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#1 hal0000

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Posted 20 June 2009 - 10:44 PM

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François Truffaut, one of the founders of The French New Wave, was a man with a lifelong obsession with Cinema. He was a student of film and literature, not school, and his goals included watching three movies a day and reading three books a week. A Cahiers du Cinema critic under the tutelage of André Bazin, Truffaut viciously attacked French cinema of the time. He eventually became an auteur himself, making one of the greatest debut feature films ever. Truffaut's work is generally considered more accessible and romantic than that of fellow critic and New Wave filmmaker, Jean-Luc Godard. Truffaut's contributions to the theory of his craft are immense, not only developing the auteur theory but also conducting one of the most extensive interviews on his idol, Alfred Hitchcock. Truffaut will always be remembered as a passionate cinephile, and you can see that love in his films.

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Highly Recommended:

The 400 Blows (1959)
Antoine and Colette (1962)
Day for Night (1973)
Jules and Jim (1962)
Stolen Kisses (1968)
Two English Girls (1971)

Also Recommended:

Bed and Board (1970)
The Bride Wore Black (1968)
Shoot the Piano Player (1960)



Honestly, I've only seen 9 of his movies... I've got Shoot the Piano Player on queue, but I hear that's one of his most experimental. If anyone wants to recommend any more hidden gems, I'd appreciate it.

#2 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 10:42 AM

...Honestly, I've only seen 9 of his movies... I've got Shoot the Piano Player on queue, but I hear that's one of his most experimental. If anyone wants to recommend any more hidden gems, I'd appreciate it.


I personally like the film a lot (and recommend it). I do not feel it is that experimental though (looking through some reviews now I definitely see how some thought and I agree that this was inventive). Charles Aznavour is quite good in it. You will notice one scene is quite reminiscent of a similar scene Pulp Fiction. I won't state it here until you have seen the film) and makes me wonder why the disdain of Truffaut from Tarantino (so several films where there are too many coincidences for him to not acknowledge as homages).

I think Stolen Kisses (1968) should be upgraded to Highly Recommended.
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#3 hal0000

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 11:33 AM

I personally like the film a lot (and recommend it). I do not feel it is that experimental though (looking through some reviews now I definitely see how some thought and I agree that this was inventive). Charles Aznavour is quite good in it. You will notice one scene is quite reminiscent of a similar scene Pulp Fiction. I won't state it here until you have seen the film) and makes me wonder why the disdain of Truffaut from Tarantino (so several films where there are too many coincidences for him to not acknowledge as homages).

I think Stolen Kisses (1968) should be upgraded to Highly Recommended.


I think I said this before... but I think Tarantino wants to be thought of as the "most extreme" of modern American filmmakers so he wants to align himself with the more radical Godard (his production company was called A Band Apart for crying out loud). And Truffaut and Godard are the first names that come to my mind when someone says French New Wave (not saying they are the best or most important, but their films are a common starting point for new New Wave explorers), so QT naturally needs to diminish Truffaut's influence if he wants to be thought of as the new Godard.

Bumped Stolen Kisses and added Shoot the Piano Player. I'll bump Piano Player up on my queue now, thanks.

I think by far my favorite Truffaut picture at this point is Day for Night. It's partly a deconstruction of how powerful illusions are (Truffaut is kind of like the Masked Magician, revealing tricks of the trade), but it also shows the pleasure and pain of filmmaking, humanizing the process. I think that title is an onion3. Not only the technique of shooting in daytime, but also the act of going into the cinema itself... we trade day for night.

I guess I've always had an affinity for movies about movies like The Player, Sunset Blvd., Singin' in the Rain, etc. etc....

... Cinema is King.

#4 Phatt XIV

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 02:02 PM

Two English Girls should be highly recommended.

#5 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 03:07 PM

Two English Girls should be highly recommended.


Only if they have nice teeth.

Sorry could not resist. RE: it looks like the R1 of Two English Girls is OOP. It is still at a decent price, but I have no idea of the quality of that release.
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My Criterion Collection (408; I Own and Have Watched):
1-16, 18, 19, 20, 21(2nd), 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51(1st & 2nd), 52, 52, 53, 53, 55, 56, 57, 58, 61, 62, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 81, 82, 83, 84, 85, 86. 87, 88, 90, 91, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 126, 127, 128, 129, 130, 131, 133, 134, 135, 136, 137, 138, 139, 140, 141, 143, 145, 146, 147, 148, 149, 150, 151(1st), 157, 158, 159, 160, 161, 164, 165, 167, 168, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 174, 175, 177, 180, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189, 190, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 201, 202, 204, 205, 206, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 213, 214, 216, 217, 218, 219, 220, 221, 222, 224, 226, 227, 231, 232, 233, 234, 235, 237, 239, 239, 240, 241, 242, 243, 244, 245, 246, 247, 248, 249, 250, 251, 252, 253, 254, 255, 256, 260, 263, 266, 267, 268, 271, 273, 274, 275, 276, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 286, 288, 289, 290, 291, 292, 293, 294, 297, 298, 300(2D), 301, 302, 304, 305, 306, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316, 317, 318, 319, 320, 321, 322, 323, 324, 325, 326, 327, 328, 329, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 339, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 345, 346, 347, 348, 349, 351, 352, 353, 354, 357, 358, 359, 362, 363, 364, 365, 366, 367, 368, 369, 370, 371, 372, 373, 374, 375, 376, 378, 379, 380, 383, 385, 386, 387, 388, 391, 392, 393, 394, 395, 396, 397, 398, 399, 402, 404, 405, 408, 409, 410, 412, 413, 414, 415, 416, 417, 418, 419, 420, 421, 422, 424, 425, 427, 428, 429, 430, 431, 432, 433, 434, 435, 437, 439, 441, 445, 446, 447, 448, 451, 453, 455, 456, 457, 459, 460, 461, 462, 465, 470, 475, 476, 478, 481, 482, 487, 490, 497, 498, 499, 500, 501, 503, 505, 512, 524, 525, 526, 528, 529, 530, 531, 539, 540, 543, 556, 565, 572, 578, 579, 580, 586, 596, 650, 664, 677

