7.2/10
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8 user 6 critic

The Pearls of the Crown (1937)

Les perles de la couronne (original title)
Three narrators (French writer Jean Martin, an English royal equerry, and a papal chamberlain) tell the story of seven matched pearls, four of them now in the British Crown. Episodes whirl ... See full summary »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Françoise Martin / Marie Stuart / Joséphine de Beauharnais
... Jean Martin / François Ier / Barras / Napoléon III
... L'officier du roi (English narrator) / Le roi Henry VIII
Renée Saint-Cyr ... Madeleine de la Tour d'Auvergne
Enrico Glori ... La camérier du pape (Italian narrator)
... Le pape Clement VII
Barbara Shaw ... Anne de Boleyn
Marguerite Moreno ... Catherine de Medicis (1860) / L'impératrice Eugénie âgée (1914)
... La reine d'Abyssinie
... Le ministre d'Abyssinie (as Dalio)
... Le prisonnier italien en Abyssinie
Robert Seller ... Le prisonnier français en Abyssinie
Ponzio ... Un ouvrier chantant
Andrews Engelmann ... James - le voleur (as Engelman)
Yvette Pienne ... La reine Marie Tudor / La reine Elizabeth I / La reine Victoria âgée
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Storyline

Three narrators (French writer Jean Martin, an English royal equerry, and a papal chamberlain) tell the story of seven matched pearls, four of them now in the British Crown. Episodes whirl us from Pope Clement VII to Mary Queen of Scots, from whom the pearls are stolen while she's occupied with the headsman. Historic events are seasoned with sly, satiric humor, and famous beauties are portrayed by stunning actresses. Then the narrators meet, and decide to try tracing the three unrecovered pearls from 1587 to the present... Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

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Comedy | History

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Release Date:

11 April 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sacha Guitry's The Pearls of the Crown (Les perles de la couronne)  »

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(Western Electric)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was first telecast on New York City's pioneer television station W2XBS Friday 2 August 1939. It is one of over 200 titles in the list of independent feature films made available for television presentation by Advance Television Pictures announced in Motion Picture Herald 4 April 1942. At this time, television broadcasting was in its infancy, almost totally curtailed by the advent of World War II, and would not continue to develop until 1945-1946. See more »

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User Reviews

 
A genuine pearl
11 November 2009 | by See all my reviews

With only two comments on IMDb (and only one external review) I feel duty bound to chime in with a third to say that this is one of the perpetually delightful gems of cinema. A unique film: playful, fascinating, extravagant, hilarious, touching. Guitry is written off time and again as a mere purveyor of filmed theater, and it's true that he made many films -- about half of his output -- from stage plays, often long after their original stage productions. But once he got the cinema bug (he resisted for a very long time, only starting make films in middle age) he found that he was given a wonderful new toy, and continued to play with it for the rest of his days. The enormous cast, the huge number of extravagant sets, the lavish costumes, and the vivacious imagination with which all these are employed make of this charming film something to be treasured. I've seen it now four times -- I try to save it for moments when I really want something wonderful to savor. And let me not forget the beautiful and equally lavish musical score of Jean Francaix. The DVD is quite good, but you will of course have to have a region-free player -- and if you don't, why not? Available at this time only as one of the eight discs in a magnificent box set (with many extras) from Gaumont France, "Sacha Guitry: L'age d'or 1936-1938." It's well worth the price.


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