French Noir on MHz Choice

(Photo: a scene from ‘Recipe for a Killing.’ Source: MHz Choice)

Fans of film noir, crime dramas and suspense thrillers may want to check out Suite Noire, a hard-boiled eight-episode anthology series debuting this Tuesday, March 3, on MHz Choice.

Each of the one-hour shows, which originally ran on the France 2 channel in 2009, is based on a novel from France’s multi-author Suite Noire book series, which published 36 titles from 2006 to 2009. And each of those titles were done in tribute to specific works in France’s Black Series, which has published more than 2,900 titles since 1945.

MHZ Choice’s first Suite Noire episode, “Recipe for a Killing,” was written and directed by Emmanuelle Bercot, based on a 2006 novel by Chantal Pelletier, which was an homage to the 1956 novel Shoot the Piano Player by David Goodis.

The episode serves up healthy portions of both food and murder. In the following scene, an abusive old winemaker (Nils Arestrup) takes issue with how his young cook (Julie-Marie Parmentier) make his green beans:

Shoot the Piano Player was itself adapted into a classic 1960 French New Wave crime drama of the same title, directed by François Truffaut. Here’s a scene:

If your local library participates in Kanopy, you can stream Shoot the Piano Player for free. It’s also available with a Criterion Channel subscription, for $2.99 with an Amazon Prime subscription, or for $3.99 from iTunes and Amazon.

MHz Choice, which will unveil new episodes of Suite Noire on Tuesdays through April 21, costs $7.99 monthly after a seven-day free trial. But through this Sunday, March 1, you can get 50% off the first six months by using the promo code WORLD20. For a device list, to learn what other subtitled international series are available, or to subscribe, visit

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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