Curse of the Starving Class (1994) - full transcript

This cinema version of the Sam Shepard play is set well after the mid-century. James Woods as the alcoholic farmer drives a huge beater with a rusted roof which is emblematic of the general disrepair of his farm. A lovingly tended lamb with maggots is the reverse emblem of something helpless, needy and cared for. The refrigerator is spoken to as a character, as if standing in for absent nurturing from Woods' self-centered wife. The couple have two kids who must come of age as their home is being torn apart around them and the parents pursue fantasies of "better things" offered by crook Randy Quaid. Henry Thomas as the son copes by holding on to the land and creating a poetic commentary, and the responses of his sister to the crisis become a powerful and surprising tribute to womanhood.


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Emma!

Turn that
damn thing down!

Emma!

I don't know

how you can get
any studying done

with that mess
blaring out.

Come on, cinnamon.

He ain't
sleeping with me,

and neither are you.

Good night.

I was lying on my back.

I could smell
the avocado blossoms.

I could hear the coyotes.

I could hear stock cars
squealing off down the street.

I could feel myself
lying in my bed...

My room...

This house...

This town, this state,

this country.

I could feel
this country close,

like it was
part of my bones.

I could even
feel the presence

of all the people outside
at night in the dark.

Even the sleeping people
I could feel,

even the sleeping animals--

the dogs, peacocks, bulls--

even tractors
sitting in the wetness

waiting for the sun
to come up.

I was looking up
at all my model airplanes

hanging by
their thin metal wires,

floating,
swaying very quietly,

like they were being blown
by someone's breath...

Cobwebs moving with them,

dust covering their wings,

decals peeling off
their wings.

My p-39,

my messerschmitt,

my jap zero.

I could feel myself
lying far below them like--

like I was on an ocean

and they were overhead
on reconnaissance,

floating,

scouting me,

taking pictures
of the enemy--

me...

The enemy.

I could feel
the space around me

like a big, black world,

and I was listening
like an animal,

and my listening was afraid.

It was afraid
of sound.

It was tense,

like any second,
something could invade me.

Hey, John.

See that man
over there?

Give him
a drink on me.

You never seen
anything like this.

So she takes her tassels,
puts them on--

get your ass
out of here!

Hey, listen!
Did you hear that band?

Hey, pig face,
you going to buy me
another cocktail,

or you want me
to baptize your ass
with this one?

Man's got to do
what a man's got
to do, will.

Besides, let's let
bygones be bygones.

I'm a changed man.

A changed man!

Isn't that
what will said

when he fired
your ass?

He can kiss my ass.

Kind of like that.
That's what I like there.

Weston, if you
do that again,

my daddy's going to
kick your ass.

I love it when
she talks dirty to me.

Let's hear
the one about the--

about the cat
and the rat, huh?

Dumb son of a bitch,
I've told you that story
a thousand times.

It was an eagle
and a cat.

An eagle?

And a cat.

Tate!

Hey, weston!

Game's over,
party boy.

You got
that right, boy.

Tate!

Where's that
fucked-up dirtball?

Son of a bitch
said he'd be here.

Ooh!

We're tired of looking
for your ass.

Show yourself,
you faggot
son of a bitch!

Come on
out here, son.

You're up to your ass
in debt, weston.

Time to pay
the Piper.

You don't pay up,

we'll gut you
like a pig,

you bastard
son of a bitch!

That's right, baby.
You got that right.

Where are you?

Shh!

I can smell
your ass.

You tell
that son of a bitch

he's a fucking
dead man.

Slither out here,
you scumbag.

Kind of a posthypnotic
suggestion.

Better tell him
he's a goner.

Come on out.

Come on out.

He ain't going to
get away this time.

You don't pay up,
we're going to
gut you like a pig.

Boy, we'll kill you!

What?

It won't hurt
for long, Tate.

Tate, you slippery
son of a bitch!

Bingo!

Get out of the way,
you fucking faggots!

Goddamn it!

Who are you
calling a fag?

Sure glad that ain't
my fucking car.

Weston...

You're pushing
your luck, boy.

Trying to catch me,
goddamn it!

I'm just gone
with the wind!

Yeah, take this,
you motherfucker!

...damn particular
about everything.

You can have it
or not have it!

They can kiss my ass
if they want to,

but I have the answer,
and that's it!

Goddamn, I told that kid
to fix this thing!

Can't keep
cars clean anymore.

O.K., baby!
Old weston's home!

Yeah, that's right!

Come on! Get the fucking,
goddamn door!

Damn it!

Yeah, well, you think
you can keep me out.

Well, you can't,
goddamn it!

This is
my fucking house!

Scat, you damn cat.

Kiss my ass,
you furry fucker.

Come here!

That old damn cat
and everybody else

can get into
this damn house, damn it.

Open this
goddamn door, Ella!

Damn it! Can't keep
old weston out.

Thought you were going to stop
old weston, didn't you?

Open this door, damn it!

Ella!

Wesley! Emma!

Can you
send somebody
out here now?

Ella! You open
this door, damn it!

To--to
the Tate farm.

This is my castle!
This is my home!

Ella, baby.

Now, come on.
It's weston.

Here's your old eagle,
flying on down to his nest.

Now, come on.

Damn it!

My husband's
breaking in
the house.

He's out
of his mind.

He's getting
in here now.

Sons of bitches! Ahh!

Sons of bitches,
I'm leaving.

Fuck you all.

He should be
doing that.

He's the one
who broke it down.

He's not here.

Well, just leave it
till he gets back.

He just wanted
to get in.

There's plenty
of other ways
to get into a house.

Climb through a window.

You locked
the door.

Sure, I locked it.

Told him next time
that happened,

I was locking the door
and he could sleep
in a hotel.

Well, what
did you think?

He was going
to kill you?

Smell him right
through the door.

He was drinking
that much?

Not that.

His skin.

Oh.

You want some breakfast?

No, thanks.

Well, I'm going
to have some.

