MovieChat Forums > Le Doulos (1962) Discussion > Who was a police informer?

Who was a police informer?

Silien or Therese? Or both?

I always believed that Silien was the weasel. But many comments and reviews see him as the honest guy. I haven't read the novel.


I think it is deliberately left unsolved. It depends on whether you believe Silien's story or not.

- This comment is most likely authentic and fairly close to what I intended to say -


Certainly depends on if you believe Silien's story. The entire movie we are led to believe he was the informer because of the brief scene where he picks up the payphone and asks to speak to the police.

After the entire film (up to the last 10 min) Silien is the informer according to Maurice. We even see a scene of him at the police station saying that he told Salignari information, but that he wasn't a snitch.

He then come to Maurice saying it was Terese the entire time and he met her through Salignari. While it fits from the information we've been given in the narrative, we still know what Silien is capable of. He fooled Fabienne into thinking she heard gunshots implying two innocent of murder. He set up the crime scene in the Cotten Club.

At the same time, you have to wonder what his motives are. Why go through so much trouble to get Maurice out? He claims it's because they are true friends. Was it some twisted plan to get Fabienne to leave the mobsters? To get out of the game?

In the end, I belive Silien's story, but I think that's what's so interesting about this movie. The crux of the narrative relies on his story. We MUST believe him or what's left.

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How can you NOT believe Silien? His revelations are the whole movie. And the way it's presented is gut wrenching. You're hearing it from the perspective of a guy who got it ALL WRONG.

I was trying to figure out what in the world was going on all throughout this story. Then Silien straightens everything out, for better or for worse.

So powerful.


Disagree, didn't buy Silien's story. He's without a doubt a ruthless criminal and lies constantly.

There's the phonecall to the detective, why would he make that call ? Also, Maurice's girl looked honest.

As for why go through all the trouble of getting Maurice out my explanation is in Silien's words when he's interrogated by the police. He tells them he won't help them catch Salignari's killer because it's personal, he wants to do it himself and make him pay. I think Salignari was a close friend of his and he felt partly responsible for his death because he gave the tip for the robbery.

I think there is no right or wrong, a case can be made both ways and that's a technique I love in films. It's so hard to get right though, no wonder Tarantino loves the screenplay.


Yes goodvibe61 is right. Anyone who doesn't understand that will have to watch the film again.


It was Silien. We see him call Salignari before he goes to Therese. He binds and gags Therese and shortly after Salignari and his men besiege Maurice and Remy. There was no motive for Therese to inform and the call we see Silien making has no significance if he's not the informant. I think Silien wove a story in order to remove the informant label from him name so that he could retire without his former criminal colleagues looking for him to kill him as an informant. His account is made more plausible by being there to rescue Maurice.

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Silien tortured Therese to find out where the robbery was taking place, then disposes her body. But, people "believe" Silien was a good guy.


Thérèse was a police informer. Silien knew it from Salignari. When he delivered the Tools that Maurice and his accomplice needed for the job he understood that she might have informed Salignari, whom he called to learn whether The police officer was on something that night. The answer being positive he came back either to warn Maurice, who was already off, or to obtain from Thérèse the address where the robbery was to take place. He rescued Maurice and later killed Thérèse with Jean's help. But it is also true that all characters are ambiguous.