Generals without Buttons (1938)

Genres - Children's/Family, Drama  |   Run Time - 80 min.  |   Countries - France  |  
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Originally released as La Guerre des Boutons, this French social satire was adapted from the 1912 novel by Louis Pergaud. The story takes place in two farming villages, where a feud has raged for several hundred years. The crux of the problem has to do with the weather: one village continually prays for rain, while the other craves eternal sunshine. Breaking up the monotony of the nonstop feuding is the behavior of the local children, who suddenly and mysteriously begin to chant the nonsense word "gadoube." Somehow this development escalates into a full-scale "war" between the kids and the grownups, with the buttons on their clothes serving as the spoils of battle! The original Pergaud novel would be refilmed as The War of the Buttons in 1962 and 1994, the latter film set in Ireland.

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Keywords

adult [vs. child], argument, child, family, feud, France, future, parent, peace, questioning [police interrogation], rival, town