The story of Marie-Martine ,told backwards.



(adaptation), (dialogue) | 1 more credit »


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Credited cast:
Renée Saint-Cyr ...
Loïc Limousin
L'oncle Parpain
Marguerite Deval ...
Mademoiselle Aimée
Jeanne Fusier-Gir ...
Mademoiselle Crémier
La mère de Maurice
Héléna Manson ...
Madame Limousin
Monsieur de Lachaume
Michel Marsay ...
Philippe Ponthieu
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tania Balachova ...
La dame à la gare
Jacques Beauvais
Lucien Blondeau
Albert Brouett
Hélène Constant ...


Novelist Loic Limousin, passing through a little provincial town,meets again Marie-Martine, his book's heroine.She tells him how she met a good boy ,Maurice ,after the drama which led her to jail.Maurice is currently in Paris ,in his uncle Parnisse's house .While reading Limousin's book , he wonders whether the heroine of the story might be the woman he fell in love with.He goes to the novelist's place ,but his wife tells him ,in accordance with her husband's instructions, that it's pure fiction . Written by dbdumonteil

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Release Date:

11 May 1943 (France)  »

Also Known As:

D'où vient Marie-Martine?  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Backward! the granddaddy of "Memento" !
18 October 2006 | by See all my reviews

Albert Valentin was the most promising (along with Clouzot) of the French directors during German Occupation.Like Clouzot's "le Corbeau" ,his film "la Vie de PLaisir" had problems after the Liberation.Whereas Clouzot could survive (and give us more masterpieces,two of which are currently in the IMDb top 250),Valentin almost gave up,and after two or three inconsequential works,contented himself with writing screenplays.

"Marie-Martine" was revolutionary :its form was completely new in 1943.Think of it!Three flashbacks ,which flout chronology ;the first one depicts recent events ,then the others are going backward in time .The construction of the movie is dazzling ,using different point of views ,and a lot of colorful supporting characters .Some kind of "puzzle of a downfall child" .But one should note ,that ,had the movie been chronologically edited ,it would have lost 75% of its appeal.French critic Jacques Lourcelles is not completely wrong when he writes that the structure was there to hide the triteness of the plot....But there are strong scenes (Marie-Martine and the mother superior) ,strong characters (Saturnin Fabre turns one of his best performances and his famous sentence "Tiens Ta Bougie....Droite!"=hold your candle...straight!" -repeated five times- has become one of the most celebrated lines of the French cinema ;some find sauciness in it),strong lines ("I wanted my goddaughter to be carefully taught so I put her in an orphanage") "Marie-Martine" although it had not the emotional power of "L'Entraineuse" was genuine experimental cinema and paved a reliable way for the next movie "la Vie de Plaisir" ,which was probably Valentin's peak.It is essential viewing for people interested in the evolution of the FRench cinema.

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