Casque D'Or was based on the true-life Leca-Manda scandal, wherein an otherwise decent man was guillotined for shooting down a gangster boss in broad daylight. Simone Signoret’s intelligent, pleasingly porcine face is photographed with light-infused romanticism, but a knife fight in agonizing close-up smacks nearly of exploitation. Casque d'or. As he does with the majority of his nuanced noir offerings, Becker plays with shadows and light all throughout Casque D'Or, from the most obvious uses of radiance (for the glimmer surrounding Marie and Manda) to the most restrained and delicate (the pre-dawn prison courtyard, preparing for the guillotine). Jacques Becker lovingly evokes the belle epoque Parisian demimonde in this classic tale of doomed romance. CASQUE D’OR. With poignant, nuanced performances and sensuous black-and-white photography, Casque d’or (Golden Marie) is Becker at the height of his cinematic powers—a romantic masterpiece. Produced by Paris Film Production, Speva Films. * New, restored high-definition digital transfer * Audio commentary by film scholar Peter Cowie * 1995 video interview with actor Serge Reggiani Yet, oddly enough, Mon. Along with Touchez pas au grisbi and Le Trou, Casque d’or is now widely recognized as the summit of Jacques Becker’s achievement as a filmmaker, a distillation of everything that’s most personal and central to his vision. France | 1952 | Jacques Becker This rarely shown Jacques Becker masterpiece was recently voted one of the 100 best movies of all time in a poll of French film critics and historians conducted by Cahiers du Cinéma magazine. A Feature film by Jacques Becker. In the middle of these he made Casque d'or (1952), a tragic romance set during the Belle Époque and loosely based on a true story among the criminal gangs of the Parisian underworld. Release in France : 13/03/1952. Marie (Simone Signoret), a woman of considerable beauty, is distressed at her treatment by Roland, a criminal who is a part of a local syndicate. Since the scandal was common knowledge in France, the downbeat ending of this film was hardly unexpected but still extremely moving. Becker paces Casque d’or deliberately, confidently straddling the line between slow and too slow. He captures u-turn moods, yet they never play as jarring. Synopsis. A melancholic period melodrama, it initially appears to come from an earlier era, untainted by the cynacism and bitterness that poisoned the French psyche during the years of Nazi Occupation. When gangster's moll Marie (Simone Signoret) falls for reformed criminal Manda (Serge Reggiani), their passion incites an underworld rivalry that leads inexorably to treachery and tragedy. The film was not well-received at its initial appearance, but following acclaim abroad it became one of Becker… Casque d'or, Becker's best-known work, could not be more different from these two films. Released in 1952 and 1954 to little fanfare, Jacques Becker's idiosyncratic crime films Casque D'Or and Touchez Pas Au Grisbi are like a reverse image of the gritty hood melodramas made in Warner Brothers' heyday. Becker appears to use this Sontagian approach in "Casque d'Or" by imposing, rightly or wrongly, contemporary behavior of the 1950s onto his characters living in the early 1900s, a period-piece for the uninitiated, as it were.
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