Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Heartbeats (2010) - ★★★★

Director: Xavier Dolan
Writers: Xavier Dolan
Stars: Monia Chokri, Xavier Dolan, Niel Schneider, Anne Dorval

I was captivated by Heartbeats. It embodies heart-ache, jealousy, frustration, anger and lust in a most beautiful and glamorous fashion. The performances are all spectacular, mainly because the actors can portray these heavy emotions realistically. One thing that is absolutely stunning is the cinematography. Director Xavier Dolan was only 21 years old when he made this film, and my god has he put it together well. It's a story that many can relate to, but it's modern and youthful. Long story short, I loved this movie.

Marie (Monia Chokri), and Francis (Xavier Dolan), are beautiful, fashionable, intelligent best-friends. They're both pretty bitchy and not all that likable in all honesty. The drama starts when they meet a handsome and open-minded young man named Nicolas (Niel Schneider). They both fall in love with Nic, who they hang out with often and even share a bed with on occasion. It's a simple story really, but the performances and honest feelings these characters share is what elevates Heartbeats to greatness.

Monia Chokri absolutely blew me away. Holy cow does this woman have a piercing stare! Her character was a person that couldn't hide her emotions very well. She played a good bitch, but also a fragile and hurt human-being. Xavier Dolan proved that he's a brilliant actor/director in this film. All I can really say about their performances is that they truly were believable. Even though they both have stunning appearances, Chokri and Dolan managed to convey that their characters are as weak and vulnerable as the next person.

I absolutely adored the cinematography. There are a number of notable scenes. I'd have to say that my favorite occurs after Francis gets rejected. We see him descend downstairs, where the bottom is nothing but darkness (descending into a dark depression). However, I truly adored the scene where Francis fantasizes about Nicolas standing naked with marshmallows falling from the sky. It was quick but said everything about how he feels about the man. Dolan uses slow-motion in such an effective way, making every single scene stand out and memorable in my mind.

The music was freaking awesome! One of my favorite songs of all time, 'Bang Bang' by Cher or Nancy Sinatra (take your pick) was sung in French. It was used very effectively, being sung sensually by the amazing Dalida during the slow-motion scenes. Oh, and one more thing... the ending to this movie was bloody brilliant. All I can say is, here we go again.

My interest never wavered throughout Heartbeats, not for one minute. It was always entertaining, always beautiful, and always honest. The performances were fantastic, yet the cinematography was the star of the movie. I think Xavier Dolan has so much potential to become a master of cinema.

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