Voila! Finally, the Memoirs Of A Geisha
script is here for all you quotes spouting fans of the Rob Marshall movie
based on the Arthur Golden novel with Zhang Ziyi, Gong Li, Michelle Yeoh, yadda
yadda. This script is a transcript that was painstakingly
transcribed using the screenplay and/or viewings of Memoirs Of A Geisha. I know, I know, I still need to get the cast names in there and I'll be eternally
tweaking it, so if you have any corrections, feel free to
drop me a line. You won't
hurt my feelings. Honest.
A story like mine should never be told.For my world is as
forbidden as it is fragile.Without its mysteries it cannot survive.I certainly wasn't born
to the life of a Geisha.Like so much in my strange lifeI was carried there by the current.The first time I knew
my mother was sick,was when my father threw
the fish back into the sea.That night we went hungry, to
understand emptiness he told us.Mother always said that my
sister Satsu was like wood.As rooted to the earth as a Sagura
tree. But she told me I was like water.Water can carve its
way, even through stone.And when trapped,
water makes a new path.
-These are the girls from Tanaka?
-Sisters, yes, from Yurida.
This one maybe, the other one no.
Show your respect for mother. You
must not speak, I will answer for you.
Kneel, and head down,
never look her in the face.
-How old are you?
-She’s year of the rooster.
Where is my sister?
Let me see those eyes.
Look at me.
-Too much water.
- But mother, a little water is good to guard against fire.
You wouldn't have to worry about the
okea burning, losing all your people, no....
These country girls! Too
late to send her back now.
Pumpkin, keep her quiet,
mother is downstairs
Let me go!
Let me go! Let me go!
-Mother will hear you! She's got a bamboo stick.
-I want my sister. Satsu!
I cried too at first.
You know it is easier if you just forget
everything that happened before you came to the okea.
If you impress mother,
and do exactly as she says,
She will send you to
school to be a Geisha.
-A Geisha, like Hatsumomo.
You will get to drink
sake, and sleep until noon.
-Where is my sister?
-Probably in another okea in Hanonoke.
Your family sold you to this
house, you live here now.
Outside you wear these, inside these.
We don't display our
naked feet like monkeys.
It's not flesh we're selling here,
This is a Geisha house.
Remember to always honour this okea.
You listen, you learn, now get to work.
Be quiet Hatsumomo is sleeping.
-Pumpkin, when can I go outside?
-Outside the okea? You can't.
It’s not allowed.
How will I find Satsu?
You can't just walk out to
every house in Hanamachi.
Do you know how many there are?
Two nights ago, Hatsumomo had to
stay at the Tea-house until dawn,
thats what she told mother.
But she was really here
with a man, the whole...
Why can't you be quiet?!
So, this is the new arrival.
A pity she still stinks of fish.
Stay out of my room.
Your fingers smell .I can't
have you touching my things!
Only reason mother tolerates Hatsumomo
is because she brings in good money.
Never forget it is Hatsumomo
who pays for your supper,
the clothes on your back.
By the time she was twenty, she had
already earned back her purchase price.
She has been the talk of
the Hanamachi ever since.
-These are all hers?
-Certainly not, they belong to the okea.
A Geisha needs an elegant wardrobe,
just like an artist needs ink.
If she's not properly dressed
then she is not a true Geisha.
-Nobody told me what a Geisha is.
-You will find out soon enough.
I have news for you child, mother has determined
that it is off to school with you.
You are to become Geisha!
Quick quick, don't be
late, and you will be late.
I'm going to run, I'm
going to find Satsu.
Not yet you don't.
You will ruin your own
chances, and mine too.
Please,stay with me.
Look for your sister's name later!
You are late!
Chiyo, where is granny's food?
Where have you
been? It’s freezing cold!.
Close the window. Hai! (yes).
Chiyo, Chiyo, come quickly.
Hatsumomo is at the bath-house
-Here tidy up.
-But she told me to stay ... !
Hatsumomo does not run this okea.
Look who's in my room...
Did you touch this?
I can just hear the General now why
Hatsumomo, you used to smell of jasmine,
What’s this new perfume? Blowfish?
I told you to never to touch my
things. Can’t you understand why?
Because your general will
say, Hatsumomo you stink!
At least you don't smell as bad as
your sister.You know, she was here...
She came by looking for you.
Was I wrong to ask her to leave?
Please, tell me where she is.
Only if you swear yourself
to me first.Yes? Huh?
Now get out!
Hatsumomo you'll wake the entire
house. Your big sister is thirsty, so am I,
go and get us some beer.
-I'm not in the mood for beer.
-I know what you're in the mood for.
And his name is Koichi
What did you say Korin?
I'm sorry.I forgot.
You're just jealous
someone cares for me!
Guess who this belongs to? A Geisha as desired as
she is ought to keep a closer eye on her clothes.
How did you get it? Bribed her maid.
We can't, give it to her.
Chiyo, come, come.
Now then little Chiyo, it is
time to practice your calligraphy.
Remember, you swore yourself to me. Yes.
Don't let anybody see you.
