5 user 13 critic

Scene of the Crime (1986)

Le lieu du crime (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama, Romance | May 1987 (USA)
2:35 | Trailer
In the woods, a 13-year-old boy is grabbed by an escaped convict and told to bring money later that day. The boy does as he's told, only to be attacked by the convict's partner. A murder ... See full summary »


André Téchiné
3 nominations. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Catherine Deneuve ... Lili Ravenel
Danielle Darrieux ... La grand-mère
Wadeck Stanczak ... Martin
Nicolas Giraudi Nicolas Giraudi ... Thomas
Jean-Claude Adelin Jean-Claude Adelin ... Luc
Jean Bousquet ... Le grand-père
Michel Grimaud Michel Grimaud ... Roger, le serveur
Philippe Landoulsi Philippe Landoulsi ... L'inspecteur
Claire Nebout Claire Nebout ... Alice
Jacques Nolot ... Le Père Sorbier
Victor Lanoux ... Maurice


In the woods, a 13-year-old boy is grabbed by an escaped convict and told to bring money later that day. The boy does as he's told, only to be attacked by the convict's partner. A murder ensues, and through happenstance, the murderer and the boy's mother form an alliance. All this takes place in four days during which the boy has his first communion, his separated parents face each other amidst grandmother's hopes they'll reunite, the grandfather just wants to go fishing, the school's chaplain complains about the boy's behavior, and the convicts' shared girlfriend comes, gun in hand, to help them escape to Tangier. The mother's surprising decisions complete the story. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


The film underwent an HD restoration in 2018 by Eclair, with the support of Arte France's cinema unit and MK2 Films. See more »


When Thomas first tries on his suit that "itches", his top shirt button is undone. But when he undresses in his room shortly after that, he undoes that button too. See more »

Alternate Versions

Video version runs 74 minutes. See more »


La voix du printemps (Frühlingsstimmen)
Music by Johann Strauss
Performed by Tiroler Symphonie Orchester Innsbruck (as Orchestre Symphonique d'Innsbruck)
See more »

User Reviews

holds up well until the final scenes
1 January 2011 | by mjneu59See all my reviews

The title might lead viewers to expect an elegant parlor room whodunit, but this elegant French import is something else entirely: part thriller, part domestic melodrama, and in large part a story of the end of innocence for a troubled young boy on the threshold of adulthood, who stumbles on the hideout of an escaped convict. Under threat of death the boy is sworn to silence, but the real trouble begins after his divorced mother learns the secret and becomes fatally attracted to the fugitive. The story unfolds with rare narrative subtlety, expressed in unspoken thoughts and barely repressed emotions. Too bad the plot is then allowed to collapse in the final act, with all the conflicting elements forced together in a rushed climax, followed by a long, inconclusive fade-out meant to appear ambiguous but looking more like the end result of writer's block. The weak resolution partially mars an otherwise attractive and well-acted drama, handsomely photographed in a glorious corner of French countryside at the end of a long, dry summer.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 5 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.






Release Date:

May 1987 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Scene of the Crime See more »


Box Office

Gross USA:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

T. Films, Films A2 See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed