7.1/10
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77 user 35 critic
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A conman gets mixed up with a group of thieves who plan to rob an Istanbul museum to retrieve a jeweled dagger.

Director:

Jules Dassin

Writers:

Monja Danischewsky (screenplay), Eric Ambler (based on the novel "The Light of Day")
Reviews
Won 1 Oscar. Another 3 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Melina Mercouri ... Elizabeth Lipp
Peter Ustinov ... Arthur Simon Simpson
Maximilian Schell ... Walter Harper
Robert Morley ... Cedric Page
Jess Hahn ... Hans Fisher
Gilles Ségal Gilles Ségal ... Giulio the Human Fly
Akim Tamiroff ... Gerven - the Cook
Titos Vandis ... Harback (as Titos Wandis)
Ege Ernart Ege Ernart ... Maj. Ali Tufan
Senih Orkan ... First Shadow
Ahmet Danyal Topatan Ahmet Danyal Topatan ... Second Shadow
Joe Dassin Joe Dassin ... Josef (as Joseph Dassin)
Despo Diamantidou ... Voula
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Storyline

A small-time con-man with passport problems gets mixed up with a gang of world-class jewelry thieves plotting to rob the Topkapi museum in Istanbul. Turkish intelligence, suspecting arms smuggling, gets involved, and under pressure the con-man rises to heights he'd never dreamed of. Written by David Carroll <davidc@atom.ansto.gov.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Come on--you're cut in on the theft of the century! See more »


Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French | Turkish | German | Greek | Italian

Release Date:

2 September 1964 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

A Topkapi kincse See more »

Filming Locations:

Turkey See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$7,000,000, 31 December 1964
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Filmways Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jules Dassin originally planned to cast Peter Sellers as Arthur Simpson and hoped to cast Orson Welles as Cedric Page. Welles refused this role and Sellers later dropped out, to be replaced by Peter Ustinov (whom Sellers had, in turn, replaced in The Pink Panther (1963). See more »

Goofs

At runtime 00:57 when Arthur pulls the couch by a rope Elizabeth sits and lays in three different positions depending on which camera shows the scene. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Elizabeth Lipp: It can be done! That's the way it can be done! Aaah... oh, excuse me; I've just had a great idea - something I've been looking for a long time... a very long time.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the beginning, the title and the technical credits are shown, but no credit is given to the actors or to the producer-director. However, at the end, (spoiler) we suddenly see the words "There they go again!", and all of the leading actors appear in a snowbound setting, together with their names. Then the names of all of the other actors, together with the name of the producer-director, appear on the screen. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pare, kosme! (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

The Stars and Stripes Forever
(uncredited) (1896)
Written by John Philip Sousa
Played when Elizabeth steps on Cedric's mock-up of the security platform
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Astounding film about a heist with pretty humor
27 April 2005 | by ma-cortesSee all my reviews

The film talks a hold-up to Turkish museum carried out by a motley group : Melina Mercouri , Maximiliam Schell , Jess Hahn , Gilles Segal . They are pursued by a chief policeman who blackmails to Peter Ustinov to get undercover in the band.

From the beginning until ending the good mood and humor is continued . The plot is very amusing and the final has got an extraordinary surprise . In the movie there are comedy , action , tongue-in-cheek , giggles and results to be very bemusing . The highlight and great climax , of course , is the heist which is developed with imposing tension and intrigue . The robbing has been imitated thousand times in European films as well as American movies (Mission impossible). This picture along with ¨Rififi¨(also by Jules Dassin) created during the 60s and forward an authentic genre .

The title of the film refers to the Topkapi palace built by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II in 1459, after the fall of the Byzantine Empire , the Ottoman sultans made their main residence in the Topkapi palace for 400 years , it became a museum in 1924 . The motion picture attained a lot of success and originated copies , rip offs and awful imitations . Actors's interpretation are excellent , Peter Ustinov is magnificent and Robert Morley is top-notch specially . Manos Hadjidakis' musical score is cheerful and enjoyable . The picture was very well directed by Jules Dassin (Melina Mercouri's husband).

The yarn will appeal to comedy enthusiasts and robbery genre fans . Rating : Above average . Well worth watching .


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