Deconstructing Harry Script - Dialogue Transcript

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Deconstructing Harry Script



l never could start

one those fires.



Dad, are you gonna have

chicken or meat?



Chicken's fine.



This is a brilliant article.




-You read Ken's article on China?

-No, l haven't.



Terrific article.



And where is Ken?



He's in the house

watching the Yankee game.



Your husband comes for a day

in the country.



And heads straight

forthe TV set.



Ken, come on honey!



How many chicken?

How many hamburgers?



Two more outs. Three minutes.



Everybody's dying for a libation.



Make some of your famous

Stoli martinis.



Janet, when are you going

to have a child?



You've let your sister have a

big head start.



Let Leslie practice viola   hours

a day. lt's not so easy.



Leave her alone.



l came in to make drinks

for everybody.



-What are you doing? Want a drink?




l was.



This is nuts!



We gotta get out of here.



What? No, we'll get caught.



l see them by the lake.



They're deep in conversation.



Wait! There's Janet!



No. lt's okay.



You can't scare me like that.



l grind my teeth. Just don't

scare me like that.



Just a false alarm.



Listen, try not to actually chew.



Wouldn't it be great

to be off alone.



Just relaxed. You and me.



lt'd be so great.



Let's hang in. You never know.



Come on, open wide.



Turn the Yankee game off and

come out here now!



l will. Just one minute.

lt's almost over.



l'm done.



-Come any time you want.

-Can l?



l'm done!



l'm ready!



Leslie, is that you?



Can you lead me

down to the lake?



Just a minute, Grandma.



l'm making some martinis.



-Sure, dear.

-l want to finish.



Ken? ls that you?



Finish what?






-Come, Ken.




Come, lead me to the lake.



Ever since l lost my second eye...



l feel so frail.



You don't have to moan.

lt's not that terrible.



Ken is hurrying, Grandma.



Would you do the olives?

Could you do them quickly?



You can use onions, too.



l prefer onions,

don't you, Ken?



Yes! Yes! Yes!



Boy, you must really

love onions!




-You schmuck! You bastard!



l'd like to cut your head off.



You're upset, right?



You knewwhat'd happen!



What are you talking about?



Don't answer me, prick!



You knew! You just didn't

give a shit!



Take your coat off.



How could you write that book?



Are you so selfish...



you don't give a shit

who you destroy?



-l can tell you're angry.

-You told ourwhole story!



You gave me away to my sister!



Marvin's left me. He's gone.



lt was loosely based on us.



Don't bullshit me, motherfucker!



Do you think you're talking...



to one ofthose retarded

talk show hosts?



l lived through it with you.

l know how loosely based it is.



What, are you telling me your

blind grandmother...



caught us fucking?






Of course, you made a few

stupid exaggerations.



or, as the critics say:

"inspired comic flights".



But Jane recognized it.

You'd have to be sub-mental not to.



And Marvin was crushed!



Jane has suspected us for so long.



l know! And l denied it!



And now, you've gone...



and confirmed it all for her!



Big fucking deal!

You made Leslie shorter!



Big fucking deal!



But it's all here!



The schmuck country doctor,

the violinist...



her sister in Connecticut

cheating with her husband.



The picture window, for Chrissake!



Cruel observations about Marvin...



and his barbecue and chef's hat.



And of course, Jane,

or as you so pathetically...



disguise her...






Here it is:



"lt was not just that Leslie

was numbed...



with the spate of leaden




that passed forwit from Marvin.



Norwas the image

she shared with Ken...



of Marvin's flaccid

microscopic member...



jiggling up and down

as he tiptoed naked...



across the icy floor

oftheir home...



to close the storm windows.



lt was that she

had never loved him...



but she wanted children to retaliate

against her sister...



who was not maternal, and whose

every inch, Leslie felt...



was occupied by gluttonous




Ken fondled Leslie's large breasts,

mounting her from the rear."



Big fucking deal!



-You gave her large breasts!







l'm Lucy, motherfucker!



Not Leslie!



Except of course,

l am Leslie...



because you didn't disguise it!

You didn't give a fuck!



You didn't care enough

to disguise it!






You pulled out two years ago.

You broke my fucking heart.



You left yourwife and me...



for some little cooze!



Me and Janet!



Jane. Janet is the character

in the book.






two years later...



your latest magnum opus...



emerges from this sewer of

an apartment...



where you take our suffering

and turn it into gold...



literary gold!



Everyone's misery,

you even cause misery...



and use your alchemy...



to turn it into gold, like

some fucking black magician!



l'm the one who

wound up in Bellevue.



You deserve it and worse.



You ruined my life!

l'll blow my brains out!



What's wrong with you?



ln front of you...



because you caused it.

My brains on your carpet!



You're unstable!



Will you relax?



That's why l turn you on.

Jane's crazy sister.



You're not going to kill yourself.



No. you're not,

because it's not in you.



You're neverwere

the dramatic type.



Jane is the dramatic sister.

Jane is the solo violinist.



Relax, for Christ's sake.



You're right.



l don't have the nerve

to kill myself.



l knew it as l came over here...



l said no.



Not me.



Betterto kill him.



Pardon me?



Kill the black magician.



So he can't spin any more

gold out of human misery.



What's wrong with you?



Shut up!



-Put it down.

-You're so fucking verbal.



You talked me into giving you..



a blowjob at

my father's funeral!



You stop right there!



Don't pull the trigger!



lf it makes you happy, my life's

been going badly.



l've been miserable. My girl

left me for a friend of mine.



lnsomnia. l've got herpes.



l squandered all l have

on shrinks...



and lawyers and whores.



Fatigue syndrome.



l won't stand up here on this

fucking roof...



with aworld-class meshugana

cunt and beg for my life...



lf you want, shoot me!

You interrupted me...



-Whose life were you exploiting today?

-You'll be happy.



lt was re-writing.



An autobiographical thing from

when l was first married.






to escapehisparent's apartment,




ofguilt, and




By day, helaboredin a shoe store.



Bynight, heglowedintenselyover

his Remingtonportable.



Are you coming to bed?



l'm in the middle of a sentence.



-l lost my thread.

-l feel rejected.



We never sleep together anymore.



l don't knowwhat it is.

l'm just not attracted to her.



-What does she do to put you off?

-lt's my fault, too.



l lie, telling her

l'm too wrapped up in work...



when l'm actually hyper-sexually

aroused. Just not for her.



Who for?



Anyone else.



Shehas a sister.

l'm dyingto fuckher.



A doll, thicklips.




ldream ofher.




historybutshe's spellbinding.



The truth is,

lneversee a woman..



thatldonīt wonder

whatshe's likeinbed.



l met a great hooker!



A hooker?



Beautiful. From China.



Unbelievable body.



Schooled by tradition

in the art of pleasing men.



Fifty clams.



lsn't that cheating on yourwife?



No. lt's not cheating.

She's a hooker.



lt's not like a love affair.



You don't feel for a professional

like you do for yourwife.



She comes over,

rubs on her oils...






lnto the sack.

She takes you to the moon.



Lay half a C-note on her

she's history.



Where would you do it?



l couldn't have her

at my apartment.



You get a hotel room. lt's what

l do when the wife's home.



l don't have the dough.

Fifty's a lot in itself.



Maybe a friend'll let you use

his place.



