Check Out Some More Papillon
3 mins read

Check Out Some More Papillon

Greetings again from the darkness. It seems that almost every Remake that happens asks the question “”why?”This is especially true if the Film being made is a favorite, like PAPILLON from 1973. the Original was directed by Academy Award-winning Franklin J. Schaffner (PATTON, Planet of the Apes, the boys of Brazil) and starred two legendary actors, Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman. The screenplay was written by Dalton Trumbo and Lorenzo Semple Jr. written and based on the career books “Butterfly” and “Banco”. Sir. Carriere, of course, was the title itself, and although the oddities of its stories have aroused skepticism over the years, it nevertheless provided a fascinating fabric.

So why remake the Film 45 years after? Well, this is a friendlier and softer Version with two of Today’s most popular actors: Charlie Hunnam (“Sons of Anarchy”) and Rami Malek (“Mr.Robot”) as a butterfly, and Aaron Guzikowski’s script focuses more on friendship and less on the brutal cage environment. The director Michael Noer (I certainly don’t know his work until now) delivers a film that is very beautiful and that serves as an example of loyalty and connection.

The Film starts in Paris in 1931 and we see Papillon (so well known for the butterfly tattoo on his chest) doing what he does… Safecracking for a powerful bandit. He seems to be living the good life with his girlfriend (played by Bono’s daughter, Eve Hewson) and they intend to escape this life of crime – always an ominous sign in movies. Of course, he is imprisoned for execution and sent to the penal colony of French Guiana. There he meets Louis Dega (Malek), a master forger. Dega is a gentle and light man, and the bundle of money hidden in his underwear puts a target directly on his back. Butterfly’s muscles and the need for money to lubricate the wheels of his escape, and Dega’s need for protection, make him a Match in heaven (or, for that matter, hell).

A man of eternal optimism, Papillon never loses faith that he will escape, even when the guardian (a formidable Vorick van Wageningen from Fincher, the girl with the Dragon tattoo) declares that Hope is his enemy. The years Of isolation deprive the butterfly years and the weight, but never The hope. A final stay on The Devil’s Island connects the two men, a bond that can only be formed in such difficult circumstances. Knowing That Henri Carrière wrote the manuscripts of the books in 1969, the end is known before it begins; but it is the narrative of the story that allows us to know both Papillon and Dega.

The latter script contributes better to the development of friendship, offering Dad’s past and the reason for living. The Original shows a man’s Commitment to survive, while this one makes Hope a Philosophy. Without the Magic of McQueen, Mr. Noer’s Version is not quite comparable, but for those who have never seen the 1973 Film, it should prove quite engaging – even if we old-timers don’t mind the more friendly/gentle approach.

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