Swedish detective drama. Beck gets a call from a colleague who's in Stockholm for an art auction. He was outbid by a woman who was later found dead in his hotel.
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The estimate is 100,000.
Any bids proceeding 540,000?
A Japanese shunga painting, signed and dated by Shigemasa, 1873.
The estimate is 25,000.
It seems that I'm constantly putting my clothes in your way.
Please, have a seat.
Hans Sperling, from Germany.
I wouldn't have guessed.
-And you are from Poland?
-No, absolutely not.
Well, I was married to a Pole, very briefly.
Now, I need a drink.
Oh, it's on me, please.
What would you like to drink?
A glass of white, dry wine, please.
Excuse me. A glass of white, dry wine, please.
And you're a collector?
Yes, if my wallet so permits.
I have a couple of shunga paintings.
None is signed, so when I heard this from here...
Oh, you came to Stockholm just to bid on the painting?
And you collect erotic art, too?
No, I bought it on the behalf of a client.
I am...an art agent.
-Was this your first visit at Bukowski's?
What did you think?
You obviously have prearranged biddings here, too.
Very observant, I must say.
They're usually very discreet in the ring.
You could feel it in the air.
And you call it "the ring"?
We have the same phenomenon in Germany, too.
But why did they let the shunga painting go?
Well, the price went too high, and...
because I was the one who bid on it.
Well, they know I have financial muscle behind me,
and their interest is to keep the bidding low.
And, well, that's what the ring's for.
-Yeah. A rather sordid business.
But difficult to get at.
I know some of them who were there.
None of them would ever admit to what they're doing.
May I ask...
Is it only Japanese shunga paintings you collect?
Everything with an erotic motive.
-Yes, isn't it?
Well, I actually have a customer who had some...etchings that just
-might interest you.
-Because of their motive?
They're... He was about to sell them just recently,
but something got in the way.
They're of a rather high quality.
A bit of the more...censored kind.
But unfortunately I have to go back tomorrow.
Oh, you know, I'm going
to receive a couple of Chagall lithographs coming here to me
just in a while, for a customer who wants to have a look at them, and...
Well, perhaps I can get the prints here at the same time.
-Yeah, why not?
What price level are we talking about?
We can talk about that when you've seen them.
Shall we have dinner here at, let's say...9 o'clock?
Yes, let's do that.
Oh, I live in room 119. Just in case anything crops up.
Excuse me, please.
Could you call Marie Lisowska? It's 119, I believe.
Yes, that's right. One moment.
There's no answer. Sorry.
Excuse me, could you please call Marie Lisowska again?
-It's room 119, right?
Sorry, there's still no answer.
-She hasn't checked out, has she?
-OK. Thank you.
The Woman And The Roses.
The Woman And The Roses?
Who bought that painting yesterday at the auction?
The man who bought that is part of what they, in Swedish,
-call "a ring".
-How do you know that?
Because I was there yesterday and I observed the man, and I think it
would be in your interest as well as in the interest
of your customers if you disclosed that man.
DISTANT SIREN WAILS
MALE VOICES SING: # But come you back when summer's in the meadow
# Or when the valley's hushed and white with snow
# Tis I'll be... #
# Oh Danny Boy, I love you so. #
# Oh Danny boy,
# The pipes, the pipes are calling
# From glen to glen
# And down the mountainside... #
PHONE RECEIVES TEXT
CAMERA CLICKS REPEATEDLY
I hope I do not complicate things for you.
Not at all. We're just grateful for your help.
So, I'm not on Gunvald Larsson's list of suspects any longer?
You've never been on that list.
Have you been in contact with Germany?
But I haven't mentioned that I'm part of a
Swedish murder investigation.
Because I'm not quite sure in what way I'm part of it. Are you?
Maybe it would be the best if I went home.
No. Not yet.
This investigation concerns areas where your knowledge is far
better than mine.
The world of art is not my speciality.
And what is your speciality?
HE POURS WINE
Nice to meet you, and welcome to my castle.
You see, normally, my collection is open for the public just
a couple of hours during weekends, but, for you, I make an exception.
But who's he?
He's the one who does the driving.
I see. I see.
Well, just a few principle rules.
Cellphones are normally not allowed in the castle, it's a
policy I have. And, um...
I have a metal detector in the doorframe, hmm?
Because the other year there was a madman slashing
one of my Matisse paintings into pieces with a large knife.
It's most stimulating to meet a genuine connoisseur,
doesn't happen every day, you know.
Most of the people are coming here for the erotic collection
out of more pornographic pretexts, I fancy.
I've taken a fancy to the shunga paintings,
and I've heard you have a couple of them.
Oh, yes. Yes, yes. But none of them is signed, though.
You don't get them very often.
-I saw one quite recently.
-Oh, you mean the one at Bukowski's?
That is the reason why I am here in Sweden.
Oh, so you bid for it.
But it was some other collector who got it.
Uh-huh. What did it go for?
Oh, that's a reasonable price.
Hmm. For the seller or the buyer?
For both, I hope.
But it had a tragic end, though.
What do you mean?
The woman who purchased the shunga, she was an art agent.
And she was murdered that very same evening.
She was sitting right beside me at the auction.
No, that is terrible.
Do you think it's in connection with her purchase...?
No, no, no, no, no. The shunga? No, why should that be?
But you don't know on whose behalf she bought it?
Well, I can't say I know.
But you have an idea.
There are some sensual motives here, hmm?
There really are.
And quite some money invested.
I can see that.
My body shouldn't really be exposed to this kind of visual orgasm.
May I invite you to stay for supper?
It sounds tempting.
But I have to consult my chauffeur whether we shall...
He will naturally get an excellent meal,
together with the rest of the staff.
We have an invitation for dinner.
All my dead wines.
It's my little speciality.
Wines that are over-aged
and gone dead.
very expensive wines.
I'm very aware that my taste for dead wines is shared only by
a very few people in the world.
I'm one of them.
A touch of cold shark fin.
A drop of old vinegar.
-Oh, oh, oh, oh!
Oh, I'm so sorry.
It's so unusual that I...I meet someone who...
I am unusual.
Yes, you really are.
The kidney's marinated in Barola and then baked in the oven,
wrapped in a garlic crust.
Excuse me for a second.
It will just take a short while.
Enjoy yourself during the meantime.
BECK RECEIVES A TEXT MESSAGE
GUNVALD CRIES OUT IN PAIN
You have to excuse me for this interruption, but you see,
as an art dealer for the whole world, I have to be available
at all times.
..I must ask you a question.
Do you have any phobias?
On the erotic plane?
Oh, no. Generally speaking.
No, I can't say I have.
And what is it?
That somebody I've taken a liking to,
who I thought was a refined person...
..suddenly turns out to be someone completely different.
Hmm. A split personality.
A simple personality...
..who tries to play a game he doesn't master at all.
Sounds like a very unpleasant phobia.
Would you like to see a tipple of art history before the main course?
What shall I call it?
A biological still life.
Nor In This Case...
Goya. The Civil War.
One of his most powerful etchings. Don't you think it's formidable?
Well, it's not... It's not an erotic motive, but...
..for us who like dead, dead wines,
a morbid motive has its own special fascination,
don't you think so? Hmm?
Well, how do you want to be displayed?
The sheer volume of your body makes...
It's most inspiring.
Do you know that he painted a little bit behind the scenes?
Some erotic motives.
Or, well..some nudes.
a little oil painting with a young woman...
cutting up the belly...
on a fat...
Well, one could...
One could replace the woman...
..with a naked chauffeur.
Oh, talking of which,
asked one of my guards...
..to give you this.
Well, I had to silence Marie
because she was very close to discovering what
Sun and I were doing.
But she was a beautiful woman...
with high morals...
..that I held in high esteem,
as long as it didn't intervene with my interests.
But it suddenly did... DOG BARKS
But she got to be one of the Chagall lithographs
she loved the most,
but I made a biological still life
with one of her favourite paintings.
The Woman And The Roses.
That's my way of showing her my respect.
This way, please.
And what about Sun?
He was a loyal friend.
And a brilliant printer.
But he wasn't prepared to commit murder to protect our treasure.
And when he heard what happened to Marie,
he threatened to crush and smash the stones.
And you, better than anyone else,
would know what that meant.
It's cultural treasure.
So, I had to take care of Sun, too. DOG BARKS
And, as a genuine lover
of all Japanese erotic art,
he got his biological tribute, together with his two printers.
Shigemasa's shunga painting.
What a pity...
MALE VOICES HUM DANNY BOY
# Oh Danny boy,
# The pipes, the pipes are calling
# From glen to glen
# And down the mountainside
# The summer's gone
# And all the flowers are dying
# Tis you, tis you
# Must go and I must bide
# But come you back
# When summer's in the meadow... #
Martin Beck gets a phone call from his German colleague Hans Sperling, who is in Stockholm for an art auction. Sperling was interested in a Japanese erotic painting but was outbid by a woman who was later found dead in his hotel, and he needs Beck's help. Beck investigates the murder, together with his team and Sperling, which leads them into a dark world of art fraud.
In Swedish and German with English subtitles.