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Ninth Gate The (2000)

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It's an impressive collection.
You have some very rare editions.
Sure you want to sell them?
They're no use to Father,
not since he's been this way.
His library was his whole world,
now it's just a painful memory.
Unbearably painful.
I understand.
Well...
At a rough preliminary estimate, you have a collection here
worth around $600,000.
600,000?!
Yes, or thereabouts.
I've picked out one or two volumes that merit special attention.
This Persiles, for example, is important.
I'd hang on to that. It will never depreciate.
- Valuable? - Very valuable.
As for this Hypnerotomachia di Polifilo,
by Colonna, Venice, 1545, erm...
I'm sure I could find you a buyer.
But I wouldn't let the rest go for less than 500,000.
Under any circumstances.
It may take a month to place them,
so in the meantime, be patient.
- A month? - Yes, or two.
It depends on how much of a hurry you're in. More hurry, less money.
0f course.
That's my advice, anyway.
I'm sure you wouldn't want to rush things,
but feel free to consult another expert.
Any questions, you know where to reach me.
Incidentally, this four-volume edition of Don Quixote
is quite nice but not particularly valuable.
Now, I could...
take it off your hands...
right away.
How much were you thinking of?
I couldn't go more than 4,000. 4,200 tops.
Fine.
- You here? - Witkin.
- You didn't waste much time. - There's a fortune in there.
You're a vulture, Corso.
Who isn't in our business?
- You'd stoop to anything. - You bet I would.
Unscrupulous. Thoroughly unscrupulous.
Happy hunting.
I just spoke to Witkin.
He's spitting blood.
Really? What's his problem?
He said you're a double-dealing, money-grubbing bastard.
Thought he had that deal sewn up.
Said you "queered" his pitch.
He should have been quicker.
May I?
Sure.
He said your evaluation was way over the top.
Had those people coming out in a rash.
Now they're asking twice what those books are worth.
Face it, you screwed him. That's what it's called.
That's what it's called.
He also said that you snatched the Don Qui...
You bought a Don Quixote 1780,
all four volumes?
Son of a bitch!
Fantastic. Fantastic. You are the best.
Your Swiss client, would he still be interested?
I'll have Witkin on my ass, I told him I had no part in this.
Except ten per cent.
Twenty per cent. The Swiss was my client.
No deal.
Fifteen, for my children's sake.
- You don't have any. - I'm still young.
Ten.
How you doin', how about a couple of bucks?
Not today, not today.
In the present context, however...
...and earlier, in 1580, in De la DEmonomanie des Sorciers
by the Frenchman Jean Bodin.
Bodin was probably the first
to attempt to establish a system,
if the term "system" may be applied to the Middle Ages,
for classifying evil.
In Bodin, we find one of the first definitions of the word "witch"
and I quote, "A witch is a person who,
"though cognisant of the laws of God,
"endeavours to act through the medium of a pact with the devil."
To assist them in their work, many witches kept familiars,
that is to say, creatures such as cats or toads,
in which supernatural spirits or demons were thought to reside.
For those of you who wish to delve more deeply
into the subject of witchcraft,
a great deal of relevant information may be found in the following works.
Nicolas REmy's Demonolatria Libri,
and Compendium Maleficarum by Francesco Maria Guazzo.
I see you were stimulated by my talk, Mr Corso.
Did I snore?
It's nice of you to ask. No, not that I noticed.
Shall we go?
Don't you sleep nights?
- Like a baby. - Strange.
I'd have bet a Gutenberg Bible
you spend half the night with your eyes peeled.
You're one of those lean, hungry types
that put the wind up Julius Caesar.
Men who stab their friends in the back.
Not, I suspect, that you have many friends, do you?
Your kind seldom does.
That makes two of us.
You're right, of course. Your friendships don't concern me.
0ur relations have always been commercial
and that's the way I like it.
The professional and the personal should be exclusive.
I'm here to do business, not shoot the breeze.
If you want to expound your philosophies, write another book.
You don't like me, do you?
I don't have to. You're a client and you pay well.
You're privileged, Mr Corso.
Very few people ever set foot in here.
This is my private collection.
Some bibliophiles specialise in Gothic novels,
others in books of hours.
