A Christmas tale

A Christmas tale

DVD - 2009 | French
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Junon is the matriarch of the troubled Vuillard family, who come together at Christmas after she learns she needs a bone marrow transplant from a blood relative. The Vuillard's shared history of physical and mental illness, estrangement, self harm, and loss doesn't lead itself to the idea of a cheerful holiday season. Hopefully the Christmastime reunion, a scheme concocted by three of the youngest family members, will finally bring peace to their family.
Publisher: [Irvington, N.Y.] : Criterion Collection, [2009]
ISBN: 9781604651867
Branch Call Number: DVD FEATURE CHRIS
Characteristics: 2 videodiscs (Not rated)(152 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in. + 1 booklet
Alternative Title: Un conte de noël
Notes: Originally released as a motion picture in 2008
Special features: New, restored High-Definition digital transfer, supervised by director Arnaud Desplechin; "L'aimée:" Desplechin's 2007 documentary about the selling of his family home; new documentary featuring interviews with Desplechin and actors Mathieu Amalric and Catherine Deneuve; original theatrical trailers; includes a booklet featuring an essay by critic Philip Lopate


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Dec 21, 2014

This isn't something you'd want to check out for some Christmas cheer, but if your into dysfunctional dynamics then you might enjoy it. I would have to watch it a second time, not sure what I think of it, my initial perceptions may change on a second viewing.

Dec 28, 2013

English title: A Christmas Tale. I don't understand the dislike for this movie I've seen here and on IMDB. As many have pointed out, it has a number of similarities to Wes Anderson's "The Royal Tenenbaums" (another film that I think is great): a sick patriarch (matriarch in this case), a dysfunctional family brought back together, playful visuals, references to other films & books, an eclectic soundtrack and endearingly screwed up characters. For those who think this is overly somber, I recently watched Bergman's "Autumn Sonata" and this is a far more nuanced and sardonic (though still moving) handling of family drama. The whole cast is excellent, but it is anchored by the regal Catherine Denueve (the Lioness in Winter) and Arnaud regular Mathieu Amarlic, who plays the black sheep brother. I loved it and thought that it soared by, despite its long running time. Bravo.

Dec 02, 2013

Desplechin has a reputation that he hasn't earned. This is a flimsy story, full of improbabilities that does not convince. Why does Amalric's sister hate him so violently, to the point of asking their parents to cut him out of the family? What part do the other characters play in the family drama--this was not fleshed out satisfactorily. Amalric and Deneuve are effective.

Jun 05, 2012

love this movie! think royal tennanbaums but emotionally gritty and a little more true to familial dysfunctional life. ultimately redeeming.

nabab Mar 20, 2011

The film contain many layers in need of exploration.

Dec 10, 2009

Fair - A Christmas Tale (2008) [Foreign - French] 152 min. This is not the typical Christmas-themed film. It's revolves around a family Christmas reunion which is overshadowed by the news that the matriarch of the family played by Catherine Deneuve has a rare form of cancer and requires an aggressive form of treatment for any chance of survival. Though the performances are excellent, the story doesn't take on a life to allow us to keep watching for little over 2.5 hours. It misses a comedic touch by French Canadian director Denys Arcand to make it less sombre. Some of the motivations for the hatreds from one family member to the other is not completely clear which lessened the effects of the story of a dying woman. This may need a further viewing but at this length, it'll be hard to find the time.


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