The Mark of the Day (1949)

  |  Drama


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2 January 2009 | dbdumonteil
| Dark as a dungeon.
"le Point Du Jour" did not look like the other movies of the era.There are no principals,no real plot and it's centering on the mine itself.No melodrama,no disaster,most of the time it's the miners' daily life;their day begins "Au Point Du Jour" (at daybreak)and most of them seem happy.Only a little boy wants to get out of this place and his mother does not seem to understand him;his sister suggests he learn another job,but oddly ,as she has given him a compass for his fourteenth birthday ,that he may feel like studying does not cross her mind.What's really strange (and quite disturbing for today's audience)is that these people do not realize their sons and daughters could ask for more.It's remarkable that the long flashback (which comes out of the blue)shows that the class struggle is a thing of the past and so are strikes -now that the miners have gone in France,there are still strikes !-.The ending is even more intriguing and it reminds one of that of "Metropolis" (1926).Capital (represented by a young engineer) and labor will walk hand in hand for the sake of the production.

It does not put a question mark over Daquin's competence .But his vision is somewhat biased ,influenced by communist ideology .That a miner can be proud of his job is legitimate.However,boiling down the problems of the minors to a (gentle) conflict between an old executive (René Lefevre)who treats the miners like soldiers and a young "human" one (Jean Desailly) is quite simplistic.

A very young Michel Piccoli appears as the boy's sister's fiancé.

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Release Date:

7 April 1949



Country of Origin


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