Friday, July 30, 2010

Le Doulos

Instead of taking French lessons at a school, online or with the Rosetta Stone, I am taping French movies on my DVR and watching them (usually on a Sunday night). Here was my most recent fare ...

Le Doulos

One of the meanings of the French "le doulos" is "hat," and hats convey an abundance of meaning in this spare, stark Jean-Pierre Melville excursion into film noir, Gallic style. For example, simply offering a hat to a hat-check girl gives Melville the opportunity to linger hesitantly on the object in question, just long enough to cause a slight discomfort. Melville is similarly in love with lights and shadows, with obscuring and revealing, appropriate for a film like Doulos in which the intricate plot keeps the viewer guessing as to what is going on and who is doing what to whom. Nicolas Hayer's brooding black-and-white cinematography aids Melville enormously in creating the tense atmosphere that is all-important to this subtly exciting film of loyalty and betrayal. Special mention must be made of the centerpiece interrogation scene, an eight-and-a-half minute marvel filmed in one take in which the camera and the actors dance around each other with nary a false step. Special credit, too, must go to the marvelous cast, especially Jean-Paul Belmondo's ambiguous Silien and Serge Reggiani's determined yet thoughtful Faugel. Though some fans of American noir may find Le Doulos a trifle too existential, most will appreciate the skill with which it has been made. ~ Craig Butler, All Movie Guide

Ladies, you will enjoy Jean-Paul Belmondo...

1 comment:


Great idea and fun too I bet.

From the BBC series on Paris, Blood and Chocolate (Part 2 of 3). Enjoy!

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