2012 [FRENCH]


Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 86%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Spilled 43%
IMDb Rating 6.5 10 442

Keywords:   animal

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Uploaded By: FREEMAN
April 17, 2022 at 01:55 PM



720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
660.27 MB
French 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 11 min
P/S 2 / 6
1.33 GB
French 5.1
23.976 fps
1 hr 11 min
P/S 7 / 10

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by avery-21 7 / 10

A masterfully composed film essay in the guise of a fly-on-the-wall documentary, Bestiaire questions what we see when we look at animals.

Denis Côté's latest provocation takes its title and inspiration from medieval books pairing fanciful images of beasts with moral lessons. A masterfully composed film essay in the guise of a fly-on-the-wall documentary, Bestiaire questions what we see when we look at animals.

The film opens with eyes intently observing an object off-screen, which we gradually discern to be a stuffed deer, the assigned subject of a class of art students. From this glassy-eyed product of taxidermy, we are transported to a Montreal safari park in the winter off-season, where we view exotic animals in snowbound enclosures and restrictive holding pens as they return our gaze with watchful eyes.

Eventually we meet very strange and noisy animals, the humans who keep watch over the beasts, feed them, and clean up after them. A symphony of images and sound ensues, building to a climax of noise worthy of San Quentin (1937).

Faded pinup girls and animal heads segue to an interlude in a taxidermy workshop, where we witness a grisly transformative craft by which a duck carcass is crushed, skinned, stuffed and posed into a simulacrum of the living animal.

The safari park in summer is a Babel of wordless voices and clumsy interactions of tourist families with animals, in which the beasts display a dignity somehow lacking in their human observers. A baby elephant takes a stroll alone, and credits roll over the sound of sketching.

While good to see in Forum, Bestiaire must have been a blast to see at Le Festival International du Film pour Enfants de Montréal. A film to see with the eyes of a child, or an animal.

Mirror post:

Reviewed by jhalaban 9 / 10

We know it: filming animals is always problematic.

We know it: filming animals is always problematic. How to portray these enigmatic species? How to portray the in-communication between our species and the others? What do we portray when we film animals?

We also know the easiest solution, though the fakes, is to do it the way channels as Animal Planet or Nat Geo do. That is, depicting the animals as if they were just like humans, not because of their looks but rather for their conducts, which many times are explained by means of similarity with human actions.

I believe Denis Côté gives us good account of the difficulties stated above. His portrayal of animals in a zoo outside Quebec is a testimony of an impossibility: trying to disentangle something as the essence of those beings, always mysterious to us. To underline that difficulty and to avoid an easy empathy between the spectators and the characters (in this particular case, beings belonging to other species included to the film), the movie is full of scenes fragmented portrayals of the animals. Over here one can see a horn -that is also decentered in the frame; over there an ox glances to the camera most enigmatically

The portrait of the taxidermists reinforces the idea of the impossibility of the knowledge of the other, shown especially in the sequence where a duck gets "fabricated" just keeping from the original animal the skin and feathers. The rest of the body has been replaced by synthetic objects.

But Denis Côté also portrays humans and in those scenes we have two different registers, one more conventional, when portraying the visitors, and one more original, when the faces of the caretakers are shown. The director doesn't interview them. We just have the record of their acts. How is the mind and sensitivity of certain human beings shaped when they are forced by their job to spend so many time with members of other species? What do they ask themselves? Which are their humanly preoccupations regarding these being which they have to feed and take care of? Which feelings do they develop in a context where language is useless beyond a few words?

These and other questions are stimulated by Denis Côté's film and the ability to arise questions is what justifies the making of this movie.

Reviewed by marymorrissey 1 / 10

"a film to see with the eyes of an animal" . .. uh, OK

long winded, short on substance, big on intentionally poorly composed shots which, if they are meant to suggest the POV of an animal, are an insult to our 4 footed friends.

what is really most irritating about this film is the pretense at some sort of 'objectivity' (primarily through shots that give the impression nobody was looking through the camera viewfinder and editing of sequences that for large stretches simply go nowhere) which in fact is anything but - rather "Bestiare" evinces soft pedaled but nonetheless smarmy, constant clucking, moralizing, pontificating high dudgeon from first frame to last. a great effort is made to 'rigorously' dehumanize the people who participated on camera. why sure, we're stupid enough an audience to imagine the "bestiary" is run by zombies, no heavy handed manipulation there.

Something tells me that auteur and crew helped themselves to all manner of meat, fish and poultry all the days of their lives before summoning up the quiet indignation that results in a film like "bestiary". cause that would just be so typical... and a hoity toity typical typifies "Bestiare".

A glance at this director's CV and my jaw dropped at his fecundity. But if this is typical of the films he makes, they really might be cranked out at the rate of about a per week.

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