The Count of Monte Cristo (1964): Season 1, Episode 10 - A Challenge - full transcript

Fernand must face disgrace after allegations are made against his honor, and Albert challenges Edmond to a duel. To save her son's life, Mercedes must finally confront Edmond alone.

Are you wondering how healthy the food you are eating is? Check it -
I can't.
You mustn't tempt me, Monsieur.

But I must.

For in exchange you're going
to send this message for me?

He's sending.

My right-hand man is sending.
I've missed his signal.

I'll lose my job and my pension.

With 5,000 you could buy a nice little
house with two acres of ground.

Two acres?

And the interest on
the remaining 20,000

will yield you about 1,000 a year
for the rest of your life.

1,000 a year and two acres.
What am I to do?

Well, it's not very difficult.

What is it?

Just send the signal.

It's to the Minister of the Interior
in Paris.


There you are, you see it?
Won't take long.

Yes, but...

You shall have nectarines and peaches
and plums and all the rest.

Now you're rich.


- But at what a price!
- Listen, my friend,

I don't want to cause
you any remorse!

Believe me, when I tell you
you have done wrong to no man.

Indeed, you benefited mankind!

Lucien, please go!
I told you I wanted to see no one!

- How enchanting you look.
- Please!

Be calm! I will do nothing to hurt you.
Your friendship is far too precious to me.

If it were, you wouldn't
stay here another instant.

Forgive me, but I am not
here only on your account.

Then for what reason?

I call to see the Baron.

You know that my devotion
to you is unbounded.

And my passion for you is
limited only by the discretion

which society imposes upon us.

But the fact remains
that I have information

of the very greatest
importance for the Baron.

But you can't tell me?

It would be better
if I told him myself.

Lucien, you are speaking the truth?
You do have news for him?

News for which he'll be grateful
to me for the rest of his life.

My dear Baron,
I'm delighted to see you.

I came expressly to see you.

That's good. That's rich.
Did you indeed?

- Then let me tell you...
- No, Baron! Let me tell you!

I have information that could
affect your entire fortune.

You're a rich man now despite
the losses you've suffered recently.

I can restore those losses
and make you ten times a millionaire

What do you say?

- You have holdings in Spain...
- Of course!

- That's the greater part of your fortune...
- Be quiet, woman!

I was working late with
the ministery tonight

when a telegram
reached my desk.

That's a copy of it.
The king Don Carlos has escaped

the vigilance exercised
over him at Bourges

and has returned to Spain.

Barcelona has risen
in his favor.

Merciful heavens, I'm ruined.

Nothing of the sort.

This news will not be released until
tomorrow morning at the earliest.

Act now and you could become
the richest man in France.

Sell every bond you possess.

Forgive me my noble suspicions.

Accept the heartfelt
gratitude of an old man.

I love you like a son.

And so he sent me to treat
with the Turkish chief of staff.

the negotiations failed.

On my return to Janina,
I found my benefactor dying.

The Turks had treacherously used
my absence in the period of truce

to attack and destroy Ali Pasha.

Nevertheless, gentlemen, his confidence
in me remained secure to the end.

On his deathbed,
he reposed his favorite mistress

and her daughter to my care.

Naturally, Mr. le Comte,
you've fulfilled his wishes?

The Turks had plundered the town.

The woman and her daughter
had disappeared.

Have you any idea
of what became of them?

No, though I caused every inquiry to be
made, I fear they were sold into slavery.

Can you produce any witnesses to
the truth of what you have asserted?

Surely, Mr. President, the most
convincing proof of my innocence

is the total lack of any witness
who might have come forward

in support of this scurrilous
and lifeless attack on my honor,

which I utterly repudiate.

There is, however
contrary to your expectation,

one witness who will
come forward to testify.

In this letter the witness
claims to have special knowledge

of the events that
we've been investigating.

I take it, Mr. le Comnte,
you would have an objection

to this evidence being called...

- Who is this witness?
- The letter is unsigned.

The writer of the letter
is waiting in the lobby.

Call the witness in.

if you have true information

bearing on the case
of Mr. le Comte de Morcert,

this committee must know
your identity.

