Picks and Pans Review: Purple Noon

updated 07/22/1996 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/22/1996 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Alain Delon

No matter how powerful a sun-screen you wear, you'll still be scorched by the pernicious heat of Purple Noon. This sunbaked French thriller, originally released in 1960 and now reissued under Martin Scorsese's imprimatur, is an elegant tale of murder on the French Riviera. Delon, looking as languidly sleek and dangerous as a panther at rest, portrays an amoral young man who knocks off a playboy pal (Maurice Ronet) and then coolly takes possession of the dead man's name, bank account and, eventually, fiancée (Marie Laforêt). As directed by René Clément (Forbidden Games), it's all très smart, sexy and suspenseful, and Delon, well, let's just say he is one mighty cute croissant. (PG-13)

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