Damsel (2024) | Transcript

A dutiful damsel agrees to marry a handsome prince, only to find the royal family has recruited her as a sacrifice to repay an ancient debt.

Title: Damsel (2024)
Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Runtime: 108 min
Director: Juan Carlos Fresnadillo
Cast: Millie Bobby Brown, Ray Winstone, Angela Bassett…
Plot: In this new fantasy film, a young woman who thinks she is being married to a perfect prince is thrown into a pit where she discovers she’s not going to be a princess after all, but a sacrifice to appease a bloodthirsty dragon. Trying to survive long enough until someone can save her — she soon realizes that no one is coming and this “damsel” must save herself.

* * *

[Elodie] There are many stories of chivalry where the heroic knight saves the damsel in distress.

This is not one of them.

[horses chuffing]

[tense music playing]

[wings flapping]

[King] There it is.

Form up!

Let’s kill the beast.

For glory! Hyah!

Be on guard.

[soft cracking]

[dragon snarls]

[swords clanging]

[dragon roaring]

Form the line!

[soldiers breathing shakily]

[dragon snarls, shrieks]

[soldiers screaming]


[wings flapping]

[soldiers screaming]

[dragon snarls]



[Floria] The last I could find.

[Elodie] Did you take the tapestries into town like Father asked?

[Floria] This morning.

We should take the furs too, and the drapes.

Not the drapes!

You hate that pattern in your room anyway.

They serve a purpose.

Floria, our people are freezing.

And starving.

[carriage driver shouting indistinctly]

Who’d come this far north?

[Floria] Elodie, why are they leaving?

[Elodie] There’s nothing left for them here, Floria.

[man 1] I don’t have enough. Please, I’m hungry.

[woman 1] For food, join the line!

[man 2] Keep to one side.

[man 3] I’m starving.

All right then.

[man 4] Get off! It’s mine!

Hey! Give me back my food.

Get off of me, old man!

You’ve had enough!

[woman 2] Share this with your sister. Go on.

Could you see who it was?

[guard] A stranger, my lady.

They may take whatever wood they can carry.

I’ll see to it.

Come on, Flor.

[woman 2] Move on.

[woman 3] Yes.

[man 5] Get in line.

Give it to me.

[woman] I want to meet her first.


You must be Elodie.

I am.

She will do.

[Lord Bayford sighs softly]

[Red Priestess] We await your decision.

Thank you, Your Holiness.

Please, this way.

Father, what’s happening?

Who is that?

[reading indistinctly]


Well, what is it?

[Lord Bayford] From the Queen of Aurea.

[chuckles softly]

A proposal.

Oh, my goodness.

[Lord Bayford] Huh…

I have made a match.

May I?

[Lord Bayford] Uh-huh.

He is a prince.

A prince?

I know you’ve always wished to travel, as did your mother.

Go. See the world.

This man, he has a fleet of ships, carriages full of gold.

That’s no reason to marry.

We need this.

Our stores are empty.

We will not make it to the thaw.

Your people need you.


This is who we are.

[sailor 1] Get to the port side.

[sailor 2] Port side.

[indistinct chatter]

Elodie, what’s the matter?


Father says it’s natural to be nervous about meeting your new husband and his family.

They’re strangers.

I’ve never heard of the Kingdom of Aurea until Father sprang this on me.

[sailor 1] Mind the lines.


Are you crazy? What are you two doing up there?

Come down here.

Come on.

This is how you want your prince to meet you?

Scared, cold as a corpse.

Nose all drippy and wet.

What have I been telling you this entire trip?

[both] First impressions are everything.


[sailor 2] Come on, lift up.

[exhales sharply]

[sailor blowing horn]

[sailor 3] Look at that.

I have good news, girls.

The captain informs me we approach Aurea’s coastline.

It should be any time now.

[Lord and Lady Bayford chuckle]


What in the world?

Looks almost… almost like a…

A dragon.

[horn bellowing]

[horn bellowing continues]

It’s okay.

[Lady Bayford chuckles]

[ethereal music playing]

[breathes deeply]

Oh, my heavens. [chuckles]


It’s magnificent.

My lords, my ladies, be welcome to the Kingdom of Aurea.

The royal family is at prayer,

but word has been sent of your arrival.

In the meantime, your rooms have been made ready.

If you will follow me.

[Floria] Is this a dream?

If so, can I move in and never wake up?

[Lady Bayford shushes]

If you want these people to think we belong here,

you can’t act so easily impressed.

