Release Date: July 1st, 2005 (Angelika Film Center and Lincoln Plaza Cinemas), by Wellspring.
The Cast: Romain Duris,Niels Arestrup,Emmanuelle Devos
Directed by Jacques Audiard.
In French with subtitles.
BASIC PREMISE: A son (Duris) must choose between becoming a pianist and following the footsteps of his father by becoming a gangster.
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: In this noir film, there is a lot of fine acting by its lead actor, Romain Duris. He shows a fine balance between a calm, good guy and an aggressive guy who is forced into the life of crime by his father. His father's pressure is a serious conflict and it leads to a lot of very intense, violent action scenes. Which lifestyle will he ultimately choose? That's the ultimate question that is very suspenseful to answer. Both lifestyles affect one another in a negative way, so they can't continue to co-exist. Emmanuelle Devos, who plays the main character's girlfriend, adds a level of charm and even sensuality. The cinematography is quite good along with the pacing and editing which are both help to give the film a boost of energy and style.
SPIRITUAL VALUE: The emotional conflict that the main character goes through is very moving and even heart-breaking at times. He does love his father like every son should, but he does not relate to him. The theme of following one's dreams no matter how different they are is very inspiring and makes the film quite thought-provoking. There is a very nice and smart contrast between the peaceful piano music and the loud, angry violence---which is very much like ying and yang.
INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None
NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 1
THE BOTTOM LINE: A very stylish, moving, and surprisingly thought-provoking noir film with a strong performance by Romain Duris.
RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater (1st Run)
The "B" Menu