Lord of War (2005)
- Spoilers (1)
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Of all the weapons in the vast soviet arsenal, nothing was more profitable than Avtomat Kalashnikova model of 1947. More commonly known as the AK-47, or Kalashnikov. It's the world's most popular assault rifle. A weapon all fighters love. An elegantly simple 9 pound amalgamation of forged steel and plywood. It doesn't break, jam, or overheat. It'll shoot whether it's covered in mud or filled with sand. It's so easy, even a child can use it; and they do. The Soviets put the gun on a coin. Mozambique put it on their flag. Since the end of the Cold War, the Kalashnikov has become the Russian people's greatest export. After that comes vodka, caviar, and suicidal novelists. One thing is for sure, no one was lining up to buy their cars.
Yuri Orlov: [first lines, to the camera] There are over 550 million firearms in worldwide circulation. That's one firearm for every twelve people on the planet. The only question is: How do we arm the other 11?
Yuri Orlov: [narrating] There are two types of tragedies in life. One is not getting what you want, the other is getting it.
Yuri Orlov: [in an interrogation room] The reason I'll be released is the same reason you think I'll be convicted. I do rub shoulders with some of the most vile, sadistic men calling themselves leaders today. But some of these men are the enemies of your enemies. And while the biggest arms dealer in the world is your boss - the President of the United States, who ships more merchandise in a day than I do in a year - sometimes it's embarrassing to have his fingerprints on the guns. Sometimes he needs a freelancer like me to supply forces he can't be seen supplying. So. You call me evil, but unfortunately for you, I'm a necessary evil.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Some of the most successful relationships are based on lies and deceit. Since that's where they usually end up anyway, it's a logical place to start.
Yuri Orlov: [last lines, to the camera] You know who's going to inherit the Earth? Arms dealers. Because everyone else is too busy killing each other. That's the secret to survival. Never go to war. Especially with yourself.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: They say that I am the lord of war, but perhaps it is you.
Yuri Orlov: I believe it's "warlord."
Andre Baptiste Sr.: Thank you, but I prefer it my way.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] They say, "Evil prevails when good men fail to act." What they ought to say is, "Evil prevails."
Anatoly Orlov: [siting on a long bench together in the hallway to their apartment] Is this how you want to be remembered?
Yuri Orlov: [chuckles] I don't want to be remembered at all. If I'm being remembered, it means I'm dead.
Jack Valentine: [in the middle of the desert with an empty plane nearby] Do you know why I do what I do? I mean, there are more prestigeous assignments. Keeping track of nuclear arsenels - you'd think that be more critical to world security. But it's not. No, nine out of ten war victims today are killed with assault rifles and small arms - like yours. Those nuclear weapons sit in their silos. Your AK-47, that's the real weapon of mass destruction.
Yuri Orlov: [sitting on a small wooden crate] I don't want people dead, Agent Valentine. I don't put a gun to anybody's head and make them shoot. But shooting is better for business. But, I prefer people to fire my guns and miss. Just as long as they are firing. Can I go now?
Yuri Orlov: [voiceover] I'm not saying I didn't have setbacks. It's not called "gunrunning" for nothing. You've gotta be fast on your feet. Some revolutions blow over before the guns even get there. There's nothing more expensive for an arms dealer than peace.
Yuri Orlov: [into cell phone] Truce? What do you mean, truce, the guns are already on their way... Peace talks... All right, forget it. I'll reroute the shipment to the Balkans. When they say they're going to have a war, they keep their word!
Andre Baptiste Jr.: Can you bring me the gun of Rambo?
Yuri Orlov: Part One, Two, or Three?
Andre Baptiste Jr.: I've only seen Part One.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I was an equal opportunity merchant of death. I supplied everyone but the Salvation Army. I sold Israeli-model Uzis to Muslims. I sold Communist-made bullets to Fascists... I even shipped cargo to Afghanistan when they were fighting my fellow Soviets. I never sold to Osama bin Laden. Not on any moral grounds: back then, he was always bouncing checks.
Ava Fontaine: [in their bedroom] We have enough. You can stop now.
Yuri Orlov: It's not about the money.
Ava Fontaine: What is it about?
Yuri Orlov: I'm good at it.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating, looking at a cigarette advertising poster with Ava's face in the center] The problem with dating dream girls is that they have a tendency to become real.
Yuri Orlov: [in an interrogation room] Enjoy it.
Jack Valentine: What?
Yuri Orlov: This. Tell me I'm everything you despise. That I'm the personification of evil. That I'm what- responsible for the breakdown of the fabric of society and world order. I'm a one-man genocide. Say everything you want to say to me now. Because you don't have long.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Every faction in Africa calls themselves by these noble names - Liberation this, Patriotic that, Democratic Republic of something-or-other... I guess they can't own up to what they usually are: the Federation of Worse Oppressors Than the Last Bunch of Oppressors. Often, the most barbaric atrocities occur when both combatants proclaim themselves Freedom Fighters.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating, escorting Ava from his car and to his rented plane] You can't force someone to fall in love with you but, you can definitely improve your odds.
Yuri Orlov: [when a gun is aimed at him point-blank] Oh, the new MP-5. Would you like a silencer for that?
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I sell to leftists, and rightists. I sell to pacifists, but they're not the most regular customers. Of course, you're not a * true internationalist until you've supplied weapons to kill your *own* countrymen.
Yuri Orlov: [to Jack] Luckily we live in a world where suspicion alone does not constitute a crime.
Yuri Orlov: [to Andre Sr] Where there's a will, there's a weapon.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Without operations like mine it would be impossible for certain countries to conduct a respectable war. I was able to navigate around those inconvenient little arms embargoes. There are three basic types of arms deal: white, being legal, black, being illegal, and my personal favorite color, *gray*. Sometimes I made the deal so convoluted, it was hard for *me* to work out if they were on the level.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] You can fight a lot of enemies and survive, but not your biology.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] The ones who know don't care anymore, and the ones who care don't know.
Simeon Weisz: [to Yuri, sitting across from each other after dinner] Bullets change governments far surer than votes.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Thank God there are still legal ways to exploit developing countries. The only problem with an honest buck is they're so hard to make - the margins are too low, too many people are doin' it.
Jack Valentine: I don't think you appreciate the seriousness of your situation.
Yuri Orlov: My family has disowned me. My wife and son have left me. My brother's dead. Trust me, I fully appreciate the seriousness of my situation. And I promise you, I won't spend a single second in a court room.
Jack Valentine: You're delusional.
Yuri Orlov: I like you, Jack. Well, maybe not, but I understand you. Let me tell you what's gonna happen. This way you can prepare yourself.
Jack Valentine: Okay...
Yuri Orlov: Soon there's going to be a knock on that door and you will be called outside. In the hall there will be a man who out-ranks you. First he'll compliment you on the fine job you've done - on you making the world a safer place. That you're to receive a commendation or a promotion. And then he's going to tell you that I am to be released. You're going to protest. You'll probably threaten to resign. But in the end, I *will* be released. The reason I'll be released is the same reason you think I'll be convicted. I do rub shoulders with some of the most vile, sadistic men calling themselves leaders today. But some of those men
[pointing at newspaper articles]
Yuri Orlov: are the enemies of your enemies. And while the biggest arms dealer in the world is your boss, the President of the United States, who ships more merchandise in a day than I do in a year, sometimes it's embarrassing to have his fingerprints on the guns. Sometimes he needs a freelancer like me to supply forces he can't be seen supplying. So, *you* call me evil, but unfortunately for you, I'm a necessary evil.
[knock at the door]
Jack Valentine: I'd tell you to go to hell, but I think you're already there.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] The first and most important rule of gun-running is: Never get shot with your own merchandise.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] After the Cold War, the AK-47 became Russia's biggest export. After that came vodka, caviar, and suicidal novelists.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Selling a gun for the first time is a lot like having sex for the first time. You're excited but you don't really know what the hell you're doing. And some way, one way or another, it's over too fast.
Yuri Orlov: [referring to Angel] Any friend of my brothers' is a... a friend of my brothers'.
Vitaly Orlov: Yuri, what the fuck do you know about guns?
Yuri Orlov: I know which end I'd rather be on.
Angel: [with Yuri and their parents standing next to them] My name is Angel.
Vitaly Orlov: [while carrying her over to the Christmas tree display] Her name really is Angel! Let's put her on the Christmas tree!
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating, opens the door to his hotel room and sees two African women slowly dancing on his bed] In the most AIDS-infested region of the globe - where 1 in 4 is infected - Andy's idea of a joke was to put a young Iman and a young Naomi in my bed - and no condom within a hundred miles.
Yuri Orlov: You read the newspapers, Vit?
Vitaly Orlov: Newspaper? It's always the same.
Yuri Orlov: You're right. Every day there's people shooting each other. You know what I do when I see that? I look to see what guns they're using and I think to myself, why not my guns?
Jack Valentine: Since you're so concerned with the law, you must know that I am legally permitted to hold you for 24 hours without charging you. You might ask why I would do that, and I can assure you it's not because I enjoy your company, because I don't. No. The reason why I will delay you for every second of the permissible 24 hours is I'm delaying your deadly trade and the deaths of your victims. I don't think of it as taking a day away from you, but giving a day to them. Some innocent man, woman or child is going to have an extra day on this Earth because you're not free. So I will see you in... 23 hours and 55 minutes.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I am not a fool. I know that just because they needed me that day didn't mean they wouldn't make me a scapegoat the next.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] My son's birthday unlocked what the government would later describe, as a catalog of carnage.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I was guilty as sin, but Valentine couldn't prove it. And he was the rarest breed of law enforcement officer. The type who knew I was breaking the law, but wouldn't break it himself to bust me.
Jack Valentine: [to Yuri, in an interrogation room] I would tell you to go to hell, but I think you're already there.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] the primary market was Africa, Eleven major conflicts involving twenty three countries in less than a decade. A gunrunner's wet dream. At the time the West couldn't care less, they had a white war in what was left of Yugoslavia.
Ava Fontaine: [to Yuri, in their bedroom] I don't care if it's legal! It's wrong.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating, after Vitaly and Andre Jr. were killed ] I now shared even more in common with the leader of that country God seemed to have forsaken. We saw something in each other neither one of us liked, or maybe we were just looking in the mirror.
Title Card: While private gunrunners continue to thrive, the world's biggest arms suppliers are the U.S., U.K., Russia, France, and China. They are also the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.
Yuri Orlov: [to Simeon Weisz] I was the same man who was not good enough for you before, and I'm just not good enough for you now.
Simeon Weisz: [to Yuri sitting across from each other after dinner] The problem with gun runners going to war, is that there is no shortage of ammunition.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I think I've been cursed, with the curse of invincibility.
Yuri Orlov: [encouraging Sierra Leonean natives to remove an illegal shipment from his cargo plane, which has been forced by Interpol to land on a dirt road] Guns, grenades, hooray! Bullets, guns, grenades! Yeah!
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I have been running away from violence my whole life. I should have been running towards it. It's in our nature. Earliest human skeletons had spearheads in their heads and ribcages.
