I’ve watched Elysium over a dozen times and everytime–I kid you not–I cry.

If you know where the sequences belong, help a fellow writer out and drop a comment. This is mainly a play by play of every major jump cut in the movie. The time of the jump cut is close, but approximate.


Elysium (2013)

“In the year 2154, the very wealthy live on a man-made space station while the rest of the population resides on a ruined Earth. A man takes on a mission that could bring equality to the polarized worlds.”
Director: Neill Blomkamp
Writer: Neill Blomkamp
Starring: Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, Sharlto Copley & more



00.00  Lead

00.30  Flyover of the city “In the late 21st Century, Earth was diseased, polluted, and vastly over populated.”

01.15  View of the blue marble “Earth’s wealthiest inhabitants fled the planet to preserve their way of life.”

01.30  View of Elysium.

02.15  Flashback: Max, as a child, moves in to orphanage. Meets Frey who reads to him about Elysium.

03.30  Flashback: Max, as a child, steals. A nun talks to him about it. Asks him, “…to save up for a place in Elysium?” She tells him he’s special and will do something important one day.

04.30  Max gets ready for work. We see his ankle band.

05.00  He leaves for work. Walks through poor, overpopulated city. He holds a kid upside down and steals his money—teasing him.

06.00  Gets in line for bus. Automated police harass him, break his arm, tell him to report to parole officer.

07.15  Frey is now a nurse. Max sees her at the hospital. She has to rush off after greetings.

08.15  At desk, Max asks her out for dinner or coffee. She accepts after first saying no.

09.15  Parole office. 8 month extension of parole. Automated parole officer won’t let Max explain.

10.15  Boss docks him half a day pay.

11.00  Mr. Carlisle, the boss’s boss, is upstairs watching the workers below. Max makes jokes about him.

11.15  Mr. Carlisle talks to investors about his intention to increase profitability.

11.30  Max works assembling and firing off automated robots.

12.00  City dwellers scramble to load onto illegal ships to Elysium.

12.30  Spider’s introduction. He’s in the control room, readying ships for takeoff.

12.45  Lift off of 3 ships to Elysium.

13.15  Elysium. Secretary Delecort is informed about 3 ships entering airspace. She orders the authorization of Kruger. She is warned of statute against this. “I am authorizing you.”

15.30  On Earth, Kruger readies himself.

15.45  Secretary Delecort watches and authorizes Kruger to shoot down.

16.00  Missiles fired.

16.05  Shock from Spider and control for illegal ships being shot down.

16.10  Back and forth between screenshots of characters in different settings—Secretary Delecort, Kruger, Spider and control, Ships’ passengers. Explosions.

16.45  Secretary Delecort informed: Two ships destroyed. 45 casualties.

17.00  Secretary Delecort informed: Last missile missed.

17.05  Spider and control is shocked that only one ship made it.

17.15  Illegal ship lands.

17.25  Secretary Delecort: “I want everyone coming out of that vehicle apprehended.”

17.45  Helicopter lands with police-bots.

17.50  A woman carries her disabled daughter to a med bay and heals her.


18.30  Disabled girl walks. They are arrested.

18:40  Secretary Delecort: “Arrest them.”

18.45  Deportation

19.00  President calls for Secretary Delecort.

19.10  Deportation ship takes off.

19.30  Max walks home. A friend offers to let him in on a robbery. Max gives him a better plan, but declines to join.

20.30  5:50 AM. Alarm goes off.

20.45  Max is at work. Door malfunctions. Boss makes him go in to fix pallet. The door closes and radiation starts while Max is still in there with pallets.

22.30  Mix of scenes: reaction from boss, reaction from Mr. Carlisle, reaction from Max.

23.00  Extraction pulls Max out.

23.20  Flashback: Max, as a child, telling the nun: “They started the fight, sister. I just want to live there.” Sister gives him a locket showing how beautiful Earth is from there—the blue marble photo.

