The Beast (1986) - full transcript

Helgi is a young man that dreams about becoming a writer and returns to his childhood home with his girlfriend Lára. While he's there he becomes obsessed with shooting a reindeer for unclear reasons.

''Vanity of vanities'', said the preacher
''All is vanity''

Of the making of books
there is no end

and much study is
weariness of the flesh

That which befalleth the sons of men
befalleth beasts

Even one thing befalleth them.

As the one dieth
so dieth the other

Ye they have all one breath

So that a man hath no
pre-eminence of other beast.

For all is vanity.

For who knoweth the spirit of
man goeth upward

and the spirit of the beast goeth
downward to the earth

All go into one place.

All are of the dust

and return to dust again.

Yes, there's been a lot of changes in the
fjord since you were last here, Helgi

Yes, I was still very small
when we went away.

I think I was probably about
5 or 6

Long time ago that was.

It was the summer your
mother met Wolfgang.

Long time eh?

I was going to ask you...

I wonder in those days was the
fjord deserted then?

Yes, nobody else lived there then.

I can't see why you never
came back before.

He promised to come last year.

He was going to stay off
here for the whole summer.

He didn't keep his promise
though, did he?

By the way, I'd like you two to
do me a favour while you're up here.

I don't want any strangers
fishing in the river.

If anyone asks tell them
its not allowed.

What sort of strangers?

You know all sorts of people turn up here
in the fjord these days.

Just keep an eye on the place, will you?

Helgi has other things on his mind now
that he's a 'writer'

I think you'd rather be left to
finish your book, wouldn't you?

Oh yeah? That's what I
came here to do.

What about the reindeer?
Seen any yet?

He hasnt talked about anything else
since we got here.

Yep and we've got permission to
shoot one of them.

Only one, mind.

See that, they call it the elve's rock
or worry stone

Your mother was really fond of
that rock, Helgi

She used to sit by it whenever she
wanted to get away from us.

The reindeer come up here in
the winter too.

You can see them sheltering behind
the rock sometimes.

I'll never forget the time Wolfgang
first went up there

He was trying to creep up on your
mother and give her a shock

He climbed up the rock, then
fell down and broke his leg.

Your mother had to nurse him for weeks
and thats how it all started.

Its how you came to live in Germany, Helgi
Its all because of that rock

Of course your father
took it badly at the time

but its only nature isn't it?

Can't fight against nature, can you?

Even the reindeer know that.

Eh, take it easy!

What have you got in this thing?

We've gpt to get it up there.

Where'd you want me to
put this rifle?

Back there in the corner.

Okay, fine.

You don't want me to hang it
on the line here for you?

While you're staying here you will never
point guns at people.

What the hell's the
matter with you?

Don't get so heavy.
I was joking.


I was aiming the gun at an imaginary
herd of reindeer.

Makes no difference.
-But the thing wasn't loaded even.

That doesn't matter.
-Why don't you tell him about the house?

The house?
Yes, yes.

Place was practically falling down
when I got it.

Yes well, do you
think its haunted?


Its aright eh?

Yes it is but only with ghosts that
people bring with them.

But Half-tongue, your neighbour will come
and haunt you alright.


Thats what they call the fellow who
lives at the top of the fjord.

He's harmless enough.

Hardly ever see him except
in the summer.

Keeps to himself.
Bit of a loner.

Cracked if you ask me.

You might see him a couple of times
every summer.

Always keep to the other
side of the river.

He's got some sort of thing about the
fishing rights though.

He comes out and shoots at
our notice out there.

Theres no stopping him and he
neve actually does any fishing.

A bit touched that one.

Door's getting a bit stiff.

Here we are

This is the generator I was
telling you about.

Pretty reliable.

It shouldn't give you any trouble.

Up to you if you want to
use it or not.

Its how we get our power out in
the fjords anyway.

Thing takes a bit of
handling, mind you.

What was that noise?

What? Its not switched on yet.

You're hearing ghosts.

Nah I'm only messing about.

When you hear it slowing down get
down here as fast as you can.

What is it I'm supposed to do?

You have to move yourself!

Boarder would like a word
with you, I think

The bulet is spent as
it happens.

But it makes no difference, right?

I can't see the old fool.

Hope he's not around.
-Hey, listen Balder


You'll come vist us on the boat, won't you?
If you have time?

Oh yes, I'd like that.

