The Stolen Battle

Country

Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic

Copyright

1972

Production year

1971

Premiere

14 July 1972

Runtime

93 min

Category

film

Genre

historical, comedy

Typology

featuretheatrical distributionlong

Original title

Ukradená bitva

Czech title

Ukradená bitva

English title

The Stolen Battle

Parallel title

Die Gestohlene Schlacht

Working title

Käsebier

Summary

Erwin Stranka predominantly directed films in the former East Germany, although he was born in the Czech town of Kadaň and studied at Prague’s FAMU film school. In 1972, Stranka wrote and directed this historical comedy that resulted from a Czech-East German coproduction – the Czech-dubbed version features the voice of Ludvík Žáček. The story is set during the time of the 18th century Seven Years’ War. Prussian King Frederick II (Herwart Grosse) and the thief Käsebier (Manfred Krug) serve as the film’s two main protagonists. The seasoned crook convinces the Prussian leader to use his troops to help force open the gates of the besieged city of Prague. But Käsebier ultimately joins forces with the defenders of the city, led by Maria Theresa’s brother-in-law Karel Lotrinský (Josef Kemr) and his wife Anna Marie (Helena Růžičková). This entertaining film, which naturally ignores historical authenticity in favour of goofball fun, is modelled on French and Italian historical comedies.

Synopsis

It is the beginning of the18th century and two boys are born. One in the family of a tailor in Halle, the other becomes the Prussian king Friedrich II. Veliký (Frederick II the Great). Andreas Christian Käsebier takes no pleasure in being a tailor and as a far-famed thief is imprisoned for life. At the same time, the already famous commander Frederick camps with his army at the gates of Prague and in vain tries to seize the city. After six weeks of the battle, he therefore sends to prison for Käsebier and orders him to open the city gates. The thief is just changing into the guard's uniform and is forging his release papers, but accepts the offer anyhow. Not far from Prague, the handsome and courageous Käsebier manages to stop runaway horses and meets a Czech girl, Katka, who together with her friends uses a secret passage to smuggle food into the starving city. For opening the city gates, the king has promised freedom to the thief, but plans to take his promise back. When Käsebier by chance finds out about the false promise, he decides to help the city defenders. He arranges with the Duke Lotrinský (of Lorraine) to open the gates for the Prussians and close it again behind them. Käsebier, however, decides upon a different solution. He gets Frederick's aide-de camps called Krusemark drunk and rewrites the commands for the army. The Prussian army, according to these commands, must stay put after the city gates open. During the morning attack the army does not move. Both commanders plan their revenge on Käsebier. He is caught and is to be executed, but Katka saves him by blowing up the gunpowder storage. The Prussians are marching off and the careless Käsebier is travelling with them in the last army carriage.

Note

The première in the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) on the 1st of July 1972.

Film online

Cast

Manfred Krug

Dubbing Vilém Besser
zloděj Andreas Christian Käsebier

Herwart Grosse

Dubbing Jiří Holý
pruský král Friedrich II. Veliký

Jaroslav Satoranský

Václav, Katčin milý

Josef Kemr

vévoda Karel Alexandr Lotrinský, vrchní velitel rakouské armády

Helena Růžičková

Dubbing Zita Kabátová
vévodkyně Marie Anna Habsburská, Karlova manželka/okradená šlechtična v kostele

Rolf Hoppe

Dubbing Čestmír Řanda
husarský adjutant Josef Barody/pruský král Fridrich Vilém I., otec Friedricha II. Velikého

Lubomír Kostelka

grenadýr Černý

Miloš Nesvadba

grenadýr Nový

Axel Triebel

Dubbing Lubor Tokoš
pruský generál von Schulze

Johannes Wieke

Dubbing Ladislav Krečmer
pruský generál Hans Joachim von Zieten

Fred Kötteritzsch

Dubbing Karel Houska
pruský generál August Friedrich von Itzenblitz

František Velecký

Dubbing Zdeněk Blažek
pruský generál baron Heinrich August de la Motte Fouqué/šlechtic v kostele

Hannjo Hasse

Dubbing Oldřich Lukeš
pruský generál Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz

Günter Rüger

Dubbing Miloš Zavřel
pruský voják Fleucher

Günter Junghans

Dubbing Václav Kaňkovský
pruský voják Kreucher

Karel Augusta

pruský hejtman Armin von Glasenapp

Holger Mahlich

Dubbing Josef Vinklář
pruský pobočník Adolar von Krusemark

František Husák

Dubbing František Němec
dudák Pepík, Katčin a Václavův přítel

Jaroslav Moučka

Miloš, Katčin a Václavův přítel

Josef Langmiler

rakouský velitel Karel Maria Raimund von Aremberg

Hans Klering

zásobovatel Wegelin

Vladimír Štros

rakouský generál Lewin von Beck

Horst Kube

krejčí Johann Käsebier, otec zloděje Andrease Christiana

Gudrun Wendler /ž/

Margaretha, žena krejčího Käsebiera a matka zloděje Andrease Christiana

Theresia Wider /ž/

pruská královna Žofie Dorotea Hannoverská, matka Friedricha II. Velikého

Vladimír Dlouhý

zloděj Andreas Christian Käsebier jako dítě

Jindřich Narenta

rychtář-soudce

František Hruška

přísedící u soudu

František Kubíček

přísedící u soudu

Jochen Diestelmann

Dubbing Karel Beníško
pruský vojenský kaplan

Jaroslav Čejka

baletní tanečník

Jiřina Kottová

baletní tanečnice

Jutta Dolinski /ž/

tanečnice

Sighild Pahl /ž/

tanečnice

Zdena Hamplová

dubl za Marii Málkovou

Commentary

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Miroslav Kubišta

Assistant Director

Erich Böbel

Screenstory

Erwin Stranka

Shooting Script

Erwin Stranka

Script Editor

Jiří Brdečka (Filmové studio Barrandov), Christel Gräf (DEFA)

Director of Photography

Otto Hanisch

Camera Operator

Detlef Hertelt

Production Designer

Jaroslav Krška, Jochen Keller

Set Designer

Jaroslav Česal, Jaroslav Chytrý, Karel Kočí, Herbert Rother

Sound Designer

Jiří Kejř, Klaus Wolter

Special Effects

Vladimír Dvořák

Production Manager

Jaroslav Řeřicha, Hans Mahlich

Unit Production Manager

Heinz Fröhlich, Rudolf Mos, Renée Lavecká

Unit Production Manager

Ladislav Herz

Direction of Czech version

Ludvík Žáček

Music

Music Composed by

Zdeněk Liška

Music Performed by

FISYO (Music Conducted by František Belfín), Kühnův smíšený sbor

Choreographer

Ursula Dathe-Brill

Songs

Kdo má pořád slunce nad hlavou

Songwriter Zdeněk Liška
Writer of Lyrics Erwin Stranka
Singer Josef ZímaKühnův smíšený sbor

Production info

Original Title

Ukradená bitva

Czech Title

Ukradená bitva

English Title

The Stolen Battle

Parallel Title

Die Gestohlene Schlacht

Working Title

Käsebier

Category

film

Typology

featuretheatrical distribution

Genre

historical, comedy

Origin country

Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic

Copyright

1972

Production Year

1971

Production specifications

technical Screenplay approved 1 April 1971
start of filming 6 July 1971
end of filming 23 September 1971
projection approval 24 February 1972

Premiere

festival premiere 15 June 1972 (23. filmový festival pracujících – červen ´72)
premiere abroad 1 July 1972 (Berlín, NDR)
premiere 14 July 1972

Creative Group

Dramaturgická skupina Miloše Brože, Miloš Brož (vedoucí dramaturgické skupiny), Roter Kreis (DEFA), Thea Richter (vedoucí skupiny Roter Kreis DEFA)

Technical info

Duration typology

feature film

Duration in minutes

93 min

Original length in metres

2 613 meters

Distribution carrier

35mm

Aspect ratio

1:1,66, 1:2,35

Colour

colour

Sound

sound

Sound system/format

mono

Versions

Czech

Dialogue languages

Czech

Subtitles languages

without subtitles

Opening/End credits languages

Czech

Awards

Vítěz

Festival: 23. filmový festival pracujících – červen ´72

1972
43 měst / Czechoslovakia
Manfred Krug