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The Traitor-King (film)

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The Traitor-King
Traitor-king film poster small.png
Gaullican-language teaser poster
Directed by[x]
Written by[x]
Screenplay by[x]
Produced by[x]
Starring[x]
Cinematography[x]
Edited by[x]
Music by[x]
Production
company
[x]
Distributed by[x]
Release dates
  • 3 November 2023 (2023-11-03) (Aucurian theatrical release)
  • 1 December 2023 (2023-12-01) (worldwide theatrical release)
Running time
xxx minutes
CountryAucuria
LanguagesRunanca, Ruttish
Box office€tbd

The Traitor-King (Ruttish: Išdavikas-Karalius; Runanca: Sirpaq-Qhapaq) is a 2023 Aucurian biographical historical drama film directed by [x], with a screenplay by [x]. Starring [x], [x], and [x], the film depicts the Ruttish conquest of Cutinsua from the perspective of Kapakrokas, the final qhapaq of Čačapojas, who allied with Jurgis Leikauskas against hanan qhapaq Javarjupankis before being overthrown himself by Leikauskas.

The film is scheduled to premiere on October 23rd, 2023 at the 84th Montecara Film Festival. It is then slated for a theatrical release in Aucuria on November 3rd and a global release on December 1st.

Plot

The film begins in the present day with a wordless close shot of a human skeleton, some of its bones visibly broken, sitting in a display case at the Museum of World History in Wiesstadt, Werania.

The film then jumps back to April 1528, as Kapakrokas, qhapaq of Čačapojas, and his chief priest [tbd 1] perform a ritual honoring the preceding qhapaqs of Čačapojas by placing food and drink in front of their ritually-disinterred sarcophagi. Afterwards, Kapakrokas, his qhapaqpa rantin (chief minister) Ljokiačakas and apukispay (chief general) Vaskaravalpas discuss the efforts of Javarvakakas, an earlier qhapaq of Čačapojas, to prevent the consolidation of Andavailan hegemony within the League of Five Cities, and how these efforts were foiled by hanan qhapaq and qhapaq of Andavaila Atokjupankis; Kapakrokas mourns Javarvakakas's failure, and bemoans the consequences of Andavailan hegemony. The three also discuss the arrival of pale-skinned men along Cutinsua's Arucian coastline, and the turmoil occurring in Tzapotla and Térachu following similar events there.

Simultaneously, [tbd 2], the Čačapojan envoy to Andavaila, watches as incumbent hanan qhapaq & qhapaq of Andavaila Javarjupankis and his court receive a group of armor-clad Ruttish užkariautojai, led by Jurgis Leikauskas. Leikauskas and Javarjupankis communicate through a pair of translators - Javarjupankis's translator Koljavazas, and Leikauskas's translator Anacaona, a Nati woman given as a gift to one of Leikauskas's subordinates by a Nati chieftain. Afterwards, [tbd 2] sends a message back to Čačapojas summarizing the meeting between Javarjupankis and Leikauskas; he notes that Javarjupankis hopes to assert his authority over the new arrivals by resolving the emerging disputes between Leikauskas and Cutinsua's Nati vassals in the region, thereby getting the Ruttish to recognize him as their ruler, and that the Ruttish seem aware of this - and unwilling to do so.

Kapakrokas and his advisors discuss [tbd 2]'s message. Returning to their earlier discussion, Kapakrokas notes that, in Térachu, another group of pale-skinned men helped Kuokisiska overthrow Mokumitsa and install himself as monarch. He declares that the arrival of Leikauskas's party represents a chance to end Andavailan dominance which Čačapojas cannot afford to miss, and suggests that Čačapojas seek to ally itself with the Ruttish against Andavaila. Vaskaravalpas and a majority of the other advisors present agree; Ljokiačakas, fearing that the new arrivals cannot be trusted, is wary but accepts Kapakrokas's decision. He sends a message back to [tbd 2], telling him to reach out to the envoys of Suljanas and Akarajas in Andavaila, as Suljanas and Akarajas will likely be sympathetic to Kapakrokas's plan.

Shortly thereafter, as negotiations between Javarjupankis and Leikauskas stall, [tbd 2] - alongside the envoys from Suljanas and Akarajas - approaches Leikauskas and proposes that he meet with the other qhapaqs in Suljanas. Leikauskas agrees, telling Javarjupankis that he intends to return to Andavaila to resume negotiations soon.

In May, Kapakrokas and his leading advisors travel to meet Leikauskas, qhapaq of Suljanas Atavjupankis, and delegates representing qhapaq of Akarajas Vajnakapakas for negotiations. Kapakrokas promises to recognize Ruttish authority over the mouth of the Pautė River - where the Rutts have constructed the settlement of Apvaizda - in exchange for their assistance in a rebellion by Čačapojas, Suljanas, and Akarajas against Andavaila. After some negotiation, Leikauskas agrees, and all parties begin clandestinely moving to prepare, the agreement being to openly declare rebellion once Ruttish reinforcements arrive from Apvaizda.

Before the parties disperse, Kapakrokas is pulled aside by Anacaona. Anacaona warns Kapakrokas that the Ruttish are extremely contemptuous of Asterians, and will not willingly recognize the authority - or even equality - of anyone but one of their own; she also tells him that many of them are motivated by a desire for wealth and plunder, and warns him against trusting them. Kapakrokas dismisses her words as those of a woman born to a middling chieftain, and restates his conviction that their arrival will end Andavailan hegemony over Cutinsua, restoring it to its original status as an alliance of co-equal city-states.

In June, the rebellion begins. A pro-Andavailan army, led by Andavailan general Kamjanjavis and qhapaq of Lambajekė Ninanamaras, meets an anti-Andavailan army led by Kapakrokas, Vajnakapakas, Atavjupankis, and Leikauskas near the town of Laurikočas; the battle is a slaughter, as the pro-Andavailan army is outnumbered and unable to face Ruttish horses & cannon. Both Kamjanjavis and Ninanamaras are killed, and the shattered pro-Andavailan army desperately retreats back to Andavaila itself.

A siege of Andavaila ensues, dragging on for several weeks. In late October, Kapakrokas watches a woman commit suicide by jumping from the city walls, followed by Javarjupankis inexplicably leading his army out of the city to engage in open battle. During the battle, Leikauskas and his men capture Javarjupankis, which causes the pro-Andavailan army to collapse into total disarray. As its army disintegrates, Andavaila is brutally sacked, with much of the city looted and destroyed; most of Javarjupankis's court is either killed (including his wife, Koja Azarpajas, and his chief priest, [tbd 3]) or captured (including his sister Kusiquljuras and the translator Koljavazas); the only notable Andavailan official to escape is his apukispay, Kavotoronkas, who manages to escape southward with a small contingent of troops.

The imprisoned Javarjupankis is put on trial, by the rebels for violating the rights of the other city-states and by the Ruttish for heathenry, murder, and incest. During the trial, Javarjupankis attempts to defend himself, but his defenses are largely ignored. Kapakrokas denounces Javarjupankis's alleged tyranny and openly proclaims that he has righted the wrongs done to Javarvakakas, while Leikauskas denounces Javarjupankis as a pagan savage.

Unsurprisingly, Javarjupankis is found guilty and, as the Ruttish hold custody, they decide on the sentence. Leikauskas announces that Javarjupankis will be sentenced to death by immolation, which shocks and horrifies the Cutinsuans due to the value placed on maintaining and protecting the bodies of the dead by Cutinsuan religion; Vaskaravalpas begins to reconsider the decision to ally with the Rutts, but Kapakrokas is too blinded by his moment of triumph to care. Leikauskas subsequently offers to commute the sentence to strangulation if Javarjupankis converts toSotirianity, to which Javarjupankis agrees; he faces his death with stoic resignation, and is executed in mid-January of 1529.

[kapakrokas is proclaimed as the new hanan qhapaq by the rebels, but shortly thereafter they receive word that tupakarancas - javarjupankis's brother and governor of oruras - has proclaimed himself hanan qhapaq and has kavotoronkas in his service; the pro-cacapojans and andavailan remnants meet again on the battlefield in february, and are again defeated, with tupakarancas, his wife kusirimajas, and kavotoronkas all captured, leaving oruras to fall with little resistance]

[once again, a trial, but a rushed, mock trial; vaskaravalpas's worry turns into disgust when he learns that kavotoronkas has been tortured to death by a group of užkariautojai who believed he knew the location of hidden andavailan treasures, but kapakrokas dismisses it out of hand as the fate of a traitor; tupakarancas and kusirimajas are sentenced to death by burning by the rutts, and defiantly refuse to convert, and so are burnt alive in oruras's main square; the forces now prepare to return to andavaila, from where the rutts will head back to apvaizda and the cutinsuan rebels back to their respective cities/to crush pockets of resistance]

[however, in the town of kailjomas on march 17, a group of cutinsuan soldiers attempt to use communion wafers and wine as offerings to a local waka; they are spotted by some rutts, who see this as desecration of the eucharist; a fight ensues, some of the rutts go back to alert their main group by telling them that the cutinsuans have attacked them; a massacre follows as the rutts turn on their unsuspecting erstwhile allies; atavjupankis and vajnakapakas are killed, kapakrokas orders his men to retreat and attempts to escape back to cacapojas with a small fragment of his army led by himself and vaskaravalpas]

[on this march back, kapakrokas is shellshocked as he finally does realize he has massively miscalculated and realizes he is likely to suffer the same fate or worse as all the other murdered cutinsuan leaders]

[a few days later, the ruttish - faster on horseback than the cacapojans on foot - ambush the cacapojans; vaskaravalpas is killed and kapakrokas is dragged before leikauskas; kapakrokas totally breaks down and begs for his life, offering to do literally anything leikauskas wishes in exchange for being allowed to survive; leikauskas is disgusted by kapakrokas's begging, comparing it unfavorably to javarjupankis's stoicism and tupakarancas's defiance, but accepts, on the condition that kapakrokas abdicate, convert, and go into exile; anacaona watches as koljavazas relays leikauskas's words to kapakrokas]

[kapakrokas, bound and chained, is taken by the rutts to cacapojas as they seize and plunder the city; [chief priest] is tortured into revealing the location where the bodies of previous cacapojan qhapaqs are kept, and kapakrokas is made to watch as the rutts burn them, and [chief priest], on a massive pyre; ljokiacakas is also executed; kapakrokas is then taken to apvaizda, where he and several other captives, as well as a large amount of treasure, are put on a ship sailing to ruttland]

[on the ship, kapakrokas is morose and seasick; he attempts conversation with one of the other captives, who gives his name as tirikas and bitterly reveals that he was a soldier in the andavailan army who - naturally - blames kapakrokas for what has happened; afterwards kapakrokas basically stops trying to socialize, and instead reflects upon the realization that while javarjupankis and his ilk will no doubt be lionized as martyrs, he will be forever remembered as a coward and a traitor regardless of his original goal]

[upon arrival in ruttland, the captives are taken to the court of king kestutis iii algirdas; the other captives are put to use as servants, but kapakrokas is kept in a locked apartment, where he struggles with euclean clothes, food, and customs; kestutis once comes to see him, but kapakrokas does not speak any ruttish and is not exactly in the mood to converse; in spite of this, he periodically has kapakrokas brought out into the court, dressed in ill-fitting euclean finery, as an exhibit piece]

[kapakrokas apologizes to tirikas, who notes that the apology is basically worthless but does at least start tolerating kapakrokas]

[some time in the winter, kapakrokas is once again summoned to the court; this time, however, he and the other captives are dressed in mock cutinsuan finery and plundered jewelry, with kapakrokas dressed as a qhapaq the other captives playing the role of his servants; as they wait in the wings, kestutis addresses a large party - including ambassadors from povelia, gaullica, and cislania - and proclaims that while gaullica and povelia can show off great wealth from their new asterian domains, ruttland has the unique privilege of being able to present to them the last emperor of cutinsua, at which point kapakrokas and the captives are paraded out as a spectacle]

