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Review: Le Combat Dans L'Île

Alan Cavalier's sleek noir rescued from 1962 obscurity
By GERALD PEARY  |  December 22, 2009
3.5 3.5 Stars

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Glam, studly Parisian yuppies by day, Anne (Romy Schneider) and Clément (Jean-Louis Trintignant) are feuding, brooding hellcats in their luxurious bourgeois flat. She's flirtatious, licentious, sexually frustrated, demanding love. He's an icy brute, acknowledging his Gilda-like, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof wife mostly when he's murderously jealous.

His obsessions are elsewhere: he belongs to an ultra-rightist death squad for whom he's blithely volunteered to assassinate a leftist Paris official. That's why he has a bazooka in his apartment!

Rescued now from 1962 oblivion, Alain Cavalier's black-and-white "noir" is sleek and cool, with complicated turns and thrilling shoot-outs and stormy betrayals, both political and romantic. It's great to have another look at the iconic Romy Schneider, a Rita Hayworth by way of Edie Sedgwick. And her eventual love interest is played by handsome Henri Serre, the too-rarely-seen Jim from Jules and Jim.

At the Brattle Theatre, December 25 - 31, 2009

  Topics: Reviews , Entertainment, Movie Reviews, Romy Schneider,  More more >
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