Wolf Totem (2015) – Transcript

During China's Cultural Revolution, a young urban student is sent to live with Mongolian herders, where he adopts a wolf cub.
Wolf Totem (2015)

Wolf Totem (Chinese: 狼图腾, French: Le dernier loup, “The Last Wolf”) is a 2015 drama film based on the 2004 Chinese semi-autobiographical novel of the same name by Jiang Rong. Directed by French director Jean-Jacques Annaud, the Chinese-French co-production features a Chinese student who is sent to Inner Mongolia to teach shepherds and instead learns about the wolf population, which is under threat by a government apparatchik.





That was the wrong bus.


MAN: Is this the bus to Wulagai?

CHEN: That was in 1967…

…the second year of the Cultural Revolution.

City students were sent to the countryside.

The Great Wall!


CHEN: The Great Wall. Look!


I volunteered.

I was among the very first to go.

I picked Inner Mongolia…

…wherever that was.

It was so exciting to escape…

…the hard life we had in Beijing…

…during that troubled period.



MAN 1: Don’t forget my books!

MAN 2: Goodbye.

MAN 1: See you.

MAN 3: See you!

Look. So beautiful.

Which is the brigade leader’s yurt?

The one with the wolf totem.


YANG: Hello.

We are students from Beijing.

My name is Yang Ke.


That’s Chen Zhen.


GASMA: Welcome.

BAO: How are you?

How are you?

Are you the leader?


All right.

My name is Bilig.

I am Bao Shungui.

I am the new head of production for your area.

I bring….

Come, come.

These two students…

…will stay here for two years.

You will take care of their living…

…and give them work.

They will teach the kids…

…to read and write Mandarin.

I am going now.


See you.


What’s inside?


Only books.

That’s my son’s yurt.

Yours is over there.

This will be your home.



This is for your protection.

Protection against what?



You city boys…

…what did you learn at school?




YANG: Sorry.

Late again.

Easy, stop.

Give it to me.

Did you see the gazelles?

Hard to miss them.

I wonder what they were running away from.

Do you have your club?

I’ve forgotten it.

Take this one.


Take care.


Whoa. Whoa.



It’s okay.









CHEN: Did the awe that the Mongolian wolf inspired…

…come from a cult deeply entrenched…

…in man’s brain since time immemorial?

My heart filled with gratitude…

…for the secret forces that came to my rescue.

I had the feeling…

…that I’d started to open the door…

…to the spiritual world of the grassland people.


What happened?



You all right?


CHEN: “Riding this vast, deserted land…

…he could not stand walls, barriers or borders.

He’d never surrendered to anyone.

He’d rather die than be taken prisoner.”

What does “never surrendered to anyone” mean?

If a person is not free…

…then he is better off dead.


BILIG: And then?


“His dream was to be free as the wolves.

He would only answer to…

…Great Tengger.

His one and only Master.”

Chen Zhen…

…who do you answer to?

I’m loyal to my parents…

…my superiors, and people I respect.

I hope that includes me.

To be honest…

…there was one instruction I did disobey.

I left the path on the way home.


My horse and I were surrounded by a pack of wolves.

But I remembered that you told me…

…wolves were scared of the sound of steel traps.

So, I banged my stirrups.

You saved me.

You’re not entirely stupid.


Wolves fascinate me.

I am thinking…

…in the spring…

…I would like to capture a cub to study it.



BILIG [WHISPERING]: You want to study wolves?


What do you think they’ll do?

CHEN [WHISPERING]: What are they waiting for?

BILIG: They have been waiting for this moment for months.

The desire to kill tortures them.

But they are not going to waste it because of haste.

How do you think Genghis Khan defeated the great armies of the world…

…with so few mounted warriors?

He learnt the art of war by studying the wolves…

…that you have in front of you.

Wolves are smart and organized.

They work together and obey their leader’s decision.

More than anything else…

…they have patience.

Life is about choosing the moment.

Wolves and Mongols understand that.

CHEN: A’ba.


CHEN: After I escaped from the wolf pack…

…I saw something in the sky.

A smiling face.

Of course.

That was Tengger.

Do you imagine…

…you’d still be alive without Him?

See that?

The gazelles are too full to run fast.

That’s what the wolves were waiting for.


They are on the move.

Look, they are about to attack.


[IN NORMAL VOICE] The gazelles are too full to run fast.

Get your horse.

– Let’s go. – Aren’t we following them?

Too far, too dangerous.

Besides, it will all be over when we get there.

You will see the result tomorrow.

You see…

…the problem for us Mongols…

…is that our history wasn’t written by us…

…but mostly by our enemies.

You speak Mandarin.

Maybe one day you’ll write about who we really are.

I’m a reader.

Not a writer.

There’s a difference.

How do you know? Have you ever tried?



BATU: Look at our son. He’s a real man now.

BILIG: Chen Zhen, follow me.

You understand what the wolves have done.

A great Mongol general did exactly the same thing…

…a few centuries ago.

Mugali drove the cavalry of the great Jin Dynasty into this snowdrift.

They’re probably still buried there.


BILIG: Welcome to the wolves’ fridge.

They store their meat here for their newborns in the spring.

Take your carpet…

…if you don’t want to turn into wolf food.



CHEN: Be careful!

Are you all right?

MAN: Here is one!


BATU: Pull hard, son.

Pull it. Bravo!

GASMA: Pull. Pull.

Pull it hard, my son.

BATU: Pull it hard!


Bayar fished one!

BAYAR: I got one!


CHEN: Let’s go.

BATU: A’ba!

This one is still alive!

Let it go!

If it gets stuck again…

…it will be the will of Tengger!

MAN: Let the live one go!

These gazelles are such pitiful creatures.

Wolves are evil, killing the innocent…

…oblivious to the value of life.


Gazelles are the cruel ones.

They eat all the grass.

Out here, the grass is life.

The Big Life.

All else is Little Life…

…that depends on the Big Life for survival.

If gazelles are so horrible…

…why do you rescue and free them?

This time, the wolves killed too many.

We have to keep enough gazelles for them to eat next year.

If not, they will attack our sheep.


To the Venerable Tribal Leader!

When will you marry a Mongol girl…

…and father a Mongol brat?

Then you’ll be one of us!

Especially our beauty, Gasma!

She howls at night!

MAN: What are you talking about? GASMA: Bullshit!

SHARTSEREN: We can’t sleep well!

LAMJAV: Be quiet, be quiet!

She is…

…the wolf…

…and you are, baa…

…the sheep.

She sticks her teeth in your neck!

BATU: Shut up! You will pay for that!

You’re always talking bullshit!


– I dare you, say that again! SHARTSEREN: I’ll teach you a lesson.

Batu, did I say anything wrong?

Lamjav said the same thing, too.

You have to blame yourself.

You deserve it!

GASMA: You’re such a bad guy!

I dare you, say that again!

You deserve that!

BATU: Help!


A present for you.

Here you are.


YANG: This is Yill. It is my dog.

Yill, you stole my meat.

What’s up?


MAN: Shartseren!

Let’s go!

SHARTSEREN: Let’s stay.

We can take more gazelles tomorrow.

We have enough.

What’s left is the wolves’ share.

Tengger is telling us to leave.


We have more than enough for ourselves.


You’d never see this much meat in the east.

Have you heard of the famine there?

So where’s this big snow lake of yours?

There’s no such place.

120 yuan.


– Let’s go. – Bye.

I don’t have enough money.

How much have you got?



Bring us more gazelles then…

…and you’ll be able to pay for it.


To the grassland.


It is forbidden to say.

Hurry. Dad is waiting for dinner.



MAN: Thank you.


MAN 1: Hurry!

Load them all!

MAN 2: Pack them fast.

Let’s get out of here.

Hurry up.

MAN 3: One, two, three.



Looks like…

…you’ve settled in right here.

We like it here.

Don’t get too comfortable.

You’re here to pass on your knowledge…

…and change these primitives.

BAO: Your brigade has been chosen…

…to look after those horses.

It’s an immense honor.

It shows how much the Superior Level puts its trust in you.

These horses…

…are the cream of the People’s Liberation Army’s stables.

They are a national treasure.

