A Friend's Betrayal (1996) - full transcript

Two childhood friends grow up. One has a family and the other has a career. One relationship may make or break a family. Paul, the teenage son, must decide what he wants for his future. While family would like to make that decision for him. Watch as all the truth unravels in this drama/ romance

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[serene music]

CINDY: How much longer?

PAUL: Almost got it.

CINDY: Our parents aren't going
to be gone all day, you know.

I'm just waiting for
the light to be perfect.


What do you think?

It's nice.

All right.

Here we go.

All right.


[phone ringing]

Um-- [giggles] Maybe
you should get that?

Nah, just let it ring.

[phone ringing]

It could-- it could be
your parents or something.



No, this is Paul.


Oh, Paul.

Hi, it's Nina, Nina Talbot.

Hey, how are you doing?

I've been better.

Is your mom around?

No, she's not.

[sighs] She's not, huh?

Hm, could you give
her a message for me?


Who was it.

It was a friend of my mom's.

Her mother just died.



Hi, sweetie.

I am so sorry to hear
about your mother.

You're late.

Well, I got here
as soon as I could.

I called a cab.

Well, you didn't
have to do that.

I didn't want
to miss my plane.

My car is right out front.

I told you, I called a cab.

So go cancel the dumb cab.

Damn it, Robert.

You were supposed to be
here half an hour ago.

I'm sorry, sweetie.

Something came up.

[sighs] Let me guess.

Karen called one of the kids?

[intercom ringing]

The meter's running, lady.

I got to go.

If you take all this--


Oh, OK, all right.


OK, you guys come look at this.


Isn't that incredible?

Come help your mother here.

Just what we needed.

- Come on, get out of here.
- Thank you.



- Uh-huh.
- Oh, man.

Put it down.


Where did you guys get that?

In an antique yard.

Isn't it incredible?
- Thanks.

You guys put this
together yourself?

Uh, me?

- Him, yes.


Uh, Nina Talbot called.



How's she doing?

Not so good.

Uh, her mother died.

[ominous music]


PAUL: Today, I guess.

Uh, she said she's catching
a flight out tonight.

She'll be here tomorrow.

Evelyn's dead.


I can't believe it.


Ladies and gentlemen,

Flight 194 from New
York's LaGuardia Airport

has arrived at gate 3.

Flight 194 from New
York's LaGuardia Airport

has arrived at gate 3.

[chuckles] You didn't
have to meet the plane.

I wasn't sure I
had the right flight.

Look at you.

Oh, Nina, I'm so sorry.

It's OK.

It's OK.

OK, we'll pick
you up about 6:30.

No, there's no need.
I've got mother's car.

No, no, no, it's no problem.

[car beeping]

[suspenseful music]



NINA: Coming.

[suspenseful music]


Uh, my mom asked
me to pick you up.



Wow, you changed.


It's been too long.

Yes, it has.

Come on in.


Oh, this is a nice place.


I'll get my stuff.


How long are you staying?

A week or two.

I have to handle
mother's affairs,

put the house on the
market, box up her things.

Ooh, that'll be hard.

All those memories.

NINA: Part of me wants to
put everything in boxes

and call Goodwill.

God, isn't that awful?

No, I know what you mean.

There's so much, it
must be overwhelming.

Paul can give you a hand.

May I?



Stuff you completely
forgot about.

Nina, how's your work going?

Yeah, mom said
you won a Grammy.


Best album cover.

That is so awesome.

Yeah, now she has
something in common

with Snoop Puppy Dog, huh?


Doggy Dogg.

And that was for, uh,
"Hibernation," right?


Do you listen to the Cage Bears?

Listen to them?

I love them!

You have any idea
what they want?

Yeah, something
with bears, obviously,

but that was about it.

ELLA: So what did you do?

[suspenseful music]

I tried about
20 things before.

Uh, nothing was
really happening.

And, finally, I just
lay down on the couch,

and I listened to the album.

Then it hit me.

It's the coolest picture.

NINA: Yeah, I liked
how it seemed to--

to capture the music.

On the surface, the songs are
really harsh and abrasive.


--there's a calm center to
them, kind of a stillness.

Well, that's what
I got out of it.


[serene music]





Come on in.

Not too messy
for a guy's room.

I know your mom, she
really put you on the spot.

I know.

Wow, these are great.

Did you take these?

PAUL: Yeah.

NINA: I know photographers
in New York who

don't do work half this good.

Oh, really?

Oh, yeah.

Yeah, the light, it's hypnotic.

Yeah, I'm, uh--

I got this thing
about the light.

I don't know, it's what draws
me in when I take a picture.

It's the light, the energy.

Well, it's wonderful.


Um, as I was saying, your
mom, she put you on the spot

down there.

And I'm sure you have better
things to do than to help

me pack boxes, so--

No, no, I'd--

I'd be happy to.



