The Little Thief

  • 1989
  • Movie
  • R
  • Drama

THE LITTLE THIEF stars Charlotte Gainsbourg as Janine Castang, who, as the film opens, is a rebellious 15-year-old struggling against the provincial strictures of life in her small French village after WWII. Her penchant for petty thievery has aroused the wrath of her aunt and uncle, who have cared for her since her flighty mother deserted them. Removed...read more

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THE LITTLE THIEF stars Charlotte Gainsbourg as Janine Castang, who, as the film opens, is a rebellious 15-year-old struggling against the provincial strictures of life in her small French village after WWII. Her penchant for petty thievery has aroused the wrath of her aunt and uncle, who

have cared for her since her flighty mother deserted them. Removed from school and put to work, Janine finds escape in the local cinemas, where she meets Michel Davenne (Didier Bezace), a mild-mannered, married choirmaster for whom she develops a convulsive passion. THE LITTLE THIEF's main

character was originally conceived as part of Francois Truffaut's THE 400 BLOWS, but cut for reasons of length. Truffaut never forgot her, however. After his death, the task of making the film fell to Claude Miller, Truffaut's longtime production manager. The spirit of Truffaut is very much in

evidence in THE LITTLE THIEF: the affection for the past, the concern with adolescent angst, the abiding love of cinema. What's lacking is his radiantly omniscient sense of humanity, not to mention his sureness of control with both performances and film technique. The film is diverting and moves

along briskly, but is never really moving or compelling. Gangling Gainsbourg, with her hushed, sibilant voice, is the best thing in the film.

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  • Released: 1989
  • Rating: R
  • Review: THE LITTLE THIEF stars Charlotte Gainsbourg as Janine Castang, who, as the film opens, is a rebellious 15-year-old struggling against the provincial strictures of life in her small French village after WWII. Her penchant for petty thievery has aroused the… (more)

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