The estranged daughter of a famous, recently deceased Quebecois filmmaker undertakes a mission to mount a retrospective of her father’s work, in this slyly funny family drama from director Terry Miles.
Contemporary World Cinema
Grace (Lauren Lee Smith) had not spoken to her recently deceased father, the fabled Québécois filmmaker John Laurentian, in years. So even she's surprised when, on a trip to pick up some of his belongings, she offers to help put together a retrospective of his work. Not only has she not seen any of it (their rift was spectacularly traumatic), she knows nothing about curating. She's also a shut-in who rarely ventures outside the condo she shares with her husband, Ben (Ben Cotton). Grace struggles along fitfully, dozing off while watching her father's movies (all of them involving love triangles), and discussing her inertia with her confidante, Clem (Jennifer Beals).
By happenstance, she meets Adam (Kett Turton), a neighbour who's an expert on all things Laurentian and offers to help her out. As Grace digs deeper into her father's life and work — and after a disturbing encounter with his long-time lover and lead actress Sophie (Gabrielle Rose) — she finds herself taking on his persona.
A slyly funny family drama about what
we inherit (and don't inherit) from our
parents, Terry Miles' Cinemanovels is the
director's most mature and sustained work
to date, a sexy slow burn with a sumptuously
oversaturated look, courtesy of Miles
himself, and some beautifully mounted
and often very comical excerpts from her
father's films. Miles is supported by a fine
cast, also including Catherine Michaud
as the young Sophie, but his principal collaborator
is Smith. As Grace, she's such
a profound mystery to herself that her
confusion is transfixing and strangely
exhilarating. We're more than happy to
stumble along with her as she tries to navigate