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Pépé le Moko
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Pépé le Moko

1937
Romance
Drama
1h 34m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 65.46% from 338 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(338)
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Rated 19 Apr 2021
5
93rd
Much has been made of this film's influence on everything from noir to neorealism, but what those typically dire forms failed to take is how utterly nonchalant this cops and robbers tale is. Within minutes Pepe and the gang gun down a gaggle of cops as if nothing ("it's good for the varicose veins"). How amusing, and how tremendously evocative of an exotic locale, the Casbah functioning at once as Pepe's cover and his cage, a labyrinth confounding the colonial forces of authority and tourism.
Rated 14 Aug 2007
90
94th
Excellent film, lots of fun to watch, and obviously influential. Jean Gabin is remarkable in it.
Rated 31 Oct 2021
67
67th
Another amazing movie from Duviver, the dude sure knows how to film
Rated 21 Apr 2021
87
83rd
So much to love here--the brisk pace, the atmosphere of the Casbah, Jean Gabin, and all those shadows. There is also an existential reflection on freedom and captivity, working on both a physical and a relational level. This theme resides mostly below the surface, but it helps to contextualize the ending.
Rated 14 Aug 2007
80
78th
Charming noir (though I guess technically it's pre-noir), Gabin is excellent as the elegant yet conflicted Pepe.
Rated 20 May 2010
5
81st
I love the gang Gabin has together here, wish we could have seen more of them (particularly the mentally deranged one with a smiling habit & man constantly playing cup-and-ball). Not the best I've seen of this stuff, not the worst. Unexpectedly breezy.
Rated 08 Jun 2008
73
36th
As usual Gabin exudes charm with just a tinge of melancholy, but the film around him is merely good. The events and characters are enjoyable enough to watch but the film never really packs a punch until the end, which feels rather forced. I was also disappointed by how many shots were badly focused, which was quite distracting.
Rated 19 Sep 2011
80
91st
Great all-around. Gabin is a badass of a poetic sort.
Rated 02 Mar 2008
73
56th
# 544
Rated 08 Sep 2016
78
58th
Pepe le Moko is famous for being one the earliest noirs, and while it did introduce some of the aesthetics and thematic elements that would be predominant during the following decade, It's not the masterpiece that some claim it to be. As expected for the era, it has overly slow pacing and plagued by casual racism and misogyny, but it does have some great camerawork and it effectively utilizes it's setting for narrative and aesthetic purposes better than most other films do (even to this day).
Rated 20 Nov 2020
84
46th
One of those movies that expects you to respect the protagonist solely because every character constantly talks about how cool he is
Rated 19 Dec 2008
74
48th
517
Rated 27 Aug 2020
50
42nd
Saw it in film class. Didn't really hook me. Maybe I should try it again.
Rated 14 Mar 2023
87
92nd
As usual, Pauline Kael nailed it when she wrote, " "Superb entertainment [...} One of the most compelling of all the fatalistic French screen romances." And it has a special visual magic--the "Casbah" has so much atmosphere that, although you know the sets were constructed in a studio, you just don't care. Jean Gabin is marvelous, and there's a touching cameo by the great chanson singer Fréhel.
Rated 22 Mar 2008
85
88th
Pepe is a most memorable character--and lots of great snappy lines.
Rated 27 Jul 2018
75
58th
Acting and directing are good, and the cinematography is really enjoyable. If you're looking for a crime gangster flick, this might not fit the bill, because not much crime or gangstering happens. I liked the portrayal. The romance is off-putting, though, since behind his charm Pepe is just a womanizing creep (it's really hard not to stereotype the French of the era here, because this is typical), but as symbolism his relationships are effective.
Rated 12 Dec 2009
100
95th
Exquisitely photographed and directed.
Rated 11 Mar 2019
98
97th
98.00
Rated 31 Mar 2007
4
70th
Very fun and romantic, in both senses of the word; the Algiers depicted here is one of the most memorable settings for any movie that I can remember, and Gabin is extremely likable as the Parisian gangster. He's boyish, charming, tough, and a hopeless romantic all at once. It's a lot of fun.
Rated 10 Nov 2019
60
35th
Watched this right after Colonel Blimp, and it was surprising that even the crooks have a moral code of honor here. It's a pretty simple plot that creeps along to its predestined finale; the performances are fine but I would have liked to have seen more of the Casbah (and more "normal" people there) as it too is its own character. Easy to see its influence on future noir and gangster movies.
Rated 26 Jun 2015
4
52nd
one of the most influential early french films, this poetic realist gangster film was apparently a precursor of noir, italian neorealism, and ultimately la nouvelle vague. some good scenes, especially the last 15 minutes or so, but unfortunately it's just not very interesting.
Rated 05 Nov 2008
8
82nd
Visually stunning and obviously important for cinematic history. It's also been remade and ripoffed a hundred times. Pepe is a really memorable character with snappy, witty lines but he did spawn one of the worst cartoon characters ever - Pepe le Pew.
Rated 06 Mar 2010
80
86th
Great photography, great casbah settings and another great Jean Gabin performance highlight this classic.
Rated 16 Jun 2013
83
87th
Captivating story and decent characters.
Rated 06 Feb 2010
65
65th
Good movie, but not the masterpiece it's sometimes credited as. The exotic setting and delicately atmospheric design and photography carry this a long way as an early or proto- film noir. The plot, however, is basically similar to that of 30's American gangster movies except with less action and more dialogue. The conversations are uneven, sometimes interesting and often rather boring. There are a few great scenes.
Rated 15 Jan 2010
71
42nd
579
Rated 15 Jan 2023
84
82nd
Impeccably made, perfectly paced, with a setting that feels like a character in its own right. Gabin is fantastic as the title character, a criminal mastermind hiding in the Casbah in Algiers. This feels noiry at times, and I got some vibes that made me think of Casablanca, though it's a very different movie than that of course. The narrative is well handled. This doesn't have very many flaws--just a great film.
Rated 21 Dec 2013
70
96th
Jean Gabin as Pépé le Moko - a wanted gangster hiding out on the bad side of town. Has a pinch action, but in typical French sense, it's the human charms and the women where the drama really happens. And Gabin's weakness becomes the expressive Mireille Balin. I had hoped for more excitement, for it's a very mellow gangster movie and the tone is gentleman friendly among gutter creatures. But it's also just that which makes it a almost cool variation of the 'crook in hiding' story.
Rated 09 Dec 2009
71
50th
Most intriguing.
Rated 30 Nov 2011
71
42nd
#587
Rated 31 Oct 2021
62
80th
Amazing cinematography and definitely an interesting watch, but the actual story didn't quite convince me.

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