What's the rumpus?
Nothing more foolish than a man chasing his hat
By Kimberley Jones, 4:12PM, Fri. Mar. 14, 2008
We'll get to the rumpus in a minute.
When we heard the Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar was showing the Coen Bros.' terrific 1990 gangster noir Miller's Crossing on St. Patrick's Day, we pulled off the shelf our copy of the script – dog-eared and scribbled on and beat all to hell, exactly as our best-loved books should be. We started pawing through for quotables ("Look in your heart!"); truth be told, there are too damn many. ("Don't think so hard, Eddie. You might sprain something.")
Thusly, we give you, in part, the masterful push/pull, I-love-you-I-hate-you seduction scene between Gabriel Byrne's Irish hood Tom Reagan and Marcia Gay Harden's double-crossing vamp, Verna:
Why can't you admit it?
Admit you don't like me seeing Leo because you're jealous. Admit it isn't all cool calculation with you–that you've got a heart–even if it's small and feeble and you can't remember the last time you used it.
If I'd know we were going to cast our feelings into words, I'd have memorized the Song of Solomon.
...Maybe that's why I like you, Tom. I've never met anybody made being a sonofabitch such a point of pride.
She turns to walk away.
... Though someday you'll pay a price for it.
Tom grabs her wrist.
Okay, Verna. But until then, let's get stinko.
He draws her close.
... Let's do something else first.
She reaches up, takes off his hat, and tosses it away. We pan with the hat to where it lands on the floor, in front of a curtained window.
Yeah. Let's do plenty.
Pure poetry, no?
Well, the Drafthouse wants you to do plenty, too – plenty of eating and drinking and moviewatching with its St. Patrick's Day Feast. Taking a page from the picture, Chef Trish Eichelberger's five-course meal will feature dueling Irish vs. Italian plates. See menu, and ticket info, here.
And that, my friend, is the rumpus.