Hot Docs 2014: Absences

Absences In her latest film, director Carole Laganière (East End Kids) explores four subjects, each with a different story of absence.  Absences is inspired by Laganière’s own experiences with her mother, whose memory is slowly disappearing, as a result of Alzheimer’s syndrome.  The film also tells the story of Ines, who returns to Croatia to find her mother, Deni, who learns of his Quebec heritage following his father’s death, and Nathalie, who is desperately searching for her missing sister.  Through these stories of loss, Absences captures the experience of a void that is waiting to be filled. Of the four stories told within Absences, I was probably most interested in Nathalie’s search for her sister in Toronto, which includes a section of her desperately travelling to various bars in a cab.  Nathalie’s story is probably the most dire of the four and her search could have almost been the subject of a documentary on its own.  I was also into Innes story, who is off to see her mother for the first time in 19 years.  It is undoubtedly the most emotional of the four. I admit that it wasn’t until after watching the film that I clued into the fact that director Carole Laganière’s own personal story was one of the four.  This story stands out among the four, since it is a bit more about losing someone due to a mental condition, rather than them being physically absent.  Even though some of these stories don’t have much closure, Absences is still overall a somewhat interesting examination of loss and how it affects us. 7 | FAIR  Screenings:

  • Fri, April 25, 6:00 PM – TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
  • Sat, April 26, 1:00 PM – TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
  • Say, May 3, 9:00 PM – Scotiabank Theatre 7

Sean Kelly Author

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described über-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).