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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All The Spinach You Can Eat...
..or at least it appears that Gene Hackman’s hard-bitten, uncompromising narcotics cop, Jimmy 'Popeye’ Doyle has imbibed something that didn’t agree with him in this fast-moving, visceral 1971 police thriller directed by ‘budding movie brat’ William Friedkin. Despite borrowing some of its cinema-verité, hand-held camera techniques...
Published 15 months ago by Keith M

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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I went to great lengths to get these films
I went to great lengths to get these films. In their time they were regarded as exceptional but neither comes close to expectations. Actually they are rather awful and, as much as I have tried to make allowances for their age, there is very little that I can say in their favor.
In The French Connection (1) there are two positives - Gene Hackman does not act badly and...
Published 8 months ago by Adrian Collingwood


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars They don't make them like this anymore., 7 July 2014
By 
Eoghan88 (Crowthorne, England) - See all my reviews
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Two classic 70's cop films that helped define the gritty anti-hero protagonist role, along with other such classics as Bullitt and Dirty Harry. This came way before, it seems, every protagonist was mass produced from the same blueprints.

You won't find any flashy effects or choreographed action scenes here, instead what you get is a fresh serving of tension, class dialogue and excellent writing, which go together to create a great pair of films in a fantastically priced box.

I was surprised with the sequel, having become accustomed to today's standards of trash that get the go ahead for rebooting from Hollywood producers for quick dollars. This film, although fictional, unlike its predecessor, provides a great experience for fans of the original and gives some closure to the story after the first films brilliant, yet frustrating ending.

The complete antithesis to today's standards in (big budget) film, and all the better for it. Buy it. Buy it now.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars you just have to see it for yourself, 3 Feb. 2013
By 
verity (DEVON: U.K.) - See all my reviews
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Gene Hackman as the American cop who tries to do things his way in France is super. There is laughter and frustration. You have to feel for him. He knows no better than the way things are done where he comes from and these foreignors don't even speak good old american . Don't mistake this for a light hearted film. There is violence and determination from beginning to end.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All The Spinach You Can Eat..., 9 April 2014
By 
Keith M - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
..or at least it appears that Gene Hackman’s hard-bitten, uncompromising narcotics cop, Jimmy 'Popeye’ Doyle has imbibed something that didn’t agree with him in this fast-moving, visceral 1971 police thriller directed by ‘budding movie brat’ William Friedkin. Despite borrowing some of its cinema-verité, hand-held camera techniques from fellow budding cineaste John Cassavetes, Friedkin’s film was to set the tone for future 'maverick cops’ (from Eastwood’s Dirty Harry and Lumet’s Frank Serpico through to TV’s Jack Regan and, even, John Luther) and the realism of the later films of Lumet and Martin Scorsese, thereby making The French Connection a seminal example of the genre. The other particularly notable (and refreshing) thing about Friedkin’s film, particularly given its (initially at least) elliptical narrative style (as his parallel stories of Marseille and Brooklyn-based drug barons and gangsters takes some minutes to come together) and its (relatively) novel filming techniques, was how comprehensively it swept up at the Oscars, winning for film, director, actor and adapted screenplay (by Ernest Tidyman, based on Robin Moore’s real-life tale of New York narcotics cops, Eddie Egan and Sonny Grosso).

The fact that Hackman took the top acting award is not surprising given that his bravura turn as the 'cop with (apparently) no conscience’ – a vulgar racist ('Frog One’) who has 'history’ with his fellow cops – is one of the most unsympathetic, but engaging, that has ever made the big screen and, whilst solid support is provided by the likes of Fernando Rey’s French (heroin-smuggling) 'Mr Big’, Alain Charnier, Tony Lo Bianco’s ‘small-time’ crook, Sal Bocca and Roy Scheider as Doyle’s sidekick, Buddy Russo, it is Hackman’s presence which commands the screen. And that 'screen’ is marshalled to great effect by the dynamic cinematography of Owen Roizman and the editing by (another Oscar winner) Gerald B Greenberg, which gives us some of the greatest (certainly for the time) action sequences in cinema – which, as well as the legendary (manic and grimacing) Doyle car chase under the New York L tracks, also include the great Doyle/Charnier subway pursuit and Doyle’s visceral (verbal) assault on a local drug dealers’ hangout.

Indeed, the entire look and feel of Friedkin’s film is frighteningly authentic – all those big caddies screeching round corners and even a brilliantly nostalgic scene of The Three Degrees doing their thing in a soul nightclub. And this authenticity extends even to the film’s abrupt conclusion as we are presented with the 'sobering’ reality of Popeye’s single-minded pursuit, thereby making Friedkin’s film still appear ground-breaking (for its genre) even today.
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4.0 out of 5 stars for Best Actor, as the hard nosed, 28 Dec. 2014
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Two classic films of their era and genre. The first film won Hackman his first Oscar, for Best Actor, as the hard nosed, tough New York cop, Popeye Doyle. The sequel in my opinion, was a good follow up, with Popeye Doyle this time, hunting the drug lord down in his layer, in Marseille and going to hell and back, in the process of doing it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Intense obsession, 11 May 2014
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These are still excellent films. They do not quite have their original impact but they are still good to watch. Gene Hackman portrayed quirky, unusual personas in those days. These films beautifully illustrate the effects of intense obsession.
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5.0 out of 5 stars ... a real live cop this is one of the better films from USA at that time, 14 Feb. 2015
By 
Maurice C "InulasHelp" (Reading Nr. London UK) - See all my reviews
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Based upon a real live cop this is one of the better films from USA at that time, The chase in the first DVD is very well known and documented and they are exciting to watch . I am happy to have them in my collection.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Both brilliant films, 10 Feb. 2013
Seriously gritty and atmospheric films: both of them are just as good as the other. Like another reviewer, I was completely unaware there was a sequel. However, although it is not as well-known, it is equally as good as the first. Highly recommended
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The French Connection - Says it all really..., 13 Nov. 2009
By 
R. Katbamna (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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Timeless and significant pieces of cinema.

An excellent price for an even heightened product of epic proportions. I love The French Connection which is a safe statement to make as it's a general certainty that the film will forever be etched in history as one of the greatest. However I love THE SEQUEL just a little bit more and feel it is the superior film - either way I can't go wrong and nor can any movie lover.
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5.0 out of 5 stars First class films, 17 Dec. 2014
By 
P. HENRY (UK) - See all my reviews
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Both films were excellent, Gene Hackman is superb as Popeye Doyle and he never gave up getting the man who he was chasing for so long. A truly great film, both of them.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic 70's film made in same time as the Godfather movies, 24 Jun. 2007
These 2 films have a close parallel to the two Godfather films made in the same time. If Godfather I and II made superstars out of Pacino, De Niro and Robert Duvall; French Connection on the other hand propelled Gene Hackman into the big league.

The 70's rarely pulled punches when it came to top billed cop movies, starting with Dirty Harry, the original French Connection and snowballing into classics like Serpico, French Connection II is no exception. This movie won't disappoint any fan of either the original, or anyone that wanted to see for themselves Gene Hackman carrying a lead action role almost through the screen.Gene Hackman as Jimmy 'Popeye' Doyle and Roy Scheider as Buddy 'Cloudy' Russo are great as the two detectives chasing and following a couple of people including Alain Charnier (Fernando Rey) and Salvatore Boca (Tony Lo Bianco)

Hackman plays Popeye Doyle as if it were him really. Every emotion doesn't seem to be acted;it seems real !
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