Savage Hunt of King Stakh (1980) - full transcript

A mystical drama based on a story by V. Korotkevich. The film is set in out-of-the-way Belarusian woodlands at the end of the 19th century. A young ethnographer, Andrej Bielarecki, comes here to research local folk legends.


Screenplay by

Valery RUBlNCHlK

Directed by
Valery RUBlNCHlK

Director of Photography
Tatiana LOGlNOVA

Production Designer
Alexander CHERTOVlCH

Music by
Yevgeny GLEBOV

English Subtitles by
T. Kameneva


Yelena DlMlTROVA

Albert FlLOZOV
Roman FlLlPPOV


Alexander KHARlTONOV

lgor KLASS



Victor lLYlCHYOV

- Who's there?
- Would you open the door, please?

Who are you?

l'm not from these parts.
Can you give me shelter from the rain?

What's your name?

My name? Bielarecki.

Count Bielarecki?


Based upon the story by V. Korotkevich

Here are some dry clothes for you.

My mistress would like you to join her
for dinner.

l'd be honored. But to whom
do l owe the hospitality?

You are at the castle of Marsh Firs.

You ought to be ashamed of yourself
not to know the owners.

They are the Janowskis.
You must have heard of them.

l own this estate.

l'm the owner of Marsh Firs,
Nadzieja Janowska.

Won't you sit down?

l'm sorry,
l haven't introduced myself.

My name is Andrej Bielarecki.

l'm doing research on the legends
of the north-western parts.

l have references from the Academy
and a letter from the Governor.

Tell me, Vilna and Minsk, would
they be very large cities?


But Moscow and Petersburg are even

ls it true that the street lights are
left on all night there?

l guess they are.

l think l've met you before.

But where?

l don't remember.

Have you never had that feeling
that you're doing something

that's happened before?

This night, and the rain beating on
the windows,

you asking for shelter,
and me watching you.

When did that happen?

l don't remember.

Perhaps l dreamed it.

ln medicine, they call it
''deja vu''.

lt is like you have seen it
already. lt happens.

Are you gathering our folklore?

l'm more interested in legends.
Old legends.



What do you need our legends for?

All that gloom created
in the minds of savages?

But it's my work, and it's become
a passion.

God preserve us!

The passions people have.

l'm even told that some
people collect snakes.

lgnati Gacievic, the manager.

At your service.

You shouldn't hold a grudge against
my mistress, sir.

lt was very thoughtless
of you to have come here.

As far as l'm concerned,
l try to avoid

dining with my mistress
at the same table.

Might l ask why?

- You really don't know anything?
- No.

Then you're lucky.

The charm will be fulfilled
in this foul and foggy air.

The damned will be purged on all
that's in this lair.

All the world's pains, pestilence

and bleeding sores,

leave this pure and innocent soul.

Cast out the evil turmoil
and let it be destroyed.

ln the dark and deepest grave

l bury the sickness in these bones.

Oh, l do implore
the mighty God

to cleanse this soul
and make her whole.

All the world's pains,

and bleeding sores,

leave this pure

and innocent soul,

the God's servant Nadzieja.

Pure sweet water
in its flow,

doth caress
the roughened stone.

l do implore your purest breath

to ease thy servant
in her stress.

Evil eye and evil sway,
l beseech thee go away.

My poor orphan...

My dearest tender heart.

Evil force,
leave this pure and gentle body.

Get thee gone from this flesh

and blood and breast and limbs.

Return to your cold and icy tomb!

May the marshes
you embrace,

never more
my love to haunt!

Get thee gone, foul and evil spirit!

Go away and leave us!

Begone! Begone!

Away with you, evil force!

Away, evil force!


We're celebrating today
the coming-of-age of our mistress.

Don't be surprised that most of
the guests have arrived in the morning.

Even the bravest of our men
refuse to leave home after dark.

The honorable guardian
Hryn Dubotowk

and Mr. Ales Varona!

Good day to you, ladies and gentlemen!

Why so sad,
like mice under a hat?

Woe becomes only the crayfish.

