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Noises Off... (1992) Poster

(1992)

Quotes

Dotty: Am I in Spain? No I'm not in Spain, dear, I'm in agony, that's where I am!

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Lloyd: I'm starting to know what God felt like when he sat out there in the darkness, creating the world.

Belinda: And what did he feel like, Lloyd my dear?

Lloyd: Very pleased he'd taken his Valium.

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Gary: Lloyd, let me just say one thing, since we've stopped. I've worked with a lotta directors, Lloyd. Some of them were geniuses, some of them were bastards. But I've never met one who was so totally and absolutely... I don't know.

Lloyd: Thank you Gary, I'm very touched. Now will you get off the fucking stage?

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Dotty: And I take the sardines. No, I leave the sardines. No, I take the sardines.

Lloyd: You leave the sardines and you hang up the phone.

Dotty: Yes, right. I hang up the phone.

Lloyd: And you leave the sardines.

Dotty: I leave the sardines?

Lloyd: You leave the sardines.

Dotty: I hang up the phone and I leave the sardines?

Lloyd: Right!

Dotty: We've changed that, have we, dear?

Lloyd: No, dear...

Dotty: That's what I've always been doing?

Lloyd: I wouldn't say that, Dotty my precious.

Dotty: Well, how about the words, dear, am I getting some of them right?

Lloyd: Some of them have a very familiar ring.

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Dotty: Now I've lost the newspaper!

[exits]

Lloyd: Sardines!

Gary: [to Brooke] I'm sorry about this.

Brooke: [to Gary] That's all right. We don't want the television, do we?

Lloyd: SARDINES!

Dotty: [re-entering] I forgot the sardines.

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Lloyd: [Barging in from the house] What the *fuck* is going on?

Belinda: Lloyd!

Frederick: Holy cow!

Poppy: I didn't know you were here.

Lloyd: I'm not. I'm in New York. But I can't sit out there and listen to two minutes, three minutes, one minute, two minutes!

Belinda: Lloyd! We're having big dramas back here!

Lloyd: We're having big dramas out *there!* This is a matinee, Love! There are senior citizens out there! "The curtain will rise in three minutes," we all start for the gents! "The curtain will rise in one minute," we all start running out again! We don't know which way we're going!

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Lloyd: And God said, "Where the Hell is Tim?" And there the Hell was Tim. And God said, "Let there be doors that open when they open, and close when they close."

Tim: Do something?

Lloyd: Doors!

Tim: I was getting the bananas for the sardines.

Lloyd: DOORS!

Tim: Doors?

Lloyd: I bet God had a stage manager who understood English, too!

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Dotty: Oh, yes, dear. Everything's all nice and paranormal here.

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Dotty: Lucky I can't see far with this leg.

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Selsdon: Am I on?

Belinda: No, no, no, no.

Dotty: No.

Selsdon: Oh, I thought I heard my voice.

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Lloyd: Tim, let me tell you about my life in the Big Apple. I have Hamlet's ghost on the phone for an hour every evening after rehearsal complaining that Polonius is sucking sourballs through his speeches. Claudius is off every afternoon doing a soap, and Gertrude is off the entire week doing a commercial for Gallo wine. Hamlet himself, would you believe, has come down with a psychological problem. Then, last night, Brooke rings me to say that she's very unhappy here and she's got herself a doctor's certificate for nervous exhaustion. I haven't got the time to find and rehearse a new Vicky. I have just one afternoon, while Hamlet sees his shrink and Ophelia starts divorce proceedings, to cure Brooke of her nervous exhaustion with no medical aids, except a little whiskey - you've got the whiskey - a few flowers - you've got money for the flowers - and a certain fading bedside manner. So, I haven't come to the theater to hear about other people's probelms. I've come to be taken out of myself, and, preferably, not put back again.

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Usher: Mr. Fellowes, uh, is there anything wrong with your seat?

Lloyd: [thinking] Yeah, it's facing the stage!

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Selsdon: So, what's next on the bill?

Lloyd: Well, Selsdon, I thought we might try a spot of rehearsal.

Selsdon: Oh, I won't, thank you.

Lloyd: You won't?

Selsdon: No, you all go ahead. I'll just sit and watch. This is the beer in the wardrobe, is it?

