Cette Maison – TIFF Canada’s Top Ten 2022

Cette Maison

Cette Maison – TIFF Canada’s Top Ten 2022

Bridgeport, January 2008. A teenage girl is found hanged in her room. While everything points to suicide, the autopsy report reveals something else. Ten years later, the director and cousin of the teenager examine the past causes and future consequences of this unsolved crime. Like an imagined biography, the film will explore the relationship between the security of the living space and the violence that can jeopardize it.

Filmmaker Miryam Charles dramatizes what it could've been like if her murdered cousin was still alive in . Tessa () was born in 1994 in Stamford and died in 2008 in Bridgeport. The daughter of Haitian immigrant Valeska (), Tessa's life before and after her death is told in a series of what-if fantasies. This includes mother and daughter having conversations with each other that they would never have.

Cette Maison Synopsis

Cette Maison (This House) is a hybrid of documentary and fantasy written and directed by Miryam Charles. The film reflects on Miryam's cousin Tessa, who was murdered by strangulation at 14. However, the film doesn't delve into the murder itself and imagines what it would've been like if Tessa had been alive and able to still interact with her family. The film also tackles sociopolitical issues, such as this Hatian-immigrant family's response to the 1995 Quebec referendum.

My Thoughts on Cette Maison

Cette Maison is a hard film to categorize, as it is neither a documentary nor a full-on narrative film. It is probably best to call Cette Maison an experimental fantasy film driven by the repetitive narration of the fictionalized depiction of the murdered Tessa. In some ways, Cette Maison reminds me of 2018's My Name Is Myeisha, but it's not quite as enthralling as that film.

Trailer for Cette Maison – TIFF Canada's Top Ten 2022

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Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly
Sean Patrick Kelly is a freelance film critic and blogger based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.