LILIES/LES FELUETTES

Création : 1996/JOHN GREYSON (Director)

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« Stunning... Super...A fierce poetic vision.
New York Film Festival, 1996




A sumptuous feast for the eyes, ears, heart and mind.
Toronto Intrenational Film Festival,1996


Midway beteen Shakespearen idyll and Genetesque rebel, Lilies display a cunning force of invention... It's the visual design of Lilies truly captivates..., B.Ruby Rich, SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL, 1997 »
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    Vous écoutez un extrait de la trame sonore du film LILIES/LES FELUETTES composée par Mychael Dana, interprétée par The Hilliard Ensemble, Londres.You are listening an extract of the soundtrack of LILIES, the movie, composed by Mychael Dana, interpreted by The Hilliard Ensemble, London.

    Buy the DVD.

    Film réalisé par John Greyson en 1996 d'après la pièce, Les Feluettes ou la Répétition d'un drame romantique.

    LILIES

    Visionnez la bande annonce de LILIES/See the trailer from the New-York Time



    Synopsis

    Lilies is set in a Quebec prison in 1952. Jean Bilodeau (Marcel Sabourin), the local bishop, is brought to the prison to hear the confession of Simon Doucet, a dying inmate. But Doucet in fact has a very different revelation for Bilodeau: he has enlisted his fellow inmates to stage a play set in 1912, when Bilodeau and Doucet were childhood friends.

    The play within the film
    Most of the film consists of the play within the film, presented by the inmates for Bilodeau and Doucet. Because it is taking place within a prison, the female roles are portrayed by the male prisoners. The young Bilodeau and Doucet are performed by younger inmates. The play dramatizes a period during Bilodeau and Doucet's childhood in Roberval, Quebec, when they were both coming to terms with their homosexuality. Doucet has a romantic relationship with Vallier, while Bilodeau remains repressed and tries desperately to convince Simon to join the seminary with him. All three are involved in a school play dramatizing the martyrdom of Saint Sebastian, with Simon in the lead role.

    The St. Sebastian play's homoerotic undertones contribute to Bilodeau's sexual awakening, which involves an unrequited love for Doucet.

    When Vallier's mother unwittingly reveals in the presence of Doucet's father that Doucet and her son were kissing for real during a rehearsal of the play, Doucet's father beats him, embarrassing and shaming Doucet. Repressing his feelings for Vallier, Doucet becomes acquainted with, and later engaged to marry, Lydie-Anne (Alexander Chapman), a young Parisian baroness who is visiting Roberval on the motive of having met Vallier's estranged father in Paris and him having mentioned Roberval. However, Vallier's mother, the Countess de Tilly, encourages Vallier to attend the engagement party and declare his love for Doucet.Doucet and Vallier subsequently meet for one last romantic encounter.

    Lilies (Les Feluettes) sur Youtube 1

    Lilies (Les Feluettes) sur Youtube 2

    Lilies (Les Feluettes) sur Youtube 3

    Bilodeau witnesses the pair making love, is spurred to confess his love for Doucet, and when rejected, sets in motion a chain of events that winds up killing Vallier.
    Brent Carver (The Contesse) and Alexander Chapman (Lydie-Anne de Rozier). Triptych media et Galafilms

    The play reveals that Vallier's murder is the crime for which Doucet was falsely arrested and convicted. Thus, the play was designed not as Doucet's confession of his sins, but a ploy to extract a confession of guilt from Bilodeau. As a result, Bilodeau asks Doucet to kill him, but Doucet refuses.



    Jason Cadieux (young Simon). Triptych media et Galafilms

    L’évêque Bilodeau est appelé en prison pour confesser un détenu. Avec l’aide de co-détenus et du personnel carcéral, Simon a monté, pour ce dernier, un événement théâtral qui relate sa propre histoire et son lien avec celle de l’évêque. Alternent dans le récit une succession magistrale de tableaux conjuguant épisodes du passé et scènes de l’événement théâtral en prison. Au royaume du Saguenay-Lac Saint-Jean, au début du siècle, l’histoire d’amour secrète entre deux adolescents, Simon et Vallier, se termine par la mort tragique de Vallier dans un incendie. Même s’il clame son innocence, leur liaison et les apparences font que Simon est encore en prison quarante ans plus tard. De quelle part le confesseur aura-t-il à se confesser dans cette histoire?

