INT. DIMLY-LIT BAR – NIGHT
Two men, CAESAR and MARTY “DUCKS,” stand at the end of the
deserted bar, talking quietly, oblivious to the exotic dancer
grinding her pelvis on a pole in the middle of the small
stage. Body language and charisma tell us that Caesar is the
boss, “Ducks” his lieutenant.
It’s Peezee. Gotta be. He hates your
I don’t know.
Who else knew about the money? And
how did Peezee know they popped Tony
Cisco when we didn’t even hear about
it ‘til last night?
I don’t know.
What is so hard to understand here?
You said yourself Peezee was a
mamaluke and you couldn’t trust him.
Now suddenly you’re soft on the guy?
I just don’t think it was him.
Okay, I’ll bite. If not Peezee, then
(slowly rising to
his full height)
I think it was you, Ducks.
Caesar starts to walk away as the bartender, now holding a
sawed-off shotgun, moves closer to Ducks. The exotic dancer
splits in a hurry through a curtain at the back of the stage.
You gotta be kiddin’!
Caesar stops at the door where two of his soldiers have
appeared, holding AUTOMATIC WEAPONS.
Caesar, you know me! What kind of
fuckin’ idiot would I have to be to
try that shit with you?
A dead fuckin’ idiot.
As he walks out the door, the soldiers OPEN FIRE on Marty
“Ducks.” Caesar doesn’t look back.
PULL BACK TO:
The title credits come up on the made-for-cable series we’ve
been watching, “Little Caesar.” CLAPPING AND CHEERING from
INT. SING SING PRISON – NIGHT
Maximum-security prisoners are gathered around watching their
favorite show in the rec room. In the front row is PAUL VITTI,
former New York crime boss, and a couple of other wiseguys.
Garbage. Change the channel.
The WISEGUY gets up and starts switching channels on the TV.
A couple of CONVICTS in the back start to protest.
Hey! What’re you doin’, asshole!
Vitti turns and stares at them. They fall silent
Sorry, Mr. Vitti. Didn’t mean any
Vitti turns the page and sees a huge headline in the Post:
MOB SHRINK TELLS ALL. He gets up, agitated.
I’m going to bed.
Vitti stands up and heads back to his cell.
INT. CELL BLOCK – MOMENTS LATER
As Vitti approaches his cell, he sees a prison guard standing
by. His cellmate, EARL, a giant of a man, comes out of their
cell carrying his bedroll and a box containing his other
What’s goin’ on, Earl?
They’re transferring me.
Don’t know. Thanks for looking out
for me, Mr. Vitti.
Yeah. Take it easy.
He notices something in the box.
Hey, Earl. Is that my after-shave?
I’m sorry. I just grabbed stuff — I
didn’t know —
That’s okay. Keep it. Go ahead.
Thanks. See you around.
Earl exits with the guard. Vitti hesitates a moment, then
warily steps into his cell.
INT. VITTI’S CELL – MIDDLE OF NIGHT
The cellblock is quiet. A guard stops outside the darkened
cell, looks around to make sure no one is watching, then
pulls out a GUN with a SILENCER, reaches through the bars and
FIRES REPEATEDLY into Vitti’s shadowy form under the blanket.
Then he slips away as quietly as he appeared.
ON his exit we PAN DOWN TO Vitti, unhurt, curled up under his
INT. MEMORIAL CHAPEL – DAY
A deluxe casket flanked by elaborate floral displays and an
easel displaying a portrait of the deceased, Dr. Isaac Sobel.
Mourners fill the pews, standees at the back, an overflow
crowd. BEN SOBEL sits in the front row, staring at the
casket with his wife, LAURA, his son, MICHAEL, now a
teenager, BEN’S MOTHER, and her friend, DR. JOYCE BROTHERS.
At the podium, the RABBI is speaking.
And now I’d like to call on Isaac’s
son, Dr. Ben Sobel, who would like to
say a few words.
Ben rises and crosses solemnly to the podium.
It’s very difficult for me to talk
about my father, because in a sense
I’m talking about two men.
One, of course, is the public Isaac
Sobel, the eminent psychotherapist and
popular author known to millions of
readers around the world.
Laura, Michael and Ben’s Mother listen proudly to the eulogy.
The second Isaac Sobel is the private
man — my father — Dad. And for
those of you who knew him well and
knew our family — well, let’s face it
— my father was a psychotic, mind-
fucking prick. An arrogant, abusive,
A RINGING CELL PHONE interrupts him.
JUMP CUT TO:
still seated in the front row, daydreaming. The RINGING
CONTINUES as all the mourners and even the Rabbi discreetly
check their cell phones.
Then Ben realizes it’s his, fumbles for the phone in his
jacket pocket and answers it.
The mourners mutter.
INT. PRISON PAY PHONE – SAME TIME
Guess who, you fuck!
Ben turns away from Laura.
I have to, uh, take this.
This isn’t a good time.
Vitti is disheveled, his hair messed, his shirt buttoned
Not a good time? Let me explain
something to you. I’m in fucking Hell
right now. This is not a good time.
I can’t talk right now. My father
So what does that have to do with me?
Call me later —
Don’t hang up on, Sobel! They’re
tryin’ to kill me!
Ben hangs up.
CUT BACK TO:
He stands there for a long beat just staring, the DIAL TONE
BUZZING in his ear.
INT. SING SING – MESS HALL – NEXT DAY
Vitti and another WISEGUY pass through the cafeteria line
with their trays. Vitti now looks catatonic.
Ooh, they got tapioca. I love
(looks at Vitti)
You all right, Paul?
Vitti just stares, wild-eyed, actually drooling a little.
Can I have your tapioca?
A guard, the one who tried to kill him, watches Vitti from
his post. Then he nods to someone across the room.
COYOTE, a heavily-muscled and tattooed gang member, nods in
Vitti walks past the table where Coyote is sitting with other
tough Hispanic gang members.
Hey, Fredo! Or is it Guido?
His friends laugh.
Vitti stops and stares dumbly at them.
Just keep walkin’, Don Corleone.
There is a tense moment, then Vitti bursts out laughing.
Vitti laughs harder, strangely manic.
I said, shut up, bitch!
But Vitti can’t stop. He drops his tray of slop, splattering
food on the men. Coyote leaps to his feet and pulls a shiv.
You’re a dead man, jefe!
Coyote lunges at Vitti with the knife, but Vitti suddenly
whirls around, bashes Coyote in the face with his food tray
and bursts into song.
‘When you’re a Jet,
You’re a Jet all the way,
From your first cigarette
To your last dyin’ day…’
Prisoners and guards stare at him like he’s nuts.
Coyote stabs at him again, but Vitti dodges and smashes him
over the head with the tray.
‘When you’re a Jet,
If the shit hits the fan,
You got brothers around,
You’re a family man…’
You’re a dead man, jefe!
Coyote rushes him, but Vitti sidesteps and hits him in the
Guards move in from all sides. Vitti jumps up on the
tabletop to escape them.
(kicking at them,
‘I like to be in America,
Okay by me in America…’
The guards drag him down and cuff his hands behind him, then
carry him out stiff as a board.
‘Tonight, tonight, won’t be just
any night — ‘
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – LATER
A limo pulls up to an old, but well-maintained suburban
house, the family gets out and starts walking to the house.
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – FRONT PORCH – MOMENTS LATER
The family crosses to the front door.
I can’t believe he’s gone.
I can’t believe what you said about
him. Cold and withholding? You had
to tell everybody?
Nice. Why didn’t you just take a
swing at the casket?
Ben opens the front door and they go in.
INT. FOYER – CONTINUOUS ACTION
The family enters the foyer.
Okay, I might have strayed from my
notes a little. I’m dealing with a
lot of stuff here. Grief is a
Laura notices FBI AGENTS CERRONE and MILLER waiting for them
in the living room. Cerrone is an attractive woman in her
late twenties, wearing a dangerously-short skirt. Miller is
a clean-cut man in his thirties.
Dr. Sobel, I’m Agent Miller, this is
Special Agent Cerrone, Federal Bureau
of Investigation. We’d just like to
ask you a few questions, if we could.
Can I ask what this is about? We just
came from the cemetery.
We know this is a difficult time for
you, Dr. Sobel. Sorry about your
Thank you, I’m going to miss him
Ben gestures for them to sit.
Laura and Michael both look at him doubtfully.
I mean — there were issues — as, I
think, there are with any father and
son. He wasn’t especially warm —
Ben — once today? Enough.
No, I’m just saying, in spite of all
Agent Cerrone crosses her legs, a move that does not go
unnoticed by Ben and Michael.
— he was a great, great legs.
Dr. Sobel, you received a call this
morning from Paul Vitti?
Laura shoots him a look.
What makes you think Paul Vitti called
Because we monitor and record all his
phone calls from Sing Sing.
Then yes. He did.
That was him on the phone?
And you didn’t tell me?
Wow. Talk about withholding.
You told her —
You told her at the drop of a hat.
Agents Cerrone and Miller eye each other.
She’s with the F.B.I. She needs to
know these things.
Oh, I see. And I don’t. Why tell
Laura? She couldn’t possibly handle a
Did I say that?
You folks need a minute?
No, we’re fine.
If you don’t need me anymore, I’ll be
in the kitchen.
(to Agent Cerrone)
And two words of advice — from one
professional woman to another — Pant.
She’s grieving. It’s a process.
Oh, yes. Paul Vitti and I were
involved in some organized crime
activity a couple of years ago. I
mean, I wasn’t involved — not
‘involved’ involved — I was just
trying to help him therapeutically,
and some people tried to, uh, kill us.
No big deal.
Well, shortly after you spoke, he
seemed to have some kind of breakdown.
What kind of breakdown?
I think you’d better go up there and
see for yourself.
INT. SING SING INFIRMARY – PSYCH WARD – DAY
Vitti huddles in the corner of a bare, white, padded cell,
rocking, completely out of his head.
‘I feel pretty, oh, so pretty, I feel
pretty and witty and bright…’
INT. OBSERVATION ROOM – SAME TIME
Ben watches through a two-way mirror with the prison
psychiatrist, DR. CUTLER. They can hear Vitti through a
I’m treating him with Thioridazine,
300 milligrams, T.I.D. That seems to
keep him pretty calm.
That would keep a parade pretty calm.
He just keeps singing West Side Story
‘Tonight,’ ‘Maria,’ the balcony scene.
The balcony scene? Both parts?
Oh, yeah. Get him to do ‘Officer
Krupke.’ It’s really good.
INT. PADDED CELL
Ben and Dr. Cutler enter. Vitti doesn’t seem to notice.
‘Who’s the pretty girl in the mirror
there? What mirror? Where? Who can
that attractive girl be?’
Paul, it’s me. Ben Sobel. Paul?
(with a look to
What’s going on, Maria?
The rumble — it’s tonight! I have to
get out of here. I don’t want to die.
No, Chino, no!
Vitti’s jaw suddenly goes slack and he slumps in his seat,
Ben waves a hand in front of Vitti’s face. Nothing.
This is how it’s been. He sings for a
while, then he goes completely
Really. Can we take him to an
INT. EXAMINING ROOM – MINUTES LATER
Vitti sits inert on the examination table.
You already did a neurological work-
Yep. No tumors, no aneurisms, no sign
of stroke —
Ben slaps Vitti’s face lightly a couple times.
Completely catatonic —
He pulls on Vitti’s ears and nose. Vitti does not react.
Totally gone. Well, I don’t think
he’s smart enough to be faking.
Street smart, yes, but we’re talking
about an I.Q. just north of a bedroom
Ben checks Vitti out of the corner of his eye. No reaction.
Then Ben takes a sharp needle from an instrument tray.
So if I just stuck him with this
needle, he probably wouldn’t even
I don’t know. Try it.
Ben hesitates for a moment to see if Vitti will crack, then
He sticks the needle into Vitti’s shoulder.
(bursts into song)
‘Boy, boy, crazy boy, keep cool, boy!
Got a rocket in your pocket, keep
cool-y cool boy — ‘
INT. SING SING – CONSULTATION ROOM – NEXT DAY
Vitti is sitting at a table facing Ben. Dr. Cutler observes
from a chair in the corner.
Paul, we’re going to give you some
tests to assess your mental condition.
There’s no pressure — just answer as
best you can. Do I have your consent
to share the results of these tests?
Mommy’s mad at me because I made a
boom on the rug.
I’ll take that as a yes. Okay, I’m
going to show you ten cards, each
containing a picture of an inkblot. I
want you to look at each card and tell
me what you see.
I see you. I see him. I see a table.
Focus, Paul. You haven’t seen the
(hands him first card)
What does this look like to you? Take
Vitti looks at the wrong side of the card. It’s all white.
It looks like snow.
No, Paul, the other side.
Vitti turns it over and makes a face.
A bat. A big bat. Or a weasel.
Bat or weasel. All right.
And he’s got a little girl — no, it’s
a little boy — in his teeth — and
he’s shakin’ him and shakin’ him
‘cause the kid didn’t wipe himself
good — and the kid is screaming
because the bat-weasel ripped out his
throat and the blood is shootin’ out
of his neck vein.