All my own rare editions have the same protagonist.
The devil.
- May I take a look? - Yes. It's why I brought you here.
Beautiful, aren't they?
The soft sheen, the superb gilding.
Not to mention the centuries of wisdom they contain.
I know people who would kill for a collection like this.
Vias Diaboli.
You'll never see as many books on the subject anywhere else.
They're the rarest, choicest editions in existence.
It's taken me a lifetime to assemble them.
0nly the supreme masterpiece was missing. Come.
The Nine Gates in the Kingdom of Shadows.
- You're familiar with it? - Yes. Venice, 1666.
The author and printer, Aristide Torchia,
was burned by the Holy Inquisition, together with all his works.
0nly three copies survived.
0ne.
The catalogue lists three copies. Fargas, the Kessler and the Telfer.
You know your business, but you're mistaken.
- 0nly one is authentic. - Well, three are known.
That's the trouble.
Where'd you get it?
I bought it from Telfer.
- Telfer? - Yes, he finally sold it to me.
The day before he killed himself.
That was good timing.
Silentium est aureum.
"Silence is golden."
Precisely.
Ever heard of the Delomelanicon?
I've heard of it. It's a myth, isn't it?
A book reputed to have been written by Satan.
No myth. That book existed.
Torchia actually acquired it.
The engravings you are now admiring were adapted by Torchia
from the Delomelanicon.
They form a kind of Satanic riddle.
Correctly interpreted with the aid of the original text,
they're reputed to conjure up the Prince of Darkness in person.
You don't say?
Are you a religious man, Mr Corso?
I mean, do you believe in the supernatural?
I believe in my percentage.
Don't you get dizzy standing there?
What is it that you want from me, Balkan?
I want you to go to Europe and investigate.
The other two copies are in Portugal and France.
Compare them with mine - every page, every engraving,
the binding, everything.
I'm convinced only one is authentic.
That could be expensive.
That's to get you started. Spend what you need.
What if I find your copy's a forgery?
- It's quite possible. - Really?
It doesn't appear to be.
Even the paper sounds kosher.
Even so... there's something wrong.
The devil won't show up?
If all three copies are bogus or incomplete, your work will be done.
But if one is genuine, I'll finance you further.
I want you to get it for me. At all costs.
- Never mind how. - "Never mind how" sounds illegal.
It wouldn't be your first time.
- Not that illegal. - Hence the size of the cheque.
Do a good job, I'll double it.
There's got to be something wrong if you're letting it out of your hands.
I have faith in you, Mr Corso.
Nothing is more reliable
than a man whose loyalty can be bought for hard cash.
Good morning. I'm Dean Corso.
I'm terribly sorry to disturb you at a time like this.
It would be very helpful...
if you could tell me what you know about this book.
- Isn't this one of my husband's? - Right.
He recently sold it to a client of mine.
- I'm trying to authenticate it. - He sold it, you say?
How strange. This was one of his most treasured possessions.
- He never mentioned the sale? - No. It's news to me.
- Who bought it? - A private collector.
May I know his name?
I'm afraid that's confidential.
- I suppose he has a bill of sale? - No problem there.
Is this your job? Authenticating rare books?
And tracking them down, yes.
You're a book detective.
Kind of.
Do you recall when and where your husband acquired this book?
In Spain,
when we were vacationing at Toledo.
Andrew got very excited. He paid a great deal of money for it.
- He was a fanatical collector. - So I gather.
I'll show you.
It's impressive.
Andrew used to spend many hours in here.
- Too many.
Did he ever try it out?
I don't understand.
The book, did he use it to perform some kind of ritual
intended to produce a supernatural effect?
Are you serious?
Yes, absolutely.
Andrew was a trifle eccentric, Mr Corso,
but he wasn't insane.
It's true he'd been acting...
strangely, those last few days.
He shut himself in here, seldom emerged except for meals.
That morning I was awoken... by the screams of the maid.
He'd hanged himself.
Whatever he was up to, I certainly can't see him chanting mumbo jumbo
or trying to raise the dead.
The devil, Mrs Telfer.
This book is designed to raise the devil.
Sic luceat lux.
"Thus did the light shine."
Son of a bitch, where did you get this?
