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Elevator to the Gallows (1958)

Ascenseur pour l'échafaud (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 29 January 1958 (France)
1:49 | Trailer

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A self-assured business man murders his employer, the husband of his mistress, which unintentionally provokes an ill-fated chain of events.



(adaptation), (adaptation) | 3 more credits »
1 win. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Yori Bertin ...
Jean Wall ...
Simon Carala
Frieda Bencker
Sylviane Aisenstein ...
Yvonne, La fille du bar
Micheline Bona ...
Gisèle Grandpré ...
Jacqueline Mauclair
Jacqueline Staup ...
Marcel Cuvelier ...
Le réceptionniste du motel
Gérard Darrieu ...
L'adjoint du commissaire Cherrier
Le substitut du procureur
Jacques Hilling ...
Le garagiste


Florence Carala and her lover Julien Tavernier, an ex - paratrooper want to murder her husband by faking a suicide. But after Julien has killed him and he puts his things in his car, he finds he has forgotten the rope outside the window and he returns to the building to remove it... Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

rope | murder | german | alibi | thief | See All (151) »


More Hitchcock Than Hitchcock! See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

29 January 1958 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Elevator to the Gallows  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$7,354 (USA) (24 June 2005)


$104,817 (USA) (14 October 2016)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(copyright length)

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Louis Malle shot his lead actress Jeanne Moreau in close-up and natural light and often without make-up. Moreau, an icon of French film, had never been seen like this before, to the extent that lab technicians, reportedly appalled at how unflatteringly she was photographed, refused to process the film. Once they were persuaded to, however, it soon began clear that Malle had captured every nuance of Moreau's performance. See more »


When Julien is hanging from the cable and the elevator suddenly starts moving down the shaft, there is a shot of him where the walls around him aren't moving as they should. See more »


Julien Tavernier: How many billions did the Indochina War bring you? And now Algeria, how much?
See more »


Featured in Geburtstagskinder der Nouvelle Vague (2007) See more »


Au Bar Du Petit Bac
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User Reviews

My Friend before Dinner
18 June 2007 | by (Virginia Beach) – See all my reviews

I never physically met the man, but I consider Malle an old friend.

He made two films that I think are among the most perfect and intellectually adventurous I know. He also made some good films that aren't life-changing but that show insight. This is one of them.

There are no new ideas here. It unfolds as one expects. The drama is muted to the point of homeopathy.

And yet we like it because it is so economical. Its bare, honest, true. So we like it, just like we gravitate to an open person regardless of whether she is dumb. I appreciate Bresson for this, his economy which blesses the viewer with a mind that necessarily filters what we see. But Bresson goes too far and presses into the impress of abstraction. Malle is real because it is overtly untheatrical.

Its worth seeing because it is seamless bamboo and because it informs "Vanya" and "Dinner." But in terms of its effect; its callow post-noir noir. And it has that hint at the end of a "film" within that condemns the couple.

Ted's Evaluation -- 3 of 3: Worth watching.

7 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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