Le Petit Lieutenant (2006)
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Critic Reviews for Le Petit Lieutenant
A quiet powerhouse of a film, an implacable, uncompromising French police drama, both old-fashioned and modern, that underlines the reasons impeccably made crime stories do so well on-screen.
Le Petit Lieutenant shows how good French movies can be when they stay French and don't try to go international.
... you can sense Baye's struggling within the limits imposed on her.
The film's plot, revolving around a murder investigation that turns nasty, ticks along smoothly and efficiently. But it's ultimately more of a character drama, and a reminder that great acting often has little to do with words.
Audience Reviews for Le Petit Lieutenant
It's March! :fresh:
[font=Century Gothic]"Le Petit Lieutenant" starts out with Antoine Derouere(Jalil Lespert) graduating from the police academy and chooses as his first assignment the detective squad in Paris, much to the consternation of his young wife, who does not want to leave her teaching job in Le Havre. In Paris, Antoine is assigned to the Crime Unit under Commander Caroline Vaudieu(Nathalie Baye), a recovering alcoholic, two years sober, and only now returning to active duty. Things settle into a routine after a while for Antoine until a body turns up in the canal who turns out to be a drunk Antoine helped process a short time before.[/font]
[font=Century Gothic]"Le Petit Lieutenant" is an absorbing police procedural that is more interested in character than in mystery.(It also explores the themes of prisons and racism.) This is a subdued movie that is layered in details about people going about their jobs on a daily basis.(While the policemen in this film may worship the violence of American films, the reality is most often quite different.) It avoids expectations throughout and only during one critical sequence does it telegraph its punches.[/font]
Strikingly real French cop drama. Beauvois simply goes about telling his story and developing his characters with no Hollywood "tricks". Thankfully, the story is damn good and the characters are intriguing, which makes the events that unfold all the more powerful.
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