Brigade leader…

…who do you think could look after these horses?

Batu, my son, will be in charge.

He is our best herder.

Shartseren will assist him.

Thank you.


I received this directive…

…to rid the wolves’ lairs of their cubs.

I know…

…it is your custom.

You do it every spring, don’t you?

The wolves’ meat storage has been looted.

They’re already hungry.

That’s not my problem.

Killing the pups…

…will make them vengeful.

They will hit back…

…and hard.

Killing the cubs will reduce their numbers.

BILIG: Fewer wolves…

…will mean more ground squirrels and rabbits…

…which destroy the pastures.

It’s an order.




MAN 1: Shout if you see a live one!

MAN 2: This one is abandoned. No puppy inside.

MAN 3: Over here!

Here is a cub.

BATU: Be careful.

GASMA: So cute.

Here you are.

Bayar, look.

There is another one.

GASMA: It’s so cute.

Don’t kill it.

The wolf puppy belongs to Tengger.

Tengger is calling him.

We are helping him on his way.



It’s all right.

Don’t cry, my son.

His soul will live forever. He will never die.

Tengger, this newborn is Yours.

Tengger, please…

…accept his soul.


I love coming here.


Sixty centuries of history under our feet.


What a madness.

I still don’t understand.

Why did we build that Great Wall in the first place?

For a thousand years…

…millions of Han Chinese…

…were frightened…

…by a handful of unlettered Mongols.

They ride horses.

We go on foot.

They grow on meat. We grow on rice.


Herdsmen versus farmers.

Wolves versus sheep.

A wolf!



CHEN: She dropped the lamb to run faster!

Where has it gone?

Over there!

YANG: For sure, it’s a female who’s protecting her litter.

CHEN: Right!




– Come out! – Come out!

YANG: I’ve got an idea.

CHEN: Where did you get these?

YANG: We’ll smoke her out!

CHEN: There is another exit!



GASMA: Bravo, Yill. Good dog.


They are very lovely.

YANG: Want one?

The little female, I’m keeping for myself.

GASMA: Jealous of your friend?

I am just thinking…

…that she-wolf fooled us.

She hid her babies.

They often do this.

They lead us to an old lair but hide their babies elsewhere.

[WHISPERING] It’s not the right place. We have to look somewhere else.


She runs away this way.

Hey, hey!

What did I tell you?

– Here she comes. – Where?

CHEN: Look, she has black legs.

That’s the one.




Food scraps.

See that?

And cub droppings.

[IN NORMAL VOICE] Don’t touch it.

Taste it.

They are inside.


I am going to get it. I am going to get it.

Take this.


– Leave me alone. – Not without dogs!

The male may be inside.

You moron.

The male never stays with the cubs.

Let’s come back tomorrow.

Chen Zhen.

I have to do it right now while the she-wolf is hunting.

Tie up my foot.


…pull me out.

Give me the flashlight.


The crowbar!


YANG: Chen Zhen.

Don’t go farther.

If the hole collapses, there’s no way for me to save you.

Chen Zhen!

Don’t go farther!

Chen Zhen!

Are you okay?

Come out!

CHEN: It’s okay!



YANG: Chen Zhen!

Can you hear me?!

Chen Zhen!


CHEN: Pull me out!

YANG: Okay! Let me pull you out!


CHEN: Quickly.

Pull me out. I got them!

Be quick. Pull me out!

YANG: You’re insane.


CHEN: Look, you see? So adorable.

I told you that they were here.

YANG: It’s so cute.

LAMJAV: Hi, chaps.

CHEN: How are you?

Everyone says you city guys can’t catch cubs.

But you did great.

You want to sell them to me?

No, no, no.


Let me see.

Excellent fur.

CHEN: It’s cute, isn’t it? – Mm.


It will sell well…

…to make stoles for foreign ladies.

May your soul fly to Tengger!



Give me the other ones.

Give it to me.

Hand me the bag.

– May your soul fly to Tengger! CHEN: Lamjav, no!


Chen Zhen.

It’s for their salvation.

Tengger will grant them eternal life.

You sure you don’t want to sell them to me?


Our brigade needs them to reach our quotas.

Too bad.

