Edge of the World (2021) - full transcript

The adventures of Sir James Brooke, who defied the British Empire to rule a jungle kingdom in 1840s Borneo, embarked on a lifelong crusade to end piracy, slavery and head-hunting, and inspired LORD JIM and THE MAN WHO WOULD BE KING.

The other side of the world.

I wonder if I've gone
far enough.

Perhaps it's as my father said.

"No matter how far you run,

you can never
escape yourself."

[birds calling]

[waves lapping]

[Arthur] This is it?
There's nothing here.

It's unknown, Arthur.

Everything's here.

- Do we claim it for England?
- You go on ahead, Charley.

[both laugh]

You've wasted
your inheritance, cousin.

Exactly as your
father predicted.

Subu says Borneo's got Malay
princes and Dayak headhunters.

Yes, precisely.

And pirates.

I should like
to meet a pirate.

I wouldn't go in there alone.

If something happens,

there's no Royal Navy
coming to save us.


Unload the boat.

Charley, come on.

- Here, take this.
- [Charley] Whoo!

[exotic birds tweeting]


Charley. Bird-wing butterfly.


We may as well
take tea here.

[Subu] Yes, Tuan.

[leaves rustling]

- [gasps]
- [blades ringing]

Put it away, Arthur.

Tribes around here
are friendly.


I can see that.

[cicadas buzzing]

How long must one
smoke the heads?

He says until the eyes melt.

We are to be brought
to Prince Bedruddin,

who will decide.

Decide what, exactly?

I am Prince Makota,

the Governor of Sarawak.

And my cousin, Prince Bedruddin,
the emissary of the Sultan.

Do all English lords
speak the language of God?

I had a good teacher.

He said God speaks
in all languages.

If only men will listen.

- When the Sultan dies...
- Yeah.

...one of them will become
the Sultan of Brunei.

Allow me to introduce my cousin.

Colonel Arthur Crookshank,

of Her Majesty's army.

Good afternoon.

Do you come on behalf
of England?

I come on behalf of Her Majesty,
Queen Victoria,

whose empire is so vast
the sun never sets upon it.


Our Dayaks are simple farmers.

They have never seen
a White man.


But you have.

My cousin and I,

we were paid
five English sailors

as tribute by Lanun raiders.

From these Englishmen,
we have your words.

[call to prayer]

If you know our Quran

then you know that we must
leave you now and pray.


Just back away.

Back away...

[Subu murmuring indistinctly]

Don't worry, Charley.

I doubt they'll hurt us.

They think we're emissaries
of the queen.

The queen doesn't know
we're here.

They don't know that.

Patience, cousin.


[Bedruddin] Is that what
brings you here, Lord Brooke?


Or empire?

Neither, Sire.

We are on a voyage of discovery,
not conquest.

Then you are most welcome.

I thank you.

Might I be allowed
to go upriver...

take specimens of plants
and animals?

We will escort you
and your lords

to the Orang Kaya's village.

I, too, grant you permission.

[James] How long till they
figure out that I'm a fraud?

I failed at school.

The army.

Even marriage.

I can only hope to make
some great discovery here

that will bring credit
to my family's name

in a way that my conduct
in England did not.

God, this is paradise.

What's that smell, sir?

Hey, look. Hey!

Hey, look!

[Orang Kaya]

Lanun Raiders.


Protected by the rebel lords
who raid our villages.

It's a plague to our country.

Well, there you have it.

I'd like to see for myself.
Let's take a closer look.

Why? There's nothing there.

Draw the birds.
They're beautiful.

I beg your pardon, my prince.

Our purpose here
is to see and to record.

Very well, then.

[retches and coughs]


James, look.

By that tree.

I'll get him, sir.


[grunting and muttering]

Got him, sir.

[man shouting]

Charley, bring him here.

[man sobbing]

He says, "I'm not a murderer."
Snake People...

Murderer. Look at his hands.


It's all right.

Good. You caught one.

We don't know that.

He was hiding.

Of course, hiding.

We must stop this...


Is that the word?

Yes. That's the word.

To stop this,
we must take the rebel fort.

We understand your vessel
has many cannons, Lord Brooke.

Enough to defend ourselves,
Sire, yes.

We would like to see
these cannons.

