A Shadow Is Haunting the World: International Noir
New Restoration

The closest thing to a perfect movie that I have ever seen.”

John Woo

Existential, austere, and eternally cool, Jean-Pierre Melville’s neo-noir masterpiece Le samouraï is, for many, the defining Melville film. Alain Delon is Jef Costello, a laconic, fedora-capped contract killer who abides by the code of the bushido. After a meticulously plotted hit on a club owner leaves behind eyewitnesses, Jef is pegged as the perp by a tenacious cop, but walks thanks to an ironclad alibi. The assassin’s anonymous employer, meanwhile, determines he’s too great a liability to live. Delon, already an arthouse staple (and heartthrob) for roles in classics by René Clément, Luchino Visconti, and Michelangelo Antonioni, cemented his celebrity with this iconic performance. The affectless anti-heroes of films by John Woo, Jim Jarmusch, Nicolas Winding Refn, and David Fincher, among others, owe Le samouraï an enormous debt.

In French with English subtitles

Delon became here that rare thing: a movie totem, not an actor or character but a temple god in our communal consciousness.”

Michael Atkinson, The Village Voice

“[Melville] helped develop modern film noir … The movie teaches us how action is the enemy of suspense … Better to wait for a whole movie for something to happen than to sit through a film where things we don’t care about are happening constantly.”

Roger Ebert

Upcoming in this Series

  • Le Samourai 5
  • Le samouraï
  • France/Italy1967
  • Jean-Pierre Melville
  • 105 DCP
  • PG
  • International Noir
  • Third Man 1
  • The Third Man
  • United Kingdom1949
  • Carol Reed
  • 104 DCP
  • G
  • International Noir
  • My Heart Is That Eternal Rose 1
  • My Heart Is That Eternal Rose
  • 殺手蝴蝶夢
  • Hong Kong1989
  • Patrick Tam
  • 90 DCP
  • 18A
  • International Noir
  • Victims Of Sin 2
  • Victims of Sin
  • Víctimas del Pecado
  • Mexico1951
  • Emilio Fernández
  • 84 DCP
  • PG
  • International Noir
  • Neige 3
  • Neige
  • France1981
  • Juliet Berto, Jean-Henri Roger
  • 90 DCP
  • NR
  • International Noir