Friday, June 8, 2007

Two English Girls (1971)

Directed by François Truffaut. Starring Jean-Pierre Léaud, Kika Markham, and Stacey Tendeter.

This film tells the story of a young Frenchman named Claude and the decades-long love he had for the two English girls of the title, sisters named Anne and Muriel. While Anne becomes a fixture of Claude's life (and, for a time, his bed), Muriel is more elusive to him, and he finds himself longing for her. This film is based on a book by Henri-Pierre Roche, who also wrote the source novel for Truffaut's earlier JULES AND JIM, and while the two films are similar in the broad outline, I find that TWO ENGLISH GIRLS is lovelier and more delicate, the work of a more mature filmmaker. I first saw this film not long after a pretty rough breakup, which made the longing of the final scenes all the more poignant for me, but even as time as distanced me from this girl, Truffaut's film retains its effectiveness over me, a testament to how great it is.

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