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  • Irma La Douce (Widescreen)
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Irma La Douce (Widescreen)

Price: CDN$ 39.98
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Irma La Douce (Widescreen) + Avanti [DVD]
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Product Details

  • Actors: Jack Lemmon, Shirley MacLaine, Lou Jacobi, Bruce Yarnell, Herschel Bernardi
  • Directors: Billy Wilder
  • Writers: Billy Wilder, Alexandre Breffort, I.A.L. Diamond
  • Producers: Billy Wilder, Alexandre Trauner, Doane Harrison, Edward L. Alperson
  • Format: Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, DVD-Video, Subtitled, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English, French
  • Subtitles: Spanish, French
  • Dubbed: Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: MGM (Warner)
  • Release Date: April 1 2003
  • Run Time: 147 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005LOLC
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #13,521 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Product Description

Product Description

Irma, prostituée parisienne au grand cœur, prend pour patron Nestor, un ancien policier qui la sauve des griffes de son ancien souteneur. Elle l'héberge et travaille pour lui, mais bien vite, fou d'amour et de jalousie et ne supportant plus d'avoir à la partager avec ses autres clients, ce dernier met au point un brillant stratagème. Irma la douce, réalisé par feu Billy Wilder, est une comédie romantique à la française, mâtinée de poésie, dans laquelle Jack Lemmon et Shirley MacLaine forment un duo émouvant et charmant. Le rythme plutôt lent du film et les décors attachants (un Paris rêvé d'antan, noctambule et coloré ; un Montmartre d'Amélie Poulain avant la lettre.) rappellent qu'il fut adapté d'une pièce de théâtre qui connut un véritable triomphe. --David Rault


In 1963, Billy Wilder's Irma La Douce was one of the biggest box-office hits of the year, grossing twice as much as The Great Escape and The Birds. Yet this popular movie has been almost completely forgotten by film history, even to fans of Wilder or stars Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine (the same trio had made a masterpiece, The Apartment, three years earlier). It doesn't represent the best work of those legends, but Irma provides tart entertainment. At least some of the movie's popularity can be chalked up to its subject, which was pretty risqué for the time: Lemmon plays a Paris policeman who falls in love with a prostitute (MacLaine). The script was adapted from a stage musical, but Wilder decided to cut the songs, instead developing the humor and romance into his own blend of bittersweet perversity; this Technicolor-fantasy Paris is kind of a dark cousin to Gigi. Lemmon is in his prime period of hand-wringing self-doubt, and MacLaine is perfectly in tune with his rhythms, especially in scenes that add tenderness to the sometimes queasy mix of moods. Ironically--given the nixing of the songs--the film won its only Oscar for André Previn's adaptation of the stage play's music into a wordless orchestral score. --Robert Horton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Eva25at on Feb. 21 2003
Format: VHS Tape
She's a music student with an interrupted career, the victim of U.S.Airforce, the daughter of a missionary. Sometimes her sister needs a blood transfusion. This is what Irma la Douce (Shirley MacLaine) tells her clients in order to send up the price. She occupies the best spot on her street - near "Les Halles" where it literally smells of fish - and her admirers prefer her charms to those of Amazon Annie, Mimi the Mau Mau and Lolita. She commutes betweent the "Hotel Casanova" (her office) and the bistro "Chez Moustache" (Lou Jacobi) where Hippolyte, her "Mac" is losing her money at the gambling-table.
Nestor Patou (Jack Lemmon), a young cop has saved a little boy from drowning. As a reward he is transferred to Irma's district. He struts along, self-contented, unsuspecting, and buys himself an apple. The fruit-seller looks perplexed at the money in his hand: In this part of the city, as a custom, policemen are not those who pay, but those who get paid...While Nestor saunters about the street, wishing the ladies a good morning, eating his apple, something is beginning to dawn on him. He seeks information from Moustache: What is it, with all those couples who enter this Hotel?
Sadly, Moustache's make-love-not-war-message is lost on Nestor's little-bourgeois mind. He puffs himself up ("fragrant vice...must be stamped out") and decides to make a raid. But first, would Moustache kindly tell him the phone-number of the police-station? In his industry he fails to notice that he is bribed behind his back...The transport of the ladies to the police-station is heavy work - they spray perfume in his eyes and taunt him badly - but crowned by success: "16 females and one poodle. I'll do better next time".
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eva25at on Feb. 21 2003
Format: VHS Tape
"Irma la Douce" was Billy Wilder's biggest hit at the box-office. With its absurdly funny situations and its snappy dialogues it is perhaps the most anarchistic screenplay he and I.A.L Diamond have ever written. The stars were at the height of their artistic powers. Marguerite Monnot's tuneful score didn't hurt, either. And this is just the package. Audiences are always grateful when allowed to peep through key-holes and "Irma la Douce" was the first major Hollywood-production ever to deal with the subject of prostitution. Of course, there have been many women with a past, shady ladies, innocent girls gone astray or clever girls in search of a sugar-daddy. But never before has a leading actress been shown while haggling over the price or describing the strange predilections of her clients.
Wilder originally wanted Charles Laughton for the role of Moustache. Those who have seen him in "Witness for the prosecution" know what he could have done to this film and his co-stars. Wilder's initial choice for Irma was, as everybody knows Marilyn Monroe. Her memories fresh from "Some like it hot", she threw the role away. She would have been wonderful in the role. MacLaine however, is excellent in her own right. Her ultra-cool delivery of her lines make her a provocative foil for Lemmon.
Watching Lemmon's performance, many critics were reminded of the great comedians of the golden age. No wonder. One must be tied up to resist this lovestruck hero. The scene where he enters Irma's room for the very first time, sweetly hesitant, ill at ease, because he knows that in a few minutes he is going to make love to her - this scene alone would secure this film its place among the great romantic comedies.
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Format: DVD
What a remarkable transformation from stage to screen. A Broadway musical made into a straight movie but using all the songs from the Broadway Musical but without the words.This doesn't need to be confusing. Actually it is a delightful movie with two of my favorite actors, Shirley and Jack. Both with exceptional talent from the stage and now adapting this to a non-musical musical romantic comedy. While you hear the background music in this great film you will almost hear the beautiful words being sung with the chemistry that these two actors portray.This comedy duel soon changes to more serious acting as the story progresses and you find yourself just as much in love as they are with each other. Billy Wilder as the director had visions for this story way beyond any director of today. This guy knows how to direct and the challenges that he had in this film in keeping with the story without the singing voices only shows that he is the "Master" of all directors.
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Format: VHS Tape
Whenever Billy Wilder (Director) and Jack Lemmon (Actor) get together be prepared for laughs and a great motion picture. In all of their collaberations watch for authentic locations. "Irma La Douce" is no exception. It is the real Par-ee. Oo-la-la! The scenes are shot in actual locations, outside and inside (not just studio scenery like the others give you).The story is based on an honest, naive man who falls for a "Lady of the Evening" played by Shirley MacLaine. He doesn't want her to "work", but she considers it a profession. What to do? He conjures up a rich customer for her (himself in disguise) to keep her income up and her off the streets. Jack's character, Nestor, gets in deeper and deeper as he tries to finance this proposition. Finally, jealousy (of himself!) takes over. I don't want to spoil the story for you! I can tell you that you will have fun watching this one.
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