This will teach the great Mameha.
-That kimono was worth more than you.
-Careful, you will hurt yourself more than her.
Kneel. What have you done to Hatsumomo?
-I haven't done anything, I promise you.
-Her little trick with than kimono will cost you.
Whatever you have done to anger
her, you'd be wise to stop, now!
Lie down. I will beat you hard,
So mother does not beat you harder.
I told you not to let anybody see you.
I have kept my promise,
so tell me, where is she?
She is in the next ...
in the house called Tatsuyo.
In the pleasure district.
Trust me little Chiyo,
you will find her.
Tatsuyo? Satsu, Satsu, Satsu…
Satsu, Satsu, no! Satsu! Satsu!
Chiyo, what took you so
long? But Satsu, I tried...
I went to your okea weeks ago,
they laughed and turned me away.
Please, I did not know
I’ve missed you so much.
Let’s leave, tonight.
But we need money too.
I know I can steal some, first
thing tomorrow… No, please, tonight!
No, tomorrow, meet me at the
Saturn-May bridge, as soon as it's dark.
Now I have to go.Quickly
before someone catches you.
What if I cannot get away?
Be there Chiyo, we only have one chance.
Once I’ve left I can't go
back.I’ve waited as long as I can.Now go.
What is she doing here? She’s seen us!
Stupid girl, why have you come
back? You’re probably trying to escape!
- Koichi please!
-Look at this, we're sneaking around like criminals!
-What's going on?
Show your face!
Look mother, I caught her stealing.
She was running away
with her sister,the whore!
-You little thief!
-No, she's lying.
After all we've done for her!
I saw her with a man, right
there! His name is Koichi!
Shut up! We should kick her out.
Take her arms.
You are never to see him again, huh?
What do you think? A
Geisha is free to love?
Never! Bolt the gate.No
one is leaving this okea!
Doctor Ohura is very expensive. You
seem to be racking up quite a debt, huh?
Kimono destroyed, Geisha school, rice and
pickles, train ticket,Mr. Bekku, ... all this...
… on top of the money I paid Mr. Tanaka?
And for what? And now I hear
that your sister has run away.
She didn't wait for you and
now she can never come back.
You must forget you
ever had a sister, huh?
We are your only family now.
Dear Satsu and little Chiyo, as one
who was once an orphan child myself,
this humble person is sorry to inform you,that six
weeks after you left for your new life in Myoko…
… the suffering of your honoured
mother came to it's end …
And only a few weeks afterwards your
honoured father departed this world as well.
This humble person feels confident that both your honoured
parents have found their places in paradise.
At the temple there is a poem
called "loss",carved into the stone.It has three words, but the
poet has scratched them out.You cannot read loss, only feel it.My father and mother had left this
life, my sister I never heard from again.I had dishonoured the okea,so
mother had other plans for me.I would pay back my debt,
year,after year,after year.Not as a Geisha, as her slave.
It is too pretty a day to be
so unhappy. Did you fall down?
Why so shy? Nothing to be ashamed of.
We all stumble from time to time.
You see that enchanting lady in green?
Once, when she was just a miko (an apprentice
Geisha), she fell clean off her wooden shoes.
-It's true, I did.
-And now look at her, so elegant!
Mr. Chairman, shouldn't we hurry?We
will miss the beginning.
We see the Spring dances
every year.We can spare a moment.
What's your name? Don't
be afraid to look at me.
Do you like sweet plum or cherry?
You mean to eat?
I like sweet plum myself.
None of us find much kindness
in this life, as we should.
Both kinds please.
My children wait for these every Spring.
-Now I am a Geisha too.
-So you are.
How did you come by
such surprising eyes?
-My mother gave them to me.
-Generous of her wasn't it?
As you have been to me.
Smile for me won't you?
There now, that is your gift to me.
This will buy your
supper. Now promise me one thing.
Next time you take a tumble, no frowns.
In that moment I changed from a
girl, facing nothing but emptiness
to someone with purpose.I saw that to
be a Geisha could be a stepping stone
to something else: a place in his world.
The money the chairman had given me,
could have bought fish and rice for a month,
but I gave it back in prayer,
keeping only his handkerchief.
I asked one day to become a Geisha,
and then somehow, to meet him again.
-chan? I can't find my coat, did you found it yet?
Pumpkin it's time to go.
I found it.
I couldn't sleep last night I was
so worried about my stupid hair.
Am I lopsided? You look beautiful.
With your hair like that you look
more like a pumpkin than ever.
Don't fold your neck
forward like a tortoise.
She's not ready? We will be late.
Poor pumpkin, her debut and
everybody will be staring at you.
Hurry up. This time, do your ... before you play, when
you make a fool of yourself your big sister gets the blame
Stop crying, your face will run.
The winter I turned fifteen
I saw the chairman again,
But that wasn't the only surprise
fate brought me that season.
Along with the snow came
a most unexpected visitor.
Why is she here?
Chiyo, Chiyo, open the gate!
Now that your beloved granny has
gone you have no need for a maid.
I would never question the great Mameha,
but you could choose anyone in the Hanamachi.