It's humiliating
to have the cops
come to your house.

Makes me feel like
we're someone else.

We're not in trouble.

He's the one
who's in trouble.

Yeah, well,
you didn't have
to call the cops.

Now, I know
the first thing
you'll think

is that you've
hurt yourself.

But I want you
to know the truth,

all the facts,
before you go off

and pick up
a lot of lies.

Now, the first thing is,

you should
never go swimming
when that happens.

It can cause you
to bleed to death.

The water just sucks it
right out of you.

But, ma, the Johnsons
have a new heated pool.

You should see it.
They even got

these blue lights
around it at night,

you know,
like a fancy hotel.

I said no swimming.
That's what I meant.

This thing is no joke.

Your whole life
is changing.

You don't want to live
in ignorance, do you?

All right, then.

Now, the next thing...

Is sanitary napkins.

You don't want
to buy them

out of any old machine
in any old gas station
bathroom.

I know it says
sanitized on the package,

but they been sitting around
those places for months.

Gross.

You don't know
whose quarters
go into those machines.

All those innocent-looking
silver quarters

just spewing germs
all over the napkins.

How come they
call them napkins?

Well, I don't know.

I didn't make it up.

Somebody called
them napkins

a long time ago,
and it just stuck.

Sanitary napkins.

It's got
a funny sound,
you know,

like a hospital
or something.

You should know
that anything
you stick up in there

should be absolutely
hospital clean.

What are those things?

They're for
my demonstration.

What demonstration?

For 4-h.

You know, I'm giving
a demonstration
at the fair.

I told you
all this before.

I don't believe--

where's my chicken?

What chicken?

Oh, I forgot
you were doing that.

I thought that wasn't
for a month yet.

I just stuck it
in here yesterday, ma!

You didn't use it,
did you?

Why would I use it?

Don't start
screaming in here.

Go outside if you're
going to scream.

What are you looking at,
you goddamn hick?

That was my chicken,
and you fucking ate it!

I raised that chicken

from the Incubator
to the grave,

and you ate it!

I didn't know
it was hers.

You used it
with no consideration

for the labor involved!

I had to
feed that chicken...

Well, did she
have her name on it?

No, of course not.

Then she's got nothing
to be screaming about.

Then I had to kill it
with an ax!

And I had to
pluck every feather
on its goddamn body!

I do all this work
so you can take it
and eat it!

Ugh! I can't believe
what goes on around here.

Shut up! If you didn't
want anybody to eat it,

then you should've
put your name on it.

Yeah.
Fuck you, o.K.?

What's
all this stuff?

Her charts.

She's giving
a demonstration.

On what?

How to cut up
a chicken.

What else?

Everybody knows
how to cut up a chicken.

I know how
to cut up a chicken,
for Christ's sake!

Oh, you do?
Did you know

there's
certain bones
you have to crack

and, if you got
the anatomy right,

you're
halfway there?

It's just a chicken.

There is
no consideration!

If I had come
across a chicken
in the freezer,

I would've
asked someone first
before I ate it.

Not if you were starving!

Yeah, well,
no one is starving
in this house!

There's food on
the table right now,
so nobody's starving!

We do not belong
to the starving class!

There's no such thing
as a starving class.

There is so!
There's a starving
class of people,

and we're not
part of it!

Well, I'm hungry.

That's starving
enough for me.

You are so ignorant!

Did you hear
what she said?

Oh, my lord.

Emma.

What?

Emma, hon,
I think you better
come in here.

What kind of family
is this?

I tried to stop him,

but he wouldn't
listen.

I'm leaving.

Can't say
as I blame her.

Why not?

You can always
blame someone.

A real investment
for the future...

The future, the future.

Mr. Tate, you may not
realize it,

but there's corporations
behind me and this place here--

executive management,
people of influence,

people of importance,

people such as yourself.

Weston--may I
call you weston?--

you look like
the country-club type to me.

Am I right? Huh?

Am I right?

The clubhouse
is going to be

right over there
on that hill,

just a five iron away.

There's going
to be shopping centers,

banks, churches...

All kinds of
great things

are going to be
developed right here.

A real investment
for the future.

Oh.

Welcome home, wes.

Welcome home, wes.
Welcome home, wes.

♪ And when it seems
your darkest night ♪

♪ won't turn your day
into light ♪

♪ Just hold on

♪ you be strong

♪ about that Thorn
that's in your side ♪

♪ that constant threat
of compromise ♪

♪ just hold on

♪ you be strong

♪ 'cause decisions you make,
they count for life ♪

♪ don't be fooled
by their illusion ♪

♪ every choice you make's
a sacrifice ♪

♪ don't get caught
in the confusion ♪

Welcome home, wes...

You real piece of shit.

Call Sylvia Richards.

Offer her my sincerest
condolences

on the passing
of her husband John.

I mean Jeff.

Mr. Taylor?

Yeah?

Don't forget
your appointment, honey.

Find out how much

she wants
for the house.

I got to get me an "a."

Well, she's already
decided to leave home.

That's a beginning.

She's too young
to leave.

And get out of
that refrigerator.

You'd think
we were starving.

We're not rich.
We're not poor.

So what are we,
then?

We're somewhere
in-between.

We're going to have
some money, though,

real soon.

We'll get out
of this place

once and for all.

Where are we going?

Paris, maybe.

Wouldn't you like to go
to Paris, Europe?

No.

Oh, they have
everything there--

high art,
paintings, castles,

buildings, fancy foods.

They got all that here.

Why aren't you sensitive
like your grandfather was?

I thought you were
just like him,

but you're not,
are you?

No.

You're circumcised
just like him.

It's almost identical,
in fact.

How do you know?

He's dead.

When he was alive
is when I looked.

Don't be ridiculous.

What did you do?
Sneak into his room
or something?

We lived
in a small house.

Come on, girls.

Bawk bawk.

Come on, girls.

So where's this money
coming from, anyway?