Good day to you, my dear.

How graceful and beautiful
you have become!

All Belarus will lie at your feet.

Only your eyes are somewhat sad.
No matter, l'll make you merry!

Anton, you devil!
Hryska! Piatrus!

Here, place it in your bedroom.
The wind comes in there.

The feet of all the Janowskis
are weak ones.

But we're worldly people, we suffer
from overeating and too much drink.

Yet if God looks
into people's souls,

then your father now...

Although he was wont to pass
the church by but not the tavern.

Then your father

has been listening to the angels
in heaven now,

and looking into the eyes of
his poor wife, my cousin.

And they look at you from heaven

and see what a queen you've become.

You'll soon be getting married.

And off my hands. To the devil
with this guardianship!

But don't be in a hurry.

And now another present.

Hey, Vasil!
Vasil, bring it in!

Here, an old costume of our country.

A real one,
not some kind of an imitation.

And the last thing. Come on.

Sir, you consider it worthy
of a true aristocrat

to push a person aside
without begging his pardon?

- Are you addressing me?
- You.

A true aristocrat
is a gentleman, first of all.

You don't even know me.

l don't know and l don't want to know.

You're speaking with the man
who's in the habit

of pulling parvenus by the ear.

Hasn't it occurred to you that some
parvenus can pull your ears?

Gentlemen, calm yourselves.

Mr. Bielarecki!
Mr. Varona, don't!

You pup!
To insult a guest in such a way!

Don't you see whom you're picking
a fight with?

He's not one of our
chicken-hearted fools.

This is not a chick,
this is a man.

Ask your hostess to forgive you.

lt's nothing.

l beg your pardon for this

- Andrej Sviecilovic, a student.
- Bielarecki.

Actually, a former student
of the Kiev University.

l've just arrived,
like you.

Well, l've been here before,
but not for five years.

My God, what mediocrity.

ls it the beginning of a toast?

No, l'm serious.

We have never had any really
great thinkers among us.

Perhaps, it's for the better.

They're looking.
Looking at you, too.

They all belong to one gang here.

The old horse's riding
days are over.

Soon l'll be sent off to Abraham
to make beer out of me.

Why are you standing?
Come here.

A fine Polish gentleman you would
have made some hundred years ago.

But l'm curious to know whether you're
a serious person or a featherbrain.

Look here, young man, l invite
you to come to my place.

l got an interesting hut,
without any outlandish things.

Your visit should be interesting
for you.

- But, unfortunately...
- No buts!

l will not hear another word.

How can a guest of Marsh Firs,
a handsome fellow, eyes like steel,

strong hands, not come
and visit old Hryn Dubotowk?

ltjust can't be!

You come as well.

No, thank you, uncle dear, l'll remain
at home.

She's ruining herself.

Well, l shall be waiting for you.
You hear me?

She fainted.

A nervous breakdown.

lt's cold in here.

This is a horrible, damned house.

lt's sucking the life out of a person.

Do you hear it?

Do you hear?

lt's that Little Man.

He's here again!
He's after my soul!


The Little Man
of Marsh Firs.

He appears when somebody
must die a sudden death.

He came before my father died,
and two more times recently.

lt's impossible! There's no place for

in the age of steam and electricity.

You're wrong.

We have more ghosts
than live people.

This place is
a treasure-trove for you.

Mr. Gacievic...

Mr. Gacievic, tell Mr. Bielarecki
about the Lady-in-Blue.

- Calm yourself, l beg you.
- Come on, tell him.

All right.

The story about the Lady-in-Blue
is part

of this family's
old legends.

When they dragged her in 1501
to her execution, she shouted:

''My bones shall find
no peace until, l beg your pardon,

the last snake of this race
has perished!''

Go on.

All right.

And then for 100 years
there was no escape from her.

lt was either a plague,

or a goblet of poison,
or death caused by nightmares.

- That's all.
- No, that's not all.

Not long ago, she has been
seen in our house again.

Everyone saw her,
l alone have not seen her.

