The Court Jester (1955)
Hawkins: Life could not better be / Better be, better be / It could not possibly / No sirrah, sir-rah, sirree! / Songs could not gayer be / Sound your do-re-o-mi, re-mi-fa-so-la-see, fa-la-la-la follow me! / Why be gloomy? / Cut thy nose off to spite thy face? / Listen to me / A nose is hard to replace! / Skies could not bluer be / Hearts in love truer be / I say for you or me / Life couldn't possibly, not even probably / Life couldn't possibly better be! Life could not better be / On a medieval spree / Knights full of chivalry / Villains full of villainy! / You see, as you suspect / Maidens fair in silks bedecked / Each pride and true effect / For the umpteenth time we resurrect! / We did research / Authenticity was a must! / Zooks! Did we search! / And what did we find? Ah-choo! A lot of dust! / After the dust had cleared / Half the cast had a beard / And I'm the one, as you can see / For whom the bell tolls merrily. / We asked Shakespeare / And Francis Bacon, "Would they declare / which one wrote this?" / And they both said, "Get outta there!" / Which brings us to the plot / Plot we've got quite a lot / As it unfolds, you'll see / What starts like a scary tale, ends like a fairy tale / And life couldn't possibly better be!
Hawkins: I've got it! I've got it! The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle; the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true! Right?
Griselda: Right. But there's been a change: they broke the chalice from the palace!
Hawkins: They *broke* the chalice from the palace?
Griselda: And replaced it with a flagon.
Hawkins: A flagon...?
Griselda: With the figure of a dragon.
Hawkins: Flagon with a dragon.
Hawkins: But did you put the pellet with the poison in the vessel with the pestle?
Griselda: No! The pellet with the poison's in the flagon with the dragon! The vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true!
Hawkins: The pellet with the poison's in the flagon with the dragon; the vessel with the pestle has the brew that is true.
Griselda: Just remember that.
Hubert Hawkins: [disguised as an old man] Have you seen a group in the forest?
[Jean, pretending to be a deaf mute, makes a lot of hand gestures in response]
Hubert Hawkins: She says, "No."
Captain of the Guard: What took her so long?
Hubert Hawkins: Stutters.
Hawkins: When I was a lad, I was gloomy and sad / As I was from the day I was born / When other babes giggled, and gurgled and wiggled / I proudly was loudly forlorn. / My friends and my family, looked at me clammily / Thought there was something amiss / When others found various antics hilarious / All I could manage was this
[looks at his hands]
Hawkins: or this
[gives a small smile]
Hawkins: or this
[gives a short giggle]
Hawkins: or this
[gives a weird giggle/whimper]
Hawkins: My father he shouted, "he needs to be clouted / His teeth on a wreath I'll hand him!" / My mother she cried, as she rushed to my side / "You're a brute and you don't understand him!" / So they sent for a witch with a terrible twitch / To ask how my future impressed her / She took one look at me / And cried, "He, he, he, he, he, he, he, he, he, *HE*! / What else could he be but a jester?" / A jester? A jester? A funny idea, a jester / No butcher, no baker, no candlestick maker / And me with the look of a fine undertaker / Impressed her as a jester? / But where was I to learn any comical turn? / It was not in a book on a shelf / No teacher to take me, to mold me and make me / A merry man, fool or an elf / But I'm proud to recall that in no time at all / with no other recourses but my own resources / with firm application and determination/ I made a fool of myself!
King Roderick: The Duke. What did the Duke do?
Hubert Hawkins: Eh... the Duke do?
King Roderick: Yes. And what about the Doge?
Hubert Hawkins: Oh, the Doge!
King Roderick: Eh. Well what did the Doge do?
Hubert Hawkins: The Doge do?
King Roderick: Yes, the Doge do.
Hubert Hawkins: Well, uh, the Doge did what the Doge does. Eh, uh, when the Doge does his duty to the Duke, that is.
King Roderick: What? What's that?
Hubert Hawkins: Oh, it's very simple, sire. When the Doge did his duty and the Duke didn't, that's when the Duchess did the dirt to the Duke with the Doge.
King Roderick: Who did what to what?
Hubert Hawkins: Oh, they all did, sire. There they were in the dark; the Duke with his dagger, the Doge with his dart, Duchess with her dirk.
King Roderick: Duchess with her dirk?
Hubert Hawkins: Yes! The Duchess dove at the Duke just when the Duke dove at the Doge. Now the Duke ducked, the Doge dodged, and the Duchess didn't. So the Duke got the Duchess, the Duchess got the Doge, and the Doge got the Duke!
