The Festival du cinéma international en Abitibi-Témiscamingue is underway, and so is our programming. Today, we’re proud to present two of our feature films: Normale by Olivier Babinet and Ourse bleue by Claude Hamel.
Normale is a Franco-Belgian comedy-drama directed by Olivier Babinet and distributed by K-Films Amérique. The film takes us into a world that is both touching and comic. It is an adaptation of the play “Le Monstre du couloir,” by David Greig. It’s a blend of realism and fantasy, tackling themes such as adolescence, first love, illness, and the work of young caregivers. The feature film will have its North American premiere on Sunday afternoon, October 29, in the presence of director Olivier Babinet.
Lucie (Justine Lacroix) is 15 years old and has a vivid imagination. She lives alone with her father William (Benoît Poelvoorde), who, underneath his awkward adolescent exterior, is battling multiple sclerosis. Between school, a small job, and the daily grind, Lucie manages as best she can, and escapes into the writing of a whimsical autobiographical novel, which veers between dream and reality… The announcement of a visit from a social worker upsets this delicate balance. Lucie and her father must redouble their inventiveness to create the illusion of a normal life.
Ourse bleue is a tribute documentary about Métis artist Virginia Pésémapeo Bordeleau, directed, produced, and distributed by Claude Hamel and starring Joséphine Bacon, Andrée Levesque-Sioui, Louis-Karl Picard-Sioui, and Christine Sioui Wawanoloath. Virginia Pésémapeo Bordeleau, originally from Lebel-sur-Quévillon, Abitibi, received the prestigious Prix à la création artistique from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec in 2006. The documentary will have its world premiere on Sunday afternoon, September 29.
Astounded and amazed by Virginia Pésémapeo Bordeleau’s talents as an author, painter, sculptor, and storyteller, Claude Hamel decided to produce a documentary illustrating the poetry of this Quebec artist, who is Métis and Cree on her mother’s side. “Ourse bleue” (blue bear), half virgin, half sensual, symbolizes both cultures that Virginia embraces and explores. Through the written word, expressing the beauty of the world and its violence, and through the dazzling beauty of her canvases, transcending pain, and suffering, or bursting with joy. Wandering through the duality that inhabits us all, Virginia, the little girl from the bridge, navigates us back and forth from one shore to the other. We walk beside her, our heads shimmering with light, our heavy hearts lightening with each step towards acceptance of what is, of what has shaped us. Virginia is
Quebec, the very essence of this reconciliation, with ourselves, with this “métissage” which is in itself synonymous with the land. It’s a film about beauty. It’s about the beauty of an artistic life. Claude Hamel sums it up in his own words: “The infinite beauty of Abitibi, her homeland, my homeland. A documentary that levitates you from the palm of my hand and begins with the celebration and importance of sisterhood and solidarity. Ourse bleue is about a mature woman highlighting the extraordinary talent of a mature woman, powered by a love of art and the sensual pleasure of letting you discover her in all her immense simplicity.”
Passports, opening night, and brunch tickets go on sale September 15! Stay tuned to our website and social networks.
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