Tricheurs (1984) - full transcript

Elric has a gambling addiction: from casino to casino, he plays the roulette table, consumed by a twisted mix of intense pleasure and desperation. His encounter with Suzie throws his life into turmoil, but instead of curing his pathological passion, Suzie also falls prey to the game. Prisoners of their destiny, the couple plunge into another, more dangerous world, that of professional con artists.


Here, take it all.

Take it.

That all you got?

Just enough for a pear.


You're so lucky
I agreed to work with you!

I gave you the addresses.
It was my idea.

It was not!

- You're a bad loser!
- What?

You go back on your word.
You don't know what you want!

- I've had it!
- You never listen.

- Then you get mad!
- What?

I'm through working on those terms.

Don't start haggling again.

- It's 5% or nothing.
- Nothing!

OK, that's that.

Finish your work before we leave.

- Waiter!
- Allow me. It's on me.

- No, I'll pay.
- May I?

Better count it.


Seven! It's incredible.

Look at the 7.

Wait for me a second.

- Don't move.
- OK.

The price you gave me last time.

It's the same one.


You didn't wait.

Let me buy you dinner.

I forgot... This is yours.

That's where she is.

It's because of her I come every day.
She's a beauty.

She's an old mistress.
I can't get rid of her.

Maybe someday...
Come meet her.

Play the 7 until it comes up.

- No dinner?
- No, I'll be right back.

No more bets.

Too late, miss.
Next turn, please.

I'm sorry.

Another $1500 for madame.

- You OK?
- 7 came up twice.

I knew it. Keep it up.
Beginner's luck.

I don't want to.

You can also play the even money:
Low, high, red and black.

I'll bet on red.

No more bets.

1, red. No bet on the number.

$1000 to red.

Let it ride. It may be the start
of a red series.

Place your bets.

No more bets.

36, red.

That guy's lost a fortune this week.

He's doing better tonight.

Place your bets.

- No more bets.
- I don't feel well.

I can't take this. It's too much.

11, black.

- Want to get some air?
- I'd like that.

- For the staff.
- Thank you, sir.

Pity... Just as I was about to win.

You did well tonight.

Yes, in your casino.
It's about time.

That's yours.

See you tomorrow.

- I want to go home.
- Good night.

I'm staying in that hotel.

Good luck.

This is number 7, Suzie.

What time is it?

Noon. That money isn't mine.
You won it.

I insist.

We could meet at 6:30.

In the bar, at your hotel.

I believe we've met.

I don't think so.

May I?

My name's Jorg.

I've watched you in many casinos.

I'm a gambler, too.

Most people don't know how to lose.
You do!

Thanks, but when you gamble big,
you lose big.

With me, people always win.

Really? I'd like to know your system.

Your friend... Am I intruding?

I don't know him! He's crazy.

See? I had it embroidered this morning.

I have an amazing request:

Give me a week of your life.

A week? For you?

Entirely for me.

You've agreed.

I said nothing.

I've already reserved a room for you.

What's this assignment called?

Being a mascot, a good luck charm,

whatever you want to call it.

Play the limit on 22.

You've lost 3 times on 22!

Then do what you want.

I'll play red.

No more bets!

22, black.

That was your fault.

No more bets!

5, red.

I think it's yours, miss.

Place your bets.

That croupier is odd.

- That's all you have left?
- And you?

I'll go play baccarat.
One banco and I'll be even.

Excuse me.

Place your bets.

No more bets.

- Change for $10,000.
- You're too late!

34, red!


Straight on, $5600, sir.

And my change?

So you won?

Go get the rest of the money at the hotel.

- You lost.
- Yes.

Go to the hotel. I'll wait for you.

You're crazy.

You had no luck tonight.

Who cares?

You're right.
Life has no meaning.

I'll drink to that!

All the champagne Mr Elric wants.

I can't stand it.

They ought to cut off my hands.

The fingers... one by one...

I'm the one who ought to do it!

Be no use.

You'd pick up the chips in your teeth.

Go away...

You want to win?

I don't even know if I do.

