6.4/10
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29 user 15 critic

Désirée (1954)

The rise and fall of Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France.

Director:

Henry Koster
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Marlon Brando ... Napoleon Bonaparte
Jean Simmons ... Désirée Clary
Merle Oberon ... Empress Josephine
Michael Rennie ... Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte
Cameron Mitchell ... Joseph Bonaparte
Elizabeth Sellars ... Julie - Désirée's Sister
Charlotte Austin ... Paulette Bonaparte
Cathleen Nesbitt ... Mme. Bonaparte
Evelyn Varden ... Marie
Isobel Elsom ... Mme. Clary - Désirée's Mother
John Hoyt ... Talleyrand
Alan Napier ... Despreaux
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mary Stewart ... Minor Role
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Storyline

In Marseilles, France in 1794, Desiree Clary, a young millinery clerk, becomes infatuated with Napoleon Bonaparte, but winds up wedding Genaral Jean-Baptiste Berandotte, an aid to Napoleon who later joins the forces that bring about the Emperor's downfall. Josephine Beauharnais, a worldly courtesan marries Napoleon and becomes Empress of France, but is then cast aside by her spouse when she proves unable to produce an heir to the throne. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The life...the women...the conquests of Napoleon!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Swedish

Release Date:

11 February 1955 (Belgium) See more »

Also Known As:

Desirée See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Twentieth Century Fox See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

4-Track Stereo (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Average Shot Length (ASL) = 15 seconds. See more »

Quotes

Count Brahe: You will enjoy life in Sweden, madame. Stockholm is called the Venice of the north.
Desiree Clary: [Shivering] I prefer the Venice of the south!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Munsters: Munster Masquerade (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

Désirée Waltz
Composed By Alfred Newman
Orchestrated By Alexander Courage
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Sumptuously mounted, but certainly not a history lesson!
24 July 2003 | by gregcoutureSee all my reviews

Filmed when CinemaScope's original ratio was still in use by Twentieth's cinematographers and with production values ladled on with an apparently generous budget (though no authentic European locations), "Desiree" is somewhat of a disappointment in many respects. Surprisingly Merle Oberon, as Josephine, remains in my memory as giving a touching (and, of course, glamorous) performance, but virtually everyone else (including Jean Simmons, one of my special favorites) fails to impress. Perhaps the emphasis on recounting the exploits of Napoleon Bonaparte from the perspective of one of his early, and unrequited, romantic conquests is the reason the whole enterprise seems like an undistinguished piece of overstuffed furniture...comfortable but hardly worthy of praise as an artisan's finest achievement. As an entertainment, typical of the Fifties, it was worth the price of admission when first released but I rather doubt that I'll join a chorus requesting Fox Home Entertainment to give this a DVD release in a widescreen format.


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