Ville-MarieApril 10, 2016

Canada

Director: Guy Édoin
Cast: Monica Bellucci, Pascale Bussières, Aliocha Schneider, Patrick Hivon
Runtime: 101 minutes
Language: French with English subtitles
Rating: 14A

Santa Barbara International Film Festival: Best International Film.
Canadian Screen Awards Nomination: Best Supporting Actor, Patrick Hivon

“Evenly balanced performances and thoughtful direction keep the momentum going.”—Craig Takeuchi, Georgia Straight

In his second feature, director Guy Édoin links together a handful of characters through Ville-Marie, the Montreal hospital where the majority of the film takes place. Two automobile accidents will give these characters cause to despair and then to rediscover hope—tragedy breeding melodrama and long-cloaked truth.

French screen star Sophie (Monica Bellucci) arrives in Montreal to work in a melodrama directed by her former lover. She meets up with her gay son Thomas (Aliocha Schneider), whom she has not seen in three years, due to her reluctance to tell him the name of his father. Thomas has recently witnessed a road accident that’s been feverishly tended to respectively by paramedic Pierre, (Patrick Hivon) who’s suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, and Marie, an overworked nurse (Pascale Bussières).

These four people are about to drift towards answers they’ve avoided their entire lives. It is how the characters find the means to gradually confront their issues that draws the audience into Ville-Marie.

Bellucci is perfect as the glamorous celebrity out of her element being a mom and Schneider the right mix of angry, lost, and empathetic. Hivon and Bussières exhibit the pain in their eyes that is almost, but not quite, absolved by the conclusion. This quartet might travel through the wringer, but each comes out better by the end.

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