Yuri Orlov: [to Jack, sitting on a small wooden crate] Can I go now? You got nothing on me. Except cuffs.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] What a cargo crew at Heathrow Airport does in a day, took a bunch of malnourished Sierra Leonean locals ten minutes.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [to Yuri about his country's youth] Personally, I blame MTV.
Yuri Orlov: [voiceover] You don't have to worry. I'm not gonna tell you a pack of lies to make me look good. I'm just gonna tell you what happened.
Arms Fair Salesman: Sir! Sir, may I interest you in the shoulder fired S-37 surface-to-air missle? It's the old Chinese model. Not so effective against modern military aircraft but deadly if used against a commerical airliner.
Yuri Orlov: [when Andre suddenly shoots a subordinate with the sample gun from the main table in the center of his palace] WHY'D YOU DO THAT?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: What did you say?
[aims at Yuri]
Yuri Orlov: [pulls himself together] Well, now you're gonna have to buy it. It's a used gun!
[pulls it out of Andre's hand. Andre's bodyguards draw on him]
Yuri Orlov: How can I sell a used gun?
[Yuri huffs and busies himself wiping and polishing it]
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Even when I was up against an overzealous agent, I had a number of methods for discouraging a search. I routinely mislabeled my shipments "farm machinery." And I have yet to meet the lowly-paid customs official who will open a container marked "radioactive waste" to verify its contents. But my personal favorite is the unique combination of week-old potatoes and tropical heat.
Yuri Orlov: "beware of the dog"? You don't have a dog. Are you trying to scare people?
Vitaly Orlov: No, it's to scare me - remind me to beware the dog in me. The dog who wants to fuck everything that moves, wants to fight and kill weaker dogs.
Vitaly Orlov: [in Russian] Oh God!
Yuri Orlov: [voice-over] Always resort to your native tongue in times of anger. And in times of ecstasy.
Ava Fontaine: [in their bedroom] I feel like all I've done my whole life is be pretty. I mean, all I've done is be born! I'm a failed actress, a failed artist... I'm not much good as a mother. Come to think of it, I'm not even that pretty anymore. I have failed at everything, Yuri... but I won't fail as a human being.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I had a flair for languages. But I soon discovered that what talks best is dollars, dinars, drachmas, rubles, rupees and pounds fucking sterling.
Jack Valentine: [eavesdropping on Yuri with other Interpol officers in a surveillance vehicle] He must be lying... He's talking.
Borneo Officer: [at the airport near the Customs counter] We're with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.
Yuri Orlov: Let me guess... this isn't about the alcohol or tobacco.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: Welcome to Democracy!
Yuri Orlov: Democracy? What have you been drinking Andy?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: Heh, you have not seen the news. You know, they accuse me of rigging elections. But after this -
[holds up a newspaper with the headline "U.S. Supreme Court Reverses Recount Ruling"]
Andre Baptiste Sr.: - with your Florida and your Supreme Court of Kangaroos, now, the U.S. will shut up forever!
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] The second rule of gun-running is always ensure you have a foolproof way of getting paid.
Andre Baptiste Jr.: [Vitaly is seen grabbing a grenade from box, next to a truck full with guns and ammunition] What are you doing?
Vitaly Orlov: [lying, his last lines] Something for Yuri.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] There's nothing better for an arms dealer than a combination of disgruntled soldiers and warehouses full of weapons.
Jack Valentine: Have you seen today's paper?
[Yuri looks at the paper headlined MERCHANT OF DEATH IN CUSTODY as Agent Valentine gives an inventory of Yuri's crimes]
Jack Valentine: Fake end-user certificates. Cut-out companies meticulously catalogued. There is hardly a warlord, dictator, despot anywhere in the world you're not on a first-name basis with.
Yuri Orlov: [Narraing the sex in the shower scene] Despite the other women, I always made love to Ava as if she was the only one.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I never sold to Osama bin Laden, not on any moral grounds, back then he was always bouncing checks
Yuri Orlov: [narrating] At 4 1/2 months old, a human fetus has a reptile's tail; a remnant of our evolution. Maybe that's what I couldn't escape. You can fight a lot of enemies and survive. But if you fight your biology, you will always lose.
Yuri Orlov: [narrating] Most people are happy just to get out of jail. I expect to be paid to leave.
Yuri Orlov: What?
Vitaly Orlov: We can't do this deal.
Yuri Orlov: Why the fuck not? What's the matter with you?
Vitaly Orlov: [Referring to a nearby refugee camp] If we hand over those guns those people are going to die.
Yuri Orlov: It's not our business.
Vitaly Orlov: They just killed a boy that was as young as Nicky.
Yuri Orlov: It's what we've always known we can't control what they do.
Vitaly Orlov: Today we can.
Yuri Orlov: What do you think they'll do to us if we back out? They'll kill us.
Vitaly Orlov: If we go ahead with the deal what'd you think they'll do to them?
Yuri Orlov: How are you brother?
Vitaly Orlov: I'm still the resident family fuck up.
Yuri Orlov: Someone has to be.
Vitaly Orlov: [Referring to Ava] She knows right? What you do, how you pay for all this? I didn't want to say anything.
Yuri Orlov: She doesn't have to know, she understands she's a survivor like me.
Vitaly Orlov: She maybe a survivor but she's not like you, she really doesn't know how you pay for all this?
Yuri Orlov: We don't talk about it. How many car salesmen talk about their work? How many cigarette salesmen talk about their work? Both their products kill more people every year than mine, at least mime comes with a safety switch. Those guys can leave their work at the office, so can I.
Vitaly Orlov: My God you are good, you almost had me convinced.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I paid a Monrovian doctor twenty dollars to remove the lead from Vitaly's body, write a bogus death certificate. I should've paid more, because I've smuggled millions of rounds of ammunition and the bullet that lands me in prison was found under my dead brother's rib. Jack Valentine finally got what he wanted.
