She was the icon of the French Nouvelle Vague (France’s mid-20th-century film movement), François Truffaut‘s muse and one of the most talented actresses of her generation.
Jeanne Moreau first came to American audiences’ attention in Louis Malle’s 1958 drama “The Lovers”. But the film that consecrated her as movie icon was, without a doubt, “Jules and Jim“, directed by Truffaut and considered an emblem of French cinema.
Her hauntingly expressive face, the sensual, grave voice and the intensity of her acting made her unique, although she had never been the typical femme fatale, like the friend Brigitte Bardot.
Among Ms. Moreau most memorable films, we’d like to remember “The Night” (1961) with Marcello Mastroianni, “Diary of a Chambermaid” (1964) by Luis Buñuel, “Eva” (1962) and “The Bride Wore Black” (1968), in which she played the role of a vengeful newly wed-newly widowed.
She was also known for her sharpness and intelligence. She once said:
“Life is a mountain: you go up, reach the top and then go down. To me, life is going up until you are burned by flames.”