Irena's Vow (2023) Movie Script

[Birds chirping]
[Footsteps approaching]
[Man speaking Polish
on radio]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Man groaning]
That's all I could find.
They just announced
the Germans and Soviets
have signed a pact
dividing our land
between them!
Poland is no more!
Go tell the others.
[Man groaning]
- I will get the supplies.
- Thank you.
[Man]: Bobby!
[Indistinct chatter]
[Man shouting, indistinct]
[Gasping repeatedly]
[Men speaking German]
[Horse whinnying]
[Airplane flying overhead]
[Men and women speaking
foreign language]
[Irena]: Mama?
Excuse me sir but...
Why did you
come out of this house?
I live there.
Who are you?
I'm sorry they... they changed
all the names of the streets.
I... I must have
the wrong address.
[Men speaking
foreign language]
[Machinery whirring]
[Priest speaking, indistinct]
[Door opening]
[Priest]: Amen.
[Priest speaking Latin]
[Woman coughing]
[Bird calling,
wings flapping]
[Priest]: Amen.
Corpus Christi.
Corpus Christi.
[Door opening]
Corpus Christi.
[Soldier shouting in German]
[Soldier]: Raus!
Into the street!
All of you!
[Soldiers shouting
in German]
Attention, Poles!
From now on,
you'll be working to contribute
to the German war effort.
Work hard,
and no harm will come to you.
[Man whispering, indistinct]
Of course,
take whatever you want.
You, you.
You, you.
And you.
Into that truck over there.
You heard what
the Major said, move!
[Soldier shouting in German]
[Soldier shouting in German]
[Soldiers marching]
[Metal clanging]
[Breathing heavily,
metal clanging]
The commandant...
Irena, get back to work.
Now what seems
to be the problem?
If a worker faints,
it endangers the efficiency
of the entire plant.
I won't have that.
- [Foreman]: Yes, Herr Major...
Herr Major, please,
you can ask anyone.
I have been working here
for more than a year.
I'm a very good worker.
I am responsible for
a certain amount of production,
quotas, efficiency.
Do you even understand
those words?
If she can't keep up
with the work, get rid of her.
- Of course.
- Herr Major, please.
I swear on my mother's life
I was raised
to work hard and well.
I will...
double up my efforts.
What is your name?
Your name?
- Irena Gut.
Irena Gut.
You must be of German descent
with a name like Gut.
Your features... Ja.
Definitely Germanic.
I never knew my family
on my father's side.
I was simply called
Irena Gutowna.
Well, I admire your honesty.
I have nothing to hide.
I'm a very good worker.
You're not going back.
You're finished here.
No, Herr Major, please,
I will do any...
The work is
too difficult for you.
No, if you'll just let me...
How are you at kitchen work
and serving food?
Uh... yes,
even though we had servants,
my mother raised me
in all aspects of housework.
Food preparation?
- Yes, Herr Major!
Yes, Herr Major.
[Footsteps retreating,
metal clanging]
[Indistinct chatter]
How's your food?
You do very well, Irena,
efficient work.
Thank you, Herr Schulz.
I will see to the dishes now.
Leave them for a while,
you need something to eat.
Sit down.
Take your time,
chew your food.
No one's chasing you.
You remind me of my daughter.
The same age as you.
[Inhaling sharply]
Now, Irena...
in addition to your kitchen
and dining room duties,
you will be in charge of
supervising the Jews
who work in the laundry,
as well as being responsible
for all tailoring
for both the officers
and the female secretaries.
I suspect that
the Jews have lied
about their tailoring ability.
We'll expect to see
a marked improvement
in their performance.
Your survival in this new
position will depend on that.
Is that clear, Irena?
Yes, Herr Schulz.
These are difficult times
for all of us...
I used to be an innkeeper.
Now I work for the Major.
He used to be
a factory manager.
He can be harsh.
Do you know how one survives
this sort of change in destiny?
You look down.
You look neither to the left
nor to the right, nor up,
nor even straight ahead.
You look at your own two feet
taking one step at a time.
What I mean is...
you worry about you.
You take care of you.
You know only what you need
to know and the rest,
you will be like
one of the monkeys.
Hear nothing,
see nothing, speak nothing!
[Indistinct chatter]
[Sewing machines whirring]
My name is Irena Gut
and from now on,
I will be in charge here.
I'm sorry to say that
the officers and secretaries
are not happy with the tailoring
that's been done so far.
In fact, my superiors,
Herr Schulz and Major Rugemer
himself have suggested
that maybe you've been lying
about your tailoring abilities.
Oh no, Fraulein,
quite the contrary.
We were, you know,
before the war, expert tailors.
- Yeah.
- All of us.
Yeah, maybe we worked
a little bit...
I'm not here
to inform on anyone.
Our survival in these positions
will depend on
how well we do our new jobs.
I exaggerated to the Major
my tailoring abilities and...
I suspect some of you
may have done the same.
I was studying
to be a nurse.
I'm a nurse.
I was.
My name is Clara,
Clara Bauer.
I am Tomas Bauer,
her husband.
My wife, she was, she still is,
an excellent seam person.
One of the best.
Clara, tell the Fraulein
I'm not "the Fraulein."
I lost my home,
I've lost my family.
I'm a Polish girl
who is a forced labourer,
just like you.
Oh, with all due respect,
Miss Gut,
you're not "just like us".
We... we are Jews.
They have different things
in mind for us
than they have for you.
They've made... they've made
raids into the Ghetto.
We've heard all different
kinds of rumours.
Yes, Lazar, rumours!