You flatter me, truly.
I would give you my pumpkin if she
weren't already tied to Hatsumomo.
Please I would never dream of asking. Besides,
I can always sell Chiyo to Mrs. Tetsuyo.
With your eye for beauty
and nose for talent,
surely you can see what a
terrible waste that would be.
If you were not the kind hearted
Geisha I know you to be,
then I might think that you were
scheming against Hatsumomo.
Then I'm grateful Mrs. Nita that
you don't have a suspicious mind.
Perhaps you can
pique my interest with...
I will cover Chiyo's schooling, all
her expenses, until after her debut.
Now I am confident that you are teasing.
I could not be more sincere.
If Chiyo has not repaid her debt
within six months after her debut.
-Impossible, too little time!
- Then I will pay you twice over.
-No Geisha could ever...
- I am certain you will not object to one trivial condition.
-If Chiyo erases her debt in the time allowed,
You will not have any part
in her future earnings.
It's too good to be true,
Mameha is up to something.
She isn't in it for the money,
that much is for certain.
Rumour has it, ever since the Prime
Minister bought her misuage(virginity)
-She's been rich.
Absurd hard to think
that she noticed Chiyo.
-It's that kimono, she remembers how you
destroyed it, now she wants to get even.
An odd picture isn't it?
Hatsumomo sweeping into tea-house after
tea-house with our Pumpkin, and Mameha with our maid.
I'm so far behind, I will
never catch up to you.
-Don’t worry, I will help you.
You are never to speak to her
again, now you are rivals!
This is how it was, this
tiny world of women,
friend turned against friend.
And now the two greatest
Geisha in Myoko at war over me.
Hatsumomo at my back, Mameha calling,
offering me the chance to become one of
those elegant women I had seen on the bridge.
floating in a silk
kimono, the chairman at my side.
-Chiyo is my new protoge.
-As lovely as her big sister.
And with eyes the colour of rain.
The baron is a very special
man to me, my “Danina,”
someday if you are fortunate,
you will have a patron too.
Don't kneel, you aren't
a servant girl anymore.
Step into the light.
-I see water in you.
-Does that displease you?
Water is powerful. It can wash away
earth, put out fire, and even destroy iron.
But you have not drawn on
those strengths have you?
-About your kimono...
You may apologise if you wish.
Why that is a perfect
bow, for a pig farmer...
Don't drop your head, fingertips together,
elbows in, no weight on the hands.
As for the kimono, I’m no fool Chiyo.
-Hatsumomo cannot tolerate competition
-She is jealous of you...
Not me I'm afraid,
someone closer to home.
Not like a horse.
Slide your foot forward.
That's it. Now walk. You
are a magnificent Geisha.
Tell me Chiyo, does Mrs.
Nita ever speak of the future?
Not to me.
Well someday soon she will
have to name an heir.
One of her own Geisha to succeed her.
Strange isn't it that she
hasn't adopted Hatsumomo?
That would be like releasing
a tiger from it's cage.
You have a gift for expression.
And if Mrs. Nita adopts
Pumpkin that is hardly a threat…
… but a young girl
with eyes like rain...
But Mrs. Nita would never choose me.
-On the contrary, that is our goal.
Of course. If you do not inherit the
okea, then we will all be at the tiger's mercy.
Water is always in such a
hurry, perhaps that is just as well.
We have no time to lose.
We must transform you.
And what takes years,you
must learn in months.
Say I’m entertaining the baron.
Like so many clients he's trapped
in an arranged marriage.
So in the tea-house when he's
seeking my company instead,
I reward him like this with
a glimpse of my wrist.
Seeing this demure little trace of
naked skin, well it gives him pleasure.
Or when you're sitting down, for the
briefest moment, press your leg against his.
Always by accident,of course.
Mameha, when does a
Geisha choose her patron?
I'm afraid it's the other way around, focus on
your studies Chiyo, music, the art of conversation,
That's the surest way to attract a
patron on your feet, not off them!
Remember Chiyo, Geisha are not
courtesans, and we're not wives.
We sell our skills, not our bodies.
We create another secret
world, a place only of beauty.
The very word Geisha means
artist, and to be a Geisha …
… is to be judged as
a moving work of art.
Agony and beauty, for
us, live side by side.
Your feet will suffer,
your fingers will bleed.
Even sitting and
sleeping will be painful.
You cannot call yourself a true Geisha until you
can stop a man in his tracks with a single look.
-No one can do that.
-Choose someone for me.
The grey hat...
You are ready.
Hurry up, you're not making money.
Standing there gawking at yourself.
This binds us together
forever as sisters.
Today you leave your childhood
and cast away your name.
From this day forward you
will be known as Sayuri.
When Mameha granted me my new name,
I felt little Chiyo disappear
behind a white mask with red lips.
I was a miko now, an apprentice Geisha.
From that moment I told myself when I make tea,
when I pour sake, when I dance, when I tie my kimono…
… it will be for the
chairman, until he finds me...
… until I am his.
Friends, we have the pleasure to witness the
debut of another apprentice Geisha, cheers!
