Grand Serpent Du Monde, Le

Release Information
February 19, 1999
Montréal (Parisien)
Library and Archives Canada - Canadian Feature Film Database (LAC)
Funding Sources
Act/Policy
Budget
Budget: $1,400,000
Distributors
NFB National Film Board/Office National du Film
Office National du Film/National Film Board

Production Details

Executive Producer
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Producer
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Monique Létouneau
Line Producer
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Doris Girard
Director
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Director of Photography
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Paul van der Linden
Music
Gabriel Arcand
June Wallack
Serge Laforest
Serge Laforest
Serge Laforest
Serge Laforest
Serge Laforest
Gaëtan Gravel
Gaëtan Gravel
Gaëtan Gravel
Gaëtan Gravel
Gaëtan Gravel
Gaëtan Gravel
Writer
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Monique Proulx
Monique Proulx
Monique Proulx
Monique Proulx
Monique Proulx
Editor
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Monique Fortier
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
Cast
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Gabriel Arcand
Zoé Latraverse
Murray Head
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Jean-Pierre Bergeron
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
Louise Portal
June Wallack
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
Huguette Oligny
France Labonté
France Labonté
Élyzabeth Walling
Élyzabeth Walling
Élyzabeth Walling
Élyzabeth Walling
Élyzabeth Walling
Tobie Pelletier
Tobie Pelletier
Tobie Pelletier
Tobie Pelletier
Tobie Pelletier
Rodrigue Proteau
Rodrigue Proteau
Rodrigue Proteau
Rodrigue Proteau
Rodrigue Proteau
Jacques Languirand
Jacques Languirand
Jacques Languirand
Jacques Languirand
Jacques Languirand
Yves Dion
Yves Dion
98 minutes, 1995

Tom Paradise (Murray Head) is unfailingly polite to everyone. When his mother (Huguette Oligny) calls, he says all the right things. “Yes, I love you… Yes, I will come to dinner.” When his girlfriend Sarah (Elisabeth Walling) calls, he says exactly the same things. He is playful and considerate with Sarah. When they are alone, they are perfectly happy. Yet Sarah does not inhabit the same emotional space as Tom. She is a realist. She wants to have a family and a normal life. He resists. His dream of endless freedom keeps him from assuming what he clearly considers to be the shackles of everyday life.

Tom drives a city bus; he has the night shift. Each night, among the casual passengers – workers going home to sleep, tough-looking teenagers – Tom meets his regulars. There is his friend Jean-Pierre (Jean LeMaigre) who, though married and successful, is profoundly unhappy. And there is Monsieur (Gabriel Arcand), a man who suffers from some undefined mental condition and who regards “Monsieur the bus driver” as his friend. Monsieur appears nightly, crossing the road in front of the headlights.

When Tom passes a motorist in distress, parked beside the freeway with her door open and slouched in the front seat, he stops the bus. On approaching the woman (Louise Portal), who is obviously the worse for drink, he proffers, not a general offer of assistance, but a comfortable place to sit in his bus. A tactful way to get a drunk off the road. She accepts. To his surprise, he discovers that she is Carmen, a former lover with whom he had spent part of his youth trying to re-create Jack Kerouac’s idealistic vision of freedom in On the Road.

One night, Anaïs (Zoé Latraverse) gets on the bus. She is reading On the Road. At first, she ignores Tom; he is, after all, twice her age. He is fascinated by her independence and by her determination to go to Mexico and San Francisco, just as he once did. They begin to talk. Occasionally at the end of his shift, they stand together looking over the city, but imagining the Grand Canyon.

Le Grand Serpent du Monde enjoys strong performances from Murray Head as Tom and from Gabriel Arcand, who received a nomination for a Genie for his portrayal of Monsieur. Zoé Latraverse is captivating as the mysterious and secretive Anaïs; the audience is never quite sure what Anaïs will do or say and she certainly keeps Tom Paradise off balance from beginning to end.

Evelyn Ellerman

Commentaries


  • Tom Paradise (Murray Head) drives a city bus; he has the night shift. Each night, among the casual passengers – workers going home to sleep, tough-looking teenagers – Tom meets his regulars. There is the lady who smuggles her small dog onto the bus...

Contributed Notes