That’s the blood.
Doctor Cutler looks worried.
See anything else?
Just the pussy with the teeth.
(making more notes)
Pussy with teeth. Next card.
Vitti is literally trying to pound a square peg into a round
VITTI AND BEN
Now try repeating the numbers
backwards. For instance, if I was 1-
2-3, you will say 3-2-1. Okay, 7-3-8.
Try again. 7-3-8.
THEMATIC APPERCEPTION TEST
Vitti studies a vague and ambiguous photograph of a man
standing beside a bed with a sleeping woman and child on it.
Just tell me what you think is going
on in this picture.
This is a picture of a guy — nice,
hardworking guy — comes home and
finds out his wife’s been screwin’
this midget while he was out of town.
Screwing a midget. And how does the
I think he works over the midget for a
while, then he blows ‘em away.
The wife or the midget?
Trick question, right? Both of ‘em.
Okay, Paul. Last test. In this one,
I’m going to start a sentence and you
complete it any way you want to.
Ready? ‘I get
angry — ‘
No, you’re supposed to complete the
I did. I said ‘yes.’
I wasn’t asking if you agreed or
disagreed; it was more like, ‘I get
angry when — ‘
Well, that about does it for me.
INT. U.S. ATTORNEY’S OFFICE – DAY
Ben meets with RICHARD CHAPIN, the U.S. Attorney for the
Southern District of New York.
Based on his symptoms and the test
results, I’d say brief psychotic
disorder — if it persists, possibly
schizophreniform disorder. And Dr.
Cutler agrees with my diagnosis.
So he’s crazy?
Dr. Cutler? No, he’s annoying, but —
Not crazy. At least not permanently.
In certain people, continuous exposure
to an extremely stressful situation —
soldiers in combat, for instance,
disaster victims, a hostage situation,
or being locked up in a maximum
security prison with someone trying to
kill you — it can produce a temporary
A day, a week, up to a month — if the
precipitating stressors are removed.
Which means he’s not going to get any
better while he’s still in the can.
He could get worse. He could
deteriorate to the point where he’d be
Then I’d say he’s got a real problem,
because he goes before the parole
board in four weeks.
You think they’ll let him out?
Oh, yeah, I’m sure they’ll want to
release a major Mafia figure who’s now
totally deranged on top of it.
Well, couldn’t you release him to a
halfway house or some place where he
could get some decent treatment?
Based on my earlier work with him, I
don’t think he’s dangerous, and I
think he was making a real effort to
You do, huh?
(thinks for a
Okay. Then I’ll tell you what. I’m
gonna release him into your custody.
Mine? Me? No, this is a bad time for
me. My father just died — and I’ve
got this bulging disc in my neck —
and we’re redecorating, which is a
total nightmare. I can’t —
You want to see him killed in prison?
No, of course not.
Or sent to a facility for the
Then he’s all yours. I’m going to
talk to the Bureau of Prisons and get
you certified as a temporary federal
What? I can’t be an institution.
You’ve got thirty days to get him in
shape for his parole hearing. That
means sane, sober and gainfully
employed. But let me warn you,
Doctor. If he fucks up in any way —
if he flees, or if I find out that
this whole thing was just a setup so
he could get back on the street and
return to a life of crime — I will
hold you totally responsible, and I’ll
see that you are stripped of your
license and prosecuted to the full
extent of the law. Are we clear?
Yes. We’re clear.
You still want him?
(long beat to
EXT. SING SING – FEW DAYS LATER
The gate opens and Ben coaxes Vitti outside. A guard watches
Okay, Paul — this way.
Vitti comes out carrying an overnight bag, walking like a
zombie. Ben leads him over to the car and opens the door for
him. Vitti keeps walking, passing the car.
This way, Paul. Over here. Here we
Ben helps Vitti into the car. One of Vitti’s legs is still
Leg, Paul. Leg up.
Ben lifts Vitti’s leg into the car and closes the door.
INT. CAR – MOMENTS LATER
Ben STARTS the CAR and pulls away with Vitti still slumped in
his seat. Once out of sight of the prison, Vitti straightens
and turns on Ben, suddenly lucid.
You fucking son-of-a-bitch! Where the
fuck do you get off sticking me with a
I knew it! I knew you were faking!
You used me to get you out of prison!
Took you long enough. I was singin’
West Side Story for three fuckin’
days. I’m half a fag already.
What are you talking about?
I call you to say somebody’s trying to
kill me and you hang up on me?
I was at the funeral home!
You’re my fuckin’ doctor!
My father died!
Me me me me! He’s dead! Get over it.
Are you hearing yourself?
I’m deeply sorry for your loss.
Yeah, I can see how touched you are.
What’s the difference? You hated him
I loved my father. I’m feeling a lot
of grief right now.
I’m not sensing it, but if you say so.
Ben nervously pops a pill and swallows it.
Decongestant. I’m getting over a
cold. All right, what’s going on?
Who’s after you?
I don’t know — take your pick. Could
be my old family, or could be the
Rigazzis. Ever heard of Lou Rigazzi –
– Lou ‘The Wrench’?
Why “The Wrench”?
Because he twisted a guy’s head off
Off. Fuckin’ Calabrese — animals.
And comin’ from me you know that’s a
I’m sure they’d be flattered. So —
The feds are really putting the
pressure on. The families are
fighting each other again — what’s
left of ‘em. It’s the fall of the
fuckin’ Roman Empire. It’s
World War Three out there.
So what does that have to do with you?
They knew I was gettin’ out soon and
the last thing anybody wants to see is
me getting into it on either side.
Maybe if you just explain to
them — that you’re out of it now,
that you’re starting a new life —
Yeah, they’ll probably want to throw
me a party and give me a gold watch.
Trust me — nobody’s lookin’ forward
to me being out.
You are, aren’t you?
Me? Oh, yeah, my future looks real
Ben can’t believe what he’s gotten himself into.
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – LATER
Ben and Vitti pull into the driveway and get out of the car.
Want to grab your stuff?
I’m not gonna be here that long.
Jelly’s pickin’ me up in an hour.
Paul! I don’t think you understand.
You’re in my custody. I could get in
a lot of trouble if you screw up.
Don’t worry about it. I’ll call you
Oh, no. You want to go back to Sing
Sing? Thursday’s meatloaf night. I
can have you back there in no time.
The U.S. Attorney was very clear. You
stay with me; therapy every day; you
can’t leave the area without
What are you, my father now?
And you have to get a job as soon as
you’re well enough, which is now. So
are you coming in with me or do I have
to make a phone call?
Vitti relents and grabs his stuff from the back seat.
I’m comin’. Some fuckin’ life this is
He follows Ben up the stairs.
INT. U.S. ATTORNEY’S OFFICE – LATER
Chapin is conferring with another U.S. ATTORNEY, DAVIS, and
Agents Miller and Cerrone.
You really think Vitti is crazy?
Yeah, he’s about as crazy as I am.
Think about it. Locked up, he was
absolutely no use to me. But back on
the street, Vitti’s still powerful
enough to pose a threat to both
families. It’s like throwing gasoline
on a fire.
If we can use Vitti to escalate this
war, we might just end up putting them
That’s if he goes back to his old
If? People like Paul Vitti don’t
change. This guy’s been a menace to
society since he was twelve years old.
Being a criminal is all he knows.
He’s gonna head straight for trouble.
Then all we have to do is sit back and
pick up the pieces. We could get
twenty, maybe even thirty indictments
next time the grand jury convenes.
You know, Giuliani started this way.
You running for mayor?
Could happen. Just stick with Vitti.
INT. SOBEL HOUSE – LATER
Ben and Laura are in the kitchen, cleaning up the dinner
dishes. Ben is wearing an apron that says “To Heck with
Housework!” and a pair of Playtex rubber gloves. Laura is
angrily muscling dishes around.
How could you? How could you bring
him here? That —
— mobster — in my home — eating off
(looking at the plate
in her hand, disgusted)
She scrubs the plate with manic energy.
I didn’t have a lot of choice.
Oh, there’s a law that says you have
to bring a gangster home?
I told you. He’s in my custody. I’m
a federal institution.
You should be in an institution. Why
couldn’t he just go home?
His wife and kids aren’t here.
They’re in Ohio.
Ohio! Sure. Everyone gets to be in
Ohio except me.
His life was threatened and he didn’t
want to endanger his family.
How thoughtful! What about
endangering our family?
I think my teeth are loose. Feel my
Honey, your teeth are fine. I know
it’s an imposition, but what could I
do? I didn’t want him here. They –
You didn’t want him, I didn’t want
him, but here he is!
She looks up and jumps when she sees Vitti standing there.
Here he is!
Somebody said something about coffee.
That was you. You said you wanted
So what’s the holdup?
Why don’t you make your friend some
coffee. I’m going upstairs to take a
long bath and hopefully drown.
Laura smiles at the two men, then exits.
You’ll have to forgive her. She’s
usually a great hostess.
I understand. She’s uncomfortable.
The whole situation’s a little awkward
with me bein’ here — but let’s face
it, Emily fuckin’ Post she’s not.
Emily fuckin’ Post. Well, that
explains why she rarely used her
Listen, I got a friend coming over. I
didn’t want you to be surprised.
What kind of friend? Because if it’s
‘The Wrench,’ or ‘The Power Drill’ or
any other kind of
Not that kind of friend. It’s a
They won’t stay late, will they?
(stares at him)
Are you really that pussy-whipped?
I’m not — this has nothing to do with
I heard her busting your balls.
We were having a disagreement. A
certain amount of conflict is normal
in a marriage.
Or you’re pussy-whipped.
Good night, Whippy.
(calls after him)
Remember, this is only temporary.
Oh, really? I didn’t hear you the
tenth fuckin’ time.
INT. UPSTAIRS HALLWAY – MOMENTS LATER
Ben knocks on Michael’s door and walks in without waiting to
INT. MICHAEL’S ROOM – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Michael is sitting up in bed reading.
Mike, can we talk for a second?
I know the last few weeks have been
kind of tough with Grandpa — dying
and everything — and it might’ve felt
to you like I didn’t have time for you
or I didn’t care about how you feel.
No, it didn’t.
Good. Because I want you to know that
you can talk to me about stuff and
that I can really listen and
understand what you’re going through.
I do, Dad.
And if I seemed a little hard on
Grandpa, it’s just that your
grandfather was a hard man in a lot of
ways. He wanted everything done his
way and sometimes I just felt like
nothing I ever did was good enough. I
don’t want it to be that way with us.
And you know, at times like this we
all might start questioning our own
mortality and you might be thinking
how devastated you’d be if I died.
No. Not really.
That’s good. Good talk. And I
realize it’s all a little hectic right
now, but this Paul Vitti thing is only
Oh, really? I didn’t hear you the
tenth fuckin’ time.
That’s not funny. Good night,
Good night, Whippy.
Ben exits, shaking his head.
The moment he’s gone, the rumpled blankets next to Michael
shift, and a CUTE, PUNKY 16-YEAR-OLD GIRL emerges from hiding
under the comforter.
I gotta get home. What was that
I have no idea. Parenting stuff.
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – NIGHT
The suburban street is dark and quiet and all the lights are
off in the house.
Ohhhhh! Ohhhhh, Paul!
INT. MASTER BEDROOM – SAME TIME
The room is dark. We PAN UP the foot of Ben and Laura’s bed
and find them both wide awake staring straight up at the
Ohhhh, God! Oh, oh, oh, oh!
This has to be some kind of record,
don’t you think? It’s been like forty
How long are you going to let them go
Let them? How much longer can he go?
Another twenty minutes, I’m either
breaking it up or calling the Guinness
Book of Records.
The MOANING shifts into low gear, more guttural and bestial.
Oh, give me a break. She’s got to be
faking. Nobody sounds like that.
That’s not entirely true.
Okay, sometimes you do sound like
The O.S. MOANING kicks up another notch. Laura rolls over
and jams her pillow over her ears. Ben growls, exasperated.
INT. MICHAEL’S ROOM – SAME TIME
Michael’s girlfriend is gone. He has his bedroom door open a
crack and he’s standing there holding a small tape recorder
and smiling broadly.
Ah, ah, ah, ah…!
EXT. STREET – SAME TIME
Agents Cerrone and Miller sit in a sedan with a small,
sophisticated-looking microphone trained on the Sobel house
just down the street. They hear the high-pitched MOANING.
Miller gives Cerrone a look.
Oh, come on. Nobody sounds like that.
INT. HALLWAY – MOMENTS LATER
Ben takes a deep breath and knocks sharply on the guest room
door. The heavy MOANING STOPS. After a moment, Vitti
appears wearing only a bathrobe. Ben can see the beautiful
SHEILA sitting naked on the bed.
I have a 17-year-old son.
So let him get his own fuckin’ girl.
Can I talk to you, please?
Actually, I’m right in the middle of
Sheila starts to light a cigarette.
Miss? Excuse me. There’s no smoking
in this house.
INT. MICHAEL’S ROOM – SAME TIME
Michael freezes, about to light a cigarette himself.
