The Un-underground Movie
Written by Albert E. Lewin
Greg makes a movie about the Pilgrims for a history project and uses the family as cast members. Hope you enjoy the review.
CAST OF CHARACTERS
(The episode begins with Mike and Carol out in the backyard, taking pictures of Bobby and Cindy on the swings. Greg comes riding home on his bicycle.)
Mike (to Bobby and Cindy): Now higher, higher.
Carol: Mike, I think that’s high enough.
Mike: I got a close-up honey, smile.
Greg: Hi, everybody.
Carol: Hi, Greg. How’s it going?
(Carol, Mike, Bobby and Cindy come up to him.)
Greg: Hey, Mom, we got a history teacher like you wouldn’t believe.
Mike: Is that bad or good?
Greg: She wants us to be creative. We’re supposed to study the early colonies, and then think of some interesting way to tell about it.
Carol: A kind of report?
Greg: Yeah, sort of. One kid’s gonna write a play about Salem, and another’s gonna build a model of Plymouth settlement, and another’s gonna paint a picture.
Carol: Say, that is groovy. She sounds like a good teacher.
Greg: She is, Mom.
Mike: What are you gonna do, Greg?
Greg: I don’t know yet. (Pause) Say, your camera. Suppose I could use your camera?
Mike: For your report? Well, if you be careful with it.
Greg (taking the camera): Yeah, I’ll make a movie about the Pilgrims. Now, that’ll be really different.
Carol: A movie! Say Mike, that’s a great idea.
Greg: I bet I’d get an A for it.
Bobby: An A movie? Does that mean kids can say it without their parents?
(The scene fades out.)
(The next scene has Mike and Carol in their room discussing Greg’s project. Carol is in bed reading an encyclopedia.)
Carol: Did you know that Plymouth wasn’t actually the first stop the Mayflower made in the New World?
Mike: Yeah, they stopped at the tip of Cape Cod for fresh water. (He gets into bed.) Greg told me too. (He kisses her.) Good night, honey.
Mike (falling asleep): Mmm hmm.
Carol: You know, Greg is devouring history. I think it’s wonderful.
Mike (half asleep): Hmm.
(Carol turns out the light.)
Carol: Well, I wish there were more.
Carol: Teachers like that.
Mike: Mmm, hmm.
Carol: Writing plays, painting, making movies. Kids are bound to learn more.
Carol: Good night, dear.
(She falls asleep when suddenly she and Mike hear the sound of a typewriter. Carol turns the light back on and awakens Mike.)
Mike (waking up): Honey, now what?
Carol: I hear something.
(Mike hears the sound as well.)
Mike: Sounds like a typewriter.
Carol: At this hour?
(They go downstairs to see what’s going on. Greg is at the typewriter.)
Mike: What are you doing up?
Greg: I’m working on the screenplay for my movie.
Mike: What, now?
Greg: Well, I’m too excited to sleep. Besides, my mind works best at this time of night.
Mike (sarcastically): Oh good, when you get a little older, I’ll send you to night school. (He gives him a slight push.) Hit the sack, huh?
Greg: Okay, I’m stuck here anyway.
(He gets up to go upstairs.)
Mike: Hey, wait a minute.
(Mike sits down and Carol comes in.)
Mike: I got an idea for that. (He starts typing more and Alice comes by.) How’s that?
Carol: What’s going on here?
Mike: Greg’s writing his screenplay.
Carol: Greg is?
Mike: What do you think of that?
Carol: Well, oh no, no no. Oh, no, no. No, I think the Indian chief should definitely say “I come in peace.”.
Mike: Aw, that’s not the way they talk in the movies. You got to have a lot of “ughs” and “hows”.
Carol: Oh, that’s corny dear.
Alice (from the kitchen): Hey, how about this, A bush, noiselessly, it parts. (She shuts the shutter.) And the painted face of the red man peers steal thily through the leaves. (She comes in.) Indians are always doing that in movies.
