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Boudu Saved From Drowning [DVD] [1967]

Michel Simon , Marcelle Hainia , Jean Renoir    Parental Guidance   DVD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: £16.26 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Boudu Saved From Drowning [DVD] [1967] + La Grande Illusion 75th Anniversary [DVD] + La Règle du jeu [1939] [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Michel Simon, Marcelle Hainia, Sévérine Lerczinska, Jean Gehret, Max Dalban
  • Directors: Jean Renoir
  • Writers: Jean Renoir, Albert Valentin, René Fauchois
  • Producers: Michel Simon
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Optimum
  • DVD Release Date: 27 Jan 2003
  • Run Time: 82 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007LZ3T
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 134,064 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

1930s comedy starring Michel Simon as Boudu, a tramp saved from drowning in the Seine by a wealthy bookseller, who provides him shelter in his bourgeois household. The unruly vagrant causes havoc in this civilised environment, seducing the bookseller's wife and his mistress, as well as striking it lucky in the lottery. Having brought anarchy to the middle class family, he eventually begins to pine for his old life and decides to return to the freedom of the river. This classic of French cinema was directed by Jean Renoir, and later remade in Hollywood as 'Down and Out in Beverly Hills' (1986).

Review

Almost 80 years on, it still has a superb energy --The Guardian

a film that feels as ripe now as it did the year it was made --Time Out

One of the greatest social comedies ever made --Total Film


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By C. O. DeRiemer HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Turning off the water in the sink is as alien an idea to Boudu as not spitting on the dining room rug. Watching him try to clean bootblack from his hands is to watch the destruction of a kitchen. He's as oblivious to others as a strong wind blowing through a garden. One critic said the character of Boudu was like a ball in a pinball machine. Boudu (Michel Simon) is a scruffy tramp who jumps off a bridge in Paris when he loses his dog. Edouard Lestingois (Charles Granval) is a chubby, middle-aged bookseller, very much a member of the bourgeoisie, who rushes out of his shop, leaps into the river, saves Boudu and takes him into his home. Lestingois has a wife who is proper and cool. He employs a maid who is lusty and accommodating. Boudu will change their lives.

Boudu is an anarchic force of nature, stuffing his sardine dinner into his mouth with his hands and spitting his wine onto the floor. For Lestingois, who at first is pleased with himself for his heroism and with taking in such a specimen of the lower class, life becomes complicated and frustrating. He enjoys his trysts with the maid, Anne-Marie, but he recognizes he's getting a bit old. "She's charming," he says, "but last night I fell asleep before I could join her. No doubt about it, I'm growing old. My pipes are weary, and soon some shepherd will lure her with his youthful flute." Boudu, however, soon wearies of sleeping in a bed and takes to sleeping in the hall, next to Anne-Marie's door. "I get bored all alone in my room," Anne Marie tells Lestingois. "I'm not exactly jumping for joy in my room, either," he says. "Are you sorry you saved him?" she asks. "At night, I am."

Madame Lestingois, however, once Boudu is convinced to get a haircut and wear a proper suit, may not be quite the piece of ice she appears to be.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterclass In Anarchic Comic Exuberance 13 Nov 2013
By Keith M TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Blu-ray
One of the most notable things about this Park Circus DVD is that its restoration (via labs in Bologna and Paris) of Jean Renoir's 1932 comic masterpiece is simply stunning (and also, for the 'Renoir completists', contains 12 seconds of previously unseen - and deliberately un-subtitled - footage, the scene where Boudu spits into the Balzac book, The Physiology of Marriage). Otherwise, of course, Boudu remains one of the most anarchic, subversive and risqué comedies, certainly of its time and arguably has maintained this position ever since. In terms of Renoir's contemporaries, for me, it is reminiscent and has common (radical) elements with films such as Luis Bunuel's Un Chien Andalou and L'Age d'Or (which preceded Boudu) and Jean Vigo's later Zero de Conduite.

Of course, at the heart of Renoir's 'farce' (a term commonly used to label Boudu, but which, for me, understates its inventiveness and social significance) is a bravura performance from the great Michel Simon as the dishevelled, eccentric, anarchic (and suicidal) tramp, Boudu, whose attempts to end it all by throwing himself into the Seine are thwarted by Charles Granval's benevolent, aristocratic (well, middle-class, certainly) bookseller, Édouard Lestingois. Thereafter, horror of horrors, Boudu reveals himself not to be the grateful, fawning apologist that Lestingois and wife Emma are (perhaps) expecting, but instead a defiant and fussy house guest ('Where would you be if Monsieur hadn't saved you? In heaven'). Of course, (as was the man's wont) Renoir's film is full of great satirical lines and moments of sharp social commentary as Lestingois exclaims, 'We have a piano because we're respectable people'.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spitting on the Pages of Balzac. 3 Sep 2012
By Bob Salter TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Blu-ray
Any film by the revered French film director Jean Renoir is well worth a look at, and this one is no exception. Although filmed way back in 1932 it is a charming social comedy that belies its years. It is also a superb elegiac photographic record of an earlier more innocent France. Unkempt, smelly, bearded, sartorially challenged tramp Boudu throws himself into the river Seine to end his miserable existence, where he is saved by affluent bookseller Lestingois who invites him into his home. Bad move! For this act of kindness his ordered world is quickly turned upside down. Boudu lacks any shred of conventional social niceties and prefers to pursue Lestingois's wife and housemaid with the sort of gusto that shows he will not be throwing himself back into the Seine any time soon. The old adage about no good deed going unpunished begins to hold credence. Even Lestigois's greatest pleasure, his nocturnal visits to his housemaids bedroom are put on hold. When asked by the maid if he regretted his decision to allow Boudu in he replies "During the day I am unsure, but at night no". When Boudu spits onto the pages of Balzac's "The Physiology of Marriage", enough is enough.

Michel Simon plays Boudu in a unique idiosyncratic style. His antics are surprising for the time, taking uncouth to the limits. Apparently 1932 audiences were shocked by his antics which does not surprise me. Gerard Depardieu revived the role in more recent years. The Hollywood film "Down and Out in Beverley Hills"(1986) was also based on the film. Collisions across the classes have always held good dramatic and comedic material. "Lady Chatterly's Lover" being a more obvious example.
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