The 400 Blows (1959)

  • This is one of those movies I find it almost impossible to write about, because to me, it is perfection. How do you rave about perfection, without it being boring? No matter how many tremendously positive words or phrases I come up with to praise and describe this movie…I will never be able to do it justice, and that makes me sad. The only way to describe to someone the beauty & marvelousness of a movie like this is to actually sit them down & make them watch the movie. That’s the only way the perfection accurately translates.

I do have favorite moments, though:

  • The entire opening sequence.
  • Antoine (Jean-Pierre Léaud) breaking the ice in the fountain to wash his face.
  • “She’s dead.”
  • “Eureka! I’ve found it!”
  • That one kid is a little shit, and I love the facial expression he makes when the entire class has ruined his glasses. That expression is all kinds of perfection.
  • Sourpuss: “Did you take him to the principal?”

Kid: “No, he ran away.”

  • Antoine and René (Patrick Auffay) running down those grand steps and yelling “Bonjour ma’am!” to that man.
  • Antoine and René stealing an alarm clock out of a women’s restroom and it going off later on. (Glorious touches, though I don’t exactly know why.)
  • I love the brownness of Antoine’s eyes in the brief movie-watching scene.
  • That one time when Antoine handcrafts a cigarette out of materials he finds in his pockets after being thrown in jail. He’s like…12! What a badass.
  • It is SO GODDAMN ADORABLE how René practically runs through the gates when he goes to visit Antoine. And Antoine’s face when he sees him. That makes me cry.
  • That long shot towards the end of him running, and running, and running.

  • The only other things I have to say are about René’s living situation.
  • Pet count: 6 cats, 1 full (dead) horse.
  • You know it’s a bad sign when you walk into your 12-year-old son’s room and your first exclamation is: “It’s like a gambling joint.”
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