The Story of Adele H (1975)
"L'histoire d'Adèle H." (original title)

PG  |   |  Biography, Drama, History  |  8 October 1975 (France)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 5,342 users  
Reviews: 30 user | 21 critic

Adèle Hugo's unrequited love for a lieutenant.



(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
0Check in

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Video

Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 11 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Romance | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

At the beginning of the 20th century, Claude Roc, a young middle-class Frenchman meets in Paris Ann Brown, a young Englishwoman. They become friends and Ann invites him to spend holidays at... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Kika Markham, Stacey Tendeter
Small Change (1976)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

In the town of Thiers, summer of 1976, teachers and parents give their children skills, love, and attention. A teacher has his first child, a single mother hopes to meet Mr. Right, another ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Georges Desmouceaux, Philippe Goldmann, Nicole Félix
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Two ex-lovers wind up living next door to each other with their respective spouses. Forbidden passions ensue.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Gérard Depardieu, Fanny Ardant, Henri Garcin
Comedy | Crime | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Claude Massoulier is murdered while hunting at the same place than Julien Vercel, an estate agent that knew him and whose fingerprints are found on Massoulier's car. As the police discovers... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Fanny Ardant, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Jean-Pierre Kalfon
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Julie Kohler is prevented from suicide by her mother. She leaves the town. She will track down, charm and kill five men who do not know her. What is her goal? What is her purpose?

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jeanne Moreau, Jean-Claude Brialy, Michel Bouquet
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

In a French forest in 1798, a child is found who cannot walk, speak, read or write. A doctor becomes interested in the child and patiently attempts to civilize him.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: François Truffaut, Jean-Pierre Cargol, Françoise Seigner
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Antoine Doinel is now more than thirty. He divorces from Christine. He is a proofreader, and is in love with Sabine, a record seller. Colette, his teenager love, is now a lawyer. She buys ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Marie-France Pisier
Bed & Board (1970)
Certificate: GP Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Some time after "Baisers Volés", Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud) and Christine Darbon (Claude Jade) are married and Antoine works dying flowers, and Christine is pregnant and gives ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Hiroko Berghauer
Drama | Romance | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu, Jean Poiret
The Soft Skin (1964)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Pierre Lachenay is a well-known publisher and lecturer, married with Franca and father of Sabine, around 10. He meets an air hostess, Nicole. They start a love affair, which Pierre is hiding, but he cannot stand staying away from her.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jean Desailly, Françoise Dorléac, Nelly Benedetti
Stolen Kisses (1968)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

After being discharged from the army, Antoine Doinel centers a screwball comedy where he applies for different jobs and tries to make sense of his relationships with women.

Director: François Truffaut
Stars: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Claude Jade, Delphine Seyrig
Quartet (1981)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Marya finds herself penniless after her art dealer husband, Stephan, is convicted of theft. Marya accepts the hospitality of a strange couple, H.J. and Lois Heidler, who lets her live in their house.

Director: James Ivory
Stars: Alan Bates, Maggie Smith, Isabelle Adjani


Complete credited cast:
Lt Albert Pinson
Sylvia Marriott ...
Mrs. Saunders
Joseph Blatchley ...
Mr. Whistler
Ivry Gitlis ...
Louise Bourdet ...
Victor Hugo's servant
Cecil De Sausmarez ...
Mr. Lenoir
Ruben Dorey ...
Mr. Saunders
Clive Gillingham ...
Roger Martin ...
Doctor Murdock
M. White ...
Colonel White (as Mr White)
Madame Louise ...
Madame Baa
Jean-Pierre Leursse ...
Black penpusher


Halifax, 1863. A young woman, Miss Lewly, comes to Halifax to search for Lt Pinson, with whom she is madly in love. Actually, she is Adèle Hugo, the second daughter of the great French literary figure and statesman. The Lt Pinson does not answer to her love and makes her understand it is hopeless. But as her obsession grows she keeps chasing and harassing him. This film about passionate yet obsessive love and self-destruction is based upon the real diary of Adèle Hugo. Written by Yepok

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


PG | See all certifications »





Release Date:

8 October 1975 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Story of Adele H  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Gitlis (as the hypnotist) dismisses his Chinese assistant so he can discuss in private with Adele. He allegedly talks to her in Chinese, but actually tells her in Hebrew to get lost. See more »


The hypnotist has a plant in the audience pretending to be a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, which was not set up until a decade after the story's setting of 1863 See more »


Adèle Hugo: I'm your wife. Forever. We'll stay together until we die.
See more »


Featured in The Peculiar Memories of Bruce Robinson (1999) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A quietly haunting film with a staggering performance from Adjani
28 November 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

"I'm still young and yet it sometimes seems to me that I've reached the autumn of my life." This tragic statement, taken from the diaries of Adele Hugo, daughter of Victor, is both the doomed statement of a young girl driven mad by love, and an ironic testament to the performance of a then 20 year old Isabelle Adjani. Francois Truffaut takes us back to 1863, with the American Civil War in full swing, and France and Great Britain still undecided in participation. Young Adele Hugo arrives at a camp in Nova Scotia seeking out her great love Lieutenant Pinson (Bruce Robinson), who she had embarked on a love affair with and whose potential marriage had been frowned upon.

What may have become a rather frustrating depiction of a desperate woman in love, Truffaut takes special care to create an air of Greek tragedy, as we witness the emotional deterioration of our protagonist, and her desperate pursuit of the unwilling Lieutenant Pinson. Adjani, simply unnervingly beautiful (seriously, how do the French keep doing it?), gives everything to the role. Adele herself, as depicted in the picture, is a time-bomb of emotions, giving every ounce of her strength into the tidal wave of pure love she feels - possibly a result of her father's grand romantic poems and novels - so anything less from Adjani wouldn't haven't done Adele justice.

This is a different kind of work to what I've previously seen from Truffaut - I'm more familiar with his New Wave productions. Adele H. is filmed in dark lighting, acting almost like a character itself signifying the darkness clouding in Adele's emotional torment. Victor Hugo's presence can be felt throughout the film, although he is never seen. Adele's story was taken from her diaries and the frequent letters she wrote to her parents, both of whom were concerned for her well- being. She attempts to keep her identity a secret, but friends are shocked when they uncover her secret, and the film works almost as a testament to Victor Hugo, a bow to his sheer immensity. But whether this is an ode to tragic intellectualism, or a human story that grabbed Truffaut's heart, I'll never know, but this is a gently haunting tale, and one that will make you want to personally open the eyes of Adele to the possibilities that are all around her, were she not so swept away by madness and love.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Beautiful and Touching! Armitaged
Kill Bill! mothboy88
Im from Halifax... viewtifuljoe1010
the book bombalurina1
Isabelle Adjani was robbed of an Oscar ryanryanmd
Discuss The Story of Adele H (1975) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: