2b 1901 ADIEU MA VIE, ADIEU GUSTAV
Vienna, 1901. Alma and Gustav Klimt, the founder of the Vienna
What's the matter with you? Did I do something wrong? Alma,
stay here! Did I say something that hurt you? ... Alma!! Hold
it! Why are you so angry with me all of a sudden?, Remember,
Alma! Remember yesterday, won't you! Please, Alma! Have you
forgotten already? Yesterday everything was fine, so good
between the two of us, and now, all of a sudden...? Please
don't run away, Alma! ... At least say something! What did
I do to deserve this. How could you change so brutally ? Alma,
how can I understand if you don't speak to me? What deadly
sin have I committed?
Gustl!« Is that an answer? Is that supposed to console
me ? For what? Being poor. I know I'm poor. In every sense
of the word. You've always made it a point to remind me how
unimportant I was, how little I have. I'm a needy, unsightly,
to top it all off, now I'm ridiculous . I am! You said it!
You can't take it back. it doesn't make it any easier for
been such good friends? Let's leave it at that.
friends"? Come on , are you joking, Alma? We kissed each
other. Please don't forget that!
once, Gustl. Just once!
once"? "Once"?! It was the first time, don't
forget that! It's the most intimate act there is, Alma! Far
more intimate than the way Zemlinsky keeps pestering you with
his fumbling and groping!
you have to see the difference , my God! - Or is it because
I'm not a musician? That's ridiculous! Your father was a painter!
What could be more natural ...
it, Gustl! I'm warning you!
compared me with him often enough.
ALMA I was
you weren't. You weren't joking at all!
similarities have never interested me.
but they do, my dear, in fact they interest you a great deal!
More than you think! I know you well enough to be aware of
that. You're after money, talent and fame...
have talent, and you know it . And you've got genius.
not sure of that any more.
you need more compliments? You're a genius, Gustl. I can assure
you of that.
Don't leave me! I want you. I need you. I've got to have you,
do you understand?! For ever! I want you for ever. You understand
me?! - Don't let me beg like a little child. Do you really
have so much to give that others always have to beg?
fine, I have nothing. I have to beg!
it! Stop it right now!! I can't bear it! Do you understand
me?! Stop humiliating yourself right now. I can't stand it.
You must never, do you hear, never humiliate yourself in front
of me. You should never, never, never beg for my love!
you don't give it to me -
the most deadly killer of love, don't you understand that?
If someone asks for help, you shouldn't give it to them. Because
that means they aren't worthy of it! Why can't you see that?
If a man asks me for something - if he begs for it - then
to me, he's dead.
Am I dead now?
are doing all you can to make it easier for me.
make WHAT easier?! To make WHAT easier?!
ALMA I have
an awful dilemma.
there is someone. Who is it? - Who is it? I want to know his
Why Zemlinsky? But you've got him already?!
you idiot! I'm experimenting.
I'm just experimenting with myself: I whisper »My love«,
and it's always Zemlinsky's name that comes first.
whose name comes second?
can smell him on you. What has he got that I haven't? Is he
younger than me? Better-looking? Richer? I thought you didn't
attach any importance to external appearances? - Is it Dr.
Muhr with his sacks of money?
is it then? - You can't fool me, you horny little bitch. You
want to sparkle like a star in the Viennese sky. For that
you need a man who's handsome, rich and respectable. - What
are you laughing at?!
handsome Man!« Oh, God... If you only knew!
he isn't handsome? Then he must be very rich.
isn't rich either.
he must be famous.
stop it. You're only making everything worse.
he famous? World famous?
- Who is it?
beg your pardon?!
can't bring herself to pronounce the name properly:) ' Stamlll...
this nonsense. Who is it?
ALMA I told
you. Now leave me in peace, at last!
make me crazy! (imitates her:) «Stamlll» Who's
that supposed to be? - I want to know now, dammit! Who is
it? Spell it out for me!
Stop it. You're getting on my nerves. Stop torturing me!
torturing you?! You're torturing me! Who is this man? I want
to know who it is! God dammed!!!
It's Gustav Mahler.
What?! - No! No, you're kidding! It can't be... You don't
mean... Gustav Mahler? That old fart?!
would have to say that.
my God! He could be your grandfather!
could not be her grandfather. That's tasteless.
forty-two. So what?
He's twenty years older than her!
loves you? That old, wrinkled, dried-up herring, that haemorrhoidal
ape? Terminally ill, debt-ridden and impotent? Eats nothing
but wholegrain bread and fruit, and that's exactly how he
composes, too! That tasteless smearer of notes...
he's not a Beethoven, but he has some talent...
a Beethoven«?! Tell me, are you totally crazy?! He's
a sniveling scribbler of music!
not true. His Lieder -
Lieder! What do you know about them. ?
sent them to me.
so it's come to that has it. ! You've taken it that far already?!
down, I'm not saying I'm enthusiastic about his work. But
some of his Lieder
it, will you! No-one in the world will believe you when you
say that! As a composer he is a nothing, , and you know it!
It's all pretension, posing and posturing! Alma! How can you?
You're so intelligent, you have such refined taste. Your own
music is far superior to anything this pretender ever composed!
Alma, in 22 years you've composed better things than Gustav
Mahler will cobble together in 200 years. Any one of your
Lieder reveals more musical talent than all of his symphonies
not his music. His music leaves me cold. It doesn't touch
my senses at all, but - but him! Him! It's him that fascinates
me. Only him. That's it. Nothing else. It's ... I don't know
how to say
sure, I know. The inexpressible , that »certain
something«! That »je ne sais quoi«! - And
then there's his position as Director of the Royal Opera.
It's true, isn't it? He occupies a key position in Vienna's
musical life. To be his wife means glamour! Power! Status!
Don't cheat yourself, Alma. You little fool! All you want
to do is sit on the hurdy-gurdy, all dressed up, with a little
red cap, a bowl of money in your hand, and Mr Mahler grinding
the organ! While all Vienna dances to your tune! But not with
me! Not with me!!
Suddenly Klimt throws himself at Alma, trying to embrace
and kiss her:
Alma! Come here, come to me!
it! Stop it, Gustl! No, don't kiss me! Gustl... Leave me...
alone ! Don't touch me ...! Don't you dare ... Go away!! Go
... away!!! (pushes him away and spits out) Urrgh! If only
I'd met him just three years earlier, my lips would never
have been tainted by yours. !
Now I understand you, Alma. At long last. It took me a long
time. Your boundless vanity, your craving for pleasure, your
ridiculous fantasies! You're dead! You're lost ...
the contrary, my dear. You can keep your advice to yourself.
I won't need it any more. I will love him, my whole life .
And I'll take care of him. And I will compose. I will even
conduct! This man is pure oxygen for me! You can catch fire
if you step too close to him!
what about me? What have I been for you?
It burns too, but it's stinkier.
! Get out of my sight! Fuck yourself to fame and
glory! That's what you were born for!
not for you to judge, thank God.
ma vie, adieu mon coeur, adieu mon espérance! You will
become the most important woman in the musical life of Vienna!
Enjoy it! Go to your old Methuselah. Go to your Gustav! When
you're fed up with the wet lips of your old prune , join us
for a drink. You're always welcome. I have to drown my sorrows
and break the news to our friends. All I need is a good drink,
and some juicy jokes. Adieu Alma!