Boom, Flanders, has a local army of four. When word arrives that the Spanish army will be passing through, the quickly scarper, and the Mayor plays dead. It's down to the Mayor's wife, having rallied and convinced the townswomen to 'warmly welcome' the army, thereby preventing bloodshed.
Though it deals with a Flemish village coping with Spanish military occupation in 1616, this is a very French film.
Artistically inclined in its visual lifts from Dutch painters, its essentially farcical in plot (the smug men of the town panic, while their womenfolk greet the invaders with charm and win them over), with big personalities and a great deal of tasteful sauciness - and remaining a great example of female empowerment in cinema to boot.
The best-remembered film of director Jacques Feyder, it suffers a little from 'quality' stuffiness but has good jokes and a general air of gaity to recommend it.
A good, (very) old fashioned bawdy comedy that makes you wonder how the Carry On crew passed it over for a remake.