What money?

The money that's
going to make us rich.

I'm selling
the farm.

It's not yours.

It is mine--
or was.

We got married
and mortgaged it.

You're not
telling him about it?

No.

Then it's not legal.

It's legal.

I already checked
with a lawyer.

A lawyer?

Yeah. He's very
successful.

He's a real
big shot.

He's handling
everything for me.

How are you going
to pay this big shot?

He's only taking
a small percentage.

You know, Wesley,
people like us

don't always have
a lot of choices.

You're just going to--

you're just going to
split the money with him

without telling anybody?

You could
come with me.

No. No. This is
where I live.

This is my home.
I want to make a go of it.

Some home.

You're not even
going to make enough

for a trip to Mexico
off this house.

It's infested
with termites.

This is
wonderful property
for development.

Do you have any idea
how much

land is going for
these days?

Not very much.
You're crazy.

Thousands and thousands
are being spent

every day on properties
just like this.

Who takes care
of the place, anyway?

I take
care of it!

I'm talking about
fixing it up,

making it look like
somebody lives here,

like it did
when your grandpa left it.

Somebody does
live here.

Who? Not your father.

He works on it.
I've seen him.

He waters it.

How often is that?

He comes in
and passes out

for 3 days at a time

and then disappears
for a week.

You call that work?

I'm selling.
That's all
there is to it.

He's going to kill you
when he finds out.

We'll be
dead of starvation

by the time
he comes home.

Same as it ever was.

Here, boy.

Steady. There you go.

No!

He dragged me
clear across the corral.

I told you
not to play around

with that fool horse.
He's insane.

I had
the whole trip

planned out
in my head.

I was heading
for Mexico.

How am I ever going
to get out of here?

I can't stay here
forever.

Honey, nobody's going
to stay here forever.

We're all leaving.

We are?

Yeah. We're going
to Europe.

Pops, too?

Um, no.
Probably not.

How come?

He'd like Europe,
wouldn't he?

I don't know.

You mean just you
and me and wes

are going to Europe?

Yeah.

That sounds awful.

It would be fun.

It would be
like a vacation.

It'll be the same
as it is here.

No, it wouldn't. We'd be
in a whole new place.

We'd be in Europe.

Everything else
would all be
the same.

We'd still
be the same people.

What is the matter
with you?

Why do you say
things like that?

I want to work
on a fishing boat.

You know?

Make my way
down the coast.

Stopping at all
the little towns...

Speaking Spanish.

Mexico?

I'd learn
to be a mechanic.

Oh.

You know? Work on
four-wheel drives

and transmissions...

Be a short-order
cook...

And write novels
on the side.

I can't follow
the way you talk anymore.

Well, that's good,

because
if you could,

then that would mean
you understood me.

Hello!

Anything in here?

We're not broke,
you know,

so you don't
have to hide.

I don't know where
the money goes to,

but we are not broke.

We're not part
of the starving class!

You haven't seen my chicken,
have you?

Motherfucker!

Last call. Last call.

Locking the gate. Everybody out.

Oh, damn it!

Damn it!
Goddamn it!

Hey, will!
Will, old buddy!

Hey, whoa!

Anything open up
for me yet?

For crying out loud!
Will you give me
a break?

You were
the best I had.

Then you
stuck your head
in that damn bottle.

Will, a man drinks
once in a while.

Doesn't make him
a bad person.
I've changed, anyway.

Yeah. Looks like it.

Yeah. What you are
is pitiful.

I'm not pitiful,
you son of a bitch!

I was dropping bombs
for my country!

You were out wearing
ladies lingerie!

Don't you have
any pride?

I got pride!
Here's my pride
right here.

Kiss my ass.
Kiss my chicken ass.

Oh, yeah?
Go home!

Well, look,
I just pulled up.

Yeah.
Well, don't worry.

You're going
to get a taste.

O.K.

All right.

Hello.

Is your mother home?

♪ I'm looking for something
in red ♪

♪ something that's shocking
to turn someone's head ♪

♪ strapless and sequined
and cut down to there ♪

♪ stockings and garters
and lace underwear ♪

♪ a guaranteed number
that'll knock the man dead ♪

♪ I'm looking for something
in red ♪

Who are you, anyway?

I said, who are you?

My name's Taylor.
I'm your mother's lawyer.

Is she in trouble
or something?

Beautiful piece of property.

Buildings are just waiting
to be torn down.

♪ I'm looking for something
in red ♪

♪ something that's shocking
to turn someone's head ♪

♪ strapless and sequined
and cut down to there ♪

♪ just a size larger
than I wore last year ♪

♪ a guaranteed number...

What do you want
my mother for?

I already told you.

Does she bleed?

What?

You know.

Does she have blood
coming out of her?

I do.

Marvelous house.
Marvelous.

You know what I see?
I see potential. Yeah.

Oh. You must be
the son.

Yeah, I'm the son.

I feel like I'm
on enemy territory.

You are.

I haven't felt this way
since the war.

What war?

What's the matter
with him?

Maggots.

Well, can't you
keep him outside?

He's going to spread
germs in here.

Invisible germs,

mysteriously floating
around in the air.

Tstz! Tstz!

Anything's
a potential carrier.

It does seem that if
the animal has maggots,

he shouldn't be
in the kitchen...

Near the food.

We haven't got
any food.

Well, when you do
have food,

you prepare it
in here, don't you?

My brother peed
out there on the floor

where you were standing.

God!

Do you always
talk this way
to strangers?

It's the truth. He peed
right out there on my chart.

Oh, God.
These are new boots.

You the one who's trying
to sell the house?

We're negotiating, yes.

What?

Trying to sell what,
this house?

Where are we
supposed to live?

You're leaving home.
What do you care?

Mom!

Is all this shouting
really necessary?

I wasn't expecting you
for another half-hour.

Well, I saw the car outside,
and I thought--

if I'm imposing.

Wesley, what's that thing
doing in here?

It's got maggots.