[James] What do these smiling
princes want from me?

The last time I killed
for an empire,

the British left me for dead.

I should turn back,
set sail.

Instead, I find myself
sucked deeper upriver,

like the current truckling
at roots of trees

to drown the unwary
in its murk.

But I do not resist.

For here, I am a stranger,
even to myself.

[exotic birds calling]

[man chanting]

[drums pounding]

[all laugh]

[wings flapping]

My Lord Brooke.

You've brought a good omen.

The bird tells them

the man with the curious
white skin is a good spirit,

and not an evil one.

They don't know you like I do.

My father says,
meet my sisters.

- [laughing]
- [James] Charley.

They're his daughters.

No, no, no. No problem.

My sisters are not yet married.

Can lie as much as they wish.

- You want?
- [Bedruddin] It's Dayak custom.

His daughters can have
relations with anyone,

but only before marriage.

In England,
women do not lay up with men

before they marry?

Not if they get caught.

Ah. Now I know why
you come to Sarawak.


My cousin, Fatima.

Entrusted to Orang Kaya
as pawalian

for his loyalty to us.

A hostage.

A ward.

To raise as his daughter.

Captain James Brooke.

Allah reserves the beautiful one
for a king.

But you may have anyone else
you desire.

A shave, I think.


Very beautiful.




Happy to meet you.

My sister Fatima says,

"Your Semingat is very strong."

Do you have many sons?


Well, yes.



My sister asks, where is he?

With his mother.

Ah, my Lord.

What is Semingat?


A king's power comes from
his Semingat.

His life force.


Measured with wives, sons,

slaves, heads, conquests.

And all of these
are Orang Kaya's?



You like it here, Lord James.

In truth, Sire,
I am not a lord.

Well, they think you're a god.

- The bird...
- Well, you tell the bird

I'm just a traveler.

Thank you, cousin.

To begin the spear trading,

I welcome Lord Brooke
with these humble gifts.

I thank Prince Makota.

But I'm afraid I have nothing
to trade in return.

You're my guest.

- Arthur...
- Hmm?

...give me your pistol.

My father's pistol.

On your head.

Prince Makota.

For your kindness.

One more gift.


Tuan, please, do not interfere.

A great honor is being meant.

Oh, Christ!
Honor be damned!

Prince Makota, I thank you.

[villager sobbing]

But I would be more
greatly honored

if you gave me this man's life
as a gift.

You're looking for specimens?

[villager screams and groans]

Take this one.
It's fresh.

Savages, we call them.

The White man's burden
to save their souls.

I saw British mercy in India.

The army strapped prisoners
to the mouths of cannon

and blew them apart.

Keeps the savages in line.

- [knock on door]
- [Subu] Excuse me, Tuan.

- [knocking]
- [James] Come in, Subu.

Prince Makota is here.

Very well.

Bring him down.

[knock on door]

Prince Makota.

What a pleasant surprise.

You visit us.

I repay the honor.

A good likeness,
don't you think?

I think it is better to be
Makota's friend than his enemy.

I like you.

So must your queen.

To give you the great guns
on deck.

Oh, those are just little

In England,

they make it even bigger?

Oh, any size will do,

if you know how to use it well.

[Makota laughs]

This I tell my wives, huh?

How do you fire the cannons?

Will it not destroy
repulsive creatures?

First, you strike the specimens
into the hold,

light the fuse...

and fire.

Most ingenious.

Is that the word for such
a clever moving of things?


That's the word.

If you order it,

can ingenious sailors
move the cannons

to attack the rebel fort
upriver, at Belidah?


So it is agreed.

You will lend us your guns
and bring them upriver,

most theoretically.

Bedruddin will pay you
much gold.


I'm afraid no.

I'm here to study wildlife.

So you say.

That's a Brazilian
wandering spider.

Quite venomous.

It climbs into bananas.


But it's best to think
before you bite.

Lord Brooke.

Prince Makota.

So, what do White men call it
when princes lie to each other?


I never said I'd do it.

Not even for your collection?

[men shouting]

Like stars in the night.

You're learning Malay.



Excuse my interruption, Lord.

But we have not discussed
your price.

- You know my price.
- Yes, yes.

Mercy. A high price...

for four cannons
and three Englishmen.