I remember those eyes what was her name?
Determined isn't she? If there had been a drop of tea in
that tea-pot I believe Sayuri would have gotten it out!
I told you Mr. Baron, it
is her very first time.
What a beautiful dance, yes Pumpkin?
her fans are so hypnotic, that
you may not even notice her feet!
What's her name? Her name is Sayuri.
A name as sweet as she is. I'm afraid
that these days even a common chambermaid…
… can call herself a Geisha. So it's nice to
see such a sincere young apprentice, isn't it?
- Surely you would like to thank Hatsumomo for her gracious compliment.
There is so much I would
like to say to Hatsumomo.
Sometimes the smartest
remark is silence.
What better advice to follow
you than your own? Sayuri!
-I was a miko myself once.
- Of course! But it's been such a very long,
long, long... long, long, time.
I shall destroy you.
She can destroy you. She
would spread rumours.
Stalk you from
tea-house to tea-house.
Then steal your clients, all in the hope that
Mrs. Nita adopts Pumpkin instead of you.
-What can we do?
-We've got to outwit her,
to find a place somewhere beyond her reach, where
you can practice your skills without any interference.
-Your first sumo match.
Today you will meet (Chairman) Iwamura.
He is head of the Iwamura electric
company in Osaka. My client for years.
We will entertain him and his partner
Nobu. You may find Nobu quite a challenge.
He does not like Geisha.
Be attentive, I will do the rest.
Chairman Iwamura, President Nobu, this
is my new younger sister Sayuri.
Injured in Manchuria, war hero.
Sayuri, is this your first sumo match?
Nobu-san will have to educate you, I
cannot tell one wrestler from the next.
That is the Chairman's diplomatic
way of saying he hates sumo.
Did you notice our contribution?
We are harnessing the power of water to
bring electricity to some of the smaller villages.
It was in the newspaper wasn't it?
Ah, the Chairman's picture, yes, you
compensate for all my shortcomings don't you?
May I ask, How does someone
harness the power of water?
You should never ask an engineer
to explain a thing because he will!
Let the girl watch sumo.
Hatsumomo, that snake! Quick,
turn your attention to Nobu.
Hatsumomo finds him repulsive,
she would never steal him away.
Mislead her, go.
Perhaps Nobu-san would be kind
enough to explain the rules of the match.
Three things matter in
life... … sumo, business, and war,
Understand one, you know them
all. But why should a Geisha care?
You spend your time
plucking strings and dancing.
I humbly beg to differ.
What is sumo but a dance between giants?
What is business but a
dance between companies?
I'd like to know about
every kind of dance.
They are throwing salt
to purify the ring.
That man is Miyagi, the
greatest fighter in Japan.
But he's so tiny! Only
compared to his opponent.
Miyagi may use...
Are you listening? Yes.
Hataki-comi is a movement a smaller
opponent uses to throw a larger opponent off balance.
Victory does not always
belong to the powerful!
Look, there, in his eyes!
I'm afraid our time has come
to a close. Going so soon?
Not yet! I want her to see.
Now that is Hataki-comi! I
see now why you like sumo.
You can never judge a man's
power by his appearance alone.
Mameha! You may bring her again.
I scoured the newspaper for
the Chairman's photograph.Anything to preserve
our moment together.A moment, stolen, when I was
forced to turn my attention to Nobu.In that instant I
felt the world shift...But not my own determinationI made a secret promise.Along with his picture, I would lock
away my heart, and save it for him.
Tonight we will deliver a quick
blow to Hatsumomo - Hataki-comi.
-How? -We will meet
Nobu-san at the Sunashima restaurant.
-But first a visit to Dr. Crab.
It's a little nickname
he's earned over the years.
- Hold still!
I have something in mind, a plan.
Now cut your leg where I've marked it.
-Or I will do it for you.
-Have you gone mad?
-Do you trust me or don't you?
Go ahead, do it!.
Careless with the
sowing scissors were you?
Right through your beautiful
kimono. Such a pity.
It won't leave a scar will
it? Sayuri is a special girl…
… at a very special time in her life.
Yes, with those eyes! You
must be quite a commodity.
Clean cut, won't leave
a mark, I promise.
But I had best prescribe
a bit of antiseptic.
Your honourable sister says
cut your leg? You cut your leg.
She says follow me? You follow
her. My life had turned into a game…
… and only she knew the rules.
At the right moment slip
it to Nobu – discreetly.
He will know what it means.
-You have kept us waiting.
-Please forgive us Nobu-san.
The Chairman thinks I should take more
pleasure in life, music and the theatre.
What is your impression?
It is useless to push
your cart sideways,
one could not wish Nobu-san to
be anyone other than Nobu-san.
I could not agree more. I
owe this man everything.
He gives me too much credit as usual.
Probably, cheers! Cheers!
It is a trinket, I found
it a few days ago...
Nobu-san, I had no idea you were so
sentimental. Call it my “new leaf.”
My mother... my mother, she
used to wear something similar.
You do not like it?
Forgive me, I've never
received a present before.
