"Du Rififi a Paname", what does this mean? Rififi, coined by Jules Dassin, means violent conflict, and Paname is slang for exotic Paris. This movie shows gang conflicts in Paris, and then the American mob, represented by George Raft, shows up.
Gabin is smuggling gold from Paris to Tokyo, where the price is much higher. This is 1966 when there was no open market in gold. He also works closely with Gert Froebe, who has his own smuggling operations to Cuba and other places. Another gang is moving in on them both. Gert is willing to abandon the gold business, but Gabin is stubborn. He fights back at the gang moving in.
Adding some spice is Froebe's faithful and loving wife, Nadja Tiller, who nevertheless has a yen for Gabin, who is more interested in business.
Adding even more spice is that early on there is a U.S. Treasury agent who has managed to worm his way into Gabin's confidence and become his bodyguard with reliable Marcel Bozzuffi. While Gabin is trying to survive, the agent provides another focus as he tries to get vital information about the organization from Froebe.
The conflict in Paris is out of hand and the American mob has decided it wants its cut, so Raft shows up to lead a sit down meeting. Gabin, speaking English, is fierce at his rivals in the same room, one of whom can recognize his bodyguard -- if he sees him. Several elements of suspense going on at the same time.
One of the more memorable scenes in the picture is a death scene played by Froebe. Gabin's determination is also memorable. Bozzuffi always makes his mark, as does Raft. I do not know the name of the actor who played the agent, Mike Thompson. He was suitably cool, alert and calculating.
In color, we get a glossy look at gang rivalry over territory and profitable business. It makes for an entertaining crime movie package. It's hardboiled but yet in a kind of gentlemanly way that relieves the toughness with elements of the ordinary.
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