The most autobiographical of Truffaut’s films, The 400 Blows follows a few months in the life of 12-year-old Antoine Doinel (Léaud) who, misunderstood and mistreated by his neglectful parents and repressive schoolteachers, seeks refuge in truancy, petty crime, and the cinema.
The film’s French title actually means ‘raising hell’, and Antoine’s rebellion against rigid social norms, breaking out from the confinement of stifling classrooms or his parents’ cramped flat, is exhilaratingly captured in Henri Decaë’s lyrical location shooting on the streets of Paris
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