Through the Back Door

1
       FOREWORD.

This is a love story --
 A vision seen through
the tears of a mother --
and a forgotten child --

[dissolve to:]

2
It echoes the story God whispers
 to each tiny soul before He
blesses it with the miracle of Life
-- The story of mother-love.

3
In the summer of 1903,
 Ostend, on the coast of
Belgium, the playground
      of the rich.

4
Mme. Louise Bodamere,
 a widow with a child,
who is too modern to be 
a mother, too rich to 
be contented and too 
attractive to be single.

5
And so Elton Reeves
 has decided she is 
going to marry again.

6
Jeanne Bodamere, one of 
those lucky children of 
the rich, who can have
anything the heart desires
-- except a mother.

7
Marie Gaston, a good
 old soul, who is
old-fashioned enough
to really enjoy children.

8
"No one must ever come
   between us, dear.
 It'll be just we two --
 and the rest of the world."

9
"Louise, I'm fond of the baby
  too -- but -- well -- frankly
 -- I'm jealous of her."

10
"Don't be unreasonable, dear
  -- we probably won't see
 her more than once a day."

11
"Why -- you don't intend 
  to take her on the
 boat, do you? Imagine
 a honeymoon with the
 bride and groom nursing
 a five year old child!"

12
The sweet misery of good-bye
 -- when Louise sacrifices
the joy of being a mother for
the privilege of being a wife.

13
"Don't neglect Jeanne's English
  -- and if we shouldn't return
 as soon as Mrs. Reeves expects
 -- just try to make her happy."

14
"Mama's playing with me
   -- she's hidin'."

15
"Mama - - you're
 forgetting me!"

16
"Poor little baby --
  don't cry -- some
 day she may be sorry."

17
Five years later, on Marie's
 little farm in Belgium,
Jeanne now calls her old
   nurse Mamma Marie.

18
Marie's husband, Jacques.

19
Jeanne Bodamere .....

	Mary Pickford

[dissolve to:]

20
Born to the chase -- to the
 shoot -- to the hounds,
even the limitations of the 
farm have not dulled the 
instincts that make little 
Jeanne a great sportswoman.

21
"Any luck?"

22
"I'll kill that cat! He ate
  our fish! Hurry and
 catch him before he
 chokes on a bone!"

23
"It's from Jeanne's mother
  and was sent from Paris."

24
"She's coming tomorrow to
   take my Jeanne away.
 It's cruel! She didn't come
 back as she promised --
    She didn't care!"

25
"Perhaps she's sorry now 
 -- and wants her child."

26
"She bore Jeanne, but I
  have reared and loved
 her as my own and she
 rightfully belongs to me."

27
"Jeanne!"

28
"Jeanne -- come here to me!"

29
What we produce belongs 
  to the world -- --
What we possess, we work for.
       =============
This being Marie's contention
 she found courage to form
a desperate plan to hold
   Jeanne for her own.

30
"Go to the Vanderbrockens'
  for the day -- but remember
 Charlotte's temper and be careful
    not to make her angry."

31
"I don't have to make
  her angry -- her
  bunions do that."

32
"Are you sending Jeanne
  away today -- and her
 mother coming from Paris?"

33
"Please, dear, leave
 this matter to me."

34
The Vanderbrockens',
 a typical Belgian home,
where cleanliness is seen
   and not heard.

35
"It sounds like it's going to
     be a hot day - -
     Let's go someplace."

36
"Don't worry, it'll brush off
 -- it's just clean mud."

37
"Scrub that floor until it's
  as clean as you found it."

38
"I'd like to do it for you
  -- only Mama Marie
 needs me right away."

39
"I've brought some new
  clothes for Jeanne to
 wear back to America."

40
"Where is she?"

41
"Why don't you answer
     me, Marie?"

42
"Little Jeanne -- is dead."

43
"I did write you, madame,
    only last week."

44
"I'll never forgive myself
  for letting my husband
 persuade me to wait --
 and wait -- and wait ---"

45
"I never should have
  left my Jeanne at all.
 I didn't know how much
   she meant to me."

46
"Where is the grave?"

47
"It was -- the river --
  We never found her."

