Robert Vernay is remembered for his two versions of "Le Comte De Monte-Cristo,in the forties in the occupation days,then in the fifties a remake in color .
Ces Sacrées Vacances (1956) is perfect Saturday-night-at -the- movie-for-the whole-family stuff:from that standpoint,it can be considered a satisfying movie.Art house cinema ,it is not.Full of implausibilities,but eventful ,never a dull moment with the Pinson (=chaffinch ) family.Colorful characters played by seasoned actors.
Pierre Détaille and Sophie Desmarets (and children) embody the fifties vacationists ,at a time you often have to rent a lousy car ;there was no speed limit then :most of the cars were "Deux Chevaux ","Quatre Chevaux,and anyway,we are told that the road safety administration lent their support to the director:who could ask for more?
Funny scenes :
-the breakdown and the garage where the transporter (Jean Tissier) who wish he had been a mechanic tries his best to repair the car.
-the picnic,during which the wife sets the pinewood on fire: the daughter proudly bragging: "we did start the fire!" ;the gendarme (Henri Génès ) making his report and carefully choosing the right words .
-the couple of crooks ,the would be friends ,who are actually hotel thieves;"let's play hide and seek" says the robber to the child when he sneaks into the bedroom by the window.
The American millionaire"s intervention (Jess Hahn) makes the end of the plot very obvious though.
WW2 was not far behind and mom hints at a bridge daddy prevented the Germans from crossing (it's not exactly true,in fact)
Besides,dad and mom want to set an example to their brats: so they are accidental arsonists ,their duty is to shoulder the entire responsibility for it.
People would not say they were looking on Vernay's side to open up new horizons in the cinematographic field of the FRench late fifties;but you would not deny yourself a good time ,would you?
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