Alibi on the Lake

detective

Typology

feature

Czech title

Alibi na vodě

Runtime

94

Country

Czechoslovakia

Copyright

1965

Production year

1965

Premiere

21.01.1966

Language version

Czech

Director

Vladimír Čech

Screenplay

Vladimír Čech, Jiří Marek

Screenstory

Vladimír Čech

Summary

The writer and screenwriter Jiří Marek entered the annals of Czech detective fiction not just with the TV series Hříšní lidé města pražského (The Sinful People of Prague), but also by doing the last part of a film trilogy associated with the characters of the crime fighters Tůma and Líbal. After 105 % alibi (105 p.c. Alibi, 1959) and Kde alibi nestačí (Where an Alibi Is Not Everything, 1961), the experienced Vladimir Čech also directed Alibi na vodě (Alibi on the Lake). This time, the sharp-witted detectives are on the trail of the murderer of a beautiful model called Zuzana. She was hidden by the film director Konrád on a houseboat anchored in a small cove. He then secretly filmed the police search for the missing girl. Work on this experimental film turns into a real drama, however, when Zuzana is murdered. The investigation conducted in the fashionable world of Prague filmmakers is complicated by the fact that almost everybody has an alibi… The second sequel in the trilogy is different from the previous two parts, which were a breath of fresh air in terms of genre in Czech cinema at that time. In the context of the exploits of the Czech New Wave, this 1966 film seems rather antiquated despite its use of humour, particularly in the relationship between both protagonists. Vladimír Čech, however, does not hesitate to use the world inhabited by the snobbish Konrád (played by Otomar Krejča) to criticise his intellectual “New Wave” peers. In spite of this and in spite of a certain ideological bias, Alibi on the Lake has proven crowd-pleasing qualities. Jiří Marek ensured the film was convincing in terms of expert forensics and the internal logic of the characters. The film’s appeal is enhanced by Karel Höger and Josef Bek in the leading roles. Oldřich Nový and Svatopluk Beneš, who were stars in the First Czechoslovak Republic, appear in unconventional bad-guy roles. Vladimír Čech entrusted the cinematography to a leading light of Czech film, Václav Wasserman.

Synopsis

Miss Nováková reports to Major Tůma from the police about the disappearance of her roommate, the model Zuzana. Shortly afterwards, a film director named Konrád asks Tůma to cooperate on a new cinéma-vérité film describing the story of Zuzana's disappearance. Konrád claims that he does not know where the girl, his lover, is. In fact, he himself helped her hide on a houseboat in order to follow the process of investigation and the reactions to her disappearance "for research purposes". Konrád's experiment soon takes a tragic turn. The houseboat is nowhere to be found and the only people who have seen it - a waiter and the deaf-and-dumb watchman Lebeda - do not know anything. Eventually, the houseboat is found lying on the bottom of the lake. Zuzana is found in it, murdered. The police investigate several suspects. Light is shed on the case only when a pack of playing cards is found picturing Zuzana nude and following another murder - this time of the houseboat's owner, Vávra. After that, Tůma and his colleague Captain Líbal, are able to easily unravel the complicated case. In the beginning, greed brought together Zuzana, the photographer Laufr, Vávra and the former printer Rýdl to produce and sell the erotic cards. When the threat of disclosure appeared, Laufr killed Zuzana and Rýdl killed Vávra without hesitation. Rýdl confesses but Laufr is proven guilty by a silent screen test of Zuzana competing for a role in a film, since from the discussion between Zuzana and Laufr, Lebeda reads the truth from their lips.

Film online

Cast

Karel Höger

major Miloš Tůma

Josef Bek

kapitán František Líbal

Otomar Krejča

režisér Konrád

Oldřich Nový

fotograf Laufr

Eva Kubešová

herečka Helena Dvořáková

Josef Beyvl

hlídač Jan Vávra, majitel hausbótu

Jaroslav Vojta

hluchoněmý rybář Lebeda

Ivana Striničová

manekýna Zuzana Kroftová

Svatopluk Beneš

vrátný Bedřich Rýdl, bývalý tiskař

Helga Čočková

Maruška Nováková, spolubydlící Zuz

Zdeněk Dítě

nadporučík Kaláb

Václav Lohniský

vrchní Josef

Jiří Němeček

recepční

Marcela Martínková

sekretářka VB

Miroslav Horák

Nováček

Kateřina Trávnická

Klárka, Laufrova žena

Miloš Willig

redaktor

MUDr. Jaroslav Bůžek

soudní lékař

Martin Štěpánek

kajakář Karel Ostrý

Vladimír Menšík

filmový kritik

Eva Přikrylová

skriptka

Ladislav Knížátko

asistent Rohlena

Karel Cop

scenárista

Miloš Vavruška

poručík Navrátil

Bedřich Bobek

okrskář

Dagmar Dvořáčková

sekretářka

Oldřich Velen

ředitel muzea

Adolf Šmíd

šatnář

Milan Jonáš

kriminalista

Ladislav Žid

příslušník poříčního oddílu

Václav Sloup

příslušník VB, hlásící se jako "se

Marie Grossová

dáma s psíkem

Karel Brynda

příslušník VB

Pavel Handl

příslušník VB

Josef Burda

televizní dramaturg

Jaroslav Čejka

host souseda Kovalčíka, chlapeček

Mojmír Miler

host souseda Kovalčíka, chlapeček

Otto Sattler

hudebník

Vladimír Linka

hudebník

Arnošt Vrána

hudebník

Hana Růžičková

dívka na zkoušce

Jana Sedlmajerová

dívka na zkoušce

Zuzana Schnöblingová

dívka na zkoušce

Milena Geislerová

dívka na zkoušce

Ivana Herglotzová

Zuzana

H. Ťukalová

manekýna

Jarmila Šusterová

televizní hlasatelka

Anna Pitašová

barmanka

Jarmila Orlová

dívka v tiskárně

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Věra Ticháčková

Assistant Director

Lenka Němečková, Miloslav Čech

Screenstory

Vladimír Čech

Shooting Script

Vladimír Čech

Script Editor

František Daniel

Second Unit Photography

Zdeněk Prchlík

Camera Operator

Vladimír Zábranský

Production Designer

Bohuslav Kulič

Set Designer

Miroslav Fára, Karel Lukáš, Karel Smrž

Costume Designer

Karel Postřehovský

Film Editor

Antonín Zelenka

Sound Designer

Pavel Jelínek

Production Manager

Václav Cajthaml

Unit Production Manager

Jan Šuster, Otakar Jiříček

Unit Production Manager

Boris Adamec

Consultant

Karel Kalivoda

Cooperation

L. Pužíková, Eliška Švarcová, Věra Líznerová

Music

Music Composed by

Dalibor C. Vačkář

Music Performed by

FISYO

Music Conducted by

František Belfín (FISYO)

Songs

Jó, třešně zrály /Jailer Give Me Water/, Jsi jak třináct soudních znalců

Songwriter

tradicionál (Jó, třešně zrály /Jailer Give Me Water/), Kamil Hála (Jó, třešně zrály /Jailer Give Me Water/) (úprava)

Singer

Josef Zíma (Jsi jak třináct soudních znalců)

Production info

Original Title

Alibi na vodě

English Title

Alibi on the Lake

Working Title

Je libo alibi?

Copyright

1965

Production Year

1965

Premiere

21.01.1966

Creative Group

Feix – Brož, Miloš Brož, Karel Feix

Technical info

Format

Betacam

Versions

Czech