Pierre et Yolande Perrault Award 2010 - RVQC
With Antoine, filmmaker Laura Bari treats us to a sensitive portrait of a six-year-old boy, one like any other, except that he’s blind. We follow Antoine in his classes, playing with friends, skating, and visiting family. We accompany him on imaginary excursions as a detective, listen to him as a radio host, and sit shotgun as he drives his parents’ car. Antoine allows us access back into childhood since this isn’t a film about the struggles of a blind child but rather one about the real and imaginary world of childhood.
A word from Tënk
In a society bombarded with images, how does a blind child construct their imagination? This is the question filmmaker Laura Bari seeks to answer by delving into the singular universe of Antoine, a five-year old child who has been blind since birth.
Thanks to brilliant staging, Bari succeeds in slipping between the real world and her young protagonist’s inventions: from the very start, her camera stays at the level of Antoine’s head. We then find ourselves in a spy movie where he transforms into Detective Dec. Accompanied by his friends Maëlle and Julietta, he’s on the trail of the mysterious Madame Rousky, who has dissolved into water.
This story is cut through with scenes from Antoine’s daily life. At home or at school, he lives normally and is in full control of his disability. These incursions into real life are punctuated by moments of pure poetry. “Madame Rousky, are you closer to heaven or the earth?” whispers our young narrator. “I’m going to catch you, with a million lemons!” The pursuit of this strange missing character leads to an anthology of irresistible scenes where, as if in a lyric élan, the story leaps from its cinematic bounds. Through his remarkable quest, Antoine compounds the beauty that surrounds him. With his help, we learn to see the world from a new, playful angle—one that lets the light in.
Filmmaker, teacher and programmer