7.6/10
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2 user 10 critic

The Boxer and Death (1963)

Boxer a smrt (original title)
In a Nazi concentration camp, an escapee awaiting execution is spared when the commandant, a former prize-fighter, discovers the prisoner has amateur boxing ability. Ordered to train, he gradually sharpens his skills.

Director:

Peter Solan

Writers:

Józef Hen (story), Józef Hen (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
Reviews
2 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Stefan Kvietik ... Jan Komínek
Manfred Krug ... Kraft
Valentina Thielová ... Helga
Józef Kondrat ... Venzlak
Edwin Marian Edwin Marian ... Willi
Gerhard Rachold Gerhard Rachold ... Holder
Jindrich Narenta ... Dr. Gluk
Edmund Ogrodzinski Edmund Ogrodzinski ... Stasek
Jan Bobek Jan Bobek ... Emil (as Janusz Bobek)
Ján Kovácik Ján Kovácik
Zdenek Kraus Zdenek Kraus ... Ondro
Ludovit Ozabal Ludovit Ozabal ... Marian
Magda Gödöle Magda Gödöle ... Halina
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jan Gec Jan Gec ... German soldier
Leopold Haverl Leopold Haverl
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Storyline

In a Nazi concentration camp, an escapee awaiting execution is spared when the commandant, a former prize-fighter, discovers the prisoner has amateur boxing ability. Ordered to train, he gradually sharpens his skills.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Sport

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Details

Country:

Czechoslovakia

Language:

Czech | German

Release Date:

12 April 1963 (Czechoslovakia) See more »

Also Known As:

The Boxer See more »

Filming Locations:

Nováky, Slovakia See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Loosely based on the life of boxer Tadeusz Pietrzykowski, who survived the concentration camps in Auschwitz and Neuengamme by performing in fights for the amusement of the SS guards. See more »

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User Reviews

 
a classic rediscovered
11 November 2010 | by mjneu59See all my reviews

Fresh from the archives in a sparkling new print, this long overlooked classic from Czechoslovakia hasn't aged a day in the decades since it was made. With a bitter but masterful sense of irony it tells the story of a Slovakian inmate of a Nazi prison camp, who finds himself spared from the ovens but forced into an even worse predicament: he's fattened up to act as a sparring partner for the camp's amateur boxer commandant. The stark black and white realism of the film belies the often complex, co-dependent relationship between the two men. For the prisoner Kominek every boxing lesson becomes a contest between pride and humiliation, pitting his will to survive (i.e. take a beating) against his urge to KO an inferior opponent, and certainly die as a result. For the commandant Kraft (translation: Power) it's an ideal opportunity to exercise his notions of fair play and good sportsmanship, two concepts which become all the more warped and inhuman as smoke from the crematoriums fills the sky overhead.


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