Sénéchal the Magnificent (1957)

  |  Comedy

Sénéchal the Magnificent (1957) Poster

Sénéchal, an actor touring the provinces with the "Tournées Carlini" does not meet the success he thinks he deserves. One night in Dreux, he finds himself without his luggage and dressed up... See full summary »


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20 July 2010 | dbdumonteil
| The great pretender
Jean Boyer made lots and lots of comedies in a long lucrative career.He never made a single movie you would call "art house" cinema ,but who cares ?His huge filmography includes enjoyable stuff such as " Circonstances Atténuantes" "La Chaleur Du Sein" "Garou-Garou Le Passe Muraille" or "Le Trou Normand" .The first two movies owe a lot to Michel Simon and Arletty;the last ones to Bourvil.Which means that Boyer's movies depend on the actors:and when you deal with Fernandel,you play safe.

"Senechal" is thoroughly enjoyable for it is primarily a one man show;Fernandel is the only principal and the movie seems to be made of sketches,all of them being much fun to watch.

A failed stage actor is on the dole after they close the play.He used to play a Legionnaire and a true military man mistakes him for a true officer for he is wearing the uniform.He invites him to his place where his wife ,who has probably listened to Edith Piaf's songs a bit too much ("Mon Légionnaire" ,"Le Fanion De La Légion")becomes crazy about him.The impostor's depiction of Africa is priceless "there it's not like here ,it's different,they don't do what we do" So is that of the Honduras when Fernandel is mistaken for a consul :"it is wet in the rainy season" A failed actor on stage,Senechal becomes a wonderful actor in real life and he begins to play his roles in the real world.When he returns to stage ,completely voiceless,he will get his own back on the writers by turning a stodgy melodrama into a farce (maybe recalling Pierre Brasseur's treatment of L'Auberge Des Adrets " in "Les Enfants Du Paradis ")

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