Belinda: No, my dear, he wants us to rehearse.

Selsdon: Yes, but I think we gotta rehearse, haven't we?

Lloyd: Rehearse! Yes, Selsdon. Well done. I knew you'd think of something.

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Lloyd: Think of the first night as the dress rehearsal. If we can just get through the play once tonight - for doors and sardines. That's what it's all about, doors and sardines. Getting on, getting off. Getting the sardines on, getting the sardines off. That's farce. That's - that's the theatre. That's life.

[pause]

Belinda: God, Lloyd, you're so deep.

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Lloyd: I'm just God, Belinda, love. I'm just the one with the English degree. I don't *know* anything.

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Lloyd: Like the band playing on as the Titanic sank.

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Lloyd: I'm not running away. I'm just not the kind of person who gets a kick out of watching an automobile crash, particularly when it's my automobile! It's gonna be the worst catastrophe Broadway has ever seen. They're gonna forget their lines, the set will fall down. None of us will get out of New York alive; they've got big pictures of us in the lobby. I'll get on a plane. I should've got on a plane when we first opened in Des Moines! I should've got on a plane *before* we opened in Des Moines! I should've got on a plane at the dress rehearsal! As soon as that curtain went up at the beginning of act one! As soon as that damn phone rang and Dotty came on with that first plate of sardines!

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Lloyd: As long as Dotty's happy.

Dotty: Absolutely happy, Lloyd dear.

Lloyd: Would you do something for me, then, Dotty, my precious?

Dotty: Anything, Lloyd sweetheart.

Lloyd: Take the sardines off with you.

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Dotty: Sardines! I've forgotten the sardines...

[She notices the sardines sitting on the table and stares at them for a moment]

Dotty: No I 'aven't; I 'aven't forgotten the sardines. I remembered the sardines. Well, what a surprise; I guess I'll just go into the kitchen and fix some more sardines to celebrate!

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Dotty: [referring to the fact that Tim is taking Freddy's place because Freddy slipped on some sardines backstage] You haven't hurt himself, have you?

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Brooke: You can't even get the door open.

[and, in fact, Gary can't]

Lloyd: [distant] Hold it.

Frederick: [entering with Belinda] Yes, but this is Mrs. Clackett's afternoon off.

Lloyd: [a little louder] Hold it!

Frederick: We've got the place entirely to ourselves.

Belinda: Look at it.

Lloyd: [Freddy tries to close the door but can't] HOLD IT!

[they continue to try to open or close their respective doors]

Lloyd: And God said HOLD IT!

[they stop]

Lloyd: And they held it. And God saw that it was TERRIBLE!

Gary: Sorry, folks. The door won't open.

Belinda: Sorry, folks, this door won't close.

Lloyd: And God said, "POPPY!"

Frederick: Sorry folks, am I doing something wrong? You know how stupid I am about doors.

Belinda: Freddy, darling, you're doing it perfectly.

Frederick: As long as it wasn't me that broke it.

Lloyd: [Poppy comes on stage] ... And there was Poppy. And God said, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fetch Tim to fix the doors."

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Lloyd: Nothing could have prepared us for the final horror: Cleveland!

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Lloyd: Don't fall down, Tim. We may not be insured.

[Tim falls down]

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[Tim has had to go on for Freddy]

Dotty: Who the hell are you?

Tim: [bad British accent] I'm Phillip.

Dotty: What happened to you?

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Lloyd: You hang up the phone, you leave the sardines, and you got out with the NEWSPAPER!

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Lloyd: [dressed as the burglar] I've been working on Hamlet for the past six weeks.

Dotty: Do you think he needs working on more than we do?

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[Dotty enters with the detached receiver and a small shovel]

Dotty: I've just come for me sardines.

[Gary yells in surprise, she gives a sarcastic yell back]

Gary: Well, I'm sorry, I thought there was no one here.

Dotty: I'm not here. I don't know where I am.

Gary: I'm from the agency.

[she tries to put the receiver down, but finds that the rest of the phone is missing]

Dotty: Lost the phone now.

Gary: Squire, Squire, Hackem and Dudley.

Dotty: Never lost the phone before.

Gary: I'm Tramplemain.

