Adieu l'ami

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Adieu l'ami
Adieu l'ami Cover.jpg
Adieu l'ami Cover
Directed by Jean Herman
Produced by Serge Silberman
Written by Sébastien Japrisot
Starring
Music by Françoise de Roubaix
Cinematography Jean-Jacques Tarbės
Edited by
Distributed by
  • Greenwich Film Production
  • Medusa Distribuzione
Release dates
1968 (France_
1973 (US)
Running time
95 minutes
Country
  • France
  • Italy
Language French
Box office 2,639,716 admissions (France)[1] (est. $6 million[2]

Adieu l’ami (Farewell Friend) is a 1968 French-Italian film directed by Jean Herman; producer Serge Silberman, screenplay by Sebastien Japrisot.[3] The film was released in the United States in 1973 under the title "Honor Among Thieves", that version of which is available on DVD from Lionsgate.[4] [5]

The film was a big success in Europe and was crucial to Charles Bronson's career, making him a star over there, after being pigeon holed as a supporting actor in Hollywood.[6][7]

Plot summary[edit]

Demobilised after the war in Algeria, legionnaire Franz Propp tries to get army doctor Dino Barran to go to the Congo with him. But Barran feels he has to help the beautiful Isabelle Moreau, whose lover he accidentally killed in Algeria. She wants him to take a job in a big firm in Paris, where his assistant will be an attractive girl called Dominique Austerlitz, and over the Christmas break to secretly return some missing documents to the safe.

Propp, who has found work as a pimp, follows Barran into the building and overhears that there are also millions in wages in the safe. He wants the money, while Barran merely wants to fulfil his promise to Isabelle. After much arguing and fighting the two unwillingly co-operate and get the safe open, to find the money has been taken. They also find they are locked in the strong room with no light, air, food or drink. Escaping eventually through a shaft, they find a security guard shot dead. Successfully getting out of the building, they try to get onto a flight at the airport but Propp is caught by the police. Despite intensive interrogation, he never talks.

Barran meanwhile, who has persuaded Dominique to shelter him, offers to talk to the police. They follow him to the scene of the crime, where Dominique is to look for evidence of his innocence, when Isabelle appears with a gun. In a fracas she shoots a policeman, whereupon both girls are killed by a police machine gun. It was the two of them who had taken the money, killed the guard, and tricked Barran into being their fall guy.

Cast and roles[edit]

Production[edit]

Alain Delon was looking for an American actor to play his co-star in the film. He admired Bronson's acting, particularly in movies like Machine Gun Kelly and had the producer approach him when Bronson was in Europe making Villa Rides. Bronson's agent Paul Kohner later recalled:

Silberman pitched Bronson on the fact that in the American film industry all the money, all the publicity, goes to the pretty boy hero types. In Europe, he told him, the public is attracted by character, not face. Bronson had always resisted doing European films before... This time he was only half convinced by Silberman's arguments, but I made the deal for him to do Adieu l'ami.[2]

Bronson was signed in December 1967. The film was shot in Marseilles and Paris.[8]

Releases[edit]

Europe[edit]

The film was a massive hit in France, earning around $6 million at the box office. Bronson went on to star in a series of European made movies that were hugely popular, including Once Upon a Time in the West and Rider on the Rain.[2]

US[edit]

Paramount had distribution rights to the film in the US but it was not released there until 1973. The Los Angeles Times called it "overly contrived, overlong, uninspired - and unrelentingly tedious."[9]

DVD[edit]

Under the HONOR AMONG THIEVES title, it was released on VHS by Monterey Home Video in the '80's. Lionsgate, via license from StudioCanal, rereleased it on DVD in 2008. Wild East released it under the original FAREWELL FRIEND title on a limited edition R0 NTSC DVD alongside Rider on the Rain, also starring Charles Bronson, in 2011.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Box office information for film accessed 14 December 2014
  2. ^ a b c America discovers a 'sacred monster': Bronson looks as if at any moment he's about to hit someone Bronson 'Charlie Bronson really is a guy with a lot of humor and a lot of tenderness, both of which he hides.' By Bill DavidsonRobert Mitchum. New York Times (1923-Current file) [New York, N.Y] 22 Sep 1974: 260.
  3. ^ "Adieu l'Ami". unifrance.org. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  4. ^ "Honor Among Thieves (1968) ". www.allrovi.com. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  5. ^ "Adieu l'ami (Farewell, Friend) (Honor Among Thieves) (1968) ". www.rottentomatoes.com. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  6. ^ REX REED REPORTS: Don't page Bronson now--unless you have a million Reed, Rex. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file) [Chicago, Ill] 23 July 1972: j7.
  7. ^ Bronson Stars in Europe Knapp, Dan. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 04 Sep 1971: a8.
  8. ^ MOVIE CALL SHEET: Wolper, Wood Buy Story Martin, Betty. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 29 Dec 1967: c15.
  9. ^ MOVIE REVIEW: A Heist Film Off the Shelf Thomas, Kevin. Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File) [Los Angeles, Calif] 16 Aug 1973: e11.