(not for publication)
“….we have to believe we are magic,
nothing can stand in our way….”
Seated in the rocks at the beach playing a song on his clarinet is a middle-aged man, Danny McGuire (GENE KELLY).
In another part of the city, young Sonny Malone (MICHAEL BECK) is working on a painting. Angrily, he rips the work to pieces,
tossing them out of the window.
As the torn pieces fly through the air, they make their way to a wall covered with a painting of the nine Muses. When the pieces
touch the painting, the figures of the nine women suddenly come to life, stepping out of the wall….
“I’m alive, and the world shines for me today,
I’m alive, suddenly I am here today….”
The beautiful young women begin darting across the landscape, heading everywhere. One of them is blonde (OLIVIA NEWTON-
“….seems like forever and a day,
though I could never feel this way,
is this really me. I’m alive, I’m alive….”
She rollerskating on the boardwalk adjacent to the beach, as though she were on the wind. Up ahead, Sonny is walking alone.
She skates up to him. The Muse kisses him. Before the startled Sonny realizes what has happened, she has disappeared.
That same day, Sonny is forced to return to his old job at Airflo Records, where he reproduces album covers for display. He
hates the work but must do it to support himself. Sonny has one of his typical run-ins with his boss, Simpson (JAMES SLOYAN),
who wants assembly line work, not creativity.
Sonny’s first assignment is to reproduce a record album cover of a beautiful woman against the background of an old Art Deco
auditorium. The woman, to Sonny’s amazement, is the beautiful woman who kissed him. Of the several people he asks, no one
has any idea who she is; not even the photographer (AHARON IPALE) who took her picture.
Sonny returns to the beach where he first saw her. There he meets Danny, playing his clarinet on the rocks. As the two men talk,
the beautiful young women goes gliding by. Sonny gives chase, but she always remains just out of reach. He almost catches her,
and instead falls from the pier into the water.
Once more, she disappears.
Danny helps Sonny out of the water. Now, more than ever, Sonny knows he must find her.
As he heads home, Sonny finds himself in front of the auditorium on the album cover, which he had earlier been painting. He
goes inside the building. It is deserted.
He stands there in the emptiness. He hears a song coming from nowhere….coming from everywhere…
“….come take my hand
you should know me
I’ve always been in your mind
you know that I’ll be kind
I’ll be guiding you….”
And then skating out from the shadows. There she is….Beautiful….Achingly beautiful. Sonny speaks to her. She says, with a
mysterious smile, “We’ll see each other again.” She begins skating away. “Bye, Sonny.”
….and if all your hopes survive,
destiny will arrive,
bring all your dreams alive
He asks her name.
“Kira….Kira….Kira….” echoes through the dark, empty space as she disappears into the shadows. Sonny stands there alone in
the deserted auditorium.
At work the nest day, Sonny argues with Simpson about spending so much time painting Kira. Copy the covers, he tells him, stop
seeing more in the painting than actually exists.
Sonny goes to a record store, The Platinum Palace, to display some album covers. He runs into Danny again. The two men
discover they both love music. All kinds of music. From Glenn Miller to rock ‘ roll.
Happily carrying his new purchase – a Glenn Miller album – Danny invites Sonny to his house. It’s palatial. Danny is not a clarinet-
playing bum at all. He’s a successful building contractor. But he was in the music business years ago, and he loved it with a
passion. He still dose.
Those were great years, he remembers. He played with Glenn Miller, and knew all the greats. Then he went off to start his own
club. Danny McGuire’s. Eventually, he gave it up to join the family construction business.
He quit, he says, because of a woman. In the background, a female vocalist is heard on the stereo singing a 1940’s big band
arrangement of the standard, “You Made Me Love You.” Danny was in love with the band’s singer. One day she left and never
returned. That was when he lost all interest in the club. Sonny looks at photographs in the Glenn Miller album. The band singer
looks remarkably like Kira.
Danny still has one dream left. He wants to open another club. It has to be special. Really unique. He asks Sonny to help him find
a place. Sonny’s an artist, he says. He has a good eyes. Saying he’ll think about it, Sonny leaves.
Alone in his huge, beautiful appointed living room, Danny finds the past alive for him again. He remembers the music. He
remembers the club. He remembers the bandstand and her – dressed in a WAC uniform, her long blonde hair swept up under a
military cap – singing….
“….whenever you’re away from me
Wherever you go
You’re never far away from me
I want you to know….”
He remembers his love. And as he remembers, Kira appears, and the two sing, and then they begin to dance….
“….I only have to close my eyes, dear
And suddenly I’m where you are….”
Then he’s in the present again. The past is gone, as empty as his two arms which had been holding Kira just moments ago.
That night, as Sonny is painting at Airflo Records, Kira suddenly appears to him. He tells her it is the first time he’s painted
something he cares about – her. Sonny takes her into a recording studio, where magical effects can be achieved by flashing all
sorts of pictures on a wide screen behind them. Only the biggest rock groups record there he says. They use the picture
backgrounds for inspiration. “Inspiration,” she says, “Sounds perfect.”
They go into the control booth, and Sonny turns on the knobs and panel lights. The background begins changing behind them.
“….she walks in I’m suddenly a hero
I’m taken in, my hopes begins to rise….”
They move out of the booth and begin a dance on skates. Scene changes around them as they dance together against the
magically changing backgrounds – skyscraper, a oasis, a rainstorm….
“….why do I feel so alive when you’re near
there’s no way any hurt can get through
longing to spend every moment of the day with you….”
Breaking the mood, an indignant Simpson appears. Sonny and Kira skate hurriedly out of the studio.
As they stroll together, Sonny tries to learn more about her. Kira, though, is evasive. She guides them to the old auditorium. She
says it would be perfect for the new club. Despite its present appearance, it could be anything Sonny and Danny want it to be. It’s
all in the dream, she says.
For Kira, dreams are easy. For Sonny – he doesn’t know what to believe in.
Sonny brings Danny to the auditorium. At first, Danny dismisses it outright. But it does have something. Soon, each of the men
begin to visualize the club.
Danny seems it as all 1940’s – with a bandstand, and zoot-suited dancers, man and women in service uniforms and a trio of
“….forget about the blues tonight, sweet thing
forget about the rules tonight, sweet thing
I wanna dance with you
until the sun comes creepin’ through….”
Sonny envisions the club differently – the style is definitely the 80’s. He sees a group, like The Tubes (THEMSELVES), with
dancers in outrageously colored costumes. The music is electrified rock:
“….lover, I want you to know
I won’t take a back seat
ain’t willing to let you go
I won’t take a back seat….”
Their separate visions tale shape before their eyes, and than miraculously merge into one.
“….I want to dance with you
----got some dancin’ to do----
….I want to dancin’ with you
----got some dancin’ to do----“
It’s perfect. It’s Danny’s dream come true. And Sonny’s. The 40’s meet the 80’s.
Danny wants to go for it, but he had one condition: Sonny must be the partner. After some hesitation, Sonny agrees. As they
consider a name for the club, Kira appears, meeting Danny for the first time. Or is it?
“Don’t I know you?” he asks
Smiling her cryptic smile, Kira recites from Coleridge’s poem:
“In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure dome decree….”