The entangled love lives of the actors, thieves, mime artists and aristocrats who frequent Le Boulevard du Crime play out with droll drama. Pierre Brasseur shines as the irrepressible Frédérick Lemaître but every character has time to charm in a film so epic it comes with an interval. The set – the bustling Parisian theatre district – is all the more impressive as it was created under the shortages of war with two Jewish crew members making their contributions from underground.
Like: EastEnders set in 19th century Paris.
Core truth: Love doesn’t conquer a thing…but it makes for good stories.