Prince Makota,
I want your word.

No heads.

Of course.

No heads.

Jim, you recall
the most revered Madame Lim,

from our days in Singapore?

Hello, James.

Ah, Ling.

Forgive me.

Madame Lim.

I've brought your mail.

I thank you.


Excuse me.

I thank you
for your assistance.

How did you find us
way up here?

We have ears in all the islands,
and eyes on all of our friends.

So, Arthur...

news from home?

[Arthur clears throat]

A son.

We've had a son.

A son?

That must be very fine, Arthur.

She sends her regards.

I rather doubt that.

You ever think of her?


Of course.

And with greatest affection.

You'll be
a wonderful father, Arthur.

Why did I lie to him?

Because I can't confess

that I never
loved Elizabeth,

and was happy
when Arthur married her.

The only loving thing
I ever did for Liz

was to break our engagement

and run away
from the scandal

of getting another woman
with child.

Yes, I still think of Elizabeth.

But I pray she doesn't
think of me.

Come on, Charley.
Put your back into it, boy.

- Not this time.
- Faster! Move ahead!

[Arthur] Don't let him talk
to you like that.

Put your back into it, lad.

Faster, Charley.

You're catching him, Charley.
That's good.

Come on, Charley.


Come on, keep paddling.

I think we've seen enough, Sire.


There's something
I don't like about this.

Nonsense. Rebels are noble.
They won't harm their prince.

- Keep paddling.
- [James] Back oars, boys.

Back to the ship.
Back oars, Charley!

It's not yours to give me
orders, Captain Brooke.


Charley, jump! Tujang, jump!

Prince Bedruddin, jump.

- No.
- Jump!

- No!
- You have to jump!


[Bedruddin screams]



Whoa, whoa, whoa.
Gentle, gentlemen. Gently.

- [all grunting]
- Like a woman you love.

You fear very little, James.

I have little to lose, Sire.

But the boy,

he had his whole life
ahead of him.

I'm his prince.

He died with honor.

You think I was too proud
to jump.

But that's not the reason.

I can't swim, James.

[call to prayer]

All they do is bathe.

Five times a day.

You're enjoying this,
aren't you?

Yes, I am.

Do you mind?

Thank you.

[indistinct shouting]

I'll put the Orang Kaya
in charge.

He's got fire in his belly.

[Arthur] We can't upset
the natural order.

The princes rule here.

We're observers for
the Royal Geographical Society.

With a ship and guns
under a British flag.

My ship. My guns.

In India,
we were careful

to not interfere
in native squabbles.


That's how we got India.


Charley! Fire!

Tujang, no.

We attack together.

Prince Makota!
We're attacking the fort!

Where's your honor?

Is it dishonorable
to be clean?

Come, my bloodthirsty



We call it the Devil's box.

No roots.

No leaves.

A few days of beauty,
then they pass on.

- You know your plants.
- I know my country.



You wish to be alone.


I'm happy to be here.

With you.

England girls
do not make you happy?

It was I that made them unhappy.

- Are you happy now?
- Yes.

Because you want to lie with me?

Yes. Uh, no!
I mean, what...

I'm so sorry.
I-I-I didn't mean to say that.

- Forgive me.
- [giggling]

You are funny.

Always know what to say,
but now, no.

White tiger.

Come, drink with us.

Go to them.

But careful.

[indistinct chatter]

I thought you Musselmen
don't drink.

Oh, Dayaks do.

Chinese, too.

- It's tuak.
- It's tuak?

- Tuak.
- Tuak?

- Rice wine.
- Mm. Good.

And only this
they do together.


[all chanting]

- Charley.
- Arthur.

Just... careful.
It's strong.

And thus, we rule.

[exotic bird squawks distantly]

It's a curious siege.

More like a ballroom dance
than warfare.

[no audio]

They come close...

and never touch.

It's all just for show.

But for whom?

I feel I'm dancing to music
yet to be written.

A tedious gavotte...

that will end only if I step up
and take things in hand.

[men chanting]

I haven't properly thanked you
for saving my life.

It was my honor, prince.
Have a drink.

It is forbidden.


there are worse sins.




There's more going on here
than meets the eye.

You miss very little, do you?

For a man who worked so hard

to get me to attack the fort,

Makota doesn't much
want me to take it.

