The Bride Wore Black
The Bride Wore Black is a 1968 French film directed by François Truffaut and based on the novel of the same name by William Irish, a pseudonym for Cornell Woolrich. It stars Jeanne Moreau, Charles Denner, Alexandra Stewart, Michel Bouquet, Michael Lonsdale, Claude Rich and Jean-Claude Brialy, it is a revenge film in which a widowed woman hunts the five men who killed her husband on her wedding day. She wears black or a combination of the two; as the film opens, Julie Kohler tries to throw herself out of an upstairs window, but is stopped by her mother. Julie is dressed in black and is grief-stricken. In the next scene, she is more composed, telling her mother she is going on a long trip, counting out five piles of money, she gets onto a train. The next time Julie is seen, her hair is different, she is wearing white, looking for a man called Bliss, he is a ladies' man, having a party on the eve of his wedding. When Julie arrives, aloof but attractive, he cannot resist approaching her; when they are alone on the balcony of Bliss's high-rise apartment, she tells him her name and pushes him off the balcony.
Her next victim is a lonely bachelor. She lures him to a concert and they agree to meet the following night. Before their rendezvous, Julie injects a syringe of poison into it; when she meets Coral at his apartment, she serves him the drink. When he collapses in agony, she reveals her identity to him, he begs for his life. In a flashback, there is a wedding procession on the steps of a church. Julie is the widowed bride; the next man is Morane a would-be politician. She follows his wife and young son home, befriends the boy, gets the wife to leave by sending a fake telegram that the wife's mother is ill. Julie poses as the boy's teacher Miss Becker, offers to cook dinner for Morane and his son. Afterwards she plays hide-and-seek with the boy, hiding in an enclosed small closet underneath the stairs, before putting the boy to bed; as she is leaving the house, she pretends. Morane helps her search, she locks him inside. Julie reveals her true identity, he pleads for his life, saying what happened was an accident.
Another flashback reveals that Julie's husband was killed by a rifle shot fired by Delvaux, member of an informal hunting club that included Bliss, Coral and Fergus. The five men were carelessly horsing around with a loaded rifle in an upper room across the street from the church. After the incident, they went their separate ways, intending never to reveal their involvement in the groom's death. Remorseless, Julie uses duct tape to seal the door of Morane's closet, he suffocates to death. Julie waits in Delvaux's junkyard, planning to kill him with a handgun, but he is arrested by the police. Julie moves on to find the fifth member of the hunting group: an artist. Julie models for him as the huntress Diana shooting him in the back with an arrow, she cuts her face out of his painting to remove the only evidence of her presence. When she discovers that Fergus had painted a mural on his wall depicting her reclining in the nude, she gets some paint to cover the mural's face, but changes her mind and leaves.
Julie allows herself to be arrested. She refuses to reveal her motives. Inside a prison, a meal cart is making its rounds. Julie is a prisoner in the women's wing, Delvaux is on the men's side; when Julie works in the kitchen, she hides a knife. When the cart makes its rounds with Julie as one of the attendants, it turns a corner out of our sight. After a brief pause, a man's scream is heard. Jeanne Moreau as Julie Kohler Michel Bouquet as Coral Jean-Claude Brialy as Corey Charles Denner as Fergus Claude Rich as Bliss Michel Lonsdale as Clément Morane Daniel Boulanger as Delvaux Serge Rousseau as David Alexandra Stewart as Mlle Becker Christophe Bruno as Cookie Morane The film received hostile criticism in France on its original release, Truffaut admitted that he no longer liked the film, that the critics were right; the movie received better reviews, has an 80% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. During the 1983 Chicago International Film Festival Truffaut was asked which of his films he would change if he could.
