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A Game Without Rules (1967)

Hra bez pravidel (original title)
A robbery in a Prague jeweler's shop results in the shop manager Kubát and his deputy Litera being shot and wounded. The culprits take the jewelery away in a stolen car and that very night ... See full summary »


Jindrich Polák




Credited cast:
Svatopluk Matyás ... Málek
Jirí Adamíra ... Litera
Zdenek Kryzánek ... Burian
Karla Chadimová Karla Chadimová ... Alena
Vladimír Mensík ... Pepi
Josef Bláha ... Kment
Frantisek Stastný Frantisek Stastný ... Franta
Jan Tríska ... Duda
Stanislava Bartosová Stanislava Bartosová ... Klára
Vojtech Plachý-Tuma Vojtech Plachý-Tuma ... Kubát (as Vojta Plachý-Tuma)
Vladimír Chlouba Vladimír Chlouba ... Hovorka
Eva Jandácková Eva Jandácková
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Zdenek Braunschläger Zdenek Braunschläger ... úredník Bezpecnosti
Jan Cmíral Jan Cmíral ... Praporcík


A robbery in a Prague jeweler's shop results in the shop manager Kubát and his deputy Litera being shot and wounded. The culprits take the jewelery away in a stolen car and that very night hide the loot tens of kilometers outside Prague in a forest. Then the three robbers part with each other. One of them, Burian, leaves in the same car, the other two, Duda and Hovorka, take to flight in another car, which soon ends up in a car crash. Hovorka dies in the accident, but Duda survives and hides in an abandoned cottage. Burian is arrested, Duda is traced out by a police dog. Duda confesses to the robbery to the criminologist Málek, but refuses to say where is the jewelery. The robber then begins to shoot and Málek kills him in self-defense. The court fails to prove Litera's involvement in the robbery and the only one convicted is Burian. The disappointed Málek leaves the police and begins to work as a cab driver. Written by NFA.cz

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Release Date:

14 April 1967 (Czechoslovakia) See more »

Also Known As:

A Game Without Rules See more »

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User Reviews

"He's a detective, he's paid to be unpleasant."
26 June 2019 | by morrison-dylan-fanSee all my reviews

During the Eastern European viewing challenge on ICM, I've been keeping a look out for any "new" titles appearing online. Having found Tomorrow I'll Wake Up and Scald Myself with Tea (1977-also reviewed) to be a hilarious, invented Comedy,I was thrilled to find a Noir by director Jindrich Polak recently got Eng Subs,which led to me playing a game with no rules.

Note:Some spoilers in review.

View on the film:

Breaking in with a 8 minute robbery,the skill co-writer/(with Vaclav Sasek and Ludek Stanek) director Jindrich Polak later showed in the staging of physical comedy in 1977's Tomorrow I'll Wake Up and Scald Myself with Tea is on display here in the dialogue-free opening sequence, as Polak runs down the streets of Prague to the thieves staking out the jeweler's shop, who Polak follows by circling them on screen, (a clever precursor to the photos the cops are later shown to have)and grabbing them out of the middle of real crowds with swift wide-shot zoom-ins. Driving to the beat of Wiliam Bukovy's outstanding blend of Hard Jazz/ Electronic score, Polak & cinematographer Rudolf Milic shine a diamond Film Noir atmosphere,lit by intense close-ups on the faces of the robbers, covered with scars over the passage of time since the robbery, joined by crisp tracking shots diving into the shadows which the thieves try to remain under.

Playing the game over 4 years (the movie skips to "Four years later") the screenplay by Polak/Sasek and Stanek weighs the passage of time down on criminologist Malek,whose inability to get all the thieves found guilty leaves Malek with a itch which leads him to cross lines and leave blood on the tracks. Going their own ways after the robbery, each gang members attempt to remain under cover becomes thrillingly splintered from mistrust seeping on from one dying during the getaway, to tense paranoia,from Malek continuing to press on and fight to get closer to them. Firming holding his ground over the passing of time, Svatopluk Matyas brings out a gripping slow-burn intensity into Malek's growing obsession leaving him as the lone figure trying to stop a game without rules.

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