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Molière (1978)

Original Title : Molière
Director : Ariane Mnouchkine
Writer : Ariane Mnouchkine
Genre : Biography
Drama
Country : France
Language : French
Producer : Claude Lelouch
Music : René Clemencic
Photography : Bernard Zitzermann
Distributor : Great Performances
IMDB ID : 0077941
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poster for "Molière" by Ariane Mnouchkine (1978)
Molière (1978) - Ariane Mnouchkine
 

Starring

Philippe Caubère Molière/La Mort
Marie-Françoise Audollent La Grange
Frédéric Ladonne Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, enfant
Julien Maurel L'ami de Jean-Baptiste
Philippe Cointepas Les comerades de Jean-Baptiste
Maurice Chevit Le Curé de l'école
Odile Cointepas La Mère (Marie Cressé
Armand Delcampe Le Père
Jean Dasté Le Grand-Père
Mario Gonzáles Scaramouche/Jean-Baptiste Lully (as Mario Gonzalès
Guy-Claude François Les dévots
Jean-Pierre Dougnac Les dévots
Alfred Simon Les dévots
Michel Heudebert Les dévots
Claude-Emile Rosen Les dévots
Gérard Croce Lieutenant de Police Nèfle
Christophe Allwright Le Collégien sur le mur
Joséphine Derenne Madeleine Béjart
Louba Guertchikoff Marie Hervé, veuve Béjard
Jean-Claude Bourbault Louis Béjart
Françoise Jamet Geneviève Béjart
Claude Merlin Joseph Béjart
Michel Toty Decartes
Fabrice Herrero Mazarin
Marilu Marini La Reine
Jacqueline Staup Les Comédiens de l'Hôtel de Bourgogne
Marie-Ange Dutheil Les Comédiens de l'Hôtel de Bourgogne
Jacques Ebner Les Comédiens de l'Hôtel de Bourgogne
Geneviève Rey-Penchenat La femme au pain (as Geneviève Rey
Myrrha Donzenac La femme violée
Clémence Massart-Weit Marotte (as Clémence Massart
Serge Coursan M. Dufresnes
Daïna Lavarenne Mme. Dufresnes
Maxime Lombard Maime
Norbert Journo Gros-René du Parc
Nicole Félix Catherine de Brie
Rémy Carpentier Edmée de Brie
Lucia Bensasson Thérèse Marquise du Parc
Hélène Cinque Armande, adolescente
Brigitte Catillon Armande Béjart
Gérard Hardy Charles Coypeau d'Assoucy
Patrice Thomère Le Prince de Conti
Daniel Mesguich Monsieur, frère du Roi
Jean-Claude Penchenat Louis XIV
Anne Demeyer La Beauval
Georges Bonnaud La Thorillière
Marc Berman Du Croisy
Vinca Probst La jeune Mariée
Roger Weber Le vieux Marié
France Trentin 1ère précieuse
Louise Mailliard 2ème précieuse
René Zosso Le Chanteur
Roger Planchon Colbert
Hubert Gignoux L'évêque
Michel Herman L'archtecte
Albert Delpy Boleau
Patrick Floersheim Le Curé
Roland Amstutz Le frère de Molière (uncredited
Sylvain Lévignac Gallois (uncredited
Jacques Nolot Extra (uncredited
 

Plot

Who was Moliere? Everyone knows his name, everyone knows he was one of the world's greatest playwrights. But who was he? Born in 1622, his real name was Jean-Baptiste Poquelin. His father was a successful tapestry-maker, his mother died when he was a boy. He grew up in the teeming streets of 17th century Paris, and was fascinated by the street fairs and traveling carnivals that flourished in spite of, or because, of the repression and hypocrisy of those cruel times. He joins a traveling theatrical troupe while still young, acts all over France and learns his stagecraft playing for brutalized peasants and cynical townspeople. Returning to Paris, he finds favor with King Louis XIV, the Sun King. His life becomes bound up with the life at the magnificent court at Versailles. And with its intrigues. He writes, stages and acts in the plays now famous all over the world. He fights with his enemies and with his friends. Success is followed by failure , defeat is followed by victory. He organizes court festivities and defends himself against court calamities. His theater is taken from life. His life is theatrical. This film tells the story of Moliere. A story as eternal as his plays, as universal as his characters, as fascinating as his life.
 

Comments

Takes you into the world of Moliere's theater., 28 August 2005 Author: donelan-1 from United States I saw this film over 20 years ago in a small art cinema, and would pay almost any price to have it on DVD. After 4 hours, it left me wanting to see more. The story, direction, photography and soundtrack are all outstanding, and (as other reviewers have remarked) many of the images are unforgettable. As a French theater director, Mnouchkine has an unsurpassed insight into both Moliere and the life of the theater. She also gives us a gripping (and historically accurate) portrayal of the precarious position of actors in Moliere's France, especially when they dared to satirize powerful people or institutions. The only other film remotely comparable is Carne's Children of Paradise, which (unlike Mnouchkine's Moliere) subordinates its portrayal of the theater world to the romantic plot. Mikhail Bulgakov, by the way, wrote a wonderful play about Moliere which is similar in tone to Mnouchkine's film.
 
poster for "Molière"
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Molière (1978) - Ariane Mnouchkine
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