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On December 6, 1989, a lone gunman walked into Montréal's École Polytechnique, a post-secondary institution focusing primarily in engineering, and began a shooting massacre. This event and its aftermath are shown from the perspective of three people. The first is the shooter himself, who blamed the problems in his life on who he considered feminists, such as female engineering students, who were his primary targets. This event was the culmination of a seven year plan, which had a self-defined end. The second is female mechanical engineering student Valérie, who earlier that day had an interview for her dream internship, working on an aerospace project. The interview process itself was a disturbing one for her in the stereotypical view by the male interviewer, who did not believe that females could work in the business and still have aspirations to have a family. And the third is Jean-François, Valérie's friend and fellow mechanical engineering student, who was one of the few who did ...Written by
Based on the Ècole Polytechnique massacre that took place on December 6, 1989 in Montreal, Polytechnique documents the horrifying tragedy in which a gunman who claimed to be "fighting feminism" murdered 14 young women & wounded several others before turning the gun on himself and is shown from the perspectives of three people; the killer, one of his wounded victims & the victim's friend.
Excellently directed by Dennis Villeneuve (director of Incendies & Prisoners) plus exquisitely captured in black n white, the film grabs the viewers' attention from its opening moment & is told in a manner that only pulls them in, in spite of its dark story. Running at only 77 minutes, it not only recreates the dreadful event but also covers the aftermath of the three main people involved in the story.
The three characters we are introduced too are nicely presented on the screen by their respective actors, each delivering a very fine performance. However, the back-n-forth jump this film takes from time to time turned out to be quite distracting from the main subject. As for its faithfulness with the historical account, the film covers the gunman's killing spree with stunning accuracy.
On an overall scale, Polytechnique is a hard-hitting docudrama that neither tries to make a statement nor offers any kind of redemption but simply offers an insight of what happened on December 6, 1989. It presents a man who lost his way in life & blamed women for all his miseries and yet never really judges him for the judgment part is left to viewers themselves & in that aspect, it's sure to divide its audience.
An unsettling, tense & haunting recount which once experienced won't be easily forgotten, Polytechnique is a daring work of filmmaking crafted in memory of those 14 young women who lost their lives & few who survived but were scarred for life only because of the extreme misogynistic view of an individual who went completely crazy and the film as a whole subtly exhibits just how much hatred there can be in this world. Thoroughly recommended.
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