Papillon (1973)

Two men on their way to a notorious 1930s prison on one of the French Guinea islands become friends. They have to help each other in order to survive and stay sane in this cruel environment of the work camps.

papillon12Because it was shot in remote locations it was one of the most expensive films made at the time. Twelve million dollars may not sound much today for such a great film,but at the time it was a lot of money. As a matter a fact it was enough to get Steve McQueen, one of the biggest names in the industry at the time to play the main role alongside Dustin Hoffman. The duo shows great chemistry in working together with Hoffman playing a goofy but smart man and McQueen playing a tough, determined character with a seemingly unbreakable will to escape. This combination of their personalities proved to be very entertaining for the viewer and sometimes even a comic relief to light up the very dark and serious tone of the film.


The main theme is their struggle to escape set amongst scenes of terrible treatment of prisoners at the time and the fact that such awful prisons were built on beautiful islands which could otherwise be true heaven on earth. With its great story of desperation and happiness so close together this prison break film will be remembered for as long as the desire for freedom exists.


Napisao: Frano Pahor