Film / Heartless

Jamie Morgan is an aspiring photographer who has very prominent birthmarks on his face (which is shaped like a heart) and arm. He tries living a normal life, but is continually stared at and teased by various people. He receives a summons to a dilapidated flat block and given a chance by the sinister Papa B to be rid of his marks for a price. Jamie takes it and feels much more confident and happy in his life, getting a chance at a relationship with aspiring model Tia. However, he must hold up his end of the deal with Papa B and is forced to cut out a man's heart and place it on a church's steps or suffer the consequences.

A very well done indie film and star turn by Jim Sturgess. While having a simple story, it's very well written and acting and can be genuinely frightening at several points.

Not to be confused with The Heartless.

This film contains examples of:

  • Apologetic Attacker: Jamie when he cuts out the heart of the prostitute.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: Jamie's end of the bargain is for him to cut out a man's heart and leave it on the steps of a church on the night of a full moon.
  • Bury Your Gays: For his sacrifice, Jamie finds a gay prostitute on the streets to kill.
  • Deal with the Devil: Done between Jamie to get rid of his birthmarks.
  • Disappeared Dad: Jamie's dad is mentioned to at least vanished or dead.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The film's major songs were written by director Phillip Ridley and his friends in order to save money.
  • Fate Worse Than Death: "Unhappily ever after, mate!", considering what Papa B does to Jamie..
  • Freakiness Shame: It's revealed that Tia still slept with Jamie despite him still having his birthmarks.
  • Gainax Ending: And how. After The Reveal that Jamie never lost his birthmarks, he also ends up pacing together that the "demons" he saw were just a violent gang obsessed with Molotov cocktails and Belle was just a girl he saw in a news report. Plus the fact he reunites with his father in the end makes it more weirder if Papa B really is a demon or was it just in his damaged mind.
  • Jerkass: Perfection.
    • Pretty much everyone that isn't Jamie, Tia, Belle, and Jamie's parents
  • Kubrick Stare: Jamie has a rather unnerving one.
  • Lizard Folk: The demons, at least until the reveal.
  • Louis Cypher: Papa B, especially in the end.
  • Man on Fire: Happens three times during the film, even with the ending.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Were there really demons? Did Jamie really see demons? Was it all in his mind? The film is pretty vague about this.
  • Morality Pet: Jamie's father and girlfriend, which helps with helping Jamie pass on.
  • Shower of Angst: Jamie takes one after he completes his end of the bargain.
  • Start of Darkness: subverted, as it never happened. Maybe.
  • Through the Eyes of Madness: At the film's end, it's revealed that Jamie imagined all the supernatural elements of the film, meaning that he never lost his birthmarks.