Dancer in the Dark (2000) - full transcript

1964 in small town Washington state. Selma Jezkov√°, a Czechoslovakian immigrant, and her preteen son Gene live in a rented trailer owned by and on the property of married Bill and Linda Houston, he the town sheriff. Beyond Bill and Linda, Selma has a small group of friends who look out for her, including her primary confidante, Kathy, with who she works, and Jeff who wants to be her boyfriend. Jeff regularly waits outside Selma's workplace long before the end of her shift to drive her home, despite she always refusing in not wanting to lead him on. Her primary job is working on the Anderson Tool factory assembly line, but she does whatever she can to earn money. What only Kathy knows among Selma's friends is that she is slowly going blind, her medical condition being genetic. Selma is barely able to see, just enough to do her job. Her primary reason for moving to the US and for working all the time is to earn enough money for an operation for Gene when he turns thirteen, he who doesn't know anything about his mother or his own degenerative eyesight. None of Selma's friends, not even Kathy, know about the money for Gene's operation. Beyond this sole goal of the operation, Selma allows only one indulgence in her life, anything having to do with musicals, which she loves, it an escape from the problems of her life. Kathy often takes her to the cinema to watch old musicals, Kathy who has to describe to Selma what is happening on the screen much to the other patrons' chagrin. Selma also has the lead of Maria in a community theater production of "The Sound of Music". Close to having enough money for the operation, Selma is in a race against time before she loses enough of her sight not to be able to work or participate in the musical production. What may also threaten Selma's goal of the operation for Gene is some financial problems facing Bill. He feels pressured to provide Linda with the comforts of life to which she is accustomed that he believes she requires in their marriage to be satisfied, and as such he is reluctant to tell Linda of those financial problems.

You're sweating.

I know. I'm excited though.
I can see it all happening.

A little turn...

Now side to side.

Other people can sing.

Can we talk out here
for a minute?

She's fantastic.

What are you
talking about?

I think she sings funny.

And her dancing's not
all that great either.

That's the first time
she did it, okay?

Yeah, but I had
all the kits by then.

Because she didn't
take the kettle,

so I was stuck.

Do you want me to
take the kettle, Samuel?

No, I don't.
I just want Kathy

to put it over here.
This is, you know...

If you say these words,
and then, boom,

you just put
your hands out,

and there they are.
They're there.

Please don't
drop the props, Kathy.

Wait, wait.

Why are you putting it
on her head, though?

I'm a little confused.

I don't know.
It was, uh...

Because she's not
going to pick it up.

It looks like
you're trying to...

put a hat on her head
or something.

You're fantastic.

You just have to listen
to your heart, Cvalda.

I don't want you
to call me Cvalda.

Okay, Paul, please.

You're Cvalda
to me.

Let's do some sound effects.


I told you
no tapping

in "The Sound
of Music."

It really needs rhythm.

Like drums or something.

doing a great job.



Oh, hello, Selma.
Come here.

- Are you ready?
- Yeah, I'm ready.

Okay, you know
where to stand.


So let's try
this one.


even this one.


I think you can work
that machine safely.

I'll write a note
to the plant

and let them know.

Thank you.





We lost five hours
'cause some idiot

broke the machine.

Bill's here.


Well, he's here
with Gene.

Oh, that sounds
like bad news.

What are you
going to do?

Well, I guess I got
to tell her, don't i?

You can't bring
the script to work, Selma.

Keep your eyes
on the machine, okay?



Bill's here.


He's here with Gene.

Not again!

You got to come
right back, okay?

Don't be too worried.

We're gonna work this out.

Here she comes.

Why are you
not in school?!


When I say so,
you go to school!

Do you think I joke?

You have to study!

Come on, Selma, stop.

We talked about this.
Didn't we talk about it?

Hanging out with those
automobile thieves.

So what?

He's learning.

he's learning.

Aw, come on.

Gene, this is the most
important thing.

You have to go to school.

Selma, l--I can...

drive him back to school
if you like.

Since when was that
your business?

What you doing here?

If you need
a ride home--

I don't
even punch out

until after
another two hours.

Sometimes you punch out
around this time.

I never punch out early!

Don't need a dumb...

Don't need a ride!

In your little head.

All right.

Come on, Mr. G.
Let's get you to school.

Thank you, but l...

I'll just...
I'll just ride my bike.

Bye, Jeff.

She likes you.

I'm sure of it.

You're sure?

Yeah, I'm sure of it.

This is my punishment,

that you help me with this.

And you've got...

You've got to make
your bed as well.

And you forgot
to wrap up the bread.

Two times.

There's no more of that.

You keep reading.

"So long, farewell,

auf... wiedersehen...

adieu, adieu, adieu,

to yieu and yieu and yieu."

"To yieu...

and yieu..."

What does that mean,


It's your dumb musical.

"And yieu..."

It's German.

- You think?
- Mm.

You want
some more ketchup?


Are you tired?

Why--why should you...

always ask me so...

so stupid questions?

Shall I show you
my step?

Oh, hi.
Hi, Gene.

How's the dancing?

Oh... good.

- Yeah?
- Yeah, Yeah.

