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Umbrellas of Cherbourg
     

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

4.8 9
Director: Jacques Demy, Catherine Deneuve, Nino Castelnuovo, Anne Vernon

Cast: Jacques Demy, Catherine Deneuve, Nino Castelnuovo, Anne Vernon

 

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Jacques Demy's 1964 masterpiece is a pop-art opera, or, to borrow the director's own description, a film in song. This simple romantic tragedy begins in 1957. Guy Foucher (Nino Castelnuovo), a 20-year-old French auto mechanic, has fallen in love with 17-year-old Geneviève Emery (a luminous Catherine Deneuve), an employee in her widowed mother's chic but financially

Overview

Jacques Demy's 1964 masterpiece is a pop-art opera, or, to borrow the director's own description, a film in song. This simple romantic tragedy begins in 1957. Guy Foucher (Nino Castelnuovo), a 20-year-old French auto mechanic, has fallen in love with 17-year-old Geneviève Emery (a luminous Catherine Deneuve), an employee in her widowed mother's chic but financially embattled umbrella shop. On the evening before Guy is to leave for a two-year tour of combat in Algeria, he and Geneviève make love. She becomes pregnant and must choose between waiting for Guy's return or accepting an offer of marriage from a wealthy diamond merchant (Marc Michel, reprising his role from Demy's masterful debut, Lola). A completely sung movie, The Umbrellas of Cherbourg is closest in form to a cinematic opera. Composer Michel Legrand composed the score, modeling it around the patterns of everyday conversation. Umbrellas was re-released in 1997.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
Vibrant, lush, and quintessentially French, Jacques Demy's The Umbrellas of Cherbourg takes the movie musical to a whole new level. This 1964 masterpiece, which won the Palme d'Or at Cannes, tells the story of Genevieve (Catherine Deneuve), a young woman who works in her mother's umbrella shop and who falls desperately in love with a young auto mechanic (Nino Castelnuovo). The Umbrellas of Cherbourg is more of an opera than a musical, as even the dialogue is sung. The overall effect is superb, thanks to composer Michel Legrand, whose jazzy, lyrical score is smooth perfection. Adding to the film's charm are vibrant, color-coordinated costumes and sets that create a fairy-tale atmosphere. In place of a fairy tale's obviousness, though, the film has an ambiguous and detached tone that plays superbly off its larger-than-life staging. Demy's tale moves deftly through some sly social observations, telling a story of a love not so much tragically doomed as irreconcilable with the everyday realities of life. The film made Catherine Deneuve a star, and it's easy to see why: She's beautiful, of course, but she evokes both passion and despair with a quiet understatement that is more haunting and resonant than overtly affecting. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg is a musical classic that leaves one with more than lingering melodies after its closing credits.
All Movie Guide - Lucia Bozzola
A visually intoxicating "film in music," Jacques Demy's Les Parapluies de Cherbourg (1964) pays homage to the Hollywood musical while undercutting the genre's candy-coated sentiment. Focusing on daily rituals and a typical story of young love and thwarted dreams, within an ultra-romantic riot of color and nonstop music and singing, Demy lifts the film above its mundane context while staying true to its unvarnished view of class divisions and youthful fantasy. With all the dialogue sung to Michel Legrand's score, from gas station business to the declaration of devotion between Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo, and the polychromatic costumes coordinated to match production designer Bernard Evein's ornate wallpaper and newly-repainted Cherbourg locations, Demy creates the ultimate musical dream world. Yet that world is ruled by bourgeois prejudices that no adolescent romance can subvert, even on a snowy Christmas night. Winner of the Palme d'Or and Best Actress prizes at the Cannes Film Festival, Les Parapluies de Cherbourg became an international sensation, turning neophyte Deneuve into a star and garnering Oscar nominations for Demy's script, Legrand's score, and the transcendent ballad "I Will Wait for You." Badly faded by the 1970s, it was re-released and restored to its original brilliance in 1992, after years of effort by Demy, Deneuve, Legrand, and Demy's widow, Agnès Varda.

Product Details

Release Date:
04/11/2017
UPC:
0715515196819
Original Release:
1964
Rating:
NR
Source:
Criterion
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Sound:
[DTS 5.1-Channel Surround Sound, Dolby AC-3 Surround Sound]
Time:
1:32:00
Sales rank:
10,135

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Catherine Deneuve Genevieve Emery
Nino Castelnuovo Guy
Anne Vernon Madame Emery
Marc Michel Roland Cassard
Ellen Farner Madeleine
Mireille Perrey Aunt Elise
Alfred Wolff Actor
Jean Champion Aubin
Philippe Dumat Actor
Dorothée Blanc Girl in Cafe
Harald Wolff Dubourg
Paul Pavel Actor
Rosalie Varda Francoise Cassard

Technical Credits
Jacques Demy Director,Screenwriter
Mag Bodard Producer
Anne-Marie Cotret Editor
Gilbert de Goldschmidt Producer
Bernard Evein Art Director
Michel Legrand Score Composer,Musical Direction/Supervision
Jacqueline Moreau Costumes/Costume Designer
Jean Rabier Cinematographer

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