D E A D   P O E T'S   S O C I E T Y

        final draft




        On the left is a life-sized mural depicting a group of young
        school boys looking up adoringly at a woman who represents
        liberty.  On the right is a mural showing young men gathered
        around an industrialist in a corporate boardroom.  Between the
        murals stands a boy.

        An odd, blaring MUSICAL SOUND starts and stops, interrupted
        by the noise of pumping.  A teacher hurries to the boy,
        adjusts his tie, and leads him off.

        On another wall is a full-sized portrait of a 19th century
        Scotsman in a kilt.  In front at this, young boys carrying
        banners, and several elderly men in old-fashioned costumes
        assembling into a processional formation.  Nervous younger
        boys (7th graders) are shown their places in line and handed
        candles.  They light each others.' candles until all their
        candles are lit.

        Suddenly the MUSIC BLASTS FORTH in its full splendor.  It is
        a BAGPIPE.  The bagpiper, in a kilt like the one in the
        portrait, begins a processional march.

2       INT CORRIDOR ADJACENT THE DINING ROOM - SAME                    2

        The bagpiper enters a long slate and stone hallway.  The
        haunting timbre of his antiquated instrument reverberates
        through the building.  Momentarily, he is followed by the
        other processional marchers. He leads them down the corridor
        and down a threshold staircase into:

3       INT. WELTON'S OLD, STONE CHAPEL  - CONTINUOUS                   3

        Where two hundred high school-aged boys--most of whom wear
        black blazers--sit on either side of the central aisle
        watching the procession move onto the dais in front.  Beside
        most of these boys are their parents.



        Each boy is dressed in an archaic, turn-of-the-century
        outfit.  On each banner is emblazoned a different word.  One
        reads "TRADITION," another reads "HONOR",' a third reads
        DISCIPLINE, the last reads 'EXCELLENCE."

        in their 70s and SOS, obviously the school's oldest alumni,
        each wearing a name tag and the uniform of his day, make their
        way toward the stage.


        carrying candles are nervous and self-conscious.  Most
        concentrate intently on keeping their candles lit while they
        march.  One young boy's candle has gone cut and he can barely
        keep from crying.

        The bagpiper stands at the corner of the dais, marching in
        place.  Behind him, in black robes, sit the school's 30-odd
        teachers.  The processional's elderly alumni fill the chairs
        of honor on the dais.

        The four young BANNER CARRIERS peel off from the main aisle
        and take seats beside their parents in the audience.  The 7th
        graders take seats with their parents too.  A purple and black
        robed man who brings up the rear of the procession walks up to
        the podium.  Me is HEADMASTER GALE NOLAN, a big man, in his
        mid-60s.  The music stops.

                 Ladies and gentlemen, distinguished
                 alumni, and students:  This year marks
                 the one hundredth year that Welton
                 Academy has been in existence.

        Applause begins.  Soon the whole room is standing in a
        thunderous ovation.  After an appropriate amount of time,
        Nolan motions for everyone to be seated.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
        One hundred years ago, in 1859, forty-one boys sat in this
        room and were asked the same question that now greets you at
        the start of each semester:  Gentlemen, what are the four

        All of the students stand at attention.  Find TODD ANDERSON
        sitting between his parents.  Todd is 16, good looking, but he
        seems beaten down, lacking confidence, unhappy.  He wears a
        name tag and no Welton blazer.  When the others stand, Todd's
        mother nudges him.  Todd stands.  He watches as the other

                                ALL THE BOYS IN UNISON
                 Tradition!  Honor!  Discipline!

        All the boys sit.  Todd sits too.  All is silent again.

                 In her first year, Welton Academy
                 graduated five students.  Last year we
                 graduated fifty-one and over seventy-five
                 percent of those went to the Ivy League!

        Applause.  During it we rind KNOX OVERSTREET and CHARLIE
        DALTON, both 16, and both in Welton blazers.  Knox (sitting
        between his parents) carries a banner.  He has curly hair,
        looks outgoing, is short but well built.  Charlie, also with
        his parents, has a handsome yet friendly face.  He carries no
        banner but, when Nolan mentions Ivy League, both these boys
        fit the bill.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
                 This kind of accomplishment is the
                 result of fervent dedication to the
                 principles taught here.  This is why you
                 parents have been sending us your sons,
                 and this is why we are the best
                 preparatory school in the United States.
                        (more applause)
                 New students

        All turn to look at the new students the 7th graders and
        transfer students.  Todd Anderson is among them and he looks
        incredibly self-conscious.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
                 The key to your success rests on our
                 four pillars.  These are the bywords of
                 this school and they will become the
                 cornerstones of your lives.  Welton
                 Society candidate Richard Cameron...

        In the audience, not far from Todd is Richard CAMERON, one of
        the banner carriers, 16, his father's little clone.  He stands
        eagerly to attention.  Too eagerly.

                 Yes sir!

                 What is Tradition?

                 Tradition, Mr. Nolan, is love of school,
                 country, and family.  Our tradition at
                 Welton is to be the best!

                 Good, Mr. Cameron.  Welton Society
                 Candidate George Hopkins.  Honor.

        Cameron sits.  His father beams smugly.

                                HOPKINS (O.S.)
                 Honor is dignity and the fulfillment of

                 Good, Mr. Hopkins.  Honor Society
                 Candidate, Knox Overstress

        Knox, as mentioned, is a banner-holder.  He stands.

                 Yes sir.

                 What is discipline?

                 Discipline is respect for parents,
                 teachers, headmaster.  Discipline comes
                 from within.

                 Thank you, Mr. Overstress.  Honor
                 Candidate Neil Perry.

        Knox sits.  Knox's proud father and mother give him pats of
        encouragement.  NEIL PERRY stands.  Whereas some boys have two
        or three achievement pins an the lapels of their coats, Neil
        has a huge cluster of them on the pocket of his jacket. Neil
        is 16, intense, a born leader.  However, there is more than a
        hint of anger and dissatisfaction in his eyes.  Beside him
        sits his unsmiling father, MR. PERRY.

                 Excellence, Mr. Perry.

                                NEIL (rote)
                 Excellence is the result of hard work.
                 Excellence is the key to all success, in
                 school and everywhere.

        Neil sits.  He doesn't look at his father nor does his father
        look at him.

                 Gentlemen, at Welton you will work
                 harder than you have ever worked in your
                 lives, and your reward will be the
                 success that all of us expect of you.  I
                 would now like to call to the podium
                 Welton's oldest living graduate- Mr.
                 Alexander Carmichael, Jr., Class of 1866.

        An octogenarian on stage shuns help from those beside him and
        makes his way slowly--excruciatingly slowly--to the podium As
        the audience rises to another standing ovation

                                                             DISSOLVE TO:

4       EXT. THE WELTON ACADEMY - MAIN LAWN - DAY                       4

        Welton Academy is a cluster of traditional weathered stone
        buildings.  The time is 1959 but at Welton this is irrelevant.
        This school with its traditions is completely isolated from
        the politics or trends of the outside world.

        The students stand with their parents under a giant tent.
        Finger food, coffee, tea and punch are laid cut on white
        clothed tables.

        Charlie's mother stands dotingly fixing Charlie's hair.  Then
        she kisses him.

        Knox's father has his hand affectionately around his son.

        Mr. Perry stands adjusting the achievement pins on Neil's

        Todd Anderson's parents stand chatting with another couple,
        paying no attention to Todd who looks very much alone.
        Mr.Nolan walks by and looks at Todd's name tag.

                 Ah, Mr. Anderson.  You have some big
                 shoes to fill, young man.  Your brother
                 was one of our best.

                        (faint, almost inaudible)
                 Thank you.

        Neil's father, Neil in tow, approaches Nolan and interrupts.

                                MR. PERRY
                        (somewhat disturbed)
                 Gale. what's this I hear about a new
                 junior English teacher?

                 Mr. Gladden took the Headmaster's post
                 at Malford, so we've hired John Keating.

                                MR. PERRY
                 A former student, I hear?

                 A star student, Mr. Perry.  And he's
                 spent the last ten years teaching at the
                 McMillan School in Edinburgh.

                                MR. PERRY
                        (acting impressed)
                 Oh.  McMillan.

        Nolan looks around.  He finds, then indicates:

        ACROSS THE LAWN a black-robed teacher stands with his back to
        us, staring at the beautiful Welton LAKE.  As if he sensed he
        was being watched, he turns and faces us. This is JOHN
        KEATING, late 30s, sparkling eyes.

        Nolan puts his arm on Mr. Perry's shoulder and leads him off.

                 Come meet him.  You'll like him.

        We watch Nolan escort Mr. Perry across the lawn and introduce
        him to Mr. Keating who walks up to greet them.  Todd stands
        alone, looking around.  Neil Perry, now left alone, does the
        same.  Both watch the other students saying good-byes to their

5       EXT. THE WELTON ACADEMY PARKING LOT - DAY                       5

        The 7th graders are saying good-bye to their parents.  Chins
        quiver.  Young eyes hold back tears.  Some boys sob.  For most
        of these young boys this is the first time in their lives that
        they will be away from their parents and their homes, and it
        is a devastating experience.


        Welton Academy sits in a lonely and isolated valley in woods
        of Vermont.  Though the setting is beautiful, its isolation
        only highlights the loneliness that most of the 7th graders
        feel at this moment.

6       OMIT                                                            6


        The 50 or so members of the junior class sit in chairs or
        stand around the room.  The students that were featured
        earlier are here:  Todd Anderson, Neil Perry, Knox Overstress,
        Charlie Dalton, Richard Cameron.  All except Todd wear Welton
        blazers.  Todd sticks out and he knows it.

        A staircase against a wall leads to a 2nd-floor door.  That
        door opens and down the stairs file five boys.  An old teacher
        (DR. HAGER) comes to the door and calls out five names.

                 Overstreet, Perry, Dalton, Anderson,

        These boys file up the staircase.  As they do, a seated boy
        (PITTS) leans to the boy next to him (STEVEN MEEKS).  Meeks
        has sweet egghead looks and very short hair.  He wears a
        pocket watch and chain.

                 Who's the new boy?


        Old Hager sees this conversation.

                 Misters Pitts and Meeks.  Demerits.

        Pitts and Meeks look down. Pitts glances at Necks and rolls
        his eyes.

                                HAGER (CONT'D)
                 That's another demerit, Mr. Pitts.

        Pitts' smile vanishes.  Hager closes the door.

8       INT THE HEADMASTER'S OFFICE - SAME                              8

        The five boys take seats in a row of chairs facing Mr. Nolan.
        Nolan sits behind his desk, a HUNTING DOG on the floor beside

                 Welcome. back, Mr. Dalton.  How's your

                 Doing fine, sir.

                 Your family move into that new house,
                 Mr. Overstreet?

                 Yes sir, about a month ago.

                 Wonderful.  I hear It's beautiful. (he
                 gives the dog a snack)
                 Mr. Anderson, since. you're new here,
                 let me explain that at Welton, I assign
                 extracurricular activities on the basis
                 of merit and desire.  These activities
                 are taken every bit as seriously as your
                 class work...  right, boys?

                                CHARLIE, CAMERON, KNOX
                 Yes sir!

                 Failure to attend required meetings will
                 result in demerits.  Mr. Dalton the
                 school paper, the Service Club, soccer,
                 rowing.  Mr. Overstress  Welton Society
                 Candidates, the school paper, soccer,
                 Sons of Alumni Club.  Mr. Perry  Welton
                 Society Candidates, Chemistry Club,
                 Mathematics Club, school annual, soccer.
                 Mr. Cameron  Welton Society Candidates,
                 Debate Club, rowing, Service Club,
                 forensics, Honor Council.  Mr. Anderson
                 based on your record at Balincrest,
                 soccer, Service Club, school annual.
                 Anything else I don't know about?

        Todd struggles.  He looks like he is trying to speak but
        nothing is coming out of his mouth.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
                 Speak up, Mr. Anderson.

                        (barely audible)
                 I would prefer rowing sir.

        It is apparent that Todd's fear of speaking is overwhelming.
        Nolan looks at him.

                 Rowing? Did he say rowing?  It says here
                 you played soccer at Balincrest.

                        (again barely audible)

        Sweat breaks out on Todd's brow.  He clinches his hands,
        turning his knuckles white.  He looks like he is going to
        burst into tears.  The other boys look at him.

                 You'll like soccer here, Anderson.

        The boys stand and exit.  Todd looks absolutely miserable.
        The teacher at the door calls out more names.

9       EXT. WELTON CAMPUS - DAY                                        9

        The Welton students walk toward their dorms.  Neil Perry
        approaches Todd Anderson who walks alone.  Neil offers his

                 I hear we're going to be roommates.
                 Neil Perry.

                 Todd Anderson.

        Todd keeps walking.  There is an awkward silence.

                 Why'd you leave Balincrest?

                 My brother went here.

                 Oh, so you're that Anderson.

10      INT. THE JUNIOR DORM LOBBY - CONTINUOUS                        10

        Neil and Todd have walked into the dorm lobby.

                 My parents wanted me here all along but
                 my grades weren't good enough.  I had to
                 go to Balincrest to pull them up.

                 Well, you've won the booby prize.  Don't
                 expect to like it here.

                 I don't.


        Each small room contains two single beds, two closets, and
        two desks.  Suitcases sit on the floor.  Neil enters. Richard
        Cameron sticks in his head.

                 Heard you got the new boy.  He's a hell
                 of a speaker, huh? Oops.

        Todd Anderson walks in.  Cameron ducks out.  Todd has heard
        Cameron s comment, but he ignores it.  He puts his suitcase on
        his bed and begins unpacking.

                 Don't mind Cameron.  He's an asshole.

        There is a knock on the door.  Knox Overstress, Charlie
        Dalton, and Steven Meeks enter.  Charlie speaks to Neil.

                 Hey, I heard you went to summer school?

                 Yeah, chemistry.  My father thought I
                 should get ahead.

                 Well, Meeks aced Latin and I didn't
                 quite flunk English so if you want, we've
                 got our study group.

                 Sure, but Cameron asked me too.  Anybody
                 mind including him?

                 What's his specialty, brown-nosing?

        Some chuckles.

                 Hey, he's your roommate.

                 That's not my fault.

        Nobody is excited about Cameron but no one objects.

                        (to Todd)
                 I don't think we've met.  I'm Steven

                        (shyly extending his hand)
                 Todd.  Anderson.

        Knox and Charlie offer Todd handshakes.

                 Charlie Dalton.

                 Knox Overstreet.

        Todd shakes their hands.

                 Todd's brother is Jeffrey Anderson.

                 Oh yeah.  Sure.  Valedictorian, National
                 Merit Scholar

        Todd nods affirmative.

                 Well, welcome to "Hell"ton.

                 It's every bit as hard as they say.
                 Unless you're a genius like Meeks.

                 He flatters me so I'll help him with

                 And English, and trig

        Meeks smiles.  There is a knock on the door.

                 It's open.

        Neil's father enters.  Neil is surprised.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 Father.  I thought you'd... gone.

        All the boys stand.

                                MEEKS, CHARLIE, KNOX
                 Mr. Perry.

                                MR. PERRY
                 Keep your seats, boys.  How's it going?

                                THE BOYS
                 Fine, sir.  Thank you.

                                MR. PERRY
                 Neil, I've decided that you're taking
                 too many extracurricular activities.
                 I've spoken to Mr. Nolan about it and you
                 can work on the school annual next year.

                 But father, I'm assistant editor.

                                MR. PERRY
                 I'm sorry, Neil.

                 But father, it's not fair.

                                MR. PERRY
                 Fellows, would you excuse us a minute?

        Mr. Perry walks into the hall,  Neil follows.

12      INT. THE JUNIOR DORMITORY HALLWAY - SAME                       12

                                MR. PERRY
                 I will not be disputed in public, do you
                 understand me?

                 Father, I wasn't disputing you.

                                MR. PERRY
                 When you've finished medical school and
                 you're on your own, you can do as you
                 please.  Until then, you will listen to

                 Yes sir.  I'm sorry.

                                MR. PERRY
                 You know what this means to your mother,
                 don't you?

                 Yes sir.

