Time Out (2001 film)

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Time Out
L'Emploi du temps.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Laurent Cantet
Produced by Barbara Letellier
Written by Robin Campillo
Laurent Cantet
Starring Aurélien Recoing
Karin Viard
Music by Jocelyn Pook
Cinematography Pierre Milon
Edited by Robin Campillo
Stephanie Leger
Distributed by A-Film Distribution
Haut et Court
Release dates
4 September 2001 (2001-09-04) (Italy)
14 November 2001 (2001-11-14) (France)
Running time
134 minutes
Country France
Language French
Box office USD 448,542[1]

Time Out (French: L'Emploi du temps) is a 2001 French drama film directed by Laurent Cantet and starring Aurélien Recoing and Karin Viard.[2] The film is loosely based on the life story of Jean-Claude Romand (though without the criminal element), and it focuses on one of Cantet's favorite subject matters: a man's relationship with his job.

L'Emploi du Temps received considerable attention internationally and was shown at the Venice Film Festival and Montreal's New Cinema Festival. It was one of the independent films to be featured at the 2005 Traverse City Film Festival.


The film tells the story of Vincent, a middle-aged man who is fired after having spent more than 11 years working for a prestigious consulting firm. Unable to admit to his family that he has been fired, the unemployed executive continues to pretend he is going to the office every day. In reality, Vincent spends his time aimlessly driving the highways of France and Switzerland, reading papers, or sleeping in his car.

As time progresses, Vincent invents more and more elaborate lies, throwing himself into a vicious spiral of deceit. To sustain his bourgeois lifestyle, Vincent sets up a Ponzi scheme (an investment scam) and is eventually enlisted into smuggling by career thief Jean-Michel. Murielle, Vincent's wife, after discovering her husband's "life of lies" attempts to bring him back into the realm of reality.


L'Emploi du temps was placed at 99 on Slant Magazine's best films of the 2000s,[3] number 9 of The Guardian's Best Films of the Noughties,[4] and number 11 at The AV Club's top 50 films of the '00s.[5]


  1. ^ "Time Out (2002)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 2007-06-23. 
  2. ^ The New York Times
  3. ^ "Best of the Aughts: Film". Slant Magazine. Retrieved February 10, 2010. 
  4. ^ "100 Best Films of the Noughties". The Guardian (London). December 17, 2009. Retrieved December 20, 2010. 
  5. ^ "The best films of the '00s". The AV Club. Retrieved October 8, 2011. 

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