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The Story of a Cheat (1936)
"Le roman d'un tricheur" (original title)

7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 1,038 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 16 critic

Life story of a charming scoundrel, with little dialogue other than the star/director's witty narration. As a boy, only he survives a family tragedy when he's deprived of supper (poisonous ... See full summary »

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Title: The Story of a Cheat (1936)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Sacha Guitry ...
Le tricheur / The Cheat (mature)
Marguerite Moreno ...
L'aventurière / The Countess
Jacqueline Delubac ...
Henriette
...
Serge Abramovich
Rosine Deréan ...
La voleuse / The Jewel Thief
Elmire Vautier ...
L'aventuriere, jeune fille / The Countess (younger)
Serge Grave ...
Le tricheur, petit garçon / The Cheat, as a boy
Pauline Carton ...
Mme Morlot - la tante
Fréhel ...
La chanteuse / Redhead (singer)
Pierre Labry ...
M. Morlot
Pierre Assy ...
Le trichur, jeune homme / The Cheat (young man)
Henri Pfeifer ...
M. Charbonnier
Gaston Dupray ...
Le garçon de café / Waiter
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Adolphe Borchard ...
Himself (in prologue)
Myriam Borsoutsky ...
Herself (in prologue)
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Storyline

Life story of a charming scoundrel, with little dialogue other than the star/director's witty narration. As a boy, only he survives a family tragedy when he's deprived of supper (poisonous mushrooms!) for stealing...concluding that dishonesty pays. Through years of dabbling in crime and amusing adventures, two women appear and reappear in his life, a dazzling blonde jewel thief and a stunning brunette gambler. Finally, he meets the mysterious Charbonnier who had saved his life in World War I, leading to the surprising next phase in his career... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

Official Sites:

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Release Date:

26 September 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Story of a Cheat  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

Most of the credits are not printed but spoken in the director's opening narration. See more »

Soundtracks

Et v'là pourquoi
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Sacha Guitry
Music by Adolphe Borchard
Performed by Fréhel
See more »

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User Reviews

 
This felt like a light comedy...without much comedy.
16 February 2012 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This is not my Sacha Guitry film and I know that back in the 1930s he was a sort of auteur--directing, writing and starring in a bunch of light comedies. So, I can compare this film to several of his others and see it comes up very short. The bottom line is that the film starts off with great promise but never really pays off--and at the end it just sort of fizzles.

"The Story of a Cheat" begins with Guitry sitting at an outdoor café and writing his memoirs. This ruse is used to enable him to narrate his life story for the audience. It starts off exceptionally well--with Guitry learning a lesson when very young that being bad pays off very well! This sort of tongue-in-cheek look at evil would have been great but the film never sustained this. Instead of being a true cheat, the leading man vacillated back and forth and there was never any sort of payoff for the audience. And, instead of the ending making sense of all this, it left me very cold. A clear misfire--mostly because the script needed work. Making the leading man a complete scoundrel would have improved it immensely--such as the way Terry-Thomas behaved in a few of his films such as "School for Scoundrels" or "Too Many Crooks".


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