        Using the pressures of guilt and punishment, Mr. Perry is the
        most subtle of bullies.  Neil's resolve crumbles in front of
        his authoritarian father.  Neil fills the pause.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 You know me, always taking on too much.

                                MR. PERRY
                 Good boy.  Call us if you need anything.

        He turns and walks off.

13      INT. NEIL'S ROOM                                               13

        The others wait in silence.  A chastened Neil enters.

                 Why doesn't he let you do what you want?

                 Yeah!  Tell him off!  It couldn't get
                 any worse.

                 Oh that's rich.  Like you tell your
                 parents off, Mr. Future Lawyer and Mr.
                 Future Banker!

        Neil takes the school annual achievement pin off his shirt
        and hurls it at his desk.

                 Wait a minute.  I don't let my parents
                 walk on me.

                 Yeah, you just do everything they say!
                 You'll be in daddy's law firm as sure as
                 I'm standing here.
                        (to Charlie)
                 And you'll be approving loans till you

                 Okay, so I don't like it any more than
                 you do.  I'm just saying

                 Then don't tell me how to talk to my
                 father when you're the same way.  All

                 All right.  Jesus, what are you gonna

                 What I have to do.  Screw the annual.

                 I certainly wouldn't lose any sleep over
                 it.  It's just a bunch of people trying
                 to impress Nolan.

                 Screw it all.  I don't give a damn about
                 any of it.

        He slams his hand into his pillow and lies back silently.
        Everyone is quiet, sensing Neil's disappointment.  Finally,
        Charlie breaks the silence.

                 I don't know about anyone else, but I
                 could use a refresher in Latin.  Eight
                 o'clock in my room?


                 You're welcome to join us, Todd.

                 Yeah, come along.

                 Thank you.

        The boys leave.  Neil lies in silence.  He sees the
        achievement pin that he threw and picks it up.  Todd continues
        to unpack.  He unpacks a photo of his mother and father with
        their arms around an older boy who is obviously Todd's brother
        Jeffrey.  Todd stands to one side, slightly apart from the
        family group.  Todd unpacks an engraved leather desk set
        (pens, blotter, etc.) and puts it on his desk.

                 So what do you think of my father?

                        (softly, to himself)
                 I'll take him over mine.



                 Todd, if you're gonna make it around
                 here, you've gotta speak up.  The meek
                 might inherit the earth but they don't
                 get into Harvard. know what I mean?

        Todd nods.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 The goddamn bastard!

        He presses the metal point of the pin into his thumb, drawing
        blood.  Todd winces.  Neil doesn't.  Neil hurls the pin again.

14      INT. A CHEMISTRY CLASSROOM - DAY                               14

        The classroom is a laboratory: filled with flasks, etc.
        Neil, Todd, Knox, Charlie, Cameron, Meeks and other members of
        the junior class sit around the room.  A bespectacled teacher
        stands in front, passing out thick textbooks.

                                CHEMISTRY TEACHER
                 In addition to the assignments in the
                 text, you will each pick three lab
                 experiments from the project list and
                 report on one every five weeks.  The
                 first twenty problems at the end of
                 chapter one are due: tomorrow.

        ANGLE ON CHARLIE DALTON as the thick textbooks arrive at his
        desk.  He shoots a disbelieving glance at Knox Overstreet who
        can only acknowledge with a shake of his head.  Todd takes his
        books without reacting.

15      INT. LATIN CLASS - DAY                                         15

        The same students sit before a Latin teacher in his early
        60's  He declines a Latin noun with a thick Scottish brogue.

                 Agricola, agricolae, agricolas,
                 Agricolas, agricolatis, agricolatus

        struggle to follow along with McAllister's lesson.

16      INT. A MATHEMATICS CLASS - DAY                                 16

        Mathematical charts hang on the walls.  The elderly bald
        teacher (the one from Nolan's doorway), Dr. Hager, passes out
        books.  The students' work load is huge.

                 Your study of trigonometry requires
                 absolute precision.  Anyone failing to
                 turn in any homework assignment will be
                 penalized one point off his final grade.
                 Let me urge you now not to test me on
                 this point.  Who would like to begin by
                 defining a cosine?

        Richard Cameron stands.

                 A cosine is the sin of the compliment of
                 an angle or arc.  If we define an angle
                 A, then...

17      INT. ENGLISH CLASSROOM - DAY                                   17

        The junior students--Todd, Neil, Knox, Charlie, Cameron,
        Meeks and some of the others we've seen--enter.  They are
        loaded down with books and look weary.  Sitting in the front
        of the room, staring out the window is JOHN KEATING, the
        teacher we glimpsed earlier.  He wears a collared shirt, tie,
        no jacket.

        The boys take seats and settle in.  Keating stares out the
        window a long time.  The students start to shuffle
        uncomfortably.  Finally Keating stands, picks up a yardstick,
        and begins slowly strolling the aisles.  He stops and stares
        into the face of one of the boys.

                        (to the blushing boy)
                 Don't be embarrassed.

        He moves off, then stops in front of Charlie Dalton.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                        (as if discovering
                         something known only to
                        (he moves to Todd Anderson)
                        (he moves to Neil Perry)

        Keating slaps his free hand with the yardstick, then strides
        to the front of the room.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Nimble young minds!

        He steps up onto the desk, turns and faces the class.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Oh Captain, My Captain. Who knows where
                 that's from?

        No one raises a hand.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 It was written by a poet named Walt
                 Whitman about Mr. Abraham Lincoln.  In
                 this class you may refer to me as either
                 Mr. Keating, or Oh Captain, My Captain.

        Keating steps down and starts. strolling the aisles.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 So that I become the source of as few
                 rumors as possible, let me tell you that
                 yes, I was a student at this institution
                 many moons ago, and no, at that time I
                 did not possess this charismatic
                 personality.  However, should you choose
                 to emulate my manner, it can only help
                 your grade.  Pick up a textbook from the
                 back, gentlemen, and let's retire to the
                 honor room.

        He steps off the desk and walks out.  The students sit, not
        sure what to do, then realize they are to follow him.  They
        quickly gather their books, pick up texts, and follow.

18      INT. THE WELTON OAK PANELED HONOR ROOM - DAY                   18

        This is the room where the boys waited earlier.  The walls
        are lined with class pictures: dating back into the 1800s.
        School trophies of every description fill trophy cases and
        shelves.  Keating leads the students in, then faces the class.

                        (Keating looks at his roll)
                 Pitts.  An unfortunate name.  Stand up,
                 Mister Pitts.

        Pitts stands.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
        Open your text, Pitts,  to page forty and read for us the
        first stanza of the poem.

        Pitts looks through his book.  He finds the poem.

                 To The Virgins to Make Much Of Time?

                 That's the one.

        Giggles in the class.  Pitts reads.

                 Gather ye rosebuds while ye may

        Old time is still a flying

                 And this same flower that smiles today

                 Tomorrow will be dying.

                 Gather ye rosebuds while ye may.  The
                 Latin term for that sentiment is "Carpe
                 Diem." Anyone know what that means?

                 Carpe Diem... seize the day.

                 Very good, Mr._?


                 Seize the day while you're young, see
                 that you make use of your time.  Why does
                 the poet write these lines?

                                A STUDENT
                 Because he's in a hurry?

                 Because we're food for worms, lads!
                 Because we're only going to experience a
                 limited number of springs, summers, and
                 falls.  One day, hard as it is to
                 believe, each and every one of us is
                 going to stop breathing, turn cold, and
                 die!  Stand up and peruse the faces of
                 the boys who attended this school sixty
                 or seventy years ago.  Don't be timid, go
                 look at them.

        The boys get up.  Todd, Neil, Knox, Meeks, etc. go over to
        the class pictures that line the honor room walls.

        ANGLES ON VARIOUS PICTURES ON THE WALLS.  Faces of young men
        stare at us from out of the past.

                 They're not that different than any of
                 you, are they?  There's hope in their
                 eyes, just like in yours.  They believe
                 themselves destined for wonderful things,
                 just like many of you.  Well, where are
                 those smiles now, boys?  What of that

        THE BOYS are staring at the pictures, sobered by what Keating
        is saying.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Did most of them not wait until it was
                 too late before making their lives into
                 even one iota of what they were capable?
                 In chasing the almighty deity of success
                 did they not squander their boyhood
                 dreams? Most of those gentlemen are
                 fertilizing daffodils!  However, if you
                 get very close, boys, you can hear them
                 whisper.  Go ahead, lean in.  near it?
                        (loud whisper)
                 'Carpe Diem, lads.  Seize the day.  Make
                 your lives extraordinary. -

                 Todd, Neil, Knox, Charlie, Cameron,
                 Meeks, Pitts all stare into the pictures
                 on the wall.  All are lost in thought.

19      EXT. THE WELTON CAMPUS - DAY                                   19

        The class files out of the honor room.  Todd, Neil, Knox,
        Charlie, Cameron, Necks, and Pitts walk together, books in
        hand.  All thinking about what just happened in class.


                 But different.

                 Spooky if you ask me.

                 You think he'll test us on that stuff?

                 Oh come on, Cameron, don't you get


                 How about a trig study group?  Right
                 after dinner.

                                VARIOUS BOYS
                 Good by me.  Sure.  Great.

                 I can't make it.  I got a sign-out to
                 have dinner at the Danburrys' house.

                 Who are the Danburrys?

                 Big alum,. How'd you pull that?

                 They're friends of my dad.  Probably in
                 their nineties or something.

                 Listen, anything's, better than mystery

                 I'll second that.

        The group disperses.  Neil finds himself walking near Todd
        who has been silent through this whole discussion.

                 Want to come to the study group?

                 Thanks but  I'd better do history.

20      INT. TODD AND NEIL'S DORM ROOM - LATE AFTERNOON                20

        Todd enters alone.  He puts down his books and sits at his
        desk.  Flipping through the stack of books in front of him, he
        sighs at the work load that is piling up.

        Todd takes out his notebook and opens his history book.  He
        stares at his notebook for a moment, then writes "SEIZE THE
        DAY" in big letters.  He looks at the words that he's written,
        sighs, tears the page off, then plunges into his homework.

A21     EXT. THE WELTON CAMPUS - DUSK - WIDE SHOT                     A21

        The autumnal colors are muted by the onset of nightfall.  Old
        Dr. Hager drives the school "woody" station wagon out of the


21      EXT./INT. A LARGE MANSION - DUSK                               21

        Knox Overstreet gets out of the woody.  Dr. Hager pulls away.
        Knox walks to the door of the home and is admitted by a maid.
        Knox is amazed by this palatial home.

22      INT. THE DANBURRY MANSION LIBRARY - DUSK                       22

        JOE DANBURRY is a sharp looking man of about 40, well
        dressed, friendly.  His wife, an attractive blonde about the
        same age, sits beside him.

                                JOE DANBURRY
                 Knox, come in.  Joe Danburry.  This is
                 my wife, Janette.

                 Nice to meet you.

                                MRS. DANBURRY
                 You're the spitting image of your
                 father. How is he?

                 Great.  Just did a big case for GM.

                                JOE DANBURRY
                 Ah.  I know where you're headed.  Like
                 father like son, eh?
                        (looking off screen)
                 Ginny.  Come meet Knox.

        GINNY DANBURRY--15, cute, shy, a shock of misplaced hair--

                                MRS. DANBURRY
                 Knox, this is our daughter, Virginia.

                 Ginny, mom.

        Knox shakes her hand.  His "hello" is polite.  Her "hi" is

        CHET DANBURRY--a tall jock of a guy a couple of years older
        than Knox--enters.  With him is a lovely teenage brunette,
        CHRIS NOEL, in a short tennis dress.  Soft glowing eyes,
        athletic figure, this girl is stunning.

                 Dad, can I take the Buick?

                                JOE DANBURRY
                 What's wrong with your car?

                                MRS. DANBURRY
                 Chet, where are your manners?  Knox,
                 this is my son Chet and his girlfriend
                 Chris Noel.  This is Knox Overstreet.
                 Excuse me while I check on dinner.


        Knox shakes Chet's hand.  Knox is THUNDERSTRUCK by Chris.
        Chris offers Knox her hand and a smile.  Knox shakes her hand1
        his mouth practically hanging open.

                 Pleased to meet you.

                 The pleasure is mine.

                 Come on, Dad, why is this always a big

                                JOE DANBURRY
                 Because I bought you a sports car and
                 suddenly you want my car all the time.

                 Chris' mom feels safer when we're in a
                 bigger car.  Right, Chris?

        Chet shoots her a wicked smile.  Chris blushes.

                 It's all right, Chet.

                 It's not all right.  Come on, Dad

        Joe Danburry walks out of the room.  Chet follows him.

                                CHET (CONT'D)
                 Come on, Dad.

        Knox, Ginny, and Chris remain in the room.  Knox smiles at

                 So, uh, where are you in school?

                 Ridgeway High.  How's Henley Hall, Gin?


                        (to Knox)
                 That's your sister school, right?

                 Sort of.

                        (to Ginny)
                 You going out for the Henley Hall play?
                        (to Knox)
                 They're doing "A Midsummer Night's


                 How did you meet Chet?
                        (both girls look at him)
                 I mean...   Er...

                 He plays on the Ridgeway football team
                 and I'm a cheerleader.  He used to go to
                 Welton but he flunked out.
                        (to Ginny)
                 You should do it, Gin.  You'd be great.

        Ginny looks down, shyly.  Chet comes to the door.

                 Chris.  We got it.  Let's go.

                 Nice meeting you, Knox.  Bye, Gin.

                        (dying inside)
                 Nice meeting you.  Chris.

        Chris and Chet exit.  Through the window, we see Chet and
        Chris walk out and put their arms around each other.

                        (confiding to Knox)
        Chet just wants the Buick so they can go parking.


        Outside, Chris and Chet get in the Buick and kiss.  Knox
        stares with envy.

                 something wrong?


23      EXT. DANBURRY HOUSE - DUSK                                     23

        Chet and Chris drive off.

24      INT. THS JUNIOR CLASS LOUNGE - NIGHT                           24

        The dorm is quiet.  Neil, Cameron, Weeks, Charlie and Pitts
        are gathered studying math.  As they do, Pitts works to
        assemble a small crystal radio.  Todd is in his room, studying
        alone.  Knox, looking shell-shocked, shuffles into the lobby.

                 How was dinner?

                 Terrible.  Awful!  I met the most
                 beautiful girl I've ever seen in my life!

                 Are you crazy? What's wrong with that?

                 She's practically engaged to Chet
                 Danburry.  Mr. Mondo Jocko himself.

                 Too bad.

                 It's not too bad.  It's a tragedy! Why
                 does she have to be in love with a jerk?!

                 All the good ones go for jerks, you know
                 that.  Forget her.  Take out your trig
                 book and figure out problem twelve.

                 I can't just forget her, Pitts.  And I
                 certainly can't think about math!

                 Sure you can.  You're off on a tangent--
                 so you're halfway into trig already

                 Duh, Meeks!

                 I thought it was clever.

                        (sitting down)
                 You really think I should forget her?

                 You have another choice.

        Knox drops to his knee like he is proposing.

                 Only you, Pittsie.

        Pitts pushes Knox away.  Knox sits back down but despair is
        beginning to wash over him.

25/26   OMIT                                                        25/26

26A     EXT: WELTON CAMPUS - MORNING                                  26A

        The Welton bagpiper marches on the lawn, practicing. Students
        emerge from their dorms and head to breakfast.

27      INT. KEATING'S ENGLISH CLASS - DAY                             27

        The lights are out and shades are drawn.  Keating sits in a
        chair beside the teacher's desk.  He looks solemn.  All is

                        (soft and soothing voice)
                 Boys, quietly open your texts to page

        The boys follow instructions.  Keating reads the following in
        a tone of quiet reverence.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Little Boy Blue, by Eugene Field:
                 The little toy dog is covered with dust,
                 But sturdy and staunch he stands.
                 And the little toy soldier is red with rust,
                 And his musket moulds in his hands;
                 Time was when the little toy dog was new,
                 And the soldier was passing fair;
                 And that was the time when our Little Boy Blue,
                 Kissed them and put them there.
                 'Now don't you go till I come,' he said,
                 'And don't you make any noise!'
                 So toddling off to his trundle bed
                 He dreampt of pretty toys;
                 And as he was dreaming, an angel song,
                 Awakened our Little Boy Blue--
                 Oh the years are many, the years are
                 But the little toy friends are true.
                 Ay, faithful to Little Boy Blue they stand,
        Each in the same old place--
                 Awaiting the touch of a little hand,
                 The smile of a little face.
                 And they wonder, as waiting the long years thru,
                 In the dust of that little chair,
                 What has become of our Little Boy Blue,
                 Since he kissed them and put them there.

        Keating is a masterful reader.  With his marvelous voice, he
        has milked this sentimental poem for everything it is worth.
        Many of the boys are on the verge of tears.  Suddenly Keating

                                KEATING (CONT'D)

        The students jump halfway out of their seats.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Treacle!  Mawkish treacle!  Rip it out
                 of your books.  Rip out the entire page!
                 I want this sentimental rubbish in the
                 trash where it belongs!

        He marches down the aisles with the trash can and waits for
        each boy to deposit the page from his textbook.  The boys,
        having been led down the sentimental path, cannot help but
        laugh at this sudden change of mood.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Make a clean tear.  I want nothing left
                 of it!  Eugene Field!  Disgraceful.

27A     INT.MCALLISTER'S CLAS5RDOM - DAY                              27A

        Mr. McAllister, the Scottish Latin teacher, exits his room
        and walks across the hall to Keating's classroom.  He peeks in
        the door window and sees boys ripping pages out of their
        books.  Alarmed, McAllister opens the door and enters
        Keating's room.

27B     INT. KEATING'S CLASSROOM - SAME                               27B

        McAllister is about to reprimand the boys when suddenly he
        sees Keating.

                 What the...  Sorry, I didn't think you
                 were in here, Mr. Keating.

        Baffled and embarrassed, McAllister exits.  Keating strides
        back to the front of the room, Flits the trash can on the
        floor, and jumps into it.  He stomps the trash a few times,
        then kicks the can away.

                 This is battle, boys.  War!  You are
                 souls at a critical juncture.  Either you
                 will succumb to the will of hoi polloi
                 and the fruit will die on the vine--or
                 you will triumph as individuals.  It may
                 be a coincidence that part of my duties
                 are to teach you about Romanticism, but
                 let me assure you that I take the task
                 quite seriously.  You will learn what
                 this school wants you to learn in my
                 class, but if I do my job properly, you
                 will also learn a great deal more.  You
                 will learn to savor language and words
                 because they are the stepping stones to
                 everything you might endeavor to do in
                 life and do well.  A moment ago I used
                 the term 'hoi polloi.'  Who knows what it
                 means?  Come on, Overstreet, you twirp.
                 Anderson, are you a man or a boil?

        More laughter.  All eyes are on Todd.  He visibly tenses all
        over.  He cannot bring himself to speak.  He shakes his head
        jerkily "no.'.  Meeks raises his hands and speaks:

                 The hoi polloi.  Doesn't it mean the

                 Precisely, Meeks. Greek for the herd.
                 However, be warned that, when you say
                 "the hoi polloi" you are actually saying
                 the the herd.  Indicating that you too
                 are "hoi polloi."

        Keating grins wryly.  Meeks smiles.  More chuckles.  Keating
        paces to the back of the room.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Now, many will argue that nineteenth--
                 century literature has nothing to do with
                 business school or medical school.  They
                 think we should I read our Field and
                 Pipple, learn our rhyme and meter, and
                 quietly go about it our business of
                 achieving other ambitions.

        He slams his hand on the wall behind him.  The wall booms
        like a drum.  The boys jump and turn around.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                        (defiant whisper)
                 Well, I say drivel!  One reads poetry
                 because he is a member of the human race
                 and the human race is filled with
                 passion!  Medicine, Law, Banking-these
                 are necessary to sustain life-but poetry,
                 romance, love, beauty!  These are what we
                 stay alive for.  I read from Whitman.
                 Oh me, Oh life of the questions of these
                 recurring.  OF the endless trains of the
                 faithless of cities filled with the
                 foolish... skipping... What good amid these O
                 me, O life?  Answer: That you are here-
                 That life exists and identity That the
                 powerful play goes on, and you may
                 contribute a verse."

        Keating pauses.  The class sits, taking this in.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                        (awestruck tone)
                 "That the powerful play goes on, and you
                 may contribute a verse."  Incredible.
        Poetry is rapture, lads.  Without it we are doomed.
        Keating waits a long moment.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)

                 What will your verse be?

        PITTS, and TODD as they contemplate this question.  Softly,
        Keating breaks the mood:

                                KEATING (CONT'D)

                 Let's open our textbooks to page sixty
                 and learn about Wordsworth notion of

25      INT. THE WELTON DINING ROOM - DAY                              25

        On the dais in the front of the room is the teacher's dining
        table.  Below them are the students' tables.  Mr. McAllister
        sits to Keating's right.

                 Quite an interesting class you had
                 today, Mr. Keating.

                 Sorry if I shocked you.

                 No need to apologize.  It was quite
                 fascinating, misguided though it was.

                 You heard it all?

                 You're hardly a Trappist monk.

        McAllister smiles.  So does Keating.

                                McALLISTER (CONT'D)
                 You take a big risk encouraging them to
                 be artists, John.  When they realize
                 they're not  Rembrants or Shakespeares or
                 Picassos, they'll hate you for it.

                 Not artists, George, free thinkers.  And
                 I hardly pegged you as a cynic.

                 A cynic?  A realist!  Show me the heart
                 unfettered by foolish dreams and I'll
                 show you a happy man.

        He chews a bite.

                                McALLISTER (CONT'D)
                 But I will enjoy listening to your

        Keating grins with amusement


        Todd, Knox, Charlie, Cameron, Pitts, and Meeks sit at a table
        eating.  Neil enters and joins them.

                 I found his senior annual in the

        Neil opens the annual and reads.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 Captain of the soccer team, editor of
                 the annual, Cambridge bound, Man most
                 likely to do anything, Thigh man, Dead
                 Poets Society.

        Hands grab the old annual away from Neil.

                 Thigh man?  Mr. "K" was a hell raiser.

                 What is the Dead Poets Society?

                 Any group pictures in the annual?

                 Nothing.  No mention of it.


        Mr. Nolan approaches the boys' table.  Under the table,
        Cameron insistently hands the annual to Todd.  Todd looks at
        Cameron, then takes it.

        Enjoying your classes, Mr. Perry?

                 Yes sir.  Very much.

                 And our Mr. Keating.  Finding him
                 interesting, boys?

                 Yes sir.  We were just talking about

                 Good.  We're very excited about him.  He
                 was a Rhodes Scholar, you know.

        Nolan exits.  Todd looks at the annual that he hides in his
        lap under the table, then continues eating.

29      EXT. THE CAMPUS - LATER                                        29

        Keating walks across the school lawn wearing his sport coat
        and a scarf, carrying his books.  Pitts, Neil, Cameron, Knox,
        Charlie, Meeks and Todd approach him.

                 Mr. Keating? Sir? Oh Captain My Captain.
                        (Keating stops)
                 What was the Dead Poets Society?

                 Ah, so you boy's have been snooping.

                 I was just looking in an old annual and...

                 Nothing wrong with research.

        The boys wait for more.

                 But what was it?

        Keating checks around to be sure they are unwatched.

                 The Dead Poets was a secret
                 organization. I don't know how the
                 present administration would look upon it
                 but I doubt the reaction would be
                 favorable. Can you keep a secret?

        An instant sea of nods.

                 The Dead Poets Society was dedicating to
                 sucking the marrow out of life.  That
                 phrase is by Thoreau and was invoked at
                 every meeting.  A small group of us would
                 meet at a cave and there we would take
                 turns reading Shelley, Thoreau, Whitman,
                 our own verse-any number of poets-and, in
                 the enchantment of the moment, let them
                 work their magic on us.

                 You mean it was a bunch of guys sitting
                 around reading poetry?

                 Both sexes participated, Mr. Overstreet.
                 And, believe me, we did not simply read,
                 we let it drip from our tongues like
                 honey.  Women swooned, spirits soared...
                 Gods were created, gentlemen.

        The boys think a minute.

                 What did the name mean.  Did you only
                 read dead poets.

                 All poetry was acceptable.  The name
                 simply referred to the fact, that to join
                 the organization, you had to be dead.


                 Full membership required a lifetime of
                 apprenticeship.  The living were simply
                 pledges.  Alas, even I am still a lowly

        The boys don't quite know what to say.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 The last meeting must have been 25 years
                 ago.  Hasn't been another since.

        Keating exits.  The boys stand watching.  Neil turns to them.

                 I say we go tonight.  Everybody in?

                 Where is this cave he's talking about?

                 Beyond the stream.  I think I know.

                 That's miles.

                 Sounds boring to me.

                 Don't come.

                 You know how many demerits we're

                 So don't goddam come!  Please.

                 All I'm saying is we have to be careful.
                 We can't get caught.

                 Well, no shit, Sherlock

                 Who's in?

                 I'm in.

        Neil looks at Knox, Pitts, and Weeks.


                 Oh come on, Pitts...

                 His grades are hurting, Charlie.

                 Then you can help him.

                 What is this, a midnight study group?

                 Forget it, Pitts, you're coming.  Meeks,
                 your grades hurting too?


                 All right.  I'll try anything once.

                 Except sex.

        More laughter.  Meeks blushes.

                 I'm in as long as we're careful.


                 I don't know.  I don't get it.

                 Come on.  It'll help you get Chris.

                 It will?  How do you figure?

                 Women swoon!

                 But why?

        The group walk off.  Knox holds, then follows,

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 Why do they swoon?!  Charlie, tell me
                 why they swoon!

        Knox moves off after the others.  Todd remains behind. No one
        asked Todd and he moves off by himself.

30      INT. THE STUDY HALL - LATE AFTERNOON                           30

        Students study.  Neil sits near Todd.

                        (hushed voice)
                 Listen, I'm inviting you.  You can't
                 expect everybody to think of you all the
                 time.  Nobody knows you.


                 Thanks but it's not a question of that.

                 What is it then?

                 I... I just don't want to come.

                 But why?  Don't you understand what
                 Keating is saying?  Don't you want to do
                 something about it?

                 Yes.  But

                 Put what?  Goddamn it, tell me.

                 I don't want to read.


                 Keating said everybody took turns
                 reading.  I don't want to do it.

                 God, you really have a problem, don't
                 you?  How can it hurt you to read?  I
                 mean isn't that what this is all about?
                 Expressing yourself?

31      INT. THE DORM - LATE NIGHT                                     31

        Old Dr. Hager, the resident dorm marshal, putters in his
        room, door ajar, making tea.  Neil, Charlie, Knox, Meeks,
        Pitts, Cameron, and Todd sneak silently past his door and out.

32      EXT. THE WELTON CAMPUS - NIGHT                                 32

        The school hunting dog comes up and growls at the boys. Pitts
        slips the dog a piece of food and it goes away.

33      EXT. THE SCHOOL GROUNDS - NIGHT                                33

        The stars are out and the wind is blowing.  A SERIES of SHOTS
        show the boys crossing the campus.  They reach a stone wall
        with an old iron gate that is chained shut.  The boys squeeze
        through the gate and disappear into the woods beyond.

34      EXT. THE WELTON WOODS AND STREAM - NIGHT                       34

        The boys make their way through the eerie forest searching
        for the cave.  They reach the bank of the stream and begin
        looking for an appropriate spot amongst the tree roots and
        erosion.  Charlie suddenly looms out of the cave entrance.

                 Yaa, I'm a dead poet!

                        (then recovering)
                 Eat it, Dalton!

                 This is it.

                                                      SHORT DISSOLVE TO:

34A     INT. THE CAVE - A BIT LATER                                   34A

        A newly lit fire comes to life  The boys huddle around the

                 I hereby reconvene the Welton Chapter of
                 the Dead Poets Society.  These meetings
                 will be conducted by myself and by the
                 rest of the new initiates now present.
                 Todd Anderson, because he prefers not to
                 read, will keep minutes of the meetings.

        Todd is unhappy with this role but he tries not to show it.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 I will now read the traditional opening
                 message from society member Henry David

        Neil opens Keating's copy of Thoreau's Walden, and reads.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 I went to the woods because I wanted to
                 live deliberately."
                        (skips thru the text)
                 I wanted to live deep and suck out all
                 the marrow of life!"

                 All right.  I'll second that.

                 To put the rout all that was not life.
                        (skips thru the text)
                 And not, when I came to die, discover
                 that I had not lived.  Pledge Overstreet.

        Knox steps up.  Neil hands him Walden.  Knox flips thru the
        book until he finds another underlined passage.  He reads.

                 The millions are awake enough for
                 Physical labor; but only one in a million
                 is awake enough for effective
                 intellectual exertion, only one in a
                 hundred millions to a poetic or divine
                 life.  To be awake is to be alive.

                 Hey, this is great.

        Knox hands the bock to Cameron.  Cameron reads.

                 If one advances confidently in the
                 direction of his dreams and endeavors to
                 live the life which he has imagined, he
                 will meet with a success unexpected in
                 common hours.

                 Yes!  I want success with Chris!

        Cameron hands the book to Todd.  Todd holds the book, frozen.
        Before the others notice Todd's fear, Neil takes the book from
        Todd and hands it to Meeks.

                 If you have built castles in the air,
                 your work need not be lost.  That is
                 where they should be.  Now put
                 foundations under them.

                 God, I want to do everything!  I'm going
                 to explode.

        Neil looks imbued with the desire to break out of his mold.
        He slams the palms of his hands together with an expression of
        determination.  Charlie opens a book he brought and flips
        through it.

                 Listen to this: Out of the night that
                 covers me, Black as the Pit from pole to
                 pole, I thank whatever gods may be for my
                 unconquerable soul!"

        PULL BACK from this small band of boys standing huddled in
        the night.  Something is swirling their heads, something alive
        and exciting like the wind and the swaying trees that surround
        them.  Charlie raises his hands in the air.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)
                 I here and now commit myself to daring!

                                                             DISSOLVE TO:

35      INT. KEATING'S CLASSROOM - DAY                                 35

                 So avoid using the word 'very' because
                 it's lazy.  A man is not very tired, he
                 is exhausted.  Don't use very sad, use
                 morose.  Language was invented for one
                 reason, boys--to woo women--and, in that
                 endeavor, laziness will not do.  It also
                 won't do in your essays.

        The class laughs appreciatively.  Keating closes his book,
        then walks over and raises a map that covers the blackboard in
        the front of the room.  On the board is a quote, which Keating
        reads aloud:

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Creeds and schools in abeyance   I
                 permit to speak at every hazard, Nature
                 without check, with original energy. --
                 Walt Whitman.  Ah, but the difficulty of
                 ignoring those creeds and schools,
                 conditioned as we are by our parents, our
                 traditions, by the modern age.  How do
                 we, like Whitman, permit our own true
                 natures to speak?  How do we strip
                 ourselves of prejudices, habits,
                 influences?  The answer, my dear lads, is
                 that we must constantly endeavor to find
                 a new point of view.

        He leaps onto his desk.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Why do I stand here?  To feel taller
                 than you?  I stand on my desk to remind
                 myself that we must constantly force
                 ourselves to look at things differently.
                 The world looks different from up here.
                 If you don't believe it, stand up here
                 and try it.  All of you.  Take turns.

        Keating jumps off.  The boys, with the notable exception of
        Todd, go to the front of the room and a few at a time take
        turns standing on Keating's desk.  As they do, Keating strolls
        up and down the aisles.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Try never to think about anything the
                 same way twice.  If you're sure about
                 something, force yourself to think about
                 it another way, even if you know it's
                 wrong or silly.  When you read, don't
                 consider only what the author thinks, but
                 take the time to consider what you think.
                 You must strive to find your own voice,
                 boys, and the longer you wait to begin,
                 the less likely you are to find it at
                 all.  Thoreau said, "Most men lead lives
                 of quiet desperation."  I ask, why be
                 resigned to that?  Risk walking new
                 ground.  Now.  A flame in your hearts
                 could change the world, lads.  Nurture

        Keating goes to the door.  He locks at the class, then
        flashes the room lights on and off over and over.  He makes a
        noise like crashing thunder.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 In addition to your essays, I want you
                 each to write a poem--something your own
                 to be delivered aloud in class.  See
                 you Monday.

        He exits.  Momentarily, he pops his head back in.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                        (impish grin)
                 And don't think I don't know this
                 assignment scares you to death, Mr.
                 Anderson, you mole.

        Keating holds out his hands and pretends he is sending
        lightning bolts at Todd.  The class laughs.  Todd forces a
        hint of a smile.


        Pitts and Meeks climb up the inside of the bell tower that
        sits atop the Welton Chapel.  They affix Pitts' crystal radio
        antenna to the chapel cross.  momentarily, they tune in a
        fuzzy rock 'n roll station.

                 Radio Free America.

        They try to tune in the music but it soon dissolves into
        static.  They jiggle the radio in frustration.

36                                                                     36

        Some of the Welton students run on the green, kicking soccer

37                                                                     37

        Down at the lake, the Welton crew team is practicing.  Mr.
        Nolan sits in a rowboat, smoking a pipe, watching.

38                                                                     38

        Knox rides down a wooded lane on his bike.  He comes to
        RIDGEWAY HIGH SCHOOL.  Beyond a fence, uniformed boys practice
        football.  Not far from them, cheerleaders practice.  Knox
        stops.  He sees:

        Among the cheerleaders is Chris.  She laughs as she practices
        the cheers with the other girls.  Knox watches her with
        intense longing in his eyes.

        Chet Danburry catches a pass in front of Chris, struts for
        her amusement, then moves on.  Chris laughs.

        Knox gets back on his bike and pedals away

39      INT. TODD AND NEIL'S ROOM - AFTERNOON                          39

        Todd sits at his bed, a pad of paper beside him.  He starts
        to write something, scratches it out, then covers his face in
        frustration.  The door opens.  Neil enters, looking like he's
        just seen God.  He lets his books fall to his desk.

                 I've found it.

                 Found what?

                 What I want to do!  Right now. What is
                 really inside of me.

        He hands Todd a piece of paper.  Todd reads it.

                 A Midsummer Night's Dream. What is it?

                 A play, dummy.

                 I know that.  What's it got to do with

                 They're putting it on at Henley Hall.
                 See, open try-outs.


                 So I'm gonna act!  Ever since I can
                 remember I've wanted to try it.  Last
                 summer I even tried to go to summer stock
                 auditions but of course my father
                 wouldn't let me.

                 And now he will?

                 Hell no, but that's not the point.  The
                 point is for the first time in my whole
                 goddamned life, I know what I want, and
                 for the first time I'm gonna do it
                 whether my father wants me to or not!
                 Carpe diem, goddamn it!

        Neil picks up the play and reads a coupe of lines aloud. They
        delight him.  He clenches his fists in the air with joy.

                 Neil, how are you gonna be in a play if
                 your father won't let you?

                 First I gotta get the part, then I'll
                 worry about that.

                 Won't he kill you if you don't let him
                 know you're auditioning?

                 As far as I'm concerned, he won't have
                 to know about any of it.

                 Come on, that's impossible.

                 Horseshit.  Nothing's impossible.

                 Why don't you ask him first?  Maybe
                 he'll say yes.

                 That's a laugh.  If I don't ask, at
                 least I won't be disobeying him.

                 But if he said no before then...

                 Jesus Christ, whose side are you on?  I
                 haven't even gotten the part yet.  Can't
                 I enjoy the idea even for a little while?

        Todd turns back to his work.  Neil sits on the bed and starts
        reading the play.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 By the way, there's a meeting this
                 afternoon.  You coming?

                 I guess.

        Neil puts down his play and looks at Todd.

                 None of what Mr. Keating has to say
                 means shit to you, does it?

                 What is that supposed to mean?

                 Being in the club means being stirred up
                 by things.  You look about as stirred up
                 as a cesspool.

                 You want me out...  is that what you're

                 No, I want you in.  But being in means
                 you gotta do something.  Not just say
                 you're in.

                        (turns angrily)
                 Listen Neil, I appreciate your interest
                 in me but I'm not like you.  When you say
                 things, people pay attention.  People
                 follow you.  I'm not like that.

                 Why not?  Don't you think you could be?

                 No!  I don't know,  I'll probably never
                 know.  The point is, there's nothing you
                 can do about it so butt out, all right?
                 I can take care of myself just fine.  All

                 Er  No.

                 No?  What do you mean 'no'?

                        (shrugs matter-of-factly)

        Neil opens his play.  Todd waits for Neil to relent.  He

40      OMIT                                                           40

A41     EXT. CAVE - AFTERNOON                                         A41

        The boys enter the cave.

41      INT. THE CAVE - AFTERNOON                                      41

        It is a clear, crisp fall afternoon.  Charlie, Knox, Todd,
        Necks, Neil, Cameron, and Pitts sit around.  Neil recites from

                 "I went to the woods because I wished to
                 live deliberately.  I wanted to live deep
                 and suck out all the marrow of life."

                                KNOX (moans)
                 God, I want to suck all the marrow out
                 of Chris.  I'm so in love, I feel like
                 I'm going to die!

                 You know what the dead poets would say:
                 Gather ye rosebuds while ye may...

                 But she's in love with: the moron son of
                 my father's best friend.  What would the
                 dead poets say about that?

        Knox walks away from the group.  Despair is washing over him.

                 I feel like I've never been alive.  For
                 years I've been risking nothing.  I have
                 no idea what I am or what I want to do!
                 Neil, you know you want to act.  Knox
                 wants Chris.

                 Needs Chris!  Must have Chris!

                 Meeks, you're the brain here.  What do
                 the dead poets say about somebody like

                 The romantics were passionate
                 experimenters, Charles.  They dabbled in
                 many things before settling, if ever.

                 There aren't too many places to be an
                 experimenter at Welton, Meeks.

        Charlie paces a moment, then gets an idea.  He addresses the

                 I hereby declare this the Charles Dalton
                 Cave for Passionate Experimentation.  In
                 the future, anyone wishing entry must
                 have permission from me.

                 Wait a minute, Charlie. This should
                 belong to the club.

                 It should, but I found it and now I
                 claim it.  carpe cavern, guys.  Seize the

        Charlie grins.  The boys look at each other and shake their
        heads.  Neil heads out.

                 I gotta get to the tryouts.  Wish me

                 Good luck.

        Neil exits.  Charlie finds a rock and begins carving his name
        on a wall of the cave.  Pitts shakes his head.

42      EXT. SOCCER FIELD - AFTERNOON                                  42

        Gusts of wind blow across the field.  About 50 boys stand in
        their sweats, moving around, trying to keep warm.  Among them
        are Todd, Charlie, Pitts, and Knox who is in a state of
        lovesick despair.  Keating walks up, carrying same soccer
        balls under one arm and a case under the other.

                 Say, look who's the soccer instructor.

                 Here here, there are quite a few of us
                 so we have to be quiet if we're to get
                 anything accomplished.  Who has the roll?

                                SENIOR STUDENT
                 I do, sir.

                                SENIOR STUDENT
        Keating takes the three-page roll and examines it.

                 Answer "present." please.  Chapman?

                                STUDENT (CHAPMAN)

                 Perry?  (no answer)  Neil Perry?

        Keating glances at Todd.  Todd doesn't know what to say.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Hmmmm.  Watson?  (no answer)  Richard
                 Watson? Absent too, eh?

                 Watson's sick, sir.

                 Hmm.  Sick indeed.  I suppose I should
                 give Watson demerits.  But if I give
                 Watson demerits, I will also have to give
                 Perry demerits  and I like Perry.

        He crumples the roll up and tosses it away.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Boys, you don't have to be here if you
                 don't want to.  Anyone who wants to play,
                 follow me.

        Keating marches off.  Astonished and delighted by this
        capriciousness, most of the boys excitedly follow.

43      NEW ANGLE - FAR SOCCER FIELD - LATER                           43

        Most of the boys from earlier sit on the ground.  Keating
        stands before them.

                 Devotees may argue that one game or
                 sport is inherently better than another.
                 For me the most important thing in all
                 sport is the way other human beings can
                 push us to excel.  Plato, a gifted man
                 like myself, said, "Only the contest made
                 me a poet, a sophist, an orator."  Each
                 person take a slip of paper and line up
                 single file.

        He passes out slips of paper to the curious students.

44      EXT. THE SOCCER FIELD - LATER                                  44

        The boys form a long line.  Todd stands listlessly at the
        rear.  Ten feet in front of the boy at the head of the line, a
        soccer ball rests on the ground.

                 You know what to do... Now go!

        McAllister walks past the soccer field.  He watches in
        fascination as the boy at the head of the line steps out and
        reads loudly from his slip of paper.

                                FIRST BOY
                 Oh to struggle against great odds, To
                 meet enemies undaunted!

        He runs and kicks the ball at the goal, missing.  Keating
        puts down another ball, then puts a record on a portable
        record player.  Classical music starts.  The second boy, Knox,
        steps out.

                 Rhythm, boy!  Rhythm is important.

                                SECOND BOY (KNOX)
                 To be entirely alone with them, to find
                 out how much one can stand!

        Knox too runs and kicks the ball. Just before he smashes it
        with his foot, he yells:  "CHET!" ball. Keating puts down
        another ball

                                THIRD BOY (MEEKS)
                 To look strife, torture, prison, popular
                 odium face to face!

        Meeks runs and kicks the ball with great intent.  Next,
        Charlie steps out and reads.

                 To indeed be a God!

        With determination, Charlie kicks the ball through the goal.
        McAllister smiles and walks on.

45      OMIT                                                           45

46      INT. NEIL AND TODD'S ROOM - NIGHT                              46

        Todd sits at his desk, a half-composed poem before him. He
        adds a line, then breaks the pencil in frustration.  He paces,
        sighs, then picks up another pencil and tries to again.

47      INT. THE DORM HALLWAY - SAME                                   47

        Neil enters, looking stunned.

                 I got it.  Hey, everybody, I got the
                 part!  I'm going to play Puck.  Hey, I'm

                                VOICE FROM A ROOM
                 Puck you!  Pipe down.

                                CHARLIE AND OTHERS
                 All right, Neil.  Congratulations!

48      INT. NEIL AND TODD'S ROOM - NIGHT                              45

        Neil enters and closes the door.  Incredibly excited, he
        pulls out an old typewriter and begins to type.  Todd watches.

                 Neil, how are you gonna do this?

                 Sssh.  That's what I'm taking care of.
                 They need a letter of permission.

                 From you?

                 From my father and Nolan.

                 Neil, you're not gonna...

                 Quiet.  I have to think.

        Neil mumbles lines from the play, giggles to himself, then
        keeps typing.  Todd shakes his head in disbelief.

49      INT. KEATING'S CLASSROOM - DAY                                 49

        Knox stands before class reading the poem he wrote.

                 I see a sweetness in her smile
                 Bright light shines from her eyes
                 But life is complete: contentment mine
                 Just knowing that she--

        Knox stops.  He lowers his paper.

                 I'm sorry.  It's stupid.

        Knox walks back to his seat.

                 It's fine, Knox.  Good effort.
                        (to the class)
                 What Knox has done demonstrates an
                 important point, not only in writing
                 poetry, but in every endeavor.  That is,
                 deal with the important things in life
                 love, beauty, truth, justice.

        Keating paces.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 And don't limit poetry to the word.
                 Poetry can be found in a work of art,
                 music, a photograph, in the way a meal is
                 prepared--anything with the stuff of
                 revelation in it.  It can exist in the
                 most everyday things but it must never,
                 never be ordinary  By all means, write
                 about the sky or a girl's smile but when
                 you do, let your poetry conjure up
                 salvation day, doomsday, any day, I don't
                 care, as long as it enlightens us,
                 thrills us and--if it's inspired--makes
                 us feel a bit immortal.

                 Oh, Captain, My Captain. Is there poetry
                 in math?

        Chuckles from the class.

                 Absolutely, Mr. Dalton, there is
                 elegance in mathematics.  If everyone
                 wrote poetry, the planet would starve,
                 for God's sake.  But there must be
                 poetry--and we must stop to notice it--in
                 even the simplest acts of living, or we
                 will have wasted the truly wonderful
                 opportunity that life as human beings
                 offers us.  That said, who wants to
                 recite next?  Come on.  I'll get to
                 everyone eventually.

        Keating looks around.  No one volunteers.  Keating grins.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Look at Mr. Anderson.  In such agony.
                 Step up, lad, and let's put you out of
                 your misery.

        All eyes are on Todd.  He is dying inside.  He stands and
        walks slowly to the front of the class like a condemned man on
        his way to his execution.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Todd, have you prepared your poem?

        Todd shakes his head no.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Mr. Anderson believes that everything he
                 has inside of him is worthless and
                 embarrassing.  Correct, Todd?  Isn't that
                 your fear?

        Todd nods jerkedly yes.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Then today you will see that what is
                 inside of you is worth a great deal.

        Keating strides to the blackboard.  Rapidly, he writes:

        Walt Whitman

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 A yawp, for those who don't know, is a
                 loud cry or yell.  Todd, I would like you
                 to give us a demonstration of a barbaric

                        (barely audible)
                 A yawp?

                 A barbaric yawp.

        Keating pauses, then suddenly moves fiercely at Todd.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Good god, boy! Yell!


                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Again!  Louder!




                 All right!  Very good!  There's a
                 barbarian in there after all!

        Keating claps.  The class claps too.  Todd, red-faced, swells
        a bit.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Todd, there's a picture of Whitman over
                 the door.  What does he remind you Of?
                 Quickly, Anderson, don't think about it.

                 A madman.

                 A madman.  Perhaps he was.  What kind of
                 madman?  Don't think!  Answer.

                 A crazy madman.

                 Use your imagination!  First thing that
                 pops to your mind, even if it's

                 A... A  sweaty-toothed madman.

                 Now there's the poet speaking!  Close
                 your eyes and think of the picture.
                 Describe what you see.  NOW!

                 I... I close my eyes.  His image floats
                 beside me.

                 A sweaty-toothed madman

                 A sweaty-toothed madman with a stare
                 that pounds my brain.

                 Excellent!  Have him act.  Give it

                 His hands reach out and choke me All the
                 time he mumbles slowly.  Truth... Truth is
                 like a blanket that always leaves your
                 feet cold.

        This brings chuckles from the class.  This angers Todd.

                 To hell with them, most about the

        Todd opens his eyes and addresses the class in defiant

                 Stretch it, pull it, it will never cover
                 any of us.  Kick at it, beat at it, it
                 will never be enough-

                 Don't stop!

                        (struggling, but getting it
                 From the moment we enter crying to the
                 moment we leave dying,  It will cover
                 just your head as you wail and cry and

        Todd stands still for a long time.  Both he and the students
        have felt the magic or what has just taken place.  Neil starts
        applauding.  Others join in.  Todd swells and, for the first
        time, there is a hint of confidence in him.  The applause
        stops.  Keating walks to Todd.

                 Don't forget this.

49A     EXT. THE SOCCER FIELD - DAY                                   49A

        A soccer ball careens off a kicking foot.  Beethoven's Ninth
        symphony, fourth movement, "Ode To Joy," blares forth. Keating
        stands on the sidelines beside his portable record player,
        watching the boys play soccer, waving his arms like an
        orchestra conductor.  In front of Keating the boys play soccer
        to this spectacular music.  They run, kick, pass, fall, block,
        head, dribble, take--all to the overpowering chorus of one of
        the most inspirational pieces of music ever written.

50A     EXT DEAD POETS CAVE - AFTERNOON                               50A

        Boys enter the cave.

50      INT. DEAD POETS CAVE - AFTERNOON                               50

        Neil hurries in carrying a small, broken statue.  The other
        pledges of the Dead Poets Society are assembled around
        Charlie who sits silently cross-legged before them.  His eyes
        are closed and, in one hand, he holds an old saxophone.

                 Look at this.

                 What is it?

                 The god of the cave.

