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Cloportes (1965)
"La métamorphose des cloportes" (original title)

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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 317 users  
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Three little criminals get a tip for a great coup with lots of money in it. Unfortunately they lack the starting funds to buy the required welding torch. So they persuade their successful ... See full summary »


(novel), (adaptation), 2 more credits »
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Title: Cloportes (1965)

Cloportes (1965) on IMDb 6.7/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Lino Ventura ...
Alphonse Maréchal
Catherine Verdier
Maurice Biraud ...
Georges Géret ...
Pierre Brasseur ...
Françoise Rosay ...
Annie Fratellini ...
Norman Bart ...
Un visiteur de la galerie
Georges Blaness ...
Dorothée Blanck ...
Une fille à l'hôtel particulier (as Dorothée Blank)
Jean-Pierre Caussade ...
(as J.P. Caussade)
Marcel Charvey ...
Un visiteur de la galerie
François Dalou ...
2nd Inspector
Michel Dacquin ...
Un barman de boîte de nuit (as Michel Daquin)


Three little criminals get a tip for a great coup with lots of money in it. Unfortunately they lack the starting funds to buy the required welding torch. So they persuade their successful colleague Alphonse to join their team. But the well thought-out coup fails, and Alphonse is the only one of them who ends up in jail for several years. When he's released, he's out for revenge. Written by Tom Zoerner <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Crime






Release Date:

8 September 1965 (Italy)  »

Also Known As:

Cloportes  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Italian censorship visa # 45655 delivered on 8-9-1965. See more »

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User Reviews

Quirky, tough-guy crime drama
28 December 2003 | by (Washington, DC) – See all my reviews

This movie is about trust, mistrust, truth, and lies.

It begins with a ragtag group of petty criminals planning, organizing, and then attempting to carry out a heist. We get the sense that their project is doomed from the start, a view held especially by their mastermind, Alphonse `The Fox' Marechal. Alphonse says his fellow thieves are birdbrains. However, he needs the money from the heist to support his lavish spending on wining and dining women.

We quickly see that Alphonse's mistrust of his team is not misplaced. His safecracking `expert' deceives him about the cost of their equipment and the value of the loot inside their target safe. The job ends up taking much longer than they budgeted, and results in their being found out by the police. Alphonse ends up being the only one caught, convicted and sentenced to prison time.

Five years pass until Alphonse is released from prison. It's payback time. He searches for the three birdbrains who double-crossed him, and for his share of their take.

This movie is overlong and would be ordinary if not for the presence of Lino Ventura. As Alphonse the Fox, Ventura is as charismatic and magnetic as any movie tough guy.

I never learned what or who is `cloportes' of the title. However, an odd scene during the title sequence at the beginning, showing cockroaches running across the camera lens, is neatly explained at the very end.

I reviewed this movie as part of a project at the Library of Congress. I've named the project FIFTY: 50 Notable Films Forgotten Within 50 Years. As best I can determine, this film, like the other forty-nine I've identified, has not been on video, telecast, or distributed in the U.S. since its original release. In my opinion, it is worthy of being made available again.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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