Le deuxième souffle is a French Neo Noir policier/gangster thriller. Directed by Jean-Pierre Melville (Bob le Flambeur (1956), Two Men in Manhattan (1959), Le Doulos (1962), Le Samouraï (1967), Le Cercle Rouge (1970), Un Flic (1972)). The film stars Lino Ventura as Gustave Minda, Paul Meurisse as Inspector Blot and Raymond Pellegrin as Paul Ricci, Marcel Bozzuffi as Jo Ricci, Christine Fabréga as Manouche, Michel Constantin as Alban and Pierre Zimmer as Orloff. Cinematography was by Marcel Combes, and music by Bernard Gérard.
|Gu Minda (Ventura)|
|Paul Ricci (Pellegrin) and informer|
|Paul Ricci's Marseille nightclub|
|Manouche (Christine Fabréga)|
Paul Ricci gets some relatives to whack Jacques. Jacques is cowboyed down in front of Manouche at her cafe. Alban good friend of Gu and Manouche's bartender/bodyguard protects her shoots it out with the assassins.
The shootout brings the big heat. Inspector Blot (Meurisse). Blot is a hardboiled vet of the Paris underworld. He knows he's dealing with various factions of the mob and that he'll get no info from all involved. It's all a comedy routine with him as he pokes fun at the principals involved at the crime scene.
|Crime scene investigation Alban and Blot (Paul Meurisse)|
Lino Ventura is memorable as Gustave, the hardcase criminal who faces all bad choices. Paul Meurisse is great as the sarcastic and assertive Inspector Blot.
Screencaps are from the Criterion DVD. 8/10