You're always bitching about

your sex life.



l'm trying to help.



l tell her you

gave me the number?



Not my name!

Don't use your real name.



Of course. Not the real name.



You borrow a friend's apartment,

you use his name.



That way it'll be on the bell.



Goodfortune smiledon Harvey.



One ofhisbest friends,

MendelBirnbaum, washitbya car,



andhoveredbetweenlife anddeath

atNew YorkHospital...



freeingup agreatbachelor




forHarvey's tryst.



Donningthe otherman's robe...




the swingerMendelBirnbaum...






his Orientalpassporttoparadise.



You must be Mendel Birnbaum.



Did you enjoy it?



-Are you kidding? Be right back.

-Where you going?



l'm going to check my pants

for another   .



l'd like to go again.






-Mendel Birnbaum?







Who is it?



Who are you?



l've come for you.



-What are you talking about?

-l'm Death...



and your name is on my list.






Wait a minute.

You've made a mistake.



You don't have a minute.



l'm not Mendel...



Don't give me that bullshit!



Look at your monogram.






Who are you talking to?



Don't call me Mendel.



-Please. l'm just using his pad.




They always have an excuse.



Let's go!



Move it, you little putz!



l'm on the roof.

She's pointing a gun at me...



we're out in the cold

and l'm panicked.



l tell her a story l wrote

when l was younger...



and she found it funny,

thank God.



She laughed and relaxed and

she puts the gun down.



So yourwriting saved your life.



lt's amazing to me, you know?



The interesting thing apart

from the obvious sexual guilt...



that l had when

l was young in the story...



is that nothing's changed.



lt's years later.



l had a shrink then and now...



l'm six shrinks later...



l'm three wives down the line.



And l still can't get

my love life in order.



l still love whores.



lt's ideal. You pay them, and

they come to the house...



and you don't have to discuss

Proust or films or...



l don't knowwhat's

happening to me.



l just have not grown up

and l feel...



l see other guys my age.



l think of fucking

every woman l meet.



l meet awoman in the bank...



or on the bus...



l think: What's she look like naked?

Can l fuck her?



This is crazy.



l see guys l knowthat

are lawyers and doctors...



with families and houses.



They're not so...



Does the U.S. President want

to fuck every woman he meets?



Bad example.



l don't know.



Take Raoul Wallenberg...



Did he want to bang every

waitress in Europe?



Probably not.



Tell me about

your honoring ceremony.



That's bullshit.



The same school that

threw me out years ago...



nowwants to honor me.



Why'd they throw you out?



Because l was not

interested in college.



l wanted to be awriter.

Writing was all l cared about.



l did not care about

the real world.



l cared only about

the world of fiction.



Plus l tried to give...



the dean's wife and enema.

They didn't like that.



The sad thing is...



l've gotta drive way

upstate to be honored...



and l have to go alone.

l got nobody to go with...



What about bringing

your son with you?



l can't. lt's not

my visiting time.



Joan is completely

inflexible, so...



She won't trade dates with you?



l can't even get her

on the phone.



She hates me and...



forthe first time in my life

l have writer's block.



Nowthis, to me, is unheard of.



l start these short stories

and l can't finish them.



l can't get into my novel...



because l took an advance.



l don't know.



l find l'm taking more pills

and medicine and...



You remind me ofthat story

you were working on...



twomonths ago...






Something's wrong with this lens.



This one, too? l changed lenses!



What do you mean?

Focus is off!



-l don't knowwhy it's a problem.

-The center's out of focus.



l checked all the lenses,

they can't be soft.



Let's move it. lt's late.



l'm tryin' to shoot Mel

and he's soft.






-Where do you rent these lenses?

-The lenses are fine!



-Mel's out of focus!

-That's what l said.



Not the lens.

l mean Mel himself.



Let me see!

Get the hell out.



You're right. Mel's out of focus.



What are you saying?



l said the actor's out of focus.



How can this be?



ls something wrong?



Mel, come here.



l don't know howto say this...



but you're soft.



l've gained some weight.



lt's not that. You're soft.



You're out of focus.



l don't knowwhy.

ls there anything we can do?



l can't adjust forthis.



Look at yourself.



You sure you're okay?



lt's fuzzy.



All right, look...



Mel's out of focus.



You're not in focus.



Nothing to do.



lt's   o'clock, anyway.

Why don't we just wrap?



We'll wrap and

we'll see what happens



Now look. l want you

to go home.



And l want you to rest.



And see if you can

sharpen up.



Grace, l'm home.



Hi, honey.



What's the matter?

You look strange.



l'm out of focus.






You are. Just a little bit.

You are.



And you look pale.



Daddy, you're all blurry!



Maybe you should lie down.



-l'll bring tea and toast?

-Daddy's out of focus!



Daddy doesn't need that, okay?



Come on now, you be nice.



What happened at work today?



First they thought

it was the camera...



Reuben! Stop it!



They thought it was the camera...

but it was me!




-They send me home.



-lt's humiliating.

-You eat anything strange? Shellfish?



No. This is not

an allergic reaction.



You knowwhat?



l just need to get a good

night's sleep.



-l'm sure that's all it is.

-What happened to you?



Getagoodnight's sleep.

Turn in early...



andtomorrowyou'llbe fine.



But the followingmorning

things didnotimprove.



ln fact, the situation was worse.



Melwasmore outoffocus

than ever.



l gotta get to the doctor.



Never seen anything like this.



Nothing's wrong with you,

except you're out of focus.



What's the matter?



lt's from looking at Mel.

l'm a little seasick.



That's why l want everyone

to try these.



-l don't wear glasses.

-Wait, let's see.



l don't want glasses.



-Put 'em on so you can see me.




-l look stupid with these on.

-Come on. Put 'em on.



-Daddy'll be much sharper.

-Want to see Daddy?



Put those on and

we won't get headaches.



Despite the fact children

don't want to wear glasses...



they're forced to.



You expect the world to adjust...



to the distortion

you've become.



l don't expect anything.



l'm going through something.



Forthe first time in my life

l can't seem to write.



lt's not coming.

And for me...



all l have in life

is my imagination.



Ourtime is up.



Have fun at the honoring ceremony.



lt'd be good if you took

your son with you.






-You never return calls.

-Leave me alone!



-How do l reach you?

-Shall l call the police?



l've got a question.



-Will you stop?

-No. l won't listen.



Tomorrowthey honor me at my old

school. l want to take Hilly.



-He has school tomorrow.

-Trade a visitation day.



No! l have plans with him.



lt'd be good for him

to see me honored.



l don't want him to.

l don't want him to see you ever!



He'll have a day in the country.

Will you stop?



A day in the country.

What is so bad?



He is   years old.



Where does he learn phrases like

"banging beaver" and " fuck God"?



What are you saying?

From me?



Do l look like an imbecile?



l know your conversations with him...



and l heard about "Open School Week".



Beth Kramerwas appalled.






Why doesn't my penis

look like yours?



Why doesn't your penis

look like mine?



Because your mother and l...



never had you circumcised.



When l was your age, you know

what kids used to do?



They used to name their penises.



l'm going to name mine Dillinger.



Dillinger is perfect!

Dillinger is great!



Hilly, you're inspired.

A genius.



Dillingerwas a genius

in his chosen profession...



like Willy Sutton.



Remember howwe

discussed Freud once?



