From there, I thought of Boby Lapointe’s cameo in Truffaut’s Shoot the Piano Player.
Boby Lapointe – Framboise – Shoot the Piano Player
The format of this clip sucks, but this is actually better than the letterbox clip on YT because the sound is fuller and it gives a bit more story context.
In fact, this clip begins and ends in the same places where I began and ended the song on a tape I made years ago of my favorite songs from Truffaut films. So that got me thinking about my other favorite Truffaut film songs. I know the next two exist on YouTube, but I’m really hoping that my super favorite exists on YouTube too. It didn’t used to. So we’ll see.
Jeanne Moreau – Le Tourbillon – Jules et Jim
This is the first Truffaut film I knowingly watched. I remember requesting it from the library because I started getting super into Truffaut after viewing what turned out to be his Farenheit 451.
It was love ever after for me with Truffaut, especially once I saw this warm scene of musical accord.
Alain Souchon- L’Amour en Fuite – L’Amour en Fuite
The last in the Antoine Doinel series, L’Amour en Fuite is a bittersweet finale that seals my fondness for the character that Jean-Pierre Léaud played on and off from childhood in 1959 to adulthood in 1979. This catchy pop tune theme always makes me happy with its “dooo DO do do do do do.”
(All these songs, by the way, are good for singing along with if your French is shit and you need to practice.)
Maurice Jaubert – ? – L’Histoire d’Adele H
This song is so hard to find. And I don’t know what it’s called. But I’m thrilled that I managed to dig it up. It should autoplay below at 3:20. It runs to about 6:16.
The soul-piercing composition is coupled with what has to be one of the best edited sequences in all of cinema.
Listen to the gentle creep of the intro as the camera inches toward poor Adele, daughter of Victor Hugo, crazed with obsession, praying before an altar she has devoted to a man who doesn’t love her. Watch as the emotion of the song builds and the camera penetrates her enormous eyes. Savor the masterful editing as the camera and the clarinet (?) zoom in on the proud captain in tandem. It’s all interrupted for a minute by Adele’s desperate ramblings, and then the crescendo rises with the rage of the sea.
And! Starting around 5:23, do you hear that bass that’s like a slowed Under Pressure?
[Totally Unrelated] The Night of the Hunter
To conclude, this clip has nothing to do with Truffaut.
But like Truffaut’s films, The Night of the Hunter convinces me that a mark of a great film is the inclusion of a great song. Listen to Pearl’s tune about the pretty fly.
And talk about one of the best sequences in all of cinema. With The Night of the Hunter, Charles Laughton created the greatest Huck Finn film that was never made.
In fact, although Hunter has nothing to do with Truffaut, Truffaut did review it in his film criticism days. He wrote: “It makes us fall in love again with an experimental cinema that truly experiments, and a cinema of discovery that, in fact, discovers.”
Which is what Truffaut himself went on to do as a director, and a chooser of music.