André Roussin was one of the most famous playwrights of what the French call "theatre De Boulevard".
The subject might have seemed risqué for 1957 :a selfish father discovers -how blind he must have been!- that his eldest son is gay and lives with another man ,and that his younger brother is supported by an older woman,and a Japanese countess named Yoko,at that!The actors are good :Pierre Fresnay had performed the play on stage ,but it's a far cry from his movies with Clouzot,Pagnol and Renoir;Simone Renant as the tolerant wife who understands her children and puts the blame on his hubby;Georges Poujouly ,the hero of the celebrated "Jeux Interdits" ,as a very young gigolo.And,as far directing is concerned,a good scene : a discussion between the father (a shadow on the wall) and his gay son (represented by ..the shadow of a chair on the wall...
There's the rub: although the homosexual boy is depicted in lavish detail (a caricatured portrait,complete with jewels ,taste for dresses ,effeminate manners ...) ,the character NEVER appears ,as though the authors were ashamed to show him. (you are going to tell me that Tennessee Williams (and Mankiewicz) did not show cousin Sebastien's face in "suddenly last Summer"(1959) either).Thus ,if this movie is meant to be a plea for the right to be different,it is cowardly.This flick,which is essentially a comedy ,leaves a bitter taste in the mouth seen today.
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