Le Cercle Rouge ★★★½

EUROPEAN CINEMA #1
FRANCE 🇫🇷: My first ever dip into Melville’s filmography and I’m impressed, the visual storytelling of this film is masterful. There’s long pauses of silence throughout the film, most notably in the 20 minute breathtaking heist sequence, but these pauses for the most part are never dead space but are charged with tension.  The film disregards many clichés of the Heist genre, notably excluding the planning sequence as well as the success of the burglars, or a mistake within the heist that they crew have to overcome (a trope found in Oceans Eleven) which kept me more dramatically engaged.  My only real complaint is the dropped or undeveloped subplots which littered the first and second acts (the female love interest, the ex cops mental torture and hallucinations, and Vogel’s temperament) as a result I didn’t get much thematic richness from the film, which is excusable as its so damn cool.