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Christoph Rainer's crazy love film Pitter Patter Goes My Heart opens the New Jersey Film Festival

By Al Nigrin

originally published: 01/25/2016

Christoph Rainer
Christoph Rainer's
crazy love film Pitter Patter Goes My Heart opens the New Jersey Film Festival on Saturday, January 30, 2016.

Here is a brief interview with Pitter Patter Goes My Heart Director Christoph Rainer who lives in Austria:

Nigrin: Your short surreal film Pitter Patter Goes My Heart tells the story of Lisa who is trying to win back her ex-boyfriend, a successful commercial photographer.  Tell us what motivated you to make this film.

Rainer: When I made the film I was crazy in love – with more emphasize on crazy than on love. It was unreasonable and almost manic. So even though I don’t enjoy romantic films very much, I couldn’t help but make one myself and express my unhealthy feelings. I think I wrote my own negative, self-fulfilling prophecy in this short film. It became about how love could turn terribly sour. The funny thing is that the girl I had fallen for so badly is actually from New Jersey – Highland Park to be exact. But the good news is that after I finished the film, I confessed my love to her and the happy end was that we actually got together and now we’re both crazy in love. I am so thrilled to bring this film to her neighborhood and screen it at the New Jersey Film Festival!

As for the idea of the varicose vein casting, which is a big element in the film, the inspiring spark was when I saw a big ad for a modern varicose vein removal technology on the subway. The ad had this very beautifully lit varicose veins on it. I was wondering how that ad came about. Who designed it? Who found and photographed this leg? Were they casting different types of legs? 

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It really captivated me, because I went through the same situation with my dad. He had terrible varicose veins and that was one of the main reasons I had a hard time inviting friends over as a child, because my dad would always run around with short pants, and I’d always be very ashamed of that. I think that what you’re ashamed of and what you’re trying to suppress eventually always grows out of you, if you want it or not. Because now, I’m 30, and I’m realizing that I’m slowly developing my own varicose veins. It can be inherited, along with your blood type. I feel like this film allows me to stand up and not be ashamed of it anymore. So with the varicose veins on my mind and my heart pounding like mad, this film just erupted.

Nigrin:  Vicky Krieps who plays Lisa is really amazing. Tell us more about her and how she came to be in your film. 

Rainer: If anything is good about this film, it’s definitely the actress, Vicky Krieps, and I owe her so very much for being in this film. She is from Luxemburg and was willing to meet with me for dinner without reading a script or a synopsis. And even though she didn't know anything about the role I had planned for her, she showed up for dinner in this incredibly romantic, red sparkling dress (which she then would later also wear in the film) and I knew immediately – she was the one!

Nigrin:  How long did it take you to make this film and were there any memorable stories while you made this film or any other info about your film you can rely to our readers?

Rainer: It took one week to shoot the film and on the last day, we shot this one scene—the key scene in the movie—when Lisa, our protagonist, finally gets the chance to confront the man who left her and tell him how much he still means to her. She struggles for words at first, but slowly gathers all her courage to confess her love.

Originally I wanted to shoot the scene in multiple takes from different angles that we’d be able to edit together later. But the actress, Vicky Krieps, was simply so breathtaking, that I wanted to keep this moment in just one long shot, where the camera slowly moves closer and closer and closer to her. During shooting, Vicky’s performance was so electrifying, that most crew members actually forgot what they needed to do on set. We were just all watching the actress confessing her love and hiding her tears. I remember the dolly grip, during one of the takes was so taken by her performance, that he forgot to push the dolly forward. It was an incredible take and all I could tell her was “It was perfect...but we have to do it again, because the camera didn’t even move!”

Here is a link to the trailer for Pitter Patter Goes My Heart :


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The terrific feminist horror film In The Dark will be screened after Pitter Patter Goes My Heart. Here is more info on this screening:

Pitter Patter Goes My Heart - Christoph Rainer (Klosterneuberg, Austria)
In this surreal short film, Lisa tries to win back her ex-boyfriend, a successful commercial photographer, at a photo shoot. A modern fairytale filled with bitter romance. In German, subtitled. 2015; 20 min. With an introduction and Q+A session with Director Christoph Rainer!

In The Dark – David Spaltro (New York, New York)
In this exceptionally smart psychological horror film, a skeptical grad student and a renowned paranormal specialist investigate a haunted house and the deeply troubled woman who resides there, whose afflictions may be beyond the capacity of human understanding. 2015; 81 min.  With an introduction and Q+A session with Director David Spaltro!

Saturday, January 30, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.

Voorhees Hall #105/Rutgers University

71 Hamilton Street, New Brunswick, New Jersey

$12=General; $10=Students+Seniors; $9=Rutgers Film Co-op Friends

Information: (848) 932-8482;

Free Food courtesy of Jimmy Johns of New Brunswick will be given out prior to this screening of the New Jersey Film Festival!

Albert Gabriel Nigrin is an award-winning experimental media artist whose work has been screened on all five continents. He is also a Cinema Studies Lecturer at Rutgers University, and the Executive Director/Curator of the Rutgers Film Co-op/New Jersey Media Arts Center, Inc.



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