Well, good.

I could use the help.

So call me when you've
got a free afternoon.

All right.

Good night.

[somber music]

I need a drink.

I got it covered.

Good girl.

Oh, good, nice.
- OK.


Very smooth.

Very smooth.


It's a good thing
I'm not driving.

Now I know why you
live in New York.


As I recall, you're the
one who taught me to drive.



So who is this Robert?

You come with me.


Well, familiarity
always breeds contempt.

Was he a client?

Huh, worse.

A priest?


We're sick.


Oh, Nina.

With a couple of kids.


Did you find out after?

No, I knew before,
but he was separated.

[sighs] I know it's
just a matter of time,

though, before he's
going to go back.

He's crazy about his kids.

Anyway, I broke it off, and--

I know, why do I
do this to myself?

No, why?

Your father abandoned you,
your mother was a recluse.

It's a wonder you're not
more screwed up than you are.


Well, I guess I have
you to thank for that.


[uplifting music]

Yeah, you.

You've always been my rock.

My surrogate, big sister.

Oh, Abby, I'm so
sick of New York.

When I come here, I see
how you and Dennis live.

You're a perfect family.


I envy you.

Oh, come on, you
have a great life.

You have a dream career.

You-- you travel.

My last vacation was
a builder's convention

in Reno two years ago.


Yeah, Reno.

[chuckles] Oh!

Yeah, you're right,
I've made my choices.

And they've been good ones.

Most of them.

But sometimes it gets lonely.

Well, that's one
thing about having kids,

you don't get lonely.

Well, I don't really think
kids are in my blueprint.

Do you ever think
about leaving New York?

All the time.

I've got a good reputation.

I could probably live
anywhere if I stay freelance.


Yeah, the security
of a firm is tempting.

Actually, there's a
firm in San Francisco

that I've been talking to,
and they made me an offer.

You might take it?

I don't know.

I'm going to go meet
with them while I'm here.

All right.

[school bell ringing]

STUDENT 1: All right,
I'll see you in 10.

STUDENT 2: Gabby, wait up!

No, I promised one
of my mom's friends

I'd help her pack up some stuff.

[scoffs] A friend of your mom?

She's really cool.

She's a graphic designer.

She used to live in New York.

And she does like CD
covers and stuff like that.

You know that Cage Bears,
"Hibernation" album?


She did that album.

Get out of here.

I swear.

Bet she gets a--

a lot of free CDs, you know
promos, stuff like that?


Or maybe she can cut
us in on it a deal.

Think about it.

See you later, Gulliver.


Hey, Mr. Franks.

Glad I ran into you.

You got a minute?

Yeah, sure.

Did St. Hope send you next
year's course catalog yet?

Yeah, I think so.

All right.

I know you're
going premed, but--

Uh, Mr. Franks,
actually I haven't, um,

made up my mind yet.

I thought you were
pre-med all the way.

Here grab a seat.

I mean about Stanhope.


I thought, you know, with
your early acceptance

and everything.

Have you applied somewhere else?

No, I'm just--

I'm not real sure
about, uh, college.

I mean, right now.

I was thinking of maybe
taking a year off.

And do what?

I don't know.

I've just been
spending so much time

thinking about college and
Stanhope and Paul Hewitt, M.D.


I'm just not sure if
it's what I want anymore.

Did you talk to your
parents about this?

[chuckles] Yeah.

They didn't really understand.

They were pretty upset.

I bet they are.

Well, you going to Stanhope's
always been their dream.

Look, Paul, you're a smart kid.

You're going to land on your
feet no matter what you do,

but I hope you give this
some serious thought.

Stanhope's a good school.

My mom called you, didn't she?

Yeah, she did.

You always told me
to make up my own mind,

and this is my decision.

And I want you to
make the right decision.

Look, I'm sorry you
and dad had to drop

out of college, all right?

But if I go, I'm going to go--


Can I finish?

If I go, I'm going to
go because I want to go,

not because you want me to.

[sighs] Is that
what this is about?

You don't want to go
because it's what we want?

[sighs] No, that's
not what this is about.

I'm late.

I got to go.


[phone ringing]


Hello, Nina, is that you?


How did you get this number?

Nina, I have some good news.

I've been doing a
lot of thinking.

I've come to a decision.

You made a
decision, well, good.

But I told you, Robert, I don't
want to talk to you about this


I filed for divorce.

I served Caroline with
the papers yesterday.

You what?

sorry it took me so long

to come to my senses, Nina.

But now we can be
together like we planned.

That is insane.

I never said any--

[dramatic music]


I never said such a thing.

For 10 months,

it's all we talked about.

Now that I've done
it, don't back away.

Don't lose your trust in me.

I can't talk about
this right now.

And it's not a matter
of distrusting you.

I just don't want this anymore.

How can you say that?

