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6 Reviews
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Early Gem!, 13 Jun 2013
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Gary Hanna (Newry, N. Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (L'assassin habite au 21) [DVD] [1942] (DVD)
This is a wonderfully assured debut by Henri-George Clouzot with an ingenious ending . The story has a fine ensemble of characters blending wit, macabre and drama. For me there is clear elements of Hitchcock's "Murder" as well as the comic touches of the "The Thin Man" that really set's it apart from the ordinary... Plus this being Clouzot one can also see themes that he would later return to, such as the boarding house here possessing elements of the village in "Le Corbeau "and the school in "Les Diabolques" all in all this is a very fine film and one to enjoy again and again. The picture and sound quality is also perfect as one has come to expect from Masters of Cinema.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Early Cinema Serial Killer, 4 Aug 2013
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Paul Barrett (PENARTH, VALE OF GLAMORGAN, GB) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (L'assassin habite au 21) [DVD] [1942] (DVD)
Great movie. Loved it. The direction, the production, the locales, the plot the action. The terrific cast. A real treat for a jaded crime film fan. A picture that could be able to be remade in the US today. However one I suspect that would be destroyed were this to happen.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Murderer Lives at Number 21, 17 April 2014
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This review is from: The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (L'assassin habite au 21) [DVD] [1942] (DVD)
The French are so good at mystery thrillers. This is an example at one of the best. It is atmospheric, menacing and utterly compelling. You will never guess the denouement.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars French Noir., 3 Dec 2013
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This review is from: The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (L'assassin habite au 21) [DVD] [1942] (DVD)
Love French Noir. The older the better. I don't speak Franch but have no problem with sub-titles. This is a wonderful film. I recommend.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very satisfied., 11 Oct 2014
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Exactly as described. Very satisfied.
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4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fresnay Fuels This Early Clouzot Effort, 23 Nov 2013
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The resourceful Inspector Wens(Pierre Fresnay)is charged with capturing the elusive serial killer Monsieur Durand so named as he leaves a card with that name on the bodies of his victims. Wens showgirl sweetheart Mila Malou(Suzy Delair)decides to assist him as she believes any credit she may accrue from helping him could boost her flagging career.When an informant of Wens suggests looking closer at the guests of a down at heel boarding house 21 Avenue Junot, Wens assumes the identity of a priest and things start to move.

Part screwball comedy and conventional noir thriller, it takes time to adjust to constantly shifting in tone from one to the other but once you do there is much to enjoy here. Some of the repartee especially between Wens and Mila are a hoot and the hotel guests are a fairly colourful bunch- Jean Tissier as Lalah Poor and Marc Natol as Armand are standouts.It all builds up to a fairly satisfying conclusion with some clues along the way for the more observant.However it is Fresnay as the sardonic and cunning Wens who holds the piece together and whenever he is on screen Murderer Lives... fairly sparkles.

The restoration by Gaumont to these uneducated eyes is a decent one with good close ups and shadow definement is passable if a little grey. MoC include a nice 28 page booklet concerning the production but some sort of documentary about Clouzot and his career would have been a real bonus.

Still for fans of Clouzot an essential addition. Not quite Le Corbeau or Les Diaboliques but considerably more fun than the overinflated Wages Of Fear.
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The Murderer Lives at Number 21 (L'assassin habite au 21) [DVD] [1942]
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