Back Street (1941) - full transcript

Pretty Rae Smith and handsome Walter Saxel meet, fall in love and make plans to marry. Unfortunately, their marriage plans get sabotaged when a jealous beau makes Rae miss the ceremony. The two meet many years later in New York, only now Walter is married. Refusing to be shut out of his life, Rae agrees to be Walter's mistress. - stop by if you're interested in the nutritional composition of food
(rousing fanfare)

(dramatic orchestral music)

(sentimental music)

(lively marching music)

(horn honks)

(motor backfires)

(crowd laughs)

[Onlooker] Get a horse!

And that'll be 17.50 for the music

and two dollars and a half for the push.

You wouldn't take the
machine instead, would you?

(crowd laughs)

Don't pay any attention to him.

He's just like everybody
else in this town.

The same doggone thing,
the wire to the sparker.

I made a fine laughingstock
out of you too,

getting you to dress up.

No, don't you worry about
that. I like to dress up.

I wouldn't blame you a
bit if you were all put out.

- But I'm not put out.
- You couldn't help it.

Anyway, I like to do things
just for the excitement.

Guess I'll be getting all my excitement

from bicycles from now on.

(chuckles) No, you won't.

At least I can make a living at that.

What's the fun of just making a living?

Maybe if I just let this wire hang loose

instead of tacking it along the frame.

Aw, that's no good either.

Then if it swings against the motor-

- I thought you were going
to stick to bicycles.

- Ray?
- Mm-hmm?

Why don't you marry me

and give me something else to worry about?

Now, that sends me
right home to the store.

Oh, no.

I didn't mean to ask you again.
It just kinda slipped out.

One of these days I'd
like to say yes to you,

just to see what you'd do.

Why don't you?

Oh, you'd be sorry if I did.

No, Curt, if I ever do fall in love,

it'd have to be all the way or nothing.

That's the way I am.

I pity the poor man.

Oh, Ray?

You're going to feel awfully silly

when I remind you of these
things the day we get married.

(Ray laughs)


I had the most wonderful ride.

You looked like a queen

with all those men in uniform pushing you.

Haven't you tallied the buttons yet?

No, we haven't.

Things would go a whole lot
faster for us, Fredda dear,

if three pairs of busy hands
had been doing their duty.

I was only gone an hour.

Of course, I'm only
Ray's stepmother, Fredda.

I don't expect her to pay
any attention to what I say.

Two cards of green, two
of peach, one of white.

We need another dozen white.

You put them away and I'll call them.

Oh, Mother.

You didn't give Ray that
message from the salesman.

- What salesman?
- Oh, that Mr. Porter.

Telephoned and said that he
had a big bargain for you.

That must be the new silk braid.

[Fredda] Yes, that was it.

Of course, you'll have
to go over to the hotel

and meet him there if you want to see it.

Yes, I'd better go then.

Well, then we can
finish the stock tomorrow.

We'll go right on with our work, Fredda,

and let your stepsister go
on over to her sample room

and waste her time with a
lot of traveling drummers.

They're friends of mine.

Birds of a feather flock together.

People are judged by
the company they keep.

They're a whole lot better
company than anybody here.

At least they don't whine
and complain all day.

I'm going over to meet Ed Porter
and whoever else is there,

and I'm going to sit
around and talk to them.

And if you think you're
missing something, Mrs. Smith,

why, just put on your hat and come along.

Might make you a little bit more human.

Oh no, Mr. Mason. Oh
no, our price is not high.

Now, I don't want to contact
you, but you must remember,

that garment is made with whalebone stays.

And whalebone doesn't
grow on trees, Mr. Mason.

Do you know what we have
to do to get whalebone?

- No.
- We have to send sturdy men

in sailing vessels to the Arctic Circle,

where the weather is
100 degrees below zero,

and there they sit, on the ice,

waiting for a whale to go
by, and they harpoon him.

And mister whale takes off like 60.

He pulls them through icebergs

and around the North
Pole and through Alaska.

And finally he plays out,
then they tow him in.

But they have to strip
all that blubber off

to get the whalebone.

Then spring comes and the ice breaks,

and they put the whalebone on a dogsled,

the dogsled rushes to the railroad,

the railroad rushes to us, and
we rush it into that garment.

And after all that toil
and trouble and danger,

all we asking is $37.50 a dozen,

and you think the price is too high.

It is, and I don't want any.

Of course you don't
want them, Mr. Mason,

but the women do, yessiree Bob!

And when you offer them that garment,

you can say, "The finest
merchandise in the world

to the finest women in
the world, our customers."

Not a bad slogan.

Course it isn't, and it's
yours for a small order.

"The finest merchandise in the world

to the finest women in
the world, my customers."

Very good, Mr. Porter. Send
over two dozen, assorted sizes.

- Two dozen, assorted.
- Thank you, Mr. Mason.

Thank you, sir! (Laughs)

That Mason is an easy
mark. He'll buy anything!

She just won two big pots for you.

What about my new silk braid?

If I don't come home with it,

Mrs. Smith will suspect the worse.

I'll get it for you.

When the firm hears the price
I'm making you on that braid,

they'll think I've gone daffy.

Send 'em a picture of Ray,
then they'll understand.

Probably give you another 10% off.

If you up to New York,

they might give it to you for nothing.

How about it? I'm leaving Monday.

Wanna go along for the ride?

Ray never gets on trains.

She just takes you to the
depot and waves you goodbye.

Who's talking about waving goodbye?

Ray's taking me to the train tonight.

I'm staying over until Sunday.

Why don't we both wave 'em goodbye

and then go out and
kick up our heels, huh?

You're pretty fresh for a
Johnny Newcomer, aren't you?

(laughs) I don't mean no harm.

I just want to join the lodge.

Better initiate him, Ray.

Should we tell him about life,

or let him find out for himself?

Hey, Ray. Say goodbye to the gentleman.

I want you to help me pack my trunk.

Oh, all right. Deal me out, boys.

Hey, wait a minute.

Suppose I hire myself a very fancy rig

and you and me go for a
nice moonlight drive Sunday.

Oh, wonderful!

Be sure and call for me
if there's a full moon

by twelve o'clock.


(crowd laughs)

You'll have to get up pretty
early to fool Ray Smith.

Do you? Thanks for telling me.

You want to be careful of that Harry.

I don't like the way he talked to you

about going to New York.

He was just jollying me along.

He's riffraff. Sells buggy whips.

You know what kind of a
fellow sells buggy whips.

Calling on livery
stables, hardware stores.

I'm going to New York someday.

But I'm going alone.

That's a good notion.

Do you good to get out of
Cincinnata for a couple of days.

You know, Ray, I'm gonna
spend Sunday in Dayton.

You wouldn't like to run
over to Dayton, would you?

I'll think about it.

You always say you'll think about it,

but you never do it.

You know, Ray, I'm very fond of you.

Now, here's what we could do.

We could meet on the train.

You buy your ticket as soon
as you get to the station.

No one will ever know.

Just say you could...

I didn't say anything.

Just seems like I have to slap your face

every time you come to town.

It certainly does.

I guess I'll never learn.

You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

Come on, hurry up! You're
gonna miss your train.

Maybe I just can't
take no for an answer.

That's what makes you
such a good salesman.


But I always miss out on the good deals.

Feel better now?

(Ray giggles)

(train bell clanging)

That locomotive reminds
me of your stepmother.

I bet it'd be a whole lot
more pleasant to live with.

All the old girl needs
is a bell and a cowcatcher.

It's gonna be an awfully
lonely trip to Dayton.

I don't suppose you'd change
your mind just for the...

No. I guess you wouldn't, no.

Well, I'll see you again
when I get back this way.

When will that be? This fall?

Yeah, about the second
week after Thanksgiving.

Hello, Mr. Saxel. Hello there.


How do you do?

Fine, Mr. Saxel, fine.

How's everything down in
little old New Orleans?

Very good.

What are you doing up here in Cincy?

Just stopping over a few hours.

I'm going out on the
Louisville boat tonight.

Well, don't do anything I wouldn't do.

Of course not!

Certainly glad to have seen
you again. Goodbye, Mr. Saxel.

Goodbye, Ray.


Your silk braid!


Oh, I forgot! Mr. Saxel!

I want you to meet a
friend of mine, Ray Smith.

Sweetest little peach in Cincinnata.

Show him around, Ray!
But look out for him!

He's one of those Louisiana
Frenchmen! (Laughs)

- Bye!
- Goodbye!


You haven't the faintest
idea who he is, have you?

No idea. I know his face though.

Ed Porter.

Oh yes, from Mackleson
and Fogerty in New York.

You see, I may not remember faces,

but I never forget names.

- What's mine?
- Yours?


Uh, he just told you.

- Yes, I know he did.
- (Ray giggles)

Ah, Miss-

- Smith.
- Ray Smith.

Oh, well, it's very
difficult, "Ms. Smith."

Go on, if you can't remember Smith,

you can't remember anything.

I'll try very hard never to forget it.

Thank you. Goodbye, Mr. Saxel.

Au revoir, Ms. Smith.

- Porter, sir?
- Yes.

Sorry, Mr. Saxel, but
you have my package.

Oh yes, I know. I'll carry it for you.

But you're not going my way.

Oh yes, your way is the way I'm going.

Now just a minute, Mr. Saxel-

- Well, it's all very simple.

How can I possibly have supper with you

if you go one way and I go the other?

That wouldn't be very amusing, would it?

Nobody said I was going
to have supper with you.

Oh yes, your friend, Mister...

- Porter.
- Yes'm?

The young lady wants
to know if it's all right

for her to have supper with me.

Yes or no?

Oh, yes sir!

- You agree?
- By all means, sir.

But I have work to do back at the store.


Oh, you don't want to go back to work.



(sentimental music)

Do you always take young ladies

you meet at railroad stations to supper?

Always. It's a family custom.

My father did the same thing.

And my grandfather used to
wait at the stagecoach stops,

- and same thing.
- Good evening, sir.

I wonder why I came with you.

They never know.

For three generations,
women have said to us,

"Why did I come to have
supper with you, Mr. Saxel?"

[Ray] And what have you boys told them

for three generations?

- Nothing.
- Nothing?

Well, very little.

Oh, I see.

That's part of your
family custom too, huh?

Yes, of course.

You Saxels sound very nice.

And very mysterious.

- Do we?
- Mm-hmm.

- And you Smiths?
- Oh!

Which wine will you have?

The burgundy or the bordeaux, sir?


We Smiths are an open book.

Everybody knows everything
about the Smiths.

- [Saxel] Oh no, not me.
- Tell me something about them.

Burgundy's better, but the
bordeaux is more expensive.

What's the matter?

His whole family won't
tell anybody anything,

and he won't tell me...

He gets the bordeaux and he likes it.

You mean you took your
pony into the classroom,

the way Mary took her lamb?

- I'm afraid I did.
- Why?

Well, I had seen an educated
pony once in the circus,

so I thought my pony should
have an education too.

When I was seven I wanted
to drive a steam engine.

Then I found out they
didn't have lady engineers.

We have beautiful duck a la citron

and pheasant that will melt in your mouth.

Bring it.

Were you very disappointed?

The duck or the pheasant, sir?


[Ray] No, because then I
decided I'd become a sailor.

- A sailor?
- Mm-hmm.

You see, I like storms.

I love it when it gets dark and thunders

and the lightning zigzags across the roof.

Of course, I'm scared
to death, but I love it.

How about the pheasant, sir?

Hmm? Hello.

Oh, the pheasant.

Oh, the most marvelous
pheasant I've ever eaten.

Thank you very much.

When I was a boy, I wanted to be a pirate.

[Ray] Oh, yes!

That was another thing
little girls couldn't be.

Oh, I could never have moved
from such a lovely house.

[Saxel] You see, I'm
working in a bank now.

I have to live in the city.

[Ray] I'd have stayed on the plantation

and let them have their old bank.

Ah, well. People want
different things from life.

What do you want?

- What most men want.
- Position, money, power.

Oh, power. What's that anyway?

Just to tell people what to do?

My stepmother does that all the time.

(chuckles) What do you want of life?


[Saxel] Aw. Everybody wants something.

No, I don't.

Oh, I'd like to be able
to travel a little bit.

I'd like to see all kinds of people.

I'd like to work some place
besides the store.

I don't want anything.

Well, we are very different.

Of course we are. That's
why I like to talk to you.

Go on, tell me some more things.

All right. We start when
I was eight months old.

I cut the most wonderful tooth.

(lively marching music)

Wait for the young lady, will you?

Yes, sir.

There you are.

Thank you very much, sir. Thank you.


- There's the purser.
- He'll take care of you.

Skeets! Louisville passengers.

- Good evening.
- Good evening.

Be $12. Room 101.

No, not two. Only one, for myself.

Oh, my mistake. That'll
be seven and a half for one.

Here you are.

(steam whistle blares)

You'd better hurry.

Oh, we have plenty of time.

What are you going to do
tonight after I go away?

Oh, I'll probably stand on the wharf

and watch the boat go.

Listen to the music as it
comes across the water.

Then I'll go back to the
store and do all that work

I should've been doing
for the last three hours.

Oh, you did something much
better with those hours.

You gave them to a stranger.

You're not a stranger, Walter Saxel.

You're a very old friend.

Oh, is that a silly thing to say?

No, I think it's very
nice. We are old friends.


I feel I've never known
anyone as well as I know you.

All ready to cast off, sir.



You'll have to hurry.

Oh, you sound as if
you really want me to go.

Well, there isn't another
boat until tomorrow night.

Do you have to go back to work?


I mean, I ought to, but whether
I go back to work or not,

you'd better take this boat.

I mean, I don't want you
to miss it on my account.

There goes the gangplank!

You'll never be able to get on board now.

Oh, you really can't get on board now.

I know it.

You'll have to stay over till tomorrow.

And I've never been so happy
about anything in my life.

(lively marching music)

Well, I see you stayed over another day.

Yes, but I'm afraid
I'll be leaving tomorrow.

That's what you've
been saying every day.

My guess is you'll probably stay in town

long enough to run for mayor.

(both laugh)

- Hello, Ray.
- Hello.

Looks like you're going on a picnic.

- I certainly am.
- Alone?

No, Mrs. Wilkes. Whoever heard
of going on a picnic alone?

[Mrs. Wilkes] Well, have a good time.

Thank you, I will.

Mother, can I go with Ray?

We might declare it holiday

and close up the store and all go.

Wouldn't that be a
surprise to the street

if we just locked the
door and hung up a sign?

"Closed today, everybody
gone on a picnic."

That's we ought to do.
Everybody would talk about it.

Of course, Fredda,
it's none of my business.

Now, now, Mrs. Smith.

I know all the things you're going to say

and they won't make any difference.

I promise you I'll work
every night next week.

