Cast & Crew
Grégoire Duval is a respected middle-aged druggist who lives with his family in a provincial French town. One Sunday afternoon while walking near a lake, he comes upon a girl sunbathing half-nude. Overcome by sudden sexual desire, he tries to make love to her and strangles her when she resists. Undetected, he returns to the company of others who have not noticed his absence. The girl's lover, Sylvain Sautral, an unsavory character shunned by the townspeople, is accused of the crime because of circumstantial evidence. Ironically, Duval is asked to serve as a juror at Sautral's trial. He has no desire to confess, but at the same time he does not want an innocent man convicted. Through some sharp questioning, Duval secures a reenactment of the crime and manages to win an acquittal for Sautral. His questioning causes his wife to suspect him of committing the murder, but she is willing to keep quiet for appearances' sake. The tormented Duval decides to confess, but the authorities refuse to believe him. He meets Sautral and begs him to leave town, but Sautral, who has been unable to stand the taunts of the townspeople, has decided to kill himself. In a scuffle for the gun, Sautral is killed. Again, Duval tries to confess, but the police label the death suicide. His wife arranges for Duval to be committed to an asylum until he can be cured, and Duval, whose life has been shattered by the past events, leaves in the custody of attendants and vows never to return.
Catherine Le Couey
Opened in Paris in April 1962 as Le septième juré at 105 min.
Based on the novel "The Seventh Juror" written by Francis Didelot and published by MacDonald in 1960.
Source material was previously adapted as "The Seventh Juror" (France/1962) directed by Georges Lautner.