Follow Us on Twitter

The French Connection - Blu-ray preview

The French Connection

Preview by Jack Foley

THERE are no rules and no holds barred as the acclaimed classic The French Connection is released on Blu-ray for the first time on December 1, 2008, from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment, both on its own as a two disc special edition (RRP £19.99) and as a triple disc set complete with The French Connection II (RRP £34.99).

Packed with new special features, these spectacular Blu-ray discs perfectly showcase why these groundbreaking films had an immediate influence on dozens of movies and TV shows, redefining the crime thriller with a combination of brutal realism and high-octane craftsmanship.

The French Connection I and II on Blu-ray is packed with exclusive new High-Def content including an introduction by William Friedkin, an ‘Anatomy of a Chase’ featurette, Friedkin and Grosso remembering the real French Connection, and a featurette about the music of Don Ellis.

A milestone film from 1971 and winner of five Academy Awards® including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Actor, William Friedkin’s The French Connection transformed the crime thriller with its gritty, authentic story about New York City police detectives on the trail of a large shipment of heroin.

Based on an actual police case and the illustrious career of New York cop Eddie Egan, the film stars Gene Hackman (Bonnie and Clyde, The Poseidon Adventure, Unforgiven) in a career-defining performance as Jimmy ‘Popeye’ Doyle, whose unorthodox methods of crime-fighting are anything but diplomatic.

With his partner Buddy Russo (Roy Scheider;), Popeye investigates the international shipment of heroin masterminded by the suave Frenchman Alain Charnier (Fernando Rey) who eludes Popeye through an escalating series of pursuits.

Tough, clever and cool, The French Connection features one of the greatest car chases ever filmed in which Doyle races under New York’s elevated train tracks in a borrowed Sedan; a breathtaking sequence that earned an Oscar® for editing, and which fans can now experience in glorious high-definition detail.

The impressive sequel, The French Connection II, followed in 1975, this time directed by John Frankenheimer.

Set several years after the original, Doyle (Hackman) arrives in Marseilles after receiving orders from his New York captain to assist the French police with their struggle to shut down the drug network in the city.

Unable to simply stand back and observe as instructed, Popeye soon finds nothing is as he expected as he grapples with culture shock and heroin withdrawal.

Again featuring exceptional High-Def action sequences, The French Connection II saw Hackman nominated for both a BAFTA® and a Golden Globe® for his mesmerising performance.

Don’t miss your chance to bring two all-time classic films into sharp focus this December with this stylish and impressive double-act on Blu-ray.