[by this point kapakrokas is deeply homesick, literally sick due to euclea's cold weather, and utterly humiliated; one evening, he asks tirikas to leave his door unlocked, to which tirikas agrees, then adds that tirikas - who has learned some ruttish - should inform the court that, when he dies, kapakrokas wishes for his body to be returned to his homeland; tirikas nods in understanding]

[during the middle of the night, kapakrokas sneaks through the palace until he finds a stairwell which leads him to the palace roof; wordlessly, he jumps off of the roof]

The film then abruptly cuts back to the skeleton in the Wiesstadt Museum of World History. As the shot slowly pans out, a tour guide speaking in Gaullican leads a group of tourists into frame, tells them that the skeleton belonged to a Cutinsuan man who was brought to Euclea by the Ruttish in the 1500s, then directs their attention towards several gold and silver Cutinsuan artifacts sitting in another display case.

Cast

  • [x] as Kapakrokas, qhapaq of Čačapojas
  • [x] as Ljokiačakas, qhapaqpa rantin (chief minister) of Čačapojas
  • [x] as Vaskaravalpas, apukispay (chief general) of Čačapojas
  • [x] as Javarjupankis, hanan qhapaq of Cutinsua and qhapaq of Andavaila
  • [x] as Tupakarančas, brother of Javarjupankis and governor of Oruras
  • [x] as Kavotoronkas, apukispay of Andavaila
  • [x] as Jurgis Leikauskas, Ruttish soldier and užkariautojas
  • [x] as Anacaona, daughter of a Nati chieftain, "given" to the Rutts as a translator
  • [x] as Tirikas, an Andavailan soldier later taken as a captive to Ruttland

The film also features [x] as [tbd], Čačapojan envoy to Andavaila; [x] as [tbd], chief priest of Čačapojas; [x] as [tbd], uncle of Javarjupankis and chief priest of Andavaila; [x] as Aklasisa, an Andavailan priestess said to have the gift of prophecy; Koljavazas, an advisor and translator in service to Javarjupankis; [x] as Kamjanjavis, another Andavailan general; [x] as Koja Azarpajas, wife of Javarjupankis; [x] as Kusiqujluras, the eldest sister of Javarjupankis, later forced to marry Leikauskas; [x] as Kusirimajas, wife of Tupakarančas; [x] as Atavjupankis, qhapaq of Suljanas and an ally of Kapakrokas; [x] as Vajnakapakas, qhapaq of Akarajas and another of Kapakrokas's allies; [x] as [tbd], an envoy sent by Vajnakapakas to Čačapojas for the initial meeting between Kapakrokas and Leikauskas; [x] as Ninanamaras, qhapaq of Lambajekė, the only qhapaq to remain loyal to Andavaila; [x] as Mindaugas Sidaravičius, Leikauskas's aide-de-camp; [x] and [x] as Pilypas Murauskas and Mykolas Basanavičius, two of Leikauskas's key subordinates; [x] as [tbd], the Sotirian priest accompanying the užkariautojai; [x] as Juozapas Petravičius, castellan of Apvaizda; [x] as Henrikas Klimauskas, the užkariautojas to whom Anacaona was "given"; [x] as Paulius Vilniškis, the užkariautojas tasked by Leikauskas with taking a shipment of treasure and captives back to Ruttland; [x] as Kestutis III Algirdas, king of Ruttland; and [x] as a tour guide at the Museum of World History in Wiesstadt.

Additionally, [x], [x], and [x] appear as envoys from Gaullica, Povelia, and Cislania respectively visiting the Ruttish court.

Production

Development, writing, and casting

Filming and cinematography

Music and sound design

Historical accuracy

[anacaona did not speak quechua]

[several individuals whose real-world fates are unknown have fates decided for them in the movie]

[tirikas is fictional]

Release

[release date]

Reception

Box office

[release in aucuria]

[release internationally]

Critical response

[crit resp]

General reception

[general resp]

[contro over museum framing device?]

Accolades

Wins

Nominations