NOTES OF A FANFAN FAN. Last night I decided yet again to put my trust in The Film Forum and give the saucy French swashbuckler Fanfan la Tulipe a try--and I had a great time. In the words of critic Georges Sadoul, "From first scene to last, I kept laughing out loud."
Tracing the misadventures of legendary French folk hero Fanfan, the 1952 movie mixes caustic mockery of the military and Dumb and Dumber comedy with fighting and stunt work that, though uneven, bristle with the same winning enthusiasm as the film's dopey hero, played by the charismatic Gérard Philipe. Gina Lollobrigida and the rest of the cast are delightful to behold.
Sadoul wrote, "The film was shot in a mood of companionship and high spirits." That's the impression that I got--the energy is catching!
After its run ends on August 3, the movie will show in Cambridge, Seattle, Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, and Washington DC.