INT. LIVING ROOM – MOMENT LATER
Ben comes down the stairs with Vitti.
What do you think you’re doing?
Minding my own fuckin’ business, like
you should be doin’.
Well, it’s a little hard with the live
sex show going on in the guest room.
I’ve been in prison for two and a half
years. What am I supposed to do?
Go to a hotel.
That’s what I wanted to do, but you
told me I had no choice — it was
either here or Sing Sing.
I’m not trying to punish you. These
aren’t my rules, but I have a
responsibility here. Besides, I
thought you might like a nice home-
cooked meal after being in prison that
Yeah, that’s what I’ve been jerkin’
off about for eight hundred
consecutive nights — a nice home-
(making a jerking
Ohhhh, tuna casserole.
That girl is not staying here.
I think you’re jealous.
Oh, yeah, I’m really jealous.
I didn’t hear nothin’ comin’ out of
We don’t think it’s necessary to wake
the neighbors every time we have sex.
Hey, if you’re really quiet, you might
be able to do it without even wakin’
up your wife.
Ben looks curiously at Vitti.
I told her if I wasn’t back in two
minutes to start without me. I gotta
Vitti heads back upstairs.
This is not a good start, Paul.
INT. DINING AREA – NEXT MORNING
Laura and Ben are hosting a brunch for the out-of-town
relatives. Laura offers a basket of bagels to a seated,
Aunt Ester, I’m so sorry we had to put
you up at the hotel. We wanted you
here with us, but we had an unexpected
She glares at Ben.
Your father always had room for us.
(mutters to Laura)
Next time I lose a parent, I’ll be
sure to reserve the guest room.
A DOOR SLAMS somewhere, then Sheila storms into the room
sobbing, her hair askew, tucking her blouse into her skirt.
Go to hell, Paul! You just go to
Go ahead! Get out of here, you crazy
Vitti charges into the room, his robe open. From the
reactions of everyone in the room, it’s clear he’s not
wearing anything under it.
Go back to turning tricks in Jersey
for all I fuckin’ care.
Sheila exits and slams the front door. Vitti sees everyone
staring at him. He closes his robe.
How’s it goin’?
Oh, we got food. Good.
Vitti heads for the buffet.
Vitti bellies up to the buffet, stepping between an older
couple. He eyes the food disdainfully.
Oh, great. Jew food. Who do you have
to fuck to get some bacon around here?
The woman reacts in horror.
Not you, I’m guessing.
(snags Vitti’s arm)
Why don’t we go to my office? I’ll
make you a plate.
INT. BEN’S OFFICE – MOMENTS LATER
Ben and Vitti enter. Vitti still in his robe.
What is it with your relatives? They
tend to overreact quite a bit.
I know. All you did was flash
everybody in the dining room.
So? From the look of ‘em, some of
those broads haven’t seen the old
salcicc’ in a long time. It’s good
Well, when the paramedics revive my
Aunt Goldie, I’ll be sure to ask her.
Vitti starts for Ben’s chair.
Ah ah ah!
He points Vitti to the sofa and takes his own chair.
So what are you going to do, Paul?
What do you mean?
With your life.
First I’m gonna find out who’s tryin’
to kill me. I’m a target. Somebody
could shoot right through that window
— blow my fuckin’ head off.
Ben sees that he’s in the line of fire, gets up and moves out
of the way.
Okay, that’s a priority. Have you
thought about what you’re going to do
Yeah. I’m too big for a jockey so
I was thinkin’ maybe a hairdresser.
They’ll call me Mr. Paul.
Come on. There must be something you
like to do.
I like hitting a guy on the head with
a baseball bat.
Oh, sporting goods. We’ll check the
want ads tomorrow but don’t get your
hopes up. Anything else?
Shylocking, bookmaking, unions, the
Who are you?
Who am I? I’m the guy who’s paying
you $150 an hour to play these stupid
fuckin’ games. You know who I am.
I know that. I mean what are you?
What do you mean, ‘What am I?’
I just want to know how you see
You’re making me very fuckin’ nervous.
Just answer the question. What are
I’m the boss.
Really? The boss of what — Jelly?
You’re not the boss of me. So what
are you the boss of?
You, you’re good. I see what you’re
What am I doing, Paul?
You’re pissing me off is what you’re
doing. Look at me. It’s starting
again, the anxiety.
You’ve spent your whole life becoming
who you are and now you can’t be that
anymore — that’s gotta be scary. If
you’re not Paul Vitti the mob boss,
who are you?
Vitti is at a loss.
Well, let’s think. When you were a
kid, What did you want to be?
I don’t know. Who remembers that
You must’ve wanted to be something
when you were little — fireman?
Yeah, maybe. What did you want to be?
We’re not talking about me.
Fine. I wanted to be a philatelist.
You wanted to look up people’s
assholes all day?
No, Paul, I believe you’re thinking of
a proctologist. I wanted to collect
rare and unusual stamps.
You must’ve been a lot of laughs when
you were a kid. Lonely, huh?
Oh yeah. Big time. So what did you
want to be?
You afraid to tell me?
Yeah, I’m afraid.
Then tell me. I’m not here to judge
Okay. When I was really little —
like seven or eight — maybe I wanted
to be a cowboy.
A cowboy. Really?
Yeah. My father gave me a cowboy
suit — you know, the vest, the
chaps, the cap guns — the whole
thing. And he used to take me up
to my uncle’s farm in New Jersey
and lead me around on this pony.
Yippee-i-o. You happy now?
So you watched cowboy movies and TV
shows with your father.
Everybody. The whole family. My
father loved ‘Gunsmoke.’
Marshal. So who were your favorite
This is so fuckin’ retarded.
All right. Gene Autry, Roy Rogers,
the Lone Ranger —
Interesting. They’re all good guys.
Yeah, I guess.
No, that’s important. You didn’t want
to be the bad guy. You wanted to be
So what happened?
I don’t know. Nothing happened.
So why didn’t you become a cowboy?
I lived in East Harlem! I joined a
street gang when I was 12 and that was
Something else happened when you were
Something that made you very sad?
The Dodgers moved from Brooklyn to
L.A. Everybody took it pretty hard.
We playin’ a guessing game here?
Paul! Your father was murdered!
Right in front of you. Remember?
Do I remember? I think about it every
fuckin’ day of my life. What’s that
got to do with it?
It’s got everything to do with it. He
gave you the cowboy suit. With a
white hat. He was in the mob, but he
wanted you to be a good guy, didn’t
Vitti starts thinking about his father and starts to weep.
Yeah. He did.
He didn’t want you in the gang life.
He only did it himself so you wouldn’t
have to. He was trying to buy you a
better life than his.
He always said he wanted me to go to
college. I didn’t even finish high
He really starts sobbing now.
Well, Paul, this could be a great
opportunity for you. You’re right
back where you were when you were
twelve. You’ve got some big choices
Vitti fights to regain control.
Okay. Okay. That’s enough of that
It’s not shit, Paul. My point is,
when you’re a child, you think
anything is possible. Wouldn’t it be
great to think like that now?
(retreating back into
Yeah, just sprinkle some fuckin’ fairy
dust on me.
I’m just saying you’ve got to keep
an open mind and explore some new
possibilities. Try some different
things — maybe you’ll connect with
one of them. There’s a career
counselor I work with. I can call
him for you. He may be able to help
you find a job.
You mean working for somebody? I’m
supposed to take orders from some guy
who used to get me coffee?
(starts sweating and
I can’t do that. It’s not right.
It’s not me.
How do you know unless you try?
Suddenly one of the WINDOWS behind Vitti SHATTERS.
Ben dives for cover. Silence — then another RAP on the
window. Ben looks out and sees JELLY in the back yard,
tossing stones at the window.
Hiya, Doc. Sorry about the window.
Ben waves him around to the side door.
INT. DINING AREA – MOMENTS LATER
Jelly is loading up a plate of food from the buffet, talking
to the elderly relatives. Laura stares at him.
I love lox and bagels. I dated a
Jewish woman once. Actually, she
might have been the love of my life,
but my mother broke it up.
She was always hockin’ me a chinick
about the madels. A wonderful woman,
my mother, but she fuckin’ hates the
(noting mountain of
food on his plate)
More smoked salmon? Don’t be shy.
Jelly — what are you doing here?
Makin’ new friends. How’s it going,
Doc? I brought some clothes for Mr.
(indicating the door)
That’s great, Jelly. I’d love to
catch up with you — outside.
You got it.
Thanks, Mrs. S.
So long, everybody. Ess gesunterhait.
Jelly and Ben exit.
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – MOMENTS LATER
Ben and Jelly walk out to the driveway where Jelly’s Buick is
So. Long time no see. You look good,
(trying to be pleasant)
And you, Jelly — you look —
(can’t find words for
how he looks)
Did you get a haircut? I thought you
were in prison.
It would appear not.
How’d you get out?
New trial. The evidence in my first
trail was, you know, tainted. Turns
out two of the witnesses against me
changed their minds — and the third
one, he died after a short illness.
What did he have?
Gunshot wound to the head.
That’s not an illness.
Yeah, but it is short.
Vitti, now dressed, comes out of the house and crosses to the
Where are you going?
I got stuff to do.
What kind of stuff?
(as he gets into
Calm down. I’ll be back.
You can’t leave without my permission.
Oh, yeah? Watch me. Drive, Jelly.
Jelly STARTS the CAR and slowly backs out of the driveway.
Ben runs after the car, talking to Vitti through the open
That’s it, Paul. I forbid you to go.
Stop sweating, Doc. I’ll be back.
Vitti puts the window up.
If you screw this up, Paul — Paul!
The car pulls away.
Shit! Shit, shit, shit!
Ben turns and sees his Aunt Goldie on the porch.
So, the fat one — he’s single?
INT. KNIGHTS OF PALERMO SOCIAL CLUB – DAY
Soldiers lounge at the bar, keeping a respectful distance
from the capos seated at a table in the rear. All eyes turn
as the door opens and Vitti enters.
SAL MASIELLO, Vitti’s old consigliere rises and warmly but
warily welcomes Vitti back into the fold.
Paulie, great to see you! You’re
lookin’ good, kid. Lookin’ very good.
Jelly, how are ya?
Vitti embraces him and they sit down with the others.
So, Paul, we heard you had some
trouble while you were away. Some
No, I’m okay. It was an act. I had
to pretend I was nuts. There were
people watching me all the time.
Doctors. They never woulda let me out
if they thought I was normal.
So you ain’t crazy?
You want to see crazy? Just tell me
who’s trying to kill me. I’ll show
We’re in a war, Paul — nobody’s safe
right now. The Rigazzis are walkin’
all over us. We got next to nothing
coming in, and I don’t have to tell
you, you don’t buy a lot of muscle
without money these days. We need
you, Paul. The family needs you.
I can’t do it, Sal. I’m out of it.
Come on, Paulie. Nobody used to do
the big jobs like you. Air France–
they’re still talkin’ about it.
Sal, even if I wanted to — the feds
After your father died, I always
treated you like my own son. You know
He was a good man. I still miss him.
Yeah, I do too.
So you’ll think about it. For me,
Yeah, okay, I’ll think about it.
Hey, what is this — a fuckin’ funeral
here? You just got back from college
for Chrissakes. We should be havin’ a
party for you.
Hey, Nino, give everybody a round
here. We gotta drink to Paul.
I can’t, Sal. I gotta go talk to the
I understand. No problem. It’s good
to have you back, Paul.
Don’t forget what I said. We’re
countin’ on you.
Vitti gives his old friend a pat on the back and exits.
EXT. LOPRESTI HOUSE – SAME MORNING
Jelly pulls up, Vitti gets out and strides up to the front
door of a nice home on Staten Island and RINGS the BELL.
INT. ENTRY HALL – CONTINUOUS ACTION
The door is opened by EDDIE DEVOL, early thirties, dark and
‘Yeah, what?’ That’s how you answer
You got a problem with that?
Vitti punches Eddie in the mouth, sending him sprawling back
into the living room. Several other bodyguards are watching
television, caught off guard by Vitti’s sudden entrance.
Where is she?
In the kitchen, Paul.
INT. PATTY’S KITCHEN – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Vitti enters. PATTY LOPRESTI, mid-forties, still sexy even
in an apron, is mixing cake batter in a bowl with an electric
Paul — what a nice surprise.
How’s it goin’, Patty?
Good. It’s good. Give me a kiss,
Patty hugs and kisses him, taking the opportunity to pat him
down for a weapon or a hidden wire.
Sorry to hear about Carmine. He was a
Yeah. You live with a person twenty-
one years, then one day they’re
pulling his torso out of the river.
I’ll bet — especially with all the
talk about you being the one who put
That’s why I try not to gossip, Paul.
It’s ugly. Just a sec.
(screaming to ceiling)
Michelle! Teresa! It’s ten-thirty!
Stop fucking around and get ready for
It’s hard being a single parent and a
Yeah, I’m sure you’re very busy.
The pressure — it’s awful. For
instance, a lot of people think, now
that you’re out, you’re going to try
and take the family back from me. But
I said, no, Paul would never do that.
