Starring:Lauren Lee Smith, Ben Cotton, Jennifer Bals, Kett Turton, Gabrielle Rose, Catherine Michaud
Grace (Lauren Lee Smith) had not spoken to her recently deceased father, the fabled Québécois filmmaker John Laurentian, in years. So even she's surprised when, on a trip to pick up some of his belongings, she offers to help put together a retrospective of his work. Not only has she not seen any of it (their rift was spectacularly traumatic), she knows nothing about curating. She's also a shut-in who rarely ventures outside the condo she shares with her husband, Ben (Ben Cotton). Grace struggles along fitfully, dozing off while watching her father's movies (all of them involving love triangles), and discussing her inertia with her confidante, Clem (Jennifer Beals). By happenstance, she meets Adam (Kett Turton), a neighbor who's an expert on all things Laurentian and offers to help her out. As Grace digs deeper into her father's life and work — and after a disturbing encounter with his long-time lover and lead actress Sophie (Gabrielle Rose) — she finds herself taking on his persona. A slyly funny family drama about what we inherit (and don't inherit) from our parents, Terry Miles' "Cinemanovels" is the director's most mature and sustained work to date, a sexy slow burn with a sumptuously oversaturated look, courtesy of Miles himself, and some beautifully mounted and often very comical excerpts from her father's films. Miles is supported by a fine cast, also including Catherine Michaud as the young Sophie, but his principal collaborator is Smith. As Grace, she's such a profound mystery to herself that her confusion is transfixing and strangely exhilarating. We're more than happy to stumble along with her as she tries to navigate unfamiliar terrain.