but surprisingly this wasn't much of a problem, as, despite me not really knowing what was going on, i was happy to watch everything play out, as le doulos is a very sexy film! i mean COMMON, you really think I'm going to turn down a high contrast black and white film, set in Paris, with a jazz score, trench coats and belmondo? well, think again!
All style, little substance. The Nouvelle Vague directors showed their love of American film noir, and their films are a joy to watch, but they rarely equal their American role models, except in flashes. Still, you can’t go wrong watching these for the ambience, and in the case of “Le doulos,” Jean-Paul Belmondo in his prime.
I know this is shameful but, try as I may, I can't help finding film noir films tedious and hard to follow. I guess I would be a terrible gangster, as the constant shifts in who's backstabbing whom just leave me lost and bored. I admit the film had a cool atmosphere, and there were some interesting plot twists, but my attention wandered and even Belmondo's smoldering looks couldn't rein it in.
The dual focus becomes a centrifugal force for the plot. Might be better (or at least make more sense) if there were more interaction between Belmondo and Reggiani. But maybe that's the whole point of this film? The climactic scene certainly makes clear the doppelganger motif while concluding the theme of friendship/honor as a twisted, fateful, and macabre tale. (also, what's with Fabienne's chinoiserie?)
3.5/5. Sure, the main actors are great. Opening and ending scenes are beautifully shot. The story turns out to be interesting as it approaches the end. However, dialogues were not captivating. Most of the times, they sounded awkward and unnecessary. Plus, I found the useless misogyny in the film distressing.
3.5 - I get its influence, from Tarantino to French cinema in general, but it is too long especially it’s second act. And the best parts on the movie are on its last twenty minutes, where we see many plot twists in the film be shown. The performances are subtle yet engaging and believable. The writing is decent, but there are better noir films out there.
Belmondo's looks carry this film. Otherwise it's a snooze. Starts off well-paced, but after the botched robbery, it wanders all over. Unnecessary recap shots mean the audience is very ahead of the action. Terribly sadistic treatment of the blonde is a big turn-off. The men gradually become less and less interesting (or even identifiable) to the point where it doesn't really matter who is getting killed anymore.