7.7/10
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The Story of a Cheat (1936)

Le roman d'un tricheur (original title)
A charming scoundrel reflects on his exploits, from childhood through to manhood.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Le tricheur / The Cheat (mature)
Marguerite Moreno ... L'aventurière / The Countess
... Henriette
... Serge Abramovich
... La voleuse / The Jewel Thief
Elmire Vautier ... L'aventuriere, jeune fille / The Countess (younger)
... Le tricheur, petit garçon / The Cheat, as a boy
... Mme Morlot - la tante
... La chanteuse / Redhead (singer)
Pierre Labry ... M. Morlot
Pierre Assy ... Le trichur, jeune homme / The Cheat (young man)
Henri Peiffert ... M. Charbonnier (as Henri Pfeifer)
Gaston Dupray ... Le garçon de café / Waiter
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Adolphe Borchard ... Himself (in prologue)
Myriam Borsoutsky ... Herself (in prologue)
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Storyline

Life story of a charming scoundrel, with little dialogue other than the star/director's witty narration. As a boy, only he survives a family tragedy when he's deprived of supper (poisonous mushrooms!) for stealing...concluding that dishonesty pays. Through years of dabbling in crime and amusing adventures, two women appear and reappear in his life, a dazzling blonde jewel thief and a stunning brunette gambler. Finally, he meets the mysterious Charbonnier who had saved his life in World War I, leading to the surprising next phase in his career... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Racy Confessions of a Gay Boulevardier

Genres:

Comedy

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Details

Official Sites:

Gaumont [France]

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

26 September 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Story of a Cheat  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The first movie to use a voice-over narration. See more »

Crazy Credits

Most of the credits are not printed but spoken in the director's opening narration. See more »

Soundtracks

Et v'là pourquoi
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Sacha Guitry
Music by Adolphe Borchard
Performed by Fréhel
See more »

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User Reviews

Casino Loyale
28 December 2006 | by See all my reviews

I can only approve of my old pal Writer's Reign 's opinion ,who for a change wrote the very first comment."Le Roman d'un Tricheur" is an unique work ,which tends to make a reductio ab absurdum : what 's the point of being honest if honest people are chastised.

So much for the prelims: a young boy was born a very big family :12 persons in all;as he had stolen some money,he was punished and deprived of mushrooms! But they were poisonous mushrooms and the whole family but the naughty brat went to their grave .So what's the point of being honest? The whole story is told by a voice over;the form was totally new since the actors did not act ,they just mimed ,like some kind of tableaux vivants.The only scenes (two) where you find a real dialog are the ones between the hero (Guitry ,of course) and Marguerite Moreno's countess.

This is a short film (barely 80 min) but Guitry 's story is dense and includes an attempt against the life of Russian tsar Nicolas the Second , a lesson of geography about Monaco , a trip to the casinos (royale or not)where the hero tries his luck with mixed results , WW1,a sneak thief -whose methods would make Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie admire the lady-,and more ...

Guitry was often criticized in France ;they said he had an unbearable ego .Completely true:that's what made his movies so exciting.


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