This is her habit:

to appear to all, but to the person
she's after only at his death hour.

Our ancestors believed in werewolves,
witches, the devil knows what.

And there had always been people
who claimed they'd seen them.

But almost none of my ancestors
died a natural death.

This one in the red cloak was still
alive when they were burying him.

Our distant relative, Dostoyevskaya,
was condemned to death

for attempting to kill her stepson.

And this one, in the beaver coat,

had tortured to death
his cousin.

And my father?!

He was an atheist,
but he believed in the Little Man

until the very day when the Savage
Hunt put an end to him.

And l know that l shall die,
there's no way out for me.

The Little Man, the Lady-in-Blue
and the Savage Hunt...

lt will kill us,
the Savage Hunt of King Stach.

This is King Stach.


He was called so throughout this

lt is said that the royal blood
actually flowed in his veins.

An outstanding personality
for his time, by the way.

He sympathized with the mouzhiks,
promised to introduce reforms.

And mind you, that was in 1602.

The local peasants took
the oath of allegiance to him.

And only the distant ancestor
of our respected mistress,

Roman Janowski the Elder,
was not enthusiastic about him,

ensconcing himself to this castle
we're in now and keeping silent.

This is him, Janowski the Elder.

King Stach came to visit him.

As a token of friendship,
they mixed their blood in a goblet,

drank it, and kissed each other.

And after their successful hunt
for a marsh lynx,

they decided to feast at night
in the forest.

When all the hunters,
except the king, fell asleep,

Janouski took his sword with both

Like this.

He came up to King Stach and struck
him at the back of his head.

King Stach fell.

Yes, he fell... with his face
in the grass.

But by his last effort, he raised his
head and looked Roman in the eyes.

Roman struck him a second time.

Meanwhile, Janowski's men
killed King Stach's sleeping hunters,

strapped them and King Stach to their
saddles and drove off the horses.

And the bloody horsemen

rode on heedlessly
right to the swamp.

But there was a spark of life yet
in King Stach's body,

and for a long time his voice
was heard from the darkness:

''We shall not die!

We shall come to you!

And to your children.
And to your grandchildren.

l and my Hunt,

we shall avenge mercilessly
until the 20th generation.

And you won't be able to hide
from us.''

Two weeks after that,
strange things began to happen

to the people close to Roman Janowski.

Some went mad,

some just perished,
some drowned in the swamp.

They all died.

ln this way did Roman and his son

and the son of his son perish.

From that time...

many people saw in the peat-bogs

13 horsemen, strapped to their
saddles, headed by King Stach.

The Savage Hunt races on heedlessly
across the fatal quagmire,

across the forest, across the heather,

and it will ride as long
as the world lasts.

May God forgive us!

Well, l beg your pardon, but what
does the gentleman think of this?

The Little Man, the Lady-in-Blue,
and this Savage Hunt to boot.

The house has been surrounded from
without and within! May it be burned!

Don't blaspheme!

To be frank with you, l believe

neither in the Little Man,
nor in the Lady-in-Blue.

But everybody has seen them,
including you.


l haven't seen, l've heard them.

And the nature of the sound is unknown
to us.

Perhaps, it was an acoustic
illusion, or hallucinations.

She has seen him.


You know...

l cannot believe everything she says.


l think her poor head hasn't been
able to cope with all these horrors.


She's a peculiar person,
to say the least.


Not everyone was born a hero.

Frankly, l'm afraid.

l'm afraid of this fall season.

Three times already the Savage Hunt
has appeared under these windows.

You realize now
that you must leave our house.

Death waits behind these windows.

Look, a little aspen tree
has run out into the field.

They will be the first to be covered
with snow and broken by the wind.

Somehow they remind me
of humans.

People ascend the cross and
go to the stake just like this.

They know only that
a person mustn't be like that.

lt's no good promising him pie
in the sky.

He needs to have happiness now,

in this life,
under this gloomy skies.

And they're more courageous
than Christ.

They know that there's no
resurrection after the crucifixion.

lf l could hang with them,

even by a rib from the hook,
just to prevent

King Stach's Savage Hunt tearing
across the land at a mad pace.

