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Film / Bed and Board

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Bed and Board (Domicile conjugal—"marital home") is a 1970 film directed by François Truffaut.

It is the fourth of five films in the The Adventures of Antoine Doinel film series. Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud) is now married to Christine, the woman he wooed in the previous installment, Stolen Kisses. They are living in a small apartment in Paris, Antoine selling flowers from a downstairs stand, Christine taking in violin students. Antoine lucks into a cushy job, and Christine gets pregnant. They have a baby boy.

However, this domestic bliss is disrupted when Antoine becomes infatuated with a Japanese woman named Kyoko, and starts an affair. Will their marriage survive?

The Antoine Doinel series concluded in 1979 with Love on the Run.


  • Ambiguous Ending: The Distant Finale shows Antoine and Christine one year later, engaging in domestic squabbles—he throws her hat and coat down the stairwell because she is being slow leaving. Their neighbors see this, the wife says "Now they're really in love," and the husband gives her a skeptical look as the film ends. Sure enough, in Love on the Run Antoine and Christine are divorced.
  • Call-Back: Kyoko writes Antoine little rolled-up notes with messages like "Kyoko loves Antoine." At the end of the film he is neglecting her repeatedly at dinner, taking multiple trips to the telephone booth to call Christine. After the last one, he comes back to the table to find Kyoko gone, and a little rolled-up note on which she wrote "Drop dead."
  • Celebrity Paradox: Antoine and Christine catch their neighbor on TV doing an impression of Delphine Seyrig from Last Year at Marienbad. Seyrig starred in the previous Antoine Doinel film, Stolen Kisses.
  • Continuity Nod: When Antoine expresses a desire for Christine to keep her glasses on, she teases him about how his previous girlfriend, "the girl at the youth concerts", wore glasses. That's a reference to the second film in the series, Antoine and Colette, where Antoine met Colette at a youth concert series.
  • Distant Finale: Ends with a short scene captioned "One Year Later" that shows Antone and Christine in minor domestic squabbling.
  • Dramatic Thunder: Used for a deliberately cheesy effect, when a clap of thunder plays over the soundtrack when Kyoko mentions that she and Antoine could commit suicide together.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: Christine leaves Antoine and stops at an office building, and won't say why—but the middle of the three offices advertised outside is a gynecologist. Antoine then goes to catch the train—and there's an advertisement for baby diapers. He immediately realizes that Christine is pregnant.
  • Foreign Fanservice: Antoine becomes infatuated with a good-looking Japanese woman, mostly because she is Japanese.
  • Gratuitous English: Truffaut had a habit of squeezing some English dialogue into most of his films. In this one Antoine gets a job with an American shipping company by faking an English fluency that he doesn't really possess.
  • Jump Cut: There's a jump cut for no obvious reason as Antoine gets into a phone booth to call a friend and tell him about the baby.
  • Leg Focus: The opening scene has the camera focused on Christine's smooth calves as Christine, in a knee-length skirt, goes about her routine.
  • Mighty Whitey and Mellow Yellow: Antoine engages in a passionate affair with a Japanese woman named Kyoko. It is explicit in the film that he is attracted to her because she's an exotic foreigner. Notably, despite living in Paris, Kyoko dresses in a traditional Japanese kimono all the time rather than wearing Western clothes.
    Antoine: She's another world!
  • Mood Motif: There's a vaguely creepy, intense-looking, very quiet guy that the other residents of the apartment building call "The Strangler". Whenever he appears, discordant guitar notes twang on the soundtrack. This goes away after the man is revealed to be a stand-up comic.
  • The Noun and the Noun: Bed and Board
  • Running Gag:
    • Ginette, the waitress in the cafe next door, continually making overt sexual propositions to Antoine as he enters and leaves the building.
    • The man who keeps borrowing money from Antoine, then meeting him and saying "Don't I owe you X francs?", before borrowing an even larger amount of money. The last time, Antoine simply blows him off.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Kyoko. Justified since this is only because we see her through Antoine's eyes, and Antoine wants to see her as an exotic ideal. He gets tired of her once he realizes she's an actual person.
  • Sexy Secretary: The secretary at Antoine's new job is an attractive young lady who wears tight sweaters. One office worker leers at her and says "You look good enough to eat."
  • Shout-Out:
    • A comedian does an impression of Delphine Seyrig from Last Year at Marienbad.
    • There is a large poster in the square advertising John Ford's film Cheyenne Autumn.
    • A random moment has Antoine waiting for a train and seeing a man who is clearly Jacques Tati's Monsieur Hulot—hat, pipe, umbrella, tan raincoat, awkward manner as he tries to decide which train car to enter.
  • The Shut-In: A random moment has Antoine commenting that upstairs neighbor M. Debois hasn't left his apartment in 25 years, and won't until Marshal Petain is buried at Verdun.
  • Single Tear: Christine confronts Antoine about his infidelity by dressing up Japanese-style. A single tear rolls down her cheek as she stares at him.
  • Slice of Life: Basically a portrait of Antoine's married life—getting a new job, dinner with the in-laws, having a baby, having an affair.
  • Time Passes Montage: Played for Laughs as a "Thursday, Friday, Saturday" montage shows Antoine becoming increasingly uncomfortable with sitting down on the floor to eat, Japanese-style, at Kyoko's apartment. The gag is that he's wearing the exact same clothes and it's obviously just one scene.
  • Time Stop: Used for an effect that shows Antoine's flowers blooming, thus causing the hidden love notes from Kyoko to spill out, thus causing Christine to find out about his affair.
  • Video Credits: Ends with little video clips showing pretty much everyone with a speaking part in the film, along with their names.
  • Wanting Is Better Than Having: After the initial passion of his affair with Kyoko tapers off, Antoine grows bored with her, getting uncomfortable with sitting on the floor to eat and realizing that they have nothing in common.