But we all have jobs.
We're necessary workers,
as all of us have
a background in tailoring.
The girl is right.
We have to do good work
or we won't be
so necessary to them.
And as I said,
I'm a nurse,
and my husband Tomas
is an accountant.
I'm, uh, Moise
and this is my wife, Zosia.
We were just married.
I was in my last year
of medical school.
I'm Lazar, Lazar Haller.
this is my wife, Ida...
Not tailors either,
I'm afraid.
[Lazar]: Yeah.
Alex Rosen.
Even less of a tailor
than them.
Abram Klinger.
I'm a music teacher.
Joseph Weiss.
If you need a lawyer,
I can be of help.
Marian Wilner... chemist.
My name is Fanka Silberman.
I love to draw.
Oh, sh-she's very good.

[Footsteps retreating]
[Sewing machine whirring]
[Engine idling]
[Jazz on radio ]
What am I supposed
to do for workers, huh?
That I can just get
a whole new factory
full of inexperienced people
and, and meet my quotas?
Rugemer, it's because
you're my dear friend
that I'm telling you
all of this.
Don't rely on your Jews.
Find substitute workers, Poles,
like your servant here,
people like us.
But trained factory workers
are very difficult to find.
Within a few months,
I regret to say there won't be
any left in this area.
Get used to the thought,
Find replacements.
The potatoes...
are excellent.
My mother's recipe.
Your mother must be
a wonderful cook.
[Jazz on radio ]
[Woman shouting, indistinct]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Airplane flying overhead]
Why do you pass me by?
Major Rugemer complained that
the produce was wilted, so...
Mine comes straight
from the farm, Fraulein.
How much do you need?
For the Major,
for the Officer's mess
and secretaries, that's fifteen,
then eleven in the laundry.
Laundry workers?
You give
fresh produce to Jews?
You must be more careful
in what you say, Fraulein.
It isn't safe.
Do you understand?
[Man shouting in German]
Off the streets!
Off the streets right now!
[Soldier shouting in German]
get off the street.
Get off the street!
[Indistinct shouting]
Off the streets right now!
Get off the street!
[Woman sobbing]
Come on you Jew pigs!
She's just a baby! Please!
She's just a baby, please!
[Shouting indistinct]
Come on!
Keep them moving!
Sturmbannfuhrer Rokita.
[Woman sobbing]
- [Rokita]: What?
- She's just a baby, please.
You are afraid
the baby might be hurt?
- Yes, Your Honour.
- Ah.
Your Honour?
Very polite.
Very respectful.
[Baby crying]
Baby, may I?
Oyoyoy, little baby.
[Baby whining]
[Baby thudding]
[Woman wailing,
Irena breathing heavily]
[Gun clicking]
[Irena sobbing]
Keep them moving.
Come on!
[Breathing heavily]
Keep them moving!
[Breathing shakily]
Irena, bring...
[Whispering]: I have
seen things, Herr Schulz.
Terrible things,
horrible things.
Don't tell me.
I don't want to know.
And if you know
what's good for you,
you'll forget
everything you've seen.
Now pull yourself together
and go out there
and serve dessert.
But I...
But I... They...
[Sobbing, sniffling]
I don't want to know.
You're going to serve
dessert now, Irena.
Do you understand me?
You're going to serve dessert
and you're going to remember
what I told you
about your survival here.
Because sometimes,
survival means serving dessert.
[Soldiers speaking,
Well, if not for the roads,
this place would be barren.
Otherwise, it couldn't have
gone more smoothly today.
Kasekuchen, my favourite.
How did you know?
Next step, we'll hit
Mm-mmm! Really delicious!
Really Irena,
you're one to marry!
[Man shouting, indistinct]
[Rokita whistling ]
[Dog barking]
[Soldiers marching]
[Whistle blowing]
[Dogs barking]
[Whistling ]
[Pounding on door]
[Glass shattering]
No screams...
No one is screaming.
Sturmbannfuhrer Rokita,
there is no one there!
Give me that.
[Gun cocking]
[Machine gun firing]
Search everywhere!
Everywhere, do you hear me?
[Soldiers shouting,
I want every vacant building
sealed up hermetically!
I don't want a mouse to be able
to find a hiding place!
[Soldiers shouting,
[Dogs barking]
[Indistinct chatter]
It's not just end results,
But it's the technique,
the genius of it.
It's the application
of modern science
to a political
and social disease.
[Inhaling sharply]
I run factories, my friend.
I am not a philosopher.
This isn't philosophy.
It's good German engineering.
At first, nothing important,
you have to wear a star.
Who's going to fight
about a star, hmm?
Then you ban them
from public parks.
All right, inconvenient.
But no one's going
to start a rebellion
because they can't walk
their dog in the park.
Then you ban the dog.
Each time, the circle
constricts just a little more.
Each time,
you make them believe
that a piece of paper
can save them.
A piece of paper
that only you can give them.
Each time, they get that much
more used to standing in lines
and doing exactly
as they're told.
Use them for labourers,
by all means.
Get some good out of them.
Make them less resistant,
more pliable, more cooperative.
Until we use them up.
Until there's nothing left.
Until what's left is just
something you'd throw away.
Ah, bread!
[Inhaling deeply]
So warm!
Give me strong workers
to fulfill my quotas,
not worn out ones.
My factory needs
to be efficient.
You think you have quotas?
I assure you it's nothing
compared to the pressure
we in the S.S. are under.
I have until July 22nd
to make sure
that this entire sector
is Jew-free.