Yuri Orlov: [to a pilot, who doubts that he can land the plane on a short runway, shorter than he originally anticipated ] You underestimate yourself Aleksei. You're the best. You're the shit Aleksei, you're the shit! You're the shit! You're the shit!
Vitaly Orlov: [to Yuri after Yuri wipes Vitaly's map of the Ukraine drawn in cocaine off a table] You fuck! You fucking fuck! You fuck- you fucking fuck! What the fuck is your problem?
Yuri Orlov: Vitaly, I've tasted your borscht. You're no fucking chef. I can eat in the restaurant for free and I still don't eat there.
Vitaly Orlov: Fuck you.
Yuri Orlov: We're doing nothing with our lives. I mean, this is shit! This is shit!
Vitaly Orlov: It's true. But maybe doing nothing's better than doing this.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I have a feeling it wasn't exactly what Comrade Lenin had in mind when he advocated the redistribution of wealth. But I wasn't the only one offering a crash course in capitalism.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] When I was a boy, my family came to America... but not all the way. Like most Ukrainians, we congregated in Brighton Beach. It reminded us of the Black Sea. I soon realized we just swapped one hell for another.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [about his child soldiers] I can see what you are thinking. But we need every man we can get.
Yuri Orlov: Even if they're not men?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: A bullet from a 14-year-old is just as effective as one from a 40-year-old. Often more effective.
Yuri Orlov: [narrating] Valentine knew he didn't have to guard me. There was no where to go. Or maybe he was hoping the locals would tear me apart. But they were too busy with the plane. It's like parking your car in certain neighborhoods in the Bronx. You don't do it.
[time-lapse of locals disassembling his cargo plane over night]
Yuri Orlov: [Andre Sr. and Andre Jr. show up unannounced at Yuri's home] What the fuck are you doing here?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [Hugs Yuri] We're here for peace talks at the United Nations.
Yuri Orlov: So at the same time you'd drop in on your arms dealer?
Yuri Orlov: We began to wonder where you went. You became a hard man to get a hold of, all of a sudden. It is a shame, my son and I were hoping to do some shopping while we are here in New York. These peace talks have made it very hard for us to supply arms, so it requires a man of your rare ingenuity.
Yuri Orlov: I can't help you, I'm sorry.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [hands Yuri a large diamond stone] I understand, but due to our current situation, we are prepared to be unusually generous.
Andre Baptiste Jr.: You still haven't brought me the gun of Rambo.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: I will see you soon "Lord of War".
Yuri Orlov: [narrating] Vitaly broke the cardinal rule of gun running. Never pickup a gun and join the customers.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I was the best "Merchant Of Death" alive, I didn't own my own plane. I owned a fleet, I was running guns into Liberia, Sierra Leone or the Ivory Coast once a week, most trips I had phony paper work, if the deadline was tight and if I had to cut corners, I had no paper work at all. But I wasn't overly concerned because there was hardly any radar over most of Africa and even fewer people to watch it.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Ava looked at me directly in the eyes, in the same way I've looked in the eyes of thousands of customs officials, government bureaucrats, and law enforcement agents and she lied without flinching because she learned from the best. I can always sense when I'm being tailed. I know what to look for but then I've never been tailed by the woman I love.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Growing up in Little Odessa murder was an everyday part of life Russian mobsters had migrated from the Soviet Union and when they came to America their violence came with them, there was always some gangster getting wacked in my neighborhood but I've never seen it with my own eyes I had this knack of showing up five minutes before something went down or five minutes after but not that day, it hit me it couldn't have hit me harder if I was the one who was shot, you go into the restaurant business because people are always going to have to eat that was the day I realized my destiny was laid to fulfill another basic human need
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] From then on I was a one man operation. I never understood what separated the recreational drug user from the habitual drug user but for the grace of God it could've been me snorting lines as long as the Belt Parkway. However I wasn't entirely free of addiction myself, in my neighborhood the good get out, in our own ways we conquered our own worlds. It cost me twenty grand to book her for a fake photo shoot, another twelve to buy out the hotel. I nearly went broke trying to convince her I was anything but, I knew Ava wasn't the kind of woman that would seduced by a ride in a private jet unless you owned the jet, the plane was a rental, like the car and the suit I was standing in. At the last minute I bribed the crew for the paint job, luckily by the time we landed she wasn't looking anywhere but in my eyes
Yuri Orlov: [Referring to Simeon Weisz] What was he doing here?
General Dmitri: He was hoping to beat your offer, I told him to go have intercourse with himself
Yuri Orlov: You need to make more payoffs
General Dmitri: Too many payoffs
Yuri Orlov: [Hands him an envelope with money] Don't worry, there more VCR's and cigarettes I left them in your car
General Dmitri: Even your enemy was admiring your car, I'm the luckiest man alive
Yuri Orlov: Yes you are
Ava Fontaine: [while sitting in her living room] I don't believe you, can you prove any of this?
Jack Valentine: Your husband goes through a lot of trouble to make his business look legitimate perhaps especially to you. I don't expect we're going to find anything here today
Ava Fontaine: So what'd you want?
Jack Valentine: I was hoping you'd help me. I understand your parents died tragically, the illegal fire arms that were used to kill your mother and father were procured from men exactly like your husband.
Jack Valentine: [to Yuri in an interrogation room] You have broken every arms embargo written there's enough evidence to put you away for consecutive life sentences you're going to spend the next ten years of your life going from a cell to a courtroom before you even start serving your time.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Most people are happy just get out of jail, I expect to be paid to leave but I was back: doing what I do best
Yuri Orlov: Stop fucking around. I want to talk to you, you read the newspaper? Everyday there's people shooting each other, you know what I do when I see that? I look to see what guns their using and I ask myself "why not my guns?"
Vitaly Orlov: Are you going to open up a gun shop?
Yuri Orlov: There are probably more of those in America than MacDonald's, even with all the gangsters around here the margins are too low
Vitaly Orlov: You've worked out the margins?
Yuri Orlov: Yeah forget gang wars the real money is in actual wars between countries, I made the first sale, we're already in business
Vitaly Orlov: We?
Yuri Orlov: I need a partner, I need you, we're brothers in arms
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I always wanted to do something big with my life I just didn't know what. Anyhow, if I was going to go in the gun trade, I was going to aim high.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Even in hell, an angel sometimes makes an appearance. I've worshiped Ava Fontaine since I was ten years old, of course she didn't know I existed and I was starting to realize why.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] A new breed of gun runner requires a new breed of a cop, he knew he didn't have to guard me, There was nowhere to go or maybe he was hoping the locals would tear me apart but they were too busy with the plane. It's like parking your car in certain neighborhoods in the Bronx, you just don't do it.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I don't know how much Ava really knew or how much she ignored. She never asked why a guy in the transport business could afford to give her eighteen karat diamond ear rings I guess she didn't really want to hear the answer. She seemed content that I was a good provider and as far she was concerned: loyal
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] For the first twenty odd years of my life Little Odessa was to me what it was to the Q train: the end of the line, oh I did lie about my name, it's not really "Yuri Orlov" there have been a few occasions in the twentieth century where it's been an advantage to be a Jew but in the seventies to escape the Soviet Union our family pretended to be Jewish, little about my life has been "kosher" since, my younger brother was just as lost as me, he just didn't know it yet, my father took his assumed identity to heart, he was more Jewish than most Jews which drove my Catholic mother crazy
Anatoly Orlov: [after she brings him a plate of clams] How many times did I tell you? I can't eat shellfish.
Irina Orlov: You're not Jewish.
Anatoly Orlov: I like being "Jewish", I like the hat, and it reminds us that there is something above us, I like that. I'm going to temple
Irina Orlov: You're not going to the temple, you go to the temple more than the rabbi
Anatoly Orlov: [to Yuri] Don't forget to check the specials at The Palace.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] The next Sabbath I went to temple with my father but it wasn't God I was trying to get close to. My contact at synagogue landed me my first Israeli made Uzi sub machine gun. I did have a natural instinct for smuggling contraband, fortunately back then a video camera was as big as a Bazooka
Yuri Orlov: [Selling a gun to Ukrainian Mobsters] The new Uzi machine pistol, big fire power in s small package this little baby uses nine millimeter Hollow-points twenty twenty-five round extendable magazines, front and rear adjustable sights the silencer comes standard excellent recoil reduction muzzle jump forty percent sixty percent noise proof suppression you could pump in a bullet in me right now you'd never wake up the guy in the next room of course that'd eliminate your opportunity for repeat business
Yuri Orlov: [When requested by Andre Jr. if Yuri can get the gun from the film First Blood] it was the M60 machine gun, would you also like the armor piercing bullets?
Andre Baptiste Jr.: [insistent] Please
Yuri Orlov: [sarcastically to Vitaly refering to Simeon Weisz] He was selling guns before there was gun powder
Yuri Orlov: [to Simeon Weisz] Mr. Weisz, a mutual friend, Eli Kurtsman from Brighton Beach import export said to contact you. I have business proposal that I thought we can perhaps discuss.
Simeon Weisz: I don't think you and I are in the same business, you think I just sell guns don't you? I don't take sides
Yuri Orlov: But in the Iran Iraq war you sold guns to both sides
Simeon Weisz: Did you ever consider I wanted both sides to lose? You're in the wrong place my young friend, there's no place for amateurs
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] The only option for Vitaly and I was "under the counter gun running", I got my first break in Lebanon after the suicide bombing but I wasn't the only local kid making good, when the United States leaves a war zone they generally don't take their munitions because it costs more to bring it back than buy new stock
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] It was the eighties and The Cold War was far from thawed, most of the deals were government to government and it was a mostly private club with a lifetime club president
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Of course the U.S. army got a piece of the action army salaries were no better in the eighties than they are today and some of the brass like Lieutenant Colonel Southern needed to raise money for their own "private wars."
Yuri Orlov: [Counting money] This is bullshit money, this is small fucking potatoes.
Vitaly Orlov: What'd do you want to do? Go more legit?
Yuri Orlov: No, more illegal.
Yuri Orlov: [On a satellite phone while on a freighter] I need another handle for this ship something in our weight class yes it's got to check out, what? KONO, how do you spell that? K-O-N-O, well that's good, what are we flying? Dutch? Vitaly, get me a Dutch flag.
Vitaly Orlov: I don't have Dutch, I've got Belgium.
Yuri Orlov: What the fuck use is that? He's painting the name registered in the Netherlands.
Vitaly Orlov: I got a French flag.
Yuri Orlov: So?
Vitaly Orlov: Turn it sideways, it's Dutch.
Yuri Orlov: That's why you're my brother.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] They say every man has his price but not every man gets it Interpol Agent Jack Valentine couldn't be bought, at least not with money, for jack glory was his 'price, most importantly I kept a number of intelligence people on the payroll to supply their colleagues with "counter intelligence."
Yuri Orlov: [First meeting] What brings you to Saint Barthélemy?
Ava Fontaine: Photo shoot, at least that was the plan I guess the photographer got stuck in Miami, hurricane though there's nothing on the news
Yuri Orlov: Those things can come out of nowhere
Ava Fontaine: So, the job's been canceled so wouldn't you know it there's no flights back to New York until Tuesday
Yuri Orlov: You can hitch a ride with me if you'd like I'm leaving tomorrow, meanwhile why don't I take your picture?
[Reading a magazine with photos of Ava]
Yuri Orlov: I had no idea I'm sorry I didn't recognize you
Ava Fontaine: Don't apologize I put clothes on for a living
Yuri Orlov: At least you're not taking them off
Ava Fontaine: They would be if half the photographers had their way what'd you do for a living?
Yuri Orlov: I'm in transport international airfreight mostly
Ava Fontaine: Business looks good, where are you from?
Yuri Orlov: I was born in the Ukraine but grew up in Brooklyn what about you?
Ava Fontaine: Williamsburg
Yuri Orlov: If it weren't for that hurricane without it I never would've met you
Ava Fontaine: This is not accident is it? It feels like fate
Yuri Orlov: I don't believe in fate
Ava Fontaine: What do you believe in?
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Selling guns is like selling vacuum cleaners you make calls "pound the pavement", take orders, by the mid-eighties my weapons were represented in eight of the world's top ten war zones, there's no problem living a double life it's the triple and quadruple lives that get you in the end ,back then I carried a French, British, Israeli and Ukrainian passport and a student visa for the U.S. but that's another story. I also packed six different briefcases depending who I was that day and which region of the world I was visiting
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] try to get paid preferably in advance ideally to an offshore account, that's why I choose my customers so carefully, say what you like about warlords and dictators they tend to have a highly developed sense of order they always pay their bills on time
Yuri Orlov: [after agreeing to take cocaine from a drug lord as payment for the guns he bought, Narrating] That drug lord had his facts right after shipping it stateside the return of that blow netted me a healthy profit it would've been even better but one kilo never made it back to this day I don't know what Vitaly was running away from I found him twelve days later two thousand miles away and one hundred fifty grams later in a Bolivian boarding house
Yuri Orlov: [Arriving at a rehabilitation center] Vitaly, I need you to get out of the car I promised our parents, you're going to have a great time two Ford models checked in here last week and that cute weather girl has been here since July.
Yuri Orlov: [Seeing Ava looking at pictures of her deceased parents after their wedding ] I'm sorry I know it must be tough
Ava Fontaine: [in their apartment] It would be nice to have a couple more guests from my side of the family
Yuri Orlov: I'm sure your parents are watching right now
Ava Fontaine: Thank you, but you don't believe that, remember? I know you, I know you're not everything you say you are. I don't want to ask a lot of questions I don't want to hear you lie, you take risks just promise me you won't risk us
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I was still living way beyond my means mortgaged to the hill using one credit card to pay off another, anything to keep Ava in the style to which she had, thanks largely to me, become accustomed to. Then suddenly all my Christmases came at once, whoever said it's better to receive never got a Christmas present like the one I got in 1991 from Mikhail Gorbachev. during the Cold War, the Red Army stationed nearly one million troops in the Ukraine because of its strategic military importance. The day after the wall came down the paychecks stopped coming. I was hoping Major General Dmitri Volkov would open a lot of armory doors and a lot of military bases for me for a start, he was family he was a highly decorated officer of the Red Army and was almost permanently shit faced.
General Dmitri: I can't sell you government property I have to report
Yuri Orlov: Report to who? Moscow? As of last week Moscow is in a foreign country
General Dmitri: There's a new flag so there's a new boss
Yuri Orlov: There is no new boss yet their all too busy squabbling over whose going to get the presidential holiday home at the Black Sea its beautiful show me your inventory how many Kalashnikovs do you have?
General Dmitri: [Looking in the arsenal records] Forty thousand
Yuri Orlov: Is that a four? Doesn't look like a four to me, it looks more like a one
General Dmitri: No it's a four
Yuri Orlov: It's whatever we say it is because no one else will never know the difference, ten thousand Kalashnikovs for an entire battalion your stocks are dangerously depleted you should order more from the factory
General Dmitri: What happens if someone looks it up?
Yuri Orlov: Then we'll cut them in
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Those forty five years of mutual hatred between the east and west generated the highest weapons buildup in history. The soviets had guns coming out of the "demon hole", high stock piles now no enemy. The end of The Cold War was the beginning of the hottest time in arms dealing, the arms bazaar was open, guided missiles, unguided missiles, Mortars, Mines, armored personnel carriers whole tank divisions I even landed a squadron of helicopter gunships: the most sophisticated fighting machines built for a war that never happened, thanks to me they finally get to fire a shot in anger
Yuri Orlov: You look a little lost is the world changing too fast?
Simeon Weisz: I'm here aren't I?
Yuri Orlov: Not all of you I don't think, you've gotten so rich selling for the CIA that you can't seem to get that ideology out of your head
Simeon Weisz: The Cold War had its uses, it kept the tensions frozen, now it's harder to determine which side to go on, and things have become complicated
Yuri Orlov: No it's gotten simpler there's no place in gun running for politics
Simeon Weisz: This current state of chaos could last forever there has to be order instead of cutting each other's throats maybe it would be beneficial if we work together what'd you think?
Yuri Orlov: I think you're the amateur now I think you should go with your instincts, your first instinct
Yuri Orlov: [Over the phone] Hello darling.
Ava Fontaine: Hey baby, did you forget what time it is?
Yuri Orlov: I'm sorry, how was your audition?
Ava Fontaine: They're going in another direction: with someone who can act, is everything ok?
Yuri Orlov: They don't deserve you, it was a rough day at the office
Ava Fontaine: When are you coming home?
