Raisin In The Sun Script - The Dialogue

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Wake up.

Come on now, honey. Get up!

Come on.

It's 7:30.

I said, hurry up, Travis.

You're not the only person in the world got to use a bathroom.

Walter Lee, it's after 7:30.

Let me see you do some waking up in there now.

You just go ahead and lay there.

Next, Travis'll be finished and Mr. Johnson'll be in.

And you'll be fussing and cussing like a madman and be late.

Walter Lee Younger...

...it is time for you to get up!

Ain't he out yet?

Out? He ain't hardly got in there good yet.

What you doing all that yelling for if I can't get in there?

That check coming today?

They said Saturday. This is just Friday.

I hope you ain't getting up...

...talking about money. I don't want to hear it.

What's with you this morning?

I'm just sleepy.

What kind of eggs you want?

Not scrambled.

You're just a little old happy woman this morning, ain't you?

What's he doing in that bathroom? He has to start getting up earlier.

He won't be getting up one second earlier.

I can't afford to be late for work because of him.

Ain't his fault he can't get to bed earlier.

He's got a bunch of clowns sitting up...

...running their mouths in what's supposed to be his bedroom.

That's what you're mad about.

Things I want to talk to my friends about just couldn't be important.

Such friends as you got.

You look young this morning, baby.

Just for a second, stirring them eggs, you look real young again.

It's gone now.

You look like yourself again.

If you don't shut up and leave me alone...

The first thing a man should learn...

...is not to make love to no woman early in the morning.

You all are some evil creatures 8:00 in the morning.

Daddy, come on!

Grandma's staying home from work from now on?

That's right, baby.

Hey, insurance check comes tomorrow?

Get your mind off money and eat your breakfast.

This is the morning I'm supposed to bring 50 cents to school.

I ain't got no 50 cents this morning.

Teacher said we have to.

I don't care. I ain't got it.

- Aw, Mama! - Hush!

Just eat.

Could I maybe go carry groceries at the supermarket...

...after school then?

If you're through eating, make up your bed.

- I'm gone! - Got your milk money?

Yes, ma'am.

I wouldn't kiss that woman goodbye this morning.

Not for nothing in this world.

Not for nothing in this world.

Whose little angry man are you?

Oh, golly, Mama!

Better get out of here before you be late.

Could I please go carry groceries?

Honey, you should play evenings.

What's he want to do?

Carry groceries after school at the supermarket.

Let him go. It's good for him to be business-minded.

I have to. She won't give me the 50 cents.

Why not?

Because we don't have it.

What do you tell the boy things like that for?

Here you are, son.

In fact...

...here's another 50 cents. Get some fruit or take a cab to school.

Hot dog!

I think you better get down and go to school.



That's my boy.

Know what I was thinking this morning?

I know what you was thinking, and I won't hear it again.

I know what you was thinking, and I won't hear it again.

About what me and Willie Harris talked about.

Willie Harris is a good-for-nothing loudmouth.

Anybody who'd talk to me has to be a good-for-nothing loudmouth.

Charlie Atkins was one too. Wanted me to go into business with him.

Now his dry cleaners grosses $100,000 a year. $100,000 a year.

Still a loudmouth good-for-nothing.

Oh, Walter Lee!

You're tired, ain't you, baby? You oh so tired of everything.

Me, the boy, the way we live in this beat-up hole. Everything.

Moaning and groaning.

But you wouldn't help. You couldn't be on my side, could you?

Please, leave me alone.

A man needs a woman to back him. Mama would listen to you...

...more than me and Bennie.

All you do is sit down with her one morning...

...when you're having coffee and talking like you do.

Just say that you've been thinking about this deal...

...Walter Lee's so interested in about the store.

Sip at your coffee like it ain't important to you.

Soon, she's listening good and asking questions.

I come home. I fill in the details.

Please, leave me alone.

This ain't no fly-by-night operation.

We got this figured out. Me, Willie and Bobo.


We figure the initial investment on the place to be about $30,000.

That's $10,000 apiece. Of course...

...we got to spread around a few hundred to get our license approved.

You mean graft.

Don't call it that.

Goes to show you how much women know about the world.

Baby, don't nothing happen for you unless somebody gets paid off.

Leave me alone!

Eat your eggs. They'll be cold.


Man say to his woman, "I got a dream."

She says, "Eat your eggs. They getting cold."

Man say, "Help me to take a hold in this world."

She says, "Eat your eggs. Go to work."

I got to change my life because I'm choking to death...

...and all you say to me is, "Eat these eggs."

That ain't our money, and I ain't going to harass your mama about it.

I looked in the mirror and thought, I'm 35 years old.

I'm married 11 years.

And I got a boy who sleeps in the living room because I got nothing.

Nothing to give him but stories!

Like on how rich white people live.

- Eat your eggs. - Damn these eggs!

Damn all the eggs that ever was!

Then go to work!

I'm trying to talk to you.

About me.

Now all you going to say to me is, "Eat these eggs"?

You never say anything new. I listen to you every day.

Every morning, every night. You never say nothing new.

So you'd rather be Mr. Arnold than be his chauffeur. So?

I'd rather be living in Buckingham Palace.

That's what's wrong with the colored woman.

You don't build your men up.

Make them feel they're somebody and can do something.

- There are colored men who do things. - No thanks to the colored woman.

Being a colored woman, I guess I can't help myself none.

- I got to start timing those people. - You should get up earlier.

Really? When would you suggest, dawn?

You're horrible-Iooking this time of morning.

Good morning, Brother.

- How's your school coming? - Oh, lovely, lovely.

Biology's the greatest.

I dissected something looked like you yesterday.

I was just...

...wondering if you made up your mind.

What did I answer yesterday?

- And the day before? - Don't be so nasty.

And the days before that?

I'm interested. Is that wrong?

It ain't every day no girl decides to be a doctor!

Come on out of there, please!

- That check is coming. - That money belongs to Mama.

It's for her to decide how she'll use it.

I don't care if she buys a house or a rocket.

Or just nail it up and look at it.

It's hers.

Not ours. Hers.

You are such a nice girl.

You've got your mother's interest at heart, ain't you?

Mama got that money, she can always help you through school.

I never asked anyone to do anything for me.

The line between asking and just accepting is wide.

You want me to quit school?

I want you to stop acting holy around here!

We've made sacrifices. It's time you do something for this family.

- Don't drag me in it. - You are in it.

You work in somebody's kitchen to put clothes on her back.

That's not fair.

Damn it! Ain't nobody asking her to say...

..."Thank you, Ruth, Brother and Mama.

And Travis, for wearing the same shoes for two semesters."

I do, all right? Thank everybody.

And forgive me for wanting to be anything.

Forgive me, forgive me, forgive me!

Your mama'll hear you.

Who in the hell told you you had to be a doctor?

You're so interested in sick people, go be a nurse, like other women.

Or get married and shut up.

So you finally got it said.

Took you three years, but you finally got it said.

Give up and leave me alone. It's Mama's money.

He was my father too.

So? He was mine too. And Travis' grandfather.

But the insurance money belongs to Mama.

Picking on me won't make her give it to you to invest in liquor stores.

God bless Mama for that.

- You always say that. - Honey, please.

Go to work.

Nobody in this house is ever going to understand me.

Because you're a nut.

Who's a nut?

You. You're a nut. Thee is mad, boy.

The world's most backward nation of women. And that is a fact.

Then there's those prophets who would...

...lead us out of the wilderness into the swamps!

Who in the world is slamming doors at this hour?

That was Walter Lee.

He and Bennie was at it again.

My children and their tempers.

Lord, if this little plant don't start...

...getting more sun, it ain't never going to see spring again.

What's the matter with you? You look peaked.

It's too drafty to be half-dressed.

- Where's your robe? - The cleaners.

Go get mine and put it on.

I'm not cold. Honest.

- I know, but you're so thin. - I'm not cold.

Lord have mercy! Look at that poor bed.

Bless his heart, he sure tries, don't he?

He don't half try at all because he knows you'll fix everything.

A little boy ain't supposed to know nothing about housekeeping.

My baby, that's what he is.

Now that you'll be home all the time, that boy'll really be spoiled.

My first day home.

I'm going to sit this body down and let it rest.

Just let it rest from here on in.


...thank my husband's sweet memory for making it all possible.

You know, Big Walter always hated the idea of being a servant.

Always says, man's hands wasn't meant to carry nobody's slop jars...

...or make their beds.

Always used to say they was...

...meant to turn the earth with or make things.

That husband of yours?

He's just like him.

Just like him.


... bring the car around front, please.

- Hi. - Hi there, Ruth.

No, no, child. I can manage.

What's the matter with you?

A little tired, I guess.

I've been ironing since this morning.

Leave some for me. I'll get to them tonight.

You think that's why we want you home?

So you can do everybody else's work now?

A little ironing ain't never hurt nobody.

The way you look, you need to be sitting down immediately.

You know something?

I bet you got a touch of that virus been going around.

If you don't look better tomorrow, stay home from work.

I can't stay home. She's doing her Saturday night entertaining.

She'd have a fit if I don't show up.

Let her have it. I'll just call up and say you got the flu.

- Why the flu? - Because it sounds respectable.

Something white folks get too. They know about the flu.

Otherwise, they'll think you been cut up or something.

- Where's my baby? - In there doing his homework.

Tomorrow is Saturday.

- The child don't need... - Every Sunday...

...he's too tired, or he forgot what the teacher told him.

Awful hot to be cooped up with books.

- Lena. - I ain't meddling.

I just noticed his eyes been looking sort of strained lately.

A child ought to have plenty of rest and plenty of sunshine.

I take care of my son.

I ain't meddling.

- When will you let him out? - In 15 minutes.

Is that all right?

Darling, I ain't meddling.

Why don't you make it 10?

He sure loves to play that baseball.

Wonder why Miss Beneatha is so late?

It's getting close to 5.

I don't believe this plant's had more than a speck of sunlight...

...all day.

I'm tired.

I had to go way out to that market again to get decent groceries.

Ain't you never going to learn to do your shopping in the supermarket?

What you think they built them for? Going way out there.

I can't stand them buggies rolling around.

And belts moving.

And the meat all wrapped up like it was candy.

Them places frighten me.

You look like you could fall over right there.

I don't see you going out to do nobody's work tomorrow.

I got to go. We need the money.

Child, we got a big old check coming tomorrow.

Now, that's your money.

It ain't got nothing to do with me.

We all feel like that. Walter, Bennie, me...

...even Travis.

Ten thousand dollars.

Sure is wonderful.

Ten thousand dollars.

You know what you should do, Miss Lena?

You should take a trip somewhere.

To Europe or South America someplace.

Just pack up and leave.

Go on away. Enjoy yourself some.

Forget about the family.

Have yourself a ball for once in your life.

What would I look like wandering all over Europe by myself?

Shoot! These here rich white women do it all the time.

They pack their suitcases...

...and pile on a steamship, and swoosh! They gone, child.

Something always told me I wasn't no rich white woman.

What are you going to do with it then?

Well, I...

...ain't rightly decided.

Some of it's got to be put away for Beneatha's medical schooling.

And ain't nothing going to touch that part of it. Not nothing.

Then I...

...been thinking, just thinking, mind you...

...that we could meet the notes on a two-story somewhere.

With a back yard where Travis could play.

If we used part of the money for a down payment...

...and everybody pitch in...

...I could take on a little work again a few days a week.

Lord knows we put enough rent into this rattrap...

...to pay for four houses by now.


Well, I...

...expect that's about all it is.

But I remember the first day me and Big Walter moved in here.

We hadn't been married but two weeks.

And we wasn't planning on living here more than a year.

We was going to set away a little by little...

...and buy us a little old two-story out in Morgan Park.

We'd even picked out the house.

Looks right dumpy today.

But, child, you should have known all them dreams I had...

...about buying me that house and then fixing it up.

And make me a little garden out in back.

But none of it happened.

Big Walter used to come in some nights.

And he'd slump down there on that big couch.

And he'd look at that rug and he'd look at me.

He'd look at that rug and he'd look back up at me.

And I knew he was down then. Really down.

When we lost that baby...

...I thought we was going to lose Big Walter too.

That man grieved himself so.

Honey, he was one man to love his children.

Ain't nothing can tear at you like losing your baby.

I think that's why that man finally worked himself to death.

Like he was fighting his own war...

...with this world that took his baby from him.

Crazy about his children.

God knows there was plenty wrong with Walter Younger.



Kind of wild with women. Plenty wrong with him.

But he sure loved his children.

Always wanting them to have something...

...and to be something.

I guess that's where Brother gets all them notions from.

Big Walter used to say sometimes, and he'd get right wet in the eyes...

...and lean his head back with water in his eyes...

...and he'd say:

"Seem like God didn't see fit to give the black man nothing but dreams.

But he did give us children to make them dreams seem worthwhile."

He could talk like that, don't you know?

He sure could.

He was a good man, Mr. Younger.

Hello, everybody.

Did you decide to come home?

I thought your last Friday's class was at 3:30.

It is, but I started my guitar lessons today.

Your what kind of lessons?


Oh, Father!

How come you done took it in your head to learn to play the guitar?

I just want to, that's all.

Lord have mercy, child! Don't you know what to do with yourself?

How long will it be before you get tired of this...

...like you got tired of that acting group last year?

And what was it before that?

The horseback-riding club.

For which she bought that $55 riding outfit.

It's been in the closet ever since.

Why you got to flit so from one thing to another?

You never done nothing with that camera equipment.

I don't flit. I experiment with different forms of expression.

Like riding a horse?

People have to express themselves in one way or another.

What is it that you want to express?


Don't worry. I don't expect you to understand, for God's sakes!

Just listen to her!

Oh, God!

If you use the Lord's name just one more time...

Just fresh as salt, this girl!

- Where you going? - I got a date.

George Murchison again.

Getting a little sweet on him.

This child ain't sweet on nobody but herself.

Express herself?

I like George all right.

Enough to go out with and stuff.

- What does "and stuff' mean? - Mind your own business.

Now stop picking on her now.

What does it mean?

I just mean that I could never really be serious about George.

He's too shallow.

Shallow? What do you mean?

- He's rich. - I know he's rich.

He knows he's rich too.

Besides, his mother wouldn't want me to marry him.

Any more than I'd ever want to.

You mustn't dislike folks because they're well-off.

Don't worry, she'll get over this. That's her youth talking.

What are you talking about, "Get over it"?


I'm going to be a doctor.

I'm not even worried about who I'm going to marry yet.

If I ever get married.

- Lf? - Lf?

I probably will.

But first I'm going to be a doctor.

Now George, for one, thinks that's pretty funny.

I couldn't be bothered with that.

I'm going to be a doctor.

And everybody here better understand that.

Of course, you'll be a doctor, God willing.

God hasn't got a thing to do with it.

- That just wasn't necessary. - Neither is God.

I get sick of hearing about God all the time.

I mean it.

I'm just tired of hearing about God all the time.

What has He got to do with anything?

Does He pay tuition?

You about to get your fresh little jaw slapped.

That's what she needs.

Why can't I say what I want to say...

...like everybody else?

Because it's not nice to talk like that.

You wasn't raised that way.

Me and your daddy got you and Brother to church every Sunday.

You don't understand. It's all a matter of ideas.

And God is just one idea that I don't accept.

Now it's not important. I'm not going to be immoral...

...or commit crimes because I don't believe.

I don't even think about that.

I just get so tired of Him getting the credit...

...for things the human race achieves through its own effort.

Now, there simply is no God.

There's only man. And it's he who makes miracles.

Now you say after me:

In my mother's house, there is still God.

In my mother's house, there is still God.

In my mother's house, there's still God.

There's just some things we won't have around here.

