Phantom of the Paradise
Swan. He has no other name.
His past is a mystery, but his work is already a legend.
He wrote and produced his first gold record at 14.
Since then, he's won so many...
...that he tried to deposit them in Fort Knox.
He brought the blues to Britain. He brought Liverpool to America.
He brought folk and rock together. His band, the Juicy Fruits...
...single-handedly gave birth to the nostalgia wave in the '70s.
Now he's looking for the new sound of the spheres...
...to inaugurate his own Xanadu, his own Disneyland...
...the Paradise, the ultimate rock palace.
This film is the story of that search, of that sound...
...of the man who made it, the girl who sang it...
...and the monster who stole it.
It seems like yesterday I found Annette in that church choir.
I got her singing lessons, taught her how to dress, got her first gig.
I paid off a columnist. He did a beautiful story on her.
I told her who to be nice to, who to...
I fed her drugs to get through the tours, made her record a hit.
Then you made her the biggest thing in rock.
So now what does she do? She fires us, cancels Vegas...
...and gives free concerts for gook orphans.
She was more than a piece. She was the light of my life.
And now she's gone.
There'll be a 20-minute intermission before the next show.
We sued her. We couldn't lose. We had an ironclad contract.
It was a lock, it was over, it was closed. I even bribed the judge.
He said we couldn't sign anyone to a life contract.
Called us a disgrace to the profession. A disgrace.
I made her the moneygrubbing whore she was, and I'm a disgrace?
-What do you want me to do? -Break her.
-ls that all? -lsn't that enough?
Annette is nothing, finished, washed up.
-She's at the top of the charts. -That's today, Philbin.
Tomorrow she'll be forgotten. We have more important business.
-The Paradise. -I know. We've looked everywhere...
That's it. The music to open the Paradise.
-I've finally found it. -That creep to open the Paradise?
No, not him. The music. Listen to the music.
What do I do with him?
You'll think of something.
-Mr. Leach? -Hello.
My name's Arnold Philbin.
I scout talent for Swan. He's interested in your stuff.
-The Swan? -That's right.
-He said your song could be big. -Really?
I was right there.
If he produced my music, the world would listen.
The game plan exactly, but you need a lot of work, polishing.
I know. I have a long way to go.
-Do you have any tapes of your stuff? -No, but it's all written down here.
-Give us two or three good up numbers. -Two or three?
This cantata is 200 or 300 pages, and I haven't finished yet.
Forget the sonata. We just want the songs.
-lt's not just songs. It's much more. -I don't get you.
It's a whole series of songs that tell a story of Faust.
-Who? What label's he on? -He was a legendary German magician.
He sold his soul to the devil for worldly power.
What is this, kid? School time?
A song is a song. You either dig it, or you don't.
Now, I like your stuff, kid. It's terrific. And you know what?
I think the Juicy Fruits will dig it.
I'm not promising anything. First...
I won't let my music be mutilated by those greaseballs!
-Only I can sing Faust! -lt was just an idea.
Swan makes all these decisions, you know?
I'm sorry. It's just that I worked so hard on this thing.
-lt's okay. You sure got a temper. -I'm sorry.
-I don't know what comes over me. -Just relax. Take it easy.
Give me the music. Swan will take a look and get right back to you.
But if you ask me, I think we're gonna produce your first album.
-Hello. I'm Winslow Leach. -Yes?
Mr. Philbin said Mr. Swan would call about producing my record.
He said he'd get back to me. That was a month ago.
One moment, please.
Taxi! Taxi! Taxi!
Follow that car.
-Where did you get that song? -From Philbin, to audition with.
-Sing it again. -Why?
Go ahead. Sing it.
That's incredible. How'd you know it went like that?
-I wrote the song. -Then why aren't you with Swan?
-There must be some mix-up. -Oh, sure.
Your name's not on the music.
Swan heard me sing this. Why's he auditioning girls for my cantata?
-I only sing it solo. -Haven't you heard?
-He's opening the Paradise with it. -You're kidding.
-I look like a kidder? -He's using my cantata?
-lsn't that great? -I wish he'd told me.
He's just auditioning girls for a backup chorus.
You're a fine singer. You shouldn't be in a chorus.
I don't care where I sing this music.
Hey, look. Could you help me?
I can sing these songs better than anybody.
With your help, I can get in the chorus.
-I'd love to help you. -You're not just being nice?
Personal desire never influences my aesthetic judgment.
-What's that mean? -lt means I think you're terrific.
Everybody get in line, gotta quick it up a bit. Move in quietly.
One, two, three, four...
Come on, come on. Five, six, seven, eight.
Wait a minute. Stop. What's that, a boyfriend?
-I'm the composer. -Great.
-Swan's only seeing girls. -I must see...
If you wanna see Swan, call and make an appointment.
-I got thrown out. -They don't wanna see you.
-But I wrote the music. -Just get out of here!
-Winslow, I'll tell him you're here. -I'll wait for you. Good luck.
Why won't he just let me sing? It was awful.
-What's the matter? -Philbin tried to... I can't do it.
-I came here to sing. Leave me alone. -Did you tell him who I am?
-What's your name? -Hey! Come here, buddy.
-Where's a good department store? -We'll take you.
-When do we get to sing? -Not much singing happens here.
I've been here 12 times, and I still haven't sung.
-What do you do here? -You'll see.
-Can't you sing on your back? -I've never tried.
If you can sing standing up, you can sing lying down.
-Take your slip off. -No, I'm saving it for Swan.
-Do it now. -You're being auditioned right now.
-What? -The whole place is bugged.
-You're kidding. -No, Swan's watching us right now.
-Come here. -What are you doing?
-He likes to watch us. -Watch us doing what?
-Doing each other. -Really?
-lt turns him on. -Does he like blonds?
I like blonds.
Do you mind? I hate to bother you, but...
That's right, l... Just hold me close. I just...
I need someone to help me warm my voice up.
Mr. Swan, you remember me. I'm Winslow Leach.
May we rehearse?
Over here, Swan.
-Get this fag out of here. -lt's me. Winslow. Don't you remember?
I gave Mr. Philbin a copy of my cantata,Faust.
You were gonna look at it. You're auditioning girls for my work.
I'm Winslow Leach! I wrote it! Where are you taking me?
-What are you doing? -Nothing.
-Are you some kind of pervert? -No, sir. I'm...
-I'm Winslow Leach, the composer. -What are you doing outside Swanage?
Listen, officers, you gotta help me. Mr. Swan's got my music.
He pretends he doesn't know me. He had me thrown out and beaten up.
-He didn't want to buy what you had. -He said nothing about buying.
Jack, what's that he got in his purse?
I don't know, Joe. Take a look.
-I think I will. -Mr. Swan said he had it on him.
What do you know?
-You know the penalty for pushing? -Life!
But I'm innocent! Swan stole my music and framed me!
Welcome to Sing Sing.
We're very fortunate to be included in the Dental Health Research Program.
This is a volunteer program funded by the Swan Foundation.
You are all volunteers.
All your teeth will be pulled.
Teeth are a source of infection. It pays to be on the safe side.
Pardon me. I'm not a volunteer.
I'm innocent. I don't want you to take my teeth out.
How many men here are innocent? Raise your hands.
Good morning, everyone.
Swan can deposit another golden disk in Fort Knox.
The Juicy Fruits on the Death Label has taken the charts by storm.
Friday night, you can see them at the grand opening of the Paradise.
Swan's rock palace...
...is scheduled to open at last with this dynamite sound.
So let's hear it again. The Juicy Fruits singing Swan's Faust.
Get away from the record press.
-Let's move this ladder now. -What's that?
I shove the tire in his mouth.
Then he really gets mad at me, you know?
This is the last time we go through it. See Swan?
He's listening and watching, so don't make me look bad again.
All right, let's get going here, will you, please?
Let's get it going over here. Get the car over there.
All right, girls. Just a second, Linda.
You got a very nice body. We want to see some skin.
-lt's cold. It's just a rehearsal. -You're not paid to be cold.
-Don't touch me. -You wanna get paid?
-Yeah, I wanna get paid. -Get back on the car.
Come on, let's move it out of here.
We've gotta get some thin girls here.
-Where are you going? -I gotta get out of here.
-What sign are you? -Leo.
You're okay. I gotta get out of here.
-Come on, I wanna show you something. -I swear to God.
Do you see Swan up there? He doesn't show it, but he's thinking:
"Why isn't Harold in the car?"
Do you really want me to tell him that it's not in the stars for you?
I don't feel good.
You'll feel worse if you don't do what I say.
-I hear this ticking. -Maybe something's loose up there.
-There's something weird here. -Take one of these.
-I can't take pills... -Take the pills, swallow. Feel better?
-Yeah, I feel better. -No more ticking?
Get out there. All right. Come on, get this car out.
Girls, I want big smiles now. Look at the audience. That's it.
Big smiles. Sing the song.
Winslow, good to see you. I've been looking for you everywhere.
Killing me won't help you.
My God, you're horrible. Don't rush off.
Look at yourself.
Look at yourself!
What's that horrible sound? Can't you talk?
Look around you, Winslow.
You've destroyed your face, your voice.
Now you're trying to destroy the Paradise. Haven't we had enough?
I can give you the power to create. I'll make you somebody.
We'll have to start over, only this time working together.
The time for your sound is now. People will want to hear your music.
Tomorrow, I'll put a whole new group together who'll do your songs.
Come to the auditions. You'll see for yourself. Trust me!
-What's your name, sweetheart? -Phoenix.
-Let's see what you got. -Do I get to sing this time?
-You mean you're really a singer? -Yes, I'm a singer.
Try to forget it. We're not looking for singers. We're looking for screamers.
I'm not a screamer. I'm a singer.
-I want you to answer a question. -Yes?
What would you give me to sing?
Anything you wanted.
Would you give me your voice?
Then let's talk.
-How's that? Try it. -Phoenix.
Try it again.
At least you can talk. Plug yourself into the console to sing.
-You really think she's that good? -Too good for you.
I'll hire her anyway.
She could be my voice now.
Could she? Really?
Stop terrorizing the Paradise and rewrite your cantata...
...for Phoenix. We'll both win.
You get your cantata sung by the right singer, I open Paradise.
We can't waste time. Lock yourself up in here and write.
-I could write for her. -lt'll be performed here live.
-Phoenix will star. -My cantata. For her.
I'll get fantastic musicians. The hall has...
I don't trust you. You ruined my music before.
Forget about the Juicy Fruits. Who wants nostalgia anymore?
-I don't trust you. -No need. Here's a contract.
Everything I've said and more is in it.
-I'll read it. -At your leisure.
"The party of the first part gives the party of the second part...
...full power to do with him at their pleasure, to rule, send, fetch...
...or carry him or his, be it either body, soul, flesh or blood."
-What does that mean? -That's a transportation clause.
...which are excluded shall be deemed included."
-What does that mean? -That's a clause to protect you.
Anyway, what difference does it make? What choice do you have?
I'll rewrite my cantata, but you'd best play what I write.
Ink isn't worth anything to me, Winslow.
And now we're in business together.
I'll rewrite my cantata, but you'd best play what I write.
Ink isn't worth anything to me, Winslow.
And now we're in business together.
Tasty, Winslow, tasty.
-But I thought you liked her, boss. -I do. She's perfect.
But you know how I abhor perfection in anyone but myself.
Then Phoenix is out?
No, not out. Just a backup singer.
My cantata needs something really heavy.
Pretty, but no.
There's something here like...
-How come we don't get to take photos? -They have exclusive rights to him.
-Where's he coming in from? -Transylvania. Swan will go anywhere...
Remember, no pictures of Swan.
Gentlemen, I want to tell you of our latest work. An opera.
