The French Connection (1971)

The French Connection is a gritty crime drama following two cops and the drug bust of a lifetime. The film won five Academy Awards, including best picture, actor and director! Let’s consider the pros and cons of The French Connection…

Pros: Firstly, William Friedkin’s direction is nothing short of amazing! The footage is raw and intense. And instead of relying solely on dialogue for exposition, Friedkin lets the story unfold naturally through the character’s actions. Speaking of story, after almost 50 years, this story still holds up incredibly well! Equally as great are the performances, especially from Gene Hackman, who goes on to win the Oscar for this role. Lastly, I liked the use of sound in this movie. Several scenes begin with inaudible dialogue due to the environment, but what’s really important in those scenes are the character actions. I love how this movie reacquainted me with filmmaking techniques that you just don’t see every day.

Cons: I’m slightly biased because I like gritty cop movies, but there isn’t much I can fault this movie for. However, if you’re not a fan of this genre, the foul language and lulls during stakeouts may not be as appealing to you. Secondly, although this isn’t a long movie, the leisurely progression makes it feel slightly drawn-out. Otherwise, I have no complaints and encourage you to watch it!

I give The French Connection a solid A. It’s a thrilling film with superb direction and a story that holds up incredibly well today! It’s also a must-see Gene Hackman performance. Happy Watching!





  • Acting
  • Direction
  • Plot
  • Sound
  • Pacing

Where to Watch

“You ever been to Poughkeepsie?”

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