Mesrine: Public Enemy #1—Music Box Films

Video: 4/5
Audio: 4/5
Extras: 1/5

The true story of one of Europe's most infamous and charismatic criminals comes to a close in this drama based on the life and crimes of Jacques Mesrine. Picking up where Killer Instinct left off, Public Enemy # 1 begins as Mesrine returns to France after an exile in Canada. Teaming up with gunman Michel Ardouin, Mesrine masterminds a series of armed robberies, and while he's able to stay one step ahead of the law most of the time, eventually he finds himself back in prison, where he makes friends with the clever François. With François' help, Mesrine breaks out of prison and becomes something of a celebrity, penning an autobiography, hob-nobbing with the wealthy and trying to paint himself as a political radical with the help of leftist spokesman Charlie. Mesrine also renews his relationship with his girlfriend, Sylvia, but he also turns his back on some of his old friends and underestimates the determination of the French police to stop him once and for all.

The second film in the Mesrine film series looks pretty much identical to the first and the quality of the Blu-ray transfer is terrific. The photography does have a bit of a gritty look with prominent film grain at times, but I love the stylization. Colors are bold and slightly oversaturated giving the film a bit of a old-Hollywood feel at times. While the cover doesn’t list a lossless soundtrack the track is indeed a TrueHD mix. You can either view with the original French soundtrack or an English dub. Plenty of great dynamics in this one with lots of ambiance and surround use. I also love the soundtrack selections throughout.

Some trailers are included as extras, but nothing about the production.

The Mesrine films are both brilliant in their depiction of the infamous real life gangster. Cassell is in top form and delivers one of the best performances I’ve seen in recent years. A must see for gangster film fans!