Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Gentle Readers,

Here's another Truffaut movie I liked even better than The Wild Child. It's The Story of Adele H.

The children of famous people often find that others are interested in them because of their parents and not for themselves. In The Story of Adele H., Fracois Truffaut explores the true story of Adele Hugo -- the daughter of Victor Hugo -- who suffered greatly because of her inability to establish a sense of her own identity.

Adele's (Isabelle Adjani) trouble seems to encompass two areas.

First, she is angry that she is the daughter of such a famous man. She becomes upset when others learn who she is. She writes in her journal: "I was born of father unknown." She rejects her identity, which begins a loss-of-identity motif.

Second, Adele loses herself in her obsession with the man she loves, Lt. Pinson. When she contacts him, he comes to see her, only to tell her she should go home. Adele gives up her Self to him, saying, "You know that I belong to you, that you can do with me whatever you please." She also writes in her journal: "I don't give my body without my soul nor my soul without my body."

And Adele does lose her soul.

This is a sad, but beautiful and fascinating movie, and I recommend it highly. Unlike The Wild Child, The Story of Adele H. doesn't leave any loose ends. We're told at the end how Adele spends the rest of her life.

Infinities of love,


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