You want to come over
to me and Bill's place

and listen
to some music?

would be lovely.

But... we couldn't.

Come on.
Come on.

Yeah... uh...

Let's go.
Come on.

You should ask Bill
about his money.

Linda likes it when
we talk about that.

You're doing
a very nice job with these.

How about that?

You have to be
very careful

not to bend
the card.


Otherwise I don't
get paid for it.


That's fair,

the people in the shops
would never want to buy it

if it's bent.

You wouldn't buy it
if it was bent.

That's true,
I wouldn't.

Wouldn't buy anything
if it was bent.

In Czechoslovakia,

I saw a film,

and they were eating candy
from a tin

just like this.


I thought to myself...

how wonderful it must be

in the United States.


You think my house
looks like a movie?

Oh, our house
looks like a movie.

And you look
like a movie star.

Bill gives me
a lot of money.

You know?

I know.

Of course, it's all
that money you inherited,

isn't it, Bill?

That's right.

Hey, Selma...

Take the rest
with you.

Are you sure?

Go on.


Good morning.

I've got the rent.


You always pay
right on time.

Don't worry about Gene.
I'll get him off to school,


Thank you.

Thanks very much.

Remember your bag.



I think you're always
so serious, Kathy.

Aw... again we start.

I don't think inside
you're serious at all.

I don't know.

Not always.


Why do you
call me that?

It's like...
someone who's...

I don't know,
just big and happy.

I am not that big.

I don't know.

Just need someone
to pull it out.

Beautiful eyes.


But he's not
real happy, is he?

How is she doing?

It's when she
cannot keep up,

and she's going to faint.

Ah, she fainted.

Please be quiet.

Oh, give us a break.

She doesn't see
that well.

I paid good money
to see this film.

Well, so did she.

I love it
when they dance.

For Pete's sake,
it's a musical.

Of course they're dancing!

We know that!

Oh, you're so smart.

- Yes.
- Oh.

I think you made
friends, Kathy.


So, what'd she say?


What did she say?

She didn't say

Are you trying to
tell me something?

It's about the bike.

The bike?

Mm, the bike.

Oh, um, l--I--

I cannot
give Gene a bike.

Is this his idea?

No, it's not his idea.



Did you ask them
to come over?


No, he didn't.
It doesn't...

He doesn't know anything,
Selma. Frankly.

Why, have I
done something?


I haven't got
the money.

But... I'm almost
the only kid in class

who doesn't have
a bike.

I even know a boy
who's got a scooter.

You know I haven't got
any money.

The only extra money I got

the times I managed
to save up,

I send it...

to Grandpa.

- Come have a look.
- I'm not gonna get you

expensive things.

Your mother
is only teasing.

Look what she's
brought for you!

It's a bike!

We cannot
accept that.

Selma, it was second-hand.

I can't give him
any expensive things.

- Yeah, but--
- I can't even give it

for his birthday.

- Yeah, but, well--
- He's just gonna accept that.

I'm not that sort of mom.


I'm just not that kind
of mother, Gene. I...

Can't you be

that kind
of a mother?

It's not exactly a scooter.

Hmm... We'll see.

We'll see.


Don't ride
too fast.

Hey, gene,
bring it over here.

He looks very happy,
doesn't he?

He does look happy.

Here he comes again.


Bring it over here.



Did you hear
what she said?

- She say okay?
- Yeah!

Did you say okay?


Promise to go to school.

Yes, yes.

Every day.
On time.

I didn't know you
were such a good biker.

Rust and women
are the same.

"Rust and women
are the same"?

They are the same.

What is it?

Your fat Yeah. id that?

Some joke...

I don't know
what it meant.

Look at that.
Oh, ho...

You're so kind.
Look at me.

He did all the work,
you know that.

He's really good.

Thank you, Jeff!

You're welcome.

Come in.

Something up, Bill?

No, no, I just couldn't
sleep, that's all.

I have no money.

All the money
that I inherited is...

It's gone.

And Linda...


She spends and spends.

And my salary's
nowhere near enough.

I can't say no to her.

The bank's gonna
repossess the house...

because I'm so far behind
on the payments.

And I'm gonna lose Linda.

I know it.

I know I am.

She loves you, Bill.

Oh, don't cry.

I shouldn't
have told you.

Don't worry.

- Shouldn't have told you.
- It's okay.

Don't worry.

No, I think you've
got enough... stuff.

Would it make you
feel better

if I told you
a secret?

What secret
could you tell me?

I'm going blind.

Not yet, but...


Maybe sometime
this year.


It's not as bad
as it sounds.

It's, uh...

It's a family thing.

But, blind?

I've always known it.

From... when I was
a little girl,

I knew.

And you're okay?

Well, I came to America

because in America,

they can give Gene
an operation.

You know?


He doesn't know
about it.

You... you
mustn't tell him,

because then
it could get worse.

I just have to save up
money, you know,

enough money to...

Oh, I almost got it.

To, uh...

For the operation.

They can operate on Gene
when he turns 1 3.

And you made up that story
about your father?


I never had a father.

I made up
his name, too.

