Hoonivercinema: Monday Movie Trailer

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Like Bullitt, the French Connection is not specifically a car movie, but one in which an iconic car chase takes place, elevating it to the pantheon of great movies for car nuts. Directed with razor-edged tension by the masterful William Friedkin – who won a Best Director Oscar for his work – the film is centered on a New York Cop played by an intense Gene Hackman who is trying to take down an international drug syndicate.
The movie also stars Roy Scheider who was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for his role. He didn’t win, but the film garnered 5 additional Oscars, including Best Picture. It was the first R-rated film ever to do so. The film is truly of the era, its gritty Cinéma vérité style becoming the favored look for crime dramas in the early ’70s, and Hackman’s caustic cop – like Eastwood’s Dirty Harry – becoming an archetype.
The car chase that identifies the movie today is actually a car-train chase as Hackman’s Popeye Doyle attempts in a commandeered Pontiac Le Mans to keep up with an elevated train containing his suspect. This scene alone is evidence in favor of the film’s Best Editing Oscar win. Check a bit of that out, as well as Gene Hackman being a badass, after the jump.
Great news for Netflix and Amazon Prime subscribers, The French Connection is currently available for streaming. It’s also available from the usual pay to play sources for a modest three bucks.

Image: YouTube

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  1. PotbellyJoe★★★★★ Avatar

    This is all you need to know about why we will never have a film like this again.
    All it cost to shoot was $40k and a one-way ticket to Jamaica.

  2. Tanshanomi Avatar

    I had an art professor in film class proclaim that The French Connection marked the victory of nihilism over heroism in film, and thus in society. The “hero” characters are not all that likeable, and what’s worse, they cannot redeem those other flaws or even make us comfortable with them because they are unable to achieve their purpose for existing: the challenge of overcoming the adversary. Unlike the time-honored charismatic outlaw trope (the sympathetic, non-violent cat-burgler who the audience is not-so-secretly rooting for, à la The Thomas Crown Affair), the bad guys in the French Connection were thoroughly crafted to be despicable and yet, in the end, get away.
    The notable thing is not that The French Connection story was told the way it was, but that it was so highly regarded by mainstream society. It was the first time that people genuinely enjoyed being told that life is an unfair cesspool of injustice in which nobody really deserves unbridled admiration.