October 2007 Movie: "Picture Claire" - 2001 Never saw this movie before, then, one night, flipping channels on TV, there it was. On a specialty channel called "BRAVO". It caught my attention immediately and drew my interest to continue watching.
Now maybe this is not the type of film your average movie goer is going to enjoy a lot ... but I really enjoyed it ... and if you like "different" or "unique" or "independent" movies - I recommend, watch it.
Probably because I am Canadian and have worked and lived a couple of times in both Toronto and Montreal (but am native of neither - I actually come from a small city right in the middle of these two big cities) I have some insight into the people, places, characters, cultures and ways of these two major Canadian cities. I love to watch these "Canadian" movies whose themes involve Toronto & Montreal ... and the differences. (There was another one recently ... Bon Cop Bad Cop ... Good Cop Bad Cop ... en Anglais et aussi en Francais ... both in English and in French ...a sort of Starsky & Hutch film, one Cop from Toronto, one from Montreal ... see it! ) Tales of Two Cities ! T.O. and M.O. - love those .
Back to "Picture Claire" ... Lead actress ... I would have swore she was a real Quebec girl/fille from Montreal. But I understand she's actually not! Well done! Well acted. Well played. Quebec character, dress, attitude, French, accent, slang and all. She plays the quick, smart, intuitive, Quebec girl ... with emotional intelligence. Knows a lot more than you think ... and can figure out a heck of a lot more in a second - just with a glance - just by looking at you ... ( It's a real character you know! ).
Before reading all the other comments on this film, I too thought there were just too many "coincidences" to make the film actually believable ... but hey ... it's a movie... a story to thrill and entertain also ... and FATE can do some amazing things sometimes ... and stranger things have happened - I'm sure. I guess that's one of the points the film is trying to make.
The other neat little things in the movie - keep you thinking and entertained. And are a good study, I'm sure, for Cinema class. Probably this is a good movie to study. Take note Drama teachers! example. The little dog and the red shoes. The split screens showing Claire's dreams, wishes, or anticipations - visions of what the future might be.
I also liked the minimal dialogue. It allowed you to watch, follow, and understand, and put together the story from the images and the happenings ... not cluttered with dialogue. Keeps you thinking. It's not spoon fed to you with words.
The other actors and parts ... all seemed like real people ... and well played. Made the movie seem real, believable and enjoyable, and drew you in.
The themes of personal identity and image ... Claire taking on the role of the other lady ... and the "take the money and run off to some Caribbean paradise" story ... of course we're all wanting Clarie to get away to a new life. We're cheering for her.
We get the impression that Claire is looking to find herself and also to find a new life. Claire is looking for something ... like we all are ... And we all want her to find these things. She becomes like the "Bad guy/girl on the run" who we all want to get away. ( sort of like Steve McQueen and Ali MacGraw in "The Getaway" movie from 1972 ) Finally all the shots of Toronto .. Union Station ... downtown, Spadina Street ... all the rest ... brought back memories of that place where I once lived and worked ... T.O. ... Go visit sometime ...
Yours Truly ... Mr Vanwinkles (not my real name) email: email@example.com ( ... and personally I thought the film was much better than most of the reviews I've read on the internet. It has a style and story much to my liking! and yes ... a possible cult following ...)