Cruel Peter (2019) Script

♪ Here is cruel Peter Hoffmann, see

♪ A horrid wicked boy was he

♪ He caught the flies Poor little things

♪ And then tore off their tiny wings

♪ And, oh! Far worse than all beside

♪ He killed the dog and now he'll die ♪

This girl is accusing you of cutting her face with a razor.

Is this true?

No, Mother.

She's a liar.

Did you hear what Peter said, Giovanni?

Yes, milady.

But that would... The girl is a liar. That'll be the end of it.

I want her off my property by this evening.

You know I love you, don't you?

I do.

Give me the razor, Peter.

No, Mother.

Please, do it for me.

My father gave it to me.

It's mine.

I see you found your dog in the end.

Inside a box. Underground.

It's your fault. You took too long.

The garden isn't so big.


Try it... peasant.

Lay one hand on me and my mother will cast your family out.

And you... will starve.

You're even more stupid than I thought.

Did you think I didn't recognize you?

I didn't know you were a poet, Alfredo.

"And Oh! Far worse than all beside.

"You killed the dog..."

And now you will die.

Let me out!

Let me out of here, you bastard.

I'll have you killed for this.

Your materials are here, Professor Nash.

From Froome? On my desk please. Yeah.

No, not yet.

Please tell me, why do you have this book?


I think I'm in for it with Liz.


Christ, no.

She thinks I'm a total idiot.

In reality I suspect it's something to do with her mother.

Do you think she feels guilty?



After she died, you stopped traveling, locked yourself away.

I hate to say it, but you're wasting your life.

Maybe Liz thinks it's... because of her.

What person's gonna give me a chance after messing up like that?

There's a restoration job going in Italy.

Quite interesting, not too demanding.


Town in Sicily.

There's even a school for Liz.

You've thought of everything, boss.

That way you can show the world what I already know.

That you can still run a site.

And this is the English cemetery.

Much of it destroyed by the earthquake.

Along with almost 90% of the estate's capitals.

Messina was one of the richest cities in Sicily.

And English ancestors did good business here.

It's probably not the most interesting place for a young girl.

Oh, when she was six years old, Liz was playing in the Catacombs of Paris amongst millions of skeletons.

She'll be fine.

The school is a two-minutes walk from the house.

You can go straight through the wood.

"I can walk myself."


We'll see.

Teenagers, no?

Tell me about it.


Norman. Norman.

Uh, you should come for lunch at my house sometime.

If you like.

My aunt is a great cook and she'd love to meet you.

Liz is a vegan.

It's a touchy subject.

That's no problem for Aunt Emma.


Yes. Thank you.

Grazie. Grazie.

"Here is cruel Peter Hoffmann.


"A horrid and wicked boy was he."

What did he say?

Um... These toys have been put there for a little boy.

That way, he can keep playing in the next life.

Help me.


♪ Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na

♪ Na, na, na, na, na, na, na

♪ Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na ♪

Help me!

Help me!

Are you all right?

You're scared.


What's your name?

There you are.


I'm Harriet. I live nearby.

I have to walk through these woods.

You're English.

Yes, Oxford.

I didn't think there were any English people left here.

Somebody remained.


My daughter can't hear, but she lip reads very well.

Her name is, uh... Liz, yes, as you said.


I'm Norman.

Pleased to meet you.

I hope to see you again.



This is Edgar Hoffmann.

He committed suicide in 1907, slitting his own throat.

Why did he do it?

Well, no one seems to know.

It was a big scandal at the time.

He was one of the wealthiest men on the island and Peter was his son.

Now, he disappeared on the 25th of December, 1908.

That's three days before the earthquake, and he was never found.

Hmm. Twelve years old at the time.

Quite the mystery.

They destroyed it.

Do these cameras work?

Ah, unfortunately, they don't.

Well, make them work.

Yes, sure.

Ho una cosa per lui.

A gift for you.

What is it?

It's a piece of material that has been bathed in holy water.

Inside it, there's an image of Christ.

She'd never admit it, but she has one too.

My auntie believes that the dead can either be good or evil.

