Based on an acclaimed graphic novel, Mars & Avril is set in Montreal of the future, at the dawn of the first human landing on Mars, and tells the story of a musician who becomes obsessed with his muse.
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Montreal, the future. Elderly jazz musician Jacob Obus (Jacques Languirand) still draws in audiences with his mesmerizing performances, playing instruments based on female models, designed by his much younger pal Arthur (Paul Ahmarani). The latest model, intriguing artist Avril (Caroline Dhavernas), entices both Arthur and Jacob. In the resulting love triangle, the old musician is ultimately victorious and appears to be in love for the first time in his life. But then Avril is accidentally transported to Mars, where the first manned mission just happened to land. Enter Eugène Spaak (Robert Lepage), inventor, cosmologist and Arthur's father, who unveils a new theory about man's desire to reach Mars and helps Jacob find the true meaning of life and love. Written by
Mars et Avril Inc.
"Mars et Avril" was shot in March and April 2009, which is quite a coincidence considering that the lead female character is named Avril (April), and that a mission to Mars also figures into the story. The foreshadowing of this is clearer for Francophones, since "Mars" in French literally designates both the Red Planet and the month of March, directly connecting Mars/March to Avril/April. A re-shoot 2 years later (in March 2011) made it quite obvious that there was a "planet alignment" for the film to be shot over this period. See more »
Yes, this is not a perfect movie, I didn't give 10 stars for achievement. I gave it for pure directing talent. You need to understand Quebec's movie industry. The mainstream movies here benefit heavily from financial government support. Mainstream movies here have average scenarios at best, and most of the time the acting is theatrical when it's not sub par. Even with some of the best paid actors here in the french province. Probably it's all under the influence of a group of people who don't really care about passion and quality.
Not so with this particular picture. Compared with the rest of the local productions, this film is pure bliss. Actually, without being partisan, this picture reminds of one of the best Quebec's directors, Robert Lepage. He also has a role in the film. Actually, Lepage is a genius born at the wrong place where he doesn't receive the deserved recognition. Will Martin Villeneuve be luckier?
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