Immortal Beloved (1994) Movie Script

"Ludwig van Beethoven,
the man who inherited...
and increased the immortal fame
of Handel and Bach...
of Haydn and Mozart,
is now no more.
He was an artist,
and who will stand beside him?
He was an artist...
and what he was,
he was only through music.
The thorns of life
had wounded him deeply...
so he held fast to his art...
even when the gate through which
it entered was shut.
Music spoke through a deafened ear
to he who could no longer hear it.
He carried the music
in his heart.
Because he shut himself off
from the world, they called him hostile.
They said he was unfeeling...
and called him callous.
But he was not hard of heart.
It is the finest blades
that are most easily blunted...
bent or broken.
He withdrew from his fellow man
after he had given them everything...
and had received nothing in return.
He lived alone...
because he found no second self.
Thus he was, thus he died.
Thus he will live for all time".
Which one of you is the thief?
Produce the money,
or I will have you arrested!
Then arrest me!
I took him in when nobody
could bear his company!
And now you want to get paid, eh?
- Bank shares.
- Give them to me!
The money is mine!
Here. Here is his will.
"I declare that my brothers
Caspar and Johann...
are the heirs to my fortune,
if so it can be called".
As Caspar is long dead,
that leaves me! Just me!
Well, give me my money!
This is his final testament.
"All my music
and all the capital of my estate..
shall go to my sole heir,
my immortal beloved".
Signed, "Ludwig van Beethoven".
A letter is enclosed.
- This is...
- Come on, now.
Don't keep me in suspense.
Who is it?
- Nobody.
- Oh, not so.
The letter bears no name.
"To my immortal beloved".
"My angel, my all,
my other self".
The maestro was nursing
a secret passion.
I never heard such words from his lips.
Who could this be?
The only love he held
was for himself.
I suffered his insults, his temper.
I suffered in silence when he spat
the food I made back in my face.
That money is ours!
It is not.
It doesn't matter anymore.
He is gone.
We have his music.
Destroy this letter.
It would only show
his disordered life to the world.
It's his dying wish.
We owe him at least that.
You have no authority in this matter.
I have his authority.
Still the faithful dog, eh?
He was my friend.
What friend would be so cruel?
What brother so uncaring?
You know nothing of my brother!
Take me to Karlsbad.
"My angel, my all, my other self.
Just a few words today
and that in pencil, yours.
Only tomorrow will I know for certain
where I am to stay.
A worthless waste of time
and such.
Why this deep sorrow?
If we could be united,
we would feel this pain no longer".
- Good afternoon, sir.
- Good afternoon, Frau...
- Herr Schindler.
- Let me find your reservation.
I'm afraid I don't have
a reservation.
Oh, no matter. We have always room
for a gentleman such as yourself.
Is this the address for this hotel?
One moment.
Ja, of course.
Do you know the name
Ludwig van Beethoven?
- The composer?
- Yes.
I knew him.
- Did he ever stay here?
- Are you a policeman?
Then I will not answer your questions.
Oh, please, I'm trying
to conclude his affairs.
Ah, van Beethoven is dead.
Alas, yes.
Best thing for him.
He was a terrible man.
Then he stayed here?
A long time ago.
Too long to remember.
I can remember only the damage.
The damage?
I was never paid for the damage.
He smashed it all up, everything.
There was a chair, three florins.
Window, five.
- I had to paint everything.
- Frau Streicher.
Would this be sufficient?
There was a woman.
We had been expecting
Herr van Beethoven for days.
She came instead.
She said he was to join her.
She registered in his room.
Under what name?
illegible. Then...
there was this terrible storm,
a deluge.
The woman hid in her room...
Ashamed to show her face,
I'd say.
And then, the letter arrived.
You opened the letter.
I had to. How else would I know
who it was for?
I only read his signature.
"My angel, my all, my other self.
Just a few words...
and that in pencil..."
I sent it to her room at once.
She can't have liked what she read.
She left at once, right away.
Left without a word to anybody.
And then, of course,
Herr van Beethoven arrives.
When he found she was gone,
he went mad.
He was like a madman.
Threw a chair out of the window.
I called the police.
I was frightened of him.
Herr van Beethoven!
Open up!
Here is her signature.
Is that a "J" or a "G"?
It looks more like an "A" to me.
She was haughty like a countess.
What did she look like?
Never got a proper look at her.
I don't think she wanted
to be recognized.
Herr Schindler.
Lock the door.
But, Countess...
Lock the door.
We must not be disturbed.
Not everything they say
about me is true.
Holz was here
with the other one, the weasel.
How could Luigi
have such a vile brother?
I hope they were in good health.
They say you have
stolen Luigi's money.
They thought you would come here.
I told them nothing.
The price for my silence
is that you must tell me everything.
I'm afraid that's impossible.
It falls upon me to interrogate you.
Why should I submit to that?
That is what he wanted.
The maestro.
What I shall tell you
will never leave this room?
On my word of honor, Contessa.
There is substance to the rumors.
I was the great love of Luigi's life.
I first heard the name
Beethoven when I was 17.
I had heard that his music
aroused such passion as to be dangerous.
Some thought it obscene
and unsuitable for the young.
I wrote to my cousins,
Theresa and Josephine.
They lived in Vienna,
the great music capital of the world.
Surely they would know more.
Indeed they did.
They knew him intimately.
More intimately than
they admitted at the time.
Most nights I dreamt of him.
And then,
Father was posted to Vienna.
We were invited to Prince Lichnowsky's
palace for a musical evening.
Beethoven was going to be there.
I knew he must be so noble...
so refined in feeling,
so cultured.
I could hardly wait.
I was going to hear him play.
That music affected me like
none I had ever heard before.
And as for Beethoven...
I was soon overcome.
I feared I might faint.
Oh. I didn't see you.
I have to go back.
Oh, you are leaving me
to listen to that ass...
who plays like a kitchen maid,
all clipped and staccato.
This music is beautiful.
I was told that the Viennese
had superior taste.
Clearly in your case,
it is not true.
You must be Julia Guicciardi.
I hear there's quite a contest
for your charms.
Sir, you're rude and offensive.
I'm leaving.
- Do you play the piano?
- What?
I intend to be your teacher.
I shall call for you
tomorrow at 10:00.
You shall be barred from the house.
I could not believe the outrage.
This ugly man, surely a servant,
had called at the front door.
I have an appointment.
She has a piano.
A gentleman is here to see you.
He says he's your new music teacher.
Father, there has been a mistake.
This man is a common oat.
He accosted me last night.
Send him away at once.
I will not! It would be a shame
on our household.
May i present Ludwig van Beethoven?
So you must attend my next recital.
I heard you last week.
I remember.
The music was beautiful.
Surely not that bad.
I found the playing exquisite.
It's that damned Beethoven
I can't stand.
People only claim to admire his stuff
so as not to seem ignorant.
My dear husband, don't confirm
your stupidity in front of the guests.
We all speak frankly here.
Tell us your opinion.
Heavens, no.
I was not looking for flattery.
It was too clipped and staccato.
There was not enough singing tone.
Julia, as you can see, is being taught
by the maestro himself.
He comes every day to the house.
Every day?
Is that wise?
Why do you say that?
He's a harsh teacher.
He's a scoundrel
and a republican.
It is even said that he is
a follower of Napoleon.
He'd have us all in the arms
of Madame La Guillotine.
He travels in polite society
on his reputation as a virtuoso...
but flies into a fit if anyone...
even dares suggest
he sit at the keyboard.
Why will he no longer play?
Beethoven is a strange
and obstinate man.
He says it makes him
feel like a servant...
and he serves no masters.
But he takes the money.
You think because I did not stop you
that I am not listening.
A mistake is nothing.
But the fact that
you thump out the notes...
without the least sensitivity
to their meaning is unforgivable.
And your lack of passion
is unforgivable.
I shall have to beat you.
I am writing a new symphony.
It will cause a scandal
because of its subject.
- Tell me.
- Here. Take my arm.
They should make way for us,
not us for them!
Their days are over.
Your world is finished!
Oh, shut up!
When I was a boy, they would have
had you arrested for less.
But now they are scared
of what is happening in France.
- You know why wigs went out of fashion?
- Why?
Because too many ended up
in the bottom of baskets.
But I am a countess, too, Luigi.
They are scared.
Scared of Napoleon.
That is why Napoleon
is the subject of my symphony.
I have here
a proposal of marriage..
from a composer.
- Count Gallenberg.
- Oh.
You were thinking of Beethoven?
Julia, the gossip is everywhere.
- He also has proposed.
- Then there is no contest.
- You love Beethoven?
- Yes.
I cannot give my consent.
We are not wealthy, Julia.
He is a man without rank,
fortune or permanent engagement.
His character and temperament
are so peculiar that I doubt...
any would find happiness with him.
- He's a genius.
- Perhaps.
But in the last year he has not
played nor published a single note.
There are those who say there is
some infirmity that prevents him.
Untrue gossip! Lies!
Has he played for you?
We made a bargain. If I could
prove Luigi could still play...
Father would give his consent.
Obviously a fine countess.
Dear brother...
you are going up in the world.
Hand it over, you ignoramus.
As your secretary,
it is my solemn duty to read this.
"Beloved Luigi, my father
has recently taken delivery...
of a new pianoforte
from Broadwood in London.
It is of the latest design and is
the first of its kind in Vienna.
Tomorrow morning I will send away
the servants and we shall all be out.
I have done this so that you might try
this new invention undisturbed".
What is the meaning of this? What
kind of trick have you played on me?
Stop it, Luigi.
- Herr Beethoven, I beg you.
- Now I see.
- I see perfectly.
- We mean you no harm.
- A little test!
- Luigi, wait!
It is terrible to rob me
in this way...
of my most treasured feelings!
Father can go to hell!
I bid you wait!
It's no use. He can't hear you!
He's deaf!
A month later
I married Count Gallenberg.
And you never heard from him again?
He wrote to me.
It was...
After the war,
there had been some...
It was a bad time.
They who think me hostile...
obstinate or misanthropic...
how unjust they are to me...
for they do not know
the secret reason I appear that way.
It is not possible for me
to say, "Speak louder.
Shout. I am deaf".
How can I live if my enemies,
who are many...
believe I no longer possess
the one sense that should be perfect...
to a higher degree in me
than in others?
Not so fast.
So what will you do?
See every shallow countess
Ludwig gave a dedication to?
They are all liars
who want a piece of him now he is gone.
I have the lady's signature.
I shall study his correspondence
to find the hand that matches.
It is illegible.
You are wasting your time.
- No court will uphold this nonsense.
- Help me then.
Are you mad?
Help you to cheat me?
I will tell you this.
There is no lady
at the end of your search.
Ludwig was a woman hater.
Look at how he behaved with Johanna.
He had every right. Your brother
took a bride of low character.
You are too much under Ludwig's
influence to see the truth.
He wanted Caspar under his thumb.
Running his errands.
He hated Johanna
because she took him away.
There she is.
Oh, she's so beautiful.
- A marvelous creature.
- She will be mine.
So, you would betray me for that?
Where is your book? Here.
She can be bought.
- All women can be bought.
- You are insulting the woman I love.
At first, it will
be all enticements.
Then, snap! The trap shuts.
There's always a price to pay.
I would never betray you
for one of those creatures.
Brothers, I have wonderful news.
She has finally consented.
- You are to be wed?
- Yes!
You explain to him.
May I...
present my bride?
Is this a joke?
You cannot be serious.
By all means, copulate with her.
But marriage? What for?
You will be a laughingstock.
Every farmhand in the region
has enjoyed her for free.
Why should you pay more?
I know you cannot hear me,
and I don't care.
What I have to say
is for Caspar, not you.
I have had lovers...
but that is not a crime.
I told you it was impossible.
I only want what is right.
He was jealous of his brother.
Why, she will destroy him.
Jealous of his happiness.
I'm Ludwig van Beethoven,
and I need your help.
Break the door down.
What are you playing at?
Arrest that whore.
- Don't touch her!
- Arrest that whore.
That is slander.
We were married yesterday.