        The statue has a stake sticking cut of its head with a candle
        stuck in it.  Neil plants the statue in ground and lights the
        candle.  It illuminates a red and blue drummer boy, face
        pitted from exposure, yet noble in its visage.  Charlie, who
        hasn't moved, clears his throat.  All turn to him and settle

                 Gentlemen, "Poetrusic" by Charles

        He blows scattered notes on the saxophone.  Random, blaring,
        they sound like bad John Cage.  Suddenly Charlie stops.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)
                        (trance-like, run-on
                 Laughing, crying, tumbling, mumbling,
                 gotta do more.  Gotta be more

        He plays more notes on the sax, then:

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)
                        (more rapid than before)
                 Chaos screaming, chaos dreaming, crying,
                 flying, gotta be more!!  Gotta be more!!

        Charlie plays a simple but absolutely gorgeous melody.  The
        skeptical looks on the faces of the boys disappear.  As
        Charlie gets lost in the music, so do the others.  The melody
        ends with a long, beautiful, haunting note.

                 Charlie, That was great!  Where did you
                 learn to play like that?

                 My parents made me take clarinet but I
                 hated it.
                        (putting on a mock British
        The sax is more sonorous.

        Knox stands.  He backs away, full of torment and frustration.

                 God, I can't take it anymore!  If I
                 don't have Chris, I'll kill myself.

                 Knox, you gotta calm down.

                 No, I've been calm all my life!  If I
                 don't do something, it's gonna kill me.

                 Where are you going?

                 I'm calling her!

51      INT. THE DORM PHONE ROOM - LATER                               51

        All of the boys stand around.  Knox picks up the phone,
        boldly dials some numbers, then waits.

52      INT. CHRIS' HOUSE - AFTERNOON                                  52

        Chris is in wet hair and a damp towel, but she looks
        stunning.  She enters and answers the phone.



        Knox hears Chris' voice.  He starts to speak, then hangs up
        the phone.

                 She's gonna hate me!  The Danburrys will
                 hate me.  My parents will kill me!

        He looks at the faces of the others.  No one says a word.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 All right, goddamn it, you're right!
                 'Carpe diem' even if it kills me.

        He picks up the phone and dials again.

54      INT. CHRIS~ HOUSE - SAME                                       54

        Again the phone rings.  Again Chris enters and answers.


55      INT. THE DORM - SAME                                           55

                 Hello Chris, this is Knox Overstress.

56      INT. CHRIS' HOUSE - SAME                                       56

                 Knox.  Oh yes, Knox.  I'm glad you


                 You are?
                        (excitedly to his friends)
                 She's glad I called!

58      INT. CHRIS' HOUSE - SAME                                       58

                 I wanted to call you but I didn't have
                 the number.  Chet's parents are going out
                 of town this weekend so Chet's having a
                 party.  Would you like to come?

59      INT. THE DORM - SAME                                           59

                 Well, sure!

60      INT. CHRIS' HOUSE - SAME                                       60

                 Chet's parents don't know about it, so
                 please keep it quiet.  But you can bring
                 someone if you like.

61      INT. DORM - SAME                                               61

                 I'll be there.  The Danburrys.  Friday
                 night.  Thank you, Chris.

        He hangs up the phone.  He is thunderstruck.  He lets out a

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 Can you believe it?  She was gonna call
                 me!  She invited me to a party with her!

                 At Chet Danburry's house.




                 So you really think she means you're
                 going with her?

                 Well hell no, Charlie, but that's not
                 the point.  That's not the point at all!

                 What is the point?

                 The point is she was thinking about me!
                 I've only met her once and already she's
                 thinking about me.  Damn it, it's gonna
                 happen!  I feel it.  She's going to be

        He exits the phone room, his head in a cloud.  The others
        look at each other, not sure what to think.

62      EXT. THE HENDLY HALL AUDITOMUM - DAY                           62

        The buildings at this school are white brick.  Neil parks his
        bicycle and enters the auditorium.

63      INT. THE AUDITORIUM STAGE - LATER                              63

        High school actors are on stage rehearsing Shakespeare's "A
        Midsummer Night's Dream."  Neil stands center stage, playing
        Puck.  He holds a stick with a bell accoutered jester's head
        on one end of it.

                                NEIL (AS PUCK)
                 Yet but three?  Come one more.
                 Two of both kinds makes up four.
                 Here she comes, curst and sad.
                 Cupid is a knavish lad
                 Thus to make poor females mad.

        Enter Ginny Danburry playing Hermia, crawling on stage,
        looking exhausted.  As she starts her lines, the DIRECTOR of
        the play, a woman in her 40s, interrupts.

                 Good, Neil.  I really get the feeling
                 your Puck knows he's in charge.  Remember
                 that he takes great delight in what he's

                        (broadly, boldly impish)
                 Cupid is a knavish lad Thus to make poor
                 females mad!"

                 Excellent.  Continue, Ginny.

        As Ginny re-enters and starts her lines-

                                GINNY (AS HERMIA)
                 Never so weary, never so in woe,
                 Bedabbled with the dew, and torn with
                 briars I can no further crawl, no further

64      EXT. THLE WELTON DORMS - NIGHT                                 64

        Neil rides up on his bike and parks it.  As he starts into
        the dorm, he spots a figure sitting motionless on a wall.


        Neil walks over to get a better look.  It is Todd, sitting in
        the dark without a coat.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 What's going on?

        Todd doesn't answer.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 Todd, what's the matter?

                 It's my birthday.

                 It is?  Happy Birthday.  You get

        Todd is motionless.  Then he points to a box.  Neil looks. In
        the box seems to be the monogrammed desk set that we've seen
        on Todd's desk.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 This is your desk set.
                 I don't get it.

                 They gave me the exact same thing as
                 last year!



        Long pause.

                 Well, maybe they thought you'd need
                 another one.  Maybe they thought...

                 Maybe they don't think at all unless
                 it's about my brother!  His birthday's
                 always a big to-do.
                        (pause: looks at the desk
                 The stupid thing is, I didn't even like
                 the first one.

        He puts the desk set down.

                 Look, Todd, you're obviously under-
                 estimating the value of this desk set.


                 I mean, this is one special gift!  Who
                 would want a football or a baseball bat
                 or a car when they could get a desk set
                 as wonderful as this one!

                 Yeah!  And just look at this ruler!

        They laugh.  A silence falls.

                                TODD (CONT'D)
                 You know what Dad called me when I was
                 growing up?  "Five ninty-eight."  That's
                 what all the chemicals in the human body
                 would be worth if you bottled them raw
                 and sold them.  He told me that was all
                 I'd ever be worth unless I worked every
                 day to improve myself.  "Five ninety-

        Neil shakes his head.

                                TODD (CONT'D)
                 When I was little, I thought all parents
                 automatically loved their kids.  That's
                 what my teachers told me.  That's what I
                 read in the books they gave me.  That's
                 what I believed.  Well, my parents might
                 have loved my brother but they did not
                 love me.

        He takes a deep, anguished breath.  Neil is groping for
        something to say.  Todd walks into the dorm.

65      EXT. A WELTON BRICK COURTYARD - DAY                            65

        The class pours into the courtyard expectantly.  Another
        Keating stunt?  Keating addresses them.

                 People, I am delighted with your
                 progress as reflected in your essays and
                 poems. However, I know the school policy
                 is to encourage study groups and I
                 believe that a dangerous though
                 inevitable element of conformity has been
                 seeping into your work.  Misters Pitts,
                 Cameron, Overstreet, and Chapman line up
                 please over here.

        Keating indicates for the four boys to stand near him.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 On the count of four, begin walking
                 together around the courtyard.  Nothing
                 to think about.  No grade here.  One,
                 two, three, go.

        The boys begin walking.  They go down one side of the
        courtyard, across the back, up the other side, then across the

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 That's the way.  Please continue.

        As the boys walk around the courtyard again, they begin to
        walk together in step.  Soon it becomes like a march,
        producing a one-two-three-four cadence.  Keating begins to

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 There it is  Hear it?
                        (clapping louder in time)
                 One two, one two, one two, one two


        McAllister sits in his empty classroom, reading a book.  He
        sees the commotion in the courtyard and watches.


        The marching boys get into it.  The class joins in clapping.
        Soon the tour boys are marching vigorously to the rhythmic
        clapping of the entire class.

        NEW ANGLE

        Inside his second-story office, Nolan is looking out his
        window at the marching boys below.


                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 All right, stop.  You way have noticed
                 how at the beginning Mister  Overstress
                 and Pitts: seemed to have a different
                 stride than the others, but soon they
                 were all walking in the same cadence.
                 Our encouragement made it even more
                 marked. Now this experiment was not to
                 single out Pitts or Overstress.  What it
                 demonstrates is how difficult it is for
                 any of us to listen to our own voice or
                 maintain our own beliefs in the presence
                 of others.  If any of you believe you
                 would have marched differently, then ask
                 yourself why you participated in the
                 clapping.  Lads, there is a great need in
                 all of us to be accepted.  However, that
                 need can be like a nasty current,
                 whisking us away unless we're strong and
                 determined swimmers.  Don't insist on the
                 separate path simply to be different or
                 contrary, but trust what is unique about
                 yourselves even if it's odd or unpopular.
                 As Mr. Robert Frost said, "Two roads
                 diverged in a wood, and I... I took the one
                 less traveled by, And that has made all
                 the difference."

        A bell rings, signifying the end of class.  Keating walks


        Nolan moves away from the window.


        Amused at Keating's antics, he turns back to his book.

66      INT. ENTRANCE TO THE DEAD POETS CAVE - NIGHT                   66

        Todd. Neil, Cameron, Pitts, and Meeks sit around.  A fog has
        moved in and the trees sway in the breeze.

                 where's Knox?

                 Getting ready for that party.

                 What about Charlie?  He's the one who
                 insisted on this meeting.

                 I went to the woods because I wanted to
                 live deliberately.  To live deep and suck
                 out all the marrow of life-~

        In the woods there is a noise the sound of girls' laughter.

                                GIRL'S VOICE
                 I can't see a thing.

                                CHARLIE'S VOICE
                 It's just over here.

        Charlie and TWO GIRLS arrive at the cave.  One is pretty, the
        other is plain.  The girls are about 20, blonde, beers in
        their hands.  They aren't the type to be seriously interested
        in Charlie or the other boys.  They're just here for a good

                 Hey guys, meet Gloria and...

                                PLAIN GIRL (TINA)

                 Tina and Gloria, this is the pledge
                 class of the Dead Poets society.

                 It's such a strange name!  Won't you
                 tell us what it means?

                 I told you, that's a secret.

                 Isn't he precious?

        Gloria gives Charlie an affectionate hug.  The other members
        or the club are flabbergasted.  These girls are wild, exotic
        creatures, the kind whose unashamed love of men causes young
        boys' hearts to come to rest in young boys'

        The girls giggle.

                 I can't call you Charlie anymore?
                        (Puts her arm around
                 What does Numama mean, honey?

                 It's Nuwanda, and I made it up.

                 I'm cold.

        Charlie puts his arm around Gloria.

                 Let's build a fire.

        Charlie shoots Meeks a look.  As the boys move off to gather
        wood, Charlie scrapes some mud off the wall of the cave and
        wipes it on his face like an Indian brave.  Me shoots Gloria
        his sexiest stare, then goes off with the other boys.  The
        girls whisper and giggle together.

67      EXT. THE DANBURRY HOUSE - NIGHT                                67

        Knox parks his bicycle along the side of the house.  He takes
        off his overcoat, and stuffs it in the bike saddle bag.  He
        straightens his tie, then goes to the front door.  He knocks.
        He can hear music inside.  He knocks again.  Finally, since no
        one comes to the door, Knox opens it.

68      INT. THE DANBURRY HOUSE - SAME                                 68

        Knox enters.  "Open the Door to Your Heart" by Darrell Banks
        is playing on the Hi-Fi.  On the entrance hall couch is a
        couple, making out like crazy.  Up and down the stairs are
        other couples doing the same.  Knox stands there, not knowing
        what to do.  Momentarily, Chris walks through, her hair an
        uncombed mass.


        Chris turns and sees Knox.

                 Oh, hi.  I'm glad you made it.  Did you
                 bring anybody?


                 Ginny Danburry's here.  Look for her.

                 But, Chris...

                 I gotta find Chet.  Make yourself at

        She exits.  Knox watches her.  He slumps in dejection.

69      EXT. THE WOODS AROUND THE CAVE                                 69

        Charlie is gathering wood.  Neil, Pitts, Todd and the other
        boys surround him.


                 It's Nuwanda.

                 Nuwanda, what is going on?

                 Nothing, unless you object to having
                 girls here.

                 Well, of course not.  It's just that...
                 You could have warned us.

                 I thought I'd be spontaneous.  I mean,
                 that's the point of this whole thing,
                 isn't it?

                 Where'd you find them?

                 They were walking along the fence past
                 the soccer field.  Said they were curious
                 about the school so I invited them to the

                 Do they go to Henley Hall?

                 I don't think they're in school.

                 They're townies?!

                 Cameron, what is the matter with you.
                 You act like they're your mother or
                 something.  You afraid of them?

                 Hell no, I'm not afraid of them just, if
                 we get caught with them, we're dead.

                                GLORIA (O.S.}
                 Say, what's going on out there?

                 Just gathering wood.
                        (low, to Cameron)
                 You just keep your mouth shut, jerkoff,
                 and there's nothing to worry about.

                 Watch who you call a jerkoff.

                 Oh calm down, Cameron.

        Charlie gives Cameron an expression of mock fear, then heads
        off.  The others follow.  Cameron watches Charlie and Neil for
        a moment, then walks after them.

70      INT. THE DANBURRY PANTRY - NIGHT                               70

        Knox, looking suicidal, wanders through the crowded party and
        ends up in the pantry.  Kids stand talking.  A couple in the
        corner is involved in a long kiss.  His hand keeps wandering
        to her knee and her hand keeps pushing his away, yet the kiss
        never breaks.  This happens over and over through the entire
        next scene.

        Ginny Danburry is in the corner and she and Knox exchange
        smiles.  At the sink a guy stands making bourbon and Cokes.
        The guy eyes Knox.

                 You Mutt Sanders' brother?

        Knox shakes his head no.

                                GUY (CONT'D)

        BUBBA is a big, drunk jock leaning on the refrigerator.

                                GUY (CONT'D)
                 This guy look like Mutt Sanders?

                 You his brother?

                 No relation.  Never heard of him.

                 Say Steve, where's your manners?  Here's
                 Mutt's brother and you don't offer him a
                 drink? Want some bourbon?

                 Actually I don't

        Steve puts a glass in Knox's hand and fills it with bourbon,
        adding only a hint of Coke.  Bubba clinks the glass with him.

                 To Mutt.

                 To Mutt.

                 To Mutt.

        Bubba and Steve drain their glasses.  Knox follows their
        lead, then bursts into a coughing fit.  Steve pours everyone
        more bourbon.

                 So what the hell's Mutt been up to?

                        (coughing fitfully)
                 Actually I don't really know Mutt.

                 To fucking Mutt.

                 To fucking Mutt.

                 Fucking Mutt

        They drain their glasses again.  Knox continues coughing.

                 Well, I'd better find Patsy.
                        (slaps Knox on the back)
                 Say hello to Mutt for me.

                 Will do.

        Knox and Ginny exchange knowing smiles.  Bubba leaves Knox,
        who is still coughing.  Ginny wanders out.  Steve pours him
        and Knox more bourbon.

71      INT. THE CAVE - NIGHT                                          71

        The boys have lit a fire and the girls are warming their
        hands.  The candle on the head of the "cave god" FLUTTERS.
        Tina notices the pitted statue.

                 I heard you guys were weird but not this

        She takes out a pint of whiskey and offers some to Neil.  He
        takes it and sips.  He obviously hasn't had much whiskey in
        his life but he tries to act like he has.  He hands it back.

                                TINA (CONT'D)
                 Go ahead, pass it around.

        Neil does.  It goes from boy to boy.  Each boy tries to act
        like he likes the terrible bitterness he tastes.  Unlike most
        of the others, Todd manages to keep from coughing as he
        swallows the whiskey.  Everyone is impressed.