Problem is my brother and I
are going to be tied up

...Over the next two weeks.
-I understand.

We'll keep in touch anyway.

Oh, we'll keep in touch.

Oh yes, we will do.

Well, I'll come and collect
you anyway.

Thanks we'd appreciate that.

So that it then.

Right then, I'll be off.

Best of luck with the book
All the best.

Thanks for all the help, Bolder.

Look after yourself.

Okay then, be seeing ya.

Well then.

Now you just keep up on erm
your Beethoven.


Oh, Mozart!

Mozart, thats it.

And he can be difficult at times.

Don't let him put you off
your music.

Come on

Remember what I said.

Okay, I'll call and see if you
need anything.

Or you call me.

Sure you know how to
operate the radio?

Yeah I can work the radio

Well, it wouldn't hurt for Lara to
learn to use it as well.

See ya!

Hows it going?

Same as you

I'm a bit stuck at the moment.

Wanna come for a walk?
I need a break.

Its easy! Grip the rod like this
Then woosh, nothing to it.

Slowly Helgy!

I really like what you're writing.

At least I liked the
bit I read.

Why don't you try get it
published now?

Don't wait until you think
its ready.

Or you'll never get it finished.

You see, I'm still getting it
into its final form.

Too much self-criticism can
get you

into an extremely depressed state

No, it isn't ready.

Though some of its quite good
I suppose.

Didnt think I would but I
really like it here.

Only I wish I could see those
reindeer sometime.

Please. Give the reindeer
a break.

If you mention reindeer
one more time today...

I'll tickle you

Come here!

Okay, come right on over.

If you dare.


I'll count to ten.






Six, seven, eight, nine, ten.

Bloody bastard!



Come here!

Open up!

Open this door!

You bastard!


Take it away!

Only if you swear not to
tickle me ever again.

Throw that thing away.
-Not until you swear

Okay I swear.
-Cross your heart?

I swear cross my heart
I'll never tickle you.

I don't think that sort of
thing is very funny.

I don't think being tickled
is very funny.

You were still laughing,
weren't you?

Very funny.

Coming home now baby coming
right on home to you

You know I'm really
all washed up.

My feet are burnt out red, honey.
I'm really feeling blue

Look for someone to love.

All alone, its hurtin'

I've had enough of having
fun upstairs.

Alone, burnt out.

What am I gonna do with you?

This is Radio Reiker
the time is 10:50

And now: The Weather Report.

There is a depression moving past the
Faroes towards the Eastern fjords

and this region will experience unsettled
weather for the next 48 hours.

It gets harder every time.

That's a good sign.
I must be improving then

Meaning, I'm not.

That wasn't what I said.

But its what you meant.

Helge, whats got into you?

Relax, I'm only messing around.

Its your move.


And mate.

Helgy love?

Do me a favour.

Run outside and get my jeans off
the line before it rains.

Okay, I'll go in a minute.




Oh dear

You saying your prayers or what?

I found it upstairs.

Been down here long?

No, don't look at it yet.

I've got a few more things to
do to it first.


We going to have breakfast
together or what?

I had a really good sleep

My God, that coffee's hot.

I'm going to spend
all day practising.

You don't realise how tough
this exam's going to be.

Are you going to read that
Bible all day?

Are you thinking of
taking up theology?

I do so love you in the mornings
when you're slurping like that.

Louder please.
-Whats the matter with you now?

I said this coffee's too hot.

It doesn't mean I have to teach you
table manners, does it?

I suppose your mummy taught
you all that, didn't she?

In Germany
-She's got nothing to do with it!

I can't stand any more of you
going on like that!

I'm trying to concentrate!


Im not sure the kitchen table is
really the right place for you to work.

We've got to talk some time
haven't we?

Be reasonable,

you spend all day working at that
desk of yours anyway.

I mean, I haven't got anyone
else to talk to.

That might be someone looking
for a conversation.


We're with the coast offload
out here.

We planned on a bit of fishing in
the river over there.

Just thought we'd tell you.

Well, I really don't think the owner
would allow that.

Pfft, he's not gonig to know.

Well, I suppose not, but...

He did say I wasn't to
let anybody.

You better not, okay?

We'll only be an hour or two.

Come on, mate. Its no skin off
your nose, is it?

We'll be well away by nightfall.

Didn't you hear what he said?
Its not allowed!

Look at that.
He's got a bird in there.

