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Beaucaire is a barber for the royal French court which becomes a real "royal pain" for the king. As a result he is sent to the guillotine - however he is saved by the Duc de Chandre, who rescues and transports him to the Spanish court. While there Beaucaire poses as a nobleman. The only problem is, he gets into even more trouble.Written by
One of over 700 Paramount Productions, filmed between 1929 and 1949, which were sold to MCA/Universal in 1958 for television distribution, and have been owned and controlled by Universal ever since. Its initial television broadcast took place in Minneapolis Sunday 8 February 1959 on WTCN (Channel 11), and as it slowly spread across the USA, it was not long before it became a popular local favorite. In Milwaukee it first aired Sunday 12 April 1959 on WITI (Channel 6), in St. Louis 23 May 1959 on KMOX (Channel 4), in Seattle 2 June 1959 on KIRO (Channel 7), in Chicago 10 October 1959 on WBBM (Channel 2), in Phoenix 28 November on KVAR (Channel 12), in Philadelphia 5 December 1959 on WCAU (Channel 10), in San Francisco 27 December 1959 on KPIX (Channel 5), in Pittsburgh 14 January 1960 on KDKA (Channel 2), in Des Moines 27 January 1960 on WHO (Channel 13), in Wichita 29 January 1960 on KTVH (Channel 12), and in Toledo 15 February 1960 on WTOL (Channel 11). It was released on DVD 8 October 2002 in tandem with Where There's Life (1947) as part of Universal's Bob Hope: The Tribute Collection, and again as a single 30 October 2015 as part of the Universal Vault Series. See more »
Despite falling in pond just a short time earlier, Beaucaire's costume is inexplicably dry. See more »
King Louis XV:
[to le Chandre, referring to his mistress, Madame Pompadour]
Should I chance to find her, I'm afraid I shall have your head...
King Louis XV:
... and yours too!
Naturally! Two heads are better than one!
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Bob Hope movies of the 1930s and 40s are all very pleasant entertainment, though for comedies the laughs are usually not as obvious or often as you might find in many comedies of the era. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, as the films are a bit more plot-driven than many comedies and in general these films have held up much better than his later films (particularly those from the 1960s). However, I noticed one reviewer gave this one a 10 and suggested Hope should have received Oscar consideration for this film....yeah, right. They're not THAT good!
The film finds Bob playing a barber in the latter portion of Louis XV's reign (about 1770 more or less). Naturally Bob is a bit of a screw up and gets in trouble. But, there is a way out--he has to agree to pose as the Duke--a man who is to marry the Spanish princess and solidify an alliance between the countries. But, no one realizes that a crazy Spanish general (Joseph Schildkraut) has plans to kill the Duke, as he WANTS the countries at war with each other! So, it's up to the cowardly Hope to try to save his butt and, hopefully, find love. As for the Duke (Patric Knowles), he's fallen in love with a woman and doesn't really want to marry a princess he's never met. Can it all work out in the end and everyone live happily ever after?
The movie is relatively low on laughs--particularly the climactic sword-fighting scene (it's rather lame). But, Hope is an agreeable personality in the film and that makes up for the problems...which would include the3 fact that NONE of the French or Spanish people looked or talked like they came from these countries. Heck, Schildkraut was Austrian and sounded NOTHING like a Spaniard! And Hope seemed about as French as Nelson Mandella! Still, a nice and agreeable little film.
By the way, the original "Monsieur Beaucaire" was a silent film starring Rudolph Valentino and was not a comedy. Also, although this is only of interest to history teachers, the film talked about the guillotine several times, though it was not used for the first time until about 1791--during the French Revolution.
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