Some people want to lose.
Know that?

Yes. Do I want to lose?

I don't know.
With me you'll always win.


Don't tell anyone.

Meet me there tomorrow at 3pm.

About the girl: Better dump her.

Women and gambling don't mix.

The girl?

Leave that alone!

Fake passports?

Several identities?

So what?
Must we always be the same?

To me, a name on a face means nothing.

I need to change.

You say you want to stop
gambling and buy a castle.

Why a castle?

Because of the land.

Do you live with anyone?

No one in particular.

Why not?

You don't even see me.

That's what you should kiss:
The number 7.

I do see you a little.

- Staying?
- I don't know.

You in shape?

For what?

To gamble, of course.

I'm always in shape for that.
What's it all about?

Meet Aldo and Buddha.

Never mind their real names.
Outside, we don't know each other.

- Who knows you're here?
- No one.

Dumped the girl?

I've dumped no one
and I don't like that kind of talk.

You told me you always win.
I want to hear how.

I place my bet right after
the number comes up.

I play after it stops!

Get it, man? I can't lose!

Is that all you've come up with?
You kidding me?

It's a question of skill.

At first, it was easy.
I even did it alone.

Then other jackasses tried.
They lacked the reflexes.

Now all the casinos know the system.

There's no room for amateurs.

There are only 2 or 3
professionals in the world,

and I'm the best.

I'm the sharpest, the greatest!

I'm the king! Right?

I know. It's called "topping".

- Where do I fit in?
- You're an ideal cover.

You're known as a big plunger.
You lose fortunes.

With you, we can go all out.

What do I have to do?

Come here.

You stand there... Buddha there...

Aldo there... and I'm here.

This is the wheel, that's the table.

The ball must drop in one
of the numbers in front of me,

and in the half of the wheel
I can see from here.

At that instant, Aldo and Buddha
each distracts a croupier,

and I bet.


I bet...

and you collect... That's all.

You see how easy it is.

We split it up evenly.

Well, are you in? It's a deal?

I'm a gambler, not a cheat.

My friend, cheating

is the continuation of gambling
by other means.

As to the girl:
Don't worry, we'll use her too.

How long will you put up with me?

A while... Maybe.

So you get a cut.

- Of what?
- The winnings.

I'm trying something new.
If it's to work, you must do as I say.

Ask no questions, now or afterward.

- OK. What do I do?
- You simply play what I play.

No more bets.

16, red.

Excuse me, but I don't get it.

Too late, sir.

31, black.

- It's ours.
- No! Look!

$14'000 for the lady,

$14,000 for the gentleman.

- What do I do?
- You stop.

And you?

Leave it to me.

2 and splits.

Nothing on the number.

- You'll go broke!
- Take your money and get out!

Very well, I will!

You're sick, Elric. Let's go home.

- No, I have to see someone.
- I'll go too.

No way, I have to see him alone.

I really don't get it.

I tell you it's a private matter.

Wait 5 minutes for me.

There's the son of a bitch.

A drink for my buddy.

I don't drink.

Yes, you do, my friend.
We'll drink to your triumph.

20 grand gone up in smoke.

You do that often
with other people's money?


I said no.

And I say drink!

Cut it out!

- That's enough!
- Not for me.

They're not gamblers.
They can't understand.

Maybe I'm dumb,

but this man doesn't belong in our outfit.

It's him or us.

Fine! It's him.

All right. My money.

Your money! Just a moment, Aldo.

I've always played fair.

- What's going on?
- Here's the other one.

I told you to wait for me.

I heard shouting.
I wanted to know why.

You're going to find out.

That's my purse.

We're taking our cut.

That's my money!

Yours? Ask him if it's your money.

Come on, Buddha.
Fair's fair. See you.

- That was your private matter?
- I can explain.

I see it all now:
You used me, that's all!

You don't understand.

I've been had again, like an idiot!
See you around.

Let her go.

I have to talk to her.

You owe me something, don't forget.

We'll settle our business first.

Man, you and I, we're going
to do big things together.

All the casinos in the world.

We'll break all the banks.

Pack your bags.
We're leaving right away.

All right.

But she comes too.

- No message?
- No, sir, no message.

The lady took a cab.
She was taking the boat.


My baggage! I've paid the bill.

- Any taxis?
- Of course, sir.

That's the ship.
Quick, it's going to leave!

Is 468 in - Mr Elric?

No, ma'am, he left half an hour ago.
He'd already paid his bill.

He left no message,
no address or phone number?

It's natural to lose.
You're never cured of gambling.

Before I started to cheat, I bet all I had.

I owed money to everyone, lots of it.

I quarreled with all my friends,
even my father.

I'd rather have been a lush or a junkie.

They're luckier than we are.

When they sink too low,

society takes care of them.

They're treated,


Their pushers are punished.

But what does society do for gamblers?

You're talking too loud.

Goodbye, have a good trip.

What's the matter with you?
Still sad?

- I'm all right.
- No, you're sad.

Forget that girl!

I'll find you some real honeys.

Valparaiso's done.

We took them for $20,000.

Cura?ao's done.

Kuala Lumpur.


Atlantic City wasn't much.

We made it up in Vegas.

Now Italy... San Remo.

No more bets.

Excuse me.

It's mine.

Pay me, please.

Sorry, madame, no.



So you're playing.

No, not really.

I just happened to come here.
To buy antique furniture...

But you do play.

You were so absorbed
you didn't even see me.

It's because today's an even number.
I play the reverse numbers,

- 12, 21...
- 13, 31...

You're really into it.

What have you been up to?

I spent a month in Madeira.

You had vanished.

That hurt me.

I'd have liked more details.

You didn't give me time.

- Where are you staying?
- Grand Hotel.

Me, too, since yesterday.

So it's normal for us to meet.

I'm really sorry.

Doesn't matter.

Is it my fault?

You had nothing to do with it.

It's been years since
I've touched a woman.

No more bets.

7, red.

- You bet too late.
- Up yours.


Piss on all you bastards.
You're microbes, slaves!

You're all assholes.
Get away!

All the casinos are thieves.
You'll never catch me.

Two continental breakfasts.

That's right, two.

Elric! Open up!

I know you're there!

I twisted my ankle.

I'm through with this casino,
through with this town.

I lost everything I had.

Say something!

You don't give a damn!

Double-crossing me with that hooker!
After all I've done for you!

It's entirely your fault.

She's to blame!

Is it money you want?

I knew it!
She's turned you against me!

I don't need your lousy money.

I can make it where I want, when I want.

I'm the best.

I'm the king. I'm the greatest.


I have to go.

That's it! Miami!

They've just opened a new casino there.

We can leave tomorrow.



I've had it, Jorg. Everything
we win cheating, we lose playing.

You don't understand.
A new casino!

It's like it was ours, all ours.

It's you who doesn't understand.
Our partnership's over.

- Who is it?
- Breakfast.


We worked well together.

All the wheels we knocked dead.

In Cura?ao,
the manager called me "Loco".

He called him "Frenchie".

Frenchie and Loco: What a pair!

We were known everywhere.
Never one without the other.

What a pair!

That'sjust it. It can't go on.

You're losing your head.
Making nothing but mistakes.

Your blabbing kicks back on me.

It's been fun, but now it's over.

I'm the best.

You're going to need me.

I feel sorry for him.

- How could you work with him?
- You don't understand.

Jorg is a wonderful guy.

A professional cheat?

So? Sure, gambling used to be
a gentleman's pastime.

But what are casinos now?
There's a new one every day.

- No, I'm fond of Jorg.
- Why not stick with him?

Because it was him or you.

And it's you.


Those reversible numbers:
Where'd you learn that?

I met a croupier named Toni in Madeira.

He often gave me unclaimed bets.

Toni... Good to know.

Your gambling scares me.


You won't stop.

It will kill you.

How about you?

Me too, probably.

When you left I realized
I needed you to make me stop.

- And the castle: You still want it?
- More than ever.

When I saw you last night,
I thought "I've got to make it."

