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Crime à la Française: Six Imported Prints

August 6 - 25

In partnership with the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, we present Crime à la Française, a series of six classic French films centered on crime and criminals, all in archival 35mm prints.

From FANTÔMAS and PÉPÉ LE MOKO through MESRINE and A PROPHET, the French cinema has shown a special affinity for the world of crime, matched only, perhaps, by the American cinema. Indeed, the genre has had an ongoing reciprocity in the two country's cinemas, with the atmospheric gloom of the French poetic realism cycle of the late 1930s feeding into the American film noir movement of the 1940s; the American film noir movement providing reference points for the cinephiliac riffs of French New Wave of the 1960s; and the stylistic flourishes of the French New Wave inspiring such revisionist Hollywood films as BONNIE AND CLYDE and POINT BLANK.

The films in the series cover the map of malfeasance from crime of passion to heist to financial chicanery to gangsterism. Each week pairs two films featuring a different icon of French tough-guy style: Jean Gabin, Jean-Paul Belmondo, and Lino Ventura.

All prints courtesy of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy.

Martin Rubin, Associate Director of Programming

Special thanks to Amélie Garin-Davet of Cultural Services of the French Embassy; Laurence Geannopulos and Denis Quenelle of the Cultural Service at the Consulate General of France in Chicago; Brian Belovarac of Janus Films; Eric Di Bernardo of Rialto Pictures; Alex Kopecky of Olive Films.