Yuri Orlov: Soon, how's Nicky?
Ava Fontaine: Misses you we both do, it's lonely without you here you know I don't like nights ever since my parents.
Yuri Orlov: I just wanted to call and hear your voice kiss Nicky for me.
Ava Fontaine: [after he already hung up] I love you.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] This was the chaos that the old guard had always feared as far as they were concerned I was giving arms dealers a bad name but then they could hardly report me to the Better Business Bureau, Ukraine wasn't the only former state with an unpaid army and stock piles of guns there was Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, Belarus it was all there for the taking
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] My wealth caught up to my lies about my wealth, even surpassed my lies. I could even afford to be patron of the arts.
Yuri Orlov: [Referring to Jack Valentine and other Interpol agents] I thought you were watching out for these people?
General Dmitri: How can I? You keep selling my helicopters you're too greedy. I can't hold him forever
Yuri Orlov: I've got paperwork
General Dmitri: Not for the gun ships, selling military helicopters is a major violation
Yuri Orlov: Military helicopter, it's not a military helicopter, it's a "rescue" helicopter, the law is on our side
Jack Valentine: You're always in the wrong place at the right time we've met before off the coast of Colombia what was the name of that freighter "Kono" or Kristol?
Yuri Orlov: The crew called that vessel a lot of names
Jack Valentine: I need to see your papers
[reading the documents]
Jack Valentine: you type this up yourself?
Yuri Orlov: The helicopter is to be used on humanitarian missions
Jack Valentine: So you're a humanitarian?
Yuri Orlov: Absolutely
Jack Valentine: This is a military aircraft
Yuri Orlov: Not anymore, what can they do with military hardware but convert it into civilian use
Jack Valentine: [pulling him over to show him the guided missiles on the floor] And this stuff over here?
Yuri Orlov: [Pointing to a document attached to the guided missiles] That's going to a different client at a different address
Jack Valentine: So that's just a coincidence is that it? Do you take me for a complete fucking fool?
Yuri Orlov: Not complete, while I hesitate to tell you your job I must point out when shipped separately the weapons and aircraft comply with the current Interpol trade standards and practices
Jack Valentine: We both that is an obscene bureaucratic loophole that's going to be closed any God damn day
Yuri Orlov: But it's not closed and there are men like you who respect the rule of law
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Valentine wasn't the only one trying to put me out of business my uncle had turned down half a dozen rival arms dealers sometimes with offers better than mine but to Dmitri: you couldn't put a price on loyalty
Andre Baptiste Jr.: [referring to the prostitutes they hired for him] Please, my father left a "welcome gift" in your room: enjoy.
Andre Baptiste Jr.: My father would like to meet you.
Yuri Orlov: What an honor thank him but unfortunately I have other business it's a shame, I have a very busy schedule.
Andre Baptiste Jr.: [laughs] It is not as they say "optional" my father is easily offended.
Yuri Orlov: My schedule just freed up.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] President Baptiste was my best customer but I was in no hurry to meet him. He had a reputation for routinely hacking off the limbs of those who opposed him. His seven year civil war has been described as a "sadistic relentless campaign of want and violence." That sums up Andy for me, If I thought I was scared of Andre Sr., I knew I was scared of Andre Jr., Like father like son. The guava doesn't fall too far from the tree. He was also a cannibal, they say Andre Jr. would eat a victim's heart while it was still beating: to give him super human strength, Monrovia itself it was like being on another planet, "planet Monrovia," from the temperature it was obviously a planet close to the sun. I rarely saw another white man and I never left town alone, outside of the town was the edge of hell. I didn't even want to gaze into it
Yuri Orlov: [Describing a gun to Andre Sr] It's made of a polymer composite, many of my clients feel they can get through airport security without seeing a lot of bells and whistles, personally I do not recommend that. On the other hand if you're looking for a traditional "real gun" there is no substitute of muzzle energy of a 357 magnum and of course it will never jam
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] the pillaging didn't die with my uncle. After the wall came down thirty two billion dollars worth of arms were stolen and resold from Ukraine alone: one of the greatest heists of the twentieth century. I did the bulk of my business in Liberia "land of the free," originally established as a homeland for freed American slaves and has been enslaved by one dictator after another, since then, the latest dictator is American educated self-declared president Andre Baptiste Sr.
Faith: [while seductively caressing different parts of his body] We would be happy to make you happy.
Gloria: [while seductively caressing different parts of his body] Don't worry we don't have anything.
Yuri Orlov: What if I have AIDS? Would you worry?
Faith: [speaking softly] You worry too much.
Gloria: [speaking softly] Why would you worry about something that can kill you in ten years where there are so many things that can kill you today?
Faith: How can we make you happy?
Yuri Orlov: [before escorting them out of his hotel room] By leaving.
Andre Baptiste Sr.: I'm not going to pay your asking price we're not rich people besides the market is already flooded with your Kalashnikovs, do you realize in some parts of my country you can get one for the price of a chicken?
Yuri Orlov: But you can't look at the unitary price: you forget ancillary costs, end user certificates needs to be forged and notarized, shell companies set up, insurance purchase pilots and crews need to be hired, not to mention the bribes. You can't get a nut and bolt out of the eastern bloc without a bribe there's one for the nut another for the bolt, this isn't an inexpensive proposition
Andre Baptiste Sr.: I'm going to pay you in either timber or diamond stones.
Yuri Orlov: I'll take the diamonds because it's too hard to fit a tree trunk in my hand luggage. I know your plan for the new offensive, if you can delay a week, I can get you armored personnel carriers, they'd greatly reduce your casualties and give you a significant strategic advantage.