After that,
if there's a single living Jew
left in Tarnopol...
I can kiss
my promotion goodbye.
To kill everyone?
Everyone in the work camp?
The entire ghetto?
You think any of it
makes any sense?
They're madmen! Murderers!
Tomas is right.
Maybe they're just going to hit
one street or another but...
Rokita told the Major.
I heard him myself.
And this morning, he told me
he would be getting...
eleven replacements...
July 22nd.
you have to believe me.
Why would they replace us?
We are necessary workers!
What is necessary to them
is to get rid of all the Jews!
And when they finish,
they'll start killing Poles...
anyone they think
is not of the Master Race.
You have to find
a place to hide!
Irena, if we had
a place to hide,
we'd be hiding.
[Footsteps approaching]
[Rugemer]: I've been
waiting for you, Irena.
Where have you been?
I... I was in the laundry
to go over the work schedules...
You won't have to worry
about that from now on.
Your services won't be
required here any longer.
But why?
I... I think I've been
a good worker.
Enough! I'm not asking,
I am telling you!
I am going to be moving out
of these bachelor
officers quarters.
I expect to be doing
a good deal more entertaining
and I need something
more... sumptuous.
I have commandeered
a villa at the end of town
and I want you
to be my housekeeper.
You will have...
soldiers, painters
to do the heavy lifting
and cleaning.
You... will be in charge.
You can start to work
as soon as
the present tenants have left,
July 23rd,
and then you will
have 2 weeks
in which to get
the place in shape.
Yes, of course,
Herr Major.

[Footsteps approaching]
I saw a place
where I can hide you.
Where did you find
such a place?
Where no one would ever think
of looking for you.
In the house
of one of the highest ranking
German officers in Tarnopol.
[Marian]: What?
That's insane.
Why don't you just
hand us over to the Gestapo?
I have nothing else
to offer.
There is one problem, though.
There's a Polish family
who's renting the villa
from the authorities.
The Major is giving them
until the 23rd to move out.
And the German plan
to eliminate us
and every other Jew in Tarnopol
is on the 22nd...
[Irena]: Exactly.
So we have to find
a place to hide for this gap.
[Whispering]: Yeah...

[Metal clanking]
If you can think
of something better, tell me.
The Major is going out
to a theatrical performance
on the 21st.
While he's out,
I can get you in.
And how will you
get us out?
I have not thought
of that yet.
Don't you think you should?
I think if we thought
any of this through at all,
we wouldn't do it.
We would be out of our minds
to even consider such a thing.
[Engine idling]

[Door unlocking,
Irena gasping]
[Herr Schulz]: Irena?
[Herr Schulz]:
What are you doing here?
Herr Schulz, uh...
Well, I just want to turn down
the Major's bed and then...
Well, he probably showered,
so I should clean it
before he gets back.
It will be fresh
for the morning.
Where are the towels?
Uh, the towels,
Herr Schulz?
[Herr Schulz]: You should
lay out fresh towels as well.
Proper turn-down service.
Fresh towels.
Do you understand?
Yes, I will get
some right away.
[Footsteps retreating]
[Footsteps approaching]
[Irena]: Here.
[Exhaling sharply]
[Breathing heavily]
See you tomorrow night.
[Ida coughing]
[Ida coughing]
[Dogs barking]
[Soldiers speaking German]
[Soldiers speaking German,
dogs barking]
[Footsteps approaching]
Where are
your laundry workers?
My manifest shows me
that you have...
eleven Jews working
in your laundry.
Herr Lieutenant
asked you a question.
Where are the Jews
from the laundry?
I don't know.
They're not in the laundry,
I assure you, Lieutenant.
I locked the room myself.
They probably were rounded up
with the office workers
this morning.
In fact, I'm sure
they must have been.
If the Lieutenant wishes
to search the Laundry,
I have the key.
Of course, if you simply
sign off on the fact
that they were rounded up
with the others this morning,
you'll save us all
a lot of trouble.
But that's up to you.
On the other hand,
if you can't find them,
you might be the one
who will be held responsible.
I'm sure as you say...
they were rounded up
this morning.
Thank you.
[Footsteps retreating]
I don't want
to know anything.
Good luck in
your new position, Irena.
And good-bye.
[Footsteps retreating]
[Gunshots in distance]
[Gunshots in distance]
Will you be going out
again this evening, Major?
there's no place
to go tonight.
[Rugemer]: No place
to get away from the noise.
I'm going to go
to bed early.
I overdid it a bit last night,
I'm afraid.
[Gunshots in distance]
[Woman singing
in German on radio ]
[Rugemer snoring]
Take off your shoes.
[Ida coughing]
[Woman singing
in German on radio ]
[Ida coughing]
[Window closing]
[Wood creaking]
[Crickets chirping]
[Irena]: Here, help me.
No noise, no lights.
[Breathing heavily]
[Birds chirping]
[Indistinct chatter]
And the windows.
Uh, careful with the corners.
[Indistinct chatter]
[Birds chirping]
I will go get something nice
and cold for you to drink,
and some food.
OK, let's go!
So, after lunch,
we start cleaning the attic?
No, the cellar, first.
[Indistinct chatter]
I would like you to install
an electric light, please,
with one switch in my room,
one in the kitchen
and one down here.
If I have to go
down here in the dark,
I don't want
to break my ankle.
Good night, Fraulein Gut.
Tomorrow the attic, yes?
Yes, perfect!
at least it doesn't look
like a pig sty anymore.
Thank you, Herr Major.
At any rate,
it's going to be so much easier
for you from here on out.
I'm going to move
an orderly in to help you
with the heavy work,
a soldier.
[Inhaling sharply]
He'll be at your command
and he can sleep in the cellar.
But you can't! Uh...
I can't?
I can't what?
What are you talking about?
Sir, I... I know I have
nothing to fear from you.
You are a cultured
and a mature man but...
I had a bad experience
with soldiers...
Soviet soldiers and...
Under the same roof
with a soldier,
I would be terrified
the whole time.
Don't be an idiot.
There's far too much work
for one person.
I'm having many people for
dinner the first party alone.
You can't possibly do
all the work for them!
But I can, you will see!
I know how to run
an efficient kitchen.
And an orderly would
only be in the way.
I'll give you one chance
and one chance only.
But if you can't keep up
at this party,
the next day,
my orderly moves in.
[Man and woman
speaking German]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Classical on radio ]
[Man]: Danke shoen.
You want some caviar?
It's very good.
Thank you, Irena.
Are you enjoying the party?
I will get some more.
[Keys clanging]
[Door unlocking]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Door locking]
My guests are getting
a little impatient, Fraulein.
We must be sitting down
for dinner soon, ja?
Yes, Herr Major.
- [Man]: Rugemer!
- Ah!
[Indistinct chatter]
One second, one second...
Yeah, OK!
Go! Go, go, go!

[Guests speaking German]
[Rugemer]: Good! OK!
[Glass clinking]
Bon apptit!
[Indistinct chatter]
[Rugemer]: Enjoy!
Oh, listen, it's a strudel.
It's ready to cook,
20 minutes in the oven.
- [Irena]: OK!
- My grandmother's recipe!
Ah, here we are!
Irena, the strudel!
- Coffee, Herr Major?
- Yeah, please, thank you.
[Indistinct chatter]
Well, thank you again,
lovely party!
And the strudel was divine.
Thank you. I'm glad
you enjoyed yourselves.
- Good night.
- Good night.
I'm almost done,
Herr Major.
I swear... you've done
the work of six people.
Thank you.
Are you...
Are you like Cinderella,
then, hmm?
With an army of mice
that are your secret footmen
and scullery maids?
- No, sir...
I'm just aware that
in order to keep this position,
I must prove to you
my efficiency in the kitchen.
your service tonight
has been satisfactory, Irena.
Efficient and satisfactory.
So, for the time being,
we can do without an orderly.
Good night.
- Good night.
indistinct chatter]
We did it!
[Sighing, chuckling]
Now have some water.
Irena? Open up!
No need to lock up
every time.
[Man singing folk
in German on radio ]
[Inhaling deeply]
[Metal tapping]
[Whispering]: Thank you.
I only found this.
[Metal tapping]
[Footsteps approaching]
[Light switch clicking]
[Footsteps continue]
[Keys clanging]
[Wood creaking]
[Footsteps approaching]
Why didn't you tell me
about our guests in the cellar?
And don't pretend
as if you didn't know.
- Uh, know what, sir?
- I want them exterminated.
Major I have no idea...
I don't want
a trace of them down there!
- But I honestly...
- The rats!
The rats?
Filthy, disgusting,
disease-ridden rats!
And don't you tell me
that you haven't heard them!
Your room is right above them
in the cellar
and I've heard them,
I can assure you.
You should have...
you should have seen to them
when you cleaned the place!
You're right. I... I've been
meaning to say something.
I can't tolerate
even the thought of them!
They have to be gotten rid of,
the sooner the better.
Top to bottom.
Yes, that is exactly
what should be done.
But you must give me some time,
please, Herr Major.
Time? Time for what?
Well, there are vegetables,
which have been
so hard to come by.
You know how you demand
fresh vegetables.
They are hard
to find these days.
Simply give me
the time to have it moved.
Just... kill... the rats!
Do you understand?
Kill... those rats!
- Yes, Herr Major.
This time, I don't know.
[Joseph sighing]
- Maybe...
- Maybe what, Abram?
Maybe things aren't
as grave as they seem.
I'm glad you think so.
And when
the exterminators come?
What I mean is...
it was a Jewish house.
[Lazar]: Hmm?
It was built by Jews.
So, there must be
a hiding place!
- [Fanka]: That's right!
- Yeah.
No Jew would have built a villa
like this without a room,
big enough to hide
his entire family!
- There has to be one here.
- [Man]: Yeah.
[Metal clanging]
[Knocking on wall]
I found it!
[Ida]: Abram, can you
see where it leads?
Not yet!
[Ida]: Abram,
are you all right?
Could he have
come out on the street?
Could the Germans
have seen him?
[Abram]: Rats!
That's all you found?
[Abram]: No.
[Metal scraping brick]
We are in the gardens, somewhere.
We're next to the gazebo.
It's perfect.
Not just till they finish
but we can be safe here.
- Yeah.
- It's a real hiding place.
Irena, if you can get us
some electrical wire,
I can rig up an alarm bell.
There are some spare
mattresses in the cellar.
We can bring those here.
- Yeah.
- And soap and water.
Maybe some newspapers
so we can read something
of what is happening outside.
- Maybe some books.
- Oh, yeah, books.
I miss books so much!
We can make a chess set.
Perhaps we could get
a deck of cards.
Chess? Cards?
This is not a resort hotel.
A hotel?
We live in a coal bin,
completely cut off
and scared to death
about what could be happening
to our families on the outside.
So if Tomas asks for some
chess set or maybe a book,
suddenly for you,
that's a resort?
We had things...
Tomas and I!
We had a house
as beautiful as this villa!
And china and drapes
and parties!
Well I could bring
the papers down
after the Major's done
with them and...
I... I can get
a deck of cards,
I'm sorry,
I didn't think...
No, you... you have nothing
to be sorry about.
Without you,
we'd all be dead.
- He's right.
- Yeah.
- Thank you.
- Thank you.
[Bird calling]
[Engine starting]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Alex]: Oh, you're always
the lucky one!
indistinct chatter]
It's fantastic!
[Lazar]: Welcome, Irena,
to our humble home!
What's that? Storage?
We've christened it
the honeymoon suite.
There are 3 married couples
here so, you know...
We only have water,
but... the occasion
calls for something.
- [Alex]: Here you are.
- Thank you.
- [Lazar]: So...
indistinct chatter]
Guys, L'Chaim!
[All]: L'Chaim!
- [Irena]: To life.
- Yeah.
[All]: L'Chaim!
[Bell ringing]
You're the lady
from the square,
the... the vegetable seller.
- Yes, from the market.
Oh, well, we have
all the vegetables we need,
and I'm expecting
the fumigators anyway
so I have no place
to store them.
I understand.
[Basket rustling]
I've been watching
your house.
You're hiding Jews here.
That is a filthy lie!
I... I work for a very important
German officer...
My husband is a Jew.
I've been hiding him myself,
but it's only a matter of time
before he's found.
Please, you've got
to take him in.
Henry Weinbaum?
My God... he worked for...
He worked for Rokita himself!
He was his butler
after he had to leave
his profession as a printer.
Couldn't work as a printer.
That's why Rokita has been
looking for him like a madman.
He takes it
as kind of an insult
that his personal Jew
has been able to escape.
Well, wonderful.
We'll bring the most wanted Jew
in Poland down here.
I say it's out
of the question.
[Lazar]: I agree.
I know it's a tragedy,
but we cannot hide every
single Jew in the cellar.
Henry Weinbaum...
already knows we are here.
So they catch him,
don't you think they will ask
what other Jews
are in hiding and where?
And don't you think Rokita
would make it his own business
to get every bit
of information out of him?
[Breathing heavily]
Henry Weinbaum.
[Engine starting]
[Door locking]
[Piano ]
Abram found the piano.
Beautiful music.
[Vehicle approaching]
- [Ida]: What was that?
- [Irena]: Someone's coming!
Into the hiding place!
What is it?
I don't know!
[Truck approaching]
Go! Go! Go!
[Switch clicking]
[Bell ringing]
Open it now
or I'll break the door down!
[Door opening]
Why the hell
don't you open this door
when an S.S. Officer
tells you to, are you deaf?
Sorry, I was washing my hair,
didn't hear you ring.
Out of my way.
How many people live
in this house?
- Uh, just two.
- Hmm.
I'm the housekeeper.
Quite a lot of dishes
for just 2 people,
wouldn't you say, Fraulein?
The Major had a small
gathering here last night
with Sturmbannfuhrer Rokita.
The Major?
Major Edward Rugemer.
This is his house.
If you wish to search,
you might need to get
permission from him.
No one leaves this house,
you understand?
No one!
[Footsteps approaching]
[Soldiers speaking German]
[Vehicle approaching]
Who is the imbecilic moron
who is in charge here?
Is it you?
Stand at attention when
a superior officer talks to you,
you insolent young swine!
You dare to accuse me
of hiding Jews in my house?
Answer me!
Obviously Major,
we were... misinformed.
This is Fraulein Gut,
my housekeeper
and trusted assistant.
She will show you around.
Search thoroughly.
If you find any Jews,
come back "pew" shoot me.
If you don't find any,
then we will see
who's to be shot.
Please sir,
a search won't be necessary.
It is very necessary.
My honour is at stake!
Get out of my sight
and go find your Jews!
Shall we begin
in the attic?
[Woman singing folk
in German on radio ]
[Rugemer humming ]
[Exhaling slowly]
[Humming ]
[Door closing,
engine starting]
[Door locking]
[Inhaling deeply]
Ida is pregnant.
That's wonderful!
I told you she
would react like this.
Here is the list
of the things I'm going to need.
You just go
to the pharmacist's...
There's plenty of time
to get medical supplies.
Irena, these are the things
I'm going to need
to perform an abortion.
Clara will assist me.
Irena we, uh, we can't
bring a baby into... into this.
It would be endangering
all of our lives.
Yours too.
It would be only a matter
of time before the Major
or somebody else
heard the crying.
Listen, we... we've all
talked it over.
It's the only thing to do.
I can't. I... I...
This is absurd.
And my religion...
This is not
a matter of religion.
This is life and death.
I can't.
I can't do this.
- You don't have to do this.
I'm going to.
I just need you to get
the supplies I requested.
everyone's talking but you.
Everyone seems
to have an opinion.
But what about you?
Do you want to have this baby?
Yes, of course.
But not now.
Not in these conditions.
It will be too dangerous
for all of us.
You're right.
This is not just
a matter of religion.
I saw a baby...
ripped out of its mother's arms
and killed in front of me,
and... I could do nothing.
I made a vow then that if I
ever could save a life, I would.
That's why without even thinking
I took you here to hide you.
It's not enough to just...
save a life...
to simply survive.
We have to live.
Otherwise, the Hitlers
of the world have won.
Ida, if there was no Hitler,
no... no camps, no S.S.,
no Major Rugemer...
would you have this baby?
Then I'm not going to help
Hitler get another Jewish baby.
He won't get rid of you...
of us.
