TIFF Docs

Welcome to F.L.

Geneviève Dulude-De Celles

This feature-length documentary by filmmaker Geneviève Dulude-De Celles offers a candid portrait of the smart, passionate and reflective students at a typical Quebec high school as they reach the end of their teenage years and contemplate the lives that lie ahead for them.

Bienvenue à F.L. is a documentary portrait of high-school students in the Quebec city of Sorel-Tracy. Having studied there herself over a decade ago, director Geneviève Dulude-De Celles returns to the school to get to know its current undergraduates. The resulting film is a heartfelt depiction of what is for many people life's most confusing and extreme chapter — but also its most formative and affirming one.

Nearing the final days of their adolescence, the youths open up about their schooling, their lives, the role they see themselves playing in society, and the uncertain future that lies ahead. What comes across immediately in the interviews is the clarity and profundity of their thoughts. Reflecting on friendships and family relations, engagement with peers, and passions ranging from sports to human-rights activism, the interviewees give us a look at the young generation's concerns — and their candidness about the questions they face may well lead you to ask some fundamental questions of yourself.

With her short film La Coupe (selected by TIFF for last year's Canada's Top Ten) and now this, her first feature-length work, Dulude-De Celles establishes herself as a keen chronicler of life's turning points, with a refined touch that conveys her subjects' experience to great effect. Introducing us to a group of personalities as smart and as varied as can be, Bienvenue à F.L. provides a constantly refreshing outlook, telling us that, really, the kids are all right.

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