7.8/10
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43 user 47 critic

Pépé le Moko (1937)

Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Romance | 3 March 1941 (USA)
A wanted gangster is both king and prisoner of the Casbah. He is protected from arrest by his friends, but is torn by his desire for freedom outside. A visiting Parisian beauty may just tempt his fate.

Director:

Writers:

(novel) (as Ashelbé), (scenario) (as Détective Julien Ashelbé) | 3 more credits »

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2 wins. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Gabriel Gabrio ...
...
Le Grand Père
...
Régis (as Charpin)
...
...
Pierrot (as Gilbert-Gil)
...
L'Arbi (as Dalio)
...
Maxime (as Granval)
...
Jimmy
René Bergeron ...
Meunier (as Bergeron)
Paul Escoffier ...
Louvain (as Escoffier)
...
Max (as Legris)
Jean Témerson ...
Gravère (as Temerson)
Robert Ozanne ...
Gendron
Philippe Richard ...
Janvier
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Storyline

Pépé le Moko is a gangster from Paris that hides in Algier's Casbah. In the Casbah, he is safe and is able to elude the police's attempts to capture him. But he misses his freedom, after two years in the Casbah. He meets a gorgeous Parisian tourist, Gaby, and they fall in love. Native inspector Slimane tries to use her to attract Pépé out of the Casbah in order to catch him. Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The World's New Triumph!

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

3 March 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tajanstveni Alžir  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$14,100 (USA) (1 March 2002)

Gross:

$153,936 (USA) (18 October 2002)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(R.C.A. Photophone)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to a BBC documentary, it served as inspiration for Graham Greene's acclaimed novel, The Third Man. See more »

Goofs

In a scene after Pierrot's death, Pepe is getting progressively drunker and his suit coat opens to reveal more of his shirt. His shirt has the monogram of "JG" on the pocket; clearly the monogram of the actor (Jean Gabin) and not the character. See more »

Quotes

Pépé le Moko: Blame it on the Casbah.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Hollywood Mouth 2 (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

Before there was Bogart...
12 June 2003 | by (Princeton, Kentucky) – See all my reviews

In the greatest gangster film of all time, Duvivier brings to the silver screen a gripping tale of love, passion, friendship and loyalty, as Pépé le Moko (Jean Gabin) reclusively hides in the seedy, underground of the Casbah quarters of Algiers. Elusive and dangerous, Pépé is considered one of France's most wanted at-large criminals. However, upon meeting a beautiful "parisienne", Gaby Gould (Mireille Balin), Pépé discovers that his heart is in Paris. Willing to risk his life and freedom to pursue his new love, Pépé takes to the streets of Algiers to find Gaby.

An enlightening look at French Algeria in the early 20th-century, Pépé le Moko is a cultural and historical masterpiece as much as it is a classic film. Examining the diversity of the inhabitants of the Casbah and exploring its architectural layout, this film provides for an extremely interesting postcolonial, anthropological, even Freudian (architectural) reading.

The friendship that develops between Inspector Slimane (Lucas Gridoux), a native Algerian investigator sent to capture the fugitive, and Pépé adds an element of perplexity, as the inspector is caught in a crux of friendship and loyalty and his duty to the state.

What ensues is a heartwrenching scene between the disconsolate gangster pursuing his beloved Gaby while being pursued by his inspector friend and the French Algerian police. One of the greatest endings in the history of film, Duvivier exposes the sovereignty of the heart, even the heart of a brazen criminal.

Duvivier's best effort and the greatest gangster film ever, this film ranks in my top ten of all-time. To truly understand Humphrey Bogart, Edward Robinson, Robert Mitchum and Al Pacino, one must first discover Jean Gabin, the archetype gangster for the crime genre. Duvivier's masterpiece is a film that all lovers of cinema simply must see.


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