Get it out
of the kitchen.

It needs warmth.

Get it out.

Mamma, are you
selling our house?

Who told her?

Well, I'm afraid
it slipped out.

I'm not going to
discuss it now.

Just go change
your clothes.

Very nice
to have met you.

He's sullen
by nature.

Picks it up
from his father.

I see.

Why, thank you.

Ha ha ha!

You always wear
the prettiest suits.

Yeah? You like this?

Yeah.
Who's your tailor?

Ha ha ha!
Taylor's tailor.

Taylor's tailor.

I got my own tailor.
I am Taylor.

Ha ha ha!

Here.
Let me get this.

I'll move
the briefcase.

Put it back here.

There we go.

Your chariot awaits.

See you later.

I'll miss you.

Ha ha ha!

Yeah.

Got reservations.

Eat American lamb.

20 million coyotes
can't be wrong.

You know, you're lucky
this is a civilized household.

You're lucky
this isn't Africa.

You're skinny and starving,

but it makes no difference

because there's someone starving
more than you,

and their hunger
takes them outside,

with a knife.

Slit your throat
and eat you raw.

Ssst.

I got to get this
fixed someday. Damn it.

Who put these
goddamn boxes here?

God!

Damn it!

What the hell
are you doing in here?

Is this inside?

Or outside?

Even with that door out,
it's still inside, right?

Right.

So...

What the hell
are you doing in here

if this is inside?

Hello, baby!

Perfect.

Zero.

Absolutely nada!

Goose eggs!

Gone and left everything up to
the old man once again!

What's everybody hoping for
around here, a miracle?

The age of miracles is over.

No, sir.

They've been all used up.

Aah!

Oh, man!

What are you
sneaking around for?

What are you
yelling for?
There's nobody here.

You'll get yourself killed
doing that.

What's in the bag?

Artichokes.

Artichokes.

Groceries. Somebody's
got to feed this family.

Hello, baby!

So where'd you
get them?

I got them for
half-price out there
in hot Springs.

You went all the way
out there for artichokes?

Do I look like
an idiot to you?

I went out there
to look at my land.

What land?

My desert land.

Can't you see it?

Now, you stop
talking.

Everything
was all right
till you came in.

I was talking
to myself,

and everything was
all right.

I didn't know you had
any land in the desert.

Of course I do.

I got
an acre and a half
out there.

You never
told me about it.

I told your mother.
Why should I tell you?

She never told me.

Here's to Paris.

Here's to hot couture.

Whew!

Yeah.

The way I see it...

You need me.

Yeah?

I'll tell you why,
mon cherie.

Because I'm
what they call...

A winner.

I made my first mil
before I was 20.

'Course, I lost it
before I was 21.

My first wife said
I peaked too early.

But I say--

shh!

I say a kiss is worth
a thousand words.

So what kind of land
is it?

It's not what
I expected,

that's for sure.

What is it, then?

Some guy talked
a real good line,

said it was
an investment
in the future,

all kinds
of great things.

Golf courses,
shopping centers,
banks--

great things.

So I bought it.

How much?

I borrowed the money.
It wasn't real.

So you were had,
weren't you?

A real piece of shit--

just a bunch
of strings on sticks

with lizards
blowing across it.

So where's
this guy now?

What's the matter
with him?

He has maggots.

Poor little bugger.

You poor little bugger.

Huh? You poor
little bugger.

Better put some of that
blue shit on him.

That will fix him up.

You know what
I'm talking about?

Yeah. The blue shit.

Little bugger.

Yeah, I was even thinking
of selling this place.

Oh, you were?

Yeah. Don't tell
your mother, though.

I won't.

I was thinking of
buying me some land
down in Mexico.

You little bugger.

Don't forget about
the blue shit.

Can't afford
to lose any more.

Only had but 2 sets
of twins this year.

3.

3, then.

Three's more than 2,
but it's still not that much.

Hey, where are
you going?

I'm going
to hell and back, boy.

Going to hell and back.

Yep.

Hey, darling,
you want to dance?

I can't dance with you,
Wesley. I got maggots.

Maggots?
How'd you get maggots?

Picked 'em up on the farm.
Ate some bad stuff.

I'll fix you right up.
Take you inside.

Annie, honey,

get me an outside line,
will you?

Thanks.

Well, dial it, then, o.K.?

It's 856-7392.

Yeah.

Dave...

All systems go.

I don't think
that will be an issue.

No. No.
Just call him.

Yeah.

Ig...Nore...It.

Yeah. O.K.

2 hours.

Honey pie!

Do you think she's
making it with that guy?

Who, Taylor?

How should I know?

Well, I think she is.

She's after his money.

Well, he's after
our money.

Why shouldn't she
be after his?

What money?

Our potential money.

She sees him
as an easy ticket.

She doesn't want
to be stuck out here
all her life.

She should have
thought of that
a long time ago.

She can't think.
Pop can't, either.

He won't let her.

How can you think

when you're behind
the eightball
all the time?

You don't understand

what's happening
here, do you?

With what?

The house. Taylor.

He works for an agency.
It's land development.

So what?

So it's more than just
losing a house.

It's losing a country.

You make it sound like
an invasion.

It's a zombie
invasion.

Taylor's their leader.

They'll be filing through
the door soon.

Stop being
so ignorant.

Everybody knows
there's no such thing
as zombies.

Big bulldozers crashing
through the walls,

foremen with
their sleeves rolled up,

blueprints
under their arms,

cement pilings,
prefab walls--

a whole zombie city
right here.

Get your coat?

No.

Whoa! Ho ho ho!

Shit! Who the hell
was that?

Probably
looking for pops.

Assholes!

Let's get back and see
what the deal is.

Hey, asshole!

What's the matter, hon?

Nothing.

Feeling
a little guilty?

No.

You're not ready to put
that little gold ring

back on your finger
and run home to papa now,
are you?

Say, uh--

Hey, darling,
ever heard of a fella
named weston Tate?

