Wonderfully filmed and acted story of tragic love amidst the French
underworld at the turn of the 20th century.
The complex, layered relationships, and subtle manipulations and
interplay between the characters show the hallmark of all Jacques
Becker's work, an interest in the subtle details of human behavior and
emotion, instead of grand, sweeping, complex plots.
Both romantic and cynical, and filmed without any attempt to create a
cliché 'period' look, this brings an air of reality and immediacy to a
story that in other hands seem familiar, maudlin, or trite.
The Criterion is an excellent transfer, has very good extras
and can often be had used for a reasonable price. If you have a
multi region player, I might look to this first.