Papillon (2017) Poster

(I) (2017)

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Very touching
krismancini6 November 2018
This is a great film. I have not seen the original. Rami Malek does such a great job, he's really coming up in the acting world. I love him.

The story is a beautiful one. About friendship, loyalty, trust and courage. I had thoughts about how grateful I am to be living the life I currently live, after seeing what some people have endured through this movie.

Worth a watch that's for sure! 7/10
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Watch the Original Fil
jrbond-5762428 October 2018
This isn't a bad remake, but McQueen and Hoffman deliver such amazing performances in the original film, this film was always going to find that impossible to get close to. Whilst it's a reasonable stand-alone film and not a bad movie, you just find yourself comparing it to the original at every turn. A classic film, is a classic film and should really be left alone. I'd prefer directors and producers to look at new projects and new ideas. Rehashing movies that have already been brilliantly done, are just a waste of resources. I would advise anyone wanting to watch this movie, just watch the original.
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Not bad, but it's not good, either!
khunkrumark26 October 2018
Flat characters and unimaginative, choppy direction attempt to tell the story of the friendship of two convicts.

There's a lot of emphasis on a few brutal scenes yet there's scant coverage of the relationships of the characters. But for the most part it's just a visual jumble. The narrative jumps about and spends too long on lingering scenes and nowhere near enough time on characters and the linear story-line.

The effects of years of brutality have almost no physical effect on the prisoners who look like they just hopped out of make-up after a good lunch!

The 1973 version is timeless and a work of cinematic genius. This version will be forgotten in a few weeks.
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A Decent Remake, Correctly Cast Actors, Good Direction
svhot22 September 2017
"Papillon" is based on a true story of a French thief who becomes friends with one of his fellow prison mates, and together they plan an escape. It is the remake of the 1973 movie of the same name.

Hunnam, who plays the main protagonist, gives a brilliant performance. He is an intelligent actor who has given his own original touch to the role. He plays the role with a lot of realism and intensity. The surprise package of "Papillon" is Rami Malek, who plays Hunnam's friend. He has given an outstanding performance that challenges the one originally done by the great Dustin Hoffman.

The direction is effective and the original atmosphere of the 1973 flick has been captured well enough.
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kluseba5 September 2018
Warning: Spoilers
There is no question that the original Papillon movie released almost forty-five years ago and starring star actors Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman is an amazing historical period drama and survival adventure movie. Based upon true events, it tells the story of a wrongfully convincted prisoner who tries to escape a French penal colony in French Guiana on three occasions. One has to question why such a movie would be remade in the first place. Even by today's standard, the original film's acting performances are very skilled, the exotic locations are breathtaking and the story about freedom and friendship is profound and timeless. Even though the remake isn't a terrible film, it's completely unnecessary. If you're not familiar with the topic, I would suggest watching the original film. I would even suggest reading Henri Charrière's Papillon and Banco novels which inspired both films. I would even recommend watching a documentary about French penal colonies before watching this remake. Watching this film should be your last option. However, it still remains an option, simply because the story is so good that it deserves to be watched or read or heard.

A remake should have the ambition to offer a different take on the events of the original movie and to improve it. There are very few of these elements to be found in this film. If compared to the original film, this remake shows us roughly fifteen minutes of the lead character's life before his wrongful conviction. We can see him cracking a safe, attending a party with members of an organized crime gang and spending time with his girlfriend. This exposition also shows a reason why Papillon would be framed for a murder he didn't commit. He kept some of the diamonds he stole for the gang to offer them to his girlfriend and was seen in the process of doing just that.

One element where the remake nearly matches the original film's quality is the acting. If compared to the unique Steve McQueen and the diversified Dustin Hoffman, Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek are obviously less experienced but they might deliver the best performances of their careers. Their friendship feels stronger and makes even more sense than in the original film. Charlie Hunnam convinces as resilient man who never gives up on his dream of freedom and comes surprisingly close to Steve McQueen's charismatic performance. Rami Malked does a solid job as scared intellectual and has great chemistry with Charlie Hunnam but can't match Dustin Hoffman's natural talent.

On all other levels, the remake is quite a letdown. The new version is about twenty minutes shorter than the original film but ironically feels much longer than the film released forty-five years ago that already had a few lengths. The events leading to the first escape attempt are stretched and the scenes in solitary confinement are played brilliantly but end up being quite repetitive. On the other side, important scenes have been cut or excluded in the remake. The men's haunting passage at a leper colony was completely cut from the remake. Papillon's life with a native tribe lasts for about five minutes in the remake even though he lived there for a long period of time, got married to two sisters and even impregnated them. The ending is quite abrupt in the remake as the director shows a brief scene of Papillon's return to France decades after his final escape without telling what happened in nearly three decades between both events, making the remake feel less concise and focused than the original film that ended with Papillon's succesful escape.

One element I would have liked to be mentioned is the fact that Henri Charrière's story was at least partially made up. He clearly wasn't as innocent and sympathetic as portrayed in the movie. Making his character a little bit more sinister would have been an intriguing addition if compared to the rather neutral original film. However, Papillon instead seems to be an even friendlier lead character than in the original film which is somewhat misplaced but goes along with typical Hollywood productions that fabricate heroic protagonists the audience wants to cheer for. In this case, this approach is too simplistic.

In the end, there are very few reasons to watch this remake. The exposition adds some depth to the lead character and the acting performances exceeded my expectations. However, the movie has more lengths than the original film, important scenes have been cut and the resolution feels misplaced. At the end of the day, this remake was quite unnecessary.
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Still a great storyline
quark-8020829 August 2018
I love this remake. I loved the original. The only things I have issue with on the remake are the exteriors portraying French Guiana. I know this remake was shot in Europe. You'd think with modern technology they could've made it look like Guiana as opposed to Europe. The portrayal of the Salvation islands, especially Devils Island, is so historically incorrect. I still love the storyline. Charlie and Remi were perfect in their roles. In the original, you could feel their plight from jungle diseases and atmosphere. This one just looked like a dreary day in Serbia.
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We didn t need this remake
tz287722 September 2018
The original is beautiful and had two great actors... Charlie and rami have only one expression during the film...
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Butterfly with no wings
Richie-67-48585225 August 2018
Watch the original and be wowed. Watch this and you will wonder why you didn't watch the original. There are no memorable scenes, acting is sincere but has no impact and this movie plays out like a tired story instead of an adventure. One has to wonder why this was done and the thought process behind it? Obvious behind the scenes dynamics are at work. I will say that it is watchable but only with a good snack, a friend or a way to kill some time. It is not a must see. I walked out before it ended for two reason. 1. I knew how it ended and 2. enough already. BTW...the book came under scrutiny as to whether it was all true or created by adding a bunch of stories together. Regardless of it all the book is a must read for anyone who likes a good read...
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Not again
waskilywabbid15 August 2018
To try and reproduce a former classic is getting out of hand. Directors have no insight into new subjects. Leave the classics alone
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Better left to the original
dondutton18 August 2018
Why do they make new versions of films done so well in the original? The original Papillon gets an 8 rating in IMDB. Well deserved. This flaccid re make gets 6.5. Why did they bother? Has Hollywood just run completely out of imagination to do new stories?
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Gritty, intense, thrilling, fantastic performances!
jessiejpb30 September 2017

I had the privilege of seeing Papillon at the world premiere screening at TIFF (September 7th, 2017).

Because this movie is sadly going to endure never-ending comparison to the 1973 original, here's my opinion about that one. I actually found it very boring and I didn't feel engaged at all in the character's stories or struggles. I just could not get into it. The friendship between Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman felt so awkward and lacked chemistry to me, and I found the acting very "wooden" throughout most of it. I finished it feeling very confused as to why the movie has always been given such high praise. I realize that it was seen as a very riveting adventure epic back in the 70s, but it's 45 years later so there is nothing wrong with having a fresh/modernized telling of the story. We are in an era of "remakes" after all. Side note: this movie is not actually a remake of the original. Both movies were based on different interpretations of the book.

So what did I think of this new version? I was engaged during every single minute of it! It has something in it for everyone. It is gritty, raw, intense, emotional, dramatic, even humourous at times, and tells a powerful story of male friendship and loyalty in its purest form.

As for Charlie Hunnam (Henri Charrière aka Papillon), well he killed his performance! He did very intense preparation for the role by losing 40 lbs, and he even stayed in the prison cell alone, every night after filming, for 8 days without food or water. He also remained silent during that time. The weight loss and isolation is exactly what he did for his movie The Lost City of Z (8 months prior) so you can imagine how dedicated he is to his craft. He broke himself down, not only physically, but also mentally and emotionally, and all of it made for very powerful solitary confinement sequences. (He said in an interview that by the end of filming he'd gotten as close as he wanted to get to feeling true madness.)

He also brought charm, swag, and likability to the character. He just carried the lead so perfectly!

This is the first role of Rami Malek's that I've seen and he did not disappoint! He also delivered a fantastic performance. He played the character Louis Dega in a less "idiotic" way than Dustin Hoffman and was a very strong scene partner for Charlie. They both brought their A game and really fed off each other.

The cinematography and editing were great, and the movie had great flow and pace. I didn't want it to end!

Overall, I think the thing people need to know before pre-judging this movie and assuming it's going to be terrible is that this version delves a lot deeper than the original does, and puts more emphasis on solitary confinement suffering, poor mental health, weight loss, and the male friendship. I think that's why I connected to it and felt a lot of investment in the story, and it's also why I think the performances were way better than Steve McQueen's and Dustin Hoffman's. Yes, I just said that. Just because that movie was considered a classic doesn't mean it can't be beaten. And in my opinion, it was definitely beaten. (Although, I'm sure people will be scared to admit that and feel like they are betraying Steve McQueen's memory..)

Anyway, I can't wait to see it again when it comes to theatres on August 24th. And I really think everyone should have an open mind and give it fair chance. Don't write it off before seeing it. And when you do see it, pretend the original never existed and judge this one own its own merits. Both movies are very different from each other and all 4 actors brought the characters to life in different ways. Ask yourself "is this movie engaging?" and "are the performances good?", instead of just "who did it better?".
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Compassionate and timely.
mymangodfrey25 August 2018
I haven't seen the first movie (yet), but it's worth noting that this is not just a remake of a Hollywood movie; it's a second attempt to adapt a pair of culturally important memoirs. That's allowed.

The performances in this second Papillon are wonderful, even down to the smallest supporting role. Nobody overplays his role; the acting is naturalistic. The two leads' performances are so committed, though, that I felt real attachment to them, and believed in their friendship.

The movie, contrary to what I've read, is not visually dull; it's just not ostentatious.

A story this quiet (almost the Buddhist version of a prison-break movie) was never going to light the world on fire. Still, I'm sorry to see it getting so much hate here. It's a well-intentioned and well-made movie, and it had an emotional impact on me.

As for the people saying "why this movie? Why now?", you might consider reading a book like The New Jim Crow, or reading some recent research reports from groups like Amnesty International on prison conditions in 2018. Sadistic treatment of prisoners, of human beings, is a moral disgrace, and we aren't reminded of that fact often enough.
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Darker than Prison Break, harder than Gulag
jeannefrancoise27 September 2018
Dear movie fellows, Papillon is the most wanted movie in my country. It is entering in the screenings so late, of course because so many factors, but we already knew the main story from the Internet. While it is coming to Indonesia, it is such a blessing. This movie is not a popular movie, not having typically Hollywood ending, but it brings the strong sense of humanism and how is the deep mind of prisoners, who had been captured unfairly. Papillon has simple main story about how prisoners had tried to escape, been captured, escaped again, and been captured again. The repetition plots in this movie is not boring, because we have Rami Malek's great acting, sad scenes of cinematography, and unbelievable shooting of dark side in Guyanna French prisoners' islands. Rami Malek is not the main actor, but he leads the whole action-reaction scenarios and I am pretty sure he will be great in his next moves in both Hollywood and European film industry. Papillon had big success in America, North America, and Europe and this year I am pretty sure it has more success in Asia, even though it is not popular movie, but is darker than Prison Break and harder than Gulag story. Much appreciation ahead for the Director, Producer, actors, cinematographer, and editor.
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Read the book
mandy-4832215 September 2018
Read the book and you will realize that this move - and the 1973 one - both pale in comparison. You remember books. Those are the things that contain interesting stories the movie producers seek to destroy.
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Watch this one 1st
Acruxas10 November 2018
If you have never seen the original then save it until after you have watched this version first. This is not a bad film, however if you rush off to make sure you see the original before watching this, then you will be constantly comparing it to the original and won't get to enjoy this as much because it is of coarse different. They have made a few changes to scenes :/ and skipped some entirely :( but as far as remakes go they've done a pretty bloody good job compared to some other films and TV series I could mention. Of coarse it's easy to sit back and judge, which is why you should wait to see the original after you've watched this one first, trust me you'll enjoy it more that way. However if you are the type who likes having a good whinge then forget everything you just read ;) but reviewers, don't try and ruin it for a whole new generation, the story is still good. Most young people today are not going to read the book or sit through an "old" movie for that matter most probably either... but they will watch this.
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dogmaticdogs2 September 2018
I never saw the original, so I cannot compare it to this movie. However, I found the acting above-average and the story interesting. Too many of us take our freedom for granted. These types of movies are great for keeping us grounded.
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disappointing remake... Not quite garbage, but defiantly for the rubbish bin...
lightbeing-4826110 September 2018
I wanted to root for Charlie Hunnam, but who could equal and top Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman? Although the musical score and scenery was top notch, the screenplay and dialogue lacked any real grip on my senses. Remaking a masterpiece was a waste of money that could have fed the poor or built a new hospital and funded a few local libraries etc etc.... Don't bother with this one and watch the original if you have not already seen it....
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Not convincing
mattiaswigforss22 September 2018
Another remake of a timeless classic and it fails to deliver. Sure, it has its moments but the McQueen/Hoffman original is far more intense and convincing. Just look at the image gallery for that version here at IMDB; those are convincing enough imho
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Shoots for the sky, but misses the mark.
manofangery26 August 2018
This movie already has an uphill battle ahead of it by proxy, being a remake of the 1973 classic, and that's where I'm sure most criticism this movie gets will stem from. So let me get this out of the way now: This review will NOT be a comparison to the 1973 original. This movie will be reviewed as its own work, and I will not compare it to the original unless its deviations raise a legitimate question.

