Louis is a hard working but crazy Paris taxi driver. Today he's finishing work for the summer holiday: his family is going to Spain with his sister-in-law and her family; they're going in the taxi and towing a caravan (trailer). The customs check at the border is pretty thorough, and the two men have some trouble smuggling in the tobacco they need while on holiday. Next to them in the customs hall is a beautiful blonde, who is smuggling a priceless stolen diamond into Spain. Realising that the customs people are suspicious of her, she slips the diamond into Louis' jacket pocket. She has found out where the families are going, so she will find a way to get it back later. Having overtaken them on the road, she pretends to have broken down, and asks Louis for his help, as a ruse to go through his pockets looking for the diamond: but it's not there. In fact he was smuggling the tobacco in his jacket pockets, and has since emptied it all out into a large jar. The diamond is mixed in with ... Written by
This was not the greatest of films, but it's a good period piece, showing what it was like to be a tourist in late 50's Spain. It's a showcase for some great secondary actors, especially the Keatonesque Raymond Bussieres, and the ever present comediennes Paulette Dubost and Annette Poivre.
What I liked best about the film was seeing Louis de Funes in an early starring role. Many of the sketches are glimpses of things to come. The great mechanic, the smuggled diamond in a Cadillac convertable with a sticking horn, the comic stutterer - all these skits reprise in the Corniaud. And, shades of Rabbi Jacob, the man can dance. It's not pretty, but he sure can dance a mean flamenco.
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