'Til There Was You (1997) - full transcript

Gwen grows up with her romantic mother constantly telling her the story of her courtship and marriage to her father. Nick grows up with an alcoholic father who can't hold a job and whose family, as a result, is forced to move all the time. The two are shaped by this - Gwen a romantic and Nick withdrawn, unsure of himself - as they watch the hugely popular sixties sitcom, "One Big Happy Family." Years later, it is the star of that show, now a child actor gone bad with a history of detox and people always saying, "I thought she was dead," Francesca Lanfield, who connects the two of them, after years of near-misses and almost encounters. Gwen is hired to ghost-write Francesca's autobiography, while Nick, becoming her lover, is the architect who is to design a building on Francesca's property. When Gwen decides to crusade to save Francesca's building, she writes letters to the newspaper which catches Nick's attention - and wins his heart.

Tell me again.
Start from…

I know where to start from.

It was 1961.

And you were a grown up
but you still lived with your parents.

And I worked for a wonderful man
named JFK.

And that summer
I took my vacation at Camp Unity.

It was where you went
to get out of the city

if you were young and single
and a registered democrat.

And there were handsome boys there.

And one day you and your friends
were playing ping-pong…

Who is telling this story?

when somebody stole your ping-pong ball,

which you didn't appreciate at all.

That's right.

But why did he steal it?

You know what?
That's not the point.

The point is
he gave it back.

What will you give me for it?

And that might have been
the end of the story.

But later that night…

I decided to take a walk
by the lake.

There he was
and he was holding…

I love this part.

…a bouquet of wild flowers.

So I introduced myself.

And that is the story
of how your mommy and daddy met.

I love that story.

And someday when you're all grown up
you'll meet someone too.

I know. I have it all planned.

Don't lie to me.
I know you've been drinking.

I'm this close
to a recording contract.

And I'm Conny Stevens.

Just this one loop.
That's all I need.

We can't afford a piano, Vince.

You're living
in a dream world.

I didn't say
"buy a piano", did I?

I didn't use
those exact words.

If you want to be a failure
all your life go ahead.

Mom, dad, look.

He should have drew the poor house
'cause that's where you're gonna put us.


Don't forget to brush, Nicholas.

It's gonna be okay, pal.

I don't hear practicing.

Tell me again about the piano.


This was not __ piano.

This belonged to your grandma Lina.

Hand-carved by a man named
Faustus Daukintis.

And they loved each other very much,
more than life itself.

Life itself?

But their parents disapproved because…

Because he wasn't Jewish.

Can I finish a sentence?

Then some very bad people
invaded Lithuania, called Nazis.

That's right. So Faustus Daukintis
bribed an official

so that he could get passage for
your grandmother in a boat bound for America

along with this piano.

And he told her that he would meet up
with her later in New York City

but she never saw him again.

Never again did she played that piano.

"One Big Happy Family".

See? This man has 3 daughters
and he marries this lady

who has 3 sons
and a sheep dog.

And they form
this rock'n'roll band,

even the dog.

we had to do something.

Miss Muff is really groovy
even if she is an old lady.

I know, Taffy. But telling lies,
even white ones, isn't groovy.

I hope you have learned something
from all this.

We have, Dad.
And we're really sorry.

That's Taffy.
She always says "right, Stinky".

Right, Stinky?

Don't let him
stay up all night.

Nicholas Dockin
where is your pass?

I need the teacher!

You're dead meat, Dockin.

His name was Johnny Hassenschmidt.

He was the first boy I met
after moving to Los Angeles.

He'd probably be my boyfriend now
if my dumb parents hadn't forced me
into private school.

But if they hadn't
we wouldn't even know each other.

Let's play "someday".

You first.

Someday I'll have contacts.

Someday we'll be grownups.

Someday someone will love me
more than life itself.

Someday my whole life will be
completely different.


We'll still be friends.

Forget that guy from 2nd grade.

There could be somebody out there
that's perfect for you.

Someone you don't even know yet.

I think I really learned
something from all this.

Right, Stinky?

All my life I pictured it.

Falling in love.
Night after night
I pondered my destiny.

I couldn't wait
for the story of my life to happen.

I knew it would happen.

It was just a question of where,
when and how, and how soon.

But I knew for certain that
once I found him, everything
would fall into place.

My search for a major??
proved frustrating.

So I entered grad school

and waited for that
piercing moment of revelation.

I guess the truth is
nobody had come along

who could actually live
after my expectations.

Nobody was "him",
till you.

Everything in my life
has led up to this moment.

Oh, hasten not this loving act

Rapture where self and not-self meet

My life has been the awaiting you
Your footfall was my own heart's beat.

That's beautiful!

Nick, you have
a real problem at intimacy.

Can I leave now?