Fredda, have I said one word?

I have no control over what Ray does.

If she wants to leave the store
in the middle of the morning

and let us stay here in the heat,

there's nothing that I can say to stop it.

Why, that's wonderful, Mrs. Smith!

You don't know how happy you're making me.

(hammer pounding)


What in the world is all this?

- I sold out the shop.
- John Casey bought it.

Whatever made you do that?

Well, I finally got convinced

I wasn't doing very good with gas buggies.

Or anything else.

- But where will you go?
- Detroit.

- Detroit, Michigan?
- Mm-hmm.

There's a fellow up there that's built

eight of these gas
buggies and they all run,

so I figured I'd better go
up there and work with him

and find out how he does it.

Why didn't you tell me?

Oh, I was going to, but...

Well, you've seemed kind of busy lately.

I can't believe it.

The street just won't seem the same.

Well, in a couple of
years I'll come back

and drop over to your shop,
and if you'll still here,

you can take me out and
show me all the changes.

And then you'll come right over here

and tell Casey he doesn't know
how to run a bicycle shop.

Oh, no.

No, I'm through with
bicycles and bicycle shops

for the rest of my life.

Well, I'll see you before you leave.


You know, you're a
different person already.

These last few days you've
changed quite a lot yourself.

I have? Why, Curt.


You don't think just because
I live under a gas buggy

I don't know what's going on?

Wish me luck?

All the luck in the world.

To both of us.

(dreamy music)

There's a cloud up there
that looks like an elephant.

Which one?

That one. You see it?


Oh, that one looks like...

What does it look like?
The one with the feathers.

I don't know.

I used to dream I was
falling from way up high.

Just before I hit the earth, I'd wake up.

Have you ever been up in a balloon?

Oh, no, but I'd love to go.

It's very cold up there.

Is it? It looks warm.

(wistful music)

Where would you like to live

if you could live anyplace
in the whole world?

I like to live wherever I am.

Places are not very different, you know.

I know, but if you could live
anyplace in the whole world

you wanted to, where would you go?

I don't know. What place do you like?

My place is on a mountain.

A very high mountain.

It hasn't any name.

- Just a mountain.
- Uh-huh.

It hasn't any houses.

Except our house.

And we live there all alone.

And once a year we come
down from the mountain

and go to New York.

Would you like to go to New York?

Well, maybe I wouldn't
like New York myself,

but we'd go to some city.

Say, New Orleans.


- Yes?
- What's wrong?


Yes, you...

You suddenly look so practical.

Oh, well.

Sometimes we have to be practical,

even when we look at the sky.

I'm leaving tomorrow.
There's a boat at noon.

I've been trying to tell
you about it all day.

Every day you didn't leave, I said,

"One day he will."

You see, they telegraphed today.

Oh, Walter, don't look so sad.

I know you can't put off
your business forever,

and I know it can't keep you forever.

It will, Ray.

[Ray] Keep you forever?


You mean you're...

Never coming back here?

That's what you do mean.

It isn't just a business
deal, is it, Walter?


My fiance.

She lives in Louisville.

Our engagement is already announced.

Well, is she...



I wish I could think of
something to say, but I can't.

I'm not going to cry.

I'm not even going to laugh.

I'm not going to do anything.

And I'm not going to let
you say another word.

Let's not say anything, now or ever.

There's that cloud.

It's changed into a swan.

By the time it changes into
something else, you'll be gone.

If I don't see you go, I
won't mind anything else.

Believe that, Walter.

I won't mind at all if I don't see you go.

It's changing now.

(footsteps rustling through hay)

No, it's too soon to tell yet.

(footsteps fade away)

This time it's going to be a ship.

(bittersweet music swells)

(lively marching music)

- May I use your telephone?
- Help yourself.

Here you are, Steve.

Hello. 1195, please.

- What was his number?
- One of them's missing until-

- How long before the boat leaves?

About 40 minutes.



Who is it, please?


Ray, I had to call you.

There's something I want to tell you,

but you've got to believe me.

Just a minute.

Is there another telephone around here?

Hey, wait a minute. We're
talking to this fella.

This is Sunday.

You wouldn't find another phone
between here and Kalamazoo.

Hello, Ray.

Ray, listen to me. Listen carefully.

[Rude Passenger] Go
ahead, we're all listening.

Hello. Ray.

Ray, I want you to come down
here right away, please.

Oh, Walter. I...

I shouldn't.

I said I shouldn't.

No, I can't hear you either.

(wistful music)

All right. I'll hurry.

Yes, right away.

Well! You finally ready
to ship out of here with us?

- Yes.
- Seven and a half.

No, two, please.

- Two?
- That's right.

[Cashier] $12.

And you might tell me
where the nearest place is

where a man could get
married if he wanted to?

Get married on board.

We picked up a minister at
Natchez, and he'll tie the knot

just as tight as anybody
in the wide world.

Oh, thank you very much.

(bright music)

Right on the dot.

When I say noon, I mean noon.
Never keep a lady waiting.

She might not wait long enough.

Harry, oh, I'm so sorry. I have-

- Where shall it be?

Down the main highway,
or the country lane,

where the little birdies
sing and the chipmunks play?

I can't go with you.

What do you mean? I can't go by myself.

Even the horse would laugh.

I'm so sorry. I've
made another engagement.

Uh-uh. First come, first serve.

Harry, I'm sorry.

I have someone waiting for
me at the boat landing.

Oh, you have?

Well, just to show you
Harry Miles is a good sport,

if you want to meet him
at the boat landing,

I'll take you to the boat landing.

All right, but I'm in an awful hurry.

You'll get there a whole lot
faster with this high-stepper

than you will in a hack.

I'll get out just aside of the wharf.

- Anything you say.
- Giddy-up, boy. (Clucks)

There she goes, gadding off again.

The ceremony will take place
in the captain's stateroom.

- Very well.
- Excuse me.

Hello. 1195, please.

Your luggage is all on board, sir.

Thank you.

- (phone ringing)
- Oh, all right, all right.

Hello? Mrs. Smith's...


Who do you want?

Ms. Ray Smith?

Well, she's not in.

Oh, you know that?

I can't understand you.

I said how long since she left there?

Oh, she left here at twelve o'clock.


Oh, she went out with one
of her drummer friends.

- But you must be mistaken.
- She was to meet me here.

Well, I saw them go off
together with my own eyes, mister.

This is not the way to the boat landing.

It's the way we're going, sister.

Harry, you stop this
horse right this minute!

(Harry laughs)

(melancholic music)

- We're miles away!
- I must've made a mistake.

You have to take me back.

No, I haven't.

I'm not Ed Porter or one
of those soft sap suckers.

You made a date with me,
and now you're keeping it.

- Harry, I told you there's-
- Everybody told me.

You're one little girl that wraps men

around your little finger.

You can do that to every other
drummer that makes this burgh

but you can't do it to me.

Harry, listen, I have
simply got to get back.

Well, go ahead. I'm not stopping you.

And I'm not taking you.

If you wanna get to the boat
landing, get out and walk.

(lively marching music)

(bright music)

I want to check this balance sheet.

Yes, Mr. Darren.

It'll be a good deal if
we can handle the issue.

A very good deal.

And why shouldn't we handle it?

There's Dawson and Company, sir.

Old Man Dawson may not want us to.

Yeah, well, he'd better
change his mind about that

unless he's ready to retire.

What backs up this preferred?

I don't know, sir.

Well, catch Mr. Saxel
before he leaves. He'll know.

Yes, sir.

Oh, Mr. Saxel. Mr. Darren
would like to see you, please.

Very well.

Yes, Uncle Felix?

Oh, Walter, this guaranteed
7% on the preferred?

Oh, I checked that.

It's a sound guarantee
on their earning reports.

Yes. Well, I just wanted to be sure.

Are you going to dine at home tonight?

I suppose so.

I would ask you to come
along and have dinner,

but Corinne is busy with some committee

and she won't be in until later.

Corinne is pretty busy
these days, isn't she?

Well, you know, she
loves being on committees.

Well, I think I'll
have dinner at the club.

Would you tell your son I'll be over

to take him to the zoo on Sunday?

Oh, he'll like that.

I'll look over those
papers again, Walter.

- It's a beautiful job.
- Thank you, Uncle Felix.

And you might tell Corrine,

if she alights long enough
in one place to listen,

that I said that her husband
was a pretty fine banker.

- Goodnight.
- Goodnight.

I beg your pardon.

But of course it is! Ray Smith.

Walter Saxel. How are you?

Well, I am a little disappointed

because you walked past me.

Oh, I didn't see you.

What are you doing in New York?

- Doing? I live here.
- No.

Yes. I have for almost five years.

Ah, it's good to see
you. You haven't changed.

Well, you have a little. It's good.

Well, I design clothes

for the biggest ready-to-wear
house in the city.

- You do?
- Mm-hmm.

And you are an important New York banker.

(laughs) Well, I'm in
the banking business.

Just around the corner, Darren and Holmes.

And I am the very
conceited father of a son.

You are?


I can't get over this.

I knew. I must've passed
this corner dozens of times.

- Well, that's funny.
- I go by here every day.

I've often wondered if
I'd ever run into you.

Well, now that you have,
let's have dinner together.

Aren't you expected at home?

Oh, no. I very often stay downtown.

- But Walter, I-
- What?

Oh, maybe you are married
and expected home yourself.

No, but I have an appointment.

Well, is it with somebody very special?

- Just a friend from-
- Oh, break it then.

Come on, please.

Once every five years is not too often

to have dinner with an old friend, is it?

(wistful music)

Tell me,

why didn't you come to the
boat landing that Sunday?


I didn't mean to ask
you that. I'm sorry.

I've been thinking about it all evening.

Of course I was very disappointed.

I think I was jealous too, after
I spoke to your stepmother.

But the minister... (chuckles)

Oh, he was furious.

Mind you, it was to be his
first wedding aboard ship.



Yes, I had everything arranged.

Ah, it was to be a big surprise for you.

But it really was a big surprise for me

when I found that you had
gone out with somebody else.

What's the matter?

Shall we go?

And so I stood there on the dock

and watched the boat until it disappeared.

If I'd only known,

everything would've been different.

Let's not talk about it.

It's just something that
might've happened and didn't.

(bright music)

[Driver] Thank you, sir.


We can't see each other again.

But I have to see you.

It's too late.

It's been five years.
We're not the same people.

You have your life, I have mine.

If only we hadn't met today.

But we did.

(car puttering past)

I'm frightened.

You mustn't be.

Aren't you?


(wistful music)

We were meant to be together, Ray.

That's why we met again.

Baseball extra! Opening day...

Here you go, sir. Thank you.

Extra! Opening day won by the Giants!

Hadley out-pitches Roughner!

Giants win opening day!
Baseball extra dish!

(bright music)

[Landlady] I can ask for
your room whenever I please.

I want it now.

[Ray] But you could've
told me this morning

instead of putting me out like this.

[Landlady] Your month
is up. I need the room.

But you can't do this,
Mrs. Miller, really.

I'm entitled to some notice.

You're entitled to no notice.

I've been watching you
two for some time now.

I'm sick and tired of it!

Good evening, Mrs. Miller.

Packed already, Ray?

Yes, I came home to find
everything packed for me.

Oh, Mrs. Miller's
kind hand at work again.

You are very thoughtful, and so charming.

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

So modest too.

Ms. Smith hates to go,
but everything changes.

No, no. Not this place.

I shall always remember the
wallpaper and the draft.

Now, don't get sentimental
or you won't be able to go.

- Oh yes, she will.
- Oh, she's very brave.

You both will have to be
brave at the time of parting.

Goodbye, charming lady.

I'll have a cab come for my things.

Please be sure they're all here.

Nothing you have that I want.

So generous too.

Come, Ray. You have to
leave this old, old friend.

You trying to pull my leg, sir?

Oh, Mrs. Miller.

For you.

Why didn't you tell me about this before?

I didn't know about it myself
until I came home tonight.

I shouldn't have come here so often.

That isn't true.

I wanted to see you as much
as you wanted to see me.

Don't worry, darling.

There must be lots places in
New York where I can live.

Should be just about here.


It really sounds very nice.
It has a skylight and a view.

Yes, here it is.

But you can't live here. It's
so far away from everything.

That's good.

All the people in the
world like Mrs. Miller,

the less we see of them, the better.

If I do say so, although I shouldn't,

that's the finest view of the
river in the neighborhood.

All you have to do is stand
on your tiptoes to see it.

Don't you think it's nice?

Very nice.

And it's so cozy in the
winter and cool in the summer.

And that kitchen. Oh,
it's a perfect jar, madam.

I'll take it.

I'll make out your receipt right away.

I knew you'd like it the minute I saw you.

What is the name?

Smith. Ray Smith.

- That's one month in advance.
- That's right.

- Here you are, Mr.
- And Mrs. Raymond Smith.

Now, if there's anything I can
do to help you get settled,

why, just ring my bell.

- Goodnight.
- Goodnight.

(pensive music)

One more Smith in the world won't hurt.

Are you comfortable, Mr. Smith?

Newspaper, Mr. Smith?

Thank you.

I'm sorry I can't put out your slippers.

But you haven't any slippers.

It would be very nice to be Mr. Smith.

I knew they would do that.

Do what?

United Banking. They've
cut their dividend rate.

Who cares?

We don't, that's right,

but at my house everybody would care.

- Even you?
- Oh, yes.

I would be very excited.

Where's my tobacco?

- Beside your chair.
- Oh.


Yes, I would be already working

on a statement for the price.

Of course, Uncle Felix would make it,

but I would have to write it.

[Ray] What would you say?

Well, that'd take
some thought, you know?

I would say, "The
dividend cut is justified.

United Banking's amortization
plan is for future..."

Well, "Against future
decreases in revenue."

Why couldn't you just
say it's a wise company

that saves up something for a rainy day?

What was that you said? A wise company-

- That saves up something for a rainy day.

- Well, that's wonderful!
- Uncle Felix will love that.

That's an inspiration.
(Ray chuckles)

What are you laughing at?

I was just wondering
what Uncle Felix would say

if he knew it had been my inspiration.

(laughs) Oh, he probably
would fire me from the bank,

and Corinne would get a divorce.

We never talked about that, have we?

No, we never have.

Do you want me to divorce Corinne?

Well, it would mean that
you would have to divorce

a lot of other things besides Corinne.

Your son.

Your career. Your whole way of life.

You wouldn't like that, would you?

Sooner or later,

you'd feel that you'd lost all
those things because of me.

Why do you say that?

I know how much you need them.

Anyway, I'm glad you asked me.

Now, what is it you're
going to tell Uncle Felix?

Oh. "It's a wise..."

- What was that?
- A wise company.

"That saves up something
for a rainy day." Excellent.