No.
You're sure?

No, I haven't.

I'm sorry.

Because we need
to find him real bad,
darling.

I left something
in the room.

I'm going to
go get it.

I'll be back
in just a few minutes.

O.K.?

Real dream.

Well, business first
or pleasure?

Well, pleasure.

What do you think?

There you go.

Heavy elbow.
Come on, Ellis.

There you go. Yeah.

Yeah.

Me.

Now...

Here's to it.

Yeah.

Now...

Business.

What is this?

What the hell
is this?

I fixed the door.

What was the matter
with the old one?

You broke it down.

My laundry done yet?

She didn't
come back yet.

Who didn't?

Mamma.

Well, it's been
all night.

Hasn't the sun
rised and falled

on this miserable planet?

Yes, sir.

Where's she been?

She went
with a lawyer.

A what?

Some guy named...

Named Taylor.

Taylor.

A lawyer.

Taylor.

Yeah, Taylor.

And you knew?

I thought she'd
be back by now.

You want
to sit down, pop?

What's that smell
in here?

Artichokes.

Artichokes?

What happened to
that goddamn sheep
you had in here?

Is that what
you were building,

a damn barn
for this sheep?

I told you
what I was doing.

I was fixing
the door.

She didn't do
any of this.

None of it.

It's the same
as it was before!

I'll do it.

No! It's not your job!
It's her job!

Goddamn it!

What does she do
around here, anyway?

Do you know?

No.

What do you think
of this place?

What, the house?

The whole fandango.

The orchard...

The sky...

The air.

It's all right.
It's a farm.

What do you think
of it?

I wouldn't sell it.

Wouldn't sell it.

It's not yours
to sell, is it?

Well, I know, but...

I wouldn't if it was.

What good is it?

Nothing around here
but sorrow.

It's just here,
and we're on it,

and we wouldn't be
if it got sold.

Your brother's
not much

in the brain
department, is he?

You're
the straight-a
student, aren't you?

Yes, sir.

Ahh...

What are you thinking
of doing with yourself?

I--I don't know.

You don't know?

You don't know?

Well, you best
start thinking
about something,

because
I found a buyer
for this place.

Cash on the line.

Now what's
gotten into her?

She started
her first period.

Her what?

Nah.
She's too young
for that.

She's got it.

What happens
when I'm gone?

You sit around here
talking about
your periods?

You're not
supposed to know

when your sister
has her period.

They keep
their periods
secret. Damn.

Go to sleep
so I can finish
fixing this door.

What for?
I'm selling the place!

Why build a new door?

Because I plan on
living here

right up to the point
when I leave.

Courageous outlook,
my boy.

I envy you.

You don't envy me,
do you?

No, sir.

That's because
I'm full of poison--

infected.

Yes, sir.

Does my poison
scare you?

Nope.

Good.

You're growing up.

I never saw
my old man's poison

till I was
older than you.

You know how
I recognized it?

No.

I saw it in myself!

I saw it in myself.

How do you poison
coyotes?

Strychnine.

How? Not what.
How?

You put it in the belly
of a dead lamb.

In the belly
of a dead lamb.
That's right.

Watched my old man
move around.

Watched him move
through rooms...

Out of the way
of my mother...

Away from
my brothers.

Everybody
was right there.

Nobody saw him...

But me.

He lived apart...

Right there in
the midst of things.

He lived apart.

I'm sorry.

So sorry.

I'm so sorry.

Who's the buyer?

The buyer...

The buyer.

Oh, the guy who
owns the alibi.

He's going to
give me cash,

enough to get me
down to Mexico.

Can't touch me
down there.

Who?

It's none
of your goddamn
business who!

Why is it you always
drive yourself
under my skin?

Because
we don't get along.

You're like having

some kind
of espionage spy
around.

Why are you
watching me
all the time?

Huh?

You know, you can
watch me all you want,

but you won't find
a thing.

You know,
mom's trying to sell
this place, too.

That's who
the guy is.

I'll kill her!
I'll kill them both!

Where's my gun?

I had a gun here,
a captured gun.

I took it
from a gook.

Now, take it easy!

Youtake it easy!
This is like living
in a den of vipers.

They're all
snapping at you,

trying to eat
your face off.
Goddamn it!

Shh! Get out of here.

I'm the one
brings home the food!

Where's my gun?
Goddamn it!

Huh? Look at this shit!
I can't find anything!

This is my house!
She can't take it
from me!

You understand?
It's mine!

So back off and tell her--
where's my gun?

Just go to bed,
pops.

Ha!
I'm all right here.

I feel numb.

Feels good
to be numb.

Oh, God!

You know,
we don't have
to sell.

We could fix
this place up.

Nah. It's too late
for that. I owe money.

Taylor can't buy it
without your signature.

Taylor!
God, I'll kill him!

I'll take myself
out with him
at the same time,

drive the old Cadillac
right over him

and crush his skull
like a nut.

Taylor--I forget.
What's he look like?

Crook.

What the--
yeah, that's it.

Like a crook.

I'll find him.
Your mother, too.

I'll track their asses

and shoot them
in their bed!

I'll splatter
their fucking brains

all over their
fucking magic fingers
vibrating bed.

Then I'll
slit his throat.

Where's my knife?

Ah, fuck it.

I know how to kill.

You know why?

Because I was
over there.

You learn...

How to make
an adjustment

to convince yourself
it's all right.

That's all.

Just take it
easy, pops,

get some sleep.

I'll kill him
with a brick.

I got one out back.
Goddamn it.

I'll kill him
with my bare hands!

I'll fucking...
I'll strangle him.

Damn-ass dog.

Tear him apart!

I...

I flew...

I flew...

I flew bombers...

Over nam...

Cambodia.

Oceans...

Blue oceans.

I need a drop
on my command...

Now.

Ah! Ah!

Aah!

I'll snap his neck!

Just snap it.

Oh, yeah.
I got into a mess of them old fire ants.