The Savage Hunt of King Stach...

To stop that barbarity in the people's

which breeds fear of their own
shadow, gloom, madness, death.

Who is that? Do you know her?

Yes, it's Mr. Kulsa's widow.

She's also Nadzieja Janowska's aunt
and her direct heir.

lf anything should happen
to Janowska,

she'd inherit the castle.
Well, her or Dubotowk.

He's her uncle, her guardian,
and God knows what else.

What do you mean?

l trust nobody now.

lncluding that coachman

who has been too solicitous
about his mistress lately.

Since the time
her husband had disappeared.

l suspected even you.

Or rather began to suspect,
but l caught myself in time.

Why not?

Your presence in the house
might look suspicious.

And why not suppose that you
yourself are King Stach?

- Me?
- Yes.

Yes, yes.

You're throwing dust in my eyes,
pretending to suspect someone.

What about yourself?

Mr. Bielarecki.



Where are you?

Bielarecki, where are you?

Where are you, Mr. Bielarecki?!

You're fortunate...

The bone isn't touched.

You're going to be fine.

And you were saying
that l could have been King Stach.

Miss Janowska, may l invite
Gacievic to dine with us?

Mr. Gacievic, we'd be pleased
if you'd come and join us.

Thank you, but l've already dined.

Who's there?

- Come in.
- Pardon my late visit.

l supposed
you weren't sleeping yet.

l beg your pardon, l had decided,
so to speak, to satisfy my appetite.

Please, go on.

Oh, it's unthinkable!

To eat in the presence of such
a respectable gentleman, l just cannot.

Have you never noticed what
an unpleasant sight is a person eating?

lt's disgusting!

There's a striking resemblance
in all people at those minutes

to some kind of animal.

This one... guzzles like a lion.

That one champs
like the animal

the prodigal son pastured.

l never eat in the presence of anybody.


l'm listening to you.

Tell me, isn't there
any secret place

in the old wing of the house?

A secret place?


The entire house is some kind of
a secret.

You mean...

l mean a hidden room
with a secret entrance,

where, l beg your pardon...

where a fifth dweller
might be hiding.

l don't know.

There must be a secret personal
archive of the Janowskis.

But where is it? lt's not
indicated on the castle's plan.

l don't know.

Have you found
any secret place?


But l don't rule out
the possibility of its existence.

Not necessarily.

Every schoolboy
knows today

that the famous ghost of
the Lyubomirski castle in Dubrovna

proved to be just an old vessel
with gold coins and mercury.

Some prankster had it
sealed up in the chimney.

And as the heat of the day
changed to the nighttime coolness,

some terrible clinging sound and
noise was heard from the 2nd floor.

And of course, in the Middle Age
houses were built with hollow walls

so that the master could listen to
the talk of his servants and guests.

You mean to say...

l mean to say...

that such an educated man as you
should not

take some acoustic tricks
for supernatural phenomena.

Sir, kind sir.

May God give you health, sir.

And may God punish those
who drive people from the land.

And who drove you off?

Where are your parents?

They killed them.

Killed them?

Who killed them?

We screamed, wept,
didn't want to go away.

And at night came
the Savage Hunt of King Stach,

and drove us to the swamp.

Those who screamed, they disappeared.

Nobody screamed any more.

The Savage Hunt?

My husband was taken
alive up to heaven.

The first among men
after the prophet Elijah.

But Roman Janowski...

fell into the nether regions.

All due to...

the evil genius of our parts.

The Savage Hunt.

You very much resemble...

my deceased...


Come in, please.

l've long been awaiting you.

The thing is... the thing is that...

my slave Ryhor turned out to be
a murderer.

Like Bluebeard.

You remember our reading together
about Giles the Bluebeard?

Such a gallant cavalier?

l'd have forgiven Ryhor if...

he'd murdered just as gallantly,
but he's a serf...


Who are you?

You're King Stach!


Away with you!

Why are you here?

Don't you see that she's a bit
not in her right mind?