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Conflict diamonds are a common currency in West Africa also referred to as "blood diamonds" because its blood shed is what they usually finance. By the late nighties my wealth had caught up to my lies about my wealth and even surpassed my wealth. I could even afford to be a patron of the arts
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I don't know how much Ava really knew or how much she ignored. She never asked how a guy in the transport could afford to give her eighteen karat diamond ear rings. I guess she didn't really want to hear the answer, she seemed content that I was a good provider and as far she was concerned: loyal
Yuri Orlov: [Offering Sierra Leonean natives free guns, rocket launchers and ammunition] help yourselves no charge everything goes free, don't forget the bullets you can't shoot a gun without bullets EVERYTHING GOES FOR FREE
Mbizi: [to Jack Valentine, holding a machete to Yuri's neck, while restraining his arms] Can we make him disappear? Around here people disappear all the time
Jack Valentine: No, don't do it
Mbizi: Look where we are, who will know?
Jack Valentine: We will, his going to get what's coming to him
Jack Valentine: [to Yuri] what are you doing in Sierra Leone?
Yuri Orlov: [lying] I'm on safari
Jack Valentine: [amused] Oh really? You're hunting wildebeest with a Submachine gun?
Yuri Orlov: You also work with the park service? Hunting without a license? Is that the charge?
Jack Valentine: Why are we playing games? You traffic arms
Yuri Orlov: [protesting his innocence] Trade
Jack Valentine: Trade, traffic you get rich by giving the poorest people on the planet the means to killing each other
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Even before that night I started doing a lot of cocaine in West Africa. I never tried Brown-brown before but then I never killed a man either, I started to feel I've been cursed
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] Even before that night I started doing a lot of cocaine in West Africa. I never tried "Brown-brown" before but then I never killed a man either. I started to feel I've been cursed
Yuri Orlov: [Seeing Ava sitting on the bed naked in the dark] What's wrong?
Ava Fontaine: I can't wear the clothes, I can't wear the jewelry, I can't drive the car, and I can't live in this house: everything's got "blood" on it.
Yuri Orlov: "Blood" on it? What's the matter with you? Don't be so melodramatic.
Ava Fontaine: Don't be so melodramatic?
Yuri Orlov: [She shows him Jack Valentine's contact card] I told you it's political their liars, they lie they lie to make themselves look good, you can't trust them
Ava Fontaine: It's not just them, don't worry. I didn't say anything to your family
Yuri Orlov: I sell people the means to "defend," themselves that's all
Ava Fontaine: I see the news, the guns are bigger than the boys, please stop
Yuri Orlov: it doesn't matter if I stop, someone will take my place the next day
Ava Fontaine: So let them
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] My enemies have finally found a weapon that can hurt me, for the next six months, I stopped running guns. I went legitimate because I made a promise to Ava.
Yuri Orlov: I miss your Borscht, mom and dad say you're clean
Vitaly Orlov: Yeah that's right, you've gone legit? That's hard to believe
Yuri Orlov: Because it's not true I'm leaving tonight on a job
Vitaly Orlov: I can't, I have a girlfriend and I think she might be the one plus I'm thinking of opening my own place
Yuri Orlov: Maybe this will trip will help, its good money
Vitaly Orlov: I've given my word
Yuri Orlov: Nobody has to know, we'll tell everyone we're going for a little R and R
Vitaly Orlov: What do you need me for all of a sudden?
Yuri Orlov: Everything's fucked up more than usual. I can't trust anybody, I need you to watch my back
Yuri Orlov: [Narrating] I was so caught up in the deal, I never realized what was going on in Vitaly's head. Come to think about it, maybe I never really understood what was going on inside his head. One thing I do understand for certain is that Vitaly broke the cardinal rule of gun running: never pick up a gun and join the customers. Only half the guns and ammunition was gone so I was still entitled to half the diamonds ,if I took them I was lost, if I left them I was still lost. The massacre played out exactly how Vitaly predicted but then half a dozen massacres happened Sierra Leone that week you can't stop them all, in my experience you can't stop any of them
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [Opening a crate full of guns, referring to the authorities] How do you do this? When their always watching all of my airspace?
Yuri Orlov: Where there's a will, there's a weapon. Where's my fucking money?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: When it is delivered
Yuri Orlov: It is delivered
Andre Baptiste Sr.: This is not for me
Jack Valentine: [showing Yuri a bullet found inside Vitaly's body during his autopsy, while in an interrogation room] curiously, your brother's death certificate said he died of heart failure
Yuri Orlov: [sitting down at a metal table, referring to not be charged and prosecuted for a misdemeanor ] Falsifying a death certificate? That's not going to hold me
Jack Valentine: You're right as usual you are right, it was your wife, your trophy wife that led us to the prize. It's not her fault she's just easier to follow than you are.
Yuri Orlov: [Yuri walks into his hotel room and sees a beaten, tied and gagged Simeon Weisz, all caused by Andre Sr. and Andre Jr., ] What is this?
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [Referring to Simeon Weisz] A gift, he was trying to replace you
Simeon Weisz: [to Andre Sr. and Yuri Andre Jr. ungags Simeon] I'm not here to supply his enemies, I'm here to supply his friends
Andre Baptiste Sr.: He killed your blood: your uncle, when he tried to kill you
Yuri Orlov: [as Andre Sr. hands Yuri a gun] No
Andre Baptiste Sr.: No? You take part to have men killed but you don't want to do it yourself
Yuri Orlov: [Andre Sr. Helps Yuri take aim the gun at Simeon's head] No
Andre Baptiste Sr.: [Yuri looks away as Andre Sr. helps Yuri pull the trigger] This will be a bonding experience