I hate them things.

I got a bite here.

Why, Ella Jean Tate!

Didn't I see you yesterday
over at the motel?

If I'm not mistaken...

That wasn't wes.

Uh!

Where
have you been?

Out.

Where's
your boyfriend?

What is
that smell
in here?

It's artichokes.

Pop brought them back
from the desert.

They smell
like that?

Yeah.

Went down to look

at that pathetic
piece of property,
huh?

He never told me
about it.

That's another one
of his shrewd
business deals.

Taylor?

What?

Taylor sold it
to him, right?

Don't be ridiculous.

He knew
it was worthless,

and he sold it
to him anyway,
didn't he?

Something can be
worthless today,

priceless tomorrow.

You never know
till afterward.

I ain't leaving.

We're all leaving.
I sealed the deal--

the whole enchilada,
over,

including your father.

Nah, you're too late.
You missed the boat.

He's already sold it.

What?

Where is he?

Couldn't sell
a goddamn shoestring!

He's out there
in the barn.

Get this junk
out of here!

I'm tired
of looking at it!

It ain't broken.

Well, get it
out of here!

I'm not going
to tiptoe around
here anymore.

I will not feel
like a foreigner
in my own house!

You hear me?

He's going to
kill Taylor.

Oh, he's always
going to kill
somebody.

No. He means it
this time.

He's got nothing
to lose.

He never did.

He's going to
kill you, too.

You know
what this is?

It's a curse.

I can feel it.

Goes back and back
to little...

Cells and genes.

It's tiny little
swimming things
just...

Making up
their minds
without us...

Plotting
in the womb.

Before that even--

in the air.

We pass it on.

We inherit it...

And then
pass it down.

It just
goes on and on
like that...

Without us.

Whoo!

Looky here, des.

I ain't
letting you in.

Weston...Where
is you, boy?

Oh, man!

Where is he?

Huh?

Sleeping
one off, huh?

Few too many,
I bet.

I told him
to lighten up

on them
boilermakers.

Kind of
like farting
in the wind.

Name's Ellis.

I run the alibi.

Oops!

Heh heh heh.

Hey...

What is that smell
in here?

It's artichokes.

Artichokes, huh?

Let's see.

Damn!

Smell kind of like
stale piss to me.

I never was much
on vegetables.

I'm a steak man
myself.

Meat and blood--

that's my motto.

Makes your bones
hard as ivory, boy.

Do you always
make a habit

of wandering
into people's houses

like you own them?

I do own
this place,
ma'am.

Signed, sealed,
and delivered.

Got the money
right here--

$15,000,
cash money.

$15,000?

Yep. That's
what he owes.

That's
what we made
the deal for.

Don't let him
do it, mom.

Look, boy,

I did not have to
show up here.

Boy, your father's
such a pushover.

He signed the deal
before a dollar
crossed the bar.

Now, I could have
stung him easy.

Just happens
I'm a man of honor.

Get him out of here.

Don't you
do it, boy.

I've broken
many a back
in my day.

You see,
I don't realize
my own strength.

Before you know it,
somebody gets hurt,

and I really hate
when that happens.

You can't buy
a piece of property

from an alcoholic.

They're not responsible
for their actions.

He owns it,
don't he?

No. I own it!

That's not
what he told me.

I own it!
It's already been sold!

Get the hell out!

Look, ma'am.
I got the deed
right here.

Now how do you
explain that?

Uh, uh, uh!

Who does he
owe money to?

Some pretty rough
trade.

Goddamn it!
Where is he?

He's passed out
in the barn.

Goddamn! I'd like
to wring his neck!

That's my boy.

Hey.

Hey, let me see
that deed.

Weston.

Weston.

Weston.

Aah!

I've seen
some hard cases
in my day,

but this boy,
he's dedicated,
that's for sure.

He drinks
just like
an irishman--

flat out.

Ha ha ha ha!

You say these guys
are tough.

What does he
owe them for?

He's borrowing
all the time.

He's got payments
on the car,

land in the desert.

Always got some
kind of scheme.

Weston, get up!

They'd kill him
for 15,000 bucks?

Yeah. People
like that,

you never know
what they'd do.

Maybe you could
deliver it to them.

No. I've
done my share,
even more so.

He is going to
have to do the rest.

I ain't
no messenger boy.

Well,
give it to me.

What?

I'll deliver it.

Wesley, don't you
touch that money.
It's tainted.

I'm his oldest son.You're his onlyson!

All right,
Sonny boy.

Now, don't you
go off half-cocked.

That's a lot
of spending money
for a young man.

Wesley...

Wesley,
give me the money!

It doesn't
belong to you!

There's not enough here
to live in Europe, mom.

Heh heh! You know,

I think I'll
turn this place
into a steakhouse.

Would make
a good steakhouse,
wouldn't it?

Yeah, sure.
Whatever.
It's yours.

Wesley, give me
the fucking money!

It's my dad's farm.
It's my farm.

Wesley, come back here!

Yeah, I'm going
to work this baby.

Ha ha!

I might even have
one of them eight-hole

pitch 'n putt miniature
golf courses.

Nine holes, stupid.

Full of potential.

I'm sorry.

I didn't realize
you had company.

I've got the final draft
all drawn up here.

It's too late.

What's too late?

Weston sold it.

Who is this guy?

Sold it
for $15,000.

That's impossible.

He can't sell
this piece of property.
He's incompetent.

We've already
been through that.

Look, I don't know
who the hell you are,

but I suggest you get
the hell on out of here.

This is my deal.

Who is this guy,
anyway?

He's the buyer.

Took it right out
from under you, didn't he?

Nobody takes anything out
from under me, son.

I guess we'll have to
settle this like men...

In court.

Hey, look.

I had this checked out
at city hall.

Everything's aboveboard.

Ha ha ha!

The deed's got nothing
to do with it, friend.

I'm talking
about psychological
responsibility.