King Roderick: Curious. I... I... hm? What? What's that? All I heard was that the Duchess had a siege of rheumatism. She's 83, you know.
Hubert Hawkins: I'd like to get in, get on with it, get it over with, and get out. Get it?
Ravenhurst: Got it.
Hubert Hawkins: Good.
King Roderick: Take that horse and put it back under that idiot!
Princess Gwendolyn: Marry Griswold? Never!
King Roderick: What was that?
Princess Gwendolyn: He's a brute and a lout.
King Roderick: Brute or not, lout or not, if it pleases me you will marry Griswold.
Princess Gwendolyn: If it pleases you so much, you marry Griswold.
Hawkins: [speaking to Gwendolyn] Caution is for popinjays and cockatoos!
[Gwendolyn's bird squawks almost indignantly]
Hawkins: [bowing to the bird] Begging your pardon.
King: You spent some time in the Italian court?
Hawkins: Why, yes. What better place to court Italians?
Griselda: Listen. I have put a pellet of poison in one of the vessels.
Hawkins: Which one?
Griselda: The one with the figure of a pestle.
Hawkins: The vessel with the pestle?
Griselda: Yes. But you don't want the vessel with the pestle, you want the chalice from the palace!
Hawkins: I don't want the vessel with the pestle, I want the chalice from... the what?
Jean: The chalice from the palace!
Griselda: It's a little crystal chalice with a figure of a palace.
Hawkins: The chalice from the palace has the pellet with the poison?
Griselda: No, the pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle.
Hawkins: Oh, oh, the pestle with the vessel.
Jean: The vessel with the pestle.
Hawkins: What about the palace from the chalice?
Griselda: Not the palace from the chalice! The chalice from the palace!
Hawkins: Where's the pellet with the poison?
Griselda: In the vessel with the pestle.
Griselda: The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true.
Jean: Don't you see? The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle.
Griselda: The chalice from the palace has the brew that is true!
Jean: It's so easy, I can say it.
Hawkins: Well then you fight him!
Griselda: Listen carefully. The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle, the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true.
Hawkins: The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle, the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true.
Jean: Good man!
Fergus: I'm Fergus, the Ostler.
Hawkins: Who-whogus the Whatsler?
Fergus: Fergus, the Ostler. It is I, not Ravenhurst, who is your friend.
Hawkins: [ushering Fergus back to the window] Look, my good man, you pick your friends, and I shall pick mine. At the moment, I have a very important mission with the king. After all, I am the incomparable Giacomo, king of jesters and jester of kings.
[Griselda enters unnoticed]
Hawkins: I have entertained in all the courts of Europe and speak a ready wit in their every tongue.
[turns and runs into Griselda]
Hawkins: [without missing a beat] Now, who are you?
Griselda: I am Griselda.
Hawkins: I was battered and bruised, but the king was amused / and before the siesta, he made me his jester / and I found out soon, that to be a buffoon / was a serious thing as a rule! / For a jester's chief employment, is to kill himself for your enjoyment / and a jester unemployed is nobody's fool!
Hawkins: I started to travel to try to unravel / my mind and to find a new chance / When I got to Spain it was suddenly plain / that the field that appealed was the dance. / The Spanish were clannish, but I wouldn't vanish / and learned every step they had planned. / The first step of all wasn't hard to recall / Cause the first step of all is to stand. And stand. And stand. And stand...
Griselda: [Correcting Hawkins' recitation of the directions about the drinks] No! The pellet with the poison's in the vessel with the pestle...
Jean: ...the chalice from the palace has the brew that is true. Even I can say it!
Hawkins: Then YOU fight him!
King Roderick I: What are you loo-loo-looing about?
Hubert Hawkins: Oh, I'm not loo-loo-looing, Sire, I'm willow-willow-wailing.
King Roderick I: All right, all right. Willow away, willow away.
Hawkins: After months of pleading for just this kind of action, what makes you think that anybody, anybody could make me reveal the identity of my confederate?
Jean: Because they'd put you on the rack, crack your every bone, scald you with hot oil, and remove the nails off your fingers with flaming hot pincers.
Hawkins: I'd... like to withdraw the question.
Princess Gwendolyn: [to Griselda] Remember, if he dies, you die!
Griselda: I bring you a message from the princess.
Hubert Hawkins: The royal princess?
Griselda: Yes, she finds you most attractive and would like to meet you.
Hubert Hawkins: Me?
Griselda: She finds you passing fair, passing gracefully.
Hubert Hawkins: Tell her, "Thank you very much, but I'm just passing through."
Ravenhurst: I bid you welcome. I am Ravenhurst.