Come on, Nina, you've always
been afraid of commitment.

I know it's scary,
but you've got to try.

I am not scared, Robert.

I'm not.

It's over.

All right?

It's over!

It's not over.

You know it is.

And if I were there right
now holding you in my arms,

you wouldn't be saying that.

I love you, Nina.

I want us to be together.

I want to spend the rest
of my life with you,

and that's what you want, too.

Well, that's just too bad.

That's just too damn bad.

Are you OK?


I'm sorry.

That's OK.

I should get dressed.

[dance music]

Oh, man!


This can't be my mom.

Oh, god.

Oh, god.

[chuckles] Yeah,
the disco years.

[chuckles] That is wild.

Yeah, she was wild.

Get out of here, really?

No, she was actually
pretty straight.

Boy, she knew where
she was headed

and why she wanted even then.

Yeah, only she never got it.

[sensual music]

No, but I guess that
sometimes knowing what you want

isn't always enough.

I don't know.

I kind of think it's dangerous
to know what you want.

I think it can cut you
off from other things.

That's true.

Life doesn't always move
in a straight progression.

And sometimes, no matter
how much you plan,

it doesn't turn out
like you pictured it.

Well, that's fine, as
long as you're open to that

and not afraid of it.

Yeah, got to
listen to the muse.

The what?


Oh, I call mine Crazy Annie.

Um, inspiration.

The voice in your
head that tells you

that things are getting
cozy and predictable,

and you got to shake
it up because boredom

is the eighth deadly sin.

[chuckles] So when that
voice starts to scream,

I've got to listen to it.

I've got to do something
fast because if I

don't, I'm going to go crazy.

And it is not going to shut up.

Well, I definitely
got one of those.


Listen to it.

It'll take you to
amazing places.



I came by to see you,
and I got a free dinner.


I was, uh--

I know.

You were helping your mom's
friend pack up some stuff.

You're such a sweetheart.

Um, Paul, I was talking
to your mom and dad.

And this whole thing about not
wanting to go away for school,

is it because of me?

What do you mean?

Are you worried about us
being so far apart next year?


No, I'm not worried about that.

I mean, even if you
do stay here next year,

I'm going to be at
UCLA, so we probably

wouldn't see each any
more often than we

would if you were at Stanhope.

What if I came
to UCLA with you?


You mean, like, go
to school there?

No, I mean come live there
in your dorm or whatever.

Living together?

What do you--

I-- I've always thought
about a career in photography.

I mean, I've got
tons of great stuff.

I can just throw together a
portfolio and make the rounds.

Sounds great, I guess.

I mean--

And there's tons
of opportunity in LA.

But, sure, I'd have to be an
apprentice for a little while,

but it's no big deal.

You're serious.


Just blow off med school?

Just like that?


I don't know.

I-- I just have this gut feeling
that once I start pre-med,

I'll, uh, just
never get out of it.

But that's what you wanted.

Is it?


[sighs] Look, Paul, whatever
you want to do is fine with me.

You know that.

[serene music]

Come here.





[uplifting music]

Since your mother
doesn't have a headstone,

I thought you might like this.


ABBY: Having you around
like this is a lot more fun

than just talking on
the phone twice a year.

WOMAN: That'd be great, ma'am.

ABBY: Oh, that's gorgeous.

Mm, this one, you think?


Abby, did you know about
the picture that Paul gave me?

Oh, yeah, I did see that.

That was so sweet.

He is such a great kid.

I think so.

I am worried about him, though.

NINA: Why?

Oh, he's scheduled to
go to Stanhope next fall.

And now he's thinking
of not going.



I don't know.


I hate you.

[giggles] Then I'm buying it.

Why don't you and Dennis
take him to the campus

and show him around?

We offered, he's
not interested.

That's too bad.

It's such a great place.

Uh, I just had a crazy idea.


Oh, no, forget it.


What if Paul went with
you when you go to San

Francisco for your meeting?

What if you showed
him the campus?

Oh, gee, I don't
know if he'll--

We would pay all
of his expenses.

And I-- I don't want to
impose, but he likes you.

No, it's not an imposition.

You know, you two seem
to speak the same language.

God knows he and I haven't
been communicating lately.

Well, I suppose I
could say an extra day.

Is this a dumb idea?


No, it's a great idea.

She's going up Friday.

And she's coming back Sunday.


Look, I know you
haven't made up your mind,

and we're OK with that.


We're just saying go, check
it out, see what you think.

You guys sound just like
Mr. Franks, you know that?

I'll go.

Go where?

What's up?

Paul's going to San
Francisco with Nina.

ELLA: San Francisco?

I'm just going to
check out the campus.

Oh, I am so jealous.



Now I want to go even more.

DENNIS: [chuckles]

I'll see you guys later.

So long.

[tram bell ringing]


Welcome, sir.

Welcome, ma'am.

