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The 400 Blows (1959)

Les quatre cents coups (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama | 16 November 1959 (USA)
A young boy, left without attention, delves into a life of petty crime.

Director:

François Truffaut

Writers:

François Truffaut (scenario), Marcel Moussy (adaptation) (as M. Moussy) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
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Top Rated Movies #208 | Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 7 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jean-Pierre Léaud ... Antoine Doinel
Claire Maurier Claire Maurier ... Gilberte Doinel - la mère d'Antoine
Albert Rémy ... Julien Doinel
Guy Decomble Guy Decomble ... 'Petite Feuille', the French teacher
Georges Flamant ... Mr. Bigey
Patrick Auffay Patrick Auffay ... René
Daniel Couturier Daniel Couturier ... Betrand Mauricet
François Nocher François Nocher ... Un enfant / Child
Richard Kanayan Richard Kanayan ... Un enfant / Child
Renaud Fontanarosa Renaud Fontanarosa ... Un enfant / Child
Michel Girard Michel Girard ... Un enfant / Child
Serge Moati Serge Moati ... Un enfant / Child (as Henry Moati)
Bernard Abbou Bernard Abbou ... Un enfant / Child
Jean-François Bergouignan Jean-François Bergouignan ... Un enfant / Child
Michel Lesignor Michel Lesignor ... Un enfant / Child
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Storyline

Seemingly in constant trouble at school, 14-year-old Antoine Doinel returns at the end of every day to a drab, unhappy home life. His parents have little money and he sleeps on a couch that's been pushed into the kitchen. His parents bicker constantly and he knows his mother is having an affair. He decides to skip school and begins a downward spiral of lies and theft. His parents are at their wits' end, and after he's stopped by the police, they decide the best thing would be to let Antoine face the consequences. He's sent to a juvenile detention facility where he doesn't do much better. He does manage to escape however. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Best Directed Picture Cannes International Film Festival 1959 See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French | English

Release Date:

16 November 1959 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The 400 Blows See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ranked number 8 non-English-speaking film in the critics' poll conducted by the BBC in 2018. See more »

Goofs

When carrying the typewriter, Antoine's hair is mussed, but it is in place when he puts on his hat. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Petite Feuille: Doinel, bring me that. Indeed! Go to the corner!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Love on the Run (1979) See more »

Soundtracks

Balzac
Composed by Jean Constantin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Good movie, but hardly brilliant or a classic
7 October 2015 | by grantssSee all my reviews

Good movie, but hardly brilliant or a classic.

A boy, Antoine Doinel, is often in trouble at school and doesn't get along with his parents, especially his mother. He briefly runs away from home but then returns (or is returned...). After a while he ups the ante and turns to petty crime...

Interesting drama. It also has its lighter side. There are many moments of comedy - the scene with the gym teacher taking the class for a walk was priceless!

However, hardly the classic this is made out to be. Directed by Francois Truffaut, this is regarded as being the vanguard of the French New Wave movement. But it really isn't THAT good. It is hardly profound - the plot is a few weeks/months in the life of a early/mid-teens boy. There is no big realisation at the end, or plot closure.

Even as a character-based film it is not fantastic. Yes, you feel some empathy for and engagement towards the boy but he is more villain than hero. (The adults are hardly saints either, I might add).

Worth watching though, as it is a reasonable story, and to see what all the fuss is about...


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