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The Pagan Queen (2009) - full transcript

A controversial film about the end of the old pagan world in central Europe, THE PAGAN QUEEN is based on the Czech legend of Libuse, the Slavic queen of 8th century Bohemia. Gifted with supernatural powers, a visionary and a seer, this extraordinary woman was able to see the future and in a turbulent time of cultural change founded the modern city of Prague. Libuse ruled as a woman over the tribes of the region with her two beautiful sisters Kazi and Teta and an army of women under the command of her best friend, the Amazon Vlasta. When the peaceful community of farmers is under attack by raiders and split into different parties of power hungry landowners, Libuse is forced into marriage by her own people. Desperate she elects her long time lover, the charismatic ploughman Premysl, to become her husband and king. Soon Premyl takes over the new kingdom and rules with an iron fist, enslaving the formerly free farmers. But Libuse's friend Vlasta, who is secretly in love with her, refuses to follow the new leader and with her maiden army declares war on the men of Bohemia. The film is based on the 18th and 19th century romantic German fairytales and plays by Johann Karl Musaeus, Clemens Brentano and Franz Grillparzer who emphasize the supernatural elements of the story and combine that with psychology and philosophy. This approach caused a massive scandal in the Czech Republic during the theatrical run of the film.


Water to earth.

Fire to earth.

Libuše...

- Libuše...
- Oh, please. Rest, father.

I cannot save him.

- Libuše...
- Vlasta went out to find her, father.

She will come.

Stop!

White woman of death,

please relieve this good man
of his pain,

and carry his soul
into the other world.

You lay by the river.

I thought you were dead.

The river...

I heard a song.

I, too, heard music.

- You did?
- Yes.

When I saw you, my heart
pounded a fantastic rhythm.

Why am I here
and my clothes over there?

You were drenched and shivering.

I had no choice but to undress you.

He may be a mouse and infant now,

he will grow to be
a great stallion.

Born this very night,
when you slept by the river.

What made you so weary?

Thank you for your kindness.
I really have to go.

Tell me what house you’re from;
I will send word you’re safe.

At least stay for a morning meal.

Farewell.

Libuše!

Libuše!

Libuše!

Where have you been?
I’ve searched everywhere!

You felt your father’s passing.

I’m sorry.

Where have you been?

I’m sorry.

We missed you.

You were in his thoughts
to the end.

Make your peace.

Father!

Beautiful, isn’t it?

All the colours of the forest.

Why did it die?

It didn’t die, my love.
It simply left its body.

Look.

Tell me again about my mother.

Your mother was a tree elf.

She has given you
a special gift –

the past and future
will be yours to gaze upon.

When the forest began to fall
under the axe of man,

she could not bear to stay.

Where did she go?

She wept so much at her loss,
her flood of tears made a river.

That is how our river was created.

It carries her spirit
all the way to the sea.

- To Krok!
- Krok!

Libuše.

The council grieves with you.

Your father was the finest
we have ever known.

- He will be sorely missed.
- Thank you, Domaslav.

I hope you do not think
it’s too soon for me to say so,

but he recommended that you
take his place on the council.

Yeah.

He told us of your gift...

The place on the council
should be mine, Domaslav.

I am the eldest.

I’m sorry, Kazi.

Krok’s seat will be taken
by Libuše, from now on.

My deepest sympathies
are with you all.

No...

Kazi, your knowledge
of medicine is unequalled.

Without your help I know not
how to save these families,

these children from their fever.

So don’t save them.
People are selfish and ignorant.

But people are also good.

And I was entrusted with this task –
to help the people.

A task for which I was
deemed untrustworthy.

You are wrong to see it that way.

I have never agreed with the way
humans organized their world.

Why should I now try to save it?

Let nature do with them
as she sees fit.

That is the way of things.

You’ll not help?

I have already devoted half of my life
to caring for humans.

The other half belongs to the forest.

I hope the spirit world
will give me the answer.

It may be their last hope.

Libuše, I must ask for your help
with another matter.

What is your request, blacksmith?

My daughter has been
missing for two days.

Lost in the forest, after she and her
brother were attacked by a wolf.

How can I find her?

Do you have something
that belongs to your daughter?

Yes.

I’m Šárka.
My parents were taken by the fever.