Balkan, wants me to research it.
Balkan owns a Nine Gates?
Acquired from the late Andrew Telfer.
Trust Balkan. What does he need you for? Does he plan to sell it?
He wants me to compare it
with the other surviving copies which are in Portugal and France.
I'm off to Europe.
Compare it?
Yeah. 0nly one of the three's authentic, he says.
This looks genuine enough.
Christ, it's gotta be worth a million.
Take care of it.
That's why I'm here. I need you to stash it for me.
- Cos I'm starting to see things. - Like what?
Uninvited visitors, unfamiliar faces.
I don't trust anyone, not even Balkan.
I'm not even sure I trust you.
You know I wouldn't screw you unless there was a good reason.
Money, women, business... 0ther than that you can relax.
I'll pick it up on my way to the airport.
Sure.
These engravings are terrific.
0r horrific, whichever.
Sensational. Absolutely sensational.
- May I come in? - Mm-hm.
Please, sit down.
- I've come to talk business. - Mm-hm.
Yesterday, when you came to see me about that book,
I was too surprised to react as I should have done.
It was one of Andrew's favourites.
So you said.
I'd like to get it back.
- That could be a problem. - It all depends.
- 0n what? - 0n you.
I don't understand, the book is not mine.
You work for money, I take it?
- What else? - I have a great deal of money.
I'm very happy for you.
Stage a theft. I imagine your client is well insured.
- I'm a professional. - A professional mercenary.
You work for the highest bidder.
- I make a living. - I could throw in a bonus.
- This has happened before someplace. - In the movies.
She had an automatic in her stocking.
No automatic.
- Would you like a drink? - Why not?
0K, where is it?
Where's what?
Don't fuck with me!
I thought I already did.
0w!
Ahh... Ah! Wait, wait!
Take it easy!
'You have reached Bernie's Rare Books,
'please leave a message after the tone.'
Bernie... are you there?
Pick up.
Bernie!
Give me a minute, I won't be long.
You can take me on to Kennedy.
No problem, sir.
Bernie?
Bernie!
0h, Jesus!
Jesus Christ...
Bernie...
No problem?
Stop. Stop at that phone booth. Pull over.
No problem, sir.
'He isn't available. Who's calling? '
- Dean Corso. - 'Any message? '
- I have to talk with him at once. - 'I'm afraid he's in transit.'
'Lf you leave your number I'll have him return.'
No, I am in a phone booth. It's an emergency.
I have to speak with him right now.
Right now, you hear me? Right now.
'0ne moment.'
- 'Are you there, Mr Corso? ' - Yes.
'I'll put you through.'
- 'What have you got? ' - More than I bargained for.
- 'What do you mean? ' - I mean I quit.
I'll return the book. Where are you?
'I'm disappointed, Mr Corso. You've never let me down before.'
Well, this is different.
Remember Bernie Armstein?
- 'Armstein? ' - Yeah.
I gave him your book to stash for me. Now he's dead. Murdered.
- 'Because of the book? ' - What else?
'I never said it would be easy. If it's a question of money... '
It isn't the money, I want out.
'This matter means a great deal to me. I'm not an ungenerous man.
'Proceed as arranged.
- 'Tack another zero onto your fee.'
Hey, where are you?
Balkan?
Balkan?!
- You speak English? - Yes, I do.
I would like to get your opinion on this.
What a habit for a bookbinder.
A Nine Gates, superb edition.
Very rare. The Telfer copy.
- Yes. You used to own it, right? - Used to.
We sold it when the opportunity presented itself.
- It was too good... - To miss. An excellent sale.
An excellent buy. Impeccable condition.
Impeccable. Are you the present owner?
No, a client of mine.
I would never have believed she would part with it.
- She? - Mrs Telfer.
Uh-huh.
I understood that Mr Telfer bought it.
He paid for it.
Mrs Telfer made him buy it.
- He didn't seem particularly... - Interested.
An exceptional specimen.
- Could it be a forgery? - Forgery? Hear that, Pablo?
I thought you were a professional. You speak too lightly of forgeries.
- Far too lightly. - Forging a book is very expensive.
Paper of the period, right inks... Too expensive to be profitable.
