★★★★½ /DCP/ Becker’s one true masterpiece, a stunning reimagining of his style, finds profound depth in the riveting story of a group of men planning a prison escape. Becker, always a master at the small details revels in the mundane routines of prison life and within the agonizing methodical execution of the planned escape. A mesmerizing humanist tale of desperation, hope and horrifying betrayal.
Never thought that Becker would enslave my heart with this movie - - how long I believed that nothing ever will repeat the feeling I got while watching "A Man Escaped", but oh my, this is simply genius.What an atmosphere.The subtle camera work and structured monochrome construct left me speechless. I'll need a week to recover from what I saw. Groundbreaking, really.
By far the best escape movie I 've seen, "Le Trou" delivers with remarkable originality the suspense of the group's preparation for their exit to freedom, and on a couple of occasions via aural devices. Turning viewers' expectations on their head, Becker's film contains unabridged the amoral universe so typical of French cinema since the late 1940s. The all-male cast of inmates is superb and the cinematography glows!
"Becker doesn’t elide any detail and lets his scenes go on and on so we understand just how much effort it all takes. It’s agonizing to watch but never tedious or boring. There’s something weirdly Zen about these characters. They’re anxious to get out, but there’s an air of resignation about them. LT is not just about tough guys trying to break out of prison; it’s about doomed romantics."- B. Ebiri, Village Voice
Perfect recreation and celebration of the French Resistance movements. All types had to work together against the Occupation. The lead fellow even looked like Francois Mitterand, who escaped 3 times from a German POW camp and later led the Resistance. Mitterand first came to see the benefits of socialism in his POW camp. Excellent portrayal of the ostracism of a collaborator. Sharp, precise editing and camerawork.
Who would have thought that watching someone dig a hole would be so engaging. Smart, restrained as well as inventive at the same time. Acting is pretty sub-standard, but the direction more than makes up for it. Becker has a great eye for detail and knows exactly where to put the camera to make the mundane seem quite exciting.
This was a great addition to the prison escape genre and the ending was awesome, I had to watch twice, I kept waiting for the turn to greatness and it wasn't until the end that I really felt it...the prison seemed to be really humane,I also like when the plumbers get their comeuppance - just a few handy slaps save the day, in general it felt a little too tame/convienent for me, I would have liked a bit more danger
The first thing I noticed was the fashion. Even in prison, the French like to dress well. I hate to say it, but I don't think you can trust a man in a sweater vest. I'm sure there are plenty of perfectly nice people who wear them. I've been known to wear them myself. This is edge of your seat cinema.
if I have to compare bresson and becker's prison escape themed films. I prefer bresson because of inner voice (Narrator) and usage of magnificent mozart ..but in terms of acting this film is much better.There are great actors who reflect the tiresome atmosphere of digging scenes very successfully.important part of human nature is an inevitable betrayal.