Fanfan La Tulipe (Fan-Fan the Tulip) (1953)
Pauline Kael once characterized the French adventure film Fanfan the Tulip as a "Louis XV western". This is a pretty broad interpretation, though it is true that the film never stops moving--an excellent method of sustaining audience attention and plugging up the plot holes. Gerard Philipe plays Fanfan, a handsome, athletic and self-impressed young peasant soldier. Fanfan is as adept in the boudoir as on the battlefield; it has been prophesied that he will wed the king's daughter, thus he wants to get as much practice as possible. Fanfan's many conquests include Gina Lollobridgida and Genevieve Page, which may be why this film did so well in the States. Fanfan the Tulip is available in several shorter versions, one of which has been redubbed Soldier in Love. … More
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Critic Reviews for Fanfan La Tulipe (Fan-Fan the Tulip)
You get a sense not only of Philipe's professional training, which clearly honed his skills in choreography and movement, but also of his natural charms. That the actor performs so effortlessly, so casually, is the real magic here.
Starring the go-to couple of Gérard Philipe and Gina Lollobrigida, it features duels, chases and low-cut costumes, all in glorious black and white.
Enjoyable but undeniably creaky; what played as glorious period tomfoolery to European festival juries and discerning U S audiences in the early 1950s now just seems quaintly pleased with itself.
Christian-Jaque gets a bouquet for his effort, even though it's just this side of being complete.
Cahiers-savvy cinephiles will recognize Fanfan as the type of handsome prestige production that the French New Wave overthrew in the early '60s, but this example of the 'cinéma de qualité' is hardly a musty artifact.
Even though the film moves at a snappy pace, its story still doesn't move fast enough.
...a perfectly jolly swashbuckler...if a bit dated.
Audience Reviews for Fanfan La Tulipe (Fan-Fan the Tulip)
Fanfan La Tulipe is a charming adventure romance comedy infused with enjoyable sword choreography featuring a mischievous Fanfan in search of love and destiny. Playful.More
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