Wednesday, March 26, 2014

I Killed My Mother

It's made quite clear early on in Xavier Dolan's I Killed My Mother that the familial bond between Hubert Minel (Dolan) and mother Chantale (Anne Dorval) is a frayed one. It could initially be distinguished as simple teenage drama on Hubert's part. But it quickly becomes something else.

There are a number of films revolving around the tumultuous lives that teenagers often lead. But often times it's overdone, perhaps because the directors and writers (and sometimes the actors) aren't in their teens. Dolan, meanwhile, was sixteen when he wrote I Killed My Mother (and twenty when it was released), so he easily defied that Hollywood annoyance.

Dolan has stated that his first foray into directing was semi-autobiographical, so it makes I Killed My Mother all the more fascinating. What aspects of the film were from Dolan's own life and what aspects were from his mind? These are thoughts that run through your mind as you watch.

What also makes I Killed My Mother an interesting watch is that the film doesn't actively try to make the viewer pick sides. It doesn't want you to side with either Hubert or Chantale; it simply wants you to watch the mayhem unfold.

I Killed My Mother is easily one of the best directorial debuts I've seen in a while. Though I have to admit I'm envious of Dolan. Making a film this good at the age of 20, which is also my current age? Show off some more, why don't you?

My Rating: *****


  1. Great review. I've got this one in my Netflix queue, I need to get around to watching it.

  2. This sounds right up my alley. Gonna watch on Netflix soon!


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