His name is Sugar. He’s the cute little dog that Sarah (Sonia Cordeau) and Jonathan (Guillaume Cyr) adore. He is also the only living thing that can hold the attention of Sarah’s mother (Sylvie Léonard) when the latter gives news from Florida. In other words, the pet occupies such an important place in the lives of these people that we know in advance, in this kind of film, that it will not arrive at the end in quite the same state. …
For his second feature, Lawrence Côté-Collins (L’ecartée) offers a fierce satire of the consumer society, while displaying a deep empathy for the people who are trapped. The filmmaker, who co-wrote her screenplay with Alexandre Auger (Prank), thus orchestrates her demonstration through the efforts of Sarah and Jonathan to finally afford together the life of their dreams. The purchase of their house – which is due for complete renovation – indeed excites the lovebirds to the point where their first activity after walking through the door – wedged of course – is intimate in nature, under Sugar’s somewhat bewildered gaze. .
Reality will soon catch up with them. Not only is the work required bigger – and much more expensive – than expected (a classic case), but the lack of resources of this couple of good-hearted people with questionable tastes will also quickly wear out Sarah’s patience. To get out of it, the young woman will register as a candidate for Déco à gogo, a show she loves, while Jonathan, a fan of medieval role-playing games recently laid off, accepts a small contract “under the table” , easy to honor in appearance.
Obviously, everything turns into a worst nightmare in a decor that gradually becomes more and more garish and kitsch. It is also worth mentioning here the work of Vincent Biron in the cinematography, as well as that of Sylvie Desmarais, the visual designer. As the great Dolly Parton once said in one of her famous flights, it costs a lot to look so cheap.
In this context, Lawrence Côté-Collins could have remained on the surface and contented himself with a caricature, but Bungalow, while fully assuming its elements of dark humor, is also sincerely interested in the drama that the protagonists experience. Sarah is particularly touching when she unpacks her bag as an audition for the renovation show she wants to participate in. Jonathan is just as much when he tackles You miss me at karaoke, at a time when his life as a couple is seriously floundering and his self-esteem is at an all-time low. Sonia Cordeau and Guillaume Cyr always find the right note, without overloading. In their supporting roles, Geneviève Schmidt (Sarah’s friend), Eve Landry (a renovator with a crush on Sarah), Benoît Mauffette (Jonathan’s friend) and Martin Larocque (bar owner) also each have their own time. .
For the past few weeks, Quebec cinema has really been on a roll.