Without them,
I am lost and alone.

Can you talk to them
and ask them for their guidance?

Do you have something
of your parents?

Here are my father’s shoes
and my mother’s bonnet.

I’m ready.

Libuše...

Libuše...

Libuše!

Šárka, the spirits of your mother and father
spoke loudly of their love for you.

They are at peace now,

and have asked that I grant you
a new home with us at Vyšehrad.

I have agreed.

Thank you, Libuše.

Blacksmith, you’ll find your daughter
along the river towards the marsh.

She lies sleeping
under a grove of alders.

Thank you, princess.
Thank you.

And to you, farmers
and your families,

blame not the storm or spirits
for your hardships;

it is your animals
who are diseased.

And you will have to kill
and burn them all.

The House Vyšehrad
will send aid,

and together we’ll survive
the winter.

There’s no way of leaving now.

Lady Libuše!

You’re indeed a worthy successor
to the great Krok.

Long live Libuše!

Long live Libuše!

Long live Libuše!

Long live Libuše!

Hey, princess...

I came here today from Stanice
to present you with this beautiful animal.

He was born on the sad night, one year ago,
on which your father passed away.

I named him Kroka,
in his honour.

Thank you.

What can I offer you in return?

Perhaps you would like
to visit me, one day.

Have you ever been to Stanica?

Not since I was a girl.

We would be honoured
to receive you.

Thank you.

I have heard rumour
you’re considering marriage.

You could enjoy a meal at my farm,
perhaps consider me.

I am an excellent cook.

You’d have a better chance
of marrying me!

- I did not ask you.
- You’re nothing but a dirty ploughman!

You don’t even own
the fields in which you toil.

Our princess can’t marry a have-nothing.

Libuše, do you see a dirty ploughman

or a man of good heart
and honest nature?

I see a dirty ploughman...

who has spoken his speech,
and whose time is up.

Will someone remove him from this circle,
so we can finish and eat?

Or will I have to come down
and do it myself?

I am sorry, Libuše.

If I would have known
you have such a fine horse,

I would not have brought Kroka.

I look forward to your visit, princess.

Libuše, you are proving yourself
to be a great leader.

Thank you, Domaslav.

Now that your year
of mourning has passed,

it may be time you did consider
taking a husband –

to strengthen and protect
the House of Vyšehrad.

Yeah.

I have all the protection I need.

You think so?

I could father a strong heir
to Vyšehrad,

and teach him how to lead our people
and how to protect our land.

Vršovec may provide a strong heir,
but a strong ruler is keen of mind.

I can promise you a son
who would govern wisely,

as I would teach him
trade and strategy.

Take this apple.

Share it, but don’t divide it.

When you do so, come back.

I might consider your proposals.

How can we share an apple
without dividing?

You have it, peasant.

Enjoy!

Would you consider their proposals?

Would you?

They didn’t propose to me.

All they want is greater influence.

When they say I want to be
a pawn in man’s pursuit of power,

they’ll forget their proposals.

And then, perhaps,
you’ll get your chance.

You proposed to arrange my marriage.

You famously avoid talk of your own.

I prefer to enjoy their company quickly.

And the part before they disappoint me.

- Why? Why?!
- What?

Do we have no tasks
requiring labour, anxiety, pain,

with which I can feel
this vast void within me?

Of course.

Stop!

Stop!

What did you see?

It’s hazy.

I can’t see anything.

Victory!

I offer you the blood
of our enemies.

The Avars have declared war on us!

This one was son of a chieftain.

And their wrath will be felt
for many years on,

if decisive action
is not taken immediately.

Trade has come to a standstill.

More time is spent on organizing
the militia and the army than on farming.

And as a people we are going hungry!

This is not a vision your father
had for this land, Libuše.

The council is too slow
in making decisions to make war.

We need a leader, Libuše.

We were ready to build
a throne for Krok,

but now, when he’s gone,

we must find a new king
to bring order

and victory!

I propose...

Domaslav.

There is another
who brings wise council,

and who’s, some might believe, better
suited for a position of such authority.

- Who?
- Name the man of whom you speak.

It is no man.

Libuše, I believe that only you,
with the support of the council,

can fill our father’s shoes.

It is you that people adore.

And you too will return this land
to its true path;

to peace and prosperity,
as you have foreseen!