Think, James.

Does he really
want you to win?

What does he gain?

[men chanting]

If Makota wins this war...

the Sultan might make him
Rajah of Sarawak.

And that puts him
ahead of you

in line to be Sultan

when the old boy dies.

- But...
- But...

Makota has to be seen

to be the general
that wins the war.

Not me.

And certainly not you.


We use you.

You use us.

The British love to play
the great game,

but they never understand
that we are the kings

and you are the pawns.

Except you.


could be a king.

[men chanting]

[artillery explosions]

[men yelling]

[yelling stops]

This isn't a fort.

It's a bloody refuge.

Allahu akbar!


I had him in my sights.

[breathing heavily]

[gasping and whimpering]

[all, chanting]
Brooke! Brooke! Brooke!

Brooke! Brooke! Brooke!

Brooke! Brooke! Brooke!
Brooke! Brooke! Brooke!

Brooke! Brooke! Brooke!

Makota lied to me.

These rebels aren't protecting
the pirates.

They can't even
protect themselves.

Why do you come here,
to Sarawak?

Escaping, I suppose.

Looking for something.

[Fatima] So to you,
we are just an escape?



He loves you.

Lord Bedruddin.

on your victory.


Hardly a victory, Sire.

The rebels, the fort were not
what I expected.

Now I see why this war
has dragged on for so long.

The nobles fight Makota
because he can't...

or won't protect them
from pirates.

And I need someone I can trust
when I am Sultan.

A White man from afar,

with ships and guns...

whom all factions can follow.

That's absurd.

I'm just a traveler.

So you keep saying, Jim.

But there's gold
in Sarawak, Jim.

Coal, and all the spices
your ship will carry.

I don't care about gold.

Is it true what they say?

You were shot in the heart,
yet lived?


It was the lung.

Better the heart.

For Semingat.

That Makota fears,
most of all.

I'm not the man
you think I am.

Who of us is?

Good night, Jim.

Good night, My Prince.

These are for galley slaves.

And these...

These are for my harem.

- Orang Kaya.
- [Orang Kaya] Yeah?

You may also take one head
for each son,

and two for yourself.


- Allahu akbar!
- Wait!

We had an agreement.

But I'm a Prince.

We make new agreement.

Leave your cannon,
take your flag,

and leave with your head.

Makota, stop!

I insist.

You cannot insist,

You do not rule here.

Is this your decision, Tuan?

Prince Bedruddin,

you offered me Sarawak if I
defeated the rebels at the fort.

- I accept.
- What are you talking about?

Sarawak is mine.

Is it?

Your love for this Englishman

will be your death...


[drums beating]

Ali's wives.

They do this so your virtue
may rub off on his village.

A most sensible Dayak custom.

[translating] Datu Patinggi Ali
thanks you for your mercy.

He paid Makota 20 pasus of rice
and ten slaves in tax.

So how much more must he pay
in punishment

for their rebellion?

From now on, one pasu.

One pasu is only a peck, Tuan.


Patinggi Ali...

what is important to me

is your friendship
and your loyalty.

And there'll be no more
taking of slaves.


Datu Patinggi Ali...

Datu Patinggi Ali thanks Allah
for sending you

like a bird from heaven.

But he asks,

is the Rajah
a bird of passage,

who now flies home to make love
to his woman queen,

get more ships and guns?

Tell Ali my queen
has a husband...

and the ship and guns
are mine.


once the Sultan of Brunei
makes you Rajah...

will you fly away?

Are you asking for him,

or for you?

You run even from
a question.

Who would believe it,

to be crowned king
by the Sultan of Brunei?

The greatest empire
of spice islands in Asia.

Certainly not my father.

Nor anyone in England.

Certainly not myself.

[man speaking]

He who rules the world,

the Sultan Of Brunei...

decrees the White Rajah,

James Brooke,

ruler of Sarawak.

Obey him as you obey our Sultan.

If any will contest this,

let them declare it now,
or forever be silent.


Now you must
split his skull.

Do it, to be their king.


I won't rule like that.


Are you mad?
We don't belong here.

But I do.

You do not rule here.

You do not rule here.

You do not rule here!

You escaped the harem.


But not to join yours.

So you say now.

But once the mystery is gone?

