451 Fanfan la Tulipe

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kinjitsu
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451 Fanfan la Tulipe

#1 Post by kinjitsu » Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:20 pm

Fanfan la Tulipe

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Legendary French star Gérard Philipe swashbuckled his way into film history as the peasant soldier Fanfan in Christian-Jaque’s devil-may-care romantic action-comedy. In eighteenth-century France, Fanfan joins King Louis XV’s army to avoid a forced marriage to a local lass. And thus begins an adventure that sees Fanfan getting himself out of close scrapes and into tight squeezes with Gina Lollobrigida’s impostor fortune teller, Adeline, on his way to fighting in the Seven Years’ War. Filled to the brim with dazzling stunts and randy innuendo, Fanfan la Tulipe, which won the best director prize at Cannes and was a smash hit upon its initial release, remains one of France’s all-time most beloved films.

Special Features

- New, restored digital transfer
- New video program about actor Gérard Philipe
- A clip from the colorized version of the film
- Theatrical trailer
- Optional English-dubbed soundtrack
- New and improved English subtitle translation
- PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by Kenneth Turan and an excerpt from Georges Sadoul's monograph on Philipe

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domino harvey
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#2 Post by domino harvey » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:06 pm

***Pity post***

Serious question: Why would they release a this title during the biggest DVD buying month of the year?

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swo17
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#3 Post by swo17 » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:09 pm

Is there a new Pirates of the Caribbean movie coming out at the same time? Maybe they're going for the confused soccer mom demographic.

P.S. This is also a pity post.

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kaujot
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#4 Post by kaujot » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:13 pm

I estimate a rough total of 6 copies within the first two months of this coming out.

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Matt
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#5 Post by Matt » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:20 pm

Is this movie really that bad? Is it at least not fun in a Stewart Granger Scaramouche kind of way?

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domino harvey
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#6 Post by domino harvey » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:21 pm

Here's the Cahiers write-up on the director with a brief remark about the film, from jdcopp's excellent blog:
Christian-Jacque

Were talent measured by productivity, he would be king; by the length of tracking shots, he would be emperor; by receipts, he would be the Pope. Unfortunately, his ambitions are more short-term. His best films (L'Enfer des anges, Les Disparus de Saint-Agil, L'Assassinat du Père Noël) today seem forced. Martine Carol deserves better than Lucrèce Borgia, Nana, and Madame DuBarry. Fanfan la Tulipe is competent, but somewhat warped and dry on a second viewing. Trying his hand at "generosity", he tripped over Si tous les gars du monde. From a commercial point of view, his success can not be questioned and his films open foreign markets to French productions. with his wife Martine, he made a triumphant tour of the world, an excellent pair of ambassadors for French cinema.It needs such. but it also needs to be rigorous with this likable and intelligent man who, for the moment, leaves cinema with only two or three morsels of anthology (the tracking shot of the song of the "p'tit cordonnier" and the horse in the mist in Sortilèges, the battle scenes from D'homme à hommes). He has defined "director", thusly, "A one-man band who while playing all his instruments must avoid cacophony." Has he avoided that in any one of his films?
"Competent" eh? Looks like Gary Tooze is gonna love it!

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#7 Post by Haggai » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:26 pm

I saw this movie during the Rialto theatrical run. I thought it was well-made and definitely enjoyable, if not quite something I'm dying to own.

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Matt
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#8 Post by Matt » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:32 pm

Eh, I'll buy it for the library if for no other reason than to have the joy of throwing out our SECAM videotape of it.

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domino harvey
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#9 Post by domino harvey » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:33 pm

Do you not normally buy every Criterion for the library anyways?

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Cinephrenic
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#10 Post by Cinephrenic » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:35 pm

Hey, I'm a Errol Flynn and Tyrone Power fan. :wink:

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domino harvey
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#11 Post by domino harvey » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:36 pm

Cinephrenic wrote:Hey, I'm a Errol Flynn and Tyrone Power fan. :wink:
That's like saying "I'm a Jurassic Park fan, I'm sure I'll love Carnosaur 2"

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Tom Hagen
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#12 Post by Tom Hagen » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:36 pm

domino harvey wrote: "Competent" eh? Looks like Gary Tooze is gonna love it!
Well the cover art does have a prominent clevage shot, so at least there's hope for another boob-tacular DVD Beaver review of the film.

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Matt
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#13 Post by Matt » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:42 pm

domino harvey wrote:Do you not normally buy every Criterion for the library anyways?
Only about half of the releases. I'm not gonna waste our money on some of that garbage.