                        (to Todd)
                 Yeah!  (to the others)  Don't you guys
                 miss having girls here?

                 Miss it?  It drives us crazy.  That's
                 part of what this club is about.  In
                 fact, I'd like to announce that I've
                 published an article in the school paper,
                 in the name of the Dead Poets society,
                 demanding girls be admitted to Welton, so
                 we can all stop beating off.

                 You what?!  How did you do that?

                 I'm one of the proofers.  I slipped the
                 article in.

                 Oh God, it's over now!

                 Why? Nobody knows who we are.

                 Don't you think they'll figure out who
                 did it?!  Don't you know they'll come to
                 you and demand to know what the Dead
                 Poets Society is?   Charlie, you had no
                 right to do something like that!

                 It's Nuwanda, Cameron.

                        (putting her arm around
                 That's right, it's Nuwanda.

                 And are we just playing around out here
                 or do we mean what we say?  If all we do
                 is come and read a bunch of poems to each
                 other, what the hell are we doing?

                 You still shouldn't have done it,
                 Charlie.  You don't speak for the club.

                 Hey, would you not worry about your
                 precious little necks?  If they catch me,
                 I'll tell them I made it up.  All your
                 asses are safe.  Look, Gloria and Tina
                 didn't come here to listen to us argue.
                 Are we gonna have a meeting or what?

                 Yeah, how do we know if we want to join
                 if you don't have a meeting?

                        (casts a surprised lock at

        Charlie ignores this.  He turns to Tina.

                 "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
                 Thou art more lovely and more temperate..."

        In his recital, Charlie has aimed these words directly at
        Tina.  She melts into warm goo.

                 Oh, that's so sweet!

        Tina hugs Charlie.  The other boys look at each other, trying
        unsuccessfully to hide their incredible jealousy.

                 I wrote that for you.

                 You did?

                 I'll write one for you too, Gloria.
                       (closes his eyes then)
                 "She walks in beauty like the night.."

        Charlie's eyes open.  He has forgotten the words to this
        poem.  Covering, he walks across the cave.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)
                 "She walks in beauty like the night..."

        Charlie turns his back, opens a book, and reads quickly to
        himself.  He closes it, puts the bock down, and turns back to

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)
                 'of cloudless climes and starry skies;
                 All that's best of dark and bright Meet
                 in her aspect and her eyes.'

        Gloria squeals with delight.

                 Isn't he wonderful?!

        The other boys are absolutely appalled, but desperately
        jealous that Charlie is getting away with this.  Gloria hugs

72      INT. THE DANBURRY LIVING ROOM - NIGHT                          72

        Music by the Drifters is playing loudly.  Every light in the
        room is out.  The only illumination is moonlight through the
        windows.  Only after our eyes get adjusted to the dark can we
        see that the room is filled with couples making out.

        Knox, carrying another drink and looking tipsy, enters.  He
        walks a bit, then trips over a couple on the floor.

                                ANGRY GUY'S VOICE


        Knox falls onto the sofa.  To his left sit a couple making
        out heavily.  Their breathing is like that of some giant
        beast.  To Knox' right is another couple, making out too. Knox
        tries to get up but the couple he tripped aver has now rolled
        against his shins, pinning him.  Knox tries to get comfortable
        in his little spot on the sofa.

        The music stops.  The room sounds like an artificial
        respiration ward.  The couple to Knox' right look and sound as
        if they are going to chew each other's lips off.  Knox glances
        at the couple to his left.  He hears:

                                BOY'S VOICE
                 Oh Chris, you're so beautiful.

        The couple are Chris and Chet.  Chris is sitting right next
        to Knox.  Music starts again.  It's "This Magic Moment" by the
        Drifters.  Chris and Chet continue petting heavily.  Knox
        tries to look away but can't keep his eyes off Chris.

                 Chris, you are so gorgeous.

        Chet kisses Chris hard and she leans against Knox.  In the
        moonlight-filled room, Knox sees the outline of Chris' face,
        the nape of her neck, the curves of her breasts.  He downs the
        rest of his drink and tries to look away.

                 Oh my God help me.

        Chris obliviously continues to lean against Knox.  Knox is
        struggling with temptation--trying not to even look--but he's
        losing.  Suddenly, he turns and looks at Chris again.  Every
        rational thing inside of him says "no" but his emotions are
        saying yes.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                        (to himself)
                 carpe breastum.  Seize the breast.

                        (to Chet)

                 I didn't say anything.

        Chet and Chris continue to kiss.  As though his hand were
        being drawn by a magnet too powerful to resist, Knox' hand
        reaches out and begins to ever so lightly stroke the nape of
        Chris' neck down toward her breast.  Chris obviously thinks
        that the hand is Chet's and she lets it continue.  Knox moves
        his hand up and down her, sensuously.  He closes his eyes,
        breathing heavily.

                                CHRIS (IN THE DARK)
                 Oh Chet, that feels fabulous,

                                CHET (IN THE DARK)
                 It does?

                                CHRIS (IN THE DARK)
                 You know,

        Knox pulls his hand away. Chet thinks a moment, then kisses
        Chris again.

                                CHRIS (IN THE DARK)
                 Don't stop.

                                CHET (IN THE DARK)
                 Stop what?

                                CHRIS (IN THE DARK)

        Knox puts his hand back on Chris' neck.  Again he starts
        rubbing her, ever so gently, moving down toward her breast.

                                CHRIS (IN THE DARK)
                 Oh... oh...

        We can see Chet's silhouette pausing over Chris, trying to
        figure out what she is talking about.  Giving up, he goes back
        to kissing her.  Chris continues to show her pleasure.

        Knox leans his head back on the sofa and his breathing
        becomes heavy.  The music builds.  Unable to resist, he rubs
        Chris' chest, getting dangerously close to her breast.  Chris
        is breathing hard. Knox is slipping into ecstasy.  His drink
        falls out of his hand.

        Suddenly Chet's hand grabs Knox's hand and a lamp light
        flicks on.  Knox is face to face with a furious Chet and a
        confused Chris.

                 What are you doing?!


                        (feigning surprise)
                 Chet!  Chris!  What are you doing here?

                 why you...

        Chet smashes Knox in the face with his fist.  Chet grabs Knox
        by the shirt, throws him to the floor, and jumps on him.  He
        begins swinging at Knox's face which Knox is doing his best to

                                CHET (CONT'D)
                 You fucked up little prick!

                        (beginning to feel sorry
                         for Knox)
                 Chet, you don't have to hurt him.

        Chet's fists hit Knox over and over.

                                CHRIS (CONT'D)
                 Chet, stop!  He didn't mean anything.

        She pushes Chet off.  Knox rolls over, holding his face.

                                CHRIS (CONT'D)
                 That's enough!

        Chet stands over Knox, who is holding his bloody nose and
        bruised face.

                 I'm sorry, Chris.  I'm sorry!

                 You want some more, you little son of a
                 bitch? Huh?!  Get the hell out of here!!

        He moves at Knox again, but Chris and some others hold him
        back.  Others lead Knox out of the room.

                 Chris, I'm sorry!

                 Next time I see you, you're dead!

73      OMIT                                                           73

74      INT. THE CAVE - NIGHT                                          74

        The fire casts warm light on the wall of the cave.  Gloria
        sits with her arm around Charlie, staring adoringly.  The
        bottle passes between Tina and the others.

                 Hey guys, why don't you show Tina the
                 Dead Poets garden?


                  What garden?

        Charlie silently motions with his eyes for Pitts and the
        others to vamoose.  Neil elbows Pitts and makes a motion
        outside with his head.  Suddenly Pitts gets it.

                                PITTS (CONT'D)
                  Oh. Right.  That garden.  Come on, guys.

        The boys head out with Tina.

                  This is so strange!  You guys even have
                  a garden?

        Meeks stands in the cave, still not getting it.

                  What are you guys talking about?

        All of the others are gone.  Meeks looks at Charlie, who
        stares daggers at him.

                                MEEKS (CONT'D)
                  Charles, uh, Nuwanda, we don't have a

        Neil comes back in and pulls Meeks out.  Charlie waits for
        them to go.

                        (to Gloria)
                  God, for a smart guy, he's so stupid.

        Gloria stares into Charlie's eyes.  Charlie smiles.

                  I think he's sweet.

                  I think you're sweet.

        Charlie looks at her.  He closes his eyes and leans slowly in
        to kiss her.  Just as he is about to, she stands.

                  You know what really excites me about


                  Every guy that I meet wants me for one
                  thing my body.  You're not like that.

                  I'm not?

                  No!  Anybody else would have jumped my
                  bones by now but you're after my soul.
                  Make me up some more poetry.


                  Please!    It's so wonderful to be
                  appreciated for my mind!

        She gets up and starts pacing.  Charlie puts his hand over
        his face.  Gloria turns and looks at him.

                                GLORIA (CONT'D)
                  Nuwanda?  Please?

                  All right!  I'm thinking!
                  "Let me not to the marriage of true
                  Admit impediments; love is not love
                  Which alters when it alteration finds
        Or bends with the remover to remove."

        Gloria emits sensual moans.

                  Don't stop.

                        (more and more rapidly and
                         punctuated by Gloria's moans)
                  "O, no, it is an ever-fixed mark That
                  looks on tempests and is never shaken; It
                  is the star to every wandering bark whose
                  worth's unknown, although his height be

                  This is better than sex any day.  This
                  is romance!

        As a frustrated Charlie continues reciting

                                                             DISSOLVE TO:

75      INT. WELTON ACADEMY CHAPEL - DAY                               75

        There is a buzz in the student body as they move to their
        seats, passing school newspapers amongst themselves.  Knox's
        face is marked with bruises.  Neil, Todd, Pitts, Necks,
        Cameron and especially Charlie's faces are marked with

        Pitts hands Charlie a briefcase.

                  All set.

        Charlie nods.  Mr. Nolan enters.  All put away the newspapers
        and stand.  Nolan strides to the podium and motions for
        everyone to sit.  All obey.

                  In this week's issue of Walter Honor,
                  there appeared an unauthorized and
                  profane article about the need for girls
                  at Welton.  Rather than spend my valuable
                  time ferreting out the guilty parties--
                  and let me assure you I will find them--I
                  am asking any and all students who know
                  anything about this article to make
                 themselves known here and now.  Whoever
                 the guilty persons are, this is your only
                 chance to avoid expulsion from this

        Suddenly, somewhere in the room there is the sound of a
        TELEPHONE RINGING.  Charlie briskly lifts the briefcase into
        his lap and opens it.  Inside the briefcase is a ringing
        telephone.  Everyone in assembly is astounded.  No one has
        ever done something this outrageous here.  Charlie, undaunted,
        seemingly serious, answers the phone.

                                CHARLIE (INTO PHONE)
                        (for all to hear)
                 Welton Academy, hello?  Yes, he is, just
                 a moment.  Mr. Nolan, it's for you.


        Charlie places the receiver back to his ear.

                                CHARLIE (INTO PHONE)
                 It is?  You do? I'll tell him.  Mr.
                 Nolan, it's God. He says we should have
                 girls at Welton.

        There is a blast of laughter from the students.  On stage
        with the teachers, Keating is surprised and amused, but
        worried.  He and McAllister exchange concerned looks.  Blood
        red, furious, Nolan strides down the aisle to Charlie.  He
        sweeps the phone off of Charlie's lap.

                 I will not be mocked, Mr. Dalton!

        He takes Charlie by the arm and jerks him out of the
        assembly.  Keating watches with concern.

76      INT. NOLAN'S OFFICE - DAY                                      76

        Charlie stands in the middle of the room.  Nolan paces

                 Who else was involved in this?

                 No one, sir.  It was just me.  I did the
                 proofing so I inserted my article in
                 place of Rob Crane's.

                 Mr. Dalton, if you think you're the
                 first to try to get thrown out of this
                 school, think again.  Others have had
                 similar actions and they have failed just
                 as surely as you will fail.  Bend over
                 and grab your shins.

        Charlie obeys and Nolan produces a paddle. The paddle has
        holes drilled in it to speed its progress. Nolan takes off his
        jacket and moves behind Charlie.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
                 Count aloud, Mr. Dalton.

        He slams the paddle into Charlie's buttocks.


        Nolan swings the paddle again.  This time he gets more power
        into it.  Charlie winces.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)

        Nolan delivers and Charlie counts.  By the fourth lick, the
        pain is so intense that Charlie is barely audible.  By the
        seventh lick, tears are flowing down Charlie's cheeks.  The
        ninth and tenth licks have Charlie choking on his words,
        speechless.  Nolan stops after ten licks.

                 Do you still insist that this was your
                 idea and your idea alone?

                        (choking back pain)
                 Yes... sir.

                 What is this "Dead Potts Society"?  I
                 want names.

                        (still in agony)
                 It's only me, Mr. Nolan.  I swear. I
                 made it up.

                 If I find that there are others, Mr.
                 Dalton, they will be expelled and you
                 will remain enrolled.  Stand up.

        Charlie obeys.  His face is blood red.  He fights back tears
        of pain and humiliation.

                                NOLAN (CONT'D)
                 Welton can forgive, Mr. Dalton, provided
                 you have the courage to admit your
                 mistakes.  When you are ready to make
                 your apology to the entire school, let me

77      INT. THE JUNIOR DORM - AFTERNOON                               77

        The boys are milling in their rooms, waiting for Charlie's
        return.  Someone sees him coming.  All pretend to be studying.

        Charlie enters, moving slowly, trying not to show his pain.
        As he walks toward his room, Neil, Todd, Knox (bruised face),
        Pitts, and Necks approach him.

                 What happened? Were you kicked out?

                        (not looking at anyone)

                 What happened?

                 I'm supposed to turn everybody in,
                 apologize to the school and all will be

        Charlie heads into his room.  The others look at each other.

                 What are you going to do? - Charlie?

                 Damn it, Neil, the name is Nuwanda.

        Charlie gives the boys a pregnant look, then goes into his
        room and slams his door.  Smiles of admiration cross the boys'
        faces.  Charlie has not been broken.

78      INT. WELTON CLASSROOM BUILDING - AFTERNOON                     78

        Keating walks down the corridor.  He is just about to stop
        and talk to McAllister when Nolan passes.

                 Mr. Keating, could we have a word?

79      INT. KEATING'S EMPTY CLASSROOM - DAY                           79

        Keating and Nolan enter.  Keating turns on the light.  Nolan
        looks around.

                 This was my first classroom, John, did
                 you know that?
                        (looks at Keating's desk)
                 My first desk.

                 I didn't know you taught.

                 English.  Way before your time.  It was
                 hard giving it up, I'll tell you.
                 I'm hearing rumors, John, of some
                 unusual teaching methods in your
                 classroom.  I'm not saying they have
                 anything to do with the Dalton boy's
                 outburst, but I don't think I have to
                 warn you that boys his age are very

                 Your reprimand made quite an impression
                 I'm sure.

                        (letting this pass)
                 What was going on in the courtyard the
                 other day?


        Boys marching.  Clapping in unison.

                 Oh that. That was an exercise to prove a
                 point.  About the evils of conformity.

                 John, the curriculum here is set.  It's
                 proven.  It works.  If you question it,
                 what's to prevent them from doing the

                 I always thought education was learning
                 to think for yourself.

                        (almost laughs)
                 At these boys' age? Not on your life!
                 Tradition, John.  Discipline.
                        (pats Keating on the
                 Prepare them for college, and the rest
                 will take care of itself.

        Mr. Nolan smiles and leaves.  Keating stands, thinking. After
        a beat, McAllister sticks his head in the door.

                 I wouldn't worry about the boys being
                 too conformist if I were you.

                 Why is that?

                 Well, you yourself graduated from these
                 hallowed halls, did you now?


                 So if you want to raise a confirmed
                 atheist, give him a rigid religious
                 upbringing.  Works every time.

        Keating stares at McAllister.  He suddenly lets cut a laugh.
        McAllister smiles, then disappears down the hall.

79A     INT. THE JUNIOR CLASS DORM - AFTERNOON                        79A

        Boys are walking out on the way to their activities.  Keating
        enters and approaches Charlie, who is exiting with his

                 Mr. Keating!

