Paulie

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Paulie is a 1998 film about a bird named Paulie, starring Tony Shalhoub, Gena Rowlands, Hallie Kate Eisenberg and Jay Mohr. Mohr performs the voice of Paulie and plays a minor on-screen character.

Dialogue[edit]

[first lines]
[in a institute in Los Angeles during one stormy night, Virgil, an African-American janitor, gives a Russian immigrant, Misha, a tour around the institute, as it continues raining]
Virgil: [to Misha] The agency told you that you had to pay for your own uniforms, right?
Misha: Yes. I provide with money from the job.
Virgil: No, no, no, no, no. You can't start the job without a uniform.
Misha: Then I provide, if I don't get paid.
Virgil: You don't have any money?
Misha: No. This is why I take the job. To make money. This is why I have come to America. To be a big shoot.
Virgil: Shot. Big shot.
Misha: I'll try not to live in the past. Only in present tense, since I came to America.
Virgil: [as he and Misha both enter the institute] Yeah, but "big shoot" absolutely makes no sense. This is the main building with administration, lecture rooms, and laboratories.
[Virgil and Misha both enter the Animal Research room]
Virgil: [to Misha] These are floors from here. [shows Misha cages filled with various dogs, cats, rats, mice, ferrets, pigeons, birds, rabbits, guinea pigs, chimpanzees, and other animals] Don't worry about the cages, or what's in them. The research assistants feed them. You know, they study animal behavior?
Misha: In a cage, only one could behave like a prisoner.
Virgil: A word of advice, my man. Try not to think so much. And whatever you do, don't bother the professors. They're the real big shoots around here.
[Virgil and Misha both enter the basement]
Virgil: [to Misha] Watch your step, Misha. This is Purgatory. I'll go get the trash.
Misha: What kind of bird is this?
Virgil: The biting kind. Be careful.
Misha: [to Paulie] Are you a bird, or a dog? [to Virgil] What is... What is he doing down here?
Virgil: Paulie was an old project for Dr. Reingold. It didn't work out. A loss of funding, or something I can't remember.
Misha: But, he does not eat, I think, and he loses feather.
Virgil: You don't have to worry about him. Come on. I'll show you where the incinerator is.

Tween Paulie: Ivy, please. I'm a bird. I have a small brain, and it's about to explode! Let's try something a little more classy!

Misha: [to Paulie about Marie, Warren, and Lila] So, they bring you here?
[cut to Paulie]
Adult Paulie: No, no. It wasn't that easy hitting Rock Bottom. I did a bunch of things.
[cut to Misha]
Adult Paulie: [off-screen] First, I did a stint as a window display in a place called, Bloomingdale's.
[cut to Paulie]
Adult Paulie: And I was in a brochure for Costa Rica.
[cut to Misha]
Adult Paulie: [off-screen] I did some work as a magician's assistant
[cut to another flashback showing Downtown New Jersey City during one wintertime following the event of Paulie's adventure with Zintar the Magician, as the camera pans over to Loans, a pawnshop owned by a short, fat, New Jersey-accented old man named Artie]
Narrator: doing children's parties. But, when Zintar fell on hard times, he had to choose between me, and the cape.
[the Tom Jones song "What's New, Pussycat?" plays on Artie's radio]
Narrator: Guess which one he pawned.
Tween Paulie: [singing] What's new, Pussycat? Woah, woah, woah, woah, woah. What's new, Pussycat? Woah, woah, woah, woah, woah.
Artie: [to Paulie] Shut up, you goddamn flying rat! Shut up!
Tween Paulie: [singing] Pussycat, pussycat, you are so delicious. And if my wishes could only come true...
Artie: [to Paulie] Maybe you are uncomfortable in there. Maybe you need a change. How about this... uh... nice toaster oven for little old Top Brown only, huh?
Tween Paulie: Oh, come on, Artie. We haven't pawned anything all day. Look, let's go catch the Number Nine at Belmont. I'm bored.
Artie: You and me both.
Tween Paulie: I wanna go home.
Artie: Yeah, well, [a side burned Benny, a New Jersey-accented thief, enters the pawnshop with a stolen radio] get on the line.
Benny: [to Artie] You know, Artie, today is your lucky day.
Artie: Right. [inspects the stolen radio] Fresh out of the showroom, right? Where's the receipt?
Benny: I lost it.
Artie: Ten bucks.
Benny: Ten bucks?! Come on, gimme a break, Artie! I'm trying to upgrade the level of your merchandise here!
Tween Paulie: [to Benny] Hit the brakes, ugly!
Benny: Aw, that's cute. [to Artie] Are you training your bird to insult your customers?
Tween Paulie: [to Benny] No, but I could tell you're ugly all by myself.
Benny: [to Artie] How'd he do that?
Artie: He watches television.
Benny: What an angle. [to Paulie] I could see how his unique skills could really come in handy to an intelligent guy, huh?!
Tween Paulie: Well, I'll let you know when I'll see one.

