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The Story of Paul (1975)

Histoire de Paul (original title)
A young man is put in the psychiatric ward of a hospital.


René Féret


René Féret
1 win. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Paul Allio Paul Allio ... Paul Darras
Michel Amphoux Michel Amphoux ... Le costaud
Roland Amstutz ... Roland - un infirmier
Pierre Banderet Pierre Banderet ... Un infirmier (as Pierre Ascaride)
Jean Benguigui ... L'Italien
Bernard Bloch Bernard Bloch ... Jacques dit l'harmonica - un fou
Claude Bouchery Claude Bouchery ... Antoine dit l'angoisse - un fou
Gildas Bourdet Gildas Bourdet ... L'interne
Isabelle Caillard Isabelle Caillard ... Brigitte
Florence Camarroque Florence Camarroque ... La psychologue
Rémy Carpentier Rémy Carpentier ... L'infirmier
Philippe Clévenot Philippe Clévenot ... L'amnésique
Georges Conti Georges Conti ... Le mystique - un fou
Gérard Cruchet Gérard Cruchet ... Un malade de la salle B.
Jean Dautremay Jean Dautremay ... La voix forte - un fou


Following a failed suicide attempt, Paul, a young man, is sent to a psychiatric hospital. In a state of shock, he refuses to eat and drink. After a while, in order to make him go straight, the doctors have him transferred to ward B, where the methods used are more brutal and the patients more dangerous. Paul finally yields and becomes the "obedient madman" he is supposed to be. Written by Guy Bellinger

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First film of René Féret and Paul Allio. See more »

User Reviews

A highly original film about laws and mechanism of a madhouse ! ! ! !
14 February 2008 | by FilmCriticLalitRaoSee all my reviews

French film maker René Féret made his début with this film in 1974.It was his first critical success and applause for it came from famous French philosopher Michel Foucault who compared this film to British master Ken Loach's film "Family Life".This comparison is absolutely valid as like Ken Loach who has been an ardent supporter depicting the cause of English life in his films,René Féret has also championed the cause of Northern France in films.For those who are bothered about story and plot there is not much of hope.The real story of this film,if there is any story,is to be judged by the fact that film's helpless protagonist Paul has been condemned to a madhouse after a failed suicide attempt.Paul's plight is the central focus of the film as in psychiatric ward,he is compelled neither to have any history nor any story.What we see in this film is a sad tale which takes place in a psychiatric hospital whose inmates,doctors live according to their own set of rules.As a scathing attack on the absurdity of system in French mental institutions,L'histoire de Paul won Jean Vigo award in 1974.

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Release Date:

15 October 1975 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Pauls Geschichte See more »

Filming Locations:

Armentières, Nord, France See more »


Box Office


FRF200,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

Production Co:

Les Films Arquebuse See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

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