Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Incendies

Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Melissa Desormeaux-Poulin, Maxim Gaudette, Remy Girard

Adult twins Jeanne (Melissa Desormeaux-Poulin) and Simon (Maxim Gaudette) arrive at the office of Jean Lebel (Remy Girard), a notary for the reading of their mother’s will, Nawal Marwan (Lubna Azabal). Her instructions are simple: to deliver two sealed letters, one to their father they thought was dead, and the other to a brother they did not know they had. Nawal also wants to be buried naked, no prayers, and face down (away from the world). Jeanne takes up the final tasks but brother Simon decides not to accompany her to the Middle East. The intriguing history of young Nawal is told in flashbacks as Jeanne discovers the family secrets played out against the Christian Muslim conflict. The film is based on a play by Lebanon-born writer Wajdi Mouawad and conveys the dehumanization of civil war, the horror of genocide, and the scourge of unbridled violence that rapes the lives of innocents. Great performances all round.

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