Ad Vitam (2018–…): Season 1, Episode 5 - Épisode 5 - full transcript

This science fiction series is about
a future society and its suicide cult.

It may be unsuitable if you struggle with
these themes. Viewer discretion advised.



[ominous music]

[Han] This is a symbol
of membership in a pro-suicide cult.

This group was responsible
for the Olympic Stadium tragedy, 23 dead.

The first collective suicide.
The one that launched the movement.

[Darius] When did you decide that killing
yourself was the right thing to do?

That it would teach the world a lesson?

-I was like them.
-Try again.

-[boy] Our day is coming, Nahel.
-I'm ready.

[Darius] Did he die
that night at the stadium?

[Christa] How did you survive?

Did Caron survive, too?

-[Christa] I need a weapon.

-Who's it for?
-None of your business.

I haven't given up, Nahel.

[Berti] Few places remain
where nothing is expected of minors.

Could you give a list of names?

No. No names, no addresses.
It's against our philosophy.

What's your problem with minors?
Who gives a shit if they top themselves?

[Mr. Vanghen] The truth is,
even if no one dares utter it...

is that we no longer need children.

[electronic music]

-[Christa] I need three hours in town.
-You have three hours.

-What the fuck got into you?
-[Lesky] I don't know, I'm sorry.

[ominous music]

[music fades]


[easy-listening rock]


[music continues]


Let me see.

[father sighs] There you go!

It must have been the exams.

-[mother] You feel less stressed, right?
-Yeah, maybe.

[girl] Is it every week now?

[mother] That's the Ministry of Health's

[father] With early and regular checks,
there's less risk of incompatibility.

[girl] Every week, that's crazy!

[mother] Two centuries ago,
they probably said that about showering!

It's called progress, Léa.

Have you told Dad about showering?

[mother laughs]

-[Léa snorts]
-[music fades]

[male newscaster] The riots
continue for the fifth week running

in all major cities.

Last night, once again,
like every night for the past month,

they took to the streets.

Aged 25, 20,

sometimes 15 or 16, boys and girls--

-[mother] I don't know what they want.
-[father] No wonder, neither do they.

-They're being manipulated.
-[Léa] Oh, Dad!

You can do better than just repeat
what the media say without thinking.

[Léa] What do you want to do?
Force them to regenerate?

What a beautiful democracy...

What do you think, Virgil?

-[Virgil] Huh?
- [Léa] This concerns you the most.

I mean, I...

I have no idea.

Actually, he's right,
there's nothing to say.

-[mother] Have you finished?

[Léa] Thank you.

-[Léa] Do you want some?
-You know very well I'm not allowed.


-[Léa] Another nine years, right?
-[clattering continues]

If you like, you can come
and live with me after your regeneration.

Yeah, why not?

Are you sure you're OK?



A friend's waiting for me.
We're going to revise together.

Virgil, you shouldn't take this
so much to heart.

I know your health
and your future are important, but...

you have the right
to be like all those youngsters.

[Léa] To be angry.

I screamed in the desert
and no one answered.

[Léa snorts] What?

I'm off, I don't want to be late.

[retreating footsteps]

[owl hooting]

[insects chirping]


[wind howls in the distance]

[labored breathing]

[boy] Nahel.


Uh, I waited for Christa.

She didn't turn up.

The absent don't matter.

You're here. Are you ready?


[Caron laughs quietly]

They're coming.

[low rumbling]


[Caron] Look at each other.

Look at each other in the eyes.

[echoing] Be proud.

What we're going to do tonight...

will change the face of humanity forever.


your fathers, your mothers...

your brothers, your sisters...

will awake to a better world.

A world in which lies
will have been exposed once and for all.

And they'll owe it to your sacrifice.

[Caron] Thank you.

[all] There is a time for everything...
and a time for each thing beneath the sky.

A time to plant...

and a time to pluck.

A time to weep...

and a time to laugh.

A time to moan...

and a time to dance.

A time to give life...

and a time to die.

[Caron sighs]


We refuse to walk in the footsteps
of those who are lost.



[gunshots continue]

[reverberating gunshots]


[soft moaning]

[Caron sighs]

-[boy whispers] Caron...
-[echoing clang]

[moaning and groaning]

[labored breathing]

[low rumbling]

[moaning and groaning continue]

[ominous music]

[boy whispers] Caron...

-[boy whispers] Caron...
-Be quiet, please. Shut up.

[Caron whispers] Please shut up.


[music fades]

[echoing footsteps]

[melancholy music]


[music continues]

[music continues]

[music continues]

[distant beeping]

[woman] What's your name?

