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The Air I Breathe is the 2008 directorial film debut of Korean-American filmmaker Jieho Lee, who co-wrote the script with Bob DeRosa. It stars Kevin Bacon, Julie Delpy, Brendan Fraser, Andy Garcia, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Emile Hirsch, and Forest Whitaker. The film was financed by NALA Investments through its production company NALA Films, and was released on January 25, 2008 in the United States.
The concept of the film is based on an ancient Chinese proverb that breaks life down into four emotional cornerstones – Happiness (Whitaker), Pleasure (Fraser), Sorrow (Gellar), and Love (Bacon). The proverb speaks of these emotions, not as isolated fragments of feelings, but as elements that make up the whole of the human existence. Each of the four protagonists is based on one of the four emotions; and like the proverb their paths are inextricably linked to each other, akin to the Fingers (Garcia) of a hand.
None of the four main characters' actual names are mentioned in the whole film, although Gellar's character's stage name, "Trista", is mentioned several times.
Each of the elements of life is portrayed using different characters, with the character Fingers (Garcia) playing the...