French director Louis Malle took on transferring Queneau’s “Zazie dans le métro” to the big screen one year after its initial publishing.
10-year-old Zazie is visiting her uncle, Gabriel, in Paris. Her initial excitement about discovering the capital’s subway will fade sharply, as soon as she’s informed of the ongoing strike. She then decides to explore the city and visit some of its most famous places: Saint-Vincent-de-Paul church, the Eiffel tower and a cabaret, where her uncle works at night…
The director maintains the main plot but differentiates himself from the writer: instead of criticizing literary tradition, Malle is parodying cinema. Although the film wasn’t positively received neither by critics or by the public, I personally agree with the positive reviews by Truffaut (director), Ionesco (writer of the theatre of the absurd) and Chaplin (comedian). The writer himself was excited with it and commented that in this film he sees “an original work whose writer is Louis Malle“.