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The Mad Adventures of Rabbi Jacob (1973)

Les aventures de Rabbi Jacob (original title)
Trailer
2:58 | Trailer
A bigoted Frenchman finds himself forced to impersonate a popular rabbi while on the run from a group of assassins - and the police.

Director:

Gérard Oury

Writers:

Gérard Oury (screenplay), Danièle Thompson (screenplay) | 8 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Louis de Funès ... Victor Pivert
Suzy Delair ... Germaine Pivert
Marcel Dalio ... Rabbi Jacob (as Dalio)
Claude Giraud ... Mohamed Larbi Slimane / Rabbi Zeiligman
Renzo Montagnani ... Le colonel Farès
Janet Brandt ... Tzipé Schmoll, la grand-mère
André Falcon André Falcon ... Le ministre
Xavier Gélin Xavier Gélin ... Alexandre, le fils du général
Henri Guybet ... Salomon, le chauffeur de Pivert
Popeck Popeck ... Moishe Schmoll (as Jean Herbert)
Miou-Miou ... Antoinette Pivert
Denise Provence Denise Provence ... Esther Schmoll
Jacques François ... Le général
Claude Piéplu ... Le commissaire divisionnaire Andreani
Georges Adet Georges Adet ... Le vieux Lévi
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Storyline

In this riot of frantic disguises and mistaken identities, Victor Pivert, a blustering, bigoted French factory owner, finds himself taken hostage by Slimane, an Arab rebel leader. The two dress up as rabbis as they try to elude not only assasins from Slimane's country, but also the police, who think Pivert is a murderer. Pivert ends up posing as Rabbi Jacob, a beloved figure who's returned to France for his first visit after 30 years in the United States. Adding to the confusion are Pivert's dentist-wife, who thinks her husband is leaving her for another woman, their daughter, who's about to get married, and a Parisian neighborhood filled with people eager to celebrate the return of Rabbi Jacob. Written by Eugene Kim <genekim@concentric.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

THE WILD... THE HILARIOUS... THE SCREWBALL... THE RIOTOUS See more »

Genres:

Adventure | Comedy

Certificate:

G | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the U.S. (English dubbed version), audiences reportedly burst into laughter, often followed by applause, for the dancing sequence. See more »

Goofs

When Pivert is about to climb out of the bubble-gum vat for the first time, the ladder is already smeared with green goop. See more »

Quotes

[as his Cab fills up with Jewish men accompanying Rabbi Jacob]
New York Taxi Driver: Hey, this is a taxi, not a synagogue!
See more »

Alternate Versions

To obtain a 'U' rating, cuts were made to the UK cinema release to punches during the fight scene between Sliman and one of his captors early in the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Vive les comédies musicales! (2009) See more »

User Reviews

 
One of the funniest films...ever!
28 August 2002 | by davidsroseSee all my reviews

This is one of the funniest, bust-a-gut laughing, most hysterical films ever made. It came out in France in 1973, and did so well that it was put into release (with subtitles) in the US, where it more than held its own. This is slapstick farce at its very best, triumphantly showcasing Luis De Funes, who was as big a comedy star in France as was Jerry Lewis. It is unfortunate that this is one of the only films of his that made it to America. The premise is the typical switched identities / coincidental mixups / innocent man being chased plots of the genre, but what makes this one sublime is the unbelievably rubber face and spot-on timing of De Funes, backed up by a good supporting cast, decent script and excellent direction. I first saw this in my teens when it originally came out, and my entire family all agreed that it was the funniest film we'd ever seen. I recently saw it again with my own children, and it has absolutely held up over thirty years. If you like comedy (particularly of the fish-out-of-water and/or slapstick variety) do your best to track this one down. It's worth it!

PS: As a little treat, look closely at the actor who plays Rabbi Jacob. Look familiar? It was Marcel Dalio, who played the croupier in Casablanca!


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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French | English | Hebrew | Yiddish | Arabic

Release Date:

18 October 1973 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Mad Adventures of 'Rabbi' Jacob See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

FRF18,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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