When Samuel (Maxime Dumontier) and Emile’s (Marine Johnson) mother is killed in a road accident in a remote rural area in Northern Quebec, the young adult siblings both with development disabilities cannot start to grasp the reality that she will never be back. Samuel works shredding paper at a print shop and lives in a Care Home during the weekday, and he still insists on getting packed and ready for his mother to pick him up for weekend as she has done for years. Emile on other hand has always lived at home, and now when she is brought to join Samuel at his Facility, both siblings are completely confused.
When they are at their mother’s funeral the priest grandly talks about their mother now living in ‘paradise’ so at the very first opportunity they have, they run away in the middle of the night to make their way back home to try and find her. It’s a precarious journey on the snow covered roads in the middle of quite a bitter winter and they have never undertaken it unsupervised before. but they eventually succeed to discover just an empty house. Next day Emile takes it upon herself to cross the frozen lake in search of Matchi Manitou a rather magical territory which legend has is like paradise, so she assumes her mother will be there.
She is totally unprepared for such a hap-hazardous and dangerous journey and as soon as she is discovered missing by the siblings Aunt who lives next door, she tells Samuel to jump on his snowmobile and go search for her.
This heart-wrenching tale from Quebecois filmmaker Denis Langlois intwines local Cree and Anicinabe myths into this story grieving and death and how these two lost souls try to start to comprehend loss. They have little sense even of fear and now alone in this wild remote terrain they just keep on with their search in these arctic conditions until they physically can go no farther. The reality is their search will end up giving them a greater truth than they ever could imagine.
Beautifully filmed in this stark and desolate terrain with fine performances from the two young leads, this very different kind of road movie makes for a very compelling view.