Le Jour Se Lve review

Daybreak returns...

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“A man has killed another. Now, barricaded in his room, he recallsthe circumstances that led him to murder.” Thus begins Marcel Carné’s masterpiece of French poetic realism, a doomed tale of obsessive love whose innovative use of flashback was much copied – not least by The Long Night (1947), an inferior reprise whose makers then tried to have all prints of the original flick destroyed.

The film survived that disaster, and an earlier ban during the Nazi occupation of France in WW2; fully restored (including scenes previously cut), it packs a greater punch than ever, not least for Jean Gabin’s agonised anti-hero François.

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Freelance Writer

Neil Smith is a freelance film critic who has written for several publications, including Total Film. His bylines can be found at the BBC, Film 4 Independent, Uncut Magazine, SFX Magazine, Heat Magazine, Popcorn, and more.