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Le petit café

Weitere Titel: Das kleine Kaffeehaus (Ö)/ The little cafe (UK, USA) - Regie: Raymond Bernard - Szenario: Henri Diamant-Berger; Raymond Bernard (nach Tristan Bernard) - Kamera: Marc Bujard; Dugord - Länge: 2055m - s/w - Interpreten: Max Linder {Albert Loriflan}; Wanda Lyon {Yvonne}; Flavienne Mérindol {Edwige}; Andrée Barelly {Bérangère d'Aquitaine}; Jean Joffre {Philibert}; Henri Debain  {le plongeur}; Armand Bernard {Bouzin}; Francis Halma {Bigredon}; Major Heitner - Produktion: Films Diamant - Vertrieb: Pathé-Cinéma - Katalog-Nr.: 8479/Dez.19 - Sondervorführung: 15.11.19 (Paris/Ciné Max Linder «Trade show») – UA : 19. Dezember 1919 (Paris/ Omnia Pathé) — Weitere Auff.: 10.12.20 (Wien/ Rotenturm Kino)

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Max Linder, der unvergleichliche Meister der Situationskomik, tritt diesmal in einem größeren Filmwerk vor die große Gemeinde der Verehrer seiner fröhlichen Kunst. Tristan Bernard – in der Literatur das, was Max Linder auf der Filmbühne ist – hat in seinem berühmten Bühnenwerk “Das kleine Kaffeehaus” eine Bombenrolle für diesen Liebling der heiteren Musen geschafften. Dieses Filmwerk in sechs Teilen gibt dem glänzenden Komiker Gelegenheit, alle Register seines reichen Könnens spielen zu lassen, alle Nuancen seiner Kunst in den Dienst seiner Rolle zu stellen. Die Handlung der überaus lustig erdachten Groteske läßt sich kaum erzählen, denn Max Linder, der fast ununterbrochen auf der Bühne ist spielt nicht allen seine an und für sich komische Rolle in künstlerischer Vollendung, sondern er macht aus jeder einzelnen Geste, aus jedem einzelnen Zuge seines Mienenspiels, aus jeder Handbewegung eine grotesk-komische Affäre, und wenn je ein Publikum in Gefahr kommen kann, sich krank zu lachen, so ist dies bei dem Auftreten Max Linders in diesem Filmwerke der Fall. Das Stück bietet auch zahlreiche feinkomische Situationen, in denen sich die Mienen wieder zu einem stillen Lächeln glätten, von den Anstrengungen des Lachens erholen können, und insbesondere die Szenen mit seiner liebreizenden Partnerin Miß Wanda Lyon sind von einem feinen Humor und von echter Poesie erfüllt. Der “Filmag” Filmindustrie-A.-G. ist mit der Aufnahme dieses Filmwerkes in ihrem Verlag ein sehr glücklicher Wurf gelungen. Das Filmwerk erscheint heute auf den Wiener Filmbühnen. (Neue Freie Presse, 10.12.1920)

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Satisfactory Entertainment Should Give Fair B. O. Showing - Box Office Analysis for the Exhibitor - You aren't going to establish any laugh records with this, but at the same time it stands a good chance of giving audiences average satisfaction in the comedy line. Its comedy sequences are good when they appear and the views of Paris help things considerably when the action is inclined to drag. If you show this make a point of announcing that it marks the return to the screen of Max Linder, most popular comedian in France, after a long absence due to illness from war injuries. He has many admirers in this country and this first reappearance should attract from old time's sake. Mention the fact that this was made in Paris and that it contains many scenes shot on that city's streets. Also note the fact that "The Little Cafe" was a stage play that met with some success here. (Film Daily, Jun. 6, 1920)

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Orphelin, Albert Loriflan a été recueilli par le marquis de Caspion. Ce dernier part pour une expédition et confie Albert à son intendant Bigredon. Mais Albert, las de Bigredon s’en va. Il devient garçon de café dans un petit café des Ternes. Un jour, Bigredon apprend que Albert hérite du marquis. Il fait en sorte que le patron d’Albert qu’il a mis dans la confidence propose un contrat qui l’attache au café Philibert. Et lorsque Albert apprend qu’il est l’héritier du marquis, il décide, malgré tout de rester garçon de café le jour pendant qu’il fait la noce la nuit jusqu’au jour où Yvonne Philibert et lui tombent dans les bras l’un de l’autre. (Henri Bousquet, De Pathé frères à Pathé Cinéma (1915-1927), Bures-sur-Yvette, Editions Henri Bousquet, 1994-2004)

 

 

 

Eine Kopie des Films wird verwahrt in: Cinémathèque de Toulouse (Toulouse), Cinémathèque Royale (Bruxelles), Národni Filmovy Archiv (Praha), Gosfilmofond of Russia (Moscow), Cineteca del Friuli (Gemona), Archives du Film du CNC (Bois d'Arcy) Ein Ausschnitt des Films ist enthalten in: Le Temps de Max (TV-Dokumentation, 2000)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weitere Filmbeschreibungen/Kritiken:

 

Der mit großem Interesse erwartete Lustspielschlager der Firma Filmag mit dem König der Humoristen Max Linder Das kleine Kaffeehaus ein Vorspiel und sechs Akte ist nun erschienen und hat die Gemüter in Schwung versetzt. Max Linder, unvergleichlich in seiner Komik, wirkt hinreißend. Man hat lange nicht so herzlich gelacht. Da sind Pointen, die sich einfach nicht beschreiben lassen, die man unbedingt gesehen haben muß, um sie so recht würdigen zu können. - Der Handlung liegt ein kühner Versuch zugrunde. Aus einer dramatischen Einleitung ein Lustspiel zurechtzuzimmern, das fünf Akte füllt, ist keine Kleinigkeit. Umso bewundernswerter bleibt die Durchführung. Max Lindner zeigt in allen Phasen der “freiesten” aller Berufe so unendlich viel Geschicklichkeit, Witz und Charme, daß er unbedingt die Lacher auf seine Seite zieht. Hier liegt wieder einmal ein Lustspielstoff vor, der die Zeit überdauern wird, umsomehr als die Ausstattung glänzend und die Interieurs künstlerisch sind. (Neue Kino-Rundschau, 14.8.1920)

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ROYAL CAMELOT. — Il y a des gens qui se plaignent de la crise du camelot, qui prétendent que le camelot d'après-guerre est un «bourgeois» qui se couche de bonne heure, et qui croirait déchoir s'il ouvrait encore les portières en offrant à la porte des théâtres son journal. — Ach'tez moi la Presse, mon prince, vous allez m'étrenner!... Si notre cher camelot, à force d'avoir battu le Pavé de sa semelle de cordes, en est devenu le Roi, tant mieux pour lui! Par un juste retour des choses d'ici-bas, les Parisiens ont pu voir hier un souverain «authentique» qui, lui, était devenu camelot... Il était environ cinq heures du soir. La foule était dense sur les boulevards... Non loin du Cinéma qui porte en lettres d'or son nom, «l'Homme qui a son Ciné», le Roi de l'Ecran, Max Linder, vêtu en loqueteux, déguenillé, la casquette en arrière et les cheveux hirsutes, se promenait avec un paquet de Presse sous le bras. Dissimulé habilement un opérateur s'occupait à enregistrer la scène. Et il se passa ceci de curieux: son personnage était si remarquablement composé, que Max Linder ne fut pas de suite reconnu par les Parisiens. Pourtant certains tiquèrent. L'un d'eux, vieux boulevardier, tira sa montre, étonné de voir vendre si tôt la Presse qui a repris son heure d'avant-guerre avec «le résultat complet des cursssses!» D'autres, moins perspicaces, plus pressés, arrêtaient notre royal camelot et tendaient en vain leur deux sous; en vain, car Max Linder, camelot consciencieux, se refusait à faire payer dix centimes un numéro de la Presse... de la veille – (celle du jour n'ayant pas encore paru). Les passants finirent par s'attrouper à force d'entendre cet énergumène clamer «La Presse! Ach'tez-moi la Presse!» et refusant de la vendre!... Mais le film était tourné. Nous applaudirons quelque jour prochain Max Linder sur l'écran, dans cette nouvelle incarnation. Quand tout «le Croissant» - (où se tient le P. C. du G. Q. G. des camelots) - va apprendre la nouvelle, il est capable de bombarder Max Linder camelot honoraire. SPLEEN L'ANCIEN. (La Presse, 29.5.1919)

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"The Little Cafe,” an adaptation of the musical comedy of the same name, produced in Paris, proves to be a picture containing a number of good comedy sequences, but which often lapses into the commonplace because of lack of imagination and the knowledge of what continuous comedy is on the part of those concerned in the production. First there is a sequence well handled from practically every comedy viewpoint. Then the action takes on a commonplace appearance that registers little or anything. Thus it goes throughout. It really looks as if they had attempted to make an exact reproduction of the musical comedy and when they came to the parts where the music was important didn't have the imagination to fill in with original matter. The idea of the plot is slight but one containing rich possibilities for this field of work. Max Linder appears as a waiter in the Little Cafe. An old servant of his uncle's home learns that he is to inherit a fortune and straightway cooks up a scheme to get a cut of the money. He goes to Max's boss and influences him to sign him up for twenty years with a stipulation in the contract that whoever breaks the agreement shall forfeit half a million francs. So when Max learns of his inheritance all he can do is to stay on in the Little Cafe rather than make the forfeit. The rest of the picture is comprised of some good situations and some commonplaces, but the general effect is pleasing. Max at first tries to make the proprietor of the cafe break the contract by giving away his choicest liqueurs, but this plan fails. He then takes to going out at nights after work to other cafes, where he becomes known as an eccentric millionaire. The sequence in the cafe where he pretends to be a waiter to his party of guests in order to throw a lady friend off the right track is about the funniest of the lot. Had the picture been produced by an American director more attention would have been paid to the romantic element, which is very poorly developed here. Even in this type of comedy, which contains some knockabout work, a romantic action thread is welcome and often necessary. However, the French director has presented a number of interesting views of the Paris streets that help to make up for his frequent lapses from the proper comedy vein. The star is very good in the comedy sequences but is lost along with the humor when the director forgets. Wanda Lyon is the girl with little to do. The rest of the cast is made up of a group of players, some of whom have an excellent idea of what comedy is. (Film Daily, Jun. 6, 1920)

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NAUGHTY IS BACKGROUND FOR FUNNY MAX LINDER Naughty Paris: gay, laughing, joyous Paris – its every scintillating phase radiates from “The Little Cafe” and marks the return of Max Linder to the silver sheet. Max Linder has never been seen to such splendid advantage as in this typically French farce. He is given excellent support by Wanda Lyon, a beautiful American girl. The atmosphere is perfect, as it should be, the whole picture having been actually filmed in Paris. The story revolves around the adventures of a waiter who falls heir to two million franks just after he has signed a contract to work for the proprietor of “The Little Cafe” for twenty years. He starts leading a double life of work and play. When the aristocratic companions of his gay nights life learn that he is only a waiter they scorn him. But Max isn't long broken-hearted, for Yvonne, the cafe proprietor's pretty daughter, is worth all the others put together and has a heart balm all her own that Max finds very effective. (Bermidji Daily Pioneer, Sep. 10, 1920)

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OPINION: With the exhibitors of country demanding comedies of feature length. "The Little Cafe," starring Max Linder, is certain of an enthusiastic reception from the theatre owners. It is a well made production, embodying all of the humor of the play from which it is adapted and in addition adding many laugh provoking incidents only possible on the screen, and through the dexterity of its star. Linder shows to advantage. The interior of the little cafe, where the action centers, gives an unlimited opportunity for comedy — subtle, slapstick, and pantomime. He is of the vigorous type of comedian. There is no jesture, which could add to the various situations, omitted. Along with the laughs, there is sufficient story and romance to maintain interest, with just a touch of pathos at the end to round out the entertainment Tie-ups with restaurants for exploitation purposes can be easily accomplished. The title and the story admit of originality in advertising. SYNOPSIS: Max obtains a job in a little cafe as a waiter and is contented. In his childhood, he lived with a rich uncle, who frequently went mountain climbing. During his uncle's absence, an old family servant made life miserable for the boy. The uncle disappeared mysteriously, and after enduring the abuse of the servant for some time, Max ran away and forgot his past. In the meantime, his uncle was legally proven dead and his attorneys searched for Max to turn the fortune over to him. The old servant located Max and in conspiracy with Max's employer, influenced him to sign a contract with the cafe to continue to wait on table for twenty years or forfeit a large sum of money. Max, not knowing of his inheritance, signed. He was then apprised of his fortune. To save making the forfeit, he continued to wait on table during the day and lived like a millionaire at night. In the end, the employer relented and tore up the contract, and Max married his employer's daughter. (Exhibitors Herald, Jun. 5, 1920)

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"What the Picture Did For Me" VERDICTS ON FILMS IN LANGUAGE OF EXHIBITOR

This is a French-made picture. Dark photography, slight story, below the average compared with American features. — F. Hejtmanek. Opera House. Clarkson, Neb. — Neighborhood patronage. 12/18/20

If you like American comedy lay off this one. Star is good, but patrons don't like French comedy. — G. M. McClain. Star theatre, Barry, III. — Small town patronage. 01/08/21

One of the poorest pictures I have ever used. Patrons walked out. Too Frenchy. — W. L. Beebe. Opera House, Manito, 111. — Small town patronage. 01/29/21

Max had better stay in two-reel comedies. — Bill Leaonard, Mystic theatre, Cedarvale, Kans. —Neighborhood patronage. 03/05/21

The worst yet. This is French comedy and did not suit my patronage. I was ashamed of it and hid while the people were leaving. — Mrs. Wm. Kimbro, Greenland theatre. Greensboro, Ga. Small town patronage. 03/12/21

No good. Let it alone. — Ernest W. Hatcher, Star theatre, Harlem. Ga. Neighborhood patronage. 03/19/21

Absolutely the worst ever. Why will producers make such pictures as this? — A. R. Bird, Opera House, Arlington, 1a. — Neighborhood patronage. 05/07/21

(Exhibitors Herald, 1921)