Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959) Script

Congratulations. We're so pleased.

A wonderful article in the paper about you, Sir Oliver. It's wonderful, sir! Wonderful!

Good morning, Professor, or I should say Sir Oliver.

Long article about you. Is there? Well, well, well.

I think they made a mistake about your age.

Paper! Paper!

Paper! Paper!

Paper!

It's such an honor for Edinburgh, Sir Oliver. I cannot take your money.

Thank you. Paper! Paper!

Congratulations, Professor.


# Here's to the prof of geology

# Master of all natural history

# Rare boy he, and rare boys we

# To know such a big curiosity

# To the braw, aye, aye, aye, aye

# To the bricht, aye, aye, aye, aye

# To the knicht, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye

# Aye I'm sorry.

Sir Oliver, since you have been created a knight, I've given your students a holiday - a day for a knight, so to speak.

First, however, there's to be a presentation. Will the Laird of Glendarach step forward?

Sir Oliver.

In the name of the student body, in gratitude for the knowledge you have imparted to us...

That's enough obituary prose.

An inkwell, I presume.

A very handsome thing.

Hellish to dust.

I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

And now off to the playing fields, all of you!


Ah.

It cost £4.17. I was on the committee that made the collection.

I thank you for your efforts, McEwen. £5 was subscribed. That left three shillings.

You're not going to give me the change, are you?

I expended it on this. A little extra token I thought you might fancy.

I saw it during Easter week in a little window in Glasgow, a curiosity shop.

It seemed to whisper to me. "Buy me for Professor Lindenbrook."

What did you reply?

I said "Only if you can be bought for three shillings."

I argued with the owner all Good Friday. It's lava, of course.

But exceptionally heavy. Could serve as a paperweight.

Do you like it, Professor? It's a scholar's choice.

What are you eating tonight?

This being Tuesday, I'm not eating.

I find it very healthy to eat only every other night.

Be at my house at eight o'clock. I'm entertaining some of the faculty.

I do not think I could. What's the matter with you?

You used to come to my house regularly. Is it those frayed cuffs that worry you?

I won't get my other shirt from the wash till Friday.

Eight o'clock sharp. We're scientists, aren't we?

That's one society where frayed cuffs don't matter. We've all had 'em.

Yes, Sir Oliver. Eight o'clock.

Lava.

I swear there's something inside.


There's Uncle now, Kirsty. And high time too!

I thought it was Uncle Oliver.

I want it understood that not a single stitch I'm wearing belongs to me.

Good evening, Miss Jenny. Good evening, Alec McEwen.

I'm early, but I trust I'm not too early. I didn't know you were coming.

Well, your uncle - I should say Sir Oliver - ordered me to come.

Where is he? He's never been late like this - never.

I don't know, but, to return to the subject of my clothes, they're my classmate's, the young Laird of Glendarach.

"You can't go to dinner dressed like that" said the young laird.

"The professor knows my wardrobe" I replied, and went to take my bath.

When I returned, my clothes had been confiscated and these substituted.

I want to make it clear I have no claim to the Glendarach tartan.

You've explained your magnificence.

Kirsty!

There will be one more guest.

I'll seat you between the dean and the rector. Couldn't I sit next to you?

Certainly not.

Pardon my being personal, but I notice a certain harshness in your attitude toward me.

What do you expect when it takes a command from my uncle to bring you to this house?

Miss Jenny, why should I torture myself to no purpose?

Two years more I have to study for my master's degree.

Then four years more as a laboratory assistant.

There's the money I owe my relatives. They're paying for my schooling.

You are very logical, Mr McEwen.

It's the logic of an empty purse. How like a Scotsman.

I am a Scotsman.

I know one whose purse was not empty, because he didn't even have a purse.

His name was Robert Burns. Do you know what he said?

Miss Jenny, the time of poetry is over.

If this is true, Alec McEwen, what are you doing with your hand on my knee?

Miss Jenny.

Now you just wait in there.

Kirsty, I'll set the extra place.

Is there something you want?

A key is stuck. But that's impossible.

It was just tuned last month.

Which one?

This one. Can't you see? No, I can't.

At least you can see how unhappy I am.

You know how I've felt since that day you entered the classroom and brought your uncle the galoshes he forgot.

You looked like spring itself.

# My love is like a red, red rose

# That's newly sprung in June

# My love is like the melody

# That's sweetly played in tune I thought you were setting the table.

There's a key stuck. Mr McEwen is fixing it.

#... my bonny lass

# So deep in love am I

# That I will love you still, my dear

# Till all the seas go dry

# Till all the seas go dry, my love

# And rocks melt with the sun

# And I will love you still, my dear

# While the sands of life shall run

# So fare-thee-well, my only love

# And fare-thee-well a while

# For I'll come back to you, my love

# Though it were ten thousand mile

Miss Jenny, you're crying. I've been over the goose... the fumes...

Good evening, Miss Jenny. Good evening, gentlemen.

We were worrying about Professor Lindenbrook.

Yes, we were. Isn't he with you?

Isn't he here? No.

Careful it doesn't go too high, Paisley. It's just about the limit now, Sir Oliver.

I gave no permission for visitors. Oh, it's you, McEwen.

Good lad. You can lend Paisley a hand. Uncle, your guests are waiting.

If you don't come now, the goose will be...

Oh, goose, goose, goose! Tell him, Alec.

This lava you gave me is one in ten million. I've been at it all day.

Aye, and without a pause for lunch or tea. You've had three semesters of petrology.

Now then, from which volcano could this piece of lava have emerged?

Fujiyama? No.

Mount Etna? Very close. The Mediterranean.

The Lipari island group off the coast of Italy.

But theirs is a very light lava, sir. That's exactly what stumped me.

