Tag Archives: French Wave

Film Review: Les Quatre Cents Coups (1959)

Les Quatre Cents Coups (The 400 Blows) is a genuine storyteller. An apology never heard never accepted. A dark sickening life insisting to walk away from everything.
A young lad Antoine Doinel is a confused puppet in Paris of the 1950s. His parents argue and fight, his teacher punishes and complains. He studies but he cannot make his mind. One day he is so disturbed that he quit home and school, and begins stealing.
This 1959 French film is directed by François Truffaut. The best aspect of the film is the tendency, the aptness, the realism of human behavior. The portrayal of characters and their character descriptions are extremely rich and marvelous (especially Antoine’s parents).
This easily is one of the best writings in European cinema due to the fact that ‘The 400 Blows’ was one of the earliest films of the French New Wave uprising. Legendary filmmakers like Akira Kurosawa and Satyajit Ray have considered the film as one of their favorites.
Another legacy is that Truffaut took the character Antoine Daniel with the same boy (Jean-Pierre Léaud) and made four more films on the character’s first love affair (Antoine et Colette in 1962), then another love affair (Baisers volés in 1968), then marriage (Domicile conjugal in 1970), and then separation (L’amour en fuite in 1979).
Highly recommended to all film critics and sensible filmgoers.
Ratings: 9.1/10

Film Review: The French Dispatch (2021)

I want to confess about my writing film reviews that it is always difficult for me to review the films directed by Wes Anderson. It is like a challenge to describe or judge his filmmaking artistry, his scrupulous application on the contemporary aesthetics, and to praise his narrative and visual understanding over the subject on repeat.

His latest work is The French Dispatch; Wes has called his project ‘A love letter to journalists’. And he rightly said so.

The film is about the editorial staff of the newspaper The French Dispatch that wants to republish three articles from the past in what will be the final issue of the newspaper after the death of their editor. So the film majorly picturizes those three articles with an obituary.

As usual, The French Dispatch is another Wes Anderson masterpiece that is thoughtful, artistic, and kaladeiscopic. It is a dark comedy but at the same time, the characterization of human elements like greed, nudity, poverty, power, rage are so well detailed in such an eye-catching camera work.

There is so much depth in artistic detailing. It is so gratifying when you watch a morning sketch of Ennui. Or the introduction of Café Le Sans Blague and the young boys and girls staring at the camera or dancing weirdly gives you a sharp reminder of some stylish retro films of the French Wave. One of the stories about a mentally disturbed artist, Moses Rosenthaler, was like an autobiography of suicide. The reeling towards each of his traveling segments was so well-directed.

The French Dispatch is the voice of liberation that successfully empowers the ethics of humor in the melancholic wisdom of thoughtful articles in the colorful odor of neoclassical realism. A fabulous stellar cast including Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton, Benicio Del Toro, Timothée Chalamet, Frances McDormand, Jeffrey Wright, Adrien Brody, Léa Seydoux, and many more makes this anthology drama more special.

This film is an honorary work in tribute to old-school journalism. Those who love poetry, those who are nonconformist, rebel, advocates of liberalization, and commentators of artistic presentation needs to watch this film. In short, this film is ‘A Work of Art’.

Ratings: 8.8/10