It’s nice to see the name Xavier Dolan becoming more and more recognizable among online readers. It means those of us that love his films have been advocating loud enough and you’ve been listening. Dolan’s last film, Mommy, may be his absolute best (though don’t make that decision before seeing Laurence Anyways) and he has a pair on the horizon that sound wildly intriguing, including his English-language debut, The Death and Life of John F. Donovan starring Jessica Chastain, Kathy Bates, Susan Sarandon and Kit Harington.
However, while Donovan was, at one point, thought to be his next film, we recently learned he’d quietly lined up another film to shoot just before it starring Marion Cotillard titled It’s Only the End of the World and today we have a first look at the movie via The Playlist.
Inspired by the play by Jean-Luc Lagarce, the film will tell the story of a writer (assumed to be played by Vincent Cassel) who goes back to his hometown, planning on announcing his upcoming death to his family. As resentment soon rewrites the course of the afternoon, all attempts of empathy are sabotaged by people’s incapacity to listen and love. Along with Cassel and Cotillard, the film co-stars LÃ©a Seydoux, Nathalie Baye (who starred in Dolan’s Laurence Anyways) and Gaspard Ulliel.
Meanwhile, for many of you another “new” Dolan movie is on the way. The film is Tom at the Farm, which I saw and reviewed back at the 2013 Toronto Film Festival, but it never ended up receiving distribution or even a home video release in the U.S. Amplify Releasing, however, has picked the film up and will bring it to theaters and VOD platforms on August 14.
The psychological thriller is really unlike any of his other films, though an exact description is sort of hard to come by. In my review I wrote, “Cinematically it feels unique in its own right and my first instinct is to call it some sort of B-movie thriller, though that too doesn’t feel right, just as a tonal comparison to something like Repulsion or Diabolique is similarly wrong. Tom at the Farm has a madness all its own.”
Here’s the synopsis:
Tom, a young advertising copywriter, travels to the country for a funeral. There, he’s shocked to find out no one knows who he is, or his relationship to the deceased, whose brother soon sets the rules of a twisted game. In order to protect the family’s name and grieving mother, Tom now has to play the peacekeeper in a household whose obscure past bodes even greater darkness for his trip to the farm.