The Night Watch


2h 3m 1964

Brief Synopsis

Five man are in jail. They try to escape with a tunnel they are digging, but at the day before they want to escape one of them is told, that his case is no longer prosecuted and he'll be free in a few days.

Film Details

Also Known As
Il Buco, Le Trou
MPAA Rating
Release Date
Jan 1964
Premiere Information
New York opening: 26 May 1964
Production Company
Filmsonor; Playart; Titanus
Distribution Company
Consort/Orion Films
Country
France
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel Le trou by José Giovanni (Paris, 1957).

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 3m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Black and White

Synopsis

At La Santé prison in France, Claude Gaspard awaits trial for the attempted murder of his wife. By French law a man is guilty until proven otherwise. Gaspard is moved into a cell with Roland Darban, Geo Cassid, Manu Borelli, and "Monseigneur," who decide to include him in their escape plan, devised by Roland. Two dummies are constructed to deceive the guards in their nightly check; a hole is dug in the cell floor and covered during daylight hours by cardboard cartons which the prisoners have been assigned to assemble; a piece of mirror and a toothbrush are made into a periscope with which to watch the guards; medicine bottles and sand are fashioned into an hourglass to time the work; and an iron bunk leg is used as a digging implement. Working in shifts by pairs, the men dig into the subterranean areas of the prison, from there into the prison's sewer tunnels, and from there through a 9-foot tunnel into the city's sewer system. On the day the tunnel is completed and the men plan to escape, Gaspard is called to the warden's office. He returns to the cell and announces that his wife has withdrawn her charges. However, he explains that he plans to escape with the others because he still faces a 5-year prison term and succeeds in allaying his cellmates' suspicions. That night, as they are preparing to leave, Geo informs the group that he is not going because his mother's health is at stake. Just then the alarm rings and, as the guards rush into the cell, the men realize that they have been betrayed by Gaspard.

Film Details

Also Known As
Il Buco, Le Trou
MPAA Rating
Release Date
Jan 1964
Premiere Information
New York opening: 26 May 1964
Production Company
Filmsonor; Playart; Titanus
Distribution Company
Consort/Orion Films
Country
France
Screenplay Information
Based on the novel Le trou by José Giovanni (Paris, 1957).

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 3m
Sound
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Color
Black and White

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Opened in Paris in March 1960 as Le trou; in Rome in April 1960 as Il buco. Original running time: 145 min.

Miscellaneous Notes

Limited re-release in United States June 28, 2017

Released in United States 1996

Released in United States 1999

Shown at Seattle International Film Festival (Archival Presentations) May 13 - June 6, 1999.

Last film of director Jacques Becker.

Re-released in Paris October 10, 1990.

Limited re-release in United States June 28, 2017

Released in United States 1996 (Shown at Telluride Film Festival August 30 - September 2, 1996.)

Released in United States 1999 (Shown at Seattle International Film Festival (Archival Presentations) May 13 - June 6, 1999.)