The Comte de Gonzague schemes against his cousin, the Duc de Nevers, even though he is the Duke's heir and will inherit his estates. The Count has kept secret the existence of the Duke's ... See full summary »
Barnie lives in Calais but works in London. Everyday, he takes the Eurostar to go to his office. Although he is married to Lucie, Barnie has two lovers in London: Margot, a young and fresh ... See full summary »
Francois Merlin is an espionnage-book writer. He likes to mix every-day character he can met in his book. In his book, he is Bob Saint Clar, his neighbour Christine appears as Tatiana and ... See full summary »
On an observatory set high on a mountain, astronomers make a stunning discovery somewhere out in the galaxy. A flying object in the depths of the cosmos is showing signs of life, emitting an intelligent signal. The UFO has just landed on Earth somewhere in the midst of a rainforest. Margot, the enthusiastic young woman heading up the research team, decides to go to the spot and check out this ... See full summary »
Philippe de Broca
Three adolescents, a girl who serves as the priming and two boys, kill two men cold blooded who were known by the girl only for to steal the money of them. With the money the three want to ... See full summary »
Colonel Chabert has been severely wounded in the French-Russian Napoleonic war to the point that the medical examiner has signed his death certificate. When he regains his health and memory... See full summary »
Antoine, a professor of Greek, and Lise, a police inspector, honeymoon in Greece. There they meet a young couple, Charles, an archaeologist, and Agnes, a dishy flirt. Charles unearths the ... See full summary »
Philippe de Broca
The Comte de Gonzague schemes against his cousin, the Duc de Nevers, even though he is the Duke's heir and will inherit his estates. The Count has kept secret the existence of the Duke's bastard, recently born. When the Duke learns of his child, he journeys to wed the mother, a baron's daughter, in her father's isolated chateau. The occupants of the castle are surprised and murdered by the Count and his men. The only ones to escape are the Duke's friend, the skilled swordsman Lagardère, and the infant, a girl, now the rightful heiress to the Duke's vast fortune. The Count believes the pair to have drowned, when in fact they have been concealed by a travelling troupe of Italian players. Twenty years pass. The Count has discovered that the two survive and seeks to have them slain. But Lagardère gains the confidence of the Count, and employment as his bookkeeper, through his clever disguise as a hunch-back... Written by
De Broca, who had made the marvelous swashbuckler CARTOUCHE (1962), returns to the genre after 35 years with this unexpectedly old-fashioned and highly entertaining romp.
Daniel Auteil is the unlikely hero, who is also called on to show his versatility as an actor by dressing up as the titular character. He's supported by a good cast: Vincent Perez as a womanizing aristocrat, Fabrice Luchini as a somewhat reticent villain and Philippe Noiret as a Regent; lovely Marie Gillain is Auteil's improbable love interest (she was raised by him after being saved from death's clutches).
The film's theatrical milieu brings forth obvious comparisons with SCARAMOUCHE (1952) but the sumptuous décor, Philippe Sarde's rousing score and a plot-packed narrative keep one watching. In fact, it was so well-received at the time of its release as to be nominated for several international film awards!
De Broca is a distinguished French film-maker but, unfortunately, very little of his early work is available for reassessment; I've only watched 5 myself (including this one) and all proved to be well worth watching.
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