[music fades]

[boy sniffs] Virgil.

[woman] Virgil. Listen, Virgil.

I need you to tell me everything,
from the start.

[Virgil mumbles]

I was going...

I was going to a friend's to revise.


I cut across the Olympic Park.

And I heard...

what sounded like firecrackers or...

or detonations.

So, I ran and...

and I saw them in the stadium.

They were all there...

lying in their own blood.

[low rumbling]

[Virgil] There were dozens of them.

-[Virgil] Doz... Dozens of dead bodies.
-[rumbling fades]


[Virgil sighs and gulps]



[distant sirens]

[sirens get louder]

[sirens fade]

[insects chirping]

[officer whispers] That's him.

[officer] Virgil Berti?


Do you mind coming with us?

Since yesterday, he's been alternating
between blank phases and agitated raving.

He seems to be praying.
We can't make out all of it.

We sent for a priest.

His brain is damaged.

At his age, regeneration is impossible.

You're the last one who saw him conscious,

so the doctors think seeing you
might trigger something.


Trigger what?


[beeping continues]

[consultant] Léonard?

[consultant] Léonard?

This is the boy who brought you here.

The one who saved you.

Speak to him.

[ominous music]


[beeping continues]

[Virgil swallows] Do you...

Do you recognize me?

I'm the one who, uh...

who brought you here.

[Léonard whispers]
I saw beyond the world.

And I came back.

-[Léonard moans]
-[consultant] Can you repeat?

[Léonard] You will be judged.

You will all be judged.

[Léonard] The rains will pour down
and wash away our sins.

[beeping continues]

-[Léonard] He has opened His doors...
-Wait outside.

...and named His guides.



Could you help me, please?


-Help me.

Don't worry.

Old age isn't contagious.

Thank you.

They told me how you saved that young man.

I don't know if anyone's told you,
but thank you for everything you've done.

It took a lot of courage.

When I think of all the others
that didn't leave the stadium...

[priest] How can they be so wrong
about the faith they profess?

[priest sighs] Everywhere,
they are being called terrorists.

All I see is children
panicking in the dark.

We've failed to reach out to them.

Reassure them.

Give them confidence.

You must have better things to do
than listen to an old man rambling.

I'm delighted to have met you.

He who saves a life
saves the entire world, Virgil.

[soft music]

It's my fault.

-[Virgil whimpers]
-What are you saying?

You don't understand.

I killed them.

I killed them.

I have no right to live.

[music swells]

[Virgil sobs]
I... I have no right to live.

[priest] On the contrary, Virgil.

You have no right to die.

[male newscaster] Less than a week
after the collective suicide,

two more have taken place simultaneously
in the north of the country.

In total, 123 minors are said
to have lost their lives this morning

in these two large-scale acts
in the wake of the stadium tragedy.

Is this the start of a wave
of collective suicides?

Are these acts coordinated?
Can we say it's a movement?

What do these tragedies say
about the state of our youth?

This morning, the country
is waking up in a state of siege

with a death rate
we hadn't seen for decades.

Our special correspondent
Conrad Chainet is at the scene.

Conrad, how do we make sense
of these acts? Are they...

[ominous music]

[Virgil] Every night, I saw
their bloodied faces on the stadium turf.

That night, like every other,
I had dreamt about them.

When day broke,
I extended the utility knife blade.

It seemed simple.

Let the bathtub fill with hot water,

then cut my arm deeply
and lengthwise, the right way.

Life would have started to leave me.

Everything would have become
blurred and distant.

[Virgil sniffs]

[Virgil] It would have taken
less than ten minutes.


[Virgil groans]

[music fades]

[Virgil gulps and sighs]

[Virgil groans]

[Virgil] I've often thought back
to that moment.

My parents watching the bodies
on the TV in the living room.

And, upstairs,
that blade slashing my skin.

The living or the dead.

After all, it's that simple.

I chose the living.

[deep electronic beat]

[electronic theme tune]

[man] ...the foundation's
10th anniversary for an open day.

It's our biggest center,
the fourth to be opened in the city.

Once it's finished, we will be able
to welcome over 2,000 people.

Whatever their age...

the minors who visit Avenir are the reason
behind everything that happens here.

They can join a workshop or a forum
to develop a project.

They come when they like,
without obligation,

without appointment
and without constraint.

-[woman] You mean there are no--

It's disturbing, isn't it?

Odessa too was very skeptical
when we first met.

Now she chairs our board.

Most of the minors who come here
are already half out of the system.

Some have been in detention.

[Odessa] Known poverty, addiction.

Others are out of school
or from broken homes.

Our goal...

Avenir's goal...

is to give them hope.

The desire to make something
of their lives.

You're the ones
making a commitment, not them.

By supporting Avenir,
you're giving much more than money:

you're showing your trust.

You're inviting them to grow.


-You OK? Yeah, fine.
-And you?

[female newscaster] Humanity's
oldest person has just turned 169,

the greatest age ever reached by mankind.

Over four billion people
are expected tonight

to celebrate her 169th birthday.


[dance music]

[car honks repeatedly]

[music continues]

[music fades]

[female newscaster] The elder's
169th birthday was a huge success.

More than four billion people
celebrated this event yesterday.

-Let's look back at--

[male newscaster] We are interrupting
your program with this news flash!

The bodies of seven minors have just
been found on a beach in the capital.

Three girls and four boys, ages 17 to 25,

took their own lives with a firearm
on the evening of the birthday party,

in a scene inevitably reminiscent
of the Great Waves.

Are we seeing,
ten years after that tragedy,

a come-back of collective suicides?

Our special correspondent Sylva Debord
is at the scene. Over to her.

[Sylva] Only a few hours ago,

people were here celebrating
the oldest age ever reached by humanity.

No one imagined that such a tragedy
could happen again.

The atmosphere has been
particularly tense since this morning,

following the news
of this macabre discovery.

So far, no official statement
has been made,

but the Prime Minister
is expected to visit shortly.

[indistinct chatter]

I mean, it's not even the first time.

[girl 1] If they're suicides,
I don't know, I don't get it.

-Fuck. Yeah, it's really scary.
-[boy 1] Pff!

They said, I think anyway,
they were the same age as us.

But we don't know!
We don't know so there's no point...

[chatter continues]

[girl 1] It sucks.
Why are people committing suicide?

[girl 2] Calm down!

Please, we can't hear each other.


Right, does anyone want
to talk about what's happened?


[girl 2] Isild?

[Isild] Uh...

I'm angry, and sad too.

I feel sadness and rage.

[girl 1] Why?

I don't know,
if we'd been able to talk to them...

maybe we could have told them
there are other options.

[Isild] I don't know,
to avoid this. It's...

[Isild] It's more than a waste.

It's an awful thing to do,
even for those who remain, it's awful.

I sometimes think it could have been us.

-[girl 3] I don't think so.

That's precisely why we're different,
we'd never do that.

[girl 2] What makes you say that?

-[girl 3] They might have visited Avenir.
-[girl 4] They probably did.

[boy 1] Deb recognized one on the news.

Rubbish! We don't even know
who they were yet.

-[girl 3] Yeah, they blurred the faces.
-Ask her, I'm telling you--

[girl 2] Stop! This is all speculation.
That's not the idea.

[girl 2] The idea
is to express our feelings.

What's inside us.

Isild mentioned anger.
Does anyone else feel that way?

[girl 3] I'm the same.

And I feel a bit guilty, too.

Like, we're preparing this big party
as if nothing had happened.

[girl 3] But we're not looking
where we should.

[girl 3] There's something wrong.

-[boy 2] She's right.
-[Isild] It's true.

[girl 5] Yeah, totally.

She talks too much.

-[girl 4] He has to stop.
-[girl 5] It doesn't matter anyway...

[boy 2] We all agree.

[Isild] Yeah, I don't know.

[chatter continues]

[coughing continues]

[priest sighs]

[priest] You're not responsible
for those deaths on the beach.

I know, but it's...

it's a nightmare.

I feel like I'm stuck in a nightmare.

[priest scoffs]

I'd really like you to take
the time to look back...

and see how far you've come.

[Virgil scoffs]

How's the inauguration coming along?

Well. We'll be ready.

-[priest] Hm.
-You should come and see. It's fantastic.

I have something for you.

There. On my desk.

They're preparing
a celebration for me, too.

Why didn't you tell me?

I'm telling you now.

[Virgil sighs]

[priest] You knew
it would happen sooner or later.

[priest chuckles]

Why are you sad when I'm not?

[priest] It's life
that will be celebrated.

[Virgil sighs]

I want it to be you holding my hand.

[Virgil sobs]

Please don't leave me.

[priest] You don't
need me anymore, Virgil.

Look ahead.

-[priest] Don't be afraid.
-[Virgil sighs]

[Virgil sighs]

I'm so happy to have met you.

[Virgil sobs] Me too.

[melancholy acoustic guitar]

[woman sings] ♪ You're holding back ♪

♪ From falling down ♪

♪ By pretending to be ♪

♪ By pretending to live ♪

♪ The shock is fine ♪

-♪ The treatments right ♪
-[priest gasps]

-[priest gasps]
-♪ And now last letter ♪

-[priest sighs]
-♪ From the saddest loner ♪

♪ You've waited this long ♪

[man] He is a fulfilled man.

♪ But now you're tired
of this inner war ♪

♪ Think of all the life that you lived ♪

Let him go.

♪ Cause your memories,
they will fade for good ♪

-♪ That demon drink ♪
-[drums kick in]

-♪ Your eyes won't blink ♪
-[music turns electronic]

[fading] ♪ A halo above your head... ♪

[thumping electronic music]

[music continues]

[Virgil] Father Samuel used to say
we should celebrate life.

At the time when death returns,
I must repeat his words.

"Celebrate life.

Don't be afraid.

Look ahead."

[music fades]

[rumbling thunder]


[woman 1] Oh!

[man 1] Beyond the financial aspect,
we believe in a true synergy

between Avenir and the institutions
we already support,

starting with this very museum.

It will make its spaces
and educational tools available to you.

In short, we're very happy to begin
this adventure at your side.

Thank you. On behalf of them all...

thank you.

[man 2] Thank you.

Avenir is an indisputable success.
At your age, it's impressive.

-[woman 1] How old are you, Virgil?

-[woman 2] Have you started regenerating?
-No, uh, not yet.

[man 2] That reminds me of a joke.

This guy has just turned 30.

His best friend asks:
"Have you started regenerating?"

He replies: "No, not yet."

At 40, his friend asks again:
"Have you started regenerating?"

He replies: "No, not yet."

Fifty years go by, this guy is old,

worn out, wrinkled.

His friend, who hasn't changed, asks him:

"When are you going
to start regenerating?"

He looks at him, dismayed, and says...

"Whenever I get a spare moment."

[polite laughter]

-Are you happy?
-Yes, yeah.

Then why aren't you smiling?

You've wanted
this partnership for a while.

Yes, it's good, it's a milestone.


The police came today
about the suicides on the beach.

I'm sorry, I should have told you
before the meeting.

-What did they want?
-I don't know, a list of our members.

It's absurd,
we don't have any of that at Avenir.

You have nothing to fear, then.

I'm thinking of our sponsors.

Our partners trust you.

They won't run away at the first rumor.

And neither you nor Avenir
are to blame for this tragedy.

Don't worry.

-Remember when we first met?
-[Odessa scoffs]

I probably bored you stiff
with memories from another century.

You said: "We can regenerate all we want,
only the youth can regenerate the world."

-Despite my old age, I still believe that.
-[approaching footsteps]

Thank you.

-I have to go.
-[retreating footsteps]

-[Odessa sighs]
-Don't worry, it will all be OK.

I'm counting on you.

-[Odessa] It's a good day, Virgil.
-[retreating footsteps]

[Odessa] Learn to make
the most of good days.

[muffled electronic music]

[thumping electronic music]

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪


-[muffled music]
-...sparing neither your efforts...

nor your energy... my deepest gratitude...

-[Ian] You all right?
-[Virgil] Yeah.

[Virgil shouts] No, no, no! Isild!

[music gets louder]

[Virgil shouts] Isild!


♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ That's hot, that's hot ♪

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ That's hot, that's hot ♪

[Virgil] What if it were that simple?

Making the most of good days.

Forgetting about the dead.

Dancing among the living.

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

♪ That's hot, that's hot ♪

♪ That's hot, that's hot ♪

♪ Bring it back, bring it, that's hot ♪

- [music stops]
- [sirens blaring]

[indistinct radio comms]


[whirring and beeping]

[Lesky] We identified her.

[Darius] Do you know her?

[Darius] Samian Vanghen.

Twenty-two years old.
She was a regular at your foundation.

I've never seen her.
I told you before, we get--

Thousands, I know.

Virgil, Virgil,
they're evacuating the hall!

They're closing down the center!

Why the hell are you closing us down?
You know the sacrifices.

[Virgil shouts] Look at me!

Don't you get it? Ten years ago,
you were just as blind to it!

How many deaths
will it take this time, 500? A thousand?

-Please calm down, Mr. Berti.
-Or what? You'll arrest me?

Yes, lock us up, solve your problems!

-Goddammit, look at me!
-[Ian] Virgil, Virgil, stop.

-[girl] Virgil, stop it.
-[boy] Let him go.

[whirring and beeping continue]

[Darius] Lesky.

Mr. Berti, Mr. Berti,
explain to us what's happening here.

There was a suicide tonight,
outside of the event.

It was an absurd act,
unbearable and inexplicable.

But look at how the authorities
have reacted to it.

