MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Down 11,867 this week

Orpheus (1950)
"Orphée" (original title)

Unrated  |   |  Fantasy, Drama, Romance  |  29 November 1950 (USA)
8.1
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.1/10 from 6,870 users  
Reviews: 47 user | 57 critic

Orphee is a poet who becomes obsessed with Death (the Princess). They fall in love. Orphee's wife, Eurydice, is killed by the Princess' henchmen and Orphee goes after her into the ... See full summary »

Director:

Writer:

0Check in
0Share...

Family Entertainment Guide

Check out IMDb's comprehensive Family Entertainment Guide for recommendations for movies and TV series for every age and every viewing platform.

Visit our Family Entertainment Guide

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 42 titles
created 06 Mar 2011
 
a list of 33 titles
created 22 May 2012
 
a list of 28 titles
created 21 Jul 2013
 
a list of 30 titles
created 29 Aug 2013
 
a list of 36 titles
created 7 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Orpheus" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Orpheus (1950)

Orpheus (1950) on IMDb 8.1/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Orpheus.

User Polls

Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In a snowball fight between schoolboys the handsome Dargelos hits the chest of Paul, who drops unconscious to the ground. Paul has a deep affection for Dargelos, and later denies that there... See full summary »

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Nicole Stéphane, Edouard Dermithe, Renée Cosima
Black Orpheus (1959)
Drama | Music | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A retelling of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth, set during the time of the Carnaval in Rio de Janeiro.

Director: Marcel Camus
Stars: Breno Mello, Marpessa Dawn, Lourdes de Oliveira
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

The theatrical life of a beautiful courtesan and the four men who love her.

Director: Marcel Carné
Stars: Arletty, Jean-Louis Barrault, Pierre Brasseur
L'Atalante (1934)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Newly married couple Juliette and a ship captain Jean struggle through marriage as they travel on the L'atalante along with the captain's first mate Le père Jules and a cabin boy.

Director: Jean Vigo
Stars: Dita Parlo, Jean Dasté, Michel Simon
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Bob, an old gangster and gambler is almost broke, so he decides in spite of the warnings of a friend, a high official from the police, to rob a gambling casino in Dauville. Everything is ... See full summary »

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Roger Duchesne, Isabelle Corey, Daniel Cauchy
Coriolan (1950)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Director: Jean Cocteau
Stars: Jean Cocteau, Josette Day, Henri Filipacchi
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Political intrigue and psychological drama run parallel. The queen is in seclusion, veiling her face for the ten years since her husband's assassination, longing to join him in death. ... See full summary »

Director: Jean Cocteau
Stars: Edwige Feuillère, Silvia Monfort, Jean Marais
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Director: Jean Cocteau
Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Directors: Jean Cocteau, Hans Richter
Stars: Jean Arp, Paul Bowles, Ceal Bryson
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Short about Mrs. Weisweiller's Villa in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferat, on Côte d'Azur, which was decorated by Jean Cocteau.

Director: Jean Cocteau
Stars: Jean Cocteau, Edouard Dermithe, Francine Weisweiller
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In the First World War, when Paris is expected to fall to the Germans, the attractive widow, Princesse de Bormes, organises a convoy of cars to evacuate the wounded from the front, and ... See full summary »

Director: Georges Franju
Stars: Emmanuelle Riva, Jean Servais, Fabrice Rouleau
Documentary | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  
Director: Jean Cocteau
Stars: Jean Cocteau
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
François Périer ...
María Casares ...
The Princess - Death
Marie Déa ...
Henri Crémieux ...
L'éditeur
Juliette Gréco ...
Aglaonice
Roger Blin ...
The Poet
Edouard Dermithe ...
Paul Amiot ...
Judge
René Worms ...
Judge
Raymond Faure
Pierre Bertin ...
Le commissaire
Jacques Varennes ...
Judge
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
André Carnège ...
Judge
Claude Mauriac
Edit

Storyline

Orphee is a poet who becomes obsessed with Death (the Princess). They fall in love. Orphee's wife, Eurydice, is killed by the Princess' henchmen and Orphee goes after her into the Underworld. Although they have become dangerously entangled, the Princess sends Orphee back out of the Underworld, to carry on his life with Eurydice. Written by <P.M.Laws@education.leeds.ac.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

poet | underworld | radio | mirror | death | See All (35) »

Genres:

Fantasy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

29 November 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Orpheus  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

During the making of this film, Cocteau was granted the Legion d'Honneur, one of France's highest citizen honors. See more »

Quotes

Heurtebise: I am letting you into the secret of all secrets, mirrors are gates through which death comes and goes. Moreover if you see your whole life in a mirror you will see death at work as you see bees behind the glass in a hive.
See more »

Connections

Version of Black Orpheus (1959) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Dazzling and inventive but flawed.
10 July 2013 | by (Suffolk, England) – See all my reviews

From its explosive opening where a brawl occurs at a café for poets that's "the nerve-centre of the world" to traveling through the afterlife to the very end, Orphée's mania never stops. It's an incredibly gripping and bizarre film which immediately evolves into a bad dream. It's grandest aspect is the visual treat that visionary director Jean Cocteau offers. The camera is fluid and active, whipping between characters and sets, exploring high and low angles. Though the highlight is the special effects, especially for its time even if clearly channeling Méliès, with seamless reversed shots, projections, wires and point of view shots involving mirrors. The narrative flows fluently to give a rich and inventive story, with elements of innovative humour, with double meanings and exaggerations, and tragedy redeemed. With its ambiguity between reality, dream or fantasy world, it could even be argued that there is no reality and it begins right in the fantasy, though the expert use of foreshadowing renders that aspect irrelevant in cinema.

Despite it having a very compacted story, there's not enough emotional or thought-provoking ideas there for me to understand why it's considered a masterpiece, especially due to its consistent tension, rather than an ideal fluctuating tone. The characters, besides the surprising supporting character Heurtebise with a subtle performance from François Périer, there is little chemistry between the actors, who for the majority of the time give melodramatic performances solely for the camera. As it's a story trying to be about love, this only comes across as a sidenote to the spectacle. There is, however, the fascinating idea of how an artist can be so enamoured with inspiration that they neglect their real life and purpose of why they're creating their art. It also does not show any of the deaths, the films other main theme, which dramatically decreases their potential power. There is an incidental scene where the Inspector is talking to people in his office in which it has a brief flashback while a man is talking of what he's talking about - a technique Hiroshima Mon Amour later innovated. With the dazzling and inventive direction, Orphée is a great film, but too often doesn't take itself seriously enough.

8/10


5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
cocteu is asurrealist or not? miladice007
Personification of death.... sgreek
After watching the film I've realized... paintballgun
No One Is Going TO Respond To This So Why Do I Bother???? makybe_diva
Blood of a Poet and Orpheus willadsenmbec
Significance of the Glazier in French Movies proword
Discuss Orpheus (1950) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?