Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis)
Children of Paradise (Les Enfants du Paradis) (1946)

Even in 1945, Marcel Carnà (C)'s Children of Paradise was regarded as an old-fashioned film. Set in the Parisian theatrical world of the 1840s, Jacques Prà (C)vert's screenplay concerns four men in love with the mysterious Garance… More

Directed By:
Rated: PG
Running Time:
Release Date: November 15, 1946
DVD Release Date: January 22, 2002
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Critic Score: 97% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Strong performances abound, and Carne's wit and grace are evident in this masterful (if long) French epic.

Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

To luxuriate in the film's 3-hour, 10-minute length is to experience this masterpiece as it hasn't been experienced since the day it opened.

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Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out

Before French cinema reinvented itself with jump cuts and cool bobs, Marcel Carné's 19th-century backstage drama was the epitome of good taste: a sumptuous spread of genteel sparring and epic heartache.

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Sean Axmaker

This tragic romance is about the love of art and theater as much as human love. Forget that it is three hours long; every moment bursts with love and passion...

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Rene Rodriguez
Miami Herald

Shot in 1943 during World War II, Children of Paradise overcame so many seemingly impossible obstacles that today the film seems enchanted.

Melissa Anderson
Village Voice

Marcel Carné's towering intimate epic of early 19th-century love and the lives of performers, often heralded as the greatest French film of all time.

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Cole Smithey

Even to call "Les Enfants du Paradis" a mere masterpiece, seems a slight.

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Andrew O'Hehir

If you give this movie time to work on you, the elements that seem overly artificial or impossibly distant from our own time fade into insignificance, and you're left with a complicated and wonderful romantic drama that's full of surprises.

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Richard Brody
New Yorker

Poetry with a capital "P," sprinkled with fairy dust.

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Eric Melin

The movie isn't necessarily realistic-it's about the theater after all-but its unusually cynical center keeps it from becoming so much sentimental mush, while delivering the heartbreak that audiences so crave.

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Flixster Audience Score: 95% Flixster User Reviews
Michael S
It's easy to see why Marcel Carné's "Children of Paradise" is considered by many to be an all-time great of the medium. It's a… More
Luke Baldock
A french masterpiece. Under the circumstances it is amazing such a film was even made. The luxurious set pieces and the beautiful costume design bring this film… More
Stella Dallas
a miracle film made under nazi occupation. a tragic romantic epic of all the mad denizens of the boulevard du crime. wonderful
Cameron Johnson
"When the Lord created us, all his work was through; then the Children of Paradise did the only thing they really shouldn't do!" Yeah,… More
Alexander Wilson
1945 French satire, if you like Moulin Rouge, or La Haine check this one out.
George Matalliotakis
To watch Les Enfants du Paradis is as great an experience as the cinema can provide. It is not so innovative in terms of direction (though it's excellently… More