robert bresson’s central character in ‘mouchette’ is a young girl living in rural france in desperate circumstances. while her mother is dying, she is constantly abused by her father, and seen as strange and eccentric by the rest of the village. she is teased and taunted by the boys in her neighborhood and the girls in her class at school. still she is never presented as the docile recipient of this abuse. she is no saint- trying to give back just as much as she receives. the movie follows her through one day of her life during which circumstances collude in a peculiar way leading to her eventual suicide.
absolutely spare and elegant this story was told through minimal means. the dialogue and the acting was precise and underplayed with this kind of strange emptiness throughout. somewhere there seemed to me to be this clear cynicism about all the institutions that we take as the basis for society through the eyes of the mouchette- the perpetual outsider through the violence both explicit and implicit in the film.