Freud said the two most important

things in life...



are the work that you chose

and sex.



Those two things.






are God.



God's awoman?



No. l'm not saying that.



We don't know ifthere's

a God...



but there are women.



Not in some imaginary heaven,

but right here on earth.



And some ofthem...

some ofthem...



shop at Victoria's Secret...



Beth Kramer has never been

so mortified in her entire life.



Beth Kramer's atight-assed,

busybody cunt...



and it's none of her business

how l speak to my son.



She is a decent parent

and great friend.




Just change one visitation day.



What is so terrible?



No! He is not going to miss school!



lf Hilly was sick

he would miss school!



Yes, he would.

But he's not sick...



and he's not spending the day

with his pill-popping...







excuse for a father.



Years ago you didn't say that

about me.



-You were an easy-going spirit...

-Put it in a book.



What am l saying?



You already did.




his thirdshrink.




feelings forheroften.



She seemedtoputitdown

to transference



Butone dayshe surprisedhim."



l think it best...



that we terminate your




And then, l think we should...



give it a substantial

period oftime.



Then, ifwe both feel

the same way...



l think we can begin

to see each other again...






"lt was, to Epstein thinking...



amatchmade in Heaven.



Here, atlast, was a woman who




You know all my secrets,



every nuance of my psychic life.



l've admitted every feeling

and desire in therapy.



Now it's yourturn

to explore me.



Yeah, but you accept

all my perversions.



Being tied up, watching you

with otherwomen.



Feeling your spike heels

in my mouth.



Non one can say l didn't know...



what l was letting myself in for.



The firsttwoyears

were amazing.



Theymovedto a West

Side apartment.



He wrote.

She sawpatients.




were intohis work.



What one comes away with

is yourtotal isolation.



Your fear of people,

your panic over closeness.



And that's why your real life

is so chaotic...



and yourwriting

is so much more...



controlled and stable.

You're unable to..



ltall wentquite well...







From then on, asifshe'd

hada divinerevelation...



Shebecame whatEpstein

referredto angrily...



as "Jewish with a vengeance."



l rue the day

l listened to you...



and l didn't have him




Are you nuts?



We can still do it.






He's too old.



-Sure. Now he's too old.

-What is wrong with you?



You're like a born-again Christian

except you're aJew.



l see my father's face in Hillel.



Hilliard. His name is Hilliard.



We didn't name him Hillel.

Not after some rabbi.



Hilliard Epstein.



l'm sick of smug cynicism.

There's value in tradition.



l thought it meant nothing,

but nowthat l'm a mother, it does.



l see not only meaning

in Judaism, but true beauty.



You're a scientist!



Einstein was a scientist!



And he was aJew!

And he was religious!



"Helenhadtaken on

the obligation ofdailyprayers.



Jews, ofcourse, fearing

a wrathfuland vengefulgod...



givepraise andthanks




Baruch atah adonai elohenu melech




borei pree hagofen.



Hamotzi lechem...



min ha-oretz.



Vitzi-vonu l'hadlik nair

shel shabat.



Boreh pree ha...blowjob.



Andone daytheinevitable




A patientofHelen's,




whohadcome toher, depressed

thathis wifehadlefthim...






l think it best...



that we terminate your




give it a substantial time.



Then, ifwe feel the same way...



start to see each other...






Lost in thought, l think.



l was just, l was thinking

about a book l wrote.



-Well, l'm a mess.

-What's the matter?



l'm going to the doctor.

l have pains in my chest.



lt's nothing.



lt's indigestion or gallbladder

or acid reflux...



l've got a family history.

My dad died of heart attack...



my mother died

of a massive coronary.



Both brothers died before they

were    from heart failure.



Why waste time talking?

Get an ambulance.



Are you busy?



l was going to see my editor.



l just hate going alone.



My mother died

giving birth to me.



Forwhich my father

never forgave me.



lt's funny. l wish before he died,

l had forgiven him.



But we're morbid. You think

you're dying but you're not.



Today they got lasers,

all kinds of...



Yeah, you and science, right?



Nothing wrong with science.



Between air-conditioning and the

Pope, l'll take air-conditioning.



l'm scared.

l'm really scared.



Can l change the subject?

You know l have writer's block?



l know.



l have awriter's block.



First time in my life...



l can't come up with an idea,

something to hold my interest.



Since Fay left you you've been

having trouble.



l'm seeing Fay later

for a drink.



l think is very good.



She's good for you.

She's a lot betterthan...



a lot ofthose other

crazies that...



My God! My arm!



l'm telling you it's nothing.




l'm not scared.



-You're in great shape.




You just have a little

bursitis in your arm.



That's fantastic!

My God, thank you!



The loveliest words

to hear are not, "l love you"...



but "lt's benign."



We could do more tests,

but l don't think so.



Your heart's in great shape.



l hurt my back some weeks a go

opening a sub-zero refrigerator.



-Let me buy a cup of coffee.

-Let me schedule you.



-No. l don't have time.

-Let me schedule you.



What are you doing tomorrow?



l'm busy. Why?



l'm going to my old school.

The honoring me.



l'd like someone

to come with me.



l can't get out ofthis thing...



but that's great.






-You look great.

-Thank you.



You look a little tired.



l'm struggling with this book.



Naturally, l spent the advance...



and l'm having atough...



atough time.



l wanted to have

this drink because...



Can l get a red wine?



Same thing she has, please?



l wanted to be the first

to tell you that...



l'm getting married.



Don't say that!




-What do you mean?






l love you.

How can you get married?






-Who? ls it Larry?

-Yes, it's Larry!



l knew it!



l don't fucking believe this!



This guy's allegedly

a friend of mine.



lt's the Devil.

And l introduced you.



When Larry's around.

l smell burning sulfur.



Can we have your blessing?



No! You certainly

don't have my blessing!



l don't want you

to get married.



l don't want you to.



l should go.



l was your pupil.



lt was Henry Higgins

and Eliza Doolittle.



That's what it was,

and that's what you loved.



But it didn't work that way.

What can l say?



Why did you

fall in love with me?



You gave me endless lectures

on love in the Western world.



l didn't think l could.

l thought l was too damaged.



l woke up one morning, and

l looked at you over breakfast...



and l thought to myself...



God, this is what they mean.



This is what they were

talking about.



All those warnings not to

fall in love with you!



But then l fell in love with you.



Thought you were

anotherjerk fan...



l'd fuck you...



and move on to the next fan.

But that didn't happen.



You were a fan...



and a follower...



and then a pupil...



and then you were a roommate.



And before l knew it...



you had control

ofthe channel changer.



l loved you.



l was in awe of you.



But it wasn't in love with you.



My old university is honoring me,

if you can believe that.



Come with me, let me try

to talk you out of it...



Just one day.



l'm getting married tomorrow.



-Tomorrow? The day l'm honored?

-Yes! Tomorrow!



l can't fucking believe this.



You're getting married tomorrow?



Yes. lt's been planned for months!



Don't do it!



"While Goldberg was asleep




the devilenteredhis apartment...




blonde love...









Goldbergnoticedthe oddsmellof




Harry Block?



You're Cookie?



Cookie Williams.



You wanted me here at ten?



You wanna, shall we get to it?



You don't want to talk

a little first?



Talk? Why?



Really? Most guys don't

like to jump into bed...



without talking. They think it's

too businesslike.