By the way, how are Marie and the
kids? Still in Ohio? In Shaker
Heights? At 1356 Locust?
Vitti explodes, reaches across the counter and grabs her by
You even go near them, you crazy bitch
Don’t make me call my guys in. You
may need the shit kicked out of you,
but not in here. I just mopped.
Vitti lets her go.
flushed and a little
Wow. Have you been working out?
Yeah, I been workin’ out who’s trying
to kill me. I’d love to hear your
thoughts on that.
It’s a dog-eat-dog world out there.
Nobody’s gonna be safe unless we can
end this thing with the Rigazzis.
So then you didn’t have nothin’ to do
Oh, Paul. You actually think I would
kill you? All the years we’ve known
each other — the Christmas parties,
the fun times at the beach. It
wouldn’t be right. I want us to be
Who knows? Maybe we’ll be more than
friends. Want to lick my beaters?
She holds the beaters out to him.
Thanks. I gotta see a guy about a
What kind of business? You know, if
you get something going, we would
expect some kind of consideration — a
No, this is a legitimate business.
Oh, Paul. I just got a chill.
I just want to be left alone. Put my
life back together — straight up this
time. Put the word out, will ya?
Nobody’s got nothin’ to worry about
Sure, Paul. I understand.
He heads for the door.
(calls after him)
Don’t be a stranger!
After Vitti leaves, Eddie enters from the other door.
(turning to Eddie)
Watch him like a hawk. If he steps
out of line, it would break my heart,
but shoot him in the fuckin’ head.
EXT. PARK AVENUE AUDI DEALERSHIP – LATER
Vitti is trying to sell an $80,000 Audi to the
MacINERNYS, an upscale middle-aged couple. Vitti opens
Look at the size of that trunk. You
could fit three people in there.
Not people — suitcases. It’s a joke.
The MacInernys laugh uncertainly.
So what are you driving now?
We have a Lexus.
It’s a fancy Toyota, right? The Japs
make good cars, but I ain’t that quick
to forget Pearl Harbor.
The MacInernys look doubtful.
INT. MORETTI’S STEAK HOUSE – NIGHT
A crowd of well-heeled New Yorkers surround Vitti at the
captain’s station. Vitti, the new host, greets a prominent
sports figure who embraces him like an old friend.
(signals the MAITRE D’)
Mario, put Mr. Torre at table five.
JOEY BOOTS, an old acquaintance of Vitti’s, enters with a
couple of his cronies.
Paul, I heard you were out.
All dressed up for dinner, huh?
The Maitre D’ crosses away and waves at Vitti.
Paul, that table for six is ready.
You can send them back.
You’re working here?
Nah — not really. It’s like — I’m
on parole, so I just — I come in, I
Joey and his friends nod condescendingly.
Okay. I get it. Nice seein’ you,
Paul. Don’t want to hold you up. You
got people to seat.
Joey and his guys walk away, they turn back and glance at
Vitti, then whisper something in audible to each other
Vitti burns, humiliated.
Vitti poses for a picture with some notables.
Vitti with some Broadway actors.
Vitti poses grimly with a BUSINESSMAN and his friends.
Thanks, Paul. Appreciate it.
Vitti moves to leave.
Hey, could you get us a big bottle of
Pellegrino and another round of
He slips Vitti a couple of bills. Vitti stares at the money
in his hand.
And more bread when you get a chance.
You want more bread?
He takes a small loaf from the breadbasket on the next table,
stuffs it into the Businessman’s mouth and walks off.
I’ll get your drinks now.
INT. IMPERIAL DIAMONDS – DAY
Two Hassidim are in the back of a 47th Street jewelry store,
sorting through a huge pile of diamonds.
Behind the display counter, Vitti stares at the diamonds,
breathing hard, starting to perspire. His customers, a
thirty-ish YOUNG MAN and his FIANCEE, study the diamond
engagement ring on her finger.
This stone is supposed to be a ‘G’
color, but it looks kind of yellow,
Fluorescent light. Makes everything
He starts instinctively casing the store.
QUICK CUT TO:
ARMED SECURITY GUARD
BACK TO FIANCEE
I thought fluorescent light makes
everything look blue?
FANTASY – SECURITY GUARD
bound and gagged.
BACK TO VITTI
What am I — Edison? I’m telling you,
it’s a ‘G.’
He glances at the surveillance cameras.
Can I look at it with a lens?
FANTASY – SPRAY-PAINTING
the camera lens and clipping the alarm wires.
BACK TO VITTI
A lens. Do you have a lens?
FANTASY – SAFE
in the back as it BLOWS UP.
Ben’s cousin, approaches Vitti who is now
Are you all right?
I’m gonna do us both a big favor. I
CUT BACK TO:
INT. CAR DEALERSHIP – DAY
The MacInernys are trembling.
You want to see the manager?
(grabs his crotch)
Here’s the manager. Now take a hike,
you fuckin’ deadbeats.
The MacInernys rush out of the showroom.
(calls after them)
Get a Hyundai!
DREAM SEQUENCE – INT. BEN’S OFFICE – NIGHT
Vitti is on the sofa. He’s wearing a shiny, silk, short-
sleeved shirt with the sleeves turned up, tight, black chino
pants and short, black, pointy-toed boots. His hair is oiled
and coifed like early Frankie Avalon.
I can’t deal with this shit. My
grades suck, I’m gettin’ in fights
every day, and if I get suspended
again my mother’s gonna fuckin’ kill
me — if the nuns don’t kill me first.
is listening to Vitti, but dressed as Sigmund Freud.
Eins, zwei, drei!
VITTI’S MOTHER is sitting next to him.
Sit up straight! Pay attention when
the doctor talks to you. This is
Ben (Freud) has a large TAXI METER TICKING away beside him.
Ma? What are you doin’ here?
(snorts some cocaine)
Acht gemacht gehunden nicht.
I tell him the same thing.
Suddenly, the WINDOWS are SHATTERED by GUNFIRE.
BLASTS open, flying off the hinges. Jelly enters, pushed
into the room by a gang of thugs, led by Patty LoPresti,
Eddie DeVol and his guys, all at least ten-feet-tall and all
holding huge guns.
leaps to his feet and reaches for his gun, but instead pulls
out a long sword. Confused but desperate, he holds up the
sword to menace the intruders, but the sword suddenly goes
limp. He tries to make the blade stand up, but it just keeps
dropping like a piece of soft rope.
Patty, Eddie, and the thugs laugh contemptuously at Vitti,
while Jelly looks on with an incredible stream of tears
pouring from his eyes.
END DREAM SEQUENCE.
INT. GUEST ROOM – NEXT DAY
Vitti is back in bed in his robe, still asleep. The door
opens and Laura enters with an interior decorator who has
fabric samples over her arm.
Now in here, I thought we’d get rid of
the wallpaper and maybe put in some
She sees Vitti and quickly steers the decorator back outside.
Don’t look, don’t look.
She comes back in, closes the bedroom door and confronts
Vitti who is still groggy from his troubling dream.
Do you realize it’s almost noon?
Really? Do me a favor, honey — make
me a sandwich.
You want a sandwich? Make it
yourself. I’m not afraid of you, Mr.
Oh-I’m-A-Great-Big-Mobster Man. I
want you out of my house.
I’ve had it with the bathrobe and the
skulking around and the girlfriend
who, I’m sorry, is so obviously faking
it’s not even funny. Enough!
Coulda had that sandwich made by now.
(tries new tack)
Okay. You don’t like me and I don’t
like you. We can at least agree on
I’m going to be honest with you — I’m
a very anxious person —
Hey! Me, too.
We have so much in common. Anyway,
this is not helping me, it’s not
helping my marriage, and I know Ben
really needs some alone time. So I’m
asking you — as a human being —
could you please leave?
(off Vitti’s look)
Yes, I’ll make you a sandwich.
Ham, cheese, lettuce, tomato,
mayonnaise, no onion.
EXT. SOBEL FRONT PORCH – LATER
Jelly comes out the front door with Vitti’s suitcases as Ben
pulls into the driveway. He gets out of the car holding a
small bag from the drugstore and sees Vitti coming out the
front door. Ben stops him on the porch.
Where are you going?
Where am I going? The orphanage found
my real parents. They want me back.
Put those in the car.
I’m goin’ to Jelly’s.
Jelly carries the luggage to his car parked in the driveway.
The hell you are. You’re supposed to
be in my custody. We have therapy
For what? The more we talk the worse
I get. I had that dream again.
The one where you’re Mussolini?
No, the other one.
The limp sword dream?
I probably shouldn’t be listening to
Do you think this dream might be
I know what you’re thinkin’. The
sword is my cock and I can’t get it
up, but that ain’t it. I saw Sheila
last night and I had a hard-on you
could swing from.
I don’t want to know that.
You coulda hung wet towels on it.
He’s like a racehorse in that area.
Okay! I get it.
Wait in the car!
So what does it mean?
Ben sits on the wicker divan.
Sex can represent a lot of things. In
your case I think it’s about
performance anxiety. Trying to find a
job that fits.
Doc — nothing’s gonna fit. That
nine-to-five bullshit — I’ll fuckin’
kill myself if I have to do that for
the rest of my life. You know they
take taxes out of your check? What
the fuck is that? I’m doomed. I’m
gonna end up selling hot dogs on the
(starts breathing hard
Look at me. I’m havin’ a fuckin’
panic attack here. My heart’s beatin’
like a rabbit.
He empties the drugstore bag and hands it to Vitti.
Breathe into this.
Vitti sits on a wicker chair.
(speaks through bag)
This is your fault.
Tellin’ me I have to get a job like
I’m some fuckin’ nobody. It was
humiliating! Thanks a lot.
(jumps up, in a
Hey, I’m doing the best I can! If you
can’t appreciate that, or if my best
isn’t good enough for you, then maybe
you should find somebody else to talk
to, you selfish prick!
Ben breaks down and cries what amounts to one racking sob,
then quickly pulls himself together.
What the hell was that?
I’m fine. I’m grieving. It’s a
Ben takes a pill bottle out of his pocket and pops a couple
Now what are you takin’?
Echinacea and goldenseal. Do you know
the TV show ‘Little Caesar’?
Yeah, I know it.
The producer of that show is a man
named Raoul Berman. A mutual friend
told him I knew you and Mr. Berman
called me this morning. He wants to
Meet him and find out.
EXT. NOGO RESTAURANT – NIGHT
Ben and Laura walk up to a trendy Japanese restaurant in
Chelsea. Ben is really keyed up.
We finally got him out of the house —
why are we having dinner with him? I
mean, how professional is that?
This is not social. Paul’s meeting a
television producer who might have a
job for him. He’s nervous and wants
me here as a buffer. I’m a buffer,
He’s a grown man. I don’t see why he
needs a chaperone.
He doesn’t. He needs a buffer. I’m
here in buffer capacity only.
Ben, if you say ‘buffer’ one more time
Ben pops a couple of pills.
Didn’t you just take two of those?
No, that was something else.
Well, you better not drink anything.
You know what happens.
Laura? I’m a doctor? I think I know
what I’m doing.
Ben opens the door and motions for Laura to enter.
INT. FBI CAR – SAME TIME
Cerrone and Miller watch the front of the restaurant.
They’re all inside. We’re going to
get something to eat. We’ll be back
before they finish dinner.
They drive off.
INT. NOGO RESTAURANT – LATER
Seated at a table are Ben and Laura, Vitti and Sheila, Jelly,
and the producer RAOUL BERMAN and his uptight, downtown
GIRLFRIEND. Jelly inspects a piece of raw octopus, while
Raoul gushes over a platter of sushi and sashimi.
I adore this place. Best sushi in
town. Have you tried the yellowtail,
Raoul picks up a floppy piece of raw fish with his
(makes a face)
No. We gettin’ any real food? This
is like eatin’ fuckin’ bait.
Raoul chuckles and glances uncomfortably at his girlfriend.
Ben laughs loudly to cover the awkward moment. He’s
suffering from some reaction between the pills and the booze
and he’s oddly thick-lipped.
Bait! That’s funny. Honey, did you
hear what Paul just said? He said
this is like eating bait.
I heard him. And I think it was
Why you talkin’ like that?
Like a fuckin’ retard.
(pointing to his
Oh — this? I took a couple ibuprofen
before we got here — I shouldn’t have
had the saki. I’ll be fine. It only
lasts a couple hours.
Rah-oo. Row. Rowl. I guess you need
both lips for that name. You know
what I love about Paul? He
was born without a filter. He
says exactly what he’s thinking —
just lays it right out there. He
doesn’t edit himself.
You wanna shut the fuck up?
See? He just told me to shut the fuck
up. No filter. I love that.
Isn’t he great?
(aside to Ben)
Too much buffering. Way too much.
(eyeing Ben oddly)
Yes. Paul, I’m such a huge fan of
yours — not a fan, but you know, an
Don’t admire me too much.
Is there any chance you might be
interested in working on ‘Little
Caesar’ as a consultant? Give us
technical advice, coach the actors,
make sure the dialogue rings true —
Wow. That would be incredible. Did
you hear that, Paul? Raoul wants to
know if you’d be interested in working
on his show as a consultant. You
know, give technical advice, coach the
(quietly to Ben)
In two seconds I’m gonna put a fork in
So what do you think, Paul?