This helps keep the evil ones away.

You used this?

Don't worry.

This... It's only a toy.

It's not a toy?

You heard Mum?


You couldn't.

It's impossible.

"What will it take for you to believe me?"



What's missing?

Uh, in this mess it's difficult to know.

Where is the metal box?

It was right here and now it's gone.

I'm sorry, Bianca.

Liz and I, we got off to a bad start this morning.

We can talk about it if you want.

Correva l'anno 1908...

I never asked you what brought you here.

I mean, for someone of your experience... it's a little low key.

I thought that was common knowledge.

Not for me.

Five years ago... my wife and I were working on a dig in Turkey.

During the excavation, we... uncovered this Roman sarcophagus.


Totally intact.

All I had to do was clean it up and it would have been perfect.

I could've waited till the next day.

But I was so excited that I... I couldn't leave it.

So I sent Jane home in her car... with Liz.

A truck... knocked her car off a bridge.

While I... was dusting the earth off piece of marble.

I lost her...

and Liz lost her hearing.

The day after the accident...


I returned to the site, I grabbed a pickax, and I smashed that sarcophagus into pieces.

Go away.

Go away.


"school finishes early."

Shall I pick you up?

I'm sorry about earlier.


I'm confused.

Please tell me, why?

I don't buy that.

Something is up.

I eat meat.

But with you there, never.


Can we talk about this together?

That's enough!

I'm your father.

And I don't want any cheeky talk from you.

I'm not the father of the year, but... I'm trying my best to connect with you and you're just driving me crazy.

Professor Nash.

Lieutenant Calarco, the Carabiniere.


We've been waiting for you.

We've had some tomb damage and a theft.

Oh. What did they steal?

A, uh, a metal box containing some toys and, uh, a wooden tombstone.

That is not much of a robbery.

Have you made any enemies here?


Whatever for?

Maybe you did something wrong?

I'm simply trying to protect this cemetery against vandals and decades of neglect.

This cemetery, not a colosseum.

No one cares about the dead.

Well, I do, for a start.

Professor, take my advice.

Go back to England.

How about you do your job...

I'll do mine.

I am.

I am.



What were you thinking?

The whole place is crumbling.

All the coffins are full of rusty nails.

Last week, Giuseppe hurt himself the same way.

It wasn't a nail.

This wasn't there before.

Sure you wouldn't like some?

I just wanted to apologize.

For what?

I'm a complete stranger and there I was chasing your daughter around the woods.

You could've got the wrong idea.

I didn't get any idea.

Well, I'm the one who should be reprimanded.

I was three hours late from picking her up at school.

She seemed to manage just fine.

With a father like me, she has to.

Don't be so hard on yourself.

We do what we can for our children.

Do you have kids?


It's getting late. I should get going.

I scared you.

I try to defend the villa... as I can.

Questo and de Padre Nicolo.

He lost his arm...

Nel terremoto.

In the earthquake.

And who's this?

His brother. Alfredo.

He was not so lucky.

What about Peter Hoffmann?

Your father must have told you something about him.

Well... my father said... in all his life... he never met anyone as mean as Peter.

He enjoyed hurting others, and he did it without fearing to be punished.

His mother always protected him.

She also did it when he killed his father.

Peter wanted his mother for himself.

She silenced what happened, claiming it was a suicide.

Everybody knew the truth in the villa, but they were too scared to talk.

One day, my uncle, tired of that cruelty, decided to make him pay.

Peter had to be stopped.

But Alfredo was not a murderer.

And my father convinced him to set him free.

Unfortunately... he chose the wrong day.

Corpses everywhere.

Tens and thousands of bodies were thrown into mass graves.


With death everywhere, no one cared about Peter and Alfredo's fate.




It was the 28th of December, 1908.

The city of Messina was completely destroyed.

Mrs. Hoffmann didn't accept the idea of losing this boy she loved more than anything.

And they were not only rumors.

That woman was a witch.

Back in the villa, my father saw her while she performed a ritual on the body of a housekeeper.

As soon as she was pulled from the rubble...


...that lifeless body spoke with Peter's voice.