    Handlung [Bearbeiten]Bischof Bilodeau kommt 1952 in ein Gefängnis in Québec um in der Kapelle eine Beichte abzunehmen. Simon, ein wegen Mordes verurteilter Gefangener, ist ein Bekannter des Bischofs aus der Jugendzeit. Er will, wie sich bald herausstellt, die Wahrheit von damals ans Licht bringen und Rache nehmen. Die bestochenen Gefängniswärter greifen nicht ein, als Bilodeau gewaltsam festgehalten wird.

    Er und Simon sehen zu wie die Mitgefangenen ein Theaterstück von Gabriele D'Annunzio inszenieren um alte Erinnerungen aus dem Jahr 1912 wachzurufen. Damals sind der junge Simon und sein Freund Vallier homoerotisch ineinander verliebt. Der junge frömmelnde Bilodeau ist ebenfalls in den attraktiven Simon verliebt, den er immerzu beobachtet, wird aber von ihm zurückgewiesen.

    Das Leben der Ortsbewohner von Roberval ändert sich als die dunkelhäutige Lydie-Anne mit einem Heißluftballon landet. Sie ist ein reiches verführerisches Fräulein aus Paris und wird Babylonierin genannt. Simon wird von seinem Vater gezüchtigt und beendet deshalb seine Beziehung zu Vallier. Er beschließt sich nun für Frauen zu interessieren. Bald verliebt sich Lydie-Anne in ihn und sie verloben sich. Bevor Simon mit ihr im Ballon abreist, gestehen sich er und Vallier erstmals offen ihre Liebe zueinander.

    Valliers Mutter, die verarmte Gräfin de Tilly, wartet schon jahrelang vergeblich auf Nachricht von ihrem Mann. Ihre Scheinwelt bricht zusammen als ihr Lydie-Anne offenbart, dass sie den Grafen, seine junge Frau und deren Tochter in Lyon getroffen hat. Auf ihren Wunsch hin erdrosselt Vallier seine Mutter. Bilodeau rät Simon und Vallier zur Flucht, da die gesamte Einwohnerschaft hinter ihnen her sei. Simon wird beschuldigt, das Kloster angezündet zu haben. Bilodeau will einen Kuss von Simon, was dieser als krank zurückweist. Daraufhin setzt Bilodeau das Zimmer in Brand und sperrt die beiden Liebenden darin ein. Er läuft davon, kehrt aber zurück und rettet den bewusstlosen Simon. Vallier stirbt. Bei der Gerichtsverhandlung lügt Bilodeau und gibt Simon die Schuld, der daraufhin wegen des Todes von Vallier verurteilt wird.

    Schließlich nach vierzig Jahren gesteht der Bischof, dass er auch Vallier hätte retten können, es aber nicht getan hat. Er fordert Simon auf ihn zu töten. Dieser aber küsst ihn und lässt ihn mit einem Messer in der Hand alleine in der Kapelle zurück.

    Production

    Réalisation : John Greyson
    Production : Robin Cass, Arnie Gelbart et Anna Stratton
    Scénario : Michel Marc Bouchard
    traduction: Linda Gaboriau
    Cinématographie : Daniel Jobin
    Montage : André Corriveau et Jane Tattersall
    Dessin des costumes : Lynde Muir
    Design de production: Sandra Kybartas
    Son : Don Cohen, Keith Elliott, Scott Purdy, Scott Shepherd et Don White

    Cast/Distribution


    Ian D. Clark : Père Saint-Michel
    Marcel Sabourin : L’évêque
    Aubert Pallascio : Simon, vieux
    Jason Cadieux : Simon, jeune
    Danny Gilmore : Vallier
    Matthew Ferguson : Bilodeau, jeune
    Robert Lalonde : Le Baron
    Gary Farmer : Thimothée
    Alexander Chapman : Lydie-Anne
    John Dunn-Hill : Warden
    Paul-Patrice Charbonneau : Chauffeur
    Michel Marc Bouchard : Photographe
    Khanh Hua, Benoît Legrandeur, Pierre Leblanc, Jean Lévesque, Antoine Jobin, Alain Gendreau, Simon Simpson, Eddy Rios et Martin Stone : Ensemble des prisonniers