Does that apply to the buying,
the same as selling?

You keep out
of this, boy.

Does that apply to...

Selling a dried-up
piece of land

in the middle
of the desert,
no water,

a 100 Miles
from the nearest
gas station?

You're trying
to divert the focus

of the situation
here now, see?

Now the point is

your husband is
psychologically
and emotionally unfit

to be responsible
for his own actions,

and, therefore,
any legal negotiations

issuing from him
cannot be held binding.

Hey, who did--

you some kind
of lawyer
or something?

Yeah.

Where the hell
do you get off

talking like that
about my house?

It's not your house.
That's what he's saying.

Are you deaf?

Listen, lady.
I sell booze.

Whole lot
of weirdness
come across my bar,

but I have never
in my life

seen anything
as crazy as this
since my wife.

Hey, des!
Let's go home.

I've got corporations
behind me,

people with vision
who can see the future.

You people think
the whole world

revolves
around your petty
little existence.

You better
take off, too,

before it all
catches up
to you.

We could have
had it all,
mon cherie.

Just wasn't
in the cards.

John, I need
two shooters.

Two shooters.
We got it.

I.D.

Yeah. Right here.

Where's Ellis?

You say, uh--

Oh, my God!

Holy shit!

Ah!

This way,
ma'am.

Yeah. She shot
the whole place up,

and just lucky
nobody was killed.

What place?

The alibi.

What alibi?

Oh, it's a little
honky-tonk

over
on the West Side.

Good God.

Well, where do
we go from here?

Well, she got to
spend the night here.

She'll get arraigned
tomorrow morning.

Go on in.

You can't fight
other people's
battles, honey.

You never win
that way.

Hey!

Where's
my goddamn money?

Oh!

Give me my money,
thief!

Oh, jeez!

Oh!

Damn it!

Get off of me,
goddamn it!

Hey, des. Let's get
the hell out of here.

Come on.

Ah! Uh!

Uh! Uh!

Ella!

You want paradise?

Tell me about it.

Telling me
about paradise?

Talk about paradise!

There was some girl
right there,

and I didn't know.
I said--

Fire, corpsman!

You fire, corpsman!

And you, my son...

Why hath thou
forsaken me?

Uh!

Oh...

Oh, God.

All I asked...

I asked at all--

and then I got nothing!

Nothing from you!

Uh!

Nothing...

Aargh!

Ahh...

Ahh! Ahh! Ahh!

Oh...

Oh!

Oh!

Ahh.

Heh.

Ohh.

What happened
to you, son?

Huh? Hey,
everything o.K.?

Same as it ever was.

Just ran
into a brick wall,
that's all.

You been drinking
or something?

Let me smell
your breath.

Ellis took
the money back.

He's a damn crook.

He got the house, too.

Igot the house,
and I'm staying.

Look at this.

I even fixed
the door, see?
Look at this.

Didn't look.

Yeah. You walked
right through it.

Watch. Perfecto.

I'm going to fix up
this whole place.

It could
be something

if only somebody
would take

some interest in it.

Got some hot coffee,
nice and fresh.

Have some.
Fix you right up.

Here.

Straighten you
right out.

Here you go.

Yeah.

There.

You know, I started
thinking...

Who is this...

Walking in the orchard
at 6:30 in the morning?

Who owns it?

You know, this farm
was your grandpa's.

I never felt it was mine,
even when it was.

You didn't?

I took off my clothes.

I walked around naked.

It was like seeing
a whole new person...

A stranger...

A stranger
on my own farm.

Then I come in here,
heh!

I find a whole mess
of groceries

in the icebox.

Surprised the hell
out of me.

I felt like
it was Christmas.

Mom bought
that stuff.

I felt it was
like coming back
to my life

after a long time
being away

and still being
welcomed back.

Then I started
doing the laundry.

Every time
I'd bend down

to pick up
somebody's clothes...

I could feel
that person

like they was
right there
in the room...

Like they were...
Still attached to you...

Like they
were part of you.

And I could just
hold them in my arms...

Forever...

So I'm thinking about
giving this farm
another shot.

Is that old tractor
still working?

I could even sell
that desert land I got.

That's a prime location.

It's only 3 hours
from hot Springs.

You know
what that's like.

Hi, darling.

Damn it.

Who put that lamb
back in here?

Well...

I got him
on his feet.

It was nip and tuck
for a while.

He had
them damn maggots

right up into
his small intestine.

Blue shit did it.

So where you been,
anyway?

Jail.

Ha! Whoa!

They finally
caught up with you,

did they?

More likely than not
they'd be after you,

but that's not it,
either.

You want some
breakfast?

You're cooking?

Yeah.

Who did
all this laundry?

I did.

So, now, where
you been, huh?

You been off
with that fancy
lawyer of yours?

I've been to jail,
like I said.

On a visit?

Yeah. Yeah, I was
visiting our daughter.

What?!

Possession of firearms,

malicious vandalism,

breaking and entering,
assault,

violation of equestrian
regulations.

There's not
many people her age

can run up a list of
credits like that.

That's for sure.

Could you?

I'm not
self-destructive.

Doesn't run on my side
of the family.

You're the only one
who doesn't have it.

See? Only us.

You know, I got it
all figured out.

See, the only way
the curse sticks

is if you let it.

Oh, so now
I'm the outsider.

You come from a different
class of people.

Nobody
raised their voice.

You sobered up
and awoke

to a brand-new
morning, didn't you?

Please.

I've been down there
all night

pulling Emma
back together.

I come back
to Dr. Jekyll.

Well, I'm not
buying it.

Would you like
some coffee?

No, I don't want
any damn coffee!

Get that
goddamn sheep out
of my kitchen!

You got
the language down,

but your inflection's
a little off.

Weston, please,
just leave it,
will you?

I'm exhausted.
I have a headache!

Try the table.

Table?

Yeah.

See? Nice and hard.

You'll sleep like
a baby,

and when you awake...

The table?