Help me.

Help me.

On the same night, Mrs. Hoffmann disappeared in the woods and nobody saw her again.

People say she's still looking for Peter, and that she won't find peace until they're back together.

Let's try to finish classifying the monuments tomorrow.

I want to get back to London as soon as possible.

Why? It's Liz.

She's unwell, she needs help.

That's a bishop sphere.

Yes, it is.

It's a dangerous thing.

Why is it in this house?

Liz had it. She's been trying to contact her mother.

And what happened?



Her mother's dead! What do you think happened?

Liz should see Aunt Emma.

We already moved a month ago, so this is past normal.

By using that thing, Liz could have left a doorway open.

I'm just asking you to let her spend a day with my aunt.

You've met her. She's a good person.

She understands things that others do not.

And I will be there.

They are making a cake.

What did your aunt say?

She's just trying to get her to relax.

We'll see.

Norman? Yes?

I'd be sorry if you left. Me too.

But I have to look after Liz.



I'm gonna finish my rounds.

See you soon.


Zia! Zia!


Zia! Zia!

Zia! Zia!





It's a rite of purification.

Liz is possessed.

She had black magic marks on her body.

The marks of the witch.

Hello, sweetheart.

Help you?

Yes? You wanna go home?

No. No, don't do it. Norman, please.

That's enough. She's terrified.

We are going back to London, tomorrow.

Out of my way. Please. Please.

Out of my way. I beg you.

Tomorrow, you and I will go back home.

You will feel...

much better.

I'll get it.

Hi, Rod. Hi! Did you try to call me?

I did. I need to talk to you.

It's important.

What's that?



Liz, stay there.

Stay there, Liz.

Not Liz. Peter.

No. No!


Liz, hey...




Stay still.

I've to get back to the woods.

I have to find her. You'll never find the way.

Dark forces have been unleashed.

And they will keep you from it.

What am I supposed to do?

Just accept that I've lost my daughter?


There is a water tank at the back.

We have to find Peter's body and exorcise it.

But we must do it tonight.

Or she'll be lost forever. But it's impossible.

It could be anywhere.

Then we must ask someone who knows... and this time, you must believe.


Alfredo, I call out to you.


I call out to you.

Alfredo, are you there?

Hello, Peter.

I left you some air.

More than what you gave my dog.

I know where he is.

I know where he is, but he was trying to tell me something.

Who? Alfredo.

It's Peter's mother.

She's the one who took Liz through the woods.

She was here, in my house.

And my daughter said something about speaking to Jane.

She wasn't lying.

But it wasn't her mother she saw, it was Peter's mother.


Good evening, Norman.

I'm sorry to bother you so late, but I'm quite sure that I saw Liz. Where?

In the woods.

Can I come in?

No! Don't come in, witch!


We are safe in the house.

The witch cannot come in until somebody invites her.

Take the car and go to the cemetery.

Once there, you will be safe.

The witch cannot walk on consecrated ground.

And what about you?

Don't be afraid, honey. I'll be fine.

You know what to do.

Thank you, Emma. Now go.


Giuseppe, I want you to open the gates now.

Open it!

It is fucking locked.

It's all right, Bianca. It's all right. Don't worry.

Shit. Don't look. Don't...

It's all right.

Don't look at him!

Come on. Come on.


In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

In the name of the God...

Go away.

We believe in you and we pray thee, come be with those who love and learn to accept your will, as it is the blessed Virgin Mary.

Mother of Sorrows, at the foot of the cross.

The Queen of the Martyrs, through Christ, our Lord.

O divine light, urge the evil spirits to leave us forever and accept the light.

We believe in you and we pray thee...

We believe in you and we pray thee.

Come be with those who love and learn to accept you.

...Mother of Sorrows, at the foot of the cross.

We believe in you and we pray, my God...


Liz, wake up, darling.

Please, my love.

Wake up.


Why did you not listen to me, professor?

Why did you not leave?

What do you mean?

You can't kill the dead.

You drove her to him.

And now, they'll be together forever.

Lieutenant, what do you mean?



Help me.

Help me.