Dreamchild (1985) - full transcript

Exploring the somewhat darker and more mysterious side of the Lewis Carroll's classic book, the movie follows Alice Liddell (the book's inspiration) as an old woman who is haunted by the characters she was once so amused by. As she thinks back on it, she starts to see her relationship with the shy author/professor in a new way and realizes the vast change between the young Alice and the old.

For God's sake, shut up!

It's all his fancy, that.

This mock-turtle has nae got any sorrow,
you know.

This young lady here...
she wants to know your history...

So she does.

When we were little...

...we went to school...
in the sea.

Abso-bloomin'- lutely!

The master was an old turtle.

We used to call him "tortoise".

Why did you call him tortoise
if he wasn't one?

We called him "tortoise"
because he "taught us".

Oh, then...very droll!

You ought to be ashamed of yourself!
Asking such a simple question

But how many hours a day
did you do lessons?

10 hours the first...9 the next...

- ...then 8...
- What a curious plan!

That's a reason that's hopeless...
and stupid!

Because they "lessen" from day to day!

Then the 11th day
must have been a holiday!

Of course it was!

Not very bright...are you?

Where ARE you?

Where have you gone?

Well, Lucy...our very last night
on board the 'Berengaria'.

Yes, ma'am.

We must compose ourselves, my dear...

...for whatever perils and novelties
may lie ahead of us...

...in the United States.

Yes, Miss Hargreaves.

Well, at least the people there
speak a FORM of English...

...even though with a sort of
rubbery paste in their mouths.

It's called chewing-gum.

They actually talk to one
when it's still in their mouths...

...moving it from one side of the cheek
to the other.

Did you know that, Lucy?

I don't think ALL of them do,
Mrs Hargreaves.

The Americans on this ship, don't.

No, I'm not talking about the class of Americans
who travel to and from Europe, child.

I refer to the 'common man'...

...the vast hordes...
the 'Great Unwashed',

Now, what is it child?

Why are you distracted?


It's not cheap music that disturbs you...
it's your youth.

Well...we've had our little
nocturnal perambulation...

Time for bed...I'm tired...
I must close my eyes.

Come along, Lucy.

Lucy...I said come along!

Mrs Hargreaves...

Oh, what is it?!

I wonder if I might be allowed
to go and listen to the band.

- You?!
- Only for a little while.

Come, come...No I really don't think
you should be late tonight.

Disembarkation is a notoriously
exhausting business.

And my hair needs
a thoroughly good brushing, my dear...

...Lots of vigour.

Is that it?

Rumours of war in Europe...

Another gang war...a plane crash...

...a kidnapping.

I think that covers
the lighter side, gentlemen...

No heavy stuff at all.

Here's something that might be interesting...
Well, let's have it.

It's about 'Alice in Wonderland'.

Oh, great...that's ALL we need!

There's this old dame
they found in England...

She was Alice...
I mean the real Alice...

The one that Lewis Carroll
first told the story to, 70 years ago.

Is that right?

Is she a real person?

That's like saying
fairies are for real.

They are!

Haven't you met the new guy
we hired to do the ladies' page?

What about her, Harry?

She's arriving in New York tomorrow
on the 'Berengaria'.

Columbia are going to give her
an honorary degree.

It's part of a celebration...

Lewis Carroll was born
100 years ago.

How old did you say she was?
She's 80.

Carroll told her the story
when she was 10.

Get her!

We want her.

You got to be kidding, surely...
An 80-year old woman from England?

She's probably too ga-ga by now
to talk sensible anyway.

Now listen!..

Any old dame
who fell down a rabbit hole...

...and sat down to tea
with the Mad Hatter...

...is gonna cheer ME up!

Let alone our readers.

And I'M a miserable son-of-a-bitch...

...or hadn't you heard?

We've heard.

If they see a huge act,
I'll call the cops.

I'm just coming in
to clear out my desk.

You got fired a month ago...
and you've been in dozens of times since.

Forget it...
They won't take you back!

It wasn't so terrible...
what I did.

Making up a whole interview?

It was what Lindberg would've said,
if he'd talked to me.

Anyway, I'm going in
to argue my case...I'm broke.

I'm desperate.

There's a whole big Depression
going on out there, Sally...

I can't even get a job
washing dishes...

...ME...with all my talent!

"Religious Affairs"...


"Are dreams...right?"...


As soon as the boat clears quarantine
tomorrow morning.

You sure you want this?

OK, OK...I only asked!

What's that?

Do you know anything
about "Alice in Wonderland"?

Sure, do I know anything about it...

Yeah, it's a book!

Don't look at me, Sally...
Just keep typing, please.

Well, well!

Brave Jack Dolan...
ex ace-reporter...

Would-be all-purpose hustler...

...and 100% C-O-W-A-R-D!

You can come out now!

He's gone.

He's a bum!

So, anyway...
about Alice in Wonderland...?

It's a kid's book...
It's about a girl named Alice.

She goes down a hole
in the ground...and she...

You seem excited.

I am!

When you are my age, you will see,
you'll have long-since learned

...the greater one's anticipation of a thing,
the fewer pleasures it eventually yields.