Not long as I'm still head of this family.

Yes, ma'am.

I think she was sorry.

It frightens me, my children.

You got good children.

They just a little off sometimes.

There's something done come down between them and me...

...that don't let us understand each other.

One's almost lost his mind talking about money all the time.

And the other talks about things I can't seem to understand.

- What's changing them? - You're taking it too serious.

You got strong-willed children...

...and it takes a strong woman like you to keep them in hand.

They're spirited all right, my children.

Got to admit they got spirit, Bennie and Walter.

Kind of like this plant here that ain't never had enough sunlight.

And look at it.

Lena, I...

What will you do about helping him?

You mean Walter's liquor store?

I'm worried for him.

But liquor, honey...

Like Walter Lee say...

...I expect people will always be drinking some liquor.

That don't mean I got to be the one to sell it.

It's getting close to the time for me to meet my Maker.

And I don't want that on my ledger.

And we ain't business people, just plain working folks.

Ain't nobody business people till they go into business.

Walter Lee say...

...colored people ain't going to get ahead...

...till they take chances on different things in this world.

Investments and things.

What's done got into you, girl?

Walter Lee done sold you on investing?

Something's happening between me and Walter.

I don't know what it is, but he needs something.

Something I can't give him anymore.

He needs this chance.

That don't make no difference.

I ain't going to be putting the memory of my husband into no liquor.

There's nothing as dreary as the view from this window...

...on a dreary evening, is there?

How come you ain't singing this evening?

Sing that song, "No Ways Tired."

That song always kind of lifts me up so.

Because here's one thing you can believe:

People going to be drinking themselves some booze...

...when they can't even make the rent.

Man, that's a fact. That's strictly a fact.

That's why I say now's the time to move.

If we're moving together, we got to move now.

Bobo has his part of the money.

And it wasn't easy. But man, I'm straight.

I'm real straight.

And I got mine.

We got a date to see the guy in Springfield about the license Friday.

If you get up off your glute, we got this thing made.

Everything's going to be cool.

All I need is another day to swing the situation at home.

You know how it is. I got three women at the barricades.

If there's anybody you can't persuade...

...to take a larger view of life, it's a woman.

That's why I say it's time to break out.

What do you say?

It's a deal.

Where did Ruth go?

To the doctor, I think.

The doctor? What for?

- You don't think she's... - I ain't saying.

But I ain't never been wrong about a woman neither.

Howdy-do to you too.

I'm sorry. Housecleaning and all that.

Mama hates me having guests when the house looks like this.

That's right.

You have?

That's different.

What the heck. You just come right over.

Right. I'll see you in a little while.

Who you inviting here with this house looking like this?

You ain't got no pride!

Asagai doesn't care how houses look. He's an intellectual.

- Who? - Asagai.

Joseph Asagai. He's an African boy I met on campus.

What's his name?


Joseph Ah-sa-guy.

He's from Nigeria.

That's that little country that was founded by slaves way back...

That's Liberia.

I don't think I never seen no African before.

Then you just do me a favor.

Don't ask him ignorant questions about Africans.

"Do they wear clothes?" and all that stuff.

Well, now.

If you think we're so ignorant...

...maybe you shouldn't bring your friends here.

It's just that people ask such crazy things.

All anyone seems to know about Africa is Tarzan.

Why should I know anything about Africa?

Why do you give money for missionary work?

That's to help save folks.

- Save them from heathenism. - That's right.

They need more salvation from the foreigners on their lands.

I guess from your faces, everybody knows.

You pregnant!

Lord, I hope it's a girl! Travis ought to have a sister.

How far along are you?

Two months.

Did you mean to?

I mean, did you plan this or was it an accident?

What do you know about planning and not planning?

- She's 20 years old. - I mean it. Did you plan it?

Mind your own business!

It is my business! Where's he going to sleep, on the roof?

I didn't mean that.

I don't feel like that at all.

I think it's wonderful.

- Wonderful. - Really, I do.

Did the doctor say everything'll be all right?

She said everything will be fine.



What doctor you went to?

Don't you feel well?

- Baby! - What's the matter with her?

Come on now. She'll be all right.

Women gets depressed when they get her way.

Just relax now. That's it, baby. Don't think about nothing now.

- Come on. - Oh, my God! That must be Asagai!

You lie down and rest awhile.

Then we'll have some nice hot food. Come on, baby.

Hello, Alaiyo.


Come on in.

And please excuse everything.

My mother was upset at my having anyone come here...

...with the house looking like this.

You seem disturbed too.

Is there something wrong?

We've all got acute ghetto-itis.

I see.

So sit down.

What'd you bring me?

Open it and see.

You got it for me!

It's beautiful!

And the records too!

Of course.

Thank you very much.

I'll put it on.

I shall have to teach you how to drape it properly.

You take it like so.

Like so. And you drape it around here.


Now turn.

That's enough.

Tuck it here.

You wear it well, very well.

You really think so?

Do you remember when I met you at school?

You came up to me and you said...

You were the most serious thing I'd seen.

You said, "Mr. Asagai...

...I should like very much to talk with you about Africa.

You see, Mr. Asagai, I am looking for my identity!"

It's true this isn't so much the profile of a Hollywood Queen...

...as, say, the Queen of the Nile.

What does it matter?

Assimilationism is so popular in your country.

I am not an assimilationist!

Such a serious one.

So you like the robes? You must take excellent care of them.

They're from my sister's personal wardrobe.

You sent all the way home for me.

For you...

...I'd do much more.

That's what I came for. I must go.

Will you call me Monday?

Of course. We have a great deal to talk about, you and I.

I mean, about identity and all that.

And time.


How much time one needs to know what one feels.

You see?

You never understood. More than one feeling...

...can exist between a man and a woman. At least there should be.

Between a man and woman, there need be only one kind of feeling.

And I have that for you.

- Now even, right this moment. - I know, and it won't do.

- I can find that anyplace. - It should be enough.

Because that's what it says in all the novels that men write.

But it isn't.

Go ahead and laugh, but I'm not interested in being...

...someone's little episode in America.

Or one of them.

It's real funny, huh?

It's just that every American woman I have ever met...

...has always said that to me.

In this, you are all the same.

- And the same speech too. - Yuk, yuk, yuk.

It's how you can tell that the world's most liberated woman...

...isn't liberated at all. You all talk about it too much.

It's my mother.

This is Mr. Asagai.

- How do you do? - How do you do?

Please forgive me for coming at such an outrageous hour on a Saturday.

That's quite all right.

I hope you understand our house don't always look like this.

- Of course. - You must come again.

I'd love to hear all about your country.

I think it's so sad the way our American Negroes...

...don't know nothing about Africa except Tarzan.

And all that money they pour into churches...

...when they ought to help you drive out...

...them foreigners that took your land.

Why, yes, of course.

How many miles is it from here to where you come from?

Many thousands.

Bet you don't take care of yourself...

...being away from your mama so far.

You'd better come here from time to time...

...and get yourself some home-cooked meals.

Thank you.

Thank you very much.

I really must be going.

I'll call you Monday, Alaiyo.

What's that he called you?

Alaiyo. I hope you don't mind.

It's what you would call a nickname, I think.

It's a Yoruba word.

I'm Yoruba.

I thought he come from...

Nigeria is my country.

Yoruba is my tribal origin.

You never did tell us what Alaiyo means.

You might be calling me "Little Idiot."

Let me see. I don't know if I can explain it.

A thing's sense is sometimes different when it changes languages.

You're evading.

Really, it's quite difficult. It means...

It means "One for whom bread...


...is not enough."

Is that all right?

Thank you.

That's nice. You must come again, Mr... .



Well, do come again.

Call me.

That sure was a pretty thing that just walked out of here.

I see how come we so interested in Africa all of a sudden.


You cracking up?

You shut up!

She's resting now.

Mailman must be late, Grandma.

I'm tired of waiting.

It'll be all right, honey.

He'll ring that bell soon, like he's done...

...every day for the last umpteen years.

Where're you going?

To become a Queen of the Nile.

Who said to get up?

Ain't nothing wrong with me to be laying in no bed for.

- Where'd Bennie go? - Far as I could make out, to Egypt.

Get down them steps, boy!

You reckon it's done come already?

No point in us getting excited. We knowed it was coming for months.

But that's different from having it come...

...and being able to hold it.

A piece of paper worth $10,000.

Come on, open it.

Lord, I wish Walter Lee was here.

- Open it! - Don't be getting excited.

- It's only a check. - Open it.

Don't be acting silly now.

We never been a people to act silly about money.

We ain't never had none before.

Open it.

Is them the right amount of zeros?

Ten thousand dollars.

Golly, Grandma. You rich!

Ten thousand dollars.

Put it away.

Ten thousand dollars, they give you.

Ten thousand dollars.

What's the matter with Grandma? Don't she want to be rich?

Go on downstairs and play now, baby.

You done gone and got yourself upset.

You know...

...if it wasn't for you all, I'd put that money away...

...or give it to the church.

Now, what kind of talk is that?

Mr. Younger'd be just plain mad if he could hear you talk like that.

He would, wouldn't he?

We got plenty to do with that money.

Where'd you go today, girl?

To the doctor.

Now, you know better than that.

Old Dr. Jones is peculiar in his way.

But nothing to make nobody slip and call him "she," like you done.

That's just what happened. My tongue slipped.

You went to that woman, didn't you?

What woman?

That woman that takes money from women for doing things she ain't ot...

Did it come?

What are you doing home at this hour?

And can't you greet people before you ask about money?

Did it come?

I made Willie Harris put everything on paper.

The lawyer looked it over.

I think you ought to talk with your wife.

I'll go out and leave you alone if you want.

I can talk to her anytime. Will somebody listen to me today?

I don't allow yelling in this house, and you know it.

And there'll be no investing in liquor stores!

And I don't aim to speak on it again!

But you haven't even looked at it.

You haven't even looked at it.

You haven't even looked at it, and you won't speak on it again?

You tell that to my boy tonight...

...when you put him to sleep on the living room couch.

Tell him when his mother goes to care for somebody else's kids.

And tell it to me when we want curtains or drapes...

...and you sneak out to work in somebody's kitchen.

I want a future for this family.

All I want is to be able to stand in front of my boy...

...like my father never was able to do to me...

...and tell him he'll be somebody in this world...

...besides a servant...

...and a chauffeur.

You tell me then. Hear?

- Where're you going? - Out!

- Where? - Out of this house.

- I'll come too. - Don't.

- I've got something to tell you. - That's too bad.

Sit down!

- I'm a grown man. - Ain't nobody said you wasn't grown.

But you're in my house and my presence.

And you'll talk to your wife civil.

- Now sit down! - Let him go.

He can drink himself to death. You make my stomach sick.

You turn mine too, baby!

That was my biggest mistake.

What's the matter with you?

There's nothing the matter with me.

There's something eating you up like a crazy man.

More than me not giving you money.

The past years I've watched it happen.

You get all nervous acting and wild in the eyes.

I said sit!

I don't need your nagging at me today! How's that?

Seems like you always tied up in some kind of knot or something.

But if anybody asks about it, you yell and bust out and go get drunk.

People cannot live with that.

Ruth is a nice, patient girl.

But you are too much. Don't make the mistake of driving her away.

What does she do for me?

She loves you!

I got to go out. Now I got to go out and be by myself!

I'm sorry about your liquor store. But it's not the thing for us to do.

That's what I wanted to say.

- It's dangerous. - What's dangerous?

When a man goes outside his house for peace.

Then how come there can never be no peace in this house?

You found it in some other house?

Why do you always think there's a woman?

I want so many things.

I want so many things that sometimes I think they'll drive me crazy.

I'm 35 years old, and I ain't got nothing.

I ain't going to be nothing. Just look at me.

- Look at me. - I'm looking at you.

You're a good-Iooking boy.

- You got a job, a wife, a son... - A job!

I open and close car doors all day.

I drive a man in his limousine, and I say...

..."Yes, sir" and "No, sir" and "Shall I take the drive, sir?"

That ain't no kind of job. That ain't nothing at all.

- I don't know if you can understand. - Understand what?

It's like I can see my future just stretched out in front of me.

My whole future. A big, blank, empty space full of nothing...

...just hanging at the edge of my days, waiting for me.

But it don't have to be.

Sometimes, when I'm downtown driving that man around...

...we pass them cool, quiet-Iooking restaurants.

I look in.

I see these white boys. They're sitting, talking...

...about deals worth millions of dollars...

...and they look no older than me.

How come you talk so much about money?

Because it's life!

So now money is life?

Once, freedom used to be life.

But now it's money.

It was always money. We just didn't know it.

Something's changed.

You're something new, boy.

In my time, we was worried about not being lynched...

...and getting North and staying alive and still have dignity too.

Now you and Beneatha talk about things we ain't never thought about.

You ain't satisfied or proud of nothing we done.

I mean, that you had a home...

...and that we kept you out of trouble...

...and that you don't have to ride on the back of nobody's streetcar.

You're my children, but how different we've become.

You don't understand.

You don't understand.

Son, don't you know your wife's expecting another baby?

That's what she wanted to talk to you about.

This ain't for me to be telling, but I thought you ought to know.

I think Ruth is thinking about getting rid of that child.

She wouldn't do that.

When the world gets ugly, a woman'll do anything for her family...

...the part that's already living. - You don't know her...

...if you think she'd do something like that.

Yes, I would too.

I gave her a $5 down payment.

I'm waiting to hear you say something.

I'm waiting to hear how you'd be like the man your father was.

Your wife said she's going to destroy your child.

I'm waiting to hear you talk like your father...

...and say we're a people who give children life, not who destroys them.

I'm waiting to see you stand up and look like your daddy...

...and say, we gave up one baby to poverty. We ain't giving up another.

I'm waiting!

If you be a son of mine, you'll tell her.

You're a disgrace to your father's memory.

Where did I put my hat?

What have we got on tonight?

You are now looking...

...at what a well-dressed Nigerian woman would wear.

Isn't that beautiful?

Enough of that assimilationist junk.

- What kind of dance is that? - It's a folk dance.

What kind of folks do that?

It's from Nigeria. It's a dance of welcome.

- Who you welcoming? - The men. Back to the village.

Where they been?

How do I know where they've been?

Out hunting or something.

Anyway, they coming back now.

That's good.

And Ethiopia stretched forth her arms again.

And Africa's sure claiming her own tonight.

Shut up.

I'm digging them drums.

The drums move me.

In my heart of hearts, I'm much warrior.

In your heart of hearts, you're much drunkard.

That's my man, you know? Kenyatta!

Hot damn!

Flaming Spear!

The lion waking now, honey.

Flaming Spear!


...my black brothers.

Do you hear the waters rushing against the shores of our coastlands?

Do you hear the screeching of the cocks in yonder hills...

...beyond where our chiefs meet in council...

...for the coming of the mighty war?

Do you hear the beating of the birds' wings...

...as they fly low over our mountains...

...and the low places of our land?

Do you hear the singing of the women...

...singing the sweet war song?

Oh, do you hear, my black brothers?

We hear you, Flaming Spear!

Telling us to prepare...

...for the greatness of their times.

- Black brother! - Black brother, hell!

You got company. What is with you?

Get down off that table.

And stop acting like a fool.

He's had a little to drink.

I don't know what her excuse is.

Honey, we're going to the theater.

We're not going to be in it, you know.

Oh, George, I don't like that.

Do you expect this boy to go out with you looking like that?

That's up to George, if he's ashamed of his heritage!

Oh, dear!

Oh, dear! Here we go again.

A lecture on our African past, on our great West African heritage.

In a second, we'll hear about the great Ashanti empires...

...the Songhai civilizations, the sculpture of Benin, poems in Bantu...