[an old woman artist, Ivy, enters the pawnshop with an easel that her late husband, Earl, an ex-marine, gave to her as a present]
Benny: [to Artie] How much do you want for him, Artie?
Artie: A lot more than ten bucks, baby. You'd have to grift for more than a year to make his numbers.
Ivy: [to Paulie, Artie, and Benny] Okay, which one of you three is the proprietor?
Artie: [to Ivy] Very funny, toots. Uh... What have you there?
Ivy: Oh, this? This is... This is my easel.
Artie: Mmm-hmm.
Ivy: It's a fine one. My late husband go it for me, and I really hate to part with it, you know.
Artie: Yeah, whatever. Uh... Dead husband aside. Uh... Do you wanna pawn, or sell?
Ivy: Well...
Tween Paulie: [to Ivy] The real question is, aren't you prepared to throw in that potholder on your head?!
Ivy: Well, that was extremely rude! [to Artie] Did you teach him to do that?
Benny: [to Ivy] Uh... No. No, that's the thing. [points at Artie] The dirty mouth is all his.
Ivy: [looks at Paulie]
Tween Paulie: [to Ivy] What are you looking at?!
Ivy: [to Artie] You know, I think I'll take him with me.
Benny: [to Ivy] Well, I don't think so, lady. You see, I saw the bird first.
Ivy: Oh, no, no, no. I'm... I'm afraid you are not the right owner for him. [as Artie and Benny look at each other] Uh... You know, somebody has got to teach this beautiful bird some manners. Then it might as well be me.
Tween Paulie: But, what's wrong with my manners?! [belches] BUUUUURRRRRPPPPP!

Ivy: [to Paulie] That's it. Very good. You know, you should learn how to fly, Paulie.
Adolescent Paulie: Well, the last time someone suggested that, it didn't work out so good.
Ivy: You were missing out on doing something that was probably pretty great.
Adolescent Paulie: Hey! Why don't you try it, and let me know? Aren't you tired?
Ivy: Mmmm... Well, a little bit.

Ivy: Oh! Oh.
Paulie: You know, maybe your house shouldn't have wheels.
Ivy: Oh, dear. All right, all right. I'll go get some help. You stay here. You know, it's... Don't be frightened. Let's see.

[The flashback shows where Marie is playing on the tire swing]
Marie's Mother: Marie! Marie, come see what your grandpa brought you.
[Marie's Mother leaves and Marie follows her into the house. She meets her grandpa]
Marie: [stuttering] G-G-Grandpa!
Grandpa: My beautiful girl.
[Marie's Mother holds a flower pot and smiles]
Marie: W-What d-did you bring me?
Marie's Mother: Look in the basket, sweetie.
[Marie opens the basket and finds Young Paulie]
Paulie: [voice over] I opened my eyes, and there she was.
Marie: B-Bird.
[Marie picks up Young Paulie. Marie's Mother and grandpa smiles]
Paulie: [voice over] I didn't know what this creature was, but I liked it.
Grandpa: I thought I'd give her someone to talk to. I named him Paulie.
Marie: [cuddles Young Paulie] Pretty P-Paulie.
Paulie: [voice over] Pretty Marie.
[Marie hugs Young Paulie]

Paulie: It's a long story.
Misha: I'm Russian. I like long stories!
Paulie: All right, Chekov. Sit down. It all started with Marie.
Misha: The one from the song?
Paulie: Yeah. The one from the song.

