Sep 28, 2021
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Front Page, Industry News

A homegrown industry for Quebec to be proud of

Quebec is hoping that this awards season will be good to the film Monsieur Lazhar, the haunting story of an Algerian refugee turned Montreal teacher.

When the Genie awards are announced; it will be a surprise if the Philippe Falardeau movie isn’t nominated for best film. Fingers are crossed, too, that Monsieur Lazhar will be on the best-foreign-film list when the Academy Award nominations are announced Jan. 24.

If it is, it will be the second year in a row that a Quebec film has made it into the Oscar sweepstakes. Last year it was Incendies, which lost out in the end to Denmark’s In a Better World.

Whether Monsieur Lazhar is nominated or not, or whether it wins or not, Quebecers can take pride that, against great odds, this province has produced a film industry that has resulted in some of the country’s finest movies over the past 25 years.

Four have been in the running for an Oscar: Jesus de Montreal, Le Declin de l’empire americain and Les Invasions barbares (the winner in 2003), all directed by Denys Arcand, and Incendies, directed by Denis Villeneuve.

Like other places, Quebec has to struggle against the overwhelming dominance of American movies. While language serves as a kind of barrier protecting Quebec’s homegrown movie industry, language and local themes and references go only so far in creating an industry that can compete against the Hollywood juggernaut. But Quebec has succeeded in attracting audiences because of the quality of its films.

Enthusiasm for homemade cinema hit a peak in 2005, when Quebec movies attracted nearly one in five of the province’s moviegoers. That was the year C.R.A.Z.Y., Maurice Richard and Aurore were on the screens. Last year, even though attendance at Quebec movies slipped somewhat, should still be considered a triumph: attendance decreased, but quality didn’t. Eight of the 48 feature films produced in Quebec earned the rank “very good” from Mediafilm (mediafilm.ca), an authoritative agency that assesses French-language films.

Bon Cop, Bad Cop, made in 2006, may not have won artistic accolades, but it was a commercial success, with more than $10 million in ticket sales in Quebec. And maybe even more important, it let anglophones and francophones laugh at each others’ foibles. Any loosening in language tensions is worth the price of admission.

In a different way, Monsieur Lazhar, described as a “nearly perfect gem” by the Hollywood Reporter, has also been embraced by Quebecers. In a place that still struggles over how to integrate immigrants, this film could hardly be more relevant. And the enthusiasm for it is not just in this province; last week it won the Toronto Film Critics Association’s award for best Canadian film.

Quebecers have a film industry bursting with talent and imagination. It doesn’t matter if Monsieur Lazhar wins a Genie or an Oscar. In this province, we don’t need more proof that Quebec films are among the world’s best.

Source: Montreal Gazette

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Front Page, Industry News

A homegrown industry for Quebec to be proud of

Quebec is hoping that this awards season will be good to the film Monsieur Lazhar, the haunting story of an Algerian refugee turned Montreal teacher.

When the Genie awards are announced; it will be a surprise if the Philippe Falardeau movie isn’t nominated for best film. Fingers are crossed, too, that Monsieur Lazhar will be on the best-foreign-film list when the Academy Award nominations are announced Jan. 24.

If it is, it will be the second year in a row that a Quebec film has made it into the Oscar sweepstakes. Last year it was Incendies, which lost out in the end to Denmark’s In a Better World.

Whether Monsieur Lazhar is nominated or not, or whether it wins or not, Quebecers can take pride that, against great odds, this province has produced a film industry that has resulted in some of the country’s finest movies over the past 25 years.

Four have been in the running for an Oscar: Jesus de Montreal, Le Declin de l’empire americain and Les Invasions barbares (the winner in 2003), all directed by Denys Arcand, and Incendies, directed by Denis Villeneuve.

Like other places, Quebec has to struggle against the overwhelming dominance of American movies. While language serves as a kind of barrier protecting Quebec’s homegrown movie industry, language and local themes and references go only so far in creating an industry that can compete against the Hollywood juggernaut. But Quebec has succeeded in attracting audiences because of the quality of its films.

Enthusiasm for homemade cinema hit a peak in 2005, when Quebec movies attracted nearly one in five of the province’s moviegoers. That was the year C.R.A.Z.Y., Maurice Richard and Aurore were on the screens. Last year, even though attendance at Quebec movies slipped somewhat, should still be considered a triumph: attendance decreased, but quality didn’t. Eight of the 48 feature films produced in Quebec earned the rank “very good” from Mediafilm (mediafilm.ca), an authoritative agency that assesses French-language films.

Bon Cop, Bad Cop, made in 2006, may not have won artistic accolades, but it was a commercial success, with more than $10 million in ticket sales in Quebec. And maybe even more important, it let anglophones and francophones laugh at each others’ foibles. Any loosening in language tensions is worth the price of admission.

In a different way, Monsieur Lazhar, described as a “nearly perfect gem” by the Hollywood Reporter, has also been embraced by Quebecers. In a place that still struggles over how to integrate immigrants, this film could hardly be more relevant. And the enthusiasm for it is not just in this province; last week it won the Toronto Film Critics Association’s award for best Canadian film.

Quebecers have a film industry bursting with talent and imagination. It doesn’t matter if Monsieur Lazhar wins a Genie or an Oscar. In this province, we don’t need more proof that Quebec films are among the world’s best.

Source: Montreal Gazette

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Front Page, Industry News

A homegrown industry for Quebec to be proud of

Quebec is hoping that this awards season will be good to the film Monsieur Lazhar, the haunting story of an Algerian refugee turned Montreal teacher.

When the Genie awards are announced; it will be a surprise if the Philippe Falardeau movie isn’t nominated for best film. Fingers are crossed, too, that Monsieur Lazhar will be on the best-foreign-film list when the Academy Award nominations are announced Jan. 24.

If it is, it will be the second year in a row that a Quebec film has made it into the Oscar sweepstakes. Last year it was Incendies, which lost out in the end to Denmark’s In a Better World.

Whether Monsieur Lazhar is nominated or not, or whether it wins or not, Quebecers can take pride that, against great odds, this province has produced a film industry that has resulted in some of the country’s finest movies over the past 25 years.

Four have been in the running for an Oscar: Jesus de Montreal, Le Declin de l’empire americain and Les Invasions barbares (the winner in 2003), all directed by Denys Arcand, and Incendies, directed by Denis Villeneuve.

Like other places, Quebec has to struggle against the overwhelming dominance of American movies. While language serves as a kind of barrier protecting Quebec’s homegrown movie industry, language and local themes and references go only so far in creating an industry that can compete against the Hollywood juggernaut. But Quebec has succeeded in attracting audiences because of the quality of its films.

Enthusiasm for homemade cinema hit a peak in 2005, when Quebec movies attracted nearly one in five of the province’s moviegoers. That was the year C.R.A.Z.Y., Maurice Richard and Aurore were on the screens. Last year, even though attendance at Quebec movies slipped somewhat, should still be considered a triumph: attendance decreased, but quality didn’t. Eight of the 48 feature films produced in Quebec earned the rank “very good” from Mediafilm (mediafilm.ca), an authoritative agency that assesses French-language films.

Bon Cop, Bad Cop, made in 2006, may not have won artistic accolades, but it was a commercial success, with more than $10 million in ticket sales in Quebec. And maybe even more important, it let anglophones and francophones laugh at each others’ foibles. Any loosening in language tensions is worth the price of admission.

In a different way, Monsieur Lazhar, described as a “nearly perfect gem” by the Hollywood Reporter, has also been embraced by Quebecers. In a place that still struggles over how to integrate immigrants, this film could hardly be more relevant. And the enthusiasm for it is not just in this province; last week it won the Toronto Film Critics Association’s award for best Canadian film.

Quebecers have a film industry bursting with talent and imagination. It doesn’t matter if Monsieur Lazhar wins a Genie or an Oscar. In this province, we don’t need more proof that Quebec films are among the world’s best.

Source: Montreal Gazette

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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