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Cinephrenic
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#14 Post by Cinephrenic » Fri Aug 15, 2008 6:26 pm

domino harvey wrote:
Cinephrenic wrote:Hey, I'm a Errol Flynn and Tyrone Power fan. :wink:
That's like saying "I'm a Jurassic Park fan, I'm sure I'll love Carnosaur 2"
I never saw this film, but any swashbuckler film either good or bad is fun to watch for the least. For those who are already trashing the film, what exactly is wrong with it? Have people seen this?

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Florinaldo
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#15 Post by Florinaldo » Sun Aug 17, 2008 9:14 am

I remember this film as quite ordinary in the genre, in the "quality cinema" mold that was the norm in France in those days. Even Gérard Philippe's charm is not enough to really make it stand out. Il was not unpleasant, just an ordinary, if well-made, film. It's the kind of film you don't mind seeing on TV by accident on a rainy afternoon, but giving it the Criterion treatment (with extras that don't look that outstanding)?

I know even minor films have their avid supporters, but I am a bit puzzled that Criterion chose this one. Perhaps they needed to get back down to Earth after their recent high-level French titles like the two Melvilles and the three Ophüls.

If Criterion wanted to represent Philippe's work, perhaps they could have looked at Carné's Juliette or Bunuel's La Fièvre Monte à El Pao; two flawed films, but more substantial in my opinion.[/i]

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Matt
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#16 Post by Matt » Sun Aug 17, 2008 10:40 am

I don't think you can blame Criterion so much as Bruce Goldstein. He chose to rerelease it through Rialto, and Criterion releases everything Rialto rereleases.

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CSM126
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#17 Post by CSM126 » Mon Aug 18, 2008 2:43 am

Matt wrote:and Criterion releases everything Rialto rereleases.
Not everything...Murderous Maids was HvE and Diva went to Lionsgate.

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Matt
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#18 Post by Matt » Mon Aug 18, 2008 9:11 am

CSM126 wrote:
Matt wrote:and Criterion releases everything Rialto rereleases.
Not everything...Murderous Maids was HvE and Diva went to Lionsgate.
I didn't want to put a huge fine-print addenda onto my message about those titles for which DVD rights were already owned by another company, yet I knew some wiseacre was going to point out the exceptions. You forgot Godzilla and The Producers.

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rohmerin
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#19 Post by rohmerin » Mon Sep 01, 2008 12:42 am

I bought the Hungarian DVD on my Budapest holidaays for only 3 € and it's restored with both black and white, and colored versions.

This film works better as comedy than adventure. It's not a sword-blabla film (sorry, I can never write the word for the "espadachín" genre). It's a good comedy set in a war-adventure context. It's a fun film with Philiphe as comedian.

Lollobrigida's breast are so perfect/ big that when the film was released here in the poor catholic Franco's land, it was a huge scandal and everyone went to see it for her "escote".

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david hare
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#20 Post by david hare » Mon Sep 01, 2008 5:31 am

I've always had an irresistible phsyical urge whenever I watch a Christian-Jacque movie to pick my teeth. I did forty years ago and I still do. Including Fanfan.

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Knappen
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#21 Post by Knappen » Tue Sep 02, 2008 3:25 am

Drop the c. It's spelled Jaque. Don't ask me why.

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david hare
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#22 Post by david hare » Tue Sep 02, 2008 4:16 am

Neveu! I'll drop the Plaque in a minute.

I scale my teeth every nite, like a real Americaine

Mind you I do the same twitches after watching Charles Vidor.

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Re: 451 Fanfan la Tulipe

#23 Post by cdnchris » Sun Nov 02, 2008 10:13 pm

Fanfan la Tulipe

It looks nice and also hasn't been pictureboxed.

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Tommaso
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Re: 451 Fanfan la Tulipe

#24 Post by Tommaso » Mon Nov 03, 2008 8:18 am

Thanks for the review, Chris. This really looks nice.
However, being instigated by the criticism this film has gotten here, I recently borrow the German disc of "Fanfan" from the local library and watched it yesterday evening. Mind you, I'm really into those old adventure comedies and thought I would find something here that would enable me to say something good about it. But I simply cannot. This indeed is well-photographed and competently handled all around, but it misses practically everything that you'd expect: the witty dialogues are not witty, the fun isn't funny, the acting especially of Gèrard Philippe is incredibly lacking in style and elegance (I can't imagine how anyone could even think of naming him alongside Tyrone Power or Errol Flynn), and the narrative is badly motivated and very run-of-the-mill. Even Lollobrigida, cute as she is, cannot save this film.
This must be one of the worst films CC has ever released. Whether you find it worse than "The Rock" or "Armageddon" only depends on your usual viewing preferences. Why this was such a huge hit when it came out is beyond me. Completely forgettable.

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Re: 451 Fanfan la Tulipe

#25 Post by cdnchris » Thu Nov 06, 2008 3:25 pm


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