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Un Coeur en Hiver (1992)

Un coeur en hiver (original title)
Beautiful violin virtuoso Camille has two obsessions: the music of Ravel, and a friend of her husband's who crafts violins. But his heart seems to be as cold as her playing is passionate.

Director:

Claude Sautet

Writers:

Claude Sautet (scenario and dialogue), Jacques Fieschi (scenario and dialogue) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 16 wins & 11 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Daniel Auteuil ... Stéphane
Emmanuelle Béart ... Camille
André Dussollier ... Maxime
Elizabeth Bourgine ... Hélène
Brigitte Catillon Brigitte Catillon ... Régine
Myriam Boyer Myriam Boyer ... Mme. Amet
Jean-Claude Bouillaud Jean-Claude Bouillaud
Stanislas Carré de Malberg ... Brice
Dominique De Williencourt Dominique De Williencourt ... Christophe
Jeffrey Grice Jeffrey Grice
Luben Yordanoff Luben Yordanoff
Nanou Garcia Nanou Garcia
François Domange François Domange
Van Doude
Jacques Villa Jacques Villa
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Storyline

Beautiful violin virtuoso Camille has two obsessions: the music of Ravel, and a friend of her husband's who crafts violins. But his heart seems to be as cold as her playing is passionate. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

France

Language:

French

Release Date:

4 June 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Un Coeur en Hiver See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$1,666,511
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Emmanuelle Béart learned to play the violin for the part. See more »

Connections

References To Be or Not to Be (1942) See more »

Soundtracks

Musique extraite des Sonates et Trio
de Maurice Ravel
Durand S.A. Editions Musicales et A.R.I.M.A. Ltd
Direction musicale Philippe Sarde
Enregistrée aux Studios Guillaume Tell par Jean-Jacques Kantorow, Howard Shelley,
Keith Harvey
See more »

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User Reviews

A very sad film but beautifully realized
2 June 2002 | by howard.schumannSee all my reviews

Brother, can you spare a heart?

In Un Coeur en Hiver, the late Claude Sautet looks into the heart of Stephane, a master violin craftsman (Daniel Auteuil), and finds only ice. Stephane is an observer of life, not a participant. The film reveals the consequences of his emotional isolation, of what he has to give up in order to maintain his solitude.

Un Coeur en Hiver is as far from a typical Hollywood romance as Casablanca is from L'Avventura. The film is almost a revisionist portrayal of the usual debonair French romantic lover. While the lovely sonatas and trios of Maurice Ravel form a haunting background, there is a lifeless quality to Stephane and ennui is a palpable presence throughout.

Stephane seems ready to leap into a passionate relationship with a beautiful young violinist, Camille (Emmanuelle Beart) after Maxim, his partner for many years (also in love with Camille), introduces her to Stephane. Stephane, however, is unable to relate to Maxim's friendship or to his growing attraction to Camille and becomes distant and manipulative.

Held back by his reluctance to take risks, his relationship with Camille provides him with the forms of intimacy but without the substance. No pat psychological interpretation is provided but is left to the viewer to interpret. The camera is reserved and intimate. For the most part, emotions are conveyed through glances, expressions, and silences rather than dialogue.

The scene where Camille finally explodes out of frustration over Stephane's emotional distance, however, is powerful, yet is not enough to shake the reluctant lover from his hiding place. At a restaurant, Camille tells Stephanie, "He says he likes music because "music is dreams". "Poor jerk", she blurts out, "You know nothing about dreams". Pointing to his heart, she says, "There is nothing in there, nothing. No imagination, no heart, no balls". Stephane simply sits there with a half grin on his face. I could really feel Camille's frustration in trying to pluck fruit from a barren tree.

Auteuil's outstanding performance makes him a likable figure, a really sweet guy but a very sad one. I felt repeatedly like shaking him from his lethargy and exposing him to joy and the rhythmic beauty of life, perhaps adding a little Mozart to his Ravel.

At the end, however, there is some character development. Stephane finally recognizes that "there is something lifeless inside of me." As his friends depart, he is left sitting alone at a restaurant table, poignantly feeling his loneliness. Perhaps this insight is the beginning of his transformation. A very sad film but beautifully realized.


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