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The Treasure of the Silver Lake (1962)

Der Schatz im Silbersee (original title)
In their first cinematic adventure, Apache chief Winnetou and mountain man Old Shatterhand pursue a gang of murderous outlaws who will stop at nothing to find the legendary treasure of Silver Lake.

Director:

Harald Reinl

Writers:

Karl May (novel), Harald G. Petersson (screenplay) (as H.G. Petersson)
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After dealing with the Shut in the Balkans, Kara Ben-Nemsi ('Karl the German') receives a firman (precious passport) from the padishah (Ottoman sultan) before he continues his travels ... See full summary »

Director: Franz Josef Gottlieb
Stars: Lex Barker, Marie Versini, Ralf Wolter
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lex Barker ... Old Shatterhand
Herbert Lom ... Colonel Brinkley
Götz George ... Fred Engel
Karin Dor ... Ellen Patterson
Marianne Hoppe ... Mrs. Butler
Eddi Arent ... Lord Castlepool
Ralf Wolter Ralf Wolter ... Sam Hawkens
Sima Janicijevic Sima Janicijevic ... Patterson (as Jan Sid)
Ilija Ivezic Ilija Ivezic ... Hilton
Mirko Boman Mirko Boman ... Gunstick Uncle
Branko Spoljar Branko Spoljar ... Doc Jefferson Hartley
Milivoj Stojanovic Milivoj Stojanovic ... Knox
Slobodan Dimitrijevic Slobodan Dimitrijevic ... Rollender Donner
Jozo Kovacevic Jozo Kovacevic ... Grosser Wolf
Velimir Chytil Velimir Chytil ... Woodward (as Velimir Hitil)
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Storyline

In Arkansas, a stagecoach is robbed by Colonel Brinkley's gang. What the gang is really after is a treasure map one of the stagecoach passengers carries. However, Mr. Engel only has half the map. The other half of the treasure map is held by Engel's partner, a Mr. Patterson. Even so, the gang kills Engel and steal his half a map. Later, Fred Engel, the son of the murdered stagecoach passenger, seeks help to find his father's killers and retrieve the map. He contacts famous frontier scout Old Shatterhand and his Apache blood brother Winnetou. The three men set out to catch the killers. Fred Engel reveals to his two friends that his father's missing map pinpoints the location of a gold treasure at Silver Lake. They head toward the farm owned by Mr. Patterson, Engel's business partner. Patterson has the other half of the map and a daughter, Ellen, whom Fred is in-love with. Unfortunately, Colonel Brinkley's gang has the same idea of retrieving the other half of the treasure map, since ... Written by nufs68

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Indian Gold! Blood-Red Fury! See more »

Genres:

Western | Adventure

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Language:

German

Release Date:

1 November 1965 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Treasure of the Silver Lake See more »

Filming Locations:

Croatia See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

DEM 2,900,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the very first movie to receive the "Golden Screen" (Goldene Leinwand) for having over 3 million visitors within 12 months. It was awarded on 22 January 1964 at the Mathäser-Filmpalast, Munich. The movie also received the Bambi-award 1963 as best box-office-production, handed over on 19 April 1964 at the Schwarzwaldhalle, Karlsruhe. The movie also received a sum of 200.000 DM from the Federal Ministry of the Interior in 1963 as movie-prize. The main title by composer Martin Böttcher, the "Old Shatterhand-Melodie" was the most successful track in German hit-parades in the 1960ies, stayed there for several month and was sold with over 100.00 copies. For that time that was very unusual, especially for a film music-track without any singers. The music was played by members of the symphony-orchestra of the NDR (Norddeutscher Rundfunk = North German Radio). The theme later also was recorded as vocal track by several singers, including a version by the movie's actor Pierre Brice (Winnetou). The set-location was in Yugoslavia (that doesn't have any Alps, as some foreign critics seem to believe). "Der Schatz im Silbersee" was the first screening of a novel by Karl May set in the American West. Earlier movies after his novels were all set in the Near East. See more »

Goofs

The mentioned butterfly Papilio polymnestor parinda is from Sri Lanka and not from North America. See more »

Connections

Featured in Auge in Auge - Eine deutsche Filmgeschichte (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
German Romanticism on American Soil
8 December 2013 | by berberian00-276-69085See all my reviews

Let me put this topic on a nationalistic setting - namely, that this movie, Treasure of Silver Lake or "Der Schatz im Silbersee" (1962) is strictly German movie and that it reflects a specific historical period of that country from 19th century, the literary Romanticism and struggle for Unification of the Masses. Karl May (1842-1912) as the protagonist writer of the adventure story came from a poor background and strive hard to make for a living his whole life. He was an enigmatic author for Germany, Adolf Hitler admitted he was overwhelmed by him as a boy and Albert Einstein was also great fan of his books. This is purely German phenomenon we have here of both exasperation and charm - viz, Karl May who used to tell his stories from first person had never visited America or the Orient or China before later years when he personally was devoted to Evangelism, whatsoever.

