24 user 29 critic

The Ax (2005)

Le couperet (original title)
Not Rated | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 2 March 2005 (France)
1:32 | Trailer
A chemist (Garcia) loses his job to outsourcing. Two years later and still jobless, he hits on a solution: to genuinely eliminate his competition.




Donald E. Westlake (novel), Costa-Gavras (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
José Garcia ... Bruno Davert
Karin Viard ... Marlène Davert
Geordy Couturiau Geordy Couturiau ... Maxime Davert (as Geordy Monfils)
Christa Théret ... Betty Davert
Ulrich Tukur ... Gérard Hutchinson
Olivier Gourmet ... Raymond Machefer
Yvon Back ... Etienne Barnet
Thierry Hancisse ... Inspecteur Kesler
Olga Grumberg Olga Grumberg ... Iris Thompson
Yolande Moreau ... Préposée poste
Dieudonné Kabongo Dieudonné Kabongo ... Quinlan Longus (as Dieudonné Kabongo Bashila)
Jean-Pierre Gos ... Garagiste
Vanessa Larré Vanessa Larré ... Prédatrice
Serge Larivière ... Inspecteur Police
Jeanne Savary Jeanne Savary ... La présentatrice TV


Bruno Davert, a chemist working for a paper company, is fired. After three years he's still unemployed, too much competition for the few job position he could fit in his sector. He sent tons of resumes, he attended many qualifying courses, he tried everything but there is nothing to do: no job for him in the industry. The only healthy company in the sector is "Arcadia", but joining it is just an impossible dream. At this point Bruno is desperate. What he could do: to kill all the competitors? Could he? Written by 1felco

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Some people would die to get (him) this job. [Scandinavian DVD.]


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Ads on billboards in the background were created by famous Italian photographer Oliviero Toscani, a friend of the director. See more »


At the beginning, when Davert (Garcia) gets out of the shower and then immediately returns to the bathroom to vomit, you can see in the mirror that he is wearing an underwear. See more »


Gérard Hutchinson: Vous savez, au bout de cinq ans de chômage on est devenu... non, comment on dit en français?
Bruno Davert: Has-been.
Gérard Hutchinson: Ah oui, voilà, has-been.
See more »


References Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior (2003) See more »

User Reviews

Everyone for himself and God against all!
15 July 2007 | by dbdumonteilSee all my reviews

Costa -Gavras 's body of work does not lack in unity.

Except for his two fist movies,which were thrillers , a romantic tale ("Clair de Femme" ) and a comedy that does not count ("Conseil de Famille' ) all that he has made display social and political concerns.

From his early French classics ("Z "(He is alive) "L'Aveu" ,"Etat de Siège") to his American period ("Missing" "Betrayed" "Music Box" ) to his French comeback ("Amen" ) there is a cohesion which even André Cayatte ,his closest contender in the field,did not reach.

And then "Le Couperet" .Don't be mistaken.It's not that much different from CG's previous efforts.Based on a Donald Westlake novel-a writer whose black humour was fierce- ,it contains lines Henri Jeanson or Michel Audiard would not have disowned.Comedy walks a fine line ,but it walks hand in hand with tragedy .You must watch it seriously to realize what heavy things CG is saying.While making his film verge on parody,he is also putting the French society in a less exalted light than we have been used to seeing it in.Suddenly our world seems frightening (the gas station man who hides a gun in his cash register,the icily impersonal female headhunter -I wish I had had my gun!-)It is really the society of the leave-you-behind and perhaps -I hope not - an omen of things to come in the future.I do not speak of the murders obviously.There are other ways of destroying a human being."When I saw them enter the restaurant ,the German ex-engineer says,I knew that I didn't stand the slightest chance ".

The last picture has (and will be) widely talked about.Actually it reminds me of the ending of Mankiewicz's "All about Eve " when Phoebe tries Eve's crown .When you get to the top,there is nowhere to go but down.

A film noir,a farce,a psychological drama ,a social satire and a movie where CG talks politics.One of his most accessible and one of his strongest works.At seventy plus,CG is as young as the reporter who bothered the fascists in "Z".He is abetted by Jose Garcia on top of his game.

Like this?Try these.....

"Extension du domaine de la lutte" Philippe Harel 1998

"L'adversaire" Nicole Garcia 2002

"Working girl" Mike Nichols 1988

10 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 24 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.



Belgium | France | Spain


French | Dutch

Release Date:

2 March 2005 (France) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ax See more »


Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

Recently Viewed