Suspense is the theme for May in Belfast Free Library’s Friday Night Flix film series. The month features four heart-pounding, edge-of-your-seat thrillers dating from the 1950s to the 1990s. All the screenings are free and take place at 7 p.m. in the Abbott Room of the library, 106 High St.

Kicking off the month on May 4th is the crime thriller “The French Connection” (1971, USA). Popeye Doyle (Gene Hackman) is a dedicated, hard working New York City cop. He’s also short tempered, alcoholic and a bigot. On the other hand, Alain Charnier (Fernando Rey) is a dapper, sophisticated businessman living in Marseilles. He’s also a ruthless European drug lord who will stop at nothing to protect his 32 million dollar shipment of heroine to the United States.

This film’s car chase through the streets of New York City is perhaps the most harrowing scene of its kind ever put on film. “The French Connection” took home five Oscars including Best Picture and Best Actor for Hackman.

The series continues May 11 with Alfred Hitchcock’s “North by Northwest” (1959, USA); May 18, “Marathon Man” (1976, USA); and May 25, “The Silence of the Lambs” (1991, USA).

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.