I must beg you therefore
to lay aside your veil.

you have stated in this letter

that you were an eyewitness
of the events at Jannina.

I was indeed, monsieur.

In what manner
did they concern you?

Upon them depended
my father's life.

I am Haydée, daughter of Ali Tepelini,
pasha of Janina,

and of Vasiliki,
his beloved wife.

Madame, can you provide us
with some proof of your identity?

I can, monsieur.

These documents must
be read by an interpreter.

In the meanwhile, would you,
madame, tell us in your own words

of your recollection
of the events at Janina?

At that time the armies of Ali Tepelini
were fighting the armies of the port.

The garrison of our town was
commanded by a French officer

Fernand Mondego.

My father reposed
such faith in this man

but when the opportunity arose

he sent him to treat with
the enemy at Constantinople

but Mondego made
his own terms with him.

He returned to Janina pretending
his mission had succeeded.

That same night he opened the gates
of the castle to the enemy.

And with his own hands
murdered my father.

My mother and I were
held by Turkish soldiers

and forced to witness the scene.

On Mondego's orders my father's
head was severed from his body

and carried off as a prize
to the Grand Seigneur.

Madame, you're asking us to believe
that a French officer

committed the crime
you have described?

All I have told you is the truth.

We were delivered into his hands,
and he sold us into slavery.

Can you prove it?

The proof is in the hands
of your interpreter.


These, Mr. le Presidant,
are the birth and baptismal

certificates of Haydée, daughter
of Ali Tepelini, Pasha of Janina.

- And the other documents?
- This one reads...

"I, Hasan Yan,
a slave merchant,"

"and furnisher of the harem
of His Highness,"

"acknowledge purchasing a young
Christian slave named Haydée,"

"rightful daughter
of the late lord Ali Tepelini"

"and her mother Vasiliki,
from General Fernand Mondego,"

"a French officer formerly
in the service of Ali Tepelini."

"This purchase was made
on His Highness's account"

"for the sum of 400,000 livres."
Signed "Hasan Yan".

And the last document?

A receipt signed by the Vizier
of the Grand Seigneur.

The girl Haydée was released
into the custody

of the Count of Monte Cristo.

Mr. le Comte,
what have you to say?

It is a wicked plot
contrived by my enemies.

Do you recognize this lady?

I have never seen
her before in my life.


You know me as I know you!

It was you who slew my father.

It was you who raised
his head upon a spear.

See, his blood is
still upon your brow.

I could not forget him
in a thousand years.

And if I did, there is still
the scar upon his hand.


Deep and livid.

It crosses the palm
of his left hand.

Mr le Comte, I must ask you
to show us your left hand.

My dear Count...

Thank you.
- Do sit down.

Thank you.

I think you served your purpose
very well, Major Cavalcanti.

That is reassuring.
Very reassuring indeed.

Everything is going splendidly.

In the whole of Paris, there are only
three topics of conversation.

And may I know
what they are?

Firstly, this business of Morcerf.
Have you not heard?

That a committee of his fellow
peers have convicted him

of felony, treason and outrage?
What else?

Our friend Danglars extraordinary
coup on the stock exchange.

They say that he's increased
his fortune overnight by...

30 million livres.

My dear Count, you know it all.
You simply wish to tease an old man.

Not in the least.

There might be something
that hasn't reached my ears.

You did mention three topics,
I believe.

The third scarcely
seems worth mentioning now.

But do mention it,

I was referring naturally to the forthcoming
of Mlle. Eugénie to my son.

Your son, Cavalcanti?

A mere slip of the tongue.
A manner of speaking.

And no, Cavalcanti,
it was neither.

- But I assure you.
- You cannot assure me.


I don't understand.
What are you trying to say to me?

Just this. The play goes on,
but your part is over.

I have no further use for you.


You will leave for Italy
first thing tomorrow morning.

No, you can't.

You'll need me
more than ever now.

It's the betrothal ceremony
at long last tomorrow night.

As Andrea's father
I must be there.

No you will not be there,

It is the perfect exit for you.

I see that you're in earnest.

- But what of Andrea?
- Benedetto, do you mean?

He must remain on stage
until the final curtain.

Here is your fare
back to Florence.

