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16/10 Social Hygiene

Festival Selection 1h 15m 2021

Denis Côté Social Hygiene Hygiène Sociale CA 2021, 75’, fr

Antonin is something of a dandy, a hedonist and occasional petty thief who sleeps in his car. Words are his strong suit and they could have made him a world-famous writer, but now they mainly serve him when he needs to talk himself out of trouble. Five women confront Antonin, hoping to get through to him: his sister, his slightly neglected wife, the woman of his dreams, a tax inspector who looks like a colourful Angela Merkel and a woman who has been the victim of his behaviour. They meet outside in nature to persuade Antonin to change. And how does Antonin respond? By killing time with words in order to aggravate infinity.

A new film about boredom, whose six protagonists gracefully occupy Canadian meadows and woodland, lashing out at each other with their words like theatre actors from Diderot’s time. Québécois director Denis Côté, credited with “suicidal realism”, will be familiar to local audiences as the director of Ghost Town Anthology (2019) and Wilcox (2019), which both screened at RIGA IFF. He created the 45-page script stuffed full of monologues and dialogues spoken by characters standing five metres apart already five years ago in Sarajevo. During the pandemic, this open-air comedy about the death of masculinity won Côté the award of Best Director in the Encounters section at Berlinale. Meanwhile, it has become the pinnacle of avant-garde comedy for the seasoned cinemagoer. Côté would call this concept film “cerebral cinema”, which makes one chuckle.

Producers: Inspiratrice & Commandant, Denis Côté, Greenground, Annie St-Pierre, Aonan Yang, Andreas Mendritzki

Language

French

Subtitles

English, Latviešu Valoda

Country

Canada