Can you take 2 minutes
to converse with me?

Of course, you always manage to squeeze
intercourse into you busy schedule.

What can I say,
you make the time.

You have no romance in your soul.

You are incapable
of giving and receiving love.

By pursuing architecture,
you're merely constructing this symbolic wall

to separate yourself
from the rest of humanity.

Well, you snore.

None of this is surprising,
giving your __ childhood.

At the age of 3 to witness
your own father

trampled to death
at a fox hunt.

I think I should tell…

And then that mother of yours
shipping you to some
snotty Swiss boarding school.

We have to talk.

Please, don't smoke.

I have my final presentation
in 11 hours.

I have so much work into this model. __
Timon Heldenfeld will be judging my work.

Everything in my life has led up
to this moment.

You know, this whole
tragic-slash-romantic mythology

you cling to is
just a kind of addiction

which our sick culture

I'm quitting.
After this semester.

Just write something.
The semester is almost over.

You'd better get going.

He wanted me to spend the night,
I could see it in his eyes.

He is so protective.

Oh, sure.

All I have to eat today
is this fallafel.

-Oh, look!

There's Dean.

Don't say "hi", don't wave.
He might not see us.

Poor Dean.
He really likes you.

Oh, did I tell you!

Gregory is considering a job
at N.Y. __

Can you imagine it?
Gregory and I in New York City.

Your parents said you could stay
at their guest house after grad school

as long as you wanted.

I'd rather die than live
in their guests house.

New York could change everything.

I could write poetry.
Gregory and I…

Gregory's essays!

This has nothing to do with my life.

It's not a political statement,
it is a roof garden.

You put a roof garden
on a homeless shelter.

I thought the kids
should have some place…

I am just asking
what is the source.

There is no source.

The choices we make
are determined by who we are.

I am not saying that it's good.
I realize that it's crap.

Is that what you want me to say?
Okay, it's crap!

was apprehended today
for the possession of cocaine.

Francesca Lanfield,
known to millions as Taffy

for the hit TV show
One Big Happy Family

has been hospitalized in the past
for drug dependency.

In other news, president Bush…

Mr. Daukin

Made a fool of myself back there, didn't I?


I know what it's like.

You're Sophia Monroe.

When I see a building of yours

this feeling comes over me…

It's hard to explain.

I never really believed
I could amount too much until you.

I know what it's like.
The feeling that you just

never belong,
never be good enough.

I'm an architect.
We pay attention to how things are made.


You idiot!

Your stupid little building
nearly killed me!

I know a lot of you
brought in work today,
so who would like to begin.

I have a poem
I'd like to read.

It's here somewhere.
I know.

Does anyone else
have a poem today?



Come in.
I've been expecting you.

There is a knock on the door

and love walks through
and lights the fire.


Smile? Still, love,
we are going to stay a while.

And the fire breathes
and reads its spell.

But then love runs out
of lies to tell.

For love is restless.

Love is a flirt

Love has places to go.

And people to hurt.

so here is the shovel
to smother the flame

tomorrow you'll barely
remember my name.

And I'll try to forget you
my dearest one,

as a prisoner tries
to forget the sun

for life holds
no curtness,

Love holds no charms

Since I beheld you

in another's arms

I thought I had learned
all I could in a classroom situation

so I left college.

That makes sense,
you moved on.

How did you get into
ghost writing?

From a friend of a friend
I knew this doctor,

so next thing I know
I'm writing "Hi, I'm your __ "

Read it, you'll love __

Then I did this diet and exercise book,
"Eat less, move around more"…

Let me just guess.
You're tired, sick.

Tired of ghosting,
you're busting to write
something of your own.

I like other people stories,
they're safer.

I don't expect what I write
to change anybody's life.

Could I ask you a huge favor?

Could I possibly smoke
one cigarette?


Let me just…
Hold on one sec.

Actually, I'll have one with you.

I basically quit but…

Me too, basically.
Nobody smokes anymore.

There is one thing that
I shouldn't mention.

Do you want me to help you
with that?

I do this all the time.

Thank you.

Were was I?

-Oh, yes! Francesca!

Francesca will not go with an
"as told to". She wants sold crat __

I never put my name
on anything I write.

That way nobody gets hurt.

I think you are
the perfect person…

To tell her story.

I loved her as Taffy and…

One Big Happy Family.

Everybody loves Taffy.

What in the hell
is keeping her, anyway.

I know she had some
business thing.

Misty, try Francesca's purse.

This is awful but
I actually thought she was…

Dead. I know.
She gets that a lot.

I have Francesca on hold for you.


Do you remember those two
developers I told you about,
Murdstone and Heep,

Where are you?

…who can't build their condominium
if I won't sell them my building?

They've got me at some
architectural place.

and they're petrified.

It's highly enjoyable.

The book means everything to me
but this is business.

I can't believe it.
I thought she was…

Dead. I know.
What is she doing here?

She owns "La Fortuna".

What's "La Fortuna"?

The small 18-unit courtyard building
Murdstone Heep must acquire

in order to start construction of
the much anticipated Murdstone Heep complex.

He's got to see this.

What can I say?

I shouldn't have done it.
I shouldn't have gone
behind your back.

Everyone moonlights nowadays.

Oh, yeah.

And this is your apology?

I never thought they would get
this kind of publicity.

I know how you love the __

So you go behind my back
and you design "The awful truth".

I know it is a stupid name
for a restaurant.

The watering hall "du jour".

So tell me,
are you pleased with your work?

Yeah. Kind of.
Not completely.

Among those spotted at the __

What can I say?


I have to go now and meet
Murdstone and Heep,

and this woman
with cold feet.

That is important for the business.

So am I not gonna be considered
to design Murdstone Heep?

That's my punishment?

It's not a question
of punishment.

And no, you're not.

At least let me sit
in our meeting.

Come on.

Just seat there,
don't say anything.

I'll just seat there.
I promise.

I don't know.

That's her?
That is the holdout?

Right, Stinky?


She looks so much like
she looked in the cheerleader episode.

I remember the pompoms.

-Tell her you're a fan.
-Oh, come on.

17 thousand?

Yes, fine, I'll have dinner
with both you and her tonight.

Bob, I don't care
what you're wearing.

That was my lawyer.

He goes
"Francesca, why can't you sell?"

And I'm like
"You know what that neighborhood
means to me"

"I grew up in that neighborhood"

Don't people live there or something?
Think of them.

And he says:
"You can still change your mind
because that letter of intent isn't

legally binding"

So I guess I'm changing it.


What your layer doesn't know
is that you'd be a partner.

We want you to have full participation
because that's what you deserve.

We wish to address your concerns
but Mr. Dockin is not authorized to…


We're gonna have to pick
another restaurant

because we're never going
to get into the awful truth.

He can get you in.

I sort of designed it.

Get out of here!

No, I stepped my foot.
I'll see you at 8.

You must be so fucking proud!
Don't you just love the way
it turned out?

I'll sell.
On the condition that I make
full partner like he stated

and the further condition that
he designs it.

I shouldn't have done that.

Were you serious
about me designing?

I enjoy bending people to my will.
Sue me.

I just felt like helping you.

But I guess nobody is allowed
to do that.

cause you don't need anything
from anybody.

Am I warm?

The story of your life.

Tell me the story.

Start at the beginning.

Maybe this is the beginning.

We've got a deal.

I know you think
I'm not ready to…

I know you're not.

Once you start down this road
there's no turning back.

I don't want to.


I'm sorry!


I'm meeting…

There you are.

I'm meeting Francesca Lanfield.

Is this place finished?

Follow me.

I see.


Isn't this something?

I love it here.

Francesca saw Icecube here.

Unfortunately she won't be joining us.

Some food poisoning thing.

I didn't get all the details.

How did you come
to represent Francesca?

That's a long story.

You don't have to tell it.

I just had something in my eyes.

I'm sorry.

Are you all right?

This table just keeps stabbing me.

Francesca and I were involved.

I have moved on.

I have.

That's great.

Do you know where the ladies room is?

No? Okay.

Nick, I don't know what to say.

Do you want me to come over?

No, I need to be by myself
for a while.

You know how it is.

One minute your father is alive
and the next minute…

I begged him not to fly.

I've got to go.

What was that?

Just a business thing.
I've rescheduled.

-And you had a dinner thing?
-I canceled.

How long have you lived here?

2 and half years.

You should unpack.

This is just temporary.

Like insanity?

I plan to design my own place
in the near future.

This is kind of a layover.

I get it.

You can't unpack 'cause that would mean
you really live here.

Which you don't.

too good for you.

Who are you to deserve
some place perfect?

even unpack.

I never went to college.

This place does need something.
Needs a piano.

I'd buy you a piano tomorrow
and you'd hate it.

You would buy me a piano?

No, I'm saying I wouldn't.

Cause you'd prefer to dream
of some future piano
to a piano in actuality.

I used to be the same way.

I just sold a whole building.

It feels highly enjoyable.

"La Fortuna" was my shelter
as in money.

I was 18.

I was full time
at Crystal Meth University.

God, I love methamphetamines,
more than life itself.

My business manager
was scared I go through my whole savings.

So we bought it.

Saved my life.

You never grew up there?

Please. Never even seen it.

Speaking of things
you've never seen,

where's the bedroom?

You're not shy, are you?

My tits developed
at national television.

