Shavian social satire. Odette is an actress who's now the mistress of a government minister. Her household of cook, maid, and chauffeur needs a valet. On the eve of going with the minister ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
...
Jacques Baumer ...
Felix Montignac
...
Alys Delonce ...
Henriette Corniche, femme d'Adrien
...
Madeleine Crapicheau, la femme de chambre
...
Geneviève Vix ...
La comtesse
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Storyline

Shavian social satire. Odette is an actress who's now the mistress of a government minister. Her household of cook, maid, and chauffeur needs a valet. On the eve of going with the minister to Deauville, she engages Désiré, a robust and talkative man, even through his most recent employer, a countess, intimates improprieties. Things go well for a short time: the wealthy talk about the servants, the servants talk about their employers. Then, Désiré has explicit dreams about Odette; his outbursts wake the maid in the next room nightly. Odette has the same dream each night, awaking the minister and his jealousy. Is there any decorous way to handle these subconscious attractions? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Comedy

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Release Date:

3 December 1937 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Fruens Tjener  »

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(Western Electric)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Connections

Remade as Désiré (1996) See more »

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User Reviews

The servant
29 January 2007 | by See all my reviews

Like many (all?) Guitry's movies ,"Désiré " begins with a spoken "cast and credits" .It was before Welles' "Magnificent Ambersons" wasn't it? Paying a tribute ,not only to his actors but also to all those obscure people who contributed to the movie was pretty smart and generous on Guitry's part,a director whose films were slagged off by critic Georges Sadoul as "mirrors of his ego" " canned plays" .

Time has done Guitry justice.Two of his movies ,this one and "Quadrille" were recently remade.That said ,in spite of brilliant sequences,I think that "Désiré " is too talky -with his scenes with then-wife Delubac ,his delivery is so rapid ,it's sometimes impossible to catch all he is saying.

Désiré is a butler who seduces the posh ladies who hire him.As soon he is in the house,Odette begins to dream she's a love affair with him.The problem is that she speaks and even shouts when she's dreaming and her lover (a politician) is not prepared to accept it.A "Freudian" book about dreams -the kind of work you easily find in a dime store- puzzles the lady.

The second half of the play is not as funny as the first one.The arrival of a stupid hard of hearing old "friend" gets in the way.One should note that the first part did include some memorable scenes by Arletty and Pauline Carton as the chamber maid and the cook .

A good (but not great) Guitry.


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