She is with child.
Now leave!
He behaved no better
when I married Therese.
He wanted us both
at his beck and call.
Give up the search.
I cannot.
I have my reasons.
I will find this lady.
And she will claim her legacy
with the full force of the law.
"The journey was dreadful.
The coach had to go and break
down on such a terrible road.
And for no reason,
just a country road.
I have to see you.
However much you love me,
I love you more.
Never hide yourself from me".
Excuse me. I'm looking for
the Countess Erddy.
I'm looking for the Countess Erddy.
You do not recognize me?
Please, sit.
Join me for dinner.
- Countess.
- Anna Marie.
These are my people I'm home now.
I don't have to play the countess.
I'm free!
Poor Louis.
I miss him so much.
His death has left a void.
The way they treated him...
disgusted me.
He was too good for them.
His fire...
offended their small brains.
But not you.
I could match his temperament.
You gave him rooms at your palace?
I wanted him near me.
Was he your lover?
From the beginning.
From the beginning.
That was how I met Louis...
and how the world
learned of his deafness.
I was separated from my husband.
I lived an independent life in Vienna
with my three children.
I will arrange a housekeeper.
Oh, I had one.
She cheated me.
We had thought of Napoleon
as a liberator...
a force for change.
Now we saw the truth.
had declared himself emperor...
and set out to conquer the world.
He said he brought freedom
from the tyranny of kings.
But he was Saturn,
gobbling up his children.
His cannon fired night and day...
on the city of Vienna.
Leave her alone!
There is a gentleman
here to see you.
I cannot receive anybody.
I think he is deaf.
He will not go away.
The countess will see you now.
Your son...
We will speak in music.
Napoleon was victorious.
The whole of Europe was at his feet.
He took a Hapsburg princess
as his bride...
and set up court at Schoenbrun Palace.
He proved himself no different
than any aristocrat.
Everybody was betrayed.
This was the way
of the modern world.
The year Louis lived with us...
was the happiest of my life.
And, I think, of his too.
He opened his heart to me.
He called me
his father confessor.
He told me everything.
You must have loved him
very, very much.
With all my heart.
And he you.
I don't think so. No.
Then he was a fool!
I like you better drunk.
- It's good to talk about him.
- Yeah.
But is this why
you came all this way?
No, not only.
You said there was
some unfinished business.
There is.
But how can I help you, Anton?
Perhaps it's nothing.
And perhaps it's the key to him.
Perhaps they're right
and I should let it go, but I cannot.
- It's impossible for me.
- But why?
It was that damned sonata...
the "Kreutzer".
At the time I entertained
ambitions of a musical career.
I'd gone to Vienna to study
and was fortunate enough...
to be taken by Schuppanzigh
as a pupil.
He and George Bridgetower,
the famous virtuoso from Africa...
were about to premiere
this new Beethoven sonata...
at Count Razumovsky's that evening...
and I was allowed
to attend the rehearsal.
It was there that the seed
of a mystery was planted...
that haunts me to this day.
Do you like it?
I cannot hear them.
But I know they are
making a hash of it.
What do you think?
Music is a dreadful thing.
What is it?
I don't understand it.
What does it do?
It exalts the soul.
Utter nonsense If you hear
a marching band, is your soul exalted?
No, you march.
If you hear a waltz, you dance.
If you hear a mass,
you take communion.
It is the power of music...
to carry one directly
into the mental state...
of the composer.
The listener has no choice.
It is like hypnotism.
So, now...
what was in my mind
when I wrote this?
A man is trying
to reach his lover.
His carriage has broken down
in the rain.
The wheels stuck in the mud.
She will only wait so long.
is the sound of his agitation.
"This is how it is..."
the music is saying.
"Not how you are used to being.
Not how you are used to thinking.
But like this".
Who was the woman?
He never told me.
I knew better than to ask.
He made me see the world
in an entirely new light.
I abandoned my petty ambitions.
I fetched and carried for him.
I wrote his letters and smoothed over
his domestic disputes.
I became his secretary.
Oh, the hag has sold it in the market
for a souvenir.
Oh, no.
It's lost.
Gone forever.
Maybe not.
Ludwig was convinced he had left
the sketch for his new symphony...
in the safekeeping
of his brother Caspar.
- My God. Here.
- Uncle!
The brothers had barely spoken
for eight years.
This is Herr Schindler.
This is my brother Caspar...
and my nephew, young Karl.
Had I realized this,
I would have stopped him.
It is good to see you.
I need the papers
I entrusted to you.
They were all returned to you.
I said, your papers
are not here.
Where are my notes?
I would rather he not cause a scene
in front of the boy.
- What did the whore say?
- Get out of my house!
You've thrown away my music.
You and this foul slut
you call a wife.
- You have betrayed me!
- Maestro!
Maestro, please!
Stop it!
He's sick!
Never return to this house!
He has consumption.
Caspar died
before the year was out...
but there was no relief
in his death.
Rather, it sent Ludwig
on a path of action...
that would lead to his destruction.
That man.
He rooms with her.
My brother's bed is not yet cold...
and he is climbing in.
If he says nasty things about me,
don't listen. None of it is true.
- Promise?
- I promise.
I will come and see you
every day.
Come in.
Is this the lad?
"By order of the Landrechte...
Ludwig van Beethoven has been appointed
the legal guardian of his nephew Karl...
owing to the low moral character
of his mother, Johanna van Beethoven.
Rights of visitation for the mother will
be at the discretion and convenience...
of the legal guardian".
Too watery.
Then we shall have to find
someone who can cook.
She has a swinish face anyway.
- Were you taught music?
- Yes.
I have a gift for you.
- Can you read?
- Yes.
Let me show you.
You shall be a musician.
I want to be a soldier.
A composer?
No. A soldier.
I gave my first concert
when I was your age.
I was terrible.
Your grandfather thought that he was
going to make a fortune out of me...
as a child prodigy.
Like Mozart's old man.
But I was pigheaded.
I wouldn't play that tinkly,
pretty stuff that was in vogue then.
But the keyboards of the day
were not up to it.
The first time I played at court,
I broke four strings.
Herr Beethoven!
The boy is hardly a Mozart,
is he?
I was 12...
but Father told them I was nine.
Mother died of consumption...
and I became
the head of the family.
Your papa...
I loved most of all.
As I love you...
my dear Karl.
His eyes shone with joy...
when he looked at the boy.
All the love in his rich and deep nature
seemed to concentrate...
on this boy.
There was no more tender father.
You should hear him play.
He is going to be a great virtuoso.
You spoil him.
Schindler tells me
you've written nothing.
Well, I have no time.
And besides...
all the servants that Schindler sends me
are scoundrels.
You are impossible.
You and I...
Could Karl...
not replace
the son that you lost?
I know what it is to lose a son.
I know the sorrow Johanna feels.
- She has no right to him!
- She's his mother!
She's his mother!
What new insanity is this?
It has come to our attention
that you have been bribing servants...
in order to have access to the boy
in secret...
while you well know that Herr Beethoven
would not allow...
You are talking about my son.
My son, who I have not seen for a year,
who is being taught to hate me.
The decree of the court states...
I know what it says.
Can you look me in the eye and tell me
a mother has no right to see her son?
I will fight this.
You will lose.
He has many enemies.
The filth was bad enough.
That man is mad.
He cannot hear a thing.
He's always shouting and yelling.
The landlord would chuck him out
from his carrying on.
The boy is just as bad.
His uncle encouraged him.
I overheard them discussing how
they was going to beat me, so I left.
Was the boy kept clean?
He'd go a month
without fresh underwear.
That man cannot look after himself,
let alone a child.
I would now like to call
Karl van Beethoven.
Good afternoon, Karl.
Good afternoon.
How does your uncle treat you?
He has a hot temper?
- Do you fear his temper?
- No.
- Did he ever punish you?
- Only when I deserved it.
Who would you prefer to live with?
Your uncle or your mother?
Do you want to stay
with your uncle?
Speak up.
- Yes.
- You don't sound certain.
It would be better
if Uncle had someone to be with him...
because he is hard of hearing
and can't talk to me.