(Ed whistling an Irish jig)

Oh, what name are you looking for?

Smith. Ray Smith.

Well, that's four flights up.

Four flights?

Go on. You can afford to lose
a little weight. (Chuckles)

Speak for yourself, madam.

(both laugh)

(knock at door)

Who is it?

[Ed] Ray?

- Who is it?
- Ed Porter!


Ed Porter!

- Hello!
- Hello! Come in!

Oh, what a time I
had finding this place.

Am I glad to see you!

Oh, I haven't seen you for years!

Yes, go ahead and sit
down while I get dressed.

I won't be a minute.

Oh, go ahead, take
your time. I got all day.

Say, this is a nice place you got here.

- You like it?
- Oh, it's fine.

- Live here long?
- Oh, almost a year.

- Long as that?
- Uh-huh.

Tell me, what have you been doing?

Still Mackleson and
Fogerty's star salesman.

Only I don't like to travel
as much as I used to.

Bought a little house outside of Chicago.

Right on the lake. Swell place.

[Ray] How's the family?

Oh, Ray. You oughta see those kids.

Molly's a regular grown-up lady.

The things that kid can think up to do.

- And your wife?
- Elegant, elegant.

It's nice being a family
man. You know, settle down.

Well, it certainly seems
to agree with you all right.

Do I look better?

You always look great to me, Ray.

Say, what's this? Are you
interested in banking?

Oh, that belongs to a friend of mine.

You're going steady with
some fella, aren't you?

No, not exactly.

Yes, you are, Ray. You can't fool me.

(knock at door)

- Yes? Who is it?
- Me!

Oh! All right, Mrs. Dilling.

Here's your laundry, Mrs. Smith.

[Ray] Thank you.

I see you found the place all right.

Yes, I did.

"Mrs." Smith?

Ray? This fella you're going
around with, is he married?

Yes, he is.

Is he in love with you?

I think so.

Why doesn't he do something about it?

Because I don't want him to.

I mean, there isn't anything he can do.

He sounds very selfish to me.

No, he's not selfish.

It isn't his fault and it isn't my fault.

Ray, this isn't a way to live.

Suppose they hear about it where you work?

I quit my job.

Why did you do that?

Well, it...

I had to. You know things have been slack.

I know. He made you do it.

He wants you here waiting
for him, all the time.

All right, he does!

Well, it seems to me you're
getting all the worst of this.

It seems to me if I am,

it has nothing to do
with you or anybody else!

All right, all right, I'm butting in,

but you're missing a lot of things.

Things you oughta have!
Things you're going to want.

You won't always be young.

You can't have any friends,
because when you make friends,

they ask questions, and
when they ask you anything,

you've gotta say goodbye.

Ed, can't we talk about something else?

No, Ray. No.

This is the only sale

I ever really wanted to make in my life.

Figure it out for yourself.
Look at the arithmetic.

Today it's all right, you
think you're doing fine.

Tomorrow may not be so bad.

But how's it gonna be later on?

You're just gonna sit
around, waiting for him.

You were never the kind of a girl

who sat around and waited
for anybody in the old days.

No, Ray, this is all wrong.

What you should have is
a house in the country

and a little family and a
guy that belongs to you,

who's with you all the
time as, long as you live!

Ed, will you stop talking about things

that concern me and don't concern you?

All right, Ray, all right,

but I just don't wanna see you
make a fool out of yourself.

I'd like to see you...

No sale.

I'm sorry. I didn't mean
to make you feel badly.

It's all right.

Are you selling any of these designs?

Yeah, most of them.

Here's an idea. I have
a friend in Chicago.

He has a ready-to-wear factory

and he's really going places with it.

You'll be a sensation out there.

They never saw styles like these.

He'll advertise you, he'll-

I don't want to go to Chicago.

All right, Ray.

If you change your mind,

drop me a line at Mackleson and Fogerty's.


Goodbye, Ed.

Thank you, Arthur. And a happy New Year.

Thank you, Mr. Darren.

- Happy New Year, Arthur.
- The same to you, sir.

Well, it's too bad you're
not in Florida tonight

with Corrine and Richard.

Yes, I thought I might make it,

but there's been so much
to do with that report.


Well, this is the end of a good year,

and I hope the beginning of a better one.

What are you doing tonight?

Oh, nothing special. Probably stay home.

I just thought I'd tell you,

if there's anything you wanted,
you'd better ask for it now

because I'm going to ring
the old year out tonight

and the new year in. (Chuckles)

Oh, I think I have
everything, thank you.

I brought you a few of
these. We had some extra ones.

(whistle tweets)

(Mrs. Dilling laughs)

I just wanted to show you how it worked.

That's very sweet of you. Thank you.

- Oh, your table looks lovely.
- I hope he gets home soon.

It's too bad he had to
work so late tonight.

Yes, it is.

Well, goodbye, and happy New Year.

Goodbye, and a happy New
Year to you, Mrs. Dilling.

Happy New Year, Walter!

Happy New Year.

You didn't really think
we were going to let you

sit by yourself in the
club tonight, did you?

- Happy New Year, Walter!
- Happy New Year!

[Felix] We're the rescue party,

and this is no night to be alone.

It certainly is not.

We're really going to
paint the town tonight.

You bet we are, Walter!

Well, that's very nice of you,

but I don't want to
break in on your party.

Oh, what are you talking about, Walter?

Corinne never would forgive me

if she thought I neglected
you on New Year's Eve.

It wouldn't be a party
without you, Walter.

Certainly wouldn't,
and you can be my escort.

And mine too. Where were you off to?

You don't look like a man who planned

to spend a quiet New Year's to me.

(crowd cheering)
(horns blaring)

Operator, will you
ring this phone please?

I'm afraid it's out of order.

(phone rings)

No, it's all right. Thank you.

(crowd cheering)
(horns blaring)

♪ Should auld acquaintance be forgot ♪

♪ And never brought to mind ♪

♪ Should auld acquaintance be forgot ♪

♪ And days of auld lang syne. ♪

♪ For auld lang syne, my dear ♪

♪ For auld lang syne ♪

(clock bell strikes midnight)

♪ For old lang syne ♪

♪ We both have run around the braes ♪

♪ For old lang syne ♪

♪ We'll take a cup of kindness yet ♪

♪ For days of auld lang syne ♪

(crowd cheers)
(bright music)

Well, I think I'd better go now.

Oh, certainly not, my
boy. Sit down, please.

I've got a little present for you.

You've been working pretty hard, Walter.

No harder than you.

I don't mind you doing it.

In fact, I think it's good for you.

But hard work is no fun
unless you get a reward.

Oh, I'm not complaining.

Well, you're in line
for bigger things, Walter.

How would you like to check
up on our foreign offices

and take charge of our European business?

Oh! This is one trip I'd really like.

Well, you've got that job.

How soon could you leave for Europe?

Right away. Next week.

Well, you'd better telegraph Corinne

to come back right away,
because she's going with you.

Well, don't you think on
a business trip like this

I'd better go alone?

- I mean, for the first time?
- No.

You'll be gone six months, maybe more.

She could join me later, perhaps.

No! Either Corinne goes with
you or I send someone else.


Well, it sounds like an order.

Well, let's call it a
condition. A condition of the job.

Walter, Corinne has been
going too many places alone.

And so have you.

Now, people notice those things.

Not at first, but later on.

If there's something
you're trying to say,

I wish you'd say it.

Well, I don't have to
say everything, Walter.

But you and Corrine take this
trip, and have a good time.

(clock bell strikes three)

[Walter] Ray.


Oh, Walter. I thought you'd never come.

So did I. I tried to telephone.

I tried to get away. I tried everything.

Oh! And look at that.

- Oh, I'm so sorry.
- I doesn't matter.

I was so afraid something
awful had happened to you.

No, no! On the contrary.

Something very wonderful.

Something we must drink to.


- Tell me, what?
- Just one minute.


Now you make drink a toast

to the new partner in Darren and Holmes.

Walter, no!

Yes. That's why I'm so late.

I couldn't get away from them.

You would have been very
proud of me tonight.

I am very proud of you. Here's
all the luck in the world.

I'm in charge of all foreign business,

and I'm going to Europe
to see my branch managers.

Europe? When?

Oh, in about a week.

A week?

Yes, I probably will sail on Friday.

That is, one minute after
midnight, so it'll be Saturday.

Friday's bad luck anyway.

Yes, it is.

(laughs) Oh, now. It's only
five or six weeks, you know?

(wistful music)

I can't go with you, can I?

Oh, you don't want to
go. It's a business trip.

No, not on the same boat.

Just so I-
It's not going to be long.

I want to be wherever you are.

I don't care how long I
have to wait to see you,

if I know there's just a
chance you'll telephone

and I might see you for a moment.

I can't take you, Ray.

Corinne is going with me.

(melancholic music)

Well? Don't you think
I'm disappointed too?

You said once that all
you wanted out of life

was money and power.

Well, you're getting it.

I didn't ask for this job,
you know. They're sending me.

[Ray] Don't let them send you!

What do you want me to do?

Throw my chance out the window

just because I have to leave
New York for a few weeks?

A few weeks? You'll be gone for months!

You won't have to be alone.

You'll have your friends,
your business, another life.

But this is my job!

Of all the people on earth,

I thought you would understand that.

No, I don't want to understand it.

I just don't want you to go.

You know very well I'd
rather be here with you

than any place in the world.

I guess that's all I
wanted to hear you say.

All I need is to have you close to me.

I need you too. You believe that?

If I didn't believe it, I'd die.

(wistful music)

Happy New Year, darling.

Happy New Year.

(bright music)

(pensive music)

(whistle tweets)

(bright music)

- Good morning, Mrs. Dilling.
- Good morning.

Hot enough for you?

Oh my, this is a scorching hot day.

But I always say you
don't feel nearly so hot

if you don't think about it.

Good morning.

- Good morning.
- Good morning.

Here's one for you, ma'am.

Thank you.

She's just dying of lonesomeness.

I'm glad you brought her
a letter this morning.

That was the gas bill.

[Mrs. Dilling] Well, I
certainly envy you people

getting away from all this heat.

How long are you going to stay?

- About two months.
- It'll be cooler by then.

[Husband] Well, if it
ain't we'll stay longer.

[Mrs. Dilling] Well, have a swell time.

[Wife] We certainly will. Goodbye!

- Bye.
- Bye!

[Mrs. Dilling] Bye, Mary.

(pensive music)

Hello, operator. Beekman 7565, please.

Hello. Is this Darren and Holmes?

I wonder if you could tell me

when you expect Mr. Walter
Saxel back from Europe.

Oh. This is...

No, nevermind. It doesn't matter.

- Hello, Mrs. Dilling!
- Hello!

Well, things haven't changed a bit.

But you certainly have,
all sunburned and healthy.

And look at little Mary,
as brown as a berry.

Oh, we had the most wonderful time.

I'll tell you all about it later.

- Morning, Mrs. Dilling.
- Good morning.

That's all. Oh, good morning, ma'am.

May have something for
you on my afternoon trip.

You don't need to keep
coming down here all the time.

If there's anything for
you, I'll bring it up.

Oh, I was going out anyway.

If my phone rings, would you answer it?

- I certainly will.
- Thank you.

And if anybody wants me,
tell them I'll be right back.

I'm just going to walk
over to the grocer's.

Oh no, you're not. You're going to ride.

I don't believe it.

Neither do I.

I've done nothing but look
for you since I got in town.

Why, Curt. I'm so glad to see you.

Are you still living in Detroit?

Come here, I want to show you something.

Ever hear of the Stanward Special?

Why, yes, certainly I
have. It's advertised...


I'm the "Stan" part. "Ward"
is Mike Wardley, my partner.


Get in and I'll take
you where you're going.

So, you've become a big
automobile manufacturer.

Big enough to be entered

in the Vanderbilt Cup Race this year.

That's why I'm in New York.

Remember that parade we put on?

Will we have to be
pushed home this time too?

Well, I hope not. But
these cars do funny things.

This one isn't much like
the first one you made, is it?

Oh, it's the same car, it just grew up.

We all improve with age.

(serene waltzing music)

Curt, I haven't danced in years.

Well, it's time you started again.

You used to do a lot of
it when we were back home.

- Oh, hello, Curt!
- Oh, hello!

Where have you been hiding, boy?

Oh, just seeing the sights.

You know a lot more people
in New York than I do.

Well, the whole automobile
crowd is east for the race.

Oh, here's someone you
have to meet. Hello Dan.

Oh, hello, Curt. How are you?

Fine. I want you to meet Ray Smith.

- This is Mr. and Mrs. Williams.
- How do you do?

We hear you're showing Curt the town.

Oh, really he's been
showing me the town.

Dan here is the chairman
of our board of directors.

Won't you join us after this dance?

- Oh, well-
- Oh, we'd love to.

I never knew you were so
shy about meeting people.

You're blushing like a schoolgirl.

(crowd cheering)

(motors roar)

(motor roaring)

(crowd cheers)

Curt, you won!

Congratulations, Curt!

- That's wonderful, Curt!
- Congratulations!

Curt, old boy, this
means we're going to be

the busiest factory in Detroit.

Sure does! I'm going back
tonight to get things started.

This is no time to talk business.

Ms. Smith, you ought to
be mighty proud of him.

I am. Congratulations!

That's just for being my mascot.

I don't know how to tell you
what a lot of fun I've had.

Oh, I've had the most
wonderful time I've had in years.

Notice anything different about me?

Certainly I do. Now you're fishing.

Oh, no. No, I mean...

Remember how I used to ask you to marry me

every time we met?

I didn't do it this time.

I knew there was something I'd missed.

Well, I'm going to change my tactics.

- Really?
- Mm-hmm.

This time I'm going to do it in a letter.

I'm going to put down all the reasons

why two people who get along
like we do should be married.

And I thought you changed.

Now, I don't want any answer now.

I want you to answer the letter.

See if you can think of some reason.

Oh, Curt-

- No, no, no. You wait
till you get the letter.

Goodnight, and thanks.

Goodbye, Curt.


(wistful music)




Oh, my darling.

I've waited and waited for this,

and the day you arrive I have to be out.

Let me look at you.

No, noplace did I see anyone like you.

Oh, I thought you
were never coming home.

This Mrs. Whatshername told me

you went to the automobile race.

Yes, and I'd always planned

to run down the stairs to meet you.

Oh, I'm so glad you didn't
just sit around and wait.

I worried about that all summer.

Come and tell me about your trip.

Oh, well, I saw so many
things and met so many people,

I wouldn't know where to start.

We went everywhere.

Were you a big success?

Yes. The bank is quite happy.

Ah, it's good to be home and
see you here. I missed you.

Oh, if I'd only known
you were coming today,

I'd have been out on the
roof watching every boat

that came up the river.

