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.
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 »
Gustave Minda, better known as Gu, a dangerous gangster, escapes from jail. He goes to Paris to join Manouche and other friends, and get involved in a gangland killing. Before leaving the country with Manouche, Gu needs a final job to get some money. But that's not so simple when you have Inspector Blot tracking you, and have to deal with the consequences of the shooting in Paris...Written by
The scene taking place before the robbery, on the lost road, when the gangsters wait for the armored truck, is highly influenced by a very similar sequence in the film: Odds Against Tomorrow, in which you also have gangsters - Harry Belafonte and Robert Ryan - wait for a bank robbery. The music score is also nearly, if not, the same. See more »
Slow Going But Rewarding Heist Film Needs Another Look
While in many ways a quintessential heist film, and in other ways a gangster film, this brooding black and white masterpiece also deals with certain codes of honor, and much that is important in the film is left unsaid; the viewer may expect reactions that don't occur, may often question the motives of characters that don't speak, and it is only to viewing the film a second time that much of it comes clear; with the excellent Criterion transfers, it's fascinating to follow the second time with the included commentary; this is not an action-packed film at 2 1/2 hours, but a good deal does happen: lives are lost, a massive robbery takes place, and one is never too sure where the lines between law and disorder cross. Do not expect Instant Involvement with Le Deuxieme Soufflé--but it has it's rewards!
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