Tag Archives: Michel Simon

Julien Duvivier – Panique AKA Panic [2018 Restoration + Extras] (1946)

Criterion wrote:
Proud, eccentric, and antisocial, Monsieur Hire (Michel Simon) has always kept to himself. But after a woman turns up dead in the Paris suburb where he lives, he feels drawn to a pretty young newcomer to town (Viviane Romance), discovers that his neighbors are only too ready to suspect the worst of him, and is framed for the murder. Based on a novel by Georges Simenon, Julien Duvivier’s first film after his return to France from Hollywood finds the acclaimed poetic realist applying his consummate craft to darker, moodier ends. Propelled by its two deeply nuanced lead performances, the tensely noirish Panique exposes the dangers of the knives-out mob mentality, delivering as well a pointed allegory for the behavior of Duvivier’s countrymen during the war. Read More »

Sacha Guitry – Les 3 font la paire AKA Three Make a Pair (1957)

Plot: Jojo’s ambition is to become a gangster, but to be admitted into a gang he has to prove himself by committing a daring act. To that end, he kills someone in broad daylight, not knowing that his victim is an actor who is playing a scene in a film directed by a cranky film-maker (Darry Cowl). The murder is caught on film, leading Commissaire Bernard (Michel Simon) to think that the killer will be easy to find. Sure enough, Bernard soon makes his arrest, a clown from a circus, but then he faces an almost insurmountable problem. The clown has an identical twin, who is also a clown with the same circus. Both men claim to be innocent… Read More »

Marcel Carné – Le Quai des brumes aka Port of Shadows [+Extras] (1938)

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Synopsis
Down a foggy, desolate road to the port city of Le Havre travels Jean (Jean Gabin), an army deserter looking for another chance to make good on life. Fate, however, has a different plan for him, as acts of both revenge and kindness render him front-page news. Also starring the blue-eyed phenomenon Michèle Morgan in her first major role, and the menacing Michel Simon, Port of Shadows (Le Quai des brumes) starkly portrays an underworld of lonely souls wrestling with their own destinies. Based on the novel by Pierre Mac Orlan, the inimitable team of director Marcel Carné and writer Jacques Prévert deliver a quintessential example of poetic realism and a classic film from the golden age of French cinema. Read More »