Shy __

I'm sorry.
They developed where?

While I was doing the show.

What show is that?

Get out of here.

You seriously don't know
what I'm talking about?

You never watched the
One Big Happy Family.

"One Big Happy Family"?
No. You see,

we weren't permitted to watch television
when I was a kid so…

What do you want?

You want me to be shy?

Just be yourself.

-Brief encounter is on.

Come on over,
we'll watch it together.

Come on,
we never see anymore.


-Where did your mother hide that __
-Oh, daddy.

You're not angry with me,
are you?

No, I'm not angry.

Forgive me.

Forgive you for what?

For everything.

For meeting you in the first place.

for taking the piece
of grit out of your eye.

For loving you.
For bringing you so much misery.

Oh, God,
I am so lonely.

I can't live like this anymore.

I'm sorry.

I had a peculiar evening.

I had dinner with this guy, Bob.

He's a perfectly decent guy.

He's somewhat obsessed with his
last girlfriend but


Gwen, sweetheart, come here.

Why haven't I found someone?

Am I so misshapen?

So repellent?

Why can't it just happen
like it did with you and mom?

Sweetheart, I'm going to tell you
something very important.

Tell me, please.

I never loved your mother.



I mean, not real love.


What are you talking about?

when you're talking about.
When you're searching for.

I will find someone.

You have someone.
She's upstairs.

She gave birth to me.

Many times, I can't tell you
how many times, I thought

I'll wait it out,
maybe she'll die.

You've been waiting
for my mother to die?

Not really but…

Yeah, that's true,
finally I can say it.

No, you can't.

I thought you would understand,
you of all people.

This is very unsatisfying.

I wanted something chewy,
I got something kecky.

Under the sink,
behind the __

Are you serious?


How can you say you never loved…

What about the story?

The night you met.

What about the flowers?

You went down to the lake
to find her

and you picked her flowers.

-I did?


I remember.

I had a date with a girl
I was just nuts about.

What the hell was her name?

Anyway, she stood me out,
and then I run into your mother.

She made a big deal.
She thinks I picked the flowers for her.

What am I gonna do,
argue with her?

You can't argue with her.

So you married her
and lived with her for 35 years

to avoid an argument?

Josie. Her name was Josie.

Damn it!

I'm sorry. I just…

I learned something
rather disturbing last night.

You know how that is when something
just shakes you to the core?



Where were we?

Last night I had the most
highly enjoyable sex possible.

This is __

I know. The lack of closet space
is really disheartening.

It's not the closet space.

My parents are getting a divorce.

I'm losing you.

What do you mean see other people?

Nick, I'm losing you.

Jesus Christ!

-I'm so sorry.
-It wasn't your fault.

She's British so
maybe they're most legal over there.??

Gwen. I don't believe this.

Kevin Helper from poetry class.

-I'm so sorry.
-No, it wasn't your fault.

Are you all right?

I'm having trouble
getting started on this book but…

Oh, you mean am I injured.
No, no.

We should exchange
insurance information.


How are you?

I'm great.

And change is good.
Change is healthy.

We have to keep moving
or just slid our turds??
and slowly bleed to death.

And yourself?

I teach high school now.

Do you live around here?

No. My friend Patrick does.


I don't need that.


Maybe sorting through a dead guy's possessions
would brighten your day.


Gweenie! Hi!

Happy thanksgiving.

Happy thanksgiving.

I can't believe I'm seeing you.

Thank you.

Well, you're busy.

How is Dean in the car?

I don't know.
He just likes to sit there

Says the music sounds better in there.
I don't know.

__ are you?

__ don't fight.
They just listen you to death.

I cannot believe you met Taffy.
I thought she was dead.

Just a drug addict for a while.

Chelsea! Love of my life.

Come here.

God, you're grown!

It's a nightmare.

They're happy.

And get this:

my mother is videodating.

Isn't that mentioned in the Bible
as one of the signs

that the world
is coming to an end?

She keeps
foisting applications on me.

Maybe that would be fun.
You don't know.


That's not the plan.

The plan is find
some temporary shelter

and finish the Taffy book
and then get out of L.A.

because —let's face it—
I belong in New York.

When will you stop with that
whole New York thing?

Are you okay?

I'm the surgeon,
I cut people!

You didn't need to do this.

He didn't.
I did most of it.

Your cat is trying
to get in.

I don't have a cat.

It's trembling.

This is not my cat.

Do you have any tuna?

I can't have a cat.

A woman living alone
with a cat is…

That's when you have 3 cats.

Definitely don't do
the three-cat thing.

I don't like cats,
of any quantity.

A very lovely little piano.

It was my grandmother's.

It's hand-carved by a man
named Faustus Daukintis.

They were in love but
it just wasn't meant to be.

She dumped him.

I played professionally at one time.

Which, of course, led to my career
in motion pictures.

If you need some cat food
I have plenty.

My cat eats like a Jew.

Excuse me?

All I know is the dearest man
in the world to me is a Jewish man…

That isn't even an expression.

Someone __ kitchen boxes
in the bedroom.

It's me, Glane.

Hi, Lane.

No, with a "ga", Glane.

Me and the band are throwing some

Thank you.
That would be lovely.

I'm afraid I have a previous

My limousine should be here __

Francesca hates cats.

You should feed your cat,
she's skinny.

Introduce me to your darling husband.

He's not my husband.

I'm not married.

A sweet girl like you?
Why aren't you married?

You're not serious.

Being married is not
necessarily the answer.

My parents __

Mime too.

Small world.

I just will never understand
by a darling girl…

It's the end of the 20th century
and we've reached this point

where people are frightened,
they're full of fright.

And besides, I was too young
to get married. For years.

And I went directly
from too-young to

"why aren't you married,
what's wrong with you"

There were those 10 minutes
in 1992 when I was exactly

the right age and weight
to be married but I've…

Forgot to set the alarm clock
and I

slept right through it.

The piano is out of tune.

I've never married either.

I suppose because nobody
ever asked me.

That's the other reason.

I met Irving when I was 21
but mother didn't approve of him.

And then he married someone else.

But I have never stopped
loving him.

I love him to this day.

What's going on here?
What's happening?

You said I could bring
some of my stuff over.

I meant
little personal cotton things.

Table goes here.

Hold it.

I'm putting my piano here.

You don't have a piano.

But I plan to acquire one
and I plan to put it here.


In the near future.

You just don't run out
and buy a piano.

You have to browse and compare
and shop and…

It sounds like a plan.

Nick, I am here
almost every night.

I know but this is…

You're moving in.

I'm not moving in.

These guys are movers.

-Are you guys movers?
-We're movers.

What's that supposed to mean?

I need a surface.

To go throughout my scrapbox
for the book??

write poetry

You write poetry?

I write all kinds of shit.

Just the other day
I wrote a great poem.

It was all about you.


You work hard at your blueprints
from morning till night

and hopefully we'll shack up
without one major fight

you like deconstructionism,
the new, not the old,

and you're great with a blowtorch
Or so I've been told

You're good with the clients
and also with sex

which is why you're the greatest
of all architects

That is something
that I would love to be able to do.

Actually someone tried to teach me.

But I could never…

so whatever I made
I just never ended

so I gave up.

That hat doesn't suit you.

You need something with a brim.

You should do something
about that stube.

Flowers or a bench.

Everyone here has done
something with their stube.

Right, Cinders?

What is this?

That's the song
they were playing on the radio

the first time
Irving kissed me.

Excuse me.

This sucks!

The development corporation
of Murdstone and Heep…

It's a total conspiracy,
like a JFK movie.

I can't believe this.

My boyfriend moves to Utah,
my restaurant gets condemned
and now this?

What does this mean?

I don't understand.

Some kind of hearing thing.
To challenge the eviction.

Hearing tomorrow night
at the high school.

I think we'd better go.

I wish I could go.
I'm just so behind on my book.

But you let me know what happens.

You do that for me?
Let me know what happens?

Sure. Whatever.


This is nice.
this is fun.

Seeing each other. But

there's something
that I have to say.

I know I'm behind in the book.

It's taking me a while
to find an approach. I promise you…

I think we should go to Paris.

Excuse me?

I think we need it.

We'll be surrounded by rude
French people.

It will bring us closer.

Gwen, will you look at this?
Is this funny?

Am I laughing?

You must be Bob.

I'm Beebee, I'm Gwen's mother.

You're kidding me!

We were on our way
to the __ .

This is Paul Pullman

Sit, please.

Paul and I were matched up together
to the video dating service.

It turns out —can you believe this—
Paul was at Brookman College

all 4 years I was there,
our paths never crossed.

Never crossed.

So, Bob, how was __

I've just asked Gwen
to go to Paris with me.

Bob, we're not going to Paris.

Of course you should go.
We should all go.

I've never been to Paris.

Oh, you would love it!

Maybe we could swim
to the wine country.

Okay, that's it.

I'm sorry.

It's really nice meeting you
in this very surreal kind of way.

Excuse me.

Do you know where Timo Heldenfeld
is right now? Shanghai.

This is extremely non-enjoyable.

Do you mind?
Some of us are trying to listen.

Ever have sex in a parking lot?

Thank you, Mr. Babcock.

And now we will open up
to members of the community.

Just a minute.
I wanna say something.

My name is Katz.

I'm leaving in La Fortuna
46 years.

Did I say 46?
Here, 47 years.