...and the whole monologue will end up with the word "heritage"!

Your heritage is nothing but a bunch of raggedy spirituals...

...and some grass huts!

Grass huts?

You see, George...

...you would rather stand there in your splendid ignorance...

...and know absolutely nothing about the people...

...who were the first to smelt iron on the face of this earth.

Why, the Ashantis were performing surgical operations...

...when the English were still tattooing themselves with blue dragons!

Have a seat, George.

Would you like an ice-cold beer?

No, thanks. I don't care for beer.

I hope she hurries up.

What time is the show?

It's an 8:30 curtain.

That's just Chicago. In New York, standard curtain time is always 8:40.

You get to New York a lot?

Sure. A few times a year.

That's nice. I've never been to New York.

New York.

New York ain't got nothing Chicago ain't...

...except a bunch of hustling people all squeezed together being Eastern.

So you've been?

- Plenty of times. - Walter Lee...


What you got in this house to drink? Offer the man some refreshments.

You're not entertaining enough.

No, thank you. I don't care for anything.

How come all you college boys wear them faggoty-Iooking white shoes?

Walter Lee!

Excuse him.

They look funny as hell. You know?

Bad as them black knee stockings Beneatha wears all the time.

It's the college style.

She look like she got burnt legs.

How's your old man making out?

I understand you all going to buy that big hotel down on the drive.

Shrewd move, boy.

Your old man knows how to operate. He thinks big. Know what I mean?

I mean for a home, you know.

But I kind of think he's running out of ideas now, see?

I sure would like to talk to him.

I got me some plans, man.

I got me some plans that'll turn this city upside down.

Know what I mean?

I think like your old man. Big.

You invest big, you gamble big, and, hell, you lose big...

...if you have to. You know what I mean?

Hard to find another man on the whole South Side who understands that.

If me and you get down and talk about things...

Sometime we'll have to do that.

When you get the time, man.

I know you are a busy little boy.

Walter, please.

I know ain't nothing in the world as busy as you colored college boys...

...with your fraternity pins and your white shoes.

I see you all the time with your books tucked under your arm...

...going to your classes.

What are you learning down there? What are they filling your head with?

Sociology? Psychology?

They teaching you how to be a man?

How to take over and run this world, boy?

How to run a rubber plantation or a steel mill or something?

Just how to read books and talk proper. And wear faggoty white shoes.

You know, man, you are all wacked up with bitterness.

How about you? Ain't you bitter?

Don't you see no stars you can't reach out and grab?

I'm talking to...

I'm a volcano. I'm a giant, and I'm surrounded by ants.

Ants who don't even know what I'm talking about. How's that?

Ain't you with nobody?

Ain't nobody with me.

Not even my own mother.

That's a terrible thing to say.

You look great!

See you later.

- Come along, George. - Have a nice time now.

Good night, Prometheus.

Who's Prometheus?

I don't know, honey. Don't worry about it.

They get to a point they can't even insult you man-to-man.

They got to talk about something nobody ever heard of.

How do you know it was an insult? Maybe Prometheus is a nice fellow.

I bet there's no such thing.

I bet that simple-minded clown just made it up out of his head.

- Don't you start. - Start what?

Your nagging.

"Where you been? Who you been with? How much money you spend?"

- Why can't you stop fighting me? - Who's fighting you?

Who even cares about you?

Guess I may as well go on to bed.

I don't know where we lost it, but we have.

I'm sorry about this new baby.

Guess I'd better do what I started.

Guess I just didn't realize how bad things was with us.

I guess I just didn't really realize.

Stairs are getting longer and longer. How you feeling this evening?

- Where were you this afternoon? - Where's Travis?

I let him go out earlier and he ain't come back yet.

Boy, is he going to get it!

- Where were you this afternoon? - Downtown to tend to some business.

What kind of business?

Don't question me like a child.

You didn't go out and do something crazy with that insurance money?

- Mama, l... - You going to get it, boy!

Get yourself ready.

Why don't you never let the child explain himself?

Keep out of it, Lena.

A thousand times I told you not to go off like that.

At least let me tell him something.

Come here, Travis. Come on to Grandma. Come on.

You know that money we got in the mail this morning?

What do you think your grandma went and done?

I don't know, Grandma.

She went and she bought you a house.

You glad about the house?

It's going to be yours when you get to be a man.

I always did want to live in a house.

Give me a little sugar then.

Now, when you say your prayers tonight...

...you thank God and your granddaddy...

...because he's the one who give it to you in his way.

You get out of here now, Travis. Get ready for your beating.

- Aw, Mama. - Get in there now.

So you went and did it.

I did.

Praise God!



Let me be glad.

You be glad.

A home!

Where is it?

How big... How much... When we moving?

The first of the month.

Praise God!

It's a nice house.

It's got three bedrooms. And there's a big one for you and Ruth.

Me and Beneatha still has to share ours...

...but Travis'll have a room of his own.

And I figures if the new baby is a boy...

...we could get one of them double-deck outfits. You know?

It's got a yard with a little patch of dirt in it.

I can maybe grow me a few flowers. And it's got a great big basement.

Honey, be glad.

I don't want to make it sound fancier than it is.

It's just a plain, little old house.

But it's built good and solid.

And it'll be ours.

It makes a difference to a man when he can walk...

...on floors that belong to him.

Where is it?

Clybourne Park.

- Where? - 4930 Clybourne Street, Clybourne Park.

Clybourne Park?

There ain't no colored people in Clybourne Park!

There's going to be some now.

Is that the peace and comfort you went and spent that money for today?

I tried to find the nicest place...

...for the least amount of money for my family.

I've never been afraid of no crackers much.

Wasn't there no other houses nowhere?

Them houses they build for colored way out in them areas...

...all seem to cost twice as much. I did the best I could!

All I can say...

...this is my time in life.

My time...

...to say goodbye to these...

...old, tired walls.

And these marching cockroaches.

And this cramped little closet, which ain't now and never was no kitchen.

And I say it loud and good!


Goodbye, misery.

Never want to see your ugly face.

Yes, honey?

There a whole lot of sunlight?

Yes, child.

There's a whole lot of sunlight.

Guess I better go see about Travis.

I sure don't feel like whipping nobody today!

You understand what I done today, don't you?

I seen my family falling apart today.

Falling to pieces in front of my eyes.

We couldn't go on like we was today.

We was going backwards instead of forwards.

Talking about killing babies and wishing each other was dead.

When it gets like that in life, you just got to do something different.

Push on and do something bigger.

Son, I wish you'd say something.

I wish you'd say how, deep inside you...

...you feel I done the right thing.

What you want me to say you done the right thing for?

You're the head of this family.

You run our lives the way you want.

It was your money to do with what you want.

What you want me to say you done the right thing for?

Because you butchered up a dream of mine?

You, Mama, who's always talking...

...about your children's dreams?

This is his wife.

He isn't here just now.

He had to go to the doctor's.

It was the only appointment he could get, Mrs. Arnold.

I know we should have called.

But we were so sure he could come to work.

I don't blame you.

What'd she say?

She said...

...they'll get somebody else if he don't come in tomorrow.

She said Mr. Arnold had to take a cab for three days.

What's happening to him?

Where's he been going every day?

Where you going?

I'm going to get my boy. What's the name of the place he goes to?

It won't do any good. There's no sense in you...

What's the name of it?

The Kitty Kat.

Want a drink, Mama?

Want a little drink?

Get down from there this instant.

- Does he owe you any money? - Just for the last one, 85 cents.

My change, please.

What have you been doing for the past three days...

...pretending you've been going to work every morning?

How long before I have to come and pick you up off the sidewalk?

You got hurt and pain in you?

I knew a man who lived with his pain and made his hurt work for him.

Your daddy died with dignity. There wasn't no bum in him.

And he'd known some hurts that you ain't never even heard of.

Why did you leave the South? I mean that.

Forty years ago, when you were young, why did you leave the South?

I expect for the same reason everybody else does.

I thought maybe if I could come up here I'd do better for myself.

I don't say I exactly turned over the world since...

But you didn't give nobody the right to stop you once you decided to go.

Even though you weren't going no place, you thought you were, didn't you?

Then why couldn't you let me get on my train when my time come?

I don't think it's ever going to come again.

I don't think it's ever going to come again.

Now, Walter Lee...

Now I paid the man...

...$3,500 down on the house.

There's $6,500 left.

On Monday morning...

...take $3,000 of this money and put it in a savings account...

...for Beneatha's medical schooling.

And the rest...

...the rest I want you to put in a checking account...

...with your name on it.

And from now on...

...any penny that comes out of it or goes into it...

...is for you to look after, for you to decide.

It ain't much, but it's all I got in the world.

And I'm putting it in your hands.

And I'm telling you, son...

...that from now on, you be the head of this family...

...the way you supposed to be.

Do you trust me like that?

I ain't never stopped trusting you...

...just like I ain't never stopped loving you.

All right, 4930, sir.

Well, let's get out and see what it looks like.

Hey, Old Moms...

...let's take a walk and see what the back yard looks like.

I'll "Old Moms" you!

I don't know if we should give this to her.

She ain't been very cooperative.

What is it?

Should we give it to her?

- She's been pretty good today. - I'll "good" you!

Open it, Mama.

Open it, Mama. It's for you.

Read the note, Mama.

Ruth wrote the note.

"To our own Mrs. Miniver...

...with love from Brother, Ruth and Beneatha."

Ain't that lovely!

Can I give her mine now, Daddy?

Travis didn't want to go in with us, so he got his own.

Now we don't know what he got.

Open it.

Lord have mercy!

Honey, you done went and bought Grandma a hat.

But Travis, honey...

...what is that?

A gardening hat, the kind the ladies wear in the magazines...

...when they work in their gardens.

We trying to make Mama Mrs. Miniver, not Scarlett O'Hara!

Oh, now darling, this is a beautiful hat. Beautiful hat!

I always wanted me one just like it. Just like it!

Hot dog, Mama!

There we are.

You look like you're fixing to go out and chop you some cotton.

Now come on, give Grandma a little hug.

Don't pay them no mind. Help me with these down in the basement...

...and come next spring, I'll show you how we grow azaleas.

- Where's the iron? - It's in here.

- And you're nailing it up? - Didn't you tell me to?

You said, "Nail it up."

Common sense ought to tell you...

...not to pack an iron with your mama's good dishes.

I'll mark it "Fragile."

Better get on away from me now.

Look here, I got all this work to do, man. I...

Talk about old-fashioned Negroes.

- What kind of Negroes? - Old-fashioned.

Girl, when them new Negroes have their convention...

...you'll be voted...

...chairman on the Committee for Unending Agitation.

Race, race, race! Well, girl...

...you'll be the first person in history...

...who ever successfully brainwashed themselves.

You know, even the NAACP takes a holiday sometime.

Give her time, honey.

When you become a doctor and perform your first operation...

Look here!

You grab your scalpel...

...you sharpen it...

...you're getting ready to cut the dude, you say...

..."By the way, what are your views on civil rights, old baby?"

Well, sticks and stones may break my bones but words'll never hurt me.

That's what you think.

- How do you do, miss? - How do you do?

I'm looking for...

Yes, who do you want, please?

Mrs. Lena Younger.

That's my mother. Please excuse me just one second. Wait.

Won't you come in, please?

My mother isn't here just now.

- Is it on business? - Yes. Well, of a sort.

Won't you have a seat?


...Mrs. Younger's son.

I take care of most of her business matters and things.

My name is Mark Lindner...

Walter Lee Younger.

- How do you do? - Hi.

My sister.

This is my wife over here.

What can we do for you?

I'm a representative of the Clybourne Park Improvement Association.

Rest your hat and bag on the floor. We're cluttered up from packing.

But as I was saying...

...I'm from the Clybourne Park Improvement Association...

...and we had it brought to our attention at the last meeting...

...that you people, or at least your mother...

...has bought a piece of residential property at 4...

- 4930 Clybourne Street. - That's right.

Would you care for something to drink? A beer?

- No, thank you, please. - Some coffee?

Thank you, nothing at all.

Now, I don't know how much you folks know about our organization.

It's one of those community organizations set up to look after...

...you know, things like...

...block upkeep and special projects and...

Then we also have what we call our New Neighbors Orientation Committee.

Yes. And what do they do?

Well, they...

Well, it's what you might call a sort of welcoming committee, I guess.

I mean, they... No, we...

Well, I'm chairman of the committee.

I go around and see the new people who move into the neighborhood...

...and give them the lowdown on the way we do things in Clybourne Park.

But then...

And then we have the category of what the association calls...

...Special Community Problems.

- And what are some of those? - Be quiet. Let the gentleman talk!

I'm sure that you people must be aware of some of the incidents...

...that have happened in various parts of the city when...

...colored people have moved into certain areas.

Because we have what I think is going to be...

...a unique type of organization in American community life.

Not only do we deplore that kind of thing...

...but we're doing something about it.

Now, we feel that...

We feel that most of the trouble in this world...

...when you come right down to it...

...most of the trouble exists because people don't sit down and talk.

You can say that again, mister.

That we don't try hard enough in this world...

...to understand the other fellow's problems, his point of view.

Now that's the truth.

Well, you see, our community is made up of people...

...who've worked hard as the dickens...

...to build up that little community.

Now, we're not rich or fancy people.

I mean, we're just hard-working, honest people...

...who don't really have much but those little homes...

...and a dream of the kind of community we want...

...to raise our children in.

Well, now, I don't say that we're perfect.

And there's a lot wrong in some of the things we want.

But you've got to admit that a man, right or wrong...

...has the right to want to have the neighborhood he lives in...

...in a certain kind of way.

At the moment, the overwhelming majority of people out there feel...

...that people get along better...

...take more of a common interest in the life of the community...

...when they share a common background.

Now wait.

Now wait.

I want you to believe me when I tell you...

...that race prejudice simply doesn't enter into it.

It's a matter of the people of Clybourne Park believing...

...rightly or wrongly, as I say...

...that for the happiness of all concerned...

...that our Negro families are happier...

...when they live in their own communities.

This, friends, is the Welcoming Committee.

This is what you come all the way across town to tell us, huh?

We've been having a fine conversation.

I hope you'll hear me all the way through.

Come on.

Well, you see, in the face of all the things I've said...

...we're prepared to make your family a very generous offer.

Thirty pieces and not a coin less.

Now, our association is prepared, through the collective efforts...

...of our people...

...to buy the house from you at a financial gain to your family.

Lord have mercy. Ain't this the living gall!

All right.


Now, the exact terms of the financial arrangement...

I don't want no exact terms of no financial arrangements.

You got anything else to say about how people...

...should talk these things over?

- I guess you don't feel... - Never mind. You get out of here!

I don't understand why you people are reacting this way!

What do you think you'll gain...

...by moving to a neighborhood where you aren't wanted...

...and where some elements...

People get worked up when their way of life...

...and all they've worked for is threatened.

Get out!

I'm sorry it went like this.

Just leave.

You just can't force people to change their hearts, son.

Well, now, children.

Is this all that's packed since I left here this morning?

I testify before God, my children got all the energy of the dead.

- What time is the moving men due? - Four o'clock.

- You had a caller. - Sure enough, who?

- The Welcoming Committee. - Who?

The Welcoming Committee. They said they'll sure be glad...

...when you get there.

They say they can hardly wait to see your face.

What's the matter?

Nothing the matter with us.

We're just telling you about the gentleman who called on you today...

...from the Clybourne Park Improvement Association.

What did he want?

He said that the one thing that they don't have out there...

...that they are just simply dying to have out there...

...is a fine family of colored people.

He left his card...

...in case.

Father, give us strength.

Did he threaten us?

They don't do it like that anymore.

He talked brotherhood. He said he can't understand why people can't...

...sit down and hate each other with good Christian fellowship.

You should hear the money they raised...

...to buy the house back from us. All we paid and then some.

What do they think we're going to do, eat them?

No, honey, marry them.

Lord, Lord, Lord!

Well, that's the way the crackers crumble. Joke.

What you doing?

I'm fixing my plant so it won't get hurt none on the way.

You going to take that thing with us to the new house?

That ragged-Iooking old thing?

It expresses me.

So there, Miss Thing.

You're going to make me mess up my thing here now.

Get on away from me!

- How does the song go again? - Go finish up packing.

I've got wings and you got wings

And all God's children got wings

All God's children got wings

We ain't finished packing. The men'll be here soon.

Bennie, you ain't packed one book yet.

Couldn't be the moving men. It's not hardly 2.

I'll get it.

You expecting company?

Let them in.

We need some more string.

Travis, run down to the store and get some string cord. Hurry.

Why don't you answer the door, man?


...sometimes it's just hard to let the future begin.

Now I got wings You got wings

You've got wings...

Hey, man. Where's Willie?

- He ain't with me. - Come on in. Come in.

- You know my wife, don't you? - Hi, Miss Ruth.

- Hi, Bobo. - Right on time, baby. Right on time.

Come on, sit down, sit down!

Let me hear.

Could I have a drink of water before I tell you about it?

Nothing go wrong on you?

- Let me tell you... - Nothing went wrong, man.

Let me tell you. You know how it was.

Now I got to tell you.

I mean, first I got to tell you how it was all the way.

- About the money I put in. - What about the money you put in?

It wasn't as much as we told you, me and Willie.

I'm sorry. I got a bad feeling about it.

- Why are you telling me? - I had a real bad feeling.

What happened down in Springfield?


What was supposed to happen in Springfield?

This deal that me and Walter went into.

Me and Willie was going to Springfield...

...and spread money around so as not to wait to get the liquor license.

That's what we was going to do. Everybody said that's the way.

You understand?

What happened down there, man?

I'm trying to tell you.

Tell me! What's the matter with you?

I didn't go to no Springfield.

- Why not? - I didn't have no reason to go.

- What are you talking about? - When I got to the train station...

...yesterday morning, 8:00 like we planned, Willie never did show up.

Why not? Where was he? Where is he?

That's what I'm trying to tell you. I don't know.

I waited six hours!

I called his house and I waited.

I waited in that train station six hours.

That was all the extra money I had in this world.

Man, Willie's gone!

What do you mean, Willie is gone?

Gone where?

You mean he went by himself to get the license?

You mean he went to Springfield by himself?

He didn't want too many people in on the business.

Willie got his own ways.

Maybe you were late yesterday, and he went there without you.

Maybe he's sick.

He's somewhere, man. He's somewhere.

We got to find him. You hear me?

He's gone!


Don't do it, man. Not with that money.

Not with that money.

I trusted you.

I put my whole life in your hand.

Man, do you know that that money...

...is made out of my father's flesh?

I'm sorry!

I'm sorry.

I had my life staked on this deal too.


...is it gone?

I gave you $6,500.

Is it gone?

All of it?

- Beneatha's money too? - I didn't go to the bank at all.

I seen him...

...night after night, come in.

And he'd look at the rug, and he'd look at me.

The red showing in his eyes...

...and the veins moving in his head.

I seen him grow old and thin before he was 40.

Working and working and working...

...like somebody's old horse.

Killing himself!

And you...

You give it all away in one day!

Oh, God!

Please look down...

...and give me strength!


Oh, God!

Hello. I had some free time, so I came over.

I thought I might help with the packing.

I love the look of packing crates.

The sight of a household in preparation. Movement. Progress.

- That makes me think of Africa. - Africa?

What kind of mood is this?

I thought I'd find you full of sunlight today.

Have I told you how deeply you move me?

Is something wrong?

Asagai, he gave away the money.

- Who? What? - The insurance money. My brother.

- He just gave it away. - Gave it away?

He invested with a man even Travis wouldn't have trusted...

...with his most worn-out marble.

And it's gone?

- It's gone. - I see.

I'm very sorry.

But my brother's not the one who's to blame.

By his lights, he did what made sense to him.

My mama's the crazy one.

She just handed him the money.

She just got up one fine day and just gave away my future.

Perhaps you don't see things as well as your mother does.

This is the end for me.

You know, it takes money to go to school.

What difference does it make?

Why would anybody want to be a doctor in this nutty world?

Oh, my! Aren't we full of despair?

Look here. Was it your money?

I said, was it your money that was lost?

- It belonged to all of us. - But can't this make you see?

There's something wrong when all the dreams in this house...

...depended on something that might never have happened...

...if a man had not died.

We used to say back home...

..."Accident was at the first and will be at the last...

...but a poor tree from which the fruits of life may bloom."

What is the matter with you?

My family has been wiped out.

Don't they use money where you're from?

I see only that you, with all of your keen mind...

...cannot understand the greatness of what your mother tried to do.

You're not too young to understand.

For all of her backwardness...

...she still acts, she still believes that she can change things.

So she is more of the future than you are.

But when somebody can get up in the morning...

...without consulting you, blithely hand away your future...

...then life's impossible. It's futile. It's despair.


I'm tired of listening.

I said that you will listen.

I have a bit of a suggestion.


When it's over, come home with me.

At this moment, you decide to be romantic.

Dear young creature of the New World...

...I don't mean across the city. I mean across the ocean. Home.

To Africa.

You mean to Nigeria?

"Three hundred years later, the African prince rose up out of the sea...

...and swept the maiden back across the middle passage...

...over which her ancestors had come."

- Nigeria? - Nigeria. Home.

I'll show you our mountains and our stars...

...and serve you cool drinks from gourds...

...and teach you the old songs...

...and the ways of our people.

And in time, we'll pretend that you've only been away for a day.

You're making me...

You're getting me all mixed up.

- Why? - Because.

Because too many things have happened.

Just too many things have happened.

I don't know what I feel or I think about anything at this minute.

I'm going to sit down and think.

Then I'll leave you.

Don't get up. Just sit awhile and think.

Never be afraid to sit awhile and think.

How often I have looked at you and said to myself...

..."So this is what the New World hath finally wrought."

Just look at what the New World hath wrought.

There he is. Just look at him.

There he is. Symbol of a rising class.

Entrepreneur. Titan of the system.

Did you dream of the yachts on Lake Michigan?

Did you see yourself sitting down at a conference table...

...surrounded by all the mighty bald men in America?

All halted, waiting breathless for your pronouncements on industry.


Chairman of the Board!

I look at you and see the final triumph of stupidity in this world!

Who was that?

That was your husband.

- Where'd he go? - Now how do I know?

Maybe he had an appointment at U.S. Steel.

You didn't say nothing bad to him, did you?

Bad? Me say something bad to him?

I said he was a sweet kid, full of dreams.

And everything was strictly peachy-keen.

Ain't it a mess in here, though.

We better stop moping around and do some work.

All this unpacking and everything we got to do.

Where's Brother?

He can help unpack some of these crates.

And one of you better call the moving men and tell them not to come.

Tell them not to come?

No sense in having them come here and go back.

They charge us for that too.

Tell her. Tell her we can still move.

Notes ain't but 125 a month. We got four grown people in this house.

We can work. We can all work.

I'll work.

I'll work 20 hours a day...

...in all the kitchens in Chicago.

I'll strap my baby on my back if I have to.

And I'll wash all the sheets in America.

I'll scrub.

We got to go.

Got to get out of here.

Honey, please!

I see things differently now.

I been thinking about some of the things we could do...

...to kind of fix up this place some.

I seen a secondhand bureau on Maxwell Street the other night.

Fit right there.

Needs some new handles and another coat of varnish.

But could be made to look brand-new.

And Walter Lee could get some new screens...

...and put them up around the baby's bassinet.

Place'll be looking just beautiful. Make us forget trouble ever come.

Sometimes, children...

...you just got to learn when to give up some things...

...and to hold on to what you got.

- Where you been? - I made a call.

- To who? - To The Man.

- What man, baby? - Don't you know who The Man is?

The Man.

Like the fellows in the street say, The Man...

...OId Captain Charlie, Mr. Boss Man.


That's right. That's good.

I asked him to come over.

Why do you want to see him?

We're going to do some business with that man.

- What are you talking about? - I'm talking about life.

You always asking me to see life as it is.

I laid in there on my back today, and I saw life just like it is.

He who gets and he who don't get.

It's all divided up between the takers and the tooken.

And some of us are always being tooken.

People like Willie never get tooken.

You know why the rest of us do? Because we are mixed up.

Always looking for the right and wrong of things.

We worry and cry and stay up nights...

...trying to figure out what's right, what's wrong...

...while the takers are out there, just operating.

Taking and taking.

Willie Harris...

...don't even count.

In the big scheme of things, Willie don't even count.

But I'll say one thing:

Harris taught me how to keep my eye on what does count in this world.

Thank you, William Harris.

- What'd you call that man for? - To tell him to come to the show.

We'll put on a show for the man. Just what he wants to see.

He said them people out where you want us to move...

...are so upset they'll pay us not to come.

We told the man to get out. "Get out," we said. Lord have mercy!

What a proud bunch of people we were this afternoon.

But that was an old way of thinking.

Are you talking about taking the money?

I'm not talking. I'm telling you what'll happen.

Oh, God! Where's the bottom?

Oh, God, where's the bottom? Where is the bottom?

You and that boy want everybody to carry a flag and spear...

...and sing marching songs.

You'll spend your life looking into right and wrong.

You know what'll happen?

He is going to wake up one day locked in a dungeon.

And the takers are going to have the key.

You forget it, child. There ain't no causes!

There is only taking in this world.

He who takes the most is the smartest.

And it don't make a bit of difference how.

- You making something inside me cry. - So cry.

- Some awful pain inside me. - Don't cry. Understand.

That white man will write checks for more money than we ever had.

It's important to him, and we'll help. We're going to put on a show.

I come from five generations of people...

...that was slaves and sharecroppers.

But ain't nobody in my family...

...never took no money from nobody...

...that was a way of saying we wasn't fit to walk the earth.

We ain't never been that poor.

We ain't never been that dead inside.

We're dead now.

All the talk about dreams and sunlight that goes on in this house.

It's all dead now.

What's the matter with you?

I didn't make this world.

It was handed to me exactly like it is.

I want some yacht someday. What's wrong with that?

And I want to put some pearls on my wife's neck.

Tell me what man decides what woman should or shouldn't wear pearls?

I tell you, I'm a man!

I say I want her to wear it.

- How will you feel on the inside? - Fine.

- You won't have nothing left. - I'll feel fine.

I'll look in his eye. "All right, Mr. Charlie, Mr. Lindner.

That's your neighborhood. You got a right to keep it that way.

Just give me the money and it's yours."

And I'll feel fine. I'll say more than that. I'll say...

..."Give me the money and you won't have to live next to no stinking..."

I'll feel fine. Maybe I'll get down on my black knees.

"All right, Mr. Charlie.

All right, Mr. Great White Father.

You just give us that money!

And we won't come there and dirty up your white neighborhood!"

And I'll feel fine! Fine! Fine!

That's not a man. That's nothing but a toothless rat.

Death's done come in this house.

Done come walking in my house...

...on the lips of my children.

You were...

...what's supposed to be my beginning again.

You were...

...what's supposed to be my harvest.

How did we get to this here place?

You! Mourning your brother!

- He's no brother of mine. - What?

That individual, from this day on, is no brother of mine!

That's what I thought you said.

You feeling like you're better than he is today?

What did you tell him a minute ago? That he wasn't a man?

You give him up for me?

You done wrote his epitaph too, like the rest of the world?

Who give you the privilege?

Will you be on my side for once?

You saw what he did. You saw him down there on his knees.

Didn't you teach me to despise any man who would do that...

...who would do what he's going to do?

I taught you that.

Me and your daddy.

But I thought I taught you something else too.

I thought I taught you to love him.

Love him? There's nothing left to love.

There's always something left to love.

Have you cried for that boy today?

Not for yourself and the family because we lost the money.

I mean for him.

And what he's gone through.

And God help him.

God help him, what it's done to him.

Child, when do you think is the time to love somebody the most?

When he's done good and made things easy for everybody?

That ain't the time at all.

It's when he's at his lowest...

...and he can't believe in himself because the world's whipped him so!

When you starts measuring somebody...

...measure him right, child.

Measure him right.

You make sure that you done taken into account...

...the hills and the valleys he's come through...

...to get to wherever he is.

The moving men are downstairs. The truck pulled up.

Are they, baby?

- They're downstairs? - Hello.


I came right over.

He's here.

I was certainly glad to hear from you people today.

Life can be so much simpler than people let it be most of the time.

Now, with whom do I negotiate?

Are you Mrs. Younger?

Or your son there?

Just some official papers, sonny.

You go on downstairs now, baby.

No, you don't. You stay right here.

And you make him understand what you're doing.

You teach him good...

...like Willie Harris taught you.

And you show him where our five generations done come to, son.

Go ahead.

Go ahead.

Mr. Lindner...

...we called you...

...me and my family...

...because we are plain people, you know?

Real plain people.

I work as a chauffeur, you know.

Most of my life.

My wife works in people's kitchens...

...and so does my mother.

I mean, we are plain people.

Mr. Younger...

My father...

My father was a laborer...

...all of his life.

And my father once...

My father once almost beat a man to death because this man...

...called him some kind of name, you know?

That's my sister.

And she...

...is going to be...

...a doctor.

- And we are very proud of that. - I'm sure...

You see, we come from a long line...

...of proud people.

This is my son.

My son.

And he makes the sixth generation...

The sixth generation of my family in this country.

And we have...

We have all thought about your offer.

And we've decided...

...to move into our house.

Because my father, he earned it...

...brick by brick.

We don't intend to cause no trouble...

...or fight no causes.

And we're going to try to be good neighbors.

That's all.

That's all we have to say.

We don't want...

...your money.

I take it, then, you've decided to occupy.

That's what the man said.

Then I appeal to you.

- You're older and wiser. - I'm afraid you don't understand.

My son said we was going to move.

And there ain't nothing left for me to say.

You know these young folks nowadays.

You can't hardly do a thing with them. Goodbye.

If you're final about it...

...there's nothing left for me to say.

I sure hope you people know what you're doing.

For goodness sake, if the moving men are here...

...let's get out of here.

Ain't it the truth? Put Travis' good jacket on him.

Fix your tie and tuck in your shirt. You look like a hoodlum.

Lord have mercy! Where's my plant?

You all start on down, children.

Now don't go empty-handed.

Where's that box with my skillets? I want to be in charge of them.

I'm going to fix us the biggest dinner we ever had tonight.

Asagai asked me to marry him today. Go with him to Africa.

You ain't old enough to marry nobody.

Darling, that ain't no bale of cotton.

I've had that chair 25 years.

I would like to be able to use it again!

I mean, he wants me to be a doctor. To go and be a doctor in Africa.

What's that about Africa?

Asagai asked me to marry him, go with him to Africa.

Girl, you'd better get them silly notions out of your head...

...and start looking for a man with some loot.

What do you have to do with who I marry?

Plenty. I'm the head of this family.

I been thinking of marrying you off to George Murchison.

George Murchison?

I wouldn't marry him if he was Adam and I was Eve.

They're something, all right, my children.

They're something, all right.

- Let's go. - I'm coming.

He come into his manhood today, didn't he?

Kind of like the rainbow after the rain.

Come on!

I'm coming. Go along, darling. I'll be right down.

What are you doing?

I'm coming!

Donated by SergeiK