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The Troops in New York (1965)

Le gendarme à New York (original title)
After being chosen to represent France in an international congress, Cruchot and his troops must go to New York, and adapt to its social and cultural aspects.

Director:

Jean Girault

Writers:

Jacques Vilfrid (scenario), Jean Girault (scenario) | 4 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Louis de Funès ... Maréchal des logis-chef Ludovic Cruchot
Michel Galabru ... Adjudant Jérôme Gerber
Christian Marin ... Maréchal des Logis Albert Merlot
Guy Grosso ... Maréchal des Logis Tricard (as Grosso)
Michel Modo ... Maréchal des Logis Berlicot (as Modo)
Alan Scott Alan Scott ... Franck
Jean Lefebvre ... Maréchal des Logis Lucien Fougasse
Geneviève Grad ... Nicole Cruchot
Marino Masé ... Aldo (as Marino Mase)
Mario Pisu Mario Pisu ... L'adjudant Renzo
Albert Augier Albert Augier ... Le présentateur de la publicité
Jean-Pierre Bertrand Jean-Pierre Bertrand ... Le copain de Nicole
Jean Droze Jean Droze ... Un gendarme italien
Leroy Haynes Leroy Haynes ... Le chauffeur de taxi
Billy Kearns Billy Kearns ... Le lieutenant de police (as Bill Kearns)
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Storyline

After being chosen to represent France in an international congress, Cruchot and his troops must go to New York, and adapt to its social and cultural aspects.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French | English

Release Date:

29 October 1965 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Troops in New York See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Followed by The Troops & Aliens (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Les garçons sont gentils
Performed by Geneviève Grad
See more »

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User Reviews

 
As far as gags go, the movie is NOT rich...
19 September 2017 | by ElMaruecan82See all my reviews

"The Troops in New York" is the second opus of the "Gendarme" series that started a year prior in St Tropez and that had catapulted Louis de Funès to the top of the box- office, a place he'd never be dethroned from till his death in 1983. Indeed, even his "lesser" movies would garner at least two-million viewers. He's still in terms of theater's grosses the most successful French actor of all time and 1965 was another defining year of his profitability, proving that 1964 was no lucky strike.

He starred in three of the most successful movies, including two sequels: "The Sucker" with Bourvil, the sequel of the first "Fantomas" and then he wore the gendarme uniform playing his from-now-on forever iconic Maréchal des Logis Ludovic Cruchot in "The Troops in New York". Of course in terms of viewers and grosses, these films were successful, but success is all relative a notion and De Funès' success, while consistent on the commercial level, had its share of ups and downs as far as the critical reception went. "The Sucker" was a commercial and critical success, and there's a reason why it attracted twice more viewers than "The Troops in New York".

Louis de Funès is one of the best comedic actors of all time and the best of his generation, there is just one point where you can't take too much of his antics. "The Sucker" was based on the pairing between De Funès and Bourvil, the sneaky bourgeois sympathetic villain with an Aesopian arc and the lovable loser who proves to be not such an idiot after all. The balance was there, and it was fun to switch back and forth between these two schools of laughs, culminating with the iconic laugh-along ending. That was the stuff for cinematic memories. "The Sucker" wasn't consistently funny but at least, it could afford a plot, "The Troops in New York" took for granted the popularity of the previous film and built on it, let's say it wasn't on the level of the Empire State Building, not even the highest dune in St Tropez.

Sure, there are many moments to enjoy, a nice rib steak recipe à la Galabru, a few well-done over-the-top reactions by De Funès and a hilarious "do you speak English?" delivered to an American woman and naturally, the iconic "My Taylor is rich" that became a French pop-culture trope of basic English learning. The whole exchange about "who's got the most beautiful flowers" is another hilarious moment to count on. That scene is perhaps the highest spot of the movie but it occurs in the first ten minutes, not that laughs never ensue during the film but talk about a missed opportunity when you have six funny Frenchmen in the most American of all the cities and all you can come up is some "plot" about a missing daughter and a climax in a construction site outside New York.

You can't help but feel a bit cheated by the premise, the film is like a can of soda you kept on shaking and shaking but no one ever opens it and by the time someone does, you just have a little "pschiiit". Another remarkable example is when looking for his daughter, Cruchot meets the crazy driving nun in the middle of New York, she's just here to participate to some nun congress, (which is an amusing gag given the reason of the troops' presence in America) but she doesn't offer him a ride. Really? My guess is that they probably intended to make a car chase in New York but the big Apple isn't St Tropez (budget-wise) but still, what a wasted opportunity, very illustrative though as even the Troop has no more reason to be in New York than the nun since the main narrative was about Cruchot trying to find his daughter.

Genevieve Grad, as Nicole, always illuminates the screen, she's beautiful, pretty, witty and seems to be the only match to her patriarchal father, but she's not funny, and when you have four fine comedic actors like Christian Marin, Jean Lefebre, Guy Grosso and Michel Modo (who'd become the voice of Mr. Burns, and Seymour Skinner), you just don't lock them in a lousy hotel or hospital room to inflict us a scene where Nicole is courted by an Italian Carabiniere or some cat-and-mouse father-and-daughter game in a film that could have been a roller-coaster of laughs. This is why Oury's movies worked better De Funès, he never carried the movie alone, always another comedian to share the screen, Girault got six of them and could only use Galabru.

With Galabru playing the straight man, or let's say, chewing less of the scenery, the "Troops" series was promised to last and it did but its appeal is almost dependent on sentimental values while Oury's movies have aged better. They worked because Oury was a true admirer of De Funès and knew all the comedic talent of the world couldn't work without one element of straightness. Many Girault's movies would work better because they would star Claude Gensac as De Funès' wife or would feature a screen-partner. Of course the "Troops" series was a great blessing for De Funes, it allowed him to create his archetypal character of the authoritarian figure, odious with the underlings while kissing the butts of his superiors but even this shtick grows rapidly tiresome.

New York underwent a severe drought in the middle of the 60's and so does this film, the tailor might be rich, the flowers beautiful, but this is a beautiful film far from being rich in gags and laughs. I suspect if it wasn't for "The Sucker", maybe spectators might have grown tired of De Funès, he couldn't just be typecast as Cruchot.


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