Lucy...I'm going below
for an hour...

Unlike you, I need to compose myself.

You may stay here
and examine the foreign shore.

Thank you, ma'am.

Fetch me in exactly 45 minutes,
and not a minute before.

Unless some Red Indians
try to come aboard in their canoes.

Either the well was very deep,
or she fell very slowly...

Well, she had plenty of time
as she went down, to look about her.

Little wonder what was going
to happen next.

Around us for gladness
the bluebells were ringing,

...and then little, thought I,
how soon we would part.

No. no, Alice!
What's the matter with you?

"How soon we SHOULD part"...

You're a terrible fuss, Lorina!..
What difference does it make?

How's it I sing it so bad?

You don't sing it RIGHT!

Don't say "DON'T", Edith...
say "DO NOT".

It is vulgar to say "DON'T".

Then, YOU said it!

I did not!

You DID, Alice.

Why are you such a know-it-all,

Well, I LIKE that!

seems to me, you're the know-it-all
around here.


Come on then...
What's the difference?

She don't know.

DON'T say DON'T!


Mr Dodgson would say

You'll get struck, making fun of him.

He says I'm a w-w-w-wistful, li-li-li-little,

WHO says that?

Mr Dodgson, the mathematics tutor,

Mr Dodgson said that?

Don't fuss...he was talking
about photography, Mother.

About the pose for my picture.

He HAS photographed Tennyson,
you know.

"Half a league, half a league...
half a league onward..."

"All in the valley of death,
rode the six hundred."

Yes, yes, Alice, don't show off...

We all know
"The Charge of the Light Brigade."

I don't.

But Tennyson was quite rude
to poor Mr Dodgson...

You didn't know THAT,
did you?

What do you mean, Alice...

Did he make fun of his stutter?

Be quiet!

Well, Tennyson told his guests...

...that he often dreams
long passages of poetry...

Then he turned to poor Mr Dodgson
who'd scarcely said a single word...

- How DO you know?
- Mr Dodgson told me. of course.

And Tennyson turned
to Mr Dodgson and said...

"You, I suppose,
dream photographs."

Mr Dodgson seems to confess
a remarkable number of things to you, my dear.

Oh yes, Mr Dodgson talks to me a lot.

So it seems.

He says every man should have someone
he can trust his secrets with.


But why on earth should
he say that to YOU?

Because he loves me, of course.

He loves us all, Mother.

Each and every one of us.

"The Times"?..

I thought the "Trib" would be the only one
to have this crazy idea.

Are YOU kidding?

She's better than Peter Pan, Huck Finn
and Santa Claus rolled into one...

You know why?

She's for real.

You're not supposed to be here...
You're not entitled...

You don't work for the papers

No, no, no...but watch!

Hey...fellas...how are you doing?

Oh, look at your little bunny.

So cute!

What's the little girl's name?

Lucy comer here!

What do you want?

You're with Alice, right?
Where's the old lady?

I don't know what you're talking about.

C'mon...Alice...Alice in Wonderland...
You work with her, don't you?

What's she like, Lucy...
and where is she?

Down her rabbit hole?

Don't be scared, honey...

We only want to set up
a press conference.

An interview with her.

Why don't you find Mrs Hargreaves...
that's who they want...

They won't leave either of you alone
until they've seen her.

Now, where is she?

In the cabin?

But she mustn't be disturbed.

She said she'd...

Would you like somebody to come
below deck with you, Miss?

You'll get no 'exclusive' here, Jackie-boy!

So, care, you guys!..

He doesn't even work
for a paper anymore.

So, what's he doing here?

So, go on...go get her...
Bring her up here, honey!

We won't bite!

Not much, we won't!

Please, I beg you...
all of you...

...not to address her as "Alice."

- What's that?
- We mustn't call her "Alice".

No...her name's Mrs Hargreaves.

And she's be very upset if strangers
were to call her anything else.

Mrs Hargreaves...
I can see it now...

"Mrs Hargreaves in Wonderland."

It ain't got the same ring, sweetheart.

Where is Mr Hargreaves, anyway?

Who is he? Some kind of
white rabbit?

Have you any messages
for the children of America, ma'am?

Message for the children?

I have been invited here
to receive an honorary degree

...from Columbia University.

As part of New York City's celebration
of the centenary of the birth...

...of the Rev Charles Dodgson.

Who's he ma'am?
Can you spell that?


Thank you.

I did not expect so much fuss.

I was simply the little girl
to whom he once told his tales.

I can scarce recall him
after all these long years.

Come on, Alice...ALICE!

I'm asked if I have any message
for the children.

I do...
Indeed I do.

I hope they'll more successfully learn
than you appear to have done...

...how to address their elders...
with respect.

I hope too, that they
will say their prayers...

...before getting into bed.

That they will sit up straight
at the dinner table.

And always keep their hands and faces
spotlessly clean.

And read sensibly books in a light
good enough not to damage their eyes...

And yet not so harsh
as to entirely remove the shadows

from the corners of the room.

Now, if you please...
I wish to be pestered no more...

...with your clamour,
or your impertinence.

Come along, Lucy dear.

