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INFOBOX

Being at Home with Claude

Director:

Jean Beaudin

Screenplay

René-Daniel Dubois

Producers

Doris Girard, Louise Gendron

Budget

2.1 M

Locations

Montréal, Québec, Canada

Language

French

Cast

Roy Dupuis, Jacques Godin, Jean Francois Pichette

Distributor

Les Productions du Cerf, National Film Board of Canada

Genre

Drama

Duration

 86 minutes

Release Date

February 7th, 1992

 

 

Considered by Roy himself to be his best film work (Before “Shake Hands With The Devil”), “Being at Home with Claude” will be a revelation to anyone who has met only Michael, the famous emotion-free zone. Be warned! There’s more raw emotion in any five minutes of ‘Claude’ than in an entire LFN series.

There’s little plot to speak of. Yves, a gay hustler, slaughters his lover Claude in the height of passion before the titles have even begun. The film, originally a stage play, consists entirely of the final stages of Yves’ interrogation by the police inspector, made a little more filmic by several black and white flashbacks to illustrate Yves’ story.

It’s not a comfortable film to watch. As the inspector badgers the uncooperative murderer in search of a conventional motive, the dialogue, delivered in impenetrable gutter French, ricochets between the two; tempers flare, old ground is covered and recovered, yet still they stand miles apart in understanding, getting nowhere.

Then suddenly the pace changes, with a flashback of the night Yves and Claude met. Starting in the vulgar meat-market of the gay club, it progresses to the moody stillness of the park where a sexually confused Claude tries timidly to pick Yves up, and continues to the uneasy intimacy of Claude’s apartment. The experienced Yves guides Claude gently through the process with a sensitivity and tenderness to match any ‘romantic moment’ in the cinema. It finally resolves into a mesmerising half-hour monologue by Yves (yes, there’s more Dupuis to the dollar in this film!), resulting in a startling explanation of the crime, a mixture of equal parts horror and poignancy.

The young (27) Roy Dupuis looks sensational as a sex-machine for hire (sorry ladies, wrong orientation, but, believe me, it doesn’t matter!), and is allowed ample opportunity (the likes of which regrettably he hasn’t had since) to showcase his remarkable talent for portraying the profoundest emotions with subtlety and delicacy. Jacques Godin as the grizzled inspector is an excellent antagonist to the young street punk, and the sultry City of Montreal during the Jazz Festival provides a suitably atmospheric backdrop and score to this highly charged scenario.

Being at Home with Claude bears numerous repeated viewings, and is a must for all Roy Dupuis fans. Go haunt your local gay sources and nag them till they find you a copy. (Version viewed was in French, with English subtitles. UK Distributors : Dangerous To Know. UK Cert 18 1hr 30 mins)

Visiting Montreal soon? Why not try going Looking for Yves.

 

 

Promotional Appearances

Studio Libre, February 1992

La Vie @ Quebec, February 1992

INFOBOX

Being at Home with Claude

Director:

Jean Beaudin

Screenplay

René-Daniel Dubois

Producers

Doris Girard, Louise Gendron

Budget

2.1 M

Locations

Montréal, Québec, Canada

Language

French

Cast

Roy Dupuis, Jacques Godin, Jean Francois Pichette

Distributor

Les Productions du Cerf, National Film Board of Canada

Genre

Drama

Duration

 86 minutes

Release Date

February 7th, 1992

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