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Remembering Maria Chapdelaine

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In 1934, French filmmaker Julien Duvivier arrived in the village of Péribonka, in Quebec’s Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region, to shoot a film adaptation of Louis Hémon’s classic novel Maria Chapdelaine.

Some 80 years later, Jean-Claude Labrecque sets out to retrace this bold, astounding enterprise. What was the impact of the original film’s production on the life of the community? What memories remain? What town secrets lie hidden in those memories? Which stories have persisted through generations? What can this adventure teach us about ourselves, our identity and our relationship with the past?

Drawing on clips from Duvivier’s film, material from archives in France and Quebec, and original footage shot by Labrecque and his team in Péribonka in 2013, the documentary Remembering Maria Chapdelaine is an inquiry into the boundaries between the fantasy world of film and reality.

 

2015, 52 min 30 s

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