Four Rooms

The camera comes to rest on an old photograph of a 1930s hotel, the "Mon
Signor," in its heyday, with a full staff of 30 people posed on the lawn in
front.

An old guy with a staccato voice delivers a monologue:

VOICE-OVER

There used to be a staff of fifty in this place. I'm the only

one left from those days. It all comes down to one sap: the

night-shift bellhop, that's me. What the hell is a bellhop?

You know where the name comes from?

(silence)

Of course not. . . . It's so simple it's stupid. They ring a bell

and you hop. You hop to front and center. No heroes in this

line, kid. Just men doing a job. No questions asked, none

answered. I try to keep it simple, kid, not too personal. . . .

Another voice of a young man interrupts.

TED

You met any of those old stars?

THE OLD GUY

Stars! Are you kidding me? I took Rin Tin Tin out for a

shit, for Christ's sakes. I taught Shirley Temple how to

roller-skate. I saw Fatty Arbuckle regurgitate three cheese

sandwiches right on the spot you're sitting, kid. What did

you say your name was?

TED

Ted.

THE OLD GUY

Ted, right. I remember Marilyn used to come down at night

and doze off in the kitchen. She liked the sound of the fans

out back spinning around. Sure, these were stars, kid. Errol

Flynn used to call me "Alibi." You'll pick up a few stories

yourself, kid.

TED

I don't think so, not like yours.

THE OLD GUY

What do you think a star does when he goes to the bathroom, kid?

TED

Beats me.

THE OLD GUY

He pulls his pants down and takes a crap just like you and

me. Take my word for it.

A wisp of smoke passes over a napkin pinned to the wall with a lip print on
it signed "Marilyn." The camera pulls back to reveal Ted and the Old Guy
sitting on a foldup cot in a small back room of the Hotel Mon Signor. The old man is dressed in a striped T-shirt with a bellhop's cap on. He looks
like an old pirate. Next to him on the bed sits Ted, a young guy with a
bellhop jacket draped over his knees. The old bellhop takes a long drag off a big cigar.

THE OLD GUY

Camacho!

TED

Who?

THE OLD GUY

The cigar. Cuban. A good cigar, wrapped in Miami. I get a

box of them every Christmas from the chairman of the

board. I think he sends them to me to keep my mouth shut.

It's tough not to get a little personal in this business.

The old bellhop takes a hit off his cigar and stares down at his cap, lost
in thought.

TED

What do you mean?

The old guy passes the cap over to Ted.

THE OLD GUY

Put it on.

Ted puts the cap on.

THE OLD GUY

Frankly, you look stupid . . . like the Philip Morris guy. I

can't believe I wore that thing for fifty years. You keep it.

The Old Guy gets up from the bed and throws a jacket on. Pulls a few
postcards off the wall, throws them in an old straw suitcase, and slams the
lid down. He heads for the door. Ted follows.

THE OLD GUY

Stay away from night clerks, kids, hookers, and marital disputes.

The Old Guy pauses for a second and looks Ted dead in the eye.

THE OLD GUY

Never have sex with the clientele.

TED

No way, not me. You got any other advice.

THE OLD GUY

Always get a tip.

The door slams shut on the back room.

INT. HOTEL LOBBY--TWILIGHT

The big empty lobby of the Mon Signor. You can tell that at one point this
used to be a swank place. It's also kinda decrepit. The
concierge--a snappy, fast-talking, red-haired young woman in a blue blazer
named Betty--stands behind the reception desk. The old man, suitcase in
hand, makes a beeline through the lobby, heading toward the front door.
Betty sees him.

BETTY

Sam! Hey, Sam, wait a minute!

The Old Guy stops in his tracks and turns around.

THE OLD GUY

What?

Betty comes from behind the desk.

BETTY

I just want to say good-bye.

THE OLD GUY

Who are you?

BETTY

Uhhh, Betty. The concierge. Your boss.

The Old Guy squints his eyes at the young gal.

THE OLD GUY

Oh yeah. Gotta light, sister? Goddam cigar went out.

BETTY

Yeah, sure.

She speaks to the Old Guy as she lights his cigar and he puffs away.

BETTY

I just want you to know, from the owner and all the staff,

your fifty years of service have been an inspiration to us all.

You're a legend in your own time, and the Mon Signor will

never be the--

THE OLD GUY

Just forward my cigars, Red.

(He turns around the walks out, saying over his shoulder)

Aufwiedersehen!

Betty is left standing in the lobby. Ted appears behind her in his bellbody
uniform, sans cap.

TED

Sam the bellboy. Now there was a man.

BETTY

Yeah. Oh, hi, Teddy. Ready to start the night shift?

TED

Yeah.

BETTY

Well, let me buy you a drink.

TED

You wanna buy me a drink? I'm starting my shift.

BETTY

You're not an alcoholic, are you; one drink won't kill you.

TED

Yeah, sure.


BETTY

After fifty years, Sam retires, and you're taking over the night shift.

TED

Correct.

BETTY

You're filling some mighty big shoes.

TED

Oh, I know.

BETTY

Sam was a legend in the hotel business.

TED

Oh, I know . . .

BETTY

A bellhop's bellhop.

TED

An inspiration to us all.

BETTY

He ran the night desk for fifty years, all by himself.

TED

An amazing man.

BETTY

No desk clerk. No night man. No help. Just fuckin' Sam,

and his wits.

TED

A man alone.

BETTY

And you're gonna do the same.

TED

I know.

BETTY

Tonight.

Ted spews his drink.

TED

Tonight!

BETTY

Yes, tonight.

TED

I can't.

BETTY

Yes, you can.

TED

No, I can't. I never worked the night shift before.

BETTY

Oh night shift--smight shift.

TED

We were supposed to work it together.

BETTY

I know, but I can't.

TED

Why not?

BETTY

I'm having a New Year's Eve party.

TED

Since when?

BETTY

Actually, I'm not having it. My roommate is. And there's

this guy. German guy. He's gonna be there. And so am I.

TED

I can't run this place by myself.

BETTY

Oh, sure ya can.

TED

No, I can't.

BETTY

Sam ran this place by himself for fifty years.

TED

Yeah, and he had fifty years of fuckin' practice, too. I

haven't had a day.

BETTY

Look, Teddy, calm down--

TED

--Don't call me Teddy.

BETTY

Ted, the night's cake. It's easy. The day's when it's busy.

During the night there's nothing to do.

TED

It's New Year's Eve.

BETTY

Which'll make it less busy than normal. Ever worked on

Christmas? Unless you sell turkeys, business is dead. You

just got butterflies, that's all.

TED

What I have ain't butterflies. I can't handle this hotel all by myself.

Betty slows the scene down.

BETTY

Okay, let's calm down a minute. Slow it down, cool it off.

Let's just talk.

TED

You can say any goddamn thing you want--

BETTY

--Ted? I thought we were calming down? I thought we were

cooling off? No hostility. Say good-bye to hostility. We're

just talking.

TED

Okay . . . okay . . . okay . . . I'm calm, I'm cool, let's talk.

BETTY

Ted, in a nutshell, all you have to do is hold the fort. It's

New Year's Eve. Most of the guests are going out. You'll

just be giving them a little nod as they come staggering in

at three . . . four . . . five . . . in the morning. Nobody's

having any parties, a few get-togethers, but no parties. You

got about three people checking in tonight, that's it. The

only variable is Chester Rush in the penthouse.

TED

Chester Rush? The guy from The Wacky Detective?

BETTY

Yeah, him and his entourage checked in last night. They're

in the penthouse. The only reason I refer to it as a variable

is that he's a movie star. Ya never know about movie stars.

I'm tellin' ya, Ted, it's cake.

Betty takes a piece of paper and writes her number down.

BETTY

(continuing)

And look, if you have any problems, call me at the party.

Ted thinks about it for a moment.

TED

Okay.

BETTY

Great--

TED

--For fifty bucks.

BETTY

Fifty bucks!

TED

You're shirking your duties for this Nazi. For that you pay

a price, and the price is fifty bucks.

BETTY

One, Horst is not a Nazi. Two, that's not a fair price. You're

taking advantage of the situation. Twenty bucks. Now,

twenty bucks is a fair price.

TED

Yeah, but what you're doin' to me ain't fair. And, you are

completely and totally taking advantage of me and your

position. So fifty bucks is the perfect price.

Betty begrudgingly digs in her purse.

BETTY

Okay, but don't be a pussy. You don't bother me unless it's

an emergency. In fact, for fifty bucks, you better not call me

unless the fuckin' building's burning down.

She gives him the money.

BETTY

Get ready to take the desk.

Betty leaves.

Ted sits in the chair, takes another drink, and prepares himself for the
night.


begrudgingly - zawistnie , zazdrośnie
bellhop - boy hotelowy
buck - dolar
(it’s) cake - to bułka z masłem
calm down - uspokoić się
check in - meldować się (w hotelu)
clientele - klientela, klienci
come down to - sprowadzać się do
cool off - odparować, uspokoić się
cot- łóżko
crap - gówno
decrepit - zniszczony, rozpadający się
doze off - drzemać, zapadać w drzemkę
drag - ciągnąć się, zaciągnięcie
drape - drapować; zasłona
emergency - niebezpieczeństwo
entourage - otoczenie, świta
foldup- rozkładany
gal- dziewczyna
go out - tu: gasnąć
handle - prowadzić, radzić sobie z
have got butterflies (in one’s stomach)
head for - zmierzać do, iść w kierunku
heyday- pełnia rozkwitu
hooker - prostytutka, dziwka
hostility - wrogość
lid - pokrywka
make a beeline - iść najkrótszą trasą, najkrótszą drogą
marital - małżeński
mighty - wielki
night-shift - nocna zmiana
puff away - wydmuchiwać dym
regurgitate - zwracać (pokarm)
roller-skate - jeździć na wrotkach
run (a hotel, a company) - prowadzić (hotel, firmę)
sans - bez
snappy - energiczny; zgryźliwy
spew - wypluwać
spin around - kręcić się, obracać się dookoła
squint - patrzeć z przymrużonymi oczyma; zezować
staccato - przerywany, sylabizowany
stagger - zataczać się
swank - ekskluzywny
take advantage of - wykorzystywać
variable - zmienna
wisp - smuga
wits - przytomność umysłu
wrap - owijać, zawijać


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