He named this film, saying that it was the first time "we" had worked in color and the emotional tone of many scenes came out wrong. In fact, two years earlier, Truffaut had made Fahrenheit 451 in England in color with Nicolas Roeg as his cinematographer. Clarification became available in 2009, when Robert Osborne introduced Turner Classic Movies' showing of The Bride Wore Black. Cinematographer Raoul Coutard, who had worked with Truffaut on five previous films, had made several color films with Jean-Luc Godard and had his own ideas on shooting. Coutard and Truffaut had multiple day-long arguments, in many scenes direction to the actors was provided by the film's star, Jeanne Moreau. At the film's premiere, Truffaut was tormented by the contrast between the emotional notes he had intended to give the actors and the finished film, but he was too discreet in 1983 to admit the depths of his disappointment or to blame Coutard indirectly. Roger Ebert's review in The Chicago Sun-Times was more positive, giving The Bride Wore Black 3.5 stars out of a possible 4.
He praised Moreau's p
Shoot the Piano Player
Shoot the Piano Player is a 1960 French New Wave crime drama film directed by François Truffaut and starring Charles Aznavour as the titular pianist. It is based on the novel Down There by David Goodis. A washed-up classical pianist, Charlie Kohler/Edouard Saroyan, bottoms out after his wife's suicide — stroking the keys in a Parisian dive bar; the waitress, Lena, is falling in love with Charlie. When his brothers get in trouble with gangsters, Charlie inadvertently gets dragged into the chaos and is forced to rejoin the family he once fled; the film shares the novel's bleak plot about a man hiding from his shattered life by doing the only thing he knows how to do, while remaining unable to escape the past. However, Truffaut's work resolves itself into both a tribute to the American genre of literary and cinematic noir and a meditation on the relationship between art and commercialism. Truffaut changes Charlie's personality in Tirez sur le Pianiste. Goodis' Edward Webster Lynn is "pictured as a strong, self-confident guy who has chosen his solitude Truffaut’s Charlie Kohler has found his isolation inevitably.
Charles Aznavour as Charlie Kohler / Edouard Saroyan Marie Dubois as Léna Nicole Berger as Thérèse Saroyan Michèle Mercier as Clarisse Serge Davri as Plyne Claude Mansard as Momo Richard Kanayan as Fido Saroyan Albert Rémy as Chico Saroyan Jean-Jacques Aslanian as Richard Saroyan Daniel Boulanger as Ernest Claude Heymann as Lars Schmeel Alex Joffé as Passerby Boby Lapointe as The Singer Catherine Lutz as Mammy Truffaut first read David Goodis's novel in the mid-1950s while shooting Les Mistons when his wife Madeleine Morgenstern read it and recommended it to him. He loved the book's dialogue and poetic tone and showed it to producer Pierre Braunberger, who bought the rights. Truffaut met Goodis in New York City, where the novelist gave Truffaut a vintage viewfinder from his brief experience as a 2nd Unit Director on a U. S. film. Truffaut said he made the film in reaction to the success of The 400 Blows, which he considered to be French, he wanted to show his influence from American films. He told a reporter that he wanted to shock the audience that had loved The 400 Blows by making a film that would "please the real film nuts and them alone."
He had several ideas for films about children, but was afraid of repeating himself in his second film. He told a reporter, "I refused to be a prisoner of my own first success. I discarded temptation to renew that success by choosing a "great subject". I turned my back on what everyone waited for and I took my pleasure as my only rule of conduct."Truffaut began writing the script with Marcel Moussy, who had co-written The 400 Blows. Moussey said that he didn't understand the book and attempted to establish clear social roots for the characters. Truffaut disagreed, wanting to keep the film abstract. One problem Truffaut had was that he considered the Goodis novel to be too chaste and he decided to make the characters less heroic; the book's main character Charlie is much stronger in the book and Truffaut called it a Sterling Hayden type. Truffaut decided to go the opposite direction and make the protagonist weaker and the female characters strong. Truffaut was influenced by French writer Jacques Audiberti while writing the film, such as in his treatment of the character Plyne.
