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Orphée
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Orpheus (1950) More at IMDbPro »Orphée (original title)

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Overview

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8.1/10   6,879 votes »
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Director:
Writer:
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View company contact information for Orpheus on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
29 November 1950 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
Orphee is a poet who becomes obsessed with Death (the Princess). They fall in love. Orphee's wife, Eurydice... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for BAFTA Film Award. Another 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
The delightfully lithe work of an artist! See more (47 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Jean Marais ... Orphée
François Périer ... Heurtebise
María Casares ... The Princess - Death
Marie Déa ... Eurydice
Henri Crémieux ... L'éditeur
Juliette Gréco ... Aglaonice
Roger Blin ... The Poet
Edouard Dermithe ... Jacques Cégeste
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
Philippe Bordier ... Young Man at Café des Poètes (uncredited)
Claude Borelli ... Une bacchante (uncredited)
Jean-Louis Brau ... Un jeune homme à la terrasse du flore (uncredited)

Jean Cocteau ... Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Renée Cosima ... Une bacchante (uncredited)
Jacques Doniol-Valcroze ... Young Man at Café des Poètes (uncredited)
René Lacourt ... Postman (uncredited)
Julien Maffre ... Un agent de police (uncredited)
Jean-Pierre Melville ... Le directeur de l'hôtel (uncredited)
Jean-Pierre Mocky ... Le chef de bande (uncredited)
Henri San Juan ... Young Man at Café des Poètes (uncredited)
Victor Tabournot ... Young Man at Café des Poètes (uncredited)

Directed by
Jean Cocteau 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Jean Cocteau 

Produced by
André Paulvé .... executive producer
 
Original Music by
Georges Auric 
 
Cinematography by
Nicolas Hayer 
 
Film Editing by
Jacqueline Sadoul  (as J. Sadoul)
 
Production Design by
Jean d'Eaubonne  (as D'Eaubonne)
 
Set Decoration by
Albert Volper  (as A. Volper)
 
Costume Design by
Marcel Escoffier 
 
Makeup Department
Alexandre Marcus .... makeup artist (as A. Marcus)
 
Production Management
Émile Darbon .... production manager
Jean-Marie Loutrel .... unit manager (as J. Loutrel)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Claude Pinoteau .... assistant director (as C. Pinoteau)
 
Art Department
Alfred Marpaux .... assistant production designer (as Marpeaux)
 
Sound Department
Pierre-Louis Calvet .... sound (as Calvet)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Roger Corbeau .... still photographer (as R. Corbeau)
Noël Martin .... camera operator (as N. Martin)
 
Editorial Department
Hélène Basté .... assistant film editor (as H. Baste)
 
Music Department
Jacques Métehen .... conductor (as Jacques Météhen)
 
Other crew
Sylvette Baudrot .... script assistant
Claude Pinoteau .... technical advisor
Claude Vériat .... script supervisor (as C. Vériat)
 
Thanks
Christian Bérard .... film dedicated to
 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Orphée" - France (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
95 min | France:112 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (RCA Sound System)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Cocteau was 60 years old when filming commenced.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 »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

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14 out of 20 people found the following review useful.
The delightfully lithe work of an artist!, 5 February 2003
Author: Tom May (joycean_chap@hotmail.com) from United Kingdom

It was fantastic that I got to see this film, yet odd that it had to be from the video selection of my English faculty library. So, headphones it was, on a typically cold English February day, in a place of learning.

I quickly took to this spirited, ambitious film; a heady concoction that blends fantasy and reality beautifully. This is truly one of the aesthetically wondrous films one could ever wish to see... it has a visual poetry that beguiles the eye, as well as the verbal poetry of a fine script. This is a Cocteau film in which he goes a bit deeper into his characters; while the acting is 'stagy' (in quite an appealing manner) the use of location firmly grounds the piece in an initial contemporary, provincial French town. Cocteau's camera takes in all that is necessary and no more, in conveying his lucid dream visions. That the realism so convinces, in its way of establishing a sleepy, unremarkable French town, really helps the fantasy to come across within a richly plausible context.

Many touches seem audacious and visionary - the very fact of translating this ancient myth to contemporary France, the brilliant device of having Orpheus enraptured by at times otherworldly, at times mundane messages conveyed through a crackling car radio... the imagery of a mirror turning watery as it is passed through; this is sublime, artful stuff, of a heavily metaphysical, cerebral yet enjoyable nature. Maria Casares is absolutely splendid as the "Princess", an aspect of Death; beautifully sleek and stern, with a suppressed tenderness brought out later in the film. Casares brilliantly conveys the sense of a timeless creature of the ages, despite her being only in her 27th year when it was made. Jean Marais is wonderfully theatrical in his acting; a good portrayal of the flawed artist - in this case 'poet', chasing after inspiration rather than worldly happiness. The overlaps with Cocteau himself, autobiographically, add a little extraneous interest... certain scenes seem to refer to Cocteau's position in France, and interestingly also the occupation, with the leather clad motor-cyclists and absurdist underground tribunals...

I should mention the character Heurtebise, treated deftly by Cocteau; who seems to find most to relate to in his male leads, Orpheus and Heurtebise. While the very feminine Death is portrayed exceptionally, Maria Dea's Eurydice is I feel, seen as quite insignificant, though Dea does her best. It's a shame Juliette Greco gets such short shrift in her role as Aglaonice; much is hinted at early on, regarding her antagonistic character, that is not followed up. Francois Perier is wonderful as Heurtebise; along with Casares the most memorable performance here. Perier really makes you believe in and sympathize with this character, as well as having a matter-of-fact eccentricity comparable to Marius Goring's Conductor in "A Matter of Life of Death".

Auric and Hayer do a superb job fine-tuning and moulding Cocteau's tantalizing vision of art, death and love. The film is technically brilliant, the trick shots superbly pulled off and the atmosphere always compelling, involving the viewer, despite the latent abstract quality of the film.

This really is a film to lose yourself in; a lyrical feat of visual poetry with the majestic sense of dream. It is film fantasy as it all too seldom has been; sublimely imaginative and fluidly inventive.

Rating:- **** 1/2/*****

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'Silence goes faster backwards' kuolevasielu
I have a question, what were said on the radio BonsterT
Twilight Zone movie (spoilers!) SusanJL
cocteu is asurrealist or not? miladice007
homo-erotic kerrydragon
No One Is Going TO Respond To This So Why Do I Bother???? makybe_diva
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