I'll take that.


[uplifting music]


Thank you.

Thank you, ma'am.




Oh, how is it?

Oh, it's great.


Now come check this out.

Oh, look at this.

Champagne, pistachios, pate.

Where's the chocolate?

Oh, no.

No chocolate.

Now they have to do
better than that if they

expect me to take this job.


Oh, I got to get a move on.

See you.


[sensual music]




All right, I'm out of here.

Live it up.

You know, room
service, pay-per-view,

whatever, it's on them.

All right.

Uh, So what?

A couple hours?

Uh, well, after they
impress the hell out of me

with their offices,
they're going to take

me to dinner, so 9:00, 10:00.

Good luck.


[uplifting music]


[tram bell ringing]



There you are.


Now your basket's complete.

[chuckles] Aw!

Uh, so how did it go?


- Your meeting.
- Oh.

You know, dinner.

Good, good.

Red carpet all the way.

What can I say, they
are crazy about me.


[sensual music]

Well, I'm, uh, I'm
going to turn in, so--

Oh, yeah, sure.

No problem.
Good night.

Good night.
See you tomorrow.



Uh, yeah, just a
small finder's fee.

good night.

Good night.


All right, well, um, I
looked at this, this morning.

I was very surprised.

It seems to be a
little different.

I mean, but you authorized it?

Yeah, well, the way the light
comes in here the-- the square

corners just make it harsh.

The round corners soften it.

You can't authorize
blueprint alterations.

It's not going to
cost you another penny.

Dennis, that's not the point.

That's my vision you're
screwing with out there.

And I won't tolerate it.



Hey, it's his show.

I'm just a contractor.

Yeah, well, that doesn't
give him the right to--

Come on, the forms.


[phone ringing]



Paul, how's it going?

Oh, great, mom.

It's going really great.

you get a chance to see

the director of admissions yet?

Yeah, I saw him this morning.

We've been here most of the day.

The campus is really
beautiful, really.

Sounds like you like it.


It's amazing.

We're having a blast.

wait to hear all about it.

I love you, mom.

Yeah, you too.

Say hi to Nina for us.

PAUL (ON PHONE): All right, mom.


Your wife is so smart.

[uplifting music]

Paul Hewitt having a blast.


All right, enough.

[chuckles] OK.

Need some help?

Yeah, thanks.

PAUL: Nice.


The most important
discoveries here were done.

He's great, you know?

Wait, slow down, slow down.

Come on, come on, come on.


Nice and easy.

If you're going to
feature us, then I suppose

you should feature both of us.





NINA: I loved school, but
the one thing that I regret

was I didn't spend enough
time traveling beforehand.

And there's so much that you
learn about yourself and people

and where you want to live
that you cannot get in that

controlled institution--

Yeah, but you get to
travel a lot now, don't you?

NINA: Yeah, it's what
I love about my work.

As a matter of fact, the last
time I was here, your mom and I


[uplifting music]


It's freezing.

Let's go.
- One more.

- No.
- Come on, it's beautiful.

Come on, you're going
to run out of film.

You probably already
are out of film.

It's late.
Come on.

Let's go.

I'm so cold, OK?

Uh, wait up.

Forgot this.


- Great.
- You got it?



There's some soda in the
refrigerator if you'd like one?

No, thanks.

[sensual music]

Uh, maybe some dinner?


Actually, uh--

I'd rather just
stay here with you.

Paul, no.


[moans] Don't.




PAUL: What time is it?

It's early.

Why don't you
come back to bed?

[serene music]

You're so beautiful.


Just hold me.

Chris Skycapp,

please respond to
agent at gate 12.

Hi, welcome home.




Missed you too.

- Oh, let me get your bags.
- Oh, no.

No, I got it.
I got it.

Give you break.
How was the flight?

- What did I bring you?
- Great.

That's all they had to ask me.

Here we go.

Very cool.

I got a hat.

ABBY: Oh, a chocolate, great.

Thank you.

Oh, you're awake.

Cindy called.

But you're not going anywhere
until you tell me everything.

DENNIS: Ella, give
me that platter?


About Stanhope.

Oh, um, I liked it.

But, yesterday, you sounded
pretty fired up about it.

Did I?

[school bell ringing]

I called you last night.

Didn't you get my message?

No, sorry.

So how was your trip?

It was good.

Are you OK?

Yes, I'm fine.

Well, my parents are going
to some benefits thing,

so can you come over?



I'll see you later.

I don't know if he's
going to be accepted or not.

Hi, Cindy.

Bye, Cindy.

Oh, how was Frisco, big guy?

It was cool.

Did you check out the
strip clubs in North Beach

like I told you to?

No, man, I missed them.

Oh, man, you visit Sin
City and you act like a monk.

What's wrong with you?


ABBY: But I thought
the meeting went well.

It did, I'm just not
ready to leave New York.

