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12:30   2:40   7:15*

Saturday, July 8

Directed by William Friedkin

(1971) Traffic problems in Brooklyn, as Gene Hackman’s Popeye Doyle car-chases a killer-bearing B train, after being snookered by Fernando Rey in a cross-midtown shadowing topped by a classic subway door jamming. Multi-Oscared re-creation of a legendary drug bust. DCP. Approx. 104 min.


“1971 was a hell of a year for gritty Big Apple movies… One of the best all-around tours of New York in [the 70s].”
– Jason Bailey, Flavorwire

“Hard-nosed, pork-pie-hatted, vulgar, a tough cop in the latest measure of a fine tradition, [Hackman] exists neither to rise nor to fall, to excite neither pity nor terror—but to function. To function in New York City is its own heroism, and the film recognizes that.”
– The New York Times

“A knockout police thriller with so much jarring excitement that it almost calls for comic-book expletives. POW!, ZOWIE!”
– Jay Cocks

“Solid, slick filmmaking, full of dirty cops, shrewd operators, and slam-bang action.”
– Dave Kehr

“Like an aggravated case of New York.”
– Pauline Kael

“Friedkin’s symphony of long, sharp shocks is memorable for any number of sequences: the cat-and-mouse subway game, the ballbusting bar shakedown, a breakneck chase scene that still seems leagues ahead of greatest-ever competitors.”
– David Fear, Time Out New York

“Fraught with urban decay and racial tension, Friedkin’s bang-bang procedural created a paradigm for the tell-it-like-it-is cop drama… While Dirty Harry provided audiences an anti-establishment legal vigilante, French Connection introduced the notion of the heroic working-class narc. Blue-collar to the bone, Popeye lives in public housing and feeds his face with a rancid-looking slice in the course of a freezing afternoon spent staking out on the Upper East Side boîte where the French smuggler who is about to unload 100 pounds of uncut heroin leisurely consumes a multi-course feast.”
– J. Hoberman, Village Voice

“In a sense, the whole movie is a chase… the smugglers and the law officers are endlessly circling and sniffing each other… Doyle himself is a bad cop, by ordinary standards; he harasses and brutalizes people, he is a racist, he endangers innocent people during the chase scene (which is a high-speed ego trip)… The French Connection is as amoral as its hero, as violent, as obsessed and as frightening.”
– Roger Ebert

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