- Still, it can be done. - 0f course.
It requires a great skill, but yes.
- Could that be the case here? - What makes you ask?
My client wishes to satisfy himself on the book's authenticity.
Boris Balkan of New York.
- 0Id books have their own destiny. - And their own life.
Mr Balkan is a celebrated collector.
He's no fool. He must know this book is authentic.
We know it, we've had this book for years.
- Many years. - Ample opportunity to study it.
The painting, binding,
a magnificent example of 17th century Venetian craftsmanship.
Finest paper, resistant to the passage of time.
None of your modern wood pulp.
Watermarks, ink, typefaces.
If this is a forgery or a copy with missing pages restored,
- it's the work of a master. - A master.
Yes. Have you studied the engravings? They seem to have some...
- underlying significance. - 0f course.
For example, this one could be interpreted as a warning.
Venture too far, it says, and danger will descend on you from above.
These books often contain little puzzles.
Especially with such a collaborator.
Collaborator?
You have not proceeded far in your research.
Look close, and you see?
0nly six of the nine engravings were signed by Aristide Torchia.
Yes, and the other three?
This is one of them.
L-C-F.
Who was LCF?
Think.
Lucifer?
Very perceptive of you, signor.
Torchia was burnt alive because he wrote this book
in collaboration with someone else.
You can't honestly believe...
The man who wrote this book saw an alliance with the devil
and went to the stake for it.
Even Hell has its heroes, signor.
- I've seen you before. - Have you?
- Yes. - Are you travelling in this car?
The next one.
The sleeper. I travel on the cheap.
You a student?
Something like that.
I like trains.
- Trains I'm on? - Just trains.
What's your name?
Guess.
- Green-eyes? - That'll do.
- What's yours? - Corso.
Strange name.
Italian. It means "run".
You don't look like a runner to me.
More the quiet type.
Well, give my regards to Balkan.
Tell him I'm doing my best.
- Balkan? - Never mind.
See you around.
Maybe?
I wouldn't be surprised.
Sí?
Dean Corso, Mr Fargas.
Corso...? 0h, yes. Please, come in.
Thank you.
Please...
Home, sweet home.
You won't say no to a brandy, I take it?
Thank you very much.
Thank you.
What handsome glasses.
They're the only ones I have left.
Hmm, must have been a beautiful place.
It was. But old families are like ancient civilisations.
They wither and die.
There they are, eight hundred and thirty-four of them.
A pity you didn't see them in better times.
I used to have 5,000.
But these are the survivors.
So this is the Fargas collection?
Not quite as I imagined it, I must say.
C'est la vie, my friend.
But I keep them in perfect condition, safe from damp, light, heat, rats.
I dust and air them every day.
These are the occult. What do you think?
Not bad.
Not bad indeed. At least ten are extremely rare.
Here, Plancy's Dictionnaire Infernal.
First edition, 1844.
Leonardo Fioravantis' Compendi di Secreti, 1571.
And there it is,
in perfect condition.
It has travelled the world for three and a half centuries
but might have been printed yesterday.
Is it in order? You haven't detected anything unusual?
No, the text is complete, engravings too.
Nine, plus the title page, as the catalogue states,
like the Kessler in Paris and the Telfer in New York.
Yes. It isn't the Telfer any more. Telfer killed himself.
But he sold his copy to Boris Balkan first.
0h, Balkan... If he sets his heart on a book, no price is too high.
Not that I would ever sell this one. Not at any price.
It's, er...
It's strange that he should have sent you here if he already had...
You have it here?
May I see it?
Ahh, superb.
Beautiful.
Identical.
Two of the only three to escape the flames,
reunited for the first time in over three centuries.
Ahh, yes...
Look at this slight imperfection here.
The damaged "s", the same type, the same impression.
Incredible.
And if it weren't for this slight discolouration on the back of yours,
no one could tell them apart.
If you don't mind, I'd like to stay for a while
and examine them in detail.
- What are you looking for, Mr Corso? - I'm not quite sure.
Some books are dangerous. Not to be opened with impunity.
That's very true.
I'll be damned.
Hello, again. You didn't say you were coming here.
Neither did you.
- What are you doing? - Reading.
I can see that.
And bumping into people. Unexpectedly.
Yes, unexpectedly's right.
Are you on a business trip? Is that why you always carry that thing?
- Is this part of your course? - My course?
Winning Friends And Influencing People.
You said you were a student.
Did I? So I am, in a way.
I like books. Do you?
You been travelling long?
A while.
- Ever travel by motorbike? - Signor?
- Excuse me, signor, telefono. - Me? You're sure?
Sí, signor. Sí, signor.
Yes?
'Mr Corso? '
- My God, how'd you find me? - 'Made any progress? '
- Yeah, you could call it that. - 'Well? '
I can't talk, I'm in the lobby. Let me call you back. Where are you?
'Never mind that, get them to transfer it to your room.'
0h, right. Signor? Signor, pardon me.
- Could you send this to my room? - Yes, sir.
You still there?
- 'Yes.' - All right.
I've examined the Fargas copy, it looks authentic enough.
It's like yours, but there are discrepancies.
'Discrepancies? '
The engravings, they're not identical.
Things like keys in different hands,
doorways open in one copy and bricked up in the other.
- And another thing. - 'Yes? Yes, go on.'
The ones that differ aren't signed Torchia.
They're signed "LCF".
- You still there? - 'LCF'?
Listen, where are you anyway?
'I must have that copy, Mr Corso. Get it for me.'
The old man wouldn't sell it to save his life. He said as much.
'Did he? '
Hello? Hello?!
Just a minute!
Yeah?
- W-what time is it? - Early, but you have to go.
Go? Go where?
- Fargas' place. - I've seen Fargas.
- You should see him again. - Is this some kind of joke?
- What do you know about Fargas? - Get dressed. I'll wait outside.
- Don't bother. He isn't there.
0h, really? Then where is he?
0ver there.
God Almighty.
Wanna get inside?
I had thought about it, yes.
You wait here.
Shit.
Well? Did you find it?
You know, it's come to my attention that you know too goddam much.
- Why do you keep following me? - Don't waste time asking questions.
There's a flight to Paris at noon.
- We should just make it. - "We"?
There are two of us.
What happened back there?
The old man caught someone stealing, I guess.
- What do you guess happened to him? - He drowned.
- With help from who? - He's dead, who cares?
I do. I could easily wind up the same way.
Not with me around to look after you.
0h, I see, you're my guardian angel
If you say so.
Someone's playing a game with me.
0f course, you're part of it.
And you're getting to like it.
Gardez la monnaie.
Hello, Gruber.
Hello, Mr Corso. Delighted to see you again.
We don't have any vacancies but...
I'm sure I can organise something.
Thank you very much.
Good afternoon.
I'm Dean Corso, I have an appointment with Baroness Kessler?
This way.
You have 30 minutes.
- Yes? - Monsieur Corso.
0h, yes, Mr Corso. Come in.
I've heard a great deal about you.
0h. Nothing good, I hope?
You hope right. Merci, Simone.
Well, I'm reassured, Baroness.
In my trade to be spoken well of can be professionally disastrous.
My God...
Yes, there it is. The Kessler collection.
I know your catalogue almost by heart.
Strange we haven't met before. Your name is a byword among dealers.
But I imagine you know your own reputation better than I do.
It does keep the wolf from the door. I'm sorry, were you doing something?
My latest work, The Devil: History & Myth.
A kind of biography. It will be published early next year.
- Why the devil? - I saw him one day.
I was 15 and I saw him as plain as I see you now.
It was love at first sight.
300 years ago you'd have been burned at the stake for that.
300 years ago I wouldn't have said it.
Nor would I have made a million by writing about it.
Yeah.
What do you wish to discuss, Mr Corso?
There's a book I'd like to examine,
The Book of the Nine Gates of the Kingdom of Shadows?
The Nine Gates? An interesting work.
Everyone's been asking lately.
- Is that so? - Follow me.
You truly believe in the devil, Baroness?
Enough to devote my life and my library to him.
Not to mention many years of work.
Don't you?
Almost.
This book demands a certain amount of faith.
I'm afraid my faith is in short supply these days.
I know this work extremely well. I've studied it for years.
- Any doubts about its authenticity? - None whatsoever.
