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In the years since his Academy Award-winning performance in Michel Hazanavicius' The Artist, actor Jean Dujardin has had the opportunity to work with some brilliant American filmmakers - including Martin Scorsese and George Clooney. He has not left behind his roots, however, and his next big release comes from his native home in France. This film is The Connection, and you can watch its badass red band trailer below:
Based on a true story, The Connection centers on Pierre Michel (Jean Dujardin), a French investigator who worked to dismantle the notorious drug smuggling operation known as The French Connection back in the 1970s. Along with his task force of expertly trained police officers, he sets his sights on taking down Gatean "Tany" Zampa (Gilles Lellouche), the kingpin of the operation. As precisely planned and executed as Michel's strikes are, the heroin-dealing criminal is constantly able to evade his grasp. The film's French cast also includes Mélanie Doutey as Christiane Zampa, and Benoît Magimel.
The violence and brutality of certain moments in this trailer have their impact, but it's also hard not to appreciate its aesthetics. Director Cédric Jimenez seems to have an appreciation for long-flowing tracking shots, either moving the camera through space or circling a subject, and it immediately makes certain scenes just in this preview pop. It's an eye-catching style, and mixed with the gritty, neo-noir story and locations, The Connection looks like it could be a rather cool film. Given its plot, there will obviously be some immediate connections drawn between it and William Friedkin's The French Connection (a rather heavy comparison), but hopefully it will manage to hold its own.
Also, in case you didn't catch it, the music that's playing over most of the trailer is a lovely French cover of Nancy Sinatra's "Bang Bang," which many of you cinefiles will recognize from its use in the opening credits sequence of Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill Vol. 1. It works rather well in the trailer, mostly thanks to the perfectly synced gunshots.
The Connection made its world premiere at last year's Toronto International Film Festival in September, and while it has already seen release in countries like France, Belgium and Greece, it won't be hitting theaters in the United States until May 15th (courtesy of Drafthouse Films). We'll be crossing our fingers hoping that it winds up being as good as this trailer makes it look.