Heartbeats

2010

Drama / Romance

12
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 72%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 71%
IMDb Rating 7.2 10 23052

Synopsis


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Louis Garrel as L'invité à la soirée finale
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
917.01 MB
1280*682
French
NR
24 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 5 / 11
1.67 GB
1920*1024
French
NR
24 fps
1hr 41 min
P/S 2 / 17

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by hughman55 10 / 10

Oh Wow. Wasn't expecting that!

This is a great little film but you have to be a little patient. The writer/director and star, Xavier Dolan, has done a masterful job in telling a simple story in a very interesting way. The writing is restrained and a study in the economy of words. I loved it. Dolan's directing is seasoned and insightful. He stages his scenes with lots of color and creative camera angles to amazing effect whether it's the color of an umbrella on a rainy day, a dress, or common inventory on a store shelf. It is visually stunning and stylish. Between Dolan and the other two leads played by Monia Chokri and Niels Schneider, you have a powerfully subtle ensemble. I wasn't so sure about Schneider until near the end when I realized how aloof his "NIko" had to be in order for the film to work at the end. He looks like he stepped off of a Greek coin, and at first you get the impression he's just there to look pretty. Not so. Dolan and Chokri give outstanding performances as best friends, who are not exactly single, but eschew the real people in their lives for the imaginary one they dream to snag. This is not a movie to be over analyzed. Just watch it and enjoy. There's a false ending that is adorable. The real ending, about five minutes later, just made me laugh out loud. If you like good films and enjoy watching boundless creativity on display, watch this one. It might be criticized by some for being "slow". It's not. It real.

Reviewed by wickest 7 / 10

It's not love, but that's the point

I agree with another reviewer that love is not the real subject of the film. The characters think they're feeling love, and they're certainly looking for love, but in such a shallow and conniving way they're incapable of getting beyond mere sensuality at best. This is a film which starts out superficially, as superficial as its characters. Their lack of depth is underlined by the interviews of more interesting people that we would almost rather be following, but we're stuck with this trio of narcissists trying to impress each other through attitude, clothes, and money-- each locked within his competitive self and each masturbating in his or her own way. The director's own vanity fits in perfectly with his fetishist approach, the Wong Kar Wai-like sensual slow-motion to heighten gesture and make us take a long hard look at these high-strung game players.

The viewer must be patient and wait for the second part when the film, in dealing with the repercussions from the narcissism of the first part, takes on depth. It is during the last twenty minutes that the actor/director succeeds in dealing with real emotions, not the imitation ones of the first half. Now a new tension sets in that builds to its vociferous climax where the actors are required to go beyond what they have demonstrated up to this point. Watching these neurotic Montréalians (when they finally grow up, they can be the manic-depressive characters in a Denys Arcand film), the viewer goes through the gamut of his or her own memories of attraction and rejection, bouncing around like the ping-pong balls that the expressive actors represent in their own attraction/flirtation/appeasement fluctuations. In fact, the more the film is watched with introspection, the more relevant it becomes.

Reviewed by winterhaze13 8 / 10

Xavier Dolan is a promising young film-maker

21-year-old Xavier Dolan is fast becoming the star of Canadian cinema. The Quebec prodigy stormed on to the international scene with his debut J'ai tué ma mere (I killed My Mother) winning three awards at Cannes last year.

His follow-up is Les Amours Imaginaires (Heartbeats in English) and centres on a three-way love triangle. Dolan himself plays Francis, a gay Montrealer who becomes infatuated with a young socialite named Nicolas, played by Niels Schneider. Instantaneously, Francis' close friend Marie, played by Monia Chokri develops feelings of her own for Nicolas.

As the tumultuousness of love for Nicolas deepens for the two of them their close friendship begins to suffer. The two friends become embroiled in a struggle to please Nicolas who appears to represent Dolan's own ideal.

The theme of idealization is explored notably in Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo and Thomas Mann's Death in Venice which was made into a film by Luchino Visconti. There is a scene at a party where Marie envisions Michalangelo's David, the artist' own physical ideal when staring admirably at Nicolas.

Romantic obsession begins to take hold of the two friends as they vie for the affection of someone who will never return their love. Like in I killed My Mother, his follow up is about Dolan's struggling with his own homosexuality. The film is also a meditation on the senselessness of love and why its own madness is what makes it so appealing.

Dolan is undoubtedly a big talent. Monia Chokri who plays the muse of the film shines the brightest in front of the camera. Her archaic hairstyle and fashion sense would remind anyone familiar with French actress Anna Karina. And that provides a clue in who Dolan draws his cinematic inspiration from.

Three-way conflicts were a hallmark of Jean-Luc Godard and other new wave directors like Francois Truffaut. Dolan may have drawn his inspiration from Truffaut's own Jules and Jim. But Les Amours Imaginaires has many more references to Godard's early work.

Everything down to the scene settings, cultural references and camera shots are deliberately taken from Godard's early classics such as Breathless and Band of Outsiders. The characters too represent the remnants of the 1960s-style cultural rebellion that Godard's films often explored which still thrives in Montreal today.

One final stylistic note, the film also includes a roundtable of characters not related to the main story discussing relationships. Dolan manages to make it relevant to the story and continues the tradition set by Godard in Masculine Feminine. The third sequence however does run a bit too long.

Les Amours Imaginaires is already out on DVD in Canada. It will be released in theatres in the United States on February 1, 2011 so look out for it.

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