So when are you going back?


Oh, that's too bad.

I got us tickets to the
Long Beach Jazz Festival.

And I was arranging
a dinner party and--

Without asking me?

I just assumed that you--

Well, I am sorry if
I messed up your plans.

So tell me about Stanhope.

You think Paul liked it?

Uh, yeah, I think he did.

ABBY: I can't tell.

He is real hard to
read these days.

NINA: Well, you know, I--

I think that he
did like it, but--


I think he's losing
interest in being a doctor.

He told you that?


It's a feeling that I have.

He's a really good photographer.

What does that have
to do with anything?

That's where his heart is.

No, it's just a hobby.

[scoffs] Yeah, and hobbies
can lead to great careers.

Look where my doodling took me.

Paul could be a really
fine photographer.

He could do anything he
set his mind to, but--

Then why not let him?

I think I know what's
best for Paul, Nina.

Maybe not.

Sometimes a parent, who is
so involved in the situation,

can't always tell what's
best for the child.

How would you know?

Did Nina say why?

She wants to get
back to New York.

When does she go?

Couple of days.

DENNIS: Well, I guess she
couldn't stay forever.

Can I be excused?

Are you going out?

I'm just going to go
to Cindy's and study.

Hey, are you all right?

Yeah, I'm fine.

- Say hi to Cindy.
- So long.

PAUL: See you.

ABBY: Weird.

[rock music]

So what should we study first?


[sighs] What?

You just don't
seem very interested.

No, I-- I don't know.

Paul, what's wrong?

I got to go.

W-- wait.

You just got here.

Yes, I'll call
you tomorrow, OK?

Where are you--

I'll call you tomorrow.

Wait a second.

Can you wait?



You shouldn't have come here.

Why are you leaving?

I want you to go home.


Look, Paul what happened
was great, but we cannot--

[sensual music]

[suspenseful music]

PAUL: Wait.

Give me a second.

Stop it.

We're going to get in trouble.

[hushed whispering]

Oh, you're driving me crazy.





- Go home, Paul.
- Mom.

ABBY: I'll talk to you later.


I'll wait for you downstairs.

Oh, god.

I'm so sorry.

You bitch!

I didn't mean
for this to happen.

It just did.
- No, don't!

Don't you dare try to
explain this to me.

I should have you arrested.

And if you see Paul again, if
you talk to him again, I will.

I swear to God, I will.

That's right.

There's only one side of
the story, Abby's side.

You don't even
know why he was here.

Get out of my way!


Is Paul upstairs?

Yes, he's in his room.

He stormed in a little while--

Abby, what's going on?



Come in.

This isn't your fault. Nina
is a very seductive woman.

She didn't seduce me, mom.

I've known her most
of my life, Paul.

I know how she operates.

Nina and I like each other.

We like spending time together.

What's wrong with that?

Everything is wrong with that.

I don't think so.

You can't stop me
from seeing her.

As long as you're living in
this house, I can, and I will.

What the hell is going on?

Where's Ella?


She's down in the
den watching TV.

What's going on?

ABBY: Paul's sleeping with Nina.


He was just over
there tonight.

Oh, for god's sake.

I think we should
call the police.

The police?

He's just a boy, Dennis.

It's statutory rape.

DENNIS: Abby, he's 18 years old.

Well, we got to do something.

Well, isn't she
going back to New York?

You're not upset
at this, are you?

Of course, I am.

Paul's sleeping with Nina.

It's shocking, it's--
it's inappropriate,

but it's not wrong, is it?

I didn't say that.

Of course, it's wrong.

He didn't want to pass up an
opportunity to get a little.

Stop it.

So what if he completely
screws up his life.

He's just doing what a
guy's got to do, right?

[door slamming]

[dramatic music]


ABBY: Where are you going?

If I can't see Nina as
long as I'm living here,

I don't want to
live here anymore.

Paul, don't you dare leave!




Gulliver, you got
to promise me you're

not going to tell anybody.

No, I promise.

PAUL: No, really.

Of course, I promise.

PAUL: [sighs] Man,
she's incredible.

I've never met anybody like her.

So, um, does she know all
kinds of tricks and stuff,

or what?

I'm just asking.

No, it's not about the sex.

I'm telling you.

So much more to it than that.

Oh, w-- wait, so what?

You're, like, in love with her?

[sighs] I don't know.

It's definitely not like
it is with Cindy, though.

So what are you going to do?

She's going back to New York.

Are you going to go with her?

I don't know.

Everything's changed.


DENNIS: Was Paul here?


Do you know where he is?

I haven't seen him
since last night.

Abby told me about last night.

Well, if you came here
to read me the Riot Act,

you can save your breath.

She already did that.

Abby has a right to be
upset, Nina, and so do I.

So be upset.

He's a kid!

He's a lot more together
than most adults I know.