[woman] You're referring to the shutdown
of your new center for minors?

It's nothing less
than absolutely criminal!

They stigmatize a whole section of society

with their unacceptable actions.

It's no surprise some kids act radically.

[waves crashing]

Have they closed the center yet?

[Ian] They're closing all of them,
all over the country.

I don't think they liked
your speech in front of the press.


It's probably dumb but you know what
you said about us not keeping records?

It's true we don't keep a record
of participation in events and workshops.

But we do send copies
to a consultancy firm.

They collate the data and send us a review
of what worked or didn't that year...

Ian, I know what you're talking about,
but it's very general.

Their report, yes, that's general,
but not the source data.

We could get the data
and make a deal with the cops.

What do you mean, "make a deal"?

You know! Give and take.

Here's your fucking list,
now reopen our centers!

[Ian] You think it's stupid?

Do you have their number?

I already contacted them.

I'll call you when I know more, OK?


[soft snoring]




[ominous music]

[door unlatches]

[music intensifies]

[music intensifies further]


[Virgil gasps]

[labored breathing]



[door unlatches]


She wants to talk to you.


[man] Follow me.

[door shuts]

[low rumbling]

[deep breathing]

I've always known when I'm being lied to.

I knew when I was ten.

At 158, it's become...
a conditioned reflex.

[Odessa] This is why
I'll only ask the question once.

[Virgil] Ian?

Virgil, apart from him,

who have you told about the data
collected by my company?

Odessa, I don't understand.
Ian, what's going on?

-I don't know. I'm like you--
-[Virgil] No!

[Virgil gasps] No one!
We haven't told anyone! Stop it, please!

[Virgil] Untie him.

[labored breathing]

Odessa, you...

you have to explain.

[rumbling intensifies]


-[Ian screams] No! Virgil! Virgil!
-[Virgil] No!

[Ian] Virgil! Virgil!

[Ian struggles]

[Virgil] No! Ah! Argh!

[Virgil and Ian struggle]

[Ian screams] Virgil!

[Virgil whimpers] Stop it...
[screams] Fucking stop it!

[Ian hyperventilates]

-[Virgil screams] Stop it!
-[Ian hyperventilates]

[ominous beat]

-[beat fades]
-[Virgil sobs]

[Virgil gasps]

[labored breathing]

[Virgil whispers] Why?


-Don't look at me like that.
-[labored breathing]

There is more
than one facet to us, Virgil.

You're the best example, after all.

Virgil, Caron.

[Odessa] Caron, Virgil.

-How long have you known?
-[Odessa] It doesn't matter.

What matters
is that you keep playing your role,

as you have done for the last ten years.

No... No!

-[labored breathing]
-For them?

For him now.

Ian, is that right?

[Odessa] Let's say Ian.

So, for Ian and all those
you give so much hope to.

Do you really think
they want to know that their savior

encouraged dozens of them
to commit suicide?

[Odessa] That he's been lying
to them for years?

-That he's betrayed them?
-[ominous music]

If you quit now...

you'll destroy everything you've built.

That would be ridiculous.

[music intensifies]

Tell me what's going on with Avenir.

[Virgil screams] Answer me!

When you're my age, you can judge me.

[fast-paced electronic music]

[door opens]

[man] Get out.

[melancholy chords added]

[fast-paced electronic music continues]


[music fades]


-[Isild] See you Monday.

[bottles clink]

[distant chatter and laughter]

[door slams shut]

-Are you all right?

[Virgil] Huh.

Have you seen Ian?
He didn't come in today.

[Isild] Did you speak to him on the phone?



By the way, I wanted to say...

thanks for everything you do for us.

It gives us hope and really inspires us.

[Isild] Thank you so much.

-[Isild] See you tomorrow.
-[Virgil] Hm.

[door opens]

-[door shuts]
-[Virgil sobs]

[Virgil sniffs]

[Virgil sniffs]

[rumbling thunder]

[Virgil sighs]


[Virgil] Christa...


[insects chirping]


[Christa] Cut the engine.

[engine stops]

[rain starts to pour]

And now?

[Christa] Get out.

[rumbling thunder]

[ominous music]

[Christa] Stop.

[Christa] Take that off.

[Christa] On your knees.

[music turns melancholy]

[Virgil] The grass is soaked by the rain.

I feel the cold metal against my skull.

Kneeling here, ten years on,
everything is clear.


[Christa breathes rapidly]

[Virgil] It's that simple.

I never left the stadium.

[gunshot resonates]

[rumbling thunder]

-[Christa groans]

[melancholy music]

Subtitle translation by Julia Knapp