We shall choose Libuše!

To be lead by a woman?

Gods, no!

This country will be destroyed
by the Avars, within a year!

I propose a king!

And we shall have a queen!

I place upon your head
the crown of Vyšehrad.

We need an army
to protect ourselves.

A woman’s subtlety only goes so far.

Agreed.

I’ll put it to the council.

When you’re recovered,
you’ll take control,

command as you see fit.

Thank you.

The way you fought the other day,
I’ve never seen a woman fight like that.

I’ll always protect you.
I’m your sword.

Look at them.

You need a distraction.

Men are afraid to desire me now,
thanks to my position on the council.

Are you thinking of taking a husband?

Why?

An hour in an old hay barn with a sturdy
young farmer will probably suffice.

The ploughman who delivered
the yearling was not intimidated.

He knew me.

He found me lying by the river,
the night my father died.

But he never guessed my station.

Where is your guard?

I’m alone.

Surely the queen has
more pressing matters

than to accept a ploughman’s
year-old invitation to visit?

A queen can do as she likes.

Kroka?
You are fully grown!

You waited a long time.

Let’s not wait any longer.

Will it be another two years
before you visit again?

I’ll come, whenever the moon is full.

What did you see?

The wealth of these lands.

Precious metals.

Beneath the mountain.

A great city will grow here.

From these shores
to the mountains in the north,

and across the river to the south.

A city?

Here?

How can you be so certain?

Because I’ll make it so.

The city will be a light,
and all within its walls will be safe.

Yes!

I think your friend is a boy.

She’s not my friend,
she’s my sister.

Teta and I are your sisters, Libuše.

Not as much as Vlasta –
she’s my best sister.

Now we’re sisters.

You cannot alter
nature’s balance like this.

I will use the resources
that are available for the good of all.

Demons of terrible power protect the wealth
that was hidden deep in our grounds

so that man would not
meddle with it!

It is in man’s nature to meddle.

You are becoming affected
by man’s greed, Libuše.

Mineral wealth is finite,

and in the vastness of the soul
entirely worthless.

The spirits will frown upon us.

Which of the spirits would deny man
a solution to his hardships;

a chance to trade and grow
and plan the future?

A future in which
the mountain is dead

and the forests annihilated?

Can you not see this?

Bring the wagon!

My mind is only clear on what we must
accomplish in the service of the people.

Then you’re doomed to fail.

The burden of leadership and wealth
will crush your once gentle spirit.

You know, if the people knew –

the queen and a ploughman –

they wouldn’t accept it.

Well, isn’t it the ploughman, giving
food to all our peer, of the highest?

You really do think
a lot of yourself, don’t you?

You think I’m funny?

Good.

I’m glad.

Let me see you laugh some more.

- No.
- Yes.

- No.
- Yes.

- No!
- Yes!

- No!
- Yes!

Stop!
I’ll have you hanged!

Stop!

If you would be ruler,

what thing would be hardest?

To be just – both towards yourself
and others too.

Let him who is just
rule this world as king;

not this half-elf sorceress
with ticklish ribs!

So you can be just, rule as king.

Together we can build the city,
to protect and feed our people.

This is my dream.

The dream is but a tale,
and nothing besides.

This man killed my brother,
and Libuše set him free!

I demand justice!

This young farmer returned from many
months in the service of our people,

fighting the raiders in the north,

to find his land ruined by pollution
from many of my mines.

And your brother, the miner,
refusing to change his ways,

they fought and your brother was killed.

This man is not a threat to anyone.
He was simply fighting for his land.

The miners believe they should be
allowed to destroy a man’s livelihood

and profit from it, while he is away,
fighting to protect their wealth.

Libuše, you created mining.

And now you judge against it.

I created mining to enable
enterprise and opportunity.

I judge against greed.

I want to see
my brother’s killer punished!

Your brother got what he deserved,
for polluting the land.

Control yourselves, please!

Silence!

May we speak?

- Do you, too, wish your rights?
- Yes, o princess.

- The right to claim your hand.
- I want my rights!

Rather have a man
up on the throne,

then he might gravely
judge a grave affair!

Ctirad shall speak his mind,

and say what scarce be denied.

The country needs a man.

A good man, at your service.

My queen, it seems
the time has come

to choose a man to join you
in ruling our land.

And what of the apple I gave you?

Did you share it wisely?

Well, speak, man!

We did not.

And if you could not solve
such a simple riddle,

what makes you think you might
wisely govern an entire land?

Because there was no solution.

An apple couldn’t be shared
without dividing it.

It was a catch!

I simply meant for you to show
you could cooperate.

Plant the apple
and share the fruits.

And you gave it to the peasant!

Then it is a sign.

I shall marry a peasant, as all nobles
completely lack wisdom,

or I shall have no marriage at all!

Why have three months passed
since I saw you last?

I have an army in the north
which I cannot supply;

the harvest has suffered because
the miners are slaughtering the farmers;

I can’t reprimand the miners,
because we need their minerals

to trade for food with the tribes
in the south,

who know we are needy
and increase their prices every day!

A queen can’t always do as she likes.

You allow the nobles to ask too much!

And you ask too little of the people.

You should tax them
for the security you provide.

You should let me promote you
into the new army –

to create a higher standing for you.
The people would accept you as my husband!

Happy is he who is content with little.

If another moon passes
that you do not come,

I will start to believe
that our love is dying.

I will come.

I’m sorry to be so distracted.

If I was not so inclined, you would
never have loved me to begin with.

Perhaps not,

but that was then.

I seek more, now.

- Libuše...
- Yes?

- The farmers’ representatives are here.
- Farmers?

They made a two-day journey;
they need to be welcomed.

- Have you forgotten?
- No.

We’ve fortified the mountain passes,
to keep the raiders in the flatlands.

Must we talk of war again?

War, and war only,
until this land is safe.

I anticipate some difficulties, tomorrow.
I need your advise.

I’m sorry. There is always
something urgent for my attention.

Another moon has passed.

She’s coming!

Who is it?

Who are you? Show yourselves!

This way!

Come on!

Forward!

This way!

Over here!

- I saw her!
- Down here!

Are you hurt?

- Come here!
- I heard something!

- I heard something over here!
- Over here!

She lives.
Take care of her.

- To me!
- There they are!

The traveller is this way!

I see something!

This way!

Hold.

What game are you playing?

No game.

I just wonder whether,
despite your fierce exterior,

you can love.

Of course.

In that case, I wonder if you could
imagine this cottage as a castle,

and remain here as my queen.

This is how you care
for an injured warrior?

Well, if I can help you forget your pain,
it must be an effective treatment.

But you’re Libuše’s love!

Libuše no longer cares for me,
nor I for her,

since she’s possessed
by her position!

Don’t touch me!
Libuše is my dearest friend!

And yet she left you here
for weeks without a visit,

without a word.

Still, I know that she loves me.

But not like I can.

Don’t.

The love between Libuše and me is dead.

Our friend’s murderer is close to Stanice.

Vlasta is nowhere to be found!

We are lost without a strong
hand to lead the army!

And I would say that our queen

is in clear need of a
man’s protection herself.

There are many candidates
to choose from.

Let her assess each of us
according to our experience and merits.

It is time that Libuše was asked
to take a king!

- A king! Of course!
- We need a king!

I am queen!

And having granted power
to govern as I see fit,

my marriage cannot be
decided by a vote.

Think that as you may, Libuše,

you will lose the support
of the council if you refuse.

I see.

I hold the reigns,
but at too light a hand.

Tis well, my lords.
I shall give you a man.

You think that I mean you.

I will spend the night alone
and ask the spirits for their guidance.

Will you travel, then,
to the other world?

No.

I know who my king shall be.

I know not his name,
just where you will find him.

Take this horse,

lead him to the parting
of the forest roads,

there loose the reign
and follow after him.

You will find a man
who since midday will be nigh,

sits at an iron table at his meal

and breaks his bread alone.

As sure as the sign when you, Domaslav,
gave my apple to a peasant,

it is a peasant who will be king.

Hey, Kroka!

And here a man sits at an iron table,
just as Libuše foresaw.

Fear not, good stranger.

Did I show you fear?

You have not even given me
the chance to show you hospitality.

Here, drink my water.

If you’re hungry, share my meal.

Our queen has received
a vision from the spirits.

It is the will of the people
that she should marry,

but the will of destiny
that she should marry you.

