American Madness script
Synopsis: During the Depression, the bank owned by generous Dickson (Walter Huston) is barely staying afloat, and things get worse when $100,000 is lifted from the vault. Fingers are pointed at reformed crook Matt (Pat O'Brien), who got a job and a fresh start from Dickson. The innocent Matt can clear his name by admitting that on the night of the robbery he was breaking up a tryst between Dickson's wife and another teller. But this revelation may crush Dickson, and Matt's conscience plays tug-of-war.

They ad-lib agreement.


Shhh! Nix! Here he comes—


CAMERA PICKS UP Matt Brown, the chief teller, as he strides

briskly in and begins turning the combination dial to the

main vault. He is about twenty-six, a clean-looking,

personable youngster. Several of the tellers are standing

close to him, looking on.


How are you doing slaves?


Hello, Matt. How're you Matt?

Matt begins to work the combination of the main lock.


(with his back to


Say, did you boys ever hear the

story of the pawnbroker with the

glass eye?


No Matt, what is the story about

the pawnbroker with the glass eye?


(as he continues to

fiddle with the


Well, I'll tell you. A fellow went

into this shop to pawn his watch.

The pawnbroker said, "I'll give

you $50 for it, if you can tell me

which is my glass eye." The fellow

said, "All right, I'll do that.

It's the right one." The pawnbroker

said, "That's correct. But how did

you know it was the right one?"

The fellow said, "well, it's got

more sympathy than the other one."

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Robert Riskin

Robert Riskin (March 30, 1897 – September 20, 1955) was an American Academy Award-winning screenwriter and playwright, best known for his collaborations with director-producer Frank Capra. more…

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"American Madness" STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 16 Jan. 2018. <>.

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