Florence Carala and her lover, Julien Tavernier, want to murder her husband - Julien's boss - by faking his suicide. But after Julien's killed him, and had left, he remembers he's forgotten the rope outside the window which could implicate him, and he returns to the building to remove itWritten by
Stephan Eichenberg <email@example.com>
Louis Malle shot his lead actress Jeanne Moreau in close-up and natural light and often without make-up. Moreau, an icon of French film, had never been seen like this before, to the extent that lab technicians, reportedly appalled at how unflatteringly she was photographed, refused to process the film. Once they were persuaded to, however, it soon began clear that Malle had captured every nuance of Moreau's performance. See more »
The lift and stairs end on the 10th floor, where Julien, Geneviève, and Maurice enter the lift. But Carala's office is one floor above. The board in the lobby also shows: "10 Direction Générale". See more »
I'm the one who can't take anymore. I love you. I love you. So we have to. I love you.
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This film is a master piece. Miles Davis's music is superb. It is an object lesson on the art of combining sound and vision. The tension and the brooding Parisian atmosphere are heightened with cool and poignant playing. It is surprising (to the best of my knowledge) that this is the only complete original film score he produced.
The story of the crime is clever. It has reasonable human motivation and plot, and is steadily revealed. But, it is the study of 'being in the wrong place at the wrong time' that makes this film a classic. The series of chance events that will dramatically effect the characters' lives, give this film a similar feel to 'Run Lola Run' or 'Irreversible', dispute this film's linear structure and age. The dark cinematography is excellent.
I have only had an opportunity to see it once (I only just caught it because BBC4 listed it under its English title), but I would like to see it again.
The soundtrack is widely available, but I can not find the film on DVD or PAL VHS. This film should be available to a wider audience, for me, preferably in French with English subtitles.
P.S. This wonderful film is now available on DVD as part of the Louis Malle Collection: Volume 1. (Updated 11/10/2006.)
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