In fact, he is stone deaf.
Do you love your mother?
Do you miss her?
Then would you not prefer
to live with her?
Uncle needs me.
What I would prefer...
is that we might all live together.
This way, gentlemen, please.
Herr Beethoven,
our most accomplished composer.
It is an honor.
Chancellor Metternich...
due to his infirmity, Herr Beethoven
has requested that I speak for him.
As you wish.
His case in the magistracies
is not going well.
That is, Frau Beethoven
has bribed witnesses...
Sir, I need your help.
My young nephew, Karl...
he is being corrupted
by this woman's poisonous carryings on.
- What Herr Beethoven means...
- Why should I help you, Beethoven?
"Metternich is a worse tyrant
than Napoleon".
That was recorded last Tuesday
at the Swan Tavern.
"Metternich should be forced
to eat my shit".
And so on, and so forth.
Herr Beethoven,
there are many forces in Austria...
that foment revolt.
I like a lively discussion
as much as the next man...
but I fear that these days
we cannot allow quite so much...
How can I put it?
Perhaps it would be better
if our great artists...
were a little more circumspect.
Herr Beethoven proposes
that he write a grand oratorio...
praising Austria
and your magnificent diplomacy...
at the Congress of Vienna...
that has secured the peace
for all of Europe.
This court...
has seen fit to ordain...
that Johanna van Beethoven...
shall be excluded from...
This court is corrupt!
Now that the boy was delivered
to Ludwig, body and soul...
the deaf genius began in earnest what
was to be his most tragic endeavor...
to make his ward a great virtuoso.
For five long years
this was his goal...
and in those five years
Ludwig wrote nothing.
Not the oratorio
he promised Metternich.
Not the mass he promised
the London Philharmonic Society.
Not the great symphony
he spoke of endlessly.
In Vienna they thought he was finished...
deaf, written-out.
Rossini had performed
The Thieving Magpie..
and Italian opera was all the rage.
Beethoven was no longer performed.
It's late.
I'm sorry, sir.
It's disgusting.
Why does she disobey me? She knows
my bowel is in a terrible state.
You're trying to poison me!
Well, she might appear
plump and pretty to you...
but she's a vulgar bitch.
Gossips about me all over town.
Yes, sir?
Your food is poison.
You're fired.
You foul old bastard.
Where are you going?
Away from you.
Well, leave me, then.
You're evil.
Like your mother.
Leave me alone with no food.
Have you seen Karl?
You're worthless!
I'm sending for the doctor now.
Play for me.
Not now.
It will calm me.
I found this the other day.
"The Maestro,
Ludwig van Beethoven...
has the pleasure
to announce a concert...
which will be the debut of his nephew
and ward, Karl van Beethoven...
a prodigy instructed
by the Maestro himself".
Why, this is wonderful. The very thing
that will raise his spirits.
You must be very excited.
Anton, have you ever heard me play?
- No, but...
- You have to help me.
I'm at the end of my tether.
Endless hours at the keyboard.
For what?
He cannot hear
my ham-fisted playing.
He does no work.
All he does is
scribble incomprehensible phrases.
Then he bellows this stupid,
childish tune at the top of his lungs.
He says this is the motif
of a grand symphony.
I think it's ridiculous.
- That cannot be.
- But it is.
I think he's going mad.
I am to abandon my plans, eh?
I am placing...
intolerable pressure..
on Karl, eh?
He is a...
a mediocre talent.
There are always these...
asinine fellows like Schindler...
with their...
commonplace opinions...
from their commonplace minds.
Schindler is right.
Anton Schindler...
bad violinist...
knows more about music
than Ludwig van Beethoven.
This is too much.
You're torturing the boy.
I always thought
that you were a bore...
and an ass...
but you've had your uses,
and now you have none.
Get out.
Get out.
Wake up, bastard!
Wake up!
He's gone...
on your account.
My Karl has shot himself.
A farmer found him in the ruins.
He carried him here on his cart.
I fear the worst.
I was expecting you.
Karl was a bungler with firearms.
The bullet
did not penetrate his skull.
He did not die.
