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À bout de souffle
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Breathless (1960) More at IMDbPro »À bout de souffle (original title)

Photos (See all 69 | slideshow) Videos (see all 2)
Breathless -- With its lack of polish, surplus of attitude, crackling personalities of rising stars Jean-Paul Belmondo and Jean Seberg, and anything-goes crime narrative, Jean-Luc Godard's debut fashioned a simultaneous homage to and critique of the American film genres that influenced and rocked him as a film writer for Cahiers du cinéma.
Breathless -- Three Reasons Criterion Collection trailer


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Release Date:
7 February 1961 (USA) See more »
The film that was banned for 4 years. Why..? (original Finnish poster tagline)
A small-time thief steals a car and impulsively murders a motorcycle policeman. Wanted by the authorities, he reunites with a hip American journalism student and attempts to persuade her to run away with him to Italy. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Nominated for BAFTA Film Award. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
To become immortal, and then die See more (173 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Jean Seberg ... Patricia Franchini

Jean-Paul Belmondo ... Michel Poiccard / Laszlo Kovacs
Daniel Boulanger ... Police Inspector Vital
Henri-Jacques Huet ... Antonio Berrutti
Roger Hanin ... Carl Zubart
Van Doude ... Himself
Claude Mansard ... Claudius Mansard
Liliane Dreyfus ... Liliane / Minouche (as Liliane David)
Michel Fabre ... Police Inspector #2
Jean-Pierre Melville ... Parvulesco the Writer

Jean-Luc Godard ... The Snitch
Richard Balducci ... Tolmatchoff
André S. Labarthe ... Journalist at Orly
François Moreuil ... Journalist at Orly
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Liliane Robin ... Minouche
Gérard Brach ... Photographer (uncredited)
Philippe de Broca ... A Journalist (uncredited)
José Bénazéraf ... Man in a White Car (uncredited)
Jean Domarchi ... A Drunk (uncredited)
Jean Douchet ... A Journalist (uncredited)
Raymond Huntley ... A Journalist (uncredited)
Louiguy ... (uncredited)
Michel Mourlet ... (uncredited)
Guido Orlando ... (uncredited)
Madame Paul ... (uncredited)
Raymond Ravanbaz ... (uncredited)
Jean-Louis Richard ... A Journalist (uncredited)
Jacques Serguine ... (uncredited)
Jacques Siclier ... (uncredited)
Virginie Ullmann ... (uncredited)
Emile Villion ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Jean-Luc Godard 
Writing credits
François Truffaut (story)

Jean-Luc Godard  screenplay (uncredited)

Produced by
Georges de Beauregard .... producer
Original Music by
Martial Solal 
Cinematography by
Raoul Coutard 
Film Editing by
Cécile Decugis 
Makeup Department
Phuong Maittret .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Pierre Rissient .... assistant director
Art Department
Clément Hurel .... poster artist
Sound Department
Jacques Maumont .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Claude Beausoleil .... camera operator
Raymond Cauchetier .... still photographer (uncredited)
Editorial Department
Lila Herman .... assistant editor
Other crew
Claude Chabrol .... technical advisor
Suzon Faye .... script supervisor (uncredited)
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"À bout de souffle" - France (original title)
See more »
90 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

This film is dedicated to Monogram Pictures.See more »
Revealing mistakes: During street shots, countless passersby keep on staring into the camera, revealing the shots to be made without appropriate filming barriers and not using extras for pedestrians.See more »
[first lines]
Michel Poiccard:After all, I'm an asshole. After all, yes, I've got to. I've got to!
See more »
Movie Connections:
References The Harder They Fall (1956)See more »


What is the significance of Michel rubbing his lips with his thumb?
What is the movie playing in the theater when Michel and Patricia are trying to escape from the detectives?
What does Michel say at the end of the movie?
See more »
64 out of 79 people found the following review useful.
To become immortal, and then die, 21 January 2006
Author: jdoan-4 from United States

So says the novelist in response to Patricia's question, "What do you hope to attain out of life?" That response is the philosophy of the film and of every character in the film. All want to be in control of their destiny. All want to be something that they are not. None are able to do any of these things. They are all contradictions. How can you die as an immortal? How can Patricia be free and independent is so many other things determine what she can do? How can this film transcend the screen while existing on the screen? This is an amazing film to watch. Goddard fills every scene with ingenuity and energy. He puts his actors in a beautiful environment and lets them do their thing. And they do it extremely well. The actors are beautiful. Not just cosmetically, but spiritually and psychologically. I am not sure that I liked either of the two main characters. I am sure I could not keep my eyes off them. I could not take my eyes off the screen. Techniques that novices today use for no substantial purpose are utilized by Goddard to amazing effect. The greatest filmmakers are the great editors. Goddard makes the editing a character itself. It is the nervous narrator hurrying the film along. It breathlessly awaits the next scene, and leads us to do the same. I like the way Goddard spends prodigious time simply watching his characters. The conversation scene at the center of the film is amazingly long and drawn out, yet I did not find it boring. I found it fascinating. People are fascinating. Everyone is trying to be something. It takes tremendous talent to indulge in the minutiae of existence. A great film.

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Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Breathless (1960)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Which director now reminds you of the early Godard? filmfancritic
I get why you hate this film FromUpHere
Good Movie bnwfilmbuff
*Yawn* dawnbaxter34
Is there a character in movie history that smokes more than Michel? BigDanTeague
This film is so sexist liveandletdie-189-174252
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