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      Clean Slate

      Released Dec 20, 1982 2h 9m Comedy List
      86% Tomatometer 7 Reviews 83% Audience Score 1,000+ Ratings Hapless Lucien Cordier (Philippe Noiret) is the beleaguered police chief of a small town in French colonial Senegal. The local criminals openly mock Lucien's inability to put a stop to their illegal enterprises, and his unfaithful and shrewish wife Huguette (Stéphane Audran) is having a blatant affair with Nono (Eddy Mitchell), whom Lucien believes is her brother. When the humiliations finally become too much for him to bear, Lucien takes matters into his own hands. Read More Read Less Watch on Max Stream Now

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      Clean Slate

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      Critics Reviews

      View All (7) Critics Reviews
      Roger Ebert Chicago Sun-Times This movie never quite breathes. It's an exercise. You can admire an exercise, but it's hard to really care about one. Rated: 2.5/4 Oct 23, 2004 Full Review Neely Swanson Easy Reader (California) “Coup de Torchon” is one of the most devastatingly sly, raw and brilliant indictments of man’s inhumanity to  man as viewed through a colonial prism. Jan 1, 2024 Full Review Emanuel Levy EmanuelLevy.Com Shifting the locale of Jim Thompson's novel to Colonial Africa, Tavernier has made a compelling, well acted film. Rated: B+ Jun 10, 2011 Full Review Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat Spirituality & Practice Clean Slate is a compelling offbeat morality play. Feb 4, 2004 Full Review Philip Martin Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Rated: 3/5 Jul 31, 2002 Full Review Jeremy Heilman MovieMartyr.com It's often hilarious. It's just that that humor is so mordant that it's sometimes hard to accept. Rated: 3.5/4 Jul 16, 2002 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

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      S R Saw it for its interesting premise and its ratings, but was let down with the lack of purpose. It remained aloof of the local culture despite their being so integrated. Instead it focused on its contrived plot that did not resonate. It does have good moments, but I don't plan to see it again. It was on HBO. Rated 2 out of 5 stars 04/04/23 Full Review william k This adaptation of a Jim Thompson novel is a very dark satirical drama, full of black humor, masterfully directed in an African setting, with a remarkable performance by Noiret amidst a likewise great cast. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review steve m Jim Thompson darkness done as French farce. Really doesn't work but it's fun watching them try. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member One of the finest French films of the 1980s. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 02/06/23 Full Review Audience Member Sun-baked neo-noir, based on a novel by Jim Thompson (Pop. 1280), and directed by Bertrand Tavernier who transposed it from the U. S. South to a French colony in western Africa in the 1930s. Philippe Noiret plays the local cop who, at first, seems none too bright, preferring to give in to get along, rarely arresting anyone and letting those in power kick him around (including his wife and her n'er do well brother). So, when he starts putting his plan for revenge into effect - or maybe he just cracks, it's hard to tell - this viewer wasn't quite sure what was happening. But slowly and surely, the rude and the mighty get offed and Noiret finds himself bedding the young Isabelle Huppert, more or less oblivious to what the town might think. Perhaps his lazy manner provides the perfect cover because no one seems too troubled by the deaths, perhaps, indeed, he did the town a favour... In the end, Coup de Torchon is more of a character study and a snapshot of colonialism gone bad than a tightly plotted film noir, but its looseness and indirect approach is definitely part of its appeal. Rated 4 out of 5 stars 02/04/23 Full Review Audience Member I tried this film on a whim because it was Criterion Collection and I like French films, and I am glad I did as I loved it. I went in cold, I knew nothing about the film other than it was directed by Bertrand Tavernier. I was happy to discover that it starred Philippe Noiret and Isabelle Huppert. I was surprised by the tone of the film, part film-noir, black comedy, thriller, it is all over the place and all the better for it. The script is great, as is the direction, the score is unique and offbeat and the cinematography amazing. Seek this film out! Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars 02/06/23 Full Review Read all reviews
      Clean Slate

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      Cast & Crew

      83% 78% Menage 100% 78% Reuben, Reuben 60% 61% Bustin' Loose 94% 84% Pauline at the Beach 83% 75% Get Out Your Handkerchiefs TRAILER for Get Out Your Handkerchiefs Discover more movies and TV shows. View More

      Movie Info

      Synopsis Hapless Lucien Cordier (Philippe Noiret) is the beleaguered police chief of a small town in French colonial Senegal. The local criminals openly mock Lucien's inability to put a stop to their illegal enterprises, and his unfaithful and shrewish wife Huguette (Stéphane Audran) is having a blatant affair with Nono (Eddy Mitchell), whom Lucien believes is her brother. When the humiliations finally become too much for him to bear, Lucien takes matters into his own hands.
      Director
      Bertrand Tavernier
      Producer
      Henri Lassa, Adolphe Viezzi
      Screenwriter
      Bertrand Tavernier, Jean Aurenche
      Distributor
      Biograph International
      Genre
      Comedy
      Original Language
      French (France)
      Release Date (Theaters)
      Dec 20, 1982, Original
      Release Date (DVD)
      Mar 13, 2001
      Box Office (Gross USA)
      $10.0K
      Runtime
      2h 9m
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