Hello doll...
-Hey, Sveny,

We'll check her out later.

Why didn't you leave me
to deal with them?

Best to keep on the right side of
those sort of people.

You should have been more
firm with them.

You know Bolder told us not to...
-Alright I know all that!

I know what he told us.

But you saw what they were like.

You can't reason with
types like that.

Keeping a promise is always so difficult
for you, isn't it?

You're unbearable!

Its night.

And he rushes
through the streets

The flaps of his coat
spread out like wings.

One leg is soaking wet.

He's cold but born along a new
vision of life.

He's indifferent to everything.

Gloriously indifferent.

No love, no moments of
affection to hold him down.

He's alone in the world like
a frightened beast.

Trying to dig his claws into
everyone and everything.

He wanders through the town searching for
some spark of pure energy

in the wasteland of the city.

In a smoky dancehall he sidles up to a
girl he's never seen before.

He's about to regale her with some words
of clicheed flattery.

but the girl's eyes are cold and hard.

And instead he begins to mumble some
nonsense in his own language

Confusing everything together.

He throws some half-baked
insult at her.

She tells him to get lost

He thanks her

But they put up with eachother til the
dance is over all the same.

They hardly say anything.

They don't move.

How ingenius instinct is

How impersonal.

They go out into the cold windy night
pulling their hoods over their heads.

and without a word they go home
to sleep together.

In a small house in a small
forgotten backstreet

His clothes lie in heaps
all over the place.

Like his soul

A child sleeps in the next room.

And theres a grey moon outside.

He lies awake all night.

The girl's dark hair on the
pillow beside him.

And he tries to forget
the other girls hair.

Fairer, softer, more beautiful.

That once tumbled like gold
through his fingers.



Í'm sorry I'm late.

I had to do a bit of thinking.


I'm sorry.

Yes of course I miss Mama after she
left with Wolfgang.

But, I can hardly remember him.

I was so little.


Your father...

He told me...

He told me that...

You cried yourself to sleep
every night for two months.

He told you that, did he?

Then maybe he told you
of the time we caught Mama

and Wolfgang in the outhouse.

He told you that?


God, how I hate him.

Papa still wouldn't believe.

Wolfgang came over every
summer from Germany.

All the way from bloody Germany to do
research on the reindeer or something.

Only the bastard was researching
something else.

And Papa never
suspected anything.

He imagined that Wolfgang
was his best friend.

Bloody stupid.

Men amaze me

Unless it happens
right in front of them,

the fools never think that
anything's the matter

Men are so blind, arent they?

What do you mean?

I don't know how to talk about it.

I can't talk about it.

Look, what about your father?

He never really had any time for me
after they got divorced.

What about your mother?

We don't see eachother.

Hardly know eachother.

She thinks I'm frivolous
and irresponsible.

Think think, my mum and papa
its time I started earning some money.

Neither of them think I'm
doing the right thing.

I'll shoot!

I want to sleep a bit longer.

You've got a lot of energy

I just felt wide awake.

I certainly don't feel wide awake.

I want to.

I can tell that.

Shall we then?


Its not working.

Sit there and stare
at it a bit longer.

Maybe you'lll get some inspiration.

I'm sure the coffee will help you.

I can't do it.

See anything?



I wasn't looking

Isn't it going very well
at the moment?

Im getting really worried that I
won't finish it on time now.

Gettiing it finished on time

Why dont you stop worrying
and concentrate on the important thing?

The writing itself

Well, you know me when I've
promised to do something.

I always do it.

Come on.

I've never finished anything.

Not right to the end.

Why should it be any different
this time?

I'm beginning to get worried
about my exam.

I havent done enough since we've
been here either.

You'll do brilliantly.
You always do.

What the hell are they
doing down there?

Dont think about that now.

We should think about ourselves.
The two of us.

We've got another fortnight here.
Lets try and be happy together.

Yeah, lets be happy.

Alright then.

Lets play one more game of chess
before we go to bed.

Right, come on them.


Anyone there?


Helgy, I think the
old bloke's leaving.

Throw it down!



What the hell are you doing?

Helgy, don't you think we should get
in touch with Balder?

The bastard's leaving anyway.

Look, there he is over there.

But just in case he tries
anything else

He probably thinks he's
made his point.

What could be more ridiculous?

Than a teenager visiting
the place of his childhood?

The place wasn't much more than a couple
of rocks miles from anything.

