Film told in flashbacks of an older man's obsession for a woman who can belong to no-one but can frustrate everyone. The backdrop is SternbergÍs surreal and fantastic Carnaval in Spain. In ... See full summary »
Josef von Sternberg
Edward Everett Horton
In a village of the Po valley where the earth is hard and life miserly, the priest and the communist mayor are always fighting to be the head of the community. If in secret, they admired ... See full summary »
Lugubrious Finns Valto and Reino take to the road in search of coffee and vodka, without which their lives are not worth living. But their reveries are interrupted by the arrival of ... See full summary »
1) Jerôme Chambard, a retired man, taken in by nuns in a convent, swears like a trooper. 2) Françoise takes a lover because he has promised her a diamond necklace. 3) Denis, a seminarist, ... See full summary »
"La femme et le pantin" is the most distressingly mediocre Duvivier film.It was absolutely bland ,not even distinguished by the professionalism that came to stamp his later work.It was exactly his professionalism that provoked the derision of the young Turks of the Nouvelle Vague for whom "carrying on the tradition" was not the road to follow.But when even professionalism is in question,what can be saved?
"La femme et le pantin" found the director lost in the folklore for tourists and hiding behind Brigitte Bardot's sensual body.BB is the only thing worthwhile in the whole movie.She is probably the ideal actress cast in the wrong movie.She is sadly unsupported by a very poor cast:her lover is not even handsome ,her father acts like a zombie and her mother's overplaying is thoroughly unbearable.
This is the third version of Pierre Louïs's novel;for the record,there was also De Baroncelli's (France,1928) ,Von Sternberg's ("The Devil is a Woman" ,US,1935) and Luis Bunuel 's( "Cet Obscur Objet du Desir" France,1977)
Do not get me wrong:I am a big Duvivier fan and I have written more comments on his films than on any other director 's works.This is the only one of which I cannot say something nice.
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