What a beautiful comb.
Such a joyous moment Sayuri.
You're finally getting what you deserve.
And now will you excuse us please, we
have another engagement, many in fact.
You are most kind.
-Now give this one to Dr. Crab.
-I want to trust you I do…
… but you have to tell
me what's going on.
-I am ensuring your future.
-But tell me how, I beg you.
-I am trying to orchestrate a bidding war.
-Your most precious attribute.
-And what is that?
Your misuage (virginity).
Did mother ever tell you
about the eel in the cave?
Well, every once in a while, a man's
eel likes to visit a woman's cave.
Yes I know. You do?
I live with Hatsumomo.
Well, your cave is untouched... men
like that. We call this misuage (virginity).
And to become a full Geisha we must
sell this to the highest bidder.
Did you sell yours?
It was the largest sum ever paid
- Ten thousand yen.
I freed myself from
debt, and so will you.
When you slip the rice-cake to Dr. Crab it is a sign
that says your misuage (virginity),is ripe for sale.
The Dr. has no desire to see
you tonight... or any night.
-Pumpkin! Hatsumomo went to see Dr.
Crab, yes? -I have to go Chiyo-chan.
-I do not know.
Of course you know! You
shadow her every step.
-You expect me to betray my big sister.
-Has she made you cruel as well?
-My Pumpkin always told the truth.
Tonight, we went to the tea-house to see Dr. Crab. I
sat outside but I could still hear through the screen...
... and Hatsumomo then said to him “I live in the same Okea as
Sayuri, and did you know that she brings men back to her room?”
“No” he said, “they come in, sailors, and fishermen too.” And
the Dr. looked queezy like he didn't want to hear any more,
But she kept going. And Hatsumomo
said to him “what's the matter?”
“have I told you more than you wanted to
know?” I'm so sorry, I wanted to say something…
… but how could I Chiyo-chan? … how?
Am I really like her?
-Of course not.
-Is Mameha-san cruel to you
too? -No, she's so kind to me...
... but sometimes I worry she's taken
me further from the things I want.
-That man Nobu. Do you really like him?
That's what I thought.
Do you like somebody else?
Don't worry about me
Chiyo-chan. I'll be fine. Better than fine.
Mother plans to adopt me, so my dream of
having some place to live out my life may come true.
I have to go.
-We could still win Sayuri.
Hatsumomo has poisoned
Dr. Crab against me.
Forget about him, there are
plenty of other fish in the sea.
The Chairman has been kind...
Sayuri! Nobu and the
Chairman are business partners,
they would never bid against one
another. It is time we cast a wider net.
Suppose there was a night in Myoko. Hundreds
of men all in one place, eager to bid for you.
-What do you mean?
-Where you are the object of all their fantasies.
The most famous Geisha in the Hanamachi.
-But I'm not.
-You will be…
-Who is responsible for this?
-I'm asking you Mother.
-How come Sayuri gets to be the lead?
It's your own fault. You
should practice more.
What did Mameha do, speak
to the director in private?
Not every Geisha uses
that kind of currency.
I'm looking forward to your performance. You
know how I adore watching you dance... Chiyo.
They've all come,
the Baron, Nobu-san, our beloved
Hatsumomo, and that dapper General of hers..
Anybody else? And even
your old friend, Dr. Crab.
Big-sister, what if I dance
poorly, what if I disgrace myself,
and no one takes interest?
Sssh,you will be glorious.
Now, it's time.
-Sayuri, you remember the Doctor.
-I hope my performance pleased you Doctor.
-Aah, you danced with such profound fury.
-I most humbly thank you.
It seems you've once again
caught the Doctor's interest.
And I am most grateful. If
you have heard any gossip...
-Then I hope you will follow your own advice.
-And what would that be, pray tell?
-Seek a second opinion.
Ah Chairman. Sayuri gave such a
passionate performance, don't you think?
Mameha, did you invite the Chairman
to my estate this weekend?
-It's my annual blossom viewing party.
-Baron, I told you I can't go.
-I have an urgent appointment.
-Taking care of a little nuisance,
or was that a naughty secret? Baron,
wouldn't Sayuri look stunning…
-among the flowers on your estate?
-Yes, very pretty.
-Be sure to send her along.
-With a chaparone of course,
I'm certain Mr. Bekku will oblige.
That's a fine idea Baron, but Sayuri
is required at the theatre.
-Mameha, I expect her there.
-Nobu, coming Saturday?
All that way to see a cherry
tree? I will leave that to the Chairman.
[You were] wonderful tonight. Excuse me.
-If you would rather not go.
-I'd like to go very much.
Then be on your guard, every moment. There
is a reason Hatsumomo wants you there.
Trust me, I know my Baron Sayuri.
He has a weakness for beautiful women.
And now, you are the most celebrated
Geisha in all Myoko.
The most desired as well.
Sayuri, today, even the cherry
blossoms are envious of her.
There's something I've been wanting
to say to you for some time now.
I'd like to...
to thank you for your
attention to Nobu-san.
Nobu can be a difficult man.