And 5,000 livres to lose
at the gambling tables.

Major Cavalcanti is leaving now, Bertuccio.
Will you see him to his carriage?

Good evening, Mr. de Morcerf.

We have not come here,

to exchange false
professions of friendship.

We are here to demand
an explanation of you.

At the opera?

It hardly seems the place
for such a demand.

We have sought you all day,
but when a man hides himself,

when he doesn't allow
anyone to enter his house,

on the pretext that he's in the bath,
at the table or in bed,

one must address him
wherever one can find him.

I'm not difficult of access, sir.

If my memory serves me correctly,
you were at my house yesterday.

Yesterday I was at your house,
because then I didn't know who you were.

Where have you come from, sir?
You do not appear

to be in the full
possession of your senses.

Providing I succeed in making you
understand that I will be revenged,

I shall be reasonable enough.

I do not understand, sir.
And even if I did,

your tone is too high.

Leave the box.

Well, well, I see you wish
to quarrel with me.

Let me give you some advice
and don't forget it.

It is a bad habit to make
a display of a challenge.

Display is not becoming
to everyone, Mr. de Morcerf.

I consider your glove thrown,
and will return it to you around a bullet.

Leave the box.

- What have you done to him?
- I?

Nothing, at least personally.

But there must be some reason
for this terrible scene.

He blames me
for his father's disgrace.

And are you to blame?

I am indirectly responsible.

What do you intend to do?

As certain as I sit here, I shall kill him
at 10h00 tomorrow morning.

I was the first
to discover Duprez.

I was the first to applaud him.

Come in.

Good evening, Mr. Beauchamp.
Take a seat.

Sir, I was just now here
with Mr. de Morcerf, as you saw.

I'm very glad to see, Mr. Beauchamp,
that you are more sober than he was.

Sir, Albert was wrong, I admit,
to display so much anger.

And I come on my own account
to apologize for him.

And having done so,
on my own account only,

you understand, Mr. le Comte,
I would add that I believe you

too honorable a man
to refuse me an explanation

of your connection with Janina.

You may believe what you please,
Mr. Beauchamp.

You will certainly get
no explanation from me.

There are occasions
when probity commands...

The Count of Monte Cristo

is commanded only
by the Count of Monte Cristo.

I do what I please,
Mr. Beauchamp.

And it is always well done.

Honest men are not
to be paid in such coin.

Honor demands guarantees.

I am a living guarantee.

Morcerf and I have blood in our
veins which we wish to spill.

That is our mutual guarantee.

Tell Mr. le Vicomte so, and that
tomorrow morning, before 10h00,

I shall see the colour of his.

Then it only remains for me to make
arrangements for the duel.

It's quite immaterial
to me, sir,

and it was very unnecessary to disturb me
at the opera for such a trifle.

Tell your client that even
though I am the insulted party,

I leave the choice of arms
entirely to him,

and without discussion,
without dispute,

I will accept whatever he may
choose, for I am sure to gain.

Sure to gain?

Certainly, sir, otherwise I would
not fight Monsieur de Morcerf.

I shall kill him,
I cannot help it.

Pistols then at 8h00
in the Bois de Vincennes.

Very well sir. And now that
this small matter is arranged

would you please leave
me to enjoy the opera?

And tell your friend Albert
to go home and get some sleep.

I came here as soon as I could
as I got your message.

- What have you to say to me?
- I promised to keep you informed.

You've discovered
the identity of Monte Cristo?

- He is Monte Cristo.
- I'm not interested in riddles.

My agents have been busy.

They've been as far afield
as Rome, Malta, Vienna.

His origins are obscure,
but his birth is registered in Malta.

Every available aspect of his career
has been checked and cross-checked.

My investigations have revealed

nothing even remotely sinister.

We're safe.

I hope so.

Why are you obsessed by doubts?

Any life so free of blame
strikes me as suspicious.

I believe you're still afraid.



Because Morcerf
stands condemned

on the evidence
of Monte Cristo's mistress.

I am used to searching
into the hearts of men.

There is something in Monte Cristo,
some devil of destruction lurking there.

Excellency, Mme. de Morcerf.

You will not kill my son.


By what name did you call me,
Mme. de Morcerf?

