Two men, a painter and a poor guy, have to cross over Paris by night during World War II and to deliver black market meat. As they walk along dark Parisian streets, they encounter various ... See full summary »
Two men, a painter and a poor guy, have to cross over Paris by night during World War II and to deliver black market meat. As they walk along dark Parisian streets, they encounter various characters and adventures until they are arrested by German police. Written by
Claude Aurent-Lara was one of the best directors France ever produced. A good director takes a similar harmless story and elevates to high art. A bad one cannot. It is in the way he frames a shot, builds the tension and especially the transition shots that define one. In that case, Aurent-Lara ranks up there with the likes of Eisenstein and Hitchcock. The man was an ultimate craftsman who understood cinema. Shame on Truffaut who just showed his ignorance for slamming him and his movies. This movie also known as four full bags teams two of France's biggest stars of the era, Jean Gabin and the one name Bourvil in a delicious comedy with a human heart. It is WWII and occupied France is running short of pigs thus creating a black market for it. Bourvil's job is to get the already killed pig's carcass aka pork in four cases and deliver it to the seller who will take it to the market. He meets and enlists the "homeless" Gabin to assist. They must outwit scared Parisiens and Nazis on the night watch to achieve this deceitfully simple task. That is all you need to know to enjoy this war time romp. The laughs come at a clip a minute, mainly from the garrulous and belligerent Gabin with Bourvil, the straight man in their Lawrence and hardy relationship. Before the night is over and daylight comes, we shall meet dogs, drunks, experience the fear of an occupied people who hope for a better tomorrow all done with a airy touch. And the last scene will make any cinema lover and human being rejoice. I love this movie so much, I think though it is not as complex as Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove shares its agony and eccentricity of the nature of war.
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