The Adventures of Arsène Lupin
(Les aventures d'Arsène Lupin)
With Robert Lamoureux, Liselotte Pulver, O.E. Hasse .
France/Italy, 1957, DCP, color, 104 min.
French, English, German, Italian with English subtitles.
DCP source: Rialto Pictures
Becker’s witty, stylish and sumptuously detailed adaptation of Maurice Leblanc’s popular exploits of master thief and deceiver Arsène Lupin is a revealing and little known gem in the director’s oeuvre. The film weaves together several adventures closely following Lupin as he dons different guises in order to artfully rob the wealthy and powerful across whose polished floors he steals and dances with incomparable ease. Theater actor Robert Lamoureux brings out the amorous and vulnerable side of Lupin’s elusive Robin Hood, leaving him open to the wiles of the elegant German aristocrat Mina von Kraft, who pulls him into a dangerous mission for none other than the Kaiser Wilhelm II. While set in a lighter tone than his better known titles (and the second of only two color films directed by Becker), The Adventures of Arsène Lupin also extends the critique of class stratification that weaves across such diverse works as Casque d’or and Édouard and Caroline.