Oscar: Foreign Language Film–Monsieur Vincent by Maurice Clochet

Maurice Cloche’s French drama, “Monsieur Vincent,” won the 1948 Best Foreign Language Oscar, an award voted by the board of directors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science (AMPAS), before a legit, competitive award in that category was established in 1956.
It was the second foreign-language winner, preceded by Vittorio De Sica’s “Shoehine,” and followed by (again) De Sica’s “The Bicycle Thief.”
In this biopic, set in the seventeenth century, the great Gallic actor Pierre Fresnay plays Vincent de Paul, the man who devoted his life to helping the poor and needy, for which he was canonized by the church. Monsieur Vincent is considered to be the founder of social work and social services.
Sharply written by Jean Anouilh, better known as a playwright, and beautifully shot by Claude Renor, the film is solemn and spiritual but not pompous or pretentious.