Joletta Hale

Written by Joletta Hale

Modified & Updated: 05 Mar 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


The Story of Adele H. is a film that captures the heart and soul of French cinema. Directed by the renowned filmmaker François Truffaut, this movie tells the captivating story of Adele Hugo, the youngest daughter of the famous French writer Victor Hugo. Released in 1975, The Story of Adele H. is a historical drama that delves into the obsessive love and the tragic descent into madness of Adele. With its compelling narrative, stunning cinematography, and outstanding performances, this film has cemented its status as a classic in the world of cinema. In this article, we will explore 40 fascinating facts about The Story of Adele H., from its production history to its impact on French cinema and beyond.

Key Takeaways:

  • Dive into the 19th century world of obsession and unrequited love with The Story of Adele H. for a hauntingly beautiful and emotionally intense cinematic experience.
  • Experience the power of storytelling and the consequences of unreciprocated affection through Isabelle Adjani’s phenomenal performance and François Truffaut’s masterful direction.
Table of Contents

The Story of Adele H. is a historical drama

Released in 1975, this film is based on the true story of Adele Hugo, the second daughter of renowned writer Victor Hugo.

Isabelle Adjani gives a phenomenal performance

Isabelle Adjani, in the titular role, delivers an outstanding performance that earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress.

The film is directed by François Truffaut

François Truffaut, known for his contributions to the French New Wave movement, directs this emotionally powerful film.

The movie explores themes of obsession and unrequited love

The Story of Adele H. delves deep into Adele’s unhealthy obsession with a British officer who does not reciprocate her feelings.

The film is set in the 19th century

Set in the mid-1800s, the movie beautifully captures the period’s aesthetics, costumes, and atmosphere.

Adele’s emotional turmoil is central to the story

We witness Adele’s gradual descent into madness as her love for the officer consumes her every thought.

The film showcases the struggles of a strong-willed woman

Adele’s determination to win the officer’s love highlights the challenges faced by women in a patriarchal society.

The film’s cinematography is visually stunning

The sweeping shots and meticulous attention to detail create a visually immersive experience for the audience.

The movie was critically acclaimed

The Story of Adele H. received widespread acclaim for its compelling narrative and compelling performances.

The soundtrack perfectly complements the film

The hauntingly beautiful score enhances the emotional impact of Adele’s journey.

The film explores the dark side of love

It delves into the complexities of love, showcasing the destructive power it can hold over an individual.

The costume design reflects the time period

From elaborate gowns to tailored jackets, the costumes accurately depict the fashion of the 19th century.

The movie is based on Adele Hugo’s diaries

Truffaut drew inspiration from Adele Hugo’s personal diaries to craft this poignant story.

The film highlights the consequences of obsession

Adele’s blind devotion to the officer ultimately leads to her downfall.

The Story of Adele H. is a masterclass in character development

Truffaut expertly takes the audience on Adele’s journey, gradually revealing the depths of her obsession.

The film showcases the power of storytelling

Through Adele’s diaries, we witness the transformative power of writing and self-expression.

The movie was shot on location in various European cities

Truffaut captures the authentic essence of 19th-century Europe through his choice of filming locations.

The film was praised for its screenplay

The well-crafted script effectively brings Adele’s story to life with its nuanced dialogue.

The emotional intensity of the film is palpable

The raw emotions portrayed by the actors leave a lasting impact on the viewer.

The Story of Adele H. is a character study

Truffaut delves deep into the psyche of Adele, exploring the complexities of her character.

The film received multiple award nominations

It was recognized for its exceptional performances, direction, and screenplay by various prestigious award ceremonies.

The film’s pacing adds to the suspense

Truffaut effectively builds tension throughout the movie, keeping the audience engaged until the very end.

The cinematography captures Adele’s isolation

The film visually represents Adele’s emotional isolation through wide shots and empty spaces.

The Story of Adele H. is a thought-provoking film

It raises questions about the destructive power of unrequited love and the price one is willing to pay for it.

The film transcends language barriers

The universal themes and powerful performances make the movie accessible to audiences worldwide.

The movie has stood the test of time

Even after decades, The Story of Adele H. continues to be regarded as a classic in cinematic history.

The film’s tight editing enhances its narrative

The seamless transitions and well-paced editing contribute to the overall impact of the story.

The film explores the effects of unrequited love on mental health

Adele’s obsession takes a toll on her mental well-being, portraying the devastating consequences of unreciprocated affection.

The movie received critical acclaim for its authenticity

Truffaut’s meticulous attention to detail and historical accuracy contribute to the film’s authenticity.

The film’s ending is bittersweet

Without giving too much away, the conclusion leaves the audience with a sense of both sadness and reflection.

The movie addresses the societal restrictions imposed on women

Through Adele’s story, the film sheds light on the limitations faced by women during that time period.

The Story of Adele H. is a testament to Truffaut’s storytelling prowess

Truffaut once again proves his ability to craft a compelling narrative that leaves a lasting impact on the viewer.

The film evokes a sense of nostalgia

The attention to historical detail and the authentic portrayal of the era make the movie a journey back in time.

The movie’s haunting atmosphere lingers with the viewer

The haunting soundtrack combined with the atmospheric visuals creates an unforgettable cinematic experience.

The film highlights the sacrifices one is willing to make for love

Adele’s unwavering commitment exemplifies the depths one can go to for the sake of love.

The movie delves into the complexities of identity

Adele’s obsession with the officer challenges her sense of self, blurring the lines between reality and fantasy.

The film’s costume and production design received recognition

The meticulous attention to detail in recreating the 19th-century setting earned praise from critics and audiences alike.

The movie leaves a lasting impression

The Story of Adele H. resonates with viewers long after the credits roll, offering a profound exploration of love and its consequences.

The film is a testament to the power of storytelling

Truffaut’s masterful direction and compelling screenplay showcase the transformative nature of cinematic storytelling.

The Story of Adele H. is a must-watch for film enthusiasts

This captivating movie offers an immersive journey into the depths of obsession, love, and sacrifice.


In conclusion, “The Story of Adele H.” is an intriguing and emotionally charged film that explores the depths of obsession and unrequited love. With its powerful performances, stunning cinematography, and captivating storyline, this movie has captivated audiences since its release in 1975. The film depicts the tragic tale of Adele Hugo, daughter of the renowned author Victor Hugo, and her relentless pursuit of a man who does not reciprocate her feelings.”The Story of Adele H.” serves as a testament to the complexity of human relationships and the lengths some individuals will go to in the name of love. With its historical context and rich character development, this movie is a must-watch for cinema enthusiasts and fans of period dramas alike. Whether you’re drawn to its compelling narrative or its exploration of the human psyche, “The Story of Adele H.” is a masterpiece that continues to resonate with audiences to this day.


Q: Who directed “The Story of Adele H.”?

A: The film was directed by François Truffaut, a renowned French filmmaker.

Q: Is “The Story of Adele H.” a true story?

A: Yes, the film is based on the real-life events of Adele Hugo, the daughter of Victor Hugo.

Q: When was “The Story of Adele H.” released?

A: The movie was released in 1975.

Q: What is the runtime of “The Story of Adele H.”?

A: The film has a runtime of approximately 1 hour and 36 minutes.

Q: What language is the movie in?

A: “The Story of Adele H.” is primarily in French, with English subtitles for non-French-speaking viewers.

Q: Are there any notable performances in the film?

A: Yes, Isabelle Adjani delivers a remarkable and award-winning performance as Adele Hugo.

Q: What genre does “The Story of Adele H.” fall under?

A: The film can be categorized as a historical drama and a romantic film.

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