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Leolo (1992)

Léolo (original title)
Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama | 2 April 1993 (USA)
Trailer
2:24 | Trailer
Young Leo Lauzon is torn between two worlds - the squalid Montreal tenement that he inhabits with his severely dysfunctional (and largely insane) family, and the imaginative world that he ... See full summary »

Director:

Jean-Claude Lauzon
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8 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gilbert Sicotte ... Narrator (voice)
Maxime Collin ... Leolo
Ginette Reno ... Mother
Julien Guiomar ... Grandfather
Pierre Bourgault ... Word Tamer
Giuditta Del Vecchio Giuditta Del Vecchio ... Bianca
Andrée Lachapelle ... Psychiatrist
Denys Arcand ... Director
Germain Houde ... Teacher
Yves Montmarquette Yves Montmarquette ... Fernand
Lorne Brass Lorne Brass ... Fernand's Enemy
Roland Blouin Roland Blouin ... Father
Geneviève Samson Geneviève Samson ... Rita
Marie-Hélène Montpetit Marie-Hélène Montpetit ... Nanette
Francis St-Onge Francis St-Onge ... Leolo, age 6
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Storyline

Young Leo Lauzon is torn between two worlds - the squalid Montreal tenement that he inhabits with his severely dysfunctional (and largely insane) family, and the imaginative world that he constructs for himself through his writings, where he's Leolo Lozone, son of a Sicilian peasant (conceived in a bizarre act involving a tomato). And his experiences of growing up (especially his sexual development) affect his response to both these worlds... Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The book which appears in the movie is "L'avalée des avalés" (translated as "Swallow of the Swallowed") by Canadian writer Réjean Ducharme. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: Because I dream, I am not.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK censors made 2 cuts totaling 32 seconds. One showed young boys stroking a woman's breasts. The other was for cruelty to a cat. See more »

Connections

Featured in Lauzon Lauzone (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

L'Orange
Lyrics by Gilbert Bécaud
Music by Pierre Delanoë
Performed by Gilbert Bécaud
See more »

User Reviews

 
Laboriously Strange and Unique: You Might Hate it at first, but it Grows on You
2 July 2010 | by chimpikiSee all my reviews

One thing I'll say about Leolo is that you definitely won't forget it. Thankfully, though, and quite necessarily, I'm not limited to that single sentence. Love it or hate it, this is an experience that will stick with you, and which over time will most likely come up on the positive side of your filmgoing experiences. The film's protagonist, Leolo Lauzon, is a young French Canadian boy who claims to be a son of Italy, a notion he accredits to a miraculous encounter between his mother and a tomato grown in Italy. He is the youngest in his family, and at that stage in his life, he is also the most sane. In his spare time, he escapes the daily dysfunction of growing up by writing eloquently on scraps of paper, which he then discards, and which are then read by a local homeless man: the texts serve as the film's narration. Though essentially a story about growing up, this is a film that can be read from many angles, and whose thematic depths span everywhere between the themes of family, fear, hate, lust, and love. Yet, in spite of its broadness, the film manages to be simultaneously and paradoxically intimate, epic, far-fetched, and spot-on.

I watched this movie under the pretext that it was either THE best, or at least ONE of the best Canadian films ever made, and so my expectations were quite high. The other film that holds claim to this distinction is called "Mon Oncle Antoine," directed by Claude Jutra, and which I highly recommend. That film is the type you can watch and reflect on with an immediate love that will never wane over the passage of time. Leolo, on the other hand, is like a scape on the knee: at first it's painful and unpleasant, but soon it builds and forms into a scab that you find satisfying to pick. Excuse the obscurity of that analogy, but if you watch the film I think you'll find that it applies quite nicely.

Some might find Leolo alienating, others revolting, and some just plane weird. Personally, I recommend that you turn off your internal "parental discretion" metre, and just watch this film for what it is, which at times is the most visceral, human, and beautifully shot films you are likely to witness. In terms of cinematic indulgence, it might have a few equals, but there are none that do it better. Initially, I rated this movie a 4/10, feeling as though it was terribly overrated, but you know what? It grew on me. I find that on a fairly regular basis, this movie and particular scenes enter my mind, and they do so for all the right reasons. I find this odd, as many of the movies I claim to love do not do this very same thing, which I think says a lot about the substance and strength of this film. It tells me that the moments that might be considered exploitive or overly-explicit, and maybe even illegal, are there for more than mere shock. In closing, I simply have to implore you to watch this film, and though you may rue the experience the first time, take my word for it that you won't regret it, though that might take a few weeks.


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Details

Official Sites:

-Bande annonce

Country:

Canada | France

Language:

French

Release Date:

2 April 1993 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Leolo See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$611,703

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$611,703
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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