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Country: France/Great Britain/Italy
Run Time: 122 minutes
The setting: Nazi-occupied Paris, 1942. Robert Klein (Alain Delon), a suave, 40-year-old antique dealer, makes a handsome living buying up the art treasures of desperate Jews who need quick cash to escape the mass deportations in boxcars leading to Auschwitz. He's smooth, cultivated, heartless. He's something of an adventurer who enjoys the company of women and his own freedom. He finds obstacles stimulating. He's also a French Catholic from the German-speaking region of Alsace. One day he finds out about another Robert Klein - a Jew who's using him as a cover to conceal his resistance activities. The protagonist Robert Klein begins his search for the other Klein, and Losey's film is about that search. MR. KLEIN is at once a political thriller, a psychological study and a moral allegory about guilt and responsibility. Influenced by Alfred Hitchcock, Losey withholds information so that we know no more at any given moment than the protagonist has been able to discover for himself. The movie was written by Franco Solinas, who has also scripted films for such political artists as Costa-Gavras. Losey began his movie career in the United States in the late 1940s. He was perhaps the most gifted director to be blacklisted during the witch-hunts of the McCarthy era. Unable to find work in his native country, Losey moved to England in 1952. In the 1960s he collaborated with writer Harold Pinter and actor Dirk Bogarde on a number of off-beat psychological films, including "The Servant" (1963) and "Accident" (1967). In addition, Losey has directed such distinguished movies as "The Go-Between" (1971), "The Assassination of Trotsky" (1972) and the Jane Fonda version of Ibsen's "A Doll's House" (1973). MR. KLEIN is Losey's first foreign-language effort, and is exquisitely photographed by his regular cinematographer Gerry Fisher. Jeanne Moreau is featured as the mysterious Florence.
Gerry Fisher, B.S.C.
Alain Delon, Jeanne Moreau, Suzanne Flon, Michel Lonsdale, Juliet Berto, Jean Bouise, Francine Berge, Francine Racette, Massimo Girotti, Jean Champion, Magali Clement, Louis Seigner