And that's why you
put in all these hours

and do all these pins
and do everything you do.

For him.

For his operation.

Well, it is my fault.

I guess...

How is it your fault?

Because l...
I knew he would...

he would have
bad eyes like me.

But I had him...

all the same.

You're very strong.

I'm not strong.

I've got
little games I play

when it goes really hard.

When I'm working
in the factory...

and the machines,
they make these...


And I just start dreaming,

and it all becomes music.

But you like movies,
don't you?

- I love the movies.
- Yeah?

I just love
the musicals.

Oh, when they're
all tap dancing?

All of them
tap dancing,

all of them, this
huge, long line.

I... wouldn't you
like to be

in that big,
long line?


Kicking your feet
up there?


When they're,
like, spiraling up

the huge,
enormous wedding cakes

to the top?


But isn't that annoying

when they do the last song
in the films, though?


Because you just know
when it goes really big,

and the camera goes,
like, out of the roof,

and you just know
it's gonna end.

I hate that.

I really hate that.

I used to cheat on that
when I was a little girl

back in Czechoslovakia.

I would leave the cinema

just after
the next to last song,

and the film would
just go on forever.

It's lovely, isn't it?

That is lovely.



Thank you for
telling me your secret.

Thanks for
telling me yours.

Mum's the word, right?


We don't tell anybody?

Oh, yes.

I won't tell



Oh, thank you.

So, can I get you

Yeah, sure.

How about a big one?

How many is there
in a big one?

1 0,000.

I'll have a big one.

What's this
guy's name again?


The old man,
your old man,

the guy we're carding
these pins for.

Her father?

I know.



Oldrich Novy.

He used to dance
in Prague.

You commies
make a big deal

out of sharing


a good thing.

What are you doing
here if, uh...

so much better

than the U.S. of A?

No, Selma, no!

There are
two plates.

It's all right.

You know what happens

when you put two plates
in, don't you?

Well, she didn't do it.
I mean, it didn't happen--

You destroy
the tool.

It takes
a whole day

to mend.

Never two plates,
Selma, never!

You cheated the doctor.

You shouldn't be working
at the press at all.

I mean, how dare you!
Just how much can you see?

I could do my job
with my eyes closed.

So could you.


It's just because
I was daydreaming.


Dreaming about what?

Oh, I just
hear music.

Come on. I mean,
Selma, music?

You could also
cut off your hand

just like that.
You have to watch out

every second.

Promise me
you'll stay awake.

I--I promise I will
stop daydreaming.

Aw, you're not--
you repeat,

but you don't
even listen to me.

I don't know why
I bother that much.

Hi, Selma.

If you're not
going with Kathy,

can I give you
a lift?

I don't want
a boyfriend.

I--I told you.


You're a really
nice guy, Jeff,


I just don't have time
for a boyfriend.

Not right now.

I know.

If I wanted a boyfriend,
it would be you, Jeff.

I just don't want one
right now.

All right.

No problem, you know,

on the back,
to have the bike there.


Bye, Jeff.

I don't think it's
very safe, you know,

to ride a bike
wearing glasses and all.

- Selma?
- Bye, jeff.


Are you okay?

Yeah, I'm fine.

Hello, Selm.

Hi, Bill.

Headed home?

Uh, yes.

Want to put it
in the back?

Oh, that would be
lovely. Yes, please.

Hi, Jeff.

Hey. Did you
see the truck?


They're blind,

like crazy.

He's what?

He's driving
like crazy.

Getting dirty.

That's all right.

Thank you.

Bye, Jeff.


Thank you, Bill.

- Okay?
- Okay, yeah.

If I could just make
the next payment,

I'd have
a bit more time.


All I need is a loan.

It'd just be a month.

This money is Gene's.

I'm sorry, Bill.

That's all right.
I shouldn't have asked.

Oh, you had to.
Don't worry,

there's no harm
in asking.

No, no, I
shouldn't have asked.

Linda wants new couches.

I could always
shoot myself.

You mustn't say
things like that.

Make things easier.

- You know that, Bill.
- Aw, Selma.

You mustn't say
things like that.

Selma, I'm kidding.

Hi, Selma.
Come on in.

Hi, Gene.

Good morning.


How are you?

Fine, thank you.

Can I see the gun?

Yeah, go on, sure.

- He's got a gun?
- Sure.

He's a police officer.

I just didn't know
he would keep it here,

in the house.

Oh, yeah.
Yeah, yeah.

He keeps it
in his desk.

Maybe I should
pay more rent.

It's been the same

for the whole period
I've been here.

No, Selma,
I won't hear it.

You keep your money.
You need it more

than we do.

Two boxes?

Did you decide
you are going to do

two boxes at
the same time now?


1 0:00 then?

1 0:00.

What happens
at 1 0:00?

I'm--I'm gonna do
the night shift.

The night shift?

You can hardly see
well enough

to do your own shift.

It suits me fine.

It's just after
drama class.

You are going
to do that, too?

I've had my fill
of you, Selma.

You do
what you want.

Go ahead,
break your neck.

Do your night shift,

but don't think
for one second

I'm going to come
and rescue you.