Dotty: I know, I'll just put it up here in case anyone wants it, look!

[she hangs the receiver on a lampshade]

Gary: Oh, right, thanks. No, no, I just dropped in to go into a few things - well, to check some of the measurements - do one or two odd jobs.

Dotty: Now the plate's gone.

Gary: Oh, and a client: I'm showing a prospective tenant over the house.

Brooke: What's wrong with this door?

[Dotty begins looking under the sofa cushions for the plate]

Gary: She's thinking of renting it, her interest is definitely aroused!

Brooke: [bursting out of the bathroom] That's not the bedroom!

[Dotty looks behind the sofa]

Gary: The bedroom? No, no, no, that's the downstairs bathroom and WC suite! And this is the housekeeper, Mrs. Crocket.

[he walks onto the sardines on the floor]

Dotty: Sardines! Here, sardines!

Brooke: Oh, hi!

Gary: She's not really here.

Dotty: You *stepped* on 'em!

[she pounds Gary's feet with the shovel]

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Lloyd: Brooke?

Brooke: Yes?

Lloyd: Are you in?

Brooke: In?

Lloyd: Are you there?

Brooke: What?

Lloyd: You're out. Okay. I'll call again.

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Lloyd: I don't know what you're waiting for. Her eighteenth birthday?

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Lloyd: On we blindly stumble!

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[looking for Selsdon]

Frederick: I'm sure he wouldn't. Not during a tech rehearsal.

Dotty: Half a chance, he would!

Brooke: Would what?

DottyGaryLloyd: [Gesturing drink in hand] Glck! Glck! Glck!

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Belinda: Poor Lloyd. He'll choke on his Gummi Bears.

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Poppy: Well, I'm sorry, but, you've got to hear, because I'm... PREGNANT!

[pause]

Lloyd: And curtain!

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Frederick: Alright, I see all that.

Lloyd: Oh no.

Frederick: I just don't know why I take them.

Lloyd: Freddy love, why does anyone do anything? Why does that other idiot go out of the front door holding two plates of sardines? I mean, I-I'm not getting at you, love.

Gary: Course not, Lloyd. I mean, why do I? I mean, Jesus, when you come to think about it, why *do* I?

Lloyd: Who knows?

Gary: Who knows. You see, Freddy?

Lloyd: The wellsprings of human action are deep and cloudy. Maybe something happened to you when you were a very, very, very small child that made you frightened to let go of groceries.

Belinda: Or it could be genetic.

Gary: Yes, or it could be... you know.

Lloyd: Could-could well be.

Frederick: Of course, thank you. I understand all that, but...

Lloyd: Freddy love, I'm telling you I don't know. I-I don't think the *author* knows. I don't know why the author came into this industry in the first place. I don't know why any of us came into it.

Frederick: All the same, if you could just give me a reason I could keep in my mind.

Lloyd: Alright, I'll give you a reason then. You carry those groceries into the study, Freddy honey, because it's just slightly after midnight, and we're not going to be finished before we open tomorrow night - Correction. Before we open TONIGHT!

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LloydTimSelsdon: When I think, I used to do banks. When I remember, I used to do boullion vaults.

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Lloyd: Right, from Belinda and Freddy's entrance.

[Poppy comes running onstage]

Lloyd: Oh my God, what's happened now?

Poppy: The police.

Lloyd: The police?

Poppy: They found an old man lying unconscious in the doorway just across the street...

Lloyd: Oh, yes, thank you.

Poppy: ...and they say he's *very* dirty and pretty smelly...

Lloyd: Yes, thank you, Po...

Poppy: ...and I thought, "oh my God," because-because when you get close to Selsdon...

Belinda: Poppy!

Poppy: ...no, no, I mean, if you stand anywhere *near* Selsdon, you can't help noticing this very distinctive...

[She sniffs and stops dead]

Selsdon: I'll tell you something, Poppy. Once you get it in your nostrils, you never forget it. Sixty years now, and the smell of the theatre still haunts me.

[He walks away]

Belinda: Bless him!

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[Dotty, completely distracted, now has the phone cord wrapped around her and an empty plate in her hands. The sardines lie on the floor next to her]

Dotty: ...not in Spain, they're next to the... study, in the phone! Squire, Squire, Hackem an'... hold on!