What were you thinking?

I wasn't thinking, OK?

[serene music]

I spent time with
somebody who was

really terrific and
passionate and fun.

And I went with it.

You know what that's
like, Dennis, don't you?

Or have you forgotten?


No, I haven't forgotten.

Stay away from him, Nina.

Or what?

If he comes by, tell him his
mother and I want to see him.

I want to know
what's going on.

[sighs] I don't have
time to talk right now.

Why did you run out on
me like that last night?

I'm going to be
late for class.

Paul, can we just talk--

Would you just
leave me alone, OK?

[car approaching]


I was coming to look for you.

I, uh, I moved out.

I'm staying with a friend.


Look, I just want
you to know that I

don't feel bad about anything.

I-- I don't.

I mean, you're--
you're terrific.

I-- I just wanted you
to know that before you

went back to New York.

[dramatic music]

I'm not going back.

Why not?

Going back to New York
is just running away,

and I don't want to do that.

[sensual music]

I don't care what Abby or
Dennis or anybody thinks.

It's nobody's business
who I spend my time with.

And I want to spend it with you.

So what are you saying?

I'm saying you're
the sweetest, most

wonderful thing that's
happened to me in a long time.

I want us to be together.

Well, we can't stay
here, that's for sure.

Every time I open
a closet, I think

my mother's going to jump out.


So what's your place
like in New York?

Mm, it's a big loft.


You know, I heard they're, uh.

Converting old warehouses
into lofts downtown.

Maybe we could get one of those.

Yeah, well, I guess
we could take a look.

Think about it.

Like, a place with
a lot of light.

I could build a darkroom.

You make it sound so easy.

Well, it is.

Is it?

Yes, it is.



I'll show you easy.



Come on, kiddo, we're
going to be late.

Dennis, I need to talk to you.

Why don't you give us a second?

I just spoke to Gulliver.


Paul's moving in with Nina.

She's not going
back to New York.

[sighs] Well, at least they're
not running away together.

Damn it, Dennis, is
that the best you can do?

Let's be smart here.

I mean, we tried tough
love and that didn't work.

Psych 101, the more we
try to keep them apart,

the more they're going
to want to be together.

Well, what are
we supposed to do?

Stand around and do nothing
while she ruins his life?

Look, Paul's a
terrific kid, not least

because we've had
him for 18 years.

And if we've done as good
a job as I think we have,

he'll-- he'll come around.

He's not going to want to
keep playing house with her.

Well, you'd
know, wouldn't you?


He's thinking with
his crotch, Dennis.

That wipes out 18 years.

That wipes out everything.

Look at us.

Where would we be if we'd
been thinking instead

of sleeping together in 1978?

Right here, I hope,
together with two great kids.

We have a good life, Abby.

It could have been
a whole lot better.

Paul's not coming home, is he?

Well, it's kind
of complicated.

Paul and Nina care
about each other.

What's so wrong with that?

It just is, sweetheart.

You just don't understand
how complicated--

Right, because I'm a kid
and you're the adult, right?

Well, adults are supposed to
make things better, not worse.

We're not making it worse.

Well, you're not making
it better, are you?



[somber music]

Hey, there's Paul.


Oh, hey, uh.

- Oh!
- Watch it!

- Ow!
- Oh!



You told everybody.

Let go of me, man.

- You promised me.
- What?

Do you think people
weren't going to find out?

I thought this is,
like, the greatest thing

that ever happened to you.

Hey, hey, break
it up, break it up.

Both of you.

Just chill out, man.




I didn't think you'd be home.

I just came by to pick
up some extra stuff.

You're still over at Nina's?

Yeah, we're looking to
get our own place together.

Are you?

You know, uh, it's Ella's
birthday on Saturday.

We're having a party.

It would mean the world
to her if you'd come.

Is Nina invited?

I don't think your
mother would like that.

Then I can't come.

Paul, you cannot blame
her for being upset.

I mean, dammit, you're
sleeping with her best friend.

Look, she's got some old
issues to work out, but she's--

all her-- her hopes
for you, her plans.

Look, dad, I can't
live mom's life for her.

No, no, but you can
consider her feelings.

Look, I think you're making
a terrible mistake here.

You're-- you're setting
things in motion that you--

you just have no idea about.

But it is your decision, and--

and you just have to live
with the consequences.

Whatever happens,
this is your home.

Always will be.

Remember that.

Thanks, Dad.

[uplifting music]



Come on in, it's open.

Hello, Nina.

What are you doing here?

Are you surprised?

You didn't think I was going
to let you just disappear out

of my life forever, did you?

I am not part of your
life, Robert, not anymore.

Hey, listen, I
left Karen for you.

I'm divorcing her.

Well, I didn't
ask you to do that.

I thought that's
what you wanted.

[door opening]

Maybe a long time ago,
but we're way past that now.



Um, this is Robert,
an old friend.

How do you do?


[suspenseful music]

Robert and I
have some business

that we have to discuss.

You know, the night I met
you a little voice inside me

said this woman's
trouble, Robert.

You know, you should walk
away from her now and fast.

And I wish to god I had.

How old is that boy, anyway?

Do you even care?

I want you to leave.

Did he leave his
family for you?

Did you break a few more
hearts just to sweeten the pot?

You broke Karen's
heart, Robert.

And you would have broken mine.

Now get out of my house.

You're sick, Nina.



I thought you said it
was over with Robert.

It is.

You said he would
never leave his wife,

and that's why you
broke up with him.


But-- but now
he's divorcing her.


So are you guys getting
back together or what?

Of course, not.

[sighs] Well, he sure
must think so to come

all the way out here.

People believe what
they want to, Paul,

even if it isn't true.

Maybe that's what we're doing.

What do you mean?

Maybe we're just pretending
this is going to work and, uh,

it isn't.

[sensual music]

Is that pretend?

Is it?


[rock music]

What about this?

It's kind of slutty.

[scoffs] So
should I try it on?


Look, I'll be back
in a minute, OK?


Hey, Nina.

Ella, hi.

I didn't know
you shopped here.

Just browsing.

Yeah, me too.

How are you?



Listen, I'm glad I
ran into you because mom

and dad are throwing me
this, like, massive party

Saturday afternoon.

It's, like, probably
going to be really lame,

but I'd like you guys
to come, you and Paul.

Abby wouldn't like it, Ella.

No, actually I talked to her.

And she said it would be OK.


Well, yeah, I mean she's still
a little weirded out about you

and Paul, but, I mean, she
said this is only, like,

my most important birthday
in the whole world,

so she said it would be like
a cease-fire or something.

Are you sure?

Look, I was going
to call you tonight.

I'll talk to Paul.



Look, I've got
to get going, but I

guess I'll see you on Saturday.

We'll see.




What are you doing?

It's OK.

[door opening]



Oh, let me guess.

Car parts.

I've been living
out of a suitcase.

So then why don't we just
take a little trip to New York

and pick up the
rest of your stuff?

Oh, I think you
just want a free trip.



Speaking of busted,
I ran into Ella.


How is she?

She's going to
be 16 on Saturday.

And there's a party.

Yeah, I know.

Um, my dad told me.

Huh, are you going?

Mm, I don't know.

Well, Ella invited
me, I mean, us.

She said that Abby's willing
to lay down the sword,

at least for that afternoon.


So do you want to go?

I don't know.

I'm not so sure it's the best
time for a family reunion.

Well, we can't spend
the rest of our lives

avoiding my family.

Maybe this is just my
mom's way of patching

things up without losing face.

I don't know,
but you should go.

You know how much it
would mean to Ella.


No, we're in this together.

I'm not going unless
you go with me.

Let me think about it, OK?


[rock music]

[chatting, laughter]


Hi, Heather.

Hi, Karina.



Michael, what were
you doing upstairs?

Get out there.

You're just starting those now?

I love you, too.

Hurry up!



Oh, Heather, hi!

I'm so glad you came.

(SINGING) Yes, I know
what I'm talking about.

Yes, I know what
I'm talking about.

You need more than that.

Yeah, I need more, yeah.

Cindy, honey, could
you give me a hand here?

(SINGING) I can't
make it no more.

Got to get back out the door.

I didn't break it--

I need you to help me
with cake and candles.

I'm going to find, Ella.

Oh, all right.

- Pretty.
- Think we have enough of these?

ABBY: Oh, we do.



I'm talking to you.


You look like you
just saw a ghost.

I did.

Hey, happy birthday.

You came!


Oh, I missed you.

I missed you, too.


Look who's here.

I'll be damned.

You got to open this present.


I'm telling you, it's the
best one I've gotten you.

Oh, sweet heart.

I'm so glad you showed up.

Thank you.

PAUL: Uh, you're welcome.
Hey, Dad.

- Hey, pal.
- How's it going?

It's good to see you.

Good to see you, too.

DENNIS: Glad you made it.

What are you doing here?

Get the hell out of here!


Get out of here!



I invited her.

You invited her?


To humiliate me?

ELLA: No, of course, not.
Why would I?

You're not welcome here.

Not now, not ever.

I'm sorry.





Thanks a lot, Mom.

I want to talk to you.

Ella, what's going on?

I hate her.

I hate her!


Wait a sec.

I'll go get her, OK?

Stay here.

I can't believe that
bitch ruined Ella's party.

She didn't ruin anything.

You attacked her in
front of everyone.

Oh, that's right!
Take her side!

I'm taking Ella's side.

This is Ella's party.

I will not have that
woman in my house!


CINDY: Ella.



CINDY: Will you wait a second?