Never mind.

Be careful when you skin them. Don’t rip the pelt.

Don’t rip the pelt…

…or it’ll be worthless.

Why didn’t you stop him?

Stop him?

Then we’d have had to kill them ourselves.

Chen Zhen, what are you doing?

Chen Zhen! The rope.

Chen Zhen, are you insane?

How can I pull you out if you don’t have the rope?

I’ve had enough!


Stroke her. Keep stroking her.

Don’t let her see the cub.

Or she will kill it.


Good Yill.


Will it work?

How would you know if you don’t even try?

Your babies are hungry.

Good Yill.

Good. Good wolf.

Yill, don’t move.

Good Yill.

Good wolf. Good.

Nurse your babies.


…you are the best.

Look at him.

A real bandit.

Do you think this is right?

To raise a wolf in a shepherd’s village?

You should have thought about that before we brought the wolf back.


As though this whole mess was all my idea.


My idea.

My idea, all right?

It is too much of a risk to keep it here.

Then what do you suggest?

YANG: We should do what the Mongols do.

Kill it and be done.


Good night…

…public enemy.


WOMAN [ON RADIO]: Anticipated gale force winds coming from Siberia…

…have moved down to the south.

This cold front will bring moderate gales and heavy snowfalls to the border area.

MAN: Shartseren, the day shift needs help!


Hold it tight. The white hair blizzard is coming.

Go quickly to the army horse pasture!

Don’t let anything go wrong!


Give me two winter coats for the day shift.

Come here, kid!

Be a good boy.

Yes, Dad!

Be careful!

Got it!

I’m going!









BATU: Anyone there?!


Where are you?!

Can anyone hear me?!


BATU: Shartseren!

Is it you?

Are Dorj and Qaokt with you?!

SHARTSEREN: What? Aren’t they with you?!

– You’re alone? – Yes.

Where is the day shift?

I can’t find them!

They have no rifles nor flashlights.

They might have gone back to camp.

Forget it. Let’s steady the horses!

SHARTSEREN: My horse is out of control. It fears something.

We may have wolves around.

BATU: Then we need to move quickly.



…let’s gather the horses together to deter the wolves.

BATU: Okay.





Damned wolves know the lake is dead ahead.


BATU: Push the lead horse to the east!

Get them away from the lake!

To the left!







GASMA: Wolf! Help!

Somebody, come!

Chen Zhen, come out! Wolves are coming!


GASMA: Chen Zhen, stay away!

Stand back or the wolf will bite you!



Push the sheep aside…

…to let the dog through.

Here, Bars.

Send Bars over!

CHEN: Gasma!


Let the dog come!

Mama! Mama!

Let me help you!


CHEN: Move!





BATU: Shartseren!

Get up! Get up quickly!



Damn it! Go away!

Go away!

SHARTSEREN: My horse is panicking!

Batu, I can’t control it!


You damn wolves!

Go to hell!

I’ll kill you all!


Stop them!

Stop, you dumb horses!

Don’t go toward the lake!

Stop, please!

Tengger, help me!






BAO: This is a disaster.

Your brigade is to blame!

I will report your gross negligence and disrespect to the leaders.

You’ll pay for this!

Each of you will take responsibility…

…for failing to protect state property!

You, especially!

Deserted your post.

You will be sent to quarantine!

Do you have anything to say?

I lost control of my horse.

It was bitten by a wolf.

And then….

Then I fell off.

I think.

You’re here to work!

Not to think!

Take him away!

We are still missing two herders.

They probably froze to death…

…and were eaten by wolves.

BAO: Incompetent bunch!

GASMA: Shut up!

BILIG: Forget it.

Director Bao Shungui.

I must beg to differ.

Our brigade did the best they could.

Batu fought to his death. He died a hero.

A hero is someone who succeeds in keeping those horses alive.

What kind of hero is he?

What kind of hero is he?

The culprits are those…

…who stole all their gazelles…

…and caused the wolves to starve…

…and take their revenge on us.


Let the authorities decide who the culprits are.

CHEN: I’ll help you. – Leave him.

He chose to get off here.

This place is suitable.


It’s too rocky to bury him here.

Let’s find another place.

BILIG: Mongols don’t bury their dead.

We grasslanders eat meat all our lives…

…for which we kill many creatures.

After we die…

…we donate our meat…

…back to the grassland.


I stitched it up.

Here you are.

Thank you.


…you were very brave.

My man says:

Thank you.

He told me last night in my dream.


Thank you for your dog saving my life.

Who is…

…this meat for?

You were right.

I was jealous.

I took one of Yill’s puppies.

Add millet to it.

Wolf mothers chew meat and bones…

…for their babies.

We use porridge with meat and milk in it…

…to feed little dogs.





The authorities have completed their investigation…

…on the army horse disaster.

All charges…

…are dropped.

The authorities regret…

…the heavy losses your brigade suffered.


…work points…

…will be transferred to his widow.



And as head of production, I entrust Bilig…

…with taking over…

…Batu’s duties.

But I won’t tolerate any more mistakes.

All charges against Batu’s assistant, Shartseren…

…are dropped as well.

Set him free!




Chen Zhen.

Do it now.


Free your wolf cub.

I can’t free him right now.

He has the smell of man now.

The pack may kill him.


YANG: Chen Zhen.


BAO: What’s this?

Open it.

MAN: A wolf cub?

BILIG: Chen Zhen! What’s this?

I confess.

I’m raising it.

This is just an experiment.

Chairman Mao says:

“Study your enemy to defeat him.”

So I thought we should observe wolves more closely.

I say, no!

We could protect our herds…

…by mating him with our dogs.

That can’t work!

BAO: At university…

…I taught the improvement of species.

That is my goal!


Ha-ha-ha. Chen Zhen.

Your idea is good.

You have my approval.

Director Bao…

…the wolves are all over the place.

They heard the cub and will come for it!

Good! Let them come.

Your wolf cub…

…will lure them.

Did you hear me?

Leave it alone.

Get back!

Go away!

LAMJAV: This is madness.

BAO: Lamjav!

Take him away!

LAMJAV: Okay, okay.

BAO: Back!

MAN: Hurry, get back.

BAO: Hurry up!

MAN: Got it!






Brothers, this is Tengger’s will.

Wolves won’t come tonight.

MAN 1: Brothers, let’s go.

MAN 2: Let’s go.

The little wolf doesn’t speak the pack’s language.

MAN 1: Waste of our time. Let’s go.

They won’t attack for a puppy they are not sure about.



Come here.

Are you mad?

Let’s go.

CHEN: A’ba.

Please forgive me.

You captured a god to turn it into a slave.

What you are doing is an affront to our ancestors and to Tengger!

You will pay one day.

And so will this old man!


Don’t call me that.

I was wrong.

You’re right.

I offended you and the Mongols.

Tell me how you want me…

…to dispose of this poor little wolf.



That’s the border.

This is the last piece of Chinese grassland…

…that has not been plowed.

The last untouched lake.

As soon as the lambs are strong enough to make the trip…

…we will set up our summer camp here.

You say I treat my wolf as a slave.

In fact, I am the one who is his servant.

I wait on him like I would a Mongol Prince.

I give him my ration of meat.

I can’t sleep well at night.

I worry about him being cold or sick…

…or bitten by dogs or carried away by an eagle.

Yang Ke says I am the wolf’s slave.

Wolves want the dignity to earn their own meat.

They don’t want to be fed.

They want to kill at the risk of being killed.

They are warriors.

What sort of warrior will he be…

…if you take his pride away?

If you forbid him to kill?

If you teach him to fear death?


I think this is a very good place…

…for the wolf cub to live.

Give me a few weeks…

…to help him grow stronger.

When we come here…

…I will set him free.

I promise.

As the old saying goes:

“It’s easier to climb on the tiger’s back than to get off it.”

Chen Zhen.

What’s going on?

Just a second!

What are you doing?

I’m getting angry.

You can’t stay here, you know.

Dogs and eagles will eat you.


Don’t you understand?

Don’t be silly!

You are smart.

We are going to a great new place.

You’ll be happy there.

Come on.

Come on.

You have no choice!

I’m angry with you now!

Hurry up!