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#6 Opale

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Posted 22 June 2009 - 10:44 PM

Saw these:

very good:
Jules & Jim
400 coups
l'amour a 20 ans

good:
Shoot the piano player
Fahrenheit 451

ok:
Mississippi mermaid

looking foward to see the rest of antoine et colette saga + wild child

#7 Phatt XIV

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 07:40 AM

Only if they have nice teeth.

Sorry could not resist. RE: it looks like the R1 of Two English Girls is OOP. It is still at a decent price, but I have no idea of the quality of that release.


I couldn't get hold of the DVD. I actually watched it online. Not the best viewing experience, but sufficient enough for me to enjoy the film.

#8 marcusbulbous76

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 07:47 AM

Two English Girls should be highly recommended.


Only if they have nice teeth.


That's not very discriminating of you. What if one of them had goiter, or was an insufferable braggart?

#9 clydefro

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 08:41 PM

Ignoring Phattz' admitted illegality, I typically find Truffaut to be the most vital of the French New Wave directors. His films burst with love for the cinema that made them, kissing the hand that feeds him whereas some of his contemporaries seemed to strive for reinventing something that had no need to be so radically altered. From the gentle audacity of The 400 Blows to an embracing of Hollywood cinema with Shoot the Piano Player (not experimental at all) that nonetheless flickers beautifully into French romanticism, Truffaut may be the ultimate hybrid combining the strengths of the two nations' output. His Jules and Jim, while hardly my favorite, is really the dynamic stylistic explosion showing the kind of chops he was capable of utilizing but almost never did. Truffaut instead reasserted his foremost obsession for the movies over and over again, whether in homages to Hitchcock or the obvious love letter to the filmmaking process of Day for Night. Even so, he still managed to leave yet another mark in films like Small Change and The Wild Child where an entirely separate interest, still humanistic but now refined into subjects otherwise unique from the typical Truffaut protagonists, is revealed.

It's unfortunate that so many of Truffaut's apparently key films (ones I've not seen) haven't been released to R1 DVD and I wonder with the best of intentions whether Criterion has anything planned given how much attention Godard has been given in comparison.

And, of course, Truffaut also gave Nicholas Ray that lovely title of the "poet of nightfall" which is such a brilliantly fitting moniker.

#10 hal0000

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 09:05 PM

... or the obvious love letter to the filmmaking process of Day for Night...


What I love about Day for Night is that the picture is not about making a great film, but merely an undying love for moviemaking in general (to quote Ebert: That any movie gets made at all is a miracle). It is not about the director, but it's about the collaborative process and I'm so glad that Truffaut made a movie that acknowledges everyone involved (because, especially in the Criterion camps, the director tends to get so much attention at the cost of everyone else), treating the whole thing like a family rather than a cerebral process. Even the silly things, like getting Julie Baker that mound of butter is incredibly endearing and makes my heart swell with joy. Is it true that Tim Burton's Ed Wood works along similar lines? I've never seen that one because admittedly, I'm not particularly enthusiastic about Burton.

#11 clydefro

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 09:25 PM

I hadn't thought about Ed Wood in relation to Day for Night, but now I do see some similarity. It may be Burton's best film (my favorite without a doubt), and there is that same attention given to crew members other than the director. Really, part of the charm of Ed Wood is that it isn't a biopic at all. The film plays like a celebration of both Wood's myriad tendencies and his relationship with Bela Lugosi. Even if you're not into Burton's gothic sensibility, Ed Wood should be seen.

#12 masterofoneinchpunch

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 11:28 AM

I finished all the extras last night on Day For Night and watched the film the night before. Sometimes extras take a lot of extra time.

Ed Wood is one of my favorite Burton films and there are some similarities between that and Day For Night. Both show a love of film and the filmmaking process. Director Ferrand is much more grounded of course. He is typical of most directors who start off wanting to create a masterpiece, but then with the myriad amount of troubles settle for getting the damn thing done. He dreams of stealing stills of Citizen Kane as a kid, I wonder what Ed Wood would dream of as a kid. Though I would rather watch Plan Nine From Outer Space again then Meet Pamela.

I wouldn't put Day For Night as a favorite Truffaut film, but it certainly is near the top. I like The 400 Blows and Shoot the Piano Player a bit more but I never did quite get into Jules and Jim and Love on the Run would probably be my least favorite because of its derivative nature. There is so much love of film and the filmmaking process that it was such an easy movie to get into and stay enthralled throughout.

So many in-references that I wonder if this film translates as well to a casual movie watcher. Makes a good double bill with 8 1/2 :).
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Previous Editions: 2,
Eclipse: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 23, 26, 33

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