I think we should have faith.
Because if we don't,
something else will die
inside of us too.
But if anything goes wrong,
we all pay the price.
Everything has
already gone wrong,
and we're still here.
[Tableware clattering]
When I was
a little girl, I...
I used to hate it
when my mother made me
help her with the dishes.
I never thought
I could look forward to it...
but I never thought
I would be living in a cellar.
[Bell ringing]
Go! Go, go, go!
"You Jew-loving whore.
"I know you're hiding Jews
in this house.
"I give you until tonight,
seven o'clock,
"to bring 60,000 zlotys
in a bag.
"Bring it to the train station
and leave it on the bench
"next to the clock.
"Do not tell anyone,
don't look back.
"I'll be watching you,
ready to shoot you down.
If you don't comply,
the Gestapo will get you all."
Where can we get
that kind of money?
And even if we pay,
what stops him
from demanding more?
Whoever it is
doesn't know for sure.
Maybe they're only guessing.
In which case, if we pay,
we've told him
he guessed right.
Yeah, but if we don't pay,
he will go to the Gestapo.
And this time,
they will do a real search.
Oh, stop the nonsense.
We don't have the money.
Irena's done enough for us.
Maybe we should
just wait until dark and...
[Irena]: No,
that's out of the question.
Besides, he may
be watching our house.
There might be
an elegant way out of this.
Irena, show the note
to the Major.
- Are you out of your mind?
- [Marian]: What?
That's ridiculous!
May I, please.
What would happen
if we simply tore off,
"You Jew-loving whore," hmm?
So that anyone
reading this cannot tell
it was addressed to a woman.
[Lazar]: Uh...
One will think
it was left for the Major.
[Lazar]: That's clever.
[Rugemer in German]:
Someone... someone
is trying to ruin me.
I will kill them!
This swine thinks he can
accuse me of harbouring Jews?
Irena, you know
every inch of this house.
You know it would be impossible
for me to be hiding any Jews!
Of course not Herr Major.
Rokita? I...
[Rokita on phone,
I'm being blackmailed.
This is a matter for the Gestapo
and I ask your assurances
that you will
move immediately.
I received a letter here
demanding I pay 60,000 zlotys
tonight or this... this scammer
will tell the Gestapo
that I've been hiding Jews
in my house!
In my house!
[Rokita on phone,
You've been here many times.
The next thing you know,
they'll say that
you are an accomplice!
breathing heavily]
[Rokita on phone,
Maybe you're right.
there's something
I need you to do for me.
[Soldiers speaking German]
[Train whistling in distance]
[Bell tolling]
[Irena gasping,
man mumbling indistinctly]
[Train whistling]
[Rokita blowing whistle]
[Men shouting in German]
[Punches, kicks landing]
[Irena breathing shakily]
[Train passing on tracks]
Calm down, Irena.
Here... drink this.
[Telephone ringing]
[Irena sighing]
She did what?
Ah, well, you know...
Thank you, my friend.
Good night.
That was Rokita.
He said you let out quite
a scream in the waiting room
when some poor old man
bumped you.
He said you could
never make a spy.
They have the blackmailer
in the Gestapo's hands now.
Did you see him?
Why? Will I have
to identify him?
I don't think so.
They shot him.
You did well tonight.
You can take the day off.
I can see
to my own breakfast.
Thank you.
Oh, and if you see
any Jews in the cellar,
give them my regards.
[Indistinct chatter]
[Airplane flying overhead,
[Men and women shouting,
[Airplane flying overhead]
[Airplanes flying,
explosions in distance]
[Explosions in distance]
[Classical ]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Man]: Danke!
[Men and women
speaking German]
Yeah, I know!
Well, I'm glad that you have
finally accepted some help.
You were right.
Thank you for hiring
Herr Schulz.

[Rugemer]: Excuse me
one moment, please.
[Crickets chirping,
indistinct chatter]
[Speaking German]
[Ida coughing]
[Lazar whispering]:
Maybe try with this.
It's so damp in here.
Impossible to get rid
of her asthma.
[Sighing, sniffling]
The baby's moving!
[Classical ]
[Indistinct chatter]
We have overextended
on the Eastern front.
It's a classic mistake,
but they won't listen
to us in Berlin.
Oh, no.
And meanwhile, the Soviets...
they are advancing every day!
No, my dear Major,
Berlin knows best.
At least, that's what
they keep telling me.
[Indistinct chatter]
[Folk on radio ]
[Schulz]: Hmm!
It's good
to see you here, Schulz.
My life has been
boring since you left.
Are the guests
enjoying the food?
Ah well, the guests who
are interested in the food,
are, of course,
enjoying the food.
[Alcohol splashing]
But that Rokita!
He had his hand
up his secretary's skirt
under the table
the entire dinner.
- The man is a pig.
- Mmm!
He couldn't wait
the end of the evening.
He brought her in the gazebo.
Could you serve
the coffee, please?
- Is anything wrong?
- No!
No, not at all.
[Folk on radio ]
Not again.
Not again this one.
[Man]: Yeah, come on!
What's that?
[Man and woman speaking,
Quiet, quiet, quiet.
[Ida moaning,
Abram shushing]
[Ida breathing heavily]
[Woman laughing]
St-stomach cramp again.
[Man sighing]
[Ida breathing heavily]
You're having contractions.
[Woman laughing,
Ida groaning]
She's not due yet.
[Ida moaning]
Just... breathe.
Breathe slowly.
[Woman laughing]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Inhaling deeply,
exhaling slowly]
[Man]: Come on.