Inside there must be something the weight of the heaviest rock in existence.

But that would be Icelandic peridotite. Precisely.

There's a piece chipped off. By me.

What's the rock inside? Icelandic peridotite, naturally.

When I saw this, I stopped chipping.

There's some marks on the surface. Looks like a letter or some notches.

Three notches made by the hand of man.

But how could a rock from Iceland possibly pop out of a volcano across the world? What's your conclusion?

Science does not jump to conclusions. Science is not a guessing game.

We're going to melt off the crust of lava.

Mr Paisley.

Add 10cc of aqua regia.

Not too fast, you know.

I shall write to Professor Goetaborg of Stockholm about this.

He's the leading authority on volcanoes.

How long is all this going to take?

A typically female question. To melt lava will take as long as it takes lava to melt.

Maybe two hours, maybe four hours. Two hours? Four hours?

Maybe the whole night. Who cares?

Jenny!

Are you all right?

That was entirely my fault, Sir Oliver. I don't know how it could have happened.

Mr Paisley, by your slip you've rendered an inestimable service to science.

Alec.

See this? What would you call it?

As you said, it's a man-made object.

Looks like a top. A surveyor's instrument. A plumb bob.

Not only looks like - it is a plumb bob.

There are letters on it. It's an inscription. A message, perhaps.

Can you make out what it says, Professor?

It's in some Nordic tongue.

The hand that wrote this trembled. Perhaps it was a dying hand.

I wonder what it's written in. Paint? Ink?

Perhaps blood. Possibly.

Look at this side, sir. A signature.

Arne Saknus...

Arne Saknussem.

I hope it isn't too much to suggest that you take me home now, Uncle Oliver.

Or do I have to go alone?

Alone. Alone. It's unthinkable, but it must be true.

A man took some tools and went where no human being has ever set foot.

Alone. Into the interior of the earth, alone.

What is he talking about? Arne Saknussem, the Icelandic scientist.

Greatest of his day. He was laughed at when he claimed there was a world down below.

The laughter stopped when he disappeared, never to be heard from.

Until tonight.

Get out of here, woman! I didn't ask for tea.

I don't want any tea! All I want is my post.

There's no use shouting at me, Sir Oliver. I can shout just as loud as you can!

For two weeks you've had nothing to eat and you haven't slept!

Out, woman!

Here's your post, Uncle Oliver.

Another day and still nothing. Can you believe that? No answer!

Where is Alec McEwen? At the university, looking for letters there.

How long does it take for a letter to get here from Stockholm?

Answer the bell. Did it ring?

We have to speak to Sir Oliver. And don't tell us he's busy.

Callers, callers. That's all I need.

Oliver, we all know your reputation for rudeness.

You also have a reputation as a conscientious man.

But you've skipped every lecture in two weeks.

I'm involved in something important. More important than our university?

Something any university would envy us.

You laugh. What does the name Arne Saknussem mean to you, gentlemen?

Saknussem... Just a second.

Wasn't he the one who wrote about the lost city of Atlantis?

That was an early phase of his career. His real fame rests on his study of volcanoes.

Out of a volcano came this message from him.

It lay unnoticed for 100 years, was probably picked up by some peasant, gathered dust in a curiosity shop till it came to me.

Here is a translation of the words.

"I am dying, but my life's work must not be lost."

"Whoever descends into the crater of Sneffels Yocul can reach the center of the earth. I did it. Arne Saknussem."

The center of the earth? Sneffels Yocul?

An extinct volcano in Iceland. There must be a direct route from it to a region no man has ever seen.

But, Oliver, this is sheer fantasy.

You haven't heard all of it. There's a postscript.

"At sunrise on the last day of May the mountain Scartaris will point the path."

Well, what do you say now? I'm more mystified than ever.

Scartaris? It's a mountain peak near the volcano.

But this is a student's hoax. You should know better.

Just a second, Rector.

Let's not take that tone. Let's assume it's authentic.

Isn't the correct procedure to write a paper and submit it to the university officially?

More than anything, you must consult other experts.

A thing like this needs verification. Here is my paper.

And I've written to the foremost authority in Europe.

The Royal Geological Society?

More eminent still. Professor Goetaborg of Stockholm.

And what does he say?

Unfortunately I've not yet received his reply.

And I've written to him twice.

I suggest we relax on the matter until your famous correspondent sees fit to answer you.

And in the meantime we could do with a cup of tea.

I know you two think I'm daft.

Think whatever you want!

Jenny, tea!

When did you get here? Just this moment, Sir Oliver. Look.

It's from Stockholm!

Well, he's got his letter from Stockholm. Did you see the shine in his eyes?

There'll never be a better moment to tell him about our feelings for each other.

He'll say yes almost inadvertently. What if he says no advertently?

You wait and see how firm my voice can be when I speak of you.

Blast and damn! Blast and damnation!

The devil blast it! What is it, Oliver?

Don't keep us in the dark. Bad news, sir?

I am stricken. The University of Stockholm informs me that Professor Goetaborg has vanished from Sweden.

His disappearance follows closely the date my communication must have reached him.

With all my material.

He evidently didn't think it important enough to answer.

Or too important.

McEwen, go directly to the harbor. Find out when the next ship leaves for Iceland.

Oliver, calm down. I will not be beaten to my goal.

But what is your goal? You heard Saknussem's message.

Oliver, you're seriously ill. I am seriously well.

What are you waiting for? I told you to hurry. If you'll excuse me, I must start packing.

To go where? To Iceland to begin with.

And then? Where Arne Saknussem went.

Oliver! Will you kindly stop saying Oliver.

I can't sit in my classrooms waiting, while a scoundrel named Goetaborg exploits what I foolishly placed in his hands.