I moved in in 1948.

I'm 80 years…
81 years old.

Mr. Cats, if you could…

Mr Cats, if you please sit down.

Someone help Mr. Cats.

Are there any other comments
from the floor?

Hello. Testing.

Your name, please?

Miss Harriet May Kinney.

But I don't use the "May".

Irving said "loose the may"
and I did.

If you would limit your remarks,
Miss Kinney, to those concerned
with the building.

Certainly I'm concerned,
I live there.

I've lived there
since 1936.

I know everyone of my neighbors.

It's the courtyard with
the fountain, with the gold fish.

One of them passed away recently.

One of the neighbors,
the gold fish are thriving.

Oh, the parties we'd have.

Paper lanterns…

Ernst Lubitsch would come.
Louis Brooks and…

All I know is
I just can't sit home every night, mother.

This isn't Omaha.

Who is Louise Brooks?

She was a silent movie star
but that's not the point.

It isn't?

Excuse me, miss?

The point is legendary people
lived in La Fortuna.

That to destroy it
would be to eradicate

a part of our past,
a part of ourselves.

That La Fortuna has a story.

A story irrevocably
entwined with our own.

Indeed, the very history of the city…

Excuse me…

Who are you?

It's me, Gwen.

No, she wears a funny hat.

If I may, this is a waste
of the council's valuable time.

This building has value.
Doesn't it, Miss Kinny?

It holds precious secrets
about what this city once was

and what it inspired to be??

and it's held on
through change

and against incredible odds.
Against earthquakes…

You're that sweet girl
next door to me
that smokes too much.

…and we need to hear that story.

We need to tell it
because this city

can be a cold
cruel place.

That's the awful truth.

You can't tear it down.

Because I won't let you.

Gwen Moss,

you don't remember me.

John Hass,

used to be Johnny Hassenschmidt

I can't believe you're my councilman.

How come I never got to know you.

My parents,
they transferred me to private school.

Can I give you a lift here?

I'm from New York.

Good luck with this building thing.

Can I call you sometime?

God, yes.

How is the book coming?

It's terrible.

It's horrible. I'm completely blocked.

This is just a letter,
to the Times.

-Do you wanna hear it?

Once upon a time I needed a home.
And the day I found one

was the day I first beheld
the beautiful courtyard at La Fortuna.

She goes on and on about
she knows all her neighbors.

__ good thing.

What is her problem?

It is pretty rude
to read at the table.

She doesn't even sign her name.
She signs a friend of La Fortuna.

How do you know it's a she?

I just know. "Beheld", come on.

I can't believe
you're not coming with me.

Don't go.

I cannot be in town
for the holidays, no way.

It's non-enjoyable.

I can't get away.

I am so behind and
the schematic is insane.

I bet __ this whole Christmas
__ with mom and pop the second I leave.

I don't think so.

Right. I forgot your dad's dead.

I guess I just assumed he was.

Actually he's not. Yet.

He's just a drunk.

So is my mom.

So I don't speak to him ever.

__ to the family.

So you'll be okay.
All by yourself. Alone.

I'll be fine.
I'll figure something out.

The building sleeps, yet I can not.
Who talks like that?

I am sorry but this is
the 5th letter in 3 weeks.

I know on the surface they appear
to be extremely well-written,
entertaining letters

but this person is attempting
to sabotage us, I know it.

Forget the preservationists.
No one listens the preservationists.

On the other hand,
where is your site report?

I haven't filed one yet.

Dockin is scared to show his face
at La Fortuna.

Oh, yeah?
I'll tell you what.

I will pay a visit to that dump
right now.

She's not home.

I too have a previous engagement.
He'll be here any minute.

-It's beautifully preserved.
-Yes. It's held up well.

So many people…

So beautifully planned,
I always thought.

Designed by…

What was that woman's name?
I used to know it.

Oh, my God.

I think I know her name.

She was one of the first
woman architects in Los Angeles.

Is that a fact?

It all connects.

Most people don't notice.

I'm an architect.

We pay attention to
how things are made.

I could tell you stories…

A man lived right over there.

Fell like a ton of bricks
for the lady two doors over.


Both married, mind you.

I said "mother, this isn't Omaha".

Went out together one day
to buy fly paper,

never came back.

Still send me pictures
of the grand-children.

There he is.

-Hi. What's the matter?

Well, so…
Come here.

-You look beautiful.
-Thank you.


Do you smoke?

What? No.

As "none is possible".

What was that?

Oh, my god.
Are you all right?

What happened?

Excuse me.

__ in this place.

Look out!

-Are you okay?
-I'm fine.


The first step
is admitting it.

You're very sweet.
Very sweet with that old lady
who lives near you.

The character she is.