Truffaut used some scenes from other Goodis novels, such as the early scene where Chico bumps into a lamp post and has a conversation with a stranger. Truffaut had wanted to work with Charles Aznavour since seeing him act in Georges Franju's Head Against the Wall and wrote the role with Aznavour in mind. Child actor Richard Kanayan had appeared in The 400 Blows and was always making the crew laugh, so Truffaut cast him as Charlie's youngest brother. Nicole Berger was an old friend of Truffaut's and Pierre Braunberger's stepdaughter. Michèle Mercier was a dancer. Albert Remy had appeared in The 400 Blows and Truffaut wanted to show the actor's comedic side after his performance in the previous film. Truffaut cast actor and novelist Daniel Boulanger and theatrical actor Claude Mansard as the two gangsters in the film. Serge Davri was a music hall performer who had for years recited poems while breaking dishes over his head. Truffaut considered him crazy, but funny, cast him as Plyne. Truffaut rounded out the cast with Catherine Lutz in the role of Mammy.
Lutz had never worked at a local movie theater. Truffaut first noticed Marie Dubois when he came across her headshot during pre-production and attempted to set up several meetings with the actress, but Dubois never showed up. Truffaut saw Dubois perform on a TV show and wanted to cast her shortly before filming began. Dubois's real name was "Claudine Huzé" and Truffaut changed it to Marie Dubois because she reminded him of the titular character of his friend Jacques Audiberti's novel Marie Dubois. Audiberti approved of the actress's new stage name. Truffaut told a reporter that Dubois was "neither a'dame' nor a'sex kitten', but she's a worthy young girl with whom it's conceivable you could fall in love and be loved in return." Filming took place from 30 November 1959 until 22 January 1960 with some re-shoots for two weeks in March. Locations included a cafe called A la Bonne Franquette on the rue Mussard in Levallois, Le Sappey-en-Chartreuse, around Grenoble and throughout Paris
The Story of Adele H.
The Story of Adèle H. is a 1975 French historical drama film directed by François Truffaut, starring Isabelle Adjani, Bruce Robinson, Sylvia Marriott. Written by Truffaut, Jean Gruault, Suzanne Schiffman, the film is about Adèle Hugo, the daughter of writer Victor Hugo, whose obsessive unrequited love for a military officer leads to her downfall; the story is based on Adèle Hugo's diaries. It was filmed on location in Guernsey and Senegal.20-year-old Isabelle Adjani received much critical acclaim for her performance as Hugo, garnering an Academy Award nomination making her the youngest Best Actress nominee at the time. The Story of Adèle H. won the National Board of Review Award for Best Foreign Language Film, the French Syndicate of Cinema Critics Award for Best Film, the Cartagena Film Festival Special Critics Award. In 1863, the American Civil War is still raging on. Great Britain and France have yet to enter into the conflict. For the past year, British troops have been stationed in Halifax, Nova Scotia checking European passengers disembarking from foreign ships.
The beautiful Adèle Hugo, the second daughter of Victor Hugo, makes it through and takes a carriage into Halifax. Traveling under the assumed name of Miss Lewly, Adèle finds accommodations at a boarding house run by Mr. and Mrs. Saunders. Adèle finds a notary and inquires about a British officer, Lieutenant Pinson, with whom she's had a relationship; that day Adèle sees Pinson at a book shop. When she learns that Mr. Saunders will be attending a military dinner which Pinson is to attend, Adèle asks him to deliver a letter from her—a love letter announcing her arrival. While showing some old photographs to Mrs. Saunders, she talks about her older sister Léopoldine Hugo, who died in a drowning accident at the age of nineteen many years ago just after being married; when Mr. Saunders returns from the dinner, he tells her that he gave Pinson her letter but he did not reply; that night Adèle has nightmares about drowning. The next day Adèle writes to her parents, telling them that she must be with her beloved Pinson and that they are planning to marry, but she will wait for their formal consent.