Warren: I just cannot believe you didn't tell me about this.
Lila: Warren, I wanted to write you.
Warren: Well, then why didn't you?
Lila: Because I didn't know what to say. Marie's voice is going away.
Warren: Well, is she getting any better? Is it going away, Lila?
Lila: No, but it won't go away, if you haven't put too much pressure on her.
Warren: Lila, I don't think you put enough pressure on her.
Lila: Warren, she's a little girl. I can't stand to see her suffer. I can't stand it!
Warren: What happens when she goes to school? Do you think she'll be made fun of? Because I can guarantee you she will be.
Lila: Well, what do you think we're supposed to do about it?
Warren: You're telling me. All this "We love you, no matter what you can do." stuff isn't going to work anymore.
Lila: All right, we'll just order her to stop stuttering. Is that the only way we can do to help her?

Ivy: Are you ready?
Paulie: I'm ready.
Ivy: So long, Jersey!
Paulie: So long, Jersey!
Narrator: I thought flying was scary - until I drove with Ivy. Now, that's scary.

Ivy: But, you know, what's the matter with New Jersey? It's nice, if you will just give it a chance.
Paulie: Why does your house have wheels?
Ivy: Houses are a lot cheaper with wheels.
Paulie: I was thinking more along the lines that houses with wheels can go to places.
Ivy: Well, not anymore, I'm afraid. Earl and I used to travel all of the time, you know. But things change. He had even crazier ideas than you have got. We always used to talk about going to The Grand Canyon, but we just never got that far. Yow know, Earl said that if you stand right at the edge just when the sun comes up, it's like seeing the first sunrise in the whole world.
Paulie: He was kind of poetic, wasn't he?
Ivy: For an ex-Marine.
Paulie: Hmm, you miss Earl.
Ivy: Oh, let's not talk about that.
Paulie: You miss Earl.
Ivy: Eat your dinner.
Paulie: Like I miss Marie.

Ivy: [to Paulie, as she is on the verge of dying] The doctor said that I really shouldn't drive around anymore. So, you'll just have to go ahead without me. Los Angeles is due west from here right into the setting sun.
Adolescent Paulie: Well, I'll be your eyes. I can watch the road for you. Besides, I can't go without you.
Ivy: Oh, of course, you can. Listen, I'm not really a fond of "goodbye"s, dear. So, I think you should go. Just right now. And you'll send me a postcard, when you get there. Okay? [to herself, as she tries to find her comb] Now, where did I put my comb? I know it's around here, someplace.
Adolescent Paulie: [notices Ivy's comb, picks it up with his beak, and then flies over to Ivy and gives her comb to her]
Ivy: Oh! [to Paulie] Thank you.
Narrator: And so, I stayed.
[scene fades to a view of the sequoia forest, as Paulie and Ivy are walking towards her camper within the camper parking lot]
Ivy: [to Paulie] Are we nearly home yet?
Adolescent Paulie: Go to your right here. There you go.
Ivy: You know what you are, Paulie? You're my seeing-eye parrot.
[dissolve to sunset]
Ivy: You've been a dear friend to me, Paulie. We're birds of a feather, you and I. Betwixt and between, that's us. So, what do we have tonight? Is it pretty?
Adolescent Paulie: Oh, very pretty. There's more orange now, and it's getting darker. Just a little gold left.
Ivy: The sun must be almost set. Can you see any stars yet?
Adolescent Paulie: Not yet.
Narrator: And then one day, the cat
[cut to an ambulance pulling away]
Narrator: got her.
Adolescent Paulie: [sighs] Oh. [turns around, and notices the finished masterpiece of Paulie Ivy has made]
Narrator: There are things in life you put off, because you think you can do them later. But, the real thing Ivy taught me was, that you'll have to learn to live it like there may not be a "later".

Ignacio: What's your story?
Paulie: I'm Paulie, and I'm looking for someone named Marie Alweather. Can you tell me where I am?
Ignacio: You're in L. A.. East L. A..
Paulie: East L. A.? East L. A.! I made it! I made it!
Ignacio: You can talk?
Paulie: [looking at Ignacio's parrots] They can talk.
Ignacio: Them? They don't talk! I say "taco", they say "taco".
Parrots: Taco, taco, taco, taco!
Paulie: Are they okay?
Ignacio: Sure, they're okay. But, I don't know about me. [to himself] I'm talking to a bird. Okay. I'm talking to a bird. [to Paulie] Is her daddy's name Moe?
Paulie: Uh-uh. Warren.
Ignacio: Oh. Well, I'm sorry, amigo. Such an Alweather is not in this phone book. Maybe they have an unlisted number. How can I get him into playing this game? You know, I've been thinking. Can you carry a tune, or a dance, or anything?
Paulie: What do you mean?