You see,
that's the trouble

with too much
damn comfort.

See?

Here.

Makes you forget
where you come from.

You think you're making
headway, but you're not.

You need a hard table,
once in a while,

just to bring you back,

make you remember
what you come from.

Goddamn hard table
to remind you!

You should have
been a preacher.

You think so?

Mm-hmm.

You have the voice.

Hmm. Wes!

Deep...

Resonating.

Breakfast's on!

Sometimes
a little comfort

isn't a bad thing.

Mmm!
Brand-new morning.

Damn it.

Now, what the hell's
going on with you?

I was yelling for you.
Didn't you hear me?

Nope.

Your breakfast is ready.
Now it's cold.

Now, what are
you doing

in them old clothes,
anyway?

I found them.

Why in the hell
would you put on
some old bum's clothes

that have been
throwed up in, pissed in,
and God knows what?

They fit.

What did you do
with that lamb?

I butchered it.

You butchered it?
What for?

'Cause
we're starving!

The fridge is
crammed full of food!

Now, look,
I know I ignored

some of the chores
around here,

but I did the best
I could.

Hell, you know...

We're not so bad off.

I have seen
real people starving,

and we're not.

You know what
your problem is?

You are too spoiled!

This place
is a paradise
for a young person!

What am I--

I'm supposed
to feel guilty?

You hear me?

I am a reborn man!

I am a whole new
person now!

They're going to
kill you.

What are you
talking about?

Who's going to
kill me?

You owe money.

Who?

Uh...I don't
remember that.

That's
behind me now.

Maybe you've
changed, but you
still owe them!

Uh-uh.

This is my house.

You signed
it over.

Shut up!

Now, see, here.

I'm going to
sell that land.

Remember?

It's phony land!

The guy's run off
to Mexico already!

What guy?

Taylor,
mom's friend.

No. This isn't right.

I was on a whole
new track here.

They moved in on us
like a creeping disease.

We didn't even notice.

I started over!

Goddamn it,
we can all start over!

Get out of here.

I ain't going to
run anymore.

Why not?
You've been running
your whole life.

'Cause this is
where I settle down!

I got nowhere to go.
This is it!

If you don't go,
they'll kill us all.

So go, get,
while you still can.

When I was in hock
up to my elbows,

I always banked
on the future.

Things couldn't
get worse,

only better.

And so everybody
wants you to buy things.

Refrigerators...

Cars, houses.

Bullshit.

They wouldn't
be so generous

if they didn't
figure you had it
coming in.

Why not go
into hock for
a couple grand

if it's all
just numbers?

And they want you
to borrow

even when they know
you can't pay.

You never hear
the sound of
change anymore.

So I just figured,

why not take
advantage of it?

I just went
along with it.

I just played ball.

Better go.

You must have
thought

I was dead
or something.

You must have thought
I was never coming back.

I never felt like
I belonged here.

You did.

You were always
going off.

You kept looking
for it out there,

trying to piece it
together.

You couldn't
figure out the jumps,

from being born
to growing up

to dropping bombs
or raising kids

to hitting bars
to this!

It all turned
on you somehow.

What you needed
was right here.

You needed us.

It's too late.

They're coming for you.

They know
where we live!

Where should I go?

Mexico.

Mexico. Yeah.

Yeah, I can start
a whole new life
down there.

You could,
uh, join me.

Maybe.

If they find
that guy and...

Get my money back--

that real-estate guy--
what was his name?

Taylor.

Ruined me twice.

Forever.

Forever.

He won't last
a day down there.

That's the first
place they'll look.

Don't eat
off the floor!

You're going to wind up
diseased just like him.

I'm hungry.

What are you doing
with his clothes on?

Hmm?

Are you
supposed to be

the big cheese now?

Daddy bear?

I tried his remedy,
but it didn't work.

He's got a remedy?

Tried taking
a hot bath,

as hot as
I could stand it.

I kept waiting for
something to happen.

Nothing happened.

So, you know,
I went outside,

and I started digging
in the garbage,

and, well, I found
his clothes.

In the garbage?

Lamb's blood.

Lamb's blood!

All down my arms!

And for a second,
I thought it was me.

I thought it was me
that was bleeding.

You're even more
disgusting than him.

Every time I put on
one of his things,

I could feel him
growing on me.

Like the changing
of the guard,

I could--
I could feel him

coming in
and me going out!

You did the best
you could.

You really did
the best you could,

and that's all you can.

I didn't do a thing.

That's what I mean.

I just grew up here.

How--how come
I'm going backwards?

Because you don't
look ahead, that's why.

You can't
just believe people

when they look you
in the eyes.

You have to look
behind them

and see what they're

standing
in front of,

what they're hiding.

Everybody's hiding.

Hey, where
are you going?

I'm out of here.

Off to find pops.

Long silence.

No sound. No sight.

Planes still hanging.

Hearts still pounding.

Then no sound.

Then mom...

Crying soft.

Soft crying.

Then no sound.

Then softly crying.

Then moving
around the house.

Then no moving.

Then softly crying.

Then stopping.

And far off,

the freeway
could be heard.

Captioning made possible by
lions gate entertainment

♪ how do I know
from what I speak? ♪

♪ so many times,
my heart did bleed ♪

♪ but I held on

♪ you be strong

♪ when the winds of fate
did blow me down ♪

♪ I'd get back up,
stand my ground ♪

♪ I held on

♪ so you get strong

♪ all the lessons
you've learned ♪

♪ they last for life

♪ don't be fooled
by their illusion ♪

♪ in the midst of a fire,
there's still a light ♪

♪ don't get caught
in the confusion ♪

♪ when you call
upon the heart ♪

♪ it hears
every word you say ♪

♪ when you call
upon the heart ♪

♪ the answer's
just a heartbeat away ♪

♪ when you call
upon the heart ♪

♪ it hears every
word you say ♪

♪ when you call
upon the heart ♪

♪ the answer's
just a heartbeat away ♪