De battre mon coeur s'est arrêté

The Beat That My Heart Skipped | Der Schlag, der mein Herz verspielte
In 1977, Harvey Keitel appeared in James Toback’s thriller FINGERS as the Janus-faced concert pianist and debt collector Jimmy Angelelli. The protagonist in Jacques Audiard’s latest version of the story is based on Keitel’s character. In this film, twenty-eight-year-old Tom leads a life that might be termed as criminal. In doing so he follows in his father’s footsteps, who made his money from dirty and sometimes brutal real estate deals. Tom is a pretty hard-boiled guy, witty and sexy, but also strangely considerate as far as his father is concerned. Somehow he appears to have arrived at a critical juncture in his life whereby the son takes it upon himself to become his parents’ educator.
One day, a chance encounter prompts him to take up the piano and become a concert pianist, like his mother. He senses that this might be his final opportunity to take his life in hand. He starts piano lessons; his teacher is a Chinese piano virtuoso who has recently come to live in France. She doesn’t speak a word of French and music is the only language they have in common.
Before long, Jacques’ bid to be a better person means that he begins to yearn for true love. 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…
by Jacques Audiard
with Romain Duris, Aure Atika, Emmanuelle Devos, Niels Arestrup
France 2004 107’

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