Your own, Edmond.

As mine is Mercedes.

I know no one of that name now,

Mercedes is dead.

I both live and remember.

I alone recognize
the man who came to Paris

calling himself
the Count of Monte Cristo.

As I know it was you who brought
disgrace upon Mr. de Morcerf.

Fernand, do you mean?

Since we are mentioning names,
let us remember them all.

You see?
I am not mistaken.

I have cause to say "spare my son".

Who told you, madame, that I have any
cause to be hostile towards your son?

Believe me, it was not Albert.

A mother has a twofold sight,

I followed him to the opera.
I know what happened.

Then you know that the son
of Fernand publicly insulted me.

For pity's sake listen to me.

My son blames you
for his father's misfortunes.

You are mistaken, madame.
It is not a misfortune.

It is a punishment.

It is not I who have struck him down,
but Providence.

What is Janina to you?

What injury has Fernand Mondego
done you in betraying Ali Tepelini?

It does not concern me madame.
You are quite right.

If I have sworn
to avenge myself

it is not on the General Mondego
nor on the Comte de Morcerf

but on the fisherman.


The husband
of the Catalan Mercedes.

Edmond, I am the only culprit!
If you must take revenge against me,

who had not the fortitude to bear
your absence and my loneliness...

Why was I absent?
Why were you alone?

Because you had been arrested
and were a prisoner.

Why was I arrested?
Why was I a prisoner?

- I do not know.
- You do not, madame.

At least, I hope not.

But I will tell you.

I was arrested and became a prisoner
on the day I should have married you.

A man named Danglars

wrote this letter which
the fisherman Fernand himself posted.

"The Procurer du Roi is informed"

"by a friend of the throne
and religion that..."

My god.

Because of this letter, you...

I was arrested, madame,
as you very well know.

But you do not know
how long that arrest lasted.

You do not know
that for 14 years

I rotted in a dungeon
of the Chateau d'If.

You do not know
that every day of those 14 years

I renewed the vow of vengeance
that I had sworn on the first day.

And that is why, on account
of the living Mercedes,

I have sworn to avenge
myself on Fernand.

And I have revenged myself.

Are you sure that Fernard
did this?

I am satisfied, madame, that
what I have told you is correct.

this is not much more odious

than a Frenchman by adoption
deserting to the English at Waterloo,

a Spaniard by birth
fighting against the Spaniard,

a mercenary in the pay
of Ali Tepelini

having betrayed
and murdered Ali Tepelini.

And compared with these things,

what is this letter
that you have just read?

A lover's deception,

which the woman who married that man
most certainly ought to forgive.

But not so the man
who should have married her.

The French did not revenge
themselves on the traitor.

The Spaniards did
not shoot the traitor.

Ali Tepelini, lying in his tomb,
left the traitor unpunished.

But I, betrayed,
sacrificed, and buried,

have risen from my tomb
by the grace of God to punish that man.

He sent me for that purpose.

And here I am.

Forgive, Edmond.

Forgive for my sake,
who loves you still.




When I call you Edmond,
why do you not call me Mercedes?



You're right.

That name still has its charms.

It is the first time for a long time
that I pronounce it so distinctly.


I must revenge myself.
I tell you I must.

Revenge yourself then, Edmond.

But let your vengeance
fall upon the culprits,

on him, on me,
but not on my son.

Edmond, my friend, all these
years I have adored your name.

Believe me, guilty as I was,
I too have suffered much.

You know the meaning
of the word.

I have seen him whom I loved
on the point of murdering my son.

What do you ask of me, madame?

Your son's life?
Well, he should live.


Thank you.

Now you are exactly
what I dreamed you were.

As I always loved you.

Just as well, perhaps, since I shall
not have long to be loved by you.

What do you mean?

I say, Mercedes,
since you command me,

I must die.

Why do you talk about dying?

You do not suppose
that publicly outraged

in the face of a whole theater,

in front of your friends
and those of your son,

challenged by a boy who will glory
in my pardon as in a victory?

You do not suppose for one minute
that I should wish to live?

But the duel will not take place.
You have forgiven him.

It will take place, madam.


But it will not be your son's blood
that will stain the ground.