Kathy split already.

I'm not looking
for Kathy.

I was looking
for you.

I just have to go to
drama rehearsal.

So what do you say?

You can always
ride your bike.

You have it over there.

I left it at home.

I thought it'd be
quicker if I walked.

How do you reckon that?

I just walk along
the railroad tracks.

It's a...


Look, I don't understand.
In musicals...

why do they start to sing
and dance all of a sudden?

I mean, I don't suddenly
start... to sing and dance.


You're right, Jeff.
You don't.

The last thing on the list
is the bake sale.

Two sundays away.

Hi, Selma.
Come on in, come on in.

I'm gonna introduce you
to your understudy.

My understudy?


This girl Suzan,
who boris knows,

is a good singer.
She's a good dancer.

She'll learn
your part, too,

because, say,
you get a cold,


you can't do it,

then the show
doesn't have to stop.


Suzan, Selma.
Selma, Suzan.

Could you take off
your glasses?

I think
we'll do the part

without glasses.

Next sunday,
you will see

both Marias.

I mean, Selma will
do the role, really,

but... i'll have you
read part of it too.

All right?

It's your first time
on the night shift,


While this
is being pressed,

you'll be cutting
on the other machine.

That means
you'll be in charge

of two machines.

You have to beat Sarah
over there, right?

This pallet must
never be empty.

Is it always
so dark in here?


Is it always
so dark in here?

It's exactly the same
as the daytime.


The only thing is you have
to work a little faster.

That's what
you're paid for, right?

- Okay.
- Okay?

Thank you.

- Excuse me.
- Yeah?

You have to work
a little, you know,

a little faster
than this.


What are you
doing here?

What do you think?

I didn't put you down for
the night shift, Kathy.

Run along, Norman.

I'm on my own time now.

How I spend it
is my own business.

'Night, ladies!

Good night!


A little faster.

I like it better
when you dance.

You should dance
more... Cvalda.

I will dance
when there is music.

It's music.

Now dance.


Stop that,
you've cut yourself!

Get away from
the machine!


Oh, Jeff is here.

Hello, Jeff.

Hi, Kathy.

Do you live here?

Thought she might
say yes to a ride

when it's
this late.

M-maybe Kathy...

wants a ride.

No, it's all right.

What's that,
with your hand?

She cut her...

Cut my finger.

Yeah. It's going
to be all right.

The plates are sharp.



I think I found
a solution to our problem.

That makes me
really happy.

It's nothing special...

But I've made up my mind.
I'm gonna tell Linda,

and, uh...

I mean, after all,
she loves me, and...

We'll just
work it out together.

That sounds like
a really good idea, Bill.

I'm sorry, I'll
let you get to bed.

I guess I'm kinda tired.

Thanks, Bill.

Good night, Selma.

Good night, Bill.


What's happening now?

Here we go.
Selma, are you ready?


You're on.

Cut. Cut, stop.

Stop, please.

This is Selma's entrance, okay?


Okay, Paul, please.

How far
do you think it is?

I don't know.


Kathy, what
are you doing?

This is
Maria's entrance.

I'm sorry.

My mistake.

Please, please!

I don't have
all night!

Six steps.

Let's take this
a little more seriously.


Okay, I'm thinking
maybe, Selma...

You could take a little
sort of circle around Boris

on this next part,

unless you have something else
you wanna suggest.

I'm open.




I need to
talk to you.

Oh, Selma, please, if
it's about the drummer,

I have been looking
everywhere for a drummer--

It's not
about the drummer.

It's not
about the drummer.

Um... just a quick word.

Do you wanna
go outside?



I--I'm not
gonna play Maria.


My heart just
isn't in this...

Like, I shouldn't
be wasting my time

on something...

that isn't...
that important really.

I've been watching Suzan,
and she's...

She's great.

She's... She's very--

She's a much better dancer
than I am.


Suzan's terrific.
I'm not denying that,

but you--I thought
you lived for musicals.

So you've been pretending
the whole time?


I've just been pretending.

I don't know what else
I could do with you.

I've got everything
cast right now.


The only part that's left
is the old nun

who lets maria out
of the convent gate.

I don't think
you'd want that part.

There's no dancing
in that.

quite serious then?

She's serious.

It's important
for the part.

Okay. I'm not
dancing really.


I could put a little bit
of dancing in there.

You think so?

It--I didn't
have it in mind.

You can have
your tapping.

She could be just
a little... humorous

once in a while...

even though
she's a nun.

You'll always be
my perfect Maria.

Where are all
the hairpins today?

I left them at home.

And she won't be
playing Maria.

What do you reckon
I'm gonna do

if I can't bawl you out
for learning your lines

on company time?



What kind of a joke
is that?

Well, she's beating me.

I need a word with you.

We're talking
right now.

All right...

Come on.

Please sit down.

We were off
for the whole day.

Everything stops when
the machine breaks.

You know that.

I--I can do my job
just fine...

if I stick
to the day shift.

This won't happen again.

Look, I daydream
too much.

I--I decided to quit.


And I guess,
then l--I forgot.

I've been ordered
to let you go, Selma.