Not me. l'm not...



that you'd tie me up.



Whatever you want! Let's settle

the monetary part and then relax.






-You get $   ?

-That's right.



So you want me to tie you up?



Yeah, tie me up.



l'd like you to hit me...



and give me a blowjob.



A blowjob, then you hit you.






Hit me and then the blowjob.



lfthe order's not right,

it's no fun.



Tie me up, hit me,

give me a blowjob.



What should l tie you with?



The truth is l thought you

were going to wear stockings.




you're a definite artist.



They should put your lips

in the Smithsonian.



lt took you awhile.

l didn't think you'd make it.



l was having a little

problem focusing.



Finally, l got the right fantasy.



l thought of awoman l saw

in the Sixth Avenue...



and l coupled herwith

Svetlana Stalin.



lt's the daughter ofthe dictator.

lt worked.



What do you take medicine for?



Me? Depression.



What are you depressed about?



Depressed. Don't you ever get




Doesn't yourwork get you down?



lt's okay. Beats the hell out of




lt's funny.



Every hooker l meet says it

beats the hell out ofwaitressing.



Waitressing's got to be

the worst job in the world.



lt's unbelievable.



What are you sad about?



l'm spiritually bankrupt.

l'm empty.



What do you mean?



l'm frightened.



l got no soul.

Knowwhat l mean?



See, when l was younger,

it was less scary...



waiting for Lefty than it is

waiting for Godot.



You lost me.



You knowthat the universe is

coming apart?



You knowwhat a black hole is?




That's how l make my living.



l gottatell you, a great writer

named Sophocles...



said it was probably best

not to be born al all.



Honey, it's a little

too late forthat.



l didn't want to come out.

They had to come in and get me.



You want another blowjob?



How come?



On the house. No charge.



Because them pills you takin'

sure ain't working.



l'm just in a peculiar mood




Because l had

some bad news today.



Let me ask you,

what are you doing tomorrow.







Why don't you come with me?






l'm going to my old school.

They're honoring me.



l got nobody to share it with.



l'm serious. Come with me.



l'll give you     bucks.



Sleep here,

come up with me tomorrow.



Why you got all this money?



l always have

hooker money because...



l once paid by check years ago

and the lRS killed me.



Fay, when you get this message,

if it's not too late...



don't get married...



because l love you...



and l want to marry you.



l was looking at...



my last book...



at the part where we met.



l tried to exaggerate it

to make it funny...



but it was actually

very romantic.



-She can't hear.

-l'm in town.



Norman's meeting me for "Les Mis."

l have a free hour.



l don't know if l can.



l got our usual place at the

Wyndham. lt's been   weeks ago.



We gotta be fast. l can't make it

believable for so long.



You'll be back in an hour.



l have to be done by then anyway.



Think l'll take awalk.






Yes, l thought that l would just...



just get some fresh air.






Excuse me.



Are you Harry Block?






-Yourwriting's so meaningful to me.

-Thank you.



l can't believe l'm in

the elevatorwith you.



lt's no big deal.



Are you staying here?



No. l'm meeting someone.



What is this?



lt's stuck again.



lfthis was one of my stories,

this elevatorwould get stuck...



and you and l would start a major

affair, and fall in love.



Promise you won't

fall in love with me.






Definitely not.

Not a good idea.









l'm too screwed up.



l have...



too many quirks.



l have trouble being faithful.



l have too many phobias.

l'm crazy.



Yeah, but l fell in love with you

before l met you.



When l read you.



Yes, but you fell in love

with my work.



That's a different thing.



l love yourwork.

l love your imagination.



l love it.



But this is not a book.

You knowwhat l mean.



We're not characters

in a fictional thing.



-So don't fall in love with me.

-Kiss me.



-Promise you won't.

-No, kiss me.



l promise.



Thank you.



The subway took forever. Sorry.



You said you weren't coming.



What do you mean?



-We said   . l'm sure.




l called last night,

to say l got out of my thing.



You called? When?



At  .   last night.

You don't remember?



l interrupted you writing.



-We spoke on the phone.




My mind has been playing tricks.



This is Cookie Williams,




How ya doing?



What's so special

about this honor?



He's being honored by

the school that expelled him.



lf only Hilly could see me,

he'd be so proud.



lt's sad, but short of kidnapping,

he ain't coming.



Oh, dear!






-Hilly, Where you going?

-What are you doing?



Stop it!



lt's an emergency.



What are you doing?

Come on!



You can't do this!



Hilly, get out ofthe car!



Somebody stop this man!

He's a deviant!



Somebody stop him!



Somebody call the police!



-lt's fabulous up here.




Look, a ferris wheel!



-Look at the swings!

-Want to go?






Very good!



Would you like this?



Dad, high-five!



You want some ofthis joint?



No. l can't stand that stuff.



You see that place there?



That Red Apple Rest?



Years ago...



my then wife, Jane,

and l...



were coming back from

her sister's house...



and we had a fight.



She had her period, and we

stopped to get water for Midol.



l don't want a child!



And don't bring it up

in front of my parents!



-l don't understand.

-We've discussed it!



-Don't l get a vote?

-You have a child!



-Who l never get to see!

-That's not my fault!



l like being a father.



l'm not Lucy. You knew

that when you married me!



So yourwork means no children.



Since when are you a family man?



Don't think l don't see

you staring at my sister Lucy.






Don't play ignorant.



You watch herwalk and sit.



You can't keep

your eyes off hertoes!



Are you fucking nuts?

What are you suggesting?



l wouldn't put it past you if you

wanted to have athing with her.



She's a neurotic, suburban Hausfrau!



l have no interest in her.

Zero. Nothing.



You're level of denial

is a little intense.



You're suffering from

a pre-menstrual nuclear meltdown.



You want a hit?



No. That smoke is killing me.



l'm going to go to the bathroom.

Catch you later.



Cold fish, yourthird ex-wife.



She neverwould have made

a good mother.



Who are you?



lt's me. Ken!



Look at this guy! You created me,

now you don't recognize me?



l'm a little bit high because

of her smoke...



How'd you ever

hook up with Jane?



Jane was fine. Jane was just

having her period. She was...



lt wasn't just her period.



She was a cold, selfish woman.



She's so self-involved she doesn't

realize her sister hates her.



How do you know so much?



l'm just you, thinly disguised.



You gave me a little more

maturity and a different name.



Are you saying that l knowthis?




That's why you picked her!



So it wouldn't work, and you'd

never have to give up...



sport-fucking and chronic

dissatisfaction and grow up.



l won't stand here and get

lectured by my own creation.



You can't fool me.



l'm not your shrink.

He only knows what you tell him.



l knowthe truth.



And her sister, Lucy.



Another head-case.



You sure can pick them.



But even she was better

than Jane.



More maternal and she loved you.



You weren't there the day your

bomb dropped on her...



but take a look.



He left me!



Our marriage is finished!



l'm sorry to hearthat.



You shocked?



Yes and no.



Things have not been very good

for some time.



l knew he played around.



Did you?

You never mentioned that.



l don't like to discuss

my private life.



First suspected Lynn, his editor.

Then l thought...



it might be Allison Davis,

a friend of ours.



l even thought he might have

a crush on you.






You're beautiful and we've spent

a lot oftime together...



and you two get along very well.



