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CODE NAME: MELVILLE

Weekends in December at the Trylon

Put on your fedora and raincoat, grab a cigarette, and sidle into the Trylon to celebrate the centennial of Jean-Pierre Melville (born Grumbach, 1917). His love of 1930s American crime movies and time in the French Resistance during World War II (Melville was his code name) helped him become a filmmaker who lit the way for the French New Wave.

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Upcoming Films in this Series

Starts Fri, December 1

LE SAMOURAÏ

(1967, 35mm, 101m, French with English subtitles) w/Alain Delon, Nathalie Delon, François Périer. Delon, the prototypical Melvillian actor, plays Jef Costello, an unemotional, perfectionist hitman. When he is witnessed making a mistake, his options careen from bad to worse. This rare 35mm print is presented courtesy of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. FRI/SAT 7:00 9:15 SUN 5:00 7:15

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Starts Fri, December 8

BOB LE FLAMBEUR

(1956, DCP, 98m, French with English subtitles) w/Roger Duchesne, Isabelle Corey. Aging and nearly broke, gangster/gambler Bob (Duchesne) decides to knock over a casino—despite the warnings of his friends. An early picture that embodies the Melville style, Bob le Flambeur is one hell of a film. FRI 7:00 SAT 9:30 SUN 5:00

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Starts Fri, December 8

LEON MORIN, PRIEST

(1961, DCP, 130m, French with English subtitles) w/Jean-Paul Belmondo, Emmanuelle Riva. In Nazi-occupied France, an atheistic young widow (Riva) engages a young priest (Belmondo) in conversations about faith, truth, and desire. FRI 9:00 SAT 7:00 SUN 7:00

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Starts Fri, December 15

ARMY OF SHADOWS

(1969, DCP, 145m, French with English subtitles) w/Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse. Not released in the U.S. until almost 40 years after it was made, Melville’s bleak depiction of the tensions, betrayals, arrests, and loneliness that were routine in the French Resistance is partly based on his own wartime experiences. It’s a must-see. FRI/SAT 7:00 9:45 SUN 5:30 8:15

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Starts Fri, December 22

LE SILENCE DE LA MER

(1949, DCP, 87m, French with English subtitles) w/Howard Vernon, Nicole Stéphane. Preceded by the short film 24 HEURES DE LA VIE D’UN CLOWN (1946, DCP, 18m). Melville’s thoughtful, deftly directed first feature. When a cultured Nazi lieutenant, Werner von Ebrennac (Vernon), commandeers a home in a small French town, the family obeys his orders but protests his presence by resolutely remaining silent. These two films are screened courtesy of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. FRI/SAT 7:00 9:00

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Starts Fri, December 29

LE CERCLE ROUGE

(1970, DCP, 140m, French with English subtitles) w/Alain Delon, André Bourvil, Yves Montand. An ex-con, an ex-detective, and a jewel thief plot the perfect heist. If only Le Commissaire Mattei (Bourvil) weren’t on their trail. Melville’s penultimate film—he died in 1973—Le Cercle Rouge is meticulously crafted and perfectly paced. FRI/SAT 7:00 9:45 SUN 5:15 8:00

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