By the time he was 21 Canadian born actor, writer and director Xavier Dolan had directed two films. The first was I Killed My Mother (2009) a biographical drama about the mother and son bond, which garnered three awards at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival. His next film was Heartbeats (2010) another remarkable achievement for such a young director and one in which he wrote and starred in. This movie premiered at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival as well as Toronto and at the London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival’s and has been described as a story about perverse love.
Frances (Dolan) and Maria (Monia Chokri) live in Montreal, seem to be financially independent and are very good friends. This relationship is severely tested when they both fall under the magnetic spell of Nicolas (Neils Schneider) a golden haired Adonis with come-to-bed eyes. Francis daydreams that he is ‘James Dean’ while Maria, stylish and tough but fragile below surface, aspires to emulate ‘Audrey Hepburn’. Both are very beautiful people, bright and intelligent and both attempt to bed the dream like character of Nicolas but struggle to do more than fantasise, talk about it and smoke seductively - although all three sleep in the same bed at times!
This extremely beautiful relationship drama is fall of inner feeling wonderfully portrayed by our three leads. The film boasts a great soundtrack and some imaginative slow-motion camera work and a great sense of humour. Dolan has a certain style that’s can be referenced through directors like Pedro Almodovar and Wong Kar-Wai, a style that certainly charmed this blogger. Can’t wait to sample more work by a very promising filmmaker.