They Were Five (1936)

  |  Drama


They Were Five (1936) Poster

Five unemployed penniless workers win 100,000 Francs with the national lottery. Instead of sharing the money, they buy a ruin and build an open-air cafe. But difficulties come to split their friendly group apart.


7.6/10
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  • They Were Five (1936)
  • They Were Five (1936)
  • They Were Five (1936)
  • Jean Gabin and Viviane Romance in They Were Five (1936)
  • Jean Gabin and Viviane Romance in They Were Five (1936)
  • Jean Gabin and Viviane Romance in They Were Five (1936)

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9 December 2003 | writers_reign
Dream Team
One for nostalgia buffs. One of a handful of movies that epitomise French cinema in the thirties. Gabin, Charles Vanel and Viviane Romance proved durable, indeed, Romance was something of a French Jeanne Crain/Linda Darnell in the forties while Vanel scored heavily in La Salaire du Peur and Les Diaboliques. Gabin, of course, proved most durable and iconic; this was made around the time of Pepe Le Moko and still to come were Quai des Brumes, Le jour se leve, and then the great post-war stuff, Touchez pas au grisbi, Le Chat, La Traversee de Paris,etc. First and last this is a Depression movie, made and released in the heart of the international slump. But it's also about comaraderie, how strong it is yet how fragile. When they don't have change of a match the 5 friends ARE strong but once they hit the numbers on the National Lottery it all begins to crumble from the inside. It's a curious mixture of the lyrical - the pastoral scenes along the Marne that would be echoed in Casque d'Or, the sentimental songs, and Gabin in full throat is something to hear - and the pragmatic - money corrupts and frailty, thy name is woman - but against the odds it works. Duvivier doesn't get too much attention today yet he remains a key player in French cinema.

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Release Date:

31 May 1938

Language

French


Country of Origin

France

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