Directed by Cedric Jimenez and Shannon Harvey
Written by Cedric Jimenez and Audrey Diwan
Starring: Jean Dijardin and Giles Lellouche

THE CONNECTION is loosely based on the true story of a judge in Marseille who became obsessed with taking down a heroin kingpin. There is little overlap in this film and the 40 year old US film, THE FRENCH CONNECTION, although they are parts of the same story. This one closely follows the true events in France. And whereas TFC seemed to revel in its action, this one uses it sparingly.

What it plays out to be is a game of cat and mouse between the judge, charged with taking Zampa down, played by Jean Dijardin and the mobster Tany Zampa (Lellouche). The drug trade going on in Marseilles has made the streets unsafe and embarrassed those charged with enforcing the laws. And, of course, the enormous amounts of money at Zampa’s disposal has made the police unreliable.

It is fun to note the similarities between the men: both family men, both open to brutality if necessary, both even take their exercise in the same way. The movie looks good and sounds good. If I had to fault it, it would be its length and a few murky connection. But small faults in a very entertaining and well-made film.

Patti Abbott
In addition to being the Crimespree Senior Film Critic, Patti has penned numerous short stories and her debut novel, CONCRETE ANGEL, is in stores now. She hosts a look at Forgotten Books every Friday with readers, writers and reviewers at She hopes you’ll join in