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Pepe Le Moko


List Price: CDN$ 32.99
Price: CDN$ 23.36
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Product Details

  • Actors: Jean Gabin, Gabriel Gabrio, Saturnin Fabre, Fernand Charpin, Lucas Gridoux
  • Directors: Julien Duvivier
  • Writers: Julien Duvivier, Henri Jeanson, Henri La Barthe, Jacques Constant
  • Producers: Raymond Hakim, Robert Hakim
  • Format: Black & White, DVD-Video, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: French
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: Criterion
  • Release Date: Jan. 14 2003
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00007CVS3
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #50,290 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)


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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

By Victoria Reyes on Feb. 20 2004
Format: DVD
High quality movie with Jean Gabin as the handsome and cool gangster hiding out in the seedy Casbah where people are packed in like sardines. It's a romance with a fine mixture of adventure in an exotic setting, crime drama, colorful characters, and suspense all inspired by Gabin's love for a beautiful, unconventional woman.
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Format: DVD
Pépé, a notorious gangster from Paris, has been forced to seek refuge in the maze of Casbah where he evades the police's futile attempts to capture him. During the police force's attempts to find a way to capture him, the mobster Pépé continues to raid jewelry stores and steal whatever he can get his hands on, and when he is not on a robbery he spends his time with his lover, Inès, or plays card. However, one night when Pépé is dodging the police's hopeless attempts to catch him, he crosses paths with Gaby Gould, a stunning Parisian woman. This encounter opens up Pandora's Box for Pépé and he falls in love with Gaby who reminds him of ultimate freedom. The score played in the film intensifies the perplexity of Pépé's situation that is further improved through cinematography, which produces a sense of entrapment. In addition, the misé-en-scene and acting is of world class. In end, Pépé Le Moko offers a spellbinding story, which at the end deliberately forces the audience to ponder the film's fundamental message.
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By A Customer on March 4 2003
Format: DVD
I'm not kidding! Criteron's DVD informs us that the amorous, animated skunk would never have come to life had it not been for French actor Jean Gabin's Pepe from *Pepe le Moko*. That's reason enough to like this movie: imagine how poorer the world would be without Le Pew. In the meantime, *Pepe le Moko* itself is somewhat overrated. Released in France in 1937, it was blocked from American shores years after the American re-make *Algiers*, with the result that the critics over here have been overgenerous with their praise. The movie's claim to be the "Father of Film Noir" can be demonstrably disputed . . . and even if you accept that claim as a given, you're still left with comparing it to later, greater movies in the genre. The fact is, the French are just not naturals at noir: any country that can create several philosophical and scientific systems of CUISINE is never really going to feel the grittiness of the noir milieu where it counts -- at the gut level. (The French can even name the genre -- "noir" -- without truly understanding what it's really about.) Example? Jean Gabin himself as Pepe, the exiled French gangster languishing in Algiers' Casbah. He's too civilized an actor for this essentially rat-like role. (At least Charles Boyer, in the American version, sort of LOOKS rat-like.) Finally, the leading lady is inadequate, in terms of looks and talent. After all this you may be wondering why I'm giving *Pepe le Moko* 4 stars. Location, location, location. Most of the film's world, clogged with humanity's odors and detritus, was miraculously concocted with the use of imaginative sets, but a great deal of it was shot on location in Algiers. All in all, the setting immerses you in its exotic locale to an extent that makes *Casablanca* seem like a tawdry back-lot.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
One of the most influential films of the 20th century, PEPE LE MOCO has a legendary reputation for not being seen. In 1938 Hollywood remade it as Algiers, but kept the original off-limits. Jean Gabin, in a truly iconic performance, is the titular notorious and elegant master thief who is safe as long as he stays in the Casbah.
"Women long for him, his rivals want to destroy him, and the law is breathing down his neck..." Enter a Parisian playgirl and Pepe is compelled to risk his life and its confines once and for all.
This landmark crime romance is the precursor to film noir. Restored to full length, this digital transfer with new subtitles is loaded with extras including a 1962 interview with director Julien Duvivier. Highly recommended.
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Format: DVD
For those who are familiar with the sort of film Hollywood had to offer during its "Golden Age", it is a revelation to see French productions of the same period. They are completely different in every respect. Fresh, inventive, bitingly witty or hopelessly romantic, the classic French film creates a sort of visual and narrative poetry that is both an essential part of its realism, and transcends reality to create a different sort of world, rich in heightened emotion.
Films such as Marcel Carne's "Quai des Brumes", and "Le Jour Se Leve" offer definitive examples of the French poetic realist school with its appealingly romantic drifters (often played by Gabin), sad and worldly women (the likes of Michele Morgan and Arletty), its doomed romances, and shadowy mise en scene. Yet even amongst such undisputed classics as these, Pepe le Moko stands out as something special from its opening shots of the Casbah to its tragic conclusion.
It is particularly fortuitous that we should be able to compare this film to its vastly inferior American remake, Algiers (1938). All that Algiers lacks can be aptly summed up in one word: Gabin. For it is Gabin that makes "Pepe" what it/he is. It is impossible not to feel your heart beat a little quicker at his entrances and exits, and he electrifies the screen at the merest flicker of an eyelid. The film without him (Algiers) betrays the essential silliness of the central plot conceit and charming Charles Boyer does not have the force of personality to smooth out plot weaknesses. In Pepe le Moko one can see the best example to be had of the iconic Gabin role, and in the merging of star and character find something special and riveting.
Criterion has done a magnificent job with this release!
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