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The Day Of The Jackal [DVD] [2010] [2003]

4.7 out of 5 stars 221 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Edward Fox, Terence Alexander, Michel Auclair, Alan Badel, Tony Britton
  • Directors: Fred Zinnemann
  • Writers: Frederick Forsyth, Kenneth Ross
  • Producers: David Deutsch, John Woolf, Julien Derode
  • Format: Subtitled, PAL
  • Language: English, French, Italian, Spanish
  • Subtitles: English, German, French, Portuguese, Swedish, Turkish, Danish, Hungarian, Polish, Dutch, Finnish, Czech, Greek, Bulgarian
  • Dubbed: German
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Universal Pictures UK
  • DVD Release Date: 5 July 2010
  • Run Time: 137 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (221 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005225B
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,166 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

World-class assassin 'The Jackal' (Edward Fox) is hired by the right-wing OAS to kill France's President De Gaulle. Meanwhile, French police investigator Lebel (Michael Lonsdale) learns of the Jackal from an informer and attempts to piece together the clues to the his identity before it is too late. Directed by Fred Zinnemann, this screen version of Frederick Forsyth's bestseller describes the assassin's preparations and the detective's investigations in precise, methodical detail.

From Amazon.co.uk

With its high-intensity plot about an attempt to assassinate French President Charles de Gaulle, the bestselling novel by Frederick Forsyth was a prime candidate for screen adaptation. Director Fred Zinnemann brought his veteran skills to bear on what has become a timeless classic of screen suspense. Not to be confused with the later remake The Jackal starring Bruce Willis (which shamelessly embraced all the bombast that Zinnemann so wisely avoided), this 1973 thriller opts for lethal elegance and low-key tenacity in the form of the Jackal, the suave assassin played with consummate British coolness by Edward Fox. He's a killer of the highest order, a master of disguise and international elusiveness, and this riveting film follows his path to de Gaulle with an intense, straightforward documentary style. Perhaps one of the last great films from a bygone age of pure, down-to-basics suspense (and a kind of debonair European alternative to the American grittiness of The French Connection), The Day of the Jackal is a cat-and-mouse thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat until its brilliantly executed final scene (pardon the pun), by which time Fox has achieved cinematic immortality as one of the screen's most memorable killers. --Jeff Shannon --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
I have just looked at the Day of the Jackal for the umpententh time and it never fails to impress. Edward Fox plays the lead role expertly as the assasain in this outstanding thriller from the pages of Fredrick Forseyth's novel. I thought the book was outstanding but the film portrays the story brilliantly. An edge of your seat experience and one in which you will not be dissapointed.
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Format: VHS Tape
Think of the problem here in terms of suspense: "The Day of the Jackal" is the story of meticulous hitman (Edward Fox) who is hired by disgruntled French generals to assassinate French President Charles de Gaulle. But we all know that de Gaulle was NOT assassinated, so how does this film achieve suspense? The answer is: extremely well. This is a superior thriller from the novel by Frederick Forsyth and directed by Fred Zinnemann ("High Noon"), who gives equal weight to the professional preparations of the assassin and the dogged efforts of the French detectives to run down the "Jackal." The audience is placed in the position of actually rooting for both sides as the story develops. The excellent cast includes Michel Lonsdale, Delphine Seyrig, Alan Badel, Cyril Cusack and Derek Jacobi. "The Day of the Jackal" offers an unforgettable conclusion in which you come to the moment you thought was impossible, as the Jackal finally gets de Gaulle in his sights.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Having caught this recently on TV in Hi-Def, I decided to add it to my collection. Firstly, addressing the technical aspects of the DVD itself. This is not anamorphic but is presented in letterbox format. The transfer is grainy but perfectly acceptable for a 40 year old film, although there is clearly a Hi-Def transfer now available to broadcasters, if not to retail. The soundtrack is mono and the extras consist only of the theatrical trailer and production notes. Addressing the film itself, this is one of the finest thrillers ever produced, dealing with an attempt on the life of President Charles de Gualle. It is evenly paced and boasts an excellent cast. Edward Fox's minimalist performance as the Jackal is utterly convincing, but for me it's Michel Lonsdale as Deputy Commisioner Claude Lobel, who steals the film.
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By Spike Owen TOP 500 REVIEWER on 12 Feb. 2014
Format: DVD
The Day of the Jackal is directed by Fred Zinnerman and adapted to screenplay by Kenneth Ross from the novel of the same name written by Frederick Forsyth. It stars Edward Fox, Michael Lonsdale, Terence Alexander, Michel Auclair, Alan Badel, Tony Britton and Denis Carey. Music is by Georges Delerue and cinematography by Jean Tournier.

As the French political climate reaches boiling point over the Algeria situation, underground organisation the OAS plot to have President Charles de Gaulle assassinated. When an attempt fails the OAS members not caught are exiled in Vienna and decide that bringing in an outsider to kill the President is the best way forward now. That outsider is an Englishman, code name The Jackal, a methodically cunning and deadly assassin…

Wonderful, the kind of character driven thriller that has become in short supply over the decades. It’s all so simple, even sedate, yet this calm approach serves the plotting perfectly. After the initial set ups we follow The Jackal (a super icy turn by Fox) on his mission to kill General de Gaul. His planning, the people he meets, the people he has to kill to stay one step ahead of the authorities. From cons to weapon smuggling, to disguises and sexual encounters, it’s thoroughly compelling from Jackal’s story arc alone, but the frequent shifts to the hunt for him by a whole ream of suits and detectives is also fascinating viewing.

Backing Fox up is a raft quality performers, a cast very much in tune with the material to hand. Delure’s musical composition is purposely of the minimalist breed, Tournier’s photography is period compliant and smooth, while Ralph Kemplen’s excellent editing was rightly nominated for an Academy Award.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
That we know de Gaulle was not assassinated makes Zinneman's achievement all the more remarkable. This is a film crafted with genius.
He's taken Frederick Forsyth's fine thriller and improved upon it in almost every particular. The plot is more logical, the pace tighter; the characters retain their intense and personal distance (essential for the plot), but are somehow far more human and calculating, and the suspense is palpable.
There have been many cat-and-mouse stories of the detective tracing the criminal, but none so effective. Just to appreciate how good the original is at the art of film-making, compare it to the dire American remake starring Bruce Willis and Richard Gere.
The directorial techniques used are stunningly effective: freeze frame highlights key moments. Silence is used to stunning effect, particularly at the climax which creeps upon the viewer without being signposted by creepy music - big improvement that other directors could do well to note.
The cool ruthlessness of the Jackal is beautifully drawn out by Edward Fox, using the meticulous planning process to tune his character's determination to suceed in the assassination.
By contrast, Michael Lonsdale's detective, burdened by the awesome responsibility of saving France, applies to the task with dogged and passionate determination. That he succeeds is not enough for his own satisfaction - he does not know his enemy, and never really knew who he was chasing.
This film has consistently stayed in my personal top 10 of all time since way back when. DotJ has been accused of being emotionally cold and lacking human warmth, but it strikes exactly the right balance between steely realism and hypothetical retelling of history - one reason why the remake is hokum by comparison!
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