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La guerre des tuques (2D)

French only screening. No English subtitles. Winner of the Golden Screen Award (highest grossing film in Canada)

“For the schoolkids in the mountain village where the animated action of Snowtime! unfolds, winter break is a time for war games. It’s either that or succumb to boredom. Director Jean-François Pouliot isn’t afraid of stillness or silence or painful moments, even as he whips up plenty of goofy stuff too.

“A remake of La Guerre des Tuques (The Dog Who Stopped the War), a live-action French-Canadian kids’ pic that topped Canada’s box office in 1984, Snowtime! features an engaging, mildly throwback visual scheme.

“Parents have no speaking roles, or even onscreen appearances, in this kids’ tale, which revolves around the snow fortress that roly-poly brainiac Frankie designs. His schoolmates split into two teams, one to defend the castle-like structure, the other bent on attacking it. Leading the opposition gang is the otherwise gentle Luke, an 11-year-old whose bugle is a keepsake of the father he barely knew, a casualty of an unnamed war.

“As to the kids’ warfare, in which the snowball is the weapon of choice, it’s boredom-busting fun, injected with a growing awareness of the possible consequences (ice balls are dangerous!). The lessons are delivered with a light allegorical touch. There’s also a budding tween romance between Luke and new girl Sophie. A set of twins speak in stereo, disruptive peacenik Nicky  tries to end the battles, gadget-loving Manolo doesn’t like sharing, and Piers  is devoted to his sweet Saint Bernard, Cleo, whose wacko style of playing fetch makes for a lively action sequence.

“Directing his first animated film, Pouliot (La Grande Séduction) brings the village and the kids to vibrant life. With co-director François Brisson, an experienced animator, he puts a cartoonish spin on wintry Currier and Ives landscapes.” - Hollywood Reporter

 

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