Carol: Yeah Alice, that isn’t bad.
Mike: Hey, hey. That’s a great way to start the whole thing.
Greg: Dad, I…
Mike: Excuse me, would you, Greg. I’ll just type it right in here.
Greg: Dad! (Mike continues to type.) Well, if nobody minds, I think I’ll go to bed.
Carol: Hey Mike, will you put that in about I come in peace.
Mike: Samoset says…
Carol: that’s my line, Alice.
Mike: I come in peace, I come in peace.
(The next scene has the kids in the backyard putting the props up for the movie. he sees Jan and Cindy painting a board.)
Greg (to Jan): You got to keep the lines straight.
Cindy: Is mine good?
Greg: Looks fine, but make it look real.
Alice (coming outside): Wow, you sure are a bunch of busy little beavers. (She notices something.) Hey, what’s this?
Peter: That’s a stock, we put criminals in it.
Bobby: They get nothing but bread and water.
Alice: And splinters.
Greg: I borrowed it form school, along with some other props.
(Carol comes out.)
Carol: Say, this looks like the real thing.
Bobby: Is it how it was in the olden times?
Bobby: Like when you were a little girl?
(Carol gives an astonished look.)
Alice: Bobby, your mother wasn’t born then.
Bobby: Well, Alice.
Alice: Neither was I.
(That evening, the family meets at the dinner table.)
Carol: Jan, did you wash your hands?
Jan: Yeah, see?
Mike: Say what’s taking Bobby so long?
Peter: I don’t know, I didn’t see him.
Mike: Well, go call your brother.
Peter (yelling): BOBBY!
Mike: I said go call him, not scream for him. I could’ve done that.
(They hear Bobby scream from outside.)
Carol: Hey, that’s Bobby.
(Bobby continues to scream while the family runs outside for him. Bobby put his head in the stocks and got stuck.)
Bobby: Get me out of here!
(The family goes to help him get out.)
Carol: Just a minute, honey, we’ll get you out.
(Mike and the boys get him out.)
Mike: How did you get stuck in there?
Bobby: I don’t know, if I knew, I wouldn’t have.
(Next, Carol is dressing Cindy in a pink dress, which Greg objects to.)
Carol: Hold still, sweetheart.
Cindy: I’m holding, Mom.
Greg: Mom, I tell you, that’s the wrong costume.
(Carol talks with the pin still in her mouth.)
Carol: Well dear, why don’t you let me finish it before you reject it.
Greg: They didn’t wear stuff like that in Pilgrim days. Only black and white.
Carol: Oh, but it’ s a shame to dress the girls in black and white when you’re using color film.
Mike (coming in): Hi everyone.
Carol: Hi dear. (He reaches down to kiss her) Careful of the pins!
Mike; Well, I don’t want to get stuck. (He notices the dress on Cindy) Hey, that’s one of the Pilgrim costumes, it’s very nice.
Greg: It’s nice, but not for a Pilgrim. They only wore black and white.
Carol: that must have been the origin of basic black.
Greg: Yeah, and let’s leave it that way.
Mike: Yeah, well, I think you can stretch a point in a movie. I, for one, don’t believe all the things Charlton Heston does.
(Greg goes into the girls room to give them their parts. Jan and Cindy are putting a jigsaw puzzle together. Greg knocks.)
Cindy: We’re busy.
Greg (coming in): Well, I just wanted to give you your parts in the movie.
Jan: Oh, I wanna be Priscilla.
Marcia: Sorry Jan, I’m going to be Priscilla.
Jan: I said it first. I’m Priscilla.
Cindy: I want to be a Priscilla too.
Greg: Now wait a minute, I’m the director and… (the girls argue) knock it off, everyone! Now the part of Priscilla…
Marcia: Greg, you might as well know, if I’m not Priscilla, I’m not going to be in your dumb old movie!
