TV Cream

Films: F is for...

French Connection, The

James Robertson Justice darts in and out of underground trains again while Gene ‘Loose Cannons’ Hackman tries manfully to catch up with him but is stymied by the aftertaste of the fearsomely nasty looking grape juice drink he’s just imbibed having bought it from an equally vicious looking stall on the platform. Other culinary highlights include the mammoth French dinner Frog One and his sidekick (Tadpole Two?) have whilst Hackman stand in the street freezing to death with only a botulism-riddled hot dog and shit American coffee (natch) to keep him going and the appalling food served at the rubbish caff of Sal, the crap drug dealer involved in the plot. None of the gastronomic delights of this match up to the scran on show in the sequel however, which is basically a series of tableaux displaying, or at least mentioning, food interspersed with angry Frenchmen in le C&A togs. From the opening, which involves a fish or two, to a bar which delights customers by allowing them to accompany their Chartreuse with a free boiled egg, to the piece and steak the bloke who gets stabbed in the alleyway was scoffing, to the tins of crap French soup the drugs are hidden in, and not forgetting the insistence on all sorts of terminally rubbish junk food that Hackman demands when he’s got the munchies, it’s one big menu. If viewers were to play that terrible Withnail drinking game, where the lonely and embittered viewer matches the characters drink for drink, but with a bite for bite accompaniment instead, they’d be looking at a result of Mr Creosote proportions.

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