Johnny Frenchman. Image shows from L to R: Yan Kervarec (Paul Dupuis), Sue Pomeroy (Patricia Roc). Copyright: Ealing Studios
Johnny Frenchman

Johnny Frenchman

  • 1945 film

Comedy drama following a Cornish fishing community and its relationship with its French rivals. Stars Francoise Rosay, Tom Walls, Patricia Roc, Ralph Michael, Paul Dupuis and more.

  • Repeated Monday 13th December at 11:40am on TPTV
Johnny Frenchman. Image shows from L to R: Nat Pomeroy (Tom Walls), Lanec Florrie (Francoise Rosay), Yan Kervarec (Paul Dupuis), Sue Pomeroy (Patricia Roc). Copyright: STUDIOCANAL

Key details

Genre
Film
Released
1945
Stars
Francoise Rosay, Tom Walls, Patricia Roc, Ralph Michael, Paul Dupuis, Frederick Piper, Paul Bonifas, Arthur Hambling and more
Writer
T.E.B. Clarke
Director
Charles Frend
Producers
Michael Balcon and S.C. Balcon
Companies

It is 1939 and the people of Trevannick, a small fishing village on the south coast of Cornwall, are going about their business as normal - when not being disturbed by rivals from Lanec.

A similar village in Brittany on the northern French coast, its fishing fleets regularly enter Cornish waters to poach the English stock, taunt the locals, and occasionally make port whilst refusing to pay their harbour dues: for Trevannick harbourmaster and leading fisherman Nat Pomeroy, the behaviour of the 'froggy' interlopers, led by matriarch 'Lanec' Florrie Kervarec, is particularly rankling.

Rivalry between the Breton and Cornish coastal communities has been rife since time immemorial, but under Florrie and Nat's respective tenures, their obstinacy and big personalities have caused tensions to grow to a head and scuffles are increasingly heated.

The pair are equally aghast, therefore, when the arrival of Florrie's son Yan's boat in Trevannick leads him to catch the eye of Nat's daughter, Sue - and vice versa. A series of unlikely events cause the villages to attempt to put their differences aside, but it is never long before suspicions and hostilities break out once more.

Things begin to change as 1940 arrives. War has come to Europe, Paris falls, and the German army is pushing ever westwards. Florrie and the Lanec locals first help a small group of British servicemen across the channel, and eventually follow themselves, bringing a large group of Lanec children to England and safety.

With the situation on the south side of the Channel growing more desperate, the presence of Yan, Florrie and co raises further questions for Trevannick and its people - and when Yan and Sue decide to marry, opinion is very much split!

Additional details

UK certificate
U
Duration
105 minutes
UK cinematic release
July 1945
Produced
Summer 1944
Distributors

Eagle-Lion Distributors

Production
Location
Camera set-up
Single camera
Picture
Black and white

Website links

Broadcast details

Next repeats
  1. Monday 13th December at 11:40am on TPTV
Most recent repeats
  • Saturday 27th November 2021 at 12:00pm on TPTV
  • Wednesday 8th September 2021 at 3:40pm on TPTV
  • Sunday 5th September 2021 at 3:55pm on TPTV

Recording details

  • Mevagissey - Filmed on location

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