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Directed by Claude Autant-Lara

France 1956 80 mins. In French

One of the first films to criticize, albeit humorously, the less than patriotic behavior of some French citizens during World War II, the alternatively titled Four Bags Full and La Traversée de Paris was voted Best Film of 1956 by French film critics. Two unlikely companions—a garrulous, resourceful artist (Jean Gabin) and a nervous cab driver (Bourvil)—try to transport four suitcases of black-market pork across Paris during the German Occupation. They must dodge German patrols, French police, hungry dogs, roadblocks, collaborators, and air raids during a blackout. While one tries to make the journey as directly as possible, the other seems to create, and then surmount, obstacles for the fun of it. “Explosively hilarious.”—Pauline Kael, The New Yorker.

Genres: Comedy, Drama

Appears in: Classic French Cinema