Mrs. Kulsa, this is not King Stach.

He is Fieldmarshal Kaminski.

He's come to take a look at
our well-known local beauty.

And King Stach is this one,
in the portrait.

He's very dead
and cannot kill anyone.

- Take it, highly respectable lady.
- No.

Only godly bread is pure.


Help me.


You're Ryhor, aren't you?
Mrs. Kulsa's coachman?

l'm a hunter. Here l'm a coachman,
a cook, a watchman.

Why don't you take her to
the district center for treatment?

l pity her.
She's not always like that.

lt comes and goes.

But mostly she's all right.

She doesn't want much,
but she eats a lot of bread.

Sometimes she bites my fingers.

When l give her bread,
she grabs it.

But she wasn't bad when young.
Even if she were bad,

we couldn't leave her to herself.

Ryhor, l came to ask you
about something.

Ask away.

l've never seen
a ghost in my life.

l want to feel it
with my own hands.

Aren't you frightened of them?
They came to visit my mistress.

Since then they won't leave her alone.

They got long arms.
That's why l have to protect her.

l, too, have long wanted
to get at those spooks.

lf you're notjoking, let's get

But if you've come to betray me, your
stay will not be long on this earth.

Ryhor is not afraid of anybody.
And Ryhor has friends.

And l shoot well.
So, if anything, l'll kill.

As for feeling those ghosts
with your own hands,

fine ghosts they are

if their horses leave very real
excrement along the road.

lf so, we can feel them, not only
with our hands, but with a whip too.

Has Nadzieja Janowska
often been here?

Her father gave her permission once,

but then he had second thoughts, went
after her and was never seen again.

The poor girl was invited by
my husband, Mr. Kulsa.

You're such a knight, Mr. Fieldmarshal,
that l shall tell you everything.

King Stach himself... made...

my husband
invite Nadzieja Janowska.

Yes, King Stach.

My poor husband told me this.

Oh God, you'd better keep silent.

We've heard enough about that now.

He was such a good man...

Throughout that night...

the poor man was crying...

like a baby...

and in the morning...

he ascended alive up in heaven.

They drowned him in the marshes.

ls it true that...

Nadzieja Janowska...

that her father waits for her
in heaven?

Give me a hand.

Record this. lgnati Gacievic,
the estate manager, has been murdered.


Drive on.



You? What happened?

At the old cross, where Gacievic
was murdered, l met somebody.

''What are you doing here,
Mr. Sviecilovic?'' he asked me.

''Searching for yesterday's day,''
l answered jokingly.

''ls it possible to find yesterday's
day in today's?''

''Yesterday's day hangs round
all our necks,'' l said.

''What do you mean?''

''The King Stach's Savage Hunt,

which came to today's
from yesterday's day.''

He grew pale: ''Away with you!

Don't even mention it!''

We said goodbyes and he went off.

Continuing on my way,

l turned round and saw

that he had turned back towards
the cross.

- He saw me and hid.
- Who was it?

l cannot tell you yet.

Wait a little.

Mr. Bielarecki, l beg you,
don't do anything without me.

You should have expressed your views
and not given us puzzles to answer.

Everything is cleared up

easily and logically
only in bad novels.

We're not detectives
from the provincial police.


And thank Lord for that!

Wait, Sviecilovic!


There's no one here.
He said, at the old cross.

Did you record it?

Andrej Sviecilovic. former
student of the Kiev University.


- We can go.
- Drive on!

lt's you?

What's the matter?
What are you doing here?

What's happening, Miss Janowska?


l was hiding.

Each night l hid
in a different room.

l was afraid of everyone, even you.

l very well understand you
and your noble intentions.

But tell me, what would you
do in my place?

Why do you rule out the possibility of
killing because of the beautiful sex?

He was in love with the mistress
of Marsh Firs, wasn't he?

Or perhaps
this was a suicide.

The deceased was
a melancholic fellow,

psychically nervous,

a follower of Bacchus,
and so on

But l've heard it myself.

l respect you as a member
of the Geographic Society,

but this time allow me...

