American Fable is ambitious, maybe too much so sometimes, but there's an intense pleasure in the boldness of the film's style.
Francois Truffaut, the most charming and witty of French directors, has somehow got off on the wrong foot with "Such a Gorgeous Kid Like Me." This is the first Truffaut film I haven't liked--and I guess I've seen them all.
After two autobiographical movies, "Stolen Kisses" (1968) and "Bed and Board," Truffaut seemed the complete master of his whimsical, bittersweet style. And "Two English Girls" reminded us of his other dimension, his ability to present sexual passion and compulsion in a way both dead-serious and yet somehow cynical, as if he was keeping his distance from these obsessed characters.
But then came "Such a Grogeous Kid Like Me," which seems to have been half-inspired by Truffaut's well-known fascination for crime, and half-destroyed by its tendency toward predictable farce. The movie is about one Camille Bliss, who is serving a sentence for murder.
Murder, in fact, seems to follow her about; through a series of bets with fate, she has contrived the circumstances under which her father, a mother-in-law and even a rat-exterminating lover have met their ends.