So you see dear, at parties,
sake only in moderation.
And he disdains Geisha.
… he’s fond of you.
Because you admire
him, I respect him more.
He would never tell you
himself. He's far too modest.
We were fighting in Manchuria
together, and there was an explosion.
He protected me from the worst of it.
As you might imagine,
I owe him quite a debt.
Nobu has taught me a great
deal, patience, for one thing.
I, in turn, have tried to teach him.
You have to savour life while you can.
The legend of the cherry blossom.
That is why Nobu likes you. We
must not expect happiness Sayuri,
it is not something we deserve. When
life goes well, it's a sudden gift,
it cannot last forever.
Ah Sayuri, there you go.
I have a present for you.
Mameha asked me to show
you my kimono collection.
It's quite venerated, my
grandfather and father,
collected kimono before me.
I've given a number of valuable kimono to
Mameha. I like to give presents to beautiful girls.
It's for you.
Come, have a closer look.
Isn't it lovely?
-Try it on.
-The Baron is too kind.
I will happily try it on, with
Mameha, when the Baron returns to Myoko.
Who knows when that would be?
Put it on now, don't be shy.
I have experience in knotting
kimonos, and untying them as well.
Please, Mr. Bekku is waiting.
Mr. Bekku is waiting for no one.
Please stop now!
Sayuri, I only want to have a look.
No harm in that. Any
man would do the same.
I heard a message on the wind.
So careless! You have
ruined all our plans!
-I did nothing.
-Sayuri, do not insult me.
I know the Baron better than that..
-He gave me a kimono.
-You sold yourself for a kimono!
I did not sell myself. Today is the day I
accept bids for your misuage (virginity).
But what kind of price can I hope to
demand with a finger pointed at your back?
-He looked at me that's all big-sister. -You
will be examined at the misuage ceremony.
-If you are found to be worthless...
-I am not worthless!
I am not worthless.
How much longer is this
bidding going to take?
Besides, who wants a plum when
someone has already had a bite?
What is it? Twenty yen, thirty?
-This can't be the right amount.
-I trust you agree, I have won the wager.
Sayuri's made history, no misuage
has ever been sold for more.
Not even mine. Fifteen thousand yen.
Unbelievable. Thank you sister.
Of course none of it will go
to Sayuri, or to you Mameha.
It goes to this okea. All fifteen
thousand yen. To this estate.
-I do not understand.
-That, Sayuri, you will inherit as my adopted daughter.
-You wouldn't dare!
I'm entitled to do as I choose.
But you promised the okea to Pumpkin!
Look at her, still a
virgin apprentice. Pumpkin!
Can't you adopt us both? Quiet Sayuri.
Now I'm no fool. Pumpkin would
only be Hatsumomo's puppet.
How long would it take before
you kick us out onto the street?
-I have given you my life.
-Yes, and your impudence, your vile temper.
Who paid for that kimono on your back,
The rest in your ... The tobacco
in that paper of yours? Who?
Don't exaggerate! You have
never even had a patron.
Don't say it, don't say it! You
chose that no good Koichi.
Peeking through your window at
all hours of the night. Quiet!
Not like a Geisha, like
a common prostitute.
Besides, you are getting old. But Sayuri,
Sayuri's destined to become a legend.
My dear Mother. We will see. Won't we?
Sayuri, your room is too
small. Take Hatsumomo's.
From now on, your name is Nita Sayuri..
-May I congratulate you both.
Big sister.Everything we
wanted you made happen. Thank you.
-May I ask who?
-Was Nobu disappointed?
-Nobu did not bid. It was against his mighty principles.
Dr. Crab was opposed my the Baron, my
Baron. Do you want to know the truth Sayuri?
He was the highest bidder. Forgive
me, but I let it go to Dr. Crab..
-I think you understand why.
-I swear to you, I am innocent.
Of course you are. No man would ever bid
so much for a thing he had already taken.
It was my own fault.
I did not protect you.
Celebrate this moment Sayuri. Tonight, the
lights in the Hanamachi all burn for you..
You are a full geisha now.
What are you doing in my room?
I came to congratulate you.
Please get out.
Why little Chiyo, look what I've found.
His initials, how elegant.
You've been hiding your
love for a long time.
-The sacrifice every Geisha must make.
Is this where you keep
it? Next to your heart?
Give it back!
Give it back!
I could be her. Now I
am Geisha to this house.I could be her. Were we so
different? She loved once. She hoped once.I might be looking into my own future. Until
the real future came falling from the air.
-Korin, have you see Sayuri?
-No... I don't know.
Chairman! They are sending us
away but they won't say where.
Osaka, but you must not go.
The city is a prime target.
Get your things, quickly.
Nobu and I are trying to find safe
havens for as many people as we can.
Here, work certificates, nurse's aid. A
friend of mine is the chief surgeon in Kamioka.
What about Sayuri? Can't we go together?
Don't worry, she will be taken care of.
Here we go.
Sayuri come. This is Alima, he
will take you into the hills.
Nobu has got a friend there, a kimono
maker. Anyone stops you, show them this.
- Do I have to go?
