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Le glaive et la balance (1963)

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A boy is kidnapped and murdered on the French riviera. The police, who had watched the delivery of the ransom to TWO men gives chase once they determine that the boy is dead. The police ... See full summary »


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Title: Le glaive et la balance (1963)

Le glaive et la balance (1963) on IMDb 6.3/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Johnny Parsons
Jean-Philippe Prévost
François Corbier
Pascale Audret ...
Anne Tonietti ...
Christine Prévost
Marie Déa ...
Mme Winter
Elina Labourdette ...
Simone Darbon
Le procureur
Jacques Monod ...
Le commissaire Pranzini
Henri Vilbert ...
Un juré
Lou Bennett ...
The Lou Bennett and Kenny Clark Jazz Combo
Paul Amiot ...
Un homme
Teddy Bilis ...
Un juré
Charles Blavette
Claude Cerval ...


A boy is kidnapped and murdered on the French riviera. The police, who had watched the delivery of the ransom to TWO men gives chase once they determine that the boy is dead. The police never loses sight of the TWO men who flee on a speedboat and run into an old lighthouse after landing. However, when the police surrounds the lighthouse, THREE men come out, each one claiming that he was there on a stroll and the following investigation can not determine who is lying. The three men are put on trial, but the jury finds them innocent, because they can not determine which two are guilty. Summary justice is made by a mob when the three men leave the court after their aquittal. Written by Ricardo Zucca <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama


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Release Date:

1 February 1963 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Two Are Guilty  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

And justice for all...
2 July 2003 | by See all my reviews

French critics often talk about Cayatte's cybernetics...But,they say,some day ,the robots went wrong.Roughly from 1960 onwards,well another cheap trick of the nouvelle vague.

At the time,"le glaive et la balance" was slagged off by the young turks of the rising Godardesque generation :"bad actors" "agonizing trial" "overblown" "unlikely story" name it...

Well,if a story had to be plausible to be filmed,99% of the production would be dismissed .The problem lies in the fact that Cayatte deals with a very serious story:a child's murder,three suspects,two of whom are guilty.

Retrospection illumines different aspects of the movie,unavailable,contextually,to critics of the time of issue.Firstly ,this is par excellence the kind of movie Hollywood could remake .Its components are contemporary:a suspenseful thriller with a whodunit at that,three long flashbacks searching the suspects' lives,and a final trial which would effortlessly make today's directors (and script writers) drool:shall we sentence one innocent or shall we acquit two criminals?

The populace will a way a lot of viewers will find unbearable.And justice for all???

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