6.9/10
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52 user 33 critic

Kafka (1991)

Trailer
1:23 | Trailer
Kafka works during the day at an insurance company, where events lead him to discover a mysterious underground society with strange suppressive goals.

Director:

Steven Soderbergh

Writer:

Lem Dobbs
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy Irons ... Kafka
Theresa Russell ... Gabriela
Joel Grey ... Burgel
Ian Holm ... Doctor Murnau
Jeroen Krabbé ... Bizzlebek
Armin Mueller-Stahl ... Grubach
Alec Guinness ... The Chief Clerk
Brian Glover ... Castle Henchman
Keith Allen ... Assistant Ludwig
Simon McBurney ... Assistant Oscar
Robert Flemyng ... The Keeper of the Files
Matyelok Gibbs Matyelok Gibbs ... Concierge
Ion Caramitru ... Solemn Anarchist
Hilde Van Mieghem ... Female Anarchist (as Hilde Van Meighem)
Jan Nemejovský ... Mustachioed Anarchist
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Storyline

Kafka, an insurance worker gets embroiled in an underground group after a co-worker is murdered. The underground group is responsible for bombings all over town, attempting to thwart a secret organization that controls the major events in society. He eventually penetrates the secret organization and must confront them. Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France | USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 November 1991 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Кафка See more »

Filming Locations:

Czech Republic See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$11,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$40,814, 6 December 1991, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,059,071
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

Jeremy Irons does not exactly play Franz Kafka in this movie. He plays a man named Kafka, who (like Franz Kafka) works in an insurance firm, and has an unsuccessful writing career, and an estrangement from his father, to whom he writes a long letter. However, no first name is ever given for this character, nor is it ever stated that the action takes place in Franz Kafka's home city of Prague, although various landmarks are shown. Furthermore, various biographical details are incorrect. Kafka is said to have been twice engaged to a woman named Anna, whereas Franz Kafka's fiancée (whom he never married) was called Felice Bauer, and he also mentions to a friend that he is, in 1919, working on a story about a man who is changed into a gigantic beetle, when Franz Kafka's famous story "Metamorphosis" was actually published in 1914, one of the few works of his to be published in his lifetime. See more »

Quotes

Franz Kafka: I write by myself... for myself.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Walk With The Anarchists
Composed by Cliff Martinez
(p) & © 1992 Virgin Records America, Inc.
distributed by WEA through arrangement with Atlantic Records.
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Definitely not a case of "sophomore slump"
4 October 2001 | by craigjclarkSee all my reviews

Some see this film as a step down from Steven Soderbergh's brilliantly-constructed debut feature, "sex, lies and videotape." I see it as a significant step in his artistic development (even if its commercial and critical failure limited the audiences for his next several films). Certainly no one expected him to follow the low-key, character-driven "sex, lies" with such a complicated, stylized film as "Kafka."

An inspired script by Lem Dobbs and a great cast drive Soderbergh's visually rich film. Besides the leads, of note are Joel Grey as the self-important bureaucrat Burgel, Brian Glover as the menacing Castle Henchman, and Keith Allen and Simon McBurney as Kafka's side-splittingly incompetent "assistants." And Cliff Martinez's score (inspired by "The Third Man") is ingenious.

To call this film underrated would be a severe understatement.


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