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Quebec, 2013

Production : Groupe Épopée





A documentary about the vast political mobilization that took place in Quebec during the spring of 2012. Initially propelled by the student strike for accessible education, the scope of the movement soon broadened to take on the government, the impunity and violence of the Montreal police force, the exploitation of untapped natural resources, and the current economic system. "The strength of the strike is rooted in anonymity. The movement allows commonality to flow through dispersal, reaching into the solitude of each protester. Each one recognizes his or her situation in those of the others; affective resonance is transmuted to a point of fusion. Repression can only break up linear collectivities; here, at every turn, at every corner, the common returns in a swarm." (Épopée, 2012)

A word from Tënk

With slogans, drums and trumpets, with spatulas on cauldrons, with batons and nightly demonstrations, the student struggle of the spring of 2012 expanded to touch upon all sorts of major social issues. Various allied collectives joined the students whose original aim was agitating for free tuition, marching around the demonstrations with their banners and helping–absurd as it sounds–to legitimize the students’ voices: White Heads - Red Square, Teachers Against the Tuition Hike, Mothers in Anger and Solidarity, were all in the same struggle.


Without narration and without words other than the slogans chanted during the demonstrations, the film portrays a strike whose strength lies in its numbers. It depicts both the collective and the anonymous spirit of the struggle through a string of images gathered in a visual archive, a kind of memory bubble that recalls the feelings of strength, anger, fear, and collectivity that the demonstrators used as fuel to run the streets that, for a time, were ours.


And for those who were not there, the film shows not only the magnitude of the struggle, the strength in numbers and the beauty of the movement, but also the police brutality that was used. The images of a local struggle that evokes so many others and that underlines, in times of pandemic, the sense of the greatness and power that blossom in collective gatherings.



Gabrielle Ouimet
Tënk's Artistic Director



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Item 1 of 4