Set during summer in the Îles-de-la-Madeleine of Quebec, Mario and Simon are two brothers living in a fishing village with their mother, who runs a grocery story, and their father, who runs a fishing business. Mario is ten years old, mute and autistic. He is withdrawn from reality and living in a surreal world that only his older brother Simon and his stuffed coyote share. Mario is very close with and deeply admires his 18 year old brother, whom he depends upon for love and attention. Simon reads Arabian Knights stories to Mario, dresses him in sheik's clothing and they play out imaginary wars in an Arabian style fortress that they built. Everything changes when Helene, a beautiful young tourist comes between the two brothers. Simon falls in love and begins to neglect his brother to spend time with her. Mario feels rejected and discovers what hate and jealously are. He sets about a chain of events that lead to tragedy. Written by
Cute Xavier Norman Peterman plays the autistic boy Mario in this French Canadian movie. He uses his facial expressions to perfection in playing Mario, the boy who understands but chooses not to speak.
The story is about the summer that Mario's teenaged older brother Simon, played by 26 year old Francis Reddy, finds a girl and starts to build a life for himself. We see Mario adjusting, in his silent way, to the loss of his big brother who has been a constant comfort in his life.
Another star in the movie is the beautiful Gaspe coast on the Gulf of St Lawrence. The bare but beautiful landscape is a good background to this summer adventure.
This is not a children's movie. It portrays the world of an autistic child to perfection. See Mario struggle to communicate with his family. See his face as he understands their jokes, receives their affection, yet chooses not to speak and join in. And see that beautiful bond between two brothers, made more special by the vulnerability of the little one.
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