Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman are some of the biggest movie stars of the 21st century. So, when they teamed up in 1973 for Papillon it was epic to put it mildly. Based on the late Henri Charriere’s book, Papillon (French for butterfly) which was Charriere’s nickname in the Paris underworld. He’s an honorable safecracker dishonorably framed for the murder of a smalltime pimp and sentenced to life in the penal colony of 1931.
The remake stars two remarkable actors (Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek), who have the arduous task of making the audience care whether or not Papi and Dega make it to freedom. They make the audience question the value of trust. What would a man do to get it, keep it and use it as an impetuous toward survival in the most dire of circumstances.
Malek and Hunnam addressed theses issues and more during a roundtable interview with some journalists including yours truly. Here are some excerpts…
INTERVIEW WITH PAPILLON STARS CHARLIE HUNNAM, RAMI MALEK AND DIRECTOR MICHAEL NOER
Michael Noer’s direction is beautifully executed and they way he uses the camera to illustrate the move from the darkness of incarceration to the light of impending freedom is breathtaking. Charlie Hunnam as Papillon is charisma with a capital ‘C.’ His on-screen presence speaks volumes even when he doesn’t utter a word. Rami Malek is perfection as Dega and the combination of these two men together is sheer dynamite.
I suspect that when the awards season buzz begins Papillo, its stars and director will be at the top of that list. There wasn’t a dull moment or frame witnessed from the first frame to the last. Produced by Bleecker Street – Papillon hit theaters on August 24th.