With you it's just one mystery
after another.

Then another...

and another...

[knock on door]

[knock on door]


You must come. Quickly.

Uncle Arthur,
you don't mean that, sir.

I most certainly do.
Now come along.

- He needs us. You, most of all.
- He needs her.

His bloody muse,
or some such rot.

Where are you going, Arthur?



We're going home.

This is home.

For you and your
native princess,

it may very well be.

But it's not home to me.

It's no place for Charley.

You try and
civilize them, and...

Perhaps we can civilize him.

This pretending to be king
is just too much.

This is where I get off.

You can't have it both ways.

You must choose.


or them.

I have.

What happens
if she has a child?

You'll just run away again?

You should go now.

- Uncle Arthur.
- Leave it. Leave it.

Go, Charley.

He just misses his wife, sir.


I was given a sword

to rule a kingdom
larger than England.

But I have had enough
of killing.

If I rule as the British do,

I'd become the man I've spent
my life trying to escape.

But, Rajah,

since you do not allow us
to take heads,

how can I pay
for a second wife?

[James] Surely one wife
is enough for any man, Tujang.


How can I have only one wife?

Perhaps you can pay her in coin?

Subu, give them
two shillings.

[muttering ]

[coins clatter]

- Pounds, then.
- This is not good business.

I must unlearn

everything that I think
I know.

And embrace all that I do not.

Start anew.

Build a natural utopia...

where we love all living
things equally.

A case of murder
in the first degree.

Bring the accused.


[loud thud]

[James] But what do I do
when they kill each other?

[all shouting]

I've finally found home.

A family to embrace
this barefoot boy of Bengal...

who ran out his father's door

into the jungle...

to find someone
who will love me

as I am.

- [shouting playfully]
- [Tujang] Rajah!

Rajah! Rajah!

- Rajah...
- Tujang.

Look at this.

Carnivorous pitcher plant.

The Royal Society
calls it Nepenthes Rajah.

I discovered it.

Was it not here before?

[boat horn blows distantly]

[James] Must be the mail ship
from Singapore.

Is that Master Charley, Tuan?


Midshipman Brooke, now.

Let's open a bottle of wine.

We heard you jumped ship
in Singapore, joined the Navy.

Yes, sir, but I got leave
to come and give you the mail.

- Charley.
- Good to see you.

And you.

Now, will you take a drink,

or has the Navy
not corrupted you yet?

Oh, you know how it is, sir.

Beer for breakfast,
grog at noon,

- wine and port for dinner.
- Good lord.

I'm surprised they could find
their way anywhere.

- To the crown.
- [glasses clink]

Her Majesty's or yours, Rajah?


Drink twice then.

I suppose it's all a great joke
back in England.

The China merchants in Singapore
don't seem to think so.

They sent you this.


At last.


We'll use it tonight.

There's talk of
a knighthood, sir.

- For what?
- For making Borneo British, sir.

The French want Sarawak too,
and the Dutch.

Which, of course, makes
Parliament want us even more.


The lantern goes inside.

Here, read this.

"The President
of the United States

invites you to America
to sign a treaty

recognizing you as Rajah
of an independent Sarawak."

And there's this.

"A romantic adventurer
like Lord Byron.

Ladies sleep with his cameo
in their bosom."

The Dayaks will love this.

And that's a marriage proposal
from Angela Coutts.

Coutts Bank.

She's the richest woman
in England, sir.


we don't need England,
or America,

or Coutts bank.

You see...

I'm as rich as I can be.

Yes, sir, she's very beautiful.


And you don't know
the half of it, Charley.

She knows everything.

Dayak culture,
monsoon weather.

You see...

I'm in love.

With the country, sir,
or with her?

Drink twice then.

[glasses clink]



[Orang Kaya]

Again, Rajah. Again.

What is this, sir?

Chicken's feet, Charley.

- Chicken's feet?
- It's a Chinese delicacy.


[all laugh]

In Singapore, Uncle Arthur
made me eat a bull's...


[all laugh]

He said it's supposed
to help, you know, in...


Don't worry.

How is Uncle Arthur?

- To Uncle Arthur.
- To Uncle Arthur.

He sends his regards, sir.
He said... he said,

it's supposed to help you rise
to the occasion.