It's not like
she lives in a shoe or anything.

She's actually led a
fascinating life.

I don't think I've ever spoken
to one of my neighbors.

I'm too self-centered,
obsessed with my career…

I see myself running for major
some day.

That's just the beginning.

With me, my career comes first.

I guess not a lot of women
like to hear that.

So you can't eat cheese
of any kind?

The building sleeps,
yet I can not.


You know how something as insignificant
as those La Fortuna letters

can sometimes just shake you
to your core?


I don't believe it.

That's my ghost writer.
That's the woman who's
writing my book.

Who is she to make feel
this guilty?

Look over there and tell me
if that woman is looking at us.

No, she's not looking at us.

I know that guy
from somewhere though.


I'm sorry, what?

I Can't do this.

Can't compete with someone
you've never even met.

What are you talking about?

That woman who writes
those letters.

That's who you're thinking about
just now, isn't it?

That's who you're always
thinking about.

Isn't that Taffy
from One Big Happy Family?

Oh, god.

-I thought she was…
-Dead, I know.

I'm writing her autobiography.

You know Taffy.
Oh, my god.

And I cancelled on her??

I'd better go say something.
I think she saw me.

Francesca, hi.


Look, I'm really sorry about today.


I just met someone.

I am being thrown out
of my home.

I'm sorry but this book
means a lot to me.

I'm sorry too.

I swear I'll get to work on it.
I promise.

Bob wants you off the book.

I'm being fired?


You've never been fired before?

No. I've been fired a lot.

This just never gets any easier.

Excuse me.
Can I ask you something?

Yes, it's me,
I'm not dead.

Would you have me arrested
if I smoke one cigarette?

I have a really short
attention span.

My pattern was always

get them __ fall in love with me,
get bored, get really bored, leave.

But this guy,

he sees me for what I am
and he never even watched the show.

Can you imagine
how enjoyable that was to hear?

Men have always treated me
like I was Taffy.

And he's smart,
he's really successful…

My problem is he's kind of…

Emotionally unavailable.


His emotions require voice mail.

This is an incredibly
controlling person.

You should never use
tissue on your face, only cotton.

I won't phone a man who's not in therapy.
Life's too short.

Why? What does tissue do?

I think he's falling in love
with someone else.

Oh, honey.

Then he is crazy.

He is an idiot.

You are beautiful,
intelligent and interesting.

I know.

We can handle this.
We are women.

Just get him into therapy.

The guy you're seeing,
is he in therapy?

No, he is perfect.

Francesca, I know this is
none of my business now but

don't hire another ghost.

Write to yourself,
to your story.


But I never even went to college.
Or high school very often.

I think you'll find it
highly enjoyable.

-I'm __ for historical status.

Look at this.

See? I discovered something.

Something important.

Look who designed La Fortuna.

Sophia Monroe.

One of the first woman architects
in Los Angeles.

She literally changed the face
of this city.

-Nick, do you know what time it is?

Come to bed.

Honey, I can't.

The building sleeps,
yet I can not.


Good night.

Good night.


I like your other Bob better.


It is out of the question.

Why not? __
Who __

Anyway I wanna preserve
several pieces of the facade…

They want your original concept.
They're not gonna spend more money
so you can preserve __

We can at least attempt to preserve
some of the building.

You're beginning to sound like
this crazy preservationist.

She is not crazy.
She has a case.

Now she has a case?

Why, because some
dead movie stars lived there?

Because Sophia Monroe
designed it. Our teacher.

I warned you.

Do you remember what I told you?

I know this wasn't the plan but
there are things that you can't…

There are some things worth
holding on to

that connect us to the past
and to each other.

That show us who we are.

Sophia Monroe made a unique
contribution to our lives.

Since her death, she's at last been accepted
as one of the leading lights of modern architecture.

Therefore I urge this commission
to withdraw the demolition permit for La Fortuna.

And Louise Brooks lived there.

I brought you a kitty.
I was…

It's easier.
They'll keep each other company.

At least 2 isn't 3.

I'm sorry.

__ and I was supposed…

__ what to eat today,
one of those happy meals
or one of those non-fat, non-dairy…

Debbie, nobody cares.
Just eat it.

I need a cigarette.

I can't really stay.

Wait. I wanna tell you
about John.

Just wait.

You've got to hear the whole thing.
It's so amazing.

Finding him again after
all these years.

It's such a great story,
don't you think?

Forget it.

I'd better get going,
Dean's waiting for me in the car.


Because he is.

Why is Dean in the car?

The man is constantly in his car!

He happens to like
spending time in his car

but I can't talk to her
about Dean or Chelsea

Because you don't understand.

Women with children.

It's like a club
that I can't get into.

Like that cool group
in high school.

