Monday, July 25, 2016

what makes you do these crazy things

After Gregory Anton tells his wife, "My watch is gone," he then proceeds to find it at the bottom of her evening bag.

The piano-playing continues; the audience listens.

PAULA:  I didn't put it there!  I swear I didn't put --

Another guest turns from the row in front of the Antons -- "Would you be quiet, please?"

CLOSE SHOT:  Brian Cameron's face.

He notices this rustling disturbance in the vicinity of the Antons.

CLOSE SHOT:  Gregory and Paula Anton

She starts crying.  She's very distressed.  People are turning and looking.  The piano player stops.

GREGORY (in a low voice) -- Paula, please control yourself.  Being seen like this in public...

They get up to leave, Paula still crying, sobbing, gasping.

Lady Dalroy rises from her chair, and meets the Antons at the door.  Mr. Anton makes apologies and says good-night, and they exit.

MED. SHOT of the young lady Brian Cameron was sitting next to.  She watches all the "drama" then bursts out in an indignant whisper, "I think it's the most extraordinary --" and as she speaks she turns to look at Brian, but his chair is now empty.  She stops, mid-sentence.


EXT.  Antons' house - night.

Background:  the Antons' front door, gaslight post to the viewer's right; in foreground:  iron fence, bushes, tree branches, another gaslight, and a forked tree trunk.

Into the SHOT walks a man, his back to us, a top hat on his head.

Brian Cameron, from the front, tree at left.  Still in his evening clothes.  Fog mists the darkness.  Cameron watches the Antons' house.


Bricked wall of their house.  Shrubbery at Left and Right edges of the view.  Up on second floor, three lighted windows covered only by sheers, with the heavy drapes drawn aside.

The silhouette of Gregory Anton walks right to left past the center window.

INT.  Bedroom - night

Paula leans weakly against a bedpost, looking dejected.  Her husband strides back and forth, and around.  Paula is wearing a wrap, over her dress.

Overhead there's a light fixture with gaslights in ornate china cups.  The flames are undulating, throwing shadows on the wall like shimmery ocean waves.

GREGORY:  I've tried so hard to keep it within these walls, in my own house.  Now, because you would go out tonight, the whole of London knows it. 

If I could only get inside that brain of yours -- and understand what makes you do these crazy, twisted things.

PAULA:  Gregory, are you trying to tell me I'm insane?

GREGORY:  That's what I am trying not to tell myself.

PAULA:  But that's what you think, isn't it?   That's what you've been hinting and suggesting for months, ever since ...

GREGORY:  Since what?

PAULA:  Since the day I lost your brooch.  (she thinks back) -- Yes, that's when it all began.  (she frowns, and thinks again) -- No, it began before that.  The first day here, when I found that letter.

GREGORY:  What letter?

PAULA:  The one I found among the music -- from that man called Bauer.  Sergis Bauer.  Yes, I remember.

Gregory stops walking, and turns back toward her, fear in his eyes, as his face hardens.

GREGORY:  Yes, you're right.  That's when it began.  I can see you still, standing there and saying:  "Look, look at this letter," (a slight, terse chuckle) -- and staring at nothing.

PAULA:  What?

{Gaslight, MGM - 1944}


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