Purple Noon (Plein soleil) (1996)
René Clément's thriller Purple Noon stars Alain Delon as Tom Ripley, an American who travels to Europe on an all-expenses-paid mission to convince his friend, the errant playboy Philippe Greenleaf (Maurice Ronet), to travel to San Francisco at the request of the wealthy Greenleaf family. Initially, the pair enjoy the good life in Italy, often to the anger and dismay of Philippe's much put-upon fiancee Marge (Marie Laforet). However, as Tom's funds begin to run dry, it becomes more and more apparent that Philippe has no intentions of returning to the U.S., forcing Tom to consider more nefarious means of maintaining his extravagant lifestyle. Purple Noon is adapted from Patricia Highsmith's novel The Talented Mr. Ripley, and like Alfred Hitchcock's classic Strangers on a Train, also based on Highsmith's work, the theme of identity transference is dominant. The subject even extends to the homoerotic undercurrents which simmer below the surface of Tom and Philippe's relationship, setting into motion a love/hate tension which explodes during a high seas journey. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi … More
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Critic Reviews for Purple Noon (Plein soleil)
It's Delon -- impossibly beautiful, impossible to read, cold, cool -- who steals the film.
Rene Clement's subversive direction makes us root for Delon to pull off a tricky tightrope disguise as suspicious police pursue him from hotel to apartment and town to town.
Its mechanical aesthetic suggests that rather than having to sublimate what remorse Tom Ripley might feel toward his actions, he simply doesn't experience any.
This expertly made film is utterly mesmerising. And its exploration of ruthless ambition is still fiercely timely.
Alain Delon excels as gentleman psychopath Tom Ripley in René Clément's beautifully restored classic.
Delon is a terrifically good in the role: his almost unearthly perfection is creepy itself, as if he is imitating a human being.
Highsmith had some doubts about the ending, which feels less daring than the one in her book, but there's a clever irony to it Hitchcock would have appreciated.
Tempering Hitchcockian intent with the experimentalism of the French New Wave, the result is as seductive as it is suspenseful: a bracing study of amorality.
Condemned now to exist in the shadow of a talented impersonator, this earlier adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's remarkable novel has been all too readily overlooked, despite possessing considerable charms of its own.
Plein Soleil remains a masterpiece. It defined the career of its director, who became known as the French Hitchcock.
Clément's strategy is to film Ripley's actions with little editorializing and the film is both laid-back and taut at the same time, especially in the second half of the film as the stakes get higher and it becomes more of a thriller.
Having just discovered its existence, I was interested to see this 1960 French adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's novel which Anthony Minghella also adapted in 1999, as The Talented Mr Ripley
The sinister occurs within the confines of the beautiful, like a disease eating away a beautiful tree from the inside.
A gem of a psychological thriller, with Alain Delon and Marie Laforet in top form, Rene Clement's French version of Patricia Highsmith's noir novel is far superior to Minghella's 1999 remake.
'Talented Mr. Ripley' with a French accent; stylish and memorable
Alain Delon, in his third film, gives a staggering chilly performance as the psychopathic killer.
A fascinating earlier version of 'The Talented Mr. Ripley' that features a much different murderous protagonist.
Tom isn't your average Hitchcock hero, he has the advantage of being a sociopath
Audience Reviews for Purple Noon (Plein soleil)
Good thriller, ala Alain Delon. Beautiful Italian scenery. Wonderfully ironic finale. Hollywood, please stop remaking good, classic films into mediocre, homogeonized ones.More
Tom Ripley, played by Alain Delon, is an intelligent, handsome, cold-blooded indentity-stealer, and nothing more. We are witnesses to his quiet endeavors and his restless cruelty. Rene Clement delivers no sentimentalism, no deep introspections into the cause of Ripley's psychopathic instincts (as opposed to the other very good adaptation by Anthony Minghella), just plain flawless development of a crime. Marie Laforet is lovely as the beautiful angst-ridden Marge. Not only is this movie a great thriller, but the vibrant photography and the beautiful Italian landscapes are enrapturing, and perhaps worth the view by themselves. It's classic suspense at its finest.More
an interesting french thriller based on patricia highsmith's book 'the talented mr. ripley'. released in 1960, it's fun for fans of the american version. the ending is quite different among other things. and how can alain delon be so cold and so hot simultaneously? lolMore
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