Julien Duvivier in the Thirties: Eclipse Series 44 [Criterion Collection] [DVD]

Four early sound films by French auteur Julien Duvivier (Pepe le Moko) - David Golder, Poil de Carotte, La Tete d'Un Homme and Un Carnet de Bal - are collected here in pristine digital transfers by the Criterion Collection. In French with English subtitles.
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Overview

Synopsis

Poil de Carotte
Adapted from various stories by Jules Renard, Poil de Carotte (The Red Head) is the poetically related tale of a delicate domestic situation. Robert Lynen plays the young son of Catherine Fourtenay. Fourtenay's husband Harry Baur knows that Lynen is not his son, but remains married for appearances' sake. Baur remains aloof and distant until he discovers the cruelties heaped upon Lynen by his resentful mother. Foster father and son develop a respect and friendship for one another that finally deepens into love. A remake of a 1925 film of the same name (also directed by Julien Duvivier), Poil de Carotte which made a star out of its juvenile lead Robert Lynen, whose genuine red head needed no touching up by the makeup men; sadly, Lynen was killed while fighting with the Resistance during World War II. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

La Tete D'Un Homme
David Golder
Director Julien Duvivier's first talking picture, David Golder was based on a novel by Irene Nemirowsky. Harry Baur plays the title character, a poor but enterprising Polish Jew who re-invents himself as a powerful New York business magnate. Now a millionaire, Golder relocates to Paris, while his profligate wife and daughter spend his money at an exhausting rate in Biarritz. When he tries to curb their spending, his wife spitefully tells him that she has been unfaithful for years and that his beloved daughter is not his child. She further dares him to "do something" about her appalling behavior. Golder gets his revenge by deliberately allowing his business to collapse, forcing his wife to take drastic measures to recoup her wealth. As a final touch, Golder enters into an oil deal that will net him a fortune then signs over all the money to his daughter -- on the proviso that his wife is cut off without a penny. This done, David Golder dies in self-imposed poverty, having learned a bitter lesson about money and happiness. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Un Carnet De Bal
In this episodic French drama, a widow uncovers a 20-year-old dance card from a ball. Just for fun, she decides to find all of her former partners. Her search becomes the framework for the episodes. ~ Iotis Erlewine, Rovi

Cast & Crew

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    Robert Lynen - Francois, "Poil de Carotte"
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    Catherine Fontenay - Madame Lepic
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    Christiane Dor - Annette
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    Louis Gauthier - Parrain
  • Harry Baur
    Harry Baur - Monsieur Lepic
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