THE RED CIRCLE is possibly (though Melville made 5 stone cold masterpieces in his career), his best film. It was also his penultimate. This is important. You see, Melville died at the age of 55 but was making an even greater film each time. The previous ARMY OF SHADOWS, is nail bitingly taut, calling to task the collaborators of the Vichy government and acknowledging the force of resistance, Brutally and unvarnished.

Corey (Alain Delon) is released from prison. Its early than expected but he has been a good subject. Shortly before he leaves however, a prison warden tips him off. A big score. A prestigious jewellery shop that he could rob. Corey listens and likes the idea. So he visits fellow hood Rico (André Ekyan). Things might work. Things might just be alright. They go off and play pool. Things start to take shape but is it as easy as it seems?

Right, the 4K is an issue. I mean this respectfully as I know the work that was involved. It kicks the colours into a realm of excess. To much dark and light. Not as warm and smooth as the screened version I saw. Melville would have picked this up if he were alive. To the viewers who love the mans work, it will jar. The simple reason is you would have seen this before. You would have been drawn in and this will take you out.

The extras are also a problem. To few. ‘The Prefect Circle’ is excellent. Giving new insight into the film and also jumping the gun and asking what would Melville have done next. Now. 1970s films are an interesting conversation indeed.



‘The Prefect Circle’

‘Under the name Melville’

Ginette Vincendeau presentation

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