[Ida moaning]
[Man moaning]
[Woman]: Someone's coming!
- What?
- Someone's coming!
Sturmbannfuhrer Rokita?
[Rokita groaning,
woman giggling]
I brought you
schnapps and strudel.
My Major said you must try...
Thank you, Irena.
I don't need anything.
Oh dear, I think we should go
back inside, don't you think?
- Yes.
- Oh! Don't worry about it.
I'll pick it up.
- Careful the step!
[Woman]: Thank you!
[Rokita]: Let's go get
a glass of champagne.
We'll resume later.
[Breathing heavily]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Bell ringing]
[Indistinct chatter]
[Soldier shouting in German]
[Soldier]: Everyone
into the town square.
[Soldier in German]:
- What is this all about?
- Keep going!
I am Major Rugemer's
Here, you can
examine my papers.
No exceptions! Move along!
[Man speaking
foreign language]
[Soldier in German]:
[Indistinct shouting, chatter]
Attention, attention!
You have been brought here
today to witness...
This is what happens to Aryans
who try to shelter Jew pigs!
Europe is going
to be Jew-free.
And it is going to be free
of Jew lovers as well.
Because this is
what will happen to them...
and their precious Jews!
Music please.
[Tango on radio ]
[Rokita clears throat]
[Rokita whistling ]
[Grunting, screaming]
[Crowd murmuring]
[Irena sobbing]

[Rope squeaking]
[Rokita whistling ]
[Breathing heavily]
[Zosia]: Good morning!
[Clara]: Irena,
how can we help today?
Is everything all right?
You look terrible.
N-no, I'm all right.
Can we help you
with anything?
You look as if
you'd seen a ghost.
[Door opening,
footsteps approaching]
[Door closing]
[Breathing shakily]
What have you done?
I trusted you!
For all we know,
they could be watching
the house right now!
You've killed us both.
You've killed us both!
- Herr Major...
- Get rid of them now!
[Breathing shakily]
[Whispering]: Go down
to the hiding place.
What are you going to do?
I don't know.
[Bottle clanging]
Herr Major...
- How could you?
You are a good man.
I know you are.
All along they were
in my house.
Three Jews in my house!
[Sniffling, sighing]
This is what the blackmailer's
letter was about, huh?
And when Rokita was here,
you were laughing at me.
You and the Jews
were laughing at me.
No, they are 3 innocent women,
3 women who are my friends.
They're Jews!
They're Jews!
They're the enemy!
No they're not, Herr Major.
They're not anyone's enemy!
But if you think the punishment
for this should be death,
then... kill me.
Kill me or turn me in.
But let them go.
Please, take me
to the Gestapo.
I will confess, but give them
a chance to escape.
Please, I-I beg you,
Herr Major.
[Bottle clanging]
Do you think that they will
believe that I didn't know
there was 3 Jews
hiding in my house!
Do you?
Rokita will have me killed,
just to save his own skin!
You have killed us both,
You have killed us both!
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners...
Shut up. and at the hour
of our death.
Shut up, I said shut up!
- Blessed art thou among women...
- Shut up!
[Irena sobbing]
[Rugemer sniffling]
you have.
[Breathing shakily]
gun clanging on desk]
I'm old...
and tired...
of the killing.
of all of it.
Of all of it.
Turn you in?
[Inhaling deeply]
[Exhaling slowly]
There may be a way.
There may be a way...
that I can keep your secret.
If I...
if I thought that you...
you loved me...
wanted me, a man...
a man could do that for a woman
who he knew loved him...
wanted him.
It would have to be...
It would have to be
that I thought
that you loved me, Irena...
and if... I thought
that you wanted me too...
- Herr Major...
- Irena...
Irena, I...
[Irena sniffling]
I will help you.
I will help keep
your secret, Irena.
Our secret.
[Sniffling] love...
[Irena sobbing]
[Birds chirping]
Tell me about your family.
[Irena]: Why?
Because I'm interested,
I... I want to know who you are.
What does it matter
who we are?
What we do is who we are.
My father is a chemist
and architect and...
my mother took care of
my 4 younger sisters and I.
My mother is warm and...
full of energy.
That makes me think
of someone next to me.
Our house was taken away.
I just hope
they're still alive.
War is filthy.
Animals behave
better than humans.
My mother was...
but with a heart of gold.
If she could see me...
my life...
she would scream of shame.
You look so ravishing,
my love.
[Door closing]
[Engine starting]
[Indistinct chatter]
Mama! What are you doing?
I'm so sorry, Fraulein!
- Fraulein?
She's a Polish whore!
You don't even deserve
to be called a Pole.
Sleeping with
this German officer!
Quiet, Mama!
[Whispering]: Quiet!
Please, I beg you.
She's old. She's senile.
She doesn't know
what she's saying.
You want to sell to a whore,
sell to a whore.
I don't want any trouble.
Give me 2 dozen eggs and
4 kilos of potatoes, please.
[Pan clanging]
[Indistinct chatter]
From what I read,
the Germans are
losing some grounds.
Of course, they won't say it
blankly in the paper,
but if you read
between the lines...
"The Polish resistance
is gaining ground,
"making it more challenging
for Hitler's army.
"They are accustomed
"to the Russian's strong
offensive style.
They shall soon discover
AK's strategic... manoeuvres."
So there is hope!
The Soviet army
may be strong for now,
but our troops
will continue to fight.
Right, my dear?
- Yeah.
There are rumours
that the Polish Partisans
are multiplying in the area.