You're not
gonna have to pay

for the machine
you broke.

I got them
to agree to that.

Uh, thanks, Norman.

This is your salary.

And you know, um...

Maybe we can find you

away from the machines

where your eyesight
wouldn't matter so much.


Not right away.

That's very kind
of you.

I better go.

I'll be okay.
I really will.

Thanks, Norman.

Thank you, Selma.

Thank you.

What is she
going to do now?

Did you ever think
about that?

Don't worry, Kathy.

I'm gonna be fine.

Has anybody
seen Jeff today?

He's usually here
early, Selma,

but not this early.

It's a shame.



I could give you
a lift if you want.

I--I will need a lift...


I need to do
something important 3:00.

Well, you need to get
your truck then, don't you?


Train's coming.
Get off the track, Jeff.

You have to be careful.

Stay to the side.

You can't see,
can you?

What is there to see?

You can't see,
can you?

See you at 3:00.

I can see.

Gene hasn't
come back yet.

I need to talk to Bill.

He decided to
take the day off

to go to the bank
for his box.

Is he--is he upstairs?


I know everything, Selma.

Bill told me.

I want you to move out!

I--I don't understand.

Wh-what would you know?

That you came on
to him.

That you asked him
into the trailer,

but he
turned you down!

You've got nothing
to say for yourself?


I want to talk to Bill.

Hi, Bill.

Linda saw me go up
to the, um...

Up to the trailer.

I told her it was you
who wanted to, uh...

That you'd...

That you'd fallen
in love with me.

I know.
She told me.

And what did
you tell her?


You didn't tell her
I was lying?

Mum's the word, right?

Linda told me
you went to the bank.

I went to the bank
to ask for more time.

But I couldn't do it.

And I brought the box
home instead.

Linda always
gets so proud

when she sees me
sitting in here with it.

But you have put
my money in it,

haven't you?

To make it look
like it's yours.

I'm gonna have to take it.

Well, you
can have it back.

No, you can have it.


You can have it back
in a month.

But--but I can't
do that, Bill.


I--I've decided to...

to pay the doctor

this afternoon.

I can't save up more money.

That's over now.

Gene doesn't
even turn 1 3

until after christmas.

It was $2,026

and 1 0 cents

in the tin.

I can't count it now,
but I trust you.

And it's...

$30 I got today...

which makes it


and 1 0 cents.

It's not enough.

But it'll have to do.


- Bye, Bill.
- Selma...

Selma, stop.

I'm pointing my gun
at you, Selma.

I don't believe you.

You're just trying
to scare me.

I can't see a gun.


Just... feel this.
Feel this.

Just feel it!
Feel it!

Do you believe
I have the gun?

I believe you.

But it's my money.

No, it's my money.

It's the money
I had in my box.

And you're trying
to steal it from me.


Selma, stop!

Selma, stop!

- No!
- Linda! Linda!

What's the matter,

She tried to
steal the money.

She knew I had
the gun in my...

in my drawer
and she--

Is that why
you wanted him,

for the money?

Go out to the car
and get my handcuffs.

Go get the handcuffs.

Give me the money.

Give me the money.

Give me the money
and i'll let you go.



Where should I go?

Just give me
the money.


Just give me
the money!

The money.

Give me the money!



- Get--
- No!

Oh, Bill!

You shot me.

No, no, Selma.

You did the right thing.

I should've done it

Kill me.

Just kill me.

Will you just be
my friend...

and show some mercy,
please, and just...

kill me?

Your handcuffs aren't
in the car, Bill.

Just show
some mercy, Selma,

and just...

Linda, run.

Run up to Miller's farm.
Just run up to Miller's farm

and call the station.
Tell them to hurry.

Run! Get up there!
Go on to Miller's farm!

If you want
the money...

you're gonna have
to kill me.

Don't do this to me.

Don't do this
to me.

I'm not letting go.


Selma, shoot me!

Just shoot me!
Shoot me! Shoot me!

Shoot me!!

Cant't you
just stand up

and pull
the goddamn trigger!

I'll have to
take the money.

Forgive me.



What are you
doing here?

Is it already 3:00?

Uh, not really.

Hell, I'm always early.

You cut yourself again.

There's some blood
on your blouse.


I couldn't feel it
at all.


We're here now.

By the bus stop?

Yeah, the bus stop.

It's over there.

And the lake
is here?

Promise me
that you won't follow me.


Yeah, I promise.

Dobry Vecer,
Pane Doktore.

Dobry Vecer.

I would like to pay
for the operation now.


and 1 0 cents.

I know it's not quite

what you told me, but...

but it's all
I could get together.


What last name

shall I put
on the receipt?

Oh, I don't need
a receipt.

I really don't.

I have to know
the name of your son.

When he comes in
for his operation.


He will come,

and he will say
that his name is Novy.

And then
you will know...

that he has
been paid for.


Like Oldrich Novy,

the tap dancer?

It is strange,
isn't it?

But he never really
made it over here,

did he?

I saw his films
when I was a kid.

He was in
the first musical

I ever saw.

Same here.


It's Tuesday night.

What about
your rehearsal?

