Crainquebille is the name of a fruit and vegetable peddler (Maurice de Feraudy) who, accused of having insulted a policeman, becomes trapped in the bureaucratic web of French justice. He is sent to jail; after release, his bourgeois customers shun him, but at the point of suicide he is redeemed by an orphan newsboy (Jean Forest, an amazingly sensitive and expressive child found by Feyder on the streets of Montmartre). Feyder filmed on location around the market area of Les Halles and in some of the oldest areas of Paris. D. W. Griffith allegedly said of Crainquebille, “I have seen a film which, for me, precisely symbolizes Paris.” —DC public library
A French film-maker of Belgian origins, born under the name of Jacques Frédérix in 1885. His family intended him to follow a military career, but he changed his name and chose first, the theater, and then the cinema in 1912. He debuted as a director with Gaumont in 1915. L’Atlantide brought him international fame in 1921. Thus started a cosmopolitan career with many ups and downs and films made in the studios of Paris, Vienna, Berlin, Munich, Los Angeles and London.
Returning to Paris from a disappointing stay in Hollywood, he found new inspiration with a series of films starring his talented wife, Françoise Rosay : Le Grand jeu (1934), Pension Mimosas and the famous Carnival in Flanders (1935). He died in Switzerland in 1948. —Octuor de France