Originally published 1975. 358 pages including index, contents and short list of Truffaut's films.
I refuse to write this review after i've finished the entire book, because i refuse to admit that one day there could be no more of it to read. This is a film buff's dream book. Truffaut was a great filmmaker - his 400 Blows is one of the most beautifully told simple stories of adolescence ever. A sensitive, personal film. His film criticism, if possible, is better than his films. Truffaut had such a love for cinema, and this passion comes across in his writing more so than in his films.
This book is great to just dip into. It is a collection of essays, published and unpublished, expressing his opinion in a playful, fun, yet always intelligent way, of various individual films and entire careers. Included are pieces on the body of work of Chaplin, Welles, Jean Vigo, Jean Renoir, Humphrey Bogart, James Dean, John Ford, Fritz Lang, Frank Capra, Bunuel, Bergman, Fellini, Rossellini, plus many short subjects on individual films by many French new wave filmmakers (Resnais's Night and Fog and Muriel, Vadim's And God Created Woman, Godard's My Life to Live and All Boys... Patrick, as well as some Bresson, Guitry, Tati, Melville, Dassin, Becker, Clouzot and a few others) and American directors of talkies mainly from the 40's and 50's (including Billy Wilder, Elia Kazan, Kubrick's Paths of Glory, Laughton's Night of the Hunter, Lumet's 12 Angry Men, Barefoot Contessa, Bounjour Tristesse and more).
Truffaut died in 1984, and this book was published in 1975 in english, but it doesn't talk about any movie after 1960 (i think), so bear that in mind - this is a chronicle of that period of cinema, which i wasn't that interested in when i bought the book, but it very quickly cultivated an interest in me. So even if you don't know much about movies before 1960, you'll find this book fascinating, and perhaps even inspiring.