7.6/10
26,713
61 user 136 critic

Mesrine Part 1: Killer Instinct (2008)

L'instinct de mort (original title)
Trailer
1:40 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

The story of french gangster Jacques Mesrine, before he was called Public Enemy N°1.

Writers:

(book), (scenario) | 2 more credits »
8 wins & 12 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Biography | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The story of notorious French gangster Jacques Mesrine.

Director: Jean-François Richet
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Ludivine Sagnier, Mathieu Amalric
36th Precinct (2004)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In the underbelly of the Parisian criminal world, the Police are frustrated by a gang committing a series of violent robberies. Leo Vrinks and Denis Klein are two cops seeking promotion, ... See full summary »

Director: Olivier Marchal
Stars: Daniel Auteuil, Gérard Depardieu, André Dussollier
A Prophet (2009)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A young Arab man is sent to a French prison where he becomes a mafia kingpin.

Director: Jacques Audiard
Stars: Tahar Rahim, Niels Arestrup, Adel Bencherif
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A murder detective must follow the footsteps of a brutal killer within the secrets of a classist college.

Director: Mathieu Kassovitz
Stars: Jean Reno, Vincent Cassel, Nadia Farès
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

At twenty, all Maria wants to do is live life to the fullest. She lives with her benevolent, but aging parents. Other characters are: Linda, her best friend, the dredger Manu, Bouboule, her... See full summary »

Director: Jean-François Richet
Stars: Virginie Ledoyen, Yazid Aït, Mar Sodupe
Read My Lips (2001)
Crime | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

She is almost deaf and she lip-reads. He is an ex-convict. She wants to help him. He thinks no one can help except himself.

Director: Jacques Audiard
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Emmanuelle Devos, Olivier Gourmet
Dobermann (1997)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

The charismatic criminal Dobermann, who got his first gun when he was christened, leads a gang of brutal robbers. After a complex and brutal bank robbery, they are being hunted by the Paris... See full summary »

Director: Jan Kounen
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Tchéky Karyo, Monica Bellucci
Inner City (1995)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Director: Jean-François Richet
Stars: Cyril Aubin, Cyrille Autin, Emmanuelle Bercot
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Two friends bring their daughters with them on a beach vacation and find themselves in an awkward situation. A remake of the 1977 film "Un moment d'égarement".

Director: Jean-François Richet
Stars: Vincent Cassel, François Cluzet, Lola Le Lann
La Haine (1995)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

24 hours in the lives of three young men in the French suburbs the day after a violent riot.

Director: Mathieu Kassovitz
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Hubert Koundé, Saïd Taghmaoui
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A police sergeant must rally the cops and prisoners together to protect themselves on New Year's Eve, just as corrupt policeman surround the station with the intent of killing all to keep their deception in the ranks.

Director: Jean-François Richet
Stars: Ethan Hawke, Laurence Fishburne, Gabriel Byrne
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The outcast red-haired teenager Rémy is bulled at school and lives with his estranged mother and sister in France. The also red-haired psychiatrist Patrick befriends Rémy and helps him to ... See full summary »

Director: Romain Gavras
Stars: Vincent Cassel, Olivier Barthelemy, Justine Lerooy
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Paul
...
...
Florence Thomassin ...
Sarah
Michel Duchaussoy ...
Pierre André Mesrine - le père de Jacques Mesrine
Myriam Boyer ...
La mère de Jacques Mesrine
Abdelhafid Metalsi ...
Ahmed - le proxénète
...
Le milliardaire
Deano Clavet ...
Roger André
...
Mustapha Abourachid ...
Le harki
Sofiane Benrazzak ...
Le Fellagah #1 (as Sophiane Benrezzak)
Edit

Storyline

Mesrine: Killer Instinct -- the first of two parts -- charts the outlaw odyssey of Jacques Mesrine (Vincent Cassel), the legendary French gangster of the 1960s and 1970s who came to be known as French Public Enemy No. 1 and The Man of a Thousand Faces. Infamous for his bravado and outrageously daring prison escapes, Mesrine carried out numerous robberies, kidnappings and murders in a criminal career that spanned continents until he was shot dead in 1979 by France's notorious anti-gang unit. Thirty years after his death, his infamy lives on. Mesrine was helped along the way by beautiful and equally reckless Jeanne Schneider (Cécile de France), a Bonnie to match his Clyde. Mesrine made up his own epic, between romanticism and cruelty, flamboyance and tragedy. Written by Music Box Films

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

mesrine | gangster | france | epic | murder | See All (95) »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong brutal violence, some sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

22 October 2008 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Mesrine Part 1: Killer Instinct  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£135,999 (UK) (7 August 2009)

Gross:

$551,660 (USA) (25 February 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The filming of this and Mesrine Part 2: Public Enemy #1 (2008), which lasted nine straight months, was done in reverse chronological order so that Vincent Cassel could progressively lose the weight he gained in preparation of the role, as Cassel knew he couldn't gain weight while filming. See more »

Goofs

At the metro station in Montreal, the man is standing in Sherbrooke station smoking, but as the train arrives, the footage is from Bonaventure station. See more »

Connections

Featured in Gangstars (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Palmeras
Written by Gilberto Rojas Enriquez
Performed by Greg Moen et les Socquettes Blanches
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
An exciting thriller dressed as a biopic
2 August 2009 | by (London, UK) – See all my reviews

A hugely entertaining action vehicle for Vincent Cassel on fine form. One can't help but think of it in terms of its close comparitors: Michael Mann's Public Enemies, a biopic of American gangster John Dillinger, is still on general release; and Steven Soderbergh's Che (Part One) was playing on the screen in the next-door auditorium. Not only is this Mesrine a more entertaining character than both Depp's Dillinger and Benicio Del Toro's Che Guevara, the bipartite biopic is a more entertaining film. That's not to say it's better though.

In this first part, we are shown Mesrine the career criminal. He gets underway with little backstory or prompting, and plays out the film as an increasingly autonomous bank robber. There's no empire building, no examination of the criminal mind or relationships, peripheral or central. It's basically a cycle of robbery, jailbreak and swagger: a brisk, urban updating of the gentleman highwayman.

This makes for a punchy criminal escapade, nicely shot in well-judged industry-standard-Greengrass-cam by Robert Ganz and lovingly charted with well-dated design by Emile Ghigo. Cécile de France's moll Jeanne is as subordinate as Marion Cotillard's Billie to Depp's Dillinger. I would have liked to have seen more of Elena Anaya's Sofia, both actor and character, who promised to be a significant figure in the Mesrine mythology but goes the same way as even the mighty Depardieu. By the end I was looking forward to the second instalment to develop something a little more revealing, or at least complex. 7/10


27 of 35 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Colt 1911 with a 12 round magazine? phlupple
Mesrine: The Story of a Stupid Criminal mfits
Note to Hollywood! this is how you make a frickin movie! jlnewton147
Movies like this? kitie7
Is the US release in jeopardy? neil57
What happened to Sofia? Almudena_Fernandez
Discuss Mesrine Part 1: Killer Instinct (2008) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?