Let’s go!




Stop the carts.

YANG: What’s going on?

Let him go, for God’s sake.

Once and for all!

How can he survive if I let him go?

He can’t hunt.

What will he eat?

Will the wolves accept him?

I have to take care of him!

What are you doing?

Are you crazy?!

– What’s wrong? – We need dry dung!

For the journey.

How are we going to cook?

I’ll take care of it.

I’ll pick up more on the way.

Pick up more?

What if it rains?

What are you thinking? Let him go!

I’ve had enough!

This is my wolf, not your wolf!

I am the one who loves him!

You don’t understand. Go away!

Go away!






How long have you been not eating your meat?

I don’t need to eat meat.

Is he sick?

He is punishing me.


CHEN: Yang Ke!


Behind this mountain is the Swan Lake.

This is the place I told you about…

…that looks like heaven.


Look at the swans.

There. Do you see it?




MAN: Here come the nomads.

BAO: Bilig!


I didn’t think you would come here, too!

Did you see?

These people will be your new neighbors.

Just like me.

They’re Mongols from the east. Ha-ha-ha.

Very experienced in farming and agriculture.

They come here…

…because they’ve ruined their own land.

Our soil is too thin.

It’s not suited for plowing.

BAO: Old Bilig.

There are people starving down east.

They have no choice…

…but to make use of land like this one.


Look, we’ll build a school here.

A dispensary there.

We will use traps and poison…

…to eradicate all toxic plants.

Pests, mosquitoes…


…and wolves, of course.


YANG: Stop shooting!

Stop shooting!

BILIG: Let’s find somewhere else to settle down.



The swans are so beautiful!

Stop the shooting.

I beg of you.

Have you seen Swan Lake?

What are you doing?!

Want to run away?!


Don’t tell me this one was killed by an eagle, too.


By lightning, perhaps?

Do you know what our parents would do…

…for a piece of meat like that in Beijing?




Little wolf, little wolf, time to eat!

Time to eat!

Grow up quickly.


You have to become stronger.

Stronger than foxes, eagles, and wild wolves.

Got it?

Watch out!


See that?

Wolf trap.

Remember it when you’re free.

Get it?

Don’t be afraid.

You know you have to learn how to swim.

You are a real wolf.

Come on.



CHEN: In the grassland, the mosquito season came.

As Bilig A’ba predicted…

…mosquitoes that survived the winter in marmot holes…

…invaded the grassland…


…in larger numbers than ever.

Cattle withered.


Unable to hunt…

…starving and scraggy…

…wolves moved closer to populated areas.

They preyed on cattle.

The new settlers retaliated.


CHEN: Where are you going?


Where are you taking me?


What’s that?

What’s that smell that makes you so happy?



What’s up with you?


Come back!

I said come back! Did you hear me?


Come back!


Come back!


You monster!

How dare you bite me?!

Sorry. I am wrong.


You are a real Mongolian wolf.

I am proud of you.

GASMA: What happened?


Your wolf did this?

You are mad!

It’s okay.

Just a scratch.

I told you…

…they have poison in their teeth!

They don’t.

That’s just superstition.

You don’t get it.

How do you think Wuli lost his leg?

Or Bayin, his arm?

It’s like a snake’s bite.

Your arm will fester and they will cut it off.

Without an injection, you will die.

I don’t need your help.

Where can I get an injection?

At the hospital.

But all those new settlers are using everything up.

Maybe there is nothing left.

It will hurt a bit.

You have to be careful.

Does Batu…

…still come in your dreams?


Is he happier now?


What does he want?

None of your business.

I know one thing.

He wants you to remarry.

Nothing strange about that.

His son needs a father.

His woman needs a man.

She doesn’t.

She’s too busy.

He wants you to choose me.

Why would he want me to choose you?

You are a Han student.

Because he knows I love you.

You know it as well.

Maybe you feel the same.


Stop it!

You won’t stay.

Who said I won’t stay?

Your home is Beijing.

There is no future for the two of us. Everybody knows how these things end.

They don’t know me.

This is my real home.

My life before was meaningless.

What can I do to make you trust me?

There is no need.

My new man has been chosen.