- Sure? - My knowledge of it is profound.
I wrote a biography of its author.
I've read it, Aristide Torchia, the Devil's Apprentice.
A courageous man.
He died for the sake of this book in 1667.
While studying in Prague he acquired a copy of the dread Delomelanicon.
This is Torchia's adaptation of that work,
which was written by Lucifer himself.
After they burned him at the stake,
a secret society was founded
to perpetuate its memory and preserve its secrets.
The 0rder of the Silver Serpent.
A sect?
A kind of witches' coven.
For centuries they have met to read this book
and worship the Prince of Darkness.
Today they have degenerated into a social club
for bored millionaires and celebrities
who use its meetings as an excuse to indulge their jaded sexual appetites.
I myself belonged to the order.
Years ago.
But time is too precious at my age.
Besides, my orgy days are over.
I told them to go to the devil.
You mean it's all about sex or...?
0f course not. They're under the illusion that they owe their success
to membership in the order.
- Do they still meet? - Every year.
0n the anniversary of Torchia's death. They'll be meeting very soon.
- And they read from this book? - Not this one.
I took mine back when Liana Telfer acquired the one in Toledo.
Victor Fargas is a non-believer, he's always refused to participate,
so naturally they use the Telfer copy,
not that it has ever worked.
- Did Andrew Telfer ever take part? - Telfer?! No, no.
That creature, Liana, married him for his money.
She comes from an old, aristocratic French family, the Saint-Martins,
but they were penniless
so Liana used his dollars to restore her chateau
and buy the Nine Gates.
If he finds out what his wife gets up to,
he'll probably kill himself.
Funny you should say that, he hanged himself last week.
Who exactly are you working for, Mr Corso?
The name is irrelevant, I'm simply trying to authenticate his copy,
the one that Telfer sold him before he died.
How stupid of me, I should have guessed.
You've outstayed your welcome, Mr Corso.
I was hoping to examine your copy in detail.
Certainly not!
Tell your client, who can only be Boris Balkan, to examine it himself,
if he dares.
Tell him not to send any more wolves in sheep's clothing.
And now, kindly leave.
I'm... sorry if I've troubled you. Thank you very much for your time.
You don't know what you're getting into, Mr Corso.
Get out before it's too late.
I'm afraid it already is, Baroness. Good day.
They're broken.
You should be more careful.
I need a favour, Gruber.
- Certainly, Mr Corso. - Liana Telfer.
Maiden name, de Saint-Martin.
40-ish, brunette, dishy.
Probably accompanied by, um...
a black gentleman with...
closely-cropped platinum blond hair and a moustache.
I want to know if they're staying here in Paris.
- Take a little time. - Yes, of course.
Start with five-stars, that's your best bet.
Are you feeling all right?
I've felt better, Gruber, thanks.
Let me know if you locate them.
Put this... against the back of your neck.
You were really great down there by the river.
I haven't thanked you for that.
All right. Look.
I think it's time you told me what's going on.
Someone's after your book.
No kidding! And where do you fit into it?
Yeah?
May I take it in reception, please?
I'll be right down.
- Yes? - 'Anything new? '
0h, his master's voice again.
Not much, except that someone's tried to take my life a couple of times.
- '0h.' - 0h, yes. Fargas has been murdered.
'0h. Murdered. How do you know? '
Er, I saw him. And his copy, or what was left of it anyway.
Someone had snatched the engravings and tried to burn the rest.
What do you make of it?
'Tragic, it's tragic. What about Baroness Kessler today? '
- Where are you? - 'What about her copy? '
Why do I get the impression you've been breathing down my neck?
'You're an investment of mine, Mr Corso.
'I'm merely looking after it.'
She swears her copy's authentic, but I couldn't examine it closely.
She threw me out as soon as she guessed you were behind my visit.
You weren't exactly in her good books.
'Well, you must see her again.'
Have you seen her secretary?
'Try the lunch break.'
Hello?
You have a photocopying machine back there?
Y-yes, monsieur.
- May I use it? - 0f course, monsieur.
- '0ui? ' - Er, yes, hello, Baroness.
It's me, the wolf in sheep's clothing.
'I thought I made myself quite clear, Mr Corso.'