Alice, I got a quick picture
with the white rabbit.

I guess she doesn't like rabbits.

Are you sure this is for us?

See you at Columbia University, ma'am.

It's part of the celebrations.

Welcome to what we earnestly hope
will prove to be a new Wonderland...

...for an Alice who is ever young.

What's it all mean?

Why so much fuss?

Lucy...whatever shall we do?

Mrs Hargreaves?

I'd no idea so much
would be expected of me.

Would you like me to order you
a nice cup of tea?

Tea? Yes!..oh no...no!

No, I'm told the Americans don't know
how to make a proper cup of tea.

In any case, my poor old head
is in such a whirl...

We're not going
to be left alone.

Not for one minute.

No...not more, surely.

It looks like a greenhouse
in here already.

Who is it dear?

What do YOU want?



You mind if I come in?



Madam...these few red roses...

are for the enchanting little girl
of all our childhoods...

...who grew up to be
such a gracious lady.

Are you by any chance,
one of those...

What are they called...?..

- Ma'am?
- Homosexuals.

Oh, no!

No, I'm not.

Thank you, just the same...

I don't want them...

The flowers.

Don't you?

Well, in the first place,
I don't know who you are, young man...

And secondly, we're already
up to our knees in blooms.

Flowers remind me
of death, you know.

In which case,
I'm very, very sorry, ma'am...

I'll take them with me when I go.

When you go...yes.

I have no wish to be ungracious...

But would you mind telling me
what it is you want...

Are you employed
by this establishment?

He was one of the reporters
that came onto the ship.

He's the one who called for silence.

John Francis Dolan...

New York Herald Tribune...


One of THAT rabble.

Yes, we were, weren't we?

But that's exactly why I'm here,
Mrs Hargreaves.

5 minutes ago I telephoned
a friend of mine on the Trib...

There's gonna be an editorial
in the paper tomorrow...all about YOU.


I just had a feeling there WOULD be...
and not only in the Herald Tribune...

I jotted down what they say...
I'd like to read it to you...

Is it inconceivable that her presence...
that's you, Mrs Hargreaves...

Is it inconceivable that her presence might
remind a host of worried Americans...

...how much more there is in the world
than economics...

..and how scant a relationship
the world has to...


What is he saying...
What does it all mean?

If you go to any one of these windows,
and look out...

No...Much too high!

You'd see what looks like
what is a very rich city...

Probably the richest city
in the world, but...

We're in the middle of a Depression.

- I know that.
- OK...so there's a lot of worry out there.

Thieving, crime, racketeers...

Hoodlums, kidnappers, killers!

Don't you have something
that I believe is called an "electrical chair"?

"Electric chair" ma'am.


Yes, we do...but troubles
can't always be cured.

Sometimes we have to dream a little.

Weak...very weak...

One should always address oneself
to things as they actually are.

Pull the switch...
Fry them!

That's as maybe...

But people want to think of
nice things now and again.

People want to make-believe.

Don't they?

- Yes...they do.
- You see. - Lucy!..

Speak when you're spoken to,
if you please.

Sorry ma'am.

Yes, she's right...they do...

And you're going to find that out
over here, Mrs Hargreaves.

We all want you to be the...

The little girl you once were.

The little girl Mr Dodgson
made me out to be...

...70 years ago.

Yes...yes...Lewis Carroll and...

It's intolerable...quite intolerable!

It would be difficult enough at my age
to be what I once was...

But utterly impossible
to be what I never was.

You're throwing away
a great, great chance here...

Can't you just sometimes TALK
like Alice in the book...you know...

Play the part.

No...that is completely beyond me,
young man...

And apart from being dishonest...
it is also extremely vulgar.

Listen to me, Alice!..

Is there no one in this land
who has ANY manners?


In a few days time
I shall be 80 years old.

If, and only if, you were 81...

it MIGHT be possible for you
to call me by my given name...

...upon so short an acquaintance.

Kindly address me
as 'Mrs Hargreaves'.


I beg your pardon?

Did you say you were almost 80?

Are you attempting to suggest
that in some way I look younger?

Am I attempting...no..no...

There's no need
to attempt anything...

Because you don't look
a day over...


I won't say,
because you won't believe me.

Ma'am...you LOOK terrific!

What a fraudulent
young man you are!

You're lovely!

That's it!..

When you clapped your hands like that,
I could see right back across the years...

I could see why this Lewis Carroll fellow...
whatever his real name was...

...fell head over heels, with...

What did he call you?

"The Dreamchild".

I don't think I...oh!..dear!

Mrs Hargreaves...


What is it?

Mrs Hargreaves...

Alright...it's nothing...

Shall you lie down?

Something or someone
stepped on my grave.

That's all.

Now, now Alice...

We must try to keep quiet, quite still.

Oh, dear!

Mama says that's impossible.

Oh, she does, does she?

How very tiresome,
mothers can be!

She says I'm a fidget...
"A perpetual fidget".

I shouldn't worry
too much about it, Alice.

I like you exactly the way you are.

Do you, Mr Dodgson?

Really and truly?


Mr Dodgson?

