If you’re a cinephile of any experience, you’re familiar with at least some of the work of the late Francois Truffaut, the French New Wave auteur behind such acclaimed works as “The 400 Blows,” “Jules and Jim,” and “Shoot the Piano Player.” Truffaut is one of the most respected filmmakers of all time, but in Quentin Tarantino’s book, he’s a “bumbling amateur.”
The subject of conversation on the Video Archives episode in question were the thrillers of French filmmaker Claude Chabrol, sometimes called the “French Hitchcock.” Tarantino preferred Chabrol’s thrillers over Truffaut’s, but in typical Tarantino fashion, he didn’t stop there (via IndieWire).
“[Chabrol’s] thrillers are drastically better than the abysmal Truffaut-Hitchcock movies, which I think are just awful,” said Tarantino, referring to Truffaut films “The Bride Wore Black” and “Mississippi Mermaid,” both of which are suspense thrillers that pay tribute to the work of Alfred Hitchcock. Tarantino’s dismissal of “Bride” is especially interesting given his own “Kill Bill,” which borrowed the older film’s device of a widowed bride out for revenge crossing off her victims’ names from a notebook as she kills them.
“I’m not a Truffaut fan that much anyway,” Tarantino went on. “There are some exceptions, the main one being ‘The Story of Adele H.’ But for the most part, I feel about Truffaut like I feel about Ed Wood. I think he’s a very passionate, bumbling amateur.”
Comparing Truffaut to Ed Wood, the zero-budget iconoclast who made “Plan 9 from Outer Space” and “Glen or Glenda” is a piping hot take even by Tarantino standards. But, if he didn’t share opinions like this one, he wouldn’t really be Tarantino.