Well... I've got something for you, Baroness.
A kind of peace offering.
Will you allow me to give it to you? Please?
First, let me apologise.
I should have told you that I'm working for Boris Balkan.
It was foolish of me to think I could deceive someone as astute as you.
Please forgive me.
Flattery will get you nowhere, Mr Corso.
Get on with it.
Right.
These...
...are for you.
What is this? What is this supposed to be?
Your knowledge of the Nine Gates is extensive.
But did you ever compare your copy with the other two?
No. Why?
You should.
These are copies of the engravings in Balkan's book.
Some of them differ from yours.
Differ?! So you question my book's authenticity, do you?
If that's your peace offering, you can take it and go.
My Nine Gates is absolutely genuine.
I don't dispute that. In my opinion, all three copies are genuine.
But still, they display variations.
Variations?
If that were true, it would be a revelation.
What makes you so sure?
I've already compared these with the Fargas engravings.
In his book...
the keys were in the other hand.
Here, the doorway wasn't bricked up.
And in this one, the man was hanging by the other leg.
- Well? - Well, what?
Look closely, Baroness.
The turrets, three in yours...
four in Balkan's.
Amazing.
I'm convinced there'll be a third one in here somewhere.
Three variations in three copies makes nine.
Coincidence or something more?
Maybe Torchia hid the secret of the Ninth Gate in three books. Not one.
I must admit, I'm impressed.
This puts an entirely different complexion on the matter.
You have my permission to investigate further, Mr Corso.
Take as long as you need.
My permission did not extend to that, Mr Corso.
Nobody smokes in my library.
0h...
Baroness?
Baroness...?
Excuse me, there's something missing from my room.
- Has anyone been up there? - 0nly your wife.
- I don't have a wife. - Excuse me, monsieur.
For you, monsieur. Cabine deux.
- Yes. - 'What news? '
News? Let me see...
Well...
Yes, the good news is that I got to examine the old woman's book
and three engravings were signed LCF.
The bad news is that someone strangled her
and made a bonfire of her collection.
Tragic, wouldn't you say?
'You took the words out of my mouth.'
It's the Fargas story all over again.
I think they tore out the engravings before they torched the place.
- That's two sets they've got. - 'And my copy? '
Well, I learned my lesson. I don't carry it around with me any more,
otherwise it might have gone up in smoke.
'Excellent. Good thinking.
'Well, with two copies gone, that concludes your assignment.
'Lf you could return my book.
'I'm at The Ritz, you can pick up your cheque at the same time.
'Shall we say half an hour? '
There's more bad news.
Er...
- I don't have it. - 'You don't have it? '
Someone lifted it from my room.
'Listen to me very carefully, Mr Corso.
'I think you have some idea
'of the lengths to which I'm prepared to go when I want something.
'Unless you recover my property in double-quick time,
'you'll discover just how far that can be.'
- Where is it? - What?
The book, where is it?
Would I be here if I took it, eh? You should know better by now.
I must apologise for my young colleague, it was unpardonable.
Is that her?
0h, no, monsieur. She was tall, dark hair, very chic, very elegant.
Which reminds me, I have the information you wanted.
The lady and gentleman you mentioned
are staying at the Plaza Athena Hotel, suite 209-211.
Thank you, Gruber. I owe you one. I need a taxi, quick.
Taxi? 0ui, sir.
Send this to Mr Balkan at The Ritz, that's B-A-L-K-A-N.
Fax it immediately.
Certainly, sir.
Always a pleasure to be of service.
You coming?
Monsieur, bonjour.
Thank you.
What do you plan to do?
Probably hide behind you.
Whoa, that's them. That's them.
We should grab a taxi before they take off.
Let's go.
They're going.
Coming?
Couldn't you pick something less conspicuous?
Don't be so picky. Some people would give their eye teeth for this.
We can't sit on their tail forever, they'll smell a rat.
How do I look?
Ridiculous.
Sit tight.
Take your pick.
No, you. You know everything.
If you say so.
We lost them.
Not at this speed. They must have gone the other way.
You mean I don't know everything?
Turn around.
40-ish, brunette, dishy? What was her name again?
Telfer. Liana Telfer.
No, her maiden name.
Er, Saint-Martin.
Look.
Monsieur?
Monsieur?
The chateau, I knew it.
- Merci. - Monsieur.
Keep going.
Keep going.
See them anywhere?
No.
- Sorry to intrude on you like this. - What are you doing here?
I just dropped by to pick up the book you stole.
That book is mine! We've been through this.
My husband gave it to me! It wasn't his to sell.
What happened, he catch you with that albino?
- How dare you! - Keep an eye on her.
Don't...
Be careful, she bites.
Hi.
Don't move! Either one of you.
Get the book.
Don't kill them up here, you'll make a mess.
Take them downstairs.
You go first.
And you.
Down.
0pen the door.
Watch out!
I didn't know you had it in you.
Stay here and cover me, I'm going down.
Mumbo jumbo, mumbo jumbo.
Mumbo jumbo!
Mumbo jumbo.
Look around you, what do you see?
A bunch of buffoons in fancy dress.
You think the devil would deign to manifest himself before you?
He never has and he never will. Never!
You read from his book but you have no conception of its true power.
I alone have grasped its secret.
I alone have fathomed the master's grand design.
I alone am worthy to enjoy the fruits of that discovery.
Absolute power to determine my own destiny.
You're insane, give it back!
You, Liana de Saint-Martin,
you're even guiltier than the rest of this rabble.
You have at least some idea of what this book can do,
yet you lend yourself to these farcical proceedings,
these orgies of ageing flesh conducted in the master's name.
- You're a charlatan!
Don't, Corso. Don't.
Let it be.
- Boo!
What is it with you?
He just murdered someone in public, you're off the hook...
for the other killings.
- You should be grateful. - I'm ecstatic.
The job's over. What more do you want?
You know what!
Wait for me!
- Not taking me for a ride? - You were working for him all along.
Funny, I thought you were.
Shit!
- Madame? - 0ui?
0ne...
four...
three...
six...
seven...
five...
Eight... two... nine.
The enigma is solved at last.
To travel in silence by a long and circuitous route,
to brave the arrows of misfortune and fear neither noose nor fire,
to play the greatest of all games and win, foregoing no expense,
is to mock the vicissitudes of fate and gain at last the key
that will unlock... the Ninth Gate.
Corso.
What were you expecting? An apparition?
You're not wanted here, Mr Corso. Leave!
I'm the only apparition you'll see tonight.
You'll find a cheque at my New York office. Payment in full.
You killed for those. They're worth more than money.
Infinitely more, but they happen to be mine, not yours.
You know something, Corso?
In spite of our differences, I have a soft spot for you.
- I'm touched. - We have something in common.
We share the same passion.
You've developed the same obsession, haven't you?
Unfortunately for you, only one of us is destined fulfil it.
You're out of your depth. Go.
- I'm not leaving empty-handed. - Don't even think about it.
- Stand aside. - I credited you with more finesse.
- You heard me, stand back. - Put that away.
Ahh!
It seems you've found your proper niche. I like that.
Now...
You can watch.
I'm entering uncharted territory.
Taking the road that leads to equality... with God.
0oh...
You can't come with me.
I must travel alone.
But you may look on... and marvel.
That's very kind of you.
Indeed, it is.
There have been men who have been burned alive or disembowelled
for just a glimpse of what you are about to witness.
I give you my allegiance, master.
I pledge myself to you, body and soul.
Let me fear neither noose nor fire nor poison.
Erase me from the Book of Life,
inscribe me in the Black Book of Death.
Admit me to the Ninth Gate.
Let it be so.
Let it be so, now!
0h... yes...
I feel the power surge through me like an electric current,
rendering me capable of any feat of mind or body.
I'm invulnerable... I'm invincible...
I can float on air, I can walk on water.
Behold, I plunge my hands in fire, I feel no heat.
That's great, give us another one.
It's miraculous!
I feel nothing, nothing at all!
0h...
Is that it?
Is the game over?
For Balkan, yes. Not for you.
Why didn't it work for Balkan?
The ninth engraving was a forgery.
Where's the real one?
I want it.
You're running low on gas.
Pepe Lopic. Ricardo Errela.
Sí. Erm...
Do you speak English?
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