Ella, can you just
wait a second?


Ella, hold on.


Hey, Ella?

[dramatic music]


[breaks screeching]



[somber music]

Where's ICU?

INTERCOM): Dr. Walker,

please report to maternity.

Nurse Britt, please,
dial the operator.

Nurse Britt, please,
dial the operator.

WOMAN: I think he came
in about 20 minutes ago.


PAUL: How is she?

We don't know yet,
but they're hopeful.

INTERCOM): Dr. Hunt,

please report to
third-floor nurse's station.

MAN: I'll go down and
talk to his parents.

How's Ella?

[sighs] She's, uh,
she's going to be OK.

She bruised her collarbone
and broke one of her legs,

but, um, she was pretty lucky.

I'm-- I'm real tired.

I'm going to head upstairs.

[somber music]

What are you doing here?

We have to talk.

There's nothing to talk about.

I'm not leaving until we do.

Five minutes.


Well-- well, things have
gotten pretty screwed up,

haven't they?

What did you expect?

Not this, Abby.

I never expected any of this.

Yeah, you never meant
for this to happen.

You never do.

No, of course, not,
but that doesn't mean

that you and I shouldn't--

Tell me something, Nina.

Did you go after Paul for
the sheer perversity of it?

Or was it a chance to get
back at me for Dennis?


That summer after
my sophomore year,

you think I don't
know what happened?

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

Oh, sure you do.

I went to San Diego
for a long weekend.

And while I was gone, you
slept with my boyfriend.

Dennis told you?

No, he didn't have to.

God, I could practically smell
him on you when I got back.

I didn't think you knew.

Yeah, and you're still in
the same rut, aren't you, Nina?

Still starting affairs that
can't possibly go anywhere.

Or if they do have a future,
finding a way to ruin them.

Well, you ruined
that one for me, Abby.


By getting pregnant?

Give me a break.

Getting pregnant
changed my whole life.

You think that it's me you're
mad at, but it isn't, it's you.

You were always beating
yourself up for the great life

that you think
you missed out on.

Well, you had better
get over it and fast

or you are going to miss the
great life that you have now.

Don't you lecture
me about my life.

You don't have any sense of
my reality or anybody else's.

You do what you want,
you go where you please.

You think that makes you strong.

You don't connect
with anybody, Nina.

You're too damn selfish.

NINA: Oh, that is so unfair.

ABBY: Are you thinking
about Paul at all?

About how he's going to feel
when you get tired of him

because you will?

Yeah, you think I'm
pissed off about my life.

Yeah, maybe I am sometimes.

But I love my family,
and I love my son.

Who do you love, Nina?

That feels like
five minutes to me.


That was great.


Cooking is not my best feature.

Well, you could
have fooled me.

Close your eyes.

What for?

Just close them.

Well, I've got
something for you.

Come on, really?


I'm not going to give it to
you if you don't close them.


They're closed.

OK, you can open them.

Open it.

[sensual music]

PAUL: [sighs]

Oh, man.

I found it in a closet.

It must have been my father's.

It's beautiful.

Well, take beautiful
pictures with it.

Save some for me.

I'm going back to New York.

I have a lot of business I
have to take care of there.

And I'm already going
stir crazy here, so--

That's fine.

I'll just, uh, go back with you.




You don't want me
to go with you?

This isn't going to
work, and you know that.

No, uh, I don't.

Yeah, the past couple
of days have been hard--

And you're thinking
about moving home.

And that's where you belong.





Don't you be sorry
on my account ever.

[uplifting music]


Sweetie, be careful.

Ella, you're doing great.

DENNIS: There you go, Ella.


There you go.



Chicken soup.


Too much hospital food?

[chuckles] Yeah.

Here you go.
I made these myself.

Oh, ooh!


Right, up.
- Ooh--

- --ooh, is that hard?

DENNIS: --attam.


OK, put this back.

And it'll hurt for--

- OK.
- Better?




[door closing]

More in the car?


I'll get it.

[uplifting music]



Well, I still don't
know what I'm doing.


I want to be here with you guys.

But as far as Stanhope
goes, uh, I just don't know.


But you got to let me
figure it out on my own.

Even if I decide to do
something that you don't like.

I'll try, Paul.


ABBY: Paul.


I'm glad you're home.

Me too.



How're you feeling?

Oh, better.



NINA: I found this
among mother's effects

and I debated whether to
send it to you or not.

Remember these two?

Braces was going to
be a famous artist

and Pigtails was going to
find a cure for stomach aches.

Abby, you asked me who I love.

I won't apologize for
finding that with Paul,

but I do regret the hurt that
I caused you and your family.

Perhaps one day you
will forgive me.

Perhaps one day
we'll speak again.

I had this picture
copied and framed.

It sits on my desk.

Amazing how it
brightens the room.

Love, Nina.

[uplifting music]