On its own, this is a perfectly watchable movie. Serviceable performances all around. Rami Malek in particular does a great job with what he's given, although that's to be expected from him. The issue here lies in the dialogue. The writing is okay at best, diving into outright cringe-worthy at the very worst. There were quite a few times where I found myself quietly snickering to myself because of just how forced and clichéd the dialogue felt.

The action is decent. It never devolves into outright shaky cam, but most of the action is still shot from too close up and thus becomes hard to follow. It ends up looking like the studio was trying to hide the more grisly aspects of the action, which is never a good mentality to have while shooting an R-rated flick.

On that note, the movie really cannot seem to make up its mind whether it wants to go all-in on the R-rating or scale things back, to the point where it seems like the movie's most explicit moments were added solely to avoid a lower rating. Prime example? Just three scenes in, we're treated to at least eight exposed breasts. Very next scene? PG-13 sex. A few scenes later, an extra gets disemboweled on camera in vivid detail. The movie never comes close to attempting this level of gore again until the final kills.

The biggest issue with the movie, however, is the pacing. The movie is 133 minutes long, but it will quickly start to feel like a 3+ hour ride. Why is this? Well, because the second act is just too goddamn slow. The solitary confinement sequence is admittedly great... until you realize that it just keeps on going without any development being made.

In contrast, other threads are resolved too fast, causing the runtime to feel rather unjustified. This is the one area where I feel the need to compare to the original, as there, the great deal of planning that went into Henri's escapes is shown in detail. Here, they just sort of... happen, and feel rather contrived. And in a film based on a true story, a lack of this type of detail is kind of the worst that can happen.

Overall, it's a perfectly serviceable film, but with all of its issues with pacing, writing, and content, and the existence of the original which is miles better, I can't recommend it to anyone really looking for a good time.
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This isn't a real movie, so don't bother.
cleft_asunder18 August 2018
This is an insulting remake of the 1973 classic Papillon. I don't even want to get into the details because I'm so angry right now. The only reason this movie exists is so that your kids see THIS instead of the original. Back in the 1980's, when I was a kid, we would see all the classics on TV, and it makes you so intelligent and cultured watching those films. The new generations? 50 IQ super hero movies, reboots, CGI porn, and remakes that are shadows of the originals.

Hollywood, you need to stop erasing history. I know what you're doing, and it's not going to work. You're not going to get your global socialist dystopia. You're going to fail to destroy Western culture and history.

STOOOOOOOOOOP. I hate you hollywood. I'm so glad the Indie scene exists to counter your evil.

Btw, Papillon is French for 'Butterfly,' and not 'Escape.'
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twelvechess25 August 2018
This movie is amazing. This is my first and maybe only review. Charlie Hunnam and Rami Malek did a very good job in this movie. Totally worth the watch.
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zia_aftab25 August 2018
Worth a watch every moment from biginning to end. Excellent remake
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Does anyone read anymore?
MovieOG28 October 2018
Do yourself a favor and read the book written by the protagonist. This movie has nothing to do with the original Papillon's story. What a shame! It feels like the director, editor, writers have not even read Charettiere memoirs. Who sold out? I hope the money was worth it.
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Plain movie
ernesthaka12 November 2018
Dialogs are boring, direction is good but for an action movie, the whole thing is not subtle at all, much less interesting and captivating than the original.
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Too heavy, too good
deepakoffline4 September 2018
Don't believe the negative reviews. The movie and everything shown in it is too good. Really liked it. The whole film is a great, one time watch though. If you like real life stories then you will like this. The actors have done an outstanding job. Well done. The direction and everything else is top notch.
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