Cover image for Tirez sur le pianiste
Tirez sur le pianiste
Truffaut, François.
[DVD version].
Publication Information:
[Place of publication not identified] : Fox Lorber Home Video, 1999.
Physical Description:
1 videodisc (84 min.) : sound, black and white ; 4 3/4 in.
A timid cafe pianist has given up his career as a concert pianist, a career which had destroyed his marriage. Events force his involvement with gangsters who once again cause him to be responsible for the destruction of his life.
General Note:
Widescreen presentation.

Title on cassette and container: Shoot the piano player

From the novel "Down there" by David Goodis.

Fully restored; new translation and subtitles.

For specific features see interactive menu.

Originally released as a motion picture in 1960.
Reading Level:
Not rated.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DVD 3610 Adult DVD Media Room-Foreign Language Video
DVD 3610 Adult DVD Foreign Language

On Order



Homage to the American gangster film, in which a former concert pianist heads down a precarious path of murder, intrigue and passion.


An homage to the American gangster film, 'Shoot the Piano Player' is about a former concert pianist who heads down a precarious path of murder, intrigue, and passion.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Brunette's edition makes this volume one of the most valuable in its series. What Truffaut called his "respectful pastiche" is redefined as a postmodernist mix of unharmonizable and contradictory fragments of past and present. But because Truffaut reaffirms his own personality, the film is a "rich paradox ... a modernist, even romantic, assertion of a post-modernist sensibility." Brunette's Truffaut is 25 years ahead of its time--which seems about right, give or take a few months. The 1960 film was Truffaut's second feature and quite different from its flanking 400 Blows and Jules and Jim. Shoot the Pianist remains arguably Truffaut's most spiritedly enigmatic film, but Brunette's placement in the post- modernist aesthetic illuminates the film and incidentally provides a crisp, clear introduction to the spirit of the movement. This script supplants the 1987 L'Avant-Sc`ene publication because Brunette used the Criterion company's letterbox laserdisc version, whereas the previous publication seem to have been based on a flat 16 mm. print. As well, Brunette augments the first version's dialogue. The "Commentary" section is excellent, even if it does draw mainly on the familiar Truffaut books. There is a new 1980 interview with Truffaut that is especially informative. The volumes of this series depend upon fresh critical introductions, complex and important films, and solid critical apparatus. On all counts this edition scores high. All academic levels. M. Yacowar; Emily Carr College of Art and Design