Les Naugragés du Fol Espoir

Collection Theatre du Soleil 

A film directed by Ariane Mnouchkine

After a collective creation by the Théâtre du Soleil

Written by Ariane Mnouchkine and Hélène Cixous
Music by Jean-Jacques Lemêtre
Inspired by a mysterious posthumous novel by Jules Verne

BAC100 /

The new film by Ariane Mnouchkine and the Théâtre du Soleil in an exceptional 3 DVD box set. A 3 hours film and 4h30 of bonus.


Reading a Jules Verne’s posthumous novel was the trigger for creating our film.

A film-crew in the early twentieth century, the cabaret known as ‘Le Fol Espoir’ has been transformed into an amateur soundstage. The motion picture tells the story of a ship and its passengers – from the famous opera singer down to the petty criminal. The film is an optimistic political fable intended to educate the masses. There’s comedy aplenty – slapstick punches, custard pies and gags reminiscent of Buster Keaton and Fatty Arbuckle; there’s adventure, high drama moments of great bravura , and passionate love stories.

The filming begins on June 28th 1914, the day of the Archiduke Franz Ferdinand’s assassination in Sarajevo, the gunpowder that sets Europe alight. It ends with news of another assassination – that of Jean Jaures on July 31st followed by the general conscription of August 1st, heralded by church bells across France. The allegory of the shipwreck is filmed at breakneck pace during the last five weeks before war breaks out.


“Ariane Mnouchkine also uses film-making as a metaphor for the theatrical process and pointedly asks whether democratic collectivity is compatible with a strong artistic vision”. THE GUARDIAN, 25/08/2012

“Like a great Wagnerian conductor she [Ariane Mnouchkine] holds the entire arc of the evening in her hand, knowing where she is going to end from the very first moment […] Just genius”. THE TIMES, 27/08/2012

  • Director: Ariane Mnouchkine
  • Bonus: Interviews and Making of (4h30)
  • Length: 7h30 - Image: Color, 16/9, NTSC
  • Audio: PCM Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1
  • Subtitles: EN, DE, ES
  • Zones: - 3 disc(s) - Release date: