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Bel ordure (1973)

Pierre used to be a top level football player but he quit. Now he is both a prestidigitator and a stool pigeon, benefiting from the protection of the chief inspector. In his dreams he is ... See full summary »




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Marie, la chanteuse
Pierre, l'illusionniste
L'inspecteur de police
Poussin, le pianiste
José Artur ...
Le commissaire
Marcel Guiet ...
Joseph, le présentateur
Sady Rebbot ...
Le producteur de disques
Le gardien de prison
Michèle Amiel ...
La concierge
Betty Berr ...
La prostituée sur le bidet (as Betty Beer)
Maurice Brancourt ...
Le clochard
Bernard Brégier ...
Le serveur
Guy Chapelier ...
Un voyou (as Guy Chapellier)
La prostituée aux jouets
Pierre-Henri Deleau ...
Un imprésario


Pierre used to be a top level football player but he quit. Now he is both a prestidigitator and a stool pigeon, benefiting from the protection of the chief inspector. In his dreams he is haunted by the horrors he saw (he took part in ?) during the Algerian War. Pierre lives with Marie, a young singer who performs at the same cabaret as him. Lately Marie has decided to start a career in the showbiz and Pierre is worried. Nothing alarming happens though, until a diabolical inspector, jealous of his superior, decides to manipulate Pierre. He also puts pressure on Poussin, Marie's pianist, and on Joseph, the night club's master of ceremony. What he wants is to compromise his superior and take his place. Will Pierre escape this ruthless trap? Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Release Date:

4 October 1973 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Lovely Swine  »

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Did You Know?


First feature film by Jean Marboeuf. See more »


Si petite
Written by Gaston Claret and Pierre Bayle
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User Reviews

Confused and confusing
27 November 2009 | by See all my reviews

"Bel ordure", the first feature directed by Jean Marboeuf in 1973, is an ambitious film. Which is not good news, for an ambitious film that fails is much worse than light fare fizzling out. Grasp all, lose all, that is in fact what happens here to Marboeuf who aims to tell at the same time a realistic noir story, to mix stark realism and the tricks of cabaret acts, to make an anarchist commentary on French society, to handle the problem of French exactions during the Algerian war, to examine the hardships of living as a couple, to denounce the corruption in the police forces and the excesses of show business … This is too much for a fledgling director who has designed his film as a jigsaw puzzle. Why not, but the trouble is that a standard viewer like me remained … puzzled! As a matter fact, while watching the film I could never figure out what was going on … until I read a summary on a website that finally enlightened me! That takes the cake, doesn't it?

Terribly confused and confusing, "Bel ordure" is anything but captivating. How can you relate to the characters when you do not understand what is happening? To make matters worse, the action proceeds at a listless pace. Yawns guaranteed.

The superior cast (Claude Brasseur, Jean Rochefort, José Artur, Fernand Ledoux) is wasted, which is too bad. The exception which proves the rule is Bulle Ogier as the young cabaret singer. She has a lot of unaffected charm. In addition, the original songs she performs are offbeat and incisive (to be fair, the chilling lyrics are signed Marboeuf). For sure, Ogier and her anarchist songs will be the only things I will remember of this otherwise boring mess.

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