Jean Grémillon

Remorques

Remorques

Jacques Prévert cowrote this atmospheric tale of the romantic trials of a tugboat captain, played by the iconic French star Jean Gabin. For André and the other members of the Cyclone’s crew, existence is harshly divided between the danger of the stormy seas and the safety of life at home with their patient women. When André meets temptation in the form of the alluring Catherine during a risky rescue, he comes perilously close to betraying his wife of ten years. The haunting Remorques is distinguished by beautiful tracking shots and cunning special-effects work.

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Collector's Set

Eclipse Series 34: Jean Grémillon During the Occupation

Jean Grémillon

DVD Box Set

3 Discs

$35.96

Remorques
Cast
Jean Gabin
Captain André Laurent
Madeleine Renaud
Yvonne Laurent
Michèle Morgan
Catherine
Charles Blavette
Gabriel Tanguy
Jean Marchat
Marc, captain of the <i>Mirva</i>
Nane Germon
Renée Tanguy
Jean Dasté
Radio
René Bergeron
Georges
Henri Poupon
Dr. Maulette
Anne Laurens
Marie Poubennec
Marcel Pérès
Le Meur
Marcel Duhamel
Pierre Poubennec
Henri Pons
Roger
Sinoël
Shipowner
Fernand Ledoux
Kerlo
Credits
Director
Jean Grémillon
Produced by
André Paulvé
Based on the novel by
Roger Vercel
Screen adaptation by
André Cayatte
Scenario and dialogue by
Jacques Prévert
Cinematography
Armand Thirard
Cinematography
Louis Née
Production design
Alexandre Trauner
Editing
Yvonne Martin
Music
Alexis Roland-Manuel

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Jean Gabin

Actor

With his penetrating gaze, quiet strength, and unshakeable everyman persona, Jean Gabin was the most popular French matinee idol of the prewar period, and remains one of the great icons of cinema. Though his parents were cabaret performers, Gabin—born Jean-Alexis Moncorgé in 1904—put off show business at first, working instead as a laborer for a construction company. He eventually followed in his family’s footsteps, though, appearing onstage at various Paris music halls and theaters, including the Moulin Rouge. This led to roles in silent films, but it was with the advent of sound that Gabin found his true calling—even if his quiet stoicism was what he would become best known for. His work with director Julien Duvivier would prove his most important: they collaborated on two successful films in the midthirties (Maria Chapdelaine and La bandera), but it was their third, Pépé le moko, that, in creating the romantic criminal antihero archetype, shot Gabin into the stratosphere. As Michael Atkinson has written for Criterion, “Without its iconic precedent, there would have been no Humphrey Bogart, no John Garfield, no Robert Mitchum, no Randolph Scott, no Jean-Paul Belmondo (or Breathless or Pierrot le fou), no Jean-Pierre Melville or Alain Delon, no Steve McQueen . . .” Soon after Pépé, Renoir’s antiwar masterpiece Grand Illusion hit, and it was an even bigger smash, cementing Gabin’s superstar status; in this and all of his most successful roles (La bête humaine, Le jour se lève), Gabin played some form of working-class social outcast, and he always provided audiences with a strong point of identification. Following a brief, less successful stint in Hollywood and a period of fighting with the Allies in North Africa during World War II, Gabin saw his film career slow down, and he appeared mostly in supporting roles for a while (including in Ophuls’s Le plaisir). Jacques Becker’s 1954 heist thriller Touchez pas au grisbi was the comeback he needed, and it propelled him into a successful second act, which lasted until his death in 1976.