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The ComDads (1983)

Les compères (original title)
PG | | Comedy, Crime | 1 March 1984 (USA)
Unable to find her runaway son, a woman deceives two of her ex-lovers from her youth, a mild-mannered teacher and a tough journalist, that each is the real father in order to obtain their ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Christine Martin
...
Stéphane Bierry ...
Tristan Martin
Jean-Jacques Scheffer ...
Ralph
Philippe Khorsand ...
Milan
Roland Blanche ...
Jeannot
...
Verdier
...
Raffart
Charlotte Maury-Sentier ...
Mme Raffart
Giselle Pascal ...
Louise
Patrick Blondel ...
Stéphane
Florence Moreau ...
Michèle
Patrice Melennec ...
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Storyline

Unable to find her runaway son, a woman deceives two of her ex-lovers from her youth, a mild-mannered teacher and a tough journalist, that each is the real father in order to obtain their help. Written by Jean-Marie Berthiaume <jiembe@videotron.ca>

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Comedy | Crime

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PG | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

1 March 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The ComDads  »

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(Eastmancolor)

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1.66 : 1
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Francis Veber: [François Pignon] features a likeable idiot called François Pignon. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A wonderful comedy, madcap, yet with heart; Depardieu at his best.
10 January 2001 | by (San Francisco Bay, US) – See all my reviews

This films rocks and rolls, all with a special French flavor, a soupcon of danger, many droll scenes, yet never quite too wild to be entirely unbelievable. Depardieu cannot be compared with any other actor in the world; his talent and the vast number and variety of roles he's played are astounding. He's been funny in many films; he's more famous for his most dramatic, tragic roles, naturally -- but, for me, this is his most riotous role -- and he's the straight man, essentially. A hard thing to pull off well. I liked "Les Comperes" better than "La Chevre" -- the other, earlier pairing of Richard and Depardieu. Both films are quite funny; both actors are excellent here. This film touched a nerve with me -- as a stepfather. Later, of course, the movie got remade in America with Robin Williams and Billy Crystal -- but the magic wasn't there. The real American partner to the original "Les Comperes" is the Danny Glover and Martin Short film "Pure Luck." It's my own personal theory that "Pure Luck" is a ripoff of "Les Comperes." I mean no ill-will here. The "ripoff" is a fair one; ideas cannot be copyrighted, nor should they be -- good writers "borrow"; great ones steal. Well, "Pure Luck" has the same central chemistry; Glover and Short play off each other in an identical fashion to Richard and Depardieu. Instead of looking for a run-off young teenage boy, we have a daughter missing and a rich, corporate dad concerned -- versus a sexy, wily, strong-willed French mother in "Les Comperes." The daughter in "Pure Luck" is chronologically older, in her twenties, but her mind is, well, let's say calling her "childlike" would be overly charitable. The daughter adds to the magic in "Pure Luck" -- in "Les Comperes" the missing son is mainly that -- missing. But that's exactly as it should be, the two dads are what's it's all about. Both are excellent films. If you know some French or a lot, or if you don't mind subtitles, or if the dubbed version is very well done -- "Les Comperes" will reward you tremendously for your time. It's the better film, the more enduring -- because it remains closer to reality throughout, despite much typically Gallic, but still recognizably universal male zaniness. And it has warmth, even romance -- plus the missing boy keeps a real concern at the center of the film. It's fair to call "Pure Luck" slapstick -- but slapstick at its very best. "Les Comperes" may occasionally approach slapstick, but deserves a higher regard. Its insights are much deeper and its comic-view is more subtle (but only so in comparison to "Pure Luck"). I mean, you can't miss the humor here. See both; let me know what you think. Aren't they uncannily similar? Women will probably enjoy "Les Comperes" more, too, because of the strong role of the French mother, her self-confidence, her power over all the men -- and all so gracefully, elegantly done.


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