                 I don't know what misguided impulse
                 caused you to pull that ridiculous stunt,
                 Mr. Dalton, but, whatever it was, I hope
                 you've learned your lesson.

                 You're siding with Mr. Nolan?!  What
                 about carpe diem and sucking all the
                 marrow out of life and all that?

                 Sucking out the marrow doesn't mean
                 getting the bone stuck in your throat,
                 Charles.  You still have responsibilities
                 to yourself and those who care about you.

                 But I thought-

                 There is a place for daring and a place
                 for caution as well, Charles, and a wise
                 person understands which one is called
                 for.  Getting expelled from this school
                 is not an act of wisdom.  It's far from
                 perfect but there are still opportunities
                 to be had here.

                 Yeah?  Like what?

                 Like, if nothing else, the opportunity
                 to attend my classes, understand?

                 Yes sir.

                 So keep your head about you--the lot of

                                NEIL, TODD, PITTS, MEEKS, CAMERON, KNOX
                 Yes, Sir.

        Keating gives then' a slight smile, then exits.

80       OMIT                                                          80

81      INT. KEATING'S CLASSROOM - DAY                                 81

        The boys are seated.  Keating walks to the blackboard and in
        a big scrawl writes:  "COLLEGE".

                 Gentlemen, today we will consider a
                 skill which I consider indispensable for
                 getting the most out of college analyzing
                 books you haven't read. College will
                 probably destroy your love for poetry.
                 Hours of boring analysis, dissection and
                 criticism will see to that.  College will
                 also expose you to all manner of
                 literature--much of it transcendent works
                 of magic which you must devour; some of
                 it utter drek which you must avoid like
                 the plague.

        Keating pauses.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Suppose you are taking a course entitled
                 "Modern Novels."  All semester you have
                 been reading masterpieces such as the
                 touching PERE GORIER by Balzac and the
                 moving FATHERS and SONS by Turgenev, but
                 when you receive your assignment for your
                 final paper, you discover that you are to
                 write an essay on the theme of parental
                 love in The Doubtful Debutante, a novel--
                 and I use that term generously here--by
                 none other than the professor himself.

        Keating looks at the boys with a raised eyebrow, then

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 After reading the first three pages of
                 the book, you realize that you would
                 rather volunteer for combat than waste
                 your precious earthly time infecting your
                 mind with this sewage, but do you
                 despair?  Take an "F." Absolutely not
                 because you are prepared.

        Keating paces.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
        Open The Doubtful Deb and learn from the jacket that the book
        is about Frank, a farm equipment salesman who sacrifices
        everything to provide his social climbing daughter Christine
        with the debut she so desperately desires.  Begin your essay
        by disclaiming the need to restate the plot while at the same
        time regurgitating enough of it to convince the professor that
        you've read his book.  Next shift to something pretentious and
        familiar.  For instance, you might write, "What is remarkable
        to note are the similarities between the author's dire picture
        of parental love and modern Freudian theory. Christine is
        Electra, her father is a fallen Oedipus.'  Finally, skip to
        the obscure and elaborate like this:

        Keating pauses, then...

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 what is most remarkable is the novel's
                 uncanny connection with Hindu Indian
                 philosopher Avesh Rahesh Non.  Rahesh Non
                 discussed in painful detail the
                 discarding of parents by children for the
                 three headed monster of ambition, money,
                 and social success.  Go on to discuss
                 Rahesh Non's theories about what feeds
                 the monster, how to behead it, etcetera
                 etcetera.  End by praising the
                 professor's brilliant writing and
                 consummate courage in introducing The
                 Doubtful Deb to you.

        Meeks raises his hand.

                 Oh Captain, My Captain.  What if we
                 don't know anything about someone like
                 Rahesh Non?

                 Rahesh Non never existed, Mr. Meeks.
                 You make him or someone like him up.  No
                 self important college professor such as
                 this one would dare admit ignorance of
                 such an obviously important figure and
                 you will probably receive a comment
                 similar to the one I received:

        Keating finds a paper on his desk and reads from it:

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Your allusions to Rahesh Non were
                 insightful and well presented.  Glad to
                 see that someone besides myself
                 appreciates this great but forgotten
                 Eastern master.  A plus.

        He drops the paper.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Gentlemen, analyzing dreadful books you
                 haven't read will be on your final exam,
                 so I suggest you practice on your own.
                 Now for some traps of college exams. Take
                 cut a blue book and pencil, boys. This is
                 a pop quiz.

        The boys obey.  Keating passes out tests.  He sets up a
        screen in the front Of the room, then goes to the back of the
        room and sets up a slide projector.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Big universities are crowded Sodoms and
                 Gomorrahs filled with those delectable
                 beasts we see so little of here: females.
                 The level of distraction is dangerously
                 high, but this quit is designed to
                 prepare you.  Let me warn you, this test
                 will count.  Begin.

        The boys begin their tests.  Keating puts a slide in the
        projector.  On the screen in the front of the room appears a
        blow-up of a beautiful girl, college age, leaning over to pick
        up a pencil.  Her figure is quite remarkable, and, bending
        over as she is, you can see her panties.  The boys glance up
        from their tests, then most do a double-take on the photo.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Concentrate on your tests, boys.  You
                 have twenty minutes.

        Keating changes the slide.  This time we see a beautiful
        woman in scanty lingerie (an ad from "Vogue" or a similar
        magazine).   The boys find it extremely difficult to
        concentrate on their tests.  The slide show continues with
        slide after slide of beautiful women in revealing and
        provocative poses, tight blow-ups of naked female Greek
        statues, etc.  The boys try in vain to take their tests. Knox
        writes "Chris, Chris, Chris" over and over on his paper.

                                                             DISSOLVE TO:

82-85   OMITTED                                                     82-85

86A     EXT. THE WELTON CAPGUS - DUSK                                 86A

        Boys in heavy-hooded jackets and winter mufflers move from
        building to building.  The wind blows leaves around in
        swirling torrents.

        ANGLE ON A PATH where Todd and Neil walk together.  Todd
        holds a copy of "A Midsummer's Night's Dream."  Neil is using
        his Puck jester's stick like a sword while practicing his

                 Here, villain, draw and ready. where art

                 I will be with thee straight.

                        (from memory)
                 Follow me then to plainer ground.  God,
                 I love this!

                 This play?

                 Yes, and acting!  It's got to be one of
                 the most wonderful things in the world.
                 Most people, if they're lucky, live about
                 half an exciting life! If I could get the
                 parts, I could live dozens of lives.

        With a theatrical flourish, he runs and leaps onto a wall.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 To be or net to be, that is the
                 question!  God, for the first time in my
                 whole life, I feel completely alive!  You
                 have to try it.

        Neil jumps down from the wall.

                                NEIL (CONT'D)
                 You should come to rehearsals.  I know
                 they need people to work the lights and

                 No thanks.

                 Lots of girls.  The girl who plays
                 Hermia is incredible.

                 I'll come to the performance.

                 Chicken shit.  Where were we?

                 Yea, art thou there?

                 Put more into it!

                 YEA, ART THOU THERE?!

                 That's it!  "Follow my voice.  We'll try
                 no manhood here."  See you at dinner.

        Neil and Todd have arrived at their dorm.  Neil runs in. Todd
        shakes his head and walks off.

86      INT. TODD AND NEIL'S DORM ROOM - DUSK                          86

        Neil enters in a whirlwind of excitement, fencing the air
        with the Jester's stick.  Neil turns and sees his father,
        sitting at his desk.  Neil is shocked.


                                MR. PERRY
                 Neil, you are going to quit this
                 ridiculous play immediately.

                 Father, I--

        Mr. Perry jumps to his feet and pounds his hand on the desk.

                                MR. PERRY
                 Don't you dare talk back to me!  It's
                 bad enough that you've wasted your time
                 with this absurd acting business.  But
                 you deliberately deceived me!
                        (paces furiously)
                 Who put this in your head? How did you
                 expect to get away with it? Answer me!

                 Nobody-  I thought I'd surprise you.
                 I've got all As and-

                                MR. PERRY
                 Did you really think I wouldn't find
                 out?!  "My niece is in a play with your
                 son," Mrs. Marks says.  "You must be
                 mistaken," I say.  "My son isn't in a
                 play."  You made a liar out of me, Neil!
                 Now you will go tomorrow and tell them
                 you are quitting.

                 Father, I have the main part.  The
                 performance is tomorrow night.  Father,

                                MR. PERRY
                        (moves at Neil)
                 I don't care if the world is coming to
                 an end tomorrow night, you are through
                 with that play!  Is that clear?  Is that

                 Yes sir.

        Mr. Perry stops.  He stares hard at his son.

                                MR. PERRY
                 I've made great sacrifices to get you
                 here, Neil.  You will not let me down.

        He turns and exits.  Neil stands there for a long time.  He
        goes to his desk, then suddenly begins pounding his fist on
        it. He pounds and pounds as tears roll down his face.

87      INT. THE WELTON DINING ROOM - EVENING                          87

        All of the society "pledges" except Neil sit eating.  It
        could be noticed that the boys--Charlie, Knox, Todd, Weeks,
        and Pitts--seem to be having difficulty eating.  They look
        awkward.  Old Hager approaches.

                 Mr. Dalton, what is wrong, son?  Are you
                 having difficulty with your meal?


        Hager watches the boys.

                 Misters Necks and Overstreet and
                 Anderson, are you normally left-handed?

                 No sir.

                 Then why are you eating with your left

        The boys look at each other.  Knox speaks for the group:

                 We thought it would be good to break old
                 habits, sir.

                 What is wrong with old habits, Mr.

                 They perpetuate mechanical living, sir.
                 They limit your mind.

                 Mr. Overstreet, I suggest you worry less
                 about breaking old habits and more about
                 developing good study habits.  Do you

                 Yes sir.

                 That goes for all of you.  Now eat with
                 your correct hands.

        Hager watches.  The boys obey.  After he moves away, Charlie
        switches hands and begins eating with his left hand again.
        One by one, the others do the same.

        Neil enters, looking solemn and upset.  He silently takes his
        seat at the table.

                 Visit from my father.

                 Do you have to quit the play?

                 I don't know.

                 Why don't you talk to Mr. Keating about

                 What good will that do?

                 Maybe he'll have some advice.  Maybe
                 he'll even talk to your father.

                 Are you kidding?  Don't be ridiculous.

88      EXT. KEATING'S ROOM - EVENING                                  88

        Keating's quarters are on the second floor of a dorm, but
        they are entered from the outside.  Charlie, Todd, Pitts1 and
        Neil stand outside the door.  Charlie knocks.

                 This is stupid.

                 It's better than doing nothing.

        No one comes to the door.

                 He's not here.

        Charlie tries the door and it opens.

                 Let's wait for him.

        Charlie goes in.

                 Charlie!  Nuwanda!

        Charlie doesn't come out.  Curiosity gets the best of the
        others, who reluctantly follow Charlie in.

89      INT. KEATINGS ROOM - SAME                                      89

        The furniture is simple and spartan and the room looks almost
        lonely.  The boys stand around looking uncomfortable.

                 Nuwanda, we shouldn't be in here.

        Charlie and the boys survey the room.  There is a suitcase on
        the floor by the door.  A few books lay by the bed.  Charlie
        walks to the desk.

                 Whoa, look at her!

        On the desk is a framed picture of a beautiful girl in her
        20s.  Lying next to the picture is a half-written letter.
        Charlie picks it up and reads.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D) (reading)
                 My darling Jessica.  It's so lonely at
                 times without you bla bla bla.  All I can
                 do to put myself at ease is study your
                 beautiful picture or close my eyes and
                 imagine your radiant smile--but my poor
                 imagination is a dim substitute for you.
                 Oh, how I miss you and wish--

        The other boys have sensed an extra presence in the room.
        They back away from Charlie.  Suddenly Charlie stops and sees
        Mr. Keating.

                                CHARLIE (CONT'D)

        Keating calmly takes the letter from Charlie and folds it.

                 A woman is a cathedral, boys.  Worship
                 at one every chance you get.

        He OPENS a drawer.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Anything else you'd care to rifle
                 through, Mr. Dalton?

                 I'm sorry.  I, we

        Keating puts the letter in the drawer and closes it.  Charlie
        looks around for help.  Neil steps forward.

                 Oh Captain, My Captain, we came here so
                 I could talk to you about something.


                 Actually, I'd like to talk to you alone.

        Charlie and the others are glad to be let out.

                 I gotta go study.

                 Yeah.  See you, Kr. Keating.

        They hurry to leave.

                 Drop by any time.

                 Thank you, sir.

                        (low, while exiting)
                 Damn it, Nuwanda.  You idiot.

                        (also exiting)
                 I couldn't stop myself.

        Keating can't help but smile to himself.  Neil and Mr.
        Keating are alone.  Neil paces, looking around.

                 Gosh, they don't give you much room
                 around here, do they?

                 Maybe they don't want worldly things
                 distracting me from my teaching.

                 Why do you do it?  I mean, with all this
                 seize-the-day business, I'd have thought
                 you'd be out seeing the world or

                 Ah, but I am seeing the world, Neil.
                 The new world.  Seeing a student like you
                 take root and bloom.  It's worth
                 everything.  That's why I came back here.
                 A place like this needs at least one
                 teacher like me.
                        (smiles at his joke, then:)
                 Did you come here to talk about my

                 Mr. Keating, my father is making me quit
                 the play at Henley Hall.  When I think
                 about carpe diem and all that, I feel
                 like I'm in prison!  I mean, I can see
                 his point.  We're not a rich family like
                 Charlie's.  But he's planned the rest of
                 my life for me and he's never even asked
                 me what I want!

                 You can't live a life for someone else,
                 Neil.  You can only live for yourself.
                 Have you told your father what you just
                 told me?  Have you shown him your passion
                 about acting?

                 Are you kidding?  He'd kill me!

                 Then you're playing a part for him too,
                 aren't you?  A dangerously self-
                 destructive one.

        Keating watches Neil pace anxiously.

                                KEATING (CONT'D)
                 Neil, I know this seems impossible but
                 you have to go to your father and show
                 him what you're feeling.  You have to let
                 him see who you are-  It's your only

                 I know what he'll say.  He'll say that
                 acting is just a whim and that it's
                 frivolous and that I should forget about
                 it.  He'll tell me how they're counting
                 on me and to put it out of my mind "for
                 my own good."

                 Well, if it's more than a whim, then
                 you'll have to prove that to him.  You'll
                 have to show him with your passion and
                 commitment that it's what you really want
                 to do.  If that doesn't work, at least by
                 then you'll be eighteen and able to do
                 what you want.

                 Eighteen!  That's two years!  What about
                 the play?  The performance is tomorrow

                 Give your father the benefit of the
                 doubt.  Talk to him.  Let him see who you

                 Isn't there an easier way?

                 Not if you're going to stay true to

        Neil sits there for a long time.

90/91   OMITTED                                                     90/91

92      INT. CHARLIE'S CAVE - NIGHT                                    92

        The boys sit in the candle-lit room.  Charlie blows notes on
        his saxophone.  Knox sits in the corner, mumbling to himself,
        working on a love poem to Chris.  Todd sits writing something
        too.  Cameron is studying.  Pitts is scratching a quote out of
        a book into the wall.  Knox looks at his watch.

        Ten minutes to curfew.

        Nobody responds.  Knox looks at Todd.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 What are you writing?

                 I don't know.  A poem.

                 For class?

                 I don't know.

        Charlie keeps playing the sax.  Todd keeps writing.  Knox
        looks at his love poem to Chris.  He slaps it on the side of
        his leg.

                 Damn.  Damn!  If I could just get Chris
                 to read this poem!

                 Why don't you read it to her? It worked
                 for Nuwanda.

                 She won't even see me, Pitts.

                 Nuwanda recited poetry to Gloria and she
                 jumped all over him... right, Nuwanda?

        Charlie stops blowing on his sax.  He thinks a moment about
        his answer.


        He starts blowing notes again.  Off in the distance, we hear
        a bell ring.  Charlie finishes his melody, puts his sax in its
        case, and moves out.  Todd, Cameron, and Pitts exit too. Knox
        stands there, alone, looking at his poem. then exits

                 Damn!  Goddam!  If it worked for him,
                 it'll work for me.