Yeah, sure, whatever.
This is so exciting. Mr. Berman, I
love your show. Anthony Bella, the
guy who plays Nicky Caesar — I think
he grew up in Bensonhurst next door to
my cousin’s friend’s husband.
That’s her claim to fame.
I hate to bust your bubble, but he’s
not from Bensonhurst. He’s a
professional Italian. He grew up in
Connecticut or something like that.
Well, wherever he’s from, I think he’s
a wonderful actor.
Yeah, I bet he gets a lot of pussy.
Laura chokes on her drink.
What’s the matter with you? We got
women at the table.
You said ‘fuckin’.’
That’s different. It’s colorful.
Hey, speaking of colorful — this
peacock walks into a bar —
Oh, my god.
(to a passing waiter,
rising her half-empty
Could I get another one, please?
And one for me.
No. No more for the Buffer.
She glares at Ben as the table descends into silence.
(tries a desperate save)
So. I see in the paper where
Oklahoma! might win the Tony award.
Vitti’s eyes suddenly go wide.
He grabs Sheila and pulls her down as GUNFIRE rakes the wall
behind them. Everybody else at the table hits the floor.
Other diners scream in terror. Jelly pulls a GUN and SHOOTS
A LONE GUNMAN
runs from the restaurant. After a long beat, the frightened
patrons start to get up and chatter nervously.
Nobody’s hurt. Vitti helps Sheila to her feet.
What the hell was that?
I think somebody’s got it in for
Raoul crawls up from behind the table.
Holy fucking shit.
That was phenomenal!
EXT. MIDTOWN STREET – LATER THAT NIGHT
Jelly stands in front of an apartment building parking
garage. A guy comes walking up the ramp toward him. As he
comes nearer, we see that the guy is the Gunman from the
Hey, pal — got a light?
The guy stops, pulls out a Zippo and lights it for Jelly.
Where’s your cigarette?
I’m trying to cut down.
The Gunman recognizes Jelly and desperately reaches for the
gun in his pocket, but Jelly hauls off and whacks the guy
across the back of the head with a sap. As he slumps into
Jelly’s arms, Vitti steps out of a doorway and Jelly drags
the gunman into the garage.
INT. SOBEL HOUSE – SAME TIME
Ben and Laura are getting ready for bed.
I don’t know why you feel you have to
save this man.
It’s my job. He needs me.
So that automatically means you have
to help him? You’re always doing this
— putting other people’s needs ahead
of your own, like you’re this martyr
or saint or something. It’s like
living with Mother Teresa.
Actually, I hear she was tough to live
with. Lot of parties, loud music —
You don’t need this in your
life — especially not now. You
really need to be grieving for your
Really? I haven’t seen it.
Well, you know, it’s a process. I
mean, we had issues — there’s some
anger — but I’ll work it out.
Laura goes to Ben and embraces him.
It’s okay, honey. You can let it go.
Ben almost starts to break, but he holds it back.
No, I’m — it’s okay.
Ben sits heavily on the bed.
It’s just a confusing time. I became
a therapist because he was a
therapist, so obviously his approval
was very important to me. But is that
the only reason I did it? I don’t
know. And now that he’s gone, why do
I keep doing it? Is this what I
She sits next to him and takes his hand.
I just want you to be happy.
She kisses him.
Maybe you’re right.
Maybe it’s time I started focusing on
me, and, you know, satisfying some of
He looks at her expectantly.
Oh, honey, I just brushed my teeth.
No, that’s not what I meant. I just
(at a loss)
I don’t know what.
She puts her arms around him and holds him.
EXT. ROOFTOP – LATER THAT NIGHT
Vitti and Jelly stand with the Gunman on the roof of the
parking garage, four stories above the ground. The guy’s
arms are bound. Jelly ties a rope around his ankles.
I’m gonna ask you once nicely. Who
you working for?
Fuck me? Fine. Jelly?
Jelly shoves the guy to the parapet at the edge of the roof,
grabs him by the legs and hangs him over the side of the
building. The guy screams.
I’ll ask you again. Who you working
The guy keeps screaming.
He’s screamin’ too loud. Hold on a
Jelly swings the guy against the building, hitting his head
and dazing him momentarily.
Who are you working for?
Drop him, Jelly.
Okay! Okay! Rigazzi! I’m working
Pull him back up.
Jelly drops the guy.
The Gunman plunges three stories and lands heavily in a
dumpster full of garbage.
What’s the matter with you?
You said drop him.
I said pull him back up.
That’s not what I heard.
You heard what you wanted to hear.
Okay, you got me there.
EXT. RIGAZZI PLUMBING AND HEATING – NEXT MORNING
A “family” business in Jersey.
INT. BACK ROOM – NEXT MORNING
The light from outside barely penetrates the painted windows
of the shabby office.
LOU RIGAZZI, aka “Lou the Wrench,” the aging boss of the
Rigazzi family, sits in the half-light as a couple of his
soldiers enter with the battered and hobbling Gunman between
What the hell happened to you?
Vitti threw me off a roof.
Vitti? You talked to Vitti? What did
you say to him?
Nothing. I didn’t tell him anything.
Mr. Rigazzi, can I
go — I think my leg’s broken.
That must hurt.
Rigazzi pulls out a GUN with a silencer and SHOOTS the
I hate to see people in pain.
Get him out of here.
What about Vitti?
He’s a hard man to kill. But he’s not
immortal. Our time will come.
EXT. BACK-YARD SWIMMING POOL – DAY
A big, family barbecue is going on in a back yard in Queens.
Several children are splashing in an over-sized, above-ground
swimming pool. Oddly, the children appear to be shouting and
laughing but make no sound.
At the barbecue, Nicky Caesar is watching his friend MELLO
turn Italian sausage on the grill.
I like mine burnt.
I don’t know how you like your
sausage? Twenty fuckin’ years we been
doin’ this. So you got the money?
The wind shifts and blows the smoke from the barbecue in
Not all of it. I’m still light about
(blinded by smoke)
Can we cut? This is ridiculous.
Cut! Can you do something about the
We PULL BACK to reveal the set of “Little Caesar.” Assistant
directors and production assistants echo the director:
“We’re cut!” “Reset!” “Effects!”
Vitti observes the action sitting in a director’s chair,
still brooding over the previous night’s events. Raoul sits
next to him.
This is the problem with shooting on
location. But it’s worth it for the
Yeah, this is real authentic.
Tony! Come here a second.
Anthony Bella. He plays Nicky Caesar.
I know who he is. They used to watch
the show up at Sing Sing.
Are you shitting me?
ANTHONY BELLA joins them.
Tony, this is Paul Vitti.
You don’t have to tell me who he is.
(shakes Paul’s hand)
It’s a pleasure, mate.
(reacting to accent)
Mate? I don’t believe this! You’re
an English guy? You ain’t even
Australian-Italian. We got some
paisans down under.
Down under what?
(to Tony Bella)
How incredible is this? Paul tells me
they watch the show in Sing Sing!
Fantastic! That’s so fuckin’ great.
I wouldn’t wet my pants over it. They
watch ‘Supermarket Sweep,’ too.
Raoul laughs hard.
You laugh too much.
So, Paul, you going to join us?
Vitti looks around, his future plans now beginning to form.
Yeah. You got a good setup here.
Great. See you later then.
He exits. Vitti turns to Raoul.
Coupla things, though. I don’t know
who makes these decisions, but some of
this, it don’t look right.
I sensed it myself. Which elements
strike you as wrong?
The people mainly. I mean, you got a
boss who speaks Australian. What the
fuck is that? And I’m guessing your
background is — what?
The theater, mostly.
Yeah, the theater. So how about if I
bring in some guys that I know — you
know, more ‘authentic.’
I would be eternally grateful.
Yeah. One of those trailers like the
(shakes his hand)
I’ll put that in the works right now.
He hurries off to talk to his assistant. Jelly comes up to
You really gonna do this?
No fuckin’ way. I’ve had it with this
job bullshit. A week of this and I’d
either shoot myself or shoot Raoul.
But it’s good cover while I figure out
my next move. Call the guys.
You got it.
Jelly and Vitti’s old crew, MO-MO, BIGS, TUNA, EDDIE COKES,
and eight or nine other wiseguys walk en masse into base
Vitti’s guys go to the front of the lunch line, forcing the
A big, pop-out trailer labeled “Mr. Vitti,” guarded by three
of his guys. Tuna brings a lunch tray and knocks on the
door. Jelly opens the door and takes the tray.
Vitti conferring with Raoul and Tony Bella on the script,
ripping out whole sections.
Vitti in the makeup trailer getting a haircut and manicure
while he smokes a cigar and talks on his cell phone.
Vitti with the costumer, approving and nixing various
wardrobe choices, while Jelly steals an expensive watch in
Vitti in a massage chair getting a backrub from a masseuse.
A PRODUCTION ASSISTANT approaches him.
P.A. (PRODUCTION ASSISTANT)
They’re ready to start shooting, Mr.
Yeah, ten minutes, tell ‘em.
Eddie Devol, Patty LoPresti’s guy, watches Vitti from a safe
EXT. SHOPPING MALL – DAY
Ben comes out of the market carrying several grocery bags and
a small prescription bag. Two Mafia SOLDIERS step up beside
him and urge him toward a big stretch LIMO IDLING at the
Walk this way.
There must be some mistake. I didn’t
order a limo.
Get in the car.
INT. KNIGHTS OF PALERMO – LATER
Ben enters timorously, still carrying his groceries.
Patty LoPresti, Masiello and a couple of other heavyweights
are sitting at the table, all except Patti smoking cigars.
Ben immediately recognizes their status and grasps the
gravity of their mood.
(nervous, but trying
to keep it light)
Hello. I’m Ben Sobel. And you are —
The Soldier sits Ben down. The other soldier takes his
groceries. Ben looks at Patty, trying to gauge her role.
You’re the shrink who’s taking care of
Yes, sir. That’s right.
(to guy with
Could you be careful, because I think
they put the eggs on the bottom.
He drops the bags heavily onto the bar.
So? Is he nuts or what?
Paulie. Is he nuts?
I can’t discuss a patient’s case with
I’d say he’s still suffering from
chronic anxiety and —
We call it Antisocial Personality
Meaning — he — fails to conform to
societal norms with respect to —
I’m getting a fuckin’ headache here.
What are you saying?
He’s got a — criminal temperament.
(stares at him)
He’s a criminal? This is news? And
for that you need a doctor
degree? So what are you doin’ with
Well, I’m trying to at least show him
the possibility of change —
Wrong. You do not want him to change.
Ben looks at her, sensing her command of the group.
We haven’t really been
This is Mrs. LoPresti.
Ben offers his hand but she ignores it.
Ben, Paul Vitti is important to this
family. We don’t want to see you turn
him into a stromboni.
A stromboni? That thing they clean
the ice with at hockey games?
That’s a Zamboni, asshole. Stromboni.
It’s a bull with his balls cut off.
She reaches under the table and grabs Ben’s balls. He winces
No, we don’t want to do that.
Not unless you want to be one, too.
Me? No. I’m very attached to my
balls. As you can probably tell.
Then do the right thing, understand?
Yes, I understand completely. May I
go now? I have perishables —
He takes his groceries and edges away.
INT. “LITTLE CAESAR” SET – DAY
Vitti is sitting at a table with Jelly and some of his main
guys. From a distance it looks like they’re playing cards.
Up close it’s a different story.
We’re gonna need a grapple or a crane
with maybe a fifty-foot boom.
I seen one — in Bayonne — but I’ll
See what you can come up with. And
we’re gonna need a city bus.
I got a guy in the Transit Authority.
He owes me. Just let me know when.
Vitti turns to see Patty, Eddie Devol and his men heading
across the set.
I guess everybody’s gone Hollywood,
How you doin’, Patty.
Jelly — you’re working here, too?
I’m an extra.
An extra what?
A supernumerary. An ‘atmosphere.’ It
ain’t bad. You just stand around all
day waitin’ for them to shoot and they
pay you eighty bucks.
Eighty bucks? For standin’ around all
day? You used to sneeze eighty bucks.
How much you make shootin’ craps?
Today? About eight hundred maybe.
And how about bookin’ bets for the
Teamsters and the crew?
Another grand. One of the producers
really likes the ponies.
So eighteen hundred bucks.
Plus eighty —
I know — extra.
They all laugh.
An ASSISTANT DIRECTOR approaches the group.
This is a closed set. We’re about to
Yeah? So am I.
Eddie grabs the Assistant Director and walks him away.
EXT. “LITTLE CAESAR” BASE CAMP – SAME TIME
The trucks and trailers are arranged on a parking lot. A car
pulls up and Lou Rigazzi gets out with his bodyguards.
Should I wait here, Mr. Rigazzi?
No, pull the car up your ass and wait
EXT. SET – SAME TIME
Patty takes Vitti’s arm and walks with him.
I heard you had some more trouble.
