6.9/10
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The Devil by the Tail (1969)

Le diable par la queue (original title)
A Marquise who lures motorists to her hotel by sabotaging their cars gets more than she bargains for when one guest turns out to be a bank robber on the run

Director:

Philippe de Broca

Writers:

Daniel Boulanger (scenario and dialogue), Claude Sautet (decoupage)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Yves Montand ... Le baron César Maricorne
Madeleine Renaud ... La marquise
Maria Schell ... La comtesse Diane
Jean Rochefort ... Le comte Georges
Jean-Pierre Marielle ... Jean-Jacques Leroy-Martin, le "play-boy"
Clotilde Joano ... La comtesse Jeanne (La cousine pianiste)
Claude Piéplu ... Monsieur Patin (Le client assidu)
Tanya Lopert Tanya Lopert ... Cookie (La minette)
Marthe Keller ... Amélie (La jeune baronne)
Xavier Gélin Xavier Gélin ... Charlie (Le petit garagiste)
Jacques Balutin Jacques Balutin ... Max, un gangster
Pierre Tornade ... Schwartz, un gangster
Jeanne Berdin Jeanne Berdin ... Mme Passereau (as Janine Berdin)
Charles Mallet Charles Mallet ... Le commissaire
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Storyline

A Marquise who lures motorists to her hotel by sabotaging their cars gets more than she bargains for when one guest turns out to be a bank robber on the run

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

french countryside | bicycle | See All (2) »

Taglines:

Aw, Hell! See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France | Italy

Language:

French

Release Date:

7 February 1969 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Devil by the Tail See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

Featured in De Cartouche au Cavaleur (2013) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Lighthearted and innocent
26 December 2004 | by EpaminondasSee all my reviews

In director Philippe de Broca's vast production this is probably the most underrated effort: almost fallen into oblivion (no DVD out) this movie is a gem of wit and innocence. You have to accept the utter futility of the plot and the impossibility to believe the twists, to enjoy the grace of youth displayed by Marthe Keller (the films constantly captures her long, naked, legs as she runs or rides a bike in the French countryside), the wonderful comic performances by Marielle and Rochefort, the consummate acting of Madeleine Renaud and the serene charm of Montand.

Though extremely lighthearted and quick-paced, the film manages to be poignant thanks to the superb score by Delerue (De Broca said that he would like the piano theme he composed to be played at his own funeral). What makes this film so special for me is the feeling of freedom that radiates from the characters as they move about in this tale, completely separated from social or political issues (remember the film was made in 1968). They manage to convey innocence while frantically pursuing love, happiness and enjoying themselves.


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