Skip to main content

LILIES

Canada, 1996 (MIFF 1997, International)

Director: John Greyson

1952, and Bilodeau (Marcel Sabourni), a Catholic Bishop arrives at a Quebec jail to hear a prisoner's confession. But when he meets the prisoner, Simon (Aubert Pallascio), a man he knew 40 years ago, it seems that it's not Simon's confession he's to hear. From the discomfort of the confessional, unable to get away, Bilodeau is forced to watch a re-enactment of the events that led to Simon's arrest back in 1912 - events that involve jealousy, revenge, and the love that dare not speak its name.

With layers of theatricality and sexuality, where plays are within plays, men perform as women, and desire is barely kept in check, Lilies centres around three good-looking young students; Simon (Jason Cadieux). Bilodeau (Matthew Fergu­son) and Vallier (Danny Cilmore). Vallier loves Simon and is not afraid to know it; Simon loves Vallier, but thinks he shouldn't; and Bilodeau adores Simon, but can't admit it, so denounces it instead. The tangled connection to the present and the prison is unravelled and revealed as the play, and the film progress. Combining the atmos­phere of Maurice and Another Country with the work of Jean Genet, Lilies presents a stylised, involving story with mannered but effective dialogue and a real sense of sorrow, regret and guilt.

See also...

The Making of “Monsters”

Bertolt Brecht is a catfish and Lotte Lenya's a black lesbian docomaker in this wild and crazy all singing, all dancing musical satire, on the set of "Monsters", a telemovie about gay-bashing from ... More »

UNCUT

John Greyson, acclaimed Canadian director of Lilies (MIFF 97) and AIDS musical Zero Patience (1993), embraces a more experimental - though eminently accessible - style with Uncut. The scene is ... More »

THE LAW OF ENCLOSURES

It's 1991 and the first thing Beatrice notices about Henry is an egg-shaped tumour at the base of his neck. Beatrice, played by Sarah Polley (Go, MIFF 1999) mistakes Henry's cancer for AIDS. A sweet ... More »

FIRE

Courageous and unflinching, Deepa Mehta's engrossing study of a lesbian affair inter­weaves sexual repression, pressure-cooker desire, crumbling patriarchy and cultural transfor­mation in ... More »

HARD CORE LOGO

Hard Core Logo is the top draw Canadian punk rock band, that is, if it was a real group. Director Bruce McDonald is only too familiar with mixing truth and outrageous fiction in order to craft his ... More »

KISSED

Molly Parker gives an enigmatic perfor­mance as Sandra Larson, the central char­acter in this compelling tale of perverse eroticism set in an anonymous Canadian town. The fiim charts the ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director