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Liliom (1934)

Unrated | | Drama, Fantasy | 15 May 1934 (France)
Two women love the same man in a world of few prospects. In Budapest, Liliom is a "public figure," a rascal who's a carousel barker, loved by the experienced merry-go-round owner and by a ... See full summary »

Director:

Fritz Lang

Writers:

Ferenc Molnár (play) (as Franz Molnár), Robert Liebmann (adaptation) | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Charles Boyer ... Liliom Zadowski
Madeleine Ozeray ... Julie Boulard / Liliom and Julie's daughter
Robert Arnoux Robert Arnoux ... Le tourneur (the Lathe Turner)
Roland Toutain ... Le marin ivre (The Drunken Sailor)
Alexandre Rignault ... Hollinger
Henri Richard Henri Richard ... Le commissaire - The Commissioner
Marcel Barencey Marcel Barencey ... Le policier du Purgatoire - Purgatory Cop (as Barencey)
Raoul Marco ... L'inspecteur - The Detective
Antonin Artaud ... Le rémouleur (The Knife Grinder)
Léon Arvel Léon Arvel ... L'employé du commissariat (Police station employee)
René Stern René Stern ... Le caissier - Cashier
Mimi Funes Mimi Funes ... Marie (as Mimi Funès)
Maximilienne Maximilienne ... Mme. Menoux
Viviane Romance ... La marchande de cigarettes - Cigarette Girl
Mila Parély Mila Parély ... La dactylo - Typist
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Storyline

Two women love the same man in a world of few prospects. In Budapest, Liliom is a "public figure," a rascal who's a carousel barker, loved by the experienced merry-go-round owner and by a young, innocent maid. The maid, Julie, loses her job after going out with Liliom; he's fired by his jealous employer for going out with Julie. The two lovers move in with Julie's aunt; unemployment emasculates him and a local weasel tempts him with crime. Julie, now wan, is true to Liliom even in his bad temper. Meanwhile, a stolid widower, a carpenter, wants to marry Julie. Is there any future on this earth for Julie and Liliom, whose love is passionate rather than ideal? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Fantasy

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

15 May 1934 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

Liliom See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (edited) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film was included on Disc 2 of the Carousel (1956) 50th Anniversary DVD. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Liliom Zadowski: Step right up, ladies and gentlemen! The Hippo-Palace, elegant amusement for all! Glad to see you back, ma'am. You should buy a season pass! Just like a jockey, grip with your knees! Careful with your stockings! Calling all riders! Saddle up!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The two angels who play such an important role in the film are completely unmentioned in the cast. See more »

Alternate Versions

The original video release of this (on Sinister Video) in 1998 did not have subtitles, and was cut by half-an-hour. The current DVD and VHS release on Kino has subtitles and is the full-length version of the film. See more »

Connections

Featured in Cinema's Exiles: From Hitler to Hollywood (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Viens gosse de gosse
(uncredited)
Written by Jean Lenoir
See more »

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User Reviews

 
A lot tougher and far more heavenly than "Carousel."
21 September 2009 | by Irie212See all my reviews

"Liliom" is the only film Fritz Lang made in France, after he fled Nazi Germany and before moving to the States, and he brings all his skill and heart and humor to the wonderful Ferenc Molnar story. It must be seen-- a review of it can only give pale glimpses, such as these two lovely moments, one cinematic, one almost poetic:

First, a lap dissolve to indicate, as that technique so often does, the passage of time. It begins with the principals' names carved in wood "Julie Liliom"-- then that dissolves to new names carved over those "Andre et Daniele"-- and that in turn dissolves to "Mado Jean." Lovers fading into the background as time passes. Foreshadowing doesn't get sweeter or sadder than that.

Second, when Liliom is asked his surname, he replies, "Zadowski, like my mother." It is the only indication that he is illegitimate, and that sad fact is all the more poignant for being so understated.

As I watched I kept wondering what latter-day feminists might think of this film, because Liliom slaps Julie often enough to be accused of wife-beating. But of Liliom's character, Julie says, "Bad boy. Brute. Darling." She loves him, and knows he would never really harm her. The final moments of the film deliver its message-- love people for who they are, for better or worse, you won't change their character, and even brutes have hearts and can be worthy of love.

But I save my final remark for Charles Boyer. I've always enjoyed his work, but I was not prepared for a performance of this skill and range. He is alternately charming or savage, cocky or rueful. And he gives a gorgeously physical performance-- in a class with Toshiro Mifune as Sanjuro, or Yul Brynner as the King of Siam. He is always in motion, and when he sits with Julie on a park bench for the first time, seducing her, brushing her breasts with his hands, he seduces the whole audience. Well, me anyway.


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