By whom?

By you?

He is Bao Shungui’s brother.

Have you already met him?

Have you?

His wife’s dead.

He is a peasant.

A Mongol from the east.

It will help national unity.


If you want national unity, marry me!

It’s ridiculous! Does A’ba know?

I am going to ask A’ba!

He gave his approval.

He said we should keep up with the times.




BOY: Lock them in the sheep pen and we can go home.


MAN: Lock up the sheep!

Seal the door. There are wolves outside!

Little wolf, little wolf, time to eat!


Eat the bowl while you’re at it.


I am off to my shift.

Could you look after the little wolf?

Make sure that no one bothers him, okay?


See you later.


Hurry up!

Hurry up!

Hurry up!


BOY 1: I want to see the wolf.

No, you can’t.

BOY 1: Let me go inside. I will give you two candies.

Here you are.

BOY 2: What does this mean? BOY 1: Well?

Can’t open it.

Okay, no touching.

BOY 3: Let’s go inside.

Do you understand?

Let me go first!


BAYER: Leave him alone!

Don’t pull the chain!

He will bite you!


Stay away.

There may be either a bomb or poison.

Yang Ke!

Yang Ke!

Why is he here so early?

How can I know?

YANG: I am here! CHEN: What are you doing?

Just had a nap. I am coming!

Stay here. I will deal with him.


Anyone there?!


Your mother!

No, it’s not.

Hide yourself anyway!

Crawl. Crawl.

WOMAN: Yang Ke, where is my belt?

GASMA: Bayar has been bitten!

Bayar has been bitten!

YANG: By what?

Your stupid friend’s wolf!

Hurry up! Come with me!

Hurry up!

DOCTOR: We can’t sew up his wounds.

Better to leave them open.

The last shot of penicillin and rabies vaccine we had…

…we gave it to you.

Without it, it’s going to be touch and go.

You can wait here.


I am sorry.


Get out.


If anything bad happens to my son…

…I will kill your wolf…

…then kill myself.

Nurse, is the doctor here?

Sit and wait.

It’s urgent!

For the others, too. Just wait.



– Doctor! – What are you shouting for?!

CHEN: Doctor!

NURSE: Stop shouting. – Are you the doctor?

– Stop shouting. – Are you the doctor or not?!

Don’t you see the operating room?

CHEN: Where is the doctor?

NURSE: Go sit there and wait. CHEN: Doctor!

I told you to go there to wait!

MAN: Whose horse is eating the tree?

Hey, your horse! Go look after your horse!

What are you doing? Wait your turn!

Doctor, I need penicillin.


What penicillin?

I don’t have penicillin.

Don’t go in there!

Don’t go in there!

Why do you need penicillin?

A child has been bitten by a wolf.

The doctor in the county-town said that without penicillin…

…the wounds will get infected and he will die!

I rode for 20 hours to get here!

Do you have penicillin here?!


Where is the penicillin?

Stop that!

You won’t find penicillin here!

All right.

Wolf teeth, wolf claws…


…wolf heart, wolf kidney.

Can you get me those things?

Then we could make a deal.

I just want penicillin.

Then it’s a deal.

Give me penicillin!






MAN 1: Wolves are attacking the sheep pen!


MAN 2: Let’s go kill the wolves!




Chen Zhen. Come out!



Chen Zhen!

Chen Zhen, come out!

MAN 1: Is it the right place?

Anyone there?

Chen Zhen!

Come out!

YANG: What are you doing?!

MAN 2: Come out!

What is going on here?!

Come out!

Where is your wolf-loving friend?

He is not here. He went to town!

That was five days ago!

Why’s he not back?

I don’t know!

There was an emergency!

It is your wolf cub who called the flying wolves to attack!

What flying wolf?!

Wolves don’t fly!

They do! My grandpa saw it with his own eyes!

That’s right!

– It’s not here. MAN 3: Then where is it?

Tell me the truth.

Where did you hide the wolf cub?

He’s on his chain!


MAN 4: Let’s go!

YANG: He’s been on his chain!


LAMJAV: You damn wolf!

YANG: Get away from it! Drop the chain!

MAN 1: Move, move your ass!