I wouldn't change one hair of your head

I think i will lie down
for a little while.

If you don't mind...Mr...

You must ask him to leave.

Oh, yes...of course.

But ma'am...

May I please speak with you later?

Come along, Lucy.

What does he want?
What is he after?

Something, I'll be bound.

It won't be long now, Lucy.

Not long to wait.


Not long before I see, what I'm told
is the radiant face of my Maker.

No, ma'am...
I'm sure you have plenty of...

Plenty of...

Plenty of what?

Plenty of days?

I doubt it.

Not even many an hour.

You don't know that!

Of course I know it,
you foolish child!

I don't mind, Lucy...

It will come when it comes,
and it will come as a friend.

When I was your age...

I used to wonder how the very old
managed to cope with the thought.

Now that I'm "very old" myself...

I find "The Grim Reaper"
has a smile on his face, after all.

Mrs Hargreaves...

Come on...
Off with the other boot!

Yes, ma'am!

You're a good girl, Lucy...

...on the whole!

My husband is dead...

And my sons were killed by The Hun.

You know the thing
I shall most strongly object to...

...when the trumpets sound
on the 'Other Side'?


The Almighty Maker shall make the mistake
of bidding me welcome in German.

I'm not REALLY worried.

I'm sure God is a gentleman.

Let's hope so.

Well, if He isn't...

There's a good number
of my family before me...

...who must have had
a considerable shock.


I wish this could go on forever and ever.

Perhaps it will.

Nonsense, Mr Dodgson...

Nothing lasts forever.

Not on this river, anyway.

Oh, but it does, Mrs Liddell...

It does last forever...

At least, if you're rowing, it does.

Nevertheless Mr Duckworth...

We have to be back at the deanery
an hour before dinner.

Oh, mama...don't talk
about going home, yet.

Don't say "DON'T"!

Oh, no...we haven't had
our tea and cakes yet.

Very nice cakes, too.

Although I do think we ought to find
a nice glade with some shade.

Alice...what are you doing?!

Alice...apologise at once...how dare you!

What a terrible thing to do!

But he was looking at me.

A captain can look at a queen, you know.

"Looking at you" Alice...?
Really, I don't know what you mean.

Be quiet.

Say you're sorry, at once!

No, no...it doesn't matter.

Dear Mr Dodgson...I'm sorry.

I was only playing.

I'll just show you how really truly sorry
I am, Mr Dodgson...

You shall have my prettiest handkerchief
to dry your poor face.

Thank you.

Don't be foolish, Alice.

I'm quite sure Mr Dodgson has a much more
sensible handkerchief of his own.

Yes, of course.

It's big...with white...spots on it.


But how...?

I didn't quite close the door
when I left.

But why?

Need you ask?


Please don't be scared...
It's alright.

It's NOT right!

You must go...
Please...You must!

You want me to?

No, but...


I just want to talk with you
for a few minutes...

That's all...Honest!
Come down with me...

Come down with me!

We can't talk here...
we'll have some tea or something.

No, I can't DO that!

She's asleep!

Isn't she?!

Come on.

It was time for Alice
to have some tea.

She saw a table...
set with cups and saucers and plates...

...under a tree.

The Hatter...

...who was quite, quite mad...

...and the March Hare...

...equally mad, of course...

..were already there...

...having their tea.

A dormouse was sitting between them.

What a quaint thing!

In fact...he was fast asleep!

The other two were using it
as a cushion.

A what?

A cushion.

A cushion!

How very uncomfortable
for the Dormouse.



Where ARE you, girl?!

Come here!


What on earth are...

- You said "tea".
- What?


You said
"Come down for tea."

But what this is, is "tea"...

It's a "tea dance".

Come on...
Relax, Lucy...relax!

What if she wakes up
and I'm not there?

You can't spend every second
of every minute, worrying about THAT.

What sort of life is that?

Come on...let's dance..
That's what the music's for.

What's the matter...?
Did I step on your toes?

She's going to die.


Any moment now.

And she knows it.

Mrs Hargreaves.

She's going to die.

THEN what shall I do?

She's very old, Lucy...
We all have to...sometime.

Besides...she doesn't treat you
very well, does she?

I don't have anyone else.

Oh, that can't be true, Lucy...

You don't know anything about it.

It's just different in England...

Not many jobs
for someone like me.

It's the same
the whole world over...

It's hard times, darlin'.

This isn't just a job, though...

She makes me see the world.

At least I see it through HER eyes.



Alright...I'm coming...

I'm coming...

- No room..
- No room!

There's plenty of room!

Plenty of room!

Have some wine!

I don't see any wine.

There isn't any!

Well, it wasn't very civil
of you to offer it!

Well it wasn't very civil of YOU,
to sit down, without being invited!

I didn't know it was YOUR table.

It's laid for a great many more
than three.

Why is a raven
like a writing desk?


I believe I can guess that!

Do you think you can find out
the answer to it?

Exactly, sir!

Then you should say what you mean!

I do...at least I mean what I say...

That's the same thing, you know.

Not the same thing,
a bit, you fool!

You might just as well say...

"I see what I eat"
is the same thing as

"I eat what I see."