[laughter continuous]

[indistinct chattering]

A message, they said.

Snake People,
they've come to haunt us.

They swim up from the sea
to eat us,

like ghosts
with poison teeth.

Snake People?

They are Lanun Pirates.

The rest is just myth.

James. Life. Myth.

It is all one.

We can't row cannon upriver
until the dry season.

I'm going to send a scout.
See if he can find anything.

[James] I feel Makota's presence
behind this.

I sense his desperation...

building like a monsoon.

And he won't go to bed
until he has seen them all.


A man you'd follow
to the ends of the earth.

So did you.

And Colonel Crookshank.

Poor bastard.

I sent him to scout the Lanun.

They took his fingers.

It's Makota.

I'm to blame.

Is there anything I can do
to help, sir?

The Sarawak River.

Where we stand.

Where Makota and the Lanun

are attacking the Dayaks.

In monsoon, the river runs
so fast, it'll drown crocodiles.

We can't get up there
without a steamship.

I was thinking you might ask
the Navy for one.

I'm just a midshipman
on leave, sir.

And, well, they're not
quite pirates, are they?

Not in the Admiralty sense.

Not out at sea,
preying on British interests.

But I am British.

You've seen what the Lanun do.

You've been to a village.

[string instrument being played]

Your music's beautiful, Miss.

It's very sad.

I suppose I could ask
Captain Beech

to bring his steamship
from Singapore.

But why would the Royal Navy
care about Borneo?


Madame Lim's Hakka miners
have been hauling it up like mad

from Labuan island
all the way upriver.

And the British empire
needs coaling stations.

So we ask them to chart
the rivers of Sarawak

for a coaling station.

That just might work.

A steamship, you say?
For Borneo?

To chart the rivers
for a coaling station.

They're impassable
in the monsoon.

So why not wait
until the dry season?

Well, sir, there...

there's also the...

Yes, out with it, boy.


the Snake People.

The Lanun.

This is your uncle talking, yes?

There have been questions
in Parliament.

Talk of an inquiry.

He's not quite the thing, is he?

I do read the London papers,
you know,

as well as my orders.

And there is nothing in them
about Snake People.

But they're pirates, sir,

and they're preying
on British interests.

And, pray tell,

what interest has Britain
in strengthening your Rajah

if Sarawak is not part
of the Empire?

Well, sir, he's...

He's British.

So you want me

to take Nemesis,

the most powerful steamship
on earth,

up some jungle river
to fight Snake People?

The Rajah would be
very grateful.

Gratitude be damned, boy.

We want his coal
and his colony.

So just how badly
does Brooke need our help?

Well, sir, I...

I think you should go
and ask him.

Wake up, Rajah.

- [James groans]
- [Fatima giggling]

[lips smack]

[both laugh]

[distant thumping]

[soft thumping]

[soft thumping continuous]

[loud thud]

[shutters creak]

They were here.




Tujang. Where's Tujang?

Subu, where is Tujang?

I don't know.

Tujang! Tujang!

[Fatima screams]


[women sobbing]

[villagers speaking]

Divides the living
from the dead.


I will not leave.

You said Tujang
is no longer with you.

But he's here.

With me.

Tujang had a fire inside of him.

In my dreams he speaks to me.

"To have peace,

we must make war."

This is war!


God bless England.

Boarders at the rails.

Sir Edward,
we are honored.

- The pleasure's ours, Brooke.
- Thank you.


With a steamship,
as ordered.

Just in time. Bless you.


Come here, cousin.

Oh! You're back.

I missed you.

[woman clears throat]

And with Elizabeth.

Yes. With me.

Mrs. Crookshank,
if you don't mind.

I do beg your pardon.

Mrs. Crookshank.

Is this your
harem slave, James?

Do tell her
to take my wrap, dear.

We have no slaves in Sarawak.

Fatima is my love.

Say, Brooke,
can we get a drink,

or have you gone
all Mohammedan on us?

Yes, a drink. Why not?
Let's break the ice a little.

Does she speak at all?

Only to my equals.


We're going to need
a lot more whisky, Charley.

Yes, sir.

To Sir Edward Beech.

Captain of the Nemesis.

The leaders of Sarawak.

[Lim] I think we've met before,
Sir Edward.

