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After a year away from home, Chantale, who now lives and studies in Paris, returns to Quebec City, to spend the Holidays with her mother and sister. Against all odds, her father, with whom she has a contentious relationship, has offered to pick her up at the airport and drive her there. Hesitant about seeing him again, she accepts his offer nonetheless.

The Journey, tells the story of their reunion: a path strewn with obstacles, where nothing goes as planned. As night falls and the Father deviates from the planned route, Chantale will be faced with the hold he has on her, and will need to take action.

French with English subtitles.

Director's Statement:

In The Journey, Chantale’s homecoming sets the stage for a relationship where unease and the burden of the past predominate, and where silence rules. I aim to show that parentage does not ensure closeness and that it’s possible to feel like a stranger even amongst family. I decided to show a less common version of a father figure, one of a man overwhelmed by his own reactions, who does not find it in himself to act like an adult protective of his daughter. I chose a female character who rebels against abuse in her own way and, in the end, has to make a choice.

For The Journey to be as authentic as possible, it seemed important to locate its action in Quebec. I gave preference to locations that can capture the imagination of those from far away, and seem familiar to others who live closer by.

Her father being late, a falling night, road deviations, winter, the countryside, each serve as obstacles increasing the dramatic tension. The car scenes and the endless road amplify the unease and the failure to communicate that have set between the characters. I hope the audience feels the abyss between them. Although sitting in the same car, they are actually miles apart.

Ève Saint-Louis
Ève Saint-Louis
Max Walker, Samuel Gagnon, Bahija Essoussi-Gagnon
22 Minutes
Quebec, Canada
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