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Michel, the Belgian son of a paralyzed writer, husband of a Congolese refugee, and father of a future tennis champion, is an erratic inventor misunderstood by his employer. At age 41, he learns that he was born secretly in a barn in Québec, in the town of Sainte-Cécile, and given up for adoption shortly afterward. In the summer of 2000, Michel goes there and finds a sleepy village that soon makes him want to run back home. There, he meets a man who drives a car with a technologically advanced hybrid engine. On their way back to Montréal, an accident changes their lives forever, and what is uncovered will challenge the very future of the automotive industry. Welcome to "Congorama."Written by
As an English speaking Canadian, I have experienced first hand the divide between Anglophone and Francophone Canadians. I understood it as cultural insulation as opposed to the true connection between Quebec and rest of the french speaking world. This delightful tale of a down and out Belgian inventor and quest to find out where he comes from, is a strong allegory for Quebec and the rest of us. The acting is subtle, the characters are rich and interesting and it avoids so many clichés that would be easy to fall into. The main character is so real that his longing and personal angst creates a pervasive melancholy to the film. The pace was a bit slow for my partner and I found that this only added to the movie. What I found most interesting was this search for identify motif that Philippe Falardeau so expertly weaves throughout the film. Whether it is the Congoese, Quebecois, adopted or anyone of us. When Jules, his black son, asks Michel(a dumpy white Belgian) "what did I get from you?", Michel is stuck to respond. Looking at his adoptive father, Michel says they all have the same nose. Don't we all.
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