23.55  Max wakes up in sick bay. Extraction says, “…Lethal dose of radiation. In 5 days time, you will die.”

24.20  Mr. Carlisle looks in on Max, says, “I don’t want to replace the bedding. Move him.”

25.15  Extraction gives Max pills.

25.30  Elysium—President reviews Secretary Delecort. Her speech—“When they come for you and your children.” President gives her a final warning not to use Kruger.

27.20  Kruger is discharged. He throws bottles at people. Is angry. Nocks over grill. “F-you.”

28.00  Max stumbles home. His friend sees him and helps him home. Max pukes.

29.35  Frey’s daughter is in hospital. Dr. Tells her to take her home.

30.10  At Spider’s. Max walks in, asks for a ticket. Spider laughs. Max pulls a weapon on him. Everyone pulls guns. Max says he’s dying. Spider puts gun down.

32.30  Spider sells a plan to Max. One job for a ticket. Steal brain data. Max is weak so offers to install an exoskeleton suit. They negotiate. Max demands Carlisle be the mark.

35.20  Delecort and Carlisle talk. “Can you override the servers and place a new president in power?” Promises revenue in return.

37.05  Operation to install exosuit.

39.20  Max wakes, says, “What the F did you do to me?” “Gave you a way out.”


40.20  Carlisle in his office, writing code.

41.00  Explanation of guns for the heist.

41.50  Carlisle uploads data into his own brain.

42.05  On my way to Delecort.

42.10  In cars, getting guns ready. Max’s friend to him, “You nervous?”

43.15  Carlisle loads up and takes off in ship to Elysium.

43.35  Fast cuts: Max shoots explosive round into Carlisle’s plane. Cars chase. Secretary Delecort is informed, calls Kruger. Carlisle braces for impact. Cars in chase. Planes comes for Kruger. More chase scene. Droids released from plane. Synching brain data. Kruger on the way—1 min out. Kruger shoots disc at runner, explodes him. Max and friend in car, car overturns. Kruger and Max fight. Delecort says, “Do not damage his brain.”

55.04  Time of Death: 17:45. Carlisle dead.

55.10  Max runs through the streets with Kruger’s plane scanning the street behind him. An old lady lets him hide under her pig cart.

56.39  Max walks through the streets.

56.55  Kruger figures out, “He’s got the keys to the fucking kingdom in his head.” He deploys trackers.

57.30  Secretary Delecort: “No fly zone for L.A.”

57.45  Max collapses outside hospital.

58.30  Nurse Frey in hospital, talking with her girl, “We can go home.”

59.00  Frey sees Max. He says, “Please help me. I don’t want to die.”

59.35  Frey helps Max into house, tucks girl in, sees his tat (“F+M” under a circle which stands for Elysium).

1.00.45  Flashback: of same insignia on hand in ink as children and them running through the streets laughing.

1.01.00  Frey asks, “What happened to you?” Child wakes up and asks, “Who’s that man?” Frey asks Max to take the girl with him. Says, “She’s in the final stages of Leukemia.” He says he can’t and that he has to leave for their safety. Little girl says, “Want to hear a story?” Starts her story about friendship. He says, “Stop it. It doesn’t end well for the Meerkat. What’s in it for the Hippo?”

1.04.00  Max runs from tracker.

1.05.00  Kruger says, “Land this F’n bird.”

1.05.10  Frey is crying. Kruger busts down door, asks, “Where is he?”

1.07.00  Load her onto the plane.

1.07.35  At Spider’s: He looks at data, tells Max, “They will hunt you to the edge of the Earth for this. We can save everyone.”