She spends her evenings writing in her love for Pinson. "I'll be able to win him over through gentleness," she writes. Pinson goes to the boarding house, where he tells Adèle that she must leave Halifax and stop following him. Adèle believes. Pinson knows that her parents do not approve of his heavy gambling debts. Adèle tries to persuade him, telling him that she's rejected another marriage proposal, threatens to expose him and ruin his military career, offers him money for his gambling debts, but he remains unmoved. In the coming days, Adèle continues writing in her journal, convinced that she is Pinson's wife in spirit, she tries to conjure the ghost of her dead sister to help her. One night she follows Pinson to the home of his mistress. Undeterred, Adèle continues her writing, her behavior becomes more eccentric. Mr. Whistler, the kind bookseller who provides her with writing paper, shows an interest in her; as she leaves his book shop, she faints from exhaustion. Mr. Whistler visits her at the boarding house and brings her paper.
Doctor Murdock diagnoses a mild case of pleurisy. He notices one of her letters is addressed to "Victor Hugo" and informs Mrs. Saunders of the true identity of her boarder. Adèle's obsession grows stronger. One day she writes to her parents telling them that she has married Pinson and that from now on, she should be addressed as Madame Pinson. Upon receiving the news, Victor Hugo posts an announcement of the marriage in his local paper; the news reaches Pinson's colonel. After Pinson writes Victor Hugo to explain that he will never marry Adèle, Hugo writes to his daughter, urging her to return home to Guernsey. Adèle responds to her father's letter with more fantasy. Having learned of Adèle's identity, Mr. Whistler offers her a gift of her father's books, she responds in paranoia. She hires a prostitute as a gift for Pinson, she follows him to a theater to see a hypnotist act, where she is inspired to think that she can hypnotize Pinson into loving her. Adèle begins to go mad with despair, she goes to the father of Pinson's fiancée and claims that he is married to her and that she is carrying his child.
The father ends the engagement. She finds Pinson once more, he again rebukes her, calling her ridiculous. After leaving the boarding house, Adèle continues to deteriorate, she wanders the streets in torn clothes talking to herself. In February 1864 Pinson is shipped out to Barbados, a destitute Adèle follows him. Now married, Pinson learns. Concerned for her, Pinson finds her wandering the streets in rags; when he tries to confront her, Adèle does not recognize him. Helped by a kind former slave, Adèle returns to Paris, where the French Third Republic has been established, her father places her in an asylum in Saint-Mandé. She plays the piano and writes in her journal. Adèle Hugo died in Paris in 1915 at the age of 85. Writing about the film, François Truffaut observed: In writing the script of L'Enfant sauvage based on the memoirs of Dr. Jean Itard, we discovered, Jean Gruault and myself, the enormous pleasure of writing historical fiction based on real events, without inventing anything and without alter
Two English Girls
Two English Girls, is a 1971 French romantic drama film directed by François Truffaut and adapted from a 1956 novel of the same name by Henri-Pierre Roché. It stars Jean-Pierre Léaud as Claude, Kika Markham as Anne, Stacey Tendeter as Muriel. Truffaut restored 20 minutes of footage, which fills out the characters, before his death in 1984; the novel was first published in English in 2004, translated by Walter Bruno and published by Cambridge Book Review Press, Wisconsin. The film begins in Paris around the year 1902 when Claude Roc and his widowed mother are visited by Anne Brown, daughter of an old friend. Anne invites Claude to spend the summer on the coast of Wales with her widowed mother and sister Muriel. While she enjoys Claude's company, her hope is that he may be a husband for her introverted sister, who has problems with her eyesight. In the event and Muriel do start to fall in love and Claude overcomes her initial resistance and persuades her to agree to marriage. Madame Roc concerned about their poor health and with the agreement of Mrs Brown, says they must live apart for a year without any communication before getting married.
