Partie de campagne (pronounced:Â [paÊ.ti dÉ kÉ'Ì.paÉ²]) is a 1936 French featurette written and directed by Jean Renoir. It is released as A Day in the Country in the United States. The film is based on a short story by Guy de Maupassant, who was a friend of Renoir's father, the renowned painter Auguste Renoir. It chronicles a love affair over a single summer afternoon in 1860, along the banks of the Seine.
Renoir never finished filming due to weather problems, but producer Pierre Braunberger turned the material into a release in 1946, ten years after it was shot. Joseph Burstyn released the film in the U.S. in 1950.
Monsieur Dufour (AndrÃ© Gabriello), a shop-owner from Paris, takes his family for a day of relaxation in the country. When they stop for lunch at the roadside restaurant of Poulain (Jean Renoir), two young men there, Henri (Georges D'Arnoux) and Rodolphe (Jacques B. Brunius), take an interest in Dufour's daughter Henriette (Sylvia Bataille) and wife Madame Dufour (Jane Marken). They scheme to get the two women off alone with them. They offer to row them along the river in their skiffs, while they divert Dufour and his shop assistant and future son-in-law, Anatole (Paul Temps), by lending them some fishing poles. Though Rodolphe had arranged beforehand to take Henriette, Henri maneuvers it so that she gets into his skiff. Rodolphe then good-naturedly settles for Madame Dufour.
Henri rows to a secluded spot on the riverbank which he refers to as his "private office". Though Henriette initially rebuffs his amorous advances, she eventually gives in. He asks her to come see him again, but she says that her father would never permit her to venture into the countryside by herself.
Years pass, and Henriette marries Anatole. One day, they end up at the place where Henri seduced Henriette. While Anatole dozes, his wife takes a walk, and encounters Henri. With tears in her eyes, she reminisces about their brief time together. Then, when Anatole wakes up, Henri hides until they leave.
- Sylvia Bataille as Henriette
- Georges D'Arnoux as Henri
- Jane Marken as Madame Dufour
- AndrÃ© Gabriello as Monsieur Dufour
- Jacques B. Brunius as Rodolphe
- Paul Temps as Anatole
- Gabrielle Fontan as Grandmother
- Jean Renoir as Uncle Poulain
- Marguerite Renoir as Waitress
Future leading directors Jacques Becker and Luchino Visconti worked as Renoir's assistant directors. A Day in the Country was shot in July, soon after France had elected the Popular Front government, and employers had negotiated the Matignon agreement, providing wage increases, 40-hour weeks, trade union rights, paid holidays and improved social services.
- A Day in the Country at the Internet Movie Database
- A Day in the Country at The Film Journal