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Forbidden Games (1952)

Jeux interdits (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, War | 8 December 1952 (USA)
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2:13 | Trailer

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A young French girl orphaned in a Nazi air attack is befriended by the son of a poor farmer, and together they try to come to terms with the realities of death.

Director:

Writers:

(dialogue), (screenplay) | 6 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 8 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Amédée ...
Laurence Badie ...
Berthe Dolle
Madeleine Barbulée ...
Red Cross Nun (end of film)
Suzanne Courtal ...
Lucien Hubert ...
Dolle, the Father
Jacques Marin ...
Georges Dolle
Violette Monnier ...
Dolle's Youngest Daughter
Denise Péronne ...
Jeanne Gouard (as Denise Perronne)
Fernande Roy ...
Gouard's Other Daughter
Louis Saintève ...
Priest
André Wasley ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marcel Mérovée ...
Raymond Dollé (as Pierre Mérovée)
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Storyline

A girl of perhaps five or six is orphaned in an air raid while fleeing a French city with her parents early in World War II. She is befriended by a pre-adolescent peasant boy after she wandered away from the other refugees, and is taken in for a few weeks by his family. The children become fast friends, and the film follows their attempt to assimilate the deaths they both face, and the religious rituals surrounding those deaths, through the construction of a cemetery for all sorts of animals. Child-like and adult activity are frequently at cross-purposes, however. Written by Doug Shafer <dsshafer@uncc.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

dog | cemetery | death | fleeing | 1940s | See All (222) »

Taglines:

"Best Film of 1952" WINNER of the GRAND PRIZE at Venice Film Festival for its Touching Romance, Unusual Theme, Startling Drama. Directed by Rene Clement. See more »

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 December 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Forbidden Games  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,287 (USA) (1 May 2015)

Gross:

$10,188 (USA) (1 May 2015)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Brigitte Fossey claimed that when her family saw a newspaper ad searching for a 9 to 11 year old girl for a film, they brought her to the audition despite the fact she was only 6. She was then noticed by René Clément's wife and the major part of Paulette went to her. See more »

Goofs

Paulette's mother can be seen moving after she has supposedly been killed in the bombing. The movements are especially noticeable in the closeups. See more »

Crazy Credits

There are two alternate opening credits:The main credit starts with a story book and a female hand opens the book to reveal the credits. The alternate still has the same book but this time we are introduced to the two main characters who are sitting by a lake. In this version, Michel's hand is turning the page and in between the scenes he tells Paulette that he's going to tell a story. See more »

Connections

Referenced in AFI Life Achievement Award: A Tribute to Jane Fonda (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Romance Anónimo
by Narciso Yepes
See more »

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User Reviews

 
FORBIDDEN GAMES (Rene' Clement, 1952) ***1/2
6 May 2006 | by (Naxxar, Malta) – See all my reviews

This is Rene Clement's most celebrated and arguably best film despite being only the fifth film of his I have watched; for the record, I also have CHE GIOIA VIVERE (1960) on VHS and IS Paris BURNING? (1966) on DVD and would certainly like to catch up with a few others, especially LES MAUDITS (1947), GERVAISE (1956) and AND HOPE TO DIE (1972).

Apparently, FORBIDDEN GAMES only became a feature film after Jacques Tati's encouragement and, if so, one needs to be grateful to him as the film is one of the most poignant (and controversial) depictions of childhood innocence on film and its influence is evident in later similarly-themed films like Philip Leacock's INNOCENT SINNERS (1958). Clement opens his film with a harrowing and totally realistic air-raid sequence but proceeds with a charming and humorous depiction of simple farm life which revolves around the household, church and cemetery; the latter two settings, in fact, host two of the film's most entertaining sequences. Of course, the paradox of the children's love for animals and the need to populate their secret cemetery (and utilizing stolen crosses no less) is only the direct result of the children's impossibility of grasping the world around them: the children's cruelty to animals (the boy's stabbing of a cockroach with a pen, for example) is just as sensible to him as the barrage of bombs which the "civilized" adults throw at each other day in day out.

The remarkable performances by the two young children (Brigitte Fossey and Georges Poujouly) are certainly among the finest of their kind but the film also takes care to offer eccentric characters for its relatively unknown ensemble cast to sink their teeth in, including an early role for familiar character actor Jacques Marin as the ill-fated Georges, whose untimely death has a pivotal bearing on the film's plot. To top it all, FORBIDDEN GAMES is blessed by a haunting guitar score by Narciso Yepes.


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