January 24, 2015

Mommy (2014)

Mommy (2014) - Movie Review
Directed by: Xavier Dolan
Country: Canada

Movie Review: “Mommy” proves that there’s a young Canadian filmmaker out there named Xavier Dolan who has a lot to give to contemporary cinema. His past dramas evinced a strong sexuality component associated to homosexuality, but “Mommy” can be seen as a slight change of direction, maintaining however the high dramatic levels of its predecessors. The story follows Diane Després (Anne Dorval), a widower who gets his hyperactive 16 year-old son, Steve (Antoine-Olivier Pilon), back from a juvenile center for troubled youths, after he has set the cafeteria on fire causing a lot of material and human damages. Steve is plagued with frequent raging attacks that not even his mother, the person he cherishes most, is completely immune. The relationship between them is closer to brother and sister than mother and son, and Diane doesn’t seem to have the ability or strength to deal with her son’s unpredictable behavior. When the situation seemed out of control, some hope rises in the horizon when Kyla (Suzanne Clément), a teacher in a forced sabbatical leave, answers affirmatively to Diane’s call for help, giving the desirable assistance that she needed to handle Steve. Not without some manipulation, “Mommy” still presents an enormous emotional weight, for which contributed the superb performances by the trio of actors. How artful from Dolan setting up a sequence of mesmerizing, unfocused images to mirror Diane’s dream of hope for the future, to suddenly discontinue it with a painful reality that would lead us to a devastating finale. Elaborated at a vehement pace, “Mommy is also visually bold, making use of empathic close-ups and expressive detailed scenes, beautifully shot, in its majority, in a non-standard square ratio of 1:1.

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