48
The surest way to lose
 your husband's devotion
for you is to lose your
    devotion for him.

49
"Come, dear -- you've cried
   now for three days --
 don't you think I deserve
  a little consideration?"

50
"What consideration did you
       show my baby?"

51
Never be deceived by
 the looks of a mule --
always expect the worst.

52
"Take me home and
  I'll let you sleep
  in the carrot-bin."

53
Five years later.

54
AUGUST
 1914

55
Braving the anguish of 
 separation, Marie sends
Jeanne to America --
    and safety.

56
"I -- I don't think I can go
  -- unless you promise ---
    to come to me later."

57
"When Belgium no longer
      needs me --"

58
"This is my complete confession
   -- witnessed by the good
 Father Laison. It will tell your
 mother who you are, with the
 word of the Church behind you."

59
"Good-bye."

60
"Good-bye."

61
The leaden light of a weary
  dawn, with the roads
of Belgium echoing to the 
tread of homeless feet.

62
"Mama went to sleep last night
  at the side of the road --
 and we couldn't wake her up."

63
"I'll take you with me to
   my mama in America."

64
Nearing America, the shelter
  which strangers think of
as the place where dreams
        come true.

65
As Jeanne pictures her mother
  -- genial, open-armed,
warm-hearted, broad-bosomed
and --- well, just a mother.

66
      ELLIS ISLAND.
The back door to America.

67
Imported Americans.

68
The desire to smuggle is felt
  by all and indulged by
the few - - - who travel.

69
The Reeves Estate
 on Long Island.

70
"Crawford, in the future
  confine this sort of
 thing to the servants'
       quarters."

71
"Where can I find
  Madame Reeves?"

72
"Mo--M--Madame Reeves."

73
"Crawford, I can't be annoyed
  with these children now --
 Please see that they are fed."

74
"Not that way - -
   through the back door."

75
"I -- I knew Madame
   Reeves in Belgium --
 I am -- a friend of hers."

76
"You'd better not remind
  her of it -- you're not
 the sort of person she's
 supposed to have known
      over there."

77
Visions evaporated, hopes
 collapsed, plans twisted,
Jeanne realizes that by
living in a world apart
from her mother she has
grown to be the daughter
of the peasant woman Marie.

78
"I am Belge too."

79
"I wanted to speak to
   Madame Reeves."

80
"Impossible -- but I can
    give you a job."

81
"How about my children?"

82
"You can hide them 
  over the garage --
 but don't tell the
   housekeeper."

83
Installed as a maid, Jeanne
  takes advantage of her
    first opportunity.

84
"Madame Reeves -- I -- I have ---
  something important --- to ----"

85
Billy Stokes, the boy
  next door, who has
radical ideas about life,
neckties and women --
You had them too at 17.

86
"I saw you fall --
   are you hurt?"

87
"No thanks -- just muddy."

88
Wondering where in the world
  he ever got the idea 
that women were an awkward 
  inconvenience in life.

89
By an uncanny coincidence,
  Billy Stokes stumbled
upon Jeanne again that after-
noon. This time it was Billy
         who fell.

90
"You really weren't hurt
 this morning, were you?"

91
"Hasn't it been a
  wonderful day?"

92
"Yes -- all day."

93
"Whose children are those?"

94
"They're mine."

95
"YOURS!"

96
The idle rich, who have
  time to waste, generally
waste it --- An edifying
"Saturday to Monday" at
    the Reeves home. 

97
Laugh and your husband laughs 
with you, weep, and he laughs
    with somebody else.

98
Out of the West had come
  Margaret Brewster --

99
-- and her brother, Jim.

100
"You know, I'm glad
   I met you - -
 you're changing my 
 ideas about women."

101
"I don't think your mother
  would approve of this, 
     Master Stokes."

102
"If you talk much longer
  you'll be late for dinner."

103
 Tonight Mrs. Reeves does not
  dress for dinner - - she
 dresses for her husband.
(The women will understand this.)

104
"What's that Brewster girl
   after you for - -
 a Wall Street tip for
    her brother?"

105
"Possibly she enjoys
     my company."

106
"Surely you don't think
  the young simpleton
 is really infatuated
 by a middle-aged, and
 rather fat man, like you!"

107
By another uncanny
  coincidence, they
deliberately met again
  in the evening.

108
"I brought a cake for
   - - your children."

