOPLE on the street. A little 
               embarrassed by the attention he's getting, he turns, opens 
               the door to the bar, and goes into it.

               After a stunned moment, Angie hurries after him.

               INSIDE THE BAR.

               Marty marches the length of the room toward the phone booths 
               in the rear. CAMERA ANGLES to disclose Angie right behind 

               Marty is about to enter one of the phone booths, but he stops 
               as Angie hurries up to him.

                         Watsa matter with you?

               Marty pauses, one foot in the booth.

                         You don't like her. My mother don't 
                         like her. She's a dog, and I'm a 
                         fat, ugly little man. All I know is 
                         I hadda good time last night. I'm 
                         gonna have a good time tonight. If 
                         we have enough good times together, 
                         I'm gonna go down on my knees and 
                         beg that girl to marry me. If we 
                         make a party again this New Year's, 
                         I gotta date for the party. You don't 
                         like her, that's too bad.

               Marty has been fishing in his pocket for his address book. 
               He opens it to its proper page and steps decisively into the 
               phone booth.

               Nearby, Angie prowls around outside the booth. The booth 
               door is open. Marty starts to dial. A hush fills the room 
               except for the CLICKING of the telephone dial.

               INSIDE THE PHONE BOOTH.

               The look of fury has drained from Marty's face. He holds the 
               receiver to his ear, glances out toward Angie. CAMERA ANGLES 
               to include Angie.

                              (his old amiable self)
                         When you gonna get married, Angie? 
                         Aren't you ashamed of yourself? You're 
                         thirty-three years old. All your kid 
                         brothers are married. You oughta be 
                         ashamed of yourself.

               Still smiling at his very private joke, Marty returns to the 
               phone, and after a fraction of a second...

                         Hello... Clara?...

               As Angie looks miserable, and Marty slowly reaches out and 
               pushes the phone booth door shut, and continues to talk into 
               the phone, we very slowly...

               FADE OUT.

                                         THE END


Writers :   Paddy Chayefsky
Genres :   Drama  Romance

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