The Platform is a 2019 Spanish original horror film directed by Galder Gastelu-Urrutia. The picture tells about a vertical prison, consisting of an unknown number of levels. In the center of each chamber there is a hole that opens a view of the common well. Once a day, a platform descends along it, filled to capacity with food. The prisoners are placed in pairs on each floor. The deeper the level is, the less food the prisoners get.
What is the movie “Platform” about?
The main character is a man named Goreng. He wakes up in a cell with a rectangular hole in the center. Goreng’s neighbor’s name is Trimagasi. He has been in this vertical prison for more than a month and therefore explains the prison rules to his cellmate.
Once a day, a food platform descends through the floors of the prison. On each floor, it only stops for a couple of minutes, and the prisoners must eat while the platform is on their level. If a prisoner tries to put aside some of the food, he will be punished. The cell will become unbearably cold or hot.
Goreng and Trimagasi are at level forty-eight, so they only get leftovers. Goreng is disgusted, but Trimagashi says that people below level 100 rarely get food at all.
All the prisoners came to this prison voluntarily, but they had absolutely no idea what kind of imprisonment awaited them. Each of them could take one thing with them. Goreng took the book about Don Quixote because he was sincerely sure that he would get into some place for self-development, be able to read it and quit smoking. He voluntarily signed a contract of imprisonment for six months. He was also promised to receive an accredited diploma after his release.
Trimagasi is a criminal who accidentally killed an illegal immigrant. He was offered a choice – to go to a psychiatric hospital or to this prison. He is absolutely unrepentant and chooses a knife as a permitted object.
When the platform with food arrives on their floor, Goreng eats the required amount of food and tries to convince Trimagashi of the same, but he not only gets drunk from the belly, but also urinates on the leftover food, arguing that this is exactly what people on the lower tiers deserve . He hates the prisoners equally strongly from above and below.
One day, Goreng sees a woman on the platform. Trimagashi explains to him that her name is Miharu and once a month she descends to the lower tiers in search of her son. Goreng is shocked that there are also children in this prison.
Once a month, all prisoners are gassed and transferred to a new floor at random. So the main character wakes up at one hundred and seventy-first level. He is bound because Trimagashi is going to cut off pieces of flesh from him and eat them, as there will be no food left on the platform for them.
The next 30 days the platform comes completely empty. Trimagasi does not give in to Goreng’s entreaties to hold out for a month only on the water and cuts off a piece from his leg. At that moment, Miharu descends on the platform, who attacks Trimagashi and frees Goreng. He beats the old man. Miharu rides down the platform to the lower levels, while Goreng spends the rest of the month eating a corpse.
The following month, Goreng wakes up on level thirty-three with a woman named Imoguiri who has brought a dog as a permitted object. He recognizes the woman – it was she who interviewed him before arriving at the prison.
Imoguiri swears she had no idea what the prison was really like. She calls the hole a vertical self-service center and believes the place is designed as an experiment in spontaneous solidarity. She claims that there are two hundred levels. If each person only eats their share of the rationed food, everyone in the prison will be fed.
Imoguiri has the last stage of cancer, so she decided to volunteer to go down into the hole to convince the prisoners to observe spontaneous solidarity. Every day, she pleads with the prisoners below to only eat their allotted ration and pass on her message, but they only agree when Goreng threatens to smear the food with his shit. Imoguiri says that now people at higher levels need to be convinced as well. Goreng jokes that it won’t work since he doesn’t know how to defecate upwards.
One day, an injured Miharu arrives on the platform. At night, she kills a dog and rides down the platform. Imoguiri says that the administration doesn’t allow people under 16 in the prison, so Miharu can’t have a son here.
The woman is very upset about the killing of the dog and refuses to eat, even though it is their last day on the thirty-third level. The next day, Goreng wakes up on level 202 and sees that Imoguiri has hanged herself. She previously claimed that there were only 200 levels, and became disillusioned with the experiment after learning that the administration lied to her. Goreng thinks that she hanged herself so that he could have something to eat. For the next month, he eats her corpse, and when it’s time for a new cell, he wakes up on the sixth level.
His new neighbor turns out to be a man named Baharat, who is incredibly happy to be at such a high level because he wants to run away. He has a rope, but he needs the help of the prisoners from the upper tier. Nothing comes out. The prisoner on top simply defecates on Baharat to prevent him from climbing up the rope.
Goreng decides to fix the hole and convinces Baharat to help him get down the platform to the lowest level. Being on the platform, they will give everyone food in portions, so that it is enough for the last floor. Goreng thinks there are about two hundred and fifty levels, because he calculated the time it took the platform to rise from the bottom of the prison when he was at level two hundred.
At one of the high levels, men meet a wise man who convinces them of the futility of what they have planned, since it is necessary to change the minds of not the prisoners, but the administration. If the workers at level zero see something unusual, they will understand that the prisoners are living people, not animals.
The sage says that the movement needs a symbol that will rise untouched to the zero level. They choose panna cotta, an Italian dessert, as their symbol and decide to guard the dish.
Going down, the men are horrified to realize that if there is no living person on the level, then the platform does not stop. That is, Goreng’s calculation was wrong, and there could be much more levels.
On one of the levels, Goreng sees two prisoners attacking Mihara. While trying to help, Goreng and Baharat are seriously injured, but they fail to save Mihara. They continue their descent, bringing the much-awaited food to the lower levels.
The men descend to the last level at number three hundred and thirty three. Since there are two prisoners on each floor, the hole is designed for 666 people. Exhausted and injured, the men discover a child on this level. And although Miharu was looking for a boy, the child turns out to be a girl.
There is no food left for a long time, so the men give panna cotta to the hungry child. They decide that the message to level zero will not be a dessert, but a found girl.
Baharat loses consciousness and dies from blood loss. Goreng takes the girl to the platform. Together they descend into pitch darkness. The protagonist descends from the platform and remains in absolute emptiness. The platform quickly lifts the girl up.
The meaning of the movie platform is self-sacrifice. Gorenga, the main character, sacrifices himself at the end of the film for a better future for others.
The meaning of the film’s ending
It’s hard to explain the movie’s ending because it’s too open, so I’d like to give some theories. My main theory is that Goreng and Baharat are dying from the wounds they received in an attempt to save Mihara. Everything that happens after that is only in Goreng’s mind when he dies.
They reach the metaphorical level of 333, which gives the administration a diabolical prospect to carry out their horrific experiment on 666 people. Goreng tries to destroy the system, but sadly dies trying. You can draw an analogy with all those people who gave their lives to plan the assassination of Hitler, but in the end their mission failed.
Floor 333 was very strange. The level did not heat up or freeze when the pankota was saved. There’s no reason to break the rule for just one floor. There is a child who is absolutely not afraid of anything and looks too pure to be at the lowest level. Even if it’s Miharu’s baby, she wouldn’t be able to feed the baby for a whole month. Every month the prisoners are shuffled, so the administration is well aware of the existence of the child. They have no reason to let this child fall into the pit, despite their published rule – “over 16 years old”.
If the child served the Administration for a specific purpose, the film would hint at the nature of that purpose, but it does not. And here is my favorite argument. Did you see the speed with which this platform was rising back up? It does not slow down even on the upper floors, otherwise the prisoners would climb on it and run away. If the platform with the child suddenly stops at level 0 at this speed, the child simply will not survive. What I’m trying to say is that the characters in the film have no escape.
Who is this kid in the movie “Platform”?
Goreng owes his life to Miharu as she saved him from the Trimagashi. But he cannot return the favor to her, and she has been stabbed to death. He is mortally wounded and dies with regret in his heart.
“I regret that I didn’t complete my mission, that I couldn’t save Mihara”
In his dying mind, this manifests as Miharu’s daughter, who is indeed in the pit. Goreng only imagines a child. The child represents purity. Goreng steps down from the platform and allows the child to rise, as he is a message that does not need a messenger.
The end of The Platform is metaphorical because Goreng dies believing he has changed the place. But the sad reality is that the pit continues to hurt its prisoners.
Write in the comments your assumptions and theories about what and what is the meaning of the film “Platform”. We look forward to waiting!