It’s a show about nothing ! (” A series that will talk about anything ! “). It is from this sentence mythical that has been created one of the best (the best ?) sitcom of all time, the american series from NBC : Seinfeld (1989-1998). While addressing a totally different style, TU DORS NICOLE offers a feeling similar. A story simple enough, a film that observes the life of young Nicole in the summer, his boredom and his passage to adulthood. If Seinfeld has been able to talk about anything on 180 episodes of 20 minutes, this canadian film does the same and brilliantly about 1 hour 30. With a image sublime and richness of each plan, the director Stéphane Lafleur has made TU DORS NICOLE is a film funny and surreal, unfortunately overshadowed in his presentation at the 67th edition of the Cannes film Festival (selected for the directors ‘ Fortnight) by the craze, critical, that we do not share, around Mommy from Xavier Dolan (the other canadian representative).
Taking advantage of the family’s home in the absence of her parents, Nicole spent peacefully in the summer of its 22 years in the company of her best friend Véronique. While their vacation is coming without surprise, the elder brother of Nicole arrives with his band to record an album. Their imposing presence comes quickly undermine the relationship between the two friends. The summer then takes another twist, marked by the heatwave, insomnia growing of Nicole and the insistent advances of a boy of 10 years. Tu dors Nicole observes with humor the beginning of adulthood and a lot of potential.
TU DORS NICOLE tells the story of a moment of life of a youth who is about to enter into adulthood, and his inability to move forward. On one side there is Nicole who wants to go to Iceland to do nothing from it but never to embark on his journey. On the other there is his brother (Marc-André Grondin hardly recognizable shaved head), to rehearse with his band. But without a real project, he prefers to push his musicians to end up to make them leave the group. However, rather than develop his subject by the scenario, the developer remains in the observer of life. There is nothing going on in the life of Nicole, from her small job in a store, and the trouble the rest of the day. Only the reverse of Sofia Coppola with Somewhere (2010) we descended into lassitude, Lafleur keeps us in his universe of more enjoyable using a mix of moods to say the least, incongruous. Funny and surreal, as with the young Martin, 10 years old boy with the voice of the man (Godefroy Reding, doubled by Alexis Lefebvre), for a surprising and hilarious, the film is also deeply natural and graceful, through the character of Nicole. Performed by Julianne Side, charming and fun, the girl exudes a real freshness with her smile mischievous and her phlegm linked to the misunderstanding of what surrounds it. It forms, with Catherine St-Laurent (for Veronique) a great duo, always sublimated by the camera.
”Absence of color, combined with the non-movement of the camera Lafleur, TU DORS NICOLE looks like a photograph album, a marvel for the eyes.”
Stéphane Lafleur shows a real talent for placing his camera. No movement, with the exception of two-three panoramic and tracking shots, the director always chooses the best framework imaginable. As a band-drawn, each plan is a box in which everything is already present. The characters move on a regular basis in a manner horizontal up to get out of it, as if the protagonists were filming them or even pages. The off-field takes on its full meaning, leaving an important place to the imagination of the viewer. With this optical switching Lafleur gives his film a magical way. On the one hand with the richness of the plans, obtained thanks to the choice of decors and a large depth of field, as much on wide shots that plans tightened, but also by the photography. The film, which was shot in color then transferred to black and white, finds its beauty in the play of light. A quality of image that we owe to the director of photography Sara Mishara. This american 38-year-old had already illuminated the two previous works of Lafleur, Continental, un film sans fusil (2007) and En terrains connus (2011), but also the beautiful Felix and Meira by Maxime Giroux was released in France, the irony of the calendar, a month earlier, reached a level of excellence that is remarkable. The technician dips each plan in a dampness on the heat of the summer while creating a contrast by the absence of colors. Combined with the non-movement of the camera Stéphane Lafleur, TU DORS NICOLE looks like a photograph album, a marvel for the eyes.
Before such image quality, it would almost forget about Nicole. Although the heroine of the film, the director likes to place it regularly into a corner of the frame. A way to intrigue, disturb, and leave us in a state of doubt. Is that what we see is real ? Nicole being prone to insomnia, it seems to live in a kind of fog, and in a distortion of the real. That can fall asleep on a couch at work or in the car of a stranger turning around in the neighborhood to sleep, his toddler. The girl is the reason for this dreamlike atmosphere and surrealistic, combining humor and emotion. She was surrounded throughout the film by the sound extradiégétique (external to the narrative, not heard by the protagonists) of harp way is a fairy tale, and the music intradiégétique (integrated in the narration heard by the protagonists), rock and grunge of his brother. With this staging is so special that makes you forget a scenario léger, Stéphane Lafleur proves that sometimes the image and the general atmosphere are enough to make beautiful cinema.
The other outputs of the march 18, 2015
• Realisation : Stéphane Lafleur
• Screenplay : Stéphane Lafleur, Valérie Beaugrand-Champagne
• Main actors : Julianne Côté, Catherine St-Laurent Marc-André Grondin
• Country of origin : Canada
• Released : march 18, 2015
• Duration : 1h33
• Distributor : Les Acacias
• Synopsis : taking Advantage of the family’s home in the absence of his parents, Nicole quietly in the summer of its 22 years in the company of her best friend Véronique. While their vacation is coming without surprise, the elder brother of Nicole arrives with his band to record an album. Their invasive presence comes quickly undermine the relationship between the two friends. The summer then takes another twist, marked by the heatwave, insomnia growing of Nicole. Tu dors Nicole observes with humor the beginning of adulthood and a lot of potential.