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Film / Le Gendarme et les extra-terrestres

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Le Gendarme et les extra-terrestres (The Gendarme and the Extra-Terrestrials) is a 1979 French Science Fiction comedy film starring Louis de Fun├Ęs and Michel Galabru, and the fifth installment of the Gendarme de Saint-Tropez series.

Cruchot has discovered that aliens have arrived in the town in a Flying Saucer. The aliens (which are made of metal) can duplicate the forms of humans and have telekinetic powers. They promptly impersonate the policemen, which soon creates confusion.

Le Gendarme et les extra-terrestres provides examples of:

  • The '70s: This is a 1979 film. SF was trendy after the success of Star Wars.
  • Accidental Pervert: Cruchot jumps on the back of a young American tourist in bikini, because he thinks she is an alien and he wants to handcuff her. Both Josépha and the tourist's husband catch him in this awkward position.
  • The Alcoholic: The American tourist who hides alcohol in her suntan oil bottle.
  • Alien Among Us: The aliens disguise as humans, typically impersonating existing persons.
  • Alien Episode: This film is about an Alien Invasion. The other films of the series do not feature aliens.
  • Alien Invasion: Infiltration type. The aliens can impersonate whoever they want.
  • Da Chief: The Colonel (Jacques François).
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Fougasse (Jean Lefebvre) and Merlot are not there anymore without any explanation (early retirement perhaps).
  • Coming in Hot: The gendarmes perform an emergency water landing with the flying saucer in the end, after nearly crashing into Saint-Tropez and disrupting the parade.
  • Contrived Coincidence: The flying saucer keeps on landing in the exact same place and the gendarmes are always there when it does.
  • Disguised in Drag: Cruchot disguises himself as a nun to avoid being caught by Gerber (the whole brigade thinks he is crazy and wants to keep him locked).
  • Drives Like Crazy:
    • Josépha in the opening sequence. Even a police roadblock cannot stop her.
    • Sister Clotilde (France Rumilly), who is now Mother Superior, is back.
  • Easily Thwarted Alien Invasion: The aliens quickly rust when exposed to water, being made of metal. The brigade simply assaults them with backpack water sprayers.
  • "Eureka!" Moment: Cruchot is the one coming up with the idea on how to defeat the titular "Extra-terrestrials'':
    Gerber: And then?
    Cruchot: THEY RUST! WE GOT THEM!
    Gerber: But how do we spot them among the population?
    Cruchot: The shower!
  • Exploding Fish Tanks: When the gendarmes corner two of the aliens in a fish restaurant, Cruchot grabs a hunting shotgun and one of the aliens uses his Eye Beams to bend the cannon upwards just as Cruchot fires it, which destroys one of the restaurant's fish tanks and completely soaks the other alien, who rusts as a result, exposing the aliens' Weaksauce Weakness.
  • Fanservice: The beach scene, with the aliens impersonating three young women in blue bikini and the American tourist.
  • Fantastic Diet Requirement: The aliens have to drink oil to survive.
  • Flying Saucer: The aliens fly one and the gendarmes make a copy of it.
  • Genre Shift: The previous films were comedies set in a fairly normal universe. This one goes fully Science Fiction, with an Alien Invasion and what comes with it.
  • Humanshifting: The aliens can impersonate whoever they want.
  • In a Single Bound: The three aliens in bikini can jump very high.
  • Kill It with Water: The aliens rust and soon die if they are sprayed with water, and if they don't regularly drink oil.
  • Mechanical Lifeforms: The aliens are made of metal and they rust.
  • Mistaken for an Imposter: Because of the aliens' ability to take human form, it happens countless times.
    • Cruchot thinks Gerber is an alien. He makes him drink oil and then he stabs him in the buttocks.
    • Cruchot then thinks that the colonel is an alien. He stabs him in the buttocks.
    • Cruchot later thinks an American tourist is an alien. So he jumps on her back to handcuff her.
  • Mundane Solution: Backpack water sprayers to kill nigh invincible metal aliens.
  • Nuns Are Funny: There is a whole sequence in the convent with Cruchot disguised as a nun for extra fun.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Cruchot dons a nun habit, he hides his face behind his hand and he pulls faces and this is enough to be unrecognisable by Gerber.
  • Properly Paranoid: Knowing the aliens are made of metal, Cruchot tries to sting random people in order to bust them — but everyone think he is just crazy.
  • Punk in the Trunk: Two gendarmes are trapped in Josépha's trunk in the opening sequence.
  • Say Your Prayers: When the gendarmes are in the Flying Saucer at the end, it spins out of control, and when it sets on a crash course, they sing an "Ave Maria".
  • Shout-Out:
    • Beaupied and later Cruchot recite a personal version of The Fox and the Crow by Jean de La Fontaine. Of course this is to flatter their superior.
    • Tricard, Berlicot and Taupin recite Les Bijoux by poet Charles Baudelaire after kissing the aliens.
  • Shrug Take: When the gendarmes notice that their cranium makes a metallic sound when they knock on it.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Beaupied (Maurice Risch) and Taupin (Jean-Pierre Rambal) replace Fougasse (Jean Lefebvre) and Merlot (Christian Marin).
  • Yes-Man: Beaupied towards Cruchot and Cruchot towards Gerber. They both recite the same poetry for their superior.
  • Zeerust: The flying saucers, the watches of the aliens...