Louis Malle’s riotous, wildly experimental ZAZIE DANS LE METRO (1960) is based on the novel of the same name by Raymond Queneau, a co-founder of Oulipo, the experimental writer’s group based on linguistic constraint. Zazie Dans le Metro has been called the funniest book ever written in, and about, the French language. It was enormously popular in France, but given the liberties it takes with language – inventing words, defying syntax and spelling – it was considered a risk for Malle to adapt, and its subsequent release was met with far less success than his two previous narrative films, ELEVATOR TO THE GALLOWS and THE LOVERS, both released in 1958.
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