Would you care for an
hors d'oeuvre, Herr Hauptmann?
I'm surprised the old man
still keeps up the pretence
of having her serve.
She serves in the bedroom,
why not here?
Well I think
it's disgusting,
the way he chases
after his Polish pig.
Oh, shut up.
You're just jealous because
she's better looking than you.
[Indistinct chatter]
They gobbled up
the hors d'oeuvres already?
Yes, Herr Schulz...
they are so good!
Would you mind if I took
some to my quarters...
just for a snack
in case I get hungry later on?
Just for a snack?
you never can tell
how hungry you can become
in the middle of the night.
And I've brought
some extra blankets as well.
I wouldn't want you
or the Major to be too cold.
No, no!
Don't tell me.
I don't want
to know anything.
Herr Schulz, I...
I hope that one day,
I will be able to meet
your wife and daughter and...
tell them what
a truly fine person you are.
One day, yeah, maybe...
[Inhaling deeply] day.
[Singing in German ]
O Tannenbaum
O Tannenbaum
Wie treu sind
deine Blatter
O Tannenbaum
O Tannenbaum
Wie treu sind
deine Blatter
Du grunst nicht
nur zur Sommerzeit
Nein auch im Winter
wenn es schneit
O Tannenbaum
O Tannenbaum
Wie treu sind
deine Blatter
[Singing prayer in Hebrew ]
Asher kidishanu
ba mitzvah tov
Le hadlick ner
Shel Hanukah
Baruch atoh adonai
Eleinu melech ha olam
She asah nisim la voseinu
Bayamim ha hem
Bazman hazeh
I should go
before I am missed.
Merry Christmas.
[Jazz on radio ]

[Ida]: Hanukah's desserts
are the best.
[Abram humming ]
This is delicious.
[Indistinct chatter]
[Abram humming ]
[Singing in Hebrew ]
Shalom aleichem
Mal'achei hasharet
Mal'achei elyon
Mimelech mal'achei
Hakadosh baruch Hu
Bo'achem leshalom
Mal'achei hashalom
Mal'achei elyon
Mimelech mal'achei
Hakadosh baruch Hu
[Alex]: Hmm...
someone has complained
to headquarters in Berlin.
This probably all started
with that vicious
blackmailer rumour.
You repeat a lie
often enough, you know...
In any case, in Berlin,
they say that I have become
enamoured of a Polish girl.
And because...
because of that,
my leadership
has... deteriorated.
Why me, huh?
Why me?
I had a distinguished career.
And now...
now it's gone!
It's you.
It's your fault!
Your fault.
Irena, it's...
it's all falling apart.
All of it.
It's amazing,
amazing how fast it crumbles.
It was supposed to last
a thousand years.
It won't even last
until Easter.
[Inhaling deeply]
I have to leave soon
to set up new headquarters
for the final defence
of the Fatherland.
When I go, you must take
your Jews into the forest.
Yes, I know.
[Sniffling, sighing]
And then you will come
and join me, yes?
Yes, of course.
Yes, of course.
Shall I tell you
something funny?
I thank God for your Jews.
I thank God for them
every day.
Because without them...
without them,
I would never had known
this time with you.
Is the baby born?
Not yet.
So, I will see you
in a few days, yes?
Yes, in a few days.
[Footsteps retreating,
door opening]
[Door closing]
[Footsteps retreating]
[Door closing,
engine starting]
[Mariam]: Mm-mmm!
[Irena]: Hmm?
- Mm-mmm!
What do you think?
A little shorter on the sleeves
and it's perfect.
You're a real tailor
after all.
Congratulations, Henry!
OK. And now...
for you...
[Crickets chirping]
[Doors closing]
One more trip
and we're done.
[Ida coughing,
engine starting]
[Ida coughing, moaning]
That checkpoint
wasn't there before.
Well, it's there now.
[Ida coughing]
Can't you do something?
[Lazar]: We're trying.
I don't know what else to do.
[Breathing heavily]
The ba... the baby is
push... pushing into my stomach.
Laugh, laugh hysterically.
But laugh!
Do what he said, laugh!
Hey, soldier,
for you and your friend.
Enjoy the evening!
And pick up your rifle!
- [Soldier]: Yes!
- Go!
[Irena laughing]
[Speaking German]
[Vehicle approaching]
- Henry!
- Helen!
- You are Irena?
- Yes
Irena Gut.
[Whispering] Zosia, Clara,
Tomas, Marian, Joseph,
Abram... Alex.
We have to move.
We won't be safe
here for long.
I just wanted to make sure
they're all here.
We're all here, Irena.
- I hope to see you soon.
- Me too.
- Thank you!
- Ida!
Lazar, take care
of your family.
I will.
We're safe now. To life!
- L'chaim!
- L'chaim!
- Thank you.
- Zosia...
We won't forget you, Irena.
- Hey.
- Thank you!
Thank you.
- Irena.
- Clara, my friend.
Oh, thank God!
- Good, you are talking to God.
If there's anything
I can do to help you,
let me know.
Yes, we will be calling
on you very soon.
Stay safe.
[Speaking foreign language]

[Men speaking
foreign language]
[Whispering, indistinct]
[Speaking foreign language]
[Man shouting
in foreign language]
[Chickens clucking,
birds calling]
[Footsteps approaching]
[Henry]: One day,
you made a vow before us.
Today, we give you
back the same.
Here's your passport.
Thank you.
"Sofie Soferstein."
You are now a Jewish woman.
You will be repatriated
out of Poland to a refugee camp,
where you will be free.

This is my baby!