Returning to France, Claude moves in artistic circles and has affairs with a number of women while Muriel in Wales keeps a diary and becomes despondent. Claude, with his mother's encouragement, writes to Muriel, breaking off the engagement, as he wishes to be free to focus on his art. Muriel is devastated. Anne leaves home to study sculpture in Paris, she agrees to have a non exclusive affair with Claude, enabling him to continue to have affairs with other women, has a concurrent relationship with Diurka, a dashing publisher who takes her off to Persia with Claude's encouragement. Muriel sends her diary, which includes details of her experience of a childhood lesbian event and her consequent prolonged struggle against an urge for masturbation, to Claude, who publishes it against her wishes. Muriel comes to Paris and she and Claude rekindle their love. However, when Muriel is told by Anne of Claude's affair with her, at Claude's insistance, she collapses into deep depression and returns to Wales.
Anne has become engaged to Nicholas but falls ill and returns to Wales, dying among her family with Diurka at her side. Diurka tells Claude. Claude meets her ship at Calais and they spend that night together in a hotel, during which Muriel loses her virginity. In the morning, she says they must now part for as Clause is unsuited for matrimony, despite his renewed offer of marriage, she writes to say she is pregnant, raising Claude's hopes of marriage, but a second letter says she has miscarried and their relationship is at an end. He hears that Muriel has married and is a schoolteacher and has a daughter. Claude turns the whole saga of his relationship with the sisters into a novel, published by Diurka. In an epilogue set in the 1920s, now a successful author, but unmarried and whose mother has died, still dreams of the artistic gifts of Anne and the children he and Muriel might have had. Jean-Pierre Léaud as Claude Roc Kika Markham as Anne Brown Stacey Tendeter as Muriel Brown Sylvia Marriott as Mrs. Brown Marie Mansart as Madame Roc Philippe Léotard as Diurka Irène Tunc as Ruta Mark Peterson as Mr. Flint David Markham as the palmist Georges Delerue as Claude's business agent Marcel Berbert as the art dealer Annie Miler as Monique de Montferrand Christine Pellé asClaude's secretary Jeanne Lobre as Jeanne Marie Iracane as Madame Roc's maidservant Jean-Claude Dolbert as the English policeman Anne Levaslot as Muriel as a child Sophie Jeanne as Clarisse René Gaillard as a taxi driver Sophie Baker as a friend in the café Laura Truffaut as a child Eva Truffaut as a child Mathieu Schiffman as a child Guillaume Schiffman as a child The film received positive reviews.
Disappointed with its reception in France, Truffaut decided to restore over 20 minutes of footage to the film, a project he completed just before he died in 1984. This version was released after his death. Critics such as Tom Wiener believe. MacKillop, Ian Free Spirits: Henri Pierre Roché, François Truffaut and the Two English Girls, London, ISBN 0-7475-4855-2 Les deux anglaises et le continent on IMDb Les deux anglaises et le continent at AllMovie Les deux anglaises et le continent at Rotten Tomatoes
Small Change (film)
Small Change is a 1976 French film directed by François Truffaut about childhood innocence and child abuse. The French title translates as "Pocket Money". In English-speaking countries outside North America the film is known as "Pocket Money"; the film had a total of 1,810,280 admissions in France, making it one of Truffaut's most successful films. Only his films The 400 Blows and The Last Metro were more popular in France. Small Change is a story of the struggles and yearnings of young children in Thiers, France, in the summer of 1976; the main characters are Patrick Desmouceaux, motherless and just starts getting interested in women such as his young teacher, his friend Julien Leclou, who lives in poverty and is physically abused at home. Julien cannot stay awake at school after a night without sleep, refuses to undress in order to hide his bruises; the film mixes the story of these characters with other more or less innocent childhood experiences and challenges of a number of children. Scenes include life at school, a toddler and a cat perilously playing on an open windowsill but falling down unhurt, a girl causing confusion with a bullhorn in an apartment window, Bruno showing his friends how to chat up girls, a double date at a movie theater, a child telling a dirty joke, a botched haircut, first love and first kisses.
