Tag Archives: Francois Truffaut

401. Close Encounters of the Third Kind

For my final podcast, I look at how Steven Spielberg effectively remade his first feature, Firelight to deliver a message of hope.

400. The 400 Blows

In January 1954, Francois Truffaut wrote a landmark essay on film criticism. Five years later, he put his theory into practice and cinema never been the same since.

396. L’Avventura

With this modernist masterpiece, Michelangelo Antonioni told a story that abandoned its initial plot. Booed at Cannes, it paved the way for a new cinematic form.

394. Amarcord

Like many Fellini films, Amarcord is a contradiction; an account of his youth yet a complete fabrication, a vivid realisation of the past, but also a dream.

390. Cléo from 5 to 7

In Agnes Varda’s classic, Corrine Marchand plays one woman; happy Cléo and anxious Florence, walking about Paris in real time awaiting her medical results.

379. Midnight Cowboy

Released in 1969, Midnight Cowboy mixes avant-garde with mythology to examine male identity, intimacy, sexuality and trauma.

363. Arrival

No matter how cinematic, all films are nothing more than a form of writing that borrows from other forms of writing. Which is why Arrival comes in code.

358. Memories of Murder

Bong Joon-Ho embraced every cliché of the serial killer genre to examine masculinity, institutional repression and national identity.

352. Roma

Alfonso Cuarón has long flirted with the neorealist style. His latest masterpiece, Roma illustrates cinema is not about what you show, but how you show it.

348. The Diary of a Chambermaid (1964)

Of the four adaptations of Octave Mirbeau’s controversial novel, Luis Buñuel’s version is by far the most faithful… and radical.

346. Au revoir les enfants

Most films about childhood are often nostalgic. Louis Malle’s masterful auto-biopic is about loss of an unfathomable kind.

324. Y Tu Mamá También

This drug fuelled tale of two youths and an older woman in search of a mythical beach is really about social connectivity.

322. Yi Yi

As the title to Edward Yang’s masterpiece indicates, Yi Yi is a series of doubles; narrative, thematic, visual and aural, that deliver a subtle family portrait.

308. Wadjda

Precious few films celebrate the joys of riding a bike. Haifaa Al Mansour’s Wadjda is more than just a celebration; it is a dissection of an entire culture.

300. The Wages of Fear

Described as the most evil film ever made, Henri George Clouzot’s masterpiece resembles Hemingway, Hitchcock, neo-realism and Casablanca.

297. A Matter of Life and Death

Francois Truffaut once claimed ‘cinema’ and ‘Britain’ were incompatible. Powell and Pressburger proved him wrong.

288. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg

With his Palme d’Or winning masterpiece, Jacques Demy wove more than a musical. He delivered a socially relevant story worthy of tragic opera.

282. The Leopard

All countries have troubled histories they would rather forget. The Leopard is a masterpiece that admits to those troubles as well as the failure to fix them.

278. The Rules of the Game

Reviled and banned upon its release, then seemingly destroyed and lost forever, Jean Renoir’s The Rules of the Game stands today as a victory for liberalism.

276. Le Mépris

When it comes to making movies about making movies, many directors choose to venerate the medium. Not Jean-Luc Godard. He treats it with contempt.

274. Day for Night

Francois Truffaut created the auteur theory, and with Day for Night he delivered a tribute to the art form without which he felt his life could not make sense.

270. Bonnie and Clyde

When great art heralds great change, it often experiences a difficult birth. Bonnie and Clyde is a seminal moment in American film that almost never happened.

254. Amélie

5 Oscar nominations, 4 Cesar wins, 2 BAFTAs and over $170m at the global box office. So why does Amélie still manage to polarise audiences?

252. Freeze-Frame

Once considered avant-garde, freeze-frame is now common place in every genre. Here are some of landmark and innovative uses of the technique.

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