Lift to the Scaffold

Film, Drama
Lift to the Scaffold

This first film from French director Louis Malle, who went on to make ‘Les Amants’ and ‘Au Revoir Les Enfants’, is a contained, pulpy crime story from 1958 that plays out over one night in Paris. Julien (Maurice Ronet) has planned the perfect murder: he’ll kill a tycoon and make off with his wife, Florence (Jeanne Moreau). But things go wrong when a young hoodlum steals his car and another parallel murder unfolds instead, while Julien finds himself stuck overnight in a lift. It’s no masterpiece, but it’s slick and tense, and the camerawork has something of the in-the-moment, on-the-ground immediacy of the French New Wave films. The late-night and early-morning shots of Paris, coupled with the improvised Miles Davis score, are reasons enough to catch it.

By: Dave Calhoun

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Release details

Rated: PG
Release date: Friday February 7 2014
Duration: 89 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Louis Malle
Screenwriter: Roger Nimier, Louis Malle
Cast: Maurice Ronet
Elga Andersen
Yori Bertin
Lino Ventura
Jeanne Moreau
Ivan Petrovich
Georges Poujouly

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