A Serious Man script
A Serious Man (2009)
Synopsis: Larry Gopnik (Michael Stuhlbarg) is a physics professor at a 1960s university, but his life is coming apart at the seams. His wife (Sari Lennick) is leaving him, his jobless brother (Richard Kind) has moved in, and someone is trying to sabotage his chances for tenure. Larry seeks advice from three different rabbis, but whether anyone can help him overcome his many afflictions remains to be seen.

The wife holds his look, giving no ground.

The husband looks from wife to Reb Groshkover, apprehensive.

A heavy silence.

Reb Groshkover bursts into pealing laughter.

Reb Groshkover

What a wife you have!

He wipes away tears of merriment; the husband relaxes, even begins to smile.

Man

I assure you, Reb Groshkover, it’s nothing personal; she

heard a story you had died, three years ago, at Pesel

Bunim’s house. This is why she think you are a dybbuk; I,

of course, do not believe in such things. I am a rational

man.

Reb Groshkover is still chuckling.

Reb Groshkover

Oh my. Oh my yes. What nonsense. And even if there

were spirits, certainly. . .

He thumps his chest.

. . . I am notone of them!

Wife

Pesel always worried. Your corpse was left unattended for

many minutes when Pesel’s father broke shmira and left

the room—it must have been then that the Evil One—

She breaks off to spit at the mention of the Evil One.

—took you!

Reb Groshkover is terribly amused:

Reb Groshkover

“My corpse!” Honestly! What a wife you have!

Wife

Oh yes? Look, husband. . .

She steps forward to the reb, who looks enquiringly up at her.

. . . They were preparing the body. Pesel’s father shaved

one cheek. . .

As his eyes roll down to look at her hand, she draws it across his smooth right cheek.

. . . Then he left the room. He came back, and shaved the

other. . .

She reaches across to the other cheek, Reb Groshkover’s eyes following her hand—

. . . You were already gone!

—and drags her fingers across. A bristly sound.

Reb Groshkover laughs.

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Joel Coen

Joel Coen was born on November 29, 1954 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA as Joel Daniel Coen. He is a producer and writer, known for No Country for Old Men (2007), The Big Lebowski (1998) and Fargo (1996). He has been married to Frances McDormand since April 1, 1984. They have one child. more…

All Joel Coen scripts | Joel Coen Books

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