Jan: Me either!
Cindy: Me either, either!
Greg: Oh, come on!
Marcia: Well, am I in or am I out?
(Greg stares angrily at Marcia and Jan)
Cindy: Well, look at me too!
Greg: Oh, boy!
(He leaves and the girls continue their argument. Outside in the backyard, Peter and Bobby are playing Indians.
Greg: Hey you guys, would you come here for a minute.
(Peter pretends to slay Bobby.)
Peter: Yeah, I guess so.
Greg: Good, I want to give you your parts in the movie.
Peter: Good, I want to be an Indian.
Bobby: Me too.
Greg (to Peter): You’re going to be John Alden and you’re (Bobby) going to be Myles Standish.
Bobby: Was he an Indian?
Greg: He was a Pilgrim.
Bobby: I wanna be an Indian!
Greg: Listen to me, I’m the director and I say you’re both going to be Pilgrims.
Peter and Bobby: Indians!
(They continue to chase each other while a frustrated Greg broods. Mike and Carol are in the kitchen putting groceries away when Greg walks in.)
Carol: I can’t wait to tell Greg’s history teacher what a wonderful idea her assignment was.
Alice: I don’t know how she’d react to that Mrs. Brady.
Mike: Right, teachers are used to getting nothing but knocks these days.
Carol (seeing Greg come in): Here comes Mr. Demille now.
Mike: Hey Greg, listen. I got a great idea for that hard winter part.
Carol: Yeah, me too.
Alice: Hey, look, I wrote mine down.
Mike: Is something bothering you son?
Greg: I’ll tell you what’s bothering me, it’s Priscilla and the Indians. All the girls want to be Priscilla and all the boys want to be Indians.
Mike: Well you’re the director, who do you want to be Priscilla/
Greg: Jan, but Marcia won’t be in the movie if she’s not Priscilla.
Alice: Do you think she’s ready for such a romantic role?
Carol: Well, I think Marcia.
Alice: I was thinking about myself.
Alice: Sure, speak for yourself, Alice. After all, I played the part at Pilgrim Festival at P.S. 34 in ’43, or was that P.S. 43 in ’34.
Mike: Listen, why don’t you solve the problem, let your mother play Priscilla.
Greg: With Bobby as Myles Standish?
Carol: Well, your father was only trying to help, Greg.
Greg: Well, I don’t want any more help. I’m getting helped right out of everything I want to do. I want to write my own screenplay, design my own sets, choose my costumes and pick the actors. Don’t you see it’s my project. It has to be my work. I’m the only one who gets graded on it. And if I can’t do it, then the movie’s off, and that’s what it is, off.
(The scene fades with Greg walking away and Carol, Mike and Alice looking worried.)
(The next scene has Greg in his bedroom, with Mike and Carol coming in to talk to him.)
Carol: Greg, we’re sorry.
(She and Mike sit down on his bed.)
Mike: We were just trying to help.
Greg; I know, Dad. I’m sorry I popped off like that.
Carol: You had every right to pop off.
Mike: Even at your pop. (He laughs.)
Carol: It’s your project and you should be able to make your own decisions.
Mike: You handle it any way you want and we’ll do whatever you say.
Greg: Thanks, but the other guys don’t wanna do it my way, so…
Mike: Not anymore, I’ll pass the word that you’re the boss.
Greg (rising a little): And you’ll all do whatever I say?
Carol: Our mouths will be closed.
(They get up to leave. The next scene has the whole family in several scenes helping out with the movie and doing what Greg says to do. The movie begins with Cindy going in the stocks and Greg telling everyone what they should do and how to respond.)
Greg: Now don’t forget, when I say action, you start. When I say cut , you stop. You got it? (They all agree) Now, everyone in their places. Ready to start.
Peter: Ready. (to Jan) Priscilla, how do you like…
Greg: Peter, Peter. Not yet.
