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NEW Barbarian Invasions (DVD)
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The film centers on Rémy's estranged relationship with his son Sebastian (stand-up comic Stéphane Rousseau) a millionaire London businessman. When Sebastian comes to Montreal with his fiancée (Marina Hands), years of resentment against his father boil to the surface. Rémy apparently was not an exemplary father figure. He cheated on his wife, over indulged himself in hedonistic pleasures, and offered less than the support his children needed. Rémy, a socialist, considers his son a "puritanical capitalist" and one who portends the coming "barbarian" invasions. Sebastian resents Rémy for his womanizing and calls him "contentious". In spite of this resentment, however, he starts throwing money around to try and make his father's final days more comfortable, in a way subtly letting his father know that money can buy anything.
"The Barbarian Invasions" is not a perfect film by any means but is one of the strongest Canadian films. Though some of the dialogue is strained, underneath there is a humanity that allows us to connect with our feelings about our own mortality and our relationships with those we care about.Read more ›
family, friends, class, intellectuals, hard headed capitalists vs. soft
headed socialists and more.
A sequel (17 years later!) to Arcand's 'Decline of the American Empire'. the
film finds the same characters gathering together around the impending
death from cancer of their Falstaffian friend Remy. While it's a bit
'prettified' about the pain and indignities of dying from cancer it's
honest and funny and true about the compromises we make in life, the
fact that few of us ever live up to our dreams and ideals, and that even
when we do, we sacrifice something in the process.
A film where the final reconciliations feel earned and complex, not
Hollywood easy. And where irony dances gracefully with sentiment.
It seems like the film might be presented here in the wrong aspect ratio;
1:85, instead of 2:35 (The UK release is in 2:35). However, it still looks
fine, and since I can't say for sure, I'm not going to downgrade an otherwise
Oh my. Get me out of here!
To begin with: It is a warm, funny, loving movie about a guy dying, surrounded, thanks to his (estranged--she kicked him out 15 years earlier, when she found out he had slept with nearly all the women in Montreal) wife, his (successful, rich, employed by a London bank as a risk-management expert--also estranged) son--by all his friends, his loved ones, and as much comfort as money and heroin can provide. But it is not just about him, and dying--as we all die, wondering, wishing we had done....things (my God! he was a teacher--and a good one too), but about the lives of the people who surround him, whom he brings together, who have, and develop, their own meaningful relationships.
Secondly, you love everyone in it--except for Pierre's bitchy wife--why didn't he stick with the girl he met in the message parlour in "Decline of the American Empire"? But Pierre seems to love her, so perhaps, had she been part of the circle, we would have found things to love about her as well.
Third--oh, let's quit this numerical stuff--I wanted nothing so much as to go to Montreal after I had seen this movie. And I live in Berkeley! It is SO beautiful there. As for Universal Health Care, it may be far from perfect--but do you know where all those people lying in the hospital corridor would be lying here? ON THE STREET.Read more ›
Remy (and indelible characterization by Remy Girard) has lived a life of sexual freedom, intellectual pursuits (he is a Professor of History and defender of free thinking), and seems to have placed his family and wife in the periphery. Suddenly faced with a diagnosis of a rampantly aggressive and untreatable cancer, he rages against the world that no longer holds his tenets of civilization dear: he faces his mortality convinved he has no legacy to leave the world he entered. His ex-wife notifies his worldly and wealthy Baby-Boomer generation son in his important office in London to return home, despite the fact that the son sees little point in rushing back to the father who was never a father to him. The son Sebastien (in a sophisticated, engrossing performance by Stephane Rousseau) flies to Montreal and, in his manner of control, takes over, planning the care of this 'shameful father' in a manner that allows him to provide the best amenities while putting more emotional distance from his father.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
A very good film about a family dealing with the assisted death of the head of the household. The story takes place in Quebec where assisted death is accepted.Published 27 days ago by Ross Chapman
Director Denys Arcand. Winner of a 2003 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award as well as 2004 Césars for Meilleur Film (Best Feature Film) and Meilleur Réalisateur... Read morePublished 3 months ago by TheSphinx
Tout aussi actuel aujourd'hui qu'à l'époque
Les blagues sont ascerbes comme jadis
En somme, une bonne détente réflective, voir contemplative
This is truly a splendid sequel to the acclaimed, 'Le déclin de l'empire Américain'. Taking us twenty years later as a follow-up to the main characters' development... Read morePublished on June 7 2012 by sam
I watched the film for a french class and enjoyed it quite a bit. I found watching the film in french with English subtitles a little confusing and i began to wonder if the the... Read morePublished on Nov. 19 2007 by Kris2fur cepensir
Ce film est absolument génial! Le scénario est excellent et les acteurs splendides! A voir!Published on June 4 2005
(For the earlier reviewer, the final song is "L'Amitié" -- friendship -- by Françoise Hardy, who has been recording since the 1960s. Read morePublished on Sept. 30 2004 by Tom Trueman
A scathing commentary on the Canadian health care system, combined with a wonderful family story. Just excellent.Published on Aug. 26 2004
The best movie I have seen in years!!
Can anyone help me learn the name of the final song?