-It's remote, you will be safe.
What about you? You said
Osaka was dangerous..
Our factory is there, I have no choice.
Go, I will express your
gratitude to Nobu-san.
A year without news, except news of
death. Defeat. Shame. Rumours of cities…… evaporating into clouds of smoke.
Then another year, and then another.Until the old life is a dream-life.Was I ever a Geisha?Did I ever dance, holding a fan? Who would
hold a fan now... or paint their lips?And then another
year. Nothing. Rice… work.Rice… work. Nothing.
Sayuri, a man from
Osaka has come to see you.
General Tottori was captured
and tried as a war criminal..
-The Baron lost his fortune and committed suicide.
-What about the okea?
-Mr. Bekku has gone, but the others...
-Auntie and mother?
Indestructible as always.
-And the chairman?
-As well as can be expected.
This is all that
remains of our factories.
I'm so sorry Nobu-san.
We want to rebuild, but to do
that we will need your help.
What can I do?
Somewhere, under those rags, are you
still the greatest Geisha in Myoko?
If a tree has no leaves or branches,
can you still call that a tree?
With nothing but rubble at my feet,
can I still call myself a businessman?
I should have taken better care
of you. Please, you saved my life.
I owe you so much in return.
The chairman and I
need American financing.
There is a man, a certain Colonel Derricks
who has the power to grant us a contract.
I showed him your
picture. He asked to meet you.
I am not a persuasive man Sayuri,
but if you, and a few Geisha,
would once again put on
your kimono and join us,
we can show the Americans how
hospitable our country can be.
How I wish Nobu-san. But
that was a long time ago.
I have no doubt Sayuri, that you could
still melt the heart of any man....
... no matter how resistant.
I am not accustomed to begging,
but please know that...
… if you consent, the Chairman
and I would be most grateful.
The Chairman needed me. But I was a
far cry from the Geisha I had once been.The secrets of our hidden world were
postcards now for girls back home.Any street-walker with a
painted face and silk kimono…… could call herself a Geisha..I looked for the one person
who might help. Mameha.The war was written on her face. Everything about
her, not just her home, was less than before.
Sayuri, when my poor Baron filled his
pockets with stones, I was desperate.
What could I do? I sold my kimono.
I traded my jade cones for rations.
It was painful at first,
but I have made my peace.
Now, I make a small but
tidy living renting rooms.
-I am not about to go chasing the past.
-It might do you good.
To remind you that once with a single glance, you
could bring a man like the Baron, to his knees.
Well, I did keep one kimono.
The Baron gave it to me
when he became my patron.
Thank you big-sister.
So tell me. What do we know
about entertaining Americans?
Chiyo-chan, is that you?
I have no right to ask favours
of you Pumpkin, I know that .
Guess what? I only
smoke Chesterfield's now.
I've wanted to apologise to you
for so long,about the okea.
These soldier boys, you know
who they've got me singing?
-It should have gone to you, not me.
-If it is in your heart to forgive me...
The honest truth? I'd rather chew
sand than go back to all that.
Then you are not angry with me?
Don't worry about me chica-dee.. I've
got more clients than I can handle.
You see so at-home
with these Americans.
So, who's this colonel?
Sounds like top-brass.
He has the power to approve American
funding for Nobu and the Chairman.
So, is he willing to pay
us American dollars? Cash?
Don't waste my time. You
think I'm a sucker?
I want sixty cases of Lucky Strike or
I'm taking my business to Sgt. McFee.
I had to become a Geisha once more.Mother had reopened the okea,
but my powder-box was empty.My charcoal had turned to dust.And yet, it was my one chance
to see the Chairman again.Would he notice my weathered
hands? The threadbare silk?
See...? You are yourself again.
The world had changed
completely. Had he?And would I finally find the
strength to tell him all that I felt?
Just look at you Sayuri, it's
as if the war did not happen.
I'm so glad to see that
the Chairman's safe.
-Please accept my apologies asking this of you.
There's nothing I can't
do to return your kindness.
I've wanted to tell you that... Sayuri!
May I present Colonel
My god, you're more stunning in person.
This is my associate Lt. Hutchins.
Sayuri is one of the mysteries
of the orient I told you about.
-A mystery that perhaps you can solve.
-Would you mind? Can we?
Yes, of course. Colonel?
Hey, who likes whisky?
Chairman, don't tell me you've
started the party without me.
May I present Pumpkin?
You haven't change!You
look like a little boy!
Good for him,not too good for us!
-May we join you gentlemen?
-Yes please,I could get used to this!
Back home a bath is nothin' more than a
shower and a cold towel with a lotta soap. Right?
-But here you make everything a ritual don't you?
-That is the art of turning habit into pleasure Colonel.
Spoken like a true Geisha.
- If we are in business together, then perhaps we will visit you some day.
-I would like to see the United States.
-I know a little game we can play.
-It's called truth and lies.
-I know this game.
Back home we call it marriage.
No,I'm serious.Now listen closely,
Sayuri knows the rules.
And every married woman who didn't!
Each person says two things.