Yes, yes.

Well, it's a wonderful place
you have, Brooke,

but we're all rather hungry.

Could you get your niggers
to serve us some dinner, eh?

Of course.

[glass clinks]

Well, I have
a little announcement.

In reward for his exploits

in what is to be
our latest crown colony...

I am to carry Mr. Brooke
to Windsor,

where he shall be invested
by Her Majesty, Queen Victoria,

as a Knight Commander
of the Bath.


Here's to...

Sir James Brooke, KCB.

- [Charley] Speech. Speech.
- [Arthur] Yes, speech, indeed.

[James] I thank Sir Edward
for the honor.

But I can't go home with you.

Because, as you see,

I am home.

Sarawak is a sovereign nation...

that I rule...

with the blessings
of its people.

Sovereign nation?

But I'm offering you...

Crookshank, talk to him.

Sir Edward, the Rajah is greatly
honored by your visit,

and by your gift
of your great steamship

to help us fight
the Lanun Pirates.

Lanun? I'm here for coal

and to take possession
of a crown colony.

You've consumed
half the earth, Sir Edward.

A feast of colonies.

Surely you cannot
thirst for more.

And in any case, I'm afraid,

Sarawak cannot become
your colony

until the Rajah declares it so.

He has narimba.

Yes, narimba.

A Rajah's right to dispose
of his country.

Rajah? Narimba?

If I chose,

I could destroy your fairy-tale
country in a week

with the Nemesis.

And why would you want
to do that

when you already have
an Englishman on the throne?

[thunder crashing]

What is that horrid smell?

Come along, come along.

Outside. Outside.


The Rajah hasn't seen them yet.

Surely, Sir James,

you must have
at least one evening

with your own kind.

Madame, they are
my honored guests.

Oh, the princes,
to be sure.

Now, shoo.

Mrs. Crookshank!

You are new here,
and most welcome.

But I do insist
you show respect.

Ladies, I believe
this is our cue now.

- Englishmen and their port.
- Really, Arthur.

You knew.

They brought you out here
to twist my arm.

How could you, Arthur?

It's time, Jim.
It's for the best.

No, it's not.

You know what things were like
before I came.

And what's changed?

pirates, slavers.

And they'll be here
long after you've gone.

You've gone broke trying
to save these people, Jim.

Come home.

Marry a rich widow.
Get knighted by the queen.

Let England worry
about Sarawak.

So that's it?

The scheme you've cooked up
with your fellows at the club?

He's gone mad, the poor bastard,
he's gone native.

Bring him back to England,
marry him, knight him,

and then we'll have
another colony.

I'm not mad.


You're just different.

[woman singing]

[distant laughter]

[distant singing]

We should let him
think about it.

I'm going with him.


She's the one.
The one you left.

I don't care about her.
I love you.

They humiliated me.

I gave myself to you.

All of me.


please come back inside.

I can never be English.

I don't want you to be.

I just want you.

You're one of them.

You cannot run
from who you are.


[Bedruddin singing]

What will you do now, Rajah?

Go to bed.

I have a fever.

I think Fatima
is waiting for you.


She went to Lundu.

She's upset.

This comes of treating her
like an Englishwoman, Jim.

A Malay wife would not
have been at the table.

The Lanun will attack soon.

They have arms, boats, gold,

and Makota to lead them.

Why not let this detestable
Sir Edward woo you a little?

Give England an island
full of coal and fever.

Like Labuan.

A small price for
a steamship, Jim.

You don't know them.


The Empire.

They don't want some of you.

England devours
all of you.

I was born in India.

I've seen it firsthand.

Better that than Lanun.

Kill the snake once
and for all, now.

Or leave.

But you must decide.

So, what do you choose?

I choose Sarawak.



Firelight dancing
on the river.

The sound of Malay voices
singing in my dreams.

All of it.



Definitely a fever.

Good night.

Ahoy, Chinamen! Chinamen!

[indistinct chattering]

[Bedruddin singing]

It's all just happening.

I can't seem to stop it.

Jim, look at me.

You're not well.

Come on.

[James sighs]


[overlapped shouting]

[no audio]

Honestly, fireworks at
this time of night?

Elizabeth, we're under attack.

- What?
- You have to hide.

