7.1/10
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4 user 8 critic

And Hope to Die (1972)

La course du lièvre à travers les champs (original title)
A crook on the run hooks up with a criminal gang to commit a kidnapping. However, things don't go quite as planned.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Nadine Nabokov ...
Majorette
André Lawrence ...
Chef gitan
Don Arrès ...
Mastragos
Louis Aubert ...
Renner
Ellen Bahl
Béatrice Belthoise
Jean Coutu ...
Inspector
Jean-Marie Lemieux ...
Lester
Michel Maillot ...
Gypsy
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Storyline

The one that runs like the hare of French title is a Tony Cardot, young French pilot, who very unfortunately crashed his plane into a group of Gypsy children not far away from Montreal. Pursued by a group of vengeful Gypsies, his way accidentally crosses that of Charley, the boss of a gang planning a big caper. Taken prisoner by Charley and his men, Tony will become involved in the affair against his will... Written by Guy Bellinger

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

From this split-second on these men are going to be very rich... or very dead! See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

15 September 1972 (France)  »

Also Known As:

And Hope to Die  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Emmanuelle Béart. See more »

Quotes

Mattone: It don't work, nothing ever works with the French, except having kids. I read that in a book once.
See more »

Connections

References Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Western à la française
9 November 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Even before the film gets underway, we've had... a Freudian scene of children playing in a French street (one boy slices open another's bag of marbles, which tumble down some steps), a shot of drum majorettes marching round a Canadian field, a full-blown homage to Sergio Leone, a couple of Lewis Carroll references, and some near-subliminal freeze-frames of dead children in black-and-white. And all this before the opening credits have finished.

"La course du lièvre..." is a film bristling with tantalising ideas, not all of which are fully resolved or explained. One major theme is that of childhood and games, though the point that René Clément seems to be making, that we are all just big children, is perhaps less interesting than the fun he has expressing it. At its simplest level, this is a slightly tongue-in-cheek Western-style caper movie; for much of the time we can even forget that we're in modern-day Montreal, as the long middle section in which Jean-Louis Trintignant's enigmatic "Froggy" is gradually accepted into Robert Ryan's gang is set in and around a backwoods cabin that wouldn't be out of place in a Peckinpah movie.

Though Trintignant and Ryan are never less than fascinating to watch, particularly in their scenes together as the power balance gradually shifts between them, this is one of those films (unlike Clément's "Plein soleil") where the whole really doesn't go beyond the sum of the parts. It's a film to enjoy for the intelligence and inventiveness of the script, and above all for the virtuosic flair of Clément's direction, particularly in the long chase sequence immediately following the credits, starting with Trintignant leaping off a moving train and ending with him pushing a man out of a moving car. The heist scene later on, involving a fire engine inside a skyscraper, is actually a little disappointing, the consequence perhaps of the director trying a little too hard to achieve a "wow" response.

Ryan, by the way, had such difficulty learning the French dialogue for this film, that Clément gave him gibberish lines to speak, just so that he could get the mouth movements right for later dubbing (Aldo Ray, on the other hand, learnt his lines phonetically). Watch out for Emmanuelle Béart's uncredited film début as "girl eating cake" during the opening sequence.


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