She tells me every minute
that she's gonna be moving to New York
like __

I am not moving to New York.

And I don't know why Dean
is always sitting in the car.

It's just the way it is when
you share a life with someone.

It's complicated.

You just wanna keep hearing
how perfect everything is.

But how could you bring me a cat?

I'm sorry, I'll take it back.

No, no, no.

Two is better.

You know,

you think I'm done because
I have these things that I have.

Like it's the end of the story.

And it's not.

It's not a story.

Good morning, Cheryl.




Just heard the bad news.

La Fortuna was granted
historical status.

No problem.

I just assumed that it was…

Don't worry so much,
you'll leave longer.

It says they granted it
historical status.

Doesn't say they can't tear it down.

Give me a cigarette.

-What about the preservation committee?
-Can't preserve shit??

They're all out celebrating.

Some announcement
in the paper.

But you can't believe
everything you read.

I let you know that I will fight this.
I'll do everything in my power.

But it's not
within your power, is it?

That something has come
to an end.

Don't look so sad
and think it was all your fault.

You're a dear sweet boy
to come here.

No, I'm not, believe me.

Yesterday my mother calls.
My father collapsed again.

It must be bad because
she asked me to come see him

and I said no.

So, you see?
I'm not sweet.

I don't even know why I came here.

Yes, I do.

I need to find the woman
who wrote those letters.


A friend of La Fortuna.
I have to speak to her.

It's important.

Sorry, I have to rest
for just a moment.

Just tell me her name.

I can't.

I can't see you anymore.

You know how mother feels about you.

It wouldn't be right
but I do care for you.

What do words can say?

Me too.

Saving this building is the only thing
I've ever done right in my whole life.

They cancelled __
against preservation.

The city government.
Is what I hate about my job.

You outvoted?


The vote is unanimous.

Where's my other shoe.

I was not voting against you,
I have certain commitments.

This is the part I hate.

This is the part __
actually hurts.

I believed in you.

I thought you and I were…

I'm sorry.

No, I'm sorry.

Some things can't be forgiven.

Some people can't be forgiven,
like you.

You're gonna crucify me
because I told you the truth?

About how I voted?
About who I am?

You said you believed in me.

You don't even know me.

what are you doing?

Come here.


I don't like to delay by the point
but at the same time __

Anyway there it is.

That's very disturbing.

What type of thing?

An elderly woman passed away
last night at La Fortuna.

Miss Kinney.

Miss Kinney.

This just does not help the mood
in the community.

A lot of __

That's his uncle Faustus.

He looks like you.

Go home.
I'll stay with him.

-Bye, honey.

I called the firm.

They said you went to see
your father.

I did.

Francesca, I did.

You don't speak to your father.

Well, today I did.

But it doesn't bear mentioning to,??
for instance me.

I didn't know that
I was gonna do it.

I don't get it.

I give you the opportunity
of a lifetime,

I give you myself,
which I…

which I swear
would never do.

So tell me,
what did I do wrong?

I watched you
when I was a kid.


I loved you.

I loved Taffy.

I was just afraid to tell you.

-You lied about that?

This is the longest hours
I've ever been in my entire life.

That's a perfect ending to __

Come on,
don't do this.

-Listen to me.
-No, you listen.

You're never gonna live up
to your potential.

You're never gonna have a piano.

You're self destructive
and make self destructive choices,

you're toxic and
I don't wanna be around you anymore.

You're just worthy to leave.

Shut up.

Isn't this about
when you always leave?

When the __ is getting hard
and you figure there's gotta be something
better or newer or easier…

I know, I've done it.
It's all I've done.

So neither of us
know how to do this.

So what?

So what?

Why can't we just
start from here?

I can't.

Why not?

Because it's gonna end eventually.
Everything does.

The show gets cancelled
and everybody goes through
separate ways.

Even if they're your family.

I don't want you to go.

Someday you'll thank me.

__ right?

Right Stinky?

Oh, my god.


Come here, baby.

It's okay, baby.

We're gonna go home.

So then it's true,
you're leaving.

I got something for you.


I quit smoking.

Who am I gonna talk to now?

-Wanna know how I quit?


I'll be right back.

First time?

Me too.

Gwendolyn Moss

Nicholas Daukintis

It's Lithuanian.

I know.

Most of us have appreciated
the perfection of the universe,

the animation of living things,
the action of the human mind

and the power of love.

These things all seem to denote
a dynamic lifeforce

that surges through everything
around us.

This force appears to direct
all things harmoniously but irresistibly

towards a natural,
definite, useful conclusion.

Is it hard to recognize in this lifeforce
a power greater than ourselves?

What happened to La Fortuna?

Well, it's gone
but that's not the point.

The point is
you're here.

And that's the story
of how your mommy and daddy met.