You MIGHT just as well say that...

"I like what I get"...

Is the same as
"I get what I like."

What day of the month is it?

What day of the month is it?!


You stupid half-wit!

Ugly old hag!

You should be dead.



I think it's the 4th.

The 4th?..the 4th?..the 4th?

You're 2 days wrong!..
Wrong! Wrong!


Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!

I told you butter
wouldn't suit the works.

But it WAS the best butter...
The best.

There must be some crumbs in it!..

...shouted the Mad Hatter,
shaking the watch...

...very, very angrily.

I say old chap, I really think
we ought to eat something, you know.

Time for the buns!

"What a funny watch," said Alice.


It tells the day of the month
and not what o'clock it is.


...to wake the Dormouse...

...the Hatter poured a little tea
upon its nose.

Hot tea.

Stop it! Stop!

Hot! Hot!

Oh, it's bloomin' hot, that tea!

Have you guessed the riddle yet?

No, I give up.

What's the answer?

I haven't the faintest idea.

Nor I!

Well, I think you should do something
more with the time, than waste it...

...in asking riddles
that have no answers...

...Riddles that...

Wasting time...

Do you mean...
you've never even spoken to Time?

- No.
- But she knows how to BEAT time.

When I play music.

That accounts for it, Alice.

He won't stand beating, you know!

He's a very sensitive fellow.

In story, that is.

Yes, Mr Dodgson...

In a story.

I'm not keeping you?

Well, old chap...some of us think
it's time we had some tea, ourselves.

I'm so sorry!

I'm so enjoying the Mad Hatter
and the March Hare.

I WISH they were real.

Mrs Hargreaves speaking.


I beg your pardon?

I don't understand...

A broadcast?

You see...5 minutes...
nothing to worry about.


They DO look like a pack of wolves
when they're all together, don't they?

Those reporters.

If she's woken up,
and I'm not there...

Are you frightened of her?

I'm frightened of everything.

I'm frightened of the world.

Mrs Hargreaves is speaking...

Yes! Yes!..this she...
Mrs Alice Hargreaves.

Have I heard of your soap?

What do you mean..."soap"?


Oh..I don't take...

I'm sorry...it's all my doing, ma'am...

Lucy...you wicked, wicked girl!

How dare you leave me alone
in this strange...

But I thought you
were so asleep that...

Lucy I'm so...

- It IS my fault...
- Please don't...I'm sorry...

I didn't think.

The telephone...the damnable telephone
keeps ringing.

The most impossible people...

I don't understand a word they say.

I don't understand it at all!

What do they want of me?
Who do they think I am?

All these questions!

The fuss...the telephone calls...

And it's all coming back...

I'm starting to dream about it.

Dodgson's coming back
to haunt me.

He's coming back...
I don't know what to do!

Mrs Hargreaves...

You can make a lot of money
out of all this.

What did you say?

Money, ma'am.

A lot.

How much?


Dollars or pounds?

Take your pick.

Those calls you had...
I'd lay you any odds...

They were asking you to do this
or that interview, or broadcast...

or endorsement...

Somebody even had the unmitigated gall
to ask me to open a toy store!

Do they think I am some sort
of a tradesperson?

How much?

I beg your pardon?

How much did they offer?

You mean they would pay?

Yes, ma'am...indeed they would.

Filthy lucre!

I have noticed that it is only those
who do not have a sufficiency of it...

..who call "money" by unpleasant names.

People want to buy a piece
of the genuine storybook Alice...

..and I can steer you towards the right place,
at the right time...

...at the right price.

Is something wrong, honey?

Is that why you asked me
to the tea-dance downstairs?

So that YOU can...

Well...I don't foxtrot very well, do I?

But I thought...

I thought...

Hey...now wait a minute...Lucy...!

Never mind that, young man...

Sit down, if you please!

Sit down and talk to me.

As to dishonest flirtations...

It's always better to be sparing
with the butter...

...and never put it on
with the bread-knife.

That feeling...


Everything you were about to say
has been said before.


I know that well.


You wormed your wiggly way
into the sweet young thing's heart

...haven't you, Jackie-boy?

No...the old woman's.



Liar, I said.

You're the girl for me.

You don't mean it, do you?

Men! You don't mean it.

I'm gonna get drunk.


Yes, Mr Dolan?

Coming up.

So, what's she like?

She's sour, sharp...

Feeble sometimes...and VERY English.

No...the little girl.

She's shy...naive...


And sweet.

Sugar candy.

Alone now, for 2 scorching days
without water, on the endless prairie...

Watched only by a lonesome vulture...

Angelina Collier could find no hope
on any horizon.


Her horse exhausted...

Her lips cracked.

Her heart heavy.


But Angelina was not alone...

The renegade Big Chief Coiling Snake...

and his vicious tribe, had already seen
their next innocent victim.

The complications with this Mrs Hargreaves...

Are you Mrs 'HAR-GREEVES'?

'HAR-GREEVES' Mrs Hargreaves...

You just take it straight through,
from the top...

Until you reach the bottom.


Only please sound as though
you really mean it.

I always mean what I say.

She knows what to do, Mr Marl.

