The Adventures of Antoine Doinel
Edition no. 185
Francois Truffaut's first feature is also his most personal. Told through the eyes of Truffaut's cinematic counterpart, Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Leaud), The 400 Blows (Les Quatre cents coups) sensitively recreates the trials of Truffaut's own difficult childhood, unsentimentally portraying aloof parents, oppressive teachers, petty crime, and a friendship that would last a lifetime. The film marks Truffaut's passage from leading critic of the French New Wave to his emergence as one of Europe's most brilliant auteurs. Also included is Antoine and Colette, Truffaut's acclaimed 30-minute film from the 1962 omnibus feature L'Amour a vingt ans.
The fourth installment in François Truffaut’s chronicle of the ardent, anachronistic Antoine Doinel, Bed and Board plunges his hapless creation once again into crisis. Expecting his first child and still struggling to find steady employment, Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud) involves himself in a relationship with a beautiful Japanese woman that threatens to destroy his marriage. Lightly comic, with a touch of the burlesque, Bed and Board is a bittersweet look at the travails of young married life and the fine line between adolescence and adulthood.
Jean-Pierre Léaud returns in the delightful Stolen Kisses, the third installment in the Antoine Doinel series. It is now 1968, and the mischievous and perpetually love-struck Doinel has been dishonorably discharged from the army and released onto the streets of Paris, where he stumbles into the unlikely profession of private detective and embarks on a series of misadventures. Whimsical, nostalgic, and irrepressibly romantic, Stolen Kisses is Truffaut’s timeless ode to the passion and impetuosity of youth.
Antoine Doinel strikes again! In the final chapter of François Truffaut’s saga, we find Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud), now in his thirties, convivially concluding his marriage, enjoying moderate success as a novelist, and clinging to his romantic fantasies. The newly single Doinel finds a new object of his affections in Sabine, a record store salesgirl whom he pursues with the fervid belief that without love, one is nothing. Along the way, he renews his acquaintance with previous loves and confronts his own chaotic past. In Love on the Run, Antoine Doinel is still in love and because he’s still in love, he’s still alive.
Through five films (and two decades), Antoine Doinel captivated audiences around the world with his exploits. Collected here are materials that illustrate how Doinel came to be, from early theme-defining work to insights into the creative processes of the filmmakers.
- Audio commentary by film scholar Brian Stonehill
- Audio commentary by director François Truffaut’s lifelong friend Robert Lachenay
- Rare audition footage of Jean-Pierre Léaud, Patrick Auffay, and Richard Kanayan
- Newsreel footage from the film’s showing at Cannes
- Excerpt from a 1965 interview with François Truffaut in which he discusses his youth, his critical writings, and the origins of the character Antoine Doinel
- Excerpt from a 1960 interview with François Truffaut about the global reception of The 400 Blows and his own critical view of the film
- Theatrical trailer for The 400 Blows
- Introduction by film historian Serge Toubiana, discussing the genesis of the film and the tumultuous events surrounding the 1968 removal of Henri Langlois as director of the Cinémathèque française
- Excerpt from the TV show Cinéastes de notre temps: François Truffaut, dix ans, dix films in which François Truffaut discusses his vision of the Doinel cycle, and the complex relationship between Doinel and actor Jean-Pierre Léaud
- Archival newsreel footage of the "Langlois Affair," documenting protests by Truffaut and other French film industry luminaries against the removal of Cinémathèque française director Henri Langlois
- Promotional spot featuring Jean-Luc Godard and François Truffaut appealing for public support of Henri Langlois
- Newsreel footage of François Truffaut
- Theatrical trailer
- Rare behind-the-scenes footage with François Truffaut at work on the Bed and Board set, and being interviewed along with actress Claude Jade
- Excerpt from the 1970 TV program Cinéastes de notre temps: François Truffaut, dix ans dix films, in which François Truffaut and co-writer Bernard Revon reveal their methods for generating scripts and developing ideas
- Rare television interview with Jean-Pierre Léaud discussing his feelings about Truffaut and Antoine Doinel, and his thoughts about "ending" the series
- Excerpt from the 1972 documentary Approches du cinéma: François Truffaut ou la nouvelle vague, in which François Truffaut addresses the complexities of Antoine Doinel
- Theatrical trailer
- Rare television interview excerpt of François Truffaut and actress/co-writer Marie-France Pisier discussing their working styles and their feelings about Love on the Run
- Excerpt from the 1980 TV show Cinescope in which François Truffaut addresses his misgivings about his finale to the Doinel series, and illuminates his feelings about Jean-Pierre L
- Theatrical trailer
- Truffaut's early short film, Les mistons
- Audio commentary for Les mistons by assistant director and future co-writer Claude de Givray
- Audio/visual "primer" for Les mistons by film historian Serge Toubiana
- Working with François Truffaut: Claude de Givray and Bernard Revon, An exclusive re-edited version of a 1986 interview with Truffaut co-writers Claude de Givray and Bernard Revon, originally conducted for Rainer Gansera's documentary Arbeiten mit François Truffaut
- Excerpt from the rare documentary François Truffaut (1961) featuring François Truffaut discussing his influences and beginnings, along with Les mistons and The 400 Blows
- Interview from the 1981 French TV show Champ contre champ in which François Truffaut discusses Jean-Pierre Léaud, and the challenges of creating films that are intensely personal, yet popular in appeal
- Promotional art gallery for The 400 Blows, Stolen Kisses, Bed and Board and Love on the Run
- 72-page book, featuring a comprehensive assortment of François Truffaut's own notes, outlines, and treatments for the five Doinel films, along with essays by Annette Insdorf, Kent Jones, Andrew Sarris, Noah Baumbach, and Chris Fujiwara