Don't you see what's at stake? The ultimate aim of all science: To penetrate the unknown.

Do you realize we know less about the earth we live on than about the stars and the galaxies of outer space?

The greatest mystery is right here, right under our feet.

And now, if you'll excuse me, gentlemen...

I must have a word with you. I've no time.

You must take time for this, sir. What are you so urgent about?

This is the most urgent moment of my life. Not for me. I have to be in Iceland.

So must I. I'm going with you, sir.

Where? To the center of the earth, naturally.

# My heart's in the Highlands

# A-chasing the deer

# A-hunting the wild deer

# And chasing the roe

# My heart's in the Highlands

# Wherever I go Right now all Iceland must be aware that the Scots have arrived.

I wish I could sing loud enough for Jenny to hear me.

Homesick already?

It is a bit painful to leave her on the first day of our engagement.

To come back to her as a world-famous scientist is not to be sneezed at.

Come here. Take a look.

Did you expect a flight of stairs with a red carpet?

I neglected to tell you, sir. I have a nervous fear of heights.

Well, you'll get over that after the first million fathoms or so.

Million fathoms...

Alec, he's been here.

He's been surveying here. This is fresh-cut wood.

Your revered colleague from Stockholm. He isn't wasting any time.

Do you think he's already gone down? No. The message said the last day of May.

Take our carriage to Reykjavik. Buy all the rope available.

Stock up on hardtacks, salted beef, chocolate, and all the medical supplies we need, but more than anything inquire whether they have Ruhmkorff lamps.

Have another carriage waiting for me at sunset.

You think we can prepare it all so quickly? We must. We're in a race.

What's that you're taking?

Jenny's farewell gift.

I'll keep it with me always.

Scartaris.


Back to my hotel. Já, Professor Goetaborg.


My good man. I assume my assistant sent you.

No, no, thank you. Nobody carries a soldier's weapons.

And take your time. These instruments are delicate.


Easy, coachman.

This isn't the same road we came by this morning. I said slow down, man!

You're out of your senses! Stop your horses, man! This is not a request, it's a command!

Can't you hear me? Slow down!

Stop, you fool!

Whoa!

If you've ruined my instruments, I'll horsewhip you, so help me.

And where are we? This certainly is not my hotel.

Professor! Alec!

Where are we?

Apparently in an eider-feather storehouse.

How did you get here? I don't know. It went so fast.

I was clubbed. I was overpowered before I knew there was a struggle.

Did you see who did it? No. I was just trying to do your errands.

I said Professor Goetaborg was a scoundrel. He's a criminal.

Very likely he's dreamed of such a project. Your letter was the key to the door of fame.

Hush. Did you hear that? What?

Some tapping.

Don't get your hopes up, Professor. There's not a soul around.

Everybody is in the market square. Why? It isn't Sunday.

The fishing fleet is going out for the first summer haul.

You mean the shops are closed? No, the shops are open.

But every piece of rope, every lamp, everything we'd need was sold.

To Professor Goetaborg.

He's staying in the very inn where we have our rooms.

This time I heard it too.

A fellow prisoner, do you suppose? Let's give it a signal, sir.

It's a code. Morse?

I can't just make it out. Jot this down.

Dash, dash, dot, dot, dot, dot, long dash...

It doesn't make sense. Perhaps it's in Icelandic.

I don't think so.

We've established contact.

I still can't make it out.

My esteemed friend, whoever you are, let me introduce myself.

Professor Oliver Lindenbrook, University of Edinburgh.

May I ask you to interrupt your tapping for a moment and listen?

In what language would you like me to speak?

He doesn't understand English. I'll try French.

Mon cher ami, vous et nous sommes dans une situation abominable.

It's no good, sir. It sounds more Russian.

Gertrude?

Gertrude! Gertrude!

It's a female prisoner. And her lover.

Professor, they're kissing.

I'm sorry, but for once we must dispense with tact.

Much as I regret to disturb this tender moment, is there any way you can get us out of here?

It's a duck!

And I was just about to try Latin!

Young man with the gold tooth, I'll give you more gold if you'll guide us to Reykjavik.

You take us to Reykjavik.

I understand that Professor Goetaborg from Stockholm is stopping here, a friend of mine.

A friend of yours? Professor Goetaborg? Let's say a colleague.

May I have your help?

He is at home, isn't he? Yes, I...

He is not at home. He is not to be disturbed.

Don't tell me he's asleep with this going on. You cannot see him. I'm sorry.

Here are your coins. And here is my card, if you'll be good enough to put it in his box so that he'll know tomorrow that I'm around.

Thank you so much.

Goetaborg! I know you're in there. Open up. This is Lindenbrook.

Goetaborg.

Do you see what this is, laddie? The very last word in equipment.

Ruhmkorff lamps.

Self-generating.

How long will they burn? My guess is indefinitely.

As long as they're wound up, the induction coil will give off current.

Breathing devices. The kind they use in coal mines in Wales.

All the instruments needed for exploring the world below, whatever it may be.

I shall wait here till Goetaborg returns.

You wait too.

Goetaborg may be a strong man.

More treasure, sir. Climbing boots.

Alpenstocks.

Blankets.

Food for months.

A chart of the...

Professor!

What?

Well, Goetaborg, it seems there's such a thing as justice after all.

So you wanted to push in ahead of us.

Fate took care of him.

Why didn't they tell us at the desk?

Hotels rarely advertise the fact that there are corpses lying around.

The Icelander teaches us a lesson.

All right. We'll observe one minute of silence in memory of a great scientist, even if he was a blasted thief.


Alec, you mentioned fate. Slight correction.

Fate plus a few grains of potassium cyanide.

He was against someone who was even more against him.

