Critically acclaimed filmmaker, Xavier Dolan is nonetheless annoyed by certain recurring remarks about his work. In promotion for his series The Night Laurier Gaudreault Woke Up (Canal +), he did not hide his annoyance on the solitary set of the show As an aside on this point. When the journalist Nathalie Lévy asks him to describe his work and the role of a central character, interpreted by his dear Anne Dorval (Laurence Anyways, Mommy), he gets carried away with the idea that the place of the mother is part of the DNA of his cinema.
“It’s really starting to piss me off“, begins by saying Xavier Dolan. He refuses that we stick the film label on mothers or even on homosexual characters. “Care not themes. For example, do we make films on the theme of heterosexuality? They are situations, things. We are that way, or else we become a mother, for example. These are stories above all, individuals, characters”explains not without emotion the 33-year-old filmmaker.
For him, it is primarily about characters, stories, universal or individual. To illustrate his annoyance, he then rebounds on the fact that his cinema is also compared to that of Pedro Almodovar, who, in several of his films, brings to the screen the eventful destinies of a mother. He even put the subject on the table during his meeting with the Spanish icon he met at the Cannes Film Festival. Both are thus in agreement to find these shortcuts between their respective work simplistic, and not laudatory as some might believe. Limiting them to these themes is, according to him, a sign of incomprehension of their films.
Need a break
On edge, the Quebec artist wants to take a break now. To the point that the one to whom we owe Just the end of the world with the late Gaspard Ulliel believes he has “come full circle with (his) obsessions“. And hears “take time” for him, “exhausted“by filming the series and eight feature films since 2009.”I feel like I’m coming to a point in my life where I have no more ideas, no desire to tell these ideas“, explained Xavier Dolan to AFP. The director whose last two films, Matthias and Maxime and My life with John F. Donovan, have not had the hoped-for success, feels drained.
“I need to rebuild my desire for this environment, for this profession, for all the sacrifices that entails, especially at the end of the project. Because the preparation, the shooting, it’s always exhilarating for me“, but not the aftermath. Tired, he also feels out of step with a certain cinema: “I have the impression that people now tell stories that are much more political, social and committed, and I don’t know if I would do that film well.“