93A     EXT. THE WELTON GROUNDS - EARLY MORNING                       93A

        The dawn rises over the frozen Welton campus.  Snow covers
        the ground.  The school bagpiper stands, playing a haunting

93      EXT. THE JUNZOR DORMZTORY - SAME                               93

        Knox comes out of the dorm building, bundled against the
        freezing weather.  Be hurries onto his bike and speeds away.

94      EXT. RIDGEWAY HIGH SCHOOL                                      94

        A large sign proclaims Ridgeway High School.  Knox bikes up
        to the school at full speed.  He now carries a bouquet of
        flowers.  Out of breath, he quickly discards the bike and runs
        into the school.

95      INT. THE HALLWAYS OF RIDGEWAY HIGH - MORNING                   95

        Students of both sexes move through the hallways of this
        public school.  Students are at their lockers, putting up
        their coats and getting out their books.  Knox runs through,
        erratically looking around.  He hurries down one hallway,
        stops and asks a student something, then runs up a flight of

A96     INT. ANOTHER RIDGEWAY HIGH HALLWAY - SAME                     A96

        Chris stands in front of her locker, chatting with a couple
        of girlfriends1 taking out some books.  Knox spots her and


                 Knox!  what are you doing here?

        She pulls Knox away from her girlfriends.

                 I came to apologize for the other night.
                 I brought you these and a poem I wrote.

        He holds out the flowers and the poem.  Chris sees them, but
        doesn't take them.

                 If Chet sees you, he'll kill you, don't
                 you know that?

                 I don't care.  I love you, Chris.  You
                 deserve better than Chet and I'm it.
                 Please accept these.

                 Knox, you're crazy.

        A bell rings.  People clear the halls.

                 Please.  I acted like a jerk and I know
                 it.  Please?

        She looks at the flowers as if she's thinking about accepting

                 No!  And stop bugging me.

        She walks into the classroom and closes the door.  The
        hallway clears.  Knox stands holding his flowers and his poem.
        There is a moment's hesitation, then he opens the door and
        walks into the classroom.

96      INT. CHRIS' CLASSROOM - SAME                                   96

        Class hasn't started but students are taking their seats. The
        teacher leans over a student's desk, helping her with her
        homework.  Knox enters and walks to Chris' desk.

                 Knox, I don't believe this!

                 All I'm asking you to do is listen.
                        (he opens his poem and
                 "The heavens made a girl named Chris,
                 With hair and skin of gold
                 To touch her would be paradise To kiss
                 her glory untold."

        Chris turns red with embarrassment.  Her friends restrain
        giggles.  Knox continues reading.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 They made a goddess and called her
                 Chris,  How?  I'll never know. But though
                 my soul is far behind, My love can only

        The rest of the class has now seen what is happening and all
        eyes are on Knox.  Chris covers her face but Knox continues.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 I see a sweetness in her smile, Bright
                 light shines from her eyes, But life is
                 complete--contentment is mine, just
                 knowing that she's alive."

        Knox lowers the poem.  Chris looks up at him, utterly
        embarrassed.  Knox puts the poem and the flowers on her desk.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)

                 I love you, Chris.

        He turns and leaves.

97      INT. KEATING'S ENGLISH CLASSROOM - DAY                         97

        The boys sit.  Keating hasn't arrived.  Momentarily, Knox
        enters and hurries to his desk.

                 How'd it go?  Did you read it to her?


                 All right!  What'd she say?

                 I don't know.

                 What do you mean you don't know?

                 I'll tell you later.

        The door to the room opens.  In walks Keating, wearing his
        usual scarf and jacket.  He puts his books on his desk, then
        looks out over the class.

                 Neil, could I see you a moment.

        He walks into the hallway.

98      INT. THE HALLWAY OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM - SAME                  98

        The corridor is empty except for Neil and Keating.  Keating
        closes the door to the classroom.

                 What did your father say? Did you talk
                 to him?


                 Really?  You told your father what you
                 told me?  You let him see your passion for

                 Yeah.  He didn't like it one bit but at
                 least he's letting me stay in the play. Of
                 course, he won't be able to come. He'll
                 be in Chicago on business.  But I think he's
                 gonna let me stay with acting.  As long as
                 I keep my grades up.

        Neil heads back into the classroom.  Keating watches.

99      INT. THE DORM PHONE ROOM/STAIRWELL - NIGHT                     99

        Todd, Knox, Cameron, Pitts, and Meeks all wear coats and ties.
        They mill in the dorm lobby.  Knox is off to himself, still
        looking morose.

                 Where's Nuwanda?  We're gonna miss Neil's

                 He said something about getting red before
                 he left.

                 What the hell does that mean?

                 You know Charlie.

        Charlie scampers down the stairs.

                 What's this getting red?

        Charlie checks around, then opens his shirt, revealing that he
        has painted a red lightning bolt on his chest.

                 What's it for?

                 It's an Indian warrior symbol for virility.
                 Makes me feel potent.  Like I can drive girls

                 But what if they see it, Nuwanda?

                 So much the better.

        The others shoot each other looks, confirming their mutual
        suspicion that Charlie has finally lost his marbles.  As they
        head out of the lobby, they pass Chris who is entering.


                 Knox, why are you doing this to me?

                        (looking around)
                 You can't be in here.

        He leads her out of the dorm.

99A     EXT. THE DORM BUILDING - NIGHT                                99A

        It is snowing.  Knox ushers Chris out of the building and down
        the sidewalk away from the others.

                 If they catch you here, we'll both be in
                 big trouble.

                 Oh, but it's fine for you to come barging
                 into my school and make a complete fool out
                 of me?

                 I didn't mean to make a fool of you.

                 Well, you did!  Chet found out and he's
                 nuts.  It took everything I could do to
                 keep him from coming here and killing you.
                 You have to stop this stuff, Knox.

                 But I love you.

                 You say that over and over but you don't
                 even know me!

        At the dorm, the others are waiting.  Knox waves them on.

                 Go ahead.  I'll catch up.

        The others walk on.  Knox waits for them to disappear.

                                KNOX (CONT'D)
                 Of course I know you!  From the first time
                 I saw you, I knew you had a wonderful soul.

                 Just like that?!  You just knew?

                 Of course just like that.  That's how you
                 always know when it's right.

                 And if it so happens that you're wrong? If
                 it just so happens that I could care less
                 About you?

                 Then you wouldn't be here warning me
                 about Chet.

        This gives Chris pause.

                 Look, I've got to go.  I'm gonna be
                 late for the play.

                 Are you going with Chet?

                 Chet?  To a play? Are you kidding?

                 Then come with me.

                 Knox, you are so infuriating!

                 Just give me one chance.  If you don't
                 like me after tonight, I'll stay away


                 I promise.  Dead Poets honor.  Come with me
                 tonight, then if you don't want to see me
                 again, I swear I'll bow out.

                 God, if Chet found out he'd...

                 Chet won't know anything.  We'll sit in
                 back and sneak away as soon as it's over.

                 Knox, if you promise that this will be the
                 end of it-

                 Dead Poets honor.

                 What is that?

                 My Word

     He crosses his heart with his fingers and looks sincere.  He leads
     a reluctant Chris off.

                 I must be losing my mind.


        The auditorium is filled to near capacity with families, teachers
        and students.  Charlie, Todd, Meeks, Cameron, and Pitts find seats
        in the back.  They spot Mr. Keating a few rows over and wave at him.
        Beside him is Mr. McAllister.

        The lights go down.  A small musical accompaniment--panpipes,
        bongos, triangle--plays.  The curtain rises.  As the actors make
        their entrances, they are applauded by their friends and families.

        As the actors begin the play, Charlie notices out of the corner
        of his eye  Knox entering with Chris.  They find seats and sit
        down together.  Charlie shoots Knox a surprised lock of excitement.
        Knox gives a little nod.

                                                       SHORT DISSOLVE TO:

101     THE STAGE                                                     101

        Neil makes his entrance as Puck, he wears a crown of flowers.
        The members of the Dead Poets Society cheer loudly. For a moment
        Neil looks lost.  Todd crosses his fingers.

                                NEIL (AS PUCK)
                 "flow now, spirit. wither wander you?"

                                HIGH SCHOOL ACTOR (AS FAIRY)
                 Over hill, over dale, through bush,
                 through brier...

        Keating glances back at the Dead Poets and gives them the
        thumbs up for luck for Neil.  They acknowledge with gestures
        of their own.

                                NEIL (AS PUCK)
                 Thou speakest aright:
                 I am that merry wanderer of the night.
                 I jest to Oberon and make him smile
                 when I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile,
                 Neighing in likeness of a filly foal


        intently watching the show.  As Neil delivers his lines,
        getting laughs in the right places, Todd sits mouthing the
        lines with him, as if this might help Neil get through it.
        Neil clearly needs no help, though, and his performance is
        quite winning.  Charlie leans to the others.

                        (excited whisper)
                 He's good!  He's goddamned good!

        Someone from behind whispers '"Sssh."  Charlie whispers
        "sssh" back at them, then turns back and watches the show.
        Suddenly he does a double-take.  He sees:

        Mr. Perry enters in the rear of the auditorium, and stands
        alone beside the door.

                 Oh my God.


        Charlie indicates for the others to lock.  Todd and the
        others glance back and see Mr. Perry.

                                TODD (CONT'D)

        All turn back and watch the play, though they are now quite
        tense about Mr. Perry's presence.

102     THE PLAY                                                      102

        On stage are the characters of Lysander and Hermia.  Hermia
        is played by Ginny Danburry, who is fetching1y dressed in a
        costume of leaves and twigs.

        One turf shall serve as pillow for us both, One heart, one
        bed, two bosoms, and one troth.

                                GINNY (AS HERMIA)
                 Nay good Lysander.  For my sake, my
                 dear, Lie further off yet: do not lie so


        Charlie is looking through the program.

                 Hermia's Ginny Danburry.  Knox is crazy.
                 She's beautiful!

        Meeks holds his finger to his lips for Charlie to be quiet.

        THE STAGE

                                GINNY (AS HERMIA)
                 But gentle friend, for love and courtesy
                 Lie further off, in human modesty.
                 Such separation as may well be said
                 Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid,
                 So far be distant: and goodnight, sweet
                 Thy love ne'er alter till they sweet
                 life end.

        Charlie sits absolutely enraptured by her.


        As Ginny and Lysander play their scene, Neil stands in the
        wings looking out.  He spots his father sitting in the back of
        the auditorium.  There is no panic on Neil's face, however.
        His expression is calm.

        ON STAGE

                 Here is my bed.  Sleep give thee all his

                                GINNY (AS HERMIA)
                 With half that wish the wisher's eyes be

        Lysander and Ginny lie down on the stage and their characters
        go to sleep.  The musical accompaniment plays, beginning a
        musical interlude.

                                                             DISSOLVE TO:

HERE is where my copy of the script ends.  Pages are missing
The section below are just the cut sections from the end of the movie

        After the play, the boys (minus Neil) return to the cave.
        Cameron is conspicuously missing. Knox brings Chris and Charlie
        brings Ginny. Then Mr. Keating himself arrives at the cave,
        thanking Charlie for inviting him. Someone brought wine and they
        all raise their glasses in a toast to Neil.

                 Now we mustn't be glum. Neil wouldn't want
                 it that way. He did something special
                 tonight and worth celebrating. Let us join
                 with the howling night.

        Keating exits the cave. The others follow. Chris and Ginny look
        at Knox and Charlie.

                 Knox, what exactly is this?

                 You'll see.

                 I have to go home. Chet might call.

                 It's just for a little while. You promised.

        Charlie leads Ginny off. Chris reluctantly follows Knox. The
        moon is full, the stars are out, the night is clear and cold.
        Every tree is covered with icicles. A freeze has turned the
        otherwise barren forest into a wintertime marvel. Mother Nature
        has covered the world with sparkling diamonds. Keating leads
        the group up a wooded path to a spot on a cliff overlooking the
        creek. The boys and girls look around. It's an especially scenic
        place. All stand in silence for a moment, taking it in.

                 We used to meet here on special occasions.
                 Who would like to convene the meeting?

                 "We went to the woods because we wanted to
                 suck all the marrow out of life." Anybody
                 want to read?

        Keating begins gathering up some firewood. Others help.

                 Come on boys, don't be shy.

                 I have something.

                 The thing you've been writing?


        Todd's volunteering surprises everyone. Todd steps forward and
        takes out some papers from his pocket. He passes slips of paper
        to each of the others.

                 Everybody read this between verses.

        Todd opens his poem and reads.

                 "We are dreaming of tomorrow and
                     tomorrow isn't coming,
                  We are dreaming of a glory that
                     we don't really want.
                  We are dreaming of a new day
                     when the new day's here already.
                  We are running from the battle
                     when it's one that must be fought."

        Todd nods. All read:

                 "And still we sleep."

                 "We are listening for the calling
                     but never really heeding,
                  Hoping for the future
                     when the future's only plans.
                  Dreaming of the wisdom
                     that we are dodging daily,
                  Praying for a savior
                     when salvation's in our hands."

                 "And still we sleep."

                 "And still we dream.
                  And still we pray.
                  And still we fear.
                  And still we sleep."

        Todd closes his poem. There is a big applause.

                 That was great!

        Todd beams, taking it all in. As he steps down, he gets
        congratulatory slaps on the back. Keating smiles with great
        pride at his student's progress. He plucks a ball-shaped icicle
        from a tree.

                 I hold in my hand a crystal ball. In it I
                 see great things for Todd Anderson.

        Todd faces Mr. Keating, then suddenly, powerfully, they hug.
        They break, then Keating strikes a match to light the fire.

        The scene with Keating and the boys continues, interspersed with
        Neil's final scenes.

                 And now, "General William Booth Enters Into
                 Heaven," by Vachel Lindsay. When I pause, you
                 ask, "Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?"
                 "Booth led boldly with his big brass drum..."

                 "Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?"

        Reciting loudly, Keating takes off trotting through the woods. All
        trot after him:

                 "The Saints smiled gravely and they said,
                 'He's come.'..."

                 "Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?"

        The group follows Keating through the woods, past icy trees,
        over snow-covered hills, reciting Vachel Lindsay's poem.

                 "Walking lepers followed rank on rank,
                  Lurching bravos from the ditches dank,
                  Drabs from the alleyways and drug fiends pale--
                  Minds still passion ridden, soul-powers frail:"

                 "Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?"

         Keating stands before a towering, frozen waterfall. This gorgeous,
         icy sculpture seems to defy the laws of gravity. The night sky is
         incredibly clear. The people in the group are lit by moonlight off
         the snow.

                 "Christ came gently with a robe and crown,
                 For Booth the soldier, while the throng knelt down.
                 He saw King Jesus. They were face to face,
                 And he knelt a-weeping in that holy place."

                 "Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?"

        Keating stops. He turns and looks at the fields, valley, and
        the magnificent sky that surrounds them. All are out of breath,
        but exhilarated.

                 "We may or may not be the stuff of eternity,
                  people, but, while we are here, we are part
                  of a vast, awesome magnificence."

         He raises his hands to the heavens.

                 Don't waste a second of it, people. Exalt in it.

         He holds his head back and shouts to the heavens.

                 ALIVE!! ALIVE!!

        The others do the same. Shouts go up, cries of joy and ecstasy.
        Knox looks at Chris. Tears are streaming down both their faces.
        They turn to each other and kiss.

        When Todd learns of Neil's death, he runs to the bathroom
        instead of outside into the snow.

        After Charlie decks Cameron, there is a scene at the cemetery
        for Neil's burial. After everyone places flowers on the coffin,
        Mr. Perry walks up to Mr. Keating and says "I hold you responsible
        for this!"

        Todd refuses to sign the paper that implicates Mr. Keating in
        Neil's death.

                 That's all right! We don't need his signature.
                 Let him suffer the consequences.

        Nolan walks around his desk to Todd.

                 You think you can save Mr. Keating?
                 You saw it, boy, we have the signatures
                 of all the others. But, if you don't sign,
                 you're on disciplinary probation for the
                 rest of the year. You'll do work duty every
                 afternoon and every Saturday. And, if you
                 set foot off campus, you'll be expelled.