    Feuille de route


  • Canada 7 September 1996 (Toronto Film Festival)
    USA 11 October 1996 (New York Film Festival)
    Netherlands 29 January 1997 (International Film Festival Rotterdam)
    USA 26 June 1997 (San Francisco International Lesbian and Gay Film Festival)
    Japan 16 August 1997
    USA 17 October 1997 (Rochester ImageOut Lesbian and Gay Film and Video Festival)
    Finland 25 October 1997 (Turku Pervoplanet Film Festival)
    USA November 1997 (Chicago Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)
    UK December 1997
    Germany 26 February 1998
    Brazil 30 October 1998 (Mix Brasil Festival of Sexual Diversity)
    Italy 7 June 2000 (Venice Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)
    Czech Republic 15 November 2002 (Brno Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)
    South Africa 13 March 2004 (Johannesburg Pride South Africa Gay and Lesbian Film Festival)

    Awards/Prix

    The film was nominated for 14 Genie Awards at the 17th Genie Awards. It won the following awards for Best Motion Picture, Best Sound (Don Cohen, Keith Elliott, Scott Purdy, Scott Shepherd, Don White), Best Costume Design (Linda Muir), Best Art Direction (Sandra Kybartas)


    also nominated for Best direction, Best Adapted Screenplay, 3 Best Actors in a Leading Role (Danny Gilmore, Jason Cadieux and Matthew Ferguson), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Alexander Chapman), Best Sound Editing, Best Original Score, Best Editing and Best Cinematography.


    The film also won those following awards:

  • Montreal World Film Festival, 1996 - Best Canadian Film
  • L.A. Outfest, 1997 - Outstanding Narrative Feature
  • Best movie, Washington gay and lesbian film Festival, 1997
  • Austin Gay and Lesbian International Film Festival, 1997 - Audience Favorite
  • Locarno International Film Festival, 1996 - Golden Leopard
  • GLAAD Media Awards, 1998 - Outstanding Film
  • La Salamandre d'or, Festival de Blois, 1996
  • Festival International du Film Lesbien et Gay de San Francisco, Prix de la Meilleure réalisation à John Greyson, 1997

    Critiques/Reviews

    "Le réalisateur John Greyson a réussi à adapter pour l'écran une pièce qui reposait davantage sur l'évocation que sur l'illustration, sans pour autant la trahir ou diluer sa charge romantique. Il a décloisonné le huis clos d'origine en le transposant dans un lieu géographique imaginaire dans lequel les hommes, co-détenus du héros, tiennent tous les rôles. Un artifice qui se fait vite oublier pour orienter les spectateurs vers l'essentiel du récit axé sur les jeux de miroirs et les faux-semblants. Greyson a privilégié les images au symbolisme appuyé, en harmonie avec la photographie dont les tons chauds évoquent les vieilles illustrations. La mise en scène peut parfois s'avérer académique avec une propension pour les gros plans; mais la direction d'acteurs est irréprochable. Brent Carver campe une aristocrate déchue avec beaucoup de finesse." Martin Bilodeau, LE DEVOIR, août 1996

    "Une adaptation remarquable des Feluettes!... Les élans romanesques des personnages atteignent parfois de tels sommets d'émotions qu'ils en virent à la poésie..."Marc-André Lussier, LA PRESSE, août 1996

    "Ala fois film lyrique, onirique et romantique-fantastique, Le Feluettes joue sur plusieurs régistres, louvoyant entre passé et présent, entre soirées d'aristrocrares européens de passage en sol québécois et les murs de la prison, entre vérité et mensonge, entre vrai et faux, entre réalisme et illusion. En ce sens, ce film demande une disponibilité de tous les instants et une ouverture d'esprit face à la complexité du récit duquel se détache une profonde sensibilité." Normand Provancher, LE SOLEIL, décembre 1996


    "4 stars!... Thanks to Greyson's sure touch, the film builds into something powerfull and rich, a compelling look at the desperate stuggle to find happiness in a unhappy world.", Steven Mazey. THE OTTAWA CITIZEN, decembre 1996

    "...So perfectly that the folks who and out Genie laurels have graced Lilies whit no fewer than 14 nominations." Rick Groen, THE GLOBE AND MAIL, octobre 1996

    "Lilies' Fantastic voyage... Put a gay Québécois love story in the and of a Toronto film director ans what do you get? Awards, nominations and critical acclaim, just for a start... ", Matthew Haye, HOUR, october 1996

    "Porté à l'écran Les Feluettes et en anglais, c'est le double défi que John Greyson a brillamment relevé. Un film d'amour et de mort qui prend des libertés avec le cinéma. Tant mieux!", Éric Fourlanty, VOIR, octobre 1996

    "Stunning beautifull Lilies is a must-see... Even obsessive love is beautifull, Lilies suggest - in fact, it may be when love is most irrational that is most nearly approaches the divine..." , Greg Varner, THE WASHINGTON BLADE, 1998


    Los Angeles Time, review, 1997




    Lilies in Japan.


