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Another Planet (1999)

Not Rated | | Drama | 5 August 1999 (USA)
A young women unsure of her cultural heritage, arrives in rural Quebec, Canada.



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Cast overview:
Cassandra Jones
Kevin White ...
Patrick Jones
Marcia Brown ...
Mary Jones
Luc Leblanc
Monique MacDonald ...
Sylvie Leblanc
Tiemoko Simaga ...
Abdoulaye Diallo
Mathieu Dutan ...
Jean Leblanc
Panchetta S. Barnett ...


Cassandra Jones is a young woman from Toronto with a very active imagination and unique view of the world. Feeling trapped by life in her low-income community, and unable to relate to her brother Patrick, a petty criminal, or her overly pious mother, Mary, Cassandra decides to leave Toronto. She applies and is accepted into an exchange program between Quebec and West Africa. When she reaches her Quebec destination, a pig farm, she encounters, Sylvie Leblanc, a woman in need of change, her husband, Luc Leblanc, a man afraid of change and Abdoulaye Diallo, her African exchange counter-part, a man who regrets his decision to seek change. Because none of her expectations are met, Cassandra quickly becomes unhappy on the farm. Her presence creates plenty of tension, much of it humorous. A surprising conclusion comes about after a roller-coaster series of events. Written by <syncopated@sympatico.ca>

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Not Rated





Release Date:

5 August 1999 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Cassandra Jones makes 7 resolutions. They are:
  • Defend Africanness;
  • Never eat brown stuff from fridge ever again;
  • All animals are equal, but some are more disgusting than others - never eat pork ever again;
  • Conserve energy for the true task;
  • Work is sorrow, rest is bliss;
  • Get the hell out of this place;
  • There will be no more resolutions.
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User Reviews

Inspired moments of comedy, but crippled by disjointedness.

The liner notes to this movie lets the viewer in on the fact that a lot of it is riffed from the writer/director's own journals & experiences, and one can tell that she was trying to get across just how confusing it is to be young, black, and questioning your cultural heritage (and yourself), so it comes as somewhat of a disappointment that every time a bit of soul seemed to be imbued into the film, and you really started caring about the characters, she'd chop up the atmosphere & warmth she worked so hard to achieve with interspersed scenes of somewhat poorly dislodged & acted narrative. Sometimes voice-over narrative makes a movie spectacular, but other times it is used as a crutch, either to move the plot forward or to make up for a story that the writer didn't quite know how to SHOW the viewer -- or wasn't sure she wanted to trust the viewer to make out for him or herself.

Without getting too specific here, the ending jolts the viewer once again, first with a tease of a happy ending, then with the letdown of about the most depressing ending I've seen in a long time. Due to its rather sudden switch off, "Another Planet" leaves one with no sense of closure -- and in the process, seems to kill the sense of hope in the viewer that the heroine is striving to maintain in herself (for the narrator and lead actress of this film is, beyond all else, stubbornly stoic).

Of course, one might question whether the director herself simply felt insecure in her own abilities to get the story & feelings across -- it is, after all, the director's freshman film, and for that I will say it was ambitious. I can't imagine it would be easy, as well, to know you were basically going to be the first black Canadian woman to direct a movie. But uniqueness doesn't make an excellent film in & of itself.

But for all its foibles, there are, to be sure, inspired moments in this movie -- even a few scenes where I actually laughed out loud. At the very least, I can guarantee you that, after viewing this movie, you probably won't think about pig farming quite the same way again (that is, of course, if you've ever thought about pig farming, in France or otherwise, at all in the first place).

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