Ball of tallow (movie, 1945)

Ball de Suif is a French film directed by Christian-Jaque , released in 1945 .


Two episodes of the Prussian occupation in 1870. The film is an adaptation of two short stories by Guy de Maupassant : Boule de Suif and Mademoiselle Fifi . During the diligent journey of a frightened group of inhabitants of Rouen, Élisabeth Rousset, known as “ball of tallow”, gives to these people a signal service, but runs up against their foolishness and their sufficiency. Later, Boule de tallow kills the dreaded Prussian lieutenant that his friends had nicknamed Fifi and spread shamelessly looting his taste and inclinations sadistic one .


Ball of tallow is a very patriotic film, made at the Liberation of France and which is far from being detached from the context.

Technical sheet

  • Title: Tallow Ball
  • Director: Christian-Jaque
  • Scenario: according to two news from Maupassant : Boule de Suif and Mademoiselle Fifi
  • Adaptation: Christian-Jaque, Henry Jeanson , Louis d’Hée 2
  • Dialogues: Henri Jeanson
  • Sets: Léon Barsacq
  • Costumes: Rosine Delamare
  • Photography: Christian Matras
  • Photographer: Lucienne Chevert
  • Sound: William-Robert Sivel
  • Editing: Jacques Desagneaux
  • Music: Marius-Paul Guillot
  • Production: Georges Lévi
  • Production company: Artès-Films
  • Country of origin: France
  • Size: Black and white – 35 mm – 1.37: 1
  • Genre: Drama
  • Duration: 103 minutes
  • Release date :
    • France ,


  • Micheline Presle : Élisabeth Rousset, called “Ball of tallow”
  • Louis Salou : the Prussian lieutenant “Fifi”
  • Berthe Bovy : Ms. Bonnet
  • Alfred Adam : Cornudet
  • Jean Brochard : Auguste Loiseau
  • Suzet Corn : Mrs. Loiseau
  • Marcel Simon : Count Hubert de Bréville
  • Louise Conte : the Countess of Bréville
  • Pierre Palau : Edmond Carré-Lamadon
  • Janine Viénot : Ms. Carré-Lamadon
  • Jean Sinoël : Mr. Follenvie, the innkeeper
  • Gabrielle Fontan : Ms. Follenvie
  • Berthe Tissen : the maverick girl
  • Mona Dol : the sister
  • Roger Karl : Major-Colonel
  • Jim Gérald : Captain Von Kerfenstein
  • Michel Salina: the musician
  • Denis d’Inès : the priest of Uville
  • Georges Tourreil : the chief of the francs-tireurs
  • Marcel Mouloudji : a maverick
  • Pierre Duncan : a maverick
  • Nicolas Bataille : a maverick
  • Albert Malbert : the coachman
  • Paul Faivre : Poitevin
  • Robert Dalban : Oskar
  • Howard Vernon : a Prussian
  • Marcel Rouzé : the servant of M. Poitevin
  • Jean Werner : a Prussian

Around the film

Anecdote told by Micheline Presle: “Louis Salou (who interprets the Prussian lieutenant) was a very fine man and very sensitive.He was to administer a double slap and he was sick.I begged him to hit hard.It was necessary to start again the scene, countless times, because he could not be violent, and when he did, he was livid with grief, and I snapped at him in the face and prepared a bowl of beaten egg Every time the jet of egg whites (thrown out of the field with a blowtorch) reached his face, he was shaken.The scene ended, Salou had big tears dripping on his cheeks, and very slowly, his voice broken, he repeated: “it is terrible tobe humiliated by a woman 3. ”


  1. ↑ Preview: Prussian lieutenant  [ archive ]
  2. ↑ (in) Louis Hée  [ archive ] on the Internet Movie Database
  3. ↑ Télé 7 jours No. 716 of January 12, 1974, pages 40 and 41, Article Jacqueline Fabre.

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