Johnny Hallyday (that most peculiar of oxymorons, the French rock star) plays an aging bankrobber who arrives in a small town to case the bank. He winds up staying with cinema icon JeanRochefort, here playing a retired schoolteacher. One man is taciturn and blunt. The other is chattyand insecure. Each begins to envy the other man his lifestyle. Hallyday plays at being tutorfor a day, while Rochefort tries on Hallyday’s leather jacket and pretends to be tough. This is… quiet, insightful character study, and one that draws you in from the opening frame. Hallydayisn’t an actor of much range, but he can do well when cast properly, and this is quite possiblyhis finest hour, his pug and weathered features given a strangely expressive taciturnity. Rochefortis always a delight, and he turns in stellar work here. The always welcome Edith Scob also putsin an appearance, here playing Rochefort’s sister.
For the most part, this is a very quiet film, so don’t expect much by way of environmentaleffects. Where appropriate, they are effective, and there are some very nice moments, such whenthe sound of a train and the opening credits music become indistinguishable. A low key job, then,but a good one.
The transfer is a 2.35:1 anamorphic widescreen one, and the colours are excellent. The imageis very sharp (you can see every detail of our leads’ age). The picture is also, unfortunately, verygrainy. As well, the edge enhancement is, at times, very distracting. Notice for instance, howbright the halo around Hallyday is as he walks away from the train.
None. In fact, worse than none. If I could give this category a negative star rating, I would.Not only are there no extras, but the subtitles cannot be turned off. Adding insult to injury, noattempt has been made to keep them outside the frame and in the black areas of the letterboxing.The menu is basic.
A wonderful film, one that deserves better treatment on disc than it has here.