1.10.35  On ship: Kruger says to Frey, “You make me want to settle down.”

1.11.05  Max picks up tracker.

1.11.20  Inside ship: “Take a look at this!” Max on the screen, signaling from the tracker.

1.11.30  Max waits for Kruger.

1.11.55  Max holds grenade, says, “Put me in med bay and you can have everything in my head.” They load up with Max.

1.13.00  Max sees Frey on ship.

1.13.30  Ship takes off.

1.13.35  Secretary Delecort says, “Cancel no fly zone.”

1.13.40  Spider says, “Are we back?”

1.14.00  Max says, “Frey. I’m sorry. I’m going to make this right.”

1.14.16  Spider says, “He’s leaving Earth. Let’s get up there!”

1.14.45  Kruger requests entry. In landing mode.

1.15.00  Kruger and associate wrestle with Max for the grenade. The grenade goes off, takes Kruger’s face off. They crash.

1.17.00  Secretary Delecort says, “Apprehend everyone and evacuate building now.”

1.17.15  Secretary Delecort is walking through the building with the President, says, “Evacuate him. This is an act of war.”

1.17.45  Inside ship: Max breaks Frey free from her seat, fights with associate of Kruger’s.

1.18.30  Frey runs into nearest house with child.

1.19.00  Associate runs after them.

1.19.05  Another associate fights with Max, zaps him unconscious.

1.19.12  Child in sick bay. Error. Frey zapped.

1.19.45  Delecort hovering over Max. Scientists say pulling data will kill him. She’s fine with that.

1.20.25  One associate to the other: “Get the boss’s chicks.”

1.20.45  Spider arrives, tells his people, “Keep them busy.”

1.21.10  In lab: Kruger’s associate takes Frey and her child.

1.21.30  Reconstruction on Kruger in sick bay.

1.23.00  Max fights out of restraints. Asks where Frey is.

1.23.40  Delecort confronts Kruger. “If the administration realized what we’re doing, they’d hang us both for treason.” Kruger breaks mirror and slashes her throat with a piece of it. Throws her in room with Frey.

1.25.35  Associates throw grenade into assembly, kill anyone they find.

1.26.20  Delecort dies.

1.26.35  Max contacts Spider.

1.27.15  Back and forth of screenshots: Kruger being suited up, Max taking last of his pills.

1.27.40  Kruger says to get rid of Frey and child.

1.27.48  Max goes to find Frey.

1.28.00  Associate threatens Frey. Max shows up and fights him. Another associate shows up and fires weapon at Max. Max grabs gun and fires back, frees Frey.

1.29.45  Kruger is looking for Max. Max and Frey split up—he sends her to the surface to look for a sick bay for her child. Spider shows up. Max sends one of his men up after Frey. Kruger meets them in hall, blows up one of their guys. Max shoots at Kruger but Kruger puts up force field. Spider hacks doors to open.

1.32.00  Kruger forces door open, runs after Max. Max’s head hurts. They fight. Spider nocks sword out of Kruger’s hand, saving Max. Kruger stabs Spider’s hand into the floor. More fighting with Max.

1.34.30  Blood dripping off Max’s hand, blowing in the wind. Kruger says, “Want to save that little girl? You just need to come through me.” More fighting. Max pulls disconnects Kruger’s suit. Kruger connects the two of them with a cord and pulls the pin on a grenade. Max pulls them apart, tosses Kruger over the side. He explodes. Spider opens the door.

1.36.00  Quick cuts: Frey running to sick bay, President and secret army following Spider and Max, Spider and Max going to main computer.

1.36.40  Spider says, “Max. There’s no coming back from this.”  Max talks to Frey over phone, says, “Remember what I said when we were kids? You wouldn’t believe what I’m looking at…I figured out why the hippo did it.” He hits enter to upload the data in his brain and dies.

1.39.00  Flashback: Nun talking to Max, as a child, says, “Everyone has one thing they’re destined to do, Max.” Fight between secret army and Spider. Lights flash off, then on as system reboots.

1.39.40  “New citizen: Santiago.” Med bay works.

1.40.10  Stand down officers. “I cannot arrest this citizen of Elysium.”

1.40.40  Dispatched shuttles with med bays to Earth. People scramble to them.

1.41.30  Flashback: Nun giving Max the blue marble pic in a locket, says, “To never forget where your from.”

Posted in Writing How-to Tagged with: ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *