6 September 2015 | dbdumonteil
A film made up of sketches by Marc Allégret,uneven but with good moments indeed.
"Dogs by the pound in the pound" A kind-hearted dog warden takes Pipo ,a stray dog ,to the pound.At the time,the rules were cruel:the animal could stay six days in a cage,but on the seventh day,if nobody had asked for it,it was killed .His boss is intractable and does not believe that dogs have their own language .However,when the night has Fallen,Pipo begins to tell his masters' tale to his fellow inmates ;Marc Allégret made his dogs speak before the second version of "101 Dalmatians".
SEGMENT ONE:Micheline Presles,Louis Jourdan,Pipo.
"Walking on a wire" The prettiest girl in town is the chemist's daughter;she's in love with a very handsome Young man who's got a secret to conceal:is he a châtelaine's son,too wealthy for a commoner?She introduces him to her so called best friends who let the cat out of the bag ,and ruin the love story which will tragically end.Not bad,with Jourdan absolutely cast against type.Is female camaraderie impossible?
SEGMENT TWO:Elvire Popesco ,Victor Boucher,Pipo.
"Good choice?' Madame has a lover and takes advantage of her hubby's absences ;one morning ,Under the blanket ,she phones her squeeze but the servant heard it all;the unfortunate cuckold tries to find his rival's first name,using a desk diary,but Pippo comes to his rescue. Popesco has plenty of go ,but the sketch remains derivative ;it proves human's ungratefulness ,as far as our four-legged friends are concerned.
SEGMENT THREE : Jules Berry,Jean-Louis Barrault,Noel Roquevert,Pipo.
"Murder mystery" Berry plays some kind of Hercule Poirot investigating in a mansion where a murder was committed.The detective story is rather poor for Agatha Christie was not on hand .But there are two good moments: A hard-of-hearing old man witnesses a quarrel between two young men but he can't hear a world of what they're saying;the same scene is shown again,this time we hear their conversation ,but the witness can't.
SEGMENT FOUR :Raimu,Andrex,Pipo.
"Christmas (baby please come home)" A Marcel Pagnol movie in miniature ;Allégret saved the best till last;although very derivative,the story retains the yuletide charm ,and Raimu as a priest who prays "La Bonne Mère" (= the good mother,Mary) to make a buck come back to his former love he got pregnant and left for Marseille town (and to make his rivals lose the game of Pétanque)is as usual terrific.There's a midnight mass,complete with heavenly choirs,Provençal pageantry and folklore.
EPILOGUE : Carette,Marcel Pérès,Pipo.
"Every dog has his day" Back to the pound,the nice dog warden is fired;before leaving ,he releases all the dogs .Freedom now,freedom for everyone!