18 user 7 critic

End of the Game (1975)

Der Richter und sein Henker (original title)
While investigating a high-profile murder case, a savvy but unorthodox veteran police inspector has to cope with a bad conscience, bad health, an overzealous partner, a timid superior and ... See full summary »



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Walter Tschanz (as John Voight)
Anna Crawley
Hans Bärlach
Richard Gastmann
von Schwendi
Friedrich Dürrenmatt ...
Gastmann's Mother
Dr. Lutz
Rudolf Hubacher ...
Bodyguard 1
Rudolf Hunsperger ...
Bodyguard 2
Norbert Schiller ...
Dr. Hungertobel
Rita Calderoni ...
Guido Cerniglia ...
Willy Hügli ...
Margarete Schell Noé ...
Frau Schönler


While investigating a high-profile murder case, a savvy but unorthodox veteran police inspector has to cope with a bad conscience, bad health, an overzealous partner, a timid superior and interference from political interests. This is an existential whodunit, but a good one, and like any good whodunit, ends with a very surprising conclusion, which will be spoiled for you if you read much of anything at all about the movie. Written by LD

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


"I could murder her in front of your eyes and you couldn't prove it," said the master criminal to the master detective. And so the game began...


PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

5 May 1978 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

End of the Game  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


Robert Shaw claimed that he never received his $50,000 salary. See more »

Crazy Credits

Corpse provided by Donald Sutherland See more »

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User Reviews

Mystical and real
3 October 2016 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This "murder mystery" is "more than meets the eye" to the inexperienced.

It's difficult to say "specific" things about this film without "spoiling" it.

On the artistic level, it is everything that is "correct".

I generally don't "and fool. Those of us who have lived in the hood (so to speak), hate to be manipulated, teased, and fooled.

Here, though, it is not to "manipulate", not to "tease", not to "fool", but to "validate" the characters.

What I can say is that there is a "mystical" quality as well as a "reality" quality, and the two do go hand in hand.

That is to say that this might best be called "anti materialism". Here, we see the natural world is a slave to the supernatural world in a way that shows the reality of life at the same time.

A bet is made, a sort of Satanic bet in which a "devil" character applies for the role of "Satan".

Much as the "usual suspects" apply for the role of "Satan" and make the real Satan show them up in another movie.

Except here, the one applying for Satan deals with many factors. He is well blessed, or else he would not be able to begin to apply for a "Satan" role to begin with.

This is actually something that does happen in real life. There are actual factions of satanic people, particularly in the U.S. (though this is not set in the U.S.), who tantalize, tease, and torment certain individuals with heinous crimes they know the individual hasn't the resources to prove, solve, or even accuse.

In this case, Europe is the setting. And the individual being teased has the benefit of being in some authority.

There is much more in this film. I'm not one for twists, but this time the "twists" are not "shark jumping" twists. I don't give it a 10, because I don't like being manipulated at all, so sue me.

But it gets the exceptional 9/10. There is much to like about this film, all around.

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