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At-A-Glance Film Reviews

Stolen Kisses (1968)



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Third in the Antoine Doinel cycle, Stolen Kisses catches up with Antoine just after he is discharged from the military. He's older, but he hasn't really grown up: he wanders from job to job, woman to woman, never distinguishing opportunities for true happiness from happiness of the moment.

It marks a change in the series from the first two films, which had a whole different feel to them, not the least because they were filmed in black and white with sharp, stark imagery, while Stolen Kisses is made up of bright, colorful tones. The 400 Blows was about Antoine's search for freedom. Now that Antoine is an adult and ostensibly in control of his own destiny, there's a whole different set of forces and feelings at play.

The film is an episodic tale, sometimes whimsical, sometimes poignant, whose various plot threads paint a realistic yet romanticized picture of the human struggle for fulfillment in life. This kind of perspective was typical of the films of director Francois Truffaut, and Stolen Kisses was one of his best.

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