Watch Un flic
- 1 hr 38 min
Un flic, released in 1972, is a French crime drama film directed by Jean-Pierre Melville. Starring Alain Delon, Richard Crenna, and Catherine Deneuve, the movie tells the story of a police commissioner and his team's investigation into a multi-million-dollar bank heist. The movie opens with a train hurtling through the snowy French countryside. Inside the train, three men are planning a heist to rob a bank located across the street from a Paris police station. One of the robbers named Simon (Richard Crenna) is an American whom the other two met by chance. The other two robbers, one of whom is played by Delon, are Frenchmen. They successfully rob the bank's safe deposit box but are forced to kill a security guard in the process.
Meanwhile, the film's protagonist, police commissioner Edouard Coleman (Alain Delon), is investigating a series of murders and robberies in the city. These investigations lead him to his old friend Simon, who he suspects was involved in the heist. Coleman also begins an affair with Cathy (Catherine Deneuve), who is Simon's mistress. As the investigation progresses, Coleman's team gets closer to catching the robbers, leading to an intense and thrilling showdown.
One of the most striking features of the movie is Melville's use of a cold and austere visual style that accentuates the film's themes of loneliness, betrayal and the inescapability of fate. The film's minimalist dialogue and slow pacing add to its contemplative and melancholic mood, making it a perfect example of the French crime genre known as the "polar."
Another noteworthy aspect of the movie is the involvement of real-life policemen in the production. Melville was known for his attention to detail, and he had several police officers consult on the film's production design and characterizations. This attention to authenticity is evident in the film's portrayal of police work, which is shown as laborious and detail-oriented.
The performances of the cast are also noteworthy. Alain Delon's portrayal of the brooding and stoic Coleman is a standout, and his complex relationship with both Cathy and Simon adds depth to the film's exploration of trust, loyalty and betrayal. Richard Crenna's performance as the enigmatic Simon is also notable, as he brings a sense of danger and unpredictability to the character.
Catherine Deneuve's role as Cathy, Simon's girlfriend, is smaller by comparison, but her hauntingly beautiful appearance and melancholic demeanor add to the film's somber tone. Melville's use of close-ups throughout the movie amplifies the emotional intensity of the actors' performances.
Un flic is also notable for its use of action sequences, which are sparse but intense when they do occur. The film's most memorable action sequence takes place on a train platform and is a masterclass of suspense and tension building. The climactic conclusion is also visually stunning and emotionally resonant, with Melville's use of music and sound design adding to the film's impact.
In conclusion, Un flic is a quintessential example of the polar genre and a testament to Jean-Pierre Melville's skills as a filmmaker. Its nuanced exploration of trust, loyalty, and betrayal, along with its stark visual style, memorable performances, and suspenseful action sequences, make it a timeless classic of French cinema.
Un flic is a 1972 crime movie with a runtime of 1 hour and 38 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.0 and a MetaScore of 72.