Please!..I'm doing a show here.

Oh no!

Help me!



Meanwhile, on another part of the prairie...

'Tumbleweed Luke'...at peace with himself
and the world...

...sings a song, as he moseys along
with his faithful horse, 'Bullet'.

I'm confessin' that I love you...

Tell me do you love me too?

I'm confessin' that I need you...

Honest I do...

I need you every moment...

In your eyes I read such strange things...

But your lips deny they're true...

Will your answer really change things?

Makin' me blue...

I'm afraid someday you'll leave me...

Say'n "Can't we still be friends?"

If you go you know you'll grieve me...

All in life on you depends...

And I'm guessing that you love me...

Dreaming dreams of you in vain...

I'm confessin' that I love you...

Over again.

Well, guys, Mrs Hargreaves
was really taken by you all.

A most exciting tale.

We were thrilled,
weren't we, Lucy?

Yes ma'am.

It's an honour for us to have
the real Alice in Wonderland here.

Isn't she a darlin'?

None of us had any idea Alice
was a real person...

A real little girl.

It's like having a history book
come alive.

Oh, gracious, I'm not
as ancient as that!

What was he like, ma'am...
Lewis Carroll?

It's always been one
of my favorite stories.

I was a caterpillar once, you know...
on the wireless.

Good gracious, you're English,
aren't you?

Barnwick...born and bred...

You couldn't really have an American
Alice in Wonderland, could you?

Oh, come on...
They're bringing a film out of it now.

They are? Who is?


It was in last week's "Variety".

It's Paramount I think.

Bing Crosby's playing the Mock Turtle.

And Gary Cooper's in it, too.

But who's to be ME?

Can they do that?

Doesn't seem right.

Don't worry about it...
we'll take 'em to the cleaners.

He's talking American.

Mr Dolan's using slang, ma'am...
He's talking about money.


You can always tell
when he's doing that...

His lips go all wet.

Hey Lucy!

Well folks, we've only got this space
for 15 minutes.

Maybe we'd better...

Think of the microphone
as a sort of face...a friendly face...

A face?

Whose face?

Goodbye...good luck.

When I was a little girl...

...who followed a white rabbit,
and fell down a hole in the ground...

I found a bottle which said "Drink me."

It made me very, very small...

But now that I am so much older...

This'd be quite a different Wonderland...

I found on the shelf
quite another bottle.

...which looked so good,
it didn't need to say...

I can't say this, I can't possibly...
it's utterly absurd.

For crying out...
That's the third time!

He's writin' in the paper...
It sounds like a bush-fire.

OK...once more...cue the music.

Mrs Hargreaves, please...

It would be much better if you didn't
analyse what you're reading...

Don't even think about it...
It's only a stupid commercial.

Well, thanks very much!

Not think about
what I'm saying?

I've never heard anything
so reprehensible in my life!

What's so funny, miss?

Nothing's funny...

Mrs Hargreaves...

Please wait for the music!

But...there was a green light!

Cue the music!

When I was a little girl...

...who followed a white rabbit
and fell down the hole...

Who are you?

I hardly know Sir...
just at present.

At least I knew who I was,
when I got up this morning.

But I think I must have changed
several times since then.

What do you mean by that...
explain yourself!

I'm afraid I can't
put it more clearly...

Being so many different sizes in the day,
is very confusing.

It isn't.

Well, perhaps you haven't
found it so...yet...

...before you turn into a chrysalis...

Pooh to that!

You will one day...and after that
into a butterfly.

I think you should find it
a little queer...don't YOU?

Not a bit!

Well, perhaps your feelings
may be different.

All I know is it would feel
very queer to me.

So...you think you've changed,
do you?

I'm afraid I AM changed.

I can't remember things.

Can't remember WHAT things?

I don't know.

Let's say...things best not gone into...

...but might...remember...

My mother tore up
ALL his letters to me.

What letters?

Mr Dodgson's letters.

Why should she want to do that?

Unless there was something...wrong.

Something I can't bear to think about.

So don't think about it...
You silly old baggage!

I don't...

I mean...

I didn't.

It was the journey out here...

Everyone ASKING things of me...

The way I've USED him...

It's too bad.


"You are OLD...Mrs Hargreaves!"

Oh, yes...

"You are...



"You are old Father Williams,"
the young man said.

Your hair has become very white!

And yet you can certainly
stand on your head.

Do you think at your age,
it is right?

"In my youth," Father William
replied to his son...

"I feared it might injure the brain."

But now that I'm perfectly sure
that I have none...

...why, I do it again and again!

Oh, it's lovely, Mr Dodgson!


The most exciting...the most wonderful thing
that ever happened.

i shall read it again
and again and again!

Then I shall start at the last page
and finish at the first.

I hope you will always cherish it, Alice.

Dear, dear Alice!

I WILL, Mr Dodgson.

Even when you're quite grown up,
little Alice?

I said so, Mr Dodgson.

Yes, of course...

I don't mean to doubt you.

It's only a book, isn't it,
Mr Dodgson?


Aren't you coming boating?

We are ready, you know.

Hurry up Alice,
or we'll go without you.

