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Grand Illusion

Grand Illusion

A Feature film by Jean Renoir

Produced by Les Réalisations d'Art Cinématographique (RAC)

Release in France : 04/06/1937

    Synopsis

    During 1st WW, two French officers are captured. Captain De Boeldieu is an aristocrat while Lieutenant Marechal was a mechanic in civilian life. They meet other prisoners from various backgrounds, as Rosenthal, son of wealthy Jewish bankers. They are separated from Rosenthal before managing to escape. A few months later, they meet again in a fortress commanded by the aristocrat Van Rauffenstein. De Boeldieu strikes up a friendship with him but Marechal and Rosenthal still want to escape...

    Source : IMDb

    Actors (19)

    Production and distribution (3)

    Film exports/foreign sales :

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    Box office: Timeline

    International releases (8)

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    TV broadcasts: details by country

    Subject

    According to Renoir's memoirs, von Stroheim, despite being born in Vienna, Austria (then the Austro-Hungarian Empire) did not speak much German, and struggled with learning the language along with his lines in between filming scenes.

    The exteriors of "Wintersborn" were filmed at the Haut Koenigsbourg Castle in Alsace. Other exteriors were filmed at the artillery barracks at Colmar (built by Wilhelm II) and at Neuf-Brisach on the Upper Rhine.

    An early script version had Rosenthal and Maréchal agreeing to meet in a restaurant at the end of the war. In the final scene, everyone there would be celebrating the armistice, but instead of these men, there would be two empty chairs at a table.

    Renoir was a French aviator during World War I. Gabin wears Renoir's uniform in the film.

    In Grand Illusion, director Jean Renoir uses the First World War (1914–1918) as a lens through which to examine Europe as it faces the rising spectre of fascism (especially in Nazi Germany) and the impending approach of the Second World War (1939–1945). Renoir's critique of contemporary politics and ideology celebrates the universal humanity that transcends national and racial boundaries and radical nationalism, suggesting that mankind's common experiences should prevail above political division, and its extension: war.

    On the message of the film, Renoir himself said, in a film trailer dating from the re-release of the film in 1958: "Grand Illusion is a story about human relationships. I am confident that such a question is so important today that if we don’t solve it, we will just have to say ‘goodbye’ to our beautiful world."

    Source : Wikipedia

    Full credits (10)

    Assistant directors :

    Jacques Becker, Robert Rips

    Director of Photography :

    Christian Matras

    Assistant Operators :

    Jean Bourgoin, Claude Renoir

    Continuity supervisor :

    Françoise Giroud

    Production Designer :

    Eugène Lourie

    Screenwriters :

    Charles Spaak, Jean Renoir

    Sound Recordist :

    Joseph De Bretagne

    Editors :

    Marguerite Houllé-Renoir, Marthe Huguet

    Music Composer :

    Joseph Kosma

    Still Photographer :

    Sam Levin

    Technical details

    Feature film

    Genres :

    Fiction

    Sub-genre :

    Psychological comedy

    Themes :

    War, Freedom

    Production language :

    French

    Original French-language productions :

    Yes

    Nationality :

    100% French

    Production year :

    1937

    French release :

    04/06/1937

    Runtime :

    1 h 35 min

    Current status :

    Released

    Visa number :

    3971

    Visa issue date :

    20/03/1946

    Approval :

    Yes

    Production formats :

    35mm

    Color type :

    Black & White

    Aspect ratio :

    1.33

    Audio format :

    Mono

    Posters (1)

    Director

    Festival Selections (7)

    Academy Awards - 1939

    Academy Awards (United States, 1939)

    Selection

    Nomination for Best Motion Picture of the Year

    Venice International Film Festival  - 1937

    Venice International Film Festival (Italy, 1937)

    Selection

    Official Competition

    Awards

    Academy Awards - 1939

    Academy Awards (United States, 1939)

    Awards

    Academy Award for Best Film