Constantine ,Clementi,Versini and the jack of spades.
The jack of spades is a young dark-haired man who is not a good omen. Without any moral principles, the Jack of spades is selfish and does not think about the consequences of his actions.
The "dog of spades" (title of the movie) is another name for the jack of spades.
Anyway,at his best ("Dédée D'Anvers" " Une Si Jolie Petite Plage "and his apex "Manèges") ,Yves Allégret never showed a rosy world ,except for the ending of "les Orgueilleux ,by and large, looked upon as his last great effort .
In the movie, this definition perfectly applies to Robert (Raymond Pellegrin),an ex-con who meets again his old pal Patrick (Eddie Constantine ) ,a former raider who breeds bulls in Camargue.
Most of the scenes were filmed on location ,and there's a good use of the wild Camargue landscape,which gives the movie a French western feel.
The Constantine/Pellegrin pairing is a good one ,even though the latter shows himself "a villain beyond redemption" too soon .To the derivative love rivalry (about the boss's daughter),one can prefer the strange relationship between the gangster and a young man who dreams of the broader horizons of Argentina .This clueless lad is played by Pierre Clémenti in his first important role: a curious case on the French scene ,he turned his back on stardom in the early seventies .
There's also another western recurrent feature: the breeders against the "farmers" (here represented by the rice growers );and eventually too many subplots in a screenplay which leaves a lot to be desired ;the ending ,notably ,is botched ;jazz drummer Moustache bawling out an unbearable "Retiens La Nuit" (which may not be a cover of Aznavour's song written for Hallyday which was a hit only two years later ,but which features ,oddly, snatches of lyrics from this classic)is pure filler.
Apropos of one of Johnny Hallyday's movies: the beginning of his 1963 film "D'Ou viens-tu Johnny ? " was perhaps inspired by that of "Chien De Pique"
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