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21 user 34 critic

Bel Ami (1947)

The Private Affairs of Bel Ami (original title)
18 | | Drama | 25 April 1947 (USA)
Writer Georges Duroy (George Sanders) is one social-climbing S.O.B. who does most of his climbing over the warm (and cold) bodies of women. He begins with Rachel (Marie Wilson), a hanger-on... See full summary »

Director:

Albert Lewin

Writer:

Albert Lewin (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
George Sanders ... Georges Duroy
Angela Lansbury ... Clotilde de Marelle
Ann Dvorak ... Claire Madeleine Forestier
John Carradine ... Charles Forestier
Susan Douglas Rubes ... Suzanne Walter (as Susan Douglas)
Hugo Haas ... Monsieur Walter
Warren William ... Laroche-Mathieu
Frances Dee ... Marie de Varenne
Albert Bassermann ... Jacques Rival
Marie Wilson ... Rachel Michot
Katherine Emery ... Madame Walter
Richard Fraser ... Philippe de Cantel
John Good John Good ... Paul de Cazolles
David Bond ... Norbert de Varenne
Leonard Mudie ... Potin
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Storyline

Writer Georges Duroy (George Sanders) is one social-climbing S.O.B. who does most of his climbing over the warm (and cold) bodies of women. He begins with Rachel (Marie Wilson), a hanger-on in the cafes and Folies Bergere crowd, and then moves on to dally with Clotilde de Morelle (Angela Lansbury). Always striving to move upward on the social scale, he ditches her to marry Madeleine Forestier (Ann Dvorak). Now he gets on the fast track. He persuades Madame Walter (Katherine Emery), the wife of his publisher, to fall in love with him, and then compromises Madeleine to frame a divorce, so he can pursue Madame Walter's daughter, Suzanne (Susan Douglas, before somebody decided her later-married name was her most-often used screen name). He moves along so well that ere long he is in legal position to usurp the title of one of France's most noble houses. The moral, at the end, is it is okay to mess with French women, but triffling with French titles is going too far. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

WOMEN GROVELED AT HIS FEET... and whimpered when he paused to give them a smile!

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

18 | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 1947 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Bel Ami See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Final film of Warren William. See more »

Goofs

At 9', a piano player and a violin player are doing a number. We hear a vibrato on the violin, but the left fingers of the player are not moving at all. See more »

Quotes

Georges Duroy: [dying] I have been scratched by an old cat.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits: "This is the history of a scoundrel. The time is 1880 and the place is Paris." See more »

Connections

Remake of Bel Ami (1939) See more »

Soundtracks

The Ruins of Athens
(uncredited)
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
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User Reviews

 
The Eternal Cad
1 January 2007 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

The Private Affairs of Bel Ami gave George Sanders to play a leading role as Guy de Maupassant's gentleman cad who rises in Parisian society over the bodies of a number of seduced and abandoned women. Sanders is a former dragoon who uses his charm to acquire money and power and in the end a title of minor nobility in Third Republic France. The one woman whom he truly loves, Angela Lansbury, is forever lost to him. Would she have brought him real happiness? It's for the audience to judge.

The comparisons between Bel Ami and Sanders's Oscar winning Addison DeWitt have to be made. Both men are cynics about human nature, but whereas theater critic DeWitt is an observer and a behind the scenes manipulator of others, Bel Ami is doing it all for his own advancement. Both performances have that touch of cad about them and they rank as some of the best work George Sanders did.

Look for good performances from John Carradine as Sanders's only true male friend and Angela Lansbury who he loves, but who can't give him the social standing he needs.

Also of course look for Warren William in his farewell role as Sanders's main antagonist. A not very brave, but a fairly shrewd sort, Sanders regularly bests him until the very end.

The Private Affairs of Bel Ami was a rather daring film for Code run Hollywood, it doesn't surprise me it was an independent movie, released by United Artists.

Fans of The Eternal Cad George Sanders will eat it up.


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