Upon its much-belated American release in 2006, the New York Film Critics saluted Army of Shadows with their Best Foreign Film award, recognizing it as much more than just a lost film from the 1960s, but one of cinema’s great works. Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Jean-Pierre Cassel, and Simone Signoret star as underground resistance fighters who must grapple with their conception of honor in their battle against Hitler’s regime. Applying the atmospheric style of his gangster classics (Le Samourai, Bob Le Gambler), Melville explores the impact of violence rather than events themselves, creating a universal portrait of the tragedy and absurdity of man’s behavior.
Appears in: Classic French Cinema
Other Films by Jean-Pierre Melville
For many Jean-Pierre Melville’s best film if not masterpiece, Hong Kong action film legend John Woo once called Le Samouraï “the closest thing to a perfect movie that I have ever seen.” Jeff Costello (Alan Delon) a cool-eyed contract killer known for his extraordinary attention to stylish detail, meets the beautiful lounge pianist Cathy and …