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Jakob the Liar (1999)

In 1944 Poland, a Jewish shop keeper named Jakob is summoned to ghetto headquarters after being caught out near curfew. While waiting for the German Kommondant, Jakob overhears a German ... See full summary »

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(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »

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2 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Hannah Taylor Gordon ...
Éva Igó ...
Lina's Mother (as Eva Igo)
István Bálint ...
Lina's Father (as Istvan Balint)
Justus von Dohnányi ...
...
...
...
...
...
János Gosztonyi ...
Samuel (as Janos Gosztonyi)
...
...
Ádám Rajhona ...
The Whistler (as Adam Rajhona)
Antal Leisen ...
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Storyline

In 1944 Poland, a Jewish shop keeper named Jakob is summoned to ghetto headquarters after being caught out near curfew. While waiting for the German Kommondant, Jakob overhears a German radio broadcast about Russian troop movements. Returned to the ghetto, the shopkeeper shares his information with a friend and then rumors fly that there is a secret radio within the ghetto. Jakob uses the chance to spread hope throughout the ghetto by continuing to tell favorable tales of information from "his secret radio." Jakob, however, has a real secret in that he is hiding a young Jewish girl who escaped from a camp transport train. A rather uplifting and slightly humorous film about World War II Jewish Ghetto life. Written by Anthony Hughes <husnock31@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

ghetto | radio | german | nazi | hope | See All (41) »

Taglines:

When all hope was lost, he invented it. See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violence and disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| |

Language:

Release Date:

24 September 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Una señal de esperanza  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$2,056,647 (USA) (24 September 1999)

Gross:

$4,956,401 (USA) (29 October 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

(Rankcolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Peter Kassovitz's son, Mathieu Kassovitz, has a small part in the film. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the film, when Jakob starts chasing the paper, it is clearly light outside, even though it is 7:30 pm in the winter in Poland. Then, 25 minutes later, when Jakob told to go to the police building, it is quite dark. In the winter, the sun would have completely set hours before. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jakob Heym: Hitler goes to a fortune-teller and asks, "When will I die?" And the fortune-teller replies, "On a Jewish holiday." Hitler then asks, "How do you know that?" And she replies, "Any day you die will be a Jewish holiday."
See more »

Crazy Credits

Special thanks to the city and peoples of Piotrków, Poland, the city and peoples of Lódz, Poland and the city and peoples of Budapest, Hungary. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Gestillte Sehnsucht, Op. 91, NR 1
Written by Johannes Brahms
Performed by Marjana Lipovsek
Courtesy of Sony Classical
By Arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

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User Reviews

 
One of the best movies I've ever seen
5 March 2004 | by (Gozo, Malta) – See all my reviews

NO SPOILERS, read freely. I had long heard about this movie but I did not have a slight clue of how good it really was. Apart Michael Jeter, Alan Arkin, Robin Williams and Armin Mueller-Stahl I wasn't really familiar with many other faces on the screen but everyone stood up to their role brilliantly. This WWII drama narrates the story of accidental prophet Jakob whose lies bring hope to those living in his Ghetto in a time of hardship. It's a sad story but more than once you are forced to smile by the evvents. Missing out on this one would be a pity. Everything about JAKOB THE LIAR is perfect, it's a very realistic down to earth story, acting and script are also brilliant...not to mention Edward Shearmur's really heartwarming scoundtrack, what a pity it has not been released. (the CD) A must for the lovers of the genre.


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