One of Rigazzi’s guys took a shot at
She stops at the extras’ makeup table and starts primping in
I don’t have to tell you, Paul. Alone
on the street you don’t stand a
chance. That’s what the family’s all
about. Since the old days, when the
grandfathers first came over. That’s
not something you just walk away from.
Yeah, I know. When you’re a Jet,
you’re a Jet all the way.
So you want to tell me what’s going on
here? It looks like you got your
whole crew back together.
Nothing’s going on. They’re actors.
Don’t bullshit me, Paul. You’re
planning something. I’m feeling very
Okay. Something big is going down,
but you’re getting a cut. My hand to
You’re a good friend, Paul. And I
would never think of insisting on
this, but I’d feel better if you
brought in Eddie and some of my guys
to help with the job.
I don’t think so.
Then I’ll have to insist.
Raoul approaches and eyes Patty disdainfully.
Oh, dear God. First of all,
sweetheart, we’re not shooting the
hooker scene until tomorrow. And the
hair — please, what is that?
Raoul, this is a friend of mine.
Raoul freezes, recognizing the name.
Mrs. LoPresti — I am so very, very
Raoul wheels on a production assistant who happens to be
How dare you not inform me Mrs.
LoPresti was on the set. You’re
Enjoy your visit with us. If there’s
anything I can do —
Go fuck yourself.
Raoul moves away quickly. Patty turns back to Vitti.
It’s good to have you back, Paul.
(kisses Vitti on
We’ll be in touch.
EXT. PARKING LOT – MOMENTS LATER
As Patty and her men walk away down one aisle of trucks and
campers, Rigazzi and his men walk down the next aisle heading
for the set.
They narrowly miss seeing each other.
EXT. BASE CAMP – MOMENTS LATER
Ben arrives looking for Vitti. He sees Patty approaching and
freezes, then quickly ducks behind a nearby truck, shielding
his crotch. Patty and her men pass by. Ben waits until they
pass, then comes out of hiding and hurries on.
EXT. BACK-YARD SET – SAME TIME
A mildly-distraught Raoul is huddled with Vitti.
I mean, tell me — was she angry? Am
I in any danger?
No, you’re fine. But you might want
to have somebody else start your car
the next couple of weeks.
I’ll have Brian do it. He’s new.
Rigazzi and his men join them.
Could I talk to you for a second?
Oh, what is this now, the bus and
truck tour of Guys and Dolls?
This is Lou Rigazzi.
(a horrified whisper)
Please, forgive me. I’m on
painkillers — half the time I don’t
know what I’m saying.
Raoul kisses Rigazzi’s hand. Rigazzi yanks it away.
(as he exits)
Brian! Get my car!
I need a couple minutes.
EXT. CRAFT SERVICES TABLE – MOMENTS LATER
Vitti and Rigazzi stand at the table. Rigazzi’s soldiers are
The guy who shot at you — he was
acting on his own. I never gave an
Is that right?
And he’s been taken care of. There
won’t be another incident. Unless
you’re thinkin’ of workin’ for Patty
Good. Then I got no beef with you.
Thanks. I’ll sleep much better.
Because that would not be the way to
go. You want to back a winner, which
is gonna be me. It only makes sense.
You come work for us. I’ll treat you
I don’t think so.
Well, so much for sleeping better.
Rigazzi smiles and pats Vitti’s cheek, then exits with his
INT. EXTRAS HOLDING TENT – SAME TIME
Ben walks in and sees Vitti’s guys sitting around.
Hey, Dr. Sobel?
of the others)
Right. I was thinking of the cellist.
How’s it going?
Goin’ good. I did a ‘Law and Order’
last week, I had a line on ‘Sex and
the City’ —
I’m up for a recurring on ‘NYPD Blue.’
That’s great. Have you seen Paul?
Yeah, I think he’s in his camper.
INT. VITTI’S TRAILER – MOMENTS LATER
There’s a loud KNOCK on the door and Ben storms in.
(surprised to see him)
Hey, Doc. What are you doing here?
No, what are you doing here? I came
to tell you we have a preliminary
meeting with your parole officer and
who do I run into? Patty LoPresti.
What is this — a knock-knock joke?
to-cut-off-my-balls. Stop lying to
me, Paul. Your whole gang is here.
Who says I’m lying? I finally get a
straight job and start putting my life
in order and you come in here and
start accusing me! That’s how much
you trust me?
It’s not that I don’t trust you, I
just don’t — trust you. Are you
lying to me? Because I know you,
Paul. You’ll say or do anything to
get your own way.
This is what’s so hard about being an
ex-con. You make one little mistake
in your life and people never let you
Oh, so now you’re the victim? I want
Wait a second. Say that again.
‘I want the truth.’ Say it — like
you did just now.
I want the truth?
No, strong, like before.
I want the truth!
Yeah, that’s good!
No, I’m serious. That had power. I
believed it. You could be an actor.
I’m not an actor —
Hey, you’re as good as most of the
bums I see around here. They have
this part. You could do it.
Actually, I did The Music Man in tenth
Of course. I’m gonna talk to Raoul.
About being on the show? I couldn’t –
No, this part you could do. It’s
perfect. Believe me.
EXT. APARTMENT BUILDING – DAY (LATER)
The camera rolls.
Jelly and Tony Bella drag Ben kicking and screaming to the
edge of the roof and hang him over the edge.
On the ground, Raoul and Vitti look up, watching the action.
Does that screaming sound real to you?
Oh, yeah. That sounds real.
INT. BEN’S CAR – LATER
Ben drives, pissed off. Vitti chuckles to himself.
It’s not funny! There was no safety
harness or anything. They could have
Hey, if you didn’t want to do it, why
didn’t you say something?
I know exactly what that was about.
You resent the fact that you’ve been
put in my custody, so you passive-
aggressively arranged things to make
me look like a fool.
Come on — you were great.
(turning on a dime)
Really? I was scared at first, but on
the second take, I think I found some
good stuff. I was able to texture the
Vitti is laughing.
Oh, screw you, Paul. Just screw you.
He pops two pills.
What, are you self-medicating again?
And don’t give that decongestant
Don’t worry about me. Just worry
about what you’re going to say to this
parole officer. What are you going to
say? That you’ve moved out of my
house. That you’ve got your old gang
back together. For what, a high
school drop-out reunion?
I’m gonna say that’s none of his
It’s my business. I want to know.
I’m a federal institution.
You recognize that car?
The one that’s been following us the
last mile and a half.
Ben jerks his head around to look and sees a black Mercedes
What do you mean, ‘lose ‘em’?
Vitti stomps his foot down on Ben’s, flooring the
EXT. HOBOKEN STREET – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Ben’s car speeds up suddenly. The black Mercedes behind him
speeds up, too, as does a third car that has joined the
CUT BACK TO:
INT. BEN’S CAR – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Ben is on the edge of panic.
Maybe I should just pull over. It
could be the F.B.I.
No, they’re two cars back. You gotta
be a little more observant, Doc. Turn
Ben executes a hard, SKIDDING left. The Benz stays right
What if we just stop and get out?
They’re not going to shoot us in broad
Broad daylight’s the best time. You
can see better. Take a right. Now!
EXT. HOBOKEN STREET – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Pedestrians scatter as Ben makes a sudden turn into a bank
drive-thru. He over-steers and wipes out an ATM machine,
sending up a cloud of bills that flutter down like confetti.
follows right behind him, then the bystanders run to pick up
the cash, blocking the drive-thru, forcing Miller in the FBI
car to stop.
CUT BACK TO:
EXT. HOBOKEN STREET – MOMENTS LATER
Two police officers are parked at the curb. They hear a HORN
HONKING, and turn just as Ben’s car comes flying past them.
The cops start to pull out but stop short as the Benz blows
by, swerving to avoid hitting them. The cops take off in hot
INT. BEN’S CAR – CONTINUOUS ACTION
We can’t do this, Paul! We have to
stop! This is a lease!
GUNFIRE SHATTERS the rear WINDOW of the car.
(shouting back at
It’s a goddamn lease!
Move over. I’ll drive.
Move over? Where?
Vitti puts his left foot on the gas pedal and his left hand
on the wheel.
Ben tries to launch himself into the backseat but is stopped
by his seat belt.
He releases the belt, then twists and crawls over the top of
the driver’s seat into the back, while Vitti slides into the
EXT. PARKWAY – MOMENTS LATER
Ben’s car races past an industrial area with the Mercedes
right on its tail.
EXT. INDUSTRIAL PARK – MOMENTS LATER
Ben’s car bounces over some railroad tracks and sails into a
warehouse complex on the river with the Mercedes still only a
few car lengths behind.
INT. BEN’S CAR – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Vitti drives down the narrow lane between two big warehouses.
It’s gonna get worse?
EXT. PARKING LOT – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Vitti rockets out from between buildings and races through a
parking lot toward the river with the Benz on his tail.
CUT BACK TO:
INT. BEN’S CAR – CONTINUOUS ACTION
They’re right behind us!
(shouts at them)
He starts whipping things out the shattered back window — a
tennis racket, sneakers, an empty Macy’s box.
INSERT – TENNIS RACKET
is crushed under the Mercedes’ wheels.
CUT BACK TO:
INT. BEN’S CAR – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Ben picks up the only thing left — the New York Times. He
starts leafing through it.
What the fuck are you doing?
I wanted to save the crossword.
Bent throws the paper out the window.
BENZ DRIVER’S POV
The Times hits the windshield and one double-page sticks,
totally OBSCURING the driver’s VIEW.
EXT. PARKING LOT – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Vitti throws a 180, SKIDDING to a stop just inches from the
river’s edge. The Benz, with the newspaper covering the
windshield, sails past them and right off the embankment. It
seems to hang in the air for a long time, then lands with a
big splash and starts to sink almost immediately.
BEN AND VITTI
They jump out of the car and watch the Mercedes disappear
under the water.
You think they’ll get out?
Yeah, that’s James Bond and the ‘Sea
Hunt’ guy in there, so they got a
pretty good shot.
They hear POLICE SIRENS APPROACHING. Vitti starts walking
away quickly. Ben follows after him.
Where’re you going?
I gotta take care of something.
But your parole officer —
Send my regrets.
I’m warning you. If you leave now —
So long, Doc.
Vitti takes off running, ducking behind the rows of parked
(calling after him)
That’s it! I’m finished! You’re on
your own now, pal! I’m —
POLICE CARS and the FBI CAR SCREECH into the parking lot and
EXT. RIVERBANK – LATER
Police divers search for the sunken Mercedes in the middle of
On shore, Ben leans against a government car looking tired
and distraught while Chapin berates him.
Where is he, Dr. Sobel?
I wish I knew.
Well, considering that he’s in your
custody, that’s not quite the answer I
was looking for. He’s got something
big in the works. You want to tell me
what you know?
I don’t know anything. As far as I
can tell, he’s making a real effort to
Yeah, that’s why I’ve got two corpses
at the bottom of the river.
He reaches through the open car window into his briefcase and
pulls out a file of photographs.
Here. Vitti with Sal Masiello. Vitti
with Patty LoPresti. Vitti with Lou
Rigazzi. Let me know — I can order
some wallet size for you. I’ve got
more than enough to put him away again
without these. Violation of parole,
second-degree murder here. When I
really start digging, it’ll be amazing
what I come up with. You have twenty-
four hours to find him and deliver him
to me. Otherwise you’re looking at
obstruction of justice, and accessory
to felony manslaughter. And trust me,
Dr. Sobel, if you don’t like me now,
you really don’t want to see me in
I’m getting that. Can I go now?
He starts for his car.
You can’t take your car. We’re
impounding it as evidence.
Then can somebody give me a ride home?
Yeah, the government runs a limousine
service. The number is 1-800-Fuck
Chapin walks away.
INT. VITTI’S TRAILER – DAY
Vitti is hurriedly collecting his stuff, talking to Jelly and
a few of his old gang.
I don’t have a lot of time. They’re
probably gonna come lookin’ for me, so
we’ll go over everything later, okay?
Paul, not that I’m questioning, but
what do we want with Eddie DeVol?
Guy’s a fuckin’ scumbag.
Look, I’m not happy about it, but if
it keeps Patty off my back, so be it.
They’re meeting us at the club. Let’s
(as they all get up)
Not all at once. I gotta tell you
A PRODUCTION ASSISTANT KNOCKS and sticks her head in the
Mr. Vitti? Mr. Bella asked if you
could meet him in the makeup trailer.
No, I gotta go.
He said it was important.
I’ll talk to him tomorrow.
He hands the P.A. some money.
Here — tell him you couldn’t find me.
Vitti exits. The P.A. looks at the money.
EXT. MAKEUP TRAILER – LATER
Vitti makes his way past the trailers, heading for his car.
As he passes the makeup trailer, the door opens and Tony
Bella sticks his head out.
Can’t really talk right now, mate.
Two seconds. Please, Paul. It’s
Vitti looks pissed.
INT. MAKEUP TRAILER – MOMENTS LATER
Vitti watches impatiently while the makeup artist touches up
(script in hand)
I’m looking for something to do when
my character finds out he’s being
indicted. I was thinking of punching
the wall, but I did that when they
killed Uncle Lenny, and I did it again
when Franny left me. Oh, and I
punched a car, a van actually, when
Peezee screwed up the big drug deal.
