This made-for-TV miniseries is IMHO the best version of Leroux's classic.L'Herbier's thirties effort is hardly watchable today because of its obsolete playing .Podalydès's in a style closer to Belgian comic strips ,is not much convincing.
This one has a tight suspenseful screenplay and a fine cast:Claude Brasseur is the best Rouletabille in history and François Maistre,Catherine Rouvel,Lucien Nat and Marika Green (a beautiful mysterious Mathilde Stangerson)are first-class thespians.Filmed in Touraine ,in Le Rivau castle near Chinon,its filming on location is a great improvement on the Lherbier version.
A very suspenseful atmosphere, a sense of mystery,and an added scene which is not featured in the book: Rouletabille prisoner in an elevator ....on the Eiffel Tower! The second part of the novel "le Parfum de la Dame en Noir" was filmed afterward ,but with a different cast ,and the charm was partly broken.
What is the French TV waiting for?When will it screen it again, after all those years?
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