THE BAKER’S WIFE

“The village baker cannot work because he laments his wife’s departure with a stupid, sexy shepherd; the villagers, who want their bread, organize to bring her back. Raimu’s baker is an acting classic-a true tragicomic hero-and it’s easy to agree with Orson Welles, who cited this comedy as proof that ‘a story and an actor, both superb,’ can result in ‘a perfect movie’ even if the direction and the editing are not ‘cinematic.’ Marcel Pagnol, a playwright who turned scenarist and then writer-director, adapted this classic of cuckoldry from Jean Giono’s Jean le Bleu and directed it very simply. With Ginette Leclerc (who can pout with her mouth open) as the wife…” (Pauline Kael)

1938 Marcel Pagnol 1.33:1 B&W dcp 133 min. In French with English subtitles.