Incendies

Incendies

Canadian twins Jeanne and Simon are left two envelopes in their mother's will for a brother and father they never knew they had. Journeying from Canada to Lebanon they discover the truth behind their mother's past which is inextricably linked with the country's bloody history. 4.0 out of 5 based on 14 reviews
Incendies

Omniscore:

Certificate 15
Genre Foreign, Drama
Director Denis Villeneuve
Cast Mélissa Désormeaux-poulin, Maxim Gaudette, Rémy Girard, Abdelghafour Elaaziz Lubna Azabal
Studio Trinity Distribution
Release Date June 2011
Running Time 130 mins
 

Canadian twins Jeanne and Simon are left two envelopes in their mother's will for a brother and father they never knew they had. Journeying from Canada to Lebanon they discover the truth behind their mother's past which is inextricably linked with the country's bloody history.

Reviews

The New York Times

A. O. Scott

Mr. Villeneuve tells Nawal’s story in a way that is both subtle and emphatic, and Ms. Azabal, portraying Nawal from hopeful youth to despairing middle age, gives a performance that is all the more powerful for the restrained, unshakeable sense of dignity she brings to it … The perspective of Jeanne and Simon, modern Canadians wholly unaware of their roots in that history, makes the film into something more elusive and complex, a meditation on memory and identity that recalls some of the recent films of Atom Egoyan.

21/04/2011

Read Full Review


Sight & Sound

Roger Clarke

[There is] a sense of almost trashy, coincidence-based melodrama at work here that’s not usually seen in sombre, sectarian-issue dramas of this kind. The extraordinary thing is that it works.

01/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Daily Telegraph

David Gritten

…astonishingly intense but impressively poised … Incendies is no one’s idea of a joyful ride, but it’s a remarkable work, and its complex story etches itself on the memory.

23/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Observer

Jason Solomons

... muscular, emotional film-making of the highest order, self-confident in its delivery yet always respectful of its characters' plight ... Even as it deals with the tangled knots left by conflict, Villeneuve never seems deceptive with his storytelling. "War has a merciless logic," a former warlord tells Melissa, and this story powers to a climax some might find contrived but which left me reeling, as if whacked over the head with a hardback copy of a Dickens novel.

26/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Scotsman

Siobhan Synnot

Emotionally tough, compelling and visceral.

21/06/2011

Read Full Review


Empire Magazine

David Parkinson

Adroitly cutting between flashback and detection, Villeneuve generates thriller-like suspense … he also explores graver themes like the scars of conflict and the cruelty of fate. The performances are as imposing as André Turpin’s imagery. But the key to the film’s credibility is Villeneuve’s restraint … A thriller that twists and turns with an understated power that will have you gripping the arm of your seat. Terrific stuff.

01/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Evening Standard

Derek Malcolm

It isn't easy to open out a well-respected stage play without losing a lot of its bite and subtlety. But Denis Villeneuve's intelligent adaptation of Wajdi Mouawad's story does it justice.

24/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Independent

Anthony Quinn

Azabal carries the historic burden of sorrow in a performance of reverberant intensity, but the twin siblings are also powerfully characterised. Once you're out of the film and unpicking the network of fate and coincidence, it may seem rather incredible; but while it's happening you can't tear your eyes from it.

24/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Times

Wendy Ide

The twist at the end catches you off guard and leaves you gasping — it’s a punch to the stomach, the kind of melodramatic plot device more usually found in a particularly strident soap opera. But thanks to the gravity and intelligence of the storytelling, the audience focuses not on the somewhat lurid nature of the twist but on the quiet horror of its implications.

24/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Sunday Times

Cosmo Landesman

The film’s central message, “blood begets more blood”, is not new, but Denis Villeneuve’s film is a powerful mystery about love, family and forgiveness.

26/06/2011

Read Full Review


Total Film

Tom Dawson

Expertly shifting between present and past , writer-director Denis Villeneuve displays an impressive command of his material, patiently building up to an emotionally explosive climax.

13/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Independent on Sunday

Nicholas Barber

You can understand why Incendies was nominated for a Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. It's a furrow-browed epic concerning the repercussions of war – and it happens to boast some fabulous cinematography, too. If you're going to watch a busload of women and children being machine-gunned by religious fanatics then I suppose the mountain scenery might as well look as crisp and sunny as it does here. But I wonder how many of the Oscar voters who supported it would choose to watch the film a second time.

26/06/2011

Read Full Review


The Guardian

Peter Bradshaw

It's an intriguing movie, in some ways, but its contrived and even bizarre final revelation depends on coincidences of almost Hardyesque proportions. It is not really believable, and yet if it is not taken literally, but as a cinematic prose-poem, it has undoubted force.

23/06/2011

Read Full Review


Time Out

David Jenkins

Pain, suffering, humiliation, bloodshed, martyrdom, misogyny, corruption, political instability, family secrets and death: … not what you’d call a laugh riot … let’s call it’s a strong film based on a weak story.

22/06/2011

Read Full Review


©2013 The Omnivore