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Saratoga Trunk (Film)

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  • multiracialbookclub
    Saratoga Trunk (Film) In 1875 a woman with a mysterious past returns from Paris to her familial home in New Orleans, accompanied by her unusual servants, a
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 7, 2007

      Saratoga Trunk (Film)

      In 1875 a woman with a mysterious past
      returns from Paris to her familial home
      in New Orleans, accompanied by her
      unusual servants, a Mulatto maid
      Angelique Buiton (Flora Robson) and
      a manservant Cupidon (Jerry Austin).

      Playing the role of a woman who is both
      half-White and half-Creole-of-Color 
      Ingrid Bergman stars as Clio Dulaine
      in the film Saratoga Trunk (1945).


      Her character, Clio, is a woman made cruel
      by her vendetta against the "pasty-faced
      aristocrats" who cruelly humiliated and
      scorned her mother into an early grave
      after she gave birth to her daughter.

      Clio vows revenge on her dead father's family
      and vows to Angelique that she will marry a
      rich man in order to gain the respectability
      and status that her mother never had.

      Clio makes a splash in New Orleans,
      scandalizing the wealthy residents
      when she takes up with a Texas gambler,
      Colonel Clint Maroon (Gary Cooper),
      who is enthralled and mystified her.

      Determined to not go through what her mother
      encountered, Clio is encouraged by Maroon
      to travel to New York to meet and hopefully
      also marry the wealthy railroad scion of the
      Saratoga Trunk Line, Bartholomew Van
      Steed (John Warburton), though his own
      interest in Clio eventually intervenes.

      Cooper and Bergman, directed by Sam
      Wood, proved such a successful team in
      For Whom the Bell Tolls (1943) that
      Warner Bros. attempted to repeat the
      Paramount formula and hopefully reap
      some of the rewards of a film that had
      garnered ten Oscar nominations.

      Sam Wood and Cooper would go on
      to film Casanova Brown (1944)
      together following Saratoga Trunk,
      though this time without Bergman.

      Ironically enough, Saratoga Trunk did little
      to increase Cooper's star value, though it
      was an enormous success for Bergman.

      Yet, unlike Gary Cooper, who tended
      to always play the same character,
      Bergman often resisted the desire of
      fans to see consistency in a performer.
      She played both good and bad women.

      The film was a modest commercial
      success though casting of Bergman as
      a part-Black woman involved with a
      White man was considered to be rather
      scandalous subject matter for the time,
      at least for Joseph Breen, director of
      the Production Code Administration.

      Though Saratoga Trunk was
      made in 1943, it was not released
      to the general public until 1945.

      Like a number of other productions caught
      up in the gears of the war -- Devotion
      (1946), My Reputation (1946), The
      Two Mrs. Carrolls
      (1947) -- the film
      was shown to members of the armed forces
      but was not released until much later.

      Saratoga Trunk was notable for featuring
      as its second-unit director a young Don
      Siegel who would go on to great success
      with Invasion of the Body Snatchers
      (1956) and Dirty Harry (1971); it showed
      his early genre tendencies by taking charge
      of all of the action scenes in the second
      Saratoga Springs segment of the film.

      Dorothy Dandridge's mother Ruby
      Dandridge also appears briefly in the
      film as a turbaned New Orleans vendor.


      Sam Wood


      Gary Cooper (Colonel Clint Maroon),
      Ingrid Bergman (Clio Dulaine), Flora Robson
      (Angelique Buiton), Jerry Austin (Cupidon),
      John Warburton (Bartholomew Van Steed),
      Florence Bates (Mrs. Coventry Bellop),
      Curt Bois (Augustin Haussy).

      Closed captioning.


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