What do you think, Ellie? Hmm?

I think I had a rather limited definition of wealthy.

[birds chirping]

[chamberlain] I pray this is to your liking, my lady.

A bath has been drawn

and supper has been carried hence.

At first light, I shall return to convey you

to meet His Royal Highness.

Henry, Prince of Aurea.

[chuckles softly]

[Lady Bayford] Floria, stop touching everything.

Is something wrong?

I just hope he’s kind.


And well-read.



Let’s all give Elodie some privacy.

She can use the time to settle in, as we all could.

Oh, indeed.


[birds chirping]

[maid] M’lady.

Everyone’s waiting.

[wind whistling outside]



I can’t sleep.

I still can’t believe you’re going to live here from now on.

You and me both.

I keep thinking, if only Mother were alive,

I could just talk to her about all of this.

Perhaps you could talk to Stepmother.

She means well, even if she is a bit…



It’ll be fine. You’ll see.

You’re Elodie. You can do anything.

[Queen Isabelle] What is your greatest strength?

[Elodie] I always tell the truth, Your Majesty.

[Queen Isabelle] Some might call that a weakness.

Do you know your heart?

[Elodie] I believe I do, Your Majesty.

[Queen Isabelle] And what is it telling you now?

In truth, it is beating too loudly for me to hear much of anything, Your Majesty.

[Queen Isabelle] Arise, Elodie.

I’m Henry.

Very pleased to finally meet you, my lady.

We all are.

My son understates our joy.

And if I may say so,

your father has understated your beauty.

I’ve never known my father to understate much of anything, Your Majesty.

[chuckles] I see she arrives with some wit.

Should you want it or not, Your Majesty.

And you must be Floria.

It seems even a harsh clime can grow the fairest flowers.

I love your castle.

I mean, I really love it.

Like, a lot…

Your Majesty.

You are to make yourself at home, child.

We elders have some trivial matters like weddings to attend to.

[Lord Bayford] Yes…

Your correspondence made mention of some particulars

you wish to discuss in person.

The two of us can confer in private.


It’s nothing to bore our young people with.

They have a far more important task at hand.

They must get to know each other.

[Henry] Do you have any questions of me?

[Elodie] Questions of what subject?

You may choose the subject.

What do you think about me?


Well, you seem disinterested at best, which is your prerogative,

but I’d like to know if the person I’m being guilted into marrying

truly likes me or not.

[scoffs lightly]

If my attitude offends you, I do apologize. It was not my intent.

However, I was unaware that, um, you were being guilted into anything.

The land where I come from is exactly how your mother explained.

Harsh and barren.

This union will save us.

I’ve made my peace with it.

My happiness is a small price to pay for the future of my people.

Is something wrong?

It’s just…

In the letter you sent in advance of your arrival, you sounded different.

[chuckles] Different. In what way?

Far more, um…


[both laugh]

Maybe that’s because my stepmother dictated most of it

and my sister’s idea was the heart…

The heart.


I thought it was some sort of provincial insignia.

You actually drew this?


Hold on. It’s a maze, isn’t it?

“I hope you’ll get to know my heart.”

That is very clever.

I used to make them for Floria when she was little.

May I ask you another question?


Do they always follow you so closely?

This is them giving me space.

That must be tiring.

It is, actually.

I saw some horses being left unattended at the stables.

Do you ride?

[horses whinny]

[riveting music playing]

[Elodie] Hyah!

Where did you learn to ride like that?

My mother.

Which way now?

Well, depends on what you want to see.


Very well.

[doors open]

What happened in there?

Speak already.

Is the wedding still on?


You settled on a fair bride price?

More gold than I could ever imagine.

[Lady Bayford gasps softly]

Then why do you look so?

No, it’s nothing. I’m fine.

Tell me, you didn’t say anything to embarrass us.

No, I did not.

Because it’s very important that our two families get along.

Not only for Elodie’s sake, but for ours.

I said, nothing! Nothing’s wrong.

I saw something, high on the mountain last night.


You saw that?

I couldn’t sleep.

It was an ancient ceremony.

Or rather, one of three.

They’re very significant to my family.

For our whole kingdom, really. They, um…

They honor our ancestors.

That’s why my mother chose these dates for our wedding.

[Elodie] It is quite beautiful.

[Henry] Yes, I suppose.

I really don’t have anything else to compare it to.

May I confide in you something?


My greatest wish is to go see the world.

Really set out and see it, you know?

I do, actually.

It’s my life’s dream.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve longed to explore the distant lands.

The ones you only read about.

[Elodie chuckles softly]

Perhaps, one day, we will.


[bell tolling]

[woman] And the orange in this area.

[Lady Bayford] Everything’s so beautiful, Your Majesty.

Well, I’m glad you approve.

Very elegant.

You have impeccable taste.

Everything is just so exquisite.

I’m sorry, is there something I can help you with?

I just thought we might become better acquainted,

seeing as we’re about to be family.

Ah, this must be very exciting for you.

Your father was a rope maker, was he not?

The finest in the city.

And here you are. You’ve climbed so high.

Still, one mustn’t forget one’s station.

Nor place undue import

on what is ultimately a transaction born of necessity.

Uh… “Necessity”?

Well, your family needs money.

My family needs a bride.

What we don’t need is more family.

I wish all the best for Henry and Eloise.

I merely…



My stepdaughter. Her name is Elodie.

That’s what I said.

Good day, Lady Bayford.

It’s perfect.

Everything in here is so perfect.

[Elodie] Stepmother.

Is something the matter?


I know we haven’t always been close,

but I need you to listen to me now.

This wedding… is a mistake.

[scoffs] What?

I don’t understand.

These people, I don’t trust them.

It’s hard to explain, but a mother knows these things.

Only yesterday, you were enamored by this place.


I was wrong.

They may be royalty, but that doesn’t make them good people.

[Elodie] Well…

What does Father think?

He refuses to talk about it.

And when I try to tell him my worries, he snaps at me.

Because you’re being unreasonable.

That’s enough, Flor.

Elodie, I swear that I only want what’s best for you.

Am I interrupting something?



girl talk.

Well, tomorrow’s a big day, and these girls, they need their rest.

Think about what I said. There’s still time.

Time for what?

[Lady Bayford] I hope you know what you’re doing.

Good night, my angels.

Good night, Father.

Good night, Father.

Good night.

[birds chirping]

[somber instrumental music playing]




[Elodie sighs deeply]

[Floria] Wow.

[serene music playing]

[priest] You may kiss the bride.

I present my son and new daughter, Elodie, Princess of Aurea.

[guests applaud, cheer]

Goodbye, Father.

[softly] I hope I’m half as beautiful someday as you are today.

Twice as beautiful.

I love you.

I love you.

Hey! Hey, hey!

[Elodie] Where are we going?

[Henry] Remember I told you about those ancient ceremonies up on the mountain?

[Elodie] Yes.

[Henry] We’re going to pay homage to my ancestors.

[wind whistles]

Welcome, Princess.

For generations, it has been our task, our duty,

to protect our people.

The price is dear, but so too the reward.

So, tonight,

you join a long line of women who have helped to build this kingdom.

When our ancestors first lay claim to this island,

they found they were not its sole inhabitants.

A creature dwelt here first.

The last of its kind.

With savage bloodlust,

the beast left its lair and set upon the village.

So the king gathered his soldiers to avenge his people.

But their steel was no match for the monster,

and each man met his end.

Each save one.

For the king, the beast had a far worse fate in store.

Give up his three beloved daughters and the island could be shared.

A cruel torture.

He adored his daughters,

but his duty to his subjects was stronger.

And so, a pact was made.

The three princesses met their end in the belly of the beast,

and a kingdom was born.

It is this sacrifice we commemorate every generation.

A tradition going back centuries.

Your hand, child.

A legacy of honor and duty you now inherit, Princess Elodie of Aurea.

Let our two lines mingle and fast become one.

She is now of royal blood.

[inhales sharply, exhales]

To ensure that our kingdom thrives forevermore,

pay your due to the realm.

[softly] Toss the coin into the chasm.

The ceremony is now complete.

You may make your return.

I’m supposed to carry you back.

I’m fine with walking, really.

Floria would love this part.

Close your eyes.

I’ve got you.

[Henry breathing shakily]

[softly] I’m sorry.

[Elodie screams] No!


[vines, branches cracking]



[groans softly]


Help me!

[voice echoing]



Is anyone there?!

[voice echoing]

[ominous music playing]



[screams, grunts]

[necklace clangs]

[branch snaps]


[grunts, groans]

That’s not mine.

I am the sacrifice.

I am the sacrifice?

[distant fluttering]


[faint screech]

[gasps softly]

[fluttering continues]

[bird shrieking]

You poor thing.

What happened to you?

[dragon roars]

[birds screeching]

[birds chirping faintly]

[Elodie whimpering]

Give me strength, Mother.

