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Film / Hibernatus

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Hibernatus is a 1969 French comedy film. It was directed by Édouard Molinaro and it stars Louis de Funès, Claude Gensac and Michel Lonsdale.

A polar expedition discovers a human body in the ice. It turns out that it is possible to bring him back to life. He is identified as Paul Fournier, the grandfather of Edmée de Tartas (Gensac) who disappeared 65 years ago. The doctors who treat him think that they cannot tell him the truth, because this would be a great shock for him, so they tell him that he has woken up in 1905.


Hibernatus provides examples of:

  • Arranged Marriage: Hubert Barrère de Tartas plans to marry his son Didier with Évelyne Crépin-Jaujard, the daughter of another industrialist, so that his company can be merged with another. Didier is not interested. He is in love with the maid.
  • Bedroom Adultery Scene: Hubert Barrère de Tartas pretends to be Edmée's fiancé, so he cannot sleep with her. Still, he does it. The next morning, Paul Fournier enters Edmée's bedroom and Hubert has to hide under the bed.
  • Butt-Monkey: Hubert Barrère de Tartas. First, his wife forces him to free Paul Fournier. Then, he is forced to receive Paul in his house, which is transformed to look like a 1905 house. When Paul wakes up, Hubert pretends to be his father and Paul throws him out of the house. Then he has to pretend to be Edmée's fiancé, which means he can only secretly sleep with his wife.
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  • Chase Scene: When Pr Bibolini, Hubert and Edmée Barrère de Tartas escape in an ambulance with Paul Fournier, they are chased by the police and Pr Loriebat.
  • Closet Shuffle: Hubert has to hide under the bed when Paul Fournier enters Edmée's bedroom.
  • Faux Horrific: Edmée and Hubert Barrère de Tartas are terrified when they see Paul Fournier with a large beard in the hospital.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Paul Fournier was frozen in 1905. He is woken up in 1970.
  • French Maid: Sophie, the maid, flirts with Didier. She is also cheeky with Hubert Barrère de Tartas.
  • Happily Ever After: The film ends with the marriage of Paul Fournier and Évelyne Crépin-Jaujard.
  • Harmless Freezing: Paul Fournier was accidentally frozen in 1905. After he is thawed out, he is alive and well.
  • Here We Go Again!: The story starts with the discovery of a frozen human body. The story ends with Hubert Barrère de Tartas deciding to be frozen.
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  • Human Popsicle: Paul Fournier was frozen in 1905. He is woken up in 1970.
  • Identical Grandson: Edmée de Tartas looks the same as her great-grandmother, because Paul Fournier takes the former for the latter.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Hubert Barrère de Tartas asks twice for a large Grenache and a large Madeira in a large glass.
  • Instant Sedation: On the plane, Pr Bibolini tampers his colleague's drink with a drug, so that Pr Loriebat falls immediately asleep.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Paul Fournier has forgotten exactly what is needed for the plot: he has forgotten that he was married, that he had a son and that he went to the North Pole.
  • Lysistrata Gambit: Edmée refuses to sleep with her husband Hubert as long as his grandfather has to stay in the hospital.
  • Media Scrum: When Pr Loriebat is in a horse-drawn carriage, many journalists aks him questions.
  • Mighty Whitey and Mellow Yellow: The lawyer has two Asian mistresses who are very submissive: they undress him and offer him drinks and food when he is on the phone.
  • Nobility Marries Money: Hubert Barrère de Tartas, a poor nobleman, is married to Edmée Fournier, a rich commoner who owns a factory. Even if Hubert manages to factory, her wife owns it and she signs all the important documents.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: Hubert Barrère de Tartas would like to know when he will receive the Legion of Honour, so he asks one of his guests. The guest thinks he is talking about his own Legion of Honour, so he answers that it is done, because he has received it last week.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Hubert Barrère de Tartas dons a fake beard to impersonate Paul Fournier's father. A bit later, he dons a fake moustache to impersonate Edmée's fiancé. Paul Fournier does not notice he is the same person.
  • Practical Voice-Over: The prologue, which is used to give information about the discovery of the frozen man, is revealed to be a television programme watched by Hubert Barrère de Tartas and his family.
  • Seeking Sanctuary: When they are chased by the police, Pr Bibolini, Hubert and Edmée Barrère de Tartas seek refuge in an abbey. The police does not dare to enter, so Pr Loriebat enters alone.
  • Road Block: The police sets up road blocks to catch Pr Bibolini, Hubert and Edmée Barrère de Tartas when they kidnap Paul Fournier.
  • Sexual Euphemism: Hubert's lawyer tells on the phone that he has to study two cases, while he is in his bed with two Asian women.
  • Swing Low, Sweet Harriet: When he pretends to court Edmée, Hubert Barrère de Tartas puts her on a swing.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Paul Fournier thinks that he has woken up in 1905, that Edmée is her mother, that Didier is a student... In short, he thinks that he has resumed his normal life. In the end, Hubert reveals to him that he has woken up in 1970 and that everyone lied to him to make him believe that he is still in 1905. He does not believe Hubert at first, but then he finds a TV set.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Hubert (De Funès) and Edmée Barrère de Tartas (Gensac).


Example of: