Tuesday, December 14, 2021

La guerre des tuques (1984) Directed by André Melançon

Well this is one NOT to watch.
SPOILERS but read anyway! 

Yes I know this is holiday classic, beloved by all of Québec. A light romp, growing up story of a snow fight "war" between children around a huge snow castle/fort. I understand fully that is a commentary on actual war using the children as proxies. Whatever. 

The filmmaking's below par, it has many elements I can't stomach like "funny" music to tell you when things are funny and the images overall are sort of muddy. This can be excused, many films are not beloved because of their stunning cinematography, etc. but because they represent a time or a place in the lives of people having lived through similar times and places. How and when you saw the film can make a big difference in how it affects you and how you think about it late in life. 

At the end of the "war" part of the snow fort collapses, killing the much loved dog of one of the main characters. The two sides stop fighting and bury the dog... then fun happy music and funny shots from the film are played over the credits - like nothing TERRIBLE happens at all. War metaphors aside, I don't think this film is great for young children, especially those with pets. The dog is crushed and suffocated to death because of the actions of horrible, selfish children. Anti-war point made - cue the goofy happy music! 

There was a cartoon version remake in 2016 which does try and handle the subject better, but still kills the dog in the end so there's that. 

The cavalier way the dog's death is handled and the all is well now the "war" is over really rubs me the wrong way as if you couldn't tell.

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