After five years in prison, Tony le Stéphanois meets his dearest friends Jo and the Italian Mario Ferrati and they invite Tony to steal a couple of jewels from the show-window of the famous jewelry Mappin & Webb Ltd, but he declines. Tony finds his former girlfriend Mado, who became the lover of the gangster owner of the night-club L' Âge d' Or Louis Grutter, and he humiliates her, beating on her back for being unfaithful. Then he calls Jo and Mario and proposes a burglary of the safe of the jewelry. They invite the Italian specialist in safes and elegant wolf Cesar to join their team and they plot a perfect heist. They are successful in their plan, but the Don Juan Cesar makes things go wrong when he gives a valuable ring to his mistress. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Breathtakingly brilliant! Still one of the greatest crime movies ever made.
'Rififi' is so damn good it takes your breath away! Director Jules Dassin, blacklisted from Hollywood, was living almost hand to mouth in Europe and taking any job he could get, when he made this movie, a project he was initially not at all excited by. Happily he turned around an awful situation and ended up making a classic thriller which is still one of the greatest crime movies ever made. One of the most influential too, having an impact on movies like 'The Killing', 'The Anderson Tapes', 'Thief', 'Reservoir Dogs', 'The Score' and many, many others. 'Rififi' is a classic heist movie but it is much more than that, it is a superbly written and acted character study. The robbery sequence itself is regarded as one of the most impressive in film history, but it is by no means the only thing worth watching this movie for. In fact I'd go so far as to call it perfect. Every time you watch it you discover something more of interest. Jean Servais, who later appeared in the entertaining horror sexploitation movie 'The Devil's Nightmare', is absolutely wonderful as Tony, a veteran criminal talked into joining his young friend Jo (Carl Mohner) in a daring robbery. His performance is first rate, but Mohner and the rest of the cast are equally good, including Drassin himself as Cesar, an Italian safe-cracker who inadvertently causes the gangs ultimate downfall. There's a brilliant scene between Servais and Drassin towards the end of the movie which is short but unforgettable. Look out for it. Truffaut raved about this movie calling it the best Noir he'd ever seen. I don't think he was exaggerating, it really IS that good, and personally I think it's a much better movie than Truffaut's more celebrated 'Breathless'. If you enjoy crime thrillers it doesn't get much better than this! Highly recommended!
29 of 41 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?