This was Jean-Pierre Melville’s first film and it’s a far cry from the other Melville movie I’ve seen, his penultimate Le Cercle Rouge. Where that was a film that oozed cool out of every frame, Le Silence de la Mer‘s primary feeling is seething rage. It’s funny, there’s not a moment of conflict here. Not a shot taken, not a single injury on screen. The only hint of violence we get is the German Lieutenant’s limp. Only a few words are spoken in anger, and they come at the end of the film. But still, it’s full of rage, of the anger of the occupied and the disillusioned. Melville constructs an enthralling tale of resistance out of silence, monologues, and narration. To these three aural modes of discourse Melville adds beautiful images to round out the package. It’s a wonderful little movie that demonstrates the power of resistance even when that resistance is as passive as can be.