A dysfunctional young man is pulled between loyalties to his Italian mob-connected loan shark father and his mentally disturbed Jewish concert pianist mother.




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Cast overview, first billed only:
Georgette Mosbacher ...
Anita (as Georgette Muir)
Carole Francis ...
Lenny Montana ...
Vasco Valladeres ...
Luchino's Son
Riccamonza (as Anthony Sirico)
Tom Signorelli ...
Italian Prisoner
Arthur Fox


Keitel plays the lead in this schizophrenic movie in which he is continually pulled by the two conflicting sides of his personality, on the one hand that of a quiet piano virtuoso and on the other a ruthless debt collector for his mobster father. Keitel is introspective as only Keitel can be, really making the audience feel for him and his pained existence. Written by <gilesw@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


He Has The Hands Of An Artist And The Mind Of A Madman. See more »


Crime | Drama | Music


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

23 August 1978 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Det beskidte job  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


"De battre mon coeur s'est arrêté" a.k.a. "The Beat That My Heart Skipped" is a 2005 French remake of the 1978 U.S.A. James Toback film, "Fingers," and may even be the first French remake of an American movie created from an original screenplay. See more »


Doctor Fry: The golden rule of urology - if you get an erection, you come, if you don't get an erection, you walk.
See more »


References Five Easy Pieces (1970) See more »


Now Is Forever
Music by George Barrie
Lyrics by Sammy Cahn
Italian lyrics by Pat Noto
Sung by Jerry Vale
Released by Buddah Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

An educated look at the underside of life.
8 April 1999 | by (Lucas Buck, NC) – See all my reviews

Many times over the years James Toback has been referred to as ‘brilliant', and a good deal of those times the film ‘Fingers' is mentioned in the same sentence.

It stands right there with Resevoir Dogs, Bad Lieutenant, and Mean Streets-all Harvey Keitel films which have over the years gotten far more applause than they did earlier..

Actually the premise is just enough unique: the concert pianist from the wrong side of the tracks, the carefree and confused collector for his bookie father.

Toback's dialogue is very raw, but it is on target for the very raw world he describes.

Michael Gazzo gives one of his best performances ever as Keitel's father.

Not to be missed, but if you look to Toback to recreate this magic with his later efforts, ‘The Pick-Up Artist' or `Exposed', don't waste your time. Even his recent `Two Girls and a Guy' might have been `Two Mil Down the Drain' without the superb performance of Robert Downey Jr.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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the beat that my heart skipped victor322-1
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