Stories from the Chestnut Woods (2019) - full transcript

In a decaying forest on the Yugoslav-Italian border in the years after World War II, a stingy, old carpenter and a lonely, young chestnut seller share imaginative memories of the past as ...

I wasn't there
when it happened.

I heard the story many years later,
after I'd returned from Belgium.

I should say a fairytale,

for some might not believe
what I?m about to tell yon.




Are you waiting for the cart?

You coining with us?

Let's go then.

Lot's go home.

Mario, the stingy carpenter

- He must?ve found another girl.
- No, he hasn't!

But he told me last time
that my hair doesn't look good

because I wash it
with ashes and not soap.

the ladies from Cividale, but of garlic.

Says a guy
who looks like a minor,

like a crossbreed
between a badger and a horse.

You don't understand.
- I do!

If I?d been in Milan.
this wouldn?t have happened...

Well, go to Milan then!

Four, nine -

Six, seven - mine!

Five, ten.
Seven, seven, seven - mine!

Show them
how it's played, Mario.

Go to hell...

- Hello!
- Hello!

Hello, Salamant.

The "propeller".

No! You cheated!
You've seen it too, right?

Come on, Salamant.
don't make a fuss. Just play!

Hey, look here,
there's a golden peacock!

Oh, no, it was just a rabbit.

I won.

No! That's not right.

- and 4 make 7.
- You've added a finger!

- What are you saying?
- You?ve cheated! Again!

Did you see it this time or not?

- He can't take a joke, poor wretch.
- He's old.

Mario, leave it. If you go now.
we'll lose second prize, too.



What noises are you making?

I have trouble breathing.

Sit down then. Rest a little.

It hurts me hero.

And my head is heavy.

Maybe you've caught something.
Go to bed.

My legs hurt.

I can?t eat.

- Did you bring wood to the house?
- Yes.

- Did you fetch water from the well?
- I did, yes.

Then it isn't serious.

A flu, maybe. It'll pass.

don't cough please.

I can't think
when yon cough like that.

I can't...

Expenses - Revenues


2000 - lost in this month alone.

Did you hear about the general?

We all knew it, right?

His lungs were failing.

And I waited, with patience.

Then his damned wife takes him
to the hospital in Cividale,

thinking they'll be able
to save him there.

No God could?ve saved him!

And then he dies there
after two days!

And then they bury him there,
in Cividale!

He was well-off.

would've made him
a special coffin.

Covered with decorations.

I'd even bought the wood.
Nut wood!

Three thousand,
just for the wood!

With the prosciutto
stolen in the game.

it comes to 20,000.

What happened?

If you count in the interest,
we've lost the profit of six months!

- Mario...
- What?

I'm dying.

Do you want me
to make you some tea?

It'll make you feel better.

Dear Germano

Marta, the last chestnut seller

Thank you.

Sit down.
There next to the stove.

Thank you.

I'll make some coffee.

Let's go home.

We've only just left home.

I'm taking yon to doctor Toni.

Are you with me?

What do you want?

Excuse me, doctor,
my wife fell ill.

I've never seen her
like this before.

- She might need medicine.
- Do you know what time it is?

It's midnight,
come back tomorrow!

You're right. I apologize again,

but the cart
only leaves at this hour.

She couldn't have come on foot.
She's too weak.

Please take a moment
to examine her.


Sit down.

How do you feel?

Well, it?s obvious.

It might be a flu.
tuberculosis or typhus...


It's not important.
How old is she?

Not even 70.

- She's almost 70?
- Yes.

70! Do you know many people
of that age in these parts?

Of course, doctor,

you're right in general,
but try to understand

that even an insect wants to live
as long as possible.

Take her home.

Put a cold compress
on her forehead and let her rest.

Please, doctor, take pity on us.

This isn't only a fever.

It's something serious.

I've never seen her like this.

Please give her
something stronger.

Take her home.
Take your wife home.

I beg you.

Two spoons.

into hot water.

Twice a day.

Good night.

Close the door well behind you.
It doesn't close well.

There's a draught.

I need to get it fixed,
but I never have enough time.

Where are you taking me?

Bine lived here,
they emigrated in September.

They were well-off,
should be comfortable.

Did you get some rest?

It's beautiful.

Renaissance style.

The Florentine School.

It's of the same make,

only, in those times,
wedding chests were colored.

Yes, it is pretty.

But it cost a fortune.

For that money, one could get
something more useful.

Of course, it cost a fortune.

It's a work of art.

Look at the decorations.

City people would pay much more.

You might be right,

you seem to know a lot
about these things.

I do.

Will nobody be worried
if you return home so late?

No, nobody will be worried.

And where's your husband?

Away... For work.

If you wish, rest for a bit.

I'll make something to eat.

Oh, sorry,
they were lying on the table.

Are you alright?

I've seen
photos like that before.

A house, a car.
Things like that.

What things?

A man from our village
had a son who left for Belgium.

He was supposed to become
an engineer.

He studied in Udine
and was a model student.

But there were no jobs here.
So he left.

He sent photos from abroad.
Photos just like those.

Everybody thought
he had become an engineer

and had found a hotter job there.

But he was lying.

Everything was staged.

He had no car.

He lived in a shack,
just like here.

Because he wasn't an engineer,
but a miner.

People think that in other places
money grows on trees.

Nobody over thinks
of doing something here.


What could one do here?

You could make
a fortune with chestnuts.

You could sell them in the city,

and yon could sell
some of the wood to me.

