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Un Flic (1972)

Cast: Alain Delon, Alain Delon, Catherine Deneuve, more...
Director: Jean-Pierre Melville, Jean-Pierre Melville
    see all cast/crew...
Rating: Not Rated
Studio: Anchor Bay
Genre: Foreign, France, Neo Noir, Manhunt, Capers, Cops, Neo Noir, Quest, Manhunt, Manhunt
Running Time: 100 min.
Languages: French
Subtitles: English
    see additional details...

Recently Rented By Cinenaut

Parisian police commissioner Coleman (Alain Delon) is not a happy man, but he does what he can to get through each day. He has recently started having an affair with Cathy (Catherine Deneuve), and that helps a little. Cathy is also Simon's girlfriend and Simon (Richard Crenna) is Coleman's friend. Unfortunately, Simon is also the head of a gang of criminals. When Coleman's investigation of a drug-smuggling ring closes in, their rivalry comes to a head. One of the highlights of this film is a stunt involving a helicopter and a moving train. ~ Clarke Fountain, All Movie Guide

You might also enjoy:
Bob Le Flambeur
Melville's influential failed heist tale

Shoot the Piano Player
See how Melville influenced Truffaut in this tragic crime classic

GreenCine Member Reviews

A Flake by talltale July 13, 2005 - 8:22 PM PDT
3 out of 4 members found this review helpful
Anyone who had anything to do with UN FLIC, French writer/director Jean-Pierre Melville's last film (he's the one credited in some circles with starting La Nouvelle Vague)--from the director/screenwriter to his actors--seems to be on automatic pilot. Just because they're all essaying very typical roles in a typical genre movie is no excuse for the routine work done here. Alain Delon (just entering his middle age), Catherine Deneuve and Richard Crenna (that's right) ought to have created a few sparks, but none appear.

The initial bank heist is beautifully done, a later heist involving a train and helicopter is slow beyond belief (although it does offer a little kicker with a magnet and compartment door that you may not have seen). No one knew that this was to be Melville's final work, of course, so perhaps they thought they were just making another generic crime film. Well, kiddies: the moral here is "Never Assume." If you are interested in Melville, rent "Le Cercle Rouge"or "Le Samourai" instead.

Less than the sum of its parts by RRiutta January 18, 2005 - 11:13 PM PST
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful
After viewing "Le Circle Rouge", I had high hopes for this film. Melville and Delon were back together for another heist flick. Add Catherine Deneuve and things could get steamy.

Instead, the film was pretty and devoid of life.

The movie is beautifully shot, using grays and blues to good effect. The heists are clever and taut. The helicopter and train scene could have benefitted from a bigger budget, but the director tried. You'll see what I mean.

I wondered what Crenna and Conrad were doing in this movie and I still am. Maybe Melville's love of America extended to hiring Americans to play French men. Crenna's lack of emotional range, however, played well with his character.

Deneuve looks great. And that's about it. Her role, although central, was tiny and could have been filled by any beautiful woman.

Delon, as always, looked cool. I would have preferred a bit more angst, ratcheting up the tension.

Melville never moved beyond a great premise: a criminal and a cop, competing for a woman while one commits a crime the other must solve. The tension should have been thick. Instead, we're left underwhelmed and asking questions that could have been easily answered.

With a little more fleshing out of the characters, filling plot holes, and adding some emotion, this could have been another classic. Instead, we have some good heist scenes and beautiful cinematography.

If you like Melville or Delon, that might just be enough.

a thoroughly unsatisfying film. by yulek November 16, 2002 - 10:16 PM PST
7 out of 8 members found this review helpful
okay, what's the big deal about this movie? it's been written up as a classic, as a precursor to many excellent french and international films, influencial to many film makers. i don't get it. this was a pretty lousy film.

i won't to spoil the plot, but i'll touch on some point. Un Flic seems really forced, badly edited, and incomprehensible.

the relationship between Edourd and Simon is poorly built up, their friendship is limited to Edourd coming over to Simon's club a few times. very few words are spoken between them.

there's this really awfully drawn out and contrived helicopter and train scene. there's this interrogation of one of the more interesting bad guys which consists of the cops shining an interrogation light on him, and the next thing you know, they've gotten the information out of him. LAME!

catherine deneuve's character is totally incomprehensible, her relationship with Simon and Edourd is obvious and yet useless.

and then there's the editing. some of the most interesting shots are ruined by very sloppy followthrough. the most uninteresting sequences are drawn out while the most interesting ones just fly through.

finally, we, the viewers, are given very little to make us believe in the story. it's like there's something really important missing that the film's makers just failed to share with the audience. maybe it's the translation, but i don't think so. it was just a poor script to what could have been an interesting story.

on a positive note, it's well filmed, especially the opening scenes, and has an interesting soundtrack.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.55)
64 Votes
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