Rent The Flame of New Orleans (1941)

3.3 of 5 from 62 ratings
1h 16min
Rent The Flame of New Orleans Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
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In the mid 18th century, a wedding gown is found floating down the Mississippi River. Only three people know the secret of its damp origin, and the ripples of love lost and love found, rising and receding in its wake. The impoverished Countess Claire Ledoux (Marlene Dietrich) arrived in New Orleans with one thing on her mind -to marry a man of means. And with her engagement to gentleman Charles Giraud (Roland Young), it appeared to be smooth seas ahead...until Captain Robert Latour (Bruce Cabot) stormed into town, took the wind out of her sails and replaced it with a flutter in her heart.
Though it would take fainting spells and double identities to delay and disguise the truth, the Countess would discover that the greatest treasure of all - a heart of gold - is worth more than a pot of it.
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René Clair, Joe Pasternak
Narrated By:
Robert Paige
Norman Krasna, René Clair
Russell A. Gausman, Jack Otterson, Martin Obzina
Universal Pictures
Action & Adventure, Classics, Comedy, Drama, Music & Musicals, Romance
A Brief History of the Tradition of Quality
Release Date:
Run Time:
76 minutes
English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
Czech, Danish, Dutch, English Hard of Hearing, Finnish, French, German, Hungarian, Norwegian, Polish, Swedish
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
B & W
Release Date:
Run Time:
79 minutes
English LPCM Mono
English Hard of Hearing
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.37:1
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
  • 'The Flame of New Orleans' feature commentary by film historian Lee Gambin and actor and film historian Rutanya Alda
  • Music and effects tracks for 'The Flame of New Orleans'
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Reviews (2) of The Flame of New Orleans

Flickering or guttering. - The Flame of New Orleans review by NW

Spoiler Alert

A “comedy”, and crass. Script clunkingly unimaginative; dialogue wooden, characters cut from worn out cardboard. This film demeans both Fraulein Dietrich and M. Clair, each of whom was capable of better things - but where else could they go in 1941but Hollywood? Marlene Dietrich’s skill and power as an actress – see, for example, “Dishonoured” – were too often under valued. Should one blame the producers and their expectations rather than anything else? In Hollywood, of course, offer them an actress and all they really wanted was a doll – it did not matter whether it was called Marlene or Marilyn! I fear I am parading my personal prejudices, but this film did upset me, with its vulgarly glittering attempts to show a social scene and subordinate – if well played – coloured characters. (Theresa Harris, for example, was obviously capable of much more.) By contrast, as the leading man, I found Robert Cabot rebarbative … but blame the script, perhaps, rather than him for the brash vulgarity of his part. Crass; vulgar; I found it hard to see through to the end. (Good enough camera work …) Blank stars only.

(But apparently a mimnimum of one is compulsory!)

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Pass the Port - The Flame of New Orleans review by CH

Spoiler Alert

The double is a familiar form in films – and Marlene Dietrich was given to guises several times in her work. Those shall not be revealed here but it gives away little of The Flame of New Orleans (1941) to say that this features another one. How well known is the film now? Written by the ever-adroit Norman Krasna, one of those who mysteriously attract the word professional as a near-insult, it is a diverting entertainment with many of those touches that distinguished René Clair (here in wartime exile).

In the middle of the nineteenth century Marlene Dietrich has arrived in town (with her wise maid Theresa Harris), and sings less than one could wish. She is a woman of mystery, necessarily so. She has plied her wooing ways elsewhere, and here is duly rewarded with a necklace by stolid banker Roland Young. Money can't buy him love, though, especially when Marlene hankers for impecunious Bruce Cabot, a man as rugged as the vessel he captains.

For which of these men will it be a case of the gal that got away?

Around this scenario are turned many scenes which culminate in a bravura barroom scene which contrasts with many high-born interiors (if so young a place really has old money). However small a part, each member of the cast plays it to the full (such as the matronly figures who tacitly inform Marlene about the rigours of the bedroom, to which she gives an eyebrow and twinkle unrivalled in film history).

Here is abundant fun.

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