Peter: You said start (to Jan) didn’t he say start?
Jan: You said start.
Greg: But you don’t start until I say action. You got it? Okay everybody, ready and action.
Peter: Priscilla, how do you like the new world and living in the…
Greg: New settlement.
Peter: In the new settlement, with spacious skies and amber waves of grain, purple mountain majesties and fruited, above the fruited plain.
Mike (coming up to Greg): Greg, Greg.
Greg: Cut. Come on, Dad. I thought I was supposed to do this for myself.
Carol: Listen, Mike, why don’t you let Greg do it for himself.
Marcia: Yeah, Dad.
Bobby and Cindy: Come on, Dad.
Peter and Jan: Yeah, come on, Dad.
Mike: This time I insist! This time you have got to do what I say or no movie.
Greg: All right, Dad. let’s hear it.
Mike: Son, if you’re going to make a movie, before you shoot the scene, you have to take the cover off the lens.
(All the kids laugh.)
Cindy: You dum-dum.
(The next scene has Alice cast as John Carver.)
Greg: Action! John Carver! (Alice comes out and salutes three times.) Cut! That was great, Alice. That was really great. Now listen, in the next scene, we’ll first see the Indians. Indians! (Peter and Bobby come out.) Do you guys know what you’re supposed to do?
Peter: We attack the fort.
Bobby: Yeah, attack the fort.
Greg: No, you’re friendly Indians, you come in peace.
Peter: We don’t attack?
Greg: No, now, Alice…
Peter: Couldn’t we attack the fort and then make friends?
Carol: Peter, Greg does not want an attack.
Bobby: Then what do you need Indians for?
Mike: Bobby, the Indians were friendly at first. They didn’t start fighting until their land was taken away.
Bobby: You mean the Pilgrims took away all of the Indians’ land?
Mike: That’s right. Well, at first, they didn’t take much of it.
Peter: Then how about not much of an attack?
Greg: There’s no attack! (He goes over to Alice) Alice, when they first come over, you don’t know whether they’re friendly or not until they hold up the friendly sign.
Alice: Check, check. And then I duck out and make my change while the rest of the Pilgrims greet them.
Greg: That’s it. Great! Okay, places everyone. Mom, Mom, over here.
Carol: Yeah, yeah, the butter.
Greg: You’ll be with the butter, right, up and down churning it. Dad, you’re chopping the wood, and try not to look too conspicuous, okay? Okay, everybody ready? And, action! Now, you see the Indians, now you see they’re friendly. Come on, Indians, come on.
Peter: Me Samoset.
Bobby: Me Squanto.
Alice (mocking a British accent): Well, I say, I’m awfully glad to see you. Governor John Carver here, Pilgrim. (She shakes hands with them.) I say, everyone, they’re friendly Indians, bring them beads and trinkets.
Carol: How, friendly Indians.
Everyone else: How!
Carol: Oh, nice feathers.
(Alice is changing costumes at this time. She changes back into a woman but, unfortunately, forgets to take the mustache off.)
Alice: Oh, I say, look at all the friendly Indians.
(Everybody looks at Alice’s mistake.)
Alice (surprised): What did I do wrong? (She realizes what she did.) Oh! (She pulls the mustache off) That’s what I did wrong.
(Next, they’re doing a scene with the Pilgrims experiencing a hard winter.)
Greg: Okay, now, here is the hard winter scene with the snow.
(Peter starts shaking the snow from the top.)
Greg: Peter, stop the snow. Don’t start the snow until I say snow.
Peter: I was just showing them. Isn’t it neat.
(They all agree.)
Greg: Now, everybody pay attention. Will you all pay attention to me? (They wine about how they are paying attention.) Now, come on, really. Now when this thing starts…
Mike: Say, what are these (snowflakes)?
Bobby: They’re corn flakes.
Carol: White corn flakes?
Cindy: We sprayed white paint on them.
Jan: A dozen boxes.
Marcia: And a couple bags of mashed potato flakes.
Carol (surprised): Corn flakes and mashed potato flakes?
Mike: That’s an expensive snowstorm.
Alice: Pretty fattening too.
Greg (impatient): Come on, everybody, pay attention. All right, now it snows. (Peter starts shaking the snow machine) Not yet!
Peter: You said snow!
Greg: But I didn’t mean snow! Look, all right, now when this starts the Pilgrims are standing around the stockade, right? Now you’re all unhappy, you’re wondering why you ever came to this new world. And Dad, you’re in the stocks.
Mike: Me in the stocks? What did I do to deserve to be in the stocks?
Greg: You stole food.
Carol: Oh, shamey, shamey, shamey.
Greg: All right, come on now, the rest of you. you’re all going to look cold and miserable and hungry.
Mike: Why don’t we just eat the snowflakes. (He laughs.)
Greg: Dad, this is supposed to be serious.
Alice: That reminds me, I got lunch in the oven.
Carol: Oh, good.
Marcia: What’s for lunch, Alice?
Alice: Spaghetti and meatballs.
Greg: Let’s start here.
Carol: Oh boy, yummy.
(She and all the kids make the mmm sound.)
Greg; Come on, everybody, let’s get on with the show. (Peter shakes the snow machine again.) Peter! (He shakes it some more and the other kids catch it with their hats.) Will you stop the snow?
Peter: Didn’t you say snow?
Greg: I said show. Oh, boy!
Mike: Greg, calm down. What’s wrong?
Greg (angry): I’m trying to make a movie, Dad. But everybody wants lunch, except this guy, he wants snow. (Peter shakes it again and Greg’s about to reach boiling point.) I said it, I shouldn’t have said it, I knew it, but I did!
Mike (hitting his hat up at Peter): Peter, hold the snow!
Peter: But Greg said…
Mike: Never mind, hold it!
Carol: Um, look Greg, this has been a long morning, so couldn’t we just do this scene and then maybe break for lunch?
(Everyone voices their agreements.)
Greg: Everybody take their places, all right? Dad, you’re in the stocks, Mom, help him in there, would you please?
Carol: Sure, okay.
Greg: Now remember, I want you to be cold and miserable and…
Carol: Yeah, we know, cold, miserable and hungry. And don’t start until I say action. Okay, now, get ready, here we go, and action! (Everyone pretends to be freezing and shivering.) All right, snow. (Peter tries unsuccessfully to shake the machine again.) Peter, snow! (Peter tries again but can’t get it.) Snow.
Peter: It’s stuck.
Greg: Well, fix it!
(Peter dumps the flakes out of the box on top of everybody, especially Mike in the stocks. The scene fades.)
(The next scene has the family in the living room after the movie is completed. They’re gathered around to watch it.)
Mike: Well, it’s really finished. You know, I never thought I’d see this day arrive.
Carol: Oh, I think this is great. Greg made titles and even put his voice on tape.
Greg: Okay, are we ready?
Carol: We sure are.
Greg: Peter, get the lights.
Carol: Hurry up, and kids, please don’t get in front of the screen.
Alice (coming out): Hold everything. You can’t have a movie without popcorn.
Carol: Oh, Alice, you think of everything.
Mike: Did you salt it?
(Bobby grabs some popcorn from Marcia and Cindy.)
Marcia: Watch it!
Greg: Bobby, sit down.
Carol: Yeah, stay in your chairs. (Bobby steals the popcorn) Bobby!
Bobby: I’m sorry.
Greg: Here we go. (He starts using the projector.) Wait till you hear the music and narration I recorded.
(The screen shows the movie title, Our Pilgrim Fathers and Through Hardship to Freedom, as a sub-title. then it shows written, produced and directed by Gregory Brady, with the family cheering and clapping. The next several lines has Greg’s voice on film.)
Greg: It was September the 16th in the year 1620 that the Pilgrims set sail from England for Virginia.
Mike: Say, that looks pretty good.
Carol: That looks real.
Greg: They missed Virginia because in the middle of the Atlantic, they ran into storms. (We hear reactions from the family.) But they persevered and sailed on, and finally they made it to the New World. and on a stormy day, they first set foot on Plymouth Rock. (They show a foot setting on wet land. Next, it shows the family suffering during the winter.) December came and it was very cold.
Cindy: Why are we walking so funny?
Mike: Slow motion. That’s very effective, you know that?
Greg (in person): I put in some special effects, like in those real arty movies. (Now he speaks on film) They didn’t have much shelter, so they got sick.
Carol (laughing at her scene): Oh, would you say I overacted a little? (we see another funny scene of Carol) Oh, well.
Mike: Honey, you’re my favorite ham.
Greg: Then came a terrible snowstorm.
(We see more footage of the family enduring the snow and cold weather.)
Mike: Just call me quiver lips.
Alice: I’m quivering right back at you.
Greg: They got even sicker. And sicker, and sicker, and sicker, and sicker. (It shows footage of them getting very sick and on the verge of death.) Finally, spring came and so did the Indians, so did the Indians. (They show Peter and Bobby coming in their Indian costumes.)
Mike: Squanto and Samoset.
Carol: Yeah, how, how.
Greg: The Indians amazed the Pilgrims by speaking some English. And the Pilgrims made friends with the Indians by inviting them to a feast.
(They show a scene with them at a table with a Thanksgiving dinner.)
Carol: You know Alice, I think I like you better as Alice.
Alice: Thank you.
Greg: First, they gave thanks for safely reaching the New World. Then they ate. And ate, and ate, and ate, and ate, and ate.
(The scene shows the family gluttonously enjoying the meal.)
Carol (to Mike): You look like Henry the Eighth.
Mike: I ate enough turkey.
(They show the next scene which takes place after the meal.)
Greg: Then one day, it was time for the Mayflower to sail back to England. (They show Mike as the captain greeting the Pilgrims.) Captain Jones asked the Pilgrims if any wanted to go back with him. Not one of them did. He reminded them of the storms and the Indians. But they wouldn’t go, so he split. So the Mayflower sailed, leaving the Pilgrims to build a new country, which they did.
(They show a scene with the family dancing around victoriously. The movie ends and the whole family claps.)
Mike (clapping): Hooray!
Carol: Good, that’s very good.
Marcia: That was great.
(The family continues to cheer as we move into the next scene. Greg comes home from school and announces some good news.)
Greg: Mom, Dad.
Carol: What is it, Greg?
Mike: What’s going on.
Greg: That groovy history teacher gave me an A for the movie.
Carol: Congratulations, that’s great.
Mike: She must have liked it, huh?
Greg: Well she didn’t think it was a great movie, but she sure thought I showed how tough it was to be a Pilgrim.
(Mike and Carol laugh as the scene fades out.)
(The final scene has Greg coming home with yet another announcement.)
Greg: Hi, Mom, Hi Dad.
Carol: Hi, honey.
Mike: Hi, Gregory.
Mike: Something on your mind, son?
Greg: We’re studying the American Revolution now.
Carol: Hey, that’s a very interesting time.
Greg: Yeah. Hey listen, I was thinking, now, if we hung a lantern on top of the roof, it could look like the old north church.
Carol (sheepishly): You mean a movie about Paul Revere?
Greg: And the backyard, it could become the green at Concord.
Mike: Wait a minute, Greg.
Greg: And the front porch would make a great Boston Harbor, and I could put a lighthouse in it.
(He walks out of the family room.)
Carol: Well, honey, I guess if he could film the Pilgrims at Plymouth, certainly he can film the ride of Paul Revere.
Mike: I know, but what happens next term?
Mike: When we have to stage the whole Civil War?