The camera & editing work precisely the way form works in a poem. Like Spirit. The pacing, the gunfire narration, relentless as time (and yet the film inhabits my memory as: 3 butterflies coasting, tumbling…) The stylized score, extras elbowing through foreground, mark it as 'Story'; keep it safe from our psychologies. Leaves me awed like the fresco scene in Fellini’s Roma: A breathtaking ache. Utterly a love story.
My favorite Truffaut thus far. It's impact is similar to L'Atalante as, much like that gem, this film's effect gets stronger the further you get from it which is in line with it's theme of life as defined by moments. Jeanne Moreau is truly extraordinary. She is the woman all men crave. She fits comfortably in their demand. But she ,who is La Nouvelle Vague given flesh, refuses to give in and let go of her freedom.
I'd watch anything with Jeanne Moreau, and her character Catherine remains elusive throughout the film. At one point she's even referred to as a "force of nature." You can't go wrong with Raoul Coutard behind the camera and Georges Delerue in charge of the soundtrack.
Lately I'm revisiting Truffaut at various points in his career. I first saw most of these films while young and quick to auteur-worship. Of the four so far screened only The 400 Blows has felt worthy of the director's reputation. I suppose I once loved J&J, but last night I was struck, and vexed, by its shallowness, its reliance on cliche, and its equal remoteness from Renoir's richness and Godard's radicalism.
A moviegoing experience where I found myself bouncing back and forth between trying to stay awake and feeling absolute disdain for Jeanne Moreau's character. One of the most overrated films of all time.
I'm surprised that this film has so many haters. This film captures so well, with so much beauty and warmth what it is like to be young and in love. Truffaut moves me so emotionally in a way no other filmmaker has been able to. Plus Jeanne Moreau is in it, and she is radiant as always.