Article by Chloe Luchs
Miraculum the new feature by director Daniel Grou, under the pseudonym PODZ is the aftermath of a melodramatic bomb that fell with the film’s theme plane crash. Podz, the director of many series such as 19/2 that holds a special place in the hearts of the Quebecois population, should stick to television series.
The storyline of the film follows four parallel stories of characters that struggle with questions of morality: Jehovas witnesses, gamblers, inscestuous uncle and alchoholics are brought together by destiny before or after a ground breaking accident. We follow the conflicts and the anguish of the characters from the first opening shot and quickly understand the pattern in the editing of the narrative: equal time loops of very intense and depressing portraits.
The themes depicted on screen are in my opinion usually exciting in a dramatic feature but the absence of small accomplishment in the entity of the narrative leaves a sense of needed relief. There is never a shot lost to depict difficulty and struggle from the characters and what is not said is filled in by the music.
The director’s signature wide open shots, travelling cameras, close ups on actors severe expressions never forgets to depict difficulty and struggle. When the words are missing, the music is there to remind the viewers of the issue in hand. A mix of popular indie and atmospheric sounds to make sure that not one minute is lost in the intensity of the characters lives.
Nevertheless, the film stars great actors such as Xavier Dolan, Mylene Castonguay, Julien Poulin, Violette Chauveau and Anne Dorval. While the script and the directing does not hold many components to connect with them, the individual work they did on their characters is present and valuable.
Objectively I do not recommend this film but it is a Montreal based production and it is important to support local culture.
Miraculum opens February 28th.