Marius

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The first of a trilogy set in Marcel Pagnol's home town of Marseilles (to be followed by Fanny and César), this centres on the decision of Marius (Fresnay) to answer the call of the sea, despite opposition from his father César (Raimu), and despite his love for Fanny (Demazis). Some sniffy critics thought that playwright Pagnol shouldn't have dabbled in celluloid at all: Richard Griffith, in The Film Since Then, considered his output 'not part of a purposeful cinema'. In place of purpose, these films display such old-fashioned virtues as truth to life and boundless humanity; they also contain some of the fruitiest acting under the sun, particularly from Raimu. This first instalment, notably more boisterous than the others, was directed by Korda on a whistle-stop tour of France; by the end of the year he had crossed the Channel, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Release details

Duration: 122 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Alexander Korda
Screenwriter: Marcel Pagnol
Cast: Raimu
Pierre Fresnay
Orane Demazis
Alida Rouffe
Fernand Charpin
Robert Vattier

Average User Rating

5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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Charlotte

This is the first of three films which are Chekhovian in their ability to make us laugh and cry in equal measure. Raimu (whom Orson Welles described as the geatest actor of all time) is matched by a heart-rendingly good cast, most of whom had appeared with Raimu in the stage version. All of life is contained in this small Marseille community, written by Marcel Pagnol, perhaps the greatest French dramatist of the 20th century. Watch this (and the sequels) and discover what it means to be human.

Charlotte

This is the first of three films which are Chekhovian in their ability to make us laugh and cry in equal measure. Raimu (whom Orson Welles described as the geatest actor of all time) is matched by a heart-rendingly good cast, most of whom had appeared with Raimu in the stage version. All of life is contained in this small Marseille community, written by Marcel Pagnol, perhaps the greatest French dramatist of the 20th century. Watch this (and the sequels) and discover what it means to be human.