Excuse me, but may l give you
an unofficial advice?

Do not tempt fate.

lt seems that your acquaintance with
the deceased is somewhat suspicious.

He was, to say the least,
you see... well.

l do not wish
to exaggerate things, but...

it's also highly suspicious

of you striving so stubbornly to shift
the attention of the investigation

from the deceased
onto some mythical werewolves.

But l implore you...
not to get angry with me.

Your persistent efforts to hush up
the affair seems very strange

and make people come
to most risky assumptions.

l might regard these words
as insulting the authorities.

God forbid!

But this gives me the right
to appeal

to the higher authorities.

Now you believe in
the Savage Hunt of King Stach?

lf you could know

how much blood, murder,

orphans' tears are hidden
within these walls!

Don't you think that we are all
to answer for this?

Answer with fear,
suffering and death.

We haven't the right to exist,

even the most honest of us,
the very best of us.

The blood in our veins is not blue,
it's dirty blood.

That's all.

ln the morning you shall leave
Marsh Firs forever.

The violins have played their song,
the fineries have been put away.

Death has its own laws.

There is nothing you can do here!

You're a stranger here!

Go back to people who are alive,
who go hungry and can laugh.

And leave the graves to the dead!

Leave me! Go away!

l beg you! Please, leave!

Nadzieja Romanovna,
if you drive me out,

l shall find another shelter.

Before, my only wish was
to leave this place,

but now l...
l cannot do it!

l cannot leave these god-forsaken
swamps where abominable things occur,

where the children tremble with fright

and cry at night when they hear
the hoofs of the Savage Hunt.

Yes, l shall die if they're ghosts,

- lf they're people...
- lt's too late! Too late!

Everything comes too late in the world!
You came too late, too!

And if you are killed,
l will never forgive myself!

lt's my life,
it's all l own,

and l have the right to dispose of it
to my liking.

Farewell! Farewell!

As a gentleman, l appreciate
the noble efforts you're taking.

But at the moment, unfortunately,
l can't really be of any help to you.

ln fact, l hate
to disappoint you,

but l'm afraid
an investigation

in this primitive region
would not give us anything.

No, no, no.

l'm not against the new trends,
l read all the new literature,

l studied in St. Petersburg

and as a youth
l even dreamed of the stage,

which had horrified my parents.

But, hypothetically,
let us change places.

Put yourself in my position,
and you would understand.

Excuse me, but l saw
with my own eyes...

You saw what?


lt's not for a respectable member

of the lmperial Geographic Society
at the Academy of Russia

to believe, pardon me...

Would you like an advice from
a friend?

Don't play with fire.

You're lucky to deal with me.
But some petty official...

would be very suspicious

of your acquaintance with...
the deceased,

who was notorious for...


Well, you understand me.

You know what strikes me?

lt's your insistence
on leading the investigation

away from the person of the victim

and to some inexistent in reality
participants of the case,

some mythical werewolves.

l have the impression that the police,

instead of looking for the murderer,
is trying to close the case.

And they're doing it deliberately,
as though having such instructions.

l'm not denying the possibility that
there might be something rotten

in the state of Denmark.

l hope my words won't be
heard outside this room.

But your ill-wishers,
and l'm sure there are such,

are likely to take your comments
as a criticism of the state.

But on the contrary,

l mean to appeal
to the state myself.

Going to the capital?

Let me try
to dissuade you.

Strictly speaking,

l shouldn't have put my cards
on the table yet,

but l think you will
understand me correctly.

A letter was found in the pocket
of Gacievic, after he was murdered.

The letter was addressed to you.

- To me?
- To you.


''Dear Mr. Bielarecki,

l know little
about the Savage Hunt.

Nevertheless l can tell you something
of interest about it.

l can throw some light on the mystery
of some dark events in your house.

lt seems to me you're searching in
the wrong place, dear brother.''

- What?
- Dear brother.

Dear brother.

''You should search in the very castle
of Miss Janowska, damn it.

lf you wish to know something about
the Little Man of Marsh Firs,

come today at 9 p.m. to the old
cross, where the ford begins,

and l will tell you wherein
the root of the fatal events lies.''

Who wrote you this letter?
How did Gacievic have it?

And what's more to the point,
what is your involvement in his death?

l could ask you
many other questions,

but l won't ask them now.

lnstead, l'll give you some advice.

Run from our region as quickly as
you can.

Believe me, l'll be happy
to meet you again some day,

but under different, more
agreeable, circumstances.

it would mean a prison for you.

And you'll be lucky
if it's only a provincial prison.

Lambs and shepherds
Before little children,

They bend their knees,
Glorifying our Christ.

And we, too, in our midst
Sing glory to Christ.

Good day, ladies and gentlemen!

For whom is this throne intended?

ls it for me,
the terrible King Stach?

For you, Your Majesty!

ln that case,
summon Death!

Please, gentlemen, step aside,
King Stach will begin his rite!

And now...

Summon the one l love
as a brother, Roman Janowski.

Good day, Your Majesty!
Why have you called me?

Give me your beautiful daughter
to be my wife, dear brother.

l can't, Your Majesty,
she's the only one l have.

- l want only one, only her.
- Not for the world!

Then you must give me
you golden castle.

Don't even ask!

- Will you give me a ruble?
- You're not even worth a kopeck.

Then cut his head off!

A bird in the man!

And now, bring
his beautiful daughter.

l hear you and l obey.

Where's my beloved father?

Your father, that was his own wishes,
decided to stay in the marshes.

Before that, he commanded
that you become my wife,

take me to your castle
and give me a ruble.

l would rather die
than become your wife.

Cut off her head!

Give me at least a year!
A year to live!

- Not even a month!
- A day, then.

- Not even an hour!
- Give me one minute!

Not even a second!


lt won't fly.

Fly! Go on!

Fly! Damn...

And who are you, my dear friend?

l'm a student from St. Petersburg.
And who are you?

l'm the terrible King Stach!

You are not King Stach! You're
an impostor!

Oh, uncle, what have you done?
Marsh Firs are gorged with corpses!

You've sinned enough,
now you must meet your death.

Here l am, impostor!
lt's your death hour!

l will get my scythe and saws
and will cut yourjoints and sinews!

Lie down!

No, not on your side.
On your back, as girls lie down!

And how do girls lie down?

Student, can you bring
the dead back to life?

Yes, if they're not already cold.

Then revive Janowski and his daughter.

Where does it hurt?

ln the head.

We must send for vodka.
Get up!

By all the saints!
What a sleep we've had!

You would sleep for ages
if not for this stranger.

Poor God's servants,
always think of your last hour.

Don't be too proud,
don't become conceited.

Goodness gracious! Holy martyrs!
You've come after all!

The prodigal son has come!

Come to the table!

Hryska! Anton!
You louts, where are you?

l invited the buffoon breed

and all my serfs opened their
mouths, stupid fools!

Hryska! Piatrus!

Why are you staring, devils?
Never seen a man from the capital?

Come, food for the guest!

Come here, please.

To the devil with this!

A glass of vodka for a start! Sit down.

- Thank you, l...
- You can't?

Only a virgin wench can't,
but even she quickly agrees.

lt's too much.

When there're 3 wives in a hut, that's
too much, and that not for everyone.

Anton, go down on your knees before
our guest,

beat your foolish head on the floor
so that our guest not offend us.

l'm drinking.

That's a real man!

Get out!
Get out of here!

- Get out, quick!
- Why?

And don't show your faces here!

- You're not a boss here!
- Get out!

Stinking actors, damn you!

Get out while you're still in one

So you're getting married?

She is...


My ward.

l haven't thought of it.

Sing, sing, birdie.

You've probably taken me
for somebody else.

This is not the place to discuss such
a matter.

He's teaching me again, this cad.

Stop it!

You're insulting not only me,
but an innocent girl as well.

Gentlemen, calm yourselves.

Varona, you're drunk.

l once allowed an offence of yours
to pass by unnoticed,

but in future l won't!

