5 December 2016 | dbdumonteil
A well-meaning young man is ruined and forced to sell all his goods in an auction sale ;then he gets together with shady persons who almost get him to commit a crime.
After his two masterpieces ,"Les Croix De Bois"(remade as "the road to glory" by Howard Hawks)and "Les Miserables" ,the best version ever of Hugo's classic ,he made two comedies "Tartarin De Tarascon" from Daudet and this movie,two much less ambitious works,even though Raimu was lauded for his portrayal of Tartarin.
The best of this rather slow-moving comedy is to be found in its beginning : the usurers ,attending the auction sale ,and realizing that all the stuff will never pay the young dandy's debts and concluding:"we have got to marry him";some scenes have even a real contemporary feel : the graduate -which at the time was pretty rare -being not able to find even a work-hand job,cause there are already ten of them in the place ;the scene in the job center where he can't be considered an unemployed person for he has never worked .The scene when Blanchar and his pal are hired as extras is also a good moment ("I'm going to be in the torture scene!")
Pierre Blanchar is a little miscast ,he was not a comedy actors ,and unlike Michel Simon ,he was not a good all-rounder;the latter appears at the 17th min ,then Arletty two minutes later:cause for celebration? not really ,cause they do not play together for Arletty's appearance is much too short ,and in the second part ,Florelle is no match for her.
The scenes which take place in the casino and in the luxury hotel were funnier in the later "Je Suis Une Aventurière" (Bernard remade as "Le Septieme Commandement" );here the movie drags on and Blanchar ,very impressive in dramas,is inefficient in light comedy.