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 »
The story of a Parisian psychiatrist (Auteuil) who is treating a patient who confesses to having killed his wife. At first the psychiatrist lends little credence to his unusual client but ... See full summary »
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 »
In the 18th century, Louis de Bourguignon is working with the Malichot's gang, but their ways are too 'unethical' for him. He creates his own band, acting under the name of Cartouche, ... See full summary »
As the Ottoman Empire comes to an end, an old servant spins a tale to keep the women in the Sultan's harem distracted. The story is about Safiye, who first becomes the Sultan's favorite ... 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
Xavier Lombard is a world-weary private eye in London, in exile from his native Paris; his best friend is Nathalie, a high-class call girl. He gets a call from an old friend from the Paris ... See full summary »
Farce, spy spoof, and adventure. Swarthy thieves ignore jewels to steal an Amazon figurine from the Museum of Man in Paris' Trocadero Palace and kidnap the world's authority on the lost ... 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
Period Romp through early 18th Century France - c'est magnifique!
Not a deep film in any sense but a magnificently entertaining one nevertheless. Witty and fast-paced, it bears comparison with the highly popular 'Taxi' films. Probably my favourite French film in terms of the sheer pleasure it has given me.
Set in the France of Louis XIV and the Regency which followed his death c.1699 - c.1720, it contains a fair degree of historical accuracy. Philippe d'Orleans, Regent of France (Philippe Noiret) has a central role as the arbiter of justice who ultimately allows good to triumph over evil. This is an unabashedly romantic view of absolutist France and one should not delve too deeply into the world that is recreated here. Like Robin Hood movies, the historical backcloth provides the setting for a good swashbuckle with an underdog hero eventually triumphing over a high-born villain against all the odds.
The later plot revolves around the Louisiana scheme which saw fortunes won and lost in an early example of stock market speculation - a French equivalent of the British South Sea Bubble.
It is also a buddy movie with the main hero (Daniel Auteuil) striking up a friendship across the class barrier with the Duc de Nevers who reveals the secret Nevers sword thrust, a leitmotif which starts and ends the film and helps the (19-year?) time span hang together.
Never's scheming cousin murders him in order to inherit his fortune and the film quickly turns into a revenge movie. Auteuil saves Nevers' baby girl and heir and plots to topple the villain and to restore her to her rightful place.
Towards the end the film becomes heavily romantic and reviewers have questioned the plausibility of the resulting relationship. It is perhaps the weakest part of the plot.
The catchy score helps the film to bowl along in a relatively light-hearted way. Despite a lot of villainy and murder, the film's main tenor is one of unremitting fun. Were it being acted out on stage it would almost be a farce. Simply wonderful!
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