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Jean-Paul Belmondo delivers a subtly sensual performance in the hot-under-the-collar Léon Morin, Priest (Léon Morin, prêtre), directed by Jean-Pierre Melville. The French superstar plays a devoted man of the cloth who is desired by all the women of a small village in Nazi-occupied France. He finds himself most drawn to a sexually frustrated widow—played by Emmanuelle Riva—a religious skeptic whose relationship with her confessor turns into a confrontation with both God and her own repressed desire. A triumph of mood, setting, and innuendo, Léon Morin, Priest is an irreverent pleasure from one of French cinema’s towering virtuosos.

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Special Features New high-definition digital restoration (with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition) French television interview with director Jean-Pierre Melville and actor Jean-Paul Belmondo from 1961 Selected-scene commentary by film scholar Ginette Vincendeau Original theatrical trailer PLUS: A booklet featuring an essay by critic and novelist Gary Indiana and excerpts from Melville on Melville

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CC572 Léon Morin, Priest DVD (1961/Jean Paul Belmondo) $29.95 $26.99