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Diary of a Country Priest (1951)

Journal d'un curé de campagne (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 5 April 1954 (USA)
A young priest taking over the parish at Ambricourt tries to fulfill his duties even as he fights a mysterious stomach ailment.

Director:

Robert Bresson

Writers:

Georges Bernanos (novel), Robert Bresson (scenario)
Reviews
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 7 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Claude Laydu ... Priest of Ambricourt (Curé d'Ambricourt)
Jean Riveyre Jean Riveyre ... Count (Le Comte)
Adrien Borel Adrien Borel ... Priest of Torcy (Curé de Torcy) (as Andre Guibert)
Rachel Bérendt Rachel Bérendt ... Countess (La Comtesse) (as Marie-Monique Arkell)
Nicole Maurey ... Miss Louise
Nicole Ladmiral Nicole Ladmiral ... Chantal
Martine Lemaire Martine Lemaire ... Séraphita Dumontel
Antoine Balpêtré ... Dr. Delbende (Docteur Delbende) (as Balpetre)
Jean Danet Jean Danet ... Olivier
Gaston Séverin Gaston Séverin ... Canon (Le Chanoine) (as Gaston Severin)
Yvette Etiévant ... Femme de ménage
Bernard Hubrenne Bernard Hubrenne ... Priest Dufrety
Léon Arvel Léon Arvel ... Fabregars
Martial Morange Martial Morange ... Deputy mayor (L'Adjoint)
Gilberte Terbois Gilberte Terbois ... Mrs. Dumouchel (Mme Dumouchel)
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Storyline

In Ambricourt, an idealistic young Priest (Claude Laydu) arrives to be the local parish priest. He attempts to live a Christ-like life, but his actions are misunderstood. The community of the small town does not accept him, and although having a serious disease in the stomach, the inexperienced and frail priest tries to help the dwellers, and has a situation with the wealthy family of the location. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to the DVD's commentary, Claude Laydu felt repelled by Robert Bresson's directing methods. He claimed Bresson "would work on an actor, like a sculptor models his clay". The commentary says: "Bresson worked with Laydu every Sunday for a year, persuading him gradually into the role. He lived for many weeks with a group of young priests, absorbing their mannerisms and gestures, and during shooting he starved himself so as to acquire the authentic mask of undernourishment and illness." See more »

Quotes

Curé d'Ambricourt: I was so disappointed I had to lean against the wall.
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Connections

Referenced in Taxi Driver (1976) See more »

User Reviews

 
The kind of integrity and faith so strong and real, it frightens even the church
23 September 2006 | by Asa_Nisi_Masa2See all my reviews

A young priest has been assigned his first parish in a village somewhere in the North of France. Right from the first, essential opening shot in beautiful black and white, we instinctively get a sense of his isolation from any other human being. As the final credits rolled by, I don't know why I had the impulse to restart the DVD, and I watched the first 5 minutes of the movie again, realising just how much of a harbinger of extreme loneliness the opening frames are. Diary of a Country Priest is in good part about loneliness - the extreme physical, emotional and intellectual isolation of those who embark on an earnest mission, with an inability to compromise and a sincerity (with its resulting emotional vulnerability) which both frightens and repulses those who aren't ready to receive it. I was especially thankful to Bresson for having left us with a film about a priest which didn't involve his tiresome sexual issues in any shape or form - what a refreshing change! In the role of the young parish priest of Ambricourt, young Claude Laydu was in his debut role here - though he very occasionally shows his inexperience as an actor, he is nonetheless remarkable in the title role, and his sensitive, silently suffering, candid boyish face will remain with me for quite a while. It's extraordinary that such a movie, so completely devoid of any mass appeal or commercial potential, should have found someone willing to fund it. This kind of thing restores one's faith in the integrity and vision of certain cinematic enterprises.


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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

5 April 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Diary of a Country Priest See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,674, 27 February 2011

Gross USA:

$47,000

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$47,000
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Tobis-Klangfilm)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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