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Safe Conduct (2002)
"Laissez-passer" (original title)

7.0
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 1,025 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 15 user | 34 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

In occupied France, German-run Continental Films calls the shots in the movie business. Assistant director and Resistance activist Jean Devaivre works for Continental, where he can get "in ... See full summary »

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Title: Safe Conduct (2002)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Jean-Devaivre
Denis Podalydès ...
Jean Aurenche
Charlotte Kady ...
Suzanne Raymond
Marie Desgranges ...
Simone Devaivre
Ged Marlon ...
Jean-Paul Le Chanois
Philippe Morier-Genoud ...
Maurice Tourneur
Laurent Schilling ...
Charles Spaak
Maria Pitarresi ...
Reine Sorignal
...
Dr. Greven
...
Richard Pottier
...
Olga
...
Roger Richebé
...
Pierre Nord
Liliane Rovère ...
Mémaine
Götz Burger ...
Bauermeister
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Storyline

In occupied France, German-run Continental Films calls the shots in the movie business. Assistant director and Resistance activist Jean Devaivre works for Continental, where he can get "in between the wolf's teeth and avoid being chewed up". Fast-living screenwriter Jean Aurenche uses every possible argument to avoid working for the enemy. For both, wartime is a battle for survival. Written by Aline

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Collaborate. Resist. Survive.


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Details

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Release Date:

9 January 2002 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Safe Conduct  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$6,811 (USA) (11 October 2002)

Gross:

$26,617 (USA) (15 November 2002)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film's dedication states that it is "Dedicated to those who lived through these events" [as depicted in this movie]. See more »

Connections

References Shop Girls of Paris (1943) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Master's Masterpiece
14 October 2002 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

Bertrand Tavernier is, arguably, the greatest living director of French films, and "Laissez-Passer" ("Safe Conduct") is his masterpiece. By recreating the working and personal lives of two actual French artists, screenwriter Jean Auranche and director Jean Devaivre, Tavernier provides a rich tapestry -- at once funny, tender, exciting, and moving -- of the French film industry during the darkest days of World War II. Although the studio for which Auranche and Devaivre worked was under Nazi patronage and control, almost every writer, director, and technician who made French comedies, dramas,and musicals tried to subvert Nazism by subtly incorporating themes of revolt and resistance into the films they made. Tavernier asserts this truth while he explores his heroes' real-life participation in the French underground: stealing German documents and passing these on to the Allies and finding jobs for creative, but indigent, friends. Moreover, the affection with which Auranche and Devaivre regarded the cinema talent of their days -- Pierre Fresnay, Raimu, Danielle Darrieux, Harry Baur, even the lightly satirized Fernandel -- is part of Tavernier's epic vision of the French film scene of its time. And he gives us invaluable insights into how brave people continued to work at their craft despite the poverty, hunger, and oppression they suffered daily. It's a pity that some of Tavernier's younger critics cannot appreciate either his concepts or his visually fluid and arresting style (for sheer cinematic beauty, he captures the squalor of everyday French life during the Resistance by alternating it with glowing sequences of the country's rural life). "Laissez-Passer" is faultlessly acted; seldom has such a large cast of players -- of all ages -- been in such beautiful synch with a director.


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