"The film for which I have built a village". This is how Marcel Pagnol introduced "REGAIN" ("HARVEST") the day it was released on October 2nd, 1937. Adapted from the novel by Jean Giono, this film is the most challenging and the closest to the writer's world. Pagnol engaged in spadework and clarification work. With a reduced number of characters and less extensive dialogues than usual, the landscape towers above drama, emphasized by Honegger's symphony.
Aubignane village, built for the film on a rocky spur of Eoures massif, served as a setting for the shoot. During a harsh winter, Pagnol lived down below the massif with his team, in "ANGELE"'s old house.
Games of belote had replaced bowls games and people would hear Pagnol speak. Fernandel recounts: "Shooting with Marcel is to no longer know where to find a borderline between work and pleasure... He has a sense of dialogue even in real life and, when the day comes to an end, you no longer really distinguish the cues that have been recorded from those he has created to enrich our moments of rest."
Producer: Les Films Marcel Pagnol.
Script and dialogues: Marcel Pagnol, after the novel by Jean Giono.
Direction: Marcel Pagnol.
Visuals: Willy Faktorovitch.
Set: Marius Brouquier.
Editing: Suzanne de Troye, Jeannette Ginestet.
Music: Arthur Honegger.
Location: Saint Esprit hills.
Studios: Marcel Pagnol - Marseille.
First public screening: Paris, October 1937.
Running time: 2h01.
Orane Demazis - Arsule Fernandel - Gédémus, le rémouleur Gabriel Gabrio - Panturle Margueritte Moreno - La Mamèche Robert Le Vigan - Le brigadier Edouard Delmont - Le père Gaubert Charles Blavette - Son fils Milly Mathis - Sa bru Henri Poupon - L'Amoureux Odette Roger - Sa femme
In a deserted village, Panturle is the only remaining inhabitant. All around this place, the dead soil no longer produces anything. A grinder, Gédémus, arrives in the village along with a young woman, Arsule, whom he employs to draw his cart. Love grows between Panturle and Arsule and eventually transforms the fate of the old village.