Producer/director Sacha Guitry's contribution to the 1956 film season was the free-flowing historical pageant Si Paris Nous Etait Conte (If Paris Were Told to Us). Guitry himself appears as the ghost of King Louis XI, who relates the story of Paris to a group of fascinated modern-day students. As usual, Guitry manages to "humanize" history by depicting the great men and women of France in amusing warts-and-all fashion. Symbolizing the indomitable spirit of Paris is Robert Lamoureaux as Latude, a prisoner of the Bastille who repeatedly tries to escape, and just as repeatedly is captured and thrown back in jail. A note of pathos is provided by Jacques de Feraudy as the dying Voltaire. Though Sacha Guitry suffered a stroke and was confined to a wheelchair throughout much of the filming of Si Paris Nous Etait Conte, he still had two more films left in him before his death in 1957--just 10 days after Bastille Day.
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