Who?


I'm the wife of Professor Goetaborg.

Oh, my dear. What is it?

I was surprised my husband wasn't at the pier to meet me. Is something wrong?

Won't you sit down for a minute before you go up?

Please, my dear.

He seemed so well. Early in the morning he went to the mountain.

When he came back for lunch he received his guest right in the lobby. I saw him myself.

They went up to his room and ate.

What are you trying to tell me? That my husband is?

His guest left about four.

In the evening when the maid went to make the bed...

Oh, dear God! As long as I can remember, no one ever died in my inn!

Of course, we called a doctor, but it was too late.

We left him up there because we knew you were due in on the morning boat.

Just ten days ago he was... he was joking on the pier in Stockholm.

The moment he arrived here he sent me a message, just with one word: "Come."

Madam, my deep sympathy.

My name - Oliver Lindenbrook of Edinburgh University.

I take it you're familiar with that name.

Professor Lindenbrook. I see you are.

I must ask you a question, and it's just as well that Madam Goetaborg be present.

This will be difficult for you, madam, but it must be faced.

Who was the last person to see him alive?

His luncheon guest.

And who was that? Count Saknussem.

Count Saknussem? I didn't realize the Saknussem family still existed.

The Saknussems are the oldest family in this whole land.

A descendant of Arne Saknussem?

And a scientist too in his own right.

And it was he who lunched with Professor Goetaborg?

They saw each other every day.

They worked together in his room with all those charts and instruments.

I suggest that you have an autopsy performed immediately.

You think there's something suspicious about my husband's death?

Your husband came to Iceland for the same reasons that brought me.

Neither he nor I could suspect there was a third party who would stop at nothing to forestall us.

He was... killed?

Poisoned.

This is now a matter for the police. Go and send for them at once.

To your room first, madam.

Just one second, if you please. Thank you.

I am deeply distressed by your husband's death, and I fully understand your feelings.

However, I must ask you one question.

How do you plan to dispose of the equipment your husband assembled up there?

What does it matter now? Don't give it another thought.

I'll take it off your hands. We can discuss it later.

No, we cannot discuss it later, madam. Time is running out.

My expedition must start within the next 24 hours.

Your expedition? Exactly.

I only know of the Goetaborg Expedition.

Husbands don't tell their wives everything.

I do not wish to blacken the memory of your husband, but as I'm under pressure, I must change my request to a demand.

I have a right to that equipment and I claim it.

A right? To take over the work of another man's lifetime?

He died for that idea. An idea he stole from me.

That is a lie. Madam...

An unforgivable lie!

I would rather destroy every pound of that equipment than let you have it.

"Incredible encounter."

"A Saknussem descendant turns up - acts as if he were King of Volcanoes."

"Tries to force me to surrender his ancestor's secret."

"Saknussem called again."

"New complication. My real adversary arrives: Lindenbrook."

"Undoubtedly to claim his rights. Must fight him somehow."

Young man, would you come here a moment, please?

Who are those for?

Professor Lindenbrook.

Oh. At least we have some rope. That's a beginning.

Tell him to stop jabbering and go for some more shopping.

What about lamps?

Lamps. Lamps.

What about picks?

And provisions. Food.

What are you doing? What are you doing? Put me down! Put me down!

Kindly put me down! Put me down!

Will somebody please explain this outrage?

Are we to be abducted every day in Iceland?

She speaks Icelandic. I do.

But I wish to apologize to you in plain English.

I went through my husband's diary, and some of his remarks led me to believe I did you an injustice.

I'm sorry. I didn't know. Don't give it another thought. I shan't.

I'm Sir Oliver's assistant, Alec McEwen.

This whole expedition began, thanks to this lad.

Began - and that's all it has done.

Sir Oliver, this morning you asked me for these.

If you still want them, they're yours.

Will you say that again?

I shall not stand in the way of the Lindenbrook Expedition.

Madam.

My husband had these boots made specially. I hope they fit you.

Mine will be ready without delay. I told your man to order some for me immediately.

Good, good.

What was that? Why would you need boots like this?

Well, I can't very well go in these.

Go where, madam? Don't say it.

Naturally, I'm coming along. That's why I'm giving you all of this.

It's a condition. I thought you understood. You didn't mention any condition.

Then I do now. Whom did you intend to take along, besides this young man?

The big Icelander. Then I'll be very useful.

He doesn't understand a word of English. You can't come along! You're a woman!

And what has my sex to do with it?

We're not contemplating a stroll down Piccadilly or the Champs Élysées.

Professor Lindenbrook, I have just lost my husband.

I have nothing else to live for any more up here.

Down there I can represent his name. The decision is not yours to make.

The police require your presence for the investigation into the death.

I have already given my testimony.

But, madam, quite apart from the appalling danger, think of the inconvenience.

The lack of privacy.

In short, you don't want all of this.

I may be mad on the subject of this journey, but I am not stupid!

To burden myself with a female is sheer stupidity!

I resent that word. I may have been a disturbance to men, never a burden.

This is an absolute holdup!

You will not receive one iota of extra consideration.

You'll sleep where we sleep, eat what we eat and wash when we wash.

Then you accept my proposition.


Professor, look!


There's our gateway!


Thank you, Scartaris!

Never was there a brighter sunrise.

Now we descend into oblivion or... we enter the great book of history.

Roll call.

Carla Goetaborg.

Alexander McEwen. Hans and Gertrude Belker.

Oliver S Lindenbrook.

What did he say? Hans and who?

And Gertrude.

Professor!

Professor!

All right, you've arrived.

Rather an alarming descent. I found it exhilarating.

I wonder if Madam Goetaborg will change her mind.

You make my mouth water.

Hans is tying the rope on her. I'm a fool.

