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The Story

“One must choose. To die… or to lie.”

Introduced by John McDonald
One of Australia’s best-known critics. He writes a weekly art column for the Sydney Morning Herald, a weekly film column for the Australian Financial Review, and contributes to a wide range of local and international publications.

Melville’s rigorously directed and intricately plotted tale of self-defined morality in the criminal underworld focuses on a convict who seeks revenge for the murder of his girlfriend. This is the first of Melville’s explicitly modernist crime films in which the world created appears predetermined, patterned, curiously abstract, almost geometric. Serge Reggiani and Jean-Paul Belmondo perfectly ‘impersonate’ the Hollywood film noir anti-heroes so admired by the director since the early 1930s. Also features Michel Piccoli.

Synopsis by Adrian Danks.






Jean-Paul Belmondo, Serge Reggiani, Jean Desailly, René Lefèvre


Jean-Pierre Melville

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