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4.0
738 Ratings

French Cancan

Directed by Jean Renoir
France, Italy, 1955
Comedy, Musical, Drama

Synopsis

French Cancan, Renoir’s exhilarating tale of the opening of the world-renowned Moulin Rouge, is a Technicolor tour de force starring Jean Gabin as a wily impresario juggling the love of two beautiful women in nineteenth-century Paris.

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French Cancan Directed by Jean Renoir

Critics reviews

This is Renoir, so the film is less about a visionary artiste and more about the bustle of lives and loves around him; its power lies in its diffuseness. By playing Gabin’s typically contained performance against the vitality of the dancers, the film conveys something ineffable about the nature of the creative act.
October 28, 2015
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For the most part, the musical performances in French Cancan are modest and truncated, making an appearance before graciously bowing to dialogue and drama. The exception—and it’s a big one—is the grand finale, a 20-minute string of extended numbers where music and drama merge, culminating in the dance of the title (possibly the most kinetic scene Renoir ever shot) and tying the narrative with a bow.
August 26, 2013
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It had its Paris premiere in May 1955 and was mostly successful as a fun musical with both the critics and the public. In later decades, the critics around the world hailed the magnitude of Jean Renoir’s achievement in employing and exalting the cancan as a metaphor for all artistic endeavors. Ultimately, French Cancan has turned out to be the happiest and most exuberant ripple in Renoir’s career as a river of personal expression.
August 02, 2004
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