But the legend grew in Vienna
of Ludwig's cruelty to the boy...
of how he drove him to a desperate act.
Those who had
silently disliked him...
now shouted their derision...
from the rooftops.
There is a letter.
I must find this lady.
He bequeathed
his entire estate to her.
It was not written to me.
Then who?
It was she who came between us.
I loved him completely...
but he could never
return that sentiment.
He could not forget her.
Who is she?
I failed him.
We all failed him.
He gave us so much.
We couldn't even
make his life tolerable.
This last wish
must be as he wanted.
Tell me.
Tell me her name.
The answer was always
in front of you.
"While still in my bed...
my thoughts turn to you...
my immortal beloved.
What will you do?
Some happy, some sad...
I don't know.
waiting to see
whether fate will hear us.
I don't know.
I can live only completely
with you or not at all.
Yes. It must be".
Go to her.
It must be.
May we speak in private?
I have nothing to hide
from my workers.
I implore you.
As you can see,
I am very busy.
Frau Beethoven...
may I see a sample
of your handwriting?
- Why?
- Please.
Indulge me.
Is this your handwriting?
What is this?
A page from the registry
of a hotel in Karlsbad.
I would like you to go.
by you.
Did you ever meet Ludwig
in Karlsbad?
You can hardly be unaware of the manner
in which I suffered at his hands.
I find the question
as insulting as it is impudent.
What are you implying?
There can be no peace
without the truth.
For you, maybe.
But I have made my peace
with Ludwig.
I forgave him
because of the "Ode to Joy".
When they announced the premiere
of the Ninth Symphony...
the gossip was everywhere.
Ludwig had fought with the singers.
He had fought the theater.
Even though
I had hated him for so long...
even though
he had tried to destroy me...
I went.
I had to go.
I knew it would be the last time.
I could not see him...
and I imagined
some last-minute insult...
had sent him running home.
Then I saw him.
Everybody saw him.
He had revealed
his most hidden secrets to us.
The circle was broken.
I could not hate the man
who could write such music.
I saw him one more time...
at his rooms
on Schwarzspanier Strasse.
That was where he died.
His belly swelled so much...
that the surgeon had to make a puncture
to drain off the fluid.
The incision became inflamed.
His strength has gone,
and I fear the death struggle has begun.
I want him to receive the last rites
while he is still conscious.
But when I suggested
I send for a priest...
he turned his face to the wall
and called me an ass.
Then he asked for you.
I don't know why.
Is he sleeping?
I don't think so.
He is composing.
The comedy is over.
I once loved him.
But he turned his back on me.
He abandoned me.
I never heard a word from him.
I was a fool.
I never meant anything to him.
But the letter...
What letter?
Frau Beethoven, I believe...
this is addressed to you.
"My angel...
my all...
my other self.
Just a few words today,
and that in pencil...
Only tomorrow will I know for certain
where I am to stay.
A worthless waste
of time and such.
Why this deep sorrow?
If we could be united,
we would feel this pain no longer.
Where I am...
you are with me too.
Soon we shall live together,
and what a life it will be".
- We must talk.
- Not here.
Caspar will come.
We must speak.
I'm talking too loudly.
Meet me in Karlsbad.
This is the address.
I can no longer skulk around
like a guilty schoolboy.
I have your child in me.
"The journey was dreadful.
I did not arrive here
until 4:00 in the morning.
At the last stop they warned me
against traveling at night...
and tried to frighten me
about a forest...
but that only tempted me.
The coach had to go and break down
on such a terrible road for no reason.
Just a country road...
and now I am held up completely.
But I have found another...
and we will surely
see one another soon.
Today, I hope.
I have to see you.
However much you love me...
I love you more.
Never hide yourself from me".
Herr van Beethoven!
"While still in my bed...
my thoughts turn to you...
my immortal beloved.
Some of them happy, some sad...
waiting to see
whether fate will hear us.
I can live only completely
with you or not at all.
Yes. It must be.
I must go to sleep now.
Be calm, love.
Today, yesterday...
what longing with tears for you.
You're my life.
My everything.
Farewell, then.
Go on loving me.
Ever yours, ever mine...