- And what of my will?
- You are to be king,

and marry the most beautiful
woman in the land.

Why would you resist
such an opportunity?

It is everything a man could want.

All I want is right here –

my plough, my livestock,
my freedom.

The queen may come to me,
if she wishes to marry.

I will not deliver such
a ridiculous suggestion.

I ask you once again,
and for the last time:

will you come to Vyšehrad
to marry our queen?

If you resist, we are instructed
to take you by force.

I will come.

You will come today?

I will, but only
after I’ve finished eating.

Why do you eat from an iron table?

Because I will rule you
with an iron fist!

How easily you forget me.

As I told you, I do not see
that I have a choice.

You told me you no longer cared
for Libuše, nor she did for you,

that the love between you was gone.

Sometimes you have
to make a decision

between what you want
and what is right.

I am sorry.

This horde is my father’s treasure
and the harvest of our nation’s growth.

It will pay for building the city.

The city will be the heart
of the new state.

With a ploughman as king.
How glorious.

I’m sure that the mighty Franks
and the lords of Byzantium

will send their gifts
in brotherly alliance.

You are a man.
You’re stubbornness is proof.

This is what the people want.

You will be to them the triumph of
your sex. They will gladly follow you.

Oh, Libuše, I was once to you
the triumph of my sex!

Why could you not be
the girl I found by the river, again –

your realm nothing but
the grassy banks;

your crown the morning dew;
and you its single precious jewel?

This castle...

this land...

they and I belong to the people, first.

And yet, once you were mine.

And I want to believe that you
could be like that again.

I know how you struggle
to be freed of this place.

I can never be free of this place!

Join me here.

We can never see each other again.

Commands offend me.

Then I’ll beg.

I neglected you when you
were on your farm, alone.

I’ll never neglect you again.

Join me here, please.

I will accept.

But you must know
it will never be again as it was

when I found you
lying by the river.

When you left me
waiting for you in vain,

I had to kill my love for you.

I will accept, because I want
to help you for our love that was,

and because you believe
it is the best for this country.

I will provide the iron fist you need,

but that is all I have to offer.

Long live Přemysl,
king of Vyšehrad!

Your city was a great vision;
I see it now –

a solution to the problems
of government.

I was wrong to doubt you.

I need a name.

- You!
- Yes, sire?

What is that for?

Práh – a threshold.

Prague.

A doorway to the world.

The city will be built in time.

For now, your attention
is required elsewhere.

Where?

It’s not the time to play, love.
I have ideas that just won’t wait.

Here’s my share.

- Sire.
- Thank you.

A quarter of my crop.

And this stone pole is the most important
stone in the sacrificial grounds.

At the top we have
the most important god –

he’s called Perun,
the god of thunder.

Zora...

- Zora...
- Leave.

Sorry, Sire.

I’m glad to see your farm has recovered.

Thanks to you, my queen.

I’d be hanging from a tree,
had you not intervened.

I owe you my life.

You owe others your life –

those who died that you might live.

You and I started this war.

I think of that every day.
To what do I owe the honour?

No one thing.

Just simply travelling the country,
noticing how things have changed.

My husband has taken
many of my duties,

so I’m free to go
and do as I please, again,

as I did in my youth.

Anything that I can offer
is, of course, yours.

Well...

perhaps...

there is something.

Anything.

It’s curious –

I always imagined us in a hay barn
as we are at this very moment.

And you, covered in sweat,
in the toil of the foam,

and I in exactly this dress.

And you put your hands on me,

and you love me.

But... you must love the king.

- Yes.
- So?

What interest can you
possibly have in me?

I don’t propose to fall in love with you.

Next time I will take your head.

I’m sorry. I’m sorry.

Help him.

What is this commotion at the gates?

Farmers demand an explanation
for Rozhoň’s death.

Rozhoň is not dead.
I spoke with him, yesterday.

Did you?

Yes, we passed his farm.

I had him executed.

You what?

Without a court?

I finally put an end
to this year-old conflict.

The miners are satisfied.

And although the farmers grumble,
they know justice has been served.

A land war will be avoided.

Who knew, when you sent
an emissary to follow a horse

to find the man
to solve this crisis,

there was such a simple answer?

Kazi...

