Incendies Reviews

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½ August 2, 2015
Incendies is a pleasantly unpleasant emotional experience all the way.
½ February 12, 2015
Powerful stuff. Villeneuve is one of the best directors of the decade thus far.
½ September 11, 2013
I've wanted to see this film ever since I saw 'Prisoners' by the same director, but put on the back burner after I was disappointed by 'Enemy'. I really enjoyed this French Canadian film and even though it had subtitles, I still really enjoyed it. I didn't know much about the film and the summary on IMDb was vague, but that's for the best as you shouldn't know much about this film going into it as you will probably enjoy it more not knowing what it is about. The film is a little long and could have used some better editing to help the twists be more shocking, but the story and the performances more than make up for it. Also it uses Radiohead music 3 times in the film (definitely didn't expect to hear Radiohead in a French film that takes place in the Middle East). Overall, I really enjoyed this film and even though it's a little long, it is a very powerful and even sad at times, film.
½ June 21, 2015
Denis Villeneuve's Incendies is a shocking tale, and Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin is a shining star in this film.
May 8, 2015
(10/10) ?????????????? ?????? ???????? ???????????????? ??? "???????"
April 21, 2015
I would of given it 5 stars but I found it to disturbing
March 9, 2014
Lo mejor de Denis Villeneuve, una historia sórdida con grandes momentos.
March 22, 2015
Show the brutality of war and what it creates from a Middle eastern perspective, This french movie is what Inception is if not made in a sci-fi way.
March 13, 2015
It's messy, overlong, and a touch melodramatic, but those flaws pale before Incendies' devastating emotional impact.
August 28, 2012
tesadà 1/4fler biraz abartılı olsa da etkileyici bir film...
½ February 15, 2015
beautiful camerawork, full emotion, great storytelling, suspenseful or maybe disturbing? impressive acting peformance, and sometimes confusing, it's beautiful.
February 4, 2015
"Amazing,Incredible & Super powerful"
½ January 30, 2015
Before I went to see Snowtown, I made sure to mentally prepare myself for the viewing challenge which I knew lay before me. Being based on subtext and nuance, it's not the easiest thing to get a complete grasp of after one viewing, even though that's all you ever want to see of it. I dearly, dearly wish that someone had warned me before I bought my ticket for Incendies, as it turns out to be not just a drama but a character study, a political statement and a slow burning twisty-turny thriller which has the capability to fry your brain completely. 

The film details the life, both past and present, of the recently deceased Nawal Marwan, and her twin children, Simon and Jeanne. After leaving them some slightly cryptic tasks in her will Jeanne drags her brother along on her quest to honour her mother's last wishes. But the road which she drags him down doesn't end where anyone expects. 

Denis Villeneuve directs this searing mystery with an ungodly talent. After an opening which Kubrick would be proud of, he fills the screen with shot after beautiful shot which manage to capture both the harshness of the surroundings and the inner feelings of the character. He moves easily between the dreary suburbia of Canada and the unforgiving wilderness of an unnamed Middle-Eastern country in the throes of religious and political turmoil. The savage war serves as a background for Villeneuve's equally savage story of a young woman's journey from a headstrong and impulsive girl to a strong, resilient woman who stays in the minds of even the most vicous war criminals. Villeneuve is unafraid to dwell on the bursts of violence which are inherit in the setting of the film but they are never gratuitous or glorified, making it that much more sickening when they occur. He shows himself to be an extremely diverse director too, handling the drama as adeptly as he does the violence, capturing what's not being said with the subtletly and deftness of touch of someone with a rap sheet twice the length of his own. 

The script is fittingly restrained. No explanations or putting on of the brakes for the unlucky viewer who falls behind, no sir. And with a narrative structure which makes Pulp Fiction look like a children's book, it's very easy to lose track of both time and character. We skip back and forth, seemingly at random, from the ongoing search and Nawal's turbulent past, but in the film's powerful finale it's as if you can almost see all the threads being pulled together. It's not as pretentious a trick as The Prestige, nor as bamboozling as The Usual Suspects, but it's as hard hitting as a sledgehammer to the stomach. 