Yeah, I guess.

You want to go?


Then maybe put
your arm around her,

and... a little bit of...

Hi, Selma.

Hi, Samuel.

We weren't sure you'd
show up, actually.

Sure, I'd show up.


Nice to see you.

Be right back.


She's here.




Okay, I think--I
think you could...

try it one more time
for me.

But I should--
I should be going now.

I think Gene may wonder
where I am.

Jeff, he--he hasn't
seen me all day.

I think maybe we
could do your scene.

Let's do
the tapping scene.

Okay? We haven't
done it in weeks,

and we really need
to rehearse it,

and while you're here,
we might as well

take advantage
of the time, please?

Okay, let's do
the tapping scene.

You come offstage--

Let me have
the nuns up there.

you're going to do

Selma's part
for her

for right now,
all right?

You like it?


We haven't done it
for a while.

Remember that part
we did where--

where you, uh...

you come to
the convent gate

to say goodbye
to the--to Maria?

I should leave, Jeff.


Gene--Gene is
probably worried now.

I haven't seen him
all day.

All right.

I'm sorry, Samuel, but...

Betty, come here
for a second, please.

The drummer
that you wanted--

Remember, you asked
me for a drummer?

I found somebody.
She's fantastic.

Her name's Betty.
She's right here

for the first time

Please meet her.
Selma, this is Betty.

Hi, Betty.

You play the drums?


Tell her how long
you've been studying.

Two years.

She's wonderful.

You've got to stay
and enjoy this.

You've got to--
I have an idea.

Let's do the finale.

I just remembered,
you hate finales.

No finale!

I've a better idea.

"Climb Every Mountain,"
part one.

The state will show

that the defendant
has not only perpetrated

the most callous...

and well-planned homicide
in recent memory...

but is also
a fundamentally selfish


who cynically hides

behind a handicap,

devoid of sympathy
for anybody

but herself.

This woman found
trust and friendship

when she sought refuge
in our country,

and the evidence will show

that she has repaid
such kindness with betrayal,

robbery, and murder,

inflicted upon
the very people

who opened their homes
and hearts to her.

Ladies and gentlemen
of the jury...

The evidence will prove
that she herself...

did not show that mercy
she will ask of us.

Is this the bag here,

the very same.

Houston's blood
was all over it.

Well, shortly
before the homicide,

I had a checkup
on her vision,

and I found
that she was myopic.

It's nearsighted--

Nearsighted, but...
She could see.


She said communism was...

better for human beings.

She had nothing
but contempt

for our great country
and its principles?

Apart from its musicals.
She said the American one...

the American ones
were better.


the defendant
preferred Hollywood

to Vladivostok.

I suppose that's
an acknowledgement of sorts.

She just asked
many times

about the money.

She wanted to know
where it was?

That's right.

She asked you
about the gun?

Yes, she did.

She wanted to know
where it was kept?

That's right.

Bill was lying on the floor

and... he was wounded.



He was pleading for his life?


"I--I beg you,
I beg you,

I beg you."

You showed him
no mercy, Selma!

You shall have
no mercy either!

Would you state your name
for the record, please?

Selma Jezkova.

And Bill and
Linda Houston...

were your friends,
is that right?


In fact, you lived
in a trailer

on their property.


And didn't they also

take care
of your young son

when you were at work?


They bought him a...

birthday present

Is that right?

Yeah. They
got him a bike.


Your sight
was poor,

you claim,
contrary to

the expert testimony
we have received.

But you saw
well enough

to inflict 34 wounds
on Bill Houston.

So why did you
kill him, actually?

If I may be
so bold to ask?

He asked me to.

He did?

How intriguing.

A man with
a fine career

and some wealth,
a happy marriage,

why would
this Bill Houston

ask you to kill him?

I promised not to say.

Well, that clears
things up immensely.

You promised
you wouldn't say.

In that case, we'll just
have to take your word for it

when you say
that the money you stole

that Bill Houston's savings

also disappeared
so mysteriously

that same day.

Just, uh...

Just where did you
get your money?


I'd been saving up.

Well, I suppose
you could call it that.

What were these savings
to be used for?

You never bought your son

so much as
a single birthday present,

as we've heard.


My--my father.

In Czechoslovakia.

Your father?

And what,
pray tell...

is his name?

My--my father is...

Oldrich Novy.


We're meant to believe...

that you killed
Bill Houston

by inflicting
34 wounds on him


He asked you to.

Just as we're meant
to believe

that you were blind
when you did it...

Are meant to believe
that it was your own savings

that you stole from him...

Just as we're meant
to believe

that you sent all you had

to your father back home,

a man by the name
of Oldrich Novy.

Is that right?


Thank you,
Miss Jezkova.

Ladies and gentlemen
of the jury,

you've now heard from
the defendant's own lips.

You must believe her,

just as you
must believe her

when she claims
her father's name

is Oldrich Novy.

Your Honor...

at this time,
the state calls

to the witness stand...

Oldrich Novy.

Please state
your full name.

The name is
Oldrich Novy.

And you used to live
in Czechoslovakia?

That is right.

I live now in California,
as you know.

