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The Fire Within


The Fire Within


The Fire Within
File:Le Feu follet .jpeg
DVD Cover
Directed by Louis Malle
Written by Pierre Drieu La Rochelle (novel)
Louis Malle
Starring Maurice Ronet
Jeanne Moreau
Alexandra Stewart
Music by Erik Satie
Cinematography Ghislain Cloquet
Editing by Suzanne Baron
Distributed by Gibraltar Productions
Governor Films Inc.
Release date(s)Template:Plainlist
Running time 108 minutes
Country Italy
Language French

The Fire Within (French: Le feu follet [lə fø fɔlɛ], meaning "The Manic Fire" or "Will-o'-the-Wisp") is a 1963 French drama film directed by Louis Malle. It is based on the novel of the same name by Pierre Drieu La Rochelle. The film stars Maurice Ronet as Alain Leroy, a recovering alcoholic at a rehabilitation clinic in Versailles who has depression. He decides to end his life, but first decides to visit his friends in Paris one last time, in an attempt at finding a reason to continue living. The movie also stars Jeanne Moreau—who had previously worked with Ronet and Malle in Elevator to the Gallows—as well as Alexandra Stewart, Bernard Noel, Lena Skerla, Hubert Deschamps and Yvonne Clech. The score features the music of Erik Satie.


  • Maurice Ronet as Alain Leroy
  • Léna Skerla as Lydia
  • Yvonne Clech as Mademoiselle Farnoux
  • Hubert Deschamps as D'Averseau
  • Jean-Paul Moulinot as Dr. La Barbinais
  • Mona Dol as Madame La Barbinais
  • Pierre Moncorbier as Moraine
  • René Dupuy as Charlie (as René Dupuis)
  • Bernard Tiphaine as Milou
  • Bernard Noël as Dubourg
  • Ursula Kubler as Fanny
  • Jeanne Moreau as Eva
  • Alexandra Stewart as Solange


The film was selected as the French entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 36th Academy Awards, but was not accepted as a nominee.[1] In his 2006 Movie Guide, Leonard Maltin gives the film 3.5 stars (out of four) and calls it "probably Malle's best early film."[2] Roger Ebert wrote that the film was a "triumph of style." [3]

See also


External links

  • Internet Movie Database
  • Rotten Tomatoes
  • AllRovi
  • The Fire Within, review at
Preceded by
Vivre sa vie
Special Jury Prize, Venice
tied with Vstuplijenije
Succeeded by
The Gospel According to St. Matthew
tied with Hamlet
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