Newest Reviews
Letter from Paris
Behind the Mask
Matrix, The
Fried Barry
Once Upon a River
We Still Say Grace
Enfant Terrible
Playboy of the Western World, The
Bike Thief, The
Virtuoso, The
Here are the Young Men
Beast Beast
Labyrinth of Cinema
Justice Society: World War II
Artist's Wife, The
Truman & Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation
Pusher III
Palm Springs
Devil Commands, The
Oak Room, The
Pusher II
Forget Everything and Run
Secrets & Lies
Red Moon Tide
Man with Nine Lives, The
Pot Carriers, The
Black Bear
Don't Cry, Pretty Girls!
Me You Madness
Reckoning, The
Laddie: The Man Behind the Movies
Newest Articles
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
Adelphi Extras: Stars in Your Eyes on Blu-ray
  Farewell Friend A Safe Place
Year: 1968
Director: Jean Herman
Stars: Alain Delon, Charles Bronson, Olga Georges-Picot, Brigitte Fossey, Bernard Fresson, Marianna Falk, Ellen Bahl, Jean-Claude Ballard, Michel Barcet, Raoul Guylad
Genre: ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 2 votes)
Review: Two soldiers, one French, Dino Barran (Alain Delon), the other American, Franz Propp (Charles Bronson), have been discharged from the army today and as they disembark the ship a woman tries to attract Barran's attention. She believes him to be an old friend of her ex-partner, Mozart, who didn't make it back from Algiers, but Barran denies all knowledge, even though he did actually befriend him. This woman, Isabelle Moreau (Olga Georges-Picot) is persistent, and after Barran and Propp have had an altercation over gambling, she catches up with him with a strange proposal: break into a safe and put something back...

Farewell Friend, or Adieu l'ami as it was called in France, teamed up two cult stars in a film which cemented Bronson's reputation as big news in Europe, and at Delon's request they proved a solid team. Indeed, Bronson was at his most relaxed and confident here, probably because he was surrounded by fans of his making the film with him: he laughs a few times and even does an impression of a penguin (no, not Pingu). Although they spend most of the start and the ending apart, the lengthy sequence in the middle is the best section of the film where their characters are forced together by circumstance.

This is a pretty inscrutable little thriller for much of it, and even by the end you have to have a good think to work out who was doing what to whom, but it's this quality which keeps you watching. The idea is that to pay a debt to his friend Mozart, Barran agrees to carry out this safe job by taking a post as a doctor in the company building that the safe is kept in to take care of their staff's medical check-ups. While he does so, he arranges a camera to snap photos of the safe being opened so the combination can be ascertained and the plan carried out.

However, it's not all that smooth, as they only get about half the numbers, so over Christmas Barran agrees to be shut in so he can try out the thousands of possible combinations and open the door to return the bonds he has been given (really). As this is a kind of buddy movie, Propp happens to appear as well, and the two of them get into an arrangement that is antagonistic but grudgingly accepting all the same. Especially when they get trapped in the room with the safe after a brawl, with no food or water and the place not being opened till Tuesday.

The futuristic look to the building lends a cold atmosphere to the film, even when the room Barran and Propp are in heats up and they have to strip to the waist, revealing muscular torsos sheened in sweat (steady). While not one of the greatest of Euro-thrillers, Farewell Friend does enjoy considerable star wattage thanks to the male leads, and there's the bonus of Brigitte Fossey, looking fragile as ever and marking out a film career as an adult as Barran's mousey secretary who he brings out of her shell. There are twists and double crosses, but curiously the tense relationship between the two anti-thieves (for want of a better term) is an unexpectedly noble one, leaving you cheered that these two guys eventually stick up for each other. Idiosycnrasies include Bronson getting a catchprhase that makes him sound as if he's predicting the introduction to the Beastie Boys' "Fight For Your Right To Party", but mainly this is an absorbing though confusing suspense drama that pays off your attention. Music by Fran├žois de Roubaix, but you'll only hear it at the start and ending as one of the quirks is the lack of incidental tunes.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 3203 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf


Last Updated: