The French Connection

The French Connection is a 1971 American neo-noir action thriller film starring Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, and Fernando Rey, and directed by William Friedkin. The screenplay, written by Ernest Tidyman, is based on Robin Moore's 1969 non-fiction book of the same name. It tells the story of fictional NYPD detectives Jimmy "Popeye" Doyle and Buddy "Cloudy" Russo, whose real-life counterparts were narcotics detectives Eddie Egan and Sonny Grosso, in pursuit of wealthy French heroin smuggler Alain Charnier (played by Rey).


In Marseille, a police detective follows Alain Charnier, who runs a large heroin-smuggling syndicate. The policeman is murdered by Charnier's hitman, Pierre Nicoli. Charnier plans to smuggle $32million worth of heroin into the United States by hiding it in the car of his unsuspecting friend, television personality Henri Devereaux, who is traveling to New York by ship. In New York City, detectives Jimmy "Popeye" Doyle and Buddy "Cloudy" Russo go out for drinks at the Copacabana. Popeye notices Salvatore "Sal" Boca and his young wife, Angie, entertaining mobsters involved in narcotics. They tail the couple and establish a link between the Bocas and lawyer Joel Weinstock, a major buyer in the narcotics underworld. Popeye learns that a massive shipment of heroin will arrive within two weeks. The detectives convince their supervisor to wiretap the Bocas' phones. Popeye and Cloudy are joined by federal agents Mulderig and Klein.