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A love triangle between a young woman, a rich 60-something man and an aspiring sailor set in early 20th century Marseilles.



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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 1 win & 11 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview:
Georgette Anys ...
Salvatore Baccaloni ...
Raymond Bussières ...
The Admiral (as Raymond Bussieres)
Joël Flateau ...
Cesario (Fanny's Son) (as Joel Flateau)
Panisse's Elder Brother
Paul Bonifas ...
The Postman


Almost 19-year-old Marius feels himself in a rut in Marseille, his life planned for him by his cafe'-owning father, and he longs for the sea. The night before he is to leave on a 5-year voyage, Fanny, a girl he grew up with, reveals that she is in love with him, and he discovers that he is in love with her. He must choose between an exciting life at sea, and a boring life with the woman he loves. And Fanny must choose between keeping the man she loves, and letting him live the life he seems to want. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Drama | Romance


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 June 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Eine Liebe in Marseille  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


The east side of the port at Marseilles had not been touched in decades, making it a perfect location for a period film like this. But the west side had been rebuilt after World War II. Originally, art director Rino Mondellini got permission from the mayor to put false fronts on the new buildings. When he started drilling holes in the sidewalk for the posts that would support the facades, however, the townspeople objected, and the mayor rescinded his permission. Mondellini called the eighteen holes he had already made "The most expensive golf course in the world". See more »


During the opening credits, the captain makes several turns of the wheel which would have caused the ferry to turn while crossing the harbor. The shots through the ferry showing the background and the overhead shot reflect no change in the straight line course. See more »


Panisse: It's not dying I mind. It's giving up life that annoys me.
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Remake of César (1936) See more »


(Main Theme)
Music & Lyrics by Harold Rome
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User Reviews

marvelous--both charming and poignant
5 June 2005 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

This is my favorite Leslie Caron movie. I like it even better than the wonderful "Gigi"--and that's saying a lot.

There are several elements of the movie that are outstanding. The cinematography and music combine to make an incredibly artistic film that helps to convey the love and sadness of the young lovers. The acting is generally top-notch--especially the supporting roles played by Charles Boyer and Maurice Chavalier. But most importantly, the overriding theme is unusual and profound (illegitimacy and the choices you make once this unwanted pregnancy occurs). This makes this film very adult in sensibilities and yet a good family picture as well---I certainly would want my daughters to see and learn from Fanny and Marius' experiences.

This movie has so many wonderful moments (such as Panisse's utter devotion and acceptance of Fanny and her baby, Cesar's confrontation of Marius near the end of the flick or Panisse and Cesar's game with the hat in the street) and overall it can't help but satisfy.

One of the absolute best films of the 1960s--though how it's becomes somewhat forgotten is beyond me.

36 of 37 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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