A kind of pop cantata.
It was written by the late Winslow Leach.
It is about a young man who sells his soul to the devil...
...to become a pop star. It'll be the first rock version of Faust.
We'll be recording at the Paradise, Friday night.
Live on the Death Label.
-Mr. Pizer. -Who's singing this? The Juicy Fruits?
No. They're a reflection of the past.
Gentlemen, I give you the future:
Winslow. Good morning.
-What day is it? -Thursday. Today is Thursday.
A little pick-me-up.
How's it coming? Don't mean to rush you.
Don't worry. It'll be finished.
-I can't wait to hear her sing. -Doing beautifully.
Can't wait to meet you, by the way. Tomorrow's the big night.
You better get a castrato. This is a little out of my range.
-Something bothering you, Beef? -This was scored for a chick.
-I'm not doing it in drag. -You sing it better than any bitch.
You don't know how right you are, Goliath.
Okay, boys, from the bridge. Hit it.
-Who says I can't sing it? -I like it. Keep working on it.
Drop an octave here, change a line there.
Make it completely yours. Let's go.
Doesn't that change the whole thing?
You heard him. Make it yours. If it's good, who cares what it's about?
Is that so?
-Nobody cares what it's about. -ls that right?
-Who listens to lyrics anyway? -Dry up, tubbo.
Seal it now.
This creep gets no comps.
My music! Swan!
-What was that? -What was what?
I knew I shouldn't screw around with a dead man's music. This place...
-What are you talking about? -Didn't you hear that shriek?
That was something trying to get out of its premature grave.
Opening night prima donnas. Look, iron man...
-...you're uptight. Take a shower. -My pleasure...
Never sing my music again. Not here, not anywhere. Do you understand?
Only Phoenix can sing my music.
Anyone else that tries, dies.
Let's see your tickets. Everybody's got to have a ticket.
-Everybody have a ticket. You got one? -Sure.
Get back in line.
Take care of the rest of the line. Open the gate.
Where do you think you're going, Tinkerbell?
-Cincinnati, to see my mother. -You're gonna miss the show.
-There ain't gonna be no show. -What?
Listen, Philbin. There really is a phantom.
He was just in my shower.
He threatened my life. He said his music is just for Phoenix.
Only she can sing it.
Anyone else who tries, dies.
What the hell are you talking about?
Look, Philbin, I am a professional.
I have been in this business a long time.
I don't want to do the show. Not because I got stage fright...
...but because some creature from beyond doesn't want me to.
-Bullshit! What really happened? -Can't you feel the vibes?
Bad, sport, real bad.
The karma's so thick, you need an Aqua Lung to breathe.
-I know what it is. -Why don't you tell me?
-Speed, that's what it is. -What do you know about it?
You just pass it out, I take it. I know drug-real from real-real.
-Do me a favor and take this. -No, that'll bring me down.
You better come down. You better get yourself together.
You got a show to do. It's opening night. Can you still sing?
Sure, I can still sing. The Phantom! Help!
Somebody get a fire extinguisher!
We want Beef! We want Beef! We want Beef!
Somebody get rid of him.
-Get out there and sing. -You're crazy.
Someone killed Beef so you could sing. If you don't, there'll be more bodies.
-ls Beef...? -Dead.
But let's not talk about that. Let's talk about you.
I like your name. We won't have to change it.
You're going to be a very big star.
We'll finish the cantata tomorrow night...
...we'll record, we'll go on tour and then...
There are no words to express what you're going to become.
I'll do anything you want.
I owe you everything.
-Just give me that crowd again. -Tomorrow night.
-Tomorrow night, they'll be yours. -Mine.
And all I want...
...is your voice.
Is that all?
We'll go to Swanage and celebrate.
I'll wait for you in the car.
He wouldn't listen to me.
-Where is she? -Have you ever seen such a crowd?
-I never want to see another one. -They've been entertained.
They never want the show to stop.
The Paradise is more magnificent than I dreamed.