Obviously l knew you neverwould

in a million years...



but l imagined he longed for you.



l even heard him mention

your name in his sleep once.



My goodness.



That's absurd!






You're all red!






Are you okay?



Since we're talking openly...



l have a confession to make.






Life sometimes takes very

strange twists and turns.



lt overwhelms us, and we can't

help our feelings.



Our feelings are irrational.



But to hear from your husband

that he found anotherwoman!



He said that?



He said his future

is all mapped out.



l'm going to be totally

frank with you.



-Try to hang on and understand.

-What? l'm being replaced.



But it doesn't have to be

a nightmare...



ifwe're all just mature about it.



Replaced by a   -year-old.



-Excuse me?

-A   -year-old.



A wanna-be writer. Fay Sexton is her

sexy name.



What's the matter?

Now you're white!



Lucy have you

eaten anything today?



Have a drink.

Finish that.



-How could l believe such a liar.

-l'm weak!



What's wrong?



You'd think he dumped you.



-You feel bad, but can handle it.




l'm in shock today, but...



l want to speak to Fay.



lt's Harry Block. l've been trying

to reach her.



No, it's an emergency.

l gottatalk...



Tell herto call me back.

lt's the car number.



Yes. The car!



-She's in love with someone else.

-This guy is too old for her.



Youngerthan you.



l'm much too old for her.

lt's ridiculous.



-But my immaturity makes me boyish.

-ls it much longer, Dad?



-We just got done at the fair.

-You're speeding.



-About how much longer is it?

-lt won't be long.



Okay, my sister lives

ten minutes from here.



We'll surprise her.

lt'll be fun.



-You can eat and walk around.

-She's your half-sister.



But it'll still be    minutes...



not   'cause she's

a half-sister.



lt's wonderful!



-lt is so funny.

-Do you think?



-And it's so sad.

-You're so sweet.



l love it.



You're so great.

You're so kind to me.



You have such a sweet,

kind instinct.



Don't do that.



l count on you

to be critical...



to really be tough.

You're too easy on me.



What's wrong with this?



What's wrong is that it had...



it had no energy.



l became discouraged with it.



lt doesn't release any power.

lt's nothing.



l thought it was really touching.



You knewwhen the boy grew up

he would never learn to love.



l think your problem is...



that you love too easily,

and too much.



l think you're beautiful,

and great...



and too kind to me, and lovely.



But you're not in love with me.



l told you not to fall

in love with me.



But still haven't

figured out why.



Why? Because l'm the boy

in that story...



and l can't love.



So, l don't want you to

get into anything.



You love Hilly.






You love Hilly.



Sure. l love Hilly.



He's my son. lt's easy to love

a little kid.



You love music.



And you love baseball.



Baseball's also easy,

because it has rules, foul lines...



but women are complicated.



Happy birthday.



You're kidding!



Come on, open it up.



You didn't have to

get me anything.



Another sweater, right?



A baseball signed by

the      Giants.



Really! That's so great!



Bobby Thomson!



They were the one genuine miracle

of my lifetime!



When he hit that home run...



it was the only hint l've had

there may be a God.



What made you think of it?



lt was easy.



You are the greatest.



lt's your birthday,

so you get awish.



Anything at all that'll make

your day special.



You are the greatest.

l don't deserve you.



You're too...



Too what?



-We thought we'd stop in to see you.

-Come in!



This is Richard.

This is Cookie.



l'm your Aunt Doris.

You won't remember me.



Remember Uncle Burt?



You haven't seen him

in awhile.



lt's been a long while.



Something to eat?

A cookie or something?



Come in the kitchen.



l gotta go to the bathroom.

Where's the john?



The bathroom! You just go right

through there.



So, l thought we'd drop in.



You're the last person

l ever expected to see.



Don't say that, Doris.



-And what's with Cookie?

-Cookie's the nanny.



You get her from an agency

or massage parlor?



What are you picking on...



Still with the sex pots,

the tramps, the vilda chayes.



She's got a Ph.D.



l bet she got an "A" on her

oral exam.



Give me a break!

l drive upstate...



and take the time to drop in

to say hello.



Can you believe they're

honoring me at Adair? l can't.



Not that l care, but it's great

for Hilly to see me.



The last time l saw him

he was six years old.



You don't exactly contact me either.



l knowwhat you think of me.



Please Doris, don't start in.



Am l wrong?

lt's all in your book.



"Too Jewish",

"professional Jewish".



You attributed it to your ex-wife,

but used the details of my life...



to depict herwith contempt.



-What are you talking about?

-What am l talking about?



You portrayed your 'ex'

as a horror.



And to make her unsympathetic,

you used some of her,...



but mostly you caricatured

my religious dedication.



Because it always enraged you that

l returned to my roots.



What roots? You were awonderful,

sweet kid.



You got me through my childhood.



Then you go to Fort Lauderdale...



and you meet this fanatic,

this zealot.



He fills you full of superstition.



lt's tradition.



Tradition is the illusion

of permanence.



You have no values.

Your life...



it's nihilism, cynicism,

sarcasm and orgasm.



ln France l could run on

that slogan and win.



l'm aJew. l was born aJew.

Do you hate me because ofthat?



And if our parents converted...



to Catholicism a month before you

were born, we'd be Catholics.



They're clubs.

They're exclusionary.



They fosterthe concept of

"the other"...



so you knowwho to hate.



That's enough!



A question: lf aJew

gets massacred...



does it bother you more than

if it's a Gentile...



or a black or a Bosnian?



Yes, it does. l can't help it.

lt's my people.



They're all your people.



Burt is right about you.

You're a self-hating Jew.



l may hate myself,

but not because l'm Jewish.



Not a self-hating Jew,...



but look how he talks about them

in his stories.



Max and Dolly Pincus

were married for    years.



They raised two children...



participated generously at

family weddings and bar mitzvahs.



Max, How are you?



Mazel tov. Here, for Donald.



Thank you, Max.






You got a private minute?



Sure. We're leaving anyhow

in a few minutes.



l don't know if

l should tell you.



What? Tell me what?



Tell me, and l'll tell you

if you should tell me.



My heart is heavy.



Nothing terrible happened

to your husband Phil, did it?



He's been dead for so many years.



When l was in Florida last week...



l ran into a man...



who heard from someone

who knew someone who...






it seems Max has some secret

from his past.



You're talking about my Max?



-A dark secret.

-What kind of a dark secret?






What is by you dark?



l don't know.



What kind of dark secret?

We've been married for    years.



You're his first wife?



Sure l'm his first wife.



Before me, he worked for...






You heard something different?



l heard only a dark secret.

Do l knowwhat?



Who told you?



Wolf Fishbein.



Be careful, Dolly.



That's all l want to say.



Dolly triedputtingElsie's words




butMax's darksecret




Then one daysheraninto




andthe truth wasrevealed.



Try to breathe deeply.



Elsie, you were right.



Fishbein told me atale.



Max, before l met him,

lived in Florida.



He had a store. Groceries.



He was married.



Now it comes out!



To awoman...



with two children.



Max had other children?



No. The woman's children.



From a prior marriage.



He began an affair...



with the downstairs neighbor,




He probably had all his hairthen.



Meanwhile, he got into debt.



Deeper and deeper.



And then carry on

with the neighbor.



Oy, my heart!



He can't get himself out

of a predicament.



So what does he do?