In the end Julien's abuse becomes public and he is taken away from his family. The story ends with the message of one of the teachers about child abuse, children's rights, hope and resilience: "Of all mankind's injustices, injustice to children is the most despicable! Live isn't always fair. If kids had the right to vote, they would have better schools. You must steel yourselves to face it. I don't mean "hard-boiled". I am talking about resilience. Time flies. Before long, you will have children of your own. If you love them, they will love you. If they don't feel you love them, they will transfer their tenderness to other people. Or to things. That's life! Each of us needs to be loved!" Most of the characters were not professional actors. Children Philippe Goldmann - Julien Bruno Staab - Bruno Geory Desmouceaux - Patrick Laurent Devlaeminck - Laurent Sylvie Grezel - Sylvie Pascale Bruchon - Martine Claudio Deluca - Mathieu Franck Deluca - Frank Sebastien Marc - Oscar Richard Golfier - RichardAdults Nicole Félix - Grégory's mother Chantal Mercier - Chantal Petit, the Schoolteacher Jean-François Stévenin - Jean-François Richet, the Schoolteacher Virginie Thévenet - Lydie Richet Tania Torrens - Nadine Riffle, hairdresser René Barnerias - Monsieur Desmouceaux, Patrick's father Katy Carayon - Sylvie's Mother Jean-Marie Carayon - Police inspector, Sylvie's father Annie Chevaldonne - Nurse Francis Devlaeminck - Monsieur Riffle, Laurent's father Michel Dissart - Monsieur Lomay, constable Michele Heyraud - Madame Deluca Paul Heyraud - Monsieur Deluca Jeanne Lobre - Julien's grandmother Vincent Touly - Concierge Truffaut had been collecting anecdotes about children since the time of The 400 Blows.
Some of the incidents were autobiographical, like his first kiss. By 1972 the script was only a ten page synopsis. In the summer of 1974 Truffaut became more serious about the project and started developing it further, he and his co-writer did not create a standard script. In April 1975 Truffaut did; the filming lasted from 17 July 1975 until October. The original rough cut was three hours; when released, Small Change amassed critical acclaim. It was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Foreign Film. Vincent Canby of the New York Times called Small Change, "an original, a major work in minor keys" and Pauline Kael described it as, "that rarity, a poetic comedy that's funny." Roger Ebert named it his favorite of the year, calling it a "magical film" and singled out the windowsill scene as "Truffaut at his best." Leonard Maltin gave the movie four stars and called it "wise and perceptive." The film was entered into the 26th Berlin International Film Festival. The film was popular at the box office, in France, the US, Germany and Japan.
It was the 17th most popular film of the year in France. Small Change on IMDb
Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me
Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me known as A Gorgeous Bird Like Me, is a 1972 French film directed by François Truffaut, starring Bernadette Lafont. It is based on Henry Farrell's 1967 novel of the same name. Stanislas Previne is a young sociologist, he meets Camille Bliss in prison to interview her. Camille is accused of having murdered her father, she tells Stanislas about her love affairs. Stanislas, much to the frustration of his secretary, who has a crush on him, soon falls in love with Camille and works to find the evidence to prove her innocent, his secretary tries to convince the sociologist that Camille is a manipulative slut but he cannot be convinced. Through investigation the sociologist and his secretary find a young boy, an amateur filmmaker, who has captured the evidence they need on film to secure Camille's release from prison. Once free, who has always loved music and has seduced the cabaret singer Sam Golden earlier in the film, becomes a cause célèbre and a singing star. Stanislas meets her after a performance and she seduces him at her home.
Camille kills her husband and plants the gun on her passed out paramour. When Stanislas is imprisoned for murder, Camille will do nothing to help the man; as he cleans up the prison in the film's final segment, the camera pans to show Stanislas' secretary typing a manuscript on a nearby balcony the thesis that Stanislas began, but this time preparing one that will expose Camille as the manipulative seductress that Stanislas discovered her to be. Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me on IMDb