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Perhaps the most accessible of Robert Bresson's films, this story of a 14-year-old schoolgirl at the mercy of the world around her is like a melodrama stripped of flourish. Mouchette is an angry adolescent in the French provinces, the daughter of a drunken bootlegger and a dying, bedridden mother, a pariah in school and a figure of village gossip. She rebels in typically adolescent ways, lobbing mud at teasing classmates and defying wagging tongues with a willful stare, but her deep pain and loneliness pour from her hollow, sad eyes. There's no sentimentality in Bresson's portrait of village life, but for a few brief moments the film explodes with energy and emotion. Mouchette rides the bumper cars at a local fair, flirting with a young boy in loving bumps and deliberate rams, and her dour expression flowers in a smile as the fairground speakers blare a rock & roll tune... until her father's heavy hand slaps her back to reality. It's a moment unlike any other in a Bresson film, a joyous reprieve from the monotony of her life, but if the rest of her existence is glum and hopeless, the film is unexpectedly beautiful. The style is often fragmented--the film opens on a stunning play of hands, feet, and spying eyes as poacher and police both wait for their prey--but the beauty of the forests and meadows creates an idyllic naturalism that leavens Bresson's harsh portrait of the human condition. --Sean Axmaker --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
i've only watched it twice but so many moments are burned into my memory forever. it's something ineffable in the tilt of every shot, the slow, predestined precision of every... Read morePublished on June 24 2001 by Nathan J. Cunningham
I would tend to agree with the general sentiment expressed by the previous reviewers. The overall unrelenting misery of Mouchette's existence is somehow uplifting. Read morePublished on Jan. 28 2001
Mouchette is without any doubt one of the best films ever made or to be made. In almost sacral serenity it shows us the last three days of the life of a twelve year old very poor... Read morePublished on March 10 1999