We'll meet you in the quad.

Shan't be long...
it's only Mr Dodgson here.

I'm sorry, Mr Dodgson,
but I have to go now.

Lorina is going on the river.

And there's a nice young man
called Reggie Hargreaves coming too.

And he's a VERY good oarsman!

He seems very fond of Lorina.

I brought you this book today,

Do YOU know why I chose today?

To give you the very first
presentation copy of this book, Alice.

I HAVE to rush, Mr Dodgson.

It's exactly one year today,
since OUR trip up the river.

Lorina will be very impatient
with me.

No, no...you must hurry, my dear...
You must hurry.


Three commercials, in one afternoon.

Soup, soap, and soda-water!

I expect they all taste the same!

I thought Jack was supposed
to be joining us.

Lucy, is something the matter
with your food?

No, ma'am...thank you.

You're not eating it.

I know.

You know, Mrs Marl used to
cook some meals for me sometimes...

It's not exactly cheap, you know.

It all came out of my pocket.

Yes, ma'am.

Lucy, there are many millions
in this tormented world of ours...

...who would fall upon your dinner
like ravening wolves.

I'm sorry.

"Waste not, want not"...

I thought they'd drummed that into you,
in the orphanage.

That young man, Jack...

Do you know...
he's been a godsend.

Of course, he may well be greedy...

...taking 20% of the fees
that are due to me...


But then, on the other hand,
what would I have done without him?

Gee...did you say 20%?

Are you not well, child?

I'm sorry.

Yes, ma'am...I mean no...

Then, eat!

If he's taking 20%...

I don't feel like it...

Lucy...what is a companion
supposed to do?..

Be morose? Be silent?
Be inattentive?

At long last.

Hey, Jack...
Glad you could make it!

It's good news...I just put all...

You're LATE, Mr Dolan.

I've just been on the phone
to Los Angeles...

They're 3 hours behind us here,
you know...

...and the guy I had to get to
wasn't available until 5 o'clock...HIS time.


Paramount Studios.

We were not prepared to wait...
so we began.

Who did you say?

I got you another $1,000.

That makes another $200 for you, right?

But that's nearly...

It's over £200!

Good heavens above,
how did you do it?

All you have to do
is endorse the "Alice" movie.

Now, why didn't I think of that?

Could I get a cup of coffee
and a hot pastrami, on rye.

The "Alice in Wonderland" film.

You get yourself photographed
with the stars...

...and you tell the world
that you've seen it all...

The adventures of Alice exactly
as you pictured them when you were a little girl...

...when Lewis Carroll
told you the story.

But what if it isn't like that...
this talking picture?

What do you care?

A love of money
is the root of all evil.

Maybe...but the lack of it is worse
than the love of it.

"Amen" to that.

Say something, Lucy.

Say what?

Don't expect HER to speak...
She will not condescend to that...

Lucy has suddenly decided to be
a petulant and ungrateful young woman!

Shut up!

WHAT did you say?!

I said SHUT UP!

Shut up, shut up, shut up!..
You nasty old cow!

Let's take no notice...
I shall ignore it...

The poor child must have
eaten something disagreeable.

We shall ignore it...

Endeavour to ignore it.

I think I ought to see if she's alright.

Certainly not!..

I'm going to find Lucy.

If I behaved like that...

My mother would've...

Your mother would've...what?

I'm sorry...

Your mother...

What about her?

I have got a very important phone call,
I've got to make...

It's just across the road...
I won't be long...OK?


Come on...you're getting soaked.

There's no point...

I've lost my job...

That's certain...

What's the matter with me?

Well, there's nothing
the matter with you.

You're just not a doormat...
that's all.

It's about time
you stood up for yourself.

Why did you come out?

Did SHE send you?


She didn't.

There's no money in it, is there?


If you offend HER...

...all your hard work
will've been wasted, won't it?

And isn't that the most
important thing in your life?

Don't you put that


You betcha!

Look at her!

The perfect Victorian.

I don't want to hurt her.

I couldn't.

We don't have to tell her ANYTHING yet.

It'll keep.

There you are.

- Mrs Hargreaves...
- Lucy, dear...

I've been sitting here
examining my life...

..and I've come to the conclusion...

...I have not behaved properly
to you this evening...

But that's when someone
apologises to you, my dear...

...it is usually considered politic,
not to interrupt.

3 of those 'Knickerbocker Glories'...
if you please.

Right away, madame!

I've been turning those days
over and over in my mind...

...since I've been here.

Mrs Hargreaves...

Did we wake you up?

Well, what are YOU doing here?

It's after 2 in the morning!

I telephoned Mr Dolan.


What's the matter?

Has something happened?

Mr Dolan is being very kind...

He's helping me.

Mrs Hargreaves is worried about her speech
at the degree ceremony tomorrow.

She didn't really want
to talk about Lewis Carroll.

Or Dodgson, I should say.

May I be part
of this conversation?

I can't seem to sleep
for some reason.

That's because you're in love.

How did YOU know?

Because it's an emotion
which has always frightened me.

But I can always recognise it
when I see it.

I do so love to hear you laugh,
little Alice.

