6.1/10
421
14 user 4 critic

Lady Oscar (1979)

The story of Lady Oscar, a female military commander who served during the time of the French Revolution.

Director:

Jacques Demy

Writers:

Jacques Demy (screenplay and dialogue), Patricia Louisianna Knop (screenplay and dialogue) | 3 more credits »
Reviews

On Disc

at Amazon

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Parking (1985)
Fantasy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.7/10 X  

This film is an update of Jean Cocteau's Orpheus, set in the world of 1980s rock.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Francis Huster, Laurent Malet, Keiko Itô
The Rose of Versailles (1979–1980)
Animation | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The story of Lady Oscar, a female military commander who served during the time of the French Revolution.

Stars: Reiko Tajima, Tarô Shigaki, Hisashi Katsuda
Model Shop (1969)
Certificate: M Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

George Matthews is a young man who is having a bittersweet affair with a French divorcée in Los Angeles. Waiting to be drafted, he is unable to commit himself to anything or anybody, ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Anouk Aimée, Gary Lockwood, Alexandra Hay
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

A male Parisian driving school owner who goes to see his doctor and complains of feeling run down is pronounced four months pregnant. When the diagnosis is confirmed by a specialist, the ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Marcello Mastroianni, Micheline Presle
Drama | Fantasy | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In 1349, while the Black Plague threatens Germany, the town of Hamelin hires a wandering pied-piper to lure rats away with his magic pipe, but then refuses to pay for his services, causing him to lure the town's children away.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Keith Buckley, Patsy Puttnam, Arthur Hewlett
Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A pseudo-documentary on the life of Yves Montand, who plays himself, in this tribute to his long career. During a musical tour, Montand returns to Marseille and revisits the many highlights... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Yves Montand, Mathilda May, Patrick Fierry
Turning Table (1988)
Animation | Biography | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

While working at his editing table cartoon maker Paul Grimault is visited by a little clown, the star of his movie "Le Roi et l'Oiseau". Paul, who is delighted, shows his guest several ... See full summary »

Directors: Paul Grimault, Jacques Demy
Stars: Paul Grimault, Anouk Aimée, Mathieu Demy
Break of Day (TV Movie 1980)
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

In the summer of 1927, the author Colette reflects on her life from her Saint-Tropez home as she deals with aging and the idea that her romantic adventures are over. But then she meets a handsome older man and a rich young woman.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Danièle Delorme, Dominique Sanda, Jean Sorel
Drama | Musical | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A film musical in which every line is sung. The frame is about workers during a strike. They also prepare and perform a demonstration. Two personal relations develop against this background... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Dominique Sanda, Danielle Darrieux, Richard Berry
Comedy | Drama | Musical
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Two sisters leave their small seaside town of Rochefort in search of romance. Hired as carnival singers, one falls for an American musician, while the other must search for her ideal partner.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, George Chakiris, Françoise Dorléac
Bay of Angels (1963)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Jean is a clerk in a bank. His colleague Caron is a gambler and gives him the virus. In the casinos, Jean meets Jackie. Their love affair will follow their luck at the roulette.

Director: Jacques Demy
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Claude Mann, Paul Guers
Louisiana (TV Movie 1984)
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Virginia Tregan returns to her home in the U.S. Deep South from a sojourn in Paris only to discover that her family plantation and its holdings have been lost. She determines to recoup her ... See full summary »

Directors: Philippe de Broca, Jacques Demy, and 1 more credit »
Stars: Margot Kidder, Ian Charleson, Andréa Ferréol
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Catriona MacColl ... Oscar Françoise de Jarjayes
Barry Stokes ... André Grandier
Christine Böhm Christine Böhm ... Marie Antoinette
Jonas Bergström ... Hans Axel von Fersen
Mark Kingston ... Général de Jarjayes
Martin Potter ... Comte de Giraudet, Oscar's Fiancé
Nicholas Amer ... M. De Chantilly, the pistol duelist
Patrick Floersheim Patrick Floersheim ... Oscar's sword adversaire in tavern
Consuelo De Haviland Consuelo De Haviland ... Oscar's pair at the Black Ball
Patsy Kensit ... Oscar as a child
Andrew Bagley Andrew Bagley ... André as a child
Cadine Constan Cadine Constan ... Madame de Vallois / Launderess
Anouska Hempel ... Jeanne Vallois / Jeanne de la Motte
Shelagh McLeod ... Rosalie Vallois
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Patrick Allan Patrick Allan
Edit

Storyline

Oscar François de Jarjayes was born female, but her father who longed for a son and a heir insisted she be raised as a boy, alongside, Andre Grandier, the grandson of her nanny. When Oscar matures into an adult she is selected to be captain of the guards at the Palace of Versailles under King Louis XVI and Marie Antonette. Oscar soon learns the problems of the monarchy and the plight of the poor which will eventually lead to the French Revolution. She also finds herself torn between her true love for the independent, but lower-class Andre and her duties as a member of aristocracy and a trusted subject of the King and Queen. Written by Hailey-7

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

Japan | France

Language:

English | German

Release Date:

3 March 1979 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Berusaiyu no bara 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 »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Japanese translator Frederik L. Schodt translated the entire "Rose of Versailles" manga into English as a reference for the filmmakers, but gave the only copy of the translation to them and it was lost. See more »

Goofs

In the ballroom scene we see a string quartet and a harpsichordist. However, we hear the soundtrack of a string orchestra. See more »

Connections

Remake of The Rose of Versailles (1979) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Anti-adventure

Jacques Demy's movie of Lady Oscar frequently moved me. It is not a "swashbuckler" in spirit, it does not glamourise violence; it is not a movie about "girl power". It is a tragedy that raises important questions about freedom and gender. After becoming father to a series of daughters whose mother dies in childbirth, Général de Jarjayes decides that his latest daughter will in fact be a son, Oscar, and brings her up to be an heir and defender of the de Jarjayes name. He is delighted to find her a position as bodyguard to Marie Antoinette. Oscar is unquestioning of the system into which she is inducted, a bubble of privilege, acid wit, and decadence. She is dutiful and she "knows her place". At the same time the young boy and later groom who was her companion when Oscar grew up seems to have much more class consciousness.

What her gender transformation helps to do is to de-romanticise the material, when Oscar accepts a duel, the result, devoid of machismo, comes off as a banal murder, which is precisely what it is. It is difficult to wholeheartedly see Oscar as an éoniste or transgender hero as her identity as Oscar is created for her by her father. Indeed her self-actualisation is intertwined with her accepting a more female identity. On the other hand she does use her identity as Oscar to react against male society, and becomes a role model for some of the Versailles women.

Oscar, despite adopting a male role, is not free. This is potentially quite an important point of the movie, equality and freedom are not the same thing. Her role is to hang around the wilful and indolent Antoinette, and she develops a strong sense that her life has become meaningless. To become a man is not to have meaning, it's an escape from a trap within a trap, the outer trap being the Ancien Régime in the case of this movie. When Oscar attempts to enter a regiment, her male soldiers refuse to obey her, and her superior officer gives her no support whatever. In any case the regiment only exists to suppress the people.

At a very late stage Oscar finds freedom in an act of defiance. You can feel the weight lift off her shoulders as she spends her first day as a truly free adult, despite residing in a prison cell. This feels very contemporary, freedom is something very few of us are born with, it's something we have to seize, it's profoundly personal and cathartic.

Another reviewer on this site refers to Barry Lyndon as inspiration, "Now the magic of that was its carefully spaced vacuums. It had engineered emptiness, something that only a master could do." That is definitely something Lady Oscar is attempting, in my belief it worked better than my fellow reviewer felt.

A note on historical accuracy. Thomas Jefferson described Marie Antoinette as, "...proud, disdainful of restraint, indignant at all obstacles to her will, eager in the pursuit of pleasure, and firm enough to hold to her desires, or perish in their wreck." That is exactly how she is portrayed in Lady Oscar by Christine Böhm. Jefferson also describes the relationship between the King and the Queen thus, "he had a Queen of absolute sway over his weak mind and timid virtue..." Again this seems to have been very well captured in the movie.

Lady Oscar is a politically complex movie which seems often to have been misjudged by relying on a fruitless comparative analysis with the animé and manga sources of the story. Whilst actually quite serious it does however have its gorgeous moments.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 14 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed