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LFF - HEARTBEATS (Les Amours Imaginaires)  dir Xavier Dolan
HEARTBEATS is a story of longing and love lost. Francis and Marie are friends, in Montreal, who meet Nicolas, a real life Adonis with no clear sexual preference. With no time lost, they both fall in love with Nicolas. Nicolas does not show preference for either, being ambiguous throughout. Soon, tension begins to rise between Francis and Marie as they try to be closer to Nicolas and things literally come to blows, after which incident Nicolas loses interest in both Francis and Marie. Francis and Marie make attempts at declaring their love to Nicolas which he utterly rebuffs. Francis and Marie, once again, join forces and rekindle their lost friendship the only way they know how - by rebuffing Nicolas back and looking for love elsewhere.
Dolan has most definitely taken a cue from Bertolucci's "The Dreamers" and every other French New Wave boy girl boy love triangle and Wong Kar Wai's "In The Mood For Love" by adopting slow motion sequences with a theme song for the two main characters.
It is an impressive piece of work by the 21-year old Canadian considering it's his second feature. Although it could use a bit of tweaking here and there, it just works so well and specially stylistically and performance-wise. What is also great is that it a film about young love by a young person who knows what love rivalries and young naivete is. Dolan gives a great turn as Francis, but it is Monia Chokri, who plays Marie, that really steals the show; with a simple movement, gesture or slight change in her facial expression, Chokri is able to communicate a thousand words.
I believe Dolan is a director to watch out for in the future, I have most definitely become a fan!
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