The Stolen Battle

historical, comedy

Typology

feature

Czech title

Ukradená bitva

Runtime

93

Country

Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic

Copyright

1972

Production year

1971 – 1972

Premiere

14.07.1972

Language version

Czech

Director

Erwin Stranka

Screenplay

Erwin Stranka

Screenstory

Erwin Stranka

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

zloděj Andreas Christian Käsebier

Herwart Grosse

pruský král Friedrich II. Veliký

Josef Kemr

Karel Lotrinský

Helena Růžičková

Karlova manželka

Rolf Hoppe

adjutant Josef Barody

Lubomír Kostelka

grenadýr Černý

Miloš Nesvadba

grenadýr Nový

Axel Triebel

generál von Schulze

Günter Rüger

Fleucher

Günter Junghans

Kreucher

Karel Augusta

hejtman Armin von Glasenapp

Holger Mahlich

pobočník Adolar von Krusemark

Johannes Wieke

generál von Zieten

Josef Langmiler

von Aremberg

Hans Klering

Wegelin

Fred Kötteritzsch

von Itzenblitz

František Velecký

baron de la Motte

Hannjo Hasse

von Seydlitz

Horst Kube

Käsebierův otec

Gudrun Wendler

Käsebierova matka

Theresia Wider

Friedrichova matka

Vladimír Dlouhý

Käsebier jako dítě

František Hruška

přísedící

František Kubíček

přísedící

Josef Burda

Hladík

Pavel Jiras

Sachsen

Jiřina Kottová

balet

Jochen Diestelmann

vojenský kaplan

Jutta Dolinski

tanečnice

Sighild Pahl

tanečnice

Zdena Hamplová

dubl za M. Málkovou

Commentary

Dubbing

Vilém Besser

hlas Käsebiera

Jiří Holý

hlas krále

Zita Kabátová

hlas Karlovy manželky

Čestmír Řanda

hlas Barodyho

Lubor Tokoš

hlas generála von Schulze

Vlastimil Zavřel

hlas Fleuchera

Václav Kaňkovský

hlas Kreuchera

Josef Vinklář

hlas pobočníka

Karel Houska

hlas generála von Zietena

František Němec

hlas Pepíka

Crew and creators

Second Unit Director

Miroslav Kubišta

Assistant Director

Erich Böbel

Screenstory

Erwin Stranka

Screenplay

Erwin Stranka

Shooting Script

Erwin Stranka

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

Cooperation

Zuzana Folkertová, Ladislava Klusáčková

Direction of Czech version

Ludvík Žáček

Music

Music Composed by

Zdeněk Liška

Music Performed by

FISYO

Music Conducted by

František Belfín (FISYO)

Songs

Kdo má pořád slunce nad hlavou

Songwriter

Zdeněk Liška (Kdo má pořád slunce nad hlavou)

Singer

Josef Zíma (Kdo má pořád slunce nad hlavou)

Choreographer

Ursula Dathe-Brill

Production info

Original Title

Ukradená bitva

English Title

The Stolen Battle

Working Title

Käsebier

Parallel Title

Die Gestohlene Schlacht

Copyright

1972

Production Year

1971, 1972

Premiere

14.07.1972

Creative Group

Miloš Brož, Roter Kreis

Technical info

Format

35mm , Betacam

Versions

Czech

Awards

Vítěz

Festival: 23. filmový festival pracujících – červen ´72

1972
43 měst / Czechoslovakia
Manfred Krug