Fade in. Interior. Daylight. Two men sit facing each other on furniture which one of them isnít finding quite as comfortable as it looks. This one, the younger man, says,
"That bit near the end of the film. Michael Caine is asking Jude Law if he likes boiled eggs. In the morning - "
The older man says, "How can I tell you about boiled eggs in the morning?"
"Well, not everyone would choose to digress into that..."
"I don't get you. There's nothing wrong with a boiled egg in the morning, if you like boiled eggs. He's simply asking him whether he likes boiled eggs in the morning."
I'm interviewing Harold Pinter about his new film and enjoying a moment that would surely make me the envy of Pinter's admirers, as well as anyone else with a thing for the English language.
You could achieve a similar effect if, say, members of the Monty Python team were to act zanily in your presence. In short, Pinter is behaving eponymously.
I say I'm enjoying the moment, but the immediate experience of a real-life Pinteresque scene is, as you might expect, unnerving.
The playwright has adapted a thriller called Sleuth, a two-hander which was first filmed in the seventies with Sir Laurence Olivier and Michael Caine, and the effect has been to transform a piece of stagey if agreeable hokum into something altogether darker.
This is despite - or is it because of? - dialogue which explores the pros and cons of an eggy soldier first thing. The set-up is an ageing cuckold (Caine) waging psychological warfare against his younger rival (Jude Law). In time, homoerotic overtones also emerge.
Pinter continues, "I think there are quite a lot of complexities and subtleties in this relationship which reveal themselves as you go along and you can't trust what either of them say. That's what makes it so entertaining and mysterious."
His leading man is a bit of an authority on Pinteresque menace and inscrutability. One of Michael Caine's first roles was in an early Pinter work, The Room, in the sixties.
"I had a scene in it where a man comes in and he's blind and he's got a white stick," Caine told me. "And I take the stick from him and beat him to death with it. And I just drag the body out and continue with lunch. I said to Harold 'Why do I do that?'.
"He said, 'How the hell do I know? I just wrote it.'"
Caine says that he was only prepared to revisit Sleuth because of Pinter's involvement.
For his part, the Nobel Laureate buckled down to half-a-dozen drafts of a screenplay after he was asked to by Law, who is a friend and is a producer of the film.
"I was just interested in the idea of these two men caught in a trap of their own making," says Pinter.
Pinter is not one for discussing the writer's intentions
Stephen Smith's Newsnight report on the remake of Sleuth can be seen online and on BBC Two at 2230GMT, 21 November
Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian doesn't give the remake a great review on Newsnight but cinema audiences will be left in no doubt of its Pinteresque qualities.
Pinter himself has not enjoyed the best of health of late and says he doesn't expect to be writing anything new immediately.
"I'm happy to say I'm working on nothing," he says.
He recalls being propelled around the set of Sleuth in a wheelchair, piloted by the director Kenneth Branagh.
"It was like I was the camera and Ken was the cameraman. So we zoomed in to Michael and we zoomed in to Jude."
"How terrifying for them!" I remark.
"Not at all," says Pinter. "It did them the world of good."