peteg's blog - noise - movies - 2024 01 06 LeDoulos

Le Doulos (1962)

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More Jean-Pierre Melville. Black-and-white. This one has a similar structure to Le Cercle Rouge: a professional thief (Serge Reggiani) is released from prison with a few scores to settle and a job to do. The focus is actually on his mate (Jean-Paul Belmondo) who is tasked almost single-handedly with furthering the plot. A few ladies are involved around the edges and are ill-used. I enjoyed police inspector Jean Desailly's acting the most, all hand gestures and switchbacks. The twist is not very convincing but the Checkhovian device in the climax does work, allowing that everyone has to get theirs. The cinematography is often engrossing.

Roger Ebert: three-and-a-half stars in 2008. Everything so American: those massive yank tanks on the streets of Paris. Bosley Crowther in 1964: talky and tiresome. Did he walk out before the twist?