What do you think of it?

- It wasn't a dream!
- It is, but it's real. Come on.


There are acres and acres of land.

It's huge.

I'll farm them out,
take payment in produce.

I'll eliminate money.
No more money.

Then you were born here.

Yes. I lived here until I was 11.

It belonged to your father?

No, he just managed the estate...

until he was fired.

What's the matter?

I've got it!

Got what?

The castle.

Remote control!

That engineer, Bashieshev.
If only I can remember where he lived.

I'll make a groove in the ball

and in that I'll put a drop of mercury.

When you work the...

The remote!

...the mercury sticks to
one side of the inner surface,

and the ball drops immediately.



It's a question of time. Four weeks.

And money.

That makes...

In dollars.


I can put in $10,000.

OK. In a month, then.

We'll soon be landing in Madeira.

Look at the casino!

Better forget it for now.
We haven't much money left.

It'll do for 3 weeks,
while we wait for the device.

But only just.

All my credit cards and checkbooks
are too hot by now.

If we start playing...

We can go once.

No, forget it.
I didn't say anything.

Concentrate on just one thing now.

OK. Toni!

It's highly precise.

There's no element of risk.

A few minutes, that's all.

I'm not saying no,
but give me a week to think it over.

Hi, Toni.

May we join you?
Are we bothering you?

Not at all.

- Delighted.
- They're leaving.

They're going to work
in a new casino in Spain.

So it's a promotion.

A dream come true!


Champagne in Madeira!

And French champagne!

What'll your job be in Spain?

Spotting undesirables at the door.


Who are they?

People who win too often.

A croupier's first lesson

is that people who win too often
are cheating.

- Are there many?
- Cheats? Lots.

I've got a bundle in here.
Care to see?

That's confidential!

She's a friend.

What a bunch of faces!

That's the Toad.

This one's

the Greek.

They've all been arrested at least once.

They're pros.

All the casinos get their pictures.

What's that?

The most dangerous ones.

He steals big chips with
adhesive tape under his wrist.

These work as a team.

See this one? Got arrested
in the casino last night.

Uses such clever disguises,
no one recognizes him.

Next time we'll meet
in a more private place.

See you soon.


Well, I think he'll do it.

He told me Jorg got arrested here.


In the casino.

Why was he in the Madeira casino?

It had to happen.

Toni's ready.

The device is ready.

But we're too broke to go get it!

If it's ready, let's hitch.
Go by boat.

No point. Without a stake
we can't gamble.

You lost all we had left!

Listen, I've spent a month
chatting up Toni,

pretending to be charming,
rich, being all smiles,

while you were hanging around here,

practicing your system all by yourself!

You want me to sell my ass for money.

But you're too chicken to ask, you pimp!

Screw you!

Wreck anything,

but not our evening clothes.

I'm fed up!

Let's go for a walk.

The air will do us good.

How can I say such horrible things?

It's only natural.

- What's that?
- The last two.

Sure? You want to go there?

He says the rat is due.

He made you lose last time.

I feel like trying it.

I'll take the ostrich.
Can I have it?

- Why not the rat?
- So go ahead and play it.

If you're against it, I won't win.



I'm an idiot!

Don't dramatize.

I shouldn't have listened to you.

What'll we do?

We'll see. Want a drink?

It's good. Makes you forget.

I see beauty, when I've lost.

The sea, the trees, the clouds,

it's as if I'll never see them again.

When I've won, I notice nothing.

We're better off than people
who feel they should work.

You playing here?

We thought you were in jail.

You stink of wine.

I'm out.

On bail.

I told you: You can't do without me.

Get in.

See you at the hotel!

Where are you going?
Wait for me!

My wine!

I've got my ticket.
I'll be back tomorrow.

I'm not going?

No. You go back to the rich,
in the Palace hotel.

You'll look after our stake.

Get it?

You've cut Jorg in on it?

No, I haven't.

Close your eyes.

In 3 days, or 5 days at most...

the castle.

Can you win $600,000
in the casino in an evening?

Sure. A month ago some Libyans
took out close to a million. Cash!

Then order me champagne,


lobster flamb?,

roast duck,

the works.

I'll miss my plane.

If you tried to, I wouldn't let you.

- So you're screwed up, too?
- Yes, I am.

Think we'll ever love each other?

We do now.

I told you about my friend Elric.

I hear things aren't going well.

What can I say...

The place is losing money,
they want to replace us with girls,

and start American-style gambling.

I've been here 30 years.
That hurts!

And he's close to retirement age.

If Toni had enough money, he'd quit now.

How much is enough?

It's, uh...

It works out to $55,000.

Let's say $60,000.
Round it out.

10%. That's fair.

10%... That means $600'000.

That's more than ten straight
on maximum wins.

No, it'll look suspicious.

They can check it out.

What's the gimmick?


A roulette ball.

Yes. Looks normal to you?

Got your mirror?

Put it there.

All you do is switch balls.

And then recover it.

I can't believe it.

- What?
- That there's no risk.

If we do it once, in one evening,
in a half-hour, there's none.

Why in a half-hour?

Because the croupiers and the balls
are changed every half-hour.

And we mustn't use ours too long.


It's hollow. More breakable
than a normal ball.

If you roll it too hard, stop it too soon,

or if there's a bad bounce, it can shatter.


You can't have it both ways.
It's all we've got.


Not at all.

I'll place the bets,
you work the remote control.

Tomorrow is a gala night.

People will be betting bigger.
That'll help us.

You must be very precise.

Our stake's so small,
we can't afford to lose on the first spin.

Are the stakes high?

Years of happiness!


We'll pick a series of six numbers.

I'll bet on all six,

when the ball reaches the first number,
press the button.


It takes precision.

Control room, please.

The bearded guy at table 4
is winning too often.

Get out his file.

I've never seen him before.

Dr Wilson wants more credit.

- No, he's lost too much.
- Yes, sir.

Again? I'm coming.

- Now what is it?
- A dispute on 5. It's settled.

Don't bother me with disputes,
take it up with the table boss.

Watch the entrance for pickpockets.

Hadn't seen those 2 in ages.
I'll deal with them.

Keep your eyes on those screens!
Even while you're eating!

Seen Toni?

He's on table 3.

You got it? Let the ball circle
3 times before you press.

Mr Elric. A pleasure to see you again.

- It's sparkling, tonight.
- Be seated.

I'll get your favorite wine.
Good luck.


double splits,

and straight on.

- That it?
- It should be.

Ready? Remember the routine?

I press when it passes 3.
Every third time I make you lose.

Then I press when it passes 13,
then 33, so the area changes.

No, it's no good.

I don't like 13. It's 0, 10, 20, 30.

Don't change it all now!

0, 10, 20, 30, that's it.
Here goes.

Place your bets.

In chips of $1000, please.

Put it on 8, 11, 13, 27, 30, 36,

straight on.

You forgot 3 numbers.

I said, 27, 30, 36, straight on.

No more bets.

27, red.


2 straights.
$70'000 for the gentleman.

- For the staff.
- For the staff. Thanks.

Same thing.

8, 11, 27, 30, 36.

And 13.

13 straight on.

36, red.

Same, all combinations, maximum.

On 0, 1 and 2 splits,
7 and all combinations.

- Here?
- No, at the next table.

13, black.

One moment. The bank needs funds.

Congratulations. A magnificent run!
The lady brings you luck!


I must go out.

- Go out?
- Yes, I must. I can't take it.

Go on. Hurry!

The game goes on.
Place your bets.

$2'000 on 13.

17 and splits,
and final 1's by the maximum.

No more bets... 0.

Final 7's by the maximum.

- You're crazy. Stop.
- Beat it!

- Why'd you leave?
- What ajerk!

Double vodka.

- What brand?
- The strongest.

- Want to knock yourself out?
- No, kill myself!

17 and splits!

Love me!

1, red.

17 and splits.

4, black.


Why'd you do that?

I love you.

I want you.

17 and splits.

12, red.

17 and splits.


Coming right up.

