Nouvelle Vague Cinematheque

Vive Nouvelle Vague! All things french new wave cinema.

Happy 50th birthday Nouvelle Vague!

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Les Quatre Cents Coups (The 400 Blows)

Les Quatre Cents Coups (The 400 Blows)

Although there is more than a little argument about when we should begin charting the history of the Nouvelle Vague, 1959 is the year that Francois Truffaut‘s Les Quatre Cents Coups took Cannes by storm and so 2009 is the year the world is celebrating 50 years of the Nouvelle Vague.

Simon and I love french new wave film.  We watch it, we read about it, we talk to people about it — our shelves are cluttered with the books and box sets we’ve collected, pamphlets from the lectures attended, rolled up posters and 1960s magazines.  I still remember watching Jules And Jim for the first time and the profound effect it had on me — discovering for the first time that cinema, far from being simply the medium of Hollywood dreams, can also reflect life back at us in a way that digs down deep and unearths things from ourselves that we had never before even articulated.

So, I thought, what better time to start writing about the new wave than now, fifty years on?  The internet seems just as good a medium as any to talk about a movement that capitalised of do-it-yourself, off-the-cuff freedom and created a style that still resonates on into the digital age.


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