I should have told him to tie her to a mule and send her back where she belongs.

In what language would you have told him that?

All right, she may be of some use in that respect.

And then there's always the blessed chance the rope may break.

Are you all right, ma'am? Quite.

Hans insisted on a double rope, you see.

Did he indeed? How solicitous. But that was for Gertrude.

Poor Sir Oliver, stuck with a woman.

If only you could see your face.

That's my consolation, madam. I don't have to look at it. You do.


There isn't enough rope in all Europe. Perhaps this is the wrong entrance.

The sign was unmistakable.

But there's no other way to continue.

Gertrude!

Gertrude!

He says there's a tunnel on the other side... slanting downhill but walkable.

Eureka!

Thank you.

Now then, a general summary.

A: We must never use more than two Ruhmkorff lamps at a time.

B: We will not be needing our breathing equipment for a long stretch.

Nevertheless, none of us must ever take a step without it.

C: Use canteens freely for now. There'll be plenty of mineral springs on our way.

As my husband's charts indicated.

Is Professor Goetaborg to be with us on our entire journey, madam?

Sorry.

Well, every journey begins with a first step.

May the good Lord be with us.

Onward.

And let's have some music. Alec, will you start us off?


Miss Jenny.

I saw you turn pale when the dominie spoke of those in peril at the far ends of the earth.

The far ends of the earth - at least that would be somewhere.

There was a clipping in a Stockholm paper. A dispatch from Reykjavik.

I can only read their names. I had it translated.

The last news was that they went up Mount Sneffels with some heavily laden donkeys.

Yes?

And then the animals came down without their packs.

And? And that's all.

Oliver S Lindenbrook, Alexander McEwen, Hans Belker and... Madam...

What's it? It seems a woman went with them.

A woman!


You know what they'll call that in the Royal Observatory at Greenwich?

A slight tremor, coming from undefined regions.

Well, we've lived through a slight tremor. Let us proceed.


It seems to be moving away from us.

Madam, in these regions I'd never venture to say that anything is moving away - or coming towards us.

The only thing we can be certain of is that danger is always with us.

We might as well ignore it.

Run!


Jump!


The three notches.

The three notches of Arne Saknussem.

What does that mean? We've been shown the right path.

Alec, the plumb bob.

Look. Without these marks, we would have gone astray.

We'd have wasted months exploring endlessly.

We might have taken any one of these channels.

But our great colleague maketh a path for our feet.

Well, you all deserve a rest. Let us have tea.

With a double ration of raisins.

May I comb my hair first, Professor?

Ladies on the left, gentlemen on the right.


What is it, madam?

If we'd known that you had nightmares, we'd have made different sleeping arrangements.

Someone is walking up there.

I heard footsteps. Human footsteps.

Madam, since the beginning of time all women have heard footsteps up there.

My hearing is extremely acute.

The hearing of all women is extremely acute.

My wife used to hear rats in the attic, usually the nights before I had an important lecture.

I used to go up, armed with a broom.

Alec, go up and find out. Hans.

Madam, will you leave those men alone? They need rest.

Moreover, it was stipulated that I give the orders.

There's no need to use that patient voice with me.

Would you rather I used an impatient voice?

Professor Lindenbrook, I am a member of this expedition, and as such I intend to report any observation I make.

Alec.

Put it down in the record that a member of the expedition reported... rats in the attic.

Lights out.

Don't be afraid, madam. I'm right here.


Conceal these marks completely.

I'll give them some new ones.


This is steeper than anything we've encountered.

It's just as well we all had a good night's rest.

Alec, take this down.

"21st day of our descent."

"Starting from an estimated depth of 129km, limestone formation continues."

Kai-ai, Professor. Here are the three notches again.

Good.

Gertrude, wrong turn. Let's see. What have we here?

One heads 220º south-southwest, the other 160º south-southeast.

Strange. I would have wagered we'd have to bear in that direction.

That was Gertrude's feeling too.

Are you sure your compass is right?

Quite.

What's he saying?

Hans is wondering about the ultimate goal of our expedition.

He's asking why. Alec, suppose you tell him.

Well, why does man freeze to death trying to reach the North Pole?

Why does man drive himself to suffer the steam and heat of the Amazon?

Why does he stagger his mind with the mathematics of the sky?

Once a question has arisen in the human brain, the answer must be found if it takes 100 years. 1,000 years.

Let's hear you render that into a few well-chosen Icelandic words.

Why not simply tell him scientists have bats in their belfries?

Are you all right? Can you unhook yourself?

Hans.

Grab his hand. I didn't see it.

Never mind about that.

How is it possible? This way was clearly indicated.

There must have been a quake since Arne Saknussem's day.

This is no recent fissure. This has been here since the beginning of time.

I was not in a position to observe it scientifically.

We've made a mistake somewhere. But where?


What are you doing here? We're supposed to stay together.

And we must never have more than two lamps.

We've been tricked. Tricked into the wrong tunnel.

Those three notches are not Arne Saknussem's.

She's right, Professor. Someone has passed through before us.

No need to ask who.

Madam... heard him last night.

Now she's saying "I told you so." Silently, I admit, but she's saying it.

When I wish to say something, Professor, I say it - aloud.

Due to this development, I have no choice but to break up the expedition.

We must return. Why?

You don't strike me as a man who frightens easily.

I'm not thinking of myself. You know that.

I must think of you, a woman. We agreed I was to be one of your men.

But if there is a madman loose... He's against all of us.

Against the very concept of this journey.

What's happened? What's he saying?

He said we should go back to where Alec fell.

But it's not on our route. If we're to go ahead, we have no time for detours.

Then you wait here.


If only my Jenny were here to see this.

