As a young man, Emile left his Saskatchewan farm life behind to head to university in Britain, with his brothers, the older brusque and controlling Carl and the younger sensitive Freddy, left to run the family farm. This move was despite Freddy showing greater potential and thus probably benefiting more from academic life. However, Carl wouldn't allow Freddy to leave because of his mechanical expertise which was required to tend to the farm equipment. Emile vowed to return, but never did, which affected Freddy the most. Now in early retirement, Emile, still living in Britain, travels to Victoria, Canada to accept an honorary degree from the university there. In Victoria, he decides to stay with now deceased Carl's grown daughter Nadia, and Nadia's ten year old daughter Maria. Emile had never made any attempt over the years to connect with Nadia or Maria, who only really know him by name. On the surface to Nadia, Emile's visit is purely a need on his part for a free bed while in ... Written by
While in British Columbia, Ian McKellen developed an obsession with Beaver Tails - a long donut with sugar on it. He told the director that his character had to have a line with "beaver tails" in it, which is how that piece of dialogue got into the movie See more »
The film was shot in British Columbia but some parts of the action are set in Saskatchewan. In one Saskatchewan scene, there are mountains on the horizon. There are no mountains in (or visible from) Saskatchewan. See more »
In the second part of a twin bill for Ian McKellen, he stars with Deborah Kara Unger in a compelling drama about a man who goes back home after 40 years and has to deal with the past he left behind.
In contrast to Cold Comfort Farm, in which McKellan played a small role, this movie is all about him. He goes back and forth from the present to his life in Canada 40 years before. He even engages in conversations with his brothers, who appear in the present. he works to resolve his crisis and, with the help of 10-year-old Theo Crane, is able to come to a comfortable conclusion.
For those of us who leave home and return, there is a lot of things familiar in this very good movie.
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