[dragon] Mother?


[dragon snarls, growls]

[wind gusts]

[dragon snarling]

[ominous music playing]

[footsteps thumping]



[dragon] Your name, little bird?

Speak your name.




What do you want?

I want… what is promised.

What is owed.

Every generation, your kind must pay.

[softly] My kind?

The scent of royalty betrays you.

It’s in your blood.

Now, my favorite part.



[dragon shrieks]


[Elodie shrieks]


[dragon growls softly]

[Elodie grunting]




[footsteps approaches]

[dragon] Did I hurt you?

Quiet now?

[chuckles softly] A clever one.

The last one was over so quick.

[footsteps receding]

[groans in pain]

[winces, screams]

[whimpers] No.


Mother wanted you to fight.




[cloth tears]




[weakly] No. No.

[breathing heavily]



[Lord Bayford] He is a prince.

[Queen Isabelle] They must get to know each other.

[Henry] My greatest wish is to go see the world.

[Elodie] Perhaps, one day we will.

[grunts, yells]



One for the dress.

Don’t worry.

I won’t hurt you.

[water dripping]



[water dripping intensifies]

[Elodie screams]

Almost caught you, little bird.

You hide now, like all the others.

It makes no difference.

This story always ends the same.

[Elodie] V.







How many?

Did anyone make it out?

[flesh squelches]


[Elodie grunts, shivers]

[woman whimpering]

[woman shrieks]

Please, don’t.


[stone scraping]


[humming softly]

It’s a lie.



[groans] Get off.


I’m deeply sorry…

for underestimating you.

A map.

[sighs] Now, where am I?

A tree.

The entrance cave.

Following down into the bird cave.

Through the twisted tunnel…

reaching water.

The glowworm cave.

Keep following down.

I am here.

How do I escape?

Is this it?

Did a princess make it out?

Three ways. Take the middle fork.

Music note.


Go on.

And then… I am free.

The middle fork.

[dragon growls softly]


[musical tinkling in distance]


[tinkling continues]


This is it.


Wish me luck.

You made it out.

[dragon growls in distance]

[continues growling]




[Elodie screams]

[dragon] Elodie.

Fly, little bird.


[wind whistling]

[wind whistling]

[solemn music playing]

[horse whinnies]




I’m here! Help!




There is no way out, Princess.

Not for any of you.


Three were taken.

Three must be given.

[dragon screeches]


[man] Elodie!

[dragon] What’s this?

[man] Elodie!


Move on.

I’ve done what you paid for, milord. I’ll just wait up top.

You’ll do no such thing.

I hired you to guide us to her.

No one leaves here without my daughter.

[man 2] Elodie!


[Queen Isabelle] A creature dwelt here first.

The last of its kind.

It’s a lie.

Three taken.

[soft cracking]


Slay the vile young.


[dragon roaring]

Form the line!

Please, spare me.

Show mercy.

I will give you anything.


[dragon] Death is not enough for you.

You will know my pain.

[man 1] Elodie!




Be quiet. She can hear you.

I warned you. It’s too late. The beast lurks in its lair.

It’s surely taken her there to devour…

This lair. Where is it?

Sir, your daughter’s been down here nigh on too long.

She’s almost certainly been killed.

[man 2] Elodie!

I’m told some have tried to hunt the beast.

For its blood.


[man 1 screaming]

[continues screaming]



Why are you here?

I’m here for my daughter.







I beg of you.

It’s not my mercy that you should seek.

Call her.

She’s alive?

Elodie’s still alive?

I smell her.



Call her.


Call her.


Can you hear me?

I have… I have made a horrible, horrible mistake.

To sacrifice the one thing I love most.

To trade your life

for the good of my people.

I thought that I could take the gold.

That I could live with myself.

My choice.

But I can’t.

I can’t.

[snarls, screeches]

[Lord Bayford grunts]

[dragon] Tell her to come to you.

Last chance.

Elodie. Hear me.

I am your father. You will obey me.

I order you.

Do not come out!



[Lord Bayford screaming]








Use the ropes.

Your stepmother and Floria,

they wait for you at the ship.

Forgive me.

[Elodie grunting]


[Elodie yells]

Go! Go! Go!



[distant rumbling]

That damn girl. I knew she was trouble.

Where are you going?

To fix this.

[guard 1] Stop.

[guard 2] Stand back.

[horses approaching]

[horse whinnies]


[soldier] Open up!

Get out of the way!

[guard grunts]

[bangs on door]

Get out!

Seize her.

You can’t!

No! She’s just a child!

[Floria] No!

You promised us a daughter.



Floria! [gasps]

[Floria screams]








[Lady Bayford] Oh!

Thank God.

Are you all right?

I can manage.

Where’s Floria?

They took her to the caves in your place.

I tried to stop them from taking your sister.

I have to save her.

No, I’ll go. I can find her.

It may be too late.


Not if I can help it.

Your father…


[whimpering] Please. Let me go!

Please let me go.

No, don’t do this.

Mother, enough! She’s too young.

A prince protects his kingdom, without hesitation or complaint.

Give me your hand.

I cannot do this. She’s just a child.

You’re weak.

No! Please don’t do this to me!

[Floria screams]

Get off of me!

Let go! Off of me!

Throw her in.

[Floria screams]




[Floria screaming]



[Elodie] I’m coming for you, Flor.

[dragon snarls]

[dragon] My little ones…

They did not let you live.

Nor shall I let Elodie.

Your sister will come for you.


There she is now.

Hello, Floria. Floria, can you hear me?

Wake up!

We need to hurry.



Elodie, you’re alive.

Okay. I’m going to get you out of here.

[screams in pain]

My leg. I hurt it when I fell.

We don’t have time, Flor.


No, no, no. Not yet.

What now?

You have to hide quickly.

What about you?

I must tell her the truth.

Come on.


Where are you hiding?

[Elodie softly] Dragon.

[dragon] That won’t kill me,

but it will make me angry.


I’m angry too.

We have both been lied to.

They said you set upon their village.

That the king came only to defend his people.

He came unprovoked.

I know what they did.

I know they killed your children.

“They”? You!

Your kind, your blood.


My daughters were the last of my line.

So, I will take their daughters until my final breath.

Except you haven’t. We are not their daughters.

More lies.

[Elodie screams]



Now, you will know my daughters’ pain.



[dragon growls softly]

[Elodie yells]


I am not one of them!

I smell it in your blood.



Accept your fate…

as I have mine.

We are to die alone.


I have an army with me.

Every innocent woman whose life was stolen down here.

Your kind were never innocent.

Then go ahead.

Show me your fire.


What are you waiting for?

Burn me.

Burn me!


[rugged breathing]

My sister had this too.

All of us did.

That is how they make us royal.

That is the blood you smell.

They fooled you.

You’ve been killing innocent daughters just like they did.

Then, end it.


I’m through doing what I’m told.

[crowd murmuring]


You must believe me. I haven’t slept a moment since…

Since you tried to kill my sister?

[Henry] I had no choice.

Don’t you dare explain yourself to this…

this commoner.

Is she to be the third?

Princess number three.

She’s the last, and then I’ll be free to marry whoever I…

That’s enough, Henry.

You know nothing of what we’ve endured.

You know nothing of our story.

Take your family

and run.

[man] Come. Let’s go.

I will offer you all one last chance to do the same.


You insolent creature.

You think we ought to fear you now?


Because you somehow managed to escape the dragon?

It’s not me you should fear.

This is the end of your story.

[woman] Run!

[woman] It’s the dragon!

[man] Run!



[sailor 1] Someone give me a hand with this barrel.

[sailor 2] Let’s be sharp there, lads.

[Lady Bayford] You can’t be serious.

[Elodie] But I am.

We’ll run it together.

We’ve got a bounty of supplies.

Enough to get us through this freeze and the next.

Oh, Elodie.

You’re the only person I trust to look after our people, Mother.

Can I help too?


I’m counting on it.

[Floria] Stepmother. Stepmother, come and see this.

[Lady Bayford] Oh, wide heavens!

[sailor] My lady, what course shall we steer?



♪ Love is a burning thing ♪

♪ It makes a fiery ring ♪

♪ Bound by wild desire ♪

♪ I fell into a ring of fire ♪

♪ I fell into a burning ring of fire ♪

♪ I went down, down, down ♪

♪ And the flames went higher ♪

♪ And it burns, burns, burns ♪

♪ The ring of fire ♪

♪ The ring of fire ♪

♪ The taste of love is sweet ♪

♪ When hearts like ours meet ♪

♪ I fell for you like a child ♪

♪ Oh, but the fire went wild ♪

♪ I fell into a burning ring of fire ♪

♪ I went down, down, down ♪

♪ And the flames went higher ♪

♪ And it burns, burns, burns ♪

♪ The ring of fire ♪

♪ The ring of fire ♪


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