- You can't leave me.
- I have got to find Jim. Come.

- Ridiculous. I can't...
- He needs me. The cannon.

- Come on, get in.
- What am I supposed to do?

Elizabeth, I'll come for you.

You must go to James.

Tell the Rajah
that my last thoughts

were of my love for him.

Here, go.

I'll come back.


Jim! The guns!
Where are they?

Jim! Jim!

The guns!


You're back in England.

With Elizabeth.

Jim, snap to it.

The guns, man!
Where are they?

Jim, the guns.

[Elizabeth screams]

[gasping and whimpering]

This is all Makota's doing.


I've got a pistol
inside the house.

No, no, no. Jim...



Subu! Over here!


Brooke's got into some
native squabble, eh?

We've got to hurry.

Oh, do sit down, Lieutenant.
You look a mess.

With respect, sir,
there's no time.

We've got to take the Nemesis
upriver to save them.



Her Majesty's steamships are not
for haring around the jungle.

But they're English, sir.

Sir James, the Crookshanks.
Women and children.

And the Dayaks.

Do you know what the Lanun
will do to them?

I am sorry for the Crookshanks,

but that's on Brooke.

As for Dayaks and Lanun,

one native's
as much as another.

- Sir, I have to insist...
- No.

The Nemesis
shall remain here.

We'll let them kill each other,

and then come in and pick up
the pieces.

Sir, I respectfully request
to go upriver

to pick up any survivors.

As you wish.

But not as the Navy.
You're on your own.

I say, I'm out of bacon.


Now, I am your Rajah.

No more English
to steal our land...

to rob our coal for the Navy.

Take away our gold

so their fine women

can have shiny things
in their ears

as they shoo out the niggers.

Where are your earrings now?

Get away from her.

You're mad.

I'm not mad.

- I'm a patriot.
- [Lim] Patriot?

- Wait till Brooke comes back.
- [Makota] He's here.

There's your white Rajah.

[Elizabeth shrieks]


Is anybody out there?


Subu, Subu, portside.

- Charley.
- [Charley.] It's me.

You're okay.

Lift him.

[Charley grunts]


It's all right.

Hey, hey.

Lift him. Lift him.

Are you okay?

[gasps and coughs]

[Charley panting]


He said to say
he loved you.


Elizabeth? Elizabeth?

They realized
you were alive,

they took all the prisoners
and left for Brunei.

Disappeared like ghosts.

Like ghosts.

[Charley] We didn't pass them
coming upriver.

They'll head east
through the mangrove.

We can catch them if we hurry.



[thunder rumbles]

It's all my fault.

It's too dangerous.

We've got to get you home.

It was Tujang's.

You can't run from this, James.

She's right, sir. Look.

I thought I was dead.

Leaving my past behind.

Instead, it was those I loved
who died.

And I have left them.

I see it clearly now.

I never needed a steamship
to find Makota.

He came to me.

He was always coming to me.

Malay guards.

Makota's men.

The Lanun caught them stealing.

Makota thinks
he can control them.

Lanun care only for the Lanun.

[waves crashing distantly]

They're over there, listen,
in the cove.

[drums beating distantly]

Let's get the Royalist.

We can anchor up
beyond the reef,

in cannon range.


It's too bright.


I see him...

out there alone
with the Lanun.

Fighting over the spoils.

Once they devour the prisoners,

they'll fall on him
like ravening beasts.

I've been living in a fantasy
of my own making.

To rule the jungle,
I must love the jungle.

All of it.

The beauty...

and the blood.

He's not waiting for me
to kill him.

He's waiting for me
to save him.

[blade slices]

Too weak to kill.
Too weak to rule.

[all shouting and whooping]

I surrender.


Please. Please.

[women screaming]



No! No!

[all screaming]

[all yelling]

[Makota screams]


[seagulls squawking]


And so I am ruined...

but free.

[all, chanting]
Rajah! Rajah! Rajah!

Rajah! Rajah! Rajah!

I'm not ready, sir.

You're the boy
I used to be, Charley.

I'd rather be the man
you are now.


You don't want that.

[crowd, chanting]
Rajah! Rajah! Rajah! Rajah!

Rajah! Rajah!
Rajah! Rajah!

Rajah! Rajah! Rajah!

[theme music plays]