Madam, now that the boy has gone and Hans doesn't understand English, I must ask rather a delicate question.

I'm blushing already.

You're wearing... stays, are you not?

Professor!

Yes, I thought so. I can hear them creaking as you walk along.

What I wear is not your business.

Everything is my business. We'll look the other way while you discard them.

Professor, you go too far.

We're approaching regions of excessive heat.

Nothing must impede anyone's breathing in any way.


Alec! Leaving in a few minutes!


I've got to take a specimen of this back to Edinburgh, if it's the last thing I do.

Unique. Inexplicable.

All right, ready to go, if that boy Alec would be good enough to appear.

Where the devil is he?


It's a blind alley!

Keep back!


Professor!

Hans!


Good God!

Hold on. Hold on to my arm... my shoulder!

Little bit... Hold on. That's it.

Praise the Lord!


Alec.

Professor!


Hello! Hello!

Professor! Professor! Here I am!


Salt.


Alec!

Alec!

Professor.

Professor, you can't go on this way. I've kept track of the passage of days.

You haven't. We'll try the cross-channel over there.

We were in that channel yesterday. We left marks.

You won't find him there. I've got to find him. I'm responsible.

Look.

No need to translate. I can see that this is a recent break.

Alec!

Can you hear me?

If you're down there, give us a sign!

Alec, listen carefully. When the echoes stop, you must try to answer.

If you're injured, if you can't talk, make an effort.

Pick up a pebble and scratch the rock. We'll hear you, I promise you.

Just give us a sign.

A phosphorescent pool. A strange grave for a young Scot.

Professor, there's no use.

How can I live with myself?

Accept his loss, like one soldier accepts the loss of another soldier.

You must continue with what you started.

You must go on with the Lindenbrook Expedition.

The Lindenbrook Expedition! Yes. Go on with it.

It was his project as much as it was yours.

Yes, you're right.

We will proceed. But we won't call it the Lindenbrook Expedition any more.

From now on it's the Alec McEwen Expedition.


No broken bones? Ribs all right?

Good. Get up.

Down there, food and water. Refresh yourself.

So you've lost your friends? Just as well.

It's my servant.

Too much heat, too much load... too much fear.

You're younger. You'll do to carry my things.

I'm not your servant, Count Saknussem.

Pride? Rather out of place here. Eat, drink, then pick up those things. I'm in a hurry.

To steal the professor's project? Steal?

Listen, young foreigner, I don't have to steal what belongs to me.

You're in my world now.

Stop. I need someone to carry my equipment.

You will never find your companions or your way out. You need me as much as I need you.

You found me. My friends could find me too.

Very well. You'll carry it with one arm, not two!

A hail of bullets. No, no.

It's a multiple echo, reverberating through the rock chambers.

The last echo will give us the direction.

166º south-southeast.

Alec. Alec.

Alec. Alec!

We'd given you up, but you're alive, laddie.

You're alive!

Professor.

Hans.

Just to see you...

Where was he?

I... I didn't think he'd shoot, but he did.

Of course I did. What did you expect?

You are trespassers here. I am the owner of this domain.

You are also the murderer of my husband.

I claimed my rights. He would not listen.

Count Saknussem, in the name of your great ancestor, put down that preposterous gun.

No harm will come of it if you accept my terms.

You will go back the way you came, but you will leave the equipment I need and that man.

You're not going to listen to a murderer?

Never interrupt a murderer, madam.

I resent that bourgeois classification.

I'll spare your lives. You have my word of honor.

Give me your hand on that.

A bourgeois trick.

So sorry.

Now then, before we continue on our journey, we must perform a solemn duty.

We have to hold court.

Here, hundreds of kilometers beneath the surface of the earth, we are the law.

The defendant stands accused of one murder and one act of mayhem.

To preserve legal formalities I must ask you, as jurors, is the defendant guilty or not guilty?

Guilty.

Guilty.

Guilty.

Then the mandatory sentence is death.

There are two bullets left. Madam, will you be good enough to explain to Hans?

We will follow the route marked by the notches.

He is to wait here for ten minutes, then carry out the sentence.

No, no, no, no, no. I can carry something with my left hand.

You can carry yourself for a couple of days. That's all we can expect.

Sir Oliver, there's a slight problem. Our friend Hans refuses to shoot the count.

What do you mean, "refuses"? It's a court order.

It seems his family have been loyal to the Saknussems for generations and, well, he cannot touch the gun.

This is contempt of court.

All right, Alec. No, no, Professor... I mean, Sir Oliver.

You mustn't look at me. I, um... I couldn't pull the trigger with my left hand.

Oh, no. You... you couldn't consider for a moment that I could do it.

After all, I'm a woman. I see.

For weeks you've been denying your sex, and now you fall back on it.

I would say the natural executioner would be the leader of the expedition.

We must face the truth, sir.

We're much too civilized to... to do away with a fellow human being.

What do you propose? Drag him with us? Feed him? Let him share our glory?

Stop fiddling with those lamps.

What's he jabbering about?

I'll tell you what he's saying. The lamps are giving out.

And I'll give you the reason. The induction coils have been corroded by the salt.

To save what we can, I insist that we leave these regions at once.

You insist?!

As a matter of fact, he's bloody well right. Let's be off.

You realize Saknussem's unfastened himself from the rope again and gone off?

What's the harm? He'll be back when it's time to eat.

The harm is, madam, that he's wasting a lamp.


Madam, will you try your lamp, please?

It's dead. Yours, Alec?

When these things are gone, they're really gone.

Madam, make a final note, while you've still light enough to write by.

Let me, madam. My arm's quite well now. No need.

"We've covered another 92km."

"Temperature dropped seven degrees."

