the not sad film adaptation of “The most beautiful evening of my life”

Ironic silhouette passing in black and white film, eternal second knife that goes into the recesses of our memory, Claude Dauphin, elegant actor with a diagonal smile, wrote in 1979 one of the best books on the acting profession entitled “The Last Trombones”. On the occasion of a film by Ettore Scola, “The most beautiful evening of my life”, Dauphin corrects the peppery anecdotes that characterize the recordings, in Brunico in Lower Tyrol, and slips into formidable reflections on Diderot, the memory hiccups, and that strange work with to pretend to be someone else – while you are still yourself. It must be said that under the direction of a rather relaxed Italian director, the cast is royal: Michel Simon, Pierre Brasseur, Charles Vanel, Alberto Sordi. Either the end of the end in the form of aging monsters – and uniquely farted.

At 841 meters above sea level, our children, qualified by Claude Dauphin as“high-flying troublemakers”, is in a stalemate, clear “to make filmmakers sob”. Vanel is 80 years old, Michel Simon 78, Claude Dauphin 70. “I reckon that in all we have almost 300 years between the four of us, and that by putting ourselves at the end of each other we could witness Molière’s death in ‘Le Malade imaginaire’ in 1673”. There is an immediate heated argument in which Michel Simon points out that he is miserable in mathematics, Brasseur assures that Molière did not die on stage, and Vanel concludes: “If you have to toot for six weeks, you should keep a logbook. Hi artists! “. At dinner, in the evening, at the Hotel de la Poste in Brunico, Michel Simon says:

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“Courteline drank her absinthe every night in Wepler with Georges Auriol, Ernest La Jeunesse, Alphonse Allais, such some people, intelligent, cultured, right? And every time one of them left, those who stayed, gave him his account of stool, to the point that if he had come back unexpectedly, he would have slipped on it.One day there was only Courteline and La Jeunesse around the pedestal table, and it was finally La Jeunesse who got up.And when he left, said he to Courteline: “I have nothing to fear, my dear, you are all alone now, you will not be able to speak ill of me.” And he went away and giggled stupidly. So Courteline called the boy: “Boy ! Can you see that gentleman walking away and mocking? Well, he’s a fool! “. »During the occupation no respite for the theater

How to fart (or not) on stage

As for Charles Vanel, surprise! ‘He’s a digger and a joker. We still fear, in the studios, the soft-boiled egg that he puts in your hand, the blowpipe that sends a chickpea ten meters into the eye of the producer, the drooling glass, the sugar spoon and the pillow that farts ”. Between two make-ups, Vanel evokes “the big pair of balls” by a tenor from Toulouse, shouts Michel Simon “Chipolatas, not caviar” on the set, Brasseur decrees that he is thirsty and picks up bottles from his dressing room, and everyone is drunk. Claude Dauphin evokes the memory of Gabriele d’Annunzio, “condottiere of Italian letters, famous above all for the last sentence of one of his novels: ‘Lydio had lost his mind'”, and notes the composition of PKLG, Brasseur’s favorite cocktail. Spread the word :

“A quarter Picon, a quarter hot milk, a quarter gin. If a dose of this mixture is injected into a rabbit or guinea pig, death is immediate, accompanied by terrible convulsions ”.

Michel Simon, accompanied by a lady of little virtue, remembers a trip to Brazil, where “we gave you blowjobs for half a cruzeiro”, and talks about his friendship with a bully “who thought Milo was a famous pimp who managed to make an armless chicken work. He said, ‘That, old man, she must not have been one-armed.’ Pierre Brasseur, whose undergraduate degree is a charming gay Italian boy, notes, philosopher: “She will be perfect for crossing me, the big sweet.” In any case, there is only left that it can earn ”. The memory of Mounet-Sully, a famous tragic actor who had to stick his eyes out behind the scenes in “Oedipus”, arises: “While smearing his eye sockets with gooseberry jam, he let out a roar of pain, which spread horror in the audience up to the third gallery. Then, as it was very good jam, he sucked his fingers before returning to the stage where he received an ovation.. A professional debate ensued on a sensitive topic: how to fart (or not) on stage …

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Ettore Scola’s films are shown on television from time to time. After reading The last trombones ”, I look at him with a different eye. Michel Simon died in 1975, Claude Dauphin in 1978, Charles Vanel in 1989, and Pierre Brasseur closed his eyes while filming in Brunico. And it was Alberto Sordi who had the last word, poetic and grandiose: “We are tightropers, and we move across the void without wires. We walk between the clouds, and if we look down, we tumble. Our pendulum is humor.”.

ALSO READ> “Evenings, people, things …”: Ernest la Jeunesse’s lost theater

The last paper clipsby Claude Dauphin, Jean-Claude Simoën Editor, 1979.

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