So I’d like to find something
different, that doesn’t involve, you
know, punching anything.
Try kickin’ something. Let me know
how it works out.
Vitti starts for the door.
Wait, Paul. That’s interesting. Like
I don’t know. You could kick a guy in
Just some guy! You knock him down,
give him a couple quick kicks in the
head while he’s on the ground.
Why not? Because he’s there and
you’re pissed off.
You’ve done that?
Maybe once or twice. Look, I got
(thinks about it,
My character wouldn’t do that. What
(at a loss, getting
I don’t know. You could yell real
Yell real loud? That’s original.
Or keep your fuckin’ mouth shut! Who
gives a shit what you do, for cryin’
Tony Bella likes something about Vitti’s inflection.
Who gives a shit what you do, for
cryin’ out loud?
What are you doin’?
What are you doin’?
Okay, you can cut that shit out right
Okay, you can cut that shit out right
Hey, I’m serious, asshole!
Hey, I’m serious, asshole!
EXT. MAKEUP TRAILER – MOMENT LATER
The door flies open and Tony Bella comes flying out of the
trailer backwards, hitting the pavement hard. Vitti charges
out of the trailer and storms away. Tony wipes blood from
under his nose.
That was good. My character could do
EXT. SOBEL HOUSE – LATER
A cab pulls up to the house, and Ben gets out.
He walks up the driveway and sees Jelly’s car parked at the
back door and a big man in a dark suit and tie wiping the
Jelly! Where’s Paul?
The guy in the suit turns. It’s Michael.
Michael? What are you doing?
You got a job? That’s great. Look
how handsome you look in that suit.
What’s the job?
I’m working for Mr. Vitti. I’m his
Oh, no, you’re not!
You keep telling me to get a job!
I meant making sandwiches at the
Subway, not driving a getaway car!
He’s paying me twenty dollars an hour.
I don’t care if he pays you two
hundred an hour, you’re not doing it.
He had no right to ask you without my
permission. Where is he?
I can’t tell you.
What do you mean you can’t tell me?
I promised I’d never repeat anything I
heard in the car. I took an oath.
You took an oath! Oh, my God! Was
there blood involved?
Dad, I gave my word.
Laura comes out of the house.
Ben? Where’ve you been? What
happened to you?
I was in a car chase. There was a
little shooting — not that much
really — then they — drove into the
river. It wasn’t as bad as it sounds.
When is this going to end?
Tonight, I hope. I just have to find
him and —
Why? A few days ago you weren’t even
sure you still wanted to be a
therapist. Now you’re going to risk
your life again for that lout.
Yeah, but he’s an amazing lout, isn’t
he? I can’t quit now. You know that.
Go. Just don’t get shot — please?
I love you.
They kiss. Then Ben turns to Michael.
All right, where is he?
You tell your father right now or I’ll
give you such a smack it won’t even be
Okay! I dropped him at the club.
Little Darling’s in Queens.
Okay, Mafiaboy, give me your car keys.
No, I’m borrowing your car.
He kisses Laura again and takes off.
EXT. LITTLE DARLING’S – LATER THAT NIGHT
Several limos are parked outside a family-owned nightclub in
Ben pulls up, leaning way back in the driver’s seat of
Michael’s, half-painted, modified ’82 Honda Civic with the
INT. CIVIC – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Ben takes out a bottle of pills. He tries to remove the
child-safety cap but his hands are shaking so badly he can’t
do it. Frustrated, he tries to bite the cap off, then gives
up and throws the bottle away.
EXT. LITTLE DARLING’S – SAME TIME
Ben enters the club.
A moment later, Cerrone and Miller cruise by in an unmarked
car and park at the end of the block.
INT. CLUB ENTRANCE – MOMENT LATER
Ben enters the nightclub and starts moving through the crowd,
looking for Vitti.
He pushes through and sees Jelly and a few of the guys
watching an exotic dancer, a beautiful young blonde in a
skimpy costume, standing on a platform grinding in mock
(yelling over music)
Hey, Doc. What are you doin’ here?
Jelly tucks a few bills into her G-string. She looks at Ben
and winks suggestively.
I think she likes you, Doc. Give her
a couple of bucks.
Ben reluctantly digs in his pocket and holds out a bill to
Can you break a twenty?
The stripper sensuously fingers the top of her G-string, and
Ben gingerly sticks the twenty in it.
Do I just make my own change?
He tentatively reaches for some smaller bills in her G-string
but she dances away.
(calls to her)
A ten and five ones — when you have
He turns around to talk to Jelly, but he’s already gone.
Ben finds Jelly at a table with Vitti.
Okay, Paul, what’s going on?
What are you doing here?
I could ask you the same thing.
What’s it look like? We’re just
blowin’ off a little steam. What’s
the big deal?
Eddie DeVol enters, flanked by his main guys, AL PACINO and
How’s it goin’, Paulie? You know my
guys — Enormous Bobby and Al Pacino?
(looks at him)
Al Pacino? That’s your real name?
No. People call me that because I
look like Al Pacino.
Anybody ever call you Carol Burnett?
‘Cause you look about as much like
Carol Burnett as you look like Al
Ben laughs. Al Pacino glares at him.
I do see a little Pacino there —
around the eyes.
So we’re all here. Let’s do it.
He heads for the back of the club with his guys. Vitti and
Jelly start to follow.
Let’s do what?
You better get out of here.
(lays a hand
on his arm)
I’m not going until you tell me what’s
going on here.
Vitti violently shakes off Ben’s hand.
Don’t make me hurt you. Get the fuck
out of here.
He walks away leaving Ben frozen.
Ben watches as they disappear through a door leading to the
back of the club. He starts toward the door.
INT. BASEMENT ROOM – MOMENTS LATER
Vitti is seated at a big table in the crowded, smoke-filled
room. Jelly sits at his side. He’s surrounded by his crew,
about a half-a-dozen guys, and Patty’s man, Eddie DeVol.
Several street maps and diagrams are spread out on the table.
Okay, this is big and we only get one
shot at it; and there’s only about a
million ways this fuckin’ thing can go
bad, so listen up.
Vitti pulls a street map to the center of the table and taps
a spot downtown.
The Federal Gold Depository in Lower
Manhattan. Three times a year a
shipment of gold bars goes in a
heavily-guarded armored truck from the
Depository to the vault at the Federal
Reserve to hold for foreign
governments that trade in bullion. At
three o’clock in the morning — eight
hours from now –we’re gonna hijack
INT. LITTLE DARLING’S – SAME TIME
Ben enters the back room of the club, looks around, and
starts down the stairwell leading to the basement.
INT. BASEMENT STAIRWAY – MOMENTS LATER
Ben makes his way down the cramped, dimly-lit stairway and
approaches the door to the basement room.
He raises his hand to knock, then hesitates and stands there
for a moment listening to the MUFFLED VOICES inside.
Suddenly he is grabbed from behind and slammed up against the
door by Enormous Bobby. Bobby slams him against the door a
couple of more times, using Ben’s head as a doorknocker. The
door is opened by someone inside and Enormous Bobby shoves
Ben into the room.
INT. BASEMENT ROOM – CONTINUOUS ACTION
Ben hits the floor to a chorus of surprised reactions from
the guys. Enormous Bobby pulls Ben off the floor by his
What the fuck is this?
I found this guy listening at the
Hey, guys. How’s it going?
Who is this guy?
Ben Sobel. Sorry, I can’t move my
head to the right. Boy, I hope that’s
Get rid of him.
Al Pacino puts his gun to Ben’s head.
You’re a dead man, asshole. Let’s go.
He starts muscling Ben to the door.
What are you doing?
What do you think? He can make every
guy in this room.
Oh, I’m not into that, fellas.
Get your fuckin’ hands off him! He’s
What, on the job?
Either he’s in, or he’s dead. Which
I think in is better.
He’s in. He’s my responsibility.
Okay, no more surprises. And from
this moment on, no one leaves my
sight. Got it? Now go through it one
Okay — everybody listen up.
Okay. Go ahead.
EXT. LITTLE DARLING’S – LATER THAT NIGHT
Agents Cerrone and Miller watch the front of the club from
their car parked across the street.
(yawns, checks watch)
I wonder what it costs to keep that
many limos waiting for three-and-a-
A dozen men looking like Vitti and his crew come out of the
club and get into the limos.
Everybody stand by. They’re leaving.
The limos drive off.
At the corner, the FBI car pulls out and follows at a
EXT. QUEENSBOROUGH BRIDGE – NIGHT
The FBI car follows the limos across the bridge into
EXT. TIMES SQUARE – LATER
The limos pull up at the WWF Restaurant. The FBI car stops
up the block.
312, all units. W.W.F. Restaurant.
The limo doors open and the passengers get out — all
INT. FBI CAR – SAME TIME
Miller watches intently.
Where’s Vitti? I don’t see Vitti.
Cerrone stares with the growing awareness that they’ve been
(grimly, into radio)
Call it off. We lost them.
INT. MANHATTAN WAREHOUSE – MIDDLE OF NIGHT
Vitti’s guys are dressed like construction workers as they
load their gear into two trucks. Vitti supervises while
others work on a New York City bus.
Eddie DeVol, Al Pacino and Enormous Bobby stand guard over
the whole scene, in case anyone is thinking of defecting.
Ben is wearing heavy dungarees and an oversized plaid shirt,
struggling to lace his work boots. Jelly approaches him and
tosses a bulletproof vest on the table.
Here. See if this’ll fit under your
I could fit you under my shirt. Don’t
they have anything smaller?
This ain’t Bloomingdale’s. Nobody
knew you were comin’. You’re lucky
you’re alive, Doc.
He glances at Eddie DeVol.
Nobody’s going to be alive when this
is over. What kind of plan is this?
It’s crazy. It’s stupid!
Watch it. It may be crazy but it
ain’t stupid. If you want to stay
alive, just keep your mouth shut, do
everything I tell you and try not to
pee in your pants.
Can you handle an M-16?
He holds up an automatic rifle.
You mean shoot it?
No, I mean twirl it like a fuckin’
baton. How about an A.K.?
He holds up another rifle.
Kalashnikov, MAC-10, Uzi — stop me if
I hit one you like.
Ben sees Eddie watching him and gingerly picks up a 9mm
Couldn’t I just take this?
Yeah, that’s a good one. That gun
brings back a lot of fond memories.
Use it in good health.
Ben puts the gun into the waistband of his dungarees, but it
slips through and drops into his pants.
Ooh, cold — cold.
He jams his hand down the front of his pants and starts
searching around in there. Eddie and Enormous Bobby stare at
him as they walk by.
My gun — fell down in my —
He shakes his leg and the gun drops out of his cuff and
clatters onto the floor. He smiles weakly and picks it up.
Vitti approaches. He looks agitated but under tight control.
Check the bus.
(quietly, to Ben)
If we can, I’m gonna get you out
before the real shit goes down. Just
don’t flip out on me, okay?
You are making a huge mistake. You
know that, don’t you?
You said it yourself. It’s my nature.
It’s not your nature! You have a
What are you, fucking Jiminy Cricket?
I don’t know what planet you live on,
but here on Earth it’s ‘might makes
right.’ Read the papers. The guys
with the guns make the rules.
(holding up the
So I guess that makes me a real man
now. What happened to the white hat,
Paul? Your father wasn’t wrong. You
could be one of the good guys.
Enough. Say one more word about my
father and I’ll break your fuckin’
Vitti walks off.
INT. BATHROOM – SAME TIME
Vitti comes in, locks the door and has a full-blown panic
attack — gasping for breath, sweating, whimpering, trying to
stifle his panic. Then he sees his tortured face in the
mirror and starts pulling himself together.
INT. WAREHOUSE – FEW MINUTES LATER
The guys are getting into the trucks. Ben keeps letting
everybody go in front of him, then starts to back away, but
Eddie and Enormous Bobby come up behind him and push him up
into the truck.
EXT. MANHATTAN WAREHOUSE – NIGHT
The big doors open and two trucks roll out carrying Vitti,
Ben and the crew.
INT. LEAD TRUCK – SAME TIME
The guys are sitting on the floor in the back of the truck,
lined up along the sides like paratroopers waiting to jump.
Ben is sitting next to Jelly and across from Vitti who is
just staring intently.
EXT. WEST SIDE HIGHWAY – NIGHT
The trucks make their way past the aircraft carrier Intrepid
EXT. CONSTRUCTION SITE – NIGHT (LATER)
Vitti, Ben, and Eddie DeVol stand next to the treads of a
(checks his watch)
I have five to three. They should
start movin’ any minute.
(looking at his watch)
I have three-o-six.
Let’s see your watch.
Ben slips it off and hands it to him. Vitti smashes it on a
rock with the butt of his gun, then tosses it back to Ben.
Vitti’s RADIO SQUAWKS and the spotter’s voice is heard.
Vitti keys his radio twice as a signal and holds up his
clenched fist to alert the guys on site with him.