Do you, Mr Dodgson?

It's the nicest sound I know.


I hope you'll always remember
our little moments together...

My dear.

Time can blot out so many,
many things.

I couldn't forget...
not even if I tried.

Oh, but you will.

When you grow up...
...Then perhaps.

One fine day, come to marry.

You can come to afternoon tea
with my dear husband and me

on Sunday afternoons.

Do you like your cold sandwiches,
Mr Dodgson?

Very much.



Mr Dodgson...


Is this another game?

Yes...so help me...
I'm talking in riddles.

I do so like riddles!

That's what I said
to the Mad Hatter!

Or was it the March Hare?

You must take care never
to lose your head, my dear.

Perhaps the queen...
the Queen of Hearts.

No...I meant...

Off with his head!

Don't lose YOUR head...

...with curls and a pretty smile.

Because I...

I thought we were
going to play a game.

Yes, dear.

Come along, then...

Come on then, Mr Dodgson.

I'm waiting!

Alice is waiting!

Sing me a funny song!

Twinkle, twinkle, little bat...

How I wonder what you're at...

Up above the world you fly...

Like a tea-tray in the sky.

She looks as though
she can't believe it.

She can't believe it.

Just so long as she sticks to her speech,
she'll be alright.

Ladies and gentlemen...

This afternoon we are gathered here
to celebrate the genius of Lewis Carroll...

...on this centenary of his birth.

A celebration, which Columbia University
shares, through this broadcast...

...with listeners
throughout the United States...

...Canada, England, and Europe.

A celebration most especially
and fittingly honoured...

..by the presence, the grace,
of the little girl...

...to whom Carroll told
and dedicated his story.

Alice herself.

Would you care for another scone,

I know how gigantic
you sportsmen's appetites can be.

No thank you Mrs Liddell...
I've had more than plenty already.

And what about you, Baker...?

No, thank you, ma'am...
I'm satisfied too.

Mr Dodgson?

Yes, I think I could manage
another scone.

Of course...
please help yourself.

Edith! Come away from the water,
at once.

Mama, I'm tired of sitting still.

Sitting still is good for little girls.

You want to grow up as pretty
as your sisters, don't you, Edith?

No, I don't.

It IS rather hot to sit still
and do nothing.

Father would have let the sun
make one's skin brown...

We should all look like Irish labourers!

"God ferbid, y'r Honour!"

Only tinkers need to bring the Deity
into it, Hargreaves.

You joke, Mr Dodgson!

Course I was.

"Sure you are, and all 'n all!"

Has everyone finished eating?

Then we can entertain ourselves.

Who would like to sing?..

...or to recite?

Mama, mayn't we just talk?

Why don't YOU sing, Alice?

Yes, Alice!

Not now, Lorina...later perhaps.

I'm afraid I'm no good at singing.

Come on Alice...
Silence the birds!

Perhaps she doesn't want to sing,

Mr Dodgson can tell us
a story, instead.

That would be very nice.

Yes...something out of your masterpiece.

Oh, no Lorina...
We know it all off by rote.

I read it all the time, Mr Dodgson...
it's lovely!

Would you like me to recite
the song of the Mock-Turtle?

Yes please Mr Dodgson.

Quiet, everyone.

Will you walk a little faster?"
said a whiting to a snail...

There's a porpoise close behind us
and he's treading on my tail...

See how eagerly the lobsters
and the turtles all advance...

They are waiting on the shingle...
Will you come and join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
will you join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you...

Won't you join the dance?


You can really have no notion how...

You can really have no notion how de...


I'm sorry.

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
will you join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
won't you join the dance?

Will you walk a little faster?"
said a whiting to a snail...

There's a porpoise close behind us
and he's treading on my tail...

See how eagerly the lobsters
and the turtles all advance...

They are waiting on the shingle...
Will you come and join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
will you join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
won't you join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
will you join the dance?

Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
won't you join the dance?

It was a very clever
and funny poem, Mr Dodgson.

Lastly, she pictured to herself
how this same little sister of hers...

...would, in the after-time,
be herself a grown woman...

... and how she would keep,
through all her riper years...

...the simple and loving heart
of her childhood...

...and how she would gather about her
other little children...

...perhaps even with the dream
of Wonderland of long ago...

...and how she would feel
with all their simple sorrows...

...and find a pleasure
in all their simple joys...

...remembering her own child-life,
and the happy summer days.

...and find a pleasure
in all their simple joys...

...remembering her own child-life,
and the happy summer days.

In the little verses
in the front of the story...

...Lewis Carroll...
that is the Rev. Charles Dodgson...

"Alice, a childish story take...

...and with a gentle hand

In memory's mystic band.

Like pilgrims with
a wreath of flowers...

pluck'd in a far-off land.

At the time I was too young
to see the gift whole.

To see it for what it was...

To acknowledge the love...

that had given it birth...

But I see it now.

At long, long last.

Thank you...

Mr Dodgson.

Thank you.

What is his sorrow?

Agh!..It's all his fancy, that!

He has nae got any sorrow.

Oh, for God's sake, shut up!

Subtitles by FatPlank for KG