César runs a bar along Marseilles’ port, assisted by his 23 year old son, Marius. Colorful characters abound: M. Panisse, an aging widower and prosperous sail maker; Honorine, a fishmonger with a sidewalk stall near the bar; her daughter, Fanny, who helps her sell cockles; and, various old salts. Friends since childhood, Fanny and Marius love each other, but Marius has a secret wanderlust: every ship’s whistle stirs a longing for foreign lands. When M. Panisse seeks Fanny’s hand in marriage and when a departing clipper needs a deckhand, Marius and Fanny must decide who and what they love most. César, with his generous, comic spirit, tries to guide his son. –IMDb
The first motion picture producer ever to receive a knighthood from the British Crown, Alexander Korda was a guiding force behind the British film industry throughout the 1930s as a studio chief, producer, and sometime director, and continued as a major film producer until his death in early 1956. Indeed, he was the single most important movie producer ever to work in England following the advent of sound, and the closest that the British film industry ever got to having a Hollywood-style mogul in its midst. Ironically, although he became synonymous to the world with British films, Korda was Hungarian-born, and had made movies in Budapest, Vienna, Berlin, and Hollywood without finding any sustained success before setting up shop in London in 1932. He was a crafty businessman as well as a flamboyant personality; he favored bold, ambitious, opulent productions that challenged not only the financial resources of his studio at any given moment, but also the technical and creative abilities… read more
A pretty straightforward rendering of Pagnol's script, which is itself very classical. Because there's nothing conspicuously stylized about the mise-en-scene, everything hangs on the performances. Luckily, they're wonderful. Raimu & co. remind me of Julien Carette -- that effortless way they convey both their joie de vivre and their melancholy in equal measure. The gestures are exaggerated but never mawkish.
I held a marathon viewing of Marius Fanny and Cesar for a bunch of movie lovers who had never seen Pagnol. A huge success. It is so gratifying to introduce this lovely world to peoplewho don't know it. These films are teeming with life and demand to be watched and loved