He stole money.



l should be so lucky!



He killed his wife!






The man purchased an ax.



With an ax?



You know Max.

He's nothing with tools.



He can't even hang a picture.



l'm dropping dead!



Plus her children!



Plus the neighbor!






Four people he killed

in one night with an ax.



Your Max?



-And this is not the capper.

-There's more?






What more?



He ate them.



What, are you talking crazy?



He devoured them.



l can't breathe.

Everything is closing in.



Whatever you do...



first hear Max's side.



Max has a side?



He kills his family

and eats them up.



The man has a side?



He was a good husband and

loving father for    years.



You have a daughterwho

went to college.



You have a son who's awriter.



Maybe the best course of action

is to let sleeping dogs lie.



Honey, would you

pass the sour cream?



You haven't touched athing.



Nice weather.



lt's okay.



lt's not just okay.

lt's nice.



All right. What are you getting

so steamed up about?



What makes you such an

authority on the weather?






-All l said was...

-l knowwhat you said.



The fish is delicious.



Wouldn't you rather have meat?



Since when do l eat meat?



With my arteries, you gotta

watch the cholesterol.




-What is the "uh-huh"?



You've been very touchy lately.



Don't interrogate me...



Mr. Max Pinchick!



Where did you hearthat name?



Did you kill your first wife

with an ax?



l got a headache.



Did you chop her up?

Along with your mistress?






lf l tell you why l did it,

do you promise not to nudge me?



Wolf Fishbein said,

in orderto hide the bodies...



you ate them!



So, what are you making a fuss?



Some bury,

some burn...



l ate!



l remember "Max Pincus's

Dark Secret".



And you don't see your

sick view of our parents?



l wrote it when l was young.



The first of many anti-Semitic

pieces ofwork.



Direct from the Wailing Wall.







The Jews haven't suffered enough,

you depict us as cannibals?



No spiritual center.

He's betting on physics and pussy.



Excuse the expression.



He gets cancer, he's straight to

the synagogue in a yarmulke.



Why should l get cancer?

l eat broccoli.



You care about the Holocaust?

Or you think it never happened?



Not only do l knowthat

we lost   million...



the scary thing is that

records are made to be broken.



l knowwhat's out there.

Do you?



He creates offensive Jewish

stereotypes, like in "Der Sturmer".



Max is a version of Daddy,

who you hated.



A man you accuse of being

aterrible parent.



He was aterrible parent.



Thank you for dropping by.



Come again in another   years.



Wouldn't it be a betterworld

if not every group...



thought they had a direct line

to God.



He thinks l'm all

Jewish paranoia.



No. l think you're the

opposite of a paranoid.



l think you have the delusion

that people like you.



-What's the matter?

-Son of a bitch!



What's wrong?



You sick, sick, sick,...



fucking bastard!



What's wrong?



What's wrong? You've been having

an affairwith one of my patients.






You knowwhat

l'm talking about!



Don't speak!



She just told me

the whole thing.




-Who? Who! Who!



Mrs. Pollack. Amy Pollack.



Can l explain something?



No. You cannot explain anything!



Will you calm down?



Don't tell me to calm down!



What's wrong with you?



What is wrong?



l treat this woman

and she exits.



You meet her and you fuck her!



Suppose l told you that

my fucking Amy Pollack...



was a disguised plea for

more closeness with you?



l'd say you're a mental case!



This is like your first wife.

You claimed you loved her.



All the while, you were

having affairs.



My first wife. l told you...



we were in bed one night.

l turned off her...



because the way the light was,

she looked like Max Schmeling.



What do you want me to say?



She was pretty, but l couldn't

get an erection afterthat.



Stop this tap-dancing.

This is bullshit, understand me?



With you it's a different story.

You turned off me!



That's what happened

since Hilly was born.



We live platonically,

like brother and sister.



Don't play "blame the victim"!



What are you talking about?



l'm as much a victim as you!



You think getting a blowjob...



from a big-bosomed    year old

is pleasurable for me.



You're making me sick!

l can't believe this!



-You're overreacting.

-l'm not overreacting!



Are you telling me that

every week for   months...



you've been with her in a hotel?



That's so crazy.

No, of course not!



l rented an apartment.



l'm going to kill you!



Hello, Doctor.

Sorry l'm late.



Mr. Farber.



Take off your coat.

Come in.



l've been losing sleep at night.



l can't shut my eyes at night.



l think l should quit my job,

but l can't bring myselfto do it.



Maybe because my brother-in-law

treats me kindly.



But working for him is taking

it's toll on me emotionally.



Could you excuse me?






You fucked-up fuck!



l can't believe you did this.

You fucking asshole!



You fucked my patient!

You don't fuck somebody's patient.



Fuck you!



Continue, Mr. Farber.



Lost yourthread? You were talking

about quitting yourjob.






l discussed it with my wife.



While she seems to be supportive...



l know she'd rather l stay on.



She idolizes Gordon.



All she does is spend time

with him anyway.



Excuse me one more second,

Mr. Farber.






Continue. l can hear you

from the hallway. Loudly.



l want you to get out of here.



Get all of your

goddamn stufftogether...



and get out of here.



l cannot understand why

the most sophisticated ofwomen...



can't tell the difference between...



a meaningless, hot, passionate

sexual affair...



and a nice, solid, tranquil,

routine marriage.



Tell me, was she the only one,

orwere there others?



Amy Pollack was the only one.

May God strike me dead if l lie.



You're an atheist, Harry!



We're alone in the universe.

Gonna blame that on me too?



You turned off me first.



Oh, please!



No. l gave birth.

When women give birth...



there's a period when

their hormones go crazy.



But they settle.



So, if you're telling me

you're settling, l accept that.



You accept that!



You are so fucking nuts!



Take it easy!



lf you're not happy

in a marriage...



you don't cheat.



And with my patient!



That is a sacred trust!

My patient!



What do you want?

Who else do l meet?



l'm working here. We have the baby.

You're always practising.



We never socialize.



So now you're blaming me...



because we don't go out

enough places where you can...



meet strangers to fuck!



l was merely explaining...



why my choice, of necessity,...



is confined to your practice.



l knew you were mentally ill

before we were married...



but l thought, as atrained

professional, l could help you.



Now, please don't get down

on yourself as atherapist.



Get your shit and your

goddamn clothes...



and get the fuck out of here!



You are the most

irresponsible person...



l've seen in my entire life!



Get out!



Continue, Mr. Farber.






And l mean tonight,




Dad! My Pepsi!



So you got even with your

exwife and sister and l was born.



What do you mean?



From your pen. From your

fertile imagination.



And l mean, imagination.



l wasn't getting even with Joan.



You created me as the

shrewish, Jewish hybrid...



who goes offwith a patient.



An Orthodox divorcee

from Tel Aviv.



She shouldn't have married Burt.

He's turned her into a zealot.



She loves you. lt's not her fault

your father persecuted you.



She was fine until

she wound up...



with this right-wing hawk.



So she disappointed you

in her choice of husbands?



Fuck you! She loves Burt.



She was a great kid.

She had a flair for physics.



Suddenly, she's kosher.



She loves you still...



despite your condescension

towards her life.



Does she love me?



Want to hearwhat

she says about you?



He's not so bad.

He was a very good brother.



But Father never forgave him

when his wife died.



The man is not aJewish man,

that's all!