Hawkins: [laughing] Ravenhurst!
Hawkins: R-R-Ravenhurst? Uh, the 'real' Ravenhurst?
Hawkins: Uh, I mean, does the king know? D-does the king know about your being the real Ravenhurst?
Ravenhurst: Keep your jests for the king.
King: Would you grant the king a little kiss?
Jean: Oh, certainly, sire, and don't worry. They say it isn't catching.
King: Oh, you are a little... catching?
Jean: Just because it runs in the family doesn't mean that everyone has it. Kiss me, sire!
King: Has it? Has what?
Jean: Don't I please you, sire?
King: Oh, yes, yes, but, eh, these brothers and cousins and uncles...
Jean: And aunts. But let us not talk about their swollen, twisted, pain ridden bodies. Hold me, take me in your arms, tell me I am yours!
King: But this, this uh writhing on the floor...
Jean: In agony.
King: How - how does one catch this thing?
Jean: Oh, the touch of a hand, the brush of a lip, but let us not spoil this moment!
King: What is this dreadful thing called?
Jean: Breckenridge's Scourge.
King: Who's Breckenridge.
Jean: My father!
King Roderick: Rules of Chivalry be hanged! Ravenhurst, take that nincompoop, and knight that nincompoop by noon tomorrow!
[picking his weapon for the joust against Griswold]
Hubert Hawkins: I'll take one of those, one of those, ooh, a couple of those.
[he pauses and glances over at Griswold]
Hubert Hawkins: I'd better take them all.
Princess Gwendolyn: If my father hears of this our necks will snap like twigs!
[she snaps her fingers, causing Griselda's spell to break and Hawkins to start panicking]
Hawkins: Uh, like what?
Princess Gwendolyn: Twigs!
[she snaps again, putting the spell back in place and Hawkins to stop panicking]
Hawkins: Twigs? Speak not of twigs when you look at an oak! Until tonight, my little sapling.
Jean: [preparing Hawkins for his castle infiltration] You are the incomparable Giacomo, king of jesters and jester to the king.
Hawkins: Jester to the king.
Hawkins: Jester to the king.
Hawkins: To the king?
Black Fox: Only the sharpest eye, the keenest nose / the quickest ear and the fleetest toes / Can ever outfox the Fox! Can ever outfox the Fox! / Only the stoutest arm, the bravest heart / with a magic charm and a good head start / Will ever outfox the Fox! Will ever outfox the Fox!
Hawkins: What manner of man is Giacomo? Ha ha! I shall tell you what manner of man is he. He lives for a sigh, he dies for a kiss, he lusts for the laugh, ha! He never walks when he can leap! He never flees when he can fight (thud) oop! He swoons at the beauty of a rose. And I offer myself to you, all of me. My heart. My lips. My legs. My calves. Do what you will - my love endures. Beat me. Kick me. (kiss, kiss) I am yours.
Captain of the Guard: [Hawkins is being tested for Knighthood] He must scale a wall in full armor.
[Hawkins is tossed over the wall]
Captain of the Guard: Candidate passes!
Captain of the Guard: He must bring down a hawk in full flight.
[a hawk with an arrow is tossed on the ground]
Captain of the Guard: Candidate passes.
Hawkins: But I didn't even shoo...
Captain of the Guard: [shouts] Candidate passes!
Captain of the Guard: He must capture a wild boar with his bare hands.
[a piglet comes out of a chute followed by sound effects of splashing in the mud]
Captain of the Guard: He passes!
Hawkins: He's right. Rules of chivalry, you know.
King Roderick I: Rules of chivalry be hanged! And so will you!
Hawkins: [referring to Gwendolyn] She'll jump.
Princess Gwendolyn: I've seen this monster and it's not for nothing he's called the grim, grisly, and gruesome Griswold.
King Roderick: Grim, grisly, or gruesome, you marry Griswold.
King Roderick I: Gwendolyn dear, do stop plucking that thing.
[Hawkins sings a lullaby to the baby]
Hawkins: Loo, loo, loo, I'll take you dreaming through the rainy night / To a place behind the raindrops where the stars are bright / You may not find gold or silver, but a richer prize / Waits for you behind the raindrops if you close your eyes / Tonight, tonight, when all the world's asleep / We will tiptoe home with a wondrous star, a star you can always keep / And years from now when you go dreaming, when you're very old / Though your crown be rich with rubies, diamonds set in gold / None will shine as bright as the star we'll find, tonight...
King Roderick: Take the witch out and burn her!
Princess Gwendolyn: Harm one hair on her head and I throw myself from the highest turret!
King Roderick: Gwendolyn, you go too far.