That's right, that's
where we found you.

What exactly is
your relationship

with the defendant?

I do not know her.

You don't know her?


You have not received money

from her.

Money that--that...

she says was so dearly earned?

No, I have not.

Perhaps you're
not her father then?

No, I am not.

Well, if
this relationship

was made up
by the defendant,


can you think
of any way

she might've come
to know your name?

I was once well known
in Czechoslovakia

uh... because of my profession.

Yes, Mr. Oldrich Novy,
what is your profession?

Maybe that can give us
a clue to why,

why this somewhat...

certainly communistic, woman

who worships Fred Astaire
but not his country,

why she might've lied...

and misused your name...

to make us think
all her money was spent

on a poor father
and not on her own vanity.

What is it that you do?

I was an actor.
I made films.

They were musicals.

Say it again!

Will the court please rise?

The honorable Judge
A.D. Mantle presiding.

Have you reached a verdict?

Yes, Your Honor.

Will the defendant
please rise?

We, the jury,
find the defendant

Selma Jezkova

guilty of murder
in the first degree

and hereby sentence her
to death.

Is this
the verdict of this jury?

You fully understand
that it must be unanimous?

We do, Your Honor.

Selma Jezkova...

You are hereby sentenced

to be taken from this place

and confined in
the state penitentiary

until such time
as you shall be executed

by being hanged
by the neck

until you are dead.

This court is adjourned.

All rise!

I've just heard
about the...

Supreme Court decision.

Yeah, l...

I just want to talk
practical stuff.

On Gene's birthday...

he will receive
a letter.

And it's so important,

that he reads it
really carefully.

I need you to take care
of that for me...

because I'm not
gonna be there

when he gets it.

He should not be afraid,

because there's nothing
to be afraid of, Kathy.

Listen, Gene wants
to see you so badly.

Won't you let him?

There's nothing
for him to see.

He's got you now,

And there's
one more thing:

He has to
call himself Novy.

very important.

All right,
time's up, Selma.

I know that sounds
a bit foolish.


I'm sorry I didn't
tell you before

about all this.
I just didn't dare to

because they would
ruin everything.

But what--
Why does he

have to call himself Novy?

Stop asking questions
like that, Cvalda.

Please... Iet me
tell Gene hello...

from you to him.


I know you love
your son very much.

I love him very much.

Got a boy of my own
back home.

You never told me that.

Good night, Brenda.

Good night.

Say hi to your son
from me.

Thank you, Selma.

Can I help you?

Did you once have
a patient called...


Selma Jezkova?

Well, if it wasn't
too long ago,

I can check
my records for you.

Jes... Jez... Jess...

Sorry, there's no one
here by that name.

What about Novy?

I have good news for you.

What's that?

We found a new lawyer...

and he's going to get
your case re-opened.

He says your lawyer
was incompetent.

What do you mean?

Well, the case is
going to be re-opened.

You won't get
the death sentence.

Is that true?

Yes. New information
has turned up.

Wh-what information?

Well, we know
the whole story, Selma.

Why didn't you tell us

You know, about...

about the money
for Gene's operation.

How did you find out?

Well, Jeff talked
to the doctor.

Does--does Gene know?

I mean,
have you told Gene?

No, I didn't.

But you've got
a much better case now.

That's very important,

His eyes might get
worse from worrying,

and then the operation
won't work.

Yes, but, Selma...

Don't you see
that it would help you

if they knew that you
were trying to save your son

from going blind?

The lawyer,
he'll come and see you

in two weeks' time.

Kathy, but, uh...

You know
they're hanging me

in one week.

We know that,
but he says

you can apply for a stay.

You know, most cases
get one the first time.

Well, you can smile.


Yeah... it's just
too much for me.

I thought
I was strong.

I just can't
take it, Kathy.

Apply for a stay.

What if they
don't phone?

Uh, well, you'll be
transferred to the other...

cell block
at some point tomorrow.

That's the cell block
where they hang people.

that's where they...

spend the last day.

And then they do
their 1 07 steps.

It's from that room...

to the gallows,
isn't it?

That's what they say,
Selma, but...

Look at...

You're gonna get
your stay.

Why don't you try to
think of something nice,

all right?

It's just
so quiet here.

What's that got
to do with it, Selma?

You know, when I used
to work in the factory...

I used to dream
that I was in a musical,

because, in a musical,

nothing dreadful
ever happens.

But it's so quiet here.

Don't the prisoners
march or something?



No, they don't.
They don't...

There's not...

There's not much noise
around here, Selma,

I know.

But later they
turn on the radio.

No, no, no.
There's no...

They don't allow radio
in the isolation block.

But I've been listening
to the ventilation...


I hear sometimes
people singing there,


hymns or...

That's not
against the rules,

to listen, is it?


I wonder if...

if maybe you're
hearing the singing

coming from the chapel.


Maybe you'll
even get a sermon.



You got your stay.

You got the stay.

I'm so happy for you.

I'm your new legal counsel.

My name is Luke, okay?

Oh, hi, Luke.

I'm, uh, quite sure...