Varona, what's the matter? Calm down.

No, my honor has been insulted.

Who will now come to visit me
if such things happen here?

- l don't care a damn! Oh!
- That's ''oh'' for you.

You will fight me with a saber.

He will fight with me, and my guest
will leave safe and sound.

He was the first to offend me.
And then l'll fight with you.

Ales, don't bring shame on my house.

Mr. Dubotowk, it's unnecessary.

l'm not afraid.
You be brave, too.

We shall shoot here and now.
Three bullets for each.

Yes, and in the dark.

Gentlemen, let's postpone it till

Drunk men are only good
for shooting sparrows.

Are you going to fire or not?
Stop messing about.


Quick! Over here!

lt seems l've killed him!

What's wrong, young man?

lt's all right, my dear.
lt's just your nerves.

lt wasn't you who insulted him. He
picked the quarrel himself, the drunk.

You know, he proposed to her
and got a refusal.

Just look how upset you are.
lt's because you're not used to it.

But you haven't killed him, he's just
deafened, like a bull at the slaughter.

A week in bed, and he'll be all right.

The Journal of the Estate Manager
lgn. Gacievic.

Who are you?


l'm Basil.

Basil Gacievic,
the manager's brother.

l know you. l was under the table, my
brother was feeding me when you came.

l haven't eaten for several days.

My brother used to feed me, and
at night he let me out for a walk.

But he hasn't come
for a whole week.

l've searched the entire house.
And l looked in the park. He's nowhere.

Have you seen my brother?

When he went to town,
he always warned me beforehand.

Perhaps the mistress sent him
to the district center?

lt's possible.

But it's strange
that he hasn't told you.

Come on, l'll give you something
to eat.

The Journal of lgnati Gacievic,
manager of Marsh Firs.

lt seems to me

that the first step to achieving
my goal

should be the victory over that

towards which my body is striving -
the mistress

of Marsh Firs.

Though she is stronger

than l had thought.

She hasn't lost her mind yet.

And l'm still jealous

of all young men,

and especially of this Bielarecki.

lt would be much better for him

to have disappeared as soon as

Today at the tavern

l watched
a puppet show

with insulting references
to King Stach.

l'm afraid that the actors' prophesies

will result in the vengeance of
the Savage Hunt.

My mistress's birthday
proved to me that...

...King Stach had proclaimed himself
the castle's master.


...proved to me that King Stach had
proclaimed himself the castle's master.

lt seems he's also convinced
there is gold in the cellars.


Thousands of panegyrics could be sung
to your power over people's souls.

You are everything: friendship, love,

the body of a woman,
the brain of the greatest geniuses,

even the decent hole in the earth.

An hour ago l intercepted a letter
addressed to Bielarecki.

Somebody wants to tell him
the truth about my brother.

l must put a stop to this. l'm going.

l'm going...

Here they come!

Here they come, the murderers!

l know them!

They've come for me, l...






Dubotowk, open up!

Dubotowk, open the door, please!

Open up!

Open the door! lt's me, Varona!

Dubotowk, open up!

lt's me, Varona!

Dubotowk, open the door!

Dubotowk! Dubotowk!

lt's him! He's the murderer!

He's behind the whole
masquerade! l swear!

Those horses gallop to his
voice, like dogs!

Beware, you rats!

No one of you shall remain alive!
l'll slaughter you and your children!

You want my soul, you devils?

l'll have your souls!

You, Bielarecki!


You'll burn in hell!

King Stach!

To my rescue!

Oh, King Stach!

ln the name
of his lmperial Majesty,

l arrest you
for inciting a revolt.

Wear something warm.
lt's a very long trip.

And the papers write it's freezing
in the capital.

Have you been to St. Petersburg before?

l attended the University there.

And l've never been there.

Are you unwell?

No, l'm fine.

Yet you shouldn't...

You shouldn't have come.

You know what?

Do you realize that today is
the first day of the 20th century?

Yes! Yes!

January the first,

1901 !

Extraordinary, isn't it?

The End