Video Review

The 400 Blows

MPAA Rating: Unrated
EW's GRADE
A

Details Movie Rated: Unrated; Genres: Drama, Mystery and Thriller; With: Jean-Pierre Leaud

In The 400 Blows, twelve-year-old Antonie Doinel (Jean-Pierre Leaud) plays a misunderstood kid, unloved at home and mistreated by anyone older than himself, in Francois Truffaut's autobiographical tale. Sweet but never sentimental in its portrayal of it truant antihero, the film helped usher in the French New Wave. Its closing show — a freeze-frame of the haunted Antoine on the beach, staring out at us — is one of the most famous in movie history. But it's there by luck: Truffaut, broke, had merely run out of film, and his editor suggested just stopping the movie. In black and white. A

Originally posted Sep 28, 1990 Published in issue #33 Sep 28, 1990 Order article reprints