It’s been an age since anyone
has seen or heard from you.

You promised,
when the council chose you,

that the forest would be my domain.

But now there will be no forest left.

- Your new king is destroying it.
- He’s creating new land,

to grow food and opening
trade routes.

One man alone cannot
destroy the forest.

But men don’t work alone, do they?

They crawl all over
everything like ants,

devouring and sucking the good
from all they meddle with.

Why did you cast your lot
with human kind?

They possess you.

You know I love them.

And I’m only really myself
when I’m in their midst.

The forest rings with the axe.

The trunks of
a thousand-year-old oaks

are felled for little good reason –

to reinforce mine shafts,
and burn in furnaces.

In the mountains’ heart –

seams, that were shut from light
since creation’s day, are broken.

It is too much
for the earth to bear.

Your king must relent!

It’s already too late
for this poor creature,

the snakes, the mole,

the proud, free falcon...

Kazi, you must rest.

You cannot save the entire
forest by yourself.

You allow yourself to feel too much.

Přemysl is responsible for this.

And you’ve become
too weak to stop him.

You’re beneath him, now.

He has enslaved your will

and eclipsed your soul.

There’s no happiness in your future.

Come back with me,

to Vyšehrad.

You can rest.

The river will be
the lifeblood of Praha.

We will build ships and load them
with our country’s unused beans and grains

and our women’s fabrics
and the silver of the mountains.

- To trade.
- But this is not our way.

We are farmers, not city people.
And definitely not sailors.

In order to grow, we must change.

And happy is he
who is content with little.

The naive words
of a simple ploughman

who was not entrusted
with peace and security.

This ploughman, he spoke
a simple wisdom –

one that you should consider carefully
before dismissing.

The city is a brave proposition
by a great leader.

Why don’t we ask Libuše
to use her vision,

to tell us whether the city
will be a success?

Quiet!

If it is the wish of the people,
then I will gaze into the other world,

and ask of the future of your city –

your Praha.

I see a great city,

whose fame will touch the stars.

You intend to leave behind your curly
cottages where each was self-sufficient,

to be part of a large hole you call “state”,
but its the only value is use and profit.

Like men, the gods will
also join to make one,

and Universal Love would be His name.

But love of all is nothing humans can feel,
merely a thought,

and the thought will shrink until it is
a word, and for the one sake you will kill.

This land will be destroyed
by plagues and wars.

I see the dead piled in the streets, under a
sky burning with the blood of your children.

And your new god
will look at you with no mercy.

And your old gods will be
silent and forgotten.

And the shining gates to the land of souls
will close to man forever.

We may lose our way.

No...

build your city.

It will thrive and prosper.

You will rule and impress your name
on a time to come.

But what have I?

Lie with me.

Return me to the nights
of the full moon,

by a crackling fire.

If only you had accepted when I
proposed the very same thing,

many years ago.

I accept.

Our city will have an heir.

Who’s there?
Who’s approaching?

Come forward, Domaslav.

I come to you
with a proposition, Vlasta.

One, I hope, you will
consider very carefully.

Of course.

Why not?

It has been...

many years since you cast out over
my military services before the council.

No one can doubt
your military prowess now.

You’ve protected this land
for many years.

Speak.

I don’t hold a grudge.

Is there somewhere
we could speak alone?

What is your proposition?

Well, it is exactly that –
a proposition...

of marriage.

You still command Libuše’s army,
which is Přemysl’s army, now.

You have their loyalty.

I have powerful connections –
merchants, wealthy miners.

Přemysl is too hard,

and Libuše’s power to inspire
has faded.

If you march on Vyšehrad,

and put them to the sword
before they produce an heir,

together we can take power

and give the people
a better king and queen,

in whom all will gladly serve.

Libuše is my friend.

And he who threatens her
risks his own life in doing so.

In this case, I will just...

take your eyes.

I will be queen,
but with no man at my side.

Vlasta, I... merely
suggested an alliance.

I... didn’t betray you,
I didn’t betray Libuše.

Please!
I have much to offer you!

Please!

Please!

No, not my eye!

No! Please!

Vlasta!

My time has come.

This land is changing.

You will be the only one left
of the old ways.

This is for you.

But your children
will carry the old ways in them,

just as you have carried
the gift of our mother.

