Papillon

Papillon

4.2 5
Director: Franklin J. Schaffner

Cast: Franklin J. Schaffner, Steve McQueen, Dustin Hoffman, Victor Jory

     
 

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The autobiography of Henri Charriere, one of the few people to successfully escape from the notorious French penal colony of Devil's Island, served as the basis for Papillon. Steve McQueen plays the pugnacious Charriere (known as "Papillon," or "butterfly," because of a prominent tatoo), incarcerated--wrongly, he claims--forSee more details below

Overview

The autobiography of Henri Charriere, one of the few people to successfully escape from the notorious French penal colony of Devil's Island, served as the basis for Papillon. Steve McQueen plays the pugnacious Charriere (known as "Papillon," or "butterfly," because of a prominent tatoo), incarcerated--wrongly, he claims--for murdering a pimp. He save the life of fellow convict Louis Dega (Dustin Hoffman), a counterfeiter who will later show his gratitude by helping Charriere in his many escape attempts, and by smuggling food to Charriere when the latter is put in solitary confinement. One breakout, which takes Charriere and Dega to a leper colony and then to a native encampment, is almost successful, but Charriere is betrayed (allegedly because he stopped for an act of kindness) and back the prisoners go to French Guinea. Years later, Dega is made a trustee and is content with his lot, but the ageing, white-haired Charriere cannot be held back. A tribute to the unquenchability of the human spirit, Papillon brought in an impressive $22 million at the box office.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Brian J. Dillard
Although it's overly exhaustive as it catalogues its protagonist's many attempts to regain his freedom, Papillon remains the mother, or at least the master, of all prison-escape flicks. Less of a straight-up procedural than such heirs to the throne as Escape From Alcatraz, the film tempers its unashamedly psychological approach (dream sequences, tests of will, and triumph-of-the-downtrodden hokum) with enough gritty realism (knife fights, guillotines, malaria, and leprous smugglers) to appease those who want their depravity served up extra stark. Escape-film vet Steve McQueen showcases his range both physically and mentally as his character seems to age forward and backward and go in and out of sanity depending on the barbarity of his method of incarceration at any given time. Dustin Hoffman, meanwhile, gets to have it both ways, outrageous vocal and physical tics and subtle psychological shadings, as the rich counterfeiter whose colonic stash of cash finances several of Papillon's attempts to bust out. Viewers may watch the closing credits incredulously, unable to believe that after 150 minutes, director Franklin J. Schaffner still has to resort to a spoken-word epilogue to wrap up loose ends, but for devotees of the genre and fans of McQueen's tough-guy oeuvre, Papillon is worth the investment of time.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/31/2005
UPC:
0012569700970
Original Release:
1973
Rating:
PG
Source:
Warner Home Video
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Wide Screen]
Time:
2:30:00
Sales rank:
2,339

Special Features

Closed Caption; Soundtrack remastered in Dolby Digital 5.1; Vintage featurette The Magnificent Rebel; Theatrical trailer; English and French subtitles

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Steve McQueen Papillon
Dustin Hoffman Dega
Victor Jory Indian Chief
Don Gordon Julot
Anthony Zerbe Leper Colony Chief
Robert Deman Maturette
Dar Robinson McQueen's Cliff Stunt
Ratna Assan Zoraima
Val Avery Pascal
Mills Watson Guard
Ron Soble Santini
E.J. Andre Old Con
Richard Angarola Commandant
Jack Denbo Classification Officer
Len Lesser Guard
John Quade Masked Breton
Fred Sadoff Deputy Warden
Allen Jaffe Turnkey
Liam Dunn Old Trustee
Vic Tayback Sergeant
Woodrow Parfrey Clusiot
Bill Mumy Lariot
George Coulouris Dr. Chatal
William Smithers Warden Barrot
Gregory Sierra Antonio
Barbara Morrison Mother Superior
Ellen Moss Nun
Don Hanmer Butterfly Trader
Dalton Trumbo Commandant
Jim Malinda Guard
Billy Greene Actor
Harry Monty Actor

Technical Credits
Franklin J. Schaffner Director,Producer
Derek Ball Sound/Sound Designer
Jack Baur Casting
John Courtland Camera Operator
Robert Dorfmann Producer
Emmett Emerson Production Manager
Jerry Goldsmith Score Composer
Fred Koenekamp Cinematographer
Tony Masters Production Designer
Jack Maxsted Art Director
Richard Portman Sound/Sound Designer
Anthony Powell Costumes/Costume Designer
Ted Richmond Executive Producer
José Lopez Rodero Asst. Director
Juan Carlos Lopez Rodero Asst. Director
Hugh Scaife Set Decoration/Design
Charles Schram Makeup
Lorenzo Semple Screenwriter
Robert Swink Editor
Dalton Trumbo Screenwriter
Alex C. Weldon Special Effects

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. France Disposes [3:53]
2. Ship Confidences [4:22]
3. Protection Offer [2:10]
4. Closer to the Heat [4:52]
5. Attempt on Dega [1:34]
6. Arrival at Cayenne [5:15]
7. March to Prison [3:25]
8. Dealmaking/Death [4:36]
9. Croc in Kilo '40 [4:44]
10. Butterfly Hunters [5:33]
11. First Escape [3:16]
12. A New Experience [1:57]
13. Solitary [5:31]
14. Give and Take [5:16]
15. Guilty [1:47]
16. Half-rations [8:54]
17. "You're Dead" [2:04]
18. Term Completed [3:00]
19. What He Wants [5:18]
20. Very Great Favor [3:16]
21. Pact With Killer [3:05]
22. "You They Own" [2:02]
23. The Escape [6:48]
24. Broken Boat/Leg [2:57]
25. Masked Rescuer [1:58]
26. Bargain for Boat [4:40]
27. Money for Journey [1:42]
28. Rough Seas [3:18]
29. Hostile Reception [3:24]
30. Prey for Islanders [3:32]
31. Butterfly's Mark [8:20]
32. Watches/Betrays [4:10]
33. Debts Paid [3:25]
34. Devil's Island [3:36]
35. The Only Ones Left [2:28]
36. An Escape Idea [3:29]
37. The Experiment [4:00]
38. Taking the Plunge [3:05]
39. Coda/End Credits [3:37]

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