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Lacombe, Lucien (1974)

Original Title : Lacombe Lucien
Director : Louis Malle
Writer : Louis Malle
Patrick Modiano
Genre : Drama
Country : France
Language : French
Producer : Louis Malle, Claude Nedjar
Photography : Tonino Delli Colli
Distributor : J. Arthur Rank Film Distributors, Twentieth Century-Fox Film Corporation, Criterion Collection, The, arte Video, Video Film Express
IMDB ID : 0071733
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poster for "Lacombe, Lucien" by Louis Malle (1974)
Lacombe, Lucien (1974) - Louis Malle
 

Starring

Pierre Blaise Lucien Lacombe
Aurore Clément France Horn
Holger Löwenadler Albert Horn, the tailor
Therese Giehse Bella Horn
Stéphane Bouy Jean-Bernard
Loumi Iacobesco Betty Beaulieu
René Bouloc Faure
Pierre Decazes Aubert
Jean Rougerie Tonin, the chief of police
Cécile Ricard Marie, the hotel maid
Jacqueline Staup Lucienne Chauvelot
Ave Ninchi Mme Georges
Pierre Saintons Hippolyte, the black collaborator
Gilberte Rivet Lucien's mother
Jacques Rispal M. Laborit, le propriétaire
Jean Bousquet Peyssac, the schoolteacher
Franz Rudnick 
Jean-Louis Blum 
Claude Marcan 
 

Plot

A small town in the south-west of France, summer of 1944. Having failed to join the resistance, the 18 year old Lucien Lacombe, whose father is a prisoner in Germany and whose mother dates her employer, works for the German police. He then meets France Horn, the daughter of a rich jewish tailor.
 

Comments

I think this film was the one that really opened my eyes as to just how horrible life was in France under the German occupation and led to my great interest in almost any film depicting the era, or even better, newsreels.A young man develops the power of life or death over others by "accidentally" joining the Gestapo-even the French police are forced to defer to him. We see the casual brutality of the French Gestapo, the tell-tale denunciation letters, the deportation of Jews.An excellent portrait of how unpleasant everyday life could be under the occupation-a fascinatingly horrible historical period.