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Dandelions by the Roots (1964)

Des pissenlits par la racine (original title)
Jockey Jack has a bill open with a gangster just released from jail. He somehow manages to parry the gangster's knife attack backstage at a theatre and the latter ends up dead being put ... See full summary »


Georges Lautner


Clarence Weff (based upon the novel by), Clarence Weff (adaptation) | 4 more credits »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Louis de Funès ... Jockey Jack
Michel Serrault ... Jérôme Martinet
Mireille Darc ... Rockie La Braise
Maurice Biraud ... Jo Arengeot
Francis Blanche ... Absalon
Raymond Meunier Raymond Meunier ... La Douane
Hubert Deschamps ... Général Fréderic Cédille
Gianni Musy Gianni Musy ... Riton, dit 'Pommes-Chips'
Barbara Brand Barbara Brand ... La comédienne qui joue Sonia
Paola Barbara
Hélène Laffly Hélène Laffly ... Une invitée de Christine
Simone Landry Simone Landry ... Une invitée de Christine
Raymone Raymone ... Palmyre, la folle
Colette Régis Colette Régis ... Christine
Malka Ribowska ... La comtesse


Jockey Jack has a bill open with a gangster just released from jail. He somehow manages to parry the gangster's knife attack backstage at a theatre and the latter ends up dead being put into a double bass case. A day later the gangster mysteriously has disappeared, but it turns out that he was carrying a bet ticket for a horse race now worth over a million. A turbulent run for the money begins. Written by Oliver Heidelbach

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When the gangster throws the knife after Jockey Jack, it ends up sticking in the framework at an impossible angle. See more »

User Reviews

acting and writing/directing at the top of the range
28 December 2009 | by xavier-2See all my reviews

With De Funes at the threshold of stardom (1964 would also see him in the first of the Gendarme and Fantomas series as well as in Faites Sauter la Banque!), Darc already in it, and a mix of reliable veterans (Blanche) and future stars (Serrault), the actor lineup is outstanding. But what makes the movie even more outstanding is the dialog. Lautner and Audiard were at their very peak, also penning and directing Les Barbouzes and Les Tontons Flingueurs in that period - perhaps the finest dialog in post-WW II French cinema, on par (in the original) with the likes of Sweet Smell of Success or Some Like it Hot. The storyline (no spoiler meant here) mixes elements of gangster, con (wo)man and chase movies. The crossovers and recurrences (where is that body?) are hilarious. Like all movies of this kind, the ending poses a quandary for the writers, and this is done more than honorably in this case. The technical quality is not contemporary of course, and I presume the dialog will lose some of its flavor in most translations, but the storyline and the acting will make this a worthwhile watch in any language for those who appreciate 60's cinema.

To follow up on cheese_cake's review: the title refers to the dead and buried ("eating dandelions by their roots"). It is a paraphrase of the title of the novel from which the movie's writers started. Of course, the title is also playful: the body of interest in the movie, dead though it may be, isn't that static; some of those chasing it, however, fear that they will end up pushing up daisies indeed.

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France | Italy



Release Date:

6 May 1964 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Dandelions by the Roots See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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