Oh, you've been gone such a long time.

Much longer than I thought I would be.

But then, when we were just about to sail,

everything on the Mauritania was taken,

so we had to wait another three weeks

because we wanted to
come back on that boat.

But I waited here the whole
day the Mauritania got in.

Why, that must have been five days ago.

Monday, that's right.

Why haven't you come to see me?

Oh, you don't know.

I've been busy every
minute since we landed.

But Walter, you could've phoned.

No, really, all those
reports to make out

and meetings to attend.

And on top of that, the christening.

You know, a new baby is a big
event in the Saxel family.

A little girl. She was born in Spain.

(laughs) When we got off the
boat, she cried for hours.

What's the matter?


Well, you hear people
talk about wonderful cities,

but when you get back to New York,

you know it is the most
wonderful city in the world.

Don't you ag...

I'm not very important to
you anymore, am I, Walter?

Not very important?

Ray, what do you mean?

You once promised me that
you'd never lie or pretend.

You don't have to now.

Aren't you the one
who is pretending now?


You know you are a part of my life.

I never said you were all of it.

But I thought I was more than I am.

But we both understand
what we are to each other.

We always have.

I'm not so sure.

You are the one person in
the world I always want to see.

You are the only one I
know who makes me believe

there is something more to
living than work and ambition.

That's a lot to mean to anybody.

But it isn't enough.

Maybe it was before you
went away, but it isn't now.

What's changed you?

I don't know.

Maybe I've changed because you have.

But I haven't.

You belong in my life.

You have since that first day.

You'll always belong in it.

I'll always be outside your life.

Oh, Walter, it's not the same.

The things we shared are gone.

No, they are not!

But we can't share everything.


Wait. This is...

Look, the next time we see each other,

let's not spoil it by asking
SO many questions, hmm?

Besides, you're tired tonight, aren't you?

I'd better go.

You'll think differently
about this tomorrow.

Goodnight, darling.

Goodnight, darling.

(knock at door)

Come in.

Did you call for a telegraph boy?

[Ray] Yes. Here it is.

Better read this to you,
be sure I'll have it right.

"Curtis Stanton, Stanward
Motor Works, Detroit, Michigan.

If you are still thinking
about writing me that letter,

send it to Cincinnati.

I am going home tomorrow. Signed, Kay."

Ray. R-A-Y.

Now, Mrs. Smith, this is
real Irish linen. Irish!

(thick Irish brogue) The auld
sod is in every thread of it.

When you hold it in your hand,

you can see the Killeens
out gathering the flax

and the old women seated
in front of the peat fire

at their spinning wheels.

Fredda, do we need any Irish linen?

We ain't got rid of
what he sold us last time.

Oh, I'm not trying to
make a sale, Mrs. Smith.

Just forget about gathering the flax.

Forget all about the old
women at the spinning wheels.

Forget about everything except the price,

and you'll see I'm
trying to make you a gift

because I feel just
like one of the family.

You remind my of my
Aunt Jenny a great deal.

Oh, you'd love Aunt Jenny. She's-

- Nevermind your Aunt
Jenny. How much is it?

You're not buying it, you're
stealing it, Mrs. Smith.

Only 20 cents a yard!

Make it 16 and it's
still highway robbery.

Why, Ray Smith.

[Ray] Hello, Ed.

You're a sight for sore eyes.

Why didn't you tell me she was here?

You didn't ask me.

Well, this is Ta-ra-ra Boom-de-ay.

Here I am in Cincinnata and
little Ray Smith's in town.

I'm leaving tonight.

Fredda, if anyone should ask me,

I think it would be a
whole lot more fitting

for her to be married in her own home

instead of going off to Detroit.

Hey, are you going to be married?

Yes, I am.

Who's the lucky fellow?

Curt Stanton.

Well, that's good news.

You oughta be very happy, Mrs. Smith.

If anyone's interested in my opinion,

I think she should've
married him a long time ago.

It's a surprise to
me he waited this long.

Well, he won't have to wait much longer.

I'm leaving as soon as I pack.

Wait, I'll help you.

Well, it's a small world after all.

Just think of the many
times you came over,

helped me pack my trunks,
and took me to the train.


I've got a hunch you're
going to be very happy.

I am very happy.

Well, there's no doubt about it.

You're gonna make this Stanton fella

the best little wife in the world.

Ray, I feel as if I were taking

my own daughter off to be married.

Oh, Ed.

I mean it!

Of course, Molly's only six,

but someday I'm gonna
have to walk up the aisle

with her on my arm.

And I won't feel any prouder
than I do this minute.

I won't feel any worse either.


You feel better now?


What about that fellow in New York?

What about him?

I don't know who he
is. I don't wanna know.

But did you put the kibosh on him?


[Ed] Tell him about the wedding bells?

No, I didn't tell him anything.

Where did I put those handkerchiefs?

- Here they are.
- Oh. Thank you.

I wish I could go to the wedding.

I wish you could too.


- Thank you.
- Check your trunk sir.

Yes. Put it on the Detroit Express.

Thank you, sir.

What time's your train leave?


- Got your tickets?
- Everything, right here.

Well, we've got plenty of time.

I'll get something for you to eat.

Well, look who's here!

How are you, Mr. Saxel? Remember me?

How's everything in New Orleans?

Oh, I forgot! You're in New York now.

I've been reading some
great things about you.

Oh yes, I want you to meet
an old friend of mine.

Ms. Ray Smith. She's
on her way to Detroit.


Hello, Ray.

You know each other!

Say, I remember. I introduced you.

Right in this very depot.

Walter, what are you doing here?

I came here to see you. I
just telephoned the store.


Well, Mr. Saxel, Ms. Smith
has to catch a train.

It's been a pleasure seeing
you again. Come on, Ray.

You didn't write me, you know.

Where could I write you?

Ms. Smith is on her
way to Detroit tonight.

And trains don't wait, do they, Mr. Saxel?

Ed, please.

All right, Ray, but
somehow I feel responsible.


- Goodbye, Ray.
- Goodbye.

And thank you.

We're very old friends,
Mr. Saxel, Ray and me.

She's on her way to
marry a wonderful fellow.

I don't want her to miss that train.

No, I won't. Goodbye, Ed.

Goodbye, Mister...

You haven't the faintest
idea who he is, have you?

No. I never remember names.

Ed Porter.

Oh, yes.

(wistful music)

You heard him say

that I'm going to be married?

Yes. I didn't know.

Had I known, I wouldn't
have come. I'm sorry.

But I want to wish you all the happiness.

I'm going to be happy.

I've known him for a long time.

Even longer than I've known you.

Well, I hope he'll give you

everything you want out of life.

Yes, he will.

I'm never going to be lonely again.

I'm going to fill his whole
life, every corner of it.

He'll adore you.

You'll make a wonderful home for him.

(train bell clanging)

Oh, is that the Detroit train?

- Yes, ma'am.
- Thank you.

I've missed you, Ray.

I'll miss you more now.

Anyways, good to know that you are happy

and that you are doing a wise thing.

It isn't too late for me
to be wise, is it, Walter?

Detroit Express!

Dayton, Toledo, Detroit!

I don't know how to say goodbye,

but we have to say it and mean it.

This is the last time we're ever

going to say anything to each other.

The last time we're ever going
to think about each other.

Might've been easier if I hadn't come.

I could never go back
to just waiting, could I?

Not knowing whether I'd see
you one day or the next,

or for weeks or for months.

