Programmed by Marc St-Pierre
This feature documentary by Jacques Godbout retraces the life of Hubert Aquin, one of Quebec’s most brilliant writers. The film revolves around 2 episodes in Aquin’s life: the dramatic events leading up to the publication of his first novel, and the anguish of the months preceding his suicide (Aquin ended his life in 1977.) An unusual montage technique intercuts excerpts from a feature film in which he was the lead actor with the recollections of people who knew him well.
A word from Tënk
Hubert Aquin is, without a doubt, the most enigmatic and elusive figure in the Quebec literary world. Renowned author of Next Episode (Prochain episode in the original French), he was also a director, producer and screenwriter at the NFB, an intellectual, a militant separatist (notably undertaking some clandestine political action for a few months in 1964) and a race car fanatic (he was one of the founders of the Canadian Grand Prix). Aquin’s life was built on grand accomplishments, but also mysteries, false pretenses and circumventions. Through interviews with those who knew, loved, respected and occasionally even tended to him, filmmaker Jacques Godbout worked to capture Aquin’s personality and to understand what brought him to take his own life on March 15, 1977.
Curator of Collection, National Film Board of Canada