YANG: Don’t beat it! MAN 2: Beat the wolf! Beat the wolf!


CHEN: Stop!

BAO: What is going on here?!

LAMJAV: I’ll kill you!

BAO: What’s all this?!

Let it go!

MAN 3: Wolves massacred our sheep!

BAO: Idiots!

It’s the wild wolves that are your problem!

And I am here…

…with the solution!

Are you all right?

BAO: Where is Bilig?

He is not well. He’s been injured.



Tell me…

…what happened to you.

Chen Zhen.

It’s important to keep one’s appointment.

I have heard Tengger a lot recently.

He’s calling me.

BAO: Don’t be silly.

We are going to hunt wolves.

Revenge for you.

Your wounds will be recovered soon.


Chen Zhen.

I have to talk to you.

You are the wolf expert now.

Follow me.

Let’s go!


CHEN: It is okay.

Don’t be afraid.

The bad guys are gone…


They won’t bother you anymore.

I’ll be right back.



BAO: Get in.

MAN 1: The grass is too tall here.

Why did you bring us here?

Go north, that way.

Did you do it on purpose…

…to stop us finding the wolves?

Most of them have already been killed.

Our Jeeps make too much noise anyway.

Maybe we should–

Look! On the hillside to the left! Two wolves, over there!

Try to follow them!

Stay parallel!

MAN 2: Ready.




Two down.

It is just a start.

Let’s go.

Go fast! Go!


There! Take the pack downslope.




LAMJAV: This is an old couple. They won’t go far.

The wolf jumped.

What the–?

Their fur is worthless.

MAN: Better to die than to get skinned.

Mom, is it healing?

It’s all right. It’s fine.

Mom, then why are you crying?


Bring the jerry can.

MAN: Bartel, come.

Block their escape to the west.

This way.

Don’t let them escape.


Spill the fuel.

CHEN: Stop!


Fire is forbidden in the steppe!

So are wolves.

The nomads will hate you.

They hate me anyway.

Even more so…

…since I helped you…

…keep your wolf.

Being a leader…

…is not about being liked.

Sometimes, you have to obey orders…

…that your heart resents.


Save your bullet. Their fur is worthless anyway.


The pack leader.


LAMJAV: Don’t shoot!

Don’t shoot!

We need his fur intact…

…without holes!

Try to exhaust it!

Good, good.

I need it alive. Don’t be rushed.



Go faster!

No shooting!

How long has it been running?

DRIVER: About 38 kilometers.


It will be done soon.

Now what?

Chen Zhen.

Chen Zhen, come back.

Have you lost your mind?

Chen Zhen.

Chen Zhen!

Come back!

You spared my life a year ago.

Go away.


They can’t follow you…

…in those rocks.

Go away.


Leave it here.

He belongs to Tengger.

Do what he says.

I fed your wolf.

– His appetite is good. – Let’s unload these dead wolves.

How is Bayar?


But A’ba is not good.



The wolves are all dead.


Not all of them.

Yours is still alive.

CHEN: I promised A’ba…

…I’d set the cub free.

The hunt is over.

It’s the best time of the year.

He’ll be safe…

…in the northern range mountains.

I have to do it.

Because I love him.

But I lack courage.

Little wolf, little wolf, time to eat!

I’m sorry.

I’m late today.

Little wolf.

Little wolf?


Little wolf!

Little wolf!

Where’s little wolf?

I returned him…

…to the grassland.

You killed him?

I should have.

But I couldn’t.

I freed it.

You had no right!

He is my wolf!

He is Tengger’s wolf.

I owed Him a life.


Two, actually.

Bayar is saved, then.

Almost healed.

It’s a miracle.

It’s the power of modern medicine.

It’s the future.

You Han people….


CHEN: With Bilig’s death…

…it was the grassland I knew and I loved that was dying.

Time had come for me…

…to become again…

…the young city man I had never ceased to be.


Little wolf!

Little wolf!


The memory of the little wolf haunted Chen Zhen forever.

He devoted his life to writing a book…

…in the hope that the wolves’ long-songs will be heard once again…

…over the restored splendor of Mongolia’s grassland.


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