Ils Etaient Neuf Celibataires (1939)

Genres - Comedy  |   Run Time - 120 min.  |   Countries - France  |  
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Filmmaker Sacha Guitry's only cinematic contribution for 1939 was Ils Etaient Neuf Celibataires, released stateside as There Were Nine Bachelors. Set sometime in the past, the story gets under way when a new law calls for the expulsion of certain foreigners from Paris. Among those slated for deportation is Polish stage star Elvire Popesco. Guitry plays an opportunist who offers to help Popesco remain in France in exchange for her help in a highly suspicious "lonely hearts" scam. Our so-called hero intends to marry off nine elderly bachelors with an equal number of female foreign aliens, so that the latter will be able to declare themselves as French citizens. Naturally, most of the financial proceeds of this venture are to remain in Guitry's possession -- not to mention any female "fringe benefits" picked up along the way. With so complicated and convoluted a plotline, it is little wonder that Sacha Guitry's films seldom imported well, especially when decked out with inadequate English-language subtitles.

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Keywords

actor, deportation, foreign, marriage-of-convenience