Every film from Roger Ebert's "Great Movies" essays.
The 400 Blows
Angel faces hell-bent for violence.
Intensely touching story of a misunderstood young adolescent who left without attention, delves into a life of petty crime.
François Truffaut's feature film debut is an intensely touching portrait of our adolescent years which beautifully captures the day-to-day activities we spent doing for hours despite it being deemed useless by our parents & teachers, the classes we bunked to go for movies or play, the teachers we loved to hate and the many times we were 'disciplined' for the smallest of things.
The 400 Blows is my first stint with this director's works & the elegant manner in which he has unfolded this story before our eyes is sheer poetry. Set in early 1950s Paris, the film is an expertly crafted character study of a young adolescent who's often misunderstood by his peers &, after being left with no attention, delves…
How do you explain what it's like to lose yourself in a film? The 400 Blows describes it particularly well. Francois Truffaut was an expert cinephile, after all: sneaking into theaters via washroom windows, gravitating closer and closer toward the screen so that for a few hours his world was only moving images shedding diffused light on hundreds of faces turned up to the screen.
But perhaps Truffaut wasn't intent on forgetting the rest of the world when he started sitting so close to the screen; perhaps he was simply dealing with weakening eyesight. That would be quite like him and his work, anyway: mundane realities finding their way into cinema in a manner that renders them achingly poetic.
Review In A Nutshell:
So far I have seen only two French New Wave films, and both of them were from Francois Truffaut. The first I have seen was Jules and Jim, which I felt was a bit of a disappointment due to its lack of empathetic characters and lack of drama. The second would be The 400 Blows. I came into this film not knowing how I would feel as my feelings towards the director's works have been like a see-saw, and the hype for this was large but I tried my best not to let that affect my viewing…
Ever since I first noticed Francois Truffaut in Steven Spielberg's Close Encounters of the Third Kind. I quickly figured out that he was a famous French director....but his movies were not known to me at the time. Well over the years I have watched a few of his movies....it took watching The 400 Blows to finally find one of his movies that I liked.
In this one....a 13 year old boy is having a difficult childhood. It seems that he is always getting in trouble. When we first meet him, he is in trouble for passing notes in school....by the end of the movie he is in a detention home for boys. The movie is shot in black and white…
Oh, I lie now and then, I suppose. Sometimes I'd tell them the truth and they still wouldn't believe me, so I prefer to lie.
- Antoine Doinel
François Truffaut is a director who's work I'm still yet to explore. I think the main reason for that is because when I watched The 400 Blows a year or so ago, I wasn't that amazed by it and so decided to find other directors instead. After having watched it again twice since then I can tell you that it's certainly grown on me to the point that I have a few more of Truffaut's films on my immediate watchlist.
The story is about Antoine Doinel, a misunderstood adolescent living in Paris…
"I need some money for lunch, dad. Only 1,000 francs."
"Therefore you hope for 500. Therefore you need 300. Here's 100."
#100 on Berken's Favorite Movies Of All Time
As a standalone - 4/5
As the "pilot episode" of Francois Truffaut's series of movies starring the character Antoine Doinel, introduced here - 4.5/5
(Granted, I haven't seen the other Doinel movies yet, but this one got me genuinely excited to see more of what the character becomes and encounters, which is the most important thing a first entry in a series can do.)
Some scattered thoughts:
1. Just between the quietly thoughtful 400 Blows and Jean-Luc Godard's beautifully unhinged Breathless, it's already clear to me that the French New Wave…
This review reportedly contains spoilers. I can handle the truth.
A very boring black and white French drama with subtitles, which occasional has some interesting scenes.
Five hours, a pharmaceutical vision
Não há palavras para descrever esse filme.Só posso dizer que ele me marcou de tal forma,que eu nunca serei a mesma.
Antoine Doinel is probably the nicest juvenile delinquent you'll ever meet. His spiral into a life of crime is nicely downplayed, resulting from the young man's first intimations that the adults around him aren't worthy of his respect. Truffaut, with one of the most celebrated film debuts in history, displays a terrific eye for the specific details of schoolboy life. That poor kid who loses every page in his notebook because the ink keeps smudging! Then there's the aerial shot of the boys being led through the streets of Paris, peeling off in groups of two or three until only two well-behaved teacher's pets remain. School is prison, but freedom is an empty beach.
Wir haben "Die Lümmel von der ersten Bank", Frankreich hat "Sie küßten und sie schlugen ihn" - jedes Land bekommt den Film, den es verdient...
There was an excessive number of blows.
- 12 Angry Men
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- 25th Hour
- 3 Women
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
- The Godfather
- Seven Samurai
- The Godfather: Part II
- 12 Angry Men
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