20 December 2006 | dbdumonteil
....this Leo Joannon effort is all this ...but not more!
Not unlike Julien Duvivier's "l'homme à l'imperméable" which also featured Fernandel,was also adapted from a Charles Exbrayat novel ,and was finally a failure cause Fernandel is definitely not a film noir actor.
"L'assassin Est Dans l'Annuaire" is more entertaining although it is a bizarre concoction.
Bits of melodrama show up now and than:Fernandel is alone in the world,his colleagues' laughing stock,no love of his own,he looks at the orphans who play in the park under their teacher's watchful eye;Marie Dea"s character and her little boy ,Pierre,whose photograph is in the apartment she shares with her brother but who is living in the country...Fernandel-the-man-in-search-of-love is a character he often played in the past notably in Marcel Pagnol's works ("Angèle" "Nais" whose screenplay Pagnol wrote)
Comedy: Fernandel's character is so dumb,so naive that he can be fooled by everyone.Either he is idiot,or he is a genius ,the Police say,but the shrink (played by the director) knows better.
film noir:the harbor (Rouen) ,the dark streets,the bank and his manager,a small part of a femme fatale played by Edith Scob; but the film noir soon turns to.....
...whodunit as one by one ,the gangsters are strangled by an unknown hand ...
It is a bit stodgy,but Fernandel makes it all worthwhile;no masterpiece,by a long shot,but entertaining.