[She drops the receiver, which dangles from her neck. She looks around]

Dotty: I'm going to do something wrong here.

[She looks at the empty plate]

Dotty: Oh yes! Oh yes, always the *same*, innit? Soon as you got too much on your *plate,* there you go puttin' your foot in it, and...

[she walks right onto the sardines on the floor]

Dotty: Oh, speak of the devil! They go puttin' their foot in it now, won't they? Well, we'll take care o' that:

[She unfolds the newspaper to lay on top of the sardines]

Dotty: I'll just put that there. Look, see? That'll keep 'em out of 'arm's way.

[picks up the empty plate and begins to exit, dragging the phone by the chord that's still wrapped around her]

Dotty: What I'm holdin' now I don't know. And off I go at last!

[she spins as she leaves to untangle the phone cord]

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Gary: Is there anyone *else* in the house. Mrs. Clackett?

Dotty: I ain't seen no one, dear.

Gary: Well, I-I thought I heard boxes... I mean I found these voices.

Dotty: Voices? There's no voices 'ere, Love.

Gary: I must've imagined it.

Frederick: Oh my Go-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-d!

[as he yells, an amazing crash is heard backstage]

Gary: [pause] I *beg* your pardon?

Dotty: [She takes a deep breath] Oh my Go-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-d!

[as she yells, she bangs things together and knocks things off tables to make loud noises]

Gary: [Another pause] Why, what is it?

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[everyone except Poppy and Tim are on-stage and have no idea where they are or what to do now]

Lloyd: I've got to get the 8:40 to New York!

Poppy: [Lloyd opens the door to find Poppy wrapped in sheets, playing Freddy's part] Ah! House of heavenly peace! I rent it.

Dotty: Oh! It's the other one! And in her wedding dress.

Belinda: Yes, yes, it's their wedding day!

All: Oh!

Belinda: What a happy ending... to the... to the first act!... Of their new life together! And they just want to be alone in their new home... if only someone would pull the shades!

[Indicates that the curtain should come down]

Tim: [Tim enters in the black sheets, prepared to play Brooke's part] Come in?

Dotty: Oh, and it's the mother of the bride.

Tim: Go out?

All: Pull the shades!

[Tim runs out to lower the curtain]

Selsdon: Last line?

All: Last line!

Selsdon: I'll tell you one thing, Vicky.

All: [Dotty slaps Vicky, who loses a contact lens and goes looking for it] What's that, Dad?

Selsdon: When all around is strife and uncertainty, there's nothing like an old fashioned plate of, uh... curtain!

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Lloyd: What's the line, Freddy?

Frederick: [with glue on his pants] I've heard of people getting stuck with the problem...

Lloyd: *stuck* with the problem.

Frederick: *stuck* with the problem?

Lloyd: *stuck* with the problem.

Frederick: I've heard of people getting *stuck* with the problem, but this is ridiculous!

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Selsdon: [forgetting his lines] A line? A prompt?

All: [shouting] Get the van loaded!

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Lloyd: WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?

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Lloyd: [They are discussing why the sheik looks like Phillip] It is kind of a coincidence, Freddy. Until you reflect that there was an earlier draft of the play, now unfortunately lost to us, and in this the author makes it clear that Phillip's father, as a young man, traveled extensively in the middle east...

Frederick: I see. Oh, I see!

Lloyd: You see!

Frederick: That's very interesting.

Lloyd: I thought you'd like that.

Frederick: But will the audience get it?

Lloyd: Well, you must show them Freddy. With looks, with gestures. That's what acting is all about. Ok?

Frederick: Yes, thank you Lloyd. Thank you.

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[Brooke has lost one of her contact lenses]

Belinda: Which one is it this time?

Brooke: Left.

Gary: It's the *left* one, everybody!

Poppy: Left one.

BelindaPoppyFrederick: [shouting] Left one!

[Everyone starts looking around for it]

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[first lines]

Usher: Curtains going up! Curtains going... up! Curtains going up!

Lloyd: [voiceover] A big Broadway opening. Everybody who's anybody in New York is inside this theater tonight. Everybody but one man. This man - ME!

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See also

Trivia | Goofs | Crazy Credits | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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