Same again.
17, all combinations.


Same bet...

You have nothing left.

Place your bets.

17, black.

Why did you take my chip?

You took my chip.
You shouldn't have.

Why'd you leave...

You shouldn't have left...

To crazy Jorg!

He was right.

Why did you leave the table?

Why'd you leave?


- Leave me alone!
- Drop that knife!

Keep away.

You said you go crazy.
I didn't realize...

- So I'm horrible.
- Yes, horrible.

I love you.

Go away!

No, stop it!

That what you wanted?

I don't care what you've done,
or what you do, I'll always stick with you.

We did it all wrong.

Tomorrow you'll place the bets.

Room 306!

Call for room 306!

Toni called.

He couldn't recover the ball.

What'll we do?

Find it.

It must be somewhere.

It's not in play yet.

If we wait, it'll show up eventually.

We should gamble. It looks odd.

No, we don't have enough.

They're coming.

New ball!

Is that it?

In chips of $1'000 please.

That table's gone broke 3 times!

It's impossible. Yesterday
he won $100,000 on 3 spins.

But he lost it all.

And it wasn't at that table.

The manager.

There's nothing abnormal?

What! No one's ever won like that
2 days running. I'm coming.

- She's cute, too.
- She's with Elric.

Don't worry. He always loses.

Never fails.

Nothing unusual.


- Except what?
- The new croupier.

He's very young.
Can't be much on his record.

$600'000 lost. I'll close the table.

$70'000, madame.

Excuse me. Quiet, please.

Last three plays at this table.

You can go on playing.

Take this to the cashier.

- You have 2 places at another table.
- For once, we'll stop.

But you were really lucky!

I love it!

To Milady's health!

That's sweet.

Maybe somebody's thirsty.

Not bad, being Lord of the manor.

Toni! At this time of day!

- We celebrated all night.
- We must talk at once.

The carpenter came to check the table.

He can keep checking!

They're questioning the new croupier.

They think he was...


Of course, you don't have the ball.

How could I?
They're all in one box!

I can't guess which one it is.

You could!

Ours is different: It explodes!

- What?
- Boom! Right, Suzie?

It explodes!

Won't you have a drink?

If we show you the ball,

could you recover it?

I'll do anything.
I'll find a way.

Tomorrow we'll go to the casino
and indicate it to you.

No, I'll go. You'll never go
into a casino again!

Take the money and
wait for me in Geneva.

- I'll catch the plane the day after. OK?
- Sounds good.

And... my cut?

First, have a drink.

Tomorrow, then, same flight.

You'll be there?

What's wrong? Why so glum?

I have a feeling it's going to go sour.

Happens every time I win.

You don't call this winning.

If I have to open this I'm screwed.
You can't export currency...

It'll be OK. See you tomorrow.

To the airport.

Not so fast, please!

You'll be OK.

Excuse me.

In $100's please.

I don't believe it!

$3'500 for the lady.

$14,000 for the lady.

$14,000 for the gentleman.

- This way, sir.
- My case!

My medicines are in it!

Can't I have my case?

It's him! The Fox!

All casinos are thieves.

Don't hurt him.

Let me go.

You again.


Take him away.

Go on!

Hurry it up!

I was sure you'd make it.

It was you who doubted it.

Especially when the customs
men stopped me.

Luckily, the case had already cleared.

I had a body search: They spot-check
one in 100. It had to be me.

Otherwise it was a nice trip.

- What is it?
- Nothing.

Sure, nothing.

How long does it take
to lose a castle like this?

An evening, an hour.

A castle's nothing, really.
It doesn't matter.

True. It doesn't matter...

Except at a gambling table.

Want to walk along the shore?

I was waiting for you.

Jorg is getting out ofjail.
I talked to the lawyer: It'll be easy.

Seen the boat?

Goes to the new Annecy Casino.

Is that so!

- Nice weather.
- Marvelous at this time of year.

Feel like an excursion?

- On the lake?
- Why not?

Be a lot of mosquitos.

Think so?

Not necessarily.

Even if there are,
mosquitos don't bite me.