I can get your sentence

All I need is a signature

stating you want
the case re-opened...

and then I can get
all the paperwork ready

by tomorrow.


There's a lot of things
your other lawyer didn't do

that I'm going to do.

A lot of ground
that wasn't covered

that I am going
to cover.

The fact that you were
fighting for your boy

is something
we can really milk.

I have some experience
in cases like this, so...

That's what
the attorney before said.

Uh... yeah.

You see, he was
appointed by the court,

and you don't get
the best legal counsel

that way.

Y-You were not
appointed by the court?

I'm not appointed
by the court, no.

You're gonna have
to pay me.

But... not to worry.


That's been
taken care of.

I made a deal with
your... Iady friend?


Yeah, in regard
to my fee.

I've agreed to
accept the amount

that she said
she could raise.

How much...

How much was it?

Well, I can tell you

because I received
an envelope.

It's, uh,
two thousand dollars--

$2,056.1 0?

That's it precisely.


There's something here.

I'd like to just sort of
go over our tactics.

I have a couple of
questions to ask you.

If he doesn't have
the operation next month,

it's gonna be too late!

And he will never
be able to see!

This is what
it's all about,

so he can see
his grandchildren!

Well, let me
tell you something.

The only thing
that's important to me

in my whole life,

and you don't
understand, Kathy!

- Listen to me!
- It's just plain stupidity!

- Listen to me!
- Waste that kind of money...

on a blind woman
who's gonna spend

the rest of her life
in jail!

But he needs his mother,
you know,

no matter where!

You don't understand!

He needs his eyes!

- He needs his mother!
- No!

- Yes! Alive!
- No!

Listen to reason
for once!



I listen to my heart.

I will go to the police.
I will tell them that...

you stole the money
from... from Bill.

Oh, yes,
I will tell that.

I will
tell them that,

that you stole it
from Bill,

and you will never see
the money again!

That will be gone
for good.

No operation! Nothing!
No mother! Nothing!

You can have
your money back.

I just want
to make sure

that you fully comprehend

what this means,
this decision.


You fully realize
what will happen?


I already asked
for no more stays.

Once this starts,
there's no stopping it.

You understand me?


I'm prepared.

Gene says thank you.

Thanks for what?

Oh, some comic books
on his birthday.

You can't buy him...

and say it's from me.

You have to stop
doing that, Jeff.

Uh, maybe
you can just...

phone him.

Just say,
you know...

something to him.

No, that's--that's
not a good idea.

He wants to be the one...

who's allowed to be there
when it happens.

But l-- And then
they told him

he's too young.

Who put that crazy idea
into his head anyway?

I don't want him
to be there.

I'll be there
if you would.

And Kathy?

You know Kathy.

She's still angry.

If you think
you can take it...

I would love you
to be there.

Don't cry, Jeff.

Jeff, don't cry.
It's gonna be fine.


Why did you have him?

You knew he would have
the same disease as you.

I just wanted to hold
a little baby...

just in my arms.

I love you.

It's time, Selma.



Your meal, Jezkova.

Selma Jezkova...

It's time.

Please stand.

She can walk on her own.


I'm afraid my legs
aren't working very well.

You can do it, Selma.


I have a plan, okay?


You're gonna
stand up with me.


I may make some noise.

It will give you
something to listen to.



There's 1 07 steps.

Selma, listen
to the mark.

I couldn't even do one.

You can do it.

I can't do it!

Now listen, Selma.

I want you to do
one--there, one.

Come on.





five... six...

seven... eight...

nine... ten...

1 1 ... 1 2... 1 3...

1 4... 1 5...

1 6... 1 7... 1 8...

1 9... 20...

21 ... 22... 23...

24... 25...

26... 27... 28...

29... 30...

39... 40...

43... 44... 45...

55... 56...

60... 61 ... 62...

70... 71 ... 72...

75... 76... 77...

93... 94... 95...

1 04... 1 05...

1 06...

1 07.

Selma Jezkova,

do you have
any last words?

Very well.


Selma, you okay?

It's okay.
It's okay.

Come on now.

Use the board.

Oh, no, no. No, wait.
Give her a chance.

She can stand up.
She can stand.

In here.

It's okay.
It's okay.

It's okay.

It's okay.

It's okay.

The straps
on her hands.

I'm scared.

It's okay.

- I'm so scared!
- I know.

On the mark.


I can't do the hood!

It's okay.

I have to breathe!

Nobody told me
about the hood!

It's just so
you can't see, Selma.

- I can't breathe!
- I know.

I can't breathe!

- Look, look--
- I can't breathe!

I have to breathe!

she can't breathe.

She can't breathe!
She can't--

I'm taking it.
I'm taking it.

This is irregular.

I don't care
if it's irregular.

- We have regulations.
- She's blind--

I don't care about
the regulations!

The girl is blind,
for Christ's sake.

I'm gonna make a call.

Yeah, make the call--


Yeah, we
have a situation here.

I'll hold for him.


The woman's blind...
I'll wait.



Waiting for a call.





He--he's just outside.

He gave me these
for you.


So he had the operation?

He will see
his grandchildren!

He is just outside.

You were right, Selma!