"It's surprisingly cooler than anticipated... but darkness is closing about us."

"This may be our last entry."

Hans and I can cut some rope into some torches.

That's a good idea. What puzzles me is that the three notches of old Arne Saknussem still keep pointing our way.

What kind of a lamp did he have?

Perhaps my ancestor did not require a lamp.

From here on neither do you, Sir Oliver. Why don't you turn it off?

Yes, just switch it off.

Why, it's miraculous!

Look at this.

What is it, sir?

A form of algae with the property of luminescence.

Light without heat. A cool, chemical light.

You've seen fireflies, madam, and glowworms, and forms of life in the sea that generate their own light.

The same principle is involved here.


"256th day."

"The phenomenal winds vanished as abruptly as they came."

"We are now in a stupendous deposit of cinnabar."

What's that curious mark you make on every page?

ME. McEwen Expedition.

So whenever I've said Lindenbrook Expedition, you've written McEwen Expedition?

May I remind you that months ago you gave me explicit orders to that effect?

You may not remind me! I do not wish to be corrected by you incessantly.

Is that what I'm doing?

You're doing it with your looks, the inflection of your voice, the very posture of your body.

Your entire presence is a constant criticism of me.

I'm tired of it. I've had enough.

You've had enough.

Well, let me tell you, you dried-up walnut of a man, if anyone's had enough, it's me.

It's I. It's I, it's me!

It's Carla Goetaborg! I quit! I am leaving!

May I send for madam's horse and carriage?

Well...

Well, at least you know I have a temper.

And from now on Alec will keep the charts. Alec! Alec!

Why can't he stay around?


Kai-ai-ai-ai-ai-ai!

Mushrooms! A forest of mushrooms!

They may be hundreds of years old, but the small ones we can eat! They're delicious.

To think they grew without sun this far under the earth!

All the food we can eat!

It's tougher than leather.

We'll have new soles for our shoes.

It's like an oak tree.


Madam, you're magnificent. Mushroom steak, mushroom soup, mushroom hash.

Let me say this. If we'd had one more week of that salted beef, I would have perished.

Don't be too happy. After some months of this, you'll be smacking your lips at the thought of salt beef.

Yes, months, months. If we only knew how many more.

There's no term to the work of a scientist.

Let me say this, madam. If you hadn't been along, this whole journey would have been unbearable.

But that's not Professor Lindenbrook's feeling.

It's mine.

You see, we have no sun, no moon and no stars.

But then you're here.

And what is the name of the girl you love?

I beg your pardon? The girl you love?

What's her name? Jenny.

But why would you want to know that just now?

Dear Alec! There are times when it's advisable to jog a young man's memory.

Professor?

Here's some hot mushroom porridge for you, Sir Oliver.

I slept as I never slept in Edinburgh.

No street noises, no church bells, no clatter of pans from the kitchen.

I may move here permanently.

What's our large friend doing over there?

I don't know.

Special command of His Majesty.

Is that madman still giving orders? This is supposed to be his rest period.

The minute you fell asleep he went off in that direction, through the tunnel.

He came back long enough to order the felling of the mushrooms.

What in the world can he want with all those?


You've come to ask me why I didn't take my rest period.

I don't sleep. I hate those little slices of death.

It's a sea. It's an ocean with waves and currents.

The ocean of the underworld.

Some earthquake, before the beginning of history, cracked wide open the great sea and through the fissures poured this.

The fissures closed again.

No map ever recorded the Saknussem Ocean.

I so christened it while you were asleep.

It's the prerogative of the discoverer. I congratulate you.

You realize, Lindenbrook, that from now on there will be no notches to follow.

That's why you ordered a raft. I approve.

A dimetrodon!

If I had my gun, we'd have fresh meat for dinner.

That's what he's seen. He's a flesh eater.

Can he swim? No, thank God.


The wind blowing down the high street!

Here.

I brought you some nice apples.

I wonder if it's cold where they are. Where they are. Indeed.

Are they anyplace?

McEwen, put that toy away and take over the rudder.

Yes, sir.

I didn't tell you to throw it away. It flew out of my hand!

My watch!

Save the instruments. What's happening?

My ring! My wedding ring.

A field of force that snatches gold away. This is it! This is it!

The junction of magnetic forces from the North Pole and South Pole!

The center of the earth!

Hang on!

Hold on to your rope!


No!


Is everyone here?

Madam Goetaborg, Alec, Hans.

Gertrude.

And His Highness over there.

So... the expedition with all the names... ends like this.

We're alive, aren't we?

After all, we did hit the center of the earth.

It hit us, laddie.

No need to tell us, madam. He wants to know where we go from here.

Tired minds don't plan well.

Sleep first, plan later.

When I refused to eat my porridge when I was a boy, my mother - like all mothers - used to say

"Oliver, the day may come when you'd very much like to have that porridge."

Why do you look so surprised? Is it incredible to you that I ever had a mother?

I was just thinking how proud she'd be of that little boy who wouldn't eat his porridge.


Here, duck.

Here, duck.

Gertrude?

Gertrude?

Gertrude?

Gertrude!

Gertrude!

Gertrude! Gertrude!

Gertrude!


Hans! Hans!

Why do you look at me like that?

Hans!

I needed food, so I took it.

Professor, tell your man to calm himself.

I'm not in the mood to engage in a dispute about a slaughtered duck.

Professor, stop him! Stop this fool!

Hans! Hans!

You ingrates! What can you do without me?

Only I can show you the way out of this realm of mine.

Look out!


This is the sunken city.

After 5,000 years, behold a fragment of the lost Atlantis.

All we know about it comes from the Greek.

The floor of the sea opened up and swallowed the whole island of Atlantis.

This must have been the market square.

Professor. Professor, this looks like some sort of inn.

It is an inn. An eating place, certainly.

"Eating." What a word. What a wonderful word.

Well, we've learned one thing about the inhabitants of Atlantis.

They ate oysters.

Stale bread. We must speak to the baker.

Madam! Madam!

Já?

He's asking if that was a temple to their god. Yes, I'm sure it is.

It's some sort of altar stone where the sacred flame burned.

It's serpentine, isn't it? Exactly. A massive form of asbestos.

To think that at a moment like this I've no pad and pencil to record it all.

Turn around, madam. Don't look.

What is it?

The great Arne Saknussem, I presume.

So this is as far as you came.

What's the matter with you two? Say "how do you do" to a brave man.

He must have dragged himself here with a broken leg. Look at that tibia.

You won't find anything edible in there. Why not?

The Chinese eat eggs over 400 years old.

Gunpowder.

Professor, look at his right hand.

It's pointing somewhere.

To that shaft over there.


Of course! Of course! This is what the pointing finger meant!

This is the way up. He couldn't make it, but we can!

This is the volcanic chimney. The violent updraft can mean only one thing:

A direct hatchway to the surface.

And we can climb up. Madam, explain to Hans.

Let him venture 100 meters or so on reconnoiter.

The updraft can't carry him away.


Now I'd say let's roll up our sleeves - if we had any.

We mustn't hope for much. This light won't stay with us.

We'll have to provide some kind of light. And food.

I'll go see what I can find. I'll comb every inch of Atlantis.


If we only had some shears, we could cut it off.

Could we?

Kai-ai! Kai-ai!

Kai-ai! Kai-ai!

Flints! I've found some flints.

Good lad. We won't be walking in darkness.

I wish I had better news. It gives every indication of being a perfect passage upward, straighter than the one we descended.

But... But? But?

There's an obstacle. A gigantic block of stone obstructs the passageway.

Hans said only a landslide could ever move it.


No, let him be.

If his hopes hadn't been so high...

Alec! Yes, sir?

The haversack - Arne Saknussem's haversack. Get it.

If God is with us and that gunpowder has kept its ginger over the years, we'll make that landslide ourselves.


Now, my wonderful companions, you realize, I hope, that we're taking an enormous chance.

But it's our only chance.

I guarantee that this'll blow up the obstructing rock.

Whether the surrounding rocks will take the disturbance lightly, I cannot guarantee.

Let's get what protection we can.

Into the altar stone.


Dear God, ruler of heaven and earth...

Don't set any limit to his realm, laddie.

God of the universe, we are in thy merciful hands.


Look out! Run, Professor! A monster!

Let me go!


We've started an earthquake!


The lava is pushing us up!


It's an earthquake of unusual magnitude! More likely it's a volcanic eruption.

Listen to this. "Stromboli, Italy. First eyewitness report."

"The capsule of the dead volcano broke under a tremendous explosion."

"Rocks of extraordinary size are being spewed out into the sea."


Dammi una mano.

Piano. Piano.

Passami il vino. Ecco.

Signora, beva, beva.

Where's Alec?

Hans says... Alec was thrown from the altar stone... long before we hit the water.

Non si preoccupi. Abbiamo uno scalino.

I'm most grateful, ladies, but my immediate need is not a ladder.

I need trousers. Pants.

Pantaloons. Pantaloons.

Vuole i pantaloni. Pantaloni.

Don't bring them yourselves. Send a friar, a monk.

Excuse me, ladies.

Excuse me.

Lindenbrook! Lindenbrook!

Speech! Speech!

Fellow Scots, if these shouts of yours express some pleasure that we've returned alive, I thank you deeply.

However, if they're meant as praise for a successful scientist, I must disclaim that honor.

No. A scientist who cannot prove what he has accomplished has accomplished nothing.

I have no records, no shred of evidence.

I will never embarrass this distinguished university by asking that it take my word.

Let me say only this.

300 years ago a daring man undertook a perilous journey and never came back.

We followed his path and returned, by the grace of God - and a heathen altar stone.

One day someone else - it may be you, my boy, or your sons or your grandsons - will pick up where we left off.

This, I know: The spirit of man cannot be stopped.

Splendid, Oliver. Splendid speech.

Professor, here's someone who wants to say goodbye.

His ship sails at four.

Hans, old friend. We never could have done without you.

He has a speech.

If you... if you will ever go down there again, the center earth, Hans will go too.

Thank you.

Did you get your injuries when the volcano blew up, in the hot lava?

No, it happened at our wedding.

He was in such a hurry leaving the church, he fell all the way down the steps.

You poor wee bride. After all that waiting.

It's been no marriage for you at all.

You underestimate Alec.

I'm taking the night train to London and then back to Stockholm.

Stockholm? But you have ajob to do here in Edinburgh.

I? I intend to write my memoirs.

I can't remember everything that happened alone.

Oh, I see. What you need is a widow who can jog your memory and take dictation.

I suppose I'm to report every day from nine till twelve, from two to six?

No, none of that nonsense. You can stay in my house.

And what would Edinburgh say?

It's one thing to spend one's days and nights with a man under the earth, another under one roof in Scotland.

Well, uh... what do you propose?

That's not a word I'd bandy about, Professor.

What did I say? Which word?

I thought it would catch in your throat.

Madam. Madam.

Thank you. Madam Goetaborg. Frau Goetaborg!

Carla!

Yes... Oliver?

Carla...

I warn you...

I'm wearing stays again.

# Here's to the prof of geology

# Master of all natural history

# Rare boy he, and rare boys we

# To know such a big curiosity

# To the braw, aye, aye, aye, aye

# To the bricht, aye, aye, aye, aye

# To the knicht, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye, aye

# Hey