|Directed by||Louis Malle|
|Produced by||Louis Malle
|Screenplay by||Louis Malle
|Music by||Django Reinhardt|
|Cinematography||Tonino Delli Colli|
|Editing by||Suzanne Baron|
|Studio||Nouvelles Éditions de Films
Universal Pictures France
|Distributed by||Cinema International Corporation
20th Century Fox
|Running time||138 minutes|
Lacombe Lucien (in English, Lacombe, Lucien) is a 1974 French film that tells the story of a teenage boy during the German occupation of France in World War II. It is based in part on director Louis Malle's own experiences.
In 1944 Lucien Lacombe, a young peasant in the Lot region is refused permission to join the French Resistance. Instead, the opposing "French Gestapo" obtain from him information about an underground leader and recruit him into their organization.
Lucien enjoys his power and inclusion as a member of the German Police Milice française but soon falls in love with a Jewish girl. Forcing himself upon her family, Lucien becomes personally involved with the very people some of his collaborators and superiors are, in part, employed to oppress.
- Pierre Blaise as Lucien Lacombe
- Aurore Clément as France Horn
- Therese Giehse as Bella Horn
- Holger Löwenadler as Albert Horn
- Stéphane Bouy as Jean-Bernard
- Loumi Iacobesco as Betty Beaulieu
- René Bouloc as Faure
- Pierre Decazes as Aubert
- Jean Rougerie as Tonin, the chief of police
- Cécile Ricard as Marie, the hotel maid
- Jacqueline Staup as Lucienne Chauvelot
- Ave Ninchi as Mme Georges
- Pierre Saintons as Hippolyte, the black collaborator
- Gilberte Rivet as Lucien's mother
- Jacques Rispal as M. Laborit, le propriétaire
Originally, the script was entitled Le faucon ("The Falcon") and was supposed to be set in present-day Mexico. However, Malle was not allowed to shoot in Mexico (nor in Chile), so he was forced to rewrite the script, giving it a wartime French setting. The script was then retitled Le milicien.
Vincent Canby, film critic for The New York Times, liked the film and gave it a positive review. He wrote, "Lacombe, Lucien is easily Mr. Malle's most ambitious, most provocative film, and if it is not as immediately affecting as The Fire Within or even the comic Murmur of the Heart, it's because—to make his point—he has centered it on a character who must remain forever mysterious, forever beyond our sympathy."
Film critic Dan Schneider liked the film especially the casting of new actor Pierre Blaise by Louis Malle. He wrote, "Every so often a director makes an inspiring casting choice to not hire a real actor for a role, but go with an unknown, an amateur. Perhaps the best example of this was in Vittorio De Sica's 1952 film Umberto D ... Yet, not that far behind has to be Louis Malle's decision to cast the lead character for his 1974 film, Lacombe, Lucien with an amateur named Pierre Blaise. No actor would likely be able to capture the natural ferality that Blaise brings to the role of a none-too-bright French farm boy who unwittingly, at first, becomes an accomplice and collaborator with the Gestapo in the final months of Vichy France, in late 1944."
Film critic Wheeler Winston Dixon discussed why the film was controversial, "Louis Malle's drama Lacombe, Lucien is one of the most effective films about the capitulation of France to the Nazis during World War II, and one of the most controversial ... Louis Malle's film was daring for its time for suggesting that not every member of the French public was a member of the Resistance; that indeed, many were willing accomplices to the Vichy government, and the sting of the film remains to this day."
- National Board of Review: NBR Award, Best Supporting Actor, Holger Löwenadler; 1974.
- British Academy of Film and Television Arts: BAFTA Film Award, Best Film; UN Award; 1975.
- French Syndicate of Cinema Critics: Critics Award, Best Film, Louis Malle; 1975.
- National Society of Film Critics Awards, USA: NSFC Award, Best Supporting Actor, Holger Löwenadler; 1975.
- Academy Awards: Oscar, Best Foreign Language Film, France; 1975.
- British Academy of Film and Television Arts: BAFTA Film Award, Best Direction, Louis Malle; Best Screenplay, Louis Malle and Patrick Modiano; 1975.
- Golden Globes: Golden Globe, Best Foreign Film, France; 1975.
- List of French submissions for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film
- List of submissions to the 47th Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film
- Lacombe Lucien at the Internet Movie Database.
- Canby, Vincent. The New York Times, film review, September 30, 1974. Accessed: August 20, 2013.
- Schneider, Dan. Unlikely 2.0, film review, 2008. Accessed: August 20, 2013.
- Dixon, Wheeler Winston. Allmovie by Rovi, DVD/film review, no date. Accessed: August 20, 2013.
- "The 47th Academy Awards (1975) Nominees and Winners". oscars.org. Retrieved : August 20, 2013.
- Lacombe, Lucien at the Internet Movie Database
- Lacombe, Lucien at allmovie
- Lacombe, Lucien at the TCM Movie Database
- Lacombe, Lucien at Rotten Tomatoes
- Lacombe, Lucien essay by Pauline Kael essay at The Criterion Collection
- Lacombe, Lucien images at EyeGate
- Lacombe, Lucien film trailer at YouTube