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Black and White in Color (1976)

La victoire en chantant (original title)
PG | | Comedy, Drama, War | 8 May 1977 (USA)
French colonists in Africa, several months behind in the news, find themselves at war with their German neighbors. Deciding that they must do their proper duty and fight the Germans, they ... See full summary »
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Sergeant Bosselet
Jacques Dufilho ...
Paul Rechampot
Catherine Rouvel ...
Marinette
Jacques Spiesser ...
Hubert Fresnoy
Maurice Barrier ...
Caprice
Benjamin Memel Atchory ...
Assomption
Peter Berling ...
Père Jean de la Croix
Marius Beugre Boignan ...
Barthelmy
Claude Legros ...
Jacques Rechampot
Dora Doll ...
Maryvonne
Baye Macoumba Diop ...
Lamartine
Jacques Monnet ...
Père Simon
Dieter Schidor ...
Kraft
Aboubakar Toine ...
Fidele
Marc Zuber ...
Major Anglais
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Storyline

French colonists in Africa, several months behind in the news, find themselves at war with their German neighbors. Deciding that they must do their proper duty and fight the Germans, they promptly conscript the local native population. Issuing them boots and rifles, the French attempt to make "proper" soldiers out of the Africans. A young, idealistic French geographer seems to be the only rational person in the town, and he takes over control of the "war" after several bungles on the part of the others. Written by Carl Seiler <lcs9549@tamsun.tamu.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Language:

Release Date:

8 May 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Black and White in Color  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original French title of this movie was "La Victoire en Chantant" (Victory, as she sings), the first line of the famous patriotic song "Le chant du Départ" (The Farewell Hymn), written in 1794 during the French Revolution and nicknamed "the Marseillaise's twin". The untranslatable title became "Black and White in Colour" which was later re-translated literally. See more »

Quotes

Hubert Fresnoy: [writing a letter] To Lucien Herr, College of Advanced Education, 45 rue d'Ulm, Fifth Arrondissement, Paris, in care of Administrator Tarato. St. Pierre de Samba, French Equatorial Africa. Fort Coulais, January 6, 1915. Dear teacher, and if I may, dear friend. Here is my punishment for not excelling in nobler fields of study. I should be teaching Greek in one of those pleasant schools of which our province is so proud but instead here I am under a summer sky wandering through virgin savannahs ...
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Connections

Featured in The 79th Annual Academy Awards (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

 
And the officer wasn't even British
6 August 1999 | by (Antwerp, Belgium) – See all my reviews

Fall of 1914. French and Germans, living in colonies side by side (Togo or Cameroon, take your pick), feel compelled to be at war with each other since that is what's happening back home, too. Naively and almost playfully at first, until the game starts getting uglier and they experience the horror of casualties nobody had really wanted. Both sides get professional help and they become hardened by the everyday routine (the Germans winning, because their officer studied in Heidelberg...)and start killing each other more efficiently, until finally the war ends and the British arrive to restore law and order in the territories. The long column of British troops, all Africans and Asians, is led by one junior officer on horseback - who when his face is eventually revealed, turns out to be Indian.

Annaud shot the film in the Ivory Coast, then a very staunchly pro-French country. He refused to show anybody the script and pretended he was shooting a very different type of movie. At the gala premiere performance in Abidjan, when the French officials realized the entire picture was a spoof on French colonial policies, they walked out, much to the embarrassment of the Ivorians, who were just as unaware of what Annaud had been up to...


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