7.6/10
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Carnival in Flanders (1935)

La kermesse héroïque (original title)
Tells the story of the Spanish invasion of Flanders

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Writers:

(short story), (dialogue)
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5 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Cornelia de Witte, Madame la Bourgmestre / Madame Burgomaster
... Korbus de Witte, le bourgmestre / The Burgomaster (as Alerme)
... Le duc d'Olivarès / The Duke
... Le chapelain / The Priest
Lyne Clevers ... La poissonnière / The Fish-Wife (as Lynne Clevers)
... Siska
Maryse Wendling ... La boulangère / The Baker's Wife
Ginette Gaubert ... L'aubergiste / The Inn-Keeper's Wife
Marguerite Ducouret ... La femme du brasseur / The Brewer's Wife
Bernard Lancret ... Julien Breughel
Alfred Adam ... Josef Van Meulen, le boucher
Pierre Labry ... L'aubergiste / The Inn-Keeper
Arthur Devère ... Le poissonnier / The Fishmonger (as Arthur Devere)
Marcel Carpentier ... Le boulanger / The Baker
... Le capitaine / The Captain (as Alexandre Darcy)
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Storyline

When the village of Boom, in Flanders, learns a Spanish Duke and his troops plan to pass the night, the 4-man army deserts and the Mayor plays dead; so the Mayor's wife organizes the townswomen to greet the invaders and preserve the peace with womanly wiles. Written by Rich Wannen <Wannen@swbell.net>

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First Prize winner of all French films See more »


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Details

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Release Date:

22 September 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Carnival in Flanders  »

Filming Locations:

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the second non-fiction cinema film to be shown on British television (on 7 October 1938). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Un genio en apuros (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

The women's hour
24 July 2008 | by See all my reviews

"La Kermesse Heroique" is looked upon,in France ,as Jacques Feyder's apex as well as the beginning of his decline .

This is a colorful entertaining work,with wonderful settings ,costumes,actors ,folk songs and scenes inspired by the Flemish art (the mayoress' daughter is in love with a painter ,Jean Brueghel.) The director's wife,Françoise Rosay (who was also featured in the two previous works "Le Grand Jeu" and "Pension Mimosas " and would be the star of the next work "Les Gens Du Voyage" ) finds here the role of a lifetime : the mayoress character was probably inspired by the strong wives or servants we find in Molière's plays (Madame Jourdain,Toinette).Rosay has the first part of the movie for herself ,but she shares the acting honors with Louis Jouvet's mischievous part of the chaplain;an opportunity for Spaak to laugh at religion;during the banquet ,the nice innocent young ladies ask the ecclesiastic to tell them a tale of the Holy Office :the clergyman tells them the tale of a virgin whose body was covered with honey and licked by a he-goat,the guests have a wonderful time!And when the holy man ,leaving the town,is given chocolate by an inhabitant:he smiled, he thanks and gives her ,as a bonus, some indulgences!I hope she was not protestant.

In this Flemish town,where people are gathering for the fair ,men are cowards :as soon the coming of the Spaniards is announced,they hide their money ("superior significance women cannot understand" ),or they pretend that they are dead (the mayor).A false flash-forward depicts the cruelty of the invaders.

Not only the occupying forces treat the woman as ladies ,but they show romanticism - the mayoress dreaming of Italy, the chaplain marrying "Romeo" to "Juliet" - and a sense of humor -the duke has obviously guessed that the mayoress is not a widow.

Today,Feyder is eclipsed by Renoir ,Carné -who was here his assistant again ,after "Pension Mimosas" - or Duvivier;he seems to enjoy a good reputation abroad though;"Kermesse" and the two other works I mention above are essential viewing for anyone interested in the French cinema.


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