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Year: 2005
USA: Wellspring
UK: Artificial Eye
Cast: Romain Duris, Niels Arestrup, Linh-Dan Pham, Aure Atika, Emmanuelle Devos, Jonathan ZaccaÏ, Gilles Cohen, Anton Yakovlev, Melanie Laurent
Director: Jacques Audiard
Country: France
Language: French (English subtitles)
USA & UK: 107 mins
UK Certificate: 15 contains strong language and some bloody violence
USA Release Date: 1 July 2005 (Limited Release)
UK Release Date: 4 November 2005 (Limited Release)
US Distributor
UK Distributor


In this follow-up to his critical smash READ MY LIPS, Jacques Audiard has adapted and updated James Toback's cult 1978 noir FINGERS to come up with this memorable character study about a young man torn between a life of crime and classical music. THE BEAT THAT MY HEART SKIPPED premiered at Berlin 2005, where it played to enthusiastic audiences and won the Silver Bear for Best Score.

Tom (Romain Duris - L'AUBERGE ESPAGNOL) is 28 and destined to follow in his father's footsteps in the sleazy and sometimes brutal world of the real estate business. But a chance encounter leads him to believe that he can become, like his mother, a concert pianist. In earnest, he starts preparing for the audition with a virtuoso Chinese pianist. She doesn't speak a word of French, music is their only exchange. But pressures from the ugly world of his day job soon become more than he can handle...

But when he finally has the chance of winning his best friend's wife - a woman he has desired for years - his passion only succeeds in scaring her. And then, one day, his dubious past comes to light.....

Like READ MY LIPS, Audiard has fused two unlikely worlds into a stunning vision featuring a menacing and dangerous Paris rarely seen on screen.

Director: Jacques Audiard

"I am so fond of FINGERS because of the obvious and the underlying themes, things like: "Fatherhood", "Motherhood", "What it means to be a son" and "How can you change your life?", "The price of doing what it is you have to do", "The business of becoming an adult, how a man becomes a man....". The original (film) is set amongst New York's Italian mafia. That wasn't going to work for us. We sat down to think of something new and I came up with real estate pretty fast (we'd already used it, after a fashion, in READ MY LIPS). Specifically we wanted to plunge into a world of petty real-estate investors, whose behaviour isn't mindful of legal niceties, not really moral..."

"In my movies, the characters have to be heroes. The question is how are they going to become heroes? And what will become of them when they stop being heroes? I provide answers to those questions by - in formal terms- keeping the outside world at bay, by keeping it off screen. My hero has to push his way through the world like some invading force on the march. From the beginning I realized that THE BEAT THAT MY HEART SKIPPED would have to draw its strength from the actor or actors. I cast Romain Duris because one always casts someone for the simple reason that one wants to film them.....I could not point my camera at anyone. Romain stimulates one's appetite......"

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