I could make balconies,
special beams.

There's nothing as fine
as our chestnut wood.


We live in a forgotten place.
Don?t you see that?

Nothing is possible here.

Why don't you tell me
story instead? A fairytale.

You must know many
at your age.

- I don?t know any.
- Of course you do.

- You must know at least one.
- No, I don't.

My wife knew such things.

I don't.

Then tell me
one of your wife's.

I don't remember anything.

Maybe you didn?t listen to her.

In that case, I will tell you one.


Mario, where are you?

Why didn't you ever let me
write to Germano?

You also had fun when you
played with him by the river.

How could you forget
your son like that?

Go to hell.

Good evening, sir,
good evening, ma'am.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

You and your family,
you are good people.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

The Morningstar travels to the
other side of the Black Mountain.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

We have heard it said
you slaughtered a piglet.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

Be it a piglet or a pig,
we are fit for every meat.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

We must go forth now,
we'll recommend you to God.

Three Kings came for a visit
as Mary gave birth to Jesus.

That won't be enough
for the ticket. I'm sorry.

- How can that be?
- Believe me, it's not enough.

- Please, I beg you...
- I'm sorry.

Wait a minute.
I'll get something better.

Hurry up!

How much money do yon need?


I'll buy the chest
for that much.

Even though
it's actually worth much more.

I have the money.

It'll be enough.

Is that a joke?


I'm always serious.

Have nice memories of me.

Take what you wish from the house.
I won't need anything anymore.

Leave the key under a stone
next to the window.

I'll write to my parents.

I don't need anything.

Look around. Maybe
you could sell something.

Is it true
that you've lost your wife?

At the beginning,
I wasn't sure.

It all seemed very strange.

I'm sorry.

Thank you, Mr. Salama

What is it?

It's me again.

Do you remember me?

No, I don?t.

I came with my wife

a few days ago.

Do you have any idea how many
people come here every day?

I'm thirsty all the time,

and I can hardly walk.

- Flu, tuberculosis, typhus.
- Typhus?

That's what you told her, too.

Put some cold compresses
on your forehead.

- Take this powder...
- But she's dead.

...twice a day.

Two spoons in hot water.

How come I know
what you?re going to say,

and you know
what I'm going to say, too?

And we never manage to say

- What?
- From the heart.

Something from the heart
in these conditions?

What are you talking about?

Do you know where you live?

Does this place
seem normal to you?

What you want is a privilege.

That's not for people like us.
Maybe in a hundred years

when things become
normal hero. Maybe then.

But not now.

Take the powder and go home.

And close the door well.
It doesn't close well.

Once you?re gone, it's forever.

No need to eat, no need to drink.
No taxes to pay.

Only advantages.

Such were my parents' last days.

At least the way I imagine them.



Are you waiting for the cart?

You coming with us?

For a while after that,
people told the story

of how the stingy carpenter Mario

paid for the beautiful Marta's
journey to Australia.

Their encounter
became a fairytale,

one of the last from our valley.


with profound feelings,

Rossana turns to the young man
that appeared in the room.

"Mauro, is it really you?
It's not a dream, is it?"

"Oh, my joy, my life,
my everything!"

My everything...

"No, it's not a dream, Rossana."

"It's really me.
Our love could never die!"

Then they shout simultaneously
passionately: "Mauro!" "Rossana!"

- Read on! What happens next?
- Wait, wait.

I'll be the prettiest tonight
when I dance with you.

With you.

I don't want you to think about
the one you used to love,

but me.

The night will fold its wings
and hide us

and you'll finally
be able to kiss me.

And I'll be the prettiest of all
when I dance with yon.

I hope the dress I wear tonight

will please you as it pleases me.

I'll put my hair up

the way you like it.

The night will fold its wings
and hide us

and you'll finally
be able to kiss me.

And I'll be the prettiest of all
when I dance with you.

Three unfinished coffins.

112 made since 1909.
That amounts to 414,000.

Three wedding chests,
64 since 1912.

215,000 in total.

Next paragraph.

What do you want?

What are you doing?

Can't you see?

We're making an inventory
of your property.

I?ve done that myself.
I wrote it all down in my book.

Yes, but you're human,
and humans make mistakes.

Just one question please:

Could you bring her back?

What do you moan?
She?s here.

No. Not that one,
the other one.

- The one that left...
- Who?

What are you on about?

I don't know her name.
The young one!

Even if we wanted to,
we couldn't do that.

Such an event wouldn't be
within our competence.

- We're only ghosts, Mari
- Yes.

But we can bring
small presents. Look.

- He really can't take a joke.
- He never could.

47 letters, unsent.

- Leave that, that's not for you.
- Who are they for, then?

For Germano.

His son.

- When will yon send them?
- When the time is right.

Well, you might have missed it.

So, what can I do now?

Salamant, you?re no longer alive.
Don't you understand that?

I promise you, we'll help her.

But how?

With luck.

Mario was a little difficult.
But he had his reasons.

He was a man of his word.

Salamant was
a right jerk. A rude.

He thought
only of himself, like a pig.

- There will never be anyone like him.
- His poor wife.

She had to keep silent
and always stay at home.

I knew him well.
He had a heart of stone.

But may he rest in peace

May he turn in his coffin.

Dear Germano,

excuse my awkward writing.

You haven't written
for a long time.

We would be very happy
if you dropped us a few lines.

Here, everything is fine.

I wish you all the best.

Kind regards, Mario.


Hardsubs transcript by