EXT. FEDERAL BUILDING – NIGHT
A CONVOY of vehicles emerges from the bowels of the building
and turns onto the street. In front and back are specially-
equipped SUVs, full of heavily-armed federal marshals; an
armored truck in the middle carries the gold.
EXT. ANOTHER STREET – SAME TIME
The convoy RUMBLES past a block-long, high-rise construction
site, totally enclosed by a plywood wall around the
He can hear the convoy passing outside the wall.
He looks down on the convoy from a vantage point on a
scaffold high above the street. When the trucks are in the
right position, he waves to Vitti on the ground.
sees the signal.
EXT. STREET – CONTINUOUS ACTION
A forty-foot, flat-bed trailer truck loaded with cement
conduit backs across the street and stops, blocking the path
of the convoy.
The lead SUV HONKS. The truck doesn’t move. The CAPTAIN of
the marshals gets out and walks up to the truck. The driver
has slipped out the other side and disappeared.
Suddenly, a huge steel claw drops down from above and closes
around the top of the armored truck, its sharp points
crunching into the metal sides. Then the truck starts rising
off the pavement. A couple of determined marshals jump out
of their vehicles, race over and grab onto the bumpers as the
armored truck is lifted off the ground.
EXT. CONSTRUCTION SITE – CONTINUOUS ACTION
A hundred-foot tower crane lifts the truck straight up. The
marshals hang on as long as they can, then prudently let go
and drop heavily to the street. Two marshals are still
clinging to the truck as it rises to a height of thirty feet,
then swings silently over the perimeter fencing.
INT. CONSTRUCTION SITE
A bank of arc lights is switched on illuminating the site as
the truck is lowered to the ground. Heavily-armed gangsters
in ski masks surround the truck and herd the driver, the
shotgun guard and the frightened marshals
into a construction shack, while men with acetylene torches
attack the back doors.
Vitti pulls down his ski mask and taps Ben.
Paul, it’s not too late. Don’t do
He strides off to take charge. Ben pulls down his mask and
hurries after him, but runs right into a pole.
He raises his mask and scampers after Vitti rubbing the
painful bump on his forehead.
EXT. STREET – SAME TIME
The marshals run around, frantically searching for a way into
the construction site.
Totally in charge, he strides up to the armored truck just as
his men finish cutting through the steel plate doors. Vitti
yanks the doors open..
Vitti and Ben stare in awe at the exposed contents of the
truck — a fortune in gold bars.
Get the ramp!
Eddie and his guys run up with a long, narrow track with
metal rollers and set it up at the rear of the gold truck.
You know, this might just fuckin’
You’re gonna get in so much trouble.
EXT. STREET – SAME TIME
The marshals are trying to climb over the construction site
wall, but they’re stopped by rolls of razor wire and
SUPPRESSING FIRE from inside the site.
They can’t get over the wire.
Then knock down the gates!
EXT. CONSTRUCTION SITE
The guys take the heavy bars out of the armored truck and run
them quickly along the rolling track into the bus.
INT. BUS – SAME TIME
Jelly is pulling on the hat and jacket of a transit authority
bus driver. The floor boards of the bus have been lifted out
and the guys are laying the gold bars in the hollow under the
(pops his head in)
Forty bars. That’s all we need.
How much is that?
$350 an ounce, 16 ounces in a pound,
90 pounds in each bar — do the math.
Actually, gold is measured in troy
ounces. 14.6 ounces to the pound.
That would be… $18,396,000.
Give or take.
He hears a LOUD CRASH and all eyes turn to the gates.
Well, so much for not peeing in my
Eddie goes off to help transfer the gold.
EXT. STREET – SAME TIME
The marshals back up one of the SUVs and run it into the
INT. CONSTRUCTION SITE
The big, wooden GATES SHUDDER but Vitti’s men roll two
enormous earthmovers up to reinforce the gates.
You know what you said about not
What did I do? What did I do? I had
a perfect life, I threw it away.
Don’t do this.
Vitti drags him off toward the building structure.
I can’t help it! My life is over!
I’m going to jail. Some people
can handle prison — I’m not one of
them. I have delicate features. I’m
small. I’ll be way too popular!
I can’t calm down! I’m gonna die!
Inside the structure, Vitti spins him around and shakes him.
You’re not gonna die!
I can’t breathe! I’m suffocating!
For Chrissake, get hold of yourself!
I can’t! I’m dying! We’re all going
Suddenly, he slaps Vitti hard across the face. They both
Did I just hit you?
Yeah. Feel better now?
I’m sorry, Paul. I blame myself for
this. I wanted to help you. I wanted
to be there for you. But I just
wasn’t good enough.
You were good. It isn’t your fault.
No, it is. Since my father
I’ve lost my way. I don’t know
anything anymore. I mean, what’s the
point? I didn’t think it would hit me
so hard —
Would you just shut up about your
I’m grieving, goddammit! Have a
He was an asshole — you said it
yourself. What are you grieving for?
I’m grieving for myself, you fucking
Ben lets it all go, sobbing for all the years of pain.
Jeez, I’m sorry.
Now I know how you must have felt when
your father was killed.
Vitti looks at him.
I mean, it had to be ten times worse
for you — being murdered right in
front of you. And you were so young –
We don’t have time for this.
It must’ve been so painful!
(eyes filling with
I’m warning you — don’t do
I mean, it’s like all his hopes for
you died with him. And that’s so sad.
(starting to cry)
There I go. You happy now? You see
what you’re doing here?
Both men are crying now.
Your father really loved you.
I loved him, too. I did.
I know. I know.
Jelly comes around the corner and sees the two men in a weepy
Oh, boy. This is bad.
Another huge CRASH as the marshals ram the gates again, this
time tearing loose one of the big hinges.
Maybe we oughta should go.
Vitti, Ben and Jelly run to the bus, but Eddie pulls a gun
and stops them. Al and Bobby cover Jelly and the rest of the
crew. Vitti backs away slowly.
Did you really think you were gonna
live through this?
I had my hopes.
Yeah, well, nice work. Mr. Rigazzi
will be very grateful.
Rigazzi? I thought he worked for
That’s what Patty thought, too. This
scumbag’s been playin’ both sides
against the middle.
There’s only one side as far as I’m
concerned. Mine. What did you think?
I was just gonna stand by and let some
fuckin’ has-been move back in? So
long, Mr. Vitti.
He cocks the gun and is about to pull the trigger when Ben
suddenly roars and slams him in the head with his gun. Vitti
and Jelly quickly cover Al Pacino and Enormous Bobby.
(beating the shit
out of Eddie)
I can’t take it anymore! That’s what
I hate about you fucking sociopaths!
You just keep changing the rules to
suit yourselves. Well, not this time,
you anti-social asshole. You fucked
with the wrong shrink!
Sitting on Eddie’s chest, he presses the gun against Eddie’s
Don’t you read the papers? The guy
with the gun makes the rules.
They shove Eddie, Enormous Bobby and Al Pacino into the back
of the armored truck, Vitti gives a signal and the crane
lifts it off the ground.
EXT. STREET – CONTINUOUS ACTION
The armored truck comes down fast and drops heavily to the
street. Federal MARSHALS swarm the truck and find Eddie, Al,
and Bobby sprawled in the back.
On the floor! Face-down! Now!
Nice goin’. Good plan.
What’s a sociopath?
The marshals handcuff them.
Suddenly, the marshals hear AUTOMATIC WEAPONS FIRE coming
from the next block.
Uniformed SWAT COPS come running from that direction and
shout to the marshals.
They’re escaping out the back! Get
over there! Move it!
The marshals rush toward the sound of the GUNFIRE and
disappear around the corner.
As the marshals round the corner, they see a police shoot-out
Wiseguys are FIRING AUTOMATIC WEAPONS at cops who are pinned
down behind police cruisers.
The Captain of the marshals FIRES a warning SHOT in the air.
(on a bullhorn)
Freeze! Drop your weapons!
The head wiseguy, Anthony Bella, turns in surprise.
What the hell is this?
(on his own bullhorn)
Cut, cut, cut! What the hell’s going
Raoul strides out into the street, furious, still talking
through his bullhorn.
(to the Captain)
Who are you? What are you doing in my
The Captain and the marshals look around and see that they’re
on the set of “Little Caesar.”
What are you doing on my street?
The Captain walks toward Raoul until they are almost face to
face, shouting at each other through their BULLHORNS.
I have a permit!
I don’t give a shit about your permit!
The ASSISTANT DIRECTOR addresses the TV crew.
All right, people. Back to one and
let’s try it again!
(into his walkie-talkie)
Release the traffic and reset for
On the perimeters of the set, the PA’s signal the off-duty
cops who work the set to release the real traffic they’ve
been holding on the cross streets.
A city bus passes behind Raoul and Tony Bella who are still
screaming at the Federal Marshal.
EXT. 11TH AVENUE – MINUTES LATER
In mid-block, SWAT cops step into the street and wave the bus
to a halt.
INT. BUS – SAME TIME
Ben is sitting in the back with Vitti as the helmeted SWAT
cops board the bus.
(sees them coming)
That’s it. We’re screwed.
The cops walk toward the back and confront Ben.
You’re one tough shrink.
The cops unmask. It’s Mo-Mo, Cokes, and Tuna. They laugh
and slap hands with Vitti and Ben.
EXT. STREET – CONTINUOUS ACTION
The bus pulls out and joins the flow of traffic heading
INT. BUS – MINUTES LATER
All the guys are looking pretty happy with their score.
Ben turns to Vitti.
Feeling pretty good, huh?
I felt worse.
So what now? You go on the run for
the rest of your life? Back to Sing
Sing? Or you turn up dead in an alley?
Those are my choices? What happened
to lying on a beach in Costa Rica
for the next twenty years? You
can’t let me enjoy this for five
Five minutes? And then what?
And then what? I’ll show you.
EXT. RIGAZZI PLUMBING AND HEATING – NEXT MORNING
A Rigazzi company van is forced open by a team of FBI agents led
by Agent Miller. Stacked inside are forty gold bars.
Agent Cerrone comes out of the building with Lou Rigazzi and
several associates in handcuffs.
U.S. Attorney Chapin makes a statement to the media.
Acting on intelligence we developed in
the last few days, the Justice
Department and the F.B.I. took very
aggressive action to recover the
stolen gold and bring the perpetrators
to justice. I’m happy to tell the
people of New York that the streets
are safe again.
EXT. PATTY’S HOUSE – SAME TIME
Vitti knocks on the front door. Patty answers it in her
Hi, Paul. How’d it go?
Not so good.
Yeah, I heard. It’s all over the
television. I never should’ve trusted
Eddie. But, you know, a woman alone
in the world is very vulnerable.
Yeah, I know.
At least I don’t have to worry about
the Rigazzis no more. Thanks to you.
I told you — I just want to be left
I know. I’ll make sure. How about
some breakfast? I could make you some
waffles and — whatever else you want.
She adjusts her robe, providing Vitti a quick peek.
Can’t do that.
Patty smiles and shrugs.
Well, if you ever change your mind —
Good luck, Paul.
EXT. EAST RIVER BOARDWALK – LATER MORNING
Ben is leaning against the railing gazing at the water when
Vitti walks up.
Did you see Patti?
Did she grab your balls?
What kind of question is that? She’s
cool. She’s just happy to have ‘the
Wrench’ out of the way.
Well, I talked to the U.S. Attorney.
Did he grab your balls?
No, Paul, he did not grab my balls.
He thanked me for tipping him off
about the gold. And he said he won’t
be coming after you if you stay out of
trouble. So what do you think?
I’m gonna go to Ohio — get Marie and
the kids — then we’ll probably
disappear for awhile — figure out all
this future stuff
— away from all the pressure.
Good idea. Change is hard, Paul. But
you did the right thing.
Yeah, you, too. You hung in there.
That took a lot of guts.
Well, I just —
No, you were like an animal back
I just vented my displaced aggression
No. I’m telling you. You’re a
monster. I saw the beast in you.
I’m not a beast. I can handle myself
if I have to —
Handle yourself? You were fuckin’
Well, I wrestled a bit in high school
— 122 pounds.
Yeah, I could tell. You’re good, you.
I’m not —
Paul, I just —
No. You are good. You got a gift, my
Ben gives up.
Fine. I have a gift.
So — happy ending, huh?
Well, I think so. Don’t you feel
Are you kidding? I feel like shit.
All that work for nothing. 20 million
You’re grieving — it’s a process.
Take it easy, Doc.
You, too, Paul.
They embrace. Then Vitti starts to walk away toward Jelly
who has been waiting at a respectful distance.
Vitti stops and turns.
‘There’s a place for us — ‘
‘A time and place for us — ‘
‘Hold my hand we’re halfway there — ‘
‘Hold my hand and I’ll take you there.
Somehow, someday, somewhere.’
The ORCHESTRA SWELLS as we CRANE UP TO the Brooklyn Bridge
and Lower Manhattan beyond.
FADED 8MM COLOR HOME MOVIE FOOTAGE
A little boy in a cowboy suit sitting on a pony as his father
leads him around the ring.