Film Scouts Diaries

1996 Montreal Film Festival Diaries
Montreal Diary - Day 9

by Henri Béhar

Montreal, Friday, August 30

Haven't seen much of Friday--Green Eyes was that good. Caught up with "Un Air De Famille", by French director Cedric Klapisch. Mom, sis, bro and wife gather in a small cafe in the 'burbs owned by Jean-Pierre Bacri whose birthday it is today. A perfect day, one guesses, for Bacri's wife to leave him. The birthday dinner is a disaster, of the funniest kind. The movie goes double speed, you can't stop laughing, it's a vivid, and vividly wicked (not to mention absurd), portrait of your family as well as mine. Don't miss it.

"Mission: Impossible" director Brian De Palma is a fixture at the Montreal Festival: it's his favorite movie-going marathon and everyone here respects that. A cinephile to end all cinephiles, he practically arranges his yearly schedule around it. It's quite a joy to see this fairly massive man bounce out of the elevator at 8:30 am, bounce into the street toward the theatres with the grace of a ballet dancer and the smile of a child on his way to a picnic. The miracle is that at 2 am, after the last screening, he has the same expectant smile on his face as he goes through the program to decide on tomorrow's fare. How can you not love this man?

Despite the presence of Tcheky Karyo and "East of Eden" James Dean co-star Julie Harris (in a role Shirley MacLaine could have done in her sleep), "Gentle Into the Night", a road-movie about a private detective and an old hitchhiker in Italy who may have a touch of Alzheimer and then again may not, doesn't make a major dent in the day. So, back to Green-Eyes.

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