Dreadful melodrama ,saved by delightful Marguerite Moreno .She's absolutely mind-boggling in her part of "the Spider" ,an energetic old lady ,a former gypsy,at the head of a gang of smugglers who work the French /Spanish border.Moreno drinks coffee but only when it's made with rainwater (sic)and she rules her men with a rod of iron.
Enter an unwed soon-to-be mother (Ginette Leclerc ) who is welcomed by the old lady:she will "work" with the others and a woman can be useful to move the customs men .But this woman is pregnant by an old beau from a desirable mansion in the neighborhood.The abandoned woman gives birth to a baby girl ..who seems to grow overnight!presto !she's about 8 and in the meanwhile ,the unworthy father got married but his union is sterile.They covet the little girl ...who wonders why she has got now two mothers and who,little by little,discovers the truth.Ginette Leclerc is a gypsy too,and her boss thinks that revenge is a dish best eaten cold.
If it were not for Moreno,the movie would be worthless;the best scene is the death of "Petit Pion" ,a former schoolteacher(?) who does not want to die in the old lady's house ,not to make trouble for her.He utters the only "intellectual" line in the whole movie: "I'm going to cross another border -between life and death-;who knows what I'll find on the other side?"
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