7.8/10
8,651
58 user 68 critic

Bob le Flambeur (1956)

Bob le flambeur (original title)
PG | | Crime, Drama, Thriller | 1959 (USA)
After losing big, an aging gambler decides to assemble a team to rob a casino.

Director:

(as Melville)

Writers:

(original story) (as Melville), (adaptation) (as Melville) | 2 more credits »

Watch Now

From $1.99 (SD) on Prime Video

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Le Doulos (1963)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A burglar betraying other criminals, prepares for a big heist with a trusted friend that might be as untrustworthy as he.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Serge Reggiani, Jean Desailly
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

A gangster escapes jail and quickly makes plans to continue his criminal ways elsewhere, but a determined inspector is closing in.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Raymond Pellegrin
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Set during occupied France, a faithless woman finds herself falling in love with a young priest.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Emmanuelle Riva, Irène Tunc
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

After leaving prison, master thief Corey crosses paths with a notorious escapee and an alcoholic former policeman. The trio proceed to plot an elaborate heist.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Alain Delon, Bourvil, Gian Maria Volontè
Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

An account of underground resistance fighters in Nazi-occupied France.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Jean-Pierre Cassel
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

1941 in a small town in Nazi occupied France. Against the will of its elderly male and his adult niece residents, the Nazis commandeer a house for one of their officers, Lt. Werner von ... See full summary »

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Howard Vernon, Nicole Stéphane, Jean-Marie Robain
Un Flic (1972)
Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

After a shaky first heist, a group of thieves plan an even more elaborate- and more risky- second heist.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Alain Delon, Richard Crenna, Catherine Deneuve
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A French UN delegate has disappeared into thin air, sending reporter Moreau (Jean-Pierre Melville) and hard drinking photographer Delmas (Pierre Grasset) on an assignment to find him. Their only lead is a picture of three women.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Pierre Grasset, Christiane Eudes, Ginger Hall
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In a snowball fight between schoolboys the handsome Dargelos hits the chest of Paul, who drops unconscious to the ground. Paul has a deep affection for Dargelos, and later denies that there... See full summary »

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Nicole Stéphane, Edouard Dermithe, Renée Cosima
Adventure | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Broke French ex-paratrooper turned amateur boxer Michel Maudet becomes bodyguard for the fugitive corrupt banker Ferchaux.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Charles Vanel, Michèle Mercier
Le Samouraï (1967)
Certificate: GP Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

After Professional hitman Jef Costello is seen by witnesses his efforts to provide himself an alibi drive him further into a corner.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Alain Delon, François Périer, Nathalie Delon
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Therese is a nun-in-training who returns to "civilian" life to care for her young sister Denise.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville
Stars: Philippe Lemaire, Juliette Gréco, Yvonne Sanson
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Anne (as Isabel Corey)
...
...
Guy Decomble ...
Le commissaire Ledru
André Garet ...
...
Claude Cerval ...
Colette Fleury ...
Suzanne - la femme de Jean
René Havard ...
L'inspecteur Morin
Simone Paris ...
Yvonne
...
McKimmie - le commanditaire
Henry Allaume ...
Un gangster (as Henri Allaume)
Germaine Licht ...
Céleste Régnier - la concierge (as Germaine Amiel)
Yvette Amirante ...
La copine d'Anne
Dominique Antoine
Edit

Storyline

Bob, an old gangster and gambler is almost broke, so he decides in spite of the warnings of a friend, a high official from the police, to rob a gambling casino in Dauville. Everything is planned exactly, but the police is informed about the planned coup. Meanwhile in the Casino Bob starts to gamble. Written by Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Bob le Flambeur  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

FRF 17,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$8,985, 29 July 2001, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$15,586, 29 March 2018
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film is considered a precursor to the French New Wave films that started in 1959. See more »

Goofs

McKimmie demonstrates the four-dial combination-lock for the gang by turning all four dials before opening and closing it. But when Roger practices his safe-cracking technique on it, he misses the upper-right dial and instead works the lower-right dial a second time (after sandpapering his fingertips). See more »

Quotes

Roger: Locks are like pretty ladies. You need to practise to know them.
See more »

Connections

Remade as The Good Thief (2002) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Revolutionary crime-noir, from the director of Le Samourai
27 March 2008 | by See all my reviews

Bob Le Flambeur opens with a glimmering shot of early morning Paris, where we find the rugged, nonchalant hood Bob Montagne, sauntering through the neon lit streets, looking every bit the icon of cinema that he is. To Bob, everything in life is a gamble, an uncertainty, a ten-to-one shot. He inhabits a world of games and chances... as the gravel voice narration points out, "the city can be both heaven and hell, as long as you know how to play it". He is, as the title suggests, a man who lives and loves gambling. A one-time crook now taking it easy, we find him huddled in a smoky apartment - the walls painted black and white like a chessboard - hard at work towards yet another pay off. When he isn't 'working', Bob lives the simple life, hanging out in bars with old pals or relaxing in his penthouse apartment. His only real companion is Paolo, a young tearaway who idolises and emulates Bob's look and lifestyle. The child of a former friend, Bob becomes the surrogate father figure to Paolo, looking out for him and making sure he isn't consumed by the lure of the mean streets.

Bob le Flambeur was one of Melville's earliest entries into the gangster cycle that would later give birth to his better-known film, Le Samourai. Like that film, Flambeur is a technically assured and understated journey into the underworld, employing a raw cinematic intensity, knowing irony and loose plot, which can probably be seen as an influence on contemporary filmmakers like Martin Scorsese, Ringo Lam, Paul Thomas Anderson, John Woo, Quentin Tarantino, David Mamet and Wong Kar-Wai. It can also be seen as something of a revolutionary work, with Melville's bold use of real locations, available light and hand-held cameras offering an obvious precursor to the style of the later nouvelle vague, and, to great filmmakers like Godard, Chabrol and Truffaut. Like those directors, Melville has a strong understanding of genre conventions and the post-war Gangster ethos, and thus, crafts a film that is both European in style and sensibility, but at the same time, nods to the classic gangster movies of 30's and 40's Hollywood... giving us a cool and slick film, that still has enough edge and grit to make the characters seem like real people.

The plot unfolds at a natural pace, slowly at first, but gradually building momentum once all the major players have been introduced, with Melville creating something of a confrontational three-way struggle between Bob, Paolo and Isabelle Corey's deceptive femme-fatal. As the film progresses, we delve deeper into both the plot and the back story, finding Bob seriously out of pocket after a spot of bad luck at the casino... and, with only one way to go to get the cash back, he decides to pull off the ultimate gamble... by which, allow himself to be pulled back down into the criminal underworld that he'd almost escaped. From this point on the film becomes concerned with the intricacies of crime, the impact of friendship and the fixation and fundamental need to succeed, or else, forfeit the next ten to twenty years of your life... and for the aging Bob, this is not an option. At this point, loyalties are tested and precision film-making is pushed to the limits as the plot continues headlong towards its climax. The story takes all manner of twists and turns along the way, with Melville keeping the story rooted in the details of his characters and the intricacy of the crime it's self, so that by the end the film the whole thing has seemingly worked towards chance and blind luck... proving to some extent Melville's grand metaphor that life is the ultimate gamble.

Melville's film is one of the classic post-war noir films, if not one of the most important French films ever made... an evocative depiction of glistening black and white France, replete with shady gangsters, crooked cops, gambling dens, back street cafés and the ultimate heist, made all the more potent by the astounding performance of Roger Duchesne as the laconic and iconic Bob, and with great support from Daniel Cauchy as Paulo, Isabelle Corey as the wide-eyed Anne and Guy Decomble as Inspector Ledru.


8 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 58 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Sci-Fi Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular sci-fi movies and TV shows available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial