Four regulars at Maxim's restaurant in Paris try to turn a flower seller into a singer.



(based on a novel by) (as Cecil StLaurent), (original scenario) | 3 more credits »


Cast overview, first billed only:
Antoinette Dubois dit 'Frou-Frou'
Prince Vladimir Bilinsky
Philippe Lemaire ...
Michel Artus
Jean Wall ...
Jean Sabatier
Isabelle Pia ...
Michèle Dubois, la fille de Frou-Frou
Marie Sabouret ...
La grande duchesse Anna Ivanovna, patronne du restaurant russe (as Marie Sabouret Sociétaire de la Comédie Française)
Umberto Melnati ...
Sigismond Meursault, le comte italien et protecteur
Henry de Gaspard
Colonel Cousinet-Duval
Béatrice Arnac ...
Jacques Duby ...
Le chasseur
Madeleine Barbulée ...
Berthe, l'habilleuse
La maîtresse de Cousinet-Duval
Le régisseur


Four regulars at Maxim's restaurant in Paris try to turn a flower seller into a singer.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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Release Date:

19 July 1955 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Toy Wife  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


An article in La cinématographie française of January 22, 1955 reveals that the part of Frou-Frou's daughter was planned for Brigitte Bardot instead of Isabelle Pia. See more »


Ça c'est Paris
Music by José Padilla
Lyrics by Lucien Boyer & Jacques Charles
Performed by Gisèle Robert
See more »

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User Reviews

21 December 2015 | by See all my reviews

Frou -Frou is a character who inspired many movies ,from the silent era to Richard Thorpe 's 'the toy wife" (1938) to "the Aristocats " in which the elegant mare bears this name .By and large,the screenplays based on this hussy feature different supporting characters.

Four idle bourgeois (including Louis De Funès,but his fans must know he is not given a single chance to shine)play the occasional Pygmalions and launch a young flower girl's career as a Chanteuse.From a Russian prince ,driven away from his land by the 1917 revolution to a wealthy banker,the music hall Chanteuse becomes a socialite .

This is a fairly discouraging effort: the deluxe treatment (wide screen and color,extremely rare in France in 1955) does not delude for long.An excellent cast (Dany Robin and Philippe Lemaire ,two of the most famous romantic leads of the era) is completely wasted .

The movie consists of long flashbacks with occasional returns to the present when an aging Frou Frou warns her only daughter (Isabelle Pia)of the dangers of life:it is about time! In this desultory tale , the director did not seem to make up his mind: comedy or melodrama?The only relatively interesting character,the painter , played by talented Lemaire ,could provide the movie with good ideas: he appears masked ,in a society he despises ,then dressed up as a pirate ,but the poor directing does not help him at all and he's forced to overact.

"Frou Frou 1955" is a poor man's "Lola Montès" ;both were released the same year and both were written by Cecil Saint -Laurent;but a great director makes the difference :Max Ophuls' opus is considered a classic whereas Augusto Genina's effort is a dud.

The Office Catholique Du Cinema blamed the music hall scenes which featured topless women:what else could they do? Today,only the main musical theme ,the "Frou Frou " waltz ,has survived and is sometimes played in Thés Dansants or wedding banquets

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