The 400 Blows
The 400 BlowsLes Quatre Cents Coups
For young Parisian boy Antoine Doinel, life is one difficult situation after another. Surrounded by inconsiderate adults, including his neglectful parents, Antoine spends his days with his best friend, Rene, trying to plan for a better life. When one of their schemes goes awry, Antoine ends up in trouble with the law, leading to even more conflicts with unsympathetic authority figures.
Philippe de Broca
Philippe de Broca
Michèle de Possel
Play Now Les quatre cents coups / The 400 Blows Movie Online
Taglines: Det franske mesterværk om de unge i lømmelalderen..
Antoine Doinel is a vicious and spoiled boy of twelve years old, which can not be dealt with either at school or at home. But are adults making real efforts to rectify the situation for the better? One gets the impression that the child is left to himself for days on end: the mother is only concerned with her personal problems and worries, and the stepfather cannot really influence the spouse in the upbringing of the “intolerable” stepson. And then the “long-suffering” parent can only take the tomboy to a specialized boarding school for difficult teenagers, where no good qualities are instilled.
Teachers crush their indisputable authority and advocate methods of education “whip”, sometimes applying too cruel measures to punish. Children silently shout about their fears, pains, doubts – no one hears them. That is why the boy is less and less attracted to the “state-owned house” – after some time, he, along with other comrades, begins to skip classes, and then completely stops going to classes. Now the company of fun friends has more interesting things to do: theft of goods in the store, escaping from the gendarmes, smoking, alcohol, spending the night in the open. The street “fairy tale” ends with a drive to the gendarmerie: Antoine faces a real term for the committed “pranks”, and only the sea inaudibly calls to itself …
A young boy, left without attention, delves into a life of petty crime.
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.
Creators: François Truffaut, Marcel Moussy
Director: François Truffaut
Star Cast: Jean-Pierre Léaud, Albert Rémy, Claire Maurier
Producer (s): François Truffaut, Georges Charlot
Cinematographer: Henri Decaë
Music: Jean Constantin
Production House: Les Films du Carrosse, Sédif Productions
Original network / Official Sites: Cocinor
Release Year: 16 November 1959 (USA)
Runtime: 99 min
Genres: Crime, Drama
Language: French, English,
Antoine Doinel is a young boy growing up in Paris during the 1950s. Misunderstood by his parents for playing truant from school and stealing, and tormented in school for discipline problems by his teacher (such as writing on the classroom wall, and later falsely explaining his absence as having been due to his mother’s death), Antoine frequently runs away from both places. He finally quits school after his teacher catches him plagiarizing Balzac. He steals a Royal typewriter from his stepfather’s workplace to finance his plans to leave home, but, having been unable to sell it, is apprehended while trying to return it.
The stepfather turns Antoine over to the police and Antoine spends the night in jail, sharing a cell with sex workers and thieves. During an interview with the judge, Antoine’s mother confesses that her husband is not Antoine’s biological father. Antoine is placed in an observation center for troubled youths near the seashore (as his mother wished). A psychologist at the center probes reasons for Antoine’s unhappiness, which the youth reveals in a fragmented series of monologues.
While playing football with the other boys one day, Antoine escapes under a fence and runs away to the ocean, which he has always wanted to see. He reaches the shoreline of the sea and runs into it. The film concludes with a freeze-frame of Antoine, and the camera optically zooms in on his face, looking into the camera.