Cargo (2009 film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Cargo poster-1-.jpg
Official film poster
Directed by Ivan Engler
Ralph Etter
Produced by Marcel Wolfisberg
Ivan Engler
Meret Burger
Florian Nussbaumer
Written by Arnold Bucher
Ivan Engler
Patrik Steinmann
Starring Anna-Katharina Schwabroh
Martin Rapold
Michael Finger
Claude-Oliver Rudolph
Yangzom Brauen
Pierre Semmler
Regula Grauwiller
Gilles Tschudi
Maria Boettner
Music by Fredrik Strömberg
Atlantis Pictures
Release date
  • September 24, 2009 (2009-09-24)
Running time
112 minutes
Country Switzerland
Language German
Budget 5 mio. Swiss francs

Cargo is a 2009 science fiction film, the first from Swiss production and the first major feature film by Ivan Engler.[1][2]


It is the year 2267. After the earth has become uninhabitable due to an ecological collapse, the remaining people live on overcrowded space stations in Earth's orbit. The young doctor Laura Portmann (Anna Katharina Schwabroh) is one of them. She hopes for a better future alongside her sister on the distant planet Rhea, but to get there, she needs money. She signs up with Kuiper Enterprises for a job on the decrepit cargo ship Kassandra, heading for an eight-year flight to unmanned Station #42 and back.

The crew consists of five members: Captain Lacroix (Pierre Semmler), Lindbergh (Regula Grauwiller), Yoshida (Yangzom Brauen), Prokoff (Claude-Oliver Rudolph), and Vespucci (Michael Finger). Crew members spend most of the fully automated flight in deep cryosleep while one person stays awake in 8½ month shifts to monitor the ship. Due to the current terrorist threat from the radical Neo-Luddite group Maschinenstürmer ("Machine Strikers"), there is also an additional security guard aboard: Samuel Decker (Martin Rapold). Toward the end of her shift, Portmann hears unusual noises from the cargo bay, and feels as though she is being observed. Her colleagues are awakened, and together the crew sets out to investigate the cold cargo space.

The crew discover a young girl in suspended animation inside a cargo container that was supposed to contain construction materials. Inspecting the girl's body, Portmann finds a "perfected" virtual reality connector embedded in the girl's spine. Later, Portmann sends an account of her finding to her sister on Rhea, and receives a reply in 20 minutes, rather than the usual matter of years. Portmann begins to wonder where the spaceship is really going and what cargo is actually being transported.

It eventually emerges that Rhea is actually a virtual reality simulation designed to keep the remaining humans hopeful about their future; the people in the cargo hold are going to be wired into a large mainframe, which is the ship's true destination. Upon discovering this, the crew decide to put an end to the deception. Upon arriving at their destination and while the ship automatically unloads its cargo, Portman enters the simulation to broadcast a "final transmission from Rhea", which reveals the simulated nature of the planet to the remaining humans, while Decker sabotages the mainframe's antenna.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Blaney, Martin (March 26, 2008). "Ascot Elite adds to slate with Swiss sci-fi thriller Cargo". Retrieved 2009-12-16.
  2. ^ Masters, Tim (5 May 2010). "Switzerland goes sci-fi". BBC News. Retrieved 26 June 2015.

External links[edit]