The Hole (Le Trou) (1964) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Hole (Le Trou)1964

The Hole (Le Trou) (1964)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

The Hole (Le Trou) Photos

Movie Info

Tense drama about five inmates who plan to escape from jail while the prison is being repaired. Philippe Leroy, Marc Michel. Geo: Michel Constantin. Roland: Jean Keraudy. Governor: Andre Bervil. Monseigneur: Raymond Meunier. Grinval: Jean-Paul Coquelin. Directed by Jacques Becker.

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Michel Constantin
as Geo Cassine
Jean Keraudy
as Roland Darbant
Philippe Leroy
as Manu Borelli
Marc Michel
as Claude Gaspard
Raymond Meunier
as Monseigneur
Eddy Rasimi
as Guard Bouboule
Jean Paul Coquelin
as Guard Grinval
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Critic Reviews for The Hole (Le Trou)

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (6)

As long as men have been placed behind bars they've plotted to escape, and those plans have powered prison-break movies without end. But even in that large group, "Le Trou" stands apart.

August 31, 2017 | Full Review…

If you ever wind up in a French prison, don't smuggle in a file - just bring a DVD of this movie. It's practically a guide to breaking out.

June 27, 2017 | Full Review…

Becker details the ambient violence of prison life, the hidden negotiations between captives and captors, and the solidarity of detainees, but his deeply empathetic, fanatically specific view of his protagonists leaves out some elements.

June 26, 2017 | Full Review…

Jacques Becker's 1959 film was the last great flowering of French classicism; the 'tradition of quality' here goes out with a masterpiece.

January 23, 2008

Classical in its intense simplicity, this is certainly Becker's most perfectly crafted film.

June 24, 2006
Top Critic

The actors, none of whom are familiar, play their roles with such simple, natural force that they become not only bold adventurers but also deeply appreciable friends.

May 9, 2005 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Hole (Le Trou)

The lack of Hollywood-style production values forces the viewer to focus on the men and their plight. They unite over their shared desire to escape. Normally civilization prescribes that a criminal must be punished and serve their sentence. Morally that's justifiable. But these men don't come off as hardened criminals. They're polite, well mannered, and trustworthy. The responsibility of society to punish these men is never an issue. We want them to break out and that's a testament to how seemingly honorable these men are. The camaraderie of these five men illustrates a close friendship in which Manu, Geo, Roland, and "Monsignor"" must befriend and rely on each other, as well as Claude Gaspard, the outsider. There's a searing humanity that plays out in their shared plan. In this way, there's a temperament to the men that's not readily apparent but slow builds over the course of the story. Loyalty is their most prized virtue and their devotion is quietly profound.

Mark Hobin
Mark Hobin

Super Reviewer

Prison-break stories are somewhat hackneyed now, but not at the time of this gripping 1960 drama. Five cellmates (all unproven actors, including someone who was involved in the real-life scheme that inspired the script) meticulously dig a way out of their claustrophobic cell. The plan is detailed enough to include trivia such as constructing a tiny hourglass and "periscope" out of everyday items. The film has no musical score except in the closing credits, and director Jacques Becker's avoidance of such cinematic distractions puts the viewer right in the cell as a sixth prisoner. Elements of the plan seem a little too easy (why didn't anyone hear all that noisy, late-night hacking through cement?) but "Le Trou" is a suspenseful, entertaining ride that will captivate mainstream audiences as well as foreign-film buffs. Sadly, Becker died just weeks before the film's release.

Eric Broome
Eric Broome

Super Reviewer

becker's final film and it's fantastic. every bit as good and a great counterpoint to bresson's masterpiece, a man escaped. completely nerve wracking

Stella Dallas
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

The Hole (Le Trou) Quotes

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