11 June 2009

Movie Review: Lilies


There are few things in a film that are more moving than well-crafted tragedy. Lilies is one of those movies. There is only one woman in the entire movie who appears for 5 or 6 seconds during the opening credits. The story is of an older prisoner giving a confession to the local Bishop. However, once the bishop is inside the prison chapel, he is held captive while the old man and his younger prisoner friends reenact the events of a summer in 1912 in the little provincial Quebecois town that the old man (Simon) and the Bishop (Bilodeau) grew up in.

Simon retraces a love story between him and another young man, Vallier. The end of the beautiful love story is intimately tied into Bilodeau's (then) own strong desire for Simon and Simon's complete and total rejection of those feelings.

The movie is really a clever presentation of a play within a play and utilizes an all-male cast. However, the story and the actors are so compelling that Lydie-Ann, who is supposed to be a young white, French aristocrat, is played by, a very tall and Black, Alexander Chapman, and you do not see him as a tall Black man but as a cunning white French woman. "Oh the tyranny of the truth."

When I was a teenager, my best friend had somehow heard about it and we rented it and watched it -- three or four times. I have watched it a few more times since then over the years and still enjoy it although, as I grow older, it seems that the tragic elements appear earlier and earlier in the film.

The movie is a great "fairytale" or ethical story to guide young gay men away from the destructive elements of jealous and self-delusion.

5 comments:

  1. very very interesting... do you happen to know where i can get a copy of this? or is this downloadable as well.

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  2. i already sent HART the pictures the same night we met.

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  3. first saw this in the TLA website.... and i've always wanted to see it eversince... however i still haven't.....

    and im sad..."(

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  4. what can i say? you always know the best movies. hanapin ko yan.

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  5. @commuter: e-mail me and i'll get you a copy.

    @yj: see response to commuter

    @cb: lol. maybe we should have a mini-film festival night at someone's house?

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