-How often is a star fried on-stage? -lt's an attraction.
-Don't hurt me. -I would never hurt you, Phoenix.
You know me?
I'm Winslow. Remember?
-But Winslow is dead. -No, not quite.
Who are you? Why do you wear that mask?
Because Swan has taken my voice, my music...
...and given me this. And now he wants you. But you're all I have left.
No one will sing in this Paradise again, no one will sing my Faust.
No one but you. Leave this place, or I'll destroy you too.
Why should I go with you? Don't you hear them? Why should I give that up?
They want much more now. More than you could ever give.
-I'll give them whatever they want. -No!
Get your hands off me!
With that freak, the Paradise is done.
It's beginning. Tomorrow, Phoenix will finish Faust.
There she is.
-Beef's killer is on the roof. -Get the police.
Don't think about it. Tonight is your night. I won't have it ruined.
What a foolish thing to do. Didn't you read your contract closely?
See where it says "terms of agreement"?
"This contract terminates with Swan." No more suicides.
You gave up your right to rest in peace when you signed the contract.
But if you do find a loophole, forget it.
That stays sealed as long as I have the power to bind you.
If I'm destroyed, that gaping wound opens.
You might say we terminate together. Now get back to work.
We need new love songs for Phoenix. If you as much as say boo to anyone...
...you'll never see Phoenix again.
Oh, yes, about the love songs.
-Perhaps a duet? -Never.
I'm under contract too.
Do we get to shoot pictures of you tonight?
Is it true you'll wear a mask on-stage?
How can we shoot you if you have a mask?
You can't, fools.
It was genius, making the end of the opera a wedding.
Faust, instead of burning in hell, he gets the girl?
And you will be the priest.
I've never been a priest before. That's terrific.
Swan, you remember me, don't you? You do, don't you?
-Do you know him? -We went steady in high school.
-You're old enough to be his mother. -This was taken 20 years ago.
My God! He doesn't look any different.
...November 19, 1953.
Today, I have decided to kill myself.
In being the greatest showman of my time...
...I'm recording live for the Swan Archives.
I'm getting old.
I can't bear...
...to see this beautiful face ravaged by the forces of time.
If I can't be young forever...
...I'd rather end it all. Now.
-Why not? -What?
Stay young forever.
I'm real. And I'll leave if you want. But you did call me.
I didn't call anybody.
You said you wanted to be young forever.
Well, here I am.
But I am stoned.
You're not real.
Then it really doesn't matter what happens, does it?
-What is going to happen? -For openers, you'll look like me.
This is too much. I guess you're supposed to be the devil?
-I go by many names. -And you will make me young forever?
This image will age in your place.
This picture gets old instead of me?
Yes. And you must watch it every day, just to see how lucky you are.
-I'm crazy about pictures of myself. -The tape from which it comes...
-...must be guarded at all costs. -Why?
When it goes, you go.
-What do I have to do? -It's all here. Read it carefully.
Then sign at the bottom in blood.
-Blood? My blood? -Messy, I know.
But it's the only way I can bind you. Tradition.
What do you have to lose?
I was gonna use this on my wrist.
Your soul is damned either way.
Don't waste it.
Ink isn't worth anything to me, Winslow.
Just sign this, and it will all be legal.
"Till death do us part"?
Mustn't be late for your own funer... Wedding.
Aren't we rushing things a little?
-Blood! -Stop wasting it! Sign your name.
She must be hit when Philbin says: "Till death do you part. "
This may not be my business, but why kill her here, tonight?
An assassination live on TV, coast-to-coast? That's entertainment.
When it goes, you go.
Do you, Phoenix, take Swan for your wedded husband?
From this day forward, for better, for worse?
-ln sickness and in health? -I do.
Do you, Swan, take Phoenix for your wedded wife?
From this day forward, for better, for worse. In sickness and in health...
Oh, my God! What's happened to your face?
I don't understand.
Your voice, remember? You promised me your voice.
Our contract, remember?
Ripped by thewildbunch22
P S 2004
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