First Clip and Poster for Xavier Dolan’s Cannes Entry ‘Mommy’

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Mommy clip

Anyone who reads this site with any form of regularity knows I love Xavier Dolan‘s work. The first film of his I saw was Laurence Anyways at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, shortly after which I caught up with the rest of his work including I Killed My Mother and Heartbeats before catching Tom at the Farm at the Toronto Film Festival last year. Laurence, as it turns out, made my list of top ten films of 2013.

Now, his latest film, Mommy has premiered in competition at Cannes and has received some rave reviews and today the first clip and the Cannes poster have premiered online.

Starring Anne Dorval, Suzanne Clement and Antoine Olivier Pilon, Mommy tells the story of a widowed single mother (Dorval), raising her violent son (Pilon) alone, finds new hope when a mysterious neighbor (Clement) inserts herself into the mother and son’s household, providing the mother with needed support.

You’ll notice in the clip below that Dolan shot the film in a 1:1 aspect ratio and The Playlist found the following within the film’s production notes:

After having shot a music video in 1:1 last year, it dawned on me that this ratio translated in a somewhat unique emotion and sincerity.

The perfect square in which it consists framed faces with such simplicity, and seemed like the ideal structure for “portrait” shots. No distraction, no affectations are possible in such constricted space. The character is our main subject, inescapably at the center of our attention. Our eyes cannot miss him, her. 1:1 is, besides, the ratio of album covers in the CD industry, and of all of these jackets that have imprinted our imaginaries over time. The Die & Steve Mix 4ever being a leitmotif for us, the use of 1:1 found an additional echo.

It is also, to be frank, my DOP André Turpin’s favorite ratio which he had, apparently, dreamed of using his entire life without ever daring to do so (he’s also a director, and directed the extremely enjoyable Zigrail, Middle-East road trip shot in black and white and featuring some brutal early John Zorn!). After having now spent a year with him busting my balls at about just every shot, regretting our infamous ratio, I’ve learned two things: André loves cinemascope and I, for one, have absolutely no regrets in this.

Dolan used shifting aspect ratios for Tom at the Farm and shot Laurence Anyways at 1.33:1 so he definitely loves shifting the perspective.

This is the first film from the Cannes Film Festival in which I’m jealous I wasn’t there to see it as there is no telling when it will find its way to the States. I have to assume it will have a showing at the Toronto Film Festival later this year, at which I will be sure not to miss it. For now, we have the clip below as well as another photo and the film’s poster.

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Mommy Cannes poster

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Weekend: Nov. 15, 2018, Nov. 18, 2018

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