Could I, Walter?

[Conductor] All aboard!

Could I, Walter?

I'm not going to let you go, Ray.

[Conductor] All aboard!

And I tried so hard.

(dramatic music)
(locomotive chugging)

(steam whistle blares)

(train bell clanging)

(bright music)

[Captain] Hello, Mr. Saxel.

Oh, how are you, Captain?

It's a great honor to have you meet us.

It's a great honor to
have you sail with us, sir.

You know Mrs. Saxel?

Oh, how do you do? I'm
glad to see you again.

I'm glad to see you
again, Captain Anderson.

You know my daughter, Elizabeth?

- How are you, Captain?
- Fine, Ms. Saxel.

I can promise you a smooth
voyage this time, I hope.

And my son, Richard.

- How do you do, sir?
- How do you do?

Oh, Mr. Saxel? Could we
have a picture, please?

- Certainly.
- Hold it right there.

All right, fellas.

One more, please.

There you are. Thank you.

Mr. Saxel, I'm Blake
of the Associated News.

Oh, yes. Glad to see you again.

You know the other boys?

- How are you, Mr. Saxel?
- Most of them.

- How do you do, Mr. Saxel?
- How are you, gentlemen?

There's a story out
of Washington that says

you're going to Europe as head
of the American commission.


You're going to the south
of France first, I understand,

to make it look like a vacation,

but your real destination is Geneva.

Well, if the story comes from
Washington, it must be true.

[Reporter] Are you going to Paris to see

the American ambassador before
you go to the conference?

That's difficult to answer now.

As chairman of the financial commission,

would you care to tell us
what your policy will be

on trade agreements?

I believe, gentlemen,
that all news on that

should come from the State Department.

I really can't say anything. I'm sorry.

(foghorn bellows)

Well, there's one half of
Walter Saxel's life and...

(laughs) Here comes the other half.


Wherever you see Walter
Saxel, you see her.

I wonder if his poor wife knows.

(laughing) Oh, my dear, hardly.

Corinne Saxel thinks a woman like that

is something you read
about in a French novel.

There she is again.

Oh, so you know about her too?

I ought to. I've seen her often enough.

And you can't help hearing about her.

The second companionway to your right.

It's time somebody
did something about her.

Who's going to do it?

I am.

(sentimental music)

[Walter] Hello, Ms. Smith.

[Ray] Hello, Mr. Saxel.

[Walter] Have you had your dinner?

[Ray] Yes, in my stateroom.

[Walter] I'm afraid I won't
see much of you this trip.

Everybody on board seems to know me.

[Ray] I know.

[Walter] I'll see you as
soon as we arrive. Usual place.

[Ray] Yes, Walter.

[Walter] Goodnight.

[Ray] Goodnight.

(serene music)

It's good and hot.

How late did they keep you at
your conference last night?

Oh, till way after one o'clock.

What did you do?

Went gambling.

Don't tell me you won again.

- Uh-huh.
- You're too lucky.

- Thank you.
- Now drink it slowly.

Did you read my speech?

Yes. It's very good.

In fact, I think it's the
best one you've ever written.

You do?

Well, if you like it, I know it's good.

Are you still going to Geneva tonight?

Yes, I think I should
be there a few days ahead.

You know, rehearse my little talk

and hobnob with the diplomats.

I wish I could take you with me.

You know you can't possibly.

One little bit of gossip now

and your best chance of
your life would be gone.

Now who is being
careful? And ambitious too.

Only for you.

Same old Ray.

You never change.

That's a fine thing to say
to a gray-haired old lady.

You'll be even lovelier when it's white.

Oh, Walter.

Goodbye, darling.

As soon as I get back from Geneva,

we'll spend a whole day together.

Don't worry about me.

I shall be very happy at the casino.

Good luck.

Goodbye, darling.

(gamblers chattering)

(speaking French)

(speaking French)

(knock at door)

Come in.

I think you know who I am, Mrs. Smith.

I've known about you for years.

You follow my father and my
whole family like a shadow.

Everyone seems to know who
you are and all about you,

except my mother, and I
don't want her to know.

Please go.

I didn't come to argue with you.

I came here to warn you.

Leave us alone, Mrs. Smith.
Don't do any more to us.

Just get out of our lives.

My sister's going to be married.

If there's any talk about you now,

you'll ruin that too.

I guess I shouldn't ask you
to consider her, or myself.

We don't mean anything
to a woman like you.

Please, you must go.

Not until I know that
you'll leave us alone.

Money is all you want. I know that.

Well, I'll get it for you.
You won't lose anything.

Just get out of my father's life.


(door opens)

Hello, Richard.

What are you doing here?

I have a right to be here.

I didn't question that, my boy.

I merely asked you what
you were doing here.

You ought to know
that without asking me.

Sit down, Richard.

I want to talk to you.

Long before I married your mother,

years before you were born,

I met Ms. Smith.

(lively marching music)

And for 25 years, we've loved each other.

I suppose you're still too young to know

just how long that is,
or what it's meant to me.

But this is a corner of my
life that belongs to me alone.

You can't get into it, and
you can't force me out.

What am I supposed to do?

Forget about Mother and start cheering?

You're supposed to understand,

if you are big enough.

And if I'm not big enough?

Then you're supposed
to mind your own business

and get out!

I'll get out, but this is my business.

You've been selfish enough to
sacrifice all of us for her.

I think you're both
contemptible and rotten.

(melancholic music)

A cool glass of water?


Why did you come back from Geneva so soon?

Thank you.

I've been removed as
head of the commission.

Walter, why?

I don't know.

But it was all very official, very polite.

Did they hear about us?

Oh, I don't know.

I don't mind losing that job.

All I want to do now is rest.

Oh, Walter.

Your son,

and now your best chance.

I've cost you both of them.

Don't ever leave me, Ray.

I won't.

You know I won't.

We'll have tomorrow all to ourselves.

I'll come over in the
morning for breakfast.

Would you like that?

Darling, you look so tired.

No, no, I feel fine.

Oh, thank you.

What did Richard say before I got here?

Oh, nothing.

Nothing that matters.


Goodnight, darling.


(knock at door)

Come in.

- Bonjour, madam.
- Good morning.

- Viola, Le Journal.
- Ah, thank you.

(dramatic music)


(brooding music)

I think he wants to talk to you.

Do you want to speak to me, Dad?


What is it, Dad?


The phone.


You want me to phone someone?





Give me 2679, please.


Is this 26797.

(Walter breathing raggedly)

(somber music)



I'm here, Walter. I'm listening.


What is it, Walter?

(Walter gurgles)

Walter, I'm still here! I'm listening!



Doctor! Doctor!



[Doctor] Nurse, stethoscope.

(ominous music)

I'm sorry. He's gone.

Walter, don't leave me!

Walter, you can't! Walter, don't go!

(dramatic music)

But I do not know if it is good

for you to enter, monsieur.

Madam has let no one go in.

It's all right. I
have something for her.

I bought you a steamship ticket,

to take you back to New York.

Your stateroom is reserved
in the name of Reynolds.

That's because the reporters
might recognize your name

on the passenger list.

I didn't think you'd want to talk to them.

Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't know you were ill.

I'd better get a doctor.

(wistful music)

Your son was just here.

Walter, he was so nice to me.

Might've been my son.

Our son.

I wonder

what would've happened

if I'd met you that Sunday at the boat.

(lively marching music)

(wistful music)

(bittersweet music swells)

(ominous drums rumble)

(dramatic orchestral music)