FILM: "Laurence Anyways" at the Digital Gym Cinema in North Park

Jaclyn and I went to see "Laurence Anyways" at the new Digital Gym Cinema in North Park (more on that later), yesterday.

                                          Image via Film School Rejects

I could spout off a litany of superlatives in praise of Xavier Dolan’s stunning (see, there’s one!), “Laurence Anyways”, but that would prove to be ultimately hollow and reductive.

                                          Image via Trespass Magazine

I suppose if I were coerced by mysterious external stimuli to distill the essence of the film into a series of “buzzwords”, they would be: compelling, poignant, stylish, and epic.  And I suppose if I were placed in front of a roulette wheel populated by film criticism clichés, I would spin the wheel, cross my fingers and hope it landed on "sumptuous feast." 

                                Image via "Laurence Anyways" official site

However, as I intimated before, there’s not much that can be said about the third feature from the budding French-Canadian auteur -- other than what’s been said here and here -- for it really must be experienced.

"Laurence Anyways" ascended nearly all the way to the top of the list of my favorite films of the year (which can be found here).  It's a thoroughly engrossing and affecting picture and a genuinely good time (Hooray for film criticism cliches!).  For a list of playdates and more information, go here:

In the meantime, take a moment out of your day, and soak these in:

Fear not, though these clips may indicate otherwise, M. Dolan does not sacrifice substance for style.  The most profoundly moving sequences are those in which M. Dolan exhibits restraint and allows the action to play out quietly and intimately.

For more of the fantastic soundtrack, check out this Spotify playlist featuring most of the film's music:

Also, go out and support your local art cinema, boys and girls!  If you live in San Diego, check out the Digital Gym Cinema on 30th St. and El Cajon Blvd, across from the inimitable Rudford's Restaurant and adjacent to the San Diego Coffee and Tea Collective.  

                               Image via

It's a super cool place with unique concessions (Dublin Dr. Pepper, FTW) and neat merch (DVD Collection of Spike Jonze music videos, F Yeah!).  

                                Image via

The theater is comfortable and the presentation is nice.

                                          Image via Film Geeks Facebook page

It's a small theater so there's no 35mm or DCP projector, but the sound and image quality in the theater more than likely dwarfs the quality of your home theater, unless this is what your home theater is like:

                                          Image via Digital Trends

In summation, since "Laurence Anyways" just ended its San Diego theatrical run, be sure to look for it on DVD and Blu ray in the near future, and in the meantime, check out the Digital Gym Cinema's film calendar for a list of films playing now and throughout the rest of July.

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