Ignacio: [to Paulie, Lupe, Chaco, and Paco] Hmmm... Tell you what. Why don't we have, like, one guy on each end, and, like, Lupe in the middle, huh?

Paulie: You're not going to kiss me, are you?
Benny: What? Get outta here.

Ruby: [to Benny] Excuse me, I don't mean to interrupt your little testosterone festival here, but the bird right here hasn't made us that much money.
Benny: Hello? What are you talking about, "that much money"? We're doing great.
Ruby: I should be, like, lounging by a pool in a mansion, wearing a mink coat, and, like, 18 karat diamond earrings.
Adolescent Paulie: [to Benny about what Ruby has said] She's right. We're wasting our time, chump change, when there are rocks to be grifted.
Benny: Wait. Uh... What do you know about diamonds?
Adolescent Paulie: We met in a pawnshop, Einstein.
Ruby: [to Paulie, as she shows him her diamond ring she is wearing] You can tell a real diamond from a fake?
Adolescent Paulie: Yeah. I've seen shot glasses cut better than that.
Ruby: [to Benny] I cannot believe you, Benito. You're gonna get me a real diamond! [inhaling sharply] And you're gonna help him!
Benny: Diamonds?! Well, Ruby, it's a little bit out of my league here!
Ruby: Your league, but not his.

Benny: What's taking him so long?
Ruby: I don't know.

Researcher 1: Okay, we're going to ask you some questions. We'd like for you to identify the picture. [shows Paulie a picture card with a duck on it] What is this?
Adolescent Paulie: [annoyed] Duck.
Researcher 1: [shows more cards] What is this?
Adolescent Paulie: Kite. Umbrella. Look, I don't see how this is "bridging the gap".
Dr. Reingold: Uh... Well, look, Paulie, I know this is frustrating, but we have to follow a protocol, if we're gonna prove you're capable of cognizant speech.
Adolescent Paulie: Everyone can see that I can talk!
Researcher 1: [shows another card with a pie on it] What is this?
Adolescent Paulie: Now, what is that word again for, uh, a dish composed of meat, fowl, fish or vegetables, covered in a layer of paste and baked...? Oh, yeah! It's a pie! Then again, a "pie" could be a magpie, a collection of rules, a copper coin, or what you call a fine lookin' lady. [to a woman taking notes] And if you don't believe me, look it up, blondie. But "pie" can also mean a whole, as in the pie of which we crave a piece, like the whole enchilada, the big salami, the grand prize - the talking bird which you hope will make you rich! That kind of pie! Me! I'm the pie here, and if you don't mind taking your fingers out of me for a moment, I'd like to get some lunch, you lab rat!
Researcher 2: [to Reingold, after an awkward pause] How do I score that?
Narrator Misha: [starts laughing]
[cut back to the present, as Misha laughs at Paulie, who is off-screen, about what Paulie has said]
Misha: [laughing] Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! [to Paulie] Did you said that?
Adult Paulie: I told you talking just gets you into trouble.
Misha: No, it's not that. I-It's how you say things. You'll have to be careful. A woman would ask you, "Do you like my new hat?" You would say, "No. New hat make you look like new floor mop." You get punched in the nose.
Adult Paulie: I got worse than that.

Dr. Reingold: What do you think you're doing?
Misha: I'm taking him.
Dr. Reingold: You're what?
Misha: I'm taking him back to where he belongs.
Dr. Reingold: He belongs to the institute.
Misha: No, he belongs to little girl, who needs him. And you knew. You knew it all the time. [to Paulie] Paulie, come.
Dr. Reingold: Who do you think you are?
Misha: I am Mikeal Andreovich Belenkoff, and you are a liar, and a coward, and a very rude man.
Dr. Reingold: And you're fired.
Misha: No, I am not fire. I am quit.
Dr. Reingold: You!

[last lines]
Adult Paulie: Don't be afraid to speak.
Adult Marie: [to Misha] I'd love it, if you stayed.
Misha: You know, I would like that. I would like that very much.
Adult Marie: [to Paulie] Paulie, how did you find me?
Adult Paulie: Well, it's a long story.
Misha: [to Marie, chuckling] It's the only kind he knows.

External links[edit]

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