The Emperor and the Golem

The Emperor and the Golem is a two-part Czechoslovak historical fantasy comedy film produced in 1951. The film is set during the reign of Rudolf II, Holy Roman Emperor and was filmed in color (not common for Czechoslovak films in that period), because of the international release. It is one of the best known films of Jan Werich, who's performing a dual role of Emperor Rudolf and baker Matěj.


Aging and eccentric Emperor Rudolf II, who is obsessed with finding the Golem, refuses to hear out ambassadors and falls into destructive fits. Later he welcomes Magister Edward Kelley at Prague Castle and shows him his alchemist laboratory. All the alchemists are either charlatans or fools. Rudolf wants alchemist Scotta to make him an elixir of youth and pressures him into performing a magic ritual at night. While performing the ritual, they accidentally stumble upon the Golem. However the Golem can't be awaken without a little ball called shem.