Saturday, September 18, 2004

La Peau Blanche

One of the stranger meditations on racial relations that I've seen. A country-boy Quebec university student named Thierry and his roommate, Henri (Montreal born, but Hatian backgrackground) take a night on the town in Montreal. This leads to an amourous encounter with two prostitutes which turns violent for Henri. After leaving the hospital, Henri tells his family that they were assulted by skinheads. Theirry is uncomfortable with this, but supports his friends desire for discretion.
Theirry finds red-heads creepy normally (It's thier pale skin. --Note that the translation of title is "The White Skin"). He meets a red-head student which he becomes irrationally atracted to despite his aversion. These disjointed incidents begin to get connected.
What follows is a departure from drama and headlong into genre. The film is slow to build and never satisfyingly pays off, but I'm willing to cut some slack for this first-time filmmaker from Montreal. There is an offkilter beat to the way the film plays out that just worked for me.
I'm sure this will be played to death on The Canadian Movie Channels, it is well worth a look.
UPDATE: This film wom the best Canadian First feature award this years TIFF.


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