One is true, the other is not.
If you guess right,
the liar pays the price.
So it pays to lose? There you go.
Ok I go first.Let's see.
One day in Sapporo, where I was born,
a fisherman caught a Token-fish...
The other story is the true
one, and I haven't even heard it yet.
-Now you drink.
-If I drown, it's all your fault.
Please, I am no match for these
Geisha, they are expert in the art of deceit.
I'm an expert in one thing,
and one thing only, Sake.
Sayuri, the truest story you know.
Once, when I was a little girl,
on the banks of the Sunagawa,
a handsome stranger was kind enough
to buy me a cup of sweet ice...
I think we have to stop the game…
… if Pumpkin drinks any
more Sake, she will pass out.
Ooh,that is the true story...
So, what is the protocol?
- Excuse me?
-Suppose I wanted to see you in private...
I beg your pardon Colonel, that
is not a Geisha's custom.
If it's a question of price?
If there were a price,
you could never afford it.
I saw the two of you whispering. You have
arranged some kind of twist, haven't you?
What did you promise him?
Your company, nothing more. He
seemed to expect a great deal.
If I wanted a common whore,
I could have hired one.
-What are you trying to say?.
-Just the idea of you, with him,with any man,
you would be dead to me.
Can't you see that I
want you for myself?
You have ruined me. Before we
met I was a disciplined man.
I should have listened to him.
I must beg your forgiveness Nobu-san.
I was foolish to think
you would barter me away.
Please, don't insult me again.
If he ratifies our contract, then
I will be a man of means again.
There is nothing I want more
Sayuri, than to become your patron.
-I already owe you far too much.
-I will not be refused.
- We are tied to each other. I know you feel it too.
I never meant to mislead you.
I do not like things held out
before me, that I cannot have.
When you first introduced me to Nobu, I
was such a fool to give him my attention.
-You cannot refuse him, you must not.
-What is he to think? He safeguarded your life!
-So he owns it?!
Sayuri, I know what it is like to
try to scrape by without a patron.
I would do something,anything else.
Leting rooms,scrounging for every
meal? Is this the life that you want?
-I want a life that is mine!
- Nobu has never treated you with another other than kindness.
-I don't want mere kindness.
-What? What more can we expect?
You had feelings for
the Baron didn't you?
-I never allowed myself that.
-Don't lie to me.
-In time, you learn.
-I don't want to learn!
We don't become Geisha to
pursue our own destinies.
We become Geisha because
we have no choice.
-What is it, what's wrong?
-Nothing. I have a favour to ask, that's all.
At nine o'clock, bring Nobu to the
pool, on the far side of the garden.
Not a minute before,
not a minute after. Yes?
And please, do not tell Nobu
that I will be there waiting.
-It's a surprise?
-Yes. It's a surprise.
-Are we doing this or not?
How could you? You don't
know what you have done.
-But I do.
-I do not understand.
-Why did you have to bring the Chairman?
-Because I know how you feel about him.
A long time ago, you took something from
me. The only thing I ever truly wanted.
Well... now you know how it feels.
The heart dies, a slow death,
shedding each hope like leaves...... until one day there are
none. No hopes. Nothing remains.She paints her face to hide her
face. Her eyes like deep water.It is not for Geisha to
want. It is not for Geisha to feel.Geisha is an artist
of the floating world.She dances. She sings. She entertains you,whatever
you want. The rest is shadows. The rest is secret.
Sayuri, quick quick, the tea-house just called.
You are to meet a very important client tonight.
-It must be Nobu.
He's going to be one of
the richest men in Osaka.
He'll want to honour his
promise, to become your patron at last.
It's about time, finally.
A return on my investment.
-Giko, maybe one day, you'll be as lucky.
-No Geisha can ever hope for more.
Chairman! Where is Nobu-san?
-He won't be coming.
-Is something wrong?
He knows what happened. It is
not in his nature to forgive.
Chairman, what happened on the island...
Please, you do not have to
explain. But I have shamed myself so deeply…
… past all forgiveness. No, I
am the one who must be forgiven.
-I do not understand.
-Perhaps if you had only known the truth.
Some years ago, I was on my way to the theatre,
I saw a little girl weeping by the Sunagawa,
-I stopped to buy her a cup of sweet ice.
-You knew I was that little girl?
Didn't you ever wonder why
Mameha took you under her wing?
Mameha came to me because of you.
I wish you could have told me long ago.
What could I do? I owe Nobu my life. .
And so, when I saw he had a chance
at happiness with you, I stood silent.
But I cannot any longer. I
hope... it is not too late.
Don't be afraid to look at me
Can't you see? Every step I have
taken, since I was that child on the bridge,
has been to bring myself closer to you.
You cannot say to the sun “more
sun,” or to the rain “less rain.”To a man Geisha can only be half a wife.We are the wives of
nightfall. And yet to learn of kindness…… after so much unkindness. To understand that
a little girl with more courage than she knew,would find that her prayers were
answered. Can that not be called happiness?After all, these are not the memoirs
of an empress, nor of a queen…… these are memoirs of another kind.