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Breathless (1960)

À bout de souffle (original title)
Not Rated | | Crime, Drama | 7 February 1961 (USA)
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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.

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(original scenario)
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4,585 ( 269)
Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 4 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
... Patricia Franchini
... Michel Poiccard / Laszlo Kovacs
Daniel Boulanger ... Police Inspector Vital
Henri-Jacques Huet ... Antonio Berrutti
... Carl Zubart
... Himself
Claude Mansard ... Claudius Mansard
Liliane Dreyfus ... Liliane / Minouche (as Liliane David)
Michel Fabre ... Police Inspector #2
... Parvulesco the Writer
... The Snitch
Richard Balducci ... Tolmatchoff
André S. Labarthe ... Journalist at Orly
François Moreuil ... Journalist at Orly
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jacques Lourcelles ... (as Raymond Ravanbaz)
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Storyline

Michel Poiccard, an irresponsible sociopath and small-time thief, steals a car and impulsively murders the motorcycle policeman who pursues him. Now wanted by the authorities, he renews his relationship with Patricia Franchini, a hip American girl studying journalism at the Sorbonne, whom he had met in Nice a few weeks earlier. Before leaving Paris, he plans to collect a debt from an underworld acquaintance and expects her to accompany him on his planned getaway to Italy. Even with his face in the local papers and media, Poiccard seems oblivious to the dragnet that is slowly closing around him as he recklessly pursues his love of American movies and libidinous interest in the beautiful American. Written by duke1029

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The French Film The French Talk About - The Most See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

7 February 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Breathless  »

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Box Office

Budget:

FRF 400,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$3,222, 23 April 2000, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$336,705, 31 October 2010
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jean-Luc Godard had met Jean Seberg through her then-husband, director François Moreuil, and thought she would be someone who could give the film more commercial appeal, having made high-profile appearances in some Hollywood productions, but still be willing to work on a low-budget feature since her American career did not live up to the initial expectations. See more »

Goofs

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 »

Quotes

[first lines]
Michel Poiccard: After all, I'm an asshole. After all, yes, I've got to. I've got to!
See more »

Connections

Featured in Reel Radicals: The Sixties Revolution in Film (2002) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Revolutionary. Brilliant. Oh so pretty
23 October 2001 | by See all my reviews

This Movie, a triumph of the French Nouvelle Vague, marks a turning point, not only for the Director, Jean-Luc Godard, but for anyone who sees it. The plot, though intriguing, is secondary to the incredible presentation. Use of hand-held cameras and jump-cuts (where the director cuts from one angle to a shot of the same angle two seconds later, a stylistic effect that can show freneticism or boredom) were revolutionary at the time, yet can still surprise and delight today.

Jean Seaberg is excellent, with the nicest accent you'll ever hear, as are the supporting cast, all rounded stereotypes. But the leading man outshines all the others. A virtuoso display from Jean-Paul Belmondo as Michel Poiccard makes the viewer swoon and scorn in equal measures. He doesn't make it easy for us to empathize with him, yet we still do, and in doing, we feel we have earned something.

Revolutionary. Brilliant. Oh so pretty.


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