All right!



Poor Harry, he was always lost.



He never accepted there are

some things you can't know.



The man is incapable

of an act of faith.



Forthat, l pity him.



l'd like to hug him,

like when we were kids.



lf l was upset, he was

a real comfort to me.



What happens to us?



She can't hear you.



And as forJoan...



Joan hates me.



Shouldn't she?



Why? Because l was unfaithful?



No, because when she caught you,

you weren't a man.



You turned into this




wise-cracking, tap-dancing liar.



lf she hadn't been so enraged,

we might have patched things up.



Listen to him delude himself!



Maybe it had tapered a bit

after Hilly was born...



but you had sex pretty regularly.



l've no ideawhy l

took up with her patient.



She was available and adorable.



My marriage was droning on.



What you call "droning on",

most people would call "working".



lfthat's "working",

marriage isn't for me.



lt's not for everyone.



But then l get lonely.



What do you want me to say?



She gave me Hilly and forthat

l'm eternally grateful...



'cause l love him so much.



You can have any one you want.



Can l get two?



Tell you what,

you can get three presents.



Pick any three presents you want.




Look what l found.



lsn't that cool?



This is the chemistry set

you always wanted. lt's perfect.



Don't open it yet.

Let me buy it first.



Larry! What are you doing here?



Buying my nephew

a Power Ranger.



-When did you get back?

-A couple of days ago.



This is Larry.

l told you about Larry.



He's an old friend,

colleague, peer.



-So you got back, when?

-Two days ago.



l took a boat trip

down the Amazon.



-Sounds exciting.




lf you don't mind malaria.



Butterflies the size of doves.

Never seen anything like it.



l can live without that.



lt was astounding.



Sounds it.



So you got back two days ago?



We go back a long way.



We both wanted to be Kafka.



You got slightly closer

than l did.



Yeah. l became the insect.



l'm very excited.

l'm amazed.



We should go out.



Why not come to my house

in East Hampton for aweekend?



Let's not get hysterical.



-l'd love to. lt'd be fun.

-lt's beautiful.



lt's sand in the crotch, ticks...



You get this guy

to leave his room.



He's never had atan.



l've always wanted

to learn howto snorkel.



Snorkel! Where he lives,

there are sharks.



You see photos of guys

with stumps for legs and arms.



-Am l lying?

-Yes. lt's fabulous there.



l'll take you to dinner.



No! We'll take you to dinner.



l'll tell you about the Amazon.



l'd love to hear it.

Sounds amazing.



l'm writing a novel.

l'll tell you about it.



l'm not into the Amazon.

Knowwhat the Amazon is?



Tiny little heads with

lips sewn together.



Can you picture him this way?



We'll take you to dinnertonight.



l'm single, available,

with the soul of a black man!



l smell sulfur.

Do you smell sulfur?



Hilly, did you open

the chemistry set?




We're almost there.



Hilly, wake up.



Wake up. We're almost

at the university.



Dad's being honored.

Limited as my curriculum was.



-Richard, we're there.   minutes.

-Wake up.



Something's wrong.



What's the matter?



l don't think he's breathing!



He's dead!






l was at the doctor's with him.

They said his heart was fine.



l'm scared.



Don't be scared, Hilly.



l'm fine, Dad.



Death is a natural part of life.

You have to embrace them both.



What are we gonna do?



l don't know.

Get back in the car.



l don't want to

sit next to him.



Welcome to Adair University.

l'm Professor Higgins.



We certainly hope you had

a very pleasant trip here.



Would you like some refreshments?



ls he all right?



He's dead. You got one of

them rubber bags?



We've made arrangements

forthe body...



to be delivered to New York City.



l don't think he has

any immediate family.



lf you prefer,...



we can call offthe proceedings.



-l think that's the best idea.




l do.



He'll be all right.

He's here for a purpose.



l'll see that...



the funeral comes off.



l'll see that he's buried...






l understand.



Poor Richard!



The poor guy!



l'm not gonna make it.

l can't go on.



Not if you keep drinking

and popping those pills.



l can't believe this.



My school honors me. l turn up

with a hooker and a dead body.



Take it easy. You're getting

all wound up about nothing.



Look at me.



Look! l'm out of focus!



You look a little pale,

but you're all right.



l'm out of focus. l'm soft!



Calm down. They'll be here

any minute.



lt's humiliating. They're gonna

honor me and l'm a blob.



You look fine.



l'll be sitting

on the dais there, eating.



They'll get seasick

and throw up.



Hold my hand.

Now, relax.



You wanted your son

to see you get honored...



and now you're acting

like ajackass.



But don't you see?

l'm a huge blur.



You're gonna be all right.

l'll talk you down.



l've seen all kinds of guys O.D.

Heroin, acid, crack.



l didn't take any ofthat.

l have nothing.



But you're a pill popper.



That's not what it is.



lt's me. l'm OD'ing on myself.



-l'm a shit.

-Have some coffee.



l don't want any coffee.

l'm a shit.



Talk to me about something.



You like sports?



Sports? Yeah.

l was a pitcher.



When the guy crowded the plate,

l'd throw at his head.



l'm the worst person

in the world.



-Honey, l've seen worse.

-Who's worse than me?






Maybe Hitler, Goering

and Goebbels, but l'm fourth.



Come on. Hold my hand.



-Can you feel my hand?

-Yes, it's warm.



See? lt's just panic.

You're not a blob.



l'm going to get overthis.



l'm having a panic attack.



What sports do you like?



l like them all. l like baseball,

l like basketball.



l was married to awoman

who looked like Max Schmeling.



No, l'm not joking.



All right. lt's time.



l can't get through this

without you. l mean it.



Don't worry about it.



-lf you didn't come with me...

-Don't worry. Come on.



Straighten up.



l gotta get atie.

l gotta get my tie.



All right. Let's go.



Are you ready to be

immortalized by Adair?



We all know yourwork and characters.

Even the obscure ones.



Good reading is

a creative act.



Are you working on anything...



something we can

sink ourteeth into?



l'm in the midst ofwriting...



athing on the Devil

who kidnaps a man's true love...



and takes her down to Hell...



and he goes to retrieve her.



Since it's Hell, l'm able to...



settle lots of old scores.



What's the man like?



lt's me, thinly disguised.



ln fact, l don't think l should

disguise it anymore.



lt's me.






muggers, aggressivepanhandlers







rightwingextremists, killers,

lawyers who appearon TV.









Sorry, that flooris

all filledup.







TVevangelists andthe NRA.









What did you do?



l invented aluminum siding.






Get me out. This is terrible.



You know how l hate

hot weather.



What is he doing here?



He's condemned to

eternal suffering.



Help me!



l don't understand.

l demand to knowthe charges.



"Behaved unconscionably

toward his son.



Said the boy committed a

capital crime by being born."



Yourwife, they told me,

is dead.



But your son, he's thriving.



Why did he fight

not to be born?



Look, l forgive him.



What's over is over.



lt's finished. Let him

go to heaven, please.



l'm aJew! We don't

believe in heaven.



-Where do you want to go?

-To a Chinese restaurant.



Take him to Joy Luck.

l love him despite everything.



Looking for someone?



l'm here to get Fay.



She's not coming with you.



Because you're the head

ofthe underworld...



you can abduct her

and get away with it?



l'm going to kidnap her back.



-What are you laughing at?

-You match your powers against mine?



-You want to knowwhy?

-Yeah, l do.



l'm sorry. Forgive me

for laughing.






l'm more powerful because

l'm a bigger sinner.



Because you're a fallen angel...



and l never believed in

God or Heaven of any of it.



l'm strictly quarks

and particles and black holes.



All the other stuff

is junk to me.



And also l do terrible things.



l've cheated on all my wives

and none ofthem deserved it.



l sleep with whores.



l drink too much and

l take pills...



and l lie and l'm

vain and cowardly...



and l'm prone to violence.



l once almost ran over

a book critic.



But l swerved at the last second.



You ever had two women at once?



Yes, l did. And l'll tell you

something else.



l didn't care it was exploitive.

And something else...



-They were sisters.




Yes! They were two

blond WASP sisters.



-Not the Sherman twins?

-Yes, the Sherman twins!



They're here.



The Sherman twins are here?




Do you know Sandra Pepkin?



Do l know Sandra Pepkin? Only the

best blowjob in the Hadassah.



So, if you know

Sandra Pepkin...



l fucked her best friend,

the cripple. Pearl.



-Pearl in the wheelchair?




Speaking of handicaps,

do you know Marie Taylor?



Yes, but her l don't count.

Marie Taylor is dyslexic.



She put her Tampax

in her nose.



-Ever fuck a blind girl?

-No, that l never did.



Oh, they're so grateful.



-Would you like a drink?

-You're terrible.



Could l get some tequila?



l've got great tequila.

Make yourself at home.



Want the air conditioner on?



-You're air-conditioned here?

-Sure. Fucks up the ozone layer.



l could be very comfortable here.



l'll tell you something:

l love it here.



l wouldn't be any place else.



-There you go.

-Thank you.



l've had job offers in yourworld,

but why be an employee?



Here, l'm my own boss.

l'm free.



What jobs did they offer?



Fortwo years l ran

a Hollywood studio...



but you can't trust those people.



l agree. Betterto rule

down here...



than to serve in heaven.

That's Milton.



To evil!

lt keeps everything humming.



So you kidnapped Fay?



Yes, l did.



Some women are turned on

by aggressive behavior.



So, if l kidnapped her back?



You, kidnap?



Not your style.

You're not a fun guy.



You're too serious.

Too angry at life.



l got a lot to be angry at.



Who doesn't?



But sooner or later,

you gotta back off.



lt's like Vegas.

You're up, you're down.



But in the end,

the house always wins.



Doesn't mean you

didn't have fun.



No, one thing you're not

is a kidnapper.






Listen to me!



Out of my way! Can't you see

you're with a kidnapper!



You're going to have to

come with me.



You're under arrest, Mr. Block



l gotta put the cuffs on you.



-He's about to be honored.

-How can l kidnap my own son?



We got drugs!



Let me go, bitch!

Let me go!



-Get them in the car.

-Get off me, bitch!



Can't l be honored,

then arrested?



We can't do that. Sorry.






Prostitute in your car

in possession of marijuana.



Possession of an

unlicensed firearm.



l told you about the firearm.

A crazy woman shot at me.



l got it away from her.

l was gonna hand it in.



-l gotta make a phone call.

-You made your call.



Doesn't count. lt was to my

girlfriend's answering service.



-To stop her marrying.

-You also called your sister.



My sisterwasn't in.



You called your lawyer.



He was at Canyon Ranch.

l can never get my lawyer!



Can l give you some advice?



You're in deep shit.



This time l think

you've really had it.



-lt was your ideato kidnap Hilly.

-lt wasn't my idea.



l made ajoke. You don't act

on every impulse.



You gottatell me the truth.

ls it better being dead?



No, it's not really.

But there's one good thing.



You don't get jury duty.

But you have no options.



lt's not for you.



l'm no good at life.



No, but you write well.



That's different. l can manipulate

characters and plots.



You create your own universe,

nicerthan the world we have.



l can't function in this world.

l'm a failure at life.



l don't know. l think you bring

pleasure to a lot of people.



But even that's drying up.



Forthe last months...



l've been unable to come up

with a meaningful idea.



Make peace with your demons...



and your block will pass.



lt sounds so trite...



but l just want to be happy.



To be alive is to be happy.

Take it from me.



Block? Come on.



Some people put up your bail.



My bail?



That's right. This way.






-We got the phone message.

-Came right from ourwedding.



-You did?

-We're on ourway to our honeymoon.



-You got married?

-You have to ask?



l can't believe it! ln the end

you chose him over me!



-l can't fathom this!

-You'd insult me...



afterwe ran from the altar

to bail you out.



l know you're claustrophobic.



Plus, you'll get buggered by

every con in the cell block.



You should be in there!



Because you stole her from me.



He did not steal me.



l love him.



l can't fathom this.



l appreciate your coming, but...



why? Why not me?



You told me not to fall in love

with you, so l didn't.



How could you listen to me?

You know l'm crazy!



You were my mentor. That's why.



But you were sleeping

with you mentor.



So? l slept with

my gynecologist.



What has that

got to do with it?



You gonna snorkel down the Amazon

with him when you could've had me?



l'll never be the writer you are.

l knowthat.



You put art into yourwork.

l put it into my life.



l can make her happier.



l love you.



l do. lt's just that

l'm in love with Larry.



l'm his wife.



l love you too, Harry.

Give us your blessing...



so we can go and enjoy our

honeymoon. Okay?



We'll be in Santa Fe a month.

When we come back...



we'll go out.

We're friends.



He's taking you to the desert

for your honeymoon?



Yeah. You'd nevertake me

to the desert.



The desert is cactus.



lt's Heela monsters, Gila monsters.

Lizards, is the desert.



-Harry, please!

-Give us your blessing, please?



Give 'em your blessings...



before l throw you back in the

fucking cell and l bugger you!



l don't knowwhat to say.

l love you.



This guy...



l've loved...



l give up.



-We'll get you home.

-What am l going to say?



Santa Fe you're going to take her?

With the tacos?



What about the honoring ceremony?



We haven't had the ceremony.



The police interrupted.



What, am l dreaming?



Everybody dreams.



Come on!



Professor Clark

has everything planned.



Can l bring Hilly?



lt's your dream.



Stebbins Hall?



Everyone is waiting

to honor you.



After all, you created them.



l love all of you. Really.



You've given me some ofthe

happiest moments of my life...



You've even saved

my life at times.



And now, you've actually

taught me things.



And l completely grateful.



The author's message is...



"know yourself",

stop kidding yourself.



Accept your limitations

and get on with your life.



lt's amazing. To me...



it's a really

interesting character.



A guy...



who can't function well in life...



but can only function in art.



lt's sad in away and also funny.

Good for a novel.



Your books all seem sad

on the surface.



Which is why l.

like deconstructing them.



Underneath they're happy.

You just don't know it.



l tell you.

l feel like l'm in a dream.



This, for me, is like the best dream

l've had in months.






l like it!



A characterwho's too...



neurotic to function in life...



but can only function in art.



Notes foranovel.






Rifkin leda...












Hehadlongago come

to this conclusion:



Allpeople knowthe same truth.



Ourlives consistofhow

we choose to distortit.



Onlyhis writing was calm...



his writing, whichhad,

inmore ways than one...



savedhis life.




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