We shouldn't regard May's literature as trivial or in that case that already during his lifetime he has been copied or parodied. He is one of the great writers of adventure literature from the period before the World Wars, together with Mayne Reid and Emilio Salgari. Their Indians are not ethnological North Americans but simply savages prone to evangelization. Their White Male characters are prototypes of the Superman from the 20th century, always justified and invincible. In the case of American Wild West stories their heroes lack historical accuracy although many of the plots develop in mid-nineteen centuries, presumably before the American Civil War 1862-1865 and with no certain American Geography. So don't look for typical Western Film and try use your imagination. I will further explicate myself.

I have numerous historical books in my library on Modern American History but not a single volume about Indian Wars in literary perspective. I have some scattered materials on Zane Gray, Louis L'Amour, etc. but they are top-listing from 20th century and have numerous film adaptations. The fellows we are talking above are firstly coming from abroad (Germany, Ireland, Italy) and secondly, have historical sense that is indifferent to Anglo-American political issues. So they come and go as foreigners, more or less, the only common ground being Christianity of the advancing trappers or sometimes the eccentricity of a visiting European scholar. Women are always beautiful and stick to family values. I will speak by my memory since I have read those books long time ago and their plot is fuzzy in my mind, but Mayne Reid's books concern the period before American-Mexican War 1846-1848 where the titular was wounded in the thigh and returned to Ireland. After that he started to write books (from Ireland) about his past adventures and mostly dealing with Texas sharp-shooters; Mayne Reid doesn't speak about the defense of Alamo or General Santa Ana - which are subject to many American Films and stories. He did write about Tecumseh the Creek and Osceola the Seminole before they were defeated and sent to Indian Reservations. There were two films based on Reid's novels about those early Indian heroes that were produced by DEFA (formerly, the GDR Film Studio) with Serbian actor Gojko Mitic as principal star. The latter participated in the 1970s at some 20 Indian Films, all based on genuine book plots from Fenimore Cooper, Mayne Reid, Liselotte Welskopf-Henrich, etc.

I will skip the material on Emilio Salgari, but he deserve special attention for his Far West Trilogy (1908) dealing with Chief Red Cloud the Sioux, his wife Yalla and daughter Minehaha, being persecuted by American trapper and agent John T. that was scalped by the Sioux. The book was exemplary 1000 pages, with some historical events and personages like Chivington Massacre and General Custer among others traversing 30 years of time. No railroads existing, which started to appear in the Wild West circa 1860s.

Now let's go to Karl May. I will try to plot the geography of his novels and leave aside the timeline which is not very clear to me. By the time Old Shatterhand arrive in Santa Fe, the Great Plains are the last abode of Native Americans. Here still roam consolidated tribes of several ethnic groups (meaning, territory west of Mississippi River and no American States charted) - Kiowa, Cheyenne, Dakota, Sioux, Arapaho, Comanche and westernmost are Apache, Navajo; still further west are Shoshone and Ute). So looking back at a political map today, these are the states that join the American Union after the mentioned war with Mexico - firstly, Texas along the Rio Grande River; then New Mexico which is undivided and later its western part become Arizona. California become a state but at first is sparsely populated before the Gold Rush in 1870s. Between the Pacific Coast and the New Mexico territories to the North lies the state of Utah and then Nevada. Here principally develop the story in "Treasure of Silver Lake" with no big cattle towns and only wooden forts available. The concept of Cowboy or "cattle-herder" is non-existent yet.

Finally, few words about the actors staff. Lex Barker and Pierre Brice (Winnetou) are excellent in their performance in all 13 movies of the Karl May franchise. Herbert Low (the Colonel Villain) is the most popular actor in this movie. He was Austro-Hungarian by birth and performed in 113 credits for Anglo-American productions. Lom died 95 years old in 2012. Thank You!


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