Monday, August 2

Jules et Jim

In 1955, Francois Truffaut discovered Jules and Jim among a stall's used books, and noticed that it was the first novel of a seventy-year-old. He understood that the lightness and grace of that burning story could have come only after a very long decanting, one that went on for half a century, and from the magic of the "telegraphic style of a poet who forgot his culture and lined up the words like a laconic, stolid peasant," from whence the serial, limpid rhythm of the film. But at times Truffaut stopped a frame, transforming it into a photograph, to show that for all that vitality and spicy dash, we're seeing memories. As happens to Truffaut at other times, he begins a film believing that it will be amusing, "and along the way I notice that only sadness can save it."

-- Daria Galateria
Translated by A. K. Bierman