Aline | So that we still love it ★★★

The youngest of a family of 14 children and gifted for singing, Aline Dieu goes from an anonymous childhood to a life of international star the day her path crosses that of the artist agent Guy-Claude Kamar. Film freely inspired by Celine Dion’s career.

Film-event in the form of a love letter to Celine Dion, Aline is defined as a work “freely inspired by” the singer’s career. A precision in the form of a warning necessary when surfing 45 years of life in just over two hours. The result ? Friendly and unequal.

The beginning ofAline, strange and wobbly, borrows from the codes of fantasy and allegory. Then the film slowly migrates to a format close to the classic and linear biographical film.

Good, because after the opening on an immaculate diva listening to the song Ordinary by Robert Charlebois, we try to condense the story of two generations of God (Dion) in a few minutes. An unconvincing exercise that we could have avoided.

The choice that Valérie Lemercier made to play Aline at all ages did not convince us. No more than the vaguely erased accent that moves away more than it approaches the character she wanted to play.

And it’s all the more unfortunate that to give the answer, the director gave Sylvain Marcel (Guy-Claude Kamar) and Danielle Fichaud (Sylvette Dieu) tailor-made roles. Danielle Fichaud is excellent as a worried mother. Sylvain Marcel plays the role of his life. He is René Angélil without ever caricaturing him.

Elsewhere, one will agree or not with the choice of the biographical elements retained and the historical truth attached to it. Céline on Michel Jasmin’s program broadcast on Radio-Canada in the film (we see the logo on a camera), really? Nothing about the fact that she sang for the Pope, one of the first big hits of her career?

All this is excusable in the name of the sacrosanct “freely inspired by”. What irritated us more is that all of the empathetic side of Aline’s character is squeezed out. Apart from a too wise signing session and a vague exchange with a few quidams, this Aline never approaches her audience. Yes, we see her moved on stage, but you never feel a real human warmth, a closeness.

Several beautiful moments

More the story ofAline advance, the better.

The first beautiful moment occurs when Aline, between the end of her adolescence and the beginning of her adult life, dances alone in a house that has become much too small for her. Here, Aline becomes Alice on the verge of finding herself in Wonderland. A tasty metaphor.

With all due respect for the members of the Dion family who have spoken, the Dieu family presented in the film is also far from the Bougons. Admittedly, they are sometimes rustic and there are some reductive passages like this exchange on the Vôtican and this scene where Aline warms her meal with a hair dryer while saying that it is “à la québécoise”.

But otherwise, the family portrayed in the film is made up of good people who sing, have fun, help each other, love their neighbor, and earn an honest living. We are far from the cynical Bougons and followers of small tricks.

And if the famous scene where Aline, in a wedding dress, goes through the window, is invented on her very face, it is preceded by a magical shot where the family, moved and smiling, sings Thousand after thousand by Willie Lamothe to the delight of a tearful Aline.

This musical moment is added to all the others that form the basis of the film. All the sequences where Aline sings are powerful. The soundtrack is also starred with songs by other artists highlighting certain passages, including that of an anonymous Aline strolling through Las Vegas to the sound of Going to a Town de Rufus Wainwright.

Everything about this Celine Dion movie was created and thought to make us still love her. But it’s not the great movie you can expect about Charlemagne’s diva either. The cinematographic field remains open.




Valerie Lemercier

With Valérie Lemercier, Sylvain Marcel and Danielle Fichaud

2 h 06

Consult the film schedule

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