Anchoring this entire labyrinth are the wonderful performances, particularly on behalf of Lubna Azabal. With an incredibly restrained yet distressingly realistic performance, Azabal invests her character with nuance and intricacy. The character may not look like much chop on paper, but the life and reality which Azabal fills her with is simply astounding to see. Most fascinating to see is the distinction between her character in the past and her character in the future. The huge differences between the two sides of the coin makes the journey in between fascinating and Azabal executes it perfectly. Her character's children also pull their weight in the film, Gaudette's Simon is a powerhouse of angst where Poulin's Jeanne is his polar opposite: cool, calm and collected in any situation. And when the final revelation hits home to these two characters, their shock and despair is palpable without feeling like a soap opera. The two share a beautiful moment in the swimming pool where they confront their feeling and share their unbearable grief with a single embrace. The supporting cast may not have all that much to do, focussing mainly on the three at the centre of the film, but Elaaziz is as terrifying as his character would demand and Remy Girard makes a solid notary as Jean Lebel. 

But apart from Azabal's incredible performance, the star of the show is the beautiful style employed by everyone involved. The difficult and intimidating structure of the narrative is fantastically original and groundbreaking, investing more trust than usually expected in its audience, the film looks beautiful in every scene and the sprawling storyline is able to make its mark on various themes from politics to family to life itself. It may not be for everybody but it's definitely for this guy. I'm sitting here with my thumbs pointing at my face by the way. This guy! 

Defining Scene: 
Nawal Marwan takes a bus through the country and doesn't quite reach her destination.
November 12, 2014
Incendies is a modern masterpiece by Canadian director Denis Villeneuve. Story was weak but it was astonishing how Villeneuve keeps that suspense throughout the movie. Plot itself was very disturbing, it was sentimental and emotionally haunting. Lubna Azabal was absolutely mesmerising, one of the best performance I've seen lately by any actress. Denis Villeneuve is starting to become one of my favourite directors, his other two works Enemy and Prisoners were also very impressive but Incendies is his best work yet.
½ December 11, 2014
If like me you've never fully grasped the rationales behind various Middle East conflicts then seek out this film.. Incendencies uses a family's search for their missing sibling to take us on an odessey through a namless war ravaged country & condem "the merciless logic of reprisal"
December 10, 2014
It is, perhaps, a very pretentious and purposefully "artsy" film, but "Incendies" is the sort of film that can probably get away with that. Solid acting and a realistic and gripping storyline make the filmmaking techniques almost irrelevant.

The film is told in two distinct eras across two generations of a Middle-Eastern family from Canada. Simon and Jeanne are tasked by the will of their mother to find and make peace with their father and long-lost brother. Meanwhile, flashbacks tell the story of their mothers trauma, radicalism, criminal activity and imprisonment whilst still living in the Middle East.

The mostly French and Lebanese cast members all put in a remarkable amount of emotion into this film, adding weight to some of the darker moments of this terrible story. It's a very revealing film, and despite some eye-rolling film tropes, you'd be quite heartless if this film doesn't touch you in some way.

½ February 4, 2011
Excellent film. You begin to wonder where it is going but stick with it, the story kicks you right in the balls.
November 17, 2014
Great movie for a great and tough story.

Good photography and cut, the story is well developed and the performances are superb.

Also, it doesn't fail on being over dramatic. Just the perfect balance.

A must to be seen.
November 6, 2014
One of the best movies i have seen for a long time
November 3, 2014
Villeneuve constrói uma história de ritmo lento, com inúmeros pontos de tensão, que aos poucos sufocam o espectador durante um processo torturante de descobertas de seus complexos personagens. Inseridos em um estranho painel dramático composto de mistério, violência e morte, os protagonistas enfrentam sempre ambientes inóspitos e desconfortáveis, aumentando a sensação de apreensão em busca de seus objetivos.
As ótimas atuações, a atmosfera de tensão e o final estarrecedor brindam uma produção realmente notável e que merece todas as críticas positivas que recebeu. Brilhante.
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