And they will rule over this land.

And part of it will be your rule –

even if they don’t know it.

I am Vlasta, and I declare war
on the men of this land.

They will die, because they took away
the crown from my dear friend Libuše

and forced her to marry
a low-born ploughman.

We maidens will fight until
the men will beg us on their knees

to restore the old order.

Because we are few and without
support from that bastard ploughman,

we will ambush them
and stab from the back

and spread fear and terror amongst them.

They will return the crown
of Vyšehrad to me,

and I will put it again
where it belongs –

on my darling Libuše’s
sweet head.

What has happened here, sister?

How did things change so?

We’ve heard terrible rumours –

the killing of innocent men
because of their sex.

The people say you are
practicing a dark side of magic.

I’m merely fulfilling my destiny –

to return this land to its true path,

to be ruled by a woman.

You caused terrible bloodshed
and suffering.

Any leader must be prepared
to accept losses to achieve their goal.

I caused many deaths in the past,
in your name also.

Vlasta, do you not remember what
my father taught us about kindness?

Libuše, if you will support me,
leave Vyšehrad

and return to the life
I know you miss.

I will gain control and
return this land to its path.

My friend,

I barely recognize you
beneath this new cloak of hurt and anger.

I miss my sister,
who once protected me from every peril.

I’ll always protect you.

Bring Domaslav!

To meet his old friend,

whom he once tried hard to marry,

and then tried hard to kill.

He will remain here and suffer
for his thoughts of harming you!

I do not wish anyone
to suffer on my account!

We have all suffered on your account.

Libuše, you have hurt us all!

With your great beauty and kindness
you’ve broken every heart you touched.

But I will protect you always,
as I will love you always.

It is your husband I will kill,
to remove him from the throne.

Perhaps you remain queen,
and I your king, as it once was.

War is coming.

Is there no way to spare her?

Fine.

I will send Ctirad with an offer for peace.

He can charm any woman,
even Vlasta.

I know how you feel about her,

but I swore to rule this land
with an iron fist,

and with an iron fist I will bring
this ludicrous rebellion to an end.

Ctirad...

Let us have a look, milord.

I’d better go.

You may follow!

What an unexpected delight.

I always come to the forest
to marvel at nature’s beauty,

and... here is to nature
at its finest.

Don’t worry, dear.
You’re safe, now.

And whoever did this to you,
will pay dearly.

For I am a swordsman
of some renown.

Kill them!

Nezamysl, son of Přemysl!

At last an heir to the throne.

Nezamysl!

Where is Ctirad?

We need a song
to remember this day.

Hey!
There’s someone approaching!

It’s one of Ctirad’s men!

- Bring him to me.
- They sent you this, sir.

Yes, approach.

Vlasta sent you this.

- They sent me his tongue.
- What?

His tongue!

Assemble all who will fight.

What of Libuše, sire?

She’s recovering.

We will return in two days.

It is time to put the women
in their place.

Gather your arms!

Men!

This is the fortress.

Give them our terms.

The king has come to claim this place.

He does not wish to slaughter
the wives and daughters of Vyšehrad.

Will you resist?

If you do, your fortress will fall,

and none will be spared.

By the king’s merciful decree, however,

you may send out a champion –

one who might fight your cause,

whose victory will be honoured
with a truce,

so that your lives may be saved.

The women will become fearful,

and Vlasta will come out
to fight alone.

She has no chance
against Mizislav.

I will go.

I am your champion.

It is my error that must be corrected.

I will fight.

Your fortress cannot hold
against the army.

The women will be slaughtered
if they fight.

They don’t need to fight!

I’ll kill you!

And I will be king!

And women will be as they were
before you poisoned the house of Vyšehrad!

I will kill you, Vlasta,
but the others will be spared.

They’ll return to their homes
and families.

And everything will be
as it should be.

We will see!

Was my mother really able
to see the future?

Your mother was a part tree elf.

The spirit of the forest
was strong within her.

She’s always close to you,
because the river carries her spirit,

as it flows through the heart
of our country.

Is it true, father, that my mother
pulls men to the bottom and drowns them,

and that she uses magic
to trick them into the river?

There is no such thing as magic, son.

No such thing as magic?

Not anymore.

{\an5}Subtitles by
Vahlto