Monday, April 23, 2007

This is As Good as it Gets!

One of my most favorite movie scripts is from "As Good as It Gets". I think I've blogged about it somewhere before and even used some quotes in one of my talks. Usually I get Melvin's lines when he talks to Carol, because the two greatest compliments I've heard in my life came from that obsessive-compulsive man.

Today I'm recalling that scene where Carol the waitress learns that his son won't suffer from asthma anymore, and she tries to write Melvin a long "thank-you" note for helping her out. Her mom is frustrated because she refuses to accept the fact that she's finally free to enjoy her life, that she should stop worrying. The last line from Carol and her mom's reply are classic about how I relate to God: me, always tearful, asking Him what He wants from me, and Him with loving eyes looking at His daughter and saying, I want you to have some rest.

Well, just picture the scene, or get a copy of that film and locate it! I'd like to thank the Internet Movie Script Database (IMSDb) for originally posting the script.


by Mard Andrus And James L. Brooks

Story by Mark Andrus

You're not still writing that
thank-you note?

I'm on the last page. How do you
spell conscience?

C-o-n-s-c-i-e-n-c-e. I got Sean
from the bakery to baby-sit so
let's go out.

I still don't feel safe leaving
Spencer with someone. How do you
spell it again?

Spencer is okay. You'd better
start finding something else to do
with your free time. If you can't
feel good about this break and
step out a little...
(struts and pumps
her arms)
You ought to get Mr. Udall to send
you over a psychiatrist.

(more emotionally
than she intended)
I don't need one 'cause I know
what's really going on here. I
have to finish this letter or
I'll go nuts.
(looking at paper;
This can't be right -- con-

Carol breathes heavily -- gets control, stopping herself
on the brink of crying.

Carol. What?

I don't know... It's very strange
not feeling that stupid panic
thing inside you all the time.
Without that you just start
thinking about yourself -- and
what does that ever get anybody.
Today, on the bus there was this
adorable couple and I felt myself
giving them a dirty look -- I had
no idea everything was...

Go ahead.

(great, forceful
hand gestures)
... moving in the wrong
direction... Away from when I
even remembered what it was like
to have a man to... anything...
hold *** -- sorry -- hands
with, *****. I was
feeling like really bad that Dr.
Bettes is married.
(this next one's
Which is probably why I make poor
Spencer hug me more than he wants
to... Like the poor kid doesn't
have enough problems. ****
(weeps at her
Oh, boy. Who needs these

Spencer's doing fine. So what are
you saying, that you're frustr...

Leave me be! Why are you doing
this? Why are you picking at my
sores... What is it that you
want?... You want what? What's
with you? I hope getting me
thinking of everything that's
wrong when all I want is to not
do this has some purpose.
(puffy; red;
What is it, Mom? No kidding.

Slumped, fought out -- Carol gets out one last, naked
husky voiced question.

What is it you want? What?

I want us to go out.

A beat, then.


(***** Asterisks Ella's.)

Ok, then. Enough drama. Let's go out!

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