    Carnet de notes
    The Politics of Memory in John Greyson's Lilies by keith vincent

    from Lilies John Greyson, the director of the movie musical Zero Patience, a retelling from an activist's perspective of the story of the gay man the mass media viciously labeled, "the man who brought AIDS to North America", has come out with another great film. The film is called Lilies and it opens in Japan in early August. Greyson has always written his own scripts in the past, but this time he chose to adapt a popular play by the well-known French Canadian playwright Michel Marc Bouchard called Les Feluettes, ou La Répétition d'une drame romantique. As the title suggests, the original work is not free of a slightly overly aestheticized French sensibility, but adding Greyson's keen visual sense and activist stance to the mix has resulted a truly beautiful and politically potent film.

    Michel Marc Bouchard et John Greyson sur le plateau de tournage./Michel Marc Bouchard and John Greyson on the film set.Triptych media et Galafilms


    If Zero Patience had the "politics of memory" as one of its important themes, in Lilies, this has been brought to an even greater level of sophistication. The year is 1952. An elderly Bishop named Bilodeau arrives at a prison to hear a prisoner's confession. When he enters the confessional, a cramped space vaguely reminiscent of a porno buddy booth, he finds Simon, the object of his unrequited love from forty years before, sitting on the other side of the partition. But no sooner have they spoken a few words than the door is suddenly locked from the outside. From that point on the Bishop finds himself obliged to watch a play performed by the other prisoners for him alone. The play tells the story of a crime committed by Bilodeau out of jealousy for Simon's lover Vallier, and skips back and forth in a series of brilliant transitions from the crude stage set on the prison floor to a cinematic depiction of the pastoral town in Northern Quebéc where the boys grew up. Moreover, from the first scene in the play we find the young Simon and Vallier rehearsing yet another play, The Martyrdom of Saint Sebastion, the lines of which they appropriate throughout the film to express their love for each other. It was the false testimony of Bilodeau in court that got Simon put away for forty years in jail and he has produced this play as a way of discharging his resentment and hatred of Bilodeau. His plan is to use the play to extract a confession from the Bishop himself.


    from Lilies
    Lilies is a gay film. I worked as Greyson's interpreter when he came to Japan to do publicity for the film and almost all of the reporters who interviewed him here either completely ignored the gay issue or offered roundabout praise for the film, saying it "was a universal love story that transcended the question of homosexuality." Greyson's reply to these comments was always the same. If the film has universal value, he argued, that is because it is so attentive to the specificity of gay experience. As he wrote in the director's statement, "In Lilies, grand gestures and ironic flourishes are used to explore the mundanely brutal ways that parents, priests, and 'proper' communities annihilate the love of two boys for one another."

    It is worth mentioning that all of the roles in this film are played by men. This was partly by necessity given that all of the actors in the "play" are inmates in an all-male prison. But it also serves as an implicit critique of homophobia as a pathology of male homosociality. No attempt has been made to cover over the masculine features of the actors playing female roles. They wear no make-up and their costumes are extremely simple. But the exquisite subtlety of the acting makes the question of biological gender seem meaningless next to the appeal of the characters as individuals. For the prisoners, all of whom are gay men who experience violence and discrimination on a daily basis in this man's world of the prison, participating in this play is a means to escape for a few hours into a different world. It is, in the words of Bouchard, a "love story that no one ever told me." It is a gay love story.

    At the same time, however, it was Bilodeau who dealt the final blow that brought this love story to an end. Bilodeau, who is himself a homosexual and who has never been able to face his own desires. As viewers of this film we follow Bilodeau as he is forced to recall this history, as he reflects on his complicity with a homophobic society, on his own self-hatred. This film is worth a look.


    PROTEUS, the most recent film by John Greyson



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