109
"Why do you insist upon
   using perfume --
 and especially that
  sickening Jasmine?"

110
"I've been wanting to
   ask you something
 terribly embarrassing ---"

111
"---- are those children
      really yours?"

112
"Yes -- I found them."

113
"Oh -- that's good."

114
"What delightful perfume!"

115
"Yes -- it's Jasmine."

116
"Dinner is served."

117
At that feeble hour of the
   evening when guests
begin to wonder what time
   it's getting to be.

118
"When are you thinking of
    getting married?"

119
"Constantly."

120
Finding courage in the
 absence of the awesome
Mrs. Reeves to deliver the
confession of Mother Marie.

121
"I -- I just left something ---"

122
"Have you been using
    my perfume?"

123
"It was spilled -- I just
     sponged it up."

124
"Your brother tells me you
   cannot stay as long as
 you had planned -- and are
 leaving in the morning --"

125
"--- so I'll say
 good-bye now."

126
"Sh-h -- Don't shout
  -- Be sensible."

127
"You're the one who's
    not sensible - -
 objecting to my kissing
 that flabby-lipped Reeves."

128
"I'm objecting not only
  because you're my
 wife -- but you're
 spoiling our game."

129
"For Heaven's sake, Louise,
     be sensible."

130
"Either that woman leaves
   this house in the 
 morning - - or I do!"

131
"Very well -- if that's
     your choice."

132
"--- But it's a safe bet
 Reeves won't pay it
 to keep us from telling
 his wife something she
     already knows."

133
"I'm not worrying about
  the money -- When
 I'm Mrs. Elton Reeves
   I'll have plenty."

134
"Won't it be a little
 inconvenient -- to
 have two husbands?"

135
"Why -- I expect to
  divorce you, Jim."

136
"I don't care what you do
   after we put this over --
 but you're going through with
 my game first -- understand?"

137
"And just to make sure 
  that you'll be true
 to me, my dear, I'll
 lock you in for the night."

138
The Reeves' "Saturday
  to Monday" having 
developed a satisfactory
amount of scandal to last
from Monday to Saturday,
  the guests depart.

139
Uneasy lies the head
 - - that rests on
a pair of shoe trees
     all night.

140
"Your infernal whimpering
  has driven me to look
 elsewhere for congeniality
 -- you can blame yourself
 if I have compromised that
 girl -- and if I have to
       make amends."

141
"Amends! -- to her --
  but what of me?"

142
"Your vanity has been hurt --
  but her honor is at stake."

143
"The Brewsters aren't
   honorable - -
   they're married."

144
"What are you talking about?"

145
"He called her his wife!
  -- I heard him! --
 And they're trying to
   get your money."

146
"You're lying! Someone put
  you up to this -- you --"

147
"Elton, please reserve
  your temper for me."

148
"Please -- lady -- don't cry.
    You still have me."

149
"Did you get my letter?"

150
"No -- please go away."

151
"Oh, lady --- I'm ---
  we're -- related."

152
"Please -- go -- and
  let me be -- alone."

153
"Aren't you going home
      in my car?"

154
"No."

155
"I told you once 
  I'd divorce you
 -- and I meant it."

156
"You might save time by
 using one of our cars,
    Mrs. Brewster."

157
"It's been very nice
    to know you."

158
Her passport to America
 -- the only remaining
 proof of who she is.

159
"Jeanne -- my Jeanne."

160
"My own, dear, little girl
   -- why didn't you
    tell me before?"

161
"I -- I was afraid you'd
    be ashamed of me."

162
Marie Gaston, in Belgium,
  receives news that
  cheers her heart.

163
If it were not for New York
 hotels, where would
elopers, divorcees and 
red plush furniture go?

[dissolve to:]

164
At the Hotel Knickerbocker.

165
"Mother! Mother!"

166
"Now what do I do?"

167
Mrs. Stokes took heart-sick
  Billy to New York to
convalesce -- and walked
him right up the corridor
      to a relapse.

168
"This is my daughter Jeanne.
  She has been at school in
 Belgium for several years."

169
"Has Billy ever been 
     in Belgium?"

170
"You know -- I lo-- I mean
 -- you're -- you're the --"

THE END

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