But a child's first anger is
deeply ingrained.

And that anger takes root and beds intself
in the depths of the soul.

And that soul inhabit the young man.

He sets off into the world to live.

And when he least expects it that
anger wells up again.

And tears through the crude reality
he calls his existence.

And he will never be
free from this anger

which drains him and
leaves him helpless

Not until he rids himself of it
out in the street.

Like a beast shedding its skin.

Its an anger that returns
again and again

to the past in a series of
vivid pictures

which he can never exorcise.

Picture a young biologist,
an expert on reindeer.

who appears one day on the hill
above the farm.

and changes the little boy's
world forever.

Picture the scruffy little boy himself.

Running up the hillside
in futile anger.

Looking for a scapegoat,
someone to lay the blame on.

And the most vivid picture of all.

The boy standing on the mountain.

And watching the beasts

who somehow embody the fate of the
people at the farm.

While remaining all the time
unbareably innocent.

And so that day when he returned to
the place of his childhood,

What more natural that he should
look back toward the mountain.

Just as he always used to.

And what more natural than
that he should see

far away above the
craggy wide open spaces.

One of the beasts in the distance.


See something?

I'm not sure, Helgy.

Its our reindeer.

Where exactly?

Nah I think it must have been a
piece of wood.

You saw one, didn't you?

Let's go home.


Where's that?

Away from here.

What for?

You'd like to leave me wouldn't you?
Just like before.

Because you stopped
believing in us.

No, no its not that.

Oh no, oh no.

You miss all those phone calls
don't you? From that idiot!

Bjorg or whatever his name was!

That odious creep you took in
when I was in Germany.

Took pity on him, didn't you?
Oh yes

Trouble is, it wasn't
just once, was it?

Not even just ten times, was it?

You probably did it 100 times
with that creep!

When he started calling you again it really
got to you didn't it? You wanted him!

Whats the matter with you? You know
that's got nothing to do with it.

I thought we made a deal about that
didnt we?

Ah, the deal!

Oh, well you'd better
get your full value

You won't admit you're in love
with this half-wit

just as you won't admit that you...
You saw a reindeer!

Now you want to leave.
I don't care, do what you like!

What must I say?

Say you want to go home
to be with him!

Thats what you want
isnt it?

Say it, say it!
Come on!

Shoot yourself! Go on!
Go home if you want!

Me? Im not going anywhere!
I'm staying here!

Go on then!
Get out!

Get out! Get out! Get out!



Did you see the boat?

Did you see the boat?

Sorry, I can't hear you.

Out there in the fjord
A fishing boat.

In the fjord?
-Okay, it doesn't matter.

Forget it

Have you received any SOS from any
fishing boat in this area?

Yes, I'll do that
Bye now.



Fooled you there then.

I'm progressing.

No more to it than that
I'm afraid.

If it isn't the reindeer

then its some
mysterious boat.

Sathers Fjord?

Fjord base calling Sathers Fjord


Sathers Fjord?

Come in Sathers Fjord
Fjord base calling Sathers Fjord

Hello? Sathers Fjord
Fjord base here.

Sathers Fjord?
Sathers Fjord?

Come on!
What are you doing?

Fjord base here
Sather's Fjord?

Oh shit

Somebody's dead.

I know.

Too late now but we may
as well go on looking.

Men have split up.

Okay try up on the east side
We'll meet here later.

Fjord base, Fjord base.
Theidis Fjord calling.

Let me try.

Fjord base.

Fjord base.

Fjord base can you hear me?

Fjord base come in please.

Fjord base

Then one day he was standing in
a busy foreign station.

Hunched over, thin,
his mouth tightly closed.

A worn out version
of himself.

Finally read to make the
spiralling journey

to that warm point of origin.

The departure is announced.

The crowd rushes past

Gesturing, babbling
in a foreign tongue

...that fills his ears with noise but
remains incomprehensible.

Everything in this place
is so ordered.

So exact.

He smiles crookedly at
the nameless swarm.

The train leaves slowly.

Then its as if something is
holding him down.

As if there are chains
around his body

Preventing him from moving.

Across the platform

His familiar loneliness permeates
his whole being.

...and he has no hope left.

The train is moving slowly
past his eyes.

but he cannot see it.

Forgotten memories float up like
weeds on the seabed.

Weaving themselves into tangles

and numbing his brain with
the stench of decay.

