Cartes Sur Table

In Paprika Chips, Save European Home on November 5, 2012 at 9:24 pm

Title: Cartes Sur Table (Attack of the Robots)
Production: France/Spain 1966
Director: Jess Franco
Cast: Eddie Constantine, Françoise Brion
Run Time: 90min
Circulation: PAL DVDr
Generation/Source: DVD Master
Language:  French
Subtitles: English, French

Custom DVD by suckmysound, enhancing the French release with English subtitles by aloysius70, suckmysound and johnstev.

“I happened to catch this foreign-made film by accident, many years ago, when I was just a kid. It came on TBS some time after midnight, and I started watching since it had something to do with secret agents. Later on, the old man asked me what I was watching, and I told him that I wasn’t sure but that “this guy” was pretty good. “This guy” that was referred to was Eddie Constantine. At the time, I thought he was just some minor European actor appearing for probably the first or only time in this minor spy caper. What came across was a certain attitude behind the coarsened, roughhewn character, which let you know that the actor did not take himself or the material too seriously. Constantine’s hero stolidly made his way through the plot, doggedly determined to get the job done while showing as little emotion or concern as possible, and winning the viewer over in the process. In the years since, I was surprised to learn that Eddie Constantine was born in the US, and eventually became a singing star in France during the late 1940s-early 1950s, before becoming a film star in 1953. Until the close of the 1960s, he played numerous detectives, secret agents, gangsters, etc., in a string of European (mostly French) action-adventures that were often shot in the fast-moving style of American B-pictures. ATTACK OF THE ROBOTS was made in 1966, when Constantine’s stardom was coming to an end (he would still have a long career ahead of him as mostly a supporting player, until his death in 1993). If his mere presence could raise the level of this material, it would be interesting to see some of the other action films from his heyday. Unfortunately, with the advent of infomercials, and scarcity of old European-made films such as these, you won’t be finding them on the late, late show any longer. In any event, it’s a lesser spy film to be sure, but if you’re a true fan of the genre you will find some entertainment value even with this. There is the usual fantastic plot, here a nefarious scheme in which the evil organization seeks to control people of a certain blood type. Hence, Interpol is called in and agent Al Pereira (Constantine) is on the case. Also, included in the plot are the requisite megalomaniacal villain (played by Fernando Rey, five years away from FRENCH CONNECTION), and a not-so-innocent heroine (played by sexy Sophie Hardy). All in all, ATTACK OF THE ROBOTS is reasonably enjoyable on its own terms, taken for nothing more than what it was meant to be. But it is also a good introduction to the unique persona of Eddie Constantine, who managed to make the film a good deal more enjoyable. “ [imdb- grstmc]


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