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52nd edition

Avoir 16 Ans

Fortnight 1979, Feature film, 2h10


We thought, a few weeks after the events which inspired the screenplay, of shooting a documentary about this subject while it was still « hot ». But the « actors » of the drama were still minors and their parents, moreover, didn’t want to institute proceedings. We then chose « fiction » without remorse, with on the contrary the desire to universalize, to render our subject timeless ; to keep the strict moral substance and ideology. Thus, it was never a question of taking sides in favour or against, to defend or to acquit. In this true story, that which struck us was to notice that « secondary institutions » and those who are leading them are directly in the image of the « primary institutions », of high politics, high officials, high technocracy. In short, this true story took place in the same way that the crisis of October 1970 ; and we even believe that it could not have happened without it. Hence the immediate need we felt to write and film « Avoir 16 Ans ». A government may change, but the institutions remain however. A documentary certainly would have caused a scandal. Thinking it over, that scandal would have been useless, lost among other daily scandals. Therefore, we wrote a film of SIGNS and REFERENCES, a film OPEN to explanations and reflection, rather than a film closed in on the psychology of the characters and the anecdotes of the story. As if we were medical experts, we furnish a list of wounds. It is up to the audience to IMAGINE the life of those on which we have performed those « autopsies ». Jean-Pierre LEFEBVRE


Jean-Pierre Lefèbvre

Differently of his contemporary quebecois’ directors, Lefebvre didn’t make his class in the documentary. After his Literary studies and seven years of critics, he immediatly began directing fiction movies; a short in 1964 _ »L’Homoman »_ preceeding an ininterrompt serie of movies of which he produce at least the first five. In fact, he has found his own production company Cinak Ltee and his own distributing company Disci Inc. His style is based on low cost movies, on natural location and using few characters. He approach the cinema in the same ‘maniere’ then Luc Besson; a non-narrative non-psychological cinema, mostly without action where the characters present themselves by the way they live.

Aubert Pallascio
Éric Beauséjour
Lise L’Heureux
Louise Choquette
Patrick Peuvion
Yves Benoît

Claude Paquette, Jean-Pierre Lefèbvre

Guy Dufaux

Marguerite Duparc

Gilles Bellemare, Alain Lamontagne, Paul Piche

Production : CINAK, Québec