He stands without moving
on the empty platform.

Now, nothing.

Decisions are the privelege
of the elite.

The train is accelerating now.

Quicker and quicker.

As the wheels scream
in his ears.

Last call for you.
That was the last call.

He moves frantically
after it

...As he feels his life
disintegrating around him.

He cries out desperately
for help.

But he's missed his last call

and despair is engulfing his soul.

Then the final comet passes

A young man in a worn-out
leather jacket stands on the platform

Before vanishing into the dusty cloud
of faceless people.

And what about this life.
Always leaves on time.

And there's no calling it back!

And you can add that
if you want to.

Oh but I forgot.

It makes no difference.

It doesn't matter if
you miss him, does it?

Let the train go, it doesn't
matter where you are.

You're still coming home.

To the same meaningless existence.

Oh yes and nobody gives a
bloody shit about it.

Not the slightest bloody
shit about it.

Sayders Fjord calling Rescue Centre.
Come in please.

Sayders calling, come in please.

Good morning, lazybones.

Going to sleep all day?

All right then.

I'll drink your
hot chocolate myself.

Guess whether its sunny or raining.

How about just calling it quits?

Just tell me what you're doing here.

Are you writing or are you
shooting reindeer? Which is it?


And you know the other reason
I came here, do you? Huh?

I want to be alone with you.
-Stop it.

I'm being serious!

And so am I

I mean, whats all this about a
bloody reindeer?

Theres something wrong with you.
In your head!

Whats this novel about, Helgy?

Oh, you know what its
about, don't you?



Its about you, isnt it?

Yeah, well. You know. Its...

He goes back to where
he used to live okay?

But it doesn't feel
like home to him.

Because he's rootless.

His girlfriend's with him out there.
He goes hunting.

Looks for reindeer and it all goes
tragically wrong for him.

But what are you
trying to say?

What am I trying to say?

Cant you see its about us?

And to us?
-All of us!


Its all in this bit. Look...

All of us were searching for a sign
to something, you see?

But none of us
ever find anything

Because we don't know
what we're looking for!

Thats the reason I'm not
trying to say anything!

I'm not doing anything that makes
the slightest bit of difference!

And nobody!
Nobody else is either!

Thats no reason to
throw it away.

Let it go.

But that which before
the sons of men

Before the beasts.

Even one thing before them.

As the one dieth.

So dieth the other.

Fjord Base, Fjord Base

Fjord Base.
Calling Fjord Base.

Fjord Base, hello?

Helgy, darling...

I think you ought
to eat something.

We're all fighting our own demons!

There's this great chapter in it
where the reindeers hit

He kills the leader of the herd
Its going to be wonderful!

Helgy, please try and eat something.

Do you have to be so boring?!

Listen to me!

Theres another hunter after the deer
Someone else.

He's made a mistake!

He thinks he killed a stag but no
He didn't shoot it, really.

Another man shot it and
he doesn't know.

Helge, at least have a sandwich.

You haven't eaten anything!
-That doesn't matter!

Theres no point to
anything now.

Point that the sandwich
is there to help?

I'm saying
''Nothing matters''!

But don't you want to know
what he's really shot?

I know already.

Sit down! Shhh!

Theres something out there.

I'm quite sure there's something...

There can't be anything out there!

Helge, stop it, can't you?
You don't know what you're saying!

Lets go to bed.
-You can go by yourself!

I'm going outside

Let me go!

Just for once I'm going
to keep my word.

-And you're going to help me.

Shoot, yes. Now go upstairs
and fetch the rifle.


I won't do it!

The rifle?




Sather's Fjord?

Fjord base calling Sather's Fjord.


Sather's Fjord!

I'll come straight back

Sather's Fjord?



Its alright, lamb
Taking you home.

-Helgy's in good hands now.

We're getting him to
hospital now.

Doesnt seem like an accident to me.

I heard a shot and thats
how we found out about it

There is a bunk made up for you
if you'd like to rest.


They found some wreckage from
the Seagull, sir.


Yes, its the fishing boat
that got wrecked.

Air control to radio
We're on our way back.

Landing at Sathers Fjord in
aprox 10 mins, over.

Radio to air control:
Message received.

We're at the Eastern end
of South fjord.

Cruising east by northeast
by 15 degrees.

Changing course, north by northwest
9 degrees.

Do you have any news about
Helgy Olaf, sir?