Boudu Saved From Drowning (Bondé sauvé des eaux) (1932) - Rotten Tomatoes

Boudu Saved From Drowning (Bondé sauvé des eaux) (1932)

TOMATOMETER

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AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Having saved a scurvy street derelict from drowning himself, a wealthy Frenchman assumes responsibility for the fellow, who then proceeds to ingratiate himself into his benefactor's household with comical and confounding results. This classic Jean Renoir comedy was remade in 1986 as Down and Out in Beverly Hills.
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Art House & International , Comedy
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:
 limited
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:
Pathé Contemporary Films

Cast

Michel Simon
as Priape Boudu
Charles Grandval
as Édouard Lestingois
Charles Granval
as Monsieur Lastingois
Marcelle Hainia
as Emma Lestingois
Marcella Hainia
as Madame Lastingois
Jean Daste
as L'étudiant
Severine Lerczynska
as Anne-Marie
Max Dalban
as Godin
Jean Gehret
as Vigour
Jacques Becker
as Poet on a Bench
Jane Pierson
as Rose, the Neighbor's Maid
George Damoux
as Marriage Guest
George Darnoux
as Marriage Guest
Georges D'Arnoux
as Wedding Guest
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Boudu Saved From Drowning (Bondé sauvé des eaux)

All Critics (22) | Top Critics (4)

A beautifully rhythmed film that makes one nostalgic for the period when it was made.

August 29, 2012
New Yorker
Top Critic

Amid the early-talkie crudeness you can see Renoir discover what it means to visually evoke the unpredictable flow of life with composition, movement, and depth.

May 9, 2007
Village Voice
Top Critic

The most startling thing about Boudu is just how incredibly fresh it remains.

Full Review… | February 9, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Jean Renoir's effortless 1932 masterpiece is as informal, beguiling, and subversive as its eponymous hero.

Full Review… | January 1, 2000
Chicago Reader
Top Critic

It's hard to imagine cinema without Boudu Saved From Drowning.

Full Review… | December 16, 2010
Daily Telegraph (UK)

It's a neat idea, executed to fine comic effect thanks mainly to a larger-than-life performance from the great French character actor, Michel Simon.

Full Review… | December 16, 2010
Radio Times

Audience Reviews for Boudu Saved From Drowning (Bondé sauvé des eaux)

Jean Renoir's "Boudu Saved From Drowning" is as watchable and enjoyable today as it was 1932, and that is quite a feat.

Sherwin Liu
Sherwin Liu
½

The plot is well known by now but the inventive execution's the thing here, still fresh after so many years. But in addition to whatever entertainment or cinematically historical value contained within, here is out and out immersion into Parisian life circa 1930, before the nearly universal acceptance of the thought that "all the world's a stage" and so a look at our planet before our obsession with mirrors ("... and what's wrong with that!") changed it.

Kevin M. Williams
Kevin M. Williams

Super Reviewer

½

Anyone who has seen "Down and Out in Beverly Hills" knows the thumbnail plot of Jean Renoir's "Boudu Saved from Drowning": a nihilistic bum is taken in by a generous, upscale couple and (contrary to Hollywood formula) abuses their kindness and does not transform into a wonderful citizen. But people who saw "Down and Out" first may be surprised at just how unlikeable Boudu is, even compared with Nick Nolte's later incarnation. The character is made still more distasteful by Michel Simon's rather broad, burlesque performance (which, alas, still seems mired in silent-movie theatrics). "Boudu" makes some sharp satirical points -- such as showing the police's variable interest in finding a lost dog, depending on the stature of its owner -- but the humor suffers from stiff, outdated filmmaking. The score is almost non-existent, breeding plenty of deadly silences, and the sporadic music only occurs onscreen (examples: a marching band, a wedding orchestra, an organ grinder, a neighbor who enjoys playing flute). Also, it's a comedy that is directed like a drama -- one yearns for quicker editing and more reaction shots. Still, it was a film ahead of its time.

Eric Broome
Eric Broome

Super Reviewer

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